Hake’s first premier auction of 2024 presented rare, desirable collectibles from across Americana and pop culture collecting categories. The auction closed on March 19-20, to the tune of $2.5 million in sales. Top results were dominated by action figures and toys, political campaign material, comics, baseball cards, and original art. The art category was filled with comic covers and pages, as well as strips, movie poster art, and more.

The Nightmare on Elm Street prerelease movie poster original art by Duncan Eagleson slashed its way to $15,340. The poster was created to help director Wes Craven and producer Robert Shaye to secure financing for the horror film. Eagleson created a nighttime street scene with the claw slashing through the sky as a striking image that juxtaposes a sleepy neighborhood with a horrible nightmare. Of special note, there are only three claws pictured because Freddy Krueger’s iconic razor glove with four blades had not been created yet.

The Batman #315 cover by Dick Giordano that depicts sky high action of Batman using his Bat-Glider to fight Kite-Man bested its $10,000 estimate when it sold for $14,278. Giordano was a prominent artist on the Dark Knight’s books, working extensively on Batman and Detective Comics in the 1970s to the ‘90s.

The Superman: Secret Origin #6 cover by modern era Superman artist Gary Frank flew by its $10,000 estimate to realize $13,239. Featuring inks by Brad Anderson, the cover shows a slightly worse for wear Superman smiling with his arms around Lois Lane and Jimmy Olsen. A defeated Metallo is suspended by chains in the background.

The Thimble Theatre Starring Popeye daily strip original art by Popeye’s creator E.C. Segar sold for $12,992, well over the $10,000 estimate. The five-panel strip from December 25, 1936 shows Poop Deck Pappy and Popeye discussing mysterious melody coming closer to their house, much to Olive Oyl’s displeasure.

A group of 20 story pages from X-Men Annual (2000) by Scot Eaton realized $8,437, besting the $5,000 estimate. Featuring inks by Scott Hanna, the pages feature the X-Men relaxing and swimming, then being attacked by Prime Sentinels. Characters on the art include Rogue, Thunderbird, Wolverine, Nightcrawler, Psylocke, Forge, Yuriko, and Colossus.

Don Martin’s MAD Magazine #171 “One Morning in Surgery” cartoon original art cruised beyond the $5,000 estimate to land at $7,139. The three-panel page by the longtime Mad cartoonist shows his iconic slapstick character having just finished surgery with the surgeon commenting on the challenges of rebuilding his entire face. The last panel focuses on the surgical tray with the patient’s forgotten nose.

Jim Aparo’s Detective Comics #481 unused cover that shows Batman clutching the hands of a large clock as the Grim Reaper swipes at him with a scythe cleared $5,841. The lower right has an inset box with an image for a proposed Hawkman backup story. This was the first issue of Detective Comics featuring stories that were going to be used in the canceled Batman Family title. Due to the last minute decision to merge titles, a new cover was needed, which was designed by Jim Starlin and Tatjana Wood.

The prices realized in Part I and Part II of Hake’s Auction #240 are available on their website.