Yup, it’s as problematic as all hell, but the full original artwork for the first comic book story that featured The Mandarin is at auction from Heritage Auctions. The full thirteen page Iron Man story by Stan Lee and Don Heck that introduced the “yellow peril” Fu Manchu-like character to Marvel Comics back in Tales Of Suspense #50, the series that featured Iron Man stories. The character became the leading Iron Man villain over the years and went through some radical and necessary transformations, and inspired both the Ben Kingsley character in Iron Man 2 and Return Of The King, and Tony Leung in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings. At time of writing, it has bids of $29,000 and will go under the hammer between November the 18th and 21st.
Don Heck Tales of Suspense #50 Complete 13-Page Story “The Hands of the Mandarin!” Original Art (Marvel, 1964). The first appearance of the evil scientist known as The Mandarin, one of Iron Man’s first and most dangerous foes. After battling the Mandarin and his deadly rings, Iron Man barely escapes his nefarious castle. The two opposing forces would continue to battle for many years, with the Mandarin even appearing in two different incarnations of Marvel Studios feature films: in Iron Man 3 (actually an imposter, played by Ben Kingsley), and in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (as the “real” Mandarin and father of Shang-Chi, played by Tony Leung). Created at twice-up scale in ink over graphite on Bristol board, the image areas measure 12.5″ x 18.5″. Slight toning, staple holes in the top margin of the opening page, cut-out and paste-up in the first panel of Page 13 with a missing patch paste-up on the back, text correction paste-ups with one missing from the first panel of Page 3, tape and abrasions in the bottom margin of Pages 5 and 10, blue pencil shading in Panel 4 of Page 11, marginal notes, blue pencil editorial marks and whiteout corrections, with light staining, smudging, and handling wear. Overall, in Very Good condition.