Comics

AICN COMICS REVIEWS BATMAN! THOR! OUTER SPACE MEN! & MUCH MORE!!!

Published at: Feb. 18, 2009, 9:12 a.m. CST

#40 2/11/09 #7

The Pull List (Click title to go directly to the review) THOR #600 Two views on BATMAN #686 THE OUTER SPACE MEN OGN RESISTANCE #1 GRIMM FAIRY TALES VOL 4 BATMAN & THE OUTSIDERS SPECIAL #1 Raiders of the Long Box focuses on Bloodwynd! Big Eyes For the Cape Guy presents GO WEST VOL 1 CHEAP SHOTS!

THOR #600

Writer(s): J. Michael Straczynski w/ Stan Lee and Chris Giarrusso Artist(s): Olivier Coipel, Marko Djurdjevic, David Aja & Giarrusso Publisher: Marvel Comics Reviewed by Humphrey Lee

Every day, every hour goes by and trends keep appearing and cycling on teh Internets and in our terminology derived from it. Things like, well, calling it "teh Internets" for one. But you've got LOLcats, Rick Rolling, people getting pwned and those that rulzored them, etc etc etc. The one that seems to be running around the most right now, at least from where I've been wandering these days (mostly a lot of video game sites, so you probably get what I mean) is the calling of pretty much anything and everything as "epic". Epic win, epic fail, movie and video game trailers being referred to as "epic", epic boss fight, epic cover art, epic deuce I just dropped...epic epic epic. It's misused at the least, over-used at the most, but really, it's just goddamn annoying and not really very cute any more. But here I am, with something like 100 pages of THOR comic in front of me and really, all that's coming to me is, "WHOA...that was pretty epic..."
I guess I'm Epic Fail on hypocrisy....
It took me a while to warm up to this new run at first, I'll admit that. The first three issues or so felt a little too "decompressed" (remember when that was the hot word running around the forums?) to me. A handful of issues just to have Thor come back and then fight Iron Man because it was the fun thing to do then apparently wasn't cutting it. It wasn't until the more middle issues, taking cue at the end of that issue with the hot hero on hero action, where Thor started to go around releasing the essence or what have you of his fellow Asgardians that I started to buy into this approach to the series and how it was juggling the humanity aspect, not just from Donald Blake's perspective, but that of Thor's and the Asgardians’ as they set themselves right outside a small Mid-Western town and occasionally mingled with the mortals and so on. And then there was Loki...
If there's anything to respect with this issue, it's watching the seeds of the now mammarily equipped God of Mischief become sown as he/she finally plays the hand...it has been cycling for seven or eight issues now as she (yeah, that's what she is now, I'll settle on that) has moved the players around for a while now, and done her own bit of dirty work gathering the ability to pull the resurrectiony shenanigans she did with this issue. All resulting in the mother of all slugfests, hands down one of the best I've ever witnessed in a comic book I would have to say, and we have ourselves one displaced God of Thunder because of it, as he unwittingly committed grand patricide under unknown circumstances. It's all very Sandman-like, with one immortal sibling setting up the next to do something highly forbidden without the proper knowledge - and that kind of execution I can respect.
What I love is that this isn't a case anymore of "Loki tries this, fails, comes back in ten issues to try again". This is going to be long term, and that's not a crack on the erratic appearance of this book on the shelves. This is going to play out for a while it seems, and "people" are going to get hurt, and I have a feeling that when Loki finally does fall, she's going to fall hard. JMS has really made that character truly devilishly despicable, and I think it takes a lot of skill to command that kind of feeling of loathing at a figment of ink and paper that anytime they're on the screen you wish someone would just smash their face in. The only thing I'm really wary about in the upcoming days for this book is its involvement. We've got the Dark Avengers here, and it looks like Doom and Latveria are going to become involved and I'm not sure if that's the right direction. One, like I alluded to just a bit ago, this isn't exactly a book known for it's timeliness, so I'm not so sure mixing it up with the current Marvel status quo is a smart idea, and secondly, I just don't think I really like the idea of Thor playing too much in the Marvel Universe in general. It's one thing to drop in and drop a badass line before rallying the troops to stomp some Skrulls, but it's another when he gets involved too regularly, mainly because he and his fellow gods just play on power levels the non-cosmic beings of the company line aren't capable of hanging with for the most part. But, I guess that's always been the case with Thor and is a debate for another time.
All in all, I have to give big ups on this package. I've admittedly been one of the biggest critics of Marvel's pricing policies and FUBARs the past couple years - re: AXM: GHOST BOXES - but I'm anything but dissatisfied with this final product, which I think could also qualify for the current usage of the 'e' word. There's just so much damn content here, and it's highly appreciated. From the fantastic main story that was aces from the top down and commanded a huge page count, to the pretty amusing Stan Lee joint that I was at the least excited for to see more David Aja art (for fuck's sakes get this guy on a regular gig soon!) and the Giarrusso mini-Marvels story was just as endearing as you'd come to expect. That content was already worth the fiver and then some, and there's some decent reprint material in back and a cool little collage of every single Thor cover to this point that was neat to glance over. At the end of the day, though, this was a stellar chapter in a run that I think could become a classic one as long as the creative team sticks it out long enough and keeps giving it and the material it's rooted in the respect it deserves and the modern touch that will make it stand out above the past. There weren't many of them to begin with, but far as I can tell this is going to the one and only book getting the "economic shitter" price bump that I'm going to be sticking with, and if there were any sort of barometer of how good this book has been, that would be it. I'm a man of my principles, but even I'm willing to brush those aside for a hell of a comic, which this undoubtedly is to me.
Here's to six hundred issues for a book that I sometimes can't believe has lasted as long as it has, and here's to a hell of a kick start to the next six hundred adventures of the Fabio locked hammer wielder. May there be much smashing in your future...
Humphrey Lee has been an avid comic book reader going on fifteen years now and a contributor to Ain't It Cool comics for quite a few as well. In fact, reading comics is about all he does in his free time and where all the money from his day job wages goes to - funding his comic book habit so he can talk about them to you, our loyal readers (lucky you). He's a bit of a social networking whore, so you can find him all over the Interwebs on sites like Twitter, The MySpaces, Facebookand a Blogger Account where he also mostly talks about comics with his free time because he hasn't the slightest semblance of a life. Sad but true, and he gladly encourages you to add, read, and comment as you will.

Editor’s Note: Sometimes when two @$$Holes want to review the same book, we build an arena with the cushions from the moldy couch that Schleppy sleeps on in the spare room of @$$Hole HQ and have the two reviewers battle it out in a death match. The winner of that death match gets to review the book. When that fight comes to a draw and both Holes are left bloody and broken, but still alive, we give up and run both reviews. This is one of those occasions.
Ok, that may not be true, but it’s a lot more interesting than admitting that two of us reviewed the same book this week. Enjoy the double shot review.

BATMAN #686

Writer: Neil Gaiman Pencils: Andy Kubert Inks: Scott Williams Publisher: DC Comics Reviewed by Stones Throw

In THE SANDMAN, Neil Gaiman wove an intricate tapestry of ancient myth, legend, and folk tales into a touching and tragical-type story featuring an enigmatic, melancholy and black-clad lead character, then wrapped it all up with a beautiful funeral story called THE WAKE (dreams? Wake? Funeral? Get it?), which was illustrated by Michael Zulli.
Now, if he did exactly the same thing, only replace “myth, legend and folk takes” with “Batman comics”, “The Wake” with “Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader?”, and “Michael Zulli” with “one of the Kubert brothers”, would that not be about the best thing ever, or at least the best comic of the last week?
Well, now that the annoying intro is out of the way, I can tell you that the answer is yes. Yes, this is about the best thing ever, or at least the best comic of the last week. See, I knew it would be good, but I wasn’t really counting on anything quite this good. Chances are that it wasn’t going to be closely tied into whatever did happen in R.I.P., and what with the title (a reference to Alan Moore’s classic “Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?”, by the way), Gaiman’s somewhat below-par recent comics work in 1602 and THE ETERNALS for Marvel, and the one other Gaiman Batman story I have read, a hilarious short in the pages of BATMAN: BLACK AND WHITE featuring Batman and the Joker “on call” in a studio’s actors’ room, I had this pegged as a somewhat campy take on classic Batman with added poignancy.
Well, it is that, but so much more besides, as well. What it really resembles is the great SANDMAN arc “World’s End”, with friends and enemies alike standing up to tell their story of the death of the Batman. “World’s End” was, of course, itself a take on Chaucer’s CANTERBURY TALES (which I believe featured Dane Whitman, aka Marvel’s Black Knight, and the Squire, who appeared in Grant Morrison’s run on BATMAN a few months back).
Anyway, Neil Gaiman follows Grant Morrison’s example by taking Batman’s entire history as up for grabs. Makes sense to me. With a character as old as Batman, ignoring the history or aping one particular era is almost certainly going to lead to dull comics. But I also think he’s more successful since he’s very obviously not trying to make it fit into one conventional timeline. The Catwoman who stands up to narrate “The Cat-Woman’s Tale”, is a different Selina Kyle to the one we saw enter in her Catillac (don’t worry, Gaiman also brings back the Joker’s and Two-Face’s cars). The implication seems to be that being a fictional, serialised character Batman’s lived many lives, and that he could never have just one death. Is that why Gaiman takes a leaf out of the death of Robin Hood for the conclusion of her story? You’d have to ask someone smarter than me. But I know that when I first got to the end of “The Cat-Woman’s Tale”, it seemed as wrong and sad as all hell. Then I looked up the original ballad of the death of Robin Hood, and it felt even sadder.
That’s Gaiman’s special skill, demonstrated over and over again in SANDMAN, and once more here” being able to remold traditional stories to make them affecting once again. What I would love is if he subverted our expectations again and had the story wriggle out from the frame structure into more of an adventure mystery (in the pages of DETECTIVE COMICS, too), as suggested by the appearance of the “real” Bruce Wayne on the last page.
But going by this comic, whatever Gaiman and Kubert give us is likely to be way better than anything I can expect. Whatever happens to the Caped Crusader, I’m there next month.

And now for an alternative review

BATMAN #686

Writer: Neil Gaiman Pencils: Andy Kubert Inks: Scott Williams Publisher: DC Comics Reviewer: Ambush Bug

Honestly, I think may need to take a break from DC Comics for a while. I love DC Comics. I grew up appreciating the diversity and complexity of the characters--the wonderful traditions and vivid costumes and rich history. Out of all of the comics universes out there, DC's is the vastest. Marvel has its merits, but there's just something mythic about DC that I can't help but find myself attracted to.
That said, the way things have been run at DC and the way their top tier books are being handled leave a horrible taste in my mouth these days, Batman especially. The mismanaged mess that was FINAL CRISIS/BATMAN RIP really made me step back and ask myself for the first time since I started collecting comics whether or not DC was for me anymore. It jaded me. It made me not care anymore. And I hate that I feel this way.
Take BATMAN #686, for example.
It's a perfectly good book. The art is superb and hopefully this will be the year that Andy Kubert will get a chance to shine because he's been producing great stuff for years and now he's working on this high profile book (his brother Adam is doing similarly awesome work in BATMAN & THE OUTSIDERS which I also review in this column). The detail and the paneling, the attention to structure and articulation of body posturings, all masterfully done.
And the story by Neil Gaiman itself is pretty kick ass as well. We've got a dead Batman in a coffin. A crowd of friends, family, and foes gather to pay their respects and tell a bunch of stories, and we have a nice twist where everyone there thinks that they were the ones responsible for the death of Batman. This should be a great story. Structurally and imaginatively speaking, it is.
I should be able to read this book and weigh it on its own merits. I should not be thinking about Morrison's fever dream-like narrative that made my head spin. I should not let my dislike for FINAL CRISIS and the bungled editorial and the lack of effect on DCU proper and the utter lack of continuity or consistency in all of DC's books effect the way I feel about this issue. But the last few years have been such a downward spiral for DC, I can't help but feel disdain for all things DC while reading this book.
I can't help but notice that this is yet another "dead Batman" story in a year where we have had too many to keep track. I can't help but feel disappointed that this is yet another alternate universe/Elsewords story cast with a set of characters that used to be so distinct and textured enough to be understood no matter what the alternative permutation explored, but now are mere shadows of that due to the multiple earths concept. I can't help but feel as if this is yet another story with the sole purpose of being THE Batman Story rather than a story that understands, draws from, and expands the history of the character.
More than any other company, DC needs to pull back, regroup, and redefine what their company and comic book universe is all about. Event overload has not just affected the readers, but the characters the stories are about. No one knows what the DCU is about anymore, and it's a sad thing because I'm a reader who loves the characters and desperately wants to continue reading about them. Solid stories with the goal to establish the DCU and the characters heroing and villaining around in it is what's necessary here, not another hyped up “what if” story.
BATMAN #686 would have received my whole-hearted recommendation in any other year. But because it dropped at the time it did, I can't help but find it to be another vanity project that takes more away from what the DCU once was than adding to it.
Ambush Bug is Mark L. Miller, reviewer and co-editor of AICN Comics for over seven years. Check out previews to his short comic book fiction here and here published in MUSCLES & FIGHTS 3 and MUSCLES & FRIGHTS on his ComicSpace page. Bug was interviewed here and here at Cream City Comics. Look for more comics from Bug in 2009 from Bluewater Productions, including the just-announced sequel to THE TINGLER for their VINCENT PRICE PRESENTS ongoing series.

