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Issue #50 Release Date: 2/29/12 Vol.#10
The Pull List
(Click title to go directly to the review)
Advance Review: SUPERBIA #1
Advance Review: HELL YEAH #1
Advance Review: HELLRAISER #11
FF #15
Advance Review: RACHEL RISING #1


Creator & Writer: Grace Randolph
Artist: Russell Dauterman
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Reviewer: BottleImp

As difficult as it may be to imagine nowadays, there was a time when the idea of a costumed superhero having any sort of personal life outside of fighting crime and wearing spandex was revolutionary. The comic book readers of today owe a massive debt to Stan, Steve and Jack for adding a sense of depth and characterization to the previously one-dimensional superhuman archetypes. The Marvel comics of the 1960s shifted the focus of the storytelling from being solely plot-driven to a balance between plot and character—a development that grew and expanded throughout the 1970s and ‘80s, leading eventually to the deconstructionist one-two punch of WATCHMEN and THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS and their myriad progeny. The origins of the character-driven stories we enjoy today can all be traced back to the melding of the four color crimefighter with the melodrama of the soap opera.

Which brings me to one of the soapiest comics I’ve ever read: GRACE RANDOLPH’S SUPURBIA, which reads like JUSTICE LEAGUE meets “Desperate Housewives.” The premise is that all the members of the Meta Legion (SUPURBIA’s stand-in for the JLA) live on the same suburban street in a quiet suburban neighborhood with their spouses and children, making the neighborhood a safe haven for the Legion, away from the danger that their careers bring. Though this story is about super-powered beings, however, the focus of the comic is centered on these non-powered family members who have to live amongst demigods. Housewives, girlfriends, kids and a househusband to an Amazon-like warrior woman—these are the true protagonists of SUPURBIA.

The concept of normal humans living alongside the comic book world of heroes and villains has been explored before in the medium, mostly in the Marvel universe (though DC has touched upon it here and there), but this is the first time I’ve seen a book that promises to favor depicting the situation from the normal humans’ point of view instead of focusing on the spandex set. This is what SUPURBIA has that sets the series apart from other similarly themed comics; if more attention had been given to the heroes themselves, the book would feel like just another entry in the long line of superhero deconstruction. Part of the reason for this is that these heroes are so closely modeled after their archetypical counterparts, thus far they come across as cheap imitations rather than fully realized characters in their own right. Granted, Superman doesn’t do lines of cocaine along with his ex-criminal girlfriend like SUPURBIA’S Sovereign does, and Alfred never walked in on Batman pounding ass with Robin in the Batcave like Night Fox and Agent Twilight, but even so, it’s not exactly the first time that these iconic figures were tinkered with to suit an edgier sort of comic book story. Hell, Alan Moore had his erstatz Justice League running a child pornography ring with their teenage sidekicks in TOP 10, so these guys are getting off pretty light in SUPURBIA.

The artwork in this comic is serviceable—Dauterman has a good sense of page composition and camera angles, and his cartoonish style works in terms of making the civilian characters as easily distinguishable from one another as their costumed counterparts—but I’m afraid that that’s about all I can muster in terms of the positive. There’s some wonky anatomy happening on some pages, and sometimes the simplified drawing style makes for sparse, ill-defined backgrounds and rubbery figures. All in all, the visuals are decent, but they fail to add that extra impact that could have elevated SUPURBIA above its familiar theme.

That added impact is really what this series needs in order to set it apart from the rest of the crowd. This first issue isn’t bad—the characters are there and there’s a neat cliffhanger at the end that provides the necessary intrigue to make me want to find out what comes next—but the focal shift from the heroes to the housewives of super-street isn’t quite enough yet to give the series its own identity. Simply put, I don’t think SUPURBIA is as clever as it thinks it is, but my interest in this soap opera has been piqued enough to want to tune in next month to see what happens next.

When released from his bottle, the Imp transforms into Stephen Andrade, an artist/illustrator/pirate monkey painter from New England. He's currently hard at work interpreting fellow @$$Hole Optimous Douche's brainwaves and transforming them into pretty pictures on AVERAGE JOE, an original graphic novel to be published by Com.x. You can see some of his artwork here.

The TWELVE #10 (of 12)

Writer: J. Michael “I’ll Finish When I Feel Like It” Straczynski
Artist: Chris “You Bet Your Ass It Looks Good” Weston
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Reviewer: Majin Fu

After reading the first few issues of the series almost four years ago, I compared the intriguing murder mystery, complete with an ensemble cast of complex heroes from a bygone era to the pivotal superhero murder mystery: WATCHMEN. While my early comparisons may have been a bit hyperbolic, THE TWELVE has still proven to be a memorable story. It’s not even finished yet, but this issue culminates in a moment that is both shocking and thought-provoking, making it a must-read.


So in this issue we learn the Blue Blade was indirectly murdered by Dynamo Man, who seems to have been motivated primarily by his Ken doll status (i.e. a lack of genitalia). While at first this seems silly, and indeed several of the panels featuring DM’s naked form are downright hilarious, the implications of such a resolution can become quite disturbing after further meditation. JMS is obviously probing the limits of sexuality, especially in correlation to the violence inherent to costumed vigilantes throughout the text. Some may consider this a controversial conclusion, but like the best in superhero stories, it’s bound to inspire some heated discussions between those who’ve read the story.


Speaking of story, when it comes to straightforward storytelling, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better artist than Chris Weston to illustrate your narrative. The man practically became a legend with his work on THE FILTH with Grant Morrison, and it looks like with THE TWELVE he has created another masterpiece of the comics form. Every page is intricately detailed, every figure dripping with human emotion, and every essential moment is perfectly, dramatically captured and composed on the page. Each of the superheroes in the cast is especially designed to recall the earlier generation they came from, including one guy who looks eerily like James Cagney. It’s some of the best design work I’ve seen in any comic, in any year.

Chris Chuckry’s colors also deserve special recognition for bringing the colorful costumes of these heroes of yore to life. Each character is portrayed vividly in their larger-than-life costumes, while the environments are appropriately rendered in a realistic manner, making the character practically pop off the page. Flashbacks and repeated sequences from earlier issues are also given a faded tone that distinguishes the scenes well from the rest of the story.What’s in a delay anyway? Well it depends upon the book really, the quality of the writing and art, and of course the reader’s investment in the characters and plot. Considering these factors, THE TWELVE just might be worth another look, if only in collected form later on. Those of you who decided to skip the latest issues (a totally understandable decision) may want to consider checking this out when it is eventually released in trade form, as I predict this story would benefit from repeated readings.

THE TWELVE is a potent meditation on the conflicts which arise from a generation gap, the implications of sexual neglect, and the violence which results from such issues. This culminates in a story populated by a multifaceted cast that compels the reader to consider another time, when values were substantially different from our own. Even with the mystery already solved, I’m looking forward to the final two issues of this series, if only to see how the rest of the cast will cope with their new places in the contemporary world.


Writers: Adam Beechen, Derek Fridoles and Dustin Nguyen
Artists: Norm Breyfogle, Dustin Nguyen and Derek Fridoles
Publisher: DC Comics
Reviewer: Optimous Douche

BATMAN BEYOND had everything I wanted and more from a Batman comic. It’s a fast-moving ride of Silver Age sensibility minus the camp. In a sea of comics that rely on the cheap trick of deconstructing the hero mythos for laughs, BATMAN BEYOND rises above the mire to walk on water in a savior-like experience of exciting action, deep characterization and outright hilarity.

I didn’t expect to like this book since my dalliances with BATMAN BEYOND in the past were limited. The cartoon came out when I was already well into my college days of bong hits and babes (and sometimes studying), so I never had the free time to truly learn the wonders of future Gotham and the non-brooding, major ass kicking, kid Batman Terry McGinnis. Frankly, I always assumed it was a book for kids. Also, being a past champion of continuity, I had a hard time wrapping my head around the axle of future Gotham visions in BATMAN proper (i.e. #666 with Damian as tomorrow’s Batdude). Thank God for the conversation I had with Mike Uslan; he set me straight on the virtues of multiple Bat universes and how any future prognostications are just that, they are not canon or fact. Basically he told me I was cutting my nose off to spite my fanman face

I’m sure other @$$holes are better suited to write this review, those who know the history of Terry, his girlfriend and the extended bat future family. But despite not having a historical context, I was easily able to acclimate to the story – and even better than that, I actually cared. No, I don’t know exactly why Terry’s girlfriend was mad at him, but writer Beechen gives me all the clues I need to know in concise bubbles: that Terry often shirks his boyfriend duties to work for crusty old Bruce Wayne. No, I have no idea who Max is, but it’s clear she’s Terry’s Oracle and the debate as to whether or not to change a line of code to take down a L33T hacking ring were the tensest moments at a keyboard since Mathew Broderick played tic-tac-toe in “War Games.” No I’ve never seen the Jokerz, but again the name and the clown make-up gave me more then I needed to understand the cult attraction of tomorrow’s clinically insane. I’m also sure if I was a bigger historical fan of BATMAN BEYOND, the end reveal of who’s controlling the influx of out-of-town Jokerz would have been more “gawd-damn” and less “that’s cool.” Again though, in a testament to Beechen’s writing, even though I’m not getting cold sweats, I realize the importance of this reveal and how it can bring Terry’s personal life to new heights of solitude.

Now, as a longtime fan of BATMAN, I squealed with glee at seeing an elderly Bruce in cahoots with the equally elderly police commissioner Babs Gordon. This was the kind of progression I imagined I would be reading as a young Douche. Time marches on and it’s infuriating when comics won’t recognize that fact. Well, here it is folks, in full arthritic Technicolor.

It shouldn’t go without mentioning that all of this action occurred in only one half of the book. That’s right, kids--you get an entire second story with this comic focusing on Terry’s interactions with the JUSTICE LEAGUE BEYOND. Aquagirl, Green Lantern, Big Barda, Warhawk and everyone’s favorite Kryptonian who is now out of the secret identity closet, Kal-El, protect against the threats that are too large for any one hero. The threading of the two stories was virtually seamless as the JLB tries to break up a gang war between the Jokerz and the gangs that sport the latest designer genes of animal spliced DNA.

The art in both books was fantastic and also practically seamless. While it’s great to have Breyfogle back into the Bat fold, I was most impressed with Nguyen’s ability to meld with Breyfogle’s style without outright aping it. Plus, Nguyen gets characterization. At one point Aquagirl is working at the JL computer and tucks her leg under her as she sits. This is a beautiful touch into her personality delivered solely with visual cues (plus it adds to her cute as a button demeanor). I also found myself enamored with the logical calm fighting style of tomorrow’s Green Lantern. Yeah, there really is no need to fly around frantically when your ring can do all of the work. With so many Green Lanterns being emotional hot heads and a hot mess of psychosis, it’s refreshing to see a more Zen approach to galactic peace.

I really can’t say enough about this book: I laughed (a lot), I was taken aback, and most importantly I truly felt a real force of change and differentiation from the rest of the New 52. BATMAN BEYOND is more than an evolution of today’s heroes or a simple grab at decade old nostalgia; BEYOND represents a stellar new era of heroic optimism and adventure.

