A while back, I logged some week-to-week posts on DC’s digital reprint program through Comixology. It’s been a while, and their digital offerings have matured, so I thought I’d take another look at what they’re adding each week. Currently, they seem to be doing about 30 books a week. I might not list all the issue numbers going forward – if the 90s Superman titles continue moving forward at two of each a week, there’s not much value in listing each issue. But let’s take a look at this week’s, and let’s see where the patterns take us, shall we?
90s Superman: DC is following the 90s Superman titles (soon to be the 2000s Superman, as this week’s titles are from December 1999) pretty quickly, giving us 8 issues of the books every week. There’s a lot of material to get through, but that’s still an admirable clip. We may only have a few more weeks of this, judging by Action Comics (the one title of the bunch that doesn’t change its numbering and continues for a long while) – 761 is the most recent issue, and Action already seems to be in the digital library from 769 on. Superman, Adventures of Superman and Superman: Man of Steel have bigger gaps, though.
Action Comics 760, 761
Adventures of Superman 574, 575
Superman 152, 153
Man of Steel 95, 96
Arion: 11, 12
DC has been adding two issues of Arion: Lord of Atlantis a week for the last 6 weeks. There are 35 issues and a special, so there's a way to go before the series is completed.
DC Comics Presents: 75, 76
DCCP started out at a faster pace, but has been going two a week for a little while now. There are about 20 issues to go. Bonus: More Arion this week, in issue 75!
Guy Gardner: Warrior: 33
11 issues to go.
Huntress: 19, 4-issue 1994 series
We wrap up the Cavalieri/Staton ongoing that introduced Helena Bertinelli, and then power through a Chuck Dixon mini from 1994. Will Huntress return next week, or will we move on?
Justice League America (Bwa-ha-ha) 51, 52
This one has a ways to go before having everything available.
Four more issues till it’s all there!
Mister Miracle: 23-25
This wraps up the 70s run – Kirby and then Marshall Rogers, it’s all there! (I think DC also recently wrapped the 70s Return of the New Gods run, too.)
Superman (Bronze Age): 233
This is an interesting one. The Kryptonite Nevermore cover – I’m surprised it wasn’t available before this. Will DC continue from here? Their 70s Superman offerings on Comixology are paltry.
Wanderers: 7, 8
This 80s Legion spinoff ran 13 issues, so we’re almost there.
Wonder Woman (Silver Age): 130, 131
DC has been making silver age Wonder Woman stories available, probably wishing to expand their catalog in anticipation of the movie. At this point the silver age issues go from 112-131, with a couple of gaps.
Swamp Thing (Diggle/Dysart run): 25
4 more issues to go.
This Vertigo sci-fi series lasted 8 issues. I don’t remember it at all.
That’s a pretty exhaustive look at this week’s offerings. Next week, I’ll probably just note new additions (what will replace Mister Miracle? The '89 and '96 series have already been collected, so we might be in for something new. And there might be more Huntress comics that haven't been reprinted yet, but Comixology has a bunch of them listed already, and the Bat-universe is so sprawling it's tough to search), unexpected omissions, breaks from the patterns, and go forward from there.
And to make things easy to follow:
Week 2. (April 6, 2017)
Week 3 (April 13, 2017)
Week 4 (April 20, 2017)
Week 5 (April 27, 2017)
Week 6 (May 4, 2017)
Week 7 (May 11, 2017)
Week 8 (May 18, 2017)
Week 9 (May 25, 2017)
Week 10 (June 1, 2017) -- All the golden age Wonder Woman goodness!
Week 11 (June 8, 2017)
Week 12 (June 15, 2017)
Week 13 (June 22, 2017)
Week 14 (June 29, 2017)
Week 15 (July 6, 2017)
Week 16 (July 13, 2017) -- Our Worlds at War! Underworld Unleashed!
Week 17 (July 20, 2017) -- The Great Ten! More Wonder Woman!
