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Ghost Rider circulation history online

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

by John Jackson Miller

Between the new movie and the lawsuit, Ghost Rider is much in the news, and The Comics Chronicles has received a number of requests for historic data. Complete Statement of Ownership data for three series have been posted here: Ghost Rider Vol. 1 (1973-83), Ghost Rider Vol. 2 (1990-98), and Ghost Rider 2099 (1994-96). The 2099 page had been previously online, but this is the first appearance here for data for the two longest-running Ghost Rider series.

While not an upper-tier title for Marvel in that time, the 1970s series lasted longer than most of the horror-themed titles from that era, and the title even went from bimonthly to monthly at the end of the decade.

The second series, meanwhile, was one of several Marvel revivals to get hot during the comics boom of the early 1990s. The best-selling individual issue, #28, had overall sales of 602,500 copies according to documentation, of which nearly half a million copies came from the Direct Market; this was during the "Rise of the Midnight Sons" promotion. Unfortunately, the title's fortunes tracked the collapse of the industry, losing half its sales in 1994 and again in 1995. I project the 81 issues of the first series sold 10-12 million copies combined; 17-19 million copies of all 93 issues of the second series combined.

In addition to the 2099 title, there was another Ghost Rider spinoff in 1994: Blaze. It didn't run long enough to produce circulation statements. A longer-running revival of the Ghost Rider series ran 35 issues from 2006-2009; I have not checked it for Statements. If anyone has, please let me know. Sales figures for the individual issues through Diamond can be seen on the Monthly Comics Sales pages; Diamond's sales would be the lion's share of sales for that title.

For background on Statements of Ownership, see here.

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