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Now, this is the Bottom 50 of the Top 100 Most Wanted Comic Books by collectors of all ages and from all eras. I could have easily filled the Top 100 with Golden Age and/or Silver Age books, but where would the fun be in that? So if you’re new to the hobby, a veteran like me, or an old timer who remembers the Superman radio show, I hope there’s a few comics on here that would make your list.
So like the list, hate it… print it out and use it as a dart board, but just remember, these are my choices. If you feel your list would be better, go for it. Write a list. I’d love to read it. And chances are, I’ll like it too, cause I love reading about comics… as I hope you do too.
So with all that said, here WE GO!
100 – Harbinger #1 (January, 1992) Valiant Comics
The most wanted Valiant title is also our first entry into the Top 100. Desired with the coupon intact, this issue is also the first appearance of the Harbinger Kids. At over one hundred bucks, it’s a holy grail to many new collectors.
99 – All Star Comics #58 (February, 1976) DC Comics
When All Star Comics returned during the bronze age, it returned with a bang. This issue, which brings in a cool 150 to 180 bucks near mint, has the pleasure of being the first appearance of Power Girl, Earth-2’s answer to Super-Girl.
And be honest, fellas. Earth-2 got the better Super-Girl. Am I right?
98 – NYX #3 (February, 2004) Marvel Comics
Some old timers may not like this next choice, but newer collectors are all over this. The first appearance of Laura Kinney, aka X-23 is a very sought after book in the modern age market. Newbies, ignore the haters. If this is on your list, go after it!
97 – New Teen Titans #2 (December, 1980) DC Comics
The first appearance of Deathstroke is a must have for DC villain fans. At around 120 bucks in Near Mint, this book has a strong following that shows no signs of slowing down. Not bad for a Deadpool clone. Just kidding, just kidding! Don’t kill me fan boys!
96 – Batman: The Dark Knight Returns #1 (February, 1986) DC Comics
Can you believe I originally didn’t have this book on my list? Instead in its place, I had Secret Empire #0. Seriously. Okay. I’m fucking with you, but truth be told, Frank Miller’s take on Batman broke the mold. What can I say that hasn’t already be said. This is quite possibly, the greatest Batman story ever told.
95 – Uncanny X-Men #101 (October, 1976) Marvel Comics
Jean Grey’s transformation into the Phoenix took the former Marvel Girl from a boring Damsel in distress to a kick ass, powerful entity that changed the face of the Uncanny X-Men book for years. BTW, good luck finding a high grade copy for a low price. You’d have a better chance of Kanye West not saying something stupid than finding one high grade copy for under a hundred bucks.
94 – Iron Fist #14 (August, 1977) Marvel Comics
Any self loving X-men fan worth his weight in X-titles will tell you that this book is near the top of their lists — if they don’t already have one. The first appearance of Sabretooth is a true KEY ISSUE in every sense of the word. And contrary to popular belief, he didn’t start off as a Wolverine antagonist, but as a foe of Iron Fist. Crazy, right?
93 – The Walking Dead #1 (October, 2003) Image Comics
Can you feel it? The Comic book “purists” are going crazy over this choice! The Walking Dead?! How can that be? Well Fan Boys, the truth is, this book deserves it’s place on My List. It’s probably the most sought after comic of the last 20 years and well, the Walking Dead TV show only adds fuel to the collectable fire so… at 1,500 dollars RAW Near Mint, it makes the list. And if you don’t like that, make like a Zombie and BITE ME! Or don’t.
92 – Amazing Spider-Man #101 (October, 1971) Marvel
And speaking of scary shit like Zombies, I give you Vampires! To be more precise, I give you Morbius, the Living Vampire! One of the Amazing Spider-Man’s most desirable KEY ISSUES, this first appearance of Morbius is a Five Hundred dollar book in Near Mint. So if your daddy has a good job, beg him for a raise in your allowance, cause this book is gonna cost you.
91 – Marvel Preview #4 (January, 1976) Marvel Comics
This entry may come as a surprise to a few, but many of us have realized a long time ago that Star-Lord is a HOT Character! And thanks to the super-popular Guardians of the Galaxy movies, his first appearance went from a few bucks a few years ago to around five hundred bucks today! Whoa!
