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.
We mourned the closing of Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash in Westwood as much as we cried when Superman died for the first time, but luckily the store’s Jersey shore location [35 Broad St., Red Bank, N.J.; (352) 536-1488] is alive and kicking. If you’re ever in town and want to see the best that Jersey has to offer, talk to Michael Zapcic, 41, who has manned the tills for the last nine years. And, yes, Zapcic admits that Jay is just the same lovable goofball with hilarious “anecdotes”: “He’s not acting. No one could be that good.”
What comic book have you always wanted to read but never had time?
Oh, I’m looking at it right now. “The Tomb of Dracula“: I’ve always wanted to sit down and read the entire run. It’s a Marvel comic from the ’70s. There’s just so many comics that I’d have to go back and start digging through to find them all.
Which Hollywood adaptation of a comic book put a bee in your bonnet?
Which Hollywood comics adaptation popped your popcorn?
Are you feeling it for “X-Men Origins: Wolverine”?
Do you mean what do I think of the hype? It’s another one of those cases where they chuck 5 pounds of spaghetti against the wall and see what sticks.
Dig deep: Who is your favorite villain in comics?
This goes back: I’d have to say the Golden Glider. She was Captain Cold’s sister, and she would bedevil The Flash. It was back on the ’70s, and I had a crush on Dorothy Hamill, and Golden Glider was an ice-skater.
You are trapped in an alley with a masked bad guy coming at you. Which Marvel hero do you want at your side?
I’d want to partner with the chick from “Alias.” She curses almost as much as me, and win or lose you’re going out to a bar afterward.
– Michelle Castillo
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Photo: Michael Zapcic
UPDATE: An earlier version of this post had the store’s hometown wrong.