Movie News

AICN COMICS! DRAX THE DESTROYER! SHOWCASE SUPERMAN! A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE! AND MORE!

Published at: Oct. 5, 2005, 3:35 p.m. CST

#20 9/28/05 #4

The Pull List
(Click title to go directly to the review)

DAREDEVIL #77
SHOWCASE PRESENTS SUPERMAN VOL. ONE
DRAX THE DESTROYER #1
TALES OF THE CREVICE: A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE
CHEAP SHOTS!

DAREDEVIL #77

Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Artist: Alex Maleev
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Reviewer: Sleazy G



Things I Have In Common With This Issue Or People In It:

I’ve been fired from a job I was going to quit because it sucked
I’ve replaced somebody on a job when the original person should’ve still had it
I’ve been told “I know it *seemed* bad before, but this time it’s *really* bad”
I’ve fallen into bed with the ex who came back and said she never stopped loving me
I’ve been about to break me off a piece when somebody showed up to wreck it
I’ve never put on a pair of red tights and kicked some ass
I sometimes think I’m leaving them wanting more when they’re really just bored with me


Things I Shouldn’t Have In Common With This Issue Or People In It But I Do:

No visible, high-profile criminals to be seen
No ass-kicking
No momentum
Just enough progress to fool myself into thinking anything’s changed
Wasted potential
A tendency to drag things out longer than I should


Things I Don’t Have In Common With This Issue Or People In It:

I’ve never been killed from behind by a resurrected assassin while looking at a lovely south view out the window of the Hancock Building.


Yet.


SHOWCASE PRESENTS SUPERMAN VOL. ONE

Writers: Jerry Coleman, Otto Binder, Bill Finger, Robert Bernstein, Alvin Schwartz, & Jerry Siegel
Artists: Curt Swan, Kurt Schaffenberger, Al Plastino, Wayne Boring, & Dick Sprang
Publisher: DC Comics
Reviewer: Prof. Challenger

"THE NEW PHONE BOOK IS HERE! THE NEW PHONE BOOK IS HERE!"
~ The Jerk
Way back a long time ago, in a world quite different than the world of today, there was a time when comic books were printed on the cheapest of cheap paper with the cheapest possible inks. Also, these cheap little comic books were considered disposable - about on par with readable toilet paper. Which reminds me, anybody else out there own one of those rolls of toilet paper from years ago with an actual complete Hulk comic printed on it? Well I do. Thankfully unused. But I digress. Not only were these comics disposable, the very idea that anybody would still be reading the actual monthly stories from that time some 50 years later was inconceivable. Yet, here I was last week, plunking down $10 for "over 500 pages" of Superman stories from 1958 and 1959.

Before I get to the content a bit, first let me tell you what I found astounding. This is basically, what? Two years worth of Superman stories? By the time of these stories, he had been continuously published for a solid 20 years, had a cartoon series in the theaters, had two movie serials, and was celebrating a successful TV-series that was also about to become one of the first weekly series to broadcast in color. Well, in this brief 2 year period, some of the most important and integral elements of the Superman mythology were introduced into the loose continuity of the time. Check this out. In this 500 page phonebook of 47-year-old SUPERMAN comics, we are presented with the comics that introduced (1) Superman's Fortress of Solitude, (2) the shrunken Kryptonian city of Kandor, (3) Brainiac, (4) Bizarro (as an adult - he had earlier appeared in a Superboy story), (5) Lori Lemaris, (6) Titano, the Super-Ape, (7) Metallo, (8) Supergirl, (9) re-introduction of Krypto (who had previously only been seen in Superboy stories), and (10) the Kryptonite Man. Clearly this was a productive time in Superman's Silver Age history if nothing else.

One of the fascinating things about getting your hands on resources like this is to get an honest look at the state of the continuity well before you were even born. For example, while I've read some of these stories referenced before and I've seen some of the covers, every single story in this collection was "new" to me. Furthermore, I am always struck by the difference between fan remembrances of long-lost comics versus getting to put my hands and eyes on the actual thing. I think I can hear the heads exploding around the country as the continuity-obsessed out there find out a few of the gems I'm about to share. Did you know that even after 20 years of stories and continuity, Superman's powers still were not gained because of the yellow sun/red sun difference between Earth and Krypton? Nope. Throughout all these stories, and in some it was a very important plot point, Superman's powers are inexplicably gained simply because of the difference in gravity between Earth and Krypton. That's it. Nothing more. Adjust the gravity to make it more like Krypton and Superman loses all his powers. Here's another one. Did you know that after 20 years of stories, Superman still did not have "heat vision" as a separate power from his x-ray vision? Yep. Consistently he monologues for the reader that the "heat of my x-ray vision…" or "the heat generated by my x-ray vision." The problem that obviously comes up with that is how come he doesn't burn up the damsel in distress when he uses that same x-ray vision to check and see if her arm or leg is broken, or other such situations.

Here's another handful of continuity conundrums for you. Brainiac's not any super-computer-robot guy. Nope. He's just a bald, maniacal alien. Furthermore, he looks nothing like he's drawn on the cover. Curt Swan gave Brainiac the familiar looking "Brainiac" look on the cover of the comic, but on the interiors, he's just a bald guy with a space-suit on. Or try this one. When Krypton exploded, guess how Supergirl's family really escaped death? Well, I'll just quote it for you:
"Our street of homes is being flung free into space, saving us from the concussion that wiped out all others!…Fortunately, a large bubble of air came along with this chunk! Also, this food machine is still working! We can stay alive indefinitely!"
How about that? It wasn't the exploding planet that killed everybody on Krypton, it was apparently the "concussions" they all suffered from it. Or how about that "bubble of air" that just happened to "come along" with their "street of homes" as they flew off into space. By the way, how exactly were they going to generate power to keep that "food machine" working? Also, how exactly does that "bubble of air" just stay there and not dissipate in the vacuum of space at this point? Or how about that Batman playing a prank on Superman at his Fortress of Solitude? Batman sure spent a lot of time and effort to sneak into that Fortress just to play a joke on his old buddy. By the end of that one story, Batman comes off less like a scary vigilante and more like a drunk, giggling, frat boy. Yeah, that's the way to celebrate the anniversary of Superman arriving on Earth, you bat-eared freak, try to make him believe he's going insane. Batman as Ashton Kutcher. Not very appealing.

And therein lies the charm in those old comics. They were utterly absurd. The level of continuity was simply that once something like a Fortress, or a Supergirl, or a shrunken city appeared, they were available to be referenced and used again as plot devices. That was continuity. No character ever has an epiphany or growth. They are simple two-dimensional characters utilized to tell a simplistic story, usually with a wink at the reader in the last panel. The writing is embarrassingly juvenile throughout with little in the way of cleverness. Only when a totally whacked out character like Mr. Mxyzptlk or Bizarro shows up is there any real effort at creative dialogue. Not to mention, nearly every single story is either ultimately about Lois Lane's desire to be Mrs. Superman or worse, Superman cruelly leading her on and then crushing her. There's even one story where a Kandorian criminal escapes and makes himself look like Superman and then the real Superman actually lets the fake Superman marry Lois under false pretenses. Of course, the marriage was annulled (as we know from her dialogue balloon at the end of the story), but geez, man. Superman's a misogynistic bastard who really seems to get an eerie thrill out of figuratively ripping Lois's heart right out of her chest and showing it to her over and over and over.

There was a strict formula to these stories and when you read them back to back like this, it becomes readily apparent. It also becomes readily apparent that nobody expected people to be rereading these things. In fact, there was likely an expectation that with the distribution of the time, there was a good chance that the average reader could rarely depend upon always being able to find the next issue, so every story was always self-contained within that comic - even if it was a "3 Part Novel" - it just meant all three stories in that issue made up one long story.

Here's the thing though: the SHOWCASE collection is a blast to read. I'm a researcher at heart and getting to put my hands on these first-hand sources in such an inexpensive format makes this a must-have for me. I'll tell you one other thing, these artists that drew these stories impressed me throughout the book. Al Plastino, for one, rarely gets a mention as one of the greats, but this guy knew how to tell a story. There is never a wasted image on the page and it's always clear and consistent in its look. The black and white presentation just highlights the work of all of these men in a way, in my opinion, they would have appreciated. Many times during this period of comic book publishing, the printing and the paper were so substandard that their hard work was often muddied up or blotchy. The modern printing and reproduction capabilities really highlight how nice their brush and line work was especially considering how fast they were churning these pages out. I came away from this package laughing at the absurdly weak writing but newly impressed by the work of the artists. If you are a fan of the Silver Age, this (and the GL SHOWCASE that also came out last week) really is an essential purchase for you. I want more.


DRAX THE DESTROYER #1 (of 4)

Writer: Keith Giffen Artist: Mitch Breitweiser Colorist: Brian Reber Publisher: Marvel Comics Reviewed by Dave Farabee



If you’re any shade of old-school Marvel fan, you might know who Drax the Destroyer is. If you’re not, you might be asking the same question editor Andy Schmidt poses in the issue’s afterword:
“Of all the Marvel characters, why are we reviving Drax?”
The quipped response is that Joe Quesada was out that day, but Schmidt shortly gets around to the real deal:
“There’s only one reason why DRAX THE DESTROYER is in your hands – because yours truly, Keith Giffen, and Mitch Breitweiser care about Drax. That’s it. We like the character, we like the history, we like the concept, we like the powers, and we want everyone else to like him as much as we do!”
I’m as surprised as anyone to find that Schmidt and company’s enthusiasm actually translates. DRAX THE DESTROYER is a good book – really good – and over the course of a four issue mini, it could theoretically even hit the great mark.

First things first: you don’t have to know squat about Drax the Destroyer to enjoy this book. As it happens, Drax is one of Jim Starlin’s cosmic-level characters (same sub-group that gave us Thanos, Adam Warlock, et al.), but since he’s got a history of dying and being reborn, he’s the kind of guy who gets a clean slate surprisingly often. This issue seems to occur just on the heels of one of those clean-slate moments. Great thing is that it is in-continuity – no cheap reboots here - as longtimers will gather from various subtle nods. But the feel is that of an introduction to the character. And it’s a good ‘un…

We open with the ominous (and gorgeously rendered) sight of a prison transport ship malfunctioning and drifting into Earth orbit. Writer Keith Giffen is in his serious, sci-fi mode here (see also, LEGION OF SUPERHEROES in the ‘90s), working up evocative narrative captions of the ship’s computer attempting to reboot and dropping catchy descriptors for the inmates like “galactic class criminals.” I don’t know what you have to do to be a galactic class criminal, but I bet it’s pretty bad. Bit of a Vin Diesel/PITCH BLACK vibe to these roughnecks.

Cut to inside the ship and said inmates are restless. Something’s up and they’re trying to figure it out between talking smack to each other. Readers might recognize a few names among these relatively obscure aliens hoods: Lunatik, The Blood Brothers, and Paibok the Power Skrull, notably. They’ve all got their eyes on the taciturn, green-skinned brute in a nearby cell – that’s Drax. Paibok and Lunatik know the score on him – “He was ‘only’ cobbled together to take on Thanos!” – but the Blood Brothers are gonna have to learn the hard way. And learn they will when the ship falls to Earth and this cadre of interstellar crooks finds themselves marooned on the planet.

Drax himself is revealed rather neatly by the way the other prisoners view him. As the story progresses, he also seems to shift around in intelligence a bit, going from approximately Hulk-like to at least human-level smarts. Interesting. I know he’s varied in the past, I think based on those blank-slate resurrections, and here the relatively swift change suggests that a sleeping giant has awakened, that action sharpens his wits. Exactly why he was on the prison ship and where his warrior ethos will take him are the big mysteries.

I’m somewhat less enthused about the earthbound scenes in the book. The crashed ship winds up near a small Alaskan town, population less than three thousand, and two elementary school kids are clearly set to play a major role in events. Granted, this is a tradition of the more cosmic heroes of Marvel and DC: Silver Surfer finds the Thing’s girlfriend as his anchor to humanity, Kirby’s New Gods hook up with everyday folk, and even Drax himself is supposed to be the spirit of a dead human resurrected in a powerful alien form. Keith Giffen even writes the kids with a nice smart-assedness, only occasionally betraying that he’s not nearly so in tune with youth culture as, say, Brian Bendis. It’s just…no matter how you slice it, it’s a bit cliché to force aliens to bond with humans. I hope Giffen’s got something new to bring to the table with it because I was having plenty of fun with the sparring space-criminals before the kids showed. Loved the notion that the space thugs realize Earth is a real nasty place for bad guys to wind up:
“You want him muckin’ around ‘n’ drawing all kinds of unwanted attention? Ever heard’a the Fantastic Four? The Avengers? … Even got an ex-herald’a Galactus feeling all proprietary ‘n’ protective!”
“The one with the board?”
“Does it matter!?”
The art throughout is uniformly excellent. It’s tight, digitally-painted style calls to mind both John Cassaday and a less-photo-reference-heavy Greg Land. And like DC’s ADAM STRANGE and GREEN LANTERN CORPS, DRAX looks to be part of a new wave of comic book visuals ready to shake off the dusty sci-fi shorthand of the ‘30s through the ‘60s in favor of an ILM/HEAVY METAL makeover. A part of me misses those Kirby dots we used to see everywhere in space, but I’m okay with sci-fi taking the lead over fantasy. Sometimes it’s time to move on, try something new, and artist Mitch Breitweiser’s up to the challenge alongside colorist Brian Reber.

Minor complaint: I definitely do miss Drax’s old look. It was certainly dated with those trademark Starlin wristbands and swashbuckler boots, but did that guy look ready to bust heads or what? The new take is more minimalist, even a little tribal with those tattoo thingees, and it’s gonna take a little getting used to.

Net result: lack of wristbands aside, consider DRAX THE DESTROYER essential to anyone who was ever into the “Thanos scene” – you know who you are – and solidly recommended to even the more casual superhero reader. I’m in the latter camp and find myself really looking forward to the next issue. The editor’s hype is actually an accurate summation:
“In short, DRAX THE DESTROYER is bad ass.”



By Vroom Socko



Damn, it’s been about a year since I’ve reached into the Crevice and pulled something out. I may be a little out of practice. Still, I thought it was important to do so this week. Why, you ask?

Well, it seems that some of you don’t know that A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE was historically a comic book.

