*Marvel: Following his tryouts in Marvel Super-Heroes #12 & #13, Mar-Vell, the Kree warrior sent to conquer Earth from within, got his own series in Marvel’s 1968 expansion year, chock-a-block with intrigue as his superior officers schemed to overcome the planet, and Captain Marvel played a double game. Overtly a good soldier complying with his superior officers, he secretly strove to thwart their agenda, as he came to sympathise more with Earthlings, primarily in the form of Carol Danvers, the security agent who would, decades down the line, take over the role of Captain Marvel herself. This copy of Captain Marvel #1 is a FN p copy, beautiful unmarred purple cover background, high gloss, only a tiny ‘bump’ on the lower left corner bringing its overall grade slightly down. On sale at £40. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Time to top up our Marvel boxes in earnest, since you’ve been buying so much they’re getting increasingly floppy! Marvel titles added this time include Atonishing Tales (Ka-Zar, IT & Deathlok), Avengers (between #25 & #165 plus Annuals #1-3), Daredevil (from #2), Dr. Strange (1st series) & Fantastic Four (dozens of issues between #57 & #288 plus Giant-Size #2). Make Yours Marvel!
*Teen Humour/Funny Girls: No, it’s not the opening line to a risqué story, but the latest parade of the changing role of the teenager in popular fiction. We open with The Farmer’s Daughter from Stanhall, a 1954 publication relying on knowledge of the stock figure from endless filthy jokes; this ‘bigfoot’ comedy #1 is a somewhat bowdlerised version. Groovy, from 1968, was Marvel’s short-lived attempt to muscle in on the gag-mag market, with a festoon of one-panel jokes or short strips. DC’s long-running Archie-alike Binky (Leave It To…) has additions from the very end of its run and My Little Margie, Charlton’s adaptation of a once-popular, now-forgotten TV show, has new listings for the parent title plus the first issue of spin-off My Little Margie’s Boyfriends. We close with the first issue of Winnie Winkle from Dell. Originally subtitled ‘The Breadwinner’, this 1948 issue collects the popular newspaper strip about a young woman earning her own living, but by this time it had reverted to standard romantic comedy tropes. A mixed bag of adolescence from four decades.
*Vintage UK/Australian Reprints of US Material: Among the multitude of 1950s UK publishers who made a career of repackaging US material during those non-distributed days, one of the most prominent was Len Miller, whose enterprise produced myriad faux-US format titles, reprinting American strips and sometimes (most famously with Marvelman) creating entirely new stories for the comics-starved UK market. His big four titles, however, were the horror/sci-fi anthologies Mystic, Spellbound, Voodoo and Zombie, with a heady and seemingly random selection of Pre-Code horror, Marvel ‘Big Panty Monster’ tales, crime stories, and surprisingly frequently, early reprints from Marvel Comics, before Mr. Miller’s demise in the early 1960s left the Marvel licence to be taken up by Alan Class. We have a large number of Mystic and Spellbound newly stocked, ranging from #13 to #66 of Mystic and Spellbound from #7 to #64, plus a smaller selection of Voodoo and Zombie. Several of these feature early Marvel super-hero stories including Dr. Strange, the Human Torch, the Fantastic Four, Iron Man, Thor and Ant-Man, and there are occasional other surprises: the 1950s revivals of Captain America, the original Human Torch and the Sub-Mariner from Young Men #24, and an entire issue of Quality’s Blackhawk (in which our team of international aviators take on the Black Widow!) Another talking point is the reprinting of ‘Stretching Things’, the first published story by a young promising talent named Steve Ditko. Illustrated are Mystic #45 FN £25 and #48 FN £25; Spellbound #43 GD £15 and #45 FN £25; Voodoo #9 FN £15 and Zombie #9 £20; full range of issues available, with grades and prices, is shown in our website catalogue. .
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: At the beginning of 1977, around about the onset of punk music, a comic was launched that captured the zeitgeist of the times, darker, more anarchic and anti-establishment than anything that had come before it in the British comics world. The first issue dated 26th February 1977 launched the careers of long-running series ‘Flesh’, ‘MACH 1’, ‘Invasion’, ‘Harlem Heroes’ and a revised version of the classic Eagle hero ‘Dan Dare’. This copy is VG, a tight, flat copy with good staples and off-white pages; just faint discolouration in one small location where the free gift was originally taped into the cover. The free gift – Space Spinner – is also present, in FN condition, clean and unmarked. The debut issue of the series which redefined British comics complete with Free Gift is on sale at £275.
