Monday, October 25, 2010

Sales Review: September 2010

I figured I would start the week off with the depressing stuff. The news on comic sales for the third quarter of 2010 was dismal with sales decreasing by more than 10%. That isn't good news. I suppose that we are in a rough economic time and that simple pleasures, like comics, are usually the first thing to go when people have to tighten their belts.

As always, this news is derived from the excellent ICv2 website including the list of the top 300 books for September. Here is that link:

Supergirl #56 was a middle part of the BizarroGirl storyline and got high marks on the internet.

Unfortunately, sales continued to slip with sales down 3% from August sales.

Now no book did particularly well last month. So slight decreases don't matter to me that much. But the book used to be ranked in the 60s and now is almost in the 80s. This sort of stuff is perplexing as you would think word of mouth and good reviews might make some people pick up the title.

I will be interested to see if we see an upswing in sales with the new creative team.

As for my 'underdog' comics, Doom Patrol and R.E.B.E.L.S., sales remained low and steady (although Doom Patrol slipped a bit).

R.E.B.E.L.S. # 20 actually went up by a few hundred sales which may be a sign that all the new faces on the title each have a small following. Or that enough noise has been made about the book that some folks took a chance. Or that the Finch Lobo cover was very cool.

Doom Patrol unfortunately has slipped about 10% in sales over the last few months. Will DC continue to publish a book with less than 10K in sales? We'll see.

Man, I am starting to dislike these sales reviews.


Nomah said...

I honestly don't find the poor sales that surprising. Beginning with issue #20, DC basically cut this books audience in half (I actually think more damage than that was done) with its radical changes to the character. The infighting and DC's lack of effort to take care of the fans that enjoyed the book back when it was a top seller have been devastating to sales.

Further, the "great reviews" and "word of mouth" are a mirage. This has been basically fueled by a strong, but vocal group of individual whom DC has handed Supergirl's reins to. If you look beyond their blogs and the sites where they shout down everyone who holds a different opinion, this title has received very negative reviews for some time. If you want to understand the poor sales, you have to be realistic about the large group who preferred Loeb, David's Linda, Supergirl in the 80's, etc. The shorts under the skirt and the overbearing ways DC ha attempted to reduce Supergirl's sex appeal (while hypocritically keeping Power Girl and male characters the same) has caused a large loss of readers. Readers are also frustrated by Supergirl's loss of intelligence, spirit, and ability to get the job done among the post Kelly writers. A large amount of Supergirl's fans don't want an anti-sex small minded goody-goody in lighthearted stories.

mathematicscore said...

Wow. My insular world is rocked.
The above comment is an intelligently worded argument that Supergirl stories aren't sexy enough.

Zero hope for humanity.

Anj said...

Well, the above argument is surprisingly similar to one which is rampantly posed by one writer on the DC Boards. Someone who equates the inclusion of shorts with the end of all good DC stories.

I don't necessarily agree with any of the above post but love open dialogue here.

I am not going to put up links to the many many good reviews of the run. And it seems like fans that I interact with loved the run. And I don't know if a lack of sex has pushed people away.

mathematicscore said...

I mean, this run has been some of the better superhero comics female OR male. Great action, pathos, and art, and a verisimilitude often missing from the works of Loeb and others.

I was about to say "The above attitude wreaks of bigotry, in the truest definition of the word." but I'm thinking better of it, as I've not read more than an issue of Loeb and Kelly's runs, so while I highly doubt Loeb is any better than the one issue I read(I've had numerous more lengthy bad experiences with him), I have enjoyed Joe Kelly's JLA and Superman runs to some extent, but I wouldn't put them above the current gates run. Plus, I started reading in earnest with 34, so missed a year and some change of the start to these "radical changes." I've not read silver/bronze age Supergirl stories at length, but have a sense that the current incarnation is really not too far off from that take. What's more, the Supergirl of the mid Nineties, while arguably a separate character, also seems closer to the current version than the earlier years of Loeb's Supergirl.

In conclusion, I hope than Nomah doesn't think that "sex sells" is the only way for a comic to be successful. And what's more, I hope that Supergirl's current trend of good stories and realistic gender attitudes inspires more in that vein than it doesn't.

Anonymous said...

There are eighty other comics on the above list that sell better than Supergirl, how many of them are built around upskirt shots?
Mighty few I think.
Open discussion is one thing, but colonization of dialogue is quite another...

Just sayin'

John Feer