When Captain America Walked Away

Welcome to Cool Comics in My Collection Episode 14, where we take a look at six cool comic books I currently own, and one that I let get away. If you’ve enjoying reading about my trip down comic book lane, consider signing up for my newsletter. There are perks to being a subscriber, and you’ll have the inside track to my writing projects. I welcome any comments you might have, and hope you enjoy seeing these as much as I do writing about them. And now, Episode 14…

Cool comics in my collection #92: Werewolf by Night #3, January 1973.
Werewolf by Night #3My favorite comics are the ones from the seventies, since that’s when I first started collecting them. I didn’t buy this issue of Werewolf by Night new off the stands, but picked it up around 2000 at Kenmore Komics in Akron, Ohio. During my first go-round with comics, I pretty much just stuck with superheroes. But when I collected from 1993 to 2003, I remedied that by searching out back issue comics from the seventies, making sure to pick up some monster titles whenever I could find them at a good price. Part of the problem with this type of collecting is incomplete stories, since they typically continue, but as I’ve gotten older and space has become an issue, I don’t so much mind having gaps in some titles. The cover price Werewolf by Night #3 is 20 cents, while the current value is $80.
Cool comics in my collection #93: Superman #204, February 1968.
Superman #204When my father was young, he collected comic books, with Superman being one of his favorite heroes. And he had the really early ones that are worth a fortune today. Unfortunately, he sent his collection to an older cousin during World War II so he would have something to read, and the ship was sunk (though his cousin survived). So whenever I bought Superman comics, I’d always think of my father. I bought some older issues of Superman at good prices when I could find them from 1993 to 2003, and this is one of them. I paid $1 for this issue. This issue contains a couple reprints and several different stories, featuring some typical guests like Lex Luthor and Lois Lane. The cover price for Superman #204 is 12 cents, while the current value is $120.
Cool comics in my collection #94: Thor #186, March 1971.
Thor #186When you think about it, Thor is sort of a strange character to include in comic books, since he is part of Norse mythology. Same thing goes with Hercules as a Greek God. But Marvel has done some cool stories with these immortals, and I must admit that I am a fan of their tales. I collected a few Thor comics in the seventies, and when I started collecting in the nineties, Thor became a permanent fixture in my collection every month. Then I decided to dig in some back issue boxes and see if I could get some cool older issues, like this one. I paid $1 for it, which I think was well-worth the money. Here we get the Warriors Three, Baldur, Sif, and Odin. Unfortunately, they face off against Hela, the Norse goddess of death, so things don’t look good for our heroes. The cover price for Thor #186 is 15 cents, while the current value is $100.
Cool comics in my collection #95: The Incredible Hulk #200, June 1976.
The Incredible Hulk #200Do you remember the Marvel cartoons from the sixties, with the great theme songs? The Hulk’s song was pretty cool, at least for kids. I loved those old cartoons, though the animation was sorely lacking. I bought some issues of the green goliath here and there, but never really collected him until the nineties. I picked up this comic in a back issue bin in Atlanta, Georgia, for somewhere south of $1. This 200th anniversary issue is loaded with guests that normally inhabit the pages of the Hulk, along with some others, like Iron Man, the Silver Surfer, Rhino, and Juggernaut. Collecting key issues from the seventies is meaningful to me, considering that’s when I started buying comic books. Marvel even went through a period in which they included Marvel Value Stamps, telling you to cut them out and collect them. Unfortunately, a few times, I did what they told me! Whoever owned this comic first didn’t listen, which I’m very happy about, as the stamp is Spider-Man. The cover price for The Incredible Hulk #200 is 25 cents, while the current value is $80.
Cool comics in my collection #96: The Avengers #107, January 1973.
Avengers #107The Avengers is a huge movie property these days, but back in 1973, it was just a simple team of super-heroes, saving the world each month against foes such as the Grim Reaper, as on the cover. I was sporadic in my purchases of the title in the seventies, and I bought this one as a back issue in the nineties. This is definitely a cool comic to own, especially considering that our heroes on the cover have all been in the movies: Captain American, Iron Man, Hawkeye, Scarlet Witch, and Vision. Other heroes in this issue include the Black Panther (who will be in Captain America: Civil War), Thor, Wasp, Hank Pym, Wonder Man, and the Hulk. Some of the villains include Loki and Madame Hydra. Rick Jones is also on the inside of this issue (that guy really gets around the Marvel Universe, doesn’t he?). The cover price for The Avengers #107 is 20 cents, while the current value is $50.
Cool comics in my collection #97: Captain America #176, August 1974.
Captain America #176What?! Can it really be true? The star-spangled Avenger is calling it quits?! Shades of The Amazing Spider-Man $50, folks, and I don’t know what the nation will do when our symbol of justice and freedom walks away from his super-hero job. Is he crazy? Even Thor thinks Steve Rogers doesn’t know what he’s doing. But I sure did when I snagged this one at Slicks in Martins Ferry just a few months before I turned twelve. Based on the proceedings during the last few issues, Cap can no longer in good conscience continue his role as Captain America. This was the kind of issue that had neighborhood kids talking and speculating for months, and I’m glad I was a part of that comic book gossip. While the value of this issue hasn’t risen as much as others from the same time period, this left an indelible mark on my comic collecting sensibilities, because I couldn’t bring myself to buy further issues of this title for the next six months. The cover price for Captain America #176 is 25 cents, while the current value is $20.
Cool comics in my collection #98 (One That Got Away): The X-Files #1, January 1995.
The X-Files #1Are you aware that The X-Files will be back on TV January 24, 2016? The first issue of the comic came out nearly 21 years ago, and though it seems odd, it was produced by Topps. Yes, the company famous for baseball and football cards. They did a pretty good job, and I collected every comic they put out, from the regular monthly (this one) to digest-sized to special editions to a magazine. I definitely was crazy about the show and the comics. But alas, a few years ago I had to make room in my house and sold these issues at a garage sale. Will the new show bring back the same feelings I had with the old TV series? We can only hope. Meanwhile, don’t forget: The Truth is out there. The cover price for The X-Files #1 is $2.50, while the current value is $30.

 

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About Ed Gosney

Ed Gosney grew up in the small river town of Martins Ferry, Ohio, near Wheeling, West Virginia. He claims it was a magical place that helped mold his imagination, as he spent countless hours roaming the hills, playing in a cave, and hanging out at the Ohio River with his childhood friends. Ed is a graduate of The Ohio State University with a degree in English Education, and served in the Army, becoming a Journalist and the editor of the Army post newspaper. After being honorably discharged, he entered the corporate world to write business proposals, working for several different banks and at times managing proposal teams. Currently living in Copley, Ohio, Ed has been married to Melissa since 1987 and has three children, Renee, Ed, and Brynn.

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