Last Weeks Pulls 6-15-22
You’re not alone Gwen. At this point, I kinda hate the sound of your voice too.
I know, I know, I should have known better than to pick up this month’s Spider-Gwen, but man, I REALLY want to like this book. I want to like the concept and the quirkyness and I just DON’T. This arc is just full of low effort copy and paste versions of an already derivative character ….AND it’s going on at the same time they’re doing THE EXACT SAME THING with Miles Morales over in What if! Gahhh! (and now I’m going to have to build that Iron Gwen armor for Maddie aren’t I?)
On the other hand, I have to say, I noticed something this month in a lot of the flagship titles. They were fun. Good old fashioned adventure.
Cap is a relaunch, but this run of FF and Iron Man have been going for a bit now so that’s one of the real tests. Can you just drop in to see whats going on, and have some fun in a single issue? You sure can. I can see we’re in the middle of a bigger story in FF, but never felt to lost. Yeah, I can see that there’s some interesting relationship stuff going on with Tony and Patsy in Iron Man, and I can roll with it since it doesn’t take away from main feature – Tony in the suit vs a Gorilla. (It’s the Silver Age at DC all over again!)
Over in Cap, it gets a little introspective- trying to set the tone of the series, but it’s all supporting a good old fashioned bad guy beatdown. Bucky/winter Soldier is back at Caps side for some reason, but okay. Cool. You can see they are setting up for something bigger – I don’t know If i’m up for that much bigger ride yet, but this first issue was great.
And hey…I’m behind on Batgirls aren’t I? It’s weird…I don’t know how I missed issue six, but considering it wraps up that first run, I had to grab it before i started up on number six.
This series has been a been a fun ride, built mainly on the strength of our two young Batgirls. Watching Cass and Steph fight together is always a fun time- there’s a choreography to them, both in action and personality that’s really worked well over these first six issues and now I really want a trade paperback collection.
My only objection is the whole ex-boyfriend drama between babs and the villian. Not even the drama itself as much as how dumb it’s portrayed. Panels like this and the whole “W were never official!” thing….it’s just jr high cringeworthy. This isn’t Friends. You aren’t Ross and Rachel. This is…. *sigh*. It’s a misstep. That’s all. It’s also a perfect example of how Barbara’s best contribution to this dynamic is as mentor and manager, rather than participating directly in adventures.
Still, with that one done, it’s time to move on to issue seven and….wow. Just wow. As much as I was into the style that Jorge Corona was bringing to the series, wow o wow, huge props to Robbie Rodriguez for seriously stepping up the art game on this book. While Corona leaned into the heart and sometimes goofy nature of the ladies, Rodriguez gives the Batgirls a more flowy look that is highly evocative of early Jae Lee and creates a drama that just flies.
There’s not tons to say about the story. We’ve kept the same writing team and it’s a part one that sets things up with a good adventure, but like I said before, the real reason we’re here is to watch Cass and Steph hang out. It’s just us spending time with some friends and perhaps remembering the better parts about being that age… you know. if you were also a superhero.
Dick Grayson shows up at the end to help Babs infiltrate the Iceberg Lounge (Cass watches them from a roof top lamenting how much fun it would have been if she and Steph could have dressed up too!) and I really can wait to see more of that.
Good pulls this week. The world needs more fun comics.
Then again, maybe it needs some more disturbing ones too. I finally got through most of my Free Comic Book Day Stack, and the one book that really stood out to me was a creepy little book called “Bunny Mask” It’s hard to describe. Bunny mask is a strange entity looking fore sickness, and doling out justice as she sees fit. It’s exactly the sort of book Vertigo would have published and it deserves to be just as big as an indie as it would have been with Vertigo. It’s disturbing and creepy and absolutely beautiful. This one is really my highest recommend. It’s on issue two this month so you don’t have to worry about being to far behind. This is the perfect time to jump on board.
3 Dev Adam (Three Mighty Men)
In an attempt to stop the evil Spider-Man’s organization smuggling from Mexico into the US, those respective governments enlist the help of Captain America and El Santo!
