*DC: One of the most enduring of Superman’s villains – although mostly, despite his vast power, played for comedy – Bizarro and his wacky chums have entertained generations of readers. But his genesis in 1958 was very different in tone. Created during an experiment, the imperfect double of Superboy, despite his good intentions, was shunned and feared by the people because of his grotesque appearance, his only friend a blind girl who somehow perceived his kindly soul. Strongly, and doubtless intentionally, reminiscent of the classic Frankenstein movies which were hitting big on TV at the time, this tragic story proved such a hit with the readers that Bizarro was re-introduced as a player in the adult Superman Universe. This copy of Superboy #68 is a highly attractive VG, minor spine wear and a tiny piece of tape on the lower right inside cover, but unmarred cover image, vivid colour and sound interiors. A very desirable copy of a key debut; VG at £350. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*DC: This week’s visit to Batmania features the debut of one of his most famous female nemeses. Catwoman having seemingly gone into retirement by 1966 (but not for long!), the Batman franchise was in need of a new femme fatale, and Poison Ivy was brainstormed with the idea of joining the TV show as a recurring villain. Most of the ladies on that series being, shall we say, of a certain age, it was felt someone younger and more vibrant was required! Ivy never made it onto the small screen – at least not in that decade – but she did catch on with the comics audience, and has remained a staple of the Batman Rogue’s Gallery ever since, her profile being considerably upped in recent years by her status as Harley Quinn’s favourite gal-pal. This is a mid-grade, respectable copy of Ivy’s debut, minor cover creasing and wear not significantly breaking colour, and a large biro ‘6’ popping up over Ivy’s shoulder on the cover, but clean, flexible interiors, and – most crucially – the centrefold pin-up, frequently missing from copies of this issue, is firmly in place. Overall, a GD/VG p copy at £85. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*DC: One of the more oddball entries in the DC annals, Showcase #43 began as a projected issue of Classics Illustrated. The story was ultimately rejected by the Classics publishers as ‘too adult’, and its only first printing appeared in the insanely-rare UK Classics Illustrated #158a. This material was re-packaged by DC as issue #43 of its ‘tryout’ series Showcase with a new cover by Bob Brown, but – being released before the film, it was a bit of a flop, and DC lost the license which, decades later, several other publishers took up to good effect. Subsequent popularity of the James Bond character in multiple media has made this issue highly sought-after in retrospect. We have a newly-acquired Showcase #43 in GD p (respectable copy with one small triangular tear at top cover edge) at £50. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*DC: Early Justice League of America issues are dear to our hearts here at 30th Century, and none more so than #7, ‘The Cosmic Fun-House’, wherein several JLAers are transformed into distorted mirror images of themselves. How does this come about? You’ll have to read it to find out, but we suspect this is one of those cases where, as legend has it, editor Julius Schwarz would come up with a cover idea and present it to writer Gardner Fox as a challenge: ‘Write a story to fit that!’ This nice mid-grade pence copy has good cover colour, nice page quality, one small internal page tear and a very small water mark at the 10 cent printed price; VG- at £50.
