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

Archive for September, 2015

277

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

Every Wednesday and Friday

277


Pop Meeting 107

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Beyond the pages of comics books there is a whole world of cool collectibles and toys to entice our wallets and fill our houses.

Join us tonight at the Parma Heights Library at 6:30!


Banner small dark copyToday’s the day. I don’t quite know whether to throw a party or a wake.
I’m going to miss seeing these characters every week, taking my moments to comment on Pop culture, film and comics.
Six years. That is a great portion of time. Longer than High School or College. Longer than I’ve stayed at any job. It’s going to be very strange to wake up Monday morning and not have new Violent Blue to share. Strange and a little sad.
Yet this shouldn’t be a reason for sadness. We did it. All of you who joined me on this journey, we made it – we hit the finish line and finally made it to the very ending that I had planned for this story when I began work on it in August of 2009.
This story has always been planned with a beginning, middle and end. The plan was always about five years long, though there was a bit of time where I was sure we were going to end in four years instead. I can barely believe that we find ourselves at the end, 900 comics and six years later.
Working in the long form has been unlike anything else I’ve ever done, and even though this is the end of this story, I’m certain it’s not the end of the road for these characters. There’s already one novel out that takes place about a year or so after the comic (you can find it here : https://www.createspace.com/4303824), and I’m pretty sure I’ve got at least one more book in me (not to mention the first draft sitting on my computer that I’ve never gotten around to polishing) and perhaps even a short spin off series next year. Chloe Steve and Taylor aren’t done whispering in my ear yet…the voices may be even stronger now joined by unexpected friends like Aimee, Jen, Lisa, Jamie, Bob, and all the others we’ve gathered along the way.
Thank you to everyone who has followed us, and I hope you’ll be around for whatever comes next.

See the final Violent Blue Strip here :

http://violentblue.webcomic.ws/


276

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

Every Wednesday and Friday

276


Josh Harnell

Autographs

Josh Harnell is a voice actor who’s done way more stuff than you probably realize, thoguh my favorite is Wakko Warner on Animaniacs. I was able to contact him via his whole bizarre cover band Rock Sugar….

Wakko


275

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

Every Wednesday and Friday

275


This week

tvVery much been waiting for this week, a lot of returning shows. Let’s start with the best one – Doctor who started up again Saturday!

doctor_who_series_nine___the_magician_s_apprentice_by_lemonhead118-d8cgc5eI like Capauldi. As he settles into the role I find I like him more and more. This was a good story too. When he cried out to the child in the battle field “Tell me the name of the boy who will survive this!” and the missy-michelle-gomezboy replied with his name…it made my jaw drop.

As much as I don’t like the implications of the Master’s gender swap, I have to admit that Missy is the best incarnation of the character since Anthony Aniley. Possibly since even Roger Deglado. The further examination of her relationship with the Doctor was fascinating – Clara asked all the right questions. But what I love more than anything is the way this episode makes Missy one of the companions.  Now THAT’S brilliant. I’ve always preferred a crowded TARDIS with multiple companions, but to make the Master one of them? Perfect. From time to time he’s been a regular on the show and it just fits.

I do have to admit though, the whole bit with the doctor playing guitar felt like a bit too much for me. It feels like it belongs in a Pixar movie, not in Doctor Who. It’s the sort of thing cartoon characters do to make little kids laugh. Doctor Who kind of should be better than that.

Still, if that’s my biggest problem here, then we’re in good hands. The cliffhanger has me eagerly awaiting this week’s broadcast.

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Gotham is back! But man, that was over the top this week wasn’t it?

My first thought seeing Barbra Keen in Arkham was to wonder if that was Harley. That speaks to the problem of jump starting this series again after another long break. Those hiatuses are killing us.

gothamI know it was all over the place so we knew to expect it, but I wasn’t thrilled about seeing the Joker here. Honestly he doesn’t need a backstory and I find him far more interesting without one.

But back to over the top. Seriously, how many times can Gordon lose his job and get it back? Our only glimpse of Edward nigma was him going crazy – a bit of a shame. He’s a fun character and I’d rather see more schtick with him, not just his deepening insanity. Penguin is still the show stealer, but he’s becoming a bit of a caricature of himself. This worries me.I know this is the rise of the villains, but a LOT of balls were tossed up in the air this episode. I do hope they follow them one at a time instead of giving up a bit of five different storylines each episode like a soap opera. I sold my wife on this series as a police procedural crime drama, and last year it was. In fact it was done so well it never even occurred to her that this might be a Batman show. I’d like to see them pull this back a bit, closer top that again. I’m still interested. Still engaged, and I definitely want to know what Bruce’s dad was doing in that cave office. I imagine this is where the court of Owls will come in.

image_5ba8fa2aSo, the Muppets. I guess my first reaction was “Is this the best they could do?”

