Briefs & Boxers! 05/26/10

o “I’ve Never Sent a Prose Reader to Amazon Because Amazon Doesn’t Leer; I’d Like to Stop Doing It in Comics”

watchmen 197x300 Briefs & Boxers! 05/26/10Comics reporter Tom Spurgeon poses three rarely discussed questions on comics as a culture and industry. The questions concern the moral aspects of archival reprints, the general and specific unfriendliness of comics specialty stores to women and the meaning and purpose of superhero comics as a genre.

The third point is one I’ve been thinking and writing about a lot, lately. Why do we need superhero comics? What and how do they mean, and what do they bring to the table culturally? Did the genre reach a dead end decades ago? These are questions that Steve Gerber and Mary Skrenes were raising more than 30 years ago with the early, aborted, first-ever superhero comics novel Omega the Unknown.

To this day, few creators have acknowledged Gerber and Skrenes’s questions, and if you’re looking for works that try to formulate answers, you end up with no more than a handful. Mostly, what you get now are people who call superheroes “modern myths” and regard Watchmen and Batman: The Dark Knight Returns as important turning points for the genre, neither of which is true in the sense that folks tend to mean it.

Related: Critic Sean T. Collins asks why it has to be all about superheroes, all the time.

D’oh.

o “Be Amazing or Get Off the Racks”

Critic Douglas Wolk has “Eight Questions for Comics Creators.”

They’re good questions, and they cut to one of the current core problems of the form: If you want more recognition, at this stage, then better comics would be a good starting point.

In terms of mechanical craft, people do a pretty good job these days. What’s largely missing is a pervading sense of story: Is there a fully realized story? Does it strive for something beyond the successful execution of a default formula? How, precisely, is every single aspect of the comic serving that story?

There’s still a lot of random stuff, as well as a lot of material that gets by on surface qualities—material that’s praised as being great for managing not to violate any of the basic tenets of plotting or page-to-page storytelling too harshly, or for being faintly memorable in any way at all.

As long as that’s the case, bluntly, comics—at best—don’t deserve to be as established as prose or film. Wolk’s questions are a pretty good checklist for creators who have the earnest ambition to get there.

o “Any Writer Coming on to Batman Should at Least Attempt to Do Their Own Definitive Version”

Noel Murray of The A.V. Club talks to Grant Morrison about his writing and reading habits, his take on company-owned characters and so on.

The above quote sticks out to me because creators working on corporately owned comics properties tend to be motivated by some weird mixture of nostalgia, reverence and the desire to keep everything inoffensive and consistent. Now, I’m sure that’s how Marvel and DC prefer things, of course. Still, it seems like a deeply wrongheaded and short-sighted approach for everyone involved.

For one thing, this leads to a whole bunch of mediocre, interchangeable comics that can hope to be mildly entertaining on the best of days. More to the point, it robs creators of the opportunity to create and to express themselves and to turn their unique voice into a brand of its own; and it robs the publishers of potentially viable new approaches to keep familiar properties alive and kicking.

No, not every Batman story can be personal and meaningful and groundbreaking. But this shouldn’t stop a lot of people from trying.

In the direct-market environment, this kind of ambition is frequently met with resistance or outright hostility, and that’s easily my least favorite part of reading these kinds of comics.

o “The Most Anticipated New Series of the Year Starts Here”

Guardians of the Globe, a six-part Invincible spinoff co-written by Robert Kirkman, gets the top-billing in the advertisements for Image Comics releases shipping in August 2010. It has people in costumes fighting each other.

That’s not the “most anticipated new series of the year,” though. That honor goes to Morning Glories, a comic also touted as “Runaways meets Lost,” which probably means The Faculty with superheroes, or something like that.

Now, let’s be honest. Is Morning Glories the most anticipated new series of the year? Probably not. Is claiming so in any way funny, imaginative or otherwise interesting? Nope. Do unenthusiastically hyperbolic advertising messages that dutifully acknowledge their own futility suggest a lot of confidence in whatever it is that they happen to be advertising, or increase its allure? Negative.

So, generally, perhaps comics publishers would be better served by not having their advertisement copy be the document of some kind of weird, passive-aggressive self-deprecation, but instead use it to say something interesting and genuinely confident that appeals to the audience’s curiosity, rather than their sense of pity.

