After a year in which comics and graphic novel sales to comic stores were down over 10% (see "Year Ends on Down Note"), there was no recovery in January of the new year, according to information released by Diamond Comic Distributors.  While the percentage change abated, to a 1.97% decline vs. January 2017, the full picture was significantly worse, as January 2018 was a five-week month, and January 2017 was a four-week month.

Comic sales were down 4.29%, and graphic novels were up 3.96%.

Marvel Comics returned to a narrow lead in market share for January, after DC Comics took the top publisher spot in December.

January 2018 Comic Store Market Share

34.30%         Marvel Comics
33.80%         DC Entertainment
  9.48%         Image Comics
  4.42%         IDW Publishing
  2.50%         Dark Horse Comics
  2.13%         BOOM! Studios 
  1.61%         Dynamite Entertainment
  1.29%         VIZ Media
  0.96%         Titan Comics
  0.89%         Oni Press
  8.63%         Other Non-Top 10

DC Comics had the top four bestselling comics in January, with Doomsday Clock and Dark Nights Metal leading the way, and six of the Top 10, vs. only three from Marvel.

Top 10 Comics by Units Shipped – January 2018

 1.  Doomsday Clock #3
 2.  Dark Nights: Metal #5
 3.  Batman #38
 4.  Batman #39
 5.  The Walking Dead #175
 6.  Avengers #675
 7.  Batman: White Knight #4
 8.  Amazing Spider-Man / Venom: Venom Inc. Omega #1
 9.  Batman and The Signal #1
10.  Old Man Hawkeye #1

Diamond began releasing charts showing the top dollar books this month, which we share here.  The big change was watching two Marvel titles move up from #6 and #8 to #3 and #5, reflecting their higher cover prices.

Top 10 Comics by Dollars Invoiced – January 2018

 1.  Doomsday Clock #3
 2.  Dark Nights: Metal #5
 3.  Avengers #675
 4.  The Walking Dead #175
 5.  Amazing Spider-Man / Venom: Venom Inc. Omega #1
 6.  Batman #38
 7.  Batman: White Knight #4
 8.  Batman #39
 9.  Batman and The Signal #1
10.  Old Man Hawkeye #1

Dark Horse Comics' second Legend of Korra volume topped unit sales for graphic novels in January.  Another title for younger readers, the latest DC Super Hero Girls volume, was #3, showing the growing presence of material for kids, and the growing audience for such material, in comic stores.

To 10 Graphic Novels – January 2018

 1.  Legend of Korra Volume 2: Turf Wars Pt. 2 TP
 2.  The Wicked & The Divine Vol. 6: Imperial Phase Part 2 TP
 3.  DC Super Hero Girls: Date with Disaster TP
 4.  Descender Vol. 5: Rise of the Robots TP
 5.  Kill or Be Killed Vol. 3 TP
 6.  Saga Vol. 8 TP
 7.  Wolverine: Old Man Logan Vol. 6: Days of Anger TP
 8.  Vision HC
 9.  Saga Vol. 1 TP
10.  Harley Quinn Vol. 4: Surprise, Surprise TP

The moves on the chart of the top graphic novels by dollars were more dramatic, with Marvel’s $39.99 Vision HC volume taking the #1 slot, and Gene Colan's Tomb of Dracula Artist’s Edition from IDW Publishing, at $125, moving up to #2.  When a collectors’ item at a super-premium price point is the #2 dollar book in comic stores, it's a great sign that the collector market is strong, but also a sign that more broad-based titles at lower price points can't generate enough dollars to take the top of the dollar chart.

For our estimates of actual sales by Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on comic books shipped during January, see "Top 300 Comics -- January 2018."

For our estimates of actual sales by Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on graphic novels shipped during January, see "Top 300 Graphic Novels -- January 2018."

​For our estimates of actual sales by Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on comic books shipped during December, see "Top 300 Comics -- December 2017."

For links to all previous Top 300 Comic and Top 300 Graphic Novel articles, see "ICv2 Top 300 Comics and Top 300 GNs Index."