Back in the nineties, it wasn’t uncommon for creator owned comics to bust open the charts, with the emergence of Image and Legend putting out titles regularly in the top ten. But the last hurrah for big creator-owned sales was probably the Cliffhanger imprint from Wildstorm that saw the likes of Battlechasers and Danger Girl for Wildstorm/Cliffhanger top the charts and reap the rewards.
In the last ten years, creator owned comics have taken a bit of a sales decline. While some name creators still venture into this territory, sales aren’t exactly great in comparison with the publisher-owned titles, even though they can pay better.
Mark Millar did a lot to break things open again, with his series Wanted – a relatively big seller and money maker, with all the lovely movie rights coming straight to the creators. Kick Ass has proved that it wasn’t a one-off and Chosen is going the same way. And Robert Kirkman has rejected Marvel in favour of Image, becoming a partner.
And books like Chew and Stuff Of Legend have proved that a well executed idea still has the potential to excite even without a massive multiverse of continuity behind it. But their numbers are still not exactly stellar.
I understand that Haunt, the new comic from Robert Kirkman and Todd McFarlane has received almost 60,000 preorders from comic book retailers. While it may not have the same impact that a Spawn or Youngblood 1 used to, with a first issue it is outselling the likes of Amazing Spider-Man these days. And it’s quite possible the book has been underordered, leading to more sales and a second printing.
Could it be that the possibilities are opening up again?
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