It’s not a surprise to find that comic books are not a uniquely American experience. After all, Andrew and I recently talked to Mike Kennedy of Magnetic Press about translating French comics into English for American audiences. Still, it’s amazing to me to see that Madrid, Spain has completely embraced American geek culture.
Giant statues of Iron Man and a Star Wars stormtrooper stood guard outside a giant Disney section of one of Madrid’s most ubiquitous department stores, El Corte Inglés. I wasn’t surprised, since Disney is a master of global marketing, but the level of geekery in Madrid was certainly more than I expected.
American mega comic book publishers have a huge presence here in Spain. This doesn’t come as any shock, since there have been a slew of comic book movies and TV shows lately, which have international presence.
However, while it is probably predictable that Spanish reprints of comics that feature the cast of recent Hollywood blockbusters would be pretty readily available on this side of the Atlantic, I found that the comic book love in Spain is much deeper and broader than the most recent Avengers movie. Next to the stack of Los Vengadores trades was a shelf full of smaller press comics by Neil Gaiman and Scott McCloud!
Teresa and I also bumped into a full fledged comic book store that rivals several of my favorite ones back home for cleanliness and variety of geeky goodness. The owner was sweet and unassuming, but he had some of the awesomest figures and memorabilia I had ever seen–even in the US!!
I can’t wait to see more geeky stuff in other places in Europe, but for now, Madrid has convinced me that I can find a LCS anywhere I go this summer!