Spider-Man Comics Sales For May 2016

The return of certain redhead puts Amazing Spider-Man back into Top Ten spot, even as a number of its spin-off titles continue their steady decline.

Once again, thanks to ICv2 and Comichron, the sales estimates for the month of May 2016 based on Diamond Distributors Top 300 comics are now available. The Spider-Man line-up of titles continues to be one of Marvel’s best-selling group of comics collectively, as Marvel leads in market share yet again despite DC Comics capturing the top spot with DC Universe Rebirth #1. As far as franchises go, it does seem Spider-Man is still in pretty good shape.

The downside, however, is that comic book periodicals, including those from Marvel, are under-performing across the board. After all, We’re talking about a market in which only four of the top ten titles for the month had sales estimates over 100,000, and (as pointed out by The Outhousers) not a single title below the top ten sold more than 70,000.  In addition, sales of periodicals have dropped 20% from when compared to May of last year, although Comichron states it’s really closer to 15% given “Loot Crate copies were never part of the Direct Market.” In any case, what this all means is that even though Marvel continues to dominate in market share (in part due to publishing more titles at a higher price), their customer base appears to have gone way down. Furthermore, if this article from IGN is any indication, interest in Marvel and their “All-New, All-Different” line-up is severely waning while DC is on the rise with their “DC Rebirth” relaunch. And already, according to Bleeding Cool, the DC’s Rebirth are outperforming Marvel’s Civil War II.

So in light of all this, let’s see how well the various Spider-Man comics performed during 2016’s half-way mark:

Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #12, Age of Apocalypse Variant

10 — 73.35 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #12 — 74,963 (+11.14%)

October 2015: 2 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #1 — 245,873
October 2015: 10 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #2 — 111,322 (-54.7%)
November 2015: 14–Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #3 — 93,848 (-15.7%)
December 2015: 13 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #4 — 82,066 (-12.6%)
December 2015: 17 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #5 — 79,122 (-4.0%)
January 2016: 11 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #6 — 76,517 (-3.29%)
February 2016: 9 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #7 — 75,357 (-15.16%)
February 2016: 11 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #8 — 71,599 (-4.98%)
March 2016: 5 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #9 — 88,164 (+23.13%)
April 2016: 10 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #10 — 73,643 (-16.47%)
April 2016: 12 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #11 — 67,446 (-8.41%)

May 2015: 14 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 3 #18 — 88,338

Commentary: Like I told you folks during the Spider-Man Sales for April 2016 article, any time Mary Jane Watson appears on the cover of Amazing Spider-Man, the sales estimates go up. That’s one of the reasons for her return in Amazing Spider-Man #12, one of the reasons why she joined the supporting cast for Invincible Iron Man, and why (contrary to some speculation) Marvel’s will not likely to kill her off during Civil War II. Because MJ’s not just a pretty face, she’s a guaranteed draw for Spider-Man fans, even if seems like Marvel has done their level best to marginalize her importance to Spider-Man since “One More Day.” Of course, other reasons for issue #12’s bump could also be due to the presence of Iron Man, the All-New, All-Different Avengers (even though they don’t actually appear in the issue), and the pretty cool Age of Apocalypse variant. Even so, the new volume Amazing Spider-Man is still performing lower than the third volume was this time last year.

Spider-Man/Deadpool #5

15 — 62.45 — Spider-Man/Deadpool #5 — 63,821 (-1.7%)

January 2016: 3 — Spider-Man/Deadpool #1 — 133,813
February 2016: 12 — Spider-Man/Deadpool #2 — 69,801 (-47.83%)
March 2016: 11 — Spider-Man/Deadpool #3 — 68,003 (-2.57%)
April 2016: 15 — Spider-Man/Deadpool #4 — 64,931 (-4.51)

Commentary: Thus Spider-Man/Deadpool  continues cementing itself as the second best Spider-Man comic and best-selling Deadpool comic. Not to mention appearing to settle around a possible low 60K audience. However, the sales estimates for the next two issues should prove interesting since 1) The creative team of Joe Kelly and Ed McGuinness, who have been just as big a selling point for this series as Spider-Man and Deadpool have been, won’t be doing those two issues. And 2) Given that a certain devilish character made his presence known in Spider-Man/Deadpool #5, will this attract more readers in light of the apparent implications from that character’s appearance?

