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Comic Geekdom for Dummies Tags: comics superman

Please don't let the title of this blog lead you to think I associate reading comics with a lack of intelligence.  That couldn't be farther from the truth because I have pretty good grasp of what a highly evolved literary form graphic storytelling has become.  It's because of this ever-growing complexity that I reach out to the true comic geeks to help us fledgling geeks dive face first into the world of comics history.

I'm obviously no different from the rest of you in that I love my superheroes and villains.  I'd say I know more about them than an average person, but when I read other fan posts on this site, and on Facebook, I end up feeling like a big dummy because I don't read comics.  I've learned very quickly that I've got a lot to learn, especially about the history of Superman in comics. 

So the purpose of this blog is to ask all of you to offer your tips and advice on how to ease into comic geekdom, and I hope that other novices, like me, can benefit from your experience.  Here are my issues (pun intended) that have contributed to me not getting too involved with comics.  Please feel free to respond to any or all of them.  I prefer DC, but am open to Marvel suggestions, too.  FYI--I really like Aquaman, so if anybody can make recommendations on his storylines, that would be fabulous.

1.  I'm impatient and don't like cliffhangers.  Many storylines are stretched out over several issues, and cross over into other titles.  That drives me nuts.  I know that it's common practice now to publish all parts into one hardcover or paperback edition, so you get the whole story, rather than being stuck chasing down individual issues.  This could be a good thing for me, but I don't know where to start.  Which storylines, that are available in graphic novel format, do you recommend?

2.  Are there any titles that don't do as much stretching of stories, and are comprised of more one-shot stories.  I really like those better.  I like a quick little fun/interesting story that I can read as a minor diversion.

3.  As a way to be exposed to a wide spectrum of characters, which titles typically feature more heroes and villains?  I'll assume any Justice League, Teen Titans, X-Men books would be a good start, but I know there are probably a lot of variations of these titles.  Which ones are the best?

4.  Comic collecting can be an expensive hobby, and I'm not in the position, right now, to start spending more money on randomly filling in my collection.  If I did want to start hunting down issues again, where is the best place to start?  Flea markets, eBay, collector shows???  I'm a cheapskate and try to just go through the back issue bins for $1 books.

5.  I like to be light-heartedly entertained, so I probably won't like getting into really heavy or complicated stories.  Are there any specific titles that are written a little more fun, and less dark.  I think superheroes are fun, and I think that I'd prefer fun stories over the really deep stuff, ya know?

Thanks for any advice you guys and gals can offer up!

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