*TV & Film Related Comics: A plethora of new issues of Look-In, the ‘Junior TV Times’ best remembered now for its comic strip adaptations of TV series of the day, frequently drawn by the cream of British comic artists. Examples include Mike Noble on ‘Timeslip’ and ‘Follyfoot’, John M. Burns on ‘Tomorrow People’, John Bolton on ‘Bionic Woman’, and many more. This 150+ issue update includes many from 1971, the first year of publication, a dash of 1972, and substantial portions of 1973, 1974 and 1976 (years either minimally or non-represented before), and plenty of gaps filled in our 1977 listings. Two free gift issues from 1971 are included, as well as a scattering of Christmas issues!
*Humour Comics: In 1973, the then-indefatigable Whizzer & Chips gobbled up another of its fallen brethren, Knockout Mk II, in the ‘hatch, match & despatch’ stratagem beloved of UK comics. This issue, though, in addition to the traditional transfer of the fallen weekly’s most popular series to their new home, featured a selection of two free gifts, one inspired by each ‘half’ of Whizzer & Chips. This copy of the merger issue, dated 30th June 1973, offers ‘Shiner’s Holiday Humour’; folks seeking the alternate gift, ‘Sid’s School Smiles’ will sadly have to wait a while yet. Comic in VG and Free Gift in FN on sale for £20. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Girls’ Comics: June, the grand old dame of Fleetway/IPC’s girls’ line, hung up her hockey sticks in 1974, but in the British Tradition, both Annuals and Summer Specials continued to be issued for years after the weekly’s demise. 1980, however, saw the very last June and School Friend Summer Special, and that issue is newly arrived in our inventory. Oddly, it’s got few of the series associated with June weekly – Bessie Bunter and Lucky’s Living Doll show their faces, but the rest of the comics content is stand-alone mystery and adventure stories. Nevertheless, this last J & SF Special is also the rarest, so this attractive VG copy, with moderate spine wear, is on sale at £40. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
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 British section:
As of the time of writing, this category is bang up to date, with every item listed available.
Our spotlight on previously listed stock this week falls on the 225th issue of the comic that gave DC its name, which featured the debut of J’onn J’onzz, the Martian Manhunter. Opinions differ on which comic started the Silver Age; many consider that Showcase #4 with the debut of the Barry Allen Flash was the first Silver Age comic, but Detective Comics #225 from November 1955 preceded that by almost a year and featured a brand new super-hero rather than a re-invented one, so you pays yer money and you takes yer choice. Anyway, our issue of Detective #225 is a bright attractive copy, with nice page quality, graded at FN-; the defects comprise a small back cover tear (about 1″), minor spine wear and a very minor crease at the bottom right corner of the cover. Given the Martian Manhunter’s prominence in the DC Media Universe – currently a major player in the hit Supergirl TV series – recorded sales on this issue are spiralling, but we’re holding firm at the price we originally listed it at of £2,500, offering a solid investment opportunity. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Clearance Corner: A huge bargain bundle this week as we clear our shelves of our stock of My Guy from 1992-1995. 130 issues on offer in one big box ranging from #731-873 (with a few gaps). By the 1990s My Guy, the glossy pop comic weekly, had forgone its comics strip content for photo-love stories so popular at the time, together with pop photos, gossip and everything essential to its teenage girl target audience. So, if this sounds like your sort of thing, make the most of this one-off opportunity for a huge wodge of pop hunkdom and get your order in quick for this rock bottom priced bargain. 130 issues for just £25. UK postage (Parcelforce 48 small parcel at 9 kg) would be an extra £17.50. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*As you may realise, the purpose of our Clearance Corner lots are to clear space in our shop by discontinuing titles we’re no longer carrying to make way for new and incoming stuff. As such, they will only be offered for a short time. This Clearance Corner lot, listed on 20th April, has not been snapped up and is nearing the end of its time with us. If not purchased by the weekend, we will have to dispose of it. Here are the details from our original listing:
