*Marvel: By 1982, Wolverine’s status as the breakout star of the ‘New’ X-Men had become evident, and an A-List team of Chris Claremont, Frank Miller and Josef Rubinstein was assembled to give him a solo spotlight in a four-issue mini which saw Logan return to Japan. A few years later, he was awarded an ongoing series in 1988, from Claremont and John Buscema, kicking off the whole subplot with him being a crime-lord in Madripoor (in his copious spare time, between being a member of every Marvel team ever!). We’re chuffed to have both his debut issues from the 1980s back in stock; the 1982 #1 is FN/VF p £45, and the 1988 #1 is VF p £30.
*Marvel: The tabloid-sized Treasury Editions published by Marvel from 1974 to the 1980s may not have caught on as a permanent format, but they certainly have their fans, particularly among a certain generation in the UK whose earliest exposure to the iconic Marvel characters was via these huge compendiums of classic adventures! In addition to the ‘baseline’ Marvel Treasury Series, Marvel launched a few short-run series in the same format, one of which was Marvel Special Edition, an oversized reprint (in issues #1 and #2) of the first six issues of Star Wars monthly, which in its turn adapted the very first Star Wars film (or the fourth, depending on how seriously you take all that). We have Marvel Special Edition #1 & #2 back in stock, as well as a selection of Marvel Treasury Edition ‘proper’ featuring the Fantastic Four, Hulk, Spider-Man, Thor, Conan, the Defenders, and others. Highlights include #4, in which the Conan saga ‘Red Nails’ is reprinted, with Barry Smith’s art looking even more exquisite at the larger size, and #12, with an all-new Howard the Duck eggstravaganza! In addition, we have two Kolossal Kirby Klassics: the Marvel Treasury Special, Captain America’s Bicentennial Battles and 2001: A Space Odyssey, in which Kirby adapted the highly-acclaimed Kubrick sci-fi movie, before extrapolating it into an ongoing series.
*Marvel: We’ve got all our ducks in a row here at 30th C., with a substantial restock of Howard the Duck, the cult satirical series created by Steve Gerber. Gerber took endless potshots at the wider world of the 1970’s with his tale of a misanthrophic anthropomorph trapped in, as later taglines averred, “A World He Never Made” (which is a damn silly tagline, if you stop to think – I mean, who do you know who has made a world lately? But I digress). Be that as it may; this cult series, illustrated at first by Frank Brunner, then (mostly) by Gene Colan, became a short-lived sensation, fizzling out only when Gerber, in his own words, decided that the political and social scene was beyond further satire, and lesser writers simply couldn’t make the Duck fly. We have most of the first 27 issues newly available, from #1 (VF- £22.50) upward; full details as ever in our online catalogue.
*Marvel: Following even more sales on everyone’s favourite barbarian, we are pleased to be able to restock our Conan box with a handful more of his adventures, between #22 & #48, mostly in nice grades and featuring #37, the issue with Neal Adams art. Consult our catalogue for details.
*Marvel: Several issues of Incredible Hulk added to our inventory between #160-183, including several previously missing from our listings and featuring the first Wendigo appearance in #162; consult our catalogue for grades and prices.
*Miscellaneous 1940-1959: It’s not often that an issue of Phantom Lady from the original Fox run that commenced in 1947 comes our way, so we’re particularly pleased this week to present #15 (the third issue in the series, which started at #13). With three exquisite Phantom Lady stories and a gorgeous cover by Matt Baker, the absolute king of the good girl artists of the 40s and 50s, this is a highly prized collectable. We have graded this copy as Apparent VG+, and noted careful pro-level restoration i.e. three right edge sealed cover tears, a fill at top spine and staple reinforcement. All in all though, a bright, clean copy that presents well with a clear, unspoilt cover image. Priced at £350.
*Annuals: Plucky guardians of the good abound in this week’s Annuals update, with Dan Dare Annuals (new and classic, from ’74, ’79 and ’91), Judge Dredd from 1986, and a selection of later classic Eagle Annuals, opening with 1966 and continuing with a range from 1972 to 1975 – in the grand tradition of British comics, the Annuals continued to come out for several years after the weekly’s demise! Those are all in the Boys’ Adventure Sub-Section of our Annuals listing, but in Film & TV Related Annuals, we have one of the greatest British action heroes of the later 20th Century – Danger Mouse, from 1984 to 1987!
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: We’ve just added a full run of classic Eagle Volume 9 (1958) to our listings, including #36 which includes a free BEA booklet and the Christmas issue. This run includes three classic Dan Dare stories, Reign Of The Robots (the last few episodes) and the whole of The Ship That Lived and The Phantom Fleet.
