In many facets of content delivery, digital versions of everything have nearly roiled their printed counterparts. Blame it on economics, trending technology, or possibly a new generation demanding less paper products; either way, it’s happening, and has trickled down to the most collected item around: comic books.
Looking to gobble up a larger portion of comics’ market share are digitized versions of your favorite characters, with even more great reads being rolled out online only. Here’s what you can expect in the next decade in comic book innovations which could end up archived in the government’s comic book collection section.
Comics are content – content is online
We have all come across a comic book, a magazine article covering collector’s items, a newspaper article discussing digital heroes or a blog that keeps us coming back for more. There’s something to be said about engaging content that captures our attention and makes us look forward to the next piece of content. If you’re reading this, you’re probably also interested in making the connection between content and comics. Quite simply, stories with pictorial accommodation qualify as content.
The evolution of digital comics has been abetted by an obvious fact that comic buffs are, more often than not, early content magnates who are eager to embrace new media. Coupled with the fact social media takes up loads of our free time, and it’s easy to see why authors would much rather publish their comic series across digital mediums.
Entire storyline curves and creator runs are hampered by the fact they’re not digitized at all, or have cavernous pits expansive enough to store a few B-12 bombers. Whether the reasons behind these facts are due to specific titles being exclusive, are still yet to be digitized or require certain memberships is moot: denizens of comic cravers demand digital, and digital they are receiving.
Gabriel Creations Incorporated, headed by creator Gabriel Shaoolian, developed their epic comic series Biowars atop the digital mountain instead of opting for printing their battle-focused series. With the growth in popularity of worldwide buying and selling of digital space, this could instantly turn Biowars into the world’s most valuable digital comic space.
What makes Biowars unique within its niche? It doubles into this mysterious microcosmic world where one can actually learn about the human genome while being enamored by various characters fighting crime inside your immune system. Comics are useful content, indeed.
Pixels cannot be traded – yet.
Today’s breed of proactive comic book collectors, along with the market itself, affords store owners and individual sellers an incremental revenue for their most treasured printed comics. Enthusiasts – citing sentimental and monetary values of older comic collections – prefer holding onto their print comics in the hopes archivists or those craving retro items will someday make printed series popular again. Of course, others simply like paperbacks.
Supporters of digital comic series perceive newer digitized worlds as complimentary, rather than threatening, to traditional print publishing. Major comic book players, including industry leaders DC Comics and Marvel, along with many much smaller publishers, have opted to make their comics available digitally through ComiXology’s online platform and mobile apps. Oh, and television shows with intriguing fantasy caricatures? There’s a comic for that.
Comic books birthed memorabilia
Everyone owns something with sentimental value – and often times, those items have monetary value as well. From the sports fan with a football autographed by the star of their hometown team, or a puck signed by their favorite legend of the ice, to a drumstick from the drummer of the band you followed around the country; if you’re a fan of something, there’s a good chance you own memorabilia. Most comic book owners fall into the same category, with their prized Marvel comics often leading to other memorabilia – an ideology which digital comic books are yet to catch up with, at least at full capacity.
Opinions will vary. Preferences will remain indifferent. One fact that remains consistent, however, is the fact that digital comic books will probably outlast their printed counterparts – at least for now.