Thursday, July 16, 2015

53 YEARS AGO

      The Marvel Universe consisted of four titles. FANTASTIC FOUR would prosper. TALES TO ASTONISH and JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY (the half superhero and half fantasy anthologies) succeeded. INCREDIBLE HULK did not generate enough sales to survive.  After the cancellation of his series it would be six months before the Hulk would make another appearance.
     I thought that it would illuminating to compare the sales of a successful Lee/Kirby concept to an unsuccessful one from the same year. Unfortunately the only Marvel titles I was able to find the average monthly 1962 sales for were MODELING WITH MILLIE (143,476), PATSY & HEDY (139,855), TALES TO ASTONISH (139,167), STRANGE TALES  (136,637), JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY (132,113), GUNSMOKE WESTERN (126,475) and TALES OF SUSPENSE (126,140).
     At least 43 comics were outselling Marvel's titles in 1962 including CHALLENGERS OF THE UNKNOWN (195,000), BETTY AND VERONICA  (302,820), BATMAN (410,000), CASPER (436,153) and SUPERMAN'S PAL JIMMY OLSEN (470,000).  

Even a crossover with the FANTASTIC FOUR couldn't save the INCREDIBLE HULK.

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