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#10 7/15/09 #8

Hey folks, Ambush Bug here. First off, my apologies for the bare bones column. Due to the hectic pace of the SDCC and a recent move, the @$$hole Super Computer 2000 was damaged, so no images this week. But I didn’t want to leave you guys without a column. Again, my apologies to the readers and the reviewers, but things will be back to normal next week…hopefully.
In the meantime, get ready for quite a few AICN Comics columns this week. I’m heading to San Diego to report from the 2009 San Diego Comic Con. I’ll be doing my best to see the sights, drink the drinks, and experience the experiences. Don’t get jealous though, I’ll be updating you the whole way, so it’ll be like you’re right there.
Speaking of which, for those of you attending the Con, I’ll be hosting a panel Friday early evening focusing on Horror Comics & Film with special guests Marv Wolfman, Tim Seeley, Jeff Katz, Whitley Strieber, Kevin Grievoux, and more. I’ll provide more info later, but be sure to show up and watch me talk horror with the panel.
And now, stripped of all images and bells and whistles, here’s this week’s reviews!



Writer: Geoff Johns Artist: Ivan Reis Publisher: DC Comics Reviewers: Optimous Douche & Prof. Challenger

Optimous Douche (Douche): My initial thought after traversing this macabre tale was, “why can’t there be more dead superheroes?” For anyone that feared BLACKEST NIGHT would simply be a tale of zombies in space, think again. Zombies are slack-jawed, mindless rotted flesh merely craving gory nourishment. Sure the resurrected heroes of the Black Lantern Corps have some flesh falling off their bones, but also a sadism unseen in the DC Universe. There are no stupid limericks or mantras to be found within the pages of BLACKEST NIGHT, these undead anarchists have rings that use death as their sustenance. It’s almost like the universe is facing an inescapable crisis, like some kind of final crisis.
Professor Challenger (Prof): My initial reaction was "wow." An understated "wow." But still "wow."
The buildup on this series has seemed excessively long and I'm not sure I'm up for DC continually doing things like this, but the payoff here is worth it so far for me. It felt like there was a deathly pall over the entire proceedings with the focus on a worldwide day of mourning and remembrance. It made even the celebration at Coast City seem somehow eerie. And that's the word that keeps coming to mind...eerie. There's an eerie feeling I get about bringing these characters back in such a perverse and evil way. I'm not a fan of zombies in general, but I do remember the nightmare I had as a kid after watching the original NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD. There is something at our spiritual core of humanity that says rotting corpses walking around without souls and focused on eating our brains (or in BLACKEST NIGHT, our hearts) that is universally unsettling.
The image of Ralph and Sue Dibny tearing the hearts out of the Hawks was incredibly shocking and would not have been as shocking but for the fact that Ralph and Sue were for so many years the heart of the DC Universe.
Maybe I'm just unsophisticated or something, but this issue fired on all cylinders for me. I've said it before and I'll say it again, Ivan Reis is the Neal Adams of this generation. What an amazing artist and storyteller.
DOUCHE: And therein is Johns’ greatest strength. In all of the buildup titles he exhibited the ability to write concise moments with heart that honored the rich backgrounds of these characters, while still offering monumental scenes of intergalactic grandeur. And as much as I loved the distinct moments, like Sue and Ralph, and the conversation between the Atlantians, what truly blew me away is just how epic this set-up is. The sheer magnitude of the number of black rings swarming through space is mind blowing. If you really want an enemy gone, you kill them. How the fuck do you stop an endless army that is already dead?
PROF: I agree. This series plays to all of Johns' strengths. If he actually succeeds in a payoff that is worth the buildup, then he should probably just hang it up and walk away because he may not ever be able to top it. In a sense, he looks to be using the horror of the Black Lanterns to actually drive home the importance of these lost characters to the tapestry of the DC Universe over the years, rather than simple shock effect. And I use the word tapestry very consciously because that's the beauty of a single comic book like this that weaves so many separate and discrete aspects of this universe into beautifully cohesive whole. Rather than diminishing what's come before, I found this story to render meaning to deaths and incidents that I previously saw as arbitrary or capricious. Johns embraces the massive and crushing continuity of DC and presents snippets of flashback info just enough to get any reader up to speed as to who the players are and why they are here.
DOUCHE: There is one point of Johns’ retconning I do have issue with. Apparently Damage’s naval cavity (which I guess is his stomach) is his deformation now. Why he’s still covering his face is a mystery to me though.
PROF: That's hilarious!!! I didn't catch that.
In truth, though, what I appreciate about Johns when he tackles things like this is that he generally doesn't "retcon" but makes an honest attempt to accept what has gone before and redirect it towards something new. And part of that process, as seen in BLACKEST NIGHT and his entire run on GREEN LANTERN, is to introduce new elements into the continuity that enhance rather than diminish what has gone before.
For an example, something that I've noticed has been latched onto by the haters this week is the fact that the Black Lanterns originate from Space Sector 666. Sure, that clobbers the reader over the head with evil implications but it is not so hackneyed as it might otherwise be. Over the last couple of years, Johns has been laying groundwork for BLACKEST NIGHT; he has established a spiritual and prophetic nature to the event in that it was foreseen millennia ago and written down in The Bible of the Guardians. In other words, within this context, the 666 connotation may have originated BECAUSE of the prophecies from Oa and bled into the shared consciousness of sentient brings throughout the universe so that 666 becomes somehow intertwined with the worst of evil and death and destruction....The Apocalypse. 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."
Prof. Challenger is illustrator and "Renaissance Man" Keith Howell who is married with two kids, a dog and a cat. Headquartered in the Republic of Texas, he has a glorious ability to annoy people, the strength of ten men, and sometimes updates his website at


Rich Johnson: Writer Eric J: Artist IDW Publishing: Publisher Vroom Socko and Matt Adler: Companions

MATT: Alright, Vroom, you should probably kick this off, since you're our resident Doctor Who expert.
VROOM: You know what? Why don't you start. This is an oddball book, and I really don't know where to begin.
MATT: I think you just did! I agree this is a very strange book. The author, Rich Johnston of Lying in the Gutters and Bleeding Cool fame, said he made it intentionally hard to read because he wanted the reader to "work a little" and he certainly succeeded at that. Unfortunately, I think he was a little too clever by half. One of the major goals of any comic has to be an enjoyable reading experience, and if it becomes too much like work, it's no longer fun. I was eventually able to piece together the narrative (I think), but by that time my basic feeling was "who cares?"
You'd need a really spectacular and insightful story to make it worth that level of work, and while the story is perfectly fine, it's not ground-breaking enough to warrant the baffling structure. Still, I have to give him credit for trying something new.
VROOM: Really, the book has a cool concept to it, one that works to interesting effect. If I had to describe the plot in brief, The Doctor is asked to investigate a murder aboard a space station, committed by a member of the Counter Family. These aliens actually experience their lifespan in reverse. Essentially, their perception of life is akin to one super-tactile viewing of “Memento”. This gives The Doctor quite a challenge in attempting an interrogation, and naturally everything ends up going all timey-wimey. I suppose we should just be grateful that The Doctor doesn't end up singing “The Boy With The Thorn in His Side”.
While I do agree that the actual foundation to the story could and ought to have been stronger, I actually like the fact that it was something I had to work to read, something that took time and effort. At four bucks for an issue, I don't want to be able to flit through the damn thing in five minutes then set it aside.
MATT: I think that's a valid point, but to me, it's really about the payoff. I think back to something like Christopher Priest's run on BLACK PANTHER, which was another comic that played around with narrative structure, with lots of non-linear storytelling. Yet there, the payoff was never simply a murder mystery, it was usually about uncovering what kind of Byzantine plot the Black Panther had set in motion, while everyone else in the story runs around in a tizzy, being manipulated like chess pieces, so that when you finally did piece the story together, you got an "Aha!" moment. I never got that here. I did think it was an interesting concept that everything the alien did was in reverse, so nothing was quite what it seemed, but still, I missed that "Aha!" feeling.
I think another problem I had with it is that all the revelations unfolded in an expository style (however convoluted), which tends to drain all the drama out of it. The Doctor knows from the start that things aren't what they seem, and he just has to figure out a way to talk to the alien so he can get the explanation out of him. It's a nice intellectual exercise, but there were no moments of real suspense or doubt, which to me is essential to a good mystery. The art didn't serve to add to the drama or tension either. It was competent, but unremarkable.
VROOM: I'd actually say that the artwork WAS remarkable. Remarkably unnerving, that is. You can see it most apparently in the first and last page, but the way that artist Eric J draws eyes in close-up is...unsettling.
My major gripe with the book is not with the conversational nature of the story, but that there's no real follow-up to the events that the conversation illuminates. Yes, The Doctor has a cool conversation that's both challenging and fun to read, but that's it. The conversation reveals a threat to the space station, but he does nothing about it. The people on the station are quarantining themselves against a massive plague, but nothing is done about that either. The whole of the book, then, is focused on the concept. As I said, I enjoyed the concept immensely, but if you want to have a good story, there needs to be more to it than that.
MATT: Hmm, well, I do see what you mean about the eyes, there's an almost manic quality to them. However, the alien looks so cute and cuddly, you just know he could never be a murderer.
As for the plague and the impending attack on the space station, I guess I have to say that's one thing that actually DIDN'T bother me. To me, they were MacGuffins, which Alfred Hitchcock defined as the thing (or things) which the characters in the story are concerned with (such as a plague or invasion) but aren't really the point of the story. In other words, they're mainly used to drive the story forward to its conclusion.
In this case, the plague is used simply to provide some misdirection (i.e. maybe the alien killed the guard because the guard was trying to stop him from spreading the plague) and the invasion is used to impel the alien to draw Doctor Who into the story. The main point of the story is to trying to make sense of the alien's motivations and actions, and once we do, we see he is a sympathetic figure.
But it could just as easily have been some other piece of misdirection (maybe we would be led to believe the alien was stealing something), or some other reason for the alien trying to contact Doctor Who (maybe his own race would have been in need of help). None of that would have mattered; it all would have simply served as a launching point for unraveling the mystery.
So, I don't think there's anything wrong with using those as MacGuffins, but in general, the main point of your story SHOULD be more engaging/intriguing than the MacGuffin itself. For instance, in a Hitchcock movie, the characters might be chasing after some valuable object, but the chase itself, and what happens along the way, is so thrilling, that it doesn't matter what the object is. We didn't quite get anything here that overshadowed the MacGuffins in a truly dramatic or compelling way, which may be why you were left feeling "what about the invasion or the plague?" If the story had achieved its goal, you might have only given them a passing thought.
VROOM: Right. The point of the story isn't that James Mason is smuggling a roll of microfilm full of government secrets out of the country, but that Cary Grant is on the run for his life.
The thing is, though, when you're dealing with a concept-based story that features an established character, you'd better be as true to that character as possible. I just can't see The Doctor walking away from those sorts of dire threats. If it were the William "You-can't-rewrite-history-not-one-line" Hartnell version, I'd probably buy it. Hell, there'd be a way for me to buy it from any Doctor up through Sylvester McCoy. But with David Tennant, I just can't accept that he's not going to do anything. Because the type of Doctor that he is, there's no way that HE would accept that he couldn't do anything. In nearly every other aspect, he’s in-character, but for The Doctor to leave these people to their fate without so much as an, “I’m sorry. I’m so very, very sorry.” just feels off.
MATT: You know, I had wondered about that. But I'm really not that familiar with Doctor Who, so I just sort of shrugged and assumed that was typical for the character, that he was one of those cosmic "what will be will be" types, above concerns such as the fate of mortal life, aside from matters of scientific interest. I guess it's also possible that he was pissed with them for basically executing an innocent guy, and decided to let them reap the consequences, but you'd know better than I whether that would be out of character as well.
So, the way the character is drawn here, he's basically "on model" for one of the particular Doctor Who actors? Interesting. I guess I hadn't even thought about that. When they do Star Trek comics, of course there's only one model for each of the established characters; I'm having trouble thinking of another licensed property where there are a wide variety of visual models to choose from. I wonder if they've ever done James Bond comics?
They have, but they were based on the original Ian Fleming source material, so he basically looked the way he was described in the novels.
Wait, what were we talking about again?
MATT: Aaaand... that's probably as good a signal as any that it's time to wrap this review up. Any parting thoughts, Vroom?
VROOM: There's some decent dialogue and a cool idea to be found in this issue. It's just a shame that there wasn't a quality story to be had as well. But I do applaud the effort. And you?
MATT: Surprisingly, that's basically my assessment as well. I guess we weren't so far apart after all!
In most places, Matt Adler goes by the name his mother gave him, but occasionally uses the handle "CylverSaber", based on a character he created for the old DARK FORCES II: JEDI KNIGHT game (one telling hint of his overweening nerddom). He currently does IT and networking support for the government of Nassau County, NY, but his dream is to write for a living, and is in the process of figuring out how to get publishers to give his stuff a look. In the meantime, he passes the time by writing for AICN, CBR, and a few other places. He also formerly wrote for MARVEL SPOTLIGHT magazine.
While wandering the streets of Portland, Oregon, Vroom Socko tends to go by the name of Aaron Button. He also tends to wander while carrying a bag of Jelly Babies and wearing a 15 foot long scarf. He is not currently in therapy, but it might not be a bad idea if he were…


