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Progressive Ruin presents…the End of Civilization.

§ January 2nd, 2017 § Filed under End of Civilization § 10 Comments

It’s 2017, and here comes the End of Civilization! …No, come back! I mean my regular journey through the new issue of Diamond Previews (the January 2017 edition, in this case)! Anyway, come along with me and we’ll see what the coming year has in store for us…and before you get mad about the crayon joke, I remind you it could be referring to the pantsuits.

p. 78 – He-Man and the Masters of the Universe: A Character Guide and World Compendium:

At last, a comprehensive listing of high tides, sunrises and sunsets in Eternia, as well as a copy of its constitution and all sporting event results. Skeletor may have tried to keep all this important information to himself, but no more, I say!
p. 123 – Dark Knight III The Master Race #8:

FINALLY, after all the delays the exciting conclusion is h–

p. 125 – Booster Gold/The Flintstones Annual #1:

Of course this paves the way for the Flintstones to go up against the menace of Vandal Savage, or for them to meet Bomba or Anthro…don’t tell me you don’t want to see that.
p. 162 – DC Designer Series The Joker by Brian Bolland Statue:

“It was at around this point of the development of civilization that humanity first started associating recording devices called ‘cameras’ with evil clowns, for reasons that now elude us,” declared the future clown-historians of the year 12,000.
p. 203 – Top 100 Comic Book Movies:

I’m going to have to warn you, there’s a huge drop-off in quality between the number one movie and number two.
p. 291 – Millennium Asteroids T-Shirt:

Okay, for a second there you almost had me, since in Previews it’s hard to see the detail of the Millennium Falcon in there. I’d probably wear actual (and licensed!) t-shirts of old Atari games. They’d probably sell a million of these. And surely you’d get plenty of irony-sales to computer programmers for this design. And who wouldn’t want to wear this? Just Boston fans alone….
p. 291 – Uncivil War Inaugural Edition Coloring Book:

MEANWHILE, AT CRAYOLA INDUSTRIES: “I don’t get it? Our orange crayon sales are through the roof!”
p. 310 – Bart Simpson Suckerpunch GN:

I don’t think anyone expected a Simpsons adaptation of this Zack Snyder film. You’ll never look at Agnes Skinner the same away again.
p. 319 – The March of the Crabs Vol. 2 HC:

I didn’t look very closely at this at first and I immediately thought “oh no, poor John Lewis.”
p. 348 – Nancy Drew & The Hardy Boys The Big Lie #1:

Finally, a follow-up to this comic where our favorite junior detectives finally dig down to THE TRUTH.
p. 361 – The Badger Color Therapy for Adults Coloring Book:

In case you wanted to make up your own conclusion for the previous Badger mini-series, since the last issue was unfortunately cancelled and, far as I can tell, not resolicited.
p. 488 – Doctor Who T Is for TARDIS HC:

“D is for Dalek, the Doctor’s arch-foe
Who make us say ‘not THEM again, oh no'”

“R is for River, the Doctor’s Wife
Of whom we’ve seen enough in this life”
p. 489 – Marvel Spider-Man 1000 Dot-to-Dot Book:

“Wait…it’s his webbing again!? Gosh darn it!”
p. 493 – Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Mad Libs:

“‘I am [name of giant plant member of the Guardians]!’ shouted [name of giant plant member of the Guardians].”
p. 554 – Squeezeez Donald Trump 3-Inch Rubber Toy:

Features authentic dialogue! Oh, wait, that’s not supposed to be a word balloon.
p. 595 – Table Museum The Scream:

Look, if they’re going to be doing figurines of classic paintings, I’m gonna hold out for the full “The Garden of Earthly Delights” playset.
p. 604 – Star Trek Titans 2016 New York Comic-Con Figures:

“Captain, the gravity on this planet is much too strong. We must depart immediately.”

“Ladies, please…not all of me is squished down to 4 1/2 inches.”
p. 614 – Jurassic World Inflatable T-Rex Costume:

Order now to receive just in time for the prom!


Finally, the official Sterling Silver Comics store uniform.


This Is A Fetish for Somebody.
Marvel Previews p. 109 – Color Your Own Guardians of the Galaxy:

Good, because I’m coloring Drax a solid green, with purple clothes, just as God and Jim Starlin intended.
Marvel Previews p. 111 – Classified Prelude TPB:

Written by CLASSIFIED, penciled by CLASSIFIED, cover by CLASSIFIED, and by complete coincidence, my orders on this will be CLASSIFIED, too, until I actually know something about this thing. (And by “CLASSIFIED,” I mean “diddly-squat.”)

Progressive Ruin presents…the End of Civilization.

§ December 2nd, 2016 § Filed under End of Civilization § 15 Comments

The votes have been tallied, and the majority of eligible voters have decided that they don’t want to see a new End of Civilization post. Thus, here is a new End of Civilization post, so pull out your copy of the December 2016 Previews and follow along! C’mon, just give me a chance:

p. 36 – The Visitor How and Why He Stayed #1:

So this, the other Mignolaverse books, the new Hellboy graphic novel…that Mike Mignola guy should take more years off from making comics if they’re going to increase his output that much!
p. 51 – Slayer Relentless #2:

For some reason I had it in my mind that this was a Stryper comic from Dark Horse and that we’d eventually get the Stryper/Hellboy: To Hell with The Devil crossover book. Anyway, don’t tell the guys in Slayer I thought they were Stryper.
p.52 – Soupy Leaves Home TP:

In case you’re wondering how old I am, I’m exactly “I Immediately Thought This Was About Soupy Sales” years old. White Fang and Black Tooth, sadly waving their paws as Soupy Sales walks off into the indeterminate distance.
p. 110 – Batman ’66 Meets Wonder Woman ’77 #2:

