Comics

HAPPY HALLOWEEN, @$$HOLES! AICN COMICS REVIEWS VAMPIRE HAIKU! FVZA! TINGLER! JLA! COWBOY NINJA VIKING! STAR WARS! & MUCH MORE!!!

Published at: Oct. 28, 2009, 10:46 a.m. CST by ambush bug

#24 10/21/09 #8

The Pull List (Click title to go directly to the review) Guest Review/Contest Winner: HEADS ON AND WE SHOOT: THE MAKING OF WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE DC HALLOWEEN SPECIAL ’09 One-Shot VAMPIRE HAIKU OGN COWBOY NINJA VIKING #1 MIGHTY AVENGERS #30 GRIMM FAIRY TALES HALLOWEEN SPECIAL #1 FVZA #1 JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #38 STAR WARS: KNIGHTS OF THE OLD REPUBLIC #46 VINCENT PRICE PRESENTS THE TINGLER #1-2 Big Eyes For the Cape Guy presents GANTZ Vol. 7 Indie Jones presents… Raiders of the Long Box presents Halloween Comics worth digging for!

Winner of the WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE Contest Review!

HEADS ON AND WE SHOOT: THE MAKING OF WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE

Editor: McSweeney’s Editorial Publisher: Harper Collins Guest Reviewer/Contest Winner: DOC

Whether it was because of my eviscerating wit or the amount of Ambush Butt I must've kissed, I have been blessed by the wooly mammoth gods themselves with a signed copy of HEADS ON AND WE SHOOT: THE MAKING OF WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE. Now, I can see all your chubby jealous pink faces staring at the screen hating every typed word, but please bear with me, because this book (should I call it an experience?) is one of the deepest, most revealing behind the scenes movie books I've read. Don't be jealous. The book is either the greatest yearbook you've ever seen (none of your class mates were ten foot tall monsters) or the most artistic and beautiful DVD featurette you've ever seen. The book splits into three sections while opening like a giant 'W'. The design reminds me of the odd creative perfection of the original Sendak masterpiece, or Spike Jonze's labor of love, the construction and execution comes across as bizarre, creative, and fun all at once.
I've seen behind the scenes books and movie picture books of all types, but the content here is where this book goes the extra length. The story is told via interviews of Spike, Maurice Sendak, Dave Eggers, the actors and the crew all discussing every step of this five year process. Handwritten notes are scrawled in between interviews and pictures adding another layer of info and fun to the whole package. I'm assuming if you're reading this you've seen the movie, and you'll recognize the beauty of the film in almost every photo in this book. Seeing the double page spreads of the boat crashing through the water, or a headless wild thing teasing with the crew, it adds a depth to the movie that I don't think you'd see otherwise. I don't want to ruin any of the twists and turns illuminated within but I have to say I was surprised by a lot of it. I have read almost every article and interview on AintItCool, but the things I didn't know about the behind the scenes on this movie I can just about fit into the Grand Flipping Canyon. The insights and photos are inspiring. I have all the big Henson books and the “Star Wars” behind the scenes; this one trumps them in every way.
The book, as well as the movie, reflects a real innocent soul. Pictures of thousand dollar costumes and sets are matched with pictures of kids smiling at a parent's camera, a typed afterword by Spike is just as touching as a chicken scratch list of numbers (i.e. how many times someone was punched, how many times someone cried, how many people found romance, etc.) Max Records comes off as poetic as Maurice Sendak. Everyone simply believes in the project and did everything they could for it, and it shows. It's a wonder they don't make books this beautiful and touching for every large production. Heck, maybe they do. But I doubt any of them are as heart warming and fun as this one. If you see it at the library, get it. If you see it at a bookstore, just flip through it for a second, the images alone will entice you; the words will convince you that hanging out with Spike Jonze must be somw of the coolest and most contagious fun you'll have. It's a great companion to a great film based on a great book.

DC HALLOWEEN SPECIAL ’09 One-Shot

Writers: Lotsa folks Artists: Lots more folks Published by: DC Comics Reviewed by: BottleImp

“You know, I've really learned something today. Halloween isn't about costumes, or candy. It's about being good to one another, and giving and loving.” “…No, dude, that's Christmas.” “Oh, then, what's Halloween about?” “Costumes and candy.”
I wish DC’s editorial staff had taken heed of the wise words of the foul-mouthed children of SOUTH PARK, and not tried to turn Halloween into a Very Special holiday. Granted, only a couple of this one-shot’s stories veered into that saccharine category, but that was enough to sour the whole deal for me. That, and the fact that the stories that managed not to fall into the realm of maudlin didn’t have much life to them. I mean, come on, people! It’s Halloween—why not give some love to all those characters that tread the line between Superhero Fantasy and Horror? Why not Etrigan, or Dr. Occult, or the Spectre? Why not Swamp Thing or Dr. Fate? Hell, why not Solomon Grundy, Blue Devil or the rest of the SHADOWPACT third-stringers? Geez…anyway, here’s my rundown of this one-shot.
Bizarro in Unhappy Halloween —This framing story written by Jake Black is one of the more successful chapters of the comic. Though the whole opposite schtick gets old reeeeeaaaaal quick, the notion of Bizarro flying door-to-door giving other Bizarro-people fruits and vegetables as “treats” and mowing their lawns as “tricks” is pretty cute. Ibraim Roberson also provides some pretty nice art to go along with the gag.
Guy Gardner in Halloween the Guy Way —Guuuh. I don’t know what Adam Schlagman was thinking when he wrote this one. The basic premise sounds like gold—Guy Gardner, the frat boy of the Green Lantern Corps, throwing a Halloween bash on the planet Oa. So why did Schlagman choose to sully it with pointless flashbacks to Guy’s unhappy childhood with his abusive father? The juxtaposition is clumsy, forced, and takes space away from what should have been the focus: the party. See the above quote, Schlagman. Mark Bagley, whose work I really liked back when he was doing NEW WARRIORS, really phones it in here with boring and sometimes downright clunky artwork.
The Creeper in What Creeps Out the Creeper —This fun one page filler by Duncan Rouleau makes me wish that the Guy story had been chucked and Rouleau allotted those pages to work with.
The Outsiders in Seeing is Believing —Finally, a story with a touch of Halloween horror…albeit a small one. Really, Kelley Jones’ art is the only thing that keeps Michael Siglain’s script from falling squarely in the realm of Superhero Fantasy, vampires, Frankenstein monsters and all. But hey, at least the Outsiders don’t wax poetic about their childhoods.
Batman in Halloween Trick and Defeat —This is a fun little story that really could have taken place any time of the year; the holiday just provides the setup for the story’s punchline. Decent work from writers Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani, and very nice art from Sergio Carrera.
Robin in Cavity Search —The new Damian Wayne Robin takes on a dentist-turned-psychopath “Sugar Tooth.” What could have been a creepy, SAW-like story ends up being just as bland as the rest of this issue. Maybe the short story format was really hard to work with for writer Derek Fridolfs, but the pacing seemed off, and what little excitement Dustin Nguyen could bring to the table with his art didn’t make enough of an impact.
Red Robin in Our Father’s Sins —Boo. A trite piece of crap that has nothing to do with Halloween at all. At. All. A big “F” to writer Ariel Thomas. Sorry you had to waste your time illustrating this, Matt Triano.
Ravager in Lady Down the Lane —Whatever.
Kid Flash in Mirror Games —This is another one that has so much potential, but the elements never quite gel. Writer Joe Harris’ idea of Mirror Master being afraid of the “Bloody Mary” ghost story is great, and the art by Andrei Bressan works well, but once again I think the space limitations hampered what could have been a better story.
Beast Boy in Never Too Old —Cute.
Wonder Woman in Haunted or Hoax —This one has me perplexed. Okay, so writer Mandy McMurray is trying to say that Wonder Woman is so naïve that she would believe that a “Blair Witch”-style horror movie was real? How long has she been living in America now, even in comic-book time? Since when was Wonder Woman so gullible? And why, when the Teen Tits…I mean, Titans are frolicking in a pool does it look like they’re being electrocuted? Scott Clark’s art (doing its best Michael Turner impersonation) doesn’t save this story from being a dog.
Superman & the Flash in To the Finish Line —Probably the most successful chapter in this one-shot. Writer/artist Billy Tucci crafts a fun story with a great twist ending and some of the best drawing of the whole book. This would have been the perfect place to end the issue, on a real artistic high note…
But then we get another boring story. Superman in My Turn to be Scary—Joshua Williamson pens a story of the Daily Planet haunted house (oooookayy…if you say so) and Superman using his powers to terrify teenagers. Okay art from Peter Nguyen makes this a mediocre entry, with the final pages of the Bizarro chapter finishing off the comic.
Seriously, DC—would it have been so difficult to put together a Halloween special that actually felt like Halloween, especially given the whopping $5.99 cover price? Word to the wise—this is one comic better left on the stands.
When released from his Bottle, the Imp takes the form of Stephen Andrade, an artist/illustrator/pirate monkey painter from the Northeast. You can see some of his artwork athere. He’s given up comics more times than he can remember. But every time he thinks he's out, they pull him back in.

VAMPIRE HAIKU OGN

Writer: Ryan Mecum Art: Lisa Kuhn Publisher: HOW Books Reviewer: Ambush Bug

Keep your mouth on tight. Lips firmly pressed against skin. (Due to the spurting).

From the ghoulish bard who brought you ZOMBIE HAIKU, Ryan Mecum counts out his five-seven-five syllable poetry to the tune of another creature of the night and peppers in some deliciously moody imagery from Lisa Kuhn to sweeten the deal. Sure, these days when the word vampire comes up, folks are more likely to roll their eyes rather than hide under the covers. But I'm not one of those who avoids all things vampire just because pop culture tries its damndest to neuter it with product geared toward tweens. Before it was trendy, I was a vampire fan, devouring all forms of movie, TV show, book, and comic if it passed before me. Here in VAMPIRE HAIKU, a classic story is told through the eyes of a newly turned vampire in sweet haiku verse and every passage is as cool as they come.
Blood tastes like cherries. Mixed with a lot of copper. And way too much salt.

Just as the fantastic ZOMBIE HAIKU followed a man trying to survive the zombie apocalypse and then continued to follow his poetic experiences as he is bitten and slowly turned into a zombie himself, VAMPIRE HAIKU charts a similar journey as a pilgrim boat makes its way across the Atlantic to the new world. The young man finds that it is not safe to wander the boat at night and soon meets a frightening end and a new beginning as he encounters a vampire named Katherine. For the rest of the book, our poetic vampire Forrest Gumps through three centuries, offering a glimpse at world famous events through new blood-shot eyes. The Boston Tea Party, the Alamo, the release of Bram Stoker's tell-all novel, Amelia Earheart's famous flight, Woodstock, the Viet Nam War, the Son of Sam Killings, the Branch Davidian Compound fiasco, Woodstock II, and even the rise in vampire movies in cinema is all game for our vampire to wax haikus about.
If this were real life. Ed would have looked at her neck. Bite, dead, burp, credits.

As fun as this story is, the use of haiku never gets trite or old. Mecum is actually a pretty good poet mixing frightening observations with clever humor. One haiku will make your belly jiggle with laughter, the next will make your skin shiver, and sometimes both occur at once.
You know that your drink. Is down to the last few sips. Once the toes curl up.

VAMPIRE HAIKU is accompanied by mixed media art by Lisa Kuhn. The imagery is as random as the ping-pong-y storyline, but fitting as the media changes through the ages to reflect the passing of time. Pages are splattered with blood and ash and set the stage for an even moodier experience. From the classy front cover to the ashen and blood smeared pages within, Kuhn offers up one treat for the eyes.
Discarded band-aids. Are rare unexpected treats. My version of gum.

In the end, this is yet another creative installment from Ryan Mecum. I'm wondering where this ghoulish poet will go next. This one is more narrative and seems a bit more substantial thematically and emotionally than ZOMBIE HAIKU (mainly because the character is longing to find the beautiful and elusive vampire who turned him), but like that book, it takes everything you love about the genre and puts it under a fresh new light. For those looking for something different to read this Halloween, VAMPIRE HAIKU is definitely unique and aside from the poetry, it holds a compelling story.
I only need blood. But sometimes I eat apples. Well...Adam's apples.

It’s VAMPIRE HAIKU. It’s highly recommended. You best check it out.
Ambush Bug is Mark L. Miller, reviewer and co-editor of AICN Comics for over eight years and one of the original @$$holes. Check out his comic book shorts from Cream City Comics’ MUSCLES & FIGHTS VOL.3 and MUSCLES & FRIGHTS VOL.1 on his ComicSpace page. Bug was interviewed here and here at Cream City Comics and here and here about his latest comic from Bluewater Comics, VINCENT PRICE PRESENTS: THE TINGLER #1-2. Look for more comics from Bug in 2010 from Bluewater, including VINCENT PRICE PRESENTS WITCHFINDER GENERAL, ROGER CORMAN PRESENTS DEATHSPORT, and the just announced vampire miniseries NANNY & HANK.

