While comic book fans descended on New York City for NYCC this past weekend, we had our own little comic show here in northern Virginia. The Shoff Show comes around every few months, and I’ve been going to it fairly often lately — I’m a sucker for the bargain bins. There is one dealer who brings dozens of long boxes with comics priced from 75 cents to five bucks. This is where I spend most of my time (and money) — there is treasure to be found, you just need to dig for it!
My quest for Silver Age comics always yields some interesting results…
While sifting through some boxes, I chatted with a couple of dealers about the show’s attendance and how it was surprisingly good, even though Baltimore Comic Con was last weekend, and AwesomeCon wasn’t too long ago. Despite that optimism, they were acutely aware that there are hardly any young comic buyers — most of their customers are old dudes like me. They commented that Millenials have never been exposed to comic books in their paper format, and the future of the comic industry is bleak at best. I guess that makes sense, but I hate to think it’s true. I’m not deeply involved in the comic scene, but I would imagine that this is a common lament among collectors and sellers. Is there a future for comic book collecting?
It’s true that kids these days are nowhere near as attached to “stuff” as their parents. My kids and their friends collect and trade Pokemon cards, but that’s about it. They use their electronic devices to read books, play games, watch movies, and communicate with one another. If there’s one thing they will look back on as adults, it will be the time they spent with their iPads. sigh.
Collecting is as strong as ever in kids, but the things they collect are digital items found in video game loot crates — the physical aspect doesn’t seem to be necessary. What do you think, will these kids eventually grow up to appreciate and collect physical objects, or will they be surrounded by nothing but piles of obsolete electronic devices?
Do your kids have an interest in reading and collecting physical copies of comic books? Add your thoughts in a comment below.