Comic Book Terms – Cover Date

What is a Cover Date? Most comics include a “cover date” on their covers, but this is rarely the actual date of publication, even though it can easily be referred to as such, not least for ease of reference. Much like magazines (which are typically cover-dated a month ahead) most comics are cover dated a couple of months ahead of their being published. The reasons behind this date back to comics being available on a newsstand, rather than through the direct market in a comic shop:
“This month was not the month the book went on sale, it was the month the issue was to be removed from the newsstand in the event the book did not sell.”

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