South-Central Pennsylvania's Ultra-Hip Pop Culture Mecca™! Since its founding in 1988 by local fans Ned Senft and Bill Wahl, Comix Connection™ has served the Pennsylvania comic-reading community for over 25 years. From its humble beginnings in the old York Book Emporium in downtown York to its current globe-straddling locations in the West Manchester Mall in York and on the Carlisle Pike in Mechanicsburg, Comix Connection™ has always provided the very best in customer service, selection of neat stuff and attention to detail. Visit us today! Questions? Comments? Call or Email us! Of course, all images are © and ™ their respective copyright and trademark holders! No matter where you go, there you are.

Thursday, December 31, 2009

BOMBSHELL ANNOUNCEMENT!


Due to the overwhelming positive feedback we've received from all of you, Comix Connection has decided to EXTEND THE LAST SALE OF THE DECADE through Friday January 1st, Saturday January 2nd, and Sunday January 3rd!

Check this:

ANNOUNCING THE FIRST SALE OF THE NEW DECADE!

Friday January 1st - all back issues in the bins are 70% OFF, and all select items with YELLOW DOTS are also 70% OFF!

Saturday January 2nd - all back issues in the bins are 80% OFF, and all select items with YELLOW DOTS are also 80% OFF!

Sunday January 3rd - all back issues in the bins are 80% OFF, and all select items with YELLOW DOTS are also 80% OFF!


So if you didn't/couldn't get in to Comix Connection yet this week, you now have THREE MORE CHANCES to scoop up some awesome bargains!

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Last Sale of the Decade - Day Four!


Today continues the astonishing Comix Connection Last Sale of the Decade... all back issues in the bins are 70% OFF, and all select items with YELLOW DOTS are also 70% OFF!

It's completely crazy! Come in and see!

Also, bring in canned goods for the Pennsylvania Food Bank and the York Rescue Mission, get any available Green Lantern Blackest Night rings free! One can = one ring! Ten cans = ten rings! 100 cans = 100 rings! Help us fill those barrels, folks! See you in the stores!

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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Last Sale of the Decade - Day Three!


Today continues the Comix Connection Last Sale of the Decade... all back issues in the bins are 60% OFF, and all select items with YELLOW DOTS are also 60% OFF!

It just keeps getting better! Crazy bargains are to be had! Seriously, it's nuts!

Also, bring in canned goods for the Pennsylvania Food Bank and the York Rescue Mission, get any available Green Lantern Blackest Night rings free! One can = one ring! Ten cans = ten rings! 100 cans = 100 rings! Let's fill those barrels, folks! See you in the stores!

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Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Last Sale of the Decade - Day Two!


Today continues the Comix Connection Last Sale of the Decade... all back issues in the bins are 50% OFF, and all select items with YELLOW DOTS are also 50% OFF! It just keeps getting better!

Also, bring in canned goods for the Pennsylvania Food Bank and the York Rescue Mission, get any available Green Lantern Blackest Night rings free! One can = one ring! Ten cans = ten rings! See you in the stores!

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Manager Jared's Weekly Matchup Poll #14

I thought this one would be real fun!


Mirror Master's Abilities: Various powers over mirrors, including the ability to travel through them and trap others within them. He can go through anything with a reflection; a puddle, glass, rain, your eye ball? ect.

Nightcrawler's Abilities: Teleportation, enhanced night vision, superhuman acrobat/gymnast, prehensile tail, ability to stick to walls, blending into shadows,
skilled in martial arts, hand to hand combat and fencing training.



Don't forget to tell us why you voted the way you did in the comments section! Its easy, free, and commitment free!

(Descriptions of characters powers retrieved from Wikipedia.)

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Monday, December 28, 2009

Last Sale of the Decade - Day One!

Today starts the Comix Connection Last Sale of the Decade... all back issues in the bins are 40% OFF, and all select items with YELLOW DOTS are also 40% OFF! Also, bring in canned goods for the Pennsylvania Food Bank and the York Rescue Mission, get any available Green Lantern Blackest Night rings free! One can = one ring! Ten cans = ten rings! See you in the stores!

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Looking Forward to Looking Back, Vol. 12

It was the short story, "A Study in Scarlet", in the 1887 Beeton's Christmas Annual, which first introduced the world to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's fictional character, Sherlock Holmes, a consulting detective renowned for his intellectual prowess and superb use of astute observation, cool logic, deductive reasoning, and forensic knowledge to solve cases which baffled his clients and police alike. Conan Doyle penned 56 short stories and 4 novels of Holmes' exploits, and he presented nearly all of these tales through the accounts of Dr. John H. Watson, a man who came to Holmes' acquaintance first as a roommate only to become Holmes' best friend and his biographer. The popularity of these tales kept Holmes in the detective business for years despite Conan Doyle's efforts to once kill the character off in the 1893 story, "The Final Problem".

The decision to kill Holmes was not at all popular with the reading public and it wasn't an easy one for Conan Doyle, whose wavering feelings about the character lead him to the work out a stage play featuring Holmes in 1897. Conan Doyle was never content with efforts in England to stage the play, but a rising American theatrical producer, Charles Frohman, secured the dramatic rights to bring Holmes to the stage in the States. Frohman passed the manuscript to William Gillette, a leading American actor and something of a playwright himself when it came to developing roles for himself for the stage. Gillette secured Conan Doyle's permission and rewrote the script to heighten the melodrama and made additions to the plot with elements from several of Holmes' previous tales. This play's premiere in New York, on November 6Th 1899 was a triumph as was the play's premiere in England in September 1901. After such positive public reception in England and abroad, Doyle returned to Holmes and Watson to the printed page with the tale, "The Hound of the Baskervilles", which was serialised from 1901-1902. Soon after, Conan Doyle revealed that Holmes was never really dead after that reported fatal plunge to the bottom of the Reichenback Falls in the grip of the villainous Professor Moriarty. Holmes returned proper in the story, "The Adventure of the Empty House". From there Holmes went on to pursue numerous other cases until Conan Doyle published his last Sherlock Holmes story in 1927.