So for the next series, let’s throw Superman ’78 into the mix. Or Superman ’52. Either/or. Or both, what the heck. And maybe Superman ’48, too. You can never have too many Supermen.
p. 121 – Direct Currents #2:

Finally, DC Comics has the rights to the greatest Zucker, Abrahams and Zucker film. (No, not Ruthless People, though that was pretty good, too.)
p. 177 – Vintage Romance Comic Book Covers Coloring Book:

“So what’s the best color for ‘silently pining over the handsomest boy in the school?” “I don’t know, is it the same color as ‘Repeating the Joke from the Serenity Coloring Book Entry?'”
p. 180 – Star Wars Newspaper Comics Vol. 1:

“Man oh man, Darth Vader sure hates Mondays! He’s hilarious!”
p. 263 – The Pink Panther Super Pink Special:

So I was totally ready to make a “that guy Pink’s carrying is totally naked, isn’t he?” joke, but apparently that seems to be a thing. And yes, the character’s name does appear to be “The White Man.” What can I tell you.
p. 269 – Doctor Stranger Things T-Shirt:

These things just sort of autogenerate out of the frothing loam of the internet, don’t they? Can loam even froth? I bet on the internet it can.
p. 280 – Fathom #1:

Remember when I used to make jokes about all the #1s Fathom and other Aspen books seemed to have, back when that was an unusual thing?
p. 294 – Planet of the Apes/Green Lantern #1:

So of course this means the Great Grape Ape is one of the Violet “Love” Lanterns:

I mean, that’s close enough, right? Besides, look what he’s doing to that van.
p. 333 – James Bond Felix Leiter #2:

So where’s our “Jaws” comic? Or “Eve Moneypenny, Secretary Spy?” Or the “Dr. Christmas Jones” comic, which might have to be an annual since people would assume it could only co[REST OF ENTRY REDACTED]
p. 356 – The Overstreet Guide to Cosplay:

Finally, I can find out what that guy dressed as Desert Storm Wolverine is worth in mint condition!
p. 357 – Deepak Chopra’s Beyond #1:

In case any of the writers get stuck for ideas, this website is like the Brian Eno’s Oblique Strategies of Deepak-isms.
p. 364 – Disney-Pixar Cars #2:

The exciting fun-filled stories leading up to Lightning McQueen’s horrifying death or maiming!
p. 365 – Disney-Pixar Toy Story #3:

When I first saw this out of the corner of my eye while flipping through Previews, I thought it read “Harvey Pekar’s Toy Story,” and what I wouldn’t give to see that. “Ah c’mon man, toys can’t talk, get real.” Also, I hope that remains the cover image.
p. 383 – The Smurfs The Village Behind the Wall GN:

I can’t believe Donald Smurf actually went through with it and put up that wall. You just know the Smurfs are the ones who are going to end up Smurfing for it.
p. 430 – Fukufuku Kitten Tales Volume 2 GN:

I can see absolutely no possibility of children finding inappropriate humor from the title of this book.
p. 448 – The Ages of the Justice League SC:

Well, Superman is 29, and Batman is 29, and Wonder Woman is…well, she’s supposed to be a lot older, right? Anyway, you shouldn’t ask her…it’s rude.
p. 516 – Hellraiser Pinhead Life-Size Bust:

I’ve probably gone to the “what would Grandma say?” well a few too many times about items like this, but, honestly, What Would Grandma Say? And I mean, like, Traditional Grandmas, from Norman Rockwell paintings, not Cool Rock ‘n’ Roll Grannies like I’m sure I’m going to hear about.
p. 517 – One-12 Collective Marvel Red Skull Action Figure:

Well, this should be a popular figure.
p. 598 – Pokemon Kanto Monopoly:

Do not pass Lavender Town, do not collect, um, Haunters, I guess? Look, I’m Wiki-ing up all this, I don’t know.
Marvel Previews p. 103 – Marvel Retro Cloth Punisher Action Figure Gift Set:

WHAT PUNISHER LOOKS LIKE IN THE COMICS: [huge and terrifying heavily muscled guy]

Marvel Previews p. 133 – Devil Dinosaur by Jack Kirby Poster:


People used to make fun of Devil Dinosaur way back when, and now here’s a poster you can buy. Good ol’ Kirby, he knew what was up even when we didn’t.

Progressive Ruin presents…the End of Civilization.

§ October 31st, 2016 § Filed under End of Civilization § 10 Comments

Get ready to cast your vote…for the End of Civilization, as represented by this, the November 2016 edition of Diamond Previews. Get out your copy, along with your sample ballots, and follow along, why don’cha. WARNING: contains one (1) reference to a plot development in a 30-year-old DC mini-series, and at least one (1) thing I’m going to get a drive-by “um, actually” over:

p. 59 – Will Eisner The Centennial Celebration 1917-2017:

Sure was nice of them to homage the classic scene from Frank Miller’s The Spirit on the cover:

p. 70 – The Manara Library Volume 1 Indian Summer and Other Stories TP:

Wait ’til you see the full-body portrait of Milo Manara that Frank Cho is providing for the variant!
p. 73 – Game of Thrones Hand of the Queen Pin:

“What will we do with all these leftover Wolverine keychains?”

“Here, let me see ’em.” [snaps off two claws] “There you are.”

p. 76 – Kamandi Challenge #1:

Looking forward to Albert Einstein’s appearance in issue #6 to get the story straightened out and back on track.
p. 115 – Batman ’66 Meets Wonder Woman ’77 #1:

p. 149 – DCTV Supergirl Action Figure:

Nice of them to include the “Pippi Longstocking” variant head.
p. 230 – A Land Called Tarot HC:

“You have to get our of here! Your land is haunted!”

