Three comics are vying for the title of the first appearance of the Goddess of Thunder: What If…? #10, Thor: God of Thunder #25, and Thor #1. Collectors are jumping on one issue in particular, triggering a volcanic eruption only days removed from Marvel’s SDCC announcement.
Everyone wants a piece of Jane Foster. Since Marvel’s blockbuster announcement about Thor: Love and Thunder and the inclusion of Jane Foster as Lady Thor, collectors have debated which issue is her first appearance: What If…#10 or Thor #1?
On various collectors’ forums, I’ve seen the argument boil down to which issue is selling the most copies for the highest average prices. If that’s how we rule Lady Thor’s first appearance, then hands down 2014’s Thor #1 wins the fight. However, What If…? #10 is holding its own and values for the higher grades are on the move.
Want more Thor content? Check out “The New Direction of the MCU?” and “The Wish List: Key Issues After Marvel’s SDCC Announcements.”
This is simply astounding. In only two days, Thor #1 exploded from a $58 average in 2018 to now selling for over $300. (See why you should listen to me?)
On July 20, the day of Marvel’s big announcement, four graded 9.8s sold from as low as $79 to as much as $140, giving it a single-day average of $100. That was nothing. Yesterday, eight more 9.8s traded hands, averaging $324 in one day. In fact, two of those copies brought an impressive $450 and $455.
From 2017 to 2018, the fair market value rose by just $10, and no one thought much about Thor #1. Why would they? Natalie Portman was said to have hated working for Marvel Studios with no intention of portraying Jane Foster ever again. To coin the phrase, never say never. Avengers: Endgame planted the seeds for several modern Marvel tales, and, lo and behold, Lady Thor will appear in Thor: Love and Thunder. That sent values through the roof.
What If…? #10 has been red hot because it’s the first time readers saw Jane Foster pick up Mjolnir. Whether or not the collecting community agrees on the Thunder Goddess’ first full appearance, What If…? #10 is nonetheless on the rise, just not at the same pace as Thor #1.
The three most popular grades have been the 9.8, 9.6, and 9.4. The 9.8, which averaged $208 last year, has sold five times for an average of $295 over the past two days, earning as much as $340. Surprisingly, the 9.6 surpassed that with a single sale of $425. That grade has sold seven times since July 20, and it has averaged $210 in that span. Then there’s the 9.4, a grade that has seen seven sales in the past 48 hours for a $131 two-day average.
The debate as old as the collecting hobby itself: which is more important, the cameo or the full first appearance? In the final pages of Thor: God of Thunder #25, there is a glimpse of Jane Foster in full Thunder Goddess costume. While that is the technical first appearance of the canonical Lady Thor, it is the cameo, and cameos typically bring less money on the market. Still, its value is swelling. After none of the standard-cover, graded 9.8s sold last year, two copies brought $71 and $75 on July 20. Back in 2017, it averaged just $41.
Until CGC makes a call on which issue gets the “first full appearance” note on the label, the debate will rage on. Even then, it will likely continue. No matter where your opinion may fall in the argument, it’s safe to say that prices are outlandish, but they won’t stay this high forever.