August 2005‘s top-seller was DC’s Justice #1, with Diamond first-month orders of more than 190,400 copies. Final orders including reorders brought the issue to 223,900 copies, making it the 14th best-selling comic book of the 2000s. (See the whole list here.) DC published six of the top ten titles in the month. Check out the sales chart for August 2005 here.
August 1995‘s top seller at Diamond Comic Distributors and Canada’s Multi-Book and Periodical, Spawn #35, almost certainly wasn’t the top-seller in the industry. Again, Marvel had stopped distributing its comics through all other distributors but Heroes World Distribution beginning with July, and Heroes World’s sales are not publicly known before September 1996. This was the last month that Capital City Distribution had DC comics — and while it didn’t have Marvels either, it polled its accounts to see what quantities of Marvels they were selling. Thus, Capital’s sales chart this month reflected its actual sales of DC and other publishers — and estimates of where Marvels would rank. Capital’s reports put Marvel’s Wolverine #93 in first place, projecting Spawn in fifth. Known average annual sales for Wolverine that year were at nearly 335,000 copies.
Capital also tried to estimate what the dollar shares were for the business based on its reports from retailers: they found Marvel with a 39% market share, versus 15% for DC and 14% for Image. It was only the second month for Marvel to self-distribute, and growing pains were already in evidence. “Is it possible,” asked Gerry Mattson of Comic Encounters in British Columbia, “to actually order from Heroes World without waiting on hold for two hours?” It would become an often-repeated refrain as 1995 turned to 1996.
Diamond’s top trade paperback was the Star Wars: Dark Empire II collection from Dark Horse. The average price of comics in Diamond’s Top 300 was $2.50, and the average comic book ordered within Diamond’s Top 300 cost $2.54. The most common cost of comics was $2.50.
August 1990‘s top seller at Diamond and Capital City was Todd McFarlane’s Spider-Man #3. Marvel sold 756,600 copies of the issue through all channels, including 98,300 copies on the newsstand and 642,000 copies in the Direct Market (including 151,900 through Capital). It’s almost certainly the best performance ever for a comic book with an upside-down logo!
Comichron founder John Jackson Miller has tracked the comics industry for more than 25 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 novels including Star Wars: Kenobi, Star Wars: A New Dawn, Star Trek: Discovery – The Enterprise War, and his latest release, Star Trek: Discovery – Die Standing. Read more about them at his fiction site.
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