By Stephen A. Geppi
Maggie Thompson has just about always been a strong supporter of great comics, their creators and their collectors. She is a true fan in the best sense of the word.
Not only does she love comics – and many other forms of popular culture – she loves them in a way that compels her to do the best possible job of explaining what they are and why they’re so wonderful.
Over the years she’s written about so many different facets of the hobby that it’s almost impossible to take it all in. She has covered everything from reviews of individual comic book issues to the bodies of work by respected writers and artists, and from different ways retailers became successful to different manners in which people collected. She’s done news and she’s done opinion, but she’s always approached all of these areas with a magnificent energy and a genuine sense of optimism for what comics can be.
Even when covering the often spirited and sometimes contentious competition between the various distributors in the 1980s and 1990s, she displayed an even-handed, big picture approach. Many times she transcended the background noise to get to the heart of the matter, something that can be said about so much of her work.
Perhaps the greatest thing about Maggie, though, is how infectious her enthusiasm really is. The opportunity to show her a special bit of history – and to watch her immediately put it into context – is something every serious collector should experience. Once you’ve experienced it, you can’t help but want to experience it again and again.
Of the many discussions we’ve had over the years, a personal favorite of mine was the time I got to show her the vault in my office in Diamond Comic Distributors’ old Timonium, Maryland headquarters. I got to show her the two bound volumes of art that were done for William Randolph Hearst by the many different, famous cartoonists that worked for him. It’s not often that any of us get to see Maggie Thompson in awe.
I’m so glad that the fantastic collection she and Don put together was awarded a pedigree status, because if there’s ever been a pedigree member of and contributor to fandom, it’s my friend Maggie Thompson.
Steve Geppi is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Diamond Comic Distributors and the Founder of Geppi’s Entertainment Museum.