Saturday, November 19, 2011

Just a random list of things I miss...

  • Adam Strange in his classic costume.
  • Booster Gold in a solo title, in his classic costume.
  • J'onn J'onzz eating Oreos.
  • Gotham Central and Detective Renee Montoya.
  • Stephanie Brown
  • Vic Sage
  • Ted Kord
  • Two-Face and/or Harvey Dent
  • Single issue stories
  • A story arc that doesn't hinge on the world ending
  • Small, thoughtful stories where characters use their wits to beat a foe
  • Characters I can feel invested in
  • Harley Quinn
  • Actual detective comics
  • Denny Colt
  • Comics drawn by Darwyn Cooke or Bruce Timm
  • Secret identities

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Adam Strange by Ardian Syaf

Here is Adam Strange by Ardian Syaf, thankfully rendered in his classic uniform:

He's maybe just a little scowly for my taste (Adam was always a light-hearted guy in my mind), but seeing that classic uniform is enough to give me hope.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Martian Manhunter by Dave Perillo

Why can't comics be like this now?  I miss that retro Silver Age style.

Martian Manhunter by Dave Perillo on DeviantArt.

For those of you who just can't understand Adam Strange, this won't help

I give you Adam Strange in Greek:

Unfortunately the site I found this one doesn't provide any more info.  (What I'm wondering is if it's a new translation and they've reissued Showcase Presents in Greece, or if a fan made this.)

But there's always something fascinating to me about comics in foreign languages.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Laura Hudson says it better than I can

I haven't felt much like reading comics lately.  Part of the reason is my confusion over the DC reboot.  The other reason is expressed so well by Laura Hudson over at Comics Alliance.


And what about some wisdom from the mouth of babes?  There's a reason cartoons based on comics are so popular, and part of that reason is because TV producers have to appeal to a wider audience than comics.

Honestly, DC, I don't know what's going on over there.  You're making reading comics a chore, and I don't want to work to be entertained.  Escapism is why I read comics in the first place.  I've dropped all my books except Stormwatch, which I am hanging onto out of sheer loyalty to my favorite hero, Martian Manhunter.

Give me some good stories, some heroes to look up to, a couple of cool fight scenes, a little bit of humor, and that's all I want out of my comics.

Come here, old JLI trades...I need you...

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Superheroes art print by Danny Haas

Superheroes and their secret identities:

Monday, July 18, 2011

Man Up by Liam Brazier

Why does all the awesome art involve Superman?

"Man Up" by Liam Brazier

There's a real trend towards abstraction in pop art, it would seem.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

J'onn J'onzz is wearing purple now...

When Frank, alias "FLD," ("Fun-Loving Doofus," "Furiously Livid Dog," or "Frank Lee Delano," he's left the door open and there's no turning back now) over at the Idol-Head of Diabolu, mentioned in a post that J'onn was wearing purple, I kind of thought it was just a lighting issue.  Turns out I was wrong.

He IS wearing purple.  As both a purple lover and a comics purist, my emotions are torn.  Do I go with the color I love so dearly, my favorite color, the color that comprises 80% of my wardrobe?!  Or do I go with a pulishing history that reaches back from sixty years, and a costume that, even though it's seen its share of re-designs, still comes back to its basic form published fify-five, nay, fifty-six years ago?

Oh the drama!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

You got Adam West in my Dark Knight/You got Dark Knight in my Adam West

In other news, I still haven't figured out the new Blogger.  Apparently some people still have the old Blogger?  Maybe this is because I have a Gmail account?

Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy

WHOA.  When did Blogger change their whole posting format?  And now I have to click a button to attach tags.  ARGH.

Now that I got that out of my system...

Here's some classic Bruce Timm art of good old screwball villain Harley and sarcastic villain Poison Ivy.  This is an attempt to purge that redesigned Suicide Squad!Harley Quinn and Birds of Prey!Poison Ivy out of your systems.

Take two of these and call me in the morning.  If you're old enough to remember that joke, bonus points for you.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Think Batman will ever be like this again?

I gotta say, "HOLY STRETCH MARKS!" has now entered my vocabularly.

Look out, world.  I just hope I don't run into any pregnant women between now and the time I'll forget about that phrase.

Come on, admit it.  Some small part of you wants Dick back as Robin and randomly shouting things like, "HOLY HIGHER RENT DISTRICT!"

Thursday, June 30, 2011

And how fares J'onn J'onzz?

When I heard they were first revising the JLA to include basically the "Magnificent Seven" I thought, "Ahhh.  Finally.  Some JLA stories that involve my favorite Martian."

Wait, what?  He's not on the team?  They put all Silver Age heroes on the team, but decided that the seventh slot should go to....Cyborg?  He wasn't even around in the Silver Age.  He has no history whatsoever with this team.  He's a Titan.

Ahhh, okay.  I guess they're saving J'onn for the new Justice League International title.

What?  He's not on that, either?!

Then where is he?

He's on some Wildstorm title, with characters I never knew existed.  My only (heavily-biased, bitter) guess is that the conversation went something like this:

Comic Editor #1: Okay, so we've got to integrate Wildstorm into the DCU somehow.  We need some C-list DC hero to bridge the gap.  Hey, Dan?  Who's a pathetic, loser character that no one cares about with copius amounts of untapped story potential that we keep throwing under the bus?

Dan: Martian Manhunter.

Comic Editor #1:  Thanks, buddy!  You're the greatest!

Then they all go out for coffee and burn down an orphanage on Christmas Eve.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

And now let's talk about Barbara Gordon

Well, I didn't see this one coming.

I remember a few years ago when Gail Simone mentioned in passing on her Twitter account about how she was fighting to keep Barbara Gordon as Oracle.  I had assumed it was that whole "Death of Oracle" event that was in question, but maybe it was this.

