Thursday, November 30, 2006

The Shame!


We all have them. Badges. Things we wear on our sleeves to signify our pride, our accomplishments. Today, I would like to focus on the badges we hide. The ones that come wrapped in gold lame' dresses we wore to prom or the purple suits we proudly wore to that big job interview.

I speak of.... SHAME.

More specifically, COMIC BOOK SHAME. What I want to know is what is your most embarrasing comic book purchase.. EVAR?!?

How many copies of Ninjak#1 are gathering mold in your long box?

What was the most embarrasing comic book related thing that ever happened to you?

Did you ever thought the girl working behind the counter at the comic store was there for you to date? Did you find out otherwise?

I'll start... I can't bring myself to open any one of my five poly-bagged copies of Superman #75, "The Death of Superman".

Friday, November 17, 2006

Dear Mike Pellegrino...


...here is a picture of Kristen Bell channeling Veronica Lake or Black Canary, whichever one come first to your mind.

You should let this be the last thing you see tonight so that we all know you went to sleep happy.

Signed, your pals at the comic shop.


Thursday, November 16, 2006

The Legacy Virus or Conway Is The New Black

  • Catman is unceremoniously taken out of the picture by showing up and being utterly ineffective.
  • The Secret Society of Super-Villains forms.
  • Mind-wipes soon follow.
  • The Justice League under attack by Starro.
  • Black Lightning offered Justice League membership.
  • Vixen and Firestorm emerge as DCU players.
Are these simply the recent happenings of the DC Universe or are these events rooted in something deeper, with repercussions that would not be felt for nearly thirty years. Ladies and gentlemen, I have come to the realization that Brad Meltzer became a comics fan during...

(By the way, this pirate is gay, now.)

THE AGE OF CONWAY.

Writer Gerry Conway came to DC after writing titles such as The Amazing Spider-Man and The Incredible Hulk for Marvel Comics. Conway immediately hit the ground running, writing many of DC's marquee comics, among them, Detective Comics, Superman and The Justice League of America. While writing Justice League, Conway flirted with the idea of Black Lightning joining The JLofA but had Lightning turn them down, as he preferred to work alone. Conway also went on to create characters for DC such as the previously mentioned Vixen and Firestorm, while also launching, in his newly minted position as writer/editor, a new title, The Secret Society of Super-Villains. In SSoSV, Catman never actually joined, he just fell off his yacht. Somewhere, a young Brad Meltzer is reading.

Fast forward twenty-plus years and New York Times bestselling author is writing Green Arrow and following up on his influences. Catman immediately gets his ass kicked by Green Arrow basically falling off the boat all over again per SSoSV. Fast forward to Identity Crisis and after a twenty-plus year absence, The Society is re-formed and in its wake Conway creation Ronny Raymond (Firestorm) is killed as Conway's other DC creation, Vixen, looks on, helplessly. Later, Meltzer plays with a thread laid down in the pages of Conway's Justice League of America run. This thread, under Meltzer, involving the mind-wiping of heroes and villains would extend another two years within the pages of Green Arrow, Teen Titans and Catwoman, amongst others.

Recently, in the pages of Justice League of America #3 (formerly JLA), Black Lightning and Vixen have both joined The League just in time to fend off a Starro invasion, one probably similar in scope to the Conway-penned JLofA #170.

So, is Brad simply riffing on the chords laid down by Conway or is he simply doing the exact same thing we all would like to do if we got the chance, taking small notes from different places in order to build a symphony?

Any way you look at it, good or bad, Gerry Conway, through Meltzer, has became an uncredited architect for DC's "New Earth." One in which, for the most part, we've all have actively enjoyed and participated in.

What do you think?

Friday, November 10, 2006

Is It Just Me?

I'm trying to get over it but it just won't go away. My friends and myself know all too well what the symptoms are but we're all a little afraid to ask one another for fear of being "that guy." We're kind of quietly trying to help one another work through it, though.

For Infinite Crisis' seven issues, we got to look over Golden Age Superman's shoulder and the view was wonderful. It absolutely looked like possibility.

Myself and my friends, we're all of us suffering from "Post-Traumatic Infinite Crisis Disappointment Disorder." After spending two years on the Identity-DC Countdown-Infinite Crisis-52 Rollercoaster, we're all coming down from the rush and asking ourselves....

