Friday, 29 April 2016

Going (almost) fully digital.

This morning, while my family were still in bed, I was up an about doing some general tidying. This included putting away a pile of comics which were sat on my desk, taking space. However, when I attempted to do this I came across a number of problems and realised that maybe it's time I went (almost) fully digital.

At present, I have roughly 1,800 single issue comics (not a big collection but it gets me by). These floppies are currently stored within 2 longboxes, 3 short boxes (all under my desk) and three drawers of a filing cabinet which my wife bought me for just such a purpose after reading online that it could be done.

Now, the comics pile on my desk contained 10 'new' back issues of Fantastic Four I had recently acquired and, when filing them in with the rest of my collection, it resulted in a big mess where I had to move other runs to other places in order to find a home for everything.

It was then that I realised that I can't keep buying in print.

Therefore, going forward, I will be reading comics almost completely digitally. I say almost because both Lazarus and Black Magick I have already been collecting in print and, as such, don't really want to break up those collections. Besides those though, all my other comics will be bought off Comixology.

To be fair, there are many bonuses to buying digitally from where I'm sitting, besides the immense space saving. First of all, transportation of comics to read is no longer a problem for, as long as I have a wifi connection, I can download whatever I like to my iPad whenever I like. With print I'd be limited to what I could carry (that's about 20 single issues and a trade).

Then, there is actually a money saving incentive to buying online. This is because it costs me about eighty pence more to buy a comic from a shop that it does on Comixology. Now, this may not seem like much but, to me, this makes all the difference to how many comics I can buy.

And finally, there is the (rather cynical) fact that print comics aren't really worth anything to resell. Amongst my collection I have about 300 comics from early in my collecting which, when looking back, I have to ask myself 'what was I thinking?' However, getting rid of these is nigh on impossible because, as they aren't good series, people don't want them. Therefore, it would be much easier to buy digitally and not have to worry about trying to resell.

Of course, there are downsides to this plan of action, such as the fact that I wouldn't actually own a comic if I bought online. However, given that most are now able to be downloaded as a pdf/cbz file, this doesn't worry me as much any more.

No, what I consider the biggest downside to my doing this is that I'm, in some way, letting down my LCS. This is because, comic shops deserve readers support in fear that they become extinct, especially due to the reasons I myself am going fully digital. My hope is that I can offload the dead weight of my collection, free up some space and return to buying print copies, somehow creating a balance of comics between the two.

In the meantime though, I have to put myself (and by extension, my family) first by saving money and saving space.

Although hopefully I'll win the lottery and so make both of these problems moot.

For DC Rebirth I'm buying Wonder Woman, but nothing else!

This has been a decision I've been wrestling with for the better part of a week, but not because of anything simple or mundane.

Basically, it was all to do with that Shelly Bond thing!

A little background in case you were living under a rock. Last week DC announced that it was reshuffling its management structure so that Vertigo staff reported direct to DC top dogs (or some such idea). However, as a result of this, Vertigo head honcho Bond was dismissed due to being surplus to requirements.

Wonder Woman, the only DC
Rebirthcomic worthy of my time.
Well, the Internet didn't take kindly to this, but not because Bond was fired. The problem most people had was that she was fired while a long time DC editor kept his job despite being accused of sexual harassment in the workplace.

Now, I'm not writing this to have a rant on the subject, there are plenty other places you can find such things on the Internet. I'm merely stating it to give my decision some context.

This is because, not long after this 'news', I read an article on the blog mom reads comics which talked about boycotting DC due to these events. The thing is, I agree with what I read because, and maybe I'm soapboxing, I think DC keeping this guy in a job while 'better' people are removed is particularly unfair. For what this guy did, he should have been fired, not hidden away until the dust settled. That said, he wasn't and there is little I'm able to do about it...

...except withhold my money!!

And this is where I hit a quandary. I want to back up my convictions on this subject and just avoid DC comics. That said, as fickle as it is, I'm still a fan and want to at least see if the whole Rebirth thing is an improvement on New 52.

So thank god for Greg Rucka!

I'm a big fan of Rucka's work. Lazarus is amazing! Final Crisis: Revelations was the best thing to come out of that whole mess and his work on Question and Batwoman during 52 were major highlights there. Therefore, his writing Wonder Woman out that book to the top of my list, something which was enhanced with the inclusion of Nicola Scott (Liam Sharp I can take or leave, although a tweet of his art I just saw sure gives me hope for a creative trifecta).

The thing is that the creative team on a book isn't the dealbreaker here so much as the morals behind said team. What I mean by this is as I was reading up on the whole Bond scandal (I think it's safe to call it that) I found this small mention, only about a paragraph, that Rucka had agreed to write Wonder Woman as long as he didn't report to the editor in questionFor me, this is the clincher!
Now, maybe I'm selling out my moral state. Maybe a boycott is only effective if I boycott ALL DC comics, not the 99%. But while DC shouldn't be praised for their behaviour over the whole thing, should the creators be equally affected? I think not, but while most won't work under this guy, to me Rucka is the only one I have proof of (to my knowledge) who willingly stands up to what has happened. Therefore, it seems logical to me that if there is any one book from DC I WILL get when Rebirth begins, it's Wonder Woman!

Or, at the very least, it sure won't be a Superman book!