Hmmm…nope, not quite the same feel, is it?
p. 309 – Belladonna #4 Costume Change 3 Cvr Set:

Well, um…you’re not shy, are you?
p. 311 – Jungle Fantasy Ivory #6 Luscious Variant:

I’m sensing a theme, here.
p. 454 – Tale As Old As Time: The Art and Making of Beauty and the Beast Updated Edition HC:

“As old as time” — or at least as old as the year 1740, when the original “Beauty and the Beast” story was first written and published. ALSO AS OLD AS TIME: pedants like me pointing that out.
p. 456 – Elvira Mistress of the Dark Photo Biography HC:

p. 474 – Batman “Skull Art” Black T-Shirt:

1980s Gotham kids had their own weird variant of the homemade “Suicidal Tendencies” t-shirt, didn’t they.
p. 481 – Watchmen Nite Owl Vinimate Vinyl Figure:

You know, the way the leg joints are done on these things, they might be able to do a nekkid Dr. Manhattan and just claim ignorance. “No, that’s not supposed to look like…you know, that’s just where the legs connect! We swear!”
p. 486 – Batman Classic TV Series Batphone Vinyl Bank:

No joke (other than having an actual bat-shaped phone might have raised questions in the Wayne household), but let’s just enjoy Alfred answering the actual non-bat-shaped batphone from the show:

EDIT: I’ve been informed that this is the phone from the Batmobile, which still seems wildly impractical. You know, as opposed to all the practical stuff from the Batman TV show.
p. 492 – Aliens Fossilized Space Jockey Foam Replica:

Not included: the vague disappointment upon finding out in Prometheus that this guy was probably just a big ol’ human-looking fella.
p. 492 – Predator Accessory Pack:

Also may be used to liven up the Barbie Dreamhouse. “What secret is Skipper keeping in her private room?”
p. 504 – Pop! The Walking Dead Vinyl Figure – Carl (Zombie Guts):

So eventually they’re going to do the “Carl (Shot in the Face)” variant, but will they just do the bandage over the eye, or will they just bore a hole right through one of those black shiny orbs?
p. 532 – Child Play’s Chucky Bishoujo Statue:

Why, this is the second-sexiest version of Chucky that I’ve ever seen.
p. 544 – The Bonsai 1 Plastic Model Kit:

“A 1/12 scale model of a bonsai tree. Well, sure, why not…even I can’t screw this up.”

[10 hours later, glue and plastic pieces everywhere]

p. 564 – Namco Arcade Machine Collection:

I’m ashamed to admit how long I looked into these things trying to find out if they were working mini-replicas. (I’m still not sure.)
p. 568 – DC Heroes “For Darkseid” Decal:

This is a great accompaniment to the New Gods line of “family sticker” window decals, with silhouetted images of Orion, Kalibak, Highfather…um, this sounded funnier in my head. A sticker featuring the outline of Metron in his chair just by himself in the rear window of a station wagon is still a good gag, right? …Right?
p. 575 – Suicide Squad Lapel Pin Sets:

“I’d like to buy the Ghost Rider pin, please.”

“But that’s not….”

“Boy, I sure do love Ghost Rider. Here, please take my money.”

“…Okay, thanks for shopping.”
Marvel Previews p. 5 – Monsters Unleashed #1 Teaser Variant Cover by Geof Darrow:


1. Have this playing along while you read this comic:

2. At long last, Marvel has finally adapted Bambi Meets Godzilla:

Marvel Previews p. 39 – Amazing Spider-Man #23:

“Peter, seriously, do you ever trim your nose hair?”

Progressive Ruin presents…the End of Civilization.

§ October 3rd, 2016 § Filed under End of Civilization § 11 Comments

Okay, okay, fine…after months of pressure, I’ve finally released my personal End of Civilization returns. I hope you all find what you’re looking for in there…and maybe you should have a copy of the October 2016 edition of Diamond Previews to help you follow all my earnings and losses:

p. 125 – Scooby-Doo, Where Are You? #76:


[Ghost of Shakespeare is tied up, Daphne pulls off mask]

Velma: “Jinkies! It’s Christopher Marlowe!”

Marlowe: “I would have won the day if not for thee
You kids who meddle, make my plans for naught.”

(NOTES: see here for the original Internet Scooby-Doo/Shakespeare mash-up, that of course I didn’t remember ’til after I wrote this.)
p. 151 – Batman The Animated Series Batman, Robin and Mutant Leader Action Figure 3-Pack:

“So Marvel’s got toy Hulk hands that kids can wear, right?”


“And they also did Thing hands, if I remember correctly.”

“You do.”

“Okay. So what we should do is produce….”

“Batman hands?”

“No…Mutant Leader nipples. Be just like your favorite villain from the Batman cartoon by wearing th–”

“Get out of my office.”
p. 152 – DC Icons Swamp Thing Action Figure:

“Hi, I’m Alec, and after being on the Weight-Beaters power diet plan for only six weeks, I’ve lost all sorts of excess poundage! And look at how much weight my friend Cranius shed after six months!”

“I no longer even have a stomach! Or pretty much any other internal organs!”

“That’s great, Cranius!”
p. 157 – Star Trek/Green Lantern Vol. 2 #1:

Featuring the Guardians of the Wold Newton Universe!
p. 271 – Cavewoman Monster Dreams One-Shot Massey Cover B:

Well, wouldn’t you know it, someone’s beat me to my Halloween costume.
p. 273 – Alexander Hamilton:

Why, that doesn’t look like the Hamilton I’m familiar with at all.
p. 278 – #TeamBetty Blue T-Shirt/#TeamVeronica Red T-Shirt:



p. 322 – Wonder Woman ’77 Meets The Bionic Woman #1:

Here’s hoping for the follow-up Ace the Bat-Hound/Run, Joe, Run, for which I suspect I’d be the only audience.
p. 410 – Doctor Who Tenth Doctor Year Three #1:

“I believe that this publisher should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of publishing a Doctor Who comic based on the Peter Cushing movies.” [cheers, applause]
p. 445 – The Pokemon Cookbook Easy and Fun Recipes:

“Why, this Lickitung tongue tastes terrible. Are you sure you cooked it right?”

