Independent comic books are vastly underappreciated by investors, yet these books are highly sought-after by collectors.  Investors should find these books and invest in them now, before others realize their full potential.

Marvel Comics are the hottest comic books on the market.  The MCU is the driving force behind investor interest in these books. Savvy investors realize that there are other books that have investment potential.

Multi-Media Horror Hero

Seeing Patterns

I am a big fan of TMNT.  TMNT has been featured on television shows and appeared in blockbuster movies. The first comic book appearance of multi-media stars is highly sought after by investors.  Collectors seek these books out and investors can cash in on this interest.

One book on my "always search list" is Caliber Presents #1.  This is the first in-story appearance of the Crow.  The FMV for a 9.6 graded CGC copy has an FMV of only $625.  Investors will never find a copy at that price. The reason is that this book is a severely undervalued book collectors buy but do not sell.

Print Runs Matter

Another reason this book sells for multiple times the FMV is because of the book's low print run.  Independent comic book companies had very low print runs.  Publishers have to make money and cannot afford overprinting books.  As a result, publishers produce only those books they know will sell.  DC Comics and Marvel can afford large print runs but not these smaller publishers.

Another way publishers saved money was by producing anthology books.  Anthology issues were a way for publishers to introduce several characters to determine what the market wanted.  One drawback to these books was the lack of character promotion on the cover.  Many collectors know who the Crow is but do not know the cover of the book that introduced the character.  I want everyone reading this to close their eyes and picture the first appearance of Wolverine, Venom, and Harley Quinn.  Can you do the same for the Crow, a character who has appeared on the small and large screen?   This book has still room to grow and will explode if another film or television show is introduced.


If you can not find the first appearance there are a few other alternatives.  You can always go with Crow #1.  This is again a harder-to-find book, but the FMV for the same grade as his first appearance is three times my recommendation.  I still think that the book is undervalued even at that price.

Up, Up, and Away

The Disney Formula

The MCU machine drives the back issue market.  Amazing Spider-Man villain Hydro-Man was a forgotten character until investors incorrectly assumed he would be making an appearance in the MCU.  His first appearance took off.  Disney has a way of making characters relevant.  That makes me question why a comic book with the first appearance of a character that appeared in a Disney movie is so affordable.  This book has fewer than 600 books total in the CGC census with an FMV of less than $100 for a 9.6 copy at the time I am writing this article.  The book I am referencing is Starslayer #2,  the first appearance of the Rocketeer.

Print Runs Again

I have mentioned previously that a book's print run matters.  Independent publishers have finite resources.  They must be smart to make money.  These companies usually print enough copies to meet their orders.  The 1980s had people buying multiple copies of first issues, but not as many copies of the second issue.  A character that makes a first appearance in the second issue of a series is already benefiting from a smaller print run. The Rocketeer has this going for him.

A Master at Work

The late Dave Stevens is a forgotten artist to many comic book investors and collectors.  That is a tragedy.  His work rivals those of many "hot" artists.

The Rocketeer was his creation. Dave Stevens'  covers have seen a renewed interest among collectors and I have tracked many of his books rising in the hot GoCollect rankings.  His work is easily identifiable and appreciated so when I see his books rising I know it is because of his covers and not because of collectors seeking to buy issues for a title run.  His collectors are very intense and are willing to pay when they find his work.

I have encountered many fans of Dave Stevens who search for this issue because it is not as common as one would think.   In addition, this is one of two characters that he is known for among fans. I have bid against fans of his artwork and it makes it difficult when you are buying a book not only for his work, but also because it is a key issue.

Reboot the Price

Disney recently announced their intention to reboot the series. I saw a small spike for the book after that announcement.  This was inconsequential when I compared it to other books that were optioned by lesser-known studios.  Disney has a track record for properties and if this character takes off, the sky is the limit.  Investors flock to the MCU and Star Wars universes for investment opportunities and yet ignore this Disney property.  I would do so at your own risk of missing out.

Global Influence

Anime Pick

Investors have seen the interest collectors place on their past.  Comic books about toys and cartoons that used to be ignored have exploded in value.  The Transformers, Godzilla, Rom, G.I. Joe, Thundercats, and other toys have their comics sell now at prices I never dreamed possible. I then wondered, was this the case for a book that was inspired by an anime series?

I watched the Robotech television series that wove three distinct anime series into one television show for the American audience. What I never realized when I was younger was that a comic book was also released on the cartoon.  Macross #1 captures all the magic of the series in the comic.

Print Run Numbers Again?

Macross #1 was published by Comico.  Comico was a company that I could only find at one local comic book shop with any degree of frequency.  That meant low print runs.  I then looked at the CGC census just now and I see that the total population is fewer than 700 copies.  People are not hoarding raw copies because there were not that many to begin when they hit the racks.  The FMV for a 9.6 copy is $270.  I have chased lower-grade raw copies that sold for a lot more.

Local is Relative

I have been high on this book for a while.  I have recommended it to anyone that will listen.  The reason is that the comic book hobby and investing have gone global.

US investors have recently expressed interest in foreign editions of their favorite comic books.  Macross #1 is a foreign edition of a Japanese anime show so it has global cross-appeal.  There is also the multi-media factor. Recently, the American company that holds the US rights to distribute the show has been given the rights to distribute a possible film in Japan.  This news makes this low-priced comic a buy in my book.

Independent Comics for Independent Investors

Collectors have long chased independent comic books.  These collectors have a passion for these books. The problem is that these unique buyers have been ignored by investors that choose instead to follow mainstream opportunities.  The irony is that while these collectors may be few, many times their passions far surpass those of mainstream collectors.  Independent comic book collectors will pay multiple times the FMV of a book because they know that low print runs may make purchasing that book not an everyday occurrence. My advice is to add some of these books as well as other independent books that have a strong following.  You will be glad you did.