back to article Marvel launches digicomics initiative

Marvel today launched a "Digital Comics" initiative which will offer certain vintage content online for $9.99 a month or $4.99 a month if you stump up for an annual subscription. Among the stuff on offer is the "first original run of X-Men", and issues one to 100 of both Amazing Spider-Man and Fantastic Four, as well as "so …


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  1. Alan Parsons

    ...Can't download material

    I view such statements as a challenge..

  2. Torben Mogensen


    I'm pretty sure that Marvel will use watermarks that identify the user, so downloading and re-distributing the images will have to remove the watermarks, which will likely reduce quality. But reducing quality is not something that usually bothers pirates, so it will probably happen.

  3. Chris Wood


    So it appears that this is flash based and the application seems pretty good (basically a web version of CDisplay). Not as good as the online version of Ultimate Spiderman that was available a few years back (I think that site won some awards for best use of flash it was that good), but still OK for a first release.

    The quality of the images isn't very high (compared to the common scan-to-jpeg downloads you can find), but what's to stop people just taking screenshots and sticking them in a torrent?

    I think Marvel have missed the point here. I'd happily pay £5 a month for access to the back catalogue in a high quality downloadble format that I could take on the road (on my iPod touch for example).

  4. Jason Irwin
    Thumb Down


    Horrible interface, hard to use, poor rendering, waste of money.

    I use FireFox - maybe it works better on IE.

  5. Andy Gates

    +1 downloadability

    I want to take these comics and go - not that I'm necessarily bothering the badger with downloadable super-hotties in lycra at all, no no. Honest.

    It's the same old digital content / distribution / DRM argument in a new form (Ultimate DRM? Uncanny DRM?) I say let people share if they want, lock it to the player, and build a new generation fanbase for all that wonderful old classic stuff. Marvel's lawyers will probably say "lock it down" :(

  6. MrWeeble

    Gaps in story-lines

    Looks interesting, but I think I will wait until they have fleshed out their catalogue a little bit as they are not releasing the comics in order. This means you can't read an entire story-line, eg For Astonishing X-Men they have Issue #1, then skip to Issue #4, then #7 to #12

    I hope this is just because it is taking time to digitise it and not intentional to force you out to buy the collection in hard-copy

  7. scott

    @alan parsons

    'I view such statements as a challenge..'

    would that be the next Alan Parsons project?

    <looks for coat>


  8. Andrew Thomas

    Good on IE

    It looks very impressive on IE. But of course it's not as good as paper and ink.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    decompile flash

    I've not looked at it but it is normally possible to get the swf file and decomplie. this will give you either a set of files in an fla file or the url of the images if they are loaded dynamically.

    I might be nested in several swf files to avoid this type of attack, but the urls of the nested files can be found

  10. Anonymous Coward

    Missing the point....AGAIN

    WTF!? You'd think people would cotton onto the fact that we want to download the dratted things. We want to take them home, peruse them at our convenience and not be restricted by time delays.

    I LOVE comics. But I don't buy any at the moment as I don't have the space. If they were to finally start selling the recently released books, I'd buy them, as you can then burn them onto a disc to keep. (Lotsa books on a single disc, as opposed to lots of shelf space for the same number of books)

    Get with the program people! There's already a comic book reader that works perfectly out there. Now if only we can get the content to purchase and read.

    Oh, and quit with the monthly subs. I only wanna pay for what I read, not a monthly thing where I'm screwed when I don't like what's available that month.

  11. amanfromMars Silver badge

    Quantum Leaping ahead into the Near Future .....

    "I view such statements as a challenge.."

    That had me smile, Alan. ThanXXXXS. :-)

    It's a Marvellous dDevelopment though with 00dles of RAW Potential 42 Generation AI Currency with a Direct Plug-In to EUth .... Electonic Userbase and Virgin Source.

    And a Perfect Candidate for MinWin to Direct and Provision with Core a Dedicated Core Driver Server 4Core2Kernel Servering of Highly Enriched NEUKlearer and FailSafe BetaTested Source. .... HyperRadioProActive Content for Visualising Virtual Reality Program so that IT and Media can, with their Sharing, Create as if AIMagical Dream.

    That is the Sort of Magical Mystery Turing Projects which are Readily available from Merlin, the MetaPhysicians DLL Shelves.

    Priceless Post Modern Tomes of Royal and Ancient Wisdoms Immaculately Transcribed through AI and ITs Semantic Binary Wizardry for Delectable Digital Depiction.... 3D........***( and this is a further refinement/application as Minwin Architecture and Methodology mutates into other Systems .... via h3g3 [which be the BBCDNA Upgraded Root Plug In to Core IntelAIgently Designed Services])

    *** An Available Option for Derivative Hedges and Home Bets.

    And that implied question to "Eric Traut, a distinguished Microsoft engineer" ....

  12. James Summerson


    I'd imagine some of the available flash rippers might be turned to use - but the mere fact that Alpha Flight are in there, along with the Inhumans makes it a nice use of £30 for me.

    Could someone with enough cash / influence try and do this for Miracleman / Marvelman?

  13. Anonymous Coward

    Among the stuff on offer is the "first original run of X-Men",

    perhaps marvel might be surprised to learn that the first X-men and spiderman comics have been available online for quite a long time, in a very handy CBR format too.

  14. Morely Dotes

    @ Jason Irwin

    "I use FireFox - maybe it works better on IE."

    Then it's not HTML, is it?

    However, I guarantee I can download it. I won't bother, but the command line is less than 60 characters.

  15. Matt Bryant Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    It must go downloadable!

    I would pay to read some of the old comics again, but I would want to be able to download for my money so I can go back and re-read at my leisure. I would even be tempted by a monthly all-you-can-eat download package, but only if I could download the offerings. When I bought the old comics, I didn't have to return them after I read them once, so why should it be different for an electronic format? A few years ago, I wrote to Maxwell's mafioso suggesting they released the complete back issues of 2000AD or Judge Dredd on CD-ROM - say a whole year's issues on one CD. The answer I got back amounted to "why?"....

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