March 27, 2012
Is a check for $412 really worth $412? That’s a question that has comic book fans intrigued this week. The check in question is the one endorsed by Jerome Siegel and Joe Shuster when they signed over their rights for creating Superman, whose adventures are published by DC Comics. Now the auction site Comicconnect.com is putting the check up for sale. The auction began on Monday and ends on April 16. The 12 bids have already pushed the price to $25,500.
The check includes an accounting: $130 for the rights to Superman, $210 for stories in Detective Comics and two $36 payments for stories in More Fun and Adventure Comics. The back of the check includes a stamp from a United States District Court from 1939, when it was used as evidence by DC Comics in its successful copyright infringement lawsuit against Victor Fox, a publisher who unveiled Wonder Man, a champion created by Will Eisner. That wondrous hero, DC Comics said, was too similar to the Man of Steel.
Copyright 2012 Will Eisner: A Spirited Life by Bob Andelman