*Marvel: Strange Tales from the 1960s is sought after for myriad reasons, most often because of the dynamic, cinematic artwork of Jim Steranko, who brought a freshness to spy saga Nick Fury and The Agents of SHIELD which tapped perfectly into the zeitgeist of the era. But that doesn’t apply in this instance. No, the hoo and the hah this time is for the Marie Severin illustrated Doctor Strange co-feature, and more specifically for the Living Tribunal, a cosmic entity whose power outstrips the Watcher and may even match that of Thanos with the Infinity Gauntlet! For years a relatively small part of Marvel’s cosmic tapestry, the Tribunal’s prominence has increased with his (its?) greater involvement in sundry cosmic sagas, to the point where interest in his early appearances is at its keenest. Strange Tales #157, with a last page Living Tribunal cameo, is FN, with light to moderate vertical creasing at spine area. #158, with the first full Tribunal and his first cover appearance, is FN-, still very presentable, with vivid red unfaded cover colour, but a few spine ‘ticks’ and one small (less than 1mm) nick at the lower cover edge. PICTURED: STRANGE TALES #157 FN p £75 SOLD #158 FN- p £90 SOLD
*Marvel: Spanning a decade, these four issues of the Avengers feature highlights in the lengthy career of Marvel’s Mightiest Team. Issue #55 gave us the first full appearance of Ultron, the mechanical menace who would become a nemesis of the team; #87 explored, for the first time at any length, the origin of the African Avenger known as the Black Panther; #112 featured the first, albeit fleeting, glimpse of the mysterious Mantis and #144 bought us the reinvention of former ‘funny girl’ Patsy Walker as the happy-go-lucky Hellcat! These are all presentable mid-grade copies, with no individual flaws not covered by the general grading. PICTURED: AVENGERS #55 FN p £40 #87 FN p £50 #112 VG p £25 #144 VG+ £20
*Marvel: We welcome the King of Wakanda back to our listings at the hands of Jack ‘King’ Kirby’s 1977 series, the first 14 of this 15 issue run. Full of Kirby’s pyrotechnics and brainstorming ideas, which seemed, to be frank, a little barmy at the time, but which hold up surprisingly well by today’s standards.
*Marvel: Nearly 100 issues of Captain America added to our Silver/Bronze stock between #100 (the first issue of series) and #200 (Bicentennial issue). There’s an awful lot of Cap history playing out over these many years, from the start of the series with Kirby at the helm, through the classic Steranko issues and the coming of the Falcon, with Gene Colan taking on the art, later with Steve Englehart writing Cap as he questioned modern America and his place in it, with Steve Rogers giving up the Cap identity to become Nomad, and then resuming as Cap as Kirby returned to see out the first hundred issues in style. Full grading and pricing details in our catalogue as always.
*Marvel: Marvel’s Armoured Avenger takes the spotlight this update, with issues from the first 50 (and okay, just a bit over) newly listed! We open with #12, debut of the ever-captivatin’ Controller, and this selection also includes #33’s premier appearance of the Spymaster, and a guest-villain shot by Princess Python in #50, as well as some less frequent visitors to Tony Stark’s Rogue’s Gallery – Demon-Queen, White Dragon or Raga Son of Fire, anyone? The first couple of issues in this new wave are low grade, but things rapidly improve to VG/FN average, with a couple of FN/VF grades to tickle your tastebuds. 15 new numbers of vintage Iron Man action for your delectation!
*Marvel: 25 newly-listed issues in this update, with the dynamic and kinetic art work of Gene Colan giving life to the Man Without Fear’s acrobatic feats! We open with #72, the debut of Tagak the Leopard Lord, followed up by guest-appearances from Iron Man, Madame Masque and Nick Fury – back when he was Caucasian! We have a nice selection from #81 upwards, when our hero was joined by the Black Widow as his partner in love and crimefighting (‘Tasha even getting co-billing from #92!) and wrap it up for now with issue #100, featuring the debut of Angar the Screamer! Along the way, we encounter all Matt’s major villains – Purple Man, Gladiator, the Ox, Mr. Fear and more – with Hawkeye, the Black Widow’s jealous ex, also popping up to ensure hilarity and consternation! These very affordable mid-grade copies are sure to fly out, so snatch up your Billy Club and swing into action!
*Marvel: A selection from the classic X-Men run by Claremont & Byrne; this update, issues between #120 & #142, with famous stories such as the debut of Alpha Flight, the White Queen & the Black Queen from the Hellfire Club, and the Days Of Future Passed two-parter. The ‘new’ X-Men were never better!