THE OUTER SPACE MEN OGN

Writer: Eric C. Hayes Artist: Rudolf Montemayor Publisher: The Outer Space Men LLC Reviewer: Optimous Douche

I don’t fuck around with my science fiction. My brain is an endless repository for Star Trek the Next Generation, Isaac Asimov and Carl Sagan; I want my science fiction to prescribe to some semblance of “fact,” or at least the highest caliber of plausible bullshit. So when I pulled apart the tri-fold cover of the hefty OUTER SPACE MEN tome, my Sci-Fi nerdar went on full alert. Spread before me was the introduction to a 1960’s line of toys that not only scoffed at my erudite Sci-Fi sensibilities, but also kicked Darwinism square in the nuts. Aquatic behemoth men from Jupiter, winged humanoids from Venus and an elephant octopus from Neptune, what the hell was going on? Did I just uncover the lost prophecies of Ed Wood? I immediately flipped the book over to read the brief abstract on the back. Being part of the ADD generation, naturally I skimmed: 1960s heroes…reimagined for 21st century…there’s a dude named Electron +, giggle…eco-terrorists and rainforests. OK Ed Wood meets Captain Planet. Can I do this, can I devote myself to over 100 pages of nostalgia for a set of toys I never played with?
The answer is not only did I read these 100+ pages, I devoured them. Mainly because when all was said and done, this story had very little to do with toys or a preachy message about conserving our planet. Instead, writer Hayes used these devices to tell a complex and unique tale that served up “scientific” answers to man’s greatest questions of religion, creation, God and most importantly the Devil. Hayes and Montemayor have not only resuscitated THE OUTER SPACE MEN, but crafted a story that left me admiring its concepts long after I closed the last page.
While I personally have no forgotten love for the Outer Space men toy line, Hayes certainly must. That’s the only way I can see him taking these lifeless poseable action figures with very little back-story and flesh out an entire team of classic archetypes: Commander Comet, the angelic humanoid from Venus serves as the team’s…commander obviously, Colossus Rex from Jupiter is the hulking amphibian muscle of the team, Electron + the robot from Pluto and Orbitron from Uranus are the brains of the team, Xodiac from Saturn serves as the soulful team member and Alpha 7 the classic green antenna Martian serves as the comic relief. I’m sure Hayes used some of the team’s obvious physical attributes to designate their place on the team, but what truly astounded me was the level of back-story that accompanied each placement particularly in the case of Electron +. Electron +’s estrangement from the rest of team was palpable in every page. Alone on what some debate is even a planet these days, Electron +’s place on Pluto is our purview to the rest of the galaxy. In every page I could feel his longing to belong and yet still always be an outsider. I haven’t felt this much for a robot since I watched Haley Joel Osmont say “mommy” in “A.I.”
It’s difficult to express the originality of this book without giving away the plot surprises that made it worth reading. Let’s just say that we are not the only earthlings to ever occupy this planet and our beliefs in heaven and hell are more than the scribbling of prophets, but instead are the figurative interpretations to actual events that happened in Earth’s pre-history. Hell is a place and you don’t have to die to get there.
I would be remiss if I didn’t give special note to Montemayor’s accomplished art work throughout the book. Whether traversing space, planted firmly on terra firma or exploring the solar system that once was, Montemayor set the tonality of each scene with effortless clarity and originality. Even the Outer Space Men themselves leverage our modern macabre sensibilities towards art work without deviating too far from their innocent origins. The only place where I was somewhat pulled out of the book is when they sue a blog page authored by a modern day prophet too move the story. By doing away with any kind of border or landing page, I needed the dialogue to tell me I was reading a blog as opposed to an e-mail. This is a nit though in what was otherwise a superb piece of work.
I’m going to close this review out by throwing on my corporate marketing hat, simply because I think this book is being short changed with how it’s currently positioning it self. I understand that this title is paying homage to the toy line and many old time fans will traverse this title based solely on that fact alone. However, a book that melds sci-fi, ancient religion and mythology in one beautiful package is absolutely the stuff comic fans thirst for, even if we couldn’t tell you the difference between an Outer Space Man and Mork from Ork. For round two of the marketing campaign to push this book, I can only hope that Hayes’ refreshing story will start trumping the nostalgia card.
When Optimous Douche isn’t reading comics and misspelling the names of 80’s icons, he “transforms” into a corporate communications guru. "What if the whole world had superpowers? Find out in the pages of Optimous’ original book AVERAGE JOE. Read the first full issue on Optimous’ New Blog and see original sketches by fellow @$$hole Bottleimp. If you are a publisher or can help these guys get AVERAGE JOE up, up, and on the shelves in any way, drop Optimous a line."

RESISTANCE #1

Writer: Mike Costa Artist: Ramon Perez Inker: Ramon Perez Publisher: DC WildStorm Guest @$$hole Reviewer: William

To paraphrase the great "I'm still around and I'm going to outlive you all" Roger Ebert, I hated hated hated this comic book. I rarely dislike a comic book so much that I felt it was an utter waste of my time, energy and money to have ever come across it, but much like Batman recently did with his once in a lifetime exception with Darkseid, so will I with this comic.
So, where to begin? I usually pick up around two extra comics each week at my local comic book shop, ones that would be outside of my usual subscription list. I do this because I like to experience new comics that I otherwise wouldn't have, and if they seem interesting enough I'll simply add them onto my list.
I saw this comic just last week and it seemed good enough to grab. The cover showcasing some photo of WWII soldiers posing over a dead Chimera was definitely the deciding factor. (It reminded me of the great NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD remake that came out a while back, the one with the amazingly sexy redhead Patricia Tallman. In the end credits you see photos of people proudly standing next to dead zombies and such). And to be honest I've never actually played any of the Resistance games, but I am aware of their concepts so that the idea of reading something expanding upon the video games seemed interesting enough.
Boy, was I wrong. I think this was definitely a case of the old bait-and-switch, as what was promised on the cover definitely didn't happen within the comic. First off the comic started good enough with a standard dogfight between some WWII fighter planes and some Chimeran ships, but it all goes downhill from there. I paid $3.99 (ugh, I know) to get some Chimeran action, to see what kind of neat insight might be given about them, to see some one-on-one fights between them and some soldiers (such as the cover alluded to), but instead most of the rest of the comic is devoted to...wait for it....some high ranking officials fighting amongst themselves because they caught some of their subordinates in a panty raid with some of the office girls. I'm serious about what I just wrote: most of the comic is dedicated to a panty raid and the aftereffects of it among some of the senior officers. I thought it was a joke at first, but when the comic ended on page 17 (more on that in a little bit) with a hint about some atomic bomb stuff it was already over. I thought to myself "What? This is what I paid $4 bucks for?" I reread the comic book to see if I missed anything in between, but things were as they seemed the first time.
That's just the first part. The second thing that I hated is the aforementioned 17 page storyline. I'm serious, only 17 actual pages are dedicated to the original story because the rest of the comic was some inane short story about some son and his dad being separated during the war, where once again the Chimera are mentioned but are completely M.I.A. Oh my goodness I seriously felt I was duped at this point. How can you have an entire comic book about the Resistance and the Chimera, only to not have any actual Chimera within it (other than the brief intro dogfight between some Chimeran ships)? I mean come on, WildStorm--you have to do better than this.
I don't know whether to blame WildStorm or the writer Mike Costa for the lack of anything in the comic book. It was as if the comic itself was on some imaginary movie budget restraint, where the action within the comic equaled higher costs for WildStorm and thus they had to be careful about anything extravagant. Maybe a lot more interesting stuff is going to be revealed as the comic book draws itself out, but at $4 bucks a pop you can count me out. It'll probably be by the 10th issue and the $40th dollar (plus tax) that an actual Chimera reveals itself if they continue at this pace. Artist Ramon Perez fares no better at this, either. His pencils/inks were very very simple, and the characters were sometimes hard to even tell apart. Two of the senior officers especially looked like the same person.
Anyways that's my rant, and it'll be interesting to see if anyone else felt the same way too. I don't really mean to be so mean-spirited about the thing, it's just that when I'm spending $4 for one comic book I expect higher standards nowadays.

GRIMM FAIRY TALES VOLUME 4

Written by: Raven Gregory, Ralph Tedesco, and Joe Tyler Art by: Way Too Many To Name Published by: Zenescope Entertainment Reviewed by: Ryan McLelland

Zenescope's fourth volume of GRIMM FAIRY TALES has hit and you'll never have more fun watching your childhood being ripped apart. All those dark and twisted fairy tales that you might not remember being that gruesome are made even more sinister within Grimm's pages.
For those unfamiliar with the series, GRIMM FAIRY TALES takes those stories of old and brings them to the present where the story usually interweaves with some poor sap’s life. Just as a lot of these tales had harsh morals coupled with death and gore, these modern takes go one step further. They do so amazingly well as it is a series that is definitely skewed for adult readers. Well, you can always read it to kids at nighttime if you wanted to – it would be fun to see them wake up screaming in terror.
The fourth volume is packed full of stories including “The Boy Who Cried Wolf”, “The Snow Queen”, “The Sorcerer's Apprentice”, “Rapunzel”, and the two part story of “Snow White and Rose Red”. The Snow White/ Rose Red story is the cream of the crop here, a fun retelling of the two sisters as ripped to shreds by Grimm's most constant writer Raven Gregory. The second part is drawn by Kris Carter whose artwork leaps off every page - never has a bear fight with hottie babes looks so great.
But it's what GRIMM FAIRY TALES is so great at: hot babes, violence, and stories that have held up for centuries. While all Zenescope's series are top-notch, GRIMM continues to be the shining star of the line and has yet to disappoint me in any capacity. And should you ever come upon a tower that holds a gorgeous babe with long hair you'll think twice about climbing up to see her after reading this incredible collection.
Ryan McLelland has worked in movies and comics journalism for the past several years before joining the @$$holes here at AICN. Ryan’s comic work has already graced comic shelves with Arcana’s PHILLY, WISE INTELLIGENCE, UPTOWN GIRL, and THE SENTINELS ANTHOLOGY. He rarely updates his blog but when he does it can be read at www.eyewannabe.com

BATMAN & THE OUTSIDERS SPECIAL #1

Writer: Pete Tomasi Art: Adam Kubert Publisher: DC Comics Reviewer: Ambush Bug

I've said it before and I'll yodel it now: I'm a sucker for team books. Even if the book isn't very good, like TITANS or TEEN TITANS or SECRET WARRIORS, I'll still find something fun in watching all of these dynamic personalities bashing into each other. Since Giffen's JLI, it's been quite common to see a mish-mash of heroes coming together and attempting to get along for the greater good. Usually, though, they end up bickering with one another so much the villainy takes a backseat to the heated back-and-forthings of these powerful individuals.
But THE OUTSIDERS are different. Many of the characters Pete Tomasi has chosen to fill out this new team have worked together in the past. Sure there have been different incarnations of the Outsiders through the years, but the original roster is the one that always comes to mind when the name is mentioned. Tomasi brings back Black Lightning, Metamorpho, Halo, Katana, and Geo-Force (along with a few new additions to the team) and the result is the sort of nostalgia that just might make this team of Just-A -Smidge-Lower-Than-A-Listers something fun to read.
But this is one of those group recruitment issues where a purpose is mapped out and players are chosen to take part in the process. Each character gets a page or two to establish where their lives are at the moment. Although not much time more than Alfred asking each one if he could have a moment is spent explaining why these teammates would choose to team up, I'm willing to set that minor beef aside because Tomasi had to bring them all together somehow. Tomasi never really lets us see Alfred's bartering and I don't know if it's necessary. Maybe simply being asked by Batman's butler is convincing enough to team up.
But this was a fun issue, mainly because there seems to be a lot of potentially cool stuff going on between these characters, especially with the inclusion of new members the Creeper and the new Owl Man. The Creeper alone is enough to make me buy this book. I've been waiting to see a bit more of the bouncing Etrigan/Joker meld in a team book for a while. His menacing grin seems the perfect choice to spice things up with this established team. The inclusion of Owl Man is interesting as well. Kind of a Batman wannabe, sure, but a character with enough history on his own to make it not be too annoying.
Adam Kubert is simply amazing. Much like his brother and father, his dynamic sense of panel and placement shines in this issue. Kubert has to do a lot of different scenes and characters in this book and all look phenomenal.
OUTSIDERS has been a book that gets a bad rap from time to time. Winick made it preachy. Dixon stormed off. Tieri tried to pick up the pieces. But it looks like Tomasi's sense of respect for the past and new school dynamic storytelling may bring back the spice this book once had. The characters are in place. The art and writing are damn fine. I'm hopeful that this rendition of the Outsiders lasts for a while.

Every comic shop has them… battered long boxes jam-packed with dog-eared titles ranging from forgotten heroes of the 1970s to multiple copies of chromium-covered “collector’s item” comics from the Big Bust of the 1990s. But if you are patient, and dig deep enough, you just may find something special…

