How Did You Start Reading Comics?

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Posted by No_name_here (1223 posts) - - Show Bio

 The hologram stuff on the cover certainly grabbed my attention, too.

Characters’ origins are a big part of the comics experience, obviously. However, I have to say that readers’ “origins” can be just as intriguing sometimes.  In my experience, nobody’s fandom ever started because “everybody else was into it.” It’s not like watching TV or listening to the radio or even reading novels. Like Warren Ellis said, you come in to comics alone. There’s usually some fun circumstances behind you diverting from the norm and entering this world. And it’s interesting to see how those circumstances change with the times.

In my case, I started reading when I was about six or seven. Or rather, that’s when I started following titles. Before that, I thumbed through the random SUPERMAN, BATMAN or SPIDER-MAN issue that came in my path. I was aware of a lot of the characters, however. They hadn’t quite dominated pop culture by the point, but they were certainly a fixture. BATMAN and BATMAN RETURNS were in theaters, SUPERMAN's I through IV were rerun on TV a lot and Spidey starred in more than a couple video-games (anybody remember that arcade beat ‘em up with Namor, Black Cat and Hawkeye?)  

My earliest comics memory concerns me flipping through a stack a family friend’s teenage son had lent me. That stack included FRANK MILLER’S RONIN, which I was definitely too young to be exposed to (and that probably explains a lot about me, today.) What really got me hooked, however, was the early 90s X-MEN cartoon on Fox Kids. It was a close enough to the current comics to pique my interest in seeing the “real story” behind all the cameos and nods in the show. That led me to get start officially “collecting” with ‘94’s PHALANX COVENANT storyline and I’ve been reading ever since.

So I put I turn the 20K spotlight on you maniacs in the Comic Vine community, now. What’s your origin story? What got you into reading comics in the first place? And what was the first one you read? Did it warp you the same way Frank Miller's RONIN probably warped me?

-- Tom Pinchuk is the writer of UNIMAGINABLE for Arcana Studios and HYBRID BASTARDS! for Archaia. Pre-order the HYBRID BASTARDS! hardcover now on Amazon.com.

#1 Posted by spiderguylll (620 posts) - - Show Bio

Saw the 90s X-Men and Spider-Man cartoons, Batman TAS too. Then one day I a Marvel Legends figure. I think it was Magneto and it came with X-Men #2 and I've been hooked since. I've got comic book knowledge beyond my years

#2 Edited by haydenclaireheroes (9011 posts) - - Show Bio

My dad at a young age collected comics. Mostly DC comics like Green Lanturn,Superman, and the Flash. When my Dad was 8 he was going to move and my grandfather had given all his comics to the neighbor kid for no money. So, when my Dad got married he got comics off ebay. I used to be interested on going on the computer with my Dad to play a computer game and when I waited he was on ebay and I saw him buy comics. When he saw I was curious about them he started reading some to me and my brother. My brother was never interested but, I liked the stories. My Dad would read Superman and Superboy to me mostly. (Even though I am a bigger Marvel fan than DC fan today) So, comics have always been with me because my dad always read it to me. I also use to watch all of the superhero shows like Batman the animated series,Static Shock, Teen Titans, X-men Evolution, and others. I also watched Smallville and that use to be and still is when we have the time a show we would watch together.

#3 Edited by jordama (4225 posts) - - Show Bio

I still remember the first comic that was mine, Ultimate X-Men 22 
 
I had scene a lot of my fathers old comics, he actually bough a box with a bunch of old issues. Plus I loved the 90;s animated series
#4 Posted by jlat89 (317 posts) - - Show Bio

Watched Batman TAS, first comic was Detective Comics, I forget the number

#5 Posted by 4Essence (152 posts) - - Show Bio

Well, I'd been watching the toons as a little kid back in the 90s. My older cousin was amage to the art, and made sure he spoke of the X-Men often. I then beheld a comic that would change my life. I wouldn't be able to recall until like 5 years later. It was Avengers #10 vol. 3 (98). My interest was peaked. I never bought the book, but loved the colors and characters and remembered them all the way to the comic book shop a few months later.
 