While the film varies greatly from the original book, it does manage to stay true to the first third. (This is not to say the movie doesn’t kick ass. It’s a Cronenberg movie, fer crissake!) The book opens with a pair of killers on the open road, looking for a place to pick up a few extra bucks. Their pick is the town of Raven’s Bend, and the diner owned by Tom McKenna. Tom is just an average looking guy (excluding that finger he lost in a boating accident), but he manages to wipe the floor with these two punks. The papers proclaim him a hero, with the whole town applauding his actions. But that’s before three men from New York come to town, including the elderly, half blind Mr. Torrino. He’s got a nasty scar on his face, does Torrino. As well as a human finger in a jar dangling around his neck.

Unlike the movie, Tom (or, as Torrino insists on calling him, Joey Muni,) isn’t any sort of instinctive killer. He isn’t even someone who enjoys violence. He’s just a guy who, back in New York, made a mistake. He tried to help a friend, and it cost him the only life he knew. Just how much does one event define who and what we are? Does one act of violence make someone a bad man, an evil man? And just how long and how bad do you have to pay for that one misdeed? These are only a few of the questions posed by this story.

What makes this so interesting, for me at least, is that the book was written by John Wagner. This is the man who created JUDGE DREDD, one of the most over the top, satirical, fascistic pieces of fiction you’ll ever find in comics. This book is nothing like that. Oh sure, there are some pretty horrific acts of violence in here, but the main emphasis is on the effect of that violence. It’s some strong, solid storytelling, perhaps even some of Wagner’s best.

After you’ve seen the movie, (and if you haven’t, what are you waiting for?) give this book a read. At the very least it’ll give you more to talk about when discussing the film.

Question for Discussion



What’s the one comic you never expect to see made into a film?




DRAGONLANCE CHRONICLES #2 (of 8)

- Ah, too bad. This isn’t a terrible adaptation of the first Dragonlance book, but it has the same problem you often see in book-to-comic and movie-to-comic adaptations: it’s too hurried. You get that sense you’re watching a highlight reel, which might be enough for some just looking to see fave characters illustrated, but you lose what little subtlety and depth the books had. In this issue, for instance, the creepy doings of Darken Wood lose all of their atmosphere as we jump from key event to key event with no time to get a sense of the weight of the place. And a scene that should be exhilarating – the ride on the Pegasi – comes and goes in the space of about two pages. Even with just an extra page of the scene from the book with Tasslehoff trying to stay awake during the flight (and failing), we’d have gotten a better sense of the high fantasy world the characters are living in. Instead, the moment feels prosaic. The atmospheric art takes up the slack a bit, but I look at the series and the missed opportunities outweigh the otherwise solid craft going into it. - Dave

ULTIMATE IRON MAN #4

One of the reasons for the Ultimate Universe was supposed to be that things could really be different and the readers would never know what might happen next. There have been times when it feels like such a slight deviation that you wonder what the point is, but not so here. Orson Scott Card has given Tony Stark a completely different origin, and it’s an interesting and tragic one. He’s part Mr. Sensitive from X-STATIX, part Reed Richards. He’s also caught in the middle of some ugly family politics and has started building his suit in junior high to protect himself from bullies. Card is once again working with some of his signature material here—that of what evil, cruel, murderous little bastards kids can really be—but it works. He’s kept the pace up, introduced some new ideas and chilling nemeses, and there have been some truly disturbing images. I was hesitant to buy this series initially because it’s written by Card, but with one issue to go I have no qualms about saying it’s stronger than a lot of the other Ultimate miniseries (such as ULTIMATE SECRET SIX or the two ELEKTRA minis). -- Sleazy

TOMB RAIDER – THE GREATEST TREASURE OF ALL

- So taken was I with the very first TOMB RAIDER game from Eidos that through all the poor sequels, through all the awful comics, through all the bad Angelina Jolie vehicles…I’ve held out some silly hope that something fun could be done with Lara Croft’s Indy-Jones-meets-John-Woo stylings. I think I’ll officially give up now. TOMB RAIDER – THE GREATEST TREASURE OF ALL was sort of a final chance, fully painted by Joe Jusko and literally years in the making. Ah, to see such painting craftsmanship dashed on the jagged rocks of a violently bad Dan Jurgens story! Now…if there happen to be any Tomb Raider fanatics left in the world all these years after U2 hammered the final nail in the franchise’s coffin by including Lara Croft animation in their Zooropa tour…yes, you should pick this up for the art. It’s really, really good. Truly vibrant colors. Croft looks great, and is only occasionally too stiff from photo-referencing. One panel even has meticulously painted lion balls. What more can I say? - Dave

JLA #119

Ahhh, crap. I’ve had three top picks in the DCICD (DC Infinite Crisis Deadpool), but one of ‘em pulled ahead a coupla weeks ago due to some really heavyhanded foreshadowing. As of the last two pages of this issue, looks like I was right and the frontrunner just bought it. Maybe not, and they’re just in a whoooole lotta trouble, but things aren’t looking good for someone who has been one of the longest-standing members of the League. Nuthin’ puts your head on the block quite like wasted potential, though… -- Sleazy

NEW WARRIORS #4 (of 6)

- I’m just having a ton of fun with this series, another under-the-radar winner from Marvel with woefully light sales. We’ve seen this a lot lately, with books like LIVEWIRES, SPIDER-MAN/HUMAN TORCH, even the original RUNAWAYS. Knowing full well that this series isn’t going to suddenly become a sales winner, the best I can say is, “If you liked any of those other underdog books, you might well like NEW WARRIORS.” In the latest outing, the team investigates mysteries in a corporate town in Minnesota run by an ultra-efficient German motor company. Is Galactus’s herald, Terrax the Tamer, stealing pets? How will our reality-show heroes deal with the forced addition of a new member? Are the producers really gonna make ‘em drop the “new” in their name just ‘cause they’ve been “new” for years now? Is Virginia Woolf Marvel’s latest supervillain? And what dire event could cause The Man Called Nova to scream out, “It smells like liquid hell!”? Just a big ol’ doofy-fun comic. More smarts and heart than you’d be expecting, too. - Dave

RED SONJA #2

There are a couple of major strikes against this book. The first is that it’s published by Dynamite Entertainment Group—an offshoot of Dynamic Forces. This means that they’ve gone right for the three thousand schmucks in the “collector’s market” with multiple covers for every issue and packed every issue with lots of crappy in-house ads. The second is that this is not at all an adaptation of the original Robert E. Howard character; rather, it’s based on the 1970’s Marvel comic book that borrowed the name and little else from Howard’s creation. It’s also got a couple of major things going for it, though. So far the story by Michael Avon Oeming and Mike Carey’s been an exciting one with some solid twists. It’s also got some impressive art by Mel Rubi. I know I shouldn’t like this book on a conceptual level, but it’s hard not to have fun when an ass-kicker in a chain-mail bikini is setting a giant ogre’s head on fire using a flaming skull with a rope tied around it. If a healthy dose of action in the Hyborian kingdoms (with a refreshing lack of the cheesecake exploitation I feared) is your thing, and you can set the initial concerns aside, it’s worth checking out. -- Sleazy

NEW AVENGERS #11

- Yes, yes, I know this team is “new” and not my daddy’s Avengers. Maybe that justifies the Avengers going after low-level threats like a Yakuza uprising. Maybe that justifies the extended talky-talk this issue between Captain America and Daredevil. But please…don’t try to convince me there’s not something majorly wrong when Cap brings in mystery Avenger “Ronin” with the plea, “Please…if at all possible…no killing.” Bad enough that Wolverine’s been brought in explicitly to do the team’s dirty work, but the day CAPTAIN-FUCKING-AMERICA is reduced to pleading with a new recruit not to kill is…well, it’s probably yet another record-breaking sales day for the title, actually. I’m trying not to be condescending here, really trying, but this is just plain shameful. - Dave

JACK CROSS #2

The second issue doesn't slow down any. In fact, it raises the stakes quite a bit over the impressive premier issue. We learn a bit more about the protagonist, but not because of overly ripe narration. Instead Ellis has Cross show us what he's made of, which seems to be a mixture of sociopath, executioner and...liberal ideologue? Huh? Really? Hey, works for me. There have been comparisons made to 24's Jack Bauer, and not without reason--both characters share a chilliing determination to do whatever it takes, and both are well aware of the personal cost of what they do. It turns out Cross also has a bit of a masochistic streak and a disturbing method of commorating those he has left behind. He's the kind of character you hate to describe as charismatic because he's so creepy, but there's something compelling about him. This fast-paced action story about interagency politics in the world of post-9/11 intelligence is a riveting read. Ellis is flexing some muscles here you may not be used to seeing--track down the first two issues and you're bound to be impressed. - Sleazy

THE OFFICIAL HANDBOOK OF THE MARVEL UNIVERSE – ALTERNATE UNIVERSES 2005 - We all know these new MARVEL UNIVERSE books can’t hold a candle to the originals, with their profuse art and Elliot R. Brown technical illustrations, but credit where due on this latest one! It’s a profile of Marvel’s various alternate universes, alternate Earths, and alternate timelines, and it’s impressively complete. Biggies like Gaiman’s 1602 make it, of course, and Marvel 2099 (original and Marvel Knights version), but so do older concepts like the High Evolutionary’s Counter-Earth, the “Days of Future Past” future, and even Killraven’s sci-fi/fantasy world of rebels versus Martian war machines. There’s the Mangaverse, Grant Morrison’s “Here Comes Tomorrow” future from NEW X-MEN, Earth X, Kitty’s Fairy Tale(!), the “New Universe” setting from the ‘80s, Straczynski’s SUPREME POWER setting (and Gruenwald’s too), and even the cartoon-world that gave us…Peter Porker, the Spectacular Spider-Ham. There’s also an appendix with tons of littler alternate worlds, actually given numerical designations now in order to accommodate the canonical designation of the Marvel Universe proper as “616.” DAY-amn! A legitimately excellent reference tool. - Dave

STAR WARS – X-WING: ROGUE LEADER #1 (of 3)

- I’m such a sucker for a heroic role call, so ROGUE LEADER #1 gets instant points with me for featuring one. Rogue Squadron is, of course, the name of the X-Wing hotshots lucky enough to survive all the cool explodo in the STAR WARS movies. As this new miniseries gets around to each of the notables in turn, they get the equivalent of a movie freeze-frame with a text piece that reels of their name, species, starfighter of choice (X-Wing? A-Wing? Y-Wing? Who knew the alphabet could be so cool...), and their notable acts in service to the Rebellion. You almost feel sorry for the guys who just get meritorious service awards, though – they’ve got feel like they just stepped out of a cold pool when they see Luke and Wedge each credited with bringing down Death Stars. Served!

Anyway, it’s STAR WARS, which means “light but fun” when done right, and that’s what this is. Story takes place post-RETURN OF THE JEDI, and opens with Rogue Squaders hunting down stray Imperials on Endor, then heading to Corellia for some R&R that we all know ain’t gonna happen. Really nice art by Tomas Giorello. Really nice coloring by Michael Atiyeh. Worthy of those who’ve got the STAR WARS jones and no more movies to see. - Dave

B.P.R.D.: THE BLACK FLAME #2 (of 6)

- Even given the high standards of previous Mignola/Arcudi/Davis B.P.R.D. miniseries, this issue’s something special. Not only is Abe’s depression well handled, but I’m absolutely loving Roger the Homunculus and his effectiveness in imitating the hardboiled Captain Daimio. There’s a great conversation regarding the latter where Liz expresses her concern to Johann that Roger’s taking his new role too far (“There’s more to Roger than killing bad guys – or there should be.”). Johann’s response is unexpected and enlightening. And beyond the character stuff, the issue brings the creepy big-time! The research room with its chained-up frogmen is a wonderfully horrific environment in and of itself. Has scientists trying to teach the frogmen to speak and even finding them writing on their own. Weeeeeird! Love the book. The art team of Guy Davis and colorist Dave Sinclair owns. - Dave

YOUNG AVENGERS #7

- Got ourselves a jumping-on point here as the surprise hit enters its second story arc, and guess what? It’s still really good, a worthy contender with RUNAWAYS for the best teen superhero book running. As backdrop to the issue, we’ve got Cap and the Avengers struggling to figure out what to do with the brat-packers – some good moments there – even as the kids try to figure out whether to reveal their exploits to their parents. The kid/parent stuff is especially strong. Makes for scenes ranging from surprisingly funny (yes, one of the gay kids inadvertently outs that to his parents instead of his superherodom – with surprising results), to truly emotional (the scene between Eli and his grandfather will wow all but the most coldhearted Grinches). And while the soap opera stuff is at the fore, the very character-driven nature of the story leads the kids right into their next threat – a favorite, semi-obscure villain of mine, and one I hope gets his due as a serious foe. Was slightly bummed to see a guest artist on the issue (maybe the whole arc?), but Andrea DiVito impresses me a lot more here than on his recent THOR/BETA RAY BILL work. Guess I like him better on down-to-earth material, where his style specifically reminds me of Tom Grummett’s fine work on recent issues of NEW THUNDERBOLTS. You’ll want to be trying this book if you haven’t already. - Dave

Readers Talkback

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  • Oct. 5, 2005, 3:44 p.m. CST

    ?

    by savage_henry

    can it be?

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 3:45 p.m. CST

    first

    by Darth Kal-El

    tales from the crevice sounds like a porn

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 3:45 p.m. CST

    Does the "Alternate Universe" thingy include the Ultraverse?

    by SleazyG.

    I mean, since Marvel are being such bastards about the properties, I wouldn't be surprised if they tried to pretend they didn't exist.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 3:47 p.m. CST

    damn not first!

    by Darth Kal-El

    i should know better than to even try

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 3:59 p.m. CST

    Ahh, c'mon, Dave.

    by SleazyG.

    We all know Cap MUST be okay with killing under certain circumstances--HE FOUGHT IN WORLD WAR TWO, fer crissakes. So yeah, as the original "supersoldier", I say good on 'im. All that namby-pamby "no killing" crap is just stupid. He may only believe in killing honorably, and only when all other options are exhausted, but...shit. Not everybody is as strong, resilient, durable and quick to heal as he is. It's not outside the realm of possibility. No, here's the real problem with this issue: we're going on a full year now of The Avengers being a huge batch of pussies who can't take care of themselves. Let's see who's had to get called in to save their asses lately: Dr. Strange, Magneto, S.H.I.E.L.D., Emma Frost, and now whoever's in the Ronin gear. The whole team has been neutered, embarassed and nursed along in THEIR OWN GODDAMN BOOK. It's a fuckin' disgrace, really, but the Bendii are gonna keep buying it even if the book ends up featuring Invincible, Ultimate Geldoff and Ben Urich as the starting lineup.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 4:02 p.m. CST

    Is Michael Stackpole writing the ROGUE LEADER comics?

    by SleazyG.

