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Friday, November 09, 2007

Little Series part 2

Here is the second part of how my collection is doing at the moment, things are coming to a close, that much is sure,my want list is ever decreasing and if I hadn't recently included Hulk 102 - 199 then it would have fit on a single page. The last series I'm collecting/completing are Batman, and a really small series/run called Weird War Tales.

Let's start with the big one, Batman. Most of you out there know that I'm a hardcore Marvel fan and only occasionally dip into the DC pool, in fact Legion of Superheroes and Batman are the only "core" titles I collect.
Batman is probably the most iconic figure in Superhero-dom, even surpassing Superman and Spider-man, everybody loves Batman, alas like I mentioned in a previous entry not all decades have treated Batman with the deserved respect and some runs are sloppy seconds.
Now when I set out to collect Batman, I decided to collect #200 through to #400 and started in the Summer of 2006, about 14 months or so later I'm almost finished. The Batman run took a little longer to collect than I anticipated due to the fact that I never managed to score a run larger than 10 books and mostly bought book per book.At the moment I need 6 more issues, and none are really expensive or hard to find, I just have to stumble on someone that has more than one for sale, as I'm not going buy these book per book and end up paying $11.00 shipping everytime I find a $5.00 book or something.
Now, in the Spring of this year I also decided to extend the Batman collection a bit as well, I'm still unsure if I'll collect Batman from issue #1 onwards to #199 as that would mean spending anywhere in the region of $75.000 to get all these books. But what I did decide was to go and collect all Joker covers, if I do decide to collect the entire series, I'll already have these and if I don't then I'll have some of the coolest Batman covers from the Golden, Silver and Brozen Age to spruce up my collection.

Here are the three latest Joker covers I bought this month

Now the other DC series I'm collecting is the much less heralded Weird War Tales. This horror-war themed series ran the entire Bronze Age up till 1982 and was one of the series I read as a kid because when I managed to find a store that sold comics, these were always left over...yeah it wasn't a very popular series. But I kinda like it, warts and all. Strange really as I don't care for horror or war comics, but somehow this title does entertain me. Now I'm only collecting a small run this time. I'm going for #75 through to #125, the last 50 books of the series. Mainly because I think the later stories are better and because of the Creature Commandos. Now issue #114 isn't a very good issue at all, art is run of the mill and the script has so much holes you could drive an 18-wheeler through it...but when I bought this book new it was the most coveted book in my possession. Probably because of the totally out of this world cover featuring Adolf Hitler getting freaked out by the Creature Commandos.

After re-reading it as an adult I came to the conclusion that the writer had no idea what he was doing and just tried using shock value to sell books. The books actually feature the CCs performing as circus freaks in a concentration camp (and then liberating it)
But when you are 13 years old, this is a cover that screams "forbidden fruit" and you feel guilty just reading it. And for that very reason all my friends wanted this book, I could have gotten any book in trade for it, even my friend J's Iron Man #150 (classic Dr Doom vs. Iron Man cover) which was our group's "got-to-have-book" (and only J had it). But I didn't cave and held on to my Weird War Tales, and I still have it.
I'm now 9 issues short of getting the run complete, I'm not going after them like I do my other books, but when I run into them I gladly pick them up for a buck or two a piece

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Friday, November 02, 2007

Little Series part 1

What's next after you've completed FF ? What's next after you've completed ASM ? What's next; what's next...Well for some reason something is always just around the corner to tickle my fancy and I hope something always will be. But it has to be something I'm 100% committed to, I could never collect something I'm not passionate about. And that's what I also collect the "little" series.

Now let's get some thing straight first, "little series" isn't really the most fitting name for the following titles, but it's the best I could come up with on the fly.I don't mean it as a disparaging or pejorative title, all of these series are excellent and some are even better (in certain runs) than the "bigger" series I've collected. I chose this particular moniker because I'm not going for the complete run this time. I have no desire to own everything from the first to the final issue, I just picked a certain (long) run to collect/complete and I thought today I would give you an update on how everything is working out so far.

I've confessed my love for old greenskin before, both comic- or original art-wise. There's just something about the Hulk I really like. I started out with the intent to collect Hulk #250 - #550, but this changed to #200 - #550. At the moment I only need three more issues out of the 350 to complete the quest. So I guess I can't really count this as a "little" series any more. A few weeks ago I bought Hulk #102, first issue in the series and like always lost my self control and have now decided to go for #102 - #550 and complete the entire series. Sometimes it's just stronger than me.
Of course this means I'll have to get another copy of that horrible, horrible overrated (but most expensive of all the Bronze Books) Hulk #181. I've owned three copies over the years and was always happy to sell them and buy better books with the money, but nobody said being a completionist would be easy.

Probably the fastest series I have ever (nearly) completed. I started collecting old winghead in March 2007 and now 7 months later I've collected 297 of the 301 books I was after. Meaning for those of you that read playboy during maths class that I just need 4 more issues to complete #100 - #400. I should finish this before the end of the year. From start to finish less than 9 months, I don't know what this says about me , but I'm glad I did it. It might sound strange, but with 300 issues I still consider this to be a "little series". After all there are about 180 more books (after #400) that I don't want/need/collect. So basically this is just a run, a big-ass run, but a run just the same

Ok, this might classify as the closest to a real "little series" possible. JIM counts 125 issues, but only the last 43 issues are of interest to me because Thor "starts" in Journey into Mystery #83 and ends in #125.
When I started collecting Thor last year I started at Thor #126 (which is the first issue in that series) and continued until issue #400. Deep down inside I knew one day I would go for the first 43 issues and this year I made a modest start. Modest because these early Silver Age books aren't exactly cheap. I still need 14 out of the 43 books, and alas the four most expensive ones aren't in my possession yet, but on the bright side, I did manage to get almost 30 books this year.

Stay tuned for Little Series part two..."the DC connection" in a few days time, including rants about Batman, Weird War Tales & Brave and the Bold

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