Week 18 (July 27, 2017) -- Batman Confidential and Deathblow? Young Heroes in Love?? Doom Patrol!
Week 19 (Aug 3, 2017) -- Some Bronze-age Batman!
Week 20 (Aug 10, 2017) -- Loeb/Sale Challengers begins!
Week 21 (Aug 17, 2017) -- Silver Age Challs!
MIDWEEK SALE BLAST (Aug 22, 2017): Wildstorm!
Week 22 (Aug 24, 2017) -- Holding pattern...
Week 23 (Aug 31, 2017) -- chugging along
Week 24 (Sept 7, 2017) -- Same old, but with newer Challengers
Week 25 (Sept 14, 2017) -- Baron/Jones Deadman debuts
Week 26 (Sept 21, 2017) -- Holding steady, with more Deadman
Week 27 (Sept 28, 2017) -- Deadman in Action Comics Weekly?
Week 28 (Oct 5, 2017) -- A slow swerve into Batman
Week 29 (Oct 5, 2017) -- Doom Patrol finishes in the smallest week ever
In Justice League of America #206 (S'82), Thomas Parker, the son in the original "Space Museum" stories, is now an adult and brings his son, Gardner (Ha! Ha!) to the Space Museum and tells him stories!
He also tells his son that they are descended from a Justice League member but doesn't say which one.
I don't think that plot thread was ever expanded upon, Philip, and that might indeed be the last we see of the Space Museum, pre-crisis.
I've been down for the count with a cold since Thanksgiving, and haven't updated this thread...only to discover that Comixology hasn't updated DC's backlist releases either, with the ones from two weeks ago still in the New and Noteworthy section. So maybe we've skipped a week altogether... or maybe next week's releases will be doubled!
I'm just going to write this up quick, since I've seen the list for later on this week. Here's what we were scheduled for on Thanksgiving. I thought it hadn't arrived, but then I looked at the individual titles: They're there, but the "New and Noteworthy" lineup never changed. Anyway, I'm behind the eight ball on other work right now, but here's the quick and dirty version.
Action Comics 312-315 Continuing the Silver Age run. Each issue has a Superman lead and a Supergirl backup (possibly why they're being reprinted, considering her current popularity). Also of note: Superman 314 has the story "The Day Superman Became the Flash," which is one I definitely need to read.
Detective Comics 115-119 Continuing the late Golden Age run. Backups staring Air Wave, Slam Bradly, the Boy Commandos, and the first three have a feature called "Three-Ring Binks." Kinda curious about that. A circus feature? They're only 4 or 5 pages each.
Infinity, Inc. 26-31 Continuing where we left off. Issue 30 is the "In Memoriam" issue after the Last Days of the JSA one-shot, which I remember as being quite moving at the time.
Lobo/Deadman: The Brave and the Bald (a one-shot from 1995) Considering the recent reprints of Lobo and Deadman, this was inevitable.
Secret Origins 16-18, 21, 22 (piggybacking a couple of issues that were already there, these feature origins for Hourman & Warlord; Adam Strange and Dr. Occult; Golden Age Green Lantern and Creeper; Jonah Hex and Black Condor; and various of DC's Manhunters)
The Brave and the Bold 116-121 (Batman teams up with the Spectre, Sgt. Rock, Man-Bat, Kamandi, and the Metal Men; several of these are Giant issues, featuring repirnts of the Teen Titans, Viking Prince, Silent Knight, Secret Six, Green Arrow, Blackhawk, and a Batman/Wonder Woman team-up)
Hmmm... that wasn't as quick as I'd intended.
Rob Staeger (Grodd Mod) said:
the first three have a feature called "Three-Ring Binks." Kinda curious about that. A circus feature? They're only 4 or 5 pages each.
The DC Golden Age Who's Whose has a sample page. It was a comedy feature about a theatrical agent.
Neat! Interesting art style!
