Comic book lovers should be green with envy. Or turn into The Hulk. I shop for my comics, on occasion, at Bookery Fantasy: America’s Largest Comic Book Store. Or that’s what they claim to be. It’s hard for me to imagine that any place near me is the largest anything because we just don’t make that much of an impression on people. Aviation might have been invented here, sure, but was that enough for us to get a shuttle from NASA to be included in the National Airforce Museum? Nope.
There’s a section of the store that’s across the street from it. I’ve never been in there until today and it made me feel uncomfortable. I’ve been in comic book stores before and it’s always interesting. The staff keeps away from me for the most part, but they’ll answer any questions I have and show me where to find the comic I’m looking for. But this was like walking into a stereotypical comic book store where every guy is a social introvert and has no idea what a female looks like. It was that uncomfortable.
This section was filled with roleplaying games such as Dungeons and Dragons, a War Room (the gaming room), and an area where you could purchase back copies of Playboy and other magazines and paperbacks. The basement contained an area where you could buy $1 comics, but I didn’t dare enter there alone. I’ve been told that there was a chance I’d be clubbed in the head and dragged off somewhere.
There were plenty of books to look through, mainly fantasy and science fiction. I spied Dean Koontz in the horror section and shall never understand why he’s categorized as a horror writer (I consider him a thriller/suspense writer and a brilliant one at that). I did manage to walk away with two books that I recognized: Interview with a Vampire by Anne Rice and A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle. There was a book that I spotted while going through the bookshelves titled: Surfing Samurai Robots by Mel Gilden. Taking a quick look at the cover and reading the summary I decided that this was a book that was meant to be shared to the masses via my Sunday vlogs. And oh, it shall.
Running across the street to the actual comic book part of Bookery, I tried to find the BOOM Studios comics by Stan Lee on my own. I found the recent titles, but I needed the first comics, so Dad got some help before I could get the chance to even really try. I wasn’t aware that Stan Lee had written a new series and though he is a comic book writer, I find him to be absolutely brilliant. He became my writing idol after I heard him speak about his process and his thoughts on Superman flying. Stan Lee had said that Superman strikes a pose and off he goes into the sky and that didn’t make any sense to him, so when he created Thor, he decided to use Thor’s mighty hammer as his way of flying: Thor must swing his hammer and then throw it in the direction he wants to go in which made more sense to him and a lot of sense to me.
I had done my Stan Lee research the night before to see if there was any other series by him that I was missing and it turned out that I was also missing the DC collaboration that he did back in 2000-2001. While I was looking at Superman comics in hopes of finding the Stan Lee Just Imagine series, Dad decided to ask for help again. He called my name which sparked the attention of the owner of the store who was helping us at the time. The owner asked if I was aware of the Sheena: Queen of the Jungle comics, which believe me, I was quite aware of them. The owner then assumed that I had heard this reference from other comic book lovers (which I have not, he was the first) and decided that before I leave I should be shown the original Sheena comic books.
There is a major difference between 1940’s Sheena and 2007 Sheena. Comic book heroines weren’t dressed in bikinis for one. They were dressed, though far less skimpier than what you would see out in public, like a lady. Their hair was usually curled and there were a lot of dresses and skirts. Even Wonder Woman had a skirt and shorter, curled hair (she was even given a boyfriend at one point so that women didn’t get the idea that they should be independent). Women of comic books seemed to have changed from having some meat on their bones and being fairly proportionate to these creatures with no waist and large breasts and butts. And let’s not forget the sex appeal! A comic book heroine can not be a heroine unless there is plenty of sex appeal, so the women must show more cleavage than ever before! Men also had changes: they’re far more muscular now than their 1940’s counterpart (I’m looking at you Superman!). You can see this dramatic change in men’s muscles even in action figures. Compare a Batman action figure from the 1980’s to now. Batman has more pronounced abs than ever before.
I told my mom about being the whole Sheena: Queen of the Jungle thing and she simply said that there shouldn’t be any comparison because I have the silent ‘h’ at the end of my name. But then that awakens a whole controversy about my name that goes back to high school: Because my name is spelled Sheenah, would the pronunciation actually be she-nah instead of she-nuh? What are your thoughts on it?