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#48 4/8/09 #7



Writer: Jason Aaron Artist: Ron Garney Publisher: Marvel Comics Reviewed by Humphrey Lee

Typically I'm of the opinion that we need more WOLVERINE books like we need more Corporate News Networks, or the Octomom needs more babies for her inevitable army. Really, just insert anything you're tired of hearing the media and public as a whole repeat and drone on and on and on about and you get my drift. But, like all things, there's always an exception. In this case the exception is the creative team of Jason "Scalped" Aaron and Ron "I've drawn just about every damn thing" Garney. Apart they've always turned in the goods - Aaron's SCALPED is one of the best books on the market today and Garney has turned in pencils on some damn classic runs of comics - and together they've already done a Wolvie arc that was overall pretty great and showed they were worthy of doing even more of it together. And now that they've gotten their chance again, I'm happy to say that something that I'd normally roll my eyes at its superfluous-ness turned out to be a pretty decent setup for hopefully even better things to come.
The main thing that comes through in this issue, and the handful of Wolvie stories we've seen from Aaron so far, is that he does seem to understand the essence and the voice of the character. The key to Wolverine, as far as I've always been concerned, is that he needs to be treated like Clint Eastwood as the Man With No Name from those famous Sergio Leone flicks way back when. He needs to be gruff and a little distant, but always willing to step in when necessary. The solemn figure with the grumpy little heart of gold. And Mr. Aaron does get this it seems, with a nice little altercation on the subway to prove this to us. The only complaint I would have about his take on the character is that when he's in his own head it's almost a little too cliche, like with the last dialogue: "A whole lot of killin' that needs to be done, that's what the hell I'm looking at." Yeah, he kills a lot of guys, that's cool and we get it. That aspect could be a lot stronger, but really, we all know we're here to see said killing, so it's not really something worth paying that much mind to.
As for the goings-on of the book itself, again, it's not bad setup. There's a good bit of the old ultra-violence to start and set up the mystery of just what exactly it is that the old Canucklehead is going to be going up against. As you could probably figure thanks to the subtitle of this series there's some shenanigans from the old Weapon X program rearing their head, this time apparently in the form of a company known as Blackguard, as Logan's old combat buddy Maverick - a character that's always squeezed a "hell yeah" out of me whenever shows up - meets up to drop off some intel about them. And that's how we get to a last page with an empty, bloodied lab, lots of experimental vats, and Wolvie spouting the killing line I quoted last paragraph before a "Next Issue" spread showing a lots of green, glowing claws reminiscent of our lead's which promises us just what he said, killing and lots of it. Hopefully there's more to this Blackguard than just what Maverick said - it being a military contractor that bought out the Weapon Plus program's research - that just seems too easy to me, but again, as long as Aaron and company keep the bloodshed where it needs to be, and reign in the machismo in the voice overs, I imagine I'll be contented.
Going over to the other half of the creative crew that I so highly value, Ron Garney, like he has been for lord knows how long, continues to bring the goods on art chores. Except for a couple minor gaffs here and there almost all the lines in this are very crisp and the images very detailed, and there's lots of great shading at work too. Tons of panels fill up the pages too, but nothing ever feels cramped. And like I've come to expect from him, the action (what taste of it we got this issue anyways) flowed fantastically, especially since most of it was stuff that happened without the doers of it in the panels of themselves. Everything was very much "from the shadows" and it was executed with the utmost skill. Even if this run just happens to be more of the furry one letting the crimson flow, it'll be well worth it just to see Garney's rendition of it all.
Since it was inevitable we'd be getting inundated with books about the clawed one on the eve of his own major motion picture release (y'know, for those of you more "honorable" chaps who haven't downloaded it yet), at the least I respect their not throwing just anyone on this title knowing that, c'mon, this thing was going to sell at least 80K no matter who they put on it. Hopefully the next issue will speed things up a little more, and maybe we'll get some more character interaction going on, whether it'll be from other former Weapon X guys, or I assume the reporter babe that we saw Aaron to introduce on the train scene, just something to mix things up a bit. And again, it'd be nice if we got a little more depth in our story besides just having new baddies to unleash his fury on, but that'd just be a bonus since I know what I'm really here for. Like an eleventh nugget in a ten pack, if you will. But with the majority of Wolvie books that look to be coming out being material that is probably just going to be cobbled together by whatever coffee fetcher around the Marvel offices has the time to slap a script together, and with Millar's surprisingly stellar Old Man Logan arc about to come to an end, it's nice to know that there will be one book you can come to to get unfiltered mayhem and badassedness out of the character, and hopefully for a lengthy stay at that.
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.


Story by: Garth Ennis Art by: Gary Erskine Published by: Dynamite Entertainment Reviewed by: Baytor

I, like most of my American brethren, do not know a lot about Dan Dare. Since getting back into comics in the early 90s, I’ve heard the odd bit about him, and a few years ago I read the rather awful Dan Dare strips they published in 2000AD, but of his glory years, I know absolutely nothing.
Enter Garth Ennis, who is among my favorite comic writers…well, at least when he’s not taking the piss and turning in a half-formed joke as a plot. If he writes it, I will buy it, and most of the time I have an enjoyable time. And every so often, he writes a comic that reminds me why he’s one of my favorite writers.
This is one of those books.
He doesn’t write a lot of stories about idealistic heroes. Most of his heroes are true and brave, but they’ve been beaten down by the cynical world they inhabit. Dan Dare is not that sort of hero. True, he lives in a cynical world, where Britain survived a nuclear war between the U.S. and China, abandoned its ideals, and embarked on another reign as Colonial Masters Of All They Survey, and Dan Dare turned his back on a society he could only despise, but he never stopped believing and he inspires the best in almost everyone he comes in contact with.
Long ago, Dare brought the tyrannical rule of the Mekon to an end. Defeated, he escaped with the remnants of his followers, and he has now returned with a vast armada and a weapon that makes his defeat nearly unthinkable. Despite Dare’s abhorrence of everything Britain has become, he doesn’t pause for a second in answering the call of King & Country.
What follows is a story that brings to bear everything Ennis has learned writing war comics the last two decades. This is every courageous last stand in military history: every naval battle, every pitched dog-fight, every victory against overwhelming odds. This is about one man who, through sheer force of personality and nerve, stares down the forces of evil and wins. Ennis’ ever-present sense of humor is wisely restrained in the book, consisting mostly of nasty little surprises that happen to our villains and snappy banter, all of which are in service of a rousing military adventure story.
A military adventure that is built upon the military aesthetic of the Post-War Era when Dan Dare was created. Spaceships look like destroyers of old, with naval style gun turrets. Fighters look like Spitfighters, and when Dare gives the order to “fix bayonets”, he’s not speaking metaphorically. There aren’t a lot of artists that can pull of this sort of book (especially when you factor in Ennis’ love of conversation, which requires a mastery of facial expression), but Gary Erskine manages to bring the chaos of massive naval/aircraft battles into a coherent visual narrative.
While reading it, it reminded me of another British science-fiction hero, Doctor Who; who, like Dan Dare, was co-opted into darker, more cynical stories. And Dare, like The Doctor, has been steered from this dark path to once more become the shining beacon of hope for a universe in dire need of something more than ironic posturing.
It’s tempting to call this story Dan Dare’s DARK KNIGHT RETURNS or “Whatever Happened To The Man Of Tomorrow”, but Dan Dare isn't operatic enough to gain the status of those stories. Still, there is a sense that this is the swan song of a great hero, who comes out of retirement to save a dramatically changed world from his greatest foe. And like those stories, many of his companions will not survive the journey. This is certainly a fitting ending for a hero, but, more than that; it’s the re-birth of hope.


Writer/artist: Tony Daniel Publisher: DC Comics Reviewer: Optimous Douche

While short on surprises, this second installment of Bat succession picked up from the adrenaline infused first issue and kicked it up to 11. Allow me to apologize now, but to deliver this review I have to unmask the gun-toting hooded Batman from issue 1.
Most notably this issue veers from the inaugural chapter by switching narration from Robin III, Tim Drake, to…wait for it…Robin II, Jason Todd. A special kudos to whoever decided to place the perpetual brat’s dialogue in black boxes with red text, it definitely helped old guys like me not see him as a kid, but rather a raging maniac. For our younger readers, Jason Todd is probably the most hated character to ever grace the pages of comic books. So much so, that for a few non-chafing days in the 1980’s we all stopped calling 900 number porn lines so we could flood the DC 900 numbers that decided Jason’s fate against the Joker’s crowbar. Unanimously we all decided that the street urchin Robin was destined for a pine box, while also showing the big houses that the next generation of comic readers would demand a comic universe that reflected the evils of the world along with the good. You can thank us later.
I was one of those kids that voted to “off” Jason, mainly because he was a perpetual whiner. You could only tolerate so many pages of, “Weeehhh, I’m from the streets, the streets are harsh, and that makes me harsh, weeehhh.” I’m glad I helped kill him; without his death we never would have this older, surlier version seething with his own distorted mantra of how to defend Gotham by saying, “justice is a dish best served with bullets and fatalities.” This young man is pissed not only at Bruce Wayne, but also at the Robins he could never live up to--the original, Dick Grayson, and his shining successor, Tim Drake. This is one of the first books where I saw true differentiation in character between the three Robins. Where Jason is clearly in place to usurp the image of the Bat by becoming the marred side of the coin of justice, Tim is on steadfast mission to preserve Bruce’s legacy in amber, almost like Dick tried to do during the Bane days. Dick is on a different spiritual journey, refusing to never again try to become Bruce, but still recognizing Gotham’s need for the Batman that Bruce was. It’s interesting that The Flash was so easily replaceable, where no one it seems can wrest the cowl from Bruce’s specter.
Interspersed between the Robin sagas the elite of Gotham’s underbelly continue to get manipulated by the Black Mask into sounding the drums of war. Daniel delivers some truly fantastic full blown spreads of Gotham igniting into utter bedlam. I truly felt as though I was on a roller coaster ride for every page, feeling the rising anticipation as I was pulled into the intimate conversational moments, and then the visceral thrill of hurtling towards disaster and action the next. I really don’t know what else you could ask from a comic that’s been around for over half of a century.
As we trip lazily through limbo in the main Batman titles, I truly applaud Daniel for bringing a palpable sense of reality, danger and action back to the Caped Crusader, even if the real Caped Crusader is nowhere to be found.
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."


Writer: Andy Diggle Artist: Tom Raney Publisher: Marvel Comics Reviewer: Liam “The Kid”

Note: ‘The Kid’ is 8 years old and has been doing reviews on his own site since August of 2008.
In the regular comics the Green Goblin (Norman Osborn) saved everyone from the Skrulls by killing the Skrull Queen and then he got rewarded by everyone for being a hero. The good guys know that Osborn is really the crazy murderer the Green Goblin but other people think he’s either a nice guy or that he’s just not so bad anymore. Osborn got put in charge of the Avengers and that made regular superheroes like Captain America and Spider-Man and Luke Cage really mad. Those guys are still Avengers but they’re hiding out and doing things undercover just to get Osborn mad. Osborn made up a team of his own Avengers with all of these bad guys that are pretending to be superheroes. Venom is pretending to be black suit Spider-Man. Wolverine’s son is pretending to be Wolverine. Osborn is pretending to be an Iron Man and Bullseye is pretending to be Hawkeye.
I really like that all of the bad guys are pretending to be super heroes for Norman Osborn. Hawkeye is a cool hero because he has a really great looking costume and I like that he is a sharpshooter with bows and arrows. I can shoot a bow and arrow really well, too, but not as good as Hawkeye. And Bullseye is a really tough bad guy who has the best aim in the world and kills people with pens and playing cards and anything else he can throw.
Bullseye is a great shot and he can take out anyone that he’s aiming for.
The book starts off with a lot of action with Osborn’s Avengers trying to stop a big huge Hulkbuster robot that is tearing New York City apart. I like how the big robot was in town destroying everything and Bullseye went after it with Wolverine’s son who used his claws to scratch his way up the robot’s leg. A really cool part was when Bullseye opened up the hatch where the robot’s driver was sitting and said the good news is that Hawkeye doesn’t kill people but the bad news is that he wasn’t Hawkeye. The guy tried to escape and he got killed by the exploding arrow and the robot fell down and destroyed the bus with a bunch of people on it.
I think it would be pretty obvious to everyone that he really isn’t Hawkeye since he goes around in the whole book killing people but maybe no one sees him. There is a reporter who thinks that something is wrong and it looks like he’s guessing that Hawkeye is really Bullseye but Osborn gets them apart so the reporter can’t figure it out. I like how Osborn and Bullseye were talking in his office and Osborn was mad because he is starting to think that people really like him and if Bullseye starts killing people then all of his plans are going to be ruined.
The best part of the book was the battle in the end where Bullseye rescued the girl from all of the thugs. I like that he is so cocky after saving her and makes a mistake and lets her know who he really is by accident and then has to kill her with a pen. It was funny how he took care of the other guy, too. It looks like he’s going to get busted but I think that the people that spot him are just going to get killed, too.
There was a lot of action in the book and all of the parts where Bullseye was dressed as Hawkeye were really good. I like the way the artist draws Hawkeye with a crazy looking smile a lot because he doesn’t care that he’s breaking all the rules and killing people. He’s just a really bad guy even more than Osborn who knows that Bullseye has to control himself. The part where he drew the giant robot and all of Osborn’s Avengers was good too, and I like how all the characters were attacking the robot at once. It’s strange that there is a comic where the bad guy is the main person and he’s acting like a hero but I like that because it’s different.
My Rating: 9.5 out of 10


Story & Art: Larry Marder Publisher: Dark Horse Comics/Dark Horse Originals Reviewer: Ambush Bug

Upon first glance, I could see how some would dismiss LARRY MARDER'S BEANWORLD as nonsense: just a bunch of half-rendered shapes spouting non sequiturs threaded together solely by the fact that they all occur on the same page and are bound into a thick hardcover volume. But after reading a few chapters of this collection of stories, I realized that there is something deeper, something more meaningful going on here.
Larry Marder is not vomiting forth gibberish with his oddly shaped characters and fantastically one-dimensional landscapes (it's almost as if you're looking at these stories unfold under a microscope most of the time). This shit actually makes sense to Mr. Marder and after reading a few pages, dammit if it didn't start making sense to me too. Marder has fleshed out an entire world with rules and guidelines; with weird little creatures that have roles to play, jobs to do, and responsibilities that if not followed through with may mean the destruction of Beanworld itself.
Marder's whimsical bean-shaped creatures populate the upper surface region of Beanworld and feed on something called "chow". Below this surface lay layers of "slats", "hoops", "twinks", and "chips", all products used in some way by the population of Beanworld in one way or another. Below those surfaces are the Hoi-Polloi Ring Herd--creatures who are addicted to gambling and use chow as currency. Often, the beans invade the Hoi-Polloi in search of food, stealing their chow, but not before leaving a sprout butt for the Hoi-Polloi to covet and care for. Through the love of the Hoi-Polloi, the sprout-butt soon becomes more chow for the Hoi-Polloi to gamble with. If I still have your attention after that lengthy explanation of the circle of life on Beanworld, then you may enjoy this reading experience as much as I did. And I guarantee Marder pieces all of the aspects of this intricate world together with a narrative that is both entertaining and leaves you salivating for more.
So is Beanworld a metaphor for the way the human body works? Is it about how an ecosystem sustains life? Does it represent a perfect utopia that supports and sustains itself with a give and take system? Is it a political/economic statement? Who the hell knows? It could be any of these or none at all. The concept is so abstract that meaning after meaning could be assigned to it. Then again, it could be an elaborate world crafted from the off-kilter brainpan of a skewed genius with no association to the real world whatsoever. If nothing else, this hardcover collection is something I could not put down. BEANWORLD is one of those concepts that defy classification, revels in that fact, and makes that revelry contagious for the reader.
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.


