For the first time since before the New 52 relaunch in September 2011, Wonder Woman has dropped below 40,000 units sold. Wonder Woman’s been in the 40,000s for the past nine months, and while 40,000 is a completely arbitrary number, falling under it feels sort of sad. The higher sales were really fun for a change, but Wonder Woman keeps creeping every closely to its historical average. In February 2013, Wonder Woman #17 was in 54th place on the charts with 39,110 copies sold, a drop of 2.5% from last month. Here are the numbers for the issue, and the five issues previous:
NOTE: The average sales total is based on all of the available sales data, which currently comprises every issue of the series since September 1996, for 190 issues in total. The average rank isn’t given because rank is dependent on what other books came out that month, and that’s such a variable that an average really wouldn’t mean anything.
There was some good news in the February sales, though: Wonder Woman is still doing well compared to its fellow DC titles. It was the 21st best DC book for the month, up three spots from January. In terms of percentage lost, 18 of DC’s Top 25 books had worse months than Wonder Woman, and the 6 that were better benefited from crossovers, big finales, and/or new creative teams. Wonder Woman had NONE of those and still lost only 2.5%. Several titles slid down the charts after a crossover had boosted their sales in months previous, but several normal, non-crossover recovering titles fell in the 5-6% range. Wonder Woman is falling steadily, but still not falling as bad as everyone else. For a book with no crossovers, creative changes, or other promotions, it’s having a strong run.
Also, while Wonder Woman #17 dropped 3 spots on the sales charts from last months, there were SIX new books that premiered ahead of it, some of them with more than one issue in February! Wonder Woman should be much further down, but because it’s holding steady relative to other books, it’s been handling the recent influx of new titles well.
However, looking at the numbers historically, things aren’t great. Wonder Woman is creeping ever closer to its historical average, and the comparison to the last Wonder Woman #17 doesn’t look good either. Exactly five years ago, in February 2008, Gail Simone had taken over the recently relaunched Wonder Woman and Wonder Woman #17 sold 41,992 copies. That’s almost 3000 more copies than the current series, plus the market was weaker then too. The old comic was doing better in a poor market than the current comic is doing in a fairly strong market. Though to be fair, the old comic had benefitted from a sales increase just a few months previous when Simone came on the book. The current comic’s had the same creative team since the last relaunch.
Overall, Wonder Woman is doing well relative to other books, and particularly well considering it’s not benefitted from any sort of crossovers, promotions, or other stunts, but the sales are still dropping. It has yet to level off, and it doesn’t really look like it will any time soon. Without anything special to boost the sales, Wonder Woman will probably continue to drift down the charts.
Prediction For Next Month: I was only off by 210 issues with my last prediction, which is not too shabby compared to my recent string of terrible estimations. I think that retailers are still adjusting to the influx of Marvel NOW! titles, and that books further down the charts will be affected, so I predict a drop of about 2.7% for sales of roughly 38,050. Check back next month to see how I did!