Ever wonder what happened to those comics that were hot a year ago? Well, with ALL the sales data CovrPrice collects, you don’t have to. It’s time for another look back at how the hot comics in February of 2019 stood up against the test of time.
VARIANT – COMIC BOOK VALUES
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #667 1:100 Gabriele Dell’Otto Variant (Marvel, 2011)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: We chatted about this variant in our 2/25/19 Newsletter, when a raw copy hit a huge $8,500. As we mentioned then, this is the Dell’Otto book that skyrocketed the artist to his current popularity and has proven to be VERY hard to come by. Cut to February 2020 when an elusive CGC 9.8 sold for a massive $20,000! At that amount, one could buy this OR a Hulk #181 CGC 9.6 and still have $7k left over. Crazy sauce. However, whoever bought this obviously has the cash to simply buy both.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: ASM #667 is the king of modern books, period… not just in variants. What did we learn… well, not much. This book isn’t typical and the majority of us will probably never own it. However, it sure is fun to watch it sell when a copy does pop up.
GAME OF THRONES #17 Mile High Lucio Parillo Variant (Dynamite, 2013)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: Last year this sold for $104.78 as we headed into a highly anticipated last season of GAME OF THRONES. At its height, it hit $200 raw in June 2019. Raw copies have pretty much disappeared. However, CGC 9.8’s did pop up and had big asking prices. With GOT completed (as we’ve known it), it’s hard to say what this variant will do moving forward.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Timing is everything. The highest sale ever for this book sold at the peak of this show as it released the last season. A CGC 9.8 sold this past December 2019 for a surprisingly low price of $81. It looks like the bubble may have burst for this particular cover.
SCUD THE DISPOSABLE ASSASSIN #18 Variant (Fineman, 1997)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: Last year we mentioned how incredibly rare this variant is. On 2/11/19 this sold for a $220 raw. A copy recently sold in January 2020 for $61, though a copy sold in November 2019 for $125. So, while prices vary, that $220 sale still remains as the highest sale ever. As a reminder, Scud creator Rob Schrab’s long-time writing partner, Dan Harmon, wrote this particular issue. Dan is better known as the co-creator/ writer/ showrunner for the massively popular show, Rick & Morty. Rick & Morty fans, like ourselves, are obsessed with the series and are known to spill over into other connected Dan Harmon projects. Dan Harmon has even stated that the Rick & Morty character Mr. Meeseeks was inspired by this series. You can see a pre-Rick & Morty version called “Doc & Marty” (which became Rick & Morty) from 2008 that Harmon and Justin Roiland created to promote the book (watch here, mature audiences only)
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Rarity can hurt a book’s value when a book isn’t well known. A hard to find book like this has very scarce sales that buyers can’t use as a reference point to determine the current market value. Books like this will always vary depending on the buyer, how much they’re willing to spend, and how willing a seller is to accept that offer.
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: This time last year, a NM raw copy sold for $135. This is (arguably) one of the best Spider-Man 2099 variants. With his appearance in SPIDER-MAN: INTO THE SPIDER-VERSE film, this seemed primed for a price explosion… which it didn’t. This year, only two raw copies sold. One at $81 and a recent sale of $45. Nothing has been able to touch this book’s highest sale of $415.99 for a CGC 9.8 in June 2018.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Rarity and a nice variant don’t always move a book. We still think this has potential down the road as we get closer to SPIDER-VERSE 2. Let’s see what happens.
SUPERMAN BATMAN #8 Michael Turner SDCC virgin variant (limited to 1,000 copies) (Aspen, 2017)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: We mentioned this variant last year as it suddenly jumped in price and sold for $137 raw. This variant features reused interior art from this issue (Superman/Batman #8) by the late and great Michael Turner (R.I.P.). (FYI- This same image (different background) was also used in the highly sought after German Panini variant for SUPERMAN/ BATMAN #4.) Today, sales vary. However, the last raw sale in October 2019 was also the highest at $187. Strangely, CGC 9.8s only sell for $200 (though those have also dried up). Raw copies have dried up too, with only one on eBay for $175 and 17 watchers.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Sometimes buyers don’t make a ton of sense. However, how and when this book is listed can greatly change its market value. This cheap CGC 9.8 sold when there was a high supply of copies. Yet, the high priced raw sold when there was no supply. Just your good ol’ fashion supply & demand at play here.
