Somehow we knew this was coming: new publisher DSTLRY is rolling out a digital comics reader, with its announced marketplace to come. The launch title is The Devil’s Cut, DSTLRY’s first print title, which today only will sell for $1. After today the price rises to $6.66, cuz why not.
Although the reader is only in beta v0.1, it’s promised as “the first step towards a full mobile experience and marketplace, scheduled to debut in 2024.” It’s also only for desktops for now; the mobile experience is stilled unstable. 

“The DSTLRY Digital Reader beta v0.1—which we affectionately named White Dog—embodies the raw potential of whiskey’s initial un-aged distillate, a.k.a. White Dog—pure and powerful, hinting at a journey that will lead to a unique experience marked by new notes, delicious innovation, and path-finding mistakes,” said DSTLRY co-founders David Steinberger and Chip Mosher in a joint statement. “We hope customers enjoy the beta and we look forward to improving it and adding a robust mobile and marketplace experience in 2024.”

The digital marketplace plan was part of the initial DSTLRY launch, as Mosher and Steinberger told The Beat back in April. And it boasts unusual features: upon release, DSTLRY’s digital releases will be available directly from the publisher for one week only —Wednesday through Tuesday. General digital releases will launch alongside the print collections. Details on the upcoming digital marketplace weren’t included, but based on earlier conversations, it will include “drops” of digital collectibles and more.

“While we’re still crafting the perfect mix of features and innovation, our Founding Creators and friends are already brewing exceptional top-shelf stories that we can’t deny digital readers any longer,” David Steinberger and Chip Mosher continued in their statement. “We look forward to refining the experience and gathering feedback from digital comic fans in the run up to the launch of a robust mobile and digital marketplace experience in early 2024. Oh, and of course, there are surprise benefits to ownership 😉.”

Among the other goals of the launch: a digital simulation of the “New Comics Wednesday” experience, and a new revenue stream for all involved. And there’s even a trailer. 

Steinberger and Mosher were, of course, also main players in Comixology, which recently reached a sort of sunsetting. Steinberger was a co-founder, and Mosher was behind the Comixology Originals line. Everyone has been expecting their new venture to have some sort of digital presence – or at least as much as non-competes will allow. 

THE DEVIL’S CUT, DSTLRY’s first title, debuted in July in print, an anthology of 11 stories by their lineup of Founding Creators and friends, that also functioned as a launch for their ongoing series. It also sold pretty well, with 50,0000 copies distributed to comics shops. Speaking of those series, they will also launch digitally: Gone #1 by Jock will debut digitally on December 13th, and Somna #1 by Tula Lotay & Becky Cloonan will debut digitally on December 20th. Both debuts will include what’s billed as more digital benefits.”

Here’s more preview pages and covers from THE DEVIL’s CUT, but one thing is clear: the digital space race is on!

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Edited by Will Dennis (Y: The Last Man, Snow Angels), The Devil’s Cut features DSTLRY’s Founding Creators Mirka Andolfo, Brian Azzarello, Marc Bernardin, Elsa Charretier, Becky Cloonan, Lee Garbett, Jock, Joëlle Jones, Tula Lotay, Jamie McKelvie, Junko Mizuno, Stephanie Phillips, Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, and Ram V, as well as friends Francesco Francavilla, Ariela Kristantina, Eduardo Risso, and Christian Ward.


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