“Artist and writer Jack Katz, despite a career dating back to the 1940s, felt unfulfilled by the art form to which he had devoted his professional life, and in 1974, he took inspiration from the underground commix movement, and the move towards black & white magazine comics by publishers such as Warren and Skywald, to create his own graphic opus, the First Kingdom, in which he saw the potential to create his own story without editorial interference. The First Kingdom is a 24-issue, 768-page series which took Katz twelve years to complete, from 1974 to 1986. The twice-yearly publication and adult content meant that First Kingdom never found broad commercial success, but this story of a post-nuclear civilization rebuilding itself with help from gods and aliens, inhabited by a plethora of characters, is generally regarded as a forerunner of today’s independent comics movement. We have 22 of the 24-issue run, in VF average condition (some second printings) lacking only issues 14 and 21 for the complete set. Average retail was £3-£4 per issue, 22 issues now available for £12. Weight 1.5 kg. UK postage, if required, will be an additional £3.50 as a small parcel.” SORRY, THIS LOT HAS NOW SOLD
*DC: We conclude our current short Batmania event with three sought-after appearances of Harley Quinn, the Joker’s former lover who became the breakout DC character of the late 20th Century! We open with 1994’s Batman Adventures: Mad Love, the Paul Dini/Bruce Timm one-off which was Harley’s second comic-book appearance, following her debut in Batman Adventures #12. Mad Love was a huge hit, defining the Harley/Joker relationship, and consolidating her stardom. In 1997, another one-shot, Batman & Superman Adventures: World’s Finest, by Dini and Staton, combined the two popular DC TV Animated franchises, as Supes & Bats joined forces against the Joker and Lex Luthor, with both villains’ henchwomen (Mercy Graves and Harley Quinn) in close attendance. Finally, Batman ’66, the recent series inspired by the classic Batman TV show, scored a triumph when its 25th issue introduced a retro version of Dr. Harleen Quinzel as the Harlequin! Batman Adventures: Mad Love is NM p (1st printing) at £75; Batman & Superman Adventures: Worlds’ Finest is VF £12 and Batman ’66 #25 is VF £20. SORRY, MAD LOVE HAS NOW SOLD
*DC: In the 1970s, both major companies experimented with tabloid formats, and DC’s was the Limited Collectors’ Edition, selected reprints in oversized format, which proved popular enough to spread to subsidiary series – Famous First Editions (reprinting historic issues in full), All-New Collector’s Edition (with, as the name implies, non-reprint stories of major characters). We have selections from all these gargantuan behemoths new in. Their unusual dimensions meant that they were not well-distributed by newsvendors in the States, nor have they generally fared well in long-term storage. Added to that the fact that they barely saw any distribution in the UK at all, and their rarity will be appreciated. We have one Famous First Edition new in, C-61, reprinting Superman #1 from 1938, FN p £10. From the main Limited Collectors’ Edition series, we have C-31 GD £5, reprinting a selection of vintage Superman stories, GD £5; C-37, a Batman All-Villain Special, (pictured) with an all-star roster – Catwoman, Joker, Two-Face and the Penguin; this is a beautiful VF at £25; C-47, Superman Salutes the Bicentennial, is FN/VF £10 and the star of the update is one of thee most sought-after issues – and by a long way the most contentious – All-New Collectors’ Edition C-55, starring Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes, at that time one of DC’s strongest-selling series. Featuring the wedding of two founding Legionnaires, Saturn Girl and Lightning Lad, this was completely undistributed in the UK and not commonplace in the US, with the result that rabid completist Legion fans (yes, like us!) had to have it, and sought it out regardless of expense or effort, despite the fact that, frankly, the expanded page size did the Grell & Colletta ‘artwork’ no favours whatsoever. Didn’t matter to the diehard Legion folks – and still doesn’t, decades later, as every copy to come through our hands has vanished as if abducted by the Time Trapper! This copy (pictured) is an outstanding VF/NM at £50. SORRY, PICTURED ITEMS NOW SOLD
*DC: A chunky run through the DCU this week for titles beginning with M-S, as follows: Metal Men, Metamorpho (inc #1), Mystery In Space (#87 with start of Hawkman series), Plastic Man, Rip Hunter Time Master (from #2), Sea Devils, Secret Six (from #1), Shazam (from #1) & Strange Adventures. A mixed, quirky yet somehow compelling bag!
*DC/Marvel: In 2003, DC and Marvel collaborated to bring together their premier super-teams; in a four-part prestige Format crossover, the Justice League of America and the Avengers clashed, then cooperated, in an epic reality-twisting battle which encompassed every member of both teams at some point, as well as myriad friends, foes and forces of the universe, as Krona and the Grandmaster manipulate two universes to their own ends. The following year, this slipcased hardcover edition was released, featuring not only an expanded version of the full story, but also the 21 pencilled pages of the original aborted Avengers/JLA crossover from 1983, and a plethora of other features! George Perez’s stunning art is even better at the super-sized 9″ x 12″ dimensions, for a truly immersive reading experience! This is a NM copy of a book long out of print, with slipcase, dustjackets and volumes virtually as new, with only the most minuscule ‘shelf wear’ from long term storage. On sale at £125.