My first comic was at the age of 8 in 98. It was the "Greatest Battles of the Avengers" trade. I knew almost nothing about the continuity, but was so amazed at the characters. The rest is history. I
#6 Posted by daveydavey (359 posts) - - Show Bio

When I was 12 the Comic Shop was my parents set limit for the farthest I could go from home. I remember my first comic was a Marvel Comics presents from 1990 with Wolverine.
I also won a raffle for a box of comics at that store and that hooked me for life   :)

#7 Posted by Pizawle (1074 posts) - - Show Bio

Through other mediums. Cartoons like Batman, Spider-Man and X-Men were my favorites as a kid. Then, through film and videogames. Finally, when the Watchmen adaption was announced, I had decided I needed to read it. That was my first true interaction with comics. It blew my mind and was the only good part of an otherwise dull family trip. It completely expanded what I thought was possible from the medium despite still being a superhero book. 
 
However, it still did not get me into the comic shop.  I read Civil War and The Killing Joke a while after reading Watchmen but still I was not there. No, only a few months back did I finally begin to get into the medium as an enthusiast. I had wanted to for the longest time. I loved it all but for some reason I did not reach into the original medium these tales were coming from. I do not know why it took me so damn long and I regret missing out for so long but am delighted to finally be part of it as a fan and hopefully more some day.

#8 Posted by TheAntiVillain (74 posts) - - Show Bio

the animation from the 90's and early 00's but i really got into comics after i read "starman" and "deadpool and cable"

#9 Posted by nicknicholby (523 posts) - - Show Bio

The first comic I read was The Uncanny Xmen 247 when the Xmen battled the master mold and entered the siege perilous.  I'm old.

#10 Posted by Anderson: Agent of SMITH (234 posts) - - Show Bio

I remember reading one about some Daily Bugle worker with a bong or something, but I'm not convinced that was a legitimate issue of Spider-Man. That makes the very first I can recollect Superman #181, from the Loeb/McGuinness run (in this one, Supes and Bizarro switched places).  
However, this was when I was a little kid, so I wasn't seriously reading. Years later, my middle school had a bunch of graphic novels, so the comic that got me hooked was Ultimate X-Men Volume 2 (the Weapon X story arc). 
#11 Posted by Kid_Zombie (824 posts) - - Show Bio

I had a big family and my mother was a single parent, It was my brothers job to read me stories before i went to sleep. My brother was a very large comic book fan and would read me comics as bedtime stories. he has thosands of comics and i would sit in his room and try to read them ha ha but really was just looking at the pictures. Then Batman 89` came out. That helped and then the 90's x-men cartoon put the nail in the coffin and comics became my life. I don't remember the first comic i bought was, It would have just been added to my bros collection anyways ha ha But i think its was either batman or x-men...I'm leaning more towards x-men but i dont remember ha ha

#12 Edited by MTHarman (725 posts) - - Show Bio

When I was at a young age, between four and five, I had a rare mental disorder that caused me to be mute and lack social interactions with other people, even with my parents. Realizing that I had an interest in a small Captain America comic and the red man that was in it (who was the Red Skull, but I called him the red man), the counselors used mostly comics and comic characters to help me interact with my father and other people. Comics have been with me basically with me my entire life and was a tool for others to help me speak my first words to my father and to socially react at a late young age. 
#13 Posted by grifter78 (229 posts) - - Show Bio

See this article I did for my story:
 
 http://www.retrojunk.com/details_articles/4086/

#14 Edited by cmaprice (809 posts) - - Show Bio

I'd read Watchmen and at least part of The Big Fat Kill by the time I was 9. 
 
Whenever I get into a debate about media's role in youth violence, etc, I bring this, as well as other examples to the table. More often than not, the opposing position would say something to the effect that it's unacceptable I watched Nightmare on Elm Street at 6 or Schindler's list in theatres and that my mind couldn't have possibly been able to process violence and distinguish reality from fiction.
 
I once responded during a debate in college on censorship of media, "I saw my father drunkenly commit suicide a week before Christmas when I was 3. Life isn't rated PG and every kid develops at a different rate. If people were more concerned with explaining the world to kids and providing context instead of haphazardly and futilely shielding them from mediums meant to provide catharsis, perhaps parents wouldn't have to seek someone else to blame for their own piss-poor job at raising their kids."
 