An enduring fascination and affection for Sherlock Holmes has carried on through every medium of entertainment from those original stories then to the play then to motion pictures beginning as early as 1900 in a mere one reel picture. In 1912, the first significant screen adaptations of Holmes began with the first of four British silent films that miraculously still exist!. There was a silent American film versions of Holmes in 1916 not surprisingly starring William Gillette and another in 1922 starring John Barrymore, adapted from Gillette's play. Next, audiences were thrilled by 14 films(two for 20Th Century Fox and twelve for Universal) of Holmes with Basil Rathbone in the role and Nigel Bruce as Dr. Watson. During this time period, Rathbone and Bruce also completed 220 episodes put of 259 episodes of The New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, which ran from October 2, 1939 to July 7, 1947. In 1958, the Hammer film of TheHound of the Baskervilles, introduced Peter Cushing in the role of Holmes. Cushing would reprise the role of Holmes on television for the BBC, American audiences enjoyed 39 half-hour episodes starring Ronald Howard (son of Leslie Howard) as Holmes. My favourite of the television adaptations of Holmes would be the 1984, Granada television series, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, which featured Jeremy Brett as Holmes. I'll attempt no further to list the representations of Holmes on screen as The Guinness Book of World Records continues to list Sherlock Holmes as the "most portrayed movie character" with 75 actors playing the part in over 211 films. A list to which we can add this year's movie, Sherlock Holmes, which arrived in theatres this past Christmas day, directed by Guy Ritchie and featuring Robert Downey, Jr. in the role of Holmes. While I'm not entirely sure this new take on Holmes is exactly my cup of tea, I chose to preoccupy myself instead this weekend with plenty of other interpretations of Holmes, and in doing so revisited a number of comic books featuring Holmes.


There have been many notable comic books to have featured Holmes over the years such as Classics Illustrated adaptations of "The Sign of the Four" from "Three Famous Mysteries" from Classics Illustrated #21(1951) and "A Study in Scarlet" from Classics Illustrated #110(1953). In 1961 and 1962, Dell also published two comics of The New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. However, I have never been fortunate enough to come across any of these early comics. My first memory of Sherlock Holmes in a comic book would be Detective Comics #572, which was a wonderful anniversary issue where Batman and company meet a 135 year old Sherlock Holmes! In this issue, Slam Bradly teams up with Batman and Robin and the Elongated Man to solve a century long mystery and stop Professor Moriarty's descendants from assassinating The Queen of England.. The story ends with Sherlock Homes congratulating Batman on a job well done. Holmes goes on to state his longevity is due to the benefits of a "proper diet, a certain distillation of royal jelly developed in my beekeeping days, and the rarefied atmosphere of Tibet, where I keep my primary residence." Batman tries to light his pipe, Holmes states "Thank you, but I'm afraid the pipe is purely for show these days." As a twelve year old in 1987 this was pretty mind-blowing stuff! I only purchased Detective Comics off and on back then but the cover alone was worth the price of admission! I still find this tale to be quite enjoyable!



This wasn't the first time DC Comics played host to Holmes in their books. Holmes has an appearance of sorts in the Joker #6, as a deranged man believing himself to be Holmes does battle with a Joker who he mistakenly believes to be Professor Moriarty. Also, at the Baltimore Comic-Con this past October, I was lucky enough to find the first and only issue of Sherlock Holmes, a 1975 effort by DC Comics Walter Simonson produced the cover for the issue, and it was written by Denny O’Neil(Batman, Green Lantern/Green Arrow), with art by Philippine illustrator, E.R. Cruz, (Warren’s Eerie) and closed with a short essay entitled, “The Real Sherlock Holmes”, by Allan Asherman.

Other books I have really enjoyed having in my collection over the years are the collections of the comic strip, Sherlock Holmes, from the 1950s which Malibu Graphics, Inc. reprinted years ago. This short-lived comic strip appeared daily and Sunday from 1954-1956, written by radio scriptwriter Edith Meiser and drawn by Frank Giacola. Malibu also published some new and original horror inspired adventures of by writer Martin Powell and artist Seppo Makinen. The first series the team created together was the saga, Scarlet in Gaslight, a tale in which Holmes and Dr. Watson team-up with noted vampire hunter, Dr. Abraham Van Helsing, to of course fight none other than Dracula! The next authorised book the pair did was the story, A Case of Blind Fear which pitted Holmes and Dr. Watson against the Invisible Man. I enjoyed these tales but somehow missed out on Powell's third Holmes project, Return of the Devil. These tales were reprinted though by Moonstone Books, as Sherlock Holmes Mysteries Vol. 1 and Vol. 2. Volume 2 is of particular note as it offers a fourth tale that never saw print, The Loch Ness Horror. Moonstone Books had a bit of fun earlier this year publishing a series teaming up Sherlock Holmes with journalist and horror investigator, Carl Kolchak, the Nightstalker. The 3 issue mini-series is due soon in a collected edition. Sher

With the new movie renewing interest in the character, this year was obviously a ripe time for new comic book projects depicting Holmes. London-based graphic novel publisher SelfMadeHero published The Hound of the Baskervilles by Ian Edginton and illustrated by Ian Culbard. Meanwhile, in the States, Dynamite Entertainment published the new tale, The Trial of Sherlock Holmes, written by Leah Moore and John Reppion with art by Aaron Campbell. The hardcover collection is available now and in addition to the story, the book offers a complete cover gallery, a Sherlock Holmes short story by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and many other exciting bonus materials. I recommend it.

