Modern Age Comic Books: Key Issues (1992-2020)

March 1, 2021

Modern Age Comic Books: Key Issues (1992-2020)

Modern age comic books key issues

[ Special Note: during the Modern Age, the distinction between direct edition comics and newsstand comics is absolutely critical for any collector of key modern age comics to understand.  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 ]

It is interesting how the comic book “ages” are carved up, isn’t it? The copper age is just a handful of years from 1984-1991, and then the “modern age” is always listed as “1992-present”… that’s decades! On this page I’m going to cover 1992-2020 (since I’m writing this in March of 2021), but I’d also encourage you to examine keys decade-by-decade at this other page here: lists of key comics by year/decade.

There are many other “top lists” out there covering “key” modern age comic books, but the ones I’ve seen are all either based upon (a) individual judgment calls, or (b) 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 9.9 Signature Series copy signed by Stan Lee, versus reflective of the underlying comic being of any great importance.

How about a different approach?

Here’s what you’re about to see: a different approach to “tease out” a list of modern age comic books to consider collecting, by asking the following question: for each comic book issue of the modern age (1992-2020) that has passed through CGC’s doors to date, how many copies have been graded?

The thinking here is that the more important the comic book as a key modern age issue, the more likely its owner will want to have it professionally graded and slabbed.  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 darn good list of important modern age comic books!

Of course, there are some limitations and flaws to this approach to keep in mind before reviewing the list: for one thing, I wrote this in March 2021, using January 2021 census data, but the modern age is ongoing… So naturally, any key modern age comic book that gets published in the future cannot by definition be included here. Also, because this submission data is from one snapshot in time (January 2021) there could be plenty of important past comics that simply aren’t recognized as such today but might be considered keys after some future development gives them renewed attention.  And a final flaw is that some very-high-value comics simply didn’t have many copies printed; comics with a very restricted print run will naturally sort themselves off of the bottom of a list like this as well [one example that comes to mind is Spawn/The Savage Dragon #1 (1996)].

So I do not want anybody to think of the list you’re about to see as a “rank” of importance, or, as being an all-encompassing list of modern age comic book keys… 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 200. That’s it!  This data should give us a very interesting list, but is in no way a replacement for judgement nor a 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 explanation stated, without further ado, here is the list of 200 modern age comic book key issues. [ I’ve also posted more lists of key comics by year/decade; special thanks goes to Greg Holland whose research website was the tool that made these pages possible to assemble ].

Oh!  One more note! In the list you are going to see some icons that look like this: CGC variant confirmed … These icons indicate the confirmed existence on the CGC census of a more-rare CGC-recognized newsstand variant version of the key modern age comic book in question. As of the date of this writing, CGC only “breaks out” newsstand comics as variants on census in certain special situations like cover price difference and manufacturing differences (read about the special situations I’m aware of here), so when we encounter these special situations they are exciting stand-outs for collectors of modern age keys focused on the more-rare newsstand type versus the prevalent direct edition type.

