Leave Your Spandex At The Door 1.11.03

Meet Manolis:

I am Manolis Vamvounis. I’m Greek, born and raised, and have never left the confines of my country. I’m 21 years old, a chemistry major in my senior year and an aspiring comics professional. I love comics with all my heart, ever since i was a little kid, secluded on my small island with nothing but comics and books to capture my imagination. I view comics as a sweet addiction that i don’t want to ever get cured of… Let’s start with some basics, or as i call it:

“Manolis’ list to crafting a good comics-related column”:
1.”What’s in a title?”: Choosing the right title for my column was a mind-numbing experience i chose to share with my online friends. The nominees were: “the Comics Orgy”, “Low Spandex Quotient”, “Leave your spandex at the door”, “the Spandex Optional Column (the S.O.C.)” and “the VertiGreek” (Well, okay, the last one was a joke, but still…) The column’s name isn’t final yet so I’ll be glad to hear which of the above you prefer, or if you have any other suggestions. (Contact info near the bottom of the column)

2.”Mission statement: I was approached by the multi-talented Ben Morse to write a Vertigo column, but since I figured I wouldn’t be able to be constrained in that specific theme I opted, instead of saying what the column will be about, to state what it WON’T be about: superheroes. Sure, I read several spandex titles, but the topic’s already covered by more capable hands than mine (many cheers to Tom, Jim and Ben!). I’ll play in my own sandbox, and sometimes I’ll shy away from those boundaries to focus on some spandex faves that manage to transcend the spandex genre in brilliant ways. More on that later on…

3.”Content, content, content” or “what can you expect to see here in the following weeks”: Expect the focus of the column to shift through several titles from different imprints like Homage, Vertigo, MAX, OniPress and ABC, as I give you info on present, past and future projects. Expect to read current title reviews and recommendations, new-reader-friendly guides to old titles, sneak peeks at upcoming projects, and interviews with truly-talented folks. I’ve already lined up a series of Q&A with some favourite creators and some up&coming new faces) not sure about the phrasing Ben, you get what i want to say so edit it if it’s the wrong expression)

4.”Earn your readers’ trust”: If people don’t trust your opinion then it’s really no use recommending titles to them. I’ve included a list of all-time favourite titles below, most of which I’ll cover eventually in the column. I don’t profess to be a comics expert, but i know what i like and i want to “get the word out” about these fine comic gems!

5.”Refrain from using cheesy column formats as much as possible”: Hmmm, scratch that, or I’ll have to rewrite this entire first column…

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“Manolis’ list of brilliant comic books”: (in no particular order)

Current:

Lucifer, Y the Last Man, Fables, Hellblazer, Vertigo Pop, Catwoman, Tom Strong, Promethea, Zero Girl, Killer Princesses, the First, Route 666, the Negation, Sojourn

Older titles and Comics Classics:

Sandman, Preacher, the Authority, Books of Magic, MiracleMan, Howard the Duck, Strike force Morituri, the Crusades, Shade the Changing Man, Watchmen, Captain Britain, Top Ten, From Hell, Skreemer, Human Target, Askani’Son, Generation Next, Man-Thing, Inhumans

and to fill the minimum required spandex quotient of the column, some current pleasures:

the Ultimates, X-StatiX, Hulk, Agent-X, Captain Marvel, Fantastic Four, Amazing Spiderman, Uncanny X-Men, Avengers, Flash

To help me get an idea of what comics you like, you can answer the Question of the Week #1: “What are your current favourite mature readers titles?”

Also, send me answers to the question of the week as well as suggestions for the name of this column (which may change) and win spectacular prizes (like a exclusive sketch from yours truly?sure to rise in value?someday?)
Come back next Saturday for an exclusive interview with X-Men Unlimited penciller, Nick Derington!

Until then, see you in the funny pages!

Manolis Vamvounis
a.k.a. Doc Dooplove