From May/ June 1995: the first issue of THE MIGHTY I MAGAZINE.
Before Online became ubiquitous, publishers needed a way to reach out to their would-be audience. Fanzines had traditionally provided thet route but their low quality production values - and the whims of their Fan Boy editors - made them unreliable for reaching the mass market. Marvel hit on the solution in the early 1980s: MARVEL AGE MAGAZINE. That was Marvel's own in-house fanzine, stuffed to the staples with suspiciously good news stories about upcoming projects and creative teams. All geared to getting the buyer to buy more. And - best of all - the readership were willing to pay.
DC resisted going down the same route and concentrated their in-store marketing into a one-sheet freebie that compensated for s lack of colour printing by using colour paper. This was definitely low-fi Marketing. Someone obviously noticed and it was upgraded to a monthly glossy colour freebie which showcased upcoming projects in far more luxurious surroundings. Plus, of course, it was free which made it more likely that punters would grab a copy at the counter no matter where their buying loyalties lay.
By the mid 1990s, the unprecedented competition in the market place meant that everyone who could pumped a lot of cash into Marketing. WIZARD and other sympathetic wannabes were the obvious go-to destinations to spread the word (especially if the deal could be sweetened with a trading card or ashcan edition as an insert) but the MARVEL AGE model still ruled supreme.
This was the Image Comics version: THE MIGHTY I.
This was presented in the flip-book format, hence the two covers below.
I love diving into 50p boxes wherever I can in the hopes of uncovering some of these long lost - and long forgotten - mags because no one cares about them (or even remember them) any more. Which makes them prime fodder for STARLOGGED.
For the record: I was never much of an Image Comics fan (although I did like A TOUCH OF SILVER) so I never succumbed to the hype.