Weekend Update with Nico

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This is your Weekend Update! 

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Please watch HBO’s the Watchmen 

 

James Lamborghini and I may come to blows over his disdain for HBO’s the Watchmen.  The series is smart and frankly I can’t understand how people aren’t as obsessed with this series as I am.  Admittedly, the first two episodes are slow. The third episode is electric. It is a riveting story that is told with such a command for the characters that I don’t believe Alan Moore will find fault with this rendition.  If you have just dipped your toes in the water, kicked them around trying to gauge the temperature and not jumped in head first – do yourself a favor. This show could be something really special.

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A Watchmen #1 CGC 9.8 sold on eBay for $850.00.  I don’t understand this sale because it there are other cheaper copies available.  I know the seller and hope that he doesn’t get a return with an empty box. The book is moving slowly but surely.  I have stashed a way a number of copies, but not enough. That being said, I’m a homer for the Watchmen. I love Alan Moore and believe that this book changed comics more than any comic published in the last 50 years.
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Watchmen #1 cgc 9.8

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If you are a Watchman fanatic than I’m sure you are familiar with DC Spotlight #1.  This is a book I never see at shows.  I’m not sure if that is because no one cares or it is truly rare.  This cameo appearance doesn’t interest me, but it does interest some.  For those who are interested in this book, remember that it was a nothing book until around 2015.

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DC Spotlight #1.jpg
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What I am more interested in is a first print copy of Mayfair DC Heroes Watchmen Sourcebook.  I’m less interested in the Taking out the Trash module, and no I have not played a role playing game (sans. ex-girlfriends) since I was a kid but this sourcebook was released in 1986 by Mayfair games and it is the ONLY prequel story for Watchmen that was not only approved by but worked on by Alan Moore.

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Watchmen Sourcebook
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What else interests me are the precursor characters that Allan More based the Watchmen characters on.  It is well settled that Dr. Manhattan is based on Captain Atom. The first appearance of Captain Atom is a Steve Ditko classic Space Adventures #33 (1960).  The last few sales were back in September when two copies moved on eBay. On September 30th a CBCS 5.5 sold for less than the $879.99 asking price when a best offer was accepted.  Prior to this sale, a CGC 3.5 sold for $525.00.

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Space Adventures #33
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Nite Owl is based on the Blue Beetle who first appears in Captain Atom #83 (1966). This book is relatively inexpensive insofar as a CGC 9.4 sold for $125.00 on September 29th.  The 1967 Blue Beetle #1 sells for significantly more money and also features the first appearance of the question which is the character that Rorschach’s character is based upon. A CGC 9.2 copy of Blue Beetle #1 (1967) sold for $559.01 on November 1st.

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Captain Atom #83 .jpg
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The first appearance of Peter Cannon, the character Ozymandias, is based on, is in  Atomic Thunderbolt #1 (1946).  Like the rest of these books, it is not a common book and incredibly tough in high grade (like all Charlton books).  There are two recent sales of Thunderbolt #1 on GPA. The most recent was a $120.00 sale in February of 2019. The second most recent sale was a $190.00 sale in February of 2019.
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Atomic Thunderbolt #1
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Silk Spectre, who I am confident is far more interesting following episode three of the HBO series, is based on the character Nightshade.  The first appearance of Nightside is in Captain Atom #82 (1966) and copies are reasonably inexpensive.  The same can not be said for the first appearance of Comedian a/k/a The Peacemaker.  Following reports that John Cena will be playing the Peacemaker in the forthcoming Fightin’ Five #40.  We’ve been talking about this book for a long time now and if you didn’t already secure an inexpensive copy, it’s probably too late to find one.  It is well past the time to find an inexpensive copy online.

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Captain Atom #82
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Do I believe that these books have increased collectability because of the Watchmen HBO series?  Absolutely. Clearly there are going to be collectors who are going to be digging into the Watchmen mythos all over again.  Do I expect explosive growth on any of these books, not necessarily. However, there are so few copies of these books it will only take a few sales to wipe every copy off eBay.  It is much easier to manipulate Golden Age markets than it is to pump the price tag on newer books which is a common myth of the “pump and dump” proclaimers.

