Image Comics’ King Spawn #1, from Spawn creator Todd McFarlane, Sean Lewis, and Javier Fernandez, was the best-selling comic book of 2021 through Diamond Comic Distributors, the world’s largest distributor of comics, graphic novels, and pop culture merchandise.
2021’S COMIC BOOKS
Image Comics had two books among Diamond’s top shipping comics for the year, both spin-offs from Todd McFarlane’s Spawn that launched “Spawn’s Universe.” In addition to King Spawn, McFarlane, Ales Kot, and Brett Booth’s Gunslinger Spawn#1, featuring a Spawn from the Wild West resurrected in the present day, ranked #3 for the year.
BOOM! Studios also had two books among the top ten. James Tynion IV, Tate Brombal, Chris Shehan, and Werther Dell’Edera’s The House of Slaughter #1 was their top book for the year, and BRZKRR #1 from Keanu Reeves, Matt Kindt, Ron Garney, and Bill Crabtree ranked #4.
Marvel Comics placed six titles in Diamond’s top ten for the year. Their top shipped book, Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman’s Venom #35, was the two-hundredth published issue of Venom and ranked #5 for the year. Phillip Kennedy Johnson and Salvador Larroca’s Alien #1, based on the film series, ranked #6; Jed MacKay and Alessandro Cappuccio’s Moon Knight #1 ranked #7; Gerry Duggan and Pepe Larraz’s X-Men #1 ranked #8; Charles Soule and Steve McNiven’s Star Wars: War of the Bounty Hunters Alpha #1, the first chapter of a crossover across Marvel’s Star Wars titles, ranked #9; and Cavan Scott and Ario Anindito’s Star Wars: The High Republic #1, the comics launch of the Lucasfilm multimedia event set 200 years before the Skywalker Saga, ranked #10.
Among the other premier publishers, Kevin Eastman’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Last Ronin #2, the second chapter of his future Turtles tale, was IDW Publishing’s top book for 2021 at #26; Dynamite Entertainment’s top book, Christopher Priest and Ergun Gunduz’s Vampirella #25, ranked #213; and Dark Horse Comics’ Masters of the Universe: Revelation #1, a prequel to Kevin Smith’s Netflix animated series, ranked #273.
2021’S GRAPHIC NOVELS
James Tynion IV and Martin Simmonds’s The Department of Truth Volume 1, the opening volume of the Image Comics series about the conspiracies underlying the modern world, was the top-selling graphic novel through Diamond Comic Distributors in 2021.
Image Comics had seven of the year’s top ten most ordered graphic novels. Among those best-sellers–Tony Fleecs and Trish Forstner’s Stray Dogs (#3 for the year), the horror story about a group of dogs with the look of an animated film; Robert Kirkman and Ryan Ottley’s Invincible Compendium Volume 1 (#4) and Invincible Volume 1: Family Matters (#5), the basis for Amazon Prime’s animated series; Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips, Jacob Phillips’s Friend of the Devil (#8) and Destroy All Monsters (#10), two original noir graphic novels starring private eye Ethan Reckless; and Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples’ Saga Volume 1 (#9).
Two volumes of James Tynion IV and Werther Dell’Edera’s Something Is Killing the Children from BOOM! Studios placed in the year’s top ten; Volume 1 ranked #2 and Volume 3 ranked #7.
Among the premier publishers, Kieron Gillen and Jacen Burrows’ Warhammer 40,000: Marneus Calgar was Marvel Comics’ top new graphic novel for the year at #17; Dynamite Entertainment’s The Boys Omnibus Volume 1, collecting the Garth Ennis/Darick Robertson series that was adapted into the acclaimed Amazon Prime television series, ranked #28 for the year; Dark Horse Comics’ Avatar: The Last Airbender—Toph Beifong’s Metalbending Academy ranked #40; and Godzilla: Natural Disasters from IDW Publishing charted at #255.
“2021 was a tremendously strong sales year for Diamond and the industry as a whole, and we’re looking forward to building on those successes in 2022,” said Tim Lenaghan, Chief Purchasing officer of Geppi Family Enterprises, the parent company of Diamond Comic Distributors, of the year’s sales. “We’re incredibly pleased to congratulate Image, Todd, and all the creators involved with King Spawnon producing the number #1 book of 2021 as we celebrate Image’s 30th-Anniversary. It’s great to see that Spawn is still ‘King’ after all these years!”
How does Diamond calculate the charts?
It all starts at the comic book shop.
Data for Diamond’s sales charts are compiled by Diamond Comic Distributors from sales made to thousands of comic book specialty shops located in North America and around the world. Additional sales made to online merchants and other specialty retailers may be included as well.
Ranking is calculated based upon orders for comic books, graphic novels, toys and games invoiced and shipped to Diamond customers during any given month, which comprises pre-orders, advance reorders, and reorders, minus any products that are received back from a title marked as returnable. Please note that products marked with an asterisk (*) have had their reported quantities reduced due to retailer returnability, and thus may rank lower on the charts than their actual sales would reflect.
Variant edition comic books and graphic novels at the same price point count as a single SKU. Variant edition comic books, lenticular covers, digital combo packs, and graphic novels at different price points count as separate SKUs for each edition.