*DC: After Superman’s first Annual in 1960, the Gotham Guardian followed suit in 1961, the first of many – oh, so many – reprint compilations, collections and compendia of the Dynamic Duo’s previous adventures. This 86-page tome (cover to cover) set the precedent for the 80-Page Giant series which rotated between various DC titles in the 60s, and this first collection hit on most of the key notes of the Batman mythos, bringing newer readers up to speed on the legend. This is a pence copy, and one of the nicer ones we’ve seen, as usually this issue, when available at all, is mid to low grade. This is a FN+, with only a small horizontal ripple – possibly exposure to moisture at some point, possibly glue ‘pucker’ – preventing a higher grade. On sale at £100.
*Marvel: For this week’s slabbed comics event, a captivating quartet of early issues featuring Marvel’s First Family, the Fantastic Four. We open with issue #6, in which Doctor Doom and the Sub-Mariner join forces; then the FF flees Earth to confront ‘The Master of Planet X’ in #7; Sub-Mariner leaves the FF homeless in issue #9 and Doctor Doom sets out to destroy the team from within in issue #10. All Lee/Kirby classics, and all CGC Blue Label (unrestored) copies. Issue #6 is 4.0 (VG) at £375, with a small hairline crack at the back of the case; #7 is 5.0 (VG/FN) at £200; #9 is also 5.0 VG/FN at £250 and #10 is 2.0 (GD) at £115.
*Marvel: By his 101st issue, Spider-Man had become temporarily encumbered with six arms, leaving him a true eight-limbed arachnoid hero; but more importantly, he met a foe who was destined to become one of the Marvel Universe’s prime anti-heroes. Following the 1971 relaxation of the Comics Code Authority (which had hitherto banned mention of vampires and werewolves in the wake of the 1950s horror comics scare), the floodgates were opened for all manner of supernatural beings; one of the first was Michael Morbius, tragic scientist who, while not a traditional vampire, gained many vampiric attributes after an experiment gone awry. Among said attributes: enhanced strength, speed, senses… and an uncontrollable craving for human blood. A big hit with the Spider-Man audience, Morbius the Living Vampire made a rapid reappearance in Marvel Team-Up #3, graduating to his own series in Fear thereafter. There have been several Morbius series in the intervening decades, and this very year, a big-budget movie starring Jared Leto as Morbius is now in post-production, leading to a heightened demand for his premier appearance. This copy of Spider-Man #101 is VG+; light to moderate wear and creasing at spine and cover corners, but no impediment of the cover scene, with bright unfaded colours and good gloss. Staples firm at cover and centrefold, interior pages off-white and flexible, with no stains, tears or markings. A cents copy, no pence price or overstamp. VG+, on sale at £200.
*Marvel: The two popular and long-running tryout series, Marvel Premiere and Marvel Spotlight, have been restocked with over 50 new copies between both titles. This batch is almost without exception cents copies, no pence price or overstamp, and in higher than average grades, averaging VF with many NM. Focusing on the one-off or short-run ‘pilots’, this is a widely diverse range of characters from newly-popular heroes (Black Panther, Star-Lord, Deathlok and the first Marvel US appearances of Doctor Who) to off-beat concepts so obscure that even the film developers haven’t optioned them – yet! (Dominic Fortune by Chaykin, Seeker 3000, Caleb Hammer, 3-D Man and the Torpedo, anyone?) Premiere, issues between # 25 to #61, and Spotlight, (1st series) between #25 to #33, newly refreshed for your entertainment!
*Miscellaneous 1960 Onwards: In the wake of the hugely popular TV show, back numbers of the already highly-acclaimed Walking Dead comic continue to acquire interest, so we’re happy to have a batch shamble back into our shop – even if are a bit ‘recent’ for our usual tastes!. In mid-grades, between VG to FN with a couple VF, a run from #134 to #156 that saw a dramatically different direction for Rick Grimes and his merry band of post-apocalyptic survivors.
*Horror/Mystery 1960-1980s: One of the most startling success stories in the back issue world is the ever-spiralling popularity of Moon Knight’s premier appearance. The series Werewolf By Night had been toddling along, chronicling the adventures of young lycanthrope Jack Russell (no, really), when the boat was suddenly rocked in WBN #32 by a vigilante whose only goal seemed to be the annihilation of our hero – and his silver armour and weapons seemed likely to achieve it! The man who would later be revealed as Marc Spector had a deeper back story, of course, and in his multitudinous appearances since, has developed a complex background oscillating between ‘Marvel’s Batman’ and ‘Multiple Personality psychotic possessed by Egyptian Gods’. Be that as it may, he remains hugely popular, and a near-future Moon Knight movie having been recently confirmed, demand for his debut is intensifying. This copy of Werewolf By Night #32 is a cents copy, no pence price or overstamp, an outstanding VF+ with tight staples, sharp corners, excellent interior page quality and only very faint stress marks at the spine. Now on sale at £900. Front and back covers and splash page are shown below; high resolution images are available on request.
