Key Comic Books From 1984

March 1, 2021

1984 — 75 cent variants continue!

Key comics from 1984

There are two main ways I’ve seen online lists of key comic books presented by year: (1) personalized lists based upon judgment calls of what is “key” (thereby omitting any comic books the particular writer doesn’t happen to consider key — or doesn’t know about), and (2) lists based upon high sales price data (also a flawed method because high prices can just as easily be caused by a non-key book happening to grade a 10 at CGC)

The top 100 key comic books from 1984 list you’re about to see is neither of those other types.

Instead, to briefly repeat the introduction I gave on the main 1980’s page, the list I’m about to present is essentially “crowd-sourced”… by the crowd of collectors sending comics to CGC. All I’ve done here is to rank the universe of comic books published in 1984, according to how many copies of each issue have passed through CGC’s doors to date (as of 1/19/2021) to reveal the comic books with the highest census counts — that’s it!

This exercise should “tease out” a very interesting list of important and/or key comic books from 1984, but this will not necessarily be an all-encompassing list (if very few copies were created for a given key, for example, that restricted supply could keep the count of CGC submissions low even though the comic is very important — this exercise will unfortunately see such comics sort themselves off of the bottom through no fault of their own). So essentially, you should think of this list as just one more tool in your tool-belt of researching key comic books from 1984.

Key Comic Books From 1984:

