Picked this one up today at the Niagara Falls Comic Con. An awesome 9.2 that looks more like a 9.4. And on top of that, Neal Adams, the artist of this cover, was there. Chatted him with a bit and bought a reprint book of Deadman stories from Strange Adventures, which he signed. This was my third meeting with him at a show. Also, for the first time, a finally met Jim Steranko here today. Very nice guy. Anyways, enjoy.
It's been awhile since my last Journal post. My last post was made May 22, 2015. This is my first journal post under the new format, I haven't decided if I like it or not. It's alot easier to use that's for sure, It reminds of the dashboard in WordPress. I've been collecting on & off over the last 3 years, Meeting media guests on cons & still getting signatures from my favorite artists & writers. Everyone collects differently & I'm a signature kinda guy ( For the most part ). I've changed my screen name to something that made more sense for me. Going forward I've decided I want to be a more focused collector, Putting books into the collection that I "Really" like or love. I just recently started to put books into the CGC Registry again.
In May of 2015 I finally got to meet Neal Adams for the first time. He is probably one of my favorite artists of all time. The experience was education for the first time I felt he was kinda stand standoffish, But I got used to it since I've now met him on more than one occasion. I had him sign my copy of Green Lantern #87 that I bought at my LCS in the mid 90's.
Thanks for reading & Happy collecting & have a great 2018!!
Hello It's been a little while since I've done a journal. A lot has changed, also a lot has stayed the same First off I would like to say thank you to CGC for their part in providing one of the best convention experience I've ever had! As a comic collector, for me when books are graded it is the final step of the journey of my books. I love the signature series program, and getting yellow labels is the cherry on top. Blue labels are awesome too and I enjoy having them both. This convention was the culmination of many different factors. I have my first set of books on the way back from CGC so I thought now would be the perfect time to share my experience. My 2018 Wondercon experience actually began in 2017...
I have alway been a superhero kinda guy , that is until I was introduced to Warren Horror mags.
Now I have always appreciated Frank Frazetta, but I always thought this book was outta my reach.
I mean there's not a ton of these out there in high grade, but through crazy luck a board member told me about one for sale.
Board member October sold me this beauty, and I know I've shown it off before . Just wanted to get it in with my other Warren books.
Vampirella 1 to me is the Action 1 of horror mags , and I am proud to have this book in my collection.
Here is the very rare in any grade Vampirella U.K. 1-4
Just won this in the Comic Link auction. Probably the hardest one to find in high grade among the Kree/Skrull war issues, due to the black picture frame cover. Although here we take a detour from that storyline, as our heroes battle the mandroids. Surprised to see that my winning bid was under $250. Six more Adams books to go. Enjoy.
I submitted the form, and shipped the following 8 books to CGC today... Modern slow. Had to use my credits up for the year before membership expire/renewal.
Anyway I'm creating this journal so others can guess the grades from the scans, and will post them once they have been returned.. We will see
Just bought this one on ebay. Ten years of waiting to acquire this super tough book. Third times the charm I guess. On two previous listings of this book on ebay, over the last two and a half years, I did not have the funds to buy it now. Needless to say, on both occasions they were snatched up very fast. This marks the first work at Warren for Neal Adams. Only 18 of these on the CGC census. And with this acquisition, I have seven more Adams books to go. Enjoy.
I've been giving some serious thought lately to possibly selling off the run down to #300. For one, 544 books in one run is a space issue. I need to make the most out of what space I have for comics right now and these things keep piling up! While having a full run of #1 through #544 would be sweet, I think in the long run I'd be fine with 1- 300. At least until our living situation changes and there is more space for comics. I'd like to have the full Copper Age run as those are the books I mostly started on X-Men with. After 300, things just get a little silly for a long time sadly.
I might not do this, and I have no idea how I'd sell off 244 books if I do decide to change the focus of the run. I'm just thinking out loud.
Anyone else here who started off working on a full run of volume 1 and changed the goal like this? Any regrets?
I can't imagine it ever ever being difficult nor expensive to rebuild the run later if I decide to have a complete volume 1. And it'd be something fun to work on.
On the other hand, I already have the books which is a pretty big point in the "just hang on to them" column, even with the storage space issue.
What do you all think?
Alright, Alright, Alright! Managed to score a number 4 of New Gods at 9.0 for a good price, under $50.
I do not have a raw copy of this issue or even a beat up copy. Good thing I have the black and white trade copy from several years ago.
So far I have two slabbed New Gods issues from Jack Kirby's original run. Debating whether to get the "Return of" issues and in no rush.
I do have a couple of raw issues of the Forever People from the same time but no slabs. That will change soon.
Here is a question: why was there never a crossover with OMAC and the New Gods? This would have been an idea to see where it would go.
I am about half way with my New Gods Kirby run. Have decided to send in my raw books. Not sure about a third raw book but I love the series and will get it slabbed.
There are some readable copies I do have on hand somewhere. Did not realize there were at least three copies of #9 in my possession along with a #7. I will find more as I look back through my collection.
And my OMAC run is slowly closing on the gaps. May find my John Byrne OMACs and get them slabbed as well. That is for a later time.
I have a New Gods 1 graded at 8.0. I am pleased but hoping for a 9.0. 8.0 is good.I have a number 8 graded at 6.0. The seller I bought it from neglected to tell me about water stain on the back inside page. Live and learn. I a couple of issues of 7 that I will look over to see which on is the best to send. That is later this month.
The latest episode of the Classic Comics Forum Podcast is now available:
This time around we're starting a 2 part discussion of the team-up era of The Brave and the Bold, before they settled on Batman as a permanent star. In this episode, special guest MDG and I discuss issues #50-56, as well as his time working as a writer for both DC and Valiant/Acclaim, where he co-wrote X-O Manowar for several issues. Hope you enjoy!
A few months into 1989 and Chuck's NICE newsletters expanded in size, mainly due to more book reviews and the large appetite in investing by comic collectors. All of that while Indie books were starting to cool off
But that didnt stop Chuck from advising us on hot upcoming new indies:
Whats that youre telling me? A new adult line of books, with 2 variants? tiny print run?? lord have mercy, this will HAVE to be the next Cherry/Omaha! Or maybe the next Black Kiss?
And yes, of course, Abyss will naturally the next Aliens! See how this all makes sense?
How amazing is it to read about all these spec books which ended up being complete duds? I cant imagine anyone even thinking of buying any of these books today even for nostalgic purposes. But if you think Chuck ran out of ways to sell you on books, think again:
But Chuck didnt just stop at speculating on comic books. There were also RPG, boxer shorts and mugs:
And Ill end this entry with a little bit of Chuck past spec history, from the man himself:
I would have looooved to see a spec article from him about Marvel's New Universe when it came out. Why, he'd probably push the heck out of those titles and guarantee you a sure premium on Merc and Spitfire!
EDIT: I did want to mention that this month saw the release of Vampire Lestat #1 which became Innovation's first commercial success and soon after launched a series of other Anne Rice adaptations all resulting in a major boost in secondary market prices. And yes, this was another big book that Chuck missed, much like all of them really.
A quick note before we continue. As I was editing the next installment I was thinking to myself, waitaminute A&L, anyone reading this who wasn't actively collecting in the 80s may find this very odd. All of these titles that Chuck recommended didnt just get picked up out of the blue (although some, I have to admit, were rather strange picks). They were mostly referenced as potential investment books based on existing current trends. So lets focus a bit on what was ALREADY heating up on the secondary market at that time period;
Punisher - Punisher's limited series took off quickly and with it boosted alot of Bronze appearance by the character including his first appearance of course. In 1986 ASM129 was a $5. By 1988/89 after the success of the LS and the launch of 2 more ongoing titles, it was a 150.00 book. The limited series was getting anywhere from $20-30 for the 1st issue alone. Also, Punisher War Journal #1 was being speculated due to a reported large quantity of the print run being damaged during shipment.
Marvel Masterworks - Hardcovers and TPB were the next big thing in 1988. And Marvel Masterworks were leading the pack with prices soaring between $70-90
Nick Fury vs Shield #1 was a $30 book and was hot hot hottt
Excalibur #1 12.00 and went to 2nd print, DD #254 15.00, all Groo books were scorching hot at $10-20 for #1s all across the board (Marvel, PC etc)
Indies were absolutely KILLING it. Not to suggest that they were outperforming Marvel/DC in sales, heavens no. They were actually selling very poorly by 1988, but some of the titles published in early 80s-1988 carried a hefty price tag, which resulted in a big interest and in my opinion the main reason why Chuck's spec column was even created. They were the fire that sparked interest with comic book collectors again. Lets look at them closely:
The big three - Cerebus - $500. TMNT - $200 Albedo - $350
Although Cerebus was a Bronze age book it heavily influenced the B&W indie market. TMNT - need we say more. Albedo - the minuscule print run on the 1st issue (#0) was enough to make it very sought after by most indie collectors.
Yes these were all B&W books and all featured anthropomorphic characters. But both trends were actually coming to an end by 1988
The 2nd tier - mostly mature underground and some obscure B&W titles like Love & Rockets ($120) Grendel ($30-80) Quadrant ($130) Flaming Carrot ($115) Cherry ($50) Omaha ($25)
Dark Horse was doing well with Concrete ($20) Aliens ($20)
Gladstone were doing tremendously well with most of their Disney titles but mainly with Uncle Scrooge & Donald Duck ($15-25). Yes I kid you not, Disney was hot back then.
Recent hot series included - Tick ($15), Speed Racer/Racer X ($15-20) Rock n Roll Comics ($50) Black Kiss #1 ($20) Faust #1 ($30)
Japanese/Manga books included Lone wolf cub, Naausica, Lum, Kamui and also Ben Dunn's Ninja High School's series were doing well (although the latter wasnt manga)
Its clear that Batman was the leader of the pack. Frank Miller's Dark Knight was a $20 book almost overnight, and by the time Batman was adapted to a movie a few more titles generated interest in the secondary market. They were: Cult #1 (anywhere from $10-20) killing joke ($25) and of course bats #426-429 which were moving at $100 per set. As I mentioned earlier, HC and TPB were all the rage and had a huge demand, and that reflected in (mainly) Batman books: Greatest Batman/Joker Stories ($60) Son Of Demon ($55) and the biggest one of them all Dark Knight s&n Hardcover Edition ($600).
Watchmen was extremely popular as well, and on a side note I truly dont remember any book other than Dark Knight maybe, that has never stopped being popular since it first saw print.
Also, a new trend was forming with D&D comics: Dragonlance & AD&D were seeing $10 or higher prices. Insane right?
In this newsletter Chuck took his spec column to a whole new level. He was confident in his speculating skills more than ever.
This makes a great introductory to what actually happened with comic speculating in its infant years:
This "magic" that got Chuck all excited was actually the overwhelming response from buyers like myself who were, by now, FULLY into this new hobby - investing in modern comic books!
And those titles he quoted as heating up were nothing but duds. Sure, as a wholesaler buying 10k JLI #1 at cost and flipping them the next week for $3 was probably a lucrative purchase (BTW, JLI #1 never really heated up), but for an average comic book buyer like myself this wasnt even an option since you really didnt have an outlet to sell back then unless you had a store (or a booth at a con). So the only real winners for buyers back then were your long term buy+hold investment books, which so far, havent manifested on Chuck's watch (spoiler alert - they wont in the future either )
On another note, this month was a month that alot of titles were cancelled, Marvel cancelled Semper Fi, DC cancelled C.O.P.S., LOSH & Haywire, and Comico, presumably at the request of DC, cancelled Fish Police, Maze Agency, Trollords, Trouble With Girls & Justice Machine Annual #1. But many flagship titles (Batman, X-Men, ASM) were now offered twice a month. Also notice the increasing titles with a hefty 3.95-4.95 price tag. Yup, the big two were on to something.
