Saturday, 22 June 2013

Comic Book Sales: May 2013

May was a slightly smaller month in comics, but it still had its hits and one of them was Brian Wood's brand new Marvel NOW! X-Men series. The title - which has become known as the "adjective-less" X-Men - was the highest selling comic of May, and it seems that the many delays the title suffered may have helped it more than people expected! The comic sold a very impressive 177,000 copies. In TEN's monthly Comic Sales report, we're going to be talking the hits and misses of last month, but first, here's the Top 10.

Top Sellers

Marvel: As I mentioned above, Marvel's top-selling comic of last month was Brian Wood's X-Men with Age of Ultron #7 and #8 rounding out their Top 3. Just missing out on a spot in the Top 10 was Kieron Gillen's Iron Man #9 which settled for No. 11 selling just over 78,000 copies.

DC: As you can see from the grid, Scott Snyder's Batman title continues to be DC's best-selling book with nearly 130,000 copies sold last month - and that number will surely go up next month when Snyder's next big story Zero Year begins. Justice League remains just behind Batman, however this may change soon with DC's Summer event Trinity War just around the corner.
Outside the Top 10, DC's Justice League of America #4 has a place at No. 12 (77,856 copies sold), with DC's last Top 20 title being Green Lantern #20 which is at No. 19 with 67,414 copies sold.

Meanwhile, over at DC's Vertigo imprint Scott Snyder launched his new mini-series The Wake. The book came in at a respectable No. 40, however I was expecting a higher entry considering just how big the writer is at the moment.

Image: It was yet another great month for Image as the publisher's The Walking Dead continues to sell very strongly. The Walking Dead #110 ranks at No. 13 with 76,455 copies sold. However, that wasn't all as J. Michael Straczynski's new book Ten Grand also launched last month as part of the publisher's relaunched Joe's Comics imprint. It made a very good debut ranking No. 24 with over 57,000 copies sold. However, Image's new series Bounce left something to be desired, with a somewhat lacklustre launch leaving it at No. 95 with 24,259 copies sold. Still, Image remains the only independent publisher whose sales numbers stack up quite equally against the big two (Marvel and DC).

Other Publishers: While none have quite the chart presence as Image, many other independent publishers had books in the Top 100. Dark Horse's Star Wars series - written by chart-topper Brian Wood - continues to do well charting at No. 41 with 44,310 copies sold.
Meanwhile, Boom Studio's new series Regular Show got off to a good start ranking No. 56 with 38,466 copies sold.
IDW managed to get two titles in the Top 100 last month with My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic #7 at No. 68 (32,188 copies sold), and their TMNT ongoing series at No. 78 with 27,759 copies sold.

Cancellation Watch!

Marvel have started cutting away at their lower selling titles recently with Dark Avengers, The Winter Soldier, Red She-Hulk, Gambit and the long-running titles X-Factor and Journey Into Mystery all being cancelled. The news also came recently that the first cancellation of one of Marvel's all-new Marvel NOW! titles is Morbius: The Living Vampire - hardly surprising seeming as the title was selling worse than all Marvel's other recent cancellations (apart from Journey Into Mystery). Last month saw #5 of the series, and some of its lowest numbers yet with just over 15,000 copies sold leaving it at No. 149. The series is ending in September with its ninth issue.

So what could be next for Marvel's itchy cancelling finger? Venom, Scarlet Spider, and Fearless Defenders would all be safe bets, as all three seem to be dropping in numbers fast. This could mean that Cullen Bunn will have a little more time on his hands as he is the writer of two of those titles. We'll keep you updated on all the cancellation rumours.

However, while Marvel may have a few struggling titles it has to be said that it is DC who is worse off. Almost all of the new titles the publisher has been launching are quickly turning into utter failures! This includes The Phantom Stranger (No. 135), JLA's Vibe (No. 150), and JLA's Katana (No. 152). However, it is Batwing that is still DC's lowest selling, not yet cancelled book by a long shot. The book's May sales were a measly 13,302 leaving it at No. 161. It seems then that Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray's creative shake-up did little to help this title and DC may soon have no option but to give up on it.

This month saw the launch of two new DC titles, The Movement and The Green Team, both of which struggle to leave a mark on the charts debuting at No. 74 and No. 77 respectively. I can't help but think that these two books share a similar future to the aforementioned Vibe, Katana, and Phantom Stranger...

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