DC Month to Month Sales: December 2008

by Marc-Oliver Frisch

The question whether the economy has any effect on DC Comics’ periodical output is increasingly difficult to answer. On the one hand, many titles not right at the center of the publisher’s big superhero line are losing units by the truckload, and new series debut with abysmal numbers — case in point in December: Vigilante. Then again, these are trends which have been visible for a while, so what we’re seeing may as well be a continuation of what’s been happening anyway, rather than the result of the current crisis. Of course, it could also be both.

That said, DC’s average periodical sales in the direct market recovered slightly in December, mostly thanks to an issue of Final Crisis and multiple entries by three high-ticket series: There were three issues of Batman and two issues each of Justice League of America and Justice Society of America. Average sales didn’t recover as much as you might have expected, however. One reason for this is the increasing decline mentioned above, another is that a number of series returned to a much lower level, now that the “Batman R.I.P.” event is over.

Vertigo and WildStorm’s average periodical sales were in decline again in December. Whereas the average Vertigo title remains in the 11-12K area, the average WildStorm periodical dropped to yet another historical low point, selling fewer than 9,415 units. We don’t know the exact number because multiple new WildStorm releases again failed to make the Top 300 chart — a rather more recent trend. Their number rose to four in December.

On a technical note, I should mention that the December chart includes books which shipped on January 2, 2009 — not because any of them were late, but because Diamond evidently felt more comfortable with that date. Originally, those titles were expected on December 31, which is presumably why they ended up on the December chart.

See below for the details, and please mind the small print at the end of the column. Thanks to Milton Griepp and ICv2.com for the permission to use their figures. An overview of ICv2.com‘s estimates can be found here.

—–

2 - FINAL CRISIS
05/2008: Final Crisis #1 of 7 -- 144,826          [166,641]
06/2008: Final Crisis #2 of 7 -- 126,082 (-12.9%) [134,116]
07/2008: --
08/2008: Final Crisis #3 of 7 -- 123,881 (- 1.8%)
09/2008: --
10/2008: Final Crisis #4 of 7 -- 115,666 (- 6.6%)
11/2008: --
12/2008: Final Crisis #5 of 7 -- 109,181 (- 5.6%)
----------------
6 months: -13.4%

Final Crisis is continuing a fairly smooth drop-off for a blockbuster miniseries. As usual, the book was promoted through a 50/50 variant-cover edition.

For comparison, Marvel’s Secret Invasion #8, which topped the December chart, sold an estimated 152,429 units, which is more than even the debut issue of Final Crisis managed in its first month. That’s quite another ballpark, obviously.


—–

6/7/13 - BATMAN

12/2001: Batman #598 --  40,496*

12/2002: Batman #610 -- 109,415*

12/2003: Batman #622 --  91,899 [94,045]

12/2004: Batman #635 --  60,898 [63,067]

12/2005: Batman #648 --  63,151 [64,760]

12/2006: Batman #660 --  76,967 

12/2006: Batman #661 --  75,512

-------------------------------

12/2007: Batman #672 --  71,189 (- 7.3%)

01/2008: Batman #673 --  69,234 (- 2.8%)

02/2008: Batman #674 --  68,208 (- 1.5%)

03/2008: --

04/2008: Batman #675 --  71,138 (+ 4.3%)

05/2008: Batman #676 -- 105,039 (+47.9%) [122,877]

05/2008: Batman #677 --  96,116 (- 8.5%) [111,065]

06/2008: --

07/2008: Batman #678 -- 103,213 (+ 7.4%)

08/2008: Batman #679 -- 103,588 (+ 0.4%)

09/2008: --

10/2008: Batman #680 -- 103,941 (+ 0.3%)

11/2008: Batman #681 -- 103,151 (- 0.8%) [114,657]

12/2008: Batman #682 --  93,469 (- 9.4%)

12/2008: Batman #683 --  90,272 (- 3.4%)

12/2008: Batman #684 --  79,953 (-11.4%)

----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  : +23.5%

2 years : +15.3%

5 years : - 4.4%

If there’s any backlash against the anti-climactic ending of “Batman R.I.P.,” the numbers don’t show it yet. On the contrary: Issue #681, the storyline’s final part, sold another whopping 11,506 units in December, charting at the No. 202 spot.

Meanwhile, there were three new issues of Batman in December. Not surprisingly, the two-part “Last Rites” story by Grant Morrison, a Final Crisis tie-in doubling as an epilogue to “Batman R.I.P.,” took a significant step down the charts, and the same goes for issue #684, a fill-in story. The book is still selling about 10,000 units more than it did before “Batman R.I.P.,” though.

Issues #682 and #683 were promoted through 1-for-25 variant-cover editions, issue #684 through the usual 1-for-10 one. If you’re late to the party, what this means is that retailers had to order 25 (or 10) copies of the regular edition for each variant-cover edition.

—–

14 - JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA

12/2001: JLA #61            --  67,491*

12/2002: JLA #76            --  61,557* 

12/2003: JLA #91            --  58,981

12/2004: JLA #109           --  63,791 [ 64,747]

12/2005: JLA #123           --  76,899

12/2006: Justice League #4  -- 136,709 [139,123]

12/2006: Justice League #5  -- 132,460 [133,924]

--------------------------------------

12/2007: Justice League #15 -- 100,234 (- 1.5%)

12/2007: Justice League #16 --  95,557 (- 4.7%)

01/2008: Justice League #17 --  94,712 (- 0.9%)

02/2008: Justice League #18 --  89,803 (- 5.2%)

03/2008: Justice League #19 --  87,482 (- 2.6%)

04/2008: Justice League #20 --  85,807 (- 1.9%)

05/2008: Justice League #21 --  90,035 (+ 4.9%)

06/2008: Justice League #22 --  85,013 (- 5.6%)

07/2008: Justice League #23 --  82,953 (- 2.4%)

08/2008: Justice League #24 --  81,451 (- 1.8%)

09/2008: --

10/2008: Justice League #25 --  80,731 (- 0.9%)

10/2008: Justice League #26 --  77,353 (- 4.2%)

11/2008: --

12/2008: Justice League #27 --  75,803 (- 2.0%)

12/2008: Justice League #28 --  72,728 (- 4.1%)

----------------

6 months: -12.6%

1 year  : -24.1%

2 years : -44.8%

5 years : +25.9%

The two December issues launched a storyline which dusts off characters created for the old Milestone Comics line published by DC in the early 1990s, with no effect whatsoever on the numbers.

—–

20/23 - JUSTICE SOCIETY OF AMERICA

12/2001: JSA #31             --  40,334*

12/2002: JSA #43             --  41,249*

12/2003: JSA #55             --  43,009

12/2004: JSA #68             --  45,198

12/2005: JSA #80             --  50,862

12/2006: Justice Society #1  -- 102,990 [108,140]

---------------------------------------

12/2007: Justice Society #11 --  89,613 (-  9.9%)

01/2008: --

02/2008: Justice Society #12 --  84,162 (-  6.1%)

02/2008: Justice Society #13 --  82,702 (-  1.7%)

03/2008: --

04/2008: Justice Society #14 --  80,507 (-  2.7%)

05/2008: Justice Society #15 --  78,311 (-  2.7%)

06/2008: Justice Society #16 --  77,328 (-  1.3%)

07/2008: Justice Society #17 --  75,532 (-  2.3%)

08/2008: Justice Society #18 --  73,485 (-  2.7%)

09/2008: --

10/2008: Justice Society #19 --  72,073 (-  1.9%)

11/2008: Justice Society #20 --  71,355 (-  1.0%)

12/2008: Justice Society #21 --  69,662 (-  2.4%)

12/2008: Justice Society #22 --  67,615 (-  2.9%)

----------------

6 months: -11.2%

1 year  : -23.4%

2 years : -33.4%

5 years : +59.6%

Thus ends the book’s long-running sequel to Kingdom Come. The advertising copy for issue #22 promised interior pages by co-writer and superstar artist Alex Ross, but once again, retailers seem singularly unimpressed by any of this; sales just continue their usual, steady decline.

As usual for Justice Society of America, there were 1-for-10 variant-cover editions for both issues.

—–

24 - DETECTIVE COMICS

12/2001: Detective Comics #765 -- 37,929*

12/2002: Detective Comics #777 -- 40,867*

12/2003: Detective Comics #789 -- 36,456

12/2004: Detective Comics #801 -- 42,775

12/2005: Detective Comics #814 -- 37,145

12/2006: Detective Comics #826 -- 59,657

12/2006: Detective Comics #827 -- 55,031

----------------------------------------

12/2007: Detective Comics #839 -- 62,297 (+ 3.4%) [65,773]

01/2008: Detective Comics #840 -- 51,579 (-17.2%)

02/2008: Detective Comics #841 -- 50,535 (- 2.0%)

03/2008: Detective Comics #842 -- 49,425 (- 2.2%)

04/2008: Detective Comics #843 -- 48,431 (- 2.0%)

05/2008: Detective Comics #844 -- 48,394 (- 0.1%)

06/2008: Detective Comics #845 -- 48,920 (+ 1.2%)

07/2008: Detective Comics #846 -- 72,417 (+48.0%)

08/2008: Detective Comics #847 -- 71,134 (- 1.8%)

09/2008: Detective Comics #848 -- 68,306 (- 4.0%)

10/2008: Detective Comics #849 -- 65,878 (- 3.6%)

11/2008: Detective Comics #850 -- 64,196 (- 2.6%)

12/2008: Detective Comics #851 -- 64,961 (+ 1.2%)

----------------

6 months: +32.8%

1 year  : + 4.3%

2 years : +13.3%

5 years : +78.2%

Curiously, the December issue sees a slight increase of November’s “anniversary” number. It’s a crossover with Batman #684, granted, but it’s also a fill-in story.

Ah, hold on: Unlike previous issues of the title, Detective Comics #851 came with a 1-for-10 variant-cover edition. Mystery solved.

—–

25 - GREEN LANTERN

12/2001: Green Lantern #145 --  33,397*

12/2002: Green Lantern #157 --  37,869*

12/2003: Green Lantern #172 --  31,080

12/2004: Rebirth #3 of 6    -- 106,523 [126,654]

12/2005: Green Lantern #6   --  88,437

12/2006: --

--------------------------------------

12/2007: Green Lantern #25  --  90,545 (+15.1%)

12/2007: Green Lantern #26  --  69,986 (-22.7%)

01/2008: Green Lantern #27  --  67,600 (- 3.4%)

02/2008: --

03/2008: Green Lantern #28  --  68,073 (+ 0.7%)

03/2008: Green Lantern #29  --  66,536 (- 2.3%)

04/2008: Green Lantern #30  --  65,347 (- 1.9%)

05/2008: Green Lantern #31  --  65,874 (+ 0.8%)

06/2008: Green Lantern #32  --  64,839 (- 1.6%)

07/2008: Green Lantern #33  --  63,814 (- 1.6%)

08/2008: --

09/2008: Green Lantern #34  --  63,825 (+ 0.0%)

10/2008: Green Lantern #35  --  63,383 (- 0.7%)

11/2008: --

12/2008: Green Lantern #36  --  64,755 (+ 2.2%)

-----------------

6 months: -  0.1%

1 year  : - 19.3%

2 years :   n.a.

5 years : +108.4%

The drum roll for the looming “Blackest Night” crossover builds up interest, evidently.

Looking at the cover, the high concept seems to be Green Lantern vs. Predator. I can see how that would be exciting.

—-

31 - ACTION COMICS

12/2001: Action Comics #786 -- 37,592* 

12/2002: Action Comics #798 -- 32,617*

12/2003: Action Comics #810 -- 29,509

12/2004: Action Comics #822 -- 38,110

12/2005: Action Comics #834 -- 42,425

12/2006: --

-------------------------------------

12/2007: Action Comics #860 -- 56,254 (+ 3.1%)

01/2008: Action Comics #861 -- 56,093 (- 0.3%)

02/2008: Action Comics #862 -- 55,658 (- 0.8%)

03/2008: --

04/2008: Action Comics #863 -- 56,882 (+ 2.2%)

04/2008: Action Comics #864 -- 48,438 (-14.9%)

05/2008: Action Comics #865 -- 46,764 (- 3.5%)

06/2008: Action Comics #866 -- 50,158 (+ 7.3%) [53,198]

07/2008: Action Comics #867 -- 49,363 (- 1.6%)

08/2008: Action Comics #868 -- 49,556 (+ 0.4%)

09/2008: Action Comics #869 -- 49,597 (+ 0.1%)

10/2008: Action Comics #870 -- 57,407 (+15.8%)

11/2008: Action Comics #871 -- 58,547 (+ 2.0%)

12/2008: Action Comics #872 -- 57,175 (- 2.3%)

----------------

6 months: +14.0%

1 year  : + 1.6%

2 years :  n.a.

5 years : +93.8%

The “New Krypton” crossover continues. It’s not the kind of hit “The Sinestro Corps War” was, but it does keep sales at a consistently increased level.

As usual, there was a 1-for-10 variant-cover edition.

—–

33 - BATMAN: CACOPHONY

11/2008: Cacophony #1 of 3 -- 69,522

12/2008: Cacophony #2 of 3 -- 55,698 (-19.9%)

That’s a stiff drop-off. Like the previous issue, the book was promoted through both 1-for-25 and 1-for-50 variant-cover editions.

—–

34 - SUPERMAN

12/2001: Superman #177 --  41,241*

12/2002: Superman #189 --  34,488*

12/2003: Superman #200 --  47,346 [ 51,745]

12/2004: Superman #212 -- 100,244 [103,545]

12/2005: Superman #224 --  63,719 [ 65,300]

12/2006: --

---------------------------------

12/2007: Superman #671 --  45,290 (- 6.4%)

01/2008: Superman #672 --  44,656 (- 1.4%)

02/2008: Superman #673 --  41,580 (- 6.9%)

03/2008: Superman #674 --  41,715 (+ 0.3%)

04/2008: Superman #675 --  54,855 (+31.5%)

05/2008: Superman #676 --  45,644 (-16.8%)

06/2008: Superman #677 --  54,634 (+19.7%)

07/2008: Superman #678 --  47,670 (-12.8%)

08/2008: Superman #679 --  46,615 (- 2.2%)

09/2008: Superman #680 --  46,585 (- 0.1%)

10/2008: Superman #681 --  54,611 (+17.2%) [57,212]

11/2008: Superman #682 --  55,435 (+ 1.5%)

12/2008: Superman #683 --  55,287 (- 0.3%)

----------------

6 months: + 1.2%

1 year  : +22.1%

2 years :  n.a.

5 years : +16.8%

A “New Krypton” crossover – see comments on Action Comics.

There was a 1-for-10 variant-cover edition, as usual.

—–

42 - FINAL CRISIS: REVELATIONS

08/2008: Revelations #1 of 5 -- 58,434

09/2008: Revelations #2 of 5 -- 54,706 (-6.4%)

10/2008: Revelations #3 of 5 -- 52,864 (-3.4%)

11/2008: --

12/2008: Revelations #4 of 5 -- 49,987 (-5.4%)
44 - FINAL CRISIS ONE-SHOTS

07/2008: Requiem #1      -- 74,310 [80,069]

08/2008: DCU: LWaT #1    -- 67,063

10/2008: Submit #1       -- 57,490

10/2008: RotRL #1        -- 76,407 [80,218]

11/2008: Resist #1       -- 56,931

12/2008: Secret Files #1 -- 49,277

Two Final Crisis spin-off books with decent but unspectacular numbers. Both were supported through 50/50 variant-cover editions.

—–

48 - SUPERMAN/BATMAN

12/2003: Superman/Batman #4  -- 102,725 [116,361]

12/2003: Superman/Batman #5  --  96,420 [115,082]

12/2004: Superman/Batman #15 -- 119,926 [123,273]

12/2004: Superman/Batman #16 -- 115,657 [120,927]

12/2005: Superman/Batman #23 -- 102,248 [103,726]

12/2006: Superman/Batman #31 --  81,716

---------------------------------------

12/2007: Superman/Batman #44 --  53,057 (- 0.8%)

01/2008: Superman/Batman #45 --  52,119 (- 1.8%)

02/2008: Superman/Batman #46 --  52,009 (- 0.2%)

03/2008: --

04/2008: Superman/Batman #47 --  52,557 (+ 1.1%)

05/2008: Superman/Batman #48 --  52,845 (+ 0.6%)

06/2008: Superman/Batman #49 --  52,579 (- 0.5%)

07/2008: Superman/Batman #50 --  61,321 (+16.6%)

08/2008: Superman/Batman #51 --  51,701 (-15.7%)

09/2008: Superman/Batman #52 --  50,000 (- 3.3%)

10/2008: Superman/Batman #53 --  48,187 (- 3.6%)

11/2008: --

12/2008: Superman/Batman #54 --  45,968 (- 4.6%)

----------------

6 months: -12.6%

1 year  : -13.4%

2 years : -43.8%

5 years : -52.3%

Whatever Superman/Batman did right in the first half of 2008, it’s gone.