Spider-Gwen #8

25 — 48.61 — Spider-Gwen Vol. 2 #8 — 49,681 (-18.42%)

October 2015: 3 — Spider-Gwen Vol. 2 #1 — 197,103
November 2015: 25 — Spider-Gwen Vol. 2 #2 — 62,209 (-68.4%)
December 2015: 36 — Spider-Gwen Vol. 2 #3 — 54,844 (-11.83%)
January 2016: 29 — Spider-Gwen Vol. 2 #4 — 48,664 (-11.27%)
February 2016: 32 — Spider-Gwen Vol. 2 #5 — 43,796 (-11.11%)
March 2016: 32 — Spider-Gwen Vol. 2 #6 — 46,060 (+5.16%)
April 2016: 18 — Spider-Gwen Vol. 2 #7 — 60,900 (+32.21%)

May 2015: 15 – Spider-Gwen Vol. 1 #4 — 86,586

Commentary: The good news is Spider-Gwen, aside from being the top Spider-Man comic with a female lead, is still riding high from the Spider-Women crossover. Unfortunately, the title is already showing signs of dropping down to where it was before the crossover, and is doing so in spite of this issue also having multiple variant covers to boost dealer orders. Even so, Spider-Gwen being in the Top 25 is a very comfortable place.

Spider-Man #4

28 — 48.11 — Spider-Man #4 — 49,167 (-17.76%)

February 2016: 4 — Spider-Man #1 — 99,951
March 2016: 16 — Spider-Man #2 — 60,627 (-39.34%)
April 2016: 20 — Spider-Man #3 — 59,789 (-1.38%)

Commentary: Now you might think that the new Miles Morales/Spider-Man solo series being ranked 28 out of 300 comics is a great showing, and you’d be right. That said, the series has now dropped below 50K in the sales estimates within a span of four months, and I suspect it will fall even lower until we get to the Civil War II tie-ins. This isn’t to say the quality on the series has necessarily diminished, but I do wonder if these figures are reflective of a possible jumping-off of the Miles Morales bandwagon by the readers, especially if they’re convinced Marvel is giving Miles better treatment compared to Peter Parker.  Still, in light of the current comic book periodical market, Spider-Man is still doing okay.

Amazing Spdier-Man (2015) #1.5

38 — 41.01 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #1.5 — 41,907 (-5.1%)

December 2015: 24 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #1.1 — 66,092
January 2016: 20 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #1.2 — 56,674 (-14.2%)
February 2016: 27 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #1.3 — 47,892 (-15.49%)
March 2016: 38 — Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #1.4 — 44,160 (-7.79%)

Commentary: I think the placement of chapter five of “Amazing Grace” proves the following: the lack of a point-one issue for April made almost little difference in terms of its estimates and none when it came to its rank; titling the comic Amazing Spider-Man gives it a better chance than average; and finally, people definitely ordered this series without knowing exactly what they were getting themselves into. Because I imagine if they realized just how awful this story was, you’d be seeing the sales estimates a lot lower than this.

Unbelievable Gwenpool #2 Unbelievable Gwenpool #0

52 — 33.07 — Gwenpool #0 — 33,797 (-66.48%)
45 — 37.34 — Gwenpool #2– 38,162 (+12.91%)

April 2016: 6 — Gwenpool #1 — 100,852

Commentary: Looks like some degree of normalcy has returned. With both Unbelievable Gwenpool #2 and #0 being were they are this month, it’s now clear just how over-inflated the orders for Unbelievable Gwenpool #1 really were. Even so, for a character who started off as a joke variant for an issue of Spider-Gwen during “Deadpool” month (and who wound up having no connections to either Gwen Stacy or Deadpool whatsoever), for her comic to place around the top 50 is still impressive.

