DC Comics has announced they are ending their early-release exclusivity window for trade paperback and graphic novels in the direct market. The move will remove the six-day window between when comic shops release DC trade paperback collections, hardcovers, and graphic novels, and when those titles arrive in the wider book market, aligning DC’s comic shop release dates for those offerings with the bookstore release date.
The news, which was reportedly announced in an email to retailers today, isn’t entirely surprising. DC recently moved their new release date from Wednesdays to Tuesdays, already the day of the week when other bookstore products are released. The release date change, initially announced along with the end of DC’s exclusivity with Diamond and the arrival of new distributors UCS and Lunar Distribution, was solidified as more than temporary when DC released information on future new releases through June, all with Tuesday release dates.
It makes total sense that DC would align their release dates across all markets, though the end of that early release window, short though it was, will likely upset some retailers.
What’s DC got up its sleeve next? Between all the changes to their physical offerings and the addition of daily digital releases to their schedule, we’ll definitely be keeping an eye on them.