Writer: Joe Hill Artist: Gabriel Rodriguez Published by: IDW Publishing Reviewed by: BottleImp

LOCKE & KEY was one of those titles that I never noticed on the stands when the first series, “Welcome to Lovecraft,” was released…which is kind of bizarre for me, since you could slap the name “Lovecraft” on just about anything and I’d at least pick it up and glance at it. Hell, if there were a line of Cthulhu brand tampons out there I’d probably buy a pack for my girlfriend—“But honey, he DID live in a sunken city, and they say they’re super absorbent.” But I digress…my point is, I ended up reading the first volume of LOCKE & KEY in trade form rather than month by month, and really enjoying it. So when this volume of the series started showing up at the comic shop, I decided to read the comics rather than wait for the inevitable trade. And so far, this story arc (though it’s really a continuation of the first storyline rather than a stand-alone) measures up well against its predecessor.
I’m really digging the whole magical, multigenerational mystery that Joe Hill is laying out for the readers; Hill is also smart enough to keep the mystery mysterious—I know that doesn’t seem like it should be hard to do, but it’s amazing how many mystery novels I’ve read that blow their sense of suspense by revealing too much far too soon. We still have no idea how the Locke childrens’ father is connected with the Keyhouse, or who the creature that escaped from the well in the last series and is now masquerading as a high school student really is, or why he/she is looking for a special key. LOCK & KEY reminds me a lot of Neil Gaiman’s SANDMAN, except the pretentiousness of Gaiman’s writing and his focus on society’s subcultures has been replaced with a world and characters much closer to the world we inhabit—which makes the mystery of the keys and the Well Creature that much more disturbing.
(And just to pre-empt anyone who might cry “Foul!” at my remarks about SANDMAN, I love the series, but you gotta admit, there’s a lot of text in there that tends to be overly verbose, if you know what I mean.)
Gabriel Rodriguez provides the perfect visual complement to Hill’s writing—I honestly can’t imagine anyone else’s artwork melding so well with the dual aspects of down-to-earth, kids-next-door world and ancient mysteries of the world of the Keys. His blend of the realistic and the cartoonish, especially in the different facial features and expressions, makes this series a pleasure to look at as well as read. I only have one small problem with this comic, and this issue in particular…
As I said, I discovered the first series of LOCKE & KEY in trade format, so I had the instant gratification of being able to read the entire story arc with no waiting in between chapters. But reading this comic chapter by chapter, I’ve noticed that there isn’t as much enjoyment of each individual issue. I understand that the nature of the mystery story means that the plot details need to emerge slowly as to not give too much away to the reader early on, but this deliberate slowness of pacing just doesn’t work as well when each chapter of the story is read a month apart from the next. I actually had a similar problem with Marvel’s NEW UNIVERSAL (though I ended up solving that by not buying that title anymore… no great loss). Another factor in this collection vs. installment argument is cost—seeing as how each issue of the comic costs $3.99, waiting for the entire series to be collected in trade form doesn’t end up costing you any more money than if you buy issue-by-issue…in fact, depending on the format, the trade could conceivably cost you less money. You’d be coming late to the party, as it were, but you’d get that instant gratification that feels oh so good. I’d be curious to know where the readers of this column stand on the trade vs. monthly debate.
But it’s a moot point for me, since I’m well into this series and loving it (even with slower issues like this one). Maybe I’ll hold off on reading ahead until I’ve got the next two or three issues on hand, so I can get that rush of gratification. In any case, if you like a good mystery and haven’t yet read LOCKE & KEY, go check out the first collection, and then decide whether or not you have the patience to wait for more of this great series.
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.


Writer: Damon Lindelof Artist: Leinil Francis Yu Publisher: Marvel Comics Reviewer: William

This title is really starting to test my patience. What I mean is that the name of this title is “Ultimate Wolverine vs. Hulk”, but by this 4th issue you sure could’ve fooled me when it comes to getting to see an actual fight. Like many of the pay-per-view boxing matches that last only 2 or 3 rounds, I’m seriously get ripped off here. Here’s what I mean:
The title references a fight between Ultimate Wolverine and Hulk. The front cover of the first issue showcases an amazing image, Hulk ripping Wolverine in half (apparently Adamantium is no longer indestructible here). In fact, every front cover thus far showcases the two of them tussling somehow. The first issue even shows the aftereffects of the fight as Wolverine limps his legless way up a mountain towards his lower half. In other words there’s a whole lot of build-up leading to this iconic clashing, and what’s there been so far to actually showcase this event? Just a few pages in issue three where the action is so fast and cut, it’s the equivalent of any of those action shots from the Bourne movies.
That’s right, it’s been four issues now and there’s only been about 4 to 5 pages of the actual fight. Unbelievable. I went into this title expecting a wall-to-wall action fest, salivating at the fact that with 6 issues it’ll be so epic to see such a long fight between the two. Instead I’ve been treated to issue after issue where there’s either talk before the fight between Wolverine and Hulk, talk after the fight between the two of them, talk amongst supporting characters such as Nick Fury and Betty Ross about the upcoming clash, talk amongst supporting characters about those other supporting characters, and you guess it, more talk amongst everybody involved. I thought the title was “ULTIMATE WOLVERINE VS HULK”, not “Let’s talk about every freaking angle leading up to and after the fight”. It’s as if the comic were on a special effects budget, where the more action shown equals a larger cost for Marvel, so they in turn told the writer and artist to limit the fighting to as little as possible and instead focus on the “talking”. To me this is the equivalent of the movie CLOVERFIELD.
Look I’m not just craving for mindless action here ala Image from the 90‘s. I enjoy an interesting dialogue between characters as much as any other comic book fan. I enjoy reading the WATCHMEN TPB just the same as reading the latest issues of the PUNISHER. But what I don’t like is that this title has been developing so much inane build-up, and covering so many different angles of the same scenes, it’s seriously making me think that Marvel simply stretched a two-part story into six parts in order to milk the most out of us. It’s as if they realized that their fight was really only going to be an issue’s worth of stuff but still wanted more.
To me the main blame on this lies with the writer, Damon Lindelof. He’s the guy writing this stretched-out mess, he’s the one who should explain why there’s been so few pages actually dealing with the fight. And I’ve read up on the history of this title and it seems that it was in development since late 2006, only there was such a delay from the team that they didn’t have a chance to publish it until today. Three years of waiting, for THIS? Wow. The one credit of this title though goes to the outstanding artwork from Leinil Francis Yu. Give that man a trophy please, because his art is simply phenomenal. His people are so great looking, so real and detailed and the facial expressions so perfect, he should seriously just be given a trophy from somewhere, anywhere. And his women, my goodness I’ve never seen Betty Ross look so good. After watching her I can understand why Bruce wouldn’t be able to get her out of his mind.
In any case, like a sucker I’ll purchase the last two issues to see if everything finally panned out nicely. Who knows, I may even be surprised by getting to see the actual fight in all of its glory.


Writers: Marc Sumerak and Roger Langridge Artists: Sanford Greene and Sonny Liew Publisher: Marvel Comics Reviewer: Liam “The Kid”

Note: ‘The Kid’ is 8 years old and has been doing reviews on his own site since August of 2008.
There are a lot of Spider-Man comics that come out and a lot of them that I read. The Marvel Adventure comic is different because it’s supposed to be more for kids so they can do stories that are a little bit goofier than would be in the regular Spider-Man comics. It’s not better or worse that Amazing Spider-Man or Ultimate Spider-Man, just different. And usually the art in Marvel Adventures is more like a cartoon than the real looking art in other books. There are a lot of comic books that are supposed to be for kids but they’re either boring or way too silly all of the time. Tiny Titans and Marvel Adventures are for kids but they’re fun too and hardly ever boring or dumb. I like the new comics coming out like MUPPET SHOW and INCREDIBLES, too.
This book was good because it had all of Spider-Man’s enemies getting together to team up and fight him. Norman Osborn visits a jail and everyone thinks that he’s going to help fix the jail and make it stronger but instead he puts on his Green Goblin costume and frees all of the other prisoners. It was pretty weird that all of the bad guys were allowed to wear their costumes in jail under their prison clothes. They probably could have just busted themselves out.
Osborn gets Electro, Hydro Man, Doctor Octopus, Rhino and the Scorpion out and tells them that he’s going to be the boss now and that makes Doctor Octopus mad because he used to be the boss of the bad guy team. All the bad guys keep arguing and they are too busy fighting themselves to be able to beat Spider-Man. I really liked the fights in the book. It was cool that Spider-Man was going up against six of his bad guys and you get to see all of them using their powers to try and kill Spider-Man and he’s just beating them up instead. He came up with some really funny ways to try and beat the six of them and I like how he wasn’t afraid that he had to fight them all by himself.
There were a few funny parts in the comic, too. I like when Peter Parker goes to a restaurant where everyone dressed like super heroes and then this big fat waiter in a Spider-Man costume gets mad when the real Spider-Man shows up because he thinks he’s stealing his job. I like when he sneaks up on Electro and knocks him out, too. The way he did it, just saying ‘hi’ was funny.
I wish the big battle between the six bad guys and Spider-Man was longer. I like that there were some bad guys in this book that haven’t been in the other Spider-Man comics and would have liked to see them do more stuff. Spider-Man is a good super hero but I think he beat them all up way too fast. I liked the art in the book except for how they made Peter Parker have a Mohawk. I don’t like his hair that way. I did like the short story in the back of the comic. It’s a rhyming story so it is really fast to read and the art is done in a crazy way that’s kind of neat. I like how Spider-Man was drawn bendy and stuff and there were a lot of things going on in the pictures. It was good that they used some other bad guys that I haven’t seen in the comics too like the Vulture, Mysterio and Kraven. The best part was when Spider-Man threw a bunch of eggs at the Scorpion and smashed them on his face. I wouldn’t read a lot of comics like that but in a short story it was really cool.
My Rating: 9 out of 10


By Shirow Miwa Released by Viz Media Reviewer: Scott Green

While DOGS isn't necessarily a manga series that I was looking forward to, it has been on my radar for a while. Buried on my desk, I have a Power PC Mac Mini with its desktop image set to DOGS' "Blade Maiden" crouching down, flowing coat billowing dramatically behind her, hand hovering over the hilt of her katana. That image actually appears in this volume on the reverse side of a full-color fold-out. The front side of this is a similarly memorable illustration: the four principal characters are laid literally and metaphorically naked; a sad looking gray beard with battle scars distributed across his body, a steel eyed young woman with an "X" cut across her chest, a guy with long red hair and less combat-shaped musculature ... a cigarette dangling from his mouth and the eye patch that usually covers his damaged right eye resting in the palm of his hand, and finally, a silver haired young man with a feral gaze and metal collar bolted to his neck.
After reading the book itself, I'd say that this pair of images is the best thing about the manga. DOGS might not be dull, and I wouldn't call it a failure. But, I wouldn't say that Miwa succeeds in his aims either. He shoots high with a mash up of elements in his stylish tales of urban violence, a sort of quasi-sci-fi action manga Le Samouraď. Unfortunately, the muddied landing is something of a hodgepodge. Reading it, you can see what Miwa was going for, as well as the deficits in the final product.
This PRELUDE volume introduces the manga's four tragic anti-heroes in distinct stories that sometime pull in guest appearances by others of the quartet. The tone shifts in variations of a larger theme from story to story, reflecting the attitudes of the stories' subjects. "Blade Maiden" Naoto's stars in a typical steely revenge plot with the heroine training to acquire the skills needed to avenge her family's death. Heine, the "Stray Dog" is not a particularly talkative character either, but in contrast to The Blade Maiden's coiled tension, the Stray Dogs simmers up to a rage filled boil of bullet ballet. The real note of distinction comes from the story of information broker Badou the "Gun Smoker." It's the one entry that doesn't mention the tragedy that defines its subject's life. This character's story opens with the anti-hero rappelling from a roof top to photograph an adulterer. He spots an heiress' lost cat on a ledge. Going for the feline, he drops, but, fortunately, his rope catches him in front of the window of a crime boss engaged in a masochistic past time. Hijinx ensue, with plenty of running, gunning, cigs and comical shifts in design.
Because of the loose binding between stories and shifts according to focal character, the overarching concept of what DOGS is as a manga series must assert itself through the visual style of the manga. The details of the protagonists' home city aren't laid out in these shorts, yet, the world and the stories do set the tone for each other. Despite the late inclusion of information about highly advanced genetic engineering, it's a cold looking, old world place without any artifacts to distinguish it from our time.
On one hand, the tired looking city seems to encompass the events, fencing them in with stone facades and cracked pavement. On the other hand, Miwa situates actions in the middle of a void of negative space. The two approaches complement together to frame DOGS' brand of stylish brutality.
If anything, DOGS errs on the side of overcompensation in this aspect. Though the setting does look gritty, the air of the place has the ozone scent of fiction; like it's set up solely and specifically to stage the type of action on display in the stories.
I'm not quite sure that Miwa has the taste or sense of moderation to pull off the slick, dark action that might be envision. Miwa can certainly draw an effecting figure. There's a specificity...a difference can be seen between how a loose, wild character stands and how a tense, knotted up one does. And, there's a rightness. If someone shoots low across the floor to advance below their opponent's guard in a knife fight or someone grips their head in their hands, it looks like the genuine article.
Unfortunately, this rightness backfires when falling back on routine rather than introducing something fashionably new.
The detailed world of homage layered on homage is fragile. It breaks rather than bends. When Miwa pulls from the familiar templates or presents an under-considered image, the dissonant note is enough to snap a scene's hold. A psychopath with his head tilted, a Joker smile-snarl across his face, holding his gun sideways or a young woman with tiny wings given the black and white frills of a loligoth ensemble becomes risible.
The notion of a group of characters who aren't a team is intriguing, but the loose plot puts a keen focus on the manga's presentation. When its Heine painfully staggering forward, trying to return fire, it works. When it's a slow motion handgun duel, climaxing in a sentimental scene of synchronizing firing, the sappiness curdles the image from stylish to over-mannered.
DOGS has a mature rating, which isn't inappropriate for a manga series with notable instances where nudity is mixed with violence in an almost sexually charged manner. For perspective, its original serialization took place in ULTRA JUMP, home of BATTLE ANGEL ALITA: LAST ORDER, READ OR DIE, BASTARD!! and TENJOU TENGE. Due to its style of story telling, characterizations and approach to angst, I'm inclined to recommend DOGS more to a fan of FINAL FANTASY than I would to a fan of its cinematic antecedents. This might be unfortunate, considering that I think many of those readers might be younger than the explicit content/mature rating aims the book.
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.

