Ultimate FF Best-Selling Regular Marvel Since Origin
Based on December Numbers
Published: 01/13/2004 12:00am
Ultimate Fantastic Four #1 came in at 173,441 copies sold by Diamond U.S. in December, the best-selling performance by a regular Marvel title since the final issue of Origin nearly two years ago (FF #60 was promotionally priced, and JLA/Avengers was a DC/Marvel co-production). This number represents just initial U.S. direct shipments of the book, which shipped the last week of December. Marvel announced that it had printed over 200,000 copies (see 'Ultimate FF #1 Breaks 200K Barrier'), a number that includes United Kingdom orders and copies for other channels, as well as any left over after the first week's shipment.
Over-all, orders slipped vs. November, with 18 of the top 25 titles down vs. the previous month's issues.
Marvel continued to use its key franchises to dominate the top slots, taking 20 of the top 25. Seven of those twenty were two X-Men titles: four issues of X-Treme X-Men and three of Uncanny. DC had the other five top 25 slots.
On the other hand, Marvel was shut out of the top ten slots on the graphic novel list, where Dark Horse took five of the top ten, and DC three, including the #1 graphic novel of the month, Batman Hush Vol. 2, with nearly 13,000 copies sold.
The top 25 comics, with our estimates of the number sold during December, are:
173,441 Ultimate Fantastic Four #1
115,517 Marvel 1602 #5
110,591 New X-Men #150
109,819 Ultimate Spider-Man #50
104,572 Ultimates #12
104,443 Ultimate X-Men #40
102,725 Superman/Batman #4
100,289 Ultimate Six #5
96,990 Ultimate Spider-Man #51
96,420 Superman/Batman #5
91,899 Batman #622
90,484 Amazing Spider-Man #502
90,318 Uncanny X-Men #434
89,767 Uncanny X-Men #435
89,105 Uncanny X-Men #436
74,659 Wolverine #9
70,321 Supreme Power #5
69,255 Teen Titans #6
62,721 Spectacular Spider-Man #8
61,030 X-Treme X-Men #35
58,981 JLA #91
58,512 X-Treme X-Men #36
58,043 X-Treme X-Men #37
57,814 Avengers #7557,804 X-Treme X-Men #38
We are estimating actual sales by Diamond U.S. (primarily to North American comic stores) rather than pre-orders (as we did for the past several years) because Diamond recently changed its reporting and began basing its indexes on actual sales (see 'ICv2 Kicks Off New Top 300 Reporting'). We use those indexes and publisher sales data to estimate a sales number for Batman (the anchor title diamond uses in its calculations), and use that number and the indexes to estimate Diamond's sales on the remaining titles. We can check the accuracy of our numbers by comparing the Batman number that we calculate using multiple data points; our numbers for Batman are within 1/10 of 1% of each other, ensuring a high degree of accurcy.
Because of that change, we will not be able to do year over year comparisons until February of 2004, but in general, it's an improvement to have actual numbers to work with rather than preorders, which have significant differences from sales.
For our estimates of actual orders to Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on comic books scheduled to ship during December, see 'Top 300 Comics Actual--December 2003.'
For our estimates of actual orders to Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on graphic novels scheduled to ship during December, see 'Top 50 Graphic Novels Actual--December 2003.'
For our estimates of actual orders to Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on comic books scheduled to ship during November, see 'Top 300 Comics Actual--November 2003.'
For our estimates of actual orders to Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on graphic novels scheduled to ship during November, see 'Top 50 Graphic Novels Actual--November 2003.'
For our index to our reports on the top comic and graphic novel preorders for January 2000 through December 2003, see 'ICv2's Top 300 Comics and Top 50 GNs Index.'
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