*War: Ringing the changes on the warfront, several Atlas battle-themed series took the action to the seven seas, and Navy Action was one of the longer lasting, running twenty issues from June 1955 to October 1958. With battling submariner (not the Sub-Mariner – this guy was crew on a submarine!) ‘Torpedo’ Taylor as the lead character, backed up by other naval adventurers, this had a roster of stellar artists including Berg, Colan, Drucker, Williamson, Torres, Crandall and Powell, with inventive covers by Maneely, Severin and Everett. We have a virtually complete run of Navy Combat, lacking only issues #5 and #15 from the twenty-issue series. Illustrated are #1 GD/VG £44 and #2 VG+ £45. Details on the rest in our online catalogue.
*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 the only two Smash! Holiday Specials published back in stock. From 1969 and 1970 respectively, both are an extremely attractive VF grade, no trace of rust at the staples, covers firmly attached, at £50 each.
*Annuals: Following on from our ‘Immaculate Annuals’ listing of 21st April this year, another range from the same source. A selection of 1960s and 1970s Annuals newly added to our listings, in virtually immaculate condition; no prices clipped, no gift dedications, ‘This Book Belongs To’ inscriptions or other interior markings, solid spines, tight corners and bright, vibrant colours, most of these could pass as brand new but for very slight tanning of interior pages due to age. Truly lovely items, all at least VF and with several white & bright NM among the new additions, these are the best copies of these we’ve seen in 25 years in business – and several of them, we’ve never actually seen before! Titles are Champion (from 1967), Hurricane (from 1969 on), Jag (1970), Lion Book of War Adventures (1962), Roy of the Rovers (from 1967), Smash! (from 1967 on), Tiger (from 1966 on), and Valiant (from 1966 on). Illustrated are: Hurricane 1969 VF/NM £22.50; Roy of the Rovers 1967 VF/NM £22.50; Smash! 1967 VF £25; Tiger 1967 VF/NM £22.50 and Valiant 1966 VF/NM £22.50. Details on the others in our online listings – and keep an eye out for further ‘Immaculate Annuals’ listings in the Girls’, Humour and TV/Film sub-categories in the near future!
*Girls’ Picture Libraries: Strolling on through the romantic picture libraries which were targeted at the older female readership, we turn our rose-tinted glasses to D.C. Thomson’s Blue Rosette – painted covers wrapped around striking interior art – World Distributors’ Illustrated Romance Library (original covers with a plethora of reprints from US publishers inside), and a singleton from Pearson, Film Picture Library #2, with a photo-cover, but comic strip interiors adapting the cinematic epic ‘The Heart of a Man’, starring Frankie Vaughan and Anne Heywood. (No? Us neither.) We have a selection from Blue Rosette ranging from #1 to #75 and Illustrated Romance from #9 to #21. Depicted are Blue Rosette #1 VG £25, Illustrated Romance #10 FN £9 and lonely Film Picture Stories #2 FN £9. If you’re still searching for love after that, you’ll find plenty more 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 files in our American section:
As of the time of writing, these categories are bang up to date, with every item listed available.
*Crime, Spies & Sleaze: We’re fortunate to have a further selection of Midwood paperbacks, the American publisher active from 1957-1968, specialising in sleaze for a male audience (although they published many lesbian novels aimed at a male audience which also proved popular with a secondary audience of real lesbians!). Their output suggested a seedy side of American life of the time, and their covers reflected that with superb art by the likes of Robert Maguire and Paul Rader, who are both featured in the six books listed here. With grades from GD to FN and prices ranging from £15 to £30, this selection of Midwood books are likely to prove as popular as our previous release some months back. Highly collectable and sought after, often just for the covers alone!
