Marvel Month-to-Month Sales: April 2009

By Paul O’Brien

It’s Wolverine month at Marvel! To tie in with the film, we have a new ongoing Wolverine title, and a whole bunch of Wolverine variant covers. Elsewhere, the Dark Reign books continue, MARVEL ZOMBIES and DARK TOWER are back with new miniseries, and there’s the first issue of FANTASTIC FORCE, the abortive Fantastic Four spin-off.

As normal, Marvel had the largest share of the North American direct market, beating DC by 40% to 28% in both unit and dollar share.

Thanks as always to ICV2.com for permission to use these figures.

DC take the top two slots on this month’s chart, with DETECTIVE COMICS #853 and FLASH: REBIRTH #1. But we kick off the Wolverine-fest at number 3 with…

3.  WOLVERINE: WEAPON X
04/09  Wolverine: Weapon X #1 - 97,896

Yes, it’s a fourth ongoing monthly Wolverine title, to join WOLVERINE, WOLVERINE: ORIGINS and WOLVERINE: FIRST CLASS.

But it’s not quite that simple. Because WOLVERINE is about to become DARK WOLVERINE, a series about his son.

That might be a temporary thing for Dark Reign. However, it could also be a soft relaunch, of the sort that we’ve already seen with IRON MAN and HULK in recent years: Wolverine’s original title becomes a Daken book or gets cancelled, this takes its place, and there’s a few months of overlap in the middle.

The new book, by Jason Aaron and Ron Garney, launches just under the 100K range. That’s broadly comparable to the numbers that Mark Millar and Steve McNiven have been getting for their “Old Man Logan” story on the existing WOLVERINE series, but that’s an unusually popular storyline. By general standards, this is a good number for Wolverine.

On the other hand, let’s not get carried away. Marvel hurled variant covers at this book – there are five, including 1:20 variants by Olivier Coipel and Alan Davis, and a 1:100 sketch cover by Adam Kubert. Also, the second printing came out in the last week of April, so it ought to be included in these numbers. All this should be boosting the sales significantly, so it’ll be interesting to see where issue #2 lands up – it has only two covers, and neither is an incentive.

4.  DARK AVENGERS
01/09  Dark Avengers #1 - 139,239
02/09  Dark Avengers #2 - 102,277  (-26.5%)
03/09  Dark Avengers #3 - 101,978  ( -0.3%)
04/09  Dark Avengers #4 -  95,854  ( -6.0%)

A third printing of issue #1 came out in April, adding a further 6,078 sales. There’s also a second printing of issue #3, which adds 5,432. As usual, they’re included in the total above.

If you go by first month sales alone, the drop this month is minimal. Overall, the Dark Reign flagship book is levelling out very nicely.

This issue has a 1:15 variant cover by Stefano Caselli – but there was a similar incentive scheme for issue #3, and first month sales are only down by a few hundred.

5.  NEW AVENGERS
04/04  Avengers #81     -  54,987
04/05  New Avengers #5  - 162,412
04/06  New Avengers #18 - 121,550
04/07  New Avengers #29 - 125,378  ( +4.9%)
=====
04/08  New Avengers #40 - 117,201  (+13.7%)
05/08  New Avengers #41 - 109,185  ( -6.8%)
06/08  New Avengers #42 - 108,495  ( -0.6%)
07/08  New Avengers #43 - 108,751  ( +0.2%)
08/08  New Avengers #44 - 106,385  ( -2.2%)
09/08  New Avengers #45 - 103,326  ( -2.9%)
10/08  New Avengers #46 -  99,513  ( -3.7%)
11/08  ---
12/08  New Avengers #47 -  95,703  ( -3.8%)
12/08  New Avengers #48 -  95,688  ( -0.0%)
01/09  New Avengers #49 -  94,291  ( -1.5%)
02/09  New Avengers #50 - 106,831  (+13.3%)
03/09  New Avengers #51 -  95,340  (-10.8%)
04/09  New Avengers #52 -  93,975  ( -1.4%)
                           6 mnth  ( -5.6%)
                           1 year  (-19.8%)
                           2 year  (-25.0%)
                           3 year  (-22.7%)
                           4 year  (-42.1%)
                           5 year  (+70.9%)

Another Dark Reign tie-in. As usual, there’s a variant cover. Sales are slightly down, but still well within the normal range.

WOLVERINE
04/04  Wolverine #13 -  71,060
04/05  Wolverine #27 - 101,228
04/06  Wolverine #41 -  70,965
04/07  Wolverine #53 -  98,441  ( +1.4%)
=====
04/08  Wolverine #64 -  64,871  ( +0.0%)
05/08  Wolverine #65 -  62,451  ( -3.7%)
06/08  Wolverine #66 - 112,469  (+80.1%)
07/08  Wolverine #67 -  96,651  (-14.1%)
08/08  Wolverine #68 -  92,182  ( -4.6%)
09/08  ---
10/08  ---
11/08  Wolverine #69 -  88,910  ( -3.5%)
12/08  Wolverine #70 -  94,219  ( +6.0%)
01/09  ---
02/09  ---
03/09  Wolverine #71 -  91,229  ( -3.2%)
04/09  ---

Even though it’s his month, Wolverine’s main title didn’t ship in April, because the “Old Man Logan” storyline is running late. But issue #70 added another 5,002 sales thanks to a third printing with a new variant cover, and issue #71 picked up a further 5,183.

7.  HULK
04/04  Incredible Hulk #71  -  46,837
04/05  Incredible Hulk #80  -  48,404
04/06  Incredible Hulk #94  -  44,907
04/07  Incredible Hulk #105 -  53,256  (+11.4%)
=====
04/08  Hulk #3              - 100,167  ( -1.4%)
05/08  ---
06/08  Hulk #4              - 101,927  ( +1.8%)
07/08  ---
08/08  Hulk #5              - 102,105  ( +0.2%)
09/08  Hulk #6              - 117,807  (+15.4%)
10/08  Hulk #7              - 110,261  ( -6.4%)
11/08  Hulk #8              -  90,776  (-17.7%)
12/08  Hulk #9              -  87,786  ( -3.3%)
01/09  ---
02/09  Hulk #10             -  77,217  (-12.0%)
03/09  ---
04/09  Hulk #11             -  82,726  ( +7.1%)
                               6 mnth  (-25.0%)
                               1 year  (-17.4%)
                               2 year  (+55.3%)
                               3 year  (+84.2%)
                               4 year  (+70.9%)
                               5 year  (+76.6%)

Every issue of this series has variant covers, but some have more than others. Let’s take a look. Issue #3-5 each had two covers, plus a second printing. Issues #6-8 went straight for three covers right off the bat. Issue #9 had five (Art Adams, Frank Cho, and three by Ed McGuinness, one of which was a sketch variant). Issue #10 was back to three covers, one of which had a 1:15 incentive. And with issue #11, we’re back up to four covers – including a 1:15 Art Adams cover, and a 1:10 Wolverine Art Appreciation Month cover.

The sales increase this month is presumably thanks to the two incentive variants.

10. THOR
04/04  Thor #77  - 30,819
04/05  ---
04/06  ---
04/07  ---
=====
04/08  Thor #8   - 91,981  (  -5.7%)
05/08  Thor #9   - 87,101  (  -5.3%)
06/08  ---
07/08  Thor #10  - 83,784  (  -3.8%)
08/08  ---
09/08  ---
10/08  Thor #11  - 78,673  (  -6.1%)
11/08  ---
12/08  Thor #12  - 73,784  (  -6.2%)
01/09  ---
02/09  Thor #600 - 96,718  ( +31.1%)
03/09  ---
04/09  Thor #601 - 79,626  ( -17.7%)
                   6 mnth  (  +1.2%)
                   1 year  ( -13.4%)
                   2 year  (   --- )
                   3 year  (   --- )
                   4 year  (   --- )
                   5 year  (+158.4%)

Anniversary spikes don’t usually have a lasting effect, but THOR is still up a bit from previous levels. On the other hand, there’s a variant cover on issue #601 (unlike issue #12), so you’d expect it to be slightly higher. A second printing shipped at the end of May.

12.  UNCANNY X-MEN
04/04  Uncanny X-Men #442 -  86,975
04/05  Uncanny X-Men #458 -  85,299
04/06  Uncanny X-Men #472 -  79,157
04/07  Uncanny X-Men #485 -  81,764  ( -0.3%)
=====
04/08  Uncanny X-Men #497 -  93,369  ( +4.8%)
05/08  Uncanny X-Men #498 -  82,090  (-12.1%)
06/08  Uncanny X-Men #499 -  81,100  ( -1.2%)
07/08  Uncanny X-Men #500 - 160,876  (+98.4%)
08/08  Uncanny X-Men #501 -  85,398  (-46.9%)
09/08  Uncanny X-Men #502 -  82,883  ( -2.9%)
10/08  Uncanny X-Men #503 -  87,196  ( +5.2%)
11/08  Uncanny X-Men #504 -  77,773  (-10.8%)
12/08  Uncanny X-Men #505 -  82,271  ( +5.8%)
01/09  ---
02/09  Uncanny X-Men #506 -  71,684  (-12.9%)
03/09  Uncanny X-Men #507 -  77,957  ( +8.8%)
04/09  Uncanny X-Men #508 -  76,442  ( -1.9%)
04/09  Uncanny X-Men #509 -  69,185  ( -9.5%)
                             6 mnth  (-20.7%)
                             1 year  (-25.9%)
                             2 year  (-13.5%)
                             3 year  (-12.6%)
                             4 year  (-18.9%)
                             5 year  (-20.5%)

Two issues this month. Issue #508 has the Wolverine Art Appreciation cover, which is a 1:10 incentive. Issue #509 has no variants at all, which still happens from time to time on this book. The last time was issue #506, which suggests that the underlying trend, though downhill, is fairly slow.

13. X-MEN: LEGACY
04/04  New X-Men #155     - 100,088
04/05  X-Men #169         -  82,793
04/06  X-Men #185         -  78,815
04/07  X-Men #198         -  74,841 
=====
04/08  X-Men: Legacy #210 -  77,441  ( -5.8%)
05/08  X-Men: Legacy #211 -  79,818  ( +3.1%)
05/08  X-Men: Legacy #212 -  74,033  ( -7.2%)
06/08  X-Men: Legacy #213 -  71,893  ( -2.9%)
07/08  X-Men: Legacy #214 -  69,863  ( -2.8%)
08/08  X-Men: Legacy #215 -  68,047  ( -2.6%)
09/08  X-Men: Legacy #216 -  66,434  ( -2.4%)
10/08  X-Men: Legacy #217 -  65,888  ( -0.8%)
11/08  X-Men: Legacy #218 -  63,512  ( -3.6%)
12/08  X-Men: Legacy #219 -  60,587  ( -4.6%)
01/09  X-Men: Legacy #220 -  59,286  ( -2.1%)
02/09  X-Men: Legacy #221 -  56,517  ( -4.7%)
03/09  X-Men: Legacy #222 -  55,606  ( -1.6%)
04/09  X-Men: Legacy #223 -  71,935  (+29.4%)
                             6 mnth  ( +9.2%)
                             1 year  ( -7.1%)
                             2 year  ( -3.9%)
                             3 year  ( -8.7%)
                             4 year  (-13.1%)
                             5 year  (-28.1%)

That’s a surprisingly big climb. It’s unlikely to be driven by the story content, as this was the penultimate part of a five-issue arc. So presumably it’s the three covers – the variants being a Marvel Girl pin-up by Marko Djurdjevic and a 1:10 Wolverine Art Appreciation cover in the style of Andy Warhol. Even so, it’s an unexpectedly big increase.

