Posts By Comic_Diva

Bone the Great Adventure

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I’ve been reading some really good comics lately and it has helped as I recover from my depression. I have been tweeting about some of the stories but for the most part I want to mention them here. My current loves are: Clean Room, Giant Days, Postal, Saga, Mae, Black Hammer, Harrow County and Dept. H. I tried some new comics recently, “Spell on Wheels” and “Seven to Eternity”. So far I have been quite pleased with both. I imagine as I heal and am more myself, there will be more books added to my list. For now, this is good I think. img_5583

In between playing Pokémon Go (yes I still play though Niantic keeps updating the fun right out of it), I have been reading some olimg_5587d stuff and some new stuff. I revisited Bone, a truly wondrous tale by the great Jeff Smith.

At one point I had 4 copies of the one volume edition, I gave one away (to encourage more fans), yet still have three. One is a reader copy, the one read through most recently and man did I finger those pages (haha). One is a limited edition leather volume with lovely gold foil.  My last copy is part of a limited edition box set that I never opened. I adore the thing too much to take the plastic off.

What starts off as a fun-filled silly adventure morphs into a ‘Lord of the Rings’ rival. It’s entertaining, full of drama and imaginative. Still re-reading Bone got me excited to finally read my copy of Bone: CODA. img_5589I love that it picked up right where the original tale left off. As a fan of this story and its creator, what a great way to start a new chapter.

Been too long

It’s been a while since I read a comic book, let alone posted about it. My twitter page has been quiet as well. This is attributed to problems in my personal life. I will try not to go into too much detail however in the interest of “self care,” here’s my story.

I used to think I worked for one of the best companies on the planet. I felt I had a promising career and future there. I was so into my company and enjoying my job that I volunteered personal time and joined projects without being asked. Things were going great until my old boss retired. The new boss was fine at first…it was business as usual and I was still loving life and my job. Then something changed, my boss started harassing me. Everyday it was something new, a constant moving target.

I persevered in rough conditions out of my control for two years. Needless to say things that used to bring me solace and joy no longer had effect. As things became more and more difficult for me, I lost interest in my wonderful hobby. This blog was the first casualty, then my social media presence and finally (hate to admit it) comics. Every now and then I walk into the comic cave and look at the bags of books I should be dying to read and at the boxes of graded comics I should be racing to open. Instead, I sit and stare at nothing or lay on the couch binge watching television. I’m startled by abrupt noises, I have headaches, hypersensitivity, nightmares, mood swings and a hard time concentrating, worst of all I’ve lost my sense of humor.

I am hopeful. I am getting help and I hope to recover, I hope to be myself again and I hope to find that old joy I used to get when Wednesdays rolled around. I’m hopeful.

Depth of Dept. H

Having been and still am a fan of Matt Kindt’s Mind MGMT, I was IMG_3947quick to add his latest creation to my monthly comic book pull list. Honestly it didn’t matter what the comic was going to be about, Matt and Sharlene Kindt’s names were on the cover, I couldn’t pass it up. The truth is, I would have snagged the first issue of Dept. H no matter what…because it’s a murder mystery. In addition to being a Kindt fan, I’m also not one to pass up a well scripted “who done it.” I cracked the cover of Dept. H and dove right in.

IMG_3948This comic has all the wonderful earmarks of an intriguing murder mystery: strong female protagonist, death under unusual circumstances, isolated list of suspects and everyone involved has personal history with the investigator. As I read through the pages, IMG_3949I imagined an atmosphere similar to that of “The Abyss.” As expected with a Kindt title no page goes to waste (sans advertisements). The front cover is used to describe the unique details of Mia’s deep dive suit. The back cover provides publisher and creator details.

 

I, for one, am looking forward to learning all about the crew of Dept. H, a science research facility located at the bottom of the ocean. Even more important, I want to know who and why someone would kill the smartest man on earth?  Issue two hits comics shelves May 18th, join me.

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Comic Diva’s Favorite New Comics from 2015

In case you haven’t noticed yet, I love comics. I’m down with the reading, with the collecting, and sometimes the speculating. I’m reflecting on comics that I really enjoyed in 2015. Oh, there were “tons” of them, and I can’t write about every one of them, so I narrowed the list to share the best. These were my guidelines:

I have 119 books on my 2015 “Pull List”; the majority of them are NOT DC or Marvel. The 2015 “Pull List” includes books from Boom Studios, Valiant, Image, Vertigo and Dark Horse. There are some smaller press books on the 2015 “Pull List”, though I admit the spectrum isn’t very broad. The books on this list have a release date within the year of 2015, despite the printed cover date. Also, I don’t include re-launched titles that start over with issue 1, because this is too gimmicky for me.  That’s it.  Ready?