(Top 100 list based on census data as of January 19, 2021)
Rank CGC Count Issue Publisher/
Date
1. 17,050 Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #8 Marvel
12/84
  Origin of the alien symbiote that eventually becomes Venom.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.00 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
2. 13,274 Amazing Spider-Man #252 Marvel
5/84
  Ties with Marvel Team-Up #141 for 1st appearance of the black costume. Amazing Fantasy #15 cover homage.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
3. 5,057 Tales of the Teen Titans #44 D.C.
7/84
  Dick Grayson becomes Nightwing. 1st appearance of Jericho. Origin of Deathstroke.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 95¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
4. 3,224 Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #1 Marvel
5/84
  Jim Shooter story. Mike Zeck & John Beatty art. Mike Zeck cover.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.00 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
5. 3,171 Transformers #1 Marvel
9/84
  Origin & 1st comic appearance of the Autobots & the Decepticons.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.00 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
6. 2,529 Marvel Team-Up #141 Marvel
5/84
  Ties with Amazing Spider-Man #252 for first appearance of the black costume. Daredevil & Black Widow appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
7. 1,460 G.I. Joe, A Real American Hero #21 Marvel
3/84
  1st appearance of Storm Shadow. Silent issue.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
8. 1,292 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #2 Mirage Studios
1984
  First appearance of April O’Neil & the Mousers. Pin-up by Laird & Foster. Wraparound cover. Wraparound cover.
9. 1,122 Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #7 Marvel
11/84
  1st appearance of the new Spider-Woman (Julia Carpenter).
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.00 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
10. 994 Thor #339 Marvel
1/84
  1st appearance of Stormbreaker. Beta Ray Bill appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
11. 980 New Mutants #18 Marvel
8/84
  1st appearance of new Warlock.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
12. 969 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1 Mirage Studios
1984
  Origin & 1st app. of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Splinter & Shredder. Wraparound cover.
13. 850 Spectacular Spider-Man #90 Marvel
5/84
  1st black costume in title. Black Cat appearance. Vision & Scarlet Witch cameo.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
14. 831 Detective Comics #27 D.C.
1984
  Oreo Cookies giveaway. Reprints 1st appearance of Batman from Detective Comics #27
15. 816 Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #3 Marvel
7/84
  1st appearance of Volcana (Marsha Rosenberg) & the new Titania (Mary “Skeeter” MacPherran).
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.00 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
16. 765 Batman #368 D.C.
2/84
  Jason Todd officially becomes the 2nd Robin.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 95¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
17. 721 Amazing Spider-Man #258 Marvel
11/84
  Spider-Man’s new costume revealed to be an alien symbiote. Mr. Fantastic, Human Torch, Black Cat & Hobgoblin appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
18. 715 Amazing Spider-Man #256 Marvel
9/84
  1st appearance of Puma (Thomas Fireheart). Black Cat & Rose appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
19. 695 Uncanny X-Men #184 Marvel
8/84
  1st appearance of Forge. Selene appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
20. 695 Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #4 Marvel
8/84
  Jim Shooter story. Bob Layton & John Beatty art. Bob Layton cover.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.00 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
21. 677 New Mutants #14 Marvel
4/84
  1st Illyana Rasputin as Magik. S’ym appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
22. 668 Power Pack #1 Marvel
8/84
  Origin & 1st appearance of Power Pack (Alex, Julie, Jack & Katie Power).
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.25 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
23. 643 Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #5 Marvel
9/84
  Jim Shooter story. Bob Layton & John Beatty art. Bob Layton & Bob Wiacek cover.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.00 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
24. 641 Amazing Spider-Man #259 Marvel
12/84
  Origin of Mary Jane Watson. Hobgoblin, Rose, Mister Fantastic & She-Hulk appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
25. 623 Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #6 Marvel
10/84
  Jim Shooter story. Mike Zeck & John Beatty art. Bob Layton cover.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.00 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
26. 588 Transformers #2 Marvel
11/84
  Bill Mantlo & Jim Salicrup story. Frank Springer & Kim DeMulder art. Michael Golden cover.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.00 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
27. 573 Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #2 Marvel
6/84
  Jim Shooter story. Mike Zeck & John Beatty art. Mike Zeck cover.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.00 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
28. 570 Uncanny X-Men #186 Marvel
10/84
  Forge appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.25 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
29. 564 New Teen Titans v2 #1 D.C.
8/84
  Marv Wolfman story. George Perez cover & art.
30. 561 Macross #1 Comico
12/84
  Wraparound cover.
31. 561 Amazing Spider-Man #250 Marvel
3/84
  Hobgoblin appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
32. 546 Amazing Spider-Man #253 Marvel
6/84
  1st appearance of the Rose.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
33. 515 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 1 Second Printing Mirage Studios
6/84
  Origin & 1st app. of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Splinter & Shredder. Wraparound cover.
34. 505 Amazing Spider-Man #255 Marvel
8/84
  1st appearance of the Black Fox (Raul Chalmers). Red Ghost & Super Apes appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
35. 476 New Mutants #16 Marvel
6/84
  1st appearance of Thunderbird II (James Proudstar) who later becomes Warpath.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
36. 475 Saga of the Swamp Thing #20 D.C.
1/84
  Alan Moore’s run on Swamp Thing begins.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 95¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
37. 469 Thor #344 Marvel
6/84
  1st appearance of Malekith.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
38. 456 Amazing Spider-Man #254 Marvel
7/84
  Jack O’Lantern appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
39. 450 Uncanny X-Men #188 Marvel
12/84
  Forge appearance. Magneto cameo.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
40. 437 Amazing Spider-Man #251 Marvel
4/84
  Hobgoblin appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
41. 429 Uncanny X-Men #179 Marvel
3/84
  1st appearance of Leech. Callisto & Morlocks appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
42. 392 Amazing Spider-Man 252 Canadian Price Variant Marvel
5/84
  Ties w/ Marvel Team-Up #141 for 1st app. of the black costume. Amazing Fantasy #15 cover homage.
43. 377 Uncanny X-Men #183 Marvel
7/84
  Juggernaut & Selene appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
44. 337 Amazing Spider-Man #257 Marvel
10/84
  2nd appearance of Puma. Black Cat, Hobgoblin, Rose & Kingpin appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
45. 325 Incredible Hulk #300 Marvel
10/84
  Daredevil, Spider-Man, Iron Fist, Luke Cage, Human Torch, Avengers & Doctor Strange appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.25 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
46. 319 Amazing Spider-Man #249 Marvel
