Record-breaking comic sells for $6 million

$6 million for first superman comic

Superman's first appearance in 1938. Credit: HeritageAuctions/

A first edition of Action Comics, which ‘introduced Superman to the world’ has sold for a record sum at auction.

A rare edition of Action Comics No. 1 from 1938, renowned for introducing Superman to the world has fetched an astonishing $6 million (€55 million).

The auction, conducted by Heritage Auctions last week, set a new benchmark as the most expensive comic book ever sold. The event, involving an anonymous buyer, took place during a four-day comic auction extravaganza, which amassed over $28 million in total.

The rarity of Action Comics No. 1

This particular issue of Action Comics No. 1 stands out not only for its significant historical value but also for its exceptional condition.

Heritage Auctions claimed it was ‘the most important comic ever published,’ emphasising its bright colours and almost pristine cover despite being 86 years old.

It’s a testament to the comic’s enduring appeal that its valuation reached such a high figure, considering its initial cost was merely 10 cents. With fewer than 100 copies believed to exist today from the original 200,000 printed, its rarity contributes vastly to its worth.

A benchmark in comic book auctions

The comic’s value is further underscored by its condition rating of ‘Very Fine+’ and a CGC rating of 8.5, making it one of the top three unrestored issues known. Its heritage from the Kansas City Pedigree adds to its allure and historic significance.

The sale eclipsed the previous record held by a 1939 issue of Superman No. 1, which was sold for $5.3 million in 2022, according to the Certified Guaranty Company.

This marks a significant moment in the collectibles market, where rare comics are increasingly seen as valuable investments.

The legacy of Superman

The iconic cover, depicting Superman lifting a car above his head, and the introduction of Lois Lane within its pages, cemented the comic’s place in popular culture.

As Heritage Auctions pointed out, the Superman character introduced in this inaugural issue has remained largely unchanged, continuing to captivate audiences in comics, on television, and in cinemas around the world.

This sale not only underscores the comic’s monumental impact on the superhero genre but also highlights the growing appreciation for comic books as both art and investment.

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Written by

John Ensor

Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina. He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.