Wednesday, January 22, 2020

December 2019 Sales Review

The sales numbers for December have been released and as usual ICv2 does a good job covering the market of comic sales. Here is a link to their coverage:

December finally brought us to the end of Doomsday Clock, and the final issue topped the sales charts. I think the underlying theme of putting Superman in the center of the DCU as the soul of the universe makes great sense. I don't know if we needed Dr. Manhattan and the Watchmen crew to tell us that story. And I don't know if we needed all the delays to get us there.

It is a shame. I am sure that at some point I will reread Doomsday Clock. But right now, in my head, it just feels like so much time was spent on characters that ultimately will have very little impact on the DCU that it feels a bit needless and narcissistic.

And for someone who already feels that Superman is the heart and soul of this place, I don't know if I needed this journey. All that said, I do feel that the way that ending was done was exceptional. That is the sort of issue you give a non-Superman fan when you try to convince them why he is so great.

But onto the Supergirl sales!

Supergirl #37 was another chapter in 'The Infected' storyline.

As I said in the review, this wasn't an issue for Supergirl fans. Fans want to read about her heroic journey and her adventures. We don't want to get treated to another twisted take on her skirting villainy.

So how did it sell?

Bolstered by a card stock variant, the book amassed 19,923 orders.

It is hard to know in the current comic marketplace. But I used to look at 20K as a sort of tipping point in a title's viability.

Supergirl, when she stars in her own book and isn't a side title for a bigger arc somewhere else, usually sells just north of the number. I worry that this incessant 'ancillary' status - first as part of Superman's Rogol Zaar arc and now as part of Batman/Superman's Batman Who Laughs story - is driving even her own fans away.

This just bears watching.

Last month also brought us the Batwoman/Supergirl 100-page giant.

I wouldn't naturally put these two together in stories but the CW series and crossover was probably the impetus.

This had a sort of hefty price point so I wondered how it would sell. That said, the solo Supergirl stories inside were very solid.

I actually was quite happy to see that it was ordered at 9848 units. Stores must have felt this had a decent shelf life to bring in that many copies of this pricey book.

But between these sales and yesterday's solicits I keep wondering when we will see Supergirl as the non-addled hero in her own book.


Anonymous said...

The Supergirl/Batwoman Giant was awesome. I'm hoping that it sold enough to have DC releasing more of them.

I'm guessing that the Walmart sales isnt part of those sales figures?

Anyway, I really needed this issue after what's going on in her own comic, combined with her weak presence in the first half of Supergirl season 5, combined with the DCSHG hiatus.

Anonymous said...

While Supergirl came it at #102 in the fused charts (at Comichron), I noticed a really large number of "superhero" titles sold less. Usually Supergirl is at the bottom of the DC superhero titles.

So, lower-selling DC titles are:

Nightwing, JLO, Teen Titans, Batman and the Outsiders, Lois Lane, Aquaman, He Man, Ocean Master YOTV, Deathstroke (#50 - I thought a final issue might have sold better), RWBY,
Hawkman, Jimmy Olsen, Metal Men, Gotham City Monsters, Doom Patrol, Wonder Twins.

Not to mention the low selling Walmart story reprints (Superman Up in the Sky etc.), the Dollar Comics, most of the Vertigo titles, most of the Joe Hill line. Even Far Sector, despite the initial excitement, only sold slightly more than Supergirl.

DC would have to cancel at least 25 books if 20,000 was the threshold!

Catwoman at 24K and Harley Quinn at 23K are not what they were. Wonder Woman is holding up a bit better at 27K but that's not earth shaking either.

Perhaps DC is staying afloat by selling more expensive books - the $5.99 card stocks and all the $6.99 and $9.99 books. They may be cannibalizing their own sales, but these more expensive books are probably more profitable.