Jupiter’s Legacy, The First Top Three Creator Owned Title Since… When Exactly?

jupJupiter’s Legacy #1 has sold out its print run at Diamond. It was placed third on the chart for the month of April, though it could be higher if Diamond’s 10% statistical discount for returnable comics is taking into account.

Mark Millar asks;

As far as I recall, there hasn’t been a creator-owned book charting this high since the 93-94 Image days. Have any creator-owned launches charted HIGHER than number 3 since Spawn, etc, began? There’s certainly nothing since the late 90s but I think it might actually go back all the way to the Jim, Todd and Rob days. Either way, we’re very pleased so thanks to everyone for their support and if the store was sold out when you went this weekend rest assured that a second printing and a new cover is on the way. #2 is out in June.

Well, let’s have a look. There is a statistical anomaly in the mid nineties when Marvel left and set up their own distribution system before that all collapsed and they returned to third party distribution. During which, in August 1995, Diamond’s second best selling comic of the month was Lady Death In Lingerie #1

Witchblade debuted in the top 3 in 1995 under that system as did DV8 in 1996. But after Marvel returned in mid 1997, did any creator owned comic debuted in the top 3?

Spawn is often there, Battle Chasers and Danger Girl saw subsequent, but not their debut issues, reach those heady heights. I’m guessing Spawn The Dark Ages #1 and Spawn The Undead #1 from 1999 don’t really count.

No, there’s just three. Ish. And all from Top Cow.

In December 1997, The Darkness #1 debuted at No 1 with around 350,000 sales. Co-created by Marc Silvestri who co-owns the owners Top Cow… does that count? Probably. Ish.

In July 1998, Fathom #1 created by Michael Turner debuted at No 1, with around 250,000 sales.

In July 1999, Top Cow’s Rising Stars by JMS and Ken Chu debuted at No 3 with around 100,000 sales.

And that’s it until Jupiter’s Legacy in 2013. So, which is next?

Although… hmm. I’m not sure if this counts. It is a creator owned debut title – in comics at least – from as late as 2000, that also gets the no 3 spot. Dark Tower Gunslinger Born, number 2 spot, with sales of around 170,000. And owned by Stephen King. If that counts, it’s the only such title that would count for the entire 2000s…