No, Marvel’s “Squirrel Girl” Comics Were Never a Success
Certainly Marvel’s The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl has her fans, and they are quite a vocal bunch. A vocal, special bunch. Despite efforts to claim otherwise, however, the Squirrel Girl character has never really been successful in carrying her own solo book. And yes, that includes trade paperback sales, too.
One of the more objective voices commenting on the mainstream comic book industry is Perch, an anonymous comic shop owner who maintains his own YouTube channel, as well as appearing on several other channels including the Larry King and Alterna Comics.
At the request of his viewers, Perch has completed a deep dive into Squirrel Girl sales over the past several years. He found that outside of a few slick sales gimmicks on Marvel’s part (including multiple variant covers and frequent reboots) individual issue sales of Squirrel Girl were consistently low, with a significantly higher month-to-month sales drop (62%) than the Marvel average at the time (32%). The sales of the penultimate Squirrel Girl series cratered by the end of its run, bringing in less than ten thousand orders (not end-user sales) per issue.
The trade paperback editions didn’t fare much better. Over its entire print run, the first volume of The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl shipped less than 14 thousand units, while subsequent volumes barely made a blip on the radar.
And for those who say “But what about muh Scholastic sales?” It looks as though Scholastic doesn’t even stock the Squirrel Girl books on their website.
You should absolutely give Perch’s video below a watch. His analysis is objective, thorough, and clear, and we spot-checked a few of his points to ensure they were accurate.
In any case, the numbers don’t lie. Marvel Comics’ Squirrel Girl experiment indeed seems to have failed, at least as far as sales are concerned. It’s a shame, too, particularly given that she was the first Marvel hero with Down Syndrome and all…