IMG_2632Giant Days
I have really enjoyed some titles from Boom Studios. Their IMG_2347solicitations are truly unique, ranging from kid-friendly to mature, and much between. I really love the YA drama of Giant Days, and–honestly– some of the funny antics showcased in the book truly remind me of my college youth. Dating, roommates, drama IMG_2433fields, lost love, and secret crushes are all tackled in this engaging, ongoing series by John Allison and Lissa Treiman. IMG_2346Included in the mix are strong young women who push at social stereotypes, acknowledge self-doubt, and develop strong personal character. Initially solicited as a six-part mini series, Giant Days’ success was rewarded when the creative team was asked to extend the series to 12 issues. The comic was so popular that it’s now an on-going series with an updated creative team. I’m in it for the long haul as I find Giant Days too much fun to pass up.

 

IMG_2633Harrow County
When I first read about Harrow County in Previews, I immediately added it to my regular pull list. IMG_1623I instantly recognized this comic book was going to be something I’d love to read. Young Miss Emmy has a mind of her own and a soft heart for the dark souls that inhabit the creepy places of Harrow County. She can speak to the haints (haunts), and what she says to them is typically motivating, if not compassionate. Have a ghoul IMG_1626kicking up a fuss in your attic? Emmy will gladly quell the behavior. Just know, she’ll do it by letting the ghoul know it’s welcome, and by inviting it to stay put. Emmy has a strong streak of “right” versus “wrong”, and she condemns those that would use her for something evil. She adheres to the “live and let live” motto, even if it does not always work out for her. The writer, Cullen Bunn solidified his space on my “read everything” list when he penned “The Sixth Gun.” IMG_1399He truly is a fantastic writer and I’m a happy fan. I first came across the artist, Tyler Crook, while reading WitchFinder (another Dark Horse favorite). Tyler’s drawing style and color blends match so perfectly with Cullen’s words that their joint work has uncanny flow. They’re a creative combination paired in heaven, I say.

IMG_2634Postal
Eden, Wyoming is an intriguing place. It’s a layover town full of criminals. IMG_0515Throw in several random acts of violence, a dirty FBI agent, a postman with Asperger’s, and dark family secrets, and you have the backdrop for the comic Postal, written by Matt Hawkins & Bryan Hill, drawn by Isaac Goodhart. Mark is IMG_0516the local postman with Asperger’s. Actually, he’s the only postman in town. Mark pays attention to who gets what in the mail, and reports this information to the mayor, who “just happens to be” his mother. By way of post, the mayor collects the town secrets and uses what she knows to keep everyone in line. When things don’t go her way, the mayor calls in the sheriff. Can you guess with whom the mayor’s having an affair? Postal is more than family drama though,IMG_0835 the series is on issue… and so far what readers have learned about the townspeople is: there’s a former meth dealer in residence, a cheating federal agent on-site, the murderer of Mark’s sister on the loose, and a suspected child molester in hiding. Oh yeah! There’s so much going on, so many sub-plots in this comic, I can’t help but keep reading it.

Coming in Part 2: Head Lopper, Chrononauts, and Descender. (By the way, feel free to leave me a comment or drop me a line about your favorite comic book from 2015. I welcome the discussion.) ****Update****

I would have loved to continue this discussion but truth is, I let the time slip past me. With that understanding, here are the books I really enjoyed in 2015:

  • Descender
  • Chrononauts
  • Head Lopper
  • We Stand on Guard
  • Dark Corridor
  • Paper Girls
  • Clean Room
  • Black Magick
  • Monstress
  • The Goddamed
  • Toyko Ghost

Leaving Megalopolis

IMG_2452Publisher: Dark Horse Books
Writers: Gail Simone
Artist: J. Calafiore

Super heroes no longer fight crime, protect the public or seek justice. Instead, all the super-beings in this world have been infected with a virus. A virus that turns them against the people they once protected, and whom they now hunt for sport. Carnage and death ensue.IMG_2453

The story starts with a lone police officer walking cautiously down a deserted city street, chaos and destruction is all around her. What follows sets the tone for the story: a human body falls from the sky and splatters on the ground in the officer’s vicinity. Leaving Megalopolis is a tale of survival in modern America. A small band of people attempt escape the city limits while being dogged, if not herded, by murderous capes and tights.

