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The Weekly Haul: Week of January 15, 2020

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This week’s a bit more in line with what I’d like, where I can actually get several comics without racing headlong into $30+ at the register!

One more expensive issue, a $2.99, and a $3.99…plus two $3.99 replica editions/facsimile editions that are well worth $3.99 apiece compared to fair market value on the original editions!

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I haven’t gotten around to reading the first issue of this Question mini yet….but on strength of the creators and the character, I’m interested, and if I get to binge-reading, I’d regret not having all issues. And as I’ve passed on a couple other similar projects, I think I’d decided that if I was getting the first issue, I was getting the later issues, barring some significant reason not to.

The new Spawn issue puts us 4 past 300. I’d think 300 issues is impressive, but is anyone else buying this title? I mean, it’s over 300, that’s hitting triple-digits legitimately, 3 times over, and starting toward the 4th! No one wants any issue numbered higher than can be counted on their own fingers and toes, right??? Or is there something to ACTUALLY keeping the numbering going, AND actually keeping to a reasonable price? This is the 48th consecutive issue I’ve bought of Spawn as a new issue…on strength of that $2.99 instead of $3.99. It was $2.99 when DC was at $3.99 for everything. It was $2.99 when DC cut back to $2.99 and double-shipping with Rebirth, and it’s still $2.99 as DC has leapt back to $3.99! (Meanwhile, Marvel‘s cranking out the $4.99+ books!)

Apparently Second Coming is a mini-series. Or a "season" (blah!). I’m pretty sure I’ve snagged all 5 previous issues, but unfortunately I’m not 100% on that. Still…it sorta proves my point to myself to quit knowingly buying short mini-series and wait for the collected volumes! At this point, after all, I assume a collected edition will make its way along very shortly, perhaps for only $9.99, but even if "only" $19.99 that’ll be like a "free" issue content-wise over the singles, which I’ve paid basically $24 to get.

Then we have Detective Comics #359 (Replica Edition) and The Incredible Hulk #180 (Facsimile Edition). Two reprint editions of comics from…well, some years before I was even born. The former being the first appearance of Batgirl and the latter having one panel at the very end of Wolverine, apparently making it the first appearance of the character, despite the next issue generally being the one credited. (I mean, if you get technical I absolutely would go with #180 as the first appearance, but what’s the POINT when it’s JUST one single panel? I’d much rather have the issue where you see the character DO STUFF and actually find out a little about him and see him face the Hulk and all that!)

I have to give Marvel credit…I’d swear I saw some ad or it was the solicitation text pointing out they gave us #180 last year, so now they’re giving us 180 since it’s "also" part of the first appearance and such. For these reprint editions, I’m actually all for that. Heck, I would PROBABLY buy a bunch of Marvel books if they simply every month published reprint editions of various older runs in this facsimile/replica format!

Comic Shop News meanwhile hits #1700. I’d swear I remember when it was in the mid-ish 300s back in the ’90s. It’s cool to see something like this still going after all this time. In some ways–with it being hard to count on being available by the next week, even–issues of CSN are almost like a "ticket stub" of the weekly purchasing. Or a "proof of purchase" or such. A "souvenir" of being a weekly comics person. Of going to a bricks and mortar shop (I don’t believe the online retailers provide CSN…though I could be wrong).

It’s rather telling that I have NO new Marvel issues; and though The Question is technically DC, it barely counts, given the way they’re pushing this larger physical size and the Black Label…um…label…so much. I’d consider it Black Label more than DC in the same way one used to be able to consider something Vertigo more than DC.

And as said…a decent week, a little over $20, but closer to $20 than $30. And it’s my enjoyment of replica/facsimile editions that lands two of the 5 on my pile this week. I feel like I’m finally getting back to a GOOD "balance" where there’s "enough" worth getting to keep to the weekly thing, but without having massive sticker-shock or buyer’s remorse.

Of course, 20 years ago, this haul would’ve probably been $8 cheaper. But this is the here and now.

That said…we’ll see what next week holds!

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Wolverine and the X-Men Magazine #1 [Magazine Review]

Wolverine and the X-Men Magazine #1 cover

Wolverine and the X-Men Magazine #1 cover

Normally, I wouldn’t consider a magazine something worth writing a review over. However, this one struck me as something I definitely would like to write a bit about.

I came across this at a Wal-Mart last weekend, and decided to flip through it, just to see what it contained. Once I saw what it contained (as well as its price), I decided it was worth picking up.

The cover’s nothing too special–although, I have to give it credit for grabbing MY attention (a nice, classic image, there).  This debut issue of the magazine (headlining Wolverine…after all, there IS a movie coming out in a few months) contains no articles–it’s not that sort of magazine. Instead, this is more of a magazine-sized collected-volume.

This contains Wolverine: First Class #1, Incredible Hulk #s 180-181, and X-Men: First Class #1. There’s also a Mini Marvels short by Chris Giarrusso that was probably contained in one of the First Class issues originally.

For a $5.99 cover price, one gets the contents (uninterrupted by ads except between stories) of four comics. The price is a mere penny ($.01) more expensive than the two First Class issues combined, PLUS the two classic Incredible Hulk issues are present (these featured the very first appearance of the Wolverine).

What really struck me as the value here was that where many of Marvel’s comics are now at the $3.99 point for a standard size issue, for only $2 more one has two issues of recent content, plus the two Hulk issues. That the magazine is a first issue and contains the contents of two first issues and a first appearance works very well–no one’s really being plopped in the middle of some story from the get-go here.

As an adult, I enjoyed this. I’d never picked up any of the First Class comics so those were both new to me. I’d also never read the Hulk issues Wolverine first appeared in–I don’t know if I even have any reprints despite 20 years of comic collecting.

I’m looking forward to the next issue, to see what they do–if this is (for awhile) basically a reprint magazine with two recent comics and a couple classics (or even a move to more recent comics), I’ll be quite pleased, and more than willing to lay out the $6 for an issue.

Definitely recommended!

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