Advance orders for Amazing Spider-Man #1 have topped 500,000 copies, Marvel’s told CBR.  The book will feature the return of Peter Parker, who "died" last year in Amazing Spider-Man #700, which generated sell-in of over 200,000 copies to North American comic shops in the first month.  That put the retail value of the initial sell-in at $1.6 million (see "Spidey Tops $1.6 Million"), at the time the top dollar comic in recent memory.

Now Peter Parker is set to return (see "Peter Parker to Return") and Marvel has pulled out all the stops to generate sales for the first issue of the re-launched Amazing Spider-Man.  It will be written by Dan Slott, who’s been planning this part of the storyline since before Parker was killed, which led to death threats and other unpleasantness from fans that thought he was killing one of their favorite characters forever (see "'Spider-Man' Scribe Gets Death Threats").  Art will be by Humberto Ramos.

There’s no context to tell us what Marvel’s number includes (for example, world sales or just North America), so we will have to wait to see how actual shipments to North American retailers in April compare to other big hits in the past, but it’s clear that this is going to be a blockbuster.  At $5.99, it’s a  cheaper than the $7.99 Amazing Spider-Man #700, but up-priced enough so that it will clearly blow that book out of the water in dollars.

Marvel’s not shy about using incentive and other variants to pump up sales, and that’s certainly a factor here, which will put a lot of copies out in the marketplace.  Marvel has successfully convinced retailers to place a big bet on the success of this book.  Let’s hope it pays off in sell-through.