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Marvel Month-to-Month Sales July 2006

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BY PAUL O’BRIEN

Well, here’s something I never thought I’d see – a month where most of the six-month comparisons are going up. July was an extremely good month for Marvel, mostly thanks to CIVIL WAR. On top of that, X-MEN and UNCANNY X-MEN get new creative teams, a new GHOST RIDER title launches, and the BEYOND! miniseries begins. Once again, Marvel are the runaway market leader. They beat DC in dollar share by 40.4% to 33.9%, and in unit share by 44.3% to 35.9%.

One of Marvel’s big July events isn’t on this chart at all, though. The HALO GRAPHIC NOVEL is over on the graphic novels chart, where it made number 2 with orders of 10,528. Not a desperately huge audience by direct market standards, but it doesn’t matter – a book like HALO is aimed at a wider audience and its sales won’t be confined to the direct market stores.

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

Since our new home at the Beat has rather narrower margins, last month’s tables suffered from a bit of line wrap. The obvious way round that is to stop repeating the whole title in every single line. So…

1. CIVIL WAR
May 06 #1 (of 7) – 326,400
Jun 06 #2 (of 7) – 299,964 (-8.1%)
Jul 06 #3 (of 7) – 290,709 (-3.1%)

See, isn’t that so much nicer?

Now then… CIVIL WAR. Once again, the line-wide crossover sprawled across Marvel’s output in July. If you’re keeping track, it clocks in at one issue of CIVIL WAR itself, seven tie-in issues in regular titles (it was meant to be eight, but FANTASTIC FOUR didn’t come out on time), four issues of special CIVIL WAR tie-in miniseries, a SENSATIONAL SPIDER-MAN issue about Spider-Man losing his mask, the Director’s Cut of CIVIL WAR #1, and a mock CIVIL WAR Daily Bugle newspaper. In other words, thirteen issues of actual story before you even get to the variant covers. And every one is raking in the sales.

The book is also performing well in re-orders. As always, the extra copies are included in the numbers above. Issue #1 sold a further 47,880 in July, comprising 32,878 copies of the Director’s Cut edition, plus normal reorders of 15,002 (which would include the variant covers). Issue #2 had reorders of 46,108, surely also driven in part by variants. Still, a sale is a sale, and the fact is that even on the US direct market numbers, CIVIL WAR is consistently selling around the 300K mark – an incredible performance to sustain for three issues.

But.

There’s a catch.

CIVIL WAR is running horribly late, and Marvel have just announced some drastic rescheduling. Issue #4, which should have been out in August, is not coming out in September. Issue #5, which should have been out in September, is now due for November. Marvel have announced issues #6 and #7 for December 2006 and January 2007.

Although Marvel claim that they don’t anticipate any further rescheduling, it’s difficult to see what possible basis they can have for that belief. It means the book would be back on a monthly schedule in November, and Steve McNiven has already spelt out quite clearly that he can’t produce the book on a monthly schedule. In fact, Mark Millar has openly admitted that the creators never thought the original schedule was achievable – which begs the question of why on earth it was fixed in the first place.

This sort of delay is hardly unprecedented. We all know the usual routine. Everyone grumbles about the book being late, and then they buy it anyway. ULTIMATES is a good example. There would be no point shipping that book with fill-in art, because Bryan Hitch is the main selling point.

I’m not quite so convinced that Steve McNiven is a personal selling point for CIVIL WAR. I think the brand name itself is selling comics. Look at the 100K-plus sales of FRONT LINE, and the massive boosts enjoyed by the tie-in issues. I think Marvel would have got away with putting another artist on the core title, as long as they were given enough lead-in time to do a suitably good job. But they’ve left it far too late for that now.

On top of that, CIVIL WAR is a special case, because it’s the lynchpin of a linewide crossover. Marvel have already postponed issues of CIVIL WAR: FRONT LINE, FANTASTIC FOUR, AMAZING SPIDER-MAN and PUNISHER WAR JOURNAL because of the knock-on effect. Logically, there have to be more. Unless they’re prepared to blow the ending of CIVIL WAR, how can they possibly move on to the next arc in NEW AVENGERS? Or CAPTAIN AMERICA? Or IRON MAN? Or any of the three Spider-Man titles? How can they launch MIGHTY AVENGERS? Or continue the relaunch of THOR? And so on.

On any realistic assessment, the end of CIVIL WAR is slipping by a quarter. That’s a heck of a lot of comics – many of them top sellers – which are potentially going to vanish from the shelves while everyone stands around, twiddling their thumbs, and waiting for CIVIL WAR to finish.

Another option is to do what DC did with INFINITE CRISIS and bring in a rush-job fill-in artist. Of course, the results of that were far from ideal, but it doesn’t seem to have done them any harm in the long run. They can always go back to fix it in the trade, if they’re that worried about the quality of the trade paperback.

And then there’s option three: plough on with the other comics anyway, and blow the ending of CIVIL WAR weeks before it hits the shelves. Marvel don’t even seem to be considering that.

None of the options are ideal. Of course, if Marvel had put the book on an achievable schedule in the first place, they wouldn’t be having his problem. Anyhow, the omens look bleak for huge disruption to Marvel’s top selling comics over the next few months. DC must be breaking out the party hats. Marvel, meanwhile, have gone to great lengths to publicise a project that now makes them look like a bunch of incompetents. And while readers are merely inconvenienced, retailers can stare at their cashflow forecasts and weep.

The CIVIL WAR miniseries itself will still sell just fine when it resumes. That’s not really in doubt. The interesting question will be how badly the knock-on effects mount up – there are real financial consequences here, in terms of months when Marvel’s major titles could be missing from the shelves.

3. NEW AVENGERS
Jul 01 #44 – 62,604
Jul 02 #56 – 51,798
Jul 03 —
Jul 04 #500 – 105,617
======
Jul 05 #7 – 158,693 ( -3.6%)
Aug 05 #8 – 156,037 ( -1.7%)
Aug 05 #9 – 147,501 ( -5.5%)
Sep 05 #10 – 143,014 ( -3.0%)
Sep 05 #11 – 134,125 ( -6.2%)
Oct 05 #12 – 130,110 ( -3.0%)
Nov 05 #13 – 126,148 ( -3.0%)
Dec 05 #14 – 126,583 ( +0.3%)
Jan 06 #15 – 124,143 ( -1.9%)
Feb 06 #16 – 124,256 ( +0.1%)
Mar 06 #17 – 122,847 ( -1.1%)
Apr 06 #18 – 121,550 ( -1.1%)
May 06 #19 – 125,223 ( +3.0%)
Jun 06 #20 – 125,600 ( +0.3%)
Jun 06 #21 – 142,625 (+13.6%)
Jul 06 #22 – 124,617 (-12.6%)
6 mnth ( +3.4%)
1 year (-21.5%)
2 year (+18.0%)

Dropping back to its normal level after a variant cover last month. This is a CIVIL WAR tie-in arc, but it doesn’t seem to be making any real difference to sales, perhaps because NEW AVENGERS was so high to start with. As we’ll see, the effects on lower-selling titles are frequently astonishing.

Issue #21 picks up 8,347 reorders. And remarkably, the NEW AVENGERS: ILLUMINATI special is back yet again, this time with a Civil War variant cover. This time it charts at number 141 with a further 13,333 orders, bringing the total to 140,944.

6. AMAZING SPIDER-MAN
Jul 01 #33 – 79,564
Jul 02 #43 – 98,980
Jul 03 #55 – 95,467
Jul 04 #510 – 84,750
======
Jul 05 #522 – 73,130 ( -1.3%)
Aug 05 #523 – 72,046 ( -1.5%)
Sep 05 #524 – 71,065 ( -1.4%)
Oct 05 #525 – 91,707 (+29.0%)
Nov 05 #526 – 90,343 ( -1.5%)
Dec 05 #527 – 89,922 ( -0.5%)
Jan 06 #528 – 97,807 ( -8.8%)
Feb 06 #529 – 132,329 (+35.3%)
Mar 06 #530 – 101,226 (-23.5%)
Apr 06 #531 – 96,213 ( -5.0%)
May 06 #532 – 119,083 (+23.8%)
Jun 06 #533 – 128,734 ( +8.1%)
Jul 06 #534 – 113,522 (-11.8%)
6 mnth (+16.1%)
1 year (+55.2%)
2 year (+33.9%)
3 year (+18.9%)

Another CIVIL WAR tie-in, and again performing way above its normal level. The tie-in issues are performing well in re-orders, and of course variant covers are present once again. Issue #533 sells another 15,752 copies, while issue #532 sells 13,560 more. Even allowing for the variant dimension, this is a vast level of re-order activity by Marvel’s standards.