This was actually my first exposure to Santo, but it makes more sense if you already know him as a folk hero. Still, this is a little nuts, and Spidey is extremely evil in this, with eyebrows as big as the day is long and a fiendish mustache under that mask.
This one has been in circulation for ages now and shouldn’t be too hard to track down, but if you don’t want to spend an hour and a half slogging through it, just hit the highlights on YouTube!
Seriously, I should have snagged a clue when I passed the billboard for Indiana Comicon on my way to Days of the Dead, but honestly, even with the attendance of Carrie Fisher, they really didn’t have a lot of media guests… it wasn’t going to be THAT big of a con was it? I was beginning to have misgivings, but still, I grabbed my Shadow costume and hit the road.
Indiana is possibly the biggest convention I’ve attended. easily as big as Wizard World Cleveland was. Big cons arn’t my thing. I don’t dig standing in lines all day, fighting the crowds. I want to be able to interact with the guests and hang out at the panels. The bigger the con is the less of that I get to do and this thing was HUGE.
It’s their second year and it shows. They haven’t quite gotten the hang of scheduling or crowd control. Last year people were unable to get in, refunded admission after standing in line for hours. This year those problems were solved, but they crept up again inside with the guests. There were a lot of upset attendees who stood in line for Carrie Fisher for up to 4 hours only to be turned away. It wasn’t just with her either though. Paige O’Hare (Belle from Beauty and the Beast) had her line closed three times while I was there. It would open for an hour or so (less than an hour that last time 4:30 and closed around 5:15) and shut down again for a photo op or panel. I didn’t make it up to see her and my girls were disappointed.
Still, truth be told, I wasn’t there for the media guests. I was there for the comic guests – and this is to Indiana’s GREAT credit. They are VERY focused on comics, and brought in some amazing guests.
Whilce Portacello mentioned that working on the Punisher was great training for young artist.
“I had to do so much research on the guns, I had to get everything right all the lines all the look.”.
I always love the way that Whilce created speed and action, and he told me “You’ve got to do that sometimes.” he pointed to a particular punisher cover. “Look at this, it’s an old cannon. It’s boring! You got to do something to make that look cool!”
One of the other things I love about his era, is this is when we got away from the cylinders as teeth on the Punisher’s skull.
“That was Mike Baron. We started out with the Cylenders, but he wanted to take it back to the early look. It dosen’t make sense anyhow! Why Cylinders? They don’t bend!”
I also talked to Mike Grell about Green Arrow : The Longbow Hunters asking how this came about it he come do do this. Did they come to him?
“They asked me if there was any one DC character I’d like to take and revamp and relaunch who would it be? My first thought was Batman, But at that time Frank Miller had just done Batman and I had a feeling that his version with stick for the next 20 years, and I was right!” he said, referring to the changes in the new 52.
“I always loved Green Arrow and they suggested what about Green Arrow as a hunter – well this was perfect for me!”
I mentioned to Grell that I thought Jon Sable was the one of the most interesting character in comics. I really do believe this. He smiled and shook my hand, saying “I’d really like to get back to this character some day. I think there are a few more stories in him.”
I had questions for Mark Wade about Kingdom Come, curious if all that background imaging we see throughout the graphic novel was all Alex Ross
“All that background noise was all Alex.” he said. Waid is currently writing the Green Hornet and loving it. Dynamite is just a great home for these characters and he asked if I was reading the new Avenger series as well. I haven’t picked it up yet although I very much enjoy Justice Inc.
I question Mike Zeck on his covers for 10 nights the beast which I love, but why does the beast look so different on his covers and he did on the inside?
“I didn’t really study the inside of these issues” Zeck replied and it appears to have been an access issue although he did create a stunning painted cover which is more in line with the character design for the trade paperback which I love.
I got a moment with Jae Lee to gush about how much I loved his Masks covers, and we discussed the Dark Tower a bit (I’m working on the novels right now, and was listening to an audiobook on the way down to the show) and his work on the comic prequels.
Art Thibert was up next and I’m a big fan of Art’s. Particularly when he inks Dan Jergens. There is this era of superman right after Jerry Ordway leaves and we are really missing his art. Dan Jergens is adequate. He’s more than up to the task but there’s just something about the Thibert over Jurgans that’s got this kinetic look.
