WHO will be the Netflix/Spotify of comics? Several companies have been trying to offer all you can eat comcis buffets, but a lack of top content has been holding them back. But Scribd just made a major play announcing a $8.99 a month plan that allows you access to 10,000 comics, including top titles from Marvel, IDW/Top Shelf, Archie, Dynamite and Valiant. Scribd has been around for a while as en embeddable pdf reader, and already offers over a million ebooks and audiobooks on a subscription basis, so this makes a lot of sense.
Titles in the 10,000 book library include Spider-Man, My Little Pony, X-O Manowar, Lcoke & Key and graphic novels by Alan Moore, Matt Fraction, Gail Simone, George R.R. Martin and more—so a lot of good content but not everything available on Marvel Unlimited, for instance.
“We are very excited to take this step in expanding our subscription service beyond books,” said Trip Adler, co-founder and CEO of Scribd in a statement. “This addition gives comics readers the freedom of unlimited reading, while also giving our ebook and audiobook lovers the opportunity to discover comics and graphic novels.”
“IDW and Top Shelf have been considering subscription models for comics for some time,” said Jeff Webber, IDW’s Vice President of Digital Publishing & Business Development in his own statement. “Scribd came to us with the perfect opportunity to offer the entire catalog to fans and new readers. Time for some binge-reading!”
“For decades, a driving force at Marvel has been the desire to put comics in the hands of new readers,” sschimed in Daniele Campbell, Marvel’s VP CRM. “Our partnership with Scribd allows some of Marvel’s greatest stories to sit alongside Scribd’s already vast and eclectic catalogue of content in an effort to reach readers who might not have access to a comic shop.”
Ever unafraid to take a digital plunge, IDW is offering a two month free trial running until 2/17, where as regular Scribd offers a one month trial.
I’ve never been a fan of how Scribd embeds work in blog posts, but I never tried their sub service, which is optimized for tablets, so I’m sure it will be a better reading experience.
$8.99 — the cost of a mere two or three comics a month— is a pretty reasonable deal—well this be the next killer app? What do you all think? Will you sign up?
Some more deets on the content:
● Classic Comics – Classic runs of the Avengers, the X-Men, Daredevil, Archie, Judge Dredd, the Rocketeer and more
● Top Characters – Spider-Man, the Avengers, Betty and Veronica, Kevin Keller, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, My Little Pony, G.I. Joe, Bloodshot, Adventure Time
● Major Creators – Alan Moore, Frank Miller, Fiona Staples, Darwyn Cooke, Mark Waid, Ed Brubaker, Renee French, Jeffrey Brown, Joe Hill, and many more
● Acclaimed Graphic Novels – March, From Hell, Swallow Me Whole, Underwater Welder, Spiral-Bound, The Ticking, Too Cool to Be Forgotten
● Award Winners – League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, 30 Days of Night, Locke & Key, Alec, Will You Still Love Me if I Wet the Bed?
● Hit YA Titles – Ultimate Spider-Man, Runaways, Afterlife With Archie, Harbinger, Lumberjanes
● Manga – Partnership with MediaDo brings titles from Cork and Harlequin Manga, including work by acclaimed artist Moyoco Anno
● Leading Publishers – Marvel, Arcana, Archie, Boom! Studios, Dynamite, IDW/Top Shelf, Kingstone, Space Goat, Top Cow, Valiant, Zenescope
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.