    Cuz his RL novels are pretty much the only ones in the STAR WARS series worth reading, so if he's on the comics they stand a decent chance of not completely sucking.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 4:06 p.m. CST

    Anyone read OMAC #6?

    by Thalya

    Anticlimax, much?

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 4:08 p.m. CST

    Cap

    by the G-man

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 4:10 p.m. CST

    Cap's "no killing" code is, shall we say, fluid

    by the G-man

    Lately the code vanishes and appears from month to month and writer to writer

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 4:13 p.m. CST

    Hey, Prof. Challenger...

    by Dave Bowman

    When you use a flashlight to look at something, does the torrent of radiation set it ablaze? No? How about if you powered it up by a factor of 100,000? Think about it.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 4:21 p.m. CST

    Not yet Thalya

    by The Heathen

    I'm getting my books tomorrow. Let you know then. Later Cog Smooches.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 4:23 p.m. CST

    Also, JLA..

    by Thalya

    So who's the person in the red cape? Earth-2 Superman or Supergirl? And how depressing is it that Booster leaves just as he's being considered for the new roster? (of course he'll go back to the future, probably one different from his own, find a key piece of info or two to defeat the baddie and come back to save the day in the nick of time, but still..:( )

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 4:34 p.m. CST

    You call that Daredevil piffle a review?

    by fiester

    C'mon. There's nothing worse than someone trying to be clever and failing miserably. If incoherence had an awards so you would be a nominee, my friend. That "review" is an utter and complete waste of space.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 4:34 p.m. CST

    OMAC #6

    by AstroThunder

    Yeah, read OMAC #6 (mentioned it in last week's talkback, no one noticed *sniffle*) and thought it was so-so at best, though it did it's job of setting up some plot points for Infinite Crisis. Rucka should have paced the mini better. I'm saying the big throwdown in this issue should have taken place over two issues so you could really feel the stakes involved in the battle. Rucka could have built up the dramatic tension making this seem like a decisive battle for the heroes and he could have let readers, I dunno, actually see some hardcore, multi-superhero fightin' like it's the Alamo (the devil shit, if you will). The entire story should have been restructured so it felt like a complete story in and of itself rather than just exposition prior to the big company event. Meh. I'm still looking forward to that there Crisis and the George Perez covers.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 4:39 p.m. CST

    What? Neither of the heroes in Young Avengers is actually gay..

    by iamnicksaicnsn

    Right? Didn't they mention his parent's only thought he was gay, instead of the superhero stuff? Right? Did I miss-read it?

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 4:53 p.m. CST

    Ultraverse IS mentioned.

    by rev_skarekroe

    But only on the page that lists various Universes, their numerical designations, and their first appearances. Strangely, the Ultimate Universe (as far as I can tell) is NOT mentioned, but Zombie World from Ultimate FF is. Weird.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 4:58 p.m. CST

    Didn't a recent Captain America writer declare that Cap had

    by rev_skarekroe

    It blows my mind. Thank God for Ultimate Cap. A lot of people think he's a parody, but I think he's spot-on.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 5 p.m. CST

    Sorry about the DD thing, pal.

    by SleazyG.

    I think you're at least partially right. I actually hit upon a far more incisive, salient, on-point criticism. Unfortunately, by then the column had already been submitted for posting on the site, so I couldn't rewrite it. Suffice to say I have a very real and very specific gripe with this issue, and should the problem persist next month (as I expect it will) I'll address the matter far more directly. And no, I'm not being snarky here.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 5:08 p.m. CST

    I suppose it was quite literally the least Marvel could do.

    by SleazyG.

    As in, it's not possible to have done any less without doing nothing at all. Typical. Perfectly good characters, some of 'em, but since the ownership is still in part the creator's they won't open that door. Talk about a shitty move--buy a minor competitor just so you can shut 'em down in the wake of your own failed experiment. Talk about bullshit...

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 5:08 p.m. CST

    i can't wait to see daredevil get his sight back..

    by jig98

    ...when the paparazzi finally leave lindsay lohan alone...hah! both of those things will never happen! got ya!

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 5:23 p.m. CST

    Hey, Prof!

    by sideshowbob

    I too loved that Superman Showcase book. When I was a kid I never liked the Superman on the stands, but loved diving back into the stuff from the 50s and 60s. It's like they are written by a 10-year-old and there is a joyful, madcap logic to it that is consistent enough that you actually *believe* in this world. You know, the world where Circe can turn Superman into a lion and his biggest worry about it is keeping up his charity appointments with orphans. And where Batman can be a prankster (didja see the size of the cake Batman personally baked for Superman afterward, though?). Come to think of it, I like doofy prankster Batman worlds better than the sad-sack emo "Waaah! I thought you were my friend!" Batman in JLA#119. In fact, I'd say DC comics is general were vastly superior in the Silver Age than they are now.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 5:28 p.m. CST

    Great call on JACK CROSS, Sleazy...

    by sideshowbob

    Nothing, and I mean NOTHING about a Warren Ellis story about a hard-ass anti-terrorist agent sounds appealling to me, and yet this book is ridiculously readable. I'm enjoying it quite a bit.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 5:51 p.m. CST

    Drax!

    by MisterE

    Drax is great! Give it a try, people.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 6:13 p.m. CST

    ___ Will Never Be A Film!

    by Goonie

    Elektra (whoops, too late); Sub Mariner (whoops, too late); Ghost Rider (whoops, too late); Cat Woman (you get it)...Iron Man???

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 6:33 p.m. CST

    not too many reviews but a good crop of cheap shots which i like

    by Darth Kal-El

    good job guys!

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 6:58 p.m. CST

    No matter what you think Cap did in World War II...

    by Dave_F

    ...does anyone really believe that Cap, in his role as an Avenger, would advocate killing? I'm pretty sure that ain't in their charter. Also pretty sure they've had about a zillion stories where they say things like, "The Avengers don't kill." Would Iron Man pop a killing shot into Graviton if he was a split-second away from pressing a button that'd blow up Cleveland? Well, *yeah*. Yeah, if there was no other way. But the group sure as shit doesn't back it, and doesn't fucking coddle newbies who might be killing in the Avengers' name! My god, Cap actually came across as as big a pussy as...well, as all the rest of the Avengers have been. In that respect, Sleazy - the neutering of the team - I completely agree with you. What is this, the Secret Defenders?

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 7:04 p.m. CST

    Re: JACK CROSS

    by Dave_F

    Got no major beef with this book, but it's just not my thing. Did want to mention something critic Paul O'Brien said, though, a criticism of the lead's personality that seemed fairly astute to me. Comes at the end of this paragraph summing up the first issue: "The pacing leaves a little to be desired as well, as the story ends not with any particular climax, but with Cross breaking off from an interrogation and wandering off to look a bit pained on his own. It looks distinctly like an arbitrary page break in a series paced for the trade. And the idea that our hero is a liberal campaigner is just kind of thrown out there in dialogue rather than being dramatised in any effective way." **** So my question to the JACK CROSS fans: is Ellis's macho liberal any more fleshed-out now?

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 7:19 p.m. CST

    I'd cover KODT, GreatN...

    by Dave_F

    ...but I'm not sure I'd be able to wade through the awful art. I get gaming humor and all, but we're talking about a visual medium - weak cartooning shouldn't be justified just because the talky-talk's clever. I might put it under the microscope one of these days, though. Maybe an extended read will prove me wrong.

  • The gag was that one of 'em was about to come out to his parents about being a superhero, they though he was coming out of the *closet*, and they were all like, "We knew all along and we still love you!" It's a funny moment because it is ONE of the kid's secrets...just not the secret he was trying to get out at that particular moment! I guess you could say his cape is still in the closet. **** Now...Someone back me up on this. I'll feel like a dumbass if I misread it, but I'm pretty sure I didn't.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 7:30 p.m. CST

    By the way Sleazy...

    by Dave_F

    I can appreciate the call to arms against Marvel's strongarm tactics with the Ultraverse, but...why the hard-on for it? Did those guys produce something of worth when I wasn't looking?

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 8:03 p.m. CST

    Hello Dave...

    by Prof C

    What are you doing, Dave? Dave? What...are...you...doing...Dave? Daaaiiisssyyy....Daaaaiiiissssyyyy.....giiiivvve........mmmeeee.....yooouuuurrrrr.........aaannnssswwweeerrrrrr..........plllleeeeeeaaaazzzzzzz.......................................

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 8:08 p.m. CST

    Seriously, though Dave

    by Prof C

    Yeh. You're taking this stuff waaaaayyyyyyy too seriously. :)

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 8:10 p.m. CST

    Do you *should* never be a movie or *could*?

    by sideshowbob

    I don't think there is a single comic out there that couldn't OR shouldn't be made into a great film. Although there's so much in comics that can't adequately translate. I mean, I'd love to see a great Watchmen movie (and I think it's possible), but the book uses so many tools of the comics medium that an adaption would have to be good on its own merits, exclusive from the source material. *** So, I'll cheat on the question a little and suggest one that is actually close enough to happening that it has its own imdb listing: Ex Machina. I don't think you can separate the 9/11 aspect from the comic book story, and I don't think the country is ready to see just one tower standing up there on the big screen. *** But seeing as the BKV is hammering out the script right now, it will be interesting to see how they circumvent that challenge and if they succeed.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 8:11 p.m. CST

    Sideshow Bob

    by Prof C

    Despite the fact that Superman is a heartless sumbitch, I gotta jump on board with the point that the goofy prankster Batman is TONS more enjoyable and likeable of a character than the Batjerk crybaby they've got running around Gotham currently.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 8:11 p.m. CST

    Ah, for fuck's sake...

    by sideshowbob

    Who stretched out the talkback?

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 8:14 p.m. CST

    Sideshow Bob

    by Prof C

    I think Hal 9000 did that when he took over my computer

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 8:25 p.m. CST

    THE FUCKER THAT STRETCHED THIS SHIT

    by conchetumare

    Is Prof C with his Daisy crap Fuck him

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 8:31 p.m. CST

    Conchetumare

    by Prof C

    Females only. And, well, being married and all, I must request full discretion on all who want to participate in your suggestion.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 8:38 p.m. CST

    Are you kidding me with this column?

    by El Vale

    4 Books? Thoughts after i read

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 8:47 p.m. CST

    El Vale

    by Prof C

    Sometimes "real" life gets in the way of comic reviews. Even for the @$$holes. Plus I was trying to digest 500+ pages of 1950s Superman in my spare time. :) Shooting for more books next week.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 9:28 p.m. CST

    stretched talkbacks

    by blackthought

    are like real shitty...sighs.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 9:30 p.m. CST

    Yeah, Cross is a little more fleshed out now.

    by SleazyG.

    Not a *lot* more, but somewhat. Thing is, how fleshed out is Jack Bauer? Not so much. We're gonna get more of the character as it goes along, but this isn't a character study. It's an action book, and at least as good and as effective in its way as, say, THE LOSERS.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 9:32 p.m. CST

    How is that Daredevil review not a cheap shot?

    by El Vale

    What a joke, i mean why the hell bother? Listen, if you have nothing new or at least slightly interesting to say about a book, don't waste my time with shit like this. God, i wish i was paying for this so i could complain more.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 9:33 p.m. CST

    Gay Young Avengers.

    by SleazyG.

    I'm still not sure. It seems like they probably are, but when I read the scene I noticed another potential interpretation: since the kids were so surprised by the parents, and so unwilling to reveal their powers to begin with, they decided to take the easy way out and let the gay thing lie. "Oh, umm...yeah! That was it! We're gay! heh heh..." and then not put off the costume thing for another week or two.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 9:47 p.m. CST

    Strrrreeeettttccchhhed Talkback Complaints

    by Prof C

    Geez. Is it really that damn hard to just scroll your screen over? I bet y'all are also the type who fret and fume because you can't find the remote and have to actually walk to the TV to change the channel.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 9:55 p.m. CST

    Why I get cranky about Malibu's Ultraverse

    by SleazyG.

    Here's the thing, Dave. Maybe the characters weren't all that amazing, and maybe the stories weren't the best, but there was a lot of potential. You've got a lot of books that lasted from a few months to a couple of years--no time to really get the ball rolling. There was a lot of top-notch talent there, though. Marv Wolfman. Kyle Hotz. Barry Windsor-Smith. Steve Gerber. James Robinson. Dan Abnett. George Perez. Norm Breyfogle. Terry Dodson. Len Strazewski. Darick Robertson. Art Thibert. Warren Ellis. Len Wein. And that's not all of 'em, either. Those are some serious fuckin' heavy hitters, man. Some were winding down, some were just getting started, but that's frikkin' talent. Now let's look at the starting lineup of talent at Image and the quality of the books *they* started with. Let's face it, we all look back on that stuff in shame. I, for one, will never forgive myself for buying PROPHET. Now let's look at what Image is today: a mid-sized publisher that may indulge its founders now and again (SHADOWPACT) but also gives established and new creators alike a place to stretch their minds and try new, non-spandex ideas out (FELL., PARADIGM, etc.). Now imaging what Malibu could have accomplished, given their creative base, if they'd had a little time to get their feet under 'em. Marvel saw that Malibu was a real honest-to-god threat. So what did they do? They bought 'em, swearing up and down they weren't gonna shut the line down. They kept it around for less than two years: just long enough to use it as an escape hatch from the "Heroes Reborn" debacle, do some crossovers like CAPTAIN AMERICA/PRIME, and then shut down all the characters and creators permanently. The real reason those characters aren't even in this little collection is because they'd have to give partial royalties to the original creators. This is so anathema to Marvel's way of thinking that even the people like Stan Lee and Jack Kirby couldn't get the corporation to pay for dental insurance, so what are the odds they're ever gonna give Len Wein royalties if they can help it? It was a real bastard of a move, and in some industries it'd be grounds for a monopoly lawsuit. They bought out a competitor with the specific intent of shutting down the entire product line just so they could hold on to their market share. It's horseshit, and it bums me out because we'll never know if Malibu could have been another Image or Dark Horse. I mean, anybody remember Dark Horse's superhero stuff from around the same time? And yet look where they are now. I can't help but wonder if the market might be a much different place if Marvel hadn't been such bastards then, and if they didn't continue to be so now.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 10:18 p.m. CST

    The Gay-vengers

    by Dave_F

    But...didn't the previous issue of YOUNG AVENGERS make it explicit that Wiccan (awful, awful name) and the shape-changing kid were gay? I guess with a shape-changer, sexuality truly IS a matter of choice, but wasn't there as raunchy joke that Asgardian changed his name because folks would've had a field day with that original name if they found out he liked guys? The implied gag was that he'd be called "ass-guardian." No, really. Ain't lyin'. I was torn between whether the scene was slyly funny or just plain dumb, but either way, it only works if the kid's gay. Plus, like, every single letter in every issue of YOUNG AVENGERS is talking about the gay kids and Heinberg is responding like it's out there. Dem kids is gayer than Vartox: http://tinyurl.com/akrmv

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 10:20 p.m. CST

    Good answer, Sleazy.

    by Dave_F

    I never read any ULTRAVERSE stuff, but that's a good answer.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 10:24 p.m. CST

    Huh?

    by Prof C

    I've never read a full issue of YOUNG AVENGERS. (waiting for the trade) But, are you telling ME that the son of Thor is (1) gay? and (2) is now calling himself "Wiccan"? He's naming himself after the pagan witchcraft religion inordinately popular with modern lesbians? The son of Thor?

