Not all first appearances are created equal.  Many times valuable first appearances are ignored because of the the comic book they first appeared in.  Other times, they do not appear that important. The following are a few whose first appearances are not being valued as they are, for one reason or another.

The first appearances are viewed as secondary characters.  They only become relevant when a writer and artist team realize their potential.  The characters may also have significant comic book history but have not yet been utilized in a TV show or appeared in a movie.

Their first appearances thus are not as expensive as other perceived important characters. These first appearances offer great buying potential to the savvy collector and investor.

Marvel Comics

Conan the Barbarian #1

Please explain how a 9.0 CGC copy is selling for less than $1,000 at the time this article is being composed? Robert E. Howard created this character almost 100 years ago and he is still going strong. It might be a safe bet that a feature film and/or television series is eventually going to happen.

The only reason this mega hero's first appearance is not priced as it should be is because he has more appeal in movies than in traditional comic book fare.

Marvel Two in One #54

There are two key first appearances in this book with both Titania and Screaming Mimi debuting here. This offers investors more bites at the apple.   The reason this book is forgotten is because it appears in the lesser of the two Marvel duo pairing books.

The Thing's title is always looked down upon by most hobbyists when compared to Spidey.  This slight offers value.  Screaming Mimi has morphed into Songbird.  Imagine being able to afford her first appearance in a 9.8 for around $275. This character has had a good run and yet her potential has only scratched the surface. Untapped potential is what makes this book a nice target.

Deadly Hands of Kung Fu #22

This book has the first appearance of Jack of Hearts.  I have written about him before and recently a reader made a comment recommending this book.  People in the know understand the reason this book is ignored is because the magazine bias that exists in the market.

Marvel Magazines have produced some quality first appearances like Star Lord and Rocky Raccoon (Rocket), and White Tiger to name a few.  The irony is unless they appear in a movie it is rare for them to realize their true value because people hate magazines. A 9.2 has a current FMV of $240.  That kind of proves the point.

Supernatural Thrillers #5

The Living Mummy first appears in this comic.  Reviewing the sales data for a 9.4 CGC copy shows an FMV for $500.  Horror issues always are in vogue.  First appearances too.  This character was also a founding member of Nick Fury's Howling Commandos.

That concept has some potential in the MCU, but more importantly, Bronze Age horror comics are just now starting to garner attention.  This is a secondary character that many ignore when targeting Bronze Age Marvel horror characters.  Take advantage of that fact.

DC Comics

New Gods #1


A Jack Kirby book with multiple first appearances like Orion, Metron, Highfather, Kalibak and others should never be described as undervalued.  This part of the DC Universe has great potential and yet a 9.6 right now is having a hard time cracking the $600 mark.

If the New Gods ever appear in a movie this book will explode.  It has better potential than the Eternal ever did. Jack Kirby's art and multiple first appearances are what have brought several fans already to this book.

Our Army at War #151

This book has the first appearance of Enemy Ace with artwork by Joe Kubert. A 9.0 has a GoCollect RVI number of $600.  A great concept of creating a character that is the enemy and telling stories through his eyes.

This perspective makes the reader see things in a different light.  War comics are always sought after by many different hobbyists.  Great artist. First appearance. Tough war cover.  This book has it all.

Fury of Firestorm #24



The series has rarely drawn any interest from fans.  The exception is this issue because it contains an original story with the first appearance of the Blue Devil. A 9.8 CGC can be purchased for under $150.  This is even after he has already appeared in the Swamp Thing television series.

The character's concept has legs and yet again the potential of the character is largely ignored.  Fans keep clamoring for Justice League Dark.  He has already been a member of one DC Comics magic/horror team so why not have him migrate to another?

Justice League of America #107

The first team appearance of Freedom Fighters featuring Uncle Sam, Phantom Lady, The Ray, Black Condor, Doll Man and the Human Bomb appears in this JLA issue.  Many of these characters' Golden Age first appearances are too far out of reach for 95% of the hobbyists out there.

This book is a nice layup for those who still like these characters. A 9.6 CGC copy sold in September 2021 for $349.   The FMV for a 9.4 is currently $240.  These characters have potential for usage in future DC Comics television and/or films, but they also have significance to Golden Age collectors.


Evil Ernie #1

Keep beating the drums on this issue.  Two first appearances in a rare book with around 900 in the CGC census.  A 9.6 will cost around $975 if the issue can be found at all.  These characters would a make great horror film. Fans and investors always forget about independent keys to their own detriment.

This is a book that will appear on day one of a comic book convention and be gone before more people even enter the door. Investors and collectors always forget independent publishers still have a following in the hobby and they are diehards.  The problem with this book is that it was published at a time in the hobby many people would like to forget. Do not be that person.

Men in Black #1

These characters made their first comic appearance in Aircel comics in January 1990.  Since then they have appeared in comics from Malibu and Marvel Comics. The film series may have been comedic but if ever rebooted the films/tv shows could take a darker tone that could attract a new target audience.  In addition, all the talk about aliens in the news could make this a very topical book to own.

The FMV for a CGC 9.6 copy is only $350. That is not bad for a book that has less than 150 total copies in the CGC census.  If you ever see this issue buy it.  In August 2023 a 9.4 copy was sold at the start of the month for $104 while around three weeks later another copy was sold for $225.  Could this book be heating up?

Battle of the Planets #1

Gold Key has had many titles that offer great value.  Battle of the Planets has the first American appearance of G Force (Gatchaman).  Rumors are that they are getting a movie treatment.  That is nice but this issue offers more to hobbyists than a potential movie.  Japanese animation popularity is gaining steam among younger fans and this is a great transition book from comics to anime.  Older fans remember the cartoon series that came out during their youth.

A  9.4  copy currently has an FMV of $600.  This is not a bad price for a key book with great potential.The cover is a nice throwback to the cartoon series and many a fan at conventions or shops are drawn to this book based upon cover appeal alone. This book is again from a genre that is sometimes ignored by a large group of fans, but that does not mean it is not valued by the passionate ones that do appreciate this book and others like it.

Jason vs. Leatherface #1

These are not true first appearances of the characters. The first appearance of Jason was a nonrecognizable version in another Topps comic while Leatherface first appeared in a Northstar comic. The books are ignored by the vast majority of comic book and horror fans.

The team-up of two legendary horror comics is what fans loved.  A 9.8 has an FMV of around $200 at this time.  The irony is that raw copies of the whole series are scooped up at a premium which makes this FMV  a bargain.  This is a horror comic that is in demand because of both the genre and characters.  The fact that the team-up occurred in a Topps Comic is a nice oddity that only adds to the desirability of the book.


Investment quality books have largely been what characters have appeared on film or television.  The problem is that prices rise on these books once those treatments are announced.  The key to finding value is being ahead of the curve and evaluating books that have ignored potential.

The previously mentioned books have that type of potential even if they never appear in a film or on a TV show.  The reason they are ignored is because the attention of investors and collectors alike is elsewhere or there is a perceived defect with where the first appearance occurred. That is a faulty way of thinking.  Be bold and give those books a try.

“Out with the old. In with the bold.” Anonymous

*Any perceived investment advice is that of the freelance blogger and does not represent advice on behalf of GoCollect.