Mike’s emo post.

§ June 9th, 2006 § Filed under Uncategorized Comments Off on Mike’s emo post.

So for some reason, I had a bit of a weblogging malaise over the last couple of days. I’d sit there, the blank Blogger text box staring at me, and I’d just not feel the urge to write. Part of it may be attributable to the recent “absorption” of some group ‘blogs by larger comic news sites. Several posts a day, on several topics, by many good writers…all the news and all the reviews you could possibly want, with large audiences fed into them by their respective host sites. I certainly hope this doesn’t come across as any sort of ill will against Comics Should Be Good at Comic Book Resources or Blog@Newsarama (formerly “The Great Curve”), both of which provide fine and entertaining reading. I just…well, even though I know I really shouldn’t have felt this way, I couldn’t help but feel that my site was just a tad on the redundant side. I mean, what can my site offer that these sites don’t already provide?

And then, just like that, my malaise vanished, as I realized what it was that my site has that those other sites don’t.

My site has me.

Well, duh. And I don’t mean “my site has me” in an “I’m the greatest, yay me” kind of way. I mean that in a “well, I think my point of view is still worth something, and it’s not exactly duplicated by anyone else…so maybe my site isn’t that redundant after all.”

And I’m getting a few thousand people visiting my site every day, and they can’t all be Google hits from people looking for nekkid pictures of Smallville actresses, so there’s at least a few of you out there who still enjoying my goofy ramblings.

So, thank you for reading, and thank you for putting up with my occasional moody spells. I don’t plan on going anywhere. Well, unless some much larger site decides to buy me out. (C’mon, Dietcoke.com…surely you guys need a comic ‘blog!)

(And if you don’t like me or my weblog, there’s always this site for your Mike-disliking needs.)

Enough weepy whining…let’s whip into a couple of the new books that came out this week:

Wonder Woman #1 – The much ballyhooed, though strangely mysterious (given the lack of info we had about it ahead of time) debut of the Amazon’s newest series is finally out, and…well, it’s certainly a gorgeous looking book. Terry and Rachel Dodson draw a mean comic, but the story, by Allan Heinberg…don’t get me wrong, it was fine, it sets up the new storyline well, but the book just felt like it took about two minutes to read. Maybe it’s just a result of my normal fast-paced reading, but when I got to the last page my immediate thought was “that’s it?”

Punisher #34 – This cover has me looking forward to this situation: kids grabbing the comic off the shelf to see just what is being censored, and giggling when they find out that it’s a word that they’ve heard plenty of times on TV and from their parents, only now it’s funny because they’re seeing it in a comic book. Ah, just kiddin’, sorta. It’s hard to top throwing a “CENSORED” on the cover to get people’s attention, though.

Tag #1 – Honestly, the last thing in the world I want to see is yet another zombie comic. I mean, what’s wrong with having a mummy comic once in a while? When will it be the Mummy’s time to shine? Well, ignore all that, since Boom! Studios, along with Keith Giffen and Kody Chamberlain, has released the first issue of Tag, which, believe it or not, finds another tack to take with the zombie genre. The hero, Mitch, gets “tagged” by a horribly-decomposed zombie, and in short order, discovers that he too is now dead and beginning to rot. A nice twist is having Mitch’s only ally in his search to discover what happened to him be the girlfriend with whom he was in the process of breaking up. It’s a nightmarish situation, competently and breezily conveyed by Chamberlain’s moody art and Giffen’s natural and witty dialogue. A particularly disturbing element is…well, have you ever become “aware” of your breathing? Something that’s normally an automatic function, and then all of a sudden you’re aware of the effort you’re putting into your breathing, and then, for a few brief moments, you feel like you have to put a conscious effort into filling your lungs. That comes into play in this comic, and it’s made even more horrifying in that while in the real world, that feeling eventually goes away. For someone on his way to becoming a zombie…well, it’s a slightly more disturbing story….

