I am a huge comicbook fan, but I don't have the energy to keep up with all of the newest releases, I'd rather stick to the classics.
Based on the fact that you're reading an article about comicbooks, I think it's fair to assume that you are a comicbook reader. Perhaps you've just started out, and you're not really too sure where to start. Or, perhaps, you've been reading them a while now, and you only clicked this link because I shared it in a Facebook group.
One thing that many people who read comics tend to do is always try to keep up with the latest issues, to follow their favourite heroes' every footstep, to buy each issue the day it comes out. I, however, am not among those people.
Although I love a good comicbook (I don't particularly dislike a bad one to be honest), here are 5 reasons why I am so relaxed about what I read.
5 Reasons Why I Don't Keep Up With Modern Comics
- There Are Some Really Good Older Reads
- I Can Read the Reviews Before Buying
- It Gets Very Expensive
- It's Time-Consuming
- If You Take Something Too Seriously, It Stops Being Fun
1. There Are Some Really Good Older Reads
I have to confess, I rarely go to my comicbook shop anymore. Although it's a fantastic little shop, I have a gap year coming up and I need to save up the pennies for that.
However, when I do go, I often find myself rummaging though the 50p section to find myself a cheap read. The comicbooks in the 50p section are obviously never new, and most of them from the early noughties or late nineties.
As I writer myself, I believe that the most important part of any comicbook is the storyline and the way it's written, it doesn't particularly matter if something was written last week or last century, if it has a strong storyline that combines with the artwork to connect you to another world, it's done its job. As a cheapskate, if I can get that for 50p, even better!
2. I Can Read the Reviews Before Buying
I'm going to assume that you have it, and you know how to use it.
The internet has made many advancements to the comicbook industry. You can now download comicbooks straight to your electrical devices (for free if you know the right websites), order a paper one to be delivered, find people you can work with to create your own, and read reviews of them—be that on social media/ forums or websites such as Goodreads or Amazon.
Isn't it better to read bad reviews and not buy something than to not read any reviews, and then buy it, just to discover it's rubbish!
If you're concerned about making sure you have the latest comics, you don't allow the comicbook to be out long enough for people to write reviews about it.
3. It Gets Very Expensive
As I mentioned earlier, I am a bit of a cheapskate. That's why I love the 50p section at my local comicbook store, and why I often download comicbooks from free websites.
When they first come out, every comicbook (by the big 2 at least) costs about £3. Considering each storyline occupies about 10 comicbooks, one story will cost you between £20–£30, perhaps more for certain stories. Waiting for a storyline to finish and then come out in graphic novel form is always going to be cheaper than buying each issue individually every week.
Most comicbook shops will have a bargain bin of some sort, but if yours doesn't, or you don't have a local comicbook shop, then Amazon and eBay have got some brilliant second-hand comicbooks and graphic novels.
4. It's Time-Consuming
Most of us either have full-time jobs, or are still in full-time education.
Personally, I work full time at a hotel, and on top of that I have a gap year to organise, a freelance writing career which I'm trying to get off the ground, I go the gym regularly, I like to read books (ones without pictures), I like to get involved with the political party that I support, I quite like going clubbing, and like to do new things whenever I get the opportunity.
With all these things going on in my life, I simply don't have the time to always be trying to catch up with my favourite superheroes, and keeping on top of what's happening in the Marvel or DC universe.
If something is worth reading, then I will get to it when I get to it. That might be a good few years after the stories are first published, but I don't have a problem with that!
5. If You Take Something Too Seriously, It Stops Being Fun
Often in this blog, I talk about comicbooks like they are a form of art which take intelligence and creativity to produce. There's a reason for that—they are!
The comicbook is a combination of 2 different types of art; literature and drawing/painting. As you were probably taught my your English teacher, writing a good story involves understanding the writing techniques and combining them with your own imagination. And although I was never very good at art myself, I understand that it involves an enormous amount of skill.
That being said, no matter how difficult art is to produce, or how skilled you need to be to create it, the purpose of art is pleasure. Art is created to be enjoyed.
If you take any form of art so seriously, that it stops being gratifying, you've kind of defeated the whole purpose.
If you want to be one of those people who always try to read your favourite comicbooks the day they come out, then feel free. But personally, I have found that treating comicbooks like a hobby, rather than a life mission, to be a much cheaper and much more fun way to read them.
© 2017 FrederickColbey
Nathan Kiehn on October 09, 2017:
Yeah, I've definitely considered myself a moderate follower of comics generally. I went through a period of purchasing Amazing Spider-Man issues as they came out, but with the book being released three times a month at the time, it just wasn't financially feasible. I'm not up to date on pound-to-dollar transactions, so I can only speculate as to the burden on your wallet. I did buy one ASM volume while in England, but I don't recall the price.
I also find that publishers will often release paperback or hardback volumes at a fairly rapid pace. Why spend the three months agonizing over when an issue's going to be released when I can just get the whole story line in volume a little later down the line?
I agree with your points completely. Cool analysis and nice summary.