The run up in the value of the Inhumans first appearances after the rumor script completion was an interesting experience. It gave me a front row seat on how prices react to news and the kind of price momentum they have. Overall, I would say non graded comics tend to double in value almost within a few days of the announcement and continues a gradual increase until a price ceiling is hit. This will be the status quote until further news or the arrival of a batch of aggressive buyers.
In today’s article, I like to predict the value of the fantastic four #36, #45 and #46 which contains first appearance of important Inhuman characters. More specifically, I would like to compare and contrast these 3 to see if any are undervalued. This post will be particularly useful to those who didn’t heed my advice of buying them as undervalued silver age comics last year and is considering whether to get into the game now.
Let’s first establish what is their current selling prices for Fine and Very Good condition raw books.
|Fantastic Four #36||USD40||USD 90|
|Fantastic Four #45||USD110||USD 190|
|Fantastic Four #46||USD70||USD 120|
Looking at the above, you can already see that #45 is leading the pack. That is no surprise as it has always been regarded as the Inhumans team appearance. However, I would argue that Black Black and Medusa are 2 of the most important characters in the team and their first appearances should not lag behind #45 by a wide margin. Currently, it is clear that #36 is the most undervalued among the team but I suspect this will change.
Why is Medusa going to be popular
If you have seen Marvel comics promotional posters, you will see Medusa everywhere. Below is one example of the recent Marvel Now Phase 3 launch. Notice that Medusa is there?
Here is another example from the up coming AXIS event. See Medusa here again?
Given Marvel’s push and the fact that she will be important as the voice of Black Bolt, I think her first appearance will have a chance of appreciation, especially after casting is announced. So, if you don’t have any of these issues, I would strongly encourage you to pick up #36 as I believe it will catch up to #45 and #46. Don’t forget it is also the older issue so mid to high grade copies will be harder to come up.
How high will #45 go?
Moving away from relative comparison, how high will each issue go? In order words, is it worth it to buy all of them at current prices and how much is the potential return? The best way is to look at #45 since it is the more expensive book. If it has room to grow, #36 and #46 would have more room since they are currently lagging behind #45 in value.
The easiest way to do price forecast is to find a comparable book that is printed around the same years, has a major first appearance and the character has been featured in a Marvel movie.
The best book I can think of is Tales of Suspense #57, featuring the first appearance of Hawkeye. This is a Sept 1964 book, which is one year earlier than FF #45, which is a Dec 1965 book.
|Condition||Tales of Suspense #57||Fantastic Four #45|
|Very Good Condition||USD150 to USD170||USD 110|
|Very Good/Fine Condition||USD230 to USD250||USD 130|
|FIne Condition||USD300 to USD320||USD 190|
Comparing the 2 books, you can see there is still some room for another 50% growth. You can adjust this by your own estimation of how many copies of TOS #47 vs FF #45 as well as how popular Inhumans vs Hawkeye. Overall, I think the table is reasonable to provide a solid base for your own prediction.
If you are interested in the print run, here is an estimate. In 1966, Fantastic Four sold an average of 329k copies while Tales of Suspense sold 252k. Assuming similar selling patterns in 1964 and 1965, there will be a 70k more FF #45 vs TOS #47.
Overall, I think all the Inhumans key issues still have some room for growth especially after the movie confirmation. In particular, Fantastic Four #36 is the most undervalued considering the importance of Medusa and how Marvel is pushing her to be the face for Inhumans.