Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Touch The Monkey



Rapper cliches:

We did it Brooklyn!

"Seven Hells!" is proud to announce that the store at which I manage has a website.

BIGMONKEYCOMICS.COM

Having everything a comics afficianado could want, it offers the following:

RSS feeds from comic book newsites.

"The Big Blog" to which I, Scip and others contribute.

Comic book reviews by myself and some of our amazing friends

Store info and sales (A pimp's gotta pimp, y'know!)

"New Arrivals" Updates (Comics, trades, toys, etc.)

Ta-da! The Astounding Stupid Quote Balloon!

Big Monkey Comics Radio (formerly SuperHero Radio)

Links to Big Monkey's Ebay store and on-line Monkey Merchandise store

My "Pick of the Week" and Recommend Readings

Two fan forums (FanFatale for women readers and Comic Book Issues for general topics)

Wow! Was that the ground beneath you shaking? It was. Bigmonkeycomics.com has landed!

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Character Donation #113


I do not do this thing easily but DC refuses to get off the pot, so to speak...

Nubia has to go. It's for her own good as no one in DC Comics knows what to do with her anymore. Created in the 70's, Nubia was, I'll say it because I
can, a bit of an affirmative action baby and DC retconning gone wild. While sculpting the clay that would go onto become Wonder Woman, Queen Hippolyta also found the time to sculpt another baby from brown clay...

*snicker*

So, then, like Mars comes in and snatches the Black one and Wonder Woman was short like, one sister.

No pun intended.

Well, since that story was published not much has been done with her pre or post-Crisis and that's kind of a shame. Get past all of the crazy Seventies pontification and you could have had another strong enduring female character the likes of Vixen or Power Girl.

Hell, you'd have thought Nubia would have been more of a lock for the title of Wonder Woman than this feeb but in typical Nineties DC fashion, they went and created something synthetic instead of using something cut from cloth.

Look, I think Nubia still has a ton of potential but dammit...

at Marvel she'd have a better chance of making it. At Marvel, she'd be running The Avengers in something like two weeks. Storm would finally have a girlfriend to go shopping with. It must be lonely being Marvel's only Black female. Luke Cage and Black Panther would just have to date her because every Black character at Marvel has knows one another.

That's just the way it is over there.

Nubia, I'll miss you but DC won't even know you're missing.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

"Seven Hells'! Soldiers" Re-Cap


Here they are and here they were:

7. Wildcat
6. Power Girl
5. Nightwing
4. Hawkman
3. Superman
2. Batman
1. Wonder Woman

Someone said I should, like, draw them together or sumthin'...

I ain't no drawer like that. Why these seven? Amy said it best:

"I realize my favorite DC characters are the sort of fellas (and ladies) I wouldn't mind buying a beer."

Good enough.

Happy Thanksgiving!


May you find yourselves with a plump breast or meaty thigh in your mouth.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Number One Of "Seven Hells'! Soldiers"


Wonder Woman
Originally uploaded by Devon Sanders.
It's pretty simple really. She was my first crush. Let me amend that. Lynda Carter was my first crush. She set me straight in more ways than one. Nearly 25 years later, it finally hit me. I am a comics fan beacuse of Wonder Woman. I love women because of Wonder Woman.

Let me amend that.

Wonder Woman has always been full of contradictions. All at once relating an idyll, yet one that refused to be put on some kind of pedestal. I've learned through trial and many an error that all women are Wonder Woman.

I simply love this character and the above picture from Countdown To Infinite Crisis crystallized the feeling even more. Superman literally looked down on The Blue Beetle as he relayed his suspicions. The Martian Manhunter dismissed him. When everyone thought him beneath notice, she stopped and showed him something no other character could...

Respect. Kindness. Consideration.

She validated him.

That's all he needed and he got it, from Wonder Woman. As long as she's around, The DC Universe will stay a bit more, I guess, humane.

I like that.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Character Donation #112


I'll freely admit I didn't know what it was. When they announced in one of DC Heroclix's, the addition of The Human Defense Corps, I just kinda shrugged and thought, "Well, I never use 'em."

I still don't know what they are. I still don't care. Judging from the name they shoot the monsters and villains superheroes are too busy to deal with.

They're no Checkmate. Cameron Chase and The D.E.O. point and giggle at these poor bastards.

Something like The Human Defense Corps would work elsewhere, like say...?

Marvel.

They call it S.H.I.E.L.D. over there. Send them to Marvel where they can fight it out with these guys.