“Look, if you don’t like it, we’ll have Pidgeot giblets tomorrow.”
p. 471 – Star Wars Galactic Maps An Illustrated Atlas of the Star Wars Universe:

“Well, look, here’s the bright center to the universe…and here’s Tatooine all the way over here. Huh, guess Luke was right.”
p. 509 – Batman Classic TV Series King Tut Resin Bust:

Frankly, I think all Batman merchandise has been leading up to this. What home doesn’t need a statue of Victor Buono, to watch over your household and bring you good luck?
p. 520 – Alien Derelict Ship Statue:

The World’s Richest Alien fan is buying a few dozen of these for the most expensive game of horseshoes ever.
p. 536 – Friday the 13th Part 5 Jason Mask Prop Replica:

“Can’t…can’t you just go the sporting equipment store and…?”

“MOM. This is the OFFICIAL replica. As seen in Friday the 13th. Part FIVE. Please do NOT waste my time with nonsense.”
p. 583 – Dragonball Z Figure-Rise Mechanics Saitan Space Pod Model Kit:

I’m not sure I’m into this Mork and Mindy reboot.
p. 613 – Marvel Heroes The Infinity Gauntlet Cookie Jar:

MOM: “Okay, who’s been sneaking cookies out of the Marvel Heroes The Infinity Gauntlet Cookie Jar?”

BILLY: “Not me!”

DOLLY: “Not me!”

THANOS: “Fools taking up arms against omnipotence. They rush head-on into Armageddon. So I shall provide them with a most glorious doomsday! The heavens will run red with blood. But in the end, as always, Thanos will have his cookies.”
p. 616 – Star Wars Darth Vader Briefcase:

“The briefcase Darth Vader carries to meetings with his officers” reads the actual solicitation, so they’ve already beaten me to the obvious joke. But here’s hoping someone out there is working on a Special Special Edition of the original trilogy and can CGI some briefcases in there.
p. 618 – Star Wars Death Star Schematics Mighty Wallet:

So this is how the Rebels got the plans out without any apparent email or anything in the Star Wars universe. They just folded them up into novelty wallets and Imperial security didn’t even give ’em a second glance! “You crazy kids and your wacky, mixed-up wallets, get on out of here!” …Oh, SPOILERS for Star Wars: Rogue One, by the way.
p. 621 – Batman The Animated Series Almost Got ‘im Card Game:

Well, if we’re basing games on single episodes of the Batman cartoons, then let’s have one based on the greatest episode:

p. 624 – Magic the Gathering TCG Conspiracy Take the Crown Booster Packs:

“Atogs are putting mind-numbing chemicals in our water supply.”

“…Wait, what?”

“The Brothers’ War was a false flag operation.”

“Now hold on….”


“Leeeeet me just stop you right there.”
Marvel Previews p. 95 – Star Wars Classified #1 & #2:


“An all-new, top-secret ongoing Star Wars series begins this December…”

…please be Lobot please be Lobot please be Lobot….
Marvel Previews p. 106 – Star Wars Box Set Slipcase:

“Yup, it’s collecting all the major Star Wars comics. Episodes IV-VI, the latest Episode VII, Shattered Empire, the first Darth Vader hardcover….”

“And Episodes I-III, right? Right?”

“Episodes IV-VI, and Episode VII, and that Darth Vader book, and Shattered Empire….”

And I-III, yes?”

Shattered Empire for sure, Episodes IV-VI….”
Marvel Previews p.134 – Marvelman Classic Vol. 1 TPB:

Marvel…who, again? This character seems familiar, but I just can’t place him. Maybe they should do a regular comic with this guy or something.

Progressive Ruin presents…the End of Civilization.

§ September 5th, 2016 § Filed under End of Civilization § 10 Comments

Yup, that’s me, sitting here with the September 2016 edition of Diamond Previews. You’re probably wondering how I got into this situation. Well, follow along with me in your own copy of Previews and let’s find out together, shall we?

p. 106 – Superman #10:

I know the big joke ever since this cover was released was that everyone thought they looked like they were about to kiss, but it looks more to me like they’re smelling each other.

“Say, Superman, what is that wonderful scent you’re wearing?”

“You smell like eggs, Superboy.”
p. 149 – Batman the Animated Series Expressions Pack:

Kind of hope they do one of these for the regular DC Universe Batman…a half-dozen slightly different scowling faces, and one with a sardonic grin. Also, turns out the Question Expressions Pack isn’t quite so exciting.
p. 180 – Sachs & Violens TPB:

Say, remember when Peter David and Todd McFarlane had that spat in the comics press a long time ago, with David criticizing McFarlane about somethin’ or other, and McFarlane responded with a comics sales chart showing Spawn near the top, and David’s Sachs & Violens way below?