Also coming from Image in August: Murderland, a new series drawn by David Hahn—I don’t understand what the copy tells me about its premise, but evidently it’s important that it’s set in a universe of its own; Nancy in Hell, a miniseries about—if the preview pages are any indication—a woman and her crotch going to hell; Seedless, a book-length comic that sounds and looks like the Care Bears on Acid; and Sullivan’s Sluggers, a 176-pager about a baseball team other than the Chicago Cubs fighting a curse that may or may not involve a goat. If you like high-end art books, there will be ones by Dan Brereton and Frank Cho.

o “Please Vote Once Only Per Person”

“Briefs & Boxers!” endorses Phonogram: The Singles Club and Chew in this year’s Eagle Awards.

o “Too Bad X-Plam Never Read the Next Edition”

COMIC LEGEND: Superman and Lois Lane are sociopathic douchebags.

STATUS: True.

Via Brian Cronin comes this truly awful story from the bowels of history: Superman #136, 1960, whose idea of gender relations and human behavior is almost as spine-chilling as some more recent DC material.
xplam Briefs & Boxers! 05/26/10

The same article also has a nice bit about artists Frank Miller and Joe Rubinstein’s process on the first Wolverine miniseries.

o “Dr. Fate Is Floating in the Air at a Little Girl’s Funeral”

Speaking of more recent DC material, The Factual Opinion has an appropriately extensive conversation pondering many of the very serious, moving and emotionally authentic situations found therein.

o “The Duty That Gets You Through The Marvels Project, or Through a Museum, Is the Kind That Makes Your Feet Hurt”

Tom Crippen reviews, well, The Marvels Project, by Ed Brubaker and Steve Epting.

o “This Must Be What the X-Books Look Like to Normal People”

Paul O’Brien reviews a whole bunch of high-profile pop comics, among them Astonishing X-Men, Atlas, Avengers, Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne, Birds of Prey, Justice League: Generation Lost and Zatanna.

o “‘1000 Years in the Future’ Tends to Look a Lot Like Tokyo 20 Years from the Date of Publication”

Douglas Wolk, Graeme McMillan and crew talk Brian Michael Bendis and John Romita Jr.’s Avengers and Paul Levitz and Yildiray Cinar’s The Legion of Super-Heroes at Techland, your new #1 place for pop comics criticism and discussion.

o “It’s Spider-Man! And He’s Fighting — the Human Top!”

spidey1 197x300 Briefs & Boxers! 05/26/10The lead piece by Karl Kesel and Paulo Siqueira will probably be all right, but the highlight of this week’s Amazing Spider-Man Annual #37 (cover art by the miraculous Marcos Martin) is the second story, a new “Untold Tale of Spider-Man” by Kurt Busiek and Pat Olliffe.

Back in the mid-1990s, while Spider-Man spent most of his time unsure of himself, his morals and pretty much everything else that made the character appealing, Busiek, Olliffe and friends produced 25 issues of a series called Untold Tales of Spider-Man, plus various annuals and specials.

Set during the Stan Lee/Steve Ditko period, Untold Tales goes for the spirit of early Spider-Man, rather than its surface trappings. It’s a bouncing, mostly light-hearted and sometimes tragic adventure book with a host of new characters that manage not to pale in comparison with the Lee/Ditko creations, and it feels a lot less nostalgic than a lot of more recent Spider-Man comics.

I usually tend to frown when the band gets back together, but I gladly make an exception in this case.

 Briefs & Boxers! 05/26/10

Marc-Oliver Frisch writes about comics at his weblog and at Comicgate. You can also follow him on Twitter.

Comments

  1. “Why superheroes, all the time?”

    Followed by 9 stories about superheroes.

    Heh.

  2. I’ll second that “heh”.

  3. “To this day, few creators have acknowledged Gerber and Skrenes’s questions, and if you’re looking for works that try to formulate answers, you end up with no more than a handful.”

    Actually, post-1986 superhero comics have scarcely ever stopped asking these questions; they just don’t necessarily end up giving the answers that certain fans want to hear.

    Now let’s see what Spurgeon claims to be unanswered questions…

  4. Eh.

    Maybe one out of three.

  5. Ryan:

    “Followed by 9 stories about superheroes.”

    Seven and a half, you calumnious scoundrel!

    (And I did go d’oh for a reason.)