I know there's so many noteworthy Holmes appearances or references in comics I'm not going to get to touch on here, but I'd be remiss not to mention Holmes' role in Rick Veitch's Maximortal series, the Holmes appearance Warren Ellis includes in Planetary #13 (Planetary Volume 3 collected edition) or how Alan Moore works many aspects of Holmes' world into The League of Extraordinary Gentleman Series One (LoEG Volume 1 collected edition). Marvel Comics has had its share of comics featuring Holmes too over the years, such as Marvel Preview #5-6 (January-February 1975), as did many other publishers such as Eternity. With the endurance this good detective seems to possess, I can only see there being many more works to come following Holmes' exploits either new or old.

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Sunday, December 27, 2009

We have a winnah!

Waaay back on December 2nd we started a "TWILIGHT OF THE BLOODSUCKING FREAKS" contest wherein fans would send in their photos showing the best use of the Blood Energy Potion (in the cool IV drip bags) to win a TWENTY DOLLAR COMIX CONNECTION GIFT CERTIFICATE! Well apparently either A) nobody reads this blog, B) you were all too busy Christmas shopping to submit an entry, or C) you were horrified by the contest itself and refrained from entering on moral grounds.

All of you except SAM MILLER of Mechanicsburg, who sent in the following picture:


Thanks, Sam, you are our contest winner! Stop by any time to select your twenty bucks worth of goodies! And to the rest of you: go back to whatever Important Things You Were Doing. Sheesh.

Oh and Sam - don't turn your back on that kitty... it's acquired a taste for BLOOD!

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Saturday, December 26, 2009

Hope your Christmas was a good one!


Sadly, I STILL did not receive my Moller Skycar, but there's always next year, right?

Anyhoo, once you digest all that Christmas Goose and Lutefisk, gear yourself up for our amazing LAST SALE OF THE DECADE that starts Monday, December 28th and runs through New Years Eve Thursday, December 31st!

Here's the info:

1) The PROGRESSIVE YELLOW DOT SALE! All back issues in the bins, plus TONS of select YELLLOW DOT-stickered merchandise will be on sale as follows:

MONDAY, DECEMBER 28th - All bin comics and YELLOW DOT stuff --> 40% OFF!
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 29th - All bin comics and YELLOW DOT stuff --> 50% OFF!
WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 30th - All bin comics and YELLOW DOT stuff --> 60% OFF!
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 31st - All bin comics and YELLOW DOT stuff --> 70% OFF!

2) SUPPORT the Pennsylvania Food Bank and the York Rescue Mission:
FOR EVERY CANNED FOOD ITEM YOU BRING IN TO DONATE TO THESE WORTHY CAUSES, PICK ONE BLACKEST NIGHT PROMOTIONAL RING ABSOLUTELY FREE!

Bring as many cans as you want - bring in ten cans of food, get ten rings from our supply ABSOLUTELY FREE! Help fight hunger here at home and score some cool rings while doing so!
(Some ring colors are not available or in short supply! Free rings to be chosen from the rings we have!)

Let's see how many cans of food we can pile up, OK?

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Friday, December 25, 2009

From all of us to all of you


MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!

Thanks for supporting us throughout the year. We truly appreciate it. Have a great Christmas!

- Ned, Bill and the Comix Connection Counter Monkeys

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Thursday, December 24, 2009

There's still time

To get that last minute gift or cool stocking-stuffer... a Comix Connection GIFT CARD!


A Comix Connection Gift Card (available in any amount from Five to One Million Dollars), makes the perfect last-minute gift idea for the comic book reader in your life. Suitable for all ages and very portable, the Comix Connection Gift Card is great for any occasion! Drop by today and finally complete your Christmas shopping... just ask your Friendly Neighborhood Comix Connection Counter Monkey to fix you up! We're open until 6:00 PM in York and 5:00PM in Mechanicsburg today, so come on in!

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Wednesday, December 23, 2009

There's a first time for everything

As most of you know, next week is a "Skip Week" for comic shops serviced by Diamond Comics Distributors. Because of the way that the Christmas and New Years Day holidays fell on the calendar this year, Diamond Comics will not be sending us any new stuff for the shelves next week. That is why we're having a BIG SALE* from Monday, December 28th through Thursday December 31st. However, there WILL be a couple of new items available that were delivered this week, along with this notice:



The following will be available next Wednesday:
- NEW YEARS EVE PROMO CALENDAR WITH AVENGERS ID CARD
- ORIGINS OF SIEGE FREE RECAP COMIC BOOK
- BLACKEST NIGHT #6

This is the first time in out 22-year history that we have been given a street date notice for comic books! It almost makes us feel like a real business!


*NEXT WEEK'S BIG SALE:

1) The PROGRESSIVE YELLOW DOT SALE! All back issues in the bins, plus TONS of select YELLLOW DOT-stickered merchandise will be on sale as follows:

MONDAY, DECEMBER 28th - All bin comics and YELLOW DOT stuff --> 40% OFF!
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 29th - All bin comics and YELLOW DOT stuff --> 50% OFF!
WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 30th - All bin comics and YELLOW DOT stuff --> 60% OFF!
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 31st - All bin comics and YELLOW DOT stuff --> 70% OFF!

2) SUPPORT the Pennsylvania Food Bank and the York Rescue Mission:
FOR EVERY CANNED FOOD ITEM YOU BRING IN TO DONATE TO THESE WORTHY CAUSES, PICK ONE BLACKEST NIGHT PROMOTIONAL RING ABSOLUTELY FREE!
Bring as many cans as you want - bring in ten cans of food, get ten rings from our supply ABSOLUTELY FREE! Help fight hunger here at home and score some cool rings while doing so!
(Some ring colors are not available or in short supply! Free rings to be chosen from the rings we have!)

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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Manager Jared's Weekly Matchup Poll #14

Battle of the borgs! These characters are made of metal and have guns galore. Who will shoot first and who will take the final blow?

By the way, speaking of war machine, have you seen this?