Hey folks, Ambush Bug here with another dollop of indie goodness. We’ve got a couple of classic collections of weirdness--one modern and two classic—for you this week. So check ‘em out, why-don’t-cha!


It’s another collection of Poe poems, so of course the word content is great. Not sure how I can offer a proper criticism to these classic poems, so I guess I can just say that if you like Poe’s poetry then you’ll enjoy this book. As far as the art is concerned, Gahan Wilson provides the cartoony, crosshatched images. Wilson’s accompanying images give the book a whimsical quality. Wilson did an especially good job of giving image to some of Poe’s more abstract poems such as THE CONQUEROR WORM and THE SLEEPER. This is a quick read, yet one that would aid those of you who fear books without pictures in appreciating the classics.

ARSENIC LULLABY PULP EDITION #0 Arsenic Lullaby Publishing

Here's a sick little number I picked up at Fangoria's Weekend of Horrors (link). The creator of the book, Douglas Paszkiewicz, stated that he works for MAD MAGAZINE, but the stuff in this oversized comic is too twisted even for that mag. And twisted it is. Siamese twin paternity tests, Hitler's childhood toys, miscarriage dolls, alien-cow things thwarting kidnappings, a very sad doughnut, and my favorite--back alley abortion clinics called "spread easies." Bwah! ARSENIC LULLABY is sure to offend, but it does do in such a way that it shows real brains and talent behind it. So even though you may be offended, at least you know you are offended by someone with talent and not someone going for low ball humor. I believe I reviewed ARSENIC LULLABY in one of my very first Indie Jones columns. Back then I called it sick and twisted fun. Years later, and the sicks and twists continue. Great stuff.


Now, this book is a product of its age. Boody Rogers was one of the first storytellers to put panels together and call them comics and he’s arguably one of the best. But Boody definitely had some issues and those are prevalent in this collection of some of his more surreal works. There’s a pretty steel misogynistic tone to these stories with women used as horses by centaurs, bearded ladies, the prevalent pain and torment endured by his female characters, and the objectification of the female form. Now whether or not you can see past that will determine if you’ll like this. I’m not necessarily comfortable with some of the undertones in this one, but I can’t help but marvel at the imagination that this guy had. Some of the imagery is the stuff of dreams and nightmares. Say what you will about his views towards women, but there’s some extremely surreal stuff going on here that definitely deserves a look-see. Editor Craig Yoe has put together an amazing collection of some of Boody’s best stuff. Appreciators of the odd and grotesque will have to have this and it’s a worthwhile picture into a mind and time that is very much different than the world we live in.


Another cosmic war, another D-list Marvel character is getting a makeover. This time, it's the loveable Darkhawk and his Black and Silver armor that, c'mon, everyone who was around in the 90's thought looked cool and bought the first issue of. But cool it was not, and the character rarely garnered any attention except in the occasional New Warriors stint and more recently, the LONERS mini-series. Now we're seeing a bit of the evolution of the man (barely not a kid these days) and where his armor has come from and it's pretty engaging, especially with the twist at the end of this issue goes as before the idea of the "Fraternity of Raptors" seemed a little too derivative an idea as far as cosmic comics go. The revelation though, that the Raptors are assassins and thieves, not watchers of the universe, plus the transformation Christopher/Darkhawk goes through towards the end as we see more what his suit is capable of once he fully accesses the Null Zone is pretty impressive. All in all, this is just another example of what Abnett and Lanning (and C.C. Cebulski with the assist here of course) have been going through great lengths to accomplish ever since the days of ANNIHILATION - taking old toys, polishing them up, and making them a shining example in and of the Marvel Universe. - Humphrey


An impressive first issue from Jesse Blaze Snider about a group of resurrected vampires, one (the title character) good, the rest--not so much. There are some pretty original character designs here; especially one vamp with a cage around his face like Tom Waits from Coppolla's DRACULA. Much like his Shakespearian namesake, Romeo is a romantic and his tendency to fall in love (which is contrary to the other vamps’ penchant for bloodlust) is bound to get him into trouble. With nice Tom Mandrake meets Jim Lee artwork by Ryan Benjamin and the decision to set this story in the DCU rather than its own world, this is a vampire offering worth checking out. Could this new interest in vampires in the DCU lead to the return of @$$Hole favorite Crucifer? I seriously doubt it, but this is worth seeking out on the racks never the less. - Bug

THE SAVAGE SHE-HULK #1 Marvel Comics

Hulk's got another mouth to feed as a result of the rumble with Thundra a few months ago in RAMPAGING HULK. Seems the outcome of that rampage looks a lot like a green Thundra. Now, I'm treating this book as leerily as I am SKAAR (which actually is not that bad). The one thing this book has over SKAAR is that it’s set in the present Marvel U, so Lyra the new She-Hulk is bound to cross paths with Hulk Proper sooner rather than later. But still, there are an awful lot of Hulks running around these days and I'd hate for the gamma pool to get too diluted, especially since the main HULK book isn't really that good anyway. Fred Van Lente once again proves he's is a Marvel writer to watch, but the verdict for the relevance of this title is still out. So far so good and with a match-up against the She-Hulk we all know and love next issue the fun is just beginning. – Bug


So, why just a cheap shot of GREEN LANTERN 39? After all, this is it, the beginning of the end. This is the culmination of the year long build-up in GREEN LANTERN, GREEN LANTERN CORPS and all the denouements that have been cascading through other titles. So, why just a cheap shot? Well, this doesn’t really feel like the beginning. I was already fully vested in “Blackest Night” before reading this issue and have been for months. This issue was well written and exceptionally drawn as expected, but with the exception of introducing the new one man Orange Corps Larfleeze this all feels like territory I have already traversed. Hal Jordan is still grappling with his new Blue power-boost and the Guardians are still suffering from the greatest Napoleonic complex in the galaxy. This reminds me very much of the slow burn approach Johns took with “Kingdom Come” in JSA. Let’s just hope it doesn’t take Larfleeze 10 issues to get to where he’s going like it did with Gog. And a quick note on Larfleeze: in a universe where teeny-tiny rings can make massive planet-sized constructs, Larfleeze just doesn’t feel that scary. Granted Orange is the embodiment of greed, not fear, but all the characters in the book did seem terrified. In the GL universe the more subtle the villains the scarier – I’m still more terrified of Sinestro than all the members of the Red and Yellow Lantern Corps combined. - OD

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

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Check out the @$$oles’ ComicSpace AICN Comics page here for an archive and more @$$y goodness.

Readers Talkback
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  • April 15, 2009, 9:21 a.m. CST


    by LOTGA

  • April 15, 2009, 9:27 a.m. CST

    I'm not interested in reviews by 8 year olds.

    by rev_skarekroe

    Sorry, 8 year old.

  • April 15, 2009, 9:39 a.m. CST

    Yea I agree about the 8 year old

    by JBouganim1

    I think its cool that hes writing reviews but upon looking at his site, he has liked every comic he has read besides one with marvel monkeys..which he gave like a 7

  • April 15, 2009, 9:48 a.m. CST

    The Kid reviews are borderline painful.

    by robotdevil

    Maybe 8 year olds find them interesting..?

  • April 15, 2009, 9:53 a.m. CST

    I like The Kid

    by Fico

    says Michael Jackson

  • April 15, 2009, 9:55 a.m. CST

    I respect the 8 year old reviews more than the adult ones

    by terry1978

    You know that shit is genuine, even if he does love everything he's read.

  • April 15, 2009, 10 a.m. CST

    Wait a minute

    by optimous_douche

    When I like a lot of what I review (becasue we pay for our own fucking books unlike other review sites), I'm called a DC plant.<p> I just turned six and a half last month, where's my bitch-ass accolades for being genuine?

  • April 15, 2009, 10:03 a.m. CST

    the kid, GL

    by Laserhead

    Nothing against Liam, but I'm not interested. I just don't come here for that- reviews with the sophistication and depth that one would expect from a 9-year-old. And it seems like a waste of space.<p>Honk if you're really, really tired of the build-up to Blackest Night.

  • April 15, 2009, 10:09 a.m. CST


    by optimous_douche

    I'm ready to see more lights than when I dropped acid at Laser Nirvana...uhmmm for my 4th Birthday.<p> Just trying to keep continuity between posts.

  • April 15, 2009, 10:17 a.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    People really did think he was awesome back then, thats so funny. He's like Joe Mad or J. Scott Campbell... for a brief shining moment back in the 90s, people fucking loved you guys... now? Silly. <br><br>Although, I may check out this new Darkhawk/war of the Kings thing, as I really enjoyed the main book. which I think says a lot about this series as, generally, I hate aliens. If the Star Wars Universe was real, I would totally join the Empire and then volunteer to work at the Kessel Spice mines so tht I could laser whip Wookies and Ewoks and Gungans and Rodians and all those alien bastards, so all that aside... I enjoyed War of Kings, so I might pick up this Darkhawk one.<br><br>Also, the Wolverine book sounds good. MAverick? Wow. Does he still wear that stupid Tiger mask?

  • April 15, 2009, 10:20 a.m. CST

    I love the kid hate

    by Joenathan

    It makes me laugh to imagine the Dad reading the Talkback. Ah.... good times...<br><br>Optimus, congrats on turning six and half! I really enjoy your genuine child like wonder. Hold on to that, kid, because let me tell you... third grade is a bitch... long division... cursive...

  • April 15, 2009, 10:27 a.m. CST

    Wolverine hasn't been on Dancing With The Stars

    by Melvin_Pelvis


  • April 15, 2009, 10:30 a.m. CST

    Current Batman stuff

    by Melvin_Pelvis

    if that doesn't give them the excuse to use the phrase *Mantle of the Bat* every other sentence<br> Well they're just not trying

  • April 15, 2009, 10:36 a.m. CST

    I don't know why you guys don't like The Kid.

    by SleazyG.

    We thought he was a good addition. He offers a different perspective than anyone else in our crew, and he has a lot of enthusiasm. He also reminds me of what it was like to be young and be excited to read any comic book I could get my hands on, whether it was NICK FURY by Steranko or ARCHIE COMICS. Does he like everything? Yeah, largely, but not entirely--he still makes some criticisms here and there. But so what if he does like everything? Dude's EIGHT, man.<p> I like his energy and his attitude. He makes things fun and brings a little levity to the column. I also don't understand how anybody could possibly be unhappy to see that somewhere out there is an actual KID who likes COMICS. You know how rare that is nowadays? I think it's great this kid likes HAWKEYE as much as TINY TITANS or INCREDIBLES, y'know? I mean, weren't we all there once?<p> And remember: just like with any other reviewer who's not your cuppa tea, feel free to, y'know, scroll past his review and read the next one. Like, instead of ganging up on and criticizing an 8 year old cuz you're so cool.

  • April 15, 2009, 10:38 a.m. CST

    My rating for Liam the Kid's review: 5.5 out of 10.

    by Leafar the Lost

    As I read Liam's reviews, I kept imaging some 8 year old kid reading the comic and saying things like, "There is this bad guy who tries to kill the good guy, but then this other girl shows up and...". It's amazing that he can write so well for his age. I would rather read his reviews than Massawyrm's, which are almost unreadable at times. Also, Liam should teach Massawyrm how to write, because I don't think he knows how to. Also, his review was a masterpiece compared to Harry's back med, pain pill fueled review of Marley & Me. Liam the Kid should have his own regular feature on AICN. I would like to see him do a movie review of Wolverine: Origins, if his parents allow him to see it.

  • April 15, 2009, 10:40 a.m. CST

    Battle for the Cowl winner should be...

    by ME_M

    ... Die Fledermaus!

  • April 15, 2009, 10:41 a.m. CST

    I do scroll past his reviews.

    by rev_skarekroe

    Children like movies and TV shows and cars too, but I don't want to read their reviews of that stuff

  • April 15, 2009, 10:46 a.m. CST

    Uhmm, NO, just NO....

    by Psynapse

    Some of us NEVER were high enough to think Dorkhawk was cool. He was yet another gimmick character of his time and nothing more. <p> On 'The Kid;: What Bug said, if you don't like 'em, just scroll past. Slamming an 8 year old only shows what a sad piece of shit YOU are.

  • April 15, 2009, 10:48 a.m. CST

    So don't read 'em Rev....

    by Psynapse

    Rather than be such a little bitch about what an awful inconvenience to your aesthetics they are. Christ, fanboy whine much?

  • April 15, 2009, 10:49 a.m. CST


    by Blackguard

    .....NEEDS TO BE INKED!! Garney's scratchy pencils do NOT print well. It makes the comic look unfinished. Just because we CAN print pencils doesn't mean we should. Give Klaus Janson a call.....

  • April 15, 2009, 10:51 a.m. CST

    I don't dislike the Kid

    by Joenathan

    I think its weird that you guys are so excited by his enthusiasm, but I don't mind that really. Of course, I don't read The Kid's reviews either... But I do love the complaints and imagining the Dad reading them... that really makes me chuckle.

  • April 15, 2009, 10:59 a.m. CST

    What's wrong with The Kid reviews?

    by fiester

    He's funny and has a pretty clear-cut aesthetic sense. He knows what he likes and what he doesn't like and why and he articulates it in a clear manner. I like his reviews and hope they keep him around.<p> Unless it turns out "The Kid" is actually Harry in disguise pulling a Thunderbolts on us....

  • April 15, 2009, 11:06 a.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    The Kid has unbridled enthusiasm for a dying media, which sends some TBers into a rage and makes others tingle in their funny places.

  • April 15, 2009, 11:07 a.m. CST

    Good job, Liam.

    by OGoncho

    You've got a knack for this. Keep up the good work, buddy.

  • April 15, 2009, 11:13 a.m. CST


    by The Penultimate Gunslinger

    It's losing a bit of momentum now - I'm no longer as eager for each new issue as I was (talking Green Lantern here of course)

  • April 15, 2009, 11:17 a.m. CST

    The kid

    by The Penultimate Gunslinger

    This week I actually enjoyed his review of Hawkeye - it is good to get the perspective of someone who isn't neccesarily aware of decades worth of Marvel history and is coming into it fresh. That said, I would limit him to one review per week. Maybe in his own special section, innit.

  • April 15, 2009, 11:18 a.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    hmmm... I'm going to check it out, but... does the idea of zombie lanters sound a little iffy to anyone else? We'll see... I'm just hoping its not the usual broad comedy intelligent and mean zombie route, but in space with a power ring, making giant rotted boxing gloves or whatever...

  • April 15, 2009, 11:25 a.m. CST


    by hatemphd

    I have the first 6 issues... and yes, everyone I knew bought the first issue (shiny!). In retrospect, it was pretty bad :/

  • April 15, 2009, 11:26 a.m. CST

    I dunno if the Black Lanterns will be zombies, per se.

    by SleazyG.

    Or have ring constructs that work like the GLs, either. We've already found out the Blue Lanterns are there simply to shore up and boost power for the GLs--Hope supplementing Willpower. We've also found out there's only one Orange Lantern, because he represents Avarice/Greed, the Red Lanterns actually vomit red plasma at their enemies, etc. Not all rings work the same way, and one can only assume the as-yet-unseen Violet and Black Lanterns will have some suprises as well.

