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[Please note these are the figures for DECEMBER, not November as I mistakenly posted — Ed.]

By Paul O’Brien

CIVIL WAR is still going, but with the core title running late (because you demanded it), and many of the crossover arcs having finished, it’s started to relinquish its grip on Marvel’s line. But December still saw three CIVIL WAR one-shots, along with several crossover issues. It’s a relatively quiet month for new launches, but we do have the debut of Warren Ellis and Salvador Larroca’s NEWUNIVERSAL, and new miniseries including NEW AVENGERS: ILLUMINATI, SPIDER-MAN: REALM, WONDER MAN and X-23: TARGET X.

Once again, Marvel comfortably beat DC in market share. In dollar terms, it’s 38% to 35%. In units, it’s 43% to 39%. And that’s with DC taking most of the top 10, not to mention plenty of Marvel’s big sellers skipping a month.

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Thanks as always to Milton Griepp and ICV2 for permission to use their figures for these calculations.

3.  NEW AVENGERS
12/01  #49  -  57,715
12/02  #62  -  55,145
12/03  #75  -  57,814
12/04  #1   - 240,724
=====
12/05  #14  - 126,583  (  +0.3%)
01/06  #15  - 124,143  (  -1.9%)
02/06  #16  - 124,256  (  +0.1%)
03/06  #17  - 122,847  (  -1.1%)
04/06  #18  - 121,550  (  -1.1%)
05/06  #19  - 125,223  (  +3.0%)
06/06  #20  - 125,600  (  +0.3%)
06/06  #21  - 154,911  ( +23.4%)
07/06  #22  - 143,391  (  -7.4%)
08/06  #23  - 155,550  (  +8.5%)
09/06  ---
10/06  #24  - 136,811  ( -12.0%)
11/06  #25  - 136,504  (  -0.2%)
12/06  #26  - 122,670  ( -10.1%)
               6 mnth  ( -20.8%)
               1 year  (  -3.1%)
               2 year  ( -49.0%)
               3 year  (+112.2%)

With CIVIL WAR missing, NEW AVENGERS is Marvel’s top book of the month, although it was beaten into third place by two issues of JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA. The CIVIL WAR tie-in arc is over, and sales duly drop straight back to their previous levels.

This month also marks the second anniversary of the book’s relaunch. Some purists continue to protest that this isn’t really the Avengers, and that the upcoming MIGHTY AVENGERS sister title isn’t the Avengers either. Metaphysically, they might have a point, but the reality is that even two years after the relaunch, it’s still selling more than twice as well as the previous version of the book. No wonder Marvel see this as the way forward for the franchise.

4.  ASTONISHING X-MEN
12/04  #7  - 134,103
=====
12/05  ---
01/06  ---
02/06  #13 - 148,244  (+10.1%)
03/06  ---
04/06  #14 - 124,129  (-16.3%)
05/06  ---
06/06  #15 - 119,991  ( -3.3%)
07/06  ---
08/06  #16 - 121,897  ( +1.6%)
09/06  #17 - 124,026  ( +1.7%)
10/06  ---
11/06  #18 - 118,285  ( -4.6%)
12/06  #19 - 121,300  ( +2.5%)
              6 mnth  ( +1.1%)
              1 year  (  --- )
              2 year  ( -9.5%)

ASTONISHING X-MEN seems to have abandoned any pretence of coming out on a predictable schedule, but it still sells in huge numbers when it appears. It fluctuates more than most books, but this is comfortably within its normal range.

5.  NEW AVENGERS: ILLUMINATI
12/06  #1 (of 5) - 103,952

A very good debut for this miniseries. Sales should be interesting to watch here, since despite the title, the New Avengers aren’t actually in the book.

7,16,31.  CIVIL WAR ONE-SHOTS
12/06  Iron Man & Captain America - 100,657
12/06                  War Crimes -  84,771
12/06              Winter Soldier -  59,118

Three one-shots added to the schedule at the last minute when CIVIL WAR span off the rails. Not surprisingly, they all do rather well, but the relative placings are a little surprising. IRON MAN & CAPTAIN AMERICA: CASUALTIES OF WAR has the two lead characters, so its top ten placing isn’t unexpected. WAR CRIMES, on the other hand, is a book about the supervillains which doesn’t have big name creators attached, and doesn’t play any significant part in the wider story. It gets a very impressive top twenty placing, while WINTER SOLDIER: WINTER KILLS – a spin-off from CAPTAIN AMERICA – tails in a distant third. I would have expected the last two to be the other way around.

13. CIVIL WAR: FRONT LINE
06/06  #1 (of 11) - 145,271
06/06  #2 (of 11) - 132,858  ( -8.5%)
07/06  #3 (of 11) - 128,164  ( -3.5%)
07/06  #4 (of 11) - 111,868  (-12.7%)
08/06  #5 (of 11) - 111,435  ( -0.4%)
09/06  #6 (of 11) - 108,436  ( -2.7%)
10/06  #7 (of 11) - 106,588  ( -1.7%)
11/06  #8 (of 11) - 100,869  ( -5.4%)
12/06  #9 (of 11) -  97,948  ( -2.9%)
                     6 mnth  (-26.3%)

Fewer than 100,000 sales for once, and with the re-orders drying up, it looks like it’s staying there. Of course, nobody’s going to be losing sleep about a supporting miniseries that took nine issues to drop below six figures. (Especially considering that this chart doesn’t include sales to the UK, which would easily push it over that mark.)

14. UNCANNY X-MEN
12/01  #401 - 105,646
12/02  #416 -  88,276
12/03  #434 -  90,318
12/04  #453 -  89,952
=====
12/05  #467 -  81,282  ( -1.9%)
01/06  #468 -  79,808  ( -1.8%)
02/06  #469 -  79,039  ( -1.0%)
03/06  #470 -  79,389  ( +0.4%)
03/06  #471 -  78,286  ( -1.4%)
04/06  #472 -  79,157  ( +1.1%)
05/06  #473 -  79,335  ( +0.2%)
06/06  #474 -  78,140  ( -1.5%)
07/06  #475 - 106,037  (+35.7%)
07/06  #476 -  92,154  (-13.1%)
08/06  #477 -  89,225  ( -3.2%)
09/06  #478 -  89,850  ( +0.7%)
10/06  #479 -  89,052  ( -0.9%)
11/06  #480 -  88,584  ( -0.5%)
12/06  #481 -  85,995  ( -2.9%)
               6 mnth  (+10.1%)
               1 year  ( +5.8%)
               2 year  ( -4.4%)
               3 year  ( -4.8%)

Dropping back a little from recent months, but Ed Brubaker and Billy Tan’s run on UNCANNY is still clearly up from the inherited sales after six months. This has to be considered a success.

15. FANTASTIC FOUR
12/01  #50  - 52,471
12/02  #64  - 50,211
12/03  #508 - 50,333
12/04  #521 - 47,634
=====
12/05  #533 - 46,751  ( -2.1%)
01/05  ---
02/06  #534 - 44,573  ( -4.7%)
02/06  #535 - 43,124  ( -3.3%)
03/06  #536 - 79,680  (+84.8%)
04/06  #537 - 79,576  ( -0.1%)
05/06  ---
06/06  #538 - 92,624  (+16.4%)
07/06  ---
08/06  #539 - 89,676  ( -3.2%)
09/06  ----
10/06  #540 - 88,933  ( -0.8%)
11/06  ----
12/06  #541 - 84,895  ( -4.5%)
              6 mnth  ( -8.3%)
              1 year  (+81.6%)
              2 year  (+78.2%)
              3 year  (+68.7%)

Still caught up in CIVIL WAR, and still getting the benefits. Somewhere along the line, FANTASTIC FOUR has turned into a bimonthly.

17. WOLVERINE: ORIGINS
04/06  #1 - 182,672
05/06  #2 - 131,522  (-28.0%)
06/06  #3 - 116,058  (-11.8%)
07/06  #4 - 110,830  ( -4.5%)
08/06  #5 - 120,448  ( +8.7%)
09/06  #6 - 101,013  (-16.1%)
10/06  #7 - 103,273  ( +2.2%)
11/06  #8 -  91,585  (-11.3%)
12/06  #9 -  84,733  ( -7.5%)
             6 mnth  (-27.0%)

Now that the variant cover boosts are a thing of the past, WOLVERINE: ORIGINS is dropping far too quickly for comfort. The book has dropped by almost 20,000 in two months. That should be ringing alarm bells.

19. WOLVERINE
12/01  #171 -  72,909
12/02  #184 -  64,620
12/03  #9   -  74,659
12/04  #23  -  80,678
=====
12/05  #37  -  73,866  (-21.7%)
01/06  #38  -  73,815  ( -0.0%)
02/06  #39  -  75,285  ( +2.0%)
03/06  #40  -  77,627  ( +3.1%)
04/06  #41  -  70,965  ( -8.6%)
05/06  #42  - 112,209  (+58.1%)
06/06  #43  - 116,540  ( +3.9%)
07/06  #44  - 111,478  ( -4.3%)
08/06  #45  - 110,662  ( -0.7%)
09/06  #46  - 107,865  ( -2.5%)
10/06  #47  - 106,201  ( -1.5%)
11/06  #48  -  99,991  ( -5.8%)
12/06  #49  -  78,807  (-21.2%)
               6 mnth  (-32.4%)
               1 year  ( -6.7%)
               2 year  ( -2.4%)
               3 year  ( +5.6%)

Despite appearances, this is actually a surprisingly good number. Issue #49 is a fill-in Christmas story by Rob Williams and Laurence Campbell, killing time for a month between the CIVIL WAR arc and the arrival of Jeph Loeb and Simone Bianchi in January. Obviously it’s going to go down – the interesting thing is that it still did better than the pre-CIVIL WAR arc, which suggests this book has some momentum behind it.