*TV & Film Related Comics: Another year of our massive TV Century 21 update, featuring the televisual brainchildren of Gerry Anderson – Thunderbirds, Fireball XL5, Stingray, and, most significantly for this year, Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons, tying in with the then-latest TV series. The indestructible agent of SPECTRUM fought his never-ending battle against the alien mind-controlling Mysterons, aided by the stunning artwork of Mike Noble. The Captain Scarlet strip premiered in TV Century 21 #141, which is pictured in VG with the original Free Gift – 3-D Video Specs – in FA, at £30. We have most, though not quite all, of TV Century 21’s issues from 1967 – sorry, ‘2067’ – in stock, 70 new copies to our lists (including many duplicated issues providing a variety of grades) in a year previously entirely unrepresented in our inventory. SORRY, #141 NOW SOLD
*Humour Comics: The veteran DC Thomson humour weekly, Dandy, is the focus of our Long Hot Summer event this week, with a spectacular array of oversized Specials dating from the very first. In 1964, following the success of the previous year’s Dandy-Beano Summer Special, it was decided to give both titles their solo Specials, and this example from 1964 is a GD/VG, sound and clean with moderate spine wear, and two small tears at the right cover edge. A hard act to follow, but we manage it with a consecutive, unbroken run of Dandy Summer Specials from 1965 through to 1982, in grades ranging from VG to FN, a stellar selection of hard-to-find editions in respectable grades, then wrap it up with a scattering from the turn of the century – including 2003, where they apparently had a Summer and a Holiday special that year! The 1960s Specials are very seldom seen in any grade, so we’ve pictured them here: 1964 GD/VG £175 (left), 1965 VG £50 (right), then below: 1966 FN £75, 1967 FN £60, 1968 VG £30, 1969 FN £40 and 1970 FN £40. All the later issues, of course, graded and priced in our online catalogue.
On a regular cycle, we sweep through our entire stock to delete sold items and keep our listing as up to date as possible. We’ve just finished deleting sold items from the following file in our American section:
As of the time of writing, this category is bang up to date, with every item listed available.
In our clearance bargain area this week, two of the most venerable comedy story papers of the 20th Century are making way on our shelves. We have 61 issues of Magnet, including 2 facsimiles of #1 from 1908 (with and without wraparound cover) and 1 facsimile of #194 from 1911, plus 58 original issues between 1934 and 1939, including 2 Christmas issues. These are augmented by just 6 issues of Gem from 1915-1938 for a grand total of 67 issues at a clearance price of just £25. These fit into a small parcel box weighing 3 kg and UK postage if required would be a further £14. Conditions range between Fair and Good, with some a little better. Home to Billy Bunter of Greyfriars and Tom Merry of St Jims, these fondly-remembered comedy and adventure stories are an iconic part of British 20th Century literature. We really like these, but with over 3,000 issues in the series, we don’t have space to store any significant quantities and so they have to go!
Our spotlight on previously listed stock this week turns to Hurricane #1, complete with its Free Gift, one of the rarest of all accompanying gifts. In February 1964 Fleetway/IPC released Hurricane, a companion to their highly successful Valiant. Featuring in the lead a lightly comedic bruiser – ‘Typhoon Tracy, as opposed to ‘captain hurricane’ in the lead slot, Hurricane ploughed the expected row of adventure, war, sports and historical strips, but allocating several of them a longer run (5 pages, rather than the two or three that were the weekly standard), and with its slightly larger size, seemed to be aiming a little higher age-wise. The most famous alumnus of Hurricane, apart from Tracy himself, was ace racing driver ‘Skid Solo’, who had a decades-long career after Hurricane’s eventual absorption into Tiger. Because it had a regrettably short run, a mere 63 issues, Hurricane is highly sought after today, and this first issue, in a gleaming Fine condition, is made extra precious by the presence of the Free Gift which originally accompanied it – a punch-out cardboard model of the TSR2 fighter plane, not punched out (in this instance), but still in its original ‘flat’ form, albeit with the card having sustained a light horizontal fold at some time; the original rubber band used to launch it is missing (but easily replaced). We’ve graded the free gift as Very Good, and together the pair are on sale for £200.
Lately, we’ve had rather more cases than usual where reservations of items are being made, mostly from our Newsletter, and the would-be customer making the reservation does not subsequently pay. We request that you do not ask to reserve items that you don’t intend to buy. We need to issue this reminder from the ‘How To Order’ information on our website:
‘Once you’ve placed an order, we will set your item(s) aside. Payment is then expected within a maximum of 3 days; this means the day we notify you plus 2 working days. For example, if we notify you on Monday that the item(s) you ordered is available, we will hold it until close of business (6 pm UK time) on Wednesday; if payment is not received within this time, the item(s) will be placed back on sale.’
