This is my first OP, so be nice.
In this day and age, where comics (or TPBs, at least) can be had at Barnes and Noble or Borders, one could be fooled into thinking that the local comics shop (or LCS, for you hipsters) is an anachronism. We know better though. Where else can you find old issues or non-mainstream fare? Moreover, where else can you commiserate with fellow comics fans, maybe play some new tabletop RPG, and rely on the fact that the guy (or girl) behind the counter actually knows what they're talking about?
In this thread, we shall wax poetic about our local comics shop. What's the name of your shop(s) of choice? What sets it apart from your other comics buying venues? What are some of the positive and negative aspects that you've encountered with local shops? Links and pics are welcome, as are interesting anecdotes. Let's show our love for that bastion of nerdery, the LCS.
Okay, that out of the way, I actually have three shops in my town that I know of, but the shop that inspired this post is called Cosmic Cat Comics and Games
. First off, I like that they have a functional web site where I can browse their catalog and, more importantly, start and update a pull list. Second, their policy on back issues has turned me into an impulse buyer. Almost every comic that's over 5 months old gets bagged and marked down to $1 an issue. I've been able to pick up some real gems thanks to this policy. Third, the staff is friendly and they actually read comics, so I can get good recommendations. Fourth, they usually have a sale (10-25% off) every weekend for people that have pull lists at the shop.
I'd say the only downsides to the shop are: much smaller back issue selection, smaller selection of TPBs, and somewhat less diversity in the comics carried than the other two shops. The shop is also a bit small and cluttered, but it's a storefront so it has big windows to let in light. Also, they carry manga and anime DVDs. Overall, I like the shop a lot and look forward to my bi-weekly runs. If I were into RPGs, I'd probably go every week.
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They have pretty nice website, nothing special really. Im glad it turned out to be a good store when they are pretty much the only option I have.
When I'm not at school, the one I go to is about 20 minutes away, called WINN Cards and Comics. It's bigger then the one at school, which isn't an accomplishment, but I think they get most of their costumers for M:TG or other games like that (they have a big area set up for games). The staff there is awesome as well. I mainly get heroclix from here.
My favorite place has to be Midtown Comics, in NYC. It was only a few blocks away from the office I interned at, and of course their selection is excellent. Since I was mainly into Trades, I bought most of my stuff here. They also had a sweet toy selection, so I spent alot of time looking at that stuff.
I love Cosmic Comix because the owner is a very chill guy, all the workers are friendly dudes who you can have a convo with or can leave you alone if all you wanna do is look at comics, its a well-lit spacey area (which does wonders for when you're browsing comics) and he has frequent specials and sales. They always have everything well-organized, with a bookcase or two for each company, and their toys and figures collection is very nice. Its basically a cool place to hang out if you want and get treated with respect when you buy comics. Also, their website has some funny reviews and is kept up-to-date
Midtown Comics is like some sort of fanboy Mecca. I try to stop in there every time I'm in New York City, even when it's just for a few hours.
I also shop at Comics Unlimited when I want back issues, since the dude who runs it typically marks everything that's not super-recent down to a dollar. There's also a Subway across the street, so that's convenient. It also tends to look a little bit cleaner and well-organized than Comic Quest, likely due to the smaller amount of customers and product to deal with. The downside is that I can never get new comics there, since the owner tends to only order enough to fill his customers' pull lists, and I've been shopping at Comic Quest since I was in grade school, so there's a bit of a loyalty issue.
We love you too. :roll: This is an odd place to hang out if you hate comic book fans. And the comic shops I go to all smell like new books, which is a wonderful (dare I say delicious?) smell. Hensler, maybe you're going to the wrong shops or something.
Anyway, the other two shops I go to, The Book Shelf and Comics and Games, have their own appeal. The Book Shelf is part used book store, part comics store, and it's run by a middle aged guy that seems to be really into comics. He's got, by far, the most diverse selection in new issues, and has at least the last year and a half covered for most titles. Also, the TPB selection is better than Cosmic Cat's. On the downside, if you're a tabletop or CCG gamer, you won't find much there. Also, there's no mark down on any of the much older issues, and I can't use my debit card if the purchase is under six dollars, which my purchases from there usually almost always are.
Comics and Games is more of a young person's store, since it's by Florida State University, and they even have a 10% student discount. They've got the best selection of TPBs of the three shops and they've got the best inventory of RPG and CCG items, particularly games involving miniatures. They've also got a fairly extensive back issue inventory (at least a couple thousand, I'd say). The guys that work there are pretty cool too.
In the end, I go to Cosmic Cat for my pull list, but I drop in on the other two when I have the time and am in the neighborhood.
i've seen ed brubaker shopping there!
I bought their "discount card" thing that gets me 20% off monthlies and TPBs, plus special deals on other stuff ($.25 for old issues). It cost me $15 in March and I probably saved well over $100 with it. The shop also has B:TAS cels hanging on the wall. No price on them, but there's a sign that says "everything's for sale". So one day, I will buy them.
If I'm down at school, I go to Fat Jacks, usually. It's pretty neatly organized and has a lot of stuff. Or, if I'm lazy, I'll go to the one two blocks from school that is almost like Hot Topic but without the shitty music and they sell comics.
Man, that Jewish comics store sounds like awesomesauce. 20% off my pull list and trades would make me completely forget that Books-A-Million carries a large selection of TPBs. 25 cents for back issues is also mighty alluring.
