Panini Comics UK reveals new Marvel launches, Batman title – and plans for a new Captain Britain Omnibus

Panini Comics UK have revealed the covers, release dates and details of their new Collector’s Editions, replacing titles that were put on hiatus because of store closures caused by pandemic lockdown restrictions, which impacted sales.

As the UK steps gingerly out of those restrictions, the publisher is gearing up for action on the news stands across the country, to the delight of fans.

Here’s an outline of four new titles, supplied direct from Panini.

First out of the traps will be Amazing Spider-Man, launching on Thursday 25th March, priced at only £2.99, a 48 page title published every four weeks.

Running two stories every issue, this title will continue with Nick Spencer’s run, on the “Hunted” story arc.

Next is Marvel Universe X-Men, launching on Thursday 15th April, price £7.99 for 112 pages every four weeks – the same pagination as a five-chapter graphic novel.

This title will usher in Jonathan Hickman’s incredible “Dawn of X” story arcs, kicking off with House of X and Powers of X.

“We’ll run through all the supercool tie-ins (Marauders, Hellions etc),” Panini editor Simon Frith told downthetubes, “and generally present the stories in the intended reading order, as we arrive at X of Swords and beyond.”

Batman – Guardian of the Night launches on the Thursday 6th May, this title replacing the cruelly-curtailed Batman: Tales of the Dark Knight reprint, which was perhaps the most high profile victim of publishing delays – a launch no-one expected to be torpedoed by a Pandemic back in March last year. Only one issue with that title got to the UK news stand.

Like the Spider-Man title, Batman – Guardian of the Night will cost £2.99 for 48 pages, on sale every four weeks.

This new title publishing DC’s Dark Knight stories launches with with James Tynion’s Batman run and ably backed-up by Brian Michael Bendis’ Batman Universe.

Marvel Essentials launches on Thursday 27th May, price £7.99 for 112 pages, on sale every four weeks.

Featuring Dan Slott and Al Ewing’s epic Avengers/Fantastic Four Empyre storyline, and Donny Cates’ Venom story arcs, this is the title where the big events and crossovers will feature (unless it’s X-Men).

There will also be the odd surprise from the editors, too, given the wealth of great material coming from Marvel right now.

All of the new Panini titles will be available from supermarkets and newsagents, or from Panini’s online store.

Do note that the £2.99 titles – which are great value and, we think, worth making a trip to your newsagent for, are unavailable on subscription. Panini tell us they’re only able to offer subscriptions on the £7.99 Marvel Universe Editions.

There’s been some initial gasps of shock at the price point of the new Marvel Essentials and X-Men collections, but it should be noted that the 112 page count is a step up from Panini’s previous offerings, delivering five US comics in one – which is still cheaper than buying five imported US comics.

Before the launch of these four titles, look out for the Marvel Select Falcon & Winter Soldier Bookazine out in shops from Thursday 11th March, price £9.99, more information in a later news item.

downthetubes is also delighted to reveal Panini are putting together an Alan Moore and Alan Davis Captain Britain Omnibus for release in October, in hardcover – with as yet unspecified extras… that sounds great!

• Panini Comics is online at comics.panini.co.uk| Web Store

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The founder of downthetubes, John works as a comics editor, writer, as Creative Consultant on the Dan Dare audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing for over 30 years, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War and “Dan Dare”. He’s the writer of “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood for digital comic 100% Biodegradable.



Categories: British Comics, downthetubes Comics News, downthetubes News, Superhero Comics

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8 replies

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    This all looks very welcome and appears to resolve the fate of the Collected Editions which were struggling to stay below £5. The page count was chopped back just before Covid.

    Two things though – Firstly, I thought that obscure small logos paired with large lead strip names, as seen on the cover of The Mighty World of Marvel and Titan’s DC Universe, had been reported as confusing retailers, leading to those titles’ demise. Maybe not now seen as a material problem?

