Diamond Announces Top Sales for January 2018

Marvel Beats DC by 0.5% on Dollar Sales
DC Beats Marvel by 2.25% on Unit Sales

The sales total for the “Big Two” were Once again very close in January. DC beat Marvel on unit sales by 2.25% even though Marvel shipped more items (127 for Marvel, 117 for DC).  Marvel edged DC in Dollar sales by a half percent, but Marvel has across-the-board higher prices than DC, so this is not surprising (DC still ships quite a few $2.99 titles).  It is clear the 2 industry giants are going toe-to-toe with one another and it’s really too close to call who will come out on top.  They’re very close but DC has historically been lower in both sales and units than Marvel by a decent amount, so the fact that DC has been closely nipping at the big dog’s heels for several months now has got to be troubling to the folks in the Marvel sales office especially since Marvel stumbled a bit with “Legacy”, it did not give them the clear win that DC got from their 2017 “Rebirth”.

Looking at year over year sales, we see periodical comic sales down and collected editions up, which tracks with the gut feel one gets from listening to readers talk about changing reading habit on internet comics boards.  There is no tracking/reporting of specific digital sales like Diamond provides for print, so it is hard to tell how much of the overall dip in sales is made up by people switching to digital, though my gut feel would be that digital likely makes up the difference and the overall consumer base for comics is about the same as last year.

On top comics and collected editions, Diamond has made a reporting change for 2018.  They now have 2 charts for each, showing the Top Comics and Collected Editions by BOTH unit sales and $ sales.  This makes it easy to see how Marvel’s higher prices affect the top listings.  Batman, a $2.99 book, came in at positions 3 & 4 on the top units charts, while those same issues placed 6 and 8 in dollar sales.  Marvel’s Avengers #675, a $4.99 book, was #6 in units but jumped to #3 on the dollar sales chart.  Walking Dead is back on both charts as the top Indie comic, with issue #175 at #5 in units and #4 in dollars.  Walking Dead is often the book that cracks the Marvel/DC stranglehold on the Comics Top 10.

Similarly, the gorgeous Gene Colan’s Tomb of Dracula Artist’s Edition, with a retail price of $125 (and, in my opinion, worth every penny) came in at #3 on the dollar sales chart but was not even in the top 10 on unit sales.

I’ll be watching the continuing battle between Marvel and DC throughout 2018.  Will Marvel be able to win back a clear position of dominance or will DC’s surge of popularity continue with fans as Action Comics hits issue #1000 and Brian Michael Bendis joins their stable of writers in a few months?   Time will tell…

– Bob Bretall (bob@comicspectrum.com)

Diamond’s Press Release:

(BALTIMORE, MD) — (February 9, 2018) —Batman teams with Rorschach to solve one mystery while the Comedian confronts Ozymandias and Lex Luthor in Geoff Johns and Gary Frank’s Doomsday Clock #3 from DC Entertainment, the best-selling comic book of January 2018 according to information provided by Diamond Comic Distributors, the world’s largest distributor of comics, graphic novels, and pop culture merchandise.

Marvel Comics was January’s top publisher in dollars with a 34.30% retailer dollar share and a 36.69% unit share. DC Entertainment was the month’s top publisher in units shipped with a 38.94% unit share and a 33.80% retailer dollar share. Image Comics was third with a 9.48% dollar share and an 8.23% unit share. In fourth was IDW Publishing with a 4.42% dollar share and a 3.51% unit share, followed by Dark Horse Comics with a 2.50% dollar share and a 1.27% unit share.

dollar-shareunit-share

DC Entertainment had six comics in January’s top ten. In addition to Doomsday Clock, Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo’s Dark Nights: Metal #5 ranked #2; Tom King and Travis Moore’s “The Origin of Bruce Wayne” in Batman #38 ranked #3; Tom King and Joëlle Jones’ “Superfriends” chapter three in Batman #39 ranked #4; Sean Murphy’s Batman: White Knight #4 ranked #7; and Scott Snyder, Tony Patrick, and Cully Hamner’s Batman and the Signal #1 ranked #10. Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard’s The Walking Dead #175 from Image Comics, the first chapter of “New World Order,” ranked #5. Marvel Comics had three titles in the top ten: Al Ewing, Mark Waid, Jim Zub, and Pepe Larraz’s Avengers #675, the first chapter of the weekly “No Surrender” event, ranked #6; Mike Costa, Dan Slott, Ryan Stegman, and Gerardo Sandoval’s Amazing Spider-Man & Venom: Venom Inc. Omega #1 ranked #8; and Ethan Sacks and Marco Checchetto’s Old Man Hawkeye #1 ranked #10. Among the premier publishers, IDW Publishing’s top book, Star Wars Adventures: Forces of Destiny: Leia, ranked #135, and Dark Horse Comics’ Sherlock Frankenstein and the Legion of Evil #4 was their top book for January at #179.

