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Showing Off the Shelves: Kotobukiya X-Men ’92

Earlier in the year, I discovered the Kotobukiya line of X-Men ’92 figures/models/statues.Where I’d originally only intended to get Rogue and Gambit, that quickly expanded until finally, I wound up with the entire line (that I’m presently aware of)!

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Professor X and Phoenix/Jean Grey were the only figures to come as single-characters, all the rest came in packs of 2. Jubilee came with Wolverine, and Storm came with Bishop.

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Gambit and Rogue came together, which is what set me off on this entire line. Cyclops and Beast make up the final pair.

The Bishop/Storm set was the most expensive for me, and I paid more than I’d have preferred–still a bit of buyer’s remorse there–but after missing one heckuva sale price at Black Friday, I decided to splurge and order them from BigBadToyStore just to HAVE them and not have to worry about them becoming even MORE extremely-exspensive if they’re "out of print" or such.

Despite that/leaving the cost off to the side…I really dig the set, and would certainly prefer to see more releases for it.

Most immediately, a "regular" Jean Grey, perhaps paired with a Morph (possibly with an "extra" head for "Dark Morph"); and then of course, some villains.

Magneto and Mr. Sinister would be definites for me, along with Apocalypse, perhaps Mystique, Blob, Pyro, and Avalanche. Perhaps swap Juggernaut for Mr. Sinister if we’d keep to the first season, though Jean in her Phoenix form is from beyond the 2nd season, even, so…yeah.

It’d even be great to see a sentinel, perhaps…though for the price of these-sized figures, I hate to consider what a Sentinel would cost from Kotobukiya!

Despite wanting more…this present set pretty much perfectly fits on two "floating" wall shelves I bought on Amazon; it wasn’t until I was mounting the shelves to the wall that I realized they’d be good for these figures.

I may look into getting some more of these shelves in the new year when I do some re-arranging of the basement space; I have a number of ideas there (plus thoughts toward some alternate shelving as most of my shelves have bowed significantly, and I reconfigure the overall space a bit to accommodate the last couple of years).

Time will definitely tell, though…as always!

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80th Anniversary Batman Imaginext Singles

After about 4 weeks and more than two-dozen Target visits, I had finally managed to get the Neca Bebop and Rocksteady two-pack a few weeks back. I feel like that was ONE OF the, if not THE most hassle I’ve ever had finding a particular toy at non-scalper prices. I’m not after first-editions, they aren’t SDCC-exclusives, etc.

ANYWAY.

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I’d found out about a series of Imaginext Batman figures for the character’s 80th anniversary (WHY is there virtually NOTHING for Superman, but EVERYTHING for BATMAN?!?).

A few days after learning of their existence, I opted to go ahead and check for them at the local Walmart.

Which ONLY had 2 of the figures–the Green Lantern one and the Justice one.

Of course, the one I most wanted was the Knightquest one!

For the price, I went ahead and got the two, figuring I’d regret it later if I didn’t.

I also decided to visit a second Walmart since the one I was at first ALSO did NOT have the only other thing I’d gone in for (treating the figures as a secondary objective).

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The second Walmart had all 5, so I was able to get the 3 I was unable to at the first, and have what I believe is the complete set. (IF there are more than 5 in the series, I am blissfully unaware!).

And I was simply amazed at the fact of being able to go out–ONE evening, a mere TWO visits to a store–and actually being able to find what I was looking for!

EXTREMELY refreshing after the frustration and discouragement trying to get the Bebop and Rocksteady pack!

I am NOT a "thrill of the hunt" kinda person for most things…especially when they’re ARTIFICIALLY-LIMITED and such or seem like some one-off. With toys–figures, statues, whatever–if it’s cool, if it’s desirable such that I want one…I just want the publisher to LET ME give them my money and be done.

Anyway…these remind me a bit of HotWheels in there being this mini-set and there being several figures, with a cardback featuring some cover or other piece of art that the figure represents.

But for me personally…these are much more appealing, as they can be opened and displayed with other small figures without having to worry about them rolling off a shelf or such.

If I’d gone for only 2 or 3 of these, I’d probably leave out the Green Lantern and Zur-En-Arr ones and possibly the Justice one. But not being terribly expensive, and not being able to change the past, I’m happy to have all 5.

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Deluxe Crisis Catch-Up

I splurged a bit recently to play catch-up on some Crisis stuff…partly inspired by the CW‘s "Arrow-verse" crossover event of 2019-2020.

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I’d snagged the Crisis on Infinite Earths Deluxe Edition some years back, highly impressed with its sheer size and (relatively) cheap price FOR its size. Looks like that was specifically 2015, and I’d bought it as a "birthday present" to myself at the time.