COWBOY NINJA VIKING #1

Writer: A.J. Lieberman Artist: Riley Rossmo Publisher: Image Comics Reviewer: Humphrey Lee

COWBOY NINJA VIKING is a comic book that immediately invokes a couple things I love about the medium of comic books. Firstly, it took me approximately four pages into reading this to realize “OH FUCK! This is the guy who actually made Hush interesting!” when it came to A.J. Lieberman. I do not know why, but seeing a writer or other creative member who I had completely forgotten (sorry AJ) is like when you recognize someone in a movie as the snobby neighbor from a cancelled HBO series; you can’t help but bask in your media savvy as you relegate someone’s career to a bit of obscure trivia. Secondly, it makes my inner child fist pump over the idea that not only could he have been any one of these three occupations when he grew up, but he was selling himself short by thinking he had to choose only one. And lastly, there’s the thrill I enjoyed from this book simply out of the joy of trying out something pretty, well, outrageous and gimmicky and having it pay off tremendously, as COWBOY NINJA VIKING did in spades.
In all honestly, I pretty much never go for these damn mash-up books. Ninjas versus Pirates. Zombies versus Aliens. Zombies versus fucking Robots? Obama versus Deadites. Republicans versus Reality. All these random pairings that any intern with five hours to kill pumps out for a cheap cash grab. But, at the same time, I absofuckinglutely love Riley Rossmo – he being of PROOF fame – and his art, and his name alone, since apparently I could not place the writer (sorry again AJ!), made me feel that maybe there would be more to it than a vain attempt at a fistful of green bills. The end result was definitely much more satisfying than I ever could have hoped, in that it was something well thought out and executed. And that reveled in the nature of what it was, which I always appreciate. Chances are if you are dabbling in these waters you’re not exactly going to set the industry on its head with any sort of big, unexpected twist, but if you can find a somewhat fresh approach to the material, and you can poke a little fun at yourself whilst telling an interesting yarn, then you definitely have something I am going to, well, extol your virtues about for a paragraph without actually talking about the plot yet, apparently.
Now, the plot of COWBOY NINJA VIKING is that, uh, well he’s a Cowboy Ninja Viking. Or, more apt, he’s a multiple personality who was trained/programmed to harness each one’s unique skill set. Again, like I said above, a nice little twist on the norm in these books that enables me to play along, as well as the execution of the book in general. Really, it’s the little things that make this book work, and so much fun, like where our CNV has his internal, uh, “monologues” and each personality gets a special word balloon that has their weapon of choice sticking out of them. And there’s a lot of seamy black ops/espionage goings on to flesh out the story, also including some very witty, sometimes tawdry, wordplay that really makes this an enjoyable ride on top of the gimmick that drives it all.
As for the main attraction that brought me to this tri-polar dance, the sublime Riley Rossmo art? Still sublime BUT! with the caveat that as good as the art looks here, I kind of wish the water-colored look that is a mainstay on PROOF with his art had followed him here, as in CNV the “coloring” is just a bluish monochrome. Overall I guess it doesn’t matter, because the art style of his I love so much, which is one that loves to use its stencil lines to add a little “roughness” to the work, all while using great shading to fill out a very detailed picture, is still very much intact. I just think the full on coloring job makes it pop a lot more than the smattering of color we get here, as there does tend to be some excess of lines in his work that can make an image look a little heavy. With color those tend to become consumed, but here they occasionally just end up looking muddled. A very small complaint though, on a job by someone who has easily become one of my favorite artists in the industry in recent years.
COWBOY NINJA VIKING is one of those rare occasions where something that should be nothing but a guilty pleasure ends up being way deeper and better written than it probably deserves. I know that sounds a little back-handed, but it’s actually a great compliment as far as I am concerned and probably made for the biggest and best surprise I’ve had in my comic book reading in a good couple months now. Shockingly enough, I would daresay I am hoping for lots more action to come, because except for one poor bastard getting his head split like a sandwich bun, it was surprisingly adrenaline light, but the quick pace for the story and the witty writing still made it highly entertaining. Jaded as I have become as a comic book reader, what should have been a cheesy distraction instead turned out to be an extremely gratifying read that I am actively looking forward to more of. That in and of itself is a mighty feat these days, and I would like to thank the creative team behind this from the bottom of my cold dead heart. And, added bonus, I have an impromptu Halloween costume idea if need be. This book is just the gift that keeps on giving.
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.

MIGHTY AVENGERS #30

Writer: Dan Slott/Christos Gage Artist: Sean Chen Inker: Mark Morales Publisher: Marvel Comics Reviewer: Rock-Me Amodeo

If you didn’t go “Holy Crap!” by page two of this book, then you haven’t been reading comics long enough to appreciate the significance of what was going on.
Man, I can’t tell you how pleased I am with this book over the past year. After the “Invasion” event, I think it struggled to find itself. But this was supposed to be the bigger-than-life Avengers book, not the guys that hide out in someone’s apartment. These were not supposed to be the guys that fly to Harlem and stand around for a while. These were supposed to be the guys you call when the world, or the universe, needs saving.
And by gum, they now are. They rebuilt so gradually, and I had my hopes a few months ago, but I really didn’t see it coming until we arrived this issue. I admit, along the way, I wondered whether Hank Pym had lost it, what with his new Wasp persona. I was willing to ride it out because the writing was so strong (Jocasta opining about kissing the face of God, for example) and some of the plot twists just had me laughing (like Pym and Reed Richards in a pissing contest.)
But THIS issue…this issue just blew the lid off all that. Yeah, yeah, not sure I quite bought into Eternity’s Dr. Phil moment with Hank (of course, Dr. Phil IS a part of Eternity, so who’s to say who got what from whom?) but all the rest…man, it just makes me excited to see what happens next!
And all that is just about Hank Pym. The rest of the book: Hercules and Osborn, old Avengers meet Young Avengers meets classic Avengers (“call me a poltroon”)…this book just hit great beat after great beat.
And the artwork. Remember the fantastic artwork that jumpstarted NOVA into the upper echelon of Marvel’s monthlies? Well that guy is this guy. Sean Chen. ‘Nuff said.
This is definitely THE Avengers book. But Hank Pym has taken center stage, and I like it. I’ve had 25 years or so of Hank Pym, the self-doubting madman who created Ultron. The wife-beater. The loser. The unstable. The one-man pity party. The one who got an unwilling invite to any meeting of the “big brains.” Though not officially consigned to exile, Hank Pym has been, in some ways, the Avengers’ own version of “The Unspoken.”
But you know what I’m ready for? Hank Pym the scientist. Hank Pym the hero! Yes. And the Avengers…the mighty Avengers…they are back.

GRIMM FAIRY TALES HALLOWEEN SPECIAL # 1

Written by: Raven Gregory Illustrated by: Various Published by: Zenescope Entertainment Reviewer: superhero

I don’t really need any T & A in my comics. Especially not in my horror comics. Oh, I realize that T & A was a staple of many a slasher film in the late 70’s and early ‘80’s and it’s all fine and good if you want to show me a little flesh here and there with my hack and slash. But when it comes right down to it I’m not reading a horror comic to see some barely clad nymphette in a witch costume. Nope, if I’m reading a horror book you better scare me…or at the very least freak me out. Unfortunately, GRIMM FAIRY TALES does neither.
What’s the deal with the reject from “Bewitched” on the cover? Well, I guess she serves pretty much as the Crypt Keeper to this particular comic book story. See, she’s reading a scary story to a bunch of kids getting ready for a night of trick or treating. That’s pretty much the framing device for this particular book and I don’t know about you but if this little lady was dressed like that and trying to read me a horror story when I was a kid the only thing I’d be afraid of is trying not to let her catch me staring at her knockers the whole time. I mean, really, if you’re going to have someone read a scary story have that someone be, I dunno, scary?
But the problem with this book isn’t just the sexpot fantasy figure acting as narrarator, it’s the story she’s actually telling. What can I say? It’s pretty much a riff on W.W. Jacobs’s “The Monkey’s Paw”. Sort of a…what if “The Monkey’s Paw” didn’t have the brilliant ending that it did and dragged on into a silly and unoriginal horror tale that doesn’t really improve on the story it’s ripping itself off from? There’s a reason Jacobs ended the story the way he did and it’d probably have been better if the creators of this book had just left well enough alone and come up with something original of their own instead of trying to piggy back onto one of the greatest horror stories ever written.
The only saving grace here would be some of the art. I say “some of” because pages go between being very professional looking to downright amateurish depending on who the illustrator was. While the cover is a beautiful work of art nothing inside tends to match its professionalism. That’s too bad because if the whole book had had the capable look of the cover at least something would have saved this from being the bore that it turned out to be.
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 www.kristianhorn.com.

FVZA (FEDERAL VAMPIRE AND ZOMBIE AGENCY) #1

Writer: David Hine Artist: Roy Allan Martinez Publisher: Radical Comics Reviewer: Optimous Douche

This review is biased. Even before reading one word about the FEDERAL VAMPIRE AND ZOMBIE AGENCY (FVZA), a clandestine government agency that protects all of us normal folks from the dark forces of vampires and zombies, I was already in love with this book. You see, I’m a painted picture whore. Even on their worst days, the stylings of Alex Ross type artists make me coo, gurgle and drool like a toddler looking at a jingling set of car keys. Perhaps it’s an appreciation for the painstaking time it takes to craft these images, which Martinez does. Perhaps it’s the insane level of detail that seems to go into every scene from backgrounds to facial expressions, which Martinez does in spades. Perhaps I’m just easily amused, and again Martinez kept my eyeballs bathed in painted joy. Regardless of the reasons, when I saw the first panel of FVZA with a young nubile Kate Beckinsale-type heroine decked out in leather holding her Grandfather at gun point I was hooked.
Some will call FVZA derivative, an easy assessment when dealing with a mythology that has fueled the fears of man for hundreds of years. Yes, FVZA borrows from this vast history, but personally I found FVZA to be a much needed back-to-basics approach in dealing with the undead. From TWILIGHT, to TRUE BLOOD, to the god-awful VAMPIRE DIARIES on the CW, the concept of vampirism has been so diluted and distorted, vampires are no longer scary – instead they are laughable. Longing for love, still partaking in carnal pleasure, for fuck’s sake they can even go out in the sunlight with the only repercussion being the fact they glisten like a beautiful diamond. The modern vampire story has been defanged and defiled to the point of becoming a Saturday morning cartoon as opposed to the stuff of nightmares. Thankfully the FVZA is not only saving humanity from vampires and zombies, it’s also saving all of us that actually want to be frightened by these monsters instead of becoming weak in the knees and moist in our nether regions.
What impressed me most from a writing standpoint was how Hine transitioned the concepts of vampires and zombies from the fictional to the real. The opening pages of the book are like a history lesson, rewriting Rapunzel, the American Old West and WWII to establish vampirism and zombies as a disease--a disease that has been fought, inoculated against and seemingly eradicated over the course of time. The stories are delivered by one of the agents of the now defunct FVZA, Dr. Harold Pecos. Absorbing these tales are his recently orphaned grandchildren Landra and Vidal. Time passes, training montages mature the children to early twenty-somethings, and the story fast forwards to present day in a world where Pecos’ fears of the undead come across as just as irrational as someone in the real world being afraid of the Black Plague. Sure there’s a chance you could catch it, but thanks to vaccinations, vitamins and not sleeping with rats the chances are slim.
Naturally, the threats of the vampire and zombie diseases once again rear their ugly heads (wouldn’t be much of a story otherwise), but what sets this book apart is how cleverly they are woven back into a tangible threat. Taking a cue from 9/11, terrorists dump a strain of the zombie virus into a small Midwestern water reservoir. What I love about Hine’s takes on zombies is that they are no longer slack jawed and mindless, like housewives at Costco. They are conscious of their actions, able to reason, and it just so happens they also feed on flesh.
The reintroduction of vampires, while a bit more complex, was handled just as cleverly. In this world, like our own, goth kids that have no other real skills or talents glorify the vampire lifestyle and play vampire make-believe while shunning all of life’s real responsibilities. However, when several of these kids are turned they realize just how stupid and ridiculous their games of make-believe truly were. Vampires do not feel love. Vampires do not act like humans; hell without wigs and make-up they don’t even look human. Vampires have one sole purpose: to feed on the blood of humans. It also looks as though vampires are tired of hiding in the shadows and are ready to make a play towards dominating and controlling the human race.
This was a great first issue and I actually find myself a bit sad that FVZA is only slated to be a three issue miniseries. There’s a hell of a lot of fodder in this book for an ongoing series. Simply by giving zombies self awareness, Hine could craft a powerful army of the undead; zombies ruling the day while vampires control the night. It would require arbitration and the formation of a political structure the world has never seen. And once all the humans are slaves is when the fun could really start. I think by the simple fact I’m speculating the future of this title is a strong testament to this being an engrossing and (don’t forget) visually beautiful first issue.

Editor’s note: Want a second opinion on FZVA? Check out what Matt Adler had to say about the book from a few weeks back.

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."

JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #38

Writer: James Robinson Artist: Mark Bagley Inker: Rob Hunter Publisher: DC Comics Reviewer: Rock-Me Amodeo

Well. The Justice League finds itself yet again in the same quandary as the reader: why are we here now? Kudos to Bagley for drawing number gazillion in a string of a gazillion consecutive well-drawn books. No faulting Mark. As usual, he swung and hit.
As for the plot…well, I know, Robinson is setting up. Of course, that didn’t stop him from being the first guy I’ve seen both promote his other title AND simultaneously emasculate it (by revealing Vixen’s and Plastic Man’s injuries.) Ok, maybe he didn’t completely castrate his other book, but there’s a severed vas deferens in there somewhere. I know, it should make me care more about CRY FOR JUSTICE, but if you’re not buying it already, you’re probably not going to run out and buy it now. It’s Vixen and Plastic Man, for crying out loud.
Whoops, too much talking. Time for a random attack. And the only thing that felt more random than Despero dropping in at an abandoned League headquarters…in the exact hour the League was actually occupying it…was the “deus ex Zatanna” that salvaged the whole thing. Sigh. Well, at least it wasn’t another adventure with the Royal Flush Gang.
By the way, I’m not placing all this mess at Robinson’s feet. Given the editorial constraints that have to be in place due to “fill in current company wide event here” and an obvious difficulty in coordinating the…AGHH! Crap! I’m sorry, James and Mark, I can’t believe I’m being so negative on a book that has one of my favorite writers paired with one of my favorite artists.
C’mon, DC. You’re three years into what should be one of your company’s flagship products. Instead, we’re restarting the League yet AGAIN.
I don’t want a reboot. I don’t want a re-shuffle. I don’t want B-Listers.
This is the Justice League! I want some fricking majesty.

STAR WARS: KNIGHTS OF THE OLD REPUBLIC #46

Writer: John Jackson Miller Art: Brian Ching Publisher: Dark Horse Comics Reviewer: Mr. Pasty

What do you get when you take a homicidal parakeet with fingers that look like your grandpa’s cock, dress him in hospital scrubs and tell him to look mean in case anyone is watching? Why, you get the cover to STAR WARS: KNIGHTS OF THE OLD REPUBLIC (KOTOR) #46, of course. The Star Wars franchise is known for some weird looking creatures, but the mere sight of this artistic failure splashed across the cover is a pretty frank admission that this crew is plum fresh out of ideas. Does anyone find this feathery gremlin even remotely menacing? And what’s with the bizarre biped crossover? It’s as if the creatures from Sega’s ALTERED BEAST decided to dress up like the cast from TO WONG FOO and enlist. This is some hideous character design -- and considering this is the same brand that is responsible for the Sleestak-meets-Corky inspired GREEDO -- that’s saying something.
By the time I was done laughing at the special needs cover, I found my way inside the book – but only after I made a promise to myself to not let the abomination I was just subjected to distort my normally unsuccessful attempts to be objective. As it turns out, the bird-brain is named SNOUT, presumably because he has one, but at the risk of sounding obsessed with male genitalia, let me assure you his snout would be right at home dangling from an African Pygmy in the pages of National Geographic. And for a throwaway character he has an excruciating amount of dialogue. Perhaps the only thing he does right is fall on his sword, further puzzling me as to why he’s on the cover when the book features two incredibly hot babes that have curves in all the right places.
KOTOR has some nice looking panels once you get into the meat of the book.
Unfortunately the script is like a scrabble board after your dog runs into the table. There is so much dialogue to sort through and it’s peppered with random names assigned to far away creatures and distant locales. Comics are supposed to be fun; this one felt like homework. It doesn’t help that the main character is on the rag for three quarters of the book. When did the Jedi get so whiny? And despite the narrative’s best efforts, the hastily assembled and protracted speeches that litter this book sound like those two guys you knew in college who used to get high and contemplate the meaning of life.
I didn’t like this book. The Star Wars universe is ripe for the picking and I’ll concede that not every tale has to somehow honor the original trilogy. But when I’m reading a KOTOR book and I don’t get a light saber, the force, or at the very least a gratuitous Jabba flashback, then why am I reading it? I have certain expectations when I pick up a Star Wars comic book. Unfortunately KOTOR #46 failed to meet any of them.
Final word: Wordy and pretentious and lacking in any of the elements that make Star Wars fans so rabid. So then what’s the point? Other than another charitable donation to the Lucas war chest, there isn’t one.
Web heads who can’t get enough of Mr. Pasty’s word vomit are encouraged to watch him operate as Nostradumbass over at here. MMAmania.com. Love, hate and Mafia Wars requests should be directed here.

VINCENT PRICE PRESENTS: THE TINGLER #1-2

Writer: Mark L. Miller Artists: Alex Lopez & Niko Anaya Cover: Buzz McAdam Published by: Bluewater Comics An @$$hole 2-in-1 review by Matt Adler and BottleImp Editor’s note: This review has been reposted due to the fact that the book’s release was delayed until this week. You can pick this up in stores today!

BottleImp (Imp): The William Castle horror movies of the 1950s always reminded me of their contemporaries on the comics stands, EC’s horror comics. Both the films and the four-color counterparts gave their audience jolts, shivers, screams, but also laughter, as neither Castle nor EC publisher Bill Gaines took their work too seriously. Their version of horror was more akin to a roller coaster ride at the state fair—good for a few thrills, scary when you’re on it, but ultimately harmless. So it’s nice to see that same spirit of fun in Bluewater’s comic book sequel to Castle’s famed gimmick-enhanced movie THE TINGLER.
Matt Adler (Matt): I really wasn't familiar with any of the William Castle movies, beyond knowing that John Goodman's 1993 movie "Matinee" was a tribute to them, and made use of the "seat buzzer" gimmick. I was, of course, familiar with Vincent Price, but never really thought of him as an adventure hero until reading this. I wonder if Bluewater had to get permission to use his name and likeness?
Imp: I would hope that they got the permission from Price's estate. Bluewater's been doing the VINCENT PRICE PRESENTS comics for a little while now, so I would guess that they went through all the proper legal channels. Although grave-robbing Price's name would add a certain morbid twist to the series...
Anyways, back onto the comic at hand. As far as the writing is concerned, Miller has crafted a credible sequel to the original TINGLER story that really captures the tone and the energy of the 1950s horror flick. All the familiar archetypes are here: Vincent Price’s monomaniacal Dr. Warren Chapin, the scientist who dares to delve too far into the unknown; his sister-in-law Lucy, fulfilling the role of Damsel in Distress; the strong hero (Dave, Lucy’s husband and Warren’s assistant); and the slightly suspicious and unlikable hired man—who usually ends up dead before the third reel change. The plot of the comic makes a marked departure from the film by shifting the action to the African jungle, but this change in setting actually enhances that schlock-horror feel. It takes very little effort to imagine this story being acted out on the jungle stage on the backlot of Paramount, the set decorated with potted ferns and a poorly-painted backdrop of the night sky.
Matt: I agree, Miller gets the 1950s tone down pat. I thought it might be difficult featuring a "lost African tribe", since, let's face it, in an actual 1950s movie they would be horrible stereotypes, but Miller deftly skirts that problem and makes them credible and frightening antagonists. As for Huxley, the hired guide, the good doctor is such a jerk to him, I began rooting for him to hit Chapin over the head with a shovel and leave him there.
Imp: I definitely got that vibe, too! But that again is a credit to Miller's faithfulness to the original material-- even when Price played the protagonist, he still gave off that sense of smug superiority. Watch the original HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL (another classic Castle picture)-- there's another instance of Price as the thoroughly unlikable "hero." The only fault I found with Miller's story was that it ends rather abruptly. We have the group of explorers venturing into the unknown jungle, then the capture by the native tribe, then The End. I don’t know about you, but I couldn’t help feeling like this comic needed a third act.
Matt: That's so bizarre! Until you mentioned it, I didn't even realize that was it! I just naturally thought there had to be another issue coming. I agree with you, that is a rather abrupt conclusion. I guess perhaps it is meant to leave things to our imaginations, but after taking us on this journey with these characters, I'd like to have learned their fate (even if it wasn't a happy ending). Perhaps if the comic does well enough, they'll do a follow-up.
Imp: If Bluewater does decide to return to THE TINGLER and expand upon Miller's sequel, I would hope that they would find an artist whose work would be a better fit for the story. The visual aspect of this comic is lacking, in my opinion. For a plot centering around a creature that is the living embodiment of fear, there isn’t much fear to be found on the pages. Lopez’s drawing style just didn’t work for me, especially in combination with the color design—I found myself wishing that the art was either tighter and more realistic, which would have worked better with the carefully modeled color rendering, or that the cartoony style that Lopez’s art seemed to dance around was embraced more fully. A more stylized, less conventional manner of drawing might have brought this comic up to a different level. At the very least, it would have made each issue stand out better from the crowd.
Matt: It's a tough thing; Bluewater is a small publisher, so almost by definition, they're going to be hiring artists who are looking to hone their craft. I've certainly seen much worse efforts than Lopez's, so I can't be too hard on him, but of course I have seen more visually compelling horror comics. I'd love to have seen someone like Kyle Hotz on this book, but Bluewater isn't likely to be able afford him anytime soon. Overall, for a first professional effort, this isn't anything Lopez has to be ashamed of, and as he continues honing his craft, he'll eventually move up to the big leagues.
Imp: You're right, I'm just being super-critical, as usual. But in any case, I think we can agree that THE TINGLER is a fun throwback to the horror comics (and films) of yesteryear, right?
Matt: Indeed; it's an entertaining, engaging story with well-written characters, and if the worst we can say about it is that it leaves us wanting more, well, that's not too bad. Thumbs up.

GANTZ VOL. 7

By Hiroya Oku Publisher: Dark Horse Manga Reviewer: Scott Green

GANTZ is the Led Zeppelin of manga - thrilling, virtuositally geeky, and a bit misogynous.
In volume 7, opposite the table of contents is a sort of reworked Conan tableau, with the manga's teen hero standing on the top of a mound of fallen comrades, a weapon in each hand, bellowing rage into the onlooker. Had that image been the cover, it would have been a truth in advertising statement for what the volume presents. Hot on the heels of the previous outing, here's 200 pages of desperate and/or bloodthirsty recently deceased people, granted super strength via shiny black suits and obscene offensive power via sci-fi weaponry, engaged in a death match with a host of divinely angry Buddhist statues. I'm less and less confident that Oku is taking GANTZ anywhere insightful. Where the manga once seemed aimed to eviscerate adolescent fantasies, it now appears to be parading around in a wild rumpus, wearing the skins of those juvenile notions. Still, this morally unencumbered culmination of the earlier exchanges in brutality, rendered in an accentuation prone, 3d modeled, digitally inked process, is quite the spectacle.
GANTZ is not subtle in working in a video game metaphor for its action. People, such as disaffected teenager Kei Kurono are plucked from their moment of death, and reconstituted in a barren apartment, where a black sphere gives them super-powered equipment, instructs them to kill various species of aliens, teleports them to the urban locale where the fighting is done, then teleports them back to the room to award points for success. If these undead die again in their alien extermination sortie, they're perma-dead. If they survive, but are wounded, their bodies are fixed in the transport back.
Unlike previous missions where Kurono and two of his peers were saddled with creeps and liabilities, these time, their fellow non-deceased can contribute to the battle; there's a Laura Croft doppelganger with Muay Thai experience, a guy who's either military or more likely someone who died playing military otaku, a sniper and a number of species of martial artists, including a burly karateka in his gi (how all these young, healthy people might have died on this night is a bit of a conceit), a presumably MMA grappler dressed like he's been out pimpin' and a wild haired kicker (I can't identify the particular niche of this last one).
In contrast to prior combatants, this crowd is not quite guilty of the capital crime of stupidity. Nor are they entirely reprehensible people. But, their temperaments are well suited for the conflict for reasons beyond their martial prowess. There's sadism and exaltation of power...as when the military guy blows the legs off one of the attacking statues, taunts it, and asks it to beg. Other fighters embrace their gladiatorial role...the karate guy punches a statue... the stone deity catches the blow and snaps its attackers arm.. the dude in the gi shouts a battle cry, tackles the statue and mounts to to prep for further attach. Karate guy has a limb that is hanging by the skin, he's on top of something that can pulverize the human body into paste, but the two other martial arts still shout "that was awesome!"
GANTZ shares the misanthropic view of its teen protagonist. While it's eased up on knocking his self assessment down, it has not ceased to offer object lessons in how flaws in human nature can be survival liabilities. This feeds into the nastiness of the manga. Rather than gaffs made by horror victims as a conceit to rack up the monster's body count, in GANTZ, people die in graphically brutal fashion because our species propensities toward thoughtlessness, self overestimation, self delusion and distraction. The recent development in GANTZ is that its protagonists can give as good as they get and unleash their own, drilling through the head of the cyclopean Buddhist statue or sniping out the torso of a more person sized divinity. However, this is staged more as another outlet for disquieting behavior than it has been for catharsis or triumphant redemption.
Though he has yet to be triumphant or redeemed, Kei Kurono has proved able in battle, and more intelligent and composed than most. And, he's gotten the girl, with Laura Croft falling hard for him, apparently by virtue of him being the star of the manga. There are some interesting ideas evoked that aren't fully fleshed out due to the structure of the manga and its churn from one violent chapter to the next. Kurono is taken with the notion of being heroic and likes the idea of being with his peer, but he jumps on the chance to get intimate with Croft san because he's a horny teen and she's inexplicably interested in him. The groundwork for exceptional teensploitation is here, with an interesting dynamic between Kurono, with his propensity towards giving in to weaknesses and frustrations and his peers, who are laboring to manage the best they can, and with an interesting disparity between what Kurono he wants for himself/thinks of himself, and what he does. Yet, not only does Oku lack the time to develop this, he muddies it. Not only does GANTZ not have well realized female characters, they all seem to act strictly in service of the series. Love blooms on the battlefield movie personality doppelgangers like Sadako and Croft serving Oku's assigned function of hanging on Kurono. It's like one of the old Warner Bros. cartoons with Bugs Bunny mingling with the stars meets BATTLE ROYALE.
As a sucker for grossly violent manga, I've had to accept that gray matter as I'd hoped for in this red meat manga. It's sufficiently hooked me that I'm looking forward to seeing what grotesque surprised volume eight has in store.
Scott Green has been writing for AICN ANIME for over eight years. If you like what you see here and love anime & manga, be sure to check out his latest AICN ANIME column every week on AICN.