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 10:26 p.m. CST

    Non-spoiler point about LOST...

    by Dave_F

    Okay, just watched the new episode. As ever, lots of great moments. But lemme tell ya...if the show doesn't break its habit of answering every mystery with three other mysteries, I'll have to drop it in a few episodes. For a show like this, predicated on a mystery, it's just not enough for the journey to be fun - I need to know I'm in for some kind of resolution. Anyone else getting frustrated even as they enjoy all the moment-to-moment stuff?

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 10:30 p.m. CST

    Long story, Prof, but...

    by Dave_F

    He ain't the son of Thor. No relation whatsoever in fact. Name was just a sort of ruse. However...that said..."Thor's gay son" does have distinct WHAT IF? possibilities. ("Dad, I'm gay." "I say thee, NAY!"

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 10:51 p.m. CST

    You gringos sure love "dropping" stuff eh?

    by El Vale

    I have nothing else to say. Someone piss me off or something, please.

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 11:05 p.m. CST

    Dave_F: re: Lost

    by Thalya

    We're definitely on the same wavelength. Here's what I just posted in the Lost TB: "It's quickly becoming apparent that just like the island, Lost itself is a psychological experiment. They're never going to give answers to it all, the ending will be shrouded in mystery and will be up for multiple interpretations. Anyone getting a little tired of this and yearning for something a bit more substantial and satisfying? (raise your hand) At least Buffy and Angel had things they actually wanted to say (about good and evil, love, redemption). This show just plays about it all and that's all it'll ever be able to do. Tonight's ep was much better, granted, than last week's, but this show used the conspiracy stuff as a distraction from what it was actually trying to say: there are never going to be any concrete, satisfying answers, it's all about how the characters react to things and how their philosophies clash." I guess I really just don't like the relativism of it all.

  • Is this America's answer to anime? When it comes to storytelling traditions, it's certainly a truism that the East places a higher value on the journey, the West a higher value on the destination. Is LOST our experiment into Eastern storytelling?

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 11:34 p.m. CST

    Lost

    by El Vale

    There's two things i've noticed about the show that make me trust it: The name Lost clearly points at something other than just being stranded (with like 8 million other people). Could've been called "Stranded" or "Castaways" or something. I believe the show is ultimately about these people finding themselves. The other thing that, from day one, caught my attention was the show's...i don't know, title sequence? Can i call it that? With the white lost logo against the black background, coming at us, slightly out of focus. And then when it's too close to make out completely, it becomes clear. And then goes away. I think there's two possibilities: Either that it comments and paralells the show's structure, or that i'm reading too much into it. But i'd love that, when things are so close that you can finally see them clearly, you can't see the whole picture. If the show doesn't give me all the answers, i say "GREAT, there's a show on tv that's making me think hard!"

  • Oct. 5, 2005, 11:47 p.m. CST

    i'll still be on...

    by blackthought

    riding with LOST...there's so much crap out there and this has grabbed my attention most grabbingly err...um...that i'm eager and willing right now to see where it will take me. and Dave_F interesting point with the east vs. west style of storytelling...i'm quite familiar with both...and thayla...sighs...angel...i shall never get over it...

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 12:18 a.m. CST

    "Lost" Will Probably Spiral Into Stupidity Like "Twin Peaks". So

    by Flim Springfield

    Twin Peaks probably would have been the best mini-series ever. Once they were forced to stretch the story out and make it up as they go, an interesting mystery turned into a dumb possession story.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 1:10 a.m. CST

    Thalya, LOST actually has a hell of a lot to say...

    by SleazyG.

    ...regardless of the story arc. Every single week, they're dealing with The Big Stuff. How did we get where we are? Does our past matter? Is who we are relative to those around us? Is Fate real, or is our future our own to make? Is it possible to pick up and build a new life somehwhere else, or will our pasts always haunt us? What the crap is up with something that sounds like either a bear or a backhoe but looks like a black cloud of swarming nanobots? Err...sorry...a bit off track with that last one. My point is this: the relativism is a big part of the point of the story here. Look, the Whedon stuff? It's not really about Good vs. Evil. You know that I know that you know that stuff was just the window dressing. Whedon writes about the core basics of human existence: Family, Friends, Betrayal, Redemption, Transformation and so on. LOST is about the bigger picture that the basic elements are a part of. If this was another "Alias" screwing us about with Rambaldi MacGuffins and whatnot I'd be ticked. It's pretty clear, though, that far more so than most shows on TV LOST is about using the character to illuminate different aspects of the human condition. The first two episodes this season have already given us glimpses of the darker side in the form of "The Others"--additional survivors who've gone all "Lord of the Flies"--not to mention what happens when people who mean well totally screw the pooch (Namaste my ass, stupid training movie doctor). There are a lot of very big, very deep themes going on here. Maybe they'll bobble it. Maybe they won't sustain it. But maybe they will, and it'll all turn out pretty well. Don't get me wrong, the week-to-week tension and mystery are very well done, but in the end that's not really what the show is about, and it's not what I'm really watching it for. It's the kickass writing on the characters and themes that make the show, which is why I'm not going anywhere.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 1:48 a.m. CST

    Nobody'll ever adapt any Warren Ellis work

    by Southfield

    Look what happened to GLOBAL FREQUENCY. Shot drawn, quartered and skull fucked before it could even get off the ground. Way to crush an idea there, you poncy american executives.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 1:56 a.m. CST

    Thalya

    by El Vale

    What Sleazy said

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 3:24 a.m. CST

    I hope that Preacher is never made a film ...

    by Spacker Dave

    ... because you could only imagine how watered down and pointless any two hour adaptation would be, regardless of Garth Ennis' involvement. 100 Bullets, Y: The Last Man, Planetary, all are way too dense a narrative to be given anything but a television series. But who wants to risk t.v. these days?

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 4:37 a.m. CST

    History of Violence - the movie is way better

    by Bryan

    I know it's kind of unfair to watch the movie first, then go back to the source material. But I found that pretty much everything I loved from the movie was a deviation from the comic. For example, pretty much the main theme of the movie - his family's discomfort with discovering his secret past - is not from the book. In the book they think it's cool and support him without hesitation. Also, the whole thing is just a lot sillier. He never really was a mobster, just a kid who tried to steal from mobsters. And, perhaps most tellingly, he has a son named "Buzz" who wears a backwards baseball cap and says things like "no prob, dad!" That's the kind of high class storytelling we're dealing with here. I think this goes in the category of The Crow for movies that transcend their graphic novel source material (although, to be fair, AHOV the book is not nearly as awful as The Crow the book).

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 5:46 a.m. CST

    I suspect my deal on LOST will be...

    by Dave_F

    ...if after a few more episodes I'm sensing that the show's just spinning its wheels in order to belt out these character stories (fascinating though they are), I'll adopt what we in the funnybook biz call the "wait for the trade" approach (boxed DVD set). Then you guys who follow the individual "issues" can tell me if the series maintains or not. Thing is, I don't really *want* to be a trade reader on this one, 'cause LOST gets good mileage out of the serial format and the participatory hook of the discussions that go on between issues. Still, I sez if you're going to adopt a mystery format, you'd better be providing me some kind of untouchably deep insight into the human condition along the way if you're not even going to pay lip service to the most basic promise of the mystery: resolution. Do I need to bring up the obvious? Are you guys going to make me bring up X-FILES? Because they strung that shit along into obsolescence, and IT had some pretty subtle character insight along the way...had some neat things to say about obsession, the nature of belief, platonic relationships, and whatever the Topic of the Week was...had all kinds of new ways to scare us...but I don't think there's a person left on the planet who feels the good stuff justified the series' terminal meandering. Examples like that mean we have to be realistic in our expectations. I'd love to be pie-in-the-sky in hoping for LOST to buck the trend - obviously I wouldn't even be concerned about this if the show hadn't blown me away on so many occasions - but we're talking about a show by the producer of ALIAS. How pie-in-the-sky can we be with *that* shadow looming?

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 6:45 a.m. CST

    For some reason, reading Silver Age Superman depresses me.

    by Dave_F

    I really dug Prof's review. Thought he made a great case for the merits of SHOWCASE: SUPES. But for whatever reason, what Sideshow decribed as the "joyful, madcap logic" of old Superman stuff never appealed to me, even when I read reprints as a kid (I used to check out proto-trades of the stuff from the city library). I guess I was already reading some Marvel stuff at that age, so that might've minimized my tolerance for DC's Silver Age absurdism. I'd read those Superman stories and every damn one of 'em felt like a waste of the character. Felt like his all his powers were just novelties, and the stuff with Lois Lane trying to drop a dime on Supes' secret ID drove me nuts. You know how when you're a kid, or even when you're an adult, and you watch some formula show like GILLIGAN'S ISLAND or THREE'S COMPANY, and there's almost something depressing about watching the characters eternally failing and tripping up over their own devicers? That's the sort of oogie feeling that old Superman comics give me. Can't rightly explain it - I just know that Superman mostly appeals to me with a more epic approach (Donner's movie) or a more Marvel/sci-fi approach (Byrne). Even Alan Moore's two excellent tales of the Silver Age Superman are interesting to me in *spite* of the Silver Age trappings. I hate old-school Bizarro. Old-school Bizarro must die. But a dying version of him saying, "Hello, Superman... Hello." Now that's taking the seeming randomness of the Silver Age and mapping something onto it I can use. ****** As a sidebar: I find Golden Age Superman fairly readable, though Golden Age Batman's lots better. And when it comes to the rest of DC's Silver Age...haven't read much, but I recently enjoyed the DOOM PATROL archives (and it's not lost on me that that's a surprisingly Marvel-style book), and the new SHOWCASE: METAMORPHO looks pretty keen too.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 8:40 a.m. CST

    Man...

    by JonQuixote

    ...if you're bitching about LOST not giving you proper answers even as they're handing them out by the bucketload, I don't know what to tell you. I mean, we just got the "What's the hatch" answer. Of course there are gonna be more questions - do we really want Jack or Locke to be sat down and have everything spelled out to them and us like a Bruce Jones comic? And really, who cares? I mean, I can understand being frustrated at ep 2.2, which was serious wheel spinning - not in its reluctance to give answers, but in basically repeating everything we knew. But those eps are really rare, and both 2.1 and 2.3 have been tremendously progressive in moving the "overarc'ing mystery" forward. *** Even if they weren't, Jonny say relax. It's not as though we're getting heaping episodes of nothing. Each episode is jam-packed with motion and substance, regardless of whether or not we're learning what's in the hatch or they're devoting an entire episode to Sun & Jin's wedding night. Let the mysteries unfold at they're own rate - really, what's the rush? I'm operating under the assumption that the answer(s) to what the island is and why the plane crashed there is a good one. I don't want it answered by the mid point on season 2 and then the writers having to come up with a BRAND NEW(tm) mystery, that won't be so good. As long as it keeps moving forward, as long as each ep is packed with goodness, they can take as long as they want to get to their "destination", whatever that may be.

  • are you @#$*! retarded? Thus ends my mildly offensive nitpick of the week.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 9:09 a.m. CST

    El Vale

    by Thalya

    What Dave_F said. Furthermore, here's something I'd really like to know: how connected are you to these characters? Just how _grounded_ is this show? I'd really hope that the characters would be the anchors here, but they're just as wispy, enigmatic and one-note as everything else on this show. X-Files was mysterious, but the Mulder/Scully UST from the Pilot onwards was miles more palpable than anything this show has offered so far. Yes, Sleazy, I realize this show is playing with as many Big Questions as it can get its greedy little hands on, but the abstract is only worth as much as how well you can grasp that ether and channel it/ground it through characters and drama. Right now I'm running out of patience because it's only playing about these things when it's already suggested this near-infinite playground of potential. Would it be too much to ask that they grow up, dig in, and make some commitments already?

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 9:35 a.m. CST

    The waste of powers is part of the appeal with silver age supes

    by sideshowbob

    There's something innocent about in a 50's kind of way, or utterly pointless about it in a 90's kind of way. Plus, I think we're dealing with a world where there isn't much crime or disaster in the world thanks to Superman. We'll see him looking around with his super-vision and saying "yep, no more jobs out there for Superman today". I mean, look at all the awful shit going on in the DCU today that the modern, neutured Superman can't stop. He couldn't get up to the Watch Tower in time to stop a fucking rape of his friend's wife? Or any of the other nasty shit going on? Talk about a waste of power.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 9:37 a.m. CST

    Are Ninjas Still Cool?

    by hamgravy

    Doesn't it seem the least bit tired that New Avengers is dragging out of all things...Ninjas! What's new and cool about that? I'm still curious about how they totally exploded in American Pop culture in the 80s but Frank Miller certainly gave Daredevil and Wolverine an edge by having them hang with ninjas. But now, they're as corny as gunslingers without the distance to actually make them interesting again (Deadwood, Jonah Hex).