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But then I’d happened across a copy of the Crisis on Infinite Earths Companion, vol. 1 for 50% off. And then with some disappointment over (lack of) good Black Friday sales and such, I ended up splurging on the 2nd and 3rd COIE Companion volumes.

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They make quite a great-looking set, at least to my eye! And I much Much MUCH prefer volumes like these to a single-volume "omnibus"! Imagine having all 3 Companion volumes as a single book! Sure, it might be the price of only 2 of the volumes. But these are books that I’ll actually be able to READ without breaking my wrists!

Plus, I also won’t have to worry about these self-destructing on a bookshelf under their own weight!

Now, the next thing to investigate is some Crisis on Multiple Earths hardcovers. I’m not sure off the top of my head how many paperbacks there are/were under that title…I think 6-7. And I’d imagine those could easily fit into 3 hardback volumes that would sure be pretty sitting next to these!

Time will tell, though!

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Spawnquest #6: The First Hundred…Completed!

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After a 7-week dry-spell (and about 10 weeks since my last "Spawnquest" post) I have another update as 2019 draws to a close!

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Back in November, I’d snagged these 5 issues of Spawn at Kenmore Komics after a disappointing Akron Comicon.

#s 70, 74, 81, 92, and 96. At $4 each, that’s no worse than buying issues of any modern/current comic series. And as such, it feels a lot easier to buy numerous issues at once!

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Again, it was a good 7 weeks or so of nothing, after that, and I’d somewhat sort of given up for the time-being.

And then at at the Carol & John’s annual Christmas party (seemed just a couple weeks after their Black Friday event!) I talked myself into stopping out, where they actually had a box of Spawn issues, all 50%-off! Now, I might regret it in the near future, but I did not buy everything they had; I’ve been spending a LOT of money lately on all sorts of stuff and justifying the purchases to myself in and of themselves…but they add up.

So I opted to stick with (almost certainly) wrapping up the year with just plugging holes to #100.

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So I snagged #s 68, 71, 72, 77, 88, 93-95, and 97-100.

$4-6ish isn’t bad on a per-issue basis here and there; but add up FAST when multiples are involved.

Issues 93, 95, 98, and 99 were tagged $8 which is rather steep, even though that’s "only" the price of TWO random modern 2019-comics. But half off brought them down to $4.

#100 was $12, so came down to $6…no worse than an opening or closing HoX/PoX chapter, a Last Knight on Earth chapter, or a Doomsday Clock opening/closing issue.

But for the longest time, I’d only broken the $10 barrier once or twice, so $12 would be stretching without the discount.

$15 would be all the more a stretch–such as for #s 77 & 97. But 50% off brought those down to $7.50 which isn’t quite 2 modern issues. But in their favor was also the fact of being amongst some $4 ($2 with the discount) issues, AND that collectively the purchase would fill in the gaps and let me end 2019 with about half of the series’ entire run.

#s 1-100 and #s 257-304…plus I know I have some of the issues from the Endgame arc around #185ish-190-something.

All in all, I’m pretty certain this "Spawnquest" thing is going to be relatively high on my 2020 "goals" along with Marvel‘s 2099 line from the early-mid 1990s and a few other things. But I’ll likely detail–or have detailed–that train of thought in another post!

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Vexed by Variants AGAIN! The Weekly Haul: Week of December 26, 2019

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I am so sick and tired of VARIANTS! And of course, this time it’s gonna be all the MORE memorable because it’s with an event, it’s the final week of the year, etc…it’s not "just" a random week during the year.

It’s ALSO reminding me to STOP GIVING MARVEL A CHANCE.

So, let’s get into it…the final week of the year for new comics…albeit, I have no NEW-new comics, due to the week between Christmas and New Year being a small week of remnants and all that.

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So having ventured to the comic shop and soundly deciding AGAINST Marvel‘s Incoming ($9.99 and they couldn’t even squarebind the thing to go on a shelf?!?) I noticed the 2099 Omega issue from last week that no one seemed to have had.

And there next to it was the latest issue of The Amazing Spider-Man…picking that up to look at, I saw a checklist for the whole event, listing it as the last ASM issue involved.

Ok, I’ve got nothing else for the week…FINE. Let’s see what other issues are available. 33…34…is that 35? Pull out a couple copies…sure enough, yeah. 35…cool. All 4 issues. Plus the Omega issue, as I had bought the Alpha issue a few weeks ago.

Well…let’s see if they have the Doom issue? Yup. Spider-Man? Yup. Ok…what about Punisher? There it was. Ghost Rider? There as well. Hmm…Fantastic Four? Check. Ok…Conan? Sure enough…there. What was missing? Venom. Oh, look…there it was.

