At long last, ComiXology is kicking off a line of original digital comics. But rather than making it from whole cloth they’re partnering with Boom!, Valiant and the Harvey Kurtzman estate for this first run. So the results aren’t what you’d expect: an Adventure Time spin off; a high school version of the Valiant universe and the completion of a Harvey Kurtzman comic.
comiXology Originals is a new program for the Amazon division, and will offer new comics content on exclusively on comiXology and Kindle. While in the past the idea of Amazon publishing original comics would have thrown the industry into a tizzy, this line looks fairly benign and may even be additive.
The singles will be priced at $3.99 and the graphic novel at $9.99; all are available for pre-order today.
“Our mission is to make everyone on the face of the planet a comic fan, and with comiXology Originals we’re excited to offer a range of content by diverse creators,” said comiXology co-founder and CEO David Steinberger. “It’s fantastic to be working with publishers across the spectrum to deliver great comics to comiXology and Kindle, offering fans stories that they can’t get anywhere else.”
ComiXology Originals offers a host of diverse comic book content – debut titles include:
- Adventure Time Marshall Lee Spectacular from BOOM! Studios with three all-new original Marshall Lee stories set in BOOM! Studios’ bestselling continuation of Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time TV show. The first story features New York Times bestselling writer Mariko Tamaki with artist Audrey Mok, followed by stories teaming up writer Melanie Gillman with artist Trungles and writer S.M. Vidaurri with artist Asia Kendrick-Horton — all found behind a fully painted cover by Fabio Moon. This digital only exclusive is available for pre-order today on comiXology andKindle for $3.99.
- Valiant High from Valiant Entertainment is a hilarious reimagining of Valiant’s award-winning superhero universe by writer Daniel Kibblesmith (The Late Show with Stephen Colbert), artist Derek Charm (Jughead) with a first issue cover by David Lafuente! Before they became the world’s most formidable heroes, they were roaming the halls at a super-powered preparatory academy where Aric “X-O Manowar” Dacia is a record-setting running back, Colin “Ninjak” King is a debonair foreign exchange student, and Coach Bloodshot is way too into dodgeball! Now…Faith “Zephyr” Herbert is about to discover it all for the first time as the newest girl in school! Issue #1 (of 4) of this digital only exclusive is available for pre-order today on comiXology and Kindle for $3.99.
- Harvey Kurtzman’s Marley’s Ghost will see The New Yorker cartoonist Shannon Wheeler, illustrator Gideon Kendall and editor Josh O’Neill expand and complete Kurtzman’s first attempt at the graphic novel form courtesy of the Estate of Harvey Kurtzman and packagers Kitchen, Lind & Associates. Never completed until now, in the 1950s Kurtzman attempted to adapt the Marley’s ghost section of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol with over 70 pages of breakdowns. The completed work will be a 100+ page digital only exclusive graphic novel and is available for pre-order today for $9.99. on comiXology and Kindle with a winter 2017 release date.
“It’s humbling to kick off the comiXology Originals program with such a fantastic roster of creators like Mariko Tamaki, Derek Charm, Audrey Mok, Fabio Moon, Shannon Wheeler, Harvey Kurztman and so many others,” said Chip Mosher, comiXology’s Head of Content and Senior Director of Communications. “From a fun superhero romp with Valiant, to BOOM!’s Adventure Time, to posthumously finishing Mad Magazine founder Harvey Kurtzman’s Marley’s Ghost – this is truly an embarrassment of riches.”
We’ll have comments from Mosher and Steinberger a bit later in the day.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.