It’s time to get heavy with this week’s Oddball as we put the spotlight on one of Dark Horse Comics’ first stars, Concrete.
This week’s Oddball Award goes to Dark Horse Comics once again. A couple weeks ago, The Mask took home the honors, but this time it goes to one of the company’s oldest characters, Concrete. Think of him as the Fantastic Four’s Thing, only he doesn’t save the universe and fight crime. No, Concrete is just an ordinary dude whose consciousness is trapped in a body literally made of stone.
The name of the game in modern collecting remains those live-action and animated adaptations. Over the years, Concrete has been rumored for many movie treatments, but it never seems to work out. After seven years without any news on that front, it seems collectors have forgotten about him. Today, let’s remedy that.
When we say that Concrete is one of DHC’s first original characters, we mean it. In fact, he debuted in the company’s first comic. Published in 1986, Concrete was featured in a backup tale that was printed in black and white. Of course, most of Dark Horse’s early endeavors were in b/w, and that includes the interior pages of the first Aliens comic.
Another reason to own this issue is the guy on the cover, Black Cross. With so many properties getting the live-action treatment, this would be a great story to tell on either the big or small screen. Now would be the time to invest when you can own a graded 9.8 for about $350.
The next time readers saw Concrete, he had been elevated to the status of cover model. In modern collecting, owning the first cover appearance can be as coveted as the first appearance. Sometimes, it’s even more alluring, depending on the artwork. This was a big moment for the character and helped set him on the road to comic fame.
Sales for Dark Horse Presents #2 have been few and far between, at least for the graded variety. A graded 9.8 hasn’t traded hands online since a copy brought $100 in 2011. The only slab to swap owners online in 2022 was a 9.0 that sold for $26 in January.
A year after making his debut in Dark Horse Presents, Concrete would star in his first self-titled series beginning with Concrete #1. The title would go on to become an underground hit, earning several awards during its run, including the Eisner Award for Best Continuing Series as well as Best New Series, which should have you interested in giving the classic a read yourself. The issue itself was popular enough to warrant a second printing, which is another comic to put on your wish list.
Need a slab to call your own? Again, there aren’t many sales listings to reference. The most recent transaction came last month when a graded 9.2 sold for $85. There are no records for any 9.8s being sold online, but a 9.6 sold for $22 in 2019.
A GRAY OUTLOOK
As Marvel Studios, Warner Bros. Discovery, and Sony Pictures dig deeper into the world of superheroes, more studios are going to look for alternative characters to adapt for the screen. Concrete is a great choice in that regard because his is not a superhero origin story.
That would make for a much more personal story to be adapted for a movie or series, and that leads me to believe he will eventually make it to live action.