15. MIGHTY AVENGERS
04/07  Mighty Avengers #2  - 124,209
=====
04/08  Mighty Avengers #12 -  97,239  (+18.2%)
05/08  Mighty Avengers #13 - 102,266  ( +5.2%)
05/08  Mighty Avengers #14 -  95,281  ( -6.8%)
06/08  Mighty Avengers #15 -  94,014  ( -1.3%)
07/08  Mighty Avengers #16 -  96,252  ( +2.4%)
08/08  Mighty Avengers #17 -  92,950  ( -3.4%)
09/08  Mighty Avengers #18 -  90,799  ( -2.3%)
10/08  Mighty Avengers #19 -  87,258  ( -3.9%)
11/08  ---
12/08  Mighty Avengers #20 -  86,085  ( -1.3%)
01/09  ---
02/09  Mighty Avengers #21 -  76,247  (-11.4%)
02/09  Mighty Avengers #22 -  72,865  ( -4.4%)
03/09  Mighty Avengers #23 -  71,333  ( -2.1%)
04/09  Mighty Avengers #24 -  68,231  ( -4.3%)
                              6 mnth  (-21.8%)
                              1 year  (-29.8%)
                              2 year  (-45.1%)

Another Dark Reign tie-in. Sales continue to drift downwards with the new direction. But you could make a case that DARK AVENGERS essentially replaced this book as the second Brian Bendis Avengers book, and that MIGHTY is sort of a new title – by which standards, it’s doing well.

16. ASTONISHING X-MEN
04/05  ---
04/06  Astonishing X-Men #14 - 119,545
04/07  ---
=====
04/08  ---
05/08  Giant-Size Ast. #1    - 105,508  ( -2.0%)
06/08  ---
07/08  Astonishing X-Men #25 - 121,974  (+15.6%)
08/08  Astonishing X-Men #26 -  94,244  (-22.7%)
09/08  ---
10/08  Astonishing X-Men #27 -  86,770  ( -7.9%)
11/08  ---
12/08  ---
01/09  Astonishing X-Men #28 -  72,610  (-16.3%)
02/09  ---
03/09  ---
04/09  Astonishing X-Men #29 -  67,774  ( -6.7%)
                                6 mnth  (-21.9%)
                                1 year  (  --- )
                                2 year  (  --- )
                                3 year  (-43.3%)
                                4 year  (  --- )

For once, ASTONISHING tails in behind both UNCANNY and LEGACY – though these numbers would usually have been enough to beat the latter title. Still, this book is losing readers at a heck of a rate. A six month drop of 22% isn’t brilliant at the best of times, but in this case the book has lost a fifth of its audience in only two issues.

It’s possible that part of this is a backlash against the notoriously overpriced ASTONISHING X-MEN: GHOST BOXES miniseries. But more likely, the book just doesn’t have the Big Event aura that it did when Joss Whedon was writing. The question, I suppose, is where ASTONISHING fits into the X-Men line now. It clearly isn’t a flagship title any more.

Perhaps it’s best seen as a sort of LEGENDS OF THE DARK KNIGHT book, where creators can do their own thing off to the side of regular continuity. By that standard, 68K isn’t too bad. But of course, it’s 68K and dropping fast.

17,19,24. AMAZING SPIDER-MAN
04/04  Amazing Spider-Man #506 -  83,152
04/05  Amazing Spider-Man #519 -  78,535
04/06  Amazing Spider-Man #531 -  86,884
04/07  ---
=====
04/08  Amazing Spider-Man #555 -  86,902  ( +7.2%)
04/08  Amazing Spider-Man #556 -  78,458  ( -9.7%)
04/08  Amazing Spider-Man #557 -  77,057  ( -1.8%)
05/08  Amazing Spider-Man #558 -  76,966  ( -0.1%)
05/08  Amazing Spider-Man #559 -  74,206  ( -3.6%)
05/08  Amazing Spider-Man #560 -  74,012  ( -0.3%)
06/08  Amazing Spider-Man #561 -  72,372  ( -2.2%)
06/08  Amazing Spider-Man #562 -  71,409  ( -1.3%)
06/08  Amazing Spider-Man #563 -  70,792  ( -0.9%)
07/08  Amazing Spider-Man #564 -  68,882  ( -2.7%)
07/08  Amazing Spider-Man #565 -  69,182  ( +0.4%)
07/08  Amazing Spider-Man #566 -  68,912  ( -0.4%)
08/08  Amazing Spider-Man #567 -  68,130  ( -1.1%)
08/08  Amazing Spider-Man #568 - 105,324  (+54.6%)
08/08  Amazing Spider-Man #569 -  86,432  (-17.9%)
09/08  Amazing Spider-Man #570 -  89,516  ( +3.6%)
09/08  Amazing Spider-Man #571 -  80,178  (-10.4%)
09/08  Amazing Spider-Man #572 -  80,220  ( +0.1%)
10/08  Amazing Spider-Man #573 -  82,550  ( +2.9%)
10/08  Amazing Spider-Man #574 -  69,069  (-16.3%)
10/08  Amazing Spider-Man #575 -  68,913  ( -0.2%)
11/08  Amazing Spider-Man #576 -  68,956  ( +0.1%)
11/08  Amazing Spider-Man #577 -  76,625  (+11.1%)
11/08  Amazing Spider-Man #578 -  66,564  (-13.1%)
12/08  Amazing Spider-Man #579 -  69,784  ( +4.8%)
12/08  Amazing Spider-Man #580 -  62,979  ( -9.8%)
12/08  Amazing Spider-Man #581 -  68,905  ( +9.4%)
01/09  Amazing Spider-Man #582 -  59,932  (-13.0%)
01/09  Amazing Spider-Man #583 - 521,831 (+770.7%)
01/09  Amazing Spider-Man #584 -  63,754  (-87.8%)
02/09  Amazing Spider-Man #585 -  60,286  ( -5.4%)
02/09  Amazing Spider-Man #586 -  59,521  ( -1.3%)
02/09  Amazing Spider-Man #587 -  60,118  ( +1.0%)
03/09  Amazing Spider-Man #588 -  61,334  ( +2.0%)
03/09  Amazing Spider-Man #589 -  58,832  ( -4.1%)
04/09  Amazing Spider-Man #590 -  66,415  (+12.9%)
04/09  Amazing Spider-Man #591 -  60,508  ( -8.9%)
04/09  Amazing Spider-Man #592 -  65,940  ( +9.0%)
                                  6 mnth  ( -4.3%)
                                  1 year  (-14.3%)
                                  2 year  (  --- )
                                  3 year  (-24.1%)
                                  4 year  (-16.0%)
                                  5 year  (-20.7%)

Issues #590 and #592 both have Wolverine Art Appreciation variants, with the usual 1:10 incentive. Issue #591 doesn’t. Interestingly enough, it actually posts a 3% increase from the last variant-free issue, #589. Admittedly, the solicitation did promise an unspecified big event, but it wasn’t a particularly hyped issue. Perhaps the book is finally hovering at a consistent level.

21. CAPTAIN AMERICA
04/04  Captain America #25 -  38,584
04/05  Captain America #5  -  46,010
04/06  Captain America #17 -  45,541
04/07  ---
=====
04/08  Captain America #37 -  80,635  ( -0.9%)
05/08  Captain America #38 -  79,350  ( -1.6%)
06/08  Captain America #39 -  79,387  ( +0.0%)
07/08  Captain America #40 -  79,317  ( -0.0%)
08/08  Captain America #41 -  85,035  ( +7.2%)
09/08  Captain America #42 -  75,574  (-11.1%)
10/08  Captain America #43 -  72,405  ( -4.2%)
11/08  Captain America #44 -  75,493  ( +4.3%)
12/08  Captain America #45 -  71,186  ( -5.7%)
01/09  Captain America #46 -  73,184  ( +2.8%)
02/09  Captain America #47 -  62,850  (-14.1%)
03/09  Captain America #48 -  62,108  ( -1.2%)
04/09  Captain America #49 -  63,874  ( +2.8%)
                              6 mnth  (-11.8%)
                              1 year  (-20.8%)
                              2 year  (  --- )
                              3 year  (+40.3%)
                              4 year  (+38.8%)
                              5 year  (+65.5%)

A slight increase from last month. The solicitation promised “the most important issue of CAPTAIN AMERICA since issue #25″, so they might have been hoping for a bit more. Even so, the current storyline is selling far above the book’s traditional level.

23,25. ULTIMATE WOLVERINE VS HULK
12/05  Wolverine/Hulk #1 of 6 - 135,614
01/06  ---
02/06  Wolverine/Hulk #2 of 6 - 124,653  ( -8.1%)
03/06  ---
04/06  ---
05/06  ---
06/06  ---
07/06  ---
08/06  ---
09/06  ---
10/06  ---
11/06  ---
12/06  ---
01/07  ---
02/07  ---
04/07  ---
04/07  ---
05/07  ---
06/07  ---
07/07  ---
08/07  ---
09/07  ---
10/07  ---
11/07  ---
12/07  ---
01/08  ---
02/08  ---
03/08  ---
04/08  ---
05/08  ---
06/08  ---
07/08  ---
08/08  ---
09/08  ---
10/08  ---
11/08  ---
12/08  ---
01/09  ---
02/09  ---
03/09  Wolverine/Hulk #3 of 6 -  68,390  (-45.1%)
04/09  Wolverine/Hulk #4 of 6 -  60,818  (-11.1%)
04/09  Wolverine/Hulk #5 of 6 -  59,403  ( -2.3%)

You wait three years for ULTIMATE WOLVERINE VS HULK and three of them come along at once. Issue 1 adds another 5,183 in re-orders, and issue #2 picks up another 5,197. They’re added above. Sales on the continued series seem fairly steady this month, but it’s plainly not got the momentum it had in 2006.

27. X-FORCE
04/08  X-Force #3  - 85,750  ( -3.3%)
05/08  X-Force #4  - 84,792  ( -1.1%)
06/08  ---
07/08  X-Force #5  - 76,978  ( -9.2%)
08/08  X-Force #6  - 69,010  (-10.4%)
09/08  X-Force #7  - 64,911  ( -5.9%)
10/08  X-Force #8  - 59,745  ( -8.0%)
11/08  X-Force #9  - 57,241  ( -4.2%)
12/08  X-Force #10 - 58,801  ( +2.7%)
01/09  X-Force #11 - 51,817  (-11.9%)
02/09  X-Force #12 - 51,449  ( -0.7%)
03/09  X-Force #13 - 51,797  ( +0.7%)
04/09  X-Force #14 - 57,308  (+10.6%)
                     6 mnth  ( -4.1%)
                     1 year  (-33.2%)

This is part of the “Messiah War” crossover with CABLE, a lower-selling book. It’s also got a variant cover for the first time since issue #10. Between them, that accounts for the sales rise.

