The best grouping of Frank Miller Dark Knight artwork ever to be offered in a single auction, led by one of the most evocative images from the famed series, The Dark Knight Returns #2 Batman and Robin Splash Page 36 Original Art (DC, 1986), estimated at $75,000+, depicting a seriously wounded and determined Bruce Wayne in a fatherly embrace with his protégé Robin (Carrie Kelly), will cross the block on May 17 in Dallas as the highlight lot in Heritage Auctions’ Comics and Original Comic Art Signature® Auction.
“This drawing encompasses everything that the relationship between Batman and Robin represented as Miller re-imagined and re-energized the franchise,” said Todd Hignite, Vice President of Heritage Auctions. “This is the story many fans consider the greatest Batman story ever told and this is one of the greatest, most evocative moments in the entire story. It’s a truly transcendent image from one of the great comic sagas of all time.”
The Dark Knight splash page is complemented in the auction by two more Miller interior masterpieces – The Dark Knight #3 Clark Kent/Bruce Wayne Page 14 Original Art (DC, 1986), estimated at $40,000+, and The Dark Knight Returns #2 Batman and Robin Ride the Batcycle Page 38 Original Art (DC, 1986), estimated at $30,000+. The latter is a study in contrast between DC’s twin icons, Superman and Batman, in their secret identities as Clark Kent and Bruce Wayne, while the former stars Batman, Robin, Commissioner Gordon and an appearance of the Batcycle.
A truly high-grade copy of Amazing Fantasy #15, the first appearance of Spider-Man, and what is easily the most sought after Silver Age comic book of all, is the top comic book in the auction, and is expected to bring more than $85,000. The event also marks the 50th Signature® Auction assembled and staged by Heritage’s Comics and Original Comic Art Department.
“What better way to celebrate our 50th auction than with a remarkable copy of one of the top comic books on the planet?” said Barry Sandoval, Director of Operations for the Comics Department at Heritage Auctions. “Advanced collectors are all over this copy, and rightly so. Two years ago a copy in the same grade brought more than $80,000 when it came up for auction. Since then, values have continued to soar. This could certainly go several ticks higher.”
From Marvel’s Bronze Age comes three pivotal pages of original art – 27, 30 and 31 – in Dave Cockrum’s masterpiece X-Men #100 “Death of Jean Grey,” (Marvel, 1976), one of the most memorable X-Men sagas of all, while from the Modern Age of Marvel comes Todd McFarlane’s Amazing Spider-Man #324 Sabretooth Cover Original Art (Marvel, 1989), “The Assassin Revealed: Sabretooth.” Both pieces are estimated at $75,000+.
Other items up for auction include Dave Gibbons Watchmen #6 “Rorschach Inkblot” Cover Original Art, George Perez Crisis on Infinite Earths #12 Cover Original Art, John Romita Sr. The Amazing Spider-Man #85 Kingpin and the Schemer Cover Original Art, Daredevil #1 (Marvel, 1964) CGC NM+ 9.6 Off-white to white pages, and Batman #3 (DC, 1940) CGC NM- 9.2 White pages.