*DC: The Julius Schwartz helmed period of Strange Adventures in the early 1960s is fondly remembered, both for the superior science fiction shorts by top creators and also for the recurring characters such as Star Hawkins, the Atomic Knights and the Space Museum. Fresh in we have a new batch of very presentable copies between #112 and #155, including the first appearance of the Faceless Creature in #124 and the only Atomic Knights cover (vs the Mole People) on #144. Here we also love giant frogs (#155)! Full details as always in our catalogue.
*DC/Marvel: In 1976, after some delicate negotiations, the two major publishers decided to pool their talents and create a team-up between their two iconic characters which proved too big for a regular-sized comic – so the tabloid-sized format, as seen in Marvel’s Treasury Editions and DC’s Limited Collectors’ Editions, was co-opted for this epic event! While Wizard of Oz is technically the first Marvel/DC co-production, that’s really just DC piggybacking onto a project Marvel had already produced, to avoid litigation (long story, Wiki it if you’re bothered). This was the first true collaboration between the titans of the comics industry, and it’s a tribute to the organisation involved that Superman and Spider-Man (as well as guest-villains Lex Luthor and Doctor Octopus) are note-perfect in this mega-sized saga. This is a gleaming and glossy VF/NM, with tight corners and squarebound spine in excellent condition.
PICTURED: SUPEREMAN VS THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN VF/NM £125 SOLD
*Marvel: Among the most sought after comics of the 1970s, Hulk #180-182 featured the first appearances of Wolverine, the Canadian super-hero who, outstripping everyone’s expectations, became the break-out Marvel character of the 1970s. Created by Len Wein and Herb Trimpe (from a John Romita design), Wolvy was revived by Wein when he put together the New X-Men who debuted in Giant-Size X-Men #1, and since then, Wolverine became the star of the X-Men, and a media darling in his own right. We have acquired all three of Wolverine’s earliest appearances; Hulk #180 is technically Wolverine’s debut, though he only appears in a couple of panels to threaten Jade-Jaws and guest-monster Wendigo. This is a FN+ copy, the only significant flaws being very minor wear at cover corners and a partially erased black squiggle in the upper left cover corner, over the issue number and price. #181 is The Big One for the Little Guy: the first ‘Full Wolvy’, in which he battles both beside and with the Hulk against the menace of the Wendigo. This is VG+, sound and clean, but with one long diagonal cover crease from the mid-cover edge to the base of the cover; if you can live with the crease, this is a great chance to grab a copy of this most prized Bronze Age comic before the prices spiral even higher. Wrapping up the trilogy, we have #182, in which Wolverine says a fond farewell to the Hulk while being picked up by his handlers for his next mission. This is VG+, with only one specific localised flaw, creasing to the lower edge, underneath the boot of the implausibly-named guest-villain Anvil. All three of these key issues have the Marvel Value Stamp (that pernicious cut-out which blights collectors of 1970s Marvels) present and intact. None of them were ever distributed in the United Kingdom – thanks once again, Marvel UK – so while they’re not commonplace anywhere, they’re especially scarce in our green and pleasant land. High resolution images for #181 are available on request.
#180 FN+ £325 SOLD
#181 VG+ £1300 SOLD
#182 VG+ £50 SOLD
Regular 30th Century visitors will know that every week we feature one or more Spider-Man updates, such is the popularity of your friendly neighbourhood wall-crawler. Well, for the next few weeks we’re upping the ante, and each week will feature several updates for Spidey, with slabbed and raw copies, pence and cents copies, high and low grade and everything in between, from Ditko to the end of the first series and beyond, plus lots of extras. Hang loose with us as we showcase Spider-Mania Max, and enjoy the ride!
*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 the trailers for the Jared Leto-starring Morbius flick are out on the web as I write, leading to a heightened demand for his premier appearance. This copy of Spider-Man #101 is FN; one small and very faint diagonal cover crease, from lower mid-spine to approximately 15mm in from cover edge, barely perceptible. Light ballast ink markings lower spine and bottom edge of book, 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.
PICTURED: AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #101 FN £300
*Marvel: Well, I don’t think anyone saw this coming back in 1973! In Amazing Spider-Man #121, Gwen Stacey died at the hands of the Green Goblin, and that villain perished himself in the very next issue. These landmark stories still resonate to this day, and although perhaps somewhat diluted by the return of both characters (hey kids, this IS comics!), the impact at the time was momentous and both issues still attract much collector interest. Our newest issue #121 is VG, with light to moderate spine wear and slight breaking of cover colour around the lower left corner, with a shallow tear at lower cover edge. #122 is VG/FN, without any cover wear as such, but a shallow tear at mid top cover. Both are cents copies of course, since these issues were not distributed in the UK.
