And so it begins.On August 30th, Super-Fly Comics and Games celebrated its fourth anniversary as they continue to be one of the most awesome reasons to visit Yellow Springs, Ohio. Store owner Tony Barry and the staff have been kicking it hardcore to the comics crowd since 2007 and oddly enough, their anniversary landed on a very serendipitous moment in comics history. That night, Super-Fly joined comic shops across the country to usher in DC’s New 52 line in a midnight August 31 release. There was quite a crowd attending the shop for the release of Flashpoint #5 and Justice League #1, the end of one DC Universe and the beginning of another, known widely as the DC new Universe or DCnU. As everyone waited for midnight to arrive, cakes of all kinds were served, geek comradery was had, Super-Fly’s awesome stock of merchandise was browsed and excitement built as store manager Jared Whittaker assured everyone that the hype for the DCnU was much deserved and everyone could relax—something he had tweeted to that effect earlier.
Close to midnight, the store got an amazing surprise when Jared got a call from comics writer extraordinaire Gail Simone! It turns out, Gail had re-tweeted Jared’s tweet and then (with some helpful handiwork from former store co-owner Tad Cleveland) wanted to call the shop. We were all floored and the store fell into a nervous hush as Jared talked to Gail. Then, knowing I’m a big fan of hers, he waved me over and put me on the phone, which was a thrill. (Jared, you are the man!) Gail is the writer of the upcoming DC New 52 books Batgirl and is also co-writer (with Ethan Van Sciver) on Fury of Firestorm.
I wish I could say I engaged Gail Simone in a classy, sophisticated way but in the excitement I just got all giddy fanboy. I told her I was a big fan and thanked her for calling the store. She thanked me and told me how excited she was for the launch of the DCnU and that she envied all the fans and retailers who were out doing all the geek things she loved that night with the midnight release, and she had just been thrilled all day. I felt great about how friendly and cool Gail was. After another minute of chatting and telling her how excited I was for Batgirl, (I’m excited for Firestorm too but forgot to mention it.) I put Jared back on, who put on Tony. Tony also thanked Gail for calling and told her how tonight coincided with the shop’s anniversary. Tony also told Gail about the Super-Fly podcast and asked if she would be a future guest on the show. So keep listening to the podcast, as Gail could show up in the future! As Tony and Gail’s conversation drew to a close, it was five minutes to midnight.
Tony took the moment to draw out a bottle of Champagne and told the crowd that the last four years would not be possible without them, thanked them for being part of the comics culture, and toasted to four more years (and hopefully many more!). After popping the cork, adults were offered Champagne, while the younger set bought bottled Cokes. I was first in line to buy Justice League #1 and the line behind me was long, with copies of the standalone print issue quickly selling out, leaving only combo print/digital comics for the remaining folks in line. These were gone by the next business day. Nationwide, orders had sold the book out, with a second printing also being fully sold out in orders and a third printing quickly announced.
As an official “sidekick” of Super-Fly, I have stepped up to write reviews of all 52 books, in as timely a manner as possible. Admittedly, I am a DC fan boy, but a well tempered one. I did not read Brightest Day, or Flashpoint. Additionally, many of the DC books I was getting are now no more (such as Doom Patrol, Freedom Fighters & Secret Six) with other books I follow falling outside the core of the DCU (such as T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents and Jonah Hex). I have long since given up on pretty much all Bat, Super, and team books, and a big reason is I can’t afford them as much as I once could. But the DCnU is just so exciting; I want to be on the ground floor for all of it. Thanks to Super-Fly’s awesome pre-order 50% off offer on all 52 books, it’s possible for me to do this. I will get all 52 first issues, and while I hope I can sustain buying 52 comics a month, realistically it will be hard. Therefore, I will really be discriminating in what second issues I pick up and want my purchases to be justified. I want to go into this new DCU with a clean break from the past and an open mind to see what lies ahead. I also really want to help Super-Fly give its fans a head’s up whether a book is worth checking out or not. I’m looking forward to it! And there couldn’t be a better place than Super-Fly to celebrate the new DCnU all throughout September!