Flash by Geoff Johns Omnibus and more DC Summer 2011 collections

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Source blog has a short list of collections coming from DC Comics in summer 2011. These include Batman: Bruce Wayne -- The Road Home, Batman: Knight and Squire, Batman & Robin Vol. 3, Green Arrow, Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors, Brightest Day, and Superman and Wonder Woman respectively by J. Michael Straczynski.

Save the rest, however -- the big headline here is a Flash by Geoff Johns hardcover omnibus.

Flash and Bang
There's long been speculation that something like this might be in the offing, buffered by the fact that a good number of the collections of Johns's much-loved, much-acclaimed Flash run are out of print. At least, this suggests, they were out of print for a reason.

For those keeping score at home, the omnibus collects Flash #164-176, which is the Wonderland and Blood Will Run collections. Both the stories from Flash Secret Files #3 and Flash: Iron Heights were included in the latest printing of Blood Will Run; the Flash: Our Worlds at War special is previously uncollected.

I am thrilled that it looks like DC intends to go all the way through Geoff Johns's Flash run. If we're at about two collections per volume, however, that means we're probably looking at four volumes total for this omnibus series -- volume two collecting Rogues and Crossfire, volume three collecting Blitz and Ignition, and volume four collecting The Secret of Barry Allen and Rogue War.

And that's if and only if DC intends to collect only Johns's Wally West work. The series title is "Flash by Geoff Johns" -- whether at the end we'll start to see omnibus collections of Johns's Barry Allen series as well remains to be seen.

I really enjoyed Johns's Wally West run, so I'm thrilled as punch it's getting the hardcover treatment. I'd be just as happy to see a Flash by Mark Waid omnibus for that matter, too.

Hardcover Times
The one other thing to note in DC's release (aside from the fact that, right now, they have Azrael issues listed for Brightest Day) is that all of these, with the exception of a Green Lantern: Secret Origin reprint, are hardcovers.

If there was ever any doubt that the era of hardcover is upon us, note that Wonder Woman has gone back to hardcover, as has the new iteration of Green Arrow, and also the new series Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors; we saw in last week's 2011 advance solicitations that Birds of Prey is rolling over to hardcover, too.

I'd bet that with new Teen Titans writer J. T. Krul, we'll see hardcover over there as well. There's no escaping that hardcover is the new trade paperback -- just about every series I believe that DC can release in hardcover first, probably they will from now on. I like the durability of the hardcovers, to be sure, but the price -- oh, the price. And anyone choosing to "wait-for-the-paperback" is going to face a challenge now, as more and more of these books come out in hardcover first; that wait will just be longer.

My plan? As I've said before, the books I'm excited about I'll buy in hardcover, but I'm going to be more critical right now as to whether I'm "really excited" or just "kind of excited" about a book, and those "kind of" books are more likely to get the axe. That's where I've personally got to draw the line.

But ...
But, hey, Flash by Geoff Johns omnibus, eh? Exciting stuff, and I look forward to more of the same on the way.

Couple of links to other reactions:
* Speed Force: Flash Omnibus to Reprint Geoff Johns’ Wally West Run
* Robot 6: DC announces Geoff Johns Flash omnibus
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  1. As I mentioned on your Facebook page, I find the timing of this ironic as just this week I finished tracking down the last out-of-print Flash book that I needed on eBay.

    Based on previous multi-volume omnibus releases (I'm thinking Jack Kirby and Starman), how long was it in between volumes? By the time the 4th volume of this comes out, will there be enough issues of the new Barry Allen series to collect?

    Also, how long before they put out a "Green Lantern by Geoff Johns" omnibus series? :-)

  2. I was talking to a reader about after-market trade paperback value recently; maybe you can resell those out-of-print trades now and save up for the hardcover (is that blasphemy?).

    My estimate (post updated above) is four volumes, with about two of the trade paperbacks per volume. That'd put Blitz and Ignition together, which seems about right.

    Now, figure it's about eight years since the first Johns/Flash collection, Blood Will Run (wow, has it been that long?), so a Johns/Green Lantern omnibus might still be some time away. I think it's a good possibility though, personally.

  3. I actually feel kinda proud of the fact I called this - though I am a bit surprised. I thought Barry Allen was the only Flash in town - I imagined that DC would flood the market with Barry Allen stories, particularly with rumours of the movie to come.

  4. I second the MARK WAID OMNIBUS though....I'd even go for trades by Waid. His run is the one which made me stand up and take notice of John's Flash. High points: THE RETURN OF BARRY ALLEN, TERMINAL VELOCITY, HELL TO PAY, HYPERTIME (I dunno what to call the last arc)

  5. A lot of the hardcovers are also new series launches though, remember. In the case of JMS, well, dude's a superstar writer, so it's not a huge surprise that his Wonder Woman run would immediately go to hardcover. As it is, they already do hardcovers with most books worthy of it or series launches, so I don't see much change.

    I think a Geoff Johns/Green Lantern omnibus set is inevitable. When they'll get around to it, though, is another matter. Marvel's doing it with Matt Fraction - their own Geoff Johns - as they get enough material, seeing as there's already the first omnibus out. DC could probably shoot for omnibus volumes with what's out already; but I suspect they'll probably wait for later.

    Significant to me is the final Grant Morrison Batman & Robin volume. They decided to include The Return in it. Which is a good move, to me; I had originally suspected it would end up collected at the end of "The Road Home".

  6. The $75 price tag for the Flash omnibus had better be a misprint; that's more than the JLA or Starman hardcovers and there's an equal amount of material for them too.

  7. $75?!?! With ABSOLUTE NEW FRONTIER-NEW PRINTING coming in at 464 pages and $75, it's possible this flash omnibus could be and absolute edition....

  8. I, too, was afraid Batman: The Return would be collected along with Bruce Wayne: The Road Home, but DC thankfully did the right thing. I'd hate to have to buy a collection of what's essentially a month-long filler stunt just because of one single issue written by Morrison.

    I'm intrigued about the page count for Batman and Robin vol. 3, though. 168 pages seems like too much to collect just 5 issues, even considering Batman: The Return is double-sized. Maybe there will be a lot of extras.

    The Flash by Geoff Johns omnibus series is a wonderful idea, but now that Bob Harras is DC's new EiC, I think chances of a Mark Waid Flash omnibus are looking pretty slim, given the history between those two. Actually, I wasn't even aware that Harras was in charge of DC's collected editions department until this week.

  9. Twelve issues and a few one-shots count as an omnibus these days? Jeeze, I remember Marvel got a bit of 'flack' (relative to the trade community, at least) about the Death of Captain America omnibus only having 18 issues. This just barely counts as an oversized hardcover.

  10. ""note that Wonder Woman has gone back to hardcover""

    Seriously? Doing that kind of killed any of the momentum the 2005 Wonder Woman series had. People forgot it existed.
    Made of fail, DC.

  11. MisterSmith, you're forgetting that both Iron Heights and the OWaW special are double-sized. This first omnibus will collect about 17 issues' worth of story pages, which is about the same size as any of the first five Starman omnibus volumes.

  12. Sure, DC tends to release beginning series in hardcover, sometimes -- Booster Gold, for instance, started in hardcover and then went to first-run paperback. But whereas I understand why dl316bh doesn't see a change, I myself am reminded of post-One Year Later when DC took any book not already being released in trade and started collecting it; here it seems like anything not previously in hardcover (Birds of Prey, Green Arrow) has made the jump. Again, I think the real benchmark will be Teen Titans -- eight-eight issues in, lessening popularity, but with a new writer, will DC move it to hardcover?

    If the Flash hardcover price is a placeholder, personally I'd like to see it come down to about $50.

