Saturday, September 20, 2014

All-Star Squadron and The Sub-Mariner

I was looking over some issues of All-Star Squadron the other day and it struck me what a value each issue was.  Not only did you get lot's of heroes for your money, and great artwork by the likes of Jerry Ordway, Adrian Gonzales and Joe Kubert, the stories themselves were very dense.  Roy Thomas's love and knowledge of comics' golden age was clear with his very detailed scripts.  The artist were up to the task of interpreting his tales, and it was not uncommon to find 6 or more panels per page.  These comics felt like a full meal, not just a snack like too many of today's series with decompressed writing and large paneled pages that seem more concerned about original art resale than storytelling.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Power Man and Icon

I always thought it was odd that DC's Milestone Imprint was separated from the mainstream DCU titles when it first hit the scene.  I can understand the creators wanting to stake out their own territory, but in the end I think that decision hurt sales.  Many years later, the Milestone characters were more fully integrated into the DCU, with appearances in Justice League  and Teen Titans, but perhaps it was a case of too little too late because they didn't seem to make much of a splash.  It's too bad because there are a lot of cool characters to be mined.  Let's hope they get some more chances to shine.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Daredevil and Usagi Yojimbo


A great thing about the comic community - fans and pros alike - is that they stick together in times of need.  One such instance is the with Stan Sakai, the creator of Usagi Yojimbo.  Sakai's wife has been battling a debilitating brain tumor, and to help with the substantial medical bills, many talented artists have contributed original art featuring his most famous creation.  The art was auctioned off and many of the pieces are featured in The Sakai Project, an publication produced in association with The Comic Art Professional Society.  All of the proceeds from this over-sized book got to Stan and Sharon Sakai, and it can be ordered here:

The Sakai Project

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The Spectre and Hellboy

Emmet Scanlan has been cast in the role of Jim Corrigan on NBC's upcoming Constantine Series.  No word yet whether Corrigan will eventually be killed off and return as The Spectre, but it will be an awful tease if the show runners don't give The Spirit of Vengeance a shot.  They have hinted at characters like Doctor Fate as well, so I think there's a good chance I will get my wish - provided the series is a hit and runs long enough.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Batman and U.S.Agent

This is one of those pairings that I have wanted to do for years, since the early days of Brave and the Bold: The Lost Issues, but I never got around to it until now.  I am not sure of what U.S.Agent's current status is in the Marvel Universe, but I have enjoyed his appearances throughout the years.  I especially liked when he would work with Captain America's usual allies, and seeing their reaction to a shield-slinger with a decidedly different personality.

Monday, September 15, 2014

The Unknown Soldier and Captain America

Cap has recently been taken out of the uniform again, with Sam Wilson filling in as the shield-slinging Avenger.  Stuck in the body of a senior citizen, it's just a matter of time before Steve Rogers gets rejuvenated and assumes the mantle once again.  With Chris Evans contracted for at least three more film appearances, that's pretty much a certainty.  Once this Falcon/Cap arc is over, I hope that Marvel gives the whole recurring "Cap gets replaced" theme a rest.  It's a plot device they have gone to many times over the past few decades and I would like to see Steve Rogers get a nice uninterrupted run as Captain America for a change.

By the way today's cover  has repercussions that will be felt tomorrow, so stay tuned!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Thor Vs. Sauron

If there is one superhero that would be right at home in Middle Earth, it would be Thor.  He's got the wardrobe, the elevated speech patterns, the signature weapon, even the good sense to wear a helmet when going into battle.  If only someone would give the movie Thor the helmet memo.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Red Robin and Red Hulk

I have long been on record about feeling that there is too much duplication of characters, and the multiple Hulks and Robins running around are some of the prime culprits.  Still, I have to admit that there have been some fun stories involving these two guys.  It all depends on the creative team, after all.  Even so, my preference would be to have Thunderbolt Ross as his old military self, and Tim Drake as the third (or even second) Robin.  I don't know if those genies are ever going back into the bottle though....

Friday, September 12, 2014

Data and The Vision

The first close look at The Vision from Avengers: The Age of Ultron has been leaked, and I very much like what I see.  Sure I could nitpick - the  high collar and belt are missing and the simple diamond chest emblem seems to have been replaced with a more busy one - but for all intents and purposes, The Paul Bettany Vision looks very close to the comic character that I have read about for years.  I hope he gets plenty of screen time, despite being the new guy on the block.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Justice League of America and The Micronauts

OK, so The Transformers seem to rake in the box office receipts despite critical reaction, isn't it time for a Micronauts movie?  A live action trip to the Microverse could be very cool.  Maybe if Ant-Man is a hit for Marvel, audiences will be ready for more action in miniature.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

The Bondsmen Return!

