Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Comic book spinner racks: damn I miss the 80's!!!

I came across this web site that was totally devoted to vintage photos and information about Duluth Minnesota of all places. And I thought I had the market cornered for obscure topics on the internet with this blog. This is a photo of a local magazine/book shop from 1982. Get a load of those awesome spinner racks! I was about 10 years old at the time (yeah I know some of you were still in diapers back then so kiss my ass). Man those bring back some memories! Back then there weren't as many comic shops around and those that were mostly had comic books sitting on shelves like you see today. Most of the stores you'd see these spinner racks with Marvel & DC Comics were places like the magazine sections of liquor stores, 711s, five n dimes and other general stores. That would be so cool to get a hold of one of these and just set it up some where at my place and put a bunch of lite reading comics on it. This particular spinner rack among other titles (not visible) contains contains in it's slots Captain America, Ghost Rider, Star Wars, Moonknight and of course ROM Spaceknight. It's 2011, somebody invent a time machine already!

19 comments:

  1. LOTS of nice Rom goodness there. They kept more than one month's worth at all times, it seems.

    Spinner rackes were a stape of my childhood and teen years, but of course, once the direct market hit and the speculators that came with it, no one could let spinner racks continue to exist. It's all about eliminating creases.

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  2. Wow those bring back memories. That's how I came across things like ROM, and The Defenders - by grabbing the book that stood out after I gave the thing a wheel of fortune spin (yeah I was that kid).

    There's one shop I know of that has spinner racks for their second hand beat up comics, but yeah their more mint comics are back on the stands.

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  3. creased comic book spines or not i'd give anything to go back in time and walk into one of those early 80's dime stores and give that rack a spin to get a good look at all the titles on it. there's a lot of things i miss about comic books in the 80's Siskoid. such as the 65 cents cover price and being able to take it with me to the crapper (my fortress of solitude)and not finish reading it by the time i'm done.

    Hi Dan, i did actually see that in later years once in a while in which you might find a spinner at a comic book or collectibles shop that had less valuable issues like the 3 for $1 boxes. great comments guys!

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  4. Hey Dan, thanks for sharing this pic.

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  5. This made me smile... and then feel a sort of melancholy sadness for the loss of those times.
    When this picture was taken (1982) I was 15 years old and just into full swing with my collecting.

    Spinner racks were the golden gates of childhood, allowing passage to better worlds beyond.

    One comic shoppe I frequent (well... frequenTED) still uses spinner racks for their new stuff (they avoid the poor condition hazard by PRE-bagging and boarding all comics - a service for which they tack on about a dime per issue).
    They also use a stationary magazine rack for the previous few months' issues (unless it's a hot issue, then it gets marked up to a bajillion dollars the week after it goes on sale - a.s.a.p).
    But as far as I know... they were one of the last to use the spinners.
    (I haven't been there in about 3 or 4 years.)

    For anyone looking to dive deeply into the mind-frame of how we all started collecting (with a fun interactive bit of Q-and-A) feel free to visit this old post of mine:

    http://tinyurl.com/Dorkwin-origin-of-geeksies

    ---

    Also, as a bonus treat, take a gander at the spinner rack I STILL HAVE - set up in my collector's room in this old post (one of my first on my blog):

    http://tinyurl.com/behold-tower-of-power

    ---

    Thanks for the flashback, David.

    ~P~

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  6. Jason, thanks for dropping by.

    and thanks for that heart felt commentary ~P~.
    for me i was 9-18 through the decade of the 80's. those are obviously some pretty impressionistic years in person's life. i'm so nostalgic about those times. i knew i had struck gold when i found this photo for both ROM fans specifically and comic book fans alike who were in their adolescents for that totally awesome decade.

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  7. My library still uses spinner racks for their comic books. (Yes, my library has comic books. It's a godsend for my little boy.) And I can remember the some of the grocery stores still selling them in spinner racks as recently as the late nineties. But that's in the midwest...we're about ten years behind everyone else.

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  8. Our local shop had them in the early '90's. They used them primarily for the recent back issues they wanted to get rid of, but I still miss them. And Random, up here in the north, we're at least as far behind the times as you are. Hell, you still find the occasional store with a rotary phone hanging on the wall.

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  9. Heehee. My mom still had one until the grandkids started running around the house and she was worried about them pulling them over because they were really heavy. Phones...not spinner racks. Although that would have been cool.

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  10. I was just in BORDERS book store (using up my remaining gift card bucks before they go out of bizniz), and remembered that they too mave a comics spinner rack.

    Unfortunately, each and every comic on that rack is mangled beyond the wants of anyone except 6-year-old kids who haven't a care of condition.

    (Although, that IS kind of a nice thought, right? Kids reading comics and not hoarding them in bags, boards and boxes.)

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  11. thanks for the reminder ~P~ this could be a good time to get some deals there. by the way, i love your Valentine's Day posting title. that's my kind of wicked non PC sense of humor.

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