29. INVINCIBLE IRON MAN
04/04  Iron Man #79            -  29,138
04/05  Iron Man #3             -  51,390
04/06  Iron Man #7             -  49,404
04/07  Iron Man #16            -  59,470
04/08  Iron Man #28            -  35,754 
=====
05/08  Invincible Iron Man #1  - 120,657
06/08  Invincible Iron Man #2  -  76,001  (-37.0%)
07/08  Invincible Iron Man #3  -  66,430  (-12.6%)
08/08  Invincible Iron Man #4  -  58,154  (-12.5%)
09/08  Invincible Iron Man #5  -  60,444  ( +3.9%)
10/08  Invincible Iron Man #6  -  53,332  (-11.8%)
11/08  Invincible Iron Man #7  -  49,356  ( -7.5%)
12/08  Invincible Iron Man #8  -  56,708  (+14.9%)
01/09  Invincible Iron Man #9  -  52,364  ( -7.7%)
02/09  Invincible Iron Man #10 -  56,381  ( +7.7%)
03/09  Invincible Iron Man #11 -  52,165  ( -7.5%)
04/09  Invincible Iron Man #12 -  51,774  ( -0.7%)
                                  6 mnth  ( -2.9%)
                                  1 year  (+44.8%)
                                  2 year  (-12.9%)
                                  3 year  ( +1.6%)
                                  4 year  ( +0.7%)
                                  5 year  (+77.7%)

Continuing a Dark Reign crossover arc, which seems to be holding up nicely. A second printing of issue #11 shipped in mid-April but doesn’t seem to have made the charts.

30. DARK REIGN: THE CABAL
04/09  Cabal - 50,221

This is an anthology with short stories about the five members of Norman Osborn’s Cabal. A decent number for that sort of spin-off.

31. SECRET WARRIORS
02/09  Secret Warriors #1 - 62,764
03/09  Secret Warriors #2 - 48,086  (-23.4%)
04/09  Secret Warriors #3 - 50,126  ( +4.2%)

Another Dark Reign tie-in arc. Sales are slightly up for issue #3, but that’s probably due to the Wolverine Art Appreciation variant. A second printing of issue #3 shipped at the start of April, but doesn’t make the top 300.

32. KICK-ASS  [Icon]
04/08  Kick-Ass #2 - 64,706  (-21.9%)
05/08  ---
06/08  Kick-Ass #3 - 65,427  ( +1.1%)
07/08  ---
08/08  Kick-Ass #4 - 60,703  ( -7.2%)
09/08  ---
10/08  ---
11/08  ---
12/08  Kick-Ass #5 - 52,142  (-14.3%)
01/09  ---
02/09  ---
03/09  ---
04/09  Kick-Ass #6 - 50,037  ( -4.0%)
                     6 mnth  (  --- )
                     1 year  (-22.7%)

A creator-owned series that sells like a regular Marvel Universe title. Mark Millar and John Romita Jr should be delighted with these numbers, really.

33. THUNDERBOLTS
04/04  Thunderbolts #78    - 21,806
04/05  New Thunderbolts #7 - 28,722
04/06  Thunderbolts #101   - 24,170
04/07  Thunderbolts #113   - 65,092
=====
04/08  ---
05/08  Thunderbolts #120   - 38,330  (  -4.6%)
06/08  Thunderbolts #121   - 37,693  (  -1.7%)
07/08  Thunderbolts #122   - 47,170  ( +25.1%)
08/08  Thunderbolts #123   - 45,403  (  -3.7%)
09/08  Thunderbolts #124   - 43,429  (  -4.3%)
10/08  Thunderbolts #125   - 41,358  (  -4.8%)
11/08  Thunderbolts #126   - 34,640  ( -16.2%)
12/08  Thunderbolts #127   - 36,378  (  +5.0%)
01/09  Thunderbolts #128   - 45,745  ( +25.7%)
02/09  Thunderbolts #129   - 45,401  (  -0.7%)
03/09  Thunderbolts #130   - 52,264  ( +15.1%)
04/09  Thunderbolts #131   - 49,155  (  -5.9%)
                             6 mnth  (   --- )
                             1 year  ( -55.2%)
                             2 year  ( -24.5%)
                             3 year  (+103.4%)
                             4 year  ( +71.1%)
                             5 year  (+125.4%)

It’s another Dark Reign tie-in, but it’s also the second half of a two-month crossover with DEADPOOL. There’s also a 1:15 variant cover, but that’s standard for this book.

Issue #130 picks up another 6,454 in sales, thanks in part to a second printing which came out at the end of the month. So in terms of first-month sales, it’s a climber.

34. DEADPOOL
09/08  Deadpool #1 - 75,058
09/08  Deadpool #2 - 65,400  (-12.9%)
10/08  Deadpool #3 - 61,833  ( -5.5%)
11/08  Deadpool #4 - 49,577  (-19.8%)
12/08  Deadpool #5 - 46,856  ( -5.5%)
01/09  Deadpool #6 - 46,549  ( -0.7%)
02/09  Deadpool #7 - 44,082  ( -5.3%)
03/09  Deadpool #8 - 53,109  (+20.5%)
04/09  Deadpool #9 - 48,483  ( -8.7%)
                     6 mnth  (-21.6%)

The other half of the crossover, and also seeing some noticeable benefit. Issue #8 also gets a second printing, and adds another 5,135 sales.

35,41. AVENGERS/INVADERS
05/08  Avngrs/Invaders #1 of 12 - 108,136
06/08  Avngrs/Invaders #2 of 12 -  83,012 (-23.2%)
07/08  Avngrs/Invaders #3 of 12 -  75,161 ( -9.5%)
08/08  Avngrs/Invaders #4 of 12 -  69,010 ( -8.2%)
09/08  ---
10/08  Avngrs/Invaders #5 of 12 -  63,757 ( -7.6%)
11/08  Avngrs/Invaders #6 of 12 -  56,224 (-11.8%)
12/08  Avngrs/Invaders #7 of 12 -  52,193 ( -7.2%)
01/09  ---
02/09  Avngrs/Invaders #8 of 12 -  48,319 ( -7.4%)
03/09  ---
04/09  Avngrs/Invaders #9 of 12 -  48,032 ( -0.6%)
04/09  Avngrs/Invaders #10 o/12 -  43,997 ( -8.4%)
                                   6 mnth (-31.0%)

Tailing off faster than you’d expect at this point in the miniseries.

36. WAR OF KINGS
03/09  War of Kings #1 of 6 - 58,709
04/09  War of Kings #2 of 6 - 47,652  (-18.8%)

That’s very respectable, bearing in mind that none of the books participating in the crossover sell this well.

One of the lead-in books, X-MEN: KINGBREAKER #4, charts at number 250 with a further 6,146 copies. That brings its total to 31,816, rectifying what previously looked like an inexplicable downward lurch. Chances are this was a Diamond glitch, and some sales slipped into the next month.

37. AVENGERS: THE INITIATIVE
04/07  Initiative #1 - 127,798
=====
04/08  Initiative #11 - 52,877  ( -2.8%)
04/08  Initiative #12 - 52,343  ( -1.0%)
05/08  Initiative #13 - 56,818  ( +8.5%)
06/08  Initiative #14 - 62,236  ( +9.5%)
07/08  Initiative #15 - 63,634  ( +2.2%)
08/08  Initiative #16 - 60,381  ( -5.1%)
09/08  Initiative #17 - 59,037  ( -2.2%)
10/08  Initiative #18 - 61,159  ( +3.6%)
11/08  ---
12/08  Initiative #19 - 52,558  (-14.1%)
12/08  Initiative #20 - 51,230  ( -2.5%)
01/09  Initiative #21 - 47,734  ( -6.8%)
02/09  Initiative #22 - 46,932  ( -1.7%)
03/09  ---
04/09  Initiative #23 - 45,146  ( -3.8%)
                        6 mnth  (-26.2%)
                        1 year  (-14.6%)
                        2 year  (-64.7%)

Dark Reign again, but sales continue to drift downwards.

38. DAREDEVIL
04/04  Daredevil #59  - 54,398
04/05  Daredevil #72  - 48,803
04/06  Daredevil #84  - 47,123
04/07  Daredevil #96  - 46,198 
=====
04/08  ---
05/08  Daredevil #107 - 40,418  ( -2.7%)
06/08  Daredevil #108 - 39,557  ( -2.1%)
07/08  Daredevil #109 - 39,258  ( -0.8%)
08/08  Daredevil #110 - 43,362  (+10.5%)
09/08  Daredevil #111 - 46,305  ( +6.8%)
10/08  Daredevil #112 - 46,202  ( -0.2%)
11/08  Daredevil #113 - 41,200  (-10.8%)
12/08  Daredevil #114 - 44,351  ( +7.6%)
01/09  Daredevil #115 - 40,214  ( -9.3%)
02/09  ---
03/09  Daredevil #116 - 41,261  ( +2.6%)
03/09  Daredevil #117 - 41,046  ( -0.5%)
04/09  Daredevil #118 - 44,982  ( +9.6%)
                        6 mnth  ( -2.6%)
                        1 year  (  --- )
                        2 year  ( -2.6%)
                        3 year  ( -4.5%)
                        4 year  ( -7.8%)
                        5 year  (-17.3%)

Once again, a Wolverine Art Appreciation variant is probably behind the sales increase.

39. WOLVERINE: ORIGINS
04/06  Origins #1  - 150,283
04/07  Origins #13 -  70,963
=====
04/08  Origins #24 -  49,299  ( -0.7%)
05/08  Origins #25 -  52,907  ( +5.9%)
06/08  Origins #26 -  48,059  ( -9.2%)
07/08  Origins #27 -  47,540  ( -1.1%)
08/08  ---
09/08  Origins #28 -  49,950  ( +5.1%)
10/08  Origins #29 -  58,841  (+17.8%)
11/08  Origins #30 -  50,359  (-14.4%)
12/08  Origins #31 -  45,043  (-10.6%)
01/09  Origins #32 -  44,697  ( -0.8%)
02/09  Origins #33 -  44,935  ( +0.5%)
03/09  Origins #34 -  45,579  ( +1.4%)
04/09  Origins #35 -  44,976  ( -1.3%)
                      6 mnth  (-23.6%)
                      1 year  ( -8.8%)
                      2 year  (-36.6%)
                      3 year  (-70.1%)

Another Dark Reign tie-in arc. ORIGINS has been incredibly stable of late.

44. MARVEL ZOMBIES
10/08  Marvel Zombies 3 #1 of 4 - 67,999
11/08  Marvel Zombies 3 #2 of 4 - 47,253  (-30.5%)
12/08  Marvel Zombies 3 #3 of 4 - 41,837  (-11.5%)
01/09  Marvel Zombies 3 #4 of 4 - 38,805  ( -7.2%)
02/09  ---
03/09  ---
04/09  Marvel Zombies 4 #1 of 4 - 42,891  (+10.5%)
                                  6 mnth  (-36.9%)

Time for another sequel already? Well, okay then. Diminishing returns are clearly in evidence here, though. The issue has a 1:20 variant cover by Arthur Suydam.