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 9:45 a.m. CST

    The Next Ninja

    by hamgravy

    So here's a question. Is there anything out in the world akin to ninjas that can be swiped and grafted onto American superhero comics to make them "cool" the way ninjas did in the 80s? They seemed totally new at the time, even apart from the Kung-Fu of the 70s. They were everywhere! The criteria seem to be that it needs to come from a no longer prevalent culture, nearly mythical, and kick-ass. Pirates are obviously the new archetype in pop culture used for laffs if you look at commercials, T-shirts, and Ben Stiller movies. Right now, my money is on Cosmonauts.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 9:54 a.m. CST

    History of Violence and DC's Showcase

    by amherst90jl

    First of all, AHOV was one of the worst movies I have ever sat through. The predictable moments and the stereotypes were as numerous as they were awful. The beginning scene, where the family huddles in the girls room? Almost made me throw up my popcorn because of it's sweetness and the director's obvious "here's the scene where I show what a close family they are before events break them apart!" The second you saw the lamest school bully to ever show up in any movie ever, did you not know for sure he would get his ass whipped by the son? Or the ending - wow, the little girl offers the first olive branch to dear old dad. How original. Heavy-handed, paint-by-numbers, predictable, horrible excuse for a movie, that could not be saved by some brief moments of gory violence and maria bello in a cheerleader's uniform. Add to the fact the fucked up story of the director having his wife come blow him on the set in front of the whole cast & crew as a tutorial for viggo and Bello makes me even sadder that I gave this idiot my money. Showcases: love this idea by DC. Couldn't bring myself to buy the Superman one, because I'm also not a fan of the silver age superman and the absurdity of his comics, but I purchased and am enjoying the Metamorpho issue, and can't wait for the Jonah Hex issue (hope you guys review both).

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 10:18 a.m. CST

    Nanites are the new ninjas.

    by Dave_F

    And talking about ninjas in NEW AVENGERS reminds me: one of the few Bendis projects openly lampooned by fans on his own boards is DAREDEVIL: NINJA. Even Bendis himself has joked about it on occasion. You'd think he'd keep a healthy distance from 'em, wouldn't you?

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 10:22 a.m. CST

    Shig, I don't get your nitpick.

    by Dave_F

    The art in DRAX *does* call to mind Cassaday and Land. Probably not quite of Cassaday's calibre, or Land's when he's on a good day, but I completely stand by the comparison. Similar levels of detail, similar approaches to realism, similar digitally-painted look. What am I missing?

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 10:32 a.m. CST

    Heh, I like this notion of the Silver Age power-wastefulness

    by Dave_F

    Not my thing, but it's a good way to couch it, Bob. Certainly Silver Age Supes looks like a lot more entertaining than today's mopey Man of Steel, but I hope it's not an either/or choice! It'll be interesting to see where Morrison's ALL-STAR SUPES falls in the scheme of things, as interviews definitely indicate a neo-Silver Age approach. I might be able to get into that, the mixture of Silver Age big ideas with Morrison's trademark humanism. He did scare me a bit, though, in that one interview where he pined for the old Superman story where Superman gained the ability to shoot miniature Supermen from his palm. That's...uh...wow.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 11:06 a.m. CST

    Dave

    by Shigeru

    Yeah I didn't really explain myself. You are right, the art in Drax is comparable to those 2 artists. I just meant.... wait... you meant that the artist on Drax was less photo-reference heavy than Greg Land, right? I thought you meant that Cassady used photo reference more than Land. Sorry. Yeah now I feel REAL smart. And since I don't watch Lost, I'm gonna go crawl back into my cave now. Cya next week!

  • But just to confirm..yeah, I meant DRAX guy's stuff looked like Land's without all the photo ref.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 11:28 a.m. CST

    Thanks Dave, and it is pretty silly when all is said and done.

    by Shigeru

    So...should I buy the Lost DVD set? Just out of the blue? I think I will.

  • So you might *should*, Shigeru. Wherever the series may end up, I can say that season one was bloody brilliant. Hell, the opening five minutes of the *first episode* are bloody brilliant.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 12:16 p.m. CST

    The regular LOST TalkBack's too spoiler-y for me.

    by Dave_F

    NT

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 12:27 p.m. CST

    About those interviews we talked about from WIZARD WORLD Chicago

    by Ambush Bug

    I know, IsTalkCheap/SeeThruThis/Annoying Fucking Troll, that in your world of instant gratification where all you have to do is yell up from the basement for mom to make you a turkey pot pie and she immediately skirts on down, pie in hand, after I get off of her to make sure your tummy is full, the idea of patience is as foreign as your ability to conduct an interesting and constructive conversation in these talkbacks. But in the real world, SeeThru, things such as interviews take time. Interviews were not conducted at the Wizard World con. Creators were approached and interviews were scheduled to be conducted at a later date. After said interviews are done, it will take more time to transcribe the interview, edit it, reedit it per the interviewee's approval, response questions will be made, and final clearance on that will have to occur...etc, etc. A lot of shit goes into interviews and they take time. You're not exposing some huge flaw at AICN Comics or making any relevant point about how "we pwomised an interview and, look, dey didn't doowit, they're big liars!" You're just showing how ignorant you are to the interview process. The interviews are on their way. The Wizard World Chicago report is basically a half year mark for us and the fallout from that con will be peppered throughout the column for the rest of the year. Patience please. Until then, enjoy trolling the talkbacks and being ignored by people who actually have interesting things to say. (Now that that's been said, I will join them in ignoring you. Enjoy the pot pie.)

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 1:11 p.m. CST

    Owned by Bug.

    by The Heathen

    Mmmm

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 1:46 p.m. CST

    mmm...pot pie

    by Darth Kal-El

    no seriously that sounds good

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 1:55 p.m. CST

    Thanks for the Showcase Presents review Prof.

    by superhero

    It just reminds me that despite how corny a lot of Superman's old conventions are they were and actually are a pretty entertaining read in the context of the times they were made in. I actually find a lot of that old stuff more entertaining to read than the new Superman books. They're just so bizarre that they make for fun reading...unlike the many of the Superman books of today which lack humor and that great sense of adventure that many of the Silver Age stuff had. Don't get me wrong...I still can't stand stuff like Bippo the supermonkey or whatever he's called when worked into a modern day context...but for some reason in those silver age stories stuff like that woked. Maybe it's because the writers and fans weren't taking comics SO seriously....I dunno. But for some reason I do get a kick outta reading some of that Silver Age stuff. I'm gonna have to pick up showcase right quick!

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 2:24 p.m. CST

    Young Avengers--muy good! New Avengers-pura basura

    by Homer Sexual

    Yes, the latest issue of New Avengers really sucked and made me think that, after giving in to buying it at issue #4, I may have to soon drop it again. And, people, make no mistake: A year from now this book may very well be nowhere, but Bendis will jump ship before sales dwindle too far. So maybe a drop (not expecting a big drop) would help get something going on! And NOT bringing DD into NA. Then, really, nothing will EVER happen. YA-I was surprised that this book dropped the ambiguous duo thing so quickly, but I do find it refreshing. This is a real favorite of mine! Give Hawkingbird a code-name, says I! Finalmente, these were some excellent reviews. Sleazy wins "Review of the Week" and maybe even "Review of the Year" for that Daredevil piece. As well-explained as the Drax review was, I still can't work up any sort of interest in Drax.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 2:30 p.m. CST

    please ban Prof C!

    by Homer Sexual

    Not only does Prof C stretch out the talkback (which I bet pisses off every single talkbacker except him), he isn't even sorry and gives everyone a big "Fuck You" so, ahem, Fuck Him!

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 2:42 p.m. CST

    yeah dave i saw the "ass-guardian" thing too

    by Darth Kal-El

    im glad theyre being open about it and not making a big deal like when northstar came out.****heathen no dump taking coments this week from anybody but i agree that the DD cap talky-talky was a little overmuch. and yes bendis has to use cog smooch at least once. and i love the term "bendii"! that shit is hilarious!

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 4:30 p.m. CST

    there will never be a spider-ham film

    by fried samurai

    The subject matter is too controversial and still way ahead of it's time..Is there no way to shrink the talkback I really hate when it gets streched...I hope History Of Violence makes enough cash I'd love to see some more non-superhero films get made.Last Of The Independents and David Boring would make cool films.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 4:38 p.m. CST

    and how is he "guarding" ass if hes either penetrating or having

    by Darth Kal-El

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 4:52 p.m. CST

    Maybe he's guarding it 'cause he, like, owns it.

    by Dave_F

    That's my interpretation, anyway.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 5:26 p.m. CST

    The DD Review.

    by Buzz Maverik

    Some of you have wondered why I don't review comic books any more. It's because I've found a higher purpose with a group of people who care about, starting with the man at the top. I'm now a Bendii. I was going through the airport, kind of depressed, and there they were, with their shaved heads, selling American flags. They could see I was a little down and asked me if I wanted to talk. I went over to their temple (which is shaped like a giant bowling ball) with them and they gave me a cup of grape Tang and we I told them my troubles. They should me that the @$$holes weren't my real friends and the only real friend any one has is a guy they call Bee Emm Bee. After the necessary isolation, sleep deprivation and starvation (I admitt, I had to sneak out to get cigarettes) I gave my life over to Bri. And I haven't looked back. I learned that even when Bri's comics seem boring and pointless and repetitive and prententious, even when they seem like Mamet pastiches by someone who hasn't really ever read or heard any of David Mamet's work, they're really not. You see, Bri doesn't actually have to do anything to be great. Marvel, which Bri secretly owns, could publish a comic that was blank except for the words "Written by Brian Michael Bendis" and it would top all the collective works of mankind. Sleazy G., obviously a non-believer who will never attain Nothingness (is that double negative; I will pray to Bri to find out)did nothing wrong with the way he wrote his review. No, Sleazy's wrongs were that his review wasn't full of praise for the glory that is Bri! You see, unless it worships Bri, it is Not of Bri and must be cast out. I go now to do nothing but talk much.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 5:43 p.m. CST

    Buzz the Bendi

    by Darth Kal-El

    another reason this is the best talkback on the interweb

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 5:49 p.m. CST

    i wish more people got into azzarello

    by Darth Kal-El

    so we could start calling ourselves "Azzareleots"

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 5:52 p.m. CST

    Wow. Respond to a guy once, and you supposedly "whine after eve

    by SleazyG.

    Historical revisionism at its worst. Kinda like the revisionism where you say "we talked to people about future interviews" and it becomes "you didn't give us the reviews you said you already conducted. Or kinda like "we went and ate" becomes "you ate by yourself". Ahhh, you gotta love people who hate you because they lack the ability to FUCKING READ FOR FUCKING CONTENT. I mean, I'd point out things like "sometimes you hold the review until it's timed closer to the release of the product" (for reference, please see the Gregory Raven interview timed w/the release of THE GIFT #13, I believe it was). After all, what's the point? If I were to say something like that, it wouldn't be FUCKING READ FOR FUCKING CONTENT anyway.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 5:57 p.m. CST

    Actually, Darth, We Of The Chosen...

    by Buzz Maverik

    ...have retained a lawyer in the hopes that this "Azzarello" as he calls himself with stop using the name "Brian". In related news, Chris Singer's SUPERMAN film looks great and Ernie Cox recently spoke at my improv group and answered questions about playing Strkyer in X2. Craig Austin Greene has also said that he will definitely not participate in any BEVERLY HILLS 90210 reunions. Meanwhile, Guiliano K. Vaughn revealed upcoming plans for both RUNAWAYS and Y THE LAST MAN.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 6 p.m. CST

    Speaking of Craig Austin Greene, Buzz...

    by SleazyG.

    ...don't forget to catch him in his new co-starring role on ABC's "Freddie", starring Freddie Prinze Jr. Apparently, it's what they call a "comedy". Freddie Fever--Catch It!

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 6:24 p.m. CST

    the azzareleaots will crush the bendi!

    by Darth Kal-El

    it will be a battle like unto those foretold in the scriptures of every holy book know to man! and it shall come to pass that an ass shall find a guardian!

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 6:27 p.m. CST

    true story

    by Darth Kal-El

    freddie prinze jr, or as i like to call him FPj attended high school in newq mexico at a school called la cueva.i used to work with a guy who went to school with him and he said he was the biggest pussy in the world and was generally disliked and kind of picked on.but who knows tho, the guy who told me that was kind of a lame ass himself.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 6:28 p.m. CST

    and in other comic related news

    by Darth Kal-El

    any guesses who ronin is?

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 6:48 p.m. CST

    Ronin is...

    by SleazyG.

    ...Deathlok. You heard it here first.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 6:52 p.m. CST

    Thalya

    by El Vale

    Well let me exercise my ambiguity here and respond with the same question: You clearly have a place in your heart for Buffy and Angel. No i would rather put a gun to my testicles than watch those shows, but you like them so i ask you...are you connected to those characters? So i guess my answer's yes. When i saw Locke smiling amidst all the chaos, shocked because he could move his legs...i knew that i was watching something special. Oh and Kate is the most beautifulest woman in the entire cosmos and perhaps beyond and i want to marry her, so there you go, i'm pretty connected as you say.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 7:10 p.m. CST

    darth

    by blackthought

    darth, you forgot about that lost chapter in the scriptures. it states that after the desecators of sequential storytelling, the bendi...and the azzareleaots battle and that ass is found a gaurdian...out of the mist and wreakage will emerge a prophet named alan of the moore's who shall lead his flock and his accolytes to purge the world of the remnants of the bendi and azzareleaots and the stragglers...IT SHALL COME!...and on a less erious note, Dave...i loved Drax during the Life and Death of Captain Marvel as the killed earthman Art Douglas and then ressurected by the leader of the Titans...The Mentor Alar's to combat his evil son Thanos if my memory serves me. I enjoyed when he was re-united with his daughter whom grew up on Titan named Moon Dragon. anyway In that series I remember him always being intelligent and hot-headed...so my question is this, Drax's intelligence and awareness based on battling...is that something I missed long ago or some new wringle added to the character?

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 7:16 p.m. CST

    Bendi, Azzareleots? What about the Whedons?

    by The Heathen

    Oh, yeah

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 7:21 p.m. CST

    for Frank Quitely-philes

    by Gus Nukem

    http://tinyurl.com/9sdj9 **** interview at Silver Bullet comics .com **** Warning!!! Toxical levels of awesomeness!!!

