Whiz Comics #4 & Sivana's Subversion of the U.S. Govt, Up for Auction

Whiz Comics #4 was published during a tense time in both American and world history, to put it mildly.  This May 1940 cover-dated issue hit American newsstands around March 27, 1940 according to Library of Congress copyright data, while the planet marching steadily towards World War 2 and the United States presidential election in full history.  The story here by Bill Parker with art by C.C. Beck makes Whiz Comics #4's Captain Marvel tale a fascinating reflection of this particular moment in history.  A tough to get and important issue of a historic comic book series, there's a Whiz Comics #4 (Fawcett Publications, 1940) CGC VG/FN 5.0 Cream to off-white pages available at the 2021 October 17-18 Sunday & Monday Comic Books Select Auction #122142 at Heritage Auctions.

Whiz Comics #4 (Fawcett Publications, 1940)
Whiz Comics #4 (Fawcett Publications, 1940)

Often thought of as a kinder, gentler sort of superhero saga, Golden Age Captain Marvel comics are not quite that — think of them as sophisticated stories shown through a child's (Billy Batson's) eyes instead.  For example, this issue lays out how mad scientist Sivana and his daughter Beautia would take over the United States not by brute force, but by subverting the presidential election.  The issue shows a comprehensive propaganda campaign of dropped leaflets, handbills, radio, newspaper, and film coverage which convinces the nation to vote for Beautia.  Once she's in, Sivana will be the true power behind the presidency and proceed to subvert the country's institutions from the inside out, and "If elected, Beatuia will rule the United States — but in name only. The real ruler will be Sivana, under whose oppressive dictatorship liberty, justice and happiness will vanish from America."

This issue of Whiz Comics is a tough get, with only 23 universal entries on the CGC Census. There's a very nice-looking mid-grade copy of Whiz Comics #4 (Fawcett Publications, 1940) CGC VG/FN 5.0 Cream to off-white pages available at the 2021 October 17-18 Sunday & Monday Comic Books Select Auction #122142 at Heritage Auctions.

Whiz Comics #4 (Fawcett Publications, 1940)
Whiz Comics #4 (Fawcett Publications, 1940)

Whiz Comics #4 (Fawcett Publications, 1940) CGC VG/FN 5.0 Cream to off-white pages. Gerber rates this issue a "7" ("scarce") in its Scarcity Index. Cover features a scantily clad woman, not a common sight on a Fawcett comic. Contents include a brief retelling of the origin of Captain Marvel. Cover and art by C. C. Beck. CGC notes, "Very minor amount of glue on cover." Overstreet 2021 VG 4.0 value = $810; FN 6.0 value = $1,215. CGC census 10/21: 2 in 5.0, 13 higher.

View the certification for CGC Certification ID 248112014 and purchase grader's notes if available.

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About Mark Seifert

Co-founder and Creative director of Bleeding Cool parent company Avatar Press. Bleeding Cool Managing Editor, tech and data wrangler. Machine Learning hobbyist. Vintage paper addict.
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