Friday, June 17, 2016

Poe Dameron Flies High in April

I am a month behind on the sales analysis of the Marvel Star Wars titles.  This analysis is for April 2016 books.

The Comics Chronicles released the April 2016 estimated sales.  As expected, with two new #1s, sales bounced back from the lows seen the last few months.

TitleIssueMonthly RankEstimated SalesLast Estimated SalesPercent Change
Poe Dameron12175,322N/AN/A
Star Wars Special: C-3PO14120,841N/AN/A
Star Wars18798,880107,058-7.64%
Darth Vader19876,96577,942-1.25%
Obi-Wan and Anakin43250,48653,636-5.87%

Both the Star Wars and Darth Vader titles set new lows.  Star Wars had a larger than normal drop and moved less than 100,000 units in April for the first time.  Darth Vader saw the normal month to month shedding that most comic books experience.  It is remarkable both titles are still top 10 titles when you consider the onslaught of new superhero #1s the industry has seen the past few months.  The Darth Vader title is ending with issue #25 and Marvel has not announced what title will be replacing it.

Obi-Wan and Anakin #4 saw a standard fourth issue drop.

The new ongoing Poe Dameron title debuted with 175,000+ units sold.  This is a far better debut than Kanan, the title it is replacing, which only sold around 108,000 units its first month.  The Force Awakens was a juggernaut at the theaters and with more Poe Dameron undoubtedly coming in future Star Wars movies, expect the Poe Dameron title to outperform Kanan.  It is unlikely this title will be as strong as the Star Wars and Darth Vader ongoing have proven to be, but it should easily be a top 25 title for the foreseeable future.

The much delayed Star Wars Special: C-3PO one-shot is the first original content one-shot from Marvel so there is nothing to compare it against.  I have to believe with sales well over 100,000 copies and the title placing at 4th on the charts, Marvel has to be pleased with the results.  We'll never know if Marvel had released this title on time closer to the movies run in theaters if it would have sold better or not.

The following table shows the total number of Star Wars units sold per month since January 2015 along with the average number of sales per issue.  Note this chart does not include reprints.

Month/YearTotal Estimated Sales# IssuesAverage Sale per Issue
January 2015985,9761985,976
February 2015526,4513175,484
March 2015596,2994149,075
April 2015537,8124134,453
May 2015324,8353108,278
June 2015396,931499,232
July 2015597,0235119,404
August 2015430,241586,048
September 2015551,8805110,376
October 2015953,2891095,329
November 20151,003,9548125,494
December 2015507,545684,591
January 2016465,698593,139
February 2016288,355472,088
March 2016355,554571,110
April 2016533,9765106,795

The average sale per issue would rank 5th on the top 300 chart for the month of April.  With the two #1s, this month saw a nice increase in average sales per issue over the past few months.  Star Wars trade paperbacks are selling well and reorders remain strong.

Take a look at the Star Wars Sales Estimate Chart and please read the blog posting Black Panther #1 year's bestseller at 253k copies; major publishers offer 12% fewer comics in 2016.

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