Wednesday, July 27, 2011

52 Recommendations: Part 2

As DC's New 52 is approaching, the Tribe is going to post what they're looking forward to the most in September and beyond.

Next up we have Eric, co-owner of Tribe!

As a retailer I am very much looking forward to all of the 52.  Interest and excitement of new fans is hitting a all time high.  That means a lot of new customers trying out DC Comics.  That makes me happy.

As a fan I am a little more scared about this relaunch.  There are a few titles however that I am happy to see.

Batgirl (Gail Simone/Adrian Syaf and Vincente Cifuentes, cover by Adam Hughes)

I know a lot of people are annoyed she is no longer Oracle.  That it losses something from the integrity of the character.  I think it is wonderful.  I love Babs and I am very happy to see her back as Batgirl.  Plus Simone has waited all her life to write Babs as Batgirl and she will make sure the character does not lose anything that made her unique.  Of all the writers in the world for Batgirl there could not be a better choice.  I have total faith that she will make this the best book of the new 52.

Aquaman (Geoff Johns/Ivan Reis and Joe Prado)

While I have no been happy with the current story arc of GL, I loved Brightest Day.  Johns has wanted to do an Aquaman comic for  a while and this will give some need exposure to a under used JLA member.  With the exception of Morrison's 90's JLA run no one has really been able to write this Character as cool as he should be.  Johns will do that is nothing else.

Nightwing (Kyle Higgins/Eddy Barrows and JP Mayer)

I know that a lot of people were happy with Dick as Batman.  Certainly he did a better job than Bruce but the role did not work for me.  Dick never wanted to be the Bat he always wanted to be his own man.  I am so glad that he is getting his own book again.  How much of the character will change with the DCU being so altered I do not know, but I have to root for this book.  He has been my favorite character in comics since I was a kid,and he was Robin.

All Star Western (Justin Gray and Jimmy Palmiotti/Moritat)

If you have not been reading the Jonah Hex book now is the time to try.  It has been the perfect spaghetti western.  The only bad part about the book was the rotating artists.  Now with All Star Western they will have a good regular artist, and the same great writers.  I have no doubt that this book will be great.  If you like the Clint Eastwood early western movies you need to try this number #1!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

52 Recommendations Part 1

As DC's New 52 is approaching, the Tribe is going to post what they're looking forward to the most in September and beyond. If you don't want to miss anything, you can get all 52 titles for 25% off, or all a certain week's titles in the 52 for 15% off.

First up is me, Paul Harrison, the guy who currently maintains this website.

Birds of Prey (Duane Swierczynski/Jesus Saiz)

A noir novelist, and awesome (former) Marvel writer, Swierczynski's work is universally tense and action-oriented. Birds of Prey seems like a good fit - the team made up of normal, trained people, fighting real crime. Without Oracle in the new DC Universe, who knows what their backstory is, but it's sure to be a fun ride.

Legion Lost (Fabien Nicieza/Pete Woods)

I haven't read a Legion book in over a decade, but Nicieza's runs on Marvel's Thunderbolts, and DC's Red Robin has convinced me that I should buy everything he writes. It certainly doesn't hurt that it definitely looks like it's going to be a smart sci-fi superhero story, and takes its name from a Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning (The Kings of Cosmic!) storyline that is now available in a trade paperback.

Mr. Terrific (Eric Wallace/Gianluca Gugliotta, cover by J.G. Jones)

Mr. Terrific is one of my favorite characters in the DCU, and this is his first solo series ever. Introduced in John Ostrander's old Spectre series, Mr. Terrific went on to be a member of the JSA, and later was the White King of DC's spy organization Checkmate. This new chapter in his life has him running his own corporation and think-tank, so I expect some pretty awesome super-science.

Justice League International (Dan Jurgens/Aaron Lopresti)

Partially spinning out of the amazing Justice League: Generation Lost, JLI represents a new take on one of the best Justice League comics of all time. JLI was razor-sharp wit, relevant stories, and just awesome stories. Dan Jurgens, creator and writer of Booster Gold, is someone that I definitely trust to continue these fine traditions. I know they're continuing the tradition of mysteries at least, since there used to be someone in the lower left in that cover. Hmmm?

