Tag Archives: wolverine and the x-men

The Weekly Haul – August 27th, 2014

I have reached a disturbing milestone in my life as a comic reader.  I have done something — something that I once deemed TOO TERRIBLE TO EVER DO…

I sent comics to the CGC for grading.

For those of you who are unfamiliar, the CGC, or Certified Guarantee Company (not Comic Grading Company, which I’ve always stupidly thought), is one of the largest (THE largest?) comic grading companies out there.  What they essentially do is take your comic, use a standardized method of describing the condition of your book, give a score of 0.5 (poor) to 10.0 (gem mint), and then (here’s the scary part for me) encapsulate the book in a clear container (to quote their website) “through a combination of compression and ultrasonic vibration”.

Caution: A combination of compression and ultrasonic vibration may result in vinegar strokes.

Anyway, my big problem with the whole CGC grading/slabbing is that the comic becomes no longer readable.  To me, collecting comics has always (for the most part) been intricately tied to reading.   I like having my runs of titles, going back into the long boxes, and rereading old stuff, discovering interesting things that I may have missed.  I get that we live in the surging digital age of comics, where finding a book is as simple as going onto Comixology and downloading it to the iPad, but — call me an old man — there’s something about holding the book.

So why this time?  I came across two comics that I have relatively no interest in reading but — I’m no dummy — I understand their importance in comics history —



Incredible Hulk #180 and #181 are the cameo and first full appearance (respectively) of the future X-Man, Wolverine.  Granted I am a HUGE X-Men fan and, therefore, having these issues are fun for me, but I am NOT a Wolverine fan.   These issues, while I love the original whiskered-Wolvie, are not special to me.  I don’t know if I’d ever sell them — and I’m convinced that people who slab their books are primarily interested in resale value — but I could part with these (over most of my collection) and be fine with it.

I will give the CGC this — I’m really excited to find out what grade they get.


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The Haul Catchup – April 3rd, 10th, and 17th, 2013

Well, obviously things over here at The Weekly Haul have been pretty quiet for the past few weeks.  I should really just stop calling attention to my inability to keep up with reading my comics — is it a function that I’m buying too many books?  Or that I’m just not that excited in the titles that I’m reading?  I’m going to take a look at that very thing in the rundown.  But first…

Here’s something I got excited about the other day — another one of the fantastic (typed stuffed with sarcasm) Marvel-sponsored children’s prose stories based on their characters.  This time it’s not Namor in his panties, but rather good old Tony Stark AKA Iron Man!  He’s turning out to be one The Boy’s favorites (though he picked up a Mr. Sinister action figure this past week at the comic shop)

The Offending Object
The Offending Object
In the next installment, we learn about the villainous Mandy Mandarin.
In the next installment, we learn about the villainous Mandy Mandarin.

Anyway, past the jump, I’ll break down the past three weeks’ 51 (!!! so close to having DC sue me!) comics into my version of The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly.  For the sake of your sanity and my fingers, I’ll talk about only the highlights and lowlights.  And holy god, there were some real lowlights…

I also want to give a quick plug for a project over at Kickstarter.  Ray Sumser, a really excellent NY-based artist, is working on his newest adventure, an all-original all-ages comic called LYK and Bear.  Ray’s a real talent (and a nice guy), so go make his dreams come true, support his comic, and get some great rewards out of the deal.


At the homefront, The Boy is still having a good time terrorizing his little sister, collecting Squinkies, and getting ready for his upcoming dance recital.  That’s right, he’s still lacing up slipping on his tap shoes and fa-lapping across the studio each Saturday morning.

This photo will certainly haunt him in his teenage years...
This photo will certainly haunt him in his teenage years…

And The Bull?  She’s also pretty damn cute, if I do say so myself…

cuddlemecrochet.etsy.com -- advertising at The Weekly Haul for your convenience
Hat by cuddlemecrochet.etsy.com — advertising at The Weekly Haul for your convenience!

Okay, enough child pimping.  Let’s get to these books.  Again, I’m going to do things a little bit differently this time.   I thought it would be interesting to see if my lifelong hobby is still providing a good ratio of excitement per dollar.

To The Haul!

The Haul – March 27th, 2013

Again, I’m trending behind in my books, even despite a week off work.  Damn, I need another distraction.  Quick!  Look over here!!!