—–

49 - SUPERGIRL

12/2001: Supergirl #65 --  21,054*

12/2002: Supergirl #77 --  20,307*

12/2005: --

12/2006: Supergirl #12 --  59,819 (- 4.4%)

12/2006: Supergirl #13 --  56,648 (- 5.3%)

---------------------------------

12/2007: Supergirl #24 --  37,922 (-16.6%)

01/2008: Supergirl #25 --  36,459 (- 3.9%)

02/2008: Supergirl #26 --  34,186 (- 6.2%)

03/2008: Supergirl #27 --  32,596 (- 4.7%)

04/2008: Supergirl #28 --  31,379 (- 3.7%)

05/2008: Supergirl #29 --  30,192 (- 3.8%)

06/2008: Supergirl #30 --  29,553 (- 2.1%)

07/2008: Supergirl #31 --  28,813 (- 2.5%)

08/2008: Supergirl #32 --  28,114 (- 2.4%)

09/2008: Supergirl #33 --  27,609 (- 1.8%)

10/2008: Supergirl #34 --  33,958 (+23.0%)

11/2008: Supergirl #35 --  45,518 (+34.0%)

12/2008: Supergirl #36 --  45,491 (- 0.1%)

----------------

6 months: +53.9%

1 year  : +20.0%

2 years : -21.9%

The “New Krypton” crossover keeps Supergirl sales at a significantly increased level. As usual, there was a 1-for-10 variant-cover edition.

—–

53 - GREEN LANTERN CORPS

12/2005: GLC: Recharge #3 of 5   -- 64,490 [65,669]

12/2006: Green Lantern Corps #7  -- 38,737

------------------------------------------

12/2007: Green Lantern Corps #19 -- 50,516 (- 9.5%)

01/2008: Green Lantern Corps #20 -- 44,607 (-11.7%) [48,577]

02/2008: Green Lantern Corps #21 -- 47,582 (+ 6.7%)

03/2008: Green Lantern Corps #22 -- 46,736 (- 1.8%)

04/2008: Green Lantern Corps #23 -- 46,780 (+ 0.1%)

05/2008: Green Lantern Corps #24 -- 46,948 (+ 0.4%)

06/2008: Green Lantern Corps #25 -- 47,399 (+ 1.0%)

07/2008: Green Lantern Corps #26 -- 46,098 (- 2.8%)

08/2008: Green Lantern Corps #27 -- 46,045 (- 0.1%)

09/2008: Green Lantern Corps #28 -- 44,939 (- 2.4%)

10/2008: Green Lantern Corps #29 -- 46,316 (+ 3.1%)

11/2008: Green Lantern Corps #30 -- 43,600 (- 5.9%)

12/2008: Green Lantern Corps #31 -- 44,033 (+ 0.9%)

----------------

6 months: - 7.1%

1 year  : -12.8%

2 years : +13.7%

Another book labeled as a “Blackest Night” prelude in the advertising copy. It works.

—–

56/57/58/59/60 - TRINITY

06/2008: Trinity #1  -- 88,044 

06/2008: Trinity #2  -- 79,495 (- 9.7%)

06/2008: Trinity #3  -- 76,224 (- 4.1%)

06/2008: Trinity #4  -- 73,448 (- 3.6%)

07/2008: Trinity #5  -- 68,351 (- 6.9%)

07/2008: Trinity #6  -- 66,624 (- 2.5%)

07/2008: Trinity #7  -- 65,509 (- 1.7%)

07/2008: Trinity #8  -- 64,220 (- 2.0%)

07/2008: Trinity #9  -- 62,252 (- 3.1%)

08/2008: Trinity #10 -- 60,249 (- 3.2%)

08/2008: Trinity #11 -- 59,356 (- 1.5%)

08/2008: Trinity #12 -- 58,151 (- 2.0%)

08/2008: Trinity #13 -- 57,284 (- 1.5%)

09/2008: Trinity #14 -- 53,736 (- 6.2%)

09/2008: Trinity #15 -- 53,101 (- 1.2%)

09/2008: Trinity #16 -- 52,316 (- 1.5%)

09/2008: Trinity #17 -- 51,318 (- 1.9%)

10/2008: Trinity #18 -- 49,174 (- 4.2%)

10/2008: Trinity #19 -- 48,551 (- 1.3%)

10/2008: Trinity #20 -- 47,927 (- 1.3%)

10/2008: Trinity #21 -- 47,252 (- 1.4%)

10/2008: Trinity #22 -- 46,638 (- 1.3%)

11/2008: Trinity #23 -- 44,971 (- 3.6%)

11/2008: Trinity #24 -- 44,498 (- 1.1%)

11/2008: Trinity #25 -- 43,804 (- 1.6%)

11/2008: Trinity #26 -- 43,210 (- 1.4%)

12/2008: Trinity #27 -- 41,725 (- 3.4%)

12/2008: Trinity #28 -- 41,510 (- 0.5%)

12/2008: Trinity #29 -- 40,883 (- 1.5%)

12/2008: Trinity #30 -- 40,771 (- 0.3%)

12/2008: Trinity #31 -- 40,575 (- 0.5%)

----------------

6 months: -48.2%

From week to week, the drops were finally decreasing in December, but at the beginning of the month, the book again lost more sales than it should have, at this stage.

Be that as it may, the six-month decline looks alarming. DC’s previous weekly serial, Countdown, lost 29.9 percent over the same period, while Countdown‘s predecessor 52 lost 35.6 percent over its first six months. And those series sold at a much higher level to begin with.

Now, the critical response to the series has been mixed, but given that Countdown fared much worse in that regard, that’s probably not the decisive factor. Rather, I suspect that the target audience simply doesn’t think Trinity “matters,” in the grander scheme of the DC Universe. Which, of course, makes it disposable in the environment both DC and Marvel have been creating over the past few years.

—–

61 - TITANS

12/2001: Titans #35     -- 25,630*

12/2002: Titans #48     -- 21,336*

---------------------------------

04/2008: Titans #1      -- 75,584 (+52.0%)

05/2008: Titans #2      -- 57,358 (-24.1%)

06/2008: Titans #3      -- 54,512 (- 5.0%)

07/2008: --

08/2008: --

09/2008: Titans #4      -- 51,755 (- 5.1%)

09/2008: Titans #5      -- 49,959 (- 3.5%)

10/2008: Titans #6      -- 45,453 (- 9.0%)

11/2008: Titans #7      -- 41,507 (- 8.7%)

12/2008: Titans #8      -- 39,154 (- 5.7%)

----------------

6 months: -28.2%
66 - TEEN TITANS

12/2003: Teen Titans #6  -- 69,255 [73,096]

12/2004: Teen Titans #19 -- 62,585 [66,290]

12/2005: Teen Titans #30 -- 67,155

12/2006: Teen Titans #42 -- 60,165

----------------------------------

12/2007: Teen Titans #54 -- 53,790 (- 1.1%)

01/2008: Teen Titans #55 -- 52,376 (- 2.6%)

02/2008: Teen Titans #56 -- 50,283 (- 4.0%)

03/2008: Teen Titans #57 -- 49,109 (- 2.3%)

04/2008: Teen Titans #58 -- 47,357 (- 3.6%)

05/2008: Teen Titans #59 -- 46,306 (- 2.2%)

06/2008: Teen Titans #60 -- 45,036 (- 2.7%)

07/2008: Teen Titans #61 -- 44,666 (- 0.8%)

08/2008: Teen Titans #62 -- 43,258 (- 3.2%)

09/2008: Teen Titans #63 -- 41,790 (- 3.4%)

10/2008: Teen Titans #64 -- 39,695 (- 5.0%)

11/2008: Teen Titans #65 -- 37,880 (- 4.6%)

12/2008: Teen Titans #66 -- 36,808 (- 2.8%)

----------------

6 months: -18.3%

1 year  : -31.6%

2 years : -38.8%

5 years : -46.9%

The Titans franchise keeps shedding readers.

—–

70 - NIGHTWING

12/2001: Nightwing #64  -- 34,130*

12/2002: Nightwing #76  -- 30,100*

12/2003: Nightwing #88  -- 28,976

12/2004: Nightwing #100 -- 40,022

12/2005: Nightwing #115 -- 35,674

12/2006: Nightwing #127 -- 34,889

---------------------------------

12/2007: Nightwing #139 -- 49,291 (+ 5.4%) [52,607]

01/2008: Nightwing #140 -- 32,305 (-34.5%)

02/2008: Nightwing #141 -- 30,980 (- 4.1%)

03/2008: Nightwing #142 -- 30,253 (- 2.4%)

04/2008: Nightwing #143 -- 29,914 (- 1.1%)

05/2008: Nightwing #144 -- 29,367 (- 1.8%)

06/2008: Nightwing #145 -- 29,435 (+ 0.2%)

07/2008: Nightwing #146 -- 29,494 (+ 0.2%)

08/2008: Nightwing #147 -- 56,300 (+90.9%)

09/2008: Nightwing #148 -- 53,210 (- 5.5%)

10/2008: Nightwing #149 -- 50,588 (- 4.9%)

11/2008: Nightwing #150 -- 50,993 (+ 0.8%)

12/2008: Nightwing #151 -- 35,210 (-31.0%)

----------------

6 months: +19.6%

1 year  : -28.6%

2 years : + 0.9%

5 years : +21.5%

Coming out of “Batman R.I.P.,” Nightwing numbers drop back towards their usual level.

—–

79 - WONDER WOMAN

12/2001: Wonder Woman #177 --  29,813*

12/2002: --

12/2003: Wonder Woman #199 --  29,224

12/2004: Wonder Woman #211 --  24,828

12/2005: Wonder Woman #224 --  47,224

12/2006: --

-------------------------------------

12/2007: Wonder Woman #15  --  44,628 (-15.9%)

01/2008: Wonder Woman #16  --  42,897 (- 3.9%)

02/2008: Wonder Woman #17  --  41,948 (- 2.2%)

03/2008: Wonder Woman #18  --  40,771 (- 2.8%)

04/2008: Wonder Woman #19  --  39,489 (- 3.1%)

05/2008: Wonder Woman #20  --  38,116 (- 3.5%)

06/2008: Wonder Woman #21  --  37,086 (- 2.7%)

07/2008: Wonder Woman #22  --  36,514 (- 1.5%)

08/2008: Wonder Woman #23  --  35,562 (- 2.6%)

09/2008: Wonder Woman #24  --  34,583 (- 2.8%)

10/2008: Wonder Woman #25  --  33,583 (- 2.9%)

11/2008: Wonder Woman #26  --  33,277 (- 0.9%)

12/2008: Wonder Woman #27  --  32,322 (- 2.9%)

----------------

6 months: -12.9%

1 year  : -27.6%

2 years :  n.a.

5 years : +10.6%

Wonder Woman sales continue a slow downslide, blissfully ignorant of the notion that the current arc was meant to re-ignite interest in the series.

Which is utterly dispiriting, surely; if a villain with green spikes for eyes can’t convince people that Wonder Woman is relevant and important, nothing can.

—–

80 - BATMAN AND THE OUTSIDERS

12/2003: Outsiders #7  -- 47,052

12/2004: Outsiders #18 -- 40,601

12/2005: Outsiders #31 -- 46,555

12/2006: Outsiders #43 -- 34,243

--------------------------------

12/2007: Batsiders #3  -- 40,371 (- 5.7%)

01/2008: --

02/2008: Batsiders #4  -- 37,903 (- 6.1%)

03/2008: Batsiders #5  -- 36,797 (- 2.9%)

04/2008: Batsiders #6  -- 36,551 (- 0.7%)

05/2008: Batsiders #7  -- 35,071 (- 4.1%)

06/2008: Batsiders #8  -- 34,640 (- 1.2%)

07/2008: Batsiders #9  -- 34,401 (- 0.7%)

08/2008: Batsiders #10 -- 33,645 (- 2.2%)

09/2008: Batsiders #11 -- 49,945 (+48.5%)

10/2008: Batsiders #12 -- 46,649 (- 6.6%)

11/2008: Batsiders #13 -- 42,939 (- 8.0%)

12/2008: Batsiders #14 -- 32,163 (-25.1%)

----------------

6 months: - 7.2%

1 year  : -20.3%

2 years : - 6.1%

5 years : -31.6%

It’s perhaps worth noting that — in contrast to the other titles involved in the crossover — Batman and the Outsiders doesn’t retain any of the additional sales gained from “Batman R.I.P.”

Anyway: The book was on hiatus for a month, and is set to return in February with a special, and no Batman.

——

90 - ROBIN

12/2001: Robin #97  -- 26,250*

12/2002: Robin #109 -- 24,170*

12/2003: Robin #121 -- 30,683 [31,458]

12/2004: Robin #133 -- 35,406

12/2005: Robin #145 -- 28,532

12/2006: Robin #157 -- 30,556

-----------------------------

12/2007: Robin #169 -- 48,665 (-  4.0%) [51,441]

01/2008: Robin #170 -- 30,048 (- 38.3%)

02/2008: Robin #171 -- 27,781 (-  7.6%)

03/2008: Robin #172 -- 26,912 (-  3.1%)

04/2008: Robin #173 -- 26,357 (-  2.1%)

05/2008: Robin #174 -- 26,209 (-  0.6%)

06/2008: --

07/2008: Robin #175 -- 53,880 (+105.6%)

08/2008: Robin #176 -- 54,912 (+  1.9%)

08/2008: Robin #177 -- 31,346 (- 42.9%)

09/2008: Robin #178 -- 32,234 (+  2.8%)

10/2008: Robin #179 -- 30,081 (-  6.7%)

11/2008: Robin #180 -- 28,399 (-  5.6%)

12/2008: Robin #181 -- 27,891 (-  1.8%)

-----------------

6 months:   n.a.

1 year  : - 42.7%

2 years : -  8.7%

5 years : -  9.1%

Cancelled with issue #183.

—–

97 - BOOSTER GOLD

12/2007: Booster Gold #5  -- 38,228 (+ 1.5%)

01/2008: Booster Gold #6  -- 36,292 (- 5.1%)

02/2008: Booster Gold #0  -- 37,808 (+ 4.2%)

03/2008: Booster Gold #7  -- 36,140 (- 4.4%)

04/2008: Booster Gold #8  -- 35,982 (- 0.4%)

05/2008: Booster Gold #9  -- 35,030 (- 2.7%)

06/2008: Booster Gold #10 -- 34,435 (- 1.7%)

07/2008: BGold #1,000,000 -- 34,431 (- 0.0%)

08/2008: Booster Gold #11 -- 32,900 (- 4.5%)

09/2008: Booster Gold #12 -- 32,049 (- 2.6%)

10/2008: Booster Gold #13 -- 29,914 (- 6.7%)

11/2008: Booster Gold #14 -- 28,260 (- 5.5%)

12/2008: Booster Gold #15 -- 26,835 (- 5.0%)

----------------

6 months: -22.1%

1 year  : -29.8%

Dan Jurgens took over as the new writer in December, with no noticeable effect on sales. Obviously, the departure of the original writers has quite hurt the book’s numbers.

—–

99 - THE FLASH

12/2001: Flash #181     --  26,922*

12/2002: Flash #193     --  28,185*

12/2003: Flash #205     --  34,931 [35,626]

12/2004: --

12/2005: Flash #229     --  41,459

12/2006: Flash: FMA #7  --  53,600

----------------------------------

12/2007: Flash #235     --  43,788 (-  5.7%)

01/2008: Flash #236     --  41,464 (-  5.3%)

02/2008: Flash #237     --  37,719 (-  9.0%)

03/2008: Flash #238     --  35,606 (-  5.6%)

04/2008: Flash #239     --  33,741 (-  5.2%)

05/2008: Flash #240     --  31,944 (-  5.3%)

06/2008: Flash #241     --  30,810 (-  3.6%)

07/2008: Flash #242     --  30,325 (-  1.6%)

08/2008: Flash #243     --  29,647 (-  2.2%)

09/2008: Flash #244     --  29,180 (-  1.6%)

10/2008: Flash #245     --  28,085 (-  3.8%)

11/2008: Flash #246     --  27,746 (-  1.2%)

12/2008: Flash #247     --  26,498 (-  4.5%)

----------------

6 months: -14.0%

1 year  : -39.5%

2 years : -50.6%

5 years : -24.1%

And with that, the book is cancelled, to let the property rest until the next revamp comes around in April.