*Marvel: Iron Man’s very first appearance, in the pages of Tales of Suspense #39, abducted by Reds behind the Bamboo Curtain (it was a different time…) and forced to manufacture advanced weapons to crush capitalism, Tony Stark turned the tables on his captors by devising a cybernetic suit of armour which transformed him into an unstoppable juggernaut of justice – but at the cost of a near-fatal injury to his heart, which required constant contact with his robotic armour to keep beating! Under the artistic talents of (usually) Don Heck (who devoted special attention, bless him, to the many shapely ladies Tony Stark romanced), the sophisticated world of Tony Stark vied with the action-adventure of his Iron Man persona for the readers’ attention. Following the blockbuster success of the Iron Man movie franchise, demand for this issue has never been higher. This is a FA/GD p copy, taped the full length of the spine. Small ‘6’ in magic marker just above issue number. Notable creases at upper and lower cover corners, though these do not impact upon the cover image. Small ‘scuff’ around ‘S’ of title. Upper back cover edge worn with two small tears. Interior pages decent, clean and flexible, staples firm at centre. Generally a presentable, if flawed, copy of the first appearance of one of the central figures in the Marvel Universe. On sale at £1200. Front and back cover scans shown. 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! This issue marked Romita’s first as illustrator, and he dove right in, making the character his own with this epic Green Goblin battle, and creating a cover scene which is almost as often ‘homaged’ as his famous Spidey #50 cover! This copy is a highly attractive VG, tight & bright, excellent cover gloss, strong staples and only minimal edge and corner wear. The only significant flaw is that a former seller has written a crayon ‘6’ just above the ‘flare’ of the Goblin’s jet-flyer, but it’s not terribly intrusive, and without it, this copy would effortlessly grade FN or better. On sale at £70. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: There were many highlights of Frank Miller’s acclaimed and groundbreaking run on Daredevil, but prominent amongst them must be #168, with the first appearance of his former and future lover and nemesis, Elektra, martial artist with a troubled past. A breakout character who became a star in her own right, Elektra’s debut has increased in desirability since the character’s rehabilitation in the Netflix DD TV show (for obvious historical reasons, we do not speak of the Jennifer Garner movie…). To complement this significant debut, we also have #181, the double-sized Elektra/Bullseye duel which resulted in our heroine’s death. Well, her first one, anyway. The #168 is a VF p copy at £80; the #181 is NM p £35.
*Marvel: “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 (with “The Two-Headed Thing” VG+ p £52, pictured) Tales to Astonish (#33, “Dead Storage”), and a selection of Tales of Suspense starring Insect Man, Monsterollo, the Creature From the Black Bog, and Elektro, who graces the cover of TOS #13 right (VG+ p £70).
*Marvel: Launched in 1972, Marvel Team-Up refined the popular guest-star format by having Spider-Man (and occasionally the Human Torch) combine forces with another Marvel star, and proved such a hit that shortly thereafter, Marvel Two-In-One followed the same format with the Fantastic Four’s Thing as host. We have many early (and therefore non-distributed) issues of both series in stock, from #3 of Marvel Team-Up and #2 of Marvel Two-In-One fresh into stock, as well as the distributed, but in high demand, issues of MTU, #65 and #66, which introduced Captain Britain to a US audience.
*Horror/Mystery 1960-1980s: Another chunky update to our stock of the quirky and distinctive Charlton horror genre of the 1970s. This time it’s a long run of Ghostly Tales from almost the first (#57, the series starting with #55, following the numbering from Blue Beetle) to the very last (#169), almost all issues present and in superior grades, averaging FN+. The usual stable of Charlton’s artistic luminaries abound, with work by Ditko, Sutton, Aparo, Staton and many others.
*Phantom: Following massive sales on the adventures of Lee Falk’s legendary hero, we’re pleased to welcome into our inventory the two DC Comics Phantom series from the 1980s: the first, by acclaimed creators Peter David and Joe Orlando, was a four-issue mini in 1988, followed by a 13-issue run from 1989 to 1990. Both complete series are currently available, averaging VF or better.
*Memorabilia & Esoterica: Five lots of Gerry Anderson memorabilia for your consideration this week. First up, a FN+ Letts TV 21 Diary (unused) from 1970, crammed full of colour and black and white photos; an extremely rare item at £60. Secondly, we have a double-sided Joe 90 Merchandise Brochure/Poster from the time of original broadcast in 1968 – VF condition at £40. Next is a Fanderson intro membership pack dating from 1987, consisting of newsletter, 2 slick multi-image posters, 1 larger poster of 4 scenes, 4 photos (Space 1999, Terrahawks, Supercar & Gerry Anderson) and associated merchandise lists and member announcements/info; priced at £30. Then there’s the Fanderson 84 convention Souvenir Booklet including Lady Penelope with Zoom Lolly photo in FN+ at £12. Finally, there’s a 1986 Thunderbirds Are Go! Exhibition Souvenir Brochure complete with Alan Tracy photo and flyer/poster, VF at £20. FAB or what?