The adventures of Korra from Nickelodeon’s acclaimed animated series The Legend of Korra continue in Dark Horse Comics’ The Legend of Korra Volume 2: Turf Wars Part 2 by Michael Dante DiMartino and Irene Koh, the best-selling graphic novel of January. Image Comics had five titles in the top ten: Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie’s The Wicked and the Divine Volume 6: Imperial Phase Part 2 ranked #2, Jeff Lemire and Dustin Nguyen’s Descender Volume 5: Rise of the Robots ranked #4, Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips’ Kill or Be Killed Volume 3 ranked #5, Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples’ Saga Volume 8 ranked #6, and Vaughan and Staples’ Saga Volume 1 ranked #9. DC Entertainment had two titles in the top ten: Shea Fontana and Yancy Labat’s DC Super Hero Girls: Date With Disaster at #3 and Jimmy Palmiotti, Amanda Conner, John Timms, and Alex Sinclair’s Harley Quinn Volume 4: Surprise, Surprise at #10. Finally, Marvel Comics had two titles in the top ten: Ed Brisson and Mike Deodato’s Wolverine: Old Man Logan Volume 6: Days of Anger at #7; and Tom King, Gabriel Hernandez Walta, and Michael Walsh’s Vision at #8.

The Black Panther Little Golden Book from Random House Books for Young Readers was January’s best-selling book. Also in the top ten from Random House Books for Young Readers were DC Super Hero Girls: Harley Quinn at Super Hero High at #2 and DC Super Friends: The Flash Little Golden Book at #3. Capstone Press had five titles in the top ten, led by the Wonder Woman Is Respectful Picture Book at #4. Marvel Press’ Night Night, Groot Board Book ranked #5.

Bandai America’s Dragonball Super Dragon Stars Action Figures were the best-selling toy product of January and one of the Bandai’s three products among the month’s top ten. Mezco’s One:12 Collective: Marvel: X-Force Deadpool Action Figure, a Diamond exclusive, ranked #2 for the month. Diamond Select Toys had two products among the top ten: the Marvel Select: Thor Ragnarok: Gladiator Hulk Action Figure, based on Marvel Studios’ blockbuster film, ranked #5, the Marvel Select: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2: Drax and Baby Groot Figure ranked #7, and the Marvel Select: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2: Star-Lord and Rocket Raccoon Figure ranked #10. Funko’s POP! Dragonball Super: Gotenks Vinyl Figure, also a Diamond exclusive, ranked #6 for the month.

Dynamite Entertainment’s Vampirella Tarot Cards Set was January’s best-selling game product. Also of note, IDW Games’ Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shadows of the Past Board Game ranked #7 for the month.

TOP COMIC BOOK PUBLISHERS

PUBLISHER DOLLAR

SHARE

UNIT

SHARE

MARVEL COMICS 34.30% 36.69%
DC ENTERTAINMENT 33.80% 38.94%
IMAGE COMICS 9.48% 8.23%
IDW PUBLISHING 4.42% 3.51%
DARK HORSE COMICS 2.50% 1.27%
BOOM! STUDIOS 2.13% 1.74%
DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT 1.61% 2.25%
VIZ MEDIA 1.29% 0.44%
TITAN COMICS 0.96% 0.74%
ONI PRESS INC. 0.89% 0.48%
OTHER NON-TOP 10 8.63% 5.71%

 COMPARATIVE SALES STATISTICS

  DOLLARS UNITS
JANUARY 2018 VS. DECEMBER 2017
COMICS 6.08% 7.60%
GRAPHIC NOVELS -6.09% -11.86%
TOTAL COMICS/GN 2.13% 5.79%
TOYS 5.72% 12.29%
JANUARY 2018 VS. JANUARY 2017
COMICS -4.29% -11.40%
GRAPHIC NOVELS 3.96% 6.09%
TOTAL COMICS/GN -1.97% -10.26%
TOYS 24.19% 17.66%

NEW TITLES SHIPPED

PUBLISHER COMICS SHIPPED GRAPHIC NOVELS SHIPPED MAGAZINES SHIPPED TOTAL

SHIPPED

MARVEL COMICS 86 41 0 127
DC ENTERTAINMENT 89 28 0 117
IMAGE COMICS 62 18 0 80
IDW PUBLISHING 43 25 0 68
BOOM! STUDIOS 24 12 0 36
DARK HORSE COMICS 10 14 0 24
VIZ MEDIA 0 18 0 18
DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT 13 3 0 16
VALIANT ENTERTAINMENT 7 3 0 10
ONI PRESS 5 4 0 9
OTHER NON-TOP 10 139 130 25 294
TOTAL 392 255 25 672