"Was that it?"
  • "Alexander Luthor nearly killed comics' original sidekick Dick Grayson (Nightwing) just so he could become a male model?"
  • "Superman, Wonder Woman & Batman are still sitting at that table?!?"
  • "Why would you remove the fun from the DCU by turning Bart Allen into another circa mid-80's New Teen Titans brooding young adult?"
  • "When are we getting a new issue of Wonder Woman or Green Lantern?"
  • "Holy crud, The Outsiders could get worse."

This was not the world I envisioned. Do not get me wrong there have been many gems unearthed from the mines. Quite a few books have totally taken advantage of the "New Earth" landscape and fashioned something beautiful in its wake...

  • Books such as Green Arrow, Secret Six, Uncle Sam and the Freedom Fighters & Checkmate has totally taken advantage of the DCU's new greyscale.
  • Superman is Superman all over again and in a good way.
  • Batman has become a superhero again and less a force of nature.
  • Despite a rocky start, Supergirl has become a comic about a displaced alien girl and in a good way.
  • Shadowpact is led by Detective Chimp. No more need be said.

All great books but something's lacking, a sense of urgency that was there before. For a while now, my comics brethren have been asking the hard questions and the answers seem to neither be forthcoming or have left a little something to be desired.

"Nightwing should be dead. We're working on it."

"Trust us, there's a good reason we replaced Wally with Bart!"

"Allen Heinberg's working on Grey's Anatomy and will deliver the scripts as fast as he can."


Look, I appreciate Mr. Heinberg's work as much as anyone and it is worth the wait but dammit, I am tired of writers from other media professing a love for the comics medium and their utter disregard of one of its oldest tenets: Comics are a monthly medium.*

Somewhere along the line, momentum was gained and lost, nearly simultaneously, some good will along with it.

How to fix it? I have no idea but I do know that I'm ready for some kind of payoff so that we all can simply just move on to the next thing.

...and that, my friends, is my rant for the day.

*I'm looking at you too, Lindelof.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Any Guesses?



Funniest comic book-related thing I've heard all week: "God! The next issue of _________ is gonna be excruciating. It's painful to watch a guy write a character who's smarter than him."

Any guesses who said writer may be.

Lady Cop Fact No. 3: How did Bart Allen, the current Flash, come back from the future a man? The specifics are murky but he somehow saw Lady Cop naked.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Rack Raids!


Nearly four years ago, a friend of mine by the name of Sean Fahey was writing a comics review column called "Thor's Comic Column" for the movie review site, CHUD. Sean, by himself, wrote every review...

...until, he made the mistake of asking me to write with him. The results of that unholy alliance led to this very blog.

Sean is very sorry for any hurt he's caused.

Four years later, "Thor's Comic Column" has grown into a mighty crew of nearly a dozen reviewers, myself still included.

Recently the decision was made to move "Thor's Comic Column" and try something different. The results?


With a dash of humor & a strong sense of comics history, I honestly believe the Rack Raid reviewers to be, hands down, the best anywhere. Blog. Comics news website. The best.

Period.

They're totally worth a look and hopefully, your time.

Friday, November 03, 2006

What's Wrong With This Picture?

52 happens in real time, right? If I'm celebrating Halloween, shouldn't the inhabitants of 52 be doing so, as well.

Then what was the deal with Jack Ryder and his Christmas tree in November?

I guess he really is the DCU's Bill O 'Reilly, taking back Christmas, one panel at a time.

Lady Cop Fact No. 2: Lady Cop is, in fact, a third cousin to Yakko, Wakko & Dot.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

The Life Aquatic




Over at BIGMONKEYCOMICS.com, we scooped the big boys and broke the story that DC has decided to beat swords into ploghshares. As of issue 50, Aquaman: Sword of Atlantis will become Aquaman. How novel. It will be written by science fiction/comic scribe Tad Williams.

Feel free to read the interview as it is really good, offering major insight into many things Aquaman.








...and if you've been reading "Seven Hells!" lately you might have noticed that a certain somebody stopped by and dropped a bombshell on her way out the door.

Something "Lady Cop" may be happening in The All-New Atom #6.

Will she joining the cast? Will she be just be mentioned? I have no idea but all I can say is this:

Any Lady Cop is good Lady Cop.

So to celebrate, as of today, I'm starting the "Countdown To The All-New Atom #6." Everyday I will leave you with fabulous facts you might not have known about Liza Warner, Lady Cop.

Lady Cop Fact No. 1: Liza Warner's billy club was, at one point, The Spear of Destiny.