DC Comics took the #1 spot for comic book sales in September by smashing the 200,000 barrier to smithereens with the final issue of the Jim Lee Jeph Loeb Batman 'Hush' storyline, which sold an amazing 233,775 copies. But while Batman #619 was topping the piece chart by some 44,000, the long-awaited DC/Marvel crossover book, JLA/Avengers was, thanks to its $5.95 price tag and sales of almost 190K, the month's top dollar comic by more than a factor of two--a million dollar book. Just goes to show what can happen when the two top publishers cooperate on the right project. One interesting side effect of the financial success of JLA/Avengers is that it has provided artist George Perez with enough of a financial cushion that he can remain at CrossGen (see 'Perez Stays At CrossGen').
Seven of the top 15 books went up, while six declined and two were new (Ultimate Six #1 and G.I. Joe/Transformers #1). In most cases the declines were small, while New X-Men, Wolverine and Teen Titans registered substantial gains. The second issue of Neil Gaiman's 1602 fared quite well, dropping from 150,000 to 132,737, while consumers were less kind to the second issue of Superman/Batman, which dropped from 134,000 to 104,000. Marvel's Supreme Power #2 reversed the normal trend by selling 77,000, an increase of more than 7,000 over its debut issue. Marvel had 12.5 out of the top 15, with DC snagging the other 2.5 (we are giving equal credit for JLA/Avengers). Dreamwave's Transformers/G.I. Joe was the lone non-premier title in the top 25, with Image's half of that crossover project coming in just a few spots below at #19.
When it came to the top 25 graphic novels sold in September, Marvel and DC's role were reversed, with DC snagging 10 out of the top 15 titles. Tokyopop's Love Hina Vol. 14, which came in at number 6, was the top non-DC title. Marvel placed 5 titles in the Top 25 Graphic Novels, while Tokyopop had three and Dark Horse and Image one each. Neil Gaiman's Sandman: Endless Nights dominated the graphic novels in dollars sold, accounting for more dollars this month than any comic book, with the sole exception of JLA/Avengers.
The Top 25 comics, with our estimates of the quantities sold during September, are:
233,775 Batman #619
189,919 JLA/Avengers #1 (of 4)
132,737 Marvel 1602 #2 (of 8)
131,943 Ultimate Six #1 (of 6)
108,612 Ultimate X-Men #37
105,573 New X-Men #146
105,409 Ultimate Spider-Man #46
104,474 Superman/Batman #2
101,295 New X-Men #145
94,165 Uncanny X-Men #430
92,341 Uncanny X-Men #431
92,294 Amazing Spider-Man #58
81,728 Wolverine #5
77,496 Supreme Power #2
74,527 Spectacular Spider-Man #4
73,803 Transformers/G.I. Joe #1 (of 6)
66,626 Teen Titans #3
64,218 X-Treme X-Men #31
60,431 G.I. Joe/Transformers #3
59,636 Daredevil #51
59,496 JLA #86
58,678 JLA #87
58,584 Incredible Hulk #60
58,561 Daredevil #52
57,298 Incredible Hulk #61
We are estimating actual sales by Diamond U.S. (primarily to North American comic stores) rather than pre-orders (as we did for the past several years) because Diamond recently changed its reporting and began basing its indexes on actual sales (see 'ICv2 Kicks Off New Top 300 Reporting'). We use those indexes and publisher sales data to estimate a sales number for Batman (the anchor title diamond uses in its calculations), and use that number and the indexes to estimate Diamond's sales on the remaining titles. Because of that change, we will not be able to do year over year comparisons until February of 2004, but in general, it's an improvement to have actual numbers to work with rather than preorders, which have significant differences from sales.
For our estimates of actual orders to Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on comic books scheduled to ship during September, see 'Top 300 Comics Actual--September 2003.'
For our estimates of actual orders to Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on graphic novels scheduled to ship during September, see 'Top 50 Graphic Novels Actual--September 2003.'
For our estimates of actual orders to Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on comic books scheduled to ship during August, see 'Top 300 Comics Actual--August 2003.'
For our estimates of actual orders to Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on graphic novels scheduled to ship during August, see 'Top 50 Graphic Novels Actual--August 2003.'
For our index to our reports on the top comic and graphic novel preorders for January 2000 through September 2003, see 'ICv2's Top 300 Comics and Top 50 GNs Index.'