Category Archives: Comics

ha ha no

It’s a funny joke right? I mean, my first thought was to laugh, but after a couple of seconds, I just got tired.

Valiant is advertising the most gimmicked variant of all time for this December, and they’re asking retailers to order 250 copies of the new Quantum and Woody title to get it. And I just… no. No. You can’t actually promote how ridiculous stuff like this is and then turn around and ply your very own stipulations. It’s not funny, it’s part of the problem.

Sell us the story. Then we’ll talk.

Comics Are For Kids

“Kids are our future.”

You’ve all heard this. Whether it’s spoken in response to climate change, supporting girls to begin working in STEM fields or politics, or comic books. While I have opinions on many things, I’m an expert on one thing.

From day one, I wanted my store to have a vast all ages section. And not for the reasons many stores do. I have no interest in putting a child in a corner so their parents could get rid of them for a while. I am not a babysitter. I wanted somewhere kids would willingly go, a space that was all their own. I’m still building on that, but the section has come a long way since Variant Edition opened.

I’ll admit, there have been some drawbacks. Money is tight, so I can only grow the section when I have some room in the budget, but I’ve been able to find some amazing books along the way. There was the time a customer (who has two sons) asked if there could be more books with young boys in them. I had been growing the section for a fictional Young Danica, finding more and more books I felt would have had a positive impact on me as a child. I had neglected to add books with positive male characters. He was also kind enough to remind me to focus on books with boys, sans “punching is the answer” (you would be amazed to discover the number of male-focused books that contain this). I have the weirdest blinders on when I’m ordering, and a lot of my customers who are parents have been helping me immensely.

I’ve been keeping my eye out for books about talking out problems, about girls going in STEM careers, LGBTQ+ kids being loved and accepted, princesses who run their lives, dinosaurs who are helpful friends, anything positive that will help build a kid up strong when the world comes knocking to crush them down. And yes, I look for books that I believe make me stronger, even now.

Business talk time. When I see other comic stores ignoring what is a huge and growing market, I get sad. Angry. Disappointed at their unwillingness to be a better business. Yes, that makes my job easier, but wouldn’t it be nice if all children could go to any comic store and find something magical, just for them? Brandon and I work hard to market comics to all age ranges. It would be so easy (and limiting) to market to people our age and up. People who have been reading comics for decades and are somehow more “justified” to be in a book store. I see a lot of customers stepping on their child’s wonder, possibly destroying a habit before it’s formed.

You can’t raise a reader if you begin by teaching restrictions (and no, I’m not talking about age restrictions – I always read above my age group, but I realize there are limitations).

There is no such thing as a “boy comic” or a “girl comic”. There are stories, and if your child is interested in it, and the content is age appropriate, give it a try. This could be the gateway to a future career. It could be the start of a passion. It could just be a wonderful phase of reading about dinosaurs. We all had those. We’re not all archeologists, but wasn’t it nice to dream about digs in Egypt when we were 8?

Comics Taste Test for Sept 13, 2017

Happy new comic book day, party people!

Here at Submet, we’re starting up a weekly feature where we gather up all of our #preNCBD (pre New Comic Book Day) tweets into one easily digestible blog post so that everyone can get a little taste of what’s hitting the stands.

For a full list of what’s coming out, feel free to check out Variant Edition’s Incoming Post from this week.

Brandon Schatz // Twitter // Facebook
Danica LeBlanc // Twitter

Submetropolitan is powered by Variant Edition Comics + Culture – Edmonton’s best source for comics, used books + mindful pop culture // Submet on Facebook
Variant Edition // Website // Twitter // Facebook // Instagram

Comics Taste Test for Sept 6th, 2017

Testing out a little thing in preparation for THE WORLD TO COME.

Hmm.