On to this months big winners, but not before a word of advice from Chuck: (as always, I've highlighted the more entertaining parts)
My god, he bought 500 copies of Punisher movie #1 at the punishing price of 4.95. Even by TODAY'S standards that is a bad spec, and that says ALOT. I guess he really thought theres a chance for it to be a hit as he said, while on the other hand he ordered only 100 of Batman movie adaptation since he KNEW the movie would fail. I dont think he could've been more wrong
Well, wish I wouldve bought his entire stock of 300x ASM #298 at $3 a pop. But as he says... Not guts, no glory
Till next time
I just wanted to put an update! Nothing crazy in the sales, but got sold some random glassware (haha, with proceeds going towards comic fund) and listed a few small 'lots' on craigslist today. Within 10 minutes got an inquiry for my Wolverine #1-4 (regular series, 1988?). Nice fellow, looked at conditions when we met nearby and paid full price. Very rare to not get a haggler on CL! Hopefully my other sets sell quickly. I plan to put more up soon.
So my goal again is to save up my funds to purchase something that is higher than my normal purchase range. I already have my eye on a comic that I want (possibly within my normal range) on ebay. Resisting urge to purchase!!!
Stumbled upon an issue I have been looking for...oddly no other Swamp Thing comics with it. Unfortunately it has a couple of small flaws to keep it out of the 9.6/9.8 range so won't be able to add it to my Moore Swamp Thing CGC run.
I have roughly 8000 books, mostly bronze and copper age, peppered with silver, and a handful of golden, all completed with some moderns.
First comic I bought was Web of Spiderman 17, at the local Circle K store in denver colorado.
I did some weekend work at the mile hi comics warehouse at one point, and was paid in back issues of web of spiderman.
I immediately fell in love with the X-men, and #207 was my first issue.
Since I purchased that #207, I have completed a run from 94-544, with the annuals, and giant size issues. #94 is CGC 8.5 Universal. Currently working on 1-93, and have only 33 issues remaining, with the main one being #1.
I've managed to buy about 4000 bulk comics, which included a run from 144-350 or something like that, so I have duplicates.
I'm primarily a Marvel fan, but do have a fair amount of DC, with my focus being on the Flash. That run will be probably the next complete set I work on. I went through the Image phase, missed the walking dead, but have a nice set of Peter Panzerfaust, with a #1 CGC 9.8 that I enjoy.
I've recently started browsing again after the divorce was final, and have ventured out to the shops, antique stores and CON's as they happen.
I'm in the bay area now, and my comic shop of choice was Flying Colors. BUT, I don't purchase new comics any more. The last new comic I bought was the Death of Wolverine series, and so now my time is spent filling in the holes from 1963 to a few years ago.
So, I thought I'd throw this up here to keep a running documentation of where I'm at, and to share with those that may be curious.
This was in February of 1989 and Marvel had just been sold to Ron Perelman's MacAndrews and Forbes for $82 Mil
(Taken from Mile High Futures Catalog #49 dated March 1989)
Happy days! So you think Chuck would have made better investment spec's this month? Guess again:
But if you thought that Chuck ditched Batman because it was a DC property and because DC wasnt sold to Elon Musk, I mean Ron Perelman, for 82 mil. Think again.
Needless to say, this was very bad spec, Batman Death in the family was and still is a staple copper Bat book, Batman as a character became much bigger within time, while Marvel would suffer major losses in the near future as a result of this new deal.
Short and sweet - You cannot speculate on comic books, as you do not know what the future holds.
Well tomorrow (3/24-3/25) in Dayton Ohio is the 2018 Gem City Comic Con. It's not a big show but it has grown over the years. It is a true Con not a celebrity sign fest where you can actually buy comic books! I am making my list for tomorrow and plan on being there by 8 am and will spent the extra 5 bucks to get in an hour early at 9. Last year my best buy was in the first five minutes of the early entry hour. So if you are within a few hours of Dayton I would suggest stopping by if you can. In the picture are my two most recent buys. The Thor annual 2 is a 9.4 Boston Pedigree and a Thor 140 9.4. I think I am becoming a 9.4 collector by default as I bid on a lot of 9.6 and 9.8's but come in second a lot. Then I go buy a 9.4 of the same books after the auctions. For a lot less though!