Letting Barbara Gordon go back to being Batgirl opens up a huge, gigantic can of worms, the least of which is getting rid of Stephanie Brown, the current Batgirl.  Stephanie's book was kind of a sleeper that wasn't ultra-popular, perhaps becuase it was in the shadow of all the other Bat-books.  (In fact, I don't think Batman ever showed up in her book.)  I came to like Stephanie Brown.  I really hate replacement characters, so coming from me this means a LOT.  Like Miss Martian, she grew on me very slowly, and I came to really enjoy her ditzy antics, sarcastic commentary, and enthusiasm for crime-fighting.  She almost reminds me of Miss Martian in a way, perhaps because they are both naive, un-ironic female characters.  Her book was light-hearted, easy-to-follow, and most importantly, fun.

Barbara Gordon, as Oracle, played a supporting role in Stephanie's book, until she stopped showing up and was replaced by Firewall, whose real name I forget.  Babs had to be there to pass the torch to Stephanie and give her her blessing, which is what the first arc was basically about.

Now I guess time is going to be rewound or erased or whatever, and Babs is going to be able to walk again.  Sigh.  It was nice seeing a character deal with a major, life-altering disability as gracefully and honestly as Babs did.  It was nice seeing a disabled character be a superhero.  I agree with pretty much everything Jill Pantozzi said on the subject, much more eloquently than I ever could.

While it was fun to read Batgirl: Year One (which is pretty awesome by the way) and see a Batgirl who was the daughter of the police commissioner fighting crime alongside Batman, I can't help but wonder if the trade-off is worth it.

And while we're at it, how exactly is this reboot going to work?  I mean, if we're going to erase time and have the JLA only have been around for five years, then Damian-Robin wouldn't even be born.  Jaime Reyes would probably be like thirteen, so how can he have his own book while Barbara Gordon is back being Batgirl?  I'm confused, and DC is supposed to be using this non-reboot to make things less-confusing.  And shouldn't Ted Kord not be dead, but back to being alive?

Yeah, I'm never letting that one go, DC.  Ever.

You can't pick and choose your time-rewinding without it seeming obvious that you're just picking the books that sell well as opposed to the ones that don't.  That's just marketing driving story, and I don't like that kind of "story-telling."

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Wither Harley

Oh, Harley!

What have they done to you?

Besides the fact that this outfit is ridiculous just from the sake of physics.  (I mean, we're talking about a character who does a lot of cartwheels as part of her schtick.  Flipping upside-down + half a bustier held together with dental floss = well, you might as well just get it overwith and run around topless, why don't you?)

Skimpy outfit aside (I'm starting to get numb to them by now...or at least not so surprised anymore) this outfit throws away one major part of the character: her association with the Joker.  Harley Quinn was a character who was indirectly created by the mind of the Joker.  She dressed as, well, a harlequin to go along with the clown theme.  Added to the mix was that she had a background in gymnastics, and basically her suit was a unitard.  Makes sense, right?  I've always been a stickler for a character's outfit being a representation of his or her motive or identity.

Now what does the above costume represent?  I really have no idea.  It just looks like a cosplay outfit to me, reminiscent of the Arkham Asylum video game.  So what kind of statement does that make?

I got nothing.  A lot of fans complained about the skimpy outfit, but no one has really said anything about her lack of association with the Joker.  (I'm basing this on pure assumption, taking the next logical step from Gotham City Sirens.)

Somewhere along the line, it was decided that Harley Quinn should break free of the Joker, and I never quite understood why.  Do fans want to see her on her own instead of playing second giant mallet to the Joker?  (If that is the case, then Gotham City Sirens shouldn't be ending.)  Do fans want to see her as an anti-hero?  (Having Poison Ivy in the Birds of Prey aligns with this.)

Her relationship to the Joker was such a complex and deliciously twisted one that I was sad to see it go.  The Joker was her main source of motivation: she did anything to please him, much to hilarious or tragic results.  Cutting her off from the Joker completely leaves her drifting in thin air as a nothing but an motive-less psycho in a skimpy outfit.  Though she had broken ties from the Joker in Gotham City Sirens, he was still a looming shadow of her past that still held some sway over her psychologically.  She was still motivated in some way by him, however tenuous.

So what is it you're trying to say now, DC?

Friday, June 17, 2011

Young Justice to continue

I'm way behind on my cartoon-watching, and I take my cartoon seriously.  I finally caught up with the last episode of Young Justice which aired in March.

Though Cartoon Network has a screwy kind of schedule (shows just seem to come and go at random times of the year), it looks like Young Justice has been picked up for a second season.  Who-hoo!  It took me a little while to warm up to the show, but I've since started to enjoy it.

The last installment didn't feel like an end to the series, and a check on Wikipedia shows that one episode still has yet to air.  (Though when, it does not say.)  Which is unfortunate.

But the latest episode, "Bereft," was cute and fun like most of the other episodes this season.  Due to the magical plot wonders of amnesia, we finally got to hear Artemis make fun of her own outfit.  (Which I personally find rather ugly.)  All of the action took place in Bialya, and I love it when obscure fictional places are used.  On top of all that there was a "Seinfeld" reference.  (Which is really all I need to make me happy.)

Also refreshing (and maybe becuase it's for the younger set,) the show does a good job of explaining potential plotholes by having the characters ask questions of each other or narrate explanations.  (Though they did not explain why they would take Aqualad, a character dependent on water, into the middle of the desert, where of course he got dehydrated.)

Each of these characters has come into their own quite well.  Artemis is the cool, sarcastic foil to M'gann's bubbly air-headed cuteness.  Robin is the waifish, precocious imp.  Wally the hormonal, wise-cracking wannabe-lady's man, Aqualad the distant and noble leader, and Superboy is the angst-ridden awkward outsider.  It's not an easy job to create that many personalities in a group and have them work together and off of each other and still leave the audience with the ability to get to know each one.  So I applaud the writers for that.  (Plus the voice acting is pretty darn good.)  A lot of the dynamics come from who has a crush on each other and who can't stand so-and-so, but with a show aimed at tweens and teens, it's to be expected.

