Thursday, September 27, 2007

My New Comics

This week’s best cover is Alter Ego #72. It honors the first appearance of the JLA in The Brave and the Bold #28.

Fall of Cthulhu #6, Boom Studios. New Storyline, New Horrors.

Uncle Sam and the Freedom Fighters #1, DC Comics. I’m giving this a look-see, as I’m an old fan of Sam.

Marvel Zombies: The Book of Angels, Demons, & Various Monstrosities #2, Marvel Comics. It’s an evil handbook to the Marvel Universe that includes the Zombies.

Terminator 2: Infinity #3, Dynamite Entertainment.

Army of Darkness: From the Ashes #3, Dynamite Entertainment.

Alter Ego #72, Twomorrows Publishing. I’ve been waiting for this retrospective on Captain Carrot!

Game Book:
Conan: The Roleplaying Game 2nd Edition Mongoose Publishing. This core rulebook is published in black and white not color like the previous addition but it’s thicker. Content over esthetic I guess.


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Last Tango in Paris

Last Tango in Paris is one of those shocking must see films that until recently I hadn’t gotten around to viewing. Well, I just watched it today… …although it was only the R rather than the NC-17 version. Is it the great film everyone says it is? Hell, don’t know, I’m just a simple guy and not attuned to the subtle aspects of art but I do see how it could have been both scandalous and a breakthrough for 1972 especially since it stars Marlon Brando. Regardless of what you might think of the film and its infamous butter scene, it has some of the best lines of any script I’ve ever come across.

Paul “If you look close, you’ll find me hiding behind my zipper”

Paul “Even if a husband lives 200 hundred fucking years, he'll never discover his wife's true nature. I may be able to understand the secrets of the universe, but... I'll never understand the truth about you. Never.”

Jeanne “What are we doing here?”
Paul “Let's just say we're taking a flying fuck at a rolling donut.”

Paul “Anyway, to make a long, dull story even duller, I come from a time when a guy like me used to come into a joint like this and pick up a young chick like you and... call her a 'bimbo'.”

Paul “I could dance forever! Oh, my hemorrhoid.”

Jeanne: “Let's drink a toast to our life in the hotel.”
Paul: “No fuck all that! Hey listen! Let's drink a toast to our life in the country.”
Jeanne “You're a nature lover? You didn't tell me that.”
Paul: “Oh, for chrissa-, I'm nature boy. Can't you see me with the cows and the chickenshit all over me? Huh?”
Jeanne “Oh, that's right. To the cows!”
Paul: “Cow.”
Jeanne “I will be your cow too.”
Paul “I get to milk you twice a day. How about that?”

Great stuff huh?

I think this scene kinda sums the whole film up for me (and for the love of god, it's definitely not work safe):

Remember ladies if a guy asks you to cut only two of your fingernails you know what he wants.


Stumptown Comics Fest Weekend in Portland, OR!

Well The Stumptown Comics Fest is almost here!

I'm particularly excited for the mini-comics workshop.

From the the fest site:
The Events list for this weekend's Stumptown Comics Fest has been updated, and it's HUUUGE!

Check it out!

We've got a pre-show party at Guapo Comics, a Drink-&-Draw benefit for the CBLDF, Two full days of panels and workshops including a full day of classes and curriculum presented by PNCA, Spotlights with each of our special guests, a showcase featuring the Too Much Coffee Man Opera, a Dr. Sketchy's Life Drawing session, Two official afterparties on Saturday night, and an unofficial post-Fest gathering at coffeeshop/gallery/pool hall/internet gaming hub Backspace!

Oh, plus a two-day guerilla art show at the Sequential Art gallery.

It is Comics Fest Weekend in Portland!

It’s nice to see other events springing up around the Fest itself.

We're still small so the Wizard folks won't usurp it for a while.


Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Green Arrow and Black Canary Wedding Special otherwise know as YUCK

I worried that I wasn’t really participating in the wider dialog about comics… So maybe that’s why I picked up the Green Arrow and Black Canary Wedding Special. Basically, I went back on my resolve to not buy new comics from the big 2 unless it’s really something I want like say Captain Carrot. Was I feeling left out? Maybe, but It’s hard to talk about comics when most of Marvel and DC offerings are off the table. Now though, after reading this so-called Wedding Special, I’m permanently cured of wanting to be on the comics’ bandwagon ever again. I’m thoroughly convinced that my desire to wait for the trade if the buzz is good is the correct method after this piece of garbage.

The DC thought process must have been something like this: “how can we make this wedding different from all other comics weddings that have come before? Oh, I know, kill off one of the main characters. That will really surprise ‘em! OK, let’s kill off Black Canary to get Ollie all upset… …oh wait, everybody thinks DC hates woman so we better kill of the Green Arrow instead. Oh, and it’s totally cool if woman have stripper parties and but men shouldn’t” Barf

Total Crap!

DC (the whole company and all of it’s titles) has jumped the shark IMO. It probably happened during Infinite Crisis but definitely by Amazons Attack and Countdown… I’m just glad I wasn’t paying attention, because this doggy doo is supposedly what passes for a comic book story nowadays. What-a-joke…

“Hey Time/Warner you have dipshits running DC Comics into the ground.”

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Bionic Woman

I was in need of a good sci-fi action adventure so I watched the first episode of the Bionic Woman remake On Demand. I found it mildly entertaining. It premieres “for real” on NBC this coming September 26th, or you can download it.

David Eick who (along with Ronald D. Moore) developed the new Battlestar Galactica, created this show and like BSG, this is a reimagining of a '70s program in this case the original Bionic Woman (duh). So if you like BSG you might like this. It stars Michelle Ryan in the role of Jamie Sommers. Mood wise, Bionic Woman is a cross between Heroes and Alias with a touch of Dark Angel. It’s got potential but in my opinion it’s gotta’ get more science-fiction-y or superhero-y if it’s gonna survive. The fact that the Jamie character has cool powers is the big draw of the show but in the pilot that is all downplayed for angst and drama.

Here is what I liked in no particular order (spoilers):

The pilot was under one hour. I’m glad it wasn’t stretched out into some boring made for TV move style deal. Tell the story and get it done.

Sometimes Bionic Woman is dark and creepy in the style of grim and gritty superheroes and vampire movies. I liked the scene in the rain quite a bit. It reminded me of Blade Runner for some reason.

Our heroine has a supervillain-like enemy.

The struggle between military and civilian interests.

Jonas Bledsoe as the hard-ass director of the bionics program. Usually I hate these kinds of stock characters.

The writers kept things moving despite some lame dialog and exposition.

The fact that a regular person was uploaded with military combat programs reminded me of Deathlok. I like Deathlok.


Here is what I disliked in no particular order (spoilers):

I wanted Jamie’s accident to be a real accident.

The show needed to present more use of powers.

Bionic Woman is trying too hard to be cool with hip music and a dance club atmosphere.

The characters are all too interconnected. Sometimes things just happen.

There is a dark conspiracy going on that… blah, blah, blah…

Vancouver is getting really old as a stand-in for the US and Sci-Fi shows in general.

I did I mention some lame dialog and exposition (but nowhere near as bad Flash Gordon).

Jamie's recovery was too fast. She didn’t seem very surprised at her newfound powers.

She could have been a little more grateful that her boyfriend saved her life.

Future Opportunities:

There better be a bionic dog, Fembots, and a guest appearance by Lindsay Wagner coming down the pike.


Thursday, September 20, 2007

My New Comics

This week’s best cover is Criminal Macabre: My Demon Baby #1.

Shadow Pact #17, DC Comics.

Criminal Macabre: My Demon Baby #1, Dark Horse.

Green Arrow & Black Canary Wedding Special #1, DC Comics. Yeah, yeah, I picked it up… what the hell, why not.

Spider-Man/Red Sonja #2, Dynamite Entertainment/Marvel Comics.

Zerokiller #2, Dark Horse.

