About Who Watches the Watchers

"I am... the Watcher! I watch countless of differet universes, though never interfere."
~ Uatu, the Watcher


Discussion about your favourite Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe (OHOTMU) issues and more.

Moderator: Mod (WWtW)

Andy E. Nystrom
Moderator / Writer
Moderator / Writer
Posts: 2577
Joined: Tue Jan 07, 2014 4:32 am

About Who Watches the Watchers

Postby Andy E. Nystrom » Thu Jan 21, 2016 11:24 pm

Note to anyone joining us for the first time at Capes (Optional): This was written for our previous host site, CxPulp and originally posted 11-10-2013, 08:56 AM.

While we were on CxPulp, site owner Craig Reade asked me to create a thread to explain this section of that site, so here goes (new people feel free to ask new questions and regulars feel free to suggest modifications). This will continue to be fine-tuned from time to time.



What is Who Watches the Watchers?

    Who Watches the Watchers, originating in Comixfan, and then moving to CxPulp, is primarily for discussion of the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe (OHOTMU) and similar reference material such as Files books and Index books. People who wrote the 2004-2011 run and who still do profiles for other books often chime in. It appears to have started in 2004 (most current participants joined later), migrated from Comixfan to CxPulp in November 2013, then migrated once again from CxPulp to Capes (Optional) in January 2016.

What is the focus of Who Watches the Watchers discussion?

    Mainly the Marvel Megaverse, that is stories set in the core Marvel Universe (its reality designation of 616 is often used as shorthand) as well as parallel universes and other dimensions related to the core Marvel Universe in some fashion.

    There are some threads of a broader scope (Omniverse Map, Non-Marvel Handbooks) as well as threads devoted to comparable reference works (Who’s Who/Secret Files, Invincible Universe, Dark Tower) but those are the exception and not the rule.

What is the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe?

    OHOTMU is profiles of characters, teams and other aspects of the Marvel Megaverse as published by Marvel itself.

What is the difference between a Handbook and a Files book?

    A Handbook is written from the perspective or someone in the real world. Files books tend to have fewer categories and profiles are narrated by characters in the Marvel Universe.

What are some of the key threads?

    The Master List catalogues all the characters, teams, etc. profiled in works published by Marvel. The Sightings thread is similar, only it’s for profiles found somewhere (usually at the back) of otherwise non-Handbook comics. Things People Keep Getting Wrong is for debunking misconceptions about Marvel concepts. The Q&A thread is for general questions. Non-Marvel Handbooks is for catalogue all reference works not published by Marvel, as well as any off topic reference works published by Marvel (see below). The Wish List is for people to request certain characters, teams etc be profiled; it’s had less activity now that the Handbooks are more sporadic but traffic tends to pick up when new Handbooks are announcement, less so Guidebooks devoted to Marvel’s movie continuity.

Can I talk about non-Marvel Megaverse stuff?

    For most threads the default is the Marvel Megaverse. There are some exceptions noted above, and as with any conversation sometimes there will be digressions. But don’t, for example, start a new conversation in Things People Keep Getting Wrong about how Superman’s vulnerability to magic is often misunderstood.

Are licensed properties on topic?

    Depends on the property. Rom, Micronauts, and Team America (the toys, not the movie made by the South Park people) are an integral part of the Marvel Megaverse. Conan (and thus his Handbook) and Godzilla are part of the Marvel Megaverse in work published by Marvel but not elsewhere. GI Joe is considered off topic and so is Transformers (though it appears from their earliest issues that they were originally intended to be set in the 616 universe); therefore both of their Handbooks are off topic, but can be discussed in the Non-Marvel Handbooks thread. Sectaurs are probably off topic but no one’s been clamouring to talk about them anyway. Crystar is often perceived as a licensed character but is actually owned by Marvel and therefore entirely on topic.

What about Marvel Encyclopedias?

    There was a six volume set published by Marvel circa 2003. Those are on topic for the most part, but the Hulk volume isn’t really an encyclopedia and tends to be regarded as that drunken uncle everyone tries to pretend doesn’t exist.

    Encyclopedias and similar reference works published by other companies such as DK instead of Marvel, even if they’re promoted as official, tend not to be fact checked to the same degree and are thus downplayed here except in the Non-Marvel Handbooks thread. At one point they were going to be added to the Master List but that never happened at the time and would now be considered off topic for that list.

Capes (Optional) already has a Marvel Comics section. Why is this separate?

    Comixfan was set up differently than CX Pulp and Capes (Optional) and had a few sections devoted to creators. Who Watches the Watchers, which allowed fans to interact with the OHOTMU writers proved to be the most popular of these and evolved into a community within a community. When the move to CxPulp was announced, regular visitors to Who Watches the Watchers wanted to preserve what made that section unique; this has continued to Capes (Optional).

