A new Mintel market report confirms that the British children’s comics market is thriving

“The pre-teen market […] has experienced […] a massive 72% increase since 2003, and were worth £136m this year, thanks to new titles such as Dr Who Adventures. [ while ] teenage magazines declined by 61%, according to research by consumer analysts Mintel. […] sales of comics are set to increase a further 21% to reach £165 million by 2013.”

And, on the “small treats survive a recession” theory, high-quality paper comics would seem likely to continue to do well even in a recession. Although I’d be interested to see how sales = readership (especially considering the declining birth-rate), strong sales can only be good for comics in general — by raising another generation who’ll be ‘comics literate’ from childhood.

But I wonder where most of that growth has come from, since it’s not from the demographics of the audience? TV and film tie-ins, by the sound of it. Possibly, judging by the shelves of W.H. Smiths, there’s also strong growth in the “tiny tots” end of the market. And I wonder, also, if 2003 saw a historical low in sales — which makes the 2004-2007 period seem stronger than otherwise?