Obama Amazing Spiderman

Like many other comic book enthusiasts, I watched in amazement as the throngs of the general population flocked to comic stores to scoop up an issues of the “Obama Spiderman”. Shades of the comic collecting folly of the late 80’s, the original issue sales went through the roof, catching even some comic shops by surprise, illiciting numerous print runs, all with variant covers of course. While many undoubtedly sought out the comic as a memento of the inauguration of the first African American president, others also had dollar signs in their sights, firmly believing that this was going to be a collectible item in the future, notwithstanding the very notion that anything called a ‘collectible’ at the point of initial sale defies the definition itself. I watched the events unfold with amusement thinking how soon those issues would find their way to the cheapie bins.

Spiderman ObamaBut even I was surprised last week to find the Marvel Premiere Edition Hardcover trade of “Election Day” in a 2 foot stack at the local mini comic convention and seeing a vendor vainly trying the sell these for a mere $5. That’s $5 for a collection comprised of 5 Amazing Spiderman comics (#584-588), the Obama back-story of ASM #583, and three other stories as well, all immaculately bound and ready for the reading. While it’s not unusual to find great sales at conventions, this was a $30 item going for $5.

Well for that price, I picked one up for myself. Not only do I get to read an Spiderman storyline (which even if it sucked, would be worth the $5) but I also get an artifact of yet another instance depicting crowd mentality overcoming common sense. I’m not up to speed with the current Spiderman stories, so a lot of the characters and situations in the “Election Day” storyline are new to me. That said, it was still an enjoyable series and OK for anyone to pick up. Certainly worth 5 dollars. And the Obama back-story that was used to envelope this whole series was, as expected, nothing but a fluff commercial grab. It’s only a few pages long, featuring reporter Peter Parker attending the inauguration when the mandatory presence of Spiderman makes it’s way into the plot. Completely forgettable. The only redeeming characteristic of the back-story was that in the end I got to pick up a complete Hardcover of an ASM series for 5 bucks!

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