Here’s something rather unusual I’ve noticed about prices of certain Marvel comics recently. And no, it’s not another debate about the $3.99 price point…
In the UK, Hachette have just launched The Official Marvel Graphic Novels Collection, fortnightly hardbacks reprinting classic Marvel stories. Issue one reprints JMS/John Romita Jr’s Coming Home arc of Amazing Spider-Man, issue two is to feature the Dark Phoenix saga, and issue three will be Iron Man: Extremis.
So where can you buy it? And how much does it cost? Well, that depends.
It seems that, as with many partworks, the collection is limited to certain regions of the UK, presumably as a test to see how it sells. I scoured the newsagents of Wigan and Manchester to find a copy, but to no avail. I chanced upon one in Asda in Coventry, so it seems that the “Central” region are getting it, while “Granadaland” miss out.
But the testing seems to extend beyond publication region.
Bleeding Cool states that future issues would cost £9.99. The copy I bought stated that issue two would cost £5.99, with subsequent issues at £8.99. Who was right?
Visit http://www.graphicnovelcollection.com and you can subscribe to the series, with issue two at £6.99 and subsequent issues at £9.99.
Visit http://www.thegraphicnovelcollection.com (note the definite article) and you’ll find an identical website, but a not-so-identical subscription offer – issue two costs £5.99, with subsequent issues at £8.99.
Pre-internet, testing the sales of a partwork like this by rolling it out region-by-region, at different prices, made sense. These days – not so much.
I haven’t yet decided if I’m going to subscribe. £8.99 a fortnight isn’t cheap, but if you’re getting six comics’ worth of material plus extras in a nice hardback, it’s not such a bad deal. So if you’re interested, and you fancy subscribing, remember the “the”.