Star Wars: Legacy #0 – All of Dark Horse Comics’ other 25-cent “#0” comics have been actual comics…panels, word balloons, gutters, the works. We fully expected Star Wars: Legacy #0 to be the same…in fact, there’s nothing in the original solicitation info to indicate that would be anything otherwise. Guess what? It ain’t. It’s several pages of images of characters, weapons, buildings and the like, accompanied by brief text descriptions. It’s a handbook, not a comic. Luckily, Star Wars fans generally like this sort of thing, so hasn’t really impacted sales so far, but as someone who was intrigued by the series’ premise (taking place over a century after the events of Return of the Jedi), I was disappointed to not get any actual story in this book. But what the heck, it’s only a quarter. I’ll live.

Superman Returns #1: Krypton to Earth – We’ve already sold out of this, and we thought we ordered high. As a comic…well, it expands a bit on the Krypton sequences from Superman: The Movie, but doesn’t really give us anything too new or surprising.

Annihilation Silver Surfer #3 – I’m not reading this, but I did flip through this issue and spotted what Dave would call a “F@*K YEAH!” moment, as the end of the book features a pretty kick-ass return to a previous status quo for a particular character who may or may not be the titular star of the book. Yeah, I’m real subtle. Believe you me, it was a hard decision to not put a huge image of the page in question right here in place of this semi-vague description.

Luba’s Comics & Stories #8 – You know how lucky you are that you’re getting comics on a regular basis from Gilbert Hernandez? Maybe it’s a bit of a steep learning curve trying to untangle all the characters’ relations to each other, but it’s worth the trouble. Fine cartooning, finer writing.

Action Philosophers V. 1: Giant Sized Thing trade paperback – That “Plato SMASH!” on the cover busts me up. Funny comic, to boot.

Power Girl trade paperback – Almost tempted to buy this, just to get the three issue Showcase story from the ’70s on paper that isn’t entirely lousy.

Superman/Doomsday Omnibus trade paperback – This thing is huge, it’s in color, and it’s only $19.99. I’d like to see DC’s Showcase books in this format, though it’s my guess the recoloring process would be cost-prohibitive. Oh, well. Maybe we’ll get more modern comics in this format (like the Our Worlds at War that also came out this week, for $5 more). My primary fear was that the pages on these books would be exactly one micron thick, but the paper stock is…well, not top drawer, but good enough. Feels sturdy, holds color…that’s plenty.

A couple random recent store things:

  • Went through a person’s collection that he was selling, and many of the books were water-damaged. Not water-damaged as in the comics had been exposed to water at some point, and show some staining. They were water-damaged as in the bags the fellow carried the comics into the store with were still wet. Eeeeewwwwww.
  • Trying to explain to a customer the price of plastic bags:

    Me: “If you buy the bags singly, they’re 6 cents each. If you buy them in packages of 100, they’re a penny cheaper per bag, for a total of $5.00.”

    Customer: “You’re making that up.”

    Well, yes, I suppose that’s technically true…we had to make up the retail prices at some point, I suppose. But the accusation was that I just made up that price on the spot, just for her…because no one had ever offered quantity discounts before, I guess.

We have that Wonder Woman movie looming on the horizon, and I haven’t been following any of the discussion on this project, aside from the occasional “this actress isn’t playing Wonder Woman” news story. As such, I don’t know if anyone has brought up this particular topic:

I’m wondering if this costume will fly with today’s audiences. (And yes, before you get technical on me, I know her emblem has changed since then.) The costume worked then because 1) it’s being worn by Lynda Carter…everyone loves the Lynda Carter; and 2) it was the 1970s…that costume wasn’t too far off from what some people were actually wearing.

On the other hand, it’s probably one of the most recognizable superhero costumes in the world…people will most likely cut it some slack, just out of familiarity. To be sure, people would be disappointed if the costume didn’t appear.

The Wonder Woman comics lately have been pretty good about giving us costume variations that don’t look like patriotic swimsuits, while still evoking the original outfit, so maybe that’s what we’ll get in the film, presuming it actually happens.

I would say that whatever they cook up, it can’t be any worse than this costume, but I’d rather not tempt fate.

Anyway, as long as I’m on the topic, and as a reward for slogging through this longwinded post of mine, here’s a fantastic Wonder Woman compilation video I stole from pal Dorian (who in turn stole it from Center of Gravitas). Enjoy, won’t you?

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