Saturday, February 23, 2008
There's only one way to mark pal Dorian's birthday...
...and that's with
Not that Dor has any shortage of nekkid Wildcat pictures, but, you know, it's the thought that counts.
Happy Birthday, buddy!
Beware the Flaming Cornucopia.
Batman #299 (May 1978) - art by Jim Aparo
Only posted because that's the single greatest villainess costume of all time. MS. DISCO STATUE OF JUNGLE LIBERTY-X DEMANDS YOUR SURRENDER.
Friday, February 22, 2008
There is a notable lack of All Star Batman on this list.
"Eight comic books to read before you die."
Swamp Thing is on the list. This writer...he has pleased me.
I haven't looked at the comments for that article yet, but I'm sure hijinks have ensued in full force there.
By which I mean "Wolverine's penis."
So I've been sitting on this issue of Adventures of the X-Men #4 (July 1996) for a while now, because it features C'thulhu and "the ancient R'lyeh texts" and other kinda-sorta Lovecraftian things being raised by the Marvel Universe demons, the N'Garai. It all sounds a lot more interesting than it actually is, so basically, I never got around to it.
But I was poking through the comic again, and noticed something. The story begins with Cyclops out riding a motorcycle and coming across trouble, which, you know, is gonna happen. As the story progresses, the motorcycle gets lost during some battle or other, and the issue ends with Wolverine whining about it:
First, if you knew anyone who referred to himself as "the old Canucklehead," I'd imagine you'd do your best to stop knowing him in short order. Second, I tried to cut off as much Gambit as I could in this scan...I apologize for not being entirely successful. Third, Wolvie explicitly says the motorcycle was his, but let's look at the license plate of the motorcycle Cyclops was riding:
So, the posssible explanations:
1. This is Cyclops' motorcycle -- he bought the cycle, registered it, paid extra for the personalized plates -- but because Wolverine is a big greedy grabby jerk, he decided at some point prior to this story to lay claim to it, and uses it whenever he feels like without asking Cyclops for permission. And, thus, feels it's his bike.
2. It actually is Wolverine's motorcycle, and he has the "ONE EYE" personalized plates to mock Cyclops for not being cool enough to have a bike of his own.
3. Wolverine and Cyclops went in "halvsies" on buying the bike, and Cyclops won the coin toss and got to personalize the plates.
4. It actually is Wolverine's motorcycle, and "ONE EYE" actually refers to...um, something else. Compensating much, Wolvie?
Well, here's a bit of the C'thulhu-esque shenanigans at work in this story...this is the only cool part, honest. I couldn't even fit it all on the scanner:
And Wolverine, of course, can't shut up about it. I always figured Wolverine was a little more stoic than this:
Thursday, February 21, 2008
The dorkiest geek that's ever nerded.
A BRIEF NEW COMICS RUNDOWN:
In other news:
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Happy 2nd Annual Ultimate Hulk Vs. Wolverine Day!
Once again, just like last year, I'm observing Ultimate Hulk Vs. Wolverine Day on New Comics Day rather than the actual date (Feb. 22nd), since it seems a little more fitting that way.
But, yes, as hard as it is to believe, it has been two full years since Ultimate Wolverine Vs. Hulk #2 was unleashed upon the comics buying public, leaving us with four issues to go.
When the television writers strike occurred, there was a brief moment of wide-eyed optimism, that perhaps the TV writer in question responsible for this series would be able to find the time to script four more issues of Hulk and Wolverine beating the tar out of each other...but I haven't heard anything about it. Okay, granted, I haven't really been looking, but I imagine if there was any real news about it, I wouldn't have been able to avoid it. (EDIT: Here's a report from July about the writer's alleged progress -- thanks, Kevin!)
So, I don't know what more I can add about the absolute ridiculousness of the lateness of this book that I didn't say last time. Minor delays here and there are one thing...a two year delay in the middle of a six issue mini is whole 'nother problem entirely. There's apparently a rumor going around that DC Comics may be instituting a policy to avoid problems like this, though it remains to be seen how well that sort of thing would work out. I'd settle for a "no year-long gap between issues on an alleged monthly" policy.
Oh, well. So, will I be celebrating the 3rd Annual Ultimate Wolverine Vs. Hulk Day next year? Pop by then and find out!
