“Suddenly, fifteen years later….”

§ December 5th, 2018 § Filed under suddenly... § 10 Comments

Yup, I have officially spent half of my comics retailing career blogging about comics in my free time, because clearly I wasn’t getting enough comics in my diet during regular business hours.

A big, big thanks to all of you folks out there in comics internet land who still read my site, even though there are more popular options than ol’ archaic blogging for wasting one’s time online pursuing funnybook material. But I’m still at it, and if you’re reading this, you’re still at it too, and for that I am very grateful.

Special thanks of course to my family, and my long-suffering girlfriend Nora, who have put up with the shame of not only having a blogger in their lives, but a blogger who owns a comic shop, too. OH, THE DISGRACE.

And as always, special thanks to my other pop culture blogging comrades-in-arms, both active and retired…and especially to Comics Blogger Numero Uno, Neilalien, but more about that character later.

So, this year…speaking of my store, it’s had its fourth anniversary, and I’m still open and selling comics and gaining and maintaining a customer base, and so that’s been working out pretty well for me, thankfully! This was also the year I marked my 30th anniversary of selling comic books for a living, which is about as startling to me as it probably is to you. Well, I guess it’s too late to enter that career as a deep sea diver…guess I’m stuck doing this.

The other big event this year was my ongoing issue with my health, where, after years of, well, not being very good to myself, everything finally started catching up to me. However, with some changes in diet and lifestyle, which were much easier than I expected they would be, I’ve managed to improve my health, lose weight, and just generally feel a heck of a lot better. I do have a lingering vision thing which is going to be directly addressed in just a few days (as I wrote about here) so with any luck that will be resolved (or well on its way to being resolved) soon, too.

Those changes in lifestyle don’t mean that I’ve slowed down in goofing off on the Twitters, where I talk about making sure my customers know where I stand on cinematic history:


…Or apparently puzzling them with my honesty:


Frankly, I think my idea here is brilliant and not at all disrespectful:


Sometimes my interactions with folks who walk in the door at my shop leave me wondering just where all the time has gone:


Of course, the passage of time has altered my involvement with my own passions:


The downside of owning a comic shop is, of course, that the collecting impulse never goes away:


My most popular (faved ‘n’ retweeted) tweet of the year was this one, where some people appeared to seriously think I was actually going to do this to my public-serving brothers and sisters:


But my favorite Twitter moment was getting my entry about watching Firestorm’s debut on the Super Friends cartoon retweeted by Firestorm cocreator Gerry Conway:


But it wasn’t just the Twitters where you could find my wit and wisdom…no friends, there was plenty of that right here, on this very web page you’re looking at right now. Amongst the usual Ends of Civilization and Sluggo Saturdays you could find the following entries for your education and delight:

DECEMBER 2017

I could have just rerun this same post a couple of weeks ago, I love blowing up background details like this, Cathy and Andrew – two great tastes that go great together, the ol’ “Photoshop this scan” thingie didn’t over like they used to do in ye olden blogging tymes but I still like it and it’s season appropriate again.

JANUARY 2018

Naked on the cutting nude room floor, for the love of God pick up your comic pulls at your local shop, I mean seriously a Superman series by Todd McFarlane would make all the money, I’LL GET YOU GILBERT GOTTFRIED FANS!!!

FEBRUARY 2018

Hey it’s the too-long Doomsday Clock review you were looking for, next best thing to a Sluggo Saturday is a Sluggo Valentine, they’re still drawing the cuffs but it’s almost totally an afterthought at this point, I dive deep on IDW’s Popeye variants, reboots and restarts and wedding specials oh my.

MARCH 2018

Sure here’s a page from the Pac-Man Activity Book, in which I totally solve the problem of comics numbering for all time…well okay I don’t, I still have plans for this site — BIG plans, my late birthday post (and oh crap I’m 50 next year…also I’m totally right about that jacket the dude in Krypton is wearing), oh yeah remember when we were all into trading cards, FOOLED BY A FAKE NO-PRIZE, Swampy toys and games, so they fixed the typo in the paperback but went and did the very same thing again.

APRIL 2018

Don’t forget my pal Kurt’s podcast, some prerelease Fantastic Four talk, Land of the Lost talk turns into the worst idea for a comic gimmick, the Secret Origin of Siri, really guys it was more than a thousand issues at that point, Sluggo has some words for people who don’t dig the new Nancy strip, more of that pog content you crave, I need a full run of this or a deluxe reprint hardcover right now.

MAY 2018

Your pre-Free Comic Book Day pep talk, and my pep talk after, and some more FCBD follow-up, so as it turns out that eye didn’t clear up on its own and I’m having surgery on it next week, some Magoos (1 2 3) and some doctors (1 2 3), Popeye’s terrible secret.

JUNE 2018

The scarcity of Miracleman #15 (and follow-up and more follow-up), the new Hulk comic is good, ordering comics then and now, s whole lotta war books, I give up pronounce “Constantine” however you’d like, good gravy back away from the camera Namor, a recent dive into DC animation, so long Harlan.

JULY 2018

The most patriotic Popeye ever, boy I sure was subtle with my Batman #50 commentary (and follow-up), so long Steve, those Walmart comics NOT DIGESTS (and what I thought of them once I actually had some in my hands), making the (comics) grade, boy this Titans show sure loves the f-word, I had a dumb Twitter joke go semi-viral (and also, more Batman #50 follow-up), MORE JUPITER COMICS HURRAH!

AUGUST 2018

Kirby + Ditko + Abominable Snowman = awesome, yeah we’re never getting a new reprint of this story, thia Popeye comic wasn’t entirely what I expected but it was still pretty great anyway, and just how were we exposed to Popeye anyhoo, the origin of Mike the Comics Retailin’ Man, Brother Power the Plant Elemental, it’s more Death of Superman talk – how do I do it, and then I go on about Knightfall, the great Jon Bogdanove.

SEPTEMBER 2018

THIRTY YEARS OF BEING IN COMICS RETAIL, here we go with the Death of Superman again, I’m glad to see the rest of the world is catching up to my love of Nancy and Sluggo, more old comics promo stuff, and even more, DC Universe streaming is giving me a revised opinion of Super Friends cartoons – they’re actually good, more DC Universe talk, this is the worst title for a discussion about Batman: Damned, the unexpected Dennis the Menace Winchester Mystery House variant, so long Norm.

OCTOBER 2018

The only Doomsday Clock #7 review you’ll read where it says “a good year for penises at DC Comics,” the best West Coast Avengers cover, probably spent more time defining parameters than I did providing answers, the scintillating sounds of Swamp Thing, let your freak British flag fly, I secured the site so much that I broke images in feeds — still working on it!

NOVEMBER 2018

Come for the Badger fan film, stay for MY GIANT HAND, catching up on comics I missed back in the ’80s, somehow I got away with writing an entire post about assembling comic boxes, so long Stan, MY GIANT HAND in exciting live video, I’m still getting a boatload of emails about this screen-used prop comic, if only I’d known I could have cornered the market on this rare catalog I assembled nearly decades ago, direct sales vs. newsstand variants talk.

DECEMBER 2018

Er, yeah, pretty much just my “eye problems” post.

Again, let me thank all of you for coming to this site of mine, whether you jumped on board today, or whether you were there on day one (and I know there’s a few of you still in that latter category). It’s been a lot of fun doing this, and I plan on continuing to do it as long as you’ll have me.

For reading all that, let me present to you Neilalien’s tribute to my 15th anniversary, including his funny tweet:


…the redesign of his profile page:

…and the redesign of his own website:


Well, shucks. That Neilalien is a swell cat.

Thanks, pals, and I’ll be back with more goodies in short order.

10 Responses to ““Suddenly, fifteen years later….””

  • Thom H. says:

    Congratulations, Mike! So many milestones this year.

    I hope PR is around for another 15 years because I love reading about comics history/trivia/shenanigans. Thanks for all the fun so far!

  • Madeline says:

    It’s hard to believe that I’ve been reading your blog off and on for 14 years (and not commenting because I’m weird and awkward like that). I’m glad you’re still at it! And also that I can follow you on Twitter for all my other Swamp Thing/Sluggo-related daily needs.

  • philip says:

    Progressive Ruin and The Comics Reporter are the only two comics sites I read. Spurgeon is very informative, but you are way more fun (also occasionally informative). Even when I took a years-long hiatus from regular comics buying, I still stopped by here every day to see what foolishness was transpiring.

    Mazel Tov, or something. I’ll keep reading for as long as you feel like writing.

  • Thelonious_Nick says:

    Congratulations on 15 years! I’ve been following you for at least a decade and I can genuinely say one of the nicest parts of my week is checking your site and seeing that an interesting new post is up.

  • Casie says:

    Congratulations, Mike! I can say I’ve been visiting this site for at least 8 years now and I’ve known you for almost 25 years now. Time, man. Weird and wild stuff.
    I love reading your stuff. Always a joy. You learn something new and end up laughing at one point as well. You’re a lovely human and I’m so happy for all your milestones.

  • stavner says:

    Congratulations, and good luck on your eye surgery!

  • @misterjayem says:

    I don’t enjoy much, but I have enjoyed this.

    Congratulations, Mike!

    — MrJM

  • Brian says:

    I suddenly realize that I’ve been coming here for at least twelve of those years, practically the Last Site Standing of the Great Boom of Comics Blogs. Good work, sir!

    Of course, New 52 Mike has only been at it for five years, if that makes you feel better. And he’s got a flashy Nehru collar and seams.

  • Bear says:

    Ah, I missed it! Belated happy bloggiversary, Mike!

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