WEEK IN REVIEW

April 8th, 2022

Welcome to COVRPRICE’s Weekly Market Report!

Last weekend, we had a great time at WonderCon and forged some great relationships. This week it was back to business and bringing you some of the biggest SHAKERS of the week. This week we cover the hottest sales of the week, some of which are in emerging markets like NFT comics. We showcase some books to track down, some cheap books that sell big in 9.8s, and even a tumbler, a recent hot book that plummeted in value. As always, these are pulled directly from our daily SHAKERS list. If you’re not checking out the shakers list every day, you’re missing out. They’re there one day and refreshed the next. Enjoy and have a happy weekend!


 

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COMIC BOOK SHAKERS

Every day CovrPrice’s Daily Shaker List calls out comics with the highest sales value sold that day. Throughout the week we pull the more interesting ones and elaborate on them here. Check out our sweet Shaker List here.

 

SHAKER: B.P.R.D. HELL ON EARTH #115 – MIKE MIGNOLA VARIANT | DARK HORSE | 2013

By Matt DeVoe

A 1:20 incentive for a big publisher like Marvel or DC is pretty common and relatively easy to qualify for. However, for an indie series like Hellboy, or especially BPRD, that 1:20 can become impossible to find. Back in 2014, shops were still ordering very conservatively. Typically, books like this would only be ordered for pull customers with a few to put on the shelf. However, twenty copies of any indie series was a monthly cost that shops didn’t need. This, in turn, made this mid-ratio incentive into a true ghost that is now hitting new high sales of $295 for a raw copy. Note that Dark Horse doesn’t plaster “variant” all over their exclusive covers, so many of these often fly under the radar as “just another Hellboy book.” Keep an eagle eye out there when digging in the dark horseback issues.

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SHAKER: DREAMWALKER #0 | AVATAR PRESS | 1998

By Matt DeVoe

This indie favorite by the incredible Eric Powell has been stuck in content development hell for years. A few years ago, there was some new news about an animated series. However, there’s been no further information on that in quite a while. Content or not, this is still a very highly desired (and hard to find) book, as seen by this week’s all-new high raw sale of $850. GOON’s first appearance in this issue is within a short 4-page backup story. Note that this was only in the 1st print as subsequent printings omitted the short story. Dark Horse horse has also reprinted this cover with their logo (in place of the AVATAR logo) and can easily be mistaken for the original first. This is a fun one to hunt for in the wild as it flies under the radar of most retailers due to its very unconnected cover. If you want to dig even deeper, there’s a Goon prototype that pre-dates this issue within BEST CELLARS #1, where Eric Powell had a story entitled Monster Boy. Enjoy that collector’s rabbit hole.

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SHAKER: BILL & TED’S EXCELLENT COMIC BOOK #1 | MARVEL | 1991

By Matt DeVoe

Here’s a fun gap book that we didn’t know about until it sold its first CGC 9.8 this week at $445. Keep in mind that high-grade raw copies sell for a whopping $8, leaving some room for those that seek out books with high profit attached. And sure, who knew that Bill & Ted’s first comic book would be one of them. Like everything else, nostalgia is a key driver for books like this. With only eight 9.8’s on the census, this isn’t a book commonly graded. However, if you come across a cheap NM copy, pick it up!

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SHAKER: GHOST RIDER #1 – NEAL ADAMS (1:50) | MARVEL | 2011

By Matt DeVoe

This issue is also the first appearance of Alejandra Jones, who took up the Ghost Rider Mantle in 2011. However, it’s Neal Adams perfected cover of Ghost Rider that makes this one highly desired variant. However, being a 1:50 from 2011 makes this one of the modern variant elite. This week a raw sale hit a huge new high of $1,320, beating the previous raw heights of $1K in 2020.

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SHAKER: GHOST RIDER #81 | MARVEL | 1983

By Yves Navant

Johnny Blaze’s last ride as Ghost Rider (for a while) just sold for $100, raw. In this issue Johnny Blaze is separated from Zarathos, the demon to which he was bonded and the source of his hellish powers. Johnny would next appear without powers in a couple of issues of the Defenders and Amazing Spider-Man. After those two powerless appearances, we don’t see Johnny again until 1990’s spectacular Ghost Rider relaunch by Howard Mackie and the phenomenal Javier Saltares and Mark Texeira. Ghost Rider #81 wasn’t written or drawn by those guys, though, so you know… canceled. It was, however, written by JM DeMatteis, who is pretty great. Have you read Spider-Man: Fearful Symmetry (Kraven’s Last Hunt)? If not, find it right now and read it. You’re welcome. Back to the Spirit of Vengeance, the end of this run was followed by a seven-year absence and a Marvel without a Ghost Rider till the 1990 relaunch. We often tell you this, but final issues can get pretty expensive and sought after. The end of a series’ print runs are usually lower due to a lack of sales. When no one seems to want your book, you manufacture fewer of them. But, when that character experiences any kind of resurgence, that scarce last issue can become an integral part of a collection.

