The First Superman Comic Sells for a Record $3.2M on eBay

By: eBay Inc. Staff

After 10 days of competitive bidding, with the first bid at $1M only three minutes into the auction, Action Comics #1 has found a new home after breaking auction records. Selling for $3.2M, $1.04M more than the previous record, this sale price comes as no surprise given the pristine condition of this copy.  With crisp white pages and a grade of 9.0 from the Certified Guaranty Company (CGC), this copy sold by Darren Adams of Pristine Comics, is widely regarded as the “Holy Grail” of comic books, given its one of approximately 50 unrestored original copies of Action Comics #1 still in existence.

The previous record for the most expensive comic book was set in 2011 when another copy of Action Comics #1 with off-white pages sold for $2,161,000.  Though the book itself was initially priced for $.10 when it hit newsstands in 1938, the prices have hit the stratosphere because this is the comic that introduced the character of Superman for the very first time. Now, 76 years later, Action Comics #1 continues to play a significant role in pop culture having originated the modern Superman superhero franchise.

“This was a record auction for eBay as it was the most expensive comic book ever sold on our marketplace. The sale of Action Comics #1 is a prime example of how eBay plays a role in popular culture by connecting shoppers to must-have merchandise, including rare and valuable collectibles,” said Gene Cook, General Manager of Emerging Verticals for eBay Marketplaces. “This was an extraordinary opportunity to bring a comic – one that has captured the attention of passionate collectors and casual fans alike. We will continue to bring more of the world’s most unique and compelling merchandise to our passionate and global community of 149 million buyers, at a wide range of accessible price points.”

A portion of the proceeds from the auction will be donated to the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation. 

You can watch a video about the promotion and sale of the comic here.