Optimous has successfully blackmailed fellow @$$Hole BottleImp into being his artist on Average Joe. Look for Imp's forced labor on Optimous brain child in mid-2012 from COM.X. Friend Optimous on FaceBook to get Average Joe updates and because ceiling cat says it's the right thing to do.

Advance Review: In stores today!


Writer: Joe Keating
Illustrator: Andre Syzmanowicz
Publisher: Image Comics
Written by: superhero

This was a decent comic. It’s nothing that blew me away but this issue is obviously just a setup story. You know the kind: introduce the main characters, flesh out the world, yadda, yadda, yadda.

What we have here is another misunderstood teenager with superpowers who lives in a world a bit reminiscent of the old, original SQUADRON SUPREME mini-series from the ‘80’s. Superheroes appeared and changed our society several years ago and now we have one angry teenager who is about to embrace his destiny and possibly figure out something is amiss in this somewhat perfect world of his that will change his life forever.

It’s a familiar setup and there’s nothing in here that got me really ultra-jazzed about HELL YEAH. It’s not that it’s bad, it’s just that the setup is somewhat…familiar. I will say that it got me interested enough to check out the next issue, but the feeling that I got with this chapter was very much what I felt when I read the first issue of INVINCIBLE, meaning that it was OK but it wasn’t anything to write home about. Of course, now INVINCIBLE is one of my all time favorite superhero books, so maybe there’s a bit of potential waiting to be born within this series. There is something fascinating about the universe that Keating and Syzmanowicz are putting together, but if the pace doesn’t pick up within the next several issues I may have to relegate HELL YEAH to one of the many “superpower” books that failed to capture my interest throughout the years.

I will say that I did very much enjoy Syzmanowicz’s art and Jason Lewis’s coloring. The artwork and palette of the colors in HELL YEAH were definitely standouts for me. It’s the story that kind of underwhelmed me, but the last page of the book at least got me curious enough to come back and check out what may happen next.

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. Some of his work can be seen at and check out his blog at You can check also out his webcomics at and, which is currently in development.


Writer: Jonathan Hickman
Art: Esad Ribic
Publisher: Ultimate Marvel Comics
Reviewer: The Writing Rambler

It’s funny how back in August the comics world was abuzz with talk of the coming reboot of the DCU and how all things were being restarted from issue one (I’m enjoying the NEW 52 but I’m still waiting to see how long it all lasts) and all of the repercussions it would bring. But at the same time Marvel’s Ultimate line was having a remodel of sorts, at least in number form. The ULTIMATE COMICS line all reset to #1’s as well and besides the big news of ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN’s death and subsequent replacement by the younger and controversial (because apparently a non-white SPIDEY is still controversial in 2012) choice of Miles Morales, we also had THE ULTIMATES starting back at issue one. Unlike DC’s reboot, though, Marvel’s edgier, more realistic Ultimate Universe wasn’t restarting, but instead rising from the ashes of utter destruction. Spidey was dead, Captain America had quit, Reed Richards had gone bad and Iron Man, well Iron Man was still a rich & powerful drunk (and that’s why we love him). While I’ve raved in the past about my love for the new ULTIMATE SPIDERMAN book I figured I should show some love to THE ULTIMATES themselves by talking a little about this 7th issue.

I actually enjoyed this newest issue less than the first 6, but despite that ULTIMATES is still one of the best books Marvel is currently putting out. I like seeing this team, and Nick Fury, in general at a point of desperation. It seems as though there is no way they can overcome the clearly advanced “Children of Tomorrow” and their spoilertastic leader. My biggest problem with this current issue is that unlike many other main books, I feel a little lost when not following along with the supplemental tie in stuff (in this case the ULTIMATE HAWKEYE limited series). Were it not for the wonders of the internet (sorry, Marvel, but I still don’t feel like paying 3.99 for ULTIMATE HAWKEYE back issues) I don’t think I would have been able to follow the events of this seventh issue. But don’t let my complaints turn you away; this is still a very good book.

On a major plus side for this book, Esad Ribic brings his A++ game more and more with each new issue. I can’t stress how much I love the look of this book. From the characters’ facial expressions to an absolutely gorgeous page of the S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier approaching the Tian Heavenly Cities his work is impeccable. I’d also love to see anyone have something bad to say about a panel showing a certain character sitting peacefully in the shadows drinking tea. It’s just great work all around.

Where ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN is doing a fantastic job telling the story of one character’s personal journey of growing into their new powers, THE ULTIMATES is doing the same but for large scale epic storytelling. Watching these characters up against impossible odds is exactly what great team storytelling should be about. Though issue 7 does slightly suffer from A.D.D. as it jumps around assuming the reader is all caught up with the goings on on the Ultimate universe, it’s more than forgivable with the great story we’re being given.

You can follow The Writing Rambler on his blog here and follow on Twitter @Writing_Rambler !

Advance Review: In stores today!


Writer: Clive Barker with Robb Humphreys & Mark Miller
Artist: Stephen Thompson & Janusz Ordon
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Reviewer: The Dean

I have not been reading HELLRAISER. I’ve seen the first three movies, and after the third, I thought that perhaps the series is best remembered as those first two movies only. But every month or so, I hear rumblings of how good this new HELLRAISER series from Clive Barker is, and this month I finally decided to give it a go.

Despite having no knowledge of the events in the series’ past ten issues, I found it pretty easy to get the gist of things right from the start. The issue opens with a nice little paragraph summation of what I missed, which more or less boils down to: Pinhead got bored in hell, found a way out, made the first film’s heroine (Kirsty Cotton) the new Pinhead, and the old Pinhead is just regular ol’ Captain Elliot Spencer again. Spencer is just like the rest of us now - hanging out with his pals, breaking stuff in antique stores (although it’s not an accident when he does it), and searching for the key to Heaven’s gate. I didn’t really get a good sense of Kirsty’s Pinhead with this issue, which I was really hoping for, but after the rather awesome cliffhanger in this one, I’m sure that’s coming.

The art for this one is split between Stephen Thompson and Janusz Ordon. I’m fairly unfamiliar with both of them, but for the most part, I like what I see. To be honest, it was hard to really gauge it due to some rather bland coloring from Space Goat Productions, but otherwise, nothing really stands out either way. This issue was pretty light on the hellish mutilation, though, and I’d like to see what they can do there before I start wishing for different artists or anything.

All in all, I’m glad I took a chance and jumped into HELLRAISER with this issue. I’m sure diehards are already reading it, but if you only had a passing interest in the series before like I did, it’s worth giving this one a look. However, for the most part, I think I’ll be reserving my judgment on this team as a whole until I see some more crazy Cenobite stuff going down. Hopefully that one who throws CDs at people isn’t still around. What was with that guy? Guess his mom wasn’t there to yell at him for trying that after watching 3 NINJAS like mine was.


Writer: Michael Rex
Illustrator: Michael Rex
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons
Reviewer: Mr. Pasty

When I became a father, I became an expert in a lot of things. You know, all kinds of cool dad things like cleaning up regurgitated formula, wiping baby shit off a toddler’s leg in a Wal-Mart mens’ room, and stumbling around a one bedroom apartment on two hours of sleep. To that end, it was like my freshman year in college – only less vomit. As the little one got older, I also became an expert in children’s books. In spite of my best efforts to make an ad hoc babysitter out of my downstairs television, she loves to find a quiet corner to read. Go figure. That means regular trips to the library and blank checks for the school book fair. So imagine my excitement when I got a chance to nab free copies of Michael Rex’s FANGBONE, a story about an elementary school barbarian who must keep the school safe and pass the third grade. I didn’t have to leave the house and I didn’t have to tap into my beer fund. Then again, my idea of Sunday brunch is loading up on free hot food samples at Costo.

So here’s the deal: I decided to read FANGBONE before pushing it off on my kid, just in case it was awful or had some kind of offensive material (kind of like biting into a Halloween apple to check for razor blades). Not surprisingly, I enjoyed it, but there is no point in having a middle-aged comic book geek try to sell you on the merits of a children’s book, so I’ll now turn the floor over to my third grade wunderkind:

“I say Fangbone always stands up for himself and is always brave. He is never scared and he also learns about the new world he is in to protect the “big toe of drool.” He makes friends with a boy named Bill and in volume two there is the egg of misery. In the egg was supposed to have a white dragon, but there was something else in the egg. I really loved the book because it was just like a comic. Also I loved it because of all of the action. Fangbone tells everybody about himself. I think this book is funny because there is this girl who says everything is stupid. The word is funny because she says the word all the time like in one of the pages she said, ‘Fur underwear is stupid.’ Also she said ‘Beanball is stupid.’

My kid thinks the word “stupid” is funny, probably because I don’t let her say it, but rest assured, there’s more to FANGBONE than grade school curse words. Rex strikes a nice balance between smart and silly without pandering to his audience. The illustrations are simplified and easy on younger eyes and his story is fleshed out and fully realized. My research tells me Rex is also a New York Times bestselling author and after reading FANGBONE, it doesn’t much surprise me. His work is equal to, if not superior to, some of the more recognized offerings currently crowding the bookstore shelves, and I can’t imagine any child in the target demographic not enjoying this charming little tale of a boy from Skullbania. Kids or no kids, FANGBONE is a winner.

Web heads who can’t get enough of Mr. Pasty’s word vomit are encouraged to watch him operate as Nostradumbass over at here. Love, hate and Mafia Wars requests should be directed here.

Advance Review: In stores today!


Writer: Jonathan Hickman
Artist: Nick Pitarra
Publisher: Image
Reviewed by Humphrey Lee

There comes a point in time when you just have to admit you are a shill. For the third week now I am covering an Image comic and, honestly, it’s a trend that is probably going to continue for a bit. Besides my pull list shuffling in the wake of DC’s New 52 last year, no other publisher has enticed me to add more of their lineup to mine than Image. Every month it seems they are adding to the stable by a good handful of titles and at least one catches my eye. I’m not always saying they are a homerun with me – I may be a whore but I’m not easy – but there’s always something in there worth the time. And that brings me to Jonathan Hickman, whose works are also in that vein of “always worth a look” and that always prompt me to put my legs up in the air (allegedly) like Sandra Fluke.

My love of all things Hickman comes from their almost always being rooted in the world of hard sci-fi.” THE MANHATTAN PROJECTS goes a bit historical – as these Hickman works are wont to do – and plays with the World War II era and uses Robert Oppenheimer, Mr. “I Have Become Death” himself, as the central character. What follows next is kind of what I’d like to think is what would happen if Jonathan Hickman drank so much he woke up thinking he was Warren Ellis. Essentially it’s Sci-Fi Mad Bastardry at its best.

There isn’t just Robert Oppenheimer, there’s his evil twin brother that is a psycho murderer. There isn’t just the atomic bomb - the singular form of where this book derives its name from - that made Oppenheimer famous, there’s Zen Powered Death Buddhists coming out of portals that crash from the sky. From a spectacle standpoint it’s pretty great, and lord knows where else this will go based on that time period and all the minds involved, a very prominent one of which we catch a couple panels worth of glimpses of in this and which I was officially giddy to see his frizzy hair and soup-strainer mustache.