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: It was a habit of IPC/Fleetway, in the 1960s and 1970s, to create intentionally short-run ‘Feeder’ titles, generated with the express purpose of providing two or three popular strips as ‘new blood’ to refresh their longer-running titles such as Lion, Tiger or Valiant. Some famous examples include Hurricane, Jet and the 1960s Champion, and another such was Thunder, which launched in 1970. Thunder developed several popular features, including time-stopping musician ‘Phil the Fluter’ (don’t ask), WWII robot ‘The Steel Commando’, junior Doctor Doolittle ‘Fury’s Family’, crime-fighting whiz-kids ‘The Jet Skaters’, and lovable mad scientist ‘Black Max’. Star of the show, however, was ‘Adam Eterno’, cursed to wander the Earth forever until killed by a weapon of gold – which, to be honest, is a lot more common than Kryptonite, and you’d think he’d have no bother; but unfortunately for our hero, whenever he looked like being able to end his interminable existence, Circumstances Intervened. Despite its strong line-up, Thunder duly folded after 22 issues, and all of the above-named strips made the jump into Lion, for much longer lives – in fact, appropriately, Adam Eterno dodged death again, carrying on when Lion was absorbed by Valiant! We have the complete run of Thunder back in stock, from the first to the final, in mid-grades – a couple of Fine, a few Fair, but mostly Good on average. Issue #1 is VG at £30; details on the remainder may be found in our online catalogue.
*Boys’ Adventure & War Picture Libraries: Our British #1 issue event turns its attention this week to our Picture Libraries category with two #1 issues: War At Sea and Combat; but we don’t stop there, since in this same update we also include almost a complete run of War At Sea in affordable grades, several Wild West Picture Libraries from #3 inc. a Holiday Special, Valiant PL #2 and a couple of early Battle PLs: #5 and #15.
*Girls’ Comics: New to our lists, two Summer Specials of the ever-popular Jinty, starring kennel-maid concierge ‘Dora Dogsbody’, maladroit schoolgirl ‘The Jinx From St. Jonah’s’, all-girl Bash St. Kids ‘The Snobs and the Scruffs’, and crusading nurses ‘Angela’s Angels, among the many features in these extra-thick holiday compilations! 1974 is GD (minor tear at top cover edge) at £25; 1975 VG £35.
*Girls’ Comics: Following the success of Tammy, a more ‘streetwise’ girls’ weekly, IPC/Fleetway tried to reprise the hit with Sandie, heavily pushed as a sister title. Despite an impressive line-up of creative talent, sadly Sandie didn’t ‘take’, and its short run ended in 1973, around a year and a half after its launch, with ‘Jeanie and Her Uncle Meanie’ and ‘Wee Sue’ going on to longer runs in Tammy than they had in their original series. The short run notwithstanding, Sandie offered a number of classic strips, including ‘Nat the Cat’ (for a change, an actual cat, rather than a plucky girl in a costume), beautifully drawn by Casanovas, and ‘Captives of Madam Karma’, an early effort in the ‘slave’ genre by Pat Mills, of which he famously remarked: “I’m so ashamed!”. We have added 41 non-consecutive issues of the 89-issue Sandie run, beginning in March 1972, its second month of publication, and concluding with the final number in October 1973.
Turning our attention to the distaff side in Clearance Corner, we’re offering a honking great load of Blue Jeans, the D.C. Thomson weekly which kept girls informed about pop, fashion, make-up tips and more, with a plethora of romance comics strips (in its earlier days) and photo-love stories later on. Festooned with pin-ups of a galaxy of ‘pop hunks’, many of whom are not yet dead or in prison, Blue Jeans, like many teen-girl mags, is often found with pages or pictures ripped out, but these copies are all complete. Approximately 90 issues, no duplicates, dates ranging from 1978 to 1983, with a quartet of Summer Specials from 1980 to 1993 thrown in for a heaping helping of pop-culture nostalgia! Condition ranges from Good to VF, but averaging VG/FN, clean copies in a superior second-hand grade. Yours for the relatively paltry sum of £35 – though, owing to the weight of these items, postage, if required, will be an extra £17. SORRY, THIS LOT HAS NOW SOLD
Our previously-listed spotlight this week falls on a cornerstone of the DCU. The “Hot New Character” of 1960, Hal Jordan, Green Lantern, made his debut in Showcase and proved so popular that he was awarded the twin accolades of membership in the prestigious Justice League of America, and his own ongoing series! This debut issue dated July-August 1960, featured the first appearance of GL’s intergalactic mentors, the Guardians of the Universe, who previously had been operating ‘behind the scenes’. This is a GD+ copy, nice and bright, presenting well. Moderate spine and corner wear, two tiny chips out bottom front cover edge. Light creasing bottom right corner cover, with three tiny pressure marks on cover which not impairing the image. 1.5″ magic tape to top spine. A highly presentable copy of the premier issue, at £400.
