by Marc-Oliver Frisch

While the economic crisis still didn’t seem to have any noticeable effect on the periodical comics direct market in November, the unplanned absence of several major titles certainly did. In the case of DC Comics, the offenders were – take a deep breath – Final Crisis, All Star Batman, Justice League of America, Green Lantern, Final Crisis: Revelations and Superman/Batman; and Batman, which was meant to have two issues out, instead of just one. Consequently, in a drop that mirrors the one back in September, the average DC Comics periodical sold a whopping 13% fewer units than it did in October. With the crossover storylines “New Krypton” and “JSA: Kingdom Come” and the debut of the Kevin Smith vehicle Batman: Cacophony, DC had a few potential new top-sellers out in November, but none of them did especially well.

At DC’s Vertigo sublabel, P. Craig Russell’s new comics adaptation of an old Sandman prose story by Neil Gaiman was moderately successful, but not successful enough to noticeably affect the imprint’s flagging average sales. WildStorm tried to tap into two more Hollywood franchises with new comics adaptations of The X-Files and something called Push, meanwhile. Like most of their recent avalanche of licensed properties, however, they were given the cold shoulder by comics retailers.

See below for the details, and please mind the small print at the end of the column. Thanks to Milton Griepp and ICv2.com for the permission to use their figures. An overview of ICv2.com‘s estimates can be found here.

—–

2 - BATMAN
11/2001: Batman #597 --  40,682*
11/2002: Batman #609 --  95,065*
11/2003: Batman #621 --  96,784 [100,754]
11/2004: Batman #634 --  63,769
11/2005: Batman #647 --  69,718
11/2006: Batman #658 --  94,349
11/2006: Batman #659 --  90,651
-------------------------------
11/2007: Batman #671 --  76,764 (- 0.2%) [ 80,440]
12/2007: Batman #672 --  71,189 (- 7.3%)
01/2008: Batman #673 --  69,234 (- 2.8%)
02/2008: Batman #674 --  68,208 (- 1.5%)
03/2008: --
04/2008: Batman #675 --  71,138 (+ 4.3%)
05/2008: Batman #676 -- 105,039 (+47.9%) [122,877]
05/2008: Batman #677 --  96,116 (- 8.5%) [111,065]
06/2008: --
07/2008: Batman #678 -- 103,213 (+ 7.4%)
08/2008: Batman #679 -- 103,588 (+ 0.4%)
09/2008: --
10/2008: Batman #680 -- 103,941 (+ 0.3%)
11/2008: Batman #681 -- 103,151 (- 0.8%)
----------------
6 months: + 2.6%
1 year  : +34.4%
2 years : +11.5%
5 years : + 6.6%

Well, this is very unusual.

All throughout the “Batman RIP” story, Batman managed to sell well above 100K. For the last four issues, it seems like somebody nailed it to 103,000 copies and went away for an extended vacation. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a blockbuster storyline hold on to its audience as consistently well as this one.

In theory, now, this should be very good news for DC. In practice, of course, it’s nothing of the sort. Because, as you may have heard by now, they rather blew it. The solicitation copy for Batman #681, a story titled “Batman RIP: Conclusion,” promised, among other things, “the final fate” of Batman, “the horrifying and shocking truth” about the big villain of the piece and – brace yourself – “an ending you’ll never see coming.” Well, I guess they did deliver on the latter. In case you missed the grand finale: It consisted of a helicopter crash; both Batman and the villain, whose identity remains obscure, were aboard the helicopter when it crashed. And they disappeared.

And that was it. No “final fate” in sight. “Shocking truth” cancelled.

And so, when two hundred thousand eyebrows raised in unison caused a minor earthquake at the DC Comics offices in New York, DC Universe editor Dan DiDio went on Newsarama to defend the lack of a payoff. According to Mr. DiDio, the real ending to “Batman RIP” will, in fact, appear in the delayed Final Crisis #6, currently scheduled for January. But because the eventual “Batman RIP” paperback collection – which, of course, won’t include Final Crisis #6 – will require some closure of its own, Mr. DiDio explains, an inconclusive faux ending was needed for Batman #681. Because, evidently, DC Comics’ extensive probing of the market has revealed that the only people who crave inconclusive faux endings more than the followers of monthly periodicals are those who prefer paperback collections. (The latter is pure conjecture on my part, I should add. DC didn’t share their market research concerning inconclusive faux endings with me.)

So, all in all, whether the great commercial success of “Batman RIP” is a blessing or a curse for DC remains to be seen. Clearly, a lot of people liked this story while it was going on. And clearly, DC utterly and blatantly botched what should have been a big payoff. Who knows, maybe those 100,000 folks who turned up at the store every month will just shrug and move on to Final Crisis #6, as DC would like them to.

I’m rather skeptical, though.

As usual for the duration of the “Batman RIP” story, there was a 1-for-25 variant-cover edition boosting the book’s sales.



—–

9/20/23 - JSA: KINGDOM COME SPECIAL

11/2008: Superman #1 -- 72,862

11/2008: Magog #1    -- 55,560

11/2008: Kingdom #1  -- 57,205
10 - JUSTICE SOCIETY OF AMERICA

11/2001: JSA #30             --  40,763*

11/2002: JSA #42             --  41,829*

11/2003: JSA #54             --  45,169

11/2004: JSA #67             --  47,725

11/2005: JSA #79             --  52,783

---------------------------------------

11/2007: --

12/2007: Justice Society #11 --  89,613 (-  9.9%)

01/2008: --

02/2008: Justice Society #12 --  84,162 (-  6.1%)

02/2008: Justice Society #13 --  82,702 (-  1.7%)

03/2008: --

04/2008: Justice Society #14 --  80,507 (-  2.7%)

05/2008: Justice Society #15 --  78,311 (-  2.7%)

06/2008: Justice Society #16 --  77,328 (-  1.3%)

07/2008: Justice Society #17 --  75,532 (-  2.3%)

08/2008: Justice Society #18 --  73,485 (-  2.7%)

09/2008: --

10/2008: Justice Society #19 --  72,073 (-  1.9%)

11/2008: Justice Society #20 --  71,355 (-  1.0%)

----------------

6 months: - 0.9%

1 year  :   n.a.

2 years :   n.a.

5 years : +58.0%

The follow-up to the 1996 hit series Kingdom Come that’s been simmering in Justice Society of America for quite some time spread out into three one-shot specials in November. Given that the story hasn’t been holding up that well to begin with in the mother title, I suppose the numbers for the one-shots are decent enough.

Not unexpectedly, Kingdom Come Special: Superman, which was written and drawn by Alex Ross, leads the way in terms of sales. It charts slightly ahead of Justice Society proper, which Ross has been co-plotting for the last year-and-a-half. For the Kingdom and Magog books, there’s a significant drop-off by more than 10,000 units. One was written by longtime Justice Society writer and reliable sales draw Geoff Johns, the other by one of DC’s current go-to writers for spin-off books, but curiously, retailers don’t seem to have cared much about that.

All four comics were promoted with 1-for-10 variant-cover editions.

—–

11 - BATMAN: CACOPHONY

11/2008: Cacophony #1 of 3 -- 69,522

Didn’t Kevin Smith used to be a superstar creator? Five years ago, it certainly seemed that way: Spider-Man/Black Cat #1 charted with estimated initial orders of 118,204 back in June 2002; Daredevil: The Target #1 with 99,105 in November 2002. And those were initial orders only, back then, so the actual numbers were probably a little higher. Compared to that, a Batman comic with Smith’s name on it shifting around 70K seems rather modest.

So, what happened?

Well, there’s the Smith’s bad track record when it comes to handing in scripts, of course. His Daredevil and Green Arrow runs were hideously late to begin with, back in the day, but those delays are tame compared to what came after. The aforementioned Spider-Man/Black Cat miniseries finally finished its run – which, to be fair, ended up being extended by two issues – in January 2006. Daredevil: The Target #2 still hasn’t seen the light of day now, six years later, and probably never will. Once upon a time, Marvel also proudly announced having signed Smith to an exclusive contract for the purposes of launching a new Spider-Man series. Of course, nothing ever materialized. So, yes, Smith’s well-documented unreliability is probably a factor here – after all, who wants to invest in stories that will never be finished? (That said, Batman: Cacophony seems to be sticking to its schedule. It won’t be out on December 31, as the solicitations said, but that’s because Diamond moved the release date for all December 31 product to January 2 instead, evidently, so it’s hardly Smith’s fault.)

There’s also Smith’s track record as a filmmaker to consider, however. Back when Bob Schreck and Joe Quesada first brought Smith to comics, after all, cult hits like Clerks and Chasing Amy were what made his name in the credits a hot commodity. In the last ten years, though, Smith has been known for modest retreats like Clerks II and the all-out bomb Jersey Girl. And his latest film, Zack and Miri Make a Porno, got rather mixed reviews as well. Right now, in other words, Smith’s track record happens to be that of a filmmaker who used to be really good in the nineties and a comics writer who turns in the script for the first issue and then disappears, sometimes for good.

Put the two together, and 70K for a Batman comic – and one that was promoted with a 1-for-25 and a 1-for-50 variant-cover edition, to boot, so the number is more inflated than usual – doesn’t look so terrible, all of a sudden.

—–

14 - DETECTIVE COMICS

11/2001: Detective Comics #764 -- 37,712*

11/2002: Detective Comics #776 -- 39,528*

11/2003: Detective Comics #788 -- 37,543

11/2004: Detective Comics #800 -- 52,399

11/2005: Detective Comics #813 -- 38,338

11/2006: Detective Comics #825 -- 58,940

----------------------------------------

11/2007: Detective Comics #838 -- 60,267 (+17.3%) [65,293]

12/2007: Detective Comics #839 -- 62,297 (+ 3.4%) [65,773]

01/2008: Detective Comics #840 -- 51,579 (-17.2%)

02/2008: Detective Comics #841 -- 50,535 (- 2.0%)

03/2008: Detective Comics #842 -- 49,425 (- 2.2%)

04/2008: Detective Comics #843 -- 48,431 (- 2.0%)

05/2008: Detective Comics #844 -- 48,394 (- 0.1%)

06/2008: Detective Comics #845 -- 48,920 (+ 1.2%)

07/2008: Detective Comics #846 -- 72,417 (+48.0%)

08/2008: Detective Comics #847 -- 71,134 (- 1.8%)

09/2008: Detective Comics #848 -- 68,306 (- 4.0%)

10/2008: Detective Comics #849 -- 65,878 (- 3.6%)

11/2008: Detective Comics #850 -- 64,196 (- 2.6%)

----------------

6 months: +32.7%

1 year  : + 6.5%

2 years : + 8.9%

5 years : +71.0%

Detective Comics already enjoyed increased sales thanks to a “Batman RIP” tie-in arc, so the obligatory anniversary issue boost for #850 was probably swallowed up by that.

—-

17 - ACTION COMICS

11/2001: Action Comics #785 -- 38,188* 

11/2002: Action Comics #797 -- 31,238*

11/2003: Action Comics #809 -- 29,819

11/2004: Action Comics #821 -- 38,880

11/2005: Action Comics #833 -- 44,613

11/2006: Action Comics #845 -- 66,742 [71,135]

-------------------------------------

11/2007: Action Comics #859 -- 54,572 (- 0.0%)

12/2007: Action Comics #860 -- 56,254 (+ 3.1%)

01/2008: Action Comics #861 -- 56,093 (- 0.3%)

02/2008: Action Comics #862 -- 55,658 (- 0.8%)

03/2008: --

04/2008: Action Comics #863 -- 56,882 (+ 2.2%)

04/2008: Action Comics #864 -- 48,438 (-14.9%)

05/2008: Action Comics #865 -- 46,764 (- 3.5%)

06/2008: Action Comics #866 -- 50,158 (+ 7.3%) [53,198]

07/2008: Action Comics #867 -- 49,363 (- 1.6%)

08/2008: Action Comics #868 -- 49,556 (+ 0.4%)

09/2008: Action Comics #869 -- 49,597 (+ 0.1%)

10/2008: Action Comics #870 -- 57,407 (+15.8%)

11/2008: Action Comics #871 -- 58,547 (+ 2.0%)

----------------

6 months: +25.2%

1 year  : + 7.3%

2 years : -12.3%

5 years : +96.3%

Action Comics joined the “New Krypton” crossover in November, resulting in another slight increase over October’s “death of Pa Kent” issue.

—–

21 - FINAL CRISIS ONE-SHOTS

07/2008: Requiem #1   -- 74,310 [80,069]

08/2008: DCU: LWaT #1 -- 67,063

10/2008: Submit #1    -- 57,490

10/2008: RotRL #1     -- 76,407 [80,218]

11/2008: Resist #1    -- 56,931

Final Crisis: Resist is the lowest-selling of the Final Crisis one-shots to date, despite the fact that it’s written by Grant Morrison himself.

October’s impassionately titled Final Crisis: Rage of the Red Lanterns #1 made the chart again in November with 3,811 additional units, on the other hand, which brings the total count to 80,218. Both books were supported with 50/50 variant-cover editions, as usual.

—–

24 - SUPERMAN

11/2001: Superman #176 --  41,182*

11/2002: Superman #188 --  33,758*

11/2003: Superman #199 --  33,429

11/2004: Superman #211 -- 106,469 [110,683]

11/2005: Superman #223 --  69,739

11/2006: Superman #657 --  62,327

---------------------------------

11/2007: Superman #670 --  48,407 (+ 2.4%)

12/2007: Superman #671 --  45,290 (- 6.4%)

01/2008: Superman #672 --  44,656 (- 1.4%)

02/2008: Superman #673 --  41,580 (- 6.9%)

03/2008: Superman #674 --  41,715 (+ 0.3%)

04/2008: Superman #675 --  54,855 (+31.5%)

05/2008: Superman #676 --  45,644 (-16.8%)

06/2008: Superman #677 --  54,634 (+19.7%)

07/2008: Superman #678 --  47,670 (-12.8%)

08/2008: Superman #679 --  46,615 (- 2.2%)

09/2008: Superman #680 --  46,585 (- 0.1%)

10/2008: Superman #681 --  54,611 (+17.2%) [57,212]

11/2008: Superman #682 --  55,435 (+ 1.5%)

----------------

6 months: +21.5%

1 year  : +14.5%

2 years : -11.1%

5 years : +65.8%

Superman gets another slight increase out of “New Krypton,” which, I guess, is a good sign. Plus, October’s issue #681 sold another 2,601 units in November. For the duration of the crossover, the book is supported with 1-for-10 variant-cover editions.

