Man Auctions Copy of First Batman Comic Ever, Which He Bought for 10¢ in 1939

This article is over 13 years old and may contain outdated information

Recommended Videos

At the age of thirteen, Robert Irwin bought Detective Comics #27 from a newstand for ten cents.  And though he and his brother collected and discarded hundreds of comics, that one issue was the only one he kept.  Why?

“I don’t know,” he said. “I must have just liked the cover.”

Mr. Irwin rediscovered his copy six years ago, but did not immediately sell it, even though he was offered $100,000.  When another copy of the comic sold for more than $1 million earlier this year, he decided to make his move.

That waiting has paid off: his copy has been valued at $400,000, and bids on the Heritage auction have already reached that marker, with bidding still open until Thursday. Which gives him a percentage return on his investment that’s… nine digits long.

Irwin’s copy has been graded at 7.0 by the Certified Guaranty Company, a rating (out of 10) that corresponds to Fine/Very Fine.  Despite how optimistic that sounds, it is precisely because the comic is not really in mint condition that it has not been valued up there with the $1 million+ auctions of Detective Comics #27 and Action Comics #1, for example.

Let this be a final lesson to all of us: Don’t.  Ever.  Let your parents throw out your comics.

(via Comic Book Resources.)

The Mary Sue is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more about our Affiliate Policy
Image of Susana Polo
Susana Polo
Susana Polo thought she'd get her Creative Writing degree from Oberlin, work a crap job, and fake it until she made it into comics. Instead she stumbled into a great job: founding and running this very website (she's Editor at Large now, very fancy). She's spoken at events like Geek Girl Con, New York Comic Con, and Comic Book City Con, wants to get a Batwoman tattoo and write a graphic novel, and one of her canine teeth is in backwards.