7,12. CIVIL WAR: FRONT LINE
Jun 06 #1 (of 11) – 126,929
Jun 06 #2 (of 11) – 118,392 (-6.7%)
Jul 06 #3 (of 11) – 111,421 (-5.9%)
Jul 06 #4 (of 11) – 103,153 (-7.4%)

Dropping out of the top ten, but still above the 100K mark – a remarkable achievement for the secondary CIVIL WAR book. Both of the June issues see reorders – 4,872 for issue #1, and 15,650 for issue #2.

8. WOLVERINE: ORIGINS
Apr 06 #1 – 182,672
May 06 #2 – 131,522 (-28.0%)
Jun 06 #3 – 116,058 (-11.8%)
Jul 06 #4 – 110,830 ( -4.5%)

The highest book that isn’t a CIVIL WAR tie-in, and it’s levelling out at a very good number indeed. The Director’s Cut edition of issue #1 also ships this month, charting at number 113 and adding a further 18,432 sales.

9. CIVIL WAR: X-MEN
Jul 06 #1 (of 4) – 106,162

Back to CIVIL WAR, and this is the X-Men’s rather tenuous tie-in. It’s really a sequel to X-MEN: THE 198, but hey, Iron Man appears for two pages, so what more do you want? Once again, the crossover sales are enormous.

10. WOLVERINE
Jul 01 #166 – 70,933
Jul 02 #179 – 68,083
Jul 03 #3 – 90,717
Jul 04 #17 – 66,589
======
Jul 05 #30 – 76,651 ( -4.1%)
Aug 05 #31 – 75,618 ( -1.3%)
Sep 05 #32 – 89,026 (+17.7%)
Sep 05 #33 – 78,508 (-11.8%)
Oct 05 #34 – 75,664 ( -3.6%)
Oct 05 #35 – 73,684 ( -2.6%)
Nov 05 #36 – 94,355 (+28.1%)
Dec 05 #37 – 73,866 (-21.7%)
Jan 06 #38 – 73,815 ( -0.0%)
Feb 06 #39 – 75,285 ( +2.0%)
Mar 06 #40 – 77,627 ( +3.1%)
Apr 06 #41 – 70,965 ( -8.6%)
May 06 #42 – 112,209 (+58.1%)
Jun 06 #43 – 101,759 ( -9.3%)
Jul 06 #44 – 105,220 ( +3.4%)
6 mnth (+42.5%)
1 year (+37.3%)
2 year (+58.0%)
3 year (+16.0%)

Another CIVIL WAR tie-in arc, and sales remain way above normal levels. And once again, the crossover issues are piling on the reorders. A variant cover helps to shift 15,093 extra copies of issue #42, while issue #43 has straightforward reorders of 3,952.

11,19. UNCANNY X-MEN
Jul 01 #396 – 117,560
Jul 02 #408 – 87,074
Jul 03 #428 – 93,546
Jul 04 #446 – 96,961
======
Jul 05 #462 – 91,125 ( -0.1%)
Aug 05 #463 – 87,610 ( -3.9%)
Sep 05 #464 – 85,885 ( -2.0%)
Oct 05 #465 – 84,271 ( -1.9%)
Nov 05 #466 – 82,825 ( -1.7%)
Dec 05 #467 – 81,282 ( -1.9%)
Jan 06 #468 – 79,808 ( -1.8%)
Feb 06 #469 – 79,039 ( -1.0%)
Mar 06 #470 – 79,389 ( +0.4%)
Mar 06 #471 – 78,286 ( -1.4%)
Apr 06 #472 – 79,157 ( +1.1%)
May 06 #473 – 79,335 ( +0.2%)
Jun 06 #474 – 78,140 ( -1.5%)
Jul 06 #475 – 103,993 (+33.1%)
Jul 06 #476 – 88,775 (-14.6%)
6 mnth (+11.2%)
1 year ( -2.6%)
2 year ( -8.4%)
3 year ( -5.1%)

Ed Brubaker and Billy Tan take over with issue #475, and sales duly rocket over the 100K mark – although in such a busy month, it’s not enough to get them into the top ten. With the second issue of the month, they drop back to 89K. It’s good, and it’s a big improvement on the number inherited from Chris Claremont, but it’s really no better than the title was doing a year ago. Still, with CIVIL WAR taking most of the attention, this creative jump hasn’t been hyped as much as you’d expect, and overall these are good results.

15. GHOST RIDER
Sep 05 #1 (of 6) – 119,575
Oct 05 #2 (of 6) – 71,473 (-40.2%)
Nov 05 #3 (of 6) – 62,914 (-12.0%)
Dec 05 #4 (of 6) – 59,678 ( -5.1%)
Jan 06 #5 (of 6) – 56,958 ( -4.6%)
Feb 06 #6 (of 6) – 55,802 ( -2.0%)
Mar 06 —
Apr 06 —
May 06 —
Jun 06 —
Jul 06 #1 – 98,826 (+77.1%)
6 mnth (+73.5%)

Following the success of Garth Ennis’ miniseries, Daniel Way and Mark Texeira bring the Ghost Rider back for another ongoing title. Although issue #1 of the miniseries did better, that’s only after reorders and variants are factored in – in its first month, it sold 95,182. Sales dropped off quite severely by the end of the miniseries, but even so, it sold very well for a Ghost Rider book, and the ongoing title looks to have inherited the momentum.

17,23. X-MEN
Jul 01 #116 – 120,703
Jul 02 #129 – 98,817
Jul 03 #143 – 99,850
Jul 04 #159 – 93,164
======
Jul 05 #173 – 77,154 ( -2.2%)
Aug 05 #174 – 76,342 ( -1.1%)
Sep 05 #175 – 76,555 ( +0.3%)
Oct 05 #176 – 74,635 ( -2.5%)
Nov 05 #177 – 78,405 ( +5.1%)
Nov 05 #178 – 76,195 ( -2.8%)
Dec 05 #179 – 77,189 ( +1.3%)
Dec 05 #180 – 75,559 ( -2.1%)
Jan 06 #181 – 74,094 ( -1.9%)
Feb 06 #182 – 78,653 ( +6.2%)
Feb 06 #183 – 79,477 ( +1.0%)
Mar 06 #184 – 79,480 ( +0.0%)
Apr 06 #185 – 78,815 ( -0.8%)
May 06 #186 – 79,536 ( +0.9%)
Jun 06 #187 – 77,918 ( -2.0%)
Jul 06 #188 – 95,487 (+22.5%)
Jul 06 #189 – 82,268 (-13.8%)
6 mnth (+11.0%)
1 year ( +6.6%)
2 year (-11.7%)
3 year (-17.6%)

The other monthly X-Men book also changes its creative team, with Mike Carey coming aboard as writer and Chris Bachalo jumping over from UNCANNY to provide the art. This book has been in the doldrums for a couple of years, compared to the sort of sales it used to deliver, and the initial signs here are promising – even the second issue of the month does better than X-MEN had managed in the previous year.

20. CIVIL WAR: YOUNG AVENGERS & RUNAWAYS
Jul 06 #1 (of 4) – 85,346

Back to CIVIL WAR, and a miniseries which serves to plug RUNAWAYS and to bridge the gap between seasons of YOUNG AVENGERS. YOUNG AVENGERS normally sells around 56K, so this is a very healthy number.

Meanwhile, YOUNG AVENGERS #12 scrapes onto the bottom end of the chart at number 299, with reorders of 1,681. That brings its total sales to 57,927.

22. ULTIMATE FANTASTIC FOUR
Jul 04 #9 – 92,923
======
Jul 05 #21 – 91,321 (+32.2%)
Aug 05 #22 – 71,767 (-21.4%)
Sep 05 #23 – 71,494 ( -0.4%)
Oct 05 #24 – 70,549 ( -1.3%)
Nov 05 #25 – 70,032 ( -0.7%)
Dec 05 #26 – 69,689 ( -0.5%)
Jan 06 —
Feb 06 #27 – 67,922 ( -2.5%)
Mar 06 #28 – 67,480 ( -0.7%)
Apr 06 #29 – 67,554 ( +0.1%)
May 06 #30 – 103,837 (+53.7%)
Jun 06 —
Jul 06 #31 – 84,460 (-18.7%)
6 mnth (+24.3%)
1 year ( -7.5%)
2 year ( -9.1%)

The second part of the zombie arc. Once again, it benefits in part from a variant cover, and in part from the surprise success of MARVEL ZOMBIES.

27. ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN
Jul 01 #11 – 79,267
Jul 02 #24 – 92,459
Jul 03 #43 – 101,316
Jul 04 #62 – 98,963
======
Jul 05 #79 – 78,404 ( -1.3%)
Jul 05 #80 – 76,906 ( -1.9%)
Aug 05 #81 – 75,572 ( -1.7%)
Sep 05 #82 – 75,756 ( +0.2%)
Sep 05 #83 – 75,539 ( -0.3%)
Oct 05 #84 – 74,670 ( -1.2%)
Nov 05 #85 – 74,264 ( -0.5%)
Nov 05 #86 – 76,864 ( +3.5%)
Dec 05 #87 – 74,537 ( -3.0%)
Dec 05 #88 – 74,213 ( -0.4%)
Jan 06 #89 – 71,935 ( -3.1%)
Feb 06 #90 – 71,470 ( -0.6%)
Mar 06 #91 – 74,028 ( +3.6%)
Mar 06 #92 – 72,269 ( -2.4%)
Apr 06 #93 – 72,831 ( +0.8%)
May 06 #94 – 74,051 ( +1.7%)
May 06 #95 – 73,564 ( -0.7%)
Jun 06 #96 – 73,472 ( -0.1%)
Jul 06 #97 – 76,612 ( +4.3%)
6 mnth ( +6.5%)
1 year ( -2.3%)
2 year (-22.6%)
3 year (-24.4%)

That 4.3% climb is for the first part of the Ultimate Clone Saga. No, seriously, that’s the only apparent reason.

28. ETERNALS
Jun 06 #1 (of 6) – 108,157
Jul 06 #2 (of 6) – 74,193 (-31.4%)

A hefty second issue drop for a series which may have fallen between the cracks in terms of promotion. Issue #1 picks up reorders of 4,940. These are great numbers by the standards of the Eternals, but that’s not saying much. Gaiman’s last major project for Marvel, MARVEL 1602, sold consistently over 100K. Against that benchmark, this is disappointing.

Let’s pause now for a break from the excitement and look at a book where it’s just business as usual.

30. ULTIMATE X-MEN
Jul 01 #8 – 99,527
Jul 02 #20 – 92,927
Jul 03 #35 – 109,687
Jul 04 #49 – 93,572
======
Jul 05 #61 – 87,094 (+10.8%)
Aug 05 #62 – 76,229 (-12.5%)
Sep 05 #63 – 74,760 ( -1.9%)
Oct 05 #64 – 75,118 ( +0.5%)
Nov 05 #65 – 74,264 ( -1.1%)
Dec 05 —
Jan 06 #66 – 73,720 ( -0.7%)
Feb 06 #67 – 72,700 ( -1.4%)
Mar 06 #68 – 72,765 ( +0.1%)
Apr 06 #69 – 73,188 ( +0.6%)
May 06 #70 – 72,235 ( -1.3%)
Jun 06 #71 – 71,314 ( -1.3%)
Jul 06 #72 – 70,593 ( -1.0%)
6 mnth ( -4.2%)
1 year (-18.9%)
2 year (-24.6%)
3 year (-35.6%)

Well, that was nice.

Now, back to CIVIL WAR.

31. BLACK PANTHER
Jul 01 #34 – 19,876
Jul 02 #47 – 19,185
Jul 03 #62 – 15,774
======
Jul 05 #6 – 35,256 ( -5.7%)
Aug 05 #7 – 42,905 ( +21.7%)
Sep 05 #8 – 46,239 ( +7.8%)
Oct 05 #9 – 40,173 ( -13.1%)
Nov 05 #10 – 31,987 ( -20.4%)
Dec 05 #11 – 29,327 ( -8.3%)
Jan 06 #12 – 27,933 ( -4.7%)
Feb 06 #13 – 26,054 ( -6.7%)
Mar 06 #14 – 28,809 ( +10.6%)
Apr 06 #15 – 28,361 ( -1.6%)
May 06 #16 – 28,091 ( -1.0%)
Jun 06 #17 – 27,993 ( -0.3%)
Jul 06 #18 – 69,912 (+149.7%)
6 mnth (+150.3%)
1 year ( +98.3%)
2 year ( — )
3 year (+343.2%)

This is the wedding of Storm and the Black Panther, and the sales increase is enormous. But is it due to the wedding, or to the CIVIL WAR tie-in? Given the lacklustre sales on this storyline to date, and the fact that other low-selling books have seen similar climbs on the back of the crossover, I’m going to go out on a limb and say it’s 90% CIVIL WAR. Marvel have just announced a belated CIVIL WAR tie-in for upcoming issues.

33. X-FACTOR
Dec 05 #1 – 64,861
Dec 05 #2 – 52,705 (-18.7%)
Jan 06 —
Feb 06 #3 – 48,307 ( -8.3%)
Mar 06 #4 – 48,183 ( -0.3%)
Mar 06 #5 – 46,490 ( -3.5%)
Apr 06 #6 – 45,220 ( -2.7%)
May 06 #7 – 44,315 ( -2.0%)
Jun 06 #8 – 65,150 (+47.0%)
Jul 06 #9 – 68,799 ( +5.6%)
6 mnth (+42.4%)

The second half of X-FACTOR’s CIVIL WAR tie-in, and sales go up even more. Issue #8 picks up reorders of 6,019. The ongoing storylines have continued more or less as normal, so at least crossover readers have had a chance to see what the title is normally like. It’ll be interesting to see whether it holds on to any sales gain.

36. SENSATIONAL SPIDER-MAN
Jul 04 #4 – 75,508
======
Jul 05 #16 – 50,876 ( -6.0%)
Aug 05 #17 – 48,555 ( -4.6%)
Sep 05 #18 – 47,654 ( -1.9%)
Oct 05 #19 – 75,461 (+58.4%)
Nov 05 #20 – 73,262 ( -2.9%)
Dec 05 #21 – 76,763 ( +4.8%)
Jan 06 #22 – 74,923 ( -2.4%)
Feb 06 #23 – 59,051 (-21.2%)
Mar 06 #24 – 53,910 ( -8.7%)
Apr 06 #25 – 51,992 ( -3.6%)
May 06 #26 – 52,496 ( +1.0%)
Jun 06 #27 – 50,721 ( -3.4%)
Jul 06 #28 – 58,532 (+15.4%)
6 mnth (-21.9%)
1 year (+15.0%)
2 year (-22.5%)

Not technically a CIVIL WAR tie-in, but the next best thing – this is a story about Spider-Man unmasking, which happened in CIVIL WAR. The original solicitation was obscure in order to avoid spoiling the plot (although in fairness, it was perfectly accurate and did indicate a loose Civil War tie-in). The title is duly rewarded with a significant sales boost.

38. CABLE & DEADPOOL
Jul 04 #5 – 32,594
======
Jul 05 #17 – 34,393 ( +39.7%)
Aug 05 #18 – 25,304 ( -26.4%)
Sep 05 #19 – 25,298 ( -0.0%)
Sep 05 #20 – 24,982 ( -1.2%)
Oct 05 #21 – 25,030 ( +0.2%)
Nov 05 #22 – 23,746 ( -5.1%)
Dec 05 #23 – 23,296 ( -1.9%)
Jan 06 #24 – 23,542 ( +1.1%)
Feb 06 #25 – 22,918 ( -2.7%)
Mar 06 #26 – 25,584 ( +11.6%)
Apr 06 #27 – 26,153 ( +2.2%)
May 06 #28 – 25,665 ( -1.9%)
Jun 06 #29 – 25,368 ( -1.2%)
Jul 06 #30 – 56,818 (+124.0%)
6 mnth (+141.3%)
1 year ( +65.2%)
2 year ( +74.3%)

CIVIL WAR tie-in, and another massive increase as a low-selling book leapfrogs up the charts to take its moment in the sun. And it’s not the only one…

39. THUNDERBOLTS
Jul 01 #54 – 34,338
Jul 02 #67 – 28,133
Jul 03 #81 – 17,211
======
Jul 05 #10 – 25,978 ( -4.8%)
Aug 05 #11 – 37,036 ( +42.6%)
Sep 05 #12 – 25,912 ( -30.0%)
Oct 05 #13 – 29,250 ( +12.9%)
Oct 05 #14 – 27,864 ( -4.7%)
Nov 05 #15 – 25,245 ( -9.4%)
Dec 05 #16 – 25,084 ( -0.6%)
Jan 06 #17 – 23,417 ( -6.7%)
Feb 06 #18 – 23,735 ( +1.4%)
Mar 06 #100 – 26,798 ( +12.9%)
Apr 06 #101 – 24,170 ( -9.8%)
May 06 #102 – 23,741 ( -1.8%)
Jun 06 #103 – 60,823 (+156.2%)
Jul 06 #104 – 54,092 ( -11.1%)
6 mnth (+131.0%)
1 year (+108.2%)
2 year ( — )
3 year (+214.3%)

THUNDERBOLTS has a whole CIVIL WAR tie-in storyline, and issue #103 picks up 12,765 in reorders thanks in large part to a variant cover. It’s been many, many years since THUNDERBOLTS was regularly selling at these lofty heights.