  6. Some comics have tried to answer those questions, others have just turned out to be Prophet. While I agree a lot of creators have attempted to answer these questions, I do kind of feel like we haven’t seen a lot of creators actually try to find a different answer.

    Most of the stories turn into a critique on the ultimate inability of the superheroes to actually change/save the world, a la Watchmen, often resulting in a woman being stuffed into a fridge.

    Then you have the stories where the heroes find a way to rationalize their behavior in order to justify their actions. Biggest guffaw along these lines is the death of Cap Am. The supposedly best person in the world, the most noble, the most selfless, dies, and none of the other characters in that shared world really change. They remain what they are and who they are doesn’t come into play. The rationalization of each of these characters, of what they are and how that fits into society, supersedes any consideration of them as people. It was a unique take in the Dark Night, I don’t buy it so much with Green Lantern.

  7. I agree with the idea of when going on to a superhero title try to make it your own.

    It was our approach on POWERGIRL for the past year.

    I agree, without this approach, its just a lot of more of the same.

    Jimmy

  8. The only people still reading superhero comics anymore are 30-40 year old adults. Maybe by constantly killing their characters DC is trying to tell them something…

  9. Seems more like cognitive dissonance rather than a subliminal message that DC’s trying to send these days.

  10. “Most of the stories turn into a critique on the ultimate inability of the superheroes to actually change/save the world, a la Watchmen, often resulting in a woman being stuffed into a fridge.”

    I would agree with that. There are a lot of mediocre answers, such as Meltzer’s IDENTITY CRISIS, which are designed just to tweak the static situation a little w/o substantially changing anything. Compared to that, the earlier “nothing ever changes, Superman’s always 30something” is much more honest about being an unchanging literary construct.

    However, though I wasn’t a huge fan of FINAL CRISIS (which Spurgeon mentions), it does strike me that it had a theme that played with the recursiveness of modern superhero comics which, like it or not, is a narrative element that’s not going away any time soon. That would be the sort of answer that would be opposed to whatever superhero critique someone here found in the Gerber-Skrenes OMEGA, whatever that critique was. The citation of some quotes or an issue number would’ve helped firm up what said critique was all about, and then maybe we could decide from that whether Morrison was more right than Gerber or vice versa.

  11. Bill:

    “Most of the stories turn into a critique on the ultimate inability of the superheroes to actually change/save the world, a la Watchmen, often resulting in a woman being stuffed into a fridge.”

    Yeah, but those don’t count — they’re just reiterations of what OMEGA said 30 years back, and few of them (like WATCHMEN) were more successful than OMEGA, in creative terms.

    To quote Wolk on the subject, “SEVEN SOLDIERS is the only [superhero comics work] so far that suggests what the concept might BECOME, instead of pointing it toward some kind of conceptual terminus and flooring the gas pedal.”

    I’m not sure I agree with Wolk on SEVEN SOLDIERS (I’d argue ALL STAR SUPERMAN and FINAL CRISIS are more significant, but those didn’t fully exist yet when he wrote that), and I certainly don’t agree with him that it’s the only one, but that said, he’s got a point.

    Most superhero comics that question the genre at all do so to cheerfully steer it off the cliff and get some explosions out of it. WATCHMEN is no exception.

    I like a lot of those comics, but I’m glad Grant Morrison and a few other people (Joe Casey, Darko Macan, Matt Fraction) have begun, with increasing success, to imagine other alternatives over the last ten years.

  12. brenticles says:

    Re: Comic shops

    So many are complete pits that I stopped going into any ages ago and order all comics on-line. I get a better price anyway. Years ago my wife started refusing to go into comic shops with me, but she would go to the adult store. She said the adult stores were cleaner, brighter, and the people weren’t as creepy. Grudgingly, I had to agree.

  13. “the earlier “nothing ever changes, Superman’s always 30something” is much more honest about being an unchanging literary construct”

    And it should be quite a easily mined construct. Comics today contain a number of conceits and constructs that are not so dissimilar from Oulipo, wherein you are imposing a number of restraints upon the work in order force yourself to expand upon the territory within the artificial borders that have been constructed.

    Basically every comic creator needs to read more Calvino and study Duchamp. He told us that it all begins with Gustav Corbet after all.

  14. Pedro Bouça says:

    An european guy who complains about super-heroes and then spends the rest of the article writing about… Well, you know. Not even a single line about the european market.

    Look out of your window and you’ll find a magnificent variety of genres in comics! And in your native tongue to boot.

