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Last Week’s Mega-Haul – Week of December 09, 2015

last_weeks_haul_1209fIn the wake of a seeming random 50% off sale that rolled into a “Black Friday Week” sale at the local comic shop (that saw stuff go from 50 to 60 to 70 to 80 to 90% off on successive days, the remnants wound up as “Dollar Table” items.

And as is usually the case, for the price, I was more than willing to buy a few extra things beyond “just” my usual comics for the week…

And consequently, I more than doubled my library of RPG supplement books, while making the “regular” new comics seem prohibitively expensive by comparison, certainly an extremely poor value compared to the bargain table stuff.

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Along with a randomish-ly purchased Munchkin issue (reviewed the other day) and the latest Constantine: The Hellblazer issue, I got a couple other X-Men volumes at cover price…and largely cleared out the gaming books from the bargain table.

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Considering Lensman had a steep sticker price…and was here for “only” $1…absolutely worth checking out. The FantasyCraft volume also looked interesting, and for $1…and its sheer size and being a hardcover? Certainly worth getting. And the D&D book…ditto. Then, of course, would be a shame to pass on the Civil War volume for $1, if I’d ever wind up with the main volume. And for $1 apiece, the Smallville books were a no-brainer…particularly my being on a relative Superman kick of late.

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And then because they were there, and it’s D&D and only $1 so why not?…cleared out the D&D supplement volumes.

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I definitely remembered seeing the Dragon Magazine Annual volume a couple weeks earlier and being mildly curious…an Annual for a magzine, published to fit right in with other supplemental volumes…definitely cool! (I’m a fan of such things!)

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And Eberron is a name I’m familiar with from sometime down the years… and then Menzoberranzan and Dark Sun are both names I’m QUITE familiar with from the Spellfire game from TSR back in the early days of collectible/trading card games.

All told, including the NEW comics, and tax, I paid slightly less than what any ONE of these hardcover supplement volumes would have cost at cover price. This spoils me, though, on the notion of buying additional volumes…but certainly “weights” things toward D&D Fourth Edition over any of the others!

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Gotta Be Kitten Me

After about half a year of waiting, I finally received a certain box at work. With other, smaller (but far more awesome) boxes within.

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Exploding Kittens has finally arrived.

‘Nuff said. (Though I’ll probably find more to say about it later.)

Lake Effect Comic Con Haul 2015

This weekend was the (I believe 6th) annual Lake Effect Comic Con in Mentor, OH at the Great Lakes Mall (specifically the Atlas Cinema). This is a local one-day show, primarily a "dealer’s room," but also an Artists’ Alley, and a small slate of events–a couple panels, a costume/cosplay contest, etc. The event is organized by the owner of Comics and Friends, a comic shop in the mall (that I find it hard to believe has been there so long now!)

I’ve been to at least 4 of these now, with varying degrees of luck finding stuff I’m looking for. One year I found a bunch of X-Men and Valiant stuff; another year I happened across an X-Men omnibus for 60% off cover minutes after walking in and bought it and walked out before I could spend more money. I believe it was last year I scored several action figures I’d been looking for.

I went in hoping to find a discounted Thanos vs. Hulk paperback or X-O Manowar deluxe hardcover vol. 1 and barring those, perhaps a Thanos Mighty Mugg or perhaps the Hulkbuster Iron Man Marvel Select, or maybe some cool quarter-bin issues or Power Rangers blind-box mystery vinyls, etc. Sadly, the only real bargain bins I saw were Comic Heaven and I have access to that store anytime I’m (frequently) in the area.

But one dealer had a bunch of old toys, mostly loose, as well as several classic board games…and Munchkin.

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I’ve been putting the newer Munchkin Legends in my cart at Target and then jettisoning the thing before I check out for over a year, and often considering some of the expansions elsewhere when I come across them (and not getting those for lack of having the core/original game).

Finding this "classic edition" for only $12 was a great find, and means I can at least play the game itself.

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I came across this Minimates Enterprise (with Captain Kirk) and picked it up, put it back, picked it up again, put it back, walked away, and then back to actually get it. Despite being a Star Trek fan, until now I’ve never actually had an Enterprise, and for the price (and the branding), I decided this is worthwhile and will definitely get some shelf space.

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There’s also the coolness factor for me that it’s the Original Series and not based on the new movies version. While I like the new movies, I like the "classic" stuff and it seems there’s much more available than for the new films.

