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Has The New 52 Paid Off For DC Comics? Options
BurningDoom
Posted: Saturday, January 12, 2013 9:31:07 AM

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Has The New 52 paid off for DC Comics?

Are they still pulling in the number of sales they were over a year ago when this all started? Or has the initial shock-value worn off? Are these new characters and new universe establishing themselves in the minds of fans? Have the changes been worth it?

If you are enjoying The New 52, what books are you reading and enjoying? What about it do you think has been done right?

To answer the sales question, here are the numbers from the first month of DC's New 52 compared to last October's sales (the last month I can find with exact numbers) and compared to 2006 sales:

09/2006: Batman #657 -- 91,357
09/2006: Action Comics #843 -- 56,084
09/2006: Green Lantern #13 -- 78,101
09/2006: Justice League #2 -- 143,412

09/2011: Batman #1 -- 188,420
09/2011: Action Comics #1 -- 182,748
09/2011: Green Lantern #1 -- 141,682
08/2011: Justice League #1 -- 185,776

10/2012: Batman #13 -- 148,305
10/2012: Action Comics #13 -- 67,241
10/2012: Green Lantern #13 -- 91,814
10/2012: Justice League #13 -- 117,752

Obviously the first month of New 52 has easily the highest numbers there. Which isn't surprising, as the shock-factor of DC Comics changing their entire universe is bound to bring in all kinds of readers, shock-value always has in comic books.

But if you compare the number from October of last year to September of 2006, you can see that while the number are different on each book, as a whole they're in about the same ballpark range.

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teh_longinator
Posted: Saturday, January 12, 2013 12:37:26 PM

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I think it went exactly as they planned. A huge increase in sales for a short burst, then settled down to just over what they were doing before the change.

Do I agree it was necessary? Not really. But hey, it is what it is.

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LordMikel
Posted: Saturday, January 12, 2013 1:56:07 PM
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Looking at the numbers, I think it very much helped Batman. That's a 50% increase from 2006. But Batman was also not rebooted (Or whatever the catch phrase they were using).

Justice League looks to have come way down in numbers, but we are comparing it to an issue #2 in 2006, might not be a fair comparison.

About a 20% increase for sales with Action Comics. Superman was rebooted.

Green Lantern, also not rebooted is boasting slightly less than a 20% increase. Also considering it stars Sinestro as Green Lantern.

I think they are still getting people talking about it, and I think they do have an increase in sales. I would say overall, it has been a plus.
Grwurz
Posted: Monday, January 14, 2013 2:59:07 AM

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I think DC definitely got what they wanted. A more telling comparison would be to compare the reboot to October 2010. Since that would have probably been around the time that DC would have started kicking around the idea doing something like the new 52.

Sales #'s October 2010:

Justice League of America 50: 59,686
Action Comics 894: 42,291
Green Lantern 58: 81,626
There was no Batman issue released that month (unless I somehow missed it) but in November 2010 Batman #704 sold 65,212

These numbers would point to a huge increase in sales over 2010, particularly for Batman and the Justice League which are selling more than twice as well as they were in 2010. Hell, even Superman is selling more than 50% more books than he was in 2010.

So, as far as DC is concerned, it's a huge win.



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Grwurz
Posted: Monday, January 14, 2013 3:01:15 AM

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Oh, in case anyone was wondering where I got the sales numbers from:

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4saken1
Posted: Monday, January 14, 2013 9:19:39 AM

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Another thing to look at is how many ongoing titles they had before New 52 as opposed to how many they have now......

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Ditkolad
Posted: Monday, January 14, 2013 10:07:49 AM

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4saken1 wrote:
Another thing to look at is how many ongoing titles they had before New 52 as opposed to how many they have now......


Add to that it is sustaining during a time when print media is DYING.

Q: Do the numbers quoted here have digital sales as well?
Grwurz
Posted: Monday, January 14, 2013 11:43:11 AM

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Ditkolad wrote:
4saken1 wrote:
Another thing to look at is how many ongoing titles they had before New 52 as opposed to how many they have now......


Add to that it is sustaining during a time when print media is DYING.

Q: Do the numbers quoted here have digital sales as well?


No, the digital numbers, Newsstand numbers, and international numbers are not included. These are direct market sales numbers only.



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ukblueky
Posted: Monday, January 14, 2013 5:51:37 PM

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I would call it a win for DC.Of course their idea of a win is completely different than mine.They are looking at the money aspect, which they are in the business of making money so its only fair.I look at it from a fans perspective.It made DC comics more entertaining.Most of the titles I read now are the same titles I read before the relaunch.I traded Red Robin for Nightwing, which by the way has been outstanding since issue 1.
Titles I read before the relaunch.
Batman,Detective Comics, Flash, Red Robin, Green Lantern, Green Lantern Corps
Titles I currently read post relaunch
Batman, Detective Comics, Aquaman, Justice League, Nightwing, Teen Titans, Red Hood and the Outlaws, Flash

I am dropping both Red Hood and Teen Titans after the Death Of The Family story arc.Both of these titles started off great but have since declined greatly.Red Hood has a chance of pulling me back in but I've lost all interest in the Titans book.
My suprise picks would have to be Aquaman and Nightwing.The New 52 has been great for them.Of course once Johns leaves Aquaman we will see if DC puts another top creator on the book or just lets it slip away.
Another pleasant suprise of the New 52, for me at least, has been the Shazaam back up story.I have never been a fan of the character but I am now interested in him.Wish he would get his own title.



