Dubai to showcase $1m worth of rare comics

US-based dealer to show vintage first editions featuring Superman, Batman and Spiderman

One of the world’s largest vintage comic book dealers will exhibit over $1m worth of rare comics and artwork, including first editions featuring the likes of Superman, Batman and Spiderman, at this year’s Middle East Film & Comic Con, which takes place in Dubai on April 3-5.

Vincent Zuzolo, co-owner of online vintage comic auction house Metropolis Collectibles, is regarded as one of the genre’s top experts and will exhibit his rare collection for the first time in the Middle East.

Some of the items set to go on show will include the first Superman comic, Action Comics 1, the first Batman comic, Detective Comics 27, the first Spider-Man, Amazing Fantasy 15, and thousands more of great value.

“Superheroes are universal,” said Zurzolo. “Everybody loves Superman, Batman and Spider-Man.”

This year’s Middle East Film & Comic Con will also move to a bigger venue this year —the Dubai World Trade Centre — to accommodate the growing fanbase in the region, which grew by 39 percent last year.

More investors worldwide are embracing the collectibles market as an alternative to the volatility and poor returns of traditional investment arenas. Zurzolo’s firm holds the record for the three most expensive comics ever sold: $1.1m, $1.5m and $2.1m.

“Comic books are a tangible asset that collectors can get passionate about. They can see the appreciation,” said Zurzolo. “And it’s fun."

Zurzolo’s firm is actively helping new clients in the Middle East build their collections and investment portfolios. They partnered with local collector Marwan Al Khaja to represent Metropolis Collectibles in the region. Al Khaja, who lives in Dubai, will also be in attendance at the April event.

The Dubai Culture and Arts Authority designated Middle East Film & Comic Con a key event of the Dubai Art Season, which runs from mid-March to mid-April and is designed to showcase the area’s thriving creative community.

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