BY MATT TUCK
Marvel Studios outdid itself with announcements this week, and it sent buyers scrambling to eBay and beyond for those key Sinister Six and Werewolf by Night keys in particular. Check out the rest of the 10 fastest trending issues on the market with the updated data you need to get the best deals.
10. BATMAN #357
Titans is proving to be a hit for the DCEU, HBO Max, and TNT. That is great news for the slate of upcoming DC live-action shows on the streaming service. Titans’ success proves to the WarnerMedia executives that there is a market for the R-rated shows and helps encourage them to loosen the purse strings for a show like the Green Lantern Corps.
Out of all the happenings in this season’s Titans, what is garnering the most attention is Jason Todd’s progression from Robin into Red Hood (does that make him Robin Hood?). That has also spiked interest in Jason/Red Hood’s key issues, starting with his first appearance in Batman #357.
This has been a huge year for the Batman #357 fair market values. Before 2021, the previous record was $900 from last year. Since March 15, six copies have reached or exceeded the $1k mark. On August 15, the record was demolished with a $1,550 sale. More recently, another 9.8 sold for $1,100 on August 19. Meanwhile, the raw copies are easily hitting the triple figures for higher grades.
With this much attention on Batman #357 for Red Hood debuting on Titans, wait for the day Jason Todd is in a live-action movie to see things really set a blistering pace.
9. AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #545 MEPHISTO VARIANT
From day one, Spider-Man: No Way Home has been looking a lot like “One More Day.” With Peter needing to reset the timeline after the events of Far From Home, the logical assumption was that the plot would follow OMD, and that has had collectors eying ASM #544-545 for the past year.
Now that the NWH trailer has dropped, there has been a massive surge in sales with all the covers of both issues, particularly the Marko Djurdjevic Mephisto variant. For a raw copy, that comic is currently selling for about $40 when it was a $10-$20 comic before the trailer dropped.
On the graded side of collecting, sales for the slabbed copies have been sparse. The most recent graded copy sale was on August 24 when a 9.8 sold for $199.
8. TALES OF THE TEEN TITANS #44
Jason Todd isn’t the only Titan getting a piece of the spotlight. Dick Grayson’s Robin has been the protagonist from the beginning of the show. Like Jason, audiences were waiting with baited breath for Dick to evolve into Nightwing, which is finally happening in the current season. That has boosted the market for those Nightwing keys. At the top of that list is his first appearance in his new, disco-inspired costume in Tales of the Teen Titans #44.
At the first of the month, the 9.8 had been setting record numbers with sales of $780 and $850. Since then, this issue has retained its popularity, but the values have plateaued in the $500-$600 range for the most part. The better value is the 9.6. These two grades are virtually identical to the naked eye, but the prices are miles apart with the latter staying in the $250 range.
7. MARVEL SPOTLIGHT #5
Rumors, rumors, and more rumors. That is what has made those early Ghost Rider keys such hot commodities all year. From a cancelled Hulu series to the potential of a return to the motorcycle in the MCU, fans have had plenty to get them excited about the Rider’s future.
The latest news from the Ghost Rider front coincides with one of his most popular teams, the Midnight Sons. Rather, the Midnight Suns, in this case.
In recent days, Marvel revealed its newest role-playing video game, Midnight Suns. That has fans thinking the supernatural Avengers could be on their way to the MCU with Ghost Rider leading the charge.
There has been a high volume of sales, both graded and raw, for MS #5, but the upper grades are not necessarily seeing record-breaking prices. Not that that is a bad thing, at least for buyers. Take the 7.0. After reaching $4,180 in May, the FMV has gradually settled into the $2,500 range afterwards. It is picking back up following a $2,950 sale on August 23, which is promising for sellers now that the game news is out.
6. MARVEL SPOTLIGHT #2
Jake Gomez may be the live-action Werewolf by Night, but this will always be at the top of the list for many WBN fans. It all started in this issue of Marvel Spotlight, a title that served as a testing ground for many new characters and concepts. The Werewolf proved a hit with fans, and he would star in several issues of Spotlight before getting his own solo title.
Last week’s news sparked a massive $14,001 sale of a 9.6 on August 24, though that is suspicious considering that it had never sold for more than $4,400 before. With such a huge price jump, it should raise eyebrows across the collecting community. A bit more reasonable is the 9.4, which has not sold for less than $4k since March.
5. AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #3
“Hello, Peter.” With just two words, Alfred Molina has set the MCU fandom on fire.
For years, it seemed Doctor Octopus was not meant for the live-action Marvel. Kevin Feige and company appeared adverse to rehashing old characters and plots from other franchises, and that would include Otto Octavius. Then came the Molina casting, but it paled in comparison to his MCU debut in the No Way Home trailer. Now collectors, particularly those with deep pockets, are on the hunt for his first appearance in ASM #3.