Writer: Dan Slott & Christos Gage Art: Khoi Pham Publisher: Marvel Comics Reviewer: steverodgers

MIGHTY AVENGERS was just hanging on as a comic to pick up, and generally the last in my pile to read. I found the first couple of issues by Dan Slott to be clunky with sub-par art that made it almost unreadable; it was only blind faith in Slott’s ability to bring out the marvel in Marvel comics that kept me buying.
Last issue’s fun throw down between an unraveling yet confident Pym and a snotty Mr. Fantastic finally got this comic jumping again. This issue continues to pick up steam with general zaniness from the unique mélange of super heroes that make up MIGHTY AVENGERS, and keeps the Kirby crackle crackling by introducing the long dormant, forgotten and angry former king of the Inhumans.
The other major improvement is that the art has picked up as well, with confident action drawn by Khoi Pham, who also does nice Maguire-esque facial expressions that match up beautifully with the dialogue. A shout-out must also be giving to scripter Christos Gage, who I can only assume is responsible for the witty punch to the proceedings as scripter.
It is always nice to be rewarded for having faith in a comic and watch a book move back up to the top of the pile. If you felt underwhelmed by MIGHTY in the past, this is a great issue to check in with, as Slott seems to be hitting his stride; throw in some general Pym looniness (his new costume is wonderfully absurd), a hilarious sight gag with Quicksilver, a new Galactus -level threat and the life of the party that is USAgent, and you got yourself a solid book that’s getting better all the time.


Story by: John Wagner Art by: Carlos Ezquerra Published by: 2000 AD Reviewed by: Baytor

Pop culture is littered with the remains of failed revivals. It’s always tough to go home again, because you not only have to compete with the past, but with people’s memory of the past. Even when you succeed commercially, you often have to deal with a horde of angry fanboys that feel you betrayed their childhood. I’ve only discovered STRONTIUM DOG a few years back, so I can’t speak to the memories of the past, but I can say that the Wagner & Ezquerra have, after the misguided attempt to revamp the series with “The Kreeler Conspiracy”, managed to slip back into their old groove in this volume.
For those of us on the left side of the Atlantic, Johnny Alpha was a mutant bounty hunter (nicknamed Strontium Dogs) with X-Ray eyes who faced discrimination wherever he went and used a variety of hi-tech weaponry to collect his bounties. 2000AD stupidly killed off Johnny Alpha some years back and attempted to replace him with a punk Wolverine wannabe, which, predictably, didn’t work out. Realizing their mistake, they’ve now returned the book to an earlier point in the Continuity before they started killing everyone off with alarming frequency.
One of the great things about Johnny Alpha is his family history, which has long been a good breeding ground for the vilest of villains. Chief among them is his father, who attempted to exterminate all of mutantkind on Earth. In this volume he’s joined by his half-brother, who is attempting a power grab in the wake of the kidnapping of King Clarkie II. While not my favorite of the five tales in this volume, it does provide a context for the proceedings that prevents the book from degenerating into a series of non-consequential bounty hunts.
And bounty hunts are what STRONTIUM DOG is all about. There are two absolute corkers in this volume: “The Heady Foot Job” and “Shaggy Dog Story”. Both clock in under 40 pages, which I think is the ideal length for a 2000AD story, whose short installments require almost constant cliff-hangers and unexpected twists. Get much past six parts and it starts getting tedious (unless you’re telling an epic story like “Traitor”). “The Heady Foot Job” starts off as a jail break story then smartly turns into outright farce, and I say smartly because the plot twist is obvious to everyone but a single character and its great fun to watch him get exactly what he deserves. Even better is “Shaggy Dog Story”, which sees our Dogs in pursuit of a Plastic Man wannabe, which is complicated at every turn by the perpetual untruths told by fellow bounty hunter, Shaggy. And if the mid-story trip to a barber doesn’t make you smile, then you’re dead inside. Of note is the presence of Carlos Ezquerra, who has illustrated most of Johnny’s adventures (although he wisely opted out of his death story). American fans might know him from his collaborations with Garth Ennis (cue Talkback bitching about how much THE BOYS sucks), but this guy has been kicking around 2000AD since the start and he does his usual out-standing job drawing the ridiculous and grotesque mutants that populate the book. This volume is a slightly modernized throw-back to the story telling style of the 70s and early 80s, and his artwork is the perfect expression of that. It’s a bit slicker than his earlier work, but not so much that it loses the original flavor.
For anyone curious about STRONTIUM DOG, this is a great volume to check out; not only providing an easy-to-understand history of the character, but showing off a the sort of fun-filled, action-packed stories that made Johnny Alpha the second most popular character in 2000AD’s stable. And to John Wagner who has stated in that he’s doing his best to rectify the mistake he made in killing off Johnny Alpha: mission accomplished.


Writers: Paul Dini with Marc Andreyko Artists: Dustin Nguyen with Georges Jeanty Publisher: DC Comics Reviewed by Humphrey Lee

I honestly don't know how it's possible, what with how much he has contributed Bat-Universe wise for lord knows how long now going back through the Animated Series, but it honestly feels like Paul Dini's contribution to Bat-comics has really gone under the radar the past couple years. I assume it's because all he's done has been to tell straightforward detective stories or to write good characterization or reinvigorate shaky villains like he did with Hush and so on that he just hasn't set the internet on fire with his run on DETECTIVE COMICS. How dare he not tell muddled stories involving Bruce Wayne on heroin before executing him in yet another over-hyped Event Comic! Rabble Rabble Rabble! Here we are though, a new Batman, a new title for Dini and his partner in crime Dustin Nguyen to strut their stuff on while playing second fiddle to something more hype friendly. Are they going to continue to just tell boring old character driven stories involving Batman's cavalcade of schizo villains, or will they cave and try and mimic all that is more hyperbolic?
Nah, they're just going to continue to tell kick ass stories set in the cesspit that is Gotham City, especially a Gotham City that has seen much more activity from its more despicable elements in the wake of BATTLE FOR THE COWL. Now, the first issue was a little bit of a mishmash I think. There was some really good re-invigoration of one of the Bat's sort of mid-tier villains in the Firefly becoming a much bigger and somewhat more disturbing threat, but on the whole I think maybe the issue jumped around the bit. This follow up, though, is a lot tighter. The new team of Batman and Robin are a lot more in the mix which focuses the chaos better as it hones in on the chaos that torchy one let loose on the city at the end of last month's tale. Stakes become higher all around as lots of other players start pulling themselves into the mix, lots of dangerous individuals as Black Mask and Zsasz show up during Firefly's antics, and Hush, now fully decked out as Bruce Wayne mind you, escapes to knock things way more over on the hellacious side.
The main thing that I think I like this book for is that it's more willing to jump into the fray than the others now that "Batman: Reborn" is in effect. Since both Morrison's pet project and BATMAN itself are running more emotionally right now, and understandably so given the circumstances, I just like that at least one of the books is taking the time to realize that the city of Gotham is hell in a hand basket right now from all the usual players and isn't calming down anytime soon. And as we all know, Dini's grasp on the Bat's Rogue Gallery is honestly probably second to none out of everyone working on one of these books right now. He's just that good at piling on the mess that is now Dick Grayson's life now that the city is under his protection. Sure, I wouldn't mind a quiet moment of reflection thrown in there from time to time to show how Dick is getting through this period of his life without Bruce, but BATMAN & ROBIN, despite my reservations about Morrison's previous Bat work, is doing a bang up job in that regard, so why use more panel time on it here unless it really is necessary to drive home a plot thread or deepen a particular moment? If this book is to be the "All Ass-Kicking Extravaganza" then so be it. I can't think of a better team for it given what Dini and Nguyen were outputting before this mass relaunch of the Bat-verse.
Now, to talk about this book on whole, given the back up story in the back, I for one am all on board with this, but I can see how this book may get passed over even more because of said back matter. As a full supporter of Marc Andreyko's MANHUNTER book and character, I'm so glad to see that Kate Spencer has a place in any book out there, especially one that has a banner on it that people will buy pretty much no matter what and get exposed to her. But, on the other hand, the confines of back-up space kind of limit her down to one dimension - the lawyer/masked vigilante one - and probably aren't going to hook anyone not familiar with her previous book and thus probably cost this book some sales given the extra dollar they have to pay for something they really don't have an opportunity to appreciate. Without the family aspect of her son and all the wonderful side characters that really drove MANHUNTER itself home - Cameron Chase, Dylan the tech sidekick, Obsidian, Director Bones – causes it to lose all the fun interactivity that made the book itself so great, and that makes these follow up tales a little more by the numbers. Hopefully Andreyko can find a way to rotate all of the crew back in and make this something new readers will want to pay that extra buck for - and bless DC for actually giving readers something for that extra dollar - but until then I think it's going to be more of a support thing from guys like me that remember the good old days, or the diehards that will throw any amount of money each month at a book with the name of their favorite character on it.
I'm just glad that already it looks like this book has hit its stride, at least from the main aspect of the book. We know the characters are going to be depicted as they should, its just a matter of seeing how Dini makes some relevant and pushes the envelope on what our new Dynamic Duo are going to have tossed at them after seeing what he put the original through. I wouldn't mind seeing this book becoming an interacting point for some other DCU alums to pop in and out of as well, like how we'd get some Zatanna sightings and whatnot during Dini's DETECTIVE run so we can see their take on this new situation Gotham has found itself in and third person insight on how Dick and Damien are handling it. As for now though, at least we know we have another Bat-book and creative team we can rely on to deliver month in and month out. And with this ringing in of the new and a little of the out with the old, maybe this time around they'll get a little more notice instead of taking a backseat to the other, more-hyped Bat-books despite their quietly rivaling, if not outright trumping them, like they were before.
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.


