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WINTER 2012 MARKET REPORT
BEANO BOOK 1: £3,150.00 – INCREDIBLE HULK #1: £1,787.00
‘A robust, tight-spined copy’ described this first Beano Book and Pansy Potter’s balancing act was rewarded with a winning bid of £3150.
This fresh copy of the Dandy’s second annual made £770. Korky’s trapeze is still flying high.
Individual early issues of Dandy and Beano are still fetching premium prices and this example, No 53 from 1938, continued that trend with £150 in [vg+] grade.
Here is The Beano No 195, a 1942 Christmas propaganda war issue, which exhorted us that ’Jerry won’t be merry this Xmas if you do your bit - Collect Waste Paper!’ This issue in [vg+] collected £275
We continued with complete years of the iconic Picture Post magazine and the 52 issues from 1944 made £218, or £4 a copy. Can you spot the film star?
One of the first British comics published, Comic Cuts is rare in any condition with about nine known examples of the No 1. With some cover grubbiness that might be expected after 122 years, this example garnered £443. A following lot of issues 2 and 3 made £308 and a further worn 9 issues, also from 1890-91, found £198.
Magnets generally sell for £1-2 each and often have worn or replaced spines. We offered a selection of early issues between Nos 6 – 620 covering the years 1908-1919 including a facsimile edition of No 1 and totalling 192 issues in varying grades. £495 had them winging their way to Australia. A further run from 1920 will be in our next auction catalogue in February.
A Very Good Minus copy of Film Fun No 1 (1920) introducing the fun-filled adventures of Charlie Conklin, Ben Turpin and Winkle had its free gift photo-plate of silent screen star Fatty Arbuckle. £275 was winkled. The following lot was a double sided flyer advertising Film Fun 1 and this rare page promoted £44.
Our Rupert annual No 1 did not sell despite its near complete dust jacket as the vendor’s firm £900 reserve was not matched. The same fate was suffered by the following lot, the No 2 1937 annual which also failed to meet its firm £500 reserve.
Perhaps the most sought after wartime Rupert annual, that of 1942, was taken to a strong £341 in [vg] grade. 1943 went for £110 and 1945 and 1946 fetched £66 each.
Thrillers are still keenly collected and 2 bound volumes, some loose copies and War Thriller from 579-588 totalled 105 issues which highlighted Leslie Charteris’s The Saint, W E John’s Storm Troop Of The Baltic Skies and Maxwell Grant’s The Shadow. £265 re-enforced their fan base.
Hotspur was one of the most popular of DC Thomson’s ‘Big Five’ story papers. There were 44 issues to the year of 1941, some issued fortnightly due to paper and dye-stuff wartime shortages. No shortage of interest though as a hot £275 spurred the bidding.
Reginald Heade illustrated paperbacks have always been well collected, not so much for their literary content as for their lurid prurient covers. Vice Rackets Of Soho, Ladies Of The Red lamp and Sinful Sisters left nothing to the imagination. Cheap thrills at £26 each.
Superman’s first full colour Australian reprint starred the eponymous super-hero with Lois Lane Superwoman in the lead story. With US Action and Superman early issues finding ever increasing mega values this is an inexpensive way to collect quality colour reprints of the same era and it will be no surprise if at some stage in the future these Oz alternatives take off in value. £220.
Buck Jones will still need to be a Fighting Sheriff as, with hindsight, we offered too many issues in one lot and they did not sell. We will offer them again in February although Captain Flame 1 from this lot was bought privately for £40 after our auction’s close by a canny collector (with the vendor’s permission).
The Beano complete year for 1954 was in generally great condition. Issue 604 had the ever popular Dennis The Menace wrestling the back cover from Pansy Potter with a £606 takedown.
A good selection of Topper and Beezer Xmas and Fireworks issues Pop, Dick and Harried £170, or £8 a copy.
Classics Illustrated can get a fiver each in average grades but here was a selection of the rarer titles from the 1950s 1/3d series illustrated by British artists. Five issues - £220 - £44 each.
Buffalo Bill’s original front cover artwork from The Comet by Derek Eyles went back across the frontier to Canada for £275
These 1958 -59 complete years showcased Express Weekly in its heyday with Wulf The Briton by Ron Embleton, Gun Law by Harry Bishop, The Lone Ranger by Mike Noble and S.A.S The Men Who Dared by Graham Coton. £390 provided express delivery to the happy buyer who told us he would have paid quite a bit more if necessary.
The bound volume of 1957 Knockouts was offered here with the 1957 Annual. Sexton Blake, Johnny Wingco, Davy Crockett and Hoppy were happy with £176
Thriller Picture Library front cover artwork of The Iron Duke by Royal Academician, Sep Scott made £242 and below, Scott’s all-action Guns At Broken Bow from the same period, £275
Buster has a strong collector base and a half year in bound volume from 1956 tempted The Tin Teacher with £137 or a fiver each.
You don’t find much Leo Baxendale original artwork around and his 1973 Nellyphant scoffed £275.