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/British section:
and in our Books Section:
As of the time of writing, these categories are bang up to date, with every item listed available.
*Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror: An update showcasing the broad range that fantasy encompasses. The Beckoning Fair One (Oliver Onions) is a classic with more than a tinge of horror. The great nineteenth-century innovator of modern fantasy, George MacDonald is featured twice, in The Golden Key, suitable for children, and in Lilith, which is considered to be his darkest work. The Forgotten Beasts Of Eld (Patricia McKillip) is more elegaic in manner, while The Castle Of Iron (L Sprague de Camp & Fletcher Pratt) and The Disappearing Dwarf (James P Blaylock) take a humorous approach.
*Clearance Corner: Our latest rock bottom price bargain lot is 9 issues of Marvel’s Crazy Magazine (plus 1 US Cracked) from the 1970s for just £10. Averaging FN condition, these examples of Marvel’s successful attempt to do a ‘MAD-alike’ are making way in our boxes for tons more stuff piling in. They fit into a small package padded envelope weighing just over 1 kg for a UK postage price (if required) of an extra £3.50. SORRY, THIS LOT HAS NOW SOLD
*Modern Reprints: Undercover and under the covers, Wally Wood’s John Cannon was the cold war all-American hero in the vein of James Bond, but tougher. This saga of sex and violence was originally produced as entertainment for the troops and is full of Wood’s gorgeous women as well as torture, explosive gunplay, nuclear bombs and even Hitler gets in there somewhere. Not for the squeamish, this handsome hardcover new edition of the complete classic also includes the comic book adventures pencilled by Steve Ditko. Priced at £32.
*DC: Batman: Year One was Frank Miller’s follow-up to the ground-breaking Batman: The Dark Knight Returns storyline of the previous year, and consolidated Miller’s status as one of the breakout creators of the later 20th Century. Unlike the self-illustrated DKR, Year One, serialised in issues #404 to #407 of the ongoing Batman title, was illustrated by David Mazzucchelli in a minimalist retro style whose understated elegance accentuates the suspense of the narrative. As the title implies, this is the first year of Batman’s activities, and inspired a plethora of lesser imitations. These are the original four issues, all in high grades. Issue #404 (VF p £13) pictured; full details in our catalogue.
*DC: We’ve extended the range of our catalogue again, taking in the full run of Adventure Comics up to its conclusion in 1983. We start with a couple of issues featuring Supergirl, before we move into new territory with Superboy, the Dollar Comics period with Wonder Woman, Flash, Deadman, the Justice Society and Aquaman, then Plastic Man and Starman with Aquaman, then Dial H For Hero, before finishing up with the digest-sized issues with Shazam and Legion of Super-Heroes reprints. So the series maintained its traditional diversity of features right up until the end! Dozens of issues new to our catalogue.
*DC/Marvel: The fondly-remembered Marvel/DC crossovers from the turn of the century have been refreshed this week with the prestige Format one-shots Batman/Daredevil, Daredevil/Batman, Batman/Punisher and Green Lantern/Silver Surfer, the Marvel & DC Present issue which teamed the X-Men and the New Teen Titans, and additions to the Amalgam line, which featured bizarre mash-ups of DC & Marvel characters, such as the Batman/Wolverine hybrid the Dark Claw. These titanic team-ups between the two leading comics publishers are always hugely popular, and we expect sales to be brisk, so move swiftly!
