The Netflix adaptation of the comic book The Old Guard – both written by Greg Rucka – has been rather well received. So much so that it has affected sales of the original comic book remarkably. I'm hearing from several retailers at this point they have seen new customers coming into store with one thing on their mind – copies of the Old Guard graphic novel collection.
After making inquiries I am able to report that not only are Image Comics sales of volume one – but they are really up. To the extent that in the month that led up to the release of The Old Guard on Netflix, Image Comics received more orders than the publisher had seen as long as the comic had been published, spanning the last three years. It is also Image's best-selling book on Amazon – still.
We speculated what Image would do with the Saga hiatus, and the disappearance of bankers The Walking Dead and The Wicked + The Divine, and we suspect now that they may be replacing a lot of that with Netflix muscle. The Old Guard receive a seemingly endless stream of hype surrounding it and we noticed an aggressive effort made to connect one of the platform's most-streamed movies with its Image counterpart. Call outs to Image Comics in the film's coverage abound, the Vol. 2 paperback is slated for September, and the reprint of their Vol. 1 got that coveted Netflix sticker on the front to catch customers' eyes.
While the first issue is still a massive draw on eBay, with successful sales like this one.
Netflix is a strong ally for Image Comics to have – and right now that relationship may be beating Boom Studios, even with their First Look deal with Netflix. Sina Grace, W. Maxwell Prince, Dan Watters, James Tynion IV, and Kieron Gillen all seem to have returned to Image with new projects and James Tynion IV is making the journey as well….
Let's see if the Millarworld line of movies for Netflix continues that swing – all of those come out from Image Comics too.