From a developmental standpoint, this book is pretty tight. It flows very smoothly between its concepts and plot points and never loses a bit of momentum. Admittedly, the crux of the progression, as you go along with the ride, lends itself to the predictable, but you will be so wrapped up in the goings-on of the book, and just what implications that cliffhanger has, that you probably will not give a good goddamn. This is the (I believe) second teaming up of Nick Pitarra on a Hickman joint and a lot of the above buzzwords used, particularly “flow”, are very much due to his work. It’s a great complimentary style as it has this odd matter of factness to it that dares you to take the book more seriously than the events in it seem to warrant. This is especially true in the body language of Oppenheimer, as he’s always so stiff and unexcitable, despite the occasional bits of bugfuck insanity going about before him. The lanky, angular look to him also makes the character that much more menacing as certain events transpire toward the end of this particular issue.

As much as I have enjoyed what Hickman has been doing with his Marvel projects – including what could easily end up being my favorite FANTASTIC FOUR run ever – I much prefer the version that gets to do whatever the hell he pleases. It’ll be especially nice to see an extended run of indie work of his as, I have felt, a couple of his past mini-series – namely THE RED WING and RED MASS FOR MARS – had hurt themselves with abruptness. Tons of cool concepts and not enough pages to let them live and breathe and develop into something more. That is what THE MANHATTAN PROJECTS promises to be; something more. Something more than we’ve seen Hickman and Pitarra develop before and doing something more with a time period that is rife with possibilities considering the players involved, both historically and creatively. Here’s to something more: may we always keep demanding it and folks like Hickman and Pitarra keep it in supply.

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 blog 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.

Advance Review: In stores today!


Story & Art: Terry Moore
Publisher: Abstract Studios
Johnny Destructo

To almost every other comic book professional alive right now: Terry Moore is kicking your ass. He is writing, illustrating, lettering and publishing his own title on a regular basis, and it's awesome. He's running rings around some of you fellows and ladies who can't get your pencils done on time, even relying on finishes and layouts by other artists. This is a master of several crafts. Not just artistically, but writing as well.

And genres? Forgeddaboudit!

Romantic comedy? - Nailed it.

Sci-fi? Nailed it.

Horror? In the process of friggin' nailing it.

There are comic professionals that are beloved by fans, and then there are comic professionals that are beloved by other comic professionals. That is to say, Moore is someone to look at to see how it gets done.

As a life-long fan of the horror genre, I have found it difficult to get into "horror comics". There is some element lost in the translation. A lack of atmosphere, of anxiety that is usually supplied by music (or lack of music), timing, subtle emotional beats, etc. Static images on a page have, in the past, failed to provide me with the anticipation and the feeling of dread that horror films put forth. Somehow, Terry Moore has properly translated these elements onto the drawn page.

Almost every page ratchets up the tension in some form or another, to the point that I'm getting a little worried about the pay off! How can Moore possibly provide us with a satisfactory wrap-up to this story that appropriately answers all of my questions? It's starting to feel like LOST, in that regard. But I have faith. He hasn't let me down once in the (almost) 2 decades I've been reading his work.

I feel uncomfortable providing a synopsis here, as what I recount will only serve to diminish the story's effect on the reader. Suffice it to say, if you like Terry Moore, or horror books, or just well crafted art, this is for you.

FF #15

Writer: Jonathan Hickman
Art: Nick Dragotta (pencils/inks) Chris Sotomayor (colors)
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Henry Higgins is My Homeboy

Pretty Straightforward

Last week, I read that Hickman will soon be leaving FF and FANTASTIC FOUR. And as someone who has rarely given the Fantastic Four a passing thought, I’m rather depressed. Hickman has taken the series and revitalized it, producing one of the most engaging titles on the stands today. The title continues the trend as it sets up the finale for the “Council Of Reeds” story, and after the last issue’s bombastic ending, takes a moment to breathe.

Writing: (4/5) The issue juggles the fallout from last issue and setting up the events of the upcoming finale. Both are well written, if a little rushed. The interplay between the various characters remains true, light, and fun, reflecting the ages of these characters. Dragon Man attempting to win over his compatriots to be shot down by Franklin, Bentley pissing off Katie Power and getting decked, it all rings true--especially the continued trend of making Valarie Richards a badass of the highest degree. It all shows Hickman’s great continued characterization, and his grasp on this colourful cast.

If the book snags anywhere, then it’s the rushed feeling prevalent in this issue. A lot of ground needs to be covered, and it’s taken care off sparsely. Before there’s time to really register what’s happened, the team is on the Power Pack’s ship. And before long, they’re in a battle. And quickly after that, the fight is settled. I just wish there was more time to explore the events transpiring.

Art: (4/5) Dragotta is solid throughout the issue, and a great choice for art on this series. As opposed to the epic and grand scale of Kitson’s work in FANTASTIC FOUR, Dragotta presents a much brighter, more cartoony sense of style to the comic. The characters pop off the page (in no small part due to Sotomayor’s colouring), and are inherently fun. There’s a great sense of consistency, and an entertaining sense of motion present. It’s the precise sort of art the Fantastic Foundation class should have. The fight with the Moloids especially is fantastic, doing a hundred things at once but knowing how to focus on what’s important (namely, a troubled looking Franklin). There are no real problems with it, save a few panels here and there. The only reason it’s not perfect is those few inconsistencies.

Best Moment: Valerie ending the battle with the Moloids.

Worst Moment: The pacing feels just a little rushed.

Overall: (4/5) A very entertaining issue, and one I hope continues on even after Hickman departs.


Created, Written, Drawn, and Colored by James Stokoe
Image Comics
Reviewer: superhero

I hate James Stokoe. You wanna know why? Because he’s fucking amazing, that’s why!

I had never heard of ORC STAIN. I didn’t even know this comic existed. I didn’t know anything about it. Which is a damn shame. A DAMN SHAME. Because this is one of the best comics I’ve had the fortune to read in recent memory.

ORC STAIN is the best combination of old Heavy Metal/Dungeons and Dragons comic goodness that I have seen in a long time. It’s absolute chaotic, mad, mad, MAD brilliance packed in a small pamphlet of a book that just blew my mind.

Every once in a while you come across a comic that just hits all of the pleasure zones of you brain. ORC STAIN was made for the inner pre-teen in me that still yearns to get out every once in a while (and all too often does). It’s filled with alien creatures, otherworldly technology, and crazy, crazy violent action! How in the hell did I, no, how in the hell does the comic book reading WORLD not know about this comic book??? Why is every comic book reviewer, artist, craftsman, etc. just not singing the praises of James Stokoe, the man who apparently wrote, drew and colored this whole damn thing ALL BY HIMSELF???

>I’ll tell you why…it’s because they all hate him. Just like I do. No one person deserves to be this talented.


If you are out there and you long for a day when you could pick up a comic book and experience something that was wholly original and just somewhat on the edge of madness while at the same time being completely impressed by the professionalism of what you’re reading, check out this book. I’ve apparently already missed out on the first six issues but when the trade comes out you can bet your sweet bippy that I will be buying it without hesitation.


I hate you, James Stokoe…but I love your comic.

Advance Review: In stores today!


Writer: Joe Harris
Artist: Ivan Rodriguez
Dynamite Entertainment
Reviewer: Lyzard

You would think that with my interest (some may say obsession) in vampires that I would have read a comic about Vampirella. I hadn’t and her outfit wasn’t a factor this (okay, maybe just a bit). But, even with only a basic idea of who she is, I didn’t find that a hindrance to reading this comic.

I’m glad that I am reviewing issue #2, instead of the first. VAMPIRELLA VS. DRACULA #1 didn’t do anything for me. Well, it did cause quite a headache from confusion. This series is an extension of the Alan Moore/Gary Frank story, THE NEW EUROPEAN, which was reprinted in issue #1. For Alan Moore, the story seemed weak. The tale of Dracula has been adapted ad nausea, to the point where originality is near impossible to achieve. Moore moves the story to 1997; nothing really special there. The change he brought to it was the self-reflexiveness. Our “Jonathan Harker”, now named Jack Halloran, realizes that he is living an updated version of Bram Stoker’s tale. However, Moore doesn’t really take advantage of this self-awareness. Jack comes to this realization way too late in the story, making him thickheaded. While elements begin to change bit by bit near the end, there is no major veer off the road. You would think that a comic that allows the characters to see what plot they are in would also explore the idea of them changing the ending.

But I digress. This isn’t a review of THE NEW EUROPEAN or VAMPIRELLA VS. DRACULA #1. I merely thought that a summarization of my reading experience prior to issue #2 would be beneficial in understanding why I feel a particular way about this particular book.

The comic begins with an addition that has become popular in recent retellings of Dracula. I call it the Coppola version, based on his 1992 film. I don’t know where this Elisabetha love interest came from. If someone can tell me where Stoker mentions her that’d be great, though I must give credit to writer Joe Harris for putting in the narration that “others would gloss over his loss entirely when portraying the origins of the most infamous vampire the world would ever know.” It was this moment that I knew I would enjoy this issue much more.

My confusion with the prior was three-fold. First there was the comic’s description as a story between Vampirella and Dracula “drawn to one another across continents and centuries by a mysterious force…” I kept on holding on to this belief that this story would be centered on the relationship between the two of them, but what I came to realize was this was a story focused on Dracula and Jonathan. Issue #2 tied in Vampirella’s part much better.

My second problem was Ivan Rodriguez’s drawings of Dracula and Jonathan. They are way too similar. Both characters have the same body type, just with one scruffier. In issue #2, though this poor design continues to some extent, though there are different versions of Dracula (based on the different timelines) that have a stronger distinction to that period’s Jonathan.

My final issue with VAMPIRELLA VS. DRACULA #1 was the mechanics of the time jumps. This was probably the only problem not cleared up in the second issue; in fact, it was the only facet that became more complicated.

All that being said, VAMPIRELLA VS. DRACULA #2 showed how this story spinning off of Alan Moore’s is actually more creative than its predecessor. The idea of Dracula and Jonathan reliving their tale over and over again throughout history is an original idea. It could represent how the story keeps on getting told repeatedly. The second issue also showed the potential for such an idea. Once the mechanics of the time jumping is cleared up, it’ll be easier for me to focus on both Vampirella and Jonathan’s realization that they are repeating their lives, the very aspect I wished that Moore had explored in his version.

I know most reviews cover the quality of writing or the artwork, but I spent so much time focusing on the plot and structure that I paid little heed to anything else. If I were to comment on the dialogue, I’d have to say the Texas drawl of Quincy was a favorite of mine.

If you pick up this comic because you are into Vampirella, be patient. Her character has been passive in both issues, but you can see the potential for her to take the reins and become more of the focus soon enough.

Lyzard is actually Lyz Reblin, a senior screenwriting major with an English minor at Chapman University. Along with writing for AICN, she has been published twice on the subject of vampire films.

