201108101050.jpgYou have to take “anonymous spy reports” with a grain of salt, but this write up on the recent DC retailer roadshow in London had some interesting candid comments from DC’s SVP of sales Bob Wayne. new formets — OGNs, digital — seem to be inevitable:

Earth One: Superman Volume 2 and Earth One: Batman Volume 1 will both ideally be seen in the next 12 months. Wayne said that he had seen pages from both of them. Earth One Superman is still selling well as a hardcover, so they see no reason to publish a softcover version at this point.

There may be some digital only comics in the future. Licensed titles such as World of Warcraft and Fringe tend to sell better digitally than in print, and Wayne said he could see a future where those comics would move to digital first publication.

Wayne also expressed some candid thoughts on the future print/digital mix:

When asked where he thought the industry will be in five years time, Wayne very honestly answered that he thought digital and print comics will co-exist. He expects digital sales to be 2-3 times higher, and that the physical books will be more suited to the collectors market. He also thinks special editions of graphic novels, with them moving more towards being art objects (such as the Absolute books) that can’t be translated to digital will become more common and be more of a focus for shops.

When a long comics shop focused exec like Wayne starts talking about alternate distribution channels, you know its serious. Well, you already knew that.


  1. Print, Digitial, and trade/ hardcover formats are the future of the industry. It would help if the content of the stories, no matter the format they’re presented in, were to be more varied as well.

    Some people just won’t read a Superman comic. Perhaps they might read a Lois Lane comic focusing on her starting out her journalistic career. Or Perry White in his first year as EIC at the Daily Planet.

    Or a book focused on the police in Gotham. Or a book focused on Commissoner Gordan. Like they’ve had in the past ( and somewhat present).

    Of course, no one can read a book they don’t know about.

    Marketing is the unspoken for quandry of the comic industry.