Supremacy of sucking must be established.

If they go to Marvel some HeroClixer may actually use them. Self-respecting DC HeroClixers never will.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Way Out Western Tales

Jonah Hex, bounty hunter, gigolo or pimp?

You decide!!!!

Friday, November 18, 2005

Waaay Out Of Your League


Lot of news in this Newsarama article but the thing that struck me the most was this:

Plastic Man [is ending] with #20, Flash with #230, Superman #226 is the last issue for that numbering, Wonder Woman #226 is the last issue of that run, Gotham Knights #74, Gotham Central #40, JLA #125, and Batgirl #73.

JLA is ending with its' 125th issue. Any takers on it becoming more like the animated Justice League Unlimited series upon its' return?

Thursday, November 17, 2005

This Is Gonna Leave A Mark. (Updated)



This cover of Infinite Crisis #5 is, no pun intended, one of the most striking I've ever seen.

It works on so many levels. Level One, symbolism. It's just overflowing with it, explaining for the uninitiated, the significance of Infinite Crisis #1. As a kid, I remember sitting in art classes, drawing characters who, when they fought, knocked over many a building while doing so. I should also mention that all I ever read were Marvel Comics. It wasn't until I became a devout DC Comics convert with The Crisis On Infinite Earths that I realized that when DC characters fought, worlds shatter.

The Superman at the end of Infinite Crisis #1 is pre-Crisis Superman. The Superman of cartoons and thousands of comics who changes the course of mighty rivers with his bare hands. I call this one "Earthmoving Superman." This is the guy who'd when Earth was threaten, he'd simply ignore physics and move The Earth to a safer place so he could fight the aliens in peace. One punch from this guy and Richter scales became irrelevant. The Green Lantern Corps breaks out "Superman Protocols."

On this cover, post-Crisis Superman is taking on a man who's realized he hasn't lived up to his potential. This Superman was a has-been before he ever was. For nearly twenty years, he's been plagued by the demons of self-doubt. As we can see, truth hurts. The denizens of The DC Universe will hurt, as well. The Superman we've been living with for twenty years isn't the man for the job of saving a world. He is not a leader. This man lets Batman dictate how The Justice League should be run. Pre-Crisis Superman would never have allowed for that.

This cover tells a story. I want to know what's behind it, its' symbolism. Will our Superman see a return to greatness? Will he rise to the call for action.

Let's hope so. From this cover image, we can tell there's a lot at stake.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Adam Beechen Hates Me.


Taken from February's DC solicitations:

JUSTICE LEAGUE UNLIMITED #18
Written by Adam Beechen
Art and cover by Ethen Beavers

In the deep reaches of outer space, Superman lies injured
and powerless on a remote planet under a red sun. And the
only one who can save the Man of Steel is…Space Cabby?


Oh, now....!

What th...

Adam Beechen hates me! First, Vibe and now...

Space Cabby?

Adam Beechen is on my "Enemies List."

He is an Absorbascon sympathizer.

Adam Beechen hates me.

Crisis Counseling


Let me tell you whippersnappers a story.

When I was a kid, we had to trek seven miles in the snow to get our comic books from the drug store.

Yes! The drugstore!

Not some cutsie little comics boutique like the one I break my neck to run but a drugstore, dammit. That's right. In order to buy comics, I had to fight off syphilitic disco dancers and tuberculosis tykes to get that elusive issue of Millenium #1 or any of the connecting DC Universe crossovers.

Back in those halcyon days, a boy wanted every single crappy thing associated with a crossover. As bad as they were, I wanted every issue so that I could feel connected to every corner of The DC Universe. If Lana Lang was gonna be a Manhunter, dammit, I wanted to be the first on the block to know that Millenium was crap!

Nowadays...

I don't see this type of behavior much. Don't get me wrong, with Infinite Crisis having arrived, people still do come and buy many of its' crossover issues. All Of "Infinite Crisis" JLA issues have had repeated sell-outs at my store but the others...

not so much.

Gotham Central's doing OK. Superman, as well but titles like Outsiders and Firestorm aren't exactly setting the town on fire. Why is this? Is it because after nearly two years of living with Identity Crisis, Counntdown To Infinite Crisis, The OMAC Project, The Rann/Thanagar War, Day Of Vengeance and Villains United, we just may be a bit burned out. Are we holding back because of the way the internet has changed our reading habits. I mean, we don't have to actually buy the comics to know what's going on anymore, do we? The fellas on the internet will tell you every word of what they've just read. Are we "waiting for the trade" in a post-Millenium landscape?