  15. Mr Wesley says:

    I totally agree that work-for-hire creators should attempt to take ownership of the characters they’re writing/drawing. But I think that’s nearly impossible in this day and age to accomplish with the major franchise characters.

    For one thing, characters like Batman & Spider-Man are too valuable to their publishers to be allowed to veer too much from the public perceptions of them. Folks in the super-hero comics industry seem to believe (rightly or wrongly) that outsiders will be confused if they see a version of a character that different from they one they saw in cartoons as a kid. Dan Didio said that explicitly when they returned Kara Zor-El to the role of Supergirl, and it certainly seems implied with the returns of Hal Jordan, Barry Allen and Ray Palmer.

    Secondly, even when creators try to redefine a character, the aging fanbase won’t let them. We as super-hero fans personally have too much invested in a particular interpretation of a character to let that character go and move on. We all remember how much people howled when Hal Jordan was first turned into Parallax, and it’s only gotten worse over the past 10 years.

    Finally, I think it’s hard to put your own spin on a character and have it mean anything when EVERY writer is trying to take ownership of a character and put a new spin on that character every couple of years. All that spinning just makes the reader dizzy.

    The average writer stays on a title for between 24-36 issues. And, while that might be long enough to establish some continuity, it becomes more difficult when only 5-6 stories are completed and then someone new takes over and takes the character in a completely different direction.

    That’s why I appreciate creators like Palmiotti and Gray, who 2-3 issue arcs that allow them to develop the supporting cast, and writers like Peter David, who really have redefined the properties they write because they stay with them for 5+ years.

    (Sorry about the rant. This happens to be a sore spot with me.)

  16. Synsidar says:

    Superheroes don’t have to be written primarily as symbols, with arguments about them merely consisting of differing positions on what the heroes should symbolize. Provide rationales for their powers, make them compatible with their environments, instead of overlays on them, and a writer will have as wide an interpretive range as he would in any other genre.

    If one were to start with the premise that the Celestials created all of Marvel’s paranormals with a particular purpose in mind, the purpose would never have to be explicitly described. Writers could still refer to it occasionally, as a particular story’s theme warranted.

    SRS

  17. Marc, I think we agree with one another. I wasn’t saying they were successful. All they tend to do is restate the same answer again and again.

    I’d also add Promethea to the list. I’ve felt for a while now Promethea is Moore saying, “listen you idiots, Watchmen was an answer, not a question. Here is another answer. Now go back and read the fucking question.”

    It is very much like that parable DFW used to tell, about the old fish swimming upstream, remarking to the two young fish how nice the water is today, and the two young fish asking “what the hell is water?”

  18. Pedro:

    “An european guy who complains about super-heroes and then spends the rest of the article writing about… Well, you know. Not even a single line about the european market.”

    I’d like to think I’m not so much complaining as holding American comics — of which the superhero genre is a substantial part, which I don’t think is something anybody needs to be ashamed or apologetic about — up to the same standards as I do other forms of storytelling. I like superhero comics! I think there are a lot of pretty good ones, and I’d like to see more of those! And people are making them! And I like to write about those and try and figure out what they’re about!

    Nor do I think that the fact that I, as a European guy, am mainly interested in Anglo-American literature and pop culture requires justification or apology. I know there are comics in Europe. I love Larcenet and Lust and Dupuy and Berbérian and Kreitz and Sfar and other European creators. I have nothing against any branch of comics as a form.

  19. And Pedro:

    “Look out of your window and you’ll find a magnificent variety of genres in comics! And in your native tongue to boot.”

    This isn’t true. When I look out of my window I see a big, wet parking garage that makes a humming sound but hasn’t otherwise spoken to me since I moved in here, in my native tongue or any other. Thanks for the concern, though.

  20. RCheli says:

    Why superheroes? Because other genres (mystery, romance, action) can easily (and cheaply) be translated into other media and not lose their impact.

    Look, you can have a mystery novel or a mystery film, and it won’t cost $150 million to make and it will still be highly effective. Straight drama doesn’t require visuals.

    But how cheaply and effectively does the super-hero genre go into film (not cheaply), TV (not effectively), or novels (I’ve yet to read a good super-hero novel)?

  21. Synsidar says:

    But how cheaply and effectively does the super-hero genre go into film (not cheaply), TV (not effectively), or novels (I’ve yet to read a good super-hero novel)?

