Friday, August 31, 2007

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Why I Don't Respect Green Arrow

I absolutely HATE Green Arrow, as a character.

Hate him.

Why? Is it the constant political posturing foisted upon the character?

Is it the constant womanizing?

Is it because when his adopted son, Roy Harper, developed a drug problem, Ollie cast him out and walked out on him when he needed him most?

Is it the fact that the he fathers children, left and right, and then abandons them?

Is the fact that he lives a lie everyday, letting the world, his son, Connor Hawke and his soon-to-be (?) bride, Black Canary, believe he had no idea Connor was alive until he presented himself in his early twenties?

It's all of the above... and then some.

What actually cemented my hate for this character was the seventy-fifth issue of Green Arrow.

The one in which he lost his manhood.

It was, perhaps, the worst day he'd ever had. Deathstroke had systematically taken down his entire family.

Connor was down, Mia (Speedy) was out, Black Canary was inches away from having her throat slashed.

What part made me want to vomit?

Was it the part where he dropped to his knees, begging Deathstroke to spare his family?

Nope. I actually admired that.

Was it the part where he cried while doing so, not knowing whether or not his family would make it out alive?

Nope.

I can get behind that.

So, where did I lose respect?

The final scene where after The Justice League saves the day.

Where Oliver Queen tells his ex, Black Canary, the reason he wanted to become a better man was so he could get her back.

Then, he proposes to her.

No. Just....

No.

Black Canary proved day-in and day-out that she's better off without him. He never made the choice to actively become better off without her. He never asked himself whether or not she was better off without him.

We've all taken our own personal walks through hell, confronted personal demons and the like. We've all taken personal rolls of the dice and taken bets on ourselves. It should be done out of a fundamental belief in self.

In this undertaking, one should become a better person for self, first and foremost.

Not from a place of rejection.

Kids, do NOT try this at home.

That way lies failure.

Oliver Queen's reasons for his continued existence are egocentric, existing only to further his inate ability to set himself and those close to him up for further failure and disappointment.

In trying to make himself better for someone else, Oliver Queen succeeds only in further showcasing his selfishness.

Oliver Queen is an a-hole.

Hawkman does not approve of your actions.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Dream Teams: Round Two


We've played this game before but recently, comics have seen an influx of new and good talent.

Now's as good a time as any to let loose...

I'll start...

Writer: Greg Rucka
Artist: Pat Gleason

Character: Any incarnation of Dick Grayson


Writer: Sean McKeever
Artist: Cliff Chiang

Character: Power Girl


Your turn....

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Call Me Crazy...

OK, so I bought the Secrets of Isis on DVD and it's just awful... but in that suh-weet Seventies "AfterSchool Special" sort of way.

That way that a kid brings a gun to school and "everyone-learns-a-valuable-lesson-without anyone-getting-capped" sort of way.

If I had a time machine, screw going back in time and buying Microsoft stock, I'd go back and try and get a job writing for The Secrets of Isis.

That way, I could look forward to the future and knowing I'd be doing DVD commentary, saying stuff like, "God, I don't remember writing this show at all. It was the Seventies. I was coked out of my mind. Hell, we all were. Wanna learn how to fold a piece of paper into a boat?"

Anyway, while watching the DVD, two things stood out, Isis (Joanna Cameron) was GORGEOUS!

Two, she reminded me of someone kicking around TV, nowadays....

Call me "crazy" but I think Evangeline Lily kinda looks like her, even down to the crazy freckled nose...

Am I the only one seeing this?


Friday, August 24, 2007

"Seven Hells" Version 8.0?

I've been thinking about this long and hard and I've come to this conclusion....

I ADORE COMICS.

Yup. That's the big conclusion, the big revelation:

i. adore. comics. (Drawing a little heart on top of the "i.")

That said, I've been thinking about doing this for a while now and I think the time is right.

The white tigers are getting bigger and have begun exploring the compound on their own, hunting on their own. Halle & Rosario are off doing whatever it is women do when I'm not with them and my concerns have turned elsewhere.

Comics.

I'm doing them a bit of a disservice.

Specifically, by speaking of DC Comics, only.