*Marvel: One of the more tragic entries in Spider-Man’s Rogue’s Gallery is the Lizard, a.k.a. Dr. Curt Connors, a dedicated scientist and devoted husband and father whose research into a regenerative serum, to help himself and other amputees, went horribly wrong when the lizard-like properties of tissue regeneration ran rampant, turning him into a humanoid reptile. The Lizard debuted in the sixth issue of Spider-Man, and we are delighted to have in stock this VG- p copy, which would grade higher but for the placement of a Book Centre Stamp over the Lizard’s tale, as may be seen in the illustration. Nevertheless, a clean, tight copy of one of the Wall-Crawler’s earliest adventures, which as getting harder and harder to come by as the years roll on. Amazing Spider-Man #6 VG- p £225. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Following his debut in Fantastic Four #48, Norrin Radd, Herald of Galactus, gained popularity as a recurring guest-star, and his popularity was recognized when Marvel launched his own series in the double-sized format in 1968. This premier issue featured, for the first time, John Buscema’s illustrations on the Surfer, a body of work generally acknowledged to be among his finest, and presented also for the first time a 38-page account of the Surfer’s origins, plus, in the back, a 13-page tale of the Watcher, detailing for the first time reasons behind the Watcher’s oath of non-interference. Uncommon in any grade, this newest copy of Surfer #1 is a superior VG+ pence copy, light creasing at spine and far cover edge, but unimpaired cover scene with great eye appeal. On sale at £125. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Three years after the debut of the Black Panther, 1969’s Captain America #117 saw the debut of Marvel’s second African-American super-hero. Having switched bodies involuntarily with the Red Skull, Cap ends up on Exile Island, being hunted by the Skull’s henchmen. Rescued by a young man named Sam Wilson and his pet hawk, Redwing, Cap persuades Sam of the importance of a costumed identity as a symbol, and Sam adopts the guise of the Falcon, first to inspire revolution in the native population of Exile Island, and later as an aspirational figure in Sam’s Harlem home. The Falcon and his avian sidekick Redwing would become a mainstay of Cap’s series, and of course figure largely in the current Marvel Cinematic Universe, so this first appearance, long undervalued, is now climbing. This is an attractive VG, cents copy with no pence price or overstamp, clean and tight with only minimal wear at the cover edge, on sale at £75. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Okay, of all the oddities we’ve offered you over the years, this is one of the oddest: most of Avengers #1, the Lee/Kirby epic which united Marvel’s Mightiest for the first time! This is the real deal, not a reprint or facsimile, but the front and back covers and the front and back interior pages are missing. This means that in addition to being coverless, the splash page and page two of the story are absent, and, while the rest of the story is present, the final two interior ad pages are also gone. Coverless copies of Avengers #1 have been recorded as selling in the hundreds of pounds – hard to believe, but there we are – so we’re asking £100 for this incomplete copy, which, to employ a euphemism commonplace to our rival dealers, is “ripe for restoration”, ahem ahem. Image shows the final page of the story where our heroes ‘get it together’. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: When the distribution restrictions eased, and Marvel’s split books fissioned into solo series, Jim Steranko really cut loose with his kinetic, cinematic style, heavily influenced by the Op Art movement of the era, but founded on meticulous narrative principles, producing some epic work in his sadly short comic book career. Nowhere was this more evident than in his work on Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD, where he combined the secret agent tropes popular in the day with his own visual flair, producing iconic works that still resonate decades later. We have the first fifteen issues of this series, (sans #13) in stock; Steranko sadly didn’t do all of the early issues – his attention to detail was deadline-unfriendly – but he was ably substituted by Frank Springer, an under-estimated artist who has seldom been better than when he was emulating Steranko’s approach. Issue #1 is VG+ p £25; details of the remainder may be found in our online catalogue. SORRY, ISSUES #1-3 NOW SOLD
*Horror/Mystery 1960-1980s: Following brisk sales, we’re welcoming more of all that creep and crawl into our crypts, and apart from a sprinkling of Ripley’s Believe It Or Not from Gold Key, we’re mostly about the Marvel this week: early and non-distributed first series Man-Things (beginning with #3, the first Foolkiller) and his Giant-Size spin-off, the stylish anthology Chamber of Darkness (from #1), second series Journey Into Mystery (from #2), Weird Wonder Tales, Giant-Size Werewolf (for when a normal werewolf just isn’t enough), and rounding up with a second outing for some classic Lee/Kirby Big-Panty-Monsters in Where Monsters Dwell!
