Nicolas Cage’s Stolen ‘Action Comics’ #1 Recovered Under Super Sketchy Circumstances
A suspicious series of events has resulted in the discovery of a copy of Action Comics #1 – the hugely valuable first appearance of Superman — that was stolen from movie star Nicolas Cage more than ten years ago. Released with a cover price of ten cents in 1938, the very rare Action Comics #1 is worth over $1.5 million.Presently sitting in a Los Angeles Police Department evidence room, Cage’s copy of Action Comics #1 was stolen from his home in 2000. The Ventura County Star reports that the comic book was allegedly discovered last month in a storage locker in Los Angeles’ San Fernando Valley, just a short drive north of the city’s major metropolitan area. As the story goes, a man known only as “Sylvester” found the copy of Action Comics #1 in the contents of a storage locker he purchased. Sylvester made inquiries with Dan Dotson of American Auctioneers in Riverside, California, about 60 miles east of L.A. Dotson, who appears regularly on A&E’s Storage Wars, then contacted Mark Balelo, a collectibles expert who owns a merchandise liquidation company in Simi Valley, CA, about 40 miles outside downtown Los Angeles. Balelo then got in touch with New York-based rare comic book dealer Stephen Fisher of ComicConnect.com, who in fact sold Nicolas Cage the missing copy of Action Comics #1 more than a decade earlier. Fisher flew to California and identified the copy of Action Comics #1 as the very same item purchased from him by Nicolas Cage. The police agreed with Fisher’s conclusion, and the comic book was taken into evidence.
The whole truth is uncertain, as Sylvester, the man who claims to have purchased the contents of the locker, does not wish to be identified and, according to The Los Angeles Times, his story is still being investigated by police detectives. Asked by The Ventura County Star whether Sylvester is a suspect in the Cage robbery, Detective Donald Hrycyk of the LAPD’s two-person Art Theft Detail remarked, “I don’t know enough about it yet. I don’t want to prejudge anybody. It’s just too bad that Balelo with his big mouth thought it was necessary to contact the media.”
Speaking to The Los Angeles Times, Hrycyk indicated that Sylvester claims he does not know the exact storage locker from which he retrieved the valuable comic book, which is obviously very dubious.
For his part, Nicolas Cage is delighted that his beloved collectible has been found. “It is divine providence that the comic was found and I am hopeful that the heirloom will be returned to my family,” the actor said in a statement.
Indeed, the return of Action Comics #1 to Nicolas Cage could very well be a consequence of supernatural intervention; perhaps a karmic consequence of our brutal mockery of him last year, when behind-the-scenes photos revealed the dreadful direction Cage and filmmaker Tim Burton intended to take Superman in an aborted film project.
Sadly, Cage is still missing copies of Detective Comics #1 and Detective Comics #27, the latter being the first appearance of Batman.