Written and Illustrated by Various Publisher: Villard Reviewer: Liam ‘The Kid’

Note: ‘The Kid’ is 8 years old and has been doing reviews on his own site since August of 2008. And you can now follow the kid’s daily ‘adventures’ on Twitter.
I really like reading the FLIGHT books because they have a lot of short stories by different writers and artists all in one big book. Most of the stories are really good and they’re all different from each other. Some of the stories can be funny or scary. Some stories have a lot of action in them and some are just crazy. Not all of the stories in FLIGHT are good. There are some that I think are pretty boring or the art doesn’t look that great but mostly everything is really good. My favorite FLIGHT book is FLIGHT: EXPLORER. That had the best stories in it, I think. Pretty much all of them were really good.
I got to read the new FLIGHT book, VOLUME SIX, ahead of time which is pretty cool and this is another really good collection. I like getting the advance copies of books before everyone else. After the San Diego Comic Convention I’ll be able to review a book called THE COMPLETE VADER which is totally awesome but it isn’t a comic book. But there is going to be a lot of cool STAR WARS and FLIGHT stuff at the Comic Con so people should go check it out. I’m just going to review a few of my favorite stories from this book but there were only maybe one or two bad ones that I didn’t like.
“The Excitingly Mundane Life of Kenneth Shuri” is tied for my favorite story. It’s about a guy who wants to get a job as a ninja. Actually he already is a ninja but he can’t find a job and he’s really depressed that he has no money and has to take on different jobs that he doesn’t like. The best part of the story is when Ken the ninja has to take on a ton of other ninja warriors for a job. It’s a huge battle in the office building with a lot of action and crazy death scenes. The story looks more like a cartoon than some of the other realistic type of comic book art but that style makes it better. If it was drawn realistic it would probably look way too bloody. It is a funny story though and I liked how the writer ends this one.
“Epitaph” by Phil Craven was the shortest story in the book. I liked how it seemed like the story was taking place in outer space or something and the characters find a dead body. I thought for sure that it was going to end up being some monster story with the space guys getting chased around the whole time but it was a lot simpler than that. I liked what the guys did with the body near the end of the story, too.
“Kidnapped” by Rad Sechrist was probably my favorite story. One Samurai warrior’s girlfriend or wife was kidnapped and he’s fighting another warrior to save her. There is a lot of good action in the book and the art is really nice. It takes place in the woods in the winter time so there is a lot of snow and trees around them as they’re fighting. Both of the warriors are really tough and they keep fighting even with arrows shot into them and stuff. My favorite part of the story was the ending because it’s a trick ending. For a minute I thought that one warrior won but it was really just a fake out. Once I figured out what really happened it made the story even better.
“The Zs and the Attack of the Early Birds” by Richard Pose is more of a story for kids. A little boy is going to go fishing with his dad and has to go to bed early so he isn’t tired. Even the teddy bear tells him to go to sleep but the little boy says he wants to go look for worms instead and goes off on an adventure with the teddy bear following him. There are cool parts with the little boy getting attacked by the early bird for stealing the bird’s worms and then the army of the Zs goes after the boy and the bear. They all want him to sleep and he just wants to get away. I think the early bird was really funny. He just shouts and yells at the boy for everything he does. He’s such an angry bird. It’s a good story that is a lot of fun because of how the boy doesn’t like going to bed and the sleep monsters try and attack him to make him sleep.
There are a lot of other stories in this book that I liked like “Fish N Chips” and “Jellaby” and those two were in other FLIGHT books, as well. These were my four favorite, though. I like reading super hero comics like SPIDER-MAN and DEADPOOL but sometimes it’s fun to read a bunch of different shorter stories like they have in FLIGHT.
Rating: 9/10


Writer: Mark Sable Art: Julian Totino Tedesco Publisher: Boom! Studios Reviewer: Mr. Pasty

What happens when every doomsday scenario the government contracted you to predict starts coming true? Why, you get yourself a good alibi and try to stop the person (or persons) behind such a dastardly deed. That’s the premise behind UNTHINKABLE, a taut thriller that follows a bookworm and his braniac buddies as they pursue a group of global terrorists hell-bent on destroying the world – using handy step-by-step instructions that were designed to prevent such a scenario rather than create it.
Fans of the hit television show 24 or Grishamites will be right at home here. Like most political pressure cookers, UNTHINKABLE moves at a very brisk pace with little time for digestion. Solving one crisis just leads to another. A majority of comics adhere to a basic story arc – UNTHINKABLE just flat out ignores it. In fact, forget the arc. This story follows a straight line like it was shot from a rail gun. How else can the protagonist go from a sacrifice at the Temple Mount to the Large Hadron Collider in less than two pages? Ordinarily that kind of bravado can breed contempt for the writer, but Sable is skilled enough to avoid any grandstanding with his characters. When it makes sense to them, it makes sense to us. A large part of that success comes from Sable’s effectiveness in balancing both dialogue and exposition without interrupting the considerable pace or the suspense that pace establishes in the opening pages.
Tedesco compliments that pace by bringing this word to life (and death). Colors are desaturated and often indistinguishable in almost every frame, muted by overtones of brown and blue. You can argue there’s an overreliance of mood here, but the panels are masterfully arranged, overlapping and hurried into place in conjunction with the tension of the narrative. It’s really handled quite beautifully and one of those subtle and unfortunately overlooked contributions that can really elevate a book.
RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK is mentioned a few times here and the film’s influence is readily apparent. The pessimist in me thought it might have been a cheap way to justify all the jet-setting across exotic locales, but I felt better after seeing the grainy map with a broken red line to indicate travel between Cairo and Jerusalem. The characters may not turn and wink at you every so often, but Sable does. While I won’t call it lighthearted, those random nuggets keep the tone of this book just above sea level. There are some heavy duty themes presented here including torture, terrorism and government conspiracies. With everything that’s happening to our soldiers and the economy, trying to broach the subject of Armageddon requires a delicate hand. Sable has the chops to get it done and he didn’t have to pin a yellow ribbon to the Mylar sleeve to do it. Conversely, he doesn’t make light of the ills of the world and that makes UNTHINKABLE an intriguing and unique look at what people might or might not do when the evils of our world can no longer be viewed from a safe distance. True, this instrument only plays one note, but when you can play it as beautifully as UNTHINKABLE can, one is all you need. A must-buy.
Final word: If the end of the world is indeed upon us, make sure you add UNTHINKABLE to the collection of reading materials inside your fallout shelter.


Writer: Nathan Edmondson Art: Christian Ward Publisher: Image Comics Reviewer: Matt Adler

I read the first issue of this miniseries when it came out, and honestly, I didn’t feel the need to follow the story any further. The first issue seemed like a lot of effort from first time comic book creators--full of energy and enthusiasm, immensely impressed with its own cleverness, but without any clear idea of how to sell the reader on the notion that this is a story worth following among the dozens of other options on the shelves each month. So I forgot about it, like I have so many other first issues.
But recently I was given the opportunity to read the second and third issues, and here is where the book gets its footing. That’s not an excuse, of course; if you’re doing a 4 issue miniseries, you’ve got to have a strong start out of the gate, but hopefully the creators have learned that lesson for their next endeavor. That aside, we now have the makings of an interesting story. Whereas the first issue was little more than a generic super-powered battle (with art that was a bit hard to follow), the story now becomes about a global quest to stop a mythological figure from destroying the very myths that control the natural world.
The main characters are the legendary Gemini twins Castor and Pollux, who in this story (set in the modern day) are agents of Zeus tasked with policing the various figures of mythology and making sure they don’t interfere in our world. At this point in time, the gods have adopted a hands-off policy towards the world (quite in contrast to the original myths, when Zeus was pulling the old “Hey babe, wanna see my lightning bolt?” on every mortal woman he could get his mitts on). So Castor and Pollux become enforcers of this policy, and violators get sent straight to Hell. Well, Hades. As in the original myths, Castor and Pollux are only half-immortal, therefore having to spend half their time in Hades being, well, dead (they accomplish this on New Year’s Eve through a ritual suicide/homicide of one another, which they seem to find quite fun). They are then resurrected every other year to perform missions for Zeus.
In practice, the twins are not exactly tough guys or ultra-cool secret agents; it’s more like Frank and Joe Hardy meet Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Castor is basically Joe, the more impulsive, vivacious one (and quite a ladies’ man) while Pollux fulfills the role of the more serious, level-headed Frank. They take their marching orders from their Bosley-like handler “Didi”, who appears to be some mythological character or other, but I can’t place him.
The mission that really kicks off the series is the escape of an ancient foe from the depths of Hades. Technically, this was set up in the first issue, but only at the very end, with most of the pages in that issue being given to a mostly irrelevant chase and fight scene. Now we actually learn the nature of the threat; it is Pelops, who was famously served up for dinner by his father to the Gods, and was eventually regurgitated and reassembled. But it seems the reassembly didn’t go so well; Pelops is in constant pain. The central conceit here (and it’s not one I’m aware of from the myths, so I think it is the invention of the author) is that being cooked by his father literally set his blood to boiling, and he hasn’t cooled down yet, which is the primary source of his agony. Presumably this drove him mad, hence why he was imprisoned in Hades. To alleviate his suffering, he’s set out to murder three of the Four Seasons, leaving only Winter alive so he can cool down. As of this issue, he’s 2 for 3, and only Summer is left.
The art is very interesting. It’s done primarily in a watercolor style, with some digital manipulation worked in; lots of hazy lines, and bizarre, abstract representations of scenes and figures. It gives the story a dreamy quality, which both fits its mythological nature and provides a nice offset to the more mundane suspense/thriller aspects. Consistency and clarity of form frequently elude this style, so it is occasionally unclear and a little difficult to follow, but in the end, it’s so pretty, you don’t really mind stopping to try and decipher what’s being depicted.
I do wonder how difficult it is for a writer to script for this sort of style; my understanding is that the writer and artist didn’t know each other at all before starting this project, and you have to wonder if any key points wind up lost when the team hasn’t had that chance to hone their creative rapport. Still, all in all, this miniseries is shaping up to be a strong first effort from these creators, and if they can look at themselves critically, see where the flaws were in this series, and work to improve on it, they’ll have a bright future ahead of them.