Please note that in many cases, where high demand items are reserved from our Newsletter, we often have several interested customers and items going back on sale will immediately be offered to the next-in-line.
*DC: Well, not quite the Teen Titans yet, as the name wasn’t coined at this time, but the ground-breaking Brave & Bold #54 teamed up three junior partners of DC’s major super-heroes – Kid Flash, Aqualad and Robin – against the villainy of the sinister Mr. Twister (no, not the twisted Mr. Sinister – that’s a different series!). Written by Bob Haney, Illustrated by Bruno Premiani, this proved to be such a hit that, with the addition of Wonder Girl, the resulting team enjoyed a long career that still continues today – and this is where it all got started! This is a VG/FN copy, bright cover colour and tight staples, with only a very small ‘scuff’ in the lower right cover corner (not affecting any crucial area of the cover image) preventing a still higher grade. VG/FN p £200. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*DC: Following the success of Green Lantern’s debut, what he lacked was an epic villain to match his power (sorry, but the ‘Puppet Master’ and the ‘Invisible Men’ didn’t cut it…). Issue #7 of Hal Jordan’s solo series provided that, with Sinestro, a former Green Lantern who turned rogue. Possessing all of Hal’s power and training – and more experience and savvy – Sinestro proved to be a major antagonist for GL, responsible over the decades for some major setbacks for Hal Jordan, the other members of the Green Lantern Corps, and the Guardians of the Universe. This issue sees the first appearance of the rogue GL of Korugar, though – presumably not to be spoilery – he doesn’t make a cover appearance. And in the back-up story, Hal’s pal Pieface gets turned into a seagull, because the 60s! This affordable copy of a key villain debut is generally in excellent shape, but it does have light pen writing on the cover (just above the ‘Bus Stop’ sign, and in the green beam, as far as the young lady’s pelvis). Because of that single flaw, we cannot grade it as better than GD-. Cents copy, on sale at £75. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: In the fourth issue of Marvel’s Avengers series, the already formidable team of Iron Man, Thor, Giant-Man and the Wasp was augmented by one of the legendary heroes from the past. Captain America returned to action after years in Post-WWII suspended animation, and rapidly became the acknowledged heart and soul of the Avengers, who have never flourished for long without him! This copy of an iconic issue is a very attractive FN+, virtually unmarred cover scene with only the faintest crease across Captain America’s face, just barely breaking the vivid, unfaded cover colour. With tight staples at spine and centrefold, sharp corners and superior interior page quality, this is a cents copy, with no pence price or overstamp, on sale at £1000 – you won’t find many better this side of the Atlantic! SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: One conspicuous exception to our habitual ‘vintage only’ policy are debut issues of significant characters, and there a few more significant debuts in the latter days of the 20th Century than that of cuddly brain-sucking symbiote Venom, who graduated from being a genetically modified costume in a jar to the fully-fledged Emperor of Spidey’s Rogue’s Gallery! ‘The Venom Trilogy’, is Amazing Spider-Man #298-300, leading up to the first full appearance of Venom. Having debuted in Secret Wars #8 as a semi-sentient blob which configured itself into Spider-Man’s new costume, the ‘symbiote’ became a regular feature in Spidey’s own series before being revealed as a malevolent alien parasite which disclosed its true agenda in these very issues! #298, with the first brief appearance of Eddie Brock (the man who would become Venom) and the beginning of Todd MacFarlane’s run as artist, is VF p £25; #299, with the first cameo of Venom himself, is VF p £30 and the big one, #300 (pictured) – the first ‘Full Venom’ – is VF p at £175. SORRY, SPIDEY #300 HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Seven special issues which introduced heroes or villains (and sometimes folks who played both sides) who would later loom large in the Marvel Universe. Avengers Annual #10, from 1981, brought us the first appearance of Rogue, the skill-sapping Southern Belle who became a pivot of the X-Men. Fantastic Four #36 featured the debut not only of the villainous FF – the Frightful Four – but of their distaff member, Medusa, later to be revealed as a member of Inhuman Royalty. Marvel Super-Heroes #12 saw the coming of Captain Marvel, warrior of the Kree Empire (and copyright-saving hasty gamble, but that’s another story) later Cosmic Defender of the Universe, and Cap’s distaff counterpart Ms. Marvel’s 18th issue presented the first full appearance of Mystique, soon to become a thorn in the side of the X-Men. Marvel Spotlight #32 brought along another champion of copyright, Spider-Woman; produced in haste to counter a rival company’s proposed Spider-Woman comic, she proved unexpectedly popular and returned in several solo series. New Mutants #25 saw the first fleeting appearance of Legion, currently the star of his own Marvel TV series. #8 of Jack Kirby’s 2001: A Space Odyssey presented the premiere of X-51, also known as Mister Machine and eventually Machine Man. Avengers Annual #10 is VF £25; Fantastic Four #36 is FA/GD p £25; Marvel Super-Heroes #12 is GD p £25; Ms. Marvel #18 is VF p £40; Marvel Spotlight #32 is VG/FN £15; New Mutants #25 is VF/NM p £15.75 and 2001 #8 is VF p £23.
