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February 24, 2010

Action Comics #1 sells for $1,000,000

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Written by: Eli
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This past Monday a copy of Action Comics #1 sold at auction for $1,000,000.


ComicConnect.com auctioned this rare book, which will be on display at its New York City location for the media to view until its new owner claims it. After that, it’s unlikely that this beauty will be seen in public again. It hasn’t been spotted for the past 15 years, since it was last sold, for a measly $150,000. This auction set a new high dollar mark for the sale of a comic book. No other comic has sold for more money. Ever. In fact, this sale’s closest competitor is a few hundred thousand dollars away. Owning the first appearance of Superman is a dream that will be realized by a ridiculously small amount of comic lovers.

This book also introduced the world to the characters Lois Lane and Zatara, father of current DC Comics hero Zatanna. Two important, if almost completely neglected, highlights of this rare and historic book.

This book is over 70 years old, having been published in 1938. As you might imagine, there aren’t too many copies lying around. There are believed to be about 100 of these Action Comics #1′s still in existence. The copy sold on Monday stands out from the rest due to its condition, being one of five known copies above a 4.0 (VG) grade. It received a rating of 8.0, just below the highest certified rating for a copy of Action Comics #1, 8.5 (VF). To put this in perspective, a copy graded at 6.0 (Fine) sold for $317,000 last March.

Some see this sale as a validation of sorts for the comic medium. Is the million dollar mark a point at which a comic book can be reckoned along with the classic works of fine art? Should Action Comics #1 now be included in discussions of fine art right alongside the works of Monet, Picasso, da Vinci, and the like? Should it have already been included in that discussion?

If I were the guy with a million dollars to spend on something like this, I’d take Action Comics #1 every time. For all of us who may never get to see one of these in person, above is a pic of the book in question. This is what an unidentified buyer has just paid $1,000,000 to acquire.

Eli Anthony



  1. Wow. Amazing.

    You raise a good question that pop culture will soon have to answer as the old comic guard passes on (Stan Lee, Kane, Kirby, etc): Are these books works of art? Of course I think so, but what about art folks outside of the comic book fan base? What do they think?

    That’s what I want to know.

  2. Saw this on the news the other day. For some reason I thought they were talking about an Action Comics anniversary (I swear I heard…I think it was Brian Williams say something like “On this day, 7X years ago, Action Comics #1 came out”).
    Anyway, that’s a really ridiculous amount of money to pay for a comic….. Though if I had that kind of cash to throw around, and something like, a first edition copy of Fellowship of the Ring was floating around…I might pick that up. So I guess I don’t have much room to talk. Still, I can think of so many better things to do with a million dollars.

  3. billy

    Wow, unbelievable. Eli, was the buyer you? lol

  4. Aron White

    If I had a million dollars…I wouldn’t blow it on just ONE comic…psssh! More like…infinity comics! Mr. Unidentified Buyer, you’re doin’ it wrong!

  5. Eli

    @ Aron… One source identified the buyer of this copy of Action Comics #1 as the same person who bought the one for $317,000 that was sold last year. If that’s true, then apparently this guy has way more than one million dollars to throw around. Man, I hope he’s not hoarding as many copies of Action #1 as he can get his grubby hands on, that wouldn’t be cool.

    @ Billy… You’re getting too close to the truth, I’m must now have you whacked. If only I hadn’t spent all my money on comics… Doh!

  6. Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by ComicAttack: Action Comics #1 sells for 1 MILLION dollars! (yes, you’re reading that correctly) https://comicattack.net/2010/02/ac1m/ #comics #superman…

  7. […] that comic books and artists like Jack Kirby, Joe Simon, R. Crumb, Osamu Tezuka and many more, are the Michelangelo’s of the past century. It also reminds us that the medium can do more then just go beyond super heroes by feeding us […]

  8. […] with a CGC grade of 8.0, has just sold for $1,075,000! That’s $75,000 more than the copy of Action Comics #1 that was sold earlier this […]

  9. […] has just sold at auction for 1.5 million dollars. That’s $1,500,000! This not only beats the previous best for this issue of $1,000,000, it also brought in more than the $1,075,000 that a copy of Detective Comics #27 recently fetched. […]

  10. […] Action Comics #1 (8.0) — $1,000,000 […]

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