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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Ten Entry Level Investment Comics for Entry Level Collectors

By R.T. White
I have put together a list of relatively inexpensive entry level investment comics that are quality issues to help build your collection. These comics are low risk and overtime should increase in value. I base this claim on the nature of each comic listed and the fact they all are CGC 9.8.  Since this list is designed for entry level collectors, who might be fearful of purchasing a $500.00 investment comic, I placed a cap of $100.00 on each comic. All the comics listed are CGC 9.8 comics that sold on eBay in the last six months for approximately $100.00 or less.

1. Batman #404, February 1987 (CGC 9.8)

One of the best Batman stories ever re-told.  Written by the legendary Frank Miller, this comic starts the “Year One” storyline of the origin of Batman and contains the first appearance of the modern Catwoman. This combination makes this a great comic to start any collection. 

2. Batman: The Killing Joke, released 1988 (CGC 9.8)

What an awesome cover of the Clown Prince of Crime.  The Killing Joke is written by the great Alan Moore.  On top of being a great Batman-Joker story; it retells the origin of the Joker.  This story is also important to the DC universe because Barbara Gordon (Batgirl) is crippled by the Joker, which leads her to become the Oracle (Suicide Squad #23 – January 1989).

3. Daredevil #181, April 1982 (CGC 9.8)

This is the oldest comic on the list. "One Wins, One Dies." A special double-sized Daredevil issue written by Frank Miller. This key issue tells the story of the "death" of Elektra and features appearances by Daredevil's two greatest foes - Bullseye and Kingpin.

4. Web of Spiderman #1, April 1985 (CGC 9.8)

This Spider-Man series started in 1985, with the premiere issue featuring him in his alien black costume. The story contains the first appearance of the Vulturions, a group of villains connected to Spidey's old enemy the vulture.

5. Wolverine #1 (Regular Series), Nov. 1988 (CGC 9.8)

Wolverine kicks off his first regular series with a bang. Awesome cover art of Wolverine standing on a pile of bodies. Story features the first appearance of Wolverine as "Patch." You can't go wrong with this book, while it is not the scarcest of issues, Wolverine continues to be a comic fan favorite and his books are always in high demand.

6. Wolverine #10 (Regular Series), August 1989 (CGC 9.8)

A Wolverine #10 costs about the same as a Wolverine #1. Why you ask? Look at that cover. A classic battle of Wolverine vs. Sabretooth. Plus an extra bonus, instead of an ad for a box of plastic toy soldiers or "Big League Chew", the back cover is a cool pinup of Wolverine read to deal some more damage.

7 & 8. X-Men #212, December 1986 and X-Men #213, January 1987 (CGC 9.8)

Both comics were part of Marvel’s “Mutant Massacre” event, which spanned issues of the X-Men, New Mutants, X-Factor, Power Pack and Thor. X-Men #212 has a great Wolverine cover and as advertised another Wolverine vs. Sabretooth battle. The fun continues in X-Men #213 with another “classic” Wolverine vs. Sabretooth cover.  For X-Men fans Psylocke joins the X-Men at the end of issue #213.

9. Amazing Spider-Man #361, April 1992 (CGC 9.8)

Amazing Spider-Man #361 contains the first full appearance of Carnage. This is part one of a three-part storyline involving Carnage and Venom. This issue was selling right around the #100 mark at the end of 2013. There has been a slight uptick in the price, but if you time it right on eBay, you can probably still pick one up near $100.00.


10. Batman #428, December 1988 (CGC 9.8)

Started this article off with Batman, might as well end it with Batman. Batman #428 is part three or four in "A Death in the Family" storyline. The "death" in the family is Robin (Jason Todd). It's a great Joker story with a short appearance by Superman. This is not an easy book to find on eBay in CGC 9.8, but when they are up for auction, you can pick this up for around $100 bucks plus shipping.

