Covering The Spread: Squad Goals Redux

Hello again, comic book investors!  It's been awhile since the last Covering The Spread.  But I'm ready to get back to business as usual.

Because I've been MIA with the move across the country I largely missed out on the news surrounding the new Suicide Squad film.  Just in case anyone else hasn't been paying attention so far, this is what we as speculators need to know:

The Facts:

1.) James Gunn will be writing, and most likely directing the new film.

2.) It will be called “The Suicide Squad” and is a reboot, and not a direct sequel.

3.) Several characters have been reported to be in the film already which we will discuss shortly.

4.) While it was initially reported that Idris Elba would be replacing Will Smith as Deadshot, the news is now that he will be playing a new character.

5.) John Cena is rumored to have been cast in the movie but they have not confirmed as which character.

6.) There is a lot of speculation about which characters will return from the previous film, but right now it seems like at the very least Jai Courtney will be back as Captain Boomerang.  No word yet on Margo Robbie, but she is under contract so I expect at least a cameo.

That's all we know so far.  I think this movie has a lot of potential as I have said in the past.  With the recent success of Shazam, I think signs point to DC finally righting the ship in the film department.  Despite my personal opinion on Aquaman, the movie was well received by the general public, which is great news for speculators.  I think with the increased success of this movies will come with a lot of investment opportunities in DC characters.

Superboy 9

 

As I mentioned there are several new characters rumored to be in the film and King Shark is one of them.  Right when the news broke this book this book made the Hot 10 by jumping up to a $15 book. Since then speculators seem to be too attached to Naomi to worry about speculating on little old things like movies.

There are a lot of people saying that John Cena will be playing Peacemaker in the film (We'll get to him in a bit) but I think his physique would make him a great King Shark.  If that rumor is confirmed any time soon I expect another big price bump for this book.

The Numbers:

Average Raw Price 9.47
10 Copies 94.68
Shipping Fees (EST) 100
Grading Fees (EST) 180
Selling Fees 55.10
Total Costs 429.78

9.8 Av Price 9.6 Av Price 9.4 EST Price 9.2  EST Price
114 61 30 20
2 Copies 3 Copies 4 Copies 1 Copy Total Value
228 183 120 20 551

Well the numbers here are interesting for a few reasons.  First of all I want to point out that the 9.4 and 9.2 prices here are estimates.  There are no completed sales in either grade.  Also I am only using the last three months of sales for graded copies because those are the relevant months since the news broke.

Raw prices have already fallen to below $10 each and there were even a couple sales under $4.  As I said it seems like most speculators have already moved on, which means now may be a good time to buy.

As it stands today we would have an upfront investment of $374.68 and expect profits of $121.23.  That's a spread of +12.12 and an ROI of about 32%.  Those aren't the most exciting numbers we've ever seen, but as I said the prices we used for 9.4 and 9.2 were only estimates.  I think the fact that there haven't been any sales in those grades is a signs that there aren't many graded copies on the market.

The census currently shows a total of 61 graded copies, with 44 9.8 and 10 9.6.  Of course there are probably copies that haven't hit the census that were graded after the news hit, but given how fast the market moves on these days there may not be many.  If this character is a success there won't be many graded copies to go around.

 

Detective Comics 585

 

Next up we have the first appearance of Ratcatcher.  This is another book the made the Hot 10 by reaching new heights of $30 for a NM copy.  According to Collider this character will be gender swapped for the film, but I don't think that will have an adverse affect on this issue as an investment.

The Numbers:

Well there has only been one 9.8 sold on eBay in the last two years.  It was well before the news broke at $70.  As far as raw issues are concerned they have fallen below the $15 mark on average.  This is another book that might have huge potential for graded copies.

The census shows a whopping 12 copies currently, with exactly half of those being a 9.8.  Again there are likely some copies that haven't hit the census yet, but this is a character that didn't even make the CGC's label.  If this character has some interesting casting or looks good in a trailer I think there will be a big scramble to buy all the graded copies available.

 

Action Comics 775Action Comics 775

 

I know what you're thinking.  What does this issue have to do with anything?  I don't blame you, I had to scour the internet to even find a usable copy of the cover.  This is the point in the article where we get into rampant speculation.

This issue is the first appearance of Manchester Black.  I know, I know who the hell is that?

