Welcome to Cool Comics in My Collection Episode 104, where we take a look at comic books I own (and in some cases ones that I let get away), both new and old, often with a nostalgic leaning for those feelings of yesteryear.
For each of the comic books I include in this blog (except for digital issues), 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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
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 104…
Cool Comics News!
This Episode marks my two-year anniversary of publishing this blog. Every Thursday I try to bring you interesting tidbits—quite often with a nostalgic feel—about comic books in my collection. I’ve also invited you to guest blog here, and four of you have taken me up on it. I appreciate the opportunity to see what others have to say, and hope you also enjoyed those guest posts. I do this out of love for the hobby. It’s always fun to have some books worth a lot of money, but for me, the joy of reading them eclipses value. As we head into year three, I’m just starting to collect newly issued comic books…again. Phase four, I call it. If you have any requests, thoughts, ideas, or want to guest blog, please don’t hesitate to let me know. You can post in the comments below, or contact me at the email address in the section above.
During year two, Cool Comics added a few new sections: Cool Comics News!, Recently Read Digital Comics, and Cool Comics Classics. Next week, as Cool Comics begins year 3, I’ll be unveiling the newest section of Cool Comics in My Collection.
Cool comics in my collection #494: Justice League vs. Suicide Squad #1, July 2017.
Justice League vs. Suicide Squad? Who doesn’t want to read this?! Another cool comic in my collection, another Walmart DC 3-pack variant cover. Are you the type of collector who sometimes wants to have all cover variants for a certain series or issue? Rest assured, from what I’ve seen, you can still pick this one up at your local Walmart. But what about the other 37 covers? Gulp…you mean there are 38 different covers for issue 1 of this series? According to the entry at comicbookrealm.com for this comic, yes. The original, a second printing, this Walmart variant, and 35 other covers. Happy hunting! Seriously, I wonder just how many people would be able to get all of these covers? The different covers add up to over $200 (and some don’t even have prices associated with them at this point), so it wouldn’t be cheap, and then you have to find people who are willing to sell. Ebay? Message boards? Reddit? Facebook groups? Your local comic shop? While this isn’t a challenge I would try to accomplish, if any of you have ever tried anything like this before, whether you’ve succeeded or failed, let us know in the comments section below. With a few details, if you will. The cover price of Justice League vs. Suicide Squad #1 is $3.99, while the current value of this variant is $5.
Cool comics in my collection #495: The New 52: Futures End #22, December 2014.
A couple weeks ago here at Cool Comics, I was excited about having read a Justice League Dark issue from my Walmart 3-pack because it had the Frankenstein Monster in it. While I’m familiar with Marvel’s version of the monster, and have a few issues of the Seventies solo series, as far as I can remember, I’d never previously read a DC Comic that had the monster. And now, in The New 52: Futures End #22, the Frankenstein Monster pops up yet again! A quick Internet search led me to find out that DC introduced the character in Detective Comics #135 in 1948. Apparently, he wasn’t used much, and during my DC reading periods, the character was absent. After Phase three of my comic collecting days ended in 2003, he started showing up more often. While this is old news to those of you in the know, it’s fresh and exciting to me. I have a love for the old Universal Monsters, along with any literature from which they came. I’ll have to try to hunt up some of these issues with the monster when I’m looking through back issues. The cover price of The New 52: Futures End #22 is $2.99, while the current value is $3.
Cool comics in my collection #496: Grayson #4, January 2015.
As I’ve said here a few times, the Walmart DC 3-Packs have been a lot of fun, giving me an opportunity to sample some of The New 52 titles, since I wasn’t actively buying comics during that period. Over the last few years, I’ve heard some people grumble about it, and some people who showered love on it. And while I’ve read mostly Marvel comics throughout my collecting periods, I’ll throw in that I’ve enjoyed the majority of The New 52 titles I’ve gotten. I never saw or looked for a list of what DC offered during that time, and now, when I open these discounted 3-packs, it’s always fun to see what’s in them. So when I saw this comic, Grayson #4, it was a complete surprise. Nightwing would have made more sense, I initially thought, but then with a little research I saw that there was a Nightwing series, and after they ended the run, DC had Dick Grayson star in a title with his own name, doing things a little differently this time around. So former teen sidekick Robin, who became his own man in Nightwing, has now morphed into a veritable James Bond. Kind of cool, especially if you love Batman and all its comic book offshoots. The cover price of Grayson #4 is $2.99, while the current value is $3.
Cool comics in my collection #497: Dark Nights: Metal #2, November 2017.
In Episode 102 of Cool Comics, Dark Nights: Metal #1 was featured in the blog as Cool Comics #488. I asked readers if I should stay with it or call it quits. The series is spread out over many different titles, and as one reader told me, the build-up has been a longtime coming, and it would be very helpful if I read some titles from the last few years. Unfortunately, there was no way I could make up that kind of ground before issue #2 came out. And even though I won’t understand much of what’s going on, I decided to forge ahead and continue with this limited series, and I’m really glad I did, because issue 2 was definitely worth the price of admission! The pace is rapid and you barely have time to breath from panel to panel, from page to page, and once you reach the end, you’ll find yourself screaming that issue 3 is still a month away. Yes, I certainly made the right decision! The cover price of Dark Nights: Metal #2 is $3.99, while the current value is $4.
Cool Comics Classics
Cool comics in my collection #498: House of Secrets #129, March 1975.
This is another one of those “scary” DC comics I happened to purchase at The Paradox Bookstore (a used bookstore) in Wheeling, WV, for just a dime back in the Seventies. I was fortunate enough (or maybe smart enough?) to buy three issues of this title. Probably what I should have done was convince my mother to buy every comic the owner, Tom, was selling for a mere 10¢ each. It was there that I got my copy of The Amazing Spider-Man #121 (the death of Gwen Stacy), along with some other really cool comics. Can you imagine walking into a store and finding all these Sixties and Seventies Marvel and DC titles for just a dime each? A dream come true! And while I can’t recall buying any DC superhero comics there, just titles like House of Secrets, House of Mystery, and Strange Adventures, I’m really glad to have them. They are a part of my past. The cover price of House of Secrets #129 is 25¢, while the current value is $20.
Recently Read Digital Comics
Runaways started back in the summer of 2003, just a few months before my third phase of collecting came to an end, so I didn’t bother with this new title (Argh! It’s currently valued at $60, so why didn’t I buy it then?). And now that these kids are about to have a streaming series on Hulu (November 21), I thought it was time to find out what the comic is all about. Especially since I was able to get the first issue free via comiXology, which is always a good thing. Runaways features a bunch of kids from different families whose parents get together annually and meet in secret while their kids hang out together. They don’t know each other well, because it’s only once a year. But this time, they decide to find out what the parents are actually doing, and they go through a secret room, look through a two-way mirror, and their lives will never be the same again! Brian K. Vaughan (Y-The Last Man) is the writer, and he certainly has a way of making the buildup to the big reveal keep your interest, despite the fact that not much goes on until the dramatic finale. And yes, after what the kids witness, the title of the comic makes sense.