Leaving Megalopolis focuses the human mind and how it behaves under extreme duress, and that is exactly what you get in this dark tale written by the illustrious Gail Simone. IMG_2456The story is jammed packed with all kinds of delicious details. All the action takes place within the city limits, and there’s a hidden twist at the end. (No spoilers!) Plus, we learn about human will, self-sacrifice, personal loss, treachery and redemption.

Cool Factor:
Can you speak, move, or breath quietly enough so as not to attract the attention of a killer with super-hearing?IMG_2455

Format:
Hardcover, Trade paperback

I love a good con…Comic Con that is

I’ve had the privilege of attending several cons in my day; from C2E2, Wizard World Philly (back when it was good), to New York Comic Con and Baltimore. Based on my experience, not all cons are the same, so here’s my take.

IMG_2301New York Comic Con – If you are interested in large scale, tons of pop culture, celebrities (old & new), and don’t mind lines that sore feet, New York Comic Con is your bag, baby. From rare con exclusives to big name announcement, and celebrities galore, New York has grown so large it’s crowds dwarf San Diego. Getting tickets is difficult, but worth it for the number of events, swag, and sheer comic fandom to be had. In 2014, it was rumored that 150,000 people per day entered the doors of the Jarvis Center for New York Comic Con.

C2E2 – Let’s say you want something a little less hectic, IMG_2300marginally smaller, but not small?  Then, C2E2 is for you. There are huge crowds, but not so daunting as to impede your con enjoyment. C2E2 is a spring con that hosts a number of comic and pop culture flare, a little bit of something for everyone. There are even big name celebrities, though not as may as… say… New York.

IMG_2302Baltimore – If you are a true comic book fan, looking for a comic con that really means, “comic readers con,” then Baltimore is the show for you (and me). The focus at Baltimore is comic books and comic book fans. While walking the floor of the show I overheard a self-publisher say, “This is a great con for creator-owned works. I’ve sold more books at this con than any other.” In my opinion, he was likely telling the truth. The draw of Baltimore is the pure focus on comics and the people who like to read comic books. It’s also good ground for those willing to try new things (new reads, new characters, the unknown). While the “big two” publishers may not appear at the con, the smaller presses have a field day. Additionally, Baltimore’s VIP pass is the only ticket in the field that actually gets the passholder early admission. Most VIP tickets mention something about “first access” to the con, but this is smoke and mirrors.  For other cons, “first access” is simply a ploy, as convention organizers don’t actually mean early admission.  They mean that… maybe… the first spots in line (if you get there first) at the door before opening might be available and open for you to stand and wait like everyone else, granting just a few moments more to the holder, before swarms teem in at your heels.

IMG_2299Wizard World Comic Con Philly – Interested in a mix bag of celebrities, sci-fi, wrestling figures, and comics? Any of the Wizard World cons is just for you. A-listers, B-listers and some of those in-between appear at Wizard cons. A draw for some has been Wizard’s ongoing agreement with Image Comics, allowing the continuous re-issuing of The Walking Dead Issue 1. Each Wizard World con has a new variant cover of the hugely popular comic book series. I haven’t attended a Wizard con since 2007, so I can’t say with assurance that this is still true. However, there have been fewer and fewer top-notch comic book guests and more pop culture guest appearing at these cons. Wizard cons aren’t overly expensive and have many locations thus making it still a good draw.

I’ve still some cons on my comic con buckets list: Emerald City Comic, Toronto Fan Expo, and perhaps–if I’m willing to take out a second mortgage on my home, give up my aversion to crowds–San Diego Comic Con. I’ve been hearing good things about Dragon Con, that may be in my future as well. We will see.

Villains…Villains are cool!

Villain: a cruelly malicious person who is involved in or devoted to wickedness or crime (source Dictionary.com). To me, a strong hero is only as good as his/her villain. In my opinion, weak bad guys can only promote weak good guys. So, I say, bring on the baddies! I’ve read comics depicting bad guys as morons or buffoons, which makes me wonder why any hero would waste his or her time. However, I’ve read some hardcore bad guys, the likes of which demand a reader keep lights on and have some form of weapon in hand while reading. Strong villains help shape strong hero characters. The adversity should be difficult and require Superhuman will to overcome. Here are some the villains I admire, yet fear:

Favorite Villain 1 – Red Skull from Old Man Logan (Marvel)

In the future, the bad guys win; Red Skull opens a can of whoop-ass on the Avengers and doesn’t stop until Captain America is dead. Then he and the rest of the baddies parcel out parts of North America like they are slicing a fresh made apple pie. Defining moment: Red Skull putting his fingers through Captain America’s eye sockets. Years later, this certified villain walks around wearing Caps uniform with Caps dried blood still on it.

