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Saturday, November 26, 2011

Comics Economics

Comic books allotted me an early opportunity to track inflation, as I observed prices increase gradually during the 1970s and 1980s.

Here's an overview of how cover prices increased during the original run of the Defenders series.

The first 12 issues of the Defenders originally sold for 20¢ apiece.

Prices rose to 25¢ on #13 (May 1974). A yellow burst saying STILL ONLY 25¢ appeared on the covers of #35 and #37.

Notice how 25¢ then appeared inside a circle on the cover of #38.

Prices increased to 30¢ with #39 (Sept. 1976), and then to 35¢ with #53 (Nov. 1977).

Issues #64 to #70 included a white burst saying STILL ONLY 35¢. Note how 35¢ appeared in red on #68, instead of the usual black type.

Prices for standard-size issues continued to rise by a nickel or dime every one to three years.

40¢ beginning with #71 (May 1979).

50¢ beginning with #87 (Sept. 1980).

60¢ beginning with #103 (Jan. 1982).

65¢ beginning with #142 (April 1985).

Each issue of Giant-Size Defenders sold for 50¢ on stands in the 1970s. Afterward, double-sized issues of the Defenders increased incrementally in price by a quarter.

75¢ for double-sized #100 (Oct. 1981).

$1.00 for double-sized #125 (Nov. 1983).

$1.25 for double-sized New Defenders #150 (Dec. 1985) and again for #152 (Feb. 1986), when the series ended.

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