Monday, December 24, 2007
Though it is awful, I'm amazed that Lucasfilm has yet to try and extract a buck by re-releasing this.
Update! Hey Sugar-Mama readers! Remember that Christmas gift I wanted? Well Check that, get this instead. Holy smokes is that awesome.
Sunday, December 23, 2007
"Yes, Red Son Superman?"
"I got you a Christmas present! Heat vision!"
Images courtesy of Countdown: Arena #3, in which, some young, upstart, Elseworlds Superman literally grabs two other Supermen's heat vision and uses it to bonk their heads together. Yeah, I still don't know what I think of it either.
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Darlene Love - Christmas (Baby, Please Come Home)
Aimee Mann - You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch
Have a good one, and hopefully I'll get something up on Christmas Eve, since I have the day to myself. That's probably a lie, since I'll probably spend the day watching an entire season of the X-Files and listening for the sounds of hooves on my roof.
Edit: Incidentally, should I have any rich, sugar-mama-ish readers out there who want to get me (or rather my inner-12-year-old) that perfect Christmas gift, here you go (thanks to Kevin for the find).
Saturday, December 15, 2007
The Lost Lanterns back up Hal Jordan
Hal chin-checks Sinestro with a 2x4!
Leezle Pon! Super-intelligent Smallpox Virus Green Lantern!
What's that Nova #9, you've got one too?
Heh, rocket style indeed.
Hope everyone is having a good weekend!
Friday, December 14, 2007
Anyway, went to see The Golden Compass" this evening and was entertained, but ultimately, underwhelmed. It had the same problems that the first Harry Potter film had, it rushes from plot point to plot point without giving the story any breathing room to draw us in. The best thing about the book was the world that Pullman built in it. He didn't explain that this was an alternate Earth, or what daemons were or any of the things that the movie explains in the opening narration. The reader was allowed to discover these things for themselves and the world of the book was very well realized. A few other thoughts, since I can't be arsed to write a full, well reasoned review:
- Daniel Craig is dreamy. I mean, I'm straight as the day is long, but I can gaze into those baby blues of his for days. They better get on the stick with that next Bond flick.
- I think the Nicole Kidman-bot only has two emotion switches: "Wounded" and "Sinister". She was in full "Sinister" mode in the movie and her performance was very good for an android.
- When reading the book I was expecting the world to look much more sooty and "steam-punky", but it was very clean and sci-fi. Kinda threw me off.
- I don't think that Christopher Lee actually filmed his scene for this movie. I think the just re-purposed some of his footage from one of the Star Wars prequels. I mean, the only reason his scene was there was so people would say, "Hey look, Christopher Lee!"
- People were bitching about the ending as soon as it was over. Firstly, to the jackass who said, "Well that ending sucked!" No, you suck jackass, because you were kicking my seat throughout the entire movie. One more time and I would've broken your foot. Anyway, the ending was kind of anticlimactic IF you've read the book. If not, it seems perfectly sensible, especially if you expect them to make the next one (which, after the first weekend's gross, doesn't seem very likely).
- My take on the whole Catholic League brou-ha-ha: If you think your kid can be turned into an atheist by watching one movie and reading a few books, well, then perhaps you as a parent and your local priest aren't exactly doing your jobs. I mean, it's not like there's anything else, in fiction or reality painting the Catholic Church as some type of sinister organization.
- It certainly looked very nice and the production values were very high. Just figured I'd mention it since someone obviously worked very hard on it.
Anyhoo, it's certainly not bad, and it goes by very quick, but I'd recommend you to just skip it and read the book.
Saturday, December 08, 2007
Anyway, last year I passed on DC's Infinite Holiday Special due to some so-so reviews. But now that I realize that I missed this, I've gotta track it down. I love holiday specials. Update! Many thanks to Chris @ the ISB for pointing out that he covered my personal favorite Christmas comic a few years back. Go here to read about it (this post also includes the most articulate description of why I love Starman so much.)