Don't forget to tell us why you voted the way you did in the comments section! Its easy, free, and commitment free!

(Descriptions of characters powers retrieved from Wikipedia.)

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Monday, December 21, 2009

Looking Forward to Looking Back, Vol. 11

As a collector of old things I am always delighted to see a new publisher arrive on the market making more reprints of classic material available to fans. An even greater treat though is when such a publisher offers not just mere reprints, but when those reprints are presented with the highest regard to preservation, scholarship, and restoration. It is my belief such efforts deserve admiration, so to that end my column this week focuses on The Rosebud Archives and the passion and purpose of its founding partners Rick Marschall and Jonathan Barli.

The Rosebud Archives launched its online initiative this past week, with a blog and store and so much more! With every feature it is ever apparent how great an affection these men possess for the materials they reproduce. The store offers an array of books, portfolios, prints, stationary, and it appears there's much, much more to come! Already the Archives offers work by a variety of fine artists, illustrators, and cartoonists ranging from the very important to the nearly forgotten, such as:

Winsor McCay (1867-1934) - American cartoonist and animator, creator of the comic strip, Little Nemo in Slumberland, and the early cartoon, Gertie the Dinosaur.

George Herriman (1880-1944) - American cartoonist and creator of the comic strip Krazy Kat.

Clare Briggs - (1875-1930) American cartoonist and creator of A. Piker Clerk.

F. von Rezniček (1868-1909) - Austrian painter, caricaturist, and illustrator.

Charles Dana Gibson (1867–1944) - American illustrator, remembered for his creation of The Gibson Girl, an iconic representation of the beautiful and independent American woman at the turn of the 20th Century.

Gluyas Williams (1888-1982) - American cartoonist for Collier's, Century, Life and The New Yorker magazines.

Harrison Cady (1877–1970) - American illustrator and cartoonist of the comic strip, Peter Rabbit.

...and these names are only the beginning!

The array of products featuring the work of classic illustrators and cartoonists is as vast as the Archives founders love of the material they reproduce. The source material for these works come from Rick Marschall's personal collection of graphic materials that spans two centuries of prints, posters, comic strips, books, and other ephemera. Marschall is more than just a super-collector though. Rick Marschall has a served as an editor at Disney Comics and Marvel Comics, where he found Epic Illustrated. He has edited several comic strips and served as founder and editor of two magazines, Nemo and Hogan's Alley, which were dedicated to documenting the history of comic strips. After also writing and editing more than 50 books on numerous everything from the golden age of television to the history of country music, it's no wonder Bostonia Magazine magazine regards Marschall as "America's foremost authority on pop culture." His business partner, Jonathan Barli holds a BFA from the School of Visual Arts and has spent years digitising and restoring comic strips and cartoons, with a focus on collecting and restoring the works of many a “forgotten” cartoonist.

Well, there's nothing more I can tell you of The Rosebud Archives that their beautiful site cannot, so please if you have any interest in this age of art, comic strips, and illustration, take some time to visit their page and acknowledge the work they do. I'm off to look further at their section of prints and daydream about what would look good on my walls!

May you have a good week and a wonderful holiday!

Until next time!

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Sunday, December 20, 2009

Scanimation!

Here's an interesting video I ran across over at Metafilter... early computer animation via Scanimate:



It's amazing how far we've come with computers. You can do much more with your home computer than was dreamed of in 1980.

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Saturday, December 19, 2009

DESPITE THE BLIZZARD OF 2009

UPDATE @1:35PM
NEVER MIND, WE'RE CLOSED! SEE YOU TOMORROW (HOPEFULLY)!



COMIX CONNECTION IS OPEN!


(For now at least. We're not sure how long we'll stay open today, so come on in while you can! Call first!)

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Friday, December 18, 2009

Comix Connection's Rings for Food Drive!

MONDAY, DECEMBER 28th through THURSDAY, DECEMBER 31st


Donate a can of food for the Pennsylvania Food Bank and the York rescue Mission,


GET ANY AVAILABLE BLACKEST NIGHT RING ABSOLUTELY FREE!

Bring in ANY NUMBER CANS OF FOOD, PICK THAT MANY RINGS!

Help us help hungry people right here in Pennsylvania!

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Thursday, December 17, 2009

Estonian Simpsons Intro Sequence Parody!

Behold:


It's just what I said it was. Oh and it's an advertisement for Estonian TV News.

You're welcome.

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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT!

Comix Connection will be holding it's LAST SALE OF THE DECADE from Monday, December 28th through Thursday December 31st 2009!

Both stores will feature:


1) The PROGRESSIVE YELLOW DOT SALE! All back issues in the bins, plus TONS of select YELLLOW DOT-stickered merchandise will be on sale as follows:

MONDAY, DECEMBER 28th - All bin comics and YELLOW DOT stuff --> 40% OFF!
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 29th - All bin comics and YELLOW DOT stuff --> 50% OFF!
WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 30th - All bin comics and YELLOW DOT stuff --> 60% OFF!
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 31st - All bin comics and YELLOW DOT stuff --> 70% OFF!


2) SUPPORT the Pennsylvania Food Bank and the York Rescue Mission:

FOR EVERY CANNED FOOD ITEM YOU BRING IN TO DONATE TO THESE WORTHY CAUSES, PICK ONE BLACKEST NIGHT PROMOTIONAL RING ABSOLUTELY FREE!

Bring as many cans as you want - bring in ten cans of food, get ten rings from our supply ABSOLUTELY FREE! Help fight hunger here at home and score some cool rings while doing so!

(Some ring colors are not available or in short supply! Free rings to be chosen from the rings we have!)



3) Available on Wednesday, December 30th
ABSOLUTELY FREE --> ORIGINS OF SIEGE 32-page comic featuring an ALL-NEW prologue by Brian Michael Bendis, exclusive origin pages and more!
ABSOLUTELY FREE --> Marvel 2010 Calendar!
ABSOLUTELY FREE --> Avengers ID cards!