  • April 15, 2009, 11:29 a.m. CST

    Yknow why I like the Kid?

    by MCVamp

    He gives a rundown of the action in the book. He doesn't make vague comments about the creative team, a reference to another unrelated book, and then ultimately say something to the effect of "I'm not convinced this title will stay good , but I'm intrigued" WITHOUT MENTIONING ANY ELEMENT OF THE BOOK'S PLOT. Those reviews? Annoying to all fuck.

  • April 15, 2009, 11:33 a.m. CST

    Oh there will be more....

    by Psynapse

    Tan has posted several sketches of the Orange Lanterns on Newsarama. They are ALL predators of a sort. <p> And I believe you mean the as-yet-unseen Indigo Tribe, Sleazy. We've seen quite a bit of those oh-so-smokingly hot Violet Lanterns aka the Star Sapphire Corps. <p> Marvel's been milkiing the zombie craze for a while now, at least DC is doing something different with it.

  • April 15, 2009, 11:33 a.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    I hope so, because DC versions of the Marvel Zombies, all crooked and rotting and flying weird while cracking dead joke/puns while making big skeletal hands holding shovels or whatever would be terrible.

  • April 15, 2009, 11:35 a.m. CST

    Yo Joenathan

    by Psynapse

    The Black Lanterns will be NOTHING like Marvel's take.

  • April 15, 2009, 11:46 a.m. CST

    I did mean Indigo.

    by SleazyG.

    My bad. And the other Orange Lanterns, from what I've read, are gonna be constructs, not living breathing characters, because Larfleeze is hogging all the orange ring power for himself.

  • April 15, 2009, 11:50 a.m. CST

    orange lanterns

    by optimous_douche

    Already happened in this issue, Larfleeze creates his other team members.<p> Makes sense hoarding the power since he is the embodiment of greed and what not...<p>

  • April 15, 2009, 11:51 a.m. CST

    Ultimate Hulk twist

    by drewlicious

    So far I'm enjoying it. Nice touch having Betty as She-Hulk. Seeing how the Hulk is pretty unpredictable in this world, her fate could go either way. I don't recall seeing her since this incident and Ultimatum has already proven they're more than willing to kill off their characters.

  • April 15, 2009, 11:53 a.m. CST

    Can we all agree on ONE thing?

    by Psynapse

    Admit it, the Star Sapphires FREAKING HAWT. I mean, I'm a polesmoker and these gals make ME tingly.

  • April 15, 2009, 11:55 a.m. CST

    I DO skip the kid reviews.

    by rev_skarekroe

    I'm just making my opinion known. Hardly whining. If you'd like to check out the difference compare my posts here to people complaining about the rating of the new Terminator movie or flames on Optimus Prime or whatever.

  • April 15, 2009, 11:58 a.m. CST

    I'm over the kid as well.


    I mean you guys let him review comics because he has a website. You know who else has a website, just about everyone who owns a computer. Or as the kid would say a 'Puter.

  • April 15, 2009, noon CST


    by Joenathan

    You don't know that. They could totally be ib the vein of Evil Dead/wise cracking zombies. It is entirely possible. For all you know this entire idea was inspired by his love of Marvel Zombies. I hope it isn't, but... you never know.<br><br>Giant Rotting Boxing Gloves

  • April 15, 2009, 12:12 p.m. CST

    I enjoy the Kid

    by Green Arrow

  • April 15, 2009, 12:13 p.m. CST

    I enjoy the Kid's reviews...

    by Green Arrow

    reminds me of listening to my son telling me about a new comic he just read. It is a fresh perspective, and one that most of us outgrew as we got older. Cut the kid a little slack. He's one of us, just younger.

  • April 15, 2009, 12:14 p.m. CST

    A response from dad

    by AndrewGol

    Hey Everyone. I just wanted to chime in and thank everyone for the feedback. As far as having a heart attack at some of the negative feedback for my son's reviews...well it comes with exposure. Liam's not logging in on his own reading these ready to jump off a building but he is well aware that his type of reviews aren't for everyone. Actually someone last week mentioned that it would be better for him to talk about what he liked and didn't like in terms of overall story instead of doing beat by beat synopsis of the story and I relayed it to him (constructive criticism is never bad) and he tried to do things a little different this time around. We both realize that his reviews aren't everyone's cup of tea but he (and his brother) love reading and he really enjoys putting his thoughts about the books down and would do so regardless of whether we were on AICN, his own blog or just doing journals at home. He was very happy to get the invite to join the gang here at the site and hopefully he'll continue to contribute reviews as long as they'll have him. As a geek who's read comics most of his life, I'm thrilled that my kids have the same enthusiasm and my big concern is making sure this is all just fun for him. The moment it becomes like work the 'magic' just wears off and reading comics will be like eating brussle sprouts.

  • April 15, 2009, 12:16 p.m. CST

    Um, yeah I do Joenathan

    by Psynapse

    Marvel's co-opting a fad, DC (while admittedly doing their own co-opting of same fad) is actually expanding on a longstanding aspect of the Green Lantern Mythos. The Blackest Night WILL be deadly serious. Literally.

  • April 15, 2009, 12:17 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

  • April 15, 2009, 12:17 p.m. CST

    Oh, I see Psynapse...

    by Joenathan

    so, Geoff Johns has shared his plans with you, has he? Well... I stand corrected then...

  • April 15, 2009, 12:19 p.m. CST


    by Psynapse

    I sincerely apologize. I lashed out at someone I genuinely like (though don't always agree with)and that wasn't cool of me. Must be my time of the month I think.

  • April 15, 2009, 12:24 p.m. CST

    3 NEW The Expendables IMAGES!

    by empireofgays54321


  • April 15, 2009, 12:24 p.m. CST

    Actually he shared them with quite a few people

    by Psynapse

    You obviously haven't been reading any CBR or Newsrama articles on it over the last YEAR. LOlz.<p>Nice try, but like paying to see Twilight, you should quit while you can.

  • April 15, 2009, 12:25 p.m. CST

    www.NukeTheFridge.COM has 3 The Expendables IMAGES!

    by empireofgays54321

    Harry only has one!

  • April 15, 2009, 12:26 p.m. CST


    by I am the most horrible

    Dumbasses. I like them and I'll continue to read them. <p> I said it before, Kurt Busiek started out the same way when he was a kid. I'm glad he didn't listen to the haters.

  • April 15, 2009, 12:27 p.m. CST

    Geoff Johns has shared his plans with me....

    by The Penultimate Gunslinger

    ... and zombie old Superman is going to take over the universe, but be stopped at the last moment by Jimmy Olsen, who will be a ginger lantern. Then Jimmy and Krypto will have a dog-on-man kiss that will set the internet alight and get DC coverage in all the world's media. Then the green lanterns will be led by Jimmy. The End.

  • April 15, 2009, 12:28 p.m. CST

    But don't tell anyone, or I'll be in big trouble!

    by The Penultimate Gunslinger

  • April 15, 2009, 12:30 p.m. CST

    I think

    by Joenathan

    DC versions of Marvel zombies will blow. I bet thats what happens. They'll make giant tombstones to hit people with and shit... how lame.

  • April 15, 2009, 12:31 p.m. CST

    Beanworld was great until

    by chrth

    he added his real-life affair as a plot point.

  • April 15, 2009, 12:31 p.m. CST

    I don't remember

    by Joenathan

    8 year old Kurt Busiek's reviews on AICN... Bug, will you dig those out of the archives so we can read them? What an astiounding piece of history.

  • April 15, 2009, 12:32 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    Ginger Lantern. Gross.

  • April 15, 2009, 12:43 p.m. CST

    What about Tales of the TMNT #56?

    by crackerfarmboy

    That's getting rave reviews left and right. The TMNT are being reborn. Check it out:

  • April 15, 2009, 12:48 p.m. CST

    No problem, Psynapse

    by rev_skarekroe

    It's the internet.

  • April 15, 2009, 12:53 p.m. CST

    The Kid

    by gooseud

    I wasn't sure if the Kid was really cutting it, but then I read his Hawkeye review, and hit upon this nugget: "Hawkeye was good because he has a really cool costume". Hmmmm......upon reflection, thats actually completely correct! Hawkeye is indeed cool because he has a really awesome costume, I say with no sarcasm that I actually couldnt have said it better myself! VIVA LA KID!!!

  • April 15, 2009, 12:54 p.m. CST

    Now if The Kid.....

    by gooseud

    says in his next review "I think Bendis is sucky because he talks too much. His books stink like poop. 1.5 out of 10", I might have to introduce him to my daughter and have them someday breed the greatest comics genius in mankinds history!!!

  • April 15, 2009, 1 p.m. CST

    The weakness of the Lanterns

    by gooseud

    This is why I so rarely read mainstream big name books for any length of time before getting bored. Its because everything that can be said with these characters HAS been said (for the prime example, see Men,X). So instead of gracefully exiting stage left, you end up straining to create new things to say that invariably end in disaster. The Spider-Totem? The Speed Force? The Rainbow Brite Gay Pride Lanterns? The entire Ultimates universe collectively going down the shitter quality wise as we speak? These things never end well, and never will. Green Lantern is especially susceptible because hes so undefined to begin with, as his powers are defined as this: "He can create anything he wants with his ring". Alottttt of room for bad writers to play with there. Having said that, its still the best thing DC puts out every month.

  • April 15, 2009, 1:04 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    While I disagree wholeheartedly with your "Bendis smells of poop" stance, I vehemently agree with you on the Hawkeye cool costume issue. (Did you all see what I did there? I combined Hamkeye and Bullseye in order to differentiate like we do with Buckycap... I know, I know... genius.) I'm kind of torn though because I kind of liked the design of Hawkeye's slightly updated costume, the darker purple one. I'd kind of like to see that one again.

  • April 15, 2009, 1:06 p.m. CST

    Blackest night

    by Joenathan

    I can't wait for the color cacophony that will result when all those multi-hued boxing gloves start going at it when this story eventually comes to a head.

  • April 15, 2009, 1:08 p.m. CST

    Clichéd, dammit!

    by DennisMM

    Cliché is NOUN. Something can be A cliché, but it cannot BE cliché. The proper adjectival form is CLICHÉD, as in, "it's clichéd." Jebus, why can't experienced writers learn this? It's almost as if using the forms incorrectly is becoming a ...

  • April 15, 2009, 1:08 p.m. CST

    Optimus, did you not notice...

    by TheContinentalOp

    ...that everyone just assumed that the Evil Bat was Jason Todd, but he never took off his mask or owned up to it? Don't you think that kinda screams "red herring"?

  • April 15, 2009, 1:10 p.m. CST

    But Bendis DOES smell like poop!

    by Psynapse

    Why do you think Quesada gets so wet for him??

  • April 15, 2009, 1:11 p.m. CST

    The Blackest Night

    by Psynapse

    FOLLOWS The War of Light.

  • April 15, 2009, 1:12 p.m. CST

    Psynapse, if you don't like the poop smell...

    by Joenathan

    stop smelling his dick when after he finishes up... come on, man, thats just common sense.

  • April 15, 2009, 1:12 p.m. CST

    I enjoyed the Liam reviews

    by Animation

    Keep the 'Kid on board. It is nice to have a wide-eyed review, even if he does seem to like everything he reviews. I liked how he tried to act like he wouldnt read the kids-oriented Spider-Man stuff ALL the time, but that he went ahead and read it this time. :)

  • April 15, 2009, 1:15 p.m. CST

    Hector Hammond=Leader of The Orange Lantrerns

    by chetedawg

  • April 15, 2009, 1:15 p.m. CST

    Shark=Earth's Red Lantern

    by chetedawg

  • April 15, 2009, 1:16 p.m. CST

    You have me confused with your Mom again..

    by Psynapse

    But then, you DID pay to see Twilight so it's not as if you have much sound reasoning anyway.

  • April 15, 2009, 1:18 p.m. CST

    My mom

    by Joenathan

    has know for years to NOT smell poopy dicks, like I said, its common sense... duh.

  • April 15, 2009, 1:21 p.m. CST

    Maverick gets a Hell Yeah out of me too

    by Genre_Baby

    Mav is my favorite Marvel character and I'm glad to see that Jason Aaron is putting this always cool, but now ex-mutant to good use. I will be buying the series in collected form after this first issue, provided that Maverick continues to appear natch.

  • April 15, 2009, 1:26 p.m. CST

    Common sense?

    by Psynapse

    Sorry, but anyone who paid to see Twilight quite obviously has none. Furthermore, the fact this woman birthed you doesn't win her any brain points either. Just 'Easy girl' ones.

  • April 15, 2009, 1:31 p.m. CST



    Is easily DC's BEST big book and one of the best comics going right now, i for one am definitely not tired of it at all, and i think Blackest night is going to be one of DC's best event books ever produced, you guys all liked Sinestro corps war right? well i think this is going to be even BETTER! @ optimous_douche & SleazyG I thought Larfleese created his own corps as well, AT FIRST, now i am pretty sure they are all Living Breathing entities BUT Larfleese is in complete control over them, they are HIS! MWA HA HA!:P

  • April 15, 2009, 1:35 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    Hey, whats everybody's opinion on that book. I'm always tempted to pick up the first trade, but its Winnick, so... did anyone read it? Was it any good/fun at all?

  • April 15, 2009, 1:35 p.m. CST



    And to whomever did the quick shot review of GL #39 i don't know what the heck your talking about, Larfleese is pretty bad ass and a welcome addition to the GL universe i hope he is around forever, he is written beautifully, he killed 4 controllers for gosh dern sakes! I for one would definitely be afraid of him, more than any of the Yellow or Red Lanterns and easily as much as Sinestro.

  • April 15, 2009, 1:37 p.m. CST

    Oh ya also:P


    To the reviewer, its not going to take 10 issues, The Agent Orange arc is four issues long have patience for god sakes:P

  • April 15, 2009, 1:37 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    That is so weird that you keep bringing up Twilight, seriously weird. Why do you even remember that, do you take notes?

  • April 15, 2009, 1:40 p.m. CST

    He remembers The Twilight Incident for the same reason we Chicag

    by SleazyG.

    ...all remember Bartman. You seemed like you were doing okay, and then you did something so clueless and dunderheaded that it cost you everything, and nobody's ever going to let you live it down.

  • April 15, 2009, 1:41 p.m. CST

    We Chicagoans, that is.

    by SleazyG.

    Never know where the damned limit is.

  • April 15, 2009, 1:49 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    Boys, boys, boys... someday, you'll have a relationship that doesn't involve a credit card number and then you'll understand... okay, maybe not all of you, but still...

  • April 15, 2009, 1:51 p.m. CST

    I actually think The Kid's reviews are the best on here...

    by fiester

    ...because he talks about the book he just read and not the ancillary aspects of the title and its history, writer and artists. It's fresh and genuine--and, yes, he gives you a nice plot rundown that bolsters his critique of the issue (a rare thing on these pages). <p> I think the regular reviews on here could learn a thing or two from The Kid's approach: talk about the issue, not yourself!

