How Is That Line Holding At $2.99?

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Two years ago, DC launched a new initiative, Drawing The Line or Holding The Line At $2.99.

After a series of 22 page comics had risen in price to $3.99, while some remained at $2.99, DC decided to make a difference. Their monthly comics would become 20 page comics, all at $2.99. With the New 52 Relaunch, this stuck, though some titles with extra pages would be $3.99. After a little jiggling about, the standard set in, 32 page comics with 20 page stories for $2.99, 40 page comics with 28-30 page stories for $3.99, often a 20 page main story and a back up story.

But inflation, however low, would only allow such a situation to be maintained for so long.

In June, DC launched Superman Unchained as 32 pages for $4.99 and Batman/Superman #1 as 32 pages for $3.99. We’ve learnt since that Superman Unchained includes a four page foldout which may add extra content, but two dollars extra? Maybe it was a solicitation error…

It seems not. In July, it’s spreading.

Solicited as 32 page comics (read 22 pages of story) but charged at $3.99 are Justice League Of America #6, Justice League Dark #22, Superman Unchained #2, Batman/Superman #2.

All the other $3.99 titles are solicited with having 40 pages, or 28-30 story pages.

There’s a pattern here of the most popular titles gaining the price rise while keeping the story content low, while less popular titles stay at $2.99 for 20 pages or $3.99 for 28 pages.

Obviously we will know better when the titles ship. Maybe the new $3.99 books will have 22 pages as Marvel titles generally do?

Also… is Jeff Lemire off Constantine now? Only Ray Fawkes is listed as writer on Justice League Dark. And John Paul Leon, who started working on Animal Man with issue 20, has been missing from solicitations fro 21 and 22,  with Steve Pugh only listed with Francis Portela. Still, I’m never going to say no to Pugh Animal Man, no matter who he’s working with…

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