“A lot of what I was doing were actually finishes not just inks. All that hatching and speed lines. though it might be credited as inks, Dan was doing a lot of layouts and leaveing thefinishes for us.”
Bob McCloud is unassuming, quiet and friendly. His career spans decades he’s done just about everything he’s inked everybody. “I’ve been very lucky” he said.
Denny O’Neill has fond memories of the shadow, especially of Anthony Tollin who was his go-to guy for preparation.
“Any time I had any questions he said I can immediately go and call Tollin. There is a guy who has lived his life exactly the way that he wanted to.”
We discussed both Tollin and Walter Gibson’s love of magic. I’m a magician as well, and I can see how that is part of the appeal.
“Gibson was a lazy writer. He would stop typing after his fingers started to bleed!” O’Niel joked, referring to Gibsons prolific output.
He loved my Shadow costume. So did Allen Bellman
“I though the Reaper had come for me!” he exclaimed as I came up to his table. One of the things I love about cosplaying the Shadow, is it’s a simple costume – and I can get out of it and look reasonably normal for photos with guests, but slip that scarf right back up and get into character in seconds. It’s also unique. I see dozens of Deadpools, hordes of Harley Quinns, but no one else is dressed like the Shadow, and it’s one of those characters – when people recognize who you are it makes them incredibly happy.
One last note, I’ve really got to hand it to the little girl from Frozen, she stayed at that booth all day and was energetic and happy period she reminds me so much of my children, with the exaggerated movements the excitement the little bundle of kinetic energy 22 a poster and showing it off, greeting kids with high-fives and hugs to takeing photos and talking with them and interact with them. You can see she wants to be here too, she wasn’t just dragged here by a momager, she’s loving this, and that makes me feel good about her appearance at these kind of shows. I have the utmost respect for this young woman and almost regret not taking a photo of her, but let’s face it, that would be creepy…
All in all, I’m not going back. Too far to drive for what I got. Not all of that is the cons fault, but it wasn’t one of my better days and more and more I think I need to stick with the MUCH smaller shows. I have a better time with them. Wasteland in two weeks.
And now – about a hundred photos.
These days, I tend to gravitate far more to film than I do to TV. I just don’t watch that much anymore. Some of that has to do with the serialized nature of modern television as opposed to the stand-alone episodic format I grew up with. Having to sit down at the same time every week is difficult for me.
That may have been one of the reason Agents of SHIELD was such a challenge for me. I wasn’t invested and quite frankly, I kept forgetting that it was on, although I’d stop and watch it if I happened to find it while flipping channels if it was near the beginning.
I’ve been aware of the hype behind Agent Carter but wasn’t really planning on watching it. It seemed like more of the same, and my attitude was the similar, that I would probably watch it if I happened across it while flipping channels.
Amazingly, that’s exactly what happened.
I really like that this has such a firm connection to Captain America : the first Avenger. I remember spending a lot of the early day in SHIELD expecting it to feel more like a spin off of the Avengers, but it never really managed to feel like a proper sequel. In this show however, we see carter browsing that Steve rogers file that was shown at the end of the first Cap movie, and we even get a flashback to it. This is exactly the kind of payoff I wanted and it makes it feel very connected.
I love Howard Stark in this. I really wish we’d see more of him, but I suspect that’s not going to happen and that’s a shame really, even a mentor part – a bookend to the episodes would really work well for me. It’s my hope that if this series goes somewhere that he will become a regular member of the cast after his name is cleared.
There are nice touches here. I happen to love this era and I’m really focusing on that. Throughout the episode we hear bits of a Captain America radio play which is another one of those great ties to the character, not to mention being a good juxtaposition between the perception of the agent – the Myth and the actual person. It’s not subtle by any means, but it fits, rather than the forced way Agents of SHIELD used to try and shoehorn a reference to “Gamma Radiation” or “Stark Industries” in every episode. Indeed, a lot of Agent Carter works in great part I thin, because the producers have better learned how to put a show like this together, and have a better feel for what the fans want, and how to tie it to the cinematic universe while grounding it for a broader audience.
