Top Cow Comics is set to start releases trades in a new format. They're going to offer these at lower prices in the direct market (meaning comic book stores versus the major book chains or "newstands"). With the first volume, you get six issues for only five bucks. That's crazy. Top Cow is really going out of its way to make things easier for their readers. Maybe other companies will see how this is a good move. They won't make money on back issues. Cheaper books mean people would be willing to buy more. They become familiar with the character then they'll continue buying the current issues.
In January 2008, Top Cow Productions will give new and lapsed readers and retailers an opportunity to rediscover Witchblade, the ongoing flagship title for the publisher. Top Cow will be re-branding the entire trade paperback line for Witchblade and unveiled the first trade cover today as well as a page count increase.
Witchblade Volume 1 is slated for release in January 2008 and will contain the initial storyline by current series writer, Ron Marz (First Born, Samurai: Heaven & Earth) entitled "Witch Hunt." The six issue story is an ideal jumping point for readers interested in discovering the modern Witchblade series. The first volume collects Witchblade #80-85 written by Marz and drawn by Mike Choi (X-Men, X-23: Target X ). Subsequent volumes will follow with volumes 2-4 being released in the first half of 2008. The new trade collections will feature a redesigned trade dress, brand new painted covers by upcoming Witchblade ongoing artist Stjepan Sejic (First Born), new introductions, and a new Witchblade logo by Eisner award-winner Todd Klein. Most noteworthy will be Top Cow's aggressive introductory pricing for Volume 1, available exclusively in comic shops for only $4.99. The book market version will carry the regular $9.99 SRP on the cover.
"The Witch Hunt storyline was really my introduction to Witchblade as a writer, and I wrote it to be an introduction for the readers as well," commented author Marz. "The arc is very much a ground-floor read, so the collection should be a serve as a great starting point at an amazing price. I don't think you can get much more new-reader friendly than that."
"With over 100 issues of Witchblade out there it can be intimidating for new fans to try out the series," commented Filip Sablik, Vice President of Marketing & Sales for Top Cow. "By re-branding the trade program we're letting fans and retailers know, this is the place to jump on board. The Ron Marz run on Witchblade has been one of the best reviewed in the history of the title."
"Marz has cut away the fat without destroying the history." Grade A – Paperback Reader
"The Witchblade-verse is at its most newbie-friendly point in years." 4 Out of 5 – Silver Bullet Comics
"Don't be intimidated by this series having over 100 issues so far. Now is as good a time as any to get on board." Grade A – Judgement Day, Comic World News
"There is no greater accomplishment for a writer than leaving a reader wanting more, and I want more. Witchblade is highly recommended." – Suspended Animation
Additional information regarding Witchblade can be found at www.topcow.com.