Tuesday, September 19, 2006

The Triumphant Return of...

I'm back baby!!!

With my eyes functioning properly (apparently my tear ducts were malfunctioning) I have returned to share my thoughts on the hobby we all love so dearly!!

I missed being able to write here, I'm really looking forward to doing this again. I've decided that I will update on Wednesdays and Saturdays. At least that will be the regular update, I may add little extra things now and then.

Anyway, enough nonsense let's get to the comics!

Today I want to talk about a new series that I've started reading, "Wasteland" Written by Antony Johnston with art by Christopher Mitten, Published by Oni Press.

The story takes place in a post-apocalyptical desert world. The main characters are trying to go to a city called "newbegin" after their village was destroyed by "sunners" (reminiscent of the tusken raiders from Star Wars) There is a mystery regarding certain characters abilities to understand an ancient language and more mystical stuff. I don't want to give anything away here so I'll just say that it's completely awesome.

I can see this book perhaps even being as good as "The Walking Dead" eventually. You need to read this book!
For more info check out the website at The Big Wet

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Neal Adams Podcast

Just a short thing before my eyes start to scream with agony.

Check out the awesome interview with Neal Adams at the Meanwhile Comics Podcast. An extremely entertaining interview (clocking in at close to 3 hours) covering Neal's history in the comic book industry as well as some of his fascinating scientific theories.

Check it out at http://www.ironhorsecomics.com/meanwhilepod/

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Excuses, Excuses...

Hey all,

just a quick note explaining my abscence as of late. You see my eyes are shot. I can't read things close up for more than 5 minutes without them straining insanely and causing me massive headaches. I'm going to the optometrist on Wednesday so hopefully I'll get some glasses or something and get back in the game. So, I haven't forgotten about my review of Sid Jacobson and Ernie Colan's 9/11 report, nor have I forgotten this weeks picks of the week, I just can't see to read or to write for too long. But fear not! My triumphant return is not far off.

Joey 2 Sheds

Monday, September 04, 2006

Pick of the Week - Week of Aug.30/2006

It's time for this week's picks. Better late than never eh?

Not as many selections this time around as (blasphemous as it may sound) I didn't get to read a lot. But here's a few that I did get to.

The second issue of Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson's "The Boys." I don't want to say too much because I think you should just read this book for yourself, suffice to say it's great. Destined to be classic. Great artwork and fantastic Ennis fare. Definately worth checking out.

52 Week 17: Written by the Beatles of comics. This week we see what's going on up in space with Adam Strange, Animal Man, and Starfire. LOBO! That's what's going on! Very entertaining and I'm very excited as to where this is going.

Teen Titans #38 - Written by Geoff Johns, Pencils by Tony Daniel. This issue we see the Titans travel to Russia and speak with Red Star. We're also given a little peek at some of the titans who made up the team in the missing year. Another solid issue.

Well that's it for what I got to read this week, but here's a few that are sure to be winners: Trials of Shazam #1; Words by Judd Winick, Pictures by Howard Porter. Also, All-Star Superman #5, by Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely.

Well it's time for this week's PICK OF THE WEEK!!! Today, the honors go to... "The 9/11 Report" Written by Sid Jacobson with art by Ernie Colan. Rather than try to cover this here I'll be posting a separate column about this book later in the week after I've read it a few more times. Suffice to say it's brilliant and powerful and you should read it.

That about wraps us up for this week, be sure to tune in next time or I'll release rabid wolverines into your basement!

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Comics Podcasts

I was listening to Augie De Blieck's awesome "Pipeline Comics Podcast" yesterday, and in this particular installment he spoke about Podcasts vs Blogs. Now I don't really have an opinion as to which is better, I love them both and don't think there needs to be a clear winner. However, the column gave me the idea to list a few of my favourite podcasts here and talk a bit about what makes them so good.

Remember, all of these shows can be subscribed to using iTunes or any other podcatcher such as iPodder.