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SHAKER: OMEGA THE UNKNOWN #1 | MARVEL | 1976

By Yves Navant

Do you remember Omega the Unknown? Someone does, and they just paid $999.99 for a CGC graded 9.8 copy of his first issue and first appearance. Omega was the unconventional creation of Steve Gerber, Mary Skrenes, and Jim Mooney. The book’s focus was an unusually sophisticated 12-year boy named James-Michael Starling, who dreams of a superhuman man escaping robot captors. James and his parents move to the big city after raising James-Michael in rural seclusion. Before making it to New York, James-Michael’s parents are killed in a car crash, but are they his parents? Probably not, cause they were secretly robots all along, as the collision reveals. James wakes from a coma following the crash, only to be attacked by the robots he had dreamt of, but the superhuman adult from the same dream comes to his defense. At the crescendo of this first conflict, 12-year-old James-Michael is the hero, destroying the robot with newly discovered energy blasts projected from his hands. Puberty hits us all differently, I guess. Omega is a cult classic because it had an edge not seen in many Marvel books at the time; the kid was the clear star with Omega showing up unexpectedly. Was James-Michael dreaming the hero into existence? Were they somehow related? The suspense is killing me! Throughout Omega’s 10 issue run, James-Michael remains a little weirdo, coldly detached from the world around him, but dealing with racism, bullying, and the New York Public School system. He’s also fostered by two young women in Hell’s Kitchen. This can itself be interpreted as pretty pioneering storytelling for 1976. Before the big mystery of James-Michael and Omega can be resolved, the series was canceled due to low sales. Steve Gerber, Omega’s writer, promised readers he’d conclude the story in Defenders, which he was also writing. Whelp, Steve was fired by Marvel before he could conclude Omega’s story. The writer who replaced Gerber on the Defenders wrapped up the story by killing all relevant characters, which was undoubtedly concise. Omega has been brought back a few times for Marvel’s Darkhold crossover. Omega remains a cult favorite, an underdog of Marvel’s 70’s cosmic heroes, and this week someone loved the character enough to set a new record-high sale for his first issue.

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SHAKER: PUNKS #1 | PIXEL VAULT | MAY 10, 2021

By Matt DeVoe

Punks #1 was an NFT comic released on May 10th, 2021. Created by the artist Beanie and the NFT company Pixel Vault, it cost 0.2 ETHEREUM (roughly USD 720) to purchase one of these digital comics, limited to a serial numbered edition of 1 in 10,000. Buyers would then receive an NFT of the cover and a readable 24-page copy to download. The first 5,000 original minters who received a PUNKS Comic Issue #1 received a PUNKS Comic Issue #2 for free, which is also quite valuable in the NFT space. Writer Josh Blaylock created the comic with Marvel and DC comic artists Christ Wahl and Odius. Now, this is where it gets confusing; the buyer then has the option to “burn” or “stake” their NFT. Burning is the process of permanently removing a token from circulation, and staking is a “new way to earn passive income in the crypto world. It lets NFT holders lock their assets in DeFi platforms to receive rewards. All without the need to sell their NFT collections.” Staking this comic gains you tokens over a 24 month period and fractional ownership. Users who burn their NFT receive, in exchange, an exclusive and limited Founder’s DAO, which gives them ownership of $PUNKS tokens and other crypto assets. There’s WAY more to this than we can cover. But in short, if you burn your NFT, you lose the ability to exchange your digital token for a physical copy. Those buyers who didn’t burn their NFT had the additional option to claim a physical copy. This was in addition to the NFT. However, it could be claimed during a specific claim window, which would not reopen. In January, the Punk #1 NFT was worth about USD 9,000, and its all-time average is around $4,483 and has a current value of approximately $1,350. However, and where we’re trying to get here, the first physical comics were sold on eBay for $2,300 & $2,126 raw this week. So, basically, that initial $720 investment is worth well over $3K, with that NFT still potentially fluctuating back up in value. While this is a rough and abbreviated breakdown, this is a rapidly emerging market that should no longer be ignored. You can read all about the specifics on Pixel Vault’s website.