TOP 10 COMIC BOOKS BY UNITS SHIPPED

RANK DESCRIPTION PRICE ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 DOOMSDAY CLOCK #3 $4.99 NOV170212-M DC
2 DARK NIGHTS METAL #5 $3.99 OCT170206-M DC
3 BATMAN #38 $2.99 NOV170231-M DC
4 BATMAN #39 $2.99 NOV170233-M DC
5 THE WALKING DEAD #175 (MR) $3.99 NOV170604-M IMA
6 AVENGERS #675 $4.99 OCT170809-M MAR
7 BATMAN: WHITE KNIGHT #4 $3.99 NOV170239-M DC
8 AMAZING SPIDER-MAN/VENOM: VENOM INC. OMEGA #1 $4.99 NOV170955-M MAR
9 BATMAN AND THE SIGNAL #1 $3.99 NOV170210-M DC
10 OLD MAN HAWKEYE #1 $3.99 NOV170921-M MAR

TOP 10 COMIC BOOKS BY DOLLARS INVOICED

RANK DESCRIPTION PRICE ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 DOOMSDAY CLOCK #3 $4.99 NOV170212-M DC
2 DARK NIGHTS METAL #5 $3.99 OCT170206-M DC
3 AVENGERS #675 $4.99 OCT170809-M MAR
4 THE WALKING DEAD #175 (MR) $3.99 NOV170604-M IMA
5 AMAZING SPIDER-MAN/VENOM: VENOM INC. OMEGA #1 $4.99 NOV170955-M MAR
6 BATMAN #38 $2.99 NOV170231-M DC
7 BATMAN: WHITE KNIGHT #4 $3.99 NOV170239-M DC
8 BATMAN #39 $2.99 NOV170233-M DC
9 BATMAN AND THE SIGNAL #1 $3.99 NOV170210-M DC
10 OLD MAN HAWKEYE #1 $3.99 NOV170921-M MAR

TOP 10 GRAPHIC NOVELS & TRADE PAPERBACKS BY UNITS SHIPPED

RANK DESCRIPTION PRICE ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 LEGEND OF KORRA VOLUME 2: TURF WARS PT 2 TP $10.99 SEP170087 DAR
2 THE WICKED & THE DIVINE VOLUME 6: IMPERIAL PHASE PART 2 TP (MR) $16.99 NOV170862 IMA
3 DC SUPER HERO GIRLS: DATE WITH DISASTER TP $9.99 NOV170216 DC
4 DESCENDER VOLUME 5: RISE OF THE ROBOTS TP $16.99 NOV170741 IMA
5 KILL OR BE KILLED VOLUME 3 TP (MR) $16.99 NOV170691-M IMA
6 SAGA VOLUME 8 TP (MR) $14.99 OCT170715 IMA
7 WOLVERINE: OLD MAN LOGAN VOL. 6: DAYS OF ANGER TP $17.99 NOV171057-M MAR
8 VISION HC $39.99 OCT170993 MAR
9 SAGA VOLUME 1 TP (MR) $9.99 AUG120491 IMA
10 HARLEY QUINN VOLUME 4: SURPRISE, SURPRISE TP $16.99 OCT170360 DC

TOP 10 GRAPHIC NOVELS & TRADE PAPERBACKS BY DOLLARS INVOICED

RANK DESCRIPTION PRICE ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 VISION HC $39.99 OCT170993 MAR
2 THE WICKED & THE DIVINE VOLUME 6: IMPERIAL PHASE PART 2 TP (MR) $16.99 NOV170862 IMA
3 GENE COLAN’S TOMB OF DRACULA ARTIST EDITION HC $125.00 AUG170497 IDW
4 SUPERMAN: THE GOLDEN AGE OMNIBUS VOLUME 5 HC $125.00 AUG170343 DC
5 MARVEL MASTERWORKS: DAREDEVIL VOLUME 12 HC $75.00 JUL171204-M MAR
6 MARVEL MASTERWORKS: SUB-MARINER VOLUME 8 HC $75.00 JUL171206-M MAR
7 LEGEND OF KORRA VOLUME 2: TURF WARS PT 2 TP $10.99 SEP170087 DAR
8 DESCENDER VOLUME 5: RISE OF THE ROBOTS TP $16.99 NOV170741 IMA
9 KILL OR BE KILLED VOLUME 3 TP (MR) $16.99 NOV170691-M IMA
10 DEADPOOL & CO. OMNIBUS HC $125.00 JUL171192 MAR