*Marvel: In the earliest days of the Fantastic Four, when Marvel Comics were still a well-kept cult secret, Stan Lee, having previously resisted his publisher’s request to combine the company’s Golden Age heroes into a Justice League clone, decided to plunder the company’s history anyway, but in a distinctive manner. In the earliest days of the Fantastic Four, when Marvel Comics were still a well-kept cult secret, Stan Lee, having previously resisted his publisher’s request to combine the company’s Golden Age heroes into a Justice League clone, decided to plunder the company’s history anyway, but in a distinctive manner. Johnny Storm, the Human Torch, finds in a Bowery flophouse a homeless derelict who turns out to be the long-lost and amnesiac Prince Namor, the Sub-Mariner, ruler of Atlantis (and star of his own comic book back in the 1940s). Impulsive but well-intentioned, Johnny ‘shocks’ Namor back into awareness, but when the Sub-Mariner returns to his undersea kingdom, he finds it devastated by the weapons testing of the surface world. Enraged, Sub-Mariner swears revenge on the land-dwellers – though he’s willing to make an exception for Johnny’s shapely sister Sue, the Invisible Girl – and thus began one of the most dramatic ongoing conflicts of the series, as Namor flipped from enemy to ally as the plots demanded. Eventually Sub-Mariner’s status as anti-hero earned him a series in Tales to Astonish, then the first of many ongoing solo series, and he remains a major figure in the MU to this day. This first Silver Age appearance of the Sub-Mariner is a highly attractive VG+ p copy at £600, with vibrant colour, excellent page quality, an unspolit cover image and only very minor edge wear and tiny creasing at spine; would grade higher but for Marvel chipping to right edge. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Following the revival of the First Avenger, Captain America, in Avengers #4, it wasn’t going to be long before the fans clamoured for the revival of Cap’s own series – and in Tales of Suspense #58, resident hero Iron Man was startled when Cap barged into his book for a battle royal! True to Marvel form, it was all a misunderstanding, and with the very next issue, #59, Cap joined the title in his own strip, sharing the book with Shell-Head. We are delighted to have acquired a complete run of Cap’s adventures in Tales of Suspense, from #58 to the final issue, #99. The first Cap feature issue, #59, is a highly attractive FN cents copy at £100 (pictured); the remainder (including the dual debuts of Sharon Carter and Batroc in #75) are in a wide range of grades and prices, detailed, as ever, in our online catalogue.
*Marvel: In 1987, Peter/Spidey and his long-time sweetheart Mary Jane Watson tied the knot in Amazing Spider-Man Annual #21, which featured two variant covers by John Romita Sr – a ‘civilian’ version, and a ‘superhero’ edition! This special event achieved mass media saturation at the time, and remains a sought-after milestone despite the wedding, and the entire marriage, having been annulled by one of Marvel’s later ‘events’ (demonic intervention being a common divorce citation in the MU). We are delighted to have both versions available for sale once more, the ‘civilian’ edition NM p £25, and the ‘superhero’ edition NM £30. SORRY, THESE HAVE NOW SOLD
*Marvel: A cheery jaunt through the Silver & Bronze Ages of the House of Ideas with new stock for the following titles: Avengers, Black Goliath, Cat, Dazzler, Doctor Strange, Fantastic Four, Hulk, Marvel Feature (with Ant-Man and early Thanos), Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD, Shanna the She-Devil, Strange Tales, Super-Villain Team-Up (Giant-Size), Warlock and the X-Men (several from the 1960s including #35 with Spider-Man, #212 & #213 with Wolverine Vs Sabretooth and Giant-Size #2)
*Marvel: In 1984, Wolverine was at peak popularity, and this 6-issue mini-series by Chris Claremont and Al Milgrom takes him back to his murky history in Japan, with Kitty Pryde – formerly the X-Men’s ingénue – along for the ride, as the latter is put through a trial by fire and emerges confident in her heroic identity and future. Until recently largely overlooked, significant elements of this story (sans Ms. Pryde) have been retconned into Wolverine’s cinematic history, and as such interest in this series has perked up considerably. We have the complete series of six issues, averaging NM-, pence copies, available for £25 the set. SORRY, THIS SET HAS NOW SOLD
*Miscellaneous 1940-1959: One of the myriad ‘alternative’ comics publishers of the 1940 s was Columbia, which ran the anthology Big Shot Comics for more than 100 issues from 1940 onwards. Like many such titles, Big Shot started as a collection of newspaper strip reprints – prominent among them ‘Joe Palooka’ and ‘Dixie Dugan’, which stayed with the full run – but it also augmented its content with new series created for the title. Three such were the delightful everyman-superhero pastiche ‘Sparky Watts’, from the wonderfully deranged mind of Boody Rogers, the stylish costumed adventurer ‘Skyman’, illustrated by Ogden Whitney and ‘Tony Trent, aka the Face’, the tale of a young man who dons a mysterious mask, turns green, and gains amazing abilities – hm, wonder if the folks at Dark Horse Comics ever read this? We have a selection of Big Shot from 1945 to 1947 in very affordable low-mid grades, including several (as a bonus novelty) with holiday themes: New Years’ (#52), Easter (#55) and Christmas (#84), as well as the 1947 Thanksgiving issue (#83 pictured VG £17).