I don't know anymore. What do you think?

R.I.P. Eddie Guerrero


*sigh*

My heart's a bit broken today. I just read of the death of easily my favorite wrestler, Eddie Guerrero, a few minutes ago. I don't follow wrestling like I used to but man, when I did, it was to see Eddie.

Why? Every performance, every show, the man was there to entertain and he did, every single time. "Win" or "lose," you could never say that Eddie didn't deliver. To see this man overcome the obstacles of drug and alcohol abuse, the stigma of being labeled "too small" to compete in a "sport" dominated by big men (He was 5'8") and rise to the top, was a rare privilege to see. To see Eddie operate at the top of his game was a privilege. A privilege I will sorely miss. I'll miss the man even more.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

The Memetic Force Of A Hammer


Everyone loves Adam Hughes. You will not believe the extents people will go to get a sketch from this man. I have seen one of my customers lined up at a convention six hours or more before a convention opens to get a sketch from him. Internet groups swoon at the announcement of a con appearance, plans formulate months in advance in hopes of securing the coveted Hughes sketch. Once procured, they instantly are posted with tales to rival The Odyssey. Once one's posted, they're everywhere. A Hughes sketch has become the comics art collector's version of a meme.

Hughes' beautiful images graced the covers of Wonder Woman for, correct me if I'm wrong, six years. Often, the stories inside stank on ice while I kept buying. Why?

Strictly for the covers.

...and DC hasn't quite realized this. Why there's no collected version of this man's DC Comics covers is totally beyond me. From Justice League International to Legionnaires to Wonder Woman to Rose & Thorn to his current work on Catwoman, his work has always been exceptional. Exceptional to the point where I would gladly plop down whatever amount of money DC Comics needed in order to presnt his work his work on glossy paper with running commentary from Hughes on each cover's composition.

I'm not asking for much. Just what I want.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Number Two Of "Seven Hells'! Soldiers"


Growing up, I never knew how to reconcile it. On the TV show, he was decoding clues found in alphabet soup. In the cartoons, he startled easily, shouting "Great Gotham!" at anything that moved. I remember having trouble with this guy. He smiled... alot. In the comics, he didn't smile much. He was all business. If he came across a clue, he went about the work of solving it. Clues would be carefully stored in a vial from his belt to be later analyzed. I liked this guy the most but...

that guy on the TV show was kinda funny with his shark repellent and excitable little boy.

The guy on the cartoon was O.K. by me, as well. He always seemed to have the answers. He was smart like a scientist or something.

I liked them all and the older I became, I realized they were all, in a unique way, right. The minute you found him in the comics, you found him. That true man. The one who lost so much and gave himself over to justice. The idea that some writer could take from that horror, the idea of making this character leap across a typewriter or do The Batusi is utterly fascinating.

Batman is the Swiss Army Knife of comic books. Put him next to Guy Gardner and he becomes a straight man. Put him in a room with a dead body, he becomes The World's Greatest Detective. Yes, Batman is MacGuyver, Abbott and Sherlock Holmes, all-in-one. I love him for that.

At the end of the day, what I like most is his compassion. That, he would forego everything at night to bring a better day is to me, what he's all about. The days are simply better with The Batman in them.

Plus, I hear he's a good dancer.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Thor's Comic Column


I'm back and buzzin', cousin, reviewing for CHUD: Thor's Comic Column. What sort of comic could pull me out of semi-retirement?

Why that comic would be Jonah Hex #1. Wanna read the first paragraph? Well, her it is:

In the future, a rocket containing a child will crash-land in Kansas, changing everything. In the future, a child will weep softly, kneeling in a pool of his parents’ blood. In the future, a woman will whisper a plea and receive the greatest of the gods’ gifts. A man of science will become one with the lightning.

Wanna read the rest? Well, you've gotta go here.

Tell 'em Devon sent ya.

Monday, November 07, 2005

(Re) Cap


Assist me to the couch. I think I may faint! This Newsarama article contains many and varied things but the thing that caused my vapors was this:

"As mentioned by Geoff Johns in his Newsarama Q&A, Captain Carrot is also slated to appear in Titans."

Some buy me a couch so I can faint on it, dammit!

How's this going to happen? Will Krypto get into Starfire's Tamaranian peyote garden, conjuring up The Zoo Crew whilest feasting upon the entrails of a green cat?

Consider me very intrigued.

Have You Seen Me?