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 7:39 p.m. CST

    Attack of the Bendii....

    by hawksquill

    To enter the sect, never read (or review!) a single issue of DD by itself again. Read 'em all back to back, it's the only way to enjoy.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 7:44 p.m. CST

    i didnt forget blackthought

    by Darth Kal-El

    i just didnt mention it because everybody knows the scripture about Alan of the Moores.and yes the scriptures do mention these whedonites "in cloaks of brown" but it is unclear what role they ultimately play.*****all of me was pretty twixed with serenity,including titties

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 8:03 p.m. CST

    twixed, good word...

    by blackthought

    and i have this odd feeling that ronin is...............BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS........i don't know why though.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 8:10 p.m. CST

    Twixed..

    by Thalya

    Peanut butter or caramel?

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 8:10 p.m. CST

    I think the actual word used is "twixt"

    by Darth Kal-El

    kaylee makes a coment in serenity that she hasnt had anything "twixt my nethers" that doesnt run on batteries in a while something like that. heathen has been blatantly misusing it as 'twixed' as in 'i twixed my girlfriend but good last night'. being the loyal cog smooch that i am i started blatantly misusing it too!

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 8:12 p.m. CST

    i couldve have sworn...

    by Darth Kal-El

    ...that when u see ronin from behind he has a tear on his mask and it looks like "black" hair coming through. by which i mean black person hair. but when he(she?)talks to the team i got the vibe it was suposed to be an asian accent.therefore ronin is...."AfroSamurai"!!!u heard it here first

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 8:15 p.m. CST

    or he could be

    by Darth Kal-El

    the poor child of the who had to grow up in orphanages and the streets fighting for survival when he was left alone after his parents, the internet, where TORN IN HALF!!!!

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 8:17 p.m. CST

    Ronin is...

    by Gus Nukem

    somebody whose identity eludes me. For clues, I 'd start here : www.realultimatepower.net

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 8:25 p.m. CST

    C'mon guys...

    by Ambush Bug

    Ronin is Elektra. Nuff said. Read the issue with this in mind and it fits.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 8:33 p.m. CST

    i dont know bug i thought that too

    by Darth Kal-El

    and ive heard it explained that the curves dont show cuz its body armor but im not buying it it seems too obvious.i think both elektra and daredevil are a red herring.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 8:38 p.m. CST

    Well, I still think it's Elektra...

    by Ambush Bug

    Bendis wants to make it a team of heavy hitters recognizable to the masses. And Elektra has been in two big budget films. Two shitty big budget films, but big budget films nonetheless. Plus take the long black hair, the fact that Daredevil says that he knows a "friend" that can help, and the fact that Ronin is knee deep in Hydra/Hand business (from Millar's WOLVERINE arc) and all fingers point to Elektra.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 8:39 p.m. CST

    Thank you Gus

    by El Vale

    For the Quitely awesomeness.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 10:07 p.m. CST

    interesting idea on ronin

    by blackthought

    ambush...though i'm leaning more towards uncle ben.

  • Oct. 6, 2005, 11:05 p.m. CST

    Ronin

    by hamgravy

    Given the major clues in this issue of New Avengers, if it does turn out to be Elektra, the Ronin reveal would be as lame-o obvious as the Scarlet Witch reveal from Disassembled. Plus, as someone pointed out regarding Shining Knight's (Spoiler) really being a woman, it's just false to draw someone as a man and then reveal them to be otherwise. Bendis has denied every logical guess (every Marvel Martial Artist) but lying to compensate for bad writing isn't beneath him. I liked his Daredevil and really liked Alias, but, Disassembled, House of M, and now this all reek of hack work.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 2:30 a.m. CST

    Drax was awesome in that whole Infinity Gauntlet stuff

    by barryap

    Unfortunately that's about when I stopped reading comics.

  • You really know how to hurt a guy, Homer. But yeah, I was never really into the whole "Starlin scene" m'self (though there was a brief flirtation, circa THANOS QUEST and INFINITY GAUNTLET). What I *am* a fan of is superhero sci-fi growing out of the old cliches, and this series has some possibilities on that front. I'm also weirdly fascinated by the fact that Drax is the only *hero* to sport purple and green, colors traditionally associated with villainy (see also, Lex Luthor, Molecule Man, Brainiac, Parasite, Kang, Fin Fang Foom, etc.). I think Drax makes it work, though. Hmm, and the Hulk too. S'pose when you consider the fact that they've each stood against their fellow heroes at one time or another, the villainous purple and green ensemble becomes even more fitting. Am I the only one who thinks about this shit?

  • "Wringle"? ;) No, really, I'm not a typo Nazi, I just like the word "wringle." And to answer the question, yep, that particular interpretation of Drax's intelligence seems to be a new take. I poked around and found an interview with writer Keith Giffen. He sez: "He starts off, you know, big, dumb, green Drax. The typical Drax that we've seen. And somewhere along the line -- I forget who came up with the idea -- but we thought, what if it was ... well, you know how with Hulk, the more you beat on him, the more mad he gets? The stronger he gets? What if the more you beat on Drax, the more intelligent he gets? So, you can literally beat sense into him." I think it's bizarre, but not a bad interpretation of the character's mercurial intelligence. Full interview: http://tinyurl.com/cpvrf

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 3:30 a.m. CST

    So what was Drax's status in INFINITY GAUNTLET?

    by Dave_F

    I've got an early '80s issue of AVENGERS where Drax actually gets iced by daughter Moondragon when she's in a power-hungry mode, and in that story (an excellent one, by the way), his intelligence is pretty much normal human. I think it was his creator, Starlin, who resurrected him later in SILVER SURFER as a dumb guy, seemingly off-kilter from having been dead for a few years. Is that the version that made it into INFINITY GAUNTLET? I remember thinking it was a pretty funny take at the time, but in retrospect...mebbe a bit too goofy.

  • Isn't the answer obvious? It's Fancy Dan from the Spidey bad guy team The Enforcers - DUH! I mean, the guy knows judo. Judo! And he might be short, but lookee him here, flattening Spider-Man with Deadly Judo Kick! http://tinyurl.com/79gug Hmm...and so I'm studying the picture too, and I learn elsewhere that Fancy Dan's only supposed to be 5'5", but you look at that picture and...what is he, a fucking gnome?!

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 4:27 a.m. CST

    Beating the sense into somebody like Drax...

    by SleazyG.

    ...is just what the youth of today need.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 4:29 a.m. CST

    You're right about Elektra, Hamgravy...

    by SleazyG.

    ...but seriously: did he really say Marvel Martial Artist was out? Cuz if he did, well, wow.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 8:30 a.m. CST

    I tried to start a cult based around Warren Ellis.

    by rev_skarekroe

    We called ourselves Ellis' Sons, but everyone thought we were into Harlan so we just called it quits.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 8:58 a.m. CST

    "Bendis has denied every logical guess"

    by Decepticon

    Did that include a surviving member of the ninja clan led by Stick, Daredevil's mentor? They dressed in white and were practically immortal -- Stone is the only name I remember (maybe the others were called Paper, Rock and Scissors). Bendis has already nixed that idea, right?

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 9:17 a.m. CST

    Ninja Party

    by hamgravy

    This list of non-Ronins was compiled on an Avengers Fan Site based on interviews and exchanges with Bendis in which he is quoted as saying that no one has guessed correctly. Of course, Elektra is not on the list and neither is Stone. Stone's a good guess - I thought all of those Stick guys were dead. But didn't they all have the personality of, well, a rock. FYI, I was just informed that last year there was a spate of attacks in my local park by a "ninja-clad assailant." Time to break out those old climbing shoes and throwing stars. Daredevil Wolverine Iron Fist Nick Fury Black Widow (in a lot of padding) Shang Chi Moonknight Hawkeye Taskmaster Silver Samurai Libra (a dark horse contender, but one I am sure old school Avenger fans would have liked to see)

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 9:20 a.m. CST

    Libra?

    by hamgravy

    Sorry 'bout the blob of a list. It was a cut 'n paste. The comment about Libra isn't mine either. I have no idea who that is.

  • Did ever occur to you guys that by going on and on against "Bendii" and their evangelistic fervor (which I have never witnessed....), you maybe, just MAYBE are sinking to their level? That is; the level of absolutist, party-line-toeing finger-pointing. I know I know, you are just lampooning the fans who defend every single aspect of BMB with a frothing fury, justly so. But I enjoy the heck out of Ult. Spider-Man and Daredevil. And sometimes I feel like I shouldn't really say so around here. Sometimes I'm even tempted to apologize for liking them. Which is, let me tell ya, Bullshit with a capital B.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 10:34 a.m. CST

    Oh, and...

    by Shigeru

    the only way BMB could get me excited about House of M is if every issue came with a free, wet, nude Kylie Minogue.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 11:31 a.m. CST

    I wish Shigeru.

    by The Heathen

    I

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 11:33 a.m. CST

    Sleazy G, chill out!

    by Homer Sexual

    You write many great reviews, and this week was extra good! I read comics for content, and Bendis' final arc on Powers Vol. 1 (started with naughty monkeys) is one of my favorite stories ever. But he has many weaknesses his Bendii will never admit. And please, please don't respond to IsTalkCheap. However, we could make a list of how many other User IDs that poster has had-I can think of three just off the top of my head. Regarding the identity of Ronin-I can't find it in myself to care, really. Elektra does seem a likely suggestion. Whoever it is, "Yawn." I liked the Sentry storyline, though.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 11:41 a.m. CST

    Re: Thalya on OMAC #6

    by The Heathen

    I actually liked everything besides the last page. Ugghh! But the gathering of heroes was cool. I loved that splash/spread page with Wonder Woman, Green Lanterns, etc. I was a little confused about the location of that group and the Teen Titans. The one group was in the desert right? Libya or someplace. I thought the Titans were in San Fran, but then it looked like they were in the desert too?

  • Dude, Vroom wants to marry Bendis when he grows up. Buzz once reviewed a Bendis book every week for a month--and liked every single one of 'em. I've said over and over again that I absolutely loved ALIAS (but PULSE sucks donkey). The problem I have is that the guy is pretty good at a few things, but pretty awful at a few others. Those of us capable of critical thought can, in fact, like one issue written by a guy and not like the next--even on the same title, like, say, NEW AVENGERS or DAREDEVIL. I don't hate the guy--he's actually very kind and personable and charming. I just hate the kissass sycophants who won't stop swinging off his nuts and treating him like he walks on water (by which I mean Mr. Quesada, among others). I think the guy's a decent writer with some good ideas, but he's dead wrong for superhero comics of any sort and has no business being the guy who decides the direction of the entire Marvel Universe. But shit, man, if we all agreed on everything I'd leave. Read what you want, like what you want, and talk about it. Just try to avoid ignoring everything I actually say and then calling me a poodle, cuz that's just sad, really.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 12:01 p.m. CST

    I'm chilled, Homer.

    by SleazyG.

    And thanks. And yeah, I know almost everybody here reads for content.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 12:17 p.m. CST

    Heathen

    by Thalya

    Too much Sasha and Batman, not enough other heroes with pagespace if you ask me.. I think it might've just been Kid Flash, who can pretty much be in two places at once. Poor Booster.. *sigh*

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 12:18 p.m. CST

    I always WANT to like Bendis or any writer for that matter, but

    by The Heathen

    that isn

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 12:26 p.m. CST

    Is Booster going back? Back to the future?

    by The Heathen

    Yeah, I hope they don't give Sasha too much more time during this event. She bores me. Although I did like the warmth of her skin tone returning when she and Bruce kissed, but isn't he suppposed to be with Selina in JLA? Batman's continuity is as bad as Wolverines right now isn't it? He's in OMAC, JLA, and about 5 of his own books!!! Just to try and wrap my mind around it do you (Lady Calculator) think OMAC happened before or after this Crisis of Conscience JLA arc? Or both, or neither I guess? I've applauded DC for trying to tie things together before, but I don't know if they can make sense of all this Batman action. I hope Booster plays a cool role in IC. I like Booster, especially after that epof JLU and if OMAC did do anything 100% right imo it was making Booster into a stronger character.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 12:27 p.m. CST

    Sleazy

    by Shigeru

    Exactly! Thanks, I hope what you wrote is what most people think, and people judge the stories and the individual books, not the entire man. Just seems like sometimes people skate on thin ice around here with that. Out of curiosity you said you think he's "dead wrong for superhero comics", does this mean you don't like Ult. Spidey? I've been with that book from the start and I feel kinda attached, tho it has had a couple dips. Oh and Heathen- my wife is fine with me keeping my own personal harem on the side. I can't be expected to give up my cadre of geishas so easily now can I?? (jk!)

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 12:40 p.m. CST

    oh man...

    by Shigeru

    I said I didn't want to encourage TalkIsCheap!! See the difference is some people can agree to disagree (and sometimes we do disagree a lot, but that doesn't change the fact that we're being civil!)

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 1:22 p.m. CST

    Not ashamed to like Bendis when he's good, but he lacks the

    by The Heathen

    He's inconsistent from issue to issue. I like Bendis most of the time on New Avengers, half the time on The Pulse, on one issue of HoM (which is where most of my anger for him is coming from), and I haven

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 1:30 p.m. CST

    Well they say...

    by Thalya

    Crisis of Conscience occurs 24 hours before the start of Infinite Crisis #1 (Infinite Crisis #1 next week, plus VU #6! Woo!), so.. OMAC basically has to happen before CoC..that way Bruce can heal after the beating Supes gave him and the Watchtower is still intact. And as for his love life, Bruce is just being a cad now and should never have been with Sasha to begin with (Bruce&Selina 4eva!). Booster better be the 'time-lost hero' mentioned in the solicits for IC #2, there's been too much emotional buildup with him, plus I just wanted more of him in OMAC. BTW, theory for 52, the series. Is it just me or has there been a ton of chess imagery and whatnot throughout all the DCU books? I'm beginning to think the 4-6 characters featured in 52 will be people like Oliver Queen, Jim Rook (Nightmaster in DoV), Arthur King (Merlyn the Archer), etc..

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 1:35 p.m. CST

    Haven't really read ULT. SPIDEY, Shigeru.

    by SleazyG.

    I missed the first few issues and never really bothered to play catch-up. A lot of people seem to like it, and I'll grant it seems like Spidey is one of the few mainstream Marvel characters he writes well. I may grab a trade or two one day, we'll see. I really didn't care for his ULTIMATE SECRET SIX, though--it had a lot of the same bad habits that plague a lot of his writing, and it bummed me out.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 1:44 p.m. CST

    Awww. The poor widdle fraigle troll.

    by SleazyG.

