X-POSITION: Phoenix, Upstarts & More Tear Up Bowers & Sims' "X-Men '92"
Legal | The trial of two Iowa men accused of plotting an armed attack in August the Pokemon World Championships has been delayed until November. Kevin Norton, 18, and James Stumbo, 27, have been in custody since their Aug. 22 arrest outside Boston on charges of possession of a large-capacity weapon and other crimes. Prosecutors say the two, who allegedly made multiple online threats against the event, drove from Iowa to Boston with guns and hundreds of rounds of ammunition in their car. Their trial was originally set for May 9. [Ames Tribune]
The burglar who broke into All the Rage Comics and Games in Festus, Missouri, early Tuesday made off with two KISS action figures, some Pokemon trading cards, a laptop and the cash register, but he left behind something important: his cellphone.
A burglar used a crowbar to break into a Macon, Georgia, comics store early Thursday and stole a reported $250,000 worth of vintage comic books.
Owner Will Peavy told WMAZ TV that the thief made off with the store’s cash register and safe, containing $2,500 in cash, but the real money was in the comics, which included the first eight issues of DC Comics’ 1963 Justice League of America series, and the first 20 issues of Marvel’s The X-Men.
Crime | Police in Little Rock, Arkansas, have arrested a man suspected in the attempted robbery of The Comic Book Shop on Monday. Robert Leonard, 24, has been charged with aggravated robbery after he allegedly told a store clerk, “I hate to do this, but I have a gun, and I want a box of Magic cards for my son’s birthday.” However, he left the shop without the cards. [Little Rock Police Facebook]
Manga | Manga sales in the United States are on the upswing, and Justin Sevakis has some reasons why: a few blockbuster series that are “gateway drugs” (Attack on Titan, Tokyo Ghoul and One-Punch Man); more focus on niche cultures in the mainstream, which means bookstores, for instance, are carrying more manga and graphic novels; and the practice of simulcasting anime in the United states and Japan, which builds interest in the associated manga. [Anime News Network]
Crime | A sheepish would-be robber walked away empty-handed Monday afternoon after attempting to hold up a Little Rock, Arkansas, comic store for Magic: The Gathering Cards. “I hate to do this, but I have a gun, and I want a box of Magic cards for my son’s birthday,” the man allegedly told a clerk at The Comic Book Shop. However, when the employee offered him a pack of the cards, he reportedly declined and left, saying, “Don’t call police.” The suspect remains at large, although police have distributed an image of him taken from a security camera. [Arkansas Democrat-Gazette]
A California woman led police on a chase Sunday afternoon while driving a minivan painted to look like the Mystery Machine from Scooby-Doo. She would have gotten away with it, too, if it weren’t for those meddling — no, wait, she’s still at large.
Crime | Deputies in Orange County, Florida, have arrested a man suspected of committing eight armed robberies — two of which while dressed as Batman. Investigators say 26-year-old Juan Carlos Nieves Morales — dubbed the “Bad Batman” — kicked off the string of crimes on Jan. 22, targeting Dollar Stores, food stores and even a paint shop. He allegedly entered the businesses armed with a black or silver handgun, and demand cash, and sometimes even property, from the employees. [CBS12, WDBO]
Deadpool may be out here winning the hearts and minds of Americans countrywide with his smash box office hit, but it only takes one jerk to ruin a guy’s good name. Okay, fine, maybe it’s up to three jerks now. Regardless, it is totally unfair and not nearly funny enough.
A white man between 5’9″ and 5’11” and weighing roughly 200 lbs, that wore the mask of Marvel’s merc with a mouth, champion of the little guy, R-rated star, upstanding community member and all-around good hang Wade “Deadpool” Wilson stuck up the U.S. Bank in South Point, Ohio the afternoon of Friday, February 27, illicitly making off with $2,000 while ruining a marathon-like run of nearly flawless commercial branding.
Creators | Writing for New York Magazine’s Vulture blog, Abraham Reisman takes a warts-and-all look at the career and legacy of Stan Lee in a lengthy article article alternately titled “It’s Stan Lee’s Universe” and “Why is Stan Lee’s Legacy in Question?” Peppered with quotes from the likes of Roy Thomas, Gerry Conway, Mark Evanier, Colleen Doran, Paul Levitz and Mark Waid, it’s a deep dive into Lee’s history, touching upon everything from his disputes with one-time collaborators Jack Kirby and Steve Dikto to his more recent output to the state of his company POW! Entertainment, which by most indications is struggling. [Vulture]
Thieves broke into an Austin, Texas, gaming store early Sunday and walked out with an estimated $75,000 worth of Magic: The Gathering cards.
Security footage shows two men using a water meter key tor tear open the door of Pat’s Games at about 1 a.m. Sunday, and then leaving less than a minute later with three display cases containing about 300 of the store’s most valuable Magic cards. “They knew exactly what they were looking for,” Jim Hughes, the store’s business operations manager, told the Austin American-Statesman.
These are tough times for Tony Stark, the billionaire playboy/inventor/superhero: Despite all of that wealth, fame and technology, he’s fallen so far that he’s turned to robbing a convenience story. Or at least he tried to rob one.
Police in Aberdeen, Scotland, say a man wearing a blue hoodie and Iron Man mask and wielding a knife entered a convenience store Tuesday night and demanded the owner empty the cash register. However, this Golden Avenger wasn’t prepared to be confronted by his greatest enemy — not Iron Monger or The Mandarin, but a fan.
Although the marketing for the upcoming Deadpool effort has gotten imaginative, this burglary in Florida probably isn’t part of Fox’s campaign.
The Brevard County Sheriff’s Office is on the hunt for two men dressed as the Marvel antihero who broke into a gas station in Cocoa, Florida, early Jan. 7 and removed an ATM. However, as the images below show, these were Mercs with Mouths, not with a brains.
Crime | An alert employee of JHU Comic Books in Staten Island helped foil a would-be shoplifter who was trying to make off with $114 worth of comics in his pants. According to police, Dani Ward noticed that Nicholas Perciballi, 22, was acting nervous, and she suspected he might be up to something, so she kept her eye on him as he shopped. Sure enough, as he was leaving the store, he allegedly dropped some comics from underneath his shirt. Ward reportedly called out and ran after Perciballi, then called the cops, who picked him up about 20 minutes later. When he was searched, police say they found four packets of heroin and a number of comics hidden in his clothes. Perciballi has been arrested three times in recent months on drug charges, and he allegedly told police, “I’m selling to support my habit and to cover my court fees from my last case.” [New York Daily News]
Despite being one of the most recognizable superheroes in the world, Spider-Man has proved popular with real-world criminals, who don his mask with surprising frequency while committing illegal acts, ranging from convenience-store robberies to gun-store burglaries. And let’s not even get started on all of those fights on Time Square and Hollywood Boulevard.
We can now add two more incidents to the list, this time in Georgia.
Crime | Police in Amarillo, Texas, are searching for a man who robbed the Big Apple Comics at gunpoint on Tuesday. An employee was locking up the store at about 7:10 p.m. when a man approached him and told him to unlock the doors. The employee resisted, and the robber reportedly drew a semi-automatic pistol and demanded money. The employee handed over an undisclosed amount of cash. [Amarillo Globe-News]
Passings | Zack Davisson, who translated Shigeru Mizuki’s works into English for Drawn and Quarterly, pens the definitive obituary of the late manga master, writing not only about his impact on Japanese culture but also his criticism of Japan’s actions in World War II and its treatment of disabled veterans, which led writer Jake Adelstein to call him “the Voice of Japan’s Conscience.” [The Comics Journal]