Top 5 (Okay 6) Posts for 2015

2015FebSLiving

My top-clicked image of 2015! Okay, weird.

In my previous life at TFAW, I was a sucker for analytics. I could get sucked down the rabbit hole of Google Analytics and make all kinds of pretty charts! So when I realized I’ve been blogging long enough to see a whole year of data, I thought I’d dig into my top five posts for 2015.

But Elisabeth, you say, there are six posts here! That’s because one of my top posts was an anomaly (you’ll see why), so I’m kind of not counting it. But it was interesting to see what people actually read and found on my blog–and I was surprised by what popped up!

#6: Fire Walk With Us: Twin Peaks Dinner Party

This was a fun one–and it reminds me, I never wrote a post for our follow-up, our Twin Peaks Brunch! Putting it on the editorial calendar now, especially with the new Showtime series coming up in 2017.

ClassicXMen33_3

My second-most clicked image of 2015! Classic X-Men #33, page by Ann Nocenti and John Bolton.

#5: Why Jessica Jones Is the Hero We Need

This post was really close to my heart–I love the Alias comics, and I was really excited to watch Jessica Jones (I’ve seen it all now!). I really wanted to articulate something I needed to hear when I was younger–that it’s okay to fail–and I’m glad it resonated with a lot of you as well.

Real Lilly Pulitzer

My third-most clicked image of 2015! Image from Lilly Pulitzer.

#4: The Myth of the Desperate Woman: Go Get What You Want, Ladies

Another soul-searching, gut-wrenching post! Thanks for not leaving me hanging, guys. It was triggered by my favorite ex-boyfriend getting married. I was super happy for him and his wife, but I admit, it brought me back to the end of our relationship, when we split up . . . in part because he didn’t want to get married.

#3: Thanksgiving Pre-Prep: Your Secret Weapon to Less-Stressful Entertaining

Ha ha ha ha! Listen. This is a really good post–if you’re into entertaining. But the reason so many people read this article is because Gerard Way, a friend who’s a musician and comic book writer, retweeted this on Twitter and he has many, many thousands of followers who probably thought he was doing his grandmother a solid.

#2: Make Your Own Lilly Pulitzer Dress

I wrote this post on a lark after the Lilly Pulitzer for Target collection sold out so quickly. I became obsessed with the idea of finding a sewing pattern and fabric so I could (hypothetically) make my own. This post gets a lot of organic traffic, so there must be a lot of would-be sewers out there. I think this is just the excuse I needed to make one this spring–I’ll document it here, dear readers.

ClassicXMen33_1

My fourth-most clicked image of 2015. Page from Classic X-Men #33 (aka Uncanny X-Men #127) by Chris Claremont, John Byrne, Terry Austin, and Glynis Oliver.

Target Lilly Pulitzer

My fifth-most clicked image of 2015. Image by Target. You all like dresses!

#1: 10 Days, 10-Item Wardrobe: The First Five Days

Wow! So my top two posts this year were . . . fashion? This got a lot of play because it was featured on Jennifer L. Scott’s Daily Connoisseur blog. I got the 10-item wardrobe concept from her books, so I’ll take the plug! This reminds me that I need to write a winter 10-item wardrobe post–I’ve been waiting until after Christmas and my birthday (next week) to collect a few final pieces. Most of my clothes hit the two-to-three-year mark this winter and needed to be replaced, but I’m almost there. Maybe next week?

So enough about me . . . what do you think about me? Heh. Seriously, if there’s more types of things you’d like to read about, give me a holler!

Comics That Changed My Life: Classic X-Men #33 & Uncanny X-Men #245

Like a lot of comics fans, I’ve loved many titles over the years (current favorites: All-New X-Men, Lazarus, and Revival, among others). However, I can pinpoint the issues that literally changed my life forever: Classic X-Men #33 and Uncanny X-Men #245.

Classic X-Men #33

Uncanny X-Men #245

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was the year 1989. I was 14 and possessed by the calm, sure knowledge that someday, somehow, Axl Rose and I would meet and fall in love (I would then join the band on tour as their cook, of course). I was on a trip to Hawaii with my parents and younger brother. But while I was keeping an eye out for Axl, disaster struck: I realized I had read all the Archie comics they had at the convenience store near our rented condo.

This left me with no choice but to grudgingly read the only option immediately available to me: the “boy comics” my brother had picked up, the aforementioned Classic X-Men #33 and Uncanny X-Men #245.

Classic X-Men #33

Classic X-Men #33

Classic X-Men #33

Classic X-Men #33, a reprint of Uncanny X-Men #127, was an action-packed entry into the X-Men. Brief recap: the X-Men are in Scotland, fighting Proteus, a terrifying and powerful enemy who just happens to be the secret mutant son of their ally, Moira MacTaggart. And he kicks their butts, leaving the team shaken to the core, leading Cyclops to instigate a fight with Wolverine and the rest of the team that is visually fun to read and showcases each member’s strengths and personalities.

This was a great way to “meet” the team, and the drama of Moira steeling herself to kill her own son (who eventually took over the body of her estranged, abusive husband!) was intriguing to me. Chris Claremont’s character-focused writing style appealed to a girl who was ready to graduate from Anne of Green Gables. This issue also began my lifelong love of (some might say obsession with) the beautiful and iconic art of John Byrne.

Note: This issue also had a bizarre, gory backup story by Ann Nocenti and John Bolton starring Havok and Polaris that freaked me out: Havok basically imagines them dying horrific deaths over and over, and then rejects life with the X-Men. Because of this, Havok creeped me out for years!

After reading Classic X-Men #33, Uncanny X-Men #245 was totally confusing. To anyone who hasn’t read this gem, titled “Men!”: this was a comedic one-off–a breather after the drama of Inferno–drawn by a young Rob Liefeld, in which inept aliens decide to take over the planet–beginning with Australia, as you do–while the men of the X-Men have a guys’ night out. Oh, and the aliens have a “Jean Bomb” that looks just like Jean Grey, which they claim will “fatally disrupt any and all relationships.” Since I hadn’t yet read the Dark Phoenix Saga or Inferno (something I would quickly remedy) the humor was lost on me.

Uncanny X-Men 245

These two comics lit a fire in me that caused me to seek out my local comic shop for the very first time. I started a box; first with just Uncanny X-Men, later expanding to Excalibur, X-Men, X-Factor, and X-Force. From that moment on, all of my extra funds were funneled into a back-issue collection I still have today. No lip gloss or tapes for me–I was spending my money on cardboard boxes, bags and boards, and comics; family vacations now meant the chance to seek out new comic shops that just might have that back issue I was missing. I was on a quest!

How did this change my life? My love of comics led me to send a submission to Dark Horse Comics, which led to me becoming their very first marketing intern and introduced me to my future husband and father of my children (16 years before we tied the knot). It also resulted in six incredible years in marketing and public relations at Things From Another World, the world’s best online and brick-and-mortar comic book retailer.

So there’s my secret comic book origin: what’s yours? Post about the comic that started it all for you!