90 – Green Lantern #85 (August, 1971) DC Comics
The Drug Issue! Back in the 60’s and 70’s, America had a dark secret it was trying to ignore —- and that secret was drugs! And because of that crazy Comics Code, Comic books were forbidden to mention anything drug related. But after Marvel and Stan Lee decided to ignore the comic code in order to educate their readers on the dangers of drugs, DC followed suit with this classic issue by Neal Adams in which Green lantern shows the Green Arrow that his ward Speedy is a junkie.
But honorable mention must go to Marvel’s groundbreaking issue of Amazing Spider-Man for standing up to the ultra ridiculous comics code.
89 – Tales of Suspense #52 (April, 1964) Marvel Comics
One of the most well known female heroes around, the Black Widow got her introduction in this Tales Of Suspense issue, albeit, not as the hard core female fatal assassin we all know today. Originally a villain, Natasha eventually wove into the hero fabric and became a member of the Avengers.
88 – Journey Into Mystery #85 (October, 1962) Marvel Comics
Loki, one of Marvel’s greatest villains makes his debut right here in issue #85 of Journey Into Mystery. Brother of Thor, son of Odin, Loki is a top five Marvel villain which makes this book a highly sought after KEY for Silver Age fans. And in case you weren’t aware, unofficially, Loki made his Golden Age debut more than a decade earlier in issue #6 of Venus. Oddly, many collectors have largely ignored this fact.
87 – Amazing Spider-Man #121 (June, 1973) Marvel Comics
Amazing Spider-Man #121 was a major milestone during this time for not only the Amazing Spider-Man, but for Marvel Comics as well. To this point, there had been death in Marvel comics, examples being Bucky Barnes and Uncle Ben, but none were at the hands of a Villain. Enter the Green Goblin. He captures Peter Parker’s love interest Gwen Stacy, fights Spidey on top of the Brooklyn Bridge, then tosses Stacy off the Bridge without a second thought. Then Spidey races to save her, shooting his spider-web and grasping Gwen before she hits the water, but SNAP! The stop in her drop snaps her neck and like that, Marvel gave us the death that shook Marvel’s world.
“The Night Gwen Stacy died!”
86 – Vampirella #1 (September, 1969) Warren Magazine
Vampirella is quite possibly the most famous female comic book character this side of Marvel and DC Comics. Her cult following is tremendous. And it seems that every female cosplayer has cosplayed as Vampy at least once during their cosplay career. Vampirella #1 should be on the list of every comic book collector, despite which era of comics you prefer.
85 – Flash #110 (January, 1960) DC Comics
This issue of the Flash is a two for one special. Not only is it the very first appearance of the Weather Wizard, but it also contains the very first appearance of Wally West, the Kid-Flash. As we all know, Wally eventually takes up the Flash mantle after Barry Allen perishes in Crisis #7 and does more than a great job becoming his own version of the Flash. A book that’s very deserving of its spot.
84 – More Fun Comics #101 (January, 1945) DC Comics
The lowest ranked Golden Age comic on this list is More Fun Comics #101, the debut of Super-Boy! Not only is this book significant for the debut of the younger Supes, but it’s also the first Earth-1 appearance of Ma and Pa Kent as well as Smallville and Krypton.
And on a side not, this is the Spectre’s final solo Golden Age appearance until his solo outing in Showcase #60.
83 – Avengers #57 (October, 1968) Marvel Comics
The debut of the Vision is an issue that every hardcore Avengers fan must have. It’s amazing to think that one of the greatest Avengers ever was created by one of their most deadliest foes, Ultron. So if you don’t have this book, check your couch for change then sell your blood (Or your ass), and then get a small loan, cause this book goes for around a cool grand.
82 – Batman #181 (June, 1966) DC Comics
The first appearance of Poison Ivy. Seriously, when Robert Kanigher and Sheldon Moldoff created her, did they imagine how popular this femme fatal would eventually be? Partner to Harley Quinn, a go to for many cosplayers, and one of Batman’s most iconic villains. Poison Ivy’s debut could be ranked higher, but for now, she’s at #82.
And no, her “role” in that crapfest known as Batman Forever did not knock her ranking down a dozen or so spots.
