If you collect Pre-Code Horror, PWCC has several great pre-code horror books up for auction in its weekly auction ending on March 26th. Here are a few below to consider, but they have several more!
When E.C. Comics published Crime SuspenStories #22, it became the poster child for the need for censorship of comic books with its graphic depiction of a woman’s severed head. Used by Estes Kefauvfer and Frederic Wertham in public campaigns, Crime SuspensStories #22 and other books like it led directly to the Comics Magazine Association of America adopting the Code on October 26, 1954. Comic books up to that moment qualify as Pre-Code Horror, but any comic that has the Code seal, such as Uncanny Tales #29, the first issue to have the seal on its cover, cannot.
While many comic book collectors provide a lot of attention to comics related to the MCU and DCU, not as much attention has been given to Pre-Code Horror books, their historical significance, and also their rarity. While Crime SuspenStories #22 is well-known, there are many other issues that investors may want to take a closer look at. Here are a few that PWCC has up for auction this week.
Crime SuspenStories #18 (EC, 1953) CGC 4.0
E.C. Comics published item 12710, a CGC 4.0 copy of Crime SuspenStories #18, in 1953 just a year before it published its infamous Crime SuspenStories #22. Although not nearly as graphic as #22, #18 does share important characteristics of many Pre-Code Horror comics, including a young woman being held captive as well as the trope of the lurking terror on the staircase.
Like most Pre-Code Horror books, this book is exceptionally rare. CGC lists only 95 Universal blue label copies on its Census. It’s been more than five years since a recorded sale of a 4.0 copy. The last one sold for only $125. As of Sunday morning, the current bid for this book on PWCC is $105.
Crime SuspenStories #25 (EC, 1954) CGC 4.0
E.C. Comics published item 12712, a CGC 4.0 copy of Crime SuspenStories #25, in 1954 the same year it published Crime SuspenStories #22. Like issue #18, #25 also features a woman who is unaware of an armed assailant who lurks just around a corner. Because this is a common trope that led to the adoption of the Code, it may be relevant to the value of this issue.
This book is even more rare than #18. CGC lists only 78 Universal blue label copies on its Census. Not surprisingly, it’s been more than eight years since a recorded sale of a 4.0 copy. It clearly does not come up for sale very often. The last one sold for only $69. As of Sunday morning, the current bid for this book on PWCC is $105.
CGC 5.5 Wonder Woman #196
Auction item #8877, a CGC 5.5 copy of Wonder Woman #196, technically isn’t Pre-Code since it was published in 1971; however, it actually presents an unpublished story from the Golden Age that may have been originally written Pre-Code. Like many Pre-Code Horror covers, this issue features other common themes such as bondage, and lurking unseen threats.
As of Sunday morning, the current bid for this book is only $7.
Do you collect Pre-Code Horror books? Which ones are your favorites? Please let us know in the comments section below!
*Any perceived investment advice is that of the freelance blogger and does not represent advice on behalf of GoCollect.