You’ve Been Dropped!

In these harsh economic times, and in the face of rising cover prices, sometimes you have to take a hard look at your pull list and make some hard choices.

Or sometimes some not so hard choices.

This week I dropped three books from my pull list. I haven’t had a bloodletting like that in a long time. There are individual reasons why I cut each book, but there are also a couple of general reasons. The first reason is purely economic. I cut two books before I even made my pulls and then one afterwards. Why did the third book get cut? Well, I looked at my list and it had ballooned to 21 books. That’s a lot of books. It’s easier to justify picking up a borderline book when you only have a handful of books in a given week, but when you have a monstrous week like I have this week you start to look for ways to get the size of that list down. The second reason has to do with generally not wanting to have to slog through a whole passel of mediocre books on a Wednesday. There’s nothing worse than getting beaten down by six or seven just purely average comics in one sitting. That’s almost worse than reading just flat-out bad comics. It’s weeks like those that make me annoyed with comic books.

I now present the three books I dropped this week, as personified by the last issue of each that I purchased:

Astonishing X-Men: Ghost Boxes

There was a time not long ago that I had a rule about dropping mini-series. If I started with it, I always stuck through to the end. And I slogged through some horrid ones in my time. I think all those bad minis finally got to me and I started to wonder why I was putting my sanity and my wallet through such pain for some arbitrary rule? No more.

The fact that I dropped this two-part mini-series after the first issue should tell you how much I just did not enjoy the first issue. At all.

Well that’s not true, I enjoyed part of it a little bit. The part that I did I enjoy was looking at the Alan Davis art, which was really the only reason I bought it in the first place. Of course, that’s not saying much because if my memory serves me correctly the main story that Davis drew was like five pages long. And I couldn’t tell you what happened in it. I mean, literally I remember nothing. If someone held a gun to my head right now and told me they were going to pull the trigger unless I described one thing that happened in that issue we’d be down an iFanboy.

And if that wasn’t enough to want to drop the book this second issue doesn’t even have any Alan Davis art. This drop was an easy decision.


Booster Gold

This one was tough.

It’s the only regular series on the list which means I’ve invested a year and four months of my time (there were two extra issues — a 0 and a 1,000,000) into the book.

Unfortunately, I just had to face the fact that my interest in this particular book had been on the decline for a while. There had been moments of absolute brilliance from writers Jeff Katz and Geoff Johns in the first year, but by the end of their run I was starting to think that perhaps twelve issues was enough for Booster Gold. But then Chuck Dixon came on for a two part arc involving old school Batman action so I had to stay on for that. And then one of my favorite writers, Rick Remender, came on to do another two part arc so I had to stay on for that.

So when I saw the newest issue on the pull list and realized that I had been on this book for the last four months for reasons other than the main character and I coupled that with the fact that the new writer, Dan Jurgens, just doesn’t do a lot for me these days from a pure writing stand point… well, I knew it was time to move on.


X-Men and Spider-Man

This was not only an impulse purchase but an impulse drop.

When I originally made my pull list this week this book was on it, and it stayed for about ten hours. And then I found myself perusing my pull list, thinking about what I was really looking forward to reading and the last book on the list was this one. When my eyes came to a rest on the cover I cocked an eyebrow and recalled that I just wasn’t overly thrilled with the first issue. It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t very good either. It just… was.

The reason I impulsively picked this up in the first place was that I love the original X-Men and I love it when the X-Men team up with other heroes who aren’t also X-Men. The problem with this book for me was that from a writing and an art standpoint, it wasn’t nearly as good as Ultimate Spider-Man and it wasn’t nearly as good as X-Men: First Class. So at the end of the day there was nothing I found overly compelling about it. Why spend time with average when I already have exemplary?

The final nail in the coffin was that the second issue jumps forward in time and it’s no longer the original X-Men teaming up with Spider-Man, so there goes about 80% of the reason I picked up issue one.


And there you have it. The three books I’ve dropped this week and the reasoning behind why. It’s nothing personal, I still want to be friends with the books, there are just other books out there that I want to see naked now.

One thing’s for sure, I really need to permanently retire the idea that I stick with mini-series. And yet sometimes I find myself still saying/thinking it. It’s kind of like how it took me about three years after the graduation ceremony to stop telling people that I had “just” graduated from college.



  1. Hearing you say this was an amazing thing:

    "I think all those bad minis finally got to me and I started to wonder why I was putting my sanity and my wallet through such pain for some arbitrary rule?  No more."