Ambush Bug here. You want more indie comics? Well, I gots some more indie comics. Check them out!

STRANGEWAYS: THE THIRSTY OGN Preview Highway 62

Max Maxwell's outlaw territory terror tales continues to be a quality read. I got this preview book from Maxwell himself. It's just a taste of what is to come from his follow up to STRANGEWAYS: MURDER MOON which unleashed werewolves on the Old West. This time around its bloodsuckers and the quality is just as good. Maxwell amps up the suspense and plays with vampire conventions without making it feel like this is a road well travelled on. His concentration on a pair of outlaws who are stumbling into this vampiric mess is nicely paces with a payoff that will make you jump back while reading it. I also really loved an especially well done sequence where a house-full of vampires try to entice a cowboy into their home during the daytime. The scene where an unwilling blood donor is roped and dragged into the home is chilling indeed. I'll be keeping my eye out for THE THIRSTY when its finished. This brief taste of THE THIRSTY was a...dare I say it...(ah what the hell, tis the season) a bloody good time.

THE SOCIETY OF UNORDINARY YOUNG LADIES #1-3 Sturdy Comics

If you're a child of the eighties like I am, then this is a book you cannot miss. Creator Wahab Algarmi and artist Joel Sigua snatch some of your favorite 80's television personalities and place them in the middle of a government conspiracy that starts with a botched mission causing the Chernobyl Incident and continuing with a government agency lead by General Richard Stratton the III (you know, Ricky Schroeder from SILVER SPOONS) and Charles & Buddy from CHARLES IN CHARGE picking an all new team of female @$$-kickers to fight the Communist Threat. No sitcom is left unrecognized: FACTS OF LIFE, THE A TEAM, DIFF'RENT STROKES, PERFECT STRANGERS, NIGHT COURT, PUNKY BREWSTER, hell there's even LASSIE (although if this is the eighties, maybe Benji would have been more apropos) and even sitcoms I never watched like SMALL WONDER and OUT OF THIS WORLD are all present and accounted for. Though I haven't seen Alf or Webster yet, I'm holding out for them to show up soon. It's THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN if Alan Moore's beard never allowed him to learn to read and he got all of his ideas from 80's sitcoms. Having grown up in this era, the waves of nostalgia hit me like a tsunami as I saw all of these old familiar faces cast in a spy thriller and taking advantage of all these comic booky conventions. And it's not just nostalgia at work here. Algarmi and Sigua show a lot of talent piecing these TV references together in an exciting and fun way. I hope to see more of this phenomenal series, especially when the next issue promises to be "a very special episode every parent should read with their children." Love! This! Book! Best indie surprise all year!

DAMES, DOLLS, & GUN MOLLS: THE ART OF ROBERT A. MAGUIRE Dark Horse Books

Though it's hard to review an art book, I can't help but acknowledge how awesome this one truly is. Robert A. Maguire painted the cover images for scores of paperback novels in the 50's and 60's. This book collects some of his best and even offers some rare step-by-step shots of his work in progress of women in distress and partial undress. His imagery of sexy females should be inspiration to many an up and coming artist. Heavily drenched in noir, these images of his dangerous dolls smolder off the page as they shoot steamy love bullets into your very soul. No fan of noir shouldn't have this on their shelf and with crime comics on the rise these days, it would behoove modern artists to check out this book to for inspiration. Highly recommended to up and coming artists and admirers of fine, yet sultry, art.

LAVA-ROID #1 Viva La Flarb Comics

With a tongue firmly planted in its cheek, Kevin Conn & Stephen Lindsay’s book doesn’t pull its punches when it comes to bringing the funny as well as coming up with creative characters such as Pillowfighter (he had his fists replaced with pillows in a freak accident), Heimlich the Nazi Bear (self explanatory), and my favorite, The Dad (who uses hypnosis to berate and lower the self esteem of his opponents). Sure, the characters here aren’t really developed past their inventively funny nom de plumes, but there’s a nice creative spirit to this comic. Lighthearted, but humor with enough bite to keep things interesting. Artist Leanne Hannah does a great job of making all of these goofy characters battle one another with a lot of pop. Her style is reminiscent of Phil Hester, John McCrea, and Joe Staton. This book is a preview of a live webcomic which is coming soon to an URL near you and can be found here. I’ll definitely be checking out the developments of Kevin Conn’s live action series on the web, but with the quality of this book, I’m hoping to see for fiery @$$-ed adventures of LAVA-ROID in print too.

Halloween Comics worth digging for!

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

Hello, kiddies—your ghoulish host BottleImp here again for a special Halloween edition of “Raiders of the Long Box,” ready to share the most terrifying tales dug up from the moldy old boxes that lurk in the dark, cobwebby corners of the comic shop. Here are some of my frightful favorites I’ve exhumed over the past year…

KILLING PICKMAN #1 Writer: Jason Becker Artist: Jon Rea Published by: Archaia, 2007

What do you get when you take a hardboiled crime drama and inject a small dose of H.P. Lovecraft? You get this little disturbing gem of a genre mash-up. While investigating a missing child case in Red Hook, NY (Lovecraft!), Detective Bill Zhu discovers that suspect Richard Pickman (Lovecraft again!) is a little more than your run-of-the-mill child molester. The writing on this comic by Becker is solid and the plot is well-crafted, but the real impact upon the reader comes from Rea’s nightmarish artwork. The scratchy, almost Expressionist linework, the muted color palette and the unconventional page compositions (which include scribbled words in the margins, collage, and the use of masking tape as a graphic element) all imbue KILLING PICKMAN with a disturbing sense of eeriness—think SE7EN as storyboarded by Dave McKean. I picked up this comic out of a bargain box for fifty cents, and would love to find th

Readers Talkback

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  • Oct. 28, 2009, 8:46 a.m. CST

    I toyed with the idea of buying all those Ostrander Spectres

    by rev_skarekroe

    But I thought better of it.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 8:48 a.m. CST

    I loved that Spectre series

    by hst666

    DC just had so much going on in the 90's.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 9:21 a.m. CST

    Insert questions of why AICN reviews comics here......

    by NomoredirtyjokespleaseweareYanks

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 9:22 a.m. CST

    Mighty Avengers

    by Laserhead

    Just checked out the first trade collection, and I was mighty disappointed. Hope it really has gotten better.<p>Who thought a good way to make Hank Pym popular was to dress him up as the leader of a campus marching band?

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 9:25 a.m. CST

    James Robinson is one of your favorite writers?

    by Laserhead

    WTF are you smoking? When was the last comic he wrote well? Not Superman, not Cry for Justice, not JL. And don't look back at Starman? Have you read that lately? It doesn't hold up well, just makes you realize how shitty every other comic in the 90s was, that this represented some kind of high point.<p>Robinson is officially a 'hackiest of the hacks' now, along with Jeph Loeb and Chuck Austen.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 9:39 a.m. CST

    Laserhead

    by Joenathan

    I'm with you, this book is not good. To me, Dan Slott's "have the characters describe what's going on as it happens" dialogue and heavy handed writing is the worst part of the way comics used to be. I was excited by the line-up and the potential of Hank Pym as a character, but I have found the ENTIRE book completely lacking.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 9:42 a.m. CST

    Robinson and the new Wasp

    by rock-me Amodeo

    Starman is exactly what I'm thinking of.<br><br> The way I look at writers, unlike artists, is what I call "The Spread." Some writers consistantly hit somewhere in the middle of the road. Their best is pretty good, their worst is not so bad. The spread is small. Other writers (think Morrison, for example) have a larger spread. Their worst is pretty awful. But their pretty good is excellent, and their best is stellar. I put Robinson in that second category and choose to judge him based on his best, not his average.<br><br> But, you know, that's just me. I respect your opinion.<br><br> Pym's costume could use a little tweaking. Something more befitting a scientist (but no permanent lab coat, please.) As long as they don't give him a baton...

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 9:49 a.m. CST

    So I guess there was more to the Wild Things Compition

    by Series7

    Then just name and address? I guess I should have sent in the picture with Spike's balls being gently cupped.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 9:58 a.m. CST

    New HULK this week!

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    As well as some other great stuff.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 10:05 a.m. CST

    rock-me

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    Where where you in the last talkback? Those of us with broad-minded views and who respect other opinions could have used a comment like that. <p> Look out, you might get blasted. All I did was say that I liked Loeb, Ed McGuinness, and Tim Sale. With you claiming that Robinson and Bagley are your two of your favorites, they're going to be burning you in effigy and calling for your execution pretty soon.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 10:09 a.m. CST

    Ostrander's Spectre

    by SpiderHarshaw

    I'm also trying to finish up this run so that I can have it hardbound. It's a shame that the book's sales fell off so badly toward the end of the run, because the last 8 or 9 issues are a bit rare, now. All I have left to go is #60. But yeah, it was a brilliant run, and compliments Ostrander's Suicide Squad beautifully. John Ostrander has to be one of the most underrated writers in all of comics.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 10:18 a.m. CST

    rock-me

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    Great Mighty Avengers review as well. <p> Joenathan's already got a burr in his britches, because it isn't by Bendis.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 10:19 a.m. CST

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  • Oct. 28, 2009, 10:22 a.m. CST

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    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

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  • Oct. 28, 2009, 10:23 a.m. CST

    Not in agreement with Rock-Me today

    by Homer Sexual

    Not so many reviews to comment on. I didn't read Justice League, because the previews of Cry For Justice were some of the worst written pages I've read in memory. Where I disagree with Rock-Me is in the line-up. He's gonna bring in big guns, like Rock Me wants (the newest Super/Bat/Wonder people) and the "original" 80's Titans. But I have always preferred a more offbeat grouping. Probably just to old to be interested in more adventures by the same old A-list group, and I am more interested in B-listers by nature (in all media, really). <p> But Mighty Avengers? Well, a few months back I was here defending it,but no longer. It is just dumb, to the point of seeming like it's written for children. The characters who originally interested me are either marginalized or gone already. Focusing on Hank Pym bores me to death. This whole issue just didn't work for me at all, and I can't believe I'm saying this, but....I am about to drop this one while still buying the Initiative and New Avengers. <p> On another note, last week's Simpsons was quite hilarious, with Montgomery Burns brain patterns in a computer that bonds with Lisa. Ok, I know most of you all don't read Simpsons, but it was hilarious. <p> Moon Knight, otoh, has also bored me already. I enjoyed issue 1, but suddenly it's Superman vs Batman in issue 2 and well, no issue 3 for me. <p> Spectre is not a character that interests me, but Ostrander's Suicide Squad is one of, if not the, best series ever imo, so maybe I'll check some of that out.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 10:31 a.m. CST

    Dick In Ass

    by DickInAss

    Dick In Ass

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 10:44 a.m. CST

    Mighty Avengers...

    by loodabagel

    I picked up those two issues with the Pym/Richards feud. A fun little romp, and I decided that maybe I should start following the comic. Unfortunately, the next issue proved to be some really uninteresting stuff. Something about Loki capturing the Young Avengers, and there was a magic curse or something. Can't quite remember. Slott and magic just don't go together. Slott magic is lame magic.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 10:46 a.m. CST

    Moon Knight and Suicide Squad

    by rock-me Amodeo

    concur on both points.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 10:55 a.m. CST

    As a Star Wars lover new and old...

    by Azlam Orlandu

    ...I'm sad to throw in the towel and admit that they're not running out of ideas, but the talent they have working for Lucas certainly is.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:02 a.m. CST

    Homer

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    You like B-listers more than A-listers, but you don't like Slott's Mighty Avengers? <p> I would say that rather than being "written for children" it's written for the long-time Avengers fans. But yeah, kids could definitely enjoy it too. Which they should, since superhero comics are generally "written for children." Not to mention that "written for children" doesn't have to mean "dumb." <p> What was it about Mighty Avengers that you found to be so dumb?

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:07 a.m. CST

    Laserhead

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    You were disappointed in the first Mighty Avengers trade paperback? You didn't even like the Frank Cho artwork? You seem like you might be hard to please. <p> New Avengers has started looking really great lately with the addition of Immonen. Plus, Bendis has thrown in a bit of action, which is a welcome change.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:08 a.m. CST

    how about we find Dick In Ass IRL

    by jiblets

    and beat the living shit out of him. With some people, getting the shit beat out of them does a world of good - certainly for the ones doing the beating.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:08 a.m. CST

    Slott's writing

    by Joenathan

    The dumb part is, for example, when there is an explosion and all the characters are being tossed about, there is always at least one character in the same panel saying something like: "Oh, no... it looks like it's going to explode... NAAARGH!" That's what is dumb.<br><br> -- Not to mention that "written for children" doesn't have to mean "dumb." -- Someone should send Slott a note and let him know...