—–

103 - THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD

12/2007: The Brave and the Bold #9  -- 43,475 (- 4.7%)

01/2008: --

02/2008: The Brave and the Bold #10 -- 39,124 (-10.0%)

03/2008: The Brave and the Bold #11 -- 37,751 (- 3.5%)

04/2008: The Brave and the Bold #12 -- 37,739 (- 0.0%)

05/2008: The Brave and the Bold #13 -- 35,814 (- 5.1%)

06/2008: The Brave and the Bold #14 -- 34,361 (- 4.1%)

07/2008: The Brave and the Bold #15 -- 32,688 (- 4.9%)

08/2008: The Brave and the Bold #16 -- 31,522 (- 3.6%)

09/2008: The Brave and the Bold #17 -- 29,857 (- 5.3%)

10/2008: The Brave and the Bold #18 -- 28,199 (- 5.5%)

11/2008: The Brave and the Bold #19 -- 26,407 (- 6.4%)

12/2008: The Brave and the Bold #20 -- 25,050 (- 5.1%)

----------------

6 months: -27.1%

1 year  : -42.4%

There’s still no sign of issue #23 in the publisher’s April previews. That was meant to be superstar writer J. Michael Straczynski’s first issue. May I humbly suggest a relaunch?

—–

106 - SECRET SIX

05/2006: Secret Six #1 of 6 -- 54,961 [57,425]

07/2006: Secret Six #2 of 6 -- 47,346

08/2006: Secret Six #3 of 6 -- 44,507

09/2006: Secret Six #4 of 6 -- 40,782

10/2006: Secret Six #5 of 6 -- 36,628

12/2006: Secret Six #6 of 6 -- 35,513

-------------------------------------

09/2008: Secret Six #1      -- 31,673 (-10.8%)

10/2008: Secret Six #2      -- 27,846 (-12.1%)

11/2008: Secret Six #3      -- 26,053 (- 6.4%)

12/2008: Secret Six #4      -- 24,657 (- 5.4%)

----------------

2 years :  n.a.

Sales are bottoming out.

—–

107 - GREEN ARROW/BLACK CANARY

12/2001: Green Arrow #11  -- 78,789*

12/2002: Green Arrow #20  -- 53,745*

12/2003: Green Arrow #33  -- 36,934

12/2004: Green Arrow #45  -- 30,997 [32,082]

12/2005: Green Arrow #57  -- 31,778

12/2006: Green Arrow #69  -- 32,234

-----------------------------------

12/2007: Arrow/Canary #3  -- 40,321 (- 5.9%)

01/2008: Arrow/Canary #4  -- 35,039 (-13.1%)

02/2008: Arrow/Canary #5  -- 36,662 (+ 4.6%)

03/2008: Arrow/Canary #6  -- 32,621 (-11.0%)

04/2008: Arrow/Canary #7  -- 32,033 (- 1.8%) 

05/2008: Arrow/Canary #8  -- 30,864 (- 3.7%)

06/2008: Arrow/Canary #9  -- 30,330 (- 1.7%)

07/2008: Arrow/Canary #10 -- 29,604 (- 2.4%)

08/2008: Arrow/Canary #11 -- 28,694 (- 3.1%)

09/2008: Arrow/Canary #12 -- 27,896 (- 2.8%)

10/2008: Arrow/Canary #13 -- 26,890 (- 3.6%)

11/2008: Arrow/Canary #14 -- 25,599 (- 4.8%)

12/2008: Arrow/Canary #15 -- 24,526 (- 4.2%)

----------------

6 months: -19.1%

1 year  : -39.2%

2 years : -23.9%

5 years : -33.6%

A new writer took over in December; not that you’d know it from the numbers.

—–

110 - TERROR TITANS

10/2008: Terror Titans #1 of 6 -- 33,001

11/2008: Terror Titans #2 of 6 -- 27,023 (-18.1%)

12/2008: Terror Titans #3 of 6 -- 24,059 (-11.0%)

Terrible numbers for a miniseries.

I’m not sure they could reasonably have expected anything better, considering how the parent title is faring.

—–

111 - SANDMAN: DREAM HUNTERS (Vertigo)

11/2008: Dream Hunters #1 of 4 -- 32,638

12/2008: Dream Hunters #2 of 4 -- 24,031 (-26.4%)

This doesn’t look great, either, but of course, a Sandman book with Neil Gaiman’s name on it will probably sell decently enough once it’s been collected.

As usual, there was a 1-in-25 variant-cover edition.

—–

117 - FABLES (Vertigo)

12/2002: Fables #8  -- 22,222*

12/2003: Fables #20 -- 25,640

12/2004: Fables #32 -- 24,889

12/2005: Fables #44 -- 24,515

12/2006: Fables #56 -- 25,892

-----------------------------

12/2007: Fables #68 -- 24,574 (-1.1%)

01/2008: --

02/2008: Fables #69 -- 24,337 (-1.0%)

02/2008: Fables #70 -- 23,975 (-1.5%)

03/2008: Fables #71 -- 24,006 (+0.1%)

04/2008: Fables #72 -- 23,853 (-0.6%)

05/2008: Fables #73 -- 23,785 (-0.3%)

06/2008: --

07/2008: Fables #74 -- 24,166 (+1.6%)

06/2008: --

09/2008: Fables #75 -- 25,266 (+4.6%)

09/2008: Fables #76 -- 23,914 (-5.4%)

10/2008: Fables #77 -- 23,761 (-0.6%)

11/2008: Fables #78 -- 23,345 (-1.8%)

12/2008: Fables #79 -- 22,769 (-2.5%)

----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  : - 7.4%

2 years : -12.1%

5 years : -11.2%

Continuing a slow decline.

—–

122 - THE LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES

12/2001: Legion #3  -- 23,338*

12/2002: Legion #15 -- 23,962*

12/2003: Legion #28 -- 25,042

12/2004: LoSH #1    -- 50,691 [59,944]

12/2005: --

12/2006: SLoSH #25  -- 33,288

-----------------------------

12/2007: LoSH #37   -- 45,803 (+70.8%)

01/2008: LoSH #38   -- 33,045 (-27.9%)

02/2008: LoSH #39   -- 31,123 (- 5.8%)

03/2008: LoSH #40   -- 30,377 (- 2.4%)

04/2008: LoSH #41   -- 28,939 (- 4.7%)

05/2008: LoSH #42   -- 27,940 (- 3.5%)

06/2008: --

07/2008: LoSH #43   -- 27,531 (- 1.5%)

07/2008: LoSH #44   -- 29,954 (+ 8.8%)

08/2008: LoSH #45   -- 25,783 (-13.9%)

09/2008: LoSH #46   -- 24,959 (- 3.2%)

10/2008: LoSH #47   -- 23,751 (- 4.8%)

11/2008: LoSH #48   -- 22,917 (- 3.5%)

12/2008: LoSH #49   -- 22,180 (- 3.2%)

----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  : -51.6%

2 years : -33.4%

5 years : -11.4%

Cancelled with issue #50 to make room for a relaunch.

—–

128 - BATMAN CONFIDENTIAL

12/2006: Batman Confidential #1  -- 61,119

------------------------------------------

12/2007: --

01/2008: --

02/2008: Batman Confidential #12 -- 27,208 (- 0.7%)

02/2008: Batman Confidential #13 -- 25,735 (- 5.4%)

03/2008: Batman Confidential #14 -- 25,330 (- 1.6%)

03/2008: Batman Confidential #15 -- 24,283 (- 4.1%)

04/2008: Batman Confidential #16 -- 24,038 (- 1.0%)

05/2008: Batman Confidential #17 -- 25,017 (+ 4.1%)

06/2008: Batman Confidential #18 -- 24,881 (- 0.5%)

07/2008: Batman Confidential #19 -- 25,037 (+ 0.6%)

08/2008: Batman Confidential #20 -- 24,654 (- 1.5%)

09/2008: Batman Confidential #21 -- 24,515 (- 0.6%)

10/2008: Batman Confidential #22 -- 24,281 (- 1.0%)

11/2008: Batman Confidential #23 -- 22,909 (- 5.7%)

12/2008: Batman Confidential #24 -- 21,470 (- 6.3%)

----------------

6 months: -13.7% 

1 year  :  n.a.

2 years : -64.9%

The bottom is dropping out here, obviously.

—–

132 - BATGIRL

12/2001: Batgirl #23     -- 33,770*

12/2002: Batgirl #35     -- 31,588*

12/2003: Batgirl #47     -- 26,485

12/2004: Batgirl #59     -- 31,028 [32,423]

12/2005: Batgirl #71     -- 26,378

----------------------------------

07/2008: Batgirl #1 of 6 -- 34,411

08/2008: Batgirl #2 of 6 -- 27,710 (-19.5%)

09/2008: Batgirl #3 of 6 -- 24,932 (-10.0%)

10/2008: Batgirl #4 of 6 -- 23,501 (- 5.7%)

11/2008: Batgirl #5 of 6 -- 21,595 (- 8.1%)

12/2008: Batgirl #6 of 6 -- 20,750 (- 3.9%)

----------------

5 years : -21.7%

I guess this is it for Batgirl, for the next few years, as far as solo titles are concerned.

—–

135 - BIRDS OF PREY

12/2001: Birds of Prey #38  -- 23,168*

12/2002: Birds of Prey #50  -- 27,879*

12/2003: Birds of Prey #62  -- 30,529

12/2004: Birds of Prey #77  -- 30,303

12/2005: Birds of Prey #89  -- 30,653

12/2006: Birds of Prey #101 -- 29,825

-------------------------------------

12/2007: Birds of Prey #113 -- 24,717 (- 1.6%)

01/2008: Birds of Prey #114 -- 24,211 (- 2.1%)

02/2008: Birds of Prey #115 -- 23,157 (- 4.4%)

03/2008: Birds of Prey #116 -- 22,627 (- 2.3%)

04/2008: Birds of Prey #117 -- 22,181 (- 2.0%)

05/2008: Birds of Prey #118 -- 21,941 (- 1.1%)

06/2008: Birds of Prey #119 -- 21,593 (- 1.6%)

07/2008: Birds of Prey #120 -- 21,572 (- 0.1%)

08/2008: Birds of Prey #121 -- 22,406 (+ 3.9%)

09/2008: Birds of Prey #122 -- 21,318 (- 4.9%)

10/2008: Birds of Prey #123 -- 21,110 (- 1.0%)

11/2008: Birds of Prey #124 -- 20,959 (- 0.7%)

12/2008: Birds of Prey #125 -- 20,161 (- 3.8%)

----------------

6 months: - 6.6%

1 year  : -18.4%

2 years : -32.4%

5 years : -34.0%

Cancelled with issue #127.

—–

145 - VIGILANTE

09/2005: Vigilante #1 of 6 -- 24,533

11/2005: Vigilante #2 of 6 -- 18,712

11/2005: Vigilante #3 of 6 -- 16,412

12/2005: Vigilante #4 of 6 -- 13,344

01/2006: Vigilante #5 of 6 -- 11,939

02/2006: Vigilante #6 of 6 -- 11,382

------------------------------------

12/2008: Vigilante #1      -- 18,236

As an ongoing series, plainly, Vigilante is dead on arrival. There’s a crossover with the Titans books coming up, but given that franchise is struggling as well, I doubt it will make much of a difference.

I’m not sure why anyone thought it was a good idea to throw a new Vigilante title out there to begin with, for that matter, especially in a particularly crowded month and with no discernible promotion. It’s not like sales of the miniseries from three years back suggest that people were screaming for this.

—–

147/153 - SUPERMAN & BATMAN VS. VAMPIRES & WEREWOLVES

10/2008: SM vs. VW #1 of 6 -- 27,825

10/2008: SM vs. VW #2 of 6 -- 24,977 (-10.2%)

11/2008: SM vs. VW #3 of 6 -- 20,835 (-16.6%)

11/2008: SM vs. VW #4 of 6 -- 19,423 (- 6.8%)

12/2008: SM vs. VW #5 of 6 -- 17,965 (- 7.5%)

12/2008: SM vs. VW #6 of 6 -- 17,273 (- 3.9%)
149/158 - SUPERMAN/SUPERGIRL: MAELSTROM

11/2008: Maelstrom #1 of 5 -- 24,041

11/2008: Maelstrom #2 of 5 -- 21,652 (- 9.9%)

12/2008: Maelstrom #3 of 5 -- 17,815 (-17.7%)

12/2008: Maelstrom #4 of 5 -- 16,918 (- 5.0%)
151 - SGT. ROCK: LOST BATTALION

11/2008: Lost Battalion #1 of 6 -- 22,641

12/2008: Lost Battalion #2 of 6 -- 17,525 (-22.6%)
155 - BATMAN: GOTHAM AFTER MIDNIGHT

05/2008: Gotham After Midnight #1  of 12 -- 29,570

06/2008: Gotham After Midnight #2  of 12 -- 24,259 (-18.0%)

07/2008: Gotham After Midnight #3  of 12 -- 22,663 (- 6.6%)

08/2008: Gotham After Midnight #4  of 12 -- 20,863 (- 7.9%)

09/2008: Gotham After Midnight #5  of 12 -- 19,747 (- 5.4%)

10/2008: Gotham After Midnight #6  of 12 -- 18,980 (- 3.9%)

11/2008: Gotham After Midnight #7  of 12 -- 17,802 (- 6.2%)

12/2008: Gotham After Midnight #8  of 12 -- 17,236 (- 3.2%)

----------------

6 months: -29.0%
157 - TANGENT: SUPERMAN'S REIGN

03/2008: Tangent #1  of 12 -- 32,378

04/2008: Tangent #2  of 12 -- 25,652 (-20.8%)

05/2008: Tangent #3  of 12 -- 22,858 (-14.2%)

06/2008: Tangent #4  of 12 -- 21,701 (- 5.1%)

07/2008: Tangent #5  of 12 -- 21,061 (- 3.0%)

08/2008: Tangent #6  of 12 -- 20,314 (- 3.6%)

09/2008: Tangent #7  of 12 -- 19,269 (- 5.1%)

10/2008: Tangent #8  of 12 -- 18,273 (- 5.2%)

11/2008: Tangent #9  of 12 -- 17,523 (- 4.1%)

12/2008: Tangent #10 of 12 -- 17,030 (- 2.8%)

----------------

6 months: -21.5%
160 - RANN/THANAGAR: HOLY WAR

05/2008: Holy War #1 of 8 -- 37,179

06/2008: Holy War #2 of 8 -- 26,446 (-28.9%)

07/2008: Holy War #3 of 8 -- 23,955 (- 9.4%)

08/2008: Holy War #4 of 8 -- 21,836 (- 8.9%)

09/2008: Holy War #5 of 8 -- 20,294 (- 7.1%)

10/2008: Holy War #6 of 8 -- 18,273 (-10.0%)

11/2008: Holy War #7 of 8 -- 17,398 (- 4.8%)

12/2008: Holy War #8 of 8 -- 16,600 (- 4.6%)

----------------

6 months: -37.2%

That’s a whole bunch of books with tangential or no relevance to the status quo of the DC Universe, with predictable results. Given the economic challenges and rising prices for comics in 2009, expect books like these to sell even more abominably, particularly if DC keeps foisting them on the market by the dozen.

Although, let me correct myself: Sgt. Rock is still doing fairly well for what it is, actually, even if the second-issue drop-off is fairly steep.

—–

161 - WORLD OF WARCRAFT (WildStorm)

12/2007: World of WarCraft #2  -- 32,740 (-34.9%) [36,340]

01/2008: World of WarCraft #3  -- 31,183 (- 4.8%)

02/2008: World of WarCraft #4  -- 28,982 (- 7.1%)

03/2008: World of WarCraft #5  -- 27,159 (- 9.4%)

04/2008: World of WarCraft #6  -- 26,271 (- 3.3%)

05/2008: World of WarCraft #7  -- 24,589 (- 6.4%)

06/2008: World of WarCraft #8  -- 23,310 (- 5.2%)

07/2008: World of WarCraft #9  -- 22,203 (- 4.8%)

08/2008: World of WarCraft #10 -- 20,883 (- 6.0%)

09/2008: World of WarCraft #11 -- 19,331 (- 7.4%)

10/2008: World of WarCraft #12 -- 18,200 (- 5.9%)

11/2008: World of WarCraft #13 -- 17,017 (- 6.5%)

12/2008: World of WarCraft #14 -- 16,058 (- 5.6%)

----------------

6 months: -31.1%

1 year  : -51.0%

The series keeps shredding units at a very unhealthy rate. As usual, it was promoted through a 50/50 variant-cover edition.

—–

163 - HAUNTED TANK (Vertigo)

12/2008: Haunted Tank #1 of 5 -- 16,021

This revamp of an old DC property is doing relatively well by recent standards. There was a variant-cover edition which, it seems, could be ordered separately.

—–

165 - DCU HOLIDAY SPECIAL 2008

12/2008: DCU Holiday Special 2008 -- 15,703

For a bunch of throwaway Christmas stories, this seems alright.

—–

167/171 - TERRA

11/2008: Terra #1 of 4 -- 20,950

11/2008: Terra #2 of 4 -- 18,364 (-12.3%)

12/2008: Terra #3 of 4 -- 15,581 (-15.2%)

12/2008: Terra #4 of 4 -- 14,946 (- 4.1%)

—–

175 - WORLD OF WARCRAFT: ASHBRINGER (WildStorm)

09/2008: Ashbringer #1 of 4 -- 21,086

10/2008: Ashbringer #2 of 4 -- 16,579 (-21.4%)

11/2008: --

12/2008: Ashbringer #3 of 4 -- 14,404 (-13.1%)

These are terrible drops. Still, the book remains WildStorm’s second-bestselling title. There was a 1-for-10 variant-cover edition, as usual.