Modern Age Comic Books: 200 Key Issues

(Top 200 list based on census data as of January 19, 2021)
Rank CGC Count Issue Publisher/
Date
1. 18,461 Amazing Spider-Man #361 Marvel
4/92
  1st full appearance of Carnage (Cletus Kasady).
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand Australian Price Variant is confirmed to exist
2. 16,490 Spawn #1 Image
5/92
  1st appearance of Spawn (Al Simmons). Pitt pin-up by Dale Keown & Spawn pin-up by George Perez. Pull-out Spawn poster.
Newsstand versions of early Spawn comics including #1 are confirmed to exist, but as of this date newsstand copies of #1-3 are not treated as variants by CGC (but ARE treated as variants by CBCS and PGX). As of the date of this writing, CGC begins to break out Spawn newsstand comics as variants starting at issue #4 when newsstand manufacturing differences begin.
3. 9,686 Venom: Lethal Protector #1 Marvel
2/93
  1st Venom in his own title. Spider-Man appearance. Red holo-grafx foil cover.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand Australian Price Variant is confirmed to exist
4. 8,814 Ultimate Fallout #4 Marvel
10/11
  1st appearance of the new Spider-Man (Miles Morales). Poly-bag removed.
Note: Newsstand copies of this issues are “mis-identified” by their UPC code as the “Black Panther” title, and therefore by precedent CGC should be willing to “break out” newsstand copies as distinct census variants, if someone were to submit one and ask!
5. 6,481 Amazing Spider-Man v2 #36 Marvel
12/01
  Amazing Spider-Man #477 9/11 World Trade Center story.
6. 5,347 Amazing Spider-Man #362 Marvel
5/92
  Carnage, Venom & Human Torch appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand Australian Price Variant is confirmed to exist
7. 5,143 NYX #3 Marvel
2/04
  1st appearance of X-23 (Laura Kinney).
8. 4,956 Edge of Spider-Verse #2 Marvel
11/14
  1st appearance of the new Spider-Woman (Gwen Stacy).
9. 4,724 Rai #0 Valiant
11/92
  1st full appearance of Bloodshot. Origin & 1st appearance of new Rai. Harbinger & Solar appearance.
10. 4,272 Outcast #1 Image/Skybound
6/14
  1st appearance of Kyle Barnes.
11. 4,250 Saga #1 Image
3/12
  1st appearance of Marko, Alana, Hazel, Prince Robot IV, Special Agent Gale, Vez, The Will & Lyin
12. 4,030 Amazing Spider-Man #700 Marvel
2/13
  “Death” of Peter Parker. Last issue.
13. 3,978 Amazing Spider-Man #363 Marvel
6/92
  Carnage, Venom, Human Torch & Mister Fantastic appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand Australian Price Variant is confirmed to exist
14. 3,657 Spawn #9 Image
3/93
  1st appearance Medieval Spawn & Angela. Angela poster by Jim Lee.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand variant is confirmed to exist
15. 3,496 Superman: The Man of Steel #18 D.C.
12/92
  1st full appearance of Doomsday.
16. 3,267 Walking Dead #1 Image
10/03
  1st appearance of Rick Grimes, Shane Walsh, Morgan & Duane Jones.
17. 3,255 Batman: Damned #1 D.C.
11/18
  1st DC Black Label title.
18. 3,208 Batman: Vengeance of Bane Special #1 D.C.
1/93
  Origin & 1st appearance of Bane.
19. 3,082 Amazing Spider-Man #365 Marvel
8/92
  1st appearance of Spider-Man 2099. Gatefold Venom/Carnage poster by Mark Bagley. Hologram cover.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand Australian Price Variant is confirmed to exist
20. 3,041 Wolverine: The Origin #1 Marvel
11/01
  Paul Jenkins story. Andy Kubert & Richard Isanove art. Joe Quesada & Richard Isanove cover.
21. 3,029 Batman #497 D.C.
7/93
  Bane breaks Batman’s back. Newsstand edition exists without black outer cover.
22. 2,887 Preacher #1 D.C./Vertigo
4/95
  1st full appearance of Jesse Custer, Tulip, Cassidy & Saint of Killers.
23. 2,860 Year of the Villain: Hell Arisen #3 D.C.