    Secondly, are Panini tackling W H Smith on where these are going to be displayed, given that the Collected Editions were moved out of reach behind the till for “security reasons.”

    Anyway, despite that, I hear that the regular production crew are all back which is very welcome.

    • The WHSmith nonsense about ‘security reasons’ needs tackling. My local store mentioned theft.

      Is there a gang going round stealing CEs?

      Are WHSmith telling me chocolate isn’t stolen? But, no, it’s okay to sell tooth-rotting chocolate on open display.

      I found thefts more when it came to magazines. Magazines such as MOJO and METAL HAMMER often have their cover CDs missing. Why aren’t they behind the counter for ‘security reasons’?

      WHSmith needs to *prove* that the theft of CEs was/is a problem. It seems absurd.

  2. Lots of really interesting stuff in here, and you really have to praise the team at Panini for getting back on the horse after a big couple of years of changes for the whole Marvel range. My initial thoughts –
    • A shame – but understandable – that the Collectors Edition range, as was, is seemingly no longer, especially for Astonishing Spider-man and Essential X-men, almost 25 years before being cut short is no mean feat! I know the new titles will keep the spirit of the old alive, but I guess I’m just an old sentimentalist as they were the reprints of my childhood!
    • Very surprised X-men gets its own (bumper) title, especially over The Avengers given the wider state of Marvel at the moment. I guess Avengers are involved in the bigger events so I do see some logic, but even Spidey has been relegated to just two US reprints a month when he recently had six. Certainly some toe in the water logic being applied here, understandably, but the X-men decision does baffle me a little.
    • The price points are actually very good, that’s been a concern with Panini basically since Brexit and I think they are about right for the product on offer.
    • Looks like there is a split between trying to get the casual fans (Spidey/Batman) and the hardcore (Universe titles). I’d be worried that the casual titles might be a bit too slow to reprint stuff. A shame as well they aren’t available via subscription, especially since Panini have been waiting until the world gets back to normal to re-launch but we won’t quite be unlocked by the time Spidey hits.
    • We’ve gone from utter Deadpool saturation, to zero Deadpool at all. Don’t mind myself, but it’s not too long ago that Wolverine and Deadpool was the best selling CE. Sure he’ll be back when Deadpool 3 hits cinemas.
    Overall, some fascinating changes, and I hope it pays off for them.

    • Excellent insight, Chris.

      I was surprised that X-Men got a bumper title over Avengers, given the success, financial and critical, of INFINITY WARS and ENDGAME. I would not have thought X-Men were still as marketable. APOCALYPSE and DARK PHOENIX didn’t seem that well received by moviegoers.

      The Deadpool thing is peculiar, but I thought he was overexposed. Too much. Having his own CE, and occupying WOLVERINE & DEADPOOL, was tolerable, but then he was even taking up space in ASTONISHING SPIDER-MAN. I hated that, I’d have rather the slot went to Miles Morales, Spider-Woman, Spider-Gwen, etc.

      I am surprised that they’ve dropped the ASTONISHING prefix. I always liked how Marvel UK titles had different names. AMAZING is the U.S. prefix, we had ASTONISHING. I liked it that way. Only a small matter of semantics, I know, but all that ASTONISHING history – and now the prefix is no more.

      It’s far too soon to think about a fifth CE, but if/when they do one, I’d like it to be a DC one. I just hope Titan’s woeful mishandling of the DC licence hasn’t tainted the DC brand in the UK.

      • Not only did Deadpool have quite a big presence in the CE’s we also have his All-Killer No-Filler collection from.Hachette.

      • Given the previous range of CEs from Panini, these newly-announced titles may not, of course, be only the first in a wider range. In Italy, where Panini continued to publish through the Pandemic, a number of Marvel tie-in titles utilise the same design as these new UK publications, including Avengers, Iron Man and Deadpool.

  3. When you say ‘Omnibus’ of the Captain Britain material, does that mean a slightly oversized Marvel-style omnibus? Or a hardcover standard sized book like the U.K. Marvel series from a few years ago?

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