44. DAREDEVIL
Jul 01 #20 – 54,860
Jul 02 #35 – 50,045
Jul 03 #49 – 50,165
Jul 04 #62 – 52,936
======
Jul 05 #75 – 47,800 ( -0.8%)
Aug 05 #76 – 46,424 ( -2.9%)
Sep 05 #77 – 45,945 ( -1.0%)
Oct 05 #78 – 45,071 ( -1.9%)
Nov 05 #79 – 44,250 ( -1.8%)
Dec 05 #80 – 43,309 ( -2.1%)
Jan 06 #81 – 44,252 ( +2.2%)
Feb 06 #82 – 53,058 (+19.9%)
Mar 06 #83 – 46,804 (-11.8%)
Apr 06 #84 – 47,123 ( +0.7%)
May 06 #85 – 47,899 ( +1.6%)
Jun 06 #86 – 48,280 ( +0.8%)
Jul 06 #87 – 49,436 ( +2.4%)
6 mnth (+11.7%)
1 year ( +3.4%)
2 year ( -6.6%)
3 year ( -1.4%)

Not a CIVIL WAR crossover, not a stunt of any sort. It’s just climbing because people like it.

45. INCREDIBLE HULK
Jul 01 #30 – 34,408
Jul 02 #43 – 48,077
Jul 03 #57 – 64,959
Jul 04 #74 – 43,383
======
Jul 05 #83 – 63,881 (+47.7%)
Jul 05 #84 – 58,583 ( -8.3%)
Aug 05 #85 – 53,177 ( -9.2%)
Sep 05 #86 – 52,992 ( -0.3%)
Oct 05 #87 – 42,454 (-19.9%)
Nov 05 #88 – 41,141 ( -3.1%)
Nov 05 #89 – 39,635 ( -3.7%)
Dec 05 #90 – 36,924 ( -6.8%)
Jan 06 #91 – 35,980 ( -2.6%)
Feb 06 #92 – 53,661 (+49.1%)
Mar 06 #93 – 47,437 (-11.6%)
Apr 06 #94 – 47,966 ( +1.1%)
May 06 #95 – 49,089 ( +2.3%)
Jun 06 —
Jul 06 #96 – 49,209 ( +0.2%)
6 mnth (+36.8%)
1 year (-23.0%)
2 year (+13.4%)
3 year (-24.2%)

Also gathering momentum as the “Planet Hulk” storyline proceeds, though once again it’s worth remembering that these are not exceptionally high sales by the standards of the last few years.

46. FRIENDLY NEIGHBORHOOD SPIDER-MAN
Oct 05 #1 – 100,430
Nov 05 #2 – 82,988 (-17.4%)
Dec 05 #3 – 81,309 ( -2.0%)
Jan 06 #4 – 78,672 ( -3.2%)
Feb 06 —
Mar 06 #5 – 59,900 (-23.9%)
Mar 06 #6 – 58,853 ( -1.7%)
Apr 06 #7 – 55,381 ( -5.9%)
May 06 #8 – 53,910 ( -2.7%)
Jun 06 #9 – 50,177 ( -6.9%)
Jul 06 #10 – 48,902 ( -2.5%)
6 mnth (-37.8%)

Quietly declining. Don’t worry, there’s a loose CIVIL WAR tie-in next month.

47. CAPTAIN AMERICA
Jul 01 #45 – 36,551
Jul 02 #4 – 65,631
Jul 03 #15 – 45,520
Jul 04 #29 – 40,221
======
Jul 05 —
Aug 05 #8 – 51,842 ( +9.9%)
Aug 05 #9 – 44,638 (-13.9%)
Sep 05 #10 – 52,609 (+17.9%)
Oct 05 #11 – 45,162 (-14.2%)
Nov 05 #12 – 45,038 ( -0.3%)
Dec 05 #13 – 44,954 ( -0.2%)
Jan 05 —
Feb 06 #14 – 44,041 ( -0.2%)
Feb 06 #15 – 43,350 ( -1.6%)
Mar 06 #16 – 44,717 ( +3.2%)
Apr 06 #17 – 45,541 ( +1.8%)
May 06 #18 – 46,740 ( +2.6%)
Jun 06 #19 – 47,315 ( +1.2%)
Jul 06 #20 – 47,357 ( +0.1%)
6 mnth ( +7.5%)
1 year ( -8.7%)
2 year (+17.7%)
3 year ( +4.0%)

Like DAREDEVIL, this is an Ed Brubaker title slowly climbing the charts simply because people like it. How old fashioned.

50. SQUADRON SUPREME
Jul 04 #11 – 63,007
======
Jul 05 —
Aug 05 #18 – 50,594 ( -3.2%)
Sep 05 —
Oct 05 —
Nov 05 —
Dec 05 —
Jan 06 —
Feb 06 —
Mar 06 #1 – 61,625 (+21.8%)
Apr 06 #2 – 51,197 (-16.9%)
May 06 #3 – 49,205 ( -3.9%)
Jun 06 #4 – 48,035 ( -1.8%)
Jul 06 #5 – 46,029 ( -4.2%)
6 mnth ( — )
1 year ( -9.0%)
2 year (-26.9%)

Still dropping, and now comfortably below the sales of the previous run. This relaunch has unequivocally failed in its mission to boost sales by dropping the “mature readers” tag. Mind you, it probably hasn’t done any harm in the long run either.

55. NEW X-MEN
Jul 03 #3 – 43,614
Jul 04 #3 – 55,304
======
Jul 05 #16 – 49,217 (+44.7%)
Aug 05 #17 – 43,908 (-10.8%)
Sep 05 #18 – 43,286 ( -1.4%)
Oct 05 #19 – 41,691 ( -3.7%)
Nov 05 #20 – 59,466 (+42.6%)
Dec 05 #21 – 43,473 (-26.9%)
Jan 06 #22 – 42,923 ( -1.3%)
Feb 06 #23 – 41,463 ( -3.4%)
Mar 06 #24 – 42,044 ( +1.4%)
Apr 06 #25 – 40,176 ( -4.4%)
May 06 #26 – 40,073 ( -0.3%)
Jun 06 #27 – 39,785 ( -0.7%)
Jul 06 #28 – 39,771 ( -0.0%)
6 mnth ( -7.3%)
1 year (-19.2%)
2 year (-28.1%)
3 year ( -8.8%)

Pretty much level.

56. ANNIHILATION: SILVER SURFER
Apr 06 #1 (of 4) – 49,120
May 06 #2 (of 4) – 44,230 (-10.0%)
Jun 06 #3 (of 4) – 41,637 ( -5.9%)
Jul 06 #4 (of 4) – 39,181 ( -5.9%)

The highest of the four ANNIHILATION miniseries, all of which concluded in July. Considering that some of the characters involved are distinctly D-list, the books have delivered solid sales in a crowded market. The core ANNIHILATION miniseries is unlikely to be a runaway hit, but it should perform respectably.

57. MS MARVEL
Mar 06 #1 – 73,407
Apr 06 #2 – 46,204 (-37.1%)
May 06 #3 – 43,048 ( -6.8%)
Jun 06 #4 – 40,627 ( -5.6%)
Jul 06 #5 – 38,874 ( -4.3%)

Still not finding its level. But there’s a CIVIL WAR tie-in in August.

59. IRON MAN
Jul 01 #44 – 40,498
Jul 02 #57 – 35,992
Jul 03 #70 – 32,208
Jul 04 #86 – 34,520
======
Jul 05 —
Aug 05 #4 – 48,403 ( -5.8%)
Sep 05 —
Oct 05 —
Nov 05 —
Dec 05 —
Jan 06 #5 – 45,243 ( -6.5%)
Feb 06 —
Mar 06 #6 – 40,264 (-11.0%)
Apr 06 #7 – 49,404 (+22.7%)
May 06 #8 – 38,860 (-21.3%)
Jun 06 #9 – 37,650 ( -3.1%)
Jul 06 #10 – 38,102 ( +1.2%)
6 mnth (-15.8%)
1 year (-21.3%)
2 year (+10.4%)
3 year (+18.3%)

Fluctuating around the 38K mark. Despite all the effort Marvel put into the book, IRON MAN is really just back where it was four or five years ago. The solo title hasn’t yet caught up with CIVIL WAR, though, so there could still be a big surge of interest when his major role in the crossover becomes a factor.