46. DARK REIGN: HAWKEYE
04/09  Dark Reign: Hawkeye #1 of 5 - 41,056

That’s Bullseye wearing Hawkeye’s costume, if you’re not folowing Dark Reign. And it’s a very good number indeed for a Bullseye miniseries.

48. CABLE
04/08  Cable #2  - 59,877  (-12.0%)
05/08  Cable #3  - 54,760  ( -8.5%)
06/08  Cable #4  - 49,996  ( -8.7%)
07/08  Cable #5  - 46,429  ( -7.1%)
08/08  Cable #6  - 45,050  ( -3.0%)
09/08  ---
10/08  Cable #7  - 43,358  ( -3.8%)
11/08  Cable #8  - 37,315  (-13.9%)
12/08  Cable #9  - 34,527  ( -7.5%)
01/09  Cable #10 - 33,319  ( -3.5%)
02/09  Cable #11 - 31,817  ( -4.5%)
03/09  Cable #12 - 32,407  ( +1.9%)
04/09  Cable #13 - 40,540  (+25.1%)
                   6 mnth  ( -6.5%)
                   1 year  (-32.3%)

The other half of the “Messiah War” crossover tails in 17,000 copies behind X-FORCE. But CABLE, very much the lower-selling partner in this affair, certainly gets a huge boost from its participation. Two covers on this one, with a second printing to come in May.

50. DARK TOWER
04/07  Gunslinger Born #3 of 7 - 149,168
=====
04/08  Long Road Home #2 of 5  - 106,023  (-16.4%)
05/08  Long Road Home #3 of 5  -  87,631  (-17.3%)
06/08  Long Road Home #4 of 5  -  79,270  ( -9.5%)
07/08  Long Road Home #5 of 5  -  74,981  ( -5.4%)
08/08  ---
09/08  Treachery #1 of 6       -  82,541  (+10.1%)
10/08  Treachery #2 of 6       -  65,732  (-20.4%)
11/08  Treachery #3 of 6       -  58,279  (-11.3%)
12/08  Treachery #4 of 6       -  53,735  ( -7.8%)
01/09  ---
02/09  --
03/09  ---
04/09  Sorcerer #1             -  39,210  (-27.0%)
                                  6 mnth  (-40.3%)
                                  1 year  (-63.0%)
                                  2 year  (-73.7%)

This is a one-shot, which might explain the unusually low sales. But it’s by regular creators Robin Furth and Richard Isanove, so the number has to be a bit disappointing.

52. NEW AVENGERS: REUNION
03/09  Reunion #1 of 4 - 46,847
04/09  Reunion #2 of 4 - 38,935  (-16.9%)

Since issue #1 had a variant cover, this is a surprisingly small drop. Issue #1 also had a second printing in April, but once again it doesn’t show up on the top 300.

53. THE STAND: AMERICAN NIGHTMARES
09/08  Captain Trips #1 of 5 - 82,671
10/08  Captain Trips #2 of 5 - 64,443  (-22.0%)
11/08  Captain Trips #3 of 5 - 55,076  (-14.5%)
12/08  Captain Trips #4 of 5 - 49,211  (-10.6%)
01/09  Captain Trips #5 of 5 - 46,702  ( -5.1%)
02/09  ---
03/09  Nightmares #1 of 5    - 47,473  ( +1.7%)
04/09  Nightmares #2 of 5    - 38,909  (-18.0%)
                               6 mnth  (-39.6%)

Another Stephen King adaptation which is shedding readers at an incredible speed. Of course, the normal rules don’t quite apply to these books, since in theory they should have a wider bookstore audience than most Marvel titles.

There are two variants on this book, with heavy incentives. But issue #1 had three.

56. DEADPOOL: SUICIDE KINGS
04/09  Suicide Kings #1 of 5 - 38,420

Marvel evidently think they’re onto a winner with Deadpool – they’re giving him a second monthly title without even waiting for this miniseries to end. And to be fair, the recent relaunch of his solo series has done remarkably well so far. I’m not convinced that he can support so many spin-off books, but you never know.

57. PUNISHER
04/07  War Journal #6  - 53,498
=====
04/08  War Journal #18 - 29,565  (  -5.3%)
05/08  War Journal #19 - 29,906  (  +1.2%)
06/08  War Journal #20 - 27,288  (  -8.8%)
07/08  War Journal #21 - 26,299  (  -3.6%)
08/08  War Journal #22 - 25,555  (  -2.8%)
09/08  War Journal #23 - 27,384  (  +7.2%)
10/08  War Journal #24 - 31,785  ( +16.1%)
11/08  War Journal #25 - 29,982  (  -5.7%)
12/08  War Journal #26 - 22,423  ( -25.2%)
01/09  Punisher #1     - 49,222  (+119.5%)
02/09  Punisher #2     - 40,928  ( -16.9%)
03/09  Punisher #3     - 37,570  (  -8.2%)
04/09  Punisher #4     - 36,995  (  -1.5%)
                         6 mnth  ( +16.4%)
                         1 year  ( +25.1%)
                         2 year  ( -30.8%)

More Dark Reign. Sales remain comfortably ahead of the book’s previous incarnation. As usual, there’s a variant cover.

58. CAPTAIN AMERICA COMICS
04/09  70th Anniversary Special - 36,717

One of a number of 70th Anniversary books featuring characters from Marvel’s earliest output. Obviously, Captain America’s one of the big names from that period. Some of the lesser known books may be a tougher sell.

63. WAR OF KINGS: ASCENSION
04/09  Ascension #1 of 4 - 34,540

This is a tie-in to the WAR OF KINGS crossover, which sounds like it’s basically a Darkhawk miniseries. A respectable number by the standards of Marvel’s cosmic boks.

64. X-MEN ORIGINS: WOLVERINE
04/09  Wolverine - 34,359

Another recap of Wolverine’s origin, to tie in with the movie.

65. WAR MACHINE
12/08  War Machine #1 - 54,396
01/09  War Machine #2 - 39,835  (-26.8%)
02/09  War Machine #3 - 33,818  (-15.1%)
03/09  War Machine #4 - 32,693  ( -3.3%)
04/09  War Machine #5 - 34,254  ( +4.8%)

Another Dark Reign tie-in. The sales boost is probably thanks to the Wolverine variant.

67. INCREDIBLE HERCULES
04/08  Hercules #116 - 44,575  ( -9.7%)
05/08  Hercules #117 - 57,264  (+28.5%)
06/08  Hercules #118 - 52,975  ( -7.5%)
07/08  Hercules #119 - 52,598  ( -0.7%)
08/08  Hercules #120 - 51,100  ( -2.8%)
09/08  Hercules #121 - 47,363  ( -7.3%)
10/08  Hercules #122 - 42,876  ( -9.5%)
11/08  Hercules #123 - 35,780  (-16.6%)
12/08  Hercules #124 - 36,855  ( +3.0%)
01/09  Hercules #125 - 31,888  (-13.5%)
02/09  Hercules #126 - 31,000  ( -2.8%)
03/09  Hercules #127 - 31,890  ( +2.9%)
04/09  Hercules #128 - 33,739  ( +5.8%)
                       6 mnth  (-21.3%)
                       1 year  (-24.3%)

Wolverine again.

70. BLACK PANTHER
04/05  Black Panther #3  - 44,925
04/06  Black Panther #15 - 28,361
04/07  ---
=====
04/08  ---
05/08  Black Panther #36 - 20,841  ( -2.3%)
06/08  Black Panther #37 - 19,989  ( -4.1%)
07/08  Black Panther #38 - 19,459  ( -2.7%)
07/08  Black Panther #39 - 37,546  (+92.9%)
08/08  Black Panther #40 - 33,583  (-10.6%)
09/08  Black Panther #41 - 33,620  ( +0.1%)
10/08  ---
11/08  ---
12/08  ---
01/09  ---
02/09  Black Panther #1  - 52,991  (+57.6%)
03/09  Black Panther #2  - 33,755  (-36.3%)
04/09  Black Panther #3  - 33,356  ( -1.2%)
                           6 mnth  (  --- )
                           1 year  (  --- )
                           2 year  (  --- )
                           3 year  (+17.6%)
                           4 year  (-25.7%)

Not bad at all. Issue #2 had a variant, issue #3 didn’t, so you could make a case that this is a de facto sales increase.

76. WOLVERINE NOIR
04/09  Wolverine Noir #1 of 4 - 32,112

Another noir version of a Marvel Universe hero – see also DAREDEVIL NOIR further down the listings. I suspect these are selling mainly to completist fans of the original character rather than opening up the Marvel audience to new genres, but you never know.

77. X-FACTOR
04/06  X-Factor #6  - 45,220
04/07  X-Factor #18 - 37,851
=====
04/08  X-Factor #30 - 51,447  ( -6.2%)
05/08  X-Factor #31 - 48,231  ( -6.3%)
06/08  X-Factor #32 - 45,104  ( -6.5%)
07/08  X-Factor #33 - 53,088  (+17.7%)
08/08  X-Factor #34 - 50,416  ( -5.0%)
09/08  X-Factor #35 - 44,481  (-11.8%)
10/08  X-Factor #36 - 38,552  (-13.3%)
11/08  X-Factor #37 - 35,754  ( -7.3%)
12/08  X-Factor #38 - 34,425  ( -3.7%)
01/09  X-Factor #39 - 32,796  ( -4.7%)
02/09  X-Factor #40 - 31,943  ( -2.6%)
03/09  X-Factor #41 - 31,888  ( -0.2%)
04/09  X-Factor #42 - 32,000  ( +0.4%)
                      6 mnth  (-17.0%)
                      1 year  (-37.8%)
                      2 year  (-15.5%)
                      3 year  (-29.2%)

No gimmicks here, and no other obvious reason for the slight uptick. Perhaps the book has found a sustainable level.

79. DARK REIGN: FANTASTIC FOUR
03/09  Fantastic Four #1 of 5 - 48,061
04/09  Fantastic Four #2 of 5 - 31,497  (-34.5%)

Issue #1 had a variant cover, but that’s still a very steep drop.

80. EXILES
04/04  Exiles #45     - 37,878
04/05  Exiles #62     - 33,965
04/06  Exiles #79     - 34,119
04/07  Exiles #93     - 30,697
=====
04/08  New Exiles #4  - 29,231  ( -4.1%)
04/08  New Exiles #5  - 28,505  ( -2.5%)
05/08  New Exiles #6  - 27,533  ( -3.4%)
06/08  New Exiles #7  - 25,742  ( -6.5%)
07/08  New Exiles #8  - 24,436  ( -5.1%)
08/08  New Exiles #9  - 22,986  ( -5.9%)
08/08  New Exiles #10 - 23,048  ( +0.3%)
09/08  New Exiles #11 - 22,630  ( -1.8%)
10/08  New Exiles #12 - 21,682  ( -4.2%)
10/08  New Exiles #13 - 21,058  ( -2.9%)
11/08  New Exiles #14 - 20,493  ( -2.7%)
12/08  New Exiles #15 - 19,498  ( -4.9%)
12/08  New Exiles #16 - 19,227  ( -1.4%)
01/09  New Exiles #17 - 18,381  ( -4.4%)
02/09  New Exiles #18 - 17,925  ( -2.5%)
03/09  ---
04/09  Exiles #1      - 31,136  (+73.7%)
                        6 mnth  (+47.9%)
                        1 year  ( +6.5%)
                        2 year  ( +1.4%)
                        3 year  ( -8.7%)
                        4 year  ( -8.3%)
                        5 year  (-17.8%)

Another year, another EXILES relaunch. By way of comparison, NEW EXILES #1 shifted an estimated 43,853 copies in January 2008, and got relaunched after only eighteen issues. So this is not a very promising start.

