How to buy comics
A comics buying guide
Comic books are popular collectors' items. General comics were placed in circulation in the United States in the late 1800s; the "golden age" of comics started in 1938 with the introduction of Superman, and various comic formats are popular today. Creating a collection of comics and graphic novels can be a fun and lucrative investment.
>> What types of comics do you want to collect?
One of the first considerations as you determine which are the best comics to buy is the type of comics you want to collect. There is a wide variety of comic styles on the market. Among the different types of comics, the most popular are superhero comics. In these comic books, the stories of different superheroes and villains are often intertwined. Science fiction comics display alternative worlds, such as Star Wars and stories of non-human characters.
Manga comic books have become popular in the United States in the last 20 years. Manga books are Japanese comic books that are revered in Japan for their artistic and literary qualities. Manga stories involve day-to-day scenarios in different universes and galaxies.
Family comics feature a family-friendly script. These comic books may include extended relatives or friends of the main characters. Children's comics fall into the family comic genre. They feature characters such as animals, families and children. Blondie is an example of a family comic.
>> Consider specific characters
One way to start your comic book collection is to search for comic books with your favorite characters. For instance, if you are a fan of Spiderman, shop for comic books that prominently feature Spiderman.
Comic book companies often produce villains and superheroes to pit against one another, giving the characters crossover appeal. For instance, Batman and the Joker are likely to be found in the same comic book. Fans of the Joker can look for series of comics featuring Batman to find their favorite character.
>> Series versus special editions
You may wish to collect an entire series of comic books. Comic books are printed with numbered issues. To collect a comprehensive series, buy every issue number in a series. For some comic books, series numbers run into the hundreds. Comic books may have mini-series of just a few titles and issue numbers.
You might be interested in learning how to buy comics with certain special edition numbers, rather than a full series. Certain issue numbers may be considered special or rare due to the introduction of a character or a particular event covered in that issue. When you shop for specific copies, you need to know the title of the comic book, as well as the issue.
>> Choose regular comics or collectors copies
Regular comic books are traditional comics that may be read over and over and enjoyed by a variety of people. These types of comics are widely available. Collectors editions of comic books are placed on sale specifically for those who collect comic book editions. The cost of a collectors edition may be much greater than the cost of a regular edition, because the collectors edition may be rare.
>> Do comic conditions matter?
When choosing which type of comic to invest in, consider the condition of the book. Some comic books are in perfect condition, whereas others have slight tears on the pages or some slight wear. Some comic books may have major damage, such as ripped pages or water damage. Some people believe that the best comics to buy are those in excellent condition. Manga comic books, unlike American comics, often come with hard covers, which can be easier to maintain.
>> Protect your collection
Protecting and displaying a comic collection can be fun. There are several different products to choose from to protect the comics and to preserve the quality of the book. The comparison chart below lists some comic protection methods.
| Book cover || Plastic covers can be placed around a comic book so that the material inside is protected. Book covers are easy to find; they protect each specific book. |
| Display case || Display cases are widely used by those who own comic book stores. Clear glass display cases protect comics. Display cases allow the book to be seen but not touched. |
| Book stands || Book stands work in two different ways. A book stand can be similar to a newsstand and be completely open to the public. A book stand can also be encased in glass, so that no one can reach in and touch the items on display. Book stands can be flat, so they are excellent for home use, and you can choose the level of protection you feel is necessary. |
Comic books can be fun to read and collect. Make your comic book purchasing decisions easier with this comics buying guide.