50 cent finds: Planet Comicon 2012

I’m at an odd point with my comic “want” list. I’ve already got the majority of back issue comics I want for my collection, and the rest are either too hard to find (I’m talking to you, Farscape and Savage Dragon), too pricey for their reading value (Hulk #102), or both (Aparo’s backups in the Ditko Captain Atom comics from the 60s). Still, a 50 cent box is hard to pass up– especially if it’s not dominated by early-90s Image and Marvel output– and I found some fun titles waiting for me at last weekend’s PlanetCon

Marvel Mystery Comics #1 (Marvel, 1999): Though a hodge-podge of stories from various golden age comics, it featured better restoration results than many of their “commemorative” reprints have had.

Batman #526 (DC, 1996): Picked up because of the JH Williams III artwork. While serviceable, it showed none of the design sensibilities he’s become so well-known for, and that would be on much better display in the following year’s Batman Annual #21.

Marvel Two-in-One #37-38 (Marvel, 1978): I’m a sucker for a good team up comic, and these issues (teaming the Thing with Matt Murdock then Daredevil) promised to be an entertaining two-parter. Though it tied in directly with the contemporary “FF no more” storyline, it turned out to be a three-parter. I’ll probably never figure out why the Vision is brought in to wrap it all up…

Super Dinosaur #1 (Image, 2011): I figured this was a good chance to give it a try, since I haven’t sampled it yet. Who knows, maybe it’ll be as good as “Axe Cop”!

Hulk #155 (Marvel, 1972): This copy wasn’t in the best of shape, but it’s always exciting to find a Hulk issue I’m missing to add to my collection.

Marvel Super-Heroes #34, 42-44 (Marvel, 1972-74): And it’s even more exciting to find these Hulk reprint comics, which seem harder to find than the originals! It’s really comic-geeky of me, but I enjoying comparing the original comics to the reprints (and to the Essentials, since they’ve passed MSH covers off as the original Hulk covers)…

Oni Press Color Special 2001 (Oni, 2001): It was okay, but it mostly reminded me how little I like Brian Bendis’ writing, in his tedious “parody” Powers story.

Hercules #9 (Charlton, 1969): While I may not stumble upon a lot of old Aparo artwork in the 50 cent range, I did with this title that featured his “Thane of Bagarth” backup strip.

Battle Classics #1 (DC, 1978): A Kanigher/Kubert military reprint, published as part of the brief “DC Explosion”.

Little Dot Dot-Land #42 (Harvey, 1969): As I get older, I find myself drawn to old kids comics. Not out of some kind of nostalgia (I “graduated” pretty quickly to DC and Marvel), but for the simplicity and clarity of their artwork, something I wish I could pull of better in my own work.

Heroes & Legends 1997 (Marvel, 1997): I enjoyed the earlier one (a take on Fantastic Four Annual #3, using an all-star cast of past and then-current artists), but this Avengers story doesn’t have as many hands involved. Still, with Buscema, Ditko, Kane, and Palmer involved, it can’t be all bad!

Skeleton Key v. 2 #3 (Slave Labor, 1999): I only recently stumbled upon the fact that Andi Watson did a second volume of the series! Gives me something new to look for as I finish it out…

50centeBatman #644/Detective Comics #811 (DC, 2005): Picked these up for the Jim Aparo obituary that was supposed to be in them. Sadly, DC didn’t give him the kind of biographical send-off they used to provide when their stalwarts died. Still, it was a good drawing– retouched from, oddly enough, one of the first Brave & Bold issues I ever owned (#113)…

Doc Savage #16 (DC, 2011): I always enjoyed this character, and with DC no longer using the rights to the man of bronze, it’s unlikely to ever be collected in a trade edition.

I didn’t spend all my time bottom-feeding through the back issue bins, though. I picked up a few Amelia Rules! and Futurama comics I was missing, the latest issue of Bobby Bierley’s Yellow, a few nicely-priced trades, a Shazam! treasury from 1973, and a Brian Hurtt sketch in my copy of The Damned. All in all, a pretty good time, though next year I really should get an artist alley table for the show…

5 thoughts on “50 cent finds: Planet Comicon 2012

  1. You know, I’m pretty lousy about self-promotion. I attend so few shows where I’m not behind the artist table that I didn’t think about it. I should at least have done something for Mike Norton; maybe he would have reciprocated my link to Battlepug! I’ll definitely remember your tip for next time, Keith!


  2. My Smeary Soapbox sense knew you had a new entry up and you did! I rarely stumble upon dollar bins anymore, but you are so right about the flood of 90’s Image stuff usually lurking within. Sounds like you got an interesting selection, too! I have a fondness for Little Dot and Little Lotta. If I stumbled upon a box of Harvey, Archie, and assorted kid comics I would be in comic book nerd heaven! So was SUPER DINOSAUR as good as AXE COP?


  3. SD wasn’t bad– think of an egotistical Jonny Quest with a dinosaur for a sidekick. I can tell Kirkman was introducing elements to make Derek Dynamo more sympathetic, but of the three all-ages comics Image debuted last year (SD, Reed Gunther, and Gladstone’s School for World Conquerors) the bear-riding cowboy is the one for me! Plus, Kirkman is getting enough of my money with his new Thief of Thieves series…


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