HMM…

 

Brandon Schatz // Twitter // Facebook
Danica LeBlanc // Twitter

Submetropolitan is powered by Variant Edition Comics + Culture – Edmonton’s best source for comics, used books + mindful pop culture.
Variant Edition // Website // Twitter // Facebook // Instagram

#VERecommends: Beauty

WHAT IT IS: A young woman wishes for beauty in order for her life to be better, but dudes are horrible, and so is she.

FROM THE PUBLISHER: When Coddie unintentionally delivers a fairy from the spell that held her prisoner, she does not realize how poisoned the wish is she gets in return. From repulsive and stinking of fish she becomes perceived as magnetically beautiful, which does not help her in her village. A young local lord saves her but soon it becomes apparent her destiny may be far greater.

WHY YOU SHOULD READ IT: Beauty is a dark modern fairy tale in a handsome hardcover volume. While the story features familiar light fantasy trappings, the story itself veers headfirst into a vicious cautionary tale with lush illustrations. While there are few redeeming characteristics about many of the cast, the story is compelling, taking what at first blush appears to be a more standard fairy tale and adding modern storytelling blemishes to drive the story through a few bloody curves to quite a surprising ending. Definitely not for children, unless you want them to learn some tough lessons really fast.

Brandon Schatz // Twitter // Facebook

Submetropolitan is powered by Variant Edition Comics + Culture – Edmonton’s best source for comics, used books + mindful pop culture.

Variant Edition // Website // Twitter // Facebook // Instagram

Breathe

Another day is swiftly ticking to an end, and it looks like something has to give once more. I am committed to making sure words appear on this site, however, so welcome back to another garbage post.

You’re welcome.

01. Over the past few weeks, I’ve been having odd fits where it gets hard to breathe. These only tend to last for a few seconds, but can be prolonged depending on what caused the attack in the first place. I’m assuming this is what panic attacks are, so yay. Very lucky to have those in my life. Topics to avoid in order to prevent me from slight hyperventilation? Well, dying, mostly. Or anything having to do with experiencing loss. I have some things that I’m working on right now, and I’m not sure it’s going so hot. But maybe sharing this will help? I don’t know.

02. What I do know is that while aspects of my life have definitely shifted as of late, many other areas are shifting towards a bit of clarity. I’ve discovered that opening up my options has given myself a lot more breathing room. Allowing for thoughts of many paths instead of single paths has been freeing, and has helped with any anxiety that has crept in lately. Also breathing. Breathing is wonderful.

03. Something that really resonated with me this week? The Big Moose one shot from Archie Comics. 

This oversized comic featured three great stories about Moose Mason, one of which I think might be the most heartfelt story I’ve read all year. It’s the second story in this book, written by Ryan Cady with art by Thomas Pitilli and Glenn Whitmore, with Jack Morelli on letters. The story explores how Moose sees himself – a well meaning meathead of a teen, just trying to do his best with the abilities that he has. He always has the best of intentions, even if he lets his temper get the better of him sometimes. He also lends his big heart so easily that his friends will pretty much do whatever they can to help him out. It’s… it’s a really great story, and I implore all of you to try and give it a read. It definitely made me feel better about life in general, if even for a little while.

04. I don’t want the tenor of this update to alarm any of you. Life is… life is actually pretty good right now, but I’m trying to get better at admitting when things aren’t exactly perfect. Pretending doesn’t help and didn’t help. In fact, it gave the appearance that I didn’t care when things got rough. “Everything will be fine” is not always a great response, especially when a person just needs to hear “This is bad and I’m scared too” before you start trying to fix a thing. I’m learning, I hope. This is me reaching out, even just a little.

Thank you for reading. The next post will be this week’s edition of Doctor Whooch, which gets a little sexy. You’ve been warned.

Talk with you soon.

Elsewhere: Danica Talks Secret Empire

Hey, were you wondering if Variant Edition was going to get dressed up in Nazi collaborator paraphernalia?

We aren’t. But you can hear Danica talk about it a bit more over at The Daily Dotwhere she summarizes things quite succinctly with this line:

“People shouldn’t be cosplaying as Nazis. Period.”

