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Sunday, June 19, 2005

My Weekend, by Dorian A. Wright, age 30 

It's starting to look as if Last Hero Standing is out-selling House of M in our neck of the woods. It may very well turn out to have been a bad idea to cut orders as drastically as we did on the fourth and fifth issues.

I won't know for certain until I have a chance to look at our inventory cycle-sheets, but if so, I'm really curious as to why our customers are embracing a Contest of Champions via Spider-Girl mini over the big mega summer cross-over event orchestrated by Brian Michael Bendis. Or did I just answer my own question?

Dear Parents of twelve year old boys;

Twelve year old boys are not good baby-sitters. It's probably not in the best interests of either child to have your twelve year old son pushing his two year old sister around town in a baby carriage without adult supervision. Especially when he keeps trying to leave her outside the store by herself so that he can buy Star Wars comics.

(Dear readers, fret not, I gave the kid holy hell for even thinking about leaving her outside and made him bring her in. I'm kind of hoping his parents call to complain about me telling off their precious angel so that I can tell them what he was trying to do.)

It was observed recently at work that the art of Bart Sears is what you would get if you tried to draw something a teenage boy would think looked cool. In other words, it's what you would get if Rob Liefeld was trying to draw the way he does on purpose, instead of actually thinking he's doing a good, professional looking job.

This observation was prompted by the fact that we have a small section of art technique books in stock and the only ones that ever seem to cycle through are Best of How To Draw the Wizard Way and Making Your Comics Superficially Resemble Manga, but Anatomy for Beginners, How to Draw the Human Head and Perspective For Artists act as shelf-warmers.

I was asked which Batman trades are good "dark" stories. Setting aside that it's frigging Batman and almost everything featuring the character is going to be "dark," I mentioned Batman Year One, The Killing Joke, Broken City, Gothic, The Dark Knight Returns and The Long Halloween as good "dark" Batman stories and As The Crow Flies and Strange Apparitions as good super-heroey Batman stories. I didn't mention Hush, and tried to block it from my mind to be honest, and luckily the customer didn't mention it either.

But he bought a Powers trade after all that, so who knows what he really wanted.

Dear Customer Who Was Too Hip For The Room;

You're buying Superman: Godfall, Street Fighter and DarkStalkers.

You don't get to make fun of old Jimmy Olsen comics for being "stupid."

One of the little hypocrisies of our society that I notice quite often, because the store is across the street from a high school, is that although we as a culture have decided that sexualizing and exploiting children is wrong, nevertheless every weekend there are girl's standing at the corner of the high school in bikinis trying to get me to let them wash my car. And it's hypocritical because it's not only our culture once again saying one thing and then doing another, but it's a double standard, because you never see teenage boys in Speedos standing at that corner.

I can't make the double-standard complaint anymore. This weekend there were teenage boys, in Speedos, trying to get me to let them wash my car. So, I guess that's progress, of a sort.

Every day this week customers have waltzed into the store at the last possible second and lingered well past closing time. That's really rather annoying.

I've mentioned before that one of the reasons I don't think kids are really drawn to super-hero comics any more is that they aren't nostalgic for the things that were popular in the youth of their parents or grandparents. And that the only people who are really concerned about this are the ones who for some reason think that kids should be interested in the same things mommy or daddy liked when they were kids.

This week-end I witnessed a man essentially bully his daughter into buying a G.I. Joe comic. "Hey it's G.I. Joe! Daddy used to like G.I. Joe! You like G.I. Joe too, right? Come on, buy G.I. Joe. You know you like it. Come on, buy it. Look, you like G.I. Joe and you're going to buy it, all right."

Another observation made at work this week is that it was really a good idea on DC's part to let Grant Morrison do his Seven Soldiers project. Let's look at it this way, in exchange for letting Morrison do whatever he wants on seven properties no one at DC was really using anyway, DC now has seven new properties to shop around for exploitation in other media that they own outright. Mike and I can already see the high-concept pitches for two of these properties. Like, say, a Guardian movie: disgraced ex-cop finds redemption by becoming a super-hero. Or a Klarion the Witch Boy tv series: strange boy with magical abilities defeats mystical menaces as he travels the country, leaving those behind confused as to whether he's a good guy or a bad guy. Heck, I'd watch both of those.

Mike, while putting together a display of super-hero comics for a local library, when I challenge his choice of an Orion comic featuring Darkseid for inclusion: "Come on, all the kids know who Darkseid is!"

(It would have been funny if he was joking...)


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