DC Comics Smashes Marvel Marketshare In October, Takes 51% Of Sales

Back in March this year, Marvel Comics had a 40% share of money spent on comics through Diamond Comic Distributors, and a 45% share of the number of comics sold. DC had only 27.62% and 31.5% share respectively.

Well what a change half a year can make. After taking Marvel on marketshare for the month of September, albeit only by half a percent in dollar marketshare, in October DC Comics has soared ahead, buoyed by sales of second prints from September’s issues, and from many of their October titles maintaining or surpassing their initial order numbers for September.

Which means in October DC Comics has 42.47% of dollars spent on comics, to Marvel’s 29.1% share, turning that half a point gap into thirteen and a half points. And on actual numbers of products sold, DC has taken 50.97% of sales to Marvel’s 20.29%.

Which means more than one in every two comics sold by Diamond in October was a DC comic.

And overall comics sales that were up in September continue to rise in October, by just under 7%. To a figure that is over 30% what is was October last last. That’s right folks, in one year, comics sales have risen by a third.

The last two months’ performance has seemingly done the impossible and turned the tanker right around, to the extent that in August, overall comics sales of the year were well below that of 2010 at the same point. Now they are above where 2010 was at this point.

It’s an incredible performance that can be laid at the feet of DC Comics, and specifically that they haven’t increased their sales at the expense of other publishers, rather everyone’s sales have either been maintained or are rising, as the DC promotional plan have brought in new readers or brought back lapsed readers – who have then gone on to try other non-DC comics.

Graphic novels have suffered however. They were down last month, they are down again, this time falling 11%, or a third compared to October last year.

Chartwise, DC have taken the top 6 selling books on Diamond’s lists, Justice League, Batman, Action Comics, Green Lantern, Flash and Detective Comics with the Marvel’s own relaunches of Hulk and X-Men butting into the top ten, along with the last issue of Fear Itself.

Here’s the data for October just issued by Diamond. It does not include UK sales.

TOP COMIC BOOK PUBLISHERS

PUBLISHER DOLLAR

SHARE

UNIT

SHARE

DC COMICS 42.47% 50.97%
MARVEL COMICS 29.10% 30.29%
IMAGE COMICS 4.49% 3.98%
DARK HORSE COMICS 4.44% 3.28%
IDW PUBLISHING 4.00% 2.97%
DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT 2.81% 2.42%
BOOM! STUDIOS 1.68% 1.02%
EAGLEMOSS PUBLICATIONS 1.28% 0.30%
AVATAR PRESS 0.98% 0.53%
VIZ MEDIA 0.84% 0.32%
OTHER NON-TOP 10 7.91% 3.92%

COMPARATIVE SALES STATISTICS

DOLLARS UNITS
OCTOBER 2011 VS. SEPTEMBER 2011
COMICS 6.78% 6.90%
GRAPHIC NOVELS -7.47% -11.07%
TOTAL COMICS/GN 2.67% 5.73%
OCTOBER 2011 VS. OCTOBER 2010
COMICS 24.37% 32.12%
GRAPHIC NOVELS -12.90% -30.75%
TOTAL COMICS/GN 11.93% 25.89%
YEAR-TO-DATE 2011 VS. YEAR-TO-DATE 2010
COMICS -0.23% 1.86%
GRAPHIC NOVELS -5.39% -12.07%
TOTAL COMICS/GN -1.93% 0.64%

TOP 10 COMIC BOOKS

RANK DESCRIPTION PRICE ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 JUSTICE LEAGUE #2 $3.99 AUG110160 DC
2 BATMAN #2 $2.99 AUG110186 DC
3 ACTION COMICS #2 $3.99 AUG110179 DC
4 GREEN LANTERN #2 $2.99 AUG110202 DC
5 FLASH #2 $2.99 AUG110167 DC
6 DETECTIVE COMICS #2 [*] $2.99 AUG110190 DC
7 INCREDIBLE HULK #1 $3.99 AUG110584 MAR
8 WOLVERINE AND THE X-MEN #1 $3.99 AUG110653 MAR
9 FEAR ITSELF #7 $4.99 AUG110568 MAR
10 SUPERMAN #2 [*] $2.99 AUG110182 DC

TOP 10 GRAPHIC NOVELS & TRADE PAPERBACKS

RANK DESCRIPTION PRICE ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 FLASHPOINT HC $22.99 AUG110244 DC
2 THE WALKING DEAD VOLUME 7 HC (MR) $34.99 AUG110454 IMA
3 BATMAN: ARKHAM CITY HC $22.99 JUN110266 DC
4 THE UNWRITTEN VOLUME 4: LEVIATHAN TP (MR) $14.99 JUL110296 DC
5 STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS: STRANGE

ALLIES TP

$7.99 JUN118158 DAR
6 AMERICAN VAMPIRE VOLUME 1 TP (MR) $19.99 JUL110284 DC
7 THE WALKING DEAD: SURVIVOR’S GUIDE TP $12.99 AUG110455 IMA
8 ALL-STAR SUPERMAN TP $29.99 JUL110247 DC
9 ALAN MOORE’S NEONOMICON TP (MR) $19.99 JUL110881 AVA
10 ULTIMATE COMICS SPIDER-MAN: DEATH OF SPIDER-MAN PREMIERE HC $24.99 AUG110700-M MAR

TOP 10 TOYS

RANK DESCRIPTION ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 THE WALKING DEAD COMIC SERIES 1 ACTION FIGURES MAY110543 TMP
2 THE WALKING DEAD SERIES 1: PREVIEWS EXCLUSIVE ZOMBIE ACTION FIGURE 2-PACK FEB118234 TMP
3 THANOS MUSEUM STATUE FEB111668 BOW
4 UNIVERSAL MONSTERS SELECT: FRANKENSTEIN FIGURE APR111706 DST
5 BACK TO THE FUTURE: TIME MACHINE CAR JUN098008 DST
6 UNIVERSAL MONSTERS SELECT: DRACULA FIGURE APR111705 DST
7 AME-COMI HEROINE SERIES 3 MINI FIGURES FEB110281 DC
8 BATMAN BLACK & WHITE STATUE: CLIFF CHIANG MAR110413 DC
9 MARVEL UNIVERSE ACTION FIGURES (ASST. 201105) AUG111777 KEN
10 MARVEL UNIVERSE ACTION FIGURES (ASST. 201106) AUG111778 KEN

TOP 10 GAMES

RANK DESCRIPTION ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 DC HEROCLIX: SUPERMAN BOOSTER BRICK JUL112183 NEC
2 MAGIC THE GATHERING TCG: INNISTRAD BOOSTER PACKS AUG112115 WIZ
3 HALO HEROCLIX: 10TH-ANNIVERSARY BOOSTER PACKS MAY118238 NEC
4 MAGIC THE GATHERING TCG: INNISTRAD FAT PACKS AUG112117 WIZ
5 MAGIC THE GATHERING TCG: AJANI VS. NICOL BOLAS

DUEL DECKS

AUG112114 WIZ
6 THE WALKING DEAD COMIC BOARD GAME JUL112185 Z-M
7 MAGIC THE GATHERING TCG: INNISTRAD INTRO DECKS AUG112118 WIZ
8 YU-GI-OH! TCG: LEGENDARY COLLECTION 2 JUN118254 KON
9 MAGIC THE GATHERING TCG: INNISTRAD EVENT DECKS AUG112116 WIZ
10 STAR TREK: FLEET CAPTAINS MINIATURES GAME MAY118042 NEC