Don't get me wrong, I love DC Comics but comics I absolutely adore.

I think I should simply talk about comics more.

I love Brian Wood and Ryan Kelly's Oni series, Local and I'm excited about their 2008 Minx OGN, The New York Four.

After reading the Phonogram tpb, I'm primed for Image's Suburban Glamour.

I'm sad I won't see new Queen & Country comics until 2009.

You all deserve be reading Scalped.

Immortal Iron Fist has everything I'm looking for in a comic: legacy, action and head-butting.

There's another comics newsmag, Comic Foundry, out there other than Wizard.

I like that. I'm looking forward to COMICS.

Times are good.

I want to talk more about GOOD comics. Good comics deserve to spoken of.

Does that mean this blog won't be "DC-centric" anymore. Not at all.

Just means this blog won't always be about "DC." Like, 1 percent of the time or whenever the mood strikes.

I just want to occasionally give myself the option is all.

I'm excited about comics again, period.

I will continue to write about what I love. DC Comics.

I will write about what I adore. COMICS.

There're a lot of universes out there. Why limit oneself?

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Devon's Subtext Follies


Wait a minute.

That's Holly & Harley...

On second thought, that last one may not have any subtext, after all.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Greatest Missed Opportunities: Sub Diego


The shorthand of it all was rather brilliant.

Floating panda.

We were introduced to it through a floating... panda!

San Diego had fallen into the ocean and to emphasize the fantastic scope of it all, writer Will Pfeiffer shocked me into the fantastic.

Moments before, a city very much rooted in what we knew as reality, became irrevocably changed by a writer thinking it, "DC."

Victims of a powerful earthquake, San Diegoans suddenly were at the ocean's mercy, asking God to not let them die this way. Soon, the reality of it all set in. God did not let them go. The ocean wouldn't let them go, in fact, it embraced them.

Ordinary men & women suddenly found themselves thrust into a new world.

A world in which they, literally, breathed in the ocean.

Into this horror crept the realization that many of them were trapped into this with no warning and utmost in their minds, no way around this foreign land of floating pandas and curious fish.

That was until a lone man, born into this world, became their greatest ally, displaying why he was called, "king."

This city became the new domain of a hero, The King of The Seven Seas, Aquaman.

They panicked, they howled, they fought to get to the surface and he let the ocean do his bidding. The sharks kept the ones who tried to escape inside the ocean. The whales stopped dogs too wrapped in being dogs (not listening) from killing themselves. On the surface, the humans did what they could, tossing what animals they could back into the ocean.

Below, the king took their pain unto himself and delivered them news he'd heard himself many times before... they could never go home.

And with that, the ocean took their tears as surely as it had everything else.

---------------------

This was Sub Diego.

This world was the stuff DC Comics were made of. A world into which Aquaman as king and character could thrive. A world where one ordinary San Diego girl becomes extraordinary, displaying the ability to breathe both above and below.

Sub Diego gave us Lorena Marquez, the current ( and IMHO, best) Aquagirl.

Sub Diego gave us an Aquaman at his very best, fighting to give the banished a sense of normalcy in a world without precedent.

This was a world without wizards and magical legacies set upon blonde haired children. This was world where mystical healing hands made of water were incorporated into the tapestry yet took a backseat to the needs of a new democracy suddenly beset with drugs.

It was a city. It was what DC did best.

The city became a character.

The city showed promise.

The city had stories to tell.

During 52: World War III, in what seemed to me, an afterthought, the stories were, I kid you not, "wished" away.

The story of Sub Diego ended as it began.

With tragedy... only minus the brilliance of a floating panda .

Monday, August 20, 2007

"Seven Hells'" 5 Smartest People In The DC Universe

I mean, really...

What's not to love about the guy?

He's the comic book equivalent of Nikola Tesla.

He invents televisions that broadcast the future.

Out of boredom, he invents robots that infiltrate Justice Leagues.

His name is the coolest in comics.

He sips cocktails to let you know how little he cares for your impending doom.

While the world's best minds cowered like mice after being targeted by a freshly-returned-from-genocide Black Adam, this man almost single-handedly defeated the World's Deadliest Mortal.

How did he do this?

Science.

The man's frickin' superpower is science.