4/20
  1st full appearance of Punchline (Alexis Kaye).
24. 2,777 Amazing Spider-Man #375 Marvel
3/93
  Holo-grafx cover. Story ties in with Venom: Lethal Protector #1 John Jameson & Chameleon backup stories.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand Australian Price Variant is confirmed to exist
25. 2,714 Batman #608 D.C.
12/02
  Catwoman, Killer Croc & Poison Ivy appearance.
26. 2,696 Darth Vader #3 Marvel
5/15
  1st appearance of Doctor Chelli Aphra, Triple Zero (0-0-0) & BT-1.
27. 2,621 Superman #75 D.C.
1/93
  The “Death” of Superman. Gatefold back cover.
28. 2,456 Eternal Warrior #4 Valiant
11/92
  1st appearance of Bloodshot in cameo on last page. 1st appearance of the Immortal Enemy.
29. 2,433 Walking Dead #193 Image/Skybound
7/19
  Last issue.
30. 2,421 X-Men 1 Sketch Cover Marvel
9/10
  Partial blank cover.
31. 2,360 Walking Dead #19 Image
6/05
  1st appearance of Michonne Hawthorne. Zombie bondage cover. “Death” of Dexter. Andrew leaves.
32. 2,354 Avengers #684 Marvel
5/18
  Hulk gains new powers and becomes “Immortal Hulk”.
33. 2,344 John Byrne’s Next Men #21 Dark Horse
12/93
  1st full color appearance of Hellboy. “Faith” storyline part 3 of 4
34. 2,340 Teen Titans #12 D.C.
11/17
  1st full appearance of the Batman Who Laughs.
35. 2,280 Batman: Damned 1 Variant Cover D.C.
11/18
  1st DC Black Label title.
36. 2,274 Totally Awesome Hulk #22 Marvel
10/17
  1st full appearance of Weapon H. Old Man Logan, Sabretooth, Domino, Warpath & Lady Deathstrike a
37. 2,268 Batman: Harley Quinn #nn D.C.
1999
  Origin & 1st appearance of Harley Quinn in DC Universe continuity.
38. 2,242 Batman 92 Variant Cover D.C.
6/20
  Punchline appearance.
39. 2,184 Avenging Spider-Man #9 Marvel
9/12
  1st Carol Danvers as Captain Marvel, predates Captain Marvel #1 (9/12)
40. 2,156 Walking Dead #108 Image/Skybound
3/13
  1st appearance of Ezekiel & Shiva.
41. 2,075 All Star Batman & Robin, the Boy Wonder #1 D.C.
9/05
  2 different covers exist, both by Jim Lee.
42. 2,050 Dark Nights: Death Metal LOTDK #1 D.C.
10/20
  Tony Daniel cover. Origin & 1st app. of the Robin King.
43. 2,036 Amazing Spider-Man #798 Marvel
6/18
  1st Norman Osborn as the Red Goblin.
44. 2,026 The Marvels Project 1 Sketch Cover Marvel
10/09
  Partial blank cover. 70th anniversary “frame” cover.
45. 2,024 Amazing Spider-Man #529 Marvel
4/06
  1st appearance of new Spider-Man costume.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $2.99 cover price newsstand variant is confirmed to exist
46. 1,998 Alias #1 Marvel
11/01
  1st appearance of Jessica Jones. 1st MAX title. Luke Cage appearance.
47. 1,971 Spider-Gwen #1 Marvel
4/15
  Jason Latour story. Robbi Rodriguez cover & art.
48. 1,895 Batman #89 D.C.
4/20
  1st appearance of Punchline in cameo (face not revealed).
49. 1,892 Thief of Thieves #1 Image
2/12
  Robert Kirkman & Nick Spencer story. Shawn Martinbrough cover & art.
50. 1,873 Detective Comics #880 D.C.
9/11
  Scott Snyder story. Jock cover & art.
51. 1,869 Thanos #13 Marvel
1/18
  1st app. of the Cosmic Ghost Rider. Marvel Value Stamp #36 “Storm”
52. 1,822 Walking Dead #27 Image
4/06
  1st appearance of the Governor, Martinez & the town of Woodbury. Pin-up on back cover by Cliff Rathburn.
53. 1,816 Superman #204 D.C.
6/04
  Brian Azzarello story. Jim Lee & Scott Williams cover & art.
54. 1,778 Thor #5 Marvel
6/20
  Thor #731
55. 1,751 Amazing Spider-Man 4 Ramos Variant Cover Marvel
9/14
  Cindy Moon becomes Silk. Black Cat & Morlun cameo.
56. 1,717 Batman Adventures: Mad Love #nn D.C.
2/94
  Origin of Harley Quinn out of D.C. continuity.
57. 1,709 Amazing Spider-Man 583 Variant Edition Marvel
3/09
  President Barack Obama cover & back-up story.
58. 1,684 Wolverine: The Origin #2 Marvel
