Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Memory Lane Part 4: Flashpoint

Now, as a kid, I never was one for asking for much. Any comics mentioned earlier were bought back from the shops for me (other than one issue of Mighty World of Marvel) so the first comics I remember wanting, needing and asking for were...well, memories are a funny thing.

I clearly remember walking into the local NSS newsagent and seeing the cover of Justice League of America #167 calling out at me from the bottom shelf. I later managed to pick up #168 too, a rare two-issue run for me as a kid. You could never guarantee which titles you could find and even if you could, limited funds meant you'd have to prioritise what you could find, coming back later for additional purchases when your coffers filled up a bit.
As a result, my early comics reading was pretty eclectic and early on, I had no real favourite title or publisher. I read whatever I could get my hands on, although superhero comics were always the genre of choice...very occasionally, I'd pick up (or trade for) copies of stuff like Sgt Rock, Jonah Hex, Weird War Tales, Ghosts and House of Mystery but those were always picked up when there was nothing else available.

Anyway, those JLA issues (introducing me to the Reverse  Flash, who I instantly loved as he was like the Flash only yellow, my favourite colour as a kid...though now it's black, so what does that say about my psychology?) were the ones that were later revisited in Identity Crisis but more importantly they were the ones that I always remembered as being my first "collected" comics.

Well, until recently that is as I've had to check the Grand Comics Database to check dates because I also recall another first comic that screamed out at me. This was Brave and the Bold #151: I distinctly recall the split screen cover, with Flash running away on the cosmic treadmill. It was the Flash  that caught my eye and soon this would become my first favourite series (and Jim Aparo became my favourite artist as I was taken with the way he drew Batman's noggin for some reason. Later early favourite artists included Dick Dillin and Sal Buscema...until I discovered John Byrne's X-men in Rampage Monthly and everything changed).
I bought this off the spinner rack at Pops Newsagents in town and I also recall this as my first issue. The GCDB states both issues came out in the same month, cover dated June 1979 so I would have been about 7-8. I think BB was actually the first one and JLA must have come later: BB is more clear in my mind a being a revelation and must have made me look at the local comics, hence the response to the JLA issue.

With these baby steps, I had started my own comic collecting...

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