All in all, I like the show, which is saying a lot, because I really don't like sidekicks.

(Which of course means it's going to get cancelled sometime soon.)

But they are running re-runs every Friday night at 6 p.m., so if you haven't had a chance to watch the show or need some catching up, summer is a great time for it!

Oh, and this episode's best line:

"Artemis, to Wally: Stop touching yourself!"

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Happy Flag Day!

Flag Day is one of those holidays you just kinda don't think about.  Well, I like me some obscure holidays.

Plus I wanted an excuse to post this Adam Hughes cover from Krypton to Earth.  Becuase I like Adam Hughes.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Green Lantern by "lerms"

From lerms, on DeviantArt:

An entry in the SD CCI Souvenir Book.  It's unknown whether or not it made it into the book.

But I think it's pretty cool!  I love how easily Hal Jordan lends himself to cartoonification.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Hitler Reacts to Flashpoint

Wow, it's been a busy week.

And I've been cranky comics-wise.

So in lieu of an actual post, I gve you this.  You may have seen this oft-used scene to rail against everything from stolen cars to XBox to vuvuzelas.  Now Hitler's mad at DC.

Apparently Hitler is also a Grant Morrison fan.

No comment.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Batman or Shakespeare?

Quick, who said the following:
Smoldering, I burn you—burning you, I flare, hot and bright and fierce and beautiful.

Or this?
Welcome destruction, blood, and massacre. I see, as in a map, the end of all.
Were those two lines from a Shakespeare play, or from a Batman comic?

You can put yourself to the test at Sporcle's "Shakespeare or Batman" quiz.  You might be surprised at the answers.  (I scored a measly 67%.)

After that, you can go on to quiz yourself in how many U.S. Presidents you can name in ten minutes.  I somewhat redeemed my self-esteem for the paltry showing in the Shakespeare/Batman quiz by naming 36 out of 44 presidents.  I'm not sure if knowing who James K. Polk is is a better thing than being able to name a Batman quote, but I take my comics quizzes seriously.

There are quite a few other comics-related quizzes at Sporcle, even quizzes relating only to DC Comics, if you want to take a look.

(Also sad: I didn't know what Captain America's real name was.  Have I mentioned I want to go in to every Marvel movie completely fresh?  Doesn't get fresher than that.)

Have fun!

Oh, and Frank, this one's for you:

Color me surprised!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Fisher-Price Oa Playset

And how adorable is this, folks?

A Fisher-Price Oa playset, complete with Hal Jordan, Kilowog, and, nope it's not Ch'p, it's B'dg.  (But I can pretend it's Ch'p all I want.)  I love how GL characters (Hal Jordan included) translate so well into cartoony-ness.  It's too bad they're going all sturm und drang for the movie.  And guess what?  The little lantern lights up, and the gun shoots stuff (yay violence!) and the tether thingy that Kilowog is on spins around and stuff.

This is why I'm not allowed in Target, becuase I would buy this for myself.

And then actually play with it.  By myself.

Monday, May 16, 2011

The comics doldrums

I've been neglecting my poor blog lately.  I didn't get any comics last week, and only two this week, including the last issue of R.E.B.E.L.S.  My pull list has really dwindled and there seems less and less to be excited about in the comics world.  I wasn't that thrilled with how Brightest Day panned out, so color me less than excited for Flashpoint.  (Even though the promise of seeing DC's superheroes through time and especially, the past is somewhat tempting.)  But the idea of trying to get a handle on a massive storyline spanning dozens (?) of books seems daunting and stressful, not fun, to me.

Even more fitting is that Smallville wrapped up with a rather lukewarm finale.  I tried really hard to like that show, and there were a handful of episodes that did truly send me into a comic-induced giddy-fest, but the finale (and its preceding two episodes) just didn't do it for me.  It was written more as a love letter to long-time fans, so most of the sentiment sailed farther over my head than Clark Kent finally figuring out how to fly higher than a 747.  Lame simile, I know.

Also, Batman: The Brave and the Bold, which was I show I initially disliked but now have come around to, has been cancelled.  I do not know the fate of Young Justice (is it coming back for a second season?) and the Wonder Woman pilot has been passed over.

So it seems as though I am about to embark on a journal into a comics desert for the foreseeable future.

Does anyone have any giddy-fyingly good comics prospects that you're excited to hear about?

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Happy Belated Mother's Day?

Totally stealing this from mathematicsore ("m.c.") who posted this in a comment on The Idol-Head of Diabolu: (sorry!)

Oh, the good folks at Let's Be Friends Again.  You make my day.  Because J'onn has a juice box.

At first I thought it was Barry and I was like, "Did they just kill off his mother?" and then I realized it was Wally.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Adam and Alanna Strange by Chirs Samnee

Why isn't Chris Samnee doing work for DC?

Becuase he draws a lot of great DC characters.

Adam Strange and Alanna by ~ChrisSamnee on deviantART

Says the artist:

I took suggestions on Twitter today, and although the suggestion was just for Adam Strange, I couldn't help but include Alanna. I have a soft spot for married characters. :)

I miss the old Adam Strange.  And Alanna.  *sigh*

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Wonder Woman: not a class act?

Of course I can't find the link that I was going to comment on.  There was another item about the Wonder Woman pilot in the news recently regarding the costume.  There were some words from David E. Kelley about a scene in the pilot where Diana is driving and gets cut off by some guy, then gets pissed off and chases him down and yells at him.  And I remember thinking, "That just doesn't seem like something Wonder Woman should do."

I have yet to read an actual solo Wonder Woman comic, so maybe I'm off the mark, but I always thought she was something of a dignified class act.

Or maybe she really is a little uncouth and I never noticed?

Click to en-biggen.