—–

27 - NIGHTWING

11/2001: Nightwing #63  -- 34,543*

11/2002: Nightwing #75  -- 31,352*

11/2003: Nightwing #87 --  29,674

11/2004: Nightwing #99  -- 33,708

11/2005: Nightwing #114 -- 36,421

11/2006: Nightwing #126 -- 36,145

---------------------------------

11/2007: Nightwing #138 -- 46,757 (+64.9%) [52,282]

12/2007: Nightwing #139 -- 49,291 (+ 5.4%) [52,607]

01/2008: Nightwing #140 -- 32,305 (-34.5%)

02/2008: Nightwing #141 -- 30,980 (- 4.1%)

03/2008: Nightwing #142 -- 30,253 (- 2.4%)

04/2008: Nightwing #143 -- 29,914 (- 1.1%)

05/2008: Nightwing #144 -- 29,367 (- 1.8%)

06/2008: Nightwing #145 -- 29,435 (+ 0.2%)

07/2008: Nightwing #146 -- 29,494 (+ 0.2%)

08/2008: Nightwing #147 -- 56,300 (+90.9%)

09/2008: Nightwing #148 -- 53,210 (- 5.5%)

10/2008: Nightwing #149 -- 50,588 (- 4.9%)

11/2008: Nightwing #150 -- 50,993 (+ 0.8%)

----------------

6 months: +73.6%

1 year  : + 9.1%

2 years : +41.1%

5 years : +71.8%

Nightwing sales were already way above their usual level thanks to the book’s “Batman RIP” tie-in, so the increase for the anniversary issue is rather modest. There was a 1-for-10 variant-cover edition which probably contributed to it.

—–

34 - SUPERGIRL

11/2001: Supergirl #64 --  21,126*

11/2002: Supergirl #76 --  19,735*

11/2005: Supergirl #3  --  99,990 [101,910]

11/2006: Supergirl #11 --  62,544

---------------------------------

11/2007: Supergirl #23 --  45,460 (+ 8.9%)

12/2007: Supergirl #24 --  37,922 (-16.6%)

01/2008: Supergirl #25 --  36,459 (- 3.9%)

02/2008: Supergirl #26 --  34,186 (- 6.2%)

03/2008: Supergirl #27 --  32,596 (- 4.7%)

04/2008: Supergirl #28 --  31,379 (- 3.7%)

05/2008: Supergirl #29 --  30,192 (- 3.8%)

06/2008: Supergirl #30 --  29,553 (- 2.1%)

07/2008: Supergirl #31 --  28,813 (- 2.5%)

08/2008: Supergirl #32 --  28,114 (- 2.4%)

09/2008: Supergirl #33 --  27,609 (- 1.8%)

10/2008: Supergirl #34 --  33,958 (+23.0%)

11/2008: Supergirl #35 --  45,518 (+34.0%)

----------------

6 months: +50.8%

1 year  : + 0.1%

2 years : -27.2%

As Supergirl joins the “New Krypton” crossover, it gets another very solid sales boost on top of the one that greeted the new creative team in October. And for once, it’s a genuine boost: Although Supergirl #35 was promoted with a 1-for-10 variant-cover edition, so was the previous issue, so that’s not a factor in the additional increase.

This is good news for Supergirl, obviously. If the almost 20,000 units added to the book’s sales between October and November are any indication, DC finally seem to have found something that works in terms of turning the free-fall around. Whether it lasts after the crossover is another question entirely, of course, but it’s a good start.

—–

35/36/38/40 - TRINITY

06/2008: Trinity #1  -- 88,044 

06/2008: Trinity #2  -- 79,495 (- 9.7%)

06/2008: Trinity #3  -- 76,224 (- 4.1%)

06/2008: Trinity #4  -- 73,448 (- 3.6%)

07/2008: Trinity #5  -- 68,351 (- 6.9%)

07/2008: Trinity #6  -- 66,624 (- 2.5%)

07/2008: Trinity #7  -- 65,509 (- 1.7%)

07/2008: Trinity #8  -- 64,220 (- 2.0%)

07/2008: Trinity #9  -- 62,252 (- 3.1%)

08/2008: Trinity #10 -- 60,249 (- 3.2%)

08/2008: Trinity #11 -- 59,356 (- 1.5%)

08/2008: Trinity #12 -- 58,151 (- 2.0%)

08/2008: Trinity #13 -- 57,284 (- 1.5%)

09/2008: Trinity #14 -- 53,736 (- 6.2%)

09/2008: Trinity #15 -- 53,101 (- 1.2%)

09/2008: Trinity #16 -- 52,316 (- 1.5%)

09/2008: Trinity #17 -- 51,318 (- 1.9%)

10/2008: Trinity #18 -- 49,174 (- 4.2%)

10/2008: Trinity #19 -- 48,551 (- 1.3%)

10/2008: Trinity #20 -- 47,927 (- 1.3%)

10/2008: Trinity #21 -- 47,252 (- 1.4%)

10/2008: Trinity #22 -- 46,638 (- 1.3%)

11/2008: Trinity #23 -- 44,971 (- 3.6%)

11/2008: Trinity #24 -- 44,498 (- 1.1%)

11/2008: Trinity #25 -- 43,804 (- 1.6%)

11/2008: Trinity #26 -- 43,210 (- 1.4%)

November was the halfway mark for Trinity. At this stage, the numbers don’t look impressive by any stretch. While the steady one-point-something trickle would be bad enough as it is, the larger drops in the first week of each month suggest that Trinity is still losing readers faster than retailers can adjust their orders.

—–

39 - GREEN LANTERN CORPS

11/2006: Green Lantern Corps #6  -- 41,089

------------------------------------------

11/2007: Green Lantern Corps #18 -- 55,838 (- 5.7%) [59,049]

12/2007: Green Lantern Corps #19 -- 50,516 (- 9.5%)

01/2008: Green Lantern Corps #20 -- 44,607 (-11.7%) [48,577]

02/2008: Green Lantern Corps #21 -- 47,582 (+ 6.7%)

03/2008: Green Lantern Corps #22 -- 46,736 (- 1.8%)

04/2008: Green Lantern Corps #23 -- 46,780 (+ 0.1%)

05/2008: Green Lantern Corps #24 -- 46,948 (+ 0.4%)

06/2008: Green Lantern Corps #25 -- 47,399 (+ 1.0%)

07/2008: Green Lantern Corps #26 -- 46,098 (- 2.8%)

08/2008: Green Lantern Corps #27 -- 46,045 (- 0.1%)

09/2008: Green Lantern Corps #28 -- 44,939 (- 2.4%)

10/2008: Green Lantern Corps #29 -- 46,316 (+ 3.1%)

11/2008: Green Lantern Corps #30 -- 43,600 (- 5.9%)

----------------

6 months: - 7.1%

1 year  : -21.9%

2 years : + 6.1%

The increase in October seems to have been a blip, but Green Lantern Corps keeps doing very well, overall.

Green Lantern #36, which was meant to be out in November (it would already have been late then, mind you) still hasn’t shipped as I’m writing this. It’s currently meant to come out on January 2, apparently.

—–

41 - BATMAN AND THE OUTSIDERS

11/2003: Outsiders #6  -- 48,160

11/2004: --

11/2005: Outsiders #30 -- 44,682

11/2006: Outsiders #42 -- 35,598

--------------------------------

11/2007: Batsiders #1  -- 60,690 (+58.8%)

11/2007: Batsiders #2  -- 42,827 (-29.4%)

12/2007: Batsiders #3  -- 40,371 (- 5.7%)

01/2008: --

02/2008: Batsiders #4  -- 37,903 (- 6.1%)

03/2008: Batsiders #5  -- 36,797 (- 2.9%)

04/2008: Batsiders #6  -- 36,551 (- 0.7%)

05/2008: Batsiders #7  -- 35,071 (- 4.1%)

06/2008: Batsiders #8  -- 34,640 (- 1.2%)

07/2008: Batsiders #9  -- 34,401 (- 0.7%)

08/2008: Batsiders #10 -- 33,645 (- 2.2%)

09/2008: Batsiders #11 -- 49,945 (+48.5%)

10/2008: Batsiders #12 -- 46,649 (- 6.6%)

11/2008: Batsiders #13 -- 42,939 (- 8.0%)

----------------

6 months: +22.4%

1 year  : -29.3%

2 years : +20.6%

5 years : -10.8%

The November issue still tied in with “Batman RIP,” but the numbers are noticeably dropping back towards their usual level.

—–

42 - TITANS

11/2001: Titans #35     -- 25,630*

11/2002: Titans #47     -- 21,637* 

---------------------------------

11/2007: TTE Special #1 -- 49,735

12/2007: --

01/2008: --

02/2008: --

03/2008: --

04/2008: Titans #1      -- 75,584 (+52.0%)

05/2008: Titans #2      -- 57,358 (-24.1%)

06/2008: Titans #3      -- 54,512 (- 5.0%)

07/2008: --

08/2008: --

09/2008: Titans #4      -- 51,755 (- 5.1%)

09/2008: Titans #5      -- 49,959 (- 3.5%)

10/2008: Titans #6      -- 45,453 (- 9.0%)

11/2008: Titans #7      -- 41,507 (- 8.7%)

----------------

6 months: -27.6%

1 year  : -16.5%
48 - TEEN TITANS

11/2003: Teen Titans #5  -- 68,078 [71,313]

11/2004: Teen Titans #18 -- 61,537 [65,142]

11/2005: Teen Titans #29 -- 69,558

11/2006: Teen Titans #40 -- 64,176

11/2006: Teen Titans #41 -- 61,714

----------------------------------

11/2007: Teen Titans #53 -- 54,387 (- 1.4%)

12/2007: Teen Titans #54 -- 53,790 (- 1.1%)

01/2008: Teen Titans #55 -- 52,376 (- 2.6%)

02/2008: Teen Titans #56 -- 50,283 (- 4.0%)

03/2008: Teen Titans #57 -- 49,109 (- 2.3%)

04/2008: Teen Titans #58 -- 47,357 (- 3.6%)

05/2008: Teen Titans #59 -- 46,306 (- 2.2%)

06/2008: Teen Titans #60 -- 45,036 (- 2.7%)

07/2008: Teen Titans #61 -- 44,666 (- 0.8%)

08/2008: Teen Titans #62 -- 43,258 (- 3.2%)

09/2008: Teen Titans #63 -- 41,790 (- 3.4%)

10/2008: Teen Titans #64 -- 39,695 (- 5.0%)

11/2008: Teen Titans #65 -- 37,880 (- 4.6%)

----------------

6 months: -18.2%

1 year  : -30.4%

2 years : -39.8%

5 years : -44.4%

Both Titans and Teen Titans keep losing readers by the truckload. DC clearly shot themselves in the foot by retooling Titans three months into its run – whatever they did to the book, it seems to have caused the numbers of a commercial hit to go into a tailspin.

—–

56 - SUPERMAN: NEW KRYPTON SPECIALS

10/2008: Jimmy Olsen #1 -- 31,993

10/2008: New Krypton #1 -- 53,582 [56,343]

11/2008: Guardian #1    -- 34,674

Now, this is very odd.

Given that all these specials are official parts of the “New Krypton” storyline that’s running through Superman, Action Comics and Supergirl, I wouldn’t have expected a difference of 20,000 units between them. Evidently, retailers largely considered the Jimmy Olsen and Guardian one-shots – both of which are by the regular writer of Superman – to be less than essential to the crossover.

Unless that was a miscalculation, this suggests that the target audience has become much more selective about which spin-off books they’re spending money on.

Like the other parts of “New Krypton,” all three specials were promoted with 1-for-10 variant-cover editions.

—–

58 - WONDER WOMAN

11/2001: Wonder Woman #176 --  30,865*

11/2002: Wonder Woman #187 --  24,013*

11/2003: Wonder Woman #198 --  28,977

11/2004: Wonder Woman #210 --  25,699

11/2005: Wonder Woman #223 --  49,332

11/2006: Wonder Woman #3   --  76,998

-------------------------------------

11/2007: Wonder Woman #14  --  53,090 (+ 9.7%)

12/2007: Wonder Woman #15  --  44,628 (-15.9%)

01/2008: Wonder Woman #16  --  42,897 (- 3.9%)

02/2008: Wonder Woman #17  --  41,948 (- 2.2%)

03/2008: Wonder Woman #18  --  40,771 (- 2.8%)

04/2008: Wonder Woman #19  --  39,489 (- 3.1%)

05/2008: Wonder Woman #20  --  38,116 (- 3.5%)

06/2008: Wonder Woman #21  --  37,086 (- 2.7%)

07/2008: Wonder Woman #22  --  36,514 (- 1.5%)

08/2008: Wonder Woman #23  --  35,562 (- 2.6%)

09/2008: Wonder Woman #24  --  34,583 (- 2.8%)

10/2008: Wonder Woman #25  --  33,583 (- 2.9%)

11/2008: Wonder Woman #26  --  33,277 (- 0.9%)

----------------

6 months: -12.7%

1 year  : -37.3%

2 years : -56.8%

5 years : +14.8%

The dreaded “Manazon” storyline (really, that’s what they’re calling it; they even use the term in the solicitations) provokes a collective shrug, to nobody’s surprise.

—–

59 - SANDMAN: DREAM HUNTERS (Vertigo)

11/2008: Dream Hunters #1 of 4 -- 32,638

Well, this is the usual sales level for Vertigo projects which are either by creators of a certain renown or part of a successful franchise (meaning: Sandman or Fables), so: no great surprise. In this case, it’s P. Craig Russell adapting a ten-year-old Neil Gaiman short story.

The book is being supported with a 1-for-25 variant-cover edition for each of the four issues.

——

65 - ROBIN

11/2001: Robin #96  -- 26,911*

11/2002: Robin #108 -- 24,356*

11/2003: Robin #120 -- 22,067

11/2004: Robin #132 -- 35,927

11/2005: Robin #144 -- 32,314

11/2006: Robin #156 -- 31,682

-----------------------------

11/2007: Robin #168 -- 50,672 (+105.8%) [57,442]

12/2007: Robin #169 -- 48,665 (-  4.0%) [51,441]

01/2008: Robin #170 -- 30,048 (- 38.3%)

02/2008: Robin #171 -- 27,781 (-  7.6%)

03/2008: Robin #172 -- 26,912 (-  3.1%)

04/2008: Robin #173 -- 26,357 (-  2.1%)

05/2008: Robin #174 -- 26,209 (-  0.6%)

06/2008: --

07/2008: Robin #175 -- 53,880 (+105.6%)

08/2008: Robin #176 -- 54,912 (+  1.9%)

08/2008: Robin #177 -- 31,346 (- 42.9%)

09/2008: Robin #178 -- 32,234 (+  2.8%)

10/2008: Robin #179 -- 30,081 (-  6.7%)

11/2008: Robin #180 -- 28,399 (-  5.6%)

-----------------

6 months: +  8.4%

1 year  : - 44.0%

2 years : - 10.4%

5 years : + 28.7%

Robin is still doing slightly better than prior to its “Batman RIP” tie-in arc.

