Types of comic book collectors part 1: Readers (1/4)

When you start talking about making a comic book collection and investing. It’s easy to forget that some people don’t care about that.

Some people buy comics the same way they buy books, for the pure thrill of a well-written story. They buy comics to read them. They want that new book smells. To them, getting a variant cover is the same as getting a collector edition of a book. It makes your collection look good, but you’re still going to read the book.

Readers care about taking care of their comics, but not in the same way a person who buys for investing does. Investors know that too much handing can easily drop the value of a comic. And when you read a comic more than once it’s very easy to damage it. But readers, read anyway, it’s the experience. It’s turning through each page, getting to the end, and beign super excited for next week. It’s the same way with those who read manga, manhwa, and webtoon.

You may wonder why people who read don’t buy a trade paper. A trade paper (TP) is a collection of comics from a volume(it’s never the whole volume) printed together in one book. There are many reasons why those who love to read do and don’t buy them. For me, the main problem is the wait. You’ll have to wait for the comics to come out and then be printed together. Or you can buy the comics when they come out. Secondly is pricing . I know it might sound strange, but normally a trade paper and buying each comic individually is around the same price. It is crazy because comics appreciate value, but graphic novels depreciate. Lastly is the benefit. Instead of having multiple comics that could easily be lost, you have a neat little book with everything in it. But to me, that benefit doesn’t outway the other two.

Exception: Omnibus.

There is two significant difference between an omnibus and a trade paper. The price and the amount of content. An omnibus will give you the whole volume or every comic surrounding a specific comic event, so it makes sense that it’s normally between $75-150. But unlike a trade paper, an omnibus has so much content that it is worth the price. And unlike trade papers, they tend to hold their value. If you want to read a full volume or comic event this gives you the ability to do all of that while avoiding the comic book market. This is ideal if you want to read old comics or a very big comic book even.

And to be fair if you are wanting to read a full volume or event, this gives you everything without you having to search for each issue individually. Especially if you just want to read to know what happened. This is ideal for old and long comic book arcs.
Being this kind of collector is fun because you never know what story will surprise you. It also drives you to find more independently published labels.

Is this the kind of collector you are?

Don’t get me wrong, I do read my comics. Well, I read the comics that I buy to read. What you have to understand is that most collectors aren’t just one kind of collector, but a mixture of the first three. The only thing that some may not be mixed with is the last of the four.

Should you subscribe to a series or just collect keys as a beginner collector

Easy.

Start collecting one series or mini-series that is just starting is the best way for a beginner comic book collector.

Why?

When starting a collection, you want to make it fun without stressing about key issues and making money. Especially if you want to read the comics you buy.

What’s the benefit of subscribing to a series?

A collection with every issue is worth more, and you have the added bonus of having the whole story. By getting a full run of a comic book you are almost guaranteed to get at least two key issues, and that’s a low estimate. If you have a pull list for a particular series; you are almost always guaranteed every issue. Which is pivotal when a popular key comes out. Occasionally a key issue will come out and many people will request it, but if you already have an occurring pull for this comic every month, you’ll be the priority. Unless it’s one of the rare occasions of a comic being under-published, but that’s very rare(I’m looking at you BlackMask).

What should I start with now, June 2022?

I would suggest putting in a pre-order for Edge of Spider-Verse and the new Spider-Verse series that will be released later this year.

Why?

Because not only is this the end of the Spider-verse, but it is a series that you’re guaranteed to have multiple first appearances, and most Spider-verse characters end up being very popular. And I think it will be a fun read as well.

I would also suggest A.X.E.: Judgement Day (Avengers vs. X-men vs. Eterernals), because it is a pivotal event in the marvel universe, and should be a good read. There’s honestly no telling what might happen in it.

Should I not go for the key then if I’m new?

No, I’m not saying that at all. It just takes a bit more research to figure out what you should get. It’s a hit and a miss sometimes, even for seasoned collectors. So let me give you a few suggestions for some keys that I’m interested in that are coming out soon.

Keys that I’m interested in:

Amazing Spider-Man #900 [ first appearance of Sinister Adaptoid]
Venom #11 [first appearance of Sleeper Agent]
Edge of the Spider-verse #1-3[first appearance of Spider-Rex, Spider-UK, Spider-Laird, Night-Spider, and Hunter-Spider]
Power Rangers Unlimited: Death Rangers #1 (Foil)[first appearance of Death Ranger]

Starting a comic book collection on a budget part Part 2: Where to buy comics

Is this a Trick Question?

I know your immediate answer will be comic book shops and you wouldn’t be wrong, but here’s some other places.

Auctions

The first comic books I ever received were won by my uncle at an auction house. They were hidden inside a wardrobe that he.That’s the fun thing about auctions, you might win a little bit of anything.

Thrift shops

Thrift shops do have a little bit of everything and sometimes they’ll have comics. I have gotten polybagged sealed comics at Goodwill.

Yard sales

A lot of people have no idea what they have and are STILL selling their kid’s comics. Most of the older people I know that collected as a kid, don’t have their comics because of their parents doing this.

Bargain stores like Ollie’s

Ollie’s is a rare kind of discount store . They sell small packs of comics and also single issues.

Used Book stores

Many stores that sell used books, often sell used comics as well. It’s not every used book store, but many will surprise you,

Online

I want to say a good thirty to fifty percent of my collection comes from eBay. But there is also Midtown Comics, My comic shop, and so many others sites you can use.

Walmart

Yes, DC has had multiple partnerships with Walmart. So if you are at one of their selective Walmarts you can find packs of comics there.

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