4) Also available on Wednesday, December 30th, BLACKEST NIGHT #6 goes on sale!

So come help us bid the "Oughts" farewell with a bang for the New Year 2010, and enter the TWENTY TEENS in style!

(All free items and sales items are in limited supply and will be given away or sold while supplies last!)

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Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Manager Jared's Weekly Matchup Poll #13

Battle of the "Blonde Bombshells"! Who would win?

Power Girl's Abilities: Super strength, speed & stamina, multiple extra sensory and vision powers, invulnerability, flight.

Ms Marvel's Abilities: Superhuman strength, speed, stamina, and durability, energy projection and absorption, flight.



Don't forget to tell us why you voted the way you did in the comments section! Its easy, free, and commitment free!

(Descriptions of characters powers retrieved from Wikipedia.)

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Monday, December 14, 2009

Looking Forward to Looking Back Vol 10

Well, it's Monday so I'm back with more goodies classic comic fans can add to their shopping lists for the year to come, and gee if this week isn't a doozy! Comic strip collections are the bulk of my news and the first items up are some collections of note from Fantagraphics Books.

In March, Fantagraphics will answer my prayers (and those of many other fans) with the release of Krazy and Ignatz 1916-1918. This softcover ($24.99) sees Fantagraphics finally going back and reprinting the strips from its beginning.

"When Fantagraphics launched its collection of Krazy Kat Sunday strips back in 2002, we picked up with the 10th and 11th years of the legendary strip (1925-1926) because another publisher had already collected the first nine during the 1980s and 1990s. But now, with that publisher long gone and their Krazy Kat collections fetching record prices (some over $100!) among collectors, it’s time to go back and get every one of these masterpieces back in print — re-scanned and re-retouched from original tearsheets, using 21st century digital resources. Fantagraphics will be collecting these first nine years of Sundays into three volumes comprising three years apiece, starting with the very first Sundays from 1916 through 1918, and incorporating all the added features from the first edition."

Look for this collection in the January Previews!

Word of a new Peanuts collection is always a treat and in April 2010, readers can expect to see The Complete Peanuts: 1975-1976 by Charles M. Schulz. It's incredible how much ground this series has covered so far! This thirteenth volume will be a hardcover for $28.99. If you're like me and wait for the double book slip cased sets, then relax and let your anticipation go until an announcement comes for The Complete Peanuts: 1977-1978, which should follow for a release in September 2010.

Then in May 2010, we can expect to see Prince Valiant Volume 2 1939-1940 by Hal Foster, and there's adventure galore in this new volume!

"Prince Valiant helps his father reclaim his throne in kingdom of Thule, fights alongside King Arthur, and is made a knight of the Round Table in recompense for his bravery and wit. Bored by the peace he helped to create, Val decides to independently pull together the forces to battle the Huns’ descent on Southern Europe. When Val’s army breaches the Huns’ stronghold, however, he discovers that corruption reigns still further west in Rome. Thus Val sets off with Sir Gawain and Tristam of Arthurian legend fame, and the familial kinship of the trio sees them through chivalrous escapades, false imprisonment and daring escapes. By the end of this volume, they go their separate ways, and Val boards a ship to Sicily—yet a storm approaches, throwing him off-course, as adventure follows him everywhere."

This hardcover collection of art shot and restored from the original proof pages will run 112 pages for $29.99.

Also in May, Fantagraphics is releasing the important sequel to their 2007 release of cartoonist Bill Mauldin's Willie & Joe: The WWII Years collection. This new collection, Willie and Joe: Back Home follows the pair as they begin a new struggle: the readjustment to civilian life.

"WWII’s most famous soldiers return from the frontlines. In the summer of 1945, a great tide of battered soldiers began flowing back to the united States from around the globe. Though victorious, these exhausted men were nevertheless too grief-stricken over the loss of comrades, too guilt-ridden that they had survived, and too numbed by trauma to share in the country’s euphoria. Most never saw a ticker-tape parade, or stole a Times Square kiss. All they wanted was to settle back into quiet workaday lives without fear. How tragic that the forces unleashed by World War II made this simple wish impossible.

Willie & Joe: Back Home
brilliantly chronicles the struggles and disillusionments of these early postwar years and, in doing so, tells Bill Mauldin’s own extraordinary story of his journey home to a wife he barely knew and a son he had only seen in pictures. The drawings capture the texture and feel, the warp and woof, of this confusing time: the ubiquitous hats and cigarettes, the domestic rubs, the rising fear of another war, and new conflicts over Civil Rights, civil liberties, and free speech. This second volume of Fantagraphics’ series reprinting Mauldin’s greatest work identifies and restores the dozens of cartoons censored by Mauldin’s syndicate for their attacks on racial segregation and McCarthy-style “witch hunts.” Mauldin pleaded with his syndicate to let him out of his contract so that he could return to the simple quiet life so desired by Willie & Joe. The syndicate refused, so Mauldin did battle, as always, through pen and ink."

This will be a 288 page hardcover of black and white cartoons for $29.99.

In June, readers can expect to see a turn of the 19th century cartoonist get his due, as Fantagraphics releases, The Antic Cartoon Art of T.S. Sullivant. Sullivant (1854-1926) came late to cartooning at the age of 32, but before he was 40, he had helped "alter the face of comedic art in America, ushering it into the 20th century."

"Until Sullivant’s drawings of animals exaggerated facial and anatomical features to the point of caricature, most American cartoonists were more illustrators than cartoonists: they drew realistically and cross-hatched copiously. Sullivant (and Eugene “Zim” Zimmerman) changed that, inaugurating the typical caricatural methods of modern cartooning—big heads, big feet. Sullivant, famed for drawing animals, cave men (and women), rummy Irishmen, and Biblical characters with anachronistic abandon, did most of his cartooning for the old Life humor magazine (1883-1936), with a few years’ detour to a rival, Judge. During that period, Sullivant received the accolade of the age: he was employed briefly by William Randolph Hearst to do political cartoons for the New York Journal American."

