Greetings comic book fans and welcome to another episode of the Crank File. Every Wednesday used to be new comic book day and on Tuesdays I would spotlight some of the new books coming out. It wasn’t even that long ago, yet somehow it has felt like an eternity.
Comic shops across the Massachusetts have been shuttered since March, with many scraping by through increased online activity, alternate delivery options and curbside pickup. However with comics frozen at distribution, product releases delayed, and Free Comic Book Day canceled, there really hasn’t been much new product to move.
It has been a devastating blow to the direct market and the comic industry as a whole, but a tremendous outpouring of support from the community has helped many shops survive this pandemic. And as states prepare to gradually reopen businesses and life starts making its first uncertain steps back towards normalcy, there is some more good news to look forward to. New comics are coming next week.
Diamond Comics Distribution sent a letter to account holders announcing that distribution of new comics will resume in limited capacity on May 20th.
Comic publishers have released a list of new titles that will be available for sale on May 20, Newsarama has the complete list here: (https://www.newsarama.com/49999-diamond-comics-distribution-may-20-shipping-titles.html). Remember, just because Diamond is resuming distribution services does not necessarily mean that your local comic shop will be open to sell them. Massachusetts officials have yet to release details about when certain businesses will be allowed to reopen, so check with your local shop before stopping in.
It is unsure what the comic shop experience will feel like when stores eventually do reopen their doors. There will certainly be a sense of caution for a while, trepidation at the thought of flipping through rows of back issue boxes or digging for a higher-grade new release. But I think my first trip back to my LCS will mostly joyful, a comforting reminder that despite all of the horrors and uncertainty we have faced over the past two months, our safe place, our fortress of solitude, still exists.
Until next week, carpe comics!