December 1987 Comic Book Sales to Comics Shops
Estimated Comics Preordered by North American Comics Shops
Based on Reports from Diamond Comic Distributors
1987 ended with the Marvel X-titles ruling the top four slots, including the $3.25 Excalibur Special Edition (not to be confused with the series launch in 1988). Diamond Comic Distributors did not report dollar rankings, but at that price it almost certainly led them at Diamond. It was the top dollar book at Capital City Distribution. DC placed its top book in fifth: The Weird #1, by Jim Starlin and Bernie Wrightson.
DC had series launches in World of Smallville #1and Checkmate #1, placing 24th and 39th respectively. Marvel's top launch was The Pitt #1, a New Universe title not to be confused with the later Image series. The $3.25 book finished in 31st place.
The Diamond chart had something called "Bonus Book #1" in 57th place. This does not appear to have been anything solicited, but may be connected with the Bonus Book inserts that started in select DC comics around this time.
The only graphic novel in the Top 100 was Iron Man: Crash, which Marvel advertised as the first computer generated graphic novel. The computer-generated comics series Shatter from First had preceded it in 1985.
The raw version of the chart below was presumably published in the November 1987 Diamond Dialogue newsletter; it was reprinted in Comics Values Monthly #22, where we found it. We've added publishers and ship dates. CVM erroneously only listed issue numbers for 84th through 87th and 89th place; we believe the titles we've listed below are the ones they intended to report, based on process of elimination.
Diamond did not yet report market shares; Capital City this month found Marvel with a dollar share of 36.69%, DC with a dollar share of 30.41%, and Eclipse at 8.69%.
The dates shown below are the dates the comics shipped from the printer, according to Capital City's Orderpak (December 1989). Capital reported almost all dates as Tuesdays, which corresponded to when the printer Ronald's released its comics — but World Color Press wasn't releasing its books until 12:01 a.m. on Thursdays. It's not clear which books came from that printer, however, so we've kept everything on Tuesday unless the dates said otherwise.
Further, in this era, distributor catalog dates for all publishers did not synch up exactly with the calendar month, so Diamond's October charts include one week's worth of DC comics from November — and are missing the first week's comics, which would have appeared in Diamond's September charts. This would continue until March 1995, when DC would realign its solicitations with the Direct Market's calendar month (that chart only included three weeks of DC sales). Because Diamond did not report indexed sales, there is no way to know where those comics would have landed in this month's chart.
—John Jackson Miller
This list includes all items on Diamond's Top 100 chart.
Distributor charts are regional commodity reports, not measures of a work's total reach. Read our FAQ.
The links lead to current listings for each item on eBay. You can also find the books at your comics shop.
|6||Justice League International||12||$0.75||12/08/87||DC|
|15||Web of Spider-Man||37||$0.75||12/01/87||Marvel|
|16||Peter Parker the Spectacular Spider-Man||137||$0.75||12/02/87||Marvel|
|17||G.I. Joe A Real American Hero||70||$1.00||12/15/87||Marvel|
|21||West Coast Avengers||31||$0.75||12/01/87||Marvel|
|24||World of Smallville||1||$0.75||12/08/87||DC|
|29||G.I. Joe Special Missions||10||$1.00||12/01/87||Marvel|
|38||Adventures of Superman||439||$0.75||12/22/87||DC|
|40||Legion of Super-Heroes||45||$2.95||12/15/87||DC|
|43||Star Trek The Next Generation||3||$1.00||01/05/88||DC|
|44||Who's Who in the Legion||1||$1.25||12/22/87||DC|
|51||Lone Wolf and Cub||8||$2.50||First|
|53||Green Lantern Corps||223||$0.75||12/22/87||DC|
|61||Teen Titans Spotlight||20||$1.00||01/05/88||DC|
|67||Groo the Wanderer||38||$1.00||12/01/87||Marvel|
|68||Young All Stars||11||$1.25||12/15/87||DC|
|70||Cinder and Ashe||2||$1.75||12/08/87||DC|
|72||Conan the Barbarian||205||$1.00||12/15/87||Marvel|
|77||Saga of R'as al Ghul||4||$2.50||12/08/87||DC|
|85||Tales of G.I. Joe||4||$1.50||12/01/87||Marvel|
|88||Uncle Scrooge Adventures||4||$0.95||12/29/87||Gladstone|
|91||Savage Sword of Conan||146||$2.00||12/14/87||Marvel|
|92||Iron Man Graphic Novel||$12.95||12/08/87||Marvel|
|94||Speed Racer Special||1||$1.75||Now|
Diamond did not report graphic novel sales separately this month, but some items appeared in the Top 100.