Auction Highlights #53 – ComicLink March 2011

ComicLink March Focused Auction

The ComicLink March Focused Auction has just ended. This time around I want to focus on a “Tale of Two Comics”. Amazing Spider-Man #1 (ASM  #1) and Journey into Mystery #83 (JIM #83) are two comics heading in opposite directions. Luckily a 9.0 Off White page copy of each has just sold on ComicLink providing us a good spanshot of the current situation.

Amazing Spider-Man #1, Marvel Comics (March 1963) Graded by CGC at 9.0 with Off White pages sold for $31,000.00 on ComicLink on March 22nd.  Overstreet price guide value for this comic at 9.0 is $31,750.00. Below guide! I’ve always had mixed feelings about ASM #1. Here is the first issue of what is surely Marvel’s flagship title and what is probably the most collected title in the hobby. Unlike Hulk #1, Fantastic Four #1 and Tales of Suspense #39 where the 1st appearance also represents the first issue in the run, ASM #1 represents Spidey’s second appearance. Amazing Fantasy #15 (AF #15) is the book to own for serious collectors and Spidey fans but it is agonizingly disconnected from the main run. I’d say an August 1962 Amazing Spider-Man #1 would be even more of a prize than the current reailty. So what’s a second appearance that launches the most collected title in comics worth? Ten years ago in the Overstreet Comic Book Price Guide #31 ASM #1 was the second most valuable Marvel holding 71.4% of AF #15’s high grade value. Today ASM #1 is the 4th most valuable Marvel (Fantastic Four #1 and Hulk #1 have rightfully surpassed it) and it now only holds 50% of AF #15’s high grade value. So I’m not surprised to see a high grade copy sell for below guide, I think this the appropriate correction for this book. The question is when will ASM #1 stop loosing ground? I think it has just a bit more to give up. Looking at the 3 Marvel books that are today listed below ASM #1’s value we have X-Men #1, Tales of Suspense #39 and Journey into Mystery #83, all are currently at about 50% of ASM #1’s 9.2 value. OK I’ll make a call that within a decade it will be Tales of Suspense #39 that is knocking on ASM #1’s doorstep in terms of value. A decade ago TOS #39 held 20% of ASM #1’s value while today it holds half. ASM #1 will continue to loose relative ground. That is not to say ASM #1 still does not have room to appreciate, in fact I think it can eventually trade at 40k and above in the 9.0 grade. This is not a glamorous pick up but despite all my gloom and doom above it still has some room to appreciate and it is a sound pick up and a good long term investment. Advantage buyer.


Journey into Mystery #83, Marvel Comics (August 1962) Graded by CGC at 9.0 with Off White pages sold for $42,055.00 on ComicLink on March 23rd. Overstreet price guide value for this comic at 9.0 is $16,250.00. This sale represents over 2.5 times guide. Thor is all the rage with the big movie hitting theatres this spring and the market is hot for this book. How much of this price is attributed to the hype is not clear but my thoughts are that the hype has helped this book considerably. I will say that I am not high on this book long term. I’ve always felt the adaptation of a Norse mythology god for comics was a great idea, (Fox Comics used Thor in the 40s and DC Comics used Thor in the 50s) but I do not think such an adaptation merits the value put on this book. Above I picked Tales of Suspense #39 to eventually threaten ASM #1’s value ahead of JIM #83 for this reason, even the X-Men #1 comic suffers because of the disconnect between the old and the new team. TOS #39’s Iron Man is an original character who’s popularity will continue to grow. I am going to say that over time Marvel’s version of Thor will be seen as just that, Marvel’s version of Thor.   Advantage seller.

Walter Durajlija
Walter Durajlija

Walter Durajlija is an Overstreet Advisor and Shuster Award winner. He owns Big B Comics in Hamilton Ontario.

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