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SPRING 2014 MARKET REPORT

BEANO No 1: 3,556.00
INCEDIBLE HULK #1: 1,925.00



With some minor edge tears and back cover foxing this [vg] copy of the first Beano comic with good page suppleness made 3556.00 and its condition puts it in the top 10 of the twenty-five or so issues that are known to exist.

 



The Union Jack title of 1905 published the first case of Sexton Blake Detective and although one of the bound volumes had a loose spine the near complete year took 271.00. Case solved.



We offered the first six years of Mickey Mouse Weekly from 1936-41 and our collectors knew that the 1940 and 42 were notoriously hard to find. The first year, illustrated above, was bid to 365 with the following five years totalling 850. Reaching 1215 the Mouse roared.

 



 

Three nice early issues of Radio Fun make 32 each and George a jolly gee-gee.



The first UK reprints of Superman were published in the Triumph between 1939 and 1940 and the 10 issues offered here were in pretty low grade. That did not worry two determined US bidders who drove the 35-45 estimate all the way to 348. Action comics.

 



Our Wullie artwork has provoked strong bidding over the last two catalogues, mainly because the earlier pieces from the late 1930s (like the one featured here) are really difficult to find. With editor’s script in the margins this example returned £770. Help ma boab!

 



This Dandy No 83 printer’s cover proof with Dandy editor, Albert Barnes checking signature made £187.

 



Gerald G Swan’s quirky titles, Comicolour, Kiddy Fun, New Funnies and Slick Fun were all represented here and chased to over £10 a copy at £231.

Of similar ilk, these two Whizz Bang Comics annuals were published during the war and their rarity was rewarded with a £220 winning bid.


The complete bound volume of The Beano for 1958 with the first appearance of Jonah by Ken Reid and 8 page ads for No 1 issues of Beezer and Bunty realised £672, a Morgyn The Mighty £12 each.

 


Whilst a complete year of The Dandy for 1950 in two bound volumes made £495, the complete year for 1952 with issues retrieved from their original bound volume found £144. As many of our customers know, it’s all about the condition.


Dynamic Thrills was a title that almost parodied its hard-boiled US counterparts and this rare G G Swan imprint featuring Ron Embleton and John McCail artwork thrilled at £200 – brilliant value in this author’s opinion.



A Very Fine 1954 Wizard bound volume was enhanced by the only illustration of The Dandy’s Desperate Dan (by Dudley Watkins) on the cover of issue 1492 to advertise the impending Boyhood of Desperate Dan text story inside. Also ‘serialised in pictures’ for the first time, The Truth About Wilson created another milestone for the title. £297 or £6 a pop for the world’s greatest athlete.

 

 

Sold in 2003 for £140, The Eagle’s PC 49 reappeared after 11 years in an artwork page by wartime artist, John Worsley whose endearing claim to fame was, as a prisoner of war, to fabricate a life-size model of a naval officer who was brought out at roll call to cover the original officer’s escape. Later to be filmed as ‘Albert, R.N.’ Many of our bidders were as enthused by the artist’s history as they were by the artwork and a collector from Paris beat all the others to succeed with a winning bid of £441. French resistance.


 

Dan Dare Settles Accounts was complete in its 9 page story board format where various illustrations for the Eagle’s Venus storyline were re-worked and modified by the Frank Hampson studio for film strip viewing. Spaceships away at £478


Prices for TV Century 21 comics have plateaued over the last few years as quite a few collections have appeared on the market place. Whilst the early issues can now be had in average grades for £15 each, later issues have stabilised at a fiver a piece but these prices can double in grades of Fine - Very Fine. Illustrated here are numbers 21-40 in [vg] which sold for £115


Our US section started with an early key issue. Century Of Comics from 1933 was a Milco-Malt milkshake giveaway and reckoned to be the third comic published. Starring Depression era favourites, Mutt & Jeff, Joe Palooka and Reg’lar Fellas it had failed to sell in one of our auctions last year but was this time snapped up for £1,072.


Bound beautifully in seventeen volumes Classic Comics/Classics Illustrated was complete with all its 169 issues including 99 first editions. Having been purchased in a ‘bring and buy’ sale in America by an enterprising UK holidaymaker some years ago they have now migrated back to Texas for £1072. Big hat, big cattle.

 

Detective Comics #90 had some light creases and a dealer stamp to the cover but bidding was undeterred at £201. Watch out for more Golden Age Detective and Batman issues with Joker and Batmobile covers in our upcoming May auction.


Witches Tales 25 is collected for its grisly decapitation cover and in [vfn-] it headed off for £309.



Venus #18 is one of those ‘impossible to get in high grade’ issues so when this copy surfaced, CGC enclosed at 8.0, it was no surprise that a US bidder triumphed with a strong £1404.



In 2001 we auctioned the ‘Uncle Stan’ collection, a run of Silver Age comics and memorabilia sent to the UK in the 1960s by Marvel creator, Stan Lee to his nephew, John. Each lot was accompanied by a copy of the letter of provenance signed by Stan Lee, countersigned and numbered by ourselves. Issue 48 was the highlight of twelve Fantastic Four ‘Uncle Stan’ lots offered in this catalogue by the original buyer and with high cover gloss and cream pages it sold for £330, about double its Overstreet value.

 

 


This Hulk #1 pence copy was in pretty fresh condition although a light cover length crease and small corner piece missing were its noticeable defects resulting in a [fn-] grade. A winning bid of £1,925 showed that the market in these Marvel Silver Age keys is getting even stronger.

 

 

Journey Into Mystery #83 is another of those key books but this one a copy with cover edges professionally restored and spine neatly reinforced. With a grade of [Apparent vfn-] £1300 showed further confidence in the burgeoning marketplace.

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Our X-Men #1 finished off this trio of high achievers with a [fn] £1600.

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This [fn-] example of Phantom Lady #17 was taken just short of £1700.

 

Phantom Lady #17 is THE good-girl art cover. Illustrated in 1948 by the brilliant Matt Baker with bondage and headlights to the fore, Sandra Knight’s alter ego was lusted over by a generation of late Forties drop-outs whose main purpose in life was to focus on the various ‘lingerie panels’ featured within. The Lady and her ilk were ‘exposed’ in Fredric Werthem’s 1954 moralistic opus, Seduction Of The Innocent which reached a wider mature audience in all 49 US State libraries where, presumably, it was thumbed through for exactly the same reason.

 

Malcolm Phillips
Director
Comic Book Auctions Ltd.

 
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