St. Mark's Comics, a New York institution, is going out of business after almost 40 years of selling superhero stories to loyal customers. The shop, whose Brooklyn location went defunct in 2012, is closing the doors of its Manhattan branch in the East Village at the end of February.
“We’ve been astonished and amazed by the response that we have gotten and we are extremely gratified by all the nice things that all the nice people are saying,” Mitch Cutler of St. Marks tells SYFY WIRE. “We encourage everybody to come in and share a memory and shake hands and say goodbye … Let’s have a wake and not a funeral.”
The closing was confirmed on Twitter yesterday by the store's official Twitter account, which posted the following:
"Yes. After 36 years of serving the #EastVillage, world famous St. Mark's Comics will be closing at the end of February. Thanks for all your kind words and concern as word has gotten out. We will be starting our store-emptying #sale tomorrow morning @ 11AM. Stay tuned for more!"
Given that Twitter only allows so many characters, another post on Facebook went into more depth on the decision behind the closing:
"There are lots of obstacles to running a retail storefront in NYC; too many of them at once to fight, and after 36 pretty intense years, not enough left to fight them. We are forever grateful to our customers, who made it possible to pursue our passion for so long. To our families and friends, without whose patience and indulgence we could never do all the things required to run a retail business for 36 years. Most especially, to all the talented and dedicated staff, mostly now extended family, who contributed their time, expertise, ideas, and love to make this the very best shop it could be.
We'll see you soon to say goodbye and share a good memory.
Let's make this month a wake, not a funeral."
Opened in 1984 (a very fitting, Orwellian year), St. Mark's dealt in comics and collectibles, eventually becoming a staple of the Manhattan comics scene. In fact, the shop was featured in a Season 3 episode of HBO's Sex and the City. The show's main character, Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker), met a guy there, who, it turned out, was still living with his parents. It was also mentioned in Friends, as the place where a young Ross was once mugged after buying a comic.
"We're here through the end of February, running the sale to clean the place out and to make sure that we have settled any oustanding customer issues," Mitch adds.
(Sex and the City info via Curbed)