Golden Age Top-4

Welcome to the Top 4 database of the most valuable comic books in the world. For the first time, a comprehensive list of copies are available for viewing in one place, with the option to upload your own scans. Each book is listed by grade, highest to lowest, starting with unrestored CGC grades, then restored CGC, incomplete CGC, and finally raw copies.


Considered the holy grail of comic books, Superman's introduction to the world is the genesis of our modern mythology, opening the floodgates to a vast array of superheroes that have since become ingrained in modern culture. Action #1 hit the newsstands April 19, 1938 with little fanfare and a print run of 202,000 copies. Thanks to DC publisher Harry Donenfeld's shrewd negotiations with distributors, nearly 130,000 of those copies made it into the hands of youngsters across the U.S. and Canada. After nearly 75 years, it's estimated 100 copies have survived the perils of time, with a new discovery every one to two years. Of those, only four hail from pedigreed collections to date, Mile High, Kansas City, Larson and Billy Wright. Recently a high grade copy of this book has sold for more than $3 million, setting a new record for vintage comics.

Uploaded Copies: 44

Batman's first appearance offered the classic antithesis to Superman, establishing the spectrum of the superhero. Like Superman, Batman spawned his own multitude of imitators, even occasionally eclipsing the Man of Steel in popularity over the decades. Detective #27 went on sale April 18, 1939, almost exactly a year after Action #1, with a possibly larger but still modest print run. The number of estimated copies to survive are similar, with four from pedigree collections, Allentown, Mile High, Billy Wright, and Lost Valley. An 8.0 copy auctioned for over $1 million just a week after an 8.0 Action #1 broke the million dollar barrier, reinforcing Detective #27's significance in pop culture history.

Uploaded Copies: 38

Besides the first appearance of the Human Torch and Sub-Mariner, Marvel Comics #1's main significance is inaugurating the namesake of comicdom's most popular publisher, Marvel. After many changes throughout the '40s and '50s, and Stan Lee at its helm, Marvel gave the world Spider-man, X-men, Fantastic Four, the Hulk, and many other classic superheroes. Marvel #1 first appeared August 1, 1939, looking more like a pulp, and was even reprinted the next month due to high demand. Most of the existing copies are of the reprint, including all nine pedigree copies from the Mile High, Windy City, Larson, Billy Wright, Allentown, Kansas City, Chicago, Twilight and Denver collections.

Uploaded Copies: 35

A landmark in comic publishing, Superman #1 proved the viability of giving a character his own title. Despite being a near-complete reprint (even the cover is reprinted from the first panel of Action #10), Superman #1 sold extremely well, appearing on the newsstands May 18, 1939. Copies were even offered through a mail-in provided in DC's New York World's Fair issue that same year. Because of the larger print run, Superman #1 is considerably more common than Action #1, Detective #27 and Marvel #1, but ironically it is far scarcer in high grade, presumably because Superman's growing legion of fans repeatedly read and traded their copies. There are an estimated 150-200 existing copies left in the world of which only four hail from pedigree collections: Mile High, Nova Scotia, Larson and Crippen.

Uploaded Copies: 61