Top 10: Superman memorabilia
10) Supermen of America Ring - $30,000
The Supermen of America Club had 1,600 members in 1940. These members were issued with Supermen of America rings, of which there are thought to be only 20 left in existence. If in mint condition, these are valued at around $30,000, and a Very Fine Grade ring was sold on eBay for $13,100 in March 2010.
9) Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster “Reign of the Superman” – Science Fiction Fanzine V1#3 and Others (1933) - $47,800
This is the true first Superman story ever written by Jerry Siegel, and the first Superman image by Joe Shuster, appearing five years before Action Comics #1. It was produced at their high school. While this is not the Superman fans know and love, it is a significant part of his birth and history, and sold for $47,800 in September 2006.
8) Alex Ross Superman: 20th Century Painting Original Art (1998) - $52,281.25
Comic book artist Alex Ross produced what is probably the closest to the standard iconic Superman image in this modern painting of a cityscape with Superman above, and the original painting, signed by Ross, sold for $52,281.25 in November 2011 at Heritage Auctions.
7) Superman #6 (DC, 1940) with signed portrait - $56,762.50
The front cover of Superman #6 is signed “Very truly yours, Clark Kent (Superman)”. A particularly nice copy sold for $56,762.50 in February 2009.
6) Superman #1 (DC, 1939) - $83,650
The first comic series to devote itself entirely to one character, as yet unproven in popularity, and the first issue of that series – this is a significant piece of history for the comic book industry and much sought-after. The cover is by Joe Shuster, Superman’s co-creator. It was sold in February 2004 for $47,150 and in January 2007 for $83,650.
5) Fred Ray Action Comic #46 Superman Cover Original Art (DC, 1942) - $101,575
Superman cover artist of the early 1940s Fred Ray defined what was to become the iconic imagery behind some of the world’s greatest superheroes. Fred Ray illustrated fifteen covers of Action Comics, of which this was one. It sold for $51,750 in August 2005, and for $101,575 in November 2011.
4) Christopher Reeve Complete Superman Costume - $115,000
The costume worn by Christopher Reeve in the filming of Superman I and II (1978). The costume is the famous blue body suit with red and yellow S, yellow belt, and red trunks, boots and cape. This item sold for $115,000 in April 2007 at Profiles in History.
3) Cheque that bought the rights to Superman - $160,000
The cheque written by DC to Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster for a mere $130, buying the rights to their creation Superman, was sold in April 2012 for an incredible £160,000.
2) Andy Warhol Superman painting - $1,769,500
In May 2002 Andy Warhol’s painting of Superman, dated 1981, sold for $1,769,500 at Sothebys. This painting was part of Warhol’s 1980s Myths series, presenting in typical Warhol style a modern day myth: that of the superhero, and more specifically, that of icons in American culture.
1) Action Comics #1 (DC, 1938) - $2.16 million
The comic featuring the introduction of Superman and one of the most desirable comics in the world. This work single-handedly transformed the comic book industry. Different copies of this were sold for $1 million in February 2010, $1.5 million in March 2010, however, a CGC 9.0 graded copy, the best to appear on the market, became the world’s first comic book to sell for over $2 million in November 2011, fetching $2.16 million.