Wednesday, April 30, 2008

REPORT :: The Heroes Discussion Group :: April 28, 2008!

First of all HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Andy Mansell, our Customer-In-Chief and the moderator of our Heroes Discussion Group! Andy turns, um, I forget--65? 75?--today. Or 47. One of those. Anyway, he's one of our very favorite customers and a great friend, and we're pleased as punch that he's older today. If you have the time, leave good ole Andy Mansell a note of felicitation/commiseration in the Comments section.

But speaking of Andy, I wanted to post a brief report on Monday's Heroes Discussion Group, which was predictably AWESOME! We held it in the back of the store this time, allowing Andy to address us from an ersatz pulpit, as you can see in the several photos we've posted to our Flickr page. The discussion ranged from mythology to sci-fi, and pretty much everywhere in between. Only one of us was not really crazy about the story, so we kept addressing ourselves to him, to try and convince him of the greatness. Shame on us for ganging up, but Ernie was a good sport about it--who doesn't love to be the center of attention?

Anyway, you can read all about it on the Flickr pages. For next month's subject of discussion, we thought we'd solicit some suggestions from our blog audience. At the end of the meeting we nominated the following (you guys who were there remind me if I've forgotten anything):

Batman: Year One
Sandman: Season of Mists

Marvel: 1602

Batman: Year One was the clear favorite of the attending group members, but what do you think? Let us know between now and this Monday, May 5, when I'll post what we all decide!


Rusty Baily said...


Andy Mansell said...

Thanks! I'm 47.. my waist is 65.

Dan Morris said...

Happy Birthday Andy.

Which Grendel story were you guys thinking of talking about?

Todd Harlan said...

Happy Birthday!

Shawn Reynolds said...

Happy Birthday Andy!

I'll throw my vote in for Batman Year One.

Seth Peagler said...

Happy Birthday Andy! Looking forward to the next discussion. I'll vote for Sandman or Batman.

Cooper said...

Happy Birthday, Andy!

And I was cool being the voice of dissent...It makes things spicier. I did almost hit Dustin with the bench I was sitting on after he bad-mouthed all HULK comics, but the gamma rays just didn't kick in.

And, Dan, I mentioned GRENDEL, since I thought it'd be cool to talk about an anti-hero. I was thinking an arc of the original Comico (Go ELEMENTALS!) stuff, but Dustin said the later stuff I've never read (Grendel Prime stuff, I think?) would be better.

That being said...I'm also down with BATMAN or SANDMAN, too.

Dustin Harbin said...

Ernie, it's the stuff right at the end of the Comico series, maybe the last ten issues or so? I think Dark Horse finished reprinting those a year or so ago. AMAZING! Once the story goes into the far future, it's like Grendel meets Dune, with a young Tim Sale doing the art. Maybe Matt Wagner's best storytelling ever.

"Grendel Prime" was a 10 or 12 issue miniseries with art by Patrick McEown, that's really great awesome, but kinda depends on the earlier stuff too much to stand alone. Kind of like Empire Strikes Back, to put it into movie language you can understand. Also highly recommended.

I think Batman/Grendel was one of the first comics I read as an adult when I discovered Heroes back in the early 90's or so, and that led me to Grendel: Prime, and then back through the color stuff, which I think is weaker the farther back you go. Mainly because of the art, but it's just SUPER dark stuff, and can be a little heavy. The later stuff has enough SF to be a larger, more epic story, and breathes a lot better.

Andy Mansell said...

Even though Grendel would be the most exciting choice, I would like to change my vote from Sandman to Batman Year 1 for two reasons.

1. It is so chock full of stuff-- this was when Miller was making a difference instead of marking time en route to becoming a movie director.
2. More importantly--it is available and affordable

I'd like to thank everyone who attended. You all make my job easier. i can't wait for the next one!!!

Anonymous said...

Marvel 1602 is mighty dandy, but after arguing in the store with Dustin I'll have to say Batman Year One. Maybe another read will change my mind.

Or not.

But Dustin you were right about the Ultimates 3. I only read about five pages and can't even remember what they were about.

Dustin Harbin said...

I tried to warn you, but I didn't want to snatch the book out of your hand or anything.

Monk a.k.a. Zach said...

Tackling her to the ground and yelling "The President has been shot!" would've been more appropriate than snatching.

Justin said...

I wasn’t able to make this last discussion group but was there for The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen group. I would like to cast my vote for Sandman: Seasons of Mist rather than Batman: Year One. I’m sure it’s good it’s just that, alas, I don’t do superheroes.

Dustin Harbin said...

Ha! Even more reason for Batman: Year One--it's the perfect superhero book for people who don't read superhero comics!

Plus, for my money, it's hard to get more dreary than Sandman--I enjoyed Season of Mists way back when, but that's not the same as wanting to talk about it.