Have you ever taken a moment to pause from the oozing wonder of a classic four color tale, and linger on the ads that your favorite old comic book has within it?
While flipping through a most unlikely source for inspiration tonight, Vault Of Evil # 4 from 1973 by Marvel, I couldn't help but notice how many amazing ads were within just this one issue.
Forget all the John The Baptist-esqe issues like Marvel Premiere # 19's Hulk # 181 preview ad. Or just other generic house ads from the silver & bronze age foretelling the sheer amazement awaiting you next month. I'm taking about the paid ads. The ones that kind of enabled/helped to finance comics being published to begin with.
I think you'll be dumbfounded (or in search of the nearest time machine) if you stop and take a minute to read a few. Not only are there pictures and sketches that are absolute dead ringers for famous people (see below pictures), but the sheer availability of Golden & Silver Age comics as well as original comic art, FROM THE SAME TIME PERIOD!, is astounding.
I know this is a thought EVERY comic fanatic has thought before, "If only I could go back in time and be at the newsstand when Action Comics # 1 came out, Or Detective # 27, AF # 15, TOS # 39, etc". But what if you could just go back to the 70's, a time not as far in the past as the late 30's, 40's, 50's, etc., and buy the amazing issues of your dreams at insanely low prices compared to what they sell for today. Oh to dream.
I've seen old guides before where the STATED NM value of a GSX # 1, or ASM # 129 was $12-$15-$20 in the late 70's - early 80's. Can you only imagine what Robert Bell, or Comics Sales company would have sold you one for in 1976?
It's a whimsical world that what if's and if only's inhabit. But these ads just go to show you how attainable the most amazing collections were not so long ago.
Enjoy the photographic proof....