Art imitates life and vice versa.
After realizing that his apartment has been burglarized losing TVs, computers, and other valuables, Dr. Sheldon Cooper runs frantically into his bedroom to check to see if his most prized possessions had been stolen. What is he looking for? His comic book collection.
The story line of the CBS hit TV sit-com The Big Bang Theory follows the antics of three physicists, an engineer, and a waitress/wanna-be actress. An aspect of their social life is the pursuit of collectibles from Star Wars action figures and vintage video games like Ms. Pacman to science fiction movie props and comic books. The characters spend every Wednesday night at their local comic book store and search for additions to their growing collections.
A recent happening in the world of comic book collecting would have Sheldon, Leonard, Raj, and Howard in a tizzy.
From the celebrated collection of actor Nicholas Cage, the comic book, Action Comics No. 1, featuring the first appearance of Superman sold for a record setting $2,161,000 recently. Of course, this is not just any old comic book –it is the holy grail of comic books. It is a rare copy in superior condition—receiving a 9.0 grade for quality—and it is one of only 100 copies in existence. The Cage sale broke the previous record for the piece of $1.5 million. Cage originally purchased the comic book in 1997 for a mere $150,000.
Like the storied life of Superman, Cage’s copy of this special comic book is equally fascinating. The famous comic book, part of a collection that included Batman’s first appearance in Detective Comics No. 27, was stolen from Cage’s home in 2000. According to reports, Cage’s comic books were displayed in museum quality wall mounted frames in his home. While the stolen Detective Comics No. 27 has yet to be recovered, the Action Comics No. 1 was found earlier this year in an abandoned storage locker in southern California.
If you have comic books stored around your house, they have value and interest in the sales arena. Here are some tips to maintain the value of these comic books from bygone days.
Don’t handle them too often as the oils from your hands will deteriorate the paper and printing.
Keep similar comic books with key characters (Batman, Superman, Spiderman, etc.) together just as you would any other related set or collectible.
Protect your comic books in plastic covers, acid free solander storage boxes or museum quality frames. Avoid wooden crates and cardboard boxes which off gas and may damage your collections as well as attract insects.
Don’t store your comic books in areas where temperature or humidity fluctuate. That means no damp basements and no hot attics.
Display your comic books and any other printed materials in dark areas as sunlight will fade them and over time, devalue your objects.
Judging from this groundbreaking multi-million dollar sale of Action Comics No. 1, it might be time for Dr. Sheldon Cooper amd his friends to have his comic book collection appraised by an expert. Why, yes… I’m available.
Ph.D. antiques appraiser, author, and award-winning TV personality, Dr. Lori presents antique appraisal events nationwide. Dr. Lori is the expert appraiser on Discovery channel’s Auction Kings airing Thursdays at 9 PM. Visit www.DrLoriV.com, follow www.Facebook.com/DoctorLori or call (888) 431-1010.