Words of Questionable Wisdom – The Trouble with Retailers Pt 1

Ok, since my regularly scheduled column is on a hiatus of sorts, I feel kinda guilty for depriving loyal Nexus readers of my presence. Thus I’ve decided to give you, the loyal Nexus readers five days of five columns, to make up for my absence.

Our first stop is my beef with retailers. Now as some of you might know, I recently moved from Las Vegas to Baltimore. It was a relatively painless move, all things considered. I even managed to return to the comic shop that I frequented when before I moved from Baltimore to Las Vegas.

But setting up my pull list was quite an ordeal.

Y’see I got into town on a Saturday and my friend and I went to the shop (which had moved from where it was when I used to live here.) I stopped in and inquired about setting up a pull list, to which the guy behind the counter directed me to their website. So rather than having a list for me to check off, or some way of signing me up for title in the store, I had to go home and establish an internet connection. Joy.

So I do that and I find the website to be a tad confusing. But I trudge through and (hopefully) I’ve added all of my titles or at least all of the titles that’ll be out on Wednesday.

Wrong. I get to the store on Wednesday and they a) don’t have a pull list for me and b) can’t explain why I don’t have a list. Eventually it gets straightened out, but because of one of my other gripes, I’m still missing issues of books that I read.

Y’see my new/old store is one of the stores that don’t really believe, not only in back issues, but in ordering more issues than you’re going to sell.

And to some degree I get that. I mean I’ve got a decent grasp of economics so I can’t understand why you wouldn’t want to be loaded down with a bunch of product that’s not moving. But I also know that as a consumer, I dig it when a place is full stocked.

I mean I don’t think it’s really asking that much for a comic book shop to have current issues of Vertigo titles on hand for the buying public to, y’know, buy. Because of my initial mix up, I had to wait until two weeks ago to get 100 Bullets #91, which had to be reordered. Meanwhile I had to avoid scrutinizing the cover to 100 Bullets #92, the first issue of the title that actually made it into my pull box. And believe me when I tell you it was a long month and a half, possibly the longest ever. Plus I’m still waiting to see how the previous Scalped arc (which ended with issue #17) concluded.

Now I know that not all comic shops are like this. For instance Fantasy Comics, my original comic shop back in Tucson, not only has a plethora of back issues but also a plethora of current issues on the stands. Those guys seem to understand the joys of collecting comics.

Anyway, that’s my first rant about retailers. I’ll have a second chapter later in the journey.

But before I go, because I know you care

What I Read Recently: Limited Series Edition

Joker’s Asylum: Penguin – Strong issue. Really strong issue. Penguin has never been more interesting or human or thrilling to read. I really think that this is as close as we’re getting to Business Suit Lex for awhile.

Teen Titans: Year One #5 – I don’t know if it’s Wolfram or someone at DC editorial, huge props goes to whoever included The Flips, Ding Dong Daddy and the Ant in the mix. I mean this mini is great and fun on it’s own, but it’s those references to actual characters from the early days of the Teen Titans that puts this mini over the top.

Final Crisis #2 – I dig it. I loved the scene in Japan and the idolatry of hero culture. I loved Monitor working a day job and looking for his magic word. I love bullets traveling backwards through time.

Final Crisis Requiem – Is this not proof positive that Tomasi + Mahnke = Comic Greatness? Leave it to Mahnke to make J’onn’s new look actually work (and to make me miss it.) And trust Tomasi to inject the story with such humanity. Great story and a fitting send off for the character.

Dreamwar #3 – Wow. Obviously Zealot vs Batman was the main event of the issue and it completely lived up to the hype. I mean the brutality of the fight was just awesome. Seriously. Everyone should pick up that issue just for that fight. You don’t have to know what’s going on (I’m not quite sure I do) but that fight is so worth the price of admission.

Superman’s Reign #4 – Eh, the story is waning, but Igle’s art keeps things looking pretty. It was nice to get some backstory on why Superman became who he became.

Cyborg #2 – I can’t say that I’m really that interested in this book anymore. Normally I’m a sucker for the doppelganger storyline, but this one just isn’t doing it for me. Maybe things will pick up next issue.


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