After three years, the Fantastic Four will be reunited in a new ongoing series. Like every other comic on the shelves these days, the latest FF #1 has close to a million variant covers, and that presents the problem of which ones to buy.
Have you missed the Fantastic Four? Do you like variants? Do you LOVE variants? No? Sorry to bother you. I’ll let myself out.
Of course you like variants. As collectors, we all like variants, I think, and between FF #1 and Batman #50, you could easily go broke buying variants. The Batman wedding issue has more than 20 variant covers, and FF is up to 13 as of mid-June, and that’s not counting the FF tribute covers for other titles, such as Amazing Spider-Man and Venom. By the time the issue debuts in August, there will likely be more.
The FF variants feature an all-star list of artist, including George Perez, Artgerm, Esad Ribic, Sara Pichelli, Alex Ross, Emanuela Lupacchino, Skottie Young, Arthur Adams, Mark Brooks, and Simone Bianchi. That is an impressive list, certainly, and the most eager of collectors will get hold of all 13 variants. However, from an investment standpoint, the best ones to get will be the bigger name artists. Everyone has their favorites, but Alex Ross and Artgerm are proven sellers.
Ross, for one, has earned the title as one of the top cover artists in the business. While he has done interior art in the past – 1996’s Kingdom Come was simply beautiful – he has been a variant cover specialist as of late. Most recently, his Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #300 cover art has been selling quite well. That comic is averaging $130 at a 9.8. His Amazing Spider-Man covers commemorating Dan Slott’s final run on the title have been magnificent as well. In fact, his covers were better than most of the variants for those issues.
Another name you’ll notice on that list is Stanley Lau, but in the comic world he goes by one name: Artgerm. A relative newcomer compared to most doing the FF covers, he has quickly made a name for himself. His Wonder Woman #51 is a serious eye-catcher and is receiving quite the buzz, while he also received high praise for his work on the Mighty Thor #705.
With so many variants, it’s hard to decide on which ones you should invest your dollars. It seems there are variants for almost every title now, and the milestone issues (or at least the ones the publishers want you to treat like a milestone, even if it’s really not) get the royal treatment with huge numbers of variants. One thing I’m seeing is that while we may enjoy the cool art that Marvel and D.C. roll out for the variants, what makes them truly collectible and sought after is what is inside the pages. When it comes to FF #1, the variants will most definitely sell as they tend to do. However, I’m not anticipating this latest number one (look at all the other number ones on the market at the moment) to be particularly collectible a year from now unless a new character gets introduced.