For years, I’ve wanted my own comic shop but I don’t have the first idea as to where to start. I’ve read into taxes, vendor numbers, distributors, started making a business plan, researching what’s hot/not, reading more diverse range of comics, and speaking to other comic dealers. Should I have a store front or a “virtual” store front? I get lots of advice (some saying “go for it” and others giving me that cock-eyed James Dean “what are you thinking?” look). However, no one has a simple answer (which I know I’m not going to get). Is there any “how-to” method, book, or even support group for those of us who love comics but don’t know how to go about starting up our own store?
Ken, I’m sure there are a lot of people reading this column who would be willing to give you advice on what or what not to do. In addition to listening to those folks who contact you directly (and those who forward their comments to me for the Feedback section of a future column), I’d suggest you visit Diamond Comics (New Accounts) and read what they have to say about the market, etc.
Why aren’t there any mystery mags any more? And where can I write to Cain the Caretaker?
— Nurse Melody, House of Lunacy email@example.com
Those classic non-horror horror comics of the 70s evolved into the Vertigo line of books at DC, but many folks still fondly recall such titles as HOUSE OF MYSTERY, HOUSE OF SECRETS, and THE WITCHING HOUR.
You can still write to Cain, Abel and the rest of the gang c/o Paul Levitz, DC Comics, 1700 Broadway, New York, NY 10019. I’m sure they’ll be happy to hear from you.
Why is Green Lantern’s ring ineffective against yellow, but Sinestro’s is capable of working against green objects?
— Steve Kolton (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Green Lantern is powerless against yellow objects because of “a necessary impurity in the ring.” Sinestro’s ring was created in the other-dimensional Qward. Just because it utilizes yellow energy does not mean it would work as an opposite to GL’s ring.
A few months back, CrossGen ran some rather nice ads for Coca-Cola featuring CrossGen. Aside from Disney characters and Superman, what other comic book characters have been featured in non-comic-related product ads? Dignified ads I mean. Not Twinkies.
— Greg Plantamura (email@example.com)
“Not Twinkies”?!? They (along with Hostess Cupcakes and Fruit Pies) provided the longest-running pitchman career for comic book characters in the history of the medium. But, if we leave them out of the mix, what else is there?
Hmmm, I recall an ad for a Spider-Man fishing reel. And a few of the heroes appeared in the “Got milk?” campaign. (That’s a perfect fit after years of pushing cupcakes, don’t you think?)
“And maybe if I continue to pound home the idea that most old comic books are not worth a fortune, people might get it.” Hey! My old comic books are worth a fortune… to me!
— David H. Rangel (Badp@netzero.net)
That’s how it should be, David. You reinforce the point I’ve been making all along, that old comic books are worth what someone is willing to pay for them. If you collection were damaged or destroyed, would you be willing to pay a fortune to replace them? It would certainly seem so.
Regarding the 80/90’s proposed “Batwoman” series, could this possibly be referring to the short lived SCARLETT series, which was promoted as a reworking of Batgirl? The series followed a red-headed Vampire Hunter (providing the ‘Bat’ link), and ran for about 9 issues.
— Daniel Fish (firstname.lastname@example.org)
…The Batwoman book was being developed by officemates Mike Gold and Denny O’Neil; the character was to be called Vespertillia (sp.?). As recently as this year, Denny still talks about getting back to the concept, so one never knows.
— Bob Greenberger
Thanks, Bob. Now that Denny’s on the mend after his heart attack and surgery, maybe he’ll get the chance to follow up on the project.
You probably recall hearing about him on our DCHistory yahoo group, where we discussed that as late as the JSA run in ADVENTURE, it was implied that there was no Earth-2 Aquaman. However, Roy Thomas included one in a handful of group shots in ALL-STAR SQUADRON.
…If memory serves, the Earth-2 Aquaman made his first and only appearance in the last issue of All-Star Squadron that featured the heroes on Earth-2 (possibly issue 60?). Aquaman showed up for the group portrait of the heroes right before the Crisis wave changes time and he and the other Golden Age duplicates were literally removed from the picture.
— Howard Margolin (Doctor OHM@aol.com)
…Yep, there was indeed an Earth-2 Aquaman, I believe distinguished visually by having yellow, rather than green, gloves. However, I believe he sets the record for least seen Earth-2 character version, at least after the Earth-1 and Earth-2 break was established. Aquaman appeared in one of the final issues of ALL-STAR SQUADRON, the last to feature the entire team (the actual last few issues burned off various ASS characters origin stories probably originally intended for SECRET ORIGINS). Aquaman showed up at the Perisphere HQ of the Squadron just in time to be in a group photo of the whole bunch. Then the change wave from Crisis hit and when FDR was shown the photo Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Arrow, Speedy, Robin, and Aquaman had disappeared from it.
I believe Aquaman was mentioned in a few previous issues of ASS, but not actually shown until that effective last issue.
