Sunday, July 31, 2016

Modern Marvel: Blank Variants

In February 1994 Image Comics imprint Wildstorm published Gen 13 #1 with 13 variant covers which was a large number of variants for a comic book at the time.  One of the variant cover gimmicks used for Gen 13 #1 would go on to become a staple of modern comics, and that was the blank cover.  The Gen 13 #1 blank cover was dubbed the "do it yourself cover" and was meant for the comic reader to draw their own picture.  Today's blank covers are aimed at readers wishing to get a unique, one of a kind drawing by their favorite artists.

Blank covers are an inexpensive way for a comic publisher to sell more comics.  Most are just the standard issue, including the standard cover, wrapped by a blank cover with the publisher brand and title of the comic.  In the case of the Marvel Star Wars titles, the thicker paper stock used is suitable for an artist to sketch on.  To date, every non-reprint Marvel title has a first issue variant that is a blank cover.

Star Wars #1d - Marvel Comics, U.S. (January 2015)
blank variant
Star Wars: Darth Vader #1d - Marvel Comics, U.S. (February 2015)
blank variant
Star Wars: Princess Leia #1d - Marvel Comics, U.S. (March 2015)
blank variant
Star Wars: Kanan - The Last Padawan #1b - Marvel Comics, U.S. (April 2015)
blank variant
Star Wars: Lando #1d - Marvel Comics, U.S. (July 2015)
blank variant
Star Wars: Shattered Empire #1b - Marvel Comics, U.S. (September 2015)
blank variant
Star Wars: Chewbacca #1c - Marvel Comics, U.S. (October 2015)
blank variant
Star Wars: Vader Down #1b - Marvel Comics, U.S. (November 2015)
blank variant
Star Wars Annual #1b - Marvel Comics, U.S. (December 2015)
blank variant
Star Wars: Darth Vader Annual #1b - Marvel Comics, U.S. (December 2015)
blank variant
Star Wars: Obi-Wan & Anakin #1c - Marvel Comics, U.S. (January 2016)
blank variant
Star Wars Special: C-3PO #1c - Marvel Comics, U.S. (April 2016)
blank variant
Star Wars: Poe Dameron #1c - Marvel Comics, U.S. (April 2016)
blank variant
Star Wars: The Force Awakens #1b - Marvel Comics, U.S. (June 2016)
blank variant
Star Wars: Han Solo #1c - Marvel Comics, U.S. (June 2016)
blank variant
A complete list of all 15 blank cover variants to date includes:

TitleIssueDate
Star Wars1January 2015
Star Wars: Darth Vader1February 2015
Star Wars: Princess Leia1March 2015
Star Wars: Kanan the Last Padawan1April 2015
Star Wars: Lando1July 2015
Star Wars: Shattered Empire1September 2015
Star Wars: Chewbacca1October 2015
Star Wars: Vader Down1November 2015
Star Wars Annual1December 2015
Star Wars: Darth Vader Annual1December 2015
Star Wars: Obi-Wan & Anakin1January 2016
Star Wars Special: C-3PO1April 2016
Star Wars: Poe Dameron1April 2016
Star Wars: The Force Awakens1June 2016
Star Wars: Han Solo1June 2016

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