Speaking of fun holiday-themed comics, this really cracked me up:
Hope everyone's holiday preparations are going well! Gotta go vacuum up more pine needles!
Thursday, December 06, 2007
This series is definitely living up to its predecessor and it's going to places that I didn't anticipate. That's good, very good. Plus, we get more Starlord action. Not too much else to say.
What a mess. Anyway, the plot of this book is that the Monarch (formerly Captain Atom) is preparing to fight some type of battle to save the universe, but he needs the best that the multiverse has to offer, so he plucks various iterations of our favorite heroes off of various Earths and decides to weed through them, death-match style. In the first issue we get the fights between the Batmen and Nightshades and neither really delivers.
Scott McDaniel's art is a little too cartoony for the high action that he is supposed to be delivering, but he does subtly ape both Mike Mignola's and Frank Miller's art while drawing their versions of Batman & Superman. I am tempted to pick up the next issue, but it'll have to pass the flip test in order to sucker me in next month.
Onto Marvel's little event they got going on in the X-Titles. While I was intrigued by the last issue of X-Factor, not enough to buy into the whole crossover, but they may have drawn me in with this. Pretty much, this is a full issue fight scene featuring the various X-Teams, all in pretty crap shape, going up against some new-school sentinels. It really reminds me of the X-Men I fell in love with back in the late 80's/early 90's and I really like what I see. I guess they've sucked me in.
Math time! Batman + Elongated Man + Detective Chimp / Gorilla Grodd = Fan-freaking-tastic
Ahhhh, there I'm in a better mood. Let's turn on the Bears game and relax...aw shit, it's on NFL Network, I gotta deal with fucking Bryant Gumble? Wait, is Griese the QB, what the fuck? Dammit, can nothing go right?
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Went to see Beowulf in 3-D last week, a few brief thoughts:
- John Malkovich proves that you can act badly in CG animation, there had better be a deleted scene on the DVD of him getting handed his check.
- While some characters look amazing (Beowulf for one), some are plainly rush jobs and fall deeply into the uncanny valley.
- If you want to see it, I'd recommend 3-D, as it's pretty cool and a lot of the shots are plainly made to "be cool in 3-D".
- Those 3-D glasses kinda suck if you have to wear them over glasses.
- The first thirty minutes of the movie could easily be repurposed as an opening to a porn film. Everybody in the beginning just wants to have sex.
- I never, ever need to see a drunk, half-naked, computer-generated Anthony Hopkins ever again. Hell, I never needed to see that in the first place.
Also, in a musical vein, go check out this guy's blog, he recently gave me a fantastic mix and it's been playing almost non-stop on my work computer. Send vol. 2 my way when you get a chance DB.
Finally got the first season of Flight of the Conchords from Netflix. I was on the fence during the first episode, but once the below little number hit, I was enamored:
Obviously, the show is deeply odd, but it's a charming odd, not a pretentious odd. Much like New Zealand (ie. the Canada of the southern hemisphere).
Here's what I got comics-wise last week:
Captain America #33 - Excellent as usual, but I think I might be switching to trade on this book. The last four or five issues have essentially been one, long chase sequence and I think it would read better all at once rather than with the monthly breaks (I am not one of those people that can buy books and let them sit, unread until an arc completes).
Brave & the Bold #8 - Another excellent title that really doesn't leave much more to say. It's amazing that the quality of George Perez's art continues to grow every year. Check out that cover (below), awesome. Easily the most fun book on the stands every month (with the occasional skip month).
Ex Machina #32 - I can't believe that I keep forgetting to drop this book. Don't get me wrong, there's really nothing wrong with it, but since it started veering away from political stuff into a more "standard" superhero story, I've kind of lost interest. The book started very strongly but I just don't get the feeling that it's going anywhere. It's odd, both the writer (Brian K. Vaughn) and the artist (Tony Harris) are two all-time faves, but it just isn't clicking with me. I almost feel that it would be better as a prose work.