*Western: The Two-Gun Kid’s career had been running successfully at Atlas/Marvel, in his own title and others, for a considerable time as a blond, guitar-wielding peripatetic troubadour, but Lee & Kirby, apparently having a spare afternoon one day, decided to reinvent the character. With issue #60 of Two-Gun Kid, the old version was gone, and in his place was Matt Hawk, mild-mannered Western lawyer, who when he couldn’t achieve justice in the courtroom, donned a mask and fought the good fight as the Two-Gun Kid! The adventures of the former TGK were hand-waved away as pulp stories which ‘inspired’ Matt Hawk, and the new version, with his secret identity, supporting cast and fixed locale, fit much more into the Marvel Comics template than his dated predecessor. Matt Hawk went on to a lengthy career and thanks to the magic of comics science, even made brief sojourns to the present day, joining the Avengers for a time (but then who hasn’t?) Presumably owing to a production error (perhaps there was some pre-production debate as to whether the ‘new’ version should be #60 or #1, undecided until virtually the last minute?) there are two known versions of this issue’s cover. One is printed with an evidently handwritten issue number and one with a mechanically-generated issue number. This is the scarcer version, with the handwritten number printed on the cover. This copy of the New Two-Gun Kid’s debut is a superior FN- p copy, with two very small interior page tears not encroaching upon the story pages. On sale at £105. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel UK: In the 1980s, Marvel UK’s determination to launch new titles led to some pretty random line-ups, and one such was Captain America’s solo title from 1980, in which the Star-Spangled Avenger was joined by Iron Man, Dazzler and the Defenders. We have the first three issues new in stock, in mid-grades, but with Free Gifts (Super-Hero Stickers) in higher grades, as well as #37 (the first colour issue!), with the Captain America Mask! Issue #1 GD with Cap sticker VF is £10; #2 VG with Dazzler sticker VF £10; #3 FN with Iron Man sticker VF £10 and #37 (scarcer than the early issues, owing to declining circulation) VF with Free Gift VF £12. SORRY, THESE HAVE NOW SOLD
*Power Comics: Following its conversion into a faux-Valiant when IPC/Fleetway took over Odhams, the Smash! Holiday Specials dropped their previous comedic livery – though ‘The Swots and the Blots’ valiantly kept the laughter coming despite the changeover. ‘His Sporting Lordship’, ‘Janus Stark’, ‘Cursitor Doom’ and ‘Sergeant Rock’ – not the famous American version – took over the heavy lifting on the all-action covers. Always popular and never commonplace, we’re delighted to have two affordable lower-grade Smash! Holiday Specials: 1969 GD £25 and 1970 FA £15. SORRY, THESE HAVE NOW SOLD
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: We have the premiere (14th September 1963) and the final (#648 7th February 1976) issues of the long-running DC Thomson adventure weekly. Created as a companion to Hotspur, Hornet’s star was ‘Bouncing’ Bernard Briggs, soccer goalie (and later jack-of-all-sports – British comics presented sportsmen the way American ones did scientists, with all the disciplines being interchangeable), who was the only survivor from the original line-up to make it all the way to the end. After a very respectable run, Bernard, along with everlasting wonder-man ‘Wilson’, crossed over to Hotspur. Our copy of #1 is GD at £40; the final issue #648 is FN at £10. SORRY, THESE HAVE NOW SOLD
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: Although a smash success, the sci-fi adventure weekly was still finding its feet by its 100th issue, and the second hundred Progs saw the debut of several characters who would prove to be among its most enduring stars. The ABC Warriors, robots designed to withstand Atomic, Bacterial and Chemical threats, premiered in #119; #127 featured the first ‘amalgamated’ 2000 AD and Tornado, in which Blackhawk, The Mind of Wolfie Smith and Captain Klep made their way over from the cancelled title; #140 brought us the debut of the long-running alien-war strip the VC’s and the first comics adaptation of Harry Harrison’s anti-hero the Stainless Steel Rat; #150 saw the first appearance of Psi-Judge Anderson in the Judge Dredd strip, illustrated by Brian Bolland; #167 brings us the one-off Nemesis debut, “Terror Tube”, and #178 gives not only the first ongoing Nemesis strip, but also a free gift Judge Dredd badge! This entire sequence #101-200 is new in our inventory!
