Report what comic books you have read today--and tell us a little something about it while you're here!

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I haven't been in the mood to read too many comic books lately for a variety of reasons. I thought Ant #1 would be sufficiently mindless, but it was just plain stupid. that led me to backissues of Supreme, but they were even worse than I remembered. I think I'm in the mood for something like Kirby, but not Kirby. Oftentimes, when I find myself in this mood, I turn to Eric Larsen's Savage Dragon. the problem with Larsen's work, though, is that he imitates Kirby but he doesn't emulate Kirby. 

Who here remembers the comics of the 1990s? Sure, there are plenty of folks here who remember the comics of the 1960s, but I think this board has "aged out" of the fans of that era. Not that the '90s were all that great; "Sturgeon's Law" applies. (It applies to the '60s, too.) One of the problems of the '90s is that publishers weren't content with simply launching new titles; they were interested in launching new universes. there was Malibu's Ultraverse, Dark horse's Comics Greatest World, Continuity Comics, Defiant Comics, Future Comics, and more. So I delved into my longbox labled "Miscellaneous New Universes" to see if I could find something that suit my current mood.

STUPID HEROES #1-3

The first thing I found was Stupid Heroes by Peter Laird (yes, that Peter Laird) from the "Next Comics" imprint of Mirage Publishing. I read all three of these issues as they were released and liked them, but I haven't re-read them in nearly 30 years, and today is the first time I read them in a single sitting. The premise is that dementia dominus, the "stupidhero" disease, is afflicting heroes and villains alike at random. It takes place in a shared universe with other Mirage titles, but unfortunately, the TMNT lightning did not strike a second time where Stupid Heroes was concerned. 

MYSTERYMEN COMICS #1-4:

Moving on to something less obscure (?), Mysterymen Comics was released in conjunction with the Mysterymen movie (my personal favorite superhero movie until Joker). the Mysterymen first appeared in two issues of Captain Carrot, #16-17, but that title never really appealed to me. Mysterymen, OTOH... well, here's how Bob Burden described it:

"The Mysterymen project focuses on the lowest stratum of the superhero universe. A bizarre collection of costumed adventurers, deemed unqualified for the major-league superhero teams, these wild-card heroes also wind up with some of the strangest cases and dirtiest jobs out there. While some Mysterymen have mediocre or uncontrollable powers, others have no real powers at all. some have deep psychological or behavioral problems, some have scandalous reputations and checkered pasts, and some are simply insane."

The Mysterymen of the comics have nothing to do with the Mysterymen of the movie and vice versa. The ones in the first issue include the Strangler, Metro Marauder, Then Hummer and the Spleen. Burden had big plans for this series. He pitched it as three separate series: the flagship title; Mysterious Origins (which he saw running 30 issues); and All-Villains Comics. Dark Horse opted to go with a single series, but burden maintained dual numbering, so that #2 was also "Mysterious Origins #1" and #4 was also "All-Villain #1." Unfortunately, these were the only four issues released. If you like the Legion of Substitute Heroes, you ought to love Mysterymen.

Star Wars Tales #10 - Apparently, Dark Horse had a Star Wars anthology series. The lead story is by the Hitman creative team Garth Ennis and John Mcrea, and they did a good job of presenting us a Stormtrooper story. Overall, I thought this was a good comic. The Chewbacca one I thought was the weakest by far. It is about him dealing with his jealousy over the burgeoning romance between Han and Leia.

Superboy's Legion - This is an Elseworld's story in which Superboy's ship is found in the 30th century and he is raised by RJ Brande. The Science Police is run by a computer system named Universo. They give Superboy a lot of grief for using his powers, and leaving the planet without permission. He strikes out on his own and starts his own super team. On their first mission to save Rimbor from an asteroid, they are attacked by the Fatal Five. I won't reveal who the villain is, but it wasn't too surprising. I had a guess for the big reveal that came later, but I was wrong. So, its always nice to be surprised by a story.

