A little less than two weeks ago, I asked who remembered the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe. The usual suspects (minus Dave) replied.
Sorry it's taken me so long to get to the follow-up, BUT...
I asked that question as the lead-in to this one: I'm trying to figure out a color scheme/layout for a costume and I'd love to have those in front of me for inspiration. Does anybody know of an easily-browsable online equivalent of the Handbooks, or if even if the originals (and/or the updates) have been archived anywhere? Normally I'm not a fan of the practice of scanning and uploading comics, but I'll make an exception in this case. Not only do I have the Marvel Essentials reprints sitting on my bookshelf, but Sam and I bought two copies of the things when they first came out.
We justified that to Ma by telling her that we were buying one to read and one to file away, but truthfully, there's so much information in those books that neither of us wanted to have to wait for the other one to finish so we could dig in. Around the time they got almost done with the "S"'s we figured out that we could have just waited until two issues in the series were out, each bought one, and then swapped when we were done with our respective issues. We quickly realized, however, the two serious flaws in this plan. Flaw One, it would entail waiting two months to get a new issue instead of just one. Flaw Two, our only sources for comics in those days was the rack in the drugstore on Main Street and the rack in the Jr. Foods, and it was extremely rare to be able to find an issue from the previous month at the drugstore once the new issue was out. The Jr. Foods wasn't nearly as good about keeping their stock turned over, but for some reason they never carried the Handbooks.
Found via them being friends of my friends on Facebook, names of actual living humans that sound completely made-up --
Beth Western (my personal favorite)