May 2020 Comic Book Sales to Comics Shops
Comics Preordered by North American Comics Shops
Based on Reports from UCS Comic Distributors
This data refers only to sales by UCS. Click to see Diamond Comic Distributors' sales charts.
In April 2020, during the pause in new comics distribution caused by the Coronavirus outbreak, DC Comics left its 25-year-old exclusive agreement with Diamond Comic Distributors.
Beginning with a handful of releases the last week of April, DC began additionally selling through Lunar Distribution, a sister company to mail-order firm DCBS (Digital Comic Book Service) — and UCS Comic Distributors, sister company to retailer Midtown Comics.
According to the initial announcement from DC, Lunar sold to the western part of North America, and UCS the east, including all of the Gulf States and Texas.
Both firms were still developing their websites as of mid-May, but as of May 18, UCS had added a Best Sellers section, including sections for comic books, graphic novels, magazines, books, and promotional items. We're awaiting more information about what goes into these charts, but they appear to be simple top ten lists, without any indexed sales figures.
They appear to reflect not shipped comics, but rather preorders, or a mingling of preorders with shipped orders. This is apparent because both UCS's comic book and graphic novel charts as of the May 18, 2020 snapshot (seen at left) included items that had not shipped yet.
All comics distributor sales charts before 2003 were based on preorders, so that's nothing new — but it's always important to remember when comparing them. Further, while all charts are snapshots of sales at a certain point in time, UCS doesn't yet include information about what specific timeframe is being measured in the rankings.
We noted within a day of its posting that the UCS website chart changes dynamically as time passes, much as digital sales charts do. The likely Comichron practice will be to capture a report at a standard time each month to provide an apples-to-apples comparisons to the extent possible. We'll look again at what the website reports at the end of May.
Again, the reports aren't indexed as yet, so there's no way to tell how many copies shipped of any particular book. Midtown Comics offered DC comics in April and the first part of May, so obviously it was ordering from its UCS arm; Midtown was around 4% or so of Diamond's Direct Market business before the split. So whatever its total sales are following Diamond's resumption of DC shipments on May 20, it's safe to assume that the firm represents at least that 4% of DC's sales.
In keeping with Comichron practice, items that did not ship in May do not appear in the graphics above, but we have not removed the non-May material (like the second-place Dark Nights: Death Metal #1, seen at right) from the charts below. Preorder charts from back in the day long included items that would only come out later on. But our hope would be for a standardized end-of-month chart, as has been customary from most Direct Market distributors post-1984. If such a report becomes available, it will appear here.
You can also click to skip to UCS's Top Graphic Novels for the month.
—John Jackson Miller
This list includes all comic books on UCS's Top 10 chart, according to a snapshot taken May 18, 2020.
If you don't see a book, UCS released no data for it.
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.
|Units||Comic-book Title||Issue||Price||On sale||Publisher|
|2||Dark Nights: Death Metal||1 Card Stock Foil||$4.99||06/16/20||DC|
|3||Joker/Harley: Criminal Sanity||4||$5.99||05/05/20||DC|
|7||Green Lantern: Season 2||3||$3.99||05/05/20||DC|
|8||Joker 80th Aniversary 100 Page Super Spectacular||1||$9.99||06/09/20||DC|
May 2020 Graphic Novel Sales to Comics Shops
Graphic Novels and Trade Paperbacks Preordered by North American Comics Shops Based on Reports from UCS Comic Distributors
This list includes all items on UCS's Top 10 chart as of a snapshot taken May 18, 2020.
If you don't see a book, UCS released no data for it.
The links lead to details about each title on Amazon. You can also find the books at your comics shop.
As mentioned above, the UCS charts appear to include both items which had shipped and had not yet shipped. So while Doomsday Clock Part 2 was the top preordered graphic novel, its June shipping date means that Lost Carnival was really UCS's top May-shipping graphic novel as of the May 19 snapshot.
|Units||Trade Paperback title||Price||On sale||Publisher|
|1||Doomsday Clock HC Part 2 with Slipcase||$24.99||06/16/20||DC|
|2||Lost Carnival: A Dick Grayson Graphic Novel||$16.99||05/05/20||DC|
|3||Superman Smashes the Klan||$16.99||05/12/20||DC|
|4||Joker: 80 Years of the Clown Prince of Crime HC||$29.99||06/02/20||DC|
|5||Year of the Villain: Hell Arisen||$16.99||06/09/20||DC|
|6||Young Justice Vol. 1: Gemworld||$17.99||05/05/20||DC|
|7||Year of the Villain: The Infected||$17.99||06/23/20||DC|
|8||Crisis on Infinite Earths: Paragons Rising Dlx Ed. HC||$17.99||07/07/20||DC|
|9||Justice League Dark Vol. 3: The Witching War||$16.99||05/12/20||DC|
|10||Harley Quin & Poison Ivy HC||$24.99||05/19/20||DC|