Goodbye, And Thanks For All The Comics

This is it. This is my last regular column. Perhaps I will toss out a top five at some point or get fired up enough about an announcement to write a a quick missive but it won’t be a regular feature. I am heading back to school and with an intensive program of study ahead of me, I need to free up some energy and time.

First of all, thanks to Ron, Conor, and Josh for giving me a chance to write on this website. iFanboy’s success is a direct reflection of their hard work and strong character.  I also want to thank all of you for making this experience as much fun as it has been. Creating and expressing ideas is fun in its own right but it is a thousand times better when there are others paying attention to what you are creating.

In parting, I want to break down just about everything I have written into a simple guide.  That way when you get into a jam and you need to know what I would do, you have something to roll with.

Don’t Worry So Much About What Other People Think

The best arbiter of your enjoyment is yourself. Read reviews to find new books you might enjoy or to gain insight into the books you do read. Just do not look to them for permission to enjoy yourself. It’s your money, your time, and your fun. Take control of it.

Don’t Get Hung Up On Newness

There are plenty of old books out there worth your time and money. Newness fades but quality stays forever. The rush to keep up with what everyone is reading is a troubling siren’s call. You end up owning a bunch of books where you do not care about what is actually behind cover. Great creative content does not have an expiration date.

Go To Conventions

Once you get there, meet as many people as you can. Go find the creators you enjoy and tell them how much you enjoy their work.  There is no machine at the publishers that pumps out books for you to read. Comics are made by people who would love to know that fans are enjoying their work. Go find the comic fans that you see eye to eye with. Whenever the endless rumors and speculation about comics starts to drag me down, I think about the people involved in the community and it raises my spirits a bit. Going to cons will make you a deeper and more well rounded fan.

Don’t Read Your Books So Fast

Seriously, it isn’t a race. Take a second and enjoy that art. You paid for it you might as well linger with it. Don’t take the consumer label so literally.

When In Doubt Go With Weird

Comic books are a medium where the weird can thrive. Crazy ideas get a chance to take hold and grow because they are relatively cheap to make.  A single creator with a crazy idea can create his or her own comic book without any gatekeeper’s permission.  When you are looking a stack of books and considering how to spend your money, consider the weird and wild.  In comics, we tend to use the words “realistic” and “relevant” interchangeably.  The weirdest of books can touch you emotionally, just as the most realistic of stories. There is a place for both, but only one of them is going to have talking apes. It’s your call.

As long as you stick to those directives, you are all going to be fine.  Good luck and remember not to settle for mediocre entertainment.


Tom Katers will miss you most of all.




  2. Great column. Hopefully you’ll only be gone about the same length of time as the average dead comic book character.

  3. Thank you, Tom. You will be missed and I hope you won’t be a stranger!

  4. ah man that’s a bummer. I’ve always enjoyed your articles and you will be missed.

    Best of luck in your studies! Be sure to get an extra cool trapper keeper, and lunchbox or else you’re screwed!

  5. So long, Tom, and thanks for all the fish.

  6. Take Care, Tom. Mustaches help ease the back to school transitions.

  7. Oh!

    Well. Goodbye, apparently!

    You always helped end my week on a high note. Hopefully, this frees up some Twitter time for you.

  8. Thanks for all the great writing you’ve contributed.
    Look forward to seeing you again.

  9. Tom, I’m usually a dick and like to stir the pot on the comments thread, but I’ll miss you man. You are one of my inspirations to write my own comics blog and your potential last entry was one of the best I’ve ever read. Good luck in school and I wish you all the best.

  10. Later, Katers

    Will have to get my fix through Tom vs. Aquaman! (I’ve missed the last few eps, i need to catch up)

    Any maybe on a POTW podcast here and there??? *hint hint*

  11. Thanks Tom! With Apologies…I’m gonna miss your unique brand of humor.

    And I love that this was tagged with “Apes”, since we all know that the make any story more popular.

  12. Thanks for all the great articles, Tom. Go forth and study up all the knowledge there is. I know you can do it. Best of luck.

  13. Thanks for everything, Tom. I hope to see you back on here soon. And good luck in school.

  14. So long and thanks Tom! You’ve put out some of my favourite columns on the site. Going to miss your unique style.

  15. Thanks Tom, and good luck in school!

  16. Thanks for the great articles and good luck Tom!

  17. Thanks for all of the columns, Tom! Always among my very favorite features on this site. I hope to someday enjoy a beer with you while discussing just how wonderfully insane early sixties Superboy comics are.

  18. So long, Tom, and best of luck at school! You’ll be sorely missed.

  19. Enjoy your new venture and good luck! Your great sense of humor will be missed. Seeya!

  20. I would love to be in a class with you

  21. I’ll miss your column Tom. As much as you recommend thanking our creators I think it’s equally important to thank the people who make comics exciting and fun. Thanks!