82. DARK REIGN: ELEKTRA
03/09  Elektra #1 of 5 - 36,385
04/09  Elektra #2 of 5 - 29,892  (-17.8%)

Issue #1 had a variant cover, so in real terms the second issue drop is fairly modest.

I have little doubt that the Dark Reign branding is delivering a significant sales boost to miniseries like this, compared with how they’d do as just plain ELEKTRA. It’s perhaps worth bearing in mind that Dark Reign is simply a label applied to any story that happens to acknowledge the Norman Osborn plot. They’re not really crossovers so much as an example of inter-title Marvel Universe continuity.

83. AGENTS OF ATLAS
02/09  Agents of Atlas #1 - 34,449
03/09  Agents of Atlas #2 - 26,783  (-22.3%)
04/09  Agents of Atlas #3 - 29,748  (+11.1%)

Hmm, interesting. This continues the opening Dark Reign storyline, but unusually, sales on issue #3 go up. Now, there’s a 1:10 Wolverine variant on this issue. But issue #2 had a 1:20 Ed McGuinness variant. So perhaps the Wolverine theme was a lot more popular (they ARE an unusually memorable range of variants), or perhaps the book has actually achieved a rare third-issue bounce. We’ll have to wait and see where it goes from here.

A second printing of issue #2 shipped in April, but didn’t make the top 300.

85. MS MARVEL
04/06  Ms Marvel #2  - 46,204
04/07  Ms Marvel #14 - 42,877
=====
04/08  Ms Marvel #26 - 42,277  ( +3.1%)
05/08  Ms Marvel #27 - 41,131  ( -2.7%)
06/08  Ms Marvel #28 - 42,194  ( +2.6%)
07/08  Ms Marvel #29 - 41,231  ( -2.3%)
08/08  ---
09/08  Ms Marvel #30 - 40,041  ( -2.9%)
09/08  Ms Marvel #31 - 32,145  (-19.7%)
10/08  Ms Marvel #32 - 25,892  (-19.5%)
11/08  Ms Marvel #33 - 23,980  ( -7.4%)
12/08  Ms Marvel #34 - 29,770  (+24.1%)
01/09  Ms Marvel #35 - 26,824  (-10.0%)
02/09  Ms Marvel #36 - 25,864  ( -3.6%)
03/09  Ms Marvel #37 - 25,053  ( -3.1%)
04/09  Ms Marvel #38 - 27,535  (+10.0%)
                       6 mnth  ( +6.4%)
                       1 year  (-34.9%)
                       2 year  (-35.8%)
                       3 year  (-40.4%)

Wolverine variant. It’s also part of a Dark Reign tie-in arc which originally had the dreaded “Classified” solicitation – to avoid giving away Ms Marvel’s replacement by Moonstone in DARK AVENGERS. That might have boosted sales a little.

86. SKAAR, SON OF HULK
06/08  Skaar, Son of Hulk #1  - 91,279
07/08  Skaar, Son of Hulk #2  - 56,984  (-37.6%)
08/08  Skaar, Son of Hulk #3  - 50,841  (-10.8%)
09/08  ---
10/08  Skaar, Son of Hulk #4  - 44,310  (-12.8%)
11/08  Skaar, Son of Hulk #5  - 34,779  (-21.5%)
12/08  Skaar, Son of Hulk #6  - 34,593  ( -0.5%)
01/09  Skaar, Son of Hulk #7  - 31,096  (-10.1%)
02/09  Skaar, Son of Hulk #8  - 28,771  ( -7.5%)
03/09  Skaar, Son of Hulk #9  - 27,137  ( -5.7%)
04/09  Skaar, Son of Hulk #10 - 27,317  ( +0.7%)
                                6 mnth  (-28.4%)

No variants, no gimmicks, this is just the end of a regular 4-part storyline. The book may have legitimately levelled out – but we’ve seen before that random upticks occasionally crop up in an ongoing decline, so don’t jump to conclusions just yet.

88. GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY
05/08  Guardians o/Galaxy #1  - 36,293
06/08  Guardians o/Galaxy #2  - 32,967  ( -9.2%)
07/08  Guardians o/Galaxy #3  - 33,986  ( +3.1%)
08/08  Guardians o/Galaxy #4  - 40,285  (+18.5%)
09/08  Guardians o/Galaxy #5  - 42,104  ( +4.5%)
10/08  Guardians o/Galaxy #6  - 36,546  (-13.2%)
11/08  Guardians o/Galaxy #7  - 30,516  (-16.5%)
12/08  Guardians o/Galaxy #8  - 31,564  ( +3.4%)
01/09  Guardians o/Galaxy #9  - 28,502  ( -9.7%)
02/09  Guardians o/Galaxy #10 - 27,648  ( -3.0%)
03/09  Guardians o/Galaxy #11 - 27,415  ( -0.8%)
03/09  Guardians o/Galaxy #12 - 26,764  ( -2.4%)
04/09  Guardians o/Galaxy #13 - 27,107  ( +1.3%)
                                6 mnth  (-25.8%)

The first WAR OF KINGS crossover issue, with a very modest sales boost.

90. BETA RAY BILL
04/09  Green of Eden - 26,246

Actually, the full title is SECRET INVASION: AFTERMATH – BETA RAY BILL: GREEN OF EDEN, or some such four-tier unwieldiness. It’s basically a lead-in to a Beta Ray Bill mini later in the year.

91. NOVA
04/07  Nova #1  - 42,917
=====
04/08  Nova #12 - 28,185  ( +0.1%)
05/08  Nova #13 - 28,144  ( -0.1%)
06/08  Nova #14 - 28,892  ( +2.7%)
07/08  Nova #15 - 28,592  ( -1.0%)
08/08  Nova #16 - 38,338  (+34.1%)
09/08  Nova #17 - 37,015  ( -3.5%)
10/08  Nova #18 - 38,417  ( +3.8%)
11/08  Nova #19 - 28,306  (-26.3%)
12/08  Nova #20 - 29,405  ( +3.9%)
01/09  Nova #21 - 25,647  (-12.8%)
02/09  Nova #22 - 25,065  ( -2.3%)
03/09  Nova #23 - 26,413  ( +5.4%)
04/09  Nova #24 - 26,240  ( -0.7%)
                  6 mnth  (-31.7%)
                  1 year  ( -6.9%)
                  2 year  (-38.9%)

The second part of a WAR OF KINGS crossover arc, and there’s another modest gain.

93. SUB-MARINER COMICS
04/09  70th Anniversary Special - 25,957

As you’d expect, there’s not as much interest here as there was in Captain America.

94. HALO: UPRISING
08/07  Uprising #1 of 4 - 71,812
09/07  ---
10/07  ---
11/07  Uprising #2 of 4 - 50,165  (-30.1%)
12/07  ---
01/08  ---
02/08  ---
03/08  ---
04/08  ---
05/08  ---
06/08  ---
07/08  ---
08/08  Uprising #3 of 4 - 34,267  (-31.7%)
09/08  ---
10/08  ---
11/08  ---
12/08  ---
01/09  ---
02/09  ---
03/09  ---
04/09  Uprising #4 of 4 - 25,812  (-24.7%)

Hell freezes over as HALO: UPRISING actually finishes. The book was originally supposed to coincide with the release of Halo 3 in September 2007, but as you can see, things went terribly wrong somewhere along the line. According to Wikipedia, the book wasn’t particularly well received by Halo fans, so it’s entirely possible that sales would have dropped off anyway. But combine that with eight-month delays between issues, and they’re hardly likely to come back for more.

95. DAREDEVIL NOIR
04/09  Daredevil Noir #1 of 4 - 24,673

Another noir book. They aren’t huge sellers, but Marvel are clearly in love with this idea.

98. INCOGNITO [Icon]
12/08  Incognito #1 - 27,958
01/09  ---
02/09  Incognito #2 - 22,962  (-17.9%)
03/09  ---
04/09  Incognito #3 - 24,280  ( +5.7%)

Well, this is very good news. Issue #1 had a second printing; its first month sales were 19,283. So INCOGNITO has actually climbed for the second month running. That’s rare, and has to be credited to good word of mouth.

99. WOLVERINE: ANNIVERSARY
04/09  Anniversary - 23,726

This month’s random Wolverine one-shot.

102. ALL-NEW SAVAGE SHE-HULK
04/09  She-Hulk #1 of 4 - 23,220

Not to be confused with any other savage She-Hulks of your acquaintance. This is a miniseries about Thundra’s daughter – although for added confusion, the regular She-Hulk is in it too. After this, the series is going to become a back-up strip in the revived INCREDIBLE HULK title.

104. GHOST RIDER
04/07  Ghost Rider #10 - 43,986
=====
04/08  Ghost Rider #22 - 25,866  ( -2.5%)
05/08  Ghost Rider #23 - 25,099  ( -3.0%)
06/08  Ghost Rider #24 - 24,494  ( -2.4%)
07/08  Ghost Rider #25 - 24,546  ( +0.2%)
08/08  Ghost Rider #26 - 27,026  (+10.1%)
09/08  Ghost Rider #27 - 23,402  (-13.4%)
10/08  Ghost Rider #28 - 26,993  (+15.3%)
11/08  Ghost Rider #29 - 24,205  (-10.3%)
12/08  Ghost Rider #30 - 25,508  ( +5.4%)
01/09  Ghost Rider #31 - 22,421  (-12.1%)
02/09  Ghost Rider #32 - 21,351  ( -4.8%)
03/09  Ghost Rider #33 - 21,347  ( -0.0%)
04/09  Ghost Rider #34 - 23,130  ( +8.4%)
                         6 mnth  (-14.3%)
                         1 year  (-10.6%)
                         2 year  (-47.4%)

Axed with issue #35, but there’s a miniseries to follow. The sales boost is due to a Wolverine variant.

106. MOON KNIGHT
04/06  Moon Knight #1 - 103,670
04/07  Moon Knight #9  - 69,196
=====
04/08  Moon Knight #17 - 27,808  ( -5.9%)
05/08  Moon Knight #18 - 26,626  ( -4.3%)
06/08  Moon Knight #19 - 25,820  ( -3.0%)
07/08  Moon Knight #20 - 28,773  (+11.4%)
08/08  Moon Knight #21 - 30,900  ( +7.4%)
09/08  Moon Knight #22 - 26,380  (-14.6%)
10/08  Moon Knight #23 - 25,216  ( -4.4%)
11/08  Moon Knight #24 - 23,947  ( -5.0%)
12/08  Moon Knight #25 - 23,283  ( -2.8%)
01/09  Moon Knight #26 - 21,796  ( -6.4%)
02/09  Moon Knight #27 - 21,413  ( -1.8%)
03/09  Moon Knight #28 - 20,866  ( -2.6%)
04/09  Moon Knight #29 - 22,689  ( +8.7%)
                         6 mnth  (-10.0%)
                         1 year  (-18.4%)
                         2 year  (-67.2%)
                         3 year  (-78.1%)

The book hasn’t been solicited past issue #30, which would normally imply that it’s been silenlty cancelled. But the August solicitations include a recap book, MOON KNIGHT SAGA, which would suggest that some sort of relaunch is in the offing.