Wonder Woman shows up every now and then on "Hark, a Vagrant," a web comic of delightful randomness.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Booster Gold on Smallville: A Review!

I don't post reviews here often enough.  But over the weekend was the event that was "Booster Gold Shows Up On Smallville."  There was much rejoicing.  My non-comics best friend came over.  I wore my Booster Gold t-shirt.  We made a night of it.  Becuase how else are we ever going to see B-list (okay, C-list) superheroes in live action, if not for Smallville?

I've always taken Smallville for what it is: a coming-of-age soap opera with all its trappings.  I never really was a fan of it until I got roped into it by my friend, who faithfully watched the show from its beginning.  I just couldn't reconcile the differences with continuity (the first example being how young Clark's parents are, the second being all these random superheroes originating in Smallville.)  Anyway, when Smallville became the C-List Cameo Show a few seasons ago, and I heard the name "Maxwell Lord" uttered by my friend, I got drafted in.  After giving her a DC Universe education, that is.

Geoff Johns wrote last week's Booster Gold episode, which instilled a little bit of confidence in me that one of my all-time favorite characters would be handled well.  He did, after all, write a great run on Booster's solo book, which I rank as some of my favorite comic stories.

Well, I can't say I was overwhelmed by this episode, but I was just happy to see Booster Gold in live action.

The Visuals:  I'm a nitpicker, and though the costume was shiny in the right places, it was lacking in others.  This being Smallville, it was of course, leather, so I can forgive that, becuase every superhero costume on Smallville is leather.  But I don't like fake abs.  And no shiny gold pants = sadness.  But it was a design I could live with.

Except for the awkward hanging crotch protector thingy.  I honestly can't live with that.

I'm a big nitpicker for hair, I will admit to that.  And Booster's hair was all wrong: it was just frosted blonde on the top, not all blonde, so the back of his head was brown.  And his hair was just too short.  For one of the DCU's most amazingest hair-dos, you've got to try harder to do it justice.

The Acting: Eric Martsolf played Booster more like his "52" incarnation: cocky, brash, self-promoting, and kind of a jerk.  But a jerk with a heart of gold!  I kind of prefer the screws-up-all-the-time-despite-hist-best-efforts Booster, but Martsolf played the ham quite well, and both my friend and I were entertained.  And thanks to Geoff Johns, in the end of the episode we got to hear Booster talk about his insecurities, which I think is a big part of the character.

The Writing: Okay, I'm not a big Jaime Reyes fan.  Not only did he start out as the replacement to Ted Kord, but I don't like the whole prisoner-of-the-scarab schtick.  That's just too angsty for me, and it always seems like Jaime would fit better in the Marvel universe than the DC one.  I prefer the plucky, industrious, corporate inventor Ted Kord Blue Beetle.  Sorry, I just ain't letting go of Ted.

That being said, I actually liked Jaime Reyes here, which is saying a lot.  He worked in the context of the Smallville universe: Geoff Johns, proving he is a master of things that make you go "awww, poor kid," (or known by the high-falutin' term, "character identification") shows Jaime being picked on by his peers involving a can of shaken soda, and just when you think things are looking up, a lovely girl comes over and hands him her can.  Which then explodes in his face, proving the girl was in on it.  Ouch.

Then the scarab escapes from Kord Industries and bonds with him, and things go downhill from there.  Jaime comes to Booster for help, and in typical Booster fashion he brushes him off.  Jaime (this time fully enclosed within the scarab armor and unable to control it) comes back to assassinate Booster.  The resulting climax highlights both Jaime's need to control the scarab, and Booster's realization that he's a failure of a superhero.  All of this plays out under the watchful eye of Clark Kent, who previously gave Booster his pearls of wisdom about a suit not making you a superhero, and Booster tells this to Jaime, and Jaime regains control of the suit.  He then decides he'll keep the scarab and go on to fight evil with it.  (Leading right into the Blue Beetle solo TV series...perhaps...)  They seemed to depower Booster a bit, and though I kept yelling at the TV to "Use your force field, Booster!  Use your force field!" he never did, so all he had on hand were his wrist blasters and Legion flight ring.

Right before the climax, my mother wandered into the room and after the usual questions, "Who's that guy?" which of course prompted the most cogent explanation of Booster Gold to date from myself: "It's Booster Gold, Ma.  I like him because he's shiny!  Look, I have his shirt!"  And then we had to field all the Smallville-related questions about why there's the S-symbol but no one calls Clark Kent "Superman" and how come he's wearing a red leather jacket instead of a cape, and is that blonde girl supposed to be Lois Lane?  Momma Liss = John Q. Public's view of superheroes.  And kind of a vocal one.  Anyway, she liked Jaime.  "Oh, that poor kid!" was the verdict on Jaime.

There's also the typical intrigue of "is Booster good or isn't he?!  Is he trying to take Clark's place?!" that is another staple of Smallville cameo episodes.  The same was true of Ted Kord: "who is this guy working for?"

By the way.

I forgot to mention Ted Kord was in this episode.


I think I was more excited to see Ted Kord than I was Booster Gold.  For one, the casting was dead on.  Tell me this guy doesn't look like Ted:

Go ahead: tell me this guy doesn't look like Ted Kord and I will HIT you.

Not only that, but he seemed EXACTLY like the Ted Kord from Batman: The Brave and the Bold.  Which made me insanely happy for some reason, to see that B:TB&TB is having an influence on someone as mighty as Geoff Johns.  Hopes that it might be renewed anyone?  Maybe?  Please?  For those not familiar with Blue Beetle's appearances on B:TB&TB, he's quite a bit more serious than the Ted of the Bwa-ha-ha JLI days, and he's intelligent, dedicated, competent, and shown as the genius industrialist that he is.  Which is one aspect of his character that often falls by the wayside: people forget he invented a whole ton of gadgets.  Just like Batman.  Only better.  Like a gravity-defying airship that'll beat out a pansy Bat-Plane anyday.