Why do most of the threads appear to have been started by Capes (Optional)?

    First off you have to coinsider the previous move. The Comixfan set-up was considered to be too unstable to move over directly, so we had to use text-based archives to move everything over and reformat the threads. A couple of people simply had more time to do this. So for threads started prior to November 2013, the actual thread starter is usually the person identified at the top of the old text (but see next point). Then, when we moved to Capes (Optional) and everything had to be reformatted once again, the generic Capes (Optional) made sense to be designated the “thread starter” of the older text.

Some of the older material seems a bit fragmented. Why is that?

    A few years ago Comixfan crashed and was then moved. Some threads survived entirely intact, some threads were lost entirely (e.g. the Anita Blake threads) and some threads were only partly salvageable. In the latter case we’ve migrated over what we can.

Is Marvel considered superior to other companies by Who Watches the Watchers?

    Not necessarily, though some individual users may think so. It’s just that Marvel has published more Handbooks in house than any other company and many of the people who wrote the most recent Handbooks made themselves available. If Robert Greenberger (who wrote many of the earlier Who’s Who books and was slated a few years back to write a revival) were to suddenly start posting, we’d undoubtedly make room for more DC-related threads.

Can I start my own thread?

    Sure, but make sure it’s relevant and not covered elsewhere. Most general questions can be asked in the Q&A thread and all the Handbooks and Index books 2004-on have their own threads, as do most of the Files books. You can also do a keyword search to try to find a relevant thread. Threads that are too general may at the Moderators' discretion be folded into the General Q&A thread.

How seriously do people take things here?

    Depends on how you look at it. We tend to be pretty obsessed with trivia and minutiae related to the Marvel Megaverse. However we also tend not to take ourselves too seriously and while we disagree from time to time, actual flamewars are pretty much unheard of here. We’re aware that these are all fictional constructs.

Was everything been moved over from Comixfan to CxPulp?

    Unless we've overlooked something, everything that wasn't previously lost has been moved over. A few threads were merged with General Q&A prior to or after the move, and a few inappropriate threads such as Fresh Checked Dumps were deleted well before the move.

Has everything been moved over from CxPulp to Capes (Optional)?

    As far as we know, yes.

I have reference books that fit into the above categories that I'm trying to unload. Can I sell them here?

    Unfortunately no. In a world without scammers we'd definitely allow that. Unfortunately that's not the world we live in and we can't risk anyone getting scammed by someone, no matter how genuine they may seem.

Who if I have any more questions about Who Watches the Watchers itself, as opposed to the OHOTMU etc?

    Ask them here. We may add your question to the first post if we feel it’s of general interest.
Andy E. Nystrom

Moderator, mainly Who Watches the Watchers
http://www.capesoptional.com/Forum/viewforum.php?f=67

My blog
http://saneinsanities.blogspot.ca

My photostream
https://www.flickr.com/photos/24917258@N05
Capes (Optional)
Publisher
Publisher
Posts: 791
Joined: Sat Feb 01, 2014 7:06 pm

About Who Watches the Watchers

Postby Capes (Optional) » Fri Jan 22, 2016 6:31 pm

Historical text from CxPulp:

zuckyd1 wrote:11-10-2013, 01:00 PM

Looks great!


Andy E. Nystrom wrote:11-10-2013, 02:21 PM

zuckyd1 wrote:Looks great!


Thx. Will probably modify that one question to say that it looks like one or two people started the threads since you helped quite a bit with that as well.


Andy E. Nystrom wrote:11-13-2013, 08:32 PM

A couple of the questions tweaked.


Andy E. Nystrom wrote:01-11-2014, 07:23 PM

I've updated Can I start my own thread? and Has everything been moved over from Comixfan?


ToddCam wrote:09-08-2014, 12:54 PM

Hooray! I found you!


mal32 wrote:09-09-2014, 08:07 AM

ToddCam wrote:Hooray! I found you!


Ciao from an Italian member


Andy E. Nystrom wrote:09-12-2014, 06:07 AM

ToddCam wrote:Hooray! I found you!


Welcome back! I only know about the switchover myself less than a week before it happened so unless you happened to check the site during that week it got announced, you either had to hope someone knew your regular e-mail or try a search engine. We're still missing a few regulars so you might not prove to be the last returnee.


Blue_Shield wrote:09-13-2014, 10:35 AM

Just found out about new location of Who Watches.


ToddCam wrote:09-14-2014, 08:53 PM

Thanks Andy and mal. Two years ago (I think) when Comixfan vanished I was sad to see this place go, and was most crushed by the Watchers board's apparent death. With the (hopefully temporary) end of the Handbooks, I kind of stopped collecting comics all around, which admittedly is kind of strange given the handbooks and indexes were "just" reference material for those same comics. So, any hope for new handbooks?


