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  1. #1
    Moderator oldschool's Avatar
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    Default Can we admit that ASM title is in a sales slump?

    There are hundreds of posts on these boards dissecting sales numbers for Amazing Spider-Man each and every month and several points keep being made: Comics sell a lot less physical copies than they used to. No one seems to know what digital sales account for but it is significant. And ASM still outsells just about every other solo superhero titles. BUT STILL. It looks like the title has leveled off in the mid-50k range for a "normal" (non-event and non-relaunch) issue and, arguments about the direction of the title aside, it just seems to be in a funk.

    Some here have lofty expectations positing that ASM should sell in the 100k range as Batman does each month but I personally think that title is an outlier. But I also think of ASM as Marvel's flagship title and it just feels like it should do better than 54,000 units most months. I feel that Slott has been on the title too long (IMO, he is a few years past his best work) and that may be harming the title's sales at this point. And I don't mean to pin it all on him; this could be editorial direction or maybe just the lack of a fresh voice which often helps a title is lacking. Thoughts?
    I miss Kevin Nichols. Not as much as bacon, but still...

  2. #2
    Astonishing Member WebLurker's Avatar
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    If there is a sales slump, how do we know that it's something ASM is doing and not a industry-wide thing? It is my understanding that comics in general don't sell like they used to and ASM has been doing pretty well in recent memory.

  3. #3
    Moderator oldschool's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WebLurker View Post
    If there is a sales slump, how do we know that it's something ASM is doing and not a industry-wide thing? It is my understanding that comics in general don't sell like they used to and ASM has been doing pretty well in recent memory.
    As I wrote above, it just seems to be stalled in the mid-50,000 range after being higher just in the last few years. It seems to be trending downward when you look at it vs other titles.
    I miss Kevin Nichols. Not as much as bacon, but still...

  4. #4
    Mighty Member theoneandonly's Avatar
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    If spider mans title is to be compared to Batman's by reason of company's most successful mascot like character whose should superman be compared with I wonder.
    The Self is the only existing reality

  5. #5
    Post Editing OCD Confuzzled's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by theoneandonly View Post
    If spider mans title is to be compared to Batman's by reason of company's most successful mascot like character whose should superman be compared with I wonder.
    The title that kickstarted Marvel as we know it: Fantastic Four...

  6. #6
    Moderator Frontier's Avatar
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    I'm wondering how much the renumbering is really going to bump things up at this point, since there isn't going to be much difference in the book otherwise outside the status quo.

  7. #7
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    I always read how the title is in a slump when it's still one of the top-selling books out and any change in sales is more a reflection of the industry than anything else. As mentioned by others, Batman is an outlier.

    I also keep reading how folks like to pin the slump on Slott when the book has sold quite well overall during his stint. Even if you the writer was to change, would it really impact the sales? What writer is "hot" enough that folks would flock to Amazing simply because they are writing it? Artist, maybe, but a writer? I rarely pick up a book based on the writer. Usually, I've read some type of summary/article of what the book is about and if I like the premise I may pick it up.

    Case in point: Scarlet Spider. I am familiar with Peter David and have read and liked plenty of things from him, but I did not buy the book because he's writing it. I was interested in what the book would/could do with the Ben27 Reilly character. The writer is just "there" for me. However, I will pass up a book if the art isn't too my liking.

    I've enjoyed and continue to enjoy Slott's run. I may even drop the book when he leaves...lol...as I'm looking for a reason to stop buying all my $3.99 books!

  8. #8
    Loony Scott Taylor's Avatar
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    Another way to look at it - ASM is between events.

    Its ok, though, Generations is coming soon.

    Then another event I am sure.
    Every day is a gift, not a given right.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frontier View Post
    I'm wondering how much the renumbering is really going to bump things up at this point, since there isn't going to be much difference in the book otherwise outside the status quo.
    Add in the fact it has a 'ship nobody wanted, the premise and potential of it has already made redundant by the presence of a crime-fighting couple in Renew Your Vows, meaning 616 Peter is following rather than leading.

  10. #10
    Really Feeling It! Kevinroc's Avatar
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    I think it's impossible to deny that sales are in a slump. For pretty much the entire industry, but for ASM in particular. Of course I'm also the poster who thinks sales of ASM should be comparable to Batman, so what do I know?

  11. #11
    Spectacular Member Vaegrin's Avatar
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    "Slump" might be a loaded term, but Amazing Spider-Man is probably not selling up to its full potential. Current sales are not unprecedented, but they are near the very bottom of Amazing Spider-Man's historic range. While there's been no dramatic collapse, neither is the title is achieving any notable success. Unless something happens to start pushing sales in a better direction, based on the current trajectory it is not out of the question that sales actually could decline under 50K, which would be a historic low. Maybe "Legacy" helps prevent that from happening; maybe not.

    Basically, my perception is that, while the book is not actively driving its existing core readership away; at the same time it's not giving marginal or potential readers any strong, compelling reasons to come on board or stay on board to find out what happens next. This happens to plenty of books. In fact, after the gradual yearlong decline throughout calendar year 2008, Amazing Spider-Man itself frequently sold fewer than 60K per issue, and at times came close to dropping below 50K, beginning in January 2009 until Superior Spider-Man elevated sales in January 2013. In that light, what we are seeing now seems more like a return to the low end of what has been the "normal" sales range for Amazing Spider-Man for many years.

    Give readers a reason to be excited about what might happen next (or possibly a reason to be infuriated, because apparently comic book fans are hopeless masochists), and the numbers will pop back up. That reason could be a new writer, or it could simply be a fresh new direction that draws the interest of potential readers. Ideally, it helps to have a story with both a unique premise and real, significant personal stakes for the hero, but I realize that's hard to accomplish given Marvel's current philosophical aversion to permanent change. Still, while Amazing Spider-Man might not be able to pull down 90K per issue anymore even on its best day (and that's too bad, and it's worth talking about why Spider-Man and the X-Men no longer seem as transcendent as they once were), it should still be able to surpass 60K or even 70K.
    Last edited by Vaegrin; 09-12-2017 at 02:00 PM.

  12. #12

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    I don't think so.

    Saying it's in a sales slump suggests there's something uniquely wrong with this title, which leads to solutions that are applicable to this one book (Swap out Slott, Bring back the marriage, Make Peter a reporter again) which ignores that it is doing better than any other Marvel Universe ongoing title.
    Sincerely,
    Thomas Mets

  13. #13
    Really Feeling It! Kevinroc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Mets View Post
    I don't think so.

    Saying it's in a sales slump suggests there's something uniquely wrong with this title, which leads to solutions that are applicable to this one book (Swap out Slott, Bring back the marriage, Make Peter a reporter again) which ignores that it is doing better than any other Marvel Universe ongoing title.
    It's Spider-Man. Spider-Man should be Marvel's biggest seller.

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevinroc View Post
    It's Spider-Man. Spider-Man should be Marvel's biggest seller.
    Usually, there are other books near the top alongside it. Aside from the times other books are doing better.
    Sincerely,
    Thomas Mets

  15. #15
    Really Feeling It! Kevinroc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Mets View Post
    Usually, there are other books near the top alongside it. Aside from the times other books are doing better.
    True. But even then, ASM isn't Marvel's biggest title. That's still Star Wars. But just because ASM is doing "well" (relatively speaking), doesn't mean there also aren't problems.

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