You’d better not have a pre-Parker Industries budget if you plan on heading to the Heritage Auctions’ Comics & Comic Art Signature® Auction in Dallas, especially if you plan on trying to get the Holy Grail of Spider-Man comics: Amazing Fantasy #15.
The item is described as such:
Amazing Fantasy #15 (Marvel, 1962) CGC NM 9.4 Off-white pages. Every now and then something comes through the doors here at the Heritage Comics and Comic Art division that makes even the most jaded comics expert sit up and take notice. This incredible copy of Amazing Fantasy #15, the first appearance of Spider-Man, more than fits that bill — it’s positively jaw-dropping! We’ve seen a few high-grade copies of this landmark Silver Age key, including the well-known White Mountain copy that also graded 9.4 (sold way back in 2005 for a then-princely sum of $126,500), but there’s always room for one more addition to this exclusive club!
You all know the basics for this issue — the origin and first appearance of Spider-Man, and the first appearances of Uncle Ben and Aunt May; Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko cover, and Ditko story pages; a ranking of #1 on Overstreet’s list of Top 50 Silver Age Comics. Here’s the lowdown on this particular copy — it’s graded 9.4. Need to know more? Note that the pesky Marvel “chipping” so commonly found on this issue is non-existent here. This dream copy looks as if it was read once, very carefully, and then put away. It’s been stashed back all these years, waiting for just one collector to come along and grab it with the right bid. Will that collector be you, True Believer? Overstreet 2015 NM- 9.2 value = $240,000. CGC census 12/15: 4 in 9.4, 3 higher.
“We think this comic has the potential to realize the highest price ever paid at public auction for a Spider-Man comic book,” said Managing Director of the Comics Department, Lon Allen. “It could soar well past our estimate.”
It’s expected that the near mint (NM 9.4, to be exact) copy of Spidey’s first appearence is expected to bring in $400,000+. That’s a lot of zeros… FYI, the current pre-bid as of the time of this article’s publication was a paltry $240,000.
“Whoever buys this comic will be joining an elite club,” Allen went on to say. “There are only a handful of these comics in this condition that exist.”
It was in 1980 when comic book collector Walter Yakaboski had the good fortune of coming across a batch of early Marvel comic books for the “small” sum of $10,000, which today, with inflation, would be just shy of $40,000. Along with Amazing Fantasy #15, Yakaboski also walked away with a near mint copy of The Amazing Spider-Man #1, which will also be up for bid at the same auction and is expected to sell for more than $130,000.
Between the two, if all goes as expected, that’s over half a million dollars! I wonder if Walter had that in mind when he initially shelled out that ten grand!
Over on the comic art front there is a piece of original work from John Romita, Sr. in the form of Amazing Spider-Man #62 original cover art circa 1968. The spectacular image features our favorite webbed wonder being readily handled by none other than the Queen of the Inhumans, Medusa and is expected to go for a the hefty price of $150,000+.
“This cover is in the larger ‘twice-up’ size that collectors covet,” said Vice President at Heritage, Todd Hignite. “It’s fresh-to-the-market too. The consignor bought a handful of pieces of comic art in the 1980s and put them away as he focused on collecting other things. He’ll have a tidy return on investment to say the least.”
Still, none of these sums can come close to the Amazing Fantasy #15 with a CGC grade of 9.6, the highest ever found, that sold for over $1.1 million several years ago.
So, are you looking to spice up your comic book collection? Recently win the lottery? The bidding runs from February 18th-20th. Good luck!
Heritage Auctions is the largest auction house founded in the United States and the world’s third largest, with annual sales of more than $850 million, and 950,000+ online bidder members. For more information about Heritage Auctions, and to join and receive access to a complete record of prices realized, with full-color, enlargeable photos of each lot, please visit HA.com. Follow them at HA.com/Facebook and HA.com/Twitter.