"…This is comic book boy saying ‘Take care!’"

§ April 19th, 2007 § Filed under Uncategorized Comments Off on "…This is comic book boy saying ‘Take care!’"

New funnybooks:

Swamp Thing reference in Justice League of America #8. UPDATE YOUR CHECKLISTS.

Marvel Adventures: Avengers #12, featuring “Ego the Loving Planet” is completely insane and wonderful. Ego is macking on the Earth, the Avengers are trying to prevent this love connection, and…it’s all really inappropriate and very funny.

It would take a lot to make me not want to read a Metal Men comic (I even read this series, which was terrible), but Superman/Batman #34, guest-starring said Metal Men, made me finally drop the series. Just looked so dreary and unpleasant.

DC’s four-issue-mini-in-one-week World War III is entirely unnecessary, and not really very good. Lots of awkward set-ups and repositionings of characters so that they’ll be in the states that they were in at the beginning of the whole post-Infinite Crisis “One Year Later” thing. And making a mopey Martian Manhunter the framework for the story, with the whole “I’ll never belong among the humans” back-of-hand-to-forehead despair that we’ve all seen before…yeah, didn’t really do anything for me.

Oddly, the new issue of 52, kicking off (and, er, wrapping up) the “World War III” event was actually not bad. And a damned sight more concise about it.

(Speaking of WWIII, I had one customer ask why we didn’t just bundle the four issues together, since that’s how everyone was going to buy it. True, most people bought all four issues, but some folks did buy just the first one or two, for budget reasons or “just to see if it was any good.” And I had one fellow buy just #4…when I asked him about it, he explained that since it was the last issue of the series, that’s where all the action would be, so he decided to skip all the setup and go straight to the payoff. Had I read the comics beforehand, maybe I could have warned him.)

Army@Love #2 – I’m sure this was filled with the usual Rick Veitch goodness, but our distributor saw fit to short us our order on this title, and send us an equal amount of the Marvel Spotlight: Spider-Man’s Wearing His Black Costume Again, Which Coincidentally He’s Also Wearing in The New Big Budget Movie Coming Soon one-shot in its place. Not a fair trade, frankly.

Fantagraphics comes to the rescue with Love & Rockets #19 and Mark Martin’s Runaway Comic #3…good, solid chunks of expert cartooning.

From Pantheon Books comes the Alias the Cat hardcover, collecting the three-issue semi-annual series by Kim Deitch about his search for the truth behind the titular cartoon character/movie star/costumed superhero. It’s strange, almost surreal, but entirely wonderful, as is all of Deitch’s work. The hardcover doesn’t appear to have any new material (aside from the full-color endpapers), but it does make for a handsome package…worth buying even if you have the original comics.

In other news:

That strip I discussed yesterday, featuring an apparent caricature of comedian Patton Oswalt, is presented for discussion on a message board frequented by Oswalt himself.

And that brings me to a brief discussion (1/3 down the page) of Watchmen by Dirk Deppey, who counters Toupydoops‘ assertion that Moore & Gibbons’ book is overrated. I’ve said repeatedly that Watchmen is not a superhero book, but rather a book about superheroes, about what works in the superhero genre and (mostly) what doesn’t work. The difference between the two positions, I think, will become even more pronounced if/when the Watchmen movie is released, and it’s just another X-Men-style punch-em-up. Which will be a shame, because the public has seen enough superhero movies by now that a Watchmen movie deconstructing superhero movie clichés in the same way the comic took on comic book clichés would be a translation keeping in the spirit of the original, and possibly not confuse the general audience. But I’m not holding my breath.

This college news website story about Brad Meltzer’s Justice League of America run strikes me as…odd, somehow. I don’t know if it’s the presented factoid of “Starro is a giant starfish who tries to use his mind-controlling powers to conquer Earth,” or Newsarama being called “NewARama.com,” or the article being signed off with “until next time true believers this is comic book boy saying ‘Take care!'”

Or this quote:

“Meltzer grew up reading Justice League, which was why he wanted to write this re-launch. In an interview with NewARama.com, Meltzer said, ‘I so wanted to do this. I loved it. Just like I loved it when Marvel did it.'”

When Marvel did what, exactly? Relaunch Justice League? Or does “it” refer to just “making comics in general?” The article gives no clue.

“The pitfalls of tangling with a superhero – Why are blue-chip actors like Edward Norton signing up to appear in lycra?”

“What seems to be happening is that the actors themselves are being duped into thinking that these are roles of Shakespearean complexity. Blame the unstoppable rise of the modern graphic novel. Frank Miller’s Dark Knight Returns and Alan Moore’s Watchmen opened up comic books to a wider audience by adding a dash of realism to the fantasy world. Directors have taken this as a green light to slap large helpings of human suffering and emotional torment on top of any comic book material that comes along, to the delight of a succession of quality actors. Sadly for everyone else, the only people who want to see a miserable superhero are the actors and directors themselves.”

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