62. NEW EXCALIBUR
Nov 05 #1 – 58,333
Dec 05 #2 – 48,816 (-16.3%)
Jan 06 #3 – 47,196 ( -3.3%)
Feb 06 #4 – 45,071 ( -4.5%)
Mar 06 #5 – 43,523 ( -3.4%)
Apr 06 #6 – 40,687 ( -6.5%)
May 06 #7 – 38,744 ( -4.8%)
Jun 06 #8 – 37,428 ( -3.4%)
Jul 06 #9 – 36,466 ( -2.6%)
6 mnth (-22.7%)

The first fill-in story by Frank Tieri, and the change of writer doesn’t seem to make much difference – the book continues on its existing, and seemingly inexorable, decline.

65. BEYOND!
Jul 06 #1 (of 6) – 35,728

Curious sequel to SECRET WAR featuring Spider-Man and a bunch of C-listers. (The second Kraven? The Hood? Gravity?) A good solid debut, all things considered.

67. ANNIHILATION: NOVA
Apr 06 #1 (of 4) – 42,458
May 06 #2 (of 4) – 39,602 (-6.7%)
Jun 06 #3 (of 4) – 36,663 (-7.4%)
Jul 06 #4 (of 4) – 35,194 (-4.0%)

More ANNIHILATION. See above, really.

69. PUNISHER
Jul 01 #2 – 79,276
Jul 02 #14 – 45,156
Jul 03 #29 – 38,849
Jul 04 #9 – 46,882
======
Jul 05 #23 – 37,376 ( -1.2%)
Aug 05 #24 – 37,022 ( -0.9%)
Sep 05 #25 – 37,149 ( +0.3%)
Oct 05 #26 – 36,450 ( -1.9%)
Nov 05 #27 – 36,072 ( -1.0%)
Dec 05 #28 – 35,535 ( -1.5%)
Jan 05 #29 – 34,708 ( -2.3%)
Feb 06 #30 – 34,293 ( -1.2%)
Mar 06 #31 – 34,505 ( +0.6%)
Apr 06 #32 – 34,076 ( -1.2%)
May 06 #33 – 34,480 ( +1.2%)
Jun 06 #34 – 34,161 ( -0.9%)
Jul 06 #35 – 34,116 ( -0.1%)
6 mnth ( -1.7%)
1 year ( -8.7%)
2 year (-27.2%)
3 year (-12.2%)

Rock solid.

72. ANNIHILATION: SUPER-SKRULL
Apr 06 #1 (of 4) – 42,779
May 06 #2 (of 4) – 38,327 (-10.4%)
Jun 06 #3 (of 4) – 35,576 ( -7.2%)
Jul 06 #4 (of 4) – 33,593 ( -5.6%)

Another ANNIHILATION miniseries. This is a slightly mysterious one, since it doesn’t seem to feed into the main title at all.

76. EXILES
Jul 01 #2 – 52,389
Jul 02 #15 – 38,955
Jul 03 #29 – 40,696
Jul 04 #49 – 37,184
======
Jul 05 #66 – 34,092 ( -1.1%)
Jul 05 #67 – 33,751 ( -1.0%)
Aug 05 #68 – 33,815 ( +0.2%)
Sep 05 #69 – 43,794 (+29.5%)
Sep 05 #70 – 42,434 ( -3.1%)
Oct 05 #71 – 41,131 ( -3.1%)
Nov 05 #72 – 34,329 (-16.5%)
Nov 05 #73 – 34,008 ( -0.9%)
Dec 05 #74 – 33,881 ( -0.4%)
Jan 06 #75 – 33,485 ( -1.2%)
Jan 06 #76 – 32,843 ( -1.9%)
Feb 06 #77 – 32,998 ( +0.5%)
Mar 06 #78 – 33,506 ( +1.5%)
Apr 06 #79 – 34,119 ( +1.8%)
May 06 #80 – 34,039 ( -0.2%)
May 06 #81 – 33,908 ( -0.4%)
Jun 06 #82 – 33,342 ( -1.7%)
Jun 06 #83 – 33,143 ( -0.6%)
Jul 06 #84 – 32,866 ( -0.8%)
6 mnth ( +0.1%)
1 year ( -3.6%)
2 year (-11.6%)
3 year (-19.2%)

Still hovering in its usual range.

78. ANNIHILATION: RONAN
Apr 06 #1 (of 4) – 39,010
May 06 #2 (of 4) – 36,311 (-6.9%)
Jun 06 #3 (of 4) – 33,074 (-8.9%)
Jul 06 #4 (of 4) – 31,719 (-4.1%)

The final ANNIHILATION miniseries.

83. SHE-HULK
Jul 04 #5 – 25,788
======
Oct 05 #1 – 37,220 ( +60.4%)
Nov 05 #2 – 31,610 ( -15.1%)
Dec 05 #3 – 29,428 ( -6.9%)
Jan 06 #4 – 28,214 ( -4.1%)
Feb 06 #5 – 27,183 ( -3.7%)
Mar 06 #6 – 26,631 ( -2.0%)
Apr 06 —
May 06 #7 – 26,561 ( -0.3%)
May 06 #8 – 58,053 (+118.6%)
Jun 06 —
Jul 06 #9 – 29,902 ( -48.5%)
6 mnth ( +6.0%)
1 year ( — )
2 year ( +16.0%)

This is actually the June issue, shipping a month late. Issue #8 was a CIVIL WAR tie-in, but the book has at least held on to a couple of thousand sales. The tie-in issue picks up re-orders of 14,241 thanks to a variant cover.

92. RUNAWAYS
Jul 03 #4 – 20,246
Jul 04 —
======
Jul 05 #6 – 27,365 ( -3.7%)
Aug 05 #7 – 27,063 ( -1.1%)
Sep 05 #8 – 26,954 ( -0.4%)
Oct 05 #9 – 26,800 ( -0.6%)
Nov 05 #10 – 25,761 ( -3.9%)
Dec 05 #11 – 25,260 ( -1.9%)
Jan 06 #12 – 24,989 ( -1.1%)
Feb 06 #13 – 24,313 ( -2.7%)
Mar 06 #14 – 24,536 ( +0.9%)
Apr 06 #15 – 24,046 ( -2.0%)
May 06 #16 – 23,842 ( -0.8%)
Jun 06 #17 – 23,654 ( -0.8%)
Jul 06 #18 – 24,678 ( +4.3%)
6 mnth ( -1.2%)
1 year ( -9.8%)
2 year ( — )
3 year (+21.9%)

A slight uptick for the last issue in the storyline, promising (and delivering) the death of a main character. With the demise of THING and MARVEL TEAM-UP, this is now the lowest-selling ongoing Marvel Universe title – unless you count NEXTWAVE, which didn’t ship this month but would probably have been further down.

97. LAST PLANET STANDING
May 06 #1 (of 5) – 32,232
May 06 #2 (of 5) – 29,165 (-9.6%)
Jun 06 #3 (of 5) – 26,447 (-9.3%)
Jun 06 #4 (of 5) – 25,529 (-3.5%)
Jul 06 #5 (of 5) – 23,486 (-8.0%)

Good numbers for the MC2 miniseries, which has curiously managed to outsell parent title SPIDER-GIRL throughout its run.

99. POWERS
Jul 01 #14 – 26,712
Jul 02 #23 – 26,875
Jul 03 —
Jul 04 #1 – 40,387
======
Jul 05 —
Aug 05 #12 – 30,290 ( +9.3%)
Sep 05 —
Oct 05 #13 – 26,535 (-12.4%)
Nov 05 #14 – 26,109 ( -1.6%)
Dec 05 #15 – 25,633 ( -1.8%)
Jan 06 —
Feb 06 #16 – 24,924 ( -2.8%)
Mar 06 #17 – 24,139 ( -3.1%)
Apr 06 —
May 06 #18 – 23,617 ( -2.2%)
Jun 06 —
Jul 06 #19 – 23,156 ( -1.9%)
6 mnth ( -7.1%)
1 year (-23.6%)
2 year (-42.7%)

Slipping, but very slowly.

101. SPIDER-GIRL
Jul 01 #36 – 24,215
Jul 02 #49 – 24,849
Jul 03 #62 – 23,104
Jul 04 #76 – 22,157
======
Jul 05 #88 – 18,983 ( -3.2%)
Aug 05 #89 – 18,538 ( -2.3%)
Sep 05 #90 – 18,344 ( -1.0%)
Oct 05 #91 – 18,159 ( -1.0%)
Nov 05 #92 – 17,597 ( -3.1%)
Dec 05 #93 – 17,057 ( -3.1%)
Jan 06 #94 – 17,148 ( +0.5%)
Feb 06 #95 – 16,778 ( -2.2%)
Mar 06 #96 – 16,739 ( -0.2%)
Apr 06 #97 – 17,508 ( +4.6%)
May 06 #98 – 17,738 ( +1.3%)
Jun 06 #99 – 17,915 ( +1.0%)
Jul 06 #100 – 22,691 (+26.7%)
6 mnth (+32.3%)
1 year (+19.5%)
2 year ( +2.4%)
3 year ( -1.8%)

Cancelled, but it gets an anniversary boost with its final issue. The book is relaunched in October as AMAZING SPIDER-GIRL, following yet another last-minute reprieve.

