Hottest Comics: Biggest Movers 1/6

by Matt Tuck

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Marvel Comics reigned supreme in this week’s Hottest Comics rankings with the top five movers all coming from the “House of Ideas.”

Rocket Raccoon, Starfox, Shang-Chi, Black Bolt and his Royal Family, and Scott Lang saw their key issues make plenty of noise this week. Thanks largely to the MCU, each comic saw gains that were approaching the 1k mark. More importantly, the surge in popularity pushed these all into the top-15 Hottest Comics, and three of those even cracked the top 10.

What are the Hottest Comics? These are the 1,000 top-selling graded comic books for the past week according to eBay. The numbers will change day to day, which means these are the current figures as of the time of this writing. This does not reflect the fair market values but instead is strictly based on the number of sales.

Let’s dive into the data and take a closer look at the movers and shakers of the comics world.

incredible-hulk-271-194x300 Hottest Comics: Biggest Movers 1/62. INCREDIBLE HULK #271 (+997)

Rocket Raccoon was thrust into the spotlight this week. The “trash panda” and his first appearance climbed almost 1,000 positions and very nearly overtook this week’s #1 ranked seller, Werewolf by Night #32, for the overall top spot. 

What is driving the impressive sales for Hulk #271? That is likely tied to the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. James Gunn, who is still finishing up The Suicide Squad for DC, has not begun filming GOTG 3, but we know there will be a different team lineup from the previous installments. However, Rocket will certainly be a major character in the film. Who knows? Maybe we could get a Rocket MCU spinoff at some point in the future.

Throughout 2020, the top-selling grade has been the 9.4. Buyers snatched up 57 copies at that grade, helping it average $217 for the year. 

One of the better bargains for a Hulk #271 is the 6.5. Although it does not have the same shine as a 9.4, this mid-grade copy has averaged just under $100 for the past 90 days. That is up from the $78 FMV it earned in 2019, so the values are on the move.

Iron-Man-55-cover-194x300 Hottest Comics: Biggest Movers 1/68. IRON MAN #55 (+991)

This comic continues to bounce back from a post-Endgame sales dip. 

After Thanos was snapped out of existence in Endgame, the speculation surrounding Iron Man #55 took a nosedive. Typically, that is the trend. The buildup for an MCU character sends shockwaves through the speculation market, but once that story is told, the first appearance wanes in popularity. 

With Thanos out of the MCU, why is this issue making such gains? I point toward The Eternals and the possibility of Eros/Starfox joining the ranks.

The hot rumor is that he will appear in Eternals, but he could also show his face in the Disney+ She-Hulk series since she and Starfox have been an item at times in the comics. Where did Starfox make his first appearance? He was briefly seen in Iron Man #55 alongside his big brother.

Since the fall, all but three grades – the 5.5, 5.0, and the 4.0 – have gotten more expensive compared to the 2020 averages. One of the big winners (for sellers, at least) has been the 9.0. At the end of 2020, it had fallen to $1,031 on average. The past 90 days have seen it spike, with the FMV jumping to $1,217.

If you are looking to save some money, keep your eye on that previously mentioned 4.0. At the moment, it is averaging $350. That may not seem like a bargain, but consider that a 3.0 last sold for $340, and even an incomplete 1.5 sold for $175 in November.

Marvel-Special-Edition-15-200x300 Hottest Comics: Biggest Movers 1/610. SPECIAL MARVEL EDITION #15 (+989)

It is not hard to believe that Special Marvel Edition #15 has cracked the top five. With a blockbuster new movie on the way, why would Shang-Chi’s key issues not be in demand? What is more interesting is that it nearly dropped off the Hottest Comics list in the first place.

Last week, once the dust from the week’s totals had settled, Shang-Chi’s first appearance was listed at #999. It bounced back with a vengeance this time around, scoring 989 moves up the rankings in the process. 

What is not to love about this comic? After years of speculation, the Master of Kung Fu is on his way to the silver screen (pandemic willing), and this is a comic that will only get hotter. Once the first trailer is released, fans will get hyped, and that will inflate prices even more.

SME #15 didn’t exactly need a reason to get more expensive. A 9.8 sold for an impressive $6,000 on December 13, and another hit a record-high $6,600 in July. 

Most collectors have not been willing to part with quite that much for a copy. The biggest seller has been the 8.5, which sold 46 times and averaged $486 in 2020. However, its 90-day FMV has reached $537, and the most recent sale was for $550 on January 1.

Inhumans-1-192x300 Hottest Comics: Biggest Movers 1/612. THE INHUMANS #1 (+987)

Against all odds, the Inhumans are making a comeback. Surprisingly, their biggest seller was not the team’s first appearance, but the first issue of their self-titled 1975 series. 

Only three years ago, Marvel did their best to replace the X-Men and mutants in general with the Inhumans. On the screen, there was the ABC Inhumans live-action series, and the comics all but forgot mutants and force-fed readers more Inhumans than they could stomach. Then it all went up in flames after the series was a dismal failure. 

Once Marvel Studios gained the film and television rights to the X-Men, those Inhumans keys fell flat. After that, all the talk centered on the mutants, and the Royal Family was hung out to dry. Now it seems collectors have changed their opinions about those Inhumans comics.

If you want a copy of The Inhumans #1 to call your own, you are in luck. Relatively speaking, the only grade that commands high prices is the 9.8, which currently averages $337. That happens to be down considerably from 2019’s $433 FMV. 

While the 9.8 has struggled, the 9.6 is on the way up. That grade has averaged $147 over the past 90 days. In 2019, this was a $126 comic. That is not a huge gain, but it is an improvement nonetheless.

marvel_premiere_47-194x300 Hottest Comics: Biggest Movers 1/613. MARVEL PREMIERE #47 (+986)

We all knew a third Ant-Man film was on the agenda. For the most part, only hardcore Ant-Man and Paul Rudd fans were overly excited. After all, the second movie, while entertaining, was not setting the woods on fire, so to speak. Then came the Kang rumors, and suddenly Ant-Man 3 became much more interesting. 

Since then, Kang has been confirmed for the third Ant-Man flick, which has set off a new round of speculations and earned a spot on our Hottest Comics list. With the time-traveling villain appearing in the upcoming movie, will Marvel Studios take the opportunity to establish the Fantastic Four in the MCU? That has put collectors back on the trail of MP #47.

With the Ant-Man 3 hype getting hotter by the month, the excitement is giving Scott Lang’s first appearance a massive sales boost. 

The FMVs for Marvel Premiere #47 were divided last year with about half showing gains and half dropping below 2019’s averages. Over the past 90 days, only the 6.0, with its $50 FMV in that span, has not shown values above 2020’s figures. The most popular grade has been the 9.6, which has sold 44 times in the past year and nine times in the last three months. In the last 12 months, it averaged $242, the lowest in two years. Since the fall, that 9.6 has escalated to a $296 FMV. The last sale was for $320 in December, which happened to be the highest sales price of the year.

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