So this may surprise a lot of you longtime comic-book fans, but shockingly, DC Comics going Full Woke and giving Superman a boyfriend and a climate change focus has not resulted in strong sales:
Last fall, DC Comics, apparently convinced they should make the iconic superhero Superman go woke, replaced Clark Kent with his son Jonathan Kent, then had Jonathan Kent fall in love with a man. DC gushed, "Just like his father before him, Jon Kent has fallen for a reporter. After initially striking up a friendship with reporter Jay Nakamura, he and Jon become romantically involved in the pages of SUPERMAN: SON OF KAL-EL #5...
But as Bounding Into Comics reports, the woke changes aren't selling well in general. Bounding Into Comics notes that sales tracking website ICv2, which states that their data set is "unit and dollar sales rankings based on sales tracked at point-of-sale by the ComicHub system at stores selling American comics around the world," reported that although Superman: Son of Kal-El #5 was the 6th most sold comic book for the month of November, it trailed Batman and Dark Knights of Steel. ICv2's data set for December found Superman: Son of Kal-El was nowhere on the top 50 chart when looking at total units.
Put more bluntly: "[T]he flagship Superman book at DC Comics is not on a Top 50 Comic Books by Units chart only 5 issues in."
Superman is, after all, one of the most iconic American brands ever created. It's right up there with Mickey Mouse, McDonald's and Ford: Nearly a century old, Superman has for years symbolized American cultural dominance both abroad and at home. He's the total pop culture package!
Except when you retcon his character to make him kiss other boys and/or become the male Greta Thunberg. Then, not so much.
The numbers relative to other Superman comics are astonishing:
Bounding Into Comics pointed out that 68,800 issues being sold paled in comparison to previous Superman #1 issues; the 2018 reboot featured Superman #1 selling 133,700 copies; the June 2016 DC Rebirth reboot featured Superman Rebirth #1 selling 118,434 copies and Superman #1 selling 105,380 copies; the 2011 debut of The New 52 found Superman #1 selling 118,376 copies.
Hey DC Comics, maybe you should make him a polyamorous Black Lives Matter ally—that'll probably boost those sales numbers a bit!!
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