From the Speculative Pit of Hell: Spawn #1

by Norman Robinson III

hbo-PMRS843-SN-Full-Image_GalleryBackground-en-US-1484348617105._SX1080_-300x169 From the Speculative Pit of Hell: Spawn #1The comic book hunt has one common thread of experience for collectors, investors, and speculators alike. Everyone has at one time or another during a sale day, back issue bargain, or just buying books from a buddy come across comics that are ubiquitous. They are almost as numerous as the traffic lights in a small city. Here are a few examples to refresh our collective sigh of disgust: Conan The Barbarian 101-299, Cloak and Dagger #1 first title, New Mutants #1, and the worst offender of all the books is X-Men #1 from 1991. This x-absurd ubiquity “sold 8,186,500 copies making it likely contender for best selling single-issue comic in U.S. history” (Source: Polo, S. VM). You get the idea, common books, with little to no value. Five years ago, I would have put Spawn #1 in the mix. But now, this once bargain bin comic is climbing out of the “Pit of Speculative Hell” and is ranked the number two most popular comic last month per GoCollect. What trend returns can you expect for this comic book during 2020?



Spawn #1

692364_spawn-1-195x300 From the Speculative Pit of Hell: Spawn #1This comic book was created in 1992 by Todd McFarlane with the team of Dale Keown and George Perez pencils. That is 28 years in the back issue bins of squalor. Now many of you might have seen a bump in sales when the first Spawn movie came out in 1997. Unfortunately, I was still a serf in the corporate world at that time and did not follow comics in the 90s. If it did get a bump in price I am sure it was only temporary. Please feel free to comment on it if you were a comic book collector at the time.

This book is popular now, to be sure. It also has many of the book’s primary characters first appearance for the series in Spawn #1, namely Spawn, Wanda Blake, Malebogia, Sam and Twitch. Todd McFarlane is a master storyteller and supreme artist in my humble opinion. Spawn is probably his most compelling character; put simply a soldier given the power to avenge his murder from the grave. But now Spawn #1 has a speculative heartbeat after 28 years! How profitable are the return trends on this soldier of Hell?



Short-Term (YTD)

Title Grade Last Sale CGC Census Return
Spawn #1 9.8 $119 7960 +15.6%
9.6 $76 3310 +34.8%
9.4 $49 1540 +14.7%
9.2 $32 726 +17.2%

336defa5544fe50350e8180e406a6bfd-150x300 From the Speculative Pit of Hell: Spawn #1Conclusion

With positive returns in high grade across the board Spawn #1 is looking strong, shockingly so. After all, the book was nowhere a few years back. I picked up at least 10 copies when McFarlane had just a mention of a potential movie for $3 each, back about three years ago. Now they are going for upwards of $120 with CGC grading in grade 9.8. Further, they have a return trend between positive +15-35%. The scary thing about this book is not the rollercoaster ride straight up, but the ensuing ride straight down after the movie. Where will this book be then?

Spawn #1 certainly isn’t a huge key even at these return numbers. That said, it is nice to see the next generation pop a little bit and bring joy to collectors and speculators alike. My advice is to cross your fingers and hope for further upside; then jump out of the rollercoaster before the decent! In terms of Hell-Spawn this puppy is hot and rising from the grave.

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Brett The Comic Guy May 29, 2020 - 11:42 pm

What added to this success not only was great art and story but there were no gimmicks. Spawn 1 did not have any variants, multiple covers but also stated there would be no reprints. Compare that to the others issues that sold as many.

Norman Robinson III June 3, 2020 - 12:03 am

I didn’t know Spawn #1 had no reprints. That is good news for moderately holding its small value. Thanks, Nam

Steven Johnston May 30, 2020 - 8:44 am

I Collected Spawn back in the day and was impressed with the art but not so much the story telling like most early Image books. Todd’s writing was probably the best of the original group. There were a ton of these babies printed. I am glad I picked up but was not impressed at the value and the direction of the book. Amazing that people are paying good money for them now. If you can get top dollar get it while you can because it won’t last

Norman Robinson III June 3, 2020 - 12:04 am

Yeah, best to sell extra copies prior to movie release. Thanks, Nam


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