Lone Wolf & Cub Retailer Incentive

Lone Wolf and Cub is a wonderful manga series that has come to North America twice: prestige format comics from First Publishing in the 1980s and in twenty eight 4.25×6.5″ softcover volumes from Dark Horse.

For anyone who hasn’t sampled this series go now and grab a paper or digital copy.  It’s an engrossing story of a ronin and his son best summed up by the tagline on the original ad poster: “he cut a bloody path of vengeance across a nation of samurai”.

To celebrate the initial decent orders of the first volume in 2000 Dark Horse created a retailer incentive: a red hardcover version with a signed and numbered plate.  The beauty of a signed and numbered edition is we know how many were produced: 230.  Unfortunately the indices is for the regular softcover volume and no ISBN number so we don’t know when this was published but it must have been 2001 at the latest.

I was able to pick up this copy at Montreal Comiccon 2011 for $15.  The retailer had three in a pile but this was the only one with the signature plate: the others were identical otherwise.  Scouring the internet turns up a good number of copies without the signature plate which leads me to believe Dark Horse had two releases of this volume, with and without.  In 2010 Dark Horse ran a contest on Facebook offering this volume as a prize, only commenting it was a “limited edition”.

Neither volume seems to hold much value, with online prices varying wildly between $50 and $300 on eBay but no completed auctions.  I couldn’t find this book at all on AbeBooks and Amazon.com listed $50 but no stock.  Lone Wolf and Cub Volume 1 Retailer Incentive numbered edition is a fairly obscure and rare collectible for the comic or manga fan.

Scott VanderPloeg Written by:

Editor-In-Chief. Scott works in I.T. but lives to eat and read. His other ramblings can be found at eBabble. Art collection at Comic Art Fans. Joe Shuster Awards Harry Kremer coordinator.

Subscribe to CBD via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe and receive notifications of new posts by email.

6 Comments

  1. Ed Campbell
    September 29, 2011

    A friend of mine introduced me to Lone Wolf and Cub when I was in college. He saw me reading an X-Men comic and told me he had some cool ones to read. The next time I went to his place he handed me the stack of comics. If I remember right (this was 17 something years ago)he was only missing a couple of the 28 issue run.

    I was blown away by the art of the comic. I don’t remember all the stories, but I do remember the one panel where the villain was cut in half, but before he was bisected his last word was “excellent”.

    All these years have gone by, I still remember that panel. Scott, you picked up an awesome book for a great price.

  2. Stanley Jon
    September 29, 2011

    I think that panel came from issue 3 from the First Publishing run. The story was called The Gateless Barrier. He was paid to “kill the Buddha” who was a Buddhist monk loved by the people. That was him killing the monk. Not my favourite Lone Wolf and Cub story but, as you said, a very memorable panel.

  3. Ed Campbell
    September 29, 2011

    Stanley, thanks for the correction. It’s been a long time since I read it. I hope I’ll get a deal like Scott and pick up the collection for a great price in the future.

  4. Arbel Ratzin
    October 2, 2011

    this manga is just awesome. it is smart, beautiful, well-written and full of action. get “shogun assassin” (the movie) that was based on the characters. there is also a tv show from back in the 70’s if i’m not mistaken. SLASH!

  5. Theresa
    June 19, 2012

    I have a near complete set of the 1987 lone wolf and cub series in very fine condition (13,14,15,16,21,22,23,26,27,28 and 37 still in sealed clear wrap package with mailing sticker) and I am missing 9,34,39 thru 42. I do have 43 thru 45, however. Does anyone know where would be the best place to sell them? I have a sense of how much they are worth individually, but, I am not sure if there is a worth as a set or if I really have enough copies to sell them as a set. I would really appreciate some feedback and advice on how and where to sell them.

Make It Good.