Collecting Yourself into the Ground

So pissed off from my trip to the mall. There’s a place there called “The Bargain Box.” The owner just opened a stand alone comic shop. It’s terrible. There are more crappy dvds than comics in the shop.

Anyways I’m getting off topic.

I go to “Comix & Collectibles” in hopes of finding an Action Comics #1. I already got it via ComiXology, but I wanted to have a physical copy to lend to a friend. I get in there and I can’t find *ANY* of the DC New 52 relaunch. I look through all the new releases and they’re just not there. I briefly thought “Wow, they sold out of everything! Even Hawk & Dove!?!?!”

Boy was I wrong. I eventually make my way to the back counter of the shop and see they have a bunch of high priced “collectible” comics behind the counter. Then I saw them… The New 52 comics. These idiots had them locked behind the counter. The clerk, who wasn’t even in the shop at the time, runs in and asks me if I was looking for anything. I tell him Action #1, he looks at me like an idiot. I explain it’s one of the newly relaunched titles from DC. He still looks at me with his idiotic blank stare.

“We have new releases in the front & more valuable ones behind the counter.”

This gets me thinking. More valuable comics? None of the DC relaunch titles had been out for more than a week. They’re back behind the counter? I looked over the selection and noticed that they had Detective Comics #1 price marked $12. It had only been out for two weeks. That clearly has to be a mistake.

“Does that Detective Comics say $12?”

The clerk fumbles around, almost turning in circles looking over the small collection of “valuable” comics.

“The one in the middle… the one with Batman on the cover… and the Joker… YES! That one.”

“Yeah, that’s $12.”

“Tell your boss he’s a scam artist.”

And I walked out.

$12 for a comic that hasn’t been out two weeks? A comic that sold incredibly well and will likely never be a collectible since so many copies were sold. There is no collector’s value when every one also owns a comic. If you want a perfect example of this, pick up any of the 5 million Reign of Supermen “special” editions that had the cut out covers. Each one introduced one of the new Supermen and the whole collection of them can be bought for a $1 in most shops. Most of these New 52 comics will be in the same boat in a year or two. Just because something is hard to find doesn’t mean it’s rare. In the case of these titles, the difficulty in finding the titles was a direct result of short-sighted shop owners simply not ordering enough copies.

I think the worst part of this is that one of the largest objectives with this relaunch was to attract new readers. These new #1s were meant to be a safe jumping off point for neophytes so they could enjoy the wonders of comics without the stress and work of extensive historical research into a character. So that being said… what new reader in their right mind would walk into a comic shop, see one of these new comics (which they have never purchased before mind you) and shell out $12 just to read a comic book.

It boggles the mind. Boggles the mind…

Say something... I dare you.