Silence ensued. It was brilliant.

#15 Posted by Blindside002 (226 posts) - - Show Bio

First one I read was Uncanny X-men 507, then after playing Marvel Ultimate Alliance I went and read Deadpool then Ms. Marvel and thats what got me started reading comics, isn't much of a story since I've only been reading comics for about a year and a half.
#16 Posted by elayem98 (458 posts) - - Show Bio

The summer before last, I had just seen "The Dark Knight", and loved it.  Then at barnes and noble i saw "The Long Halloween"(One of my favorite books) by Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale.  But at the time i was thinking 'wow this is so dorky', but i ending up buying it and now i am a huge comic fan.    

#17 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

I watched the movies and cartoons and read a couple Batman comics here and there but I really started collecting during the current Teen Titans series when Tim Drake fought Jason Todd. I then started buying back issues and collecting from then on. I also collect a few other series. I actually decided to buy the first issue I read because I watched the tv show and wanted to learn more.

#18 Posted by DustinFun1704 (209 posts) - - Show Bio

My origin story takes place in the last three years. I have friends that were into comics and i LOVED batman!!!! When I heard that The Dark Knight was coming out I was so excited that i started reading about baman on-line, on every web-site that I could. Then about a year ago I picked up the wiff of a story arc that grabbed my attention and wouldn't let go for 4 months and it was all i could think about! It was Battle for the Cowl. I have all issues of that story arc and ever since then I'v read comic after comic after comic and I know more than anyone around here about them. To my family and friends I am now known as the comic book guy! =D  
#19 Posted by Mutant X (1543 posts) - - Show Bio

I always watched all the old 90's cartoons like Spider-Man, Batman, and Superman the animated series' as a kid. Then I got a little older, and still watched the movies that were coming out [keep in mind, I'm 15, so the movies started coming out during what I would consider my childhood]. Then, one day when I was 13, my cousin took me to my first comic store [he was just starting to get into comics as well], I bought a couple of 25 cent comic books and I've been a comic junkie ever since.

#20 Posted by Darkly Dreaming (12 posts) - - Show Bio

When I was a kid I was obsessed with Batman, but I never read the comics. I thought Green Lantern looked really cool when I was about 7. Then my obsession with Batman levelled off and literally last week I decided to get into comics so I started with Green Lantern: Rebirth.

#21 Posted by The Sadhu (853 posts) - - Show Bio

Dad showed me a comic strip in the news paper of The Phantom when I was young. I've been hooked ever since!
#22 Posted by ImperiousRix (1069 posts) - - Show Bio

I was always a fan of comic characters for as long as I can remember.  As a kid, it was all about Batman, coming off of watching Tim Burton's Batman on video and actually going to go see Batman: Returns as a young (too young, probably) boy.  Me and my older bro had about a bajillion different Batman action figures, and as such, we would pick up the odd Batman story here and there (probably not the best for young kids, as they had a tendency to have adult themes in them).  As I got a little older, I was weened into the Marvel Universe with the X-Men and Spiderman animated series.  I started really following the characters, picked up the odd issues here and there (usually X-Men, and ones that had storylines concurrent with who was or what was on the show), and continuing to amass copious amounts of action figures.  The first story arc I ever followed all the way through  was the Spiderman Clone Saga where Ben Reily is killed. 
I always liked superheroes, but can't say I started actually seriously reading trades and picking up series until late into high school.  I amassed a decent number of comics, which I've recently been going through and re-reading, but stopped when my jobless wallet couldn't keep up with all the series I was attempting to read. 
With my recent activity on Comic Vine, and my re-reading of all my old trades and comics, I must say I'm extremely tempted to begin the cycle anew.  Only time will tell if I do or don't.

