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Raleigh comic book store closing after 24 years

Posted February 4, 2011

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— Comic book fans around the North Carolina State University campus are saying goodbye to a landmark.

Capitol Comics has been a fixture at 3027 Hillsborough St. for 24 years, but the economy and changing tastes have hurt the long-running business, according to manager Russ Garwood.

“Sales have been dropping. I knew something would have to change sooner or later,” said Garwood.

The owners decided last fall to close the store and merge it with Capitol Comics' more successful spot on Glenwood Avenue. After 19 years as manager, Garwood is reaching the end of his comic book story.

“(Do you) know anybody looking for a full-time manager? I'm looking for a job,” he said.

As the comic book business changes, it’s becoming easier for readers to find bargains.

“Everybody talks about, ‘I could find it cheaper on Amazon.com, or I could find it cheaper on the Internet,’” Garwood said.

comic book Raleigh comic book store closing after 24 years

Another reason business is down at comic book stores is because yesterday's comic book reader is more likely to be today's video game player.

“The current generation coming up is going to be the smartest one there's ever been – until the electricity goes out,” Garwood said. “I feel so sorry for these kids. What are they going to do?”

As for what Garwood will do on his final day, he says “we’ll have to wait and see when I lock the door the last time."

Garwood said he thinks the store will close by the end of February. Until then, the Hillsborough Street location is offering steep discounts on comics and other merchandise.

5 Comments

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  • wralfan Feb 4, 6:41 p.m.

    I thought this place was closing in December. It's a shame they are closing but I chalk it up to conglomerates like Disney and Warner Bros. buying entertainment media and charging out the yazoo for products so nobody can afford it any more.

  • cinderjannie Feb 4, 6:34 p.m.

    Russ, are you interested in going through a large collection of old comic books and assessing values? You could probably get a lot of business that way, and I know of a job you might want if this is the case.

  • harmstrong4 Feb 4, 6:22 p.m.

    I started the Dragon's Lair in Fayetteville around 1986. Did great until the Corps deployed to the middle east. Sold out and went and got a job.

  • kennywalters Feb 4, 5:20 p.m.

    Honestly, I've been into Capitol before. These "steep" discounts were something they should've looked at giving on slow moving product before now. There also are other comic stores in the Triangle now that are in shopping centers with adequate parking. That also hurt Capitol I'm sure as their location wasn't really as great if you weren't an on campus student at NC State.

  • u stand corrected Feb 4, 4:38 p.m.

    Sad