Incredibly rare Batman debut Detective Comics could sell for $1.5M

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This comic book could fetch some batty prices.

A rare, unrestricted copy of Detective Comics #27—Batman’s 1939 debut—is on the auction blockand the final bid can reach the rare issue record price of $1.74 millionAccording to an independent seller.

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“$1.5 million is not an unreasonable estimate,” said Ted Vanleau, owner of Super World Comics in Holden, Mass. “It could set a record. It’s so sought after it’s going to be insane.

Online bidding for the highly-iconic piece of comics history, which received a 6.0 “Fine” rating from the Certified Guaranty Company, begins at just $1 on March 8 through Heritage Auctions.


With the auction ending March 30 via live bidding in Dallas, the top bid has already soared to $612,000 as of Friday afternoon.

“Basically there are two comics in existence that are the holy grail of comics,” Vanlieu said. “One is Action Comics #1 from 1938, first Superman, which started the superhero craze, and then Detective Comics #27, which came out the next year.”

Bidding for a copy of Detective Comics #27 – Batman’s first film – had reached $612,500 as of Friday afternoon.
Heritage Auctions

Detective Comics #27 cemented his place in comics lore by introducing Gotham’s millionaire orphan Bruce Wayne to the world with “The Case of the Chemical Syndicate” by artist Bob Kane and writer Bill Finger.

In the feature, Commissioner Jim Gordon invites socialite Wayne to the crime scene of a murderer named Lambert, who is a co-owner of Apex Chemical Corp., and whose son is believed to have killed the first man Had given. Wayne, disguised as Batman, tracks down Lambert’s real killer: his greedy business partner who has been murdering fellow co-owners to gain control of his company.

CGC has graded only 75 copies Detective Comics #27, which has 14 books that have a higher rating than the current one for sale.

Page from 1939 Detective Comics #27
The 1939 issue featured the film debut of Gotham’s orphaned millionaire Bruce Wayne.
Heritage Auctions

According to Ed Juster of Heritage Auctions, the copy is now up for grabs at auction because the anonymous seller needs the cash for a new pad.

“This particular consignor is looking to buy a new home, and it’s a multimillion-dollar home, so some of his comic property becomes available,” he said.

Another 6.5 grade copy of Detective Comics #27 brought in a record $1.74 million in May.

superman number 1, who in rake A whopping $5.3 million in private sales by 2022 holds the record for the most expensive comic book.

cover of superman #1
A high grade copy of Superman #1 holds the record for the highest comic book sale price at $5.3 million.
Heritage Auctions

Robert C. Storms of High Grade Comics said that the comics market has largely cooled off compared to the post-COVID years due to uncertainty in the stock market and banking system. Nevertheless, sales of “super high” items such as Detective Comics #27 have been largely immune to such economic fluctuations.

“There’s only a certain number of buyers that are going to put down that kind of money, so it’s really about how comfortable they are with spending that kind of money,” Storms said. “The current economy will not affect their sales.”

The sale of Detective Comics #27 comes as part of a larger comic auction that includes copies of Batman #1 and Marvel Comics #1, and a restored Superman #1 book.

Incredibly rare Batman debut Detective Comics could sell for $1.5M

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