This post was originally published on November 30 2009
Since Doug has shared many of his treasures with all of us here at the blog, I thought I might welcome all of you into my comics sanctum, a place where I can meditate on all things geek. The sanctum is in a constant state of flux, with new arrivals coming in, and old favorites being pulled out of a closet or box to take their place on a shelf or wall for a little while.
I will ask you to pardon the dust, as living in the desert makes it nearly impossible to keep things dust-free for very long. Hopefully the overall cool factor will make up for that!
First off - come on in.
You see here the view from the doorway. Dead center is one of the most essential elements of any sanctum - the comfy chair. In fact, this chair is so comfy, it is often a struggle to stay awake in it. Many a comics review has started here, only to be delayed by a nap.
Behind the chair is the one item I almost regret buying, Captain America's shield. Don't get me wrong, it's a beautiful replica (and hefty too), but I still can't believe I spent so much money on it. Easily the most expensive 'toy' I've ever bought.
To the left of the shield is an autographed picture of the Man himself, Stan Lee. Also included in that photo frame is a small piece of paper, on which I got both Stan Lee and Jack Kirby's autographs back in 1975 at the San Diego Comic Con. It's a long story but let's just say that Kirby signed first and when Stan saw his signature, I wasn't sure I would get his autograph! However, Stan was a great guy and did sign - although he turned the paper upside down - so Kirby's name was not above his?
To the right of the shield is one of my favorite posters, Alex Ross' interpretation of Marvel in the 1970s. It has an amazing number of 70s characters on it, all in the beautiful Ross style. You'll notice as we look around the sanctum that a lot of my art is from Ross. What can I say? He's the best.
Also in the first pic you can see some comic boxes. Those are primarily either some of my favorite books, or new books. Besides the boxes there I have another 12 in the closet of the room, and the vast bulk, 24 more, downstairs in the vault (aka the utility closet). I really need to sell some books.
Proclaiming their prowess from the top of the comic boxes are Thor and Doctor Doom. I'm not an action figure collector but my fiance thought these were great and he knows they are two of my favorite characters, so he got them for me. They do look really outstanding. In the window are the Avengers mini-mates figures, going all out against Ultron.
In the corner atop the bookcase is my tribute to Ray Harryhausen, the incredibly skilled artist behind Jason and the Argonauts, Seventh Voyage of Sinbad, Golden Voyage of Sinbad, and so many other classic fantasy films that were my bread and butter as a kid. Harryhausen made these creatures come alive, with their own personalities and idiosyncrasies. I can never get enough of his work.
The bookcase below the Harryhausen figures holds primarily my film reference books, my comics DVD-ROMs, and my Lord of the Rings books. The Creature from the Black Lagoon holds a business card for the now defunct Parkway Theater in Oakland, California. The Parkway was an amazing place with the feel of an old glamorous theater that had aged somewhat. They would serve pizza and sandwiches (and beer), and they were home to Thrillville, a wonderful venue for all films strange and wonderful. Thrillville was a once-a-month show hosted by Will the Thrill and his wife, Monica the Tiki Goddess. It had to be experienced to believed. Let's just say I had a lot of great nights at Thrillville -and I saw the Creature in 3-D there too.
And before you ask, yes, that metallic Godzilla does look pretty weird. It opens up to reveal a secret base inside, with a tank, jet plane, launching missiles, and some sort of odd, telescoping pole. I have no idea why this exists but I bought it about 25 years ago and it still makes me shake my head whenever I see it.
Next time: The Corner of the Jedi!
UPDATE: Karen here, speaking to you from the future -well, from Jan 2, 2015. I was stunned to see this post from five years ago. The room has changed so much, especially over this past Christmas. I'd like to add a couple of pictures, just for comparison's sake -and for posterity: