Marvel Touts New Deal: Buy A Comic Book, Get The Digital Version Free

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Pop quiz, hotshot: it’s Wednesday, and that means a new shipment of comic books is sitting pretty at your local dead tree retailer. Do you schlep down to the store to buy a physical copy, or will you reach for your smartphone/tablet and buy it from the comfort of your own home?

Well, if you want the best bang for your buck, you should probably get dressed and prepare to brave the outside world. Starting in June, any Marvel comic that costs $3.99 or higher (when did comic books get so pricey?) will come with a code that lets the purchaser download a digital copy of that same comic via the Marvel Comics app for iOS or Android.

How benevolent. Not every comic will get the two-for-one treatment, but most of Marvel’s biggest names are accounted for thanks to their price tag. Think The Avengers, Amazing Spiderman, Invincible Iron Man, and Captain America, with plenty more to like on the list.

The move isn’t without its downsides though — namely, that you’ll have to wing your way to the local comic book store and carry out a financial transaction in person. Which is fine, if you’re into that sort of thing, but it’s 2012 dammit and I don’t want to move any more than I have to.

I’m kidding. Really.

Marvel tested the concept last year when they announced that their Ultimate Comics line would come bundled with a digital copy, and the move garnered the comics giant plenty of “positive reactions from both retailers and fans.” Of course it did — fans get free stuff and comic book stores get their business and the potential for increased traffic. Meanwhile, Marvel eats up the goodwill from both parties and builds awareness of their mobile marketplace (and all of its in-app purchases). Everyone’s a winner!