PICTURED: AMAZING SPIDER-MAN
#121 VG £120 SOLD
#122 VG/FN £90 SOLD
*Marvel: We’re always happy to welcome an early Spider-Man issue illustrated by Steve Ditko (the only ‘proper’ Spider-Man artist, excellent later contributors notwithstanding), and this one’s a bit special, featuring as it does the first guest appearance of the then-fledgling Man Without Fear, Daredevil, and, we believe, his only guest-appearance in his original black & gold costume! Teamed with Spider-Man against the menace of the Ringmaster (against whose hypnosis DD’s blindness gives him an unexpected immunity) and his Circus of Crime, this action-packed issue is an attractive VG, structurally very sound, but it has been exposed to moisture at some point in its career. This results in ‘rippling’ to the lower quarter of the book, and a faint discolouration (just barely perceivable under DD’s right foot) in the lower cover corner.
PICTURED: AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #16 VG £160
*Marvel: By the time of Spider-Man’s 50th issue, ‘new’ artist John Romita had made the series his own, and this milestone number was marked with the debut of a new villain, the Kingpin – so long associated with Daredevil, in the post-Miller years, that younger readers are unaware that he originated in Spider-Man’s Rogues’ Gallery! The cover of #50, with Peter temporarily abandoning his Spider-Man identity, has become etched in the minds of a generation, endlessly imitated and ‘homaged’, in comics and other media. This is an attractive FA+, much more appealing than the bare grade would indicate. The cover is virtually detached, but the cover scene itself is unmarred, with only minor creasing at the lower right corner, and bright, vivid colour throughout.
PICTURED: AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #50 FA+ p £100
*Marvel: At the turn of the century, Marvel decided to ‘reboot’ its entire universe by creating the ‘Ultimate’ line – reader-friendly, ground-floor entry series refreshing the classic characters with younger protagonists and modernised backgrounds for the 2000s. Although these ‘Earth-2’ series ultimately fizzled out, they had a very respectable run, racking up hundreds of issues for more than a decade, and one character ‘broke through’ to the mainstream Marvel Universe as we know it. In a shocking twist, Peter Parker, the Spider-Man of the Ultimate Universe, died and his mantle was taken by one Miles Morales, who subsequently emerged in the MU, and is active today, the star of his own popular series. This transition occurred in issue #4 of the 2011 mini-series Ultimate Fallout, where Miles takes up the Spider-Man identity for the first time, and we have the first printing of this now sought-after item in stock in NM-. If you just fancy reading the story, we also have as a bonus a second printing available in FN-.
PICTURED: ULTIMATE FALLOUT #4 NM- (1ST PRINT) £65 SOLD
*Marvel: A chunky top-up to the Iron Man and Captain America split book phase of Tales Of Suspense between #62 and #98, including the 1st Silver Age Red Skull in #65, the first Titanium Man in #69 and the 1st New Zemo in #98, along with many others. Consult our catalogue for full details.
*Marvel: This triple-threat for Thor saw him fighting the menace of Tana Nile and the Colonisers of Rigel, an alien race who were expanding ever outwards into the galaxy – and planned to make Earth their next housing project, whether the Thunder God liked it or not! Tana had been ‘teased’ as Jane Foster’s enigmatic room-mate since #129, but these were the issues in which she revealed her true form and agenda – and, along the way in this cosmic drama, we were introduced to two more popular and well-loved characters: Ego the Living Planet (later played by Kurt Russell in the Guardians of the Galaxy movies) and the Recorder (Recorder 211, to give him his full name). All three parts now back in stock, with the main event, #132, in an outstanding FN/VF.
PICTURED: THOR #132 FN/VF £55
*Marvel: Created by Lee & Kirby as Him in Fantastic Four and Thor, the cosmic-powered entity was revamped as the messianic Warlock by Roy Thomas and Gil Kane in the first two issues of Marvel Premiere, before being launched in his own series based on Counter-Earth, a twin world of ours orbiting forever unobserved on the other side of the Sun, in which Warlock met the tragic iteration of the Fantastic Four, the noble and heroic Victor Von Doom, and other ‘dark mirrors’ of the known Marvel characters. Thomas’ Christian allegories, which culminated in Warlock’s ‘crucifixion’ in Hulk #176-178, meant that the character was retired in the wake of controversy and objections from religious groups – but appropriately, he rose from the dead a few years later, at the hands of Jim Starlin! This complete first series, eight issues (mostly not distributed in the UK) is now back in stock in grades averaging Fine. Full details in our catalogue as always.