  13. Hmm. What extras do we reckon later editions will include? The Flash/Wonder Woman crossover is all I can think of in possible bonus issues. No miniseries like for Robinson's Starman or such.

  14. I'm suffering from hardcover overload and for myself it's time to say no to most of these until the softcovers arrive. I already have all the Johns Flash tr
    trades and the separate one-shots, so there's a big save. I've no interest in JMS's two books or Green Arrow. The jury is still out on Emerald Knights. Of these, the only must buys are the Batman and Robin hardcover and Knight and Squire one.

    I'll wait and see about the buzz on later Brightest Day issues before I commit to those pricey versions.

  15. Did you knew that here in Spain we got last year an omnibus with ALL the Geoff Johns issues collected?
    And for 60 EUR, I think it would trade out for 50 $ around there....

  16. Do you own that version? I noticed it's 1,008 pages. Is it heavy? Easy to read? Paper quality? How does it hold in your hand or sit in your lap?

  17. Nope, I'm sorry, I don't own it myself, I don't like Flash that much! ;)
    I've been looking on the web for reviews on this volume, but I'm afraid to say I haven't found anything, just this one (http://www.nuestroscomics.com/dossier-informativo-flash-de-geoff-johns/) with a picture of the spine... I can tell you though that more books have been published in this format, like the entire Grant Morrison JLA run clocking at 1120 pages!! (http://www.planetadeagostinicomics.com/Vistas/detalle_comic.aspx?Seccion=catalogo&CPadre=6.7&Tipo=Atra&Cat=327&id=18528), the Waid&Hitch run (a shorter one, but still... http://www.planetadeagostinicomics.com/Vistas/detalle_comic.aspx?Tipo=Nov&id=22810) or THE LOSERS (http://www.planetadeagostinicomics.com/Vistas/detalle_comic.aspx?Seccion=catalogo&CPadre=&Tipo=Atra&Cat=&id=22078)... PREACHER has also been published in a two-volume edition, with another volume for covers and spin-offs (http://www.planetadeagostinicomics.com/Vistas/detalle_comic.aspx?Seccion=catalogo&CPadre=6.7&Tipo=Atra&Cat=13397&id=22095)...
    Sadly, even if I can't speak for the quality of the print, there seems to be be quite frequently trouble with translations and other ¿minor? editorial details, like the Word in PREACHER not being treated properly (http://www.untebeoconotronombre.com/archive/2010/ni_regalado_ni_prestado_predicador_todo_a_cien.html) and more often than not poor scannings... On the other hand, if you check out the imprints "Clasicos DC" and "Universo DC" in the following link, you'll see they're publishing loads of classic material in affordable editions though pocket-sized, so I guess one thing goes for the other... A few examples: the entire John Ostrander run in MARTIAN MANHUNTER (2 volumes) and SPECTRE (3 volumes), the entire Paul Levitz LEGION collected, almost the entire Wolfman TEEN TITANS run (they had to stop because of poor sales when the Grummet run at pencils was over), both Giffen&De Matteis LEAGUEs (that is, America and Europe), etc....

    I wish they published in English too....if they did how difficult could it be to get them to india?
    Gotham entertainment in India used to publish mostly in English then in a few other languages.
    They did publish great gems in their cheaply priced pocket sized specials,around 2$USD each like STAN LEE'S JUST IMAGINE,SUPERBOY'S LEGION,Morrison Flash before DC collected it,BYRNE'S WONDER WOMAN/SPIDER-MAN CHAPTER ONE/X-MEN THE HIDDEN YEARS & AUSTEN'S UNCANNY X-MEN among a lot more....

  19. Makes me wonder, do they have a similar plan with:

  20. I think it's very unlikely you'd see omnibus volumes of any of those titles. Yes, the former are by Geoff Johns, but I don't think they had nearly the impact that Johns's Flash run did, irrespective of how much we might have individually enjoyed some of those (Johns's Hawkman stories, in particular).