20. X-MEN
12/01  #121 - 112,227
12/02  #135 -  96,154
12/03  #150 - 110,591
12/04  #165 -  86,633
======
12/05  #179 -  77,189  ( +1.3%)
12/05  #180 -  75,559  ( -2.1%)
01/06  #181 -  74,094  ( -1.9%)
02/06  #182 -  78,653  ( +6.2%)
02/06  #183 -  79,477  ( +1.0%)
03/06  #184 -  79,480  ( +0.0%)
04/06  #185 -  78,815  ( -0.8%)
05/06  #186 -  79,536  ( +0.9%)
06/06  #187 -  77,918  ( -2.0%)
07/06  #188 -  95,487  (+22.5%)
07/06  #189 -  85,157  (-10.8%)
08/06  #190 -  83,436  ( -2.0%)
09/06  #191 -  82,048  ( -1.7%)
10/06  #192 -  81,816  ( -0.3%)
11/06  #193 -  80,102  ( -2.1%)
12/06  #194 -  78,114  ( -2.5%)
               6 mnth  ( +0.3%)
               1 year  ( +1.2%)
               2 year  ( -9.8%)
               3 year  (-29.4%)

Unlike UNCANNY, this book is back where it was before Carey and Bachalo took over. But it’s not doing badly – X-MEN continues to sell in its normal range. The previous creative team levelled out here in their closing months, so it’ll be interesting to see where the book goes now. There’s a noticeable, but slow, decline going on here.

22. ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN
12/01  #16  -  80,875
12/02  #32  -  92,160
12/03  #50  - 109,819
12/04  #70  -  88,960
======
12/05  #87  -  74,537  ( -3.0%)
12/05  #88  -  74,213  ( -0.4%)
01/06  #89  -  71,935  ( -3.1%)
02/06  #90  -  71,470  ( -0.6%)
03/06  #91  -  74,028  ( +3.6%)
03/06  #92  -  72,269  ( -2.4%)
04/06  #93  -  72,831  ( +0.8%)
05/06  #94  -  74,051  ( +1.7%)
05/06  #95  -  73,564  ( -0.7%)
06/06  #96  -  73,472  ( -0.1%)
07/06  #97  -  76,612  ( +4.3%)
08/06  #98  -  77,304  ( +0.9%)
08/06  #99  -  76,075  ( -1.6%)
09/06  #100 - 119,194  (+56.7%)
10/06  #101 -  78,963  (-33.8%)
11/06  #102 -  77,121  ( -2.3%)
12/06  #103 -  76,251  ( -1.1%)
               6 mnth  ( +3.8%)
               1 year  ( +2.3%)
               2 year  (-14.3%)
               3 year  (-30.6%)

The Ultimate Clone Saga seems to have rekindled interest in this book and turned around its decline from earlier in the year. It’s an unexpected result.

24. IRON MAN
12/01  #49 - 35,588
12/02  #62 - 33,492
12/03  #75 - 31,889
12/04  #2  - 53,292
======
12/05  ---
01/06  #5  - 45,243  (  -6.5%)
02/06  ---
03/06  #6  - 40,264  ( -11.0%)
04/06  #7  - 49,404  ( +22.7%)
05/06  #8  - 38,860  ( -21.3%)
06/06  #9  - 37,650  (  -3.1%)
07/06  #10 - 38,102  (  +1.2%)
08/06  #11 - 37,279  (  -2.2%)
09/06  #12 - 36,278  (  -2.7%)
10/06  ---
11/06  #13 - 76,800  (+111.7%)
12/06  #14 - 73,388  (  -4.4%)
             6 mnth  ( +94.9%)
             1 year  ( +62.2%)
             2 year  ( +37.7%)
             3 year  (+130.1%)

Another CIVIL WAR tie-in, benefitting from a massive boost.

25. ULTIMATE POWER
10/06  #1 (of 9) - 102,687
11/06  #2 (of 9) -  76,654  (-25.4%)
12/06  #3 (of 9) -  70,148  ( -8.5%)

Levelling out, but the series certainly isn’t doing “event” numbers. That’s not so much of a concern when you look at any individual book, but when you consider the sales on this and ULTIMATE VISION, not to mention the glaring sales declines on ULTIMATE X-MEN and ULTIMATE FANTASTIC FOUR, you have to wonder whether the Ultimate imprint is in need of attention. At the very least, it’s losing its elite lustre.

Issue #2 picks up re-orders of 1,901 to chart at 297. As always, they’re added into the numbers above.

26. ULTIMATE X-MEN
12/01  #13 - 100,442
12/02  #26 -  87,893
12/03  #40 - 104,443
12/04  ---
=====
12/05  ---
01/06  #66 -  73,720  ( -0.7%)
02/06  #67 -  72,700  ( -1.4%)
03/06  #68 -  72,765  ( +0.1%)
04/06  #69 -  73,188  ( +0.6%)
05/06  #70 -  72,235  ( -1.3%)
06/06  #71 -  71,314  ( -1.3%)
07/06  #72 -  70,593  ( -1.0%)
08/06  #73 -  70,153  ( -0.6%)
09/06  #74 -  68,874  ( -1.8%)
10/06  #75 -  73,837  ( +7.2%)
11/06  #76 -  69,054  ( -6.5%)
12/06  #77 -  67,338  ( -2.5%)
              6 mnth  ( -5.6%)
              1 year  ( -8.7%)
              2 year  (  --- )
              3 year  (-35.5%)

See what I mean? Despite the blip from issue #75 in October, the book seems to be in long term decline.

32.  X-23: TARGET X
12/06  #1 (of 6) - 58,125

A comfortable 20,000 higher than the notional parent title NEW X-MEN, showing the continuing popularity of X-23. This is a sequel to her origin miniseries from the first half of 2005, which debuted with a staggering 96K and finished off at 52K. This is a little more subdued, but that’s sequels for you. It’s still a number to be very happy with.

34. ULTIMATE FANTASTIC FOUR
12/03  #1  - 173,441
12/04  #14 -  77,931
=====
12/05  #26 -  69,689  ( -0.5%)
01/06  ---
02/06  #27 -  67,922  ( -2.5%)
03/06  #28 -  67,480  ( -0.7%)
04/06  #29 -  67,554  ( +0.1%)
05/06  #30 - 103,837  (+53.7%)
06/06  ---
07/06  #31 -  84,460  (-18.7%)
08/06  #32 -  80,730  ( -4.4%)
08/06  #33 -  65,191  (-19.2%)
09/06  #34 -  63,447  ( -2.7%)
10/06  #35 -  61,270  ( -3.4%)
11/06  #36 -  57,779  ( -5.7%)
12/06  #37 -  55,047  ( -4.7%)
              6 mnth  (-34.8%)
              1 year  (-21.0%)
              2 year  (-29.4%)
              3 year  (-68.3%)

Deeply worrying numbers. The book has been bleeding readers since Mike Carey and Pasqual Ferry took over with issue #33, and the drops have actually been larger in recent months. Apparently the audience of this title doesn’t want to read a six-part storyline featuring a thinly disguised version of the Forever People. Something’s clearly going wrong, anyway.

36. BLACK PANTHER
12/01  #39 - 19,576
12/02  #52 - 18,393
=====
12/05  #11 - 29,327  (  -8.3%)
01/06  #12 - 27,933  (  -4.7%)
02/06  #13 - 26,054  (  -6.7%)
03/06  #14 - 28,809  ( +10.6%)
04/06  #15 - 28,361  (  -1.6%)
05/06  #16 - 28,091  (  -1.0%)
06/06  #17 - 27,993  (  -0.3%)
07/06  #18 - 69,912  (+149.7%)
08/06  #19 - 28,372  ( -59.4%)
09/06  #20 - 26,585  (  -6.3%)
10/06  #21 - 34,257  ( +28.9%)
11/06  #22 - 47,556  ( +38.8%)
12/06  #23 - 54,762  ( +15.2%)
             6 mnth  ( +95.6%)
             1 year  ( +86.7%)

Leaping up the charts as people notice that the CIVIL WAR crossover arc actually appears to be important to the plot. Well, that’s how it’s presented in this book, anyway – it seems to be pretty much irrelevant in CIVIL WAR itself. Still, I’m sure they’ll take what they can get. Be warned that BLACK PANTHER has established a track record of getting large boosts from crossovers, and crashing straight back afterwards. (See issue #18 for an example.)

Issue #22 picks up re-orders of 6,288.

38. ULTIMATE VISION
11/06  #0 (of 5) - 40,004
12/06  #1 (of 5) - 53,069  (+32.7%)

The first issue of the miniseries proper – issue #0 was a reprint of some back-up strips. It’s a pretty good number for an Ultimate Vision miniseries, but as noted above, you have to wonder whether the Ultimate imprint can maintain its brand image while producing mid-table miniseries like this.

39. ONSLAUGHT REBORN
11/06  #1 (of 5) - 82,642
12/06  #2 (of 5) - 52,907  (-36.0%)

Issue #1 picks up re-orders of 3,540. This is pretty much standard for a Rob Liefeld project at Marvel – high numbers for issue #1, and then it drops like a stone.

40. SENSATIONAL SPIDER-MAN
12/04  #9  - 64,461
======
12/05  #21 - 76,763  ( +4.8%)
01/06  #22 - 74,923  ( -2.4%)
02/06  #23 - 59,051  (-21.2%)
03/06  #24 - 53,910  ( -8.7%)
04/06  #25 - 51,992  ( -3.6%)
05/06  #26 - 52,496  ( +1.0%)
06/06  #27 - 50,721  ( -3.4%)
07/06  #28 - 58,532  (+15.4%)
08/06  #29 - 55,420  ( -5.3%)
09/06  #30 - 54,467  ( -1.7%)
10/06  #31 - 51,587  ( -5.3%)
11/06  #32 - 50,222  ( -2.6%)
12/06  #33 - 48,443  ( -3.5%)
             6 mnth  ( -4.5%)
             1 year  (-36.9%)
             2 year  (-24.8%)

In clear decline, as is FRIENDLY NEIGHBORHOOD SPIDER-MAN. After a very short initial burst of interest, the unmasking of Spider-Man has done absolutely nothing to help sales on his titles. True, AMAZING is doing fine, but it’s running a lengthy CIVIL WAR tie-in arc which would have boosted sales for that reason anyway. Look at the sales on this book, and FRIENDLY, and compare the sales a year ago when they were running the “Other” crossover. There’s no way a stunt as well-publicised as this should be doing that much worse than a workaday crossover. This is not working; it’s not drawing money. And it’s going to be very hard to undo.