I was gonna wait for a collected volume, but with not having any luck finding any reference to an event collected volume online after all, and not having other stuff for the week…AND EVERY ISSUE OF THE EVENT AVAILABLE (to buy all at once, in-person, one place, one purchase, INSTANT GRATIFICATION)…and the shop was about to close for the night.

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I get home, pretty pleased with my buy, despite it being a clear exception to my intent as recently as earlier in the day.

Amazing Spider-Man #34 is a VARIANT!

I grabbed issues in a hurry. Looking at the TITLE, looking at the ISSUE NUMBER. Marvel HAD–to my knowledge–been putting the word "VARIANT" in the box with the Marvel logo and issue number. So having looked at that box on all the issues, I figured I was good. No variants. Just the standard, regular, basic, non-variant covers.

Because of the [bleep]ing THEME, apparently the thing was put ELSEWHERE on the darned cover, where even though I was looking for it with the issue number and Marvel logo, I failed to see it was ELSEWHERE.

Because I was in a rush, and not studying the covers in their entirety and all that. Just taking logos and numbers at face value.

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And thus even the random, against-my-better-judgement satisfaction of snagging an ENTIRE EVENT all at once, is tarnished by stupid frustration.

And that is NOT what comics should be.

To the notion of "it’s just a cover," I argue that IF it’s JUST a cover, then STOP WITH THE [bleep]ing VARIANTS! Let the cover BE THE cover!

I should NOT HAVE TO STUDY every part of EVERY cover of EVERY ISSUE that I buy, hunt for indicia in the issue, spoil the contents of the issue itself for other indication, pull up web pages on my phone, have memorized covers before going to the store just to AVOID VARIANTS.

When I am specifically, ACTIVELY, consciously TRYING TO AVOID variants and I STILL CANNOT avoid them all…there are too [bleep]ing many of the things!

It’s NOT the comic shop’s fault…it’s the publisher.

And my feeling my own stupidity at this.

I dropped all Valiant comics in the summer of 2015 over one 4-issue stunt. And I did the same with Boom Studios in January 2016 over ONE ISSUE’s variants.

Marvel is in rarified air, and by rights, I really SHOULD just drop them entirely, on the principle.

This’ll certainly teach ME to not do any impulse-buys or quantity-buys from Marvel for sure. And reminds me to just stick with BACK ISSUES from the BARGAIN BINS. Stuff I actually KNOW and/or that is inconsequential at a price point up to 90% cheaper than a single new issue.

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Redeeming Black Friday: The Haul

This year’s Black Friday was particularly frustrating and discouraging due to a number of factors. I feel most justified in my disappointment that after getting the newest Big Bang Theory season on DVD from Best Buy Online the last 6-7 years, this year there was no such deal.

In the end, for the first time in about a decade, I did not buy anything from Best Buy (online or otherwise) on/around Black Friday. For that matter, the only movie I remember buying was Bumblebee because it was a combo pack with digital for about the price of one weekend’s Redbox rental. I did buy my first Keurig for about 1/3 off–not bad, but not exactly grandiose or living up to the general "hype" of Black Friday as some wallet-melting sale-day. 

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So where I’d not been sure if I was going to go to the big Black Friday event at Carol & John’s in Cleveland–after all, I remembered last year‘s crowd and wasn’t planning on spending much, so the odds of winning any of the raffles–especially one of the Marvels Platinum Edition hardcovers–seemed highly counter to being worth braving the crowds.

But I was disappointed and discouraged from the day, and figured it’d do my mind some good to at least get out and get a few comics–my sort of "retail therapy." Plus, I had a bit of "FOMO" wondering if there’d be a treasure-trove of Spawn issues I could get on the cheap.

And it eventually occurred to me that the sale was ongoing–and figured I could "cheat" a bit and if I got there early, have more time in a quieter space to dig through boxes of comics, knowing I wouldn’t be checking out until the sale was in effect.

Little did I realize that I’d lose track of the time, and despite not finding one single issue of Spawn to buy, I’d more than meet the minimum to further halve the cost of the comics I was buying. $1 each, or 100+ for 50 cents each. Functionally, at 50, it would be the same price whether I bought 50 issues or 100 issues…so why stop AT 50?

And then after managing to get my precariously-balanced stack of comics to the checkout and adding several supplies and eventually a sticker to goose my final price to one more raffle ticket, I got stuff out to the car and returned for the first raffle.

Where I didn’t win anything.

So I wandered around the store awhile and ended up buying a book and a couple current single issues. Paid for those, got two more raffle tickets, and then read outside for a bit until the second raffle.

Where I actually won one of the "bonus" prizes–a slipcover/box set of DC’s Greatest Hits! I took my newest purchase and my prize out to the car, and listened to an audiobook for a bit. Then headed back in for the next raffle…and won a graphic novel from a curated selection. I chose the Joker tpb collecting the ’70s Joker series. I’d had my eye on the book for years (thinking as I type, it has the 2012-2016 DC logo, so I must’ve had my eye on the book since at least as far back as 2016 pre-Rebirth!).