The Boy and his puppies (nevermind the foot in the corner...)
The Boy and his puppies (never mind the foot in the corner…)

I was on vacation last week, which has provided opportunities to do all the things that a 30 year-old married man with two children wants to do — go to Bed, Bath, and Beyond, Buy Buy Baby, Michael’s — you know, all the cool, hip places.  God, I depress myself to no end.

Anyway, I found this gem over at Michael’s while hunting in the party favor aisle (a personal favorite place to find cheap garbage).

photo 3

Great!  We like Green Lantern in the house, we like coloring things in the house — perfect match!  Let’s take a look at the provided markers…ARE YOU SERIOUS?  NO GREEN???

On an even more ridiculous note, baseball season is finally here and the Amazin’ Mets have taken the first 2 of 3 games, once again starting their season off on an exciting note which will eventually turn horribly flat.  As for my fantasy team, Ruins of Shea:

RoS Standings

What a hot mess.

To The Haul!

The Haul – March 13th, 2013


That’s me!  Waiting for my fantasy league assignment…

Continue reading The Haul – March 13th, 2013

The Haul – February 13th, 2013


I’ve never been a huge fan of the holiday, as it seemingly forces you to profess love for people — I think that should just happen naturally and not while held at proverbial gunpoint by chalky candy hearts — but, hey, it’s an important holiday for most.  We spend our Valentine’s the same way we spend every other day — trying to stay asleep while the kids scream and jump in the bed, negotiating the small toys scattered throughout the house, and breathing a very small sigh of relief once they’re both asleep.  The life of married with children isn’t a glamorous one, but despite my complaints, it does happen to be a great one.

A quick word of concern before the usual stuff.  Each night before bedtime, The Boy and I read a story.  A few nights ago, for the first time, he picked out a story that I used to have when I was young — Love You Forever.  I’m sure that most of you know this one, but I haven’t looked at it since I was a little kid and now, seeing it as an adult,


If my mother, while “all the lights were out in my house”, got a ladder, broke into my house through my bedroom window, crawled across the floor, picked me up out of bed, and rocked me in her arms, I would be on the phone with the mental institution so fast she wouldn’t have time to recite her creepy four line poem.  And then I would call my doctor to find out how the hell I was able to sleep through all of that.

This is worse than ANY horror movie I've ever watched.
This is worse than ANY horror movie I’ve ever watched.

We’re still on a big superhero kick at home, much to my obvious thrill.  He’s even double-Supermanning it these days!

The new school dress code - in my fantasy world.
The new school dress code – in my fantasy world.

At this week’s trip to the comic store, The Boy went with me (basically to get him out of his mother’s hair for a little bit).  As we were checking out — with a Spongebob comic in tow — he started looking through the glass display cabinet under the register, which was filled with random loose action figures.  Iron Man, Wolverine, lots of different characters.  Well, no surprise that my flesh and blood NEEDS to have one.  So, of all the choices, who does he pick?

Jean Grey for the win!
Jean Grey for the win!

At least she’s an X-Man and he’s a happy kid, huh?

This week also marked the arrival of a commissioned piece of art that I had done for Emma’s room by the excellently talented Hanie Mohd.  Since The Boy was essentially named after two characters from one of my favorite TV shows, I figured I’d carry on my secretive naming with The Girl and pick names from the X-Men.  So, here is the final product from my request — Emma Frost and Rachel Summers doing something fun.  I think it came out ridiculously awesome.


The little lady is still making every attempt to plow through and over anything in her way as she rapidly makes a case for the most self-injurious baby around.  Bedtime is becoming a new joy too; she does not want to fall asleep without at least a good 45 minutes of testing the volume of her voice and production of her tears.  Here’s the monitor from a few nights ago after an hour:


Let me get a closer view for you…

IMG_1931Yeah, that’s her passed out against the bars of her crib after screaming at the top of her lungs for an hour.  Persistent little thing, she is…

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The Haul – January 16th and 23rd, 2013

Forced into Marveldom by his father

Let’s start off this post with an adorable picture of The Boy.  Yes!  Relish in his cuteness!  Soak in that Spider-Man pajama suit!  Be distracted that I am behind two weeks!!!

The Jacob Trail: You may not die of dysentery, but you will have to memorize pony names
The Jacob Trail: You may not die of dysentery, but you will have to memorize pony names.

