Confirming rumors, it’s been announced that Justice League #1 has indeed sold out. Nikki Finke gets the scoop:

But I can tell you exclusively that the first printing of Justice League #1 has officially sold out today in advance of tomorrow’s on-sale date, and DC is rushing back to press for a second printing. (Yes, I know: these things almost always sell out. And in the not-so-old days sold way more.) Over 200,000 physical copies of JL1, along with tens of thousands of digital copies, are expected to be sold worldwide. I understand that Justice League #1 has a particular connection to DC Entertainment President Diane Nelson’s exec team, as its writer is DCE’s Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns and its artist is DCE’s Co-Publisher Jim Lee, two of the biggest creators in the industry.

Man, when Nikki says she doesn’t do geek, she isn’t kidding.

The comments are all over the fact that 200,000 isn’t really all THAT huge a number, compared to olden days — X-MEN #1 sold 3 million copies, yadda yadda. But, you know, it’s a new world. Let’s be happy with what we have.

Aside: Has DC ever released an image of the new JL #1 with the LOGO attached?


  1. Big day tomorrow! Also; I wonder if there’s a variant cover available that doesn’t have Green Lantern thrusting his big chain-gun c**k into battle!

  2. Know you weren’t trying to state the exact X-Men sales — but before someone latches onto the 3 mil figure, it was 8,186,500 copies, per Marvel’s internals.


    200k+ is, I mentioned earlier, in the range I expected given the number of shops currently, and it’s a number which holds a good prospect that most copies are going to readers as opposed to people buying multiples (which was the case with 1991’s X-Men #1 in spades).

  3. I note that Nikki Finke also confirms that the 200K is a worldwide figure, so people should bear in mind that this is not directly comparable to the numbers on the North American direct market charts. And on any view we’re still talking about numbers lower than, say, SECRET INVASION #1. So it’s a very good number for the current market, but not a game-changing one in itself.

    But that’s not really the point, because this exercise isn’t about one or two massive sellers, it’s about raising sales across the board for the whole line, and keeping them there for an extended period. It’s the mid-table sales that will be really interesting to watch. Personally, given the hype for the first month and the distortion of one-off returnability, I doubt we’ll have any clear idea how this is going until the November charts at the earliest.

  4. It’s not just about the numbers. The properties don’t end on the page. It’s what DC does with them after this. Getting their universe in line is the first step. From here, video games, movies, cartoons, TV, licensing. All stuff we’ll only get bits and pieces of information wise. Even the numbers we won’t fully be aware of, no matter how hard people try to numbercrunch. It’s about step one in a long journey. And if their comics hold the line (see what I did there) for only 3-4 months, that’s a success. Because there are many more goals to be focused on.

  5. What Paul says.

    So far, what we know suggests that the relaunch is doing okay for DC. Ultimately, though, it’s the sales six, twelve, twenty-four months down the road that count.

    And, probably more so, the digital side of things, of course. There’s way more untapped potential there than in the direct market.

  6. “There’s way more untapped potential there than in the direct market.”

    I believe Brian Hibbs recently remarked that he doesn’t think there are millions of people out there waiting for a chance to read digital comics. He’s almost certainly right about that, but there are hundreds of millions of people out there who just want to be entertained. However, you’ve got to hit the right price point and have creators capable of playing on the big stage.


  7. It’s what DC does with them after this. Getting their universe in line is the first step. [. . .] Because there are many more goals to be focused on.

    Those are important to DC Entertainment employees, Time Warner stockholders, and some other people, but why should readers of the comic books care how well the characters are exploited in other markets? The comic books should be enough to entertain; if done well and profitable, they should survive regardless. Buying a comic book isn’t taking a stake in the success of the corporate publisher.


  8. It would be interesting to eventually get figures for sales (Marvel & DC) in al channells including worldwide and Digital. this would give us a better view of the current market. I mean I often see letters from readers outside North America and we know digital can be accessed almost anywhere. I am sure with all these channels the market is not as weak as we think.

  9. Well, would YOU show people that logo, if you could avoid it? I assume that they looked at Chip Kidd’s slapdash ALL-STAR logos and said “Can you give me something like this, but 25% worse?”

  10. “I believe Brian Hibbs recently remarked that he doesn’t think there are millions of people out there waiting for a chance to read digital comics. He’s almost certainly right about that…”

    He’s certainly wrong about that. They just don’t want to read the same rebaked superhero stuff the publishers have been selling since Roosevelt still had the use of both of his legs.

    They want to read about people just like them being snarky about video games and movies. A different type of poison to be sure, but they do so in the millions. That the direct market can’t change gears to try and grab them for fear of losing the superhero fanboys is going to be the death of them no matter how many publicity stunts they pull.

    A slow, agonizing suffocation of a death.

  11. “He’s certainly wrong about that.”

    You know, I was goint to be snarky but it’s not even worth it. Either the nu52 will work or it won’t. If it does, folks like William George won’t care. If it doesn’t, they can finally get to see what happens to their precious non-super-hero comics when the Direct Market disappears.


  12. I’ve had no problem getting comics outside the direct market since, oh, I’ve had an Internet connection. I can even read superhero comics if I want.

    Sure, they’re not the same franchise characters that certain types of geek treat more like religion than a form of entertainment. (I mean, the attachment must be akin to religion because they keep buying the titles no matter how horrible the stories become) But I do not go unentertained.

  13. Webcomics are unaffected by the machinations of the direct market, yes.

    But it’s all comics. I understand why Cape-Man Adventures may not be for you, but it’s a good thing for the industry as a whole if any comic is making moves to try to better itself.

  14. Issue 2 always has lower sales so I’ll be interested how many stick around. I ahve a feeling in the end it will go back to the previous print run numbers after it levels out.