DC Comics’ first post “New 52” crossover event, Villains Month, and Marvel’s Infinity crossover both helped propel comic sales in September to a mammoth 33.9% year-over-year gain. Forever Evil #1, the cornerstone of DC Villains Month event, was the top book of the month, and DC also managed to place four Batman-related Villains Month titles in the top 10. DC would have added considerably to its September totals had the publisher not had to allocate the 3-D covers in its Villains Month promotion.
Meanwhile Marvel placed two issues of its Infinity crossover in the second and third spots, while the initial volume in its X-Men: Battle of the Atom, the first major X-Men crossover event in several years ( which is being written by Brian Michael Bendis, see “ X-Men: Battle of the Atom”) finished in the #4 spot and helped put three other X-Men books in the top 25.
With all of its Villains Month machinations DC released almost twice as many comics in September as Marvel and won the marketshare battle by a large margin (see “Villains Month Gives DC a Win”), but, given the difficulty of repeating such a massive concentrated crossover event, DC’s September strategy is not replicable, so we can expect the marketshare numbers to revert to recent patterns next month. Mention should be made of the two non-Marvel and DC titles that made the top 25 in September. Dark Horse’s Star Wars #1 Lucas Draft, the initial entry in a new Star Wars series based on George Lucas’ original screenplays landed at #14 as it revitalized the publisher’s line of licensed Star Wars comics, while Image Comics The Walking Dead #114 landed at #19 after it posted a slight increase over its August total, though it should be noted that due to the increased number of top-selling comics in September, The Walking Dead went from #13 in August to #19 in September in spite of posting an increase in sales. The mother lode of September releases also helped keep down Image’s Saga #14, which narrowly missed the top 25 by fewer than 100 copies.
While comics soared nearly 34% in year-over-year September sales, graphic novels posted a much more modest 1.76% increase. The bestselling graphic novel in the comic market in September was Image’s East of West Vol.1, with 9,258 copies shipped during the month according to ICv2. Image’s policy of pricing the first trade paperback collections of its series at $9.95 definitely helped (East of West was the top quantity seller by more than 4,000 copies but only the #9 dollar book), but there is no denying Image’s dominance of the Graphic Novel top ten in September. With two volumes of both Saga and The Walking Dead also in the top ten, Image dominated with five, followed by DC with two and Dark Horse, IDW, and Marvel with one each.
But the graphic novel market is still suffering from a lack a potent new releases. Only five volumes in the top ten actually contained new material debuting in the GN format in September, a group that includes the hardcover debut of DC’s Justice League Vol.3, Dark Horse’s Star Wars: In the Shadow of Yavin (the first collection to collect Brian Wood's excellent new Star Wars comic), the second volume in IDW’s My Little Pony series, a collection of The Walking Dead covers created to benefit charity, and Marvel’s first Superior Spider-Man collection. Mention should be made of Marvel’s $75 Age of Ultron hardcover, which was #19 in terms of the quantity sold, but which was the #2 dollar book for the month.
The top manga title sold in the direct market in September was Sailor Moon Short Stories Vol. 1, which came it at number 27. It appears that direct market retailers may be missing the boat on Kodansha’s Attack on Titan manga, which is tearing it up in the bookstore market (see “September BookScan—Top 20 Graphic Novels”), but the highest-ranking AoT volume landed at #107 on Diamond’s September graphic novel chart.
For an analysis of the dollar trends in September, see "'Villains Month' Gives DC a Win."
For our estimates of actual sales by Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on comic books shipped during September, see "Top 300 Comics Actual--September 2013."
For our estimates of actual sales by Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on graphic novels shipped during September, see "Top 300 Graphic Novels Actual--September 2013."
For our estimates of actual sales by Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on comic books shipped during August, see "Top 300 Comics Actual--August 2013."
For our estimates of actual sales by Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on graphic novels shipped during August, see "Top 300 Graphic Novels Actual--August 2013."
For an overview and analysis of the best-selling comics and graphic novels in August, see "'Infinity' #1 a Million Dollar Book." For an analysis of the dollar trends in August, see "Comic & Graphic Novel Sales Drop in August."
For our index to our reports on the top comic and graphic novel preorders for January 2000 through September 2013, see "ICv2's Top 300 Comics and Top 300 GNs Index."
Graphic Novels Tread Water, As Comics Soar
Posted by ICv2 on October 7, 2013 @ 9:29 am CT
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