Silk #8

57 — 30.22 — Silk Vol. 2 #8 — 30,884 (-28.19%)

November 2015: 33 — Silk Vol. 2 #1 — 57,140
December 2015: 36 — Silk Vol. 2 #2 — 38,356 (-32.90%)
January 2016: 56 — Silk Vol. 2 #3 — 33,102 (-13.70%)
February 2016: 71 — Silk Vol. 2 #4 — 26,786 (-19.08%)
February 2016: 75 — Silk Vol. 2 #5 — 26,032 (-2.81%)
March 2016: 79 — Silk Vol. 2 #6 — 24,847 (-4.55%)
April 2016: 42 — Silk Vol. 2 #7 — 43,012 (+73.10%)

May 2015: 41 — Silk Vol. 1 #4 — 44,316

Commentary: Like Spider-Gwen, Silk is also still riding high from Spider-Women, but is also starting to dip back to where the sales estimates were before the crossover. Unlike Spider-Gwen, however, Silk is in a bit more of a delicate situation. Prior to Spider-Women, it was trending in the mid to low 20K range, and once Spider-Women is over, it could very well fall back to that position again. Which does place it as a top-tier “C-list” title. However, with Marvel making their announcement of another “Marvel NOW!” initiative post-Civil War II, I suspect see Cindy Moon’s title get a little creative reshuffling along with…

Spider-Woman #7

67 — 26.54 — Spider-Woman Vol. 6 #7 — 27,118 (-30.49%)

November 2015: 37 — Spider-Woman Vol. 6 #1 — 53,885
December 2015: 97 — Spider-Woman Vol. 6 #2 — 27,801 (-48.40%)
January 2016: 89 — Spider-Woman Vol. 6 #3 — 24,054 (-13.48%)
February 2016: 104 — Spider-Woman Vol. 6 #4 — 20,747 (-13.74%)
March 2016: 94 — Spider-Woman Vol. 6 #5 — 20,594 (-0.73%)
April 2016: 47 — Spider-Woman Vol. 6 #6 — 39,291 (+90.78%)

Commentary: Jessica Drew’s ongoing series may have also gotten a boost from the Spider-Women crossover, and I suspect she’ll get another once her Civil War II tie-ins are published starting in July.  Nevertheless, the title still was taking a beating in terms of the sales estimates prior to the crossover. Which makes me think that, as part of their Marvel NOW! post-Civil War II set-up, Marvel may decide to go for a Spider-Women ongoing, teaming up Jessica, Cindy, Spider-Gwen (who’d still have an ongoing), and perhaps another character. Granted, this is just mindless speculation on my part, but the Spider-Women crossover has been very well received, and it would make sense from a marketing standpoint to have all the Spider-Women have regular adventures together as a team.

Carnage #8

77 — 23.19 — Carnage #8 — 23,697 (-3.19%)

November 2015: 19 — Carnage #1 — 69,773
November 2015: 57 — Carnage #2 — 41,576 (-40.41%)
December 2015: 73 — Carnage #3 — 34,852 (-16.17%)
January 2016: 61 — Carnage #4 — 31,687 (-9.08%)
February 2016: 68 — Carnage #5 — 27,160 (-14.28%)
March 2016: 65 — Carnage #6 — 28,874 (+6.31%)
April 2016: 81 — Carnage #7 — 24,480 (-15.21%)

Commentary: Since the drop between Carnage #7 and #8 was just above 3%, this could be a sign of the series getting to a steady niche.  That is if having an estimated readership in the low 20K range can be considered a steady niche in today’s market.  At the rate things appear to be heading for Carnage, I can imagine another six or seven issues after Carnage #11, just enough to have one more trade paperback. That is, if it doesn’t see a relaunch with the upcoming Marvel NOW!

Spider-Man 2099 #10

80 — 22.54 — Spider-Man 2099 Vol. 3 #10 — 23,040 (-4.32%)

October 2015: 34 — Spider-Man 2099 Vol. 3 #1 — 57,719
October 2015: 51 — Spider-Man 2099 Vol. 3 #2 — 40,701 (-29.48%)
November 2015: 72 — Spider-Man 2099 Vol. 3 #3 — 34,969 (-14.08%)
December 2015: 77 — Spider-Man 2099 Vol. 3 #4 — 32,464 (-7.16%)
January 2016: 71 — Spider-Man 2099 Vol. 3 #5 — 28,489 (-12.24%)
February 2016: 72 — Spider-Man 2099 Vol. 3 #6 — 26,626 (-6.53%)
February 2016: 74 — Spider-Man 2099 Vol. 3 #7 — 26,163 (-1.73%)
March 2016: 68 — Spider-Man 2099 Vol. 3 #8 — 28,580 (+9.23%)
April 2016: 84 — Spider-Man 2099 Vol. 3 #9 — 24,081 (-15.74%)

Commentary: The third volume of Spider-Man 2099 is both literary and figuratively in almost the same position Carnage is in. It still has enough of a following, but I imagine based on the current trends, it will run with just enough issues to create a third trade paperback. or get relaunched again with Marvel NOW!  That being said, we do know based on the most recent solicits that Spider-Man 2099 will double ship with issues #13 and #14 for the month of August, and that both of those comics are Civil War II tie-ins, which are bound to get a bit of a bump for that month.

