Problem(s) with the Omnibus Format

I never realized the severity of the underlying problem with the current omnibus format until recently. I have mentioned in other threads how much I love omnibus collections because it compiles all comic book issues in publication order within a certain page count. I have also mentioned how disappointed I was that the Detective Comics Before Batman Omnibus was cancelled. While I mentioned this in that thread, the full impact just dawned on me (or at least I believe so).

Using the Green Lantern Silver Age Omnibus Volume Two as reference, the omnibus focuses on Green Lantern, but also includes an issue each featuring Zatanna and Guy Gardner. So, if either of them received their own omnibus, that would mean at least one duplicate issue for a separate omnibus.

If the publishers for the omnibus run released the Detective Comics Before Batman omnibus, then it (like I mentioned before) would have opened the door to collect based on series instead of character. By doing so, it would create a sense of nostalgia for those who want to experience what readers experienced when it was first released, as well as ensure there is no character/issue overlap.

What are your thoughts? Do you notice any problems with the omnibus format?

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Personally, I think an online library of all DC comics would be the best format. And, if I could make my own playlists (so I’d have my favorite storylines, the size of an omnibus), that’d be a fantastic feature. And, if I could share those playlists with other users, and if they could share with me, that’d be terrific. And, if DC had their own official playlists, that’d be even better. And, if there were links between comics (“As seen in Action Comics #327!”) which would navigate you directly to the linked issue, that’d be awesome. And if you could bounce back to whe you were in the previous issue, that’d also be awesome.

If only… :sob:


@Applejack, please pass @harley.333 suggestion up the ladder!!! Thats genius!!!

I’ve shared this feedback thread with the team. :blush:


This isn’t really that much of an issue (at least for DC) until the late bronze age. Before Crisis on Infinite Earth guest appearances were pretty rare and crossovers (where you needed to buy different titles to get the whole story) were almost unheard of except at Marvel where they started cross polinating lesser selling titles like X-Men in the mid sixties. Even if you bought every DC omnibus you would maybe only have a dozen repeats the cost of which is neglible next to what original copies would cost (assuming you could find them).

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Personally, I’d prefer some repeat issues across omnibuses than missing large story chunks from cross-overs. I think certain cross-over events are better off collected in their own book, but little cross-over stories are nice back to back so I don’t ‘have’ to buy another omnibus or hunt down a specific issue to finish an arc.


A bit off topic but I believe the ideal for modern comics is what they did with the Rebirth trades: collect by series where you have singular arcs and by event where it makes sense…so Batman and Flash had completely separate presentation in trade right up to the Button. The issues of that crossover were presented together in a single collection. If you were just buying Batman or Flash you could very easily slot the Button trade on your shelf between the individual volumes but if you were buying both you didn’t have to buy repeat issues (a big issue with alot of New 52 crossovers like Throne of Atlantis).

Of course this only really works if the crossover includes enough issues to be worth collecting on its own. That seems to be the way DC is building them these days but it is a shame that it sort of kills off the two, three or four part crossovers of old.