*Western: A selection of western adventures from four decades and five publishers: the 1940s brings us Timely’s Tex Taylor #8, and the 1950s offers two Magazine Enterprises titles – Bobby Benson’s B-Bar-B Riders #13, with a splendid Frazetta cover, and Durango Kid #8, with interior Frazetta art – and two issues of Prize Comics Western, with John Severin art among others. The 1960s shows up with two Marvel titles – a dash of Rawhide Kid, and a couple of the giant-sized Mighty Marvel Western issues and the 1970s is heralded with Weird Western Tales #18, the first all-Jonah Hex issue.
*Marvel UK: From Marvel UK’s ‘Second Wave’, this 1980 anthology launch boasted a stronger and less random line-up than most (Thor, Doctor Strange and the Fantastic Four) and the debut issue boasted an early pro cover by Alan Davis. The first three issues are new in stock, each in FN with the Free Gift stickers (of the FF, Thor and Doctor Strange respectively) in VF. Issue #1 is £15; issues #2 and #3 are £12 each. Plus, a second #2 in Fine with free gift in FN at £10! SORRY, THESE HAVE NOW SOLD
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: Lion is a popular series in all its iterations, but in the final few years – 1972 to 1974 – it had a top-notch line-up of fantasy and adventure which was, honestly, too good for the general readership. (Is the writer here a prejudiced witness, being a former Lion reader? Perhaps.) With ‘The Spider’, ‘Dr. Mesmer’s Revenge’, ‘Robot Archie’, ‘Spellbinder’, ‘Adam Eterno’, ‘The 10,000 Disasters of Dort’ and okay, if you must, ‘Carson’s Cubs’, it was a cracking read – which leaves scholars baffled as to why it faltered, losing sales and even, in its final year, skipping some weeks. Must have been inter-office politics. Be that as it may; we are delighted to have around twenty new issues in from this period, including the very final issue, in attractive grades, averaging Fine; the last-ever Lion dated 18th May 1974 is FN at £20. The others may be found in our online catalogue.
*Boys’ Adventure & War Picture Libraries: Two popular and scarce Picture Libraries newly stocked, both with supernatural themes: with titles like “Daughter of Darkness”, “Ritual By Moonlight”, “Hell On Earth” and “Doctor Satan”, these done-in-one digests provided furtive chills for readers theoretically too young to get into a horror film in the pre-Internet days! From 1966, Nightmare Suspense Picture Library gains a quartet of issues from #5 (pictured, VG £5) to #15; while 1971’s Pocket Chiller Library gains 34 issues between #1 (pictured, GD £15) through to #74.
*TV & Film Related Comics: After a long run of 242 issues, TV Century 21, the Gerry Anderson-inspired comics showcase, without pausing for breath, reinvented itself as TV 21 & Joe 90, starting with a new #1, and scooping up its fallen stablemate, co-opting the titular speccy hero, ‘Star Trek’, and ‘Land of the Giants’ from Joe 90 weekly and teaming them with the star features ‘Thunderbirds’ and ‘The Saint’ for a refreshed line-up. We have several of the earlier TV 21 & Joe 90 new in, including the first four and then a further half-dozen issues between #9 and #23. Issue #1 (pictured) is GD/VG at £35, and price and grade details of the others, as always, may be found in our online catalogue. SORRY, #1 & #2 NOW SOLD
*TV & Film Related Comics: Released in 1981 – just when the cult TV show was coming to its close, great timing Marvel UK – Blake’s 7 featured photos, articles and features on the plucky revolutionary fighter of the far-flung future and his wacky chums. In addition, there were new comic-strip stories set in the TV universe, pitting our intrepid heroes against the sinister Servalan, whose attitude and dress sense demonstrated that women, too, could aspire to be drag queens! The first five issues are back in stock, in mid to high grades. All come with the original bound-in poster pin-ups, and #1 has the free gift of an Iron-On transfer. #1 (pictured) is FN with VF free gift at £20; details of the rest may be seen in our online catalogue. SORRY, THESE HAVE NOW SOLD
*Clearance Corner: Up for grabs this week is a batch of 18 of those wonderful Marvel Giant squarebound reprint comics from the mid-late 1960s. This lot comprises 6 x Marvel Collectors’ Item Classics (#1, #2, #3, #5, #7 & #20), 7 x Marvel Super-Heroes (#21, #22, #23, #24, #25, #26 & #27) and 5 x Marvel Tales (#4, #5, #6, #8 & #10). Condition averages VG ish. Full of glorious tales from the earliest days of the Marvel Universe, at just £18 (£1 each!), this lot represents tremendous reading value – the FF, Spidey, Ant-Man, Thor, Iron Man, the Hulk, Dr Strange, the X-Men, Daredevil etc — they’re all here! UK postage on this lot if required would be an extra £3.50. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Memorabilia & Esoterica: We’re delighted to have acquired an original Judy Club Badge from 1960. Never given away directly with the comic, this was sent out to members of the Judy Club, who diligently sent in their postal orders. While we don’t know the production run of these items, it’s a fairly safe bet that the number of girls who joined the club, excuse the expression, was only a fraction of the general readership, so these can’t be commonplace. White and blue enamel on metal with a pin back, these are sturdier than the flimsy bits of tin and/or plastic that were the usual materials for later club premiums. In VF condition, this piece of memorabilia is on sale for £25.