Andy E. Nystrom wrote:09-15-2014, 06:01 PM

ToddCam wrote:Thanks Andy and mal. Two years ago (I think) when Comixfan vanished I was sad to see this place go, and was most crushed by the Watchers board's apparent death. With the (hopefully temporary) end of the Handbooks, I kind of stopped collecting comics all around, which admittedly is kind of strange given the handbooks and indexes were "just" reference material for those same comics. So, any hope for new handbooks?


It's actually been less than a year, though Comixfan did move a few years before that (from .com to .net or something like that) due to a crash. So the reason why the vast majority of threads here have a start date of November 2013 is because that's when the nightmare job of moving every thread here one by one happened. I'm glad it happened in the winter when people are often more free. We started moving threads the day after the old site closed down so we were never really gone, though, we did clog up the Recent Activity section of this site for a few weeks. :)


mal32 wrote:09-18-2014, 10:11 AM

ToddCam wrote:Thanks Andy and mal. Two years ago (I think) when Comixfan vanished I was sad to see this place go, and was most crushed by the Watchers board's apparent death. With the (hopefully temporary) end of the Handbooks, I kind of stopped collecting comics all around, which admittedly is kind of strange given the handbooks and indexes were "just" reference material for those same comics. So, any hope for new handbooks?


I did less work than Andy but I am happy to have this forum alive!!!
I tried, also, to help people to find this place by updating the link in the wikipedia article about OHOTMU: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Official_H ... rnal_links


zuckyd1 wrote:09-18-2014, 04:38 PM

mal32 wrote:I tried, also, to help people to find this place by updating the link in the wikipedia article about OHOTMU: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Official_H ... rnal_links


Good thinking!


mal32 wrote:09-19-2014, 08:39 AM

zuckyd1 wrote:Good thinking!


Thanks. I would like everybody could find this place!!!


Andy E. Nystrom wrote:09-20-2014, 07:32 AM

mal32 wrote:I tried, also, to help people to find this place by updating the link in the wikipedia article about OHOTMU: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Official_H ... rnal_links


That's very good, thank you! With the Handbooks starting up again to whatever degree they are, I hope that brings in curious new people. Obviously we want to get the remaining veterans back as well, but new blood is great too!


Andy E. Nystrom wrote:11-24-2014, 07:57 PM

Now that the move is over a year old I just wanted to thank everyone for helping to keep this little community within a community active, by helping with the move, starting new threads, or participating in discussions. We've experienced some growing pains and I'm still not sure that everyone has found us, but I'm glad that we've been able to keep this going. Looking forward to the discussion that should arise next month when we have a new Handbook to talk about.


mal32 wrote:11-25-2014, 09:17 AM

I would like to do more to help but time and energies, sometimes, do not allow me... sorry...


Andy E. Nystrom wrote:11-25-2014, 02:43 PM

mal32 wrote:I would like to do more to help but time and energies, sometimes, do not allow me... sorry...


You're here and you post occasionally. That makes you an important part of the community in my book.


mal32 wrote:11-29-2014, 07:06 AM

Andy E. Nystrom wrote:You're here and you post occasionally. That makes you an important part of the community in my book.


:) thankyouverymuch
Andy E. Nystrom
Moderator / Writer
Moderator / Writer
Posts: 2577
Joined: Tue Jan 07, 2014 4:32 am

Re: About Who Watches the Watchers

Postby Andy E. Nystrom » Fri Jan 22, 2016 10:15 pm

I've updated this page to tailor it to Capes (Optional). If anyone has any further suggestions feel free to listn them here!
Andy E. Nystrom

Moderator, mainly Who Watches the Watchers
http://www.capesoptional.com/Forum/viewforum.php?f=67

My blog
http://saneinsanities.blogspot.ca

My photostream
https://www.flickr.com/photos/24917258@N05
Andy E. Nystrom
Moderator / Writer
Moderator / Writer
Posts: 2577
Joined: Tue Jan 07, 2014 4:32 am

Re: About Who Watches the Watchers

Postby Andy E. Nystrom » Fri Jan 22, 2016 11:58 pm

Tweaked the "move from Comixfan to CxPulp" section.
Andy E. Nystrom

Moderator, mainly Who Watches the Watchers
http://www.capesoptional.com/Forum/viewforum.php?f=67

My blog
http://saneinsanities.blogspot.ca

My photostream
https://www.flickr.com/photos/24917258@N05
Andy E. Nystrom
Moderator / Writer
Moderator / Writer
Posts: 2577
Joined: Tue Jan 07, 2014 4:32 am

