Monday, 6 February 2012

Are Marvel fighting a losing battle?

So, this weekend saw the release of Diamond's estimated sales figures, and once again DC came out triumphant with, this month, the whole top ten being their books. Since September, this has been the status quo. DC comics have owned as little as 70% of the top ten for the five months since their famous relaunch whereas Marvel were the ones who dominated prior to this.
For January, Diamonds stats have shown that Justice League, Batman, Action Comics, Detective Comics and Green Lantern occupy the top five (of course what else would?) with Flash, Aquaman, Batman and Robin, Superman and Batman: The Dark Knight (The last two really surprised me there) bringing up spaces 6 to 10.
The question I have is, why is this happening? Sure, DC did something unprecedented with their relaunch and the amount of marketing they put into it was certainly heard far and wide so the company have certainly fought to make what has now happened a reality. However, I'm wondering why Marvel can't even get one book in that top ten.
The reason why is that, despite all the hype and fanfare, I personally struggle to get into the DC books. Whereas before I as collecting six different titles, the post relaunch count is simply at two; Action Comics (which I find hit and miss in truth) and Demon Knights. For me, from the 12 issue ones I picked up in that first month, only those two have really kept me interested, and one of those is still a bit of a struggle.
On the other hand, Marvel books fill a large part of my buy list, with eight titles currently on it (although 2 are limited series and another, the criminally underrated Black Panther, ends this month) I find them far more relatable and interesting. Now maybe this is because they have tonnes of history which is still relevant or some other reason, but I find it strange on the basis of what I collect (which, granted, isn't a viable reason) that a Marvel title hasn't cracked that top ten.
So, I ask myself, with ground obviously benig lost, are Marvel fighting a losing battle? Is it simply the case that the hype surrounding the DC relaunch has created a bigger wave than most people (myself included) may have anticipated? Or are Marvel simply buying their time, waiting for the mega hype movie which is "The Avengers" followed by "Amazing Spider-Man" to grab them a incredibly large customer base for which to bounce there titles onto and then take back the market share which was once theirs?