SILVER AND BRONZE AGE MOVERS & SHAKERS: FEBRUARY
(Disclaimer: These are just my views and ideas, and what do I know, really?)
There is no denying comic speculation and investment is the new rock and roll of the industry. New collectors and investors seeing comic books as a safe place to put money are leading the charge, as well as the speculation from crossover in Movies, TV and streaming, the popularity of social media, video sharing sites and the internet in general. The popularity of third party grading and Variant covers means that the most vital part of a comic book – the cover – is more important than ever.
This is a check on what is happening now in the world of Silver and Bronze age comics.
Early issues of Daredevil and Justice League of America are seemingly following in the footsteps of early issues of The Flash, with early villain appearances seeing bumps in price. Daredevil 4 is the first appearance of Purple Man, already confirmed as appearing in the upcoming series AKA Jessica Jones and played by David Tennant. #3 looks to be gaining ground in #4’s wake, too, but was never a cheap book (1st Owl). Justice League of America issues #3 (1st Kanjar-Ro), 5 (Dr. Destiny), 6 (Amos Fortune), and 10 (Felix Faust), as well as the origin in issue #9 seem higher in value and more in demand than they have ever been. The fact is that early issues of JLA have potentially long been undervalued in the marketplace compared to early issues of their Marvel counterparts of the same very early 1960's era (e.g. Fantastic Four #1-10). Factor in an iconic series and cast of characters, and things start to move.
Fantastic Four #48 (1st Silver Surfer) may have started receiving the price attention it has long deserved recently, as it becomes better known and folks realize they want one despite Surfer not appearing on the cover. This is possibly partially due to people using websites like ebay to search for the early Inhumans appearances (#45, 46), and finding more books than they bargained for. It seems to have jumped maybe $20-30 on lower mid-grade copies on the Bay in recent weeks (there are many lower mid-grade copies of this book!). Surfer does appear on the covers of #49 and 50, and both are quite hard to find in better shape, due to the coloring used (if you buy, look out for color touch!), and the fact that those books were handled so much. For the right price and/or grade, these issues are no-brainers, both for the cover appearances (Galactus’ 1st cover appearance is #49 as well as SS), and as the storyline runs through all 3 issues.
Early Aquaman (Vol. 1) is now getting the appreciation it deserves, #1 and Showcase #30 (1st Silver Age appearance) are starting to deliver, and #11, 29, and 35 have already seen a rise in popularity due to the clamor for new (old!) books with first appearances to collect and speculate on. Later Aquaman with spectacular Nick Cardy covers (roughly #37-56) are getting some recognition at last and you may still be able to find them relatively cheap or in nicer condition for a few bucks more.
Captain Marvel #26 seems to be wanting to see a rapid rise in value as an Early Thanos appearance and 1st cover appearance, part of his essential early storyline, and being the 1st appearance of Death, the personification of the Grim Reaper in the Marvel universe, and a possible major player in the Infinity Gauntlet storylines.
Neal Adams covers (and art) are getting more and more attention, and they have always been popular anyway. Try to look for lesser known titles or covers. Stuff like Superboy #160 with the cool cover released right at the height of moon landing fever in the last months of the 1960's goes for next to nothing for example (about $5 in mid-grade), and is probably well worth those few dollars if you find a half decent copy. The 25c giant Batman issues and the Detective Comics either side of #400 may be the next ones to skyrocket, a legendary artist doing iconic characters, and the next best things to the established Adams keys in those titles.
|MIGHT BE TIME TO PICK UP: Early Green Lantern villain 1st appearances and other key issues, prices have not really changed much since the dip after the last film, and he may get the Flash/Green Arrow treatment next. The key books in the Neal Adams covers/art run on Green Lantern such as #85-87 are always worth getting at the right price/grade. Early key Conan books, especially Conan #1 and Savage Sword of Conan #1 are still affordable, and are starting to seem undervalued. Now may be the time to pick up early Ghost Rider appearances like Marvel Spotlight #5 again, as the character is experiencing a dip in popularity.|
|THREE RECENTLY HOT BOOKS (you may still be able to find Bronze cheap in the wild or get the silver at Overstreet price and do well):
THREE TO LOOK OUT FOR
In the last week or so an Amazing Fantasy #15 CGC 0.5 INCOMPLETE (though it looks like the stories, notably the Spidey story are complete) went on ebay for just shy of $5000. That puts it into the stratosphere as all-time comics go. Only the Golden age mega keys go for more than that money in that sort of condition… Hulk #1 seems to have doubled in price in 18 months or less. last relevant sales: A CGC universal 6.0 on ebay goes for $20000, 6.5 on Heritage auctions this month for $22705 with buyer premium!