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Favorite Villain 2 – Traveling Salesman from Severed (Image)

The villain of this story comes in the form of an elderly traveling salesman. This man has an unusual taste for human flesh and particularly enjoys victimizing fatherless boys who seek direction and the American Dream in 1916. Defining moment: it’s not unusual to see an older person remove their false teeth. What a reader might not expect is sharper and more deadly teeth to appear in the place of said removed false teeth.

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Favorite Villain 3 – Boogie Man from Stuff of Legend (Th3rd World Studios)

Some villains use physical strength or special powers to overwhelm their prey/victims. In the case of the Boogieman, though, it is a victim’s personal weakness that is used against him or her. If there’s a secret on the team, the Boogieman finds it and exploits it with deadly force. Defining moment: the Boogieman uses Percy the Pig’s cowardice to kill the Colonel by tearing him in half.

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Favorite Villain 4 – The Governor from The Walking Dead (Image)

It is the end of the world, and civilized life is a thing of the past. So, it’s easy to see how a psychotic narcissist ends up as the leader of a group of weakened survivors, desperate for a sense of belonging and some stability. When the Governor is first introduced, it is obvious his smile is nothing by which to take comfort. He very plainly explains to Rick, Glenn, and Michonne that he feeds town trespassers to walkers for entertainment. Defining moment: within moments of meeting, the Governor demonstrates his sadism by cutting off Rick’s hand.

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Favorite Villain 5 – Nixon Nun from Fell (Image)

Detective Richard Fell has his hands full dealing with cases of all sorts in Snowtown. But, what really has him spooked in his new town is the “Nixon Nun”; named so for the Richard Nixon mask she wears on top of her religious habit. Without muttering a single word, Nixon Nun causes Fell’s skin to crawl, and rightly so, as she always appears on the scenes of heinous crimes. Defining moment: as police look on, Nixon Nun solicits a prostitute for nefarious means.

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Favorite Villain 6 – Rat Creatures from Bone (Cartoon Books)

It would be easy to dismiss the Rat Creatures in Bone as brainless lemmings doing the bidding of an ineffective king. And, that would be a mistake. Though they have limited thinking capacity, what the Rat Creatures lack in brains, they make in sheer numbers and teeth/claw size. In large packs, Rat Creatures are quite deadly, destroying everything in their path as they carry out orders from their leader. Defining moment: Kingdok makes easy work of Gran’ma Ben, tossing her around like a rag doll. This is noteworthy as Gran’ma Ben withstood battles with Dragons much more daunting and seemingly treacherous than a pack of rats.

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Favorite Villain 7 – General Clarkson from Think Tank (Top Cow)

The military is no stranger to collateral damage and sacrifice. So, what is a general to do when a Colonel does not obey orders? When a Colonel gets wind of a clandestine operation not approved by the President, he attempts to blow the whistle and is met with a bullet from General Clarkson. Defining moment: General Clarkson issues punishment for disloyalty with extreme prejudice, spraying the Colonel’s brain matter all over the resident genius Dr. Loren.

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Favorite Villain 8 – The Purple Man from Alias (Marvel)

No need for subtly, Zebediah Killgrave, known as the Purple Man, emits a pheromone that allows him to verbally control anyone, including superheroes. In the Marvel Max universe, the Purple Man presents a formidable foe for Jessica Jones (a.k.a. Jewel), and toys with her for several weeks before he is apprehended. Defining moment: Killgrave initially suggests Jessica take her clothes off, using her nakedness as a way to humiliate her. However, upon learning the Avengers are in the area, Killgrave orders her to attack her teammates instead, with devastating results.

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Favorite Villain 9 – Doomsday from Superman (DC)

Possessing enough strength to gut punch Superman, Doomsday entered the DC universe with a vengeance. Arriving on the outskirts of Metropolis, he proceeds on a warpath to the city and destroys any superhero attempting to stop him. Defining moment: with a mighty blow Doomsday kills the Man of Steel, something that has never before happened.

