Skip to main content

A DC kids comic is outselling Watchmen, Batman: Dark Knight Returns, and everything else (sorry Batman!)

DC's newest hero Primer isn't paint by numbers

Image credit: Gretel Lusky (DC)

How do you create a new character that will last? If someone had figured out that formula they'd be a bazillionaire, but until then there's various paths to that goal - some with successes, and some not so much.

In poring over sales charts and data for comics (as Popverse is wont to due), we uncovered an under-the-radar hit inside DC Comics that has us looking for a new radar:

Image credit: Gretel Lusky (DC)

Primer by Jennifer Muro, Thomas Krajewski, and Gretel Lusky.

Since it's original publication in June 2020, the Primer OGN has sold out six times - each time with DC quickly ordering a reprint. The current printing on shelves, Primer's seventh printing, came out in April of this year. According to our sources, Primer is DC's best-selling comic for kids and young adults in the past two years - even surpassing the multi-book Teen Titans series.

And just recently, DC announced it was serializing the original 2020 Primer OGN in classic comic book issues beginning in March 2024, with the release scheduled to finish off just in time for the sequel, Primer: Clashing Colors, in summer 2024.

Over on Amazon, Primer has been in the top 5 selling DC comics for most of the past three years. As of right now, it's the second-most-selling DC comic on Amazon - behind only Batman: Year One, and ahead of everything else including Watchmen, Batman: The Killing Joke, and Batman: The Dark Knight Returns. Amazon has even come out with an endorsement, naming it one of the 'Best Books for ages 9-12.'

What is Primer about?

Primer stars a new DC hero with a unique powerset - body paint. Ashley Rayburn uses specially enhanced body paints to help her become a superhero, while inadvertantly raising the ire of the US government over her efforts. Like a Splatoon story come to life inside the DCU, Primer (and her 33 paint-color-based superpowers) turned to be a work of art for readers - leading to DC quietly ushering her into its main continuity soon after.

Primer (seventh printing) is on-sale now, while the serialized version Primer #1 (of 4) is due out in March 2024.

As the year wind downs, it's time to look back and all you've read and watched. Popverse has picked the best movies, best comics, and best TV shows of the year.

But who really cares about what we think? This year, we had you vote for your best movies, best comics, and best TV shows of the year too. Check the lists and mix and see if you agree with our (and your) top choices of the year!

Featured events