In other news;
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Every occurrence (I believe) of the sound effect "POW" from Jack Kirby's original New Gods saga, as presented in the six issue deluxe format series from 1984:
BUT NO BOOM TUBE
Monday, February 18, 2008
"Look out, world!"
So for whatever reason, we were discussing at work the point in Wonder Woman's history when her chest emblem changed from the eagle's wings to the more marketable and copyrightable double-W design. That happened here, in issue #288 of Wonder Woman (Feb 1982)...well, actually, it happens in a preview insert in DC Comics Presents #41 and continues into this issue of the Wonder Woman series proper:
"Wonder Woman is bustin' loose!" is sorta unfortunate phrasing, given the part of the costume that's changed. And it seems odd that the new costume's introduction occured in a preview insert in a Superman team-up book....well, except for the fact that the team-up book's sales probably were much higher than the then-traditionally poor-selling Wonder Woman.
The panel of the actual hand-off of the new costume, though a bit more sizable in the preview, is squeezed into the bottom corner of one of the pages:
The Wonder Woman Foundation, as most of you already know but I mention here since the person I was talking about this with at the shop didn't, was a real world charitable organization backed by DC and its parent company Warner Brothers. I tried to find some info online through a little Googling, but mostly found just brief references to it. Pro comics letterer Todd Klein mentioned that the Foundation was very shortlived, and this cataloging of Gloria Steinem's papers features a brief description of the Foundation near the bottom of the page, noting that the few papers Steinem had relating to the Foundation mostly related to awards ceremonies. (Also noted is that this college also has more Foundation paperwork, but it's not available for examination at this time.)
As to the comic itself...Gene Colan was the artist for this issue, and he struck me as an odd choice for the Wonder Woman book...he tends to strike me as an odd choice for a superhero book, given his style is more suited to dark, moody, and mysterious settings and characters, rather than slick, streamlined superbeings in skintight suits. And yes, I'm aware he's done some classic superhero work...I did recently note my appreciation of this series, after all. And he was a good match for Batman. But Wonder Woman? Feels like an odd choice, with the occasional strange-looking panel:
But I do still love Colan's art, as occasionally quirky as it may be, and as occasionally oddly suited it may be for a particular assignment. As noted in Les Daniels' book Wonder Woman: The Complete History, then-WW writer Roy Thomas recalled that Colan had to remember to draw full, clearly visible shots of Wonder Woman to show off the new logo, rather than leaving her or her costume obscured in shadow. But shadowy art or not, Colan still did a nice art job on Wonder Woman, if not in a style one would normally expect for this title.
And Wonder Woman may be all about female power, there's still a little something for the lads in this issue...by which I mean "shower scene:"
I do like that Thomas goes out of his way to explain that, hey, it's magic, that's how Wonder Woman's costume just appears. I think the phrase "we must leave it to prophets and pundits to ponder just how how [sic] her spinning lariat weaves the garments" is overstating it a little. "Prophets?"
And in conclusion, I love this guy from the cover:
Now that's a face with character. No one does 'em like Mr. Colan.
By the way, that Todd Klein link includes further discussion of the WW emblem transition, including a page from DCCP #41 with the logo handoff.
Sunday, February 17, 2008
Halloween in February.
So I was putting together an order of Robotech comics for a customer when I noticed a serious case of "jaggies" on the logo for the Halloween Special. Now, this was 1996, so font-smoothing wasn't an esoteric technology or anything, so either this accidentally slipped by the editors or it was a deliberate design choice. If it was deliberate...well, it didn't work. (Or the third possibility..."Hey, that's good enough...send it to print, move on to the next book.")
The only reason I really spent extra time looking at this comic, when normally I couldn't care one way or the other about Robotech, was my very brief curiosity as to what would make a Robotech adventure particularly Halloweeny. Answer: haven't the foggiest, though someone mentions ghost stories at one point. But during my brief scan of the book, I did notice the letters page, which featured three readers' letters...two of which were from my hometown of Oxnard, CA. I know nobody else could possibly care about this, but I was amused by it, at any rate.
And hey, chances were that we sold 'em the Robotech comics they were commenting upon! Okay, they could have bought them somewhere else, but there weren't a whole lot of shops at the time willing to give up shelf space to low-selling black and white indies, except for chumps like us who were still attempting the "full line comic shop" thing at a time when the industry was about one Deathmate away from disappearing forever. So, anyway, who knows. I don't recognize the letter writers' names, at any rate.
Okay, enough about me, let's talk more about me: