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(Mighty Morphin’) Power Rangers on Home Media

The new Power Rangers movie hit home media this week, and as it stood, was one of the movies that I knew I definitely had an interest in purchasing, despite having seen it in the theater.

I opted to go with the Target steelbook edition…largely as it was supposed to come with a “graphic novel,” and I recall stuff like an X-Men one that came with a box set, or the Mask of the Phantasm one that came with a VHS back in the day, or even the full-sized Avengers Season One that came with the first MCU Avengers movie.

power_rangers_on_bluray

The case itself looks good, and I find that I much prefer these costumes’ appearance in stills like this or in action on the screen…but something about the toys just does not work for me–they look like dollar-store generics to me and don’t have the nostalgia that the classic costumes’ design would have.

As I’m not expecting much of a series here and don’t expect to have much to line this up with on a shelf, I was also more open to the steelbook as it won’t be a weird item amidst others for me. The title and such is still on the side, and I like this image, and even the lightning symbol on the back works well; though I may try to cut down the cardboard that came with it to have the “specs” of the release with the case, since that was not itself duplicated on the steelbook.

power_rangers_not_a_graphic_novel

Strictly on the surfacey, technical level, my only real disappointment here is that the so-called “graphic novel” is nothing more than a comic! It is just a differently-sized comic book, essentially a “single issue” (though it may have more pages). [Edit: Power Rangers: Aftershock apparently was a 96-page original graphic novel published in standard edition for $14.99.]

This booklet has 60 pages of story…so either the graphic novel has something else, or this is severely truncated!

I’m also–despite this being “free”–not happy with it as sold. “Sequel comic” or “free comic” or a number of other terms could be used. But to me, a “graphic novel” indicates squarebound and a sturdier cover and such–something “prestige format” perhaps. This most certainly is not that!

I guess this just strikes a chord with me, as it looks (to me) like blatant misuse of the term “graphic novel” to get around the term “comic” or “comic book”–as if either is a bad word.

Had this edition of the release been more expensive for including the comic, I’d be quite miffed. As the non-Target-exclusive version was the same price…this IS still “bonus” and 60 pages, so it’s not like it’s “nothing” was done.

I do look forward to re-watching this, as well as the “extras,” despite seeing too many online pieces already as folks scramble all over themselves to make “news stories” of stuff that’s revealed in comments in the extras and such.

power_rangers_on_bluray_blogtrailer

Dark Knight Returns and Death of Superman Hardcovers

I’ve long been very interested in the Death of Superman hardcover edition from the line of Graphic Novel + Original Movie + Digital releases from Warner Bros. Not all that much the movie (though the documentary with it is well worth the price alone!).

Thing is…I wasn’t going to pay $27-something for it.

book_bluray_dvd_01

Browsing at Walmart, having given up actually spotting anything of interest, I did a double take and realized I’d stumbled across a “super-hero display” in the home media section. As my eyes moved upward, I spotted these (as well as an empty Batman Year One slot, and overflowing Justice League: War and Justice League: Throne of Atlantis slots…with one copy of Dark Knight Returns and several Death of Superman.

All were price at $19.96 or so (think “$20”)…but while I knew they were usually $27, I noticed that the Batman: The Dark Knight Returns had a $34 cover price…so I wasn’t going to pass on it and find it upped to $25 or so…nor did I want to pass on it and then waste hours and gas trying to track these down in a Walmart for this price again.

Frankly, if I was buying the Batman one, I couldn’t not buy the Superman one, so I splurged and bought both.

book_bluray_dvd_02

This also solves my “problem” with the DKR/DKII oversized deluxe hardcover: I now have THE one I particularly want, and got it for a mere $20. (I think the paperback edition is that price) plus I get the bluray, dvd, and digital combo pack of the movie…where the book itself is worth the price to me.

Ditto on the Superman one…and at least with the digital copy, that’s something all-new for me.

I’d also wondered about the packaging, only ever seeing these shrink-wrapped and un-openable: there are pockets built into the inside back cover to hold the bluray and the dvd; the  Batman one had an extra, un-attached sleeve for a bonus features disc; and the Digital Redemption Sheet was not attached. (Only two discs to the Superman book, so no extra sleeve).

It’s a bit of sticker shock buying both, but knowing myself and my OCD, I figured it was better to just buy them now than waste resources in a couple weeks trying to hunt them down.

This does make me want an animated Kingdom Come movie all the more, though.

The Rest of the Stack: Rise of the simultaneous dual format release


November 3, 2009

Based on this week’s shipping list, the Rise of the Olympian arc from Wonder Woman is being released tomorrow in collected-volume format. While this in and of itself is NOT odd…what’s odd is the fact that it is being released SIMULTANEOUSLY in both Hardcover AND Softcover.

JUL090244 WONDER WOMAN RISE OF THE OLYMPIAN HC $24.99
JUL090245 WONDER WOMAN RISE OF THE OLYMPIAN TP $14.99

Now, I’m curious as to why such a difference in price. Seems that lately, the price difference between a hardcover and softcover is only $5-6. A $20 hardcover becomes a $15 paperback. The $25 or $30 hardcover becomes $20 or $25, respectively. Here it’s a whopping $10.

If I recall correctly, the original arc was 8 issues, at $2.99/issue…which puts the hardcover at a mere $1 above cover price of those single issues. And the softcover is priced such that you’re getting the contents of each single issue for about $1.88, $1.11 cheaper per-issue than the singles which had ads breaking up the story and with a month’s wait between chapters.

While this is frustrating–particularly for having given the title a chance with that arc, and then not being engaged ENOUGH to stick around for the single issues (in part for seeing both collected volumes solicited several months back). Had I simply waited, I’d get a nice, huge story at an EXTREMELY reasonable price! (I suspect some of my feelings might have more merit if one places Spider-Man: Noir vol. 1 TPB on the shelf next to Rise of the Olympian TPB, both at the same retail price).

Despite the frustration mentioned, and having zero real clue about the reasoning of the price points and both versions being put out together (and not having noticed ANYthing like this in books thus far solicited down the road)…the prices are how I’d like to see more collected volumes.

1. I’d rather have stuff in paperback, so it all goes together on the shelf; the old and new material. Not waiting during an extra long gap to buy a paperback because of the hardback having to have its turn on the shelf first.

2. Either way, the paperback should be significantly cheaper. Especially on the bigger books (I’m thinking of Planet Hulk and the Marvel: Noir books in particular), if I’m going to actually buy the book, I’d gladly pay the “mere” $5 to “upgrade” to the hardcover. If I’m already going to spend $30, $35 isn’t all that bad for a book so much larger physically. Same goes for the digest-size Noir paperbacks compared to the full-size hardcover counterparts.

But this Wonder Woman book…for the $10 difference, and the paperback being like getting almost 3 issues’ content “free” compared to the single issues’ cover price…I’d absolutely be all over buying the paperback just to get the story!

If books were REGULARLY released this way, it would allow for more choice in “collecting format.” Buy the singles as that’s the traditional format. Buy the collected (hardcover) for about the same price, perhaps slightly more, to have a nice hardcover for the bookshelf. Or go the cheapest route, and get a likely lower-quality of paper, but get to read the story without constant ads interrupting the flow, and getting the contents of comics for effectively the price of comics a decade ago. (Yeah, this doesn’t consider the stuff from the publisher side or the actual production costs and all that stuff.)

Despite all this…I’m a sucker. That $15 for the expected size of this book is rather appealing, especially for the ability to read everything in one volume. And add Wonder Woman to the shelf, s I’ve somehow never wound up with a Wonder Woman collected volume despite my 20+ years as a comics reader.

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