The Spirit #11 - Darwyn Cooke wraps up his longest story line in this book in his penultimate issue and it's good, but I really didn't want the Spirit to tangle with zombies. I prefer the more down and dirty crime issues and this it just a little too over-the-top. That said, it's still beautiful to look at and I imagine I'll look at it with much more fondness once Mr. Cooke's been off the title for a while. That said, it has a very cool Dia De Los Muertos cover (above). Will have to remember to re-purpose that around holiday time next year.
Other than that, just been trying to finish up the last of the Christmas shopping, hopefully that'll be done in the next few days. I'm picking up my comics tonight, so maybe I'll have some thoughts on this week's books up tomorrow.
Have a good one.
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Friday, November 23, 2007
Give thanks to Bahlactus for getting us in the ring!
All images are from Fantastic Four/Iron Man: Big in Japan. Also featured in these pages...Droom makes a sandwich for Iron Man.
Thursday, November 22, 2007
Now let's get one thing straight, I have no problem with the white tux, I mean, Sean Connery rocked a mean one in Dr. No, but this is just 80's fashion at it's worst. The black collar? Bad. The tux with no tie? Worse. The mullet? Aaaiiieeee...my eyes!
Next we have this loverly little ensem:
Whoa there tiger, no use getting so riled up right before your safari. Further investigation (in issue #237) proves this outfit to be some type of khaki, belted, vested, jumpsuit. In real life this outfit would get you laughed at. By me.
Anyhoo, to show that Tony didn't completely lose his mojo after becoming a friend of Bill W., here's some pimp action Stark Enterprises stylie:
That's right baby, you're on your way to the Great White North, and if you don't put out, well, let's just say that 18 hours on a Greyhound bus can't be that bad.
However, to be fair, my delvings into my own consumer past also unearthed this fine bit of fashion, courtesy of Power Man & Iron Fist #121:
And that dude's omniscient!
Hope every one had a great Thanksgiving, and remember, even if you feel fat today after all that turkey and pie and you can only fit into sweatpants, at least you're not in a pink leather disco suit.
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
This news (via Newsarama) made me as giddy as a school-boy:
STARMAN, the acclaimed DC Universe series created by writer James Robinson and artist Tony Harris, will be collected for the first time in hardcover, on
high-quality paper, in THE STARMAN OMNIBUS, a series of six volumes beginning in May.
This series will feature new covers by Harris, and will measure 6.75” x
10.25”. Collecting the entire STARMAN series, plus the STARMAN ANNUALS, SECRET FILES, 80-PAGE GIANT, THE SHADE miniseries and much more, these volumes include stories illustrated by Harris, Peter Snejbjerg, Chris Sprouse, J.H. Williams III, Phil Jimenez, Gene Ha, Guy Davis, Teddy Kristiansen, Lee Weeks and many others, as well as several stories co-written by David Goyer.
Scheduled to reach stores in May, THE STARMAN OMNIBUS VOL. 1 HC is a 448 page title collecting STARMAN #0 and 1-16, with a cover price of $49.99 U.S.
Starman is absolutely one of my top five, actually top three ever and to know I'll be able to have it all on my book shelf in hard cover is awesome. Especially since it'll collect the last few issues that they haven't gotten around to.
Since I can't grab my comics today, no reviews till Sunday. Have a great Turkey Day and always remember the true meaning of Thanksgiving (per Warren Ellis):
Give your neighbours an infected blanket this Thursday and then move into
their houses after they're dead.
Saturday, November 17, 2007
I got a new computer and a scanner!
This may catapult me from a shitty blogger to being a crappy blogger. I'm giddy with anticipation.
Pictured: West Coast Avengers #1. A book that somehow, despite being not very well written or dawn helped draw a little me into a life-long addiction to comics. I mean, it'd be a hell of a lot more explainable if ROM had joined the WCA...just imagine the possibilities.