*Marvel: The much-misunderstood Lord of Atlantis, Prince Namor the First (and is it just me who wonders why he isn’t ‘King’ Namor, by the way?) has been doing his anti-hero thing since the 1940s, but his career hit new heights after his Silver Age revival in FF #4, resulting in his own series in Tales to Astonish and then his own series. We’re duly honoured to welcome His Highness back into our humble establishment, with a significant top-up to his series from #24 through to close of play – #72, which saw the end of his Silver/Bronze series, though he has of course remained a major figure in the Marvel Universe ever since. Highlights of this run include the Defenders ‘pilot’ issues (#34 and #35) in which Namor joined up with the Hulk and Silver Surfer against the Avengers, inspiring Marvel’s 1970s ‘Non-Team’. 20 issues new in, in attractive yet affordable mid-grades.
*Marvel: [Back in February, we originally listed this post, but owing to a technical error, the corresponding comics were not added to our catalogue listing. That’s now been fixed, so here is the post again!]
“We’re always happy to see giant panty-wearing monsters” is a phrase one seldom expects to hear, but it’s certainly true here at 30th Century, as the pre-hero Marvel anthologies – usually featuring at least one enormous critter in a giant gusset bent on world domination – are spiralling ever upward in popularity and collectability. We have new entries for Journey Into Mystery (#78, a rare non-BPM issue starring a ‘Dr.Strange prototype’), Strange Tales (#95 with “The Two-Headed Thing” VG+ p £52, pictured) Tales to Astonish (#33, “Dead Storage”), and a selection of Tales of Suspense starring Monsterollo, the Creature From the Black Bog and Elektro, who graces the cover of TOS #13 right (VG+ p £70).”
*Vintage Magazine-Sized Comics: The black & white magazine incarnation of Conan’s shenanigans, Savage Sword of Conan, was the longest-running hit of Marvel’s magazine line, lasting a staggering 235 issues from its launch in 1974 until 1995, when Conan hung up his sandals and parted company with the House of Ideas. While earlier issues, up to just below the first 100, got limited distribution in the UK, later ones were not seen on these shores except in specialist shops, and lower print runs means that fewer copies enter the market. We’re therefore very pleased to have acquired 40 new issues to our listings, predominantly later issues. Commencing with #35 and then ranging from the mid-issue #60’s to #195, these are higher grade, averaging VF, with many NM among the selection.
*Alan Class Reprints: A further release of Alan Class certificated issues from the file copies of the publisher, each with a hand-signed certificate from Alan Class himself. This time it’s the short run title Out Of This World (1st series, which ran to 23 issues). Notable here is loads of Ditko content including some striking and memorable covers, plus, in #15, a Tale Of the Wasp reprinted from Tales To Astonish #52.
*Power Comics: Although Alan Class had been reprinting Marvel super-hero tales in his various titles from the early 1960s – and Len Miller presented some in his anthologies ‘Spellbound’ and ‘Mystic’ – it took until 1967 before a concerted attempt was made to reprint Marvel superheroes in sequential order. That was in the Power Comics weeklies, and after trials in Smash! Wham! and Pow!, they released Fantastic, a weekly devoted entirely to super-heroes, with Thor, Iron Man and the X-Men from the beginning, in glorious black & white and oddly re-edited for the UK market (such as changing American idioms for more intelligible jargon). We may mock – those of us who’d been reading the originals all along did – but for those benighted parts of the country where the American editions weren’t imported, this was a gift much appreciated, and many people’s first exposure to the Marvel Universe was in these pages. Fantastic proving a success, they followed it up later the same year with Terrific, another super-hero weekly re-presenting Avengers, Dr. Strange, Sub-Mariner and Giant Man & the Wasp, cut & pasted (literally) into the UK configuration (Hey, US punters – variant editions!) We’re chuffed to welcome back substantial – though, alas, not complete – runs of both series, from the premier issues of each onwards. Consult our catalogue for grades and prices.
