In the comics medium 2016 was a great and successful year for DC Comics. Bruce Wayne finally returned to the mantle of Batman that James Gordon had been occupying through 2015. Brian Azzarello & Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight III: The Master Race continued to plug along, in addition was Miller’s prequel to the beloved Dark Knight Returns – Dark Knight Returns: The Last Crusade. Scott Snyder teamed up with John Romita Jr. for the new All-Star Batman series the Justice League vs. Suicide Squad crossover and much more. However, the real kicker was DC’s new event and re-branding.
In May DC kicked off with Rebirth that brought in new #1 issues and going back to the original numbering of Action Comics and Detective Comics before the New 52 that ended at #956 and #933 respectively. Rebirth bridged Pre-52 to the New 52, using elements of both that worked and discarding elements that did not work. In addition, The Watchmen are now part of this new DC universe and continuity. New creative teams and new titles and runs kicked off like Batgirl and the Birds of Prey, New Super Man which focuses on a Chinese hero, Superwoman which focuses on a Lana Lang with superpowers, Trinity, Hal Jordan & The Green Lantern Corps, Blue Beetle, returning Terry McGinnis to Batman Beyond and Super Sons which focuses on the sons of Superman & Batman.
Prices went up but titles also became bi-monthly. Due to this bi-monthly platform and forgoing hardcover trades for soft trade papers backs, the trades are coming out sooner than under the New 52 line. The Rebirth line sold well over 2.3 million comics for the year, that’s just the Rebirth title alone, not counting the new #1’s coming afterwards. That’s an average of 124k sales per issue, with highest the selling issue being DC Universe Rebirth selling over 305k copies and the lowest being Titans Rebirth selling over 72k. And so far the Rebirth series is getting nothing but love by critics and fans.
Out of the twelve months of the year DC Comics had the number one best selling comic for eight of those months as follows…
February – The Dark Knight III: The Master Race #3
March – Batman #50
May – DC Universe Rebirth #1
July – Justice League #1
August – Harley Quinn #1
September – Batman #6
November – Batman #10
December – Justice League vs. Suicide Squad
Harley Quinn being the best selling single issue of the entire year selling over 366k copies, placing itself at the number three spot for the year.
DC hardly did a lot of damage in the Trade Paperback market. Grant Morrison’s finally realized Wonder Woman: Earth-One opened to mixed, but generally favorable reviews at the #13 spot of the year with over 20k copies sold. Preacher Book One at the #11 spot also selling over 20k copies, this is most likely due to the premiere of the televisions series back in May. Finally, Batman: The Killing Joke was #2 for the entire year, selling over 44k copies, which is 27% up from sales of the book prior in 2015. Similar to Preacher, this is may be partly due to The Killing Joke animated movie release back in August.
DC’s overall market share of units sold topped out at 32.19% for 2016, coming in second place. This was above the 27.34% share of the market they had in 2015. DC Comics’ market share of overall dollars topped out at 29.84% for the year, second place again, which is above the 25.75% share of the market they held back in 2015 as well. Overall, nothing but growth for DC Comics. In fact, the months of July, August & September were great as they were #1
July – 40.96% overall market share of units/35.36% overall share of dollars
August 44.59% overall market share of units/39.27% overall market share of dollars
September 43.45% overall market share of units/36.53% overall market share of dollars
Check back with us and we will look more into other ventures of DC Comics for the year of 2016. Feel free to leave any comments, and we will respond promptly. We would love to hear from you. And thank you for reading The Comic Scene of 2016 in Review (DC) here at The Chico Comics Page. We appreciate your viewer-ship and invite you to come back soon. We post most everyday.