When Heritage closed their Comics & Comic Art Signature Auction on September 8-11, 2022, it was completely sold out with a total of $18,163,271. The auction saw four records in the first 90 minutes for three pieces of art and a key Bronze Age comic.
The first record set on September 8 was Steve Ditko’s Amazing Spider-Man #18 splash page 1 original art, which realized $432,000. The art marked only the third appearance of the Green Goblin and became the most valuable Ditko page ever sold at auction.
The next record was Don Heck’s Tales of Suspense #39 story page 12 original art from Iron Man’s first appearance that hammered for $228,000. This important piece of art is even more special considering Tony Stark’s debut was in a 13-page story and he only appeared in eight pages wearing the armor.
On the comic strip side, Heritage sold a Bill Waterson Calvin and Hobbes hand-colored daily comic strip original art dated February 6, 1992, that sold for $216,000. The rare piece of art personalized to Garry Trudeau became the most expensive Calvin and Hobbes sold at auction.
Hulk smashed the comic offerings when The Incredible Hulk #181 CGC 9.8 brought $138,000. The comic, which contains the first full appearance of Wolverine, set a new record for the most valuable copy.
Another important Bronze Age Marvel sale came when Hero for Hire #1 CGC 9.8 realized $108,000. This was the first time that the comic with Luke Cage’s origin and first appearance crossed the six-figure mark.
“All five of these pieces exceeded our expectations, and our expectations were high,” Heritage Vice President Barry Sandoval said. “Each of them is a memorable pop culture trophy in its own right.”
The auction had two significant sales from the same Batman issue in the infamous “A Death in the Family” story arc that saw the death of Jason Todd. Jim Aparo and Mike DeCarlo’s complete 22-page story for chapter 6 from Batman #429 hammered for $156,000. Later, Mike Mignola’s cover for Batman #429 with an iconic image of the Joker went for $180,000.
The Caped Crusader had plenty of impressive highlights in the auction. Frank Miller’s Batman: The Dark Knight Returns Book 4 page 11 depicting a silhouetted Batman astride a horse sold for $228,000. Batman #1 CGC 3.5 with the landmark first appearances of Catwoman and the Joker cleared $264,000.
Additional top auction sales included Frank Miller and Joe Rubinstein’s Wolverine #4 story page 15 for $102,000, Jack Kirby and Syd Shores’ Captain America #101 splash page 1 for $168,000, and Brian Bolland’s cover to Wonder Woman #63 for $99,000.