Writer: Robin Furth Artist: Tony Shasteen Publisher: Del Rey Comics Reviewed by: Andrew Goletz

The debut issue of the debut book from the new line of Del Rey Comics is a pretty big deal. Not only will this special 0 issue be given away free to those who stop by the Del Rey booth (Booth 1129) during the San Diego Comic Con but the story serves as a prequel to the series which is an adaptation of the novel by King and Straub. Furth is no stranger to comic book adaptations of King’s work, having already plotted THE DARK TOWER: THE GUNSLINGER REBORN from Marvel Comics. Shasteen’s most recent project was DC’s FINAL CRISIS: SECRET FILES but I’m pretty unfamiliar with his work.
The zero issue introduces us to all of the major players, including young Jack Sawyer and Morgan Sloat, but particular attention is paid to Jack’s father Phil who is featured on the cover. Those of you familiar with the novel know of Phil’s ultimate fate but this issue focuses on what happened prior to that. Jack is a young boy who wants to be around his dad with every opportunity he has but Phil’s job apparently makes it so those opportunities are few and far between. When Jack sees his father go out to the garage, he follows behind to catch up with him but the father has already disappeared into the other realm.
The rest of the story focuses on the other realm where ‘Prince Philip’ is having words with Morgan Sloat. Fans of THE TALISMAN undoubtedly know that Morgan is bad news and his duplicity is made known right off the bat. Hints are given as to what has caused the tension between Philip and Morgan both in the real world and the other world. The mysterious Talisman is mentioned but its whereabouts and the effects of its power are at this point unknown. I found the finale of the book to be extremely well done. The main event occurs in our world with the action taking place simultaneously in the other world with the ramifications of that moment leading to the ongoing story beginning this Fall.
The strength of the book is clearly in the writing. Furth keeps the story moving without spending too much time on one particular character or setting. The dialogue is sharp and poignant, especially in the brief scenes with Jack and his father. The art seems a bit uneven in places. With Sloan in particular I can’t tell whether he is drawn a certain way to set a darker tone or whether he is just drawn poorly. There are a few examples where the dimensions seem a bit off and the storytelling comes off a bit flat because of it. Having seen the colored version of the book as well (and the last page of this issue features a color page) I do believe that it was the black and white art which did the disservice to Shasteen’s pencils. Most of the issues I did have with the art were nonexistent in the fully colored version. Another bonus of the colored book is that readers can see the beautiful work by Nei Ruffino. Like I said, you get a glimpse of it on the final page of this issue but Ruffino has chosen an interesting color palate on which to draw from and the results are amazing to look at. I also have to give props to the cover by Massimo Carnevale. Massimo will be doing the covers for the entire run and I think it was a great choice.
If the purpose of this special issue is to get people interested in the concept it definitely achieves that. From the front cover to the last page this is a quality effort by everyone involved and I’m anxious to read this team’s adaptation of the novel.

superhero talks with TANK GIRL’s Alan C. Martin!

Hey, it’s superhero. As most of you know by now…I’m pretty much a whore for anything TANK GIRL. You can see my two reviews for Titan Book’s CREAM OF TANK GIRL and the TANK GIRL REMASTERED editions here and here. So you can imagine how freaking excited I was to be able to submit a couple of questions to one of the co-creators of TG, Mister Alan C. Martin. Along with Jamie Hewlett, Martin was responsible for bringing us all everyone’s favorite apocalyptic survivor…next to Mad Max, that is.
You can check out all the current workings of Tank Girl here.
So, without further ado let’s get to the good stuff…
superhero: Have you always been a fan of comics? If so, what are some of your favorite books? Can you remember the first comic that you read? Were you always interested in writing comics?

Alan C. Martin (ACM): I've never really been a big comic reader. I read all the usual stuff growing up in Britain in the 1970s - BATTLE, WARLORD, ACTION, 2000ad etc. but never progressed on to reading much DC or Marvel. In my teens I became more interested in subcultures and all the mediums they employed, so I did get into some Anarchy comics and, through, my love of the hippie era, The fabulous Furry Freak Brothers and Zap comic. These days the only thing that can hold my attention is Daniel Clowes. It was never my plan to write comics, I was more into pulling things (old radios, cereal packets) to pieces and recycling them back into something different. I guess that's what my writing style is - homogenized rubbish!

superhero: According to THE CREAM OF TANK GIRL the original Tank Girl image was a sort of throwaway illustration-a bit different than what the actual character became. Do you remember why you went about the redesign? Why did you decide to change her?

ACM: There was no redesign as that original picture was never really designed in the first place. All the women Jamie drew at that time looked like that. The style of his drawing and the style of his characters were changing very rapidly in those early days, so when TANK GIRL finally came to print, she was just the epitome of Jamie's style at that moment. Conscious decisions to change her look didn't come about until much later on.

superhero: How did you come to the realization that TANK GIRL should be the property that you should primarily focus on? Did you just like the idea or was it just that TANK GIRL just caught on immediately?

ACM: Again, there was no realization, it went crazy the moment it was published, we just had to try and keep hold of the reins. We didn't have many other strong characters at that point anyway; TANK GIRL was the big boiling pot for all our most outlandish ideas.

superhero: Can you talk a bit about your process for putting a TANK GIRL story together? Were there any banned substances involved in your work ethic?

ACM: The story would usually arise out of an all-day session in the pub, so we'd get some really stupid, cranky plot together in our inebriated state and let that fester for a few days. Then the print deadline would start to loom scarily close, so we'd stay up for three or four days and do the whole strip in one go. I'd be writing maybe a page or two ahead of Jamie and I'd stop to help with Letratone and inking. I think that's why all the work seems so zesty still - it has an immediate energy to it that came directly from the way it was put together.

superhero: At what point did you understand that TANK GIRL was actually gaining a rather large following? How did it feel to have a character achieve a certain cult figure status?

ACM: There was no one point, there was the initial impact and then it grew slowly from there. I can remember being at Glastonbury Festival in the early 90s and seeing literally thousands of TANK GIRL t-shirts, a lot of which I had designed, that took my breath away, I knew we had become ingrained in the culture.

superhero: I found it interesting that in THE CREAM OF TANK GIRL you seem to state that at one point you were getting frustrated with other people’s perceptions of the character. Can you talk a bit about that? How did you see her?

ACM: Again, no particular one point. That happened from day one until the movie came out and it still happens today with the new stuff. We were always frustrated with people telling us what TANK GIRL was, a lot of people thought that their own particular take on her was all that she was about. We made a point of never defining her, TANK GIRL was and is whoever happens to be working on her at the time.

superhero: In the book it seems as if there came a time where you and Hewlett got tired of the character. Can you address that at all?

ACM:> I guess what we were really getting tired of was defending ourselves all the time against people who wanted to appropriate our creation. It kind of takes the fun out of it and it leaves the work flat and empty.

superhero: How were you approached about the film? Did you have any ideas of how the TANK GIRL strip would work as a film? At what point did you realize that the movie was going horribly wrong?

ACM: The movie was a long time coming, it had been discussed from very early on, but it wasn't until Rachel (Talalay, producer of John Waters’s CRY BABY and the original HAIRSPRAY movie) started toting the idea around Hollywood that anything started to happen. We didn't really know how it would work; we were used to writing it in short, eight page bursts, so to string it out into a feature length film was beyond our imaginings. I knew it was going to be crap the moment I saw the script. I just couldn't recognize anything in it as my creation.

superhero: Was the film the final nail in the coffin? Was the movie what made you and Hewlett finally walk away from the character for such a long time?

ACM: Yeah, it's impossible to pull yourself together after such a huge disappointment and carry on as if nothing went wrong.

superhero: How did you decide to come back to TANK GIRL? Why wasn’t Hewlett involved in bringing her back?

ACM: Jamie was involved with THE GIFTING (2007 comeback series) to begin with, he was on board for all the covers and a big chunk of the strips, but the UK publisher that was meant to be putting it out procrastinated for way to long and Jamie had to go off to do Stage Two of Gorillaz. That's why I teamed up with Ashley Wood and took it over to IDW.

superhero: What are your future plans for the character? Any chance of you and Hewlett teaming up on Tank Girl again? Possibly doing an animated TANK GIRL Project ala Hewlett’s Gorillaz work?

ACM: I can't see me and Jamie ever doing any major projects together with TANK GIRL. He does enjoy doing covers, so he'll always be around for that.

superhero: What are you working on outside of TANK GIRL? Are there any other projects you’d like to talk about?

ACM: I'm just starting a new non-TANK GIRL project with Jamie. It's a resurrection of a very old idea of his from the early 90s, but I'm not telling you anything else about it!

superhero: Well, that’s it! Personally, I wish Hewlett and Martin would get to work on and animated short of TANK GIRL just so they could show Hollywood how it really should have been done! But that’s not likely to happen. Still, a TANK GIRL fan can dream, can’t he?

Discovered as a babe in an abandoned comic book storage box and bitten by a radioactive comic fan when he was a teenager, superhero is actually not-so mild mannered sometime designer & cartoonist, Kristian Horn of Los Angeles, California. He's been an @$$hole for three years. Some of his work can be seen at

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

Ad by Prof. Challenger

Remember, if you have a comic book you’d like one of the @$$holes to take a look at, click on your favorite reviewer’s link and drop us an email.

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


Readers Talkback
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  • July 21, 2009, 11:33 a.m. CST

    Always so lonely here

    by Tell_Your_Mom_I_Said_Hi

    Not sure why. Probably that stupid Clone Saga's fault.

  • July 21, 2009, 11:34 a.m. CST

    Tank Girl = reboot

    by CharyouTree

    with Megan Fox

  • July 21, 2009, 11:39 a.m. CST

    A STRONTUM DOG movie

    by CharyouTree

    needs to be made, along with a Sam Slade movie fuck green lantern and aquaman, hopefully the Judge Dredd reboot will help, if it's any good

  • July 21, 2009, 11:41 a.m. CST

    Blackest Night was simply fantastic!

    by HollywoodHellraiser

    I too thought it was going to be simply Zombies looking to eat or kill mindlessly. But gladly I was wrong.<p>Jones knocked it outta the park, easy!

  • July 21, 2009, 11:46 a.m. CST

    No pretty pictures?...just words and words and words...

    by FlickaPoo I missing something?

  • July 21, 2009, 11:46 a.m. CST

    I'm always amazed that comics still exist

    by SoylentMean

    Happy, but still amazed. I mean how in the hell are they still profitable? Last time I checked comics (at least most of 'em) have words in them. Words seem to be the equivalent of garlic to vampires for today's youth. <P> Or, why Transformers 2 is so popular.

