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St. Marks Comics is closing after 36 years

Among the many dim sum joints, weed paraphernalia emporiums and karaoke dungeons of St. Marks Place, St. Marks Comics was a favorite for tourists and regulars alike. The disheveled store stuck around for 36 years, surviving multiple eras of Manhattan and making it onto a legendary episode of Sex and the City. Yesterday, the store confirmed its closing, set for the end of February. 

Shop owner Mitch Cutler posted an update on the store's social media on Tuesday, citing the difficulties of fighting the good fight in Manhattan retail. The closure comes after an incomplete 2017 GoFundMe effort to pay back outstanding debts and fix the place up.  

Stepping into St. Marks Comics was like walking through multiple eras of NYC—and comic book—history. While the weekly comics were usually well-updated, other parts of the store felt like they hadn't been updated since Return of the Jedi was in theaters. The staff could be well-versed to a fault, or, conversely, have no idea what you were talking about when you inquired about the new issue of Batgirl. It was a mess—a perfect artifact of the grimy, sometimes-glorious St. Marks aesthetic. 

Fans of the store took to social media to share memories, proving yet again that there's no more varied social meeting point than a comic book store. 

St. Marks Comics starts its liquidation sale today, so be sure to get over there before all that's left are back issues of Identity Disc. And if you're looking for a new shop to patronize, here's our guide to the best comic book stores in NYC. 

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