At this stage, “Back in Black” really needs to deliver a sales boost, because when you look beneath the CIVIL WAR boost on AMAZING, the Spider-Man line is actually looking a little sickly.

41. DAREDEVIL
12/01  #28 - 49,733
12/02  #40 - 54,292
12/03  #55 - 53,660
12/04  #68 - 50,491
=====
12/05  #80 - 43,309  ( -2.1%)
01/06  #81 - 44,252  ( +2.2%)
02/06  #82 - 53,058  (+19.9%)
03/06  #83 - 46,804  (-11.8%)
04/06  #84 - 47,123  ( +0.7%)
05/06  #85 - 47,899  ( +1.6%)
06/06  #86 - 48,280  ( +0.8%)
07/06  #87 - 51,989  ( +7.7%)
08/06  #88 - 50,554  ( -2.8%)
09/06  #89 - 55,481  ( +9.7%)
10/06  #90 - 50,500  ( -9.0%)
11/06  #91 - 49,335  ( -2.3%)
12/06  #92 - 48,035  ( -2.6%)
             6 mnth  ( -0.5%)
             1 year  (+10.9%)
             2 year  ( -4.9%)
             3 year  (-10.5%)

Still within the book’s normal range.

42. INCREDIBLE HULK
12/01  #35  - 34,446
12/02  #48  - 48,668
12/03  #64  - 51,960
12/04  ---
=====
12/05  #90  - 36,924  (  -6.8%)
01/06  #91  - 35,980  (  -2.6%)
02/06  #92  - 53,661  ( +49.1%)
03/06  #93  - 47,437  ( -11.6%)
04/06  #94  - 47,966  (  +1.1%)
05/06  #95  - 49,089  (  +2.3%)
06/06  ---
07/06  #96  - 49,209  (  +0.2%)
08/06  #97  - 48,893  (  -0.6%)
09/06  #98  - 52,987  (  +8.4%)
10/06  #99  - 47,878  (  -9.6%)
11/06  #100 - 84,169  ( +75.8%)
12/06  #101 - 47,927  ( -43.1%)
              6 mnth  (  -2.6%)
              1 year  ( +29.8%)
              2 year  (   --- )
              3 year  (  -7.8%)

Straight back to normal after November’s anniversary issue. The “Planet Hulk” story continues to sell consistently at around 48K, though, so Marvel can be happy with that.

43. X-MEN: PHOENIX - WARSONG
09/06  #1 (of 5) - 73,503
10/06  #2 (of 5) - 54,727  (-25.5%)
11/06  #3 (of 5) - 50,222  ( -8.2%)
12/06  #4 (of 5) - 46,942  ( -6.5%)

Fairly standard miniseries numbers.

44. SPIDER-MAN: REIGN
12/06  #1 (of 4) - 46,827

An out-of-continuity miniseries by Kaare Andrews. Not a bad start for that sort of thing.

46. GHOST RIDER
12/05  #4 (of 6) - 59,678  ( -5.1%)
01/06  #5 (of 6) - 56,958  ( -4.6%)
02/06  #6 (of 6) - 55,802  ( -2.0%)
03/06  ---
04/06  ---
05/06  ---
06/06  ---
07/06         #1 - 98,826  (+77.1%)
08/06         #2 - 61,793  (-37.5%)
09/06         #3 - 54,029  (-12.6%)
10/06         #4 - 50,925  ( -5.7%)
11/06         #5 - 47,929  ( -5.9%)
12/06         #6 - 46,673  ( -2.6%)
                   6 mnth  (  --- )
                   1 year  (-21.8%)

Levelling out, and no doubt Marvel could live quite happily with the book settling down in this area of the chart.

47. NEWUNIVERSAL
12/06  #1 - 43,163

Warren Ellis and Salvador Larroca revive the New Universe, of all things. (Purists may wish to imagine the title in lower case.) Obviously there’s very little built-in audience for these characters, so this audience largely reflects the drawing power of the creators. It’s a solid start for an unlikely-sounding project.

48. FRIENDLY NEIGHBORHOOD SPIDER-MAN
12/05  #3  - 81,309  ( -2.0%)
01/06  #4  - 78,672  ( -3.2%)
02/06  ---
03/06  #5  - 59,900  (-23.9%)
03/06  #6  - 58,853  ( -1.7%)
04/06  #7  - 55,381  ( -5.9%)
05/06  #8  - 53,910  ( -2.7%)
06/06  #9  - 50,177  ( -6.9%)
07/06  #10 - 48,902  ( -2.5%)
08/06  #11 - 50,995  ( +4.3%)
09/06  #12 - 48,063  ( -5.7%)
10/06  #13 - 46,293  ( -3.7%)
11/06  #14 - 43,476  ( -6.1%)
12/06  #15 - 42,147  ( -3.1%)
             6 mnth  (-16.0%)
             1 year  (-48.2%)

See the comments for SENSATIONAL SPIDER-MAN above.

49. X-FACTOR
12/05  #1  - 64,861
12/05  #2  - 52,705  (-18.7%)
01/06  ---
02/06  #3  - 48,307  ( -8.3%)
03/06  #4  - 48,183  ( -0.3%)
03/06  #5  - 46,490  ( -3.5%)
04/06  #6  - 45,220  ( -2.7%)
05/06  #7  - 44,315  ( -2.0%)
06/06  #8  - 76,150  (+71.8%)
07/06  #9  - 68,799  ( -9.7%)
08/06  #10 - 44,603  (-35.2%)
09/06  #11 - 43,431  ( -2.6%)
10/06  #12 - 42,909  ( -1.2%)
11/06  #13 - 42,844  ( -0.2%)
12/06  #14 - 40,208  ( -6.2%)
             6 mnth  (-47.2%)
             1 year  (-38.1%)

An unusually large drop for a book that’s generally fairly stable. The six month comparison is with a CIVIL WAR tie-in issue, so it’s not really representative. (Given the length of some CIVIL WAR crossover arcs, I’ll be saying that a lot over the next few months.) It’s also the book’s first anniversary, and it’s still over 40K. That would count as a successful mid-table launch.

51. ANNIHILATION
08/06  #1 (of 6) - 61,006
09/06  #2 (of 6) - 44,537  (-27.0%)
10/06  #3 (of 6) - 41,292  ( -7.3%)
11/06  #4 (of 6) - 39,645  ( -4.0%)
12/06  #5 (of 6) - 38,237  ( -3.6%)

Standard miniseries decline. The book is drifting off the radar a bit, but still doing very well considering the cast. Marvel might have hoped for slightly higher numbers at this stage, considering that they’re attempting to launch a NOVA ongoing title off the back of this event.

52. NEW X-MEN
12/04  #7  - 43,024
=====
12/05  #21 - 43,473  (-26.9%)
01/06  #22 - 42,923  ( -1.3%)
02/06  #23 - 41,463  ( -3.4%)
03/06  #24 - 42,044  ( +1.4%)
04/06  #25 - 40,176  ( -4.4%)
05/06  #26 - 40,073  ( -0.3%)
06/06  #27 - 39,785  ( -0.7%)
07/06  #28 - 39,771  ( -0.0%)
08/06  #29 - 40,303  ( +1.3%)
09/06  #30 - 39,658  ( -1.6%)
10/06  #31 - 39,175  ( -1.2%)
11/06  #32 - 37,919  ( -3.2%)
12/06  #33 - 38,076  ( +0.4%)
             6 mnth  ( -4.3%)
             1 year  (-12.4%)
             2 year  (-11.5%)

Hovering comfortably in its normal range.

54. FANTASTIC FOUR: THE END
11/06  #1 (of 6) - 54,213
11/06  #2 (of 6) - 38,928  (-28.2%)
12/06  #3 (of 6) - 36,744  ( -5.6%)

Again, fairly standard miniseries drops.

59. MS MARVEL
03/06  #1  - 73,407
04/06  #2  - 46,204  (-37.1%)
05/06  #3  - 43,048  ( -6.8%)
06/06  #4  - 40,627  ( -5.6%)
07/06  #5  - 38,874  ( -4.3%)
08/06  #6  - 68,330  (+75.8%)
09/06  #7  - 64,973  ( -4.9%)
10/06  #8  - 62,893  ( -3.2%)
11/06  #9  - 37,881  (-39.8%)
12/06  #10 - 34,350  ( -9.3%)
             6 mnth  (-15.5%)

A worryingly large drop at this stage. Perhaps the character’s inclusion in MIGHTY AVENGERS will help her.

62. IMMORTAL IRON FIST
11/06  #1 - 40,696
12/06  #2 - 33,219  (-18.4%)

Issue #1 picks up re-orders of 2,117, and there’s a Director’s Cut edition still to go. The second issue drop isn’t bad either, considering the re-orders. These aren’t fantastic numbers, but given that it’s Iron Fist, they could have been a lot worse.

63. PUNISHER  [Max]
12/01  #7  - 59,606
12/02  #20 - 43,514
12/03  #37 - 38,561
12/04  #15 - 40,357
=====
12/05  #28 - 35,535  ( -1.5%)
01/06  #29 - 34,708  ( -2.3%)
02/06  #30 - 34,293  ( -1.2%)
03/06  #31 - 34,505  ( +0.6%)
04/06  #32 - 34,076  ( -1.2%)
05/06  #33 - 34,480  ( +1.2%)
06/06  #34 - 34,161  ( -0.9%)
07/06  #35 - 34,116  ( -0.1%)
08/06  #36 - 34,227  ( +0.3%)
09/06  #37 - 34,250  ( +0.1%)
09/06  #38 - 33,839  ( -1.2%)
10/06  #39 - 33,962  ( +0.4%)
11/06  #40 - 33,579  ( -1.1%)
11/06  #41 - 33,164  ( -1.2%)
12/06  #42 - 33,003  ( -0.5%)
             6 mnth  ( -3.4%)
             1 year  ( -7.1%)
             2 year  (-18.2%)
             3 year  (-14.4%)

Rock solid.

