Batman Casts Giant Shadow Over 2019 Comic Book Sales

Article by Chris Foti

Batman dominated comic books in 2019, which isn’t a huge surprise, though the figures are startling. The landmark tribute to the Dark Knight, Detective Comics #1000, was the bestselling comic book in 2019. This also marks the second year in a row that DC Comics has taken the crown, with Action Comics #1000 taking the honors in 2018.

Batman titles also took three of the top 10 spots for best selling graphic novels, with DC overall taking 5 spots.

Below is the full press release from DC Comics:

DC’s landmark tribute to Batman, Detective Comics #1000, was named the bestselling comic book of 2019 earlier today by Diamond Comic Distributors (DCD), the world’s largest distributor of comics, graphic novels, and pop culture merchandise. This marks the second year in a row that DC has topped the comic book sales charts, following the stellar sales of 2018’s Action Comics #1000.

As the cornerstone of Batman’s 80th anniversary, the 96-page tribute to Gotham City’s Dark Knight featured an unbelievable lineup of storytelling talent, a series of decade-spanning variant covers, and a robust retailer variant program, as well as introducing a new version of the Super-Villain Arkham Knight into DC continuity. The book was praised as an incredible tribute to Batman, receiving rave reviews from fans, retailers, and comics trade media alike.

Detective Comics #1000 wasn’t the only title to make the DCD list of bestsellers; DCeased #1, the debut issue of Tom Taylor, Trevor Hairsine, James Harren, and Stefano Gaudiano’s frightening story of DC’s heroes making a last stand against a life-consuming techno-organic plague, came in at #5 on the list.

DC was also well-represented on DCD’s list of bestselling graphic novels and trade paperbacks, with Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’s iconic Watchmen gaining top honors as the #1 trade paperback for 2019. Of the top 10 graphic novels and trades, DC took five spots including Watchmen, with the collected edition of Mister Miracle by Tom King and Mitch Gerads coming in at #5, Sean Gordon Murphy’s Batman: White Knight at #7, Moore and Brian Bolland’s Batman: The Killing Joke at #9, and Brian Azzarello and Lee Bermejo’s Batman: Damned hardcover ranking #10.

“These rankings demonstrate how Batman continues to be an important part of our publishing success, in comic books, original graphic novels and collected editions,” said DC Publisher Dan DiDio. “I’m incredibly happy to see how enthusiastically fans responded to Detective Comics #1000, especially during Batman’s 80th anniversary and to be the best-selling comic book two years in a row is a fantastic achievement.”

For more information on the World’s Greatest Super Heroes, visit,  the DC YouTube channel, or follow @DCComics and @TheDCNation on social media.

It might seem odd for Watchmen and The Killing Joke to be on the 2019 list, given they were released in 1987 and 1988, respectively. This was, no doubt, boosted by fans of the HBO series Watchmen and the critically acclaimed film Joker. HBO’s series essentially acts as a sequel to the graphic novel Watchmen and Joker clearly took inspiration from The Killing Joke, with Arthur Fleck being a failed comedian and the whole “one bad day” philosophy. Alan Moore had himself a nice little 2019.

Did you pick up any of these top selling Batman/DC books in 2019? Which ones? Let us know!

Images and Press Release Courtesy of DC Entertainment, pub-9882021783221697, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0

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