Stephenson's to host April 22 Superheroes, Comic Books, Sports Memorabilia & Posters Auction

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Stephenson's to host April 22 Superheroes, Comic Books, Sports Memorabilia & Posters Auction
The Jetsons ‘Service Station – Full Service’ animation art cel, signed by Bill Hanna and Joe Barbera, est. $300-$500.

SOUTHAMPTON, PA.- On Friday, April 22nd, superheroes and comic-character favorites will converge on Stephenson’s auction gallery in suburban Philadelphia for an exciting 302-lot sale of collectibles, memorabilia, comic books and posters. All forms of bidding will be available, including live via the Internet through LiveAuctioneers.

The fun begins with superhero comic books. There are dozens of group-lots containing titles such as Spider-Man, Batman, Star Wars, Spawn, Fantastic Four, X-Men, The Incredible Hulk, and so many others. Some of the group-lots consist of generous mixed offerings from a single publisher, e.g., DC Comics, Marvel, ICB, Image Comics, Vertigo, etc. Estimates are very reasonable, with excellent-quality books available at estimated prices to please every pocketbook.

Among the top comic book lots is a grouping of six Marvel Comics Silver Age titles published between 1966 and 1968. The earliest, Fantastic Four #61, features the first appearances of Maximus Boltagon, Aireo (later renamed Skybreaker), and the Alpha Primitives – a race of servants created by The Inhumans – and the third appearance of Black Bolt, or Blakagar Boltagon. Also noteworthy is Fantastic Four #62 with the first appearance of Blastaar the Living Bomb-Burst. The lot is expected to make $300-$500.

Collectible lithographs and cels are led by a 1995 3-D lithograph of Charles Fazzino’s (American, b. 1955-) The Jetsons Take Las Vegas. Super colorful and profusely illustrated, it includes whimsical images of George, Jane, Elroy and Judy, plus Rosie the Maid and family dog Astro. The characters are shown taking part in various Vegas activities, from golfing to visiting casinos and even winning a jackpot. The 25-by-16-inch lithograph, #130 of 200AE, is signed by the artist as well as legendary animators Bill Hanna (1910-2001) and Joseph Barbera (1911-2006). The pre-sale estimate is $1,000-$2,000.

Also signed by Hanna and Barbera, a Jetsons “Service Station – Full Service” animation art cel depicts the futuristic cartoon family in their bubble-topped spacecraft, getting their vehicle fueled and having their windshield wiped by robot employees. Numbered 274/300 and measuring 15½ by 12½ inches (sight), it is estimated at $300-$500.

A beautiful display for any collector’s wall, a 14-by-9½inch Batman and Robin limited-edition lithograph and pin set was acquired in 1999 from Warner Brothers Studios store gallery. The print is numbered 1061/1250 and is matted and framed together with seven enamel and brass Gotham icon pins. Each of the pins is individually numbered on its back with matching edition numbers. A Warner Brothers COA is attached on verso. The set is offered with a $300-$500 estimate.

For music fans, the sale includes many collectible options, including a handsomely matted and framed Bob Marley set that’s ready to display. It consists of a 1980 Bob Marley and the Wailers Uprising LP with its signed sleeve. Estimate: $500-$1,000.

Magazines from the hippie/flower power era are not often seen in quantity at auction, but Stephenson’s catalog is filled with surprises of this type. Lot 105 consists of 54 issues of High Times magazine cover-dated from its first year of publication, 1974, through 1982. Originally published as a joke, the maverick monthly grew to become a popular platform for counterculture subjects, eventually achieving circulation numbers that rivaled those of Rolling Stone and National Lampoon. The High Times collection to be auctioned is expected to make $400-$600.

In addition to “traditionally” published music magazines, the last quarter of the 20th century also spawned a new form of youth journalism: the fanzine. The auction lists nine group-lots of fan-published magazines generally devoted to garage bands, psychedelic, surf and punk rock; the Grateful Dead or other underground bands and genres. Some of the magazines come with sample records. One particular lot consists of 11 issues of the fanzine titled 99th Floor, each including a peacock-blue flexi-single with songs by The Brood on the A side and Boys From Nowhere on the B side. The lot estimate is $100-$200. Another lot consists of 20 international fanzines issued from 1982 to 1988. Among the nations represented are Australia, France, Holland, New Zealand, Germany, Spain, Canada and Italy. Lot estimate: $100-$200

There are 32 lots of boxing ephemera – primarily boxing programs but also posters, signed lithographs and other memorabilia. A 14-piece group-lot containing championship boxing programs from bouts that took place between 1992 and 1995, featuring Thomas “Hit Man” Hearns, Oscar De La Hoya, George Foreman and many other legends of the ring is estimated at $300-$400.

Vintage travel posters are an affordable way to add high-quality art to the home or office. Stephenson’s April 22 auction features many artful 1950s/’60s selections from historical but now-defunct airlines such as Pan Am, TWA, and BOAC. Destinations advertised on the posters range Rome to Argentina, Puerto Rico to Peru. A 1960 TWA poster promoting Arizona is an original printing with art by David Klein and measures 40 by 24 inches. Estimate: $300-$500

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