So CNN spoiled my day today

Wednesdays are “comic days” for me. This is when I go to the comic store during the lunch hour and grab the books that are either good reads or something to speculate on in the future.

Now unlike some folks, I always read my books even if I plan on selling them later. Some collectors, when knowing a particular comic might have some value, bag their comic and don’t read it.

SPOILERS under the tag…

So here’s the SPOILER: Captain America is dead.

Dead Cap

And CNN announced as such before I had the chance to make it to the store and read the issue. So phooey on CNN for spoiling the first part of comic book collecting – namely, just reading the story itself.

The article expressed the opinion that to kill Captain America “when America is at war” is troubling. But I don’t see it that way.

As a comic book geek, I gotta say –

“Yawn. But it might make me some short term money.”

And that brings us to part two — if I can’t enjoy the surprise, at least I can indulge in some comic book speculation.

Sales are always an issue, so high shock drama is the key factor to selling comics.

However, what high shock drama does in the short term is bring folks that normally wouldn’t walk into a comic book store to run in and buy insane amounts of copies of the comic. Single issue speculation runs rampant on E-Bay… I’m sure we’re not far from the ad that says:

“Own THE COMIC in which Captain America DIES!”

The thought in these particular comic book speculators is like that spot in “Indiana Jones” when the evil French archeologist explains to the audience – “This watch is worthless. I bury it in the sand, and a thousand years later, it’s priceless” form of comic book collecting.

And by extension, if you have, say “twenty” of those watches, you’ll be rich.

Of course, that analogy is only true if, in a thousand years, Captain America is still dead.

I have to say: “Yeah. Riiiight.”

For the non-comic book or non-soap opera watchers – dying in fiction means you’re only dead as long as the writer/editors say you’re dead. Death isn’t final in fiction. It might be final if there’s a single writer with a single purpose. But comics have writers that come and go, so ergo…

Captain America will be back. Faked deaths, clones, robots, aliens, identical twins, alternate realities, resetting reality, and/or a mixture of the above are easy fictional methods for bringing the character back… and then the short term profit on E-Bay ad would be sporting the value of the “return” issue:

“GET THE COMIC SPORTING THE RETURN OF THE ONE, TRUE CAPTAIN AMERICA!”

Feh.

But for those wanting to make a tidy small profit off of gullible suckers, here’s the ticket to financial success!

(It’s just like selling stocks, only smaller scale.)

1) Buy a few copies (if you can find them), but don’t go overboard. Especially variant covers if you can find them.
2) Toss each one into a nice plastic mylar bag.
3) Wait … oh, about six months to a year. If he’s back in less time, then you’re just hosed from the beginning. Like I said, only buy a FEW copies.
4) Watch E-bay for the pricing on said comic on a frequent basis. I predict at least $10 a copy by the end of the year (current price of the issue is $4).
5) If (a) there’s rumors he’s coming back, or (b) there’s a writer/editor change on the horizon of the title, sell sell sell, knowing full well the value will drop if you don’t.
6) You won’t get rich doing this. But in short, small quantities, it’s a nice way to double a small amount of cash.

So for now, RIP Cap. Be seeing you again soon enough.

UPDATE:  Wow.  Now this I couldn’t have predicted.

The issue I bought (the variant) sold for $4 at the store on Wednesday.  Two days later — It’s now $24+ on E-Bay

If you bought in bulk and sold one issue at a time, that’s a 500% profit.  Very, very disturbing.  Not sure what this says about people in general.

That said, I think I might go see if there’s more cover price copies at the local store on the way home…

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