Eisner-winner Comicazi

When I went to Boston last year, I had two stops on my schedule: Comicopia and The Million Year Picnic. At both places, employees spoke highly of another shop in town: Comicazi.

So I made time to visit Comicazi that day, taking the Red Line train to Davis Square in Somerville. The store was new to me, but has a much larger profile today thanks to being selected last month for the Spirit of Retailing prize at the Eisner awards.

Comicazi helped to broaden my understanding of the comics market for my book. The store has a giant selection of games and vintage toys, and it has a fun, welcoming vibe. Its co-owners (Robert Howard was the one I interviewed that day) have developed an audience with in-store clubs and events. But all of those other things rest on a foundation of selling comics and books. I had never seen this mix of products done this way.

Comicazi dukes

Dukes of Hazzard action figures exist. For reasons unclear to me, Uncle Jesse is more expensive than the rest.

local art

A bookcase for comics by local artists is right next to those by major publishers.

the ladies.jpg

This display is near the front door, with some titles marked to be noticed by women shoppers. And yes, “The ladies of Comicazi” is a weird turn of phrase.