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John Jackson Miller and other pop culture archaeologists interested in comics history.


Friday, December 12, 2014

November comics orders strong; 2014 sales projected to finish up 5%

by John Jackson Miller
Retailer orders for comic books and graphic novels in November 2014 were reported this morning by Diamond Comic Distributors, and the preliminary report finds overall sales were up for the sixth month in a row. Comic shops in North America ordered $45.7 million in print product in the month, up about $3.5 million, or 8.36% over last November. Both this November and last November had four shipping weeks.

Both comics and graphic novels were up year-over-year in units and dollars. Comic book unit sales had been running slightly behind last year overall; November's strong comic book sales brought the category almost to parity with last year's total. A similar performance in December would mean all categories in 2014 would finish ahead of 2013.

The month-to-month numbers were down from October's blockbuster figures, though that month had one more sales week. The comparative sales statistics for November:
NOVEMBER 2014 VS. OCTOBER 2014    
Comics -22.73% -22.12%
Graphic Novels -8.49% -3.21%
Total Comics & Graphic Novels -18.40% -20.73%
Comics 5.47% 5.84%
Graphic Novels 14.44% 21.00%
Total Comics & Graphic Novels 8.36% 7.03%
Comics 3.80% -0.11%
Graphic Novels 6.16% 6.52%
Total Comics & Graphic Novels 4.52% 0.39%

Marvel led the market shares in both units and dollars in a month in which Image, boosted by a new Walking Dead collection, crossed into double digits in both categories. The market shares for November:

Marvel 34.88% 37.82%
DC 27.47% 31.64%
Image 10.62% 11.06%
IDW 5.65% 4.53%
Dark Horse 4.85% 3.58%
Dynamite 2.84% 2.54%
Boom 2.73% 2.68%
Random House 1.20% 0.49%
Viz 0.97% 0.36%
Eaglemoss 0.77% 0.18%
Other 8.01% 5.13%
After October's thousand new releases, the amount of new material dropped in November. But even as the number of new graphic novels released was essentially unchanged from last November, the number of new comics released ballooned, from 406 last November to 499. The number of new items shipped by each publisher in the month:

PUBLISHER Comics shipped Graphic Novels shipped Magazines shipped Total shipped
DC 95 29 0 124
Marvel 76 37 0 113
Image 74 13 0 87
IDW 46 27 0 73
Dark Horse 36 27 0 63
Boom 41 6 0 47
Dynamite 33 10 0 43
Viz 0 31 0 31
Random House 4 24 0 28
Eaglemoss 0 0 7 7
Other 94 97 25 216
TOTAL 499 301 32 832

Marvel's Amazing Spider-Man #9 took the top slot in a month in which every item in the Top 10 was priced at $3.99 or above. The Top Ten Comics:

1 Amazing Spider-Man #9 $4.99 Marvel
2 All-New Captain America #1 $3.99 Marvel
3 Batman #36 $3.99 DC
4 Amazing Spider-Man #10 $3.99 Marvel
5 Spider-Woman #1 $3.99 Marvel
6 Thor #2 $3.99 Marvel
7 Superior Iron Man #1 $3.99 Marvel
8 Avengers And X-Men: Axis #4 $3.99 Marvel
9 Avengers And X-Men: Axis #5 $3.99 Marvel
10 Justice League #36 $3.99 DC

As mentioned above, Walking Dead Vol. 22: A New Beginning led the Top Ten Graphic Novels:
1 The Walking Dead Vol. 22: A New Beginning $14.99 Image
2 Teen Titans: Earth One Volume 1 HC $22.99 DC
3 Saga Deluxe Edition Volume 1 HC $49.99 Image
4 The Wicked & The Divine Vol. 1: The Faust Act $9.99 Image
5 Saga Volume 1 $9.99 Image
6 Serenity: Leaves On Wind HC $19.99 Dark Horse
7 Avatar: The Last Airbender Vol. 9: Rift Part 3 $10.99 Dark Horse
8 Batman Eternal Volume 1 $39.99 DC
9 The Wake HC $24.99 DC
10 Deadpool Volume 6: Original Sin $17.99 Marvel

Year-to-date sales for the market reached nearly $497 million with this month's report, meaning only $21 million needed to be shipped in December in order for 2014 to beat 2013. That mark was likely met this week, and Comichron now projects that the sales for the year will land around $542 million, up a little less than 5% over 2013.

Look for the full estimates to appear on Monday.
John Jackson Miller has tracked the comics industry for more than 20 years, including a decade editing the industry's retail trade magazine; he is the author of several guides to comics, as well as more than a hundred comic books for various franchises. He is the author of several novels including Star Wars: Kenobi, Star Wars: A New Dawn, and the upcoming Star Trek: The Next Generation - Takedown. Visit his fiction site at And be sure to follow Comichron on Twitter and Facebook.
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Anthony said...

DC moved a whopping 124 books(Marvel moved 113) yet they are soooo far behind their competition! DC also is far behind in market and unit shared compared to November 2010 before the reboot! Oh, yes the Pu52 flops hard despite all the lies! The numbers show it for what it is! Rejoice friends!

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