Lois Lane: Clueless

I was looking through some old Lois Lane comics (Yes, Ladies! I'm single!) and came across this beauty of a cover:

Did Woody Allen write this?

Yes, that's about as awesome of a Lois Lane "Buy me to see what's going on!" romance cover as you can get, considering that Superman has not only married Lois Lane (old hat), but he has adopted his cousin, who honestly seems pretty stoked with the whole idea. (*shudder*) Bonus: You just know Lois is going to tear off into a Catastrophic Jealous Lois Freak-Out at some point during the story. I can only hope it involves a Kryptonite frying pan.

Props to my man 'Supes for the strategic positioning of the newspaper, though. Been there, done that. Lois never saw a thing. Smooth, Bro!

I know I have to filter this through the innocence of those Wacky Silver Age Stories, but - seriously?!? Did this one totally get a pass? And if this, like most LL comics, was really targeted to teenage girls, was the dilemma, "Now that he's adopted a fellow Kryptonian, someone who (*choke*) is more like him and better than me ... someone who is ... (*sob*) prettier and younger than me... (*sob*) what chance do I have of keeping him?"

"I....I...I'm still happy. I am. I'm happy! Hap..(*choke*)..py!"

That's a great cover. Man, I love old Lois Lane comics! (Hi, Ladies!)

Anyhoo..., because Lois seems a bit more clueless than usual on this one, and because it's absolutely, positively begging for a joke ... here we go!

Betcha thought I was going to really dirty that one up, didn't ya?

(ehh.. believe it or not, a "Superman Supergirl Lois threeway" Google image search is surprisingly barren. Huh. Funny, that!)

(Hi, Googlers!)

A Terrible Force has been Unleashed!

Sims has doomed us all.

Pity the poor Pixies.

(I really should've fur-lined the Gauntlet itself, just for more funny. But, I'm feeling lazy. Oh well...)

Tuesday Already?

Boy, that was a fun vacation! Not that I actually did anything, but I certainly had fun doing nothing! Well, not nothing, per say... but... um let's just say that I probably won't be frequenting a certain bar again anytime in the near future.

(Psst! Wanna know the warning signs that you've probably overdid it a bit? When your "Oh, just for a few hours" bar trip turns into a 2-day incident involving three cops, two bar fights, 4 dogs, a $125 bar tab, 3 strange women doing very strange things, a couple of hours where you forgot where your car is parked - but it's probably for the best that way, telling a perfect stranger that sure, you'll bail him out of jail - and knowing there's no way in hell you're going to do it, repeatedly calling one girl "Squiggy" because you can't remember her real name - and it seemed to suit her somehow, and waking up to learn that you had crazy-glued little plastic dinosaurs on the ceiling above your bed. Oh, and throwing up on the dog. Twice, I think. S'hard to tell, really.)

(FYI: No incident involving police, jail, or bar fights had anything to do with me. But it was fun to watch the drama of them all.)

Anyway, now that vacation's over, what's the first order of business?


umm.. can I take away his credit cards?

Whelp, still recovereing, so we'll make this one a quickie. For now.

(Above panel is from Lois Lane #4 (1959), a comic that I simply must own, and is quite possibly the first time the word "blog" was ever used.)

(And many thoughts, prayers, and good wishes to Adam, who lost a very close friend over the weekend. You did good, man. From the moment you first set eyes on him, you did good.)

Happy 2nd!

Extremely rare 3rd Post!

For Bully:

Happy 2nd!

(It's an onion ring. She got a treat. And the Onion Ring. She's a good dog.)

Off Topic: Baseball

Congratulations to The Atlanta Braves' very own John Smoltz!!!

With tonight's win over their divisional rivals, the Mets, Smoltzy became the first pitcher ever to get 200 wins and 150 saves!! Ever. That's a big deal by itself, right there. Clear off his shelf at the Hall of Fame! Whenever he decides to retire, that is...

As a longtime Braves fan and an even longer baseball fan, I can testify that Mr. Smoltz is one of those guys that you want your kids to emulate. A class act, funny, a nice guy (met him once), and he just plain loves making a (long, long) living playing a kids game. Great, great guy - that kind of professional athlete you want to be in the forefront and succeed through the cameras.

Smoltz is a great representative, a great competitor, head and shoulders above being a fantastic pitcher, and one of the reasons I grew up loving the Braves. Congrats again, John!

(The fact that he went against long-time Brave (current Met) and equally great pitcher in my eyes, Tom Glavine, made this a fantastic game. I know - just know - that Tommy was the among first to shake John's hand tonight.)

(Oh, and John also handed his manager, Bobby Cox, win number 2,199. Not too shabby...)

