Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Trading Up

Last year, I made a switch. It began with Scalped. I somehow managed to miss an issue and it began. After years of watching comics pile up all over the place and panicking over missing issues, I started to convert to reading certain things in trade paperback.

And in certain ways, my appreciation for the medium has grown like I never could have imagined.

Two weeks ago, I picked up Scalped Vol. 3 Dead Mothers and fell in love with what the comics medium can do. Unlike television, comics gives you time to consider a character and his situation. The world of lead character, Dash Bad Horse is a harsh one and you have to become hard to live within it. Where it would have taken me seven months to maybe not realize this in comics form, in trade, I knew instantly that I had in my hands something special.

Six years ago, I stopped reading Captain America. I'm glad I did.

It gave me a chance to go back and read it in trade. Having just read "The Winter Soldier" and "Red Menace" trades, I now know and am grateful for my lack of patience with it the first time around. I love, Love, LOVE this book and oddly enough it was because of a shirtless Namor.

Let me explain.

There was this scene where Cap and The WW2 Invaders were in a brutal Russian snowstorm having just battled back a small rogue uprising. There there were huddled around a Human Torch generated campfire and there he was, a shirtless Namor, just sorta hanging back.

Thanks to the realism of Michael Lark, the image was, at once, goofy and inspiring. It allowed me to realize the stark contrast between soldier and superhero and the line someone like Captain America had to tread between the two. In trade, I have come to appreciate characters I once took for granted.

In trade, I have discovered the brilliance of pairing Action Philosophers scribe Fred Van Lente with the Power Pack.

In trade, I want more and am getting it.

I have not given up on the monthly. I still love the weekly rush of walking into a shop on a Wednesday. The trade allows me to defer that rush for a rainy cold day.

That said, I'm looking for new things to read so...



ShellyS said...

Have you read Criminal? That's been coming out in comics, then in trades. I love it. Pure noir.

I also picked up the trades for Crossing Midnight. I loved the comic.

I'm reading Scalped in trades, too.

Scotus said...

Given that it's almost Halloween, I'll recommend the TPBs of Wildstorm's short-lived comics line based on horror films (Nightmare on Elm Street, Friday the 13th, and Texas Chainsaw Massacre).

I'm not sure why Wildstorm thought those properties would be appropriate for ongoing series, as opposed to the mini-series and one-shots they're doing now, but the TPBs have some surprisingly good stuff.

BIG MIKE said...

I've got the paperback omnibus of SCUD: The Disposable Assassin and it's pretty much the best bathroom reading there is.

Jeff said...

Criminal is a good one to read in trade form, although I understand there are some extras that don't come in the trades. Not that big a deal to me.

Have you read 100 Bullets? That one is perfect to be read as a trade, because the stories are pretty complex and it makes a lot more sense read altogether.

DMX, The Walking Dead, Fables, Lucifer...good series all.

Devon Sanders said...

I adore 100 Bullets! It's what got me back into comics.

Devon Sanders said...

And yes, Criminal is on my future reading list.

William said...

My RSS feeder backed up, so I'm a bit late to this party. Anyway, I used to work for a distributor and was getting floppies hand over fist that I couldn't keep track of. I made the decision, right then and there, to "trade up" on a bunch of series that I loved, but just couldn't handle on a monthly basis anymore. Criminal, The Boys, Fables, Jack of Fables, Noble Causes, Scalped, Invincible and DMZ all fell into that category. It gave me a new appreciation for those titles, plus I'm more excited about a collection being released than the monthly, as it has become more of an "event" to me.