No mid-life crisis would be complete without some sort of return to the obsessions of my youth. Since I can no longer live on a diet of Yoo-Hoo's and Twinkie's and actual porn has replaced my need to fantasize about sex with every girl I ever saw from 1978-1985, I've decided instead to start reading comic books again.
I stopped reading comic books while still in junior high school. I didn't enter a comic book store again until 1987 when I was working weekends at an oldies station. On Sunday's I ran a show that required me to pay attention about 1 minute out of every 15 and so, one day on the way to work I stopped at a comic store and picked up a few books. It was a short-lived return to the genre and I only actually read two complete short serials, one 4 issues and the other 12.
Now, here I am at 41 looking to start again (until I realize that I'm too old to care about this stuff anymore). I've decided to get some graphic novels which are usually 12 issue stories in one book. The novels aren't worth anything to collectors (it's the original 12 comics that appreciate) but they are a great way to get an entire years storyline in one dose.
To that end I've been shopping on Amazon. In the course of reading numerous reviews, one common theme stands out. Whenever anyone starts talking about great comics they always mention the same two books: The Watchmen and Batman: The Dark Knight Returns.
These two books are mentioned with such reverence that it's scary. I've read at least three reviews that list The Watchmen as the best comic ever! This from a group of people who will spend an hour arguing over stuff so insignificant as to define their status as true uber-nerds. Yet, they have no problem saying, "The Watchmen? Best comic ever. Followed closely by Batman: The Dark Knight Returns."
By now you may have figured out where I'm going with this and why I'm writing a long post about freakin' comic books. Because, in my bookshelf, I still have the two comic serials that I bought back in 1987.... the only comics I own. The Watchmen and Batman: The Dark Knight Returns.
What are the odds?! Out of the blue, in 1987, I decide to buy a few comic books, I keep them for 18 years and lo-and-behold.... they end up being considered The Godfather of the comic world.