25 Cents per Page?

I just finished reading Giant-Size Little Marvel: AVX #4, and was particularly offended by the fact that it contained:

  1. A double gate-fold spread for upcoming Marvel Comics.
  2. A lovely four-page fight scene... split across a page turn.

The fight scene would have been mighty impressive, spread wide across that double-gate-fold! But advertising got priority and pushed the actual purchased content into second place. Hey, Marvel! I'm the one paying for this story!

That got me into begrudging mood, and I did the maths on that $3.99 comic with its 20 pages of story (and 19 pages of advertising). So here's an interesting Gedankenexperiment, as the Germans say...

Imagine you had that four bucks in your pocket as 16 shiny quarter dollar coins, and you opened this comic and could read the first four pages for free. Now imagine you had to hand over one of those 25c coins for every extra page you read.

Would you keep paying right to the end of the story? Does 25c per page feel like good value as you read and look at the artwork?

What if it cost you 30c per page, but you got 5c refund for every advertisement page that you looked at? Because that's how comic book pricing works, the advertisers are paying for you to read their material.