And Now, Cool Comics Classics!

Welcome to Cool Comics in My Collection Episode 95, where we take a nostalgic look at comic books I currently own, and in some sad cases, ones that I let get away.

For each of the comic books I include in this blog, I list the current secondary market value. This is according to the listings at the website www.comicbookrealm.com. They list out the near mint prices, which are on the comic book grading scale of 9.4. If you go to the website to look up any in your collection, you can click on the price and see the value at different grades. Not all of my comics are 9.4. Some are probably better, and some are worse. But to simplify it, that’s the grading price I use here. And remember, a comic book is only worth what someone is willing to pay for it.

Have you considered being a guest host for Cool Comics? You can do a theme or just pick any of your comics for inclusion (this blog is for all ages, so please keep that in mind), with a maximum of seven issues. Repeat guest hosts are permitted and encouraged. Send your completed blog to edgosney62@gmail.com.

If you have any questions or comments, please scroll to the bottom of the page to where it says, “Leave a reply.” I hope you enjoy seeing these as much as I do writing about them. And now, Episode 95…

 

Cool Comics News!

Last week I announced here that for the first time in 14 years, I’ll be purchasing new comics from my comic shop, and covering them here in Cool Comics. This blog started off with me focusing on older comics, and then I did a few months with particular themes, such as Harvey, Saturday morning cartoon comics, TV show comics, Westerns, etc. When I discovered the DC 3-Packs at Walmart, I bought them and added them to Cool Comics, too. I’ve been enjoying reading some of the new stuff, particularly the DC Rebirth issues. And Archie comics also make occasional appearances here, because I have been reading some of their newer offerings. So what makes a cool comic? That’s for the reader and collector to decide…on an individual basis. What I like you might not, and vice versa. When I made the decision to write about all the comics that come inside sealed 3-packs, I knew there’d be some issues I didn’t consider that cool. But you might. And so, I’ll continue to cover all the issues when I break open a 3-pack.

What is all of this leading to? I’ll cut to the chase: I’m creating a new heading, which will appear from time to time. I’m keeping it simple and calling it Cool Comics Classics. Again, you may not always agree with me on my choices, but some comics deserve a little more recognition, and some I just like that much to specifically call out. However, I won’t be numbering these separately. They’ll be part of the regular Cool Comics numbering system, regardless of what the pundits at DC and Marvel think I should do.

 

Cool Comics

Cool comics in my collection #457: The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #1, December 2015.

The first three cool comics listed here all came in a Walmart 3-pack for just $5. You get your money’s worth when you consider the cover price of all three, but as always, buying comics this way is sort of like getting a pack of baseball cards, because you don’t know what’s going to be inside. Except for the comic on top. And I know, baseball cards come in wrappers and you can’t see the first card, in most cases. I remember when I was younger and they had packs of baseball cards that had three sections, all wrapped up in clear plastic, with a hole at the top so that stores could hang them on hooks. If you’re old enough to remember these, you probably remember how much fun it was to search through to try to find some of your favorite players on top, and then the excitement after you bought them of opening the three sections and going over all the cards. None of this has anything to do with Squirrel Girl. This is just the second comic with the character I’ve read, and I can’t say I’m much of a fan, but I understand that lots of people enjoy her exploits. Yet I bought this 3-pack and I could see through to this comic, but I’m willing to give new things a try. The cover price of The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl is $3.99, while the current value is $4.

 

Cool comics in my collection #458: Star Wars: Vader Down #1, January 2016.

I’m not the biggest Star Wars fan on the block (I tend to lean more towards Star Trek…and I’ll take Dune over Star Trek), but I found this comic, which introduces a multi-part storyline, quiet intriguing. Darth Vader is both loved and hated by millions, and just by looking at this cover you can’t help but recall some of his great movie scenes. Heroes need villains, and good villains are worth their weight in gold. So, while I wasn’t overly excited with the Squirrel Girl comic, this Star Wars issue made me feel young again, bringing back memories of the summer before my senior year of high school, driving to the theater with my friends (in my dad’s giant Mercury Marquis station wagon with the groovy wood paneling) to see The Empire Strikes Back. Good times and good memories. The cover price of Star Wars: Vader Down #1 is $4.99, while the current value is $5.

 

Cool comics in my collection #459: Wolverine #2, April 2014.

I thought this comic might be fun, seeing as how Spider-Man is on the cover with Wolverine, but what I didn’t know was that Wolverine has basically lost his powers, and that this isn’t the “real” Spider-Man. What? Exactly. Superior Spider-Man? What in the world have they done with MY Spider-Man! I had to Google it to find out just who or what this whole Superior thing was about, and found out that it’s basically Otto Octavius—aka Doctor Octopus—in Peter Parker’s body. This may not be news to all of you reading this, but for me it was a “WHAT THE?” moment. And Wolverine? Yes, it seems as if he’s a bad guy. Although with comic books, things can change at the whim of a creative team, so who really knows? It sort of makes me yearn for the past. But then, when it comes to comic books, that’s never a bad thing. The cover price of Wolverine #2 is $3.99, while the current value is $4.

 

Cool Comics Classics

Cool comics in my collection #460: Fantastic Four #51, June 1966.

It’s my first Cool Comics Classics entry, and I’m starting it off with a bang! If you’ve never read Fantastic Four #51, “THIS MAN…THIS MONSTER!” then you need to find a way to get your hands on a copy or a reprint (Essential Fantastic Four, Vol. 3, also contains this issue), because this is what comics are all about. A reluctant hero, a villain with a nefarious plan, and a man who trusts his friend with his life…but at what cost?! I was three years old when this issue hit the newsstands, so no, I didn’t buy it for the 12-cent cover price. But I did pick it up recently at my favorite local comic shop, Kenmore Komics, for a great price. The condition isn’t the best, but it’s mine at long last. I love the classic Sixties cover, and with the art by Jack Kirby and script by Stan Lee, it’s like holding a piece of history. But perhaps the coolest part for me and this comic is that I had never read it in a reprint or “Best of” issue, so it was like new to me. And this story, a timeless classic, is worth every penny. What are some of your favorite Cool Comics Classics? Tell me in the comments section below, and maybe you’ll see it in a future episode. The cover price of Fantastic Four #51 is 12 cents, while the current value is $525.

 

Recently Read Digital Comics

Just a quick note that I’m partway through a large collection that’s several hundred pages long, and I’ll cover it once I’m finished.

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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