—–

177 - HOUSE OF MYSTERY (Vertigo)

05/2008: House of Mystery #1  -- 27,492

06/2008: House of Mystery #2  -- 19,485 (-29.1%)

07/2008: House of Mystery #3  -- 18,407 (- 5.5%)

08/2008: House of Mystery #4  -- 17,569 (- 4.6%)

09/2008: House of Mystery #5  -- 16,721 (- 4.8%)

10/2008: House of Mystery #6  -- 15,934 (- 4.7%)

11/2008: House of Mystery #7  -- 15,120 (- 5.1%)

12/2008: House of Mystery #8  -- 14,273 (- 5.6%)

----------------

6 months: -26.8%

It doesn’t look like House of Mystery is finding its level. On the other hand, the December issue was the first one that didn’t have Bill Willingham’s name on the cover, so perhaps it’s a good sign that the drop wasn’t larger.

—–

178 - JACK OF FABLES (Vertigo)

12/2006: Jack of Fables #6  -- 20,950

-------------------------------------

12/2007: Jack of Fables #18 -- 17,242 (- 1.2%)

01/2008: Jack of Fables #19 -- 16,886 (- 2.1%)

02/2008: Jack of Fables #20 -- 16,650 (- 1.4%)

03/2008: Jack of Fables #21 -- 16,597 (- 0.3%)

04/2008: Jack of Fables #22 -- 16,305 (- 1.8%)

05/2008: --

06/2008: Jack of Fables #23 -- 16,144 (- 1.0%)

07/2008: --

08/2008: Jack of Fables #24 -- 15,953 (- 1.2%)

08/2008: Jack of Fables #25 -- 15,642 (- 2.0%)

09/2008: Jack of Fables #26 -- 15,471 (- 1.1%)

10/2008: Jack of Fables #27 -- 15,092 (- 2.5%)

11/2008: Jack of Fables #28 -- 14,528 (- 3.7%)

12/2008: Jack of Fables #29 -- 14,151 (- 2.6%)

----------------

6 months: -12.4%

1 year  : -17.9%

2 years : -32.5%

Declining slowly but steadily.

Meanwhile, the latest paperback collection was the third-bestselling book on the Graphic Novel chart in December, with estimated first-month direct-market sales of 5,365. Compared to the most recent volumes of Fables (12,791), 100 Bullets (6,988), DMZ (6,143), Northlanders (4,355), Scalped (3,524) and Young Liars (2,711), this places the book in the middle of the spectrum.

—–

179 - EX MACHINA (WildStorm)

12/2004: Ex Machina #7  -- 23,172 

12/2005: --

12/2006: Ex Machina #25 -- 19,234

---------------------------------

12/2007: Ex Machina #33 -- 16,067 (- 1.6%)

01/2008: --

02/2008: Ex Machina #34 -- 15,579 (- 3.0%)

03/2008: Ex Machina #35 -- 15,500 (- 0.5%)

04/2008: Ex Machina #36 -- 15,188 (- 2.0%)

05/2008: --

06/2008: Ex Machina #37 -- 14,921 (- 1.8%)

07/2008: --

08/2008: --

09/2008: Ex Machina #38 -- 14,973 (+ 0.4%)

10/2008: --

11/2008: Ex Machina #39 -- 14,194 (- 5.2%)

12/2008: Ex Machina #40 -- 14,067 (- 0.9%)

----------------

6 months: - 5.7%

1 year  : -12.5%

2 years : -26.9%

Ex Machina numbers have held up fairly well in 2008.

—–

185 - REIGN IN HELL

07/2008: Reign in Hell #1 of 8 -- 29,003

08/2008: Reign in Hell #2 of 8 -- 20,459 (-29.5%)

09/2008: Reign in Hell #3 of 8 -- 17,964 (-12.2%)

10/2008: Reign in Hell #4 of 8 -- 15,123 (-15.8%)

11/2008: Reign in Hell #5 of 8 -- 13,565 (-10.3%)

12/2008: Reign in Hell #6 of 8 -- 12,945 (- 4.6%)

Awful numbers.

—–

188 - HELLBLAZER (Vertigo)

12/2001: Hellblazer #169 -- 17,992*

12/2002: Hellblazer #179 -- 17,572*

12/2003: Hellblazer #191 -- 15,283

12/2004: Hellblazer #203 -- 15,304

12/2005: Hellblazer #215 -- 14,405

12/2006: Hellblazer #227 -- 13,231

----------------------------------

12/2007: Hellblazer #239 -- 12,344 (-1.5%)

01/2008: Hellblazer #240 -- 12,213 (-1.1%)

02/2008: Hellblazer #241 -- 11,998 (-1.8%)

03/2008: Hellblazer #242 -- 11,916 (-0.7%)

04/2008: Hellblazer #243 -- 11,958 (+0.4%)

05/2008: Hellblazer #244 -- 11,826 (-1.1%)

06/2008: Hellblazer #245 -- 11,897 (+0.6%)

07/2008: Hellblazer #246 -- 12,088 (+1.6%)

08/2008: --

09/2008: Hellblazer #247 -- 11,851 (-2.0%)

10/2008: Hellblazer #248 -- 11,600 (-2.1%)

11/2008: Hellblazer #249 -- 11,445 (-1.3%)

12/2008: Hellblazer #250 -- 12,478 (+9.0%)

----------------

6 months: + 4.9%

1 year  : + 1.1%

2 years : - 5.7%

5 years : -18.4%

Hellblazer gets a good 1,000 units out of its “anniversary” issue.

—–

192 - JONAH HEX

12/2005: Jonah Hex #2  -- 26,227

12/2006: Jonah Hex #14 -- 18,295

--------------------------------

12/2007: Jonah Hex #26 -- 14,088 (- 3.5%)

01/2008: Jonah Hex #27 -- 13,881 (- 1.5%)

02/2008: Jonah Hex #28 -- 13,614 (- 1.9%)

03/2008: Jonah Hex #29 -- 13,439 (- 1.3%)

04/2008: Jonah Hex #30 -- 13,253 (- 1.4%)

05/2008: Jonah Hex #31 -- 13,140 (- 0.9%)

06/2008: Jonah Hex #32 -- 12,969 (- 1.3%)

07/2008: Jonah Hex #33 -- 14,281 (+10.1%)

08/2008: Jonah Hex #34 -- 12,969 (- 9.2%)

09/2008: Jonah Hex #35 -- 13,231 (+ 2.0%)

10/2008: Jonah Hex #36 -- 12,629 (- 4.6%)

11/2008: Jonah Hex #37 -- 12,537 (- 0.7%)

12/2008: Jonah Hex #38 -- 12,132 (- 3.2%)

----------------

6 months: - 6.5%

1 year  : -13.9%

2 years : -33.7%

Back in a slow decline.

—–

193 - GEARS OF WAR (WildStorm)

10/2008: GoW #1  -- 19,718

11/2008: GoW #2  -- 12,964 (-34.3%)

12/2008: GoW #3  -- 12,095 (- 6.7%)

The book appears to be bottoming out relatively quickly, but the same happened to World of WarCraft before it entered a steady downslide.

—–

198 - THE X-FILES (WildStorm)

07/2008: Special #0      -- 23,805

08/2008: --

09/2008: --

10/2008: --

11/2008: X-Files #1 of 6 -- 16,042 (-32.6%)

12/2008: X-Files #2 of 6 -- 11,562 (-27.9%)

That’s an ugly drop. The X-Files is now down to less than half the sales of the special back in August.

—–

200 - THE AUTHORITY (WildStorm)

12/2001: The Authority v1 #29 -- 40,314*

12/2002: Scorched Earth       -- 28,185*

12/2003: The Authority v2 #8  -- 24,114

12/2004: Revolution #3 of 12  -- 22,027

12/2005: --

12/2006: --

---------------------------------------

12/2007: Prime #3 of 6        -- 16,623 (- 6.2%)

01/2008: Prime #4 of 6        -- 15,058 (- 9.4%)

02/2008: Prime #5 of 6        -- 14,099 (- 6.4%)

03/2008: Prime #6 of 6        -- 13,369 (- 5.2%)

04/2008: --

05/2008: --

06/2008: --

07/2008: --

08/2008: The Authority v4 #1  -- 15,735 (+17.7%)

09/2008: The Authority v4 #2  -- 14,324 (- 9.0%)

10/2008: The Authority v4 #3  -- 13,408 (- 6.4%)

11/2008: The Authority v4 #4  -- 12,450 (- 7.2%)

12/2008: The Authority v4 #5  -- 11,534 (- 7.4%)

----------------

1 year  : -30.6%

2 years :  n.a.

5 years : -52.2%

The highest-selling of the four WildStorm Universe titles still isn’t levelling out yet.

—–

203 - TOP 10: SEASON TWO (WildStorm)

10/2008: Season Two #1 of 4 -- 15,841

11/2008: Season Two #2 of 4 -- 12,710 (-19.8%)

12/2008: Season Two #3 of 4 -- 11,487 (- 9.6%)

It’s been a harsh drop-off for the book. Given that Alan Moore isn’t involved, I’d say DC can still be fairly happy with these numbers.

There’s a good chance that the series will do better once you can put it next to the previous Top 10 books on a shelf.

—–

204 - AMBUSH BUG: YEAR NONE

07/2008: Ambush Bug: Year None #1 of 6 -- 19,088

08/2008: Ambush Bug: Year None #2 of 6 -- 14,627 (-23.4%)

09/2008: Ambush Bug: Year None #3 of 6 -- 13,477 (- 7.8%)

10/2008: --

11/2008: Ambush Bug: Year None #4 of 6 -- 11,972 (-11.2%)

12/2008: Ambush Bug: Year None #5 of 6 -- 11,422 (- 4.6%)

This one’s doing better than I’d have expected.

—–

206 - BLUE BEETLE

12/2006: Blue Beetle #10 -- 21,358

----------------------------------

12/2007: Blue Beetle #22 -- 15,256 (- 2.5%)

01/2008: Blue Beetle #23 -- 14,961 (- 1.9%)

02/2008: Blue Beetle #24 -- 14,378 (- 3.9%)

03/2008: Blue Beetle #25 -- 14,304 (- 0.5%)

04/2008: Blue Beetle #26 -- 14,285 (- 0.1%)

05/2008: Blue Beetle #27 -- 13,802 (- 3.4%)

06/2008: -- 

07/2008: Blue Beetle #28 -- 13,620 (- 1.3%)

07/2008: Blue Beetle #29 -- 13,310 (- 2.3%)

08/2008: Blue Beetle #30 -- 12,669 (- 4.8%)

09/2008: Blue Beetle #31 -- 12,302 (- 2.9%)

10/2008: Blue Beetle #32 -- 11,828 (- 3.9%)

11/2008: Blue Beetle #33 -- 11,452 (- 3.2%)

12/2008: Blue Beetle #34 -- 11,020 (- 3.8%)

----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  : -27.8%

2 years : -48.4%

Cancelled with issue #36.

—–

208 - 100 BULLETS (Vertigo)

12/2001: 100 Bullets #31 -- 17,215*

12/2002: 100 Bullets #41 -- 17,123*

12/2003: 100 Bullets #48 -- 16,946

12/2004: 100 Bullets #56 -- 15,590

12/2005: 100 Bullets #67 -- 14,165

12/2006: 100 Bullets #79 -- 12,907

----------------------------------

12/2007: --

01/2008: 100 Bullets #87 -- 11,244 (- 3.1%)

02/2008: 100 Bullets #88 -- 11,077 (- 1.5%)

03/2008: 100 Bullets #89 -- 10,878 (- 1.8%)

04/2008: 100 Bullets #90 -- 10,856 (- 0.2%)

05/2008: 100 Bullets #91 -- 10,736 (- 1.1%)

06/2008: 100 Bullets #92 -- 10,797 (+ 0.6%)

07/2008: 100 Bullets #93 -- 10,796 (- 0.0%)

08/2008: 100 Bullets #94 -- 10,721 (- 0.7%)

09/2008: 100 Bullets #95 -- 10,669 (- 0.5%)

10/2008: 100 Bullets #96 -- 10,654 (- 0.1%)

11/2008: 100 Bullets #97 -- 10,580 (- 0.7%)

12/2008: 100 Bullets #98 -- 10,515 (- 0.6%)

----------------

6 months: - 2.6%

1 year  :  n.a.

2 years : -18.5%

5 years : -38.0%

100 Bullets sales have been fantastically solid over the last six months.

—–

209 - WILDCATS: WORLD'S END (WildStorm)

12/2001: --

12/2002: Version 3.0 #5  -- 17,200*

12/2003: Version 3.0 #17 -- 13,822

12/2005: Nemesis #4 of 9 -- 15,428

12/2006: --

----------------------------------

07/2008: World's End #1  -- 16,895 (-79.5%)

08/2008: World's End #2  -- 13,311 (-21.2%)

09/2008: World's End #3  -- 13,559 (+ 1.9%)

10/2008: World's End #4  -- 12,431 (- 8.3%)

11/2008: World's End #5  -- 11,280 (- 9.3%)

12/2008: World's End #6  -- 10,450 (- 7.4%)

----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  :  n.a.

2 years :  n.a.

5 years : -24.4%

Like with The Authority, there’s no end in sight yet for the book’s decline.

—–

211 - MADAME XANADU (Vertigo)

06/2008: Madame Xanadu #1  -- 22,073

07/2008: Madame Xanadu #2  -- 16,655 (-24.6%)

08/2008: Madame Xanadu #3  -- 13,052 (- 3.3%)

09/2008: Madame Xanadu #4  -- 12,329 (- 5.5%)

10/2008: Madame Xanadu #5  -- 11,392 (- 7.6%)

11/2008: Madame Xanadu #6  -- 12,340 (+ 8.3%)

12/2008: Madame Xanadu #7  -- 10,272 (-16.8%)

----------------

6 months: -53.5%

To be fair, issue #7 had a Frank Quitely variant-cover edition. That said, this still isn’t great — the six-month drop is terrifying.

—–

212 - MANHUNTER

12/2004: Manhunter #5  -- 15,352 [16,683]

12/2005: Manhunter #17 -- 13,615

--------------------------------

12/2006: Manhunter #26 -- 23,767 (+56.6%)

01/2007: Manhunter #27 -- 17,842 (-24.9%)

02/2007: Manhunter #28 -- 17,182 (- 3.4%)

03/2007: Manhunter #29 -- 17,234 (+ 0.3%)

04/2007: Manhunter #30 -- 16,373 (- 5.0%)

--------------------------------

06/2008: Manhunter #31 -- 15,694 (- 4.2%)

07/2008: Manhunter #32 -- 13,740 (-12.5%)

08/2008: Manhunter #33 -- 12,700 (- 7.6%)

09/2008: Manhunter #34 -- 12,234 (- 3.7%)

10/2008: Manhunter #35 -- 11,652 (- 4.8%)

11/2008: Manhunter #36 -- 11,017 (- 5.5%)

12/2008: Manhunter #37 -- 10,263 (- 6.8%)

----------------

6 months: -34.6%

1 year  :  n.a.

2 years : -56.8%

Axed with issue #38.

—–

216 - THE SPIRIT

12/2006: The Spirit #1     -- 34,558 [36,900]

------------------------------------

12/2007: --

01/2008: The Spirit #12    -- 18,894 (+ 0.0%)

01/2008: The Spirit #13    -- 17,475 (- 7.5%)

02/2008: The Spirit #14    -- 17,277 (- 1.1%)

03/2008: The Spirit #15    -- 16,038 (- 7.2%)

04/2008: The Spirit #16    -- 14,697 (- 8.4%)

05/2008: The Spirit #17    -- 14,057 (- 4.4%)

06/2008: The Spirit #18    -- 13,257 (- 5.7%)

07/2008: The Spirit #19    -- 12,709 (- 4.1%)

08/2008: The Spirit #20    -- 12,358 (- 2.8%)

09/2008: The Spirit #21    -- 11,551 (- 6.5%)

10/2008: The Spirit #22    -- 10,997 (- 4.8%)

11/2008: The Spirit #23    -- 10,372 (- 5.7%)

12/2008: The Spirit #24    -- 10,048 (- 3.1%)

----------------

6 months: -24.2%

1 year  :  n.a.

2 years : -70.9%

The Spirit: Declining steeply and steadily since 2006.

On the plus side, November’s The Sprit Special, reprinting a bunch of Will Eisner strips, sold another 5,926 units in December, bringing the total count to 10,737.

These figures raise two questions. One: Why are they still bothering with new material? And two: Is The Spirit the first comic of the 21st century that has a bigger audience than its Hollywood adaptation?

Maybe it’s a new trend.

