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52 Variants Garner Million Dollar Book

And Other February Sales Notes

Published: 03/12/2013 02:20am
DC’s 52-variant stunt on Justice League of America #1 (see “Variant Covers Jump the Shark?”) contributed to the issue’s big numbers in February, with over 307,000 copies sold to comic stores by Diamond Comic Distributors (see “Top 300 Comics Actual—February”).  That amounts to over $1.2 million at retail, and million dollar books are still a pretty rare occasion in the comics business. Amazing Spider-Man #700, the most recent previous example, was also supported by heavy use of variants, with numerous “exceed orders” incentive variants pushing the book to over $1.6 million retail (see “Spidey Tops $1.6 Million”).
It’s unclear what impact the variants on JLA #1 will have in the aftermarket. DC says it is sold out of 14 of the 52 covers, plus the combo pack and the collector’s bundle with all the covers, but those sell-outs could have occurred even with minimal reorders, depending on the overprints. And eBay prices are all over the map; it’s too early for any clear trends to emerge. But with these kinds of sell-ins, it’s likely that there will be more variant-heavy issues, despite publisher protestations to the contrary (see “DC to Cut Variants”). 
Uncanny X-Men #1 also had a strong showing, with over 177,000 sold in.
Batman #17, with the final chapter of the “Death of a Family” arc, had a big jump to over 150,000. 
Superior Spider-Man, with the Doc Oc Spidey, is holding up pretty well with roughly 102,000 and 96,000 for the two February issues. 
Nova #1, spun out of AvX and written by Jeph Loeb, and Guardians of the Galaxy #0.1 both had solid launches, with over 80,000 sold. 
On the graphic novel side (see “Top 300 Graphic Novels—February”), the latest League of Extraordinary Gentlemen topped 10,000 copies. The #2 title was the hardcover collecting Batman: The Night of the Owl, with around 8,300 copies. 
BOOM!’s Adventure Time continues to do well, with around 6,200 of the latest collection sold to comic stores in February.

Here are ICv2's estimates of the North American sales of the top 25 comics sold through Diamond Comic Distributors in February of 2013:
307,734                 Justice League of America #1
177,463                 Uncanny X-Men #1
150,684                 Batman #17
105,304                 Justice League #17
101,811                 Superior Spider-Man #3
  95,892                 Superior Spider-Man #4
  94,615                 Uncanny X-Men #2
  87,539                 Uncanny Avengers #4
  85,824                 Detective Comics #17
  85,267                 Secret Avengers #1
  85,234                 All-New X-Men #7
  84,868                 Avengers #6
  82,452                 Avengers #5
  80,857                 Nova #1
  80,344                 Guardians of the Galaxy #0.1
  72,110                 New Avengers #1
  71,060                 Green Lantern #17
  65,751                 Batgirl #17
  63,575                 The Walking Dead #107 (MR)
  62,107                 Nightwing #17
  60,988                 Batman and Robin #1
  58,578                 Aquaman #17
  58,254                 Savage Wolverine #2
  57,312                 Deadpool #5
  57,189                 Action Comics #17

For an analysis of the dollar trends in February, see "Comic Market Continues Growth."
For our estimates of actual sales by Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on comic books shipped during February, see "Top 300 Comics Actual--February 2013."

For our estimates of actual sales by Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on graphic novels shipped during February, see "Top 300 Graphic Novels Actual--February 2013."

For our estimates of actual sales by Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on comic books shipped during Janaury, see "Top 300 Comics Actual--January 2013."

For an overview and analysis of the best-selling comics and graphic novels in January, see"'Superior Spider-Man' Tops in January."  For an analysis of the dollar trends in January, see "Comic Sales Roar in January."

For our index to our reports on the top comic and graphic novel preorders for January 2000 through February 2013, see "ICv2's Top 300 Comics and Top 300 GNs Index."
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