Sunday, January 11, 2009
"Where can I get the President Obama meets Spider-Man comic book?"
People who know I collect comics have been asking me about getting copies of Amazing Spider-Man 583, the President Obama meets Spider-Man issue, coming out this Wednesday. The issue will have two covers - one of which features Obama (pictured on right) and one regular issue which does not (pictured below). All of the stores listed here will have gotten the regular issue as part of their normal ordering process and should have copies of that for sale. Marvel Comics made getting the Obama cover more difficult by first not telling retailers that it would be a special issue, and then offering the two covers and requiring retailers to buy a certain amount of the standard cover before they could order the Obama cover.
Marvel's website has a story on the comic - "Marvel Team-Up: Spidey/Obama Spider-Man editor Steve Wacker talks about the Webhead’s historic meeting with president-elect Barack Obama" By Matt Powell, 2009-01-09.
In my first real act of reporting, I've called some local stores to see if they'll have the Obama meets Spider-Man cover.
Laughing Ogre stores in Lansdowne and Fairfax (near Burke) are going to be your best bet. One of the clerks, Frazier says, "We're taking reservations, but will only have so many." Drew, the assistant manager, told me, "We're limiting people to two copies at first to make sure that everyone who wants a copy will get one. It was a special order thing so you had to be on top of it."
Alliance Comics is in Silver Spring (the store that used to be Geppi's back in the day) and Bowie, MD. Troy Allen of the Silver Spring store says "Marvel dropped this on people at the last minute and our orders had already been placed so we're hoping to have enough to get through the day and then they'll probably fast-track the reprint, if the Death of Captain America is any indication." Some of the people in the store are working on their own comic book as well, so check back for more details.
Big Monkey Comics has been reserving comics for people who have been calling in and hopes to have some to sell on the rack - Assistant Manager of the DC store James Rambo says, "We've been reserving copies and have gotten a ton of reserves. We're definitely going to have to get extra copies in."
Beyond Comics of Frederick and Gaithersburg, MD has enough to cover to their subscribers and a couple of extra copies because "Marvel didn't release news about what would be in the issue until the after the initial order, and then had a very short reorder period" during the week before Christmas.
Joel Pollack of Big Planet Comics's Bethesda store said, "Marvel, in their infinite wisdom, made it impossible for us to get a reasonable number of copies of the Obama cover. We will try to fulfill subs with the Obama cover, but cannot guarantee it. We will be getting the Obama cover second-prints, hopefully on January 21."
Fantom Comics in Tenleytown and Union Station will have just the regular Spider-man issue, which still has the story featuring Obama, and hopes to have enough copies for people to drop in and buy them.
Barbarian Book Store is in the Wheaton Triangle, but does not appear to have a functioning website and the telephone number I found on the web goes to a payphone.
Any other stores in the area who would like to let me know about their plans is welcome to write in: firstname.lastname@example.org
For those who like to collect this type of comic, Obama met Savage Dragon last fall and also appeared before the election in a biographical comic book. And as Randy noted last week, the free alternative comics Bash Magazine that's on the streets now has an Obama caricature by Halbert as the cover.