Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Sales Review: June 2015

I thought for sure that this was going to be the  first sales review I have done on this blog where I wasn't going to cover a book with Supergirl in it.

I suppose I should consider that a victory. I have gone seven years reviewing Supergirl sales without taking a break. But the new DCYou doesn't have a Supergirl title. The only time we hear of Supergirl is when we hear she 'bolted' from the Justice League United. The only time we see her, some version of her, on the last page of the JL3001 book.

In fact, I find it both normal and strange that she hasn't been mentioned at all in the Superman books. Superman is revealed and depowered. You would think he would contact his family. But in the DCYou, heck in the New 52, Superman and Supergirl have never been super-close.

I don't understand why Supergirl seems to be a forbidden subject.

The sales review, as always, is in my opinion best reviewed over on ICv2. Here is the link:

Now June was the first issue of The Truth, the new take on Superman, with a new writer Gene Luen Yang. It had a huge publicity push. It was going to shake up all of Superman's mythos. It was going to make everything about Superman 'better' and 'more interesting'!

But how its first issue, Superman #41, sell?

We can talk all about how 53K in sales in a great book in the current comic market. That this is a highly successful release.

But let's be honest.

This was a new plotline of Superman, resetting the landscape of DC's premier character. It was trumpeted. It was supposed to be a fresh, innovative take.

And it only sold 53K.

I have to wonder if DC thought this would do better.

I had no thoughts at all of getting Justice League 3001 #1 when it was announced. Heck, I didn't get Justice League 3000. I have been a bit burned recently with both Keith Giffen and J.M. Dematteis so the writers didn't grab me. And while I like Howard Porter's art, I wasn't sure if that was enough.

Surprisingly, folks I trust were telling me that JL3K was a decent read with some insanity and continuity and nods to odd corners of DC lore. That the tone is a bit inane but not a forced non-humor which sometimes I feel Giffen books suffer from.

Then I heard that Supergirl was going to be in the book.

And so all the nudges from friends and the Howard Porter art and the only Supergirl in the current DCU made me grab it.

I am relatively sure that the first iteration, Justice League 3000, sold less than 20K.

This issue sold 32K, a better start than I would have thought. Maybe it was the #1? Maybe it was the variant cover?

I thoroughly enjoyed it and will be on board. And, in fact, I liked it enough that I am looking for the older title's back issues. So that is a win.

Now why do I show Lobo #7?

It isn't to comment on the quality of the book. I will freely admit I haven't read this book.

Well, Lobo was selling pretty poorly before the Convergence event. I couldn't believe that somehow it survived the axe when DC was cancelling books and starting up new titles. And I especially didn't understand it when Supergirl got canceled despite selling many more issues than Lobo.

The trend continues. Lobo #7 sold 19K.

In the grand scheme of things, DC got completely squelched by Marvel this month, something so consistent that it is no longer news.


Anonymous said...

That should show DC and those who thought Truth was a good idea. From what one or two of the Lois fanbase have tweeted, last month's Superman/Wonder Woman actually dropped in sales from where it was originally. Truth is not only dividing the fanbase (and actual credible reviewers who don't just pander to the companies) it's not making the money DC want it to. Stability and growth are how you reap the sales reward over time, not shock value and gimmicks.


AndNowInStereo said...

If they had published a Supergirl comic this month, I like to think it would at the very least kept pace with Gotham Academy and Catwoman, as it had been in March. Given the retailer incentives DC tried for June combined with the character's raised profile, I think it would probably have done noticeably better.

I think DC are never going to top the chart again. They weren't doing that well even in 2014 - DCs lack of a strong mid-tier set of books combined with too many ultra-weak sellers compared to Marvel's new very successful top ranked books like Thor meant they were already on the back foot. But in 2015 when Marvel now has Star Wars and are making it a huge success, DC have no chance. Watch that gap get even wider as the Star Wars movies come out. They're going to be lucky if five years from now their market share isn't caught by Image, seeing how much goodwill that publisher is getting right now. I think Image is poised for a lot of growth, and all I see foresee for DC is stagnation unless they can dig their biggest IP out of the gutter.

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

Anj: I wasn't a fan of JL3000, like you said, burned out on the writing. But I truly hated Howard Porter's art compared to, say, his JLA run with Grant Morrison. It could have been two things. 1/he inks his own pencils. 2/he had to rush his art because DC chose to take Kevin MacGuire off the art chores ahead of time.

Porter's art has gotten better, so I want to say it was #2. So if you find the early issues of JL3000, don't give Porter the bum's rush. Editorial edict gave him a tight deadline, and I saw it most in the faces, everyone seemed to be gritting their teeth all the time.

Anj said...

I am not in publishing at all.

Why drop Supergirl and print Lobo?

And I agree with you Thomas. Marvel has Star Wars. They also have ESPN, thDisney Channel, and ABC as publicity streams.

Thanks for all comments!

Jay said...

No one storyline is going to break Superman free from the preconceptions about him and the damage he had sustained from years of a bad product prior to the reboot. Three years going on four isn't going to wash away at least a decade if not more of damage. I don't know how long it'll take. Looking at it from more a pessimistic view, who knows if it will happen at all. But I don't like being a pessimist.

Anonymous said...

In terms of Lobo, I was kind of under the impression that DC had been interested in expanding their comics to include more interstellar-based stories. I mean, you have Green Lantern, Sinestro, Omega Men, and so on.

Anonymous said...

To be fair, Lobo isn't that bad. It's actually pretty good. Could be better, but still.