—–

67 - BOOSTER GOLD

11/2007: Booster Gold #4  -- 37,683 (- 4.3%)

12/2007: Booster Gold #5  -- 38,228 (+ 1.5%)

01/2008: Booster Gold #6  -- 36,292 (- 5.1%)

02/2008: Booster Gold #0  -- 37,808 (+ 4.2%)

03/2008: Booster Gold #7  -- 36,140 (- 4.4%)

04/2008: Booster Gold #8  -- 35,982 (- 0.4%)

05/2008: Booster Gold #9  -- 35,030 (- 2.7%)

06/2008: Booster Gold #10 -- 34,435 (- 1.7%)

07/2008: BGold #1,000,000 -- 34,431 (- 0.0%)

08/2008: Booster Gold #11 -- 32,900 (- 4.5%)

09/2008: Booster Gold #12 -- 32,049 (- 2.6%)

10/2008: Booster Gold #13 -- 29,914 (- 6.7%)

11/2008: Booster Gold #14 -- 28,260 (- 5.5%)

----------------

6 months: -19.3%

1 year  : -25.0%

The four fill-in issues have cost Booster Gold about 6,000 units – about twice as many as the book lost in the eight preceding months.

—–

69 - TERROR TITANS

10/2008: Terror Titans #1 of 6 -- 33,001

11/2008: Terror Titans #2 of 6 -- 27,023 (-18.1%)

That’s a steep second-issue drop for a limited series.

Amazingly, this spin-off got a spin-off of its own in November. DC’s current strategy to get the flagging Teen Titans franchise back on their feet seems to be aggressive expansion. I’m somewhat skeptical, personally.

—–

70 - THE FLASH

11/2001: Flash #180     --  26,708*

11/2002: Flash #192     --  28,805*

11/2003: Flash #204     --  35,423

11/2004: Flash #216     --  43,618 [49,350]

11/2005: Flash #228     --  45,861

11/2006: Flash: FMA #6  --  56,789

----------------------------------

11/2007: Flash #234     --  46,435 (-  9.2%)

12/2007: Flash #235     --  43,788 (-  5.7%)

01/2008: Flash #236     --  41,464 (-  5.3%)

02/2008: Flash #237     --  37,719 (-  9.0%)

03/2008: Flash #238     --  35,606 (-  5.6%)

04/2008: Flash #239     --  33,741 (-  5.2%)

05/2008: Flash #240     --  31,944 (-  5.3%)

06/2008: Flash #241     --  30,810 (-  3.6%)

07/2008: Flash #242     --  30,325 (-  1.6%)

08/2008: Flash #243     --  29,647 (-  2.2%)

09/2008: Flash #244     --  29,180 (-  1.6%)

10/2008: Flash #245     --  28,085 (-  3.8%)

11/2008: Flash #246     --  27,746 (-  1.2%)

----------------

6 months: -13.1%

1 year  : -40.3%

2 years : -51.1%

5 years : -21.7%

The book is slowly finding its level again, it seems. It ended in December, in order to set the stage for next year’s revamp.

—–

71 - THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD

11/2007: The Brave and the Bold #8  -- 45,629 (- 6.3%)

12/2007: The Brave and the Bold #9  -- 43,475 (- 4.7%)

01/2008: --

02/2008: The Brave and the Bold #10 -- 39,124 (-10.0%)

03/2008: The Brave and the Bold #11 -- 37,751 (- 3.5%)

04/2008: The Brave and the Bold #12 -- 37,739 (- 0.0%)

05/2008: The Brave and the Bold #13 -- 35,814 (- 5.1%)

06/2008: The Brave and the Bold #14 -- 34,361 (- 4.1%)

07/2008: The Brave and the Bold #15 -- 32,688 (- 4.9%)

08/2008: The Brave and the Bold #16 -- 31,522 (- 3.6%)

09/2008: The Brave and the Bold #17 -- 29,857 (- 5.3%)

10/2008: The Brave and the Bold #18 -- 28,199 (- 5.5%)

11/2008: The Brave and the Bold #19 -- 26,407 (- 6.4%)

----------------

6 months: -26.3%

1 year  : -42.1%

The Brave and the Bold is missing from the publisher’s March previews, which is when new writer J. Michael Straczynski’s first issue would have been expected.

Could DC possibly be reconsidering their puzzling decison to saddle their biggest new talent in years with a complete commercial bomb that looks like it might have hit cancellation level by the time he gets there?

—–

72 - SECRET SIX

05/2006: Secret Six #1 of 6 -- 54,961 [57,425]

07/2006: Secret Six #2 of 6 -- 47,346

08/2006: Secret Six #3 of 6 -- 44,507

09/2006: Secret Six #4 of 6 -- 40,782

10/2006: Secret Six #5 of 6 -- 36,628

12/2006: Secret Six #6 of 6 -- 35,513

-------------------------------------

09/2008: Secret Six #1      -- 31,673 (-10.8%)

10/2008: Secret Six #2      -- 27,846 (-12.1%)

11/2008: Secret Six #3      -- 26,053 (- 6.4%)

----------------

2 years :  n.a.

This is a relatively smooth drop-off.

But again, there’s nothing to suggest that anything was grossly wrong with the reported sales for Secret Six #1, as suggested by writer Gail Simone two months back. If that were the case, those missing copies would usually show up on the chart in a subsequent month, and the sales for issues #2 and #3 would have been much higher.

Unless the reported sales indexes for all three issues are completely wrong, which, I guess, is not impossible, but highly unlikely, it looks like Secret Six is off to a less-than-impressive start, its best hope right now being to very quickly find its level somewhere above 25K.

Still, if there’s a piece of the puzzle that I’m missing here, I’d love to hear about it.

—–

73 - GREEN ARROW/BLACK CANARY

11/2001: Green Arrow #10  -- 80,758*

11/2002: Green Arrow #19  -- 54,767*

11/2003: Green Arrow #32  -- 38,385

11/2004: Green Arrow #44  -- 32,159

11/2005: Green Arrow #56  -- 32,670

11/2006: Green Arrow #68  -- 32,135

-----------------------------------

11/2007: Arrow/Canary #2  -- 42,827 (-17.9%)

12/2007: Arrow/Canary #3  -- 40,321 (- 5.9%)

01/2008: Arrow/Canary #4  -- 35,039 (-13.1%)

02/2008: Arrow/Canary #5  -- 36,662 (+ 4.6%)

03/2008: Arrow/Canary #6  -- 32,621 (-11.0%)

04/2008: Arrow/Canary #7  -- 32,033 (- 1.8%) 

05/2008: Arrow/Canary #8  -- 30,864 (- 3.7%)

06/2008: Arrow/Canary #9  -- 30,330 (- 1.7%)

07/2008: Arrow/Canary #10 -- 29,604 (- 2.4%)

08/2008: Arrow/Canary #11 -- 28,694 (- 3.1%)

09/2008: Arrow/Canary #12 -- 27,896 (- 2.8%)

10/2008: Arrow/Canary #13 -- 26,890 (- 3.6%)

11/2008: Arrow/Canary #14 -- 25,599 (- 4.8%)

----------------

6 months: -17.1%

1 year  : -40.2%

2 years : -20.3%

5 years : -33.3%

The decline is accelerating.

—–

83/96 - SUPERMAN/SUPERGIRL: MAELSTROM

11/2008: Maelstrom #1 of 5 -- 24,041

11/2008: Maelstrom #2 of 5 -- 21,652 (-9.9%)

Another miniseries for the completists. The numbers are as good as you’d expect for this sort of thing.

—–

90 - FABLES (Vertigo)

11/2002: Fables #7  -- 21,180*

11/2003: Fables #19 -- 25,948

11/2004: Fables #31 -- 25,061

11/2005: Fables #43 -- 24,659

11/2006: Fables #55 -- 25,635

-----------------------------

11/2007: Fables #67 -- 24,841 (-0.7%)

12/2007: Fables #68 -- 24,574 (-1.1%)

01/2008: --

02/2008: Fables #69 -- 24,337 (-1.0%)

02/2008: Fables #70 -- 23,975 (-1.5%)

03/2008: Fables #71 -- 24,006 (+0.1%)

04/2008: Fables #72 -- 23,853 (-0.6%)

05/2008: Fables #73 -- 23,785 (-0.3%)

06/2008: --

07/2008: Fables #74 -- 24,166 (+1.6%)

06/2008: --

09/2008: Fables #75 -- 25,266 (+4.6%)

09/2008: Fables #76 -- 23,914 (-5.4%)

10/2008: Fables #77 -- 23,761 (-0.6%)

11/2008: Fables #78 -- 23,345 (-1.8%)

----------------

6 months: - 1.9%

1 year  : - 6.0%

2 years : -12.4%

5 years : -10.0%

Fables continues a very slow decline.

First-month direct-market sales of the series’ paperback collections remain the most successful by far for Vertigo, meanwhile. Fables Vol. 11: The Good Prince is leading November’s Graphic Novel chart with an estimated 12,791 units. That’s a thousand copies more than Vertigo’s current average for periodicals.

A hardcover collection of James Jean’s cover illustrations, sold for a princely $ 39.99, also appeared on the November chart, with estimated first-month sales of 3,456. Which, again, is a better number than the paperback collections of most Vertigo titles can manage.

—–

92 - THE LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES

11/2001: Legion #2  -- 24,364*

11/2002: Legion #14 -- 23,880*

11/2003: Legion #26 -- 26,635

11/2003: Legion #27 -- 25,667

11/2004: --

11/2005: LoSH #12   -- 33,541

11/2006: SLoSH #24  -- 33,985

-----------------------------

11/2007: SLoSH #36  -- 26,814 (- 2.0%)

12/2007: LoSH #37   -- 45,803 (+70.8%)

01/2008: LoSH #38   -- 33,045 (-27.9%)

02/2008: LoSH #39   -- 31,123 (- 5.8%)

03/2008: LoSH #40   -- 30,377 (- 2.4%)

04/2008: LoSH #41   -- 28,939 (- 4.7%)

05/2008: LoSH #42   -- 27,940 (- 3.5%)

06/2008: --

07/2008: LoSH #43   -- 27,531 (- 1.5%)

07/2008: LoSH #44   -- 29,954 (+ 8.8%)

08/2008: LoSH #45   -- 25,783 (-13.9%)

09/2008: LoSH #46   -- 24,959 (- 3.2%)

10/2008: LoSH #47   -- 23,751 (- 4.8%)

11/2008: LoSH #48   -- 22,917 (- 3.5%)

----------------

6 months: -18.0%

1 year  : -14.5%

2 years : -32.6%

5 years : -12.4%

Cancelled with issue #50 to make room for a potentially more viable take on the property.

—–

93 - BATMAN CONFIDENTIAL

11/2007: Batman Confidential #11 -- 27,397 (- 4.6%)

12/2007: --

01/2008: --

02/2008: Batman Confidential #12 -- 27,208 (- 0.7%)

02/2008: Batman Confidential #13 -- 25,735 (- 5.4%)

03/2008: Batman Confidential #14 -- 25,330 (- 1.6%)

03/2008: Batman Confidential #15 -- 24,283 (- 4.1%)

04/2008: Batman Confidential #16 -- 24,038 (- 1.0%)

05/2008: Batman Confidential #17 -- 25,017 (+ 4.1%)

06/2008: Batman Confidential #18 -- 24,881 (- 0.5%)

07/2008: Batman Confidential #19 -- 25,037 (+ 0.6%)

08/2008: Batman Confidential #20 -- 24,654 (- 1.5%)

09/2008: Batman Confidential #21 -- 24,515 (- 0.6%)

10/2008: Batman Confidential #22 -- 24,281 (- 1.0%)

11/2008: Batman Confidential #23 -- 22,909 (- 5.7%)

----------------

6 months: - 8.4%

1 year  : -16.4%

The numbers are back in decline after the conclusion of the Batwoman arc.

—–

94 - SGT. ROCK: LOST BATTALION

11/2008: Lost Battalion #1 of 6 -- 22,641

Billy Tucci does Sgt. Rock.

Which is unexpected, to say the least, in the same way that I wouldn’t quite expect, say, a Conan comic by Jim Mahfood. (Although I could certainly be interested in reading one.)

The sales seem to be pretty good for this type of book, at any rate.

—–

97 - BATGIRL

11/2001: Batgirl #22     -- 33,506*

11/2002: Batgirl #34     -- 32,160*

11/2003: Batgirl #46     -- 27,167

11/2004: Batgirl #58     -- 31,056 [32,932]

11/2005: Batgirl #70     -- 27,002

----------------------------------

07/2008: Batgirl #1 of 6 -- 34,411

08/2008: Batgirl #2 of 6 -- 27,710 (-19.5%)

09/2008: Batgirl #3 of 6 -- 24,932 (-10.0%)

10/2008: Batgirl #4 of 6 -- 23,501 (- 5.7%)

11/2008: Batgirl #5 of 6 -- 21,595 (- 8.1%)

----------------

5 years : -20.5%

Batgirl keeps sinking like a stone.

—–

99 - BIRDS OF PREY

11/2001: Birds of Prey #37  -- 23,628*

11/2002: Birds of Prey #49  -- 26,808*

11/2003: Birds of Prey #61  -- 30,768

11/2004: Birds of Prey #76  -- 31,126

11/2005: Birds of Prey #88  -- 32,823

11/2006: Birds of Prey #100 -- 34,607

-------------------------------------

11/2007: Birds of Prey #112 -- 25,117 (- 4.9%)

12/2007: Birds of Prey #113 -- 24,717 (- 1.6%)

01/2008: Birds of Prey #114 -- 24,211 (- 2.1%)

02/2008: Birds of Prey #115 -- 23,157 (- 4.4%)

03/2008: Birds of Prey #116 -- 22,627 (- 2.3%)

04/2008: Birds of Prey #117 -- 22,181 (- 2.0%)

05/2008: Birds of Prey #118 -- 21,941 (- 1.1%)

06/2008: Birds of Prey #119 -- 21,593 (- 1.6%)

07/2008: Birds of Prey #120 -- 21,572 (- 0.1%)

08/2008: Birds of Prey #121 -- 22,406 (+ 3.9%)

09/2008: Birds of Prey #122 -- 21,318 (- 4.9%)

10/2008: Birds of Prey #123 -- 21,110 (- 1.0%)

11/2008: Birds of Prey #124 -- 20,959 (- 0.7%)

----------------

6 months: - 4.5%

1 year  : -16.5%

2 years : -39.4%

5 years : -31.9%

Bottoming out, and axed with issue #127.

—–

100/108 - TERRA

11/2008: Terra #1 of 4 -- 20,950

11/2008: Terra #2 of 4 -- 18,364 (-12.3%)

The spin-off of a spin-off of a flagging franchise, with two issues per month for maximum effect. I see Teen Titans, Teen Titans everywhere, they’re tumbling out of people’s mouths left and right and out of ears and noses they tumble, tumble down and all over the floor until an assistant editor from DC Comics offices comes and sweeps them up and puts them in a miniseries.

