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After 48 Years, Fat Jack’s Comicrypt, Philly’s Oldest Comic Book Store To Close Next Week; 70% Blow-Out Sale Going On Now!

Originally opening in 1976, Fat Jack’s Comicrypt is one of the oldest comic book stores in the United States. Now, on May 29th, they will close their doors for good; another victim of the pandemic.

I worked at the main store for a few years in the early nineties, during the speculation boom that later nearly destroyed the industry.  At the time, owner Mike Ferrero had four stores across the Philly area and New Jersey.  With the closing of the downtown Philadelphia store (they were evicted, after their lease had gone to month to month), only the Oaklawn, New Jersey store will remain.

Plans are to find a new physical location in the Philadelphia area if a reasonably priced location becomes available.  As the Sansom Street store closes, a piece of Philadelphia history and tradition goes with it.  Among the industry professionals that either shopped or worked there include Matt Wagner, the late Joe Matt, Michael Avon Oeming, Bryan J. Glass, Charles Burns, Mike Leeke, Bill Willingham, Eric Battle, and Reggie Byers.

When the pandemic shut down most of the country, Fat Jack’s lost many of it’s customers who were suddenly working from home, dealing with a loss of income. and the changing market in general.  Former Manager Eric Partridge organized a Go Fund Me campaign, which despite it bringing in half of it’s goal, ultimately didn’t accomplish much in the recovery of the business.

On Tuesday, May 28th, Fat Jack’s will be closing it’s Center City doors.  Until then, the store is running a 70% off everything but new books and will have extended hours on both Sunday and Monday (12 to 6 PM).  Help support the store by taking out you want list and picking up some amazing work at a discounted price.  Customers who have an interest in continuing their subscriptions by mail or having them moved to the New Jersey location (with a 25% discount), email [email protected]  to discuss arrangements.

As for the store itself, I can’t help but being both a bit sad and nostalgic.  I’m still in touch with several people I worked with thirty years ago and wish Mike the very best with finding a new location.  To all of the customers from my days at the store, you helped make Fat Jack’s what it was.

To Mike, Eric, Barbara, John, Mr. Mike, Warren, Contrell, Alex, Sam, Kyle, Blamken, Dennis, Jeff, Angelo, Jonathan, Brian, Sean, Cedric (Jabaloni), Nick, Russ, Dan, and anyone else I missed, you made the job better than it deserved to be.  To customers/characters who were part of the biology of the store including Stefan, Russ, Walter, Ernie, Ed, Cisco, No-Tape, Sydney, Marvin, Seth, Josh, CD Dave, Nick, and the hundreds of others who were passionate shoppers, collectors and overall, wonderful people.

Fat Jack’s Comicrypt (1976 – 2024)
Philadelphia’s Oldest and Best Comic Book Store
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