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SHAKER: PUSHING DAISIES – TIM SALE | DC | 2007

By Matt DeVoe

In 2007, ABC brought two promotional comics to the 2007 San Diego Comic-Con for their new show, Pushing Daisies, staring Lee Pace (who’s been in everything nerd related). Typically, these books were nothing to keep. Promotional comics were marketing material to get you to watch the show. However, many reported that the comic was quite good, and there was, at one time, a planned ongoing comic book series. While that never happened, these comics have become VERY tough to find and, therefore, quite collectible. This week, the Tim Sale cover sold for a new high of $150. So yeah, maybe keep every free book handed to you during conventions… just in case.

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TUMBLER: RWBY #7 | DC | 2020

By Matt DeVoe

We covered this book in the 2/18/22 Market Report when the first copy to hit eBay sold raw for a crazy high of $1,800. We mentioned how due to low sales, the manga series RWBY was canceled at issue #7, along with issues #6 & 7 of GEN: LOCK. Since they were completed, both series were offered up digitally only. However, RWBY #7 and GEN: LOCK #6 were reportedly printed and held in Diamond Comic Distributor warehouses in May 2020. We noted that it was unknown what happened to those two issues, though copies of GEN: LOCK #6 started popping up for sale on sites like eBay in March 2021, hitting a high of $200 raw. If you haven’t been paying attention to this book in the past couple of weeks, it has fallen hard to an FMV of $66. The obvious question is, why? Well, remember we asked where those printed copies at Diamond went? Well, we have our answer. Many have reported these showing up in DC Walmart multi-packs. Of course, those lucky folks who found a copy turned to online sources to potentially make a huge profit only to find the market is now saturated with copies. This sudden abundance of copies burst that rare bubble, and sellers competitively priced their copies to meet the fair market value that buyers were now willing to pay. A book like this is a perfect example of overpaying on an unconfirmed rarity. Keep in mind that $66 is still a pretty great price for this book. It’s just obviously not $1,800. 

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SHAKER: SHOWCASE #34 | DC | 1961

By Ryan Forster

Last week, we spotlighted Tales to Astonish #27 in our Weekly Market Report. This week, with spikes on Showcase #34, we had to revisit Ant-Man once again. Ant-Man may now be a popular Marvel mainstay thanks to the MCU, but it’s hard to ignore his similarities to DC’sDC’s The Atom. In typical DC fashion, The Atom made his silver age first appearance in Showcase #34, quite a few months prior to Hank Pym first showing up in Tales to Astonish #27 (and in his costume in issue #35), but this equally tiny genius doesn’t command nearly the same value. Regardless, he seems to be getting a little more attention recently as there was a record sale in grade this week of $1,740 for a CGC 7.0, a jump of $594 or 52% above the prior record of $1,146 from just one month previous. Now to be fair, if a CGC 7.0 copy of Tales To Astonish #27 came up for sale today, it would likely sell in excess of $15,000, given that a 5.5 recently sold for $16,800. But maybe DC will see the potential in this character and eventually move him to the Silver Screen and give him a proper seat on the Justice League as he deserves.

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SHAKER: SPAWN #189 – TODD MCFARLANE – B&W | IMAGE | 2009

By Matt DeVoe

It’s well known that Spawn variants are some of the hottest high-priced variants in the aftermarket. This B&W cover by Todd McFarlane has risen to the top of that pile in the past couple of years. In May 2021, this hit a new high sale of $4,876 for a CGC 9.8. However, this week it hit a new high raw sale of $1,550. Sit back and continue to watch this grow.

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SHAKER: SPIDER-GIRL #1 – ERROR | MARVEL | 1998

By Matt DeVoe

Spider-Girl #1 is a fun first issue to the ongoing fan-favorite May “Mayday” Parker series. Typically, a high-grade raw copy sells for $30, with 9.8s at $125. But what happens when there’s a genuine distinguishable error that’s not widely known? Well, it sells for $1,100 in a 9.8, as we saw this week. The error in this book is that the cover was printed without cyan ink, giving it an overall (and noticeable) pink hue. While the seller notes this as a 1 of 1 copy, there is a reasonable likelihood of more error copies. Granted, since this is the first time even we have seen this error, it’s not going to be easy to find. Now that we know this exists, it’s one we’re going to be looking out for!