—–

102/107 - SUPERMAN & BATMAN VS. VAMPIRES & WEREWOLVES

10/2008: SM vs. VW #1 of 6 -- 27,825

10/2008: SM vs. VW #2 of 6 -- 24,977 (-10.2%)

11/2008: SM vs. VW #3 of 6 -- 20,835 (-16.6%)

11/2008: SM vs. VW #4 of 6 -- 19,423 (- 6.8%)
110 - BATMAN: GOTHAM AFTER MIDNIGHT

05/2008: Gotham After Midnight #1  of 12 -- 29,570

06/2008: Gotham After Midnight #2  of 12 -- 24,259 (-18.0%)

07/2008: Gotham After Midnight #3  of 12 -- 22,663 (- 6.6%)

08/2008: Gotham After Midnight #4  of 12 -- 20,863 (- 7.9%)

09/2008: Gotham After Midnight #5  of 12 -- 19,747 (- 5.4%)

10/2008: Gotham After Midnight #6  of 12 -- 18,980 (- 3.9%)

11/2008: Gotham After Midnight #7  of 12 -- 17,802 (- 6.2%)

----------------

6 months: -39.8%
112 - TANGENT: SUPERMAN'S REIGN

03/2008: Tangent #1  of 12 -- 32,378

04/2008: Tangent #2  of 12 -- 25,652 (-20.8%)

05/2008: Tangent #3  of 12 -- 22,858 (-14.2%)

06/2008: Tangent #4  of 12 -- 21,701 (- 5.1%)

07/2008: Tangent #5  of 12 -- 21,061 (- 3.0%)

08/2008: Tangent #6  of 12 -- 20,314 (- 3.6%)

09/2008: Tangent #7  of 12 -- 19,269 (- 5.1%)

10/2008: Tangent #8  of 12 -- 18,273 (- 5.2%)

11/2008: Tangent #9  of 12 -- 17,523 (- 4.1%)

----------------

6 months: -23.3%
113 - RANN/THANAGAR: HOLY WAR

05/2008: Holy War #1 of 8 -- 37,179

06/2008: Holy War #2 of 8 -- 26,446 (-28.9%)

07/2008: Holy War #3 of 8 -- 23,955 (- 9.4%)

08/2008: Holy War #4 of 8 -- 21,836 (- 8.9%)

09/2008: Holy War #5 of 8 -- 20,294 (- 7.1%)

10/2008: Holy War #6 of 8 -- 18,273 (-10.0%)

11/2008: Holy War #7 of 8 -- 17,398 (- 4.8%)

----------------

6 months: -53.2%

I reckon it’s no coincidence that these titles, all of which are of little or no significance to the status quo of the DC Universe at large, are selling below 20K and within 2,000 units of each other. For this kind of book to sell, you need a line that’s a lot stronger than DC’s is right now.

—–

117 - WORLD OF WARCRAFT (WildStorm)

11/2007: World of WarCraft #1  -- 44,508          [49,271]

12/2007: World of WarCraft #2  -- 32,740 (-34.9%) [36,340]

01/2008: World of WarCraft #3  -- 31,183 (- 4.8%)

02/2008: World of WarCraft #4  -- 28,982 (- 7.1%)

03/2008: World of WarCraft #5  -- 27,159 (- 9.4%)

04/2008: World of WarCraft #6  -- 26,271 (- 3.3%)

05/2008: World of WarCraft #7  -- 24,589 (- 6.4%)

06/2008: World of WarCraft #8  -- 23,310 (- 5.2%)

07/2008: World of WarCraft #9  -- 22,203 (- 4.8%)

08/2008: World of WarCraft #10 -- 20,883 (- 6.0%)

09/2008: World of WarCraft #11 -- 19,331 (- 7.4%)

10/2008: World of WarCraft #12 -- 18,200 (- 5.9%)

11/2008: World of WarCraft #13 -- 17,017 (- 6.5%)

----------------

6 months: -30.8%

1 year  : -61.8%

As I’ve noted before, World of WarCraft collections seem to be doing reasonably well, if their first-month direct-market sales are any indication. And in any case, the book still sells a good 10,000 units above the level where WildStorm tend to pull the plug on licensed titles.

Now, with that said, this is still an extremely unhealthy decline, of course. If it keeps losing more than a thousand units on average per month, as it has from the word go, then it’s literally going to run out of readers pretty soon.

As usual, there was a 50/50 variant-cover edition. The spin-off World of WarCraft: Ashbringer missed its November shipping date, meanwhile.

—–

122 - THE X-FILES (WildStorm)

07/2008: Special #0      -- 23,805

08/2008: --

09/2008: --

10/2008: --

11/2008: X-Files #1 of 6 -- 16,042 (-32.6%)

This is still a good number by WildStorm standards, but it certainly doesn’t seem like people were impressed with the special a few months back. If you believe DC’s website, the series has evidently been extended to seven issues.

There was a 1-for-10 variant-cover edition to help sales.

—–

125 - HOUSE OF MYSTERY (Vertigo)

05/2008: House of Mystery #1  -- 27,492

06/2008: House of Mystery #2  -- 19,485 (-29.1%)

07/2008: House of Mystery #3  -- 18,407 (- 5.5%)

08/2008: House of Mystery #4  -- 17,569 (- 4.6%)

09/2008: House of Mystery #5  -- 16,721 (- 4.8%)

10/2008: House of Mystery #6  -- 15,934 (- 4.7%)

11/2008: House of Mystery #7  -- 15,120 (- 5.1%)

----------------

6 months: -45.0%
126 - JACK OF FABLES (Vertigo)

11/2006: Jack of Fables #5  -- 21,191

-------------------------------------

11/2007: Jack of Fables #17 -- 17,456 (- 1.6%)

12/2007: Jack of Fables #18 -- 17,242 (- 1.2%)

01/2008: Jack of Fables #19 -- 16,886 (- 2.1%)

02/2008: Jack of Fables #20 -- 16,650 (- 1.4%)

03/2008: Jack of Fables #21 -- 16,597 (- 0.3%)

04/2008: Jack of Fables #22 -- 16,305 (- 1.8%)

05/2008: --

06/2008: Jack of Fables #23 -- 16,144 (- 1.0%)

07/2008: --

08/2008: Jack of Fables #24 -- 15,953 (- 1.2%)

08/2008: Jack of Fables #25 -- 15,642 (- 2.0%)

09/2008: Jack of Fables #26 -- 15,471 (- 1.1%)

10/2008: Jack of Fables #27 -- 15,092 (- 2.5%)

11/2008: Jack of Fables #28 -- 14,528 (- 3.7%)

----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  : -15.3%

2 years : -31.4%
129 - EX MACHINA (WildStorm)

11/2004: Ex Machina #6  -- 23,531

11/2005: Ex Machina #16 -- 21,250

11/2006: Ex Machina #24 -- 19,813

---------------------------------

11/2007: Ex Machina #32 -- 16,328 (- 2.7%)

12/2007: Ex Machina #33 -- 16,067 (- 1.6%)

01/2008: --

02/2008: Ex Machina #34 -- 15,579 (- 3.0%)

03/2008: Ex Machina #35 -- 15,500 (- 0.5%)

04/2008: Ex Machina #36 -- 15,188 (- 2.0%)

05/2008: --

06/2008: Ex Machina #37 -- 14,921 (- 1.8%)

07/2008: --

08/2008: --

09/2008: Ex Machina #38 -- 14,973 (+ 0.4%)

10/2008: --

11/2008: Ex Machina #39 -- 14,194 (- 5.2%)

----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  : -13.1%

2 years : -28.4%

These are some of Vertigo and WildStorm’s better and more consistent periodical sellers, although none of them have been doing great lately.

—–

134 - REIGN IN HELL

07/2008: Reign in Hell #1 of 8 -- 29,003

08/2008: Reign in Hell #2 of 8 -- 20,459 (-29.5%)

09/2008: Reign in Hell #3 of 8 -- 17,964 (-12.2%)

10/2008: Reign in Hell #4 of 8 -- 15,123 (-15.8%)

11/2008: Reign in Hell #5 of 8 -- 13,565 (-10.3%)

Heading downstairs.

—–

135 - GEARS OF WAR (WildStorm)

10/2008: GoW #1  -- 19,718

11/2008: GoW #2  -- 12,964 (-34.3%)
136 - TOP TEN: SEASON TWO (WildStorm)

10/2008: Season Two #1 of 4 -- 15,841

11/2008: Season Two #2 of 4 -- 12,710 (-19.8%)

Two more WildStorm books with steep second-issue drops. In the case of Gears of War, to be fair, the drop-off is partly because there was a variant-cover edition for the first issue. And, of course, these books could be doing much, much worse overall, if you have a glance further down the chart, so I doubt anyone’s losing sleep over them.

—–

137 - JONAH HEX

11/2005: Jonah Hex #1  -- 33,771

11/2006: Jonah Hex #13 -- 18,747

--------------------------------

11/2007: Jonah Hex #25 -- 14,577 (- 1.2%)

12/2007: Jonah Hex #26 -- 14,088 (- 3.5%)

01/2008: Jonah Hex #27 -- 13,881 (- 1.5%)

02/2008: Jonah Hex #28 -- 13,614 (- 1.9%)

03/2008: Jonah Hex #29 -- 13,439 (- 1.3%)

04/2008: Jonah Hex #30 -- 13,253 (- 1.4%)

05/2008: Jonah Hex #31 -- 13,140 (- 0.9%)

06/2008: Jonah Hex #32 -- 12,969 (- 1.3%)

07/2008: Jonah Hex #33 -- 14,281 (+10.1%)

08/2008: Jonah Hex #34 -- 12,969 (- 9.2%)

09/2008: Jonah Hex #35 -- 13,231 (+ 2.0%)

10/2008: Jonah Hex #36 -- 12,629 (- 4.6%)

11/2008: Jonah Hex #37 -- 12,537 (- 0.7%)

----------------

6 months: - 4.6%

1 year  : -14.0%

2 years : -33.1%

Back in its usual slow decline.

—–

138 - THE AUTHORITY (WildStorm)

11/2001: The Authority v1 #28 -- 40,804*

11/2003: The Authority v2 #7  -- 25,657

11/2004: Revolution #2  of 12 -- 23,282

11/2006: --

---------------------------------------

11/2007: Prime #2 of 6        -- 17,717 (-19.4%)

12/2007: Prime #3 of 6        -- 16,623 (- 6.2%)

01/2008: Prime #4 of 6        -- 15,058 (- 9.4%)

02/2008: Prime #5 of 6        -- 14,099 (- 6.4%)

03/2008: Prime #6 of 6        -- 13,369 (- 5.2%)

04/2008: --

05/2008: --

06/2008: --

07/2008: --

08/2008: The Authority v4 #1  -- 15,735 (+17.7%)

09/2008: The Authority v4 #2  -- 14,324 (- 9.0%)

10/2008: The Authority v4 #3  -- 13,408 (- 6.4%)

11/2008: The Authority v4 #4  -- 12,450 (- 7.2%)

----------------

1 year  : -29.7%

2 years :  n.a.

5 years : -51.5%

It looks like the smooth second-issue drop was a flash in the pan. At this rate, I doubt the WildStorm Universe line will be around past 2009. Plainly, nobody cares anymore, and even the people who still did three months ago keep quitting in droves.

—–

141 - MADAME XANADU (Vertigo)

06/2008: Madame Xanadu #1  -- 22,073

07/2008: Madame Xanadu #2  -- 16,655 (-24.6%)

08/2008: Madame Xanadu #3  -- 13,052 (- 3.3%)

09/2008: Madame Xanadu #4  -- 12,329 (- 5.5%)

10/2008: Madame Xanadu #5  -- 11,392 (- 7.6%)

11/2008: Madame Xanadu #6  -- 12,340 (+ 8.3%)

There was a Frank-Quitely-drawn variant-cover edition for the November issue, hence the slight sales increase.

—–

143 - AMBUSH BUG: YEAR NONE

07/2008: Ambush Bug: Year None #1 of 6 -- 19,088

08/2008: Ambush Bug: Year None #2 of 6 -- 14,627 (-23.4%)

09/2008: Ambush Bug: Year None #3 of 6 -- 13,477 (- 7.8%)

10/2008: --

11/2008: Ambush Bug: Year None #4 of 6 -- 11,972 (-11.2%)

This one’s spiralling off the radar. I was surprised it sold so well to begin with.

—–

144 - BLUE BEETLE

11/2006: Blue Beetle #8  -- 25,861

11/2006: Blue Beetle #9  -- 23,785

----------------------------------

11/2007: Blue Beetle #21 -- 15,645 (-43.3%)

12/2007: Blue Beetle #22 -- 15,256 (- 2.5%)

01/2008: Blue Beetle #23 -- 14,961 (- 1.9%)

02/2008: Blue Beetle #24 -- 14,378 (- 3.9%)

03/2008: Blue Beetle #25 -- 14,304 (- 0.5%)

04/2008: Blue Beetle #26 -- 14,285 (- 0.1%)

05/2008: Blue Beetle #27 -- 13,802 (- 3.4%)

06/2008: -- 

07/2008: Blue Beetle #28 -- 13,620 (- 1.3%)

07/2008: Blue Beetle #29 -- 13,310 (- 2.3%)

08/2008: Blue Beetle #30 -- 12,669 (- 4.8%)

09/2008: Blue Beetle #31 -- 12,302 (- 2.9%)

10/2008: Blue Beetle #32 -- 11,828 (- 3.9%)

11/2008: Blue Beetle #33 -- 11,452 (- 3.2%)

----------------

6 months: -17.0%

1 year  : -26.8%

2 years : -53.9%

Cancelled with issue #36. Amazingly, people seem upset by that. What happened to proper concerns such as the rain forest, the economic crisis, Kramers Ergot #7, or Oxford commas?

—–

145 - HELLBLAZER (Vertigo)

11/2001: Hellblazer #168 -- 18,217*

11/2002: Hellblazer #178 -- 17,977*

11/2003: Hellblazer #190 -- 15,602

11/2004: Hellblazer #202 -- 15,254

11/2005: Hellblazer #214 -- 14,766

11/2006: Hellblazer #226 -- 13,388

----------------------------------

11/2007: Hellblazer #238 -- 12,536 (-1.3%)

12/2007: Hellblazer #239 -- 12,344 (-1.5%)

01/2008: Hellblazer #240 -- 12,213 (-1.1%)

02/2008: Hellblazer #241 -- 11,998 (-1.8%)

03/2008: Hellblazer #242 -- 11,916 (-0.7%)

04/2008: Hellblazer #243 -- 11,958 (+0.4%)

05/2008: Hellblazer #244 -- 11,826 (-1.1%)

06/2008: Hellblazer #245 -- 11,897 (+0.6%)

07/2008: Hellblazer #246 -- 12,088 (+1.6%)

08/2008: --

09/2008: Hellblazer #247 -- 11,851 (-2.0%)

10/2008: Hellblazer #248 -- 11,600 (-2.1%)

11/2008: Hellblazer #249 -- 11,445 (-1.3%)

----------------

6 months: - 3.2%

1 year  : - 8.7%

2 years : -14.5%

5 years : -26.6%

Standard Attrition. (Copyright 2008.)

