Weekend Update with Nico
The following article has been written by Comic Book Speculation Dot Com writer, Nico. Read more articles from Nico here.
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This is your Weekend Update!
Robert Pattinson will star as the billionaire playboy Bruce Wayne in Matt Reeves The Batman. Details regarding the film are few and far between, but Reeves has indicated that the film will focus on Batman as the world’s greatest detective. This has led some to speculate that we will see the New 52 Zero Year story starring the Riddler, while others anticipate a film that will focus on some of the other great mystery storylines that have graced the pages of the caped crusader over the generations, including Hush, the Long Halloween and the Court of Owls storyline. All of these suppositions are educated guesses and few have any real connection to insider information. Nevertheless, this is not a bad time to be buying Batman key books as the character has not seen significant heat in the secondary market in a very long time. Moreover, Batman keys retain there value as blue chip comic book investments and have enjoyed a low risk investment status for decades. A few other morsels of information that have apparently leaked from Reeves and his contemporaries is that the forthcoming Batman film will feature an ensemble cast from Batman’s rogues gallery but it is unlikely to feature Selena Kyle (Catwoman) who Warner Brothers is saving for her own independent project.
Everyone’s favorite retired CIA officer, Tom King has been tapped to pen the screen play for a forthcoming New Gods film with the film’s director Ava DuVernay. The news was reported initially by The Wrap before being confirmed via Twitter by DuVernay herself.
While this isn’t a firm commitment to the production of an actual film, it is a clear message that Warner Brothers is committed to the project and militates in favor of the film actually getting made. Although the plot is unknown there are a ton of key books that you can anticipate moving in the secondary market. A few examples are:
- New Gods #1 (1971) is the first appearance of Orian, Highfather, Lightray, Meltron and Kalibak;
- Mister Miracle #1 (1971) is the first appearance of Mister Miracle, Scott Free, son of the High Father;
- Mister Miracle #2 is the first appearance of Granny Goodness;
- Mister Miracle #4 is the first appearance of Big Barda;
- Mister Miracle #6 is the first appearance of the Female Furies.
The other two major books are Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen #134 and Forever People #1. These two books are both referenced as the first appearance of Darkseid.
There have been a number of interesting sales of New Gods related books. Just prior to the announcement a CGC 9.6 of Mister Miracle #1 sold for $1,294.00 online. Following the announcement, we saw a $575.00 sale of a CGC 9.4 copy. Similarly, on May 30th we saw a CGC 9.0 copy of New Gods #1 sell for $299.00. Ironically, there appear to have been more sales of Forever People #1 than Jimmy Olsen #134. Forever People, although the more substantial appearance, has for many years (to many people’s dismay) been the preferred book among collectors. It will be interesting if new money in the market takes a harder look at these books and the titles flip flop in the way that Fantastic Four #67 and Thor #165 have flip flopped over the course of the last decade. I won’t hold my breath for that to happen to the extent that the black cover on Jimmy Olsen #134 has always been integral to the heightened desirability of high grade copies of that book.
If you are looking for a cool book in relation to the forthcoming New Gods film look no further than the Lee Bermejo 1:25 Variant of Adventure Comics volume 2 #12 ( which is numbered on the cover as number #515). It is hard to find ratio variant with an epic Darkseid cover. The book is a ghost online with the last copy being listed on eBay around Christmas of 2018. I anticipate that prices on this book will reach into the stars if a New Gods film sees the big screen. A less expensive spec play is Mister Miracle #7 (2018) which is the first appearance of Jacob Free, the son of Mister Miracle and Big Barda (also Darkseid’s grandson).
LB Cole is Fire Hot
Over the course of the last year there has been a resurgence in interest surrounding LB Cole and prices on his books have appreciated proportionally. In the last few weeks a number of key Cole covers moved in live auctions on eBay. For example, a CGC 7.0 copy of Blue Bolt Weird Tales #111 sold on May 26th for a remarkable $2,247.00. The following day an $800.00 BIN copy of Blue Bold #110 which appeared to be in at least VG condition sold for $800.00 in a matter of hours. Two days later, on May 29th, a raw copy of Blue Bolt Weird #115 described as being in G/VG sold in a live auction for $965.00.
