We try to be as honest, accurate and consistent as possible with the grading of the comics we offer. We want to maintain a position where noone is ever disappointed with a comic received from us.
All front cover & thumbnail images are actual scans of the physical items for sale - no stock photos are ever used. We've also added a brief description of the condition of every comic which we hope will highlight any non-obvious defects in the scans and give a better 'feel' of the comic as a whole. We'll always note if the cover or centrefold is detached at the staples, any writing, subscription creases, sellotape, any restoration, and usually a lot more besides.
We use the Overstreet Comic Book Grading Guide as a baseline combined with experience of how CGC grade. We've noted both the older grade plus the comparable newer decimal grade against each book. Summaries of grades can be found at the bottom of this page. If you are not familiar with the traditional grades notations, please bear in mind that 'Very Good', 'Good', and 'Fair' are not high end grades despite their names!
Overstreet states generally the highest grade permissible for certain defects, and we will only rarely go above these if the comic is otherwise in far superior shape than the listed grade.
Centrefold detached at one staple = VG+ (4.5)
Centrefold completely detached = G+ (2.5)
Cover detached at one staple = VG- (3.5)
Cover completely detached = G (2.0)
1" spine split = VG+ (4.5)
2" spine split = G (2.0)
Greater than 1/2" triangle missing from cover = FR/G (1.5)
Following from Overstreet & CGC, we tend to not treat production errors & distribution marks as serious as handling & age damage. This includes miscuts, miswraps, production creases, bound with a missing staple, distribution ink, store stamps etc. Although if these are large or unsightly we may still knock down the grade.
Due to the poor quality of paper and cutting/binding used in early 2000ADs and some other British comics we allow a little more leeway when these count against the condition of the comic. Bear in mind also that almost all creases on these comics are non-colour-breaking, so will generally grade a little higher than glossy comics with similar creases.
'Production creases' these are caused by rollers during production. They are generally horizontal cover creases that don't break colour.
Where we mention 'red ink bleedthrough', this is nothing to do with colour touch. We use it to describe the pink splotchy areas that some (usually Bronze Age) comics have on their covers where the red ink of the inside page has migrated onto and sometimes through the cover.
Grade Rankings & Descriptions:
GEM MINT (10.0).
NM/MINT (9.8). Any wear is virtually invisible.
NM+ (9.6). NEAR MINT+.
NM (9.4). NEAR MINT. Most off the shelf comics are in this as-new state.
NM- (9.2). NEAR MINT-
VF/NM (9.0). VERY FINE/NEAR MINT
VF+ (8.5). VERY FINE+
VF (8.0). VERY FINE. Only very minor flaws allowed, a very well looked after comic.
VF- (7.5). VERY FINE-
FN/VF (7.0). FINE/VERY FINE. Nicely presenting but a few minor issues visible.
FN+ (6.5). FINE+
FN (6.0). FINE. Generally above average and still looks in decent shape with several lesser flaws.
FN- (5.5). FINE-
VG/FN (5.0). VERY GOOD/FINE. Usually still a decent copy with several lesser or one major flaw.
VG+ (4.5). VERY GOOD+
VG (4.0). VERY GOOD. An average book with moderate wear & creasing and probably several larger flaws.
VG- (3.5). VERY GOOD-
G/VG (3.0). GOOD/VERY GOOD
G+ (2.5). GOOD+
G (2.0). GOOD. Probably looking a bit rough with some major issues, such as very heavy creasing, large tears, heavy water damage etc.
G- (1.8). GOOD-
FR/G (1.5). FAIR/GOOD
FR (1.0). FAIR. Tatty! May have pieces missing, but pages are complete and readable.
P (0.5). POOR. Only just hanging in there, may be falling apart, large pieces missing or worse!