*DC: One of the least explored of Batman’s classic villains is the sinister Scarecrow, who appeared but once in the 1940s, then stayed in limbo until resurrected for Batman #189 in 1967. Psychology professor Johnathan Crane used the mechanics of fear in his crime sprees, and despite numerous appearances since his revival, remains – certainly by comparison with the ‘Big Four’ Batman villains -enigmatic and compelling. This copy of Batman #189 does have a UK distribution pence stamp, but is otherwise virtually immaculate, an easy VF with bright cover colours, off-white flexible interiors and tight staples; VF p £275. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*DC: In Brave & Bold’s 57th issue, DC ‘piloted’ a hero quite unlike any other. Adventurer Rex Mason was exposed to an ancient artefact in a tomb and gained the power to transform his entire body, or parts thereof, into any chemical element – but at the cost of his own human appearance, becoming disfigured. The combination of implicit pathos and broad-strokes comedy, generated by writer Bob Haney’s depiction of the supporting cast and artist Ramona Fradon’s sleek, almost animation-style artwork, set the series apart from anything else, and Metamorpho quickly gained his own series. Sadly, it didn’t last, as replacement artists lost the uniqueness, but Metamorpho himself has been a mainstay of the DC Universe ever since. This copy of Rex’s premiere is a sparkling VF-, tight & bright with only a hint of wear at the very top cover edge. A cents copy, no pence price or overstamp, on sale at £120. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*DC: A large selection of DC titles from across the decades this update, including: Blackhawk, Black Lightning, Boy Commandos (1970s reprint), Challengers Of The Unknown, Steve Ditko’s Creeper, DC Comics Presents (#27 with 1st Mongul), DC Special Series (Swamp Thing), Jack Kirby’s Demon, 80 Page Giant (featuring Flash & Batman), Firestorm (#3 with 1st Killer Frost), First Issue Special (#1 with Kirby’s Atlas), From Beyond The Unknown (sci-fi reprints), Hellblazer, House Of Mystery (inc early horror/mystery, Martain Manhunter and 1st Dial H For Hero issue #156), Inferior Five (from #1, a personal favourite), Isis (DC TV Comic), Kirby’s Justice Inc and Justice League of America (inc low grade #21 & #22, Crisis on Earths One and Two).
*Marvel: One of Marvel’s most successful attempts at diversifying their line in the 1970s was their cash-in on the Martial Arts craze, with Shang-Chi, Master of Kung Fu! His inauspicious debut in Special Marvel Edition, a series previously devoted to reprints, indicated that there wasn’t much faith in Steve Englehart and Jim Starlin’s co-creation, but readers took him to their collective hearts, and more than 100 issues ensued, with a star roster of creators including Doug Moench, Gene Day and Paul Gulacy. In Special Marvel Edition #15, December 1973, the Son of Fu Manchu discovers his villainous heritage, and sets out to oppose his father, and in #16 he faced his childhood friend and now evil opposite number, the man named Midnight. Only two issues of Special Marvel Edition featured Shang-Chi, as with #17 the title was rechristened Master of Kung Fu in his honour. With the recently-announced arrival of a Shang-Chi film, these issues – never distributed in the UK, and therefore already in high demand – are gaining traction rapidly; issue #15 is VF+, with only a few very light breaks in spine colour, selling at £300; issue #16 is (at the moment) a comparatively bargainaceous FN £20. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Last year’s demise of both Stan Lee and Steve Ditko has reawakened interest in their founding years of the Amazing Spider-Man, and while of course we regret the circumstances, we’re delighted that people are coming to a new appreciation of this period, which we’ve always regarded as the ‘real’ Spidey. Following significant sales on the Lee & Ditko Spider-Man run, we’ve added in several from this period between #21 and #33, in a range of conditions from very affordable low grades to highly collectible upper grades. Depicted are #30 FN £65, #31 (with the double debuts of Harry Osborn and Gwen Stacey) VG/FN p £110, and the iconic #33 VG/FN p £90; for grades and prices on the others, as always, consult our catalogue listings. SORRY, #31 NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Not a ‘key’ issue; not a fabulous first appearance; not a universe-rending battle for reality. Just a simple, poignant and masterful example of done-in-one storytelling without the bloated ‘epics’ of today, as a man with a scheme for revenge against Reed Richards steals the identity of one of Reed’s closest friends, and discovers the truth. It’s a tale of revenge, loss and redemption, and proves that while Lee & Kirby’s output is often emulated, at their peak it is truly inimitable. VG+ p £40 SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Following his 1976 return to Marvel, the legendary Jack Kirby was anxious not to get trapped in the cycle of just illustrating super-heroes again, and one of his conditions was that he would be allowed to write and draw his own concepts. How much of the Eternals concept was his is, politely, open to debate; heavily ‘influenced’ (ahem, ahem) by the popular Erich Von Daniken paperbacks, which postulated that mankind’s ancient ‘Gods’ were alien visitors, Kirby’s Eternals portrayed the return of ancient immortal extraterrestrials, and the cataclysmic repercussions for humanity. Originally intended to stand apart from the Marvel Universe, it was shoehorned in at editorial insistence, which resulted in Kirby eventually abandoning the strip mid-narrative. Because of this dissonance, the Eternals have been comparatively overlooked by all but the most diehard Kirby Kollectors, but with the confirmation of an Eternals movie franchise starring Richard Madden (Game of Thrones, The Bodyguard) as Ikaris, prices are spiralling. We have a complete run of all 19 issues of Eternals, plus the one and only Annual, newly in stock, averaging VF with many better. Issue #1 is VF/NM £115; prices and grades on all the others may be seen in our online catalogue.
