Comixology Unlimited Offers Several Issues of Usagi Yojimbo
If you haven’t been paying attention to the world of comic books lately, then you might be surprised to learn that one of the most popular services for digital comics has just unveiled a new monthly program. Comixology, now owned by Amazon, has decided to create a subscription service known as Comixology Unlimited. For $5.99 a month, you will have access to thousands of different comics, graphic novels and manga titles. The best way to describe this subscription service is simply to call it Netflix for the comic book industry.
Unfortunately, despite the potential positive impact of Comixology Unlimited, a lot of people in the comic book industry have been crying foul and complaining about a potential loss in profits. To be honest, I don’t really believe that this will result in lost revenue. Personally, I believe that this could actually increase revenue for a lot of publishers. This system has the opportunity to introduce entirely new audiences to long running comic book series that they might not have otherwise discovered. Some of these items don’t sell very well as it is, so you aren’t necessarily taking a big risk.
At a price point of only $5.99 a month, you have to figure that quite a few readers will be entirely new to the content you are providing. If those readers enjoy your content, they will be more likely to continue purchasing it once they’ve read everything offered on Comixology Unlimited. This could ultimately lead to better sales over all, and it could bring in a wider audience as well. A subscription service for comic books could also be an excellent opportunity for older comics that have all but been forgotten to see a resurgence in popularity.
As an example, I present to you the selection of Usagi Yojimbo comic books provided by Comixology Unlimited. As of right now, Classic Usagi Yojimbo issues 1-4 and issues 1-15 from the first volume of the original Usagi Yojimbo comics are all offered through this service. Considering the individual price of this content, readers actually stand to save a lot of money while discovering the character’s roots. With a story this good, it wouldn’t surprise me if a lot of new readers got hooked to the classic Usagi Yojimbo story. The more readers get hooked, the more likely they will be to continue buying issues.
In other words, although the creators and publishers don’t stand to make as much money from Comixology Unlimited as they would have initially from individual sales, the potential gained revenue from newer audiences could more than make up for that. I can easily see this being used as a “try before you buy” service, and that could actually introduce a much wider audience to the work of either burgeoning or well established authors and writers. In the same way that Netflix has forever changed the way that people watch television and film, Comixology Unlimited could be the beginning of a movement that changes how people read comic books, graphic novels and manga.
I was one of the first supporters of Netflix, and I have been a subscriber for around ten years now. Needless to say, I couldn’t be happier to see their work influencing other industries to attempt similar changes, and I have high hopes that this may even keep several much beloved publishers in business. Sales are dwindling for a lot of independent publishers, and this could be exactly what they need to not only stay afloat, but potentially improve sales over time. In a world where all of our favorite comic books are hitting the big screen and making millions of dollars, it seems fitting that we should return to the source and rediscover the inspiration for those silver screen heroes.
If you’re the type that likes to try before you buy, Comixology Unlimited could be an excellent opportunity to discover stories that you might otherwise have passed over. Most of us don’t have a lot of money to devote to buying comics, so being able to find what we really like without spending too much is going to make a huge difference. If you’ve been holding off on Usagi Yojimbo, this could be a great opportunity to discover the character for a very low price – just don’t be surprised if he gets his hooks into you!