  2. I think I am close to done with minis not associated with an event from now on. Gonna stick to the regular ongoing series and save some cash. If I catch wind of a mini that’s been considered a great read by many people I’ll grab it in trade (looking at you X-Men: Magneto Testament; Silver Surfer: Requiem & In Thy Name). I think I am pretty much done with oneshots as well. Then again, I do have several minis in this weeks pull.


    I wanted to drop Ghost Boxes because of the price and the fact that the actual story is only like 16-18 pages and the rest was director’s cut like crap at the end. No thanks. . .. and yet I’m still getting #2.

  3. i too am considering dropping booster gold. i loved johns’ run, thought the batman stories were pretty cool, but was confused and let down by remender’s issues. i expect jurgen’s run to be passable, though would love to be surprised. i wouldn’t even bother picking it up anymore but isn’t this series getting cancelled pretty soon? if there’s only a few issues left before the run is complete i may as well finish it off.

    of the rest of the books i read teen titans is probably the only one with its head on the chopping block. i don’t remember the last time i had a read a good issue of that book, but i am drawn into the soap opera aspect of it.

  4. I was trying to make a rule about no more miniseries in general and just buying them as trades…but people kept putting out stuff I wanted to read *now* and not wait for. Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane is one example, Adam: Legend of the Blue Marvel is another. I held my ground on X-Men: Worlds Apart, though, and Magneto: Testament.

    Good for you for dropping books that weren’t wowing you, though. My current chopping block is thus: Astonshing X-Men, X-Factor, X-Force, Deadpool, Punisher War Journal (again), and very likely She-Hulk. All of these will…probably be dropped either after the current arc is done or after the next issue. I enjoy these books, but I don’t know that I enjoy them enough anymore to justify $2.99 every month. 



  5. @Diabhol – Just to help you out with your chopping block. The art is X-Force 11 returns it to what is was like in issues 1-6, She-Hulk’s final issue is #38, so in three issues. X-Factor’s art finally went back to normal, Astonishing just doesn’t feel right without Casaday, and PWJ has been doomed to be a tie-in book to every Marvel event (CW, Initiative, WWH, SI, and now Dark Reign). Maybe that helps……

  6. I grab my books through DCBS right now, and just had them drop Dark Avengers #1 from my pull.  Can’t justify hopping onto an ongoing @$3.99.  Really torn between my $3.99 32pg boycott and my 40odd New Avengers backissues though.  Will see what the price is after issue #50… Sigh.

  7. Thar be rumblins in the comics world.

  8. I dropped minis as well within the last few weeks: War Heroes, No Hero and Crossed.  Plan on dropping Avengers: Initiative after this arc is over.  I have had my fill of Avengers books and would rather spend my money on Secret Warriors when it comes out.  Plus I moved to trades with Buffy, Fables and Ex Machina. 

    Mostly when I drop a book its because I am just not enjoying it anymore, not so much the economy or my lack of funds.  Oh what is this world becoming?!?

  9. Wow Conor–Three good drops I’d say.

  10. @drake – I’m thinking about switching to trades for Buffy as well.  Still deciding.  

  11. @Paul-Mostly its my wife.  She only reads Buffy, Doctor Who, and the Anita Blake adaptations.  But then she couldn’t handle the monthly wait on Buffy, so she just told me to let her know when I collected an entire arc so she can read it all.  Plus I heard it reads quite well in trade format.

  12. As I recall, it’s not that you couldn’t say today what happened in Ghost Boxes; it’s that you couldn’t say what happened in Ghost Boxes while you were looking directly at Ghost Boxes. Luckily, the last half of the book helpfully printed the script for what you just read, in lieu of any kind of comic book.

    Imagine going to see a movie, only to learn that the second half of the movie was just the first half again but without the effects finished. And paying more to see it.

    I was just taking a look at my pull list last night when it occurred to me that I hadn’t even checked how many $3.99 books I had. Turns out to be about half of them. Not everybody’s gettin’ pulled after all. Greed’s loss is your gain, I Kill Giants!

  13. I, too, felt it necassary to drop X-Men/Spider-Man. I’m sticking with Ghost Boxes, though. I enjoy the "What If" short story quality, and the script full script is a plus for me as a writer. 

    @Theoran – Punisher War Journal has been so much more than that (though few people seem to realize it). The series doesn’t tie into the events as much as it allows the events to help define the character’s place in the Marvel Universe. Look at the "Secret Invasion" arc. The entire invasion was just the backdrop for the story, which had NOTHING to do with Secret Invasion. World War Hulk was used as a plot point in which we, the readers, get a good look at the part of Frank Castle that is a hero, not just a killer. With most series, the event tie-ins are meant to help the event. With this one, the events help the series (which could get along quite well without them).

