If you asked me two weeks ago what I thought of the comic market I would have continued on about how I felt the Guide had gone up too much and the market was in a state of confusion. I also would have shared with you the views I had been receiving from several dealers I had spoken with. I’d been hearing how soft the market is and how CGC comic book sales on Ebay were slowing down and that the end is near!
I am very fortuitous to be writing this report during our Memorial Day weekend because I can share a very different story with you. The market seems to be adjusting to and finding it’s way at a very expeditious pace. This last month has been very good for us and the end of it seems to be turning many other dealer’s frowns upside down. We have sold several keys this month including a Very Good All American Comics #1, a Fair Captain America #1, an Amazing Spider-Man #1 in Very Good+ and Very Fine-. Runs of mid to high-grade Bronze Age Fourth World titles and tons of 50’s horror comics in various grades have also been selling well. Showcase comics have been selling at a very brisk rate as well. Sales have also been increasing on non-key mid and low grade Marvels and DC comics. I am very impressed with the state of the market and am looking forward to seeing what is going to happen over the summer.
For anybody who collects new comics you know how much fun Wednesdays can be. New book day is a great day, as I still collect I love seeing all of the new covers and fresh NM/MT 9.8 comics on the shelves at my local comic store. Finding a new read or talking to another collector about a book I am thinking about jumping into is all part of the fun.
A big thumbs up goes to Marvel Comics Editor Joe Quesada for greatly improving the story quality and over all marketing at the House of Ideas. Marvel, for those of you who do not know is only printing to order. This is fun and profitable for collectors and speculators who can hunt down scarce issues and actually make some money off of new comics. Please understand these are good reads and I am not saying just go out and buy and sell new comics to make money- read them, that is what they are made for! I believe his artistic choices on Spider-Man and X-Men will continue to help increase readership among people who are already collecting comics.
The only area I would say publishers need to improve on is getting people who do not read comics to start, which leads me to my next statement. If you love comics as much as I do introduce someone younger to comics today! Don’t rely on the publishers alone. Don’t wait until next week or until you have some time- go out and give a kid, nephew, niece, cousin or friend a comic. Heck, give him/her a trade paperback, a graphic novel a CGC graded NM+ Silver Age key- OK maybe I am going a little too far now (I think that last comment will get me more email responses than my entire market report last month did). Seriously though, tell him/her about your favorite hero’s beginnings. If your kids are too young to read, read some Disney comics to them before bedtime. If we do not all contribute to our hobby’s growth believe me it will continue to shrink. I do believe there will always be comics but I also know that comic readership is dwindling. It is up to us save our hobby! Avenger’s Assemble or something!
I have been doing a tremendous amount of traveling lately. I was just telling one of my Metropolis Team Members how I feel, with the advent of spring I have turned into a new person. I want to travel more. In the winter I just want to hibernate like a big, old bear-but now I am alive!
Last month I was in Charlotte for my Brother Jerry’s wedding and then I went to Oakland for the Wonder Con. I just got back from LA about a week ago. Steve, Ben and I traveled out to meet with several video game publishers and developers at E3-the biggest Video and P.C. gaming convention in the world. If you have never been, it is about as twice as large as San Diego and extremely exciting. The booths are elaborate and filled with all of the upcoming games. The best thing- you can play all of the games. It is like being in a giant arcade with a magic quarter that gets you free access to all games (I should say almost free, there is a $175.00 admission fee). Ben, who I mentioned above, is new at Metropolis. He is heading up Metropolis Entertainment as our Director of Marketing. For the last year we have been developing a science fiction property to be marketed as a video game, novel, comic book, collector card game, animated series, and toy line. The property is called HunterNation. I am very happy to announce that the novel will be written within the next 6 months. It is being written by NY Times best selling author Michael Stackpole. While I have always loved buying and selling comic books I have always wanted to craft a story that would make an impact. I will keep you apprised of the goings on as they unfurl themselves.
