Bleeding Cool to launch a print magazine

“Everyone else is going from print to digital, but we’re going from digital to print!" That's Bleeding Cool founder Rich Johnston, who announced today that the popular and influential comics and pop culture blog will launch its own print magazine beginning in May 2012, with a 32-page sampler issue focusing on the Valiant relaunch.

The "#0" sampler will launch in conjunction with the Phoenix Comicon in late May. After that, Bleeding Cool reports that its magazine will expand to more than 100 pages monthly and go into regular production in October. Among other things, the initial press release does promise "exclusive content," suggesting that some of the material being made available in the magazine will not run Bleeding Cool's website.

The site quoted Brendon Connelly, who writes about film for the website, as saying "Readers expect longer, beefier reads from magazines than they do from the web, and Bleeding Cool will be happy to oblige with good, in-depth pieces amongst all of the usual chaos."

The niche that Bleeding Cool Magazine seems likely to fill in the market is the one abandoned by Wizard when it went under; mainstream, pop-culture and newsstand-friendly comics news has been decidedly lost in a market where the remaining print news options are decidedly academic and artsy. Unlike Wizard, though, the site says that it will stick with a $1.49 price point for the magazine, making it cheaper than not only any mainstream comic on the stands around it but less than a third of the cover price Wizard was selling at before it folded. This, along with discounts offered to retailers who order more than 15 copies and featured status on Bleeding Cool's website for those who order more than 25, should make the publication a ubiquitous presence in the direct market, as it will be substantially cheaper than most of the other products carried in the shops.

For the uninitiated, Bleeding Cool describes itself as follows in the press release: hosts over one million site visitors monthly, and has been ranked as the world’s most influential comic book blog by Technorati, the leading search engine for blogs. Bleeding Cool also regularly places within Technorati’s top ten rankings for pop culture and entertainment, and top fifteen for film coverage. The website features regular contributions from Rich Johnston and Brendon Connelly, as well as retailer and comic book creator columns.