Monday, August 30, 2004

W.I.T.C.H.?

Thought balloons points to a New York Times story about Disney's latest efforts at world-wide domination, wherein they discuss a Disney comic series called W.I.T.C.H.. Aimed at tween and early teen girls, it reportedly sells over a million copies of each issue world-wide, and a trade collection has sold over 650,000 copies in the U.S.

Well holy crap!

Besides putting just about everything in the Diamond catalog to shame sales-wise, how is it that something that popular hasn't even crossed my comic pop-culture radar? Granted, I'm not the target audience for W.I.T.C.H., and I'd probably miss any advertising even if I wasn't skipping over commercials with my TiVo, but I've not even seen any copies of this in any comic store, bookstore, department store or grocery store or any kind of store. With 650,000 copies extant, you'd think I would have come across this...

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

I got a comp copy of this at ALA once. It isn't a comic. It's a chapter book with 4 pages of a comic printed inside. I don't remember it as being very well written. If girls in their early teens are reading it, they are reading WAY below grade level.

-tangognat

Dave said...

Ahh... Well, the 'early teens' bit was based on my reading of the NYT story, not anything that Disney had said.

I've now done some further reading, and it seems that the U.S. chapter books are adaptations of comics that appear in Europe. There's a good story (in English) from an Italian magazine here. (It says that the comic magazine is targeted at girls ages 9-15--presumably the chapter books are targeted lower.)

There appear to be 5 different chapter books extant; that's an average of 130,000 per book sold, which is still pretty good, but not beyond the realm of possibility for a kids chapter book.

Dave said...

ICv2 has more on W.I.T.C.H. here.

tangognat said...

130,000 per volume sounds much more reasonable than the numbers in the Times article.