DC Reboots with 52 First Issues, Day-and-Date Digital

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DC Comics will reboot its entire line of superhero comic book titles, relaunching 52 comic titles with first issues that will be released day and date digitally and in print.

The relaunch spins out of the current Flashpoint event and will kick off Aug. 31, when DC will release the final issue of Flashpoint and Justice League #1 as the company’s only releases of the week. The new Justice League will be written by Geoff Johns and penciled by Jim Lee.

The relaunched titles — 52 in all — will feature redesigned and revamped versions of DC’s classic heroes, all designed to appeal to a modern audience.

“We looked at what was going on in the marketplace and felt we really want to inject new life in our characters and line,” says DC co-publisher Dan DiDio in a statement. “This was a chance to start, not at the beginning, but at a point where our characters are younger and the stories are being told for today’s audience.”

Fans of the comic book publisher, whose roster of heroes includes Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, Aquaman and The Flash, were quick to chatter online about the digital initiative, which will see the new comics available for sale and download via various websites and apps on the same day the print comics arrive in shops.

The digital move is seen as a way for DC to reach a new, younger audience. DC Comics have been published since the mid-1930s, and the company recently published the 900th issue of Action Comics, which debuted Superman in its first issue in 1938. Long popular with children, the audience for comics in recent years has aged significantly and shrunk as distribution has been limited to comic speciality shops and youngsters preferring to spend their free time with more modern pastimes.

“We’re allowing people who have never bought a comic book in their lives to download them on portable media devices and take a look,” DC co-publisher Lee told USA Today.”Having the ability to give people access to these comics with one button click means we’re going to get a lot of new readers.”