  22. Sniff… Will we still have Tom vs Aquaman?

  23. Thanks bringing alot of fun to my comics experience.

  24. Tom, what are you going to study? My guess is PhD in Accounting… Good luck in any case!

  25. Farewell Mr. Katers and good luck

  26. Thanks, Tom! Your column has been the highlight of my Friday afternoons. I’ll miss your insight and genuine love of comics. Best of luck at school!!

  27. Later Tom. I never did get my Katers Haters shirt. You brought a different perspective to things around here and I appreciated that, even if I didn’t always get what you were going on about. Bummer day for IFanboy.

  28. We’ll miss you Tom. I always looked forward to your columns every week, they never failed to be extremely entertaining. I wish the best of luck in your new program at school!

  29. JeffR (@JeffRReid) says:

    Best wishes, Tom. Thanks for all the writings. Here’s hoping you’re still up for the occasional Josh replacement. 🙂

  30. Now I am sad.

    Good luck Tom. Loved your articles and it doesn’t get funnier than the Pick of The Week Podcast where skewered Sentry: Fallen Sun.

  31. Good Luck in school Tom. Thanks for all the great writing and entertainment of the various Tom versus Podcasts.

  32. Thank you, Tom. Wish you the best of luck with your future plans.

  33. Bye Tom! We’ll miss you!!

  34. You can’t keep quitting things, Tom. I will not follow you wherever you anymore!

    I wont.

  35. Good luck Tom.

  36. Thanks for all the great columns, Tom! Congrats and good luck with school!

  37. I hope you enjoy you return to school. Good luck.

  38. Love your columns and podcasts. Good luck to you Tom!

  39. Check in every now and then Tom we could use your take on the state of comicdom.
    Good Luck

  40. Good job dude. I’ll still bug you on occasion to pop on a Word Balloon ep.

  41. You were the best, Tom. Please, please still fill in on the occasional POTW. Good luck in school!

  42. We’ll miss ya here Tom. safe travels.

  43. Wow, sad news.

    Best of luck for the futue.

  44. …and for the future as well.

  45. Tom Vs. Education Podcast, please!??

    Thanks, Tom!

  46. Thanks for writing such fun stuff for us, Tom! I’ve also returned to school and it’s been way more fun than I could have hoped; hopefully you have a similarly enjoyable time. Good luck to you and I’ll be keeping my eyes peeled for whatever you decide to share with us down the line!

  47. Good Luck bro! See ya when I read ya!

    …And in other news… Boy, am I glad to have a huge backlog of “TOM VS._____” ahead of me!

  48. Enjoyed reading your words of wisdom, Tom. Not to mention your awesome podcast. Hope that’s not going a casualty of school as well.

    What you say about not getting caught up in newness is very true. It kind of flies in the face of this great site and internet comic culture (heck, I know I too feel the need to be “caught up” so I can engage in the discussion or understand the podcast). But we really do need to slow down and enjoy things. Appreciate it all. After all, we read these books because we like them, right?

    Happy studying, Tom. Don’t be a stranger.

  49. Love your slow down comment. This is where I feel sorry for the IFanboys, who have to grind their books asap.

  50. Cheers and good luck. Your articles and podcasts have genuinely guided me towards enjoying comics more. It’s pretty darn cool.

  51. Words to live by. Thanks, Tom. It’s been a hoot.

  52. Thanks, Tom.

  53. Thank you, Tom. Good advice.

  54. Tom- when you left Around Comics I had to come to Ifanboy and now that you are leaving Ifanboy i have but one question?

    why do you hate me?

    if its about the dead cat thing, I thought the police and i cleared that misunderstanding up.

    sigh. best o luck with this “school” business…which i assume means that i’ll be following you to their website as well.

    the end?

  55. Fare the well good sir. Don’t be a stranger…

  56. Good luck in school Tom! I’ll miss the column and I hope we’ll still be getting some Tom vs. Aquaman!

  57. Good luck, Tom!

  58. We’ve never met, but I’ve always felt we share a similar approach when it comes to enjoying comics. Your unique voice and perspective will be missed around these parts. Best of luck, man. We’ll see you soon.

  59. Well this is a bummer. Your podcast has cheered me up through some rough times, and more importantly… taught me much about the bureaucratic inner workings of the JLA. Thanks and good luck to you.

  60. Noo! Who will replace Josh on the podcast now!? Who!?

    Seriously, your articles always a breath of fresh air to them. Not to say everyone else’s are bad; but your articles were always fun to read because you had views no one else had. It’ll be a shame not to see your articles on here anymore.

    Tom vs Aquaman is still go though right?

  61. Thanks for all the great articles, podcast cameos and laughs. Good luck with school Tom!

  62. Good Luck!!

  63. Thankfully, i still have about 250 “Tom vs.” to catch up on.

  64. Will miss ya Tom!

  65. Bye Tom, best of luck in school!

  66. “Don’t read your books so fast” is the best advice anyone could give on the comics internet.

  67. All the best to you, Tom! Thanks for the fun articles!

  68. Good advice, Tom – all the best with the studies, and the book.