This will be the first extensive collection of his drawings and cartoons published until now and offers a healthy sampling of his Life cartoons from his debut in the magazine in 1888 to his last cartoon in 1926, published posthumously; a healthy helping of his 1905-1909 work for Judge; and a short biography and evaluation by compiler R. C. Harvey and an appreciation by Richard Marschall. Color and black-and-white cartoons throughout.

Also for June 2010, I can update an earlier column with information that we'll see the release that month of Four Color Fear: Forgotten Horror Comics of the 1950s, edited by Greg Sadowski and John Benson. This is the first book in the company's partnership with historian Greg Sadowski, offering a massive $29.99 paperback collection of never-before-collected pre-Comics Code horror comics of the 1950s.

It looks like Fantagraphics couldn't let Drawn & Quarterly have all the fun with reprints of Nancy, so in July 2010, the publisher has their own collections of Nancy on the slate but focusing on the work of Nancy's creator, Ernie Bushmiller. Their first collection, Nancy is Happy: Complete Dailies 1942-1945, will reprint four years worth of material and its release with be complimented with the book, How to Read Nancy by Paul Karasik and Mark Newgarden. This new expansion of the classic 1988 essay reads as "the ultimate comic-strip deconstruction/tutorial. Everything that you will ever need to know about reading, making, or under- standing comics can be found in the three panels of a single comic strip published on August 8, 1959: Nancy, by Ernie Bushmiller." This should be an enlightening read for anyone interested in the technique and wonder of comics as an art form.

Fantagraphics also has the book, From Shadow to Light: The Life & Art of Mort Meskin, on the schedule for July. The publisher states:

"From Shadow to Light: The Life and Art of Mort Meskin is a coffee table art book and critical biography of one of the twentieth century’s most influential comic book artists. Meskin’s career spanned both the Golden and Silver ages of comics, from the 1940s to the 1960s. His drawing, chiaroscuro technique, and storytelling are considered by connoisseurs of the form to be among the most sophisticated of his time. His passion for his artwork was equaled by his skill, and the quality of his overall oeuvre blurs the artificial distinction between high and low art. Yet he is known mostly among hard-core aficionados today, eclipsed by many of his peers, some of whom he profoundly influenced. Among Meskin’s fans and admirers are Jim Steranko, Joe Kubert, Alex Toth, Carmine Infantino, Steve Ditko, Jerry Robinson, and Jack Kirby. From Shadow to Light: The Life and Art of Mort Meskin will finally give this neglected artist the recognition he’s due."

August will see two more release of the classic variety with not only another Krazy & Ignatz volume, in Krazy and Ignatz 1919-1921: A Kind, Benevolent and Amiable Brick, but that month also will bring the start of Fantagraphics' efforts to reprint more of the excellent comic strip work of Roy Crane with the release of Buz Sawyer Volume 1: War in the Pacific. In this strip, Crane sought to give readers tales of a more realistic fighting man, John Singer Sawyer, a Navy pilot who fought in the Pacific Theater from 1943 until V-J Day in 1945.

"This book, the first in a series reprinting the Buz Sawyer strip, reprints all of the daily strips published during World War II. Buzz serves aboard an aircraft carrier, flies combat missions against the notorious Japanese Zeros, crash lands behind enemy lines, and is captured by a Japanese submarine."

Considering Mr. Royston Campbell Crane is one of the founding fathers of the adventure strip with the 1920s strip Wash Tubbs, it's great to see Fantagraphics bringing not only Buz Sawyer but also Captain Easy out in hardcovers collections such as they deserve! Hopefully Wash Tubbs collections are on the horizon too! Hint hint!!!

Finally, Drawn & Quarterly has a nice offering I didn't think readers would see anytime soon, but June 2010 should see the release of Walt & Skeezix Book Four: 1927-1928. Glad to see D&Q clearer up some rights issues and continues their long tradition of affectionately reprinting the Gasoline Alley strips.

So how's that for an incredible release schedule? I think I'm going to need more bookcases going into next year!

Well, that's enough for this week! Until next time...

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Sunday, December 13, 2009

Why be an ordinary, run-of-the-mill insulter


when you can be SHAKSPEAREAN, thou roguish base-court hugger-mugger!

Click HERE for the Shakespearean Insulter!

At least that will give you a good head-start while the meat-head who cut you off in the parking lot tries to figure out what you said!

Parting shot:
"Thou art violently carried away from grace."

Taken from: Henry IV, part I

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Saturday, December 12, 2009

All I want for Christmas is

a MILLENNIUM FALCON BED:


More photos HERE!

From the lady who brought us the hamburger bed of course.

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Friday, December 11, 2009

What Women Like Part 2

(As promised, here's Part 2 of the most excellent essay from our own Nicky. Read on! --Bill)


Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 8 - A new comic book series picking up where the television show left off, and perfect for any Joss Wheedon fans who miss their stake-and-slayer fix. Now Buffy's got an army of super-slayers at her disposal, with Xander gleefully living the dream of being Nick Fury and Willow getting witchier than ever, but that just means the Big Bads have to get bigger to keep up with the heroes. It starts off with some familiar faces from the Scoobies' past, and heads off on a wild ride unconstrained by special effects budgets. And of course I'd be remiss if I didn't mention Angel: After the Fall as well; it likewise continues where that television show left off, a welcome relief to anyone disappointed by the cliffhanger cancellation we were left with when the gang charged the apocalypse full speed ahead. And oh, how things have changed...


