DC Comics Month-to-Month Sales: July 2011

Here’s a number for you: Out of 65 DC Universe comic books published in July, 32 were by the writer/artist creative teams listed in the solicitations — less than half of the bunch.

Most of the others were either completely drawn by guest artists or had help from one or more of them. And for a couple, even the story credit changed. Not counting the six DC Retroactive books, the video-game adaptations and the New Wave titles, none of which are involved in the day-to-day of the DC Universe, the strike rate is 22 out of 55. So, presuming that’s not a coincidence, it looks like the big DC relaunch was about 40% well-planned, at this juncture.

Marv Wolfman: The man who invented the Crisis

Here is a Village Voice interview with Marv Wolfman,
which is interesting for many reasons. Because Wolfman is always a thoughtful commenter on the comics industry and its may pressures, but also because CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS –and NEW TEEN TITANS by the same Wolfman/Perez team — is to the New 52 generation what Fantastic Four #1 (the 1961 one) was to so many before it. With its sweeping changes, dramatic deaths and multiple universes, it set the stage for many a crisis to come. And, famously, there was talk after CoIE of doing a line-wide issue #1 reboot. The idea lay dormant until now. But Wolfman points out that for an event to be an event it should have actual motivation:

New 52: Well that was fun

Wow, we’re zonked and we didn’t even do anything. But the beehive of activity over this weeks New 52 debut was exhausting just to follow on twitter. Yesterday Jim Lee and Geoff Johns made a barnstorming tour of NYC comics shops, calling ahead and then showing up for flash-style 45 minute signings. They hit Manhattan, Hanleys, Forbidden Planet and St. Marks and somewhere in between Lee did an NPR interview.

This enthusiastic blitzkrieg was somewhat reminiscent of the 90s comics days, when Image signings required giant tents, creators did crazy signing tours, and unsold skids of comics were sometimes left in the wake. It was a silly time, yes, but there was genuine fan excitement; one senses Jim Lee’s hand behind some of the current promotion, and there has definitely been excitement generated. Even Marvelites were complimentary, perhaps reaching the zenith when Lee retweeted Marvel’s CB Cebulski retweeting writer Nick Spencer: