In the local cable show covering diversity in comics linked to earlier today, Ms. Marvel editor Sana Amanat was interviewed and she mentioned that “she’s our #1 digital seller.” It’s been mentioned publicly a few times that it’s among Marvel’s best selling digital titles, and over the summer at a Marvel summit it was announced that the first issue had sold more digitally than in print.

Considering that the first issue is now in its 7th printing, that may not still be the case…or it may. You’re more likely to find out the name of Renee Zellweger’s plastic surgeon than digital comics sales figures—although you can do a rolling average using App Annie to track in-app purchases. However it is now an established talking point that Ms. Marvel is a digital hit. It’s print sales are good, but it’s digital where it may be staking its claim as the comic of the moment. It’s also perhaps a teensy hint at why diversifying the audience is not a dirty word any more at the Big Two.


  1. This is awesome news…but the numbers need to be there to prove such a claim. Otherwise, its just that. Seems like Marvel is missing a pretty big PR coup by not highlighting the figures and trumpeting it to the heavens. There must be some hurdle in the way…Diamond? Alienation of print retailers? Comixology itself?

  2. Kyle, Marvel doesn’t announce their specific print numbers, so there’s no reason to think they would announce digital ones either. And I don’t see this as making a claim, per se. They’re not saying Ms. Marvel is necessarily beating any other publishers’s titles… It’s just their own best digital seller. One of their titles would be, obviously.

  3. It seems to me like Marvel isn’t declaring digital numbers lest it become a precedent (i.e. at times when digital isn’t doing so well) and because they can already point to Diamond-reported numbers which declare that Ms. Marvel has been doing perfectly stable in print.

  4. Awesome news, but news that was already known to people who aren’t arbitrarily against the title. Dan Slott stated as much MONTHS ago.

    They likely won’t publish that stuff for a multitude of reasons, least of which it may highlight just how much money they are making off digital.

  5. @ chris: The “sells better in digital than in print” is what was previously reported (exceeding the Diamond-reported print numbers), here it’s an editor calling it their BEST-selling in digital.

  6. Book publishers don’t reveal the sales of books. They might boast about certain books having pasted a certain number but that’s it. Services like Bookscan have built whole business around trying to fill in the holes, but only the publisher knows the total number.

    I doubt we will ever get to a point that comic book publishers will reveal digital sales. Just because the public is curious, doesn’t mean they are going to. Especially when a competitor could learn from these numbers and try to launch titles similar in nature.

  7. @Matthew – you are certainly right, although the irony strikes me that in this case, they COULD release the digital numbers, because the print numbers are already pretty much giving away the information (to a large degree) of what is selling well.

    It’ s not like Marvel doesn’t know that Batman sells.

  8. So does everyone always question whether or not DC and Marvel are honest every time they talk about their better selling comics since they don’t give out all their numbers? Is this a coincidence that it’s happening with a non-white non-guy comic?

    I know the Big 2 are in it for the love of the art rather than the money so it would make sense that they don’t necessarily have a firm grasp on what’s selling well for them :P

  9. @Regular Syzed Mike – well, to be fair, when Marvel normally crows about how something is selling really well, that is also reflected in the numbers we get from Diamond Distributors. It’s just that in this case, we have to take their word for it rather than having an alternate source confirm.

    Not that that should really matter…

  10. Are digital sales that fantastic that being number #1 in what is likely a crowded market assure strong profitability?

    Perhaps instead of asking about someone’s feminist agenda we should ask for real sales numbers.

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