Just sayin’ there’s probably not so much of a difference now.
p. 189 – John Byrne’s Stowaway to the Stars: A Graphic Album to Color:

Hmm…this one character appears to be a Latina. Which color should I use for her hair…which one….
p. 225 – Spawn #269:

The solicitation description reads, in its entirety, “The SPAWN saga continues!” Creative team is “Todd McFarlane & Friends,” with Covers A and B both featuring art by “To Be Determined.” Oh no, how am I ever going to decide what orders to place on this comic without the necessary relevant information? [enters same number of copies I’ve ordered for Spawn for the last several years]
p. 238 – The Walking Dead Take It Like A Champ T-Shirt:

Good thing everyone everywhere is absolutely 100% familiar with The Walking Dead in all its forms and thus there’s no chance of anybody ever misconstruing this t-shirt.
p. 238 – The Walking Dead Lucille 34″ Replica Bat:

Celebrate and reminisce about the brutal bludgeoning-to-death of [REDACTED] in the comics and, I’m guessing, Abraham in the forthcoming season premiere, with this lovely souvenir keepsake! Carry it around with you while wearing your “Take It Like A Champ” t-shirt so everyone knows of your love for The Walking Dead!
p. 279 – Shark Trek T-Shirt:


Was going to make fun, but I’d be totally for a Captain Kirk vs. Space Sharks movie. Or just rebooting the franchise with the entire Enterprise crew as sharks. Either or.
p. 334 – Vampirella Bottle Opener:

Now if were making these, they would be in the shape of Vampirella’s head, and her wide-open mouth is where you’d insert the top of the bottle, hooking the fangs beneath the edge of the cap. And then I’d just laugh and laugh and laugh.
p. 362 – The Overstreet Guide to Collecting Video Games SC:

So I was totally going to make a joke about “I bet they’re going to start slabbing video games CGC-style now, too!” and then I looked it up to see if this actually was happening, and, uh, I’ll just be over here playing my unslabbed copy of Turmoil on my Atari 2600 if you need me.
p. 364 – The Overstreet Guide to Collecting Movie Posters SC:

“I wonder what my original Revenge of the Jedi poster is worth? Let me look it up.”

[flips through book, finds entry that reads “You don’t have the original, you probably got ripped off.”]
p. 436 – Faith #5:

“…And anyway, Hillary, I sure hope you like comic books.”

“Uh, Barack? What do you mean by that?”

“Oh, you’ll see. You’ll see.”
p. 471 – Doctor Who The Twelve Doctors of Christmas HC:

On the Twelfth Day of Christmas, my companion gave to me…
12 sonic sunglasses
11 bowties
10 overcoats
9 leather jackets
8 TV movies
7 Panama hats
6 too many trial episodes
4 Jelly Babies
3 polarity reversals
2 recorders
and 1 grand daugh-ter…!
p. 476 – Inside the Magic: The Making of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them HC:

J.K. Rowling, five years from now: “Oh, I forgot to mention, one of the beasts was secretly a robot.” “That one beast I said was blue-colored? Actually green.” “All the beasts had postal boxes in Fairfax, VA…did I not mention that? Oh, silly me.”
p. 491 – Star Wars “It’s A Trap” Sky Blue Heather T-Shirt:

There is likely a worrying percentage of customers for this shirt who only know it from online shenanigans, and have no clue it’s from a movie. At least, that’s what I’m assuming, since I’m a cranky old Original Star Wars Fan from 1977, Thank You.
p. 500 – Suicide Squad The Joker Sublimated Premium Crew Socks:

Sure, you may laugh, but I’ll have you know Jared Leto spent weeks wrapping himself around people’s feet and occasionally getting lost in the wash to prepare for this role.
p. 522 – Tokidoki X Hello Kitty Kittypatra Vinyl Figure:

Comes with just the most adorable asp!
p. 601 – Batman and Wonder Woman Ceramic Sculpted Mugs:


Part of the “DC Comics Tribute to Brain Surgery” line.
p. 602 – The Joker Steering Wheel Cover:

Sure, you may laugh, but I’ll have you know Jared Leto spent weeks clinging to a steering wh…huh? I already did this gag? …Sigh, fine.
p. 603 – Superman 15-Ounce Double Wall Travel Tumbler:

I was wondering when they’d get around to merchandising this image:

Progressive Ruin presents…the End of Civilization.

§ August 1st, 2016 § Filed under End of Civilization § 14 Comments

The End of Civilization is staring us right in the eyes, friends, and you get to stare right back into that abyss with the latest issue of Previews! Grab your copy (the August 2016 edition) and follow along, why don’cha?

p. 44 – Serenity: No Power in the ‘Verse #1:

Man, musical comics are really hard to do, so how are they going to pull this…oh, it’s short for “universe.” Never mind.
p. 54 – Muhammad Ali HC:

I know this is supposed to cover his life as a whole, but it’d be a shame to have his team-up with Superman compressed to just a few pages.
p. 80 – Cave Carson Has A Cybernetic Eye #1:

“Oh yeah? Cybernetic lip, cybernetic lip!”
p. 122 – He-Man/Thundercats #1:

He-Man’s gonna have a lot of ‘splaining to do to the Thundercats regarding the whole “Cringer” situation.
p. 284 – Archie Meets The Ramones #1:

Okay, every single time something like this comes up I always make a joke like “and then they should team up with G.G. Allin!” which is exactly what I said when this series was originally announced.

So let me change my reference: boy, I sure hope the Archies meet Throbbing Gristle next! “IN THIS ISSUE, JUGHEAD MEETS THE HAMBURGER LADY!”
p. 302 – Big Trouble in Little China/Escape from New York #1:


p. 338 – Betty Boop #1:


I freely admit I did not know I needed a Howard Chaykin-drawn Betty Boop drawing until I saw it in this Previews.
p. 485 – Super Mario Adventures GN:


This is the weirdest variation on the old “two brothers on opposite sides in the Civil War” trope that I’ve ever read.
p. 508 – Wonder Woman Coloring Book SC:


“So what color should her panties be?”

p. 509 – Home Alone The Authorized Coloring Book SC:


At last, my days of coloring in unauthorized Home Alone coloring books are over.
p. 509 – 101 Horror Movies You Must See Before You Die:


Oddly enough, one of the movies listed is actually titled 101 Horror Movies You Must See Before You Die.
p. 526 – “For Darkseid” Red Heather T-Shirt:


And also “FOR ZARDOZ!”
p. 630 – Star Trek Pizza Cutter:


Obviously based on that scene from “Who Mourns for Adonais” when Apollo grabs the Enterprise with his giant projected hand and uses it to cut his godly-sized pizza.
p. 643 – Howard the Duck Molded Head Mug:


Either the greatest piece of Marvel Comics merchandise of all time, or the one artifact by which future civilizations will pass their harshest judgement.