Here's another quick rundown of DC's Comixology backlist for this week:
Action Comics: 316-318, 320, 321. Continuing the consecutive reprinting of this Silver Age run. For some reason issue 319 isn't included, even though "The Condemned Superman" is a continuation of the Lexor story begun in 318. One for the Gap List,I suppose!
Speaking of the Gap List, DC fills a few gaps in its 80s Batman run with issues 339, 342, and 348. 342 fills a single-issue hole in the run; 338 and 349 are still at large.
The late Golden Detective Comics continues apace, with 120-123.
We get more Infinity Inc, with issues 32-35. The series ran through issue 53, so we still have a few more weeks to go if this pace keeps up.
We also get four more Secret Origins issues: 23, 26, 27, and 29, featuring origins for Floronic Man/Guardians of the Universe, Black Lightning/Miss America, Zatara/Zatanna, and Power of the Atom/Mr. America/Red Tornado (Ma Hunkle). For some reason issue 25 (Legion/Golden Age Atom) gets skipped.
Superman 34 is reprinted! It's the first issue of Superman we've seen for a while, and the only Golden Age issue reprinted aside from issue 1. No idea what might have spurred this particular issue to get reprinted, but the first story is about two of Clark's buddies fighting over which branch of the armed forces is better, and in the second story Lois & Clark visit a crooked fortune teller.
And finally we've got six issues of The Brave & the Bold: 124, and 126-130. (125 was already on the service.) Batman's co-stars are Sgt. Rock, Aquaman, Wildcat, Mister Miracle, Green Arrow, and "4 Famous Co-stars."
So, 27 books in all, and the most recent of them were published in the mid- to late 80s... not a bad week!
We've got 19 items this week -- let's give them a quick run through.
A plurality of the books star Lobo: The complete 6-issue Lobo Unbound miniseries from 2003 (by Keith Giffen and Alex Horley) and the Lobo: Blazing Chains of Love one-shot by Giffen, Alan Grant, and Denys Cowan. I still wonder what Lobo will be up to in other media, since he's garnering so much attention on Comixology. I think he'd be a perfect villain for Supergirl.
Then we've got 5 more Brave & the Bold issues, numbers 131-135. Batman's guest-stars are, respectively, Wonder Woman & Catwoman, Richard Dragon: Kung-Fu Fighter, Deadman, Green Lantern, and the Metal Men. They're consecutive from the issues we've gotten the past few weeks, but a couple of weeks ago, we skipped over B&B #122, guest-starring Swamp Thing; I'll put it on the Gap List. Brave & Bold lasted through issue 200, so there's still plenty to go, even though there are about a dozen more issues sprinkled intermittently throughout the upcoming 65 issues.
Infinity Inc. gets a massive throttling this week, releasing only one issue, #36. The series ran till issue 54. This is the second-to-last Todd McFarlane-drawn issue, which is followed by some fill-ins, and then a run by Vince Argondezzi.
The remaining six books star Superman or Batman. From 1945, we have Superman 35 and 36 -- which has a gloriously old-fashioned cover of Superman interfering in Lois's kitchen. Is he defrosting the freezer, or just busting the refrigeration unit with his pinkie? And why does Lois keep bananas in her refrigerator, anyway? These two follow on the heels of last week's Superman 34. (Superman 2-33 remain unavailable as singles, though I think many of those stories are in the golden age collections by now.)
Then from 1947, we get Detective Comics 124 and 125 -- another two issues in the run that began with issue 113 some weeks ago. Batman & Robin, backed up by Air Wave, the Boy Commandos, and Slam Bradley.
And then we get Action Comics 319 and 322. It looks like skipping over issue 319 last week was an oversight, corrected here. Superman stories, backed up by Supergirl.
No new Secret Origins this week.
The DC Comixology sale is based around NY Times bestsellers, so there are no single issues this week, but a lot of collections, particularly Superman, Batman, Sandman, and early New 52 collections.
Man, I'm running behind on these lately!