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And I was recently remembering the classic/original Pokemon stuff, and finding the complete original mini-series for only $3 was well worthwhile.

With these three items, I figured I had spent enough and didn’t need to go looking for more to spend money on just for the sake of spending money; and since I hadn’t really seen anything particularly eye-catching or promising…that was that.

I was in and out in under a half-hour, spending only about what I’d usually spend in a typical weekly comic shop run, so I did well, and walked out with half my "budget" still in-pocket, which itself can now go to this week’s new comics.

Favorites of Walt: The Comic Shops #11 – Kenmore Komics & Games

Though Collector’s Palace was a shop I passed every single day on my way to and from work; once I started my current job, I opted back in December ’07 to see if there were any comic shops near work, as work was a good distance away from my then-current apartment, and would be enough excuse to visit the surrounding area outside my home area.

Using the Comic Shop Locator service, I found Kenmore Komics & Games, and stopped by the store one day after work. I liked the selection of new issues, back issues, their large collected edition stock, and their gaming and miniatures selection. Before long, I’d started a habit of hitting Kenmore for my new comics, which pretty much phased Collector’s Palace out of the picture. When I moved to my current apartment in 2008, Kenmore became my primary comic shop.

This past summer I finally decided to throw in with them, and opened a pull list at Kenmore, making it my first true ‘comic shop home’ since Capp’s.

Kenmore has of course become my favorite comic shop. Though occasionally they’ll sell out of something before I even get there on Wednesday, the pull list has alleviated that, and they usually restock such issues within a week. I’ve also learned that I can shoot them an email, and they’ll add such requests to my pull bag.

They have a great selection of back issues, and I do occasionally poke through ’em when I think of some random back issue I’m particularly interested in; mostly when they’re having a sale.

They usually have a couple months’ worth of recent issues on the shelves, grouped by DC, Marvel, Other, and Vertigo/mature audience books. They also have a kids’ section right when you walk into the store, which holds primarily Archie books as well as Boom/Disney comics and collected editions, as well as the Marvel all ages books and the Johnny DC/DC Kids books.

Their collected edition stock is pretty impressive, and often I at least check them out to see what an edition looks like, even if I can’t afford to buy it at full retail price and order from Amazon or such.

Kenmore also has a bargain table, with many of the greatest bargains I’ve found. A couple years ago, I picked up several runs–X-Force, JLA, The Ray, and others when they’d acquired a collection and were just selling the runs as sets. They also maintain several longboxes as a bargain bin section. About half of one box is dollar comics; the rest are all 25-cents. Most of the time, the bargain bins are fairly random, though occasionally there are some real treasures and runs to be found. Last year, I scored a couple copies of Spawn #1, Superman #75, and most of a 100-issue run of Wolverine as well as most of the Young Justice run. They also routinely have random collected editions on the table for bargain prices. I picked up a large run of a manga series for 25 cents/book, and a couple months ago there were hundreds of old Archie Digests where I wish I’d had the money to buy ’em all. As it was, I bought about $5 worth, randomly grabbing mostly double-digests.

They also have an annual sale around Black Friday/early December where the bargain table becomes a clearance table, and the 25-cent bins become 10-cent bins, and plenty of stock is added to the tables beyond usual fare.

The store owner particularly endeared the place to me when the Batman and Son TPB came out back in ’08 or so. I’d been interested in the story, but was waiting for the paperback release, not wanting to pay the hardback price. When I went to check out, he asked me if I’d be interested in the hardback–he’d sell it to me for the price of the paperback. Once assured he wasn’t pulling my leg, I took him up on that.

The owner is one of the most friendly/personable people I’ve found running a comic shop, and he’s great at working with his customers to make ’em happy–not because they demand it or ask it, but he seems to know simply how to do it (as with my example above about the Batman book).

I’ve also bought several boxes here, as they’ll occasionally sell "used" boxes for $1.50.

Most recently (as of this writing)–the last week of January 2011–they had a random sale of Marvel hardcovers (not the oversized hardcovers, but the "regular sized" ones–"Premiere Edition" and "Premiere Classic" volumes mostly). Flat $10/book…which sucked me in more than I’d’ve preferred…but to get $25-$30 hardcovers for $10 each was a steal on the whole.

All in all…I’d be hard-pressed to find another shop quite like this one…and any other shop that might down the line ever become a "home" for me will have a LOT to live up to.

NEXT WEEK: JC Comics and Cards.

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