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SHAKER: SUPERMAN’S GIRL FRIEND, LOIS LANE #106 | DC | 1970

By Yves Navant

This week a CGC graded 9.0 copy of this book sold for $1,320, a new record high. Lois Lane, Metropolis’ star reporter and herself a formidable character, had her own eponymous title, albeit name dropping her super-boyfriend, for 137 issues, from 1958 to 1974. The run featured some fascinating concepts, including this topical issue regarding race. DC had a… complicated relationship with race. Their initial attempt at creating a black character was the Black Bomber, a white racist Viet Nam vet who had been exposed to an experimental Agent Orange type gas intended to camouflage soldiers. The gas forced a physical change in the white bigoted soldier in times of stress, transforming him into the Black Bomber- a black superhero in what looked like a basketball uniform. I swear. I am 100% not making this up, guys. Why don’t you remember this character? Why hasn’t DC apologized once a month for 50 years? Tony Isabella, who would later create the pretty rad Black Lightning, was offered the character and the first two in-production Black Bomber scripts. Mr. Isabella served as the voice of reason, convincing DC to scrap the idea entirely. (Dwayne McDuffie snuck a sardonic Black Bomber-Esque easter egg into his Justice League run that DC also censored, look for it, and the dialog DC removed. It’s pretty scathing) Okay, this was all plot exposition, explaining that DC was seemingly not as responsibly forward-thinking as Marvel (creating the first black superhero who also happened to be a king, the Black Panther, and the Falcon, who shared Captain America’s title and co-headline billing for a decade). This issue of Lois Lane was, well… it’s considered blaxploitation. In the well-intended story, Lois Lane uses a Kryptonian machine to transform herself into a black woman in order to write an exposé on the black female experience. And in this story, the black experience includes tenements, drug dealers, and shootings. Racism in 1970s America was complicated and harrowing, the country having recently experienced the emergence of the civil rights movement and attempts at integration. In 2022, issues of race and equality are once more at the forefront of America’s conscience. This issue is, quite frankly, a massive moment in the comic medium’s depiction of racial awareness and representation. The historical and cultural relevance of the issue, the story within, and the use of beloved comic characters to tell the tale to explain this week’s new record sale.

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SHAKER: TAROT #4 – MOONEY VARIANT | MARVEL | 2020

By Matt DeVoe

When it comes to the TAROT series, the gorgeous David Nakayama Scarlet Witch 1:50 variant for the first issue was THE GO-TO variant for this series. However, this Silver Surfer 1:50 variant by Stephen Mooney has now taken the crown with a 9.8 sale at $700 for a CGC 9.8. Keep in mind that this series was highly under-ordered, with an estimated print run of 11,898 (per Comichron). Stores were not buying 50 copies by the fourth issue, making this one VERY scarce variant, hence this week’s huge price bump. 

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SHAKER: TOMB OF TERROR #15 | HARVEY | 1954

By Ryan Forster

It may not be anywhere close to Halloween, but there were some major Pre-Code Horror (PCH) books that sold this week. One of those huge sales that blew our minds was a sale for the classic “exploding face” cover from Harvey Publications. A CGC 3.5 copy of Tomb of Terror #15 sold for $6,000, beating out the prior high in grade from January of 2021 by $1,000. Harvey was just pumping out these classic covers in the early 1950s, including Black Cat Mystery Comics #50 and Chamber of Chills #19, to name a few, and over the last 1-2 years, the demand for them has just been skyrocketing. This trend doesn’t seem to be slowing down as there were other records this week for huge PCH keys, including Punch Comics #12, with a CGC 2.5 selling for $22,800, and Mister Mystery #13, with a CGC 7.0 selling for $5,040.

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SHAKER: VOODOO ANNUAL #1 | FARRELL | 1952

By The Professor

Last week another exciting sale from the Pre-Code Heritage online auction was Voodoo Annual #1. This issue rarely comes up for auction, with only about 11 unrestored copies having done so in the past 20 years! One of the interesting aspects of this comic is it features interior art and stories by Matt Baker. Although prolific in his contributions to comic book art in the 1940s and 50s, he worked on fewer horror-related comic titles than non-horror-related ones (he is more widely known for his “good girl” art than anything else). Further, this particular issue is a square-bound “giant-size” 100-page issue with a predominantly black cover. Those characteristics make this a challenging book to get in any reasonable grade (not to mention unrestored). Last week, the copy available on the Heritage Auctions was an unrestored CGC 2.5, which sold for $2,040. The other reported sales include a CGC 4.0, which sold for $4,440 in November 2021, and a beautiful CGC 7.5 copy that sold for a massive $19,200 this past January – also on Heritage.