Our spotlight on previously listed stock this week falls on a pair of beauties from the notorious American publisher Fox of the 1940s/50s. Most Victor Fox publications were printed on the cheapest paper stock available to him, and were shameless in their exploitation of lurid and scantily clad heroines and femme fatales, plus violence and gore were not underused in these pre-code days. Here, for example, the titular character, Dagar the Desert Hawk, a male desert adventurer, was upstaged on the covers (and mostly on the interiors) by exotic damsels. A Fox book is an experience quite like nothing else — crude and unsophisticated for the most part (Matt Baker’s Phantom Lady aside), but with a certain manic energy and drive. Dagar #16 (the series started at #14) is VG- (small piece of clear tape upper centre cover) at £65; #22 (the penultimate issue) is GD/VG at £50. Both have varying degrees of spine wear, but attractive and unspoilt cover images and reasonable page quality.
As you may realise, the purpose of our Clearance Corner lots are to clear space in our shop by discontinuing titles we’re no longer carrying to make way for new and incoming stuff. As such, they will only be offered for a short time. This Clearance Corner lot, listed on 13th April, has not been snapped up and is nearing the end of its time with us. If not purchased by the weekend, we will have to dispose of it. Here are the details from our original listing:
“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!”
‘BUT,’ I hear the cries of non-footie fans (including Dr Evilla), ‘surely the football season is over!’ They haven’t reckoned with the forthcoming World Cup. Despite her lack of respect for the beautiful game Dr Evilla has been cajoled into producing a window display celebrating the doyen of British football (and comics), Roy Of The Rovers, even going so far as to find the issue where Roy wins the World Cup (in his dreams).
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 British section:
As of the time of writing, this category is bang up to date, with every item listed available.
As usual, we shall be closed on the Bank Holiday Monday 28th May. All email orders submitted before then will be dealt with on Tuesday morning when we re-open, and prioritised in order of receipt.
*DC: After #123 (“Flash of Two Worlds”, as if you need telling), and the premier issue (#105), probably the most in-demand issue of the Silver Age Flash is #139, which featured the first appearance of Professor Zoom, the Reverse-Flash, Barry Allen’s super-swift nemesis from the far-flung future, whose appearances in the popular Flash television series have caused his early appearances to zoom (sorry) upwards in value. We are delighted to welcome the Reverse-Flash back into our inventory – though we anticipate not for long – with this attractive VG p copy of his debut. Clean and sound, with light spine and edge wear, but firm at staples and decent interior, this copy is VG p at £200. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*DC: Star of this week’s Batmania is Batman #169, the second Silver Age appearance of the Penguin, and his first post the launch of Batman’s ‘New Look’. One of the ‘Big Four’ villains featured regularly in the Batman TV show, embodied by Burgess Meredith, the Penguin clicked with the mainstream audience, and thanks to the updated incarnation portrayed by Robin Taylor in ‘Gotham’, he’s more popular than ever! This key appearance of a major villain is a beautiful FN, pence copy, with vivid purple background unfaded and unbroken by the ravages of time – and also one of Carmine Infantino’s most eye-catching designs of the era! On sale at £65. But the Bumbershoot Bandit brought along friends – appearances by the Joker, Clayface, the Scarecrow, Catwoman, and the Getaway Genius (pardon?) festoon this update of around 20 Silver Age issues new in, from #159 (‘Clayface/Joker Feud!’), to #189 (return of the Scarecrow).