Re: About Who Watches the Watchers

Postby Andy E. Nystrom » Mon Nov 28, 2016 5:09 pm

I updated the moving from CxPulp question and added a new question that recently arose, about whether it was okay to sell reference related books here. Unfortunately no we can't. Too many scammers out there.
Andy E. Nystrom

Moderator, mainly Who Watches the Watchers
http://www.capesoptional.com/Forum/viewforum.php?f=67

My blog
http://saneinsanities.blogspot.ca

My photostream
https://www.flickr.com/photos/24917258@N05
Dave_The_Rave
New Member
New Member
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Nov 27, 2016 1:23 am

Re: About Who Watches the Watchers

Postby Dave_The_Rave » Mon Nov 28, 2016 5:33 pm

That's fair enough. I myself have been scammed a couple of times by web sellers. Guess I'll have to try and sell on eBay then.
Andy E. Nystrom
Moderator / Writer
Moderator / Writer
Posts: 2577
Joined: Tue Jan 07, 2014 4:32 am

Re: About Who Watches the Watchers

Postby Andy E. Nystrom » Mon Nov 28, 2016 7:59 pm

Dave_The_Rave wrote:That's fair enough. I myself have been scammed a couple of times by web sellers. Guess I'll have to try and sell on eBay then.


Thank you for being understanding. The post you attempted to make definitely sounds legit and I believe you, but it's like leaving a door unlocked for an hour. 99 times out 100 it's safe, but it's that 100th time we have to watch out for.
Andy E. Nystrom

Moderator, mainly Who Watches the Watchers
http://www.capesoptional.com/Forum/viewforum.php?f=67

My blog
http://saneinsanities.blogspot.ca

My photostream
https://www.flickr.com/photos/24917258@N05
Dave_The_Rave
New Member
New Member
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Nov 27, 2016 1:23 am

Re: About Who Watches the Watchers

Postby Dave_The_Rave » Mon Nov 28, 2016 9:00 pm

Andy E. Nystrom wrote:
Dave_The_Rave wrote:That's fair enough. I myself have been scammed a couple of times by web sellers. Guess I'll have to try and sell on eBay then.


Thank you for being understanding. The post you attempted to make definitely sounds legit and I believe you, but it's like leaving a door unlocked for an hour. 99 times out 100 it's safe, but it's that 100th time we have to watch out for.


And even if I am legit (which I am), the next guy, or the guy after might not be.

If anyone needs any info from the Marvel Fact Files, feel free to ask.
Andy E. Nystrom
Moderator / Writer
Moderator / Writer
Posts: 2577
Joined: Tue Jan 07, 2014 4:32 am

Re: About Who Watches the Watchers

Postby Andy E. Nystrom » Mon Nov 28, 2016 9:48 pm

Dave_The_Rave wrote:And even if I am legit (which I am), the next guy, or the guy after might not be.

If anyone needs any info from the Marvel Fact Files, feel free to ask.


Exactly. I can't speak for Michael but my own biggest concern was setting a precedent and then having to awkwardly explain why I let some people and not others.

In terms of Fact Files, we're definitely interested in the contents of individual issues (i.e. who/what is profiled). Thus far we've been putting them in the Non-Marvel Handbooks thread (Non-Marvel refers to the publisher, even when the content is all Marvel). So feel free to check that thread and fill in any gaps. Quite a few issues are already noted but you might spot some gaps. I'm actually thinking of creating a separate thread for those because there are so many of them but in the meantime that would be the thread to post info to.
Andy E. Nystrom

Moderator, mainly Who Watches the Watchers
http://www.capesoptional.com/Forum/viewforum.php?f=67

My blog
http://saneinsanities.blogspot.ca

My photostream
https://www.flickr.com/photos/24917258@N05
User avatar
zuckyd1
Top Secret Crypto 20
Top Secret Crypto 20
Posts: 1191
Joined: Fri Mar 21, 2014 6:08 pm
Location: New York, NY
Contact:

Re: About Who Watches the Watchers

Postby zuckyd1 » Tue Nov 29, 2016 12:37 am

I originally suggested to Dave, who I know from the CMRO forum, that he post here. But the policy definitely makes sense. Hopefully you'll find a buyer on eBay. If I didn't already own them it would be the sort of collection I'd definitely be interested in purchasing!

As far as the Non-Marvel Handbooks thread goes, I've already posted information for all the issues that have come out in the U.S. (currently through issue #133). I post whenever new issues are released here, which is fairly irregularly. However Dave lives in England, where they're about 50 issues ahead of us, so if he wants to jump in and post whatever "advance" information he has he's of course welcome to. Otherwise I'll get to them whenever the gods of American distribution allow me to.
The Complete Marvel Reading Order — http://cmro.travis-starnes.com

Return to “Who Watches the Watchers?”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest