08th Oct2020

eBuying Comics: Week 44

by Ian Wells

The West coast of America. Home once upon a time to a second team of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. The target is one of those heroes, having served on both rosters. A mere mortal amongst gods and soldiers, time and time again he has put it all on the line and came out to fight another day. We catch up with him as he traces down a lead on an old adversary. Of course we know this all to be a set up. He is here merely to be captured for our own amusement. The blue light flashes bright catching his eye, but quick enough to catch him off guard.

Later across the multiverses. Star City home to a vigilante who has stood the test of time from the Golden Age till now. Like his West coast counterpart this vigilante has stood side by side with his universes most powerful heroes. He fights both for the fate of his city and the world with equal measure. Showing humanity and a unique skill set can be very effective. Tonight is like an other night, spent on a rooftop, patrolling Star City. He spots a overly familiar foe and once again he is ready to dance the same dance. But unfortunately fate is against him tonight. A blue light allows the foe to go free for one more night at least.

Some time later both men awake. Thier eye sight returning, they find themselves tied to a chair each in an auditorium surrounding by what looks like the crowd from San Diego Comic Con. In the VIP area Stephen Amell is deep in conversation with Mike Grell, while Jeremy Renner and Matt Fraction sit motionless. A man enters  from stage left and switches on a microphone. “Welcome once again to the Nerdly face-off, death match, battle arena. In the blue corner representing DC Comics wearing a costume which is a not too subtle nod to Robin Hood. He is Star City’s very own Emerald Archer. I give you Green Arrow! Fighting for the side of Marvel Comics in the red corner. Wearing what can only be described as a man in a purple skirt. The Avenger who always hits the spot! Hawkeye! Now ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls and the millions streaming along at home. Lets get ready to raaaamble about comics!”

Round 1: First Appearances

GA lands a combination of devestating blows and in all honesty this bout could be all over in round one. It is the equivalent of pitting a fly weight against heavy weight champion of the world. Really a result like this is to be expecting when selecting a character from the Golden Age to face off against a later Silver Age character. While a current valuenof  £2321 for Hawkeyes first appearance on Tales of Suspense #57 is not to be sniffed at, it is not even a dent on the £211,925 valuation of Green Arrows debut in More Fun Comics #73. It is worth pointing out at this point that More Fun Comics #73 is also the first apperance of Aquaman! So the odds really are stacked against good ol Clint. You could argue for halving the valuation for one character, which would still leabe Green Arrow out in front but not have Hawkeye on the verge of being knocked out.

After One Round:  Green Arrow: £211,925   Hawkeye: £2321

Round 2: Joining The Team

With the result of the last round being what it was I wasn’t expecting this one to be as close as it ended up being. Both of our archers are both hughely associated with the JLA and The Avengers respectively. They share the common ground of being mortal human heroes along side super powered beings that everyone knows and loves. the Justice League debuted a whole three years before Stan Lee borrowed the team of existing heroes idea for Marvel in creating The Avengers. Oliver Queen joined League ranks in #4 (£3714) a mere nineteen years after his creation by Mort Weisinger and George Papp. While Hawkeye only had to wait a year from creation to joing Earths Mightiest Heroes, he did have to wait till #16 (£2321) long after all the memorable characters had already been introduced. So three years of existence can easily explain the £1000 price difference I also believe this is the first signs of the knock on effect of the MCU and goodness to Stan Lee driving up prices.

After Two Rounds:  Green Arrow: £215,639   Hawkeye: £4642

Round 3: Going Solo

In another strange turn of events in this face of bow wielding heroes both first received solo mini series in 1983. On DC’s side of things that seems very conservative given he first appeared in 1941! Even Hawkeye having to wait twenty odd years between joining the premier super hero team to getting his own solo seems a lot. Green Arrow wasn’t absent during this time he was the back up in More Fun Comics and later Adventure Comics for years. Being the back up to Superman kept him in the readers eye. Hawkeye on the other hand was only in Avengers. Much of his solo success came after 1983. When he was co-founder of the West Coast Avengers and then he was in nearly every issue fo Solo Avengers. This time around I thought I would look at the valuation of all four issues rather than just the first. Hawkeye #1-#4 are the singular vision of much respected creator Mark Gruenwald. All four issues come in at an underwhelming £3.50. Green Arrow #1-#4 are the work of Mike W. Barr and the great Trevor Von Eeden. Again it seems GA holds all the trick arrows with his mini series coming in for a combined price of £62, with #1 being the highest value at £23.