*Girls’ Picture Libraries: It’s the turn of the Picture Library iteration of the UK’s most famous and venerable girls’ title, as we unleash more than 100 issues of Bunty Picture Library, the done-in-one digest-sized comic with a complete story every issue. Newly added we have #7, several previously missing issues from #22-50, then very many gaps filled between #51-225.
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:
*Miscellaneous 1960 Onwards
and in our Books Section:
As of the time of writing, these categories are bang up to date, with every item listed available.
*Crime, Spies & Sleaze: Here’s a trio of tales from one of the masters of hardboiled detective fiction. Bloody Sunrise features Tiger Mann, while The Girl Hunters and The Flier both feature Mike Hammer. Spillane once described his style as ‘the chewing gum of American literature’ and these three are perfect examples.
*DC: The villainous ‘Power Couple’ of the DCU, the Joker and Harley Quinn, steal the show (appropriately) this week, with a number of appearances of one or both of the Diabolical Duo. In alphabetical order: Batman & Robin Adventures #8 teams Harley with her gal-pal Poison Ivy in one of Harl’s early comics appearances NM £17; Batman – Harley Quinn is the prestige one-shot marking Harley’s entry into the DCU proper – this first printing is VF/NM £80; Batman – the Killing Joke is the legendary one-off from 1988 which redefined the Joker, by Alan Moore and Brian Bolland. This is the second US printing NM £12; Harley & Ivy – Love on the Lam is a Judd Winick/Joe Chiodo one-shot in which Ivy helps Harley escape her abusive BF – with Batgirl and the Big Bat thrown in the mix NM 1st print £20; and we round it out with a selection of the Joker’s own short-lived series from the 1970s: six of the nine published issues – #2-6 and #8 – new in stock.
*DC: The second part of our current sweep through the Silver & Bronze Ages of the DCU. New issues in of the following: Omac, Plastic Man, Sherlock Holmes, Showcase (Cave Carson & Top Gun), Strange Sports, Superman, Swamp Thing (both 1st and 2nd series, the latter with several Alan Moore issues), Teen Titans, New Teen Titans (inc 2nd Deathstroke app in #10), Joe Kubert’s Tor & World’s Finest.
