UPDATE - Groo 29 WAS a $20-30 book in late 80's!
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Everybody was. I think it was Millers homage to the Emperor's New Clothes, but that scene where he the guy stabs himself just to kill the guy behind was epic. Between its lateness and its suckiness, few had much hope for Dark Knight.

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8 hours ago, shadroch said:

Everybody was. I think it was Millers homage to the Emperor's New Clothes, but that scene where he the guy stabs himself just to kill the guy behind was epic. Between its lateness and its suckiness, few had much hope for Dark Knight.

Here in Toronto, Ronin sold very, very well. Issues #5 & 6 very more difficult to find than the earlier issues and commanded a premium.  I guess sales/demand for back issues/pricing speak to the regional differences, but it was a very strong seller here.

 

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The later issues are scarce because retailers cut way back on their orders because most still had far too man y unsold early issues. #1 sold very well, but by issue 4, it was a dog. If I recall correctly, one issue was so late that they allowed retailers to change their initial orders. I'd ordered pretty heavy and had lots of unsold stock so by the end, I was ordering to sell out. I didn't have a pull system in place back then. I'd tried but it was too complicated. 

Without looking up the numbers, I'd guess issue 6 had maybe 20% of the orders that number 1 had. 

For many years, there were two books I would find in every clollection I was offered. Ronin 1 and New Mutants 1, often in multiples.

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18 hours ago, jjonahjameson11 said:

The Groo Special #1 published by Eclipse was for a long time the most expensive Groo comic.

Groo 29 was never, ever more than cover price.

I agree that it was never ever WORTH more than cover price.  But one of the Price Guides spiked it (either CVM or Overstreet Monthly) and there were people (particularly people in Indianapolis apparently!) who began treating it like it was a wall book.  As I said no one wanted it, and no one cared, but as it relates to the original question, it definitely happened.

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27 minutes ago, seanfingh said:

I agree that it was never ever WORTH more than cover price.  But one of the Price Guides spiked it (either CVM or Overstreet Monthly) and there were people (particularly people in Indianapolis apparently!) who began treating it like it was a wall book.  As I said no one wanted it, and no one cared, but as it relates to the original question, it definitely happened.

This happened with (I think) the last issue of Power Man and Iron Fist also.  CVM had it at like $25 or $50, something silly, and kept it there.  A local shop would give trade based off of CVM so me and a buddy would trade every copy we could find.  

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2 hours ago, seanfingh said:

I agree that it was never ever WORTH more than cover price.  But one of the Price Guides spiked it (either CVM or Overstreet Monthly) and there were people (particularly people in Indianapolis apparently!) who began treating it like it was a wall book.  As I said no one wanted it, and no one cared, but as it relates to the original question, it definitely happened.

Apparently he grew up in Indiana, but was living in Columbus, OH at the time so perhaps more of a regional thing as opposed to an Indy specific thing. 

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20 hours ago, shadroch said:

Most shops marked up every  back issue in the 80s.  My minimum price in the bins was $1 when new books were 60-75 cents, except X-Men. They were $2 for anything after 143.

Groo had a niche following. With $1.50 cover, I imagine I had them for $2. I had my issues segregated by Publisher, and every month I would feature one indie publisher and offer all the back issues for fifty cents. I didn't know anything about cycle sheets when I opened up so the first six months or so I greatly over ordered some books and under ordered others. After a few months, it became obvious that a small number of books represented most of my sales and I got to be decent about ordering properly. I had a small store, with no backroom so unsold stock was a real burden, aside from being constantly near broke.

I did two monthly shows and tried to blow out excess back stock there, but even then some books just didn't sell. Hard to believe now, but Batman titles were really slow sellers. I had two boxes of Bat Books come in one day. I bought them for a quarter each in trade and priced them at fifty cents and they barely sold. Lots of 12 cent books and no one wanted them. Then Dark Knight came out and everyone totally under-ordered them. Batman sales sucked, Millers last project was a disaster for most shops and it was several times the price of a normal comic.  Some shops ordered the minimum and some didn't even order it. MY 20 copies were sold out in a day or two.

Curiosity is getting the better of me today.

what city was/is your stored located?

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17 hours ago, Bird said:

would that have been Ronin? I was so confused and dumbstruck as a 16 year old reading that off the racks! 

DK2?

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3 hours ago, jjonahjameson11 said:

Curiosity is getting the better of me today.

what city was/is your stored located?

My first two shops were on Long Island. Then I managed a shop in Puerto Rico  for a year and a half.  I bought a commercial building in Bisbee last year and planned on opening a multi- purpose mini mall that would have included a comic department, but not new books at the start. I had a few zoning issues but the next few months are uncharted.

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I don't remember seeing this listed for that much in one of the price guides, but I do remember seeing it listed for a crazy amount around the early-mid 90's. It was one of the mail-order dealers that advertised in the monthly comics, can't remember which one. I just remember seeing this issue for something like $70, which blew me away. I'll keep an eye open for the ad while I'm reading through my floppies. 

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East Coast Comics had it advertised for:

$5 (with a large group of other issues) - ad expiry Dec 31 1990

$15 (alone, less than only 1&2) - ad expiry Sep 30 1992

$13 (with 3&4) - ad expiry Nov 30 1992

$3.50 (with the 12-18 group) - ad expiry Nov 30 1994

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I remember it and it was short lived.  There was a short window where Groo was designated as Hot and the random first appearances went up in value.  Ruferto, Chakaal and others.  The Pacific and Eclipse comics were $20-30 each as well.  It was right around the time that comics would come out and the next month be priced at $5.  Later issues of GI Joe, TMNT Ronin and others were like that.  Lots of multi issue speculation.  Also at the same time  baseball cards went manic (1987-89) and then fell off a cliff.    It was kind of silly and right around when I went to college, led me to bow out for about 10 years.  

The Groo Pacific issues always sing to me when I see them in collections as I would never buy them back in the day for being so expensive.  

But yeah, Ruferto first appearance was a thing.

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Ronin still holds up as one of the best comic stories ever written. My $.02. 

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Issue 43 - December 1989CBE89753-47F4-4E94-97AB-A77699AC005B.jpeg

Issue 56 - January 1991
891B5E47-FA1C-4EF7-98AB-BD441B6CBA5B.jpeg

 

Edited by Hey Kids, Comics!

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