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Halloween 2014

So much for a “holiday.” Longest day at work I’ve pulled in nearly 2 years, and totally, completely FORGOT it was Halloween before my day was done. So nothing fancy here, just closing out more than two months of (week)daily posting with the end of October here.

Lord Pumpkin: perfect villain for today, and one of my favorites in general, if often forgot amidst other favorites that are still in current/contemporary “new” comics.

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TMNT Revisited: The Ads of TMNT Adventures

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Full Post at TMNT Revisited

The Ads of TMNT Adventures

The Weekly Haul – Week of October 29th, 2014

This week was actually a pretty light week overall…an unfortunate rarity of late.

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Along with the “regular” stuff, I snagged the Cap book from a 60%-off bargain bin. Several volumes I might’ve also considered, but even 60% off wasn’t enough discount for me to splurge on ‘em this time.

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Somewhat matching the FCBD deal, for a certain donation to the CBLDF, a pack of “all” of the event day’s issue’s were available as a set. This of course being the Halloween Comicfest.

While there have been a number of these “mini-comics” available for/around Halloween for several years, it’s only been these last couple years that we’ve had the Comicfest “branding” on ‘em.

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Along with the mini-comics were several “full size” comics.

I can’t say I’m all that impressed with any of them, but being functionally quarter-bin comics and some more recent stuff, or at least more of a “sampler,” I’m happy enough with ‘em.

Especially considering the whole mess of ‘em was little more than the cost of a single $3.99 book.

The October Loot Crate…stuff

After getting sucked in for last month’s “Galactic” crate, I stuck around for October’s…and it’s arrived, albeit a bit later than I’d expected.

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I can’t say I’m really all that impressed with this month’s box. In and of itself, it’s definitely not worth it just for the Sharknado survival guide–which to me is the best thing in the whole mess. Not really a t-shirt guy, don’t care for the print, or the “tattoos” or the mini weapon or such.

And even the Walking Dead issue doesn’t do anything for me–I left off (in print) with #102 or so, this puts me with a 30-issue gap.

Can’t think of what November’s might be, but it’s a good thing I started with the Galactic one, cuz this one by itself would’ve left me soured on the whole concept.

Acquiring Critical Mass (and TPB pricing)

Usually, I’m not one for buying a tpb the week it comes out, nor for buying it at a shop instead of waiting to get it on Amazon or some other site or finding it at a used book store.

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But this volume is a bit of a milestone: it begins the collection of Paul Jenkins‘ run on the title–brand-new-to-collected-format material I have been interested in reading for well over a decade!

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I’ve been trying to keep up with these new editions, and fully intend a serious re-reading project at some point. Until then, though, I add to the shelf, while removing my older editions to make space for these numbered editions.

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This volume collects 13 issues, and while not the thickEST of the Hellblazer volumes in this new run, it’s still a very nicely-thick book. The best part is that despite that whopping issue-count…the cover price is STILL ONLY $19.99. And truthfully, I felt the need to buy this one in-store because so few volumes carry such a REASONABLE, respectable ratio of price-and-content.

I’ve no doubt that a Marvel volume of this size/this many issues would be at MINIMUM $34.99 if not $39.99. Of course, for Marvel, that’d be a “mere” $3/issue contained within as opposed to the seeming “standard” of $4-$5/issue contained.

This volume works out to about $1.54/issue…which is LESS THAN COVER PRICE for the individual issues it contains. Truly a benefit of the format, and a large part of what draws me in: the bargain of having en entire story or run of issues in a single volume…at a better price than the single issues. All the more as these issues are from the mid-1990s so nearly 20 years old and (at least in my experience) not the easiest to come by in bargain bins.

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These new editions are becoming a larger part of my overall Hellblazer library. With many of these replacing 2-3 prior volumes, I’m also liking how the collection is shaping up with the thicker volumes instead of a bunch of skinny little things.

I’d thought this 9th volume wasn’t going to replace anything, but then realized that the first issue of the collection–#84–wraps up the material reprinted in the Hellblazer: Rare Cuts volume. At the time, that volume had stuff that hadn’t previously been reprinted, but it was primarily from the earliest part of the series–and these editions have filled in the gaps that Rare Cuts had tried to fill.

With this volume carrying to #96, I figure volumes 10 & 11 will be completely “new” content to my collection, with Son of Man picking up at #129. With several months between volumes, that won’t be something to worry about until next year sometime.

What’s going to be particularly “interesting” to me is when (if?) these catch up to where I “joined in” around #160/161 or so; or just as much a few issues earlier with the start of Azzarello‘s run.

Recent Ultimate Spider-Man Acquisitions

Over the last several weeks, I actually came across a couple volumes of the Ultimate Spider-Man oversized hardcovers that I’d thought long since out of reach, at least barring very specific hunting.

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I came across vol. 9 at a sale at Comic Heaven recently; and about a week later discovered vol. 6 on the sale table as well. I ordered the Death of Spider-Man “omnibus” last weekend, having found it for just under 50% cover price INCLUDING shipping.

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I’m now “only” missing volumes 7 & 8 from having the complete run. Yet, I don’t want to pay full cover price, ideally…and certainly no intention of paying significantly ABOVE cover price JUST because the darned things are “out of print.”

Still…it’s a new short-term “goal” for my collection, and a bit of a challenge given the volumes are several years out of print and not simply in-stock online for “easy” purchase.

Dropping a Comic Because of the Art

I hesitantly checked out the first Johns/Romita Jr. issue of Superman this summer, and thought I’d give it a chance, even though I wasn’t particularly thrilled with the art. I figured it would grow on me.

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I’m done.

I’m interested in the STORY but while I may not be an artist myself, I know what I do and do not like, even if I can’t typically pinpoint it.

But this week, in the latest issue (#35) I pinpointed it in this particular case. Just within a couple pages, we have at least four different people in the darned costume with varying facial structure, visual definition, and necks!

I get that there are issues of “perspective” and “angles” and all sorts of other stuff that I–as Not-an-Artist–am not gonna “get” here.

But I obviously don’t like the visual style, don’t like the way Superman (in this example) is drawn, the inking/coloring can’t get past that, and I definitely don’t like Ulysses’ look (though that could be given a pass where Superman is a far more familiar character to me).

Johns has me for the story…but the art–for me–is just such a turnoff that I’m done. This isn’t some self-contained series like All-Star Superman was. This is simply THE Superman book, but the costume is just a costume to me, if the character isn’t recognizable facially.

Vote with my wallet, right?

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