    The wonderful thing about persecution complexes is they're so goddamned self-fulfilling. Ooh, look a windmill! Who knew trolls could joust?

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 1:46 p.m. CST

    Bendii

    by El Vale

    I've always wondered if the bendii really exist or if they're just a myth created by the @$$holes to adorn their reviews a bit. I guess the Bendis board would be a good place to find out, but i can't stand other boards. What i do know is that even tho' Bendis hating was at an all time high when i first peeked in here and it seemed like every single review said something about Bendis even if the book reviews had nothing to do with him (if the comic bad: this is like reading a Bendis book, except not so bad, and if the comic was good: this is what good writing is. Bendis take notice), i've always shared my love of Daredevil and Powers and such in the talkbacks and i haven't gotten shit from anyone, and no one's called me a Bendis apologist or anything retarded like that.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 1:51 p.m. CST

    Ultimate Spidey

    by El Vale

    I could never get into Ult. Spidey because i hate Bagley. And i think i'm the only one.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 1:57 p.m. CST

    OMAC

    by El Vale

    Ok from what i've pieced together this whole mini series was like 20 bucks worth of plot point setup for Infinite Crisis. So, i mean, doesn't that suck? I'd be pissed, what a ripoff. In my book, that should be considered bad storytelling.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 2:29 p.m. CST

    Ult. Spidey

    by Shigeru

    Ultimate Six bummed me out too Sleazy. I didn't even finish it I found it so...blah. Hairsine's art didn't help matters either. But Ult. Spider-Man... I would suggest you just buy all the trades, but that's a lot of cash. Hell eff it buy all the friggin trades! It's heart-warming, emotional, action packed and one of the few comics that makes me laugh out loud on a regular basis. Low points for me would be the carnage arc and the hobgoblin arc. But both had their moments. High points would be most everything else, including the doc ock stuff, the "hollywood" arc, issue #13 (which is killer)... And Vale, you ARE the only person on the planet that doesn't like Bagley. That's okay I forgive you.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 2:31 p.m. CST

    Oh yeah

    by Shigeru

    and the 2 issue Wolverine "jump the shark" story. Featuring the funniest last panel EVER.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 3:09 p.m. CST

    El Vale

    by rev_skarekroe

    "Hate"'s a strong word, but I'm not a fan of Bagley's work either.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 3:50 p.m. CST

    i agree with vale

    by Darth Kal-El

    i have always been able to come in here and not feel like i have to like or dislike a certain book or creator. and shigeru seriously if anything i ever posted personally made u feel that way i apologize. i have mentioned before that i like hanging out on this board because everyone is so friendly and civil to each other and that remains true.i like a lot of bendis books and a lot of other comics as well.ive always thought the back and forth with the reviewers about bendis was funny and honestly the term 'bendii' just makes me laugh. i would hate for this board to turn into the name calling BULLSHIT thats so prevalent in the other boards here on this site. when istalk says "Sorry to interrupt the TalkBack, please return to the usual asskissing, ego stroking, and self-important blather from the usual suspects."i take offense. im here daily posting in between my calls here at work so i have to assume im one of your 'usual suspects'?in all honesty if u dont like it then leave. im sure better discussions can be had without that 'AICN TROLL' bullshit hangin in the air.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 4:01 p.m. CST

    vale mi amigo

    by Darth Kal-El

    u dont like bagley?!da fug?!!i have always been a huge bagley fan and i love ult spidey! one of the reasons i initially started on the book was because of the art. even before i had even heard of bendis i was hooked beacue of the art. what have u thought of the warriors arc so far?and let me second the vote to buy the trades.in fact barnes and noble has a huge hardcover of like the first 37 issues if i remmeber correclty and its only like 35.00

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 4:03 p.m. CST

    the warriors arc question was for shigeru-

    by Darth Kal-El

    sorry for any inconvenience

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 4:05 p.m. CST

    Well, it's true, I like the "veteran" reviewers a lot.

    by Homer Sexual

    But I don't pretend that every review they write is gold. I can live with being labeled a kiss-@$$, considering the source. And I don't want to put anyone down, but two of the newer reviewers are very much not my cup of tea. Finally, I am proud to say that I am still using my original User ID here at AICN.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 4:16 p.m. CST

    "the way he's portrayed around here, you'd think he can

    by The Heathen

    The hell? What da fug are u talkin' bout? Course he can strang a sentance t'getha. Yes, it be true

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 4:20 p.m. CST

    Cog $mooches and @$$holes

    by The Heathen

    u know i luuvvvvv u!!! *** Please return to our regular scheduled ALL WEEK TB.

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 5:10 p.m. CST

    right back at ya heathen you nether twixting bastid!

    by Darth Kal-El

  • Oct. 7, 2005, 6:52 p.m. CST

    Yes, Vale, The Bendii Exist & They Are Bad For Bendis' Caree

    by Buzz Maverik

    Like Sleazy said, January of this year, I reviewed all five books Bendis wrote for Marvel. I gave every single one of them a positive review and recommendation...however, I also mentioned some weak points, some questionable judgements, some things that needed improvement. From the threads they started on the Bendis board and the shit storm of e-mails I received, you'd have thought I'd have used BMB's bald head to plunge my clogged toilet. I liked the books. I praised the books. But because I didn't surrender my brain or ask others to surrender their's, I got every stupid, syncophantic Bendii rushing to li'l Bri's defense. It was fun to respond sarcastically to each e-mail "Yer so-called review almost made me stop reading comics altogether"..."Almost? Well that only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades, so out of curiousity, what could I have said to seal the deal?" "You're just jealous of Bendis!"..."Of course I am. He has you!" "The only thing I've seen less funny than yer review was GIGLI which my girlfriend made me see"..."Ha! Ha! You saw GIGLI. Yer whipped, dude. And by an imaginary girl." I told many of them if they really liked Bendis work, as I do, they wouldn't worship him blindly, that they were doing the kind of thing that sucked the potential and the futures out of guys like John Byrne, Chris Claremont, Frank Miller and Rob Liefeld. The Bendii are going to turn Bendis into a self-parody yet.

  • Oct. 8, 2005, 12:38 a.m. CST

    let the twixting commence!

    by blackthought

  • Oct. 8, 2005, 3:04 a.m. CST

    Ultimate Bagley

    by El Vale

    I was thinking about all this, me disliking Bagley and not reading the book because of him...and then i remembered i got through fucking Invisibles vol. 1 with the fucking Jill Thompson art and shit...So i'm gonna give Ult. Spidey another chance, i have like the first 40 issues in a cd.

  • Oct. 8, 2005, 3:08 a.m. CST

    Buzz

    by El Vale

    You seriously got hate mail like that? That's sick! I've read a lot of stuff about Bendis that i disagree with wholeheartedly from the @$$holes but it never occured to me to write them an angry email telling them they were wrong. People have too much time on their hands.

  • Oct. 8, 2005, 7:58 p.m. CST

    Teen Titans Go Question

    by Homer Sexual

    I am asking here because i don't see a column in coaxial: Is The Brain voiced by Stephen Hawking? I watched two episodes today and it seemed to be him. It was friggin hilarious.

  • Oct. 9, 2005, 1:45 a.m. CST

    yay

    by blackthought

  • Oct. 9, 2005, 3:38 a.m. CST

    It's already overdue

    by El Vale

    My friend Darth, i congratulate you, your team has classified to the world cup. Quite worthy are you. My friend Blackthought, i'm afraid we're going nowhere and history will most likely repeat itself. Deservedly so. The game was shit. The team was shit.

  • Oct. 9, 2005, 7:38 a.m. CST

    Buy many issues of Cable & Deadpool

    by irishfella

    If anybody hasn't checked out Cable & Deadpool yet you should as it absolutely golden on every page. It's hilarious to read and has optimum levels of drama too. It's excellent!

  • Oct. 9, 2005, 10:58 p.m. CST

    vale...

    by blackthought

    i'm in pain man...we have to win our last game and hope uruguay and chile don't get a result...jeez, this sucks...where is pibe when you need him? and when did ecaudor and such replace us in the pecking order? oh the glory days. hey, any shane black fans? cuz he's coming to my school to shoot the shit...i wonder if i get out of my animation class for that.

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 8:51 a.m. CST

    speaking of Quitely (a lie!) ...

    by Gus Nukem

    have you guys seen this ... www.newsarama.com/dcnew/allstarsuperman/issue1_preview.htm

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 8:56 a.m. CST

    the warriors arc ( a late response)

    by Shigeru

    I've been enjoying it. Not sure where this whole moon knight stuff is going, and I'll admit I'm not terribly interested in the character at this point. But on the flip side I am diggin the Shang Chi and Iron Fist stuff. And the Black Cat being back is great! Throwing a monkey wrench into Spidey/Peter's life is what Bendis is really good at, and Black Cat is a big sexy monkey wrench. Plenty of funny in these ish's too.

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 11:16 a.m. CST

    good monday morning all

    by blackthought

    what's the latest?

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 11:44 a.m. CST

    Hey, I didn't see a lot of twixting this weekend!

    by The Heathen

    Ah, I was busy too. Loved your responses to the Bendii Buzz, especially the Gigli one. Gold I tell ya. He should have gotten an imaginary one, there awesome! I read some books this weekend, but I don't even remember which ones to be honest, and I swear boos weren't involved. Ooh, just remembered! The HoM Wolverine issue I read and I think it might have been all right if HoM wasn't such a stinker. Outsiders new issue was okay. Still liking the art, but the story was basically a set up for the Fearsome Five and a battle at Alcatraz (I think). I'll chime in later with the others I read that are slowly coming back to me.

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 1:18 p.m. CST

    And That My Friends, Is The Difference Between A Bendis Fan & A

    by Buzz Maverik

    How desperate do you have to be to send hate mail to a reviewer? Many of the letter writers took pains to mention their girlfriends or wives, and I usually responded that e-mails to comic critics really impressed the ladies. I can see grousing on a messageboard, or in the talkbacks but these guys took time outta their day to defend their man. Fortunately, you mess with the buzz and you get da stinger, ya know what I'm sayin' here? I've only got a fraction of the hate mail that guys like Bug and Vroom (who is a serious Bendis fan and a semi-personal friend of the Bald One) get because I ignored his Marvel stuff up until last January. Does it hurt our feelings? I won't speak for the other guys, but for me, I'll say,"No." I sorta thrive on stuff like that, but it's puzzling and depresses me about the Bendii. Most Bendis fans just state why they disagree, what they like about Bendis,etc and they're usually right. I'm actually fascinated with the Bendii. Sincerely. Because I'm more interested in comic book professionals than I am the comics but since someone brilliant already thought of Kavelier and Clay, I'm more interested in the fans, which span a wide range of types. We all know the cliches, but that's just the surface. I suspect that with "creator" message boards, aside from the majority of members who are intelligent, dedicated fans, you get a huge number of people looking for identity and belonging. It's frightening, this need for leadership. Chuck is prophet; Tyler Durden could be real. I used to post a bunch of spoof shit all over AICN but I scaled back to the comic column about 4 years ago. Kids were sincerely writing "Buzz" asking the meaning of life. I had to drop the act and say, "Look, I just make fun of pop culture in my overly abundant spare time. These are just jokes, mostly bad ones!" And that's nothing compared to what even comic book writers get. The further up you go, the worse it gets. Filmmakers Francis Ford Coppola and John Milius have chided George Lucas for not starting a religion. He might have a shot. Bendis could start a minor cult if he wanted, though.

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 1:53 p.m. CST

    we made it!

    by Darth Kal-El

    its been a few years since we were able to go to world cup so thats exciting. i finally finished lost season 1 and started watching season 2 that i had saved on my tivo.wow this is great stuff!didnt read any comics this weekend but i plan to get to the store hoepefully tonight. hope everyone is good and had a great weekend. mondays are usually busy here at the office so i will pop in sporadically throughout the day. have a good monday @$$es and cogs

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 2:06 p.m. CST

    We suck

    by El Vale

    The aquafag beat us this weekend with just 9 posts. 9! And we call ourselves all weekers...

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 2:44 p.m. CST

    @$$holes Roundtable for Infinite Crisis #1

    by The Heathen

    If not, I'm requesting it @$$es. Even if it's good, average, or really bad - let's hear everyone's comments. Think of how fun the last Roundtable was? HoM #1. Classic. Any chances of this happening? *** 9 posts?! Well

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 2:45 p.m. CST

    well i've done my part vale

    by blackthought

    shane black is throwing a screening of kiss kiss bang at a theatre by my school and he's speaking tomorrow at my school too...and well i snagged a shitload of tickets to go see if for free...so vale if you can swing by...then fly back to colombia and root that we kill paraguay and argentina do in uruguay for us and ecuador hold chile...god one game settles it on.

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 3:28 p.m. CST

    Who's Shane Black?

    by El Vale

    Sounds like a plan, tho', Blackthought!

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 6:19 p.m. CST

    i hope u guys make it too balckthought and vale

    by Darth Kal-El

    how far away from qualifying are u?

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 6:52 p.m. CST

    boring ass monday...

    by Darth Kal-El

    "What are you retarded? its the godamn money shot" http://superdickery.com/seduction/5.html

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 7 p.m. CST

    Darth

    by El Vale

    We need to Beat Paraguay in Asuncion and Argentina to beat Uruguay...and i think we also need Chile to lose. 4 years ago the same thing happened and Argentina helped Uruguay so they'd qualify and we wouldn't. No one came out and confessed it but everyone noticed. That's why i hate those fuckers.

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 7:12 p.m. CST

    wow vale

    by Darth Kal-El

    man thats a lot of things u need! either way man i hope u guys make it. as for argentina some of my best friends are argentinos but as a general rule i hate the fuckers too!

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 10:35 p.m. CST

    Speculation before the book hits?

    by Thalya

    So, for those reading Villains United, anyone want to guess/place bets on who'll turn out to be Mockingbird before issue 6 hits stands Wednesday and we're all spoiled on an inconsistent basis? This way we still have at least a day to all be spoiler virgins. My guess on Mockingbird is Mr. X/alternate-universe combat-suit Lex and/or Calculator (go Noah!). What does everyone else think? And, er...um, go soccer fans!

  • Oct. 10, 2005, 11:55 p.m. CST

    Mockingbird is...

    by Prof C

    Luthor. He's playing both sides because he's a sick, vicious bastard.

