The Violent Blue blog***Comics, Horror and Pop Culture***Updates Tuesday through Friday (and occasionally at random)

Archive for March, 2012

essentialPosting the best strips from the series, in order from the beginning.

Every Wednesday and FridayNew_025


Zombies.

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Sorry. It’s almost time for Cinema Wasteland. Maybe I can pass some time by reading the new Violent Blue….. or…….

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Why?

Come on Reb Brown, why you gotta break my heart? All I wanted was an autograph on that 8×11 I sent you so I could get Lana Wood on it too this weekend at Cinema Wasteland!

But you never replied. One return to sender and one no replay at all. *sniff*

Why you gotta be like that?

Forget it. I’m going to go read some Violent Blue.


So for a while there I was alternating my gaming between Warzone in Parma and Get’em Comics in Lorain. Get’em is closed now, but right before the last game nights there I decided it might be fun to whip up a 3D map of the shop for them.

I’ll bet the shop in Violent Blue looks a lot like this too….


New old comics!

I decided I wanted to go through my comics and reorganize this weekend. I’ve been getting too many doubles lately and wanted something  on paper listing what I have. My wife came home while I was about half way into the organization and told me her mom had sent home a stack of comics for me.

I don’t know where my Mother-In-Law found these. She eBays and these were probably originally ment for a lot, or bought included in a big mess of stuff that she was planning on selling. The condition wasn’t great on a lot of these and she decided it wasn’t worth her time to divide it up, price it and list it.

There’s a bunch of 60’s and 70’s World finest in here and that really excited me! I’ve never owned a World’s Finest, and always wanted to explore the series. Lately I’ve really been getting into Silver Age stuff, even though i’m more of a Bronze Age fan. Some of these have torn covers, missing covers, and a lot of wear. I’m a reader thoguh, not a collector and I’m fine with age.

Under the World’s Finest, there was a stack of old Spider-Man comics.

Oh my God.

Are you kidding me?

That’s the first appearance of the Punisher! I’ve had a reprint of that since I was 12! Condition is fair to good. Not terrible. Ant that! Is that REALLY the death of Gwen Stacy? No, seriously? And again, in decent condition….probably because it’s double bagged with a Marvel Tales reprint of the same issue!

They arn’t near mint by any stretch of the imaginaton. They arn’t going to be worth the hundreds that they would be in better condition, but still exciting to get! So thank you to Sherrie, I’m really happy to have these!

 


There’s nothing like starting the day off with a power supply bursting into flames… Power on the PC, smoke starts billowing out of the case……

Then I checked this morning’s Violent Blue to make sure it posted. I schedule two weeks to a month of strips at a time (much like a syndicated artist does) so I don’t worry about posting them manually every day. I also work about a year ahead of the current strip so it’s easy to lose track of what gets posted when.

Todays strip is just a little too close to recent events around us for me to be entirely comfortable about it. Also too many page views for me to just pull it. Synchronicity is a drag.

If you have no idea what I’m talking about, cool. If you know exactly what I’m talking about, rest assured no slight was ment, this was completely unintentional. Yes, I am that mean, but if I’d done it on purpose I’d be taking credit for it, not making excuses.

That one’s gonna be up all weekend too isn’t it? Maybe it’s time for some filler art to get it off the main page.


Kick A$$

So I actually skipped the Super Bowl last month (big surprise) and decided to catch up on movies  instead. The wife was out at a superbowl party and the kids were upstairs watching some insipid princess thing. I finished a recent film on Netflix and an unbelievably boring documentary on Dracula, and was scrolling through trying to deiced what to watch next.

Kick Ass is one of those movies that’s required viewing for Comic fans. I never bothered with it before because I didn’t think there’d be anything there that interested me. I followed the comic through issue four or five, and it just didn’t do much for me. But there it was on Netflix available for instant viewing, and I had nothing better to do. Let’s give this a try.

I still wasn’t expecting to really like it and the first chunk of the film didn’t do much to prove me wrong, but by the middle of the movie I found myself liking it way more than I expected. By the end, I realized this had actually been a good movie.

The thing is, everyone says Hit Girl steals the movie. They’re right, but perhaps not for the reasons you expect. It’s not her skill or the foul mouth that I find so fascinating…it’s that she SO much her fathers daughter. That speaks to me deeply. I want my daughters to become two little Hit Girls – not necessarily the gun toting , blade wielding assassin type. But it delights me when I walk into the library and there is Lydia, sitting watching He-Man. Or when Maddie wants to draw with me and color zombies. I’m secretly elated that Maddie wants to be She-Ra for Halloween (She and Lydia have both taken turns being Rainbow Brite). I’m alternately appalled and yet still proud that when my wife is flipping through channels, Lydia demands that she go back to the station playing the zombie movie. It’s unbelievable amusing to watch Maddie describe the scene from a horror movie  : “That monster just made that guy dead!”.

I want them to grow into girls that want me to take them to the comic shop or watch monster movies with them. Hit Girl is the embodiment of her fathers dreams and ambitions, and that’s what connects with me.

