Saturday, July 1, 2017

MAIL CALL: Filling holes and completing runs

Woo-hoo! Post lady just arrived with a recent eBay purchase, delivered all the way from a seller in Ontario, Canada.

The shipping actually turned out to be not that bad at all, at $8.59. Factoring that in at 86¢ per book, these babies, all in VF/NM, ran be anywhere from $1.87 to $3.68, each, with an average of $2.43 — about half the cost of a new comic book!

Sadly, one item paid for, THE ADVENTURES OF SUPERBOY #15, was not included in the package. So, that pushes the per issue price to $2.70. Still a good deal, I think. I've contacted the seller to find out what's up and to see if he has any intention of sending the missing book.

Of these issues. THE MICRONAUTS was an absolute favorite of mine when I was a kid, at least until it went direct sales-only at Issue #38. At that time I the nearest comic book store to where I lived was a two-hour drive, each way, and I was still about three years away from having my first driver's license. It wasn't a huge loss, though. The series took a dive in quality, I thought, about the time writer Bill Mantlo replaced Biotron with that furry, pink, Tasmanian Devil character whose name I forget — who wasn't even one of the toys! Granted, Bug wasn't from the toy line either, but he looked close enough to some of the figures to count. Plus, he was AWESOME!

What truly sucked, however, was the house fire we had in August 1980, which claimed all of the comics I had to that point, including MICRONAUTS #1-23. It's taken all this time, but this purchase *finally* re-completes the early run. Currently, I'm still in search of #42, 51-56, 58, and 59, if you have same and are in a selling mood.

This issue books at $4.75 in VF/NM. Got mine for either $3.68 or $3.77, depending on whether or not I ever get that Superboy issue.

BLUE DEVIL was a series that I only half-cared about at the time. Paris Cullins' art was okay, but too cartoony for my tastes at the time, when I worshiped at the alter that was (and still is) George Perez. I also found the book to be a joke at the time, because it was intended to be funny, and at 17 I took my super-hero comic book deadly serious. These three issues complete the run for me. I suspect I'll be writing a "Full Run review for Shanghalla at some point in the not-too-distant future.

Book value on these, according to, is $2.85 each. I got #9 and #11 at between $2.19 and $2.28 — again, depending on if I ever see that Superboy issue. Issue #31 was even cheaper, at $2.08/$2.17

Of the two CHALLENGERS OF THE UNKNOWN limited series, the 1991 Jeph Loeb/Tim Sale outing came at a time when I still did not always have ready access to a comic book store. The nice judge had a penchant for depriving me of my license from time to time, totally unfairly I might add! The 2004 series by Howard Chaykin was something I simply passed on at the time, figuring I'd catch up with it later via the discount bins. These two issues complete both series for me and, again, Full Run reviews are in the offing.

The Loeb/Sale issue was the cheapest in this lot, at $1.87/$1.96. It books for $2.85. The Chaykin issue cost me $3.12/$3.21. It books for the same $2.85 tag.

VALOR was a book I was terribly "Meh" on at the time. Certainly, as a Legion of Super-Heroes spin-off, I felt obligated to buy it, but missed issues as often as not. That era, just prior to the Zero Hour reboot was kind of the nadir of my interest in the Legion, frankly.

Again, the book value is $2.85, each. Issue #13 set me back $2.45/$2.54, while #18 ran $2.26/$2.35. Not a great bargain for wither book, but, again, it completes a run.

This run of the LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES came out during a two-year stint when I was not buying new comics at all, due to some hard economic issues in the home. Same deal as most books of this era, $3 in NM meaning I'll call it $2.85 in VF/NM. I paid $2.02/$2.11 and this also completes a run for me, but for the alternate covers on #1-6, which is not something I'm liable to shell out the current book of $6-10 for.

If I ever get the Superboy comic, that also will complete a run as #15 was the only one I was missing from this series, which was based on the syndicated live-action tv show. The price would be $2.45 on a $2.85 value, and push all of the above to the lower price. So, that'd be cool.

So, overall, not bad. Under book on everything, even when adding in postage, and five (possibly six) series completed, with a key hole filled on one other series.

Not a bad day of collecting, if you as me. Heck, I'm not even all that upset about the missing book.

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