SUPERMAN #75 PLATINUM (DC, 1992)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: We chatted about this variant in our 2/10/19 newsletter and briefly spoke about its important role in the history of comics. This limited to 10,000 copies variant was considerably rare compared to the standard cover’s million+ print run. Last year, a un-bagged NM raw copy sold for the highest ever at $299.99. A few months later, this book had its highest sale EVER with a CGC 9.8 at $745. A recent 9.8 sold for $404, so prices still vary. The most recent raw copy sold for $118. However, plenty of deals can be found out there.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Nostalgia books are big sellers lately. Worthless 1990 comics are seeing big spikes in price just as a reminder for those who were kids (or just younger) around a time when comics were ALL about big muscles, guns, pouches, terribly impractical capes/suits and new series after new series as “indie” books became mainstream. This Platinum variant will continue selling well and its next big sale is just around the corner.
KEY CLASSIC – COMIC BOOK VALUES
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: The first appearance of Stan Sakai’s beloved character Usagi Yojimbo sold a CGC 9.0 for $5,001, which was the highest ever for that grade last Feb. 2019. Over the past year, this book continued to hit new highs, like it’s CGC 9.8 sale in May 2019 for $31,000!
WHAT DID WE LEARN: This is a perfect example of Nostalgia driving an underutilized character like Usagi to higher and higher market values.
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: This classic Bill Sienkiewicz cover is incredibly tough to find in high grade. This all-black cover shows every flaw. With Bill’s constantly growing popularity AND Moon Knight’s growing popularity, this issue was growing in popularity. Last year, a CGC 9.8 sold for $700. That price remains the height for this issue as 9.8s sell today for $400. High-grade raw copies still hit decent amounts around $50.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Many sellers feel that a new high price is the official benchmark for a comic and will hold out for that same price at conventions or even an eBay listing. However, collectors can easily be scared off by a high price like last year’s $700 9.8. If a book hits TOO high, it can make a collector’s budget go elsewhere. Market values ebb & flow. 9.8s for this book will always see high amounts. Will it get back to $700? Sure, maybe when the Disney+ show launches.
MARVEL #1 (MARVEL, 1977)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: Last year, we were a month away from CAPTAIN MARVEL’S release (it feels like this came out years ago). While her first appearance was always a sought after book, it was this time last year when this issue just went insane. The average raw sale was getting $150 and moved a LOT of copies in both February & March. Slabbed market sales were higher in 2018 when the first trailer launched in September 2018.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: As we said before, timing is EVERYTHING. For example, in Feb. 2019, 106 raw copies sold. In Feb. 2020, 25 copies sold. And that $150 average raw price (for a mid-grade copy) fell down to $50 this year. A 9.8 would have cost you over $2K last year, where this year you can get one for a tad under $1K. That’s a pretty significant drop in value. You could have sold a 9.8 and rebought it this year and made a grand doing it. Right before (or right at) a character’s first film appearance is still the best time to sell.
SPECIAL MARVEL EDITION #15 (MARVEL, 1973)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: This issue features the first appearance of SHANG-CHI, MASTER OF KUNG FU. Marvel announced back in 2018 that they were developing the character, which led to its highest sale ever last year at $3,500 for a CGC 9.8. Even with no new news, that was beaten by a CGC 9.8 sale in August 2019 for $5,875.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Shang-Chi continues to spike in price. While it may not be a great time to buy, this book should still see a bump when a trailer hits.
TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES #1 2nd Print (MIRAGE, 1984)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: This rare 2nd print sold a CGC 9.8 at a massive $7,500 in Feb. 2019. Granted, 9.8s are incredibly rare and that was the only one to ever show up.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: While high prices might scare some sellers away… this book is a bit different. 9.8s for this just don’t show up. So, when one does… it’s now or never for that collector to grab it before it disappears into someone else’s collection. If sales are rare and you own the highest grade on the census for any book, you SHOULD be able to get top dollar.
