Runaways Digest #8… finally!
Just last week, Marvel finally published Runaways Digest Volume 8. This digest has been a long time in coming. It reprints Runaways #25-30, written by Joss Whedon (Buffy, Firefly, Astonishing X-Men).
Runaways Digest Volume 7 was published in August 2007. Seriously, nearly a two year wait between digests! The final issue in this collection (issue #30) was published a year ago. Previous digests were released every six months. So why did it take so long to reprint this into digest form?
Normally I wouldn’t have been so bothered by the wait, but in this case the wait was a result of Marvel squeezing every dime they could out of Joss Whedon’s name on this book. Up until issue #25, Runaways had been written by Brian K. Vaughn. Those early issues had been collected in several digests, which helped increase exposure in bookstores and with younger readers. The series did moderately well. Once Joss Whedon came on the book, Marvel capitalized on the opportunity. Rather than simply continuing to print digest-sized books, Marvel published these full-size collections first:
- Runaways: Dead End Kids Premiere Hardcover published July 2008
- Runaways: Dead End Kids Premiere Hardcover published July 2008 – Direct Market Edition
- Runaways: Dead End Kids Softcover published in December 2008
Once they’d squeezed every drop of cash out of these full-size collections, they finally decided to print a digest version. I know I’m griping, but it matters to me because I started with the digest-sized books. I love that format! Very compact and affordable! Highly portable and only $9.99 for six collected issues. It was hard to wait two years just to read this story. From a business perspective, I can understand what Marvel was trying to accomplish. However, it doesn’t mean as a reader that I’m happy about it.
Now that the Whedon issues are behind us, Marvel can return to printing the digest versions on a more regular basis. Right, Joe?