LESSON 1: HOW TO READ COMICS

You don’t have to look very hard to find something comic book related: whether it’s video games, the movies or TV shows — it seems no matter where you go, you’ll be exposed to a comic book medium. And, yes, while it is incredibly easy to watch them, some feel it’s not so much to read them.

I can’t blame them. Since their debut in the 30’s and 40’s, there hasn’t ever really been a stop to the superhero comic which can make it incredibly daunting to find a jumping on point. Well, I’m here to tell you isn’t nowhere near as daunting as it seems. In fact,

IT’S EASY!

let’s begin!

WHERE (AND HOW) TO START:

MARVEL UNLIMITED APP

Okay, so, you saw, say, Spider-Man: Homecoming, you liked it, you had fun, and now you want to know where to get them. The easiest way is to find your local comic book store and browse their shelves, but, if you live in a town where you don’t have one, comics are also being sold in most book retail stores, new and old. Stores like Barnes & Noble to Zia Records (no, seriously) are both carrying comics.

If you’re looking for something a little more convenient, there are also plenty of comic book apps and websites home to countless titles. Most require a small monthly fee, but also give full one-week free trial memberships for you to try out. Ones I would recommend are Comixology and Marvel Unlimited for beginners and they have libraries large enough to get lost in.

So, you know where to look, but you don’t know what to look for. No problem! Most, if not all, comic book movies and TV shows take their inspiration from written stories and some are outright adaptations ( “300” & “Watchmen” ). This makes knowing what to look for easier, but not without a price. Unfortunately, if you’re looking for Avengers: Engdame Vol. 1, you won’t find one. However, you will find comics that its scenes are paying homage to.

(Avengers: Endgame – 2019 / All New All Different Captain America – 2015)

Sites like: IGNCBR, and Reddit are what I use; they typically have little synopses of the stories and are written by other readers so you get a more authentic feel for the stories. Using more than one site to find recommendations in common is always the best way to go, when in doubt, hear what others are talking about.

My personal recommendation is to start looking at comics featuring your favorite character from the films. Not only do you get to see more of your badass hero in action, but you may also learn something about something you didn’t know before. Another tool I use is simply Googling “recommended reading” with my favorite character.

Google search results for Spider-Man Recommended Reading (2019)

Whether you find yourself in a thrift store, a library or your local comic shop, remember, you don’t have to be a superhero to tackle these issues.

That’s all for now and I will see you for the next lesson.

Until then, class dismissed!

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Author: R.J. LEE

Over the past decade, it seems pop culture hasn’t become just “pop” anymore. Comic book movies are multi-billion dollar corporations, comics aren’t only for weekly Archie specials and video games have become an electronic sport competing with the likes of the Super Bowl! What happened? Where did the time go? It can all be a lot to take in and overwhelming at times, but what if I told you it doesn’t have to be? Like everything in life, nothing is hard to learn, you just need the right teacher and that’s where I come in. I’ll be your Lingo Liaison, your Coach for Comics, your Tutor for Trends, your Video Game Guru, your sensei from Sin City — My name is R.J. and I’m here to answer your FAQ’s of Life.

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