Science.

5. T.O. MORROW.

Gorilla geniuses consider this man a threat.

Where T.O. Morrow is Tesla, Lex Luthor is Edison, conquering the world through practical application.

If he has to steal that innovation, well....

Luthor's greatest strength is his conviction.

Lex Luthor realizes the world needs heroes. In Luthor's world, heroes don't fly into burning buildings on flying carpets. No, heroes are made so through LexCorp innovation. Your children DESERVE to be saved by men wearing LexCorp designed jetpacks.

This is the world Luthor envisions when he closes his eyes. A world embracing innovation, shunning the alien.

Remember this man has seen Kandor.

He knows that through science and cunning, he can make this and any other world fit in the palm of his very human hand.

4. LEX LUTHOR


He's, in my opinion, the second smartest man alive.

From an early age, he displayed "a natural aptitude for having natural aptitudes."

He is simply, a man of disciplines.

He speaks several different languages fluently, is a gold medal winning decathelete and more imporantly, holds 14 different Ph.D's.

He has created technology that renders him invisible to all machines.

He's created venerated technology that has been co-opted by The Batman.

He was man enough to be proud of the accomplishment.

When the same Batman needed someone to help take out one of his own co-opted inventions, he called upon him.

A former JSA chairman and current head of Checkmate, he is almost always "the best man for the job."
3. MR. TERRIFIC

What CAN'T you say about the man?

Before a term for it even existed, he was the world's greatest criminal profiler.

He has contingency plans to destroy The Justice League, should it ever come to that.

A brilliant futurist, from his mind sprung cars modeled on bats and powered by rocket fuel.

He keeps a secret headquarters on a distant planet, you know, just... because.

2. BATMAN

The smartest thing one can do in this life is decide to live.

Live, despite setback.

Live, despite fear.

Live knowing that life is about adapting.

She was a librarian and gymnast with Olympic-level ability.

She was Batgirl.

Those few who knew of her other life thought of her as nothing other than a youthful sidekick.

It took a bullet to prove them wrong.

Barbara Gordon, as a librarian, knew information means power.

In The DC Universe, no one is more powerful.

Possessing a genius intellect, photographic memory and unparalleled knowledge of computers, she re-invented herself as the DCU's information broker Oracle.

She who controls the information, controls the world.

She's put herself in a position where Batman comes to her.

A great leader, she realizes that it is of vital import to surround herself with the best. Her greatest asset is her ability to take those at a crossroads and show them a new way.

Whether it's a Black Canary fresh from a break-up with an "ex," a Huntress newly cast out from The Justice League and The Bat-Family or giving a home to Lady Blackhawk some 60 years removed from the ones she considered family, Oracle has learned that there is strength in making others stronger.

Being able to make strawberry flavored, nuclear powered hand grenades doesn't necessarily make you the smartest.

Seeing potential in everything and nearly everyone.

That, in my opinion, makes Oracle the smartest person in The DC Universe.

1. ORACLE

Big Monkey Podcast : I Do Black Manta Proud

The podcast in which I speak of sausage and penisholes...

and COMICS.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Just A Thought



Let's start with a cliche'.

"If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans."

I always hated that one for reasons, secular and non.

The point of this post is a simple one. Plans were made by DC Comics to kill a creation. A creation that, in my opinion, re-ushered in a sense of wonder to the DCU that had long gone missing.

June, 1994, we all who stuck around, were treated to The DCU through the wide eyes of a child and in that, I became a fan of The Flash mythos and more inportantly, a fan of Mike Wieringo.

I absolutely loved Bart's unique brand of wide-eyed optimism and sweetness. From what little I know of the man, he fully embodied his own creation.

Let me say this outright, I'm not calling for any sort of petition to undo whatever grand plan DC has in killing Bart Allen but in a universe that's all about legacy, I just think it's an absolute shame that this man's greatest contribution to it has been laid silent.

It would simply be nice to look at things through wide eyes again.

Monday, August 13, 2007

R.I.P. Mike Wieringo


Have you ever gotten your ass kicked so badly that you couldn't believe ass-kickings of the like even existed?

That's what today feels like.

