Marvel’s solicitations came out today* and industry watchers were standing by with microscopes to scrutinize a proposed 1) drop in the number of $2.99 books and 2) decrease in the number of books altogether.
On #2, there seems to be some corroboration with what was said at the NYCC retail breakfast, according to Bleeding Cool, which does a big count of all titles in all families. Compared to December, there is a 17 percent drop in the number of titles, and a 20 percent decrease in total cover price.
December: 93 comics – 20 titles at $2.99 (22 pages of story), 55 $3.99 (22 pages of story), 16 titles at $3.99 (30 pages of story). 2 comics $4.99 (44 pages of story)
Complete cost: $353.07 for 2218 pages of story (16 cents a page)
January: 78 comics – 28 at $2.99, 49 at $3.99, 1 at $4.99
Complete cost: $284.22
However, on point #1, there is less evidence. Todd Allen also does a title count of the new books and finds 7 titles at $3.99 vs. 3 titles at $2.99. (Three of the $3.99 books are licensed titles, it should be pointed out.)
Marvel does seem to be undergoing a bit of course correction. We are hearing from creators that previously planned Marvel miniseries based on esoteric characters are being scuttled left and right. But their price drop seems to be rolling out in a very piecemeal fashion.
* ALSO, jeebus, it is hard to find anything on Marvel’s website! If we hadn’t seen Agent M tweet the January books we wouldn’t have ever been able to find it on this labyrinth.
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.