Everyone read comics as a kid.
X-Men #1 (1963)
Everyone, that is, except me.
I mean, I had a few comic books that I read occasionally. I have a copy of The Death of Superman hidden somewhere in the recesses of a closet in my parents’ house, alongside a couple other obscure comics that looked fun at the time. But, I never really got in to comics. I guess that’s why, now, with the rush of comic books being adapted to movies, I’ve had a reawakening of my childhood, and I’m wanting to see what the fuss is all about.
So, as I do when I pick up a new hobby, I am diving in, head-first into what I would consider to be my “favorite” team of comic characters — The X-Men. I’ve read that the best place to start is with Giant-Size X-Men #1, and X-Men #94, which is where everything picked up again after a hiatus in the mid 1970s. But why do that when I can start at the very beginning with X-Men #1, thanks to the power of my local library, I have access to the “Essential” volumes, which gives me all the artwork (sans-color) and all of the story line (including all the terrible writing of the 1960s-era issues).
As I write this, I am on X-Men #28, which is part of the 2nd volume of “Essentials”. At this rate, with well over 500 issues, spin-offs, and cross-overs, I think I should be completely caught up with everything by the time my own children are deciding to pick up comics for the first time in their 30s. I may yet decide to skip ahead a bit, because, to be completely honest, some of this writing in the early issues is just plain bad.
I did notice, however, that the writing got better as soon as Stan Lee stepped away from writing and took the editorial seat. Now, all I have to do is put up with corny nicknames that he gives himself in his cross-referencing notes (Scholastic Stan, Sentimental Smiley, Substantiating Stan, etc.). I appreciate the cross-references and reminders, but c’mon…
So, I guess we’ll see how this goes as I turn my brain to mush, following the fictitious adventures of a a bunch of mutant teens, their inability to say anything without an exclamation point, and the endless love triangles that Jean Grey finds herself in.