by Paul O’Brien
Let’s be blunt: January was a pretty terrible month for the direct market. Compared with January 2010, comic book sales were down by 23% in units and 22% in dollars. The picture for graphic novels wasn’t much better. In part, it’s because of a lack of really big titles; but to be honest, there seems to have been a lack of titles across the board. The number 300 title in January was LADY MECHANIKA #1, with estimated orders of only 1,291. That’s extraordinarily low. In December, it took more than three times that many sales to make the chart.
As usual, Marvel had the largest share of the direct market, and the margin was bigger than normal – they led DC by 39% to 26% in dollars, and 42% to 32% in units.
The big release this month, of course, is FANTASTIC FOUR #587, with the death of the Human Torch. There’s also INVINCIBLE IRON MAN #500, the AGE OF X ALPHA one-shot and a handful of new minis. But it’s a quiet month.
As always, thanks to ICV2.com for permission to use these figures.