Reading various online sales commentaries, one might be led to believe that DC's Countdown is a disaster, or at least a disappointment compared to its previous weekly series 52. But is it really?
Near the end of its run, 52 was selling about 95,000 copies an issue at $2.50 each.
The latest month's worth of Countdown's sales have it selling about 85,000 an issue at $3 each.
Doing the math, we see that at the end 52 was grossing $237,500 an issue; and Countdown is currently grossing $255,000 an issue. So on dollar value, Countdown is currently selling more than 52 did at its end! Countdown's numbers jumped up sizeably from the previous couple of months, when it was selling in the low 70K's. (Not sure why this is...) but even at 72,000 copies Countdown was grossing $216,000 per issue, which is more a reflection of the general downward trend that 52 was experiencing than any seismic shift.
This doesn't even factor in the talent cost; I'm willing to bet that Johns/Morrison/Waid/Rucka rates are more than Dini/Gray/Palmiotti/Bedard/Beechen/McKeever rates.
Did 52 gross more over its entire run than Countdown is likely to? Probably. But a disaster/disappointment? Hardly. (At least from a sales perspective; Your opinion as to the quality of the comics will no doubt vary...)