Catwoman - If you're looking for a superhero story that will convince her that capes and spandex aren't just for the boys, why not start with this recently-revamped series featuring Batman's favorite femme fatale? The cat-burgler moves back to Gotham with a new look and a new outlook, and sets herself up as the whip-wielding protector of her East End neighborhood. The series starts with Catwoman: Dark End of the Street and ends with Catwoman: The Long Road Home with quite a few volumes in between; it ran for 82 awesome issues. But why not start with Catwoman: Selina's Big Score instead? Taking place just prior to Issue #1, this book by Darwyn Cooke has Selina getting back to her criminal roots out of costume and is perfect for anyone who likes heist movies like Ocean's Eleven or the Italian Job -- and doesn't require a jot of prior knowledge about Catwoman, Batman, or the assorted superheroes of the DCU.


Walking Dead - Looking for something for a horror fan? Kirkman's Walking Dead is such a great story that even people who don't like zombie stories like it, and those that do love it! These are old-school shambling zombies in a full-blown apocalypse, and the handful of survivors trying to make it through this dangerous new world for however long they can last! Because no one is safe in Kirkman's zombie-riddled environs, and they don't always end up killed by corpses, either. That won't stop you from getting attached to the characters, though, even if you try; they're who the story is really about, and you can't help but get sucked in and root for them, no matter how doomed they seem.


Now what about the younger crowd? The following section are all books safe for kids and teens, but more than brilliant enough for adults to adore, too. Trust me!


Coraline - Once again, we'll start the list with a Neil Gaiman. This story, brilliantly adapted into comic book form by genius illustrator P. Craig Russell, is about a little girl whose parents move to a new house that proves to have a very interesting door. You might be familiar with it from the recent animated movie; I can guarantee that the book is even better. It's delightfully creepy and mysterious, and all about family and what it means to look at the other side of the fence and wonder if the grass is greener. Sometimes it is; sometimes it's really spiderwebs. This book is just scary and unsettling enough to make kids (and adults) shiver with gleeful fear, but not enough to give traumatic nightmares. Well, probably not... ;)


Courtney Crumrin - And while we're on the subject of creepy, meet Courtney. Her parents also moved to a strange new house, but this one was inhabited by her Uncle (or maybe her great uncle, or her great-great-great uncle) Aloysius. It might be inhabited by some even stranger things, too, although it would be hard to think of something stranger than magical Uncle Aloysius...until Courtney meets the goblin in the woods. She thinks he's less trouble than the mean kids in her new school, but decides that there's no reason why she can't deal with both. Charmingly illustrated in stark black-and-white by Ted Naifeh, the Courtney Crumnrin series is about what it's really like to be a kid -- and what it would really be like to deal with faeries and monsters and parents, oh my.


Good Neighbors: Kin - The first in a series by Holly Black, Good Neighbors is also illustrated by Ted Naifeh and deals with the overlap between modern life and magic. A young girl named Rue Silver has to go into the faerie world to rescue her mother (who was secretly a faerie, by the way) and clear her mortal father's name, because he's been accused of murdering her missing mom. And along the way, she'll also have to save the world. But first she has to figure out if she's a faerie or a human, and decide which world she ought to save. Holly Black already introduced us to modern day faerie and all its beautiful dangers in her prose novels like Tithe and Spiderwick. Now she enters the world of comics and, working with Ted Naifeh's beautiful art, does it fantastically.


Gunnerkrigg Court - Know any fans of Harry Potter? Here's another story of a magical school, although the magic in this case is super-weird-science; this school is all about scifi technology, and they try to keep all the magic relegated to the mysterious forest outside. A girl named Annie starts school and starts to bridge that gap, with all sorts of amazing adventures along with way with her friends Kat (junior mad scientist), Robot (a Robot), Reynardine (a wolf-god in stuffed animal form), and Shadow 2 (a shadow). It started out online at http://www.gunnerkrigg.com, but is now being printed in story-arc collections.


Bone - No list would be complete without Jeff Smith's masterpiece Bone, a story that centers around the Bone family: three cartoony brothers who stumble into a magical world called the Valley, a place infested with rat creatures, dragons, magical princesses, a grandmother who could send the big bad wolf into a new line of work with one right hook, and the Lord of Locusts who wants to consume the valley if the Bones can't stop him. Get the whole story in the massive Phonebook, or in the new color editions. This is what would happen if Carl Barks and Tolkien wrote a book together, and it's beautiful.

And of course, there are comic book adaptations of quite a few novels, too. There's Dark Tower and The Stand from Steven King, Ender's Game and Red Prophet by Orson Scott Card, Mercy Thompson by Patricia Briggs, Anita Blake by Laurell K. Hamilton, Magician: Apprentice by Raymond E. Feist, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, and the brand new retelling of L. Frank Baum's Wizard of Oz, among many others.

So come on in and take a look at the varied selection of comics around, because this list is just the tip of the iceberg. We have most of these in stock at any given moment, but if we're sold out of any, we'll be only too happy to order you a copy! You have but to ask. And if she's reading comics, too, she can't complain about how many you buy. ;)

To the girls: Agree with these recommendations? Disagree? I leave any of your favorites off the list? Drop us a word in the Comments section and tell us all about it, because I'm certainly not the only one always looking for awesome new comics to read!

~Nicky

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Thursday, December 10, 2009

What Women Like Part 1


(Counter Monkey Extraordinaire Nicky sent along this excellent essay... read on! I had to break it into two parts because it is so awesome. Part 2 will be up tomorrow. Enjoy! --Bill)

Before we start, I better make the disclaimer that I read comics like a boy. So none of you have to restrain yourselves from geeking out about Blackest Night or Nation-X in front of me. And yes, I am disappointed that the Rings are all going to be too big for my fingers, but I'm going to collect them anyway.