Jungle Girl #0, Dynamite Entertainment. Hmmm… aren’t you supposed to release a 25¢ teaser comic before issue one comes out?

Jungle Girl #1, Dynamite Entertainment.

Trade Paperback:
52 Vol #3, DC Comics. This has been good so far, too bad it all went to crap with Countdown and its related series.


Tuesday, September 18, 2007

I’m getting a little too excited at this point for Indy 4, but my enthusiasm helped me realize why comics have been so discouraging of late. There’s no sense of adventure in them, at least not for me. Back when I first read comics the stories seemed much more grounded in fantastic larger than life yarns. Whether they were good or bad, there was still a sense of wonder. That’s not to say I never wanted relatable heroes. I was a big fan of the X-men back in the day and Spidey’s suffering is part of what makes him a great character but now… it just seems too overloaded with heartbreak and catastrophe. What’s the next “tragic event” to hype so the big 2 can get their comics talked about in the fan press. Time and time again these things have been a letdown unless there was some sense of wonder and adventure. That’s why I signed up for The Phantom Comics by Moonstone. I should have done this a long time ago. It’s back to basics with the good guys fighting the bad guys. Adventure is really at the core of what I want despite any genre I may choose. It’s why I’m reading Conan and Red Sonja and it’s why I dropped most of my Marvel and DC stuff. There are a few other adventure comics coming down pike that I’m also looking forward to like Jungle Girl, Superpowers, Kull, Solomon Kane (possibly), and Airboy.

Oh and Dark Horse, now is a good time to collect all those Marvel Indiana Jones comics into trades just like you did with the old Star Wars stuff.

On a completely different topic, I purchased The Tick VS. Season Two and Popeye The Sailor 1933-1938 DVDs. When it comes to the Tick I forgot how awesome this show is. The scripting is brilliant. The stories work on two levels for both kids and adults. It’s often “laugh out loud” funny and the parodies of superhero-ness are spot on. The price is steep for only 12 of shows though (I got it with a reduced price promotion), and like the first season set it’s missing an episode, which is frustrating. The Popeye DVD collection is mind-blowingly good with 60 Fleischer cartoon shorts on 4 disks. In a similar manner to the Looney Tunes Gold Collections there’s lot of special features on each disk. Documentaries, commentaries, and early Fleischer shorts fill up each disk along with the amazingly well crafted Popeye cartoons. This set is for the serious collector, as it doesn’t censor the less savory elements like racism and violence and in fact each DVD has a disclaimer at the beginning. Despite that, the quality of these cartoons shines and they remind me why I always liked the black and white Popeye cartoons the best.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

That's So Random...

This video was posted in response to that Leave Brittney Alone Guy. It’s a fun bit of editing but fuck if I know how it’s related to Ryan Crocker’s video… but maybe that’s the point.

What's with the bear character anyway?


EDIT: The Bear character is called PedoBear... and he's into... well you get the idea... AHHHHH

Friday, September 14, 2007

Jericho Update

Haven’t made an update about Jericho in awhile, so I thought I’d post a few odds and ends. As you know, Jericho was saved after it was cancelled because fans sent in huge amounts of nuts to CBS.

First up is the “thank you” vid that was presented at Comic Con. There's great behind the scenes shots along with some footage from season 2 and the extremely happy cast and crew members. From wikipedia:
On August 2, 2007, a video was released on YouTube showing clips from the first day back at work for the Jericho cast and crew. It shows clips of the first season, explaining the cancellation, followed by brief clips from the second season premiere and a "thank you" from the cast and crew to the fans for their efforts to revive the show

The official Jericho website has all kinds of new content and this time the producers have free reign to post what they want. Check out their production blog here.

If you want to find out why the Jericho fans were so crazy about the show then drop 50 bucks and get Season One, which comes out on DVD October 2.

Now if they could just get a Jericho comic book going…


Thursday, September 13, 2007

My New Comics

This week’s best cover is Suicide Squad #1.

The Walking Dead #42, Image.

Suicide Squad #1, DC Comics. An impulse buy, hopefully the villains in this title won’t let me down.