—–

146 - WILDCATS: WORLD'S END (WildStorm)

11/2002: Version 3.0 #4  -- 17,625*

11/2003: Version 3.0 #16 -- 14,121

11/2005: Nemesis #3 of 9 -- 16,154

11/2006: --

----------------------------------

07/2008: World's End #1  -- 16,895 (-79.5%)

08/2008: World's End #2  -- 13,311 (-21.2%)

09/2008: World's End #3  -- 13,559 (+ 1.9%)

10/2008: World's End #4  -- 12,431 (- 8.3%)

11/2008: World's End #5  -- 11,280 (- 9.3%)

----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  :  n.a.

2 years :  n.a.

5 years : -20.1%

Tick. Tock. Tick. Tock. Tick. Tock.

—–

148 - VIXEN: RETURN OF THE LION

10/2008: Vixen #1 of 5 -- 16,246

11/2008: Vixen #2 of 5 -- 11,206 (-31.0%)

That’s a terrible second-issue drop.

—–

149 - MANHUNTER

11/2004: Manhunter #4  -- 15,808

11/2005: Manhunter #16 -- 14,257

--------------------------------

12/2006: Manhunter #26 -- 23,767 (+56.6%)

01/2007: Manhunter #27 -- 17,842 (-24.9%)

02/2007: Manhunter #28 -- 17,182 (- 3.4%)

03/2007: Manhunter #29 -- 17,234 (+ 0.3%)

04/2007: Manhunter #30 -- 16,373 (- 5.0%)

--------------------------------

06/2008: Manhunter #31 -- 15,694 (- 4.2%)

07/2008: Manhunter #32 -- 13,740 (-12.5%)

08/2008: Manhunter #33 -- 12,700 (- 7.6%)

09/2008: Manhunter #34 -- 12,234 (- 3.7%)

10/2008: Manhunter #35 -- 11,652 (- 4.8%)

11/2008: Manhunter #36 -- 11,017 (- 5.5%)

----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  :  n.a.

2 years :  n.a.

Axed with issue #38.

—–

150 - 100 BULLETS (Vertigo)

11/2001: 100 Bullets #30 -- 17,233*

11/2002: 100 Bullets #40 -- 17,121*

11/2003: --

11/2004: 100 Bullets #55 -- 15,929

11/2005: 100 Bullets #66 -- 14,425

11/2006: 100 Bullets #78 -- 12,954

----------------------------------

11/2007: 100 Bullets #86 -- 11,599 (- 2.4%)

12/2007: --

01/2008: 100 Bullets #87 -- 11,244 (- 3.1%)

02/2008: 100 Bullets #88 -- 11,077 (- 1.5%)

03/2008: 100 Bullets #89 -- 10,878 (- 1.8%)

04/2008: 100 Bullets #90 -- 10,856 (- 0.2%)

05/2008: 100 Bullets #91 -- 10,736 (- 1.1%)

06/2008: 100 Bullets #92 -- 10,797 (+ 0.6%)

07/2008: 100 Bullets #93 -- 10,796 (- 0.0%)

08/2008: 100 Bullets #94 -- 10,721 (- 0.7%)

09/2008: 100 Bullets #95 -- 10,669 (- 0.5%)

10/2008: 100 Bullets #96 -- 10,654 (- 0.1%)

11/2008: 100 Bullets #97 -- 10,580 (- 0.7%)

----------------

6 months: - 1.5%

1 year  : - 8.8%

2 years : -18.3%

5 years :   n.a.

100 Bullets remains remarkably stable.

—–

151 - UNKNOWN SOLDIER (Vertigo)

10/2008: Unknown Soldier #1  -- 16,038

11/2008: Unknown Soldier #2  -- 10,553 (-34.2%)

The first issue had a 1-for-10 variant-cover edition to boost the numbers, so the second-issue drop isn’t entirely as bad as it looks.

—–

152 - THE SPIRIT

11/2006: Batman/The Spirit -- 35,541 [39,666]

------------------------------------

11/2007: The Spirit #11    -- 18,892 (- 5.4%)

12/2007: --

01/2008: The Spirit #12    -- 18,894 (+ 0.0%)

01/2008: The Spirit #13    -- 17,475 (- 7.5%)

02/2008: The Spirit #14    -- 17,277 (- 1.1%)

03/2008: The Spirit #15    -- 16,038 (- 7.2%)

04/2008: The Spirit #16    -- 14,697 (- 8.4%)

05/2008: The Spirit #17    -- 14,057 (- 4.4%)

06/2008: The Spirit #18    -- 13,257 (- 5.7%)

07/2008: The Spirit #19    -- 12,709 (- 4.1%)

08/2008: The Spirit #20    -- 12,358 (- 2.8%)

09/2008: The Spirit #21    -- 11,551 (- 6.5%)

10/2008: The Spirit #22    -- 10,997 (- 4.8%)

11/2008: The Spirit #23    -- 10,372 (- 5.7%)

----------------

6 months: -26.2%

1 year  : -45.1%

2 years : -70.8%

There’s no end in sight to the break-neck decline.

The Spirit Special #1, an issue reprinting three Will Eisner strips meant to capitalize on the new Hollywood film, charts with 4,811 units. The fact that three Eisner strips that have probably been reprinted a dozen times already manage to pull in almost half the sales of the monthly book with new stories by people other than Eisner should probably tell them something.

—–

155 - NORTHLANDERS (Vertigo)

12/2007: Northlanders #1  -- 19,805

01/2008: Northlanders #2  -- 15,945 (-19.5%)

02/2008: Northlanders #3  -- 14,699 (- 7.8%)

03/2008: Northlanders #4  -- 12,851 (-12.6%)

04/2008: Northlanders #5  -- 12,278 (- 4.5%)

05/2008: Northlanders #6  -- 12,009 (- 2.2%)

06/2008: --

07/2008: Northlanders #7  -- 11,918 (- 0.8%)

07/2008: Northlanders #8  -- 11,477 (- 3.7%)

08/2008: Northlanders #9  -- 11,063 (- 3.6%)

09/2008: Northlanders #10 -- 10,738 (- 2.9%)

10/2008: Northlanders #11 -- 10,353 (- 3.6%)

11/2008: Northlanders #12 -- 10,048 (- 3.0%)

----------------

6 months: -16.3%

Continuing a steady decline.

—–

160 - SIMON DARK

11/2007: Simon Dark #2  -- 18,492 (-23.8%)

12/2007: Simon Dark #3  -- 17,391 (- 6.0%)

01/2008: Simon Dark #4  -- 16,242 (- 6.6%)

02/2008: Simon Dark #5  -- 15,360 (- 5.4%)

03/2008: Simon Dark #6  -- 14,684 (- 4.4%)

04/2008: Simon Dark #7  -- 13,936 (- 5.1%)

05/2008: Simon Dark #8  -- 13,222 (- 5.1%)

06/2008: Simon Dark #9  -- 12,514 (- 5.4%)

07/2008: Simon Dark #10 -- 12,038 (- 3.8%)

08/2008: Simon Dark #11 -- 11,529 (- 4.2%)

09/2008: Simon Dark #12 -- 10,895 (- 5.5%)

10/2008: Simon Dark #13 -- 10,404 (- 4.5%)

11/2008: Simon Dark #14 --  9,582 (- 7.9%)

----------------

6 months: -27.5%

1 year  : -48.2%

Cancelled with issue #18.

—–

163 - GEN13 (WildStorm)

11/2001: Gen13 #71 -- 18,108*

11/2002: Gen13 #3  -- 21,323*

11/2003: Gen13 #15 -- 13,143

11/2006: Gen13 #2  -- 33,494

----------------------------

11/2007: Gen13 #14 -- 14,831 (- 4.6%)

12/2007: Gen13 #15 -- 14,330 (- 3.4%)

01/2008: Gen13 #16 -- 13,618 (- 5.0%)

02/2008: Gen13 #17 -- 12,844 (- 5.7%)

03/2008: Gen13 #18 -- 12,396 (- 3.5%)

04/2008: Gen13 #19 -- 11,887 (- 4.1%)

05/2008: Gen13 #20 -- 11,429 (- 3.9%)

06/2008: --

07/2008: --

08/2008: Gen13 #21 -- 11,074 (- 3.1%)

09/2008: Gen13 #22 -- 10,533 (- 4.9%)

10/2008: Gen13 #23 -- 10,061 (- 4.5%)

11/2008: Gen13 #24 --  9,460 (- 6.0%)

----------------

6 months: -17.2%

1 year  : -36.2%

2 years : -71.8%

5 years : -28.0%

This one’s crashing and burning.

—–

165 - TINY TITANS (Johnny DC)

02/2008: Tiny Titans #1  -- 15,238

03/2008: Tiny Titans #2  -- 11,432 (-25.0%)

04/2008: Tiny Titans #3  -- 11,197 (- 2.1%)

05/2008: Tiny Titans #4  -- 10,369 (- 7.4%)

06/2008: Tiny Titans #5  -- 10,909 (+ 5.2%)

07/2008: Tiny Titans #6  -- 10,636 (- 2.5%)

08/2008: Tiny Titans #7  -- 10,234 (- 3.8%)

09/2008: Tiny Titans #8  --  9,795 (- 4.3%)

10/2008: Tiny Titans #9  --  9,521 (- 2.8%)

11/2008: Tiny Titans #10 --  9,239 (- 3.0%)

----------------

6 months: -10.9%

A Johnny DC book. See disclaimers.

—–

167 - AIR (Vertigo)

08/2008: Air #1  -- 13,868

09/2008: Air #2  -- 10,971 (-20.9%)

10/2008: Air #3  -- 10,061 (- 8.3%)

11/2008: Air #4  --  8,913 (-11.4%)

DC’s special retailer incentive for Air – guaranteeing full returnability provided a certain order quota was met – seems to have ended with issue #3. That might explain the big drop in November.

—–

169 - DMZ (Vertigo)

11/2005: DMZ #1  -- 18,705

11/2006: DMZ #13 -- 14,228

--------------------------

11/2007: DMZ #25 -- 11,277 (-2.6%)

12/2007: DMZ #26 -- 11,027 (-2.2%)

01/2008: DMZ #27 -- 10,662 (-3.3%)

02/2008: DMZ #28 -- 10,463 (-1.9%)

03/2008: DMZ #29 -- 10,266 (-1.9%)

04/2008: DMZ #30 -- 10,038 (-2.2%)

05/2008: DMZ #31 --  9,911 (-1.3%)

06/2008: DMZ #32 --  9,760 (-1.5%)

07/2008: DMZ #33 --  9,684 (-0.8%)

08/2008: DMZ #34 --  9,561 (-1.3%)

09/2008: --  

10/2008: DMZ #35 --  9,240 (-3.4%)

11/2008: DMZ #36 --  8,851 (-4.2%)

----------------

6 months: -10.7%

1 year  : -21.5%

2 years : -37.8%

Back in August, we recall, the most recent DMZ paperback collection had estimated first-month direct-market sales of 6,143. If the decline of the periodical continues at this rate, consequently, DMZ is on track to become the first Vertigo series whose monthly issues are outsold by its paperback collections, in terms of first-month direct-market numbers – provided collection sales at least remain stable, of course.

At the very least, that’s going to make it harder to justify printing and distributing monthly 22-page comics. After all, the production values of Vertigo’s titles are already cheaper than those of the DC Universe books, and digital distribution seems to be growing into a real alternative, slowly but surely. Considering that the first few titles released via DC’s Zuda Comics web platform are now headed for print, it wouldn’t surprise me at all if that became the new default approach for Vertigo two or three years down the road.

—–

178 - THE WAR THAT TIME FORGOT

05/2008: The War That Time Forgot #1  of 8  -- 18,243

06/2008: The War That Time Forgot #2  of 8  -- 13,296 (-27.1%)

07/2008: The War That Time Forgot #3  of 8  -- 11,407 (-14.2%)

08/2008: The War That Time Forgot #4  of 8  --  9,965 (-12.6%)

09/2008: The War That Time Forgot #5  of 12 --  9,153 (- 8.2%)

10/2008: The War That Time Forgot #6  of 12 --  8,243 (- 9.9%)

11/2008: The War That Time Forgot #7  of 12 --  7,700 (- 6.6%)

----------------

6 months: -57.8%

Predictably abysmal numbers for a fantasy book thrown out there to fend for itself.

—–

185 - HELLBLAZER PRESENTS CHAS: THE KNOWLEDGE (Vertigo)

07/2008: Chas #1 of 5 -- 10,465

08/2008: Chas #2 of 5 --  8,608 (-17.5%)

09/2008: Chas #3 of 5 --  7,862 (- 8.7%)

10/2008: Chas #4 of 5 --  7,380 (- 6.1%)

11/2008: Chas #5 of 5 --  7,184 (- 2.7%)

This one might stand a better chance once there’s a paperback collection.

—–

190 - SCALPED (Vertigo)

11/2007: Scalped #11 --  7,323 (- 2.8%) 

12/2007: Scalped #12 --  7,048 (- 3.8%)

01/2008: Scalped #13 --  6,993 (- 0.8%)

02/2008: Scalped #14 --  6,903 (- 1.3%)

03/2008: Scalped #15 --  7,004 (+ 1.5%)

04/2008: Scalped #16 --  7,071 (+ 1.0%)

05/2008: Scalped #17 --  6,927 (- 2.0%)

06/2008: Scalped #18 --  7,020 (+ 1.3%)

07/2008: Scalped #19 --  7,221 (+ 2.9%)

08/2008: Scalped #20 --  7,034 (- 2.6%)

09/2008: Scalped #21 --  7,029 (- 0.1%)

10/2008: Scalped #22 --  6,964 (- 0.9%)

11/2008: Scalped #23 --  6,910 (- 0.8%)

----------------

6 months: - 0.3%

1 year  : - 5.6%

Scalped keeps clinging to the 7K area.

—–

192 - STORMWATCH: PHD (WildStorm)

11/2002: Team Achilles #5    -- 17,273*

11/2003: --

11/2006: StormWatch: PHD #1  -- 29,975

--------------------------------------

08/2008: StormWatch: PHD #13 --  8,650 (-13.6%)

09/2008: StormWatch: PHD #14 --  7,883 (- 8.9%)

10/2008: StormWatch: PHD #15 --  7,411 (- 6.0%)

11/2008: StormWatch: PHD #16 --  6,824 (- 7.9%)

----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  :  n.a.

2 years : -77.2%

5 years :  n.a.

Disastrous numbers, but it’s not like that’s a great surprise, at this stage.

