This is going to be a move of sorts for me. I’ve been into comics for years. I’ve purchased them on and off all my life. However, I got back into them when Aaron was young and wanted the Ultimate Spiderman issues regularly. I dropped them three or so years ago when we moved to Tampa for a year. Moving back to Kenosha I went to start up again at the local comic store only to learn it had burned. Sometime later I found midtowncomics.com who has a good pull-list service. I set up to get my two favorite comics Fables and Wolverine for sure and a few others that change as I see what interests me.
Once I again started getting comics regularly I posted my thoughts about them over at my Google+ account (+Mary Louise Eklund circle me there and say hi!) with scans of the covers and panels or pages I had specific comments about. Still this was frustrating because I couldn’t put the scan next to where I was commenting about the panel. In Google+ all scans go in a slide show for the post. After much debate within myself about ‘crossing the streams’ (Ghostbusters fans will get that) of my more thought-out blog here and my off the cuff stuff there – I decided to move my Comic Comments here where I can put the image with the comments.
If you aren’t into comics and are still reading, good for you! But you can skip these posts and wait for what interest you, rest assured my feelings won’t be hurt.
This is fun for me since I’m a fangurl. I’ll be voicing what I personally think about the art and stories. I’m not a professional at this. I vacillate between reviewing, comment upon, and summarizing. Really I just ramble about what thoughts I had reading the issue, trying not to spoiler it too much for those who want to read the whole thing. I’ll try to put in warnings about spoiling the story when I get specific so if you are very sensitive about that sort of thing you’ll know to STOP right there. I’ll try to remember to put a more tag after that warn so you’ll know proceed at your own risk.
My favorite character of all time is Wolverine aka Logan aka James Howlett aka bunch of other names. BUT I do read several other comics. Yet to my fangurl side James is family. Like family I can harp on him and Marvel, sometimes we are the hardest on the ones we love the most.
I comment on full arcs and stand-alone issues. So what I’m saying is I’ll be commenting on full stories, not issues by issue. I’ll comment on stand-alones as one story. Occasionally I get one-shots that catch my eye. If they are a one-shot arc I’ll post when all the issues are out, if it’s a single it’ll be its own post. Thus a post will be my thoughts of a full story be it an arc or an issue.
I go through my pull-list alphabetically and am currently on the Wolverine. Since that’s an ultimate favorite of mine I thought it a good place to make the jump. Once I get to the end of the pull-list the front has completed its last arc and I’m ready to start the process again. This will be interrupted somewhat by the 0ne-shots. For those interested here’s my current pull list.
- Dark Shadows
- Dresden Files
- Fury Max
- Grimm Fairy Tales: Myths and Legends
- Uncanny X-Force
- Walking Dead
- Wolverine and The X-Men
Now for those who are wondering why don’t I just buy TPBs when they come out…
WHOA! Wait – what the heck!
What is a TPB, a fangurl, a fanboy, a pull list, an arc, a stand alone, and such? I’m new to this stuff, am somewhat interested but you’re slinging terms I don’t know here fast and furious!
Okay, like lots of hobbies comic books have their own jargon. It describes the comics, types of comics, fans, types of fans, publishers and such. I’ll try to define some I’ve thrown out here in this post for those who aren’t familiar but are game to give these posts a try.
TPB stands for Trade Paperback. It’s when the publisher collects all the issues in an arc and publishes them as a book. First off these are more expensive, take longer to come out than monthly, and sometimes come out as even more expensive hard covers before being actual paperbacks. While I only comment on completed arcs, I tend to read monthly or every other month. Except for titles that are new to me and I’ll build up several issues to get into the characters and stories. I read a lot of comic fan sites where current stories are discussed, if I wasn’t up to date I’d be lost on the latest discussions. That’s why I’m not a big TPB buyer.
Fangurls or fangirls if you prefer I like the later because I find it ironic-ish. Are females who like comics. Generally, what appeals to us and amuses us aren’t always what the fanboys like. You can Google terms like ‘boobs don’t work that way’ or ‘women in refrigerators’ or ‘Mary Jane does Spiderman’s laundry’ for some ideas of the different takes on things. There are hundreds more, one of my favorites has come to be known as the ‘frozen Wolverpups’ among myself and few of my fangurl friends. Feel free to point out a few of your own in the comments if you like!
You can guess from the previous explanation that the term fanboys refers to males who like comics. Also generally to the men who make comics too, as you have to like them to want to make them. It’s gone mainstream and even a comic-con in Knoxville, Tennessee has taken the name. I won’t be going as I fear it will cater too much to the aspects of fanboydom.
For all our differences fangurls and fanboys both share a love comics, comic book heroes, and all that goes with it. We love to cuss and discuss all aspects of the characters, industry, stories, and etc. Honestly we have more in common than not.
An arc is a collection of comic issues that tell a full story. Unlike comics of say the early ’70s when I started reading them one issue generally doesn’t hold a full story but rather a chapter of the story. An arc varies in number of issues but, as a rule of thumb, it is four books.
Stand-alones are issues that contain a full story. They do still happen but aren’t the standard as they once were. Now stand-alones can happen between arcs, to clear the palette and provide a jumping on point for newbies.
A pull-list is a list of comics to which you subscribe. (had to do dance to avoid those annoying dangling prepositions!) Comic books companies don’t have a good subscription service. Why? Dunno they are just notoriously bad. The major publishers don’t offer subscriptions to all their regular titles much less getting one-shots (I’ll define that next). To cope with this comic book stores offer the service of pull lists. You give them a list of titles you want, they pull you a copy when a new issue comes and put it in your file. In my case Midtown comics empties out my file monthly, bills my credit card for the issues, then ships them to me in a box. If you go to a store you tend to pick it up weekly or every other week.
One-shots are just that a single issue or arc that doesn’t belong to an on going title. It might be an aside story that the publisher doesn’t want to be in the timeline (aka cannon) of the main title but wants to tell. It might be a good aside story that fills in some background on the main title, or it might just be a fun collection of shorts that just flesh out the character. For whatever reason it wasn’t worked into the main titles and was issued as a one off on its own.
WHEW! I think that’s enough of an introduction post. I honestly didn’t expect it to ramble on this long. I’ll leave it to you to flag me down if you don’t understand but want to get it. I’ll get on with my Comic Comments in my next post starting at the beginning of Wolverine Vol. 4 which was the Wolverine Goes To Hell Arc.
Until next time!