Having not had dinner (I hadn’t actually planned to stay past the first raffle) by going-on-9pm it was definitely time to get some dinner, so I walked to Subway a few stores down in the plaza and got a sandwich that I took and dropped off in my car before heading back over for the next raffle–where I did not win anything.

Back out to my car, ate half my sandwich and listened to an audiobook, and realized I was exhausted and with the huge crowd and seeing people seemingly spending way more than me and having my odds of winning ANYthing falling further, it was time to get going.

BUT.

But being "only" about 15 minutes from the next drawing, why not go back in for one last one before getting the heck outta Dodge?

Surprisingly, I then ran into an old coworker from a job I had a couple years ago; so got to chat and catch up a bit. It was such a shock and pleasant surprise! That made it worth having stayed–having gone back in–one last time.

And then as we and others noticed/commented that no one had chosen either of the Marvels books (several of the other large prizes had been snapped up) I heard my name.

After verifying that it was indeed my name and that it was indeed for one of the large prizes…I chose the Marvels Platinum Edition.

All the more knowing there was a 3-prize-cap for the evening (and I’d definitely hit my 3!), it was a good time to call it a night.

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I’ve won occasional prizes in drawings here and there for various things. Even at comic shops–I’d won a $20 credit a number of years ago at Kenmore, and a $25 credit at Comic Heaven back in Fall 2016. But these three items–the Marvels edition, the DC’s Greatest Hits, and the Joker volume–make up the largest/most expensive I’ve ever won.

And absolutely "redeemed" Black Friday for me.

The comics I got were already more or less worthwhile for having gone out; but these made it more than worth having gone out–especially the Marvels book. (And, extra added bonus? The digital code that supposedly expired several years ago redeemed so I got the digital copy along with the physical…the FULL PACKAGE even though the book came out in 2013 or 2014!)


While the raffle prizes moooooore than made the evening for me…I also scored over 100 (what worked out to be) 50-cent comics, making quite the ’90s-riffic haul.

The crux of the sale was a room full of longboxes of $1 comics. $1 each…or 100+ for 50 cents each. 50 comics for $50, or 100 comics for $50. At 50, it just makes sense to get another 50!

And as my 2019 blogging has primarily been showing off the various hauls…why not show off the Black Friday haul as well?

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So, after determining no Spawn (that I could see, anyway), I kinda took a haphazard approach to my browsing. Top of my pile–several Wolverine issues. As far as I know, all are duplicates…making these very much "convenience copies." 48-50 to get TO #50 with that classic die-cut cover. And incidentally, a "sequel" to the classic BWS Weapon X serial that ran in Marvel Comics Presents #s 73-84 or so. And then the "classic" #104 where we found out Onslaught’s tie to the events of Fatal Attractions. And while I may very well never get to it (especially with my lack of blogging the last couple years) I’m willing to grab convenience copies for potential The ’90s Revisited coverage!

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Grabbed a handful of old Image issues (and 1 Eternity with Zen). And yeah, that was two copies of Youngblood #1. Because hey, get to show off both covers. BUT this being a variant DONE RIGHT: it’s a flipbook! BOTH covers on one issue. You only have to buy multiple copies of the issue if you want to DISPLAY both sides!

And both the Prophet and Knightmare issues sport nice, shiny "chromium" covers! I’m always on the lookout for more chromium in the wild. Turned out I already had the Prophet issue, but Knightmare is a new addition to my chromium covers collection!

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The Tim Drake Robin is one of my favorite characters, so for sheer nostalgia, snagged these. The ongoing Robin #1 is fairly iconic–at least to me. And I’m NOT actually sure offhand if I have any of the Robin II: The Joker’s WIld collector sets before this. I have the various single issues, and even a slipcase of the series with all covers (holograms). These remind me a lot of the Robin III: Cry of the Huntress bagged editions, which is part of what casts these into doubt in my mind as to whether I already had them or not…making them all the more cool to have/find!

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Snagged copies of several of the Superman #1 issues largely for the nostalgia and convenience. Ditto for the Action 600, Superman 100, and Adventures of Superman 505 (this latter is one of my all-time favorite Superman covers!) (THOUGH apparently it wasn’t one of my top 10 when I did a post on such covers 6 1/2 years ago. Top 11, or I think of Man of Tomorrow #1 moreso; the two are remarkably similar at a glance!)

And Blackhawk because hey, why not?