12/01
  Paul Jenkins story. Andy Kubert & Richard Isanove art. Joe Quesada & Richard Isanove cover.
59. 1,663 Walking Dead #100 Image/Skybound
7/12
  1st appearance of Negan & “Lucille”. “Death” of Glenn.
60. 1,662 Batman #612 D.C.
4/03
  Superman, Catwoman, Poison Ivy, Lois Lane & Krypto appearance. “Black & Bruised” coupon included.
61. 1,653 Iron Man #282 Marvel
7/92
  1st full appearance of War Machine. Nick Fury appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand Australian Price Variant is confirmed to exist
62. 1,638 Batman 608 Second Printing D.C.
12/02
  Catwoman, Killer Croc & Poison Ivy appearance.
63. 1,633 Amazing Spider-Man #607 Marvel
11/09
  Black Cat & Diablo appearance. Ana Kravinov cameo on last page.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $3.99 cover price newsstand variant is confirmed to exist
64. 1,611 Venom 3 Third Printing Marvel
11/18
  Venom #168 1st full appearance of Knull. Spider-Man (Miles Morales) appearance.
65. 1,592 Venom: Lethal Protector #4 Marvel
5/93
  1st appearance of Scream (Donna Diego). Spider-Man appearance.
66. 1,589 Walking Dead 100 Chromium Edition Image/Skybound
7/12
  1st appearance of Negan & “Lucille”. “Death” of Glenn. Wraparound cover.
67. 1,562 Paper Girls #1 Image
10/15
  1st app. of Erin Tieng, Karina “KJ”, MacKenzie “Mac” Coyle & Tiffany Quilkin. Wraparound cover.
68. 1,556 Spawn #2 Image
6/92
  1st appearance of the Violator. Spawn pin-up by Rick Leonardi.
69. 1,553 East of West #1 Image
3/13
  Jonathan Hickman story. Nick Dragotta cover & art.
70. 1,547 War of the Realms: New Agents of Atlas #1 Marvel
7/19
  1st appearance of Luna Snow (Seol Hee), Wave (Pearl Pangan) Crescent (Dan Bi) & Io. 1st U.S. app
71. 1,527 Ultimate Spider-Man 1 Variant Cover Marvel
10/00
  1st “Ultimate” title.
72. 1,509 Superman 75 Poly-Bagged Edition D.C.
1/93
  The “Death” of Superman. Gatefold back cover. Poly-bag removed.
73. 1,503 Walking Dead #2 Image
11/03
  1st appearance of Lori & Carl Grimes & Glenn. “Heaven’s War” preview.
74. 1,500 Batman #635 D.C.
2/05
  1st Jason Todd as Red Hood. Mister Freeze & Black Mask appearance.
75. 1,493 Captain America 25 Wizard World Los Angeles Editi Marvel
4/07
  Captain America #574. “Death” of Captain America (Steve Rogers). Wizard World Los Angeles 2007 exclusive.
76. 1,466 Walking Dead #192 Image/Skybound
6/19
  “Death” of Rick Grimes.
77. 1,464 Ultimate Fallout 4 Second Printing Marvel
10/11
  1st appearance of the new Spider-Man (Miles Morales).
78. 1,456 Incredible Hulk #449 Marvel
1/97
  1st appearance of the Thunderbolts (Citizen V, Meteorite, Techno, MACH-1, Songbird & Atlas).
79. 1,451 Y: The Last Man #1 D.C./Vertigo
9/02
  1st appearance of Yorick & Hero Brown, Ampersand, Agent 355, Dr. Allison Mann, Beth DeVille & Colonel Tse’Elon (Alter).
80. 1,434 Amazing Spider-Man 648 Sketch Edition Marvel
1/11
  Partial blank cover. Fantastic Four, Avengers, Sinister Six, Kingpin & Hobgoblin (Roderick Kingsley) appearance
81. 1,428 Batman #655 D.C.
9/06
  1st app. of Damian in cameo on last two pages of story. Joker appearance. Talia al Ghul cameo.
82. 1,388 Venom #9 Marvel
2/19
  Venom #174 1st full appearance of Dylan Brock.
83. 1,370 Wolverine: The Origin #3 Marvel
1/02
  Paul Jenkins story. Andy Kubert & Richard Isanove art. Joe Quesada & Richard Isanove cover.
84. 1,314 Ultimate Spider-Man #1/2 Marvel-Wizard Pub.
2002
  Danny Rand appearance. Wizard mail-away exclusive.
85. 1,312 Walking Dead #3 Image
12/03
  1st appearance of Allen, Donna, Billy, Ben, Jim, Dale, Carol, Sophia, Amy & Andrea.
86. 1,311 Batman 0 We Can Be Heroes Edition D.C.
11/12
  Back-up story by James Tynion IV with art by Andy Clarke. Partial blank cover.
87. 1,310 Invincible Iron Man #7 Marvel
