Top Three Comics: Silver Age

by Norman Robinson III

120642_85d238d056caf508823db07a22038020be216fc8-200x300 Top Three Comics: Silver AgeDuring the Silver Age, Marvel Comics created more iconic superheroes than ever before, or since. Two of these characters are this month’s top Silver Age comics: Silver Surfer and Black Panther. Both of these legends were born during a time of great cultural upheaval with songs like “California Dreamin” by The Mamas and the Papas (number one song of 1966) or “Hey Jude” by The Beatles (1968) playing on the radio. The cultural changes were so extreme we are still dealing with the fallout today.

In its wake, this artist revolution left us with two ultimate superheroes, a cosmic herald and the “Once and Future King” of Wakanda. Last month they both dominated the GoCollect rankings in the top three. The top three comics for the Silver Age last month are worth a look. Speculators trade Modern Age books, move in and out of Bronze Age but many own the Silver Age for long-term investment. Is it “surf’s up” for speculation on the Wakandan King and the Cosmic Herald?





85be36640369e8f1da9ef99e243ad2193bed9932_hq-300x218 Top Three Comics: Silver AgeThe Silver Surfer #1

This late Silver Age book has spiraled up significantly since Disney talked about acquiring the rights to the FF from 21st Century Fox. This particular book has sold as high as $27,000 in September 2017. This is Silver Surfer’s origin story, the first issue to self-titled series, and first appearance of Zenn-La and the beautiful Shalla-Bal. Created by the late, great Stan Lee, with John Buscema, and Gene Colan (art). The total outstanding CGC Census books is a little high at 4,056. But that should not deter you as Silver Surfer is worthy of at least three movies, especially if his owner Galactus shows up.



120642_85d238d056caf508823db07a22038020be216fc8-200x300 Top Three Comics: Silver AgeShort-Term

  • Grade 8.5 $1,680 last sale 1-27-20 returns negative -3.8%
  • Grade 7.5 $1,125 last sale 2-11-20 returns positive +9%
  • Grade 5.0 $500 last sale 2-11-20 returns positive +11.6%
  • Grade 1.8 $239 last sale 1-19-20 returns positive +21%

The short-term returns have been mixed, to say the least. However, it is very positive that grade 1.8 has a +21% return. As speculators, we always want to see the lower grades participate in a run-up. Short-term or long, you can’t beat The Silver Surfer #1.



118895_b43dd89462df26cff964448fad8611e21ac50a40-1-197x300 Top Three Comics: Silver AgeFantastic Four #52

There is something to be said about buying what you like. The bottom line, you will never be disappointed in returns or speculation as you enjoy the comic book. That aside, my kid bought one of these back 8 years ago for $30 and now it is worth $850! That is a lot of Qautloo to spend in one Galaxy, even for a Marvel comic book. The CGC Census has about 4,072 books in inventory for FF #52, much like its counterpart above, these are not great but the long-term results outweigh the CGC Census blues. Can the Black Panther’s first appearance in Fantastic Four #52 still make your inner speculator purr? Good kitty. What are some of the more recent returns for this ferocious feline?


  • Grade 7.5 $1,500 last sale 1-27-20 returns positive +10.5%
  • Grade 5.5 $510 last sale 2-5-20 returns positive +12%
  • Grade 3.0 $280 last sale 2-11-20 returns negative -21%
  • Grade 1.0 $197 last sale 2-13-20 returns positive +63.5%!!!

“Always bet on black…” especially when he wears a vibranium indestructible suit and has the power of the Black Panther! If the trend is our friend then Black Panther has great numbers in the very low and very high grade, but it looks like the middling grades are losing a little value short-term. Darned speculators! Before you get your whiskers in a bunch, remember there is plenty of catnip in the lower grades. Check out that grade 1.0 return, yep enough to make you meow at the moon.


118643_ec1fe51db751f05915131fc54530a9fc6f73dcbc-200x300 Top Three Comics: Silver AgeFantastic Four #48

The first appearance of the Silver Surfer and his master Galactus is a big event in the Marvel Universe. This major book was much cheaper three years ago. Now it is expensive and in my humble opinion a little too pricey. Stick with the lower grades on this bad boy, there is still money to make, after all, we haven’t even gotten a confirmation of an FF movie at Marvel Studios. This book has 5,700 CGC Census books outstanding, and who knows how many at CBCS or beyond. Still, it is profitable long-term and short-term Fantastic Four #48 has had “Cosmic” results?


  • Grade 9.0 $5,302 last sale 1-29-20 returned negative -10.3%
  • Grade 8.5 $5,930 last sale 1-19-20 returns positive +17%
  • Grade 6.5 $1,999 last sale 2-13-20 returns positive +19.6%


The Fantastic Four #48 is king for the last month of all Silver Age comics, as an investment, it is stellar. The short-term numbers are mixed but relatively positive. Between this and The Silver Surfer #1 I prefer the 1968 book SS#1 as it has more room to run up and isn’t as pricey. The nature of icons is that they eventually are torn down and replaced. But in the case of Fantastic Four #48, it is not going anywhere soon and is a safe long-term bet, obviously.

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