You think that wouldn’t have to be something that should be said, but 2017 has been one hell of a year. Can the bullshit stop now? That would be great.

You Read These With Your Eyes // January 18th, 2017

On some weeks (here’s hoping most weeks) Brandon goes through everything that came in at Variant Edition and pulls out his picks for great introductory reads. Your milage may vary.

This week, there are dystopian futures, wizards, and grime-covered bible stories mixed in with some more straight forward superhero fare. Enjoy!

Continue reading You Read These With Your Eyes // January 18th, 2017

You Read These With Your Eyes // January 11th, 2017

On some weeks (here’s hoping most weeks) Brandon goes through everything that came in at Variant Edition and pulls out his picks for great introductory reads. Your milage may vary.

01. OCTAVIA BUTLER’S KINDRED GN (Abrams Comicarts)
by Octavia Butler, Damian Duffy & John Jennings

This classic sci-fi novel is adapted into a beautiful graphic novel. A couple of notes: I have yet to read the original novel, and I’m only halfway through this book, but if you do a quick search, you’ll be able to find unending articles about this book’s importance to the world of pop culture. From my experience so far (as though that particularly matters) there’s good reason for this. Whether you’re a fan of the original novel, or want to experience a particularly powerful and poignant piece of fiction, give this book a read.

(I’ll be sure to give my full thoughts on the book later. Stay tuned.)

02. GRAVE LILIES #1 (Z2 Comics)
by Cullen Bunn & George Kambadais

Cullen Bunn is one of the most prolific writers in the industry today, and for good reason. He’s one of the best, especially when it comes to creator owned content, which brings us to Grave Lilies. Along with co-creator George Kambadais, Bunn tells the story for four young women who are awoken to discover they don’t know where they are, what powers they have, and why they are being hunted. The first issue sets up an intriguing plot that will be very interesting to see play out. Keep in mind: this series comes out from Z2 Comics, a great small publisher – but as it comes from a small publisher, many stores will not stock this book, or if they do, will need to know if you’re interested in continuing with the series, as orders from smaller companies are difficult to adjust orders for.

03. DETECTIVE COMICS #948 (DC Comics)
By James Tynion IV, Marguerite Bennett, Ben Oliver & Marilyn Patrizio w/ Dave Wielgosz, Chris Conroy & Mark Doyle

Batwoman Begins here in the highly anticipated prologue to her own ongoing series. This story welcomes Batwoman writer Marguerite Bennett to the creative team to help set up the new series, and introduce a great new character to Gotham. As is typical with Batwoman stories, the art is gorgeous, with Ben Oliver turning in some of the best work of his career as the story pulls on some threads from previous Detective stories to kick off something exciting and new.

04. UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #16 (Marvel Comics)
By Ryan North, Will Murray, Erica Henderson, Rico Renzi & Travis Lanham w/ Charles Beecham and Wil Moss

It’s Squirrel Girl’s 15th Anniversary, and Marvel has put together an amazing issue to celebrate the occasion. Not only do you get an amazing new story from the usual creative team, but Squirrel Girl co-creator Will Murray swings by for a sequence, with a cameo from Steve Ditko. Also, the story itself is a great one-off story that runs through various eras of Doreen’s life. Heartfelt and kind, like all issues of Squirrel Girl, this is a book to check out if you’re looking for a pick me up, or if you’ve always wanted a good spot to check the book out.

05. JUSTICE LEAGUE / POWER RANGERS #1 (DC Comics / Boom! Studios)
By Tom Taylor, Stephen Byrne & Deron Bennett w/ Kristy Quinn and Dafna Pleban

In full on insane news, this series exists, and it’s a ton of fun. The story begins in the Power Rangers’ world as things suddenly and swiftly go awry, bringing in… Batman? Wait, what? Yeah. So this is bonkers, but in the best ways possible. If the team-up intrigues you in any way, I highly suggest you try the book.

For a complete list of what’s out this week, you can check out our shop’s weekly Incoming post where we list everything that we’re getting.