Comics and Me

I tell people that when it comes to comics, "I am conversant, but not fluent." What I mean by that is that I am familiar with most of the mainstream superheros (and a few lower tier ones), but I don't regularly follow them on a monthly basis.

I remember as a child visiting my aunt and her family. In their home were dozens of comics, featuring characters from both DC and Marvel, and I read them all for years.  I discovered Superman, Batman, Spider-Man, the Avengers, and many others for the first time this way. From this humble introduction, I watched the Super Friends as a Saturday morning cartoon and the Incredible Hulk and Wonder Woman as live action network TV shows.

As I grew older, I supplemented my awareness of comic book heroes by buying certain books (Spider-Man was always a favorite), or picking up used copies of others.  As a science fiction fan, I enjoyed Marvel's serialization of the original Star Wars film, even though they lost me in the following stories by introducing a giant bipedal rabbit, a character called (no kiddding!) Don-Ki-Ho-Tay and retelling the plot of The Seven Samurai. When I was in high school, I became a fan of Ambush Bug's limited run and early stories of Groo the Wanderer.  Once I discovered role playing games (rpgs), I became fascinated by the world of the Warlord and the limited run of the Car Wars game tie-in comic, Car Warriors.  Also, when I was in college, I discovered a hardback graphic novel of the original Dark Knight, The Shadow (which now has a treasured place in my library).

My late college years and early married life saw me leave the world of four-color heroes for a while, although they always had a special place in my heart.

With the success in recent years of superhero films, however, I find myself being slowly drawn back in.  I doubt that I will ever be a collector of major superheroes, but I might have a few issues of the Shadow laying around, and I will always keep informed of many of the storylines featured in the books due to my on-line relationships with people who are collectors or are otherwise far more fluent than I will ever be.

Future entries related to comics will include reviews of some digital comics that I have acquired, as well as books I have in my library that seek to analyze the genre through a lens of faith.

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