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Favorite Villain 10 – Alien Invader from Wild’s End (Boom Studios)

An unrelenting machine with a single objective, to Kill! That is the villain of Wild’s End. Aliens land in the sleepy countryside and wreck havoc on occupants. There are no requests or demands, simply the burning of all organic matter (people) that interacts with the alien. Defining moment: villain issues a resident’s death with a full facial blast of fire. Ouch!

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This list is by no means all inclusive, there are tons of great villains out there. Have one you want to share? Leave me a comment.

Stumptown

Stumptown

Publisher: Oni PressIMG_0882

Writers: Greg Rucka

Artist: Matthew Southworth

In the span of 24 hours, Dex pisses off two rednecks, makes a reluctant deal with a local crime boss, gets shot point blank… several times, and ends up arrested. That’s quite an accomplishment for a moonlighting private investigator with a gambling problem. Dex is in the hole for about eighteen-grand, so when her credit is no longer good, casino management pulls her card. To pay off her debt, Dex agrees to honor a request by a casino manager, and sets course to find a missing person. The tale is gritty, dark, moody, and enjoyable. What appears to be a straight-forward missing person case morphs into gang wars, illegal drugs, and murder. Within the first few pages of Stumptown, Dex is shot and left for dead in a river. Quite the opener. From White Out to Lazarus, Greg Rucka consistently narrates a spectacular female tale. He creates strong female protagonists who do not lean on conventional stereotypes, and Dex is no exception.

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Cool Factor: Dex has a nonchalant attitude about everything, which may give the impression she is not interested or paying attention to people talking at her. Truth is, she is way more astute than the bad guys realize, and–nine times out of ten–she is 3 steps ahead of her enemies.

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Format: Floppies, Trade paperback

We Likes the Comics, We likes the Grading

There are two “camps” of comic book collecting:  those who slab and those who don’t. I readily admit, I am in the first group and I’m perfectly happy to stay put. “Slab” or “slabbing” is collector slang for “comic encapsulation,” otherwise known as “grading.” Since 2000, impartial thirty-party comic book grading has been available thanks to Certified Guaranty Company, known in the industry as CGC. IMG_1232Several knock-off/bootleg grading companies have emerged, but none of the CGC quality… until last year. More recently, Comic Book Certification Services (CBCS) launched, and CGC finally as a worthy competitor. I have used both grading companies and, to be honest, I like them equally. CGC corners the market; they have been around for 15 years and are an industry icon/standard. CBCS IMG_0530was founded by some of the folks who started CGC. They have a similar business model and offer competitive services to CGC, except they offer less expensive service. One last plus to CBCS is the general public can submit comics to them directly, whereas CGC requires either a paid membership or submission through a third-party.

Okay enough about that. So you have decided you want to submit your books to CGC or CBCS. You believe you have a rough idea regarding the potential grade your comic(s) will earn, so you pack up your book(s), ship to one of the graders, and wait the 6-8 months it takes for your submission to go through the grading cycle.

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Screenshot from ComicsPriceGuide.com

Why have your comic book graded? Because it increases the value of your comic and thus increases the value of your collection. Here’s an example:

In 2003 The Walking Dead sold for $2.95. By 2015, the inaugural issue is worth $1,600 raw (not slabbed). A 9.8 (near mint, slabbed and graded) copy of The Walking Dead Issue 1 is valued at $4,300. I say no more.

You have submitted what you believe to be near mint books expecting a grade between 9.6 to 9.8. Low and behold your book(s) returns to you and–to your surprise– with a lower grade than you anticipated.

IMG_1732As I’ve mentioned in my “about me” post, I am a collector/hobbyist. Therefore, the joy of the hobby comes first. Value or speculations of “it might be worth something/it’s a good investment” comes in a limp second. I like slabs. I think slabs look awesome on display, and I do like that graded comics add value to my collection. Feels like a win-win. I preface the following with “I am not a professional comic book grader,” I am offering my advice on the topic just to share.

I have self-submitted over 100 comics (okay that’s not a lot, but still). I have received grades that range from 9.6 to 9.9. During my early submitting days, 9.6 appears to be my average. Over time, however, I have learned to really pay attention to the physical details of the books I submit and have improved my average to 9.8. Though, admittedly, I have seen a lot more 9.9 than I expected (let’s hope that trend continues).