If you like Agents of SHIELD, then It’s safe to say you’ll like this. They are both very much the same genre, while each having their own distinct personality and it’s interesting to see that Marvel is really developing their own sub-genres here, their own CSI franchise if you will. While Agents of SHIELD wasn’t my thing, I do believe I will probably follow this one all the way to the end. The fact that there is an end helps for me, and I can more easily make a commitment to seven episodes than I can to 22 and beyond.
Captian America : The Winter Soldier
I finally got around to seeing Captain America this weekend. I know I’m lat to this party, but you know me, I don’t visit movie theaters that are less than 70 years old. The Lorain Palace was showing it in 3d for 5.00 (as opposed to a 2d matinée at a normal theatre for 7.50 at least).
Here’s the thing. The Winter Soldier isn’t a superhero movie. Sure they try to fool you with some big set pieces in the beginning and the end, but make no mistake, this is not a superhero movie. It’s a political thriller – and really, that’s exactly what you would expect from Robert Redford in this role. With SHIELD infiltrated by Hydra, there’s far more intrigue than simple action here. I almost wonder if it’s too elevated for the subject matter.
I was really complementary about the first Cap film. I stand by my opinion that it was the best Superhero film I’d seen in a good decade. I revisited it recently and found it’s not as rewatchable as I had hoped. It’s still as good, but I can’t return to it again and again like I can with The Avengers. It makes me wonder if this film will have a similar feel. It’s an awfully complicated story for casual viewing.
Speaking of The Avengers – I’m having some issues with Scarlet Johansson and the way she plays Black Widow.
It’s not that I don’t like her in the role, I’m perfectly fine with the casting, but it seems like she never plays it the same way twice…does she just forget how the character is played every time? I also wonder if that’s part of the act….that she has so many faces, so many identities that all of them are false. If that’s the case then it really should be a little cleared. perhaps I am just over thinking this, but in her third time out it’s beginning to get to me. In the end she just comes off as really bland.
They also try to play up her dark past in this film. it seems a little late to be getting to this. We kind of acknowledge it in the Avengers, but it’s just in one line. Here it’s far more explicitly stated but feels like it’s too little too late – either tacked on for the fans or an afterthought to try and enhance what has always been a secondary character.
There’s a LOT of Cleveland in this film. This always takes me out of the movie a bit, I’ve spent a lot of time downtown professionally and I recognize so much of what we see here. That is one of the greatest car chases ever, but I know some of those streets. The scene in the mall is crazy. I take my daughters to those fountains. I buy coffee at that stand! I’ve done work in that building they’re keeping the Winter Soldier in….
Falcon is a nice addition in this film by the way. It’s a good origin story for him and he really has chemistry with Cap. I’m actually looking forward to seeing him in the next film…and let’s face it, they telegraphed the sequel. Then again, the commercials really gave away a lot of plot points, and I found myself waiting for stuff to happen. On the other hand it also let me know that I WAS going to see the familiar red white and blue costume for part of this movie and not just the slick blue and silver one. I was pleased that it was a full third of the film.
Interestingly enough, all the commercials and memes and internet chatter I was sure Nick Fury was going to really die in this. It was interesting that all of the spoilers actually hit me in reverse…
I really liked this film and can’t wait to see the next one.
Well, you know, after I see Superman vs. Batman.
By the way, we’ll be spending the whole week over at Violent Blue celebrating the new Cap film. Check it out! the first strip is up here : http://www.violentblue.thecomicseries.com/comics/680
Top Five Marvel movie heros
Time for a top five list I think. The glut of comic book movies hasn’t slowed down yet, though the tone is changing (https://argocitycomics.wordpress.com/2012/10/29/the-future-of-comic-book-movies/) and I decided to think about who my favorite movie heros were. Not from DC, that’s way to narrow a playing field, even if you include the vertigo stuff. Marvel however, has been pushing out every possible character into this new movie universe of thiers, along with the unprecedented move of making it a definitively shared universe (as opposed to a suggested shared universe suchas the hints we get that movies like Soldier and Prometheus are in the same universe as Blade Runner or the tease in Predator 2 about being in the same universe with Aliens) with the Avengers.