Though, of course, I used a term long in use, and now more of an older fan's word. It was even adapted by Babylon 5 as the telepaths' word for non-telepaths, a kind of fannish in-joke and critique, and apparently, in the Xanth books to describe people from our world. It's possible it inspired "Muggles," but that claim remains contested.

Jeff of Earth-J said:

I'm pretty sure I did read #7-9 back in the day, which featured Image's version of "Thor" (which had more to do with Marvel comics than Norse mythology, although copious footnotes tried way to hard to convince readers otherwise. The first six issues are just a mess. I image this is what "Mundanes" (I term I borrow from JD DeLuzio) think all comic books are like. Liefeld took his name off #7-9 (with art by Shawn McManus). I may have dropped the title an issue too soon as #10 was to have featured his origin.

"I used a term long in use, and now more of an older fan's word."

I figured. I had never heard it before, though (and I've never seen an episode of Babylon 5). I also added "fen" to my lexicon.

Today I'm still poking around my "Miscellaneous New Universes" box. The thing about my comic book collection is that, theoretically, I could re-read any of them at any time. Practically, however, I will never get around to re-reading all of them; I have too many to read in the years I have left to me. But every comic in my collection at least has the potential of being re-read. (Honestly, that's not true, but I'm ambivalent about disposing of even the ones I know I will never read again.) 

DEFIANT

I'm sure some of you remember Defiant Comics. Defiant was the company Jim Shooter started after being forced out of Valiant, the company he started with Bob Layton. Probably the best-known (for all the wrong reasons) of Defiant's titles was...

WARRIORS OF PLASM:

Warriors of Plasm was set on a world in which everything was made of this kind of goo, and murder was not necessarily a crime but failure to recycle is. It was written by Shooter, drawn by Dave Lapham, and featured such deathless prose as, "My nodes are tweaking!" The "zero" issue was unique in that it was composed of trading cards designed to be kept in a special binder. (Yes, I still have one.) I don't know of anyone who actually collected the cards, though; most shops just opened the boxes, put them in the binder and sold them as a set.

Issue #1 featured an essay contest to be written into an upcoming Defiant series as a superhero. The contest was open to kids ages 8 to 16, and I was already pushing 30 at the time. (Now that I think of it, the contest itself is now closing in on being 30 years ago.) 

DARK DOMINION

Probably Defiant's second most remembered title (and mu second favorite) was the Ditko-esque Dark Dominion. Dark Dominion was developed by Jim shooter and Steve Ditko, although Ditko himself did not do the art. The series was written by Len Wein.

THE GOOD GUYS:

My personal favorite was The Good Guys, about seven ordinary kids (the real-life winners of the contest announced in Warriors of Plasm #1) who gained their powers at a Rob Liefeld signing at the Mile High Comics Mega-Store. This series was very much like an early Valiant title, and would be unique in today's marketplace. 

Of these three titles, only Warriors of Plasm lasted more than a year (13 monthly issues). 

Still poking around my "Miscellaneous New Universes" box.

COMICS' GREATEST WORLD:

Dark Horse's attempt at universe-building was ambitious: 16 weekly titles set in one of four fictional cities.

ARCADIA:

X

Pit Bulls

Ghost

Monster

GOLDEN CITY:

Rebel

Mecha

Titan

Catalyst: Agents of Change

STEEL HARBOR:

Barb Wire

The Machine

Wolf Gang

Motorhead

CINNABAR FLATS:

Division 13

Hero Zero

King Tiger

Out of the Vortex

Whereas some of these spun off into their own titles and were more successful than others, I read all of these 16 tryouts and not on of them appealed to me. the covers (by Frank Miller, Walt Simonson, George Perez, among others) were more interesting than the comics themselves. Someday, when I'm in the mood, I may go back and read them a second time.

