Top 10 MOST EXPENSIVE Comic Books
Anything is only worth what someone is willing to pay for it, the question here is, just how much is one willing to pay for a comic book? From the first appearance of the Amazing Spider-Man to the first ever X-men comic book, we're taking a look at the Top 10 Most Expensive Comic Books Ever Sold to the public.
Action Comics #1 ($3.2m)
Look, up in the sky! It's a bird! It's a plane! It's, it's, Superman! Coming in at our number one spot with a ground-breaking, shattering sale of a 9.0 grade copy of Action Comics #1, sold through Ebay of all places, by Darren Adams, owner of Pristine Comics, for a whopping $3,207,852! No individual comic book sale has even come close to this one. Action Comics #1, first printed in June of 1938 with a limited 200,000 copies, sporting a cover price of just 10¢, compiles a telling of multiple stories, most notably being the first ever appearance of Superman, told through pages 1-13, created by Jerry Siegel, and Joe Shuster. This is one of two issues graded this high, the other from actor Nicholas Cage was sold at auction for just over $2.1 million. Why such a large price difference, you ask? Well, even though they share the same grade, the copy sold by Adam is considered to be the "better looking" book, boasting a whiter cover.
Amazing Fantasy #15 ($1.1 Million)
With a 12¢ original cover price, Amazing Fantasy #15, written and penciled by Stan Lee, Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko in 1962, introduced us to the ever popular Spider-Man. A 9.6 graded copy of it would be sold through CommicConnect.com, then went on to become the largest, ever, all cash sale of a comic book, a deal that was worth a spectacular $1,100,000. This near pristine copy is said to be the "Silver Age equivalent of the Golden Age Action Comics #1" and has become a vital and key issue in the defining factor of comic book value by era.
Detective Comics #27 ($1,000,000)
Another comic by Bob Kane and Bill Finger, 1939's Detective Comics #27 would reach record numbers through Heritage Auctions, turning over one of the largest sales for a Golden Age comic, selling for an astounding $1,000,000. On February 25th, 2010, the 8.0 graded comic, which first appeared Batman, became one of the most expensive comic books to date. The comic was targeted to reach a much smaller sum of $100,000, but a bid-war ensued, finally ending when an anonymous buyer would pay a grand total of $1,075,000, after a buyer's premium had factored in. Some argue that due to its high sale price and poorer condition, that it could possibly be a more valuable comic book than Action Comics #1.
Batman #1 ($567,000)
The highest graded copy of 1940's, Batman #1, featuring the first appearances of both Catwoman and the clown prince of terror, the Joker. This 10¢ cover-priced comic was graded at 9.2 and sold through Heritage Comics on behalf of the Tadano America Corporation for an impressive $567,000. This comic though comes with one of the more interesting stories behind it; the comic originally sold for an astounding $850,000 in a private sale in May of 2012, but the "purchaser" at the time, Anthony Chiofalo, would be found guilty of embezzling funds to purchase his high-cost collectables. A little under $300,000 dollars later, this comic by Bob Kane and Bill Finger would finally go on and set a new precedence for the value of vintage comics.
X-Men #1 ($492,000)
As one of Marvel Comics most iconic teams ever, it comes as little surprise that a 9.8 graded copy of X-Men #1 would sell just shy of $500,000, making its 12¢ original cover price pretty heartbreaking for all those old folk out there that thought comics were stupid in the 1960's. This, being one of just two copies so far with a 9.8 grade, Heritage Comics online auctions sold a copy for $492,000 in 2012, surpassing the previous record of $200,000 for a 9.6 grade copy. The 1963 comic by the ever famous duo, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, would start one of the most successful comic book titles in the world; starting with the original teams first appearances of Professor Xavier, Marvel Girl, Beast, Cyclops, Iceman and Angel, against their foe Magneto.
Tales of Suspense #39 ($375,000)
1963's Tales of Suspense #39 by Stan Lee and Don Heck, with cover art by, you guessed it, Jack Kirby, with an original cover price of 12¢, setting its record sale in 2012 with a 9.6 grade copy, sold for $375,000 through ComicLink. This comic is of great value to any marvel comic collector, marking the first appearance of Iron-Man, the beloved character now immortalized by Rober Downy Jr. The new record for this comic takes leaps and strides from its previous record sale price of $147,000 for a 9.4 grade copy.
Captain America Comics #1 ($340,000)
Another record setting sale from online vintage comic book auction house, Commicconnect.com, this time bringing in an impressive $343,000 for a 9.2 grade copy of Captain America Comics #1, the title character's first appearance, created by the combined talents of Jack Kirby and Joe Simon, published originally on March 1st, 1941, and holding an original cover price of a mere 10¢. This issue came from a private collection; he kept such good care of it, it obtained the 2nd highest known grade for this comic.
The Incredible Hulk #1 ($320,000)
Even in a time when vintage comics frequently garner high value, very few of them will reach hundreds of thousands; in the case of Stan Lee's and Jack Kirby's The Incredible Hulk #1, published in May of 1962, a 9.2 grade copy sold through ComicConnect, an online vintage comic auction house, for a pricetag of $320,000 in 2014, an impressive markup from the original cover price of 12¢. This sale places the first appearance of the Hulk up near the upper echelon of the silver age comic book values.
Fantastic Four #1 ($300,000)
In November of 1961, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby would create one of the most important comics ever created, a story about four scientists traveling into space, then meeting with cosmic radiation, turning them into the Fantastic Four that would begin a mighty empire. With an original cover price of 10¢, today it is worth a small fortune, as a 9.4 grade copy would get its record sale through Metropolis Collectibles in 2011, for an outstanding sum of $300,000. This issue is one of four known copies to have obtained a 9.4 grade, making it a highly sought after valuable amongst collectors.
The Avengers #1 ($275,000)
The first of many first issues on our list, The Avengers issue #1, written by Stan Lee and penciled by Jack Kirby, puts a list of then Marvel favorite characters, Ant-Man, Wasp, Hulk, Iron Man and Thor together as The Avengers for the first time. The first edition prints of The Avengers #1, first sold on September 10th, 1963, for 12¢. It wasn't for some years later, after the "silver age" of comics had come and gone that the issue would bring in the money to place it on our list. On July, 26th, 2012, a grade 9.6 copy sold for an astounding $275,000 through Heritage Auctions.