Suicide Squad (Adam Glass/Marco Rudy, cover by Ryan Benjamin)

Despite these costumes (Which I hope don't make it past the cover), and despite Gail Simone's wonderful Secret Six ending, a new Squad title has been a long time coming. Politically relevant, hilarious, and incredibly brutal, the 80s Suicide Squad (First volume available now!) was one of the greatest comics ever made. Adam Glass's previous experience seems to mostly be with Deadpool titles, which I hope is a good fit.

Blue Beetle (Tony Bedard/Ig Guara/Ruy Jose, Cover by Taylor Kirkham/Sal Regla)

Jaime Reyes from El Paso, TX is one of the few superheroes Texans can call their own, and his previous adventures under Kieth Giffen and John Rogers (Collected starting in Blue Beetle: Shellshocked) were some of the best teenage superhero books you could ever want. Tony Bedard can be an inconsistent writer, but when he likes and knows characters, he's one of the best. I hope this is a breakout title for Blue Beetle, and Bedard since they really deserve one.

Animal Man (Jeff Lemire/Tarvel Foreman and Dan Green)

Animal Man is one of those characters that only a certain amount of people know is awesome, and that can be said for Jeff Lemire as well, who is a writing superhero. Jeff Lemire's creator-owned Sweet Tooth is one of the best things going, and if he bring half the drama and weirdness to Animal Man that Grant Morrison's definitional run did, without treading old ground, this could be the best title on my list here.

Monday, June 6, 2011

My disconnect with many comic readers

Looking at a lot of different geek forums, I have been surprised that this seems to be one of the most popular sentiments about the DC relaunches: "I am so excited about this. I am reading marvel, but now I can read some DC without worrying about lots of old continuity."

This reaction makes me wonder if these people made sure to read all the Spider-Man, Fantastic Four, and Avengers from the 60's to the present before reading any new marvel.

Of course there are titles like Sandman or Y the Last Man. Stuff with a beginning, middle and end. But in superhero comics there is no end, and "beginnings" seem to happen every 10-15 years. Even as a kid I knew this. I never went up to the cashier and asked how could I read detective comics #487 without reading the four hundred and eighty six before it.

A lot of these characters have existed over 75 years. Sure, you can get the archives and check out the art form in it's infancy. But you need know nothing to dive into a mainstream  supers tale!

Don't Be That Guy.

Friday, June 3, 2011

New DCU or old/new DCU or will digitial kill my comics take your pick

So with DC's big annoucment this week we have been getting a lot of questions.  What do we think?  Will it hurt Tribe business?  Will it be a total reboot?

Roy thought it would be a good idea if we had a blog post to answer some of these things.  He thought I should be the one to write it, my guess is because he is now on his weekend.   So here it goes:

The digital annoucnment does not concern me in the slightest.  Most of our customers do not buy digital comics.  Those that do are supplementing their buying that way not replacing.  We have also seen those that buy digital come back and purchase the trades collecting their digital stories.  I am sure you will be reading and hearing about how digital will kill floppy sales.  This may eventually be true.  However they said the same thing almost 12 years ago when both DC and Marvel moved to collected trades of their current runs.  Many people predicted people would move away from monthly to get the collected editions.  What really happened was some people switched over, some bought both, and others got into it just to get the trades.  Only time will tell on digital and the future it holds for the industry.

As for the New DCU.  DC sent an email to retailers explaining that was not a reboot.  It seems they are gonig to be keeping some aspects, if not most, of the current timeline.  As a reader I am very nervous.  Most of my favorite comic characters are DC 2nd and 3rd tier.  They are usually the ones to get the most "reimagining."  As a retailer I am very excited by this.  Right after Infinite Crisis DC did a one year later jump.  Many people picked up those books to see what all the excitment was.  It did not work out as well as it could of, mainly because several creative directions were not to fans liking.  However if this is done right it could greatly increase DC and Tribes sales.  How can I not love that.  DC is also the company that goes out of their way to help  retailers.  Many of these #1, #2, and #3's will be returnable so that we can take a risk and not lose our shirts as it were.