  • July 21, 2009, 11:48 a.m. CST

    The fuck?

    by Laserhead

    Wait... it's not... Wednesday...

  • July 21, 2009, 11:49 a.m. CST

    "almost like the universe is facing some final crisis"

    by Laserhead

    Haw. Zing!

  • July 21, 2009, 12:17 p.m. CST

    BLACKEST NIGHT was all right

    by Prof_Ender

    It's just the first issue. And I always reserve judgment until the last page is turned. I'm glad to read a good review of Geoff Johns' work. Most "reviewers" on the web think it's fashionable to beat the guy up for every little thing when they should just sit back and enjoy the ride.

  • July 21, 2009, 12:18 p.m. CST

    Green Lantern has been the best book...

    by Banshee7

    on the shelves for the last two years. Johns is the shit and the art is beautiful. Batman's my favorite character but I look forward to Green Lantern each month more than I do Batman.

  • July 21, 2009, 12:33 p.m. CST

    Simon Pegg is... Johnny Alpha

    by MasterBaytor

    No, really, he is. I had half planned to sneak that factoid into the review but forgot all about it. But if you can track down the Big Finish 2000AD audio plays, Simon Pegg plays everyone's favorite mutant bounty hunter.

  • July 21, 2009, 12:35 p.m. CST

    Blackest Night

    by Mr.FTW

    I too was happy to see that they aren't just zombies but tainted evil versions of the pepole they were when still alive. The whole zombie thing has been done to death, especially recently. There is just way too much of it out there. It's nice to see Johns take a different spin on things than the easy way out of generic zombies.<p> I know there will be some caveat which will allow the good guys to win but how do you stop and army you can't kill because they are already dead and every time they kill on of you it adds to their ranks. If it continues this way with the the set up that has been established and Johns abilities Blackest Night could be the mega event we've been waiting for that that actually makes mega event cool.<p> It doesn't get a lot of mention but Blackest Night could be the best and coolest mega event since the Infinity Gauntlet.

  • July 21, 2009, 12:36 p.m. CST

    I Was Mocking Geoff Johns Before It Was Fashionable

    by MasterBaytor

    Cross-over events after cross-over events, two-bit villains brought back as psychopaths, and endless references to decades old stories. Pretty much everything I don't want in my comic stories. </br></br> But thankfully for his fans, it's been so long since I cared about super-hero comics that I don't go after his books.

  • July 21, 2009, 12:58 p.m. CST

    We know who Geoff Jones is and whats he done..

    by HollywoodHellraiser

    Are you someone special besides having an ego, MB?

  • July 21, 2009, 1:01 p.m. CST

    Actually, the Marvel Zombies are intellegent, too.

    by cookylamoo

    So where's the big difference?

  • July 21, 2009, 1:02 p.m. CST

    Maybe because they can spell Intelligent.

    by cookylamoo

    Sorry about that.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:14 p.m. CST

    The difference?

    by Prof

    The difference between Marvel Zombies and Black Lanterns is the story they're telling and the potential impact upon the mainline continuity. And I got a geeky cool Black Lantern ring to play with.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:22 p.m. CST

    Blackest is the Summer Event

    by shutupfanboy

    Forget everything else, this is going to be the talking about event for the rest of year into 2010.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:23 p.m. CST

    The way to stop the Blackest Night

    by Laserhead

    At the end, or maybe issue #5, Hal Jordan becomes White Lantern. The white light undoes death and restores souls to their bodies.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:25 p.m. CST

    Speaking of Johns

    by Laserhead

    Not infallible, but I love the guy's stuff. HOWEVER... I just picked up Flash:Rebirth 1-3, because I was bored. Holy Shit, that was three of the dullest issues of anything I've read in a loooong time. Still haven't seen any justification for the return of Barry "I Have No Reason to Exist" Allen.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:26 p.m. CST

    I'll reserve judgment.

    by cookylamoo

  • July 21, 2009, 1:27 p.m. CST

    Until I see if Johns comes up with a cop-out ending.

    by cookylamoo

  • July 21, 2009, 1:31 p.m. CST

    No White Lanterns

    by optimous_douche

    Take this for what it’s worth. The only way I got through science in college was by fucking the teacher assistants, so any science geeks please feel free to correct me. <p> When Didio did the Q&A at Wizard World a science geek (sorta) stepped up to the mike and asked why white lanterns were being ignored, what with them being part of the visible spectrum of light.<p> Several people chimed out that light is not a color, but rather the absence of color (or presence – as I said not science oriented and I flip flop black and white all the time in his regard).<p> Dan said that’s right and there will be no white lanterns. Was it a ruse? Who knows?

  • July 21, 2009, 1:32 p.m. CST

    I'm gonna track down those 2000ad audio plays..

    by Righteous Brother

    I fucking love Johnny Alpha. I tell you who looks like Johnny Alpha, Adrian Grenier from Entourage.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:34 p.m. CST

    Laser Flash

    by optimous_douche

    Ya, I was a little miffed they took a snippet of my review for the cover of #2.<p> "Filled with superb moments" becasue I really thought it was. The rest of the sentence goes on to say that "While filled with superb moments the action was lacking."<p> I forgive this though since KICK-ASS holds the current record for completely misconstruing and using one of my reviews out of context.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:36 p.m. CST

    Damnit Prof Stop Rubbing in the Ring

    by optimous_douche

    My LCS only offered me an alternate cover.<p> I passed though since the real cover was 10 times cooler than the alternate.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:44 p.m. CST

    If it turns out to be Hal turning into the White Lantern

    by gooseud

    Allow me to say......meh.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:45 p.m. CST

    Fuck this shit

    by StarchildAD

    Scalped needs to go weekly.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:47 p.m. CST

    White Lanters

    by Mr.FTW

    If they asked the question like that they must have not been much of a rel science geek at all.<p> when you're talking about color it's either pigment or light. With pigment black is the prescence of all color and white is the absence of all color. With light it us the opposite. Black is the abscence of light and white is the precence if every wave lenght of light.<p> That by itself should point to the direction Blackest Night is heading. Since Hal Jordan is a Green Lantern, has worn both blue and red rings already and has been exposed to yellow by Paralax it stands to reason he will at some point be exposed to and control each of the various lantern colors bringing together all of the wave lengths of light to become the only White Lantern in order to defeat the Blackest Night threat.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:49 p.m. CST

    OKAY physics dumbasses...

    by Prof

    *of course I kid with the subject header* White in the physical world is the absence of color. But in terms of the LIGHT spectrum...WHITE is created by combining ALL other colors of light. Anyone who's run light filters for a stage production can tell you what happens when you overlap your red, green, and blue filters. You get white. So, expect the WHITE LANTERN to be the consolidation of all the other colored lanterns into one to take down the Black Lanterns by restoring their souls and probably their lives. And then I suspect, by some glorious mumbo jumbo to end with some sort of assertion that resurrection of the dead is removed from the Universe here on out, thus giving finality to future deaths. Yeah, right! snark. And excuse me while I tongue-kiss my Black Lantern ring.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:51 p.m. CST

    Sorry Mr. FTW

    by Prof

    We were obviously typing away with the same point at the same time, but you won with the posting stamp. :)

  • July 21, 2009, 1:53 p.m. CST

    Adrian Grenier

    by Laserhead

    Nah... you know who he looks like? Jo-Jo the Dog-Faced Boy.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:55 p.m. CST

    Cover for Blackest Night #4

    by Laserhead

    Is a rainbow lay-out that shows Hal Jordan standing stoically awash in every color of the "emotional spectrum." No White Lanterns my ass.<p>Unless he's going to become Rainbow Brite.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:56 p.m. CST

    I am a god among men

    by MasterBaytor

    And I said much the same thing about an hour before on another board where me and Prof hang out (which he commented on shortly before posting here). I'm not sure if his comment was directed at me exactly (and don't care if it is), but the timing of it makes me believe I inspired his comment about reviewers taking fashionable pot shots at Johns.</br></br> But I pretty much was turned off by him straight away. Gave him a few shots, but there aren't many writers who miss my tastes by a larger margin than him.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:58 p.m. CST

    Blackest Night...

    by The Nihilist

    ...will wash away that awful, awful "Final Crisis" taste from our mouths. Did anybody catch the editorial in the free comic book day "Blackest Night" preview where Johns essentially apologized for FC? "Crossover events don't always go perfectly and don't always reach the critical or commercial acceptance we hope for" or something to that effect. Perfect. Take that Grant Morrison, you drugged up hack.

  • July 21, 2009, 1:59 p.m. CST


    by MasterBaytor

    it's revenge for all the anti-Ennis comments I read here :)

  • July 21, 2009, 2:10 p.m. CST


    by Series7

    I really dug the first one, but the second one was all over the place <P>(read my review here:<P> and didn't make a lick of sense. I did not intend on buying the third one, but I had some left over cash at the end and figured I'd stick it out. So hopefully it gets back on track with the third issue, because it was a really cool concept.

  • July 21, 2009, 2:11 p.m. CST

    Sorry Baytor...

    by Prof

    ...I had not read your comments yet. :) I assume you're talking about the 666 thing? That's just the most common kneejerk criticism I noticed last week web-wide. Not you specifically since I already expect you to hate all things Geoff. :D

  • July 21, 2009, 2:13 p.m. CST

    Blackest Night

    by Series7

    My LCS was trying to sell a variant cover for $300. It was the same cover for the main Blackest Night just black and white? Is that really worth that much to someone?

  • July 21, 2009, 2:15 p.m. CST

    Ralph Dibney is dead?

    by rev_skarekroe

    Shows how much attention I've been paying to the DCU.

  • July 21, 2009, 2:18 p.m. CST

    How fucking stupid is this?

    by Laserhead

    I'm sitting here on the web page, with my mouse hovering over 'Proceed to Checkout', actually considering buying either one or both of the G.I.JOE and TRANSFORMERS cartoon mega-sets.<p>I know as soon as it comes I'm gonna watch one episode and think, "Jesus-- I liked this shit? I know I was just a kid, but fuck, I can't watch this. What a ridiculous waste of money." And yet...

  • July 21, 2009, 2:24 p.m. CST

    Don't do it, Laserhead.

    by rev_skarekroe

    Seriously, some childhood loves hold up in adulthood (the original Star Wars, Willy Wonka, Alice Cooper) and some do not (G.I. Joe cartoons, Transformers cartoons, KISS).

  • July 21, 2009, 2:29 p.m. CST

    You're right

    by Laserhead

    It's so damn tempting, though. And at various times I've used money to buy things I always wanted as a kid only to learn that the things I wanted were really, really stupid. Nostalgia's a bitch.<p>I still might buy them.

  • July 21, 2009, 2:32 p.m. CST

    White Lantern, bah!

    by Abelman007

    If Hal becomes a White Lantern, that will be the most easily telegraphed outcome - hopefully something we can't even fathom happens which would = awesome. I'm a big Lantern fan from days past and its pulled me back in. Couldn't handle the various Crises of yore, so I hope this isn't some timeline changing crap confusing the continuity further.