5/16
  1st appearance of Tomoe. 1st appearance of Riri Williams in cameo on last page. Spider-Man & War
88. 1,304 Death of Wolverine #1 Marvel
11/14
  Holofoil cover.
89. 1,303 Marvel Super-Heroes v2 #8 Marvel
1/92
  Winter Special. 1st app of Squirrel Girl X-Men, Iron Man & Namor stories. 5 pages of pin-ups by Jim Starlin.
90. 1,299 The Boys #1 D.C./Wildstorm
10/06
  1st appearance of Butcher, Terror, Hughie & A-Train.
91. 1,293 Walking Dead #127 Image/Skybound
5/14
  1st appearance of Magna, Luke, Kelly, Connie, Yumiko, Annie, Siddiq & Bernie. “Outcast” preview
92. 1,291 Batman #21 D.C.
6/17
  Lenticular cover.
93. 1,289 Fallen Son: The Death of Captain America 3 Sketch Edition Marvel
7/07
  Captain America. Partial blank cover.
94. 1,280 Venom #26 Marvel
9/20
  1st distributed app. of Virus (intended as 2nd app. but distributed before FCBD 2020 due to COVI
95. 1,279 Immortal Hulk #1 Marvel
8/18
  Incredible Hulk #718 Incredible Hulk #105 cover homage.
96. 1,265 Amazing Spider-Man #360 Marvel
3/92
  1st appearance of Carnage in cameo. Cardiac appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand Australian Price Variant is confirmed to exist
97. 1,264 Civil War 3 Variant Cover Marvel
9/06
  Iron Man vs. Captain America. 1st appearance of Ragnarok as “Thor.”
98. 1,257 Infinity War #1 Marvel
6/92
  Gatefold wraparound cover.
99. 1,256 NYX #4 Marvel
7/04
  1st appearance of Tatiana. X-23 appearance.
100. 1,251 Ultimate Spider-Man 79 Wizard World Chicago Edition Marvel
9/05
  Hammerhead & Moon Knight appearance. Wizard World Chicago 2005 exclusive. Sketch cover.
101. 1,232 Solar, Man of the Atom #10 Valiant
6/92
  16 page Solar insert by Jim Shooter, Barry Windsor-Smith & Bob Layton. Black embossed cover.
102. 1,228 Amazing Spider-Man #606 Marvel
11/09
  Black Cat, Diablo & Madame Web appearance.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $3.99 cover price newsstand variant is confirmed to exist
103. 1,224 Amazing Spider-Man #601 Marvel
10/09
  Jessica Jones appearance & New Avengers cameo in backup story.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $3.99 cover price newsstand variant is confirmed to exist
104. 1,218 Venom: Lethal Protector 1 Gold Edition Marvel
2/93
  Gold holo-grafx foil cover. Venom pin-up by Mark Bagley & Al Milgrom on back cover.
105. 1,201 Invincible #1 Image
1/03
  1st full appearance of Invincible & Omni-Man. Invincible pin-up by Tony Moore.
106. 1,198 Detective Comics #1 D.C.
11/11
  Joker appearance.
107. 1,191 Wolverine v3 #66 Marvel
8/08
  “Old Man Logan” storyline begins. Wraparound cover.
108. 1,182 Wolverine: Origins 1 Wizard World Philadelphia Edit Marvel
6/06
  Wizard World Philadelphia 2006 exclusive Sketch cover.
109. 1,173 Amazing Spider-Man 1 Sketch Edition Marvel
6/14
  Perez art. Partial blank cover.
110. 1,168 Amazing Spider-Man #500 Marvel
12/03
  Doctor Strange appearance.
111. 1,156 Revival #1 Image
7/12
  Tim Seeley story, Mike Norton art
112. 1,149 All-New Marvel Now! Point One #1 Marvel
3/14
  Salvador Larroca cover. 1st full appearance of the new Ms. Marvel (Kamala Khan).
113. 1,145 Venom 25 Second Printing Marvel
9/20
  Venom #190 Wraparound cover.
114. 1,131 Amazing Spider-Man 361 Second Printing Marvel
4/92
  1st full appearance of Carnage (Cletus Kasady). Silver metallic ink cover.
115. 1,125 Wolverine: Origins 6 Wizard World Texas Edition Marvel
11/06
  Wizard World Texas 2006 exclusive. Omega Red & Jubilee appearance. Sketch cover.
116. 1,124 Naomi #1 D.C.
3/19
  1st appearance of Naomi McDuffie.
117. 1,115 Amazing Spider-Man 569 Variant Edition Marvel
10/08