BONUS – Crisis on Infinite Earths #7, Oct 1985 (CGC 9.8)

Just want to put your toe in the water? Never bought a “slabbed” comic before?  Don’t want to spend $100.00?  This is a key issue and it is a sleeper. This comic in CGC 9.8, featuring the death of the original Supergirl, can be yours for only $50.00. It has a great George Perez cover of a crying Superman holding a dead Supergirl. I love this comic and it is a part of an awesome 12 issue maxi-run. If you are new to comics or a fan of the DC Universe, I highly suggest you pick-up with graphic novel that contains all 12 issues. 

As with any collection, you should collect what you like.  All the issues that I picked are of popular comic characters and contain a key element; a death, an origin story, a first appearance or a “classic” cover. 

The reason I suggest you purchase all of these books in CGC 9.8 is twofold. One, these are newer issues and therefore more plentiful in higher grades. As an investment it is important to buy the best.  Second, if you needed to sell, the market for these books is greatest in CGC 9.8 which will allow you to command a premium for the comic (or at a minimum, you should be able to get your purchase price back).  

The comics listed above are just my humble opinion of books you can purchase without going broke and over time should provide a good investment.  


  1. Thank you, RT White, for whipping this up. It's a great list...lots of memories and comics I grew up reading as a kid as well. I remember The Death in the Family story. Great story, and the ending was determined by the readers. You called and cast your vote to determine whether Jason Todd Robin II lived or died.

    I should note that many of these comics in CGC 9.8 are on the verge of breaking the $100 boundary on eBay. They are dropping really close, so if any of these appeal to you, you might want to snag them up quick. Always awesome to hear and read about other opinions concerning comics.

    Great job and thank you again.

  2. Great list, R.T.! I might have to check out that Wolverine #10. Killer cover! I have Batman 429, but somehow didn't manage to get 428. I did get the trade paperback though.


  3. Absolutely love the site. Juts got into comic investing not log ago and this website has helped immensely. Just curious what other sites, if any, people frequent for their comic investing news.

    1. Great! I'm glad you like the site and welcome to the awesome and fun world of comic investing. I'm not sure about other comic investing sites. I'm sure there are some out there, and this one definitely can't be the only one. Perhaps someone else can answer that for ya, because I've mostly only seen the subject discussed on comic forums.

  4. I like the list, but some of these are way over $100. I didn't look them all up, but I know Batman #428 is around $175. And I remember Web of Spiderman #1 also being around the same price. I could be wrong though.

  5. Glad you like the list. As for the prices of the comics, the list was based on sales from 2013/2014 on Ebay auctions.

    I mentioned the Batman #428 (9.8) is tough to find and has sold in the $100-$120 range in the past. As of 1/26/14, this is CGC census on Batman #428 - Universal (9.8) - 71 copies, (9.6)- 154 copies and (9.4)-124 copies. I think it is the low census and the black border of the comic that makes it a tough find in CGC 9.8. I don't own this comic yet. If I can't get it on Ebay in the $100 range, I plan on hitting one of the Cons and hopefully be able to negotiate a decent price.

    Web of Spiderman #1 (CGC 9.8) is an easier find in the $100.00 range if you time it right on Ebay. One sold for $75.00 in November 2013 and one sold for $98.00 in December 2013. The most recent sale of a CGC 9.8 was yesterday for $118.00 which includes the shipping cost. This was a straight sale not an auction sale.

    As for the other books on the list, with patience you should be able to snag them around the $100.00 range. Except for Amazing Spider-Man #361 (9.8). This book as been super hot on Ebay, going for as high as $177.00 with shipping in January 2014. This book sold for $113.00 with shipping in November 2013. Not sure why Carnage is so hot. (Maybe it was this list, just kidding).

    Once again, thanks for you comment, I hope my explanations helped and good luck hunting for the bargains.

    RT White

    1. I believe ASM #361 was one of the highest printed ASM ever, so it might be better to just hunt high grade raw copies at cons. I know there were some rumors in September-ish about Carnage coming in a future movie. And within the last month someone on the CGC forum posted what was suppose to be the original cover to #361, so maybe that spiked interest again.

      I picked up 4 high grade copies of The Killing Joke at a local con last weekend, but I've always been hesitant on submitting bigger books because I don't know how they will grade.