I was surprised to find a lot of these favorites would be mirrored by my favorite Marvel characters in general and quality of the films has little to do with it…..
Specifically the Rami version. There were some problems here, I never liked the idea that every villain had to be related to Spidey somehow and I wasn’t always fond of Tobeys Peter Parker – on the other hand it was a perfect 60’s-70-‘s Peter (i preferred the 80’s – 90’s versions) but he made a perfect Spidey and the suit was the best we’ve seen. Andrew Garfield makes a better Peter, but that’s about all he’s got going for him.
No real specific one. People like to drag Dolph Lundgren through the mud about this role and blame him largely for the failure of his Punisher film. I find that completely unfair, and pretty inaccurate. He dis a good job on the character in my opinion, probably a better job that Ray Stevenson even. Really, I actually like all the actors to play this character equally, though if I had to pick one, it would be Thomas Jane simply because he had a better story to be in…..but that’s another whole blog post.
This character is one I really enjoy DESPITE the movies. I’m not a fan of these films because there’s so little we see of Iron Man in the suit. I’ve complained endlessly about this elsewhere so i don’t need to rehash it here. On the other hand, Robert Downey Jr. inhabits the role. He’s perfect in it and actually, I think Avengers was this Iron Man’s finest hour. The character looks great on screen, and they consistently get him right. I just wish his solo movies were better.
I think i’m one of the only people who actually like this movie. I really do, it’s on par with Tim Burton’s Batman to me. It has a similar feel, definitely a first movie, an introduction without getting mired down in an origin story. There’s a fascinating arch wit the character and they keep the tone dark and dirty as the best Daredevil comics are. Sure you can pan it because it’s an Affleck movie, but really, we don’t see much of him in it. He’s always hidden behind glasses or a mask. He dosen’t ACT like Ben Affleck either, no (well, few) T-Shirts and his attitude is kept in check – it’s actually a performance for a change and not him just playing well, Ben Affleck.
Obvious right? Not so much. If you know me, you know I don’t actually like Wolverine. His appeal baffles me. The key here is Hugh Jackman. Jackman has mad this character accessible to me somehow. He turned him into someone I’m actually interested in and that’s no mean trick, especially considering I didn’t enjoy most of the X-Men movies, in fact I never even bothered with First Class. I still have no love for him in the comics, and really didn’t want to put him on this list. Surely someone like Cap or Nick Fury was more deserving right? But when I come down to it, I found I really do like Jackmans Wolverine more than most other Marvel movie heroes.
Time to get back to work on Violent Blue. You know, I suspect that the characters in the strip would have very different lists than I do too…..something to think about.
The future of Comic Book movies
So blockbuster season is firmly in the past. I saw what I was going to see, and successfully avoided Dark Knight (not a nolan fan, I’ll get around to it on DVD). and I’m wondering how much longer this can last.
Don’t get me wrong. Comic Book films aren’t going away. They never have. There have been comic book films pretty much as long as there has been cinema. I have old Captain America serials and Superman movies from the 40 and 50s. I think there were a grand total of five Shadow movies. But as you look over history, you can see certian…eras. Especially in the last few decades. Usually it’s started off by a Superhero film that redefines the genre. Superman did it, and that was really the model for a good chunk of the 80s, until Batman in 1989. That redefined things as gritty, dark and rubber suits if you were going to go with a costume like in Captain America – but you weren’t allowed to show the suits too much. No costume? You just went dark and grindhousey like in the Punisher. Oh and the supporting cast didn’t really have to resemble their comic book counterparts. You can toss Judge Dredd, The Crow, Spawn and Blade in there, probably even X-Men though around that time things began to change. Specifically, Spider-Man changed all of that. Now we were looking more at making the costume as closely resemble the source material as possible, like Cap and the Avengers and Thor and Green Lantern and Hellboy ect….and it also defined the Superhero movie as THE blockbuster event of the summer.