    Telepathy and other psychic abilities are powers, so stories based on them are essentially about (super)heroes and villains, as are stories that feature super science, especially when users of super science oppose each other. The costumes don’t make the characters.

    SRS

  22. Guido Rosas says:

    o “Any Writer Coming on to Batman Should at Least Attempt to Do Their Own Definitive Version”

    Reading the full interview, I would put a strong emphasis on THEIR, because I don´t think Morrison is advocating mediocre, by-the-number stories.

    If I understand correctly, he`s proposing using the iconic superheroes as means of self-expression, while being true to the nature of said characters. I think that’s the right approach, and much preferable to writers trying to be creative and having the heroes become rapers or killers (that`s actually a much more mediocre approach, IMO)

  23. Mr Wesley said:

    “We all remember how much people howled when Hal Jordan was first turned into Parallax, and it’s only gotten worse over the past 10 years.”

    But was that emblematic of fannish conservatism, or a valid reaction to a stupid-ass story?

  24. Jeffy says:

    “Why do we need superhero comics?”

    Do you need them? Of course not. There’s very little that we actually NEED. But if we enjoy them (and the numbers seem to support the fact that we as comic fans do enjoy them, in far greater numbers than we do anything else). Additionally, movies based on superhero comics tend to do exceptionally well, while movies based on non-superhero comics tend to do anywhere from well to terrible. So why shouldn’t we have superheroes when we A) like them and B) they sell really well, in every format?

  25. Kate Fitzsimons says:

    Maybe this makes me not particularly intellectual… but. Why do we have to *need* superheroes for them to be a valid genre?

    Do we *need* mystery novels? Romance novels? Thrillers? Not really, the world would keep spinning without them. But they’re fun, they’re interesting, they feed various storytelling desires that readers have and people like them. (Yes, comic sales numbers are down, but people reliably watch superhero movies and cartoons, so clearly, this is something a lot of people like.)

    And yes, within and around a genre’s boundaries, people create art.

    A lot of very smart people spend years coming up with elaborate, well thought out reasons why superhero stories are good for the human soul / bad for the human soul / dangerously childish / dangerously fascistic / liberating / uniquely suited to (cultural group here). And I’m not saying that they’re wrong to do so. But do superheroes really need defending?

    Must art and entertainment be justified in terms of redeeming social value and societal need?

    I don’t need grand marnier souffle. But people like to eat it and I like to make it.

  26. My vote is for Kate.

  27. Great post, Kate. Far too much of the comic punditocracy keeps picking the same old scabs because…well…I really don’t know why. Maybe the recent implosion of the American Manga market has them (once again) resenting the superhero genre and their inability to walk away from it.

  28. Nate Horn says:

    Props to Jeffy, too, for saying the same thing as Kate before Kate did! (Bros gotta watch out for each other, yo!)

    Both of you make great points. I’m just tired of people bitching endlessly about superhero comics they continue to buy. What do people expect from modern superhero comics?

  29. The point isn’t to “defend” superhero comics or to complain about them. I’m not interested in any of that.

    The point is to figure out why they’re around, what exactly people enjoy them for that other genres don’t deliver and what can be done with them that hasn’t been done.

    I honestly don’t understand why people get so defensive or hostile when these questions come up. You enjoy superhero comics for the sound and fury? More power to you, so do I. Nobody wants to take that away from you.

  30. Jim Kingman says:

    I enjoy superhero comics because they allow me to ‘escape’ from the real world for short periods of time. A superhero comic takes a few minutes to read. I can read one before going to work, one over my lunch hour, ten after dinner, a gazillion on the weekend, and take a whole box of ‘em when on a road trip, and still have lots of time to, y’know, get a life (which I have, but you know what I mean). Sure, the good versus evil aspect has kind of blurred over the years, but that’s ’cause they’re not marketed to eight to twelve year olds anymore (where’s the Comics Code Authority when you need it?). But there’s still that larger than life, colorfully costumed brigade of characters challenging the forces of evil, and all that. And if I want more than that, something deeper, there’s always a Vertigo comic, or something by Daniel Clowes or Sturm, and on and on. If you really have to argue why superhero comics exist as opposed to enjoying that they do exist (and some are hard to enjoy, granted, but, shoot, there are DECADES worth of superhero comics to enjoy), I think it’s time to move on to another genre. But don’t give up on comics, because there’s too much good stuff out there.

