IMAGE EXPO: "Spawn" Archives Make Digital Debut

Slipped quietly in between news of his new series "Savior" and new "Spawn" writer Paul Jenkins at Image Expo came a long awaited release from Todd McFarlane: digital "Spawn" comics.

The Washington Post's Comic Riffs blog got word from the Image co-founder that starting this year, the "entire library of 250 Spawn comics" will be made available via comiXology.

In the interview, McFarlane describes his reticence to put "Spawn's" archives out in a digital format came due to complaints from brick and mortar retailers that the move would hurt their business. "I heard it and I was loyal to it," McFarlane said. "I said: 'Fine. I won't go digital with Spawn. I'll just allow you guys in the comic industry to do what you want to do with my book, even though everybody else was heading in that direction.'

"I didn't necessarily get the same reciprocation back," he added. "It's not like they kept the sales up or even increased them. In fact, they actually decreased some. Given that other companies, Marvel and DC specifically, have gone out and put big [amounts] of their libraries out there and it hasn't crumbled the industry like the naysayers said it would, then I guess I'll be the last holdout."

The story went on to say that the archives will arrive on comiXology at the same time as "Spawn" #250 arrives later this month where, as the creator put it, "Al [Simmons is] coming back. My Bruce Wayne, if you will, is coming back."

McFarlane also spoke about his ongoing plans for an R-rated "Spawn" movie relaunch, saying, "My pitch is: 'Guys, here's the story, nonnegotiable - I write, produce and direct. We keep it low-budget. I think minus talent, I can shoot this thing for about $10-million. I don't want a bunch of special effects.'"

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