There’s a fair amount of debate about the beginning of the Golden Age of comics. Some peg it to 1933, when the format of newsstand comic books was codified, but others place the moment in June of 1938, when Superman made his debut in Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster’s first issue of “Action Comics,” whose cover featured the red-caped superhero from the planet Krypton lifting a car over his head.

“Action Comics” number one is probably the rarest comic book in the world, easily commanding six figures for a clean copy. Issues two through six did not have Superman covers, but seven did, which is why it is also highly prized. Superman’s archenemy, Lex Luthor, came on the scene in 1940 with issue 23—naturally, that issue is also collectible.

By this time, Superman had his own comic book. The first issue of that comic from the summer of 1939 (the first five “Superman” comics were quarterly) is almost as sought-after as issue one of “Action Comics.” In it, the first four Superman stories from the early issues of “Action Comics” are reprinted, including four pages that never made it into issue one.

“Superman” number two is notable for its full-page ad for the New York World’s Fair, while the cover of number 17 from July/August of 1942 depicts Superman, flying high above the Earth, holding the terrified caricatures of Adolph Hitler and Emperor Hirohito by the backs of their uniforms. Also collectible is issue 53, which marked the 10th anniversary of the Man of Steel.

The “Superman” comic ran for 423 issues until 1986, when it became “The Adventures of Superman.” Comics from that series are considerably less valuable.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Cover Browser

Cover Browser

Philipp Lenssen's incredible archive of over 94,000 comic book covers - Wow! Wham! Yikes! Browse by title from the … [read review or visit site]

Doug Gilford’s Mad Cover Site

Doug Gilford’s Mad Cover Site

Doug Gilford's great Mad Magazine reference site features cover scans and reference information on every issue of t… [read review or visit site]

TheComicBooks.com

TheComicBooks.com

Jamie Coville's in-progress ode to the history of 20th century comic books. Start with his Newsstand Period Part 1 … [read review or visit site]

Popeye's Thimble Theatre

Popeye's Thimble Theatre

Bruce Shults takes us on a comprehensive Popeye fan tour, from the early comic strips to cartoons and collectible m… [read review or visit site]

Barnacle Press

Barnacle Press

This collection of obscure newspaper comic strips provides scans browsable by title, year and date. Showcases comic… [read review or visit site]



Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Huge Silver Age Collection Lot 170+ Comic Batman Superman Ww Gl Detective ActionSuperman #32 - Beautiful Unrestored Higher Grade - Classic Cover! - 19451981 Dc Worlds Finest #271-lot Of 2 Orig Comic Bk Artwork Pages-batman+superman!Superman 12 Dc 1941 Wwii Cover Nice Shape!Superman #106 Very Nice White Pages Retells Origin Dc Comic 1956 FnSuperman 18 Dc 1942 Fred Ray Wwii Cover Nice Shape!43 Book Lot Dc Comics New 52 Several #1's Batman Superman Harley Quinn Lobo Jla1982 Curt Swan Superman #377 Original Page ArtSuperman #68 Very Nice 1st Lex Luthor Cover Of Title Golden Age Dc 1951 VgSuperman's Pal Jimmy Olsen # 134 - 1st Darkseid & Adams Cover Fine Cond.Superman #33 Very Nice White Pages Unrestored Golden Age Dc Comic 1945 Vg+World's Best Comics 1! Coverless/incomplete! Superman! Golden Age Dc From 1940!Batman Superman #1 Jim Lee Variant We Can Be Heroes Mint Near MintSuperman's Girlfriend Lois Lane #70 - 1st Silver Age Catwoman - Penguin - 1966Superman The Man Of Steel #18 Cgc 9.8 White Pages 1st DoomsdayT578. The Death Of Superman Limited Platinum Edition 9.8 Nm/mt Cgc (1993)Mad Comics #4 Ec Golden Age Satire Harvey Kurtzman Cover Superman Parody Superman's Girlfriend Lois Lane # 70 - 1st Sa Catwoman Fine Cond.Batman 612! Jim Lee!! Dc! 4/03 Great Batman Vs Superman Cover!!! Cgc 9.6 White!!Superman Man Of Steel 18!! 12/92!!! Cgc 9.6 White!!! 1st Full Doomsday!!! Dc!!!Showcase # 9 Cgc 5.0 1st Lois Lane Superman's Girl Friend Silver Age Key 4 Jla Superman #27 Nice Unrestored Golden Age Lois Lane Cover Dc Comic 1944 Gd+Superman 50th Anniversary 1988 Reprint Action Comics 1 Free Shipping !!!Superman #34 Very Nice White Pages Unrestored Golden Age Dc Comic 1945 Gd-vgSuperman #75 Cgc Ss 9.8 Signed By Jurgens. Doomsday. Death Of Superman. MovieBronze / Silver Age Marvel Dc Comics 46 Book Lot X-men Avengers Jla SupermanSuperman: The Man Of Steel #17 #18 #19 (nov 1992, Dc) NmAction Comics #92 -higher Grade- Dc Superman! Check Out Our Other AuctionsSuperman Departure From Krypton Statue In Original Box 2002 William PaquetWonder Woman # 212 Cgc 9.4 Diana Prince Justice League Jla Superman BatmanAction Comics #1 June 1938 Dc Comics Re-issue 1987 Nestle Quik Giveaway SupermanDc Comics Presents Vol.3 26 1980 Superman Green LanternSuperman #19 Low Grade But Complete/unrestored Golden Age Dc Comic 1942 FrSuperman #29 Nice Unrestored Golden Age Dc Comic 1944 FrDc Comics Icons Superman 1/6 Scale Statue 11" Tall Gentle Giant New 52 Superman Adventures # 5 !! 1st Ever App Livewire !! 1997 Batman 12 Hot Book 4Mego Superman * 100% All Original W/ Fabric Emblem * 8" * 1979 * Dead Mint *Superman Unchained #1 Cgc Ss 9.6 Jim Lee & Scott SnyderSuperman #107 Nice White Pages Late Golden Age Dc Comic 1956 Vg-fn** Superman ** Man Of Steel 18 CgcSuperman Vs Muhammad Ali C-56Superman #5 1940 Great CoverBatman / Wonder Woman / Superman In Action Comics New 52 #1 ~ All Vf High GradeSuperman: The Man Of Steel#18 1st Doomsday 4x Ss Cgc 9.6-wow!!Batman Superman #1 Jim Lee Variant We Can Be Heroes Superman Wonder Woman 9 Bombshell Cover Cgc 9.8 1 Hot Dc Check Store For More!!Dc The New 52 Superman And Wonderwoman/batman Lot Of 23 Comics 1 PaperbackKurt Schaffenberger - Original Dc Comics Art Page - Superman Family 190, Page 26Daisy 1940 Superman Krypto-raygun Toy, Rare, In Excellent Condition. 32 Vintage Comic Book Lot Avengers Superman Alien Batman Captain Marvel Iron Man** Superman ** Man Of Steel 17 CgcSuperman No.39 Coverless*superman #1 - 1st Print Dc New 52*Wonderwoman Vs Superman Statue Dc Direct Sculpted By Ray Villafane Limited Edt Superman #124 Very Nice White Pages Early Silver Age Dc Comic 1958 Fn+Superman #34--1:100 Incentive Variant Cover Batman The Dark Knight Returns #4 Cgc 9.6 Nm+ Batman Vs SupermanBatman/superman #1 And #2 Jae Lee B&w Sketch Variant Set - New 52! - 1/100Superman Vs. Muhammad Ali Dc Comics Collectors Edition Oversize C-56 Vf Superman #134 (dc, 1960) Pgx Vf- 7.5 Ow/wp (( Silver Age )) 12