There were no silly bwa-ha-ha moments here at all, becuase not only is Smallville is a pretty dark universe, but in this incarnation, Ted and Booster don't know each other.

I know, right?!  It's like...sacrilege!  But if they had known each other, then Ted would've vouched for Booster's reputation, and the plot would've flown right out the window.  But Ted was here, he had a sizable role, and that made me happy, and he was onscreen enough for me to annoy my friend by shouting, "OMG IT'S TED KORD!" about every thirty seconds or so.  And the best part is: Ted didn't die.  No one did.  See?  Good stories can be written where all the characters live!

Everything tied up rather nicely, with Booster taking on a mentorship role to Jaime (much like in the comics) and Ted and Booster had a chance to meet each other.  Diehard Smallville fans (like my friend) were excited becuase it was the first episode where Clark used a telephone booth to change into his "costume," such as it is.  I can't say I was that excited about that, only becuase I can't believe that there are phone booths in big cities anymore, but I like the nostalgia it evinces.

The verdict: It made me happy.  It made my friend happy.  We ended the night watching the Booster Gold episode from Justice League Unlimited to make up for the lack of Skeets in the episode.  Skeet's voice could be heard on Booster's little earpiece, but we didn't see him, and he wasn't sarcastic enough.  No problem, though: JLU cartoon to the rescue!

Momma Liss's verdict: "This isn't Superman!"  Truer words were never said.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Booster Gold by "enolianslave" on DeviantArt

Because I just saw the Booster Gold episode of Smallville, and it's been a while since he's shown up here.  And becuase I love Skeets:

booster by *enolianslave on deviantART

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

It's takes a little guts.... go meta.  Not "meta" like "meta gene."  "Meta" like "meta-textual."  Especially when you say something like this:

And so Giffen and DeMatteis's run on Booster Gold comes to a close.  There's some odd banter on the Scans Daily page for this issue which bears reading.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

The Crocheted Manhunter

Okay, beat this for cuteness:

Oh yeah, and Batman.

A crocheted plush Martian Manhunter, made by an acquaintance of Mikeyb79 on DeviantArt.  So adorable!!!  I love his face.  You can find pictures of other crocheted Justice Leaguers on Mikeyb79's profle on DeviantArt.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Martian Manhunter redesign by Joel Ojeda

I found this somewhat randomly online.  Some think the Martian Manhunter's costume is begging to be redesigned.  And yet I never seem to find a redesign I fully like.  This is an interesting take, especially noteworthy becuase it jettisons the red chest straps in a pretty unique way.  I could actually get used to parts of this design.  It's hard to tell because it's rather dark, but it looks like his cape is blue on the outside, and lined with red, which I find rather interesting as well.  I could do without J'onn's tribal tattoos and claw-like fingernails, but on the whole, it's one of the few redesigns that I almost like.

What do you all think?

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Never pass up an opportunity to poke fun at Batman...

He has a little megaphone!  :D

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Three costumes for Wonder Woman

Or so the president of NBC says.  So she'll have the ugly light blue pleather thing, the rodeo queen star-bedazzled redesign, and the Lynda Carter original.

Also, he says that the redesigned costume wasn't becuase of fan feedback.

“There was an initial outcry about the long pants – you know, skintight pants as opposed to those little shorts [worn by Lynda Carter in the original TV series],” Greenblatt concedes to “But the shorts were always planned. They are actually used in the final confrontation when she beats Veronica Cale (played by Elizabeth Hurley).”

Why are TV executives (or movie executives, for that matter) so cocksure about the changes you've made to an idea you don't own, and which has been around for seventy-plus years?

“We haven’t made any changes from what was planned,” the NBC boss reiterates. “But it’s always good to hear the feedback. I’d rather have people really passionately engaged in conversation, even if they hate something, than be kind of bored.”

Sure...I welcome your feedback, John Q. Public, but I'm not going to listen to you!  Get angry about what we're doing!  That means you'll TUNE IN!  Muahahahahaha!

No, I'm not jaded at all.  Not in the least.

You can read a more professional run-down of the latest Wonder Woman news here.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Unknown Star Wars comic art

Wow, it's been nearly a week since I posted.  Time is getting away from me!

I love me some painted comics art with a Golden Age flair.  It's not DC, but it's so pretty I couldn't pass it up.  I'm a big Star Wars fan, but I never got into reading the comics (mostly becuase I'm one of those purists who just likes the original series.)  Unfortunately, the blog where I found this doesn't tell me who painted it or where it's from.

But, hey, enjoy some pretty art.  I'm a sucker for sarcastic loner space captains.  Hmm...maybe I should find some Vril Dox comics to read...

Monday, April 4, 2011

Green Lantern movie Wonder-con footage...

Did anyone get a gander at the exclusive scenes shown to Wonder-Con viewers?

I can't embed it, but if you go here, and click on "Wonder-con Footage," you'll see a four-minute clip from the upcoming Green Lantern movie.

I can't help feeling more and more that the approach to this movie is completely wrong.  It's just too steeped in Chris Nolan Batman-esque tones, complete with Hal Jordan imitating RAWRI'MBATMANVOICE in the last lines of the clip.

I could live with that, though, if Hal Jordan still had white gloves.

But there's one line that I find ridiculous:

Tomar Re is sent to greet Hal Jordan as he arrives on Oa, and suddenly Hal's (ugly, misshapen) mask disappears.  (Apparently Hal has no input into the appearance of his uniform, either.)

Hal looks puzzled, to which Tomar Re explains, "Your mask will appear when protection of your identity is required."

Hollywood-ese translation:

Ryan Reynolds wanted more face time.


Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The NEW new Wonder Woman Costume?

Okay, so I got my computer up and running...just in time for me to get the flu!  I swear, someone doesn't want me blogging.  Maybe it's a conspiracy on the part of DC for all my complaining?