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Okay let’s grade some comics – amateur style. Dirt and oil from your fingertips can cost you grading points in the end. I recommend using gloves while you assess your book. I have experience with cotton and latex. Both types of glove seem fine, though I recommend staying away from latex gloves that have powder in them, as this substance can be introduced to your comic and it will cause damage. IMG_1744To properly assess your comic, you must be able to view the front and back of the book. If bagged and boarded, remove your book (be gentle). Good maneuverable lighting helps with assessment, as changing light angle can show defects or discrepancies. Have a clean work area to perform your assessment, and get right to it. First, look at the corners of your comics. Are the corners crisp or blunted? If one or more of the corners is blunted, not at a point, points are deducted from the grade. Be very critical. It is better to assess your book lower than to assume a higher grade. Next, look at the spine, and pay attention to the staples. Are there any creases in the spine? What about staple tears, including those from the printer? Again, small dents and dings cost points, and any blemish can make the difference between 9.8 and 9.4. Okay, so you’ve looked at the corners, reviewed the spine. Now, lay the book flat and determine if there are any scuff marks on the cover. IMG_1745Once you assess the outward condition of your book, give the pages a flip, and do so from cover to cover. Here you are looking for folded page corners or manufacturer defects. If the book looks sharp and clean, give it your best grading guess. Remember, be critical. If you think it is a 9.8, consider 9.6. If you think it is a 9.9, consider 9.8.

What’s the point to all this? Having an idea of the potential grade of your comic should assist you in making the decision to invest in grading your comic book.

I applied this assessment method to this reprint of The Walking Dead. I’ll post a follow up in about 6 months as to the grade it received. IMG_1746

*** UPDATE *** January 2016 ***
The above comic has just arrived from CBCS. It was graded 9.8 and I am quite pleased. And for the record it took a little over 4 months, that some great turn around time I say!

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My Love Hate Relationship with Variant Cover Comics (more like love)

IMG_1464As a modern comic collector, I am bombarded with new and fresh comics each week. The conundrum in collecting is deciding what I want while trying to maintain a budget. Then, some hot, new, creative team introduces a “must have” book, and–just to spice things up–the publisher offers a kazillion variants. The completest in me wants very badly to have every issue of the new Archie relaunch AND every one of those awesome Star Wars covers issued by Marvel. Some books are issued as “1 in 10” variants or “1 in 25.” There are “1 in 50,” too, and so forth and so on. Add to these “1 in…” are special interests variants like Ghost Variant, Phantom Variant, Loot Crate Variant and Hastings Variant. Sometimes, to encourage high order numbers, publishers allow retailers their very own special variant unique to their store!

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Publishers aren’t just issuing variants for comic release dates. They are also doing special limited (debatable) print runs for specific comic conventions, such as San Diego Comic Con, New York Comic Con, or any of those Wizard World conventions. This means the market is duly flooded with variant cover comic books as far as the eye can see. Some variants really are extremely rare; like those 1:100 and 1:200, and especially those 1:300. Some variants are limited by print run, as only 500 copies are made. That’s it. Five-hundred. All these different approaches to printing a comic book means a collector has the potential to be inundated with… too much. And, can you imagine what it must be like for the retailers? What about all the stock that doesn’t sell?

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So here’s my love/hate: I like variety and I enjoy having the opportunity to see artistic vision, one artist versus another. And, I–like many other collectors–want that rare book that might be worth money many months (years) from now. But, I realize there is a down side to this hype. Variants cause an extra layer of speculation in this hobby, and that speculation can turn some collectors off. What’s hot now may fizzle out later, and what I paid a premium for today may not be worth cover a few months from now. This means if I don’t want to get burned I have to be discerning.

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I recently stumbled on to this website and found myself wishing I had more money. I am a sucker for really unique variants. I mean, I want something more than just the black and white variant. I will pursue variants by specific artists, people I like, such as: Charles P. Wilson III or Fiona Staples and I’ll pay whatever is the asking price. Honestly, if I didn’t impose my own restriction on variant purchases I would go broke trying to own them all. As I recall, the Archie relaunch had about 20 different covers. Some were amazing and some, well acquired taste. If you are a Godzilla fan, there were over 100 variants issued by IDW. That’s like a short box of comics all for one issue.

Update just before posting, the awesome variant subscription service Four Color Grails has closed. This saddens me as I really enjoyed their enthusiasm for the hobby. I feel lucky enough to have gotten some of their books. RIP 4colorGrails.

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