Spidey #6

84 — 21.33 — Spidey #6 — 21,794 (-5.2%)

December 2015: 25 — Spidey #1 — 65,503
January 2016: 55 — Spidey #2 — 33,585 (–48.73%)
February 2016: 65 — Spidey #3 — 28,161 (-16.15%)
April 2016: 79 — Spidey #4 — 24,553 (-12.81%)
April 2016: 88 — Spidey #5 — 22,991 (-6.36%)

Commentary: Based on these figures, and it being shy of the dreaded 20K mark, I’m not sure just how much longer this comic will be around. Granted, the Amazon.com pre-order for the second trade paperback of Spidey lists that it will collect issues #7 to #12, but the question is, will there be a Spidey #13? If Spidey does fall by the wayside, it won’t be much a surprise given how the series was marketed as being akin to Untold Stories of Spider-Man only for it to really be a series of non-continuity stories featuring a teenage Peter Parker.

Spider-Man & Silk: The (Spider)Fly Effect #3

95 — 19.52 — Amazing Spider-Man and Silk: The (Spider)Fly Effect #3 — 19,949 (-10.06%)

March 2016: 63 — Amazing Spider-Man and Silk: The (Spider)Fly Effect #1 — 30,806
April 2016: 93 — Amazing Spider-Man and Silk: The (Spider)Fly Effect #2 — 22,182 (-27.99%)

Commentary: Not much of a shock to see a miniseries which is reprinting an exclusive Marvel Unlimited digital comic to fall below 20K. That its managed to stay within the top 100 after three issues could be considered a minor victory. In any case, as I’ve alluded before, Marvel is probably more concerned over how well The (Spider)Fly Effect did in digital sales than in it did in print sales.

Venom: Space Knight #7

114 — 17.00 — Venom: Space Knight #7 — 17,370 (-2.92%)

November 2015: 29 — Venom: Space Knight #1 — 59,151
December 2015: 79 — Venom: Space Knight #2 — 32,210 (-45.55%)
January 2016: 79 — Venom: Space Knight #3 — 25,770 (-19.99%)
February 2016: 96 — Venom: Space Knight #4 — 21,545 (-16.39%)
March 2016: 104 — Venom: Space Knight #5 — 18,807 (-12.70%)
April 2016: 116 — Venom: Space Knight #6 — 17,894 (-4.85%)

Commentary: It does look as though Venom: Space Knight is starting to level off, but it also seems too little, too late. Because I’ll be very surprised if the series lasts beyond issue #12 at the rate it sales estimates are going. That said, I suspect if the series does get cancelled, there will be a new Venom ongoing series as part of the new Marvel NOW! post-Civil War II line-up. Perhaps one without Space Knight as a subtitle, no connections with The Guardians of the Galaxy, and something a lot more down to Earth. And speaking of series about to get canceled…

Web Warriors #7

123 — 16.09 — Web Warriors #7 — 16,445 (-5.35%)

November 2015: 26 — Web Warriors #1 — 62,096
December 2015: 80 — Web Warriors #2 — 31,614 (-49.08%)
January 2016: 84 — Web Warriors #3 — 25,407 (-19.63%)
February 2016: 107 — Web Warriors #4 — 20,198 (-20.50%)
March 2016: 107 — Web Warriors #5 — 18,621 (-7.80%)
April 2016: 125 — Web Warriors #6 — 17,376 (-6.68%)

Commentary: Given the release of Marvel’s comic book solicitations for September 2016, I definitely will have a lot more to say about Web Warriors when looking at those. Suffice to say, given the rapid decline of the sales estimates for this title, the writing was on the wall for a while.

That’s all the sales estimates analysis for this month. Until next time!