Well, anyway, here's a short post about the new new Wonder Woman costume.  Yes, they revamped it after all of our complaining.  But is it really good enough?

I don't looks too similiar to the JMS revamp for my taste, and they kept the ugly plastic belt.  And c'mon, jeans?  That's a little too casual for a superheroine who happens to be an Amazon Princess.  I know, I know, I'm just one of those people who complains no matter what.  But there's so many other designs out there that I'd take over this one, including the original, several fan designs that I've featured here before (thanks for bringing that to my attention 1TrueGL), and one of my favorite, the Darwyn Cooke design.

(Which of course I can't find...but here's a Darwyn Cooke rendering of the traditional Wonder Woman outfit.)

Wow...looking at the Darwyn Cooke drawing makes me think Adrienne Palicki looks too thin for the role.  She doesn't have to be a body-builder, but I like to think of Wonder Woman as a bit heftier and womanly: Marilyn Monroe instead of Kate Moss.

Oh, and here's some footage shot during filming, in case you want to see the costume in action:

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


Oh noes!

My MacBook Pro's hard drive finally couldn't take it and just decided to stop working.  So I needed to wipe everything clean and start over, and unfortunately, backing up all my data from my wireless hard drive is taking upwards of three days(!)

So I probably won't be doing any substantial blogging for a little while.  Hopefully things will be working once all my data is transferred (crosses fingers.)

Sunday, March 20, 2011

First glimpse at the new Wonder Woman...

I really have no faith in the entertainment industry at all anymore, which is why I take solace in watching old movies on TCM.  Here's a picture of the new Wonder Woman costume:

I can't stand the costume at ALL, but I'm guessing maybe it's a promo picture, and/or this show is going to rely heavily on CGI. Or it's going to be constantly be nighttime on the show, a lá Smallville, so we can't tell that her tiara is plastic. I can forgive the fabric and plastic (somewhat) if they do something in CGI to fix it. Then again, I'm getting sick of CGI.

That being said, the blue boots are CRAP.  Why would you want to get rid of Wonder Woman's red boots?  They're iconic!  The costume's fabric is cheap-looking, especially the red fabric, which looks like it came from a 1950's bar stool. And how does this girl move, let alone breathe? I feel sorry for her if she loses a contact lens and has to bend over with that pointy plastic thing sitting right on her abdomen. Goddesses don't need underwires, either, and that's the icing on this crappy Halloween costume's cake for me.

And the pipe cleaner lasso?  Sigh.

For some reason Adrienne Palicki just doesn't look at fierce as she has in other pictures I've seen of her.  There's a softness in her face that doesn't work for Wonder Woman.  Hopefully they can play up those cheekbones somehow.

What do you guys think?  Any fans of this new ensemble?  (Don't be afraid to speak up!)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The unwitting victim of Batman, Inc.

Wonder if he gets benefits?

Monday, March 14, 2011

The best superhero in a skirt... Magnus, Robot Fighter, without a doubt.  Oh, you were thinking Miss Martian, maybe?  Or Supergirl?  Nope.  It's this guy.  Yep, that's right, I said "guy."

Eat your heart out, Hal Jordan.

Well, I didn't say "guy," I typed it.  But enough of that.

Don't let the skirt fool you.  If you're an evil robot overlord, you better watch yourself, or you'll get torn in two.

It's called a tunic, dammit!!!  How many times do I have to tell you people that?!  I will take out my agression on this helpless Pol-Rob.  RAWRRGGH!!!

Or cleaved down the middle like warm butter...

DeviantArt by Cinar.

Or you'll get your robot head karate-chopped off.

Bringing sexy back, one lethal backhand at a time.
DeviantArt by DocShaner.

So, lesson learned: never get on the wrong side of a man who wears a skirt.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The superhero attraction

Why do characters endure?  It's something I've thought about.  Can anyone really explain it?  (I bet Joseph Campbell could.)

Sometimes it's hard to believe that Superman is over 70 years old, and yet he's become a part of American pop culture.  Then again, Romeo and Juliet are hundreds of years older, and the heroes of mythology are thousands of years older, and they're still going strong.

I wonder if somewhere deep in our brains there's a little cell that lights up when we hear stories about beings more powerful than us.  Or smarter than us.  Or braver, or stronger.  Why is that?  Do we want to know that it's possible to be better than we currently are?  Or do we want to know that there are other people out there who are grander than us and can take care of our problems for us?  Are heroes reflections of who we are or visions or who we want to become?  Are they idols to worship, or saviors to deliver us?

Some have considered superheroes (or aliens, or supernatural events) a proxy for the human genetic need to believe in something greater than ourselves.  Dean Hamer called it the "god gene."  Except we don't need to believe that superheroes in order to be attracted to them.  I don't think a Kryptonian is going to fall down to Earth and save us anytime soon, and yet I respond to the idea of "Superman" on a very visceral level.  Maybe heroes tap into a genetic desire for self-preservation and safety.

Or maybe it's one level higher.  Maybe the superhero attraction taps into our hard-wired moral predilictions.  Maybe we don't think there's enough justice in the world, so we like reading stories about justice-seekers who right the wrongs of their fictional universe.  Maybe if these fictional heroes can do good in their world, we can apply the same methods to bring justice to ours.

Maybe it's more vague, more "human."  Maybe we just need to look in a mirror from time to time.  Maybe the attraction just comes from seeing a character who reminds us of ourselves, whose heart is in the right place, whose suffered a few losses, who tries and fails and decides to try again, or who's lost something and moves beyond it, and maybe we need someone like that to look up to as a template of human behavior.

All these thoughts are swirling around in my head.  I see comics as a very primal force that meets some deep-seated needs in my brain.  I think that is why I like some books and not others: the books I don't like fail to meet some hard-wired need in my brain.  That little Greater Than Me cell isn't lighting up in my brain, and I'm not happy.  The story isn't connecting with me on an emotional level, or an idealogical one, or a moral one, or a human one.  When a character doesn't act better than I do, then it's not a story worthy of myth.  Then it's just real life.

