Exceptional Example of Action Comics #1 Could Reach $750K at Heritage Auctions

DALLAS -  An unrestored copy of Action Comics #1 - featuring the first appearance of Superman and considered a cornerstone of pop culture - could sell for as much as $750,000 in Heritage Auctions’ Comics & Comic Art Auction Aug. 4-6 in Dallas.

“It’s pretty tough to beat this in the comic world,” said Lon Allen, Managing Director of Comics & Comic Art at Heritage. “This is the highest-graded copy we’ve ever offered at Heritage so naturally we expect bidding to reach our already high expectations.” 

The copy is graded 5.5 by Certified Guaranty Company (CGC). “The colors on the cover of this copy are particularly bright, and the staples are rust free,” Allen said. “It really "pops" in the new CGC holder. It's a striking copy that absolutely "wows" when you hold it in your hand.”

The first appearance of Superman appears at auction alongside the first appearance of Spider-Man as an  8.5 CBCS-graded copy of Amazing Fantasy #15 signed by his creator Stan Lee is expected to sell for $125,000+. 

The selection of original art includes a true rarity among the otherworldly art of master illustration artist Frank Frazetta. At the Earth’s Core, 1974, the original cover painting produced for a paperback edition of a novel by Edgar Rice Burroughs, could exceed its $900,000 pre-auction estimate. The mystical painting appears at auction on the heels of Frazetta’s The Norseman, which Heritage auctioned for a shocking $454,100 earlier this year.

Bernie Wrightson’s original cover art for Swamp Thing #1 (DC, 1972), not only stands as one of the most iconic horror covers ever produced, it is also marks the first cover appearance of the half-man-half-plant version of Alec Holland, a character which resides permanently in DC Comics canon (est. $150,000). Another example of Wrightson masterful depiction of Swamp Thing is the wraparound cover original art for DC Special Series #2 from 1977 (est. $50,000+).

Additional examples of coveted covers include the dramatic original art for Silver Surfer #13 by John Buscema and Dan Adkins (est. $50,000+) and Adkins original art for Strange Tales #164, depicting Doctor Strange (est. $50,000+).

Vintage and contemporary newspaper comic strip art features an original Calvin & Hobbes daily comic strip dated Jan. 6, 1987. The four-panel strip by Bill Waterson is a classic example of Calvin attempting to pull one over on his favorite stuffed tiger (est. $50,000+). A Flash Gordon Sunday comic strip art dated April 21, 1935 is an example of the period’s large-size art with an image area of 19 inches by 29-1/4 inches (est. $75,000+).

Additional highlights include, but are not limited to:

·         Paul Smith’s original cover art for Uncanny X-Men #165 (est. $40,000+). 

·         Startling Comics #49, Mile High Pedigree (Better Publications, 1948) CGC NM+ 9.6 (est. $50,000).

·         Batman #11 (DC, 1942) CGC NM 9.4 white pages (est. $75,000+).

·         Michael Golden Doctor Strange portfolio envelope cover original art (est. $20,000+)

·         Gil Kane and Joe Sinnott’s original cover art for Defenders #19 (depicting three heroes in trouble: Hulk, Doctor Strange, and Power Man) from 1975 (est. $20,000+).

·         A Charles Schulz Peanuts Sunday Comic Strip Original Art dated Jan. 27 1963 (United Feature Syndicate, 1963), with classic images of Snoopy dozing on his dog house (est. $20,000+).

Heritage Auctions is the largest auction house founded in the United States and the world’s third largest, with annual sales of more than $900 million, and 950,000+ online bidder members. For more information about Heritage Auctions, and to join and receive access to a complete record of prices realized, with full-color, enlargeable photos of each lot, please visit HA.com.

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