Interestingly, we have seen more and more sellers listing big books outside of the traditional private online auction houses like Heritage, Comiclink and ComicConnect and re-listing the books on eBay while and other sellers are begining to pull their books off of eBay and listing them on Comiclink, ComicConnect or MyComicShop.
It pays to know your Archie Comics
If you are looking to make money buying and selling comic books one of the best tips that I can give you is “know your Archies.” Archie collectors spend serious money on comics and often even astute and experienced comic collectors over look Archie comics as children’s books and give away books that are valued at hundreds of dollars. Most are already well aware that Vamperonica and Betty the Vampire Slayer books are valuable books (i.e., Betty and Veronica #261 and #262), but there are a ton of other Archie books that you should be aware of and willing to pay for when you see them.
Perhaps the most notorious of all the Archie’s comics is Betty and Me #16 which is wildly sought after as a result of Archie telling Betty he “had to beat off three other guys!” This book is a 12 cent comic and not generally found in dollar bins, but it certainly turns up in unsorted boxes of Archie books in retailer shops across the county. The same may said for Pep Comics #64. It features Archie in a doctor’s office staring at two women who are resting in one anothers arms on a comfy chair with a nurse attempting to hand Archie a magazine as she inquires whether he would “like something to look at while you’re waiting for the doctor?”
My personal favorite is Archie #78. It’s a 10 cent comic and the cover is a panel discussion between Archie and Betty wherein Archie says, “Now to get the feel of the clutch!” And Betty replies “Ohh Archie– ” and the next panel is an alarmed Archie fleeing from a crazed Betty out of the car (presumably from a borderline sexual assault).
Archie #271 is another notorious cover featuring dialogue where Betty tells Archie that Veronica is expecting a pearl necklace for her birthday. The cover of Wilbur #59 talks about Betty playing with her “kitty cat” which is construed as a sexual innuendo. Similarly, there is a loose innuendo regarding “trim” that has made Laugh #271 popular.
Even more contemporary Archie books like Betty and Veronica #251 (the bikini Uggs cover) is bringing upwards of $175.00 for high grade raw copies, and Veronica #28 sold for $142.50 on May 28th (this cover is a swimsuit cover of Veronica touching her toes jumping off a diving board.).
Suffice to say, there is money to be made buying and selling Archie comics and it appears that there is no slowing down the demand for these books. The three basic rules of thumb when you are looking at Archie books are: (1) sex sells; (2) sexual innuendos sell more; and (3) controversy sells the best. If you are unsure about which books will sell, sure take a look at the cover, but more importantly read the dialogue covers and trust your gut. Some of these books may never take off, but for the time being it is easy to divest from your investment in these books online.
There are two major Kingsman films in the works at Fox/Disney. Kingsman: The Great Game is a much anticipated prequel to the two previous titles which will apparently star none other than Liam Neeson. It is set to hit theaters in 2020. Sometime thereafter we can expect Kingsman III which is untitled at this juncture.
Kingman is a classic example of why pure media speculation is poor speculation. There have been two blockbuster films, but the first appearance of the Kingsman in The Secret Service #1 is sitting in many retailers dollar bins. It is unclear whether this stuff will ever take off, but there is an increasingly large amount of Mark Millar related characters and titles appearing everywhere and some in the collectors community are taking notice. Millar properties are being pushed out on Netflix and on the verge of appearing there in mass. It will be interesting to see whether this will amount to over exposure or whether it is a situation where the “tide brings all the boats to shore.” In other words, will the release of all these properties at once overwhelm collectors or will the success of a single project drive interest in all of Millar’s other works?
