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Exploring Black Hammer as Speculation Investment

Exploring Black Hammer as Speculation Investment 1024 585 Craig Coffman

Exploring Black Hammer as Speculation Investment

Drop the (Black) Hammer

Jeff Lemire (Sweet Tooth / Trillium) is back again with his tender storytelling stuffed full of interesting characters. Which is pretty much his signature. What makes this fun and heart-warming tales of super heroes different is the human element. Even if they are not human. The first twelve issues wrap mystery around the vibrant universe Black Hammer is hoping to deliver.

Seemingly sourced from the Golden Age comic worlds of super-heroes, science fiction and a light dose of horror, one quickly gets immersed in a space that feels equally foreign and familiar. If you are a fan of modern story telling and feeling of hand-crafted art, this might be the best series you have never read.

Black Hammer Universe

Black Hammer is an American ongoing comic series created by writer Jeff Lemire and artist Dean Ormston, published by Dark Horse Comics. The most striking thing to me is how believable it all seems.

If you have ever read a Golden Age comic, sometimes the writing is more jarring and flattens the illusion of how we perceive the era. Lemire has managed to capture the ideal of that age with modern literary devices and breathe life and, most importantly, connection to the characters.

All About the Story

At first blush leads one to think this story telling and universe is similar to Hellboy (another awesome comic). There is no need to stick to a specific narrative since the universe is expansive. Lemire can tell a story from one angle and then break out mini-stories with specific characters. Or drop a one-off about Cthu-Louise (one of his characters) without feeling like it is just a money grab. The expansions add dimension and depth to characters and places. It is invited and not off-putting.

Characters inhabiting this world are an amalgamation of Golden Age characters with modern twists and counterparts. The re-imagining is exciting and gives touch points while trying to take everything in. There is much to take in. One is left with an immediate sense of connection to the character despite having no previous exposure. Lovely literary magick there.

The Long Boxers - Black Hammer 1 San Diego Comic Con

In my opinion, this is the book to buy. It is the San Diego Comic Con cover and very limited. This released at the same time as Black Hammer #1, so the scarcity of this makes it appealing.

NOTE: Thus far, each issue has two covers in the A/B format as opposed to ratio variants. It seems like cover A are the easier to find and potentially what people like, but the cover Bs might have a bit more value due to potential scarcity. This is just a guess, though, as I do not have hard numbers.

Buying Land in the Black Hammer Universe

Now for the motivation to buy in to the Black Hammer world. In my opinion, first and foremost because it is a fantastic place to read about and sink into. The nuance and layers to the story are beautiful and the art is a strong marriage. For me, I buy what I like and keep reading what I love. I keep reading this.

Lemire’s world is full and robust. This leads to a long-tail approach. Not having to stick to a single story line or group of characters gives the writer a reprieve and keeps the creative juices potent. Black Hammer is rife with characters and there have already been three spin offs.

Black Hammer and Friends

Spin offs give fans a chance to dig a little deeper into a specific character, and gives the creative team length to explore avenues they get interested in. It also opens up more avenues to pull in a wider readership. If Black Hammer does not strike someone’s fancy, but a fan of Starman stumbles across Doctor Star (a love letter homage to Robinson’s Starman and one of my top five comics) they can back into the world. More feeder streams widen the river, and this one is getting ready to flow like the Mississippi.

Black Hammer on the Screen

Like it or hate it, other media appearances strengthen the spec and potential anger term value of a property. Particularly on a screen. Black Hammer has already been brought in on an option to appear on the telly as well as the big screen. The idea is they want to develop the universe, which is exciting since there is more than a single character or storyline to the property. If used well, this very easily could slip into a robust franchise.

Running Out of Paper

Finally, this series is a low print run title. Dark Horse does not typically do massive print runs, and I believe the first print clocks in under 30K. The paper used on the covers is not the highest of quality, and many of them are dinged and bent on the Wednesday Wall. If books straight out of the Diamond boxes are not top quality, to me that means Black Hammer books are hard to find in high grade. That is music to my ears!

The Long Boxers - Sherlock Frankenstein 1
The Long Boxers - Doctor Star 1
The Long Boxers - Black Hammer Cthu-Louise
The Long Boxers - Black Hammer 45

Putting the Black Hammer in Your Comic Toolbox

This is a fun world with a strong cult following. Finding back issues is really tough and even harder to find in high grade. Perhaps the Black Hammer trade paper back or a fancy and gorgeous hardcover Library Edition to get into the series. Beyond a great story and beautiful art, you are getting a robust world with a bright future across media. Fold that in to a low print run series on less than stellar paper and you seem to have a hot property in high grades. For me it is a perfect storm of reasons to be excited about reading and investing in Black Hammer.

This is current as of 2/22/2019

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