I love my two little hit girls.

And I’m pretty sure that if anything happened to me, they would avenge my death….


Beowulf

Christopher Lambert has the coolest laugh dosen’t he? I’ve been doing a staggered marathon of his films over the last week or so starting with Forteress 2 and finally arriving at Beowulf. This is my first time seeing the movie, though I’ve caught snippets of it on Sy-Fy. It’s one of those I wouldn’t stop to watch a part of because I really preferred to see the whole thing.

I really liked this. It’s a little surprising because I’m wary of anything on Sy-Fy. That’s one strike. I’m also a little wary of reimagined classics-paticularly amid the absolute crowd of Beowulf productions in the last ten years or so. Two strikes.

Nevertheless, this hit all the right notes of a fun action movie. It almost had a superhero vibe to it and I wonder if they were trying for a franchise. I kind of wish they had. I’d like to see more of these in this continuity.

One of it’s biggest strength is in it’s minimal use of CG. They enhance makeups and suits, and occasionally we have a full on CG creature, but rarely for long. The one exception is the climax where the monster is entirely CG with the exception of a few close up shots that don’t quite match up well. Still, it’s forgivable. This was a creature that couldn’t have been achieved practically and if it hadn’t been CG it would have been poor stop motion on a rod puppet. That it’s  so badly done almost makes it more forgivable. They didn’t try to trick you or make you think it was better than it was, they just asked you to suspend disbelief, after all you’ve already come this far huh?

The CG isn’t it’s only problem. I get that they probably didn’t have enough cash to achieve that effect, but the entire film lacks a cohesive look. I don’t believe in the world because there’s no consistent design language – it’s too thrown together without a guiding hand to make it all fit.

Still, all in all, I enjoyed it and will probably get a copy to keep with my other Lambert films. It’s worth checking out if you see it on TV or at the Library. And after that, go check out the new Violent Blue. We’re not doing Sci-Fi action today…but you never know what you might catch the squirrel doing tomorrow….


FOUND IT!

So over the weekend, my guitar malfunctioned. Not sure when it happened, but when we plugged it in on Sunday morning, all I got was a loud buzz. After elimating the cord, direct box and pedal we foundit was a problem in the guitar. Fritz was nice enough to loan me a Fender Stratocaster with a revolting blue picguard to finish the set with, but I was still a little heart broken. I like Fenders, I have a strat myself, one that belonged to my Grandfather. But this guitar is a custom made strat clone built by Bob Hartman himself. When the lead guitarist of your all-time favorite band builds you a guitar with his own hands….that’s special.

I got the input jack off – I figured that’s where the problem lay. If I’d blown out one of the pots, there’d be no sound at all. I’d hear static if there was an issue with the volume knobs. Got inside it and found one of the two wires (The black one)  had worked it’s way off. This can happen when you’ve got a loose nut around the jack and you keep screwing it back in by hand. Bringing my soldering kit home from work tonight to put things back together.


Didn’t I say sketchy?

Seriously. Did I call it with what I said about Cleveland Comic, Card & Nostalgia Show(Formerly Saturday’s Child).  Did I ever!

It was kind of like visiting the flea market, but with more Archies. So many Archies… I don’t really get the appeal – there’s better relationship and high school comics out there. But they were there at like, every booth!

So many Archies.

It wasn’t a complete waste of my time however. I found one of the Nightmare on Elm Street novels that were released around the time Freddy v. Jason was in theatres. These things had a single printing and were on the shelf of bookstores for about half an hour. They currently go on Amazon for 15-20 dollars used, and jump into the 100-150 dollar range new(ish). The one I got is one of the more common ones, but I got it for a dollar. I’m pleased. I plundered the quarter bins and even put up fifty cents apiece for some lovely Hellraiser issues (those prestige format editions Epic used to put out every six weeks in the very early 90’s) and filled some holes in my Green Hornet, Outsiders and bad Image collections. I even got a handfull of Avengers and a really fun Captian Americia from 1979 where he meets the Punisher. 50 Cents! Yes please.

Every booth was pretty much the same, : Silver Age, Golden Age, longbox after longbox.  A poster or two. Maybe a couple of toys and a discount bin. You either go to these things looking for something rare, or you go looking for cheap stuff (that’s me). I was fortunate to find both. The Freddy novel pretty much was worth the price of admission (which they had WRONG by the way. It was $3.00 not $4.00!) There were Door prizes every two hours or so, but honestly, I don’t see enough to keep someone occupied there long enough to collect one.  This wasn’t a convention. It was a  trade show. It woudln’t take much to turn it into a respectable con, a panal or two, a couple of local guests, how about just a projector playing superhero trailers on a screen in one corner of the room and a guy with a laptop playing DJ in the other. Throw in a Heroclix, magic or Rock Band tourny and you might have something here.

All in all, it wasn’t bad, but still I don’t think I’ll bother with any Jeff Harper Productions in the future.

Not uless they start promoting Violent Blue anyhow.