With the exception of reading every MAD magazine I could get my hands on as a child, I did not read comics until I was an adult. Well, there was a single issue of Captain America that I somehow came across, I don’t really remember how. It took place in World War II and mentioned “Fortress Europa” with an asterisk and a small box explaining “Fortress of Europe”.
When I was in my mid-twenties and in the Air Force, two things got me to try out comics: my best friend and an issue of The Rocket, a local Seattle music scene ‘zine. My friend was always a comic book fan, and when he was in college, he started writing his own comic book called Billy Nguyen. It was illustrated by Stan Shaw, and got rave reviews. Because of that he was asked to write for Ralph Snart and Mr. Lizard by NOW comics. At the same time, The Rocket ran an article about the Love and Rockets comic by the brothers Hernandez. It sounded fascinating, so I decided to check it out. So the first comic I bought was an issue of Love and Rockets bought at Golden Age Collectibles in Seattle’s Pike Place Market.
Once I had that first issue, I was on a mad chase to hunt down all the previous issues. I also started buying just about everything from Fantagraphics. I was especially fond of anything from Pete Bagge and Dan Clowes. I bought Cerebus and Puma Blues. I hunted for everything from Matt Howarth. Eventually I was brought into the mainstream when I bought and read The Watchmen. That led me to Sandman, Constantine, and all the DC Prestige format comics like Howard Chaykin’s Blackhawks and Mike Grell’s The Longbow Hunters. I also started reading Marvel comics, jumping right into all the X-Men titles right around 1990 or so. I discovered John Byrne’s She-Hulk and became a fan. Eventually, I even started buying the first Image and Valiant comics. The early-’90s was the height of my superhero comic buying days.
When I got out of the Air Force in 1989, I started writing comic reviews of self-published titles for Comix F/X. That only lasted for a few issues but I found it very rewarding.
That was also when I first encountered manga. Ah My Goddess was the first manga I got into. I bought all of Studio Proteus’ titles that they were releasing via both Dark Horse and Fantagraphics. Then I started buying Viz titles and all the new manga publishers that popped up in the mid-’90s like Iron Cat and Tokyopop. I eventually stopped buying superhero comics and settled on manga almost exclusively. My days of having a fill box at the local comic store ended about the early 2000s. Manga was now being published in graphic novel form in the US, and it was available in book stores, and I haven’t bought a traditional comic book since.
In the last few years, I’ve bought fewer and fewer manga titles. The ones I have bought have mostly been purchased at Kinokuniya in Seattle’s International District. I buy in both English and Japanese. I don’t speak Japanese, but I’ve taught myself to read hiragana and katakana, and I know a fair number of kanji, so I can actually make sense of a lot of it. It helps that I have an excellent kanji app called Imiwa? I strongly recommend it.
So now we are here in the present day, and I’m getting back into superhero comics. The reason? The Marvel Cinematic Universe, and Ms. Marvel. I love the MCU movies. They’re fun and they show how much potential there is in the superhero genre. And Ms. Marvel is what all those independent comic publishers were trying for 20 to 30 years ago. Relevant and representational. But even then, I don’t recall any publisher with the courage to created a superhero comic around a Muslim, Pakistani-American teen-aged girl. I downloaded the Comixology app and started buying all my comics digitally. Reading Ms. Marvel lead me directly into reading Captain Marvel. I decided to start reading Batgirl because of all the great things I read about Gail Simone as a writer (and it was all true.) I’m reading Birds of Prey and I read Batwoman until the original creative team quit. I’m reading She-Hulk, and I plan of starting up Wonder Woman and getting caught up on the archives of both WW and BoP. (These are all titles about female characters. I’m not sure what that says about me.) I’m reading Sex Criminals and Lumberjanes, Doc Savage and Red Sonja. Comics are fun again, and I’m having a blast. Thanks, comics. I appreciate it.
had to shut a bitch down today
And that’s how public shootings and school shootings and shit like that happen. I’m not saying that this dude is not creepy as fuck, but this is not the way to handle this! He didn’t say anything mean (on purpose), and when you shut him down like that how the fuck do you think he’s going to react? He must know he’s somewhat creepy, but when a complete stranger that he adores tells him so vividly how creepy he is, that must wreck his world. I’m just saying I wouldn’t be surprised if he bought a gun (legally, but that’s a different issue) and went in to the store he knows you fucking work at. Just be nice to people fuck.
Alright, you know what? I don’t want to reblog this post. I want this post to die. And I have never once reblogged to reply to someone else’s comment on this post. But this one? This one I’m fucking gonna, because how. dare. you.
Are you seriously one of those slimy, inhuman grease traps of a human being who blame VICTIMS OF SHOOTINGS FOR THE FUCKING SHOOTINGS
Don’t you EVER come at me and try to tell me that I need to be responsible, personally responsible, for the mental satisfaction of the kind of monsters who would do something like that. Don’t you ever tell me I have to let myself be uncomfortable around people who LITERALLY STALK ME and put on a big smile and let them down gently because in your twisted little brain it is MY JOB TO KEEP THEM FROM KILLING PEOPLE
H O W F U C K I N G D A R E Y O U
YOU are the problem. YOU are the kind of person who justifies that kind of senseless violence by saying WELL IF SHE HAD JUST GIVEN HIM A CHANCE
IF SHE HAD JUST FUCKED HIM
IF HE HAD JUST ‘GOTTEN SOME’
HE WOULDN’T HAVE RAPED HER/SHOT THEM/DONE IT
Are you fucking proud of that? Are you proud that that’s the tiny drop you choose to drop into society’s bucket?
I don’t care if it ‘wrecked his world’ when he was called out on his socially unacceptable, disgusting behavior. I don’t caaaaaaaare
His actions are HIS actions. His actions are HIS fault
the next time I see a tragedy like the elliot rodger shooting on the news, I’m gonna think of all the vile comments from people online that say it all could have been avoided if the people he threatened and menaced would just relinquish their bodies and their comfort and their personal space for him, and I’m gonna s e e y o u r f a c e and I hope you fucking know it.
Don’t you ever talk to me. I am sick to my stomach over your fucking bullshit.
Captain Marvel #6 by Kelly Sue DeConnick (writer) and David Lopez (art). I’ve already written about how much I love this character and this comic series, so no need to go over that again. This is a kick-ass character in a kick-ass story by a kick-ass creative team. If you’re not already reading this, then get on it. Whether you’re buying it because you want to support a woman working in a male dominated industry writing about a woman working in a male dominated industry, or you support it because it’s a great comic book, it doesn’t matter. You win either way.
Octopus Pie Christmas Special 2013. This is a webcomic by Meredith Gran that I’m following. You might know her from her beautiful “Marceline and the Scream Queens” mini-series comic she did that is set in the world of Adventure Time.