*Miscellaneous 1940-1959: A sextet of science fiction shockers, with new issues of Standard’s Fantastic Worlds #5 and Lost Worlds #5 & #6, all with Alex Toth art, Magazine Enterprises’ Jet powers #3, with our intrepid space hero superbly illustrated by Bob Powell, backed up by Williamson’s ‘Space Ace, Operation Peril #5 from ACG, an adventure anthology including the intrepid ‘Time Travelers’, with art by Ogden Whitney and Leonard Starr, and Fawcett’s Motion Picture Comics #110, a book-length adaptation of the iconic movie ‘When Worlds Collide’ (found under ‘W’ in our catalogue), illustrated by George Evans. These range in grades from FA to VG-, a selection of how our recent ancestors viewed the far-flung future of the 21st century and beyond! PICTURED: JET POWERS #3 GD+ £45 LOST WORLDS #6 VG- £75
*Western: A chunky update to our Marvel 1960s/70s Western stock from the following titles: Ghost Rider (inc #1), Kid Colt, Mighty Marvel Western (#1), Rawhide Kid, Red Wolf (from #1, the series that spanned the Old West to the then-modern day), Two-Gun Kid and Western Gunfighters.
*Vintage Magazine-Sized Comics: In 1968, Marvel made its first stab at distributing to the wider magazine market, rather than the comics readers, in what was a brave but premature attempt to broaden their readership. Spectacular Spider-Man was launched in July 1968, with a 52 page black & white Lee & Romita story, ‘Lo…This Monster!’, plus a further 10 pager by Lee, Lieber & Everett recapping Spidey’s origins. The second issue was released in November that year, with a 58 page tale, ‘The Goblin Lives!’ by Lee & Romita, but despite a spectacular painted cover, the addition of full colour to the interiors, and the star power of Spidey’s greatest foe, it still didn’t ‘take’, and Marvel withdrew from the magazine market for several years. These lovely items are genuinely uncommon in the UK – the first was only spottily distributed, and the second not at all, as far as we know. PICTURED: SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN #1 VG+ £20 SOLD #2 FN/VF £40 SOLD
*Magazines/Books About Vintage US Comics: From the 1970s through to the 1990s, a selection of the ‘zines which defined a generation of UK fandom, including Chain Reaction, Comics Forum, Comics Unlimited, Direct Currents, Fantasy Advertiser, the Panelhouse, and Worlds Collide! These are from the archive (well, disorganized storage boxes!) of 30th Century’s own Will Morgan, who under his ‘maiden name’ of Howard Stangroom, was a prominent contributor to all of these ‘zines and scores more. Subjects of the articles and interviews in these issues include Alan Moore & Dave Gibbons, Sergio Aragones, Moebius, Alex Toth, Hugo Pratt, the Brothers Hernandez, Alex Ross, Gil Kane, Colleeen Doran, and Bryan Talbot. With extremely limited print runs (seldom exceeding 500, and sometimes fewer than 100), these are increasingly rare items, featuring art and text by many people who went on to professional careers.
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: From 1973, Hotspur #729 enticed readers with the cover-featured ‘Iron Teacher’ (a robot educator who spent more time adventuring than teaching), the return of subterranean superhero ‘The Black Sapper’, ‘Cracker Jackson’ (plucky footballing cripple) and more – but as if that excitement wasn’t enough, it also offered a full-colour ‘All-Star Banner’ (tall n’skinny poster, basically) featuring sports players and other media stars of the era. Thrill to Jimmy Savile, the New Seekers, Vince Hill, and – I’m not really helping to sell it here, am I? The comic is VG, and the gift/poster in VF, never having been pinned up. PICTURED: HOTSPUR #729 VG WITH FREE GIFT VF £25 SOLD
*Boys’ Adventure & War Picture Libraries: A new selection of high grade Commando Picture Libraries fresh into stock in the number range from #479 to #529. Almost every issue present and nearly all VF, with just a handful falling lower. There’s no doubt that Commando is the most famous and longest lasting Picture Library of them all (still going strong today, nearly 60 years after issue #1!)
