Where Do We Stand: December Comics and Graphic Novel Sales

stock: Police Comics 106, June, Digital Comics Museum

Batman #37I wish I had happier news to report, but unfortunately, representation of women in the top 10 comics and graphic novels lists in December was a sad state of affairs.

Not surprisingly, Marvel and DC ruled the top ten list this month with Marvel placing seven titles on the list. Topping Diamond’s list of single issue comics for December was Batman #37. Reaching the middle of its current and last arc before Convergence, the mystery driving the book continues to unravel.

SAGA_HC_01Also not a surprise, Saga Vol. 4 took top billing on the Diamond trade and graphic novel list. Reinforcing its mainstream success, Saga Vol. 4  appeared on the NYT bestseller list for three weeks. The hardcover Saga Deluxe Edition Vol. 1, with the big beautiful breastfeeding art, appeared on the NYT bestsellers list for four weeks in December. Overall, Image made a strong showing on the list taking five of the ten spots.

It was a sad month for female creators on the Diamond list. For single issues, none of the creative teams had women on them. None. Let that sink in for a moment. For trades and graphic novels, there are only two titles with women on the creative teams.


Part of making comics more accessible to girls and women, includes diversity in the cover art. For single issues, women were included on five covers, but on four of them they shared groups shots, where the male characters significantly outnumbered the female ones. Trades and graphic novels showed a more balanced view with four titles with women on the cover.

On the NYT list, Raina Telgemeier is still holding strong with both Sisters and Smile for the entire month and Drama for four weeks.

With a depressing end to 2014, let’s hope 2015 will be shinier.

Each month, Diamond Comics Distributors releases data on the top selling products from single issue comics, to graphic novels and trade paperbacks, to toys. Their sales data represents items sold through comic book shops.

I also include information from the New York Times’ weekly bestsellers’ list for graphic books. Their list comprises sales data for items sold through venues other than comic book shops, like bookstores. As it’s weekly, it won’t be an exact picture of all the days in the month, but it’s valuable way to see what fans who aren’t buying at comic shops are reading.

Brenda Noiseux

Brenda Noiseux

Community builder, artist, convention organizer, gamer, geek writer @womenoncomics, @Sidequest_BHP. Owner, Bittenby Studios