Robot 6

Pristine copy of ‘Action Comics’ #1 sells for record $3.2 million

action1The finest known copy of Action Comics #1, featuring the first appearance of Superman, sold late this afternoon on eBay for a record $3.2 million. It’s the first comic to fetch more than $3 million at auction.

The previous record price of $2.16 million was paid in 2011 for a copy of the same comic once owned by actor Nicolas Cage. While both are rated 9.0 by the Certified Guaranty Company, the Cage issue had “cream to off-white pages”; this one is considered to be in pristine condition. They’re the only two copies of Action Comics #1 to receive that high of a rating.

This copy was acquired several years ago in a private sale by Darren Adams of Pristine Comics in Federal Way, Washington, and stored a temperature-controlled vault. He said the original owner bought the comic  from a newsstand in 1938, and then kept in a cedar box for about four decades until a local dealer in West Virginia purchased it in an estate sale. The issue then passed to a third person, who held onto it for 30 years.

Adams, the comic’s fourth owner, said he recently turned down an offer of $3 million, opting instead to sell it on eBay. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation, which is dedicated to curing spinal cord injury.

An opening bid of $1 million was submitted Aug. 14 within four minutes of the auction’s opening; by the midway point of the 10-day sale, the price had risen to $1.95 million. Bidding reached the $2 million mark on Aug. 18, after which activity slowed for a few days.

There are thought to be only about 30 unrestored copies of Action Comics #1 in existence. The issue, which also included the first appearance of Zatara (overshadowed by the introduction of the Man of Steel by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster), sold on newsstands in 1938 for 10 cents.

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Comments

17 Comments

Is the winner of the auction going to release their name, or stay private?

I like comics as much as the next guy, but man… That is such a HUGE waste of 3 million dollars. You can go get that same issue for about $55 along with 39 others in the Golden Age Superman Omnibus!

If you’ve got 3 million to spend on a comic book then you’ve got 3 million to waste. Lucky…

Jesus, you could get many first edition books for the price of that one comic.

First edition of Dune is only $10,000. That seems cheap by comparison.

First edition LotR trillogy is only £24,000.

Let’s see… In the 90s bill gates bought da vinci’s handwritten codex for 30 mil. It’s pretty surprising that a mass produced comic book sold for 1/10th the price of a handwritten notebook by Leonardo da Vinci. I guess that’s the power of pop culture.

If you can spend 3 million on something, then you’re not going to miss 3 million.

Andy E. Nystrom

August 24, 2014 at 8:52 pm

YouTube has a video of the comic. I wouldn’t pay 3 million but it’s definitely a gorgeous looking 1938 comic. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4WY7Y0SIa40

Agreed with Andrew (no relation) about the Golden Age Superman Omnibus. Very afford way to read over 750 pages of Superman’s earliest appearances in chronological order. IIRC I paid around $40/$45 Can for my copy and it also looks great.

People buy items like Action #1 as investments .. not to read. Due to it’s rarity in top condition .. the new owner will sell it for a profit sometime in the future.

What it is, stocks and bonds go up and down .. risky. Rare items like Action #1 only go up in price.

Of course, first you have to have $3 million dollars or so. :-)

Somebody has far too much money. What a fucked up system. Seriously.

This is a flip. It will sell for 5-5.5 in ten years. Excellent investment.

Wow, there sure is a lot of bitterness about someone who purchased the definitive item of a past time we all enjoy. AC#1 is a piece of history, just like anything else. Good for whoever it was who bought it, it’s a rare item to have. I don’t get such resentment and jealousy.

some one really has a a lot of cash lying around and also a really really big comic book and superman lover to pay 3 million for the legendary action comics number one . as for who bought it that will proably due to privacy issues unless the buyer starts later saying they forked over the 3 million. will never be revealed.

Bleeding Cool is reporting that Comic Connect is the buyer. Haven’t found corroboration on that, yet. And they might have purchased it on behalf of someone else, for all we know.

We’re not actually mad that someone with alot of cash just bought a giant piece of Americana, are we? It’s art at it’s finest.

What would the ebay fees be? I see fees that max out at $250, but things like this must be percentage based…?

beast of burden

August 26, 2014 at 11:27 am

how come in a society that says “do what you want” “live as you want” and “its your CHOICE…and no one should tell you otherwise”…ESPECIALLY within the comics community….

….we still have comments like the following from Jim on August 24, 2014 at 10:32 pm “Somebody has far too much money. What a fucked up system. Seriously.”

really??? Who are you to judge? So you believe rich people are evil? So you want to take this persons money and do WHAT with it???

So you know “how to spend money” better than they do?

Your just a pathetic jealous and envious person suffering from the Cain Syndrome.

I know….”if you were rich you would show the world how to spend money well.”

Can only imagine how overdrawn your accounts are from living beyond your means.

This is why Cos-Play and Movies are killing (comic) cons (souls). This should’ve been a top story going into the weekend, “Get a look at the one that started EVERYTHING, in MINT condition” instead all we hear about is costumes and movies…

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