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'Obama' Comic on Top Again

'ASM' #583's Unprecedented Feat

Published: 03/17/2009 12:00am

For the first time since ICv2 has been tracking sales of periodical comics, the same issue topped the charts for two months in a row.  The 4th and 5th printings of Amazing Spider-Man #583, aided by a cover featuring President Obama, sold 148,805 copies in February after posting a record total of 352,983 in January.  Batman #686, the first part of a two-issue post-Batman RIP special written by Neil Gaiman, came in a distant second with a total of 111,353. 

 

Marvel placed four Dark Reign titles in the top ten led by New Avengers #50, which finished at number three.  Overall Marvel placed 18 titles in the top 25, while DC had six and Dark Horse one.  DC placed four Origins & Omens titles in the top 25.  Nine titles posted gains in circulation led by Batman #686 (2 covers; 50/50 ratio), which went from 72 thousand for #685 to more than 111 thousand, while fifteen titles declined.

 

Graphic novel sales dropped a substantial 9% versus sales in February of 2008 in spite of a spike in sales of the perennial backlist title Watchmen, which buoyed by the early March debut of Zack Snyder’s movie adaptation, sold nearly twice as many copies as the number two graphic novel release, Batman RIP Deluxe HC.  Oni’s Scott Pilgrim Vol. 5 finished a very close third (just wait till the Scott Pilgrim movie, which is currently in production, comes out and watch Bryan Lee O’Malley’s graphic novels fly off the bookstore shelves). 

 

All Star Superman Vol. 2 and Brian Woods’ DMZ Volume 6 came in at number four and number five respectively, giving DC 4 out of the top five graphic novel releases for the month.  Overall Marvel had 11 books in the top 25, followed by DC with 8, Viz Media with 8, and Oni, Image, and Dark Horse with one each.  Image’s $4.99 edition of Darkness: Accursed Vol.1 finished at number six, followed by Viz Media’s Naruto Vol. 34, the top February manga release in the direct market.

 

Here are ICv2's estimates of the sales by Diamond Comic Distributors to comic stores on the top 25 comic titles in February:

 

148,805           Amazing Spider-Man #483

111,353           Batman #686

106,831           New Avengers #50 DKR

  96,718           Thor #600

  93,553           Dark Avengers #2

  77,217           Hulk #10

  76,247           Mighty Avengers #21 (Corrected Copy)

  72,685           Mighty Avengers #22

  71,684           Uncanny X-Men #506

  69,710           Justice League of America #30 (Origins)

  68,908           Green Lantern #38 (Origins)

  67,525           Buffy the Vampire Slayer #22

  65,207           Justice Society of America #24 (Origins)

  62,850           Captain America #47

  61,358           Final Crisis Legion of 3 Worlds #3 (of 5)

  60,286           Amazing Spider-Man #585

  60,118           Amazing Spider-Man #587

  59,521           Amazing Spider-Man #586

  57,704           Secret Warriors #1 DKR

  56,517           X-Men Legacy #221

  51,649           Invincible Iron Man #10

  51,449           X-Force #12

  49,565           Ultimate Spider-Man #131

  49,520           Fantastic Four #564

  48,360           Action Comics #874 (Origins)                      

 
We are estimating actual sales by Diamond U.S. (primarily to North American comic stores), using Diamond's published sales indexes and publisher sales data to estimate a sales number for Batman (the anchor title Diamond uses in its calculations) and using 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 accuracy.

For an analysis of the dollar trends in February, see "Comics Down Slightly in February."

For our estimates of actual orders to Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on comic books scheduled to ship during February, see "Top 300 Comics Actual--February 2009."

For our estimates of actual orders to Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on graphic novels scheduled to ship during February, see "Top 300 Graphic Novels Actual--February 2009."

For our estimates of actual orders to Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on comic books scheduled to ship during January, see "Top 300 Comics Actual--January 2009."

For our estimates of actual orders to Diamond U.S. from comic specialty stores on graphic novels scheduled to ship during January, see "Top 300 Graphic Novels Actual--January 2009."

For our index to our reports on the top comic and graphic novel preorders for January 2000 through February 2009, see "ICv2's Top 300 Comics and Top 100 GNs Index."

 
 
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