This past weekend at New York Comic Con, Gerard Way and his former My Chemical Romance bandmate Ray Toro released a cassette tape with music entitled Into the Cave We Wander. Way, the current writer of DC Comics’ Doom Patrol and the head of the company’s Young Animal imprint, released the track during the Young Animal panel in order to promote the title he is co-writing for the line with Jon Rivera, Cave Carson Has a Cybernetic Eye. Designed as part of a “lo-fi” marketing campaign for the books, Way promised this cassette would be exclusive to attendees at the convention only. Of course, it could only stay that way for so long though, because last night saw the first completed Ebay listing for the cassette.
— The Beat On Scene (@ComicsBeatLive) October 7, 2016
At 5:26PM on Sunday, October 9th, a listing for the “Exclusive NY Comic Con 2016 Gerard Single – Way My Chemical Romance (Cassette)” went live. At 8:26 PM, just three hours later, the tape was sold for a whopping $125.00. For reference, there is only one song on the tape’s A side and an excerpt from an imaginary film entitled “Poggy’s Cavern” on the B side so this basically means someone paid over 100 dollars for a single piece of music. And they say piracy is killing the music industry.
There are currently three live auction listings for the cassette scheduled to end this week. At the time of this article’s posting the highest bid on any of those is $62.00, but who knows what lengths we might see people go to get their hands on this rarity that I still can’t figure out how to play…I regret throwing out those cassette players a decade ago.
Finally, it’s worth noting that Young Animal has seen a huge number of coveted promotional items appear in support of its books. Prior to the release of Into the Cave We Wander, DC Comics gave away a Shade the Changing Girl blacklight poster and Flex Mentallo “Hero of the Beach” towel to a small number of people at San Diego Comic Con. I was unable to find any completed auction listings for either of these pieces, likely given the diminutive print run for each of these items (about 50), but both received a great deal of buzz over the summer. This tape’s sale demonstrates there might be real market demand behind the hype for Young Animal products, so perhaps we’ll see DC take advantage of that in the year to come.