The Quintuple Key Book: Crisis on Infinite Earths #4

by Norman Robinson III

crisis-four-194x300 The Quintuple Key Book: Crisis on Infinite Earths #4The Crisis on Infinite Earths series in the 80s was groundbreaking for the time. It destroyed Multiverses, introduced new characters, and killed off others in a blink of an eye in the DC Comics Universe. The issue Crisis on Infinite Earths #4 introduces three characters, spotlights the death of a major character, and showcases the second appearance of that sarcastic street sorcerer John Constantine. All in, this comic has five keys in one book hence the quintuple key title of this piece. It holds the first appearance of Lady Quark, Doctor Light, also who can forget Lord Volt (no not the car)? The Monitor, a major character in the Crisis story dies and John Constantine has his second appearance (Source: KC); Constantine keys will continue to grow in value. Why? The hype and media scuttlebutt has Constantine playing a big role in Justice League Dark for WB in the future. 

It was the beginning of a new age for comics; during the Copper Age. It also marks the end of one of the most prolific ages of comic books: the Bronze Age. In some ways, this adds a sixth key in that the book is the beginning of a new era in comics.

In this Crisis series, most people go for the death of Supergirl or the Flash, as collectible keys. But John Constantine is a solid DC character with a true antihero vibe. He will be even more popular with another movie or potential series (if done well). If you liked the movie, John Constantine, by Keanu Reeves then you probably can follow where I am going with this relatively inexpensive key. Constantine originally appeared and was created by Saga of Swamp Thing genius of Alan Moore. Yep, the same guy that created The Watchmen. How do Crisis on Infinite Earths #4 and Saga of Swamp Thing #38 compare and contrast? Where does each stand from on the spectrum of trend returns? Crisis on Infinite Earths could catch the unholy fire of popularity and get, well, hot as Hades!

crisis-four-194x300 The Quintuple Key Book: Crisis on Infinite Earths #4Crisis on Infinite Earths #4

This second appearance has some debate as to if it is actually the second appearance, according to sources, the Crisis on Infinite Earths #4 went on sale two weeks prior to Saga of Swamp Thing #38. The Crisis series was the beginning of big emerging plot lines and sweeping changes to both DC Comics and Marvel. Marvel countered with Marvel Secret Wars and the artistic arms race of who could build better and bigger multiplot storylines was on.

But our interest in this book is primarily as an investment and quintuple key. These multi-key books usually turn out as good investments, I am thinking of Iron Man #55 as I write this.  Crisis on Infinite Earths #4  was written by Marv Wolfman with the art of George Perez ably making sense of very dense plot lines. It has at its apex of value the second appearance of John Constantine. In contrast, we will also review Saga of Swamp Thing #38  a close runner up and compare it to Crisis on Infinite Earths #4. Which has better returns?

Title Grade Last Sale CGC Census Return
Crisis on Infinite Earths #4 9.8 $75 +74.6%
9.4 $10 +28%
Saga of Swamp Thing #38 9.8 $41 +13.6%
9.4 $39 +7.1%

swampy-38-197x300 The Quintuple Key Book: Crisis on Infinite Earths #4Conclusion

Obviously in this matchup of the game Crisis takes the lead. It is, after all, a multi-key and at nearly double the price of Saga and four times the return trend, the Eldritch writing is on the wall (ahem). The Crisis is a superior copy to own. Crisis on Infinite Earths #4  has greater future potential as a multi-key, has the true second appearance of Constantine and ushers in a new age. It is the book to beat and should be in your box. Don’t wait for your inner demons to issue forth, buy a copy now, and jump inside your pentagram of speculation or be torn asunder by the forces of Hades.





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