Friday, November 16, 2007
Listen, I lived a block away from Wrigley Field during the home-run chase of '98, it's one of the things (along with the Cub's wild-card run) that helped turn me from a Cubs fan to a CUBS FAN. I was 24 and I was all but certain that the chase was fueled by steroids, but, I didn't care much, simply because neither baseball, journalists or the government cared enough to do the simple investigations into illegal drug trafficking to clean up the sport before it became an issue that not even my dog could ignore. And she ignores her own poo when she goes in the house. Whenever I hear all of these sportswriters delighting/complaining about Bonds, I keep wondering, what kind of stories were you writing in 98(I'm looking at you Mariotti)? It was obvious to anyone with eyes there was something fishy going on.
Anyway, here's what I bought this week:
World War Hulk #5
Well, at the end of the day, that was kind of disappointing. I mean it certainly delivered a great fight between the Sentry and the Hulk (and also gave us a good glimpse into exactly how much of a head-case the Sentry is), but c'mon, they may as well have just hung a "to be continued..." on the whole thing. I understand that event comics are meant to be jumping off points for new series and storylines, but really, can't you just give us some type of closure? Shit, has House of M even ended yet?
Fortunately, John Romita Jr.'s art makes the whole thing worth the price of admission, but I still feel like I just ate a really good steak that was slightly over-done.
So yeah, this book has apparently found what its over-arching storyarc is to be and it's Star Trek: Voyager. That is not to say that the comic isn't excellent. We have an entire issue of exposition of Nova's new situation, but since said exposition is delivered by a Soviet, talking, astronaut dog (named Cosmo!), it is awesome.
My only fear is that since this story mirrors said crappy ST series (and Abnett & Lanning's previously awesome series: Legion Lost) that they may go on auto-pilot. But irregardless, I'm in.
So this is smack dab in the middle of the Messiah Complex cross-over and instead of something like David's well-written Civil War and (kinda) House of M stories that only tangentially touched the whole things, this issue continues on directly from the last X-issue that came out last week and leads into whatever issue comes out next week. That said, it's not totally incomprehensible, but you only really get about 10 pages of story actually including any of the stars of the book, the rest is Cyclops bitching out whatever members of the New X-Men that are still alive this week.
Anyway, I'm intrigued enough by the thing that I'll probably pick up the trade, but I hope that we'll get back to some stand-alone X-Factory goodness next month.
All-Star Superman #9
So yeah, not much to say. A-hole Kryptonians show up on Earth, try to take over and Superman ends up proving that he's better because he's not a complete dick (depending upon who you talk to).
There's not much more I can say about this series except that it's very good, however this issue was a little disappointing, simply because the resolution came a little too quick, I honestly thought I had missed a page or two somewhere.
I know, I know, why am I the only person who's not talking about LOEG: The Black Dossier? Well, I didn't get it (yet), and even if I did, there's no way I'd be through it by now. Truth be told, I've never been completely hit-over-the-head in love with LOEG, I've liked it and thought it was a great idea with good execution, but I've never thought it measured up to Moore's best work of archetypal deconstruction (Watchmen, Tom Strong). Hopefully I'll have something to say about it in a week or so.
But now to the best book I've read this year:
Scott Pilgrim Vol. 4: Scott Pilgrim Gets it Together
If you haven't read the first three volumes of this series of GN's and you enjoy fun, video games, Canada, indie rock, (half)ninjas, laziness or fun, you are doing yourself a disservice by not going out and buying them all and spending your weekend catching up. Seriously, buy copies for yourself and anyone you know over the age of 12, it's like crack, but it won't fuck up your teeth.
This book is pretty much impossible to review, just say that over four volumes and hundreds of pages, Bryan Lee O'Malley has managed to write and draw one of my top five favorite series ever with no drop in quality. Now I'm just pissed I gotta wait a year (at least) for vol. 5.
Anyhoo, thanks for coming, I'm going to an art gallery and (perhaps) a movie tonight, so maybe tomorrow I'll came back to drop some knowledge bombs on y'all.
