The new Fantastic Four by John Byrne Omnibus is out and it’s ridiculously heavy. Amazon does a nice job of listing book specs and lets us know this book is 7.3 pounds and 2.5 inches thick. Or to put it another way, unmanageable.
Marvel seems to have started the omnibus craze and is on a roll, providing more and more material in one volume. The problem is you can’t read them anywhere except on a table, since the weight and girth make it more than a person can hold for any length of time.
I picked up the Thor By Walter Simonson Omnibus the summer because Diamond was offering an amazing deal and I didn’t have all the material already in a collected format. It’s 7.7 pounds and 3 inches thick: again, unwieldy and a serious health risk.
It doesn’t have to be this way. Collected material as an omnibus should be issued as multiple volumes in a slipcase. Here are two recent examples: The Collected Calvin And Hobbes and Usagi Yojimbo Special Edition.
Here are two sets of books that collect a large amount of material, yet present to the reader in a size that can be held comfortably with one hand. Marvel, take notice!