81 – Showcase #34 (October, 1961) DC Comics
The first appearance of Ray Palmer, the Atom! Pre-dating the debut of Hank Pym (Ant-man) by a few months, the silver age version of the Atom has become a staple hero for DC Comics as well as an important character for the DC television universe.
I highly recommend this book and a nice VG would only cost you between a hundred and two hundred bills.
80 – Marvel Spotlight #5 (August, 1972) Marvel Comics
The first appearance of Ghost Rider (Johnny Blaze) set the comics world ablaze (Ahem) leading to the Spirit of Vengeance getting his own title soon after. A very popular character, Ghost Rider has had two mediocre movies with the insane Nicholas Cage and is seriously due for a new movie, MCU style. Little known facts: The Ghost Rider can increase size in battle, but oddly not in the bedroom. Also, his infamous penance stare cannot affect five people — Venom, Deadpool, the Punisher, Zodiac, and the mother of my son.
79 – Batman #232 (June, 1971) DC Comics
Ra’s Al Ghul, one of Batman’s greatest foes debuts in this issue. Leader of the League of Assassins, Ghul has appeared in not only comics, but in the Batman Begins movie (Played by Liam Neeson) as well as several seasons of Arrow.
Little known fact, but Ra’s Al Ghul is the only villain I know to have attended Woodstock. In fact, he met the love of his life there, Melisande. Crazy, but true.
78 – Hero For Hire #1 (June, 1972) Marvel Comics
The debut of Luke Cage was always a popular pick up for collectors of Bronze Age comics, but within the last few years, thanks to the Netflix show, Luke Cage’s first appearance has passed that 500 dollar mark. Originally inspired after the Black Exploitation films of the 70’s, which inspired Quentin Tarantino, Cage has grown into a Hero that represents everyone. Plus, he’s a hero to us guys for shagging Jessica Jones! Yeah, Baby!
77 – Batman Adventures #12 (September, 1993) DC Comics
The most popular DC Character created in the last 25 years is Harley Quinn. This baby is a grail for many modern collectors and paying over 500 bucks for a Near Mint copy is a very common thing. How popular is Harley? She’s been portrayed in the Suicide Squad by Margot Robbie, has like 5 million facebook groups devoted to her, appears in about 100 DC titles a month, and I even got her tattooed on my arm. Seriously.
76 – Amazing Spider-Man #300 (May, 1988) Marvel Comics
I have no idea why older collectors feel this book is overrated. It seriously deserves its spot on this list. It’s Spidey’s 300th issue. It’s drawn by Todd McFarlane. And in case you just got into comic books like yesterday, it’s also the debut issue of Venom! You know… Eddie Brock… Spidey’s greatest villain next to the Green Goblin? This book is a serious grail for modern collectors who don’t mind plopping down 300 bucks for a high grade copy.
And if the Venom movie is even slightly good, expect the prices to soar even higher. Okay. It’s done solely by Sony so…. it’s probably going to suck. Like Spider-man 3 suck. Maybe even worse. Ugh, Sony.
75 – New Mutants #98 (February, 1991) Marvel Comics
You know how I said that Harley Quinn was the most popular character that DC has created in the last 25 years? Well in the last 30 years, Deadpool is the most popular character that Marvel has created…. by a longshot (Though Venom comes close.) In fact, Deadpool is so popular, that when FOX messed up Deadpool in Wolverine 2, Ryan Reynolds and friends purposely leaked some Deadpool test footage in order to rile up fans and demand that FOX make Deadpool the way he was meant to be and not some zombie like, eye beam shooting, mouth sewn copy cat.
Thank you, Ryan.
74 – House of Secrets #92 (July, 1971) DC Comics
I’m going to be honest here. This book is near the top of my own personal holy grail list. The debut of the Swamp Thing was an instant hit when it first came out, but over the years, this book has rightfully taken it’s place among the greatest KEY issue in DC comic book history. Do you think Alan Moore had anything to do with that?