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A handful of Batman issues–largely nostalgia, and convenience-copies with Tom Lyle art. And for the heckuvit, Batman #500 for the sake of having it (yet again). Meanwhile, Batman: Shadow of the Bat #25 is one of my favorite covers from that series and the whole KnightQuest thing. Especially for basically having a really cool-looking cover celebrating 25 issues, while serving the ongoing overall story, and the "gimmick" being the silver color not usually found on comics.

Resurrection Man #1 for the "hologram" thing; and Phantom Stranger because I’m not actually sure I had the issue!

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Snagged a bunch of DC One Million tie-in #1,000,000 issues. I had a bunch already and couldn’t find a reference in my phone of which ones (ugh!) so I bought one of each that I could!  black_friday_haul_11292019hStill working on the set overall…but I’m pretty close to having the full DC One Million event in single issues!

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A new convenience-copy of the The Kingdom "fifth-week event" (I believe) from back in the day. Pretty sure this was where we got Hypertime; though pretty sure as well we’re a couple of such things further on now. Hypermulticrisisverses?

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I am STILL after all these years waiting for a SINGLE VOLUME collection of the Thy Kingdom Come saga. Maybe I’ll have to get a copy of the issues bound for that to happen?

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This makes for a good start on a second copy of the saga to (maybe) eventually get bound. Or for a convenience-copy re-read someday before I get my accumulation properly sorted.

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Snagged a bunch of Astonishing X-Men issues since it was most of the run!

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Highly glad I hadn’t tried to "catch up" on the single issues before, given the way of the X stuff the last couple years and finite-ness of the particular run, and here getting 8 issues for the cover price of 1!

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I picked up some X-Force stuff. Pretty sure I have all 5 cards’ editions, but snagged dupes of 4 of them; and the first 3 (of I believe 4) issues of a mini-series.

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Grabbed some 2099 #1s for the nostalgia, convenience, and just liking the pretty foil. Ditto on the Namor issue. And for cheap copies of gimmicky covers, grabbed the Punisher: War Zone issue. Also grabbed a couple further issues of Namor for the story beyond the shiny cover; and the Machine Man/Bastion annual as a giant-sized issue. And I may eventually accumulate a set of these team-up annuals yet.

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Grabbed a few Spider-Man issues for interesting covers and such; stuff that caught my attention in a "I might enjoy reading that or re-reading it" kinda way. The X-Men Unlimited #2 always catches my attention. And the Marvel Spotlight issue for Uncanny X-Men hitting 500 issues looks interesting.

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Found a lot of X-Men stuff. I tend to snag #40 when I come across it…it’s one of my all-time favorite/most memorable issues from childhood. X-Men: Alpha is another favorite (plus it’s shiny!). X-Men: Prime is similar, and pretty. And there’s also some serious nostalgia for me on the two main Onslaught issues, so snagging a pair together is quite cool.

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Then I’m starting to build up my Marvel Comics Presents collection; so with some recent purchases, I think these two extended my collection 2 issues further into the run from #1. And I have visions of destroying X-Men #1 to use the cover as a poster to hang. And the inside cover is also a poster-image…so I’ll have to destroy at least two copies. And if I can do that to 50-cent copies rather than tracking the issue down for $4-6, all the better!

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And thanks to some then-VERY-recent discussion of the issue and the variants and being able to get all 5 (6 total) I went for it. Here’s the comparison of the "deluxe" edition fully opened up compared to the 4 single-panel covers laid out.


Over 120 issues. It’s amazing how quickly they can pile up and add up. Plenty of random "junk" in there, but it was also a bit of "retail therapy" and all. But does continue to contribute to me eventually hitting a point where it’ll just make full financial sense to get my accumulation organized so that I won’t even be interested in buying "convenience copies" of anything!

THAT said…if I get to them, I’ve got a couple more large bargain-bin hauls to potentially show off…whether I get to that before the end of the year remains to be seen!

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30 Years: My First-Ever Collected Volume/Graphic Novel

I don’t think it was Christmas day exactly, but it was for Christmas that a childhood friend gave me The Greatest Superman Stories Ever Told; as much from him as his parents, I believe.

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That was Christmas 1989, as I recall–I do not believe it was the FIRST Christmas I was interested in comics, but the second–after Mom had bought me some comics throughout 1989, with my having "gotten by" on comics Grandpa had brought for me in 1988.

30 years later, I still have this book. Even though somewhere I have a newer copy in better condition, I’ve opted to keep my original copy on the shelf in my main collection.

Some of the key Superman stories were in this book and this was how I first read them. From the original Action Comics #1 story, to For the Man Who Has Everything and loads in-between…even up to Superman #2 in the Byrne "reboot era." That one stuck out as an odd piece to me at the time, not really fitting with the other stories, and in retrospect I would have thought perhaps something else like the Man of Steel #3 (One Night in Gotham City) might have fit better, to have "representation" from the then-young reboot. (With a 1987 copyright date, I believe this volume predates the Return to Krypton in Superman #18, as well as the Supergirl Saga and so on…likely even Action Comics #600).