2/84
  Hobgoblin vs. Kingpin.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
47. 317 Kitty Pryde and Wolverine #1 Marvel
11/84
  Chris Claremont story. Al Milgrom cover & art.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.00 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
48. 317 Uncanny X-Men #178 Marvel
2/84
  Brotherhood of Evil Mutants appearance. Letter from Colleen Doran.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
49. 313 Saga of the Swamp Thing #21 D.C.
2/84
  New origin of Swamp Thing. Floronic Man appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 95¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
50. 303 Uncanny X-Men #185 Marvel
9/84
  Forge appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
51. 299 Star Trek #1 D.C.
2/84
  Mike W. Barr story. Tom Sutton & Ricardo Villagran art. George Perez cover.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 95¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
52. 298 Uncanny X-Men #177 Marvel
1/84
  Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, Arcade & Miss Locke appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
53. 297 Uncanny X-Men #180 Marvel
4/84
  Cypher appearance. Emma Frost cameo.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
54. 297 Uncanny X-Men #181 Marvel
5/84
  Sunfire appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
55. 278 Marvel Age #12 Marvel
3/84
  Spider-Man’s black costume concept art. Pre-dates Amazing Spider-Man #252
56. 275 Star Wars #81 Marvel
3/84
  Return of Boba Fett.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
57. 273 Phoenix #1 Marvel
4/84
  Wraparound cover.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
58. 273 Saga of the Swamp Thing #25 D.C.
6/84
  Jason Blood appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 95¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
59. 268 Amazing Spider-Man #248 Marvel
1/84
  Thunderball appearance. “The Kid Who Collects Spider-Man” back-up story.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
60. 244 Uncanny X-Men #182 Marvel
6/84
  Rogue solo story. Nick Fury, Emma Frost & Sebastian Shaw cameo.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
61. 242 Albedo #2 Thoughts & Images
11/84
  1st appearance of Usagi Yojimbo. Letters from Peter Laird & Don Thompson.
62. 227 Uncanny X-Men #187 Marvel
11/84
  Forge & Dire Wraiths appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
63. 217 Star Wars: Return of the Jedi #4 Marvel
1/84
  Movie adaptation.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
64. 212 Fury of Firestorm #23 D.C.
5/84
  1st appearance of Felicity Smoak.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 95¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
65. 209 New Teen Titans #39 D.C.
2/84
  Last Dick Grayson as Robin. Kid Flash quits.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 95¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
66. 197 Marvel Fumetti Book #1 Marvel
4/84
  Photo cover.
67. 196 Fury of Firestorm #24 D.C.
6/84
  1st appearance of Blue Devil (Dan Cassidy) in 16 page preview story.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 95¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
68. 194 Doctor Who #1 Marvel
10/84
  3 page text feature illustrated by Walt Simonson.
69. 194 G.I. Joe, A Real American Hero #26 Marvel
8/84
  Origin of Snake-Eyes & Storm Shadow. “Death” of the Hard Master.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
70. 189 Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars 8 Canadian Price Variant Marvel
12/84
  Origin alien symbiote that eventually becomes Venom. $1.00 cover price.
71. 178 Flaming Carrot #1 Aardvark-Vanaheim
5/84
  Bob Burden story, cover & art.
72. 175 Grendel #3 Comico
2/84
  Matt Wagner story, cover & art.
73. 168 Iceman #1 Marvel
12/84
  J.M. DeMatteis story. Al Kupperberg & Mike Gustovich art. Mike Zeck & John Beatty cover.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.00 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
74. 166 Alpha Flight #17 Marvel
12/84
  X-Men appearance. X-Men #109 cover homage.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
75. 162 G.I. Joe, A Real American Hero #27 Marvel
9/84
  Origin of Snake-Eyes & Storm Shadow.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
76. 157 X-Men Annual #8 Marvel
1984
  Chris Claremont story. Steve Leialoha cover & art.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
77. 156 Rocketeer Special Edition #1 Eclipse
11/84
  Pin-ups by Gray Morrow, William Stout, Murphy Anderson, Michael Wm. Kaluta, Russ Heath, Doug Wildey & Bruce Jones.
78. 155 G.I. Joe, A Real American Hero 21 Third Printing Marvel
3/84
  1st appearance of Storm Shadow. Silent issue.
79. 153 Tales of the Teen Titans Annual #3 D.C.
1984
  Conclusion of the Judas Contract. “Death” of Terra. Indicia reads Teen Titans Annual #3
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
80. 152 Captain America #300 Marvel
12/84
  “Death” of the Red Skull. Falcon & Nomad appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
81. 151 Thor #340 Marvel
2/84
  Beta Ray Bill appearance. Letter from Arthur Adams.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
82. 148 New Mutants #13 Marvel
3/84
  1st appearance of Cypher (Doug Ramsey). Magma joins the New Mutants.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
83. 147 Vanguard Illustrated #2 Pacific
1/84
  1st appearance of the Stargrazers.
84. 146 New Mutants #19 Marvel
9/84
  Starjammers appearance.
85. 145 Batman #367 D.C.
1/84
  Poison Ivy appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 95¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
86. 142 West Coast Avengers #1 Marvel
9/84
  Roger Stern story. Bob Hall & Brett Breeding cover & art.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $1.50 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
87. 142 Tales of the Teen Titans #43 D.C.
6/84
  Part 2 of “The Judas Contract”.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 95¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
88. 141 Superman #400 D.C.
10/84
  Howard Chaykin cover. Anniversary issue. Back cover pin-up by Frank Miller.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $2.00 newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
89. 140 Justice League of America Annual #2 D.C.
1984
  Intro new Justice League. 1st appearance of Vibe (Paco Ramone), Gypsy (Cynthia Reynolds) & Steel (Hank Heywood III).
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
90. 139 X-Men and the Micronauts #1 Marvel
1/84
  New Mutants appearance.
91. 134 Star Wars #90 Marvel
12/84
  Mon Mothma, Kiro & Admiral Ackbar appearance
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
92. 134 Star Wars #88 Marvel
10/84
  1st appearance of Lumiya. Mon Mothma appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
93. 133 Amazing Spider-Man Annual #18 Marvel
12/84
  Stan Lee script. Scorpion appearance. J. Jonah Jameson & Marla Madison wed.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
94. 133 Thor #341 Marvel
3/84
  Nick Fury appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
95. 132 Thor #350 Marvel
12/84
  Beta Ray Bill appearance.
96. 129 Blue Devil #1 D.C.
6/84
  Gary Cohn & Dan Mishkin story. Paris Cullins & Pablo Marcos art. Paris Cullins & Dick Giordano cover.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 95¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
97. 120 G.I. Joe, A Real American Hero #24 Marvel
6/84
  1st appearance of Firefly & Wild Weasel. Zartan cameo on last page.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
98. 119 Star Wars #86 Marvel
8/84
  Story takes place before “Return of the Jedi.” Governor Wessel appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
99. 119 Star Wars #79 Marvel
1/84
  Jo Duffy story. Ron Frenz & Tom Palmer cover & art.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 75¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
100. 118 Batman #369 D.C.
3/84
  Deadshot appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized 95¢ newsstand cover price variant is confirmed to exist
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