Defiant Print runs

DEFIANT and Broadway Comics, created by Jim Shooter after VALIANT in the 1990s.

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corvettejim1968
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Defiant Print runs

Post by corvettejim1968 »

this list came from David Pass originally that i updated



Warriors Of Plasm
0 - 15,000 1st edition binder
0 - 10,000 2nd edition binder
0 - unknown 3rd edition binder
0 - 150,000 (Previews Edition) Note: This is the actual documented print run.
0 - 25-50 stand alone edition with wrap around cover and 1 staple in the center of the spine
1 - 650,000
2 - 420,000
3 - 265,000
4 - 180,000
5 - 135,000
6 - 105,000
7 - 82,500
8 - 70,000
9 - 61,000
10 - 55,000
11 - 49,000
12 - 40,500
13 - 36,000

Dark Dominion
0 - unknown (card binder)
1 - 325,000
2 - 162,000
3 - 115,500
4 - 89,000
5 - 71,000
6 - 58,500
7 - 51,500
8 - 45,500
9 - 38,500
10 - 34,000

SPLATERBALL
- 15,000 Premier ed. seal
- 10,000 second ed. seal
- 50-100 no seal edition

DEFIANT Genesis
1 10,000 comicfest 93 Philadelphia with Dark Dominion card insert Note: This is the actual documented print run.
1 unknown comicfest 93 Philadelphia no card insert
1 unknown no comicfest logo on front. estimated less than 1,000

Birth of the Defiant Universe
- 1,000 signed and numbered by Jim Shooter

Good Guys
1 - 202,500
2 - 121,500
3 - 85,500
4 - 63,500
5 - 53,000
6 - 46,000
7 - 41,000
8 - 35,000
9 - 30,500

War Dancer
1 - 118,500
2 - 70,000
3 - 55,000
4 - 50,000
5 - 42,000
6 - 35,000

Charlemagne
0 - ?
1 - 92,000
2 - 58,500
3 - 48,500
4 - 42,000
5 - 36,500

Dogs of War
1 - 70,000
2 - 47,000
3 - 37,500
4 - 30,500
5 - 25,000

Prudence & Caution
1 - 81,000
1 - unknown Spanish ed. estimated less than 2,000
2 - 28,800
2 - unknown Spanish ed. estimated 500 - 1,000


It becomes clear when looking at these numbers that Defiant was beginning to stabilize to a reader base of about 20,000 to 25,000 readers and not everyone was buying all the titles. The new title were showing only moderate initial sales with a quick drop-off.

20,000 - 30,000 print runs barely break even. They cost as much to make as the sales generate. Any sales less than that, especially for a company like Defiant that had an expensive and aggressive marketing campaign, it was clearly becoming evident that a negative cash flow was going to follow.

The investment capital ran out, and the positive cash flow was on the verge of running out.

Furthermore, if I project out for the next few months on what had been ordered, these are the "likely" sales totals (...had the issues actually been published)...

Dark Dominion
13 - 25,500
Good Guys
12 - 22,000
Charlemagne
8 - 25,000
Dogs of War
6 - 20,200
Prudence & Caution
5 - 24,500


While it is evident that rough times were ahead, it is discouraging that Defiant was not patient with the 20,000 strong fan base. These people were the readers that would be likely to give positive praise, just as Valiant's small fan base gave their early titles positive publicity.
Last edited by corvettejim1968 on Sat Jul 06, 2019 8:30:49 pm, edited 5 times in total.

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possumgrease
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Re: Defiant Print runs

Post by possumgrease »

How do comics stay alive today that only have print runs of 7,500? Rephrased, how was 25k insufficient to turn a profit in 1993, but 7,500 keeps the lights on today?

Interesting figures though. Thanks for posting them.

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Re: Defiant Print runs

Post by TheeBaldMoose »

possumgrease wrote:How do comics stay alive today that only have print runs of 7,500? Rephrased, how was 25k insufficient to turn a profit in 1993, but 7,500 keeps the lights on today?

Interesting figures though. Thanks for posting them.
I would imagine printing costs. Back in the early 90's, it seemed everyone had printers. Now, I'm basing this off of small to medium sized businesses and home usage, but the cost of printers was amazingly expensive! Ink, maintenance, initial cost was pretty high. I would imagine each comic book business probably had their own printer/printer company that would do their own printing. Zero streamlining at all. If you factor in that at about the time the comic bubble burst was about the time that "dot com" bubble started growing, it was a revolutionary time for computers. Maybe the cost of keeping current was just too much to bear...

Now, I'd imagine companies like Valiant "rent" time or "lease" time at a centrally located printer company that prints many small print cycles for many different businesses. It's not cost effective to have your own printer, so Valiant can operate at a much cheaper rate.

Just a theory, just a brainstorm
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Re: Defiant Print runs

Post by apacseller »

I worked in a comic story during this time and as I think many people will agree, most of the people buying these issues were trying to strike "Valiant Gold" again. Very few people actually were reading them, and most were just buying the #1 of each book. It's a shame. I loved some of those Defiant books.


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