A look back at the enigmatic Bloodwynd. By BottleImp

This week, RAIDERS OF THE LONG BOX asks the question: “What happens when a character is created purely as a plot device, and no one knows what to do with it after the plot is resolved?” The character in question: DC’s Bloodwynd.
Created by Dan Jurgens, Bloodwynd first appeared in JUSTICE LEAGUE AMERICA #61 as a mysterious ally with a taste for flashy jewelry in the new post-Giffen League’s fight against the villain The Weapons Master. Bloodwynd was immediately offered and accepted membership to the JLA by mastermind Maxwell Lord, though many of the League’s members were apprehensive about this hero whom nobody knew. Blue Beetle in particular mistrusted Bloodwynd, and future issues carried the subplot of Beetle trying to learn more about the League’s newest member.
A few months pass, the JLA is called upon to stop the threat of Doomsday, and during the battle Bloodwynd in engulfed in a raging inferno. Blue Beetle sees something that the reader cannot see, but is suddenly beaten to a pulp by Doomsday and rendered comatose. Superman is (seemingly) killed, Booster Gold’s suit is destroyed, and the League membership is changed once again. The only members to remain active: Guy Gardner and Bloodwynd.
Flash forward to almost a year later when the League is trapped in an alternate reality ruled by a Fascist JLA created by Doctor Destiny. During the confrontation with the league of that world, Bloodwynd changes his form to reveal that he is, in fact, the Martian Manhunter. The JLA escapes the alternate world with the aid of a revived Blue Beetle, leaving one question: why did Martian Manhunter take this alternate identity?
The following two issues reveal that the REAL Bloodwynd became trapped inside the Blood Gem (the source of his still-unspecified powers) while a creature called Rott used the Gem’s power to take control of the Martian Manhunter and force him to assume Bloodwynd’s identity and join the JLA, so that (in a totally convoluted way) Rott could use the Ray’s power (who wasn’t even a member of the JLA at the time Bloodwynd joined, but whatever) to escape imprisonment in the Blood Gem and…well, I’m not sure what he was going to do, because Rott got sucked back into the Gem pretty quickly.
Within these two issues (#s 76 and 77) Jurgens also gave the reader the real Bloodwynd’s origin. Turns out his ancestor Clemma was a slave on a plantation owned by a bastard named Jacob Whitney. In order to gain their freedom, Clemma and the other slaves used an ancient magic ritual to create the Blood Gem, which she used to rip Whitney’s soul out from his body and trap it within the Gem. As the Gem was passed on from generation to generation, the evil soul of Jacob Whitney grew stronger by drawing the dark sides of the Gem’s protectors’ personalities into itself. This collective evil eventually manifested itself as Rott. Therefore, the bearer of the Blood Gem was locked in a constant struggle for dominance with the evil within. Not a bad origin, right? There’s some pretty good stuff to work with…or so you might think.
But after Jurgens left JLA, nobody seemed to know what the hell to do with Bloodwynd. His powers (which the reader could never really be sure of, since the character was actually using Martian Manhunter’s powers for the majority of his appearances) were left largely undefined, and he was reduced to the worst kind of comic book character: a generic one. New JLA writer Dan Vado tried to add intrigue to Bloodwynd by implying that he was once in league with the villain Dreamslayer, but who gives a shit about Dreamslayer? This all happened at a low point for the JLA title—a time marked by forgettable plotlines and terrible, Liefeld-esque artwork (right down to artist Marc Campos drawing pages sideways instead of putting the effort into making them interesting compositions without forcing the reader to flip the book around). Bloodwynd slowly faded into obscurity, popping up here and there when the need arose for a generic magical character. After DC rebooted Dr. Fate as a knife-wielding demon-slayer (the less said about that the better), Bloodwynd became a sort of Surrogate Dr. Fate, whenever the story needed a magical hero to be mysterious and cape-ey, even within the new FATE series. Hell, Bloodwynd even had that whole funky border-around-the-word-balloon thing that Fate had. But his appearances dwindled more and more, until Bloodwynd was given the ultimate insult.
Remember the INFINITE CRISIS tie-in series, DAY OF JUDGEMENT? Pretty much every magical character that ever graced a DC comic made a cameo appearance, including a talking ape wearing a Sherlock Holmes hat. Guess who wasn’t invited to that party?
And why not? Sure, Bloodwynd’s costume was a little fruity, what with the gem-studded garter belt (an aside: the whole guys-wearing-garters thing that happened in the 1990s…what the fuck was that about?) and the Dracula cape, but let’s face it, no more ridiculous than many superhero outfits. The name is horrible—“Bloodwynd” sounds like a digestive condition you’d get from a steady diet of Taco Bell—but again, dumb comic book character names are nothing new. Was it a race thing? You know, I think it may have been, though not in the obvious way.
If a writer wanted to deepen the characterizations and personality of this blank slate of a superhero, they’d probably have to go back to the heart of his origin: the abominable practice of slavery. Now since most comic book writers are white, I’m thinking that trying to write about the “Black Experience” would be uncomfortable at best, and probably impossible for many (one exception is Gerard Jones, who plunged headfirst into writing about race within the short-lived GREEN LANTERN: MOSAIC series, but that’s a LONG BOX review for another day). Even with the best intentions, there’s always the possibility of a writer accidentally straying into racial stereotypes, or doing the opposite and dealing with the racial issue in such a safe and non-threatening way that it becomes a non-issue. I guess it just seemed safer to ignore this key aspect of the character (not to mention Rott, who as far as I could tell was never mentioned again) and write Bloodwynd as a guy with white tights and a cape and indeterminate magical powers, and go no deeper than that. And as every good comic book writer (and reader) knows, safe equals boring.
Since Bloodwynd showed up in the middle of the 1990s crappy-comic explosion, it’s a cinch to find his appearances in the cheap boxes at your local comic shop. I picked up a bunch of issues for prices ranging from a quarter to a buck apiece—here’s a rundown of some of the more interesting picks:
JUSTICE LEAGUE AMERICA #61-62: First appearance and Blue Beetle’s suspicions begin. JLA #69: Battle with Doomsday; Beetle sees Bloodwynd’s secret. JLA #72-75: “Destiny’s Hand” storyline that reveals Martian Manhunter as Bloodwynd (#74). JLA #76-77: “Blood Secrets,” Bloodwynd’s origin revealed. JLA #88: Ugh. Damn your inconceivable influence on comic art, Rob Liefeld! Read it at your own risk. SHOWCASE ’94 #5: “Hero of Choice,” some nice artwork by Max Douglas, but ultimately Ruben Diaz’s story turns Bloodwynd into a mishmash of Dr. Fate and the Spectre, with a dash of Marvel’s Ghost Rider thrown in for good measure, and adds no depth to the character. FATE #5: Bloodwynd is part of a magical Board of Directors reviewing the current Fate (Jared Stevens) and his ability to possess the power of Nabu. Scratch your head as Bloodwynd (still a new character in the DC Universe) is treated as an old acquaintance by the likes of the original Green Lantern, Doctor Occult and Felix Faust.
And Dan Jurgens, if by some miraculous chance you happen to read this review or have it mentioned to you, I’ve been kicking around an idea for a while that I think would bring Bloodwynd back to the DC Universe in a way that would both honor the origin you wrote and keep the character viable for future stories. Let’s do lunch sometime.
When released from his Bottle, the Imp takes the form of Stephen Andrade, an artist/illustrator/pirate monkey painter from the Northeast. You can see some of his artwork athere. He’s given up comics more times than he can remember. But every time he thinks he's out, they pull him back in.

GO WEST! VOL 1

By Yu Yagami Released by DC CMX Reviewer: Scott Green

Yu Yagami's GO WEST! is an energetic, enjoyable comedy western, not to be confused with RURONI KENSHIN creator Nobuhiro Watsuki's brief shonen adventure, GUN BLAZE WEST. Lacking a solid hook in its heroine, her predicament or her high concept, GO WEST! is not likely to become the next manga series to follow enthusiastically. However, even if it isn't anything powerfully compelling it's still distinctly fun to read the manga's Buster Keaton-esque romp through the cacti and saloons.
GO WEST's Yu Yagami has a clever approach to developing comedy homages to genres. I wouldn't call these works parodies because rather than satirizing his subject, the intent is more along the lines of erecting absurd, humorous situations out of recognizable building blocks affectionately borrowed from other genres. This pattern is demonstrated throughout the Yagami titles released in North America. THOSE WHO HUNT ELVES featured a trio of accidental modern adventurers, a martial artist, a schoolgirl military geek and an actress, running rough shot over a fantasy world. Rather than play the role of hapless strangers in a strange land, they literally attack their ridiculous problem, charging out into the world, stripping the clothes off elves in search of the magical tattoos that will send them home. Yagami's DOKKOIDER mixed character types from various works of sci-fi, particularly tokusatsu serials (ULTRAMAN, POWER RANGERS) with corporate politicking and a sitcom's apartment complex of troublesome neighbors. HIKKATSU! STRIKE A BLOW TO VIVIFY grafted post apocalyptic wear and tear onto a martial artist's quest, but rather than featuring an action hero like FIST OF THE NORTH STAR's Kenshiro wandering the deserts, the manga followed a young man looking to help people by perfecting his "Repair Blow," a strike based on the principle that hitting a broken TV will cause the malfunctioning machine to correct itself.
As might be deduced from it's title, GO WEST! is Yagami's western. While the summary on the back of CMX's release of the book makes GO WEST! sound marvelously incomprehensible, in fact, the high concept is rather simple. A young Asian woman gets off the boat, and entering America she declares that she is Naomi, no last name, 18 years old, in the country to locate her parents, who were missing since she was born. She immediately begins moving west, and meeting people who formulate assumptions about her, some of which are sane, some of which are far more questionable.
The journey starts with being measured for a casket, which might have been one of the saner ideas because it's prelude to Naomi traipsing into the course of a showdown in which a gunman in a black overcoat shrugs of a barrage to the chest before dropping his three opponents. Naomi thuds to the ground to find a scorpion staring into her eyes. She jumps up, and almost lands on a rattle snake before capping off her slapstick routine with a near trampling by a cattle stampede. After being informed that this jarring experience is par for her western course, Naomi hooks up with the first of her bizarre traveling companions. Far from a creature of "inherent deep kindness, docility and warmth," the horse that she meets is a rampaging beast insistent on running west in a straight line.
The core of the volume expands the manga's western cinema references, but also drives home its attitude of playful political incorrectness. "White, Black and Yellow" is about as classy as it sounds. Naomi is described as "yellow" by several characters, as well as by the design notes appendix. "White" is "Gunman," a bounty hunter modeled after THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE UGLY’s Clint Eastwood, down to the pattern on his serape, but markedly older. "Black" is Mingo Bomber, an afro sporting, dynamite chucking, kung fu kicking wanted man. Throughout my reading of the book I thought Mingo was wearing a black suit, a la PULP FICTION's Jules or a Motown singer. It turns out that the dark coloring and how the character was framed obscured the reference. A gray toned design in the appendix revealed that it's the Lee Van Cleef look from a FEW DOLLARS MORE. So, the story develops into a three way standoff of White, Black and Yellow gunning down each other with devastating revelations and challenges to those revelations.
In his comic strip afterword, Yagami jokes about doing research by visiting western themed amusement parks, Western Village, the western area at Tokyo Disneyland, the frontier village at Universal Studio Japan... Almost like a video game, this is the west as stage-like town square set pieces, surrounded by empty badlands to be travelled through. This plastic cactus of a world neither deserves nor asks to be taken seriously, and that frivolity proves to be an asset to the manga. Rather than simply turn a blind eye to plausibility and verisimilitude, the manga embraces its faux west as the ideal stage for its style of reference adorned visual comedy.
Much of GO WEST's success should be credited to Yagami's commands of the tools afforded by the medium. It's a manga that leans heavily on visual humor, and between the pantomime gesticulations, the cartooned expressions and occasional, well placed metaphorical imagery, Yagami wrings the most out of the available panels. With a thin lined, thin figured style, characters don't look bolted onto the page. With this light presence, it's as if the characters don't need to wait for the next panel to start moving. It's as if they're always ready to spring up or broadcast their next reaction across their face. This is the perfect visual attitude for the quirky, often physical, often slapstick interactions.
CMX's translation is remarkably adept at carrying the tone of the manga into the localization. The work's charm is enhanced when there's a distinctive voice to the manga, and beyond that its characters. Dialog like "I'll tell you a joke...there was this slim-hipped little filly who didn't know her right from her left and said she was headin' out west on her lonesome" is not necessarily natural, but this isn't a naturalistic manga. In moments like that "joke," the English wonderfully captures the playfulness of GO WEST!
A few of the gags in GO WEST! turn quick enough to prompt a laugh, but the manga does not generally have the sharpness to elicit laugh out loud mirth. It's more fun than funny. While I wouldn't rank GO WEST! high in a list of hilarious manga comedies, scenes like Naomi on her maniacal horse, plowing through the western landscape, straight through a cactus field, past a tranquil watering hole, careening through the path of a bear are as amusingly exhilarating as any Dragon Ball fight scene or Initial D race.
Scott Green has been writing for AICN ANIME for over seven years. If you like what you see here and love anime & manga, be sure to check out his latest AICN ANIME column here.

BATMAN CONFIDENTIAL #26 DC Comics

After reading this introduction of King Tut to the ranks of Batman's Rogues Gallery in this issue, I can't help but feel that sometimes modernizations of characters aren't that great. The issue was perfectly fine. Don't get me wrong. It's nice to read a Batman story that one can follow relatively easily rather than the drug-addled fever dream narratives we've seen coming from Morrison's run on the book. The thing is, with all of the riddle spewing, Olympic athlete-looking masked villains evilling up Gotham City, what's wrong with having a tubby professor who gets hit on the head and wakes up thinking he's the Egyptian King? Victor Buono did such an amazing job of hamming it up in the old BATMAN TV series, it just makes the guy with the gold mask in this issue nothing more than meh-inducing. A fun issue to read, but I found Tut's re-imagining to be pretty uninspired. - Bug

CAPTAIN BRITAIN & THE MI13 #10 Marvel Comics

The entire time I was reading this issue, I couldn't help but have the "Whalers on the Moon" song from Futurama playing in my head. But, y'know, with Vampires instead of Whalers. But you read that right, VAMPIRES ON THE FUCKING MOON! While the team reorients itself, which seems to be becoming a thing after each arc, the one and only Lord Dracula is taking advantage of their wariness to, I repeat again, LAUNCH AN ATTACK FROM THE FUCKING MOON! I don't know what it is about that premise that makes me giddy, but I'm like a school girl over here. And on top of that, there's just some good character movement here. The budding relationship between Blade and Spitfire, Black Knight's reclaiming of the true Ebony Blade and where his relationship with Faiza seems to be going, and Pete Wisdom and Captain Britain trying to swallow the ordeal they just went through last arc. And, y'know, Moon Vampires. This is all good stuff, and Cornell and Kirk are finding a good balance between these instances and then the action and back again to keep things interesting for the most part - the last arc was a little meh to me overall, but this one obviously has a concept I can get behind and that I hope pans out as well as the SECRET INVASION opener for the series. It's definitely not near the best book I buy, and I might not always be actively looking forward to it, but every time I get CB&TMI13 here in my hands I get the feeling I'm in for a fun ten minutes. And really, I guess you just can't really ask for more from your mainstream comics can you? Besides Vampires on the Moon. Make this a fifth week event Marvel. You can dedicate a whole month to fucking Apes, you can do this little thing for me I'd say. Cheers... - Humphrey

THE WALKING DEAD #58 Image Comics

Another issue of TWD down, another phenomenal issue read. I literally read this comic the second I get home from the comics store every month. No other book has that power over me, but this one does. More heavy stuff is revealed concerning Abraham, Rick, and Carl’s trip back to Rick’s home. We catch up with Morgan and Duane, the first survivors Rick met in the early issues of this series. And the zombie action is not only horrific, it’s meaningful and adds to the story. The events in this issue are sure to come back and bite all of the survivors in the @$$ (probably literally) for sure and I’ll be there reading it as soon as I get home from the store every time. Kirkman shows once again that he’s giving his all to this book. The revelations Rick, Abraham, and Carl share with one another are heartbreaking, mature, and resonant. This is as close to comic book perfection as you’re going to find today. - Bug

FABLES #81 DC Vertigo

Ashamed to say, but this book dipped a little the past half year or so, at least from the aspect of my enthusiasm for it from month to month. Of course there's all the reason in the world for me to expect this to happen; we just had the massive and tragic finale to the War for the Homelands and you have to do the whole "calm after the storm" fallout, and it's not like this hasn't been consistently one of the, and to me pretty much THE best comic out there for half a decade or so. You'll have those slow times, it just happens. But then you'll have those times like last issue where you're slapped in the face and told it's time to play again, and then you'll have issues like this one where your heart is torn right out and it cements itself in almost no time as king of the mountain again. Within little more than six issues we've seen one war end, another war begin, and my two favorite characters go down in the line of duty showing that even imaginary beings aren't exempt from sacrifice for the greater good. I guess congratulations are in order for Willingham and crew, I'll never doubt you again. And as for James Jean leaving the cover chores on this behind, it's almost as tragic as the contents of this issue, but given the man's talents, I'm sure he'll have no problems with the "Happily Ever After" in his career. A heartbreaker of an issue, gentlemen. Tragic to a 'T'. - Humphrey

G.I. JOE #2 IDW Publishing

I criticized this series’ first issue for starting out too slow. For a G.I. JOE comic, I wanted some kind of “POW!” to happen to blow me out of the water and get me psyched for this new series. After reading this issue, I’m starting to get what writer Chuck Dixon is doing here. He’s going for the slow boil here: the creeping, impending doom as the downtime the Joes are going through right now is coming to an end as COBRA begins to come together and become a serious threat to the world. It’s definitely a new approach, and one I’m willing to give a chance. This issue was definitely a whole lot better than the first. The car chase in Milan with Stalker was nice. The death of a minor Joe was pretty shocking. The revelation at the end wasn’t necessarily a surprise, but fun nevertheless. All in all, this book has the makings of a well-crafted and tension-filled story of modern war, which has a lot less to do with giant battles of armies clashing with one another and a lot more to do with the build-up to that conflict. Fun stuff with a lot of potential. Plus this issue gets bonus points for the David Allen Coe lyrics. - Bug

Editing, compiling, imaging, coding, logos & cat-wrangling by Ambush Bug Proofs, co-edits & common sense provided by Sleazy G


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Monday, Feb 23, 2009!