This was ALSO my first-ever collected volume, first-ever "graphic novel," first-ever comic BOOK. Despite the hundreds of volumes in my library now this one holds a special place as THE first in my collection, going back to my earliest days being into comics (and pre-dating my first "lapse" from comics).

As it was a Christmas gift…I felt it an appropriate thing to share today, Christmas Day 2019…as my earliest days into comics are in a cascading 30-year-anniversary going forward.

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The Weekly Haul: Week of December 18, 2019

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Just about the end of the year…and this might be the FIRST year I’ve actually "successfully" documented every week’s "main" haul (of NEW comics). December 18th may well be the "last week" of new comics for ME as I don’t think there’s REALLY much of anything coming out December 26th (25th being Christmas) and the publishers (especially DC) seemed to really load the week here.

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THREE big endings this week (just with stuff I bought…I’m pretty sure there were a number of others as well!).

Tom King‘s run on Batman (and City of Bane within) ends with the 85th issue here. Supposedly King‘s story will continue into/wrap up in a Batman/Catwoman series, but apparently there’s going to be at least a 4-month wait with nothing showing through March 2020 solicitations, making April 2020 the earliest for that to pick up.

Doomsday Clock finally has its final issue, #12, some 25 or so months after #1 and 13 or so after originally intended. I skipped a middle chunk of issues but opted to get #12, as I’d gotten #1 and wanted to read it for myself to see how it ended.

And I should have just waited for the collected volume for Batman: Last Knight on Earth…I have yet to read #1, and here’s the 3rd and final issue…so why not have just waited?

Hellblazer #2 marks the 3rd issue in this new iteration. The one-shot and #1 were good overall and I’m digging the new Vertigo-esque take on the character after years of stuff being watered down. I’m pretty sure the writer had a run on the original Hellblazer series as well, so that’d fit!

While I’d been curious about Millar/Netflix and their Project X-Mas thing, speculation I’d read indicated a host of things that it could be. My initial thought awhile back was American Jesus/Chosen but I dismissed that, figuring it to be another title like Fell that was SO good and promising and I enjoyed and…figured it’d never be heard from again. So when Bleeding Cool spoiled what the book was, I emailed the comic shop to have a copy held. I remember getting the original Chosen issues, and then buying the American Jesus tpb…so definitely looking forward to reading this new mini!

And continuing with the facsimile/replica editions, Eternals #1.

Finally, though I got it the weekend before, the Crisis on Infinite Earths 100-page giant issue, from Walmart. Because somehow I’d come to believe IT was to be another "exclusive," so grabbed it when I saw it…but apparently it’s not. Of course, if I waited for the non-Walmart edition, I believe I’d STILL be waiting, so there’s that.


All in all, not that huge a week; albeit some more expensive-than-usual issues.

I’m mostly hoping that 2020 is a more focused year; with (hopefully) consistently-smaller weeks in the way of NEW new stuff. If I get to it by year’s end, I’ll hopefully detail some thoughts for this blog heading into the new year, as well as some current "grail" comics/specific-issues goals for the 2020 hunt, and so on.

For now…instead of scheduling this post to go live tomorrow morning (Christmas!) I’m just going to send it live tonight. Because why not? These are more for me than anything else, and I’m my own "boss" as the sole proprietor of this blog…

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The Weekly Haul Catch-Up: Weeks of November 20, 2019 to December 11, 2019

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Once again, it’s been a few weeks since a "Weekly Haul" post. Though I did get a random post up the other day with some bare-bones random brief thoughts on Marvel‘s 2099 stuff…and a path-to-500 for DC to give us a Robin #500 (semi-tongue-in-cheek, using "Marvel Math.").

So let’s play catch-up on the last few weeks’ hauls. Or rather, the "main" hauls…as I have partial plans for a couple other things from recent weeks as well!


Week of November 20, 2019

Having dropped some titles, I’ve been finding my regular weeks a bit more manageable, and even been willing to "try" a bit of randomness with other titles for whatever reason(s).

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Batman has long been a pull; I believe this may be the single longest run of the title I’ve had, at least for issue quantity. I have the entirety of King‘s run thus far, and though I’ve planned to "finish out" the run, since I think they’re shifting to monthly from biweekly AND there’s no sign yet of the promised Batman/Catwoman series, I may go ahead and continue along. With rumours of yet another relaunch next year anyway, It probably can’t hurt too much to get a few more issues and simply have a complete run.

He-Man and the Masters of the Multiverse is just an interesting premise to me, mixed with a bit of would-be-nostalgia, that I decided to get the first issue in a slight bit of "support," slight bit of gambling. I had/have no intention of subsequent single issues, though I may watch for reviews to pick up a collected edition.