I have been cautiously optimistic about this series the entire time and I very much want it to succeed. It does not bother me that they are not presented as kids characters. What bothers me that I didn’t find the new show funny.

There’s some notable exceptions. The gag about Zoot mistaking what kind of meeting it was and Fozzie describing the perils of going on dating websites referring to yourself as a Bear are great jokes that will make kids and adults laugh – for very different reasons. They need more of that. I liked the bit with Gonzo, Rizzo muppetsand Pepe previewing their Dancing with the Czars bit (and how good is it to see Pepe getting back into the act again? I missed him in the last two movies!). It’s funny and very Muppets. There’s a moment when Kermit tells the girlfriend “You don’t have to be funny every time you come into the writers room. The writers certainly arnt!” It’s a good gag, very Kermit…except there’s something in the delivery. In the past when he’s been critical of an act, it felt exasperated, flabbergasted. In this series it feels cynical. Exasperated is charming. Cynicism is not. Edgy and mature, but not charming – and I don’t think that’s the way people want to see these characters.The Daily Telegraph put it better : “The fundamental mistake multi-millionaire comedy genius Bill Prady has made is to assume that because grown-ups still harbour affection for The Muppets, they’ll automatically want to watch the characters in adult situations. We do not. We already hate our jobs, our relationships and our lives. We don’t want to see that frogs, pigs and bears have it just as miserable as the rest of us. ” Read the rest of thier review here : http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/tvandradio/tv-and-radio-reviews/11883190/The-Muppets-ABC-review.html

I think I’d like this better as a special or a mini-series, rather than being the official incarnation. It’s not an inherently bad format, but it did fall flat for me. We’ll have to see if the fans (including me) can acclimate to it (but really, should we HAVE to work this hard to like something?). Then again, I just don’t understand the need to reinvent the wheel. Boom comics did a good job going back to basics and I still really miss that comic.
I don’t think ABC understands how to develop it. NBC took a shot at it ages ago (two years before Disney finally bought the property) and actually produced one of the best muppet specials ever (A very Muppet Christmas) and I wish they could have another shot at it. This isn’t that hard, why does everyone feel the need to reinvent the wheel? Bring back the Muppet theatre. Bring back the stage show and the backstage antics. That’s EXACTLY what NBC did. They built the theatre – FULL SIZE, and they were doing a big Christmas show to save the building from an evil developer (played by Joan Cusak). It just worked SOOOO Well. “A Very Muppet Christmas”. Don’t know how NBC got the rights that one year, but ABC has done everything since. Sometimes its okay, I liked OZ. Most of the time…well, I really don’t like any of their other comedies either.

I’m not alone in my concerns either, EW and the NY times join The Telegraph as less than optimistic about the show’s direction.
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/22/arts/television/review-muppets-abc-kermit-ms-piggy.html?_r=0
http://www.ew.com/article/2015/09/22/muppets-ew-review

There is one thing to be happy about though, and I can’t say this enough. I am beyond pleased that Disney is using the property. Really that is a huge positive. It is a great shame that the previous owners let the franchise fall out of the public eye and did nothing with it from 1996 to 2002 ( and very little before or after that). Since Disney got them just over ten years ago we’ve see constant output and development, and when Imagine Dragons did the closing performance and we had the Electric Meyhem backing them up, animal playing the big drum with teh stage lights pouring down on him…yeah, some of the magic is still there. It’s why I’m goign to give this a bit more of a chance. Interested in seeing next weeks ratings for this show.
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This is one of my favorite graphics. A soft portrait that gets the message across immediately, simply. This photo was actually shot on my workbench with my test equipment, arranged just so…. I added the text on the computer screen and played with the shading to give it that quiet moment look.

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(and yeah…I had to blur the Lilo and Stitch graphic on my coffee cup….)


274

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

Every Wednesday and Friday

274


Jewlery

art showBannerRemember a few months or so back when lydia created some real jewelry? Well she was in the mood to make some recently, but didn’t have anything to make it out of…so she took paper and crayons and made her own!

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