*Humour Comics: Two issues of the D.C. Thomson humour weekly, each still bearing the original Free Gift. 1970’s #261 – also the first issue with the long running strip, ‘Ali’s Baba’ – bears the strangely titled ‘RubaDubDub’ which seems to be, from the cover, a balloon on a string that you… hit people in the face with? Since this one’s still sealed in its original envelope, we can’t know for sure! Continuing the inflatable theme, 1972’s #404 offered readers ‘Punchy Pete – He Stays on His Feet’ – a balloon with a face on it attached to cardboard ‘feet’ which allegedly stopped him falling over when you punched him. Can’t see how, but there we are. From appearances, we suspect the balloon part of this one might not stand attempts at inflation, having possibly lost its elasticity over the years. PICTURED: SPARKY #261 VG WITH FREE GIFT FN £30 SOLD #404 FN WITH FREE GIFT GD £30 SOLD
*Girls’ Comics: Two consecutive 1969 issues of Bunty with Free Gifts, in one of the perennial attempts to revitalise the readership. Issue #615 is in Fine condition, clean and flat, with the ‘Book of Me and My Friends’ gift in generally excellent shape but with sadly rusty staples, so we’ve compromised on FN. Issue #616 is VG – there’s a bit of cover distortion from the Free Gift – the frankly creepy ‘Jolly Dolly’ – having been stored inside its pages for decades – but the gift itself is VF, still in original polythene envelope. PICTURED: BUNTY #615 FN WITH FREE GIFT FN £40 SOLD #616 VG WITH FREE GIFT VF £40 SOLD
*Girls’ Comics: From 1967, Tina, launched in multiple language editions across Europe, was so heavily pre-sold prior to its launch that it could legitimately claim, even on the front of its debut issue, ‘More copies sold than any other girl’s paper in the world!’ With a strong adventure-oriented line-up, curvaceous secret agent ‘Jane Bond’ illustrated by Michael Hubbard, was the lead, and the ‘Space Girls’ (in colour, by Dan Dare illustrator Keith Watson) added a sci-fi touch. Other features which debuted here were ‘Moira – Slave Girl of Rome’, exotic island drama with Brenda Burn and ‘My Chum Yum-Yum’, peripatetic pop group ‘Jackie and the Wild Boys’, western adventuress ‘Glory Gold’ and ‘Barbie’. Yep, that Barbie. After thirty issues, Tina merged with Princess and lived a long and happy life as Princess Tina, but the issues prior to Tina’s ‘coronation’ remain scarce. Our newest copy of the premier issue is an attractive VG, tight staples, unfaded colour, and is backed up by four more pre-Princess numbers – #6, #16, #22 and #23. PICTURED: TINA #1 VG £30
*Comic Strip Books: We’re very pleased to offer three books collecting classic Stan Lee Marvel stories. Doctor Strange has a Frank Brunner cover and Steve Ditko interior art, reprinting the first 18 original Doctor Strange stories from Strange Tales. The Amazing Spider-Man has Ditko art throughout and reprints the Web-slinger’s debut from Amazing Fantasy #15 and stories from Amazing Spider-Man #1 – 6. Finally, The Fantastic Four has Jack Kirby interior art and reprints Fantastic Four #1 – 6. All three have introductions from Stan Lee and are in VG/FN condition; full colour throughout. PICTURED: DOCTOR STRANGE VG/FN £18 SOLD THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN VG/FN £10 SOLD THE FANTASTIC FOUR VG/FN £10 SOLD
*Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror: Short story collections are always popular, so we’ve added more than a dozen examples of collections by some of the best SF authors. James Blish contributes Galactic Cluster, James Gunn Future Imperfect and Clifford Simak provides Aliens For Neighbours. Thera are three from John Brunner (No Future In It, Now Then and Out Of My Mind), four from Keith Laumer (Nine By Laumer, Galactic Diplomat, Retief: Emissary To The Stars and Retief Of The CDT) and six from Robert Silverberg (Born With The Dead, Earth’s Other Shadow, Needle In A Timestack, The Best Of Robert Silverberg, To Worlds Beyond and Unfamiliar Territory). With reviews including ‘Blish’s starkly realistic stories mirror the perils of the world of the future .. – where scientists can master the intricacies of space travel … yet cannot control man’s worst instincts’ (Galactic Cluster), ‘9 dazzling short stories’ (Nine By Laumer), ‘rich in that engaging ingenuity which Simak’s innumerable fans know so well’ (Aliens For Neighbours) and a brilliantly grudging endorsement of Robert Silverberg from Isaac Asimov (To Worlds Beyond), these all come highly recommended. PICTURED: JOHN BRUNNER NOW THEN VG £4 KEITH LAUMER RETIEF: EMISSARY TO THE STARS VG £5 ROBERT SILVERBERG TO WORLDS BEYOND VG/FN £7 CLIFFORD D SIMAK ALIENS FOR NEIGHBOURS VG £7
*Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror: Here we are with three novels (Pstalemate, The Eleventh Commandment and The Sky Is Falling) and a collection of short stories (Mortals And Monsters), by the highly regarded author Lester Del Rey (in real life the less fanciful Leonard Knapp). In addition we have the first Magabook published by Galaxy, consisting of The Sky Is Falling and Badge Of Infamy, with Virgil Finlay cover art. PICTURED: THE ELEVENTH COMMANDMENT VG/FN £6 THE SKY IS FALLING / BADGE OF INFAMY GD £5 SOLD
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: The premier appearance of one of Marvel’s iconic heroes and one of the gems from the Square Mile Collection: in the pages of Tales of Suspense #39, millionaire genius Tony Stark was abducted by Reds behind the Bamboo Curtain (it was a different time…) and forced to manufacture advanced weapons to crush capitalism. Our intrepid hero 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 CGC 6.0 Blue Label (no restoration), a Fine equivalent. PICTURED: TALES OF SUSPENSE #39 CGC 6.0 FN £6000 SOLD
*Marvel: A nice consecutive run of Spidey this update from Amazing Spider-Man #103 to #120. THis run starts off with an adventure with Kraven the Hunter in the Hidden Land (#103-104), and amongst others takes in a guest shot by Dr. Strange (#109), the debut of the Gibbon (#110), the Hammerhead/Doc Ock gang war (#113-115) and finishes up with a two-part tussle with the Hulk in #119-120. Many high grade copies (VF or better) included; full details as always in our catalogue.
*DC: The Joker’s former lover, Harley Quinn, became the breakout DC character of the late 20th Century, in large part owing to this exquisite one-shot, written by her creator Paul Dini and illustrated by Bruce Timm. Harley’s second comic-book appearance, following her debut in Batman Adventures #12, Mad Love was a huge hit, defining the Harley/Joker relationship, establishing her origin and backstory for myriad subsequent appearances, (including the recent ‘Birds of Prey’ film) and consolidating her stardom. It’s also a cracking read, even for those of us who think Harl’s become a bit overplayed in later years. We have the first and second printings in stock; the first printing, released as a ‘thick comic’, is VF-, having entirely avoided the spine ticks and splits that the fragile cover stock tends to acquire over time; the second printing, in sturdier squarebound Prestige Format, is NM. PICTURED: BATMAN ADVENTURES MAD LOVE 1ST PRINTING VF- p £50 2ND PRINTING (PRESTIGE FORMAT) NM £75
*DC: When DC decided to spotlight their magical characters in a four issue Prestige Format mini-series, negotiations with the original writer, J.M. DeMatteis, happily fell through. We say ‘happily’ because then-newcomer Neil Gaiman got the gig, and created an everyman character, young Timothy Hunter, who over the course of four successive volumes, each drawn by an A List artist – John Bolton, Scott Hampton, Charles Vess and Paul Johnson) was mentored by, in succession, the Phantom Stranger, John Constantine, Doctor Occult and Mister E. Along the way, multiple other magic-based characters appeared, and the result was a dense and richly layered fantasy, as Tim decides whether to embrace or defy his destiny to be the world’s greatest magician. This is available as a complete set, in VF/NM condition. PICTURED: BOOKS OF MAGIC #1 VF/NM; COMPLETE SET #1-4 AV. VF/NM £30 SOLD
*DC: A selection of around 30 battered Silver Age beauties all dating from between January and June 1960, virtually all of which were not previously represented in our lists. These, shall we say, well-read copies range from Poor to Very Good, but all are complete, readable and eminently affordable vintage items. Titles restocked include Action Comics (from #263, origin of the Bizarro World!), Adventure from #271, Blackhawk from #144, Detective from #277, House of Mystery from #94, House of Secrets (with supernatural crusader Mark Merlin) from #30, My Greatest Adventure from #41, Mystery In Space (with the superlative Adam Strange) from #58, Sgt. Bilko’s Private Doberman (pardon?), Showcase #25 (early Rip Hunter with glorious Kubert art), Strange Adventures from #114 (First Star Hawkins!), Superboy from #80 (Supergirl team-up!), Tales of the Unexpected (starring Space Ranger) from #46, and World’s Finest from #108. Grab yourselves some cheap and easy slices of nostalgia from the earliest days of distribution in the UK!
*DC/Marvel: A light top-up to our stocks of DC/Marvel co-produced material, featuring the two Spider-Boy Amalgam issues ands a complete 4 issue run of DC/Marvel All Access plus issues from JLA/Avengers and Unlimited Access.
