Comic Store Reviews

In my searches for rare and unknown Hulk collectibles I have visited many different stores. I have graded each store based on items they stock (comics or collectibles), ease of visit (parking, travel, etc), and overall store presentation. These are my own opinions based on that particular visit. I hope these help any who plan to visit these stores. For the time being these are restricted to my living area which happens to be the city of Chicago and the surrounding suburbs. I will include the reviews of other people for other areas here as well.

If you live in Connecticut, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, or New York click here for a fellow bloggers reviews. 

If you live in Ohio or the surrounding area click here.

G-Mart / 2641 N Kedzie Ave Chicago, IL

A small store specializing in an impressive size stock room full of back issue comics. A fair variety of newer comics. Collectibles were present but sparse. Most of the collectibles revolved around DC characters. Though there was some Marvel, Doctor Who, and Adventure Time. Staff was friendly.  Location included a couch by the window to read comics and to view a big screen TV which at the time was playing ‘Big Bang Theory’. Paid parking was across the street and free on Sundays.

  • Comics 9/10
  • Collectibles 4/10
  • Ease of Visit 9/10
  • Overall 6/10

Challengers Comics / 1845 N Western Ave Chicago, IL

This store had a big front window making it hard to miss. This is unusual for a comic store this deep in the city.  The interior was very clean and sharp. The staff wore shirts and ties. White walls and red plush chairs for reading in. Tons of comics on large shelves. Some signed artwork by local artists. Not much in terms of collectibles. A small kiddy corner in a separate room housed what ever collectibles they had. Most of the stuff was pretty standard. Things you could find just about anywhere. Mostly Marvel toys, some DC busts, and even some Angry Birds toys. The real big difference is that this establishment has a room for conducting an art gallery for comic artists. I did not see this room and presume they only make it available for shows. Parking was on the street and somewhat difficult to find. Free on Sundays.

  • Comics 8/10
  • Collectibles 3/10
  • Ease of Visit 6/10
  • Overall 7/10

Brainstorm Comics / 1579 N Milwaukee Ave, Ste 321, Chicago, IL

Good luck finding this one. This store is a great place to visit if you live in the area, but good luck getting to it by driving. Parking was on the street and difficult to find. Once I was able to park it took me twenty minutes to find the place. It’s not on street level with its own dedicated sign. You have to find the Flat Iron building. Only then will you see a tiny sign indicating Brainstorm Comics. You then can take an elevator or the stairs up to the third floor. At the end of the hall is a door leading to a studio apartment sized store. Inside are a few racks of comics. A handful of collectible items. Some board and card games. And finally a fair sized video rental section. The staff was very helpful and friendly. I would equate this location to being a sort of general store (for nerds) in the wild west. A little bit of everything and serves a basic purpose. On the way up I walked by numerous art studios. I think this store serves students who need some entertainment in-between working on graduate school art projects.  Which isn’t a bad thing. This store sold some artist’s works. It was interesting to see a store devoted to creativity smack dab in the center of such a creative community. That being said, doesn’t change how hard it was to find and the lack of items worth buying.

  • Comics 5/10
  • Collectibles 4/10
  • Ease of Visit 2/10
  • Overall 4/10

Chicago Comics / 3244 N Clark St Chicago, IL

This store is a gem. Its front window is fair size but nothing that pops out and grabs you. However once you go inside it all changes. The store is rather deep and wide. Tons of comics and other various books! Even though I did not find any Hulk items…the amount of unusual collectibles here were surprising. Toys from movies, video games, and comics abounded. Even some old-timey robot toys. The decorations in here are what really catch your eye. Statues covered in comic strips. A huge devils head over the door. I definitely recommend at least one visit here. Parking was easy on the day I went, but if conditions were different I am sure it would be quite difficult to get to. Parking was on the street.

  • Comics 8/10
  • Collectibles 8/10
  • Ease of Visit 5/10
  • Overall 9/10

Reel Art Collectibles / 6727 W Stanley Berwyn, IL

Excellent choice for anyone looking to locate older collectibles. There products range from Godzilla, Marvel, Aliens, Ninja Turtles, Doctor Who, and old movie memorabilia. This also includes old movie posters, VHS tapes of movies, and a small selection of comics and vinyl records. They also have a fair selection of movie statues and busts. The owner was very friendly. Parking was on the street and easy to find. I highly recommend this store for anyone looking for toys from their childhood or any movie memorabilia. In addition there is a store located next to it that specializes in Horror and Sci-Fi collectibles. These two stores compliment each other very well. A nice little visit. Well worth the trip!

  • Comics 3/10
  • Collectibles 9/10
  • Ease of Visit 8/10
  • Overall 9/10

One Stop Comics / 111 S Ridgeland Ave Oak Park, IL

At first glance this shop seemed like something featured on an episode of ‘Hoarders’. However, upon further inspection this shop became a gold mine. The shop is positively PACKED with comics and collectibles…but mostly comics. Stacks and stacks of comics mixed in with numerous toys and figures.  I myself have discovered a number of Hulk items, some of which I have purchased. The owner, Rick, is incredibly friendly and helpful. He personally helped me find what I was looking for. I will definitely be returning. Located between the city and the suburbs this location is the place to be for comic geeks.