Of these four, I'd have to think that Doc Savage is the best suited to take over for Batman, but it would be interesting to see any of them assume the mantle.

Nick Fury has just gone through some major changes due to the end of  Marvel's Original Sin event.

 *** Spoilers ***

With the death of Uatu, Fury has become a Watcher-type character called The Unseen.  I don't get it when comic companies combine two cool characters to create one new one - it never seems to work.  This move kind of feels like the Hal Jordan Spectre all over again.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Spider-Man and Jimmy Olsen

I finally caught The Amazing Spider-Man 2 on Blu-Ray and while there are moments of great potential in there, the film seemed to be a wasted opportunity for the most part.  There were things I liked a lot - the new costume is the best live action Spidey suit to date, Gwen's fate was handled nicely, and the special effects looked great for the most part.  The story, however, was a mess and seemed to repeat past mistakes of other films.  Electro looked like Mr. Freeze and had the same back story as The Riddler, giving his whole arc a Joel Schumaker vibe.  The Green Goblin was a boring retread with an even worse costume than the first two times, and the Rhino was barely there with a way-over the top performance from the usually reliable Paul Giamatti.  On top of all of that, too much time is spent on the mystery of Peter's parents, which after two movies I still don't care about.  I hope that some real reevaluation is done before bringing The Amazing Spider-Man 3 to life.

Monday, September 8, 2014

The Human Torch and Nightwing

Dick Grayson has dropped yet another superheroic identity and now operates undercover in a series titled simply Grayson, adding a new wrinkle to the career of comicdom's original sidekick.  The aging and replacing of Robins in the DCU has been one of the main problems when trying to streamline continuity, and I don't see that improving any time soon.  For the New 52 reboot, I think DC would perhaps been better served by de-aging Dick Grayson and returning him either to his Robin role or his first days as Nightwing, with a young Tim Drake  assuming the mantle.  They could still have reintroduced Jason or Damian eventually, but with all of Batman's partners running around simultaneously, it just clutters and dilutes the concept in my opinion - not to mention being anything but new reader friendly.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Kamandi meets Sub-Mariner and The Hulk

I always got a kick out of seeing Namor and The Hulk interact, whether they were working together or at odds with one another.  Namor had a nasty temper and a bad attitude towards the surface world, and no character other than The Hulk could match him in that department.  The Hulk claimed to be the strongest one there is and got his way with brute force, but Namor was one of the few that could stand up to his might. These aspects gave their relationship an interesting dynamic.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Wonder Woman Vs. Judge Dredd

Brian Bolland has always left me wanting more as far as his interiors go, but I guess I can understand that the amount of care and detail that he includes means he won't produce as much work as some other artists.  He makes up for it with his stunning cover work though.  Whether it's on a standard superhero comic or something in more of a Vertigo vein, his visuals always make me stop and take a closer look... which is exactly what a great cover should do.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Batman and Man-Thing in "Burning the Evidence!"

Man-Thing has been name-checked on Agents of Shield, and while I am sure that was mostly a nod to the fans, it would be fun for him to show up there.  I don't know if he could carry his own Marvel movie, but appearances in a couple episodes of the TV series could be very cool... and help to erase the memories of the unfortunate made-for-TV film from some years back.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

The Defenders and The Defenders of the Earth

I remember seeing The Defenders of the Earth for the first time and it really appealed to the crossover fan in me.  The Phantom, Mandrake and Flash Gordon seemingly had nothing to do with each other, representing different types of heroes and coming from different eras.  That just made it all the more intriguing to see them together.  It was ideas like that which inspired this blog.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Superman Vs. Annihilus

Annihilus has always been one of my favorite Marvel villains.  His insect-like design creeped me out in a good way, I could see why any hero would be intimidated when he showed up.  Plus he came from The Negative Zone, where the laws of our universe have no bearing.  I'd love to see him make the leap to live action someday (provided that the Fantastic Four ever get a proper portrayal as well).

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Mary Marvel and Marvelman

Marvelman is a character and series that I always wanted to get into, but never got the chance.  The series was not available around where I lived when it was originally in print, and then legal battles prevented new editions once I had plenty of comic shops to choose from. Finally, the chance has come around again to discover these stories, and I look forward to seeing what all the fuss was about.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Vs. Deadpool and Bane

Despite the fact that word of mouth was less than stellar, the newest Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film seemed to do well at the box office, so audiences can count on another installment of the Michael Bay-produced franchise.  The somewhat creepy design of the leads was a turn-off for me, so I decided to make this one a rental. For me, the CGI animated TMNT is still the best the Turtles have looked onscreen.

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