And that’s where we’ve been for a while. In fact, we’ve kind of gone from a comic book movie being an event because it’s so rare, to any other kind of blockbuster being an event because it’s so rare. Remember Independence Day? Mission Impossible (two was my favorite)? Godzilla? How about the original Total Recal or Terminator 2? Demolition Man? We don’t see these movies so much now because the Superhero movie has taken their place. Indeed, one of the reasons The Expendables has been such a big deal is because the 80’s action movie has become nearly extinct.
Which brings me to my point. How long can this last? We’ve been on the superhero blockbuster ride for a decade now and what really has me thinking about this is The Avengers. It seems to me that with the Avengers, the comic book blockbuster has reached critical mass. It’s a brilliant achievement in of itself, and really the epitome of everything Avi Avrad was trying to do when he set Marvel down the path to making movies (his belief was that film was where Marvel would make it’s money and was the future of the company) in the 90’s.
But where do we go from here? Already the landscape is changing again. The Dark Knight seems to be the new template, judging by the look of The Amazing Spider-Man and Man of Steel. If Superhero film is moving in that direction, then the Avengers is already falling behind. And as DC moves forward to try and duplicate the success from the Avengers, the glut of Superhero movies on the market is only going to get worse, making market fatigue inevitable…and quickining it’s progress.
That’s really my fear. That it becomes so common place it breeds contempt. Without some new innovation, a REAL game changer (not just an tonal change like we got from the Dark Knight) that Hollywood will ride this train into the ground, until Superhero movies become box office poison.
And here’s the really scary thought to me both as a comic fan and as a comic artist on Violent Blue.
Because comics these days are so heavily tied to the movie properties to support them, when the Comic Book movie goes back underground or vanishes completely for a while (like it did in the seventies)…what happens to comic books?
Cinema Wasteland recap
Feeling a little down this year. It’s not so much that CW was lacking, but perhaps that I got to be a part of so little of it. Working evenings this year, I missed Friday completely and had to leave arly on Saturday. I missed Ghastlees show completely, though I hope to find video of it somewhere on youtube.
Of course one of the big reasons I do Wasteland is to see movies I wouldn’t see normally…movies I wouldnt even think to watch….even if Blockbuster or Netflix bothered to carry them (which they usualy wouldn’t). This year, I got introduced to “Food of the gods” from Bert I Gordon. Far more interesting that I imagined with the giant rats surprisingly well realized It’s still campy and silly, but still fun.
Caught the panel with Mr. B.I.G. afterwards. Better than watching the special features on a DVD.
Speaking of panels, I also caught the “Character Actor” panel. I actually came away with a great deal more respect for Reb Brown, but James Hampton…I’m not sure what happened there. He was slow, unsure. He couldn’t remember what the Eiffel Tower was…it was like watching someone have a stroke right there on stage. Rather disturbing really.
I also got to see “The Invisible Ghost” on the big screen in the main room. I’m planning on catching Dracula at the Capitol later this month, but it’s always a pleasure to watch Bela Lugois up there on the big screen in all his glory.
Met Linnea Quigley. One of my favorite things to do is find a poster the actor has never seen before to sign. This time was no exception. She loved it and was talking about how she’d never seen this image before when suddenly she stopped, looked closer at it and asked”You got JOHN LANDIS to sign this???” I admited I had sent him a letter. We then got into a ten minuit discussion about the virtues of buttons on a cell phone over touch screens. She’s a tecnophobe. I also talked a little with her abotu he haunted house I was working at….halfway through teh conversation I found myself wondering “Why am I promoting this haunted house to someone who doesn’t live even remotely in the area???” She was a real sweetie.
You may remember me trying to get Reb Brown’s autograph earlier this year. I finally got it….and in person at that (In person is ALWAYS better). He was freindly, interested and a nice guy, but I do get the feeling he was there just for the paycheck. He hit one of my per peeves as well, he charges a little extra for a photo. Now I get that sometimes this is a good thing. Some celebrities draw crowds and really long lines and if you put a fee on things, it drives away some of the punters, keeps the line moving.
Reb Brown is not one of those kind of celebrities.
