All the numbers on October’s sales are rolling in. ICv2 has
Dollar Analysis:MARVEL RETURNS TO #1 COMIC PUBLISHER IN OCTOBER
Also, Bookscan top 20: OCTOBER 2016 BOOKSCAN–TOP 20 ADULT GRAPHIC NOVELS
Champions #1 is listed as having sold only 328,000 copies, less than the 400K that Marvel claimed. Apparently the Gamestop variant covers did not go through the typical Diamond mechanism. However, the Loot Crate effect was in the house, as John Jackson Miller explains:
Well, we thought we were done with it. After an absence from the sales rankings of more than a year, the repackaging service Loot Crate again in October vaulted an unlikely lead comic book atop Diamond Comic Distributors chart of best-selling comics.
Boom Studios‘ Big Trouble in Little China/Escape from New York #1, in addition to having one of the longer names for any best-selling comic book, becomes the publisher’s first top-seller; back in May 2016, it just missed with its previous Loot Crate offering, the second-place Bravest Warriors: Tales from the Holo John #1. That was the last Loot Crate item to make a big statistical splash.
While it’s good to see comics circulating in a variety of places, neither issue was likely anywhere near a top-five book within the Direct Market. Diamond is well aware of the disconnect, as evidenced by its news release; the lead item is that Marvel’s Champions #1 was the distributor’s top comic in dollar terms, with the Boom title mentioned later in the first paragraph. Since Loot Crate variant copies do not result in many — if any — dollars to the distributor, Loot Crate copies add little to a book’s ranking on the dollar charts.
Diamond shipped 9.64 million comic books in the month, including those Loot Crate copies; the true number going to comics shops is a few hundred thousand copies lower. But that’s still enough to be well ahead of October 2015‘s total — and the dollar total for the whole Direct Market, $51.29 million, is just slightly above the mark set a year earlier. That has the result of keeping the whole year on pace for an increase over last year, if just barely.
As you can see from all the above, October’s numbers are skewed a bit by Loot Crate, even though the 421,625 listed sales for Big Trouble are down a bit from previous Loot Crate books — Loot Crate has more than 600,000 subscribers worldwide.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.