Congratulations, 2021 CGC Registry Award Winners!

Posted on 7/23/2021

With so many amazing collections, competition was fierce this year.

The CGC Registry has grown to over 90,000 registered sets in the last year! There are now more than 500,000 books registered and it is thrilling to see the steady, continued growth of the CGC Registry.

Our mission was to choose three sets each in six competitive categories — Best Golden Age, Best Silver Age, Best Bronze Age, Best Modern Age, Best Copper Age and Best Presented. Additionally we had the task of choosing one winner for Best Magazine set, one Best Signature Series Set, three outstanding message board contributors and just one collector for the John Verzyl Sr. Registry Masterpiece Award. Our team of judges reviewed all of the top sets across every category in the Comics Registry and after much deliberation, selected the following winners.

Congratulations to all!

CGC 2021 John Verzyl Sr. Registry Masterpiece Award

CGC is proud to announce that the 2021 John Verzyl Sr. Registry Masterpiece Award is presented to wallstreetrebel! In 2013, wallstreetrebel, a father and son team of collectors, won their first CGC Registry Overall Achievement Award. Today, we are pleased to announce that the pair have won their second! With a total score of 7,201,578 (more than double the closest collector) wallstreetrebel cemented his first place in the Registry Point Rankings.

As they point out in their bio (what a fantastic bio); 15 sets are 100% complete, 45 sets are ranked #1 and most impressive is that their collection includes 220 books that are the highest graded copies in the registry as of June, 2021. The collection of mostly Marvel and DC Silver age books is astounding to see in such amazing condition and completeness. A collection to behold.

Congratulations, wallstreetrebel, on your second win! wallstreetrebel profile page.

Best Golden Age Sets
Best Gold Age Sets Logo

Impulse - Mad #1-#23
Take the best artists, the biting wit of the sharpest writers, and the unparalleled eye of the greatest editors, and you’ve got Mad — but this little nutshell doesn’t do any justice to the mighty mag. There are iconic comic titles, but then there are true icons of the comic craft. Mad brought them all together in one place, where they worked in symphony to produce the absolute greatest satire ever printed. The term “funny book” is never more defined than in any issue of Mad.

Mad began its life in comic‐sized print form from 1952 until 1955, when it changed to magazine format. There’s a general misconception that the change was the result of the crackdown from the Comics Code Authority, but it was in fact the threat of departure from Mad’s editor at the time, Harvey Kurtzman, that forced the move. Ironically, the change inadvertently avoided the censorship from the CCA. Mad remained in print, and fans with the appetite for satire were of course superbly satiated.

Those first 23 issues of Mad in comic‐sized form are the most desired of the title, and Impulse has put together an envious set that would get any collecting fan of Mad salivating. Every book in this collection could be a crown jewel, but of course the biggest of them all is the Gaines File Copy Mad #1 in 9.8. It doesn’t get any better than that folks, and this writer’s socks are knocked so far off that they’re probably past Dimension X by now! We’re simply mad with envy and pleased as punch to award Impulse for this Mad 1‐23 set. Congratulations Impulse!

GAM - Seduction Productions (1948)
It’s interesting to think that the content of comics could make it all the way to the Supreme Court, but in 1957 that’s exactly what happened. During the 1954 Brooklyn Thrill Killers case, a psychiatrist named Fredric Wertham assigned to the trial postulated that the title Nights of Horror inspired the teens to commit murder. Nights of Horror was subsequently banned in New York. The public bought the theory — along with Wertham’s book “Seduction of the Innocent”, which collected dozens of examples from comic books depicting violence, gore and murder.

In 1957, after much outcry from the public, the Supreme Court upheld the ban on Nights of Horror, and worried parents championed to ban comics of supposed bad influence. Wertham’s book, along with the Supreme Court decision, led to the establishment of the Comics Code Authority, a self‐regulating body among comic publishers that censored what they published. Once in place, horror and crime comics disappeared from newsstands everywhere, replaced by the superheroes of the Silver Age.

It’s no wonder that GAM would be inspired by the wild history of SOTI and its impact on comics to put together the issues featured in Wertham’s book! GAM began “Seduction Productions” in 2010 with Crime Smasher’s #1 in 7.0. Many impressive examples have been added over the years including Chamber of Chills #7 in 9.0 — a notoriously tough title for high grade examples, Crime Files #5 in stunning 9.6, and Frontline Combat #4, unbelievable in 9.8, one of only 36 graded and one of only 5 in 9.8 on the census!

We’re thrilled to award GAM’s “Seduction Productions” for Best in Golden Age,and look forward to what the future holds for this historical set! Congratulations!

lbcolefan - Blue Bolt/Ghostly Weird Stories
The Golden Age of comics isn’t known for ground‐breaking storytelling, but it’s arguably one of the greatest for the art. At the time, comic artists weren’t considered true artists. Never taken seriously and struggling to make ends meet in their day, these underdogs would only much later be celebrated for their characters, funny and gruesome horror panels, and innovative layouts.

LB Cole is among these artists. Hailing from a background in lithography and anatomy, he developed his technique using bold linework, moody shading and bright colors. His style is instantly recognizable among collectors, and many would argue that Cole defined in large part, the look of Golden Age comics. Cole worked as an editor and produced interior art for several publishers, but his best work graced some of the most iconic Golden Age covers.

lbcolefan’s set collects these coveted Cole covers from the Blue Bolt and Ghostly Weird Stories titles. These books have always been difficult to find, and are becoming tougher each year, so it is impressive to say the least that lbcolefan has put together this stunning set. Even more impressive are the high grades! Blue Bolt 105 — with it’s all black cover — is next to impossible in 8.5! Weird Tales 114’s awesome “Swamp Spirit” cover in 8.0, and Ghostly Weird Stories 121’s ghastly grim reaper cover — also in 8.0 — are real prizes in this collection!

We’re excited to award lbcolefan for Best in Golden Age to for this wonderful, iconic set! Congratulations!

Best Silver Age Sets
Best Silver Age Sets Logo

RMI High Tech - Daredevil (Complete with Variants)
This set has spent the last 10 years as a "BEST IN SET TYPE". With many upgrades over the years, this set has finally reached elite status. The set is missing only 3 of the 1st 300 issues (not counting a few price variants). Most issues are tied or sit alone as "Highest Graded Copy" on the CGC Census. Many are Stan Lee signed Signature Series. All are beautifully pictured with descriptions. We look forward to this set's final completion! And I bet we see a few more upgrades along the way. Congratulations on a fine presentation of a great set!

Sweet Lou 14 - X-Men (1963) #1-#143
There has been a multitude of upgrades since this set last won "BEST IN SET TYPE" IN 2018. This is an extremely controlled, consistent condition set. It starts with a very nice 9.0 1st issue. Issues #2-93 are ALL 9.4. Issues #94-120 are ALL 9.6. Issues #121-143 are ALL 9.8. AMAZING! Nearly all are photographed for our viewing pleasure. Great job assembling this wonderful set! And thank you for sharing it with us!!

mrmarvel - Silver Surfer Master
A complete 9.8 run of Silver Surfers! A 9.8 Fantastic Four #48! WOW! After 9 consecutive years as "BEST IN SET TYPE", it is time to give this set more accolades. And while there are only 37 books in the set, 5 key books were upgraded. I hope that the set's owner will put up a full set of scans of these beautiful books. Congratulations mrmarvel, now show us what you've got!!

Best Bronze Age Sets
Best Bronze Age Sets Logo

Ronnylama - DC Bronze Age 1st Issues (1970-1979)
Wow! What a fun set! Ronnylama has put together a very impressive set of bronze age DC’s! The bronze age is such a special time in comics, and this set shows it. This era was rich in diversity and creativity. The collection is rich in high grade gems, and even signature series. All comic collectors know how difficult it can be to find high grade DC’s. Congratulations Ronnylama on this win and, keep filling in those holes! Your passion for comic collecting shines through this collection!

Lion Heart, Inc. - Ghost Rider (1973)
This collection is on fire! Hellfire! One book left to finish the run and seventy-eight 9.8s and two 9.6s! A nearly perfect set! Covering Ghost Riders first appearances in Marvel Spotlight thru the characters own self-titled series, Lionheart has put together a dream run that would delight any Ghost Rider fan! Congratulations!

jjbjheartman - House of Secrets #81-#154
Great collection! After being absent for two years, House of Secrets creeped back onto the spinner racks to usher in a new era of horror! The most notable issues are adorned with frightening and eerily beautiful covers from industry legends like Neal Adams and Bernie Wrightson. Owner jjbjheartman has put together a nearly complete run in impressive high grades! Congratulations!

Best Copper Age Sets
Best Copper Age Sets Logo

RedGiant - Cry For Dawn #1-#9
The Copper Age of comics is notable for introducing many of the mainstream characters we all know and love, but it was also an incredible time of independent titles coming to life. Creators took to their living rooms for the first sketches of their characters, and developed stories with friends over many late nights, clocking countless hours in a true labor of love. This was certainly the case for Joseph Michael Linsner in 1987, an artist since childhood, who looked into publishing a black and white comic, got a bunch of his friends together, and in 1989, unleashed Cry for Dawn #1.

Linsner was influenced by comic art greats and the fantastical, gory realms depicted in 70’s-era horror and sword and sorcery comics and magazines. This influence is apparent in Cry For Dawn, whose protagonist goddess Dawn captivated many readers — in stark black and white — from her very first issue. For fans of this style of art and storytelling, Cry For Dawn was immediately legendary. Cry for Dawn #1 was so hard to get ahold of that it was even counterfeited — a problem that plagued several independent creators at the time.

Red Giant of course has a legit issue #1 in 9.8 — one of only 27 — as well as a rarer second printing of #1 in 9.8 — one of only 7 on the census, and one of only 80 copies graded in total. The rest of the 22-book set is equally — if not tougher — to assemble but Red Giant has managed to pull it off and show it off here on the CGC Registry.

Red Giant’s set is also impressive for the long list of challenges facing independent comic book fans when trying to complete their collections – scarcity of later issues, toughness of 9.8s, and other collectors who buy and keep their books rather than letting them change hands more regularly.

We’re proud to award Red Giant’s Cry For Dawn set for Best in Copper Age! Congratulations on this very cool, very tough set!

Riptionator - Thundercats (Marvel)
If you grew up in the 1980s, chances are that the Thundercats theme song has been stuck in your head at some point as an adult. The characters from the Thundercats were some of the coolest in the awesome world that is ’80s kids cartoons, and like a lot of other animated series from the era, Thundercats was accompanied by a comic book series to add to the fun. Marvel’s Star imprint published the Thundercats for 24 issues. It’s easy to imagine these books hanging out on floors and shelves next to action figures and video games in kids’ bedrooms everywhere… read over and over, dog-eared, and thoroughly enjoyed!

For that very reason, Riptionator’s quest to assemble them all in 9.8 decades later was no easy feat! Riptionator began in the late summer of 2011 with issues 4 and 12, and finally finished off the set in the spring of this year with issue 11. Thunder, thunder THUNDERCATS HO!

This set is so much fun and really speaks to the nostalgia for the childhood memories of the 1980s that so many people in the comic collecting world have. We’re thrilled to award Riptionator for this wonderful set! Congratulations Riptionator!

electricprune - Vigilante (1983)
Way back in 1983, while Sally Ride was making history as the first American woman in space, Mario Bros. was making its humble debut in Japan’s arcades, and the first Motorola brick phones were introduced to the public, Adrian Chase was stoking fear in the hearts of New York City’s toughest criminals in the pages of DC’s Vigilante. Fast forward a few decades to the present, and electricprune introduces his fantastic “Vigilexcellence” Vigilante set to the comic collecting world!

