Here’s the Comixology sales chart for the week of June 6th. Walking Dead is on top, which isn’t all that unusual. That said, it’s awfully interesting to see Justice League’s debut issue chart ahead of Batman.
|Comixology Rank||Issue||Previous Issue Print Sales Est.||Previous Issue Diamond Rank|
|1||The Walking Dead Issue #180||73,978||10|
|2||Justice League (2018-) Issue #1||N/A (43K)||N/A|
|3||Batman (2016-) Issue #48||96,448||7|
|4||Man of Steel (2018-) Issue #2||N/A|
|5||Immortal Hulk (2018-) Issue #1||N/A|
|6||Injustice 2 (2017-) Issue #61||Digital First|
|7||Star Wars (2015-) Issue #49||59,335||14|
|8||X-Men Red (2018-) Issue #5||56,531||16|
|9||Batman: Prelude to the Wedding: Nightwing vs. Hush (2018-) Issue #1||25,986*||83|
|10||Paper Girls Issue #21||22,366||99-Feb|
|11||Wonder Woman (2016-) Annual Issue #2||34,296*||49|
|12||Infinity Countdown (2018-) Issue #4 (of 5)||67,963||12|
|13||X-Men Gold (2017-) Issue #29||37,490||43|
|14||Nightwing (2016-) Issue #45||25,986||83|
|15||Doctor Strange (2018-) Issue #1||N/A (30K)|
|16||Astonishing X-Men (2017-) Issue #12||30,616||62|
|17||Deathstroke (2016-) Issue #32||38,956||40|
|18||Hunt For Wolverine: Weapon Lost (2018) Issue #2 (of 4)||138,584||4|
|19||Green Lanterns (2016-) Issue #48||24,173||96|
|20||Deadpool (2018-) Issue #1||N/A (24K)||94|
This chart is going to suffer a little from the May Diamond estimates being delayed. We’re now looking at 2 months standard attrition vs. the last recorded issue estimates and that is going to color the comparison a bit higher than they might really be.
Walking Dead outselling everything else on Comixology is totally normal. Justice League #1 outselling Batman… now that’s interesting. That means a ton of people showed up to try it out and there aren’t any variant covers in digital to juice that chart position. You figured the first issue would outsell Batman in print, but in digital it wasn’t a sure a thing. JL is definitely selling at a faster clip than the previous series was (which ended up at around 43K in print).
After Batman, we have a the second issue of Man of Steel and the debut of Immortal Hulk. It’s a little hard to place these, as below them Injustice has seemed fairly steady as the equivalent of perhaps a 45K print book and above them Batman bounces between mid-90Ks and a bit over 100K. Could these two be selling at the equivalent of 90K print? Sure. Could they only be selling at the equivalent of 50K print? That’s a possibility, too. In either case, that’s an awfully good showing for a Hulk comic. Hulk hasn’t been a big seller in a few years.
After Injustice, we have Star Wars and X-Men: Red. Star Wars has been selling below Injustice lately and I suspect the attrition would be showing if we had the May estimates. Ditto for X-Men: Red, which has been enjoying an usually strong launch for a recent Marvel title. Or maybe Injustice is just way up, but I find that less likely.
Next comes the Nightwing installment of the Batman wedding preludes. Your glass can be half empty or half full. If you think that’s a core Bat-title, you’re probably disappointed it’s several slots below where Detective would be. On the other hand, that looks like it’s probably the equivalent of 10K print copies ahead of Nightwing‘s solo title. From that perspective, it’s a win.
Paper Girls, as Image A-list titles tend to do, shows up higher on the digital chart than it does the print. The Wonder Woman Annual is in the vicinity of where you’d expect it to be based on the regular series, perhaps a bit higher. Infinity Countdown, though… still not producing nearly the numbers as print and one wonders if that’s a sign of how much variants and incentives are skewing the print orders.
X-Men: Gold is likely under-performing a tad in digital, but that’s been the trend. Nightwing is over-performing in digital, which is also a trend.
It’s a little hard to say where Doctor Strange is little up or a lot up and that really depends on whether Deathstroke and its showdown with Batman arc is under-performing relative to print or Astonishing X-Men is over-performing. It’s more likely Astonishing is about where you’d expect it to be and Strange is having a slightly elevated launch. Really, 30K (where it was at the end of the Cates run) isn’t a bad number for that title, given the last year or two and it seems to be the equivalent or slightly over that.
Another issue of Hunt for Wolverine and another issue that the Comixology audience doesn’t seem to be real enthused about. All-New Wolverine would appear to do better on this platform. Green Lanterns is about where you’d expect it to be, but Deadpool doesn’t appear to be improving with the relaunch. Looks like minimal, if any change from the previous series. So much for a movie bump…
Big winners for the week? Justice League and Immortal Hulk. Maybe Man of Steel, maybe not. Depends on the actual number and your expectations.
Methodology and standard disclaimers:
The initial methodology is to compare the current issue on the Comixology top 20 chart (issues pulled the evening of 6/10) with the last issue we have print sales estimates for from the Comichron April chart, with the exception of the last issue of Paper Girls being from February.
The conventional wisdom that’s been handed down over the last few years is that he digital audience has more of less the same reading habits as the Direct Market Print audience. I’ve had multiple publishers tell me that digital sales of new issues are roughly 10-15% of print sales and the titles more or less have the same proportional popularity in digital as in print. Maybe a couple titles switch places on the sales ranking list, but largely the same. The bestsellers on the newsstand were not always the same bestsellers as in the Direct Market, so it doesn’t seem like that should necessarily be the case with digital. There will be a little bit of mismatch because these are more weekly than monthly ranks and it isn’t clear exactly how Comixology defines the reporting periods, but if you look at comics sales, you learn to live with the data available.
Want to learn more about how comics publishing and digital comics work? Try Todd’s book, Economics of Digital Comics