Why are Western Comics Worth So Little?
Updated: May 19
Western movies were all the rage in the 1950s and 1960s. Children would turn on their TVs and radios and tune into the latest episode of the Lone Ranger or Gene Autry. Cowboys were idolized, by little boys and girls. So when you look at this, it is no wonder that comic books featuring everyone's favorite horse-riding heroes became popular in this period. Fast forward to the current day, and we see comics from that time have such little value, compared to superhero comic books. What happened? Why are western comics worth so little?
Well, to answer this, we need to look at the western genre as a whole first. In the 1960s John Wayne made many classic western movies such a True Grit. These movies would captivate audiences young and old. Westerns were thriving. However, in the late 1960s to 1970s, there started to be a shift in pop culture. Westerns were no longer popular. John Wayne was no longer the coolest guy in town. People wanted a different kind of movie that reflected the times better.
This caused westerns to slowly start dying a hard death. The genre of comics that shared the same name would not be free from this death. There would be some comics in the 1970s to try and keep the genre alive such as Night Rider (the original Ghost Rider), and Jonah Hex. Jonah Hex kept up with sales, but would eventually be canceled towards the end of the 1980s. The character would then get a few more titles in the next 25 years, but would never have the same appeal.
Now, this might still not answer the question as to why western comics aren't valuable. However, the simple answer to that question is that the people who collected westerns in the 1950s and 1960s moved on from collecting and are older (or have passed on). The genre just didn't catch on with the younger generations. An example of this is the Lone Ranger movie that was released in 2013. The movie did poorly because the current generation has little interest in cowboys or the genre. Many called the movie dated and silly compared to other new releases.
Will westerns ever make a return? It's very doubtful. Will your western comic books ever be valuable? It's even more doubtful. There just isn't enough to make people interested in the genre. Westerns can reinvent themselves and come back (Django Unchained almost did it), but no one knows for sure. If you want to sell your western comics and feel like you might have a valuable comic book, then be sure to call or email us with any inquires or if you need advice. There are a few valuable westerns that remain, but there are many more that have little to no value.