DC Comics
A common criticism of the first issue of JUSTICE LEAGUE described the comic akin to “an issue that would come with an action figure.” And the sentiment, sadly, still holds true. This is a comic that features the formation of the Justice League, the appearance of Darkseid, and a classic superhero beat down, and despite all that, all one can muster afterwards is a half-hearted “meh.” The action is dull and tired. There’s no real tension because, serving as a prologue of sorts for the current new 52, we know everyone comes out of it. There’s a horribly cliché framing device. The fight ends with an obvious deus ex machine, featuring Batman telling Cyborg, “It’s not the machine, it’s YOU who can save the day” in the worst possible Saturday morning cartoon manner. It’s just a lackluster comic. Even the usually reliable (if dated) art of Jim Lee is forgettable here, displaying some awful shots (look at Wonder Woman stabbing Darkseid). It’s a comic that takes a number of great individual elements, puts them all in a rucksack, then beats them with a stick until they’re indiscernible from one another. Six issues in and the first story done, JUSTICE LEAGUE has failed to impress. - Henry Higgins is My Homeboy

Bongo Comics

I wasn’t allowed to watch Simpsons as a kid. My mother looked down on the show as crude and rude, so as soon as it came on the channel was sadly switched. Over the years I managed to catch a few episodes here and there (mostly in German so I didn’t get some of the jokes). Thanks to friends, my experiences with Springfield and its inhabitants have increased ten-fold, and thanks to the comics from Bongo, I can take the laughs with me. Ralph Wiggum is the son of the inept police captain from the show, a character who perfectly encapsulates the frustrating lack of aptitude some cops possess. Similarly, his son Ralph is the personification of the sissy boy we all remember from school. You know, the one who would sooner pretend to be a pony than play football with the other boys, not that there’s anything wrong with that. The stories start strong, with a script from Mary Trainor depicting Ralph ruining the house in a matter of moments, all the while oblivious to the danger around him. They get slowly less funny from there, but all of them are still hilariously ridiculous, especially Matt Groening’s story, where Ralph is being stalked by a nefarious leprechaun. Recommended for fans of the show. -
Majin Fu

DC Comics

The search for the Amber Room continues! Or the search for the truth behind the Amber Room. Or the…you know, I really don’t care anymore. UNCHARTED in comic book form is starting to feel more and more like its video game counterpart, less the action, adventure, and intrigue. Sandoval has a great grasp of these characters, and the monthly doses of Drake and Sully are at least entertaining enough to keep me reading, but when the dialogue shifts from playful banter to plot exposition, I start thinking about saving that $2.99 next month. Now this is going to sound like much more of an insult that I intend it to be, but here goes – this issue is much better when you ignore the words. Sergio Sandoval is probably the main reason I’m sticking with this series, and his art is telling a much better story than Williamson’s writing. There’s a real sense of wonder and exploration here when you ignore the boring explanations of various totems and caverns. Be it the genuine character drawn into the cast’s faces or the exhilarating vantage points and dramatic reveals, there’s too much to love in this art for me to drop this title now. This issue in particular might not be Williamson at his best, but it is Sandoval at his, and UNCHARTED #4 deserves a flip through at least next time you get a chance. - The Dean

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

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

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Readers Talkback
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  • March 7, 2012, 11:36 a.m. CST


    by superhero

    No effing way!!!!

  • Mike Baron should sue.

  • March 7, 2012, 11:38 a.m. CST



    The Batman Beyond toon but have never read the comic though ...might give it a try. And you can still catch the show on one of the kids networks.

  • March 7, 2012, 11:59 a.m. CST

    I'd like to see Vampirella's honey badger

    by Joe Plumber

  • March 7, 2012, 11:59 a.m. CST

    Orc Stain is already in trade

    by ROMJeremy

    Superhero, you already missed the trade for the first story arc. Sorry to kick you in the gronch while you're down. I do agree that it's a fun read as well as a visual treat. For some reason it reminds me of an issue of Plop! that I had when I was younger.

  • March 7, 2012, 12:09 p.m. CST

    New 52 Continuity question...ASSHOLES HELP!!!!!!

    by Righteous Brother

    Ok - I'm not a continuity freak or anything - I'm pretty happy as long as a comic book story is well told....BUT....What the FUCK is going on at DC right now? I get that the JLA and Action Comics have been rebooted - I get all that. But what's going on with the Bat titles? I thought they were just carying on with the previous continuity, as they feature Nightwing, Damian Wayne etc......I thought they were just continuing Grant Morrissons recent run........however.....the latest issue of The Dark Knight features the new Superman (sans the red underpants) leading me to believe that the new Batman stories were actually part of the new 52 after all.............then Bane turns up, and starts making references to the Knightfall stories 'I broke you!' So what gives?? It's more confusing than ever.

  • March 7, 2012, 12:12 p.m. CST

    I picked up the Honey Badger comic, it was fun

    by glenn_the_frog

    Despite the superman cover (and the frank miller back cover with ninjas) the inside is more of a nature documentary Looney Tunes crossed with that youtube video. it was a lot of fun though. And really profane.

  • March 7, 2012, 12:14 p.m. CST

    righteousbrother-they're picking and choosing their continuity

    by glenn_the_frog

    Basically any story that sold well or people liked, happened. Any story that sucked, is now swept under the rug. So, its a really really lame reboot as far as clean slates go. Batman and Green Lantern basically keep all their baggage and continuity. Why they didn't just do an actual clean slate Ultimate Line like Marvel, while keeping the old continuity books running for old fans, I can't figure.

  • March 7, 2012, 12:21 p.m. CST


    by optimous_douche

    All of the BIG batman events happened within the span of five years, making the reboot tarderer.

  • Fortunately, the title has been pretty good for a while.

  • March 7, 2012, 12:47 p.m. CST

    By the way RIP the DC Message Boards.

    by cookylamoo

    Fathergeek, promise us you'll never move AICN into the Zuckernet.

  • March 7, 2012, 12:47 p.m. CST

    DC tried an Ultimates-style line...

    by Dingleberry Jones

    it was the All-Star line and it was a fiasco. The All Star Superman book was very good, while the god-damn Batman book was pretty brutal, in that it was pretty to look at but brutal to read. Both series were terrible when it came to coming out in a timely manner, which didn't help the concept from continuing/expanding.

  • March 7, 2012, 12:47 p.m. CST

    All the BIG Batman events happened within five years, which means...

    by Subtitles_Off

    that little shit Damian was conceived at least 5 years before Batman ever met Talia Al Ghul. Don't try to make sense out of it. You can't. They should've re-booted Batman along with the rest and eliminated plagues, earthquakes, time-travel, and It's-A-Small-Bat-World-After-All, but they couldn't because they haven't finished with all that nonsense yet (and that nonsense was popular among the *Gotta Have My Own Batman* crowd). That's why I have always preferred out-of-continuity books. They can stand alone, and you can try to squeeze them together or not, depending on your personal taste. The much vaunted *soap opera* aspect of on-going comic books never appealed to me. Don't even get me started on sidekicks.

  • March 7, 2012, 1:05 p.m. CST


    by phifty2

    Yes, no DC message board sucks.

  • 48 pages with some ads of VERY professionally drawn and colored artwork and a fun as hell story. Compared to the Justice League and Action Comics charging that much for good looking books which are shorter and not much fun. Plus it proves that a great colorist can work really well with an old school comic book artist. BRAVO! Oh, and Douche check out Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker on DVD/Blu-Ray. It is awesome. I wrote a review for it on AICN ages ago but I can't find the link right now.

  • March 7, 2012, 1:22 p.m. CST

    Rom Jeremy...thanks for the heads up on Orc Stain!

    by superhero

  • March 7, 2012, 1:35 p.m. CST

    Ultimate Spider-Man isn't controversial because the new kid is blaxican

    by Pete Michaelson

    It's because Peter Parker is Spider-Man and killing him off came off as a lame attempt at generating controversy in and of itself. If USM had started out with Peter Parker being a black kid from the Bronx, I think most people would have been on-board. I never saw anyone get bent out of shape over revamping Nick Fury as a Samuel L. Jackson clone, so come on.

  • Well, at least the artist didn't draw a stereotypical exaggerated booty.

  • March 7, 2012, 2:28 p.m. CST

    You never saw people make a fuss about the black Nick Fury?

    by u.k. star

    And you don't think people were making a big deal about the new Spider-Man being mixed race? Then I don't know what you've been reading because there's been a ton of crap about booth issues; much of it it racist. Not sure how you missed it to be honest. Killing Peter Parker wasn't just a stunt, it was well handled and a great way of dealing with hte consequences of a child playing hero and making adult enemies. You'd think, logically, that having a totally different Spider-Man with different powers would have made the whole thing easier than making Parker black / mixed race. It isn't even the "real" Spider-Man, but people have to complain about stuff and the racists and homophobes (Who are reading books about helping others and tolerance because?) need to complain.

  • March 7, 2012, 2:30 p.m. CST

    Still not thrilled with Ultimate Spider-Man

    by drewlicious

    Don't get me wrong. I like Miles Morales.....just not nearly as much as I liked Peter Parker. I thought they handled is death beautifully but so much character went out the window as a result. He was the only guy in the whole Ultimates universe that was relateable. It also came across as astoundingly cruel to kill himi after the unspeakable amount of suffering the character went through since Ultimatum. Aunt May should have dropped dead from shock, she almost did during the Clone saga.

  • March 7, 2012, 2:33 p.m. CST

    Ultimate Spider-Man

    by maxwell's hammer

    I think some of the complaints would carry more weight if the people complaining appeared to have read the book. It seems like a lot of people throwing around the 'Peter dying is a gimmick' complaints are just doing so on principal, because the book itself is quite good, and Peter's death is put to great use in setting up a great new character in Miles Morales. If you dont like the new comic for what it is, that's fair. But I don't hear a lot of people saying it's a bad book. Just a lot of people saying they won't read it because 'that's not Spider-Man!!'

  • March 7, 2012, 3:13 p.m. CST

    Ultimate Spider Man

    by brad meyers

    I never understood what happened to Peter Parker after he seemingly drowned in Ultimatum. Did they ever reveal how he survived? (only to kill him again)

  • March 7, 2012, 3:13 p.m. CST

    This argument is beyond tired, but I'm bored, so i'll make it

    by gooseud

    I refer you, ladies and gentlemen, to "Poundcake" by Van Halen. Its a perfectly acceptable song. It rocks to a perfectly acceptable degree. It has 80's style sexual innuendo down to a T. There is no earthly reason for anyone to dislike it if you are a Van Halen fan. Yet that song is totally forgotten, and if Van Halen attempted to play it at a concert in 2012 they would get crickets chirping. Why? Because, for all its merits on its own, in a ISNT VAN HALEN. Van Halen has Diamond Dave singing the songs. Period. End of discussion. Despite the fact that "Poundcake" (or, for example, Best of Both Worlds, another perfectly acceptable Hagar Van Halen song) have 3/4ths of the original lineup playing isnt Van Halen. Which brings us to Ultimate Spider Man. Its a great book, I'm sure, on its own merits. It has alot of echoes of Spider Man past. isnt Spider Man. Peter Parker is Spider Man. Thats it. It has nothing to do with race, and everything to do with 30+ years of affection and kindness that people have built up for Peter Parker.

  • March 7, 2012, 3:15 p.m. CST

    Did you guys hear about the Hickman speech at the Image Expo?

    by gooseud

    Where he basically shat on working for Marvel?

  • March 7, 2012, 3:20 p.m. CST

    @ maxwell's hammer.

    by 3774

    You hit the nail on the head. Sorry, couldn't resist. But at least it gives people cause to mindlessly complain, and use stupid, unfunny words like 'blaxican'. That's a sort of value, I guess. To somebody, somewhere. Somehow.