103. STORM
Feb 06 #1 (of 6) – 32,831
Mar 06 #2 (of 6) – 25,905 (-21.1%)
Apr 06 #3 (of 6) – 24,214 ( -6.5%)
May 06 #4 (of 6) – 22,513 ( -7.0%)
Jun 06 #5 (of 6) – 21,840 ( -3.0%)
Jul 06 #6 (of 6) – 21,510 ( -1.5%)

Depends how you look at it, really. This is part of the set-up for the alleged “Wedding of the Century” between Storm and the Black Panther, and the sales aren’t that great for a big event comic. On the other hand, it’s a romance comic set in the past, and judged by those standards, the numbers are quite respectable.

107. THING
Nov 05 #1 – 30,188
Dec 05 #2 – 23,606 (-21.8%)
Jan 06 #3 – 21,839 ( -7.5%)
Feb 06 #4 – 21,190 ( -3.0%)
Mar 06 #5 – 20,348 ( -4.0%)
Apr 06 #6 – 20,577 ( +1.1%)
May 06 #7 – 19,592 ( -4.8%)
Jun 06 —
Jul 06 #8 – 20,363 ( +3.9%)
6 mnth ( -6.8%)

Axed.

109. OFFICIAL HANDBOOK OF THE MARVEL UNIVERSE
Jul 04 Avengers
– 28,791

======
Jul 05 Avengers – 23,668 ( +7.7%)
Aug 05 Ultimate – 25,436 ( +7.5%)
Sep 05 Alt Universes – 18,680 (-26.6%)
Oct 05 Horror – 15,849 (-15.2%)
Nov 05 X-Men – 22,986 (+45.0%)
Dec 05 Ultimates – 20,795 ( -9.5%)
Jan 06 #1 (of 12) – 23,423 (+12.6%)
Feb 06 #2 (of 12) – 21,828 ( -6.8%)
Mar 06 #3 (of 12) – 21,681 ( -0.7%)
Apr 06 #4 (of 12) – 21,531 ( -0.7%)
May 06 #5 (of 12) – 21,331 ( -0.9%)
Jun 06 #6 (of 12) – 20,731 ( -2.8%)
Jul 06 #7 (of 12) – 20,124 ( -2.9%)
6 mnth (-14.1%)
1 year (-15.0%)
2 year (-30.1%)

A very slow decline seems to be setting in, but overall the A TO Z miniseries has proved surprisingly stable.

110. PLANET HULK GLADIATOR GUIDEBOOK
Jul 06 Gladiator Guidebook – 20,022

Tie-in to the current HULK storyline. A good number, when you consider that it’s about 40% of the parent title’s sales.

114. X-MEN: FAIRY TALES
May 06 #1 (of 4) – 22,922
Jun 06 #2 (of 4) – 18,817 (-17.9%)
Jul 06 #3 (of 4) – 18,103 ( -3.8%)

Levelling out quite nicely.

115. MARVEL TEAM-UP
Jun 05 #9 – 23,530 ( -3.0%)
Jul 05 #10 – 22,549 ( -4.2%)
Aug 05 #11 – 22,150 ( -1.8%)
Sep 05 #12 – 21,240 ( -4.1%)
Oct 05 #13 – 21,048 ( -0.9%)
Nov 05 #14 – 26,200 (+24.5%)
Dec 05 #15 – 20,000 (-23.7%)
Jan 06 #16 – 19,955 ( -0.2%)
Feb 06 #17 – 19,422 ( -2.7%)
Mar 06 #18 – 18,944 ( -2.5%)
Apr 06 #19 – 19,891 ( +5.0%)
May 06 #20 – 18,843 ( -5.3%)
Jun 06 #21 – 18,397 ( -2.4%)
Jul 06 #22 – 17,944 ( –
2.5%)
6 mnth (-10.1%)
1 year (-23.7%)

Axed with issue #25.

117. FANTASTIC FOUR: FIRST FAMILY
Mar 06 #1 (of 6) – 26,435
Apr 06 #2 (of 6) – 21,444 (-18.9%)
May 06 #3 (of 6) – 19,314 ( -9.9%)
Jun 06 #4 (of 6) – 17,761 ( -8.0%)
Jul 06 #5 (of 6) – 16,921 ( -4.7%)

121. FURY: PEACEMAKER
Feb 06 #1 (of 6) – 27,423
Mar 06 #2 (of 6) – 21,612 (-21.2%)
Apr 06 #3 (of 6) – 19,177 (-11.3%)
May 06 #4 (of 6) – 18,379 ( -4.2%)
Jun 06 #5 (of 6) – 16,981 ( -7.6%)
Jul 06 #6 (of 6) – 16,581 ( -2.4%)

Two underperforming miniseries that should have done better given the creators involved.

123. ARES
Jan 06 #1 (of 5) – 20,541
Feb 06 #2 (of 5) – 16,884 (-17.8%)
Mar 06 #3 (of 5) – 15,895 (-14.4%)
Apr 06 —
May 06 #4 (of 5) – 16,255 ( +2.3%)
Jun 06 —
Jul 06 #5 (of 5) – 15,786 ( -2.9%)
6 mnth (-23.1%)

Belatedly tying up the miniseries, which doesn’t seem to have gained particularly from the promise that Ares would join a major Marvel Universe team.

150. HAUNT OF HORROR: EDGAR ALLAN POE
May 06 #1 (of 3) – 14,517
Jun 06 #2 (of 3) – 12,497 (-13.9%)
Jul 06 #3 (of 3) – 11,561 ( -7.5%)

A book like this probably has half an eye on the bookstores, so the sales aren’t a major concern. It’s also a $3.99 book.

154. DAUGHTERS OF THE DRAGON
Jan 06 #1 (of 6) – 17,522
Feb 06 —
Mar 06 #2 (of 6) – 13,256 (-24.3%)
Mar 06 #3 (of 6) – 12,104 ( -8.7%)
Apr 06 #4 (of 6) – 11,604 ( -4.1%)
May 06 #5 (of 6) – 11,164 ( -3.8%)
Jun 06 —
Jul 06 #6 (of 6) – 11,164 ( n/c )
6 mnth (-36.3%)

Not a promising start for the HEROES FOR HIRE ongoing title, which spins off from this book.

166. MARVEL ADVENTURES AVENGERS
May 06 #1 – 13,891
Jun 06 #2 – 9,359 (-32.7%)
Jul 06 #3 – 9,006 ( -3.8%)

Levelling out, at least. As always, the direct market sales of MARVEL ADVENTURES books don’t matter because they’re aimed at another audience.

173,178. MARVEL WESTERNS
Jun 06 Two-Gun Kid – 11,257
Jun 06 Outlaw Files – 7,285
Jul 06 Kid Colt/Arizona Girl – 8,597
Jul 06 Western Legends – 8,268

Complete lack of interest. And now, the obligatory string of all-ages titles that do most of their business outside the direct market.

177. FRANKLIN RICHARDS, SON OF A GENIUS
Jul 06 Super Summer Spectacular – 8,324

191. SPIDER-MAN LOVES MARY JANE
Jul 04 #2 – 21,619
======
Dec 05 #1 – 11,171
Jan 06 #2 – 8,590 (-23.1%)
Feb 06 #3 – 7,648 (-11.0%)
Mar 06 #4 – 7,672 ( +0.3%)
Apr 06 #5 – 7,165 ( -6.6%)
May 06 #6 – 7,069 ( -1.3%)
Jun 06 #7 – 6,834 ( -3.3%)
Jul 06 #8 – 6,769 ( -1.0%)
6 mnth (-21.2%)
1 year ( — )
2 year (-68.7%)

201. MARVEL ADVENTURES SPIDER-MAN
Jul 05 #5 – 8,075 ( -9.0%)
Aug 05 #6 – 7,636 ( -5.4%)
Sep 05 #7 – 7,199 ( -5.7%)
Oct 05 #8 – 7,088 ( -1.5%)
Nov 05 #9 – 6,637 ( -6.4%)
Dec 05 #10 – 6,391 ( -3.7%)
Jan 06 #11 – 6,107 ( -4.4%)
Feb 06 #12 – 6,087 ( -0.3%)
Mar 06 #13 – 5,899 ( -3.1%)
Apr 06 #14 – 5,970 ( +1.2%)
May 06 #15 – 6,165 ( +3.3%)
Jun 06 #16 – 6,114 ( -0.8%)
Jul 06 #17 – 6,133 ( +0.3%)
6 mnth ( +0.4%)
1 year (-24.0%)

206. AVENGERS & POWER PACK ASSEMBLE!
Apr 06 #1 (of 4) – 7,857
May 06 #2 (of 4) – 6,613 (-15.8%)
Jun 06 #3 (of 4) – 6,137 ( -7.2%)
Jul 06 #4 (of 4) – 5,849 ( -4.7%)

For what it’s worth, at least they’re mostly stable.

