List Of Important Comics From The 1970s

January 13, 2017

A List Of Important Comics From the 1970s

important/key comics from the 1970s
Key Comics From 1970
Key Comics From 1971
Key Comics From 1972
Key Comics From 1973
Key Comics From 1974
Key Comics From 1975
Key Comics From 1976
Key Comics From 1977
Key Comics From 1978
Key Comics From 1979
[ Special Note: in the end of this decade, direct edition comics are invented!  If you are not already in-the-know about the difference between newsstand and direct edition comics see the following: Comic Book Newsstand Editions: Understanding The Difference ]

A great decade in comics, with important implications for cover price variants of later decades — Marvel’s experimentation with 30 cent price variants and 35 cent price variants would take place in this decade, and then as we reach the end of the 70’s we see perhaps one of the most important business decisions of all time take place in comics: the invention of direct edition comics. This invention then sets up the 1980’s for more interesting cover price variants.

There are many “top lists” out there covering important or “key” comics from the 1970s, but the ones I’ve seen are all either based upon individual judgment calls or the high sale prices observed in the marketplace. Judgment calls are great, but not necessarily comprehensive. Meanwhile, high sale prices could just as easily be reflective of, say, a CGC 10 Gem Mint Signature Series copy signed by Stan Lee, versus reflective of the underlying comic being of any great importance.

One surefire way to “tease out” a list of important comics is to consider how many copies have been sent in to CGC to be graded — the more important the comic, the more likely its owner will want to have it graded and slabbed, right? So by ranking comics simply by the number of copies submitted to CGC — removing any judgment call or sales price information — I’d argue we can get to a pretty good list of important key comics! Of course, there are flaws to this exercise which should be kept in mind: for one thing, this submission data is from one snapshot in time (year-end 2016) and there could be plenty of important comics that aren’t recognized as such until some future development gives them renewed attention.  Only a judgment call type of list could reveal such overlooked candidates.  And another flaw is that any low print run comics might sort themselves off of the bottom of the list, not because they’re unimportant but because not enough copies were printed to generate a high count of CGC submissions.

So, because of these limitations, please don’t anybody think of these lists as a “rank” of importance or as being an all-encompassing list… all we’re ranking here is the sheer number of copies that have passed through CGC’s doors as of year-end 2016 and presenting the top fifty. That’s it! This data should give us a very interesting list, but this list is no replacement for judgement and no replacement for pricing data — it is simply one more tool for our tool-belt as we study interesting and rare comics like the ones I enjoy writing about on this blog! With that caveat stated, without further ado, here is a list of 50 important comics from the 1970s. [ I’ve also posted more lists of key comic books by year including other decades; special thanks goes to Greg Holland whose research website was the tool that made these pages possible to assemble ].

A List Of Important Comics From The 1970s:

(Census data as of year-end 2016)

Rank CGC Count Issue Date Publisher
1. 8,909 Incredible Hulk #181 11/74 Marvel Comics
2. 7,771 Amazing Spider-Man #129 2/74 Marvel Comics
3. 6,163 Giant-Size X-Men #1 Summer 1975 Marvel Comics
4. 5,921 Star Wars #1
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized cover price variant is confirmed to exist
7/77 Marvel Comics
5. 4,916 X-Men #94 8/75 Marvel Comics
6. 4,033 Spectacular Spider-Man #1 12/76 Marvel Comics
7. 3,747 Amazing Spider-Man #121 6/73 Marvel Comics
8. 3,293 Amazing Spider-Man #122 7/73 Marvel Comics
9. 3,129 Iron Fist #14
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized cover price variant is confirmed to exist
8/77 Marvel Comics
10. 3,067 Amazing Spider-Man #194 7/79 Marvel Comics
11. 2,766 Incredible Hulk #180 10/74 Marvel Comics
12. 2,734 Conan the Barbarian #1 10/70 Marvel Comics
13. 2,518 Iron Man #55 2/73 Marvel Comics
14. 2,465 X-Men #101 10/76 Marvel Comics
15. 2,390 Amazing Spider-Man #100 9/71 Marvel Comics
16. 2,370 Ms. Marvel #1 1/77 Marvel Comics
17. 2,279 Spider-Woman #1 4/78 Marvel Comics
18. 2,270 Nova #1 9/76 Marvel Comics
19. 1,983 Marvel Premiere #15 5/74 Marvel Comics
20. 1,916 X-Men #100
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized cover price variant is confirmed to exist
8/76 Marvel Comics
21. 1,856 Marvel Spotlight #5 8/72 Marvel Comics
22. 1,820 X-Men #121 5/79 Marvel Comics
23. 1,705 Daredevil #158 5/79 Marvel Comics
24. 1,687 X-Men #95 10/75 Marvel Comics
25. 1,656 Ghost Rider #1 9/73 Marvel Comics
26. 1,638 Black Panther #1 1/77 Marvel Comics
27. 1,615 Incredible Hulk #182 12/74 Marvel Comics
28. 1,557 Batman #232 6/71 D.C. Comics
29. 1,536 Werewolf By Night #32 8/75 Marvel Comics
30. 1,535 Green Lantern #76 4/70 D.C. Comics
31. 1,508 Shazam #1 2/73 D.C. Comics
32. 1,500 Hero For Hire #1 6/72 Marvel Comics
33. 1,477 Daredevil #131 3/76 Marvel Comics
34. 1,476 X-Men #96 12/75 Marvel Comics
35. 1,446 Amazing Spider-Man #101 10/71 Marvel Comics
36. 1,388 House of Secrets #92 6-7/71 D.C. Comics
37. 1,336 Iron Fist #1 11/75 Marvel Comics
38. 1,326 Tomb of Dracula #10 7/73 Marvel Comics
39. 1,306 Doctor Strange #1 6/74 Marvel Comics
40. 1,288 Marvel Spotlight #32 2/77 Marvel Comics
41. 1,282 Swamp Thing #1 10-11/72 D.C. Comics
42. 1,222 X-Men #119 3/79 Marvel Comics
43. 1,220 X-Men #120 4/79 Marvel Comics
44. 1,211 Marvel Premiere #47 4/79 Marvel Comics
45. 1,205 X-Men #108 12/77 Marvel Comics
46. 1,163 Inhumans #1 10/75 Marvel Comics
47. 1,158 X-Men #125 9/79 Marvel Comics
48. 1,156 Batman #251 9/73 D.C. Comics
49. 1,144 Amazing Spider-Man #97 6/71 Marvel Comics
50. 1,136 Amazing Spider-Man #98 7/71 Marvel Comics
  51-100.   Another 50 key comics from the 1970’s »
   The 1980’s » 

More Important Comics Of The 1970s:

That’s only the top 50! There are many more interesting comics to explore from the 1970’s — to explore further, drill down year-by-year or by publisher:

Key Comics From 1970 [ just Marvel; just D.C.; just other ]
Key Comics From 1971 [ just Marvel; just D.C.; just other ]
Key Comics From 1972 [ just Marvel; just D.C.; just other ]
Key Comics From 1973 [ just Marvel; just D.C.; just other ]
Key Comics From 1974 [ just Marvel; just D.C.; just other ]
Key Comics From 1975 [ just Marvel; just D.C.; just other ]
Key Comics From 1976 [ just Marvel; just D.C.; just other ]
Key Comics From 1977 [ just Marvel; just D.C.; just other ]
Key Comics From 1978 [ just Marvel; just D.C.; just other ]
Key Comics From 1979 [ just Marvel; just D.C.; just other ]

See other lists of key comic books by year, including the 1980’s, 1990’s, and 2000’s.

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