It's Magic time… Boom Studios appears to be poised to take another massive worldwide franchise historically underestimated by the direct market and turn it into a mainstay in comic shops. They did it with Power Rangers, which is hitting new heights entering its fifth year, and by reimagining and reinvigorating longtime Dark Horse anchors Buffy The Vampire Slayer and Firefly. Now Boom aims to pull a hat trick by doing the same for Magic: The Gathering.
Just the announcement of the publisher acquiring the license caused collectors to snatch up the first Magic: The Gathering: The Shadow Mage comic from Acclaim prompting it to land at #3 on YouTube influencer, ComicTom101's Top 10 Trending list with Tom touting Boom's launch as "potential bangers."
Early buzz coming out of this year's virtual ComicsPRO Annual Meeting on Boom's Magic: The Gathering series, simply titled Magic written by Black Cat's Jed MacKay with art by Spider Ghost's Ig Guara, was already strong. Retailers came into the conference concerned that the new series would not include exclusive playable cards bagged with each issue, but Boom's Morgan Perry promised retailers a surprise item that was sure to "spark" retailers to order with confidence… which we learned late last week was the Magic #1 Ashcan.
Beyond compelling retailers to bet big on Magic #1, the Magic #1 Ashcan has collectors and Magic fans fighting over the available limited quantities with copies on eBay averaging sales of $50, but with copies selling for as much as $150. Certainly, the retailer who let their copy go for a mere $20 has to be kicking themselves while their customer is feeling very good about their investment.
The advance buzz and excitement for Magic #1 extends into the retailer exclusives with 26 exclusive covers already confirmed including ones by hot variant cover artists like Junggeun Yoon, Tyler Kirkham, Siya Oum, Ken Lashley, and others.
All of this adds up to Magic #1 initial orders already over 50,000 copies, putting it handily in Boom's 50K Club prior to FOC this Monday, March 15th. How much higher will the orders go now that retailers have read the ashcan and made a pretty penny on it to boot? We'll find out next week, I suspect.