CONTENT DRIVEN – COMC BOOK VALUES
ARCHIE’S MADHOUSE #22 (1962)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: Last year, this first appearance of Sabrina, The Teenage Witch sold a F/VF copy for $1,400 raw. The very successful Netflix series, “Chilling Adventures of Sabrina”, (and not to mention “Riverdale”) brought renewed attention to this hard-to-find book. One year later, raw copies have settled back down (though they’ve all been low-grade copies). However, in April 2019, this book had its highest sale ever at $3,349 for a CGC 7.0
WHAT DID WE LEARN: The trend seems to be pretty clear around content driven market fluctuations: values are highest around the first initial release and then begin dipping a month or two after. However, high-grade copies (raw or graded) continue to sell for a premium.
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: In Feb. 2019, this first appearance of Dr. Barbara Ann Minerva as the new Cheetah (played by Kristen Wiig in the upcoming WONDER WOMAN 1984 movie) spiked in value when Warne Brothers released a still image of Kristin as Dr. Minerva (not as Cheetah). That was enough to move copies. A CGC 9.8 sold at its highest ever for $350. Raw copies averaged around $26. Today, in Feb 2020, that sale remains the highest. Surprisingly, as we get closer to WONDER WOMAN 1984 values have plummeted with 9.8s selling for as low as $100.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Villain speculation is known to be poor speculation. Kristin Wiig as Cheetah has really turned collectors off from the character. If you believe in the film, she could be a surprise hit and drive prices back up for a bit. We’ll have to wait and see.
LAST SONS OF AMERICA (Boom)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: This book was optioned at Netflix this time last year. It’s set to star Peter Dinklage and produced by Matt Reeves (who has a first-look deal with Netflix). Prices jumped up to $15. However, with no new news one year later, prices have dropped below cover price, with most recent sales around $1.99 and CGC 9.8’s at $19.99.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Never buy upon an announcement. The smart play here is to wait and buy when prices fall back down.
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: This was also announced last February that HULU optioned this comic. It was hitting $22 for raw copies, though now sells for $5 to $12 raw. 9.8s, however, are still holding on and selling for a little over $100.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Sell upon announcement, buy a year later.
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: Last year, Netflix announced that this was in development with Charlize Theron. The main cover was hitting $20 and the Gold variant hit $50 raw and $175 in a 9.8. Today, raw copies are getting $10 (less in some cases) and the gold gets $20. Unlike most optioned projects, Netflix has kept up with news on this project, with their last update on a synopsis and full cast details this past January.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: The same as Motor Girl: Sell upon announcement, buy a year later. However, now’s a great time to buy as Netflix announced that this will release in 2020.
TALENT #1 (BOOM, 2006)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: TALENT was picked up at Fox with “Justified” Showrunner Graham Yost in Feb. 2019. Upon initial news, this was hitting $30. With the sale of Fox to Disney, there’s been no new news about this project. Hence, this book hasn’t sold a single copy since April 2019. This book can be picked up for under cover price today.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: LIke most optioned projects, there hasn’t been much news since that initial announcement, which absolutely kills a project. High profile projects with companies/studios that share updates will help a book retain its value.
UMBRELLA ACADEMY #1 (DARK HORSE, 2007)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: UMBRELLA ACADEMY was released on Netflix a year ago and turned the table on post-release aftermarket sales. It was a massive hit and pushed all the key Umbrella books to new heights. The FCBD first appearance hit a high of $540 for a 9.8 and now sells for $140, the #1 standard cover hit $450 for a CGC 9.8 and now goes for $100, the Gerard Way 1:10 variant hit a big $455 for 9.8 and sells today for $140. The RETAILER INCENTIVE (limited to 1,000) reached the highest of all back in Feb. 2019 with a CGC 9.9 sale of $2k and 9.8’s hit $1,200 that now sell for $600.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Even with big success like Umbrella had, what goes up must come down. These books hit crazy new heights and dropped sharply. A 2nd season is on the way, so now’s a great time to buy.