  • April 15, 2009, 1:53 p.m. CST

    If I can scroll past the DC reviews.....

    by BangoSkank

    You guys can scroll past those by The Kid. <p> Kid's Dad- I was one of the people who suggested that your son refine his reviews a bit, and noticed the change immediately this week. I would have killed to have my father take an interest in something I was passionate about as a child.... Hell, at 36, I still would. Well done, my man.

  • April 15, 2009, 1:55 p.m. CST

    Joenathan ie Exiles

    by holidill

    Actually I found Winick's Exiles one of his best pieces of comic writing. I always looked forward to his issues and after he left it was good for a while as well. I think Bedard wrote it before Claremont came in and destroyed it.

  • April 15, 2009, 1:56 p.m. CST

    If the Kid is gonna put himself out there...

    by Homer Sexual

    Then he has to be prepared for feedback. Otherwise, it is being totally patronizing. <p> I gave him another chance this week, and I'm glad he likes comics. I'd probably enjoy talking comics with him. And he writes extremely well for an eight year old. <p> But add me to the list of those who will be scrolling past any future reviews he writes.

  • April 15, 2009, 2:09 p.m. CST


    by Homer Sexual

    Hell, yes, JoeNathan, check out the Exiles trades. They're great! I bought two (not one) Invisibles trades,as well as Starman Omnibus and Alias TP #1 to read on my vacation (starts tomorrow!) because of you all recommending them. <p> So let me recommend Exiles. No AIDS, no social activism. Awesome Mike McKone art. Characters coming and going, interesting alternative earths. This is one of my very favorite comic runs. <p> Even Chuck Austen was able to put out a couple quite good stories on Exiles. But then Bedard was mediocre and of course Claremont ended it...until now, and the first issue of Exiles seems like it might be good as well. It uses a great mix of characters and seems to be getting back to the roots, although probably with a softer edge than Winick had. <p> Of course, I'll buy most any book the Scarlet Witch (any version) is featured in. <p> Totally agree that the new She-Hulk was mildly entertaining, but she is certainly no Jen Walters. And of course, Me Love Rulk! That book rocks, despite being written by Jeph Loeb, who usually sucks but can occasionally do a good book. He is best writing stories that don't take themselves too seriously.

  • April 15, 2009, 2:16 p.m. CST

    The kid likes everything

    by danthemagnum

    Is Harry training a younger version of himself to cover comics?!

  • April 15, 2009, 2:27 p.m. CST

    Batman Red Herring

    by optimous_douche

    Nope, I'm going to take the masked bat at face value, it's Jason Todd and I'm thrilled it is.<p> However with the way things have gone lately, I wouldn't be surprised if it's Bruce Wayne who has now discovered the joys of bullet-play after firing his God Gun in Final Crisis.

  • April 15, 2009, 2:48 p.m. CST

    Re: Batman Red Herring

    by TheContinentalOp

    Fair enough. I think you're being willfully naive, but that is your right as an American.

  • April 15, 2009, 2:49 p.m. CST

    Was the big Orange Floaty head that ATE the sinestro lantern...

    by George Newman

    a Larfleeze construct? That part was so trippy! It seems that the Orange Lantern(s) will want to consume other color rings too. <p> I got into GL only a month ago. I've been gobbling up back issues, and can't get enough. So lucky for me, I'm not fet up with the slow build up. havent had to deal with in in realtime, heh

  • April 15, 2009, 2:49 p.m. CST

    Superman/Batman did, indeed, suck.

    by SleazyG.

    It sucked so long and so hard that I traded the first 10 issues back to my store for fat in-store credit back when the book first started. they got to sell them to people at inflated prices, I got to by books that didn't suck dong, and everybody was happy.

  • April 15, 2009, 2:51 p.m. CST

    yes add me to the list.

    by Homer Sexual

    ...the list of people who think you are just looking to pick fights with people, that is. <p> Heroes written by Loeb....dreadful even by Heroes standards. Ultimates 3....incredibly terrible. Long Halloween...ok but overrated. Daredevil Yellow...yeah, that was pretty good. Didn't read the others. Loeb actually wrote my favorite single-issue comic of the year, Ultimate Hulk annual. He still puts out a lot of junk, though. <p> I don't think that makes me a hater, but if so, fine. <p> And if the Kid wants to write with the adults, fine. But he does have to know he'll get criticized like all the other writers. That is actually treating him with more respect than just saying he's so great cause he's a kid. Like I said, that is patronizing (and condescending). But again, you can hate on me if you like.

  • April 15, 2009, 2:55 p.m. CST

    The "clueless" part...

    by SleazyG.

    ...was admitting to a room full of pop culture geeks that you watched "Twilight" and thinking nobody would bust your balls. Yeah, I get it--everybody in a relationship makes concessions. But when I've done it and copped to it I've known I gotta take my licks, and the same goes for all my buddies, including people involved with producing this column. "Twilight" or "Hanna Montana" is gonna get your chops busted cuz that's what we do--man up already and deal with it. It'll be somebody else's turn eventually--maybe even mine.

  • April 15, 2009, 2:56 p.m. CST

    fuck you child haters

    by bacci40

    the problem with comics, is that not enough are written so that anyone under 15 will read or like them<p> as a result, the comic reading public continues to age, with no one to replenish them<P> if this trend continues, in 10 years, there wont be a market<P> so liam...keep reading comics and writing reviews...and maybe you can use your archery skills and take out some of the tbers that hang around this site

  • April 15, 2009, 2:58 p.m. CST

    kid compromise

    by _Palmer_Eldritch

    can we maybe agree on one "Kid" review per week? otherwise I end up skipping through half the reviews, and since this is my favourite column, that makes me angry. <p> wouldn't like me when I'm angry!

  • April 15, 2009, 3:07 p.m. CST

    What does adamantium's indestructability...

    by firewhale

    ...have to do with Hulk ripping Wolverine in half? Logan's skeleton was bonded with adamantium making his bones unbreakable, but the skeleton is held together by ligaments and other non-bone tissue, so the adamantium's indestructability would be irrelevant. Someone please explain this to me if I'm wrong and I'll gladly listen, but I'm sick of this immortal, indestructable superman version of Wolverine.

  • April 15, 2009, 3:19 p.m. CST


    by TheContinentalOp

    You are confusing me with someone else. There's another guy running around calling himself ContinentalOp, minus the "the." Clearly, my use of the definite article proves me to be the one and only.

  • April 15, 2009, 3:31 p.m. CST

    George Newman


    I was in the same boat as you a year ago, never really read any DC up until then and GL is an amazing book. I don't think the Floating head or any of the other Orange Lanterns are constructs, i think they are actual living beings that he has consumed and taken control of, they are HIS!:P they are far to detailed and heavily inked to be constructs.

  • April 15, 2009, 3:36 p.m. CST

    No problem, Sector.

    by TheContinentalOp

    Maybe you and me could team up and hunt down that other motherfucker that's blaspheming my good name.

  • April 15, 2009, 3:38 p.m. CST


    by blackthought

    whoa... where am i?

  • April 15, 2009, 3:45 p.m. CST

    Darkhawk, Sleepwalker, Slapstick...

    by BerserkerMutant

    Kinda overdid that power wish-fulfillment thing back in the 90s, didn't they?

  • April 15, 2009, 3:50 p.m. CST

    Thanks Holidill

    by Joenathan

    I love alternate world stories, and I might check it out, despite Winnick being involved.

  • April 15, 2009, 3:52 p.m. CST


    by I am the most horrible

    While I believe you were just being a smartass I'll still indulge you. <p>No, Kurt Busiek didn't write reviews for AICN. That's stunningly obvious for umpteen reasons. As a kid he did however devour, review and comment via lettercolumn in and on all kinds of comics. I remember seeing his name. His criticisms and ideas about comics had an impact on their content and eventually he had a tremendous impact on the medium. And he started much like "The Kid" did.

  • April 15, 2009, 3:54 p.m. CST

    Alright Homer,

    by Joenathan

    Thats fair, if you're trying my recommendations, I'll give yours a go. Enjoy your vacation and try to give Invisibles a little extra chance, as you start, just cause late 80's early 90s vertigo might seem a little dated now, but its totally worth it. I love Alias, I hope you like it.

  • April 15, 2009, 4 p.m. CST

    The kid and Wolverine

    by BlueHawaiiSurfer

    I like the kid doing reviews. I have an 8 year old though and I can tell you he isn't allowed to read some of those books. Like when the kid talks about Bulls killing the guy with an exploding arrow. Yeah, sorry not for my kid but he does have a passion for the material and the writing. I think nurturing that is HUGE, props to the parents on that. As far as Wolvies skeleton goes that has to be true. Otherwise he couldn't bend his back or many other joints. I can't recall ever seeing a detailed x-ray but I'm assuming that has to be the case.

  • April 15, 2009, 4 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    You are correct, sir.

  • April 15, 2009, 4:01 p.m. CST

    I love the Kid contraversy

    by Joenathan

    between slamming him and praising him, it is the creepiest, weirdest talk back ever. LOVE IT!

  • April 15, 2009, 4:04 p.m. CST

    Can anyone give me the issue of Captain....

    by BangoSkank

    America in which Ed Bru took over. Or actually the name of the first trade? I haven't read Cap since US Agent took over for him.... Yeah, I hold a grudge that long. But I am now willing to give it another try, and I don't know how to use google.

  • April 15, 2009, 4:04 p.m. CST

    I am most horrible

    by Joenathan

    I SEE said the blind man...

  • April 15, 2009, 4:06 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    Its the latest volume: Issue #1

  • April 15, 2009, 4:08 p.m. CST


    by BangoSkank

    Well that should make it easy enough. Thanks!

  • April 15, 2009, 4:14 p.m. CST

    But Why Don't Ultimates Count?

    by Homer Sexual

    Honestly, the abomination of Ultimates 3 and Heroes is why I tend to say I don't like Loeb. <p> I am not really that sensitive, but you called me out for saying I'd scroll past the kid. However, I am not going to make any further references to the kid. And I don't feel bullied, so that's all right. <p> Most people don't like Rulk. What is weird is that Loeb's Heroes episodes were slow moving, ponderous and totally without humor. Whereas both Rulk and my beloved Power Princess Bangs Hulk Annual are fast moving and full of fun.

  • April 15, 2009, 4:21 p.m. CST

    No problem, Bango

    by Joenathan

    They're all in easy trades. I think the first is called Winter Soldier.<br><br>I'm not a fan of Loeb either. He's on my list of creators not to buy... although I may violate that soon, as Winnick writes Exiles, so... never say never, I guess.

  • April 15, 2009, 4:23 p.m. CST

    I'm looking forward to the kid's review of Ultimate Wolverine vs

    by thelordofhell

    The kid should be about 40 by then.

  • April 15, 2009, 4:23 p.m. CST

    In regards to the amusing/ mildly annoying controversy:

    by BerserkerMutant

    Lordy, lordy. I take all the a$$holes reviews with a grain of salt. Why should the kid's be any less valid? It's just another opinion, and I can respect that. I know some of us are nostalgic for old-school 70s-80s comics goodness, some of us prefer "modern" narratives, and still others among us can see the virtues of all aspects. Thank God a kid is actually sitting down and reading something. T'hear some people tell it, this hobby is on the damn ventillator- an entire generation was seduced by video games. Kids need heroes, and seeing a youngster trying t'be objective about pop culture is encouraging.

  • April 15, 2009, 4:24 p.m. CST

    I'm looking forward to the kid's review of......

    by thelordofhell

    Ultimate Wolvering vs. Hulk #6.......the kid should be about 40 by then.

  • April 15, 2009, 4:26 p.m. CST

    Jesus I give up......fucked my post up twice

    by thelordofhell

    Ultimate Wolverine vs. Hulk

  • April 15, 2009, 4:50 p.m. CST

    Danadanadanadandana Dare

    by mulberry

    I am old enough to have caught the tail end of an 80s revamp in Eagle comic (just before it went to the great comicon in the sky), and even then it still had a little something. <p>Gung-ho mix of Flash Gordon and Captain America (pretty blatantly nicking from the former), but who was always going struggle when the world became cynical about the establishment and vanilla integrity and war heroes, and comic writers started writing for themselves, not kids, and were winking ironically every which way so frantically that you could mistake them (and their paper-thin post-modernist tales) for prolongued epileptic siezures. <p> I just assumed he would remain a figure of Nostalgia. <p>What sort of hero nowadays seriously wears a crisply ironed military uniform and brill-creme? <p>Probably lucky Alan Moore didn't have a stab at him, or we'd end up with Digby being bummed by the Mekon and Dan being a neo-fascist sado-masochist. <p>Interested to see this one. Sounds like Ennis has stayed true to the "Boy's Own" essence whilst updating the narrative.

  • April 15, 2009, 5:20 p.m. CST

    The Kid is actually a better writer...

    by rbatty024

    than most of the regular contributors on this site. He's already head's and shoulders above Harry. <p> I actually think there should be more comics aimed at children. What are the comic book companies going to do once all the overweight middle aged comic book readers (stereotype alert) start falling over from heart attacks? Comic books need to build a new audience. Sure, they can't be all things to everyone, but every comic company should have a line of kids' comics.

  • April 15, 2009, 5:34 p.m. CST

    good grief

    by DrLektor

    you honestly let an 8 year old kid review that Hawkeye comic? What on earth is wrong with this picture? Normally I enjoy his reviews, despite them being just one long spoiler it's a refreshing change to see it through the eyes of someone who's not such an anal fanboy... but dude, what the hell? Far be it from me to plead naivity, no doubt all of us watched R rated moves at that age and read all sorts of horrible adult trash... but we didn't get reviews published. I'd at least make the effort to *stop* my kid from reading or watching anything I thought might be a bit violent. How can you condone this?

  • April 15, 2009, 5:36 p.m. CST



    What i don't understand is why so many people even come to this site if they seem to hate the writers, it seems most talkbalkers to, makes no sense to me, i love the site and love the people involved with it, especially Harry.

  • April 15, 2009, 5:40 p.m. CST

    I bring it up...

    by Psynapse

    Because A) you wish I wouldn't and B) it is incontrovertible proof that you are quite often simply full of shit.

  • April 15, 2009, 5:44 p.m. CST

    Harry is a helluva guy.

    by BerserkerMutant

    And some of the other writers seem pretty cool, too. Like somebody I wouldn't mind hangin' out with shootin' the shit about comics an' whatnot.

  • April 15, 2009, 5:46 p.m. CST


    by rbatty024

    I say that with tongue in cheek, kind of. I enjoy the site, but you have to admit a lot of the writing on here is pretty amateurish. Of course, that is part of its charm. It's like a poorly made film with a lot of heart. You can tell the filmmakers were excited about the material even if they didn't have the talent to execute it properly.

  • April 15, 2009, 5:47 p.m. CST

    Furthermore Joenathan...

    by Psynapse

    You DO realize that making shit covered dick insults towards an openly gay person only reveals you for the homophobe you are. Yeeeeah, try to dig your way out of THAT one.