108. IMMORTAL IRON FIST
04/07  Immortal Iron Fist #4  - 37,159
=====
04/08  Immortal Iron Fist #14 - 30,881  ( -3.6%)
05/08  Immortal Iron Fist #15 - 30,334  ( -1.8%)
06/08  Immortal Iron Fist #16 - 29,822  ( -1.7%)
07/08  Immortal Iron Fist #17 - 32,839  (+10.1%)
08/08  Immortal Iron Fist #18 - 27,430  (-16.5%)
09/08  ---
10/08  Immortal Iron Fist #19 - 25,861  ( -5.7%)
11/08  ---
12/08  Immortal Iron Fist #20 - 24,966  ( -3.5%)
12/08  Immortal Iron Fist #21 - 24,134  ( -3.3%)
01/09  ---
02/09  Immortal Iron Fist #22 - 23,259  ( -3.6%)
03/09  Immortal Iron Fist #23 - 22,691  ( -2.4%)
03/09  Immortal Iron Fist #24 - 22,326  ( -1.6%)
04/09  Immortal Iron Fist #25 - 22,309  ( -0.0%)
                                6 mnth  (-13.7%)
                                1 year  (-27.8%)
                                2 year  (-40.0%)

Ending with issue #27, to be followed by a miniseries focussing on the supporting cast. Again, this sounds like a relaunch of some sort is coming.

109. SKRULL KILL KREW
04/09  Skrull Kill Krew #1 of 5 - 22,234

111. FANTASTIC FORCE
04/09  Fantastic Force #1 of 4 - 21,865

Yes, well, they can’t all be winners. SKRULL KILL KREW is a revival of the 1990s curio, trailed by a Secret Invasion tie-in story in AVENGERS: THE INITIATIVE. It was never really likely to set the charts alight.

FANTASTIC FORCE, on the other hand, is a spin-off from Mark Millar and Bryan Hitch’s underperforming run on FANTASTIC FOUR. It was originally solicited as an ongoing title, before being cut to five issues, and then to four.

Now, to be fair, the Fantastic Four have long struggled to support spin-off titles. As an FF mini, this number wouldn’t be too out of line. But for an ongoing Marvel Universe title, it would have been a really dreadful start. It’s no surprise that Marvel have pulled the plug so quickly.

112. PUNISHER: FRANK CASTLE  [Max]
04/04  Punisher #5  - 34,234
04/05  Punisher #19 - 38,753
04/06  Punisher #32 - 34,076
04/07  Punisher #46 - 33,427
=====
04/08  Punisher #56     - 30,796  ( -1.5%)
05/08  Punisher #57     - 30,528  ( -0.9%)
06/08  Punisher #58     - 29,802  ( -2.4%)
07/08  Punisher #59     - 30,064  ( +0.9%)
08/08  Punisher #60     - 30,683  ( +2.1%)
08/08  Punisher #61     - 28,373  ( -7.5%)
09/08  Punisher #62     - 26,906  ( -5.2%)
10/08  Punisher #63     - 25,933  ( -3.6%)
11/08  Punisher #64     - 24,660  ( -4.9%)
12/08  Punisher #65     - 23,881  ( -3.2%)
01/09  Frank Castle #66 - 22,806  ( -4.5%)
02/09  Frank Castle #67 - 22,267  ( -2.4%)
03/09  Frank Castle #68 - 22,255  ( -0.0%)
04/09  Frank Castle #69 - 21,843  ( -1.9%)
                          6 mnth  (-15.8%)
                          1 year  (-29.1%)
                          2 year  (-34.7%)
                          3 year  (-35.9%)
                          4 year  (-43.6%)
                          5 year  (-36.2%)

This book seems to have found its level again, after the inevitable drop-off when Garth Ennis left. There’s a slight ongoing decline, but on the whole sales are very solid.

114. DARK TOWER: GUIDE TO GILEAD
04/09  Guide to Gilead - 21,173

Another HANDBOOK-style spin-off.

117. CAPTAIN BRITAIN & MI-13
05/08  Cpt. Britain & MI-13 #1  - 43,281
06/08  Cpt. Britain & MI-13 #2  - 37,986  (-12.2%)
07/08  Cpt. Britain & MI-13 #3  - 39,100  ( +2.9%)
08/08  Cpt. Britain & MI-13 #4  - 36,826  ( -5.8%)
09/08  Cpt. Britain & MI-13 #5  - 32,999  (-10.4%)
10/08  Cpt. Britain & MI-13 #6  - 28,033  (-15.0%)
11/08  Cpt. Britain & MI-13 #7  - 22,189  (-20.8%)
12/08  Cpt. Britain & MI-13 #8  - 21,236  ( -4.3%)
01/09  Cpt. Britain & MI-13 #9  - 18,483  (-13.0%)
02/09  Cpt. Britain & MI-13 #10 - 20,627  (+11.6%)
03/09  Cpt. Britain & MI-13 #11 - 17,757  (-13.9%)
04/09  Cpt. Britain & MI-13 #12 - 19,992  (+12.6%)
                                  6 mnth  (-28.7%)

Cancelled with issue #15. Plainly, the positive word of mouth never translated into sales. The boost this month is probably thanks to a Wolverine variant.

118. TIMESTORM 2009/2099
04/09  Timestorm #1 of 4 - 19,973

From the look of this, people just weren’t particularly crying out for a revival of the 2099 imprint.

119. RUNAWAYS
04/04  Runaways #14 - 19,363
04/05  Runaways #3  - 29,264
04/06  Runaways #15 - 24,046
04/07  Runaways #25 - 56,250
=====
04/08  ---
05/08  ---
06/08  Runaways #30 - 31,353  ( -5.6%)
07/08  ---
08/08  Runaways #1  - 33,252  ( +6.1%)
09/08  Runaways #2  - 27,958  (-15.9%)
10/08  Runaways #3  - 25,757  ( -7.9%)
11/08  Runaways #4  - 23,496  ( -8.8%)
12/08  Runaways #5  - 21,918  ( -6.7%)
01/09  Runaways #6  - 20,459  ( -6.7%)
02/09  Runaways #7  - 19,684  ( -3.8%)
03/09  Runaways #8  - 19,000  ( -3.5%)
04/09  Runaways #9  - 19,851  ( +4.5%)
                      6 mnth  (-22.9%)
                      1 year  (  --- )
                      2 year  (-64.7%)
                      3 year  (-17.4%)
                      4 year  (-32.2%)
                      5 year  ( +2.5%)

Wolverine variant. Obviously, the book is selling below several titles which have been cancelled or at least scheduled for a revamp – CAPTAIN BRITAIN, MOON KNIGHT, IRON FIST, GHOST RIDER. On the other hand, RUNAWAYS is said to do unusually well in digests, so across the various formats, it might be doing better than this chart suggests.

122. DESTROYER  [Max]
04/09  Destroyer #1 of 5 - 19,395

Robert Kirkman and Cory Walker revive a Golden Age superhero. This book was originally supposed to come out in September 2008, but obviously it’s drifted a bit. By Max standards, it’s a very good debut.

126. RAMPAGING WOLVERINE
04/09  Rampaging Wolverine #1 - 18,678

A black-and-white Wolverine anthology.

129. MARVELS: EYE OF THE CAMERA
12/08  Marvels #1 of 6 - 37,976
12/08  Marvels #2 of 6 - 27,256  (-28.2%)
01/09  Marvels #3 of 6 - 25,087  ( -8.0%)
02/09  Marvels #4 of 6 - 20,909  (-16.7%)
03/09  ---
04/09  Marvels #5 of 6 - 18,125  (-13.3%)

Drifting off the radar.

130. CAPTAIN AMERICA: THEATER OF WAR
04/09  Brother in Arms - 18,114

Another Captain America flashback story.

134. X-MEN: TIMES AND LIFE OF LUCAS BISHOP
02/09  Bishop #1 of 3 - 22,275
03/09  Bishop #2 of 3 - 18,653  (-16.3%)
04/09  Bishop #3 of 3 - 17,068  ( -8.5%)

A spin-off from CABLE with a revised version of Bishop’s origin story. Not a great deal of interest in this.

137. WONDERFUL WIZARD OF OZ
12/08  Wizard of Oz #1 of 8 - 25,116
01/09  Wizard of Oz #2 of 8 - 17,608  (-29.9%)
02/09  Wizard of Oz #3 of 8 - 15,668  (-11.0%)
03/09  Wizard of Oz #4 of 8 - 16,159  ( +3.1%)
04/09  Wizard of Oz #5 of 8 - 16,110  ( -0.3%)

One of Marvel’s best-selling novel adaptations, presumably due to the combination of a well-known (and interesting) artist, and some actual promotion in house ads.

139. ASTONISHING TALES
02/09  Astonishing Tales #1 - 27,030
03/09  Astonishing Tales #2 - 17,758  (-34.3%)
04/09  Astonishing Tales #3 - 15,862  (-10.7%)

Fading from view rapidly. However, that this is a reprint of material originally commissioned for Marvel’s website, so any money it makes in print may be simply a bonus.

142. SQUADRON SUPREME
07/08  Squadron Supreme #1  - 35,583
08/08  Squadron Supreme #2  - 28,052  (-21.2%)
09/08  Squadron Supreme #3  - 27,131  ( -3.3%)
10/08  Squadron Supreme #4  - 22,430  (-17.3%)
11/08  Squadron Supreme #5  - 19,822  (-11.6%)
12/08  Squadron Supreme #6  - 18,948  ( -4.5%)
01/09  Squadron Supreme #7  - 17,691  ( -6.6%)
02/09  Squadron Supreme #8  - 16,566  ( -6.4%)
03/09  Squadron Supreme #9  - 16,080  ( -2.9%)
04/09  Squadron Supreme #10 - 15,569  ( -3.2%)
                              6 mnth  (-30.6%)

Axed with issue #12.

143.  ANITA BLAKE, VAMPIRE HUNTER
04/07  Guilty Pls. #6 of 12    - 30,759
=====
04/08  Guilty Pls. #10 of 12   - 21,462  (-18.5%)
05/08  Guilty Pls. #11 of 12   - 20,627  ( -3.9%)
06/08  Guilty Pls. #12 of 12   - 19,866  ( -3.7%)
07/08  ---
08/08  ---
09/08  ---
10/08  Laughing Corpse #1 of 5 - 22,493  (+13.2%)
11/08  Laughing Corpse #2 of 5 - 17,187  (-23.6%)
12/08  Laughing Corpse #3 of 5 - 15,665  ( -8.9%)
01/09  Laughing Corpse #4 of 5 - 14,422  ( -7.9%)
02/09  Laughing Corpse #5 of 5 - 14,095  ( -2.3%)
03/09  ---
04/09  Necromancer #1 of 5     - 15,308  ( +8.6%)
                                 6 mnth  (-31.9%)
                                 1 year  (-28.7%)
                                 2 year  (-50.2%)

Another case of diminishing returns. Ignoring the first-issue bumps, the ongoing decline is fairly steady.

152.  WOLVERINE: WEAPON X FILES
04/09  Weapon X Files - 13,844

More Wolverine, another Handbook.

154. WOLVERINE: FIRST CLASS
04/08  First Class #2  - 25,610  (-28.3%)
05/08  First Class #3  - 22,430  (-12.4%)
06/08  First Class #4  - 20,199  ( -9.9%)
07/08  First Class #5  - 18,788  ( -7.0%)
08/08  First Class #6  - 19,443  ( +3.5%)
09/08  First Class #7  - 16,168  (-16.8%)
10/08  First Class #8  - 14,936  ( -7.6%)
11/08  First Class #9  - 13,857  ( -7.2%)
12/08  First Class #10 - 13,441  ( -3.0%)
01/09  First Class #11 - 12,845  ( -4.4%)
02/09  First Class #12 - 12,403  ( -3.4%)
03/09  First Class #13 - 12,430  ( -0.0%)
04/09  First Class #14 - 13,695  (+10.2%)
                         6 mnth  ( -8.3%)
                         1 year  (-46.5%)

And more Wolverine. The boost is thanks to, you guessed it, a Wolverine Art Appreciation variant – Chris Eliopoulos doing Charles Schultz.

At number 163, it’s yet another batch of the dreaded FALLEN SON: DEATH OF CAPTAIN AMERICA – IRON MAN, which Marvel continues to dump on the market at regular intervals. There’s 12,063 of them this month. Given Marvel’s normal caution about overprinting, you have to wonder why on earth Marvel printed so many of these things.

165,174. DR DOOM & THE MASTERS OF EVIL
01/09  Dr Doom/Masters #1 of 4 - 28,299
02/09  Dr Doom/Masters #2 of 4 - 12,946  (-54.3%)
03/09  ---
04/09  Dr Doom/Masters #3 of 4 - 11,704  ( -9.6%)
04/09  Dr Doom/Masters #4 of 4 - 10,236  (-12.5%)

A miniseries that fell down the gap between the regular Marvel Universe and the all-ages titles.

169. ENDERS GAME: BATTLE SCHOOL
10/08  Game #1 of 5 - 25,424
11/08  Game #2 of 5 - 16,771  (-34.0%)
12/08  ---
01/09  ---
02/09  Game #3 of 5 - 14,022  (-16.4%)
03/09  Game #4 of 5 - 12,082  (-13.8%)
04/09  Game #5 of 5 - 11,191  ( -7.4%)

Sci-fi adaptations. Sister title ENDERS SHADOW: BATTLE SCHOOL is only a few hundred sales behind.

172. X-MEN: FIRST CLASS
04/07  First Class #8 of 8 - 23,420
=====
04/08  First Class #11     - 14,896  ( -0.0%)
05/08  First Class #12     - 14,566  ( -2.2%)
06/08  First Class #13     - 14,157  ( -2.8%)
07/08  First Class #14     - 13,870  ( -2.0%)
08/08  First Class #15     - 13,249  ( -4.5%)
09/08  First Class #16     - 12,842  ( -3.1%)
10/08  Giant-Size Special  - 13,263  ( +3.3%)
11/08  ---
12/08  ---
01/09  ---
02/09  Finals #1 of 4      - 15,736  (+18.6%)
03/09  Finals #2 of 4      - 11,533  (-26.7%)
04/09  Finals #3 of 4      - 10,870  ( -5.7%)
                             6 mnth  (-18.0%)
                             1 year  (-27.0%)
                             2 year  (-53.6%)

Still drifting down. An UNCANNY X-MEN: FIRST CLASS miniseries is set to follow.

173. ENDERS SHADOW: BATTLE SCHOOL
12/08  Shadow #1 of 5 - 15,151
01/09  Shadow #2 of 5 - 12,736  (-15.9%)
02/09  Shadow #3 of 5 - 10,851  (-14.8%)
03/09  ---
04/09  Shadow #4 of 5 - 10,288  ( -5.2%)

178,218. MARVEL ASSISTANT-SIZE SPECTACULAR
04/09  MASS #1 of 2 - 9,915
04/09  MASS #2 of 2 - 7,806  (-21.3%)

It’s an anthology title about very obscure characters, and it also reuses material originally commissioned for the website. But still, that’s not a great number.

At number 201, it’s X-FORCE/CABLE: MESSIAH WAR – PROLOGUE, with another 8,561 sales. That brings the total to 61,338.

207. UNIVERSAL WAR ONE: REVELATIONS  [Soleil]
04/09  Revelations #1 of 3 - 8,252

The Soleil books are high-price reprints, so the economics are very different from Marvel’s own material.

214. AMAZING SPIDER-MAN FAMILY
08/08  Spider-Man Family #1 - 13,549
09/08  ---
10/08  Spider-Man Family #2 - 10,560  (-22.1%)
11/08  ---
12/08  Spider-Man Family #3 -  7,711  (-27.0%)
01/09  ---
02/09  Spider-Man Family #4 -  7,289  ( -5.5%)
03/09  ---
04/09  Spider-Man Family #5 -  8,051  (+10.5%)
                              6 mnth  (-23.8%)

The boost is likely due to the introduction of Spider-Girl as a regular feature, following the recent cancellation of her solo title. Most of her readers, though, seem to have simply vanished.

216. DEAD OF NIGHT  [Max]
01/09  Werewolf by Night #1 of 4 - 8,966
02/09  Werewolf by Night #2 of 4 - 7,599  (-15.2%)
03/09  Werewolf by Night #3 of 4 - 8,057  ( +6.0%)
04/09  Werewolf by Night #4 of 4 - 7,953  ( -1.3%)

Fairly standard Max numbers.

223. PRIDE & PREJUDICE
04/09  Pride & Prejudice #1 of 5 - 7,530

At the high end for a classic novel adaptation, perhaps proving the power of a good cover.

230. MARVEL APES
04/09  Amazing Spider-Monkey #1 - 6,971

Significantly overestimating the mileage in the joke, I think.

Number 238 is the NEW MUTANTS SAGA recap book, selling 6,722 bundles of 25 (in other words, 168,050 actual copies). These are basically promotional giveaways for retailers to use, and it’s debatable whether they really belong on the chart.

267. OFFICIAL INDEX TO THE MARVEL UNIVERSE
01/09  Index #1 - 9,852
02/09  Index #2 - 7,278  (-26.1%)
03/09  Index #3 - 6,331  (-13.0%)
04/09  Index #4 - 5,517  (-12.9%)

As I’ve said in previous months, it’s a niche product.

And from here on, it’s a cluster of all-ages titles, plus one Soleil reprint…

279. MARVEL ADVENTURES SPIDER-MAN  [All ages]
04/05  M.A. Spider-Man #2  - 10,305
04/06  M.A. Spider-Man #14 -  5,970
04/07  M.A. Spider-Man #26 -  6,478 
=====
04/08  M.A. Spider-Man #38 -  5,833  ( -0.7%)
05/08  M.A. Spider-Man #39 -  5,816  ( -0.3%)
06/08  M.A. Spider-Man #40 -  5,954  ( +2.4%)
07/08  M.A. Spider-Man #41 -  5,859  ( -1.6%)
08/08  M.A. Spider-Man #42 -  5,718  ( -2.4%)
09/08  M.A. Spider-Man #43 -  5,505  ( -3.7%)
10/08  M.A. Spider-Man #44 -  5,155  ( -6.4%)
11/08  M.A. Spider-Man #45 -  5,003  ( -2.9%)
12/08  M.A. Spider-Man #46 -  4,851  ( -3.0%)
01/09  M.A. Spider-Man #47 -  4,592  ( -5.3%)
02/09  M.A. Spider-Man #48 -  4,622  ( +0.7%)
03/09  M.A. Spider-Man #49 -  4,640  ( +0.4%)
04/09  M.A. Spider-Man #50 -  4,780  ( +3.0%)
                             6 mnth  ( -7.3%)
                             1 year  (-18.1%)
                             2 year  (-26.2%)
                             3 year  (-19.9%)
                             4 year  (-53.6%)

280. FRANKLIN RICHARDS
04/08  ---
05/08  Not So Secret Invasion - 6,764  (+19.0%)
06/08  ---
07/08  ---
08/08  Summer Smackdown       - 5,625  (-16.8%)
09/08  ---
10/08  ---
11/08  Sons of Geniuses       - 5,314  ( -5.5%)
12/08  ---
01/09  ---
02/09  Dark Reigning Cats...  - 5,176  ( -2.6%)
03/09  ---
04/09  April Fools            - 4,667  ( -9.8%)
                               6 mnth  (  --- )
                               1 year  (  --- )

284. YTHAQ: NO ESCAPE  [Soleil]
04/09  No Escape #1 of 3 - 4,415

293. MARVEL ADVENTURES AVENGERS  [All ages]
04/07  M.A. Avengers #12 -  7,092
=====
04/08  M.A. Avengers #23 -  5,556  ( -0.3%)
05/08  M.A. Avengers #24 -  5,358  ( -3.6%)
06/08  M.A. Avengers #25 -  5,327  ( -0.6%)
07/08  M.A. Avengers #26 -  5,418  ( +1.7%)
08/08  M.A. Avengers #27 -  5,200  ( -4.0%)
09/08  M.A. Avengers #28 -  4,966  ( -4.5%)
10/08  M.A. Avengers #29 -  4,844  ( -2.5%)
11/08  M.A. Avengers #30 -  4,679  ( -3.4%)
12/08  M.A. Avengers #31 -  ?,???  (  ??? )
01/09  M.A. Avengers #32 -  4,323  (  ??? )
02/09  M.A. Avengers #33 -  4,325  ( +0.0%)
03/09  M.A. Avengers #34 -  4,379  ( +1.2%)
04/09  M.A. Avengers #35 -  3,914  (-10.6%)
                           6 mnth  (-19.2%)
                           1 year  (-29.6%)
                           2 year  (-44.8%)

300. MARVEL ADVENTURES SUPER HEROES
07/08  M.A. Super Heroes #1 - 11,968
08/08  M.A. Super Heroes #2 -  5,956  (-50.2%)
09/08  M.A. Super Heroes #3 -  4,857  (-18.5%)
10/08  M.A. Super Heroes #4 -  4,542  ( -6.5%)
11/08  M.A. Super Heroes #5 -  4,233  ( -6.8%)
12/08  M.A. Super Heroes #6 -  ?,???  (  ??? )
01/09  M.A. Super Heroes #7 -  4,141  (  ??? )
02/09  M.A. Super Heroes #8 -  3,993  ( -3.6%)
03/09  M.A. Super Heroes #9 -  3,716  ( -6.9%)
04/09  M.A. Super Heroes #10 - 3,699  ( -0.5%)
                              6 mnth  (-18.6%)

Below that, LORDS OF AVALON: KNIGHT OF DARKNESS #5, MARVEL ADVENTURES FANTASTIC FOUR #47, MARVEL ILLUSTRATED: ODYSSEY #8 and MARVEL: YOUR UNIVERSE #3 all missed the Top 300.