  • March 7, 2012, 3:31 p.m. CST


    by 3774

    ...for the record, I think you're wrong. Completely, hopelessly, wrong. Not only about Spider-Man, but Van Halen as well. What's nice though, is that you were considerate enough to let people know they'd be wasting their time explaining why, with the 'period, end of discussion' declaration. I wish that more My Personal Opinion Is Indisputable Fact people were as up front as you. I have not heard anything about the Hickman speech, but a link would be awesome. 80's, drive-on-guitar awesome.

  • March 7, 2012, 3:33 p.m. CST

    Whoops. I ment 'drill', not 'drive'.

    by 3774

    I'm tired.

  • March 7, 2012, 3:46 p.m. CST

    maxwell's hammer That's it exactly...

    by u.k. star

    So much of that nonsense going on.

  • March 7, 2012, 3:58 p.m. CST

    No it isn't Spider-Man - it's Ultimae Spider-Man...

    by u.k. star

    Sow hat's the problem? Really? When so many people who have also been reading Spider-Man for most of their lives , or Ultimate Spider-Man for the past several years can read the new comic and like it, why are some so controlled by some illogical force that they can't read a Spider-Man comic without Peter Parker? We had people saying the same things when Star Trek: The Next Generation came out, they ended up watching anyway. Also let's stop with the absolutes. I'm not saying that everyone who has an issues with Miles is a racist or has issues because of ace problems, but an awful lot of them do and are nasty, foul and ignorant about it. That's just a fact and it isn't hard to confirm either. a 10 second internet search will find you all the proof you need of that. But please stop trying to pretend that they don't exist, or even that a significant proportion of the complaints have't either been race related or put in racist / insensitive arguments...we've already seen further proof of that here today. It's a good book, that's what matters. I didn't stop reading Iron Man or Captain America when Stark or Rogers were no longer the heroes (dead or alive) Besides, that Parker guy i in about 100 comics a week in the "real" Marvel universe so I still get to read about him all the time.

  • March 7, 2012, 4:01 p.m. CST

    To be fair...

    by Joenathan

    I believe there arfe a handful of people who erroneously believe that Ultimate Spider-man isn't good without Peter Parker. I believe some of them actually do exist, just like I believe there are a few people out there who actually LIKED the Birds of Prey TV show. I believe Goose and few others that show up here might be a part of those people, but I also think Maxwell's Hammer and U.K. star have it the most right of all: Most of the fuckwads still objecting to the new Ultimate Spider-man are fuckstick racists. Maybe not white sheet hillbillys douchebag racists, but more likely that benign kind of "minorities are cool as long as they know their place/I have a black friend" yuppie type of racist. And as for the others, they just haven't read the books, that much is apparent as soon as the join the debate. Here's the Ultimate answer though, the one true light that sends all the cockroaches and idiots and bigots scurrying, and that is: If you love Peter Parker so fucking much, go read any one of the 487,000 other titles he appears in each month. Idiots.

  • March 7, 2012, 4:05 p.m. CST

    I'd also like to hear Hickman's speech

    by Joenathan

    I love his work, but I'll preface my response to it by saying: anybody who goes swimming and complains that they got wet is a fucking moron. "Oh, boo hoo. I have to work for a huge corporation who owns my creations, but then I do get to sit home all day and make up superhero stories. Boo hoo." There is no complaint in this modern day and age that will hold water. If your job is to professionally make comics, and you get paid pretty well (and the big names do), but the company owns what you make and it's just too awful for you to bear: QUIT! I'll send in my resume in your absense, asshead.

  • March 7, 2012, 4:07 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    I am sad to hear that he's leaving Fantastic Four, that means that most likely, I will be too.

  • March 7, 2012, 4:15 p.m. CST

    All Star

    by Joenathan

    I don't think that was an honest attempt at a new Universe, that was an attempt at free-of-continuity books about icon characters by big names. All Star Batmandid suck balls though... I think they aborted an attempt that became that Superman in a hoodie one shot. I think they stayed away from an Ultimate line, mainly because they didn't want it to be called DC's Ultimate line. I also think somebody (I blame Johns, because I like Morrison better, even though it was probably Morrison) pulled a diva fit and derailed the whole relaunch and turned it into this poor limping misfire of a reboot

  • March 7, 2012, 4:21 p.m. CST

    Actually Batman's been around longer than 5 yrs...

    by MrMajestic

    In the nuDC Batman's been around a lot longer than 5 yrs since it's stated in JLA, which do take place 5 yrs ago, that he's been an urban legend for a while now. Ergo how long it's been? Who knows but longer than 10 since that Damian's age. I have no problem with Miles Morales since he's just a new kid wearing the Ultimate Spidey mantle. Whereas I have a much bigger problem with black Nick Fury... So did this Nick Fury participate in WW2? If so does he take that longevity formula and also how the heck did a black man from that era get to the rank of colonel in a pre-Korean era, ie pre non-segregated armed forces? Then again I have a big problem with the treatment of black guys in the Ultimate line, they're all portrayed as Mandingo-types all fixated on getting some tail. It's distasteful and reductionist.

  • March 7, 2012, 4:27 p.m. CST

    Joenathan is probably right about Johns

    by Greg Nielsen

    The reboot didn't reboot Green Lantern at all and Batman became the Scott Snyder show (which at least isn't a downgrade at all). If anything needed the reboot though, it's probably Green Lantern. It's become way to silly. Also, I think he ran out Alan Moore and Steve Englehart ideas to expand/rip off. So, he's a bit SOL in the wind right now. Maybe once Scott Snyder finally turns Alec Holland into Swamp Thing, they can set him Loose on Green Lantern and see if he's as versatile and great as everyone says he is.

  • March 7, 2012, 4:42 p.m. CST

    Totally diggin' Justice League

    by DavidBanner

  • March 7, 2012, 4:45 p.m. CST

    Wished they restarted Batman but

    by DavidBanner

    I understand why they didn't. Batman was selling and so was Green Lantern. However I think it would have been cool to restart Batman solo for a year and then have Dick Grayson enter as Robin.

  • March 7, 2012, 4:56 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    Fury was one of the many African American soldiers who were experimented on during WW2 as a precursor to the super-soldier program. It worked on him, and after lots of black ops stuff and eventually being injured by Ultimate Wolverine in Desert Storm, (how he lost his eye) he was promoted and now runs SHIELD. I also think his blood from the tests might have been one of things used to create mutants, or maybe that was just Logan, I can' remember. Anyway, I believe this was covered in the Ultimate Doom storyline. You shouldn't have a problem with it, since it's a separate universe.

  • March 7, 2012, 5:10 p.m. CST

    Van Halen vs. Van Hagar

    by sonnyhooper

    see, now this is an debate worth having imo. to me it's totally unfair to compare the two, because even though eddie, alex and mike anthony were still in the band VH became a totally diffrent thing when sammy joined. when dave was in the band VH was a strait up hard rock party band and indeed they strode the earth like the rock gods that they were. but as soon as sammy came in, things changed but not so much in a bad way. VH became more of a power pop/rock band. the best example of this is the totally awesome song RIGHT NOW. fucking killer song, kick ass video, but make no mistake it's a pop song with electric guitar in it. <p> and yeah, you can say both versions of the band fall under the basic generic term rock, but back then, in the glory days of music, rock had many subtle flavors and shades. pop rock was a totally different thing than hard rock which was different from classic rock <p> and don't even get me started on the bullshit they are trying to pass off as classic van halen on tour right now. dave may be back in the band, but classic van halen is dave, eddie, alex and MICHEAL FUCKING ANTHONY. period. don't get me wrong wolfgang is probably a great kid and all, but he's not the fucking bass player in Van Halen. <p> it's the same thing with Guns and Roses. GnR is axl, slash, duff, izzy and steven. Axl can call the band he is fronting guns and roses all he wants but in reality, it a fucking glorified guns and roses cover band and axl should know that. in a perfect world the original Van Halen would be out on tour right now with the original Guns and Roses and there would be world peace because so much ass would be getting kicked it would be silly.

  • March 7, 2012, 5:13 p.m. CST

    Restarting Green Lantern....

    by Greg Nielsen

    would've been 10x's cooler. I mean the dude could've gone into space and actually done something other than run into another candy colored idiot. The Guardians of Galaxy could be simply fascist instead of incompetent fascists. The majority of the completely rebooted titles have benefited so far and Green Lantern could've too.

  • March 7, 2012, 5:18 p.m. CST

    All Star Batman: NOT THAT BAD

    by Majin Fu

    Issue 9, where Robin almost accidentally kills Hal Jordan is a modern classic, in my opinion; a lesson in sentiment pushed to the brink of absurdity. Plus, I'll admit I cannot stand Hal Jordan so it's hard for me not enjoy watching him get totally pwned by a little child. Consider, like what Morrison was doing in ASS, Miller was creating a version of a character with an extensive past while accentuating his defining traits, in this case Bruce Wayne's tragic alienation from his community, ensuing lack of social graces and awkwardness as a father figure (makes sense since he had no parents), and the smugness inherent of a man who is so overcome by hubris, he looks down on a guy who possesses godlike powers (Hal), simply because he knows he could do so much better. Yes, most of it is not subtle AT ALL and some of the dialog is JUST AWFUL, but it's not entirely bleak. At least them pictures is purty too.

  • March 7, 2012, 5:58 p.m. CST

    Justice League ...

    by Tom Fremgen

    yeah very unsatisfying. I have my fingers crossed for the next story- oh boy. Plug- The newest issue of Cindy Li has been posted! Check it out-

  • March 7, 2012, 6:15 p.m. CST

    The story of Hickman's speech

    by gooseud

    My LCS guy is rapidly becoming one of the rock stars of the retail side of comics (In the last 6 months alone, he has had signings with Blair Butler signing Heart, the Avatar press guys are coming in for the new Crossed book, in 2 weeks he has the Peter Panzerfaust crew coming in, 2 weeks ago he had the Luther Strode guys come in, and the list goes on) and he was actually invited by Image to come out to speak at the Image Fest about the relationship of retail to the comics companies. Long story short, Hickman also spoke at the convention, and said point blank (I;m paraphrasing slightly, but this is his words not mine) that any Big Two work he does is "whoring himself out to put food on the table" and his heart and true creative spirit is 100% in his creator owned stuff. To put this in context, apparently this wasnt some rabid call to arms, it was more matter-of-fact, just being honest, mildly sheepish type comment. Which of course was greeted with mass applause. Take his statement for whatever you think its worth.

  • March 7, 2012, 6:20 p.m. CST

    Ok, I can admit I could be wrong

    by gooseud

    I cant imagine in 2012 that people are pissed because Miles is a minority. That seems so absurd as to make me laugh, but several people who's opinion I trust on here are saying it could be so, so I guess it could be so. WTF people, its 2012!! LOL regardless, let me be clear: I have had my problems in the past with the "stunt cast-y" feel of Miles's appointment as the new Spidey, but only on a managerial, editorial, "Lets see how high we can trend on Twitter" level, not as it applies to the quality or lack thereof in the story. The book is fine, its a perfectly good book. All I was saying is, some people might reject the book simply because it isnt Peter, although I guess race could play a part in that that I might not be privy to.

  • March 7, 2012, 6:22 p.m. CST

    Pink, your wrong on VH

    by gooseud

    You might be right on Ult Spidey, but Sammy is currently selling 500 tickets to his shows with Chickenfoot while VH is selling out 20k arenas. The people have spoken. The idea that Hagar VH has any merit to 99.999999999% of the planet is an interesting view, but one in the distinct minority. Really distinct. Like particle of sand floating through the cosmos level of minority here.

  • March 7, 2012, 6:46 p.m. CST

    The Hoodie's Not Dead Yet

    by optimous_douche

    EARTH ONE is still alive and breathing. Shane Davis showed me the pencils for Volume II of Superman and Batman was in this month's Previews. Personally, I want more of this world. And what the fuck is with the hoodie hate? Seriously, people wear hoodies. I;m wearing one right now. A hoodie is way more accessible and disposable than a pair of tights or a freaking three piece suit. This is supposed to be OUR world. Hoodies and carbon run rampant in our reality.

  • March 7, 2012, 6:47 p.m. CST

    Van Halen Guys

    by optimous_douche

    Has Bluewater infiltrated the talkbacks?

  • So Damian can be ten. But he still can't be a believable character. A ten year-old kick-ass. Gawd, who thinks this shit up? Oh yeah, Grant Head-Up-the-Ass Morrison.

  • March 7, 2012, 7:13 p.m. CST

    optimus - I loved the Earth One Superman

    by DavidBanner

    I'm a huge Supes fan. I'm really enjoying the new 52, loved the pre-52, Christopher Reeve Superman, Smallville - Welling, Lois & Clark -Cain, Bruce Timmverse. Superman is my favorite superhero. I think the Earth One Superman is a cool take. Can't wait for the 2nd book. Superman Returns was lousy. Hope Man Of Steel is good. Geoff Johns - Gary Frank Batman! I'm there. burned out on Batman otherwise. Although I'm really enjoying Catwoman, Batwoman, and Nightwing.

  • March 7, 2012, 7:14 p.m. CST

    Damian is annoying...wished they rebooted

    by DavidBanner

  • March 7, 2012, 7:19 p.m. CST


    by DavidBanner

    I understand what you're saying. Although I've gotta admit, I've been enjoying the Guardians spin-off. Probably because I like the Kyle Raynor character. However I think all the tension among the "rainbow" of ring bearers is pretty cool. And having Gommy and Kyle working together is pretty entertaining.

  • March 7, 2012, 7:51 p.m. CST

    I'm wearing a hoodie right now. No hate here.

    by 3774

    You know what would have been neat? If they would have gotten anyone, and I mean just about *anyone*, to design the looks for Earth 2 other than Lee. Wouldn't it have made artistic sense, that if these alternate take characters are supposed to have developed in a very radically differently way, that should be reflected with a completely different design sensibility? Not to mention making the aesthetic of the DCverse that much more diverse and interesting? Look, I think I've established how much I despise the ground that that fuck-wit Jim Lee walks on. But set that aside for a moment, and think about what I'm saying. Search your feelings. You know it's true. And you call the synthesizer-laden 1984 'real rock', but 'For Unlawful' and the like pop rock? Erm. Ok.

  • March 7, 2012, 7:56 p.m. CST

    Earth One

    by Hedgehog000

    Yeah, I think this was meant to be DCs Ultimate concept, but I was very disappointed in E1 Superman. I was hoping for a real reimagining what Superman would be like if he really first appeared in the 21st century rather than in the 1930s which is how he's handled, still working a job that hasn't made sense in decades, still the boy scout, and still dating Lois Lane. They should have look at Busiek's Superman in our world book for a better idea on how to reimagine him.

  • March 7, 2012, 7:59 p.m. CST

    USM - The Return of Peter Parker

    by Hedgehog000

    Apparently Ultimate Peter Parker is returning - in Ultimate Spiderman the new Disney cartoon series. Hopefully, Joenathan won't die of heart break when they bring him back in the comic book too. For the record, I've found the new version reasonably entertaining though not nearly as good as certain fanatical boosters on this board.

  • March 7, 2012, 8:34 p.m. CST


    by Hedgehog000

    My problem with the Ultimates has always been that being "realistic" kind of turned into everyone has to be an asshole. It wasn't too bad at first because it was so over the top especially with Millar writing, but then it just kind of got ridiculous with armies of Giant Men and everybody shooting up Hulk serum. I also got tired of the ridiculous levels of "real-politik". Nick Fury being a Samuel L Jackson inspired creation was kind of clever at first but then he became such an evil, Machivellian bastard that I was glad when they ditched him in the Supreme Power verse - too bad he had to come back even worse. Of course, if they've hit a reset, maybe I'll check it out again. I actually am interested in efforts to update my favorite heroes - I'm just rarely satisfied with the results.

  • March 7, 2012, 9:07 p.m. CST

    actually Pink, for the record...

    by sonnyhooper

    ....i don't believe i ever used the term 'real rock'. i was just using the (admittedly generic) terms 'pop' rock and 'hard' rock to make a distinction between the direction the band took after Hagar joined as opposed to what VH was with Roth. but your point is taken, 1984 was probably the most 'pop' album the original VH line-up put out, while For Unlawful was without a doubt the 'heaviest' album from the Hagar years. <P> again, i'm not trying to say i think one line-up is 'better' than the other, just trying to point out that they really are two different bands when you get down to it. <p> i do have to admit that 1984 is probably my least favorite album from the Roth era. I always felt Women and Children First was the high water mark for the original line up. but i digress. <p> i just see the Hagar years as more 'pop' because all the really big hits from that era seem more like pop song than rock songs to me. stuff like Dreams, Love walk in, Feels so good, and When it's love. all of those song were massive hits for VH and they all lean a bit more pop than hard rock imo. <p> and again, i'm not suggesting 5150, ou812, and f.u.c.k didn't have a bunch of other songs that kicked major ass and had face melting guitar solos, i'm just saying the really big hits for Van Hagar had more of a pop feel to them. heck, back in '86 '87 you couldn't go ANYWHERE without hearing Dreams playing in the background, it was like one of 12 videos Mtv played over and over again (back when m tv actually had music on it) but Dreams is a great pop rock song, no doubt about it. <p> but like i said, i don't think it should be a dave vs. sammy thing, i think we should all just be happy that we got to enjoy both of those guys in the band and treat them as separate but equal. and, as always, the less said about the Gary Cherone years the better.

  • March 7, 2012, 9:20 p.m. CST

    and i also own 3 or 4 hoodies myself....

    by sonnyhooper i don't get the hate for the Earth 1 Supeman book either. <p> remember back when George Reeves was playing superman and clark kent always had on one of those hipster douche bag fedora hats? you know, because lots of men wore hats back then and it was actually the fashion trend of that day (except the men back then didn't wear those hats ironically like the hipster douche bags wear them now-a-days) but any way, do you suppose if they had the internet back in the 1950 a bunch of fan boy would get all pissy about clark kent wearing a hat? do you think they would be all... 'oh that stupid fedora clark always has on is just a lame attempt to make him look trendy and with todays fashion.' <p> yeah, i doubt it too.

  • March 7, 2012, 9:39 p.m. CST

    Hickman's speech and hoodies

    by Joenathan

    Ah, well that's alright. Doing it to pay the bills is fine, it's a smart thing to do and if it affords him opportunities to pursue other stuff, good for him. I like that he isn't kvetching about it. Doiuchem no Hoodie hate here for me, I just couldn't think of any other way to easily identify the story I was referring to, because I forgot the name. I am also wearing a hoodie. Urban Jedi, yo.

  • March 7, 2012, 9:39 p.m. CST


    by gooseud

    Whether discussing Van Halen or Ult Spidey, thats what people dont seem to understand: the quality of the comic or the quality of 5150 as an album, or the quality of whatever else we could be discussing, it doesnt matter sometimes. Sometimes, people just want what they want. David Lee Roth can literally barely sing anymore. Where is he these days? Oh right, headlining a major tour. Where's Hagar these days? Hanging in his bar in Cabo waiting for the phone to ring. AND THATS OK. Its actually not really fair to Miles or the writers of that book, but thats the harsh truth: id venture to say 70% of comics readers will never view that book as anything but a curiousity because of the shadow of Peter Parker. They want what they want and saying "But but but.......the book is really good/"Dreams" is a great song!" misses the entire point.........and yes, Roth VH is harder edged rock and Sammy VH is more lovey dovey pop songs.

  • March 7, 2012, 9:42 p.m. CST

    10 year old Robin

    by Joenathan

    You can't call foul on a little kid bad ass in a world where a guy makes giant green boxing gloves with a magic wish ring to fight crime. It's not allowed. If a guy can build a set of wings that can actually fly, a ten year old can kick your ass. That's how things work.

  • March 7, 2012, 9:43 p.m. CST

    Joe, it apparently didnt come off as whining

    by gooseud

    It was far more like "Whatever else I might do for those guys, my heart is in this room with you", that was more the vibe.....which I have zero problem with whatsoever, for a writer as creative as Hickman, I would expect nothing less. BUT.........heres the kicker.......I like his corporate stuff far better then his creator owned stuff, he is exhibit A of a guy who I believe does better work when he is being.......gently guided, I guess is the word, steered? prodded? shaped? an editorial staff.

  • March 7, 2012, 9:44 p.m. CST

    Ultimate Peter

    by Joenathan

    They'll never bring him back. Bendis has said so and this is his bitch in the same way GL in Johns

  • March 7, 2012, 9:45 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    I am looking forward to the cartoon. Speaking of: Young Justice is back on and that show is pretty good. You DC heads should be watching it, if you're not already. Lots of good cameos and regular Captain Marvel usage

  • March 7, 2012, 9:47 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    They HAVE NOT reset the Ultimates. IT is still awesome. Do NOT read it. You will NOT like it, it is too awesome for the likes of you.

  • March 7, 2012, 9:51 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    I am with you on Hickman. I was really interested in his creator owned stuff, but it's got a lot of narrative holes and leaps, whereas his MArvel work has been fantastic. So yeah, maybe--like Morrison--he performs better when just a little bit constrained.

  • March 7, 2012, 9:54 p.m. CST

    Ultimate Spider-man

    by Joenathan

    Seriously, it is a good book. Also, so is Wolverine and the X-men. I'm enjoying the hell out of the students.

  • March 7, 2012, 10:01 p.m. CST

    Did Kick-Ass 2 #7 drop today?

    by Ye Not Guilty

    I haven't been able to make it to a shop today to check the new comics.

  • The whole *universe* thing? DC should just let Marvel have that one. Here's why I can call foul on ten year-old ass-kickers...Batman is supposed to be the smartest dude in tights. Smart guys don't put teenagers in panties and pixie boots and run out to fight crime. And criminals don't allow ten year-olds to kick their asses. Just because comic books are generally silly, they don't all have to be, and I'd rather Batman comic books, especially, wouldn't be.

  • March 7, 2012, 10:42 p.m. CST

    Comics silly? No.

    by Joenathan

    I prefer them unsilly too, but I only used GL as an extreme example, where as in reality, nothing about Batman is realistic enough for a boy sidekick to be that outlandish. If you call foul on the boy sidekick, then a guy in a bat outfit fighting crime falls apart too. Now, you can certainly say that you prefer your Batman without Robin, but to call Robin stupid is to call the entire thing stupid. It just doesn't work.

  • March 7, 2012, 10:43 p.m. CST

    Damian Wayne

    by Cyrus Clops

    Wasn't it intimated at some point, pre-reboot even, that Damian was artificially aged by Talia to some degree, hence accounting for the chronology problem?

  • March 8, 2012, 12:17 a.m. CST

    No, that would be silly...

    by Joenathan

  • March 8, 2012, 3:33 a.m. CST

    I'm dropping JLA....

    by Righteous Brother

    Really disappointed with #6. First appearance of Darkseid in the new 52 universe, and it may have well have been Doomsday, or Mongul or any of those crappy Superman villains. I don't think he even spoke, it was just a slugfest. It was Jim Lee's last issue for a while too.

  • March 8, 2012, 6:36 a.m. CST

    Cyrus, I think that was one of Damian's zillion clones.

    by Subtitles_Off

  • March 8, 2012, 6:45 a.m. CST

    joenathan, the thing about silly always is, one gets to pick and choose.

    by Subtitles_Off

    That which is too silly from that which is just silly enough. Yeah, you could probably accuse me of inconsistency, because I buy into an adult muscleman fighting crime dressed as a bat but won't buy into a little boy dressed as a fairy, fighting the same crime. In terms of sheer math, though, you must admit, unless you draw the line somewhere, your tolerance out-stupids mine to the Nth degree. Let's smack the edge of the universe with our super-fist and see if one of the sidekick corpses doesn't crawl out of its grave. Let's rejigger our timeline to insist the one that everybody on the street still thinks of as The One was really one of many for only about a year --- eighteen months, tops. Let's just assume, since the guy dressed as a bat can travel through time shooting off ray guns at alien Gods, or whatever, they all can do it and thereby stay young enough to work the pixie-booted look forever, or at least until the rich guy can buy them wings to fly away on. I mean, according to you, we gotta accept it all. Because, we just gotta.

  • March 8, 2012, 6:57 a.m. CST


    by maxwell's hammer

    The fact that you so casually dismiss the new Ultimate Spider-Man as some quaint, little read novelty belies how erroneous your assumptions are. The book sold nearly 50,000 units in January, which is it's highest number in 3 years. I'd say that of the Ultimate Spider prone comic buyers put there, those who have dismissed Miles Morales are the ones in the minority.

  • March 8, 2012, 7:19 a.m. CST

    Kids are fierce and frightening

    by optimous_douche

    They are a modern terror of wiliness and dark dark mojo No sense of consequence or repercussions, they can run under your legs and slice your taint in one fell swoop. Don't just fear Robin, fear all children, they have the dexterity of a real human but their brains won't fully develop for another twenty years. You have been warned, the child apocalypse is coming.

  • March 8, 2012, 7:30 a.m. CST


    by Hedgehog000

    Money talks, if the cartoon's a hit, Ultimate Pete will be back and Bendis' will be more than happy to go back on his non-promise. BTW - yeah, I'm sure my problem with the Ultimates is that it's just too awesome - really.

  • March 8, 2012, 7:46 a.m. CST

    Suspension of disbelief

    by Hedgehog000

    Sometimes I actually find it easier to buy Superman pushing a planet than Robin beating down a dozen guys. After all, Superman is defined as having amazing powers, accept that and everything else is easy to buy into. Robin though is supposed to just be a highly trained, very athletic human. Even taken to theoretical limits, such a kid would be pretty lucky to take on one reasonably in shape adult much less multiple ones.

  • March 8, 2012, 8:32 a.m. CST

    He aims for the criminal's taint?

    by Subtitles_Off

    No wonder he dresses like a girl.

  • March 8, 2012, 9:23 a.m. CST

    Nerdfight! Nerdfight! Nerdfight!

    by 3774

    Optimus is sorta correct, actually. There has been an alarming statistical increase in the number of Americans with personality disorders. This has been shown for all clusters, but B is the highest. It's the nastiest, 'incurable' type...containing everything from the Joker (antisocial), to evil ex-girlfriends of legend (borderline), and evil ex-boyfriends of legend (narcissistic). Sociologists theorize that it's all directly a result of the 'all about me, I'm entitled to everything' mentality of modern life and pop culture. So the kids we are creating are going to be a nightmare to behold in the future, and not in a typical 'kids these days are the worst' type of generational bitching. Despite that, I suspect Optimus might be posting while high. The insight may be accidental. Nobody has an opinion on the Earth 2 art? You'd rather argue over young boys in tights?

  • March 8, 2012, 9:42 a.m. CST

    true that, quality never matters when it comes to nostalgia...

    by sonnyhooper

    ...and the current VH tour is all about nostalgia, because as you pointed out, Daves voice is shot and the new album is crap. but i doubt very much that Sammy is sitting by the phone waiting for anyone to call. Sammys actually one of those smart rock stars that makes more money off stage than on it. the dude recently sold his controlling interest in cabo wabo tequila for 80 million dollars. thats 80. Million. dollars. put that together with all of the other enterprises that Hagar has his hand in and it's no wonder they guy has no use or need for reunion tours and nostalgia. <p> me personally, if i had a choice between being the guy that has to go back on tour because i can't afford to buy pain killers, whiskey, and hair plugs or being the guy who never has to go on tour again unless he feels like it, (because i have an empire that makes money for me while i sleep), i'm gonna choose to be the second guy every time. but thats just me. <p> and again this isn't about one version of Van Halen being 'better' than the other, just pointing out the reality of the situation. Dave and Eddie 'need' the reunion, Sammy doesn't.

  • March 8, 2012, 9:59 a.m. CST

    Your 90% right Sonny

    by gooseud

    Did you read Sammy's book? Granted, it COULD, in theory, be Sammy just making stuff up, but given past history, I dont see any reason it isnt accurate.........and it is fucking SCATHING, Sammy is probably better off rid of that den of methheads and egos. BUT........if an angel came down and said "Sammy, you have to give back the 80 Mil, but in return you get to be back on stage with a totally clean Eddie with his playing ability back to 100% caoacity, singing Panama in front of 20k fans.....whats it gonna be?", I think Sammy would keep the 80 mil. But he would pause and give it a longggggg thought first LOL

  • March 8, 2012, 10:01 a.m. CST

    Yeah thats the interesting USM dichotomy, Maxwell

    by gooseud

    Its doing well in sales, but there certainly seems to be a VERY vocal contingent online who hate that book (I do not count myself among them). That book seems to inspire alot of passion, you never hear someone ripping........I dunno, Hawkman or something. Its a very popular book with a shitload of people that seem to actively hate it. Hmmm...........maybe Joe's right, maybe it IS racism. Who knows.

  • March 8, 2012, 10:22 a.m. CST

    oh yeah....

    by sonnyhooper

    ....i'm sure that Sammy would still want to get on stage with Eddie and kick all kinds of ass if the situation was ideal and everyone was clean and sober, i'm sure Sammy is still very proud of all the music he made with those guys, as well he should be. <p> but no, i haven't read Sammys book yet, but i did get the highlights from when he was on Howard Stern a while back, and yeah, it sounded pretty awful. the thing that makes me buy what Sammy says is that Michael Anthony seems to be on the outs with the group too, since he isn't part of the VH 'reunion'. ya gotta figure if Mikey and Sammy both don't want anything to do with the brothers Van Halen something has to be up.

  • March 8, 2012, 10:29 a.m. CST

    Has there been a rise pink

    by optimous_douche

    Or did we finally just add sub-set definitions to being an asshole. We keep saying there's a rise in cancer, but you can't tell me cavemen didn't die from tumors, they simply thought it was divine intervention.

  • March 8, 2012, 12:54 p.m. CST

    Anyone read Green Arrow? Also can we get some Artifacts reviews?

    by Greg Nielsen

  • March 8, 2012, 12:57 p.m. CST

    No, Subtitles

    by Joenathan

    I'm saying you have to accept it, but you don't have to read it. But most of all, I'm saying you can't stand in adult muscle man land and look over into child fairy crimefighter land and go: "That is stupid" What's the Kevin Smith joke (his only good one in years): "A comic convention is the only place in the world where a guy dressed like a Stormtrooper will look over at a guy dressed like Spock and go: Fucking geek."

  • March 8, 2012, 12:58 p.m. CST

    Miles Morales & racism

    by maxwell's hammer

    I honestly don't think the haters are all racists. I think they're more like the asshole talkbackers who see a teaser trailer for a movie, then gleefully shit all over it before the film is even out of post-production, because they assume their knee-jerk reaction is a self-evident fact, and the hyberbole with which they attack equals even more factualness! And while they are vocal, the only people who hear them complain are the people like us who regularly read comic book forums. In the real world, no one even knows they exist. In the meantime, the most people in three years are buying and enjoying Ultimate Spider-Man, completely oblivious of just how wrong their stupid opinion is!!

  • March 8, 2012, 12:59 p.m. CST

    Earth 2

    by Joenathan

    You know what would be awesome? If Earth 2 was actually just Pre-New 52 DC Earth One... GASP! DC! DC! DC! I just solved your problem for you! Hey! Hey! I want a percentage!

  • March 8, 2012, 1:03 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    You are foolish. If the cartoon is popular, Spider-man books will sell a few more. Those people (all seven of them) will stumble into comics stores and buy Amazing Spider-man or maybe Spectacluar. More likely, they will buy a video game. Some might pick up a trade of Ultimate Spider-man, but otherwise, as the numbers have proven over and over again through the years, the bleed over from the shows don't matter at all or change anything. Ultimate Peter Parker is dead! Long Live Miles Morales!

  • March 8, 2012, 1:05 p.m. CST

    Hmm is Earth 3 still the crime syndicate

    by Hedgehog000

    I always liked the evil JLA alternate universe. I think they need to update the idea that they'd be some kind of "Crime Syndicate" though, obviously they'd just be the government.

  • March 8, 2012, 1:08 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    There are a lot of people upset about Miles, which is funny, because before Miles it seemed like a similiar amount of folks were just pissed at Bendis. Add to that the fact they can find their Peter-fix in numerous other titles and their protesting all becomes a bit suspect, doesn't it? Also, just for fun, go look at the posts from the "upset" fans and count how many use words like "blaxican, PC, stunt, or appeasement" etc. Also, ask yourself how many people went rabid when Wally West took the mantle?

  • Obviously, comic book fans can't be too demanding on expecting a realistic portrayal of anyone in spandex but I'm not sure we still can't call out things we think that just go too far without being called hypocritical.

  • March 8, 2012, 1:24 p.m. CST

    Harvey Keitel as Wolverine? Arnold as Colossus?

    by wrx

  • March 8, 2012, 1:31 p.m. CST

    Sorry, history is on my side

    by Hedgehog000

    How many people have really stayed dead in comics? Uncle Ben, Gwen Stacy (I'm not really sure on that one), heck even Barry Allen came back - and he stayed dead for quite a few years. Not one of these return from the dead is as popular as ultimate pete - ok Superman and Batman were but their return was preplanned. So in spite of what would be a clear demand with large cash sales - you really think ultimate pete will never come back, merely because there is a radically different version starring in 616 marvel? If marvel thinks it'll sell, it will get made and one suspects the return of ultimate peter parker would sell very well. This doesn't even mean Miles Morales has to die or get shipped off to a boarding school in Alaska. But the logic of bringing back Pete at some point is too great.