*Marvel: A captivating quartet of key issues from Jade-Jaws’ solo series. In #168, Bruce Banner’s beloved, Betty Ross, fell foul of gamma radiation (it was her turn that week) and became the Harpy, a venomous virago with incredible power and a hate-on for the Hulk; recently revived in the current Hulk series, the Harpy’s debut is rapidly climbing in value. #271 saw the second-ever appearance of Rocket Raccoon, a formerly moribund character who had appeared only in a black & white mag back-up; this was Rocky’s first appearance in full-colour in the Marvel Universe proper, and paved his way for later superstardom on the big screen with the Guardians of the Galaxy. Issue #340 is a little later than we normally list, but the Hulk/Wolverine clash featured therein, with its often-homaged iconic cover image, is always sought after. And venturing even closer into (shudder) modern times, Hulk #449 saw the first official appearance of the Thunderbolts, the villain-turned-hero team… or had they really reformed? The T-Bolts were stars of their own series for more than 100 issues, and remain pivotal players in Marvel Comics today. Hulk #168 is VF+ £40; #271 is FN- £40; #340 is VF p £40 and #449 is NM £30. SORRY, THESE HAVE NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Marvel Super-Heroes Secret Wars, the brainchild of then Editor-In-Chief Jim Shooter, was the first of the mega-crossovers in 1984, pre-dating even DC’s more famous Crisis On Infinite Earths, and setting a company-wide precedent for decades to come. The key issue of this series is of course #8, with the first in-timeline appearance of the black alien symbiote Spider-Man costume which would, eventually become Venom. (Its first chronological appearance was in ASM #252, but this flashback explained how Pete got it). However, other events this series included the first appearance of new heroine Spider-Woman II (Julia Carpenter, later Arachne) the premiere of two villainesses, Titania and Volcana, and the death of the Wasp! (It’s okay; she was only gone for a minute.) We have the entire original 12 issue series fresh into stock, averaging NM- grades, all but #3 pence copies, and being sold as a set for £160. Illustrated is issue #8 VF/NM p. SORRY, THIS SET HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Among the many innovations of Frank Miller’s hugely-acclaimed reinvention of Daredevil was the addition to the Matt Murdock mythos of our hero’s long-lost love, Elektra, who came back into his life as a tormented and conflicted ninja assassin. (We’ve all had bad break-ups…) This time, we have three CGC Blue Label (no restoration) Miller Daredevils, all featuring Matt’s most beloved enemy. #174 features her battling side-by-side with DD and a reformed Gladiator, CGC 9.6 (NM+) at £60; #181 is CGC 9.6 again, with her battle with Bullseye leading to her (first) death at £50 and #190, with her first resurrection – not a phrase you often use outside the comics world – is 9.8 (NM/M) at £40. #174 is a cents copy, the other two, unusually for CGC slabbed items, are pence. SORRY, #181 NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Following his return from Limbo as part of the dynamic Defenders, a solo series for Stephen Strange was inevitably on the (tarot) cards, and Marvel duly obliged with Marvel Premiere #3, a book-length tale by Stan Lee and Barry Smith which re-established him as the Sorceror Supreme. Doctor Strange held the title until issue #14, when he spun off into his own long-running eponymous title, but here is where his much-acclaimed return got started. Issue #3 is a beautiful VF/NM, firm staples, unbroken cover colour, glossy with tight corners, on sale at £80; other early Marvel Premiere Stranges, in mid to high grades, have been added to our online listings. SORRY, PICTURED ITEM NOW SOLD
*Marvel: A round-up of stray issues from the era of the All-New, All-Different X-Men, starting with the second issue (#95, Death Of Thunderbird) and ending at #268, taking in along the way many chapters of the Phoenix/Dark Phoenix saga which is a much heralded sequence in this award-winning period of Marvel’s lead title of the time. For further details, take a look at our online catalogue.