*Gold Key/Whitman: This oversized oddity proved an eye-opener for us pundits here at 30th Century; all along, we’ve been thinking DC pioneered the tabloid/treasury sized comic book, when it turns out to have been the brainchild of Gold Key/Whitman, who produced this tabloid-sized treat back in 1968! With a cover painting by George Wilson and interior art by Giolitti (long-time artist on Gold Key’s Star Trek), this hews strongly to the narrative of the 1933 film, a done-in-one adaptation, and more importantly, a cracking read, with the page size, for once, perfectly suited to the subject matter! This is a VG copy, page quality okay, but the edges and corners have taken a bit of a beating, as is not uncommon in these oversized items.
PICTURED: KING KONG WHITMAN TREASURY (1968) VG £20 SOLD
*Horror 1940-1959: Confident of the success of their horror showcase, Avon Publishing followed up their 1951 debut issue with this pair of chiller classics, showcasing the works of, among others, Henry Kiefer, Joe Orlando, Manny Stallman, Louis Ravielli, the legendary Joe Kubert and most of all the superlative Wally Wood, who even at this early stage in his career was turning out stunning work, not only on the covers of both these issues, but also with interior illustrations! Among the shockers presented: ‘Honeymoon of Horror’ (aren’t they all?), ‘The Stranger In Studio X’, ‘The Case of the Painted Beasts!’, and ‘The Mirror of Isis!’. These are low to mid-grade copies. Issue #2 is FA, with the covers detached from the body of the book and virtually separated from each other; issue #3, FA/GD is structurally sound but with mild ‘rippling’ and very faint cover image erosion from historical moisture exposure. Despite these flaws, the striking quality of the work remains undiminished.
#2 FA £150 SOLD
#3 FA/GD £150
*Horror/Mystery 1960-1980s: Marvel’s mystery line mushroomed during the horror boom of the 1970s, with several anthology titles converting to showcase ongoing monstrous super-stars and a lot of experimental titles. We have new listings for Arrgh!, Marvel’s horror/comedy anthology released in response to DC’s Plop: Chamber of Darkness from #1 onward, Creatures on the Loose, variously starring Thongor of Lemuria and the Man-Wolf, Dead of Night #11, with the debut of the sinister Scarecrow (no, not the Iron Man villain – nor the Batman villain either!), Fear, with the macabre Man-Thing and Morbius the Living Vampire, Monster of Frankenstein/ Frankenstein’s Monster, from the first issue upward, Giant-Size Chillers from #1, Giant-Size Creatures #1 & only, starring Werewolf By Night and featuring the debut & origin of Tigra the Were-Woman, Supernatural Thrillers, with stunning Steranko cover and Tower of Shadows from #1 (with Steranko art) onward. This selection of chilling tales includes many first issues, many high-grade copies, and a whole lot of items that were never distributed in the United Kingdom, so it’s a treasure trove for fear-fanatics!
GIANT-SIZE CREATURES #1 VF £85
TOWER OF SHADOWS #9 NM £75 SOLD
*Magazines/Books About Vintage US Comics: The focus is very much on the ‘Books’ part of this category, with many weighty tomes about various panelological matters, including out of print or early editions. ‘Berni Wrightson: A Look Back’ is the 1991 retrospective of one of the greatest modern horror comics artists, while other creators in the spotlight this time are Steve Ditko and Golden Age cult figure Fletcher Hanks. Trina Robbins highlights some often overlooked female comics artists of WWII in ‘Babes In Arms’, and ‘Comic Book Implosion’ details one of the nadirs of DC’s long history, when the company nearly dropped its comics line altogether. Several seminal works on the history of comics in general are newly added to our lists – Les Daniels’ ‘Comix: A History of Comic Books In America’, and Aldridge & Perry’s ‘Penguin Book of Comics’. Plus Scott McCloud’s ‘Understanding Comics’, ‘Teen-Age Dope Slaves & Reform School Girls’, and a comprehensive history of the ‘Skywald Horror-Mood’ – all four-colour life is here!
BERNI WRIGHTSON: A LOOK BACK SC VF £35 SOLD
SKYWALD HORROR-MOOD SC NM £40 SOLD
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: Hotspur #257, home of, among others, crippled soccer player ‘Limp-Along Leslie’, island-bound feral child ‘Lonely Larry’ and ‘Zigimar – Master Spy’, offered, in addition to the usual array of thrills, a ‘Wing-Ding Glider’ promising hours of fun until your parents made you throw it away. This copy of Hotspur #257 is VG – would be fine, but there is one long vertical cover crease – and the gift itself is VF, a surprising grade for its age, never assembled or even pressed out of its supporting card.
