If you're a comic book aficionado, here's how to determine the worth of your collection.
How do I identify my comics?
To identify a comic book, you need to locate the indicia information which will tell you the exact title, publication date, copyright information and issue number of the comic. The indicia is usually found on the inside cover or first couple of pages of a comic book.
What makes comics valuable?
There are many considerations that make a comic book valuable. Predominant among these is the comic's age. Comics belonging to the Golden Age (1930s and 40s) are the most highly-valued today because they are rare. Unfortunately, newer comics aren't worth all that much. Another factor is the print number. Some comics are reprinted many times due to high demand. In these cases, an earlier print will fetch a lot more money than a later one. Limited edition comic books are also worth a lot.
More about comic art
Original comic art has become a treasured collector's item since the 90s and can even be found in famous museums because they are extremely unique. If you have an original piece of art that an artist prepared for a publication, contact a comic book appraiser to find out what it may be worth.
What is comic book grading?
'Grading' is used to describe a comic book's overall condition. It takes into account factors like tears, discoloration, water damage and creases. It is usually a good idea to have your comics professionally graded by companies like CGC (Comics Guaranty Company) because it assures prospective buyers of objectivity. However, you can also grade your comic collection yourself using an eight-point scale that goes from Mint (no tears, cuts, rusts fading, and creases) to Poor (major wear and tear, bent spine, stains, brittle pages). Use this scale to assess the condition of your own collection objectively.
Some of the rarest and most valuable comic books include:
Action Comics, No. 1: Valued at a whopping ZAR 11,000,000, this was Superman's debut in 1938.
Detective Comics, No. 27: Valued at more than ZAR 10,000,000, this comic marked Batman's debut in 1939 when it sold less than ZAR 1!
Amazing Fantasy, No. 15: Originally sold for less than ZAR1 in 1938, the comic that debuted Spiderman recently sold for about ZAR 7,290,000.
Marvel Comics, No. 1: The first comic to introduce Wolverine, X-Men and Ironman and worth more than ZAR 2,600,000.
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