Cheating On My LCS

It’s all the fault of the Brave and The Bold, I tell you.

I’ve been getting my comics from my local shop for almost thirty years. Sure, I’ll buy trades from Amazon – and before that, play.com if anyone remembers them – in order to save myself a few pounds and get them delivered the next day, but for my weekly fix, for the regular series on my pull list, I head to my comic shop on a Friday or Saturday.

The owner’s been good to me over the years – he knows what I like and has suggested stuff every now and then that perhaps I wouldn’t have tried. Some of it I enjoyed, some I didn’t, but it’s nice to have that interaction.

With Dark Nights: Metal, I told the owner that I’d be getting the main series but not the one-shot tie ins; as you’ll see soon enough, I’m having to build a new bookcase to house my ever expanding collection of comics, and yet more physical copies just didn’t sit well with me.

A few days ago, I was browsing Comixology more out of curiosity than anything else. I’ve bought a handful of items from them – the digital Crisis on Infinite Earths and the War of The Gods collection – when I saw Brave and The Bold #28 to #30 on the site, the first appearance of the Justice League of America. While I have the issues in the Showcase Presents collections, and the Archive editions that came out years ago, the chances of me owning the actual issues are remote. However, for under a fiver, I could get the three of them digitally. A few clicks of a button later and there they sat, in my books in the Comixology cloud.

And then I started looking around at what else was out there.

And started to succumb.

I bought all twenty three issues of Fate, the ridiculous 90s series that came out of Zero Hour and transformed Dr Fate into a dagger wielding, pouch strap wearing magician. I have both Guy Gardner: Reborn and Guy Gardner: Warrior on my wish list, alongside Captain Atom and LEGION. I’ve even saved Anima for later – you know, because I’m currently annotating Bloodlines so it sort of counts as research.

And now I find myself looking at the Dark Night: Metal tie-ins.

Even though I told my comic shop I didn’t want them.

What to do . . . ?

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Digital Or Print?

I’ve long been a collector of comics – as Mrs Earth-Prime can attest, I have boxes full of the things, not to mention shelves groaning under the weight of trade paperbacks and while I have a steady stream of new comics coming in each week, I’ll occasionally pick up runs of series I missed first time around. Over the last few years, for example, I’ve picked up the John Ostrander Suicide Squad, the complete Darkstars and a couple of mini-series, not to mention the various tie-in issues for the annotations I’m working on.

(Which reminds me, must get back to War of The Gods . . . )

A few months ago, I joined Comixology more out of curiosity than anything, and ended up buying the digital version of Crisis on Infinite Earths because it seems I was unhappy with only having three versions of it already.

Looking through the site yesterday, though, I noticed they have the complete run of LEGION from the late 80s and early 90s, a series that I was tempted by at the time but back then I only had so much money for comics. Every issue is £1.49 which (as I already have a couple of crossover issues with series I was collecting) means I’d spend about £100 and have the entire lot stored in the cloud within minutes.

Or, I could go to My Comic Shop and pick up the back issues; most of them are $1.35; with postage that would be approximately £120 and would take between 8 and 14 days to arrive . . . but they’d be in my hands as opposed to on screen.

It comes to something when the deciding factor isn’t price but format.

Digital on the left, print on the right.
Digital on the left, print on the right.