#23 Posted by ZORN (1605 posts) - - Show Bio
Old 90's cartoons, more details later.
#24 Posted by sparty-dbq (793 posts) - - Show Bio

2006: I was already a fan of superheroes since I was a kid (TV shows and movies.  The 90's Spider-Man and X-Men cartoons are what started it.)  Then I started reading on IGN about Civil War.  I was intrigued and figured "What the hell?" and bought issue 1.  I was 21 at the time, so I was a little self-conscious about getting into something that people would see as "kiddy" at such an older age.  After CW ended, I pretty much stopped until I bought X-Men 3 on DVD at Best Buy, which offered a bonus CD-Rom with the first 60-odd issues of Ultimate X-Men on it. 
 
After that, things just escalated.  I went from buying one issue every month, to every other week, to two or three every other week, to one a week.  Now I buy between 4 and 7 a week.

#25 Posted by Sierra Comics Captain (46 posts) - - Show Bio

I watched old 90's cartoons all the time. Even at some point by mom gave  me a whole junkpile of spider-man issue from the clone saga. Which were destroyed sometime later. I go back into comic books when i was at my corner store. I saw an issue of spider-man so i read it and ive been hooked ever since. 
Note: A year ago i looked under an abandoned house across the street from me. There was a box containing over 80 issues of silverage books like. Spider-man, Judomaster, Blue Beete, and House of Mystery. I was so happy.

#26 Posted by BestChanceThor (97 posts) - - Show Bio

I started with buying the hardcovers of Civil War and Final Crisis. I was interested because of the recent success of the Movies Iron Man and The Dark Knight. I googled what was going on with the characters in their comic book representations and found out that Batman had died. I was like WHAAAT?!?! So i bought Final Crisis and have been hooked ever since
#27 Posted by Meteorite (3351 posts) - - Show Bio

Bought a Spider-Man video game, got interested in the characters, got into comics.

#28 Posted by superboy12 (255 posts) - - Show Bio

Once during a bussiness trip my step dad brought me back a scarlet spider action figure that came with the first issue of the series. I still have the book and the action figure.
#29 Posted by superboy12 (255 posts) - - Show Bio

Once during a bussiness trip my step dad brought me back a scarlet spider action figure that came with the first issue of the series. I still have the book and the action figure.
#30 Posted by Comiclove5 (1258 posts) - - Show Bio

Watched the 90's Batman series.
#31 Edited by darkrider (448 posts) - - Show Bio

my first comic was spider man 354 with moon knight punisher nova and  knight thrasher
#32 Edited by Zerosub33 (52 posts) - - Show Bio

My first comic was marvel comic presents issue 113 in 1992 I was 11 and being kind of a brat at the grocery store and my mother just had enough and resorted to ye old parental bribe. If I was good she would buy me a toy, I was good and she asked me what I wanted and I saw comics on an in store rack and was intrigued so I pointed at it and it was a done deal. I had no idea who wolverine was or ghost rider or iron fist and if mom had a clue as to the contents she never would have bought it but i have been hooked ever since. I still remember this villain in the ghost rider story who had a magic lens that "showed him the truth" but really made everyone he looked at just seem like monsters, they were pretty graphic visuals.

#33 Posted by jamdown (294 posts) - - Show Bio

my dad read comics and we ocasionally go to a comic store next to resturant we would go to, but i've havent gotten seriously into comics since about 3-4 years ago, but i've always like super heros
#34 Posted by CellphoneGirl (18854 posts) - - Show Bio

X-Men <3

#35 Posted by sora_thekey (8162 posts) - - Show Bio

I wrote my Origin story on my Profile:
 

My dad used to collect comic books (He was a proud owner of Amazing Fantasy #15 and Fantastic Four #1) so the world of super hero comics was not something I didn't know about. 
As a kid I watched the 90s X-Men and Spider-Man TV shows and I always thought how cool it would be to collect the comics...

