A rare copy of the first comic book featuring Superman has sold for $317,200 in an Internet auction.
The winning bid for the 1938 edition of Action Comics No. 1 was submitted Friday evening by John Dolmayan, the drummer for the rock band System of a Down, according to managers at the auction site ComicConnect.com.
In addition to being a musician, Dolmayan is also a dealer of rare comic books. The auctioneers said he acquired the Superman comic on behalf of an unidentified client.
"I imagine it's someone from the entertainment world," said Vincent Zurzolo, chief operating officer at ComicConnect and its sister dealership, Metropolis Collectibles.
The price was one of the highest ever paid for a comic book, a likely testiment to the volume's rarity and its excellent condition, said the dealership's co-owner, Stephen Fishler. Only about 100 copies of Action Comics No. 1 are known to exist and they seldom come up for sale.
"Maybe in a booming economy, it would have done a hundred grand more, but in the his economy, I think the price is great," Fishler said.
The man who had previously owned the book purchased it in a secondhand store in the early 1950s when he was nine years old.
He paid 35 cents.
The book, which features Superman lifting a car on its cover, remained in the man's possession for the next six decades, despite occasional offers from collectors promising several thousand dollars.