Progressive Ruin presents…the End of Civilization.

§ July 4th, 2016 § Filed under End of Civilization § 17 Comments

The End of Civilization is closer than ever, friends, and there’s no greater tome of portent than this, the July 2016 edition of Diamond Previews! Grab your copy and follow along, if you think your heart can stand it! Also, yes, I know there’s an easier way to do that Space Invaders thing…anyway, HERE WE GO:

p. 62 – Avatar The Last Airbender Coloring Book TP:

“Here, Little Billy, I even bought you some extra blue crayons since I know you’re going to need them.”

“THAT’S A DIFFERENT AV — sigh, thanks Aunt Millie.”
p. 63 – Serenity Adult Coloring Book TP:

“What color is ‘eternal longing for a thing that will never return?'”


“Okay, thanks.”
p. 98 – All-Star Batman #2:

At long last! The Greatest Batman Epic of Our Time finally continues! None of you believed, but only I kept the faith that Miller and Lee would return to this grand tale! HA! IN YOUR FACES, SUCKERS.

[EDITOR’S NOTE: nobody tell Mike. He doesn’t know yet.]
p. 108 – The Flash #6:

Okay, having a speedster villain named “Godspeed” is pretty great. But if someone named “Black Emperor” shows up….
p. 130 – Batman ’66 Meets Steed and Mrs. Peel #3:

please please please “Batman ’66 Visits Gilligan’s Island” next please please
p. 137 – Goodnight Batcave HC:


You know, if they’re going to be doing Batman-themed children’s book parodies, well….

p. 139 – Watchmen Noir HC:

C’mon, just call it the “Watchmen Coloring Book,” you know you want to.
p. 148 – Supergirl Book One TP:


CUSTOMER: “So my daughter really likes the Supergirl TV show…will she like this book?”

ME: “Um, well, this Supergirl is actually a shape-changing artificial being from a parallel universe who merges with a human woman, and then there’s this whole angel thing….”

CUSTOMER: [blank stare]

ME: “Yeah, it’ll be fine.”

[PLEASE NOTE: the previous dialogue was simply a fictional exaggeration and not reflective of my actual in-store behavior. At least, not for another decade or two.]
p. 197 – Strawberry Shortcake #6 Scented Variant:

“And now, My Little Pony scented variants!”

p. 237 – Snotgirl #3:

So, a boy, then?

(Look, I’ve had that stupid joke rattling around in my head for months.)
p. 279 – Irwin Allen’s Lost in Space #5:

Surely with at least three versions of Lost in Space rattling around (what with the upcoming Netflix revival) we’re due for some kind of “Crisis of Infinite Jupiter 2s” or something. Actually, I’m still waiting for Classic Trek vs. New Trek thing…”Prime Universe Vs. The Kelvin Timeline,” if you’re nasty nerdy. (EDIT: I’m told Old Vs. New Trek is already a thing in the comics. I SAT TOO LONG ON THIS JOKE.)
p. 286 – Trump Vs. Clinton Coloring Book:

NO MATTER WHO WINS, WE LOSE…well, okay, more one than the other, but still.
p. 287 – Major League Badass T-Shirt:

Please enjoy this t-shirt of a Generic Shaggy-Haired Fella What Carries What Could Be Just Any Crossbow, and Not Any Particular One, No, Really, I Have No Idea What You’re Talking About.
p. 328 – Tarot Witch of the Black Rose #100:

Number one hundred!? That’s a lot of haunted vaginas. In fact, haunted vaginas for everyone!

p. 336 – Art of Atari HC:

NOT INCLUDED: beautiful watercolor painting of me frying my 2600 so I could get two shots at a time in Space Invaders.
p. 351 – Battlestar Galactica #2 Subscription Variant:

Ladies and gentlemen…the best one yet of these action figure variant covers.
p. 362 – Barack the Barbarian GN:

“Ah, once I’m out of office, maybe they’ll stop making comics about me.”

PREVIEWS JUNE 2017: “Retired Barack Versus Predator #1”

p. 501 – Doctor Who A History of Humankind, The Doctor’s Official Guide HC:

p. 506 – Ghostbusters 2016 Little Golden Book:

Oh, great, here come people complaining about women ruining their children’s books, too.
p. 508 – Everything I Need to Know I Learned from a Star Wars Little Golden Book:

“Um…open heart surgery?”

“Page 17.”

“How to file quarterly sales taxes?”

“Page 113.”

“Ballroom dancing?”

“Page 484.”

“This is one hell of a long Little Golden Book.”