Recently there has been a lot of speculation and innuendo surrounding the MCU expanding to feature some iteration of the Black Knight, Captain Britain and MI6 and/or Excalibur. There has been no official reports to this effect and it is interesting to contemplate whether it is reasonable for Disney to launch two new UK based major motion pictures under the umbrella of Fox and thereafter make a concerted push of other British comic book properties. This seems counter-intuitive to me, but it is certainly not dispositive of the issue. Nevertheless, it is my suggestion that there are safer, more probable courses of action for MCU television and film speculation than characters like Captain Britain and the Black Knight at this time.
Overperformance or Not they are BIG sales
This week saw some uncharacteristically monster auction results that have been talked about almost non-stop among collectors. These are a few of the more shocking ones. A CGC 2.5 copy of Marvel Family #1 (the 1st appearance of Black Adam) sold for $3,451.00. A CGC 9.6 copy of Amazing Spider-Man annual #1 (the 1st appearance of the Sinister Six) sold for $32,000.00. A CGC 9.8 copy of the He-Man and the Masters of the Universe #1 Wilkins variant sold for $3,250.00.
Season 3 of Marvel’s Jessica Jones will begin streaming Friday, June 14. For those of you looking to secure a copy of the first appearance of Jessica Jones for your personal collections, the character first appeared in Alias #1 (2001) and CGC 9.8 copies are barely crossing the $150.00 threshold at this point. The excitement around this character is long gone and I will be surprised if we see her character rebooted in any manner for the MCU at any time in the foreseeable future.
Jessica Jones season three is the final season of the final series remaining in the Marvel Netflix universe and the release of this season will mark the end of the business relationship between the two corporate giants. As most of you are already well aware, part of the Marvel/Netflix disengagement arrangement requires that these characters not be developed in any other manner by Disney for television or the big screen for a period of two years.
While I do not think there is much opportunity investing your money in books like the first appearance of Jessica Jones, I am more confident in the future of many of the other characters who appeared on Netflix’s Marvel content. It would not surprise me to see characters like Luke Cage, Iron Fist, the Punisher and Kingpin resurface on Hulu or on the big screen over the course of the next five to ten years. Books like Hero for Hire #1 have plummeted in price already and there may be an opportunity to purchase a high grade copy of this book at a disproportionately low purchase price over the course of the next few years. Remember to be very careful when purchasing a raw copy of this book. Many copies of this partially black cover have been the victim of amateur and/or professional color touch.
A comparable opportunity may present themselves with books like Marvel Premiere #15 (again if you are purchasing this book it is important to determine if the Marvel Value Stamp is intact and to remember that there a number of Mark Jeweler variants of this book floating around. While I don’t expect there to be as much opportunity with books like Amazing Spider-Man #50 (the 1st appearance of the Kingpin) and certainly less fluctuation in the price of Amazing Spider-Man #129 (the 1st appearance of the Punisher), there should certainly be some icy effect on these books after the recent price escalation that was driven by the characters appearance on Netflix.
These books are one easy example demonstrating that purchasing books when they are being ignored is the optimal time to buy. By contrast if you were already in possession of these books prior to the escalation, it may have been a shrewd business move to sell these books and move onto other properties, particularly under the circumstances where you would have been able to buy back and secure a nicer copy and/or replace your prior copy with considerable profit in hand as added gratuity.
Down goes Naomi
In case anyone hasn’t been paying attention, the much lauded and acclaimed Naomi book has returned to Earth from the astronomical highs the book reached just a few short weeks ago. So that you can appreciate just how much this title has cooled in a matter of a few short months, there were more copies of Jupiter’s Legacy #1 sold this week than copies of Naomi #1. CGC 9.8 copies of the A cover reached a peak of $588.00 but are now moving in the range of $200.00. NM Raw copies of the A cover are still selling around $75.00 on eBay. The B cover which many speculators championed early in the market has fallen to $100.00 in CGC 9.8 condition with the last raw copy sold in a live eBay auction bringing in $22.50.
