Looking To The Stars: Comic Book Guy, No More!

It’s been quite a week. Got a bit to discuss, so let’s get to it.

First; regarding the appraisal of Liberality for All #1, written last week by this author. Despite expectations of the greatest outpouring of hate-mail in recent fan mail, I got not one e-mail, heated or otherwise, regarding the aforementioned review. I can only conclude one of three things from this.

1. The comic book industry really does cater to a liberal elite who would never consider such a book worth reading.
2. All of you out there reading my column trust my judgment and opinions well enough to take me at my word that the book was not worth picking up.
3. All the conservatives who would argue the point about the book being a poorly-drawn, badly written waste of a tree are too busy trying to get the drink holder on their computer fixed to trade angry flames with me right now.

I did, however, get an e-mail asking why I hadn’t written a thing about Wizard World Texas when said convention occurred within my backyard; this author being a Dallas boy.

The sad truth is that I didn’t go for two reasons. The first was that a recent death in the circle of friends that week left us with little desire to go cavort and make merry in the geeky fashion. The other is that aside from Summer Glau of Firefly fame, there was nobody at Wizard World Texas I wanted to meet for any reason outside of giving them a good-size boot to the head and none of those in attendance were worth doing time over.

Sorry, Rob Liefeld. I hate and despise you but I ain’t going to Huntsville over the likes of you.

So for those of you who enjoyed my last few convention reports (both of them), my apologies for not having another one for you. There’s always next year, though.

Speaking of comic book related events in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, there is an up-coming show I should mention. On Saturday, November the 19th, Los Bastardos, an acting troupe that performs weekly showings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show will be celebrating the one-year anniversary of their current theater site with a special theme show; comic book characters. All the actors will be dressed as different superheroes and super-villains and audience members are encouraged to get in on the fun as well. It all begins at Midnight, Saturday the 19th. Tickets are $6 at the door, with the cast selling candy and other goodies before the show starts.

Finally tonight; the biggest bit of news and one that inspires quite a lot of nostalgia on my part.

As most of you know, I got my start writing with the late and lamented DC Comics fandom site Fanzing way back in 1999. That came to a close in early 2003 when Fanzing published its’ last issue. It was not too long before the last issue was to be published however, that I got a faithful e-mail.

A guy by the name of Ben Morse wrote me and several other Fanzing writers, saying that he liked our work and that he was inspired to start his own fandom magazine. He said that there were posts waiting for us if we were interested. Well, I was just starting up graduate school and trying to find a job so I had a lot more concerns on my mind at the time. But given that one of my few complaints about working for Fanzing was that I read a lot of independent titles I never got to discuss because of the magazine’s focus, it occurred to me that I had nothing to lose by giving it a try.

I’ve been here ever since. Ben Morse has gone on to fame and fortune (well, as much as you can get as a guru for Wizard Comics anyway) and I’ve had the chance to work with a sleigh-load of talented folks ever since. But something funny happened that same month; I got my other dream job, working as a salesman in a comic book store.

It is now nearly three years later. Three years ago, I was just starting graduate school. Three years ago, I was just starting a new job. Three years ago, I was just starting a new magazine.

Now, I’ve got my Masters. And now, after months of searching, I’m starting a new job. To hundreds of people in the DFW area, I shall no longer be the comic book guy. I won’t be there every Wednesday morning, ready to offer poly-bagged goodness and the word on whether or not you really need to buy Nightwing if you are reading Villains United. I will no longer be the happy uncle, passing out free comics at the library and the movie theater.

Does this mean I’m quitting the magazine too? Make a complete circle on all those changes three years ago? Not on your life!

True, without that discount I once had and without having all day to read comics when things are slow, I won’t be covering quite as much material as I once did. In fact, this new position is going to give me a lot more free-time but a little less pay. The list of what I actually buy on a regular basis is going to cut back considerably.

So in the coming weeks, expect a lot more look-backs at classic material. More reviews of classic trade-paperbacks. Maybe even an episode guide or two akin to what I did with my Green Arrow Reading Guide and The Green Lantern Reading Guide Part One and Part Two.

But that’s the next few weeks. This week, I’m done. So let’s just end it by saying thank you all. For the last three years and the next three, it was and will be memorable.

Tune in next week. Same Matt time. Same Matt website.