Seriously, he’s fun and nice and I actually dug his panel, but even when he WAS somebody, he didn’t have THAT much juice. His resurgence in popularity is really a reflection of the Excellent Captain America movie and his part in the franchise so many years ago. Whatever. An extra fee isn’t going to break the bank, and besides, this isn’t comicon. I did get to talk with him a bit. Lana Wood (his co-star in the Cap movies) asked me to deliver a message (when she visited Wasteland six months ago) “I can see you from here”. He burst into laughter when I told him that and explained that she was always looking through these big binoculars in the movie.
It was a good con, but a short one for me. Hauntville was taking up a great deal of my time and I really didn’t get to see as much wasteland as I would have liked.
But that’s okay, I’ll be back to CW in six months…and I’m just a little over a month away from Days of the Dead in Chicago!
Looking forward to heading out to Cinema Wasteland this weekend. Of all the cons I attend it just is the best.
It’s a little weird, I’ve noticed myself doing more prep this time around. I’ve always looked over the guest list and compared it to other conventions so I know what posters to pull or to buy. The idea is to find people in the same movie that will be around different places and get all the autographs on the same poster. This has worked really well for me with the Romero films and CW is generally a really good reunion show. This time around though I’m trying to coordinate my postal autograph requests as well. I sent out to Arte Johnson to get a signature on an Evil Toons poster since the director and one of the stars will be at the show (He unfortunately never wrote back. Oh well, that’s the breaks). I was really thinking I’d try Leanna Quigley on an Innocent Blood poster (since I’m also bound to run in to Tom Savini again one of these days) and sent that one out to John Landis to get signed about five months ago.
I’m really excited about getting to meet Reb Brown. Lana Wood signed that Captain America poster last time at CW and I’m going to get Cap himself on this one. I think I’ll also be asking him about why he signs pictures of Matt Salinger….
So I’ll be taking the weekend off from Violent Blue though it’s not going to be quite the mini-vacation it usually is as I’m also working a haunted house this weekend. Certian now that I absolutely can not squeeze that showing of Beetlejuice at the Cedar Lee in there too…..
Free Iced Tea at Speedway today
If anyone is interested, Speedway is doing free iced tea today, Friday the 25th. Stop in for a free 32 oz iced tea. I’ve only stopped once so far, but the day is young. I’ll probably hit five different ones today as I run service calls.
wierd, I noticed that all the employees at Speedway in Elyria were wearing Superman shirts. I don’t get it.
Finally, I’d like to point out that Violent Blue just hit 42 on Comic Hovel’s (that’s a voting link if your so inclined) webcomic list. Those of you who know what that number means (or rather- don’t know) will understand why I’m pleased. We’re on page three and I hope that I can work it up to page one eventually on that site.
Have a happy memorial day weekend. My weekend is actually clear aside from the girls soccer games and possibly helping my friend Jason with his laptop. Time to put on the Captain America shirts and relax for a change!
I did finally manage to get out to the Avengers movie this weekend. I loaded up the girls and we hit the local Drive-in. Now if I wanted to be controversial or appear overly intellectual, I could say I didn’t like it. However, that’s not really true. It was a fun movie, and it was everything it promised to be. A big spectical superhero action flick that finally combines different franchises in a huge mash-up. It was fun.
But that’s where it stops.
In spectical , it lives up to the hype. But there’s really no story there. There’s not much in the way of character development. It’s just….meh. It’s a mindless action film – not that there’s anything wrong with that. Ahhhnald made a career of that. Stallone isn’t far behind. I don’t object to the movie being a check-your-brain-at-the-door action flick. I object to people saying it’s the greatest film ever. My friend Jim mentioned that it ruined him for all other movies! That’s a GREAT line, but this film doesn’t deserve that kind of praise.
I think I get it. You see, this is the kind of film that most of us have waited our entire lives for. I’m not just taking about pop culture junkies or comic book fanboys either. Anyone who went to see Superman in the theatre and then came home and watched Wonder Woman and Batman on TV and wondered “Why can’t they put all of these guys in the same movie?”(and seriously, was there anyone who’s under forty right now that DIDN’T do that?)…this is the film you’ve been waiting your entire life for (possibly without even knowing it). Even if you grew up and haven’t thought about superheros in twenty or thirty years, a part of you remembers. That part of you is affected and we react on a visceral level.