  • Comics 9/10
  • Collectibles 7.5/10
  • Ease of Visit 9/10
  • Overall 9/10

Update: I visited the One Stop Comics in Chicago on Belmont Ave. The store was packed with comics and mostly sports figures. It is clear this store is maintained by the same people. The shop looks like it should be featured on an episode of Hoarders. However I must admit this store is housing some hidden gems. If you collect comics or sports action figures this is the place to go. Otherwise I suggest you stick to visiting the Oak Park location. Overall this location was a 5/10.

KaPow!! Collectibles / 711 W Belmont Ave Chicago, IL 60657 

This shop is a treasure trove of new and vintage toys. Packed from floor to ceiling just about any toy can be found for any topic. Toys range from the early 80’s to current times. Transformers, Marvel, DC, McFarlane, GI Joe, TV shows, movies, and much much more. A highly recommended spot for people who collect toys. This store had some comics but not many. Most of the figures are loose but some are still complete in original packaging. The owner, Romeo, is extremely knowledgeable and friendly. His selection of Hulk items was quite impressive in comparison to other shops. An overall enjoyable experience. Be sure to stop in and take a trip down memory lane.

  • Comics 1/10
  • Collectibles 9/10
  • Ease of Visit 4/10
  • Overall 9/10

Dreamland Comics / 1455 W Schaumburg Rd, Schaumburg, IL 60194

This store is another nice little unassuming place to visit. The storefront doesn’t seem like much. But inside are a fair amount of comics and a unique assortment of collectible action figures. You can find comics and toys ranging from Aliens, Godzilla, Kick Ass to Adventure Time. The store also contains many board and card games. However its most unique stock is it’s assortment of geeky hoodies. I could find a hoodie for Adventure Time, Marvel, and even Big Bang Theory. The staff is very friendly and helpful as well. Definitely worth a visit if your in the area.

Update: There is also a Dreamland Comics 2 in Libertyville, IL. This shop is about the same size but doesn’t have nearly the same selection of collectibles. Comics mostly and games. Unless you’re this far north I suggest you stick with the one in Schaumburg.

  • Comics 7/10
  • Collectibles 6/10
  • Ease of Visit 10/10
  • Overall 8/10

Keith’s Komix / 528 S Roselle Rd. ,Schaumburg, IL 60193

Keith’s Komix specializes in numerous comics and board/card games. The store was split almost down the middle to accommodate both. However the place does have its fair share of collectibles and toys. A large collection of statues and busts adorn it’s walls. The shop owner Keith is very friendly and was more then happy to help me. I even decided to take a chance with a new game and he cut me a great deal on some additional pieces to make it more enjoyable. So he has easily won my business for the future. His range of items may have been limited but he had a few things I have never found anywhere. Worth checking out if you have time. Plus the pizza place next door adds to the visit.

  • Comics 3/10
  • Collectibles 5/10
  • Ease of Visit 10/10
  • Overall 7/10

Quake Collectibles / 17 W Weathersfield Way, Schaumburg, IL 60193

Much like Kapow Collectibles this location deals in collecting old and new toys. This store is packed floor to ceiling with toys, action figures, and playsets all the way back from the 80’s to today. Most, if not all, of these items are used. In other words played with. However there are a fair amount of still packaged items. Admittedly I feel Kapow had a more focused unique assortment of items. Quake tends to have anything and everything. This includes lots of undesirable items in poor shape. I would say a good quarter of the store is filled with happy meal toys. But to be fair the prices are quite low. If your out looking for older toys this is the place for you.

  • Comics 1/10
  • Collectibles 9/10
  • Ease of Visit 10/10
  • Overall 8/10

Chimera Comics / Oak Lawn and La Grange, IL

Both these stores are related and they definitely look it. Both are decently located lending themselves to accessible parking. They stock the typical stuff. Mostly newer comics interspersed with action figures and some collectibles. Nothing out of the ordinary or mind blowing. They do have some nice geek focused decorations such as comic frames and wall decals. Otherwise not much. Just a couple nice local comic shops for their respective towns.

  • Comics 5/10
  • Collectibles 6/10
  • Ease of Visit 9/10
  • Overall 5/10

Comix Revolution / 115 W Central Ave, Mt. Prospect, IL

This store surprised me. I don’t know what I expected but I found there selection of comics and collectibles unique. I saw some things I haven’t seen anywhere else. The staff was very friendly as well. They stocked plenty of new and some older comics. Collectibles ranged from The Simpsons to Adventure Time and Marvel. They also had decorations and clothing. I was very pleased with my visit and I recommend it to you if you happen to pass through.

  • Comics 5/10
  • Collectibles 7/10
  • Ease of Visit 9/10
  • Overall 7/10

Update: Comix Revolution has another shop located in Evanston. This store was more comic focused then the store in Mt. Prospect. They did have a fair selection of unique collectibles and items. I was fortunate to find a couple things I wanted. Parking was a bit more difficult but overall a positive experience. I also give it a 7/10.

 

More to Come….

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