My Family and I moved to this new house where the previous resident left a box of junk. In that box there were two comic books a Batman comic (which I totally forget the name/number etc..) and Amazing Spider-Man #399. That was the first appearance of a Gwen Stacy Clone... and it was Jackal vs Spider-Man and the Scarlet Spider
I knew who Spider-Man was so I paid no attention to the man in tights... I was more interested in the blond woman and Spider-Man look-a-like.
I did my research and went to the library to find stories of who Gwen Stacy and the Scarlet Spider were... Of course I found the tragedy that was the story of Gwen Stacy's death and fell in love with that story.
Many years later (2006) I decided I wanted to start reading comic books (Yes, just like that) so I went to a Boarders store and saw Ultimate Spider-Man #99... Which was the story of the first appearance of the Ultimate version of Gwen's clone. I bought it because on the cover there was this blond girl who for some reason i recognized as Gwen. I bought the comic book and got hooked on this "new" take of the stories I researched long ago in the library. 
After that comic books became my addiction, I first started collecting just Ultimate Spider-Man, then I started reading Ultimate Fantastic Four and after reading almost every Ultimate title Civil War and other 616 storylines called out to me. It wasn't until last year or so when I started reading other titles that were not Marvel comics. Now Batman, Amazing Spider-Man, Ultimate (Comics) Spider-Man, Uncanny X-Men and more are on my permanent pull list!
I find my story very ironic since the first comic book I ever read was the first appearance of Gwen Stacy's clone, while the first comic I ever bought was the first appearance of Ultimate Gwen Stacy's Clone...
Moderator
#36 Posted by Scike (7 posts) - - Show Bio

First comic I ever got was the 1970s print of Giant Size X-men #1 which I got at age 8 in 1990, just as the whole X-men/Marvel Comics craze at my school was beginning.  This book was like gold because it was so sought after.  Stupidly, I ended up trading it to a friend a few years later for the Death of Superman comic and a few newer X-men books.

#37 Posted by The WeatherMan (3214 posts) - - Show Bio

I used to read Disney comics back home in Russia when I was little, had a sizeable collection of them too. Ah, the good old days.
#38 Posted by Duo_forbidden (1161 posts) - - Show Bio

Watching the cartoons and the old movies. From X-men, Spider man, Batman, Superman, Iron man...once I found out that those cartoons came from comic books, I went to the bookstore with my dad to find out more.
 
My very first comic book was Spider man  #432 and Robin #52. I was 8 then. Funniest thing was that I was confused on why Tim Drake was Robin instead of Dick (because I watched the cartoon) 12 years later, I'm still reading Spider man and other comic book titles along with watching animated tv shows like Spectacular Spider man (RIP) Batman: Brave and Bold etc.

#39 Posted by nutzac4888 (45 posts) - - Show Bio

Used to go to K-mart and pick up bags of just random books.  One of the first ones I ever had was the Giant Sized X-men #1 and I'll never forget reading it in the back of my mom's mini van.  I used to take that thing with me all over the place and read it at any chance I got.  It was all well and good until my younger brother decided to trash and it make it worth squat.  I have since re-bought the issue and have it framed.  I grew up watching all of the classic cartoons and they had a heavy impact on the kind of books that I wanted to read when I was a kid.  Exciting times and it has since carried over to a collection that I am quite proud of.

#40 Posted by Thor'sHammer (67 posts) - - Show Bio

For my first Halloween, my parents went as Batman and Batgirl, from the 60's tv show and I was Bat-baby.  I always knew about "Super Heroes," and I watched anything on tv even  remotely about them.  But the first comics I remember buying are some kind of Archie Digest and Amazing Spider-Man # 288 and Incredible hulk # 332, I was 5 when these comics were on the newstands . The next bunch of comics I got were my Dad's old DC Superman and Batman books.  They weren't in great shape but they made a big impression.  Currently, the comic book Tsunami is 4ft high by 6ft wide, thats about 6,000 books. You could say I have a problem. 

#41 Posted by killermike (3175 posts) - - Show Bio

My friend brought the first seceret invasion to school and I was like "Hey man I'll but that off you." and he was like "Alright." 
 
Yep, been reading comics ever since.
#42 Edited by RafaGreyDanvers (20 posts) - - Show Bio

It's has always been all about Psylocke , for me! It all satrted with X-Men Mutant Apocalypse dor Super Nintendo back in 1993. I LOVED her character and since then i startd reading X-Men because of Psylocke!