It is unclear what the future holds for this character. Brian Michael Bendis recently told fans that we should be seeing her character in Superman and Legion of Super-Heroes books following the culmination of the first mini series. While this particular book has left a sour taste in many mouths, there is no denying that the book is a good read and that the character has potential. That being said, it is unclear whether collectors, readers and speculators will hold a grudge against the character as a result of boom/bust market created by early rabid speculation on this book.
Marvel committing to X-Men in a BIG way
Comic book stores will be getting free preview comics for Jonathan Hickman‘s upcoming House Of X and Powers of X books. The books will be delivered in conjunction with the San Diego Comic-Con (SDCC) which kicks off on July 17th. There is no question that as we approach SDCC many will surmise that we will receive some news about the future of X-Men related properties on the big screen. I would not jump to this conclusion; however, it is reasonably safe to conclude that Hickman’s books will be used as source material for whatever forthcoming X-Men reboot will be generated by Disney.
As I have mentioned in prior Weekend Updates, now is the time to pick up key first appearances of undervalued X-Men first appearances ahead of the market. Particularly if you are in a position where you are able to hold onto these books for the long haul. Expect for the first appearances of characters featured in Hickman’s House of X and Powers of X books see some mild speculative interest as these are the characters that more probable to make it to the big screen.
The following rumors are unconfirmed, but are being heard around the world of comics. Speculate on the veracity of these rumors at your own risk. Many are suggesting that reliable sources are indicating that Power Pack is in development. This may be a recycled rumor from 2017 which is the last time that there were voices in the collector community championing Power Pack as a spec play. Nevertheless, copies of this book are moving with haste on eBay with one live auction for a raw NM closing in on the $50.00 mark and VF/NM copies routinely selling in the $25.00 range.
Apparently insiders at Marvel are trying to decide the most effective way to introduce Wade Wilson into the MCU. A number of options are being discussed including a new solo film, which may or may not be titled Deadpool 3; a Disney+ and/or Hulu limited series; and three have also been rumblings that Deadpool will be introduced into MCU continuity in Spider-Man 3. This last rumor regarding Spider-Man 3 is particularly interesting because within 48 hours the same people pushing the veracity of this rumor were then suggesting that Venom would be making an appearance in the 3rd Spider-Man film. I do not believe that any of these rumors are anything more than conjecture and/or wishful thinking and would discourage you from giving too much credence to them. There has been a lot of interest in the Deadpool/Spider-Man angle and Deadpool #11 (1994) appears to be the book to have with VF/NM copies online moving into the $35.00 to $45.00 price range. This has always been a popular cover and it appears that some speculators are picking this book up because they don’t believe there is much room to get hurt if the cross-over rumors are untrue.
There have been a number of other rumors regarding a Metal Men DC comic series, a suggestion that Kazar was going to be introduced in a sequel to the forthcoming X-Men film series and a few other rumors which are being peddled as “insider information.” I would highly discourage you from making any sort of investment in these properties based upon alleged “insider information.” That kind of scenario is ripe for market abuse and is far from a shrewd investment strategy. There is no speculative play to be had
Also filed in the “I’ll believe when I see it category” is a recent report by WeGotThisCovered.com that Ironheart will be replacing Iron-Man in the MCU. This report was picked up by a number of other news outlets including looper.com which did a reasonably thorough investigation of the validity of the rumor. As explained above, “anonymous insider source(s)” may be trustworthy when they are used by major news outlets like the New York Times to break the Watergate case, but these kinds of sources have less journalistic credence when they are routinely used to champion alleged “scoops” which sound more like speculation and conjecture than hard news stories. My advise is that you proceed with the utmost caution in response to any of these unsubstantiated rumors.
I hope you enjoyed this installment of Weekend Update. That’s all for this week. I’ll be back next week with more news. In the interim, “Happy hunting You bunch of savages!”
– Nico, Esq.