TOP 10 BOOKS BY UNITS SHIPPED

RANK DESCRIPTION PRICE ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 BLACK PANTHER LITTLE GOLDEN BOOK $4.99 NOV172179 RAN
2 DC SUPER HERO GIRLS: HARLEY QUINN AT SUPER HERO HIGH $13.99 NOV172187 RAN
3 DC SUPER FRIENDS: THE FLASH LITTLE GOLDEN BOOK $4.99 NOV172183 RAN
4 WONDER WOMAN IS RESPECTFUL PICTURE BOOK $4.95 NOV172176 CAP
5 NIGHT, NIGHT GROOT BOARD BOOK $7.99 NOV172194 HAC
6 BATMAN IS TRUSTWORTHY PICTURE BOOK $4.95 NOV172171 CAP
7 THE FLASH IS CARING PICTURE BOOK $4.95 NOV172172 CAP
8 SUPERMAN IS A GOOD CITIZEN PICTURE BOOK $4.95 NOV172174 CAP
9 JUSTICE LEAGUE: THE JOKER & HARLEY QUINNS JLA JAILHOUSE SC $5.95 NOV172192 CAP
10 THE SHADOW DOUBLE NOVEL VOLUME 125 SC $14.95 OCT172091 SAN

TOP 10 TOYS BY DOLLARS INVOICED

RANK DESCRIPTION ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 DRAGONBALL SUPER DRAGON STARS ACTION FIGURES DEC168933 BAN
2 ONE-12 COLLECTIVE: MARVEL: X-FORCE DEADPOOL ACTION FIGURE FEB178707 MEZ
3 OVERWATCH: D.VA 20-INCH STATUE AUG178473 BLI
4 BORUTO -NARUTO NEXT GENERATIONS: NARUTO FIGURE MAY178022 BAN
5 MARVEL SELECT: THOR RAGNAROK: GLADIATOR HULK FIGURE JUL172803 DST
6 POP! DRAGON BALL SUPER: GOTENKS VINYL FIGURE AUG178958 FUN
7 MARVEL SELECT: GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 2: DRAX & BABY GROOT ACTION FIGURE JAN172662 DST
8 DRAGONBALL Z MANGA DIMENSIONS: VEGITO FIGURE JAN178995 BAN
9 OVERWATCH: TRACER FIGMA MAY178050 GOO
10 MARVEL SELECT: GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 2: STAR-LORD & ROCKET FIGURE JAN172663 DST

TOP 10 GAMES BY DOLLARS INVOICED

RANK DESCRIPTION ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 VAMPIRELLA TAROT CARDS SET AUG171626 DE
2 RICK AND MORTY MONOPOLY DEC172927 USA
3 MAGIC THE GATHERING TCG: HOUR OF DEVASTATION BOOSTER PACKS APR173295 WIZ
4 MARVEL DICE MASTERS: MIGHTY THOR 90 GRAVITY FEED PACKS JUN173411 NEC
5 MAGIC THE GATHERING TCG: IXALAN BOOSTER PACKS JUN173398 WIZ
6 DC DICE MASTERS: BATMAN GRAVITY FEED PACKS SEP168742 NEC
7 TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES: SHADOWS OF THE PAST BOARD GAME APR160482 IDW
8 FANTASY FLIGHT GAMES STARTER OCT178573 ASM
9 MAGIC THE GATHERING TCG: HOUR OF DEVASTATION BUNDLE PACK APR173296 WIZ
10 DROPMIX MUSIC GAMING SYSTEM JUL178809 HAS

How does Diamond calculate the charts? It all starts at the comic book shop.

Data for Diamond’s sales charts — which includes the monthly market shares and all top product charts — are compiled by Diamond Comic Distributors from sales made to thousands of comic book specialty shops located in North America and around the world.  Additional sales made to online merchants and other specialty retailers may be included as well.

Unit and dollar market shares are calculated based upon orders for comic books, graphic novels, and magazines invoiced and shipped to Diamond customers during any given month, which comprises pre-orders, advance reorders, and reorders, minus any copies that are received back from a title marked as returnable. Please note that comics marked with an asterisk (*) have had their reported quantities reduced due to retailer returnability, and thus may rank lower on the charts than their actual sales would reflect.

The New Titles Count Chart includes all titles that were invoiced by Diamond to retailers for the first time during the month and is not the official solicited title count for the month. Variant edition comic books and graphic novels at the same price point count as a single SKU. Variant edition comic books, lenticular covers, digital combo packs, and graphic novels at different price points count as separate SKUs for each edition.

diamond-logo-color

ABOUT DIAMOND COMIC DISTRIBUTORS (DCD)—Diamond is at the nexus of comics and pop culture merchandise. Based in Baltimore, MD, DCD is the world’s largest distributor of English-language comic books and pop-culture related merchandise, servicing thousands of specialty retailers worldwide. For more information, visit Diamond on the web at www.diamondcomics.com.

Visit our website: http://www.comicspectrum.com/
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