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:12 a.m. CST

    Mighty Avengers

    by Joenathan

    Has long been a big fail, the whole run. Bad pacing, uneven scheduling, un-engaging plot lines, the she-bang: fail. I was hoping for something along the lines of Avengers Forever. Instead we get the retarded child of the worst that Image usually offers, coupled with the ham-handedness of the silver age. Big disappointment

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:15 a.m. CST

    the WHOLE she-bang...

    by Joenathan

    Damn lack of edit...<br><br>So, how come know main Marvel stuff lately? No Hickman, no Bendis, no Millar, No Ellis? Also, weirdly... No Blackest Night stuff. What the hell am I supposed to do with all these giant boxing glove jokes, huh? HUH?

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:16 a.m. CST

    Also

    by Joenathan

    Did anyone else hear the rumor that Miracleman is Osborn's secret weapon? Thoughts? Seemed to make sense... I mean, crazy sense, but still...

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:16 a.m. CST

    The only problem

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    that I had with the last Mighty Avengers were the grammatical errors on the first page. That kind of stuff always bothers me. Unnecessary imperfections that could have been prevented by an editor only marginally paying attention. Twice on the same page? The first page? Jeebus! <p> An interrogative is punctuated with a question mark, people. It's grade-school level grammar not rocket surgery. <p> Yeah, and Pym's costume could be better. But it's not a deal breaker.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:19 a.m. CST

    Joenathan

    by Mr.FTW

    I know dude, there is a whole spectrum of giant boxing glove jokes for you now and no outlet for them, it's a travesty.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:24 a.m. CST

    "when there is an explosion"

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    Well, I guess that just puts Slott one-up on Bendis, since at least there are explosions and characters being tossed about. <p> As opposed to a superhero comic where the superheroes sit around an apartment eating Chinese take-out with their masks off and talk about their feelings all issue. That's what's dumb. I guess not everyone has the imagination to write The Avengers. Someone should send Bendis a note and let him know. <p> Oh wait, Loeb already did when he totally served Bendis in that Wizard round-table discussion.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:28 a.m. CST

    A Question on FVZA...

    by OBESE_WAN_KENOBI

    I haven't read it, but if the zombies are thinking reasoning zombies who feed on flesh, doesn't that make them like decomposing vampires? In general, most monsters are not really all that scary. But I liked them more when they all had their own defined set of rules they followed. Nowadays everyone has to try and reinterpret them just to be different. But they are all starting to blend together. What's next sparkly emo zombies?

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:37 a.m. CST

    I'm not sure what New Avengers has to do with...

    by Joenathan

    Mighty Avengers being terrible, but whatever... Loeb "served" Bendis?!?!? Wow, I bet that must have been exciting... were they eating Chinese food while they were sitting around that table? Too bad Loeb can't translate dramatic interactions like that into a comic...

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:50 a.m. CST

    Mighty Avengers sucks,

    by Kontarsky

    Writer can't write Loki worth shit. As for James Robinson, Starman HAS held up well. It's just that ignorant dipwads who probably never liked it in the first place think it is cool to suddenly hate on a piece of good writing.<p>With that said, I think James' stuff is now a shadow of what it once was. However, as long as he still puts Shade in his stuff, it is the ONLY DC crap worth reading for me.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:55 a.m. CST

    Obese_wan-FVZA

    by optimous_douche

    When I say awareness on the zombies, think henchman level intelligence.<p> They can think, but no one is handing them a MENSA card.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:57 a.m. CST

    StarStruck being republished and re-mastered by IDW

    by jiblets

    http://tymstevens.blogspot.com/2009/09/starstruck-strikes-back.html StarStruck, in comic form, first appeared in Heavy Metal magazine in the mid-80's, and blew everyone who saw it away. It was gorgeous, first of all; Inks and Pencils by Michael William Kaluta, breath-taking colors by uncredited artists in Spain. But, as beautiful as the art was, the story and the dialogue was what kept your attention. Elaine Lee, the writer, created a science fiction universe of enormous breadth and depth, and that was just the backdrop for a cast of strong, mostly female characters that pre-dated and anticipated Tank-Girl, Zena, and all of Joss Whedon's creations by a decade or more. The above link will take you to a blog entry that can fill you in on the history of StarStruck's publication. I've been trying to tell people about this comic for 25 years, but it's hard to impress people with a book that's been in and out of print over the decades, and passed through the hands of four different publishers in four different incarnations. IDW is the latest, and they are giving the material the respectful treatment it deserves. If you are a fairly bright human being, male or female, you might want to give StarStruck a few hours of study. It is challenging, multi-layered, complex and ambitious beyond the scope of anything else ever attempted in the medium, before or since. You'll see what I mean. If you don't like smart, tough women, Space Opera, 30's era Ray-Gun Chic aesthetics, near Geof Darrow-level graphic detail, clever, snappy stage-play dialogue, epic scope, satire both broad and sharp, Byzantine twists and multi-generational political manipulation, then by all means don't bother. It's not for everyone. I'd rate it 'M for mature' and make sure your mom doesn't find it if you are under 18.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 12:04 p.m. CST

    jiblets

    by Sailor Rip

    write you paragraph then put <p_>(take out the underscore) below it, then go down to the next line and start a new paragraph.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 12:04 p.m. CST

    <p>

    by Sailor Rip

    put that in there

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 12:06 p.m. CST

    Arhhhhhh

    by Sailor Rip

    < p > with no spaces.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 12:07 p.m. CST

    by Sailor Rip

    This <p> will be <p> the result.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 12:20 p.m. CST

    Anyone Read Blackest Night Superman # 3

    by Mr.FTW

    I liked it's conclusion a little more than BN Batman # 3.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 12:21 p.m. CST

    Mas Avengers

    by Homer Sexual

    Ironically, I initially didn't buy New Avengers because I couldn't stand Wolverine being in yet another book, but eventually picked it up and liked it. Currently, it has B-listers I love: Ms. Marvel, Spider-Woman, Luke Cage, Mockingbird. <p> Mighty Avengers aren't A-list, not even really Pym, but the group he is using is rather boring. Hercules is one of my very top favorite comics, but he's underutilized in Mighty. Slott has taken the two least interesting Young Avengers, the extremely unlikable Cassie Lang and rather dull Vision, and added them. I thought the "Macroverse" was dumb, I thought "Scientist Supreme" was dumb (though the catfight with Reed Richards was mildly amusing in earlier issues). I don't like the way Jocasta is being used, although I do find the relationship with Hank to be a logical development. <p> I don't hate the book. I actually quite enjoyed the first few issues, was always defending them here. But now the book bores me. <p> I knew I'd get some feedback saying "written for children" but I went ahead and wrote it since we aren't kids on this site. And I did mean it in a derogatory way. I love Simpsons and Futurama, which are written for kids. Also enjoy Runaways, which totally seems to be aimed at adolescent girls. <p> It's all a matter of taste. I thought Slott was up and down on She-Hulk, but Great Lakes Avengers were awesome...the Christmas Special was excellent. Loeb is hit and miss for me as well. I am not blindly loyal or hating to anyone. <p> I even gave praise to the Chuck Dixon written latest Simpsons, and I have no love for Chuck Dixon (due to comments he's made that I wish I never read).

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 12:28 p.m. CST

    Ostrander/Mandrake SPECTRE was kick-ass!

    by GiggityGoo

    Man, I *loved* that book. Those dramatic two-page spreads when the Spectre would pronounce judgment on the bad guys were spectacular. Now I need to go pull out my back-issues and dive into it again.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 12:58 p.m. CST

    I love Mockingbird

    by Joenathan

    Her fight in New Avengers was great. I'm excited to see more of her and the WCA. Also, great costume update.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 1:47 p.m. CST

    Ostrander/Mandrake Spectre was GREAT

    by jsarnold513

    It's nice to see that getting some love. That's still one of my all-time favorite series. I wish DC would release it in trades, or that someone would have a good collection for sale on ebay. The first couple of story arcs (22 issues or so) were AMAZING!!!!

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 1:47 p.m. CST

    Homer

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    As you say, diff'rent strokes for diff'rent folks and all that. <p> My take on Mighty Avengers is pretty much a 180 from yours. I like the Macroverse, the Scientist Supreme, and the way that Jocasta is being used. I thought that Hercules was very well-utilized in the last issue, and that he had some really funny moments. <p> I also think that Slott was always "up" on She-Hulk, and that the Great Lakes Avengers wasn't very good. <p> We agree on the Pym/Richards "catfight" being amusing though. <p> We can also agree on not being blindly loyal or hating on anyone as well. <p> You're a better person than I am if you can give Dixon praise. I am of the opinion that Chuck Dixon is a total ass and should keep his mouth shut. It's crazy that they let him write The Simpsons!

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 1:55 p.m. CST

    I had about every issue of Slott's She Hulk...

    by loodabagel

    <p>It seemed like whenever I was ready to give up on the title, the next issue would blow me away. This seemed a tad obnoxious at the time, but re-reading them after a few issues of Peter David, they all seemed great. P-Dave kept me interested for about three or four issues.</p> <p>It is odd that they let Chuck Dixon write Simpsons comics.Was it the Halloween special? Those are always good. I love the variety of talent that gets pulled into them.</P>

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 2 p.m. CST

    Whoa!

    by loodabagel

    Treehouse of Horror collections are obscenely cheap on Amazon right now. Less than a dollar. Take note.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 2:09 p.m. CST

    Treehouse of Horror

    by Homer Sexual

    They are experimental, which is good, but often the experiments don't work out so well. This year's for example, was weak. The regular issues are way funnier. <p> I am surprised, I figured everyone would jump on me for being anti-Dixon. But he writes tons of Simpsons comics, one of the main people along with Ian Boothby. I will say that at least he keeps his personal views pretty much out of the Simpsons. <p> I love She-Hulk, but Slott was very erratic. I honestly preferred David's time, although it resulted in the book's cancellation. David can be pretentious, Slott overly cutesy.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 2:24 p.m. CST

    Let's try that again...

    by jiblets

    http://tymstevens.blogspot.com /2009/09/starstruck-strikes-ba ck.html <p> StarStruck, in comic form, first appeared in Heavy Metal magazine in the mid-80's, and blew everyone who saw it away. It was gorgeous, first of all; Inks and Pencils by Michael William Kaluta, breath-taking colors by uncredited artists in Spain. <p> But, as beautiful as the art was, the story and the dialogue was what kept your attention. Elaine Lee, the writer, created a science fiction universe of enormous breadth and depth, and that was just the backdrop for a cast of strong, mostly female characters that pre-dated and anticipated Tank-Girl, Zena, and all of Joss Whedon's creations by a decade or more. <p> The above link will take you to a blog entry that can fill you in on the history of StarStruck's publication. I've been trying to tell people about this comic for 25 years, but it's hard to impress people with a book that's been in and out of print over the decades, and passed through the hands of four different publishers in four different incarnations. IDW is the latest, and they are giving the material the respectful treatment it deserves. <p> If you are a fairly bright human being, male or female, you might want to give StarStruck a few hours of study. It is challenging, multi-layered, complex and ambitious beyond the scope of anything else ever attempted in the medium, before or since. You'll see what I mean. <p> If you don't like smart, tough women, Space Opera, 30's era Ray-Gun Chic aesthetics, near Geof Darrow-level graphic detail, clever, snappy stage-play dialogue, epic scope, satire both broad and sharp, Byzantine twists and multi-generational political manipulation, then by all means don't bother. It's not for everyone. <P> I'd rate it 'M for mature' and make sure your mom doesn't find it if you are under 18.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 2:28 p.m. CST

    thanks Sailor Rip

    by jiblets

    that did the trick.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 2:30 p.m. CST

    mad skills

    by Laserhead

    I'm talking about the first trade under the new direction-- post-Invasion, with John Philip Sousa as the leader. It stunk pretty bad.<p>The first Bendis Mighty Avengers trade benefitted only from the Cho artwork, which helped elevate the bad story.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 2:37 p.m. CST

    Starman hasn't held up well

    by Laserhead

    And I'm pretty sure I'm not an ignorant dickwad who never liked it in the first place. I recently read Starman Omnibus Vol. 1- 3. The pacing is poor throughout, the digressions and first-person soliloquies are usually indulgent, hackneyed sentimentality, The Shade is the most interesting character, and maybe most of all, Jack Knight is a pretentious hipster asshole. The character's a narcissist staring at his navel and picking his goatee, and pretty soon you realize that's what the writer of the series was doing.<p>It was good back then because so much around it sucked so hard, and because at 17 one is more sympathetic to narcissistic, navel-gazing young men. Reading it now, all the things that make Robinson's writing so unbearable now-- the wildly inconsistent characterizations, the stupid contrivances, the boring pacing, and most of all the ostentatious, ridiculously ham-fisted dialogue --it's all there in Starman, just not so pronounced... sort of informing things. It wasn't a terrible series, and it did some neat things with Golden Age DC history, and at 17 it was cool to see a guy that looked like Jack Knight be a super-hero (actually, that part still works). But the main of the series is actually pretty weak.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 2:59 p.m. CST

    Starman..

    by Homer Sexual

    Is ok. Never read it in the 90's, though I was reading a ton of Vertigo, etc, back then. Nowadays I don't read one single Vertigo title. <p> I read Starman Omnibus One but it took a long time, though I liked it. I bought Omnibus Two but haven't even started it. I don't find it annoying at all, but nor is it compelling. I'd give it a "B." <p> Sandman, Sandman Mystery Theater...those hold up very well. X-books, not so much.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 3:13 p.m. CST

    Homer...

    by loodabagel

    Thanks for the heads up regarding this year's special. Last year's was alright, even if the Jaws spoof was a little bland. Or was that 2007? Eh, whatever. However, I have an older collection "Spine Tingling Spooktacular." There's some great talent in it-Sergio Aragones, Hillary Barta, Peter Kuper doing The Metamorphosis (What else) and a lot of little one or two page stories, including a great Where's Waldo-type 2 page spread of Kang and Kodos invading Springfield. A lot of fun, imaginative stories instead of the reference-whoring movie parodies we've been getting on TV for the past decade or so.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 3:16 p.m. CST

    Vertigo

    by Joenathan

    That's interesting... A while back, I used to read almost exclusively Vertigo and now... Zero. What happened? Is Vertigo still around?