The 1980s can be remembered for much, but the quality of comic printing — particularly with DC — is not one of them! Books from this era in nice shape are very hard to find. As well, DC’s print runs were far lower than Marvel’s, and titles like Vigilante accounted for less than ¼ of the order numbers of their more mainstream titles. Vigilante ran for 50 issues and 2 annuals, and electricprune has hunted down every one of them — a tough task to say the least, and one that took electricprune several years to complete. Some of them are the only 9.8 on the census!

We’re very excited to award electricprune for this fantastic collection. Congratulations to electricprune for this wonderful achievement in comic collecting!

Best Modern Age Sets
Best Modern Age Sets Logo

workingdog - Thor (2020)
Marvel rolled out the red carpet and gave the royal treatment to Thor in 2020 when they put Donny Cates and Nic Klein at the helm of the title. These modern-day masters are fantastic, and together they make a real powerhouse team.

Modern collectors need look no further than Workingdog’s Thor 2020 set to gain some serious inspiration. Where the writing and art for Marvel’s titles has soared higher, the printing quality has remained rough, making 9.8s nearly impossible. Workingdog certainly had their work cut out in this area! Not to mention the dizzying number variants — many of which are very hard to find!

The #1 Jusko variant is an immediate classic, and the #6 Second Printing/Sketch is stunning, but the real crown jewel must be the #1 Buscema variant. Retailer incentive books are tough enough to get ahold of, but modern Marvel’s are notoriously hard in high grades. Workingdog has found one in 9.8! Very impressive! We’re glad to award Workingdog’s Thor 2020 set with Best in Modern Age! Congratulations on a job well done!

Iconic1s - Superman (Doomsday! Funeral for a Friend Reign of the Supermen!)
During the early 1990s, Superman was a long way from where he started back in 1938. DC sales were at all-time lows. Superman in particular wasn’t selling well at all. It seemed like the public had all but abandoned the Man of Steel.

In 1991, DC’s newly formed Superman creative team got together to give new life to the Son of Krypton… by killing him off. The idea was born of a joke made by Jerry Ordway, one of the creative team, but eventually it evolved into a provocative storyline that gave Superman something entirely new: vulnerability. It also invited readers to look at a world without the greatest super-hero of all time.

Readers certainly took up the invitation and were riveted with the storyline to say the least. DC’s sales skyrocketed across the titles, and Superman #75 became the best-selling comic of 1992.

During Christmas of the same year, Iconic1 received the Death of Superman trade paperback, officially launching a 27+ year journey to collect every issue of the entire storyline! What an accomplishment!

This collection boasts some of the highest graded storyline issues, many of them the first 9.8s to be added to the census, as well as two 9.9s with Adventures of Superman #500 and Superman: The Man of Steel #18! Arguably, though, some of the toughest books in this set are the later printings! With such high readership, later printings were definitely not as appreciated as the first, and are very hard to find in nice shape.

We’re impressed with the high grades of Iconic1’s set, but it’s the heart that’s gone into assembling this collection that really makes it shine! We’re proud to award Iconic1 with Best in Modern Age for this extraordinary set! Congratulations Iconic1!

peter.l - Chew
A food-psychic government agent. Alien invaders. A ban on chicken…and DNA-altered frogs called Frickens?! Some of the wackiest stories make for the best reads in comics, and Image Comics’ Chew is certainly among them. Debuting in 2009, Chew’s delightfully strange plot and Cohen Brothers-esque characters were an immediate hit. The wild ride ran for 60 issues (plus some new spin-offs!) and earned creators John Layman and Rob Guillory an Eisner award.

Peter.l is a collector with a self-described “completist affliction”, so naturally he decided to go after every issue in the series, as well as later printings and even a Chew coloring book! We love to see the hard work and dedication of comic creators inspiring the same in collectors, and the labor of love Peter.I has put into this set really shows.