*EC: For EC Fan-Addicts, we present a creepy quintet of Vault of Horror, one of EC’s core (or should that be corpse?) titles! A nice consecutive run from #36 to the final issue, #40. Issue #37 introduced the Vault-Keeper’s shapely if mute assistant Drusilla, but even her charms proved insufficient to stave off the anti-comic crusade, and the forces of censorship triumphed. All with disturbingly elegant and evocative covers by Johnny Craig, the interiors sport superlative art by the likes of Craig, Ingels, Evans, Davis and more, featuring the combo of ghoulish horror and black humour that was often imitated, but seldom equalled. Issue #36 is an outstanding FN- with virtually unmarred black background expect for faint edge wear, on sale at £125. Issue #37 is GD at £55; it looks nicer, but does have a glued spine and cover colour touches, so the price has been adjusted to reflect this. Details of the rest, as ever, in the catalogue listing. SORRY, PICTURED ITEMS NOW SOLD
*Miscellaneous 1940-1959: Continuing its numbering from distaff Archie-clone Cindy Smith, Crime Can’t Win launched with issue #41 in 1951, and would have marked quite a departure for loyal readers. A shameless imitation, down to the logo and layout, of Gleason’s hugely successful Crime Does Not Pay, the first issue offered the cover come-on, ‘The Girl Who Planned Her Own Murder’, and things only got more lurid from there, with an early horror story in #43, the third issue. After that, the title switched back to conventional numbering with #4, before running afoul, like all other Crime series, of the newly established Comics Code Authority, and closing with #12. We have all but #6, for a virtually complete run. Depicted is said final issue, #12 FN £34 – say hello to ‘The Sewer Rat!’ (Don’t get too attached…) Details of the others in our online catalogue.
*Horror/Mystery 1960-1980s: A long overdue top-up to our Tomb Of Dracula stocks, featuring many early issues (from #2 up) previously missing from our listings. Your chance to top up on issues of Wolfman and Colan’s gothic-esque masterpiece for your collection.
*Western: Of the many real-life Western characters, good and bad, adapted into comics and other media, Wyatt Earp, lawman and gambler, is one of the most popular, having starred in highly-fictionalised adventure series from at least three publishers. Atlas’ series launched in 1955, with a superior artistic pedigree, contributors including Maneely (who did several astonishingly intricate covers), Everett, Severin and Williamson, and the first run lasted until issue 1960’s #29, on the cusp of the Marvel Age. We have the first 14 of that series now in stock, a nice consecutive run in mostly respectable mid-grades. Illustrated are #1 VG £40 and #2 FN- £31; for the others, round up our catalogue listing! SORRY, PICTURED ITEMS NOW SOLD
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: Technically a Holiday Special, but in a format like a paperback Annual, 1967’s Valiant Space Special was squarebound and 100 pages cover to cover, featuring original, non-reprint adventures of Valiant favourites with a space theme – Captain Hurricane, Kelly’s Eye, the Steel Claw, and yes, even Billy Bunter and the Nutts get into the act! Plus other sci-fi stories without leading characters: ‘The Kids from Kosma’, ‘The War Torn Planet’, ‘Invasion from Space’, and ‘The Space Freighters’. This is not a common item, and the paperback format means that even those copies which survive have usually sustained wear and creasing; this one is a lovely FN/VF, with no interior markings of any kind, tight squarebound spine, and only the tiniest bit of wear to the lower spine. On sale at £60. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: The 1978 debut of 2000 AD companion, Starlord, produced a swath of science-fiction series – ‘Timequake’, ‘Planet of the Damned’, ‘Ro-Busters’ and ‘Strontium Dog’ among them – on slick paper with more colour pages than its more famous sibling. Starlord was created as a ‘feeder’ title, intended to hopefully produce a couple of ‘star’ strips and give 2000 AD a quickie circulation boost when it was absorbed by the older weekly. After only 22 issues, it duly became part of 2000 AD, with ‘Strontium Dog’ and ‘Ro-Busters’ (later rebranded ‘ABC Warriors’) leading much longer lives than they had in their original home. The importance of those two series, and Starlord’s short achievable run status, means the series is highly sought-after today, and we’re delighted to have a virtually complete run, lacking only the antepenultimate number, but including the one-off Summer Special and five of the six first issue Free Gift variants, plus the Free Gift issues #2 & #3 – So this is a First Quenchers, Long Hot Summer, Free Gift Farrago Combo Extravaganza! Depicted are issue 1# VF with Free Gift VF (Time Warden Badge); issue #1 VF with Free Gift VF (Skateboard Strike Force Badge) ; issue #1 VF with Free Gift VF (Pilot Badge); issue #1 VF with Free Gift VF (Robot Regiment Badge) and issue #1 VF with Free Gift VF (Laser Specialist Badge) – all the first issue VF with Free Gift VF combos are £45 each. Also shown; #2 FN with Free Gift VF (Space Calculator) at £35; #3 VF with Free Gift VF (Starblast game) £35 and 1978 Summer Special VF £40.
*Boys’ Adventure & War Picture Libraries: Commencing in 1959, GM Smith/Micron’s Combat Picture Library, despite being relatively obscure compared to the more illustrious Commando, Battle, etc., nevertheless managed a very respectable 1,000+ issue run until 1985, outlasting many rivals. The early issues particularly are much less commonly seen than comparable Air Ace or Battle Picture Libraries, and have quite a bit of visual appeal, with intricate interior art and striking painted covers. We have 80 early issues – more than three-quarters of the first 100 – newly into stock, commencing with #8 and ending with #100, and in a truly superior grade; all of our new additions bar one are Fine – the singleton slips to VG – and to be honest, many of them are gleaming and virtually immaculate, no rust or staining and with only the very faint ‘pucker’ from spine glue preventing them from being VF. An astonishing average grade for their vintage. Pictured: #11 FN £15 and #23 FN £8.