So I guess the over all upshot is Digital no worries.  Reboot (or whatever it is) reader in me nervous.  Retailer in me is excited.

In other news Roy thinks this will change nothing and it is a bunch of hype.

There you go

Monday, March 14, 2011

Marvel vs DC (idiocy I have hear at my shop 1)

" I like Marvel better because it is more realistic." "I like DC better because the heroes are more heroic." " I like Marvel better because the attitude is more modern."

Hardly a week goes by that I do not hear these kinds of comments. Most people know that I despise a lot of what Marvel has done recently(Scarlet Witch, Sentry, Mary Jane), but I can honestly say I love both universes. If I didn't love Marvel's world, there would be no reason for me to hate Joe Quesada. Also, I don't care if someone prefers one or the other.  But it drives me crazy when people tell me these whacked out reasons why they prefer one company over another. "I like Coke better than Pepsi because Coke has water in it."

I think the main problem is a lot of comics fans know just enough to be dangerous. During most of the Silver Age, there was a substantial difference in the two publishers. Marvel was all about misunderstood youth and the dangers of The Man. DC was all about eat plenty of vegetables and go to bed early. But even this is just a generalization. But the college kids and hippies decided marvel was more "hip."

The problem is that I hear this from customers that I am certain are not reading 60's material. Ever since I have been reading, both publishers seem thematically the same. Both universes' heroes have flaws. Both contain grisly villains. Girlfriends stuck in refrigerators, sidekicks beaten to death, heroes on drugs, cops vs heroes, street level heroes, the power of a billion exploding sons, misunderstood youth, moral ambiguity....they are in both.

Also, I am sorry but Marvel is in no way less powerful than DC. Thor, Invisible Woman, Dr. Strange, Magneto, Phoenix, Doom, and others too numerous to mention could probably give Superman a run for his money, if not win the battle. Richards, Pym, or Stark are constantly whipping up very powerful gadgets. Remember, we are not comparing titles we are comparing the whole universes.

So when the Marvel snobs come in prattling on about realism, then I have to wonder the last time a teenager burst into flames or when a giant tried to eat the planet. Also, who the hell wants realism? Put those unrealistic comics down! Realism is the FF land and die of cancer. Realism is Banner is blown to bits. Yay realism! 

A lot of creators have done a lot of work for both publishers, their style and themes can be found in both universes.

Like I said, I really don't care if people like one and not the other. They are depriving themselves of some good stories, though. What is good is all subjective. But just don't tell me any bullshit.  Pepsi has water in it too!


Thursday, March 3, 2011

Giving Back Report

So as many of you know we here at Tribe are big at giving back to the community both local and at large.  It was one of our earliest business decisions.  The goal was to give a portion of our over all profits to help causes we believed in.  As many of you know we have not had much in the way of pay for Roy and I.  However that has not stopped us from trying to raise awareness and money for the causes we love.  So we have asked our customers for help from time to time.  Many of you contributed to Team Tribe when my wife Joansandy was trying to raise money for the Heart Association last year.  Many of you have put spare change in our Comic Book Legal Defense Fund jar we have at the registrar.  Cans of food were brought in last year for the Give to Game.  Comics and games were donated for our Christmas drive whose name I forgot both this past year and the year before.  And Roy and I have followed suit and tried to give product here and there for silent Auctions, raffles, door prizes etc.  Where that was not feasible we gave money.    Anyways this long rambling is a thank you to all who have helped us help others.  Because of Tribe's efforts both Customers and Owners in 2009 we were able to donate (in one form or another) almost $5000.00.  In 2010 we were able to triple that number and give 15,000.00! 

Thanks to all of our customers who have helped for the last 2 years.  I am glad that so many wanted to help us help others.  Here is hoping that 2011 is even better.

That about covers it.


Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Why Tribe?

We have been asked why we are named Tribe.  Well that is a many layered answer.  At the most basic it is because that is what are group of friends call themselves.  We also tried a few creative business ventures in our youth and Tribe Productions was the name we were going to use.  So when Roy and I got the store it seemed very obvious to me what the name should be.  Roy was less convinced and tried for a while to find other names that might work.