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: The definitive Boys’ Adventure title of the later 20th Century, 2000 AD captured the hearts and minds of a generation, and we are delighted to have an unbroken run of the first 100 Progs back in stock, commencing with 1977’s premier issue and the debut of the series’ breakout character, Judge Dredd, in #2! Other highlights of the run include the debut of Tharg’s Future Shocks and Robo-Hunter, the first 2000 AD and Star-Lord amalgam, which brought long-running series Strontium Dog and Ro-Busters to the title, and the notorious – and banned for decades – ‘Burger Wars’ and ‘Jolly Green Giant’ issues! All this plus covers and interior art by Brian Bolland, Kevin O’Neill and Dave Gibbons, at the commencement of their careers! Issue #1 is FA/GD £50, sound, but with creasing and age-related discolouration; #2, the Judge Dredd debut, is an attractive VG/FN at £175 and #3, VG/FN with the original free gift – Red Alert Survival Wallet – at £100. Consult our catalogue listing for full details on all the others. SORRY, #2 HAS NOW SOLD
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: From the year of its launch, 1950, we’re proud to present most of the first year of the iconic Eagle (from #4 upwards with a few gaps), in quite the nicest condition we’ve seen on these in our 25 years of trading. Starring the famous Dan Dare up against the Mekon (in later issues), these fresh copies look like they were printed yesterday rather than 68 years ago. Clean, unfolded copies with little signs of age (a few have newsagent’s names in pencil neatly in the left cover margin), we seriously doubt you’ll ever find better copies. The average grade we’ve assigned is FN/VF, with many reaching the exalted VF grade that we almost never apply to comics printed on this quality of paper. Probably a once in a lifetime opportunity to augment or start your Eagle collection with the very best quality.
*TV & Film Related Comics: Ever mindful of the marketplace, we always do our best to keep an eye on values of stock in our inventory, and from time to time this will result in price reductions on some titles. Such is the case with Amalgamated’s ‘Fun’ trilogy: Film, Radio & TV. These series ran from the 1920s to the 1960s (Radio & TV starting later), and had their emphasis on celebrities of the time in comic adventures (although many non-humour adventure strips often featured as well). Our stocks extend from 1946-1960 and you’ll now find all of them reduced to half price (a small number a little more, a small number a little less). NB Radio Fun featured Superman reprints in the late 1950s/early 1960s. Absolute bargains can now be had for those who are quick off the mark — reduced price listings are now shown in our catalogue.
*Girls’ Comics: A brace of vintage June & School Friend (to give the comic her full title of the time) from 1968, both in Fine condition. In a two-part gift series, the issues dated 27th January and 3rd February of that year featured the free gift “Happy Fortunes Game” – cunningly designed with a big picture on the back so that when you cut up the card to play the game, you could use it as a jigsaw afterwards! (Not a very complicated one, admittedly…) Plus, all the usual favourite features such as “Lucky’s Living Doll”, “Bessie Bunter”, “The Sindy Set”, “Vanessa From Venus”, “Fourth Form Wonder” and more. June didn’t offer free gifts as often as her sister papers, and these card sheets are VF, uncut in superior condition. Both issues FN, at £25 each. SORRY, THESE HAVE NOW SOLD
[Previously listed on 24th March, now relisted due to defaulting would-be purchaser]
Another batch of vintage goodies at a rock bottom price! Between 1909 and 1953, we have 12 comics of humour and adventure in a mixture of grades, featuring the following titles:
Boys’ Herald (1909), Larks (1929), Tip Top (1953), Wild West Weekly (1938) and 8 issues of Wonder from 1947-1952. On offer for just £10. These fit into a medium envelope weighing less than half a kilo. UK postage if required would be an extra £5.50.
On a regular cycle, we sweep through our entire stock to delete sold items and keep our listing as up to date as possible. We’ve just finished deleting sold items from the following files in our American section:
and in our British section:
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics (W – Z)
As of the time of writing, these categories are bang up to date, with every item listed available.
*Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror: It’s a kurious koincidence that so many fantasy heroes have names beginning with K or a hard C. In this update alone we’ve got Kandar (Kenneth Bulmer), Carson and Carter (both Edgar Rice Burroughs), Kothar and Kyrik (both Gardner F Fox). And it’s not just heroes – Burroughs’ The Moon Men has Kalkars as villains while Jack Vance’s The Blue World has King Kragen as the featured baddie. Heroically bucking the trend are Thundar, Man Of Two Worlds (John Bloodstone) and the Goddess Of Ganymede (Michael D Resnick), while the editor of an anthology, Swordsmen And Supermen opted to remain anonymous despite featuring Cap’n Kidd in one story. Not kontent (oh, leave off! ed) with focusing mainly on K, many of these books have great cover artists, including Jeff Jones (Kandar, Kothar Of The Magic Sword and The Goddess Of Ganymede), Ken Barr (Kyrik Fights The Demon World), Romas (The Amazons Of Somelon, Raymond Kaminski) and Virgil Finlay (Swordsmen And Supermen).
For our next window display, the cunning Dr. Evilla has come up with ‘The Seven Pillars of Comics’, seven columns each festooned with a distinct theme showcasing the variety of genres and themes represented by our medium. Visitors to our shop may wish to entertain themselves by trying to work out the theme of each pillar; online viewers will have to content themselves with the overall visual effect as shown here.
A couple of years or so ago we had in a very high grade complete Silver Age run of Thor from Journey Into Mystery #83 upwards. Most of these, including the first appearance in JIM #83 are now long sold, but we’d like to draw your attention to the few that are left. Left: JIM #88 VF+ £625; Right: #92 VF+ £350, #93 VF/NM £540; Left to right below: #95 VF+ £400, #97 VF+ £390, #99 VF/NM £380, #100 VF+ £265, #109 VF/NM £485. Plus there are a handful of other early issues at better than VF as well. Thor fans (and we know there are huge amounts of you out there) may never get another chance to own such lovely, superior copies.
*DC: Following his appearances in the tryout title Showcase, Barry Allen, the Flash, was awarded his own series, the first issue of which was dated March 1959. However, due to the vagaries of newsstand distribution (the only circulation for comics at that time), it was numbered not #1, but #105, continuing the number from the defunct Flash Comics anthology from a decade earlier! The rationale was that newsvendors, seeing a number ‘1’ on the cover, would assume there was no demand because it was ‘new’, and would frequently return bundles of first issues back to the warehouse without attempting to sell them! This, despite the numbering, is the first issue of Barry Allen’s title, and features the very first appearance of the Mirror Master, a long-standing nemesis who was to become a major player in the Flash’s Rogue’s Gallery. This is a FA copy. The spine is brittle, resulting in most interior pages being separated or loose. The cover is detached, and there is a lower cover spine split, as well as a small discolouration in the region of what we shall euphemistically refer to as Barry’s ‘lower torso’. Nevertheless, this is, at £300, an affordable copy of the premier issue of one of the Silver Age’s iconic figures. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*DC: In 1960, DC assembled its all-star team, a revival of the Golden Age Justice Society; the Justice League of America has been consistently one of DC’s strongest sellers, and never out of publication. We are delighted to welcome a massive update of the first series of this classic title, issue numbers ranging from #6 to #200, with highlights including many cross-overs with the legendary Justice Society, and special issues where new members are admitted to the team (Phantom Stranger, Elongated Man, Red Tornado, Zatanna and Firestorm in this sequence). This update of around 150 new entries skews heavily towards the #90 + range, many of which, owing to the spotty state of distribution in the 1970s and 1980s, are now hard to find in the UK. Condition tends to average VG.
*DC: From time to time we like to spotlight additions to our copious downstairs stock of modern comics – generally too recent to individually list. One such recent addition is the first 31 issues (and first Annual) of Deathstroke the Terminator, the anti-hero who span out of the 1980s phenomenally successful New Teen Titans series. Now a major component of the DC TV Universe, in ‘Arrow’ and elsewhere, Deathstroke (having dropped the ‘Terminator’ sobriquet following Arnold Schwarzenegger’s people saying ‘Oi!’) has had several subsequent series, but this was his first solo flight, scripted by his co-creator Marv Wolfman.
*Marvel: In 1964, Peter Parker’s arachnid alter-ego was rewarded with his own Annual, and a thing of beauty it was; an all-new Lee & Ditko extravaganza, with a 41-page feature length lead story introducing the Sinister Six, an alliance of Spidey’s deadliest enemies; the Sandman, Mysterio, Electro, the Vulture, Doctor Octopus and Kraven the Hunter. As if that wasn’t enough, this massive tome also featured a plethora of pin-ups, a 9-page “Secrets of Spider-Man” feature, and the startling secrets of “How Stan Lee and Steve Ditko Create Spider-Man” – the latter presented with tongue firmly in cheek. Not a single reprint in the issue, folks! Ditko’s art is at its finest here, as he breaks free of the constraints of the standard comic format to indulge in full-page panels and epic action galore. This is a VG+ cents copy of this highly-sought item, on sale at £375. There is a 1″ tape to the lower spine, and a crease on the back cover, but these minor flaws in no way impinge upon the story, and merely prevent this highly attractive copy from being a still higher grade.