BREAK-THRU:

This is Malibu Comics' line-wide "Ultraverse" crossover. I considered re-reading this one "cold" (it's only two issue and it's by George Perez), but I did that once and don't want to do it again (by this time I've forgotten the stories of all the series leading into it), nor am I in the mood to re-read all the series leading into it.

DEATHMATE:

This was the over-hyped crossover between the Valiant and the Image universes. The prologue led into four issues designated by color rather than number, supposedly designed to be read in any order. Two of the books were produced by Valiant, two by Image; the Valiant ones were on time, the Image ones were not. A mess, start to finish. 

I remember reading the first issues of both Warriors of Plasm and The Good Guys, but I don't remember anything about either one

I actually, liked X, and I think it lasted the longest. King Tiger and Ghost were okay.The rest were either bad, like Barb Wire, or I don't remember them at all, like The Machine.

Breakthru and Deathmate, just typical crossovers as far as I'm concerned.

As for me, yesterday I read Good Night, Hem. The latest offering from Jason. This is three different tales of Ernest Hemingway from Pamplona, Spain in 1925 to Cuba in 1959. There is also a few appearances of Jason's most unusual characters, Athos, the Musketeer. Who is seemingly immortal and still wanders around in is musketeer uniform. This has Jason's typical deadpan humor and matter of factness. I liked this a lot better than his last book, O Josephine.

I also read the first two issues of Transformers Universe, their version of OHOTMU. Just not as detailed, which I appreciate. Most charactersalso have a weakness section which is pretty neat. It will say something along the lines of,"He tends to have many blowouts due to driving over rough terrain." or "He is easily distracted which leads him to easily falling into traps."

THE UNBEATABLE BLUE BARON #1: The latest of Darin Henry's Sitcomics "Binge Books." Don't miss it!

X-MEN LEGENDS #8: I buy this series to find out what I missed by dropping Marvel's X-titles some 25 years years ago. Not much, apparently. Seriously, I read the recap and don't even remember the previous issue. I'm close to violating my second rule of collecting comics, "Don't read what you don't enjoy." The features alternate, but this story has another chapter yet to go. the teen girls are drawn in "manga" style, which is cute.

SUPERMAN '78 #3: Brainiac shrinks Superman into the city of Kandor where he finds his parents, Jor-El and Lara, still alive. That's different. 

FIRE POWER #17: The penultimate chapter of the second storyline.

MY BAD #1: It's funny that I've been reviewing "miscellaneous new universes" lately, and yesterday, AHOY! Comics debuts an "Important New Superhero Universe" written by Mark Russell. If you enjoyed Flintstones or Second Coming  or Billionaire Island or even Fantastic Four: Life Story, you should like this. In lieu of AHOY!'s usual short stories, My Bad's back pages are filled with replica comic book ads, letters pages and the like, including a pseudo-Hostess ad. (Would you believe I've never actually read one of them?) 

Crossover #9

Crossover # 9. I always look forward to the next issue in this series. The plot is proceeding at a good and steady pace. 

Gødland: Last week I was casting about for a comic book series to read that was Kirby-esque, yet not Kirby. Oftentimes when I find myself in such a mood I turn to Erik Larson's Savage Dragon, but his work tends to imitate Kirby but not to emulate him. I think I've found what I was looking for in another Image title (mid-2Ks, not early '90s). 

I started reading Gødland when it first came out, even started a discussion of it here (on the old version of this board, that is). Then someone pointed out that someone on the Gødland board (or Image board or whatever it was) posted a link to the discussion there. I met tom Scioli once, briefly, but I didn't even speak to him. It was at the Pittsburgh ComiCon where Tracy and I first met Rich Lane and his son Patrick (face-to-face, that is). Scioli had a table in Artists' Alley (at least I think it was Scioli; he was sitting at his table), and I was there toward the end of the day. I picked up a copy of 8-Opus, realized I was already about $100 over my limit, and tossed it back on the table. (This was before Gødland.) That was really rude. I still haven't bought 8-Opus; I think I'm waiting until I see him at a con someday so I can apologize for my rudeness. I'm glad he read my review, though, which was probably very similar to what I wrote above. 