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: Thanks to a teaser image of actor Barry Keoghan as Yorrick Brown walking down an empty road, a CGC 9.8 sold for it’s highest price yet at $945… which was then beaten by a $1,250 9.8 sale in March. Raw copies were getting up to $400. One year later, the TV show lost its showrunners and their lead actor. With Keoghan’s replacement of actor Ben Schnetzer, things seem to be back on track for Y: The Last Man. FX seems determined to get this series going. However, all the uncertainty definitely hurt the market value, with the last 9.8 selling for $500 and raw copies selling for $100 to $200.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Sometimes TOO much news can end up hurting the market value if the project seems to hit roadblock after roadblock. If FX can’t get it together for this show, there are MANY companies waiting in the wings to grab this. It WILL eventually happen. This is one book that we feel confident buying into with prices so low.
NOTABLE MOVER & SHAKER – COMIC BOOK VALUES
DEAD MAN LOGAN #4 ZAFFINO 1:25 VARIANT (MARVEL, 2019)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: This was the HOT variant of February 2019. It sold 49 copies the first week of release (which is a ton for a 1:25 variant) and hit a high of $76 raw. One year later, copies sell for $35.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: HOT variants don’t always stay that way (even with such an awesome cover)
DEADPOOL #19 (MARVEL, 2010)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: Remember when everyone was talking about and hunting down Hit-Monkey key issues? An animated HULU series was announced the third week of February 2019, and Mr. Monkey’s first appearance in this issue just went ape-s…. bananas… it went bananas. This had a CGC 9.8 sell for $235 and a raw copy at $50. There was a bit of a debate about Hit Monkey’s 1st appearance. It seems Deadpool (2008) #19 was supposed to be his first appearance, but the book’s release was delayed until 2/17/2010. This allowed Hit-Monkey #1 One-Shot, released on 2/10/2010, to be the first released appearance of the character. Either way, both books heated up with the one-shot hitting $50. As recently as January 2020, Hulu Senior Vice President of Originals, Craig Erwich, confirmed at the Television Critics Association event that HIT-MONKEY & M.O.D.O.K. were still moving forward. In fact, he mentioned multiple episodes of M.O.D.O.K. were completed. However, it seems like the market has moved on as Deadpool #19 now sells for $5.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: The collecting market is fickle. The initial heat moved copies and hit its highest value ever upon announcement. Hit-Monkey still has the potential to take off.
DETECTIVE COMICS #854 (DC, 2009)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: This issue marks the first appearance of the CW’s BATWOMAN villain “Alice”. It moved a lot of copies last February, with raw copies selling for $15 and a 9.8 hitting $80. Prices have since dropped to $5.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: CW comic speculation is known to be one of the worst investments. The increase in market value has a VERY small window.
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: IMMORTAL HULK #12 released during the height of Immortal Hulk fervor. Seriously, Immortal Hulk was the hottest on-going title and each issue seemed to just print money. Immortal Hulk’s first appearance in AVENGERS #684 took off big time this month and moved a lot of copies (69 in one week). One week, Immortal Hulk had 6 spots within our CovrPrice Top 20. The IMMORTAL HULK #2 was the most valuable book for this series with the standard cover getting $130 raw. The Gerardo Zaffino 1:25 Variant took a little while for this variant to catch up to the heat of the standard Alex Ross cover. In January 2019, it was selling for $50 and then jumped to $200 raw by the end of February. It ended at a height of $300 raw and $1K for a 9.8. Values for the variant dropped significantly to $100 raw and $375 for a 9.8. However, the standard cover dipped as well and sells for $50 now.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Immortal Hulk had tons of momentum and had a decent run for a couple of months. However, as prices got too high and collectors moved on to other books.
