Publisher, Dan Buckley, announced Marvel’s intention to go digital at the New York Comic Con in late February, but no timetables or formats were announced. You’d like to think Marvel gets it, but if you go to their website, there are no links to purchase anything Captain America related, just descriptions of previous products and upcoming comics. If you click on the subscription link on a Captain America page, you will find that Captain America is not one of the titles available for subscription. There’s a video of Stephen Colbert on the home page, discussing the death of Captain America, and no way to purchase any of the material. Clearly, there is money being left on the table. History would suggest their Stephen King comics would also benefit from digital distribution. King was selling downloads in large numbers before it was widely accepted.
This is the point where comics retailers start throwing up their hands in protest, afraid that Marvel is going to steal their income and sell direct. In actuality, they should be concerned about ToyWiz.com. Marvel has Google ads on their website and over the weekend, ToyWiz had one such ad, which if you clicked on it, offered you your choice of Captain America #25 covers for $24.99 or $29.99. At least someone was making money selling products off Marvel’s website. (Marvel would have gotten some advertising money for this.) [Hat tip to Doug at http://talkinthetalk.blogspot.com/ for the sharp eyes and quick click.]