Thee Comic Column #115: Leaving Marvel Monthly

sad hulkThe last time I stopped buying Marvel books was maybe 2010 or 2011; Bendis was writing Avengers but after trying to keep up only to have my wallet smacked out of my hand again and again as he added more and more titles to his workload and the endless events began happening I just could not keep up (that’s not a Bendis-oriented compliant – I love that he can write so much so well and weave such intricate, multi-act, multi-book story scaffolding. I just can’t afford to keep up with buying it all). Other than that, the needle at the self-proclaimed “House of Ideas” really seemed to be skipping. Then a friend introduced me to Rick Remender and both his Uncanny X-Force and Venom titles and soon I realized Marvel was really putting their game back together. Ever since I feel as though they’ve done an amazing job streamlining their Universe, putting it into a real tight working order that keeps most of the old school fans like myself happy and helps usher in newcomers brought in by the sheer perfection of Kevin Feige’s Marvel Movie Universe. I’ve read all Remender’s stuff, tried to read all BMB’s X-Men stuff (and just generally found his mechanism of bringing the young first class into the present day was a potentially terrible idea that he made absolutely amazing), have followed the Hickman Avengers stuff from a distance and really wanted to jump in on the Guardians of the Galaxy stuff. However, even as we prepare for this Spring’s next big step in the evolution of the MCU, I am bidding buying monthly Marvel Comics goodbye.

But why? I think the company is at the top of its game so what gives?


I just can’t read everything I want with the $3.99/$4.99 price tag. I know it’s not just Marvel, almost everything is up there nowadays – not everything, but most, and that’s fine but honestly, there are SO many great indie, first time and creator-owned books out right now that I would just rather give that money to. Nothing against Marvel – this is actually going to be really hard to do. And I’m telling myself I will go back and grab things like Kelly Sue Deconnick’s Captain Marvel and Guardians of the Galaxy in trade but I tend to buy so many monthlies that it doesn’t leave a hell of a lot of maneuvering room in the wallet for collections, especially not with my ongoing addiction to buying music. Add to this the fact that there’s still books like Y The Last Man, the last five books of Scalped and Brandon Grahmam, Simon Roy, Farel Dalrymple and Giannis Milonogiannis’s surreal re-boot of Prohpet (an insistent recommendation by my co-host on Drinking with Comics Mike Wellman) and there’s a lot of reading to be done before I get back around to shelling out $20 a trade to catch up on the Marvel stuff.

But I’ll always stay in touch. I’ll see the movies opening day and I’ll read articles about what’s going on, talk to people, have friends keep me up to date, because like I said, I really think this is the best time to be reading Marvel since the 80s. Everything is engineering to work together and the storytelling is coming into a scope that is insanely cosmic, without sacrificing the ‘street level’ side of things. So yeah Hulk, the words coming out of my mouth are making me sad too. But I’ll tell you what, as soon as I sell my first novel’s movie rights I’ll come back, if you’ll have me.

Of course you will. In the meantime, keep kicking ass!!!


Can’t find a comic shop? You can always use old reliable Comic Shop Locator at 1-800-COMIC-BOOK. Or you can take some of my recommendations. If you live in the greater Chicagoland area I recommend any of the wonderful four locations of Amazing Fantasy Books. In Los Angeles it’s The Comic Bug. Las Vegas it’s Alternate Reality Comics. San Francisco? Try the Isotope Comic Lounge and if you happen to venture a little further North I’d say you have to visit The Escapist Comic Book Store in Berkley (with the wonderful Dark Carnival Books next door and owned by the same folks). Read on!!!

Shawn C Baker

Shawn C Baker

Shawn lives in Los Angeles where he co-hosts Drinking w/ Comics, writes screenplays and fiction and has been known to drink quite a bit of beer. Good beer.

3 Responses to Thee Comic Column #115: Leaving Marvel Monthly
  1. […] right, a scant four weeks after I used this space to humbly declare that I am going to stop buying M...
  2. […] is not a coincidence that my previous column outlined my plans to leave Marvel Comics as a monthly r...
  3. Tommy Reply

    I’ve had to do the same thing. Just too many excellent indie gems out there to be able to afford everything else.

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