*DC: Once universally derided, even on popular TV shows, Aquaman is again being taken seriously following his recent appearance in the Justice League movie, and the imminent Jason Momoa-helmed Aquaman solo flick. We’re chuffed by all this attention, as Aquaman’s Silver Age series was always a quality book, enhanced immeasurably when his shapely interdimensional love-interest Mera swam on the scene, as memorably illustrated by Nick “Master of Curves” Cardy. Ten new issues of Aquaman’s first series added to our catalogue, including the Aquaman/Mera wedding in #18. Full details in the DC category of our catalogue.
*Marvel: This week’s look at Marvel’s debut issues in 1968 features a gamma-infused milestone, with the first issue of the Hulk’s own series, eccentrically numbered #102, as he assumed the numbering of Tales to Astonish, the split-book which had been his home for several years. This was Brucie’s big break, his comeback vehicle after his early-60s 6-issue flop, and the start of the long-running series most associated with him. Mirthful Marie Severin illustrated not only a recap of Bruce Banner’s irradiated origin, but also a new story thread with Jade-Jaws frolicking with some of Thor’s Asgardian chums. (Bonus points for the appearance of guest-villainess the Enchantress (obviously)). This is a gorgeous copy: clean, tight at staples, sharp corners, excellent cover colour and gloss, VF p £140. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: While we yield to no one in our regard for Steve Ditko as the ‘proper’ Spider-Man artist, we have to concede that John Romita did a cracking job when he took over, redefining the character for the Swingin’ Sixties – and Jazzy Johnny’s background as a romance artist certainly didn’t hurt when it came to drawing Peter Parker’s own ‘Betty & Veronica’, Gwen and Mary Jane! Issue #39 marked Romita’s first as illustrator, and he dove right in, making the character his own, and creating a cover scene which is almost as often ‘homaged’ as his famous Spidey #50 cover! #39 and #40 constituted a two-part confrontation with the Green Goblin and firmly established Romita’s tenure on the title. Both parts of this epic are back in stock; #39 is a GD+ cents copy, with minor creasing at lower and upper cover corners not detracting from the impact of the cover scene, on sale at £40. #40 is VG-, also cents with no pence price or overstamp, on sale at £49.
*Marvel: As befits its status as the premier series of the Marvel Universe, the Fantastic Four has launched many secondary careers of the FF’s foes and friends who first appeared as guest-stars, then graduated to their own series. The Silver Surfer, the Inhumans, the Black Panther and many others have debuted this way, and in Fantastic Four #66, we were introduced to a mysterious cocooned figure who emerged the following issue as ‘Him’, a being of almost godlike power. Later, he would be named Warlock and would enjoy a chequered career of critical acclaim, but haphazard commercial success, coming into his own with Jim Starlin’s controversial series of the 1970s. These two issues see the first appearance of the character, though he was not fully revealed until the second half of the two-part story. Issue #66, the prelude as it were, is VG+ p at £32; the ‘big reveal’ comes in #67, a VG+ p copy with a striking white-background cover (only slight right-edge discolouration due to age) spotlighting all of our cavortin’ cast of characters. This debut issue is VG+ p £75. SORRY, THESE HAVE NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Following massive turnover, we have significantly replenished our X-Men stock in the above range, including some duplicate copies in differing grades to give our valued customers a choice of condition and price. Starting with the post-Byrne issues, we whisk through the return of Dave Cockrum, the era of Paul Smith, the debuts on the series of John Romita Jr. and Jim Lee, and occasional guest shots by Barry Windsor-Smith and Art Adams, while our favourite mutants party down with the Brood, the Harriers, the Morlocks, the Badoon and the Warriors of Asgard, among many more! Over 100 issues new in, including Annuals from #3 to #9!
*Marvel: One of Marvel’s most enduring characters, and still tearing up a storm in the Marvel cinematic universe, Thor, God of Thunder, is significantly restocked, with issues commencing from Journey Into Mystery #112 (the scarce early Thor/Hulk clash) through to Thor #173 (the title having become eponymous with #126, but keeping the Journey Into Mystery numbering) and JIM Annual #1, which introduced Marve’s take on Hercules! Highlights along the way include the premier appearances of the Warriors Three, Mangog, and the Destroyer. For grandeur and glory, Lee and Kirby’s Thor remains unmatched.