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
Tuesday, November 06, 2007
Anyhoo, since I last posted in the long, long ago time of October not much has happened except for the damaging my back due to lifting a 30 year old console TV. Saw a few shows (New Pornos & Stars - both very good) and went to the Blade Runner re-release last night at the Music Box. I really can't offer a review of this film since pretty much everyones mind is made up as to it, but if you like the flick, I really recommend going to see it in the theatre. The clarity of it is just amazing. It looks like it was shot this year, everything looks incredibly clear. I really didn't detect much difference from the previous Director's Cut, there was the re-shot scene of Zhora's death (detailed here), but I only really looked at that closely, since I knew it was re-done. It was blended seamlessly. The effects are all the same, they were just cleaned up. They did correct the "sixth replicant" continuity error though, I guess the internets can close all of the conspiracy theory files on that one.
They did include the "unicorn dream-sequence" along with Dekkard finding the origami-unicorn that Adama apparently left for him at the end, meaning that , most likely, Dekkard is a replicant. While at first glance, this seems like an interesting idea (humans sending out another replicant to do the loathsome task of hunting down other replicants), I wonder if it would be more interesting if he was a human? I mean, it's obvious in the movie that he has emotional problems due to his job, wouldn't it be more interesting to investigate the emotions of a human having problems with hunting down "machines" rather than those of a replicant? They already detail that replicants are showing signs of emotional problems, despite their implanted memories. Oh well, it's all academic. I'm very excited for the DVD to come out, I haven't seen the film with the voice-over since the 80's and I remember initially preferring that over the Director's Cut. I can easily see myself blowing a weekend watching different versions of this movie. Of course I'm also hunting for the box that contains my copy of Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? so I can tear into that again.
Well, that's what I got for right now, eventually, I'll get my ass down to the shop and pick up the pile o' geekiness that awaits me and transcribe my thoughts on whether Rocket Racoon makes it through Annihilation: Conquest alive. Hope all is well with you, internet friends.
Monday, October 15, 2007
Friday, September 28, 2007
Holy sweet baby Jesus,...the End-Times are surely upon us.
Save us Ron Santo...Save Us!!!
Drink a fan can to celebrate
Seriously though, my Grandfather had emergency surgery last night and they're giving a 50-50 chance to live to get out of the hospital. Hopefully he'll be able to live long enough to see a better Cubs post-season experience than the fucking Bartman game (which he was at).
Oh, and for shits and giggles, let's hear some Lee Elia (language warning, kids):
Incidentally, apparently, this is my 100th post. Neat how that worked out.
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Friday, September 21, 2007
Here's Husker Du on the Late Show with Joan Rivers. Damn, are they awesome.
Looking for someone trustworthy to invest with? Howsabout Ric Flair? I wonder how hitting people with folding chairs fits into his plans?
So, a Justice League movie? Just looks like a bad idea to me. Here's hoping...
Quick run-down of recent concerts:
- Editors @ Park West: Man, they rock. I've seen them twice and they've brought it bouth times. Highly recommended. As a side note, Park West is the worst place in Chicago for a rock show, worse than the Mutiny even. I mean, it'd be great if I was going to sit down and listen to soothing folk or something, but for rock? Place sucks ass.
- Hideout Block Party (Saturday): Went for the Art Brut and loved them. They were preceeded by a punk rock marching band, which was odd. The Brut was followed by The Frames, who could be good, but they were too wuss-rock to follow a brit-rock-art-punk band, no way they could measure up. That said, they did close with an excellent cover of "Where is my Mind?" by the Pixies using the Hideout's resident glee club (ask me later) for the "woo-oooo's", but it wasn't enough in the end. Stuck around for one song by Andrew Bird, needed food far too badly at that point.
