The News Blog of Comics Culture
It is back to almost the old dcu sales…………Marvel took 38.61% of the Retail, or Unit Share category, a raw measure of how many titles comic book retailers ordered in February, with DC in second at 35.26%.
Marvel also led with 35.92% in Dollar Share, which measures how many gross dollars retailers spent on Direct Market orders that month. DC was again second with 29.47%.
The reboot as I always said was fed mostly by speculators and they are leaving. DC you should have just hired better writters and artist and not this throw back to the start of Image. DC you are going to have to return to the old dcu and just get new blood in your staff. Right now your staff is stuck in the 90′s and that will not hold out.
Five-week month again – the New 52 take a week off (unless Jim Lee’s running late), whereas Marvel get in more double-shipping than in a four-week.
Aquaman’s overtaken Batman and Robin now – good for him! And good for good comics, too!
You’re insane, arrowshaft. Cut all of Marvel’s releases to ope issue, and DC destroys Marvel. It’s the $3.99 price point and the double-shipping that’s keeping Marvel on top. DC’s publishing less titles, and less frequently. Anyone can game the system if they toss out as many books as possible. Quality over quantity is what’s keeping DC books on the top of the sales charts.
Ryan it is the numbers that count. The numbers are going back to the old dcu and you can give all the reasons why it does not mean anything but in the long run it is Marvel back to its number 1 position and dc back to its old spot of number 2.
Next month you will see dc falling down more and a bigger ripple in the top ten. Speculators and gimmicks can only go so far and the older fans walking away will keep the dcnu numbers falling.
Except, the top and middle bits are already stabilizing…
The numbers are not going back to the old DCU just yet.
DC puts out fewer titles now than they did pre-new 52.
Marvel is still slinging about the same number of individual issues. So they are winning on quantity based off the fact they have about 15+ more individual issues out each month. And they charge more for the same amount of content.
Marvel are basicall bending their fans over the table and having a go. Get ready for more of it with all the AvX crossovers.
Double-shipping isn’t a bad thing, necessarily – it’s not like they’re selling two or more identical copies to people – but that does seem to be where Marvel’s edge lies.
A quick glance at the top 100 shows that there are 35 DC comics, just one issue of each, and 59 Marvel, including five Venom, three Amazing Spider-Man and two each of fourteen other comics (plus Wolverine and the X-Men: Alpha and Omega in addition to the two normal issues in February).
“Ryan it is the numbers that count. The numbers are going back to the old dcu and you can give all the reasons why it does not mean anything…”
Yeah, who cares about reasons! All we can do is look at one arbitrary value and declare a winner based on that. Just like how Android has a bigger market share than the iPhone so it wins. Pointing out that Apple makes massively more money is just more of those silly reasons.
As I discuss here, while the rare five-week February did play a role, it probably didn’t account for all of the increase:
Arrowshaft posted the same thing over on Bleeding Cool. Practically word for word. It’s probably Tom Brevoort in disguise. :P
DC must do a Supermen event. True originality exudes cash from the blind sheep
John Jackson Miller can correct me if I am wrong but I am pretty sure DC shipped 82 (non reorders) in January to Marvel’s 80 when you go across the line.
The margin of books shipped by the two has been fairly even since the fall I believe.
Just imagine…You put a big-name writer and a talented artist on AQUAMAN and even issue #6 sells better than any Marvel title. This should prove that characters without movie or TV adaptations can sell if you give them a solid creative effort and promotion.
If DC is crashing I’d like to hear what Marvel is. Using the same number for Walking Dead as last month got me around 58500 for the top Marvel title for the month from bleeding cools top100 page (although with Walking Dead going up as usual it’s probably around 59K – 60K).
Has marvel ever had a month without a title over 60K?
Still, marvels 5th week wasn’t “that” big, I doubt it alone can account for all of their win.
Bound to be an interesting top300.
For me the bigger news is the rebound in overall sales, especially year-to-year. Whether this recession is really over or we’re getting a temporary (election year? hair of the dog?) respite, the overall numbers are good news for practically everyone in the Direct Market.
“Speculators and gimmicks can only go so far and the older fans walking away will keep the dcnu numbers falling.”
Sighs. Avengers vs X-Men is NOT a gimmick?
Marvel is pulling out all the stops in order to get a number one title again. Marvel is selling to the exact same overall fanbase as DC, and they’ve relied on speculators and gimmicks for the past 10 years.
When you look at the overall numbers, I can make these conclusions:
Marvel is succeeding because:
1. They publish more titles.
2. They have a higher price point.
3. They rely on annual events and gimmicks.
DC is succeeding because:
1. Everyone is still talking about the DCnU.
2. ALL of the DC books are selling waaaaay better than they were a year ago.
3. They’re forcing Marvel to re-evaluate a lot of their strategies.
Let’s face it, when was the last time you saw:
- Aquaman outselling Marvel?