66. HEROES FOR HIRE
08/06  #1 - 84,006
09/06  #2 - 66,949  (-20.3%)
10/06  #3 - 60,770  ( -9.2%)
11/06  #4 - 38,070  (-37.4%)
12/06  #5 - 31,318  (-17.7%)

Please remain calm and make your way to the lifeboats in an orderly fashion.

A recap: this series is a spin-off from the DAUGHTERS OF THE DRAGON miniseries, which sold abysmally. The first three issues were CIVIL WAR crossovers, though, so they sold rather well. Issue #4 saw a massive drop which was only to be expected in the circumstances. But now issue #5 sees another huge drop month on month, and that suggests retailers are desperately slashing orders in the hope of finding a quantity that they can actually shift.

At this stage in a book’s life, an 18% drop between issues is truly horrific. This is an extremely bad sign.

67. NEW EXCALIBUR
12/05  #2  - 48,816  (-16.3%)
01/06  #3  - 47,196  ( -3.3%)
02/06  #4  - 45,071  ( -4.5%)
03/06  #5  - 43,523  ( -3.4%)
04/06  #6  - 40,687  ( -6.5%)
05/06  #7  - 38,744  ( -4.8%)
06/06  #8  - 37,428  ( -3.4%)
07/06  #9  - 36,466  ( -2.6%)
08/06  #10 - 36,108  ( -1.0%)
09/06  #11 - 34,104  ( -5.6%)
10/06  #12 - 33,082  ( -3.0%)
11/06  #13 - 32,173  ( -2.7%)
12/06  #14 - 31,318  ( -2.7%)
             6 mnth  (-16.3%)
             1 year  (-35.8%)

Still in decline as it celebrates its first year. Obviously, months of fill-in stories, forced by the ill health of Chris Claremont, have made it difficult for the book to get traction.

68,74. WHAT IF?
11/06        Enemy of the State - 31,211
11/06                 The Other - 31,060
11/06     Avengers Disassembled - 30,635
12/06  X-Men: Age of Apocalypse - 31,172
12/06     X-Men: Deadly Genesis - 29,902

All this year’s one-shots end up at about the same level.

69. ANITA BLAKE, VAMPIRE HUNTER  [DBPro]
10/06  #1 (of 12) - 46,524
11/06  #2 (of 12) - 35,528  (-23.6%)
12/06  #3 (of 12) - 30,610  (-13.8%)

Still piling on the re-orders. Issue #1 gets another 4,056, while issue #2 adds 7,497 extra orders. Taking that into account, the number for issue #3 is great – it’s actually a climb from issue #2’s first month sales. This book is a hit, especially when you consider that the direct market serial format has traditionally been a weak area for DBPro.

73. EXILES ANNUAL
12/06  #1 - 30,033

Exactly where EXILES itself usually is. And where is EXILES, you ask? Stick around…

76. X-MEN: FIRST CLASS
09/06  #1 of 8 - 39,859
10/06  #2 of 8 - 33,688  (-15.5%)
11/06  #3 of 8 - 30,805  ( -8.6%)
12/06  #4 of 8 - 28,455  ( -7.6%)

Perfectly good miniseries numbers.

77. CABLE & DEADPOOL
12/04  #10 - 26,911
=====
12/05  #23 - 23,296  (  -1.9%)
01/06  #24 - 23,542  (  +1.1%)
02/06  #25 - 22,918  (  -2.7%)
03/06  #26 - 25,584  ( +11.6%)
04/06  #27 - 26,153  (  +2.2%)
05/06  #28 - 25,665  (  -1.9%)
06/06  #29 - 25,368  (  -1.2%)
07/06  #30 - 59,333  (+133.9%)
08/06  #31 - 59,804  (  +0.8%)
09/06  #32 - 60,177  (  +0.6%)
10/06  #33 - 30,741  ( -48.9%)
11/06  #34 - 29,144  (  -5.2%)
12/06  #35 - 27,785  (  -4.7%)
             6 mnth  (  +9.5%)
             1 year  ( +19.3%)
             2 year  (  +3.2%)


78. THUNDERBOLTS
12/01  #59  - 30,781
12/02  #75  - 27,233
12/04  #3   - 32,720
=====
12/05  #16  - 25,084  (  -0.6%)
01/06  #17  - 23,417  (  -6.7%)
02/06  #18  - 23,735  (  +1.4%)
03/06  #100 - 26,798  ( +12.9%)
04/06  #101 - 24,170  (  -9.8%)
05/06  #102 - 23,741  (  -1.8%)
06/06  #103 - 60,823  (+156.2%)
07/06  #104 - 63,850  (  +5.0%)
08/06  #105 - 61,467  (  -3.7%)
09/06  #106 - 31,527  ( -48.7%)
10/06  #107 - 29,624  (  -6.0%)
11/06  #108 - 27,890  (  -5.9%)
12/06  #109 - 27,300  (  -2.1%)
              6 mnth  ( -55.1%)
              1 year  (  +8.8%)
              2 year  ( -16.6%)

The two Fabian Nicieza titles are still holding on to some of their CIVIL WAR sales boosts, although they’re wearing off. THUNDERBOLTS gets revamped next month, and is virtually guaranteed to leap up the charts as a result.

80. DOCTOR STRANGE: OATH
10/06  #1 (of 5) - 40,280
11/06  #2 (of 5) - 29,824  (-26.0%)
12/06  #3 (of 5) - 27,046  ( -9.3%)

Again, pretty standard miniseries drops. This is fine for a Dr Strange book.

82,85. AVENGERS: EARTH'S MIGHTIEST HEROES II
11/06  #1 of 8 - 35,032
11/06  #2 of 8 - 31,871  ( -9.0%)
12/06  #3 of 8 - 27,015  (-15.2%)
12/06  #4 of 8 - 25,622  ( -5.2%)

This is an oddity of retailer ordering patterns: they tend to cut orders more aggressive between months. So the book gets its big drop on issue #3, not issue #2. That quirk aside, this is pretty standard.

84. AMAZING SPIDER-GIRL
12/01  #41  - 23,573
12/02  #54  - 24,389
12/03  #67  - 21,403
12/04  #81  - 20,419
=====
12/05  #93  - 17,057  (  -3.1%)
01/06  #94  - 17,148  (  +0.5%)
02/06  #95  - 16,778  (  -2.2%)
03/06  #96  - 16,739  (  -0.2%)
04/06  #97  - 17,508  (  +4.6%)
05/06  #98  - 17,738  (  +1.3%)
06/06  #99  - 17,915  (  +1.0%)
07/06  #100 - 22,691  ( +26.7%)
08/06  ----
09/06  ----
10/06  #1   - 47,304  (+108.5%)
11/06  #2   - 28,135  ( -40.5%)
12/06  #3   - 25,645  (  -8.9%)
              6 mnth  ( +43.1%)
              1 year  ( +50.3%)
              2 year  ( +25.6%)
              3 year  ( +19.8%)

Still searching for its level, but it remains comfortably above pre-relaunch numbers.

88. BULLET POINTS
11/06  #1 (of 5) - 33,503
12/06  #2 (of 5) - 25,184  (-24.8%)

A fairly normal second issue drop for a miniseries.

91. SHE-HULK
12/04  #10 - 23,848
=====
12/05  #3  - 29,428  (  -6.9%)
01/06  #4  - 28,214  (  -4.1%)
02/06  #5  - 27,183  (  -3.7%)
03/06  #6  - 26,631  (  -2.0%)
04/06  ---
05/06  #7  - 26,561  (  -0.3%)
05/06  #8  - 58,053  (+118.6%)
06/06  ---
07/06  #9  - 29,902  ( -48.5%)
08/06  #10 - 28,555  (  -4.5%)
08/06  #11 - 27,393  (  -4.1%)
09/06  #12 - 26,448  (  -3.4%)
10/06  ---
11/06  #13 - 26,267  (  -0.7%)
12/06  #14 - 24,552  (  -6.5%)
             6 mnth  ( -17.9%)
             1 year  ( -16.6%)
             2 year  (  +3.0%)

A slightly unusual drop; we’ll have to see whether it’s starting a trend.

108. WONDER MAN
12/06  #1 (of 5) - 22,282

A decidedly lacklustre debut. Well, it’s Wonder Man – they couldn’t really have expected much better.

109. NEXTWAVE: AGENTS OF H.A.T.E.
01/06   #1 - 41,041
02/06  ---
03/06   #2 - 29,911  (-27.1%)
03/06   #3 - 27,126  ( -9.3%)
04/06   #4 - 26,728  ( -1.5%)
05/06   #5 - 30,818  (+15.3%)
06/06   #6 - 24,626  (-20.1%)
07/06  ---
08/06   #7 - 24,245  ( -1.5%)
09/06   #8 - 23,059  ( -4.9%)
10/06   #9 - 22,357  ( -3.0%)
11/06  #10 - 21,644  ( -3.2%)
12/06  #11 - 22,259  ( +2.8%)
             6 mnth  ( -9.6%)

Axed with issue #12. There’s no obvious reason for the 2.8% gain, unless possibly some retailers looked at the parody cover and figured it was a CIVIL WAR parody issue. (It isn’t.)