Readers Talkback

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  • Feb. 18, 2009, 9:20 a.m. CST

    Alfred

    by MattDomville

    Looks like he's considering becoming Batman in that cover... That would be an interesting direction for Gaiman to take it.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 9:23 a.m. CST

    Thor

    by Animation

    Am I supposed to buy Thor #600 because its #600 or because of the bimbo on the cover?

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 9:23 a.m. CST

    Yay! Comics!

    by The Penultimate Gunslinger

    I've been waiting for this all morning. Anything to distract me from the essay I should be doing.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 9:23 a.m. CST

    Really weird how the Gaiman Batman

    by Laserhead

    so closely resembled the two 'Last Rites' issues of the Morrison run-- a Batman going through altered versions of his own history; trapped inside the narratives. Still, I enjoyed it. Really.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 9:24 a.m. CST

    NICE!

    by SkidMarkedUndies

    Well done guys.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 9:29 a.m. CST

    And why does Batwoman get J.H. Williams

    by Laserhead

    and Batman suffers through a string of 90s-Image artists??? (not counting Kubert's two issues here, of course)<p>Bug, I feel a lot of the same things you do with regard to DC. Especially with regard to Batman. But are you going to be able to stay away from Morrison and Quitely's Batman in June? I can't.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 9:29 a.m. CST

    Ah ... Loki is a post-op

    by Animation

    Cool. Its always nice to have a spin to sell your comic. :)

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 9:43 a.m. CST

    Dammit...

    by Kid Z

    ...Thanks to Michael Caine, now every time I see the comic book Alfred I think Jarvis went on a crash diet and emigrated over from the Marvel Universe.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 9:43 a.m. CST

    "Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader..."

    by alfiemoon

    The first issue of this story is the best comic of the year so far, for me. I hope that the second part lives up to the promise of the first. If so, it's going to be something very special.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 9:47 a.m. CST

    Bug is right

    by toshiro-solo

    DC is a freaking mess right now. Batman especially. No one could truly have thought that Bruce was really dead, but - to show that to absolutely be the case within one issue of his "death" completely and totally negates any impact that Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader (not to mention Battle for the Cowl) could possibly have on readers. It just feels like the books are in a holding pattern until Bruce comes back, whenever that is. Final Crisis might as well have been a stand alone miniseries, for all of the impact that it had on the non-Bats books in the DCU. Trinity has the big three off the table and disappeared (or at least it did when I dropped it from my pull) but they've still been running around in their own books (and others) the whole time. There is no cohesion at all in the DCU. The only DC book that I'm looking forward to right now is Flash: Rebirth, and that's just because I'm a Barry fan. Blackest Night should be awesome, too, but - with editorial making it the next big EVENT, God knows what will come of it... It's really a shame, but - DC is just plain off the rails right now. Not to say that there are no good DC books out there, but the clusterfuck that has been the big events of the past couple of years has really overshadowed the good work that folks are still doing... Sigh... Rant over. For now.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 9:50 a.m. CST

    Captain Britain and MI: 13

    by Continentalop

    You had me at "vampires on the moon".

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 9:50 a.m. CST

    ambush

    by comicgeekoidtoo

    I think you hit on something that's vitally wrong at the core of almost all the comics being done today, and tv and movies, frankly. Batman 686. Instead of these books trying to be good stories, (and I think expansionof the character is important but secondary to just telling engaging stories), every story tries to be THE BATMAN story. Stop trying to fucking to be the write or artist that is THE writer or artist on a character, you fucking fan boy turned creator mother fuckers! Put your stamp on a character by telling good stories that thrill and entertain and stay with us. That's how they used to do it! You fucking assholes

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:01 a.m. CST

    Nobody ever stays dead, so why bother killing them?

    by Sherman_Lives

    The one comic "death" in recent memory that's had surprising staying power, as these things go, has been Jean Grey. She died in the comics--that was Morrison's doing, too, wasn't it?--and in the third [retch] movie, and she's not (yet) in the new X-Men animated series. I wonder just how long she'll stay in the ground (this time). How long was she "dead" before? I'd want to calculate the real world/616 Marvel timeline formula: 1 of their years for every 5 of ours. Oh, and Dracula's a racist dick. Would a Muslim holding a crescent stop Drac the way a Christian with a cross or Kitty Pryde with a Star of David did?

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:01 a.m. CST

    Ambush, comicgeekoidtoo

    by Continentalop

    I couldn't agree more. Which is why after all these years Denny O'Neil's and Steve Engleharts are two of the most memorable ever. They weren't ever trying to tell the definitive story (be it Batman, Joker or whomever), they were just spinning a good yarn.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:03 a.m. CST

    Sherman_Lives

    by Continentalop

    A Muslim holding a crescent should stop Drac. I mean, when Varnae met Conan the Barbarian years ago he was stopped by the holy relics of Valka and Chthon, gods of his era.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:06 a.m. CST

    Thats ridiculous, comicgeekoidtoo

    by Joenathan

    Basically, you are complaining because some guy IS trying to write a good story, just with the wrong attitude? Ridiculous. <br><Br>Look, you can't, repeat: CAN NOT, CAN'T, tell good "engaging" stories WITHOUT expanding the character. They are reliant upon one another. Ridiculous. Get a real complaint. <br><br>If you don't like the way a character/book/TV show/movie is being done or the direction they are choosing to take, then stop patronizing it! Just stop. Its easy. Just stop. There are no creators, ZERO, who set out to write a bad story. Come on! Just admit that its not currently your cup of tea and move on, instead of making a sweeping indictment of the pop culture industry as a whole as if you're some poor, poor victim. Come on, dude.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:09 a.m. CST

    Favorite Vampire weapon

    by Joenathan

    Throwing Stars of David.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:17 a.m. CST

    Nice call, Ambush

    by The Penultimate Gunslinger

    Instead of more whacked-out Batman stories in the main title, let's have some respect for continuity. Let's find out exactly what the situation is, and why everyone thinks Batman is dead (do they think he died in a helicopter explosion? Do they all know about hm getting fried by Darkseid?) and how exactly did he end up living it up with the cavemen. If I was confident all these plot threads will be tied up, I'd be happy, but It looks like things are going to remain vague. On the up side, this whole "Battle for the cowl" thing might be interesting.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:20 a.m. CST

    Joenathan

    by Continentalop

    I am going to take a different route: <p> Are movies a good as they were in the 70s? Ask any major film critic or respected authority on film (including directors and writers) and they will tell you no, that the 70s was a better period for film. Why? Because it was the way the industry worked back then (they were willing to take chances and cared less for blockbusters) and what type of films the audience were willing to accept. <p> Yes, the audience dictates what type of films is to be made (just like they do comics or other art forms) but it doesn't mean they make the best choice. Just like in an election, the best candidate doesn't always win. Well, in films and comics the best aren't always produced or green lighted, and even if they are made they are sometimes not appreciated by the mainstream. <p> Now, I am not advocating a change in the way it is done. I think free market is the only way to dictate what should be on top, just like how I believe democracy isn't perfect but it is fucking better than the alternatives. <p> However, that isn't to say we can't complain about the direction an art form takes. I can complain about what movies are getting green lighted and which ones are the most popular nowadays, just like I can complain about the way comics are nowadays, just like I can complain about politics and politicians. Going with the political comparison, how the hell are you going to change the country or how people see a situation without debate? Well the same applies to art? How are you going to get people to look at a situation another way without debating it. And sometimes that debating involves criticizing another sides point of view. <p> You’re entire argument that you can only stop buying comic books as a form of criticism is a ludicrous as saying you can only use your vote to criticize a political official. Criticism is the ultimate tool of changing people opinions, even about comics.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:33 a.m. CST

    You can't play the victim, Continentalop

    by Joenathan

    You just can't. Boo Hoo, stories aren't told the way I like... <br><br>A. Thats an over-generalization and everyone knows it, because, if pressed, that guy will come up with plenty of ones he does like.<br><br>B. My point was, what that guy is really saying is: "I'm angry at the creators of the current Batman title for not telling the story I want them too, so I'm gonna throw a fit." and that kind of rampant fanboyism is not a valid criticism.<br><br>Basically, if you want to say, this is why I didn't enjoy this comic and then list your reasons, whether I agree with you or not, thats fine and dandy, its what we do here.<br><br>What you can't do is whine like a little girl, as if pop culture as a whole has had a secret meeting and decided to turn on you personally and give you the finger. Thats ridiculous.<br><br>So, to be clear, in essense, I agree with Bug, DC is a mess and I don't buy any of their stuff anymore, HOWEVER, my gripe with the other guy is that you are not allowed to take it personally.<br><br>Also, 2007 was a fantastic year for film.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:47 a.m. CST

    Ok, Joenathan, I'll bite

    by Homer Sexual

    ....and hate myself later. Plus, it isn't even comics-related (though I also loved the latest issue of Batman). <p> 2007 was a fantastic year for film? Why do you say that? I am curious. I can't even remember what the "good" movies were and that is why I'm asking. <p> I am getting to enjoy the non-continuity stories told in-continuity (when they are good). So although the latest Batman can't possibly be in any sort of continuity, it is highly entertaining, and very well done. Much better than the previous, over-hyped but just decent storyline. And come to think of it, I don't know if Morrison and Quitely followed continuity with New X-Men and I loved that run.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:49 a.m. CST

    wait....2007..that was "crash" wasn't it?

    by Homer Sexual

    I believe Crash won Best Picture in 2007 and that movie sucked. Really sucked! Or was that back in 2006? <p> From a comic geek viewpoint, 2008 was a golden year with Dark Knight and Iron Man. But when the best picture of the year is Tropic Thunder (IMO), I can't really compare it with the 70's.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:50 a.m. CST

    I don't thin the argument is about that.

    by Ambush Bug

    I didn't see Continentalop saying anything about DC putting out stories only HE likes. He's pointing out deficiencies in the storytelling that's been going on and asking for an alternative. I believe the only thing he's asking for and what I'm asking for is a little bit of straight-forward clear storytelling. Some editor has to notice that the narrative in all things bat-related has been so fluid and scatter-shot, that no one really knows where things stand. If the editor doesn't notice that, he's not paying attention. Elseworlds, what ifs, future storylines, experimental ones are ok, but when it happens so frequently to one of the most grounded characters in the DCU, there's something wrong.<br><br> I don't need it spelled out, but a story where I'm not asking myself if this is a dream or Earth 69 or whatever would be nice occasionally.<br><br> Coming off of FINAL CRISIS, the editors should have been able to see that a straightforward story would be much more fitting and received better by readers.<br><br> It's not about what I want from a comic. It's about what the comic itself if lacking, and BATMAN #686 lacked the grounding that fans that have stuck through Morrison's run so desperately need right now.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:55 a.m. CST

    2007 WAS a good year in film...

    by Continentalop

    ...but I am not going to compare it 1971-1975. Hell, I have a hard time comparing it to 1976-1980 as well. But that is just my opinion. <p> Also, lets look at movies again. Only an X amount of films will be released per year to the theatre. That is based on the number of movie-goers. If said movie-goers prefer torture porn, guess what? I am not seeing pretty much any horror movies that year because almost every horror movie will be a splatter film. If Michael Bay-style action movies are the trend, well there goes pretty much every action movie out there I was going to see. <p> So great, my choices are now limited. I could complain to the studios, but they probably wouldn't listen because they could argue there is not a demand for the type of films I want. However, if I complain to other people, I might be able to make a grassroots movement that makes people realize that, yes, there is better choices out there. That is what happened in the mid to late 60s in film; a number of film critics and film teachers argued and criticize what they perceived what is wrong with American film, and their criticisms and championing of offbeat filmmakers shaped the taste and opinions of the New Hollywood Generation (Coppola, Scorsese, Spielberg, Friedkin, etc.). <p> However, what happened in the 80s? American Film took a down turn (and anybody who claims 80 films are great has no understanding of cinema). Sure there were some good films, but over all they had become bloated and pointless. Well, what should you do? Keep your mouth shut or tell people when they ask (or don’t even ask) that “Hey, things were better in the 70’s! Those were better movies!” And some people heard those complaints and were inspired by them to help start the independent film movement, leading up to the Sundance Film Festival. . Well, same thing applies to comic books. If I see something that I don't like, I criticize about it. I make my argument why I don't think it works as a piece of art. And if there is a current trend I don't like, well I criticize the trend, especially considering the fact that the market is pretty much dominated by two companies.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:56 a.m. CST

    what about

    by Joenathan

    Children of Men? Assasination of Jesses James? There Will Be Blood? Zodia? Eastern Promises? Rescue Dawn? The Lookout? King of Kong? Hot Fuzz? Gone, Baby, Gone? Juno? Ratatouille? Superbad?<br><br>I think Crash was 2006?<br><Br>The idea of Morrison and Quitley visiting Batman the same way they did Superman makes me giddy.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:57 a.m. CST

    Bug

    by Joenathan

    Continentalop and I were discussing the other guy's statements, not his own responses.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:58 a.m. CST

    A lot of Morrison's run was set in continuity.

    by Ambush Bug

    It wasn't until the last arc that he left the reservation.<br><br> The drug storyline, the Cassandra Nova stuff, all in continuity. And really good too.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11 a.m. CST

    Continentalop

    by Joenathan

    I'm all for criticism. I'm against matyrdom.<br><br>Also, I'm halting the film metaphor before we get too far off task. <br><Br>My original gripe was with the implied intent of the guy's complaint. Criticism is one thing and when well done, it does affect change. In fact, Id say that comics and the criticism of them are why we are all here. Fanboy whining, on the other hand, as if DC were waging a personal vendetta on your childhood is annoying and embarrassing.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:01 a.m. CST

    I'd just like a Batman title...

    by The Penultimate Gunslinger

    where I could follow it each month, know exactly what the situation is and have it pick up from there. I don't mind them doing Elseworld type stuff, I just like them to follow some sort of continuity. That's why I'm enjoying Amazing Spider-Man at the moment. It's by no means the best book out there, but when you pick it up each week you know exactly what the deal is, and they still do some cool (and some not-so-cool) stuff. The trouble with DC letting writers like Morrisson go crazy without any restraint is that you feel like you're reading a completly new book any time a new creative team comes on board.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:02 a.m. CST

    Actually AMBUSH BUG

    by Continentalop

    My big argument with Joenathan here is that somehow we are not allowed to criticize comics because that is what the market dictates, or that we are not allowed to criticize culture. I found both arguments absurd. In fact, usually the best art is an attack and criticism against culture (The Graduate anyone?) <p> But personally, my post at 10:01:55 was exactly about what you are now saying. I just want better narratives. If I can't understand what you are saying how can I possible like it. <p>It reminds me of one of my favorite Charles Bukowski quotes, 'An intellectual takes simple idea and makes it complex, an artist takes a complex idea and makes it simple." I am looking for more artist in comics and less intellectuals.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:02 a.m. CST

    Dracula on the moon...

    by mullymt

    Like in Dr. McNinja? Which every person in this talkback should be reading?

