The Top 100 Selling Graphic Novels For April 2004
This list comes from digging through sales figures, asking too many questions and using Diamond Comics information. The snotty comments in white are from deep in Cory's sick twisted little brain.
1 ULTIMATES VOL 2 HOMELAND SECURITY TP $17.99 MAR 8,535
Less than a month after issue #13, the issues involved in that story are available as a trade paperback. You would think that if people knew it was coming out, and how close it was to the individual issues that it would affect sales. It didn't. Both the individual issues and the trade paperback are selling quite well. As a review, I didn't care for this series, thinking it was just too...mean to the characters involved. The art was amazing, but the story struck me as a rehash of old stories with a lot of needless cruelty and sexual innuendo shoved in.
2 SUPERMAN/BATMAN PUBLIC ENEMIES HC $19.95 DC 7,820
This is the first 6 issues of the Superman/Batman series, and is probably where the Superman revamp started. A decent enough story, marred by an ending out of a crappy 80's action movie, it's still not worth buying as a hardcover. Wait for the trade if you missed the individual issues.
3 FABLES VOL 3 STORYBOOK LOVE TP (MR) $14.95 DC 6,478
Vertigo's big hit (along with Y, The Last Man) and probably the best traditional Vertigo comic being published. A new take on fairy tale characters, and while it also puts adult sensibilities in the story, it doesn't feel as forced as it does in Ultimates. Highly recommended.
4 HELLSING VOL 2 TP $13.95 DAR 6,384
5 ESSENTIAL TOMB O/DRACULA VOL 2 TP $16.99 MAR 5,025
Reprinting another 25 issues of the groundbreaking 70's horror series. Gene Colon's work always looked better in black and white, and Tom Palmer was by FAR the best inker for Colon's work. One of the best of the comic series of the 70's, it has aged VERY well and is just incredibly well done. Highly recommended.
6 BERSERK VOL 3 TP (MR) $13.95 DAR 4,531
7 ESSENTIAL DAREDEVIL VOL 2 TP $16.99 MAR 4,232
One of the goofier series from Marvel in the 60's. Anyone who says that Frank Miller (or Bendis's) series is going back to the basics on this character means they have no idea about the character. These are VERY goofy super-hero stories in the old Stan Lee manner, and are pretty much only good as nostalgia. Mildly recommended.
8 DARK DAYS TP (MR) $19.99 IDW 4,169
The Sequel to 30 Days of Night, a very well done vampire story. This one has some moments that don't work as well, but it is a very well done horror comic, with dark, moody art and is highly recommended.
9 HELLBOY VOL 1 SEED O/DESTRUCTION TP NEW PRT $17.95 DAR 4,122
More re-orders. A great comic with fantastic art, and the success couldn't happen to a better comic. If you haven't gotten this yet, you should and it is highly recommended.
10 RUROUNI KENSHIN VOL 4 GN $7.95 VIZ 3,950
11 MARVEL AGE RUNAWAYS VOL 1 PRIDE & JOY DIGEST TP $7.99 MAR 3,863
Highly recommended, and I have been recommending this as a regular comic. Now you can get the first 6 issues for $8. Go buy it!
12 SPIDER-MAN BLUE TP $14.99 MAR 3,785
Another of the Loeb/Sale stories retelling the background of the Marvel Heroes, this one telling the story of Spider-Man through a letter Peter Parker is recording for Gwen Stacy. At once nostalgic and modern, this team has been doing excellent work whenever they work together and this is no exception. It was good enough that I bought it as a hardcover, and as a trade paperback, it is highly recommended.
13 ITS A BIRD HC (MR) $24.95 DC 3,675
A graphic novel that is getting a lot of attention outside of comics, with the writer explaining why he turned down an assignment writing Superman. I did not buy it, as I have a lot of trouble dropping $25 on a original graphic novel, but I will definitely buy it as a soft-cover.
14 MARVEL AGE SPIDER-MAN VOL 1 DIGEST TP $5.99 MAR 3,635
Reprinting a bunch of the Marvel Age Spider-Man issues that has modern creative teams re-doing the early issues of Spider-Man. It's for younger readers, and I just see it as a waste of time.
15 JLA VOL 13 RULES O/ENGAGEMENT TP $12.95 DC 3,620
A trade of a JLA arc that I couldn't make it through. I doubt the collected trade will be any better.
16 BATMAN GOTHAM CENTRAL TP $9.95 DC 3,431
A great crime story set in Gotham city told through the eyes of Gotham's police department. I wish this comic sold better so that I knew it would be continue for a long time. Highly recommended.
