Panini Comics UK has announced the cancellation of two of its Marvel reprint titles, X-Men, and Marvel Essentials.
Other comics, such as The Amazing Spider-Man and Batman: Guardian of the Night, are unaffected by the closures and still on sale.
X-Men will cease publication with Issue 10, on sale now in newsagents, and Marvel Essentials with Issue 12, on sale 31st March 2022.
The publisher has informed subscribes it is transferring subscribers remaining issues over to their Marvel Select Bookazines – and applying a 20% discount to the equivalent cover price of £9.99 per issue.
Marvel Select Bookazines, which can run to some 160 pages and are also on sale in newsagents, feature a variety of modern Marvel stories, whether they are the inspirational source materials for the Disney+ Marvel shows, or the perfect accompaniment to the latest Marvel movies.
News of the cancellation of the titles was met with mixed reaction from fans of the titles. Launched earlier this year, some have pointed to problems finding some Panini titles in newsagents, particularly WHSmith, but not in supermarkets like Sainsbury’s.
“Although I subscribed to these titles, I always looked out for them in stores, but it was very hit and miss,” commented Dan Curran in a Marvel UK Comics Facebook group. “Every time a new Marvel Select Bookazine is released I look for it in WHSmith, but it always takes them weeks to get these in stock. Sainsbury’s always has them as soon as they are released. Same with the Spider-Man and Batman titles.
It has not, of course, been easy launching and publishing comics and magazines during the ongoing pandemic, for any publisher, with many staff still working from home. The lack of footfall in WHSmith during COVID-19-imposed restrictions inevitably would have had a knock on affect on Electronic Point of Sales Data, used to determine future orders of a title.
It’s also been suggested by some that the price point of both titles, at £7.99 despite their 100+ page count, was also an issue. In Germany, for comparison, Panini’s X-Men equivalent title is priced at 4.99 Euros (£4.22).
What Now for X-Men fans?
It seems the price point of Panini UK’s The Amazing Spider-Man and Batman: Guardian of the Night at just £2.99 – although unavailable on subscription from the company at that price – has helped them find a loyal audience.
Perhaps the success of these might see a new X-Men title in the same format next year on the UK news stand? We’ll have to wait and see…
To date, Panini have managed to collect six issues of most if not all of the latest X-Men titles before this cancellation. For now, for those unable to get to a comic shop,if you want to continue reading these mutant tales, Marvel US of course offer their X-books as trade collections. All the current collections contain six issues each, and current storylines have been in sequential order across all the titles with their Dawn/Reign of X trade collections.
PANINI COMICS UK CURRENTLY ON SALE OR ON SALE SOON INCLUDE…
Amazing Spider-Man Volume 1 #10
On sale now | £2.99
Erupting from the pages of Marvel Essentials comes Absolute Carnage!
In the crossover event of the year psychotic symbiote has returned and he’s deadlier than ever!
Carnage is hunting anyone who has ever worn a symbiote! And that includes lil’ Normie Osborn and Dylan Brock – the son of Venom! Can Spider-Man save them, or will he be too late!
By Nick Spencer and Ryan Ottley, reprinting material from Amazing Spider-Man (2018) # 30-31
Amazing Spider-Man Volume 1 #11
On sale 30th December 2021 | £2.99
48 pages of pulse-pounding arachnid-action! The Spider-Man of 2099 is back from the future! But he’s a prisoner of Roxxon! Plus, Spider-Man and his super-spy sister Teresa Parker are hunting the Chameleon!
By Nick Spencer and Patrick Gleason, reprinting material from Amazing Spider-Man (2018) # 32-33
Although subscriptions to Amazing Spider-Man are not available from Panini, you can subscribe to the title on services such as Newsstand here
Batman: Guardian Of The Night Volume 1 #9
On Sale Now | £2.99
In this issue, “Their Grand Designs” comes to its shocking conclusion, as the Joker succeeds in robbing Bruce Wayne of his fortune, his home and his company. Now, armed with Batman’s arsenal of gadgets, the clown prince of crime is ready to become King of Gotham. After Joker’s new sidekick Punchline defeated Harley Quinn and shot Catwoman, and Batman was seriously wounded by Deathstroke, things look pretty grim for the caped crusader, and they look even worse for the citizens of Gotham.
The thrills don’t stop there, as we bring you another great team up with the Dark Knight and the Man of Steel, as the Atomic Skull arrives in town with a terrible message for our heroes.
Reprinting material from Batman (2016) #94 and Batman/Superman #9
Kang Dynasty Omnibus
ISBN: 9781846532894 | £29.99 | 416 pages
Kang the Conqueror has been a foe of the Avengers for decades! Now, witness his ultimate triumph, as he brings all of his vast cross-time spanning legions to bear to conquer the Earth once and for all!
Can Earth’s Mightiest Heroes hold back the colossal forces arrayed against them or will they face defeat and subjugation beneath the boot of the Conqueror?!
Collecting Avengers (1998) 41-55 and Avengers Annual (2001)
Available from all good retailers, or direct from Panini
Marvel Essentials #8
On sale now | 116 pages | £7.99
This issue wraps up the devastating events of Absolute Carnage. Can Eddie Brock stop Carnage from killing the Avengers in their sleep? What will happen if Carnage defeats a Venomised Hulk? Whatever happened to the alternative Reed Richards, known to us all as ‘the Maker’? Plus the Savage Avengers, as Conan the Barbarian teams up with Doctor Strange and Doctor Doom to take the fight to the evil sorcerer Kulan Gath!
Reprinting material from Absolute Carnage #3-5, Venom (2018) #20, and Savage Avengers #8.
Spider-Man Magazine #403
The Wizard is creating havoc on the streets in his power suit! But our web-crawler has an unlikely ally to back him up… Squirrel Girl is in town, and she’s got an army of squirrels at her command!
Plus, there’s a ton of all-action activities, puzzles, posters and features to check out!
FINAL ISSUE X-Men Volume 1 #10
On sale now in newsagents | £7.99
136 pages of mutant madness! Armor goes in search of the mutants who aren’t on Krakoa, starting with her old friend Beak. But the search quickly became a rescue!
Plus, in the depths of space the New Mutants must protect Deathbird! Also, can Domino and Forge rescue Wolverine and Kid Omega?!
By Ed Brisson, Flaviano, Marco Failla, Rod Reis, Benjamin Percy, Joshua Cassara and Stephen Segovia, reprinting material from X-Force (2019) #5-6 and New Mutants (2019) #3-6
With thanks to Lew Stringer for the heads up, and Alan Russell for Marvel US X-Men reprint information, and members of the Marvel UK Comics Facebook group
The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. He is currently editor of Star Trek Explorer, published by Titan – his third tour of duty on the title originally titled Star Trek Magazine.
Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Babylon 5 Magazine, and more. 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 “Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies” for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.