  • April 15, 2009, 5:55 p.m. CST

    by MikeTheSpike

    First, we're taking it as a given this kid exists? In addition, I'd like to second the esteemed Dr. Lektor's disbelief that anyone would let their kid read that issue of Hawkeye. I mean, that's just negligence in a bottle.

  • April 15, 2009, 6:03 p.m. CST

    I disagree...

    by Psynapse

    Attempting to blindly shield children from some of the less than savory aspects of life is FAR more irresponsible in my book. This parent is involved and discusses the situations with the child, not simply expose them to it and forgetting about it.

  • April 15, 2009, 6:21 p.m. CST



    I understand what you mean, that's why i like this site, they write a review as i probably would but with maybe a little more know how, the biggest reason I like the site is that their movie tastses are pretty dead on to mine with a few exceptions, I also used to hate Siskel and Ebert as a child, but as i have grown older i have come to really value Eberts opinion on film and agree with him more often than not also compared to when i was a child.

  • April 15, 2009, 6:22 p.m. CST


    by MikeTheSpike

    What less than savoury aspects of life are depicted in this comic? It's just a bunch of cartoonish, over-the-top violence. "Now you watch out son, cause a psychotic mutant masquerading as a hero might jam a pen through your eyeball." You wouldn't take an 8-year-old to see Watchmen, and hopefully you wouldn't have him sit down and read Hawkeye #1. Assuming, again, that the kid exists!

  • April 15, 2009, 6:34 p.m. CST

    I figured it out!


    The gun toting Batman is actually Liam the Kid! <p></p> On a different note, The new Punisher book is the best thing to come out of The Dark Reign storyline.

  • April 15, 2009, 7:15 p.m. CST

    Next Week: The Kid Reviews Crossed

    by gooseud

    I'm trying to think of a punchline that doesnt send me directly to hell, do not pass go, do not collect $200.00......sorry, I got nothing.

  • April 15, 2009, 7:16 p.m. CST


    by gooseud

    I dont hate it as most do, I dont love it......lets put it this way, its been pouring all day here, and there are puddles in my front yard deeper then that book. Ok, so he's like the Hulk....but red....and a douchebag....and he smashes. That about cover it? Yep? Ok then.

  • April 15, 2009, 7:18 p.m. CST

    BangoSkank: Cap

    by gooseud

    Prepare to have your mind blown, Cap has slown down a bit recently, but those first 25 issues=pure gold, one of the best runs on any title in years and the final definitive proof that Brubaker is God.

  • April 15, 2009, 7:21 p.m. CST

    Bendis/Brubaker Editorial Conference

    by gooseud

    Video footage of the most recent Brubaker/Bendis editorial conference over the direction of the Marvel U has been leaked online, feel free to check it out, Bendis is a little more tan here as he was coming off two weeks in Bermuda:

  • April 15, 2009, 8:17 p.m. CST


    by gooseud

    I read it for the Thor crossover, found it to be pretty much the textbook definition of "mildly amusing", and check back in now and then. There is certainly a place for "mildly amusing" on my plate.....and that place is standing in Barnes and Noble reading the book without paying for it. Thats what we call the "Old Man Logan" spot. As far as the Rulk's top 5 candidates are : 1. Paste Pot Pete 2. The Beyonder 3. Flatman from the Great Lakes Avengers 4. That Doug dude who used to merge with Warlock back in New Mutants 5. Liam's dad

  • April 15, 2009, 8:45 p.m. CST

    That would be Murder, Mike

    by Psynapse

    in this instance...

  • April 15, 2009, 9:02 p.m. CST

    HULK is shallow.

    by SleazyG.

    And everybody knows it, including you. And the reason nobody knows who Rulk is yet isn't because it's deep, it's because it's garbage.Even the creative team and EIC have admitted as soon as they reveal Rulk the sales numbers will drop, so they're gonna drop it off as long as possible.

  • April 15, 2009, 9:03 p.m. CST

    My point being...

    by SleazyG.

    ...they may not even know who he is yet, or change it, just to drag things out.

  • April 15, 2009, 9:11 p.m. CST

    That kid scares me:

    by TedKordLives

    " It was funny how he took care of the other guy, too." Oh, you mean when he pinned the guy's hands to the van with arrows and then sent him screaming over the edge of a parking garage, falling 3 stories to an explosive end that probably killed some cops in the bargain? He liked THAT? <P> I am really starting to worry about the generation coming up behind us. Like I don't have enough reasons to flee America.

  • April 15, 2009, 9:15 p.m. CST

    WOLVERINE: WEAPON X = Jack Bauer with claws!

    by TheGhostWhoLurks

    Co-starring Maverick as Tony Almeda. I wonder if he'll turn out to be working with the enemy in Hour 18?

  • April 15, 2009, 9:30 p.m. CST

    And I like how The Kid reviews books where...

    by TheGhostWhoLurks

    Innocents are casually and graphically murdered, yet this 8-year-old thinks it's "funny." Can't wait until this desensitized urchin becomes a teenager!<p>Where are his parents? Oh, right... they're the ones buying these books for him and letting him have access to mature sites like this.

  • April 15, 2009, 9:33 p.m. CST


    by TedKordLives

    He thought THAT was funny? Between this and those Terminator masks for kids to run around in, I'm very disturbed. <P> Right on, TheGhostWhoLurks. If a girl ever lets me put a kid in her belly, I'm going to be very restrictive in what the kid takes in, entertainment-wise. I mean, there is a parental advisory on the cover for a reason (I know, because once I saw the shit Bullseye was doing, I checked JUST to make sure it was there).

  • April 15, 2009, 10:23 p.m. CST

    Alas, I read Darkhawk back in the day...

    by Chaotic Blue

    And I admit, I'm one of those die-hard canon geeks, so I know that the problems I have with WoK: Darkhawk and WoK: Ascension are things that most other folks aren't going to care a whit about. The armor already had an origin, it had a purpose, and there was barely the slightest attempt to handwave what came before over the course of this series. I mostly walked away from Marvel after One More Day, but I came back for this, in a rose-colored nostalgia of what once was--I know it wasn't great, but it was the first comic I collected--and now I'm all irksome again. I'll follow along for a little while longer, but I'm just about wishing I hadn't bought those issues.

  • April 15, 2009, 10:57 p.m. CST

    Kids & Comics

    by Buzz Maverik

    I really like the Kid's reviews. Especially when I was reviewin', I always said that the very act of reviewing a comic book was ridiculous because when I was a kid, I didn't need some 30 year guy writing to tell me that it was cool when Iron Man found all those people whom the Controller had stuck discs on and was brain draining. I also didn't need the same 30 year old guy telling me that I'd be intelligent if I pretended to like all those dense captions in JUNGLE ACTION instead of skipping them until I got to the panel where the Panther, as usual, stomped on Tayate and Kazabe's heads, then almost got killed by Erik Killmonger. I'd have spat Slurpy on an adult comic reviewer.<p>Comics are a little bit like rock music and skateboards (except in a geeky way that'll never get you chicks). They're a little rebellious.<p>What I'm wondering is if the Kid gets his comics comped. Because even though my old man hauled in the dough, he never gave me enough for all the comics I wanted when I was a kid. It's not that I wanted to shoplift, you understand, but I NEEEEDED those comics. And the peer wouldn't believe the peer pressure to steal. I'd always say to my friends, "Come on, what's the matter, you chicken. Little chicken boy has to PAAAY for his comics..."

  • April 15, 2009, 11:31 p.m. CST

    Buzz Maverick

    by KCViking

    That might be the finest writing you've ever done. I do mean that in a good way.

  • April 16, 2009, 12:57 a.m. CST

    I think the Kid should take over the column entirely...

    by paralyser-pro

    it would be an improvement on most of the self-aggrandizing bull we read here. In fact I'd let the Kid write the entire site if I wasn't afraid Harry would get bored and eat him.

  • April 16, 2009, 5:27 a.m. CST

    more kid issues

    by _Palmer_Eldritch

    I agree with what BerserkerMutant and rbatty have said. the Kid's reviews are well written and it sure is a good thing he's got so much love for the medium at his age. <p> One review per week is fine, after all you also point out his website, which has more. Why? Because of the goddamn hyperbole, which, as I have mentioned before, ruins most of Harry's reviews post TPM. Reviews are a form of criticism. That doesn't mean it has to be all out destruction (like on many talkbacks), but there should be some form of reflection involved. <p> <p> And Berserkr: we come here for the information (at least I do) and to hear other people's opinions IF they ring true. But writing positively about somehting just beacuse you saw it before everyone else is just lame.

  • April 16, 2009, 5:41 a.m. CST


    by Continentalop

    "Motherfucker?" "Impersonating?""Blaspheming your good name?" <P> While confusion is never good, I do think there is room for two people to have similar names as long as people are astute. And despite the fact you insulted me (but I am sure it was tongue in cheek), I am going to take this time to compliment on your obvious good taste in literature. Nice to see a fellow Hammett fan.

  • April 16, 2009, 6:20 a.m. CST


    by MikeTheSpike

    Right, murder. And what a lifelike, sobering examination of it that was!

  • April 16, 2009, 6:39 a.m. CST


    by Continentalop

    While normally I don’t believe in continuing a debate from a previous TB, Sector continues to ask me to respond. Therefore, here is a reply to why I don’t think Stan Lee was a thief and should be looked as a co-creator along with Kirby: As I said before, one of the things I look as evidence towards Lee having a hand in the creation of many of the early Marvel Characters is the naturalism he brought to them. And when I say naturalism, I am not implying that is all one should look at as the criteria for a good comic book character. But that is what separated the Marvel Age characters from DC and Harvey and the other companies at that time period. <p> Naturalism is, of course, a literary movement that searched to replicate a “believable everyday reality,” as opposed to Romanticism and Surrealism; and Stan Lee was the man who introduced this concept to superhero comics. Google Stan Lee and naturalism and you’ll get dozens of comments from fans, experts and comic book writers and artist applying that term to Stan Lee (even Alan Moore credits Lee with introducing naturalism to comic books and adding another dimension to superheroes). Now Google naturalism with Jack Kirby and you’ll see hardly a mention, unless it is applied to his joint work with Stan Lee (“Lee and Kirby brought naturalism to comic books”) or to a term to differentiate his style with Lee’s (as in, “Kirby work was NOT based on naturalism”). No one applies the term naturalism directly with Kirby. <p> Why is this term so important? Because it wasn’t just the great character designs and art and wild adventures that made Marvel comics popular or made their characters so unique, it was also the added characterization, rounded personalities and humane faults that made them so loved and successful. The Thing’s angst, the Hulk’s pathos, and Spider-Man’s day-to-day troubles and personal problems; without these elements these characters would not be nearly as memorable. <p> And yes, while the Thing was based on Jack Kirby and his personality, it is my belief that it was Stan Lee who added such elements as the Thing’s brooding and doubt about his love affair with Alicia Masters, or added the love triangle between Reed Richards and Sue Storm. I also believe it was Stan Lee who added the Ben and Johnny’s feud and Doom’s nobility and complexity as a villain (whatever you want to say about Darksied you can, but noble isn’t one of them). <p> That added human element and sometimes soap operatic nature is not something you find in Kirby’s work. Yes, he helped CO-create romance comics, but this is something he did with Joe Simon. There is nothing in Kirby solo work to show he wanted to create “realistic” people. In fact, much of his work shows the opposite; the majority of his characters where much larger than life, whose problems were not the same ones that everyday people suffered but instead things beyond us. The New Gods, The Demon, Kamandi, The Eternals, OMAC, none these characters had to deal with everyday problems or had a life that resembled that of a normal man or woman. No, these characters were pure Superhero epics (which is fine, but that is completely different from what made the Marvel characters so popular). And like I said earlier, you don’t see the squabbling, conflict and love triangles in Kirby’s Forever People as you do in the Fantastic Four or the X-Men. <p> (And yes, many of his characters were made from the same mold, because Kirby constantly revisited the same themes. It isn’t hard to see the connecting lines between the Inhumans and later Thor stories (which I admit were probably exclusively Kirby’s ideas, since they fit themes that Kirby worked with later) with his later work, such as the New Gods, Mr. Miracle, The Forever People, the Eternals, and Captain Victory and Galactic Rangers (which tapped into Kirby’s Cosmic themes, and well as his love of mythology, the works of Joseph Campbell and ideas expressed in Chariot of the Gods). Or see some similarities between Kamandi, Devil Dinosaur & Moonboy and his Golden Age character Tuk the Caveboy. Hell, I can see some similarities between Mr. Miracle and Machine Man (both characters are outsiders who strive to be free and find a place for themselves). All of these characters touched upon plot devices, themes and motifs that Kirby loved to explore and revisit in his work; and became as recognizable part of his signature as his drawing style (hence why you can have a comic book like Gødland that acts as a homage to his style).) <p> Even more evidence to Stan Lee’s contributions is in the dialogue. Say what you want in defense of Kirby, but his dialogue has always been considered his weakest part. Once again, Google Jack Kirby, this time with dialogue, and you’ll see hundreds of comments. Some will be defenders trying to explain why Kirby’s dialogue wasn’t that bad, but many others are critics and detractors who will point out the failings in his dialogue. The mere fact that there are so many comments about it says it is an issue. Jack Kirby was a genius and he was great, but he was far from perfect, and dialogue was without a doubt his Achilles’ heel. This was undoubtedly one of the areas that Stan Lee contributed and helped out with the books; and by giving these characters a voice he was helping to establish their personalities; and by giving them a personality he was involved in the creation of a character. Shakespeare might not appear on stage or design the costumes of Othello or Hamlet, or even direct the play but no one can doubt he helped make those characters by putting the words in their mouth. Well Stan Lee might not have came up with the idea of the Silver Surfer (the story I heard was that he Kirby drew it as a background character and Stan saw him and loved his look so much he asked Kirby to put him in the story) but he did give him his personality and his eloquent monologues that is part of his appeal. <p> And while we are discussing Stan contributions, lets discuss what he did with other artist. You already stated that “Ditko wasn’t a great writer like Kirby was” so by default it must have been Stan Lee who wrote the majority of the early Spider-Man stories and came up with the plots, which introduced such characters as Dr. Octopus, Sandman, Vulture, Kraven the Hunter, the Scorpion, Mysterio, The Lizard, The Enforcers, Electro, etc; as well as creating the best supporting cast in comic books (Aunt May, J. J. Jamison, Flash Thompson, Liz Allen, Betty Grant, Mary Jane Watson, Gwen Stacy, etc.). I don’t know how much Lee contributed to the character designs, but I am pretty sure he was the one who established the personalities of the characters and the tone of the series; I can’t imagine a die-hard follower of Ayn Rand and Objectivism pushing the theme of “With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility.” And remember, it was Spider-Man who was the most popular character in all of Marvel comics, a character that Kirby had nothing to do with besides draw the cover art to Amazing Fantasy #15 (based on Ditko’s design). <p> Plus even after Ditko left Spider-Man, Stan Lee was still able to write and plot such great storylines as the Kingpin killing Frederick Foswell, the unmasking of the Green Goblin, Dr. Octopus meeting Aunt May, the introduction of the Prowler, the best Mysterio story (when he “shrinks” Spider-Man down to 6”), Harry Osborn’s drug addiction, and the Death of Captain Stacy, just to name a few. Also, during his post-Ditko run he helped create such classic Spidey characters as the Rhino, Robbie Robertson, The Shocker, Silvermane, Captain Stacy, and even the Kingpin of Crime and his son Richard Fisk. Not bad. <p> And while Stan Lee did create such bad comics as Stripperella and Ravage 2099, he also created such lasting and/or memorable characters (without Ditko or Kirby) as Daredevil, Captain Mar-Vell, She-Hulk, Gladiator (Melvin Potter), Immortus, Mr. Fear, Mr. Hyde,, Mephisto (A devil or THE devil, depending on who you ask), Titanium Man, Hawkeye, The Mandarin and even Iron Man (Kirby only designed the bulky armor on the cover –which was soon replaced by Ditko’s sleeker designer – but Heck and Lee designed Stark, Potts, Hogan and came up with their personalities). When you add Ditko’s name, you also get to add Dr.Strange, the Leader, and, of course, everyone associated with Spider-Man. <p> I’m not saying Lee didn’t do bad work, or that later work was as good as his Marvel Age stuff; in fact, I believe that Lee, Ditko and Kirby all suffered when they stopped working together (I know you consider Captain Victory to be a master piece, but many people, look at it as a failure; Don Markstein’s Toonepedia says it isn’t his best work and I remember it was one of the comics featured in the early 80’s comic “Worst Comic Book Awards” along with Neal Adams Ms. Mystic and Skateman, so I am not alone in my criticism of it) You add up all of the characters Lee had a hand in creating, all of these comic books he helped write (many of them huge successes, like Spider-Man), and then compare it with what his co-creators did one their own, and you see that he obviously added something to the mix. And while I have heard how Kirby wrote plot notes in the margins that Stan just followed, I have also heard stories about how Stan would change things or dictate stories and plots to Kirby. Supposedly one of the reasons Kirby left was because Lee would change the plots of his stories or write dialogue that Kirby disagreed with. <p> So once again, I reiterate my point: while Kirby might have been the more talented of the two, and he might not have gotten his far share of credit back then, but I see no evidence that Stan Lee was a thief and didn’t help create these characters with Jack Kirby.

