Hottest Comics for 8/19: Ex Machina Rules

by Matt Tuck

download-61-300x158 Hottest Comics for 8/19: Ex Machina RulesEx Machina #1 had the distinction of being the single hottest comic this week, galloping ahead of the pack with 996 positions gained. Here’s this week’s Hottest Comics analysis!

Welcome to the Hottest Comics, where GoCollect pulls back the curtain to reveal the best-selling single issues across eBay. These figures are not based on fair market value, so the price tags are not what is being ranked here. No, today’s list comes from the sales volume, and these are the five biggest movers and shakers across the 1,001 hottest comics on the index.

Ex-Machina-1-192x300 Hottest Comics for 8/19: Ex Machina Rules3. EX MACHINA #1 (+996)

Overnight, this has become one of the hottest comics on the market. Not only did it border a 1,000-position ascent through the rankings, but it was only two places shy of being the single top-selling comic of the entire week.

The big question is, what is Ex Machina? The title comes from the phrase deus ex machina, meaning, “god out of the machine.” It is a storytelling device whereby authors paint themselves into a corner, and there is a problem the protagonist can’t solve. A miracle then occurs to remedy the issue, hence deus ex machina. Get rid of the god portion of the title, and we are left simply with “The Machine.”

In this case, the protagonist is a former superhero turned mayor of New York City, “the Great Machine” Mitchell Hundred. He is the only superhero of this world, and Ex Machina is told through flashbacks of his life as the Great Machine. 

Last year, it was reported that Oscar Isaac would bring Hundred to life in the feature film, “The Great Machine,” based on Ex Machina. There does not appear to be anything new on the project so far in 2021, but that is not stopping buyers from adding the first issue to their collections.

After the movie news broke, 2020 saw the 9.8 standard cover trek into uncharted territory with a $400 sale on January 20. So far this year, there haven’t been any sales surpassing that mark, but the action is beginning to pick up. The past four sales have not been for any less than $250, including a $290 sale on July 20. This week, there have been two 9.6s to earn $104 and $100.

Marvel-Special-Edition-15-200x300 Hottest Comics for 8/19: Ex Machina Rules6. SPECIAL MARVEL EDITION #15 (+993)

Shang-Chi nearly claimed the top spot among the movers and the shakers. With his first feature film on the horizon, it was a surprise that it fell so low by the end of last week. No matter, his first appearance has skyrocketed this round, and it is firmly established inside the top 10. 

It has been a long time coming for Marvel’s resident martial arts master. The Shang-Chi intellectual property was included in the original deal Marvel used as leverage to fund its studio in the early days of Marvel Studios, so eventually, he would be coming to the grand stage. The early reviews for the movie are very positive so far, and the film is generating quite the buzz. All of this will translate into an increase in sales, especially that opening weekend as fans are hyped for Shang-Chi. That’s when we should see plenty of record-breaking sales.

Like most comics, Special Marvel Edition #15 has not seen any record figures in the past couple of months, but sales have nonetheless been consistently strong. On August 16, two 9.6s traded hands online; one for $3,250 and the other for $3,840.

Even on the low end of the grades, sales have been strong. Back on August 5, a 3.5 sold for $325.

Ms-Marvel-18-195x300 Hottest Comics for 8/19: Ex Machina Rules7. MS. MARVEL #18 (+993)

There’s plenty of hype surrounding Mystique coming to the MCU. She was thrust into the spotlight in the later Fox X-Men films, with Jennifer Lawrence helping to make the character an official franchise headliner. Will she be included in the X-Men’s arrival in the MCU? That is a subject that has spawned numerous rumors.

For the past year, Mystique has been one of several villains speculated to be the antagonist for the Captain Marvel sequel, The Marvels. It is only logical to assume she would appear alongside Rogue, who is also a buzzworthy rumor for The Marvels. In Rogue’s origin, she fought alongside Mystique against the Avengers before Rogue stole Carol Danvers’ powers. That, in turn, led to Carol inheriting a new powerset under the identity Binary. 

Whether or not either Mystique or Rogue introduces mutants to the MCU remains to be seen, but it hasn’t slowed the sales for either of their debuts. In the case of Mystique, some grades are seeing record figures. Case in point, the graded 9.8, which set a new mark with a $2,999 sale on August 10. Then there is the 9.6, a grade that saw it get closer to its previous $1,100 record with a $925 sale on August 13. 

Looking for something more affordable? Check out the mid-grade copies. A 7.5 recently sold for $152, and for $116, you can own a 6.5.

ASM-113-202x300 Hottest Comics for 8/19: Ex Machina Rules18. AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #113 (+981)

Collectors were sending the love to a classic Spider-Man villain who rarely sees his name in lights: Hammerhead. The mob enforcer who literally crushes things with his head generally takes a backseat to the more eccentric members of Spidey’s rogue’s gallery. He did earn a small following as Tombstone’s right-hand man in the beloved Spectacular Spider-Man animated series. Since that show went off the air, not much has been said about the old Hammerhead before now.

In the comics, he is often associated with the crime boss Silvermane, and that could be the reason ASM #113 is getting a sudden push. In recent weeks, Sony has rekindled its romance with the Silver & Black movie that would see Silver Sable and Black Cat have their spinoff adventures. It would not be too drastic to assume that Hammerhead and Silvermane could appear in that movie.

With all the Spider-verse movie news, it is no wonder that this issue has been setting records in 2021. The 9.6, for one, sold for $825 in April, breaking last year’s mark of $385. More recently, a copy brought $685 on August 10.

Since Hammerhead is not one of Spidey’s major villains, you can still find great deals for this issue. Back on August 8, an 8.0 sold for a record $144. That amount is very much affordable for such a high grade. Even if he doesn’t end up in a movie, there is hardly any downside to collecting the Silver Age Spider-Man villain keys.

Spider-Woman-1-192x300 Hottest Comics for 8/19: Ex Machina Rules22. SPIDER-WOMAN #1 (+978)

Another week has passed, and Spider-Woman’s keys just keep climbing. This is a direct result of the increased attention on Jessica Drew now that she has been cast for the upcoming Into the Spider-Verse sequel. Not only is Spider-Woman #1 nearing the top 20, but her debut in Marvel Spotlight #32 is sitting comfortably in the thirteenth spot. 

Putting Spider-Woman into the next Spider-Verse animated installment was one of Sony’s worst-kept secrets. Soon after the original turned heads in 2018, it was reported that the follow-up would be more female-centric. Of course, the first character to come to mind for that movie was Spider-Woman. Here we are three years later, and the news has become official, which will only drive prices that much higher.

Just this week, two 9.8s sold for $599 each. While those are far from the $750 record set earlier this year, that is consistent with most sales since then. If you need something gentler on your budget, opt for the 9.6. For a 0.2 difference in grade, the price drops to below $200. Even better is the 8.5, a comic that last sold for $99 this month.

Did you buy any of this week’s hottest comics? Tell us in the comments!

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