Of course, my enthusiasm is dampened a bit by the continued prominence of Lobo this week. Of the 19 books released, the Main Man is in more than a third of them -- the 4-issue Lobo's Back series and the 4 issues of Lobo: A Contract on Gawd (a miniseries named to parody the Will Eisner graphic novel A Contract With God, hailed as the first graphic novel, even though it's a collection of short stories).
But then there are two issues released that cover oversights marked on The Gap List: Batman 338 and Secret Origins 25 (featuring the Legion of Superheroes and the Golden Age Atom). So it's nice to see that someone's looking over what they've overlooked before.
So what else do we have? The recent usual suspects, basically -- from the Silver Age, Action Comics #323, the latest in the run they've been reprinting. We also get two Golden Age Superman comics, issues 37 and 38.
Also from the Golden Age are two more Detective Comics issues in a row, #126 and 127.
Then we have a single issue of Infinity Inc -- #27, the origin of Northwind. Also, I believe it might be the last issue with Todd McFarlane art in the series.
We've also got three issues of Brave & the Bold: #136, 138, and 139, guest starring Green Arrow & the Metal men, Mister Miracle, and Hawkman. Number 137, guest-starring The Demon, has been skipped for no reason I can think of. The Gap Listgiveth, the Gap List taketh away.
No idea what's coming next week. There's still plenty to go with Detective, Action, Superman, Batman, and Brave & Bold... and if Infinity Inc stays at one a week, that will still take us into spring. But how many more Lobo series can there be, I ask you? Will it ever end?
Oh, and DC's sale this week is all Vertigo material. This is a great chance to dip into series that no one seems to talk about any more, like Sandman Mystery Theatre, and to check out short runs of books you might have overlooked. A hidden gem from the last year or two was Last Gang In Town -- a fun punk heist caper with a silly, MAD magazine sensibility. I really dug it.
Number 137, guest-starring The Demon, has been skipped for no reason I can think of.
The art, perhaps? The issue was drawn by John Calnan and Bob McLeod rather than Aparo.
My guess is the B&W proofs survive for most 1970s comics, but perhaps in some cases there's a problem like tearing, water damage or whatever, and they need to be cleaned up.
Good call -- that's probably the case. I think a lot of the Aparo books have already been remastered for collected editions, but this one wouldn't have been.
Out of nowhere, we get an eerie week on Comixology! Let's take a look:
First up are five late-era issues of House of Mystery, 291-295. The "I, Vampire" series debuted in HoM 290, which is already on the service -- this continue that run (along with the other horror stories in each issue). (And if you're interested in I, Vampire, a trade collecting the whole original series is on sale this week for $5.)
Then we move from vampires to ghosts, with Strange Adventures 205-210, the first six appearances of Deadman! Again, this has been reprinted (a lot, since it has Neal Adams art), but there are other stories in these issues that haven't seen the light of day for ages.
And then, keeping up the occult trend, we get five issues of Jack Kirby's Demon (issues 2-6, with the first issue already on the service). "Gone, gone, the form of print! Make the Demon byte and bit!"
Rounding it out, we've got Superman Adventures Annual 1 and Batman Adventures Annual 1, issues that were probably oversights when the rest of the runs were reprinted. (And I hadn't realized, but the regular issues of those titles are all regularly priced at 99 cents. That's a steal -- those are some great comics!)
And then, seemingly out of left field, is Action Comics 521. It's not part of a regular reprinting of Action Comics, and has a lot of open real estate between it and the comics on either side of it. And then you realize it's the first appearance of Vixen, one of the stars of Legends of Tomorrow. (Well, her grandmother is, anyway.) So that seems like a no-brainer.
That's it for this week -- but after a few weeks of samey-same stuff (and a lot of Lobo!), this was a really pleasant surprise!
Oh, and DC is having a HUGE sale this week and next (through Jan 4), featuring a ton of trades & single comics across the board. Which, among other things, means I can continue my collection of Rebirth Blue Beetle for 99 cents a pop. And wrap up my read of the Grayson title, too!