The 10 Worst Comics-Related Gifts Guaranteed To Ruin Your Holiday
Despite the fact that we're usually pretty vocal about the stuff we like, comic book fans are notoriously hard to shop for. Not only are a lot of us already on a weekly schedule of buying exactly the comics we want every Wednesday, but the difficulty non-readers have in telling Superman from Spider-Man has led to pretty much everyone I know getting a stack of completely random back issues from a friend or relative. It's pretty much a comics-reading rite of passage.
But believe me, it could always be worse, and to prove it, I've scoured the Internet for ten of the absolute worst presents a comic book fan could get! So this year, when you open up that present to reveal your fourteenth full-screen copy of The Dark Knight, smile and say thanks, 'cause at least you didn't get this stuff.
And if you do get this stuff... I am so, so sorry.
Found on: Etsy
Seller's Comments: "TIP: Put this in a highly ornate gold frame for a very high-class effect! Show your friends that you are #1"Buying a print might not have the same zing as picking up a piece of one-of-a-kind original art, but when it's a print like this, I think it's fair to say that running into someone else who has it probably won't be an issue. Then again, maybe I'm being a little harsh on this one. For one thing, the artist's other paintings -- one of which involves a shark having a swordfight against a narwhal in the middle of a thunderstorm -- are basically the best pieces of art ever produced that do not depict RoboCop, and for another, I've got to admit that this one has its uses.
While most art can easily function as a conversation piece, this one is more geared towards the person who never wants to talk to anyone for longer than absolutely necessary or, if you happen to see it hanging on someone else's wall, works as a handy indicator that you're standing in the living room of a sociopath.
Found On: Etsy
Seller's Comments: " I picked it out to paint Raichu on cause it looked way cooler than the average jean jackets in my opinion."
One of the most intense memories I have from my childhood is the all-consuming desire I felt at age 9 for a jean jacket with Wolverine painted on the back hanging in the window of an airbrush store at the mall, right next to the arcade. In retrospect, if I'd actually saved up enough allowance to buy it, it would've represented the worst in a long line of terrible Wolverine-related purchases I've made in my life, but if you find yourself somehow transported to the year 1991, I can assure you that there is no better way to impress than through the time-honored medium of airbrushed denim.
If, however, you intend to remain solidly in the 21st century, you may well wonder why someone would go through the trouble of painting a relatively obscure but admittedly well-drawn Pokemon the back of jean jacket, or even express surprise -- as I did -- that jean jackets actually still exist.
Found On: eBay
Seller's Comments: "quite possibly the finest example surviving...WOW!"
If you've ever griped about how good kids these days have it as far as toys go -- what with their G.I. Joes that actually look as good as we thought they did in the '80s, and actually licensed Star Wars Legos that don't require you to paint the flagpoles blue and pretend they're lightsabers -- then imagine how your grandparents must have felt seeing your toys. Sure, you might not have had all the points of articulation, but at least your toys were not all ABSOLUTELY TERRIFYING.
I mean, is it just me? Because seriously, you guys: the eyes open, and the only thing that could make this thing creepier is if it randomly made crying noises that, over time, had been slowed down to a quarter of their original speed.
Found On: Stylin Online
Seller's Comments: "This is an officially licensed Batman t-shirt"
You know, the sad thing here isn't that an entire chain of people thought up, made, and distributed a Batman t-shirt based on the douche-tastic designs of Ed Hardy. The sad thing is that somewhere, there's a dude who saw this and had the immediate reaction of "At last, the shirt I've been waiting for."
Kilink Istanbul'da on DVD, limited to 1,000 Copies
Found On: eBay
Seller's Comments: "THE NEGATIVES FOR THIS FILM DO NOT EXIST SO THE PICTURE IS FAR FROM PERFECT.BUT IT IS MUCH BETTER THAN THE ONE OF THE TURKISH VCD."
