Comic Book Store Clerks of America, No. 13: New York City, NY

June 01, 2009 | 11:55 p.m.

They have no superpowers, but they are heroic: They are the store employees across America who sell comics and, like the guys in “High Fidelity,” bicker with one another all day long about the true treasures of the discount bin. They are the Comic Book Store Clerks of America, and we salute them.


It may be our world, but when it comes to comic books it’s Jim Hanley’s Universe. [4 W. 33rd Street, New York, NY 10001; (212) 268-7088] The store caters to the comic book connoisseur as well as a fair number of starving comics creators. Just ask Vito DelSante, 36: He’s a mild-mannered store manager by day and covert comic book writer by night. His comic book, FCHS, recounts his last year of high school and will hit the shelves this October. “We foster that kind of creativity here,” DelSante said.

What grown-up comic book could make it as a Saturday morning cartoon?

I think Sandman would be OK for kids. Although… Preacher would be great as a Saturday morning cartoon.

Which one of Captain Planet’s rings would you like to have?

The air ring so I can fly.

If you were a superhero, what would your catchy slogan be?

“Do I have to?” That probably would be close to something I would actually say.

Which comic book writer should pen your biography?

I’m actually kind of doing it right now, but Brian Michael Bendis might actually make my life funnier than it actually is. He’s written for “Ultimate Spider-Man” and “Powers,” and he wrote “Fortune and Glory,” which was his autobiography. It’s hysterical and fantastic.

What should J.J. Abrams touch with his awesomeness next?

After seeing “Star Trek,” I’m halfway willing to have him do “Star Wars.” You know, since George Lucas can’t do it right.

– Michelle Castillo


Photo: The elusive Vito DelSante; Courtesy of Vito DelSante

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