First up, why not?, we have "The Pipeline Comics Podcast." Mr. Augie De Blieck puts this out once a week as a sort of companion to his "Pipeline" column on www.comicbookresources.com. In the show, Augie addresses any breaking news in the comics world and then gives his top 10 of the books he's most excited for that are being released that week. The show usually runs about 10 to 15 minutes and is usually updated on tuesday. You can download the show and read the companion column at http://www.comicbookresources.com

Second, The Collected Comics Library. Created by Chris Marshall, this is a show dedicated to collected editions. Chris speaks about the news on collected edition and whatever other main topic he comes up with and then goes on to the new releases for the week. His website also makes a great companion for the show as it contains checklists for most of the major collected edition lines from the major companies. The show is updated once a week, usually on wednesday, and can be downloaded at http://www.collectedcomicslibrary.com

Next, Raging Bullets: A DC comics fan podcast. Sean Whelan and Jim Segulin produce this review podcast where each week the two go in depth and review a few DC titles. Their endless energy and enthusiasm is always a joy to listen to. Each episode clocks in at clost to 2 hours and they are available at http://www.ragingbullets.com

Next we have some educational fare, The Golden Age of Comics. Created by Bill Jourdain, each week Bill has a show all about a specific character or topic relating to the Golden Age. The show is extremely educational and interesting if you have ANY interest whatsoever in the golden age. The shows can be downloaded from http://www.goldenagecomics.libsyn.com

Wordballoon: The comic book conversation show, presented by John Siuntres. Each week John presents a series of interviews he has recorded with top industry professionals. Just recently the show featured interviews with Ed Brubaker, Brian Michael Bendis, Gail Simone, Howard Chaykin, Greg Rucka and J.M. Dematteis. This show is top notch. The episodes are available at http://www.wordballoon.com

Crank Cast. Crank cast is a weekly show by Chris Crank and industry professional Mike Norton. While not exactly a comic book show per se, it is one of the most entertaining shows out there. Listening to Mike and Crank's discussions is frequently hilarious and always entertaining. They do talk about comics from time to time but they also just talk about... well whatever I guess. Check it out at www.crankcast.com

Finally we come to Around Comics. Around comics is produced by Chris Neseman, Brian Salazar and the very funny Tom Katers. This show is (to quote the boys themselves)a weekly roundtable discussion of topics in and around the world of comics. They record live from Dark Tower comics in Chicago each week and never fail to entertain. Their website is also a great resource which features reviews, news and a fantastic forum community. This show never disappoints. Episodes available at http://www.aroundcomics.com

Well that's all for now, I'll be back either later tonight or tomorrow with my picks of the week, don't forget you can subscribe to this and many many other comics podcasts through iTunes or any other podcatcher.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Pick of the Week - Week of August 23rd, 2006

TONS of great stuff this week! Let's get right to it.

Batman #656 - Written by Grant Morrison, Art by Andy Kubert and Jesse Delperdang.
Well, here is the second issue of the new Morrison Batman, I gotta say... I'm LOVIN' IT! (McDonald's, please email me about the address to send my cheque) It's so great to have Bruce Wayne back. Now I've liked Batman lately, but I've always sort of missed the fun of having Batman AND "millionaire playboy Bruce Wayne." It's great to have, as Morrison put it, the hairy chested love god back. Also, the art in this issue is excellent, which is important because it features Batman fighting an army of ninja MANBATS!!!

Daredevil #88 - Written by Ed Brubaker, Art by David Aja.
This fill in issue picks up after the big reveal in the end of 87, I won't say what that was, but I will say that it took me by surprise and I loved it! This is a great breather from the tremendous action of the past few issues. Now even though it's a breather from the action of "Devil in Cell Block D" that doesn't mean it's not exciting, we have a fight scene with NINJAS!!! (Perhaps a trend is emerging...)