—–

196 - YOUNG LIARS (Vertigo)

03/2008: Young Liars #1  -- 13,177

04/2008: Young Liars #2  --  9,917 (-24.7%)

05/2008: Young Liars #3  --  8,954 (- 9.7%)

06/2008: Young Liars #4  --  8,590 (- 4.1%)

07/2008: Young Liars #5  --  8,172 (- 4.9%)

08/2008: Young Liars #6  --  7,862 (- 3.8%)

09/2008: Young Liars #7  --  7,520 (- 4.4%)

10/2008: Young Liars #8  --  7,265 (- 3.4%)

11/2008: Young Liars #9  --  6,775 (- 6.8%)

----------------

6 months: -24.3%

The first Young Liars collection came out on Christmas Eve. Unless it defies all expectations and does extraordinarily well, I doubt there’s much rope left for the book.

—–

197 - GREATEST HITS (Vertigo)

09/2008: Greatest Hits #1 of 6 -- 13,142

10/2008: Greatest Hits #2 of 6 --  8,222 (-37.4%)

11/2008: Greatest Hits #3 of 6 --  6,737 (-18.1%)

Terrible sales.

—–

212 - SUPER FRIENDS (Johnny DC)

03/2008: Super Friends #1  -- 12,554

04/2008: Super Friends #2  --  8,935 (-28.8%)

05/2008: Super Friends #3  --  8,037 (-10.1%)

06/2008: Super Friends #4  --  8,038 (+ 0.0%)

07/2008: Super Friends #5  --  7,141 (-11.2%)

08/2008: Super Friends #6  --  6,671 (- 6.6%)

09/2008: Super Friends #7  --  6,428 (- 3.6%)

10/2008: Super Friends #8  --  6,153 (- 4.3%)

11/2008: Super Friends #9  --  5,739 (- 6.7%)

----------------

6 months: -28.6%

A Johnny DC book. See disclaimers.

—–

213 - PUSH (WildStorm)

11/2008: Push #1 of 6 -- 5,706

11/2008: Push #2 of 6 -- 4,829 (-15.4%)

This prequel to an upcoming Hollywood film may be in the running for the all-time lowest-selling WildStorm debut.

—–

214 - STORMING PARADISE (WildStorm)

07/2008: Storming Paradise #1 of 6 -- 9,965

08/2008: Storming Paradise #2 of 6 -- 7,282 (-26.9%)

09/2008: Storming Paradise #3 of 6 -- 6,113 (-16.1%)

10/2008: --

11/2008: Storming Paradise #4 of 6 -- 5,566 (- 9.0%)
216 - EL DIABLO

09/2008: El Diablo #1 of 6 -- 11,510

10/2008: El Diablo #2 of 6 --  7,349 (-36.2%)

11/2008: El Diablo #3 of 6 --  5,531 (-24.7%)

A World War II fantasy and a spandex western, unloaded unto the market without promotion.

—–

219 - THE LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES IN THE 31ST CENTURY (Johnny DC)

11/2007: The LoSH in the 31st Century #8  --  6,886 (- 1.8%)

12/2007: The LoSH in the 31st Century #9  --  6,777 (- 1.6%)

01/2008: The LoSH in the 31st Century #10 --  6,674 (- 1.5%)

02/2008: The LoSH in the 31st Century #11 --  6,568 (- 1.6%)

03/2008: The LoSH in the 31st Century #12 --  6,331 (- 3.6%)

04/2008: The LoSH in the 31st Century #13 --  6,331 (  0.0%)

05/2008: The LoSH in the 31st Century #14 --  6,203 (- 2.0%)

06/2008: The LoSH in the 31st Century #15 --  6,565 (+ 5.8%)

07/2008: The LoSH in the 31st Century #16 --  6,289 (- 4.2%)

08/2008: The LoSH in the 31st Century #17 --  5,925 (- 5.8%)

09/2008: The LoSH in the 31st Century #18 --  5,765 (- 2.7%)

10/2008: The LoSH in the 31st Century #19 --  5,613 (- 2.6%)

11/2008: The LoSH in the 31st Century #20 --  5,338 (- 4.9%)

----------------

6 months: -14.0%

1 year  : -22.5%

A Johnny DC title. See disclaimers.

—–

223 - [email protected]: THE ART OF WAR (Vertigo)

11/2007: [email protected] #9  --  6,617 (- 5.6%)

12/2007: [email protected] #10 --  6,364 (- 3.8%)

01/2008: [email protected] #11 --  6,023 (- 5.4%)

02/2008: [email protected] #12 --  5,777 (- 4.1%)

03/2008: --

04/2008: --

05/2008: --

06/2008: --

07/2008: --

08/2008: AoW #1 of 6   --  6,692 (+15.8%)

09/2008: AoW #2 of 6   --  5,669 (-15.3%)

10/2008: AoW #3 of 6   --  5,311 (- 6.3%)

11/2008: AoW #4 of 6   --  5,003 (- 5.8%)

----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  : -24.4%

I trust the current miniseries will be it for [email protected], as far as periodicals are concerned.

—–

244 - SCOOBY DOO (Johnny DC)

11/2001: Scooby Doo #54  -- 5,451*

11/2002: Scooby Doo #66  -- 6,122*

11/2003: Scooby Doo #78  -- 5,788

11/2004: Scooby Doo #90  -- 5,280

11/2005: Scooby Doo #102 -- 4,587

11/2006: Scooby Doo #114 -- 4,387

---------------------------------

11/2007: Scooby Doo #126 -- 4,237 (- 3.9%)

12/2007: Scooby Doo #127 -- 4,293 (+ 1.3%)

01/2008: Scooby Doo #128 -- 4,147 (- 3.4%)

02/2008: Scooby Doo #129 -- 4,161 (+ 0.4%)

03/2008: Scooby Doo #130 -- 4,463 (+ 7.3%)

04/2008: Scooby Doo #131 -- 4,403 (- 1.3%)

05/2008: Scooby Doo #132 -- 4,309 (- 2.1%)

06/2008: Scooby Doo #133 -- 4,501 (+ 4.5%)

07/2008: Scooby Doo #134 -- 4,286 (- 4.8%)

08/2008: Scooby Doo #135 -- 4,226 (- 1.4%)

09/2008: Scooby Doo #136 -- 4,283 (+ 1.4%)

10/2008: Scooby Doo #137 -- ?

11/2008: Scooby Doo #138 -- 4,068

----------------

6 months: - 5.6%

1 year  : - 4.0%

2 years : - 7.3%

5 years : -29.7%

And another Johnny DC book. See disclaimers.

—–

248 - FERRYMAN (WildStorm)

10/2008: Ferryman #1 of 5 -- 6,392

10/2008: Ferryman #2 of 5 -- 5,093 (-20.3%) [7,666]

11/2008: Ferryman #3 of 5 -- 3,818 (-25.0%)

Terrible sales, obviously.

However, there’s something odd going on here: October’s Ferryman #2 made the chart again with 2,573 units in November, which is more than half the number of its first-month sales.

I’m sure there’s a perfectly good reason for that, but I haven’t got a clue what it is. So, as usual, if you’ve got any further insight on this, please don’t hesitate to enlighten me.

—–

286 - LOONEY TUNES (Johnny DC)

11/2001: Looney Tunes #84  -- 3,275*

11/2002: Looney Tunes #96  -- 3,346*

11/2003: Looney Tunes #108 -- 3,446

11/2004: Looney Tunes #120 -- 3,150

11/2005: Looney Tunes #132 -- 2,747

11/2006: Looney Tunes #144 -- ?

-----------------------------------

11/2007: Looney Tunes #156 -- ?

12/2007: Looney Tunes #157 -- 2,641

01/2008: Looney Tunes #158 -- 2,596 (- 1.7%)

02/2008: Looney Tunes #159 -- 2,606 (+ 0.4%)

03/2008: Looney Tunes #160 -- 2,807 (+ 7.7%)

04/2008: Looney Tunes #161 -- ? 

05/2008: Looney Tunes #162 -- ? 

06/2008: Looney Tunes #163 -- 2,793

07/2008: Looney Tunes #164 -- ? 

08/2008: Looney Tunes #165 -- 2,662

09/2008: Looney Tunes #166 -- ? 

10/2008: Looney Tunes #167 -- ? 

11/2008: Looney Tunes #168 -- 2,610

----------------

6 months:  ?

1 year  :  ?

2 years :  ?

5 years : -24.3%

Johnny DC. See disclaimers.

REORDERS:

249: 3,811 -- Final Crisis: Rage of the Red Lanterns #1

283: 2,761 -- Superman: New Krypton Special #1

288: 2,601 -- Superman #681

290: 2,573 -- Ferryman #2
6-MONTH COMPARISONS

+ 73.6%: Nightwing

+ 50.8%: Supergirl

+ 32.7%: Detective Comics

+ 25.2%: Action Comics

+ 22.4%: Batsiders

+ 21.5%: Superman

+  8.4%: Robin

+  2.6%: Batman

-  0.3%: Scalped

-  0.9%: JSA

-  1.5%: 100 Bullets

-  1.9%: Fables

-  3.2%: Hellblazer

-  4.5%: Birds of Prey

-  4.6%: Jonah Hex

-  5.6%: Scooby-Doo

-  7.1%: GL Corps

-  8.4%: Batman Confidential

- 10.7%: DMZ

- 10.9%: Tiny Titans

- 12.7%: Wonder Woman

- 13.1%: Flash

- 14.0%: LoSH31

- 16.3%: Northlanders

- 17.0%: Blue Beetle

- 17.1%: Arrow/Canary

- 17.2%: Gen13

- 18.0%: LoSH

- 18.2%: Teen Titans

- 19.3%: Booster Gold

- 23.3%: Tangent

- 24.3%: Young Liars

- 26.2%: Spirit

- 26.3%: Brave & Bold

- 27.5%: Simon Dark

- 27.6%: Titans

- 28.6%: Super Friends

- 30.8%: WoW

- 39.8%: Gotham After Midnight

- 45.0%: House of Mystery

- 53.2%: Rann/Thanagar

- 57.8%: War That Time Forgot

—–

1-YEAR COMPARISONS

+ 34.4%: Batman

+ 14.5%: Superman

+  9.1%: Nightwing

+  7.3%: Action Comics

+  6.5%: Detective Comics

+  0.1%: Supergirl

-  4.0%: Scooby-Doo

-  5.6%: Scalped

-  6.0%: Fables

-  8.7%: Hellblazer

-  8.8%: 100 Bullets

- 13.1%: Ex Machina

- 14.0%: Jonah Hex

- 14.5%: LoSH

- 15.3%: Jack of Fables

- 16.4%: Batman Confidential

- 16.5%: Birds of Prey

- 16.5%: Titans

- 21.5%: DMZ

- 21.9%: GL Corps

- 22.5%: LoSH31

- 24.4%: [email protected]

- 25.0%: Booster Gold

- 26.8%: Blue Beetle

- 29.3%: Batsiders

- 29.7%: Authority

- 30.4%: Teen Titans

- 36.2%: Gen13

- 37.3%: Wonder Woman

- 40.2%: Arrow/Canary

- 40.3%: Flash

- 42.1%: Wonder Woman

- 44.0%: Robin

- 45.1%: Spirit

- 48.2%: Simon Dark

- 61.8%: WoW

—–

2-YEAR COMPARISONS

+ 41.1%: Nightwing

+ 20.6%: Batsiders

+ 11.5%: Batman

+  8.9%: Detective Comics

+  6.1%: GL Corps

-  7.3%: Scooby-Doo

- 10.4%: Robin

- 11.1%: Superman

- 12.3%: Action Comics

- 12.4%: Fables

- 14.5%: Hellblazer

- 18.3%: 100 Bullets

- 20.3%: Arrow/Canary

- 27.2%: Supergirl

- 28.4%: Ex Machina

- 31.4%: Jack of Fables

- 32.6%: LoSH

- 33.1%: Jonah Hex

- 37.8%: DMZ

- 39.4%: Birds of Prey

- 39.8%: Teen Titans

- 51.1%: Flash

- 53.9%: Blue Beetle

- 56.8%: Wonder Woman

- 70.8%: Spirit

- 71.8%: Gen13

- 77.2%: StormWatch

—–

5-YEAR COMPARISONS

+ 96.3%: Action Comics

+ 71.8%: Nightwing

+ 71.0%: Detective Comics

+ 65.8%: Superman

+ 58.0%: JSA

+ 28.7%: Robin

+ 14.8%: Wonder Woman

+  6.6%: Batman

- 10.0%: Fables

- 10.8%: Batsiders

- 12.4%: LoSH 

- 20.1%: Wildcats

- 20.5%: Batgirl

- 21.7%: Flash

- 24.3%: Looney Tunes

- 26.6%: Hellblazer

- 28.0%: Gen13

- 29.7%: Scooby-Doo

- 31.9%: Birds of Prey

- 33.3%: Arrow/Canary

- 44.4%: Teen Titans

- 51.5%: Authority

—–

Average Periodical Sales

(not counting reprints, reorders shipping after the initial month of release, Johnny DC titles and magazines)

DC COMICS

11/2003: 25,397

11/2004: 31,940

11/2005: 32,971

11/2006: 34,906

---------------

11/2007: 29,427 (- 6.6%)

12/2007: 33,138 (+12.6%)

01/2008: 27,033 (-18.4%)

02/2008: 27,652 (+ 2.3%)

03/2008: 26,423 (- 4.5%)

04/2008: 28,051 (+ 6.1%)

05/2008: 27,075 (- 3.5%)

06/2008: 27,367 (+ 1.1%)

07/2008: 27,436 (+ 0.3%)

08/2008: 29,678 (+ 8.2%)

09/2008: 25,562 (-13.9%)

10/2008: 29,109 (+13.9%)

11/2008: 25,340 (-13.0%)

----------------

6 months: - 6.4%

1 year  : -13.9%

2 years : -27.4%

3 years : -23.2%

4 years : -20.7%

5 years : - 0.2%
DC UNIVERSE

11/2003: 28,712

11/2004: 40,291

11/2005: 42,342

11/2006: 45,399

---------------

11/2007: 37,257 (- 5.5%)

12/2007: 40,074 (+ 7.6%)

01/2008: 33,654 (-16.0%)

02/2008: 35,994 (+ 7.0%)

03/2008: 33,151 (- 7.9%)

04/2008: 35,452 (+ 6.9%)

05/2008: 35,230 (- 0.6%)

06/2008: 35,800 (+ 1.6%)

07/2008: 35,553 (- 0.7%)

08/2008: 38,502 (+ 8.3%)

09/2008: 33,591 (-13.0%)

10/2008: 37,273 (+11.0%)

11/2008: 33,096 (-11.2%)

----------------

6 months: - 6.1%

1 year  : -11.2%

2 years : -27.1%

3 years : -21.8%

4 years : -17.9%

5 years : +15.3%
VERTIGO

11/2003: 18,008

11/2004: 15,239

11/2005: 15,730

11/2006: 13,773

---------------

11/2007: 10,946 (+ 2.5%)

12/2007: 11,035 (+ 0.8%)

01/2008: 10,115 (- 8.3%)

02/2008: 10,885 (+ 7.6%)