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:04 a.m. CST

    Joenathan

    by Continentalop

    You list the best movies of 2007 and you exclude No Country for Old Men? Shame on you.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:05 a.m. CST

    The first half of Morrisson's run...

    by The Penultimate Gunslinger

    ... was pretty awesome. And the build up to RIP, with the whole "some evil dude has been plotting against Batman" got me all worked up. But, mind you, so did the build up to Secret Invasion. And both were dissapointing as hell. I'm just hoping Blackest Night doesn't follow the same trend, as I'm loving the Green Lantern titles right now.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:06 a.m. CST

    I loved the Cassandra Nova storyline

    by Joenathan

    My favorite thing about that run, was the attention paid to Cyclops, not just making him a stronger character, but I loved the visor hand control, so that he was no longer unable to use his beams should someone bind his hands, a costume design flaw.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:06 a.m. CST

    I don't think Neil Gaiman will write in-continuity anymore.

    by rev_skarekroe

    Gaiman: OK, in my story the Green Goblin comes out of hell and attacks Spider-Man on the planet Krypton!<p>Editor: Um, but the Green Goblin is alive right now. Also, we can't use Krypton because it's a DC<p>Gaiman: Fuck you! I'm Neil Fucking Gaiman! I'm a best selling author! They're making movies of my books, and they DON'T suck! You're lucky I acknowledge that funnybooks even exist anymore! Now crawl, worm! CRAWL!!!<p>Editor: Yes sir, Mr. Gaiman, whatever you say!

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:07 a.m. CST

    Cyclops Visor Control

    by Continentalop

    First mentioned in Giant-Sized X-Men #1. Good use of pulling out a forgotten little tidbit though.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:09 a.m. CST

    Oh, crap

    by Joenathan

    I can't believe I did that, Continentalop, that was my favorite one of the year too. I must have just subconciously assumed that it was a given.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:10 a.m. CST

    rev_skarekroe

    by The Penultimate Gunslinger

    Gaiman's Eternals, that was in continuity, what with mentions of the Marvel Civil War and all that. But I get what you mean - big name writers come on board and are allowed to do whatever the fuck they want. I'd rather just have a regular comic book writer writing good stories on a title for a few years, than a big name coming and screwing up continuity over a few months, then buggering off to let everyone else sort out/ignore his mess.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:11 a.m. CST

    Artists versus intellectuals

    by Joenathan

    I don't disagree, but I would say that no one sets out to do a bad story, so saying: "just write good stories" is silly. Anyway, critize art and culture all you want, just don't critize water for being wet.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:13 a.m. CST

    Really, as embittered as we bat-fans are, I want to know

    by Laserhead

    Can you keep from buying Morrison and Quitely's Batman?<p>Fuck no. At least for me.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:14 a.m. CST

    I had a problem with Gaiman's Eternals

    by Continentalop

    I just felt like they were not the same characters that Krbry made. I mean, Sprite in Kirby's run mischievous, yes, but he is also noble helping The Forgotten One in his fight against the Celestials. But Gaiman just came up with this "Hey, wouldn't it be cool if ZUras killed a kid at the end" and then proceeded to think of a justification for him to do it. <p> Plus, they insinuate that the Eternals are all hundreds of thousands years old. Ikarus is like a third generation or fourth generation Eternal, and is like 40,000 years old. <p> Just little things like that drove me nuts.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:14 a.m. CST

    Joenathan

    by The Penultimate Gunslinger

    I wish water wasn't wet. It'd be great to go swimming and not have to dry off afterwards...

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:15 a.m. CST

    I will buy it

    by Joenathan

    Because really, when somebody calls Morrison a hack because of FC, all you have to do is say: What about All Star Superman and they go: Oh yeah...

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:17 a.m. CST

    you and me both, PG

    by Joenathan

    you and me both... fucking water...

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:18 a.m. CST

    I read both volumes of All-Star Superman last weekend

    by Laserhead

    Tears in my fucking eyes. So much I hadn't noticed when picking it up every three months. "One day they will join you in the sun." "All that is impure will be burned away, and only what is strong and true will remain." I think, as a man, you get three cries your entire life. So I used one of mine on All-Star Superman.<p>Felt good to admit that.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:18 a.m. CST

    Well, Marvel screwed up The Eternals way before Gaiman.

    by rev_skarekroe

    Kirby intended for them to exist in their own universe. Then they got shoe-horned into the Marvel Universe, which was a bad idea for a lot of reasons.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:18 a.m. CST

    All Star Superman

    by The Penultimate Gunslinger

    was prett awesome. But maybe Morrisson should stick to out-of-continuity stories. They seem to suit him better.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:18 a.m. CST

    Yes, no one sets out to write a bad story...

    by Continentalop

    ...just like no politician sets out to run this country into the ground. <p> And yes, you can't criticize water for being wet, but you can criticize it if it constantly tries to douse you. The same with how you can criticize America for the last eight years and our "spend like it will never end" mentality we had.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:20 a.m. CST

    Yeah, the Eternals were never meant to be in Mainstream marvel

    by Continentalop

    But I was always glad they were. The Celestials are just to fucking cool not to have floating around the Marvel Universe.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:23 a.m. CST

    yes, Continetalop

    by Joenathan

    You CAN critize water for its ACTIONS, just not its state of being. <br><br>Also, you can critize softened water for tasting weird...

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:28 a.m. CST

    Well culture is ACTIONS

    by Continentalop

    I can't criticize a culture if it doesn't do something. Unless I am going to criticize their laziness or indifference. <p> And being a violent culture or a sexist culture or a jaded, cynical culture isn't a state of being, that is an ACTION. They choose to be that way. A state of being would be to criticize someone for their race or gender or age or something like that. <p>

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:30 a.m. CST

    Gaiman's Eternals was simply boring and slow

    by Homer Sexual

    I don't think Gaiman is as good as he used to be. But he is still good...mostly doing kid stuff now...Coraline is awesome! <p> The Eternals wasn't bad, but it wasn't much of anything. Very little happened and it was dull. There was one really good Eternals limited series a long time ago, dealing with the romance of Thena and the Deviant guy, can't remember the name. <p> Ok, I'll stop after this, I swear. But the only movie listed I really liked from 2007 was King of Pong. I was underwhelmed by TWBB and NCFOM, both by filmmakers who I generally love. But Blood is no Boogie Nights and Country is no Fargo. Probably some will say Blood and Country are superior, but not me. Those movies were more artistic exercises and left me cold. Unlike the 90's work of their creators. <p> Brolin is a perfect choice to play Jonah Hex! That is awesome. And Malkovich as the villain? This should be another outstanding comic movie.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:31 a.m. CST

    ContinentalOp

    by Laserhead

    I completely agree with you, but I've had the exact same debate with the same person, and no matter what pearls of logic and reason you toss out, you're ice-skating uphill. The quick-leaps to argument through analogy, the narrow framing of the issue, etc.<p>Save yourself, or you'll hate yourself in the morning.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:34 a.m. CST

    Homer Sexual

    by Continentalop

    Deviants name was Kro. <p> Do you mean King of Pong of King of Kong? While I prefer Fargo, No Country for Old Men was a damned good movie. Maybe even great. <p> As for There Will Be Blood, I found it vastly superior to Boogie Nights. Truth be told, I am not that big of Boogie Nights fan. I find it trying to be a mix of Scorsese and Altman but with none of the power. But that is just my opinion.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:36 a.m. CST

    Laserhead

    by Continentalop

    The funny thing is I have read both "How to Win Friends and Influence People" and "The 48 Laws of Power" and they both tell you to avoid arguments. They never change a persons opinion and leave both sides sticking to their guns. And yet I keep trying when I am here. I guess I never learn.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:44 a.m. CST

    Joenathan is a moron

    by comicgeekoidtoo

    who doesnt know how to read a post. go fuck yerself and read my post again.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:44 a.m. CST

    Continentalop

    by Joenathan

    I think we're argueing semantics AND wandering a little far a field, metaphorically. <br><br>Either way, the transiet nature of comics is just the way it is. BIG stories now become little discarded ones later. I'd rather complain about how terrible Leifeld is, then bother railing against something that has always been and always will be.<br><br>Of course... I guess Leifeld has always sucked, so... six of one, half dozen of the other...

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:45 a.m. CST

    im so fucking tired

    by comicgeekoidtoo

    OF MORONS like Joenathan picking a fight out of thing air because he doesn't know how to read.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:45 a.m. CST

    Bloodwynd

    by fiester

    Seems like a really good example of what happens when white guy nerds try to write black characters--I'm not saying it's impossible, but more often than not in the past they have fallen flat or worse. I think things are different now: comic writers can have a black character who is not from the ghetto or Africa.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:46 a.m. CST

    comicgeekoidtoo

    by Joenathan

    No, I will not! Thank you very much.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:47 a.m. CST

    thing air?

    by Joenathan

    Was that my lack of readin or your lack of spelling? I'm not sure, because I don't know how to read...

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 1:02 p.m. CST

    Thor and 80's Movies

    by gooseud

    Thor is indeed the cat's meow, if you arent reading it, you might be mentally retarded. Also, the 70's were the pinnacle of filmaking, but the 80's were the action movie pinnacle. Aliens is, quite simply, the greatest sci-fi action movie ever made. Go watch Predator now, in 2009, and it looks like it could be released in theaters tomorrow (and be so bad-ass that the candy ass 17 year olds of today would piss their pants watching it). Lethal Weapon, Robocop, all classics. To say nothing of the works of John Carpenter! For anyone who thinks today's bullshit action movies could hold Carpenter's dick, I have three words for you: Six Demon Bag.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 1:06 p.m. CST

    by Homer Sexual

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 1:15 p.m. CST

    White Guys Writing Black Characters.

    by Homer Sexual

    Obviously, this sort of discussion is tricky since no one can only write themself. Although Bendis certainly tries (sorry, couldn't resist). <p> That said, when I finally learned that Christopher Priest was white, I was shocked because his Black Panther just seemed so authentic. Moreso than Hudlin, who is black. So it can be done, but is often done poorly. <p> Thanks for the Kro i.d. That was a good one. The art was subpar by today's standards but the story was very good. Mostly everything I know about the Eternals came from that series. <p> Don't hate me, but I read that Thor and I liked it, but I didn't think it was the cat's meow. Loki's setup was pretty obvious and standard, though the fight scene was good.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 1:20 p.m. CST

    Hey Bug, what's the first book you read...

    by Squashua

    ...when you get to the toilet after coming back from the comic store? :D

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 1:22 p.m. CST

    HS - C. P. is white?

    by Squashua

    I thought Priest was black. Yep, he's black. Jim Owsley.<br><br> http://tinyurl.com/owsley

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 1:25 p.m. CST

    HS - the British Sci-Fi Writer C.P. is white.

    by Squashua

    Different guy, same name.<br><br> http://tinyurl.com/bj6q2c

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 1:30 p.m. CST

    Ok, something is wrong here.

    by Homer Sexual

    Christopher Priest is, I think, British and he writes mostly novels. He wrote The Prestige, which I read because I was a fan of the Black Panther when he wrote it. He is credited with writing both Panther and Prestige, as well as a lot more. <p> I have heard that Wikipedia can be unreliable, though I have never found it to be so. And that listing is amazingly detailed. However, it makes no mention of him also being a novelist, writing the Prestige or other non-comic material. So I think that Priest the novelist/comic writer is more likely real than the comic writer who changed his name. Especially because, I think, he couldn't be a published author and legally change his name and publish under the name of another author. Otherwise, I could call myself Chuck Pahlaniuk and get published.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 1:39 p.m. CST

    Well, shut my mouth.

    by Homer Sexual

    I guess since comic writer uses the "J" he can get by. Like the long-forgotten Melrose Place actress Vanessa L. Williams. <p> No wonder his Panther seemed so real. Sadly, judging by his Wiki description, he sounds like a jerk. I am so old I can actually remember Jim Owsley.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 1:40 p.m. CST

    There are far too many comic writers

    by Snookeroo

    who SET OUT to write an epic, not just a good story.<br><br>Those are two different goals. And frankly, right now I'd just settle for some good stories<br><br>And I agree -- The Amazing Spider-Man has been pretty consistent lately with spinning some good yarns. Notice how I worked "spinning" into that. Heh.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 1:45 p.m. CST

    Isn't Aja on Iron Fist

    by kenjinattix

    Thats a regular gig right?

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 1:47 p.m. CST

    I definitely owe Jim Owsley a favor.

    by Homer Sexual

    Because I would never have read The Prestige if not for him, and that book is really outstanding. <p> I remember lots of the stuff he wrote under his original name, liked most of it, like Power Man/Iron Fist, but that name change is really weird. Really. Weird.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 1:48 p.m. CST

    Aja's Avengers

    by Homer Sexual

    Looked awesome! It looked so good, in fact, that I was slow to pick up on the ridiculous Lee writing.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 1:51 p.m. CST

    proved my point loser

    by comicgeekoidtoo

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 1:52 p.m. CST

    the gaiman story

    by comicgeekoidtoo

    is it final proof that he just wants to be Alan Moore in the worst way?