  • April 16, 2009, 6:41 a.m. CST

    The Kid Makes the Column Complete IMO

    by optimous_douche

    I’m with Grant Morrison on this one, how can you bitch or be put out by words on a page. It’s fine if you disagree with something the writer says, but it baffles me how people can be so up-in-arms about having to scroll.<p> I started reading the @$$hole column from day one because I found the columnist approach to reviews refreshing versus the straight “just the facts maam” reporter approach. And the week late publishing mantra gave me time to read the books so nothing would be spoiled by the @$$holes deeper insights.<p> Comics are twenty-two pages on average. I always found it rather silly to read a scene-by-scene “review”, like most sites deliver, for a piece of work that only takes fifteen to twenty minutes to absorb. I really think I’m the minority in this regard though by all of the sites that do take this approach, Previews magazine, and the TalkBack posters that request less pontificating.<p> Truly, The Kid gives those that are plot hungry and scene description thirsty exactly what they have been looking for. If you don’t want your reviews laden with history and comic industry context, we offer The Kid. If you like to take the deeper cut into the book there’s all of us non-kids.

  • April 16, 2009, 7:59 a.m. CST

    ContinentalOP Cant resist

    by gooseud

    Cont, havent you learned by now not to take Sector's bait? All hes going to do is goad you until you respond, and then unleash a 37 paragraph diatribe that no one will actually read. He tries to goad me at least 3 times a week, you have to just ignore him. Learn from me, young Padawan.

  • April 16, 2009, 7:59 a.m. CST


    by gooseud

  • April 16, 2009, 8:03 a.m. CST

    Darkhawk sucked

    by gooseud

    I didnt read that shit back in the day (because my taste has always been impeccable even back in my formative years......well, that and the comic book thing doesnt really help score the chicks back in the early 90s) but I read the reprint of #1 and 2 in the War of Kings mini, Good God thats fucking hideous. Did people actually read that book? WTF was going on in the 90's? 90's books make Mark Millar look like Mark Twain. I havent felt that bad since I watched that Ronald Reagan movie!

  • April 16, 2009, 8:38 a.m. CST


    by LaserPants

    Please tell me everyone read the last ish of CAPTAIN BRITAIN. It featured some awesome stuff with Dracula and his crew on the moon. It may, in fact, be Marvel's best book. Actually, aside from the AWFUL Bendis and Quesadilla books, Marvel is pretty much kicking ass these days -- Cap Brit, Iron Fist, Thor, Old Man Logan, Incognito, Cap America, Nova, Guardians of the Galaxy, War of Kings, and Thunderbolts are all essential reads.

  • April 16, 2009, 8:50 a.m. CST

    Jason Todd's BATMAN Actually Makes WAY More Sense

    by LaserPants

    In real life, in order to fight his war on the crime, the BATMAN would HAVE TO be an armed, murdering, sociopath. That quote about bad guys not being scared by a broken arm or leg is totally true. But if you go into their hideouts with guns blazing and kill everybody -- THAT would strike the kind of fear BATMAN is supposed to instill. As he stands, Bruce Wayne's Batman would be very effective against street, low-level thugs, not so much against guys like the Joker -- as the film THE DARK KNIGHT succinctly demonstrated; a film in which the Bad Guy KICKED THE LIVING SHIT OUT OF THE GOOD GUYS on every conceivable level. In real life, a vigilante ninja would have straight up killed the Joker. You know it and I know it.

  • April 16, 2009, 9 a.m. CST

    Laser is right

    by gooseud

    all that cosmic stuff is awesome, Nova in particular. Nova is a freakin incredible book. And yes, thats the fatal flaw of comics: Batman has to kill the Joker. It simply has to happen. Unfortunately it cant because comics is an open ended medium who will need to continue to use Joker for future storylines. Thus, these tortured half assed explanations and rationalizations for not taking what is the obvious course of action

  • April 16, 2009, 9:04 a.m. CST

    After all......

    by gooseud

    if a guy is robbing a bank, and wheels on the police with a gun getting ready to unload on them, they blow his ass away. Afterwards, does anyone sit around saying "We took the easy way out. By making us kill him, that criminal actually won. We should have found a way to get him without blowing him away". Hell f'n no. People only think like that in comics. In anything remotely resembling real life, that guy was a scumbag and you saved your buddies life by taking him out. If in fact you have him in your sights, dont pull the trigger, and he blows away your buddy, the Joker is absolutely right: the blood is on your hands.

  • April 16, 2009, 10:18 a.m. CST

    Comped Books

    by AndrewGol

    Hey Buzz. Liam doesn't get books comped. He's had a lot of publishers and creators send he and his brother books directly after they've seen his reviews (usually signed copies or similar books he might like) and usually what he does is give away any extras so other people can read them, too. He's much more thoughtful than I was at his age, heh. I would have horded every last copy I got. In terms of paying for comics or books in general I've always felt that reading shouldn't be part of their allowance or anything like that. Buying toys or video games is one thing, but I (almost) never say no if the boys want to buy a comic or book. At worst, we'll take a trip to the library to get some new reading material. Their enjoyment of reading (and writing) has helped them so much in school and I do my best to not discourage it

  • April 16, 2009, 10:32 a.m. CST

    Mature Books/Sites

    by AndrewGol

    I wasn't going to comment since typically on issues like this you aren't really going to change anyone's mind but since it has come up a few times...why not. First off, none of the kids have access to 'mature sites' like this. Liam isn't signing on to the computer, logging in, surfing the web and then doing HTML to get the reviews up. If he could do that, I'd encourage him to go into computer development...more money in it for him. The kids read them with me and he'll either type the review in word or read the review to me and I'll do all the legwork. I'll tell him about some of the feedback but he's not actually looking at these sites. As far as the content of the books there's nothing I can say that will change people's minds as to whether the material is appropriate for him. I'd like to think I know my kids pretty well and know what they can and can't understand and do my best to keep them from material that I don't think is appropriate for them whether it's TV shows, games or books. He's certainly wanted to read Kick Ass and Walking Dead but for me those books are too over the top. What he found funny in that Hawkeye scene wasn't the fact that he crucified the guy to the van with the arrows and killed him. It was the particular line when Hawkeye said he'd drop the perp off to the police. When he literally sent the van off the roof, dropping it and the perp onto the police it made him chuckle, just like anyone would at a similar cheesy line in an 80s action flick. There are certain things Liam can handle that I know his brother can't. Some of these movies are more mature than what we read as kids, and while I don't think something like Hawkeye or Deadpool is meant for everyone, I know my kids and what they can and can handle and they're certainly smart enough to know the difference between watching something on TV or reading about it and repeating it or endorsing the act. Now if there are no reviews next week because he got his bow and arrow and emulated Hawkeye impaling me to my car I'll concede I was wrong ;)

  • April 16, 2009, 10:57 a.m. CST

    Andrew - KICK ASS

    by optimous_douche

    First off, The Kid is awesome and refreshing. And kudos to you for being such an involved Dad.<p> Tell him to not to be too upset over missing out on KICK-ASS.<p> Aside from the nuaghty title he ain't missing much.<p> On that, if someone is enjoying KICK-ASS please enlighten me as to why. I fully admit I walked away disgusted and bored after issue 2. Did it get better?

  • April 16, 2009, 11:53 a.m. CST

    Batman Killing

    by Continentalop

    I don't man not killing as a general rule, but the fact that he doesn't put homicidal maniacs like the Joker six feet under just shows how ineffectual as a vigilante he is. You kill just the Joker and the murder rate in Gotham would drop in half! <p> Plus, this bullshit moral reason is just that, bullshit. Joker has proven time and again he is willing to kill whenever given the chance, and has shown the ability to escape from Arkham whenever he wants. If any criminal in the "real" world demonstrated such behavior, I think their would be a standing order to shoot to kill on site. Anytime Batman allows the Joker to live, he is indirectly responsible for any innocent lives he takes after that. <P> Man, I just realized - Bruce Wayne is a douche!

  • April 16, 2009, 12:29 p.m. CST

    Douche Wayne.

    by TedKordLives

    That is all. <P> (Darkhawk rocks!)

  • April 16, 2009, 12:41 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    You guys had NOTHING to do last night. Busy, busy, busy. I can't believe that you are all still debating the Kid. Awesome.<br><br>New Incognito came out yesterday and it jumped into some good world expanding stuff.<br><br>I also picked up the first two issues of Pax Romana, which is pretty awesome as well.

  • April 16, 2009, 2:52 p.m. CST

    War of Kings: Ascension:

    by TedKordLives

    Is some crazy shit. I really dig what they've done with Darkhawk over the last few years(I haven't read it all, but I keep up with it on Wikipedia). I'm not really cool with retconning his armor's origin (which was, as stated above, established in his own series), but, if it ties him in with the larger Marvel U then I guess I can't complain. <P> Oh, and Nova is Quasar now? And terminally ill? So basically, the old Quasar gave him the Quantum Bands so he could kill time until he dies? Odd...

  • April 16, 2009, 3:17 p.m. CST

    Dracula on the Moon!!!

    by Continentalop

    I agree Laser. I love Captain Britain and the current story line is just awesome. Dracula is coming across as one of the best villains in Marvel again. <p>And he has a friggin' Castle on the Moon!

  • April 16, 2009, 3:20 p.m. CST

    Mr. Gol

    by MikeTheSpike

    I don't get it. He can't read Kick Ass, but Bullseye ramming a pen into a woman's eye socket is fine? I'm just curious as to what criteria you're using to "ban" certain books, while others get the go-ahead. Again, assuming the kid exists.

  • April 16, 2009, 3:22 p.m. CST

    Captain Britain & MI:13-

    by TedKordLives

    Is really one of Marvel's best right now. I read my buddy's copy but I think I might have to get the trades. Dr.Doom's chat with Drac on the MOON is too fucking awesome. <P> I know it's Doom, and he can do pretty much anything, but does anyone have any idea how he GOT to the moon?

  • April 16, 2009, 3:30 p.m. CST

    TedKordLives, re=how he GOT to the moon

    by Continentalop

    One word: Magic!

  • April 16, 2009, 3:32 p.m. CST

    A bunch of whiney, petty man-children attacking an 8 year old...

    by thecomedian

    Do you f***wits complaining about The Kid have any self awareness at all? You know he's the one who should actually be reading the adventures of men in bright funny costumes on four color paneled paper right and you're the freaks, right? This would make a great robot chicken sketch.

  • April 16, 2009, 3:32 p.m. CST


    by TedKordLives

    I'm of the mind that Doom can do what he damn well pleases. He beat the Beyonder, for fuck's sake. That's like beating Bale in an staring contest.

  • April 16, 2009, 3:46 p.m. CST

    Dr. Doom is Marvel's Batman

    by Continentalop

    Someone here (I can't remember who so I can't give credit) said that Batman is Ulysses of the comic book world: A normal human who has made himself the pinnacle of human potential and now dares challenge the gods (White Martians, Superman, Darksied, etc.) and wins. That is the same thing that can be said about Doom; a normal man who has pushed himself to reach his full potential and now challenges god-like beings: the FF, Thor, Silver Surfer, Mephisto, Galactus and even the Beyonder!

  • April 16, 2009, 3:56 p.m. CST


    by AndrewGol

    Kick Ass is an overload of 'mature' images from language, nudity and much more extreme violence than what one can get from a PG suggested non MAX Marvel title. There are just different degrees of what we're comfortable with in letting him read. Hawkeye is more violent than Amazing Spider-Man but less violent than Punisher Max (which probably would have shown the empty hole in her head and the eyeball sticking out on the pen. I don't get the 'again assuming he exists line'. If you've gone to his site you could see that he's done in person interviews with creators (unless he was a figment of their imagination) as well as signings at comic cons. He's accomplished a lot for an 8 year old (as has his little bro) and we're very proud of him

  • April 16, 2009, 4:01 p.m. CST


    by TedKordLives

    Wow! That's about right. Kinda like how Deathstroke is DC's Captain America. <P> Just for the record, I know how Blue Beetle could kick Deathstroke's ass. Or at least survive the fight.

  • April 16, 2009, 4:08 p.m. CST

    Blue Beetle would kill Deathstroke!

    by Continentalop

    You want to know the reason why the JLI was able to last all those years without heavy guns like Superman or Hal Jordan or Wonder Woman as a member? Because they had fuckin' Ted Kord to bail them out.

  • April 16, 2009, 4:17 p.m. CST

    Fucking A!

    by TedKordLives

    And that's why there's a scarab tattooed over my heart. Man, I love those JLI issues, but Giffen & DeMatties (SP?) really shit on Ted. I mean, all he did was drive them around. To the point where he had a weight problem? Fuck that and their stealing plot points from Watchmen.

  • April 16, 2009, 4:19 p.m. CST

    by MikeTheSpike

    I mean, fair enough. He's your kid an' all. I am perhaps clouded by my own reaction to the scene, which I found rather shocking. It's rather more visceral than the over-the-top blood and guts you'd see in, say, Marvel Zombies. But just so Tipper Gore can sleep that much better at night, let the record show that I'd have difficulty handing that over to an 8-year-old. And the thing about him not existing was mostly a gag.

