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The Weekly Haul – Week of September 5, 2018

I managed to keep this week reasonably small-ish, though definitely could have been a bit smaller still!

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With the Image TMNT series hard to find, this current run from IDW reprinting that series–and in color–is a HUGE treat! I’ve been aware OF the series and its events, but this is the first I’m getting to actually read them for myself. It’s a very interesting thing–I don’t know that I would LIKE the series in and of itself, but as the historical, finite thing that it is, I’m quite enjoying it.

Batman #54 is a one-off issue, and quite enjoyable in and of itself.

I enjoyed Leviathan #1 enough that I was curious for #2…whether I get this one read and what I’m thinking of it will determine if I continue with single issues.

I need to pull together all my single issues of Deathstroke for this vs. Batman story to actually read…definitely should have just waited for a collected volume at this point.

I’m inclined to wait for a collected volume on Adventures of the Super Sons as I’m ridiculously behind on the ongoing series let alone this new one…but I’d kick myself later having to play "catch up" if I don’t "keep up" with the singles.

And this True Believers issue of Marvel Knights Daredevil has a PARTICULAR bit of nostalgia for me: this was THE issue that got me INTO Daredevil. I’d been aware of the character–and past runs, such as Frank Miller‘s, and the then-more-recent Man Without Fear mini-series. But buying the new Marvel Knights premiere issue in August/September 1998 was the first time I’d bought Daredevil consciously/intentionally as a new/current issue!

Bonus in getting this edition essentially off the same rack (at Comic Heaven in Willoughby, OH!) that I got the original back in ’98.

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The newest issue of DC Nation is out. I do NOT like the old trick of emphasizing a character death…and I’m NOT gonna be happy if they kill off Tim Drake (again) or Kyle Rayner (again?). Seems lately that DC is pushing to follow Marvel, and senselessly killing off characters for "shock value" or such is one of those things that I’ve FELT has been MORE overdone by Marvel than DC.

And we have this week’s edition of Comic Shop News, and some sort of CBLDF publication Read Banned Comics.

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The other day, I’d stopped into Half-Price Books to take advantage of a 20%-off-your-entire-purchase sale. I couldn’t remember if I already had it, but for being cheaper than a Marvel #1 issue, snagged JLA: Crisis of Conscience. And then despite the RIDICULOUSLY HIGH price FOR THE Half-Price Books STORE CHAIN, bought this duplicate/extra/convenience copy of Secret Origins featuring Batman and The Mud Pack.

Then while shopping at Ollie’s (a bargain outlet), found this hardcover "archive" or "omnibus" of Bill & Ted’s Excellent Comic Book. Given this was at Ollie‘s and long past the publisher seeing any real value off its sale, I bought it–plus, it’s all or primarily reprinting old Marvel content from the 1990s…so I do not feel I’ve violated my personal avoidance of Boom! Studios stuff.

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I also snagged five Dragonlance novels and an extra/reading copy of Magic the Gathering: Invasion. Flat price plus the sale discount and each of these was significantly cheaper than any non-True Believers-edition Marvel comic.

Sadly, it turned out that I already had the Draconian Measures paperback…oops! But I’d rather pay less-than-$4 for a duplicate in such good condition than pass on it and find out I did NOT have it, and not be able to easily find it in good condition again without a major hunt.

I had the hardbacks already for the Margaret Weis Amber and ____ series but not these paperbacks.

All in all, a good week for comics, and books, if a bit expensive. But as usual…could have been a lot more expensive at full price on the HPB stuff!

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"Upgrading" and beyond: Priest’s Black Panther

black_panther_old_and_newOne key comic series for me during college was Priest‘s Black Panther. I’d first tried the series because of its part in the launch of Marvel Knights in Fall 1998, and kept up with it for a few issues. I was nearly ready to let it go–and posted something about that on an old usenet forum–and was convinced to try a couple more issues. The way I remember it, the very next issue was “that” one with the big revelation about why T’Challa actually joined with the Avengers…and I stayed with the series through the end of its run and even followed the short-lived The Crew that followed it.

While I have the entire series in single issues, I remember being thrilled to find the series in paperback (though I don’t remember these early volumes being QUITE so early–2001 based on the indicia). And I was QUITE disappointed when nothing else got collected beyond the first 12 issues, and when this series was basically ignored and “forgotten” for everything that’s come since.

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black_panther_one_volume_thicker_than_two_oldNow, in one single volume, we get 17 issues…five more than the previous two volumes combined. Which really makes this quite an “upgrade.” The two prior volumes collected 5 issues and 7 issues each. Though my photo doesn’t show it very effectively, the new volume IS thicker than the previous two, even with the extra set of covers. The old volumes are also noticeably of their time-period, as they’re from when Marvel tried to save money by shaving 1/8 inch black_panther_new_taller_than_both_oldoff the height of their publications to use less paper or something to that general effect.

This new volume also stands out as being another where after all those years, Marvel switched to a red box with white text for their logo instead of the red text on white box.

While I was left hanging with only the first twelve issues collected, with 17 issues or so per volume, three volumes would get us through the first 50 issues or so, and a fourth would be able to include The Crew as an extension of this series.

I’m definitely hoping the cover/title of this edition holds true: Black Panther: The Complete Collection by Christopher Priest.

Though an Omnibus or other hardcover series of collections would be preferred…I’ll gladly take this over nothing, and it sure beats the skinny little 6ish-issue collections.

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Despite the decade or so waiting, the price of this new volume is surprisingly well in-line (if not better value) than the originals. $15 and $17 got me 12 issues for $32; another $3 adds five more issues (the same quantity as the first $15!). Of course, I don’t recall what I paid for these originals, whether it was full cover price or a discount; given I’d’ve sworn I got them during grad school as they came out, but they seem significantly older.

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And of course, I paid significantly less than cover price by pre-ordering this from Amazon this time around.

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I doubt I’d care whatsoever about the Black Panther character if it wasn’t for this series. So while I’m shying away from Marvel‘s print products lately…stuff like this gets through on the nostalgia factor.

And being able to have the contents of two books in one with even more content, I’m actually glad to “upgrade” to have–hopefully–the entire series in nice-looking paperbacks that actually look like they go together, on the shelf…and AS a series, having numbering. Perhaps I’m odd, but I prefer the numbers, as it makes it more obvious this isn’t just a single contained story or volume…and the publisher has more “confidence” in it to give a number rather than just one skinny volume at a time with no apparent intent to go beyond the current.

Still…a  Black Panther by Priest omnibus would be quite a volume–even as two volumes–to sit on a shelf with the Classic Quantum and Woody volume.

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