- FOUR Batman titles outselling Marvel?
- TWO Superman titles outselling Marvel?
I don’t think we should discount the Five Wednesday phenomena for February, as that only happens once everyone 28 years.
but they dont actually have more titles….DC had more in January.
and both publishers have gimmicks and events and $4 books (DC is about to add more). And both publishers suffer from attrition and rely on the gimmicks and events to churn the numbers back up.
Marvel and DC are both trying to do the same thing: make money. The title of number one in titles shipped or revenue in doesnt matter to either of them next to profitability.
Why isn’t Amazing Spider-Man in the top ten? Dan Slott & his amazing artist friends having been knocking it out of the park for over a year now.
Best corporate mainstream superhero book on the shelves.
Yeah, I’m with M Kitchen, Marvel and DC both put out a TON of crap, but Marvel actually has a few EXCELLENT books at the moment. Amazing Spidey, Wolverine and the X-Men and Uncanny X-Force (minus the current arc, cause of the art) are perfect comics. It’s a shame they aren’t selling better.
@Googles: The number of titles isn’t as important as Marvel doubleshipping on 17 of their titles, which is counted in the marketshare part of things. They didn’t really take the market back as much as bought the market back.
Also, while DC is increasing a few books to $4, they are also adding content and such. Marvel will still have far more $4 books which will only have 20 pages. It’s not close to comparing them.
Goggles — yes, DC had 84 Top 300 entries in January to Marvel’s 80, though I count three reordered books rather than two.
And, yeah, Heidi, the extra week counts for something — adding about 11% in unit orders over four week months, during the last eight years. Since units were up nearly 20%, we seem to have improved beyond that — and I also believe that since January 2011 had so many items shift into February, that month was artificially inflated.
Really, it’ll be the first quarter numbers that provide the cleanest comparison. Unless the solar storm does something to mess things up…
MARVEL’s double shipping their better-selling titles vs. DC’s variant cover retailer ordering ‘incentives’— so which one is more responsible in puffing up the total “sales” number this month for the companies/Diamond/comics sites/fanboys of either stripe to crow about?
Curious mainly-non-mainstream comics reader wants to know.
I’m gonna be “that guy” then and throw in some pessimism:
From what I recall counting the marvel march ongoing solicitations, they were quite a bit lighter than the january ongoing solicits, something around 70-75 total, including doubleships and counting all-ages books, some of which might fall outside the top300.
At the same time, DC wont be getting any big salesbumps – over 50 titles hitting issue 7 that I doubt will be adding anything, while the only new launch is a Night Force mini.
And that will be coming after a 5-week month. I wouldn’t expect positive reading in the march statistics.
@Justice and Rule
I’m not questioning the content and/or value at all. No debate that DC’s $4 book gives more product but from a dollar standpoint they are adding more $4. That’s the only point I was driving at.
And yes the double shipping is buying back the market. Except Marvel was doing this before the DC reboot. Look at last summer’s charts and you will find Uncanny X-Force, Incredible Hulk, Amazing Spider-Man and other books already shipping twice a month. What’s the difference between shipping Uncanny X-Men twice or simply having two X-Men books? DC’s version of this putting Batman in more titles or guest starring him here and there.
Once DC has a hold on their base they too will ship the higher priced, more popular books 15-18 times a year.
It’s hard to declare Marvel and/or DC is or is not winning share and dollar scales with gimmicks and costly books when both publisher’s are basically doing flavors of the exact same thing.
One publisher paves the way and the other follows suit.
It should read Geoff Johns outsells Marvel titles! Who are we trying to fool?
Put Alan Moore on an Aqualad title and it will outsell Marvel titles!
Foe some reason my post didn’t appear…
Snyder is on fire at the moment! 3 top 10 trades – including #1. And the 2nd highest comic of the month! DC better prey they don’t lose him or they are stuffed!
Also great to see the TMNT in the top 10 trades too! Loving IDW’s take on them.
I think that Marvel’s top titles (such as Uncanny X-Men, Wolverine & the X-Men, Amazing Spidey) would sell roughly a quarter to a third better if they didn’t double ship, but it’s probably worth it in terms of overall sales, assuming they can maintain the quality (which they do on some titles better than others)
A lot of people are dropping a lot of DC books, eventually that is going to start to impact the top sellers as well as the mid range and bottom titles. It is unfortunate that the reboot had to alienate a number of long term fans.
[...] has released its sales rankings for February, and The Flash #6 comes in at #8 for units [...]
Buy The Beat a cup of coffee!
Events/Previews Editor: Jessica Lee
Technology Editor: Bruce Lidl
Entertainment Editor: Shannon O'Leary
Padraig O Mealoid
Return to top of page
Copyright © 2014 The Beat Log in