Friday, December 16, 2016

COMICS SALES: Valiant Entertainment for November 2016


Following our look at November sales to comics shops for IDW, Dark Horse, BOOM, and Archie comics, it’s time now to turn our attention to Valiant Entertainment.

The company appears to have placed seven of nine titles solicited in the Top 300 comics for the month. That was good for 1.11 percent of the $29.32 million in retail sales represented by all Top 300 comics, assuming all sold to customers. That 1.11 percent was good for $325,452 of the total market for regular periodical comic books — the so-called “floppies.” Assuming Valiant gets 40 percent of the cover price for its comics, we can estimate it made about $130,180 on its seven Top 300 comics.

These are, of course, very rough calculations. Maybe someone from the Valiant front office will come on here and set us straight. In the meantime, take a look at the numbers per title, as calculated by Comichon.com and ICv2.com



89. HARBINGER RENEGADE ($3.99) Valiant

11/2016: ( 89) Harbinger Renegade #1 — 33,197*

So, this book ties into the “Future of Valiant” event that includes most of the company’s titles this month. Plus, it will lead into Harbinger Wars 2. That event isn’t slated to start until 2018, meaning Valiant must have quite a bit of faith in this series to sustain interest until then. Plus-Plus, this debut issue had about nine variant covers. What that means is that when you pull this issue out of a dollar bin a decade from now, about 90 percent of them will have never been opened.

The asterisk denotes this was returnable, and the number given is about 10 percent off of the initial order from retailers. Future issues will give us some idea of how realistic that reduction in the sales calculation ends up being, but I’m betting not enough. Most recent Valiants have dropped 50 percent or more in retailer orders from #1 to #2. I’m guess that means shops will be sending back the maximum number allowed on this issue.


148. FAITH ($3.99) Valiant

01/2016: (102) Faith #1 — 22,020
02/2016: (164) Faith #2 — 12,266* (-44.3%)
03/2016: (159) Faith #3 — 12,114  (-1.2%)
04/2016: (167) Faith #4 — 12,337  (+1.8%)
05/2016: ---
06/2016: ---
07/2016: (103) Faith #1 — 22,386* (+81.5%)
08/2016: (195) Faith #2 — 10,588  (-52.7%)
09/2016: (192) Faith #3 — 8,962   (-15.4%)
10/2016: (226) Faith #4 — 7,696   (-14.1%)
11/2016: (148) Faith #5 — 16,463 (+113.9%)

After a remarkably well-received mini-series that held onto orders amazingly well, numbers on the ongoing series got real ugly, real fast. The big jump on Issue #5 is due, in part, to extra pages at the same price, but mostly to multiple covers and the appearance, inside and on one the five variant covers, of Hillary Clinton. Pretty funny when you think about it. Remember when Obama graced a cover of AMAZING SPIDER-MAN? At least then Marvel had sense enough to wait until after the election. I wonder if this issue will become as collectible as the ones that had cameos of JFK after his assassination? Regardless, this will likely drop to near 7k next month, with strong trade sales being the only thing saving it from cancellation, I should think.


211. SAVAGE ($3.99)

11/2016: (211) Savage #1 (of 4) — 8,874

One of several “Future of Valiant” tie-in mini-series. Compared to most #1s from the company, that is not a very good number.


218. BRITANNIA ($3.99)

09/2016: (115) Britannia #1 (of 4) — 19,910*
10/2016: (218) Britannia #2 (of 4) — 8,583 (-56.9%)
11/2016: (218) Britannia #3 (of 4) — 8,302  (-3.3%)

Looks like retailers guess pretty close on #2. I wonder how many of those #1s actually sold? The series must have done well enough for Valiant, however. I understand a new series in coming soon.


232. BLOODSHOT U.S.A. ($3.99)

10/2016: (163) Bloodshot USA #1 (of 4) — 14,509
11/2016: (232) Bloodshot USA #2 (of 4) —  7,210 (-50.3%)

See what I mean? Second issue Valiants drop hard. It makes me wonder how many people actually read these newer comics and how many are aging fanboys just buying them out of nostalgic love for the original early ‘90s launch, when the Shooterized company was the biggest thing there was?


