Amazon's Comics Platform Unveils 'ComiXology Originals' Publishing Program

ComiXology Originals Banner - Publicity -H 2016
Courtesy of ComiXology
The imprint, which launches in 2017, will release exclusive material from outside publishers and content creators.

Digital comics platform ComiXology has partnered with BOOM! Studios, Valiant Entertainment and the estate of MAD Magazine creator Harvey Kurtzman to launch a new publishing program offering brand-new material exclusive to ComiXology and Amazon customers.

ComiXology Originals officially launches in 2017, but its three debut titles — Adventure Time: Marshall Lee Spectacular, Valiant High and Marley's Ghost, the latter an expansion on Kurtzman's abandoned attempt to adapt Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol to comics — are available for preorder as of today.

All three titles are intended to act as outreach for the comics medium in general, in addition to ComiXology specifically, offering alternative genres to the superhero stories that dominate the industry. Even Valiant High — written by The Late Show With Stephen Colbert's Daniel Kibblesmith, with art by Jughead's Derek Charm — reimagines the publisher's superhero characters in a high school setting, with heroes and villains becoming faculty and students.

The program is the second significant new project this year from the digital comics company, which was purchased by Amazon in 2014. Back in May, it announced the launch of a subscription program that offers content from indie publishers for $5.99 per month.

"Our mission is to make everyone on the face of the planet a comic fan, and with ComiXology Originals we’re excited to offer a range of content by diverse creators," ComiXology co-founder and CEO David Steinberger said in a statement accompanying the launch announcement. "It’s fantastic to be working with publishers across the spectrum to deliver great comics to comiXology and Kindle, offering fans stories that they can’t get anywhere else."