113. BEYOND!
07/06  #1 (of 6) - 35,728
08/06  #2 (of 6) - 28,727  (-19.6%)
09/06  #3 (of 6) - 25,096  (-12.6%)
10/06  #4 (of 6) - 23,792  ( -5.2%)
11/06  #5 (of 6) - 22,795  ( -4.2%)
12/06  #6 (of 6) - 21,528  ( -5.6%)

Considering the C-list cast, BEYOND! finishes up with a respectable number.

114. MARVEL 1602: FANTASTICK FOUR
09/06  #1 (of 5) - 31,784
10/06  #2 (of 5) - 26,702  (-16.0%)
11/06  #3 (of 5) - 23,295  (-12.8%)
12/06  #4 (of 5) - 21,389  ( -8.2%)

Quietly disappearing from view. This surely has to be the last we see of the MARVEL 1602 franchise for the foreseeable future.

119. BLADE
09/06  #1 - 37,394
10/06  #2 - 27,170  (-27.3%)
11/06  #3 - 23,144  (-14.8%)
12/06  #4 - 21,043  ( -9.1%)

Levelling out, but the numbers are very unhealthy. (Insert your own joke about the walking dead here.)

121. EXILES
12/01  #7  - 40,075
12/02  #20 - 36,796
12/03  #38 - 38,542
12/04  #55 - 33,744
=====
12/05  #74 - 33,881  ( -0.4%)
01/06  #75 - 33,485  ( -1.2%)
01/06  #76 - 32,843  ( -1.9%)
02/06  #77 - 32,998  ( +0.5%)
03/06  #78 - 33,506  ( +1.5%)
04/06  #79 - 34,119  ( +1.8%)
05/06  #80 - 34,039  ( -0.2%)
05/06  #81 - 33,908  ( -0.4%)
06/06  #82 - 33,342  ( -1.7%)
06/06  #83 - 33,143  ( -0.6%)
07/06  #84 - 32,866  ( -0.8%)
08/06  #85 - 33,978  ( +3.4%)
09/06  #86 - 33,080  ( -2.6%)
10/06  #87 - 31,946  ( -3.4%)
11/06  #88 - 30,928  ( -3.2%)
12/06  #89 - 20,727  (-33.0%)
             6 mnth  (-37.5%)
             1 year  (-38.8%)
             2 year  (-38.6%)
             3 year  (-46.2%)

This is the result of a distribution screw-up. Sales are only counted towards the chart if they actually reach stores within the month. EXILES #89 was meant to ship in the last week of the month, and it did – unless you live on the west coast, in which case Diamond lost your shipping container, and didn’t get the books out until January. The remainder of the sales will almost certainly show up on next month’s chart.

123. IRREDEEMABLE ANT-MAN
10/06  #1 - 29,499
11/06  #2 - 23,191  (-21.4%)
12/06  #3 - 19,580  (-15.6%)

The lowest selling Marvel Universe title that hasn’t been cancelled yet – but with numbers like these, it’s only a matter of time.

124,129. AVENGERS NEXT
11/06  #1 (of 5) - 24,521
11/06  #2 (of 5) - 20,842  (-15.0%)
12/06  #3 (of 5) - 19,496  ( -6.5%)
12/06  #4 (of 5) - 18,157  ( -6.9%)

The SPIDER-GIRL sister title is holding up decently.

126. WHITE TIGER
11/06  #1 (of 6) - 24,663
12/06  #2 (of 6) - 19,042  (-22.3%)

Not a spectacular number, but no worse than should reasonably have been expected. It’s an unfamiliar creative team and a minor character, after all.

131. OFFICIAL HANDBOOK OF THE MARVEL UNIVERSE
12/04   Golden Age - 17,356
=====
12/05    Ultimates - 20,795  ( -9.5%)
01/06   #1 (of 12) - 23,423  (+12.6%)
02/06   #2 (of 12) - 21,828  ( -6.8%)
03/06   #3 (of 12) - 21,681  ( -0.7%)
04/06   #4 (of 12) - 21,531  ( -0.7%)
05/06   #5 (of 12) - 21,331  ( -0.9%)
06/06   #6 (of 12) - 20,731  ( -2.8%)
07/06   #7 (of 12) - 20,124  ( -2.9%)
08/06   #8 (of 12) - 19,926  ( -1.0%)
09/06   #9 (of 12) - 18,966  ( -4.8%)
10/06  #10 (of 12) - 18,767  ( -1.0%)
11/06  #11 (of 12) - 18,285  ( -2.6%)
12/06  #12 (of 12) - 17,826  ( -2.5%)
                     6 mnth  (-14.0%)
                     1 year  (-14.3%)
                     2 year  ( +2.7%)

The A TO Z series wraps up, having held its audience surprisingly well. The title continues into 2007 with a mixture of updates and theme issues.

132. CRIMINAL  [Icon]
10/06  #1 - 25,978
11/06  #2 - 21,115  (-18.7%)
12/06  #3 - 17,702  (-16.2%)

Ah, now that’s a rather steep drop for the third issue. A bit disappointing.

134. UNION JACK
09/06  #1 (of 4) - 25,333
10/06  #2 (of 4) - 20,871  (-17.6%)
11/06  #3 (of 4) - 18,841  ( -9.7%)
12/06  #4 (of 4) - 17,495  ( -7.1%)

Not spectacular, but considering that it’s Union Jack with no big name creators attached, it’s actually a respectable performance.

144. MARVEL HOLIDAY SPECIAL
12/06  Marvel Holiday Special - 15,093

The annual Christmas special, featuring filler galore. Last year it did 14,341.

145. ZOMBIE  [Max]
09/06  #1 (of 4) - 26,621
10/06  #2 (of 4) - 19,772  (-25.7%)
11/06  #3 (of 4) - 16,605  (-16.0%)
12/06  #4 (of 4) - 14,855  (-10.5%)

147. HELLSTORM, SON OF SATAN  [Max]
10/06  #1 (of 5) - 27,045
11/06  #2 (of 5) - 17,398  (-35.7%)
12/06  #3 (of 5) - 14,593  (-16.1%)

Two miniseries from the recent Max imprint push, both politely fading into synchronised obscurity.

158. AGENTS OF ATLAS
08/06  #1 (of 6) - 19,292
09/06  #2 (of 6) - 14,416  (-25.3%)
10/06  #3 (of 6) - 12,929  (-10.3%)
11/06  #4 (of 6) - 12,388  ( -4.2%)
12/06  #5 (of 6) - 11,853  ( -4.3%)

Well received, but not many people actually bought it.

191. MARVEL ADVENTURES AVENGERS  [All ages]
05/06  #1 - 13,891
06/06  #2 -  9,359  (-32.7%)
07/06  #3 -  9,006  ( -3.8%)
08/06  #4 -  8,610  ( -4.4%)
09/06  #5 -  7,994  ( -7.2%)
10/06  #6 -  7,879  ( -1.4%)
11/06  #7 -  7,642  ( -3.0%)
12/06  #8 -  7,512  ( -1.7%)

As I’ve said many times before, the all ages books aren’t dependent on direct market sales, and these numbers of academic interest only.

198. MAGICIAN: APPRENTICE  [DBPro]
10/06  #1-2       - 1,892
11/06  #3 (of 12) - 4,595  (+142.9%)
12/06  #4 (of 12) - 7,266  ( +58.1%)

This, on the other hand, is rather more attention-grabbing. Last month I said that I wouldn’t bother listing the DBPro books unless they were selling well enough to make the Top 300 consistently. Well, if they keep gaining sales at this rate, that’s not going to be a concern. Of course, this book is still doing most of its business elsewhere, but hooking up with Marvel does seem to be boosting DBPro’s direct market sales in leaps and bounds.

210. MARVEL ADVENTURES SPIDER-MAN  [All ages]
12/05  #10 - 6,391  ( -3.7%)
01/06  #11 - 6,107  ( -4.4%)
02/06  #12 - 6,087  ( -0.3%)
03/06  #13 - 5,899  ( -3.1%)
04/06  #14 - 5,970  ( +1.2%)
05/06  #15 - 6,165  ( +3.3%)
06/06  #16 - 6,114  ( -0.8%)
07/06  #17 - 6,133  ( +0.3%)
08/06  #18 - 6,220  ( +1.4%)
09/06  #19 - 6,057  ( -2.6%)
10/06  #20 - 6,131  ( +1.2%)
11/06  #21 - 6,529  ( +6.5%)
12/06  #22 - 6,396  ( -2.0%)
            6 mnth  ( +4.6%)
            1 year  ( +0.1%)

211. SPIDER-MAN & POWER PACK  [All ages]
11/06  #1 (of 4) - 7,897
12/06  #2 (of 4) - 6,350  (-19.6%)

213. SPIDER-MAN LOVES MARY JANE  [All ages]
12/05  #1  - 11,171
01/06  #2  -  8,590  (-23.1%)
02/06  #3  -  7,648  (-11.0%)
03/06  #4  -  7,672  ( +0.3%)
04/06  #5  -  7,165  ( -6.6%)
05/06  #6  -  7,069  ( -1.3%)
06/06  #7  -  6,834  ( -3.3%)
07/06  #8  -  6,769  ( -1.0%)
08/06  #9  -  6,719  ( -0.7%)
09/06  #10 -  6,623  ( -1.4%)
10/06  #11 -  6,586  ( -0.6%)
11/06  #12 -  6,520  ( -1.0%)
12/06  #13 -  6,311  ( -3.2%)
             6 mnth  ( -7.7%)
             1 year  (-43.5%)

More all ages titles.

227. KABUKI: REFLECTIONS  [Icon]
12/05  --
01/06  --
02/06  --
03/06  --
04/06  --
05/06  --
06/06  --
07/06  #6 - 5,815
08/06  --
09/06  --
10/06  --
11/06  --
12/06  #7 - 5,226  (-10.1%)

David Mack’s sporadic art book makes one of its irregular appearances on the charts.