…In 1986, in one of his last pre-Crisis stories in ALL-STAR SQUADRON, Roy Thomas finally established that there WAS an Earth-2 version of the character (with the explanation that he had missed previous All-StarSquadron meetings because he’d been at sea).
The next issue, Roy wiped out everyone’s memories of the Golden Age versions of the “Big 3” heroes, plus Green Arrow and the unfortunate Aquaman. THAT ought to teach him to be late for meetings!
…Axis Amerika, the main villains of YOUNG ALL-STARS, were copies of the heroes that disappeared from Golden Age/Earth-2 history. Ubermensch/ lesser-powered Superman. The Great Horned Owl / Batman. The Bat/ Robin. Gudra the Valkyrie/ Wonder Woman. Usil the Golden Archer/ Green Arrow. AND Seawolf, who was Aquaman.
…Although It has not been definitively stated, Neptune Perkins of the Young All-Stars (and an actual Golden Age character) was setup to replace Arthur as the Golden Age Aquaman. It’s a nice fit, too, as Neptune Perkins only had two GA appearances, FLASH COMICS #66 and #81.
Thanks to everyone above and all the other folks who wrote to remind me of the Earth-2 Aquaman’s appearance in ALL-STAR SQUADRON and provide additional information on the topic.
ONE WORD ANSWERS DEPARTMENT:
Will Ghost Rider ever get a new ongoing series?
— Thomas Simms (email@example.com)
Can you get for me UNCANNY X-MEN #266?
What is the familial relation, if any, between Sal Buscema and the late John Buscema?
Harry Tzvi Keusch (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Who owns the rights to the Golden-Age Blue Beetle? Every so often, this topic pops up on the DC message board but no one ever answers it conclusively.
Who is the girl friend of Casper?
Wendy (the Good Little Witch).
Do you recall the Steve Englehart story that he began in Avengers and finished in JLA? (Must’ve slipped by Julie!)
Do you have a value list for POGs?
Did Jim Carrey ever star in X-FILES episode?
I understand that X-Men’s writer plays Solid Snake. I can’t find a picture or bio on him. Could you send me a helpful website please?
— Ben (Num1jamer@hotmail.com)
Could you give me the requirements of the Dog Care merit badge?
Do you know where I can find info about the actual ship Titanic for my history homework?
— cazo (email@example.com)
Encyclopedia (under “T”).
Would fan feedback help to get a TPB of ‘Mazing Man printed? To whom should we direct our requests?
— Stephen Kolton (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Maybe. DC President & Publisher Paul Levitz. (Okay, that was more than one word, but we’re talking about ‘Mazing Man!)
JUST BECAUSE I SAID IT DOESN’T MEAN IT’S TRUE DEPARTMENT:
Are you sure that Leonardo DaVinci invented the scissors? I think they had them in ancient Egypt, around 300 B.C. We were discussing this at work and someone has found sources stating that there were scissors in Egypt and in other ancient civilizations. Are you talking about modern scissors – maybe DaVinci improved the design??
— Christine (email@example.com)
Well, according to a source I found, the first scissors that have been discovered date back to ancient Egypt in 300 B.C. The modern design of cross-bladed scissors came from Rome around 100 B.C. And the first cast-steel scissors were manufactured in England in 1761. So much for erroneous Fun Facts To Know & Tell, eh?
FUN FACT QUESTION OF THE WEEK DEPARTMENT
What is considered to be the first color motion picture?
From http://www.filmsite.org comes the following…
One of the first ‘color’ films was Thomas Edison’s hand-tinted short “Annabell’s Butterfly Dance.” Two-color (red and green) feature films were the first color films produced, including the first two-color feature film “The Toll of the Sea,” and then better-known films such as “Stage Struck” (1925) and “The Black Pirate” (1926). It would take the development of a new three-color camera, in 1932, to usher in true full-color Technicolor.
The first film (a short) in three-color Technicolor was Walt Disney’s animated “Flowers and Trees” (1932) in the Silly Symphony series. In the next year, Disney also released the colorful animation – “The Three Little Pigs” (1933). In 1934, the first full-color, live-action short was released – “La Cucaracha” (1934).
Hollywood’s first full-length feature film photographed entirely in three-strip Technicolor was Rouben Mamoulian’s “Becky Sharp” (1935) – an adaptation of English novelist William Makepeace Thackeray’s Napoleonic-era novel Vanity Fair. The first musical in full-color Technicolor was “Dancing Pirate” (1936). And the first outdoor drama filmed in full-color was “The Trail of the Lonesome Pine” (1936).
That will do it for this week. Don’t forget my daily Anything Goes trivia at http://www.wfcomics.com/trivia and I’ll see you back here in seven days.
Need some answers from the Answer Man?
Ask BobRo at It’s BobRo’s Answer Board.
Copyright ? 2000 to 2003 by Bob Rozakis. All Rights Reserved.