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 3:30 p.m. CST

    "I don't read one single Vertigo title. "

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    Scalped is really good. It's the only one I read.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 3:33 p.m. CST

    Laserhead

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    That makes more sense then. How could anyone dislike Cho? While it's true that the Slott run was off to a slow start with so-so artwork, it's really gotten better.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 3:42 p.m. CST

    You really should be reading Vertigo books.

    by SleazyG.

    FABLES is still great, THE UNWRITTEN is the best thing Mike Carey's done and their best new title in a few years, AIR is unique but still deals with subject matter appropriately in Vertigo's wheelhouse, and FILTHY RICH is probably the best thing I've read by Azzarello.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 3:46 p.m. CST

    I read the first Scalped trade...

    by loodabagel

    I liked it, but I can't say I loved it. Does it get better? Or is there something that I'm just not getting? That's how I feel about Brian Wood. I wasn't that impressed by the second Northlanders trade and Demo left me feeling a little unfulfilled. I agreed with whoever wrote the introduction that the stories kept getting better, it's just that the first few weren't that interesting.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:02 p.m. CST

    Fables, Mike Carey, Vertigo

    by Homer Sexual

    I read Fables forever, and when the big War finally, at last, ended, I dropped the book. I don't really care about the characters and find the whole thing too militaristic for my taste. I enjoyed it for the first four or five years, got sick of it, feel Willingham shows too much of himself in the book and don't plan to read it again. <p> Mike Carey isn't bad, but Lucifer was deadly boring. Seriously, death by boredom. I know this is contradictory, but I don't pick up his work in general because I figure it will bore me. <p> Azzarello is another writer who is fine in small doses, but he seems very one-dimensional tough-guy crime oriented, and he also bores me. <p> Old, old guy that I am, I'd rather re-read my old, awesome Vertigo than new mediocre stuff. Both Gaiman's Sandman and Mystery Theater still read awesome, despite the weakness (IMO) of Gaiman's more recent work.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:09 p.m. CST

    Jog my memory

    by Joenathan

    Oh yeah, Fables. Those last few posts totally reminded me of all these books I used to get. I read the hell out of Fables until about the same time as Homer, then I dropped it. DMZ, I also read the first three or four years, then got bored and dropped it. Losers and 100 Bullets I stuck with and then eventually got tired of them, but I don't remember why, but then... maybe thats indicitive of the problem I had with them. Y the last man... hmmm... I read the trades, but you know what my problem with that book was? Yoric is such a fucking douchebag pussy and I don't mean that he should be all: "WOOO! I'm the last swinging cock in the world, let's get to fucking, ladies!" kind of way, I just mean that he's sooooo fucking whiny. I read that book and hope Yoric dies every single issue. I hate that stupid little magic trick fucker. Douchebag. <br><br>I keep hearing good things about Scalped. I have to remember to pick up a trade.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:18 p.m. CST

    Scalped

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    Is definitely a comic that builds. It's a great crime comic. If you like crime fiction I highly recommend it. I'm not really familiar with Brian Wood myself.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:22 p.m. CST

    Homer

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    Sandman Mystery Theater was, is, and shall always be great.<p>I don't read Fables for the same reason that I don't read Chuck Dixon comics... I just don't like the idea of giving a big jerk like that my money.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:24 p.m. CST

    Y rocked!

    by Homer Sexual

    OMG! I loved that book, one of my all-time favorites. It wasn't perfect either though, some arcs were better than others. Overall, though, it would be one of my top ten of this decade, for sure. <p> As far as Yorick, I can see where Joe is coming from. I loathe alpha types, but sometimes a character swings too far on the passive/wimpy side. Yorick was, yeah, rather whiny. But still...awesome character. <p> Also, um, he gave me an extremely useful phrase "I'm a shower, not a grower" Perhaps you all heard that before, but I hadn't.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:25 p.m. CST

    Love Scalped, too

    by Laserhead

    I read it in trade and really, really enjoy it that way. It's got a slow fuse, but now and then something crazy happens, and even when it doesn't, the characters and atmosphere and drama and art are all top-notch.<p> I gotta disagree with Sleazy about Azarello's 'Filthy Rich.' I thought it was the worst thing Azarello's done, and I say that as a fan of pulp noir who owns every trade of 100 bullets.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:26 p.m. CST

    I heard a rumor that The Sentry

    by Laserhead

    Is actually Marvelman. He'll remember who he is and cut his hair.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:31 p.m. CST

    Yorick Being a Douchebag...

    by optimous_douche

    Was kind of the appeal for me. Last guy on Earth, essentially the man who will be considered Adam in 2000 years, likes magic adn hates confrontation.<p> I just find it really funny, not sure why...

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:31 p.m. CST

    Y

    by Mr.FTW

    Y was a great book book but I got a little tired of everyone and everything being monumentally messed up. (Spoilers) And I don't mean after all the guys died, I mean things we learn about from before. Yoric didn't need to have been sexually assaulted by the schoolyard bully and his sister didn't need to be molested by their granddad. It was things like that, that keep it from being an all time great for me. Vaughan just pushed the envelope with that stuff too much for me at times.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:31 p.m. CST

    Laserhead

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    Everything about Scalped reminds me of a high quality HBO drama such as The Wire or Deadwood. <p> Everybody should be reading it. <p> I guess that the Sentry does become more redundant once MM shows up, but that Quesada picture of MM that's been out for a while now doesn't make him look as muscular as The Sentry. Also, The Sentry has a long back story that they've worked into continuity. It would raise the question: When was he MarvelMan?

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:32 p.m. CST

    "Scientist Supreme? But I'm a wife beater"

    by cookylamoo

    "Don't judge the Universe by your paltry Earth standards. Wife beating is held as a virtue throughout the universe. Why, I beat my wife Eternia, religiously. It keeps the whole of existance working smoothly."

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:33 p.m. CST

    Y

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    I read the first trade paperback and I was out. I couldn't understand the appeal. I thought it seemed kind of boring with mediocre art.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:37 p.m. CST

    and more Y

    by Homer Sexual

    Mr. FTW, you are totally right. Those are perfect examples of weak spots in the book. <p> Mad Skillz, I can see why you dropped it. I read individual issues, but it took a while to get going. Kind of like, maybe, Invisibles, takes a while to get into it. For example, at first I thought the art was bland but over time I felt it was perfect for the book. <p> Too recent to say if it's an all-time great, but definitely one of the decade's best. What would you all say was better during the 00's? <p> I think Seven Soldiers was my #1 favorite. For whatever reason, I just loved it.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:38 p.m. CST

    Sentry

    by Joenathan

    He also existed in the MArvel Universe as a comic book written by Paul Jenkins, so maybe the answer is in there somewhere, but it's been so long since I've read that arc that I forget the nuamces. No, I think they're seperate entities. Rival Supermen in the Marvel Universe, both unhinged. Marvel could use that level of crazy, all-powerful chaos. Bendis is claiming that the end of Seige will seriously change the Marvel U forever and claims (we'll see) that he doesn't mean that in a totally hyped kind of way. Miracleman would fit in with that.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:40 p.m. CST

    Homer

    by Joenathan

    I think it was "GROWER, not a shower" not the other way around

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:40 p.m. CST

    Spectre Horror

    by Gislef_crow

    If you want the Spectre as horror, read the Fleisher/Aparo Adventure run (reprinted in Wrath of the Spectre). If they made it now, it'd be a Vertigo title. They don't pretend he's a superhero, or part of the DC Universe, or whatever. He just goes around like a cross between The Crypt Keeper, Charles Bronson, and Freddy Krueger. The issue with the creepy mannequin-obsessed dummy maker is particularly creepy (and features a panel of cheesecake with the lead's girlfriend Gwen tied up in her underwear to boot). Watching a guy get killed by a giant rubber duck is also a lot more scary than you'd think from the description. In any case, check out a decent review and panels here: http://tinyurl.com/ygnqkb3

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:41 p.m. CST

    I love Seven Soldiers

    by Joenathan

    Although, I wish Grant could have held it together mentally a little better at the end.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 4:47 p.m. CST

    oops!

    by Homer Sexual

    Yes, my backwards saying wouldn't make much sense. My bad.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 5:16 p.m. CST

    Y The Last Man...

    by loodabagel

    <p>is possibly my favorite comic book ever, so also the decade's best, along with the some more of Vaughan's work-Ex Machina, Runaways, Pride of Baghdad and The Escapists. Fables is up there. I've only read the first post-war trade, and I'm curious to see where the book goes. I'm still on board at the moment, but I'll have to see how this "Great Fables Crossover" pans out. Grant Morrison has done some great stuff this decade-We3, All Star-Superman, New X-Men, and I love Seaguy, but it hasn't had as big an impact on comics as the others have. Was David Boring released this decade? I'm not sure, but if so, I'd call it a classic. That and "The Death Ray" are some of the strongest stuff Dan Clowes has done. Having only read the first two trades, I'm still gonna go ahead and say Powers is great, along with Ultimate Spider-Man and Daredevil-Bendis and Brubaker. Of course, there's much more stuff out there that I'm probably forgetting. </P> <P>I'm pretty sure the kid who felated Yorick wasn't the town bully. I read it like the two were friends, and the other kid just took "Show me your penis" game too far. They do after all, do the darndest things.</P> <p>Homer, it would make sense, it'd just be redundant, and a tad egotistical. You don't write for Entourage, do you?</P>

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 5:18 p.m. CST

    Scalped...

    by loodabagel

    <p>Is next on my list. I think as soon as I've finished collecting The Sandman, and got a copy of From Hell, I'll pick up Scalped.</P> <p>Oh! Scott Pilgrim is also a modern great. As well as Paul Jenkin's and Jae Lee's Inhumans. And I guess Garth Ennis's Punisher. And 100%. And Persepolis. And The Ultimates.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 5:21 p.m. CST

    I thought the New Avenger stood around in Detroit...

    by SlowBurn

    Just sayin'...

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 5:29 p.m. CST

    I think Seige's major changes...

    by loodabagel

    Will result in the New Avengers standing around in Cleveland. So stoked!

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 5:37 p.m. CST

    Homer

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    It's hard for me to say what's better than Y in the 00's, since I haven't read Y. I'll have to go back and check out the full run sometime. <p> For now I'll just say Loeb's Hulk.

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 5:56 p.m. CST

    Too much spare time

    by MonkMayfair

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 5:58 p.m. CST

    Leads to this

    by MonkMayfair

    Sorry for the double post.... http://tinyurl.com/yhbjbtc I don't hate the X-Men, but I love the idea of so much raw material...

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 6:13 p.m. CST

    And Astonishing X-Men...

    by loodabagel

    and JMS's Spider-Man and The Walking Dead and Planetary and 52 and X-Force/X-Statix and The Umbrella Academy...

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 6:24 p.m. CST

    The Society of Unordinary Young Ladies

    by RenoNevada2000

    I see that some of it is up at the website you linked to, but is it available in floppies?

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:45 p.m. CST

    Y is OK

    by Laserhead

    The beginning and ending were great. A large section of the middle 40 issues was quite bad.<p>And you can't talk about Morrison and just involve the 2000s. You have to start back in '83, you know, when Miller was still making his bones on Daredevil. Think of it this way: Grant Morrison is the same generation as Alan Moore. Then you begin to see how ridiculous it is to compare him, as a writer with a writer's career, to somebody like Bendis. (Bendis?! Bendat!!)

