You might not logically think of comics as antiques, but they are. In fact, as far as antiques are concerned, comics exemplify everything that makes old products valuable. Comics have great sentimental value, telling the stories of beloved superheroes, while also showcasing the creativity of artists many decades past.
When talking about value it’s almost unbelievable how much some are willing to pay for a mint condition old comic. Though, not just any old comic will do. If you want to rack up millions for ancient ink and paper, you’re going to have to have a big name on the cover.
Action Comics #1
The image of Superman lifting a green, 1930s car over his head is so iconic as to practically be a religion. Action Comics #1 is incredibly valuable, but did you realise just how valuable? There are a pair of well-known copies in the public eye, with the 9.0 grade version having recently sold for an unbelievable $2,161,000.00.
The 8.5 grade versions sold for slightly less, $1,500,000.00 million. Yes, a grade difference of 0.5 can knock over a half million off the value. Either way, if you happen to stumble across 1930s Superman in your attic you’re basically retiring on the spot. Heck, the only other way you’re going to make that sort of money is perhaps gambling online, and maybe hitting a progressive jackpot.
Amazing Fantasy #15
The next most valuable superhero, apparently, is Spider-Man. Many will be surprised to learn that the web-slinger is worth so many hundreds of thousands less than Superman, especially given the recent boost in Marvel character popularity. But, the reality of comics, and antiques, is that it isn’t Spider-Man that’s less popular, it’s that so few are aware Amazing Fantasy #15 even exists.
Even still, the comic sold for a whopping $1,100,000.00 in 2011. It’s probably dramatically more valuable now, so don’t let the numbers fool you. It’s just a matter of when the collector decides to sell.
Detective Comics #27
Next up is arguably the most popular comic character worldwide, Batman, with Detective Comics #27. But is Batman worth “only” $1,075,000.00? The trick here is that the comic itself is graded as 8.0, and considering the price hit to Action Comics for just a 0.5 difference, it isn’t surprising that Batman cashes in less than Superman.
A second version of Detective Comics #27, graded 6.5, brought in just $625,000.00 in 2011. Small imperfections make big differences when it comes to antiques, which is why it’s a good idea to keep up with industry news.
Rated near-mint with 9.2, Batman #1 sold for only $567,625.00 in 2013. Why the lower value? Because, simply put, Detective Comics #27 is where Bruce Wayne and Commissioner Gordon are actually introduced. Detective Comics #27 is the real Batman #1, as far as collectors are concerned.
Even still, you’d be more than happy to stumble across a Batman #1 in your grandfather’s dusty collection. Though, there are actually far more valuable antiques than comics, some of which will make you a multi-millionaire a few times over.