    Did you miss the "Jigsaw" arc? Man, that was six consecutive issues of pure brilliance in the violent Punisher fashion, no tie-in material.

  14. I used to have two hard, fast rules – 1. Never drop a mini; 2. Never drop a Vertigo title. Well, in recent weeks, I’ve done both, and I’ve got to say, I’m not that sorry.

    One thing kind of related to this is cancelled titles and how some shops don’t order the final issues. My current shop isn’t carrying  the final issues of Noble Causes, which is frustrating. Guess shops are allowed to drop titles, too.

  15. I dropped Wonder Woman starting this month,  very close on Teen Titans as well.  Was going to drop it before the storyline that just finished, but that dang "Wonder Dog" incident has me intrigued.   Moon Knight is done as soon as the Thunderbolts storyline is over with.  Finch’s art is what brought me in, and now its been like 18 issues since he left and Benson’s writing hasn’t done it for me.  

  16. Good choices to drop….now i wonder about Connor’s pull list!

  17. I plan to stay on Booster Gold out of 52, Johns/Katz nostalgia.  I’ll give Jurgens one arc to keep me on board.  

  18. Bully! *thumbs up*

  19. @webhead: I can’t justify 3 avengers titles per month, I’m thinking either Might or Dark is going to have to go, or BMB could do us all the favor and just end it on his own.

  20. Sometimes I like the idea of a book better than the book itself. Although I am not a regular Booster Gold reader, I like the idea that there is a character who travels through time cleaning up the messes. The problem with that, like all gimmicks, is that it induces reader fatigue.

  21. that rule of yours is nothing like i have ever heard. i am far too parsimonious for that.

  22. Is it really fair to drop a 2 issue mini? 🙂

    I’ve mainly dropped the books I have loved since coming back to comics. Ultimate Spider-Man, Action Comics, New Avengers, and anything else Bendis is writing right now.

    JSA might be the next to go since Johns will be leaving shortly.

  23. JLA and Teen Titans recently got the axe for me. In this case when I was pulling them off the shelves I just decided to put them back. No debating, no financial weighing; just boredom. To add insult to injury, I then went to home and piled up the last several months worth of both books and sold them of to half priced books. I think I got, like, 2 bucks for the 10 or so issues, which made me sad. But, hey, that’s two dollars more than I would ahve if I left them in my closet!

  24. I was planning on dropping several titles, but now it seems many of my favorites are being canceled like Blue Beetle, Nightwing, etc, so now I’m keeping on to fill the void, but it never ever gets fills up, does it? DOES IT?!

  25. Funny story – I almost accidentally bought BOOSTER GOLD today.  I was on autopilot in the store.  Lucily I always match the number of books in my hand to the number on my pull list.  Usually I’m short a book or two because I missed something but this time I was +1 and it took me a few minutes to figure out why.  I had to go to the back issue bin and spread my books out.  As soon as I saw BOOSTER GOLD I laughed.

    jjcolin – You can see my pull list here.

  26. @Conor-haha, I turn my brain off when I am picking books off the shelf.  Then I do what you do, count the books and compare it to my pull list number before I go pay.  I heart the iFanboy pull list 🙂

  27. I might move to trades on ‘Daredevil.’  I still like the book but there’s not a lot of urgency to it, and I don’t know anybody else who’s so into it I’ll feel compelled to discuss.  Buffy reads great in trade — and I love the packaging of them and how quickly they come out — but I know enough people who follow the book monthly that I wouldn’t want to miss out on potential conversations.  (I so, however, plan to skip the Jeph Loeb-written one-shot, thanks). 

    Otherwise, I haven’t dropped anything lately and am pretty happy with the size of my pull list.  I am sticking with X-Men/Spider-Man, because I enjoy Christos Gage’s writing + the art — but I did find the presence of Jean & Gwen to be a big part of the first issue’s appeal.  So jumping into a period of history I care less about (black suited Spidey + Mohawk Storm) isn’t a real selling point.

  28. I tend to drop things if I place them at the bottom of my stack and wind up thinking that was the right place for them after reading.

    House of Mystery is on the chopping block if this week’s issue isn’t more memorable than the last few have been. 

    I dropped Skaar after the last issue when I realized I still hadn’t really gotten interested in any of the cast of characters enough to even remember their names between issues.

  29. Dropping books is liberating. I’m down to under $50 a month on comics

  30. I never read any of the comics that you dropped so I guess I agree with you. 

    I am about sick of mini series myself.  Once Batman Cacophony and Superman & Batman versus Vampires & Werewolves is over, it’s a wrap.  I’m making it my New Year’s Resolution to stick with regular series and save money.  I will have to stop buying so many Blu Rays and stick with DVDs too, ouch!!!