The cool thing about all of this is that it’s a good payoff. You get elements from the Iron Man films, the Thor and Cap movies and it almost feels like a reunion. It definitely gets the flavor of each of those franchises right, without short-changing any of them. If anything, I think it’s the best Iron Man movie of all. Joss Whedon understands something that Jon Favreau does NOT. If your going to make a movie about superheros…SHOW THE SUPERHEROS! Iron Man spent probably half of the film in his armor as opposed to the ten minuets he was in the suit cumitivly over the two Iron Man movies. I like that, and didn’t feel shortchanged at all with less Tony and more Iron Man.
I want to say that you just can’t go wrong with Cap, but a history of terrible Cap films obviously proves me wrong. Nevertheless this was a GREAT outing for him. The current handling of him has been really well done and it actually sent chills down my spine when he was diving out of the plane and telling the pilot about Thor “There’s only one God, and he doesn’t dress like that.”. Speaking of Thor, he was used well, and not overused as I feared he might be. looking at the heroclix set, he’s the most powerful piece and I was a little afraid that might be represented too much in the movie. It wasn’t and I’m very happy with that.
I asked my girls what their favorite character in the movie was. Maddie immediately piped up “Silly Hulk! Smashing that bad guy!”. I’m not a huge Hulk fan, at least in the movies. I got to admit this was a great use of him. I was really surprised at how well they managed to use him and make him a more sympathetic character. He probably had the biggest laughs of the entire movie.
All in all, it’s a good movie. It shouldn’t win any awards and I would not consider it a contender for the top five best Superhero films of all time, but it absolutely kept it’s promises and was a true pay off to the other Marvel films. I’ll be looking forward to part two. I bet the guys over at Violent Blue are too.
So I’m feeling a little bit like a punk. Remember a few days ago when I ranted about how disappointing I was that I couldn’t get an autograph from Reb Brown to have Lana Wood sign?
Guess who’s coming to the Wasteland in October?
Got Lana on that french Captian America poster, and in October I’ll get Cap himself!
Hope October is as great as this weekend was…but more on that tomorrow!
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.
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.
What do you mean Reb Brown no longer resides at 5454 Las Virgines Rd. Calabasas, CA 91302 ??? How am I supposed to get Captian Americia’s autograph now?????
Forget it. I’m going to go read some more Violent Blue.
So I was looking for autographs from Reb Brown – the actor who played Captian America in the TV movies – the one on the bike, with the motorcycle helmet (Lana Wood, the love interest from the second one will be at Cinema Wasteland this spring). While browsing, I discovered this. It’s a picture of Matt Salinger from the 1990 film, signed by Reb Brown.
Someone’s not going to be happy.
Go read some Violent Blue and get the bad taste out of your mouth.
Cap and GL
So I was finishing up watching movies I got for Christmas. It was a nice year last year, I saw every blockbuster I wanted to in the theatre…a feat I haven’t preformed in a long time (discovering the underground film scene in Cleveland and three $3-$5 theatres clsoe to my house helped a lot). Of those summer films, I only asked for two for Christmas; Green Lantern and Captian America.
Something strange occured to me.
Most of you know, my first action figure ever was Green Lantern from Kenner’s Super Powers line.
Did anyone know that my SECOND action figure ever was Captian America from the Secret Wars line?
Not only that, I used to play with them together…they were thier own special super-team. It’s a wierd thing, I’m the only one who really associates these two together because of the toys I had as a child, but here are both of these characters with films being released a month or two apart this year, and both in my hands today. It’s a fun kind of syncronicity that I’m probably overthinking, but it makes these two movies all the more special to me. (Thanks to my wife for finding them both for me!)
By the way, There’s new Violent Blue up! Go check it out!
Go see Captian America right now.
This is the best superhero movie I’ve see since Spider-Man 2, and will be remembered as one of the great superhero films like Burton’s Batman and Donner’s Superman.
Best three dollars I’ve spent all year.