  • Oct. 28, 2009, 11:48 p.m. CST

    And "grower, not a shower" was a terrible line

    by Laserhead

    I cringed. It's like saying, "Hey, even though I have a microscopic penis, I'm a great lover, because I eat pussy!"<p>Come to think of it, that's some kind of geek fantasy, isn't it? That women will forgive your lack of cock because you (like every man in the Western world) eats pussy... It's the Kevin Smith fantasy. Anyway, a stupid line in a brilliantly-conceived, but frequently stupid, comic. Y.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 4:35 a.m. CST

    Laserhead

    by hst666

    Two things. (1) "Grower not a shower" actually means you are much more substantial when erect than when flaccid. It has nothing to do with oral sex. And it also does not mean you have a microscopic penis. Of course, I would never use a tired cliche like that in the first place, and besides I am hung like a horse (as far as you know) <p><p> (2) The majority of women do not orgasm from vaginal stimulation alone, but also require a significant amount of clitoral stimulation. As Ron Jeremy has said, he's made a lot more women come with his mouth than with his cock.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 4:44 a.m. CST

    Vertigo books

    by hst666

    Scalped, Air, Fables, Jack of Fables, and the Unwritten are all good. I am reserving judgment on Greek Street. <p><p>Homer, I am not sure what Willingham has said, other than he leans conservative that pissed you off, but the personal beliefs of a writer have never affected whether I read them or not. I am very liberal, but I like Willingham's writing, so I read his stuff. I have never found Dixon to be that interesting, regardless of his views.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 6:15 a.m. CST

    hst

    by Laserhead

    I know what the line means. It's a pathetic thing to say from a man with a small dick. Which is why I related it to the geek-prayer about cunningulus.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 9:30 a.m. CST

    I still hate Yorick

    by Joenathan

    and his mealy mouth whining. Throw in the magic... God damn, I hate him.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 9:31 a.m. CST

    hst666

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    With a screen name like that, it's hard to tell if you're liberal or not. Ha! <p> In fairness to Homer, all that he said was that Willingham "shows too much of himself" in Fables, and it was I who said that I didn't like that he was a jerk/conservative. <p> Saying that he "leans conservative" is a bit mild from what I've heard. <p> Maybe someday I'll read the whole Fables series from the library, but I'm certainly not going to give my money to a guy like that, because I would be more or less supporting his worldview. <p> It's the same sort of thing as boycotting Whole Foods because their owner supports not giving rights to gay people. Something like that.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 9:36 a.m. CST

    Bendis vs. Morrison

    by Joenathan

    You can't compare them, they're too different. Both great, but too different. <br><br>But if you were going to... Here's two things: <br><br>1. Years from now, when it's all said and done, this whole ass-kicking, awesome movie, selling like crazy era of Marvel comics? It's going to be known as the Bendis Age. There is no Morrison Age at DC. <br><br>Which leads to #2. Bendis can go long fom, big time. Look at Ultimate Spider-man, the Avenger Titles, Alias, Daredevil, etc. Morrison starts to implode around issue #11. He's awesome in short bursts, but make him commit to a second year and he crashes and burns.<br><br>Bendis

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 9:38 a.m. CST

    I've never read any Willingham statements

    by Joenathan

    What has he said? Generally, I avoid interviews because of that reason. It's like Actors, even if I agree with your worldview, I pay you to pretend to be a superhero, not where a retarded home-made "no blood for oil" t-shirt, so just get back in your cage, dancing monkey, until we call for you to entertain us again.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 9:52 a.m. CST

    I don't know, Joe...

    by Homer Sexual

    I can't say that this time will be referred to as the Bendis Age. An argument could be made that it's the Millar age, and I'm probably forgetting someone. Time will tell. While you know I like Bendis, I don't think his work will hold up ten-twenty years from now. But hopefully I'll still be around to find out. <p> The late 80's might be considered the Morrison age, he seems to be the pre-eminent person from that time, as Gaiman was the early 90's and Liefeld/MacFarlane the mid-90's. Frank Miller fits in there somewhere, too. <p> But beyond all the originators such as Kirby, Ditko, Shuster etc etc, the only modern people who really represented their time was the early 80's, which was definitely the Claremont/Byrne period. Ironically, they're both awful now, but they certainly ruled their era more than anyone I can think of since then, including Bendis. <p> ps. I am about to go on vacation again so I ordered Alias vol 3 but not 4 because it costs like $40 and is apparently hard to find. I forgot to ask my LCS last night, darn it.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 9:52 a.m. CST

    Ultimate Spider-Man

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    Because it has lasted so long it's good. That sounds solid. <p> Let me try one: <p> Because Bagley draws comics fast and gets them out on time, that makes his art good. <p> Wow, you could almost make that work for anything! <p> I suppose actually thinking about stuff and having a well-developed aesthetic has really been a waste of my time. I have now seen the light!

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 9:56 a.m. CST

    Bendis

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    The future Claremont! <p> I don't think that you can assign any specific creators name to a period of time. Notice that you added Frank Miller as an afterthought, and didn't even mention Alan Moore.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 10:02 a.m. CST

    JMS Spider-Man

    by Mr.FTW

    It was a good run but will always be tainted by the editorial "genius" of Joey Q and his mandate that Gwen Stacy become a whore.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 10:04 a.m. CST

    True

    by Joenathan

    There is also Bru and Millar, too, I'm not forgetting them, BUT... I think the seeds for what Marvel is doing now all started in Bendis's Daredevil and in Disassembled and this is argueablly Marvel's marquee era. Also, Millar had an equal hand in creating the Ultimate U, as well, but Bendis is the one who has continuously been it's cheif custodian. And his Spider-man run is practically unprecedented.<br><br>I agree, Miller has his time, but I think that's always acknowledged. And true, Vertigo and Image were mid nineties, but late 80's Morrison? For what? Hey, I love Animal man and Doom Patrol as much as the next comic geek, but let's not kid ourselves by claiming they were any kind of splash at the time. <br><br>What Bendis did 10 years ago was both popular AND styulistically influential.<bbr><br>Of course, this isn't to say that he doesn't have flaws, because yeah, sometimes his dialogue skews a little too Bugs Bunny meets forced SNL comedy, but hey... like you pointed out: Byrne, Claremont, Millar, they all definately have flaws, ones that have become more apparent as the years go by, but does that lessen the stuff they did when they were great? No. <br><Br>And I would say that Bendis has ruled this era equally as strongly as any of those guys did theirs. The proof is on the racks

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 10:06 a.m. CST

    JMS

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    The only reason that I bought his Amazing Spider-Man run was for the artwork. <p> I don't think that Norman paid Gwen, did he? <p> I guess not being able to remember isn't a good sign (for the story).

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 10:11 a.m. CST

    "the seeds for what Marvel is doing now"

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    All started with X-Statix (and Skrull Kill Krew). <p> You had a typo there. You meant to say "his ULTIMATE Spider-Man run." <p> Unprecedented? In no way that I can think of. <p> I take that back. The longest running crappy marketing ploy ever!

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 10:12 a.m. CST

    To have an era named after you

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    you should at least have to create something.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 10:27 a.m. CST

    You sound so bitter,

    by Joenathan

    How many times did Bendis fuck your Mama? A whole bunch. I bet that's the answer, isn't it? A whole bunch.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 10:49 a.m. CST

    Not bitter at all.

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    Just having fun discussing Bendis. <p> You, on the other hand, sound kind of wound up. <p> Bringing mother-fucking into a conversation about comic books and all. <p> You're really obsessed with the guy, aren't you? Should he be worried? I think that he's married and has a family, so I'm thinking that you don't really have a shot.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 11:08 a.m. CST

    No, you sound bitter

    by Joenathan

    I've worked in a comic shop before, sir, so let me assure you, I have heard what bitter sounds like and you sound bitter.<br><br>Also, I totally have a shot with Bendis, I am SUPER hot, ok?

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 11:26 a.m. CST

    OK

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    I may *sound* bitter, but my intention was to insure you that I'm not. <p> While you seem to sound bitter and actually be bitter as well. <p> Worked in a comic shop, eh? That's obviously why you're so well adjusted then, and bring up fucking someone's mother when they don't share all of your views on your favorite hack writers. <p> What was it that I said that sounded particularly bitter to you?

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 11:35 a.m. CST

    Morrison vs Bendis?

    by Laserhead

    Pha. The Morrison Age of comics extends from 1983 through our modern times. Morrison can't do long form? WTF? The Invisibles? Animal Man? Doom Patrol? New X-Men? JLA?<p>Years from now one of these men will be remembered as one of the greatest artists to ever utilize the medium, and the other will be remembered as the fat guy who really wanted to write TV shows.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 11:37 a.m. CST

    Actually, Morrison started the "new marvel" thing

    by Laserhead

    with New X-Men, Marvel Boy and years earlier, Skull Kill Krew. Mad Skillz is right about X-Statix, too.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 11:38 a.m. CST

    Laserhead

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    Uh-oh. Somebody's about to tell you that Bendis fucked your mother and you're bitter. Brace yourself for the scathing criticism. <p> I guess it's easier than acutally defending Bendis.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 11:39 a.m. CST

    "actually" defending Bendis

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    sorry about the typo

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 11:44 a.m. CST

    Laserhead

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    Yeah, X-Statix got the ball rolling for bringing Marvel out of the toilet... and yeah, Bendis just used Skrull Kill Krew as the basis for his Secret Invasion. <p> But really, Marvel's new direction is just their old direction. They're just trying to make their line more like it was in the sixties. Which is a good thing in my opinion. <p> Joenathan must have his panties in a twist with people telling him that DC guys ushered in his favorite Marvel era!

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 11:55 a.m. CST

    we_pray

    by Joenathan

    It was just a feeling. I'm pretty intuitive, you know.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 12:02 p.m. CST

    Morrison

    by Joenathan

    I'm not saying I don't love Morrison, because I do. He's awesome, but come on... JLA fell apart after Rock of Ages (which was awesome).<br><br>Invisibles? Ok, I'm inclined to agree with you there, because I love that book so, although some might say that Volume 3 sagged a little here and there.<br><br>New X-men? Let's talk about Magneto taking over New York and the death of Jean Gray... on second thought, let's not. I did love the future glimpse episodes that came out of no where, even though they are a great example of one of Morrison's slides in narrative instability. <br><br>Animal man and Doom Patrol were great, yes, but I hold that both of those started to unravel towards the end when Morrison obviously began to loss interest.<br><br>Morrison is, was, and will always be one of the greats, if only for We3 and All-star Superman alone, let alone all his other great stuff, what I'm saying is that he has yet to have a LINE defining run at either Marvel or DC the way Bendis has, regardless of what you may think of the quality of that work.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 12:05 p.m. CST

    Morrison and New Marvel

    by Joenathan

    See, I think Morrison abandoned all that shit. He made it up and then left it behind. Bendis, Millar, Bru and those guys came along with their stuff, saw all those neat toys that Morrison dropped and then incorporated them all into one big picture.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 12:15 p.m. CST

    "It was just a feeling. I'm pretty intuitive, you know."

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    I'm guessing that in your fantasy Bendis is the pitcher and you're the catcher.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 12:16 p.m. CST

    I like Football

    by Joenathan

    I guess you're not as intuitive as me...

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 12:17 p.m. CST

    Kids! Kids!

    by loodabagel

    </P>1. Skrull Kill Krew first appeared in 1995. Also, it wasn't a very good comic. X-Xtatix wasn't written by Grant Morrison. Why don't we credit Bill Jemas for ushering in the modern age of comics? It was his editorial decisions that brought us New X-Men and Ultimate Spider-Man. But if that's not an option, I'm gonna have to side with Joen. Millar and Brubaker have both done some significant work at Marvel, but I think Bendis set the stage for them. Bendis might not be the crown prince he once was, but Daredevil and Ultimate Spider-Man both embodied what people hate and love about modern Marvel-longer stories, people talking about stuff, character-changing plot twists. And let's not forget that it was Bendis who brought back the crossover with House of M, a story I never read, but one that proved to just be too little, too late. Honestly, I'd prefer it if Morrison created the modern age of comics, because that would mean Chris Claremont wouldn't have retconned all his X-Men stories.</P> <P>Ultimate Spider-Man is a good comic book because it's been consistently good for a really long time. War of the Symbiotes was bad, Ultimate Six was a little underwhelming, and the Deadpool story was dumb. The other 19 volumes are all good.</p> <p>The pirate ship story was the only part of Y The Last Man that I didn't like. One Small Step was drawn out, but what do I care? I read the trade.</p>

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 12:22 p.m. CST

    Don't accuse Morrison of abandoning shit.

    by loodabagel

    That's just silly. Did Bendis abandon Daredevil when he stopped writing it? Did Whedon abandon Ord and SWORD and all of that other shit when at the end of Astonishing X-Men? That's kinda how comics work, bud.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 12:31 p.m. CST

    Okay, abandoned may be a strong word

    by Joenathan

    "Never intended to return to"<br><Br>How about that instead?

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 12:42 p.m. CST

    Works for me.

    by loodabagel

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 12:43 p.m. CST

    X-Force/X-Statix

    by Homer Sexual

    That was Peter Morrison? Right? Too lazy to wiki it. I know Mike Allred was the artist. It was awesome from the first issue almost to the end. U-Go Girl is especially memorable, but the whole group was exceptionally well characterized. And it was really ground-breaking. Plus, and this is a major plus, it was fun. Bendis comics generally have a fun factor of zero, which is ok in some books but generally goes too far in current Marvel comics. <p> I think my hate (really, hate) of Bendis' Daredevil and especially Avengers Disassembled colors my opinion of him. But you are right, he's the leader of Marvel's direction the last, what, 5 years? <p> Also, I do love New Avengers.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 12:52 p.m. CST

    Peter Milligan.

    by loodabagel

    And we have nearly opposite view on Bendis (love me some Daredevil), but I did hate Dissembled.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 1:13 p.m. CST

    Writers

    by Mr.FTW

    Really, is there anyone better or even measures up to the dynamic duo of McFarland and Liefield? Those guys really knew how to put it down as far as writing goes.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 1:16 p.m. CST

    Disassembled

    by Joenathan

    I think it was rushed, but I can understand the need to start from zero sometimes. Bendis has said that if he could re-do anything, it would be to wait a few issues before diving into Disassembled so that it wouldn't be so jarring for some folks.<br><br>I think his comics are fun though... i.e. Mockingbird versus the new masters of evil.<br><br>As for Daredevil... sometimes I think that it's not that I hate Bendis's Daredevil run, it's that I hate Daredevil, often times for the same reason I hate Yorick. Oh, poor super-buff-ninja-lawyer with the crazy super power senses and the 3 dozen supermodel girlfriends. Boo hoo.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 1:16 p.m. CST

    FTW

    by Joenathan

    No kidding. Remember Spawn versus Chapel. GENRE-DEFINING!

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 1:18 p.m. CST

    Doom Patrol and Animal Man didn't fall apart at all

    by Laserhead

    They didn't do anything that even seemed like ALMOST falling apart. They proceeded toward their specific conclusions fantastically. In both series, Morrison's very best stuff came at the end. True story!

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 1:21 p.m. CST

    loodabagel

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    I don't think that anybody said that Morrison wrote X-Statix. <p> I'm also not sure that Bendis came up with "character-changing plot twists." <p> Even if Skrull Kill Krew was bad, that doesn't mean that it didn't come first and inspire Secret Invasion. I don't remember making a judgement call on its quality, I was just pointing out that it existed. <p> What did Claremont do to retcon New X-Men? I think it missed that.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 1:27 p.m. CST

    I credit Jack Kirby and Stan Lee

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    for ushering in the modern age of comics. <p> Where would Bendis be without them? He'd actually have to come up with an idea on his own. He's a writer, not a creator. Big difference there.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 1:30 p.m. CST

    Bendis

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    Does he intend to return to Daredevil?

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 1:39 p.m. CST

    We_Pray...

    by loodabagel

    <p>Huh. Looks like you're right about X-Statix. Must've imagined that.</P> <p>True, Bendis didn't invent that idea, but moments like that play pretty integral parts in his comics-Daredevil's unmasking, all the "ultimate" kids in Ultimate Spider-Man, Ronin, Scarlet Witch, Norman Osborn. Or were you saying that the changes he made weren't that significant? I'd agree with you if that's what you're getting at, apart from the Norman Osborn thing, but I don't know if that was even his idea first.</P> <p>Chris Claremont brought Magneto back from the dead, and I think he made Xorn his own character, but that might've been Chuck Austen. It seems like a miracle that Pheonix has managed to stay dead for this long. I remember there were a few other things, but I've forgotten by now.</P> <p>I gotta eat now, but I'll get back to you on Skrull Kill Krew.</P>

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 1:50 p.m. CST

    loodabagel

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    There is one thing that I wish they had kept from Morrision's run, and that's that Wolverine: Origin was just another false memory implant. But, with that last movie it's now official canon forever. <p> Magneto not being dead is just business as usual for comics though, and I don't know if that counts as a "retcon." The Xorn stuff that they've done (I don't really understand it) probably does though.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 1:51 p.m. CST

    Bendis' Genius

    by cookylamoo

    Was realizing that a roomful of men in silly costumes were going to make fun of each other.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 1:52 p.m. CST

    Bendis

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    "Or were you saying that the changes he made weren't that significant?" <p> I was kind of saying both, I guess. <p> Enjoy your lunch.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 1:53 p.m. CST

    "that might've been Chuck Austen"

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    Yeah, it was. I looked it up.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 2:20 p.m. CST

    Man, I'm not even going to try to explain this...

    by loodabagel

    <P> So I'll let wikipedia do the work.</P> <p>Grant Morrison intended Xorn to be Magneto from his first appearance. As Morrison stated in an interview after he left New X-Men, "In my opinion, there really shouldn't have been an actual Xorn - he had to be fake, that was the cruel point of him".[3] In fact, soon after the revelation of Xorn's identity in New X-Men #146, readers pointed out that clues that Xorn was actually Magneto had been hidden throughout Morrison's run.[4][5] According to then-X-Men writer Chuck Austen, the X-Men editors liked the Xorn character and hoped Morrison would change his mind about the revelation; when he didn't, they asked Austen to bring Xorn back as a separate character. Marvel also wanted to continue using Magneto; Austen stated that "Marvel saw value in Magneto not being a mass-murderer of New Yorkers."[6]. Morrison has expressed criticism of this subsequent retcon in interviews.[7][8] Marvel retconned the Xorn/Magneto revelation and brought back Xorn and Magneto after Morrison's departure. In Uncanny X-Men #442 and 443, Xavier takes the body of Magneto to Genosha where they hold a funeral for the deceased mutant leader. However, in the last page of Excalibur #1, Xavier meets Magneto alive and well on Genosha. In subsequent issues of Excalibur, Xavier and Magneto debate the true identity and motives of Xorn, the individual whose bandage-wrapped body they brought to Genosha. In the same month Magneto returned in Chris Claremont's new Excalibur book, Austen's X-Men #157 introduced a new Xorn named Shen Xorn. Shen Xorn claims to be the twin brother of the original Xorn (now referred to as Kuan-Yin Xorn) who, under the influence of the entity known as Sublime, had pretended to be Magneto. This claim is supported when Emma Frost conducts a thorough mind scan of Shen. Not too long after, Shen Xorn disappears when he unleashes the gravitational forces of a black hole in the course of helping the X-Men defeat an attack by a Brotherhood of Mutants led by Exodus. Later, Shen Xorn is revealed to have been one of the mutants depowered due to the events of the House of M miniseries. The true identity of Xorn, and his relationship to the character Magneto, became a subject of confusion to fans. Marvel refrained from giving a complete explanation, eventually hinting that the summer 2005 crossover House of M would clear up the situation.[9] The Xorn entry in the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: X-Men 2005 stated that "Kuan-Yin eventually revealed himself to be a duplicate of the X-Men's nemesis Magneto, a transformation believed to have been caused by Magneto's daughter, the Scarlet Witch." This explanation was based on a suggestion in House of M #7 wherein Doctor Strange speculates that Wanda has been 'playing with the world' for far longer than even she knows, and may have been responsible for her father's puzzling rebirth. An alternative explanation has since been given in the pages of New Avengers since, according to Marvel editor Tom Brevoort, "nobody was satisfied with that offhanded non-explanation, and it didn’t make a heck of a lot of sense by itself even as a throwaway".[10] [edit] The Collective Main article: Weapon Omega In House of M #7, Scarlet Witch speaks the phrase, "No More Mutants". Suddenly, millions of mutants find themselves human, including Magneto and Quicksilver. In New Avengers, the collective power signatures of the mutants arrive in North Pole, Alaska and merges with a mutant postal worker, Michael Pointer. Disoriented, he enters Canada and, wielding the power of fifty mutants, kills every member of Alpha Flight except Sasquatch, and goes on a rampage destroying downtown Cleveland. Spider-Man and the Vision find that its energy signatures match up with the depowered mutants. On Genosha, the Collective repowers Magneto, who recognizes the intelligence controlling it as "Xorn." Xorn explains that he took the image of Magneto, because he knew mutants would follow him, and that they needed the real Magneto again. Reference is made to Xorn's confusing history as Vision comments that his files on Xorn are incomplete, with Wolverine later commenting "Xorn's files on Xorn are incomplete", demonstrating how not even Xorn seems to be certain who he is. Iron Man, Ms. Marvel, and the Sentry combine their powers and send the Collective/Xorn into the sun; Michael is separated from the Collective. However, Pointer still has access to the powers of the Collective, and, as of the end of the Civil War miniseries, is coerced into joining the newly formed Omega Flight, using a suit designed to harness his powers. Marvel editor-in-chief Joe Quesada in a 2006 Newsarama interview reiterated the Shen Xorn/Kuan-Yin Xorn explanation, but added that "because Xorn's powers were psychokinetic, and his personality was so strong, it basically remained an almost disembodied sentient thing among the big ball of mutant energy. When that energy got sucked down to Earth by Michael and all absorbed by him, Xorn was the dominant personality in the mix, and that's what drove him towards Genosha and Magneto."[11] This remains the official explanation of the Xorn character and its relationship to Magneto.</P>

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 2:22 p.m. CST

    False memories would have been cool...

    by loodabagel

    I think Origin would have worked better if it was presented as a "What if" sort of comic. I think it's a good book, but it really does ruin the legacy of the most over-exposed comic character ever.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 2:33 p.m. CST

    Xorn

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    Well that's just as convoluted an explanation as I've come to expect from X-Men comics. <p> Origin: I just thought that it was unspectacular and unnecessary. One of the coolest things about Wolverine was always his mysterious, undefined past. <p> But that's all over now. I guess he's really James Howlett. Oh well.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 2:34 p.m. CST

    Xorn and Origin

    by Joenathan

    I'm glad I missed most of that Xorn crap... good god...<br><br>Also, Origin was terrible.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 2:37 p.m. CST

    Magneto

    by we_pray_for_mad_skillz

    According to the Wikipedia explanation he was never really dead, right? So that's even less of a retcon. The whole retcon seems to center around Xorn and not Magneto. <p> Their reasoning for the whole thing is ridiculous though. <p> I mean, Magneto was about to kill all the world's leaders in New York in the first movie, wasn't he? Violence and disregard for humanity is just part of his character.

  • Oct. 29, 2009, 2:52 p.m. CST

    The best part...

    by loodabagel

    Xorn gets killed off 1 year later.

  • Oct. 30, 2009, 10:48 a.m. CST

    Daredevil and Origin.

    by Homer Sexual

    It was me who couldn't remember Peter Milligan's last name and said Peter Morrison. Lazy me. <p> I actually liked the setup of Bendis' Daredevil run,but I felt like he really botched the whole unmasking of Daredevil, like his identity was revealed but basically nobody cared or believed it. I thought the idea of the reveal was excellent, but the execution turned me off so much I dropped the book and have never picked it up again. Also, I have weird taste and my favorite Daredevil run is Ann Nocenti's. (But of course Miller was awesome as well). <p> Joe, you don't like the Origin comic miniseries? I think it's decent, but everyone I've loaned it too has thought it was excellent. I never saw the movie, but apparently it used the Origin comic origin?

  • Oct. 30, 2009, 10:51 a.m. CST

    Ares

    by Bluejack

    I just got and read the Ares mini from a few years back. I enjoyed it a great deal, and I liked the characterization of Ares. i would say that the Bendis version is more flat and one note. Oeming's portrayal is more of the scorned son of Olympus rather than the rabid dog of the first in his new mini. I'm not sure why, but I'm really digging this character right now. Harkens back to the Incarnations of Immortality by Piers Anthony, "Weilding a Red Sword." I would recommend the Ares mini. It remonds me of a dark shadow of the Howling Commandos.

  • Oct. 30, 2009, 10:57 a.m. CST

    Huge stack of books yesterday

    by Bluejack

    Cost me 40 friggin bucks! No wonder kids don't read comics any more.

  • Oct. 30, 2009, 11:08 a.m. CST

    Origin...

    by loodabagel

    I like it, and I've lent it out to a lot of people who aren't that familiar with comics and they all thought it was great. So, good comic, just a horrible, horrible idea.

  • Oct. 30, 2009, 3:10 p.m. CST

    Origin

    by Joenathan

    I wasn't a fan of the writing style or the choices made, not too mention the whole idea to begin, so I'm predisposed to not like it.

  • Oct. 30, 2009, 3:55 p.m. CST

    Bluejack

    by Homer Sexual

    I spent $50! So far I've only read Blackest Night Titans, because it's like candy...delicious fun, no effort to read, looks pretty...but there wasn't a whole lot of story. And the conclusion to War of the Marvels, which was ok...not up to par of the rest of the story, but I like what the outcome was for Karla Sofen...I think

  • Oct. 30, 2009, 4:04 p.m. CST

    Origin

    by Mr.FTW

    I thought it was ok it was just something hard to deliver on. Personally I don'tt hink Wolverine being shrouded in mystery makes him a better character like so many do, I think it just promots lazy writing. Also, there are way too many "mysterious" characters i the X universe like Bishop, Mr. Sinister, Gambit, ect ect. The X universe and Wolverine especially was and is so conveluted that it gets to be a turn off at times so finally laying some foundation for Wolverine is/was a good thing i my opinion because it set down some rules writers have to play by now as opposed to just relying on Wolverine's mysterious past as a plot contrivence.<p> The only problem is that his mysterious past has been so hyped and exploited for so many years anyone who took on the challenge of an origin was doomed to the busch league in the eyes of the fans. There wasn no way to make everyone happy.<p> As far as the movie went it used few of the ideas from Origin but much like evey other aspect of that terrible movie it bastardised and canablised bits and pieces.