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Don’t call it a comeback? Marvel’s ‘seriously inflated’ top-seller

Point One

The takeaway from November’s direct-market sales estimates seemed to be that Marvel had rebounded from its thrashing the previous month by DC Comics, whose New 52 numbers appear to be settling. With 33.3 percent of dollar shares and 37.94 percent of unit sales, the House of Ideas came within two points of its competitor.

However, in its analysis ICv2.com suggests that those numbers don’t tell the whole story, and that the sales of some of Marvel’s top titles are a bit — or, in one case, “seriously” — inflated.

The retail news and analysis site reminds us that the publisher’s top-selling comic at No. 5, the $5.99 Point One, was over-shipped, with stores receiving double their initial orders as free copies. That means retailers didn’t order an estimated 113,352 copies but rather around 56,600, placing Point One at No. 29 on the Diamond Comic Distributors chart, between The Amazing Spider-Man #673 and The Avengers #19.

Skipping past The Avenging Spider-Man #1 and Wolverine and the X-Men #2, with their variant covers — four for the former alone — brings us to Fantastic Four #600, the anniversary issue whose $7.99 price tag helped Marvel to gain ground in dollar share.

Related: John Mayo looks at November sales estimates for Comic Book Resources


Wonder Woman wields a bloody labrys in Cliff Chiang’s promo art

Wonder Woman promotional art by Cliff Chiang

A lovely new piece of art popped up last night on Tumblr for Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang’s upcoming run on Wonder Woman. New to us, in any case, as Chiang writes that it’s actually “an early promo image we cooked up to visualize our take on Wonder Woman. The original version has pants!”

Wonder Woman #1, by Azzarello and Chiang, arrives Sept. 21.

Comic-Con International announces Thursday programming

Comic-Con International

Comic-Con International has released a jam-packed programming schedule for Thursday, July 21, that includes the first of DC’s aforementioned “New 52″ panels, presentations from IDW Publishing and BOOM! Studios on some of their licensed titles — Transformers, G.I. Joe, Dungeons & Dragons and Planet of the Apes — spotlights on Grant Morrison, Joyce Brabner, Paul Levitz, Jo Chen, Roy Thomas and Alex Nino, and a look at Dark Horse’s fall releases.

But that barely scratches the surface. There’s also a panel for Robert Kirkman’s new Skybound imprint, Comic Book Legal Defense Fund master classes, a Q&A with Stan Lee, Todd McFarlane and Yoshiki, an examination of the X-Men’s gay characters, themes and fans, and the screening of a documentary about the late Jeffrey Catherine Jones.

To help you with your Comic-Con planning, we’ve highlighted the comics-specific programming below. To see the full Thursday schedule, complete with television, film and video game content, visit the convention website.

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