PICTURED: HOTSPUR #257 VG WITH FREE GIFT VF £35 SOLD
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: A brace of one-off sci-fi specials from two short-lived 2000 AD companion titles! Starlord was a quality sci-fi weekly, featuring innovative strips such as ‘Strontium Dog’, ‘Ro-Busters’, ‘Planet of the Damned’ and ‘Timequake’, and with more colour pages and slicker paper, seemed to be attempting to upgrade the 2000 AD model. Tornado debuted on the then-traditional pulp paper, starring psychic teen delinquent ‘The Mind of Wolfie Smith’, rebellious slave ‘Black Hawk’, and superheroic parody ‘Captain Klep’. Oddly, both Starlord and Tornado lasted precisely 22 issues before being amalgamated back into 2000 AD, but each produced a single Summer Special on high quality stock, both of which are rare and highly sought after. Our Starlord Summer Special is FN, while our Tornado Summer Special, having very small upper and lower spine splits, is GD/VG.
STARLORD SUMMER SPECIAL 1979 FN £30 SOLD
TORNADO SUMMER SPECIAL 1979 GD/VG £22.50 SOLD
*TV & Film Related Comics: The long-lived Polystyle publication, TV Comic, is restocked this week with 52 newly-listed issues, scattered between 1968 to 1976. Big ‘draws’ of the title are TV’s Avengers, Tarzan, and Dr.Who (the latter represented both pre- and post- his ‘sabbatical’ in companion title Countdown/TV Action), but other popular features include Skippy the Bush Kangaroo, Pink Panther, Tom & Jerry and Basil Brush. Boom-Boom!
*Humour Comics: Given the length of time it ran (1937-2015), it’s surprising we don’t see more Dandy issues with free gifts, but three are newly listed here for your enjoyment: 1971’s #1529 and #1530 each feature noise-making devices calculated to delight parents. #1529 is VG (small back cover corner tear) with the Free Gift – the Dandy Thunder-Bang – in VF. The next issue, #1530, is GD, but with the Free Gift – the Red Racketty – still in VF. Moving on to the year 1975, and away from the noise-making theme, issue #1772 brings us two free gifts – or one more complex one, depending how you look at it. The comic itself is FN, but the Free Gifts – ‘Funny Face-Maker’ and a sheet of accompanying cards – are VF, with the ‘Face-Maker’ itself still sealed in its original packaging.
#1529 VG WITH FREE GIFT VF £27.50 SOLD
#1530 GD WITH FREE GIFT VF £25 SOLD
#1772 FN WITH FREE GIFTS VF £30 SOLD
*Girls’ Picture Libraries: The hugely popular Schoolgirls’ Picture Library series is refreshed this week with 56 new issues, none of which were previously listed with us. These done-in-one digest-sized stories, many one-offs but a large number featuring recurring characters such as Zanna of the Jungle, the Peewits, the Rolling Stones, (not those ones) Miss Adventure and the Silent Three! This selection is generally in nice shape, averaging VG – would be an easy Fine, but for rusty staples – but with several legitimate Fine among their number.
PICTURED: SCHOOLGIRLS’ PICTURE LIBRARY #58 GD £15
*Clearance Corner: In with a British comic collection we recently acquired were a batch of 2nd series Hotspur where the condition fell below the normal standard of comic we usually sell. There are 70 of these (no duplicates) where the grade averages Fair, but all are complete and readable. Rather than dispose of them, we thought we’d pass them on at a rock bottom price to someone who can get many hours of enjoyment out of them. Numbers range from #116 (1962) to #739 (1973), 70 issues all for just £25 (plus £8 UK p&p if required). 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:
*Marvel M – S
and in our Books Section:
*Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror
As of the time of writing, these categories are bang up to date, with every item listed available.
*Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror: John Wyndham is perennially popular, so in this update we’ve added a range of titles published under his usual name – Chocky, Consider Her Ways And Others, Jizzle and The Midwich Cuckoos, as well as early works originally published in the name of John Beynon – Sleepers Of Mars, Stowaway To Mars, The Secret People and Wanderers Of Time. In addition there’s The Outward Urge, written in collaboration with Lucas Parkes (also John Wyndham!). As a final inducement The Midwich Cuckoos has a still from Village Of The Damned on its cover.
