Any copy of Fantastic Fantasy #15, featuring the very first appearance of Marvel’s Spider Man, is already an incredibly valuable comic. A graded copy in absolutely terrible condition recently sold on eBay for $13,700. That’s the low end. Now imagine what a replica that actually belonged to the man who helped create Spider-Man could be worth.
We have to find out, because just such a copy of Fantastic Fantasy #15 and all the early issues of Spider-Man once owned by Spider-Man co-creator Steve Ditko are going up for auction next month. According to PBA Galleries websiteincludes their upcoming auction “Spider-Man artist and co-creator Steve Ditko’s personal collection of Spider-Man comics that includes Fantastic Fantasy #15, Amazing Spider-Man #’s are 1-38, and Amazing Spider-Man Annuals #s 1 & 2.” Each copy is “CGC certified “FROM THE COLLECTION OF STEVE DITKO,” and comes with an illustrated certificate of authenticity from the Ditko Estate, signed by the artist’s brother, Patrick Ditko.”
Steve Ditko co-created Spider-Man with Stan Lee during their time at Marvel. He designed the character’s iconic costume and drew (and eventually co-wrote) the book from 1962 until he and Lee had a falling out in 1966. Ditko continued to work in comics for the rest of his life, even turning and to return to Marvel over the years, but he largely shunned the limelight, almost never giving interviews and not appearing at comic conventions or autograph signings. He died in June 2018. Ditko was so reclusive, in fact, that the auction will also include “original photos” of the late artist that came from the estate of Ditko’s college friend, Eric Stanton.
Ditko’s complex life and legacy were the subject of a 2007 BBC documentary titled In Search of Steve Ditko.
The live auction of Ditko’s personal collection will take place on Thursday, December 8 at 11:00 a.m. PST.
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