Comic books

Comic books

I’m a 30-something professional adult with a basement filled with comic books. Silver Age, Bronze Age, Modern Age–I’ve got a bagged and boarded library that guys secretly appreciate and women revile. It’s a hobby that I’ve never felt the need to apologize for or be embarrassed by. Instead, I’ve thrilled to the storytelling heights the medium’s attained since I was a kid. Anyone who’s spent five minutes with Vertigo’s “Fables” or Image’s “Walking Dead” knows full well that there are intelligent, thought-provoking, stories being told in illustrated form.

Fables and Walking Dead aside, I’ve always been more of a super-hero guy. I never outgrew the fantastic worlds of characters like Spider-Man, Batman, Thor, and Green Lantern. My voracious hobby demanded that I establish my own weekly “pull list” at Graham Crackers Comics in the Loop (managed by the legendary Patrick Brower). The list is updated monthly, as new titles are announced; and every Wednesday (or close to it), I have my stack of just-released comics handed to me by one of the friendly faces at the store.

Unfortunately, over the past several months (not coincidentally around the same time I stopped my “STUN” comics podcast), I’ve lost most of my interest in the medium. Books have become way too expensive ($2.99 being the average cover price), stories are getting more convoluted (if not altogether ridiculous), and there are few things on the racks that capture that sense of fun and excitement that sucked me in when I was very young.

I spent the past half hour contemplating dropping my pull list altogether. Perhaps not having a weekly stack would force me to go into the store and find things to get excited about. I wonder if other post-teen comics fans are going through the same considerations. I don’t think I’m done with the hobby. I just think comics and I need a break from one another.

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