73 – Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen #134 (December, 1970) DC Comics
I remember way back when, when I was just a comic book newbie and I asked my local comic shop owner if he could show me the book in which Darkseid made his debut in. I had some extra cash and I loved him in the Superfriends show so of course, I had to own his first comic book appearance. So the guy turned around and grabbed a comic from his shelf then placed it on the counter. I took one look at it and I was like, “What the fuck, dude?!” I seriously thought he was trying to rip me off. After all, why would DC choose such a lame comic like Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen to unveiled one of their greatest villains of all time? I wasn’t having it, so I passed. A few months later, I found out the guy wasn’t full of shit after all, but when I went back to the store, the comic was gone. Damn! Now I’m not sure if I cursed myself or what, but I’ve never been able to find another copy as good as the one I passed up ever since. Sigh. Comic nerd troubles. Am I right?
72 – Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1 (May, 1984) Mirage Studios
The most popular independent comic book of all time has to be Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1, the first appearance of the Turtles and their rat master, Splinter. This book, which goes for around 5,000 dollars is a grail for many comics collectors. The book had an original print run of 3,275 copies and within months, the comic book community’s demand had caused the book to jump up to 50 times their cover price.
Little known facts: The Turtles loves pizza, but are allergic to gluten.
71 – Green Lantern #76 (April, 1970) DC Comics
Way back when, DC Comics was a company that portrayed the world as basically black and white. There were bad guys doing bad things, but their heroes always defeated the bad guys, giving the world a happily ever after ending each and every time. Then came Neal Adams and his incredible run on Green Lantern. With this issue, the title was renamed Green Lantern/Green Arrow and Adams used the title to show DC Comic readers what the world really looked like. Dealing with racism, drug addiction, and other social commentaries, Neal Adams Green Lantern run opened up many eyes and changed comics for the better.
70 – Iron Man #55 (February, 1973) Marvel Comics
The first appearance of both Thanos and Drax the Destroyer is one of the most collectable Marvel issues of the Bronze age. Before the Marvel Cinemaverse, this issue could be had at an affordable price, but after Thanos was introduced on the big screen and Drax appeared in that super popular Guardians of the Galaxy that I keep hearing about, this book shot up to around the 1,500 dollar mark. Damn! I remember that I once had a NM/VF copy, but I traded it… for Stephan Platt’s run on Moon Knight. That is my second biggest comic book regret… next to my Darkseid regret. Damn! Can a comic nerd catch a break?!
69 – Detective Comics #33 (November, 1939) DC Comics
This is the big one! This is Batman’s origin complete with the first appearances and quick death of Thomas and Martha Wayne, Bruce’s parents! Now I know a lot of collectors, myself included could never afford this book, but if a low grade copy ever crossed your path, forget your rent and BUY THAT BOOK!
68 – Fantastic Four #4 (May, 1962) Marvel Comics
The Silver Age return is of Prince Namor, the Sub-Mariner is a big one. It helped bridge the gap between Marvel and Timely comics and reintroduced Namor to a new generation. Also, I’m not one to nit pick and compare generations, but If Namor kidnapped Sue Storm now and called it an act of love, wouldn’t he be classified as a sex offender and receive the Red Dot of Death above his house? Just saying. “The Coming of the Sub-Mariner.” Is that title a naughty double entendre?
67 – Cerebus #1 (December, 1977) Aardvark-Vanaheim
One of the longest running independent comics of all time is Cerebus, created by Canadian cartoonist Dave Sim, which ran from December 1977 until March 2004. A very popular title, which included such crazy characters as Wolver-roach and Lord Julius, it also attracted the worst type of people — counterfeiters! There’s a counterfeit copy of the book going around that has tricked many, many collectors… and yes, even me. Beware!
66 – Archie Comics #1 (Winter 1942) MLJ Comics
The first issue of the longest running title of MLJ Comics, Archie Comics #1 is a must have for many collectors. Back in his heyday, America’s favorite son, Archie Andrews was as popular as Superman, Batman, and Captain Marvel and was a must read for many teenagers of the day. Even now, Archie has a following, which has led to a TV Show on the CW and a whole new generation of fans.
65 – Amazing Spider-Man #50 (July, 1967) Marvel Comics
One of the greatest Spidey stories ever told is also the first appearance of the Kingpin, one of the greatest Marvel villains ever. If you don’t know the tale, Spidey gives up when he feels being a hero in a city that hates him isn’t worth it and crime rises. What happens next is Marvel storytelling at its best.