03/2008: 10,484 (- 3.7%)

04/2008: 10,550 (+ 0.6%)

05/2008: 10,418 (- 1.3%)

06/2008: 10,491 (+ 0.7%)

07/2008: 10,821 (+ 3.2%)

08/2008: 10,979 (+ 1.5%)

09/2008: 11,748 (+ 7.0%)

10/2008: 11,284 (- 4.0%)

11/2008: 11,936 (+ 5.8%)

----------------

6 months: +14.6%

1 year  : + 9.0%

2 years : -13.3%

3 years : -24.1%

4 years : -21.7%

5 years : -33.7%
WILDSTORM

11/2003: 15,803

11/2004: 16,628

11/2005: 16,255

11/2006: 18,987

---------------

11/2007: 15,109 (+26.3%)

12/2007: 15,601 (+ 3.3%)

01/2008: 14,033 (-10.1%)

02/2008: 13,155 (- 6.3%)

03/2008: 12,842 (- 2.4%)

04/2008: 12,156 (- 5.3%)

05/2008:  9,812 (-19.3%)

06/2008:  9,806 (- 0.1%)

07/2008:  9,875 (+ 0.7%)

08/2008: 10,064 (+ 1.9%)

09/2008: 11,864 (+17.9%)

10/2008: 10,736 (- 9.5%)

11/2008: 10,220 (- 4.8%)

----------------

6 months: + 4.2%

1 year  : -32.4%

2 years : -46.2%

3 years : -37.1%

4 years : -38.5%

5 years : -35.3%

—–

OTHER PUBLISHERS

8 - BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER (Dark Horse Comics)

11/2001: Buffy #39 --  16,000*

11/2002: Buffy #51 --  16,028*

11/2003: Buffy #63 --  14,130

-----------------------------

11/2007: Buffy #8  --  91,595 (- 2.7%) [ 96,975]

12/2007: Buffy #9  --  89,556 (- 2.2%)

01/2008: Buffy #10 --  88,474 (- 1.2%)

02/2008: Buffy #11 --  88,070 (- 0.5%)

03/2008: Buffy #12 --  88,930 (+ 1.0%)

04/2008: Buffy #13 --  83,580 (- 6.0%)

05/2008: Buffy #14 --  82,069 (- 1.8%)

06/2008: Buffy #15 --  80,464 (- 2.0%)

07/2008: Buffy #16 --  82,031 (+ 2.0%)

08/2008: Buffy #17 --  79,307 (- 3.3%)

09/2008: Buffy #18 --  77,589 (- 2.2%)

10/2008: --

11/2008: Buffy #19 --  74,202 (- 4.4%)

-----------------

6 months: -  9.6%

1 year  : - 19.0%

5 years : +425.1%
47 - ANGEL: AFTER THE FALL (IDW)

11/2001: Angel #3 of 4          -- 15,130*

11/2006: Auld Lang Syne #1 of 5 --  8,057

-----------------------------------------

11/2007: After the Fall #1      -- 47,563 (+648.9%) [74,342]

12/2007: After the Fall #2      -- 44,792 (-  5.8%) [56,396]

01/2008: After the Fall #3      -- 46,013 (+  2.7%) [50,175]

02/2008: After the Fall #4      -- 48,407 (+  5.2%) [57,555]

03/2008: After the Fall #5      -- 49,558 (+  2.4%) 

04/2008: After the Fall #6      -- 46,645 (-  5.9%) [51,044]

05/2008: After the Fall #7      -- 45,430 (-  2.6%)

06/2008: After the Fall #8      -- 47,888 (+  5.4%)

06/2008: After the Fall #9      -- 47,081 (-  1.7%)

07/2008: After the Fall #10     -- 43,024 (-  8.6%) [45,510]

08/2008: After the Fall #11     -- 44,905 (+  4.4%)

09/2008: After the Fall #12     -- 43,019 (-  4.2%)

10/2008: After the Fall #13     -- 40,838 (-  5.1%)

11/2008: After the Fall #14     -- 38,954 (-  4.6%)

-----------------

6 months: - 14.3%

1 year  : - 18.1%

2 years : +383.5%

The two Joss Whedon titles keep slipping noticeably, but they also continue to dominate the market in terms of periodicals not by Marvel or DC. As usual, both Buffy and Angel were supported through variant-cover editions.

—–

50 - THE UMBRELLA ACADEMY (Dark Horse Comics)

09/2007: Apocalypse Suite #1 of 6 -- 37,698 [48,514]

10/2007: Apocalypse Suite #2 of 6 -- 31,176 [36,002]

11/2007: Apocalypse Suite #3 of 6 -- 29,508 [34,699]

12/2007: Apocalypse Suite #4 of 6 -- 28,703 [31,583]

01/2008: Apocalypse Suite #5 of 6 -- 29,736

02/2008: Apocalypse Suite #6 of 6 -- 28,879

-------------------------------------------

11/2008: Dallas #1 of 6           -- 36,791 (+27.4%)

-----------------

1 year  : + 24.7%

The Umbrella Academy caught the market by surprise last year, as the tons of reorders for the first four issues can attest. Given all the acclaim the book has garnered in addition to being a commercial breakout title, a mere 37K seems a little conservative now – although it’s still a very good number compared to everything else, of course.

As with the last series, sales of The Umbrella Academy: Dallas #1 were boosted by a variant-cover edition. I’m curious where the numbers go from here.

—–

68 - STAR WARS: LEGACY (Dark Horse Comics)

11/2006: Star Wars: Legacy #5  -- 34,362

11/2006: Star Wars: Legacy #6  -- 33,003

----------------------------------------

11/2007: Star Wars: Legacy #17 -- 31,197 (-0.1%)

12/2007: -- 

01/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #18 -- 31,038 (-0.5%)

02/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #19 -- 30,953 (-0.3%)

02/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #20 -- 29,896 (-3.4%)

03/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #21 -- 30,228 (+1.1%)

04/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #22 -- 30,205 (-0.1%)

05/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #23 -- 30,355 (+0.5%)

05/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #24 -- 29,601 (-2.5%)

06/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #25 -- 29,548 (-0.2%)

07/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #26 -- 29,123 (-1.4%)

08/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #27 -- 28,549 (-2.0%)

09/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #28 -- 29,331 (+2.7%)

10/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #29 -- 28,469 (-2.9%)

11/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #30 -- 28,032 (-1.5%)

----------------

6 months: - 6.5%

1 year  : -10.2%

2 years : -16.8%

Rock-solid numbers, as usual, but the “Vector” crossover does’t seem to have any effect on the numbers, at this point.

—–

75 - BLACK TERROR (Dynamite Entertainment)

11/2008: Black Terror #1  -- 25,133

This is an ongoing title spinning out of Alex Ross and Jim Krueger’s Project: Superpowers miniseries, which is now evidently a franchise.

Sales pick up right where the mother title left off, at any rate, which means the book is performing decently, if not impressively. Like for Project: Superpowers, there were multiple variant-cover editions to bolster the numbers.

—–

82/86 - THE WALKING DEAD (Image Comics)

11/2003: Walking Dead #2  --  6,078

11/2004: Walking Dead #12 -- 14,539

11/2004: Walking Dead #13 -- 14,590

11/2005: Walking Dead #23 -- 18,482

11/2005: Walking Dead #24 -- 18,545

11/2006: Walking Dead #32 -- 21,191

-----------------------------------

11/2007: Walking Dead #43 -- 22,569 (- 0.7%)

12/2007: Walking Dead #45 -- 22,674 (+ 0.5%)

01/2008: --

02/2008: Walking Dead #46 -- 22,870 (+ 0.9%)

03/2008: Walking Dead #47 -- 22,612 (- 1.1%)

04/2008: Walking Dead #48 -- 22,465 (- 0.7%)

05/2008: Walking Dead #49 -- 23,102 (+ 2.8%)

06/2008: --

07/2008: Walking Dead #50 -- 27,691 (+19.9%)

08/2008: Walking Dead #51 -- 23,121 (-16.5%)

09/2008: Walking Dead #52 -- 23,627 (+ 2.2%)

10/2008: Walking Dead #53 -- 24,094 (+ 2.0%)

11/2008: Walking Dead #54 -- 24,093 (- 0.0%)

11/2008: Walking Dead #55 -- 23,885 (- 0.9%)

-----------------

6 months: +  1.7%

1 year  : +  4.1%

2 years : + 10.9%

5 years : +286.5%

The Walking Dead is holding up nicely, as the long-term comparisons show. It’s the Benjamin Button of the periodical comics market, really.

—–

87 - SPAWN (Image Comics/TMP)

11/2001: Spawn #116 -- 46,784*

11/2002: Spawn #116 -- 39,281*

11/2003: Spawn #130 -- 37,030

11/2004: Spawn #140 -- 27,376

11/2005: --

11/2006: Spawn #162 -- 25,069

-----------------------------

11/2007: Spawn #172 -- 23,628 (- 0.6%)

12/2007: Spawn #173 -- 23,136 (- 2.1%)

01/2008: Spawn #174 -- 22,667 (- 2.0%)

02/2008: Spawn #175 -- 22,338 (- 1.5%)

03/2008: Spawn #176 -- 21,104 (- 5.5%)

04/2008: Spawn #177 -- 20,566 (- 2.6%)

05/2008: Spawn #178 -- 20,046 (- 2.5%)

06/2008: Spawn #179 -- 19,759 (- 1.4%)

07/2008: Spawn #180 -- 19,188 (- 2.9%)

08/2008: Spawn #181 -- 19,112 (- 0.4%)

09/2008: Spawn #182 -- 19,078 (- 0.2%)

09/2008: Spawn #183 -- 17,944 (- 5.9%)

10/2008: Spawn #184 -- 18,023 (+ 0.4%)

10/2008: Spawn #185 -- 26,775 (+48.6%)

11/2008: Spawn #186 -- 23,725 (-11.4%)

----------------

6 months: +18.4%

1 year  : + 0.4%

2 years : - 5.4%

5 years : -35.9%

Oh, look. Spawn sales jolted up by 50% in October, and nobody noticed. That’s because October was a pretty crowded month, of course, and the book didn’t make the Top 100 despite the sales boost. November was rather weak, though, so here we are.

The increase for issue #185 was partially due to multiple variant-cover editions, at any rate, and partially because a new creative team including Spawn creator Todd McFarlane (who’s co-writing, in case you’re wondering, not drawing) and fellow Image founder Whilce Portacio took over. The November issue retains most of the boost, although these numbers are obviously still a far cry from those of the book’s glory days.

On balance, I’d say this is probably as good as it gets for Spawn without the added draw of superstar creators, so: mission accomplished, really.

—–

91 - CONAN (Dark Horse Comics)

11/2004: Conan #10     -- 43,216

11/2005: Conan #22     -- 33,653

11/2006: Conan #34     -- 28,144

--------------------------------

11/2007: Conan #46     -- 22,937 (- 2.4%)

12/2007: Conan #47     -- 22,140 (- 3.5%)

01/2008: Conan #48     -- 21,850 (- 1.3%)

02/2008: Conan #49     -- 21,690 (- 0.7%)

03/2008: --

04/2008: --

05/2008: Conan #50     -- 22,542 (+ 3.9%)

06/2008: Cimmerian #0  -- ?

07/2008: Cimmerian #1  -- 31,296 (+38.8%)

08/2008: Cimmerian #2  -- 25,762 (-17.7%)

09/2008: Cimmerian #3  -- 25,102 (- 2.6%)

10/2008: Cimmerian #4  -- 24,790 (- 1.2%)

11/2008: Cimmerian #5  -- 23,277 (- 6.1%)

----------------

6 months: + 3.3%

1 year  : + 1.5%

2 years : -17.3%

These are decent figures, given that the creative team behind the relaunch is the same that worked on the previous series.

—–

Disclaimers, et cetera

The numbers above are estimates for comic-book sales in the North American direct market, as calculated by ICv2.com according to the chart and index information provided by Diamond Comic Distributors.

ICv2.com‘s estimates are traditionally known to be somewhat lower than the actual numbers, but they are consistent from month to month, so the trends they show are fairly accurate. Since it’s a “month-to-month” column, the comments, unless otherwise noted, are on the most recent month. The estimates from March 2001 to February 2003 (marked with an asterisk) were for initial orders rather than actual sales, so they’re only roughly compatible with the subsequent figures.

Bear in mind that the figures measure sales to retailers, not customers. Also, these numbers do not include sales to bookstores, newsstands, other mass market retail chains or the United Kingdom. Reorders are included, so long as they either reached stores in a book’s initial month of release or were strong enough to make the chart again in a subsequent month.

If additional copies of an issue did appear on the chart after the book’s initial month of release, you can see the total number of copies sold in parenthesis behind those issues (e.g. “[36,599]”). Should more than one issue have shipped in a month which is relevant for one of the long-term comparisons, the average will be used.

Titles released under the Johnny DC imprint and magazines, such as Mad, mostly sell through channels other than the direct market, so direct-market sales don’t tell us much about their performance. For most Vertigo and some WildStorm titles, collection sales tend to be a significant factor, so the numbers for those books should be taken with a grain of salt as well. To learn (a little) more about Vertigo’s collection sales, go right here.

—–

Germany-based Marc-Oliver Frisch has a weblog and regularly contributes to Comicgate.

1 COMMENT

  1. “Oh, look. Spawn sales jolted up by 50% in October, and nobody noticed. That’s because October was a pretty crowded month, of course, and the book didn’t make the Top 100 despite the sales boost. November was rather weak, though, so here we are.”

    I swear, nothing on you, but when I read comments like these I imagine your voice and delivery very similar to The Comic Book Guy from The Simpsons.

    Carry on.

  2. It DOES seem to be a bit of a snarky snippy entry this month, doesn’t it? Yikes.

    As I said when SS #1 popped up on this list, I make no claim to understanding all the numbers. All I do know is what they printed of number one, and how few they had left at the time, and the numbers would lead one to assume sales were higher by a few thousand. But I’ll be the first to admit that there may be factors in there that I am unaware of.

    Best,

    Gail

  3. “Both Titans and Teen Titans keep losing readers by the truckload. DC clearly shot themselves in the foot by retooling Titans three months into its run – whatever they did to the book, it seems to have caused the numbers of a commercial hit to go into a tailspin.”

    I believe “whatever they did” is leaving Judd Winick and Sean McKeever to continue writing their respective titles despite their stories being poorly received by readers.

  4. Secret Six could just be selling really well in the UK or something.

    Oh, and it’s kind of amusing that McFarlane returning got Spawn up to the point it was a year ago. I think he might call it a day at issue 200.

  5. “10/2008: Jimmy Olsen #1 — 31,993: Unless that was a miscalculation, this suggests that the target audience has become much more selective about which spin-off books they’re spending money on.”

    That Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olson Special #1 carried a $4.99 cover price (and plus, it was about Jimmy Olson!–SNORE!)… so it’s no wonder that many people might have passed on this one. Also of note, DC made this issue returnable (I know my comic shop sent back 90% of what they ordered!).