One of the purest, most creative artists of this or any generation, my absolute favorite artist, Mike Wieringo, passed away.

You have no idea how much this saddens me.

Mike Wieringo, in the few times I met him, was always kind to me with his time and abilities. One of my absolute joys in comics fandom was the day I walked up to him, sketchbook in hand, and asked him to draw a sketch of Lady Cop.

After hours of sketching Spider-Man, The Thing and other world renowned comics luminaries, the look of absolute befuddlement on this man's face as I showed him 1st Issue Special #4 will stay with me to the end of my days.

Mike's work was an absolute joy to behold. There he was, in the midst of the grim 'n gritties, doing what he does best: characters unafraid to curl their mouths into a smile. Whether it was Robin, The Flash, Rogue, Spider-Man, Tellos or his most lasting contribution to the comics medium, Bart Allen (Impulse), one could feel the absolute joy this man took in sharing his abilities.

I have had the pleasure of meeting him and thanking him for his contributions to the medium and each time, he would put his hand out and shake my own.

It was my absolute honor to have had the the opportunity to have met him and to simply be given the chance to have done so.

The medium and we all are just that much richer for having you, Mike.

May God bless and keep you.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

The Big Monkey Podcast: Confirming Something's Wrong With Us Since 2007

I'd had massive amounts of blood drawn from me.

Jon Carey was hopped up on cold medicine.

Ben was sleep deprived and jittery from Red Bull.

Then, Jon Brooks amputated his left hand and replaced it with a mystical healing water hand.

Scip was...

Scip.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Re-Forging


There hasn't been any content worth noting here in the past couple of weeks.

Which leads me to this...

I'm taking some time off. A week or so should do.

And no, nothing's horribly wrong. Here's the deal...

Right now, it doesn't feel like I'm even trying to write.

Lately, it feels as though all I've been doing is posting up pictures, commenting on them and walking away.

There are numerous comics blogs that do that and have no problem with it.

I sorta do.

I want to get back to actually doing something I'd actually like to read.

Ideas are important to me.

I have ideas. Plenty of good ones, too. I have a new banner. I want to present them to you. Until I feel as though I can actually do them justice, well...

Instead of having you wonder about the lack of posts over the next week or so, I thought you'd like to know what was going on.

See you soon,
Devon

Thursday, August 02, 2007

I'm A Character!

The phone rings.

"Have you read all of your comics?" asked Scip.

"Not all of them. Halle, go back to sleep." said I.

"Have you read this week's Action Comics #835?"

"Not yet."

"You're a character in the DC Universe. Take a look at page four."

I leap over the Oscar winner and smooth away the previous day's $100 bills cluttering this week's comics and there it is...

I AM A COP IN METROPOLIS!!!!

So's Scip!

Thank you, Kurt Busiek, you magnificent man for bringing the inevitable Brave and The Bold Devon/Lady Cop team-up issue just that much closer to reality.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Devon's Kinda True Cully Hamner Story


Cully: How's it goin'?

Devon: Ummm... fine. You still doing sketches?

Cully: Yeah. I am. What would you like?

Devon: Ummm... Tesla Strong.

Cully: Hm. O.K.


Devon: Great. (Hands him cash) Thanks.


(I hover for a bit.)

Devon: I'm sorry for hovering but I have to say this....

Devon: I always thought you were Black.

Cully: (Laughing) Brian (Stelfreeze), did you hear that?


Brian: No. What was it?


Cully: (Pointing at me) He thought I was Black.


Brian: You're not.

Cully: You know you're the second person to say that? Why are people amazed that I'm not Black?


Devon: Well, you used to draw Green Lantern: Mosaic, right?


Cully: Yeah?

Devon: Well, you, keep in mind it was the early 90's, right? Black characters were being drawn like White people but with Afros. You used to draw John Stewart with... umm... kinda big lips.

Cully: (Laughing) Yeah?

Devon: I figured you were either Black or just a really good artist. Now, I know that you're just a really good artist.


Then, he pulled out a twenty-one sided die, made a critical hit, conjured up a Pegasus and rode off into the sunset.

Cully Hamner is a really good artist who'll be drawing Black Lightning: Year One soon and I can't wait.