*Marvel: The Canadian super-hero who would become the breakout star of the ‘New’ X-Men and redefine the Marvel Universe made an inauspicious debut in three issues of the Hulk. This is the final one, #182, with a cameo appearance by Logan, bidding the Hulk a grudging farewell as our Jade Giant faced the threat of Hammer & Anvil! This historic early appearance is highly sought-after, being ND in the UK, and this copy is a respectable VG+, with moderate corner and edge wear but decent interiors and unimpeded cover scene, on sale at £45. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: A chunky run through the rump end of the Marvel alphabet, with new additions for the Thing, Thor (lots of these from #181-225, including the first Firelord in #225 VF £35), Wolverine (1988 series, including classic grey Hulk cover #8 NM £28, Sabretooth battle #10 FN+ £10) and X-Men, including some reprint issues between #80 and #87, a handful of issues from #160 to #219 (#201 1st Cable as baby VF/NM £20.25) and a batch of annuals from #5 to #11.
*Archie: While Archie Comics are of course best known for their plethora of teen-comedy titles focused on their titular star, the publishers also have a stable of super-heroes whose history dates back as far as 1940. In the late Fifties, the company made their first serious attempt at a revival (the original runs having petered out more than a decade previously) with creations from the legendary Joe Simon and Jack Kirby. The Adventures of the Fly was once such, initially reminiscent of the original Captain Marvel (plucky orphan gains magical artefact enabling him to become a super-adult), but after the first few issues Simon & Kirby jumped ship, and Thomas Troy was retooled into an adult attorney, rapidly gaining both a distaff counterpart and romantic interest in Fly-Girl and a mystical enemy in the dishy but deadly Cat Girl. Illustrated at first by John Giunta then John Rosenberger, his adventures became engagingly reminiscent of the Silver Age Superman, with the occasional guest-shot by former Golden Age returnees the Black Hood and the Comet. Cancelled with issue #30, the series returned with #31 as Fly-Man, and switched from a competent and entertaining swipe of the Superman franchise to a legendarily clanking, tone-deaf and inept impersonation of the Marvel style, universally derided yet admired as some of the most amusingly bad comics ever made. Buy the first series, and be charmed and gently entertained; buy the second, and listen to the sound of your brains dribbling out of your ears. You have been warned… Illustrated is Simon & Kirby’s issue #2 GD+ £25. A completely updated list of our Fly/Fly-Man stock may be found in our catalogue.
*Miscellaneous 1960 Onwards: Although a bit ‘modern’ by our usual measure, the phenomenal multi-media success of the Walking Dead cannot be denied, as the hit TV show has shambled into its eighth series (or ‘season’, as our cousins in the New World term it), and the comic book adventures of Rick Grimes and his post-apocalyptic posse continue unabated. We have a selection of more recent issues in to augment our early inventory, issue numbers ranging from #136 to #176, with the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund’s 2012 Liberty Annual – featuring a non-reprint Walking Dead story – as a ‘chaser’.
*Alan Class Reprints: Another hidden gem from the Alan Class series of reprints is issue #35 of Suspense, which features, in the back of the book, “The Stone Men From Saturn” by Lee and Kirby, as it appeared in Journey Into Mystery #83! The first appearance of Thor, God of Thunder, one of the pivotal characters in the Marvel Universe, this has gone largely unnoticed because the publisher didn’t use the original cover, and went instead with “The Blotting Threat”. Oh, well. Although the Alan Class publications were not dated (and Alan’s own memory is imprecise), we believe this may be the first ever reprinting of this origin story! This is a FN+ copy with only minor spine roll (largely attributable, we think, to the glue in the spine contracting over the decades), but lovely bright interior pages and tight corners. FN+, on sale at £35. You’ll find this in our regular Alan Class Reprints listings. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel UK: In the latter days of Marvel’s UK operations, they had pretty much strip-mined their longer-running series to reprint, but still needed new titles to be launched to stimulate sales. This resulted in some… eclectic combinations of characters, one of the most esoteric (or ‘desperate’, your mileage may vary) arose in Forces In Combat in 1980. Cut and pasted into three or four-page instalments, the bewildered readership was treated to, in rapid succession, Sgt. Fury, Rom Space Knight, Rawhide Kid, Machine Man, Kull the Conqueror, and Master of Kung Fu, a smorgasbord of series originally published in three separate decades, all linked ostensibly by the ‘Combat’ theme. With the free gift stickers of military vehicles, it’s as if they planned a war comic, but suddenly realised they didn’t have enough strips to fill it! Most inexplicable, though certainly not unwelcome, was the colour centre feature of ‘Wulf the Briton’ by Ron Embleton, originally presented in ‘TV Express’ the better part of thirty years previously. This cornucopia of curiosities can be yours: the first three issues (#1 VG, #2 FN, #3 FN), with original Free Gifts (#1 FN, #2VF, #3 VF) at £15 each. SORRY, THESE HAVE NOW SOLD
*Boys’ Adeventure & War Picture Libraries: Around 100 Picture Libraries new to our inventory, including popular and long-running series such as War (from #13), Lion (from #40), Valiant (from #46), and Thriller (from #86), together with short-run and relatively obscure titles including Heroic Adventure, and the Secret Agent and Spy 13 Holiday/Summer Specials!