*Girls’ Picture Libraries: Up to 100 different issues of the popular done-in-one digests starring the Four Marys, Moira Kent and other regulars from the weekly title, plus a myriad of one-off schoolgirls, ballerinas, detectives, equestriennes, gymnasts and girls from outer space. This swathe of new additions begins with the third issue and stretches all the way to #148, averaging FN grades, very clean and collectable copies. Illustrated are #13 FN £12 and #20 FN £12.
*Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror: A bevy of books by three authors who should need no introduction. Bob Shaw is represented by 1 Million Tomorrows, Cosmic Kaleidoscope, Other Days, Other Eyes, The Ceres Solution and The Palace Of Eternity (with a recommendation by A E Van Vogt). Norman Spinrad is responsible for No Direction Home (recommended by Theodore Sturgeon) and Agent Of Chaos (spookily /presciently this features a character called Boris Johnson, plotting to overthrow the government!). Van Vogt’s titles are Away And Beyond, Empire Of The Atom, Mission To The Stars, Slan, The Darkness On Diamondia, The House That Stood Still, The Man With A Thousand Names, The Pawns Of Null-A and two editions of The Weapon Makers. The majority of these are 1st PBs from the 1960s and 1970s. As an added bonus there’s some classic cover art from Jack Gaughan, Ed Veligursky, Bruce Pennington and Chris Foss.
We’ve barely had time lately to feature items from our existing stock that you may have missed, but we couldn’t resist reminding you of this classic: Justice League of America #1 (1960), graded by PGX at 6.5 (FN+), now offered at £1900. An iconic Murphy Anderson cover featuring the Flash playing chess with Despero in his first appearence, with the other Justice Leaguers as the pieces. You can see why over at Marvel Marty Goodman asked Stan Lee to come up with something as good (he invented the Fantastic Four); for our money, as great as the FF were, the JLA were first and best!
*Clearance Corner: Here at 30th Century, we love the Beano — it’s a British comics institution and features classic, immortal characters. But there’s no doubting that with the decline of the UK comics industry in recent decades, its longest survivor has declined too, and later Beanos are less collected than their classic period. So the time has come for us to dispense with our 1981 upward stock. We have two lots for your consideration: first up, 16 issues from 1988-1995 inc 8 complete with original Free Gifts and also including the 50th Anniversary issue and a handful of Christmas and New Year issues — all just for £15 (UK postage if required will be an extra £4).
*Clearance Corner: Our second Beano bargain this week comprises 80 regular issues from 1981-1986, on offer for just £20; UK postage on these if required would be an additional £8. SORRY, THIS LOT HAS NOW SOLD
*Clearance Corner: Starved of the real thing in the 1950s and early 1960s, the public sought out these faux American-sized comics published by Miller and others which featured original British strips (or European reprints) in black and white. We’re clearing out a whole bunch of them this week with adventure and war themes: 20 issues for just £20 (with an additional £4 UK p&p if required). Titles are: Battle (Anglo) x 2, Bulldog Brittain x 1, Captain Tornado x 4, Captain Vigour x 1, Charles Rand x 1, Dick Hercules x 1, Pango x 1, Sgt O’Brien x 7, Union Jack Library x 1 (an odd man out from 1918 with a Sexton Blake story) and Yarmak x 1. Your early attention is suggested, since we doubt these will last long at this price. SORRY, THIS LOT 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 American section:
*DC (A – J)
As of the time of writing, these categories are bang up to date, with every item listed available.
*Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror: This time we have three works by Abraham Merritt, a writer who cut his authorial teeth writing for Pulps, with the combination of Horror, Fantasy and Science Fiction that remains popular today. First up is a 1951 Avon edition of Burn Witch Burn, followed by one of his most famous novels, Seven Footprints To Satan. We have two editions of the final novel, Dwellers In The Mirage, one from Paperback Library (1962) and the other from Futura (1974).