17 RANMA 1/2 VOL 26 TP $9.95 VIZ 3,125
18 DH GOON ROUGH STUFF TP $12.95 DAR 2,842
19 MARVEL AGE SPIDER-GIRL VOL 1 DIGEST TP $7.99 MAR 2,835
Reprinting the first 6 or so issues of the long-running Marvel series. It is becoming more and more of a nostalgia trip as it is written and drawn in Marvel's 80's style, but it is still fun to read. And at this low price, it's a nice little trade to pick up and is mildly recommended.
20 WOLVERINE VOL 2 COYOTE CROSSING TP $11.99 MAR 2,811
The second story arc on the new Wolverine series, this story about the transport of illegal immigrants. Great art, great story and the best take on the character in decades, this comic is highly recommended.
21 MARVEL AGE SENTINEL VOL 1 SALVAGE DIGEST TP $7.99 MAR 2,552
Another of the smaller size trades from Marvel, this one being the first six issues of the canceled series "Sentinel". It is a story about a young boy who finds a deactivated Sentinel and...pretty much becomes a remake of "Iron Giant." It got some good notice when it started, but it always seemed way too derivative for me to get into. This is a good way to sample it, though, and for $8 you get 6 issues worth of comic.
22 NARUTO VOL 3 TP SHONEN J FORMAT $7.95 VIZ 2,536
23 SMALLVILLE TP $9.95 DC 2,520
24 SPIDER-MAN DEATH O/CAPTAIN STACY TP $12.99 MAR 2,497
Reprinting some of the Dr. Octopus stories from the late 60's, with Stan Lee and John Romita at their peak on the book. Must of the "shock" of the story has worn off, now that comics kill off characters all the time it doesn't seem like a big deal, but in the late 60's, that sort of thing just didn't happen. Mildly recommended for those who haven't read the story before.
25 SPIRIT ARCHIVES VOL 13 HC $49.95 DC 2,465
26 BATGIRL FISTS O/FURY TP $14.95 DC 2,458
27 CRIMINAL MACABRE CAL MCDONALD MYSTERY TP $14.95 DAR 2,450
From the writer of "30 Days Of Night", and a solid little occult mystery. Not really groundbreaking, but if you like horror stories, this is a solid read. Mildly recommended.
28 BATMAN IN WORLDS FINEST ARCHIVES VOL 2 HC $49.95 DC 2,411
Some of the very early Batman stories, but by this time in Batman's history, the pulp edge had worn off and it was very much a series for kids. A good example of Golden Age Batman stories and only for comics historians.
29 BLACK FOREST GN $9.95 IMA 2,356
30 24 HOUR COMICS VOL 1 TP $11.95 ABO 2,316
Scott McCloud started an experiment in the early 90's of an artist creating and entire 24-page comic in a 24-hour period. These are some of the best, including one drawn by Neil Gaiman. As an artistic experiment, it's a fascinating read, but not for people who want highly polished comics work.
31 FRUITS BASKET VOL 2 GN (Of 11) $9.99 TKP 2,269
32 RED TOKYO STORM WARNING TP (MR) $14.95 DC 2,253
Reprinting two of Warren Ellis's 3 issue mini-series, and they show that while it is an OK format for a style of short story, 96 pages is not enough to be a full trade paperback. The two stories don't really mesh well in one book, and this is really for completists only.
33 FULL METAL PANIC MANGA VOL 4 TP $9.99 ADV 2,191
34 HUMAN TARGET STRIKE ZONES TP (MR) $9.95 DC 2,183
DC is getting much more aggressive in their printing of trades for new series, and this one reprints the first few issues of the new Human Target series. It's not a must read, but it does use the concept well. Mildly recommended and perfect if you want to see if the series is one you would like to pick up.
35 AZUMANGA DAIOH MANGA VOL 4 TP $9.99 ADV 2,183
36 WITCHBLADE/DARKMINDS RETURN O/PARADOX TP $9.99 IMA 2,128
This comic is about 5 years too late, in my opinion. Both comics crossing over have had a huge loss of fan interest, and there doesn't seem to be any reason for there to be a crossover.
37 JLA ONE MILLION TP $19.95 DC 2,065
A new printing of the DC mini-series by Grant Morrison during his JLA days. It was a fascinating concept, and is one of the very few company crossover comics I enjoyed, but I don't know how well it will do as a stand-alone. This is one where it might be better to go out and pick up the back issues...and if the shops around Minneapolis are any indication, it won't be hard to get the issues that tied into it.
38 MEGATOKYO VOL 1 TP $9.95 DAR 2,049
This is about the biggest success story of the Internet, since this started as a web strip and is now a very successful series of graphic novels available through Dark Horse. It is one of the better web strips as well, although it is all of the early strip as the artist was "finding his way" and figuring out just what sort of story he wanted to do. The strip works best for those who know about video games and anime. Like every other on line comic strip.