  Eddie Brock becomes Anti-Venom. Thunderbolts (Norman Osborn, Radioactive Man, Songbird, Bullseye & Venom) app.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized cover price newsstand variant is confirmed to exist for the regular cover version of this issue number
118. 1,111 Immortal Hulk #2 Marvel
9/18
  Incredible Hulk #719 1st appearance of Doctor Frye.
119. 1,110 Superman/Batman #1 D.C.
10/03
  Two different covers exist.
120. 1,103 Batman 612 Second Printing D.C.
4/03
  Superman, Catwoman, Poison Ivy, Lois Lane & Krypto appearance. Sketch cover.
121. 1,095 Walking Dead #53 Image
10/08
  1st appearance of Sergeant Abraham Ford, Rosita Espinosa & Eugene Porter. Back cover pin-up by Cliff Rathburn.
122. 1,070 Civil War 1 Variant Cover Marvel
7/06
  “Death” of the New Warriors, Speedfreek, Coldheart & Cobalt Man.
123. 1,068 Strange Academy #1 Marvel
5/20
  1st app of Emily Bright, Doyle Dormammu, Shaylee Moonpeddle, Calvin Morse, Dessy, German, Guslau
124. 1,059 Batman 92 Jimenez Variant Cover D.C.
6/20
  Punchline appearance.
125. 1,059 New X-Men #128 Marvel
8/02
  1st appearance of Fantomex. Professor X reveals to the world that he is a mutant.
126. 1,058 Wolverine: The Origin #4 Marvel
2/02
  Paul Jenkins story. Andy Kubert & Richard Isanove art. Joe Quesada & Richard Isanove cover.
127. 1,057 Simpsons Comics #1 Bongo Group
1993
  Pull-out poster. Flipbook. $1.95 edition does not include poster. Forward by Matt Groening.
128. 1,055 Captain America #34 Marvel
3/08
  2 different covers exist, 1 by Alex Ross & 1 by Steve Epting. James “Bucky” Barnes becomes the new Captain America.
129. 1,046 Thanos 13 Lenticular Cover Marvel
1/18
  1st app. of the Cosmic Ghost Rider. Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #12 cover homage.
130. 1,042 Walking Dead #4 Image
1/04
  Robert Kirkman story. Tony Moore cover & art.
131. 1,037 Civil War 1 Aspen Comics Edition Marvel
7/06
  “Death” of the New Warriors, Speedfreek, Coldheart & Cobalt Man.
132. 1,031 Walking Dead #6 Image
3/04
  “Death” of Jim & Shane.
133. 1,014 Batgirl 23 Variant Cover D.C.
7/18
  Hope Larson story. Minkyu Jung & Jose Marzan Jr. art. Joshua Middleton cover.
134. 1,013 Amazing Spider-Man v2 #30 Marvel
6/01
  Amazing Spider-Man #471 J. Michael Straczynski storyline begins. 1st appearance of Ezekiel & Morlun.
135. 1,010 Ultimate Fantastic Four #1 Marvel
2/04
  Brian Michael Bendis & Mark Millar story. Adam Kubert & Danny Miki art. Bryan Hitch cover.
136. 1,007 Amazing Spider-Man #539 Marvel
4/07
  Return of the black costume. Kingpin appearance. Aunt May in a coma.
137. 1,006 Ultimate Fallout 4 Pichelli Variant/Second Printi Marvel
10/11
  1st appearance of the new Spider-Man (Miles Morales).
138. 1,006 Umbrella Academy nn Free Comic Book Day Edition Dark Horse
4/07
  1st appearance of the Umbrella Academy. Free Comic Book Day 2007 promotional.
139. 1,005 Venom/Deadpool: What If? #1 Marvel
4/11
  Rick Remender story. Shawn Moll art. Skottie Young cover.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized $3.99 cover price newsstand variant is confirmed to exist
140. 1,001 Wolverine: The Origin #5 Marvel
5/02
  Paul Jenkins story. Andy Kubert & Richard Isanove art. Joe Quesada & Richard Isanove cover.
141. 999 Oblivion Song #1 Image/Skybound
3/18
  1st appearance of Nathan Cole, Bridget & Duncan.
142. 998 Batman #609 D.C.
1/03
  1st appearance of Tommy Elliot (Hush). Poison Ivy & Huntress appearance.
143. 996 Ultimate Spider-Man #33 Marvel
2/03
  Eddie Brock appearance.
144. 986 Walking Dead #9 Image
6/04
  “Death” of Donna. 1st appearance of Otis.
145. 985 Chew #1 Image
6/09
  1st full appearance of Tony Chu & Agent Mason Savoy. “Taster’s Choice” part 1
146. 982 Civil War 1 Sketch Cover Marvel
7/06
  “Death” of the New Warriors, Speedfreek, Coldheart & Cobalt Man.
147. 979 Civil War: Front Line 1 Wizard World Chicago Edition Marvel
