The first Marvel comic book ever published fetched $1.26 million (nearly R18m) at a Texas auction in late November when Dallas-based Heritage Auctions sold its first “nearmint” comic book.
The condition of Marvel Comics #1 was officially and independently rated a staggering 9.4 out of 10 by the Certified Guaranty Company, according to Heritage senior vice-president, Ed Jaster.
He says the book, published in 1939, was almost as good as new. “Heritage has sold a number of copies of this particular comic book but this ‘pedigree’ original is the most expensive we have sold.”
The copy auctioned was acquired by a post office employee in the 1940s in Pennsylvania. Its new owner wished to remain anonymous. Marvel Comics is today best known as the creators of super heroes such as Iron Man, The Hulk, Thor, Captain America and Spider-Man.
The 1939 inaugural issue introduced The Human Torch (of the Fantastic Four), Namor the Sub-Mariner and Ka-Zar.
These comic book heroes played important roles in the Marvel lore and are why Marvel Comics #1 is regarded as one of “the big three” of the most valuable comic books, alongside Action Comics #1 (the first Superman) and Detective Comics #27 (the first Batman).