365 Reasons to Love Comics #342

I'll probably get some weird looks after today's column. (Archive.)

(Kirby is coming... Kirby is coming...!)


342. The smell

(Image blatantly stolen from Chapel Hill Comics' website 'cause I needed a generic comic shop-y image. Go buy your comic wares at Chapel Hill. Jeff Parker's gonna be there this week! Bam. Free publicity.)

Anyway, yeah, that's right. I love the sweet, delicious scent of comic books, and, in fact, I'd been thinking about dedicating one of these columns to such from the very beginning. Let me explain my personal olfactory history with the comics industry.

When I was a younger lad, I had something of an anxiety problem. I could be excited for something or perhaps dreading something, but the reaction would be the same-- massive nervousness that set off my gag reflex. I've vomited in some amazing places, let me tell you. Anyway, I only ever found one cure for this anxiety: the smell of a comic shop.

That amazing aroma of ink and paper is a total panacea. Really, if you were a book-sniffer, you'd get it. Doesn't anybody else take a whiff of a new book? I do. Does that make me weird? Other people do it, right? Right?

I miss the smell of the old comics, though. The new ones, what with their slick pages and fancy printing, have become too artificial for me. I miss the scent of the old-timey paper, friends. But, let's see. Out of a random sampling of comics I have nearby... Justice League Unlimited's got the cheaper paper and therefore has a nicer musk. All Star Superman always has an interesting scent. I blame the G-Mozz pheromones. Jack Kirby's Fourth World Omnibus smells like a glue-filled woodshed. Mmm.

Don't let your comics get too acidic. Your nostrils shan't forgive you. I've won a few books in auction lately that've probably been sitting in bags for ages and ages. Let your comics run naked and free! Let them breathe!

Yeah. Yeah, this got weird.

What's the best comic you've sniffed lately?

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