*Marvel: One very successful latter-day addition to the Web-Head’s Rogue’s Gallery was the Hobgoblin, who made his debut in 1983’s Amazing Spider-Man #238. The path of carnage and mysterious identity of this suspiciously familiar evil-doer kept readers entertained for more than a year before the Big Reveal, with several red herrings and false ‘revelations’ along the way. This copy of ASM #238 is VF, cents with no UK price or overstamp, at £75 and proudly retains the Free Gift – Lakeside ‘Tattooz’ – which baffle and frustrate so many completists. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Uncanny X-Men #141 and #142, towards the end of Claremont and Byrne’s hugely popular run on Marvel’s Merry Mutants, presented a two-part story in which an adult Kitty Pryde ‘Did a ‘Terminator”. Travelling back in time to her own teenage years, she tried to avert her own dystopian future, in which Mutants were interned in prison camps or hunted to death by Sentinels, from coming to pass. This future world also brought us the first appearance of Rachel Summers, later to become Phoenix II, then Marvel Girl II, and the way the Marvel Universe is right now, possibly Iron Man XVI, who can keep track? This powerful story was already a sought-after two-parter, but its popularity (and value!) skyrocketed after the release of the X-Men film, “Days of Future Past”, which adapted the narrative to the big screen (though, it must be said, Wolverine was very unconvincing in the role of Kitty Pryde…). These are now back in stock – though not, we suspect, for long – with #141 FN+ p £25 and #142 VF/NM £50. SORRY, THESE HAVE NOW SOLD
*Marvel: With the recent rise to popularity of Thanos – soon to be the Big Bad of the Avengers/Guardians of the Galaxy crossover movie – his early appearances have been more keenly hunted, and this two-part Prestige Format micro-series is often overlooked, or erroneously sought under the non-existent title of ‘Infinity Quest’. By Thanos’ creator, Jim Starlin, this details Thanos’ Quest for all six of the Infinity Gems, and his duel with the Grandmaster for the cosmos’ mightiest bling. This is sold as a set of two, NM £50 for the pair. SORRY, THESE HAVE NOW SOLD
*Marvel: From 1959, the Pre-Dawn of the Marvel Universe, the second issue of Tales of Suspense, which, with its ‘twin’ Tales to Astonish, brought the surviving remnant of Atlas’ horror line back in tune with the space age. The science-fiction twist-ending stories in this issue offer stellar art by Russ Heath, Jack Kirby, Joe Sinnott and Steve Ditko. This copy has considerable upper edge & right corner wear and creasing, but all story pages are clean & complete. As an additional curiosity, this very copy is the one that was borrowed by Marvel themselves when they needed one to reprint in their Marvel Masterworks Tales of Suspense volume – the original owner is given a ‘thank you’ in the credits of the volume in question! This FA+ copy of an iconic early Suspense can be yours for £55. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Archie: We’re big boosters of Archie and the gang here at 30th Century, and following significant sales on the classic series, we’re pleased to top up with 50+ vintage issues from his myriad titles, including Archie, Archie Annual, Archie & Me, Archie & Riverdale High, Archie Giant Series (featuring Sabrina the Teenage Witch), Archie’s Joke Book, Betty and Me, Betty and Veronica (including 1st Super-Teen in #118), Josie (with and without Pussycats), Jughead, Laugh, Life With Archie, Pep Comics (from #64, the next-to-last appearance of the superheroic Shield in the title), Reggie and Me, Sabrina the Teenage Witch (from giant-sized #2) and the first issue of Jughead’s cousin, That Wilkin Boy! Pep #64 (FA £36) is pictured; the rest, as always, may be found in our online catalogue.
*Classics Illustrated: Well, not quite Classics Illustrated, but in this category because they appeal to the same collectors – A Classic In Pictures. This series (12 in all) was originally produced by the Amex corporation in the 1940s and 1950s and the artwork is in a very stylish red and black with a stiff card cover. All feature vivid and glorious full colour covers. We have four new in stock this week (the first we’ve ever had!) with grades ranging from VG+ to FN and prices from £20 – £30 each. An interesting complement/alternative to Classics Illustrated.
*Marvel UK: A new sweep through our incoming stock adds issues to Captain Britain (1st weekly series), Marvel Comic (the short-lived ‘rebranding’ of their premier title, Mighty World of Marvel), Super Spider-Man and Captain Britain (with original Captain Britain content), Titans, and a plethora of their digest-sized Pocket Books – including first issues of the Conan, Fantastic Four, Spider-Man and Star Heroes.
*Annuals: A chunky update to our Annuals category this week, with several addtions to our Boys’ Adventure & War and Girls’ sub-categories. Boys’: Batman from the 1980s and 1990s, Roy Of The Rovers from the 1980s through to 2000, Smash from the 1970s and Thunder 1972. Girls’: June from the 1970s and 1980s, Kim from 1983, Sandie from 1976 and School Friend from the 1970s and 1980s.
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: Dan Dare returns in Eagle Volume 6, with almost all issues added. Featuring the conclusion of Prisoners Of Space, the whole of The Man From Nowhere and the start of Rogue Planet, plus two issues with Christmas supplements and the Christmas issue.