Hi De Ho Comics in Santa Monica occupies a huge space. And they seem to have a lot of variety, from back issues, to hardcover trade volumes and paperbacks. Addtionally, they stock comic-related/pop-culture magazines, and some toys as well.
But it looks like Magic: The Gathering is a big part of their business, as the clerk was playing it with a bunch of teenagers when i dropped in. I did find a hardbound book I was looking for, but only by chance, as the back half of the store looks like it was ransacked, and even on the shelves, nothing was searchable by any kind of index I could decipher. It’s literally a mess, with comics lying on the floor, wooden crates everywhere, and comic short boxes strewn about. I suspect there are comics I’d want here, but I’d have to spend half a day to sort through the chaos. From appearances, I got the impression that the owner(s) may have given up on organizing the store.
It led me to wonder if the owner(s) started out all eager and excited, and when things didn’t take off like they hoped, they became discouraged and lost interest, instead of doubling down and trying something new or innovative.
Or they discovered a solid revenue stream with Magic cards, leaving the comics side of the business to wither.
That said, I’m not necessarily blaming them; I understand it’s a harsh world out there for a small business, and you have do what you think is right to survive; I will give the owner(s) the benefit of the doubt and assume they assessed today’s comic book marketplace, and this store’s interior is the result of their findings. It’s probably a great place if you’re a Magic: The Gathering player.
In other hands, or with an additional hand or two, this could become a premier comic book store. The location is great, with plenty of pedestrian traffic, in a great part of town, not far from the more touristy areas. But it would take some work to get there, and ultimately, it may not be worth it.