  • July 21, 2009, 2:41 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    Were there Zombie boxing gloves or not?

  • July 21, 2009, 2:43 p.m. CST

    I can't... stop... myself....

    by Joenathan

    Is it rascist to have a big, powerful White Lantern wipe out the hordes of disgusting Black Lanterns... heh...

  • July 21, 2009, 2:45 p.m. CST

    Is Ralph Dibney really dead?

    by Snookeroo

    Or is that stretching it a bit?

  • July 21, 2009, 2:46 p.m. CST


    by Prof

    I hadn't even considered the racial implication of White Lanterns versus Black Lanterns. Surely nobody would be that petty....*snicker*

  • July 21, 2009, 2:48 p.m. CST

    My only complaint about Blackest Night

    by Continentalop

    Is my complaint I have with pretty much any big comic event - how incredibly "small" the comic book universe are. <p> Evil rings of death are traveling the cosmos, some land here and who do they reanimate and possess? Oh, what a coincidence - a dead superhero and his wife. <p> Yes, I know we have an emotional connection with Ralph and his wife which is why it works, and I know that Blackest Night isn't alone in blame about this type of plot device, but man I wish they wouldn't make the comic book universes so incestuous. <p>

  • July 21, 2009, 2:56 p.m. CST

    Just another DC deathfest

    by FuzzyLumpkins

    So, can no one write an engrossing story that doesn't involve heroes dying? Oh, boy! How many are they gonna kill this time?

  • July 21, 2009, 2:59 p.m. CST


    by Mr.FTW

    Dude, what would you want them to do in stead? Resurect a bunch of small, furry purple striped aliens from plante Yazbac in the Florpian system? I don't think that would really sell. Besides Blackhand is in control of the Black Lantern ring/battery/power it only makes sense that he'd resurect a bunch or earth heroes that he is either familier with or knows about. Personally I do wish Johns had focused on maybe Ted Kord, J'onn J'onzz or Kal-L (I'm sure they're coming) than the Dibny's. I can't say I ever cared much for a 3rd or 4th rate stretcher or his wife, that's why Identity Crisis was a total wash for me.

  • July 21, 2009, 2:59 p.m. CST

    My only complaint about Blackest Night

    by Series7

    Why does it gotta be Black? Why do they always gotta bring up color in comics?

  • July 21, 2009, 3:02 p.m. CST

    Death To Everybody

    by MasterBaytor

    I think this had quite a lot to do with me drifting away from super-hero comics. Death can be a really effective narrative force, but how much impact does watching Pantha's head come off her body on the very page she enters the story? How effective was it to kill somebody on the cover of Lab Rats #1? How effective is it to kill a character that you know will come back? CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS was probably the last time there have been effective death scenes in a comic series, because you knew most of these guys weren't coming back. After that, it just becomes paint-by-numbers shock tactics, which even the critics of such practices resort to with shocking regularity.

  • July 21, 2009, 3:04 p.m. CST

    That was meant to be...

    by MasterBaytor

    "was the last time there have been effective death scenes in a cross-over event"

  • July 21, 2009, 3:11 p.m. CST

    MR. FTW, I agree with you

    by Continentalop

    And I even stated I can understand why they were picked. It is just Blackest Nights unfortunate luck that it follows every other mega-event (or event, period) in comic books that just looks at the population of comic book characters (and usually the ones in costumes with powers) as the only people that matter.

  • July 21, 2009, 3:12 p.m. CST

    Well, that sh!t made me laugh.

    by Homer Sexual

    I suppose that was inappropriate, but zombie Ralph and Sue attacking the Hawks had an hilarious effect on me. I don't think that was intended, but am not sure. I didn't really know what was going on with the Hawks, but they're the perfect kill/resurrect/etc duo. <p> I plan to wait for the trade on this. <p> I love Manhunter, but not enough to pick up Streets of Gotham. The price is too high. I did enjoy random episodes of Detective, like when Zatanna appeared. But I think the "justify the price hike with a backup" is lame. Oh--Ravager. Same thing. Another favorite, but a waste of her character. I'd rather see both those characters incorporated in the regular books than in tiny, limited backups.

  • July 21, 2009, 3:12 p.m. CST

    Ralph and Sue

    by optimous_douche

    If you don't have an affection for them go back and read the relaunch of Justice League after the First Crisis.<p> Offers a whole new perspective.

  • July 21, 2009, 3:17 p.m. CST

    I wish DC or Marvel

    by Series7

    Would just fucking kill dead someone and let it go. There has to be some B-lister that isn't selling that good? Someone like Daredevil, just fucking kill him dead. Don't bring him back, don't have his son become him no more daredevil.

  • July 21, 2009, 3:27 p.m. CST

    I didn't think Sector 666 was Johns' idea.

    by SleazyG.

    I could be way off base here, but I thought that was taken from a Moore or Morrison Green Lantern story waaay back in the mid 80's--which is also the root of where Johns was getting stuff about the prophecy and those weird-ass Children Of The White Lobe or whatever.

  • July 21, 2009, 3:36 p.m. CST

    It may not be his idea...

    by Prof

    ...but utilizing it in this way and coming up with the prophecy aspect of it is original to this storyline.

  • July 21, 2009, 3:39 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    That was one of my (many) complaints with the Star War Prequels. How come everyone involved knows each other really well. For the most part I let it go, but sometimes...

  • July 21, 2009, 3:52 p.m. CST

    by Series7

    Duh! They watched the original series before they went to Starfleet. Remember its an alternate universe, it is kind of like Galaxy Quest.

  • July 21, 2009, 4:08 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan


  • July 21, 2009, 4:12 p.m. CST

    I think Series posted on the wrong TB

    by Continentalop

    Otherwise he is talking way over my head. <p> Which isn't hard to imagine.

  • July 21, 2009, 4:14 p.m. CST

    Star Wars prequels

    by Continentalop

    Yeah. They got something like a million inhabited planets in the Republic, yet they keep running into about a dozen people that will appear in the episodes IV-VI? C'mon!

  • July 21, 2009, 4:19 p.m. CST


    by Series7

    I was responding to Joen comment about.....ohhh shit just realized he said Star Wars, not Star Trek. Ok my joke makes no sense then.

  • July 21, 2009, 4:20 p.m. CST

    Here maybe this joke will work

    by Series7

    DUh! Its the force stupid.

  • July 21, 2009, 4:30 p.m. CST

    All of this would be over my head

    by Snookeroo

    If I were a computer monitor stand.

  • July 21, 2009, 4:47 p.m. CST


    by Continentalop

    You should of just acted like we were to dumb to get your joke - I probably would be blaming myself in a half-hour for not getting it.

  • July 21, 2009, 4:52 p.m. CST


    by Series7

    One of these days you'll get it. It'll be right before some tracatic event, or in the middle of something very important and stressful. You'll just start laughing and everyone else will be freaking out looking at you like you are a lunatic.

  • July 21, 2009, 5:27 p.m. CST

    The difference with Star Wars

    by Mr.FTW

    Was Lucas' hackeneyd writing ability. He thought tieing everything together would be clever and also some sort of fan service like adding Boba Fett and his nod to the camera in Star Wars Special Ed. I can accept you're wanting a larger scope universe but never use the prequals as an example since almost everything about them sucked.

  • July 21, 2009, 5:52 p.m. CST

    The problem with the Star Wars prequels

    by gooseud

    was that Anakin was horribly miscast and looked about as threatening as Justin Timberlake. The kid who played Pyro in X2 was apparently the runner up to Hayden Christiansen, and in one of the epic casting blunders of all time, Lucas went with the matinee idol who is about as threatening as Batroc the Leaper. I mean, watch the scene in X2 where Pyro turns on the police and starts lighting them up, and tell me he couldnt have played Anakin better. The thing is, has anyone here read the novels based on the movies? They are awesome. The "Revenge of the Sith" novelization is one of my all time favorite books, it plugs every plot hole and is basically the shiznit (if you dont believe me, go check Amazon's reader reviews). The problem wasnt the story, it was Lucas and Christenson's lack of ability to execute what should have been awesome.

  • July 21, 2009, 5:53 p.m. CST

    Not a GL reader...

    by KCViking

    but picked up Blackest Night on a recommendation from lcs employee.I enjoyed it enough so I'll pick up the next issue.Here's my question.Do I need to buy the trades of the previous storylines for this to make sense?Seemed fairly easy to follow with issue #1.<p>and damn you joenathan for mentioning that your posts should be read as if the Monarch was speaking(a few weeks back).

  • July 21, 2009, 5:56 p.m. CST

    Crisis had the last effective death scene?

    by gooseud

    Did you read Walking Dead #48? There is a page in that comic that, as the father of a 2 year old daughter, bothers me to this day. J'onn J'onnz was pretty effective in FC, right? Cap's death scene was actually pretty awesome in its non-clicheness (as Bru showed it as it actually would happen in something resembling reality). Having said that, Barry Allen's death in Crisis still is pretty close to the gold standard in comics death scenes (just as Supergirl's is the gold standard of hackneyed, over the top, John Wayne cliche crap in that same series).

  • July 21, 2009, 5:59 p.m. CST

    Marv Wolfman - Fanboys go to this panel

    by hallmitchell

    I saw him speak in Australia a few years ago. Fantastic speaker. Great stories as well.

  • July 21, 2009, 5:59 p.m. CST

    I think an invasion

    by gooseud

    of small, furry striped aliens from the planet Yazbac in the Florian system, except they are dead and zombies and making giant black boxing gloves with their black rings being like "You've been hoodwinked! Bamboozled! Led Astray!!" would be pretty awesome. Just saying, I would totally read that.

  • July 21, 2009, 6:02 p.m. CST

    I meant ina cross-over event

    by MasterBaytor

    Regular comics have loads of them. Cross-over events haven't had an effective death since the first CRISIS.

  • July 21, 2009, 6:06 p.m. CST

    Best death scenes

    by Continentalop

    I think Marvel for years had the monopoly of effective deaths: Bucky, Gwen Stacy, Green Goblin, Thunderbird, Phoenix, Captain Marvel, Captain DeWolff, Kraven the Hunter, etc. Unfortunately so many of those lasting deaths have been neutralized by those character's resurrections. <P> I believe that both Jean Grey and Norman Osborn should never have been brought back - and while I do admit Norman is being used effectively as the "establishment" villain, I also think that role could have been used by another villain or they could have created somebody new to fill that role. <p> And yes, Bucky's resurrection is offset by Brubaker's awesome run, but part of me still cringes at the thought of Bucky returning from the dead. <p> Oh, and one more great death by Marvel that was butchered was the moving and powerful miscarriage of Susan Richards. Since then they have somehow managed to resurrect her unborn daughter - lame.

  • July 21, 2009, 6:08 p.m. CST

    And Guardian from Alpha Flight

    by Continentalop

    He was a very effective death until they fucking brought him back (using the same hackneyed explanation that John Byrne's used as a ruse for when Omega Flight pretended he came about - arrggh!).