Considering this was the third ASM ever published, this comic already had plenty of reasons to be expensive. Factoring in the issue’s mighty price tag, the fact that we are seeing a high number of sales speaks volumes about ASM #3’s surge in popularity. Just this month, a 5.0 bordered on tying the record high with a sale of $5,488.
Just two days ago, a restored 1.0 brought $1k. A 2.5 didn’t set any new records, but its $2,827 price from August 24 was nonetheless impressive. There was also a raw copy advertised with an approximate grade of 0.5 that fetched $1,530.
4. OBLIVION SONG #1
Last week’s movie announcement kicked in the afterburners for Oblivion Song #1. It’s not like this was a hidden gem from day one. Having Robert Kirkman’s name on the cover supplied it with instant collecting credibility, and it was a fast sellout because of the live-action potential. After all, Kirkman is the chairman of Skybound Entertainment, and he has mainstream recognition thanks to The Walking Dead and Invincible. Suffice to say, anything he has or will create jumps to the front of the line in terms of possible movie deals.
Since August 24, sales for the 9.8 standard edition have been blistering the market. There have been dozens of graded sales, and the values are quickly pushing $300. Only three days ago, one hit a new record high of $260. Then there is the collector’s edition, and it has now crossed the $1k threshold after a $1,130 sale on August 24.
3. AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #14
Since Marvel and Sony had teased Alfred Molina and Jamie Foxx’s returns to the Spider-Verse, the real surprise in the No Way Home trailer was the Green Goblin. Oft rumored as having been spotted on the set, Willem Dafoe was like the Bigfoot of the comic world; several people claimed to see him, but no one could provide any indisputable evidence. When the trailer dropped and we saw the pumpkin bomb and heard that unmistakable laugh, Goblin fans lost their collective minds.
It should not come as a surprise that the Goblin is already stealing the spotlight. As much as Spidey fans love Doctor Octopus, Norman Osborn and the Green Goblin remain the most iconic of Spider-Man’s rogue’s gallery. Dafoe’s performances in both Spider-Man and Spider-Man 2 hold dear places in the hearts of many, and before now, it seemed that we would never again see him share the screen with any version of Peter Parker. Then came last week’s trailer, which rewrote the rules for characters past, present, and future.
Even before the trailer dropped, this issue was getting a bump. A 1.8 earned $1,550 on August 22, followed by a 2.0 selling for $2k just yesterday. This past Tuesday saw a 3.0 reach a record-high $2,450 in the NWH tidal wave.
2. WEREWOLF BY NIGHT #1 (2020)
The rumor mill has been churning out plenty of Werewolf by Night speculation virtually all year. The latest indication is that he will appear next year in a Halloween Special on Disney+. There also is word that Marvel is looking to cast a Latino actor for the starring role. That leads to speculation that Jake Gomez will be the MCU’s superhero werewolf.
The character debuted in last year’s Werewolf by Night #1. In this version, he is a member of the Hopi Nation, and his family is cursed with lycanthropy. Whether or not this will be the MCU’s WBN has yet to be confirmed, but it is hard to imagine this not coming to fruition. That has driven sales to records for sales volume and FMV.
Covers A & B have been the favorites over the past week, with raw copies for each currently selling in the $30-$40 range. Bear in mind that these were generally bringing $5-$10 up to August 25. A day later, the market exploded to what we are seeing today.
As for graded copies, the standard edition 9.8 sold for a record $350 on Saturday, and the Ploog variant is now a $745 comic.
1. AMAZING SPIDER-MAN ANNUAL #1
No Way Home is the talk of the internet, especially within the comic book community. The main reason for all the commotion is the array of Sony-verse characters making their ways into the MCU. It finally brings together the Sinister Six, which Sony began teasing with Amazing Spider-Man 2. Along with featuring direct allusions to the full cast of characters, Sony was reportedly developing a Sinister Six feature film before ASM 2 fell flat with audiences. Now it would seem the studio is finally getting its change in the joint venture with Marvel Studios.
Whether or not the group pulls together and is officially dubbed the Sinister Six, there is no question what the MCU is putting together. In a year packed with Marvel shows and movies, the Multiversal Sinister Six has catapulted No Way Home above and beyond everything else as far as anticipation. That directly translates to the values for the villainous team’s first appearance in ASM Annual #1.
The low grades tell the story for this comic’s volcanic eruption. A 1.0 - that’s right, a 1.0 - sold for $1,218 on August 23. A year ago, that grade averaged $345. Only a day after that 1.0 cracked the $1,200 mark, a 1.5 hit $1,350. Last Sunday, a 2.5 exceeded $1,700.
So far this month, the highest grade that has sold has been the 7.0, which brought $4,150 on August 13. With the post-trailer prices sweeping the market, imagine what that price tag would have been if it had hit eBay six days ago.
Matt Tuck is the author of the novel, Lost Bones of the Dead. He is a professional writer, avid comic collector, former teacher, and an international man of mystery. You can follow him on his Facebook page, The Comic Blog.