  31. Thanks for this article Conor. It made me realize that my pull list had grown and grown until it was a giant monster destroying my wallet as if it was Toyko. I dropped 16 books as a result. I thank yo, my wallet thanks you and the nice stack of trades i’ll be able to afford will also thank you.

  32. @conor – Man, be glad you dropped Booster. Jurgens missed the mark badly.

    I’m sad about it. It has been consistently fun even after the depart of Johns, but now I feel like it’s not going to last very long. 

  33. You dropped my book!!! No!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I would love to see a list of all the books on your pull list…I can promise you there is another one you can pick…or I can pick one for you!!!

    Seriously I am still loving Booster, and considering the man who created the character is now writing and drawing the book, I can only imagine it getting even better!!! 

  34. Now that I pirate everything off the net* and buy trades of the good stuf. I never have to drop anything.

     but i ttoally would have droped all three of those books too!

    *except beloved titles in danger of cancellation i buy 3 copies each of those!

  35. I have been dropping the monthly issues and moving more and more to trades. I like trades cause I can buy them when I have the money but with issues I feel that I commited if I have money or not.

  36. @Melongum: So your the reason why Amazing Spider-Girl stay alive! 🙂

  37. It’s the advertisers – you can put adverts directed at girls.

    She-hulk sounds too risky. If it was Hulk-Girl it would stay.

    Bat-girl sounds negative – a crazy girl. 

  38. Dropping can be hard… but since I add more than I drop, a necessity.

    Spirit, Casanova, Boys are my latest casualities.  

  39. Lately I’ve just been getting sick of the Avengers books. Whenever a major crossover occurs(which is every four month or so it seems), the books stop being about the Avengers. I have no interest in this Secret Warriors book, Slott is off A:TI. When I finally hit the shop today I think I’ll be cutting New, Mighty, and A:TI from my list. Probably JSA, too, with Johns leaving. Back to how I started, X-books only.

  40. The majority of the time I drop a book, it’s because of a new creative team whose work I’m not into.  I also agree with the indifference factor.  By dropping all the books that were okay, but not good or great, my reading experience is more satisfying, and my perspective on comics is better.  Not only is this good for saving me money, I am also open to checking out a new book I’m wondering about.  If I come away underimpressed, no harm no foul.  Oh, and the Ghost Boxes bait-and-switch is bullshit.  I’m an Ellis fan of the worst kind, but that’s ridiculous.

  41. @Dragonflye  I don’t think the ‘Ghost Boxes’ debacle was Ellis’s fault; it’s an intriguing project that was poorly packaged and advertised.  ("Poorly" from the point of view of the consumer, not Marvel.  ‘Wanna see Ellis do some truly creeptastic shit he couldn’t get away with in an in-continuity story & then read the scripts that show how he did it" has an audience — it’s just not necessarily the same audience that says ‘Hey, I want to see Alan Davis draw an X-Men book’.)

  42. And I meant to say. . .it’s certainly a SMALLER audience. 

  43. I’m dropping books since the import prices have now gone up in England. Top of my sh*t list are Wolverine Origins (I know!) and X-Men Legacy plus, like Conor, all those minis that were so casually appealing when i returned to comics, but now just bore me.

    Young X-Men and X-Force have also been given notice. It was much easier when I was a kid and there was only one X-Men book. Happy times! 

  44. @Theoran

    My problem with X-Force is that I’m not sure I care about the story. The concept of the book is cool, but I don’t know that it’s worth my time.

    If She-Hulk’s getting cancelled, then I’ll hang on ’til the end. Thanks. 🙂

    With X-Factor, the problem (again) is the story. I’ve realized that the popular opinion on iFanboy is correct and that X-Factor never recovered from Messiah Complex. I’m getting tired of waiting for Layla Miller to come back (and I didn’t realize how important she was to the book until she was out of it).

    Astonishing doesn’t feel right without Joss Whedon, honestly. Worse, it feels unnecessary. I can see any character in Astonishing (except Armor) in some other book, so it doesn’t seem like Astonishing matters anymore.

       I don’t mind tie-ins when they’re good. Unfortunately, the PWJ SI tie-in was pretty lackluster. However, I’d forgotten about Dark Reign, so that may keep me on the book. On the other hand, I’m not the biggest Frank Castle fan, so it’s questionable whether or not it’s worth paying for. I’ll mull this over.

    thanks for the info 🙂