It's no surprise that the board also routinely plays host to another of the universal comic-book forum threads, the How To Get Your Girl Into Comics thread. If, like me, you're foolish enough to spend any time in comics fandom at all, you know the thread: one of the regulars has acquired a girlfriend or wife, but he's not content. He can't help thinking how great it would be if he could indoctrinate her into his favorite hobby and indulge in both of his passions at once, like that episode of "Seinfeld" where George tries to eat, screw, and watch TV at the same time. But girls hate comics! Obviously, the solution is to find that one magical uterus-friendly comic that all humans of the female persuasion are genetically programmed to love. And who better to locate the Bestest Comic for Girls than a bunch of nerdy men on the Internet?
The thread currently running on the Byrne board is notable only because it's such a perfect, Platonic example of the genre. It's like a template for all Get Your Girl Into Comics threads on all comic-book forums for all eternity. It's got every one of the essential elements:
1. Sandman, Strangers in Paradise, Fables, and True Story Swear To God are recommended over and over and over. And over.
2. Manga isn't so much as mentioned.
3. Neither are comic strips. Or webcomics, unless you count the print collections of Girl Genius.
4. "Romance" is repeatedly cited as something all women adore. The "romance comics" recommended are frequently just superhero comics that include a love interest, like Frank Miller's run on Daredevil. (That sound you hear is Lea Hernandez's head exploding at the notion of Frank Miller as the perfect female-friendly cartoonist.)
5. Everyone with a girlfriend or wife weighs in, even though none of their girlfriends or wives like comics. Mostly, they just want everyone to know they're not single, either.
6. Someone uses the phrase "chicks dig it," possibly without irony.
And, most essentially...
7. The thread is now two pages long, and no one has thought to ask about the tastes of the woman in question.
You know, like what kind of books or movies or TV shows or off-Broadway musicals she enjoys. Like whether she actually likes romance, or if she's more into mysteries or slapstick comedy or The Da Vinci Code. On the contrary, everyone's been blissfully ignoring what little information the original poster provided. He said only that his wife found Jeff Smith's new Captain Marvel comic too disturbing (huh?), and people are cheerfully recommending that he hand her Hellboy and The Walking Dead.
Basically, you read the John Byrne forum so that you never have to read another comic-book forum ever again. It's all there, pure and uncut.