—–

218 - UNKNOWN SOLDIER (Vertigo)

10/2008: Unknown Soldier #1  -- 16,038

11/2008: Unknown Soldier #2  -- 10,553 (-34.2%)

12/2008: Unknown Soldier #3  --  9,926 (- 5.9%)

With no more variant-cover edition muddying the waters, it seems Unknown Soldier is levelling out quickly.

—–

219 - BILLY BATSON & THE MAGIC OF SHAZAM (Johnny DC)

07/2008: Billy Batson #1  -- 20,340

08/2008: --

09/2008: Billy Batson #2  -- 12,363 (-39.2%)

10/2008: --

11/2008: --

12/2008: Billy Batson #3  --  9,852 (-20.3%)

A Johnny DC title. See disclaimers.

—–

221 - NORTHLANDERS (Vertigo)

12/2007: Northlanders #1  -- 19,805

01/2008: Northlanders #2  -- 15,945 (-19.5%)

02/2008: Northlanders #3  -- 14,699 (- 7.8%)

03/2008: Northlanders #4  -- 12,851 (-12.6%)

04/2008: Northlanders #5  -- 12,278 (- 4.5%)

05/2008: Northlanders #6  -- 12,009 (- 2.2%)

06/2008: --

07/2008: Northlanders #7  -- 11,918 (- 0.8%)

07/2008: Northlanders #8  -- 11,477 (- 3.7%)

08/2008: Northlanders #9  -- 11,063 (- 3.6%)

09/2008: Northlanders #10 -- 10,738 (- 2.9%)

10/2008: Northlanders #11 -- 10,353 (- 3.6%)

11/2008: Northlanders #12 -- 10,048 (- 3.0%)

12/2008: Northlanders #13 --  9,777 (- 2.7%)

----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  : -50.6%

Business as usual. That year-on-year comparison doesn’t look good.

—–

224 - VIXEN: RETURN OF THE LION

10/2008: Vixen #1 of 5 -- 16,246

11/2008: Vixen #2 of 5 -- 11,206 (-31.0%)

12/2008: Vixen #3 of 5 --  9,739 (-13.1%)

These numbers are abysmal, but that’s what you get for fourth-stringer characters without promotion.

—–

227 - SUPERGIRL: COSMIC ADVENTURES IN THE 8TH GRADE (Johnny DC)

12/2008: Supergirl: CAit8G #1  -- 9,281
228 - TINY TITANS (Johnny DC)

02/2008: Tiny Titans #1  -- 15,238

03/2008: Tiny Titans #2  -- 11,432 (-25.0%)

04/2008: Tiny Titans #3  -- 11,197 (- 2.1%)

05/2008: Tiny Titans #4  -- 10,369 (- 7.4%)

06/2008: Tiny Titans #5  -- 10,909 (+ 5.2%)

07/2008: Tiny Titans #6  -- 10,636 (- 2.5%)

08/2008: Tiny Titans #7  -- 10,234 (- 3.8%)

09/2008: Tiny Titans #8  --  9,795 (- 4.3%)

10/2008: Tiny Titans #9  --  9,521 (- 2.8%)

11/2008: Tiny Titans #10 --  9,239 (- 3.0%)

12/2008: Tiny Titans #11 --  9,085 (- 1.7%)

----------------

6 months: -16.7%

Two Johnny DC books. See small print.

—–

229 - SIMON DARK

12/2007: Simon Dark #3  -- 17,391 (- 6.0%)

01/2008: Simon Dark #4  -- 16,242 (- 6.6%)

02/2008: Simon Dark #5  -- 15,360 (- 5.4%)

03/2008: Simon Dark #6  -- 14,684 (- 4.4%)

04/2008: Simon Dark #7  -- 13,936 (- 5.1%)

05/2008: Simon Dark #8  -- 13,222 (- 5.1%)

06/2008: Simon Dark #9  -- 12,514 (- 5.4%)

07/2008: Simon Dark #10 -- 12,038 (- 3.8%)

08/2008: Simon Dark #11 -- 11,529 (- 4.2%)

09/2008: Simon Dark #12 -- 10,895 (- 5.5%)

10/2008: Simon Dark #13 -- 10,404 (- 4.5%)

11/2008: Simon Dark #14 --  9,582 (- 7.9%)

12/2008: Simon Dark #15 --  9,076 (- 5.3%)

----------------

6 months: -27.5%

1 year  : -47.8%

Cancelled with issue #18.

—–

 - GEN13 (WildStorm)

12/2001: Gen13 #72 -- 17,284*

12/2002: Gen13 #4  -- 19,837*

12/2003: Gen13 #16 -- 12,406

12/2006: Gen13 #3  -- 30,233

----------------------------

12/2007: Gen13 #15 -- 14,330 (- 3.4%)

01/2008: Gen13 #16 -- 13,618 (- 5.0%)

02/2008: Gen13 #17 -- 12,844 (- 5.7%)

03/2008: Gen13 #18 -- 12,396 (- 3.5%)

04/2008: Gen13 #19 -- 11,887 (- 4.1%)

05/2008: Gen13 #20 -- 11,429 (- 3.9%)

06/2008: --

07/2008: --

08/2008: Gen13 #21 -- 11,074 (- 3.1%)

09/2008: Gen13 #22 -- 10,533 (- 4.9%)

10/2008: Gen13 #23 -- 10,061 (- 4.5%)

11/2008: Gen13 #24 --  9,460 (- 6.0%)

12/2008: Gen13 #25 --  8,954 (- 5.4%)

----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  : -37.5%

2 years : -70.4%

5 years : -27.8%

Evidently, the book will be on a bi-monthly schedule starting in April. Quite what that’s meant to achieve, I’m not sure — plainly, these sales are terrible, and another publication frequency won’t change that.

—–

233 - DMZ (Vertigo)

12/2005: DMZ #2  -- 14,840

12/2006: DMZ #14 -- 13,731

--------------------------

12/2007: DMZ #26 -- 11,027 (-2.2%)

01/2008: DMZ #27 -- 10,662 (-3.3%)

02/2008: DMZ #28 -- 10,463 (-1.9%)

03/2008: DMZ #29 -- 10,266 (-1.9%)

04/2008: DMZ #30 -- 10,038 (-2.2%)

05/2008: DMZ #31 --  9,911 (-1.3%)

06/2008: DMZ #32 --  9,760 (-1.5%)

07/2008: DMZ #33 --  9,684 (-0.8%)

08/2008: DMZ #34 --  9,561 (-1.3%)

09/2008: --  

10/2008: DMZ #35 --  9,240 (-3.4%)

11/2008: DMZ #36 --  8,851 (-4.2%)

12/2008: DMZ #37 --  8,823 (-0.3%)

----------------

6 months: - 9.6%

1 year  : -20.0%

2 years : -35.7%

Is it bottoming out, at long last? Anyway, DMZ has been in a slow, fairly consistent decline over the last two years.

—–

239 - AIR (Vertigo)

08/2008: Air #1  -- 13,868

09/2008: Air #2  -- 10,971 (-20.9%)

10/2008: Air #3  -- 10,061 (- 8.3%)

11/2008: Air #4  --  8,913 (-11.4%)

12/2008: Air #5  --  8,412 (- 5.6%)

The book seems to be bottoming out.

That said, issues #1 through #5 were promoted through an ordering scheme that granted retailers special discounts depending on how many copies of the comic they bought. Also, issue #7 will come with a $ 1.00 cover price — another new addition in Vertigo’s marketing arsenal for periodicals.

So, depending on how retailers respond to these things and whether there is any effect on sales to customers, we may see some unusual fluctuations in the book’s numbers over the next few months.

—–

251 - THE WAR THAT TIME FORGOT

05/2008: The War That Time Forgot #1  of 8  -- 18,243

06/2008: The War That Time Forgot #2  of 8  -- 13,296 (-27.1%)

07/2008: The War That Time Forgot #3  of 8  -- 11,407 (-14.2%)

08/2008: The War That Time Forgot #4  of 8  --  9,965 (-12.6%)

09/2008: The War That Time Forgot #5  of 12 --  9,153 (- 8.2%)

10/2008: The War That Time Forgot #6  of 12 --  8,243 (- 9.9%)

11/2008: The War That Time Forgot #7  of 12 --  7,700 (- 6.6%)

12/2008: The War That Time Forgot #8  of 12 --  7,403 (- 3.9%)

----------------

6 months: -44.3%

Finding its level. It’s going to be an awful one.

—–

261 - SCALPED (Vertigo)

12/2007: Scalped #12 --  7,048 (- 3.8%)

01/2008: Scalped #13 --  6,993 (- 0.8%)

02/2008: Scalped #14 --  6,903 (- 1.3%)

03/2008: Scalped #15 --  7,004 (+ 1.5%)

04/2008: Scalped #16 --  7,071 (+ 1.0%)

05/2008: Scalped #17 --  6,927 (- 2.0%)

06/2008: Scalped #18 --  7,020 (+ 1.3%)

07/2008: Scalped #19 --  7,221 (+ 2.9%)

08/2008: Scalped #20 --  7,034 (- 2.6%)

09/2008: Scalped #21 --  7,029 (- 0.1%)

10/2008: Scalped #22 --  6,964 (- 0.9%)

11/2008: Scalped #23 --  6,910 (- 0.8%)

12/2008: Scalped #24 --  6,777 (- 1.9%)

----------------

6 months: - 3.5%

1 year  : - 3.9%
263 - YOUNG LIARS (Vertigo)

03/2008: Young Liars #1  -- 13,177

04/2008: Young Liars #2  --  9,917 (-24.7%)

05/2008: Young Liars #3  --  8,954 (- 9.7%)

06/2008: Young Liars #4  --  8,590 (- 4.1%)

07/2008: Young Liars #5  --  8,172 (- 4.9%)

08/2008: Young Liars #6  --  7,862 (- 3.8%)

09/2008: Young Liars #7  --  7,520 (- 4.4%)

10/2008: Young Liars #8  --  7,265 (- 3.4%)

11/2008: Young Liars #9  --  6,775 (- 6.8%)

12/2008: Young Liars #10 --  6,646 (- 1.9%)

----------------

6 months: -22.6%

Scalped and Young Liars are Vertigo’s lowest-selling ongoing titles right now, both in terms of periodicals and first-month paperback sales in the direct market (see comments on Jack of Fables). This would suggest that they’re probably in trouble, but of course we don’t know the total direct-market sales of the paperbacks or what their sales in the book market at large are.

—–

265 - STORMWATCH: PHD (WildStorm)

12/2002: StormWatch: TA #6   -- 15,996

12/2003: StormWatch: TA #18  -- 10,964

12/2006: StormWatch: PHD #2  -- 21,605

--------------------------------------

08/2008: StormWatch: PHD #13 --  8,650 (-13.6%)

09/2008: StormWatch: PHD #14 --  7,883 (- 8.9%)

10/2008: StormWatch: PHD #15 --  7,411 (- 6.0%)

11/2008: StormWatch: PHD #16 --  6,824 (- 7.9%)

12/2008: StormWatch: PHD #17 --  6,468 (- 5.2%)

----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  :  n.a.

2 years : -70.1%

5 years : -41.0%

StormWatch is absent from the publisher’s April previews. Which can mean a number of things, of course, but at these figures, it would be no surprise if somebody pulled the plug. Then again, maybe it’s going to be bi-monthly, like Gen13, and they forgot to tell people about it.

Not that it’s going to make much of a difference in the long run.

—–

271 - GREATEST HITS (Vertigo)

09/2008: Greatest Hits #1 of 6 -- 13,142

10/2008: Greatest Hits #2 of 6 --  8,222 (-37.4%)

11/2008: Greatest Hits #3 of 6 --  6,737 (-18.1%)

12/2008: Greatest Hits #4 of 6 --  5,991 (-11.1%)

Tanking spectacularly.

—–

278 - SUPER FRIENDS (Johnny DC)

03/2008: Super Friends #1  -- 12,554

04/2008: Super Friends #2  --  8,935 (-28.8%)

05/2008: Super Friends #3  --  8,037 (-10.1%)

06/2008: Super Friends #4  --  8,038 (+ 0.0%)

07/2008: Super Friends #5  --  7,141 (-11.2%)

08/2008: Super Friends #6  --  6,671 (- 6.6%)

09/2008: Super Friends #7  --  6,428 (- 3.6%)

10/2008: Super Friends #8  --  6,153 (- 4.3%)

11/2008: Super Friends #9  --  5,739 (- 6.7%)

12/2008: Super Friends #10 --  5,543 (- 3.4%)

----------------

6 months: -31.0%

A Johnny DC book. See disclaimers.

—–

283 - CHUCK (WildStorm)

06/2008: Chuck #1 of 6 -- 10,513

07/2008: Chuck #2 of 6 --  7,411 (-29.5%)

08/2008: Chuck #3 of 6 --  6,267 (-15.4%)

09/2008: Chuck #4 of 6 --  5,710 (- 8.9%)

10/2008: Chuck #5 of 6 --  5,291 (- 7.3%)

11/2008: --

12/2008: Chuck #6 of 6 --  5,412 (+ 2.3%)

----------------

6 months: -48.5%
223 - ARMY@LOVE: THE ART OF WAR (Vertigo)

12/2007: Army@Love #10 --  6,364 (- 3.8%)

01/2008: Army@Love #11 --  6,023 (- 5.4%)

02/2008: Army@Love #12 --  5,777 (- 4.1%)

03/2008: --

04/2008: --

05/2008: --

06/2008: --

07/2008: --

08/2008: AoW #1 of 6   --  6,692 (+15.8%)

09/2008: AoW #2 of 6   --  5,669 (-15.3%)

10/2008: AoW #3 of 6   --  5,311 (- 6.3%)

11/2008: AoW #4 of 6   --  5,003 (- 5.8%)

12/2008: AoW #5 of 6   --  4,786 (- 4.3%)

----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  : -24.8%
298 - EL DIABLO

09/2008: El Diablo #1 of 6 -- 11,510

10/2008: El Diablo #2 of 6 --  7,349 (-36.2%)

11/2008: El Diablo #3 of 6 --  5,531 (-24.7%)

12/2008: El Diablo #4 of 6 --  4,683 (-15.3%)

I’m not sure there’s much to say here other than that sales are obviously desolate, at this stage.

Mirror’s Edge #2, Push #3, Ferryman #4 and Winter Men Winter Special #1 — all WildStorm titles — shipped in December, but missed the Top 300. For the purposes of the average sales charts below, I’m assuming that they sold 4,683 units each, which was the cut-off point in December. The real numbers are probably lower, obviously.