  • July 21, 2009, 6:15 p.m. CST

    Continental Op is right on!

    by Homer Sexual

    You listed all the effective deaths and the horrible resurrections as well. <p> J'onn J'onzz death was terribly ineffective. I honest to God thought Pantha's death was better, and I was not even familiar with the character. For DC deaths, definitely since the 80's that they've had any good ones. <p> Jean Grey definitely the WORST resurrection of all time, and Osborne is a close second.

  • July 21, 2009, 6:40 p.m. CST

    DC's deaths seem to fall under four categories

    by Continentalop

    1) Trying to imitate Barry Allen/The Flash's death so they make room to introduce a new caretaker of the name (Hal Jordan killed to make room for Kyle Rayner, Ronald Raymond killed to make room for Jason Rusch, Oliver Queen replaced by Connor Hawke, Ted Kord replaced by douche boy, Ray Palmer replaced TWICE, etc.) and almost always the original version comes back. It is just a cheesy way to cash in on another characters legacy. <p> 2) Someone killed as a morbid stunt like how Jason Todd was originally killed with a 1-800 number. Plus, they can always just replace this character with someone with the same name. <p> 3) Just kill a bunch of cannon fodder. Do we really care about 90% or the characters that were killed in Salvation Run? Their death's happened only because they are not big name characters and the writers can show how bloody and vicious they can be. Tell you what, write a story about how the death of Crazy Quilt has meaning and pathos and I will think you are an awesome writer. <p> 4) Big name character's killed as an obvious stunt and as publicity. I mean did you really think that Superman was going to stay dead or Batman is going to stay dead? Hell, do you think Martian Manhunter is going to stay dead? <p>

  • July 21, 2009, 6:45 p.m. CST

    Continentalop - Guardian

    by DennisMM

    You mean he wasn't really transported to the the distant future, then the distant past? I stopped reading around that time. ;)

  • July 21, 2009, 6:50 p.m. CST

    Question about 'Blackest Night'

    by dogrobber

    I have a stack of GL's I have yet to read (along with a bunch of other titles), starting just after the Sinestro Corps war,but after reading the review I went ahead and read 'Blackest Night'. Really enjoyed the set-up but I have a question about the Black Lanterns because of the resurrected Sue and Ralph Dibny; has the storyline explained what the 'zombies' are/where they are from? I only ask because I thought Ralph and Sue were now ghost detectives of some kind (and I thought Ralph's body dissolved or something). Are the Black Lanterns reanimated corpses, or just copies of dead supers, or are they corrupted ghosts? Are they culled from just one dimension's Earth or all 52? Thanks.

  • July 21, 2009, 6:50 p.m. CST


    by Continentalop

    No, he REALLY was transported to the distant past to one of the moons of Jupiter. This was originally just a story that the robot chick Daphne Courtney made up to fool Heather Hudson. It was kind of a parody of the convoluted resurrections that happen in comic books and it was all BS - just a lie that the fake Guardian said. UNTIL some writer brought him back and made this the actual explanation. <p> I think it was Bill Mantlo who did that - guy was great on Hulk and Micronauts but man did his Alpha Flight suck.

  • July 21, 2009, 6:53 p.m. CST

    Ralph and Sue...

    by Thrillho77

    You knew that they were going to come back all zombified. And still, something in Ivan Reis's art made me GASP when I flipped that page to see them interrupting Carter and Kendra.

  • July 21, 2009, 7:09 p.m. CST


    by DennisMM

    Thanks. Even weirder than I remembered.

  • July 21, 2009, 8:12 p.m. CST

    Cross-over events are just

    by Snookeroo

    bend-over events for the comic buyer.<br><br>Just sayin'.

  • July 21, 2009, 8:44 p.m. CST

    Liam's a Parrot Head

    by optimous_douche

    He ages in 3/4 time...

  • July 21, 2009, 8:45 p.m. CST

    It Ain't Bend Over

    by optimous_douche

    If it's good...

  • July 21, 2009, 9:39 p.m. CST

    wait ..... are you shitting me????

    by the milf lover

    "...miscarriage of Susan Richards. Since then they have somehow managed to resurrect her unborn daughter" <p> What the fuck? Is that for real?? Details please...

  • July 21, 2009, 10:09 p.m. CST

    BN stuff

    by Thalya

    1. Optimous! You should expect DiDio to flat out lie about things like no White Lanterns at convention panels. It's half the fun right there. <BR><BR> Not to mention, this one time? At WWC '05? At a DC Nation panel he flat out asked the audience if anyone thought they'd sincerely kill off Bruce Wayne ('member IC #1 with the Bat Signal on the Spectre's chest and Bruce generally going downhill about that time? In fact, he even set out the rumor that they were going to kill him a couple of months earlier at WWP). My hand shot up and stayed up despite no one else's being raised. Well I was RIGHT, dammit! <BR><BR> 2. Hal Jordan was also briefly an Orange Lantern for one page a few issues back in GL. <BR><BR> Me? I can't wait to see him in a Star Sapphire uniform being eaten by zombies! <BR><BR> 3. Laserhead - excuse me, what were you saying about Rainbow Brite now? *stares* <BR><BR> 4. J'onn has been ressurrected already, he confronted Hal and John at the end of BN #1. <BR><BR> 5. Continentalop - surely you can't be including The Brain and Monsieur Mallah in your third/Salvation Run point, can you? These guys can't be Black Lanterns enough!

  • July 22, 2009, 2:22 a.m. CST

    was it just me

    by HebrewLantern

    or was tales of the corps really boring? will this be the case for the rest?<P>also has anyone said anything about rainbow lantern? =)

  • July 22, 2009, 2:59 a.m. CST

    milf lover, I would never shit're my favorite turd.

    by Continentalop

    Sorry, I couldn't resist pulling out a quote from The Last Detail. <p> But what part do you need details on, the miscarriage or the resurrection...?

  • July 22, 2009, 3:58 a.m. CST


    by HebrewLantern

    how bout the conception? =)

  • July 22, 2009, 4:26 a.m. CST


    by Continentalop

    It was the time that Sue asked Reed if he had a rubber. <p> "Baby, I AM rubber."

  • July 22, 2009, 6:28 a.m. CST


    by hst666

    I would like details on the resurrection. I assumed Valeria was a new kid. <p><p> Man, I loved Byrne's run on the FF. The one thing I hated was that he deaged Franklin. But that was about all I did not like. Until that F@#$head DeFalco undid everything Byrne did. Sue's miscarriage was pretty powerful at the time.

  • July 22, 2009, 6:30 a.m. CST

    Rainbow Raider

    by hst666

    He seems to be among the Flash's lost villains. He seems like he'd be perfect for the Black Lantern saga.

  • July 22, 2009, 7:49 a.m. CST


    by steverodgers

    Good joke! Almost spit out my coffee.

  • July 22, 2009, 8:15 a.m. CST

    I miss Bruce Wayne already

    by kalel21

    And I miss really cool comic book covers like this one: Those REALLY were the good ol' days.

  • July 22, 2009, 8:51 a.m. CST

    Damage Wasn't Retconned

    by ThusSpakeSpymunk

    They mention he can't "face anybody" because his face was also destroyed. Read, please.

  • July 22, 2009, 8:53 a.m. CST


    by ThusSpakeSpymunk

    I really have mixed feelings on BLACKEST NIGHT. It feels like they're gearing up for a truly epic event, but the writing on Issue #1 leaves me shocked people are so impressed with it. Suddenly, Ralph and Sue Dibny (for whom I have -no- affection, btw) are talking like Freddy Krueger in every speaking panel, as is Martian Manhunter. If BLACKEST NIGHT ends up wth every zombie villain spouting off like Freddy a la "YOU WON'T BE ANYWHERE - YOU'LL JUST BE DEAD, BIT**!" then I've no interest. Why not simply give all the Black Lanterns their own voice?

  • July 22, 2009, 9:32 a.m. CST

    It Was a joke ThusSpake

    by optimous_douche

    Someone at DC goofed and Damage says his NAVAL cavity was destroyed instead of his NASAL cavity.

  • July 22, 2009, 9:50 a.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    I have modelled my entire existance on the Monarch, besides, I think it adds an enjoyable flavor to the TB read.

  • July 22, 2009, 10:02 a.m. CST

    Blackest Night

    by Joenathan

    Personally, I'm hoping for a cross-over with the Marvel Zombies series... when wacky talking zombies from one universe collide with the wacky talking zombies from another... All Hell breaks loose! <br><br>Then we could have a zombie Amalgam universe. That would be totally sweet!

  • July 22, 2009, 11:10 a.m. CST


    by Mr.FTW

    So does that mean your girlfriend has a whiskey and cigarettes trucker voice and dress like Jackie O?

  • July 22, 2009, 11:15 a.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    Yes, she does. Wanna make somethin' of it?

  • July 22, 2009, 11:37 a.m. CST

    Who knows how these retcons happen....

    by Homer Sexual

    I have no idea how Sue Richards' miscarriage was retconned, but it's creepy and gross. Vindicator also had a good death, so resurrecting him is lame. However, ridiculous resurrections are one thing we comic fans really MUST just accept, I suppose. <p> Still, bring back a miscarriage is really creepy. <p> Spymunk, I also thought the writing was hilarious. Comparing Zombie Ralph and Sue to Freddy Krueger is very apt. It was a bit enjoyable, but I don't think it was supposed to be dark humor. <p> Ok, I will say that I was pretty bummed when Grodd killed Monsieur Mallah in Salvation Run. That monkey's death honestly got to me.

  • July 22, 2009, 11:52 a.m. CST

    Whiskey voice

    by Mr.FTW

    I don't particularly want to make anything of it I was just currious, good times. Must be kind of weir din the dark but het to each their own right?<p> So wasn't old Continentalop going to tell us his thought on Dick Grayson's awesomeness this week?