*Gold Key/Whitman: Gold Key’s Star Trek adaptation was the first translation of the sci-fi cult TV show into comics, and it remains hugely popular. We have added ten new issues to our listings between #25 and the final issue of the series, #61, in very respectable grades, averaging VF. Live Long and Prosper!
*War: The early 1970s were a schizoid time for the DC war line; still popular sellers, but, with the zeitgeist of the American nation still reeling from Vietnam, tales of combat had to be less straightforward and gung-ho than they used to be. The writers and artists rose to the challenge, producing fine and often overlooked work. We have new listings from this period for Our Army At War (starring Sgt. Rock, from #236), Our Fighting Forces (featuring the Losers, from #131), Star Spangled War Stories (home to the Unknown Soldier, from #159), and the war/horror hybrid Weird War Tales, commencing with #5. These are mostly higher-grade additions, averaging Fine+ or better, and featuring the best artists working in the genre – Joe Kubert, of course, but also Russ Heath, Sam Glanzman, John Severin, Alex Toth and relative newbie Neal Adams!
*Vintage Magazine-Sized Comics: Our popular magazine-sized comics section is refreshed this update with additions to several sub-sections. In Marvel, we have new entries for Bizarre Adventures, Marvel Preview – including #2, with the first full Punisher origin and 1st Dominic Fortune! – Marvel Comics Super Special, Spectacular Spider-Man, Unknown Worlds of Science Fiction and one of the rarest Marvel Mags, the one-off 1979 parody Brother Billy, the Pain From Plains! (note we said it was rare; we make no promises about it being any good…) Skywald offers us a top-up of the horror-mood mag Nightmare, issues between #8 and #22, plus the second (and final) issues of motorcyclin’ superhero Hell-Rider, co-starring the bodacious Butterfly, the very first black super-heroine! And we round up with Warren, with new additions to Creepy, Eerie (from #2, the first distributed issue) and the 1970’s ‘sexy sci-fi series, 1984/1994.
*Mad & Other Parody: We refresh our lists of the premier parody magazine with half a dozen of the UK Mad Specials, ranging from the 1970 “Collected Ravings From”, through a selection of numbered Specials (#11, #12, #13 and #15) from the 1970s, and closing out with the 1985 ‘Worst From’ Special (#53). Backing them up, there’s a single vintage issue of Cracked, the shameless Mad-imitator which ran from 1958 to 2007. This is #17, from 1960, and features the artistic talents of John Severin, Jack Davis and Russ Heath, amongst others.
*Alan Class Reprints: Continuing our restock of the Alan Class ‘Big Six’, we turn our attention to two series previously very under-represented in our inventory, Sinister Tales and Suspense. We have around forty new issues listed, between #11 and #212 (Sinister) and #9 to #181 (Suspense), as well as a light sprinkling of Uncanny Tales, plus the one-off Space Adventures Presents Space Trip To The Moon! More on the way as soon as time and space permit, but in the meantime, enjoy the company of the Phantom, Daredevil, Jack Kirby-illustrated ‘Big Panty Monsters’, Doctor Strange, the Fly, Herbie, Steve Ditko-drawn twist-ending tales, the Jaguar, Captain Atom, Silver Surfer, the Mighty Crusaders, and every other feature in the kaleidoscopic world of Alan Class!
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: In 1974, D.C. Thomson launched Warlord, a harder-hitting weekly devoted entirely to war in its various guises; the company had of course always played up WW II and other famous battles in its other adventure weeklies, such as Victor, Hotspur, Hornet et al., but this was the first all-war weekly they had tried, and it caught on big time with the public, running more than a decade for a total of 627 issues, and inspiring competitors IPC/Fleetway to retaliate a year later with Battle. Warlord was fronted by Lord Peter Flint, code-named guess-what, as a WWII spy, and other popular features included Union Jack Jackson and Bomber Braddock. This copy of #1 is a GD, with an upper spine tear being the predominant flaw. The accompanying Free Gift – a ‘For Valour’ Medal holder with shiny paper ‘medals – is Fair, partially completed with 18 out of 24 ‘medals’ stuck in. (obviously the original purchaser missed a week!) It’s not pretty, but it’s complete, it’s the first issue of a long-running series, and it’s very affordable at £15. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: Well, technically, eagles may not twitter, but we’re not too worried about ornithological orthodoxy here. The main thing is to let you know that we’ve added a complete run of the 1967 volume of Eagles, in grades of VG or GD and including the Christmas issue.