DC to Offer Two Ratio Variants, and One Bizarre 1:450 Incentive Cover for Batman Three Jokers

So DC is doing ratio covers again, that is cool. For Three Jokers there will be a third, almost ridiculously hard to get, ratio variant for the book. Jump ahead to check out the details.

Besides the standard covers, DC is also doing a 1:25 and a 1:100 variant cover. Each issue will also have 3 “premium” open to order variants. If shops order 50 of each of the three open to order variants for each of the three issues they will receive 1 collage variant featuring all 12 of the covers on it….. So that is a 1:450 variant. Figure each book costs retailers $3.50 at retail, times 50 copies, times 9 that equals $1575 to get one of the variants.

The full Press Release from DC:

It’s one of the most anticipated comic book stories of the decade: Batman: Three Jokers by Geoff Johns and Jason Fabok! Debuting in August, this three-issue Prestige Format DC Black Label series delivers the payoff to the years-long mystery of why – and how – there are three Jokers, and what that revelation means to the eternal conflict between Batman, his allies, and the Clown Prince of Crime.

To commemorate this landmark series, DC offers retailers nine Premium Variant Covers for Batman: Three Jokers, each illustrated by series artist Jason Fabok. Along with the main cover and open-to-order variant cover, each issue of Batman: Three Jokers will have three Premium Variant Covers, showcasing Fabok’s interpretation of a different face of The Joker’s madness from throughout DC history. All nine of the Premium Variant Covers mirror Fabok’s main covers for the three-issue series, giving a close-up look at even more of The Joker’s terrifying incarnations.

“This is a new and exciting initiative that will give you and your customers a unique item similar to a retailer exclusive cover, but at a lower buy-in cost,” said Nancy Spears, VP, Sales. “If this program does well, we will look for more opportunities like it in the future.”

The remaining Batman: Three Jokers Premium Variant Covers, along with trade dress versions of all nine Premium Variant Covers, will be revealed soon.

The minimum order for each Batman: Three Jokers Premium Variant Cover is 50 copies. For every 50 copies of all nine Premium Variant Covers ordered (450 copies total), retailers will receive one copy of the Batman: Three Jokers #3 “compilation” Premium Variant Cover for free, combining all nine Premium Variant Covers and the three main covers; collecting 12 of Fabok’s creepy and compelling headshots of The Joker into one cover.

29 thoughts on “DC to Offer Two Ratio Variants, and One Bizarre 1:450 Incentive Cover for Batman Three Jokers”

  1. I really don’t see any smaller shops doing this. This is more geared toward larger shops like midtown,mcs,mile high, unknown, etc. This is in my opinion completely asinine on DC’s part, and a slap in the face to a majority of comic shops. I know my shop won’t be ordering them because it’s too much overhead to attempt to sell through to remotely break even. Oh well.

      1. I never cared there is 3 Jokers which doesn’t make any sense anyways because a deck comes with two.The 3 Jokers are Azzarello Joker which is portrayed in Suicide Squad and first appeared in the HC Joker, Heath Ledger Joker is the second Joker, and then classic Joker. But technically there’s way more than that Red Hood Joker, Mask of the Phantasm Joker, face peeled Joker, Arkham games Joker voiced by Mark Hamill, animated Joker so I don’t get why 3 Jokers just call it Jokerverse like Marvel does with all there stuff. Why bring back Ratios for this I don’t think anyone cares. No ratios really help new 1st appearances like Gold Lantern from DC.

  2. They are doing “premium” covers which are variants for retailers, much like store variants. This gives smaller shops a cheaper “buy in” to get them. A retailer must buy 50 of each cover. Ie if i want premium cvr A, i have to buy 50+ of them. These also apply toward ratio covers. So issue 1 has 3 of these which = 150 comics. Which means a retailer qualifies for (6)1:25 and (1)1:100. It gets more complicated but thats the giest of it.

  3. This is a steaming pile of …..
    All covers done by Fabok as well? I think I’ll buy zero.

    I smell a demotion for Nancy Spears.

  4. I fail to see how this is, as Nancy put it, ‘…a unique item similar to a retailer variant, but with a cheaper buy in’.
    1. It’s not exclusive if every/any shop can potentially order it.
    2. It’s not at a cheaper buy in as a shop would need to spend $100s of dollars to get 1 copy. That is an extremely higher buy in.
    3. It’s a ratio variant. Period.

    1. Whats a ratio cover? Cover wise we have Cvr A,B. Then CVR PA, PB and PC. Then a 1:25 and a 1:100. All 5 covers count toward ratios.

      1. A ratio variant, as indicated by the name, is a variant that is printed in ratio. Hence the ratios of 1:25 and 1:100 in your description, Mike. The relationship between the numbers is known as a ratio. 🤔
        Eg. 1:25 means that the ratio between the open order covers and the incentive variant cover is 1 copy of the 1:25 variant for every 25 copies of the open order covers… That is a ratio variant. The more you know. 🌠

        1. PS. A ratio variant and an incentive variant are the same thing, with the incentive being at a ratio to the open order (1:10, 1:25, 1:50…1:450).