I’ve settled pretty firmly into enjoying/appreciating the various "Facsimile" edition reprints, so the Green Lantern/Green Arrow drug issue was a no-brainer.

I need to catch up on reading TMNT Urban Legends, especially as we’re getting close to the couple of issues I’d had in college that showed me how much the characters had been changed and solidly impacted a paper I wrote about the Turtles.

Doom caught my eye along with the classic "font" for the title 2099 so I gave in and bought the first issue for the sheer nostalgia of the thing. I opted NOT to pick up subsequent issues…though my interest in the ORIGINAL 2099 stuff has been rekindled.

I snagged the Death of Superman: The Wake tpb because…well, Death of Superman. This collected a digital-only (or digital-first?) mini-series and I was interested for its title and concept, thinking it’d give some insight to the "current version" of the infamous now-27-year-old story. (Unfortunately, I was highly disappointed and found the thing to be something better-suited for distribution in cereal boxes!)


Local Comic Shop Day (November 23, 2019)

I’m not very keen on "Local Comic Shop Day" in general. I’m fairly accepting of "Halloween Comic Fest" but LCSD isn’t much of a "thing" to me.

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That being said…there were a couple issues I wound up picking up. The Walking Dead: The Alien one-shot, and a Super DInosaur reprint or whatever it is. I am pretty sure I have the original Super Dinosaur issue(s) from back in the day…somewhere. And given the nature of the Walking Dead issue–new story, not by Kirkman himself, and not previously available in print, and with the final volume of the TPBs out MONTHS ago, seemed like a decent companion piece to the series.


Week of November 27, 2019

Having decided in 2015 that it was officially my "next Grail," I was ‘officially’ on the lookout for an in-my-price-range copy of Uncanny X-Men #266 up until finally scoring a copy earlier this year.

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So hardly six months after finally getting my genuine, actual real Uncanny X-Men #266…Marvel puts out a facsimile edition of the issue. Not that I wasn’t going to buy the thing, but it kinda figures, on the timing. I can’t be sure if the facsimile edition would have satisfied me in terms of my personal collection, though. C’est la vie.

We also got the final (for now) issue of Hope, which I look forward to binge-reading/catching up on.

I’d picked up the Sandman Universe Presents: Hellblazer issue a few weeks earlier, and decided to also get the first issue of what I BELIEVE is an ongoing new Hellblazer series. I enjoyed both issues well enough and they definitely have the general feel of the original 300-issue series, while being a different version of the Constantine character. I may well grab the 2nd issue if I notice it when it’s out, and go from there.

Continuing their pattern, along with the Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Infinite Crisis, we also got a DC Dollar Comics reprint of the first issue of the original Infinite Crisis #1.

I’m pretty sure I have all the earlier issues of Second Coming so grabbed the latest issue. It’s one that I really need to get around to READING to decide whether I genuinely want to be getting it…though at this point I’d likely have been much better-served just waiting for a collected edition.

And finally, I decided to grab a recent-back-issue in Dark Horse‘s The Little Mermaid. It’s a mini-series, but being from Dark Horse I was curious how it’d stack up to the IDW stuff as well as how it’ll wind up in collected format, as well as being curious if it was actually a reprint as I’m fairly sure we already had a comics adaptation of the film.


Week of December 4, 2019

And getting into December…

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New Batman issue.

And the fifth/final issue of the 5-issue TMNT: Shredder in Hell mini-series. A mini-series that saw its first issue come out in January 2019. And I’d believe the series to be monthly, that it was due to wrap up by May or June…yet it only JUST made it ahead of TMNT #100…and I believe MAY have caused the apparent delay in that issue.

The latest Spawn issue. At #303, it’s my 47th issue in a row for the series…coming up on MY 50th as such!

The newest Usagi Yojimbo gets us to #7 of the latest series. And having just picked up the first issue, I decided to get the second of The Little Mermaid.

I swore off all Boom! Studios books nearly four years ago.However, my primary "exception" in comics is the TMNT. So a Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers/TMNT book was an interesting quandary for me. In the end, I opted to allow my "TMNT Exception" to OVERRIDE my refusal to get single issues from Boom! Studios…though I ALMOST reconsidered when I saw the variant cover (or one of them, anyway) was a turtle’s hands holding a Power Ranger helmet…like it was just being insulting at that point.

Finally for the week, a facsimile edition of the "death of Flash" issue of the original Crisis on Infinite Earths; as well as a facsimile edition of Marvel‘s original Star Wars #1. And for good measure, a DC Dollar Comics issue of Birds of Prey.