CCComics
Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2013 4:54:57 PM
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How could it not be considered a success? DC wanted to generate more sales and they did. Tons of sellouts and reprints (8 or more I believe of Justice League #1). Plus if you look at those numbers, while it may not seem like a huge boost, the comic reading market isn't in the millions. As LordMikel pointed out, even a 20% sales increase can be considered a success. Also, DC wanted to bring in new readers and they did, including many longtime Marvel devotees who wanted to give the New52 a try and stuck with it. And if Marvel decided to copy DC with their own reboot, something must have been done right.

Sure creative teams leave and some of the sales figures drop off and books get canceled, but that's the case with pretty much every comic book published by the big companies. There are a few exceptions like Walking Dead and Chew, but those were published in such small numbers in their infancy and now have TV shows (one current and one on the way) to promote growth.

I'm pretty sure Iron Man became hot with the non-comic buying public as did the Avengers with the success of the films, and who knows what will happen with the new Superman movie, especially if they use elements from the New52 in it. The costume already is more like the his New52 one than his original one.

And hey, we're still talking about it now so I say a TOTAL success.

Grwurz
Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2013 9:00:54 PM

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CCComics wrote:
How could it not be considered a success? DC wanted to generate more sales and they did. Tons of sellouts and reprints (8 or more I believe of Justice League #1). Plus if you look at those numbers, while it may not seem like a huge boost, the comic reading market isn't in the millions. As LordMikel pointed out, even a 20% sales increase can be considered a success. Also, DC wanted to bring in new readers and they did, including many longtime Marvel devotees who wanted to give the New52 a try and stuck with it. And if Marvel decided to copy DC with their own reboot, something must have been done right.

Sure creative teams leave and some of the sales figures drop off and books get canceled, but that's the case with pretty much every comic book published by the big companies. There are a few exceptions like Walking Dead and Chew, but those were published in such small numbers in their infancy and now have TV shows (one current and one on the way) to promote growth.

I'm pretty sure Iron Man became hot with the non-comic buying public as did the Avengers with the success of the films, and who knows what will happen with the new Superman movie, especially if they use elements from the New52 in it. The costume already is more like the his New52 one than his original one.

And hey, we're still talking about it now so I say a TOTAL success.



I totally agree. Also, that's one thing that I didn't even consider. 2nd, 3rd, and 4th printings. Very few books went to a second print in the past and it seems that it happens almost every other issue in the new 52. (Although, it seems to be happening with every publisher these days and could possibly be due to shops ordering a little too conservatively).

Iron Man was considered a "B" level hero before the first movie and he is all over the place now.



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BurningDoom
Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2013 9:05:57 PM

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^ I saw 2nd and 3rd printings all the time. I have a comic news app on my MyYahoo page that had those headlines a lot. And I remember a thread where I mentioned it even, wondering if comics were selling better. Another member replied that while there are multiple printings nowadays, those print runs aren't nearly as large as they were in the 90s when they had multiple printings.

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CCComics
Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2013 9:26:18 PM
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No way I'd ever compare anything nowadays to the 90s. Back then kids could afford comics when they were priced at $1.00 or $1.25. Today, at $3.99 it's not really a kids' market. One comic costs more than a meal at some places. Also, while there were video games and dial up internet, such things weren't nearly as widespread as they are today. Kids have so many choices for entertainment I doubt many of them turn to comics. Most of the people who shop at my comic shop are grown-ups.

A similarity, though once again not with the numbers, the relaunch got lots of press and brought in people who normally didn't read comics to see what was going on. It also doesn't hurt that Superman and Batman and Wonder Woman are somewhat more iconic than the Marvel heroes simply due to their age and place in history and any kind of change to them would trigger more curiosity to outsiders than say Spider-Man or the X-Men or even Captain America who would probably be Marvel's closest thing to a legend.

I wonder what DC's digital sales and subscription figures are. They very well could be in the tens of thousands adding another 10 to 20 percent to the comparison.
Grwurz
Posted: Wednesday, January 16, 2013 4:36:09 PM

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CCComics wrote:
No way I'd ever compare anything nowadays to the 90s. Back then kids could afford comics when they were priced at $1.00 or $1.25. Today, at $3.99 it's not really a kids' market. One comic costs more than a meal at some places. Also, while there were video games and dial up internet, such things weren't nearly as widespread as they are today. Kids have so many choices for entertainment I doubt many of them turn to comics. Most of the people who shop at my comic shop are grown-ups.

A similarity, though once again not with the numbers, the relaunch got lots of press and brought in people who normally didn't read comics to see what was going on. It also doesn't hurt that Superman and Batman and Wonder Woman are somewhat more iconic than the Marvel heroes simply due to their age and place in history and any kind of change to them would trigger more curiosity to outsiders than say Spider-Man or the X-Men or even Captain America who would probably be Marvel's closest thing to a legend.

I wonder what DC's digital sales and subscription figures are. They very well could be in the tens of thousands adding another 10 to 20 percent to the comparison.


Digital sales aren't released publicly, but estimates I have seen have range anywhere from 10-30% of the print market.

Also, someone said that print is Dying earlier and I disagree in the case of comics. I think that the people who collect comics in the direct market are collectors. They may get some things in digital format, but they will still get the bulk of their comics fill from print books.

What will eventually go the way of the dinosaur are newsstand copies of books. The kind of person who goes into a bookstore (or wherever else you can get newsstand books these days) is exactly the kind of guy who will go digital.



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Come take a look!
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