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True to it’s name, “Frankenstorm” Hurricane Sandy made over 1 million combined New Jersey and New York citizens go without power. The comic book heavy area of New York was also overrun with problems. Don’t be expecting your comics on time, but find out how various comic companies were effected and what you can do to help.
New York is home to the headquarters of comic book publishers DC Comics, Marvel Comics, Archie and Valiant, has tons of prominent comic books stores like Midtown Comics, and the headquarters of the #1 online comic book site comiXology resides in Manhattan.
Various comic-related people shared their thoughts on the tragedy and the impact of it towards their comic industry.
The Valiant marketing and communications manager Hunter Gorinson said to Comic Book Resources:
“Even though Valiant has a small in-house staff, we are scattered all over the greater metropolitan area with employees in not only Manhattan, but Brooklyn, Queens, Long Island, New Jersey, and Connecticut as well… Obviously, our offices on W. 33rd St. have been closed since the storm began, and, even though Sandy has passed, most of us would be unable to commute anyway due to the various public transportation shutdowns currently in effect.”
The co-founder and CEO of comiXology, David Steinberger also talked to Comic Book Resources about how comiXology, through it all, was able to get all their digital releases out on time:
“The comiXology team really came together in the last few days, including hard work through the storm last night… We managed to launch ‘Diary of a Wimpy Kid’ last night at midnight and Marvel back issues this morning. We expect a near normal new comics day release schedule tomorrow — although please forgive us if we’re a little late flipping the switch — and almost all books set to launch will be live and ready to read! All this and no one has been in the office since Friday. Congratulations to the comiXology team!”
Despite Steinberger’s enthusiasm, comiXology, Marvel, DC and Valiant headquarters will be closed until the companies buildings are inspected. Because of this, comic fans last week had their comic books delayed and had to wait for their comic book fix. Diamond Comics was one company that told retailing comic book shops that UPS was going to have “unavoidable shipping delays.” States affected by these UPS routes include Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Washington DC. But the whole nation will be affected comic-wise by the storm because of the talented writers and artists located in these areas.
One case circling the inter-webs is the tragedy that befell J.K. Woodward, his family and his house, which was completed flooded by Hurricane Sandy, resulting in Woodward losing everything but two of his upcoming issues. The artist, who has worked on titles like Fallen Angel with Peter David, relies on selling his artwork and comics as his sole income and now needs help to get back on his feet. Showing how dedicated comic fans can be to the creators of their fandom (with a little initiative from Woodward who created his own fundraising ploy), fans have come together to send donations of clothes (mens size XL) to JK Woodward C/O/ Reiss Studios 4301 22nd street Studio 206 LIC, NY 11101 and have bought copious amounts of his artwork from Candace Comic Art.
But this is only one person who needs help, and there are many more ways comic fans have been helping out more people affected by Hurricane Sandy, comic-related or not. Buy comics from NYC stores, a lot of which have taken hits from Sandy, especially stores in Downtown New York and Staten Island. Try helping them out with a purchase that can be made easily online if it’s not possible for you to be there in person. But a lot of comic stores are open despite not having any power, like Jim Hanley’s Universe in the heavily-hit Staten Island territory. Here are some other comic book shops and their websites that I urge collectors to visit:
Desert Island Comics: http://www.desertislandbrooklyn.com/
Forbidden Planet: http://www.fpnyc.com/
Jim Hanley’s Universe: http://www.jhuniverse.com/
Manhattan Comics and More: http://www.manhattancomics.com/
Midtown Comics: http://www.midtowncomics.com/
But the number one way to help others deal with the tragedy is by donating to Red Cross. You can either text Red Cross by sending the word “REDCROSS” to 90999, which will add a $10 charge to your phone bill to contribute to the Red Cross’s fund for Hurricane Sandy, or for faster results go to the Red Cross’s official website and donate there. If you can only afford one thing, do this. Comics are not finished because of this storm, but some people’s lives could be if they don’t get money for food and shelter. About 110 people have already died because of the hurricane.
Help people out in their time of need, and become the real-life superhero you’re always reading about.