Action Comics #1 “Rocket Copy” Sells for Record $3.5 million

by Sarah Thomas

012523A-1024x536 Action Comics #1 “Rocket Copy” Sells for Record $3.5 millionWhat increases in value by $370,000 in just one year? Must be a sought-after comic book: Action Comics #1 “Rocket Copy” has sold for record $3.5 million

*Press release courtesy of ComicConnect

Vincent Zurzolo, President of ComicConnect.com – online marketplace for comic books and pop culture collectibles – announced on 1/24/23 that the one-of-a-kind Action Comics #1 “Rocket Copy” sold for a record $3.55 million. It topped ComicConnect’s previous record of $3.25 million for an Action Comics #1 in 2021.

In January 2022, the Action Comics #1 “Rocket Copy” sold for $3.18 million at public auction.

Then in September 2022, a Goldin sold the same book for $3.4 million. Just a few months later, ComicConnect eclipsed both sales.

What makes this feat so impressive is that Zurzolo was able to broker the deal so soon after the book had sold, and for a significant profit during a time of sagging stock markets, continued inflation, and a troubled world economy.

But this issue isn’t just any comic book. It’s a legendary copy, distinctive because the 13-year-old buyer in 1938 plunked down his dime, then stamped the image of a rocket ship next to the title – hence the “Rocket Copy.”

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Making the collectible even cooler, Zurzolo said, is that the actual stamp that produced the rocket ship imprint was included in the sale. “I love the rocket stamp!” he said. “It fits perfectly, since Superman came to earth in a rocket ship as a baby.”

The buyer, a prominent figure in the tech industry, is choosing to remain anonymous.

“As a kid, I’ve always dreamed of getting an Action Comics #1 someday and I’m so excited to get one in a great grade,” he said.

Among collectors, Action Comics #1 is considered the most important comic book ever issued, Zurzolo said, adding, “The superhero genre essentially was born with this issue, as was the Golden Age of comics.”

Action Comics #1 marked the first appearance of Superman.

His creators, Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, had been submitting comic strip ideas to newspapers for several years — from the time they were still teenagers — and had begun getting work in the new genre of comic books by 1935.

Along the way, they were honing their ideas for a Superman character. Their early efforts were rejected, but in 1938, Detective Comics (DC) decided to introduce Superman in the premiere issue of a new anthology comic book titled Action Comics, and the rest is history.

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“This is an 84-year-old comic book in amazing original condition that launched the entire superhero genre that is such a huge part of our popular culture,” Zurzolo said. “If not for Action Comics and the introduction of Superman, comic books would have likely died off many decades ago.”

CGC, the leading third-party grading service for pop culture collectibles, has to-date certified 75 copies of the issue, 43 of them unrestored. “But it is exceedingly difficult to find an unrestored copy in the grade as offered here,” Zurzolo said.

ComicConnect is no stranger to million-dollar-plus sales of vintage comic books. In 2021, it was recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records for having achieved eight sales of $1 million or more.

“I believe that comics remain one of the most compelling alternative investment categories, with values that have room for appreciation and growth, especially in comparison to other categories,” Zurzolo said.

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