Wonder Woman #2 - Written by Allan Heinberg, Art by Terry and Rachel Dodson.
At last we have the second issue of the new series, now complaints about lateness aside this is a beautiful looking issue. The Dodsons continue to deliver in the art department. The story? I don't know yet... I think this one may read better all at once, we'll just have to wait it out and see.

Flash #3 - Written by Danny Bilson and Paul DeMeo, Art by Karl Kerschl.
Also arriving after a slight delay we have the third issue of the new Flash series. There's a different artist in this issue... Thank GOD! I hate to say it but the art from the previous 2 issues was so poor that I was thinking of dropping this title. The art in this issue is MUCH better and so with that problem solved I could jump right into the story. This is definately the best issue of the series so far, but unfortuneatly that doesn't mean it's that good. Truth be told I'm still bored, despite improving by leaps and bounds from the previous installments, the book still underwhelms. Oh well, we'll keep hoping.

For this weeks Pick of the Week we once again have a tie! I didn't want or expect another tie this week but after a great deal of deliberation (hence this not being up until saturday night) I decided that I couldn't choose one between the two of these:

Justice League of America #1 - Written by Brad Meltzer, Art by Ed Benes and Sandra Hope.
Wow. What a fantastic start to a new Justice League series. The characters are so believable and real, the story is barely begun and it's already compelling, this is as close to a perfect issue as you can get! I haven't been this excited since I read the first issue of Infinite Crisis!!! Within the first couple of pages you can already tell this is a Meltzer comic, his writing style which worked so well in Identity Crisis shines here, in fact it may even be better! The art is nothing short of spectacular, this is the best Benes work I've seen. Benes is an artist truly deserving of more recognition, it's so great to see him on this ultra high profile title! I'm waiting on tenser hooks (whatever the hell those are) for issue #2.

and the other title to share the title this week is:

New Avengers #23 - Written by Brian Michael Bendis, Art by Oliver Coipel.
Oh how I wish Oliver Coipel could be the regular artist on Avengers! The artwork in this issue is really what places it so high in my regard. The panel layout is some of the most creative and exciting to look at I've seen, and the storytelling in his pencils is phenomenal. The story, while nothing truly epic, is really quite cool, giving us an insight into the motivations of Jessica Drew. It's got a lot to be happy about, S.H.I.E.L.D., HYDRA, explosions, everything!

Honorable mention this week needs to go out to 52 #16, while not as important as issue 15 still a consistently good read week in, week out.

Friday, August 25, 2006

When Journalistic integrity goes too far.

Discovered this video and it's subsequent parody on the "around comics" forums this week.

It starts with Tim Leong of the Comics Foundry blog airing his grievances with the latest issue of Wizard magazine... well perhaps 'airing his grievances' is putting it lightly... the man bares his soul for us.

The original video blog

Now my intention here is not to make fun of or slam Mr. Leong, quite the opposite. I believe Mr. Leong to a first class journalist who does a heck of great job on his site.

I understand his points and where he's coming from. Although I do think he takes this a little too seriously, even before the last 2 minutes where it becomes, I'm sorry to say, a little ridiculous. His problems with Wizard asking variations on the same questions to 2 leading ladies 2 issues in a row seem a little ill-founded. It seems reasonable to me that a magazine would ask similar questions regarding the progress of a movie being made. Aren't most interviews basically variations on similar questions? It feels like a bit of stretch.

As for his complaints about the introduction to the Bendis/Cho interview? I can agree that the opening paragraph seems a little forced and out of place. Was I disgusted? No, I'd say I was more amused. It was completely ridiculous sensationalism but I don't think it was terribly malicious. Immature, but not malicious.

I now would like to direct your attention to Ed Brubaker's myspace page. A friend of Mr. Brubaker has parodied Mr. Leong's video in order to promote Ed's new creator owned series: "Criminal". This is a great example of the use of parody to advertise.

Brubaker's Parody

I want to point out that Mr. Leong in fact links the parody in a later post on the blog, demonstrating just how classy a guy he is. It's great to see someone able to laugh at themselves like that, the man has my utmost respect.