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Darby Pops Off: Jeff Kline on the Quality of Covers

Written by Kristine Chester | No Comments | Published on February 19, 2016
The content that follows was originally published on the Darby Pop Publishing website at http://www.darbypop.com/darby-pops-offs/darby-pops-off-jeff-kline-on-the-quality-of-covers/

On Darby Pops Off we’ve discussed the value of a good comic book cover, but what about something more mundane? Something that might as well be invisible to most of us. The quality of the cover: the material your single issues are made out of. Personally I hate the glossy smooth covers that grace some publishers’ titles. Those books are stiff and reflect the light too much, and just don’t feel right. They don’t feel like comic books to me. There’s something about that almost newspaper like quality to many floppy covers. It’s partially nostalgia since that is the way comics have been as long as I can remember and it’s something that sets them apart from magazines, paperbacks, and other mediums. In this week’s Darby Pops Off, company founder, Jeff Kline, poses several questions about your experiences with the quality of covers.

If you have a thought on the topic of the week, please join in the discussion on social media at Facebook (facebook.com/DarbyPopPublishing), Twitter (@DarbyPopComics), or in the comments below.

Until next time,




Hey All –

I have a question for those of you who still buy actual “floppies” (as opposed to digital comics and/or TPs only): does the paper quality of the cover impact your decision-making in any way, shape, or form?

In other words, do you – consciously or unconsciously – perceive a cardstock cover to be indicative of higher “quality” overall? Are you more likely to take a flier with a new title if it’s fashioned a bit more luxuriously? Are you swayed by special finishes… or even the occasional gimmick (such as a lenticular)? Or, do you tend to suspect that a fancier package is hiding a sub-par product?

By the by, I’m not talking about cover variants here; that’s a topic for another time. And a root cause of the rise in rental storage units across the country…

Obviously, I ask ‘cuz we’re always trying to put our monetary investment into those areas where readers/collectors might appreciate it most.   Is the cover’s thickness more important to you than… say… the characteristics of the paper inside? Or vice-versa? Or, have you never really paid attention to same – and it’s all about story and/or art and/or investment potential?

Along similar lines, I wonder if retailers have a different point-of-view re: the above. Is it easier to “recruit” a new customer with something out-of-the-ordinary (from a packaging perspective)? Or, do browsers tend to ignore the “orphan” on the shelf, assuming it’s less “professional” because it doesn’t precisely mirror Marvel or DC product?

O.K. — that was way more than one question. So, feel free to offer up way more than one answer.

Thanks, as always, for reading/considering/sharing…

Jeff Kline

Founder – Darby Pop Publishing