Ghost Rider, Knull, and even Black Panther saw their keys take a dive in the Hottest Comics rankings this week, but does this indicate a new norm? The Hottest Comics list gets updated every week and I report on these cold comics every week – so if you missed out on previous weeks, check them out.
The short answer is no, it does not. What we are seeing is what happens when characters either oversaturate the market, such as the case with Knull, or are underused in the comics. It also is a sign of what happens to key issues when live-action rumors don’t pan out and those inflated prices begin to wane.
With that in mind, here are your five Comics Cooling Down for the week of November 4.
191. MARVEL SPOTLIGHT #5 (-155)
Sure, Ghost Rider’s first appearance (at least the Johnny Blaze version) is seeing hard times at the moment. This could be because the MCU rumors have quieted. It also could be in part from Marvel Comics not giving him much of a spotlight these days. Either way, collectors are not high on Ghost Rider at this time.
Could this change overnight? Certainly.
There is no question that Marvel Studios will find a way to give him an MCU rebirth in spectacular fashion. When that happens, this key issue will rev its engines and make a huge surge.
163. FANTASTIC FOUR #52 (-128)
This was the biggest surprise among the falling comics. Black Panther has been hot for years, and his first appearance was a monster key even before T’Challa was introduced to the MCU. This week, it dropped from the top 60 and is in danger of reaching that dreaded 200th position. What is happening?
Like many comics that lose positions, this issue may have been too expensive for many collectors. The other factor is that the rumors point to Shuri becoming the new Black Panther in the live-action universe, which could have investors paying more attention to her rather than T’Challa.
108. X-MEN #4 (-60)
This issue shot through the ranks like a rocket for weeks. It even reached as high as third just 14 days ago on the Hottest Comics list. That ongoing surge in popularity was mostly due to the live-action rumors surrounding Omega Red, who debuted in X-Men #4 in 1992.
Where it started was from “leaked set photos” supposedly from The Falcon and the Winter Soldier Disney+ series. That turned out to be concept art and unused footage from Deadpool 2.
Still, the false rumor was not enough to cool off X-Men #4. After all, logically Omega Red would be perfect for Falcon and Winter Soldier. Afterall, he’s a Russian secret agent perfected by a clandestine organization that creates super soldiers. If that’s not a resume for a Winter Soldier villain, what is?
What we could be seeing is the inflated values of X-Men #4 reaching its ceiling. If Omega Red appears or is alluded to in the Disney+ series, then it will take off again. For now, collectors are taking a break.
67. VENOM #3 FIRST PRINT (-55)
Once again, Knull’s high-priced keys are falling on hard times. Not only did the first print of Venom #3 take a hit, but the third print fell 49 spots and is in the 68th position.
What is going on? Only months ago, these were two of the most coveted keys on the market.
As I have written before, this is not necessarily an indication that fans no longer like Knull. I see two parts to this issue. First, Knull’s first appearance and all the subsequent printings have simply gotten too expensive for many investors. At this point, those ballooning prices have finally plateaued, and they are beginning to slowly fall off the pace. Many collectors are likely taking a step back and letting the market sort itself out before investing in a high grade Venom #3 of any printing.
The other factor here could be fatigue. Comic publishers are notorious for playing the hot hand too often. In this case, Knull has his own crossover, “The King in Black,” and we are even getting Knull-themed covers as variants for many issues. It may just be too much of a good thing, and comic fans could need a break from the God of the Symbiotes.
37. MARVEL SUPER-HEROES SECRET WARS #8 (-29)
The first appearance of the symbiotic suit that would become Venom took a tumble this week. Seven days ago, this issue was nestled firmly inside the top 10 on the Hottest Comics list at number eight. The most recent data shows that collectors are beginning to shy away from Venom, at least for one week. Does that mean that the original symbiote is losing his appeal? Will Marvel back away from its current cash cow? Not hardly. This is just one week, and SW #8 is a staple inside the most collectible comics. While it is surprising to see it nearly drop outside the top 40, there really is no reason to panic and have a Venom fire sale. He will recoup from the fall, and it will likely happen within the next week.