It looks like DC Comics are using the Omnibus format as their current way to collect classic material in chronological order.  In the past, there have been the Archives series (hardcover, full color), the Showcase Presents series (softcover, black and white, usually twice the page count of an Archive), and the Chronicles series (softcover, full color, smaller page count than an Archive).  In the past few years, all of these lines have been quietly shuttered, and now DC is releasing Omnibus collections in both hardcover and softcover formats.

As you would expect, the Omnibus hardcovers are huge.  Two Silver Age volumes collected the first 76 issues of JLA (along with Brave and Bold 28-30 and Mystery in Space 75), for example.  Earlier this year, DC released JLA: The Bronze Age Omnibus Volume 1, collecting JLA # 77-113.  That's almost half of the original series collected in this way, which for a fan like me is great news.  The JLA Archives had 10 volumes, collected the first 93 issues, and the first volume and last volume were released twenty-two years apart.  The first JLA Omnibus came out in 2014.

DC is also releasing these collections in trade paperbacks with a smaller page count than the hardcovers.  The great thing is that these TPBs collect more issues than the Archives did!  The material collected in the first JLA Silver Age Omnibus has all been released in 3 TPBs.

I have the first JLA Silver Age TPB, and I loved it!  I also have the first JLA Showcase Presents, but I find that without color, I just don't enjoy the stories as much as I could.  Actually, I find I enjoy most Silver Age comics more in color versus reading them in Showcase Presents and Essential Marvel.

I wonder how many of the rest of you are buying and reading these Omnibus collections, and what you think of the format.

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"...but where do you draw that line?"

Here's how it breaks down (roughly) or me:

GOLDEN AGE

1950s

SILVER AGE

1970s

BRONZE AGE

Anything beyond that is "Modern Age"

Regarding an Adam Strange discussion, if someone else wants to start one I will commit to following/reading along; if it's up to me to lead it, it will have to wait until my Green Lantern discussion gets to issue #75 at least.

Just to prove that I'm not always negative, I just got the Spectre Omnibus, and moved it to the front of the line, and although I've only read the first couple of stories, they are as good as I remember from decades ago. I'm impressed that for the mid 60s they were probably as "creepy" as Fox thought he could get away with (and in spite of the fact that Anderson was probably not really the best artist for this kind of story), and based on my dim memories I'm anticipating that things will only get better.

I have been working my way through The Wrath of the Spectre omnibus, too. So far I've read through #4 of his solo series and plan to post something more comprehensive when I've finished (but my priority right now is Green Lantern). I had heard very negative things about the '60s series, but so far I'm really enjoying it. Some time ago I bought the Essential edition just so I'd have it in some format, but was never motivated to read it in b&w. I'm glad now I waited for the color.

Waiting to read-along on Adam Strange is fine with me. Reading his omnibus isn't the only thing I'm doing, so I'll get a bit of a head start.

CAPTAIN AMERICA GOLDEN AGE OMNIBUS: Volume 2 has been solicited for June release. It will collect Captain America Comics #13-25. So what, right? Those issues have already been collected in Masterworks format. But it makes me hopeful that third and fourth volumes collecting the elusive #26-75 will be forthcoming sometime. (I'll be happy with a third, but it's the fourth I'm really looking forward to.) 

What makes the fourth particularly compelling? I'm not aware of anything unusual in the later books besides Golden Girl replacing Bucky but this is way outside my area of comics knowledge.

Jeff of Earth-J said:

CAPTAIN AMERICA GOLDEN AGE OMNIBUS: Volume 2 has been solicited for June release. It will collect Captain America Comics #13-25. So what, right? Those issues have already been collected in Masterworks format. But it makes me hopeful that third and fourth volumes collecting the elusive #26-75 will be forthcoming sometime. (I'll be happy with a third, but it's the fourth I'm really looking forward to.) 

"What makes the fourth particularly compelling? I'm not aware of anything unusual in the later books besides Golden Girl replacing Bucky..."

