As we did yesterday for the print charts, David Brothers data mines comiXology’s year-end charts. There isn’t that much to go on (only a top 10 in a few categories) but some trends do emerge, including, as with GNs, a preponderance of creator-owned work.
A quick glance at the Comixology’s best-selling comics list reveals something remarkable right off the bat. The only Marvel or DC books on the list are Mark Millar and John Romita Jr’s Kick-Ass, a creator-owned book, Mark Millar and Steve McNiven’s Civil War, a work for hire title, and Neil Gaiman and Sam Kieth’s Sandman, another work for hire book. If you go by the top ten series, the Big Two are responsible for just 30% of ComiXology’s units sold. This is a sharp drop from the 77% they control in the Direct Market.
Further examination of the Top Ten Series on ComiXology reveals even more interesting data. Creator-owned books are 50% of the list. Creator-owned series don’t even show up on Diamond’s top ten list, but I was still curious. I created a chart of the combined Top 300 sales lists from January 2010 to November 2010, covering 3317 comics, to go along with Diamond’s official Top 500 for 2010.
There’s some argument in the comments over whether Brothers is promoting creator-owned stuff, given that both Marvel and DC have their own apps. Brothers argues that ALL the comics are available through comiXology’s home app.
It’s actually very easy to get a minute-by-minute update of what’s selling in individual apps, as the top 10 are available at any given time. As we write this, Mark Millar continues his assault on all media with Civil War trending. (The #9 and #10 books are also Hulk.)
For DC’s, Batman Beyond, their first day-and-date release is doing well, even at $2.99. (The #9 books is an issue of JLA and #10 is Superman: Secret Origin #6.)
Missing from the discussion is one very key element. If you listen to all the digital players talking at the ICv2 conference, most of them say that their sales skew “young.” Archie Comics’ 1.7 million downloads speak to this. Parents increasingly use their dataphones and tablets as babysitters, and buying comics is part of that. Here’s the Archie app’s top sellers:
Which doesn’t explain why Mark Millar is the king of all media, but it’s something to keep in mind.