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If the show takes off in the way that myself and many others are beginning to believe that it can, don’t be surprised if a shark takes the initiative to buy up all these classic books.  To give you some indication of how easy it is for this to happen there’s little more than 50 slabbed copies of Atomic Thunderbolt #1 on the census, 75 copies of Space Adventures #33, and a mere 13 copies of Fightin’ Five #40.  

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X-Men books
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Jonathan Hickman has been churning out hits left and right.  Everyone is excited about the X-Men again and it is quickly becoming more and more difficult to secure copies of key X-Men related books at the current rock bottom prices.  Interest in X-Men #129 continues to grow as fans realize just how important both Emma Frost and Kitty Pride are to the X-universe.  

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What I want to do is think about characters with comparable upside.  The two cheapest spec books is the X-universe are the first appearance of Bishop (Uncanny X-Men #282 look for newsstands but don’t forget about the 2nd print gold cover) and the first appearance of Fantomex (New X-Men #128/129).  Neither of these books is particularly rare, but one appearance on the big screen for either anti-hero could catapult them into a household name. Regardless of whether either character appears in a film any time in the next ten years, both characters will get major treatment by Marvel in due time.  I believe that both characters have the potential to be mega stars. Now is the time to buy these books.

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Uncanny X-Men #282
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To a lesser degree, I like books like Uncanny X-Men #244 (the first appearance of Jubilee), Generation X #40 (the first appearance of Monet St. Croix), and X-Men #4 (1992)(the first appearance of Omega Red.)

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There are also some Silver Age X-Men books that I think are still good buys.  Specifically, I like X-Men #14 (the first appearance of the Sentinels), X-Men #17 (the first appearance of Juggernaut) and X-Men #54 (first appearance of Havok).

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A couple other books to keep on your radar are X-Men #205 (the first appearance of Hope Summers, remember there’s a Campbell ratio variant); X-Force #11 (the first appearance of Domino, look for the newsstand), and Uncanny X-Men #184 (the first appearance of Forge). In reference to Psylocke, I encourage you to go big or go home.  I like Captain Britain #8 not New Mutants Annual #2. Would I leave New Mutants Annual #2 behind at a dollar sale? Of course not. But Captain Britain #8 is a big boy book and one that I believe you will be happy you paid for down the road.

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The point it basically that there are a ton of x-men related books that have a lot of meat on the bone.  Hickman’s re-imagining of the x-universe is unlike anything anyone has down with the characters in 30-40 years.  With the forthcoming Disney re-launch, you can make money betting on Mutants.


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Warner Media Spec 

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We were talking about Green Lantern, Sandman, and the Watchmen well before they were announced.  We were also the first news outlet to report about the Strange Adventures entertainment trademark and the virtues of Adam Strange speculation.  Where will Warner Media go next?

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My strategy is to stock pile things like the first appearance of the already announced/optioned characters like Sweet Tooth, the Invisibles, Blue Beetle and New Gods/Mister Miracle/Big Barda/Darlseid.

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That being said, I am a proponent of classic books with long term appeal.  I look down the road at things like Justice League Dark (Constantine, Swamp Thing, Zatanna, and Deadman).  As I’ve mentioned before, I think this is the time to emphasize female characters because Warner Media hired their first female CEO.  This makes Supergirl and Batgirl more appealing than ever. I think these kind of properties with proven track records that are low risk investments with big potential upside if there is a successful media project.

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I believe that we will see more one off DC Black Label films.  The Joker has now earned more profit than Avengers: End Game. In fact, today it was announced that the Joker was the most profitable comic book movie of all time.  That kind of profit encourages imitation and follow through. Don’t be surprised if we see a Lex Luther film or a darker iteration of Harley Quinn, or a standalone John Constantine film in the next few years that are comparable in scope to the Joker.

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I hope you enjoyed this installment of the 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.

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2 comments

  • I think 1st Juggernaut is X-men #12, I’m sure you just had a typo. Love these reports Nico!

  • Another underrated watchman book is Amazing Heroes #97. I still don’t think a lot of people now about this early appearance. I believe it pre-dates #1 as well (not 100% on that). All the characters are on the cover front and center too. It is also a mostly black cover which makes it difficult to find in high grade.

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