The Theory

Well as I mentioned earlier we know that Idris Elba won't be playing Deadshot in the film.  My guess is that something in Will Smith's contract prevented the character from being recast.  At any rate there has to be some other character they brought him in to play.  So why Manchester Black?  Well credit where credit is due I heard this theory first on The Weekly Planet podcast (if you don't already listen you should).

Manchester Black is a DC comics character with a thick English accent who has history with the Suicide Squad.  He even made his first TV appearance in Supergirl late last year, although he was changed from his original comic character into a black British man who fights with guns, much like Deadshot.  The character did go on to gain his telekinetic powers in a later episode but the character could easily be adapted to focus more on conventional fighting methods for a Suicide Squad film.

Oh and did I mention that Black was also once lead a version of the Suicide Squad?  It seems entirely possible to me that DC pushed to put this character in Supergirl to help boost his profile before investing the money in a Suicide Squad film full of characters no one has heard of.

Think about it.  The marketing for the last film relied HEAVILY upon the Joker and Harley Quinn, despite the fact that the Joker was barely in the film.  I think that is because WB execs were afraid the movie would bomb if the marketing didn't show well known characters.  If Margot Robbie and Will Smith aren't coming back for the new movie they need some big names, and well known characters.

The Downside

Okay well I admit, a few appearances in the Supergirl TV show doesn't exactly make Manchester Black a household name.

There's also a matter of timing.  It was announced that Gunn would be writing The Suicide Squad in October of last year and Manchester Black made his Supergirl appearance in November.  That means filming was likely finished long before the October.  Of course Gunn and WB could have been negotiating behind the scenes for months.  They may also have still decided on the character as a replacement for Deadshot as soon as it was decided that Smith wasn't returning for the sequel.  Who really knows?

The Numbers

Did you really expect anything to be here?

There has been one sale on eBay recently for $16.05, but that's it.

Surprisingly though there are quite a few copies of this issue on the census, and even a few copies of the second printing.  Currently 59 9.8 and 45 9.6, which leads me to believe this isn't an easy 9.8.

 

Blue Beetle 3

 

The initial announcement by Collider specifically mentions that the characters name is Christopher Smith.  That could just be because Collider googled the character and that came up though.  Regardless as Clint Joslin pointed out Peacemaker didn't have that name until the character was reintroduced in this issue.

Plus I mean, let's face it, no one can really speculate on Charlton books from 1966.

It seems likely to me that the character in the film will be based on this version of the character.  The prices on eBay have certainly gone up recently, although I don't see any completed sales.  To me this feels more like one to keep an eye out for in back issue bins just in case.

Finally we have what I think will be the breakout star of the movie.

 

Detective Comics 300

 

Yes, I really think the best character in this movie will be Polka-Dot Man.  Did you think the talking Racoon and Tree would be everyone's favorite part of Guardians?  Well they are.

I know this isn't a book that many people will be sending off to get graded, but I think there will be very high demand for this book in any grade.  Prices seem to be all over the place and eBay has been pretty much wiped out.  If you see this one in ANY grade I suggest you grab it.  MCS was even able to sell a 1.5 for $35.  I think if you hold onto this one until the trailer comes out you'll be a happy man.

Wrap Up:

Well everyone that's all I've got for you this week.  I know this wasn't real heavy on the numbers but I really wanted to cover this subject.  I promise I'll get back into the deep dives next week.

But until then, who do you all think Idris Elba will be playing in The Suicide Squad?  Is Manchester Black a terrible guess? Who do you think will be the breakout character from the film? Let me know down in the comments below!

 

4 comments

  • Avatar

    Why is it surprising that there are a lot of copies of Action #775 in the Cgc census? The issue is regarded as a modern classic by many and has been reprinted many times. As you noted, the one completed sale was over $15, and that’s because of how well regarded it is. It’s not an issue people look to dump.

    • Avatar

      (And to be clear, I don’t like the issue. The issue a response to people concerned that Superman isn’t as good as the Authority, and it makes its argument poorly. Black, btw, is the gender-swapped, main DCU version of Jenny Sparks, who first appears in Stormwatch #37)

      • Avatar

        Perhaps you and I run in different circles but I’ve never heard it mentioned by any speculators. However I have heard a lot of people talking about King Shark. Even before the announcement that he would be in the movie but there are way less copies of that on the census.

        • Avatar

          Action #775 has been a popular comic pretty much since it released. No one cared about King Shark until he was in Secret Six circa 2010, hence the difference in the census.

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