*Marvel: Many folks say – with justification – that Felicia Hardy, the Black Cat, was a Suspiciously Similar Substitute for DC’s Catwoman, created to give Spider-Man a ‘beloved enemy’ vibe and increase the romantic tension in the series. Probably true; but nevertheless, the Black Cat rapidly stepped away from her derivative roots, primarily owing to her low level probability manipulation – subconsciously causing ‘bad luck’ for people who opposed her – and the fact that although she’s frequently done heroic and noble things, she’s never completely shed her criminal ways. This copy of the Black Cat’s debut in Amazing Spider-Man #194 comes from the non-distributed ‘wilderness years’, so there are no pence variants of this issue. This is a CGC Blue Label (no restoration) graded 9.4 NM; comes complete with Mark Jeweler’s Insert. PICTURED: AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #194 CGC 9.4 NM £300 SOLD
*Marvel: While we yield to no one in our regard for Steve Ditko as the ‘proper’ Spider-Man artist, we have to concede that John Romita did a cracking job when he took over, redefining the character for the Swingin’ Sixties – and Jazzy Johnny’s background as a romance artist certainly didn’t hurt when it came to drawing Peter Parker’s own ‘Betty & Veronica’, Gwen and Mary Jane! Issue #39 marked Romita’s first as illustrator, and he dove right in, making the character his own, and creating a cover scene which is almost as often ‘homaged’ as his famous Spidey #50 cover! #39 and #40 constituted a two-part confrontation with the Green Goblin and firmly established Romita’s tenure on the title. Both parts of this epic are back in stock; #39 is a VG+ copy, with excellent cover colour and minimal edge wear, only prevented from a higher grade by a Book Centre Stamp on the cover background, just above our trussed-up hero. #40 is VG+ p, light corner and edge wear and a pen slash through the cover price box, but again unmarred cover scene with vivid colour. PICTURED: AMAZING SPIDER_MAN #39 VG+ £90 #40 VG+ p £70
*Marvel: So, what do you do when one cuddly brain-sucking symbiote just isn’t enough? Well, the House of Recycled Ideas came up with letting it spawn (not ‘Spawn’!) and thus was born Carnage, offspring of Venom, who rapidly metastasised into one of the MU’s most popular villains. Following the huge success of the recent Venom movie, Carnage has been set up as the Big Bad of the forthcoming ‘Venom 2’, so jump in now for this bright & shiny VF/NM pence copy! PICTURED: AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #361 VF/NM p £65
*Marvel: In 1970, Marvel tried something risky and different, quite aside from their familiar super-hero stable; at the urging of writer Roy Thomas, they put out a sword & sorcery title adapting the Robert E. Howard stories of Conan the Barbarian, and, bucking the trend, it was a smash hit – thanks in no small part to the illustration of Barry (not-yet-Windsor) Smith, a talented young British artist who gave the most famous Cimmerian of all grace and feral power, filling Conan’s world with mystery, menace and beauty as monsters and maidens competed for our hero’s attentions. Another fantasy comics star made her debut in Conan #23 (Feb 1973), when Conan encountered Red Sonja, a female brigand and adventurer who was every bit his equal – even though Marvel missed a step by not cover-featuring her! Sonja rapidly caught the public’s imagination and spun off into her own series. More than four decades later, both continue their comic book careers today, Conan back in the Bullpen after a long sojourn at Dark Horse, and Sonja currently published by Dynamite Comics. Our newest Conan #1 is a FN cents copy, vivid unbroken cover colour, superior interior pages, and only very minor wear at spine and corners, not affecting the cover image. Conan #23 is a FN/VF pence copy, with light creasing at upper and lower right cover corners. PICTURED: CONAN #1 FN £150 #23 FN/VF p £55
*Marvel: Okay, this is an oddity; the 1970s revival of Strange Tales restarted with the ‘classic’ numbering of #169, and featured Brother Voodoo, a peculiar attempt at a heroic practitioner of, duh, voodoo, intended to tap into both the ‘blaxploitation’ and horror crazes of the time. Len Wein and Gene Colan were the creators, so it was competently done, but a fundamental misunderstanding of the religion of voodoo, combined with objections to the depiction of non-Christian religion and severe criticism about the portrayal of non-white characters, meant that the heroic sojourn of Jericho Drumm, intermittently possessed by the ghost of his deceased twin Daniel, stuttered to a halt within five issues, to be replaced by the hastily thrown-together Golem. That might have been it for this Bronze Age update of Quality’s old Captain Triumph (look it up if you don’t get the reference), but for the zeal of fan-turned pro writers, who brought the character back from oblivion. He’s been a Skrull. he’s been the Scarlet Witch (kind of) and now he’s Doctor Voodoo, Sorcerer Supreme (well, one of them) of the Marvel Universe! This VG copy of an origin issue never distributed in the UK has very slight ‘chipping’ at upper right and left cover corners, but is otherwise very sound and presentable. PICTURED: STRANGE TALES #169 VG £65 SOLD