  • April 16, 2009, 4:31 p.m. CST


    by steverodgers

    I am assuming you know - can you tell me the issue where Batman tells Ted "I never thought you were second string"... i can't remember and it's driving me crazy.

  • April 16, 2009, 4:35 p.m. CST

    I don't think that ever happened.

    by TedKordLives

    In 'Countdown to Infinite Crisis', Batman slaps tea all over Ted. In that same issue, Max tells Ted he was never second string. I think you're mixing up the two. I'm pretty sure Batman had no respect for Ted whatsoever. At least, that's what his last app. implied. Of course, nearly everyone in that hell-blasted travesty was WAY out of character.

  • April 16, 2009, 4:38 p.m. CST

    Ted: Thanks!

    by steverodgers

    It was Max? My memory is for shit. Would have been much better if Batman said it.

  • April 16, 2009, 4:43 p.m. CST

    I agree.

    by TedKordLives

    But fuck Batman. In the immortal words of Wesley Willis: "I whupped Batman's ass! I whupped, Batman's ass!" <P> Well, Ted kicked him once while being mind-controlled. But he DID get in a hit, so suck it Bats!

  • April 16, 2009, 4:43 p.m. CST

    Ted Kord WAS never second string...

    by Continentalop

    ...Especially in Crisis on Infinite Earths where he is one of the heroes selected by the Monitor to guard the tuning forks and as the representative of his world (being selected to over Captain Atom and the Question) when he meets the reps of Earth 1, 2, X and S (he even tells Harbinger to shut up and stop the intros). <p>

  • April 16, 2009, 4:52 p.m. CST

    Yeah, but...

    by TedKordLives

    when they assault the tower, Ted is easily overcome by shadowdemons and is forced to jump from the tower. He's thinking 'This is it'(i.e.I'm gonna fucking die) and the Monitor returns him to his homeworld. It's like he was marked from the start. <P> And I gotta say, the one thing they got right in 'Countdown to Infinite Crisis' was Ted's reasoning-If I act like an idiot, no one will expect anything from me. It really made me think about my own life, and why I chose Ted as my personal Lord and Savior (Sorry Bale, Ted comes first). <P> Continentalop, you're right-Ted was never second string, he just fostered that image out of a fear of failure. Think about his origin for a second-he got the original Blue Beetle KILLED. He promised him that he'd carry on the legacy, but he was hamstringed from the start. Without the scarab, he could never properly live up to the name.<P> Yeah, I've spent way too much time thinking about this. That's why it's called an obsession. It is nice to be able to talk about it, tho.

  • April 16, 2009, 4:53 p.m. CST

    Ted Kord is the Anti-Batman

    by Continentalop

    Batman is like a highly skilled athlete and high school jock who has been playing sports all his life and is now in the pros. Ted Kord is like a regular joe who decides to take up a game and incredibly he has made it into the big leagues. <p> Bruce Wayne has like 15-20 years of intense training before he became Batman; Ted Kord probably got in a year of karate and training at the gym before he started being Blue Beetle. And that is what is so cool about him. The guy is easily overshadowed and "outclassed" but his commitment to living up to Dan Garret's memory keeps him going. He is Rocky Balboa and Rudy of the superhero set! <p> He might not be as tough or as "good" as Batman, but you can't deny his heart! <p> Plus, as my brother once mentioned, the idea of a new Blue Beetle is just laughable. It isn't his name or powers that make him interesting, it is the character of Ted Kord that makes him interesting. You give Ted Kord a different name he is still interesting; you give someone else the name Blue Beetle that is no guarantee that he will be cool.

  • April 16, 2009, 4:56 p.m. CST

    Dan Dare

    by MasterBaytor

    I have absolutely no idea how true to the roots of the character it remained. Probably not terribly, but Ennis seems to want to play the character as honorably and good and decent as possible. Ennis does a good job of playing with standard military tropes and doing them straight and the heroes in the story are writ large. Not in the review is a 19 year old girl who ends up giving orders to Admirals; because she's got the guts to make hard and sometimes unpopular decisions in the middle of a pitched battle. She knows when to stand & fight and she knows when to run & get help. I loved her story, but couldn't quite figure out how to include it without giving away the ending. Only drawback to the book (which I didn't include in the review) is that Ennis gets a bit preachy about the cynical politics of the world, but there's often a good character moment or sly joke in the mix to keep it from being too over-bearing.

  • April 16, 2009, 5:01 p.m. CST

    Exactly. Fuck that kid in El Paso.

    by TedKordLives

    Ted was the shit. Batman with Spider-Man's personality. And he will absolutely not stop. He will not quit until the job's done. And yeah, he was already in college when he found his calling. So yeah, it's pretty amazing he made it as far as he did. And that's why they thought it was ok to kill him: He was just cool enough for it to have an emotional impact, and just low enough on the totem pole that they felt he could be replaced. <P> Of course, he was just the first of the 'Charlton' characters to die and/or be replaced. Shit, Judomaster and Peacemaker both bought it in IC#7, Question died (of fucking lung cancer?) in 52, and Captain Atom finally fulfilled his 'destiny' of becoming Monarch. Only Nightshade gets a pass for some reason. <P> And the new Blue Beetle looks like a Power Rangers villain.

  • April 16, 2009, 5:11 p.m. CST

    Charlton characters

    by Continentalop

    I always thought DC should of had the Charlton characters be there Silver Age and say they operated during the 60s and 70s. It would help fill in the superhero void between the Golden Age and nowadays.

  • April 16, 2009, 5:15 p.m. CST


    by TedKordLives

    as an '80s child(born in 79), I always pictured Ted as perrenially existing in the '80s. I even wrote a draft of a BB movie that took place in the '80s when '80s nostalgia was all the rage. (It starts with Ted's alarm clock going off on his first day of being CEO. The radio alarm blares 'Girls Just Want to Have Fun'.) But that's not a bad idea either.

  • April 16, 2009, 5:34 p.m. CST

    The Kid Should Review The Preacher HCs

    by MasterBaytor

    It feels so wrong, it must be right.

  • April 16, 2009, 5:39 p.m. CST


    by TedKordLives

    can anyone name a hero who actually caused the death of his predecessor? That's some heavy shit to lay on a 20-year-old.

  • April 16, 2009, 6:08 p.m. CST

    Aren't They All Second String

    by optimous_douche

    With the exception of the "Trinity".

  • April 16, 2009, 6:38 p.m. CST


    by TedKordLives

    I'd say the exception would be the 'Big 7', not the 'Trinity'. That's probably open to debate, tho, since that includes Aquaman.

  • April 16, 2009, 7:42 p.m. CST

    A bunch of whiney, petty man-children attacking an 8 year old...

    by Joenathan

    THAT I would pay money to see... do you think they do that down in Mexico?

  • April 16, 2009, 9:35 p.m. CST

    As Both A Parent & Buzz Maverik...

    by Buzz Maverik

    ...I know we don't keep violent material away from kids because it will taint their innocence. We keep violent material away from kids so they don't learn that the violence inside them is okay. Anybody that's shocked about a kid's reaction to cool, gory violence has never spent any real time with a kid. My kids don't like comic books themselves, but they like superheroes from video games. I can't convince Buzz Jr. that Two Face isn't the real hero of Lego Batman. Man, I played pretend with Ajax and my niece Waif Maverik once. They are blood thirsty. The bad guy always ends up deader than a Chester Gould villain and in a really gruesome way.<P>The three most realistic depictions of childhood in literature: LORD OF THE FLIES, A HIGH WIND IN JAMAICA, and ENDER'S GAME.<p>Personally, when I was a kid I wanted to be Billy Jack, who talked a peaceful game but kicked people in the head, Colonel Hogan who got to live in a P.O.W. campand steal Col. Klink's cigars and make out with Fraulein Helga (I NEVER had a latency period; Ma and Pa Maverik banned me from watching LAUGH IN because I was, like, four and hot for Goldie Hawn and Teresa Graves)and blow up stuff. When I was in the 4th grade, I had to go to a shrink because Ma Maverik thought I should watch the cops try to capture Patty Hearst on the evening news and after the shoot out I announced I wanted to join the SLA...I was freakin' 10 years old and stealing SAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN and TALES OF THE ZOMBIE and DRACULA LIVES from the magazine section because my role model was the dude down the street who never wore a shirt and had the Frazetta mural painted on his band (okay, he was one my brothers but my point is still valid)...aaaauuugh!!!!

  • April 16, 2009, 9:41 p.m. CST

    Kidding About The Comp Books, Andrew...

    by Buzz Maverik

    Actually, yer lucky if yer kid's want comics. Mine want video games which their not sophisticated enough to steal yet and licensed Lego kits. I'll buy 'em a Lego kit, then one with George Lucas and JK Rowling counting their money, some of which used to be mine...

  • April 16, 2009, 10:26 p.m. CST

    About the Orange Lanterns...

    by Psynapse

    Those are the actual Orange Lanterns, not constructs of Larfleeze. The Orange aura surrounds its bearers more fully than the other because hey, it's Avarice given form. It appears that the Orange Lanterns are 'kept' within the Orange Lantern itself which makes sense if you think about it.

  • April 16, 2009, 10:32 p.m. CST

    And I repeat...

    by Psynapse

    DoucheHawk has ALWAYS sucked. Harder than a too-dollah Ho on fitty cent BJ night.

  • April 16, 2009, 10:56 p.m. CST

    Psynapse, re=Darkhawk

    by Continentalop

    While I have never been a fan of Darkhawk (and always thought he was a badly conceived and created character, I can't get upset at people who like him. Everybody has a guilty pleasure, and most often it was one of the first comic book characters they ever encountered. As Ambush Bug said, every character is beloved by someone (for me, it will always be the Stiltman and Porcupine). <p> Plus, as Stan Lee once said, there is no such thing as bad characters. Just bad writers (I mean, look what Morrison did with the Club of Heroes). <p> But yeah, Darkhawk does suck.

  • April 17, 2009, 6:21 a.m. CST

    Oh dude....

    by Psynapse

    NOT slamming anyone for liking him. I just have always disliked this gimmick idea (Oooh bird-like armor! Let's call him DARKHawk! Kiddies LURVS the grim-n-grittiness of it!), one note, wish fulfillment character.<p> Plus, let's be honest, Stan Lee was full of shit on more than one occasion.

  • April 17, 2009, 10:52 a.m. CST

    No he is gimmicky

    by Continentalop

    I guess my major point was that despite how flawed he is, he still has potential in the hands of the right writer. I mean, look at other "hopeless" characters such as Jack Flagg, American Eagle, and even the Gibbon who has had at least one moment to shine. <p> That is why I dislike killing off b characters for shock value or because they are unpopular. Seems like lazy writing.

  • April 17, 2009, 2:51 p.m. CST

    RE: Jack Flag

    by TedKordLives

    Warren Ellis had me rooting for that guy like a mofucka during his run on 'Thunderbolts'. Same for Steel Spider, another character I'd never seen before, but was aware of. It's definitely more about the writer than the character. <P> If DC gave me Ted, I could make him the most compelling character they got. I've only been thinking about it for 15 years now. I know things about Ted now that NO ONE knows. <P> I'm kinda proud of that.

  • April 17, 2009, 2:58 p.m. CST

    And if Ted doesn't end up with a blue ring...

    by TedKordLives

    at the end of this Blackest Night shit, I will punch DC comics in the face!

  • April 17, 2009, 3:05 p.m. CST

    And you should be proud TedKordLives

    by Continentalop

    It is like Ray Bradley's Fahrenheit 451 where the underground has to remember one book word for word so it will never be lost. When the apocalypse comes and society falls apart and people forget about comic book characters, you'll be there to remind them of Ted Kord, the Blue Beetle.

  • April 17, 2009, 4:21 p.m. CST


    by TedKordLives

    You'll be seeing me on YouTube in a BB costume by the end of the year. And that's a promise.

  • April 17, 2009, 4:21 p.m. CST


    by TedKordLives

    that's funny, since I work at a store called BookPeople.

  • April 17, 2009, 5:39 p.m. CST

    Ted Kord as a Blue Lantern...

    by SleazyG.

    ...would actually be really sweet. Prolly just a fanfic wish, but if Johns does it that would be kickass.

  • April 17, 2009, 6:06 p.m. CST

    It could totally happen

    by TedKordLives

    I hear Hal has been running around with more than one ring. And if any DC character screams hope, it's Ted. Hopefully the blue light will reclaim him from death. I'm glad you agree, tho.

  • April 17, 2009, 6:14 p.m. CST


    by TedKordLives

    Darkhawk/Sleepwalker for Prez!

  • April 17, 2009, 7:01 p.m. CST


    by TedKordLives

    Whoever wins, WE LOSE! <P> Actually, a fight between Darkhawk and the NEW Beetle would be pretty sweet, considering that THEY HAVE THE SAME EXACT ABILITIES!

  • April 18, 2009, 1:36 a.m. CST

    Devil and Daniel Webster

    by SpikeTBB

    Is that what the Harry cartoon is referencing? When The Devil is whispering to Webster to give up and he pounds his fist on the desk and tells him to "Be still!" ?

  • April 18, 2009, 7:47 a.m. CST

    "Cliched" (Don't have the accent on this keyboard)

    by WT

    Sorry to be pedantic but the word cliche comes from French printing- when a phrase kept coming up in a book, they used a single block (the cliche). So technically, yes something can be cliche (ie reprinted).

  • April 19, 2009, 2:49 p.m. CST

    Even fat as hell

    by dead-battery

    and depressed Ted Kord beat the the crap out of Guy Gardner in a boxing match. At least that's how I remember it. I'm starting to loose plot lines of comics I read more than a week ago. Old age sucks. There's a panel in Crisis on Infinite Earths (which I think is still pretty readable) where Blue Beetle and the Question are flying around in the Bug - looking just like a panal of Night Owl and Rorschach flying in Archie in the Watchmen. Probably coincidence for all the obvious reasons, but it struck me as kind of neat. Ted Kord as Blue Latern would, frankly, be about the coolest things comics has ever seen. Liam could review it: "And then the Blue Latern shows up. He used to be the Blue Beetle or something. His name is Ted. There all different colors of laterns, not just green. Blue Latern and Batman fight because he is mad that Batman didn't listen to him about something, things got all screwed up, and he was shot in the head. Blue Latern wins and says, 'Bruce, you always were an asshole.'"

  • April 20, 2009, 8:26 a.m. CST

    The Kid

    by GoodTimeBobby

    Liam The Kid's Reviews are Hemingway-esque compared to Harry's. Reading the The Kid's review of Dark Avengers was like reading Farewell To Arms compared with Harry's Marley and Me acid-trip abortion a few weeks ago. I think everyone is just jealous because the Kid may actually grow up to get laid and be normal and have a job that doesnt require a name tag and hipster smugness that so many on this site have setled for.

  • April 20, 2009, 4:36 p.m. CST

    Ted WAS winning...

    by TedKordLives

    ...the boxing match, but in between rounds Guy came over while Ted was fucking distracted and sucker-punched him in the kidney. That's pretty much where the fight ended. <P> General Glory was PISSED.