A DVD of a super-hero movie might seem like a safe bet, but most fans already have copies of stuff like Dark Knight and Iron Man, and more dedicated collectors have no doubt picked up bootlegs of stuff like Roger Corman's unreleased Fantastic Four movie. There are even people, as unbelievable as it might seem, who already own copies of Elektra and Catwoman.
But I sincerely doubt there are a lot of super-hero fans who own copies of the 1947 classic from Turkey, Kilink Istanbul'da, in which a guy dressed as a skeleton saves a scantily clad woman from being tortured to death by Superman:
Or... maybe Superman's trying to stop the torture? I'll be honest, guys: Trying to teach myself Turkish by watching this trailer over and over is not exactly working out.
Found On: Etsy
Seller's Comments: "I think it would make the greatest gift box ever, for that special someone who prefers the darker side."
For those of you who might not be familiar with the unfathomable parade of excess that was the comics industry in the '90s, Lady Death was a character that rose to prominence on the strength of having hair that was roughly the height of the Chrysler building and a bust-size-to-number-of-skulls-on-her-bikini ratio that exceeded even Tarot: Witch of the Black Rose. And true to her name, she managed to be the end of at least three companies that published her adventures.
And now, she's been immortalized on a Treasure Box, which is in fact an "upcycled" cardboard box that at one time contained licensed candy bars (also featuring Purgatori!), and has since been tricked out with the goth equivalent of Bedazzling, and is sold to you for just under a C-note. But keep in mind, that does include a luxurious purple velvet lining, perfect for holding any objects you own that are slightly smaller than 24 not-very-good candy bars.
Found At: My local comic shop.
Seller's Comments: N/A
In one of the most inexplicable moves the company has ever made, Marvel licensed a series of motivational posters a few years back for the white-collar comic-lover to hang in his or her cubicle as a constant source of inspiration. They were, as you might expect just from reading that one sentence, completely insane, with Elektra (who kills people for a living) being lauded for "Excellence," and the Hulk -- yes, the Hulk -- as their example of "Goals."
My favorite, though, is the one of the Punisher above, because really: Hanging up a picture of a man with a gigantic machine gun and a skull on his chest and telling anyone who asks that you admire his commitment to murdering pretty much anybody who crosses him is not exactly the way to get promoted to middle management. Then again, It is, however, a fantastic way to get people to quit borrowing your pens.
Found On: Amazon
Seller's Comments: "Look cool without breaking the bank."
All right, look: Sometimes you have a friend who has a little too much to drink and takes a dare that he maybe shouldn't, and sometimes that friend ends up on a certain government watch list and has to go around the neighborhood explaining things to anyone in a two-mile radius. That doesn't mean that he shouldn't be able to announce his status in a fun way that also makes everyone feel a little safer about having him around!
Found On: Etsy
Seller's Comments: "These Nesting Dolls are made of wood (linden) by hand. Each wooden base is knife-grindered by top-quality joiner experts by hand. Later on wooden bases are passed to professional artists, who, using RUSSIAN folk methods of tree painting, turn the tree base into the masterpiece that I'm offering you."
As something of a Batman fan myself, I have to admit that I would be totally into a Batman-themed Matryoshka set, and considering these things are made and painted by hand in Ukraine, that $75 price tag doesn't seem all that high, either.
The thing I can't figure out is why, out of all the depictions of Batman available to the world in the year 2010, someone would put this much effort into commemorating Batman Forever. Was the appeal of immortalizing Nicole Kidman as Dr. Chase Meridian as a wooden doll that fit neatly inside Robin just too much to pass up?
Found On: eBay
Seller's Comments: "The peachskin that is soft and smoothing and that just like exterior of peach and that has hygroscopicity and permeability and waterproof of functions also. Notice:That is not include the pillow."
I'm not sure if I can sum this up any better than the seller, other than to say that yes: This is a pillowcase for a pillow that you have sex with.
And if the anime fan on your list is less into scantily clad catgirls and more into yaoi, don't worry! Your pals on eBay have you covered with a special bedsheet:
And really, isn't that what the holidays are all about?