6 month comparisons
===================

+47.9% - Exiles
+16.4% - Punisher
+ 9.2% - X-Men: Legacy
+ 6.4% - Ms Marvel
+ 1.2% - Thor
- 2.6% - Daredevil
- 2.9% - Invincible Iron Man
- 4.1% - X-Force
- 4.3% - Amazing Spider-Man
- 5.6% - New Avengers
- 6.5% - Cable
- 7.3% - Marvel Adventures Spider-Man
- 8.3% - Wolverine: First Class
-10.0% - Moon Knight
-11.8% - Captain America
-13.7% - Immortal Iron Fist
-14.3% - Ghost Rider
-15.8% - Punisher: Frank Castle
-17.0% - X-Factor
-18.0% - X-Men: First Class
-18.6% - Marvel Adventures Super Heroes
-19.2% - Marvel Adventures Avengers
-20.7% - Uncanny X-Men
-21.3% - Hercules
-21.6% - Deadpool
-21.8% - Mighty Avengers
-21.9% - Astonishing X-Men
-22.9% - Runaways
-23.6% - Wolverine: Origins
-23.8% - Amazing Spider-Man Family
-25.0% - Hulk
-25.8% - Guardians of the Galaxy
-26.2% - Avengers: The Initiative
-28.4% - Skaar, Son of Hulk
-28.7% - Captain Britain and MI-13
-30.6% - Squadron Supreme
-31.0% - Avengers/Invaders
-31.7% - Nova
-31.9% - Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter
-36.9% - Marvel Zombies
-39.6% - The Stand
-40.3% - Dark Tower


1 year comparisons
==================

+44.8% - Iron Man
+25.1% - Punisher
+ 6.5% - Exiles
- 6.9% - Nova
- 7.1% - X-Men: Legacy
- 8.8% - Wolverine: Origins
-10.6% - Ghost Rider
-13.4% - Thor
-14.3% - Amazing Spider-Man
-14.6% - Avengers: The Initiative
-17.4% - Hulk
-18.1% - Marvel Adventures Spider-Man
-18.4% - Moon Knight
-19.8% - New Avengers
-20.8% - Captain America
-22.7% - Kick-Ass
-24.3% - Hercules
-25.9% - Uncanny X-Men
-27.0% - X-Men: First Class
-27.8% - Iron Fist
-28.7% - Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter
-29.1% - Punisher: Frank Castle
-29.6% - Marvel Adventures Avengers
-29.8% - Mighty Avengers
-32.3% - Cable
-33.2% - X-Force
-34.9% - Ms Marvel
-37.8% - X-Factor
-46.5% - Wolverine: First Class
-55.2% - Thunderbolts
-63.0% - Dark Tower


2 year comparisons
==================

+55.3% - Hulk
+ 1.4% - Exiles
- 2.6% - Daredevil
- 3.9% - X-Men: Legacy
-12.9% - Iron Man
-13.5% - Uncanny X-Men
-15.5% - X-Factor
-24.5% - Thunderbolts
-25.0% - New Avengers
-26.2% - Marvel Adventures Spider-Man
-30.8% - Punisher
-34.7% - Punisher: Frank Castle
-35.8% - Ms Marvel
-36.6% - Wolverine: Origins
-38.9% - Nova
-40.0% - Iron Fist
-44.8% - Marvel Adventures Avengers
-45.1% - Mighty Avengers
-47.4% - Ghost Rider
-50.2% - Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter
-53.6% - X-Men: First Class
-64.7% - Avengers: The Initiative
-64.7% - Runaways
-67.2% - Moon Knight
-73.7% - Dark Tower


3 year comparisons
==================

+103.4% - Thunderbolts
+ 84.2% - Hulk
+ 40.3% - Captain America
+ 17.6% - Black Panther
+  1.6% - Iron Man
-  4.5% - Daredevil
-  8.7% - X-Men: Legacy
-  8.7% - Exiles
- 12.6% - Uncanny X-Men
- 17.4% - Runaways
- 19.9% - Marvel Adventures Spider-Man
- 22.7% - New Avengers
- 24.1% - Amazing Spider-Man
- 29.2% - X-Factor
- 35.9% - Punisher: Frank Castle
- 40.4% - Ms Marvel
- 43.3% - Astonishing X-Men
- 70.1% - Wolverine: Origins
- 78.1% - Moon Knight


4 year comparisons
==================

+ 71.1% - Thunderbolts
+ 70.9% - Hulk
+ 38.8% - Captain America
+  0.7% - Iron Man
-  7.8% - Daredevil
-  8.3% - Exiles
- 13.1% - X-Men: Legacy
- 16.0% - Amazing Spider-Man
- 18.9% - Uncanny X-Men
- 25.7% - Black Panther
- 32.2% - Runaways
- 42.1% - New Avengers
- 43.6% - Punisher: Frank Castle
- 53.6% - Marvel Adventures Spider-Man


5 year comparisons
==================

+158.4% - Thor
+125.4% - Thunderbolts
+ 77.7% - Iron Man
+ 76.6% - Hulk
+ 70.9% - New Avengers
+ 65.5% - Captain America
+  2.5% - Runaways
- 17.3% - Daredevil
- 17.8% - Exiles
- 20.5% - Uncanny X-Men
- 20.7% - Amazing Spider-Man
- 28.1% - X-Men: Legacy
- 36.2% - Punisher: Frank Castle

Comments

  1. Alan Coil says:

    I think we need more Wolverine titles. And Avengers. And X-Men. But not Spider-Man.

  2. One for each claw, perhaps. AMAZING TALES OF CENTRE LEFT.

  3. Chris says:

    Thanks for tracking these numbers every month!

  4. Ken B. says:

    Was Marvel really expecting us to believe that an inker was causing the FF delays when they’re still occurring?

  5. Alan Coil says:

    “The boost is thanks to, you guessed it, a Wolverine Art Appreciation variant – Chris Eliopoulos doing Charles Schultz.”

    You meant Charles Schulz, I’m sure.

  6. Alan Coil says:

    “At number 163, it’s yet another batch of the dreaded FALLEN SON: DEATH OF CAPTAIN AMERICA – IRON MAN, which Marvel continues to dump on the market at regular intervals. There’s 12,063 of them this month. Given Marvel’s normal caution about overprinting, you have to wonder why on earth Marvel printed so many of these things.”

    Perhaps they were destined for Wizard’s 9.8 Slabbed Comics Program.

  7. Mark Coale says:

    I think the Wizard of Oz book might be my favorite book from Marvel right now (with the critically acclaimed ATLAS and MI13 close behind). It’s such a pretty book and will be great as a collection. Glad there will be more after this one.

  8. Ken Raining says:

    Jesus, why doesn’t Marvel just put variant covers on every damn book they publish?

  9. I thought they did.

  10. Wraith says:

    With the plummeting sales on ASTONISHING X-MEN can people finally admit that Ellis name on a book is not enough alone to sell a book?

  11. Ken Raining says:

    “With the plummeting sales on ASTONISHING X-MEN can people finally admit that Ellis name on a book is not enough alone to sell a book? ”

    I thought that was astonishing myself (no pun… well, okay, pun intended).

  12. I thought it was kind of clear after Nextwave that Ellis’ name doesn’t sell a book at all.

  13. Wraith says:

    You would be surprised how many fans and editors believe that any comic book will and can sell soley on the NAME of just about any popular and/or critically acclaimed writer.

    And for the record I am not (I repeat “I AM NOT”) saying Ellis is a “crappy writer” or dissing his work on AXM (or anything else that he has written in the past). My point is/was that MOST (if not ALL) popular and/or critically acclaimed writers can cause a book to sell big numbers on their NAME alone.

  14. Kamandi says:

    Amazing 591 is the issue of the “world memory erasing”‘s explanation about Spiderman’s secret identity. There is the new unmasking too. The 3% increase is due to this events.

  15. It depends what you mean by “sell books.” There are undoubtedly people who buy comics because Warren Ellis is writing them. He clearly brought new readers to THUNDERBOLTS, for example. And his creator-owned indie work evidently sells well enough to make it worth his while. (As he’s pointed out many times, it doesn’t NEED to sell in Marvel numbers to make him more money, because he gets a bigger cut from the indie books.)

    He doesn’t have the drawing power to support a blockbuster, top-5 title on his name alone. But he does have the drawing power to turn a C- or D-list Marvel Universe title into a B-list title, which is more than can be said for most writers.

  16. Pierce says:

    While the new Exiles may have launched with lesser numbers than “New Exiles” did, I will go out on a limb here and say it will not plummet in slaes like Claremonts crappy title did, and should be fine, for a longer periof of time.

  17. faust says:

    What exactly is a ‘Wolverine Art Appreciation’ variant? Is it basically just a cover of wolverine on every other title? Because the ‘Art Appreciation’ part makes it sound like something more.

  18. Wraith says:

    Paul, I’m talking specifically about the work for hire work. I also acknowledge that there are fans out there who will buy a book solely because Ellis is writing it (we have several file customers at our store who ask for everything written by Ellis). My point was/is that his fanbase isn’t large enough to be a major sales booster for his company own Marvel and DC work.

    In regards to sales going up on THUNDERBOLTS when he took over that book, that had more to do with the book (a) being an INITIATIVE tie in for the first few issues of his run (b) having variant covers for the first 6 issues of his run and (c) dealers waiting to see how they should adjust their orders on the book after his first story arc and the gimmicks were over, which was made SLIGHTLY more difficult since the book was late several times (and yes, I know we have 3 weeks to adjust our orders before a book ships, but most dealers wait to the first issue of the 2nd arc after the “crossover” is over to make those adjustments).

  19. Love looking at these sales numbers.

    It’s amazing how X-Factor was really hit by shocking Larry Stroman art and poor PAD She-hulk SI crossover, but fingers crossed it’ll start to climb again with its strong storytelling.

    Can’t believe that Captain Britain canceled with all these Wolverine one-shots out there. I wonder how well it may have done if the economy hadn’t gone down the pan?

  20. I think what can be said with confidence about Ellis’s ability to sell comics is that while his name may sell books, it clearly doesn’t sell as many books as Whedon’s does.

  21. Legitsquare says:

    Spider-Girl was moved to Spider-Man family?
    I used to read Spider-Girl and I had no idea that occurred. I thought she just vanished.

  22. The “Wolverine Art Appreciation” covers are pictures of Wolverine in the style of famous painters (for the most part – there’s a Peanuts one and a cave painting one, off the top of my head, but you get the general idea).

  23. Travis Herrick says:

    Maybe Marvel added an extra zero on their initial order of that Iron Man comic.

  24. Reboot says:

    Fallen Son: Iron Man was Cap’s funeral, wasn’t it? Maybe they were counting on another slow news day.

  25. Faust says:

    Thanks for that Brian.

  26. Samy Merchi says:

    “From the look of this, people just weren’t particularly crying out for a revival of the 2099 imprint.”

    I know I was, but this wasn’t the 2099 guys I know. These were some other guys. Maybe if this hadn’t been “Ultimate 2099″ with different characters, things might have been different.

    Probably not by more than 2-3k though.

  27. Callum says:

    The Wolverine Art Appreciation variants, for the most part, were pretty well done.

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