“Contains all knowledge it does, yes? Hee hee hee!”
p. 554 – Batman & Robin Clooney Panther Cowl Replica:

Had literally no idea merchandising from the Clooney Batman was still a thing. Is there enough demand for that very specific version of the Bat-cowl to…oh, what am I even saying.
p. 569 – Pop! Aliens Alien Queen 6-Inch Vinyl Figure:

Man, that alien queen from Aliens, there’s no way they could make that more terrif–GAH

p. 576 – Alfred Hitchcock 1/6 Scale Collectible Figure:

Hitchcock figure making mysterious cameos in other action figure playsets: “hey, who’s that behind the Mission to Gamma VI set?” “BILLY, GET YOUR HITCHCOCK FIGURE OUT OF HERE!”
p. 601 – Batman V Superman Batman Nendoroid Justice Edition:

Even the most outspoken of Batman V Superman haters will love our newest version of the film, where every appearance of Ben Affleck has been replaced with this cutie pie.
p. 604 – Gundam Unicorn GFFMC Unicorn Gundam “Final Battle” Figure:

Thundercleese looks different from how I remember.
p. 609 – Pharrell Williams Real Action Hero:

This is the worst Freddy Krueger cosplay I have ever seen.
p. 624 – Movie Icons The Godfather Vito Corleone 7-Inch Action Figure:

Alternate Orange Peel Head not included.
p. 632 – Cthulhu Molded Mug:

“That is not dead which can eternal lie, and with strange aeons even death may die…before my first cup of coffee! Am I right, Augie?”

“I’ve asked you before not to talk to me, Howard.”
Marvel Previews p. 105 – Color Your Own Star Wars:

Look, I already did that with markers in my old treasury editions because the lightsabers were the wrong color, so, got that taken care of, thanks.

Progressive Ruin presents, at long last…the End of Civilization.

§ February 29th, 2016 § Filed under End of Civilization § 12 Comments

So…nice civilization you’ve got here. Shame if something…happened to it. Say, why don’t you follow along with me in your March 2016 edition of Diamond Previews before something…unfortunate should occur:

p. 76 – Snoopy Qee Mystery Box Series:

Revealed at last: the hideous results of the unspeakable experiments at the Daisy Hill Puppy Farm.
p. 80 – Scooby Apocalypse #1:

Sure, you’re all makin’ fun of this now, but once Scrappy-Doo is revealed as the leader of Bartertown, you’ll all come crawling back.
p. 152 – Wonder Woman Action Figure 3-Pack:

You’re gonna do a three-pack of Wonder Woman figures and you don’t do the classic Wonder Tot/Wonder Girl/Wonder Woman team-up?

I don’t even know, DC…I don’t even know.
p. 422 – Batman Facts and Stats from the Classic TV Show HC:

Looking forward to the comparison chart showing “Number of Heart Palpitations Caused by Reminding Batman Fans of This TV Show Prior to, Say, The Year 2000 VERSUS After About That Point.”
p. 451 – Scumbag Loser Omnibus GN:

You know, at this rate I’m not going to have any potential titles left for my eventual autobiography.
p. 460 – 100 Things Superman Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die:

Here’s hoping “actually read a Superman comic” is somewhere in there.
p. 463 – Superman Classic: Pranking News SC:

I’d almost forgotten about the Mxyzptlk New 52 redesign. “Fievel Goes to the Fifth Dimension,” I guess.
p. 464 – Doctor Who Mad Libs:

“It’s [ADJECTIVE] on the [LOCATION]!” “Quickly, [VERB] the [NOUN] of the neutron [NOUN]!” “Oh for [DEITY]’s sake, not [NAME OF COMPANION] again.”
p. 468 – Star Trek What Would Captain Kirk Do? SC:

Wait? “What would Captain Kirk do?” Find out exactly what he did by reading this book solicited on page 422 of this very issue of Previews!

p. 479 – Team Cap T-Shirt:

I think we can all admit now that we really wanted Bella to hook up with Captain America and not that vampire or werewolf or whatever.
p. 494 – Marvel Minimates Series 67 Civil War 2-Packs Asst.:

I see Cap and Iron Man already have the pre-distressed “accidentally left in the sandbox and then dug up a couple of years later” look to them. Why, in my day, we had to do that the hard way. You kids today have got it too easy.
p. 508 – Batman V Superman Super Deformed Plushies:

p. 521 – Pixel The Matrix 4-Pack:

At last, the perfect ice-breaker for conversations with your teenage relatives, which will usually start with them asking “…What are those? Is that based on some old movie or video game or something?” before they wander off playing with some new tech something-or-other you don’t understand and you feel that creak in your bones, surely that creak’s not getting stronger and anyway ha ha I’m just kidding, but seriously, death comes for us all. …Thanks for shopping.
p. 526 – Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Raphael 1/6-Scale Collectible Figure:

Oh, it’s his tail.
p. 532 – Dragonball Super Sculture Spirit Bomb Figures:


Progressive Ruin presents…the End of Civilization.

§ July 27th, 2015 § Filed under End of Civilization § 9 Comments

What? Time for one of these again? Say it ain’t so…but it is! It is! The End of Civilization waits for no man, and we can see what’s barreling right down the tracks at us by getting our your copy of the August 2015 Diamond Previews and following along! I apologize ahead of time for my overlooking such things as “publishing lead times” for the sake of a joke, as well as any tummy upset that may occur during, um, a couple of the entries:

p. 78 – Superman Lois & Clark #1:

Hey, finally we get a spin-off from the Convergence event, and…huh, it’s not based on the Shazam! comic that everyone was excited about. That’s funny, you’d think you’d want to build on that buzz, but, well, this will probably be good, too.
p. 79 – Telos #1:

Oh, okay, here’s a Convergence spin-off featuring…um, I don’t see the Shazam! characters anywhere. That’s strange.
p. 80 – Titans Hunt #1:

Ah, here we go, Captain Marvel’s probably in there some…where…there’s Batman, and Starfire, and…huh.
p. 144-5 -Batman V Superman Dawn of Justice Batman and Superman Statues:


“No, but I have this support bar that makes me look like I’m flying! You should try yours…oh, you don’t have one? So sad!”

p. 324 – Grumpy Cat #1:

“We must prevent Grumpy Cat and Hello Kitty from ever touching…or the resultant matter/anti-matter explosion will destroy the universe!”