  • July 22, 2009, 1:31 p.m. CST

    Zombies with Freddy voice

    by gooseud

    Once again, I must say that if all the zombies in Blackest Night simply cracked jokes like Freddy, that would be awesomeness. Combine the giant green recliner "Why dont you.....PUT YOUR FEET UP, Sinestro!" cheese of the Green Lantern Corps with the Freddy Kruger (woman stands on a street corner in her dream smoking) "Hey Mary.....NEED A LIGHT??" (Freddy shoots her with giant flamethrower) type one-liners, and I think the world may explode from the craptastic awesomeness

  • July 22, 2009, 1:58 p.m. CST

    Resurrection of Sue's miscarried baby

    by Continentalop

    Ok, I never really read the story of Valeria being born, because I had long given up the FF by then, but after seeing her in Waid's run I was curious to who the fuck she was so I looked it up. Here is part of her entry on Wikipedia: <p> Valeria von Doom first appeared during writer Chris Claremont and artist Salvador Larroca's run on Fantastic Four, suddenly materializing in the Fantastic Four's headquarters, professing to be from the future, and the daughter of Doctor Doom (Victor von Doom) and the Invisible Woman....It was unknown how Doctor Doom and the Invisible Woman would come together in the future, and how Mister Fantastic would be removed from the picture. Things seemed to be coming together when Mister Fantastic became trapped in Doom's armor, and publicly pretended to be the villain, re-marrying Sue and making her his baroness...but as events proceeded, Reed was freed from the armor, again calling Valeria's future into question. <p> While Chris Claremont intended to resolve the storyline, he never got the chance, as Jeph Loeb and Carlos Pacheco took over Fantastic Four and brought Valeria back into the title, changing the character's origins. She was revealed to be the second, unborn child of Reed and Sue Richards, whom Sue had seemingly miscarried years before. Under the guidance of Roma, Franklin had used his powers to save the child, who was taken by Roma, who knew that the girl would serve a great purpose in the future...Valeria was actually raised in an alternate future as the daughter of Doom and Sue. Loeb and Pacheco brought Valeria back into the book as the FF went up against the cosmic menace of Abraxas, and Valeria fulfilled her purpose by merging her powers with Franklin and reconstituting Galactus to stop Abraxas. In the restructuring of reality that ensued, Valeria was regressed to a fetus within Sue's womb once again, on the cusp of being born. <p> This might be the new winner for lamest resurrection ever.

  • July 22, 2009, 2:23 p.m. CST

    One reason why Dick Grayson/Robin rocks...

    by Continentalop

    Imagine you're a criminal in Gotham city in 1940, the darkest, most crime ridden city in America. You already know that there is someone out there that attacks criminals called "The Bat-Man." Some people claim he is a vampire, others claim he has powers and still others claim he just a vigilante in a bat-costume. Well, because you are criminals you are already a cowardly and superstitious lot, you are thinking the worse and you are hoping you don't run into him. <p> However, one night while knocking over the Gotham Central Bank, a giant shadow of a bat falls over you and your partners and you are attacked by Batman. A fight breaks out, and while Batman is tough as hell you are beginning to suspect there is nothing superstitious about him at all. He just seems to be a real tough guy in a Dracula costume. Maybe you can kill him. <p> Then suddenly you hear a laugh, like you would hear at a schoolyard. But it is 2AM! You turn to see a kid, about 10-years old, standing over all of you in a bright yellow and red costume with a cherubic smile. He tells Batman to stop hogging all the fun and then jumps in. <p> You're thinking this is a joke and that you and your partners are gonna kill this kid in seconds. But before you know it Louey and Phil are on the ground and the kid has punched you in the gutt so hard you think you might have shit yourself. WTF? The kid is taking on four grown men while laughing and smiling, and you can hear Batman laugh in the background, telling "Robin" to stop playing with them. <p> If you think the image of a man in a black Batman costume would inspire fear, add a kid dressed in brilliant red and yellow costume with green shorts. laughing and smiling while kicking adult men's ass. He wouldn't look ridiculous to them, he would look absolutely demonic, and make people think Batman was a creature of supernatural terror.

  • July 22, 2009, 2:24 p.m. CST

    Whats that?

    by Series7

    You wanted more reviews? This idiot doesn't even know shit about Green Lantern. <P>

  • July 22, 2009, 2:24 p.m. CST


    by Series7

    You just want to have sex with Dick don't you? We get it, you like the Dick.

  • July 22, 2009, 2:26 p.m. CST

    Soooo Grant Morrison

    by Series7

    Got his job in comics, because he is Lex Luthor? <P>

  • July 22, 2009, 2:28 p.m. CST

    I'm sorry I really can't buy

    by Series7

    A 10 year old beating anything up. Maybe a small gang of them ala Hostel. But I would take on 10 year old after 10 year old until it was time for another Big Mac, and my blood sugar ran low. <P> That or it was one of them there creepy jap ten year olds they have in dem movies.

  • July 22, 2009, 2:49 p.m. CST


    by gooseud

    He was blown off the plane when it exploded, blowing his arm clean off and basically throwing him to his doom, but they pulled him out of the ice before he could freeze or something to that effect

  • July 22, 2009, 4:15 p.m. CST

    He's not way older cuz...

    by SleazyG.

    ...the Russians would defrost him, use him for missions, then throw him back in a cryochamber for years at a stretch. As a result, he's older than when he "died" as Bucky, but not nearly as old as he would be otherwise (which is like 79 or something).<p> NOTE: Please do not attempt to "Winter Soldier" pork or chicken, as the continued freezing/defrosting/refreezing is bad, bad news.

  • July 22, 2009, 4:17 p.m. CST

    How did they get him back in the freezer?

    by Joenathan

    Poison his milk like B.A. Baracus?

  • July 22, 2009, 4:19 p.m. CST

    Any of you guys frequent Jinxworld?

    by Joenathan


  • July 22, 2009, 7:57 p.m. CST

    Wasnt Winter Solider...

    by KCViking

    under some kind of mind control? That's the impression I got at least.<p>Joenathan your plan is working!Keep it up.

  • July 22, 2009, 10:10 p.m. CST

    all this talk of free black rings..

    by firehawk_thexder

    and my lcs was selling them for 3 bucks apiece..

  • July 23, 2009, 12:27 a.m. CST

    thanks for the info on the miscarriage rebirth

    by the milf lover

    that has to be one of the stupidest storylines I've ever heard of, and boy are there a lot of stupid things in comic books.

  • July 23, 2009, 9:33 a.m. CST


    by ThusSpakeSpymunk

    "So that Robin kid beat you up?" "Uh, NO! He had a little ... Bat-Mite, yeah, a Bat-Mite demon who did it - and a DOG! Yeah, a police dog German Shepard thing with an executioner's mask!" "Dude, that's bull****. You got pwned by a 10-year-old." "NO, I DIDN'T!"

  • July 23, 2009, 9:36 a.m. CST

    Personally ...

    by ThusSpakeSpymunk

    ... I had always imagined the BLACKEST NIGHT zombies would be more of the variety of free-willed creatures, pitiful but no less evil. Sort of like the Zombie Torso Girl in RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD. "The pain - must stop the pain of being ... dead!" etc. In those Ralph/Sue pages, Johns has destroyed all the pathos of the series, because we now know Ralph and Sue would never act that way so it's clearly not "them" doing the killing of heroes. Wouldn't it be much scarier and nastier if it was like some kind of evil that corrupted their minds?

  • July 23, 2009, 9:38 a.m. CST


    by ThusSpakeSpymunk

    You know what you need to do, Laserhead? Go for a walk in the park. Really - just go for a walk in the park. I'm SERIOUS. Please let me know if you take my advice.

  • July 23, 2009, 9:50 a.m. CST

    Valeria's retcon

    by Homer Sexual

    I think that is, indeed, the worst retcon I have ever read. Not the biggest problem, since she's not exactly a prominent character, but that is an example of some horrible writing. <p> So, Blackest Night is kind of like Fight Club. Highly entertaining, not sure if the humor is intentional. <p> Yesterday my LCS recommended I NOT buy the conclusion to Legion of Three Worlds, calling it "one of the worst written books of the year." It wasn't that bad...but it wasn't so good either.

  • July 23, 2009, 10:47 a.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    I bet your shop could get in a lot of trouble for selling promotional items like that. You should e-mail DC and rat those cheap bastards out.

  • July 23, 2009, 12:06 p.m. CST


    by Thalya

    How are you separating Ralph and Sue's minds from some of the things they say and do? Ralph's nose was twitching, for one thing.

  • July 23, 2009, 12:41 p.m. CST

    I'm confused, Spymunk.

    by SleazyG.

    What makes you think it *wasn't* some sort of evil that corrupted their minds? It seemed pretty clear to me that their minds are at least part of the equation, since they had Ralph and Sue's memories and knowledge. The rings channel the ugly, hate-filled, evil, murderous stuff, but the Ralph and Sue memories are still there. Seemed like they'd been possessed by an evil force, but one that can access their experiences and use them to inflict greater emotional harm on their victims. At least that's the way I saw it.

  • July 23, 2009, 12:45 p.m. CST


    by Prof much of a rotted nose he had left was twitching. I read these as having the "minds" of the characters, but their souls are gone so the power of the Black Lantern is filling that space and corrupting who and what they used to be. Maybe the White Lantern's power will be to transfigure these characters by reuiniting their bodies and souls driving the spirit of the Black Lantern out of them.

  • July 23, 2009, 1:28 p.m. CST

    I take that back somewhat..

    by Thalya

    Reading up a few of your posts, Spymunk, I'm still a little confused by the way you phrase things, but I think I might understand your gist and agree with it.<BR><BR>Are you getting at how the characterization (what some might term the 'soul') of the BLs has been completely obliterated save for some qualities that might be considered physical artefacts (nose twitching, even memories)? That the BLs are nothing more than shells or conduits for whatever subhuman force is animating them?<BR><BR>That's the sense I got at least. And the suggestion that their essential natures have been completely obliterated, rather than altered by a seed of evil which can then be expelled, I find much more horrifying of the two; it kinda ties into what Prof was describing in the review about that base zombie pathos. Besides, mind control is such a common enough trope it carries the expectation of easy reversal with it. And Black being the complete absence of light fits better with that sense of obliteration.

  • July 23, 2009, 2:37 p.m. CST


    by ThusSpakeSpymunk

    You got it, exactly. It's disappointing that they all have the same narrative voice ("MWAH-HAH-HAH - DIEEEEE! DIEEEEE!") when a much greater story might've been mined from simply reanimating dead characters and suffusing them with some kind of evil corruption. That these are just 'bodies' means we're NOT getting actual Ralph and Sue Dibny, NOT getting Martian Manhunter, NOT getting Aquaman when it's his turn, etc. It'd be like if Bart and Connor came back (YAY!, they actually did) but were instead talking and moving around like Mordru because he reanimated their corpses as a puppet master. It's not THEM, so where is the drama of these characters returning from the dead to attack the living? It steals the drama because it's NOT REALLY THEM. It's "something with their shape," like Freddy Krueger pretending to be a loved-one in the dream world. I'd rather see the actual characters back and corrupted.

  • July 23, 2009, 4:29 p.m. CST

    I'm not sure if it steals the drama..

    by Thalya

    It just shifts it. Man's struggle against death is as primal a dramatic force as they come, at that, which is what everyone vs the BLs really is. And given the context of the massive slaughter of the last several years in the DCU (and the underexploration of its impact), Hal's own personal needs to confront death, and larger cultural issues like our youth culture, this feels the more necessary tack than simply another "friends turn to the dark side" story.

  • July 23, 2009, 9:18 p.m. CST

    promotional black rings

    by firehawk_thexder

    yeah, while it grates on me that my LCS was charging for the rings, the last thing I'd want to do is get them in trouble for it.. I'll just vote with my wallet and not buy one.

  • July 24, 2009, 4:45 a.m. CST

    Blackest Night zombies

    by hst666

    Soundf like vampires in the BTVS world as the sould is replaced by a demon. Haven't read it yet as I am out of the country for awhile and my LCS in the states ships monthly.