If you haven’t looked at the first part, Key Batman Comics from the 1980’s, please do so before reading this post.  Let’s look at the data and decide which Batman comics are undervalued.   

Best Deals in no specific order

  1. Detective Comics 576, 577, 578 – If Todd McFarlane’s Batman 423 is worth $130 in raw then these three issues should be worth more than $10 or $15 each. To the best of my knowledge, Todd McFarlane drew 4 Batman or Detective covers in the 80’s.  Three of them are worth less than $15 and the other is worth $130.  To stress this even more, the Detective issues include his art on the interior AND the cover, the Batman issue is just the cover.  If people really love McFarlane’s Bat, then these issues are poised to rise.  Buy them as a set and get a crazy good deal!
  2. There are a series of characters who haven’t been shown on television or the movies that could explode if given the chance. Most of these appearances are inexpensive but could be worth much, much more if they receive some recognition.  By buying these issues you are one rumor away from doubling your money.
    Detective 511 – Feb.82 – 1st Appearance of Mirage – $11
    Batman 363 – Sept. 83 – 1st Appearance of Nocturna – $12
    Batman 412 – Oct 87 – 1st Appearance of the Mime – $10
    Detective 583 – Feb. 88 – 1st Appearance of Ventriloquist and Scarface – $25
    Batman 417 – Mar. 88 – 1st Appearance of the KGBeast – $13
    Detective 585 – Apr. 88 – 1st Appearance of the Ratcatcher – $16
    Detective 592 – Nov. 88 – 1st Appearance of Cornelius Stirk – $3
    Detective 608 – Nov. 89 – 1st Appearance of Anarky – $8
  1. Black Adam is receiving tons of attention because the Rock is portraying him and yet no one is accurately showing his first appearances. There is a golden age appearance that I’m not listing since it’s out of reach for most collectors.  Here they are in order with dates to prove my list.
    Shazam 28 – 4/77 – $250
    Limited Collector’s Edition 58 – 1978
    World’s Finest 264 – 9/80 – $8
    World’s Finest 267 – 3/81 – $14
    DC Comics Presents 49 – 9/82 – $28
    The three middle issues are getting zero attention while Shazam 28 and DC Comics Presents 49 are priced at a premium.  As the market gets clarity they will rise in value.  
  2. Major character appearances have some oddities. Tim Fox is scorching hot right now so there isn’t a great deal associated with him but the first appearance of Killer Croc and Jason Todd are reasonably priced.  Black Mask’s second appearance is cheap too.
    Tim Fox
    1st Appearance Batman 313 – $230
    2nd Appearance Batman 323 – $36

    Killer Croc
    Cameo in Detective 523 – $30
    1st Appearance in Detective 524 – $20
    2nd Appearance in Batman 358 – $25

    Jason Todd
    Cameo in Batman 357 – $110
    1st Appearance in Detective 525 – $18

    1st Appearance in Brave and the Bold 200 – $40

    Harvey Bullock
    1st Appearance in Detective 441 – $70
    2nd Appearance in Batman 361 – $14

    Black Mask
    1st Appearance in Batman 386 – $80
    2nd Appearance in Detective 553 – $9

To apply these kinds of principles to any title or character first you need to compile similar data, in this case, I used 80’s Batman comics.  Look at first appearances, cameos, and second appearances with pricing data.  Using these two simple ideas you can find real deals in a marketplace that is singularly focused on the latest hot book to the exclusion of every other book.

Happy Hunting,

Ron Cloer 

3 Replies to “Batman Comics in the 80’s That You Should Buy Now”

  1. You’re still avoiding the issue of the way “under-appreciated” Kelley Jones covers?!

    (McFarlane’s Batman cover doesn’t hold a candle to those Kelley Jones covers, imo.)

    And, Black Mask is a character that really needs to be brought into prominent place in Gotham. Maybe a storyline that explicitly examines the rise of the Black mask, followed by a rise of Bane, and then a subsequent re-emergence of the Black Mask after Bane is defeated. He should be the most important gangland boss in Batman’s world, imo. More like Kingpin than a crazyman. DC has far too many crazy people, and having someone more rationally criminal need to navigate Gotham would be very interesting.

    1. Kelley Jones started in the 90s specifically 1993 with Batman 491. His stuff is under appreciated.

      Totally agree with the rational mastermind type character.

  2. Outside of Batman/Dracula, I was not a fan of Kelley Jones and even considered stop buying Batman/Detective. Not sure why but I just felt his style was better on the Elseworlds books vs mainstream.

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