While at E3 I was checking out the truly incredible Spider-Man video game created by Activision. As I watched the full motion video of the Shocker and Vulture I noticed several props from the upcoming Spider-Man movie they had on display. The Green Goblin’s fabled Pumpkin Grenade and a Spidey Web Shooter were on display behind a wall of plexi glass. I am so excited about the movie being made. Ever since I became a dealer there was talk of a Spider-Man Movie and pretty soon it will be out! I am confident that it will be a good movie as I like Sam Raimi’s directing and Willem Dafoe, who was amazing in Shadow of the Vampire. I believe Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst will both do very good jobs in their prospective rolls, as they are both good actors and look the parts.
The rest of this market report will be dedicated to things outside the comic book world so if all you are looking for is info about comics you need not read any further.
Thanks for all of the positive feedback I received about my comments on vegetarianism and compassion toward animals in my last market report. I received countless emails and phone calls from people who thanked me for making them aware of things they were ignorant of and I also got to meet many comic collectors who already shared my views and/or are vegetarians.
I did however also get several emails and phone calls from members of our comic book collecting community who were offended by what I wrote. I would like to make a public apology to anybody who was offended by a statement I wrote in last months market report about the similarities between treatment of people in concentration camps during WW II and the treatment of animals in factory farms. I am so deeply sorry if I hurt or offended anybody in any way. The last thing I wanted to do was make anybody think I was trying to trivialize the horrors of WW II. I hope anybody who was hurt by my statement can accept my apology. If you go back and read what I wrote in its entirety I hope you can see I was merely trying to do good and educate. By conjuring up horrific images of the most horrible treatment man has placed on his fellow man in recent history I was hoping people would realize what is going on in factory farms today and take notice and take a stand. My statement on equivalent atmospheres was not an attempt to compare the value of human life to animal life. For any of you who know me on a personal level you know my compassion is not limited to animals. I care tremendously about people and that is why I wanted to address this situation. Believe it or not even if I do not know you I wish you nothing but peace, love and prosperity in your lives. Please also understand I am in no way saying what I wrote is not true and if you need to see proof as to what I wrote I will send you video tapes on what is happening on factory farms and in "scientific research laboratories"-you can judge for yourselves. In the meantime here are some very graphic images on the following links (these photos are GRAPHIC IN NATURE and are not for the faint of heart):
If any of you are interested in finding vegan products including foods and clothing please check out-
My efforts to improve life on this planet are sincere and I will continue to use this forum to do so. Actions that harm others are everyone’s business. Murder, child abuse and cruelty to animals are all matters for public concern. Our society now encourages meat-eating and factory farming but history shows that society also once encouraged child labor and many other practices now recognized as wrong. Once again, please understand I am not saying animal cruelty is more important or just as important as child labor issues I am just saying it is wrong and exploiting under age workers is wrong.
We are all interconnected on this planet and we all can help to make it a better place. Even though we lead very busy lives maybe we can all find some time to pick a cause we believe in and fight for it. Now I am not saying we all have to be animal rights activists but I am sure if you look you will find a cause that speaks out to you. As a wise man once said "no one can do everything, but everyone can do something".
For instance, I recently saw a special on modern day slavery on the news. I was shocked to learn that trade in black Africans continues today. People are being sold into slavery for as little as $14.00. The News program went on to state that people in the United States have been trying to adopt Sudanese children to help them avoid this tragic life but the Sudanese Government has stated that they would rather see their citizens starve to death than to be taken from Sudan. New efforts are being made to send money and supplies instead of attempting to adopt. There is a lot more to this story and I hope you will use the following links to learn more and lend a helping hand in helping to stop this atrocity.
This next link contains many written depictions of what is done to punish slaves and may not be for everybody to read:
A book was recently written by a man named Samuel Cotton who traveled to Sudan and learned firsthand about what is going on, take a look:
In closing I would ask you all to remember that I am trying to get the word our and create a positive change in the world. I am not perfect and will probably make some mistakes on the way- I hope you will please bear with me and help me along the way. If there is a cause that is close to you please send me information and I will put it up. I realized recently that I had to do more with my life than simply try to gain wealth for myself. I realized that I needed to help my fellow man and other sentient beings. I have a wonderful forum in which I can reach thousands of people a month and I have decided to do just that. Be well. God Bless.
A very sincere,