272. NINJAK ($3.99)

03/2015: ( 97) Ninjak #1 — 24,351
11/2015: (200) Ninjak #9 — 8,538
------------------------------
12/2015: (224) Ninjak #10 — 8,850* (+3.7%)
01/2016: (191) Ninjak #11 — 8,373  (-5.4%)
02/2016: (208) Ninjak #12 — 7,872  (-6.0%)
03/2016: (209) Ninjak #13 — 7,332  (-6.9%)
04/2016: (214) Ninjak #14 — 8,143 (+11.1%)
05/2016: (247) Ninjak #15 — 6,501 (-20.2%)
06/2016: (276) Ninjak #16 — 6,419  (-1.3%)
07/2016: (259) Ninjak #17 — 6,151  (-4.2%)
08/2016: (250) Ninjak #18 — 7,043 (+14.5%)
09/2016: (235) Ninjak #19 — 6,206 (-11.9%)
10/2016: (260) Ninjak #20 — 5,876  (-5.3%)
11/2016: (272) Ninjak #21 — 5,640  (-4.0%)

six months: -13.2%
one year:   -33.9%
from #1:    -76.8%

Every now and again Valiant does something, variant covers most likely, to goose orders. But the numbers quickly drop back into place and, overall, this title seems to be falling faster than standard attrition.


293. GENERATION ZERO ($3.99)

08/2016: (152) Generation Zero #1 — 16,270
09/2016: (227) Generation Zero #2 —  6,830 (-58.0%)
10/2016: (262) Generation Zero #3 —  5,771 (-15.5%)
11/2016: (293) Generation Zero #4 —  4,934 (-14.5%)

Hasn’t found its level yet. Realistically, doesn’t have much more time to try. I don’t imagine Valiant can afford to let the numbers on this drop too much further.


307. WRATH OF THE ETERNAL WARRIOR ($3.99)

11/2015: ( 84) Wrath/Eternal Warrior #1 — 32,528*
----------------------------------
12/2015: (199) Wrath/Eternal Warrior #2 — 10,364 (-68.1%)
01/2016: (189) Wrath/Eternal Warrior #3 —  8,384 (-19.1%)
02/2016: (205) Wrath/Eternal Warrior #4 —  7,982  (-4.8%)
03/2016: (227) Wrath/Eternal Warrior #5 —  6,532 (-18.1%)
04/2016: (264) Wrath/Eternal Warrior #6 —  5,683 (-13.0%)
05/2016: (266) Wrath/Eternal Warrior #7 —  5,914* (+4.1%)
06/2016: (285) Wrath/Eternal Warrior #8 —  5,987  (+1.2%)
07/2016: (265) Wrath/Eternal Warrior #9 —  5,814  (-2.9%)
08/2016: (313) Wrath/Eternal Warrior #10 — 5,149 (-11.4%)
09/2016: (269) Wrath/Eternal Warrior #11 — 5,266  (+2.3%)
10/2016: (306) Wrath/Eternal Warrior #12 — 4,796  (-8.9%)
11/2016: (307) Wrath/Eternal Warrior #13 — 4,709  (-1.8%)

six months: -20.4%
one year (from #1): -85.5%

We have John Jackson Miller, statistician extraordinaire at Comichron.com, to thank here. These sales numbers are derived from his work, and that of pop culture website ICv2.com, and John either likes Valiant, or has a general curiousity about the company’s fortunes. Because, while the charts unusually only track Diamond Distribution’s Top 300 comics each month, John has been extrapolating numbers for Valiant titles that fall below the magic cutoff line.

As state above, I’m not really sure how long Valiant can sustain a book below 5k in sales (to retailers). We’ll find out, I guess.


310. THE ADVENTURES OF ARCHER & ARMSTRONG ($3.99)

03/2016: ( 73) Advs of Archer & Armstrong #1 — 27,491*
04/2016: (150) Advs of Archer & Armstrong #2 — 13,563*
05/2016: (236) Advs of Archer & Armstrong #3 —  7,059
06/2016: (272) Advs of Archer & Armstrong #4 —  6,448
07/2016: (219) Advs of Archer & Armstrong #5 —  8,324
08/2016: (272) Advs of Archer & Armstrong #6 —  6,247
09/2016: (275) Advs of Archer & Armstrong #7 —  5,143
10/2016: (304) Advs of Archer & Armstrong #8 —  4,826
11/2016: (310) Advs of Archer & Armstrong #9 —  4,585

six months: -35.0%
from #1:    -83.2%

So, pretty much what I’ve been saying for all the Valiant titles. Honestly, and I know a lot of readers will excoriate me for saying this, I don’t see any way for Valiant to survive much longer without inviting Jim Shooter back in. Making him editor-in-chief would certainly create a linewide boost on curiosity alone. But I have faith he could sustain sales over a longer term than the company is managing now.


Now, let’s take a look at attrition over time for the Valiant titles that came out in November

Six months:
Ninjak: -13.2%
Eternal Warrior: -20.4%
Archer & Armstrong: -35.0%

One year:
Ninjak: -33.9%
Eternal Warrior: -85.5%

From #1:
Faith: -26.5% (-65.6% before election issue)
Bloodshot USA: -50.3%
Britannia: -58.3%
Generation Zero: -69.7%
Ninjak: -76.8%
Archer & Armstrong: -83.2%
Eternal Warrior: -85.5%


So, there you go. Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.





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