Return to the Forbidden City

So I bought this “Planet of the Apes” #10 comic book (dated march 1991) from East Side Records. I didn’t actually purchase it though…When I walked up to the counter to ask how much it was the owner of the store just gave it to me. He was like “Just take it, give it a good home. It’s been sitting on the shelves for years.” And so here I am, reading it this lovely afternoon.

It’s quite good actually, and stays true to the series. My favorite part though is not the comic but the author’s bizarre little intro on the inside cover:

Happy Valentine’s Day!
Some days I absolutely hate Planet of the Apes. Contrary to what
some people may think , it’s a tough job putting together a monthly comic book(please please put away the violins and the kleenex.) Some days I plod through a story like an explorer slogging through quicksand. It’s utter hell I tell you, utter hell.

But there are other days, sitting in my office behind my Mac SE, that I can feel the grass beneath my feet, the wind rushing through my hair. All around me, I see Apes chatting away, sharing stories, telling secrets. A grand drama unfolds before me, and I’m a part of it.

Charles Marshall, December 1990

And so it is, that’s almost exactly how I feel. One minute I’m walking through the Target parking lot all set to buy some goldfish crackers…the next moment I’m wandering through a post apocalyptic wasteland. There’s very little difference between imagination and reality depending how you can perceive things. Sure, you could say we don’t live in a post apocalyptic world…but that’s because it’s been gradual so most people don’t notice. But take someone like George McFly’s 1955 self from Back to The Future….and plop him smack dab in the middle of Tempe Marketplace in 21st century Phoenix Arizona…and my guess is his reaction would be similar to that of Michael J Fox as Marty McFly arriving in the alternate 1985 in Back to the Future 2 where Biff owns a Casino and is married to Marty’s mom whom he purchased breast implants for and mostly treats like shit.

I must say, I was never really a comic book kid. I went through phases for sure, but mainly I used to read MAD books(and the magazine.) However, one thing I love about old comic books are the ads…for stuff like sea monkeys, 80’s saturday morning cartoons and various, painfully dated, long forgotten relics.

And sure enough this issue has an ad…for another comic: “Alien Nation, The Skin Trade.” I almost forgot all about that whole Alien Nation thing. Something else for me to waste my time with.

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