When DC and Warner Bros. announced the DC Universe streaming and comic service, I remember chatting with our editor, Sean Aune. I don’t remember exactly what we said, but it was pretty close to “Is DC really going to be able to offer up enough to make this work?” In less than half a year, the answer is not just a resounding yes, it’s ‘why don’t you have a subscription yet?!’
The light-bulb moment for me came this last week with the release of DC’s latest animated film, Reign of the Supermen. Just two weeks after the movie hit shelves, it’s already up on DC’s streaming service. It’s a pretty fun movie! But it’s also a very new movie.
Let’s look at what DCU offers compared to some competing services right now.
The whole service offers up a pretty competitive pricing structure, with options for just $7.99 a month or $74.99 for the whole year. Compared to what I’m paying for just about any other streaming service you can rattle off, that’s a steal, and there’s not just a plethora of great content up there, there’s variety.
Logging into the same service nets me access to the remastered version of Batman: The Animated Series (arguably humanity’s greatest achievement), original programming, countless comics, back catalog superhero movies, TV shows lost to time (there was a Human Target series?!), and even brand new stuff going for $25 on store shelves. Just a couple DC animated films a year almost pays for the price of the service.
In comparison, Marvel Unlimited wants at least $69 a year or $9.99 a month just for comic books – which is still a good price, let’s be honest, or $99 to add on a pin, a patch, a low-quality action figure, and some paper comics that probably aren’t in any of the series you’re reading. Comixology Unlimited is $5.99 a month, and offers access to both Marvel and DC work, along with independent publishers and a bunch of manga, but it’s just static pages and that’s all. Which, at the price, seems like a steal.
At its current price, DC Universe sits right between those, while offering a greater variety of media and some brand new stuff.
It’s all that brand new stuff that really seals the deal. The back catalog is a nice bonus to fill in the spaces, but the new stuff is what matters. Between January 29 and February 15, the service is adding a bunch of stuff, including the aforementioned Reign of the Supermen, the remastered The New Batman Adventures, and the original series Doom Patrol. If that weren’t enough, movies like The Death of Superman, Batman Ninja, and Batman: Gotham by Gaslight are all up there – a whole pile of movies I’ve personally wanted to watch for a while are now all sitting just a thumbpress away on my Roku. Oh, and the comic-book collection is doubling this month.
And so that begs the question: why don’t you have a subscription yet?