229. RED PROPHET: TALES OF ALVIN MAKER  [DBPro]
10/06  #1-2       -   1,617
11/06  #3 (of 12) - < 3,170  (   ?.?%)
12/06  #4 (of 12) -   5,034  (+>58.9%)

This book failed to chart last month, meaning that it must have sold fewer than 3,170 copies. This month it managed 5,034 and it was comfortably inside the top 250. There’s actual, significant growth here, even though these books aren’t going to develop typical Marvel sales patterns overnight.

240. MARVEL ADVENTURES FANTASTIC FOUR  [All ages]
12/05  #7  - 5,058  ( -8.4%)
01/06  #8  - 4,834  ( -4.4%)
02/06  #9  - 4,711  ( -2.5%)
03/06  #10 - 4,663  ( -1.0%)
04/06  #11 - 4,526  ( -2.9%)
05/06  #12 - 4,836  ( +6.8%)
06/06  #13 - 4,752  ( -1.7%)
07/06  #14 - 4,668  ( -1.8%)
08/06  #15 - 4,569  ( -2.1%)
09/06  #16 - 4,687  ( +2.6%)
10/06  #17 - 4,557  ( -2.8%)
11/06  #18 - 4,614  ( +1.3%)
12/06  #19 - 4,533  ( -1.8%)
            6 mnth  ( -4.6%)
            1 year  (-10.4%)


262. PTOLUS: CITY BY THE SPIRE  [DBPro]
10/06  #1 (of 6) -   1,873
11/05  #2 (of 6) - < 3,170  (  ?.?%)
12/06  #3 (of 6) -   3,186  (+>0.5%)

A little less emphatic than MAGICIAN or RED PROPHET, but still showing signs of growth. Looks like I’ll have to watch out for DBPro’s books after all.

Skip months
===========


CIVIL WAR
05/06  #1 (of 7) - 360,172
06/06  #2 (of 7) - 339,527  ( -5.7%)
07/06  #3 (of 7) - 332,451  ( -2.1%)
08/06  ---
09/06  #4 (of 7) - 283,556  (-14.7%)
10/06  ---
11/06  #5 (of 7) - 276,328  ( -2.5%)
12/06  ---

Late. The re-orders continue to flood in: 2,571 copies of issue #1, 2,147 of issue #3, 3,048 of issue #4 and 3,725 of issue #5.

Marvel also shifted a further 8,936 copies of CIVIL WAR: CHOOSING SIDES in December, bringing the total to 83,547.

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN
12/01  #38  -  88,666
12/02  #48  -  93,867
12/03  #502 -  90,484
12/04  #515 -  82,840
=====
12/05  #527 -  89,922  ( -0.5%)
01/06  #528 -  97,807  ( -8.8%)
02/06  #529 - 132,329  (+35.3%)
03/06  #530 - 101,226  (-23.5%)
04/06  #531 -  96,213  ( -5.0%)
05/06  #532 - 119,083  (+23.8%)
06/06  #533 - 137,926  (+15.8%)
07/06  #534 - 125,553  ( -9.0%)
08/06  ----
09/06  #535 - 122,968  ( -2.1%)
10/06  ----
11/06  #536 - 121,003  ( -1.6%)
12/06  ---

Delayed by CIVIL WAR. Issue #536 picks up 2,170 re-orders.

PUNISHER WAR JOURNAL
11/06  #1 - 102,727
12/06  --

Delayed by CIVIL WAR.

ULTIMATES 2
12/02  #9  - 101,811
12/03  #12 - 104,572
12/04  #1  - 146,271
=====
12/05  #9  -  94,493  ( -1.5%)
01/06  ---
02/06  ---
03/06  #10 -  94,900  ( +0.4%)
04/06  ---
05/06  ---
06/06  #11 -  96,751  ( +2.0%)
07/06  ---
08/06  ---
09/06  #12 -  99,538  ( +2.9%)
10/06  ---
11/06  ---
12/06  ---

Late again. December saw the second anniversary of issue #1. Isn’t that sweet?

CAPTAIN AMERICA
12/01  #50 - 40,010
12/02  #7  - 57,410
12/03  #21 - 43,018
12/04  ---
=====
12/05  #13 - 44,954  ( -0.2%)
01/05  ---
02/06  #14 - 44,041  ( -0.2%)
02/06  #15 - 43,350  ( -1.6%)
03/06  #16 - 44,717  ( +3.2%)
04/06  #17 - 45,541  ( +1.8%)
05/06  #18 - 46,740  ( +2.6%)
06/06  #19 - 47,315  ( +1.2%)
07/06  #20 - 47,357  ( +0.1%)
08/06  ---
09/06  #21 - 49,050  ( +3.6%)
09/06  #22 - 86,875  (+77.1%)
10/06  #23 - 81,323  ( -6.4%)
11/06  #24 - 82,348  ( +1.3%)
12/06  ---

Late, presumably because of CIVIL WAR tie-ins. Issue #24 picks up 2,463 re-orders.

MOON KNIGHT
04/06  #1 - 114,533
05/06  #2 -  77,552  (-32.3%)
06/06  #3 -  72,206  ( -6.9%)
07/06  ---
08/06  #4 -  67,802  ( -6.1%)
09/06  #5 -  64,736  ( -4.5%)
10/06  ---
11/06  #6 -  74,017  (+14.3%)
12/06  ---

Late.

ETERNALS
06/06  #1 (of 6) - 110,269
07/06  #2 (of 6) -  79,086  (-28.3%)
08/06  #3 (of 6) -  73,997  ( -6.4%)
09/06  #4 (of 6) -  66,556  (-10.1%)
10/06  --
11/06  #5 (of 6) -  66,356  ( -0.3%)
12/06  --

Late.

SQUADRON SUPREME
12/03  #5  - 70,321
12/04  #14 - 57,975
=====
03/06  #1  - 61,625  (+21.8%)
04/06  #2  - 51,197  (-16.9%)
05/06  #3  - 49,205  ( -3.9%)
06/06  #4  - 48,035  ( -1.8%)
07/06  #5  - 46,029  ( -4.2%)
08/06  #6  - 44,564  ( -3.2%)
09/06  ---
10/06  ---
11/06  #7  - 41,966  ( -5.8%)
12/06  ---

Off the schedule altogether. Issues #8 and #9 were solicited, with Mike Deodato as the new regular artist. Then they were cancelled, with Deodato blaming “late scripts.” Then Deodato was reassigned to the THUNDERBOLTS revamp. The delayed issues haven’t been rescheduled. So basically, the current position is that, in theory, SQUADRON SUPREME has not been cancelled, but in practice, they haven’t solicited any more issues. On any view, this is a troubled comic.

RUNAWAYS
12/03  #9  - 20,429
12/04  ---
=====
12/05  #11 - 25,260  ( -1.9%)
01/06  #12 - 24,989  ( -1.1%)
02/06  #13 - 24,313  ( -2.7%)
03/06  #14 - 24,536  ( +0.9%)
04/06  #15 - 24,046  ( -2.0%)
05/06  #16 - 23,842  ( -0.8%)
06/06  #17 - 23,654  ( -0.8%)
07/06  #18 - 24,678  ( +4.3%)
08/06  #19 - 25,042  ( +1.5%)
09/06  #20 - 23,561  ( -5.9%)
10/06  #21 - 25,553  ( +8.5%)
11/06  #22 - 25,908  ( +1.4%)
12/06  ---

Late.

POWERS  [Icon]
12/01  #17 - 28,205
12/02  #27 - 26,621
12/03  ---
12/04  #7  - 30,687
=====
12/05  #15 - 25,633  ( -1.8%)
01/06  ---
02/06  #16 - 24,924  ( -2.8%)
03/06  #17 - 24,139  ( -3.1%)
04/06  ---
05/06  #18 - 23,617  ( -2.2%)
06/06  ---
07/06  #19 - 23,156  ( -1.9%)
08/06  ---
09/06  ---
10/06  #20 - 22,943  ( -0.9%)
11/06  #21 - 22,134  ( -3.5%)
12/06  ---

Skip months.

WISDOM  [Max]
11/06  #1 (of 6) - 20,021
12/06  ---

Late.

KABUKI  [Icon]
12/04  #3 - 13,885
=====
12/05  ---
01/06  ---
02/06  #6 - 11,349  ( -0.6%)
03/06  ---
04/06  ---
05/06  ---
06/06  ---
07/06  ---
08/06  #7 - 10,798  ( -4.9%)
09/06  ---
10/06  ---
11/06  ---
12/06  ---

Skip month.

JACK KIRBY'S GALACTIC BOUNTY HUNTERS  [Icon]
07/06  #1 - 13,514
08/06  #2 -  9,301  (-31.2%)
09/06  ---
10/06  #3 -  7,716  (-17.0%)
11/06  ---
12/06  ---

Late.

MARVEL SPOTLIGHT
12/05  Cassaday/McKeever - 9,763
01/06       Ellis/Cheung - 6,843  ( -29.9%)
02/06        Whedon/Lark - 5,947  ( -13.1%)
03/06       Finch/Sacasa - 4,146  ( -30.3%)
04/06         Way/Coipel - 3,309  ( -20.2%)
05/06  ---
06/06     Millar/McNiven - 7,668  (+131.7%)
06/06     Gaiman/Larroca - 5,449  ( -28.9%)
07/06       Kirkman/Land - 3,963  ( -27.3%)
08/06       Brubaker/Tan - 3,580  (  -9.7%)
09/06          Lee/Kirby - 6,313  ( +76.3%)
10/06   Onslaught Reborn - 4,557  ( -27.8%)
11/06      Bendis/Bagley - 5,869  ( +28.8%)
12/06  ---

Late.