  5. See what im having trouble understanding about ur comment. Cover PA, PB and PC are not incentive or ratio covers. They are store variant covers with a low buy in. Which is an awesome idea. So what im tryin to understand is what u are sayibg is a ratio cover. And u can check that attitude at the door because im not in the mood to cater to ur inflated ego. If u have a problem with me then send it to me DM and not attack me in public

    1. Can you open order covers PA, PC & PB? If not, how do you qualify for them? As answered in the OP, you must order 50 copies of the open order books to qualify for the P covers. That makes them a ratio/incentive variant. I’m having trouble understanding why you think, or want to call, these P covers as ‘store variants’. I don’t see any correlation between these ratio variants and a store variant. It is, however, a moot point, as it is all just semantics and marketing strategies. Whether you call them ratios, incentives, store, or marketing variants, the market will determine the value based on availability. Nothing else.

      1. Ok. Thats where you are mistaken. You dont have to order any of the open order books to get these. If a retailer want cover PA , they must order 50+ cover PA. Same for PB and PC. These also qualify towards the 1:25 and the 1:100 and the 1:450(across all 3 issues)

        So hypothetically, if the retailer wanted the 3 premiums, they would buy (minimum) 50/50/50 plus whatever amount of the cvr A and B. So ratio wise they would get (6)1:25 and (1)1:100. Min. – if they only wanted cover PB they would order 50+ Of cvr PB.

        What retailers are trying to figure out right now is if they want to order all 5 covers. The buy in for them is 150 plus their normal amount in the standard covers. Some like the idea, others dont. Both sides have valid arguments. Not to promote anyones shop, but Frankies is selling all 3 as a bundle. Be sure to tell them CHU sent you.

        1. Taken from the DC retailer email :

          The minimum order for each Batman: Three Jokers Premium Variant Cover is 50 copies. For every 50 copies of all nine Premium Variant Covers ordered (450 copies total), retailers will receive one copy of the Batman: Three Jokers #3 “compilation” Premium Variant Cover for free, combining all nine Premium Variant Covers and the three main covers; collecting 12 of Fabok’s creepy and compelling headshots of The Joker into one cover.

          The Premium Variant Covers will qualify towards the 1:25 and 1:100 ratio variant covers of each issue of Batman: Three Jokers.

      2. I see your point, Mike, and yes I was mistaken. But, the PA, PB, and PC covers are not ‘store variants’, as we were discussing. They are simply open order variants that unlock a ratio variant at 50 copies per. Again though, it is just semantics…✌️

        1. They aren’t open to order. I can’t order 5 of them. I can’t order 3 of them. I order 50+ or I order 0.

          I have many subs who have standing requests for “all open to order” covers for specific titles. A typical issue of Batman has two such covers. A typical issue of Spawn has three. A typical issue of Undiscovered Country has two. Some Marvel titles will only have one, some like Immortal Hulk will vary between two to five. The DC 80th books have ten. I usually don’t order shelf copies of all the extra open to order covers. I tend to do even splits on books like Undiscovered Country or Rick and Morty. I tend to order 70% cover A for shelf copies of Spawn. And 80% for normal DCs.

          But my “all open to order” customers are getting zero copies of PA, PB, and PC of Batman Three Jokers. Because I’m not ordering the minimum 50 count of any of them. And I can’t order the 5 count that would actually sell.

          1. There’s going to be store variants for this too anyways so who cares about something with a gazillion covers. It could have three Jokers and the batwang and I still wouldn’t buy this.

              1. Not sure why any retailer would even try with their own exclusive.. gonna be a billion of these with all the retailers who cave into buying way more issues than they can sell.

          2. I dont blame you either and as a consumer I wouldn’t get mad. I would never order X amount of product that has a limited minimum buy in unless I had pre-orders or people committed to the minimum number or more.

            1. I mean if I had 30 customers interested I might trigger the 50 hoping I could sell at least 10 of the 20 shelf copies.

              It’s not THAT much different from the mental calculus for ratio variants. I’ll chase a 1 in 25 of a random 3.99 book if I have 12 subs. When it’s a 5.99 book I need more like 15 subs. And for 9.99 books I need the monthly cycle count to be at 20+ to chase.

              But DC is currently overestimating demand for their product. Unlike the other publishers that have cut back on titles to let stores and customers catch up, DC is trying to flood the market to gain share. I have 37 active subs for Batman. 4 of them have asked specifically for Three Jokers. Sure sounds like a title I’m gonna order 50 each of three variants for each issue. The only reason I’d do that is to spec on back issue sales. I’d rather order 50 extra copies of the next 3 issues of Thor and toss them in the back room for a year.

              1. Yeah, that makes sense. If you had a number close enough for subs and pulls requests, for sure, you got a little extra to put on shelf for the random walk ins.

                But yeah, this whole 50 minimum is a bad move on DC’s part. They’re not thinking about retailers and particularly the small retailers with such a decision. They’re turning retailers who cave to get the cover into consumers rather than retailers.

                It’s just bad for business if you buy X number of product when you only can sell Y number of the product.. X being greater than Y of course.. 😉

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