By Joey Payton
If you picture the comic book guy from the Simpson’s when you think of a local comic store, then Northern Virginia’s Comic Logic Books & Artwork will reshape your paradigm of what a community comic book shop should be.
“I think a lot of people have in their minds that comic book stores are like the one in the Simpson’s with a snooty comic book guy behind the counter,” said Kristin Unger, life-long comic book enthusiast and Comic Logic associate.
But that image is far from the Comic Logic scene.
Put at ease by a nostalgic sci-fi tune (imagine the Star Trek theme song), there are familiar figurines of your childhood heroes dispersed throughout, vibrant covers lining the walls and elated faces of the Comic Logic staff assisting customers.
A place for Nerds
“Instead of a sports bar, this is like a nerd bar,” said Rich Gollhofer, one of the shop’s co-owners and comic aficionado. “It’s a safe space for nerds.”
Gollhofer, whose love for comics began during his childhood when he would read his dad’s hand-me-down DC and Marvel comics, never saw comics as anything other than another way to consume media, he said.
“I was never taught that comics were less than books. They’re all on the same level. I think you get a bit of the best of best worlds with comics,” said Gollhofer. “You can put prose in comics, but also with the art, you have that same aspect that’s in film and television where you can tell more with a picture sometimes than with words.”
If you don’t do comics, give Gollhofer and Unger a chance and they’ll make a comic lover out of you.
“I think one of things we’ve been successful with is converting people who don’t read comics into comic book readers,” said Unger.
If you think comics are stupid, then you’ll be singing another tune once they get the epic sci-fi fantasy, Saga, into your hands.
A place for Creators
Earlier this month Comic Logic celebrated its second birthday, but it attributes its success to its customers and local creators.
“A sense of community is what we’re trying to build. It’s only through their support that we get to exist,” said Gollhofer.
Comic Logic’s loyalty to its local writers and artists is evident in the significant amount of space allocated their original artwork on the walls and shelves.
“The original art that you see on the wall is from local artists. The local writers on the shelf include a kid that’s still in high school. That’s part of the community that we are trying to build and maintain,” said Gollhofer.
This year the new shop has the distinction of being one of the sponsors for NOVA CON 2017 in Tysons Corner, Va., July 28 – 30. Even at this huge event, Comic Logic plans to include some of its local artists.
“We’re curating local creators and artists to come in and show off their wears.”
Some of the notable creators that will be featured at NOVA CON include Tyrone Selby, creator and writer of Elements of Light, and gamer and costume designer extraordinaire, Misty the “Imperial Grrrl,” so check them out.
A place for Community
There’s something to buy and something to do for everyone at Comic Logic.
Whether you’re in the market for a crisp and glossy paperback or looking to socialize with friendly comic lovers, your trip to this blossoming comic store will be well-served.
Place: Comic Logic Books & Artwork in Ashburn, Va.
General theme: Comic book themed with something for kids through adults. And did you know they have a theme song called “Superior” by Burn the Ballroom?
Hours: Monday-Tuesday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Wednesday-Saturday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (And they’re open most federal holidays, too!)
A Brief History: Co-founded & owned by NOVA comic enthusiasts in April 2015
Food/Drink: No, not usually, but if you come to ‘Drink and Draw’ nights I hear it totally makes-up for it.
Wifi: Nope, because you should be reading comics, anyway
Appointment necessary: None needed. Everyone is welcome.
If this place were band: Wintergatan – Marble Machine