*Marvel: One of Marvel’s long-running and more beloved villains, Crusher Creel, the Absorbing Man, premiered in this issue, with his ability to absorb and replicate the properties of any person, object or substance causing quite a headache for our favourite Thunder God! Despite his surly mien, many folks feel that Crusher Creel is, to quote the Shangri-Las, ‘Good-bad, but not evil‘, and he has quite the fan-base, especially in latter decades since he married Titania. This first appearance of an enduring villain is a classy Fine, pence stamp in upper corner, minimal edge wear, unfaded red background, tight corners. PICTURED: JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY #114 FN p £75
*Marvel: Following the debut of the ‘New’ X-Men in Giant-Size X-Men #1, the revamped international team took over the moribund reprint series with #94 and galvanized a whole new generation of readers. #96 was the first new issue released in the UK, and it caused us all in the Old Country to sit up and pay attention, not least because it featured the cuddliest demon ever, and the premier of long-running supporting character (and love interest for Professor X) Moira MacTaggert, a brilliant scientist who also happened to be a dab hand with firearms. PICTURED: X-MEN #96 VF- p £45
*Marvel: One of the phenomena of the last decade of the 20th Century was Jim Starlin’s Infinity Gauntlet, which spawned many crossovers and two direct sequels. This is the second such sequel, third series in the ‘Infinity Trinity’, Infinity Crusade, in which ‘The Goddess’ separated the more devout of the Marvel Heroes into a super-powered jihad, a move surely calculated to offend both the pious and the pagan alike!. The ‘Infinity’ series have been hugely popular ever since their inception, but with Thanos and the Infinity Gauntlet at the centre of the Avengers/Guardians of the Galaxy cinematic franchise, demand for them is at its height. PICTURED: INFINITY CRUSADE #4 NM; COMPLETE SET OF #1-6 NM £35 SOLD
*Marvel: Early issues of the original Star Wars series this week available in high grade, issues #2-6 (mostly pence copies). Always popular, the passion for Star Wars never seems to diminish! Full details in our catalogue.
*Horror 1940-1959: More from Avon’s much sought after horror title, this time an unbroken run from #8 through to #13, featuring artwork by E. Everett Kinstler, Harry Lazarus, Gene Fawcette, Sid Check, Alvin Hollingsworth and a promising youngster named Joe Kubert! Of particular interest is issue #12, which breaks away from the short-story anthology format to offer a book-length adaptation of Bram Stoker’s ‘Dracula’ – the first appearance, we believe, of the Lord of the Vampires in comics form! With the exception of #12, which is a very presentable GD+, these are mid to low grade copies, averaging FA+, suffering from various combinations of browning, tears, and watermarking, but all complete, eminently readable and reasonably affordable copies of a hotly sought pioneering series. PICTURED: EERIE #8 FA £90 Piece out of upper back cover, front cover top edge staining and wear SOLD #9 FA £90 Off top staple, watermarked at top edge #10 FA+ £75 Two long taped back cover tears SOLD #11 FA £70 3″ diagonal front cover tear from upper left, smaller tear at upper staple area #12 GD+ £120 #13 FA/GD £90 Lower right front cover corner off, long lower spine split
*Horror/Mystery 1960-1980s: Two key issues for the fantasy/barbarian sub-genre at Marvel appeared not in their mainstream super-hero titles, but in their horror/mystery line: Chamber of Darkness #4 featured a Roy Thomas/Barry Smith created story – unheralded on the cover – featuring ‘Starr the Slayer’, a barbarian adventurer who was Conan in all but name; this is the story which reputedly persuaded Stan Lee to green-light the ongoing Conan series, as it showed how the hero could be presented. A little over a year later, Marvel followed up with another Robert E. Howard barbarian hero, Kull the Conqueror, who premiered in a short story in Creatures On The Loose #10 before spinning off into his own ongoing series. Both of these ‘pilot episodes’ are now back in stock, cents copies, in attractive VF grade, with bright, lustrous cover colour and tight firm staples. PICTURED: CHAMBER OF DARKNESS #4 VF £55 SOLD CREATURES ON THE LOOSE #10 VF £55 SOLD
*Classics Illustrated: It’s the turn of the British version of Classics Illustrated this update, with 50 additions to our stocks, ranging from #8 (the Odyssey) to #144 (The Queen’s Necklace). Along the way, less common issues include a first printing of #13 (Dr. Jekyll & Mr Hyde), #32 (Lorna Doone with Matt Baker art), #40 (Benjamin Franklin), #73 (The Black Tulip with original British cover), #124 (The War Of The Worlds), #128 (Wuthering Heights — one of the very few written by a woman!) & #130 (The Woman In White). Also included are a number of World Illustrated, including the UK original #529 (Great Escapes). Full publication data is as always given in our catalogue.
