Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Several Irrational Objects of Desire


I tend not to buy many comics in the periodical format anymore – I’m a waiting-for-the-trade kind of guy these days – so I had no problem vowing not to spend more than £1.20 on any comic from a publisher with a Diamond-exclusive distribution deal when I joined this blog. However, over the last few weeks, there have been several new releases that have aroused my interest and my resolve is starting to give. I currently have five new comics on my eBay watch list that I am VERY tempted to pay full price for, so I thought I should talk about these particular ‘objects of desire’ this week, in order to get my desires into perspective and to talk myself down. Here goes:

G.I. Combat #1
This is perhaps the least rational desire on my eBay watch list. I mainly want this because I like the Geoff Darrow cover, but I think it’s also because the title G.I. Combat reminds me of the ‘70s, when life was easier, comics were cheaper, Charlie’s Angels was on the telly, and Grease was the best film in the world (it still is!) – even though I never bought a single issue of G.I. Combat in the ‘70s. I have also never read a Haunted Tank comic before – the Haunted Tank being the focus of this particular one-shot – and I really want to, if only because the concept of a World War II tank haunted by the ghost of a Confederate soldier (and his horse) sounds so bizarre.

Locke & Key: Keys to the Kingdom issues 1 and 2
Having recently read and enjoyed the first three Locke & Key hardcovers, I really want to know what happens next, but only two issues of this latest series are out so far, so it will no doubt be some time before the next book is out. As I said, I am a ‘waiting for the trade’ kind of guy and I would really prefer to read this in trade form. In fact, if I did buy these comics, I would probably just sell them (at a loss) and buy the book when it comes out anyway, so my desire for these comics is really just down to impatience. Realistically, I should just pull myself together and wait for the next hardcover. It’s not as if I haven’t got loads of other books to read at the moment.

Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne #5
This series is something that I now wish I had waited for in trade format, but I bought the first four issues (of six) and I now feel almost obliged to buy this (very late) fifth issue. I really enjoyed the first couple of issues, and they led to me buying many more comics by Grant Morrison – a writer whose work I had always dismissed as incomprehensible – but I don’t remember much about issues 3 and 4 now and can’t help thinking that this, like most of Morrison’s work, will read better in trade form anyway. I think I should probably just sell the four issues I do have, while there is still some interest in the series, and wait for the trade... but it is very tempting to just buy the last two issues new to complete the set.

First Wave #4
I have a real soft spot for pulp heroes like Doc Savage, based on nothing at all really, except perhaps a fondness for that Doc Savage movie starring Ron ‘Tarzan’ Ely (I haven’t seen it for years but I liked it a lot when I was a kid). I bought the first four issues of the new DC Doc Savage series and they were really bad (a boring story and rotten art). The first three issues of this six-issue mini-series, however, were okay. This attempt to revive the pulp-era heroes that DC still owns the rights too – Doc Savage, The Spirit, The Avenger, Rima The Jungle Girl (I guess Dark Horse must still own the rights to Tarzan), the Blackhawks, and even Batman (I’m not sure what’s happened to The Shadow) – is written by Brian Azzarello in his usual pulpy style and rather well drawn by Rags Morales. Of all the individual comics on my eBay watch list, this is the one that I am most tempted to buy, partly because I want to read it but also because I know that it’s not something I will ever want to buy in trade form – it’s not that good. Really, this is just something I want to read once and then sell, and having to try and track down the remaining three issues for £1.20 or less each just seems like too much of a pain in the arse. I also think the chances of me being able to get the last three issues for £1.20 or less without buying a complete set are probably quite slim.

Of course, had we already started this blog when this series (and the Bruce Wayne series) first started, I would have just waited until I saw a cheap set or waited for a cheap copy of the eventual trade, but as I have already bought the first few issues of each series I am now presented with something of a dilemma: do I just quit buying these mid-series or do I keep buying them anyway and risk a punishment beating from Paul? Comic collecting can be so hard sometimes.

In summary: I am a very impatient and very indecisive person but I’m trying to work on it.

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