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SHAKER: THE WALKING DEAD #2 – 2ND PRINT | IMAGE | 2004

By Matt DeVoe

This immensely hard-to-find 2nd print is high on their list among Walking Dead collectors. It’s not your typical subsequent print that shows in the UPC. The only notable difference between this and the first print is the month on the cover. The first print displays NOV, whereas the 2nd print features FEB, which can be found next to the price box. While sought after, this printing has always sold for MUCH less than the first print. The first print has a high sale of $2,150 in a 9.8. However, this week, the 2nd print sold for $2K in a 9.8, a new all-time high.

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SHAKER: X-23 #1 GABRIELE DELL’OTTO 1:25 | MARVEL | 2010

By DiodeLad

Wow, Gabrielle Dell’Otto killed it with this 1:25 incentive variant for X-23 #1 from 2010, Laura Kinney’s 2nd solo series. We saw a big sale of $2,500 for a CGC 9.8 of this variant (note that this sale is being inaccurately reported elsewhere as $3,500). 9.8 slabbed copies regularly sell for over $2,000, but this was the largest sale since last April when a copy sold for $2,600. The issue opens with an explosive dream sequence, but this is not an action comic. Instead, writer Marjorie Liu focuses on character development, building out X-23 as a complex emotional character in the context of the X-Men team, something more than a new Weapon X. Emma Frost says it clearly: “We never gave her a chance. We treated her exactly as her handlers would have. Like a weapon. A thing to be used. She’s always been used.” But 2010 was a long time ago, and collectors seem to be giving X-23 a chance now. PS: If you are in the market for this variant, be aware that Unknown Comics used this art as a virgin cover for X-Men Red #1 from 2018.

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RUMORED/OPTIONED COMICS

RUMORED/OPTIONED: THE CROW

Per The Hollywood Reporter, “Bill Skarsgard to Star in ‘The Crow’ Reboot, Rupert Sanders Directing. After years of stop and go, the new iteration of the 1994 supernatural actioner is on the runway, and production is slated to begin in June.” For us Crow fans, this is VERY exciting news. It also will make long-term Crow collectors very happy and potentially some significant returns in their decades-long patience. 

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RUMORED/OPTIONED: PARANORMAL HITMEN

Deadline reports that “eOne Developing’ Paranormal Hitmen’ TV Series Based On Comic Books By Brett Murphy & Wilson Gandolpho.” Copies of this series’ first issue are currently trending at $15.

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WHAT THE WATCHER IS WATCHING

WATCHING: AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #10 | MARVEL | 2014

We’ve mentioned this multiple times, but now’s the time to pick up Spider-Punk’s first appearance. With solid rumors of Punk appearing in SPIDER-MAN: ACROSS THE SPIDER-VERSE and the recent release of his first ongoing series, there’s just a rapidly growing aura of excitement around the character. We’re watching this book closely.

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KEY COMIC OF THE WEEK

KEY OF THE WEEK: MARVEL ALL-NEW POINT ONE NOW MCNIVEN 1:75 | MARVEL | 2014

By DiodeLad

Sales of this comic have been all over the place, which might reflect an inconsistent enthusiasm for Kamala Khan’s forthcoming portrayal on the screen. Perhaps this cover, in particular, doesn’t show Ms. Marvel, as the 1st Print Cover A does. For whatever reason, prices fluctuate widely. For example, last week, even as Kamala Khan MCU news was rampant, we saw a sale of $1,850 for a graded 9.6, down from a high of $3,000 in December. And the most recent 9.8 sales span a similarly inconsistent range, from $2,800 to $5,000. But make no mistake, this is a high ratio variant of a big key. Not only does Kamala Khan make her first full appearance as Ms. Marvel, but several characters around Khan, such as her best friend, mom, and brother, also appear for the first time in these pages. There are also other key stories in this volume. For example, in a different story, Dawn Greenwood — cosmic travel companion of the Silver Surfer (come on, Surfer fans, back me up here!) — makes her first appearance.

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