Dr. Jenet Klyburn
Originally uploaded by Devon Sanders.
Hello, my name is Dr. Jenet Klyburn and I used to be important in The DC Universe. I was the head of research at S.T.A.R. Labs' Metropolis branch. Before The Crisis On Infinite Earths, heroes from all over used to come to me for my expertise in...well...just about everything.

I mean, I used to be somebody. Now, post-Crisis, I've been relegated to a guest appearance in Power Company #5.

My last app...*choke* *sob* appearance was in The Power Company. Dammit, a dog deserves better than that. Did they find that cocaine? It wasn't mine! I have a doctorate, for God's sake! *choke*

*sigh*

I'll need a moment to adjust one of the many mini-skirts I wear while doing lab work. You know, one of the ones I wear which allows me to show off just how damned good Jose' Luis Garcia-Lopez is at drawing long legs like mine.

You don't understand. I used to work with the greats. Wherever there was a crisis, there I was, side-by-side, chin-stroking with the likes of Doc Magnus, Cave Carson. I was The DCU's resident expert of physics and... spelunking and...stuff.

In the 80's, they all used to come see me for whatever ailed them. Firestorm used to fly in all of the time, crying about how he just couldn't "transmute" like all of the other guys. I'd sit there, nodding my head, praying he'd learn how to "transmute" a "Shut the *uck up!"

Who taught Blue Devil to love being tall and horny?

Me.

Cyborg used to drop by all the time looking for some "tweakin'" That bit got tired real quick. He was no Black Lightning, let me tell you.

Superman, for some reason, used to stop by all the time. Asking for a full work-up. Funny thing, I could never find a single thing wrong with him. To this day, I cannot figure out why everytime he'd leave he'd wink and say something like "Blue" or "Pink" or "Cuffs and Collars." I just don't get that guy's Kryptonian sense of humor.

Understand this: They used to come see me. Not T.O. Morrow's crazy "make-a-crazy-ass robot" robot makin' ass.

Me. Dr. Jenet "Big Red" Klyburn.

Not Doc Magnus. Big ol' queen, by the way. I mean, that girl robot of his has practically been throwin' her mechanical ***** at him for forty years and all he does is puff harder on that pipe of his. You don't need a scientist to know what's up with that.

Doc Magnus, come out, you're gaeeeeyay! (Said to the tune of "Warriors! Come out and playeeeyay.)

Come on! There're worlds dyin' out there and where am I? Motherlovin' limbo, hair done, wearing my mini, dammit, that's where!

*sigh*

Can I come home?

Can I?

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Justice League: (Old) West


After reading Jonah Hex #1, this question was posed to me:

"If The Justice League were composed of DC Comics' Western Heroes, who would be on the team?"

Instantly, I thought that Jonah Hex would fill the Batman role perfectly. Next, I thought, "Who would be The Flash?" This fella came to mind almost immediately.

Nighthawk and Cinnamon would be a natural lock for Hawkman and Hawkwoman with "Pow-Wow" Smith acting as The Martian Manhunter. You know, the whole "trapped between two worlds" thing and all...

or I have to ask, "By lumping them all together, do we diminish these heroes by trying to make them what we need them to be?"

Superheroes?

Before there were Wonder Women and Supermen to take care of The DC Universe, ordinary men and women took up arms it upon themselves to make a hard world better.

Either way I think they're pretty damned special. What do you all think?

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Number Three Of "Seven Hells'!" Soldiers"


I've often said that if I have any sort of morality about me it came from my family and comic books.

I've always believed in certain and absolute truths.

Somehow, after the things I've had to bear witness to, I still believe in justice.

I believe that in order for an American Way to exist, truth and justice must take precedence.

I believe in helping those in need. I believe in the ability to overcome impossible odds in the pursuit of something better.

After all these years, I still believe that a towel tied around a child's shoulders is one of the most beautiful, most purest of things.

After more than 30 years, I still believe in Superman.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Logo


I'm trying. I'm trying really hard.

Nothardenough.

I just don't like this logo!

The more I see it on product outside of comics, the more ridiculous it looks to me. It's distracting me. The moment I saw it on the image to the right, my first and only thought was, "Wow! That would be so much cooler if it were the old logo."

The old logo is classic. It does nothing to impede. It only was there to enhance whatever it was placed on. It holds up well under less "comic-booky" conditions and well...it looks like it wouldn't have to be replaced once every five years.

I know DC won't bring it back but dang, how I already miss it on my box of Justice League Mac & Cheese.