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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas in Comics!

There was a time when it snowed in comic books.

And I’m not talking about those giant-sized holiday specials, either. I’m talking about the time when you opened up your favorite comic book and hey, Spider-Man is having an adventure and OH MY GOSH IT’S CHRISTMAS OVER THERE!

I don’t know about you, but I used to get a kick out of seeing Christmas-y things in my comics as a kid. Sure Marvel had their Marvel Holiday Specials before, but there’s something a little more special about picking up a regular issue and seeing Spider-Man pass by a blinged-out-for-the-holidays Rockefeller Center on the way to kicking bad guys in the face. It made me feel like my favorite superheroes and I are on the same dimension, the same calendar page.

Heroes having adventures over the holidays isn't new. One of Batman's earlier adventures was during Christmas in Batman #9, considered to be Batman's first Christmas story!

Art by Bob Kane.

Spider-Man had a love-hate relationship with Christmas, what with him swinging around New York patrolling during the holidays and not snuggling with Mary Jane under the warm blankets (because screw OMD). But I loved the fact that Spidey celebrated Christmas just like me.

A panel from X-Man #24. Art by Roger Cruz.

A panel from Sensational Spider-Man #24. Art by Todd Nauck.

It's not just Marvel...DC had its share of adventures during the holidays. One of my favorite stories was in Starman #27, where Jack Knight helps a down-and-out Santa. Warning: this WILL bring a tear to your eye!

Art by Steve Yowell.

Also, during that weird Warrior phase he had, Guy Gardner's bar was open during the holidays, and everybody was invited!

A panel from Guy Gardner: Warrior #39. Art by Marc Campos.

Not just the stories, I loved it when my favorite artists get to depict Christmas in their books. This Joe Mad splash page from Uncanny X-Men #341 blew me away as a kid and remains one of my favorite images ever!

 Art by Joe Madureira.

It's sad that with long storyarcs and 'writing for the trade', we'll probably never get to see seasonal issues like these anytime soon. But if you're itching for some stories set during Christmastime, the intermittent holiday specials and spectaculars put out by the Big Two are your next best bet.

So what were your favorite comic book holiday stories? Let's talk about it in the comments! Happy holidays and thanks for reading!

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