207. KABUKI REFLECTIONS
Jul 05 —
Aug 05 #5 – 6,460
Sep 05 —
Oct 05 —
Nov 05 —
Dec 05 —
Jan 06 —
Feb 06 —
Mar 06 —
Apr 06 —
May 06 —
Jun 06 —
Jul 06 #6 – 5,815 (-10.0%)

An Icon book, and again the sales don’t particularly matter. This is an art book rather than part of David Mack’s ongoing series.

At number 209 is a reprint of FANTASTIC FOUR #52, under the banner of “Marvel’s Greatest Comics.” It sells 5,531.

222. MARVEL ADVENTURES FANTASTIC FOUR
Jul 05 #2 – 6,864 (-28.6%)
Aug 05 #3 – 6,447 ( -6.1%)
Sep 05 #4 – 6,064 ( -5.9%)
Oct 05 #5 – 5,969 ( -1.6%)
Nov 05 #6 – 5,522 ( -7.5%)
Dec 05 #7 – 5,058 ( -8.4%)
Jan 06 #8 – 4,834 ( -4.4%)
Feb 06 #9 – 4,711 ( -2.5%)
Mar 06 #10 – 4,663 ( -1.0%)
Apr 06 #11 – 4,526 ( -2.9%)
May 06 #12 – 4,836 ( +6.8%)
Jun 06 #13 – 4,752 ( -1.7%)
Jul 06 #14 – 4,668 ( -1.8%)
6 mnth ( -3.4%)
1 year (-32.0%)

See above.

234. MARVEL SPOTLIGHT
Dec 05 Cassaday/McKeever – 9,763
Jan 06 Ellis/Cheung – 6,843 ( -29.9%)
Feb 06 Whedon/Lark – 5,947 ( -13.1%)
Mar 06 Finch/Sacasa – 4,146 ( -30.3%)
Apr 06 Way/Coipel – 3,309 ( -20.2%)
May 06 —
Jun 06 Millar/McNiven – 7,668 (+131.7%)
Jun 06 Gaiman/Larroca – 5,449 ( -28.9%)
Jul 06 Kirkman/Land – 3,963 ( -27.3%)
6 mnth ( -42.1%)

Back to the lowly normal sales levels. I’m told that this book actually does quite well outside the direct market, which is why it’s still around despite the seemingly awful numbers.

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

ASTONISHING X-MEN
Jul 04 #3 – 129,362
======
Jul 05 #11 – 127,768 (-18.3%)
Aug 05 #12 – 134,693 ( +5.4%)
Sep 05 —
Oct 05 —
Nov 05 —
Dec 05 —
Jan 06 —
Feb 06 #13 – 148,244 (+10.1%)
Mar 06 —
Apr 06 #14 – 124,129 (-16.3%)
May 06 —
Jun 06 #15 – 119,991 ( -3.3%)
Jul 06 —

Bimonthly.

ULTIMATE WOLVERINE VS HULK
Dec 05 #1 (of 6) – 115,492
Jan 06 —
Feb 06 #2 (of 6) – 105,770 (-8.4%)
Mar 06 —
Apr 06 —
May 06 —
Jun 06 —
Jul 06 —

Issue #3 has, at various times, been scheduled for 19 April, 17 May, 12 July, 9 August and now 20 September. (And they wonder why I don’t believe their CIVIL WAR schedule.)

ULTIMATES
Jul 02 —
Jul 03 #11 – 103,192
Jul 04 —
======
Jul 05 #7 – 99,134 ( -2.8%)
Aug 05 —
Sep 05 #8 – 95,980 ( -3.2%)
Oct 05 —
Nov 05 —
Dec 05 #9 – 94,493 ( -1.5%)
Jan 06 —
Feb 06 —
Mar 06 #10 – 94,900 ( +0.4%)
Apr 06 —
May 06 —
Jun 06 #11 – 96,751 ( +2.0%)
Jul 06 —

Late.

FANTASTIC FOUR
Jul 01 #45 – 51,686
Jul 02 #58 – 42,661
Jul 03 #501 – 56,002
Jul 04 #516 – 48,580
======
Jul 05 #529 – 52,963 ( -5.3%)
Aug 05 #530 – 51,782 ( -2.2%)
Sep 05 #531 – 49,745 ( -3.9%)
Oct 05 —
Nov 05 #532 – 47,771 ( -4.0%)
Dec 05 #533 – 46,751 ( -2.1%)
Jan 05 —
Feb 06 #534 – 44,573 ( -4.7%)
Feb 06 #535 – 43,124 ( -3.3%)
Mar 06 #536 – 79,680 (+84.8%)
Apr 06 #537 – 79,576 ( -0.1%)
May 06 —
Jun 06 #538 – 90,196 (+13.3%)
Jul 06 —

Late, although it did ship in August. FANTASTIC FOUR is in the middle of a CIVIL WAR tie-in arc at the moment, and thanks to a variant cover, issue #538 picks up reorders of 12,049.

MOON KNIGHT
Apr 06 #1 – 114,533
May 06 #2 – 77,552 (-32.3%)
Jun 06 #3 – 72,206 ( -6.9%)
Jul 06 —

Late, although once again, it did ship in August. Issue #3 picks up 2,760 re-orders.

DAREDEVIL: FATHER
Jul 05 —
Aug 05 #2 (of 6) – 39,745 (-42.8%)
Sep 05 #3 (of 6) – 37,571 ( -5.5%)
Oct 05 —
Nov 05 #4 (of 6) – 33,562 (-10.7%)
Dec 05 #5 (of 6) – 30,249 ( -9.9%)
Jan 06 —
Feb 06 —
Mar 06 —
Apr 06 —
May 06 —
Jun 06 —
Jul 06 —

Joe Quesada continues to lead by example.

NEXTWAVE: AGENTS OF H.A.T.E.
Jan 06 #1 – 41,041
Feb 06 —
Mar 06 #2 – 29,911 (-27.1%)
Mar 06 #3 – 27,126 ( -9.3%)
Apr 06 #4 – 26,728 ( -1.5%)
May 06 #5 – 30,818 (+15.3%)
Jun 06 #6 – 24,626 (-20.1%)
Jul 06 —

Late.

KABUKI
Jul 05 —
Aug 05 —
Sep 05 —
Oct 05 #5 – 11,420 (-20.3%)
Nov 05 —
Dec 05 —
Jan 06 —
Feb 06 #6 – 11,349 ( -0.6%)
Mar 06 —
Apr 06 —
May 06 —
Jun 06 —
Jul 06 —

KABUKI has an erratic schedule to begin with, but issue #7 is indeed wildly late – it was solicited for May. It’s currently on the schedule for the last week of August.

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

+150.3% – Black Panther
+141.3% – Cable & Deadpool
+131.0% – Thunderbolts
+ 73.5% – Ghost Rider
+ 42.5% – Wolverine
+ 42.4% – X-Factor
+ 36.8% – Incredible Hulk
+ 32.3% – Spider-Girl
+ 24.3% – Ultimate Fantastic Four
+ 16.1% – Amazing Spider-Man
+ 11.7% – Daredevil
+ 11.2% – Uncanny X-Men
+ 11.0% – X-Men
+ 7.5% – Captain America
+ 6.5% – Ultimate Spider-Man
+ 6.0% – She-Hulk
+ 3.4% – New Avengers
+ 0.4% – Marvel Adventures Spider-Man
+ 0.1% – Exiles
– 1.2% – Runaways
– 1.7% – Punisher
– 3.4% – Marvel Adventures Fantastic Four
– 4.2% – Ultimate X-Men
– 6.8% – Thing
– 7.1% – Powers
– 7.3% – New X-Men
– 10.1% – Marvel Team-Up
– 14.1% – Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe
– 15.8% – Iron Man
– 21.2% – Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane
– 21.9% – Sensational Spider-Man
– 22.7% – New Excalibur
– 23.1% – Ares
– 36.3% – Daughters of the Dragon
– 37.8% – Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man
– 42.1% – Marvel Spotlight