Anyway, just working on my pitch for the eventual team-up book. Don’t none of you bastards steal my idea.
p. 408 – The Comic Story of Beer GN:

Missed opportunity to have a special “water ring damaged” variant.
p. 423 – Dreamworks Classics Digest Vol. 2:

Alas, not a “team-up” book where Po just beats the tar out of Shrek. Someday, my friends…someday.
p. 467 – Make Comics Like the Pros SC:

Presumably includes a special chapter on how to deal with a bunch of ungrateful online jerks who don’t appreciate your hard work and mock you in, say, website posts.
p. 468 – 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die HC and 1001 TV Shows You Must Watch Before You Die HC:

“Ah HA! If I never watch the 1001st movie or TV show, I will never die!”

“But Mike, the 1001st movie is Frank Miller’s The Spirit II and the 1001st TV show is an unaired episode of Doctor Doctor!”

“Well…who wants to live forever? DIIIIVE”
p. 473 – The Walking Dead The Pop-Up Book HC:

You remember those Al Jaffee drawings from Mad where a character vomits, and there’s just this huge massive jet emitting from the poor character’s mouth, filled with, like, bones and stuff? I sorta picture the same jet of bones ‘n’ junk shooting out of this book when you open it.
p. 521 – Star Wars Kitchen Storage Set:

Nobody enjoys Droid Constipation Repair duty.
p. 525 – Star Wars Jedi Hooded Robe:

That is one tall Jawa…
p. 525 – Star Wars Chewbacca Fleece Robe:

…and here he is in his Wookiee cosplay. “Uti-GRAWRG!”
Marvel Previews p. 42 – What If? Infinity – Thanos #1:

The origin of Thanos’s villainy, revealed at last: everybody laughed at his convention costumes. Captain America, Sub-Mariner, Cloud…nobody appreciated his work.

…Now you’re probably picturing Thanos in Namor’s little green Speedos. You’re welcome.

Progressive Ruin presents…the End of Civilization.

§ June 29th, 2015 § Filed under End of Civilization § 8 Comments

Psst. Hey. Hey, you. Stop lookin’ around yourself like that, I’m talkin’ to you. Anyways, you know what I got here? Yeah, you know what this is. This is the good stuff. This is that End of Civilization you’ve been hearin’ all the other kids yakkin’ about. Here, take this July 2015 edition of the Diamond Previews and check it out. Yeah, it’s free. The first one’s always free:

p. 76 – BPRD Neon Sign:

“Uh…is that a long-necked bunny with a top hat and a monocle?”

“Oh, come now, you’re just stretching for a joke at this point.”

“Okay…uh, it’s Señor Wences with a lollipop, and…he’s running really fast, making those speedlines kind of at the top, there.”

“Señor Wences. Really.”
p. 150 – DC Comics Icons Harley Quinn Statue:

5200 what? 5200 separate Harley Quinn statue designs? “Here’s one of her playing badminton! Here’s one of her doing her taxes! Add on that new wing to the house, here comes a full set of her dressed as every Green Lantern!”

…There seem to be a lot of Harley Quinn statues, is what I’m saying.
p. 156 – Star Wars Artifact Edition HC:

Yup, going back to the comic’s original art firmly establishes that Camie shot Fixer first.
p. 165 – Star Trek New Visions The Survival Equation:

p. 186 – From Hell & The From Hell Companion Slipcase:

Finally, these two books are conveniently stored in one handy slipcase so you can continue to enjoy that one volume again and again.
p. 218 – Science Is The New Rock ‘n’ Roll:

…In that an uncomfortable number of parents think science is also from the devil? Or that Neil deGrasse Tyson once played a flaming guitar with his tongue before smashing it onstage? Or that if you play the Second Law of Thermodynamics backwards, you hear a mysterious warbling voice intoning “GOD DID IT?”
p. 268-9 – Jughead #1:

New interpretations of the Archie gang are beginning to pile up…we’re going to see some kind of “Crisis of Infinite Archies” or “Secret Archie Wars” or some darned thing pretty soon. New Look Archie versus The New Archies, “Death of Archie” Archies vs. To Riverdale and Back Again Archies — you know, like that.

Yeah, I’d totally buy that.
p. 318 – Aliens/Vampirella #1:

DO NOT REVEAL THE SHOCKING ENDING [the Alien Queen emerges from the shadows, wearing Vampi’s costume — unspeakable desires awaken across America].
p. 451 – The Ages of Iron Man SC:

Let’s see…Silver, Bronze, Copper…nope, no iron. Sorry.
p. 458 – The Big Bang Theory Kit:

Not pictured: a “Yes, This Store Is Just Like The Big Bang Theory” t-shirt for comic shop owners.
p. 458 – Ghostbusters The Ultimate Visual History HC:

A whole chapter devoted to close-ups of bro ‘Busters fans crying after finding out just how they’re getting Ghostbusters 3 finally? Delicious.
p. 478 – Swamp Thing “Flip Mask” Black T-Shirt:

Will be wearing this all day, every day at the shop. Just me, shirt pulled up over my head, silently standing behind the counter. Occasionally I’ll shift slightly in your direction if you speak or make a sound.
p. 495 – Back to the Future Monopoly Board Game:

Do not pass GO, do not make like a tree and get out of here.
p. 520 – Pop! Peanuts Vinyl Figures:

Oh, good, I was wondering when Peanuts Zombies would hit the shelves.
p. 528 – Legend of Zelda Link Deluxe Adult Kit:

“GASP! Master gave Dobby a windsock!”

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