THE MIDWICH CUCKOOS GD £4
CONSIDER HER WAYS AND OTHERS VG £5
THE OUTWARD URGE GD £4
This is an early Silver Age Collection from an original owner notable for the freshness and vibrancy of the cover colours and page quality; even those with minor reading and handling wear are vastly superior to the majority of comics that have been in circulation since the 1960s. The average grade is well above Fine, with many much nicer.
We’ll be adding selections from this collection for sale here each week across the range of titles represented. These will be over a range of prices each week to suit most budgets, so that all interested collectors have an opportunity to purchase something from this special collection. Each comic will come branded with a special label and certificate of authenticity verifying it as part of the Square Mile Collection. Here’s this week’s:
*Marvel: In the third appearance of the Invincible Iron Man, our hero battled the uncanny powers of Doctor Strange! No, not the Master of the Mystic Arts, but a super-scientist whose nefarious schemes nearly ended Shell-Head’s career before it took off. Smilin’ Stan Lee, however, clearly liked the name, and mentally filed it away for early re-use, inspiring the much more successful and enduring second Doctor Strange, who debuted shortly thereafter. This beautiful copy is one of the gems of the Square Mile Collection, a stunning VF, with bright pages, lustrous cover colour, and only very vestigial lines at the left cover edge, barely visible. A truly remarkable grade from the early days of the Marvel Universe. High resolution images are available on request.
PICTURED: TALES OF SUSPENSE #41 VF p £700
*Marvel: This issue, the Fabulous FF ‘Walk Like Egyptians’, as they face off against Rama-Tut, an ancient dictator who is so much more than he seems. Possessing power and technology far beyond his apparent means, Rama-Tut’s saga unfolded over the course of ensuing decades to disclose a multitude of alternate identities, including a close familial connection with one of the FF themselves – but ssh! spoilers! This copy is quite lovely, with only very slight foxing at the uppermost cover edge – but, unfortunately, at some point a large triangular piece has been removed from the upper left back cover, of course not impacting on the story. Were it not for that, this would easily be a FN+ or better, but taking this flaw into account, we have graded it as VG+.
PICTURED: FANTASTIC FOUR #19 VG+ p £120 SOLD
*DC: We make no secret of the fact that the early Justice League adventures by Fox, Sekowsky and Sachs are among our favourites here at 30th Century, and this week’s DC Square Mile instalment features two of the finest: Issue #16’s “Cavern of Deadly Spheres!” with an unusual twist-ending for the period: and #20’s “The Mystery of Spaceman X!”, combining super-heroics with old-school sci-fi (a field in which author Fox was a veteran). As is characteristic of the Square Mile Collection, these are lovely items for their vintage, the #16 being FN+ with only a few light spine ‘ticks’, and #20 being an even sweeter bright & tight FN/VF.
PICTURED: JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA
#16 FN+ p £65
#20 FN/VF p £80
More from the Square Mile Collection next week!
*DC: One of the most anticipated series of the early 21st Century, Batman: The Dark Knight Strikes Again, also known as DK2, was released by DC Comics commencing 2001 as a three-part Prestige Format mini-series, a sequel to Miller’s groundbreaking 1986 miniseries The Dark Knight Returns. When an aged Bruce Wayne returns from three years in hiding, he realises that he can’t overthrow Lex Luthor’s dictatorial rule over the USA alone, and starts training a cadre of other rebels, including Catgirl, Superman, Wonder Woman, Plastic Man, The Flash and the Atom. Keenly looked forward to, the series caused much controversy on its release. Why? Buy it and find out! This complete set is now available averaging NM-.
PICTURED: THE DARK KNIGHT STRIKES AGAIN #1; SET 1-3 AV NM- £30 SOLD
*DC: Mister Miracle – a.k.a. escapologist Scott Free, son of New Genesis but raised on the hellworld of Apokalips – was the most popular of Kirby’s ‘Fourth World’ series, primarily because of his cast of bizarre characters with positively Dickensian names. Issue #2 saw the debut of one of Scott’s greatest nemeses, the delightfully inappropriately-named Granny Goodness, ruler of an ‘orphanage’ which trained children in the service of Apokalips’ dictator Darkseid. Her treacly manner and speech at odds with her violent and sadistic persona, Granny Goodness is one of the outstanding villains of the Fourth World saga, and her first appearance, in an exceptionally clean and bright VF, is now back in stock.
PICTURED: MISTER MIRACLE #2 VF £75 SOLD
*Marvel: The Silver Surfer’s solo series was marked with exquisite John Buscema artwork, generally acknowledged to be among the finest of his career, and scripts which could be charitably described as ‘a bit long-winded’. Most of the pontificating soliloquies, however, went out of the window in Surfer #14, in which the sky-rider of the spaceways faced off against the Friendly Neighbourhood Spider-Man – and Spidey held his own for a surprisingly long while against the Power Cosmic in this cracking, fast-paced tale! This is a CBCS 8.5 (VF+ equivalent) copy.
PICTURED: SILVER SURFER #14 CBCS 8.5 £185
*Marvel: Introduced in 1972 as the star of his own title, Luke Cage, then ‘Hero For Hire’, was Marvel’s third black superhero (after Black Panther and the Falcon) but the first to hold his own book, and Marvel cross-pollinated Luke early on, with a guest-appearance in their top seller, Spider-Man. In ASM #123 (non-distributed in the UK), Spidey misinterprets Luke’s attempts to get a living wage for his heroics as something more sinister and one of those ‘let’s have the heroes clobber each other’ misunderstandings ensues, doubtless hoping to draw readers over to Luke’s own series. A lovely stand-alone issue by Conway, Kane and Romita, and a lovely condition, bright and flat, tight staples at cover and centrefold, sharp corners.
PICTURED: AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #123 VF+ £60
*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; reminiscent of the then-popular Erich Von Daniken paperbacks, which asserted that mankind’s historical ‘Gods’ were alien visitors, Kirby’s Eternals postulated 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-story, but with the confirmation of an Eternals movie – with Angelina Jolie, Selma Hayek and Game of Thrones star Richard Madden, among others – this series is heating up!
PICTURED: ETERNALS #1 VF £75
*Marvel: X-Men #129 introduced not one, but two, characters who were to become major players in the lives of the X-Men. Kitty Pryde, the young immaterial ingenue, made her debut as a pupil at Xavier’s school and went on to become a central part of the series, eventually becoming the leader of the team, while Emma Frost, White Queen of the Hellfire Club, dedicated her telepathic prowess to the X-Men’s destruction – though that dedication hasn’t prevented her from occasionally joining the group herself, and seducing Cyclops whenever Jean Grey happens to be dead for a while! In the next issue, #130, the world met the Dazzler, whose longevity as a comics heroine has been remarkable, considering her peculiar origins. Conceived as a disco tie-in by Casablanca Records in the late 1970s, Marvel was to create a singing super-heroine and Casablanca was to recruit a live singer to ‘be’ Dazzler. Originally intended to resemble Grace Jones, the design was considerably altered to look like then-hot actress Bo Derek. When the record company withdrew, Marvel were left with an ‘orphaned’ character, who they introduced as a fully-fledged mutant with the ability to transmute sound into light. Both these issues, with the debuts of three long-lasting major players, have been restocked with sharp, bright, tight VF+ copies.
#129 VF+ p £75
#130 VF+ p £50
*Marvel: A huge update to our Marvel listings this week, consisting of the following titles: Avengers (inc. #59 1st Yellowjacket, #195 1st Taskmaster cameo & Giant-Size #4 wedding of the Vision and the Scarlet Witch), Captain America (inc #113 Steranko cover and art), Daredevil (#50 Barry Smith art), Dazzler, Defenders (Giant-Size), Doctor Strange (Giant-Size), Fantastic Four (#66 Warlock prelude), Fantasy Masterpieces, Hulk (inc #140 1st Jarella), Inhumans, Marvel Collectors’ Item Classics, Marvel Feature (#4 start of Ant-Man series), Marvel Two-In-One (inc Annual #2, Thanos saga), Sensational She-Hulk (by John Byrne), Silver Surfer (3rd series #34 with Thanos), Spider-Woman (#37 1st Siryn), Squadron Supreme, Strange Tales (with Brother Voodoo and 1st Golem), Sub-Mariner (inc #57 with Venus by Bill Everett), Super-Villain Team-Up (Inc Giant-Size), Thor (Giant-Size), What If, X-Men (from #13 inc #58 1st Havok, #64 1st Sunfire). Something for every Marvelite! Full details as always in our catalogue.
*Miscellaneous 1940-1959: In 1950, Avon Comics released the one-shot Flying Saucers, tapping into the popular obsession with UFOs with the story of daring explorer Ross Lanning unwittingly unleashing upon the Earth an extraterrestrial invasion which may one day destroy us all! (Spoiler alert: not yet.) Drawn by the superlative Wally Wood; even at this early stage in his career Wood’s art, though less polished than it would become, carries the reader through the chapters of this fast-paced narrative which would have made a great classic sci-fi movie. This is the second printing (dated 1952) of this hard-to-find cult item, in a nice solid VG with the all-black cover background virtually unmarred apart from a few tiny breaks at the staple areas.