By the by, Keith, your title is filled with lies.
Anyway, I go to a place called Atomic Comics. I can't really say I feel anything particular for it one way or the other; but it's nice that I can go there and find everything I want in new issues (and usually any trades I want).
My only beef with them is that they don't sell used trades for some reason; possibly lack of space.
well it sounds like all your b&ns suck, because all the ones i've been to have stuff like nextwave and goodbye chunky rice and whatever
i mean it's not a great selection, but it's usually two or three bookcases of stuff
shop Pulp Fiction Comics, usually has every trade I need (20% off all trades).
They also have pretty good prices on single issue collections, I got 52
#9-16 for $15.
Are you talking about trades or singles?
I'm talking about singles. They have one or two of those plastic carousel things. That's it.
Trades are a different story, but they still tend to be heavy on the big stuff like Spidey and Batman (not that I blame them; that's what sells), and there's always about half-again as much space for manga as American trades.
oh yeah, i was talking about trades
MISUNDERSTANDING ALL UP INS
Oh, it would be totally awesome if it wasn't worse than a game store with ordering shit.
It's like you have to tell them every single thing you might want in the next six months or else they won't get any of them.
My local big box book store (Chapters I think) a very small selection of any trades other then a few more mainstream books like V for Vendetta etc, the only real superhero thing I believe was the first volume of USM. In all it doesn't even take up an entire shelf yet alone a whole bookcase, though none of the comic book stores around here carry all that much more so there's probably not much of a market around here I guess. On the other hand the manga section is a fair bit bigger then I've seen in other similar stores.
As for my local comic book stores there's only two of them now which is a far cry from the 5 we had years ago, with only a population of around 75k... they didn't last long. Its too bad too since they competed with each other on deals and discounts, and if one store didn't have what you wanted you could always try another one.
Of whats left the best place for comics in my area is a small used book store which has reasonable sized comic books section on the side. They're the best organised, a good atmosphere and reliable plus they actually get all the titles I 'm looking for and in general have a good selection of comics. Only problem I've had with them is some titles can lack in quantities, such as Ultimate Spider-man having only having something like one shelf copy and they rarely reorder anything but they do tend to estimate numbers fairly well so not too many complaints there. They have a discount of 10% off pull list customers titles, which doesnt even cover the tax but I guess its better then nothing.
The only other store in town is the last remaining comic book store after the big boom/bust. They used to be fairly decent but over the years the tabletop gaming part of it took over. Now around 3/4 is completely devoted to gaming and the comics are shoved into a small corner and is really poorly organised with titles stacked on top of each other and hardly enough room for even one person to browse them. Also their off the shelf titles tends to only be most popular stuff (and judging from what I've seen of most of their pull lists, they probably only order a few extra copes of those issues and forget about anything else) and even adding smaller or new titles to your pull list leaves you empty handed. They're moving soon so maybe things will improve after that.
If I was more into the gaming and card games its probally a amazing store, with staying open late to allow people to play stuff and holding tournaments.
I used to go to a shop in Elizabethtown... I think it was called Graphic Arts Too or something. Wierd little place. If you don't have a pull list, forget about finding any singles. A lot of TPBs. The owner is not terribly accomadating. Almost no back issues at all.
The Comic Store in Lancaster is really nice. Tons of current releases, tons of back issues, lots of tpbs and ogns. When I move down there, that is going to be my place.
Good organization, great selection, great people.
They also have a bunch of posters I never knew existed, like my awesome New Frontier one.
I was surprised when I saw that the B&N near school actually sold single issues. Although I never checked the magazine section at the other B&Ns I've been to. But this one only had Marvel comics.
And I think the general rule for B&N is to have at least 400% more manga than American comics. The one at school has like 4 shelves of US trades and 16 shelves of manga.
Well it does sell a lot better than american comics in book stores.
I hate going to my local Borders because there's a ton of fucking weeaboo anime fangirl people there that sit there and read their shitty shojo manga and annoy the crap out of me.
It's so cramped and tiny in there, I feel so awkward whenever I go there and browse around.
They've also stock pretty much everything from most publishers, as well as DC Direct statues and figures, and also Bowen Marvel statues and Diamond Select merchandise.
I tend to avoid the local B&N, as, like everyone else, it's filled with just a bit too much anime. Not to mention too many anime fans, who clog the aisle's whilst reading backwards through a tiny book.
Yeah, at that Books-A-Million I mentioned, the comics section used to have twice as much shelf space, but they reduced it to make way for more manga. I would laugh about the anime fans, but I used to be one of those people 4 or 5 years ago. :v:
Me too man, it's ok to laugh at them. You're better now.
we should start a help group
Well, I still like manga, just not enough to buy it anymore, with the exception of Megatokyo. To be honest, the manga nerds and the comic nerds aren't too far removed from each other. Having been to a convention or two, I can verify that both can be equally annoying. :P
What? I still read it three times a week (assuming Fred's updated). I know a lot of people can't get into it, but the writing got a lot stronger in the last three or four chapters. That, and my wife also likes the comic.
I go to a local place called Tim's corner. It's small and badly organized, but the guy who owns the place is awesome. He discounts everything in the store, and if you ever miss anything one week all you have to do is let him know what you're missing and he'll have it for you within two weeks.
That's what the store up here is like, too. So it's not too bad when I miss something, but it's like, why wouldn't you think that more than five people are going to want Batman?