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2004 Market Report
BEANO COMIC No 1 SELLS FOR £7,700.00
copy of the first issue Beano with a faded cover has sold beneath estimate for
£7,700, the third highest price for a British comic at auction. A run of early
Beano numbers between 12 and 20 in Very Good minus to very good plus grades were
sold generally in the £200-300 range each, with a very fresh copy of No 85 making
£225 and a similar graded No 100 at £200.
have auctioned a number of 1933 first issue Hotspurs between £50-110 down the
years and you would expect one with a taped spine and tan pages to fall into the
lower price category. The difference was that this lowly copy was offered in November
with its original free gift Black Mask, the only one known to survive, so bidding
was intense with a final bid of £330 winning the day. It should be noted that
DC Thomson also gave away the same type of mask with the first Beano comic some
five years later when it was christened the Whoopee Mask, possibly after one of
that comic's inaugural characters, Whoopee Hank, The Slapdash Sheriff. To our
knowledge it was produced in several colours for that promotion, but not the original
black as it may have been considered to be too sombre for the launch of a comic
aimed at a younger market than the Hotspur.
other Hotspur lots showed prices between £20-30 each for issues 2-18 and £12 each
for issues 19-122 completing the years 1934 and 1935 (in high grades with all
free gifts). Early Hotspurs in average grades usually do well to get past six
comic only ran for eighty issues in 1939 and 1940 before succumbing to wartime
paper and dyestuff shortages. Although the third sibling in D C Thomson's Beano
and Dandy stable, the title is not nearly so well known due to its early demise
so prices can vary although all issues are rare. We offered Magic No 2 with a
rare artwork of Little Squirty by Chick Gordon from that issue. It made a magical
£508.00. Charles "Chick" Gordon (c1890-1952) spent his career as a staff artist
at D C Thomson starting work in 1922. He created Cheery Chinks for The Rover and
the ever popular Spadger's Isle for the Wizard which he drew for twenty years,
making the front cover during the war. Amongst many other characters he also drew
Bamboo Town for the newly launched Dandy in 1937 and Tin-Can Tommy for The Beano's
back page in the 1940s.
early Dandy issues were offered in Very Good Minus grade as they were retrieved
from a contemporary bound volume showing the resultant sew holes to each comic's
spine. No 3 did particularly well at £373 whilst the No 5 made £165, in line with
the further early numbers offered from 6 to 15.
12 was Egged up to £200 with further early issues in that range, whilst No 15,
the first Fireworks issue, rocketed to £325.
lot 75 was a Beano Book No 1 that had been professionally restored with a complete
new back board and spine onto which the original spine illustration was laid.
Estimated at £900-1,200 this new, good-looking copy rose to £1,634 before being
carried away by a knowledgeable Midlands collector. Potential bidders for our
Dandy Book 3 from 1941 had scoured our back issue catalogues to see the last time
one was offered for price comparisons. Unfortunately this was a fruitless task
as we had never featured one since our auctions started in 1992. Consequently
the bidding spiralled up to £1,650 from a high estimate £700 and our Midlands
maestro snaffled this copy as well. Beanos in complete years in bound volumes
continue to attract strong bidding and 1945, '46 and '47 garnered £373, £373 and
favourite characters are always in high demand and these early bi-annuals that
were only distributed north of the border were chased up to £441 and £660, especially
as these particular copies were limited production hardbacks.
Wullie's hilarious adventures continue apace with oor disgruntled wee hero getting
pushed awa' by a lodger's greedy tea-time guzzling. Wullie thinks up a way to
blacken his reputation - and his feet as well! This Dudley Watkins beautifully
crafted piece was bid to £940. The 1955 Broons artwork had Paw giving Maw the
nicht oot thinking that the rest of the family would help with the chores and
clear up the midden. But they went oot too and he was left to do the lot hi'sel,
including tidying up all the Beano and Dandys. Dudley Watkins made use of some
early half-tone sheeting to bring even more dimension to this classic piece. A
strong £1,320 secured its onward journey to the USA.
Bill and Kit Carson's adventures were popularised throughout the Fifties by their
continued front cover exposure in the weekly Comet comic and complete yearly runs
do not come around that often. Also there were the ubiquitous rusty staples, an
affliction that downgrades the freshest copy to "VG/FN". Offered in several lots,
there was heavy bidding for the years 1953 and 1957-59 resulting in successful
bids that broke down to £5 a copy, double previous values. Other complete years
will be featured in our March catalogue in 2005.
auctioned nineteen mid/high grade lots of Super-Detective, Thriller and Cowboy
Picture Library issues, the Detectives averaging £10 each, the Thrillers around
£7 and the Cowboys at £4-6 each, their brightly coloured, well illustrated covers
always popular. Surprisingly, a run of sixty-three facsimiles of early Cowboy
Comics Library issues, copied in the early 1990s, were chased to £166.
Tries To Eat Cat Before Cat Can Eat Fish! Charles Griggs Dandy artwork from 1963
catjoled a fine £605 for only the second piece of his artwork ever offered for
auction. Charles Grigg started at The Dandy in 1962 and drew Korky The Cat for
the following twenty years, eventually surpassing artist Jimmy Chrigton's original
output. Griggs highly crafted and prolific work for The Dandy included Charley
The Chimp, and adventure strips The Red Wrecker and The Umbrella Men. He also
drew Foxy for The Topper from 1953-1976.
Clott's bull charges through the barracks and the visitor's red carpet catches
fire as Col. Grumbly vows retribution. David's Law's artwork rarely comes to auction
and this full colour piece from the Christmas issue of the Dandy, 1969 was knocked
down for a strong £1,010. David "Davy" Law (1907-1971) found international fame
by introducing Dennis The Menace to unsuspecting Beano readers in March 1951.
He also penned Beryl The Peril, Captain Hand and the accident-prone nitwit, Corporal
Clott. In the end even Dennis's fiendish pet, the Abyssinian wire-hared wolf hound,
Gnasher, got his own strip series.
was the first comic published by Fleetway in 1960 and Bill Titcombe's son of Andy
Capp started his adventures in direct competition with D C Thomson's Topper and
Beezer. The comic outlasted both, continuing for the following thirty-five years.
We offered a No 1 issue with free gift Balloon Bleeper along with a rare Buster
pin badge and Editor's letter to 1930s and 40s Amalgamated Press artist Roy Wilson.
The lot busted through to £338, a very strong price for a comic never sold in
three figures before now.
U S section highlighted a Fine copy of Detective Comics # 98 from 1945 which realised
an above guide £166 and Human Torch # 27 starring the Asbestos Lady but with a
cover that had small sew holes at the spine having been at one time part of a
bound volume. In otherwise clean condition, this Very Good copy sold for £143,
also above guide price. Our silver Age section offered an extremely worn pence
copy of Amazing Spider-Man # 1, its back and front covers separated at the spine.
Even so this Fair graded example went for a winning bid of £355 underscoring Spidey's
enduring popularity. More Amazing was his issue # 12 with Doc Oc cover which in
Very Fine/Near Mint grade saw this cents copy reach a £660 high, 25% over guide.
holiday time so let me extend all our good wishes to you and your families for
a peaceful, well earned break, with no shortage of entertaining, laugh- inducing
the best for 2005,
Comic Book Postal Auctions, Ltd.