  31. Related to topic #2 of Spurgeon’s great article, I recently did a whole write-up about something I’ve noticed in comic shops across the country: the Girlfriend Section. Has anyone else seen one of these in their local shops? A designated waiting area for girlfriends and wives of the customers?

    http://thehefner.livejournal.com/632506.html

    I feel like that right there is particularly indicative of what’s wrong with comic shops being female-customer-unfriendly.

  32. SvenJ says:

    “I honestly don’t understand why people get so defensive or hostile when these questions come up.”

    oh please. you spend all day poking at a hornet’s nest with a stick, you don’t get to cry when the buzzing starts.

    it’s disingenuous and it doesn’t become you.

  33. Mr Wesley says:

    “But was that emblematic of fannish conservatism, or a valid reaction to a stupid-ass story?”

    Exactly.

  34. Sven:

    “you spend all day poking at a hornet’s nest with a stick, you don’t get to cry when the buzzing starts.”

    What if the buzzing starts when I’m looking down a well with a flashlight?

    Do I get to cry?

  35. Mr. Wesley responded to my question thusly:

    “Exactly.”

    Okay, and the answer to the Ultimate Question is 42.

    Non-responsive much?

  36. Marc-Oliver Frisch said:

    “The point isn’t to “defend” superhero comics or to complain about them. I’m not interested in any of that.

    The point is to figure out why they’re around, what exactly people enjoy them for that other genres don’t deliver and what can be done with them that hasn’t been done.

    I honestly don’t understand why people get so defensive or hostile when these questions come up. You enjoy superhero comics for the sound and fury? More power to you, so do I. Nobody wants to take that away from you.”

    People may get defensive when the question is framed in what seems a snarky manner. There’s nothing “new” about the question of what superheroes mean, as it goes back to the first hostile commentaries on the genre by Sterling North, Gershon Legman and Doctor You Know Who (no relation to Dcotor Who). What WOULD be novel would be to frame the question of what their stories mean in terms of genre considerations, as you did above. You can get somewhere by saying that you prefer the way prose sci-fi treats fantasy-concepts to the way superhero comics treat them; that’s a starting-point. But when Spurgeon says that superheroes are being justified only in terms of their profitablity, that’s just a baseless assertion, unless he wants to point to specific comments by fans (“I sure am happy Marvel’s mid-year report was positive!”)

    Kate’s take on it is even more on-target. It’s a fallacy that literature of any kind is ever primarily about “ideas.” Ideas work their way into the expressive mix. When ideas take prominence, we have not literature (high or low) but philosophy and/or hortatory speeches.

  37. "Why do we need super-hero comics?"
    That’s the wrong question. This is not a "need" industry.
    "Why do we want super-hero comics?" is what should be asked.

  38. Synsidar says:

    “Why do we want super-hero comics?” is what should be asked.

    That is the appropriate question. It’s easy to see how fantastic characters can be used to indulge fantasies of various types, but harder to see how they can be used for more intellectual purposes. Right now, the X-universe is recycling persecution stories from the ’70s and ’80s, perhaps because the milieu Morrison worked with was too challenging for the writers.

    What’s the point of repeatedly writing stories about minority characters being persecuted? If the stories were about normal humans, the market for them would be tinier than the (shrinking?) market for the X-stories. The sci-fi trappings, the artwork, and attachments to various X-characters seem to be what keep people reading. From the creative standpoint, there’s no more reason to work with the X-characters than there is to work with a soap opera that’s nearing the end of its run.

    The question wouldn’t have to be asked, though, if the superhero stories were close-ended works. If a story has a definite ending, the writer has to at least try to say something meaningful. With the current approach, I suppose Marvel still assumes that most of the readership on any title still turns over in a few years.

    SRS

  39. Jim Kingman says:

    We want superhero comics because deep down we hope that any new superhero comic book we read is as good as, if not better than, the best superhero comics we’ve ever read.

  40. I don’t get this? Why is this even a topic of discussion… why can’t people just read the things they enjoy… I really don’t get it. As far as comic shops go, seems like everyone knows how to run a comic shop then the those who actually run them… you know the saying, those who can, do; those who can’t criticize… I’m so tired of the shit we comic retailers have to put up with…

    Dan Veltre
    Dewey’s Comic City
    Madison, NJ

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