REORDERS:

131: 20,974 -- Watchmen #1

202: 11,506 -- Batman #681

273:  5,926 -- Spirit Special #1
6-MONTH COMPARISONS

+ 53.9%: Supergirl

+ 32.8%: Detective Comics

+ 19.6%: Nightwing

+ 14.0%: Action Comics

+  4.9%: Hellblazer

+  1.2%: Superman

-  0.1%: Green Lantern

-  2.6%: 100 Bullets

-  3.5%: Scalped

-  5.7%: Ex Machina

-  6.5%: Jonah Hex

-  6.6%: Birds of Prey

-  7.1%: GL Corps

-  7.2%: Outsiders

-  9.6%: DMZ

- 11.2%: JSA

- 12.4%: Jack of Fables

- 12.6%: JLA

- 12.6%: Superman/Batman

- 12.9%: Wonder Woman

- 13.4%: Final Crisis

- 13.7%: Batman Confidential

- 14.0%: Flash

- 16.7%: Tiny Titans

- 18.3%: Teen Titans

- 19.1%: Green Arrow

- 21.5%: Tangent

- 22.1%: Booster Gold

- 22.6%: Young Liars

- 24.2%: The Spirit

- 26.8%: House of Mystery

- 27.1%: Brave & Bold

- 27.5%: Simon Dark

- 29.0%: Batman: Gotham After Midnight

- 31.0%: Super Friends

- 31.1%: WoW

- 34.6%: Manhunter

- 37.2%: Rann/Thanagar

- 28.2%: Titans

- 44.3%: The War That Time Forgot

- 48.2%: Trinity

- 48.5%: Chuck

- 53.5%: Madame Xanadu

—–

1-YEAR COMPARISONS

+ 23.5%: Batman

+ 22.1%: Superman

+ 20.0%: Supergirl

+  4.3%: Detective Comics

+  1.6%: Action Comics

+  1.1%: Hellblazer

-  3.9%: Scalped

-  7.4%: Fables

- 12.5%: Ex Machina

- 12.8%: GL Corps

- 13.4%: Superman/Batman

- 13.9%: Jonah Hex

- 17.9%: Jack of Fables

- 18.4%: Birds of Prey

- 19.3%: Green Lantern

- 20.0%: DMZ

- 20.3%: Outsiders

- 23.4%: JSA

- 24.1%: JLA

- 24.8%: Army@Love

- 27.6%: Wonder Woman

- 27.8%: Blue Beetle

- 28.6%: Nightwing

- 29.8%: Booster Gold

- 30.6%: The Authority

- 31.6%: Teen Titans

- 37.5%: Gen13

- 39.2%: Green Arrow

- 39.5%: Flash

- 42.4%: Brave & Bold

- 42.7%: Robin

- 47.8%: Simon Dark

- 50.6%: Northlanders

- 51.0%: WoW

- 51.6%: LoSH

—–

2-YEAR COMPARISONS

+ 15.3%: Batman

+ 13.7%: GL Corps

+ 13.3%: Detective Comics

+  0.9%: Nightwing

-  5.7%: Hellblazer

-  6.1%: Outsiders

-  8.7%: Robin

- 12.1%: Fables

- 18.5%: 100 Bullets

- 21.9%: Supergirl

- 23.9%: Green Arrow

- 26.9%: Ex Machina

- 32.4%: Birds of Prey

- 32.5%: Jack of Fables

- 33.4%: JSA

- 33.4%: LoSH

- 33.7%: Jonah Hex

- 35.7%: DMZ

- 38.8%: Teen Titans

- 43.8%: Superman/Batman

- 44.8%: JLA

- 48.4%: Blue Beetle

- 50.6%: Flash

- 56.8%: Manhunter

- 64.9%: Batman Confidential

- 70.1%: StormWatch

- 70.4%: Gen13

- 70.9%: The Spirit

—–

5-YEAR COMPARISONS

+108.4%: Green Lantern

+ 93.8%: Action Comics

+ 78.2%: Detective Comics

+ 59.6%: JSA

+ 25.9%: JLA

+ 21.5%: Nightwing

+ 16.8%: Superman

+ 10.6%: Wonder Woman

-  4.4%: Batman

-  8.7%: Robin

- 11.2%: Fables

- 11.4%: LoSH

- 18.4%: Hellblazer

- 21.7%: Batgirl

- 24.1%: Flash

- 24.4%: Wildcats

- 27.8%: Gen13

- 31.6%: Outsiders

- 33.6%: Green Arrow

- 34.0%: Birds of Prey

- 38.0%: 100 Bullets

- 38.8%: Teen Titans

- 52.2%: The Authority

- 52.3%: Superman/Batman

—–

Average Periodical Sales

(not counting reprints, reorders shipping after the initial month of release, Johnny DC titles and magazines)

DC COMICS

12/2003: 26,253

12/2004: 30,589

12/2005: 36,147

12/2006: 34,418

---------------

12/2007: 33,138 (+12.6%)

01/2008: 27,033 (-18.4%)

02/2008: 27,652 (+ 2.3%)

03/2008: 26,423 (- 4.5%)

04/2008: 28,051 (+ 6.1%)

05/2008: 27,075 (- 3.5%)

06/2008: 27,367 (+ 1.1%)

07/2008: 27,436 (+ 0.3%)**

08/2008: 29,678 (+ 8.2%)

09/2008: 25,562 (-13.9%)

10/2008: 29,109 (+13.9%)**

11/2008: 25,340 (-13.0%)

12/2008: 26,793 (+ 5.7%)**

----------------

6 months: - 2.1%

1 year  : -19.2%

2 years : -22.2%

3 years : -25.9%

4 years : -12.4%

5 years : + 2.1%
DC UNIVERSE

12/2003: 30,866

12/2004: 36,925

12/2005: 44,993

12/2006: 44,641

---------------

12/2007: 40,074 (+ 7.6%)

01/2008: 33,654 (-16.0%)

02/2008: 35,994 (+ 7.0%)

03/2008: 33,151 (- 7.9%)

04/2008: 35,452 (+ 6.9%)

05/2008: 35,230 (- 0.6%)

06/2008: 35,800 (+ 1.6%)

07/2008: 35,553 (- 0.7%)

08/2008: 38,502 (+ 8.3%)

09/2008: 33,591 (-13.0%)

10/2008: 37,273 (+11.0%)

11/2008: 33,096 (-11.2%)

12/2008: 35,050 (+ 5.9%)

----------------

6 months: - 2.1%

1 year  : -12.5%

2 years : -21.5%

3 years : -22.1%

4 years : - 5.1%

5 years : +13.6%
VERTIGO

12/2003: 16,497

12/2004: 14,649

12/2005: 16,320

12/2006: 13,834

---------------

12/2007: 11,035 (+ 0.8%)

01/2008: 10,115 (- 8.3%)

02/2008: 10,885 (+ 7.6%)

03/2008: 10,484 (- 3.7%)

04/2008: 10,550 (+ 0.6%)

05/2008: 10,418 (- 1.3%)

06/2008: 10,491 (+ 0.7%)

07/2008: 10,821 (+ 3.2%)**

08/2008: 10,979 (+ 1.5%)

09/2008: 11,748 (+ 7.0%)

10/2008: 11,284 (- 4.0%)

11/2008: 11,936 (+ 5.8%)

12/2008: 11,603 (- 2.8%)

----------------

6 months: +10.6%

1 year  : + 5.2%

2 years : -16.1%

3 years : -28.9%

4 years : -20.8% 

5 years : -29.7%
WILDSTORM

12/2003: 18,359

12/2004: 15,693

12/2005: 15,068

12/2006: 17,288

---------------

12/2007: 15,601 (+ 3.3%)

01/2008: 14,033 (-10.1%)

02/2008: 13,155 (- 6.3%)

03/2008: 12,842 (- 2.4%)

04/2008: 12,156 (- 5.3%)

05/2008:  9,812 (-19.3%)

06/2008:  9,806 (- 0.1%)

07/2008:  9,875 (+ 0.7%)**

08/2008: 10,064 (+ 1.9%)

09/2008: 11,864 (+17.9%)

10/2008: 10,736 (- 9.5%)**

11/2008: 10,220 (- 4.8%)

12/2008:  9,415 (- 7.9%)**

----------------

6 months: - 4.0%

1 year  : -39.7%

2 years : -45.5%

3 years : -37.5%

4 years : -40.0%

5 years : -48.7%

—–

OTHER PUBLISHERS

17 - BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER (Dark Horse Comics)

12/2001: Buffy #40 --  15,700*

12/2002: Buffy #52 --  15,701*

12/2003: --

-----------------------------

12/2007: Buffy #9  --  89,556 (- 2.2%)

01/2008: Buffy #10 --  88,474 (- 1.2%)

02/2008: Buffy #11 --  88,070 (- 0.5%)

03/2008: Buffy #12 --  88,930 (+ 1.0%)

04/2008: Buffy #13 --  83,580 (- 6.0%)

05/2008: Buffy #14 --  82,069 (- 1.8%)

06/2008: Buffy #15 --  80,464 (- 2.0%)

07/2008: Buffy #16 --  82,031 (+ 2.0%)

08/2008: Buffy #17 --  79,307 (- 3.3%)

09/2008: Buffy #18 --  77,589 (- 2.2%)

10/2008: --

11/2008: Buffy #19 --  74,202 (- 4.4%)

12/2008: Buffy #20 --  71,896 (- 3.1%)

-----------------

6 months: - 10.7%

1 year  : - 19.7%

5 years :   n.a.
64 - ANGEL: AFTER THE FALL (IDW)

12/2001: Angel #4               -- 14,882*

12/2005: Old Friends #1 of 5    -- 17,164

12/2006: Auld Lang Syne #2 of 5 --  7,358

-----------------------------------------

12/2007: After the Fall #2      -- 44,792 (-  5.8%) [56,396]

01/2008: After the Fall #3      -- 46,013 (+  2.7%) [50,175]

02/2008: After the Fall #4      -- 48,407 (+  5.2%) [57,555]

03/2008: After the Fall #5      -- 49,558 (+  2.4%) 

04/2008: After the Fall #6      -- 46,645 (-  5.9%) [51,044]

05/2008: After the Fall #7      -- 45,430 (-  2.6%)

06/2008: After the Fall #8      -- 47,888 (+  5.4%)

06/2008: After the Fall #9      -- 47,081 (-  1.7%)

07/2008: After the Fall #10     -- 43,024 (-  8.6%) [45,510]

08/2008: After the Fall #11     -- 44,905 (+  4.4%)

09/2008: After the Fall #12     -- 43,019 (-  4.2%)

10/2008: After the Fall #13     -- 40,838 (-  5.1%)

11/2008: After the Fall #14     -- 38,954 (-  4.6%)

12/2008: After the Fall #15     -- 37,649 (-  3.4%)

-----------------

6 months: - 20.7%

1 year  : - 16.0%

2 years : +411.7%

Joss Whedon continues to dominate the Top 300 chart in terms of non-Marvel, non-DC books. There were variant-cover editions for both series, as usual.

—–

91 - STAR WARS: LEGACY (Dark Horse Comics)

12/2006: --

----------------------------------------

12/2007: -- 

01/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #18 -- 31,038 (-0.5%)

02/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #19 -- 30,953 (-0.3%)

02/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #20 -- 29,896 (-3.4%)

03/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #21 -- 30,228 (+1.1%)

04/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #22 -- 30,205 (-0.1%)

05/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #23 -- 30,355 (+0.5%)

05/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #24 -- 29,601 (-2.5%)

06/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #25 -- 29,548 (-0.2%)

07/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #26 -- 29,123 (-1.4%)

08/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #27 -- 28,549 (-2.0%)

09/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #28 -- 29,331 (+2.7%)

10/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #29 -- 28,469 (-2.9%)

11/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #30 -- 28,032 (-1.5%)

12/2008: Star Wars: Legacy #31 -- 27,386 (-2.3%)

----------------

6 months: - 7.3%

1 year  :  n.a.

2 years :  n.a.

Is the “Vector” crossover speeding up the book’s decline? Anyway, these are still fairly solid numbers overall.

—–

96 - THE BOYS (Dynamite Entertainment)

12/2006: The Boys #6  -- 27,039 [35,173]

-------------------------------

12/2007: The Boys #13 -- 29,195 (- 1.9%)

01/2008: The Boys #14 -- 28,559 (- 2.2%)

02/2008: The Boys #15 -- 28,347 (- 0.7%)

03/2008: The Boys #16 -- 27,886 (- 1.6%)

04/2008: The Boys #17 -- 28,057 (+ 0.6%)

05/2008: The Boys #18 -- 27,951 (- 0.4%)

06/2008: The Boys #19 -- 27,576 (- 1.3%)

07/2008: The Boys #20 -- 27,571 (- 0.0%)

08/2008: The Boys #21 -- 27,523 (- 0.2%)

09/2008: The Boys #22 -- 27,104 (- 1.5%)

10/2008: The Boys #23 -- 28,864 (+ 6.5%)

10/2008: The Boys #24 -- 27,825 (- 3.6%)

11/2008: --

12/2008: The Boys #25 -- 27,134 (- 2.5%)

----------------

6 months: - 1.6%

1 year  : - 7.1%

2 years : + 0.4%

Slipping a bit over the last two months, but still doing well on balance.

—–

102 - THE UMBRELLA ACADEMY (Dark Horse Comics)

09/2007: Apocalypse Suite #1 of 6 -- 37,698 [48,514]

10/2007: Apocalypse Suite #2 of 6 -- 31,176 [36,002]

11/2007: Apocalypse Suite #3 of 6 -- 29,508 [34,699]

12/2007: Apocalypse Suite #4 of 6 -- 28,703 [31,583]

01/2008: Apocalypse Suite #5 of 6 -- 29,736

02/2008: Apocalypse Suite #6 of 6 -- 28,879

-------------------------------------------

11/2008: Dallas #1 of 6           -- 36,791 (+27.4%)

12/2008: Dallas #2 of 6           -- 25,396 (-31.0%)

-----------------

1 year  : - 11.5%

Ho-hum. These are still great numbers for a new property, but it doesn’t look like The Umbrella Academy: Dallas can repeat the success of the first series.

That said, paperback collections are another story, of course — maybe the audience is simply moving to a different format here.

—–

114 - THE WALKING DEAD (Image Comics)

12/2003: Walking Dead #3  --  6,994

12/2004: Walking Dead #14 -- 14,713 [15,487]

12/2005: --

12/2006: Walking Dead #33 -- 21,235

-----------------------------------

12/2007: Walking Dead #45 -- 22,674 (+ 0.5%)

01/2008: --

02/2008: Walking Dead #46 -- 22,870 (+ 0.9%)

03/2008: Walking Dead #47 -- 22,612 (- 1.1%)

04/2008: Walking Dead #48 -- 22,465 (- 0.7%)

05/2008: Walking Dead #49 -- 23,102 (+ 2.8%)

06/2008: --

07/2008: Walking Dead #50 -- 27,691 (+19.9%)

08/2008: Walking Dead #51 -- 23,121 (-16.5%)

09/2008: Walking Dead #52 -- 23,627 (+ 2.2%)

10/2008: Walking Dead #53 -- 24,094 (+ 2.0%)

11/2008: Walking Dead #54 -- 24,093 (- 0.0%)

11/2008: Walking Dead #55 -- 23,885 (- 0.9%)

12/2008: Walking Dead #56 -- 23,582 (- 1.3%)

-----------------

6 months:  n.a.

1 year  : +  4.0%

2 years : + 11.1%

5 years : +237.2%

It seems The Walking Dead is at a point where it’s reached the ceiling again, for the time being.

—–

Disclaimers, et cetera

The numbers above are estimates for comic-book sales in the North American direct market, as calculated by ICv2.com according to the chart and index information provided by Diamond Comic Distributors.

ICv2.com‘s estimates are traditionally known to be somewhat lower than the actual numbers, but they are consistent from month to month, so the trends they show are fairly accurate. Since it’s a “month-to-month” column, the comments, unless otherwise noted, are on the most recent month. The estimates from March 2001 to February 2003 (marked with an asterisk) were for initial orders rather than actual sales, so they’re only roughly compatible with the subsequent figures.

Bear in mind that the figures measure sales to retailers, not customers. Also, these numbers do not include sales to bookstores, newsstands, other mass market retail chains or the United Kingdom. Reorders are included, so long as they either reached stores in a book’s initial month of release or were strong enough to make the chart again in a subsequent month.

If additional copies of an issue did appear on the chart after the book’s initial month of release, you can see the total number of copies sold in parenthesis behind those issues (e.g. “[36,599]“). Should more than one issue have shipped in a month which is relevant for one of the long-term comparisons, the average will be used.

Titles released under the Johnny DC imprint and magazines, such as Mad, mostly sell through channels other than the direct market, so direct-market sales don’t tell us much about their performance. For most Vertigo and some WildStorm titles, collection sales tend to be a significant factor, so the numbers for those books should be taken with a grain of salt as well. To learn (a little) more about Vertigo’s collection sales, go right here.

** Two asterisks after a given month in the average charts mean that one or more periodical release did not make the Top 300 chart in that month. In those cases, it’s assumed that said releases sold as many units as the No. 300 comic on the chart for that month for the purposes of the chart, although its actual sales may be less than that.

—–

Germany-based Marc-Oliver Frisch has a weblog and regularly contributes to Comicgate.

Comments

  1. MBunge says:

    The reason DC is having so much trouble launching new series isn’t just because readers have been trained to only care about big event book that have Superman or Batman in them. It’s also because they’ve been burned too many times by stuff like VIGILANTE #1.

    I mean, the story is basic enough and the storytelling competent enough that it’s not utterly incomprehensible. But the book’s plot and entire premise can only be fully understood and appreciated if you’ve read a bunch of other comics.

    Mike

  2. It’s kind of funny that the numbers that led to Flash being canceled in 2008 were considered decent enough to let a relatively unknown writer stay on the book back in 2001. Also funny considering that that writer managed to build it up to roughly 50K/month by the time he left. And even funnier considering that he’s now one of DC’s premier superstar writers. And guess who’s handling the relaunch…?

  3. Charles Knight says:

    What next for wildstorm? The world ended and nobody notice – is it a line who’s time has passed?

  4. Matt D says:

    It’s like the wasteland.

    Someone could seriously write a book about DC’s loss of market share since Infinite Crisis 1 with a healthy chapter on the Flash relaunch, the Wonder Woman relaunch, Countdown, delays in general, the massive back-turning away from the loads of new readers that they picked up in the march-up to Infinite Crisis from Marvel the growing of the market to focus on nostalgia instead, to Final Crisis being an art project (no matter how good) that was about the complete opposite of the LCD-appealing Civil War that came at the absolute worst time, the inability to capitalize on the success of the first two All-Star titles or even on their big events that do work like 52, and one last one on all the editorial disconnect which can feature Jim Shooter and Chuck Dixon and what not. It’s been a fascinating, disasterous few years, following DC.

    It’s like they have no idea how to sell to the direct market anymore or just don’t care anymore.

  5. Wildstorm seems to be keeping afloat by selling its video game tie-in comics at places other than comic shops. “World of Warcraft” is sold at Border’s, GameStop and Best Buy. That’s pretty cool.

  6. PerDegaton says:

    Ouch. These numbers are depressing. I hope the creators on some of these books are making them for themselves, because people sure as hell aren’t reading them. DC and Marvel should really stop flooding the market with product. I know it isn’t going to happen, but they really should.