39 SILVER SURFER VOL 1 COMMUNION TP $14.99 MAR 1,892
The relaunch of the Silver Surfer, and I have to say that this new approach left me cold. I couldn't make it through the entire book, having lost interest in it fairly quickly.
40 AI LOVE YOU VOL 2 GN (Of 9) $9.99 TKP 1,814
41 TOM STRONG BOOK THREE HC $24.95 DC 1,790
A great comic that stays true to comics pulp roots. Wonderfully drawn and filled with more creativity and imagination than most other entire companies, this book is highly recommended.
42 HELLBOY VOL 5 CONQUEROR WORM TP NEW PRT $17.95 DAR 1,782
More Hellboy for the movie. It's good, so if you haven't read it yet, do so now and see just how good Mike Mignola's art is.
43 MARVEL MASTERWORKS AMAZING SPIDER-MAN VOL 6 2ND ED $49.99 MAR 1,767
Marvel is starting up the Masterworks again, and these are for the hard-core Silver Age fan, since you can get all of these stories in the "Essentials" format. Early Marvels are kind of the template for all the comics that came since, but if you want to just READ the stories, get the Essentials.
44 SPIDER-MAN DOCTOR OCTOPUS NEGATIVE EXPOSURE TP $13.99 MAR 1,720
A solid mini-series that was obviously put out so that there would be Doc Oc trades available when the movie comes out. It also gives a MUCH different characterization to Doc Oc than he has had over the past 20 or so years, which is good, since he had become a generic Spider-Man villain. Mildly recommended to super-hero fans.
45 TEEN TITANS A KIDS GAME TP $9.95 DC 1,712
46 NIGHTMARES & FAIRY TALES VOL 1 ONCE UPON TIME $14.95 SLG 1,649
I love this book, and this trade of the first 6 issues is a prefect gift for the gothy friend you have. Telling horror stories and going back to the pre-cleaned up version of fairy tales is something new in comics, and the art fits the feeling of subtle horror the writing evokes. Highly recommended.
47 WHATS MICHAEL VOL 9 IDEAL CAT TP $8.95 DAR 1,649
My favorite manga, telling stores about different cats, some humorous, some fantasy and some just pure Japanese oddness, this is a great book for people who want to give the Japanese comics a try or just want to read short stories. Highly recommended.
48 QUEEN & COUNTRY VOL 5 OPERATION STORM FRONT TP (MR) $14.95
49 BATMAN WAR ON CRIME OVERSIZED SC $9.95 DC 1,563
DC hyped the big Alex Ross Batman book this month, getting a lot of re-orders for it. Anyone who says that giving a backstock title a push in Previews doesn't help sales just isn't paying attention. It's a solid story and one of Alex Ross's best efforts in a long time. Highly recommended.
50 SAMURAI DEEPER KYO VOL 6 GN (Of 18) $9.99 TKP 1,563
51 ESSENTIAL TOMB O/DRACULA VOL 1 TP $14.99 MAR 1,523
The first 25 or so issues of this very well done horror series. The first 5 issues they reprint are typical 70's Marvel twaddle, but once Gene Colon and Marv Wolfman find their groove, it is an amazing series and is highly recommended.
52 BTVS STAKE TO HEART TP $12.95 DAR 1,523
53 DIORAMAS LOVE STORY GN $12.95 IMA 1,492
54 EXCEL SAGA VOL 6 TP $9.95 VIZ 1,453
55 TO HEART MANGA VOL 1 TP $9.99 ADV 1,405
56 MARVEL MASTERWORKS AMAZING SPIDER-MAN VOL 6 HC VAR ED $54.99 MAR 1,405
Same book as up above, but with the same style cover as the first Masterworks and they only charge you five dollars for that different cover. I'm sorry, but that's just stupid on both ends.
57 INVINCIBLE VOL 2 EIGHT IS ENOUGH TP $12.95 IMA 1,382
58 KRAZY & IGNATZ 1931-32 KAT ALILT W/SONG TP $14.95 FAN 1,382
A reprint of the Krazy Kat Sunday strips, and for comics historians only. As I read through it, I'm amazed the strip ever got to be a mainstream success with its surrealistic layouts and bizarre stories.
