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Guide: $1,000 NM
Est. qty: 300
Right now on eBay

Graphic Fantasy #1
First appearance of Savage Dragon

Self-published (as Ajax Comics Group), June 1982.

3 Star Rating: Rare 101-1,000 Rare

This self-published work by Erik Larsen, Al Harris and Kevin Keyes, contains the first published appearance of Larsen's Savage Dragon character (as The Dragon) in a story called "Revenge" (The Dragon also appears on the cover).

Note that the "Savage" in Savage Dragon was added later after a Larsen received a Cease and Desist order from Dragon Magazine (Dungeons & Dragons role-playing game mag) unbelievably over the use of the name Dragon (seems they were playing fantasy litigation with their grumpy lawyer class orcs and Larsen rolled snake eyes on his pair of d10's).

Graphic Fantasy #1 1982 Savage Dragon

It is worth pointing out that the first appearance of Savage Dragon was previously noted as Megaton #3 by many dealers and also by CGC on their labels: CGC subsequently corrected the labels on Megaton #3, which now simply reads "Dragon appearance".

In 1988, Image published Savage Dragon Archives #1 and the back cover is a reproduction of the cover for Graphic Fantasy #1 with the text "The original cover of the Dragon's first appearance in 1982":

Savage Dragon Archives #1 1998

CGC note Graphic Fantasy #1 with "1st appearance of The Dragon" on their labels and, in July 2016, the CGC census had 5 gradings recorded, one single 9.6 and four at 9.2. Each CGC graded comic is under the Qualified grade due to the comics all being signed and numbered on the back.

Graphic Fantasy #1 1982 Savage Dragon back cover

The numbering is curious as many are numbered out of 200 but then there are others such as #144 (above) and also #250 (sold via Heritage in February 2016) that seem to be numbered out of 300. At a guess 200 were initially printed and then a further 100 printed but this is a little mystery for the moment.

In May 2016, one if the CGC 9.2 copies of #1, along with #2 (CGC 9.4, also qualified) and #3 (CGC 9.2 on a Universal label) sold as one lot for $1,511; separately (and in the same month) a lower grade raw copy of #1 sold for $800.