Saturday, June 20, 2009

Titans Sales Watch: May

Sales on TITANS and TEEN TITANS are slowly eroding peice by piece, month by month. I'm re-posting DeTroyes' excellent "Titans Sales Watch" analysis (thanks, DeTroyes!) from ComicBloc:

May sales figures have been posted, so I guess that means its time again to bore everyone with numbers and statistics.

Here is the raw data for May 2009, courtesy of ICv2:


Issue # / Release Month / Year / # Units Sold / +/- Previous Month

Titans (Ongoing)
#13 May 2009 34,343 -1,671

Teen Titans (Ongoing)
#71 May 2009 30,376 -5,036

Tiny Titans (Ongoing)
#16 May 2009 8,844 -363

Vigilante (Ongoing)
#6 May 2009 18,877 -2,413

Superman/Batman (Ongoing)
#60 May 2009 39,531 N/A w/The Justice Titans


Titans - Titans managed to hold on to the top spot, but it's drop-off was pretty bad. That's rather disheartening, since it was starting to level off in the months leading up to "Deathtrap". I'd say Titans #14 is probably going to be not much better, but Titans #15 will be a shot in the arm due to its connection with Blackest Night (especially considering the number of Titans fans who seem genuinely pumped for BN:T). After that, no idea. A lot will depend on who they ultimately give the title to as the permanent writer; if its another unknown like Felicia Henderson, then the title may be toast.

Teen Titans - Huge, huge drop-off. Several factors would be my guess: people just aren't interested in the "new" new-new-new line-up, the loss of Sean McKeever, and the failure for the teen team to be anything more than just walk-ons for "Deathtrap" come immediately to mind. And with fill-in writers for the next several months and a complete unknown as the new ongoing writer, I just don't see how TT can pull out of its dive anymore - and what's more, I think DC knows it. Further evidence, I think, that DC is just putting this title on "holding pattern" status and gearing up for some kind of big relaunch next year.

Vigilante - Sorry guys, but its toast. If "Deathtrap" couldn't get it to stay above 20k on the very last issue of the crossover, then nothing will. Marv Wolfman might be able to string it along for a few more months, but he'll be trying to outrun the devil in doing so. My guess is, the title will survive long enough to get one or perhaps two TPBs, then they'll pull the plug on the monthly and maybe make it a back-up feature somewhere.

BTW, this is probably a good point to recap the sales figures for "Deathtrap":

Deathtrap Prologue: Teen Titans Annual 2009 #1 - 32,525
Deathtrap, Pt. I: Titans #12 - 36,014
Deathtrap, Pt. II: Vigilante #5 - 21,290
Deathtrap, Pt. III: Teen Titans #70 - 35,412
Deathtrap, Pt. IV: Titans #13 - 34,343
Deathtrap, Pt. V: Vigilante #6 - 18,877

I'd say that was evidence for some serious disinterest in this crossover. Vigilante #6, which was suppose to be the climax of the crossover, SHOULD have carried numbers comparable to the other titles. Instead, no one seemed interested in the outcome, and the sales numbers showed it.

(BTW, unless people want me to continue with it, I plan to drop coverage of Vigilante with next month's sales figures, as the title will then be moving away from interaction with the Titans)

Superman/Batman - Included for the Justice Titans. This was actually the biggest selling Titans-related title for the month of May.

Tiny Titans - A negligable drop-off. This one is doing just fine.



That's it for this month.



  • At 6:59 PM, Anonymous Diane Brendan said…

    Am I reading that correctly? Teen Titans lost 5,000 readers last month? If that doesn't get DC to take notice about how they've screwed these books up, I don't know what will.

  • At 12:50 PM, Anonymous Ravenloft said…

    5,000 readers in one month? Considering that half the young people today won't read comic books, and a lot of the older generation of fans are growing tired of what DC's doing to the series and leaving it, this bodes not well. If the older generation loses interest, who's going to convince today's MTV brainwashed children to put down the remote and pick up some real entertainment. From a demographic point of view, if that trend were to continue with the addition of 10-30 less readers, at what is it...$3.50-$6.00 an issue; we're talking huge loss in profit margins!!!!

  • At 4:57 PM, Anonymous Morgan said…

    You're not reading it entirely correct. One copy doesn't equal one reader. These numbers come from estimates sold to direct market retailers. There weren't 5K readers who walked away from Teen Titans; there were 5K fewer copies that retailers put on their shelves.

    I find the sales numbers to be completely useless. Largely because they turn discussions about characters like Superman and Batman into accounting classes, but also because fans can read any agenda they want into them. If J. Jonah Jameson and Aunt May don't appear in Amazing Spider-Man for a few months and sales drift downward, I can argue it's because of their absence. Or they're dropping because Peter hasn't beaten up Norman Osborn in awhile. And I couldn't be proven wrong.

    Hazarding a guess as to why Teen Titans had such a steep drop, it might have been due to Sean McKeever's exit. Or because it was a post-crossover issue. If you look at the recent attrition, the numbers likely would have landed here anyway if "Deathtrap" hadn't propped them up for a couple months. More likely the latter, but maybe a bit of both.

  • At 6:58 PM, Anonymous Ravenloft said…

    Well, 95% of all statistics are made up.

  • At 7:06 PM, Anonymous Morgan said…

    Forfty percent of all people know that.

  • At 10:49 AM, Anonymous Ravenloft said…

    Therein lies the real question. If 95% of all statistics are made up, then is it really 40% of all people who know that?


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