I’m happy to be back again bringing you the latest quarterly installment of Undervalued Comics in 2022. Books that, in this high-priced and news-sensitive market, actually seem to hold strong future value potential. If you missed any of the previous iterations of Undervalued Comics, you can find them here. With all eyes laser-focused on all things Multiverse, Batman, Thor, Moon Knight, and Black Panther right now, what books are slipping through the cracks to the point of being undervalued as we move into Spring 2022? Let’s find out.
Marvel Super-Heroes #18 (1969)
We are about to be inundated with Guardians of the Galaxy content, and this first appearance of the team from 1969 is still way too cheap on any resale market. Just in the next year and change, we will get Thor: Love and Thunder, the Guardians Holiday Special, a Groot television show, and the next iteration of a feature Guardians of the Galaxy film.
I hope you’re ready for a healthy dose of Star Lord and friends.
Marvel Super-Heroes #18 is a book that is constantly slept on. It’s often seen as a disjointed title that jumped from Captain Marvel to Medusa to Black Knight to Guardians to Dr. Doom before finally settling in as a book that reprinted other popular titles. That inconsistency often tags the books with a lower-tier level, keeping the prices down. And they have certainly gone down this past year.
Every grade between 7.0 and 9.0 has the same or lower 30-day fair market value compared to their 12-month FMV. The same is true for lower grades. CGC grades 4.5-6.0 all share similar stories. If you wanted this book in a 7.0 grade, you would be getting a bargain right now. Four of the five recorded sales in the GoCollect database for 2022 were for less than $500.
Batman #22 (1944)
“Wait, you mean the Golden Age version? The one that is 80 years old and features the first cover appearance of Alfred Pennyworth and the first solo Alfred story?” Yes, that’s the one. Just because a book has a higher baseline fair market value than most other books doesn’t mean it can’t still be undervalued. Besides all of the Alfred material, this is one of the first 90 or so appearances of Batman. Plus. it’s drawn by the legendary Dick Sprang and Bob Kane.
You know and I know that everything Batman is white-hot right now. With the success of the February release of The Batman and the sequel being officially announced, the 80-year upward trajectory of all Batman comics should continue its sharp spike instead of just a steady climb. So then why is this book so undervalued compared to every other issue surrounding it from that timeframe?
There are just 172 blue-label CGC copies of this book in existence, with the mass of them centered in the 4.0-7.0 grades. Sales are understandably limited with such low supply, but why then have two 5.0 copies of this book sold for under $600 in the last two months when the same book sold for $640 one year ago? To be able to own one of the first 25 issues of Batman in a mid-grade at these prices is just stealing, in my opinion.
A grade 7.0 copy (of which there are just 32 higher-graded copies in the world) sold for only $1,200 less than a year ago. Even at over a grand, do we think the value of this book will go down as we approach the 100th anniversary?
Secret Invasion #1 (2008)
So much of the attention of nerd culture right now is consumed by the many next great things. We have Moon Knight, She-Hulk, Thor, Ms. Marvel, Dr. Strange, Black Panther, The Marvels, Flash, Stranger Things, Obi-Wan, and Ashoka, just to name a few. Projects not due until later in 2023 or 2024 might as well be decades away at this point. Medium-term future Marvel projects – even ones that have been teased – are just not part of the zeitgeist right now. That means books associated with Blade or Secret Invasion are flying way under the radar.
The Disney+ TV series Secret Invasion is coming, and there is a lot we know about it. Starring Samuel L. Jackson, Ben Mendelsohn, Emilia Clarke, and Cobie Smulders, the plot will focus on a Skrull invasion of earth and Nick Fury’s attempt to stop it. Like much of the recent on-screen Marvel intellectual property, this series should draw heavily from the comic book source material, which means the dirt-cheap Secret Invasion #1 will start getting some love sooner rather than later. It may not be on the undervalued comics list for long.
As a modern book, all of the value lies at the top of the grading scale, and 9.8 in particular. In the last month, four different copies of a CGC 9.8 sold for $200 or less. The 30-day fair market value is $166 while the 12-month value sits at $253. This book has PLENTY of room to grow when we start seeing news or trailers about the show. It’s a fantastic way for young or rookie investors to get into comic book speculation. And it’s also a fascinating read if you want to pick up the whole series. You can get the whole raw set on eBay right for $60.