Basically, DC will be adding 'co-features', which is basically a backup story, to certain books. Starting in June, the first wave of books to get the co-feature treatment will be Teen Titans and Booster Gold, which will have backup stories featuring Ravager and Blue Beetle, respectively. These backup stories will be additional pages, which means you can still expect the regular 22 pages of content if you were a Teen Titans or Booster Gold reader.
Hit the jump for my thoughts on the price change and 'co-features'.
Extra Content - Nice job here. Makes it much easier to justify picking up a $3.99 book if you are at least getting extra content. Hopefully, this means about 8-10 pages for each backup. Any less and I could see this not making much difference.
Obscure Characters - Was quite pleased to see Blue Beetle and Ravager get the backup treatment. While it's hard to call them 'obscure' when they've each had their own miniseries or ongoing recently, but it's much better to spotlight lesser known or read characters than simply tacking another Batman or Superman story on random books.
Co-Feature Placement - I'm going to have this as a negative as well, but where DC actually placed these co-features was a nice move. Putting a Ravager backup in JLA would probably make little sense compared to the added value to someone already familiar with the character in Teen Titans. Similarly, Blue Beetle, while not a perfect fit for Booster Gold, at least tangently ties into that title and is another solid placement.
$3.99 Isn't $2.99 - Obviously, the worst part of this news is that the affected titles are now that much more expensive.
Co-Feature Placement - Like I said above, this also counts as a negative. I'm not sure why DC chose to up the price on lower selling titles, like Teen Titans and Booster Gold. They should have followed Marvel's line of thought and used higher selling titles, which are guaranteed to sell, for their $3.99 books. This would allow the guaranteed sellers to pick up the slack for the lower selling titles, which you could have left at $2.99.
Cancellations - Hands up, who honestly thinks Booster Gold and, to a lesser extent, Teen Titans didn't just get a death sentence handed to them? Neither are exactly tearing the sales charts.
Booster is selling roughly 25k books a month at the $2.99 pricepoint while Teen Titans is barely cracking 30k these days. Making these two low selling titles the only $3.99 books in DC's line is going to result in people dropping the books and fewer new readers jumping on. Do this to JLA or Batman and it's a different story, as they have mass appeal and will sell regardless of the price hike.
So, passing this increase off to these two titles seems, to me at least, like a cancellation waiting to happen.