Some of the standouts in Peter.l’s set are the awesome Signature Series issues with sketches by Rob Guillory, the wraparound cover for issue 15 in 9.8, and the stunning 3rd printing of issue 3 in a Signature Series 9.9!

We’ve had a lot of fun checking out this awesome set and are excited to award it with Best in Modern Age! Congratulations Peter.l!

Best Presented Sets
Best Presented Sets Logo

JLA Brad - Brave and the Bold #1-#200
Outstanding collection of a classic series! The covers are absolutely gorgeous, and JLA Brad’s stories about how he acquired the books makes you want to start collecting B&B too, just to be part of their rich history. What can be said about B&B #28 that hasn’t already been said? The Justice League fighting a giant monster starfish?? It doesn’t get any better than that! Kudos, JLA Brad, your dedication and perseverance are truly an inspiration, here’s hoping you complete this set someday!

Badger - All Select Comics #1 - #11
What a wonderful slice of history! This pre Marvel collection really makes you appreciate the talent of the Golden Age artists. You can’t help but smile at the depiction of Sub Mariner on the covers. What really stands out in this collection is the set description, such a great and inspiring story! Your passion and dedication really shine through, Badger. You should be proud of this set, we certainly are!

Brandon Shepherd - Action Cmoics (Complete)
Super, man! The iconic Action Comics, one of the longest running comic books in the business. 9.8s across the board, with an ultra rare 9.9 for issue 581, what an accomplishment! This set just screams “Old School”, and Brandon’s descriptions of each comic bring them to life. Great back story in the set description as well! Thank you for sharing this collection with us all, Brandon, good luck in your search for the rest!

Best Magazine Set
Best Magazine Set Logo

Taxmick1 - Dracula Lives Behold! Within these putrid pages lurks the work of some of Marvel’s finest! One of their several 70’s forays into horror, this title showcased sinister stories scribed by the likes of Roy Thomas, Marv Wolfman, Gerry Conway, Len Wein and Chris Claremont. The terror-ific tales were disturbingly delineated in gruesome detail by Neal Adams, Gene Colan, Jim Starlin, John Buscema and Pablo Marcos, among many others.

Featured in this set are 9.6 copies of the classic Boris Vallejo cover on issue #1, and Neal Adams’ take on the Prince of Darkness on #2. The other issues, with covers by Earl Norem and Luis Dominguez, are represented here in grades as high as 9.8. An impressively breathtaking, blood-curdling collection of vital vampiric volumes!

Best Custom Set
Best Custom Set Logo

Sensei Ryan - Captain America #1
This is truly an impressive use of the features of the custom set option. Sensei Ryan has really taken the time to research and report on Captain America #1 as well as collecting and displaying the pages of the issue for other users to view and appreciate. the addition of newer reprints of this issue really helps to round out the set as a whole. Since one of the goals of the set is to win this award, we are glad to help Sensei Ryan complete that mission! Congratulations!

Best Signature Series Set
Best Signature Series Set Logo

Mattn792 - Spider-Man Maximum Carnage (1993)
Matt has a very impressive run of high-grade Amazing Spider-man comics that follow the Maximum Carnage story line.It's so impressive to see this many books signed and graded in 9.8! This set has been continually added to over the years, which is the mark of a dedicated collector! Congratulations on your incredible Signature Series set!

Best Forumites
Best Forumites Logo

Get Marwood And I
Robot Man

Best in Set Type
Best in Set Type Logo

We would also like to acknowledge the top set in each set type. See our 2021 Awards Archive page for the Best in Set Type winners.

2021 Awards Archive

Winners can print their certificates of achievement through their My Account page on Hard copy printed certificates will not be mailed automatically. Winners who prefer to receive a hard copy printed certificate by mail must request them on their My Account page on by August 31, 2021.

Stay Informed

Want news like this delivered to your inbox once a month? Subscribe to the free CGC eNewsletter today!


You've been subscribed to the CGC eNewsletter.

Unable to subscribe to our eNewsletter. Please try again later.

Articles List