This isn’t really a variant covers post.

§ November 28th, 2022 § Filed under blogging about blogging is a sin, variant covers § 2 Comments

So I apologize…I’ve been getting home lately feeling under the weather and pretty worn out, so “typing out long-form commentaries at the computer deep into the night” hasn’t been a huge priority for me for the last few days. It’s just a bug I’m fighting (NOT COVID, I ASSURE YOU) and I should be back to whatever passes for normal within a couple of days.

In the meantime I’ve been lazily watching a lot of television, with a good dollop of YouTube mixed in. Now, I don’t usually watch comic book-related YouTubery, preferring instead to let the sound of this video drape over my wearied brow.

But I happened to find this one, discussing the history of variant covers:


Unlike my long-running and currently waiting-for-new-content series on this here site, where I jumped all over the place discussing this, that, and the other thing, this video gives more of a chronological context to what was going on.

What surprised me was that I was cited in the course of the video, when the Jab #3 from Adhesive Comics was featured. You know, the one the publisher straight up shot with a real bullet. Specifically, the usage of a panel scan from that post was noted in the video, and a link back to my website was provided in that video’s notes, which was nice. I do feel like that post provided a lot of the info used in that specific segment, beyond the one panel, but eh, Information Wants to Be Free an’ all that. Happy to be a research source.

I should also note not all those Spider-Man #1s were the same price, as the black bagged version was two bucks. Why was it two bucks and not $1.75 like the others? Because they could charge two bucks for it, that’s why. I wrote about this infamous first issue here.

Anyway, it’s a good video and you should watch it. Also, kudos to the fella for pulling a Silver Surfer #50 off his rack and revealing a U.S. 1 underneath.

• • •

A couple of brief responses to comments here:

Scipio asked

“Any idea why the Comic Treadmill old posts are inaccessible?

“All of H and Mag’s work.. .gone?”

I just took a look, and yeah, the last few posts are on the one page, but the post calendar is way out of date on the right there. I feel like that may be a page template error or something, like it hasn’t been updated for current browsers or something. I’ve been in contact with H recently, so I’ll send him another email and ask what’s up.

And then Gregory Burgas said on the topic of the comicsweblogosphere

“I think the ‘Golden Age’ was around 06-11/12 or so. Before that, it was a bit Wild West, but around 06, everything seemed to be humming, but around 11/12, people began to drop off. Of course, those years are fluid, but that seems about right. I’m glad you’re still cooking!”

I’m still standing, as it were. I don’t plan on going anywhere soon, I’ve still got posts about the Death of Superman and Frank Miller’s The Spirit to write.

But yes, the 2006-2012 timeframe sounds pretty close. I started this site in late 2003 (with BBS stuff and LiveJournal before that), and there were a few earlier than me (like the immortal Neilalien). The late, lamented Journalista daily linkblog by Dirk Deppey from the early 2000s on drove a lot of traffic to sites, including mine…and I’ve told Deppey plenty of times that a lot of what I’ve accomplished today, including opening my own shop, stems from him pointing out my dumb site in one of his updates. The exact quote:

“…Definitely one of the better new comics bloggers to emerge so far this year.”

…made me very happy, particularly coming from The Comics Journal, a magazine I’d long read and admired. Hopefully my long decline since hasn’t made him regret his statement.

But I can’t say when I first noticed the dropoff. I know a lot of my online pals with whom I most directly interacted started to cut the blogging habit as the years wore on, and boy, I sure heard “blogging is dead” a whole lot over the last few years. I know the big thing is video, or image-heavy stuff on Instagram and the like, and giant blocks of text like the one you’re currently enduring being somewhat on the outs. But folks are still out there writing and posting on their WordPress installs and their Blogger sites, so The Blog is still hanging in there.

I mean, for your sake, it better…you don’t want to have to look at my face on TikTok or whatever for your comics content.

Anyway, I said I wasn’t doing a long post since I’m feeling yucky, and here I am still trying. I do tend to be a creature of habit, which may be as much a reason as any for my continuing to write here, even when I should be in bed sleeping off my sickness. So, thanks for reading pals, and we’ll all meet back here again in a couple of days.

2 Responses to “This isn’t really a variant covers post.”

  • Boosterrific says:

    Is it just a coincidence that 2006-12 covers the economic boom immediately before the Great Recession and its long, “jobless” recovery? Blogging, after all, isn’t a particularly expensive hobby (and doesn’t require much bandwidth).

    FWIW: According to my archives, the last big crossover event I had with other comic hero bloggers was in 2014. That’s almost a decade!

  • LondonKdS says:

    It’s probably not a coincidence that your “golden age of blogging” coincides quite well with the period from the launch of Google Reader until Google shut it down because it didn’t give enough opportunity for advertising and data-harvesting.

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