    Anyone reading “Batman VS Superman VS Vampires VS Werewolves”? Can you tell me who wins? My money’s on Werewolves…

  7. it’s too bad that Terra and Vixen sold so poorly. those have been two wonderful miniseries, especially in terms of art (with Amanda Conner and Cafu, respectively).

  8. Was the Quietly cover for Madame Xandau really #7? Looks like #6 from your numbers…

  9. It does seem as though DC is unable (or unwilling) to cater to the needs of its customer base. Instead of the long-promised POWER GIRL, ZATANNA and James Robinson JUSTICE LEAGUE series, we get titles like VIGILANTE and R.E.B.E.L.S. that appeal to a more select crowd, if at all.

    As for me, the only DC projects I’m truly looking forward to are THE BLACKEST NIGHT and THE FLASH: REBIRTH. Geoff Johns is off ACTION COMICS and JUSTICE SOCIETY OF AMERICA, NIGHTWING has been cancelled, DETECTIVE COMICS will be on hiatus, and sales for SECRET SIX are not looking good. Nothing else is really grabbing my attention, I’m afraid…

    …Well, I suppose new Marvel titles like AGENTS OF ATLAS and SECRET WARRIORS are, but that doesn’t exactly help DC Comics much…

  10. Firefly says:

    As an astute fan of DC Comics, I have to say that the comments on this one are right on.

    First of all, why a VIGILANTE series? What’s the point? And especially one as poorly written and drawn as this one?

    Second, it might behoove DC to kill the JONAH HEX book already and reboot it when the movie comes out. Or better yet, why not let the original artist and co-creator himself take a few stabs at it. Tony DeZuniga is alive and well and should be offered at least a fill-in issue. I see him at the conventions and he’s still got chops!!!!!!

    Third, THE UNKNOWN SOLDIER reboot is not only a lame-ass attempt to contemporize the property, but disrespectful to the original series. There’s no evidence that the writer even cares about the previous incarnations, so why the hell should readers care about this series? How about giving us some hardcore US adventures during WWII — make it a period book —instead of CONSTANTLY trying to update the character to make him more “relevant.” Ridiculous!

    Finally, only DC would cut BLUE BEETLE when the CN’s BRAVE AND THE BOLD cartoon is going strong with not one, not two, but three episodes featuring the Blue Beetle. Where is the synergy?

    DC Comics: what a mess!

  11. “Or better yet, why not let the original artist and co-creator himself take a few stabs at it.”

    They already did. Tony DeZuniga did the artwork for Jonah Hex #5 and #9 back in 2006.

  12. Alan Coil says:

    Flash wasn’t cancelled due to sales.

    Jonah Hex is selling big numbers in trade form, so it is in no immediate danger of being cancelled.

    Blue Beetle was cancelled due to sales. As good as it was, people just weren’t buying it. And I sincerely doubt a cartoon is going to boost sales of any comic. Parents just don’t buy comics for their children today like they did in the past. Parents today are, mostly, stupid.

  13. Cookylamoo says:

    Maybe DC should give up the idea of Character Based Comics altogether since the writers matter more now than who’s in the books. Instead of Superman, Batman, Booster Gold and whatever, DC could publish Grant Morrison Comics, Frank Miller Comics, Geoff Johns Comics, James Robinson Comics and of course, Gail Simone Comics.

  14. chasdom says:

    “Finally, only DC would cut BLUE BEETLE when the CN’s BRAVE AND THE BOLD cartoon is going strong with not one, not two, but three episodes featuring the Blue Beetle. Where is the synergy?”

    Just a guess here, but it looks like the synergy between DC and Other Media (for Blue Beetle, The Spirit, Jonah Hex, etc.) is through the DC Collected Editions department. It looks like the strategy is to make sure there are enough new-ish books in bookstores when the TV show or Movie is shown. At that point, the individual issues primarily exist to create the bookstore product for cross-media promotion.

    Thus, it makes sense to maintain those 3 titles at sales levels that would normally require cancellation until the Other Media release; at that point though, why continue with producing new material? DC’s got a backlog of monthlies on all 3 properties that will result in “new” collected editions for the next year or two.

    I would expect that The Spirit monthly series will be ending soon, with the Other Media window having passed and no movie sequel on the horizon.

  15. volde says:

    “Parents just don’t buy comics for their children today like they did in the past. Parents today are, mostly, stupid.”

    And why should they buy a 22 pages long book with funny pictures for 4$ which will last like 10 minutes for their kid? I wouldn`t buy it for such cost either.

  16. Cookylamoo says:

    True, since the main purpose of toys is to keep kids busy and quiet, (maybe even squeeze in some marital sex) a comic is practically worthless. For three times the amount of Final Crisis, you can send the brats out to a movie and be free of them for 3 hours, if you’re lucky. For ten times the amount, you can buy them a video game that will keep them hypnotized for days. Plus, you don’t have to risk their finding out that God is a vampire.

  17. Firefly says:

    SKFK——Funny, I somehow missed those two meager issues in which they let Tony do his thing in JONAH HEX way back, like, what, three years ago?

    Why not get him to do more issues rather than employing the Euro flavor of the month to pay tribute to Sergio Leone?

    As I said, Tony still have the chops. They’re squandering a golden opportunity to ensure the book’s quality and a continuity with DC’s real history (not the kind of character history they fabricate every so often with a big revisionist miniseries), don’t you think?

  18. I’m amazed at the insight into parenting these comments present (sarcasm fully intended).

    And I say that as the father of three boys.

  19. MBunge says:

    “I’m amazed at the insight into parenting these comments present (sarcasm fully intended).

    And I say that as the father of three boys.”

    Okay, who’s going to save this comment for the day when one of Peter Krause’s little guys climbs up into a clock tower with a rifle?

    Mike

  20. AERose says:

    “Someone could seriously write a book about DC’s loss of market share”

    But no one would read it.

    Not really true, or course a few people would read it, much to the detriment of us all as they carried back the precious insights from the book to fuel their never-fucking-ending arguments about DIDIOQUESADAFINALCRISISOMDBNDWTFBBQ. Who cares if the rubes don’t read DC anymore? Is DC itself, home of some of the most profitable licensable characters ever, threatened? Will they change their publishing plan for the worse? (How could they? Most of their comics suck to begin with.) Is DC just *this* close to figuring out how to turn Superman into a million seller, if they would only realize the secret to perpetual comic motion?

    The sun will rise tomorrow if DC publishes a special issue of JLA which consists entirely of graphic representations of Grant Morrison’s pale Scottish moon, life goes on regardless of DC’s market share. Superhero comic books will continue to be, by and large, a laughable little niche market and it should be. Don’t try to save it, don’t cry for its marginalization, just buy the books when they’re good and don’t otherwise. DC and Marvel are just manufacturers, sometimes they put out a product worthwhile and sometimes they don’t. Emotional investment is idiotic.

  21. Steven R. Stahl says:

    I’ve read coverage of DC’s comics for years, but not the comics (with rare exceptions: DAY OF VENGEANCE, INFINITE CRISIS, DEATH OF THE NEW GODS). From a distance, the characters seem old, the DC universe seems old — the impression I repeatedly get is that the DC characters are farther away from the SF/fantasy realm than the Marvel characters are. They’re more like comic strip characters whose creators have just run out of ideas for entertaining things for them to do.

    When was the last time the DC universe functioned as a stable, shared universe concept, when fans, creators, and editors all knew what a hero’s role (subject to deliberate change) in that universe was? The impression I get now is that the “shared universe” concept has been broken for years and, rather than try to fix it, the DC people would rather try to do “meta” stories about the breakdown. That’s not a viable editorial plan.

    SRS

  22. Well, emotional investment in the DC Universe didn’t used to be idiotic, but after twenty plus years of reboots, revamps, reworkings, retoolings, and retrofitting, you can’t be emotional about any of the characters anymore. History and time in the DC Universe has become completely dysfunctional; that was proved brilliantly in Morrison’s Final Crisis. In fact, that might have been the whole point! Anyway, to answer Steven’s question, I believe the last time the DC Universe functioned as a stable, shared universe was 1986-early 1990. When Hawkworld was released as an ongoing title in 1990, that was the first major cog in post-Crisis continuity.

  23. Ray,

    “Was the Quietly cover for Madame Xandau really #7? Looks like #6 from your numbers… ”

    Ah, yes. Sorry about the confusion.

  24. baxtos says:

    I’ve been a long time Marvel fan meaning REALLY meaning to enjoy some DC books because, hey, they’re super heroes too. And I’ve enjoyed bits here and there but mostly I feel clueless when I open one and I mean, I read Wizard, surf the web, etc… But still it’s just confusing.

    I’ve read all of FC. I think I got maybe 20% of it. So, no, I’ve not enjoyed it.

    I think the last DC I really enjoyed were the “Last son” Action comics issues. Now THIS is the way to go : recognizable characters, Great story, Breathtaking art.

    Oh yeah the art. Come on DC, wake up on that front too, some of the published stuff is really embarassing. It often borders on the bad or boring side. Marvel needs some competiion, or they’ll get lazy and bad somewhere down the road!!

  25. MBunge,

    Perfect response! That made me laugh.

  26. AERose says:

    “Well, emotional investment in the DC Universe didn’t used to be idiotic,”

    Misses my point entirely. DC is a producer, the books are the product (and the DCU is the meta-product). It’s asinine to be emotionally invested in the producer, because the producer is only capable of doing two things: creating product that is worthwhile and creating product that is not worthwhile. It has no loyalties and has no interest in the quality of what it produces, except for the fact that if it produces worthwhile items it will be generally more successful.

    My specific objections are to the ideas of A.) loyalty to comic companies, and B.) using the financial numbers to justify whatever team-affiliation you’ve chosen for yourself (DC Fan, Marvel Fan, pro-BND, anti-BND, whatever).

    A secondary objection I have is the insistence that one title reflects on an unrelated title because they both come from the same company. IE, “I didn’t like Final Crisis so I won’t read other DC titles!” which punishes a publisher because it didn’t work to maintain a fan’s loyalty, nevermind that the fan should have never been loyal to begin with. It’s kind of a double-whammy of stupidity, as a fan gets butthurt over a completely farcical idea of obligation, and as a result drops at least one other book that they were actually enjoying. (Unless of course they’ve been reading comics that they haven’t been enjoying, which is laughable in and of itself.)

    In the end, there are books worth reading and books not worth reading, and each book is distinct of all the others. Allowing perception to be colored by company affiliation is stupid.

  27. “First of all, why a VIGILANTE series? What’s the point? And especially one as poorly written and drawn as this one?”

    Well, for the same reason publishers release new books. They believe they have a concept and material that will sell. Duh.

    Many people pointed to the poor box office of THE SPIRIT and snarkily comment, “I didn’t realize there was a demand for a Spirit movie.”

    Well, again, they thought they had a movie that would sell tickets. DUH. If new releases were based entirely on demand, there would be no new television programs. We’d get nothing but reruns, remakes, or the test pattern. Same with comics.

    “Second, it might behoove DC to kill the JONAH HEX book already and reboot it when the movie comes out. Or better yet, why not let the original artist and co-creator himself take a few stabs at it.”

    Isn’t this reboot nonsense really what’s killing monthly comic books? How many times have Wonder Woman and The Flash been rebooted? Perhaps the idea of publishing comics like “seasons” of a television show has been run into the ground.

    Maybe it’s time for the Big Two to give their established characters continuing titles, keep the trademarks active, start the numbering at #1 and DON’T STOP! Not selling, then keep searching for a team until it sells. It’s almost as though readers are guaranteed that their favorite title will eventually be discontinued, and that guarantees that many won’t start buying.

  28. Alan Coil says:

    volde said:

    “And why should they [[parents]] buy a 22 pages long book with funny pictures for 4$ which will last like 10 minutes for their kid? I wouldn`t buy it for such cost either.”

    Firstly, comics for kids are only $2.50, not $4.

    Secondly, kids REALLY enjoy reading the same books over and over, just like they like to view the same movie over and over. Kids get big entertainment for their buck.

  29. Alan Coil says:

    Rich said:

    “Maybe it’s time for the Big Two to give their established characters continuing titles, keep the trademarks active, start the numbering at #1…”

    Marvel does that all the time. Then, when a “milestone” issue is near, they revert to the old numbering. Sometimes they even put both numbers on the cover. What’s a new reader supposed to think?

  30. It’s not like anyone can’t say they didn’t see this coming.

    DC and its editorial leader has exemplified, over and over again that they are amateurs who really don’t know what they’re doing otherwise their screw ups wouldn’t happen so frequently. Because that’s basically what DC has become since Infinite Crisis, a mess of a publishing house that’s in a constant Infinite Crisis with screw up after screw up after screw up.

    It comes from a place of ego, where those in charge believe so strongly they’re right, they disregard their readers and everyone else at all
    costs. Because with their output, DC has displayed that they aren’t producing for an audience, they’re producing for themselves, which is why they are in the situation they’re in.

    Readers of today have a bad rap due to the incessant complaining but no one ever stopped to think that maybe, just maybe, they’re complaining for a reason.

    Of course, egotists never think they’re own shit stinks. DC’s leader and its stable of creators have become chefs in a kitchen serving poop-pot-pie as a main course who are clueless when the diners cry ‘PU’.

  31. “Parents just don’t buy comics for their children today like they did in the past. Parents today are, mostly, stupid.”

    Um. No. We’re not.

    If we were stupid, we’d spend our money on comic books that offer little escape from the worries that families encounter nowadays.

    Just ’cause they’re selling it doesn’t mean we have to buy it. If we don’t see much value in it, we won’t get it.

    ‘Cause doing otherwise would be, you know, stupid.

  32. AERose says:

    “Readers of today have a bad rap due to the incessant complaining but no one ever stopped to think that maybe, just maybe, they’re complaining for a reason.”

    They’re complaining because they keep buying crap. Active clause: they keep buying crap.

  33. Firefly says:

    If anyone wants to read some great JONAH HEX comics, buy SHOWCASE JONAH HEX VOL. 1.

    If anyone wants to buy some great UNKNOWN SOLDIER comics, go buy SHOWCASE UNKNOWN SOLDIER VOL. 1.

    If anyone wants to read some great VIGILANTE comics, go buy ESSENTIAL PUNISHER VOL. 1.

    Case closed.

  34. Firefly says:

    That, boys and girls, is my prescription to buying quality comics in 2009!

  35. Heinz Hochkoepper says:

    AERose:
    I don’t think Jim missed your point at all, it reads more like you are missing his. It definitely isn’t true that it’s “asinine to be emotionally invested in the producer” when said producer’s product is (for the most part) set in a shared continuity that requires a certain degree of intellectual and emotional investment to follow it across multiple titles. Same with Marvel: If you’re not emotionally invested in the ‘Dark Reign’ concept, you can pretty much stop buying Marvel comícs right now, since most of their books just won’t be entertaining to you.

    Steven:
    I strongly disagree with your birds-eye view of the two major superhero universes. I’ve only followed a handful of books from both publishers in the last few years, but I read a lot about the books and like to stay up-to-date by reading reviews and previews, and if I had to sum up my general impressions, I would say that the Marvel universe is a pretty uniform place where almost every book seems to be all about the superficial thrills and big action setpieces of a blockbuster action film mixed in with some of the hard-edged cynicism of a Tarantino movie, while the DC universe is a much more multi-faceted place, where grimly serious melodrama (Geoff Johns), quirky humor (Dr. Thirteen, Ambush Bug) and incredibly ambitious metatextual explorations (Grant Morrison) can exist side by side, sometimes even within a single book (52).

    Marc-Oliver: To pick up on a discussion from last month, I really enjoyed the humorous tone this month, the Green Lantern and Wonder Woman comments were laugh-out-loud-funny. Also, I enjoyed your very well-balanced comments about the low-selling Vertigo titles.

  36. Ranald says:

    It’s fair to say from these numbers that Final Crisis is a hit, in the context of a company that’s not in great shape overall. If people weren’t enjoying the series the numbers wouldn’t be that stable. Which makes DC’s decision to not launch any properties out of it, and bury it at convention panels, all a bit peculiar.

  37. Charles Knight says:

    “Secondly, kids REALLY enjoy reading the same books over and over, just like they like to view the same movie over and over. Kids get big entertainment for their buck. ”

    But generally not on the same day – that two hour cheapo film will keep him sat down *this* afternoon – tomorrow afternoon? well that’s tomorrow….

  38. Firefly says:

    The kids today do not even read comics….

    …..and that’s why I admire them!

    :)

  39. Alan Coil says:

    Parents who don’t buy comics and read them to their children are depriving their children of a valuable piece of pop culture.

    I urge parents to try to remember their own childhoods when they watched the same movies over and over, when they played the same games over and over, and when they read the same books and comics over and over. The comics I had when I was a kid are all beat up from constant re-reading.

  40. AERose:

    “They’re complaining because they keep buying crap. Active clause: they keep buying crap.”