  6. Look I know it’s your column and all – and I do appreciate you taking the time to writing it every month. But I found your Schadenfreude about Blue Beetle particularly hurtful.

    There was a small but vocal community that loved the book and would praise it to anyone who would listen. I still do in fact, as the trades are readily available.

    It seems unnecessarily harsh and cruel to compound that grief and go out of your way to say this is “not a proper concern.”

    That book was the only book at DC right now that was actually a joy to read. It was like reading a comic for the first time as a kid with every issue. Blue Beetle was fantastic and I am truly upset by its loss.

  7. I’m truly upset that so many comic readers seem intent on spending their lives trying to recreate what it was like to read comics when they were twelve. And the shit ass publishers happily attempting to cater to the fans masturbatory/obsessive compulsive complex. I guess that’s why after 100 bullets is done that just leaves Jonah Hex for me….

  8. OK, this was just awesome (concerning Blue Beetle):

    “Cancelled with issue #36. Amazingly, people seem upset by that. What happened to proper concerns such as the rain forest, the economic crisis, Kramers Ergot #7, or Oxford commas?”

    You said it better than Abhay and Tucker!

    I’m very sad to see Air has miserable sales. I love it, even if I’m the only one!

    My brother *loves* Young Liars. My brother is also a true genius. He often sees things in ways no other person on Earth can. (He doesn’t much care for Air, though.)

  9. If I want to feel like being twelve, then I’ll read the comics I read when I was twelve. Nothing new by DC is going to compare to that.

    It just gets me every month that only 7,000 people a month are reading Scalped. Scalped is the kind of comic that makes sticking with comics since I was ten worthwhile.

  10. “I’m truly upset that so many comic readers seem intent on spending their lives trying to recreate what it was like to read comics when they were twelve.”

    Well, I do the same thing, and that doesn’t mean I buy shitty superhero comics that wish it was still 1982 or whatever. It means I buy comics that fill me with a sense of wonder and excitement. So that goes for both Blue Beetle and Scalped. “Fun” is relative.

  11. People are upset that Blue Beetle is ending because Blue Beetle had fantastic writing and characterization. Unfortunately it couldn’t pick up weary readers. I don’t try to many new books now a days because I don’t have the money to buy the books I normally did.

  12. I dropped Blue Beetle because it was JUST fun; I wasn’t compelled to pick up monthly. Part of the reason was that I didn’t want just a fun book for $3 a pop. I would still be reading that if it was $2.25, a price point that a lot of books should be at. Unfortunately Secret 6 is falling into this category as well as House of Mystery.

    I’ll champion Scalped also. Who isn’t jazzed to see what happens to Dash after a heroin binge? I’ve been on the edge of my seat for months now!

  13. I can stand passive aggressive people. To all you people posting? Say what you wanna say and stop beating around the bush.
    I for one love when this comes out every month, and more so than the marvel one, cause I collect more DC and also, because you include extras like buffy, walking dead.. etc. So keep up the Great work Marc!!

  14. As Supertramp said on one of their albums. Crisis? What crises? DC is really botching things as of late. The only good books are JSA and Green Lantern. JLA is tanking so fast. Kevin Smith’s Batman book is really bad. Guess it did not pay off too much since he is is losing his store in LA. What happened to Kevin Smith? Too much jib jab with his posse site I guess. Kevin is living off the fumes of Seth Rogen. Man get off your ass and do something original. Kevin just don’t appear on My Name is Earl if things go real bad. I know this will end up on his forum site and Myspace site where they all kiss his ass. Kissing ass does not pay bills.

  15. Good column. A couple of the comments remind me of reading comments at Newsarama. I don’t know why people get so upset about the analysis. We’re talking about (mostly lousy) comic books! I particularly liked the Benjamin Button comparison to the Walking Dead.

    BTW, really good comment:
    Kris Says:
    01/9/09 at 5:05 pm

    I’m truly upset that so many comic readers seem intent on spending their lives trying to recreate what it was like to read comics when they were twelve. And the shit ass publishers happily attempting to cater to the fans masturbatory/obsessive compulsive complex. I guess that’s why after 100 bullets is done that just leaves Jonah Hex for me….

  16. Gail:

    “It DOES seem to be a bit of a snarky snippy entry this month, doesn’t it?”

    I strive for snippy snark every month, but I realize I may have failed in the past. Nobody’s perfect.

    Regarding SECRET SIX, though, my comment was actually meant to be snippy-snark-free this month.

  17. Brian:

    “I believe “whatever they did” is leaving Judd Winick and Sean McKeever to continue writing their respective titles despite their stories being poorly received by readers.”

    I’m skeptical. If that’s the case, why was there a sales increase between TEEN TITANS EAST SPECIAL and TITANS #1? By the time orders for the series were due, retailers had feedback on the one-shot, and they’re by the same creative team.

  18. There are several reasons why sales on DC (and Marvel) comics are plummeting.

    1. the economy

    2. Most of their superhero books have either become to “mature” or are trying way to hard to be “mature”. The Big 2 don’t seem to realize that putting cuss words,graphic violence,and strong sexual innuendos in comics featuring characters originally created for and aimed at kids/all ages DOES NOT make older teens and adults (especially those older teen and adults who have never read a superhero comic in their entire life) want to start buying their comics. On the contrary, it seems to have the opposite effect and turns many people off from wanting to read their comics. Given a choice, MOST people of all ages would rather watch an episode of the TV-Y7 all ages JLU cartoon then read an issue of the more “mature” current JLA title which has shown uncensored and on panel scenes of characters getting their arms ripped off (Red Tornado in his human body),a female character having an on panel erotic sex dream (Hawkgirl getting boned by Hawkman),and cuss words like “bastard” and “ass” being used in several issues. And don’t get me started on the current TEEN TITANS series.

    3. MOST of the books have shifted away from fun action packed superheroics and have become bring talking heads drama.

    4. Long,boring,and drawn out story arcs.

    5. Confusing and stupid crossovers.

    6. Their characters (especially Superman,Flash,Wonder Woman,Plastic Man,Martian Manhunter,and Firestorm) have become too damn powerful.

    7. They have restored many of the stupid Silver Age elements to many of their books (especially Superman)

    8. They can’t see to stick to one direction for any of their characters or books.

    9. DC has it’s collective head up Hollywood’s butt, and are constantly changing their characters to reflect the way they are portrayed in their live action and animated TV and movie projects. Don’t believe me, just look at the hoody costume Black Lightning was wearing in this weeks BLACK LIGHTNING:YEAR ONE comic and last nights BATMAN:THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD episode.

    10. They are trying to maintain their small and shrinking existing older teen and adult readership, as well as trying to attract a very narrow older teen and adult readership. They should instead be trying to attract a wide all ages audience.

    11. They rely way too much on sales gimmicks/stunts to temporarily boost sales on their comics.

    12. They rely way to much on popular,critically acclaimed,and/or celebrity NAME (as Priest likes to call them) creators to sell their comics instead of pushing the characters and concepts behind the books.

  19. Marc-Oliver Frisch said:

    “If that’s the case, why was there a sales increase between TEEN TITANS EAST SPECIAL and TITANS #1?”

    Because Titans #1 was a collectible! It’s gonna be worth a mint some day, and people will sell it to finance a college education for their children.

  20. “The Anti-DC bias is clearly obvious every month.”

    Anti-DC bias? I guess I see it more as tough love. I really like DC comics, but the last few years they have really gone down hill or blowing potential storylines. Can you blame people for being frustrated?

  21. I really do think sales on Titans would have dropped with or without the retooling. That kind of retro-image style gets really tired after a few issues. Books like the first volume of Youngblood probably had similar sales curves.

  22. “Gail:

    “It DOES seem to be a bit of a snarky snippy entry this month, doesn’t it?”

    I strive for snippy snark every month, but I realize I may have failed in the past. Nobody’s perfect.

    Regarding SECRET SIX, though, my comment was actually meant to be snippy-snark-free this month. ”

    Nah, I wasn’t talking about your SS comments, which I regard as perfectly fair. I just meant some of the other stuff seemed a lot less fun and a lot more bitchy that your usual, enjoyable comments. As a purely personal matter, I prefer the other approach you’ve taken in the past, as this just makes you sound snide, and I have never thought of you in that manner.

    That’s all!

    I never thought you had an anti-dc bias or anything like that, just to clarify.

    Best,

    Gail

  23. I think when you’ve got a book called Countdown to Final Crisis it should lead into Final Crisis. When you’ve got a storyline like Batman RIP with “CONCLUSION” on the cover it shouldn’t conclude months later in another series. It’s like if you had the ball in Times’ Square stop the countdown at 2 on New Years’ and it finishes dropping in February after they’ve moved it to Texas.

  24. Am I the only one who is getting burned out on JLA? I really didnt care for the Milestone characters when the line was around in 90s and I really don’t care for them now, especially in a mainstream DCU title.

  25. >“If that’s the case, why was there a sales increase between TEEN TITANS EAST SPECIAL and TITANS #1?”

    Who were the characters in each of them?

    The Titans East Special had Cyborg… and a bunch of less-known characters that were surely going to be treated as cannon fodder and be led to disaster, if not slaughter. And this is exactly what happened. Their fate is especially no surprise in this era of DC comics.

    Titans #1 had Cyborg… and Nightwing, Donna Troy, Flash, Beast Boy, Starfire, and Raven. It was the Wolfman/Perez Titans Reunion Tour. They’re well-known Titans characters. They’re not going to be tossed aside quite so quickly. It makes perfect sense that this book would sell better than a team of not-so-popular characters that was deliberately set up to fail.

  26. >I think when you’ve got a book called Countdown to Final Crisis it should lead into Final Crisis. When you’ve got a storyline like Batman RIP with “CONCLUSION” on the cover it shouldn’t conclude months later in another series.

    And when you promote Final Crisis Secret Files as FINALLY connecting the dots between Countdown to Final Crisis and Final Crisis, it’s a pretty good idea to make sure it delivers on that.

  27. I think RIP did deliver on all levels. It was a real rip-off from start to finish. The dénouement was really flat and I was RIPPED of my money and time. The woes of DC can be solved very easily, can Dan DiDio and bring in Jim Shooter. The man has more experience and besides his gig with The Legion is over. That should be the mission of DC this year. Can Dan.

  28. >bring in Jim Shooter

    Clearly, DC needs a stronger hand at the helm. I believe DiDio can right the ship, but it’s not going to be easy. Hopefully the April solicitations will have something with some sales potential in them.

    LL

  29. Gail,

    I’m sure I’ve bounced around quite a bit over the years, as far as the tone is concerned, so I’ll just say this: When a comment comes across as snide or snippy, then – and I know this is no excuse – it’s probably a failure on my part to get my often overly connective and specific sense of humor across.

    Because, honestly, I do have a sense of humor about the comics, the thought that my one lasting contribution to the Internets is, of all things, a sales column on, of all things, DC Comics, or the fact that I get to talk to people like you, for whom “comics” means more than an armchair and a calculator. Frankly, I’m by turns amused by and in awe of the whole thing.

    But, scout’s honor: Clenched teeth or snideness don’t enter the equation. I would hug all those BLUE BEETLE people out there right now, if I could (and the KRAMERS ERGOT people, too, just so you know), and I promise I’ll try better next time.

    That said, I do take exception to your insinuation that I do not have an anti-DC bias. In fact, my anti-DC bias is HUGE, and I am complimented on it all the time, wherever I go and by both sexes.

  30. Re: Titans

    As Herald pointed out, TTE #1 had Cyborg and a plethora of D-listers. TITANS #1 had the A-listers. It’s only natural there’d be a massive sales jump. It’s analogous to JLA going from Blue Devil, Crimson Fox and Metamorpho, to the Big Seven.

    Also, while a lot of people blame Winick (and I’m not saying he’s blameless) I also attribute a lot of the sales decline to the loss of Ian Churchill. Honestly, it was like going from Jack Kirby to Don Heck. I claim that at least 5k of the lost sales, if not more, are directly attributable to losing Churchill.

    Re: Blue Beetle

    Heh, the moment I read your comments I thought to myself, “this is gonna hurt” and braced for hurt BB fans. :D

    Re: Kris

    I’m truly upset that so many comic readers seem intent on spending their lives trying to recreate what it was like to read comics when they were twelve.

    You don’t get to dictate what other people have the right to like. If somebody wants to recreate comics from the 60s, 70s or 80s or 90s, that’s their right. Just like people have the right to like 50s type music best, or 60s, or maybe they think the 70s were the tops, or whatever.

    Everybody has the right to prefer whatever art style they prefer. You wanna get upset about people having different tastes than you, feel free to develop an ulcer.

  31. tone said:

    “The woes of DC can be solved very easily, can Dan DiDio…”

    You guys tried that last year. Is this to be an annual event like Bill O’Really whining about the War On Christmas?

  32. “You guys tried that last year.”

    Are we on the Time-Warner board of directors now? If so, I didn’t get a vote on the matter.

    Although considering that the corporation has allegedly stopped work on all DC-related movies while their stock keeps right on plummeting, one wonders if some of them need to get the boot, too.

  33. Personally I enjoyed the comments. Didn’t hurt that most of them where spot on. I especially enjoyed the Teen Titan comments. If people want less honestly, maybe its time for DC to finally step up their game rather then counting on Geoff Johns to do all the heavy lifting.

  34. I wonder if the relatively overpriced Teen Titans and Birds of Prey trade paperbacks are a factor in the declining sales of their monthly titles. Potential new readers who want to catch up on the series before buying the current issues have some pretty pricey (and very thin) trades to buy. The first few Teen Titans and BoP trades were a real bargain, in comparision.
    LL

  35. “LOL I LOVE your comments so much!!!! All the haters! Gail gets SO mad! I love her so much too!! ”

    What?

    I’m not mad at all, and never was mad!

    I like Marc and respect what he does here!

    Wow, the net is weird sometimes.

    And no worries, Marc, actually, I think like a couple others, I just thought it just seemed like you might be having a bad day or something.

    Best,

    Gail

  36. I enjoyed this month’s column, as I do every month. I appreciate that it must be difficult to try and analyze very similar numbers/trends for the same titles month after month and I appreciate the (usually successful, for me) attempts at humor.

    On another note, Secret Six is one of only 2 DC titles I currently read but it goes to the top of the pile everytime it comes out. One of the best titles out there right now, it really should be in the top 20. Hopefully the first trade will sell gangbusters.

  37. With regards to Titans, I loved the first few issues, but then they changed it all around and I lost interest and DC lost a sale….

  38. Seriously, who the hell thought Vixen deserved to star in her own mini-series? The character defines D-list. I hope Vibe gets his own special (in flashback, natch) by summer.

  39. Any chance of showing the figures for Doctor who: The forgotten from IDW next month? I am loving that series, but dont know where else to check how its doing!?!

    Thanks!! ;)