The top three most popular issues of any comic book age are occasionally set by the movies scheduled to come out, or already recently opened. I have often referred to this as a catalyst for growth in comic profit. The only books that seem to ignore this premise consistently are the Golden Age and recently published comics. All the other comic ages show a strong reaction to silver screen openings and TV series productions. With a hot title set to come out in the future, watch the stampede to that title. The Modern Age books seem to fit this transactional analysis to a tee. The third book of the most popular Modern Age comics is a classic example of this phenomenon, the Amazing Spider-Man #361. The hype and focus on Venom, whose movie is to open in November, spurred over 100 sales in slabbed books in the last two months (GoCollect). But does this equate to profits? How about the other Moderns?
Third Place: Amazing Spider-Man #361
The son of Venom first appeared in Amazing Spider-Man #361; his name is Carnage (definitely not a vegetarian). This comic book was created by David Michelinie (script) and Mark Bagley (pencils) in 1992. I literally have seen so many copies of this book it is horrifying. But, the one quality all speculators have in common is a strong stomach. So despite the fact of this comic books ubiquity and general overproduction it still sells. Now if you purchased this title back in 2008, you probably paid maybe $20 for near mint, perhaps less. Now, ten years later a near mint minus is selling for $120 FMV. That is a six-fold increase in its value. However current return on (9.2) near mint minus is only 6.5%. The reason I believe merely is overproduction. Yes, there is an uptick in price, but the volume available is diluting the current returns. My suggestion is to look for this third place top modern pick, in any of your old comic boxes you have not checked. Bottom line Amazing Spider-Man #361 sells, but don’t let it carnage your bank account trying to acquire one.
Second Place: Amazing Spider-Man #300
This book is a tremendous Modern Age comic to own. Yes, many were produced, and it seems like everyone holds a copy. But it has three keys in one: it is the first full appearance of Venom, first issue inked by Todd (Money) McFarlane, and finally, it is Spidey’s 25th-anniversary issue! Any way you cut it, this is three for the price of one. You have got Spidey fans, McFarlane fans and Venom fans all rolled into one investment enchilada. Amazing Spider-Man #300 was written by David Michelinie with McFarlane reimagining the art of Spidey for us all! Unlike the third-ranked Modern Age, this comic ASM #300 is ranked number two Modern and has the profits to prove it.
Currently, Amazing Spider-Man #300 in near mint to mint condition (9.8) has returned a whopping 21.4%. The cost of this book in (9.8) is $2500 FMV. This is the Modern Age book to own. Of all the Modern Age books this cover resets the industry take on Spider-Man covers. David Michelinie is to be commended for creating a truly frightening superbeing in Venom. With Tom Hardy playing Venom you can count on at least three movies, maybe four, and tons of merchandise. Not to mention, all the media hype for at least the next five years. My Spidey-sense is tingling, buy Amazing Spider-Man #300 if you don’t already own it.
Numero Uno: The New Mutants #98
The “Merc with a Mouth” constantly jokes in battle almost like Spidey except for darker, more adult themes. The New Mutants #90 however, is no joke. Currently, this popular character has ridden the wave of movie media madness to the top of the Modern Age comics, numero uno, so to speak. Deadpool 2 came out in May, and many fans loved it. I thought it was a little more juvenile than the last one. But I had to admit, the scene where Shatterstar was blended by rotor blades had me in stitches. I almost choked on my popcorn. The last reasonable sale of this comic was in near mint (9.4) grade for $350 on 7/18/2018 (eBay). The movie premiere percolated over 160 sales in the last two months alone (GoCollect).
The New Mutants #98 is the first appearance of Deadpool created by Rob Liefeld. This is one of those characters who will be around in four decades from now. Literally, a millennial favorite Deadpool is so original that he seems to come from an earlier era like the Bronze Age. Unfortunately, he has a Modern Age background. This book is very similar to ASM #300 above, with the same level of returns and the high number of sales over the last couple of years. This is a buy and hold, long-term investment. Unlike many Modern Age comic books this will always be worth some cheddar (money).