8/06
  Wizard World Chicago 2006 exclusive. Sketch cover.
148. 972 All Star Batman #1 D.C.
10/16
  Scott Snyder story. Declan Shalvey art. John Romita Jr. cover & art.
149. 964 Dark Nights: The Batman Who Laughs #1 D.C.
1/18
  Origin of the Batman Who Laughs. Foil cover.
150. 963 Harbinger 0 Pink Variant Valiant
1992
  Mail-away.
151. 960 Walking Dead #5 Image
2/04
  “Death” of Amy.
152. 958 Wolverine: Origins 1 Variant Edition Marvel
6/06
  Daniel Way story. Steve Dillon art. Michael Turner cover.
153. 953 Walking Dead #10 Image
7/04
  1st appearance of Hershel, Lacey, Arnold, Maggie, Billy, Rachel & Susie Greene & Patricia.
154. 947 Walking Dead 100 McFarlane Variant Cover Image/Skybound
7/12
  1st appearance of Negan & “Lucille”. “Death” of Glenn.
155. 947 Seven to Eternity #1 Image
9/16
  1st appearance of Adam Osidis.
156. 945 Hulk 1 Wizard World Los Angeles Editi Marvel
3/08
  1st appearance of Red Hulk. Iron Man, Doc Samson, She-Hulk & Winter Guard appearance.
157. 944 New Avengers 1 Variant Cover Marvel
1/05
  Electro, Luke Cage, Spider-Man, Captain America, Matt Murdock, Jessica Drew & Sentry appearance.
158. 942 Ultimate Spider-Man 1 Dynamic Forces Edition Marvel
10/00
  1st “Ultimate” title.
159. 940 Superman/Batman #8 D.C.
5/04
  Kara Zor-El appearance.
160. 938 Green Lantern v3 #48 D.C.
1/94
  1st appearance of Kyle Rayner. Emerald Twilight Part 1
161. 938 Negan Lives! #1 Image/Skybound
7/20
  Robert Kirkman story. Charlie Adlard cover & art.
162. 937 Gotham City Sirens #1 D.C.
8/09
  Paul Dini story. Guillem March cover & art.
163. 937 Redneck #1 Image/Skybound
4/17
  Donny Cates story. Lisandro Estherren cover & art.
164. 935 Catwoman #51 D.C.
3/06
  Black Mask, Bruce Wayne, Slam Bradley & Alfred Pennyworth appearance. Smart Bomb reveals Slam is his father.
165. 932 Walking Dead 100 Second Printing Image/Skybound
8/12
  1st appearance of Negan & “Lucille.” “Death” of Glenn.
166. 927 New Avengers 1 Quesada Variant Cover Marvel
1/05
  Electro, Luke Cage, Spider-Man, Captain America, Matt Murdock, Jessica Drew & Sentry appearance.
167. 926 God Country #1 Image
1/17
  Donny Cates story. Geoff Shaw cover & art.
168. 926 Walking Dead #61 Image
5/09
  1st appearance of Father Gabriel Stokes. “Death” of Billy & Ben. 5 page “Chew” preview by John L
169. 922 Wolverine #75 Marvel
11/93
  Wraparound cover w/ Wolverine hologram. Direct editions contain 8pg “Siege of Darkness” & “Kaybee Toystore” insert.
170. 922 Wolverine #50 Marvel
1/92
  Wolverine’s partial origin retold. X-Men (Professor X, Cyclops, Jean Grey, Forge & Jubilee) app.
171. 921 Fantastic Four 546 Wizard World Philadelphia Edit Marvel
7/07
  Silver Surfer, Gravity, Epoch, Stardust & Galactus appearance. Sketch cover.
172. 915 Wytches #1 Image
10/14
  Scott Snyder story. Jock cover & art.
173. 914 Walking Dead #7 Image
4/04
  1st appearance Tyreese, Julie & Chris. Lori reveals that she is pregnant. Charlie Adlard art begins.
174. 914 Wolverine v3 #20 Wizard World Texas Edition Marvel
12/04
  Wizard World Texas 2004 exclusive. Sketch cover.
175. 911 WildC.A.T.S. #1 Image
8/92
  1st appearance of the WildC.A.T.S. Trading card insert included. Forward by Jim Lee. 1st Wildstorm title.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand variant is confirmed to exist
176. 908 Amazing Spider-Man 400 Die-Cut Cover Marvel
4/95
  “Death” of Aunt May. Embossed wraparound cover.
177. 907 Infinite Crisis #1 D.C.
12/05
  Return of Earth-2 Superman & Lois Lane, Superboy Prime & Alex Luthor. “Death” of Dr. Polaris, Human Bomb & Phantom Lady.
178. 907 Batman 655 Variant Cover D.C.
9/06
  1st app. of Damian in cameo on last two pages of story. Joker appearance. Talia al Ghul cameo.
