NEW ENTRY! Hot Comics #96: Focus on the UK Price Variants of US Marvel Comics

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Why British UK Price Variants SHOULD BE Hot Comics

For years, I called out the foreign comics market as long overdue for increased attention. It took a while, but finally people have clued into the fact that overseas editions of the key comics we know and love are worth pursuing.

I've also been calling out UK price variants. And yet, despite being breathtakingly rare compared to US equivalent books, they still haven't caught up in price.

It's happening, though, you have been warned. If you've been waiting to get in, then don't wait much longer.

What to Invest In

Stick to key issues. The reason these do better is that US buyers recognize those comics as important anyway, and they will return your investment faster as a result.

Here are the identifying marks of UK price variants. First, old currency. Note that old Pounds were 20 shillings (a shilling was written as 1/-), made up of 12d (pennies) per shilling.

UK price variants: old currency, 9dUK price variants: old currency, 9d
UK price variants: old currency, 10dUK price variants: old currency, 10d
UK price variants: old currency, 1/-UK price variants: old currency, 1/-

New currency: decimalization in 1971 led to a new Pound being made up of 100 pennies.

UK price variants: new currency, 6pUK price variants: new currency, 6p
UK price variants: new currency, 8pUK price variants: new currency, 8p
UK price variants: new currency, 10pUK price variants: new currency, 10p
UK price variants: new currency, 12pUK price variants: new currency, 12p
UK price variants: new currency, 15pUK price variants: new currency, 15p
UK price variants: new currency, 20pUK price variants: new currency, 20p

Why do UK price variants matter?

UK price variants were (with some exceptions) simply the identical equivalent of the US edition, with a different cover. The cover often featured a blank where the month would normally go, because of the unpredictable time it took to transport the comics to the UK on ships.

UK Price Variants; X-Men #2 showing the blank monthUK Price Variants; X-Men #2 showing the blank month

Comparing US Marvels with the UK editions in the CGC census, we can see how much scarcer they are. Here are some examples, showing the number of US and UK editions in the census, plus the highest-graded UK price variant to date.

I threw in a couple of Bronze Age keys to see if the trend changed over time.


  • FF #1
  • JIM #83
  • AF #15
  • Hulk #1
  • ASM #1
  • XM #1
  • DD #1
  • TTA #27
  • TOS #39
  • TOD #10
  • IM #55

US Copies

  • 2023
  • 1839
  • 2518
  • 1490
  • 3420
  • 4626
  • 5199
  • 992
  • 2085
  • 4556
  • 5108

UK Copies

  • 38 (1.87%)
  • 34 (1.82%)
  • 59 (2.34%)
  • 46 (3.08%)
  • 84 (2.46%)
  • 96 (2.08%)
  • 109 (2.1%)
  • 19 (1.92%)
  • 54 (2.56%)
  • 111 (2.44%)
  • 106 (2.08%)

Highest UK

  • 6.5
  • 8.5
  • 7.0
  • 7.5
  • 8.5
  • 9.2
  • 8.5
  • 8.0
  • 7.5
  • 9.6
  • 9.4

Consistently, UK price variants make up less than 3 percent of the census. You'd think they would be worth at least three or four times as much as US editions.

Yet, despite the Canadian price variants of the 1980s being popular and trading for a premium over US prices, the UK variants sell for LESS!

This must change over time. Get into this market, while it's still relatively affordable.

A note on page quality.

It's very common for UK homeowners to keep "junk" in their attics. Basements are quite unusual in most parts of the country. This exposed comic books to temperature fluctuations, and consequently examples of UK price variants with white pages can be considered genuinely rare.

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