The market for artwork over £1000 is iffy right now and there are only a few potential bidders for lots at this price line. From an estimate of £1400-1800 Dan Dare and The Mekon by Keith Watson struggled to make a sale and an after-hours £900 was accepted by the vendor who has had strong successes with us in the past.
Here was the complete 26 issue run of Fleetway’s Fantastic/Stupendous Super Library. Starring firm favourites The Spider and The Steel Claw. A vice-like grip ensured £331 for this great series.
The genteel Girl’s Crystal has her besotted followers and Mam’selle X and That Girl Patsy fluttered their eyelids sufficiently enough to encourage £280 for the complete year of 1962.
Joe 90 No 1 with free gift Mac’s Jet Car Kit was ready to assemble with the strapline ‘It Really Works!’ With £468 it really did.
We offered a fresh run of Mystic comics, the L Miller EC and Atlas pre-code reprints which you could find for a couple of quid each a short time ago. The 7 issues illustrated her made £88 and six other lots covering most of the run averaged between £6-12 each with notable exceptions of No 1 at £28 and No 54 with Avengers #1 cover at £30.
Kiddies comics generally don’t sell that well but that has changed recently with the Robin title starring TV favourites Andy Pandy and The Flower Pot Men. Here was the 1962 complete year ‘Office Pay Copies’ with details of artists, story writers and their remuneration neatly listed on each page. In those days successful Judge Dredd artist, John M Burns was paid £31.10.0d for a double page spread starring The Runaway Princess. A runaway £219 was paid in this auction. More Robin and Swift in February.
This beautifully co-ordinated and painted board by Don Lawrence from 1968 made its reserve of £650. The Trigan Empire hasn’t fallen, it just stumbled a bit here.
Tigers are roaring and Roy is scoring as bound volumes for 1963 make £350.
Before estimating the price of this scarce paperback starring The Wizard’s Truth About Wilson we had researched several copies available on the internet at prices between £750-2000 each (yes, really). We had therefore hoped that a £550-650 estimate was pretty realistic but this proved not to be the case as £205 became the winning bid. We suppose those other copies are still heavily available?
Our US section started with a good selection of Golden Age titles and this 3 issue lot was all about Super Rabbit No #1 who had Hitler and Hirohito in his headlights for £140.
Here were two examples of the pre-code Dark Mysteries title, The #1 issue and #19’s bondage cover. Both in [vg], both at £99.
Our Superboy Golden Age run came to a close with #9 from 1950 standing out with a strong £111.
The Brave And The Bold #28 was in pretty ropy condition with a top cover piece missing and the low grade of Fair. Such is its scarcity that £152 was the winning bid for the first appearance of the JLA. JLA #1 was a bigger kettle of super-heroes and this Fine Minus cents copy was chased to a justice league £451.
Originally from the pedigree ‘Uncle Stan’ collection, this cents copy of Hulk #1 sold for £770 in our March 2001 auction. Here it was once more, complete with our letter of authenticity, and although the spine had split further it realised £1787. Incredible.
The perks of my job occasionally include a brush with the media. On December 4th The Dandy issued its final printed copy and was destined for its ‘new’ life in Internetland. You know, that place where there is so much info that after half-an-hour the first thing you google is your brain. Anyway, I have an old battered copy of the first Dandy from 1937 and had emailed BBC, ITV, Sky, Channel 4, Dave, anyone who knows me, to see if they were interested in doing a piece.
To my surprise the BBC phoned and on the day of its last issue, The Dandy and I had a slot with BBC Radio Devon (scheduled for a few minutes, ending up in a phone-in for most of the programme) where most of the listeners were saddened by the Dandy’s demise, but whilst they were on, how much were those very old Beanos worth they had in the attic, you know, the ones from 1997....This was then picked up by BBC TV News who scheduled an appearance for us that evening at 7pm sending a car for me at 5.30 and if I could bring along a few other bits and pieces that would be great. This all went quite well, the presenter reverently picking up the Dandy and asking if any acid residue from his fingertips would affect the comic’s condition. I just asked jokingly if he’d washed his hands that day which, on reflection, didn’t go down that well. Apparently this show had been observed by BBC News 24, the rolling world TV news service, and their producer was waiting outside to whisk me downstairs to their studio for their 8.00pm prime-time news slot. The producer was a young lady with impeccable English whose line ‘We wondered if, whilst you were here, you might consider an appearance on our world service programme..’ was followed by my response ‘Bloody Nora’
An identical studio two floors below was this time occupied by a male and female presenter with The Dandy between them and me to one side. Within seconds we were live and whilst the chap only remembered Shoot magazine from his childhood, his cohort was much more condescending. Whilst flipping through the Dandy’s pages she thought the characters and illustrations a bit dense and stodgy. Not as stodgy, I countered, as our insurers will be if you pick up the comic again with that biro in your hand...
As I travelled back in the taxi contemplating my lifetime ban from the BBC it was just as well I had something brilliant to read on the mirthful trip home.
Comic Book Auctions Ltd.