I recently figured out that the earliest comic book I can remember owning when it was first published is Daredevil #72, which went on sale around November 1970. I was somewhat surprised to realize that this means I was only eight years old when I first started reading comics books. This also means that my 48th birthday on June 19th, 2010, marked 40 years that I have been reading (and later studying, writing about, and even assisting in the creation of) comic books. In recognition of this anniversary, I have created a retrospective of my life told through the comic books I have read. In addition to my personal history, this retrospective includes significant events in the history of the comic book industry, and events in world history as they have been reflected in comic books.
I have divided my life into periods modeled after the historical eras of the comic book industry: Golden Age (1938-late 1940s), Silver Age (1956-circa 1970), Bronze Age (early 1970s to mid 1980s) and Modern Age (mid 1980s to present). Although I use the same names, my “Ages” reflect personal rites of passage or milestones in my own life. I have added a “Post-Modern Age” to cover my most recent years as a comic book reader/scholar/contributor.
My original intention was to post all five parts detailing my personal comic book ages at the same time, but I underestimated the labor intensiveness of this project. Therefore, I’m posting each part as I complete it.