I know nothing about the "Astro City" comic series. Where do I start?

What’s it all about? Seems to be popular but I’ve never read it. Are them compilations? Is it really good?

astro doesn’t know about ASTRO CITY? What’s next, Fiver not reading Watership Down? Fenris not knowing about The Big Bad Wolf?

Here is the first ASTRO CITY trade paperback. Here is the second and the latest. All very good reads.

My favorite, by far, is ASTRO CITY: CONFESSION. Start with this collection; it’s guaranteed good reading.

What’s unique about Astro City: the characters age in more-or-less “real time”. Most of the stories are told from a unique POV – superhero’s girlfriend, man-on-the-street, former villain, etc… Dozens of familiar archetypical superheroes co-exist in a highly mapped superhero city that has every museum, school, street, and body of water referencing major comic book creators of the past-- in fact, Astro City is built up against the shadows of “Mt. Kirby.”

Lotsa fun stories, although the last major story arc, “Tarnished Angel” wasn’t my personal favorite. I’m looking forward to the new story arc that begins this year after too long a hiatus, “Dark Ages,” set in Astro City’s seventies. Maybe we’ll see a return of the original Confessor.

They’re threatening to tell the story of the Silver Agent. Insert “bad feeling” quote here.

Mr. Blue Sky. Point taken. Well, to be fair, he’s been hinting about that for – what – ten years now? I wanna know why Astro Citizens felt compelled to build a statue in his honor with a plaque that says To Our Eternal Shame. I understand that’s not the main point of the series but one of several details that come out in this other story arc he wants to tell.

I must admit, I’m curious. I just hope it’s well told.

I fell more positive about this story arc than either DARK KNIGHT STRIKES BACK or AVENGERS/JLA and even IDENTITY CRISIS.

Have a few hurtles to jump before it beats DC: NEW FRONTIER… which reminds me… I need to start a discussion thread on that soon.

I have yet to meet an Astro City comic I didn’t like. All I need is a copy of the Family Album TPB, and my collection will be complete (well, at least until the next Astro TPB comes out).

As for the secret of the Silver Agent, I’m interesting is reading that, too, but what I really want to get is the straight dope on The Gentleman. The guy is so unflappably nice, I’m just dying to know what makes him tick. His close resemblance to DC’s Captain Marvel also has me curious if there’s a pastiche involved…

(Favorite story? Don’t ask me to pick one – there are too many to choose from!)

Astro City’s publishing history is a little confusing because it starts and stops frequently due to Kurt Busiek’s recurrnig illness. (At one point they thought it was mercury poisoning but I think it ended up being something different.)

The first series was Kurt Busiek’s Astro City which ran six issues for Image. The book was written by Busiek and penciled & inked by Brent Anderson. It’s collected in “Life in the Big City.” A few months after the mini concluded, Astro City was relaunched as an ongoing with the same title. The ongoign was also Busiek/Anderson with Will Blyberg on inks. (IMO, Anderson is better with an inker.) That ran 22 issues, although the schedule slipped more and more as Busiek’s illness developed. (There were something like six months between #21 and #22, for instance.) There was also a #1/2 issue published by Wizard during the run of the ongoing which was later re-issued as a separate comic. All but the last two issues of the ongoing series were collected in “Family Album,” “Confessions,” or “The Tarnished Angel.” During the run of the ongoing, Jim Lee sold his Image studio Wildstorm, which publishes Astro City, to DC.

After issue #22 the series went on a long hiatus due to illness. Once Busiek had started to get better, though, Anderson wasn’t immediately available, although they did contribute a short Astro City story to one of the Sept. 11th tribute books. Eventually the series restarted with the Astro City: Local Heroes mini which ran five issues and then the Astro City Special, an extra-size issue about the hero Supersonic. Recently, a “Local Heroes” collection has come out with #21 and #22 of the ongoing, the Sept. 11th tribute, the Local Heroes min, the Special, and a half-page promo “story” that appeared to hype interest before the Local Heroes miniseries.

There’ve been two more Astro City one-shots since, the Astro City/Arrowsmith Flip Book which printed two half-size intro stories for the next arc of both books and the Astro City Visitors’ Guide, a faux-Baedecker discussing neighborhoods, restaurants, attractions and, of course, the supers. Upcoming is the next mini, Astro City: The Dark Age, to which the flip-book story is an introduction. It was originally solicited to begin recently, I think, but had been delayed. (It wouldn’t be Astro City if it came out on time.)


Both Captain Marvel and The Gentleman look like Fred MacMurray, actually. However, yes, it is a clear homage. Look at Looney Leo, the… talking… Lion. Much like, say, a Tawky Tiger we may know and love.

As far as Astro City introduction? Life in the Big City is the white one with the gentleman in red with a blue cape on the cover, right? That collects the first miniseries. Good stuff. Good introduction.

Seconded. The moment I finished reading “In Dreams” (first AC story ever, and first in the TPB), I was completely hooked on the series. And the rest of 'em were even better!

The best Superman story not using Superman.