Sometimes there’s a beauty in even the ugliest comic.

§ March 25th, 2015 § Filed under golden age § 11 Comments

Sure, this copy of Venus #10 (1950) has seen its share of hard times, but there’s a certain amount of character in a comic in “Poor” or “Fair” condition that a “Near Mint” copy can never quite achieve:

11 Responses to “Sometimes there’s a beauty in even the ugliest comic.”

  • DanielT says:

    I agree so hard with this. I spent last year buying up almost all the giant reprint issues DC put out in the 60s and 70s (100-page, 80-page, etc) and I deliberately went for lower grades. And not just because of price, but because issues like that should feel like they’ve been read.

    Also, I bought the remastered version of the first volume of Cerebus. It’s a great looking thing, with crisp white paper and noticeably improved printing. But, man, I still kept my original volume purchased 30+(!) years ago even with its browned pages and less crisp printing because of that character thing.

  • philfromgermany says:

    I now actively avoid the lower grades in my spending habits as I really need one type of hindrance not to buy every comic I find interesting.
    Before that, I often looked at one of my worn and wrangled books and got all sad thinking to myself who could do such a horrible thing to such a priceless piece of history/art…

  • Michael Grabowski says:

    I paid $10 for a copy of Amazing Spider-Man #7 that will probably crumble into Ditko dust if I ever bring it out into the light to read but an affordable 1st-gen Spidey comic was a lovely thing to find and purchase.

  • Bully says:

    Not to mention: those Venus comics are seriously fun and completely mind-blowingly weird reads.

  • Thelonious_Nick says:

    I’m with you. I find there’s little that’s more charming than finding a little kid’s name or other writing on the pages of the comic (preferably in the margins not marring the art, though!). Evidence that you are not the first to enjoy this issue, and will probably not be the one who loved this issue best.

  • Walaka says:

    As one who kept his original collection in $5 salvaged metal file cabinet and old produce boxes (short- and long-boxes having not been invented yet), I can only agree with the sentiments here, since that’s what most of my stuff must have looked like.

  • philip says:

    Piling on! I almost exclusively scour the bargain bins (so few are a quarter anymore) at comic shops and conventions looking for damaged treasures. There is something fun about reading a dog-eared, loose-stapled, possibly vandalized old comic. I also don’t feel compelled to treat it like a holy relic, and I can leave them out around the house for anybody to pick up and read.

  • ExistentialMan says:

    Mike, you are the Poet Laureate of funnybooks! I have several long boxes of beat-up and coverless comics I picked up at flea markets in the 70’s and 80’s. Every month, I grab a handful and bring them into my classroom. Most of the students browse through a few pages and return them sheepishly to the pile because they just don’t get it. The ones that do, however, well…that’s pure magic.

  • Old Bull Lee says:

    Yellowed paper=history.

  • Snark Shark says:

    “but there’s a certain amount of character in a comic in “Poor” or “Fair” condition that a “Near Mint” copy can never quite achieve”

    Also, that’s the only condition I can AFFORd for those pre-1970’s books!

    “I almost exclusively scour the bargain bins (so few are a quarter anymore”

    Yup, it’s the dollar boxes now!

  • yrzhe says:

    “The Plot that Failed” sounds like a perfect title for an awful lot of comics.