KING CITY is a hit

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king city cover KING CITY is a hit
Brandon Graham’s KING CITY is something of a poster child for the fusion comics generation—begun as a “OEL manga” it was rescued from contract limbo and returned to lead the vanguard of Image’s newly invigorated and eclectic line. But it’s more than just a symbol—people actually seem to be buying it.

The other day we were checking some biblio info and saw that the new KING CITY  KING CITY is a hitcollection was around #3500 in Amazon books. Of course, that could mean only that it sold three copies…but anything under #10000 is still a respectable showing. As of today, it’s dropped a bit:

www.amazon.com 2012 4 9 KING CITY is a hit
but still doing well. However, even its #28 place at Image is notable: it’s the 2nd top selling book that isn’t a WALKING DEAD book from Image! It lags only CHEW, Volume 5. Here’s the #27-40 list from Amazon:

27. Chew Volume 5: Major League Chew TP

28. King City TP

29. Invincible Ultimate Collection Volume 7 HC

30. The Strange Talent of Luther Strode Volume 1 TP

31. Severed HC

32. Walking Dead Survivors Guide TP

33. Chew Omnivore Edition Volume 2 HC

34. The Walking Dead Omnibus Volume 2 HC (New Printing)

35. Skullkickers Volume 1: Treasure Trove HC

36. The Walking Dead: The Covers

37. Hack/Slash Omnibus Volume 4 TP

38. Liberty Meadows Sunday Collection

39. Chew Volume 1: Tasters Choice

40. Invincible: The Ultimate Collection, Vol. 1

For reference, The #40 Image book is at #29,721 overall on Amazon.

Like we said, Amazon rankings don’t mean hundreds of books sold—really only a handful, but this kind of sales velocity for KING CITY shows that it’s definitely a hit. It’s good to see Image developing a new generation of strong sellers. And as we keep mentioning, with graphic novel sales depressingly flat, new hits are definitely needed to get consumers excited about the category…outside THE WALKING DEAD of course.

Comments

  1. Chris Hero says:

    Graham is unbelievably, insanely talented. I’m happy but not surprised King City is finding traction. It’s one of those rare works that is both awesome and can be enjoyed by just about anyone.

    YAY!! Go King City!!

  2. Eric Stephenson has made a lot of smart moves at Image Comics. Snagging Brandon one of the most shrewd.

  3. Hooray! I bought one of those copies from Amazon, thanks to 11 o’clock comics podcast’s recommendation!

  4. I will either buy it from Amazon once I’ve completed my upcoming move … or I’ll get it in a comics store IF I CAN FREAKING FIND IT! It’s been out of stock at my LCS for weeks.

  5. Nick Jones says:

    I hadn’t heard of King City, but…

    “It’s one of those rare works that is both awesome and can be enjoyed by just about anyone. ”

    …is a pretty strong endorsement from Kassius Ohno. More importantly, there’s a giant floating ball of cats on the cover, so it must be good. I’ll definitely check it out when I get the opportunity. :D

  6. PeterCSM730 says:

    That’s impressive considering how poorly the series did as a periodical. Glad to hear it’s doing well! The story was a bit of nonsense but very fun and detailed nonsense!

  7. I’d think he’ll do rly well if he had a wider release in bookstores, cause every time i get into conversation with younger comic readers who are going through their “manga phase”, i suggest Brandon Graham as a transitional comic to ease them out of it and every time I see them again their telling about how he led them to a wider range of cartoonists and other books they love.

  8. Picked this up from Brandon at Emerald City Comicon. It’s fantastic.

  9. When I read somewhere (Brandon’s blog maybe?) that he wasn’t making very much money off the individual comic sales, I was perplexed to say the least. KING CITY is a great comic book.

    It would be nice for the collected edition to sell enough to make Brandon Graham some money. I like it when good alt comics can support their creators.

  10. Bought it in each of its incarnations-manga, monthly, and trade-and enjoyed reading it each time. Enjoyed Multiple Warheads too.

    I do wonder about what he made from the Image release, however. I understand his contract with Tokyopop gave them a lot of control/rights over the title and I would be interested in knowing what they got from the Image deal.

  11. As someone who’s sold books on Amazon – and not to burst anyone’s enthusiasm here – but this really means nothing. “Anything under #10000″ honestly means you’ve sold maybe a hundred or two hundred copies. I’ve bounced all the way up to the hundreds (I think I peaked at #150) and living off the profits was never even close to being a consideration.

  12. Joe Lawler says:

    “I do wonder about what he made from the Image release, however. I understand his contract with Tokyopop gave them a lot of control/rights over the title and I would be interested in knowing what they got from the Image deal.”

    Isn’t the Image standard deal that the creators keep all rights and control?

  13. Image, yes, but when Tokyopop signed on creators like Graham the contracts raised some controversy because of the amounts the publisher was retaining over the material. I understand King City was the product of one of these contracts and that Tokyopop is still in the mix somehow.

  14. http://www.bleedingcool.com/2012/04/05/brandon-graham-manga-in-the-microwave/

    “You said it was a bad contract with Tokyopop and I see that they’re still mentioned on the trade — the book’s listed as being copyrighted to them. After all this negotiation, how much of the property do they actually own?”

    BG: It’s co-owned, I think it’s about 60:40… whatever that means. They’re basically just involved in this book…and I’m bad with contracts, obviously. The main thing that caught me up with them is that there’s this stipulation in the contract that says about “print”, and that they’re allowed to put it on the Internet and call it “print”. If I had changed that one thing in the contract, then I could have just waited a year and all the rights would have come back to me.

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