    People keep buying crap because they’re ‘trying’ to be loyal to the character(s), hoping that the stories and art will improve. But as you can see by these figures, many aren’t buying crap anymore.

    Nick,

    Yes it is a shame about both Terra and Vixen. While I can’t speak for Vixen, Amanda Connor is highly talented but the powers that be wasted her talent by putting her on a useless, unnecesary book.

    The version of Terra who was popular was the one by Wolfman and Perez but that character has been dead for 2 decades and even at the height of her popularity, wasn’t strong enough to carry her own book because she was created with a singularity of purpose. Once that purpose was complete, move on.

    But DC insisted on recreating her 2 more times after that, neither of which was successful because both were far away from the concept that made her popular to begin with so to create another one, AGAIN not even remotely close to the concept of what made her popular and believe THAT would accomplish what the preceeding 2 could not was ignorant & foolish.

    Because the EIC did not learn from his previous experiences. When he tried to recreate the Atom, Firestorm and the slew of others that failed miserably, here he goes again, repeating the same mistake with Terra and thus, wasted the immense talent of Amanda Connor.

    People can say well, Julie Schwartz did what this EIC did in the Silver Age, well, this EIC is NOT Julie Schwartz so to believe anyone can do what he did diminishes who JS was. Second, the Silver Age was a different time. During that time, there was a reader turn over rate. People during the Golden Age weren’t reading in the Silver Age so he recreated characters for an entirely new audience.

    There is no reader turn over rate anymore. Sad as it is, there is no new audience coming over the horizon. People reading today have been reading for 2 decades so when you take the characters that your audience knows and loves and replace them with unrecognizable versions, its like slapping your loyal customers across the face. It turns them off and away and that is what the current EIC does not comprehend. Because the current readers of today have little to no VALUE to the leaders subsizing their work.

    To be sucessful in any business, you have to recognize and value the market, know both your talent and your customers and the current leaders do not. They disregard their market base and don’t utilize their talent where the talent is best served. C’mon, this is a guy that took a powerhouse like George Perez and put him on a book like Brave and The Bold. JMS is now in the DC stable and where is he going? To Brave and The Bold.

    DC is led by a leader who not only doesn’t know the market, the readers or how best to maximize the appeal and abilities of his talent, he’s someone who doesn’t learn from his own previous experiences and keeps making the same mistakes over and over again.

    Hence, the reason why DC is in the sad situation it is in.

  41. Firefly: Why not get him to do more issues rather than employing the Euro flavor of the month to pay tribute to Sergio Leone?

    Jordi Bernet certainly is not a flavor of the month. If only that were true.

    Alan Coil: Firstly, comics for kids are only $2.50, not $4.

    Can you name a couple? All the comics I buy for my 7 year old son seem to be $3.99 and I wouldn’t mind saving some money.

    I see people buying comics for kids all the time, except it only happens in comics shops. More kids would read comics if comics were readily available outside the DM and if DM stores did a better job stocking the good titles available and maintaining locations that are family-friendly. The problem isn’t comics or children, it’s the way comics are distributed and where they are sold that is the inhibiting factor. Think about it this way, the potential audience of kids is only as large as the number of people who shop at DM retail locations (a nearly insignificant segment of the population to begin in).

  42. Marc-Oliver, you might save some wear and tear on your keyboard by pointing out those DC titles that DIDN’T have variants, instead of those that did…

    Oh, and the last several issues of The Boys have had a 50/50 cover split.

  43. Steven R. Stahl says:

    Mr. Hochkoepper, you seem to be making incorrect assumptions about the story content of Marvel titles. In the case of Bendis’s AVENGERS titles (DARK AVENGERS, NEW AVENGERS), for example, the creators try for cinematic effects in the artwork, but the stories consistently place superhero characters in crime fiction situations and settings, Powers are barely mentioned or shown. The “big action sequences” are nowhere to be seen.

    The handling of SUPERGIRL and LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES might demonstrate DC’s problems. Both series have been rebooted and revamped several times, but neither series has been successful. Repeated reboots and revamps don’t work in the context of a shared universe, and don’t make sense from a commercial standpoint, either. The only reason I see to keep Supergirl alive is that the character’s trademark and merchandising rights are worth more than the character itself.

    SRS

  44. AERose says:

    “People keep buying crap because they’re ‘trying’ to be loyal to the character(s), hoping that the stories and art will improve.”

    Right, that’s because they’re stupid. They could be reading something they actually enjoy, but instead they’re stuck in a rut of reading every piece of crap DC puts out. Ludicrous.

    “I don’t think Jim missed your point at all, it reads more like you are missing his. It definitely isn’t true that it’s “asinine to be emotionally invested in the producer” when said producer’s product is (for the most part) set in a shared continuity that requires a certain degree of intellectual and emotional investment to follow it across multiple titles. Same with Marvel: If you’re not emotionally invested in the ‘Dark Reign’ concept, you can pretty much stop buying Marvel comícs right now, since most of their books just won’t be entertaining to you.”

    Stop conflating the producer with the product. If you have an interest in the books DC produces, or have an interest in the shared continuity those books take place in, then it ends there. DC Comics is just the vehicle by which these books make it to market.

    It doesn’t love you, it doesn’t want your business more than anyone elses’, and it doesn’t care about your loyalty. Rage against the writers and editors, but the company itself is a passive entity.

  45. Heinz Hochkoepper says:

    Steven:
    Well, the idea was to sum up a general impression as succintly as possible. Of course that whole crime fiction aspect is obvious as well, as is the spy fiction aspect of books like Captain America or Secret Warriors. So a better description of Marvel’s product might be this: a line of books that offers more or less competent variations on the crime, espionage and action genres mixed with the superhero genre. My point was that there seems to be very little in there that is truly original, imaginative or challenging in any way. DC books, on the other hand, are much more unpredictable, individual and occasionally, quite intelligent and challenging. This greater creative freedom can lead to those ‘reboots’ you seem to dislike, as incoming creators are allowed to follow their individual vision for an established character. Of course, this is all just my general impression.

    AERose:
    I think you are the only one who is “conflating the producer with the product”. I can’t imagine any comics fan being loyal to a company regardless of the product. Obviously, what people are invested in are the characters and the accumulated stories featuring those characters, what they are criticizing are the creative decisions of the writers and editors. Why would anybody be invested in the non-creative parts of a publishing company? Who are those people you are calling asinine?

  46. AERose says:

    “Who are those people you are calling asinine?”

    In general, anyone who would drop an unrelated DC title because they didn’t like Final Crisis (for example). In specific? I wasn’t exactly taking down names.

  47. Heinz Hochkoepper says:

    Okay, if you put it like that, I agree with you.

  48. AERose says:

    Good, because I think my argument was getting steadily more convoluted the more replies I posted. A few more turns and I probably wouldn’t have been able to make heads or tails of it anymore. I think I probably could have saved some time by just posting “Man, comic book fans annoy the shit out of me sometimes.”

  49. Heinz Hochkoepper says:

    Heh, I know how that feels. Probably happens to everybody having online discussions. Reading back in your posts, your main point seemed to be: “read the books you like, ignore the books you don’t”, which is another idea I can definitely agree with. I just thought you went a bit overboard when you seemed to dismiss the very idea of brand loyalty. I guess I’m having my cake and eating it too: I definitely prefer the DC universe over the Marvel universe, mostly because I’m totally disinterested in the general direction and tone of the MU, but that doesn’t stop me from enjoying the odd Marvel book (Omega the Unknown was one of my favorite books last year, and I loved the last issue of X-Factor).

  50. Frank Rook says:

    “I guess this is it for Batgirl, for the next few years, as far as solo titles are concerned.”

    You just HAD to jinx it! Now she’s getting another monthly (more or less).

  51. Event based comics lead me to drop entire lines. I dropped all my Marvel titles after Civil War. I dropped most of of my DC after Infinite Crisis, jumped back in with 52. Jumped back out with Countdown.

    I read R.I.P. and Final Crisis. Didn’t care for either.

    So now i’m sitting here not giving a damn about either line. Truth be told, my number one problem with comics today is relaunches and reboots. I want something new. Everyone is so busy riffing on the past that there’s no roadmap for the future.

    Final Crisis is confusing because the original crisis attempted to streamline the DC Universe and the last 2 have complicated it to ridiculous proportions.

  52. Louis Lane says:

    >the December chart includes books which shipped on January 2, 2009… because Diamond evidently felt more comfortable with that date.

    UPS did not deliver anything on Dec 31 or Jan 1. That’s why comics came out on Jan 2. Diamond did not have a choice.

    LL

  53. AERose says:

    “Truth be told, my number one problem with comics today is relaunches and reboots.”

    Attributing a problem at DC and Marvel to the entire comic book industry? Just a tad myopic, aren’t we?

  54. AERose says:

    To paraphrase the Big Lebowski, well, isn’t it?

    OK, that was rude, but you’re revamping a character that hasn’t been involved in anything worthwhile in 25 years, in a market full of revamps of characters that haven’t been involved in anything worthwhile in 25 years.

    With nothing to recommend it aside from your, Mr. Gray, and [fill in the appropriate honorific here] Conner’s hard work to recommend it, did it even have a chance to not be background noise?

    I don’t think Marc was trying to comment on the quality of your series, but on DC’s publishing strategy which involves pumping out a steady stream of C-list character series that inevitably become, well, background noise.

  55. Joe, Supergirl: Cosmic Adventures in the 8th Grade is a $2.50 book, and I enjoyed issues 1-2 more than just about any other new DC book in the last year or so. My daughter drew a picture of Supergirl to mail to the editors. That Billy Batson book is pretty excellent as well.

  56. It’s official: comic fans are the worst people on the planet.

  57. Micah says:

    I’m sad at the Scalped numbers. I’ll keep buying the monthlies until they cancel it. It seems like the trade sales are enough to keep it going. I’m really jazzed for the storyline, and the art is great.

    I gotta believe that Jack of Fables reads better in the trade format, so I’m switching after this Bookburner storyline wraps. Fables definitely stays with the monthly format.

    With FC gone, and Batman/Detective and Superman/Action up in the air, DC has lost my attention, save for Green Lantern. And I was one of their newer readers who came on board with Identity Crisis. When can Geoff Johns start writing X-Men books?

  58. Joseph says:

    So Marc’s original comment re: Terra is gone as is Mr. Palmiotti’s post in response, both of which were valid, even if possibly the result of a misunderstanding of Marc’s usage of the term “background noise”.

    If you;re really trying to erase all evidence of this non-event you might want to also remove the post from AERose above.

    RJT’s can probably stay, as it remains valid.

  59. Huh.

    For what it’s worth, AERose has it right. I’d like to think it’s pretty obvious by now that I’m not commenting on the quality of books, unless otherwise noted.

    Jimmy, I’m pretty sure TERRA isn’t the only one of the 27 lower-tier books DC throws out there every month that the creators worked hard on.

    I wasn’t aware that this is a controversial topic.

  60. firefly

    If it helps you, tony…a personal friend of mine, is set to do more work on the title in the future .

  61. marc, when is calling a project “background noise” a good thing and not a comment on the book? really, how can you say that and believe anything else? By definition the term is dismissive on every level.

    firefly: I have business relationships. I am a freelance artist/writer that works currently for 5 companies. I do not own D.C. COMICS. never have. Check the credit pages.

    want to make sure tony is credited in the movie? Please write warner brothers. As far as I am concerned, Tony and John created the character.

    read my other post .

  62. The Beat says:

    Okay people. I am on deadline and do not have time for this shit.

    I am closing comments on this post UNTIL I have time to fix this.

    Firefly, you have been getting on my last nerve with your inaccurate speculations and mean spirited hit and run slams. I just don’t have time for it.

  63. The Beat says:

    I have turned comments back on. You kids are free to discuss this as long as you remain courteous and CIVIL.

    For the record, comics professionals do not get any “special” treatment here, but I really dislike and discourage the kind of put downs and attacks that are epidemic on other message boards. I have banned PROS who came here and posted abusive shit, and will not tolerate it from anyone.

    To be honest, I think the people reading The Beat are better than that.

    Jimmy, Justin and Amanda are professionals and can take their lumps BUT I do understand how the original comment could have been misconstrued. I think these numbers are “sobering” enough as is without adding extra grief.

    ALSO I am still sick and tired and on deadline and I am not going to take any shit from any one about how I banned this or that or the other thing. I removed a couple of Firefly’s comments because they were ludicrous and annoying to me. I run a pretty tolerant ship here, but I reserve the right to be pissed off.

    FINALLY, if there is one thing we should all be united in, it is the excellence of the work of Tony DeZuinga! Let us all praise him.

  64. Jimmy,

    First up, I don’t think I’ve suggested my comment was meant to be positive. It’s clearly not.

    Second, I didn’t call TERRA “background noise.” I called it “MORE background noise,” referring back to the rather more elaborate comment I made earlier on the SUPERMAN & BATMAN VS. VAMPIRES & WEREWOLVES, MAELSTROM, GOTHAM AFTER MIDNIGHT, TANGENT and RANN/THANAGAR numbers — all series out on the fringes of the DC Universe with pitiful sales well below 20K, which I don’t think is a coincidence, very much regardless of the quality of any of these books.

    So, with all due respect, I think you’re wrong, and I got my shit covered. I don’t understand how you can misconstrue what I say on TERRA as a comment on the book’s content in the context ot this column.

  65. Micah says:

    Jimmy, I’m reading Back to Brooklyn and it’s fantastic. Story is compelling and I love the art. How are the numbers? And might there be more in the future?

  66. Moose says:

    marc’s humour at these depressing figures, and the ever contentious comments always make this the best read of the month.

    for my part, i enjoyed terra, in a funny way. i love amanda connor’s work, and would read terra as an ongoing if she were drawing it, but i don’t really think the character has much of a future. i thought she was going to be pushed straight into teen titans on the back of the mini, but the new roster looks as poor as ever (big secret blacked-out cover for the march issue totally blown by the reveal of the may issue cover, showing those blacked out characters). can’t figure why these twice-monthly “background noise” series are left to fend for themselves so often, perhaps the only exception being black lightning, who’s an outsider and in the JLA, at least, until he isn’t anymore. terra has had a cameo in supergirl (another palpable hit series) and a mini of her own, but what next? vixen…what next? the c-listers just don’t hold the attention for long enough, even when you throw them all together in a team book (with ‘titans’ in the title somewhere).

    i’ve never really been a marvel fan, and i’m too old to invest my time in their universe now. i’ve been a long follower of DC, but DC has some great characters that i no longer care about because of the endless revamps and reboots.

    long ago, a reboot was something unexpected and fresh, like alan moore’s swamp thing. now it’s something that occurs every time the new creative team arrives, bringing a new origin, different motivation, a new base of operation, a colourfully one-dimensional new cast of supporting characters and a disposable new villain of the piece.

    not everything can be just padding betwen so-called event books, and yet that’s how DC’s current editorial makes me feel. however anti-climactic the ending, batman RIP has, by way of final crisis (a book that’s had no discernable effect on the DCU outside of its own pages and still has spin-offs that have months to run) killed off DC’s biggest gun. what logic in removing the batman titles? do we really need another azbats in the cowl? how long will i need to continue buying a batman free batman and detective, when both titles return, before brice wayne comes back and makes everything from the past couple of years a mere hiccup?

    DC without batman? i think i may be done with comics…

  67. thanks for post
    perfectly http://www.cicioyun.net

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  1. [...] Also: Weihnachten und Geburtstag auf einen Tag. Nur: genutzt hat es nichts. Denn das wirklich Erschreckende sind nicht die 12.500 Vorbestellungen für dieses Heft, sondern dass es nur knapp tausend Vorbestellungen mehr waren als zuletzt für die ganz normale Nummer 249 der Serie. Und dass das Jubelheft nur so viele Vorbestellungen aufholte, wie sie innerhalb des letzten Jahres verloren hat. (Die ganzen erschreckenden Zahlen und wie Hellblazer derzeit jährlich tiefer in die Verkaufszahlenhölle sinkt, kann man in Marc-Oliver Frischs monatlicher Kolumne auf The Beat verfolgen, zuletzt hier.) [...]

  2. [...] Also: Weihnachten und Geburtstag auf einen Tag. Nur: genutzt hat es nichts. Denn das wirklich Erschreckende sind nicht die 12.500 Vorbestellungen für dieses Heft, sondern dass es nur knapp tausend Vorbestellungen mehr waren als zuletzt für die ganz normale Nummer 249 der Serie. Und dass das Jubelheft nur so viele Vorbestellungen aufholte, wie sie innerhalb des letzten Jahres verloren hat. (Die ganzen erschreckenden Zahlen und wie Hellblazer derzeit jährlich tiefer in die Verkaufszahlenhölle sinkt, kann man in Marc-Oliver Frischs monatlicher Kolumne auf The Beat verfolgen, zuletzt hier.) [...]

  3. [...] [Publishing] DC Comics month-to-month sales Link: Marc-Oliver Frisch [...]

  4. [...] DC Month to Month Sales December 2008 [...]

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