#43 Posted by Hawkling (178 posts) - - Show Bio

I'm the youngest of four kids and grew up in the 90s and 00s. My oldest brother collected comics from the 80s and 90s so I basically learned to read on them. The first comics I remember reading were Psiforce #22 and D.P. 7 number 14. Of course I had no idea what was going on but that wasn't the point. These weren't like any other picture books I'd read. My brother didn't have an extensive collection but it got me in to reading and I idolized the heroes and their abilities. Most of my toys were of superheroes and I would obsess over the trading cards that Marvel and DC issued with their singles. The animated shows also hooked me in to loving superheroes. I watched all the cartoons every Saturday morning before hockey practices and dance class and that got me really in to the X-Men. X-Men Evolution was one of my favorite shows. I started reading a lot of manga around junior high/beginning of high school. Then I got a job at the local library in my Junior year around the same time as they started building a collection of graphic novels including Neil Gaiman's Sandman, Bone, Y: The Last Man, and Fables. The most influential book that got me to start buying my own comics was X-Men: Messiah Complex. I thought the art was amazing and I was deadset on buying all the X-Men comics I could. A bunch of my friends were really in to comics too, but we had no clue we all had this in common before we all started talking about what we read. Those people turned out to be my closest friends even today. Since then I've grown a pretty nice collection of Trades and singles. Comics have become a form of entertainment for me and an aspect of my life that I find important. Where else can you find that same kind of magic when you view great art and writing interchangeably?

#44 Posted by Braxxis7 (248 posts) - - Show Bio

90's cartoons and my father has been into comics
#45 Edited by mattydeNero (525 posts) - - Show Bio

 
 
DC's LEGENDS #8 by John Byrne.  I was roughly 5 fresh years old.  I was into "The Galactic Guardians: The DC Super-Powers Show"--or whatever it was called.  Had all the figs, etc.  My awesome Dad taped the old-school Super-Friends every morning for me.  I was a DC little kid and Superman was my home-boy. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  Now, the first comic I ever saw and decided, "This will be a part of my life for enternity."  Marvel Tales
 
#235.
  It was 1989 and it contained Spider-Man, Wolverine, and Colossus.  Spider-Man was a part of my cartoon watching growing up, and at that time the X-Men cartoon one-shot "Pryde of the X-Men" hit around then I think.   
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  
  
 
My kick-ass Mom told me I could get 2 comics.  Now, I knew this kid on my block that was older.  He
 
and this other old kid would talk comics on the bus and would occasionally have a few on them.  I thought Hulk was the coolest when he was grey.  I saw and heard a lot of the Wolverine/Patch and Grey Hulk team-up action in Hulk and Wolverine comics.  So Incredible Hulk #369 jumped out at me.  Plus, I saw the Blob.
#46 Posted by Hawkling (178 posts) - - Show Bio

Oh I also used to play the Giant Size Astonishing X-Men and Spider-Man games on my computer repeatedly.

#47 Posted by InvisibleKitty (49 posts) - - Show Bio

I started with the Comics when I was young (idr how old) I shopped at this huge comic/Card store in Tacoma (which is no longer) picking up the random comic with the best covers. before that it was just Archie. then I had my Dad pick up a big pile of X men 1 through maybe 20? idr. I had gotten hooked after collecting the Cards (along with Lady Death) and the first show I watched Was an Origanle X Men Cartoon Video where Jubilee First shows up.

#48 Posted by DennyColt (24 posts) - - Show Bio

Beyond the mainstream media, like the 1989 Batman movie, along with BTAS and even the reruns of the old 60s Batman, what got me into Batman comics was our local Bookmobile.
 
I'm not sure if everyone can relate, but the Bookmobile was a modified bus that housed a small collection of books. A mobile library, and they had a comic book rack. The mainstream media peaked my interest, but it was the comics that kept me a fan for years to come. And it was all because of the "gosh darn Bookmobile!" (yeah, I said it).

#49 Posted by shihigh2005 (3 posts) - - Show Bio

The X-Men cartoon got me hooked as well.  Saving up my allowance to get my favorite figures from the toy store every other week was a great memory. 

#50 Posted by jaeger2 (2 posts) - - Show Bio

I have been reading comics as little distractions since I was young (1997 or so), but what really got me hooked was Preacher. Specifically the Until the End of the world story arc. Probably still my favorite comic of all time. 

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