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R.I.P. DC Direct — Long Live DC Collectibles

Continuing its efforts to rebrand and redefine all areas of itself, DC Entertainment today announced that its long-standing merchandise arm DC Direct has been relaunched as DC Collectibles. The changes aren’t in name only, of course, with the newly reorganized brand featuring an online store offering the entire range of products – and a couple of things that can’t be bought anywhere else.According to DC’s CCO Geoff Johns, as quoted in today’s announcement, the launch of DC Collectibles is part of the company’s “laser [focus] on what makes the products in this line special,” adding that the rebranded line “caters to fans looking for limited edition, authentic products based on our characters and stories, created by the same artists who work directly on those characters and stories.”

The new DC Collectibles store is due to open early next month, expanding the existing web presence for the brand into a storefront offering the existing product line as available through retailers with some interesting additional items only available through the DCC store: Initially, those will consist of A Flashpoint Action Figure Box Set that comes with two items unavailable elsewhere (An Emperor Aquaman Figure and $500 Wayne Casino Poker Chip, for the curious) and Blackest Night Green Lantern and Sinestro Bust, with a line of online-only art prints “branching out beyond comic book artwork” being added to the store at a later date.

Retailers concerned that the new online store may impact their own collectibles market may feel slightly relieved to know that the DCC store will be offering details of the users’ closest direct market stores for those who don’t want to buy items online.

News of the DC Collectibles launch comes on the heels of Mattel announcing the cancellation of its toy line based on DC’s Young Justice cartoon, although they took pains to reassure fans that “…Our partnership with DC is stronger than ever and we couldn’t be more excited for all the amazing new collector and kid toys to come!” Perhaps DCC’s second round of online exclusive product should be based on their various DC Nation cartoon series…

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