And real life kinda sucks.

This post is really long and dreary, so I included a picture of two squirrels kissing to make you all happy again.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Happy March! or, a Poison Ivy sketch by Adam Hughes

Oh, Adam Hughes.  You have one heck of a sense of humor.

I know, it's a little bit NSFW, but it's just too darn funny not to post.  Plus it's actually March, so that's two reasons!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

More thoughts on Young Justice

After a week off, Young Justice returned to the air with a new episode.  Last night's episode, "Downtime," focused mainly on Aqualad while he spent some time I getting this right: Poseidinus?  I guess that's the Atlantean capital city, from the looks of it.

While I'm not much of an Aqua-fan, I have to say that first off I was pretty disappointed by Mera's character design.

The cool thing about Mera is her scaled bodysuit, no?  The halter bikini top/pareo and random bits of chiffonn thingy just isn't regal enough for me.  Besides, she has such pretty hair!  Why pull that back into a ponytail?  Oh, and her crown was ugly, too.  Sorry, Mera, don't take it personally.

If it ain't broke, don't fix it, I says.

Aqualad noodles around with Tula, Garth (the original Aqualad, I think), and some Atlantean sorcery.  Retcons abound, but I'm getting so immune to retcons I barely notice them anymore.  The retconning bothered me a lot less than the animator's choice of underwater mechanics: when Aquaman looks awkward swimming, you know you've got a problem.

Highlight of the episode: Superboy can't figure out how to use a satellite TV.  Even someone with superpowers has trouble with that.  Now I don't feel so bad.

Oh, and Miss Martian is quite the cook.  An awkward, ditzy cook, but cute nonetheless.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Denny Colt is watching you...

...via Google.

Actually, this has nothing to do with Denny Colt's cockeyed voyeurism of you, but actually is to celebrate what could be Will Eisner's 94th birthday.

Will Eisner was a pretty cool guy, and the folks at Bleeding Cool do a lot better job than singing his praises than I do.

I'm just happy that an icon of comics history got his own Google doodle, and I'd be even happier if people got to know who Will Eisner was because of it.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Guy Gardner sketch by Marcio Takara

I think this will make Sally happy.

How about a sketch evoking the good ol' JLI days?

Here you go!
Here's what the artist says about this piece:

Guy is awesome! JLI was what got me into reading comics! Maguire is one of my gods!

I couldn't agree more.  Check out Marcio Takara's DeviantArt account for more comics goodness!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

So Brightest Day is almost over...

...that went kinda fast, didn't it?

Here's the description of the final issue:
A long shadow is cast across the world in a a finale that will have everyone talking! Twelve heroes and villains were resurrected, but that doesn't mean it will remain that way as the new champion of Earth is chosen!

Hmm.  So who is this New Champion of Earth going to be?  The obvious choice seems Deadman.  It would make sense to kill him off and make him be...well, Deadman again.  But then I thought: that's just way too obvious.

I don't think it's going to be any of the villains, so I'm ruling them out.  Fans seem to have taken to Aquaman too much for him to be in any role other than King of the Seas, plus he's got that new Aqualad to contend with.  There's a lot of story material there to cover a solo series.

Jade kind of went missing--I lost track of her, so I don't think she's high-profile enough in the writers' eyes.  The Hawks are a couple, so I don't think they'll be split up.  That leaves ones of the Firestorms and Martian Manhunter.  Hmm.  It's quite possible that either Ronnie or Jason might be sacrificed to become Earth's protector.  Then I started thinking about that one issue where J'onn sees an alternate future and he's a Green Lantern.  Add to that the fact that Martian Manhunter is low-profile enough that changing his role in the DCU won't ruffle too many fan feathers and he hasn't had anything significant done with his character since the Morrison JLA days in the 90's.  He could easily be transitioned into a new role.

Sooooo....J'onn J'onzz, White Lantern?

What do you all think?

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Young Justice: First Impressions

I finally got around to watching the episodes of Young Justice I had saved on my DVR.  Has anyone had a chance to watch this show?

While it's a shame Batman: The Brave and the Bold had to go away to make room for Young Justice, I find myself enjoying it nonetheless.  And that's even in spite of tweaks to character and continuity, too.  So, here's some random impressions:

Overall: It's a quality show, and the voice acting is quite good.  I'm liking the realistic style of the charcters, too.  Seeing some normally-proportioned bodies makes me realize how tiring the giant shoulder/tiny legs Bruce Timm JLU character designs were getting.

Care was taken to make sure each of the characters is unique, which is always refreshing.  Superboy is the brooding, tempermental outsider.  Robin is a plucky technie nerd.  Aqualad is very different from his Brightest Day incarnation: he's regal, exotic, and calm under pressure.  I guess he's like a future version of the Brightest Day Aqualad?  Kid Flash (Wally West) steals the show and is pretty much like non-kid Flash Wally West from the JLU days: impulsive, funny, and a tad arrogant.  Why Wally is Kid Flash and Bart isn't I don't know...becuase Barry is Wally's uncle?

I've got mixed feelings about Miss Martian.  She's cute and sweet but kind of clueless and talks to herself in the third person.  Judging by the number of Miss Martian-hating anti-tribute videos on YouTube ranting that J'onn should disown her, a lot of people don't like her, which makes me want to root for her a little more even though I'm not a big fan of the character in the comics.  I like how she's a more innocent female superheroine, albeit a bit ditzy, which I guess rubs some people the wrong way.  God forbid a female character isn't bad ass, I guess.  Apparently her dress is a point of contention, but I don't think these anti-fans realize it's pretty similar to a Japanese school uniform you would see on an anime series.

