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2009 MARKET REPORT
COMIC No 2: £3025 - MONTY ARTWORK £2590
Comic No 2, complete with 2mm trim to right-hand cover edge, made no negative
difference to the successful bidder who had researched it through our new ComicSearch
facility and was well aware of its rarity. In general, number one comic issues
from the Thirties were produced in high quantities for all the obvious publicity
reasons and then when sales were analysed, second and third issues settled down
to a lower print run. Publishers DC Thomson were masters of production even back
then having conceived the breakthrough Beano and Dandy titles for a burgeoning
youth market in the first place.
the War Years continue to find £30-60 a copy depending on grades and 1944's lower
grade Xmas and New year issues brought £185. Plum pud all round.
war year issues aren't just about Beano and Dandy rarities, a bound volume of
1944 Tip Top starring Happy Andy and Playful Pete with a Gene Autry back cover
adventure was bid to £297 for its 26-issue complete year.
year of 1947 Beanos in a bound volume might have found Jimmy And His Magic Patch
quite staggered in 2009 to see £800 for 25 copies starring himself. Quite a journey
from 2p - £32 each, he could get new breeks for that money.
one of DC Thomson's Big Five, often featured true exploits and issue 210 from
the complete year for 1937 featured the 80-year anniversary of The Abolition Of
Slavery with an emotive front cover and the story of the legendary John Brown
and his heroic struggle to free the Negro slaves in the southern United States.
This bound volume was complete with most of its free gifts and its extraordinary
high grade led to a £385 winning bid. 1938 and 1939 will be offered in March 2010.
collectors are used to finding their comics with 'orrible rusty staples, often
reduced to a powdery dark stain where shiny tinplate was once secured. To come
across a continuous original collection where said staples had been removed by
the owner to prevent this from happening was a far-sighted and genuine rarity.
Complete years of 1937 and 1938, with many free gifts enclosed were bid to £385
and £390 respectively. £8 a pristine copy.
a few early Knock-Outs from the same collection and six issues numbered 39-44
included the Grand Xmas Number and were bid to £155; over £25 each. Further lots
in half-dozens: 21-26, 27-32 and 33-38 garnered similar high values.
Beanos were well represented in two yearly bound volumes for 1950 and 1956. Pansy
Potter was really in Wonderland at £616 and Leo Baxendale's streetwise Kids bashed
artwork of Dennis The Menace is scarce with a piece coming up every few years
and Davy Law's brilliant rendition of Dennis steamrollering his way into the wall
via his soapbox cart, the girlies dollies and Dad' toe needed £1176 to soothe
adventure of how Oor Wullie came to get a stamp album every bit as good as Specky
Munro's after only a week, starting with Soapy Suter's stamp on his foot (that
old yin) and ending with his great pile 'o' letters from Sunday Post readers brought
£694 for a clever and funny story superbly illustrated by the master - Dudley
work is sought out by a hard core of collectors worldwide and when his magnificent
draughtsmanship is centred around the Eagle's true life serial; Montgomery Of
Alemein, then rarity enters that already heady mix. With inks that often fade
quite early with exposure to natural light, this reasonably fresh piece was strongly
bid to £2,590.
Bellamy artwork starred the Eagle's Heros The Spartan with an all-action centre
page spread showing the Spartans' fighting their way out of the Roman stockade.
£2,420. Some uprising.
star of our auction was The Lion Picture Library. Offered here in its 1-136 issue
run complete in eleven bound volumes the Lion roared to a blood-curdling £1,490.
Who's the king of the jungle, then.
1960s strength Beano complete years for 1963 and 1969 went for £385 and £390 respectively.
These larger format issues were always prone to foxing and even spot-free (but
not Gnasher-free) copies used to fetch a few pounds each. Make that £8 each (but
complete years now find a healthy premium).
Our US golden
Age section starred All Star Comics #21 with 1944 wartime adventures of The Justice
Society Of America. £239 was tendered for a Fine copy here. We offered a strong
run of CGC mid-graded Batman and Detective issues with Detective #145 CGC graded
7.5 the pick of the bunch at £180.
The Bold #28 heralded the first appearance of The Justice League Of America and
presentable copies are really hard to find. Our [vg+] cents copy had high cover
gloss and no major defects - Justice at £480. There was also a case for Vampirella
#1, albeit a CGC enclosed one at 7.0, and Frank Frazetta's cover art rewarded
the lady with £143.
#1 featured Bill Everett's gentlemens' club art throughout - page after page of
headlights and lingerie panels, as close to Playboy as a comic can get, whilst
by her side a certain (not so) jolly green giant was taking no notice whatsoever;
mind you, he was in a death-grip with Wolverene. The beauty sashayed to £71 whilst
the beast , CGC graded at a rare 9.4, lifted £1050.
life inspiration for The Beano's Dennis The Menace has been revealed as a mechanic
from New Zealand. Robert Fair, who is now 62, was a childhood friend of the daughter
of Dennis's creator, Davy Law, and a frequent visitor to their home. Mr Fair emigrated
35 years ago after joining the Merchant Navy and he has only just found out that
his pranks formed the basis of one of the most popular strips in comic book history.
The secret has been revealed by Law's daughter, Rosemary, who was herself the
inspiration for Beryl The Peril. Davy Law died in 1971.
a little brat when he was a boy and my father based Dennis's energy, movement
and sense of mischief on him," she said. Mr Fair added: "I remember reading Dennis
The Menace as a boy and all these years I have never known that was me, that was
my character. I think it's fantastic."
No need to
ask what he's going to rename the dog, then.
Comic Book Auctions Ltd.