Since I've been rather lax on the whole "reviewing" thing lately, here are a couple books worthy of monthly purchase (rather than waiting for trade):
- Batman - Grant Morrison's take on Batman is surprisingly traditional and fun. The ole' Morrison insanity is there, but Bats is pushing through it. I think this run may end up overshadowing his X-Men stuff, if he can keep it up for a little while longer.
- Iron Fist - Brubaker & Fraction are adding a lot of layers to this formerly-cult character. With a little other-media exposure, Iron Fist could make the jump to the big-leagues.
- Casanova - More Fraction, even more craziness. Feels like a comic Brian Jones would have written right after he took drugs and right before he got in the pool.
- Captain America - Over 30 issues in, not even the title character's death can lessen how much new life Ed Brubaker has breathed into this series.
- Brave & The Bold - Pretty much the only comic coming out today that could be published at any time in the last 50 years and still be considered as good as it is. It is the very definition of "old-school". Well written, beautifully drawn, and fun.
- Honorable mentions - The Spirit (only 3 more Cooke issues left) and All-Star Superman (only considered monthly in other dimensions).
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
Well, anyway, instead of posting some maudlin break-up tune, here's a (kinda) happy, witty one:
Art Brut - People in Love
Thursday, September 13, 2007
Friday, August 31, 2007
POW! SOCK! BAM! CLOUT!
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
Friday, August 24, 2007
Images from Superman #666, these panels occur after Superman demolishes a convenience store and before he kills Braniac using "super-friction".
Thursday, August 23, 2007
Morrison continues on his "Batmen of Many Nations" arc and ups the stakes for our collection of heroes. It's an interesting little murder-mystery that really brings Bats back to his roots. I only have read a few of Morrison's Batman issues, but what I really like is how he's humanized (dare I say...softened) Batman. When Robin starts making fun of some of the past-their-sell-by-date heroes they're trapped with, Bats sticks up to defend them. Plus, his continued confidence in Robin's abilities is very cool. It's nice to see him acknowledge not every hero can measure up to him. This is the middle-part, so it suffers a bit from that, but it's still a very good issue.
One thing about the art, I had noticed while re-reading the previous issue, it looks as if J.H. Williams III is drawing each hero in a different artist's style. The Knight & Squire look as if Ed McGuinness is drawing them, the Argentine hero is in Carlos Ezquerra's style, the American Indian heroes look like Kevin Nowlan did them and The Legionairre looks like some of Carmine Infantino's Silver Age work. It looks really cool.
Holy crap that was awesome. I was disappointed with Batman #666, but this issue of Superman more than makes up for it. Essentially the plot is that Superman, thinking he's dreaming, decides to live out every single awful impulse he has ever had...from killing Luthor (by spitting in, and through, his face!) to making Jimmy Olsen's head explode using his super-whistling, and hey, no biggie, it's all a dream.....(wait for it)....OR IS IT!
Kurt Busiek writes an insane script that essentially exists solely to give Walt Simonson insane things to draw in the way that only Mr. Simonson can. I think this is the best single-issue tale I've read all year.
Annihilation Conquest: Starlord # 2
So our heroes go into battle (including everyone's favorite Racoon riding a sentient tree) and things get messy. That's pretty much it, this issue was good, but not to the heights of the first issue. It could be that the artist is better at drawing people talking rather than shooting, but it's still good. Part of the problem may have been for as much action that happened in this issue, there wasn't a lot of story, it's like the script read "Our Heroes bicker as the fight their way through the sewers and X & Y characters die." It's not that simple, but not too far off.
Irregardless, I'm still excited to see where this is going and I'm confident that it won't let me down.
The Spirit #9
Darwyn Cooke gets back into fighting form with this issue. Focusing back onto out main villain, who was created during The Spirit's origin, this issue mirrors the tale told in issue #3 with multiple member's of the cast telling the story in narration as we move through. It's well done and what could have been incoherent is easy to follow.
Immortal Iron Fist #8
Here's the pitch: Iron Fist...starring in..."Enter the Dragon", with superpowered kung-fu deities.