179. 906 Dark Knight III: The Master Race #1 D.C.
1/16
  Manufactured with “Dark Knight Universe Presents: The Atom #1” mini comic glued to insert.
180. 903 Spawn-Batman #nn Image
5/94
  Frank Miller story. Todd McFarlane cover & art.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand variant is confirmed to exist
181. 902 Walking Dead #92 Image/Skybound
12/11
  1st full appearance of Paul “Jesus” Monroe.
182. 897 All Star Batman 1 Jock Variant Cover D.C.
10/16
  Scott Snyder story. John Romita Jr. & Declan Shalvey art. Jock cover.
183. 891 Dark Knight III: The Master Race 1 Sketch Edition D.C.
1/16
  Partial blank cover. Manufactured with “Dark Knight Universe Presents: The Atom #1” mini comic g
184. 889 San Diego Comic-Con Comics #2 Dark Horse
8/93
  1st appearance of Hellboy. Danger Unlimited & Monkey Man & O’Brien preview. 1993 SDCC promotional.
185. 889 Walking Dead 109 Sketch Edition Image/Skybound
4/13
  Partial blank cover.
186. 886 Amazing Spider-Man 700 Ditko Variant Cover Marvel
2/13
  “Death” of Peter Parker. Last issue.
187. 885 Wolverine 1 Christopher Variant Cover Marvel
4/20
  “Negative Space” variant cover. “Virgin” cover.
188. 879 Secret Invasion 1 Sketch Edition Marvel
6/08
  Partial blank cover.
189. 876 Amazing Spider-Man 700 Martin Variant Cover Marvel
2/13
  “Death” of Peter Parker. Last issue.
190. 874 Transformers: Generation 1 #1 Dreamwave Productions
4/02
  2 different wraparound covers exist. Spike Witwicky appearance.
191. 873 Spawn 1 Black & White Edition Image
9/97
  Todd McFarlane story, cover & art.
192. 871 All-New Wolverine #2 Marvel
1/16
  1st appearance of Gabby, Bellona & Zelda Kinney. Taskmaster cameo on last page.
193. 870 Deadpool’s Secret Secret Wars 2 Bachalo Variant Cover Marvel
8/15
  “Gwen Stacy” variant cover. Gwenpool cover. Predates Howard the Duck #1 (1/16)
194. 869 Monstress #1 Image
11/15
  Marjorie Liu story. Sana Takeda cover & art.
195. 862 Spawn #4 Image
9/92
  Image Comics #0 coupon included. Pin-up by Dave Sim.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand variant is confirmed to exist
196. 858 Batman: Sword of Azrael #1 D.C.
10/92
  1st appearance of Azrael (Jean-Paul Valley Jr). Wraparound gatefold cover.
197. 858 Amazing Spider-Man 800 JScottCampbell.com “Virgin” Ed Marvel
7/18
  Back cover reads “Third Printing.” “Death” of Flash Thompson.
198. 851 Wolverine: The End 1 Wizard World Texas Edition Marvel
1/04
  Paul Jenkins story. Claudio Castellini art. David Finch & Art Thibert cover.
199. 851 What If… #105 Marvel
2/98
  Origin & 1st appearance of Spider-Girl (May “Mayday” Parker). Normie Osborn becomes the new Green Goblin.
200. 843 Spawn #8 Image
2/93
  Billy Kincaid & Vindicator appearance. Spider-Man #1 (8/90) cover homage. Spawn poster by Frank Miller.
CGC variant confirmed Rare CGC-recognized newsstand variant is confirmed to exist
 « The Copper Age  

More Important Modern Age Comic Books:

Separate top 100 lists for each individual year thus far in the modern age:

Key Comic Books From 1992
Key Comic Books From 1993
Key Comic Books From 1994
Key Comic Books From 1995
Key Comic Books From 1996
Key Comic Books From 1997
Key Comic Books From 1998
Key Comic Books From 1999
Key Comic Books From 2000
Key Comic Books From 2001
Key Comic Books From 2002
Key Comic Books From 2003
Key Comic Books From 2004
Key Comic Books From 2005
Key Comic Books From 2006
Key Comic Books From 2007
Key Comic Books From 2008
Key Comic Books From 2009
Key Comic Books From 2010
Key Comic Books From 2011
Key Comic Books From 2012
Key Comic Books From 2013
Key Comic Books From 2014
Key Comic Books From 2015
Key Comic Books From 2016
Key Comic Books From 2017
Key Comic Books From 2018
Key Comic Books From 2019
Key Comic Books From 2020