Week of December 11, 2019

…and now we’re up to the most recent week and (perhaps) back on schedule! I’m also a bit unsure of what the remainder of the year holds, with this week’s December 18 being the last non-holiday Wednesday of the year, with the following Wednesday being December 25th–Christmas Day; and the very next Wednesday will be New Year’s Day (also, January 1st, the first day of a new year!)

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IDW‘s ongoing TMNT title finally hits its 100th issue! This also marks 100 issues that I’ve kept up with the series, buying every single issue, from #1 to #100, as it came out. Which is also a record for me, I’m sure, for ANY single run of ANY comic series in all my 30-some years of being into comics.

Then, despite dropping the Superman books, I ended up grabbing a copy of #17 off the rack while waiting in line at a Black Friday sale, so went ahead and–against better judgement–picked up #18 as well. I suppose it says ENOUGH that I didn’t immediately read either issue. And I guess we’ll see if I pick up any of the specials further dealing with "the reveal." As of this typing, though, I’m ready to wash my hands of the thing, though!

I would not have bothered with the Defenders issue except for it being a facsimile edition, so I went ahead and got it for the sake of having it. I’m highly confident that it’s GOTTA be better and a much superior time-value than any MODERN Marvel $4.99 issues!

Finally, the Tales of the Dark Multiverse: Teen Titans – The Judas Contract as well as the DC Dollar Comics reprint of the ending of the original Judas Contract story (as I believe it’ll be the ending of the story that diverges things for the Dark Multiverse).

I think there was an "off" week for Comic Shop News, and I’d’ve sworn we just had one of these previews, but maybe not? Either way…a cheery sorta Hembeck image of the characters ready for 2020!


Neca, Target, and Turtle Two-Packs

Along with the Wednesday comic shop visit on the 11th, I also ducked into a Target across the street, in a vain attempt to find a certain two-pack of figures.

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I was rather shocked to actually find them…as I’d been in Target stores well over two-dozen times across the four weeks ending with December 11th (and at least 7 or 8 different Target locations amidst those!)

But I finally scored the only 2-pack I wanted from the new wave of classic-TMNT figures, and for retail price, rather than the 2X-3X pricing of scalpers.

‘Nuff said.

While I’m interested in Leatherhead coming up for the line, I have no particular interest in Slash, nor a pixelated Shredder. So if these waves continue to be the turtles themselves, re-issues of Foot Soldiers, and a pack of new characters, I would just hope that Leatherhead could be his own thing, or come paired with a Foot Ninja and that the 3rd wave is something that would NOT require such frustration and effort to track down.

I found this Bebop/Rocksteady pack the very day after I’d more or less officially decided to "give up" on the line, at least until after the new year, but since I was across the street from the Target figured what was ONE MORE try after so ridiculously many for the previous several weeks?

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Robin #500: Marvel Math-ing 80 Years of The Boy Wonder

So, apparently in 2020, DC is going to publish a $9.99 one-shot celebrating 80 years of Robin. Whereas in 2018, they did so for Superman with Action Comics #1000. And in 2019, they did so for Batman with Detective Comics #1000. And coming up in January and February 2020, they’re doing so with Wonder Woman #750 and Flash #750…all characters with present ongoing titles.

I’ve long cut DC some slack with the numbering on Action and Detective compared to Marvel‘s titles, as both have ONE "lapse" in numbering, which makes it relatively easy to slot the issues into their proper spots.

But now their doing the same for Wonder Woman and Flash requires a bit more work due to gaps and shorter runs and (at least with Wonder Woman) prior "legacy renumbering."

And with DC pulling other stuff that’s caused me to almost entirely back away while eyeing moving further away–and seeming to be following Marvel‘s lead in a negative (to me) manner…fine.

So WHAT IF..DC did "Marvel Math" for Robin, heading toward this 80th anniversary thing?

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The way I have it figured…they should be able to give us a giant-sized Robin #500, celebrating 500 issues featuring Robin (Dick, Tim, Stephanie, and Damian, at least) as well as the 80th anniversary of the character.

Even nearly 17 years later, I still don’t care for what they’ve done with Jason/Red Hood…and I wouldn’t count the Red Hood stuff as that’s been more of a team title (to my knowledge) and I don’t know enough about the title(s) and the character, nor has Jason operated AS Robin in the time that Tim or Dick have had titles of their own.

Now, granted, MY math here gets a bit screwy and isn’t entirely in the best order, and there’s certainly overlap, particularly in the original Robin and Nightwing ongoing titles. But frankly…if Marvel can screw around with grabbing random stuff to get to certain numbers, then I’m going to do the same here.

Perhaps my math is off slightly somewhere, but regardless…at this point, I feel like the Robin 80 Years 100-Page Super Spectacular or whatever it’s going to be called–with "decades variants" and the works–really ought to just simply be Robin #500.

What do you think? Would you be "for" a Robin #500?

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