Cthulhu Tales: Tainted #1, Boom Studios.

The Un-Men #2, DC Comics. It looks really freaking bizarre. I need more bizarre right now.

Lone Ranger #8, Dynamite Entertainment.

Groo: 25th Anniversary Special, #1, Dark Horse. I’ve developed a new respect for this comedy Sword & Sorcery series. I’ll have to get all the trades now.

Picked up some back issues:

The Un-Men #1, DC Comics. I saw the 2nd issue of Un-Men on the shelf and it looked really weird and since my shop still had #1, I decided to pick ‘em both up.

Whiteout Trade paperback vol #1, Oni Press. I figured I better get this to support the local guys and to read it before the movie comes out.


Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Milla Jovovich... Gentleman Who Fell

Before Resident Evil: Extinction comes out and the critics slam Milla for her acting ability,let’s all remind ourselves about her other skills in the realm of singing and songwriting. She might have had a musical career had her album, The Divine Comedy, been more commercially successful. It was a critical success though.

Back in 1994, I was alone in a dark room with a TV, in ah… shall well say an altered state of consciousness, when Milla’s video for the Gentleman Who Fell aired. I was completely sucked in and transported to god knows where (I could go on and on about the various aspects of film history referenced in the video). When I came back to planet earth, I remember thinking, “Wow, I wanna have her baby!” I ran out and bought her CD the very next day. I still have it.

I didn’t know about Milla Jovovich before that night, but I’ve always been thankful that this was my first impression of her.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

September 11th…

Now it’s a double tragedy. Thousands upon thousands of people are dead for no reason at all. Iraq had nothing to do with the attacks of September 11th and yet we “had” to invade that country for some bizarre reason known only to this fascist administration and the war profiteering Halliburton. The good will received by the United States from foreign countries was squandered and Americans were stabbed in the back with a presidential, imperial power grab that was all excused in the name of security, freedom, and patriotism when it really was the suppression of dissent and debate. But reality has finally trumped ideology. The miserable state of affairs in Iraq and the wasted lives of our soldiers, have proven that the Wal-Mart-itzation of war, and incompetence do not magically bring democracy to the world. Nor do they avenge the people we lost on September 11th. The toppling of the Taliban in Afghanistan was the opportunity to go after the ones who attacked us and the ones who gave the terrorists shelter but valuable resources and personnel were diverted to the neocon dream war of Iraq and the operation was unfinished. The killers including Bin Ladin got away and religious extremists are back to threaten the region.

Remember those killed on September 11th and remember how their horrific deaths were used by greedy power mongers to do terrible things at home and abroad.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Iron Man Trailer


Looks good. Lots of small stuff in there for the fanboys.

Oh and in case you missed it on every other site Indy 4 is called:

It's gonna be a fun film year in 2008... (I hope)!

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Random Stuff From Previews

I just thought I'd list a few things from September’s Previews that ticked me for some reason or another. Items to arrive in November.

Nurse Ogawa! Now your Star Trek: The Next Generation action figure set will be complete. Oh, and I guess they’re releasing an action figure for some character called Ensign Ro too. Page 444.

The Complete Terry and the Pirates Volume 2. This is one book series I really wish I could pick up but at 50 bucks a pop... I always wanted to read this classic strip due to the great art by Milton Caniff. Lots of strong Female characters, including the Dragon Lady. Page 314.

The Smurfs are coming to DVD! Season one is only $44.98. That’s 26 Smurftasitc episodes for chump change. Page 537.

Doctor Who’s Tardis, how cool is that? Pretty cool. If you’ve got the action figures you have to get the Tardis right? Page 488.

The Cthulhu Rainy-Day Activity Book. Mazes, drawing, coloring and Mad Libs (to name a few items) that will occupy your time and drive you totally crazy. Page 518.

It’s also worth noting that Chaosium is releasing their D100 RPG rulebook. Finally, a generic set of rules for any type of play using the Basic Roleplaying System. I’m looking foreword to this one. Page 518.