That said, I am in fact a girl. And one of the lamentations I hear a lot is guys wishing that their girlfriends, wives, gal-pals, daughters, sisters, moms, etc., could come to appreciate comic books as much as they do (if you're lucky enough to know a lady comic book fan, pop down to the comments and tell us what her favorite reads are! If you're even luckier and you are a lady who likes comics, then tell us yours!) but she just doesn't seem interested? Well you're in luck, because comic books aren't a genre, they're a medium. Any story can be told in comics...even "girly" stories. After all, if even Twilight can become a comic book...really, there's no limit, right?

So why not add a comic to your sweetie's holiday pile? You can even assure her that it's been recommended by an actual girl if you think it'll make her more inspired to read it -- go ahead, use my name, I'll vouch for you. ;)

Here's some of my favorites:


Sandman - Neil Gaiman's quintessential epic of life, death, love, dreams, and pretty much everything in between. Sandman was an exquisite series and if you haven't read it yet, you're missing out on one of the most amazing events in comic book history. It's a true epic, of gods and men and monsters and all things in between, and speaking just for myself it was the comic book that convinced me that there was more to the world of comics than superheroes and spandex. Lots more -- in fact, the list is practically Endless.


Stardust - While we're on the subject of Neil Gaiman, grab Stardust, too. You may have seen the movie recently; the graphic novel, which was illustrated by Charles Vess, is even more beautiful. This one might actually be the best book for an especially comics-leery individual; it's more like an illustrated novel, and has even been published in a strictly prose version (although why anyone would buy the copy that doesn't have Vess's beautiful paintings when there's a choice in the matter, I can't possibly imagine). It's a beautiful fairy tale, romantic without being sappy, told with Gaiman's customary eloquence.


Whiteout - This one isn't a movie yet, but it soon will be. By Greg Rucka and Steve Lieber, this comic (and its sequel, Melt) focuses on U.S. Marshall Carrie Stetko, one of the few faces of law and order in the sprawling white wilderness of Antarctica. There's a murder on the Ice, and Carrie has to solve it, along with her own frozen past, before everyone freezes to death. And never has so much white space looked so incredible as under the crazy ink stylings of Lieber. Most artists would have cheered and enjoyed the chance to cop-out and drop their character onto empty white space with the excuse of "but it's Antarctica, all there is is snow!" (or is that just me?) but Lieber gives texture enough to the deadly Ice that you can feel the chill. This story takes place on earth, but the Ice is an earth so alien, it might as well be another planet. And if you want stranger than that, how often do you get a Crime Buddy Story with two female leads?


Fables - This story starts with Bigby Wolf of "Three Little Pigs" fame investigating the murder of Snow White's sister in a small subsection of New York City called Fabletown, a neighborhood where all the fairy tale characters out of stories live side-by-side with an unsuspecting modern world. Fables has something for everyone; it has mystery stories, comedies, political intrigues, romances, heists, Tolkienien-level war epics, civil rights uprisings, and even just recently released its first prose novel, Peter and Max, a story about the Pied Piper. You'll find lots of familiar faces in this book, from the frog prince janitor to Cinderella the super-spy. (Hint: if there's trouble, look for Jack first. There's more to him than magic bean scams.)


Castle Waiting - If you like fairy tales, here's a great new take. Linda Medley writes and draws a beautiful story about the motley crew that took up residence in Sleeping Beauty's castle after she went off to live Happily Ever Whatever with her prince. Now the castle's a sanctuary for people coming from all over this great big fairytale world, be they Dwarves, Giants, Storks, Circusfolk, Nuns, or young women running away from a not-so-happily-ever. It's a story about people every bit as real and weird as those you could meet on the street today, although granted most of the people you're going to meet in the "real" world don't have green-skinned babies or dwarvish cousins. This is a story about being a hero in your own home -- or your own castle. It's beautiful and real and fantastical, and the perfect book to prove to someone that comics aren't all Biff! Bam! Pow! all the time.


Crossing Midnight - This is a fantasy/horror story by Mike Carey about two siblings in present day Japan who get caught up in the rich mythology of their homeland's history. It doesn't really go well for them, but that's what makes it a great read for us, right? One twin was born before midnight, the other after, and this gap leads them into a terrifying supernatural world that has very different destinies in mind for the brother and sister and a lot of it has to do with knives. I can't decide which is more fascinating, actually: the exquisitely-realized spiritual world, or the exactingly-researched one of modern day Japan. This book is so compelling you won't even realize you're learning things along the way!


Lucifer - While we're on Mike Carey, let's mention this spin-off series from Sandman -- every bit as grand as the original. The Devil was just a bit player in Dream's saga, but everyone knows he's really a star, and here he gets his chance to shine. The series starts when an angel on business from Above comes to Lucifer's new nightclub in LA with a job that Heaven wants their fallen adversary to do for them. Lucifer likes their price, and soon that one simple job has all of reality hanging in the balance and the only one who can save the day is -- the Devil? Oh, we're in trouble now... Carey crafts a mythology more satisfying than Milton's Paradise Lost in this epic tale of Heaven, Hell, and the one guy who no longer wants anything to do with either of them: Lucifer himself. (And no, you don't need to have read Sandman first to figure it out.) And my mother and best friend would both like to make sure that I point out that Lucifer is also "easy on the eyes." So, enjoy that.


Strangers in Paradise - Getting a little more down to earth, how about this series by Terry Moore? It's set in the real world with real people and has more drama packed into its pages than most television shows can hope to claim. Not only that, but its primary subject matter is...drumroll...romantic! Not being what one might call a fan of "romance" stories, the only reason I picked it up, skeptically, is because it was recommended by Neil Gaiman. And it was a long day, and I was bored. Well thank goodness I did, because it blew me away. (Who knew romance could actually be entertaining enough to carry a plot?) Throw in a sprinkling of the American Yakuza, a dash of high school angst, cheating husbands, the FBI, and rock star singers, wrap it all up in family drama and showcase it with some of the most delightful artwork I've ever had the pleasure to drool over, and you've got a recipe for greatness.

(To be continued tomorrow...)

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