Remember why you liked comics in the first place?
Our Comics Empower Project continues!
This time, Lacey tells her story:
I spent the younger part of my youth living in Australia where we could walk to the local comic book store and buy an issue for pennies.
Learning about the Marvel universe challenged my mind and introduced me to concepts relating to genetics, radiation, cosmology and power.
It’s a lot to wrap ones mind around but the artists who introduce these stories to kids make it so entertaining that we don’t realize how much goes into it.
In my later teens, I got really into temple-style Kung Fu.
I learned all kinds of styles and weapons. Back then, Jet Li was becoming very popular in China but no one knew who he was in the U.S. yet. We used to go to underground Chinese theaters and watch his movies. I became a HUGE fan of kung fu action flicks.
I loved the cowboy stories, the myths and legends and even modern stories like “Body Guard from Bejing” and “Fist of Legend,” a spin off and tribute to the classic Bruce Lee film. I was also a huge fan of Jackie Chan.
This is when comic book stores came back into the picture.
Comics stopped becoming popular due to other media outlets taking over such as home movies and video games. But fans of this alternative culture still started hole-in-the-wall collectible shops where they sold old star wars toys, comics, figurines and games. I mostly went to rent and buy underground kung fu movies and anime. Eventually, that trend died because US film distributors bought the rights to all of those movies and people who sold them were shut down.
When I moved to NY to pursue an education in the arts, I still found myself lingering in the comic book stores and got caught up in dark fantasy. I loved the original story of “The Crow” by James O’Barr. I got lost in “The Sandman” and “The Books of Magic” series before Neil Gaiman became a best selling novelist. He says that people still ask him for more Sandman comics more than anything thing else.
I loved these stories because they involved dreams and archetypes. They taught me about the magic within my own psyche and how I need to master my insecurities in order to wield that power, or have it destroy me.
I also love the X-Men comics because it dealt with he same theme of power, ego and how hard it really is to know right from wrong.
These comics contained some of the greatest themes and stories but they also displayed the most amazing artwork. I was a huge fan of artists such as Louis Royo and Frank Miller. I highly respected the eye for detail and dedication they put into making the images so compelling.
Eventually, I wrote several plays that were workshopped and produced in some small theaters in New York. The structure of reading comics also helped me write dialogue for the plays and create the drama. I moved back to Los Angeles to raise my family and published two novels.
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