That, for one thing. I want to read the issue (#66) in which Lavender shoots Bucky and Cap replaces him with golden Girl. I have read "The Private Life of Steve Rogers" (#59, which, metatextually and retroactively, I consider to be the first "Jeff Mace" issues), but only on microfiche. Also, I would like to read some of the "between" issues when Stan Lee is presumably more polished. Also, I'd like to "witness" the transformation from "Captain America" to "Captain America's Weird Tales." 

Thank you. That makes good sense.

Jeff of Earth-J said:

"What makes the fourth particularly compelling? I'm not aware of anything unusual in the later books besides Golden Girl replacing Bucky..."

That, for one thing. I want to read the issue (#66) in which Lavender shoots Bucky and Cap replaces him with golden Girl. I have read "The Private Life of Steve Rogers" (#59, which, metatextually and retroactively, I consider to be the first "Jeff Mace" issues), but only on microfiche. Also, I would like to read some of the "between" issues when Stan Lee is presumably more polished. Also, I'd like to "witness" the transformation from "Captain America" to "Captain America's Weird Tales." 

Apparently, "The Princess in the Atom" in #25 was by Ray Cummings and continued in #26. Martin O'Hearn has a post on Ray Cummings's work on "Captain America" here.

"Golden Girl" from #66 was written by William Woolfolk. His work in the period is documented by payment records he kept, and O'Hearn has transcribed many of these and matched many of the stories. He's also posted on Bill Finger's having contributed to the feature in the period, but there the evidence is stylistic. He thinks Don Rico wrote for the 1950s revival. 

The "N. Korok" who was credited with the scripts for the Iron Man stories in Tales of Suspense #52-#53 was Rico. The Leon Lazarus who wrote the Giant-Man story in Tales to Astonish #64 was another Atlas veteran. That was his real name. Wikipedia's page on him explains how he came to do the story.

Ernie Hart [H. E. Huntley] was another Atlas veteran. I think Robert Bernstein [R. Burns] and Jerry Siegel [Joe Carter] likely were too. In the mid-50s Marvel was one of the biggest companies in terms of output. The artists Lee brought to Marvel as it began doing well were people who'd worked for Marvel in the Atlas period: John Romita, John Buscema, Werner Roth, John Severin, Gene Colan.

I remember Roy Thomas saying that one of the things he admired about Stan was that if he got you to work for Marvel with promises you'd have enough business to pay your rent, by god, he'd see you got it.

Luke Blanchard said:

Apparently, "The Princess in the Atom" in #25 was by Ray Cummings and continued in #26. Martin O'Hearn has a post on Ray Cummings's work on "Captain America" here.

"Golden Girl" from #66 was written by William Woolfolk. His work in the period is documented by payment records he kept, and O'Hearn has transcribed many of these and matched many of the stories. He's also posted on Bill Finger's having contributed to the feature in the period, but there the evidence is stylistic. He thinks Don Rico wrote for the 1950s revival. 

The "N. Korok" who was credited with the scripts for the Iron Man stories in Tales of Suspense #52-#53 was Rico. The Leon Lazarus who wrote the Giant-Man story in Tales to Astonish #64 was another Atlas veteran. That was his real name. Wikipedia's page on him explains how he came to do the story.

Ernie Hart [H. E. Huntley] was another Atlas veteran. I think Robert Bernstein [R. Burns] and Jerry Siegel [Joe Carter] likely were too. In the mid-50s Marvel was one of the biggest companies in terms of output. The artists Lee brought to Marvel as it began doing well were people who'd worked for Marvel in the Atlas period: John Romita, John Buscema, Werner Roth, John Severin, Gene Colan.

"I want to read the issue..."

You know, after I posted yesterday I remembered that these issues are available online and I have read some of them. but reading something on a screen is so antithetical to the act of "reading" (AFAIAC) that I didn't really retain them. I don't want just to read them, I want to read them on paper

I'll read some stuff online, but an awful lot of ebooks go on my kindle to die of neglect.

However my library's streaming service has a lot of graphic novels only available that way so I compromise. Sure as heck preferable to spending my own money on The Three Jokers.

Jeff of Earth-J said:

"I want to read the issue..."

You know, after I posted yesterday I remembered that these issues are available online and I have read some of them. but reading something on a screen is so antithetical to the act of "reading" (AFAIAC) that I didn't really retain them. I don't want just to read them, I want to read them on paper

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