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 1:59 p.m. CST

    about time Fables got some props

    by v1cious

    this one of the best reads out there right now. with the introduction Mister Dark, this series has been taken to a whole new level.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 2:12 p.m. CST

    Shit, I'll buy NONE of these and go back to read Sandman

    by DOGSOUP

    I got the 4 bigass tomes might as well justify the $400 once again

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 2:14 p.m. CST

    Continentalop

    by hst666

    I perfectly understand your point and in no way agree with the mischaracterizations and arguments of Joenathan <p><p> However, I have one small quibble about your movie statemnents. I refer specifically to the following: <p><p> "That is what happened in the mid to late 60s in film; a number of film critics and film teachers argued and criticize what they perceived what is wrong with American film, and their criticisms and championing of offbeat filmmakers shaped the taste and opinions of the New Hollywood Generation (Coppola, Scorsese, Spielberg, Friedkin, etc.)." <p><p> I don't know who fed you that line of bullshit, but that is not quite right. It is true that many late 60s through early 80s learned more sophisticated techniques and absorbed more foreign techniques and ideas into their work. However, the primary reason that American Cinema flourished in that period can be summarized n one word - "Television" <p><p> Due to the spread of TV, Movie sales dropped considerably until by the early 60s movies were no longer considered a great investment. By the late 60s, the only people primarily involved were people who loved movies. This created the atmosphere necessary for actual artists to flourish. Star Wars was the beginning of the end, although I will say the period between 1977 and 1982 still didn't have the full-on blockbuster mentality either.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 2:15 p.m. CST

    It is thue that many "Creators" in the late 60s...

    by hst666

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 2:51 p.m. CST

    six demon bag

    by Joenathan

    Did you pay your dues, Jack?<br><br>Yes sir, the check is in the mail.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 3:21 p.m. CST

    I wouldn't worry, Continentalop.

    by stones_throw

    The worst case scenario would be WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE MAN OF TOMORROW? with Batman pasted in over Superman, but despite the title, WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE CAPED CRUSADER? isn't really that at all. The title actually does have some significance beyond the reference to Moore's story, since all the guests are literally trying to work out what happened to Batman. Although it's not quite as cool as Moore's title, since that could have been the article Lois Lane was writing as well as a resolution for the Earth-1 Superman.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 3:34 p.m. CST

    stones_throw

    by comicgeekoidtoo

    fair enough.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 3:46 p.m. CST

    Random Thoughts

    by Fygar

    -Morrison seems more concerned with showing off how much comic trivia he knows than writing a good story. -Ok, so Batman died in a helicopter explosion, but also got killed by Darkseid, and by the way, he is also a caveman. WTF???? -DC needs to make a difinitive decision about continuity whether it be a single universe, 52 universes, or whatever. Just make up your minds! -Let's have some writers that love the characters more than themselves.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 5:47 p.m. CST

    hst666,gooseud

    by Continentalop

    Hst666: Ok, I admit it was an overly simplified explanation; obviously other things helped bring about the New Hollywood Wave of filmmakers. One of those things was the collapse of the studio system helped in part by television. But still, the studios would have continued turing out crap if it wasn't for a bunch of young, hungry filmmakers who thought the system needed to be overturned. I mean, if they hadn't come in the big studios would still be happy turning out films like Dr. Doolittle and Helly, Dolly. <p> gooseued: Yes, the 80s had many good genre flicks, and was kind of a golden age for sci-fi and horror movies (excluding the slasher films which became ubiquitous with the decade). But for action movies, I am still going to go with the 70s: French Connection, the Seven-Ups, Rolling Thunder, the Warriors, Taking of Pelham One Two Three, Dirty Harry, the Gauntlet, Death Wish, and, hell, even Apocalypse Now could be considered an action movie. <p> I just got five words for you: Warriors, come out to pla-a-a-ay!

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 8:43 p.m. CST

    I'm Directing A WARRIORS Spin Off

    by Buzz Maverik

    It's called BASEBALL FURIES. Wrote the script years ago. The premise: after getting their asses handed to them by Ajax and the boyz, three of the Furies were dragged off by a mad scientist performing cryogenic experiments. They were frozen but the process was imperfect so their bodies aged while they retained the "minds" of 17 year old boppers, can ya dig it, suckahs? After the scientist dies from too many whippets, the "boyz" unthaw in a world they no longer know. I've got Kevin Costner, Dennis Quaid and Ving Rhames starring. James Remar is going to reprise his role as Ajax. Tony Danza will finally get to play Swan (he quit the first time because the producers wouldn't let him box during filming). So you know what this means, right? I'm jetting off to England to get measured for my Purdy. I know just the engravings I want. This job is just in time, as my last H2 needs an oil change and I'm running low of Cuban cigars.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 8:54 p.m. CST

    Currently Scripting BAD NEWS WATHCMEN

    by Buzz Maverik

    INT. ARCADE -- NIGHT<p> Laurie faces Walter at the air hockey table.<p>LAURIE:"Alright, if I win, you play for the Watchmen."<p>WALTER:"And if I win?"<p>INT. OWL SHIP -- NIGHT<p>An angry Laurie throws herself into the passenger seat.<p>COMEDIAN:"What happened?"<p>LAURIE:"I have to go torture Topknots with him Friday night."<p>COMEDIAN:"What? Are you kidding? Girls your age don't torture topknots."<p>LAURIE:"They do too. Where have you been?"

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 9:11 p.m. CST

    Continental: Action Movies

    by gooseud

    We are both right, in that the 70's action was more gritty (although early 80's Road Warrior/Escape From NY was plenty gritty) and 80's action was more effects driven and flashy (not a bad thing when CGI isnt involved). Thats more a case of personal taste more then merit, although I will always state that Lethal Weapon, completely untouched in every way aside from removing Mel's mullet and adjusting the Vietnam aspects, is a 150 mil blockbuster today. Its amazing how well that movie holds up as a pure action kickass. You will never hear me argue AGAINST the merits of Dirty Harry and Apocalypse Now, I just personally prefer the 80's stuff. Regardless, everything that came after couldnt hold the dick of the 70s/80s, with the sanitized, lowest common denominator PG-13 "action", if you can call it that. If I have to see one more PG-13 "cut away just as the monster attacks so we dont have to show blood" crapfest, I'll scream.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 9:16 p.m. CST

    China is here, Mr. Burton

    by gooseud

    What does that mean, anyway? China is here? I dont even know what the hell that means.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 10:10 p.m. CST

    Stoney.

    by MikeTheSpike

    "a reference to Alan Moore’s classic “Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?”, by the way." We know. We're posting to an online BB about comic books. We're all well aware.

  • Feb. 18, 2009, 11:42 p.m. CST

    the problem with batman...

    by sonnyhooper

    ....is that he is beyond being just a "comic book character" anymore. batman and superman are basically bigger than the medium that spawned them and because of that, it almost becomes impossible to stuff them back into the "box" that is the monthly comic book. <p> i understand the frustration of every writer trying to write "THE" batman story. i really do. but the thing is, it's been almost 25 years since BATMAN; YEAR ONE came out, so the character is in desperate need of the next "definitive" story. i think all that morrison and gaimen are trying to do is show the average rabid fan boy that batman does indeed have a history that started long before frank miller showed up and is going to have to embrace the entire history to move forward. <p> having said that, i go back to my original point. i think when you are dealing with the icons (superman and batman) the only way to go is to throw "continuity" out the fucking window. reading ALL STAR SUPERMAN makes it all too clear to me. sure, maybe you need continuity to make characters like aquaman, or thor, or the x-men or the hulk interesting. but when you are doing stories about modern myths that transcend the comic medium, like batman and superman do, the only "continuity" you need to stick to is the basic truths of their origins.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 12:34 a.m. CST

    The "problem" with big event stories

    by Continentalop

    While I don’t like big event stories and “the next big _____ story” I will say I can’t hold the writers and publishers completely responsible. They are only giving the audience what they want. The readers of modern comics want big events and storylines that completely alter everything about that character. So the writers are only giving them what they want. Still, I prefer stories that are much less on “importance” and more emphasis on “interesting.”<p> That is why I like Captain Britain & MI:13. It still exists within the Marvel Universe continuity, but it is far enough away that it isn’t bogged down by the need to make earth-shattering storylines or get caught up in all the drama of the latest crossover. Sure they have Dracula attacking England, a major crisis, but they milk it to make it feel like it is the most important event since the birth of Jesus. Captain Britain just does what old comics do: deliver good, interesting stories from month to month. <p> This is also why I liked the last issue of X-Force: a fucking mind-blowing issue, as emotional as the death of the Wasp in Secret Invasion but without feeling like a gimmick or shock ending (yes it was a gimmick and shock ending, but the phrase here is “without feeling’).

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 12:38 a.m. CST

    Sonnyhooper

    by Continentalop

    I have long thought that continuity was the enemy of the DC Universe and not its friend. To me each DC character operates best as a self-contained universe, with occasional team ups (World's FInest, Brave & the Bold, Justice League). <p> Besides, each DC character pretty much operates in his own city (Metropolis, Gotham, Coast City, Keystone City, etc.) so it would be easy for them to be self-contained and have their own continuity.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 5:57 a.m. CST

    Ambush Bug...

    by alfiemoon

    "I didn't see Continentalop saying anything about DC putting out stories only HE likes. He's pointing out deficiencies in the storytelling that's been going on and asking for an alternative. I believe the only thing he's asking for and what I'm asking for is a little bit of straight-forward clear storytelling. Some editor has to notice that the narrative in all things bat-related has been so fluid and scatter-shot, that no one really knows where things stand". - - - - - - - - - - - - That would be a great defence of his viewpoint if it were true. The truth is, there are plenty of Batbooks available that *do* tell straightforward stories in a clear fashion (Detective Comics, Nightwing, Robin - even the recent two-parters that crossed over between the main Batman title and Detective Comics). However, no-one seems to be paying any attention to those - they're more interested in the stuff that's less conventional. That's fine, but to buy those books and then complain that there's no alternative seems a little nonsensical when there ARE plenty of other books offering a different style of storytelling.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 5:57 a.m. CST

    Ambush Bug (part 2)...

    by alfiemoon

    "Coming off of FINAL CRISIS, the editors should have been able to see that a straightforward story would be much more fitting and received better by readers." - - - - - - - - - I don't agree. Fans aren't the people that writers and editors should be looking to for direction. As I've said before, I thought that Final Crisis was a very well-written book that experimented with new storytelling methods and intentionally bucked many of the storytelling conventions of comics. I can understand why some people might not have liked it, but to complain that certain books are told in an unusual or experimental style seems like whining when there ARE so many other conventional superhero books available.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 5:58 a.m. CST

    kenjinattix...

    by alfiemoon

    Sadly, Aja hasn't been drawing Iron Fist for quite some time. Travel Foreman is the book's regular artist at the moment.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 5:58 a.m. CST

    Fygar...

    by alfiemoon

    Batman didn't die in the helicopter explosion. You can tell this from the fact that he wrote an account if it afterwards. It still surprises me that some people think that Batman was meant to have died at the end of that issue.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 7:04 a.m. CST

    I've said it before

    by gooseud

    and I'll say it again: I have no idea why people read iconic books like Batman or Superman, or major crossovers. They always suck. They have sucked for years. They will continue to suck. Alot of fans are like Rihanna running back to Chris Brown after getting her ass beat. Name me a list of 5 company crossovers that were good in the past 25 years. Go ahead. Even the ones that seem decent at the time (Crisis, Secret Wars) are pretty much unreadable in 2009. Yet we still get reviews of these books being like "It didnt live up to expectations" Really? You had expectations? Seriously?

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 7:05 a.m. CST

    Buzz....

    by BangoSkank

    You can die from too many whippets?

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 7:15 a.m. CST

    The Great George Perez

    by Star Hump

    I got a laugh earlier today when I was flipping thru JLA/Avengers #4 (2003)and sure enough, right near the climax of the battle, Perez put Bloodwynd in there. Bigger than life. OK, Perez is top 3 best superhero artists EVER, right? RIGHT?

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 7:34 a.m. CST

    Buzz Maverik's BEVERLY HILLS MUTANT

    by Buzz Maverik

    is now in post-production. Which means I'm one busy little talkbacker, what with BASEBALL FURIES in pre-production and writing BAD NEWS WATCHMEN in the editing room. I say things like,"More glass..." and "Use that scene I was going to shoot but didn't..." Plus, the wind is pretty fierce which pulls on the skeet when my assistant throws it off the roof.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 10:26 a.m. CST

    Don't give up, Jack!

    by Joenathan

    Alright fine I won't, Wang, lets eat our way out.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 10:28 a.m. CST

    I totally agree with Sonnyhopper

    by Joenathan

    the best way to use Superman and Batmn is in self contained, non-continuity beholden maxi-series (aside from JLA stuff) Lets be honest, the best Superman and Batman stories are the ones free to move around without the massive constraints of continuity.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 10:31 a.m. CST

    alfiemoon

    by Joenathan

    you complete me.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 10:32 a.m. CST

    Goose - Good Cross-overs

    by Joenathan

    Age of Apocalypse

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 10:33 a.m. CST

    Oh wait... you wanted five...

    by Joenathan

    fuck... uh... Age of Apocalypse... Thats all I got, but it was and is still good!

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 11:08 a.m. CST

    Big Events...

    by Fygar

    suck because they never pay off what they promise. <P> House of M - No more mutants! Except all the popluar ones. <P> Civil War - A war breaks out between the heros! But no one of not dies. <P> Secret Invasion - Some of Marvel's heros are Skrulls! But the biggest name was Spiderwoman. <P> Final Crisis - Seven issues of Morrison masturbating.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 11:29 a.m. CST

    ah, Fygar

    by Joenathan

    Ah, perhaps you aren't familiar with the supervillian known as Slug? He was a skrull. Mockingbird was also a skrull and they don't get much bigger than that...

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 11:49 a.m. CST

    gooseud, call me Rihanna

    by Homer Sexual

    I feel so busted. I am totally one of those people who continues to buy the "events" and then talk about how much they suck. Ouch! <p> Age of Apocalypse was indeed super awesome. Um, urgh, I....liked Infinite Crisis. <p> As emotional as the death of the Wasp? But that wasn't emotional at all. Not the slightest. That's why it was lame.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 11:50 a.m. CST

    Secret War: was it good?

    by gooseud

    I've been kicking around my "crossovers suck" comment, and I'm wondering, was Secret Wars actually good? Doom stealing Beyonder's powers, intro of the Venom suit, etc. Am I underrating that one?

