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Thank You Comics calls it quits in Highland Park

Thank You Comics is closing at the end of the month | Nathan Solis

Thank You Comics is closing at the end of the month | Nathan Solis

By NATHAN SOLIS

Storefront ReportHIGHLAND PARK — Thank You Comics will be closing shop at the end of February after opening up on York Boulevard more than 2-1/2 years ago. The final day for new comics will be Wednesday, February 25, according to an email the comic shop sent out Wednesday.

“We understand that finding a local comic shop that fits your needs can be difficult and would like to offer you the very same subscription services at our sister-store, The Secret Headquarters, in Silver Lake.”

Co-owners David Pifer and David Ritchie opened 1,000-square-foot Thank You Comics in 2012 on the bustling York Boulevard, with its boutique appeal, brightly colored walls and stock of comics, books and graphic novels. The owners were hoping to fill in an underserved comic book market in Northeast L.A.

The owners did not say why they were closing the Highland Park store.

Nathan Solis is a Highland Park resident who writes about and photographs the L.A. music scene. You can find more of Solis’ stories, reviews and photos at Avenue Meander.

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13 comments

  1. They closed the store due to the pending rent increase. Sad to see this one going down.

  2. Rents on this block have skyrocketed and unjustifiably so. A friend of mine own a small food place and his landlord wants to kick rent up from $3000/month to $3500 per month. The roof still leaks. The building is still a dump. They just want more money for nothing. This is when the real snakes and grease bags show up and the chain stores start opening to vacuum money up and send it to Wall Street.

    • C’mon ubrayj02, Sing along!

      Stand up, damned of the Earth
      Stand up, prisoners of starvation
      Reason thunders in its volcano
      This is the eruption of the end.
      Of the past let us make a clean slate
      Enslaved masses, stand up, stand up.
      The world is about to change its foundation
      We are nothing, let us be all.
      This is the final struggle
      Let us group together, and tomorrow
      The Internationale
      Will be the human race. 😐

  3. I’m the landlord. Well, one of three people who own the building.

    Their rent was not going up. There was an automatic 3% increase if they stayed past their initial 3 year lease. We were very proud and happy to have them as tenants. They did a great, stylish buildout but at the end of their lease simply chose not to renew.

    One of the things that makes this neighborhood great is the businesses and businesspeople, including the landlords, who care about quality of life and keeping the neighborhood exciting. Thank You was exactly the right fit for the space and we are bummed they are moving.

    We don’t need these weird, political, mud-slinging shitstorms of comments every time a business relocates or closes. They have three other stores. Apparently they didn’t want to continue this one. That’s all.

    Anyone knows a great tenant who is looking for a space in the area, have them call me.

    • Thanks for setting me straight. My anxiety about commercial rents is very high. Glad to see that you’re a sane person. Wish I could say the same thing about myself when it comes to this issue. I’ll calm down now. Thanks again for the info.

  4. I think that ubrayj02’s comments about what’s going on in the neighborhood make sense for anyone who has been following the changes taking place… rents are skyrocketing and the cost of living is beginning to rise exponentially, for both business owners and customers/residents who are subsidizing the ‘return on investment’ and ‘realization of projected market rents’ by a new wave of investors (and some longer term owners cashing in on the wave), who generally don’t give a shit about anyone but themselves and their own profits. Case in point: http://www.theeastsiderla.com/2015/01/new-owner-focusing-on-finding-new-tenants-for-franks-highland-park-camera-building/ . Do they have every legal right to be doing this? Of course. Does that make it a good thing for the neighborhood? I would argue that’s a resounding NO. Despite the appealing notion of fixing up what is presently a vacant eyesore, such high rental prices would have an adverse impact on the neighborhood. ‘Development’ and ‘Investment’ are not inherently good… just because someone with money comes into an area doesn’t mean that their money is actually benefitting the neighborhood in the long view, when all factors are considered.

    The key point is that the intensely speculative nature of property investment in Highland Park is having a destabilizing effect on the ground in this community. Every time another building sells for millions it’s the seller who cashes out, and dramatically increased ‘market’ rents are a critical part of the financial calculation for the new owners. The kind of rents that crush mom and pop operations and kill local small businesses of all sorts, in favor more well funded operations and corporate models. Again, WE are the ones who subsidize this, in the form of higher rents paid, higher prices for products, and higher costs of living. It’s really another manifestation of the income inequality issue; we all pay more so a very few (who are already well off) can enjoy the desired returns on their speculative investments.

    That said, the case of Thank You Comics shows that there are always exceptions and that drawing quick and convenient conclusions based on general assumptions is never a good idea 🙂 Glad to hear that the landlord in this case seems more engaged and has a greater depth of perspective than is often the case. If I’m not mistaken, I believe that this particular building sold several years ago (before the commercial boom) at a much lower price point than we’re currently seeing.

  5. “the case of Thank You Comics shows that there are always exceptions and that drawing quick and convenient conclusions based on general assumptions is never a good idea”

    “a new wave of investors (and some longer term owners cashing in on the wave), who generally don’t give a shit about anyone but themselves and their own profits.”

    Hmmm, please be coherent, especially if you expect business and property owners to function as social workers and charitable organizations. Thanks.

  6. Thank You was a fantastic comic shop. Sad to see it go. A bit different vibe, but Comics VS Toys on Eagle Rock Blvd is a great place to get your comic fix. Ace, who owns the store, is a great guy and really takes care of his characters.

  7. See ya sucka !!!

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