After Three Rounds:  Green Arrow: £215,701  Hawkeye: £4656

Round 4: Death & Resurrection

All great comic book characters face death and then life. For this two it is no different. Both had to bite the bullet in the most heroic of fashions and then return to a new era of popularity. Green Arrow has even reached the light at the end of the tunnel on the small screen. Where as many thought Hawkeye would suffer a similar fate in the MCU, because lets face it he didn’t do much. Hawkeye met his demise in the modern era under the pen of Brian Bendis as part of The Avengers Disassembled story arc which saw the current roster pushed to the max. #502 is the one to track down for the ultimate sacrifice, it is currently valued at £4.30. Again under the stewardship of Bendis Hawkeyes return to the world of the living was first teased in House of M #8 in a brilliant panel showing his costume on the remains of Avengers Mansion with his team mates asking “What does it mean?” His full return was then in New Avengers #26. Both issues carry a valuation of £3.25. Again not bank bursting stuff. With Green Arrow having a ore successful on going series than his Marvel counterpart it allowed him to die on his own terms as such. Chuck Dixon was the man responsible for Green Arrow meet his maker in #101 (£27). Like Hawkeye GA’s return had a tease before the big reveal. Later in the same series there was mention of his return in #137 (£21). Green Arrow was then relaunched for its third volume under Kevin Smith and this first issue comes in at a moderate £10.

After Four Rounds:  Green Arrow: £215,759  Hawkeye: £4666.80

Round 5: Passing The Mantle

The final round sees the face off become a tag team match, because again in a case of coincidence both archers have passed the mantle on to younger heroes in their time. First up we have Connor Hawke created by Kelley Puckett and Jim Aparoin 1994. He first appeared in #0 of Green Arrow Volume 2. This is not a high valued issue at just £3.25 but Connor Hawke is a legacy character who has endured. He held the Green Arrow title in volume 2 after Oliver’sdeath in #101 until the series end in #137. He was a big part of volume three under Kevin Smith and in the last few years he has featured heavily on Arrow from the CW. Kate Bishop first appeared in Young Avengers #1 by Alan Heinberg and Jim Chung. The series would go on to gain a cult like following and Clint should be happy it did as for a Modern Age comic it brings the more than respectable valuation of £157 with it. Kate Bishop would go on to be influential player in Fraction and Aja’s Hawkeye. before getting her own ongoing in 2016 and leading a new incarnation of the West Coast Avengers in 2018. Of course anything related to Kate Bishop is going to recieve a boost in valuation with the incoming Disney+ series.

After Five Rounds:  Green Arrow: £215,762.25  Hawkeye: £4823.80

Tale of The Tape

After the first round there was really no way back for Hawkeye. It just goes to show that the age of the specualtor born out of the popularity of the MCU is no match for the Golden Age. There are however  few ways of levelling the playing field. Like I said in round one you could half More Fun Comics #73 valuation. Giving Green Arrow a total of £109,799.75. Then you could also take into account that Hawkeye has not always been Hawkeye where as Green Arrow has always been the Emerald Archer. In Clint’s illustrious career as a hero he has also gone by the monikers of Goliath, Golden Archer and Ronin. Adding all of those first apperances togther gives Hawkeye a total of £4955.55. Even with these new prices the gap is still nearly double. I have always preferred Green Arrow over Hawkeye. He just seems a more rounded character with more points of interest going for him. That said I was excited to see Hawkeye make his big screen debut in Thor, I think just because it ws another building block falling into place. With MCU having reached its pinnacle perhaps Hawkeye related comics are at thier highest ever. Perhaps the Disney+ will see another rise. I think the valuations I uncovered at bits a business I read in my research back up that Green Arrow is the better character. I wonder how much these prices aw a rise with the success of the Arrow TV show, but I like to think it is down to good comics!

As always all prices were provided by comicspriceguide.com for 9.8 NM/M

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