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 11:53 a.m. CST

    Sweet Christmas

    by Mr.FTW

    alfiemoon - I don't think people have a problem with guys like Morrison writting crazy storys as much as they have a problem with those crazy stories being shoe horned into mainstream continuity. All Star Superman is great because it is an isolated story set apart from the DC universe. Had Morrison and DC placed that story into continuity, while the reaction wouldn't have been as severe people would have been screaming about how is DC going to fix Superman now that he is dieing. It's not the type of story telling it's the way the story was presented to the reader. <p> Continentalop - As for writter trying to write the next definitive story for a character they need to look past what their personal favorite comic era is and look to what is the core of the character. Look at what the Nolan's came up for the Joker in The Dark Knight. That is the key, look at what makes the character work and leave all of the silver age and golden age silliness in the past. <p> gooseud - I'll probably get railed for this but I'll go on record and say the Infinity Gauntlet was an awesome mega cross over event. China is here.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 11:55 a.m. CST

    crossovers: Identity Crisis

    by gooseud

    was awesome. Im the only one alive who thinks that, but that is one of the most underrated books Ive ever read. The race to save Robin's father, Superman standing like a stone in the middle of the room scouring every inch with his X ray vision, the epic battle with Deathstroke. Granted the reveal was lame, but the first 6 issues of that series were killer.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 12:25 p.m. CST

    Identity Crisis

    by Fygar

    I enjoyed as well. As I did Infinite Crisis. Superboy Prime was a great villain.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 12:28 p.m. CST

    Goose

    by Joenathan

    Secret Wars is a nostalgia, gimmick book, not bad, of course, but not good in a worth re-visiting for the story kind of way. It most certainly isn't a 6.9 on the richtor scale, baby.<br><br>I have a feeling the Crossover Event Rhianna fandom is the next "trapped in amber"<Br><br>I think Age of Apocalypse deserves much more accolades than it gets. That was one tight, tight crossover and some fantastic world building. It was what, 18 issues or so, all told and yet felt complete and accessable and ended up tying up in a nice neat little bow. Good, good stuff and designs too. Who helmed that particular story and how come the very next issue back to normal, the X-man went right back to sucking balls?

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 1:05 p.m. CST

    Infinity Guantlet

    by Homer Sexual

    was indeed very good, I can remember it so clearly years later. But it wasn't a crossover, it was a self-contained story. <p> Age of Apocalypse was indeed a big cross over and it was basically an out-of-continuity story, which is probably why it was so great. X-books tend to be very mired in continutiy. Madureira's art was a joy to behold. <p> While Secret Wars is dated, I still find it enjoyable. The Wasp was actually a prominent, entertaining character during this time. Spidey's black suit, She-Hulk joining the FF, the creation of Volcana and Titania, who then hooked up with Molecule Man (leading to great character development) and Absorbing Man (well, lots of smashing). The worst thing about it was the "X-Men are outsiders, we hate everyone and everyone hates us" thing.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 1:15 p.m. CST

    Secret Wars

    by Continentalop

    I never was a fan of Secret Wars. When it came out it was considered this incredibly big event, yet it felt like it was just a gimmick. Especially after Crisis came out, which felt like an even more significant story that had even more impact on its Universe. <p> Having said that, I will say one thing in defense of Secret Wars. It wasn't a crossover series, it was a self-contained 12 issue limited series that had consequences on the rest of the Marvel Universe: the Venom costume, Thing staying on Battleworld, She-Hulk joining the FF, Colossus having an affair with the alien girl resulting in the end of his relationship with Kitty Pryde, etc. <p> Secret Wars II, however, was a bloated crossover that just sucked.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 1:18 p.m. CST

    Age of Apocalypse

    by Joenathan

    I think it was in continuity, just an alternate time-line. Besides they back-filled tons of history into those issues, so it felt like regular continuity.<br><br>Yeah, that was crazy, remember when Joe Mad was awesome? His sunfire was killer.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 1:30 p.m. CST

    The "epic battle with Deathstroke" in Identity Crisis

    by Laserhead

    Can anyone think of a plausible explanation for why Kyle Rayner would try to punch Deathstroke (and with his ring hand), rather than, you know, using his power ring?

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 1:32 p.m. CST

    "No one sets out to write a bad story"

    by Laserhead

    Chuck Austen.<p>Checkmate.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 1:36 p.m. CST

    Age of Apocalypse was ok

    by Continentalop

    I guess it just felt like someone said "hey, I want to do my own dystopia "Days of Future Past" thing!" <p>

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 1:38 p.m. CST

    Infinity Gauntlet

    by Mr.FTW

    Maybey you need to go back and look it over again. The Infinity Gauntlet was a huge Marvel Universe cross over touching every major part of the Marvel U. Almost every title had tie in issues.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 1:50 p.m. CST

    continentalop

    by Joenathan

    well sure, true, the dystopian future/alternative timeline thing is almost uniquely X-men, however, the cross-over itself was masterfully designed and executed as far as story goes.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 1:51 p.m. CST

    Kyle punching

    by Joenathan

    Yeah, why not use... I don't know... a giant green boxing glove?

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 2:07 p.m. CST

    Austen wasn't Checkmate...

    by SleazyG.

    ...that was Bruce Jones who set out to write a bad story. And succeeded phenomenally. His one-story arc on CHECKMATE was goddamned awful--they should have just cancelled the book when Rucka left instead of having one shitty arc by Jones that had nothing to do with all the previous issue and was instead an incredibly lame, incredibly stupid superhero story with a coupla Rooks thrown in to distract us.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 2:13 p.m. CST

    X-Men dystopian future/alternative timeline thing

    by Continentalop

    You know, I loved "Days of future past" but I got to say it opened an entire can of worms for the X-Men books. I mean, the team of mutants faced more bad potential timelines and people from the future than the FF did, and they OWN a time machine. <p> You got Rachel Summers, Nmrod, Cable, Stryfe, Bishob, Age of Apocalyspe, Dark Beast, Trevor Fitzroy, and a bunch of others. And almost every story involving Magik had her traveling to a possible horrible future for the X-Men or New Mutants. <p> Age of Apocalypse might have been well executed, but I guess I was just going through X-Men dystopian timeline fatigue.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 2:15 p.m. CST

    I meant 'Checkmate' in the literal sense of the word

    by Laserhead

    Like, 'Your argument is now the equivalent of a king in check.'<p>Like, 'There. I named someone who must clearly set out to write a bad story.'

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 3:03 p.m. CST

    Continentalop

    by Joenathan

    The culmination of X-men timeline abuse? Cable. What a convoluted and stupid backstory. <br><br>I'm planning on revisiting AoA here pretty soon, you might want to if you're no longer burnt out. I will admit that it was the very first issue back to normal that finally broke the back of my X-men collecting, which had been going on since before Fall of the Mutants, so I guess I was x-fatigued as well.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 3:04 p.m. CST

    Maybe Austen

    by Joenathan

    Maybe.<br><br>Now, if you'd said Winnick...

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 3:29 p.m. CST

    Laserhead: Rayner

    by gooseud

    What Kyle should have done to Deathstroke was create a giant green piano and slam the lid shut on him, exclaiming "Hey Deathstroke, why don't you just.....FACE THE MUSIC!!!"

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 3:34 p.m. CST

    X-Men in the future

    by gooseud

    One of these days, Madrox or someone is going to go to the future....and find Scott Summers chillin on the beach with a Corona in his hand being like "Dude, Jamie, welcome to the future! It's fuckin AWESOME here!! Everyone loves us!! These red sunglasses get me more ass then a toilet seat!!" But alas no, instead we get story after story after story after story of mutant future persecution. How (yawwwwwwwwn) exciting. Wait, what? Mutants in internment camps?? Heavy handed social commentary disguised as an X-Men storyline? Surely you jest, sir!! I SAY THEE NAY!!

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 3:38 p.m. CST

    One last thing:

    by gooseud

    Does Nimrod realize his name is code for "Retard"? Like, when they invented Nimrod, how did they come up with that name? Was "Dumb-Shit" already taken? I'm picturing Gob Bluth from Arrested Development standing next to a 10 foot tall sheet being like "Gentlemen, we have reached the pinnacle of mutant hunting technology.....without further adieu, I give you.....ASS-CLOWN!!!!" (Yanks off sheet to reveal giant pink robot).

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 3:40 p.m. CST

    I knew what you meant, Laserhead...

    by SleazyG.

    ...just wanted to point out that Bruce Jones is at least as shitty a writer as Chuck Austen, but he's sucking on books NOW instead of half a decade or more ago.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 3:46 p.m. CST

    Nimrod

    by Joenathan

    is apparently a term for a Hunter originally. There's was this TV show about a small town in the upper pennisula of Michigan and their school mascot was the nimrod and their basketball team of six kids who had been playing together forever was going to state and it was called Nimrod Nation and I would watch, fascinated, thinking: "Why doesn't anyone mention the fact that they keep calling themselves Proud Nimrods? Don't they know?"

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 3:46 p.m. CST

    I don't know if the set out to tell a bad story

    by Fuzzyjefe

    but Jeph Loeb succeeded admirably in Ultimates 3. How do you take the characters/situations set up in vols 1 & 2 and do....THAT? It's like taking a filet mignon into the kitchen and serving me poop. With a side of suck.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 3:48 p.m. CST

    Kyle vs. Deathstroke

    by Joenathan

    He should have hit him with a giant green frying pan and said: "Give up, Deathstroke, you're... COOKED!"

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 3:52 p.m. CST

    GL vs Deathstroke

    by Fuzzyjefe

    Kyle whips up a giant green tennis racket, swats Slade, and exclaims triumphantly: "You got served!"

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 3:56 p.m. CST

    Kyle vs. Deathstroke

    by Mr.FTW

    No way, he should make a giant green B-Boy that does a head spin then tell him he just got served.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 4 p.m. CST

    Or a giant green ice cream cone

    by Fuzzyjefe

    "you just got soft-served!"

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 4:08 p.m. CST

    Nimrod

    by Continentalop

    Nimrod means "hunter" in ancient Hebrew. He was a Biblical Mesopotamian king mentioned in the Table of Nations and, while not stated in the Bible, is traditionally considered the creator of the Tower of Babel. He is a great grandson of Noah, and "a mighty one on the earth" and "a mighty hunter before the Lord." So the term Nimrod when vague or general is applied to the means of hunter, normally to a person.<p> The origins of "nimrod" meaning an idiot might come from Bugs Bunny. Bugs would often ironically call Elmer Fudd a "poor little nimrod." So, for the less literate children watching it is natural to assume the would interpret "nimrod" to be some kind of insult. <p> Anyone remembers the vampire Nimrod who fought Dracula in Dracula Lives?

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 4:15 p.m. CST

    Dystopia

    by Continentalop

    I can actually understand there appeal, especially to the X-Men universe. Almost all minority groups that have been oppressed have a natural suspicion and paranoia that their fears will be justified. Blacks, Jews, Hispanics, Gays, all of them have a fear that sometime in the future they will be oppressed again or that things will take a turn for the worse. Days of Future Past was just a comic book extension of that. <p> Plus, most young people usually have a bleaker look to the future, and also think they will inherit a world worse than what their parents had. <p> Personally though, I would love to see an optimistic future just once.Wouldn't it be nice if the future proved that Prof. X's quest was justified? I mean, if MLK somehow showed up nowadays, I think he would feel his sacrifices and toil were all worth it.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 4:34 p.m. CST

    ROFL Ancient Hebrew?

    by gooseud

    "I give you.....NIMROD ROTHSTEIN!!!" (Unveils giant pink robot with little yarmulkah on his head)

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 4:36 p.m. CST

    Nimrod

    by Joenathan

    Are you sure the root for "idiot" doesn't also come from the whole tower of babel debacle? Thats what I've always read/heard.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 4:38 p.m. CST

    "if MLK somehow showed up nowadays"

    by Joenathan

    "I think he would feel his sacrifices and toil were all worth it."<br><Br>Not according to that one episode of Boondocks...

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 4:42 p.m. CST

    Nimrod

    by Continentalop

    That might be the actual root (it was also used to mean "tyrant") but at any rate I think Bugs helped popularize the term.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 4:43 p.m. CST

    MLK on Boondocks

    by Continentalop

    Was pre-Obama.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 4:45 p.m. CST

    My victory over GL is now complete

    by gooseud

    Clearly, what was once one man's common sense crusade against the deus-ex-machina make-it-up-as-we-go-along lameness of Green Lantern's powers has now become a talkback mainstay. I win. Somewhere Messi is screaming "Its NOT a GIANT FRYING PAN, DAMMIT!! Its an expression of one man's indomitable willpower!!!" (Kyle creates a giant green grandfather clock and drops it on Deathstroke) "Hey Deathstroke, looks like its TIME for you to leave!!"

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 4:47 p.m. CST

    You got it wrong gooseud

    by Continentalop

    He is more like an Israeli jew, like Mossad and Krav Maga and Masada, not a neurotic American jew like Woody Allen. <p> Or maybe he is: "I think that this - that this entire mutant thing is just such a ridiculous thing. Uh, it reminds me of an old Joke that takes place at a Catskills mountain resort..."

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 4:55 p.m. CST

    I still think GL makes more sense...

    by Continentalop

    ...deus-ex-machina powers and all than Wolverine and his convoluted, ridiculous backstory.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 4:57 p.m. CST

    Why don't Green Lanterns

    by Fuzzyjefe

    make giant green lantern rings that could level a city with one blast? *rhetorical*

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 5:04 p.m. CST

    Who says they can't Fuzzyjefe?

    by Continentalop

    But in all seriousness even though they made a "bigger" ring, I still think you could argue it could on produce as much energy as the smaller ring could. It is the smaller ring that holds the charge from the Power Batteries. <p> Best use of a GL ring ever was in Ganthet's Tale by sci-fi writer Larry Niven (the man of "Man of Steel, Woman of Tissue" fame). In it Hal is told to fly away at the speed of light and fire a green laser at another ring wielder. Because he was moving so fast the blast was color shifted along the light spectrum, going from green to yellow. <p> That was just awesome.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 5:48 p.m. CST

    I totally forgot about that, C-lop

    by Ambush Bug

    I wonder if Johns is going to use that concept in the Spectrum War that look to be happening after Blackest Night.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 6 p.m. CST

    DRACULA ON THE MOON!

    by LaserPants

    Captain Britain just became Marvels best book. Its fucking great! So is Nova, Guardians of the Galaxy, War of Kings, Thor, Thunderbolts, Daredevil, Old Man Logan, and a couple of others. DC needs to get their shit together and fire editorial. The only books they have going now that are essential reads are Green Lantern and Green Lantern Corps. Everything else is pretty much shit. (Though I'm digging the New Krypton thingee.) Hopefully Johns will be able to repair the mess with Blackest Night.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 6:12 p.m. CST

    "Dracula on the Moon!"

    by Continentalop

    Is the phrase that sums up everything I like in comic books and the superhero genre. Just saying it makes me smile and feel all nice and warm. <p> "Dracula on the Moon!"