UNREAD COMICS:

"Don't buy what you don't read."

I'm still working my way through Gødland, but another thought occurs to me: I have enough unread comics in my collection to keep me busy for the rest of my life. I don't know how long I have left, of course (no one does), but the chances are pretty good. Set the WABAC machine for 199?... My LCS at the time had opened up its legendary backroom for a quarter sale. (From time-to-time on this board I have mentioned a "quarter sale"; there were others but, chances are, this is the one I was referring to.) To give you an example of the kind of deals to be found, the very first thing I chose was the entire run of Denny O'Neil and Neal Adams' Green Lantern/Green Arrow... for 25 cents apiece! The second thing I chose was the recent Kurt Busiek and Alex Ross series Marvels. (I already had it, but the duplicate set cost me a buck.) 

I ended up buying three entire longboxes that first night, filled with comics at a quarter apiece. The sale went on for a week, then they offered memberships at a nominal fee (five bucks, I think) to grant access to the backroom for the rest of the summer. I remember diving into three series for the first time which I acquired that first night for weeks to come: Grant Morrison's Doom Partol, DC's second Star Trek series, and... something else on similar paper stock. Honestly, many of the comics I bought that first night remain unread... but I still hope to read them "someday."

I could (theoretically) stop buying new comics today and I wouldn't miss them. 



Jeff of Earth-J said:

UNREAD COMICS:

"Don't buy what you don't read."

I'm still working my way through Gødland, but another thought occurs to me: I have enough unread comics in my collection to keep me busy for the rest of my life. I don't know how long I have left, of course (no one does), but the chances are pretty good. Set the WABAC machine for 199?... My LCS at the time had opened up its legendary backroom for a quarter sale. (From time-to-time on this board I have mentioned a "quarter sale"; there were others but, chances are, this is the one I was referring to.) To give you an example of the kind of deals to be found, the very first thing I chose was the entire run of Denny O'Neil and Neal Adams' Green Lantern/Green Arrow... for 25 cents apiece! The second thing I chose was the recent Kurt Busiek and Alex Ross series Marvels. (I already had it, but the duplicate set cost me a buck.) 

I ended up buying three entire longboxes that first night, filled with comics at a quarter apiece. The sale went on for a week, then they offered memberships at a nominal fee (five bucks, I think) to grant access to the backroom for the rest of the summer. I remember diving into three series for the first time which I acquired that first night for weeks to come: Grant Morrison's Doom Partol, DC's second Star Trek series, and... something else on similar paper stock. Honestly, many of the comics I bought that first night remain unread... but I still hope to read them "someday."

I could (theoretically) stop buying new comics today and I wouldn't miss them. 

I'm right there with you, Jeff. My unread comics was the inspiration for my old A Comic a Day threads. That fell by the wayside nearly 7 years ago (can't believe its been that long) when I started my new job, and I was working longer hours with a much longer commute time. That project did get me through quite a few longboxes.

Just eye-balling it I have 7-8 longboxes of unread comics. My problem, is that I still add back issues. I still have comics I bought in the early 90s from the old Dallas Fantasy Fair sitting in a box somewhere, unread

With the pandemic and working from home(silver lining!), I've had more time to read some of them, so far this year I've knocked out between 2 or 3 short boxes.

Back in the day Lone Star Comics had warehouse sales out in Arlington, I went one time in the 80s. If memory serves it was 5 bucks to get in, and then the comics were 10 cents a piece. I bought a lot of Bronze Age Marvel there. But nothing like what you got, Jeff!

The first time I worked at my LCS for FCBD, he moved his 50 cent boxes outside and was selling them for 25 cents. I filled up about a long box during the downtime, and he charged me 20 cents each.

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