*Memorabilia & Esoterica: Two oddities straying into the shop here, with a 1975 Power Records ‘mini LP’, pitting Spider-Man against the ‘Bells of Doom!’ While the Power Record and Comic sets are not unfamiliar, this is just the vinyl record, and appears to have been released without an accompanying comic. It’s NM-, still in its original shrinkwrap, but with light creasing to the sleeve at the corners. Backing that up, we have a ‘Spider-Man Keepsake Collection’ of oversized trading cards, including a full colour mini-press sheet and a ‘Prism’ card – whatever that means! We’d give you more details of this set (featuring Venom and Carnage as well as our hero), but it’s still sealed, NM in its original envelope, so we’re unable to oblige. PICTURED: AMAZING SPIDER-MAN BELLS OF DOOM VINYL RECORD NM- £10 AMAZING SPIDER-MAN KEEPSAKE COLLECTION CARD SET NM £10
*Power Comics: The earlier run of Odhams’ Smash, before it got taken over by IPC/Fleetway, is always in demand, with its eclectic line-up – traditional humour strips such as ‘The Swots and the Blots’, home-grown adventure strips like ‘Brian’s Brain’ and ‘Rubberman’, Marvel super-hero reprints such as ‘Daredevil’, and the front-billed ‘Batman’ newspaper strip. But the Free Gifts, generally requiring some assembly, almost never survive in good shape, so this pair from 1968 are genuine rarities; #108 has a ‘Swing-Wing Fighter’ VF, bundled in its original rubber band (exercise caution when handling!), while #109 has a ‘Secret Coder’ FN/VF, not punched out of its original supporting card. Comics are an exceptional Fine. PICTURED: SMASH #108 FN WITH FREE GIFT VF £60 SOLD #109 FN WITH FREE GIFT FN/VF £60 SOLD
*Boys’ Adventure & War Comics: This significant update, from #4 onward, refreshes our depleted stocks of 2000 AD’s first couple of years. Running from #4 to #100, with only a handful of gaps, this selection encompasses the debuts of long-running series ‘Tharg’s Future-Shocks’ and ‘Robo-Hunter’, as well as the first amalgamated issue of 2000 AD and Star-Lord, in which ‘Ro-Busters’ and ‘Strontium Dog’ joined the lineup, for much lengthier careers than in their original home. The finest British comics talents on display – Ian Gibson, Dave Gibbons, Kevin O’Neill, and a Bonanza of Brian Bolland, including his work on the epic ‘Cursed Earth’ saga! Tharg says, ‘Spend Your Galactic Groats now, Earthlets!’ PICTURED: 2000 AD #4 FN £15 SOLD
*Humour Comics: The large format semi-tabloid Beezer (home to ‘Ginger’, ‘Baby Crockett’ and ‘Pop, Dick & Harry’ among scores of others) doesn’t tend to wear well over time, so we’re particularly chuffed to have a Free Gift issue from 1964 in good shape; #457 17/10/1964 is VG, with the Free Gift – an inflatable noisemaker dubbed the ‘Bubble & Squeak’ – in FN. The gift actually looks VF, but we suspect the rubber/plastic in the inflatable component has long since ‘perished’, so in an excess of caution, we’re calling it Fine. PICTURED: BEEZER #457 VG WITH FREE GIFT FN £35 SOLD
*Girls’ Comics: From 1960 to 1967, Princess weekly delighted a generation of proper young ladies, with its pretention to being a ‘magazine’ – photo-covers and lots of educational, historical and how-to features. But the comic strips kept the readers coming back for more, including ‘Alona the Wild One’, ‘The Happy Days’ and – in this selection – the very peculiar ‘Alice In Spaceland’. We have three Free Gift issues newly stocked. 10th October 1964 is the first ‘merger’ issue with the fallen Girl, the distaff Eagle which bequeathed ‘Belle and Mamie’ and ‘Lettice’ among others, to the combo title. This bribed new readers with a ‘Sparkling Princess Ring’, which is still sealed in its original envelope. When it rebranded the following year as ‘The New Princess Magazine’, the October 16th issue offered a ‘Princess Hair Band’; sadly, though the envelope is intact, the gift itself has broken into three pieces through careless handling over time. But we’re back on happier ground with the following issue, 23rd October, with the ‘Aurora Ring’ pristine in original envelope. PICTURED: PRINCESS 10/10/64 VG/FN WITH FREE GIFT VF £60 SOLD 16/10/65 VG WITH FREE GIFT PR £15 SOLD 23/10/65 VG WITH FREE GIFT VF £40 SOLD