  • Oct. 11, 2005, 12:40 a.m. CST

    mockingbird is...

    by blackthought

    batman!...and yes..FUTBOL/SOCCER is definately worth shouting out...huge day wednesday...argies better play it straight.

  • Oct. 11, 2005, 4:24 a.m. CST

    My bet for Mockingbird is...

    by Ambush Bug

    The Joker. He's the only major villain yet to play a part in this whole vast tapestry. I guess we'll find out the truth tomorrow.

  • Oct. 11, 2005, 9:09 a.m. CST

    i can see that bug

    by blackthought

    i've been leaning towards that too, seeing how the joker has been suspiciously absent...then i think, hmmmmmm...could the joker restrain himself from causing mayhem first hand for so long and just lurk in the shadows? who knows...though i always thought he'd have a rather large role in this crisis.

  • Oct. 11, 2005, 9:23 a.m. CST

    I bet..

    by Thalya

    ..Joker's going to be more involved with the whole Jason Todd angle (what if they actually kill him? That would be huge, and for a Crisis of this magnitude you've got to have some really big deaths). One, would he have access to the kind of tech that Mockingbird does? Two, would he know about the House of Secrets? The clues point to someone supremely in the know and well funded, Luthor and/or Calculator.

  • Oct. 11, 2005, 11:18 a.m. CST

    Heathen's guess for Mockingbird

    by The Heathen

    Joker or Red Hood. I guess that's who I would LIKE for it to be. The last I saw of Joker he was about to get (supposedly) the shit beat out of him by Red Hodd, I mean Hood. If it's not primarily the Joker, maybe it's Jason Todd? He's been pretty bad ass and doesn't want to conform with the heroes or villians really. I'd like that angle. I hope it's not Luthor. What would be his benefit? For good measure I'll throw in Alexander Luthor, but I wouldn't be thrilled by that either.

  • Oct. 11, 2005, 11:22 a.m. CST

    and in case you were wondering

    by The Heathen

    I don't count that crap "War Crimes" or whatever it was called being the last appearance of Mr. J (wastofmymoneycrossover)

  • Oct. 11, 2005, 12:17 p.m. CST

    Mockingbird is... (SPOILERS)

    by Gus Nukem

    ...balckthought - the mysterious, new AICN comics talkbacker Darth Kal-El mentioned a few posts back. So far I haven't read any posts by him, but this kind of lurking and manipulation point out in one direction... him.

  • Oct. 11, 2005, 12:19 p.m. CST

    crikey

    by Gus Nukem

    read: point *towards* one direction

  • Egads.

  • Well, serves me right for talking about Football so much i guess. Don't read Lying in the gutters this week if you don't want some big stuff spoiled big time. The Infinite Crisis should've started at the same time HoM started so by now it'd all be pretty much done with and i wouldn't have to hear about it everywhere i go.

  • Oct. 11, 2005, 3:49 p.m. CST

    Is it just me?

    by mortsleam

    Or does Quitely's Luthor look a little too much like Cassandra X with botox and a sex change? And Supes looks just like my ex-uncle-in-law. Or Captain Marvel. Other than that, cool.

  • Oct. 11, 2005, 4:24 p.m. CST

    how dare you!

    by blackthought

    expose my secrets gus!

  • Oct. 11, 2005, 6 p.m. CST

    i thought everyone knew

    by Darth Kal-El

    that 'balckthought' is bizarro world blackthought!

  • Oct. 11, 2005, 6:02 p.m. CST

    or that im a shitty speller

    by Darth Kal-El

  • Oct. 11, 2005, 6:14 p.m. CST

    personally...

    by Darth Kal-El

    ...i like how in between comic columns we come in and post about soccer or everyone's weekend or random things till the new column comes up. i wonder if that was what was meant by "the usual asskissing, ego stroking, and self-important blather".

  • Oct. 11, 2005, 7:55 p.m. CST

    robert kirkman

    by Darth Kal-El

    robert kirkman has a column on cbr. i was looking through the archves and i found this column on internet fans thats actually pretty on point. http://tinyurl.com/9auqj.i sent him an email inviting him to our board.hopefully hell come by

  • Oct. 11, 2005, 8:44 p.m. CST

    balckthought & blackthought

    by Gus Nukem

    Guys, we can't keep this a secret any longer. Darth: you 've spoiled the reading experience for all of us. SHAME on you, sir. Don't try to cover it up with flimsy excuses such as typos and stuff. --- Blackthought: don't pretend you 're *it*. balckthought is in fact the villain behind the IC and an infrequent AICN comics talkbacker. However, he/she/it is not you. The name balckthought is an obvious spoonerism based on your AICN talkback user ID, but please don't pretend to be him.

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 1:13 a.m. CST

    that's what you'd like to think gus...

    by blackthought

    but i hold mysteries.

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 2:07 a.m. CST

    shame on me you say?

    by Darth Kal-El

    i have no shame!

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 2:07 a.m. CST

    while he holds mysteries

    by Darth Kal-El

    im going nether twixting

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 6:18 a.m. CST

    OT: Animal Man & The Coyote Gospel

    by Gus Nukem

    I read the 1st Animal Man tpb. The Coyote Gospel was exceptional. Poignant and very powerful.

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 8:09 a.m. CST

    Kirkman

    by Shigeru

    If Robert Kirkman ever posts here I'll eat my hat. I never understood that phrase. I don't even really wear hats. Know what else I never really understood? Why in the early issues of walking dead it was snowing in Atlanta. It doesn't snow there right??

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 1:46 p.m. CST

    Didn't you ask Kirkman that on his anwering machine Shigeru?

    by The Heathen

    I think it does, or are you just being coy and I look like a dope right now? Speaking of Kirkman, I'm reading Invincible issues 14-26 the past few nights after I read the HC. I really like this book a lot. And my other Kirkman favorite The Walking Dead is coming out with Walking Dead Omnibus Vol. 1 deluxe HC oversized slip-cased volume. "Perfect for long time fans, new readers, and anyone needing a heavy object with which to fend off The Walking Dead. Collects THE WALKING DEAD #1-24. This is a limited, one-time offer. This item will be limited to initial orders only and will not be reprinted." Or so say's the solicitations. Only $100, or $75 discounted. I don't know about you guy's but I'm going to try and get it. Try.

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 1:53 p.m. CST

    Batman Begins DVD

    by The Heathen

    www.batmanbegins.com *** check out the details for the 2 disc edition. Pretty sweet. Can't believe it's out already. I guess because it failed so hugely at the box office right?

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 2:26 p.m. CST

    Now that Batman Begins is out on DVD

    by El Vale

    Moviemack's head will explode.

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 2:39 p.m. CST

    Yeah, he'll probably say that it's going to tank by DVD

    by The Heathen

    blah, blah, blah (not Bob Loblaw). Great link to Kirkman's column at CBR Kal-El. I should go their more often. He should stop by here. It's not like we've ever argued about Liefeld or anything. : ) That Static Shock thing was pretty funny too.

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 2:41 p.m. CST

    now that i finished lost

    by Darth Kal-El

    i dont really have anything else on my plate til sopranos and the wire come out so im glad batman begins is coming out.sounds pretty packed with goodies too!

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 2:51 p.m. CST

    Yeah I did ask that on his answering machine...

    by Shigeru

    but I am pretty sure he set up a separate line with an answering machine, shut off the ringer, and gave the # to Bendis. No way that's his real #. Not that I can blame him. And I don't think it snows in Atlanta, but I could be wrong. I was just thinking of last winter when they got like an inch of frost and the city shut down for like a month. Come to fucking Boston and see how ya like it huh?!? Last winter we had 35" of snow in ONE WEEKEND. I also encourage fellow Cogs to check out Johanna Stoke's new column over at CBR. Pretty funny.

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 3:18 p.m. CST

    I hate Florida's weather

    by The Heathen

    I wish we actually had SEASONS here. It's hot and humid for 9 months and then it's kinda cold and damp for the rest

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 3:23 p.m. CST

    I hate Florida's weather

    by The Heathen

    I wish we actually had SEASONS here. It's hot and humid for 9 months and then it's kinda cold and damp for the rest

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 3:28 p.m. CST

    thought i'd post that twice

    by The Heathen

    I just read at CBR that DC is collecting every Alan Moore story into a Trade including "Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow" and "The Killing Joke." Hope this just posts once, if not, you Cogs know why.

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 3:39 p.m. CST

    defintely ready for lost

    by Darth Kal-El

    i saw 2.3 on sunday so im ready to get the new episode.i think im going to be a bit spolied from the dvd set and will want huge 4 hour lost marathons.oh well im on the weekly shcedule now. and was jin speaking english in the preview for this week? holy shit! i hate florida weather too.we stopped in miami on the way to ecuador once and had a 5 hour layover. talk about sweating like its going out of style!no nethers to twixt but my own heathen. i still havent gotten a new girl but thats ok i like being single too.sorry for the crudity thalya

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 4 p.m. CST

    i read that too

    by blackthought

    heathen, sweet sounding moore collection me thinks....and LOST...cannot wait...what will jin do?

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 4:03 p.m. CST

    One things for sure

    by The Heathen

    "everything's going to change."

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 4:46 p.m. CST

    Hey!

    by Thalya

    ...i'm single too..

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 6:23 p.m. CST

    I hated that Johana Stokes column

    by El Vale

    Suddenly i need some chick i haven't heard from to tell me that i'm an idiot that knows nothing about girls? i don't know who the fuck she thinks she is.

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 7:06 p.m. CST

    About that Moore collection

    by Gus Nukem

    It is not complete. His 1st Swamp Thing story (ST #020 - from v.2 I think) is not collected in the first 6 ST TPBs (the ones which collect the Moore run) and it is not featured in the aforementioned collection.

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 7:28 p.m. CST

    thalya what about noah?!!

    by Darth Kal-El

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 8:13 p.m. CST

    all cog smooches

    by blackthought

    are required by law to be single...wait, what are we talking about? oh...look, desmond brother.

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 8:44 p.m. CST

    i thought we were required to have imaginary girlfriends?!!

    by Darth Kal-El

    after all the money ive spent on keeping jewel and morena imaginarly happy!

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 8:48 p.m. CST

    Not related to comics but since the new column is not up yet-

    by Darth Kal-El

    http://tinyurl.com/czkeu****i dont know how many of u guys play video games but im sure we can all agree this guys is an idiot.

  • Oct. 12, 2005, 10:22 p.m. CST

    What a moron

    by El Vale

    People have waaay too much time on their hands. And this is coming from a Cog Smoocher!

  • Oct. 13, 2005, 12:48 a.m. CST

    er...um...

    by Thalya

    *tries to type very lightly as Noah's asleep in bed next to her* He doesn't know that..

  • Oct. 13, 2005, 2:05 a.m. CST

    *whispering*oh,mums the word then

    by Darth Kal-El

  • Oct. 13, 2005, 8 a.m. CST

    Of Course You Don't Need Some Chick You've Never Heard O

    by Buzz Maverik

    That's what you've got us for...sorry. I kid because the opportunity to kid was there and I have no impulse control.

  • Oct. 13, 2005, 8:30 a.m. CST

    Okay, I Just Checked Out The Column By The Chick Who Said That E

    by Buzz Maverik

    ...She's kinda right. Not about El's understanding of women...well, she's probably right about that but who the hell cares? If any of you were stupid enough to try to get a non-imaginary girlfriend interested in comics, I suppose this Ms. Stokes' way would be the way to go. Actually, my biggest problem with her is that she dissed the Y chromosome, so she'd probably hate me, having the Double-Y that is prevalent in repeat offenders and Alpha Dawg males (I remember how excited the geneticists were at Colarado 51: "We've got Double Y. Move this one over to Black Bag!"). I used to work with this chick who'd just broken up with a comic geek. She'd tell me all about him because she thought I was listening instead of thinking about comics like I really was. Horror stories: like Jo Stokes said, comics as gifts; comics in bed after sex and mandatory cuddling. Even I was appalled, as I sat in my cubicle sketching superheroes. The weird thing was that it turned out the dude went to the same comic shop I did and we struck up a friendship. If this had been one of those horrible romantic comedies, I guess they'd have been Ashley Judd and Dermot Mulroney and I'd have been...I dunno, the unthreatening best friend, but no, uh, uh, Buzz Maverik don't play that. If life is a movie, I'm one half Lee Marvin and one half Bill Murray (and not the Bill Murray who is just platonic pals with Scarlett Jo. I'm the Bill Murray who tells his partners: "I'm takin' our client back to her apartment and checking her out...checking out her apartment"). Anyway, I could see why my coworker dug this guy because he had lots of coin. He consistently spent more on comics than anyone I've ever seen in my life, but he didn't just live in a shithole filled with comics. He was a rich dude. So remember, when your non-imaginary girlfriend reads comics, she's not really reading 'em and she's bitching to her girlfriends and to some dude who is taking no pains to hide the fact that he doesn't care.

  • Oct. 13, 2005, 8:42 a.m. CST

    ouch on that article

    by blackthought

    and new column is finally up...and vale...ouch for us...oh look uruguay hasn't beaten argentina in 16 years on uruguayan soil and what happens they beat em...argh.

  • Oct. 13, 2005, 2:03 p.m. CST

    Yeah i know Blackthought...

    by El Vale

    But i really want to think it wasn't, you know...fixed or something. I mean the argentinos, by now, couldn't care less...just like the paraguayos, because i don't think we'd have won if they'd actually needed some points. Plus, we shouldn't be crossing our fingers for ONE MORE POINT. I mean we lost 12 points in Barranquilla...12 FUCKING POINTS! And now we're gonna blame the argentinos for not going to the world cup?

  • Oct. 13, 2005, 8:43 p.m. CST

    still sucks man

    by blackthought

    2 straight world cups missed...when did paraguay and ecaudor and uruguay replace us on the pecking order behind the argies and brasil? sighs...we have too much talent to be floudering like this.

  • Oct. 26, 2005, 8:08 p.m. CST

    blackthought still sucks, man

    by Gus Nukem

    LAST!

  • Oct. 27, 2005, 9:49 p.m. CST

    hmmmmmm....

    by blackthought

    i see we are now resorting to personal attacks and insults...tsk tsk...LAST!

  • Nov. 2, 2005, 4:05 p.m. CST

    I will *blow* you...

    by Gus Nukem

    away. LAST! Begone with you. I. AM. LAST.

  • Nov. 2, 2005, 6:58 p.m. CST

    uh-huh

    by blackthought

    keep wishing...LAST!