  • March 8, 2012, 1:49 p.m. CST

    You can critique a comic

    by Joenathan

    And you don't have to support the ones you don't like, but to call one aspect of superhero comics "unrealistic" is stupid, because it's all unrealistic. It's not a valid critique

  • March 8, 2012, 1:56 p.m. CST

    Ultimate Peter

    by Joenathan

    It'll never happen. The Ultimate U doesn't have the same pattern of raising the dead as the regular U does, (except for Thor, but that's due to the Norse cycle, not fan-demand resuccitation), so history is actually NOT on your side. First off, they don't need to reanimate anyone. Other versions of all the dead characters exist elsewhere. Secondly, the purpose of the Ultimate U, especially now, is to go elsewhere then where the regular U did with the old characters and to create new stories and characters. If Ultimate Spider-man does drive business into the LCSs, you will see the regular universe Peter change to meet that demand, not the Ultimate U.

  • March 8, 2012, 2:14 p.m. CST

    Wow, just wow

    by Hedgehog000

    You're faith in the sanctity of the Ultimate U is shocking. Seriously, that universe has bounced all over the place. Didn't they flood the whole thing not long ago? If they can get a few more mini's on the return of Peter Parker plus another ongoing, I'm sure they would. Maybe not tomorrow, but sometime. And how would they change regular Peter to be more like ultimate Peter - deage him 10 years, send him back to high school, give him a lot more attitude? Seriously?

  • March 8, 2012, 2:23 p.m. CST

    Realism's not the issue

    by Hedgehog000

    Following your own rules is. If Robin is defined as being a well trained kid, then complaining when he lifts a tank is perfectly valid. Complaining when he beats up a couple of adults - maybe that should slide, it is a comic. Complaining when he beats up 20 adults at once - well, that's a lot more marginal. In Kickass, when Hitgirl beat up a couple of people, it looked cool and vaguely plausible - when she was up against 20, the Matrix like special effects that popped in kind of ruined it.

  • March 8, 2012, 3:22 p.m. CST

    Ultimate U

    by Joenathan

    Yes, they did flood it... and KILLED dozens of characters with regular U counterparts. Including Wolverine. Let's play: How many have come back...? And yes, they de-aged him for the movies, why not the comic? Or would that not make any sense?

  • March 8, 2012, 3:27 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    No, Hedgehog, once again your mad quest to stand in opposition to every correct thing I say has ended in failure, but on the upside, you have been elected the Mayor of Misunderstanding Village... Silver lining You see, complaining that robin lifts a tank WOULD BE valid. Why? Because it violates the rules of the world he lives in. You see, in the commonly accepted world he lives in, teen or child sidekicks whopping ass isn't outlandish, it's a Tuesday. But if he lifts a tank and doesn't have superpowers, that's stupid because it violates the rules. How's the joke go: "X2 was so unrealistic, there's no such thing as female fighter pilots..." Pointing out how any one specific part may be unrealistic is just a silly waste of time, your Honor.

  • March 8, 2012, 3:33 p.m. CST

    joenathan, don't be an ass. I can define stupid as anything I want.

    by Subtitles_Off

    You are not the Emperor of The Conotations of All Words. Continuing to think you are brands you as an insufferable twat. We get it, everything in superhero comics is stupid; therefore, it all must be stupid and cannot be otherwise. This is your argument? Yeah. Good on ya.

  • March 8, 2012, 3:55 p.m. CST


    by Hedgehog000

    You have to treat Joenathan like someone with Tourettes - you can't let the torrent of insults bother you. Once you do that, it can be fun to bait him over anything to do with USM, Ultimates or Brian Michael Bendis. On the other hand, arguing over comic book logic or the new 52 with him can become quite arduous - as in this case. Apparently though, by his own admission, I do stand in opposition to everything he says (he declared declaratively).

  • March 8, 2012, 4:08 p.m. CST


    by Joenathan

    Ok, first of all, yes, I am the Emperor of the Connotations of All Words, don't you watch the news? Second of all, the arguement is: calling something in comics unrealistic means you are stupid, because... duh. Third, I will concede ONE THING... admittedly, Hedgehog IS a Master-baiter...

  • March 8, 2012, 4:53 p.m. CST

    The guy who runs the LCS hates Batman...

    by Majin Fu

    Simply because he claims he is the least realistic hero of all time. According to him, a normal man simply could not battle inhuman foes AND fight crime without at some point being killed in action, or arrested by the police. So yeah, realism in comics has never been very important to me. Like many of you have already noted above, as long as you play by the rules established in the story, you're golden. Now can we please talk about why ASBAR does not suck balls? The new JLA sucks balls. Every redesign for the heroes of Earth 2 sucks balls. ASBAR is a hoot.

  • March 8, 2012, 5:11 p.m. CST

    As my grandmother would say, 'Good Lord!'

    by 3774

    http://www. blogcdn. com/www. comicsalliance. com/media/2012/03/earth-2-2-cover02. jpg It's a joke, right? They're not serious. Are they?

  • March 8, 2012, 5:18 p.m. CST

    @ Optimus.

    by 3774

    Yes, there has been a statistical, measurable rise, as conditions are measured (to the point of clinically-defined impairment). Dramatically so. And cavemen didn't do things like carefully craft 27 different kinds of poison for convenient consumption in a little paper cylinder. But you already knew that. You charmingly-persistent contrarian, you.

  • March 8, 2012, 5:21 p.m. CST

    pink: try using

    by Majin Fu

    It helps with all the random spaces when you copy and paste an url to the talkbacks.

  • March 8, 2012, 5:22 p.m. CST

    And yes, I'm afraid they're deadly serious

    by Majin Fu

  • March 8, 2012, 5:32 p.m. CST

    if they ever do upgrade this website...

    by sonnyhooper can only hope it will have stuff like hyperlinking, use of quotation marks, and an ignore feature, that way some talk backers will find themselves talking to no one but themselves about how awesome, clever, and right they think they are all of the time.

  • March 8, 2012, 5:44 p.m. CST

    Can someone explain the draw of Earth 2?

    by Joenathan

    What is it for anymore? And as it is now, does it even need to be a separate planet/dimension?

  • March 8, 2012, 6:03 p.m. CST

    Fair Enough Pink

    by optimous_douche

    But I just ran into some of my Gmas cousins at her funeral and I'll tell you, were they kids today they would be diagnosed with a plethora of mental impairments. And I'll take my cancer for the ability to live in warmth and outlive the cavemen by about 40 years.

  • March 8, 2012, 6:12 p.m. CST

    Draw of Earth 2

    by optimous_douche

    For fangeezers it's the nostalgia of visiting another each ala ELSEWORLDS For new readers, fuck if I know. And herein again is the fundamental problem with the reboot (keep in mind this is not coming from a reboot hater either), it relied to heavy on resurrecting contrivances of a past age including: * Earth 2 was originally born of it's not. * Many of the expanded universe characters. Green Arrow ain't selling because a guy that simply shoots arrows is not as cool as it was in 1945. Booster Gold, much as I love him, is the embodiment of America's consumption and fiscal frivolity in the 80s. He don't fly with kids like he used to. I can go on, but why don't you kids help. * The number 52 it self. A marketing gimmick to sell 52 books in a year on a weekly basis... Then for some reason we needed to introduce 52 worlds to the DC multiverse Then for some other inexplicable reason DC does nothing with the concept for like 3 years Then for some other other unknown and utterly random reason they keep this marketing gimmick that became a universe as canon in their newly rebooted fresh as a waist universe. Will I buy it? Yes, I'm old and I desperately miss Elseworlds. Will a new reader buy it? Probably, out of confusion. Will they get it and the purpose it serves in context to the new book they've been picking up. I'm thinking not so much.

  • March 8, 2012, 6:14 p.m. CST

    How Does Daisy Become Waist Apple?

    by optimous_douche

    Then for some other other unknown and utterly random reason they keep this marketing gimmick that became a universe as canon in their newly rebooted fresh as a waist universe.

  • March 8, 2012, 6:53 p.m. CST

    Earth 2: Rise of the Neckbeard Nostalgia

    by 3774

    The only reason I'm excited for Earth 2 is because of World's Finest. It's apparently the only way I will get to see Huntress. And also Power Girl, portrayed more meaningfully than just the context of a girlfriend. Past that I don't really care that much about Earth 2 itself, and having it ground through the patented Lee-moginizer makes me care even less. The intro blurb for the preview art on Power Girl had a vaguely douchy vibe I didn't like at all. We'll see. That mini-run on Huntress was fan-friggin'-tastic. It was perfect in every way, and I'm genuinely sad to see it end.

  • March 8, 2012, 8:42 p.m. CST

    Avengers 2 blurb from Whedon...

    by 3774

    http:// tinyurl. com/77rqcmd Interesting idea. But 'different, and smaller' goes completely against the Hollywood sequel law of 'same, but bigger'. Not comics, I know, but....opinions here are a little less FUCKING TITS, FACT and a little more reasoned...

  • March 8, 2012, 9:01 p.m. CST

    Douche - Earth 2

    by Joenathan

    I love Elseworlds, but Earth never hit the same thing for me. To me, Elseworlds was always like What ifs...? It was a random setting or twist or whatever. Where as Earth 2 has always seemed like just more superheroes that could just share the same world/dimension at this point. I mean, granted, I loved it when the JLA and the JSA teamed up to hunt for the Seven Soldiers, but that was a long time ago. Now...? Is it really needed?

  • March 8, 2012, 9:05 p.m. CST

    Avengers blurb

    by Joenathan

    He's just spitballing there, it doesn't sound like anything of substance really. And even then, I bet he's just referring to a MAsters of Evil story that involves personal villains from all of their pasts. I really hope they do a Cap 2 with Bucky/Winter Soldier story

  • March 8, 2012, 9:05 p.m. CST


    by Hedgehog000

    I dunno, whenever Hollywood people start talking about superhero movies they always start going on about exploring the characters and getting beneath the mask. That usually causes me great concern that they're going to ruin what we liked about the character in the first place. Whedon's written comics so maybe he can actually go somewhere like that and stay true to the concept, but from my memory, usually the best character related Avenger stories involved the people currently not on this version of the Avengers - Vision, Scarlet Witch, Wonderman, Wasp, Henry Pym - the non-big names. Talking sequel though does strike me as presumptuous. I haven't been that excited by what I've seen of the first movie - beyond a couple of good RDJ one liners.

  • March 8, 2012, 9:25 p.m. CST

    Wait this is pre Crisis Earth 2?

    by Hedgehog000

    With old Superman and the Green Lantern who can't handle wood? I dunno know, nobody really cared about Earth 2 on the first go around. Like I said, I could live with a new Earth 3 with an Irredeemable like Ultraman. An Earth S that moves the Marvel family back into their own universe might not be the worst idea either.