Fans hoping to be able to buy issues The Walking Dead 163 with the variant cover showing Rick Grimes dressed as Negan may be disappointed by the rarity.
Earlier this week, Undead Walking showed off the awesome variant covers for The Walking Dead issue #163. As in the past, it was announced there would be two versions: a full-color cover and one in black and white, both showing Rick Grimes dressed up as Negan.
However, what wasn’t clearly reported in the Skybound release about the covers was that they are retailer versions and that stores will need to order a lot of copies of the comic in order to get their hands on the two covers to have available for their patrons.
As discussed on the Make A Path Presents YouTube account and shown on the The Comic Mint, retailers have to order 200 copies to get a single issue of the full color variant cover. Things get even worse when it comes to the black and white version, which will take an order of 500 comics.
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For those living in smaller communities or who don’t have much pull with their choice of comic book shops, that means that getting their hands on these books will be very tough, especially now that the date for retailers to put in their purchase orders has passed.
Sadly, that means most collectors will be forced to go to sites like eBay to get their hands on a copy, where the black and white cover is averaging about $125 per issue and the color version has been seen as low as $24.99.
This is likely a way for Image Comics and Skybound to make sure their retailers have a way to make a better profit for February, since the cover price for issues of The Walking Dead 163 will only be 25 cents. However, for collectors wanting to own both of the covers featuring Rick Grimes dressed as Negan, the struggle to get their hands on the black and white version could be very costly.
Hopefully, Image Comics and Skybound make the color version of The Walking Dead‘s retail cover more accessible for fans in the future, particularly if a variant as painfully rare as the black and white version is going to be released. Good luck to all those hoping to pick up all 3 covers of issue 163 titled “Conquered” when it is released on February 1, 2017.