Ta-Nehisi Coates’ “Black Panther” No. 1 named best-selling comic of year

– Marvel Comics’ Black Panther No. 1 scripted by hot writer Ta-Nehisi Coates sold 253,259 issues in its first month to become the best selling comic so far in 2016. (That number will likely hit the 300,000 copies Marvel announced in March when re-orders are factored in). No. 2 on the list – an issue of Star Wars: Poe Dameron – sold 175,000 copies, The Hollywood Reporter said.

The sales figures marks an outstanding debut for a character often considered in the second tier of Marvel’s most popular superheroes.

It is comparable to the Marvel’s bestselling solo super hero comics of 2015: Invincible Iron Man No. 1, which sold 279,000 copies and Spider-Gwen No. 1 which sold 254,000 copies. It outpaces such stalwarts as Spider-Man and the X-Men which generally sell in the 75,000-100,000 copies-a-month range.

Coates’ re-imaging of the first mainstream black superhero has been hotly anticipated since it was first announced and has drawn rave reviews. It is a big year for the character — a prince from the fictional (and technologically advanced) African nation of Wakanda) — who in addition to celebrating his 50th anniversary made his big screen debut in Captain America: Civil War.

A solo Black Panther film is scheduled for July 6, 2018. Earlier this year, Coates won the National Book Award for his memoir Between the World and Me and was awarded a MacArthur “genius” grant.