Friday, September 7, 2007

My New Comics

This week’s best cover is Eva: Daughter Of The Dragon #1.

Jonah Hex #23, DC Comics.

She-Hulk #21, Marvel Comics.

Star Trek: Year Four #2, IDW.

Star Trek Klingons: Blood Will Tell #5, IDW.

Eva: Daughter Of The Dragon #1, Dynamite Entertainment.

One The Shelf Back Issue:
Sharkman #2, Image. I bought the first one like a year ago? I don’t even remember what happened. Then I stumbled across the second issue, ah why not.


Thursday, September 6, 2007


Who Wants To Be A Superhero?… Finale!

Well I think next week I’m gonna pick the Defuser again to be eliminated… oh, er NO it’s over. The 2-hour finale of Who Wants To Be A Superhero? came to it’s dramatic conclusion with the Defuser taking the title of Stan Lee’s next great superhero. Needless to say I’m not surprised the Defuser won… AFTER I learned a lot more about him that wasn’t revealed before. This police detective is a total comic geek. He plays video games all the time, has his bathroom made up in a hulk theme and has thousands of comics in his garage. That’s right. The Defuser was a total ringer. Check out the superhero after show interview with Feeback here. It’s so obvious now. I had thoughts at the beginning that he might win, but I gotta hand it to the editors. They made it seem like he was always on thin ice. But it was fun anyway so who cares.
Stan managed a few surprises this time around. The biggest being that there was no elimination. Yes, the Defuser, Hyperstrike, and Hygena, were all allowed to continue to the finals. It kinda makes sense though, I really had this feeling that Hyperstrike and Hygena were gonna be in the final round, but The Defuser had really done a lot towards the end to win me over as well. Everybody really stepped up to the plate. Hygena, by offering herself as bait for the dogs, found a perfect way for her to offer a plan and participate despite the fact that she doesn’t have the physical prowess or strength of Hyperstrike or the Defuser. And the two guys? Well, they performed heroically while getting savagely bitten by the slobbering doggies, so they all came through the challenge with flying colors.
One of the funny things about the episode was the fact that they all equally screwed up during a visit to a TV studio and the interview with Kennedy by revealing lots of personal information about themselves. They all let their guards down but it didn’t cost the heroes in the end.

There were several touching moments as well:

When the superheroes all received action figures based on their characters, their inner geeks came racing to the surface. It was a nice light moment that helped reduce tension.

When they realized that no one was going to be eliminated and that all three would proceed to the finals, the look on their faces was priceless. Hypestrike said it best when he said there was a nomination not an elimination. Too be honest, I liked the fact that Stan didn’t eliminate anybody; it kept things interesting and spread the joy around.

Stan talked to the heroes individually, and the Defuser and Hygena’s stories really stood out. The Defuser broke down when he talked about his sister and his family needing a hero when he was young, and Hygena cried when talking about losing a her baby late term, but that show had helped her grow and she realized that she had the strength to try again. Hyperstike’s story wasn’t tragic but it did reveal how he took childhood teasing and turned it into a motivator to excel.

A really good choice was having the heroes meet their families before the final decision was made. Last season they brought them out after Stan’s decision and it was anti-climactic because we didn’t know who they were and what was going on. This time the loved ones helped build dramatic tension and provided nice cutaways, instead of shots of bored, confused nobodies in the audience.

There were a few things I didn’t like though:

The promotional trailers for each character were terrible. Why were they fighting medieval monsters, and dragons in the woods? Superheroes are a very urban, street fight kind of a thing. Ugh, They also recycled some footage from last year’s trailers. Hyperstrike’s had some redeeming quality using Toho Godzilla and Rodan footage. But in general they sucked hard. It was a nice reminder that this program is broadcast on the same station that the shows SCIFI Original Pictures.

Dr. Dark’s final confrontation with the heroes was a bit of a let down. They just blasted him after the stunt-training segment and left him there. There should have been some sort of bigger payoff and the superheroes should have handed him off to the authorities as part of their final victory. It was a lame end to a villain that helped make the show.