*Girls’ Picture Libraries: While the 1954 launched True Life Library is generally categorized as a romance title, things ran a little deeper than that. Certainly, romantic complications abounded, but said complications frequently included fraud, blackmail, robbery, abduction, infidelity, accusations of murder or the unwelcome popping-up of discarded spouses or offspring, to give readers a film noir frisson alongside their moonlight & roses. Titles such as ‘The Man She Feared’, ‘Gaol Girl’, ‘Beautiful Schemer’ and ‘Her Sister’s Man’ were advertised by lurid painted covers that wouldn’t have looked out of place on a movie marquee. We have 53 issues of True Life added to our stock, commencing with the second issue, and all within the first 100 numbers. Condition averages Good – sadly, staple rust does generally preclude a higher grade, though all are otherwise clean and sound. PICTURED: TRUE LIFE LIBRARY #2 GD £12 #17 VG £9
*Magazines/Books About Vintage UK Comics: We don’t get to update this section as often as we’d like, and seldom with this many diverse items. In terms of books, we open with ‘Doctor Who: Timeview’, a paperback collection of Frank Bellamy’s illustrations of the famous Time Lord. The hardcover ‘Golden Years of Adventure Stories’ hearkens back to the story papers of the past such as Rover and Wizard, but nudges forward to take in Victor also. ‘The Man Who Drew Tomorrow’ details how Frank Hampson conceived and executed the legendary strip Dan Dare, with a font of information about Eagle and its stablemates. ‘Masters of Fun and Thrills’ is a paperback celebration of classic UK comic artists and ‘True Brit’, in the wake of the 2000 AD phenomenon, spotlights 21 of the field’s greatest artists, vintage and modern. In magazines, we open with The Illustrated Comic Journal (no relation to the similarly-named American publication) from 1976, devoted to all things British and panelological. Comics 101, also from 1976, is the souvenir programme from a convention devoted to UK comics; among many contributing artists are otherwise unseen pieces from Raymond Briggs, Jim Baikie, Geoff Campion, Ron Embleton, The Silent Three artist Evelyn Flinders, and other legendary names. We have a set of four issues of the Association of Comic Enthusiast’s newsletter, from circa 1980, and 1970’s Ultima Thule, with Embleton and Hampson artwork. PICTURED: TRUE BRIT NM £25
On a regular cycle, we sweep through our entire stock to delete sold items and keep our listing as up to date as possible. We’ve just finished deleting sold items from the following file in our British section *Boys’ Adventure & War Comics V – Z
As of the time of writing, this file is bang up to date, with every item listed available.
*Crime, Spies & Sleaze: Just the heading should be enough for you to deduce that the author concerned is Agatha Christie with her most famous detectives. A Murder Is Announced is a Miss Marple novel, and Miss Marple’s Final Cases is, as you might expect, a collection of short stories. The Mystery Of The Blue Train puts Poirot’s little grey cells to work, and The Secret Adversary introduces Tommy and Tuppence to sleuthing. PICTURED: A MURDER IS ANNOUNCED GD/VG £5
*Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror: Poul Anderson may well have been inspired by Ian Fleming’s James Bond, but even Bond’s foray into space in Moonraker wouldn’t have prepared him for the adventures of Dominic Flandry, interstellar trouble-shooter. We’ve got four books, two collections, Agent Of The Terran Empire and Flandry Of Terra, both with wraparound covers by Bob Fowke and two novels, A Knight Of Ghosts And Shadows and Ensign Flandry. PICTURED: AGENT OF THE TERRAN EMPIRE VG £3.50
On a regular cycle, we sweep through our entire stock to delete sold items and keep our listing as up to date as possible. We’ve just finished deleting sold items from the following file in our American section: *Marvel D – L
As of the time of writing, this file is bang up to date, with every item listed available.