*DC: In Batman #232, the creative team of Denny O’Neil and Neal Adams created one of Batman’s most significant villains: Ra’s al Ghul, a.k.a. the Head of the Demon, leader of the League of Assassins, and father of Talia, the only woman who ever posed Catwoman a serious threat for the Caped Crusader’s affections. Both Talia and the League had made a couple of appearances before this, but this issue was the first time the readers saw the mysterious head of the League, and this issue kick-started an epic saga that continues to unravel to this very day, as well as opening the way for Ra’s appearances in the DC TV Universe and other media crossovers. This landmark issue, with gorgeous Neal Adams artwork throughout, is represented in our stock by a highly attractive FN/VF copy, no pence price or overstamp, unimpeded cover scene with off-white, flexible interior pages and tight staples and corners. On sale at £275. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*DC: The Forever People, five empowered youths each of whom reflected a middle-aged to elderly man’s perception of a hippie ‘type’, were intended to be a younger, fresher face for Jack Kirby’s Fourth World saga, but their relative inexperience didn’t stop them from getting embroiled with the heavy hitters – as witnessed by the fact that their first issue saw the first ‘in person’ appearance of Darkseid, who previously had only appeared on-screen delivering orders to various underlings. We have restocked our listing of the Super-Teens from Super-Town, including #1 FN/VF p £70 (first full Darkseid), #2 (with the double debuts of Mantis (not the Marvel one!) and Desaad, and some later issues with a surprising guest appearance by Deadman. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*DC: Newly added, more than 60 issues of Brave & Bold’s second half – a solid run of Batman team-ups with the super-stars and the super-obscure heroes from the DC Universe. Popular and frequently recurring partners for the Caped Crusader – despite not having their own series at the time – were Metamorpho, Wildcat and the Metal Men, while most of Bat’s Justice League colleagues were frequent attendees. More oddball team-ups included Lois Lane, Rose & the Thorn, Swamp Thing, Kamandi, Man-Bat and the Riddler! Almost all issues illustrated by Jim Aparo, and almost all done-in-one stories. Highlights include two issues where Batman teamed up with the Joker rather than opposing him – #111 and #191 – and the classic and poignant ‘Interlude on Earth-Two’ from #182 – but almost any given B & B from this period was a reliable jolt of fast paced super-hero action without the need to get involved in a universe-spanning saga.
*DC: One of the madder DC titles, outstripped only by its distaff counterpart Lois Lane, was Jimmy Olsen, the series in which Superman’s Pal gained and lost super-powers, underwent weird bodily transformations, and was romanced by a bewildering array of alien ladies who had a thing for ginger shortarses. Just everyday events in the life of a newspaper reporter, as I’m sure any journos of your acquaintance will attest. We’ve topped up our Jimmy inventory with issues ranging from #31 – the first appearance of one of Jimmy’s longer-lasting alter-egos, Elastic Lad – through to #146, a time when Jack Kirby had taken over the series and linked it into his Fourth World saga. Along the way, Jimmy romances Supergirl, becomes Colossal Boy, brings Beatlemania to the ancient past, and marries a gorilla while witch-doctor Superman conducts the wedding. As you do. Embrace the crazy!
*Marvel: Hulk #180 featured the first appearance of Wolverine, the Canadian super-hero who, outstripping everyone’s expectations, became the most popular Marvel character since the dawn of the Marvel Age. Co-created by Len Wein, Wolvy was revived by Wein when he put together the New X-Men in Giant-Size X-Men #1; subsequently Wolverine became the star of the X-Men and a media darling in his own right. Having said that, it wasn’t a lengthy first appearance – in the final panel of #180, Wolverine popped up to make dire threats to both Jade-Jaws and guest-monster the winsome Wendigo – but it’s still the first on-panel appearance of the decade’s mega-hot star. Wolvy’s first major appearance was in #181, of course, but in #182, he appeared on most of the first page, being extracted by his mysterious handlers before the story rolled along without him. Neither of these issues was ever distributed in the UK, but these gaps in your Wolverine history can now be filled! Our new copy of #180 is a shiny VF+, with excellent cover colour and gloss, tight corners, firm staples and only very light, almost imperceptible creasing in the upper right cover corner. The #182 is still nicer at VF/NM, sharp corners and deep unfaded cover colour. Most crucially, both Marvel Value Stamps (the cut-’em-out curse of 1970s Marvels) are firmly in place! Both cents copies (no pence variants on these)), #180 is VF+ £575 and #182 is VF/NM £150. SORRY, THESE HAVE NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Dire threats against the heroes’ loved ones had, of course, been a stock-in-trade of popular entertainment since time immemorial, but in 1973’s Amazing Spider-Man #121, when Peter Parker’s love Gwen Stacy was imperilled by the Green Goblin, readers were genuinely shocked and saddened when Spidey’s daring rescue simply didn’t work – and Gwen was no more. Heroes had often been inspired by the death of a loved one, of course, but they were usually off-panel and frequently before the series actually began. This was the first time that someone the readers had ‘known’ for years was killed, and it changed the tone of the series forever. Our latest copy of Spider-Man #121 is FN/VF, a bright, unmarred copy with no creasing, but a very few tiny nicks on the lower cover edge. On sale at £195. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Iron Fist’s 1977 title, though critically acclaimed and well-received, failed to catch a mass audience, and was cancelled with its fifteenth issue. But in retrospect, its next-to-last issue, #14, has become hugely sought after as the debut of Sabretooth, one of the X-Men’s most popular enemies, and sometimes related to Wolverine in some sense – depending on what continuity was in force in a given week. Ironically, it’s only Sabretooth’s premier appearance by accident – he was intended to appear first in Ms. Marvel #24, but that series was cancelled with issue #23, so here he is, in all his feral glory! This is a CGC Blue Label (no restoration) copy, graded 9.6 (NM+ equivalent), but – full disclosure – there is a crack in the ‘shell’ of the CGC casing, at the lower rear left of the case. The case remains intact, with no exposure of the comic, and the comic itself is untouched, but nevertheless, in view of the case not being pristine, we have adjusted the asking price to £400. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: One of the more ground-breaking issues of the 1970s was Iron Man #128, in which creators David Michelinie and John Romita Jr. played out the plot they’d been building up for months; the dark underside of Tony Stark’s insouciant playboy façade, as his struggle with alcoholism was revealed. This was presented as an ongoing illness, rather than being wrapped up neatly by the issue’s end, and in fact even the current Tony Stark is still influenced by his addiction. Although the story caused controversy and outrage at the time of its release, over time it has received acclaim and respect as the first serious presentation of the subject in a mainstream comic. This copy of the ground-breaking issue is VF+ p, with only a few light spine ‘ticks’ preventing a higher grade, on sale at £40.
*Marvel: One of the forerunners of the ‘second wave’ of the Marvel Universe in 1968 was Captain Marvel, warrior of the mighty Kree Empire, which had featured in the Fantastic Four and elsewhere. Exiled on Earth and forced to live among humans, Mar-Vell found his loyalties strangely shifting. Originally created as a cynical exercise in copyright protection (a minor publisher had produced a short-lived ‘Captain Marvel’ series a few years before, and Marvel Comics didn’t want their ‘brand’ hijacked by another company!), Captain Marvel, as well as the Silver Surfer, expanded the Marvel Universe beyond the confines of Earth and put the Marvel heroes firmly on the cosmic stage. We have the good Captain’s premier appearance in Marvel Super-Heroes #12 new in, in an attractive VG p copy, with very light wear at top and bottom of the squarebound spine, but tight, flat and clean with considerable eye appeal. On sale at £40. SORRY, THIS HAS NOW SOLD
*Marvel: Having appeared in Ghost Rider #1 & #2, Daimon Hellstrom made his first solo appearance as the title star in Marvel Spotlight #12. In the wake of other Marvel hits starring occult characters, and with the Exorcist movie taking big box-office, Stan Lee had originally proposed a series starring Satan himself, but Roy Thomas commuted it to Satan’s offspring, a demon/human hybrid who used his evil-spawned power for good, in rebellion against his father. Despite controversy from Christians and other religions – Satanists and Wiccans wrote in to complain about their faiths being portrayed as evil – Son of Satan proved a short-term hit, lasting an appropriate 13 issues in Marvel Spotlight before launching his own solo series – which fizzled after issue #8. Oops. Nevertheless Daimon remains a prominent character today in the Marvel Universe, though he doesn’t use the Son of Satan soubriquet any more, and his origins are usually politely redacted. This is his complete Marvel Spotlight run, from #12 (VF/NM £40) to #24, a clash with his sinister sibling Satana. Averaging VF, this is a high-grade run of mostly non-distributed issues.
*Marvel: In the early 70s, with Women’s Lib being a hot topic, Stan Lee brainstormed some titles aimed at women. Jungle girls had, in the 1950s, scored big with a female readership, so Marvel attempted to buy the rights to the Fiction House character Sheena, Queen of the Jungle, but when that failed, Marvel simply created their own taste-alike version. Raised in Africa, statuesque redhead Shanna O’Hara had had a tragic life, beginning when her father accidentally shot her mother when the latter’s pet leopard went on the rampage. Should’ve gone to Specsavers, Pop. Educated back in the USA, Shanna became a veterinarian and eco-activist, but became increasingly disillusioned with the cruelty of western man, whereupon she returned to Africa to defend wildlife while wearing a few strips of leopard fur which barely covered her ya-yas. Despite her ludicrous origin, Shanna went on to become a major character, primarily through her association with Ka-Zar, and has evolved into a level-headed pragmatist whose intelligence and common sense belie her stripperific outfit. The entire five-issue run is now available in high grades, with gorgeous Steranko covers on the first two and the villainous debuts of Mandrill and Nekra, respectively, in #4 & #5. #1 VF+ £37 is shown; the rest may be found in our catalogue. SORRY, PICTURED ITEM NOW SOLD