THE INCREDIBLE HULK #449 (MARVEL, 1997)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: Last February, we had the first rumor of a possible THUNDERBOLTS TV show. Keep in mind, that this was MONTHS before the SDCC Disney+ MCU series announcements that lit up Marvel back-issues. This was a loose rumor that has continued to grow even stronger today. This hit a high sale of $299.99 for a CGC 9.8 and then jumped to $400 just a few months later. Prices have settled back to $300, which is still a solid holdover from the initial rumors.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: We’re still waiting for an official confirmation from Marvel on the introduction of The Thunderbolts into the MCU. It does seem likely, which has helped the market value hold. Once a confirmation happens, then this should see a new spike in price.
RAI #0 (ACCLAIM VALIANT, 1992)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: This first appearance of Bloodshot was super hot this time last year. The BLOODSHOT trailer hadn’t even hit yet and it was moving copies with NM raws selling for $40 and 9.8s hitting $350. With the film’s release upon us, 9.8s are selling for under $100, except for one MCS sale of $235. Raw copies are selling for $25.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: To see such a market dip right before a film’s release is not common. Is this lack of confidence in the film? Maybe the market is reacting as they have with TV properties, where they wait to see how good the film is before investing any more into Bloodshot… we’ll watch and see.
SILVER SURFER ANNUAL #6 (MARVEL, 1993)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: Last February, Jude Law was confirmed to be playing the role of Genis-Vell (it was unknown for months and wildly speculated on). This confirmation landed his first appearance in this issue on our CovrPrice TOP 10 list. It hit a crazy high sale of $50 for a raw copy. Today, it sells for $5.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Non-key MCU character appearances lose market value immensely fast. Tread lightly.
SPAWN #293 B&W ERROR VARIANT (IMAGE, 2019)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: Last year, when this book was released, it was the hottest book of the month and sold 194 in just the first week alone. Error books are hot. Spawn books are hot. Hot+Hot=Super Hot (this is science folks). While it sold for a modest $22, it moved a TON of copies. One year later, prices have pretty much held at $18.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: It was a Spawn AND an error book. It was pretty much a no brainer. However, with no official recall, there were plenty of copies available out there for all the Spawn collectors.
SUPERMAN/ BATMAN ANNUAL #4 (DC, 2010)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: Last month, we touched upon the BATMAN BEYOND film rumors that ran rampant through January and February 2019. It was debunked at the end of January 2019, yet sales progressed with a raw copy even hitting $69. One year later, this early Artgerm cover is still holding decent value at $40 to $50 for a NM raw.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Batman Beyond is a popular character. This issue is his first appearance in the core DC universe. Add the fact that Artgerm is VERY popular these days. This early cover of his can still be hard to find. Those factors continue to make this a solid pick-up, even if there’s no content.
TALES OF SUSPENSE #94 (MARVEL, 1967)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: As we mentioned under DEADPOOL #19 for HIT-MONKEY, an animated M.O.D.O.K. series was announced for HULU. Post MCU’s Disney+ announcement, Marvel killed HULU projects like HOWARD THE DUCK and TIGRA & DAZZLER. However, it was announced this past January that M.O.D.O.K. is still moving forward and already has multiple episodes completed. However, last year the announcement took raw copies from $20 to $50 and even $230 for a NM copy. Today, copies go for about $20 and higher grade copies at $50.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Most folks forgot about this HULU series. Despite things moving forward with the M.O.D.O.K. series, values still dropped. Like many books we mentioned above, never buy upon an announcement. There will be opportunities to buy at a much lower price months later.
THESE SAVAGE SHORES #1 (VAULT, 2018)
1 YEAR OVERVIEW: It’s amazing how fast a year goes. Last Feb., this issue was hot out of the gate and hit a high sale of $75 raw! This quick rise in price upon release was directly tied to unconfirmed rumors of a film option… that never materialized. THESE SAVAGE SHORES #1 2nd print (Vault, 2018) is an awesome homage to TOMB OF DRACULA#1 that also did really well at $90 raw. The first print dropped big time to $10, though the 2nd print held up well and sells for $50.
WHAT DID WE LEARN: Looking at all the books that were hot last year, very few survived the year. Collectors seem to be trying to keep up with the current market heat, leaving books like this in the dust.
Written By: Matt DeVoe | [email protected]
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