Spin-offs from TV shows like 'Dr. Who' leads to 'terrific' rise of children's comics

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London, November 26 : Children's comics have made a comeback on the back of the success of spin-offs from TV shows like 'Dr. Who' and new titles.

Market research company Mintel says that an array of new publications has helped boost sales by more than 72 per cent in five years.

The company reckons that the comics and children's magazine sector is currently worth 136million pounds, up from 79million pounds in 2003.

It revealed that the BBC's Dr. Who Adventures magazine topped the chart as the most popular children's title in 2007, with a circulation of 155,000.

The company further said that comics based on American cartoon series The Simpsons have proved very popular too.

The DFC, an old-school comic for eight to 12-year-olds which includes an illustrated version of Philip Pullman's tallship tale The Adventures of John Blake, has also been able to make a good market for itself.

Publisher David Fickling said that the subscription-only title, launched in June, is the first new weekly story comic to be published in 25 years.

He blamed businesses that thought that taking out comics were not profitable for killing the trade in the past, insisting that children had always wanted them.

"After a long time people have realised that children - and adults - really like the comic form," he said.

Another comic to win readers is Death By Chocolate or DBC, which is a 2000AD-style, darker comic for teens and adults.

Mark Brecchin, Senior Leisure Analyst at Mintel, said: "It seems that the humble comic is standing the test of time and even today they provide an ideal treat for children. The market for this traditional favourite has gone from strength to strength due to a host of new launches, price rises and the fact that publishers now bring out more issues per title each month."

He added: "Sales of comics have flourished despite the wide variety of media and other forms of digital entertainment now aimed at pre-teens. Children today enjoy reading and sharing comics, and there is no real indication of replacement by other media."

Michael Rosen, the Children's Laureate, welcomed the rise of comics as "terrific", and said: "I don't know how it is they came to be regarded as simple in this country. They are very complex."

Pointing out that children enjoyed reading comics as "an artform in themselves", he said that it would be an added bonus if they graduated to books.

ANI

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