64 – Batman #121 (February, 1959) DC Comics
Two things you should know about this book. 1) it’s very, very hard to find a high grade copy of this book and 2), this is the first appearance of Mister Zero, who would eventually be known as Mister Freeze, one of Batman’s most deadliest foes! Also, looking at this book, how in the hell did producers feel that Arnold Schwarzenegger was the right choice for Freeze in that God awful Batman mess? Ugh!
63 – Action Comics #242 (July, 1958) DC Comics
Cheesy cover, but Amazing KEY Issue! This book holds the very first appearance of Braniac, a top three nemesis for Superman. Now I’m not sure how old you are, but growing up, I preferred the Super Friends version of Braniac. Now that was a menacing villain!
62 – Detective Comics #66 (August, 1942)
Here he is, folks! Two-Face! This guy is yet another reason why Batman’s Rogue Gallery is a top 3 gallery (With Spidey’s and the Flash.) Now so many of us would love to own a copy, but this baby is gonna cost you some change. A 9.0 copy sold for around 10,000 dollars back in 2011 and to my knowledge, an 8.0 sold for 12,000 in 2016! Damn!
61 – Strange Tales #110 (July, 1963) Marvel Comics
Oh what a Strange trip this has been. This issue proudly boasts the first appearance of Doctor Strange. Set to be a major player in the Avengers: Infinity War, be ready for this book to sky rocket to the upper echelons of the Silver Age price plateau. Also, I’m pretty sure he shows up in Thor: Ragnorak as well.
60 – Brave and the Bold #34 (March, 1961) DC Comics
The first Silver Age Hawkman appearance is a big one. A long time DC icon, he makes his silver age return here with Hawkgirl. Hawkman is awesome! Too bad that guy who played him on Legends of Tomorrow was as interesting as watching a snail cross the sidewalk.
59 – Fantastic Four #12 (March, 1963) Marvel Comics
Ooh, baby! Before Hogan versus Andre and the Rock versus Stone Cold, there was the Hulk versus the Thing, the main event of the Marvel Comic Universe! And these two behemoths first meet up here, in Fantastic Four #12.
58 – Uncanny X-Men #4 (March, 1964) Marvel Comics
The first intro for the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, aka the first intro of the future Avengers, Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch! This is a classic for both X-Men and Avengers fans!
57 – Tales To Astonish #27 (January, 1962) Marvel Comics
“The Man in the Ant Hill” introduced Marvel fans to Hank Pym, the scientist who not only invented a serum that shrunk him to the size of an ant, but would become the Ant-Man, a founding member of the Avengers. I know us men hate the thought of shrinkage, but in this case, shrinkage is good!
56 – All Winners Comics #19 (October, 1946) Timely Comics
Marvel’s first super team is the All Winners Squad, which teams up Captain America, Namor, the Whizzer, Bucky, Toro, the Human Torch, and Miss America in a huge World War 2 super team. If you own this one, consider yourself lucky, blessed, and in a small and elite group of collectors who own this beauty.
55 – Flash #139 (September 1963) DC Comics
The Flash’s greatest villain ever zooms into Barry Allen’s life starting in issue #139 and antagonizes Barry until this very day. Love you some Reverse Flash? Check him out in the Flash TV show as well as Legends of Tomorrow and catch his return in Flash #21!
54 – Adventure Comics #247 (April, 1958) DC Comics
Superboy meets the super team of the future, the Legion of Super-Heroes and everything as we know it is changed. The geniuses at DC mixed sci-fi with comics and teenagers and delivered a smash hit team that has a loyal following till this day. Man, this is one of the most underrated teams in all of comics!
53 – The Brave and the Bold #54 (July, 1964) DC Comics
The inspiration and blue print for all other teenage super teams that came after, the Teen Titans make their debut here. Robin, Kid-Flash, and Aqualad changed the way young heroes were looked at and in return, the Teen Titans became and remained one of the most popular super teams in comic book history.
52 – Detective Comics #140 (October, 1948) DC Comics
Yet another of Batman’s villains, the Riddler makes his first appearance in this issue here. Now here’s a riddle for you. “Johnny’s mother had three children. The first was named April and the second was named May. What was the name of the third child?“ This one should be easy.
51 – Fantastic Four #52 (July, 1966) Marvel Comics