The Modern Age dominated the secondary comic market in recent days. Practically anything tied to Venom and Let There Be Carnage saw a spike in sales volume, and Lethal Protector #5 led the charge in this week’s Hottest Comics’ movers and shakers.
Besides two symbiote keys picking up over 900 positions each, the other big story was Boom! Studios’ Something is Killing the Children. Writer James Tynion IV has been on fire lately, and his other creations, The Department of Truth and The Nice House on the Lake, have been big hits with horror comic fans. It all started with SIKTC, and collectors are on the hunt for every edition they can find.
Not to be ignored, the debut of the Thunderbolts kept pace as fans wait to see if they will indeed get their own Disney+ series or even an MCU movie. Pulling up the rear, we have a Silver Age classic, X-Men #2, testifying to the popularity of all the X-keys on the secondary market.
The Hottest Comics are based on sales volume, not current values. What you see here are the 1,001 best-selling comics for the past week. Out of those issues, these are the five that gained the most spots since the last update, which makes them the hottest of the Hottest Comics.
On that note, let’s dive into the data.
As Donny Cates walks away from Venom with this week’s Venom #200, we see the entire symbiote mythos going in a new direction. Under the watchful eyes of Eddie Brock, the symbiotes are now free, and they are exploring not only Earth but the entire universe. That could mean that some of Eddie’s old enemies will be rejoining the comics to torment both him and his son, Dylan.
In the pages of Lethal Protector #5, we saw the first appearances of Phage, Riot, Scream, and Lasher. Considering these are some of the first symbiotes outside of Venom and Carnage to grace the panels of Marvel Comics, it makes sense that collectors would target their collective debut. The other factor is Sony’s Venom-verse. Riot already appeared in the first movie, but Let There Be Carnage could feature one or all of his symbiotic siblings. That would push fair market values for this issue into the stratosphere.
At the moment, the 9.8 has a 90-day average of $121, though this week saw two sales that approached $200. For a 9.6, the FMV dips to $61 over the past three months, so there is a considerable difference in price. On the plus side, that means even the most casual of symbiote fans can have a high-grade copy without paying those inflated 9.8 prices.
Tynion struck gold with this one. SIKTC has been one of the hottest titles since it debuted in 2019. The horror title has been among the top-selling independent comics for the past two years, and the momentum is not slowing down. The standard cover of the first issue routinely sells for over $1k, and the most recent sale hit a remarkable $1,175.
SIKTC has become a bonafide phenomenon, and those high FMVs have sparked an interest in every edition that hits the local comic shop shelves. The subsequent printings are drawing major figures as well, and all the way down to the fifth print earns anywhere from $350 to nearly $500. Then there is the sixth print that last sold for a whopping $900. All that said, it is no wonder that the foil edition gained so many positions. With these huge numbers for all those SIKTC #1s, collectors are buying up any and everything they can get their hands on.
Released last November, the LCS Day foil edition is the newest of the SIKTC covers, and it is already earning increasingly larger price tags. The most recent sale from this week was for $150 for a 9.8, and one has sold for as much as $295 already this year.
Shriek is on her way to live-action, and I predict we will soon see her in a trailer for Let There Be Carnage. That should set off a chain reaction of big prices for her first appearance in Spider-Man Unlimited #1, and it appears collectors are already preparing for just that.
For those unfamiliar, Shriek is the psychotic girlfriend of Carnage. She rose to fame as more or less a sidekick during the mega-popular Maximum Carnage crossover in the early 1990s. Since then, the title has become legendary among symbiote fans, it is clearly the inspiration for the Venom movie sequel, and it all started with this issue.
Here’s another prediction: Shriek could get her own spinoff movie. Sony has been frantically building its Venom-verse, and she could be in line for her starring role if her character is a hit with fans when Venom 2 hits theaters. That would send copies of SMU #1 skyrocketing.
Last year, the 9.8 averaged $81, which was actually down from 2019’s FMV of $94. Just this week, one copy sold for $280, and that is the highest it has brought this month.
Something is happening in the MCU, and the final episodes of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier point toward the Thunderbolts moving into the spectrum. That is why their first team appearance in Hulk #449 has remained on the collecting radar in recent months. Of course, the Thunderbolts MCU rumors were prominent last year when the word spread that a live-action Thunderbolts series was imminent.
Since then, there have not been any official new developments, but FATWS definitely put the pieces on the board. Whether or not Marvel Studios will position Baron Zemo and his crew as the Thunderbolts or possibly the Dark Avengers is anyone’s guess at this point, but it seems more likely that the former would be at the top of the list. That is why collectors are after Hulk #449.
Despite the high sales volume, the FMVs for the higher grades have been dipping. Back in May, the 9.8 hit a record-high $1,150, and it reached the four-figure point six times. So far this month, the high sale has been $729, which is respectable for a comic that averaged $288 a year ago.
Is there something happening with the Vanisher that I don’t know about? For the past few weeks, X-Men #2 has been one of the hotter comics on the index, and it once again took off like a rocket in just seven days. What gives?
Obviously, the big selling point for this issue is that it is the second appearance of the original X-Men, namely Cyclops, Jean Grey/Marvel Girl, Iceman, Beast, and Angel. It also happens to be the second issue in the legendary X-Men franchise. With all the talk of them coming to the MCU in the not-too-distant future and the renewed interest in their comics after Jonathan Hickman’s current run, it has made all the X-keys among the most popular titles on the secondary market.
As a sign of the X-Men’s renewed popularity, look at the 3.5 X-Men #2. Two years ago, you could have purchased one for $436 on average. Last year, that FMV rose to $768. While that is a colossal leap in value, it is nothing compared to the 2021 numbers. Just this month, that same grade drew a price tag of $1,210.
What do you think about this week’s Hottest Comics analysis? Who do you think will show up on the Hottest Comics list next week? Let us know in the comments!