The more layered answer is one we have been working on for a while.  Well... working on in a way that it can be explained.   As many of you may have figured out by now Roy and I are die hard liberals.  While there are a few liberal causes each of us separately do not support, by and large the RIGHT would hate us if we ever had any kind of power or pulpit.  In that vein Tribe made perfect sense.  It is a word that captures many of our core philosophy.  At it's heart it is we are our brother's keeper.  We are all of the same tribe and we have a moral obligation to help others and to bring them up.  Both of us would love to live comfortable lives with no want or need.  However neither of us want to bleed anyone else dry to do it.  This is the main reason we have been so active at giving money and goods to local and national charities.  It is also why we only charge retail price on everything even variant covers.

That about covers it.


Thursday, January 27, 2011

Eric's List

Eric's Top 11 for 2010 (Or the Year of the Tiger Roughly Feb10-Jan 11)  also in no particular order:

1. Secret Six: Like Roy this book makes me laugh out loud.  It is dark, funny and twisted in all the good ways.

2. Brightest Day: This book is a worthy successor to 52.   I can't wait each month for the next issue.

3. Morning Glories: This booked grabbed me from the first few pages and still has not let go.

4. Gi Joe/Gi Joe Cobra: Unlike Roy I think both should be read together.  You don't need to to understand the other book but you miss the whole picture.  That said I never thought I would be recommending a GI Joe book.

5. X-Men Second Coming: I thought this was a great story.  X-men the way it should be.  Plus poor Kurt.

6. Avengers Children's Crusade: I loved Young Avengers and this everything and more. Plus a possbile redemption of Scarlet Witch!  Take that Bendis!

7. Hulk: Jeff Parker's run on Hulk may have just started but he has already done the impossible, got me to like the Red Hulk.

8. Green Lantern Emerald Warriors: This book is so good.  I love regular GL but the art is not always great.  This book has great story, great characters, great art.

9. Infinite Vacation: Only #1 of this is out so far, so this might end up sucking.  That said the first issue had such a great fresh idea I was shocked.  Nick Spencer could be the next big writer in the industry is Morning Glories and this are evidence of his talent.

10. Fables: I love loved this book from issue 1 and it just gets better.  The confrontation in issue 100 was great and sets the tone for what is coming. 

11. Captain America: Brubaker makes me love Bucky Cap more than Steve.  His run has been great.  I was not a solo Cap Story fan before this book.  Now I can not get enough.

So there you go, our top 11 for the Year of the Tiger.  We were tempted to do a Kindling of the Year list but thought some of you might stone us for our choices.  We hope to be adding new blogs in the coming weeks.  We welcome your comments and we appreciate your business.

Our Top Eleven Comics of the Year of the Tiger 2010

In honor of Eric's wife's heritage and how many time zones were in the former Soviet Union, we present our top eleven comics of 2010. Eric and I will be doing an individual list, it will be interesting to see how they match up.

Roy's top 11 for 2010 (in no particular order)

1. Secret Six (DC) This title always makes me laugh out loud. This crew is not evil enough to fit in with the villains, but they sure as hell are not heroes.

2. The Thanos Imperative (Marvel) Spinning out of the events of the War of Kings, this series delivers over the top cosmic action. A great roller coaster ride.

3. Green Lantern (DC) I am sure all of you have heard for years how good this series is. They ain't lying.

4. Brightest Day (DC) A great follow up for Blackest Night. The storytelling is similar to 52, with how it jumps around between characters.

5. Uncanny X-Force (Marvel) This book has excellent rhythm. Great dialogue and great action.

6. The Stuff of Legend ((Th3rd World Studios) It comes out infrequently, but this story of toys going into the Dark to save their boy is fantastic.

7. Chew (Image) This book is just plain damn funny. Just read it.

8. Morning Glories (Image) I was hooked from the first issue. Just what is going on at this sinister school?

9. Secret Avengers (Marvel) This is the only consistently good Avengers title. Brubaker always writes good cloak and dagger stuff.

10. G.I. Joe (IDW) The relaunch of G.I. Joe has been fantastic. If you like military action, you should be reading this.

11. G.I. Joe: Cobra (IDW) The darker, more psychological "sister-book" of G.I. Joe. Explore the inner workings of Cobra.