Walking Dead #100 To Sell Over 300,000. The Best Selling Comic Of The Year?
Yesterday I reported that private polling of mine indicated that The Walking Dead #100 was about to smash through sales and become the best selling comic of July. I hedged my bet a little, but privately I was estimating sales of around 180,000 copies.
I was wrong, by a significant factor.
I have just been informed that preorders of the first print of The Walking Dead #100 have, so far, topped 300,000. Which would not only make it the best selling direct market comic of July, but the best selling direct market comic of the year, certainly as far as the first printing is to go by. It is possible that Avengers Vs X-Men may beat it but only after multiple prints, and a first print that effectively gave away most of its copies.
This is a truly astounding feat. It is no doubt helped by multiple covers, each featuring a big name artist, but even so, that means that each cover will outsell recent issues of the Walking Dead comic significantlyand, if counted separately, all five covers would be in the top twenty.
We still may not be at capacity of course. There were a million downloads of the first chapter of The Walking Dead game, and a TV audience of eight million. Who knows how many more people could be turned to the monthly comic experience...
We order Walking Dead graphic novels in huge amounts, but still can't seem to sell the monthly in any great amount (single figures).
In fact, every single new reader we've had as a result of the TV series has turned their nose up at the monthly reading experience, and they're more than happy to get their fix twice a year in GN form.
I'd imagine it's those mad American shops that will happily order hundreds of a title they know they can't sell, just to get their hands on every cover or every variant, that's caused this!
It makes me wonder if I should cut my orders. There will be no collectibility because of overproduction. There will be more supply than there is demand. But in the end, I will order this like I order every book. By what I think will sell in our stores. But it makes me wonder if we are all gambling a little too high on this compared to what regular monthly sales are.
I've never been a fan of the alternate cover scheme. History has shown it never leads to sustained sales growth - if anything it can provide a one month spike and sales immediately drop back into the normal pattern of decline the following month. But it appears that's what Kirkman and Image wanted so good for them.
That said, I find Walking Dead (like Bendis' Ultimate Spider-Man) reads fast even in trade. So I can't imagine the monthly experience being more than the blink of an eye and wonder who is buying the book this way.
This is a truly astounding feat. It is no doubt helped by multiple covers, each featuring a big name artist, but even so, that means that each cover will outsell recent issues of the Walking Dead comic significantly and, if counted separately, all five covers would be in the top twenty.
Rich, your math, etc is off.
There are EIGHT regular covers (Adlard Regular, Adlard Wraparound, Silvestri, Hitch, McFarlane, Ottley, Phillips, Quitely), plus the chromium cover (which won't roll into the combined total because it has a $10 cover price), and there's an retailer incentive cover as well , which also shouldn't count.
Assuming that the 300k is for all nine covers, that's about 35k each for the 8 covers, and 20k for the chromium. Even if it doesn't include the chromium, that's approximately 38k per cover. Either way, none of them would individually even be in the Top 50.
"That said, I find Walking Dead (like Bendis' Ultimate Spider-Man) reads fast even in trade. So I can't imagine the monthly experience being more than the blink of an eye and wonder who is buying the book this way. "
Kirkman is really good, like Dave Sim was in Cerebus, of having monthly cliffhangers that don't read like cliffhangers in collected form. I, personally, think TWD reads much better as a serial than in collection because of the suspense factor.
Jeez, why would orders be so huge for this? Isn't that like 10 times the number Walking Dead normal sells, if not more? I guess it's kind of cool that #100 would see a print run around 40 times great than #1 did. But I think a lot of retailers will be left with a lot of overstock on this one.