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 6:24 p.m. CST

    Dracula on the moon

    by Snookeroo

    I read a story in Famous Monsters once about Dracula hitching a ride to a space colony because there was no good blood left on earth.<br>He gets to this small planet and first night out finds a victim -- but just as he's about to attack the guy, the sun comes over the horizon and fries poor Drac. <br><br>Seems our favorite vampire forgot that night was much shorter on this new planet.<br><br>Great story -- wish I still had that issue.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 6:38 p.m. CST

    Nimrod Horowitz

    by gooseud

    "Dude, don't you know I dont hunt mutants on the Shabbat??"

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 6:44 p.m. CST

    ContinentalOP is right

    by gooseud

    Wolvie's origin is fuckin lame. And the reason that Niven guy had such a good idea about GL is because hes an outside writer who isnt constricted by 50 years of backstory, 90% lame as balls, he can just write the story he wants because he can always go back to what he was doing before. If they had THAT guy writing GL full time, maybe he wouldnt have been so goddamn lame all this time (current admittedly high quality of the last 3 or 4 years nonwithstanding). Its the same for Meltzer, Identity Crisis was one of the few things DC has published recently that DIDNT feel frozen in amber (or just generally as exciting as watching my grandparents screw).

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 6:51 p.m. CST

    damn it, goose!

    by Joenathan

    I was so going to use the Clock pun next...<br><br>Kyle wraps Deathsroke up in a pair of giant green shoelaces: "Looks like you're fit to be TIED, Deathstroke!"

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 6:51 p.m. CST

    Wolverine's history

    by Joenathan

    Isn't it all a memory cap?

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 7:15 p.m. CST

    Science/Realism in comics

    by Continentalop

    I am not a big fan of logical explanations for DC comic characters. Unlike Joenathan I don’t think there has to be an in-depth explanation of the limits and capabilities of GL’s rings. I can live with each writer coming in and establishing his own limits of what they rings can do or not do, depending on what types of stories they want to tell. <p> Having said that, one of my biggest joys is when somebody takes a DC character, with all of their ridiculous physics breaking powers, and uses real world science with them. I don’t care so much that someone’s powers are completely unrealistic, I just love it when do real scientific applications (such as Superman following radio waves or the Flash saying something that isn’t heard until after he knocks out the villain because he was was running faster than sound), or at least they acknowledge how their powers breaks the rules of physics. <p> One of my favorite moments that a comic book character admitted that his powers were impossible and he knew it was in an old issue of the Atom when Ray Palmer and a friend of his had both shrunk down, and were standing and talking on an atom. Suddenly the friend realized something and said, “Hey, if we are now smaller than an oxygen molecule, how is it we can breath and talk?” <p> Ray Palmer replied, “I don’t know.” At least he was honest about it.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 7:21 p.m. CST

    I Feel The Same Way, Continentalop

    by LaserPants

    Did you read the last ish? Its effin' great. The meeting with Dr. Doom and Dracula on the moon; the fact that Doom won't refer to him as a Count; the plan to create a Vampire Nation on Earth; the blood canons that shoot vampires toward the Earth?! It's great, and crazy, and loopy, and campy, but not over-the-top campy, AND it has great characters. (All the stuff with Blade and Spitfire is especially great. I love where that relationship is going and how its been developing.) Really, really great book. I've liked this whole relaunch so far, but now? I friggin' LOVE it. I really hope it keeps going like this. <br><br>Btw, new Thor was friggin' great too; and its seems like Thor and the Asgardians are going to play some role in this whole Vampire Nation thing thats brewing. At least thats my prediction given that Doom has offered the Asgardians room to park Asgard in Latveria.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 7:25 p.m. CST

    Wolverine's History

    by Continentalop

    I sure hope it is a memory cap, because it is one of the most bloated, idiotic things out there. He is Highlander with bone claws (bone fucking claws!). <p> Question: I cut down my comic reading tremendously through most of the 90s, and pretty much stopped reading all things X-Men. My question is to those in the know when was the term "Weapon X" first applied? Barry-Windsor Smith's comic from 1991 was called "Weapon X" I know, but wasn't the experiment called Experiment X? I think Larry Hama came up with the Weapon X project in the early 90's, but I am not sure. <p> The reason I ask is why would Wolverine be called Weapon X when he first appeared and fought the Hulk he if had no memory and no longer had a connection to the Weapon X program. Was it a repressed memory; was members of Weapon X working with Department H; or was this just a fucking coincidence? Has this ever been explained. <p> I got to lie down. Whenever I think of Wolverine's origin I get a big headache.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 7:30 p.m. CST

    Captain Britain rocks!

    by Continentalop

    I loved how Dracula is referred to as "the greatest general of his generation." And I love the interaction between Doom and Dracula. <p> What I especially love is that they are treating Dracula as an A-list villain, not some joke because he is based on a character from another medium. I read an interview wit Paul Cornell and he was talking about how he wants to put Dracula on the map as one of the big villains in Marvel, and how one of his motivations is that the members of the Dark Illuminati are not treating him with the respect he believes he deserves.

  • Feb. 19, 2009, 8:20 p.m. CST

    I dont demand realism in comics

    by gooseud

    although its fun as hell to attempt to apply it. I merely demand logic and common sense within the context of the universe that has been created. Thats why Civil War was such a great idea, although the execution sucked. Of course the govt would have attempted that, it makes perfect sense. Its the same reason I had no problem with Dr. Light's actions in Identity Crisis. I mean, if there were villains out there with powers, what do you think they would do? Rob banks? No, 50-60% of them would do exactly what Light did. ITs always been the elephant in the room, that villains have never actually done anything a real villain would actually do.

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 6:37 a.m. CST

    Thor and Captain Britain.....

    by BangoSkank

    Damn.... Captain Britain and Thor have been getting a ton of love around here lately. <p> I read the first few issues of Thor, and it just didn't do anything for me... But, I'm sort of over JMS, so I may not have been approaching it with an open mind. Maybe I'll give it another whirl in collected form. <p> Same goes for Captain Britain.... I felt burned a couple of times by different iterations of Excalibur.... So took a pass on this one, but Dracula on the Moon? That's pure gold. And I love the idea of Dracula become a force to be reckoned with in the MU. <p> It's tough. At $3.99, I'll be taking even fewer chances on new series'.

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 8:27 a.m. CST

    Continentalop

    by Joenathan

    "Unlike Joenathan I don’t think there has to be an in-depth explanation of the limits and capabilities of GL’s rings."<br><br>Thats not what I was saying. I was asking if DC had ever "comic book sciened" an explanation as to WHY the constructs were nessecary. Was that story ever told?

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 8:35 a.m. CST

    "why would Wolverine be called Weapon X when he first appeared?"

    by Joenathan

    Because Wolverine's history is a bloated, convulted, ret-conned mess?

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 8:37 a.m. CST

    I fizzled on Captain Brittain

    by Joenathan

    and honestly, the idea of Dracula on the moon is funny and cool in a kitchy kind of way, but hearing that they're trying to make him a real threat/villian has definitely grabbed my interest. <br><br>I will check this out.

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 8:40 a.m. CST

    I don't buy Thor because of JMS

    by Joenathan

    You broke my heart too many times, JMS! I ain't your Rhianna!

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 8:43 a.m. CST

    Joenathan

    by Continentalop

    I didn't mean to misrepresent you. I meant to say you were asking for a Marvel comics-like explanation for his powers (ala the Marvel Handbooks) and I was trying to say that the Marvel style doesn't work for DC characters, and vice versa. DC works best not being so tied to continuity, and Marvel works best when it has shared universe with continuity. <p> That is why I don't think you need a comic book science scene with GL - it works better if you have a general guideline what it can do and let each writing staff explore it. Unlike Marvel, where I want to know where each character ranks on the strength chart (is Hercules stronger than Thor? And how many tons can they lift?).

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 8:46 a.m. CST

    Well, using Niven's idea.....

    by Fuzzyjefe

    wouldn't it be a cool idea for there to be a splinter group of Lanterns that use differently cut prisms to change their ring energy to different colors? I don't know much about the Lanterns, I'll freely admit, but don't different colors have different apps? Why limit to just one, when you could theoretically bend the energy to any other?

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 9:15 a.m. CST

    Fuzz

    by Fygar

    The different colors all basically do the same thing, they just represent different emotional states. Green is will, yellow is fear, red is rage, blue is hope, etc. They can all shoot beams and make constructs. It is like power plants, some run on water, some wind, some solar, but they all produce electricity.

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 9:32 a.m. CST

    Ah

    by Joenathan

    I see, said the blind man...<br><Br>I was totally screwed by adult stuff last night(the non porn kind) and was unable to make the LCS. <Br><br>Total. Bummer. Dude.

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 10:23 a.m. CST

    Buzz Maverik's Original Superhero Film

    by Buzz Maverik

    Because of my extensive background in superhero comics (I used to read them!), I've been hired to write and direct what the producers believe will be an innovative look at superheroes. It's called SECURITY GUARDS. The Security Guards are kinky, dysfunctional superheroes for a troubled time I like to call "today". There's Inkblot, who is messed up emotionally. He'll be played by Jimmy Baio, best known as Ronzoni in THE BAD NEWS BEARS IN BREAKING TRAINING. We've got the Satin Slip, who has parental issues. Professor Los Alamos, who doesn't care about people. Limp Bird, who is trying to invent the Viagra ray. Ozzyosbournus, SPOILER ALERT, who is behind the whole thing. His real identity is Adrian Gernier, who will play him in the movie. Finally, the linchpin of the whole story, Dead Ed.<p>Who says you can't come up with anything new?

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 10:29 a.m. CST

    To Be Pefectly Geek, Weapon X...

    by Buzz Maverik

    ...was what Wolverine was called when he first appeared in the Hulk back when I was in the third grade. We hated Wolverine, btw. Always hated it when they'd send in a tiny dude in a costume like the Hulk wouldn't use him for toilet paper. Weapon X may have been mentioned in Giant Size X-MEN # 1, I can't tell ya because I've killed a lot of brain cells since then. And I know that James McDonald Hudson called him Weapon X when he first attacked the X-Men. Never liked the Weapon X concept personally, and if I'd got the X-MEN directing job instead of Singer, the Hellfire Club would have had a lot more to do with Wolvie's origin.

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 11:44 a.m. CST

    My thoughts on Final Crisis

    by SpacePhil

    Well, here I'll have to admit you guys were right about Final Crisis being a mess. That said, I don't know if the blame necessarily belongs to Morrison. As someone said, there were a ton of good ideas in Final Crisis - the problem is, it never felt like he had the time or the pages to really explore any of them in depth. Maybe that would've happened, if the other DC books had gotten involved...? But yeah, anyway - I have to wonder how much of this was Morrison's fault as writer, and how much of it was DC leaving him and the book out to dry.

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 12:04 p.m. CST

    Did DC leave him out to dry

    by Joenathan

    or did he keep all his cards close to the vest and not let anyone else play?

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 12:45 p.m. CST

    Or Does DCs Editorial Department Completely Suck?

    by LaserPants

    Didio (I think thats his name) needs to be fired ASAP.

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 3:25 p.m. CST

    Thor

    by Bluejack

    It was time for Thor to get involved in Midgard. I'm glad to see he will start interacting with the Avengers etc.

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 3:25 p.m. CST

    No, Buzz Maverik

    by Continentalop

    I know that was Wolverine's code name in his first appearance against the Hulk. I am just wondering how did his code name for Department H happen to be the same one for the project that gave him his claws? He was a Canadian superhero after he got the adamantium, so how is it the his superhero code name and the code name for him getting adamantium is the same? <p> Maybe one of the moderators or reviewers knows.

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 3:27 p.m. CST

    By the way...

    by Continentalop

    node 39967 went down. RIP BALEBACK.

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 3:32 p.m. CST

    The Sentry

    by Bluejack

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 3:33 p.m. CST

    The Sentry

    by Bluejack

    Needs to go back out of Marvel continuity. His character sucks giant donkey balls. In other news, Spider-Man as written in the Avengers is still a whiney bitch.

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 3:50 p.m. CST

    hey

    by Joenathan

    Does anyone remember a PC game from the mid 90s that was your basic Space marine vs. alien turn based, hex strategy game and had a multiplayer vs. mode where you could buy and build your own space marine squad and then you and the rival squads ran around this overhead view map, hunting each other or trying to take over a certain spot. There were LAser Troopers that could freeze someone and Jump Troopers with jet packs and Snipers and Berserker Troopers. They moved and fought based on a point system and you could place them on sentry duty so that if an enemy crossed their path they'd automatically open fire.<br><br>Sound familiar? Anyone? Anyone?<br><br>It might have been called Vaccine or Vaccination or Valedation or something like that...

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 4:05 p.m. CST

    Please, Contientalop...

    by Buzz Maverik

    ...call me Buzz. Buzz Maverik is so Charlie Brown. Why did they always call him by both names? It was never "Hi, Linus Van Pelt" or "That crazy Snoopy Beagle."<p>You gotta loosen up, man! Try the wood grain alcohol.

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 4:45 p.m. CST

    JMS and Thor

    by gooseud

    I've been as burned by the next guy by JMS. All I can say is, Thor taken in and of itself has been awesome. If you only read the first 3, your missing out (Iron Fist was kind of the same way). It gets freakin awesome after those first 3 intro issues. Without spoiling anything, the "funeral" issue (those who have read it know what I'm talking about) was one of the best issues of any comic I've read this year.

  • Feb. 20, 2009, 10:32 p.m. CST

    I'm sorry Buzz, it is just that...

    by Continentalop

    ...we've never been properly introduced. <p> I guess I am still a little souther belle.

  • March 27, 2009, 11:59 a.m. CST

    Who's the Real Victim?

    by Septimus03

    I found this article on spunkybean.com. It's called, Rihanna and Chris Brown: Who's the Real Victim?: http://www.spunkybean.com/commentary/919-op-ed-rihanna-and-chris-brown-whos-the-real-victim