There was a missed opportunity as well with Dr. Dark. They should have allowed Dr. Dark to make some sort of funny final statement from Jail. It would have helped close the show.

I enjoyed this season for the most part although, it lost some of the freshness factor by being a second season. Stan and the gang will need to mix it up if they do a third season so it doesn’t get stale.

Stan's after show interview with Feedback here

Robby Reed Back From the Dead!

Robby Reed and the Dial B for Blog are back after a yearlong hiatus with new posts starting this month. Using expert design skills to help illustrate his informative posts, Robby enlightens with little known facts and observations about all ages of comic book history. Check out his amazing archives here, for past "issues." Hell, just check his homebrew covers. That’s worth the click alone.


Tuesday, September 4, 2007

From Russia With Girl Love

So I was looking for info on the remake of Brian De Palma’s Sisters from 1973. I didn’t find much of anything, but the search returned a link about new film from Russia titled “A Sisters Kiss.” Here’s the copy from the movie’s website:
The story takes place in Russia in the city of St. Petersburg. Two Russian schoolgirls suffer crash in natural love. Once they meet each other and fall in love. But once they found that they sisters...

They what, commit suicide after really long drawn out monologues? That would be the classic Russian thing to do.

“And it’s not porn!” Maybe you shouldn’t put that in your trailer…

Admit it, you wanna see it. I know I do, but for purely artistic reasons of course.


Monday, September 3, 2007

Happy Labor Day

Happy Labor Day! Remember, People died to give you an 8 hour workday and a 40 hour workweek. (in the States that is)


My Favorite Wonder Woman Story...?

Over at Comics Fairplay, Heidi put out the call for bloggers to rap about their favorite Wonder Woman story of all time (here)…. ah gulp… I haven’t really read much Wonder Woman outside of team books and event stuff. Oh, wait I know.

I remember one crossover where Wonder Woman visited the Marvel Universe. While there, she met She-Hulk and they decided to become a crime-fighting duo after defeating Dr. Doom through some spontaneous teamwork. Eventually, their relationship deepened and they fell madly in love with each other. Despite the trials and tribulations of being super-heroines they decided to become life partners and raise a family. After experiencing the joys of parenthood from adopting a Chinese baby boy, they realized that what they really wanted was to go through the birthing process ala artificial insemination. They procured a sample of Captain America’s semen, but they ran into some trouble in their relationship. It seems they both wanted to bring the baby to term. The two of them worked it out though when She-Hulk changed her mind. She realized that it was probably safer for Wonder Woman to have the child since She-Hulk physically transforms. The scene where Wonder Woman gives birth was really powerful. There she is on the bed pushing, with sweat pouring down her face while Shulkie is lovingly holding her hand in a strong grip. Finally, the baby comes and they both burst into tears of joy and give each other a big kiss while holding their new daughter. It was a great story. One I’ll never forget. An interesting aspect of the Women’s relationship was the fact that Jennifer Walters was not in love with Wonder Woman, like She-Hulk was. Although Jennifer considered Wonder Woman a close friend, she just couldn’t have that kind of relationship with her and that led to all kinds of interesting story dynamics, as there were essentially three people in the relationship.

Oh Wait… no! Sorry, that was a dream I had, never mind.

Hmmm let me see, I must have read something. There was some story about Chronos stealing all the clocks in the city so nobody could tell what time it was… nah that was just silly. Well, the only other two I can up with are Wonder Woman’s first appearance from All-Star comics # 8, and issue #1 of Volume 2 of the Pérez reboot from 1987.

Her origin story always struck me because in it Wonder Woman wore a mask and shot another Amazon in the arm plus I liked the classic drawing style.

When in comes to Volume 2 #1, I read that issue as a Millennium Edition reprint in 2000. It was at that point that I realized I had missed something special.

So, I guess I’m gonna pick those two stories as my favorites as that’s all I’ve read.

It’s not that I don’t like Wonder Woman; it’s just that I always threw my money to the Marvel super-heroines like She-Hulk.