Variant comic books are comics with different art work for their covers. Usually depicting the characters in a whole different style then what the book is drawn in. A lot of collectors seek out these issues. That’s where hunting can be worth your time and effort. Search online and see what books are going for at multiple shops.
Last week my local comic shop had all the Kick-Ass 3 #1 variant covers, but they wanted $20 dollars a piece for them. I told Topher that, and he then remembered he had seen some at his local comic shop on the new release shelf. He called the shop and had them put a couple variant books in his box at cover price. That is when having a box at a shop is ideal, easy to reserve and hold. I was lucky enough to find all 5 variants at another comic shop for cover price. So I paid less for all of them then I would have just buying one for $20. Even better Things From Another World has all the issues for 10% off cover price. TFAW.com
Why do the prices for variants vary so drastically? Well when comic shops get the shipment from the publishers the variant issues are the special “chase” issues. 1 in 10, 1 in 20, 1 in 50 etc. The more rare the variant is–the higher the price. It seems like a racket at times when some comic shops charge way more than others. Variant covers are a big business just for that reason, huge profit for the shops, and they sell themselves with comic book fans. Except do your homework and don’t just impulse buy. Follow the tips!
Comic book variants are not going away, Superman Unchained #1 this week had 9 different variants. The cool theme they did was each variant depicted Superman in a different era of his life, bronze age, silver age, etc. Superman Unchained also is coinciding with the 75th Anniversary of Superman.