Have Aaron become mad to recommend this massively over printed modern comic book? Maybe but before you dismiss my recommendation, hear out my reasoning and see if it makes sense.
Before moving on, I want to highlight the book that I recommended in #3 of this comic books worth investing series. If you have been watching Agents of Shield, you should have noticed that a couple of villains have appeared or are hinted at including Blackheart and the Griffin. Both are actually part of a villain group known as the Hood’s Crime gang or syndicate. I might be over sketching but this strongly hints that the Hood will indeed appear in Netflix’s 4 marvel Tv shows in the coming years. His first appearance is in the Hood #1 from 2002, which is still a cheap book to pick up.
Continuing with Justice League, the main reason for recommending this issue is the recent announcement that Cyborg will be part of the upcoming Man of Steel #2. From news sources, it appears that MOS #2 will be a platform whereby members of the rumored Justice League movie will make cameo appearance before moving to the actual JL movie in 2017. If this is true, then the team that will debut in the movie will be the New 52 team and not the previous incarnation. This might lead to some interest in their first appearance which can be found be Justice League New 52 #1.
Of course, the downside is that this issue was massively promoted which had lead to a staggering print run of 170k, according to Comichron’s August 2011 data. (On a side note, I can’t believe experienced comic investors in a certain Google+ community actually get this number wrong. One member actually said that the print run was around 46k, which is for the 2nd print according to the Sept 2011 data.)
Anyway, given this high print run, is it even worth to speculate? I think it can be based on the Batman New 52 #1’s performance. Batman #1 has always been desirable but the Batman movies really push it to its current high price. I can see this potentially happening for Justice League as well. The hype will be big for this movie and the excitement might cause this issue to spike. On its own, Justice League New 52 #1 is already an desired item as evident by its above cover price of $10. Any hype that sharply increase the demand will probably push it to new heights. This might continue for a while if there is going to be more than one Justice League movie from DC.
Now that I have established my reasons for choosing this book, let’s look at some choices you need to make. Unlike silver or bronze age comic books, modern books have more than 1 version due to variants and later printings. This is the case for Justice League #1. Below are some of these variations and their print runs. Personally, I like to buy the versions with the smaller supply so I will be picking some of these up if the price is right.
Justice League #1 Combo Pack Variant
This combo pack variant bears the same cover as the regular cover but with a purple background rather than the yellow one. It comes with both the physical comic as well as a digital code. Print run is only 14k.
Justice League #1 1:200 Sketch Variant
This cover was done by David Finch and was given to retailers for exploring 200 copies for the regular version. The estimated print run is around 750 according to recalledcomics.com. That is pretty small for a book with such a fan base. Current price is around $50-$60. If the books hot, this might skyrocket to over $120.
Be beware that this cover is identical to 5th print of #1. The only difference is the coloring on the title. The 1:200 variant is red while the 5th print is blue.
Justice League #1 Roadshow Sketch Variant
Another rare variant you might want to keep your eye on is the roadshow variant. This has the same cover as the regular #1 but is in black and white. Estimated print run according to recallcomics.com is around 1k. Expect to pay around $50-$60 for this issue.
Justice League #1 2nd Print
Personally, this is my favorite cover among all the later printing so I am putting it here as a recommendation. It looks really nice and might be something that collectors will want on top of the first prints. Print run is around 46k which is only about 25% of the first print. Price wise, this is also a above cover price book, which shows there is indeed interest in this cover.
Justice League #1 2nd Print Combo Pack
Since we are talking about 2nd print, I might as well put this version up. It is the combo pack version of the second print. There is no official print run number I can find but based on the ratio that I have seen for other combo packs, it should be around 10% of the regular version’s print run, which comes to around 4-5k, which is rather low.