6 month comparisons
===================

+95.6% - Black Panther
+94.9% - Iron Man
+43.1% - Spider-Girl
+10.1% - Uncanny X-Men
+ 9.5% - Cable & Deadpool
+ 4.6% - Marvel Adventures Spider-Man
+ 3.8% - Ultimate Spider-Man
+ 1.1% - Astonishing X-Men
+ 0.3% - X-Men
- 0.5% - Daredevil
- 2.6% - Hulk
- 3.4% - Punisher
- 4.3% - New X-Men
- 4.5% - Sensational Spider-Man
- 4.6% - Marvel Adventures Fantastic Four
- 5.6% - Ultimate X-Men
- 7.7% - Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane
- 8.3% - Fantastic Four
- 9.6% - Nextwave
-14.0% - Official Handbook
-15.5% - Ms Marvel
-16.0% - Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man
-16.3% - New Excalibur
-17.9% - She-Hulk
-20.8% - New Avengers
-26.3% - Civil War: Front Line
-27.0% - Wolverine: Origins
-32.4% - Wolverine
-34.8% - Ultimate Fantastic Four
-37.5% - Exiles
-47.2% - X-Factor
-55.1% - Thunderbolts


1 year comparisons
==================

+86.7% - Black Panther
+81.6% - Fantastic Four
+62.2% - Iron Man
+50.3% - Amazing Spider-Girl
+29.8% - Hulk
+19.3% - Cable & Deadpool
+10.9% - Daredevil
+ 8.8% - Thunderbolts
+ 5.8% - Uncanny X-Men
+ 2.3% - Ultimate Spider-Man
+ 1.2% - X-Men
+ 0.1% - Marvel Adventures Spider-Man
- 3.1% - New Avengers
- 4.5% - Sensational Spider-Man
- 6.7% - Wolverine
- 7.1% - Punisher
- 8.7% - Ultimate X-Men
-10.4% - Marvel Adventures Fantastic Four
-12.4% - New X-Men
-14.3% - Official Handbook
-16.6% - She-Hulk
-21.0% - Ultimate Fantastic Four
-21.8% - Ghost Rider
-35.8% - New Excalibur
-38.1% - X-Factor
-38.8% - Exiles
-43.5% - Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane
-48.2% - Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man


2 year comparisons
==================

+78.2% - Fantastic Four
+37.7% - Iron Man
+25.6% - Amazing Spider-Girl
+ 3.2% - Cable & Deadpool
+ 3.0% - She-Hulk
+ 2.7% - Official Handbook
- 2.4% - Wolverine
- 4.4% - Uncanny X-Men
- 4.9% - Daredevil
- 9.5% - Astonishing X-Men
- 9.8% - X-Men
-11.5% - New X-Men
-14.3% - Ultimate Spider-Man
-16.6% - Thunderbolts
-18.2% - Punisher
-24.8% - Sensational Spider-Man
-29.4% - Ultimate Fantastic Four
-38.6% - Exiles
-49.0% - New Avengers


3 year comparisons
==================

+130.1% - Iron Man
+112.2% - New Avengers
+ 68.7% - Fantastic Four
+ 19.8% - Spider-Girl
+  5.6% - Wolverine
-  4.8% - Uncanny X-Men
-  7.8% - Hulk
- 10.5% - Daredevil
- 14.4% - Punisher
- 29.4% - X-Men
- 30.6% - Ultimate Spider-Man
- 35.5% - Ultimate X-Men
- 46.2% - Exiles
- 68.3% - Ultimate Fantastic Four
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1 COMMENT

  1. 158. AGENTS OF ATLAS
    08/06 #1 (of 6) – 19,292
    09/06 #2 (of 6) – 14,416 (-25.3%)
    10/06 #3 (of 6) – 12,929 (-10.3%)
    11/06 #4 (of 6) – 12,388 ( -4.2%)
    12/06 #5 (of 6) – 11,853 ( -4.3%)

    Well received, but not many people actually bought it.

    I posted on Newsarama that perhaps people are reluctant to buy an relaunch of old characters from Marvel after being lied to about the Sentry.

    This view was not well recieved on Newsarama, as I may have not worded it properly.

    But the problem may not have to do with the creative team at all but with it being Published by Marvel who has a habit of lying about past characters. Thus, no matter how much fantastic press the book recieved many people (myself included) are going to buy the trade.

    Does anyone else think that the Sentry silliness may have impacted sales of this title?

    Anyway- thanks for the lists. They are always one of the highlights of my month.

  2. A few notes :
    – Captain America : it’s on on skip months until February, because #25 is post-CW. And it will actually be late then, being delayed into March for some reason.
    – Powers : it’s actually quite late : #22 was originally solicited for October :
    http://www.comicbookresources.com/news/newsitem.cgi?id=7869
    – Fantastic Four : I’d been wondering why it was so late compared to Amazing Spider-Man ; the two books should suffer the same way from the CW delays, but FF has shipped consistently one month later than ASM these last few months. Now the book seems nearly back on track with MacDuffie, it looks like Straczinski was the problem (especially considering that Squadron Supreme has sunk into a black hole). Has he fallen ill or something ? If so, who is writing ASM ?

  3. Are there equivalent numbers on TPB sales? With rare exceptions, I nearly only buy TPBs these days, so I’m curious how those do, sales-wise.

    I’m kind of concerned that Criminal’s not even going to make it far enough in single issues for a trade to come out.

  4. I posted on Newsarama that perhaps people are reluctant to buy an relaunch of old characters from Marvel after being lied to about the Sentry.

    Possible, but I’d think it a lot more likely that nobody bought this because it doesn’t have anybody the hardcore Marvel crowd has ever heard of, either in the cast or in the creators.

    Speaking personally, I didn’t buy it (or Beyond!) because I was waiting for the trade. These days it seems that Marvel will put anything and everything into the trade. As Paul pointed out, Daughters of the Dragon sold pretty poorly, and yet it still got a trade in short order, defying the conventional wisdom that, “If there’s no demand for the singles, there won’t be a trade.”

    Considering how annoying and obtrusive the ads are in comics nowadays, waiting for the trade makes for a much more enjoyable reading experience anyway.

  5. Possible, but I’d think it a lot more likely that nobody bought this because it doesn’t have anybody the hardcore Marvel crowd has ever heard of, either in the cast or in the creators.

    I agree — not to mention it’s a miniseries, it came during a glut of Civil War titles, and it didn’t seem to get a whole lot of promotion outside of some cryptic press releases on the news sites.

    The hardcore fanbase doesn’t seem all that turned off by delays, ads, excessive crossover hype, or any of the other stuff going on right about now, so I’m guessing they’re not still nursing a grudge about a questionable marketing stunt from five years ago.

  6. No offense Michael, but I think your theory is a little ridiculous. I don’t think there were that many people that felt “lied to” by the Sentry business in the first place, and I don’t see how chacracters that could easily be looked up on Wikipedia, who have had issues published, is the same as a lost sketch and concept which is what the Sentry was pruported to be.
    I’d say it was a mixture of the obscure characters, little known creators, and possibly the general ‘silliness’ of the book (talking Gorilla, 50s Robot).

    I am forced to wonder how the trades for the first 1602 series sold both in the direct market and in book stores. I don’t recall the second mini (Brave New World) lighting up the sales charts, yet they did another installment. There must be more there.

  7. I don’t think Agents of Atlas’ sales was impacted by the Sentry in any way at all. They’re z-list characters from the 50s who have appeared maybe once a decade since. That’s all the reason you need for the sales the book got.

  8. Are there equivalent numbers on TPB sales? With rare exceptions, I nearly only buy TPBs these days, so I’m curious how those do, sales-wise.

    With single issues, the monthly data is worth charting because it’s a concentrated burst of all the copies that will likely ever be sold of a given issue. With collections, the initial order is less relevant because sales are supposed to accumulate over time. That said, for many collections – mostly those aimed at the direct market, i.e. Marvel and DC 2nd and 3rd tier superhero books – the sales patterns seem to be similar as with single issues. A concentrated burst of interest when they first appear and then nothing thereafter.

    I’m kind of concerned that Criminal’s not even going to make it far enough in single issues for a trade to come out.

    Sean Phillips posted the cover to the upcoming (May?) first collection on the engine a few days ago.

  9. Hey it was just a theory, I’m not married to it.
    Maybe ‘lied to’ was the wrong phrasing.
    Could the Sentry stunt have simply made Agents of Atlats seem like a “been there done that” type ploy, with no-one even bothering to see if the Atlas characters actually had a history, beucase perhaps they assumed it was the same type of silliness as the Sentry?

    I was just postualting, I’m not convinced either, just trying to get a discussion going.

  10. Well, Michael, not to gang up on you, but you did as for a discussion…I’d have to agree with the others that the Sentry ploy had little or nothing to do with sales of Agents of Atlas (I for one was actually amused by the Sentry stunt). In my case, I wasn’t very familiar with the Atlas creators or characters and (what little I read of) the concept didn’t blow my mind. Couple this with the abundance of ads (as mentioned) and Marvel’s track record for delays — I figured I check out the reviews and wait for the trade. Honestly, whether the Atlas characters had actual, published history or were new creations wouldn’t have affected my decision at all.

    Still, If it affected your decision, there are probably others.

  11. Yeah, I guess what’s what I”m getting at. I read that press stuff for Agents of Atlas and it had a suspicoius sounding “lost chacters from marvel’s past” sound to it. So I just ignored it as being ‘another Sentry’.

    Thank you Travis though for saying it may have affected someone other than just myself. The Beat does catter to a more sophistacted version of comic book readers, in comparisoin to say the Wizard message boards. Perhaps there were others who ignored Atlas due to past Sentry association, but these readers probably aren’t at The Beat.

    Either way, I want to stress again that I will pick up Atlas in trade due to all the postive buzz, and I regret the fact that I associated Atlas with Sentry stunts in the first place.

  12. Straczynski
    has been working on the Babylon 5 stuff,
    has been hired to work another show,
    and is currently serving jury duty.

    But that is not the reason for all of the FF skip months. Thise are directly due to the Civil War tie-ins.

  13. I’m curious to know if Wisdom picked up many sales in the UK that didn’t figure in last month’s chart. It had a poor performance then, but since, maybe, the UK would be the books major market (with a British character and a Doctor Who writer) I thought the book would pick up a few sales once the UK was factored in.