PICTURED: FLYING SAUCERS 2ND EDITION (1952) VG £110
*Miscellaneous 1960 Onwards: Yes, much more modern than our usual fare, but we recognise quality when we see it and there’s no denying that Saga, Brian K Vaughan’s and Fiona Staples’ epic space opera/fantasy is a hit series and a modern classic. It depicts a husband and wife, Alana and Marko, from long-warring extraterrestrial races, fleeing authorities from both sides of a galactic war as they struggle to care for their daughter, Hazel, who is born in the beginning of the series and who occasionally narrates the series as an unseen adult. We have the entire first series – currently on hiatus, but announced as returning in due course – from #1 to #54, leaving the readers with a major cliffhanger to be taken up when the eagerly-awaited series 2 commences. Nearly all issues NM.
PICTURED: SAGA #1 VF/NM £125
*Horror/Mystery 1960-1980s: Although dismissed by many as a Swamp Thing rip-off, Man-Thing did actually premiere first, in Savage Tales #1 (May 1971), though Swampy’s debut in House of Secrets #92, dated July that same year, means that it’s one of those judgements that’s too close to call, and the nigh-simultaneous debuts of the duelling muck-monsters may have been mere coincidence. In any event, Man-Thing soon developed a following, as the mute, barely sentient plant-monster shambled his way through a solo series in Fear before gaining his own title. Primary writer Steve Gerber was ahead of his time in addressing ecological and social crises, even during the decade which embraced ‘relevance’, and the stories contained many genuinely horrific moments which skirted the edge of what was acceptable in the Comics-Code ruled years – though, in fairness, Gerber was even more adept at portraying psychological horror than the conventional viscera. This range commences with Manny’s first eponymous issue (also the second-ever appearance of anthropomorphic misanthrope Howard the Duck), and runs through to the final number, #22, including issues of the quarterly Giant-Size Man-Thing (ahem), which featured the Duck’s first solo flights. Grades range from VG to NM, all respectable copies, but with two outstanding issues, neither of which was distributed in the United Kingdom: #1 in a bright and clean VF+ and #3, with the first appearance of the cult character Foolkiller, in a remarkable NM grade, seldom awarded to comics of this vintage.
#1 VF+ £65 SOLD
#3 NM £100 SOLD
*Romance: A miscellany of love this week from the 50s, 60s and 70s: ACG’s Confessions Of The Lovelorn, DC’s Secret Hearts and Young Love, Charlton’s Secret Romance & Teen-Age Love. Valentine’s day is not far off, chaps!
*Teen Humour/Funny Girls: Continuing our massive restock of the Girl Who Would Be Hellcat, we revisit Patsy’s own title for additional numbers between 1950’s #31 and 1954’s 50th issue. Our red-headed heroine, her ‘frenemy’ Hedy Wolfe, and all the gang at Centerville High continue their wacky hi-jinks with guest-features including Mitzi, Nellie, and Wendy Parker. – those funny gals stuck together! This run features much early work from the distinguished Mad Magazine cartoonist Al Jaffee, at the start of his career. Grades range from FA to VG/FN.
PICTURED: PATSY WALKER #31 GD/VG £21
*Tarzan/ERB: A selection of the comic book adaptations of the works of Edgar Rice Burroughs this week, as we add John Carter from Marvel, a Tarzan Dell Giant, Tarzan from DC & Marvel, Tarzan Family, Weird Worlds with tales of Pellucidar and the UK Tarzan Fortnightly.
*Alan Class Reprints: The Alan Class line of reprints is well-loved and well-remembered by a generation of British comics readers, and we’re pleased to be able to add in substantial selections from most of Alan’s ‘Big 6’ titles, beginning, alphabetically, with Astounding Stories. This week, we add 37 issues to our Astounding listing, the vast majority of which are not already in our inventory. From the Alan Class Private Collection, we have copies with Certificates of Authenticity signed by Alan himself, commencing with #5; and new into our ‘general population’ of Astounding are numbers ranging from #84 to #194. The eclectic nature of the reprint schedule means that you’re likely to find Marvel, Charlton or Archie/Mighty super-heroes nestling next to pre-hero Marvel classics by Kirby & Ditko, ACG mystery tales, or a selection of even older and more bizarre material. You never can tell what you’re going to find – though we do have our ‘Rough Guide to Alan Class’ in our Extras section to help you along a little, and, as you might expect, we’ve updated it with new data from this influx of stock!