*TV & Film Related Comics: Continuing our massive restock of the classic Gerry Anderson-based weekly, TV Century 21, we move to its second year of publication, 1966 – or ‘2066’, as they cover-billed it – where Thunderbirds reigned supreme! Anderson’s greatest commercial TV show, ‘Thunderbirds’ was enhanced by the superlative artwork of Frank Bellamy in the lavish full-colour centrespread strip, and the lads of International Rescue dominated this year’s covers, particularly as they moved towards the release of the ‘Thunderbirds’ feature film. This is a substantial though not complete run, commencing with #54 and ending with #102, mostly in affordable mid grades, and with many duplicated copies to provide an option for different tastes and budgets. Illustrated is #77 FN at £25; all others may be reviewed in our online catalogue.
*Girls’ Comics: The second and (for now) final part of our huge Bunty update, with a big chunk of 1966 and most of 1967 and 1968 added to our listings (previously we had virtually nothing from these 3 years). Enjoy with us the shenanigans of Bunty, the Four Marys and co in the longest-running and most famous Girls’ comic of them all.
On a regular cycle, we sweep through our entire stock to delete sold items and keep our listing as up to date as possible. We’ve just finished deleting sold items from the following files in our American section:
*Teen Humour/Funny Girls
and in our American/British section:
and in our British section:
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics (V)
As of the time of writing, these categories are bang up to date, with every item listed available.
This Easter, we’re following our normal pattern: we’ll be open normal hours on Good Friday and Easter Saturday, and closed on Easter Sunday & Monday.
*DC: Following the success of DC’s revivals of the Flash and Green Lantern, another Golden Age hero was reinvented in Showcase #34 (October 1961). Whereas the Golden Age Atom was decidedly B-List – just a short guy who overcompensated by punching people a lot – the Silver Age Atom was given a sci-fi spin. Writer Gardner Fox created Ray Palmer, who upon discovering white dwarf matter, makes a suit out of it which enables him to control his size and density, shrinking as far as subatomic level (though his usual ‘fighting height’ was around 6″), while retaining his full-grown strength. It was a nonsensical concept, but Fox’s imagination and creativity – not to mention the glorious artwork of Gil Kane and Murphy Anderson – sold it to readers, and the ‘Tiny Titan’ gained his own series in short order, joining the Justice League of America soon after and becoming a mainstay of the DCU to this very day, where he helms the ‘Legends of Tomorrow’ TV series. This copy of the Atom’s premier appearance is a superior FN- cents copy with no UK price stamp or overprint, firm staples, deep cover colour with one short, light diagonal crease mid-cover edge. Flexible off-white interior pages. While many dealers would grade this even higher, we have marked it down slightly because of a minor pen mark on the bottle of our hero’s opponent on the front cover, which may be seen in the illustration. Nonetheless, a superior copy of a key issue, on sale at £300. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
DC: We conclude this round of our Batmania updates with a bumper selection from Batman, Batman Family, Brave & Bold & Detective Comics. Batman issues run from #183 (2nd Poison Ivy FN £34 pictured) up to #423, taking in Catwoman, Joker, Penguin and Two-Face appearances, issues with Neal Adams art and many 100 page issues. Batman Family is represented by #1. Brave & Bold runs from #74 to #117, including Neal Adams Deadman team-ups, a Joker cover story (#111) and again many 100 page issues. A couple of low grade 1950s Detectives (#204 & #206) are supplemented by many issues from #402 to #445, once again including Neal Adams art (e.g. #408 FN+ £29 pictured) and even more 100 page issues, as well as the first modern age Manhunter by Walt Simonson in #437. Never fear, the streets of Putney will soon be safe once again when the Caped Crusader returns to our updates!