  14. UK sales don’t appear on this chart at all. It’s certainly quite plausible that WISDOM would be doing better in Britain, if only because Paul Cornell has an existing following over here from his DOCTOR WHO novels. But let’s keep that in perspective – Cornell was primarily one of the writers who churned out tie-in novels aimed at hardcore fans during the years when the show was off the air. It’s a very, very different audience from the mass viewership who watch the show on a Saturday night.

  15. 108. WONDER MAN
    12/06 #1 (of 5) – 22,282A decidedly lacklustre debut. Well, it’s Wonder Man – they couldn’t really have expected much better.

    Actually, I’m a fan of Wonder Man and Peter David, but passed on this title only because of the painfully bad art. If this book featured an artist with a generally pleasing style, I bet it would have debuted around the 60s at the very least.

  16. Just FYI — actual sales on Criminal 1 2 and 3 —

    Issue 1 – we sold 31,000
    Issue 2 – we sold 25,000
    Issue 3 – we sold 21,000 (and that’s before any reorders)

    I’d prefer it not to drop like that too, but even orders for issue 5 were above the numbers you’re reporting.

  17. “17. WOLVERINE: ORIGINS…
    Now that the variant cover boosts are a thing of the past, WOLVERINE: ORIGINS is dropping far too quickly for comfort. The book has dropped by almost 20,000 in two months. That should be ringing alarm bells.”

    Do you mean that WOLVERINE: ORIGINS doesn’t have variant covers any more (because it does as of issue #10) or that they just aren’t as effective any more?

  18. So, a quick comparison on Criminal…

    25,978 / 31,000 = 0.838
    21,115 / 25,000 = 0.845
    17,702 / 21,000 = 0.843

    Good to know that the ratio is consistent. I think Criminal will do nicely when collected.

  19. Concerning the recent Max minis like Zombies and SoS as well as the Pete Wisdom mini I’d would like to mention the price of $3.99 for a single issue.

    As they still stay at 32 pages I was suprised by the price increase when they were solicited. And decided to wait for the trade, as they couldn’t possibly be priced at the multiple of the single issues. It had been a recent trend with Marvel anyways to sell the trade cheaper than the single issues. Which leads to two assumptions:

    1. The recent price increase of the singles to $2.99 has hurt the the single issue to trade price ratio, especially since the singles contain ads.
    2. Pricing a single 32-page issue at $3.99 obviously hurts sales.

    Taken into account that Squadron Supreme was hurt so badly by dropping the MAX label htey pretty much managed to kill the imprint over the course of just 1/2 a year. (excluding the Punisher)

  20. > Good to know that the ratio is consistent.

    Yeah – I’d be interested to find out if the “84% rule” applies to other books as well (i.e., UK/etc ordering patterns are consistant with the US), or if Criminal specifically is just selling peanuts outside the US, so the ratio’s pretty much consistant because that’s 95%+ of their sales…

  21. Paul (O’Brien) Paul Cornell has written Father’s Day, one of the best of the first series of new Dr Who, And is writing for the third series. (as well as a few robin hood episodes), as well as being viewed as the best writer of Dr Who fiction by a few *grin*

  22. Whatever the reasons anyone here didn’t buy AGENTS OF ATLAS, I hope they’ll make up for it by picking up the trade. This miniseries was easily one of the highlights of my comic reading year.

    An interesting, compelling story; fantastic art; quirky characters that haven’t been beaten into cliche six ways from Sunday. What more could any reader ask?

  23. As others have already pointed out, there ARE sales that aren’t included in this chart, and therefore you’d expect the true number to be higher than the ones we see here. The most significant are sales to the UK which, according to ICV2, can account for between 3 and 20% of sales, depending on the book. In any event, even if ICV2 *are* underestimating the sales (and CBGXtra tend to come up with almost exactly the same numbers), they’re clearly underestimating it consistently every month, which means the trends are still valid. And the trends are the important bit.

  24. Sure, but there’s a big difference between being at 17K on your third issue of a new creator-owned book and being at 21K. One looks bad, the other not so much.

  25. Reply to Ed Brubaker—

    I’m not arguing the numbers you posted, but they just don’t show the true sales of the book. Those won’t be known until several months after the trade is available, because so many people these days want the collected editions.

    The sales on #3 are 21,000 so far and, hopefully, they are but a drop in the bucket compared to the final sales.
    —–
    These charts are valuable in comparing month-to-month and year-to-year sales. Trends are important.

  26. Banderas said:

    “Concerning the recent Max minis like Zombies and SoS as well as the Pete Wisdom mini I’d would like to mention the price of $3.99 for a single issue.

    As they still stay at 32 pages I was suprised by the price increase when they were solicited.”

    A few years ago, the Max line was priced at $2.99 while the regular books were still at $2.25 and $2.50. Thus there is precedent for pricing the Max books higher.

    Unfortunately, the regular books soon followed to that price.

  27. Diana Kingston-Gabai Says:
    01/24/07 at 10:22 pm
    Given that it’s an ICON book, though, are sales figures really relevant to the continuation of “Criminal”? I’d hate for such a great book to go under just because of the usual market stupidity…

    ——————————————–

    God I hope so, because Criminal is the best new book that’s coming out every month.

  28. Ed, thanks for posting the actual numbers. They are very healthy for a creator owned book, and the drop is not bad by current standards.

    I hope intelligent readers (i.e. Beat readers) understand that these numbers are consistently low by about this factor. As Paul points out the trends are accurate, and I think that’s why they are valuable to post..

  29. Yes, if ICV2’s estimates were just wildly random and erratic, then you wouldn’t see the sort of consistency we get on books like PUNISHER and (leaving aside this month’s glitch) EXILES, or the solid, consistent trends that we get on so many other books. We can pretty much be confident that the long-term trends are accurate, and to my mind, the long-term trends are the interesting bit.

    And, of course, it’s always the case that some books will do an unusually large proportion of their sales in trade paperback format, especially non-superhero titles.

    Returning to the topic of Paul Cornell: Yes, I realise that he’s written for the current TV show, but I honestly don’t think that’s increased awareness of him outside the Dr Who fandom. The public don’t pay much attention to the writer credits of individual episodes, and they’re unlikely to remember the name of anyone but the most high-profile and frequent writers. If you asked the average viewer to name a Dr Who writer, he’d probably only be able to come up with Russell T Davies – the head writer and the public face of the production team. At a push, he might remember Mark Gatiss, who’s already well known from League of Gentlemen. But Paul Cornell, I’d say, is somebody who’s only likely to be well known among Dr Who fandom.

  30. It’s a valid point, allthough I doubt many of us would have been able to name “that guy who came up with the O.C. or something” 18 months or so ago either. The book’s been publicised as having one of the writers of Doctor Who on it, which is probably only a big draw to UK readers anyway, -whoever- that particular writer was. It’s not going to make a significant impact on US sales.

    I think in the UK it’s the phrase “one of the writers of Doctor Who” that has the appeal. Not especially which one. Maybe Gattis or Davies would have picked up more readers, but I doubt it. I don’t think people care about the specifics much either.

    I was only curious as my local comic shop said they’d got an average number of copies in (for a miniseries) and sold out and were reordering, which would seem to suggest that maybe it’s selling better to Brits who “get it”.

  31. I think Criminal probably gets more UK sales than the average Marvel book, I would guess, because of the Sean Phillips factor.

    But yeah, sales on the comic do matter, Diana, because this is more like an Image book, and if the comic itself doesn’t sell, we can’t keep doing it to get to those future trades. As of right now, we’re moving enough to continue, but I’d be a lot more relaxed about it if we sold a few K more each issue. ;) But I’m optimistic, because we’re already doing a lot better than I predicted we would.

  32. Well, the specifics matter to you more than us, because the difference to you between 17.5k and 21k is a material (cash) difference to you, ¥€$? :)

  33. When I checked out this blog, I’ve begun to suspect the Paul O’Brien doing the sales commentary is the same one who dissed the Black Panther/Storm wedding at Ninth Art:

    http://ninthart.com/display.php?article=1158

    If so, I’d take his predictions about sales trends for Black Panther-and other series-with a grain of salt. After all, this is what he said about how BP would fare last summer:

    “Now, true enough, the book’s still doing an awful lot better than the previous BLACK PANTHER series by Christopher Priest. During its last couple of years, that title consistently sold around 19,000 copies. Hudlin is indisputably doing better. But the problem is that he’s still shedding around 2,000 readers with every issue. At that rate, he’ll be down at Priest’s sales levels by the summer.”

    Yet, a quick look at the sales O’Brien posted above indicate that even the non-crossover issues of Hudlin’s BP never dropped to the 19,000 mark. So, it’s no shock that the crossover issues would sell even better with the Wedding Issue (No. 18) being the top selling installment of the series.

    This leads me to wonder if there is a little bit of bitterness on O’Brien’s part. It’s well known that O’Brien would prefer Priest on the book, but the sad truth is the acclaimed writer’s run simply didn’t sell well. There are a number of theories for this, including that Priest’s run did not get enough promotion from Marvel via means like a long rumored crossover with the X-Men.

    Suddenly, Hudlin’s Panther crossing over with the X-Men (“Wild Kingdom”) no longer seems so “gimmicky” or “crass.”

    To further complicate things, we honestly have no idea how Black Panther’s sales will be affected by the character joining the cast of Fantastic Four. Sales could go back down, jump up the charts, or remain stable. The bottom line is that O’Brien doesn’t bring the possibility that Black Panther “crashing” is not a sure thing.

    I understand that O’Brien is biased, but could he please acknowledge this upfront instead of pretending that he’s being totally object about Hudlin’s Black Panther?

  34. I remember Ed Brubaker one posting “I don’t pay any attention to sales reports” I guess times have changed.

  35. Regarding newuniversal –

    Maybe it’s just me, but I am not buying it for the authors. I would buy any “new interpretation of the New Universe”, based on my nostalgic interest in the New Universe.

    I suppose that’s not the same as being interested in the characters – or is it?