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: It’s highly unusual to find copies of the old-school Boys’ Adventure story papers with Free Gifts still in place, but we have two in this week; Rover for December 7th 1963 has its gift of ‘three full-colour photos of famous footballers’ rather too firmly attached, in fact, as the glue has, over time, adhered the photos to an interior page. Hopefully someone cleverer and more dextrous than ourselves might be able to separate them. No such problem with Rover for November 7th 1964, mind; the ‘Big Moments of 1964’ (football moments only) album is FN, as is the accompanying comic.
7/12/63 VG WITH GD FREE GIFT £10 SOLD
7/11/64 FN WITH FN FREE GIFT £20 SOLD
*Boys’ Adventure & War Picture Libraries: We’ve been doing an intermittent sequential restock of Combat, the battle-themed picture library published by Micron, for some time now, but we’re taking this opportunity to fill in some gaps, having discovered issues that were overlooked in our previous sweep, between the mid-200’s and the late 300’s. 25 issues newly added in, averaging Fine.
*TV & Film Related Comics: A top-up to several series in this category, primarily built around three titles – Action Force, the UK-retitled ‘GI Joe’ franchise, from #1 (with Free Gift #2!) to #33, Look-In (substantial new issues added from 1986 and 1987), and Thundercats, around a dozen issues between 10 to 71. Backing up the ‘main acts’ are small increments to Doctor Who Magazine, Masters of the Universe and House of Hammer, and a trio of non-Summer Specials – Winter Specials for Star Trek (1975) and Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (1984), and a Spring Special (1987) for Zoids! Full details, of course, in our online catalogue.
*Girls’ Comics: Spellbound hit the newsagents of the UK in 1976, and brought a different complexion to the British girls’ weekly. Rather than the token ‘strange story’ beloved by the regular anthologies, every strip in the comic was devoted to supernatural or science-fiction stories. Stars of the show, of course, were four interplanetary super-heroines, the Supercats, who roamed the universe fighting evil while wearing far too much mascara, courtesy of artist Enrique Badia Romero and his studio. But there were myriad other strips starring willowy wenches in trouble, and schoolgirls facing mysterious enemies. This week, we add Spellbound’s third issue to our lists; the comic itself is Fine, with the original Free Gift – the ‘Black Cat Cameo’ – still unassembled on its original plastic support, but with the envelope in a rather grubby state, so FN overall.
PICTURED: SPELLBOUND #3 FN WITH FN FREE GIFT £75 SOLD
*Girls’ Picture Libraries: Taking a break from the extra-thick magazine format traditionally associated with Summer Specials, our spotlight this week falls on June & School Friend Picture Library, which had its own Holiday Specials. These retained the digest-size height and width, but went extra-thick, with four times the content of a regular Picture Library, over 200 pages per volume! We have four June & School Friend PL Holiday Specials new in this week, commencing with 1969 in VF, backed up by 1971, 1974 and 1975, all in FN.
PICTURED: JUNE (& SCHOOL FRIEND) PICTURE LIBRARY HOLIDAY SPECIAL 1969 VF £25
*Clearance Corner: Who was ‘The Mystery Girl From the East’? What was ‘The Threat to Miss Fontaine’s Romance’? Why were ‘Pets On Trial at St. Kilda’s’? The answer to all these and oh, so many more questions can be found in our latest Clearance Corner! The venerable Schoolgirls’ Own Library of text stories featuring plucky young misses ran for two separate series, the first from 1922 until 1940, and the second from 1946 to 1963. We are offering 2 of the first series and 28 of the second, a total of 30 tales of daring and justice in boarding schools at home and abroad. The earliest two, from 1937, are Poor, but complete, though one is missing its back cover – not affecting the story content. The second series, number between #127 and #245 (publication dates from 1951 to 1957) average VG, generally sound and clean with occasional rusty staples. Just to spell it out once again: these are text stories with illustrations, not comics. This cornucopia of prototypical Girl Power is yours for a mere £25 – UK postage, if required, a further £5.
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:
*Marvel D – L
and in our British section:
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics A – D
and in our Books Section:
As of the time of writing, these categories are bang up to date, with every item listed available.
*Mad Books: Although Mad magazine has recently ceased publication, it leaves a great legacy, particularly in the many books released to showcase its artists and irreverent approach to … well, everything! We’re delighted to have seven of these books, several of which we haven’t listed before: Fighting Mad, Greasy Mad Stuff, Inside Mad, Mad In Orbit, Mad’s Maddest Artist Don Martin Bounces Back!, The Mad Frontier and Three Ring Mad. To paraphrase the shameless blurb used on many Mad books ‘we need money ….your money to make us really popular’, so buy one, or a few, to keep us happy.
INSIDE MAD VG £6
THREE RING MAD VG £10