So, the first picture is obvious evidence that I’ve so far successfully brainwashed Jacob into becoming my comic protegee.  The Boy has really taken to his new role and is slowly amassing his own (and stealing my) superhero toys.  It’s even started to infuse into his reading habits.  Every night before bedtime, we read two stories — the routine since he was an infant.  Now that he’s picking out the stories himself, it’s been a pretty consistent 50% superheroics rate.  We’ve been into this one, an anthology book with about 10 or so different stories:

5 Minute Marvel StoriesWhich includes such great visuals for young minds, such as this one:

IMG_1793Looks like a great story, huh?  Classic Avengers (including, as Jacob calls him, the Huk) beating up on the obnoxious Namor, which in about 2 pages leads to the dramatic reveal of the frozen Captain America.  My kid?  Focusing on this panel:

IMG_1795To which my genius kid asks, “Daddy, where is that guy’s pants?”  I mean, if a 3 year old is questioning the validity of Namor’s fashion decisions, who am I to argue?

Oh, and so as not to show my obvious Marvel bias, he’s also learning about Batman and his rogue gallery, such as The Cat Lady (Catwoman), Two-Man (Two Face), and Crocodile (Killer Croc).  He’s getting there — give him another week.

The Joker and the Slightly Misnamed Gang "At A Picnic"
The Joker and the Slightly Misnamed Gang “At A Picnic”

Since it seems I’m blabbing a bit here, so I might as well go off on an even crazier tangent.  I need to vent on something that drives me absolutely crazy.  There’s no good place for me to do this but here, so if you don’t want to read the ramblings of a rabid lunatic, you can just skip ahead to the jump.

Plastic.  Clothing.  Tags.

Yes, those pieces of thin plastic that hold tags onto your clothing.  I don’t know if they have a better name — I really don’t care if they do.  All I know is that they are ALL OVER MY FREAKING HOUSE.  The floors, the couch, the table, floating weightless through the air — they are EVERYWHERE!!!  I haven’t bought new clothes in about a year, so I am EXTREMELY confident that they are not from me.  Dawn, the primary buyer of new clothes, and the kids, the primary wearer of said clothes, are my obvious archenemies.  Without fail, I’ll come across at least one piece a day.  I don’t think that there are even that many new clothes around to support this many tags!  There must be some, I don’t know, plastic clothing tag gremlin or something roaming the house in the dead of night, giggling and grinning while he (or she, hate to be gremlin-ist) plants them like crappy Afikomen at Passover (though both matzah and plastic have a similar flavor).

The evidence:

The Nightstand
The Nightstand
The Kitchen Mat
The Kitchen Mat
The Changing Table
The Changing Table


To The Haul!

The Haul – January 9th, 2013

It continues to be a bit embarrassing releasing a post with a date from a week and a half ago, but things have been busy.  In the next post, which will be about this week’s books, I’ll give you some more stuff, but for sake of time, let’s just get right to it.

Oh, but I’ll give you this one thing:

309524_4872665891108_1632451229_nShe is about a half a second away from walking now.  Only 7 months.  The baby gates went back up today, which now means I have to play doorman for both Jacob and the dog 24/7.

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The Haul – December 19th and 26th, 2012


Courtesy of (AKA stolen from) Paul Layzell

MERRY CHRISTMAS, EVERYONE!!!  If Santa was really that cool, maybe even I’d get a tree?

We’re still recovering from holiday-time toy overload.  Holy Good God, the house is bursting with new toys (admittedly, not just for the kids — I got the Loki Break Out Lego set, amongst other comic related joys).  I always get a little frustrated, though, because with all the new stuff, all those old toys that we spend so much money on tend to get forgotten.  Thankfully though, The Boy is still very much into his ponies.

Lining up for the "gala", he says...
Lining up for the “gala”, he says…

On the work front, things have been very busy this past week.  Six months of straight service with no vacation time may have been a bad decision in retrospect.  I had to add two photos to my desk to cheer me up on those down days…

God knows I needed that positive life affirmation...
God knows I needed that positive life affirmation…

To The Haul!

The Haul – November 21st

DON’T CALL IT A COMEBACK!  I’ve been here for years!   Well, actually much less than a year total, but let’s not split hairs…

Look who’s still here!  Yes, by no demand whatsoever, The Weekly Haul is determined to survive!  So, since I know that you’re all on the edge of your seats and don’t have time for cute pictures of my kids:

or Thanksgiving:

or what I’ve been up to in the break:

let’s get right to it!

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The Catchup Haul – Ultimate Comics and Marvel

So, it’s definitely getting harder and harder to keep up with the weekly books.  I’ll have more witty things to say and cute pictures to post next time, but let’s just get right into this thing.

To The Haul!