It's too bad that the writers had to take liberties with Miss Martian's continuity.  She's J'onn's niece and apparently she has ten brothers and sisters.  So that means she's a.) a Green Martian and b.) Mars isn't dead.  Which is going to be confusing to fans of the show who decide to pick up a few comics about her.  The other huge change?  She has telekinesis and she can move things with her mind.  So between reading minds and moving objects she's ridiculously powerful.  Oh, they kept the "fire" weakness but they changed it to "extreme heat."  And she can't ghost through solid objects like J'onn can.

What I do really like about Miss Martian is (I can't believe I'm saying this) is her clothing.  Like her ship, it's intuitive, so it changes shape with her.  Meaning that she doesn't have to manifest part of her body into a cape, which makes a lot of sense to me.  Wouldn't rendering part of your anatomy into cloth take a lot of concentration?  It was always something that bothered me a little.  Why I hate to admit it: the idea came from the Ostrander Martian Manhunter series, which I dislike greatly.  Except that Miss Martian's clothing isn't alive, nor is it called "Zo'ok" (or was it "Z'ook?") so I'm allowing myself to like that idea.

Oh, and Martian bonus points: I like the way they pronounce "J'onn" on the show.  It's not "Jean" like he's from Paris, nor is it "Juh-onn."  I can't really describe it.

Lastly: Artemis.  I can't stand this girl.  From her poofy early 90's pony tail to her impractical belly-exposing outfit with ugly mask with hair window* that makes her forehead look huge and a chest symbol that she stole from Jade, to her snotty I'm-better-than-you attitude.  Is this character in the comics?  Is she always this mean?  I'm a little rusty when it comes to the Arrow family.

A lot of the show is "teenagery" with who's got a crush on whom and all that, a lot of which is played for laughs.  Kid Flash is head-over-heels for Miss Martian, who's completely oblivious to Wally and who only has eyes for Superboy.  And Artemis likes Superboy, too.  Everybody likes Superboy, except Superman.  Yes, really.  He's quite mean to him.

So far the funniest bits have been Kid Flash freaking out over seeing Miss Martian grow extra arms to swat away robotic monkeys, and when Miss Martian telepathically links everyone up and Kid Flash forgets that everyone can hear him think.  Which is probably something I would do.  Thank God other drivers at least can't hear me when someone cuts me off, is all I have to say about that.

All in all, a good show.  I'm sad Brave and the Bold had to go away, but I'm enjoying Young Justice for now.

*Only Booster Gold is cool enough for a hair window.  Oh, and Animal Man.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Happy President's Day!

Celebrate like only Superman can!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Oh, Mr. J'onzz....

John Carter called.

He wants his red cabochon Mars-symbol-thingy back.

Seriously, though, isn't that cover art up there for Warlord of Mars #7 by Joe Jusko pretty awesome?

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Wonder Woman's identity revealed

Did anyone hear?

They cast Wonder Woman for the new TV show.

Adrianne Palicki is a 5'11" actress who has appeared regularly on Friday Night Lights, Smallville, and the never-aired Aquaman pilot.

Well, she looks the part, at least in this picture.  I haven't seen anything she's in, so I can't really comment.

Here's the official description of the Wonder Woman show, which has its share of red flags as far as I'm concerned:

The series pilot is a reinvention of the iconic DC Comics title in which Wonder Woman – a.k.a. Diana Prince – is a vigilante crime fighter in Los Angeles but also a successful corporate executive and a modern woman trying to balance all of the elements of her extraordinary life. Kelley and Bill D’Elia (“Boston Legal,” “The Practice”) are the executive producers. The pilot was written by Kelley and will be directed by Jeffrey Reiner (NBC’s “The Event”). “Wonder Woman” is from David E. Kelley Productions and Warner Bros. Television.
I'm a little wary of the words "corporate executive" and "modern woman trying to balance all the elements..."  All I can picture is a soccer mom in a power suit on her way to a board meeting with a latte in one hand and a cell phone in the other.  Meh.  Then again, I am a cynic and this could all turn out fine.

What do you all think?

Monday, February 14, 2011

Look at the prety pictures

I'm too tired and fighting off a cold to come up with the blog post I was intending to write.

So in the meantime, enjoy the view of Amy Reeder Hadley's art from Madame Xanadu #21 and some dialogue by Matt Wagner.  Madame Xanadu is having some apartment problems, it would seem, and J'onn still has that trademark dry sense of humor.  Good stuff!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Silver Age John Jones Week, Day 4

Becuase in my universe, a week is ten days, and we're somehow on Day 4.  And it's countdown item #3.  Anywho...

3.  Silver Age J'onn J'onzz had a purpose.

This is something that seems to have fallen by the wayside in recent years.  (Or perhaps just in the wake of the Crisis.)  In some 90's stories you'll hear J'onn refer to himself as a "manhunter," which is some sort of Martian peacekeeper kind of role.  But back in the day, "manhunter" was just slang for a cop, and J'onn J'onzz chose to become Slueth from Outer Space.

The gimmick of J'onn's character was that he was a detective who used his powers to solve the crimes that regular humans couldn't.  He's now gotten away from his detective work altogether and many a DC writer doesn't know what to do with him besides make him confront the ghosts of Martian past when flying solo, or acting as the fall guy for Superman in ensemble stories.

Capture the criminal...or go back home?

If you bring J'onn J'onzz back to his detective roots, he'll have some purpose again.  (Another way to give his character some meaning: shepherding a group of immature heroes.  Hey, it worked once before.)  Either way, J'onn needs to DO something to participate in society.  Right now, J'onn isn't serving man or any higher purpose other than the vaguest of superhero motivations.  The more he goes off and is forced to confront rebuilding Mars, the less relevant his is to Earth and the less identifiable he becomes.

Give him a personal mission that forces him to make a few tough decisions, a mission that we can relate to, and it will only improve the quality of his character.

Making the difficult choice: what a hero is supposed to do.