59 TRANSFORMERS ARMADA VOL 3 TP $20.95 DRE 1,358
60 CERES CELESTIAL LEGEND VOL 7 TP $9.95 VIZ 1,343
61 DODGES BULLETS GN $9.95 IMA 1,335
62 RAGNAROK VOL 10 GN (Of 10) $9.99 TKP 1,335
63 GRAVITATION VOL 5 GN (Of 12) $9.99 TKP 1,327
64 VAGABOND VOL 10 TP $9.95 VIZ 1,280
65 Y THE LAST MAN VOL 3 ONE SMALL STEP TP (MR) $12.95 DC 1,264
Re-orders for this highly recommended Vertigo book, telling the story of a world in which all of the men are killed by a plague, except one. It avoids the clichés and tells a very down to earth action story with well done characters and a great premise.
66 PLANET O/T CAPES TP (MR) $12.95 AIT 1,248
67 ARIA MANGA VOL 1 TP $9.99 ADV 1,241
68 BATMAN HUSH VOL 2 HC $19.95 DC 1,241
More re-orders for the Jim Lee issues. That sold amazingly well as a comic book (highest sales since 1999). Who missed out on them and is buying this?
69 GLOOMCOOKIE VOL 3 TP (MR) $14.95 SLG 1,233
I am a big fan of Gloomcookie, and this trade reprints some of the more character driven issues. Highly recommended and buy one to impress the goth girl you want to ask out.
70 DNANGEL VOL 1 GN (Of 5) $9.99 TKP 1,217
71 SPOOKHOUSE VOL 1 TP (MR) $19.99 IDW 1,209
72 BATTLE VIXENS VOL 1 GN (Of 4) (MR) $9.99 TKP 1,209
73 LOVE FIGHTS VOL 1 TP (MR) $14.95 ONI 1,209
74 X 1999 VOL 14 CONCERTO TP $9.95 VIZ 1,209
75 KINGDOM COME TP $14.95 DC 1,154
More re-orders for a trade paperback that is about 10 years old by now. It's very good, and highly recommended, but I'm a bit amazed it still sells so well.
76 GI JOE FRONTLINE VOL 3 HISTORY REPEATING TP $9.95 DDP 1,146
77 CANDIDATE FOR GODDESS VOL 1 GN (Of 5) $9.99 TKP 1,146
78 FAERIES LANDING VOL 1 GN (Of 13) $9.99 TKP 1,146
79 HELLBOY VOL 2 WAKE DEVIL TP NEW PRT $17.95 DAR 1,123
80 TRANSFORMERS DINOBOT HUNT GN $19.95 TIT 1,099
81 NEAL ADAMS MONSTERS SC $12.95 VAN 1,091
Not really a new story or new art, but a collection of a story that Neal Adams did in the 70's and 80's. The story itself is pretty thin, but Adams's art was at its best, and his work still has the power to impress. Recommended highly for Neal Adams fans and mildly recommended for everyone else.
82 VAN HELSINGS NIGHT OFF $12.95 TOP 1,084
83 JING KING O/BANDITS VOL 5 GN (Of 7) $9.99 TKP 1,076
84 MOTU ICONS O/EVIL TP $18.95 MVC 1,060
85 COMIC PARTY BOOK 1 PARTY TIME GN $9.99 CPM 1,060
86 SUKI VOL 2 GN (Of 3) $9.99 TKP 1,060
87 PUNISHER MOVIE TP $12.99 MAR 1,044
Rushed out to capitalize on the movie. I still don't understand why anyone would buy a movie adaptation when you'll be able to get the movie on DVD for about the same price in September.
88 INITIAL D VOL 11 GN (Of 23) $9.99 TKP 1,036
89 KING O/HELL VOL 5 GN (Of 8) $9.99 TKP 1,036
90 MIGHTY MITE HC $6.95 FAN 1,029
91 GET BACKERS VOL 2 GN (Of 23) $9.99 TKP 1,021
92 FAERIES LANDING VOL 2 GN (Of 13) $9.99 TKP 1,013
93 HEAVEN LLC GN (MR) $12.95 IMA 1,005
94 BATTLE ANGEL ALITA VOL 3 KILLING ANGEL TP 2ND ED $9.95 VIZ 997
95 MINK VOL 1 GN $9.99 TKP 989
96 HOT GIMMICK VOL 4 TP $9.95 VIZ 966
97 NOBLE CAUSES VOL 2 FAMILY SECRETS TP $12.95 IMA 958
A good comic that I think should sell better. Another twist on the super-hero concept as it shows media obsessed super-heroes, but also delves into the soap opera of their lives in a way that no other comic has tried. Highly recommended for super-hero fans and worth checking out for those who aren't big fans, as it may appeal to them as well.
98 TEZUKAS BUDDHA VOL 3 DEVADATTA HC $24.95 NAT 950
99 NEON GENESIS EVANGELION VOL 2 TP 2ND ED $9.95 VIZ 942
100 ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN VOL 7 IRRESPONSIBLE TP $12.99 MAR 934
And with that, I'm done! Yay! Yay!
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