Category Archives: Commerce

Striking twice, some day

heroalliance9I’m realizing from the late 80s through the mid 90s, lots of people missed “the way they were” and tried to reboot Marvel, or more broadly, something about Marvel. Much the same way a lot of us were doing it through the role-playing medium too. And man did people keep trying.

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But they’ll be valuable

mvp34I guess I had about 30 of these. You probably never heard of them. Read the rest of this entry

Spawn of Zap

nexuszapSeptember is Cosmic Zap month here at Doctor Xaos Comics Madness. I don’t think it’s hard to understand why it’s generally considered a 70s thing. What happened to it? Did anything happen to it? Was it just a 70s thing?

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Whoa-oh-oh na na, whoa-oh-oh na na

You'll never guess what Cap got to do.

You’ll never guess what Cap got to do.

Perhaps it was the counterculture, or having parents who were born well before WWII. As a kid, I was very turned off by all Marvel’s 70s gimmicks like Superman vs. Spider-Man, the Spider-Man car, or weird toys like the thing where you put the thing in Spider-Man’s mouth. Read the rest of this entry

Give me liberty

Approaching the perfect ur-issue of superhero team comics

Nigh the ur-issue of superhero team comics

This was a small, feisty, doomed push for a bit there in 1987-88 to recapture the superhero magic. It succeeded. It’s a superior supers comic, full of action and plot, somehow combining totally kid-friendly with complete lucidity, standard but completely justified actions and interactions. It was charming, intelligent, wonderfully drawn, and fun. Eight issues is all we got.

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Justice comes by night

What would you do?

What would you do?

BONUS POST: Thanks to Larry Lade and his June pledge at the Doctor Xaos Patreon! When I talk about “stepping out of the river,” I’m talking about Marvel superheroes and titles very similar to them. It doesn’t mean no comics at all, and that holds especially for 1992 or so, when I phased out of superheroes but continued buying tons of titles, and became a dedicated comics pusher upon my entire social life for about the next 15 years. Read the rest of this entry

The way underground

My kind of Old School dungeon crawl, ya punks.

My kind of Old School dungeon crawl, ya punks.

Hey, I kept this post mostly SFW but most of the links in it go to a great big NOT SFW, so go ahead and click on those and lose your job, if you want.

There were a lot of other comics around during my childhood besides the ones I bought at the newsstand, spelled a wee bit differently. Read the rest of this entry

I, said the Fly

He could have been a contender.

This was real.

Every so often, one can see superhero comics’ heart. Read the rest of this entry

Kim Yale

Kim

Kim

I’d returned to reading comics in the summer of 1985. By the summer of 1986, I blush to confess, I had become an ardent letter-writer to multiple titles, a letterhack as the term went then, as well as pen-pal with several other people with the same behavioral disorder (remember: no email, no internet, no personal computers, nothin’ but paper letters and the phone, people). Read the rest of this entry

‘Verse this

Cool! We nailed it! Oh wait ... why can't it move? And it seems unable to breathe ... and its wrists are bleeding ...

Cool! We got it all stretched out up there and we nailed it! Oh wait … why can’t it move? And it seems unable to breathe … and its wrists are bleeding …

It’s the worst thing ever to happen to my experience of Marvel and other superhero comics.

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At corporate, they just sell paper

You think they care what it is?

You think they care what it is?

The Koch bros don’t give a shit, no pun intended, whether you buy Quilted Northern or Angel Soft, because they own them both.

Some years ago some venture capitalists found that, inexplicably, you can sell even more cheap paper to people if you invest a bit in writing on it and coloring it first. Comics are a particularly simple form of that kind of paper. The primary cost is buying it and distributing it in slightly altered form, with some writing and coloring, folded this way or that, with staples or whatever.

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The beginning

Home: right in the middle, in the top ridges of the central mountain range.

Home neighborhood: Del Monte Park, in the middle of the peninsula, at the north bend in Highway 68, in the top ridges of the next-to-highest mountain range. Not as idyllic as advertised, if you’re not rich.

2010: this genetic monster is 52 in this photo

2010: this genetic monster is 52 in this photo

My next-oldest brother’s name is Danny. He’s an athletic bad-ass; you can see him do crazy-athlons online, and if you’re into MMA, he devised the only sensible scoring system known. But back in 1970, he was a buck-toothed 12-year-old whose big brother called him “Toothpick,” with a hyper-imaginative six-year-old brother reading at his grade level, and one thing he could do to make me less obnoxious was to read comics with me. Later, when he got all jock-ish and grew up and stuff, he left the pile to me. Read the rest of this entry

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