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The Brave Interactive Comic — Disney Goes Digital


By Todd Allen

Disney comics is a complicated topic.  Disney bought Marvel, but the BOOM! had some of their licenses.  BOOM! lost the licenses, but Marvel didn’t exactly come charging out of the gate with a lot of Disney titles.  If you were paying attention to job listings, you’d also have seen Disney was hiring comics editors and digital comics people for their publishing office in White Plains (which is about to move to Burbank).  It looks like we’re seeing their first product: the “Brave Interactive Comic.”


***Relive the powerful adventure of Merida, the heroine of Disney•Pixar’s latest film “BRAVE,” in a new interactive comic!
***Explore each comic page, panel after panel, discovering artwork and special effects that bring every character to life!
***Learn how to draw your favorite characters from the movie with a step-by-step special instruction section!

The Scottish Highlands have long been a fierce, proud land filled with stories, magic, and danger. “Brave” adds to the great lore of this land by telling the tale of Merida, the headstrong daughter of King Fergus and Queen Elinor. When Merida defies an age-old custom, choosing instead to forge her own destiny the ensuing peril forces her to harness all of her skills to undo a beastly curse before it’s too late, and discover the meaning of true bravery.

• Full retelling of the movie in 48 interactive comic pages!
• Two reading modes: panel by panel and autoplay!
• Music and special sound effects in each panel!
• Special sections on the main characters, with a slideshow including sketches and concept art from Pixar artists!
• How-to-Draw Guide, with a step-by-step art course on Merida, Elinor, Mor’du and the Triplets!

Does that description sound a bit like Madefire?

It will also cause a certain number of smirks that the Brave comic is only $1.99.

If you go to the Disney Digital Books page, you’ll it’s only on iOS/iPad/iPhone systems for moment.  Is there going to be a print version of this?  The only mention I could find of a print edition was a pre-order for a website in Malaysia.  I pulled the graphic from that site for this post.  What’s that in the lower left corner?  “Disney Comics.”

Now, before we get carried away, that Disney Comics logo is not on the iPad app.  Disney Comics might be an overseas thing.  For all I know, maybe that’s a print project that was cancelled and that Voila Online never got around to taking down.  Either way, it would appear Disney is proceeding with their comics agenda without Marvel.

It would also appear Tall Chair is involved, since an image of the Brave app is on their home page.  Tall Chair has a content platform that was previously used for the Operation Ajax digital graphic novel.

So there you have it.  A digital comic from Disney.  A stand-alone app.  No trace of a print edition for the U.S. market.  If you can dig up evidence of a print edition, put it in the comments.  I’m a little surprised not to be seeing one.

  1. Here are the credits:

    Adaptation: Alessandro Ferrari
    Layout: Emilo Urbano
    Pencil: Manuela Razzi
    Paint: Giuseppe Fontana, Massimo Rocca, Angela Capolupo

  2. Not available in Italy. Which is kinda ironic since the creative team (as listed by Ray in his post above) seems to be 100% Italian. I hate, hate, hate regional blocks.

  3. These have been out for years, actually, usually all contained in the Digi-Comics app. If I remember right they debuted the app internally back in 2008 when I was there. I haven’t checked in a while but last I did, other movie adaptations were up there with the Digi-Comics treatment. You can just call up DPW publicity for an interview and get the whole story.

    As for print, it’ll most likely be in the Brave one-shot magazine.

  4. That’s the Disney Comics iPhone app logo. I have it on my phone here. You can download all sorts of digital comics on it for anywhere from free to $2.99. It looks like mostly Italian comics translated to English, so it’s a lot of BOOM!-era stuff, but not exclusively. “Brave” isn’t listed in there right now. In fact, there’s a prominent “Cars 2” banner on here, so I’m guessing that’s when the app debuted.

  5. Disney started their Digicomics apps in Britain and Italy quite a few years ago (I remember seeing it when “Epic Mickey” was unveiled at NYCC, Peter David talked about the tie-in prequel comic book, and the Disney Comics editorial staff talked about Disney and Kingdom Comics. 2009.)

    Disney owns the comics rights in Italy, which is why so many comics are produced in Italy. In Britain, the license is shared between the BBC (!) and Egmont, which controls most of the European Disney comics market. It is possible Disney reserved the electronic rights.

    The app can be found in the iTunes bookstore. There’s something similar for the Netherlands.

    Disney comics were also available on the PSP. Is this still active?

  6. The Disney Comics app is almost venerable now, It was released GLOBALLY in 2008 for the Apple products, around the same time as the Comixology App. Disney comics, although not as popular here in the US has a GIANT european footprint and it’s classic, think Banks and Gottfredson and newer stories are downloaded and read around the world. That being said, BRAVE is the first stand-alone GN app.

    Disney Comics has also released comic in the Ibook format.

  7. It does sound a bit like Madefire, but if you really pay attention, you’ll see that Operation Ajax- made by Tall Chair’s publishing platform, came out before Madefire did anything.

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