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

+108.2% – Thunderbolts
+ 98.3% – Black Panther
+ 65.2% – Cable & Deadpool
+ 55.2% – Amazing Spider-Man
+ 37.3% – Wolverine
+ 19.5% – Spider-Girl
+ 15.0% – Sensational Spider-Man
+ 6.6% – X-Men
+ 3.4% – Daredevil
– 2.3% – Ultimate Spider-Man
– 2.6% – Uncanny X-Men
– 3.6% – Exiles
– 7.5% – Ultimate Fantastic Four
– 8.7% – Captain America
– 8.7% – Punisher
– 9.0% – Squadron Supreme
– 9.8% – Runaways
– 15.0% – Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe
– 18.9% – Ultimate X-Men
– 19.2% – New X-Men
– 21.3% – Iron Man
– 21.5% – New Avengers
– 23.0% – Incredible Hulk
– 23.6% – Powers
– 23.7% – Marvel Team-Up
– 24.0% – Marvel Adventures Spider-Man
– 32.0% – Marvel Adventures Fantastic Four

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

+74.3% – Cable & Deadpool
+58.0% – Wolverine
+33.9% – Amazing Spider-Man
+18.0% – New Avengers
+17.7% – Captain America
+16.0% – She-Hulk
+13.4% – Incredible Hulk
+10.4% – Iron Man
+ 2.4% – Spider-Girl
– 6.6% – Daredevil
– 8.4% – Uncanny X-Men
– 9.1% – Ultimate Fantastic Four
-11.6% – Exiles
-11.7% – X-Men
-22.5% – Sensational Spider-Man
-22.6% – Ultimate Spider-Man
-24.6% – Ultimate X-Men
-26.9% – Squadron Supreme
-27.2% – Punisher
-28.1% – New X-Men
-30.1% – Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe
-42.7% – Powers
-68.7% – Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane

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

+343.2% – Black Panther
+214.3% – Thunderbolts
+ 21.9% – Runaways
+ 18.9% – Amazing Spider-Man
+ 18.3% – Iron Man
+ 16.0% – Wolverine
+ 4.0% – Captain America
– 1.4% – Daredevil
– 1.8% – Spider-Girl
– 5.1% – Uncanny X-Men
– 8.8% – New X-Men
– 12.2% – Punisher
– 17.6% – X-Men
– 19.2% – Exiles
– 24.2% – Incredible Hulk
– 24.4% – Ultimate Spider-Man
– 35.6% – Ultimate X-Men

  1. Civil War may just be attracting a lot of Neil Gaiman’s audience considering that its the [superficially] heavier of the two, and intellectuality is really what NG is known for.

    And honestly, issue 2 was a transionary issue, and not nearly as eye catching inside as #1 was. It will probably work and sell better in the graphic novel, and once #3 comes out.

    Reginald Hudlin choosing the channel he owns [BET] to cover the wedding was prettay shameless… oh well.

  2. Wow, that DUAGHTERS OF THE DRAGON #6 (N/C) — that’s a first isn’t it?

    Never ever seen that on a chart before.

    Keep up the great work, this is essential reading each month!

    Though, I don’t know if it is fair to call 2nd printings “variant covers” — they technically are, yes, but the variant isn’t WHY they went back to press. Plus, David Gabriel gets too little love to begin with.

    -B

  3. Thanks, Brian. It’s tricky to know quite how to deal with variant covers when they account for the entire second printing. On the one hand, a lot of the sales will just be legitimate, normal sales to people buying whatever cover happens to be on the shelves. On the other hand, the variant must be intended to spike collector buys or they wouldn’t waste the money paying for a second cover. It’s hard to separate them out, although I’d be amazed if the variant cover wasn’t playing a significant part. Anyhow, that’s why I just lump them all in together for the grand totals – a sale is a sale, at the end of the day, and breaking it down much beyond that would be speculation.

  4. Very interesting read, thank you for taking the time to write all that out. It’s interesting to see how Marvel is messing up what could be a very important series for their future — in terms of building their business. I know that I’m pretty ticked at their inability to maintain a consistent schedule.

  5. *selling

    sorry missed that it should read:

    Where exactly is Spotlighta selling, Ive never seen a TPB of if and I can’t imagine it being sold in Wal Mart

  6. Nextwave #6 solicited for June, released June 28.
    Nextwave #7 solicited for July, released August 16.
    Nextwave: This is What they Want v1 solicited for August, not yet released.
    Nextwave #8 solicited for September.

    Paul is correct.

  7. “154. DAUGHTERS OF THE DRAGON
    Not a promising start for the HEROES FOR HIRE ongoing title, which spins off from this book.”

    Apparently HEROES FOR HIRE has already sold out its first printing. Amazing what the Civil War trade dress can do for sales.

  8. Oh, just ignore the “Sold out at Diamond” press releases that come out every few days. It’s meaningless unless they tell you how big the overprint was. The print run is set AFTER the initial orders come in, so it doesn’t exactly take a genius to sell out. Most Marvel books (officially, at least) just have a “margin of error” overprint to cover lost and damaged copies. So it doesn’t take very many reorders to sell out!

  9. My point is that the day after release, whatever overprint there was has been eaten up by reorders and Marvel is likely going to go back for a second print, which would indicate to me that there’s more demand for HEROES FOR HIRE than there was for DAUGHTERS OF THE DRAGON. As for how much overprint there was, I’m going to take David Gabriel’s word that it wasn’t insignificant. I’m as jaded as anyone about manufactured sell-outs but considering your own assertion as to how much Civil War has improved sales on tie-ins I thought I’d point out the effect it is likely having on what is essentially a sequel to a low-selling miniseries.

  10. Paul, glad you’re trying to makes things easier to read by removing the repeated titles. Can I suggest that you take a cue from what Marc-Oliver did this month with the DC stats and try using PRE tags? I really find it easier to read when the numbers line up.

  11. “I’m not quite so convinced that Steve McNiven is a personal selling point for CIVIL WAR.”

    Paul, IMO, McNiven’s artwork is a personal (leading) selling point for Civil War in the same way that Phil Jimenez’s artwork was a leading selling point for Infinite Crisis. Yes, the high-concept natures of both series pretty much ensured guaranteed audiences no matter who they put on the books (and Crisis proved that once Jimenez ran into scheduling trouble and DC decided to dilute his artwork by adding additional pencilers and inkers of similar style to pick up the slack — NO ONE liked that solution, which is why pages are getting redrawn for the trade paper back. But make no mistake, Jimenez’s artwork, which evokes that of original Crisis penciller George Perez was indeed a selling point because it further branded the series as a sequel to the original Crisis. McNiven has less personal history to draw on, but make no mistake, he’s probably the biggest draw of the series other than the story itself, which has been surprisingly readable.

    The real problem IMO is that the editorial process is utterly broken — and it’s not CW editor’s Tom Brevoort’s fault. The problem is an overall stupid, unrealistic, untentable, unethical practice of not giving any penciller sufficient lead time to complete enough issues before solicition of the first issue that the book will have maintained its monthly schedule by the last issue (in the case of a miniseries like CW) or by the last issue by that artist of a continuing series (in the case of a delay-plagued regular book like the Ultimates. The delays are ridiculous and both publishers do it, to the extent that if Niven can only turn out a book of this high quality at a rate of six weeks per issue, then CW #1 shouldn’t have been solicited until #4 was entirely in the can, pencils, inks, lettering and all. McNiven needed at least three or four mroe months of lead time and he didn’t get it because at Marvel, like at DC, the tail of marketing wags the dog of publishing. That’s GOT to stop — NOW.

    OTOH, damning-with-faint-praise goes to Brevoort for admitting that the worst case scenario has happened and he’s gone with the most severe delays and reschdules possible due to the controversy. Yes, we have to wait one more month for #4 and thereafter, the rest of the series comes out every other month, with the corresponding tie-in issues correspondingly late, but at least he’s telling the truth rather than lying the way that Todd MacFarlane did by refusing to cancel the orders for over a year’s worth of Spawn until either Eric or Jim told him to knock it off. Breevort’s choice is IMO the best one given that the bad situation exists. We know that CW is now on a more leisurely schedule, that’s fine with me *because* Brevoort and Marvel were so up front about it in the first place. Finally, the honest delays in this book likely won’t hurt it much *because* McNiven is so popular an artist — but also and more importantly, Marvel were so honest to the fans.

    For once.

    It’s quite refreshing, really.

  12. Hey, great idea to run these monthly sales-figure columns on thexaxis.com. Hopefully, you’ll be doing the same here with DC’s statistics as well, like over on comicon.

    Also, it would be nice to see these write ups posted up and delivered each and every month, not just posted every other month or whatnot, y’know?

    (Are these columns posted anywhere else, on a regular basis, or just on the two sites I’m aware of?)

    Great stuff.

    Please keep it coming.

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