Comic Book Terms
Comic Book Terms
Mark Zaid (Owner of Esquire Comics) gives expert video advice on: What are the different types of comic book covers? and more...
What is a 'complete run'?
A complete run just refers to if there are 500 issues in a run of, say, Spiderman, and if you have a complete run of comic books as a collector. A complete run is if you have 1 through 500.
What is a 'crossover' in a comic book?
A crossover in a comic book would be where a character from one book appears in the title of another book, so Superman appears in an issue of Batman.
What is a 'cameo' appearance in a comic book?
A cameo appearance in a comic book would be just a very quick appearance of a character in a particular comic book. Maybe they're on a page or in an actual segment sort of slot of the comic book, and they're there just their one day and gone the next.
What is a 'debut' or 'first' appearance in a comic book?
A debut and first appearance in a comic book would be just that. This is the first appearance of that particular character in that comic book, and very often those books are worth more than subsequent issues, depending on what happens because of the fact it is a debut of that character.
What is a 'one shot' comic book?
A one shot comic book also is exactly what it says. One shot means it only appeared in that one issue. Sometimes it was done deliberately for that fact. It was a special issue, such as with the death of President Kennedy there was a memorial issue, a one shot comic about President Kennedys life. Other times, it was only one shot because the publisher might have gone out of business or perhaps they were threatened with a lawsuit for having infringed on the copyright of another character.
What is the 'indicia' of a comic book?
The indicia information of a comic book is just what it would be in reference to a book term as well. It provides the copyright information, the issue number, and the date of the comic book. The information is usually found within the interior of the comic book on or near the first or second page.
What is a comic book's 'key issue'?
A key Issue of a comic book refers to something extraordinary or unique that has happened in that particular comic book. For example it could be, in Action Comic Books, when Supergirl makes her first appearance 15 or so years after Superman and Action Comics has actually begun.
What is a 'variant cover' of a comic book?
Variant covers of comic books became popular more in the modern day, in the 1980s, although there are examples that go back before that and these would be multiple covers that would be made for the same issue. Either there were retailed issues made or there were even different issues as far as the cover made for different parts of the country. And that would spur sales perhaps, and it would create for the publishers an opportunity for collectors to buy each of the issues from a collecting stand point. Or there just could be different reasons they had to change some of the covers of the comic books.
What is a 'chromium cover' of a comic book?
A chromium cover of a comic book also came about more in the late 1980s, early 1990s. These were special foil-like covers that were primarily designed to spur sales and interest in that particular book. Spiderman and Marvel Comics used it quite well to their advantage for sales purposes.
What are the different types of comic book covers?
There are now different types of comic book covers that primarily came about in the eighties and nineteen-nineties as modern technology developed and printing became less expensive. There have always been different types of comic book covers, depending on the paper quality. But now, in modern day, you have different comic book covers, like foils, and different types of foil. There are holograms, with an actual presentation of a hologram on the cover, photo covers, with a real photo of somebody on the comic cover, rather than an artistic representation of that particular cover. These are marketing techniques by the publishers, in order to generate additional interest in the sales of comic books.