Washing a Dead Horse

Last one to pull from the MJ statue thing, I promise.


Y'know - I could clip Lois out of that panel and make it look like she's falling from a building.

Imagine if Greg Land drew this particular "Superman Spanking Lois" panel. Seriously. You can picture her face, can't you? You know you can.

Most Wanted

This marks the first time that I'm going to have to cheat a little bit on this weekly feature. Of the 7 books I bought, there was one that I clearly looked forward to reading above any of the others. It wasn't even close. But, since I reviewed The Spirit a mere two Most Wanted's ago, I'm going to go with my second choice this time. I guess I'll have to figure out a new rule for weeks like this... maybe I'll skip a week sometimes, or always take the second choice, or something.

Anyway, this isn't to say that I'm going through the dreck here... far from it! Although it doesn't bring me to the level of anxiousness that The Spirit does, this is a very, very good comic:

Criminal #6
Writer: Ed Brubaker
Artist: Sean Phillips

This issue marks the beginning of the second story arc of this fantastic crime drama series, which makes it a great time to jump on (nudge nudge). Interestingly enough, the different story arcs really have nothing to do with each other - aside from the underlying crime element. So everything's new again, and you have no excuse not to pick this up.

This time around, our story starts us off with Tracy Lawless (heh), an A.W.O.L. special ops military bad-ass trying to piece together exactly how his estranged brother, Rick, died while he was stuck serving time in a military prison. Tracy, not Rick. Since Rick was a lifetime criminal, Tracy goes undercover and starts to insert himself into his brother's old gang. Brutally.

That's the quickie set-up. But there's much more background tidbits presented and it's executed so well that you really have to read it to get the proper feel. This is a heavily narrated book, and as moody as a late night mobster dock-side heist. In fact, halfway through the book, there is a late night mobster dock-side heist. If you like crime noir or character-driven drama, then you will love this book. It's a great break from all the super-hero madness that you normally get infected with every week. And it's some of Brubaker's best writing, ever. Art's pretty spot-on, too.

Great setup, great starting point, and it's looking like another really enjoyable arc for this excellent title.

Most Wanted Panel:

Heh. Sorry.

Sometimes the Photoshop jokes come late...

Love ya, AH.. really! This one was just too easy...

I really need to sleep now. Beh.!

Solicitations! Buy Their Crap!

Hey kids! Let's have a li'l gander into DC's August solicitations (courtesy of CBR), shall we? (click on that link for bigger pictures than I'm posting here, if they interest you. Like if you want Power Girl boobie closeups, or whatnot) It was fun last time! Wheee!

First off, I can't help but notice that there's no All Star Batman and Robin entry. I'm shocked. Shocked. And stunned.

I know I shouldn't, but I like that cover. I think it's the whole Zatanna / Mary / Stage Magic dynamic. I'm a sucker for those two characters. And a top hat scene. It's drawn real purty, too.

But, Good Googly-Moogly!, is that ever a short skirt, Mary!!

Written by Adam Beechen and Justin Gray
Art by Eddy Barrows, Fabrizio Fiorentino & Julio Ferreira
Cover by Ivan Reis & Oclair Albert
Flying out of the pages of 52, it's Adam Strange, Starfire and Animal Man in an explosive new series! Now that they've returned to their respective homes, where do they go from here? Find out what the future holds for these heroes in the DCU!
And in the 8-page backup, from the pages of COUNTDOWN, it's a tale of Forerunner! Find out more about this awesome new character and her relationship with the Monitors.
On sale August 29 o 1 of 8 o 48 pg, FC, $3.99 US Edited by Eddie Berganza

Let the unnecessary big event cross-overs ... Begin!

And Devon has it right - keep Starfire in space, team her up with Adam Strange and make her DC comic's Barbarella. That sounds about right to me.

Written by Geoff Johns & Jeff Katz
Art and cover by Dan Jurgens
& Norm Rapmund
Exploding from the pages of 52 and exploring the timeline of the DC Universe comes a new monthly book featuring the greatest super-hero history will never know: Booster Gold!
Following the universe altering conclusion of 52, Booster Gold wants what's due to him - a spot on the Justice League of America! But the time stream's in trouble, and Booster Gold is in the center of it! Now he must make a choice: reclaim his former glory or do the right thing, forgoing the credit.
ALL-NEW Booster Gold will take you through time and space, to the greatest moments of the DCU that have happened and will happen.
"52 Pick-Up" begins in this extra-sized issue #1! Someone is exploiting the ravaged time stream, hoping to eliminate the world's greatest heroes - and only Booster Gold can stop them. But, really - Booster Gold? Why him? What does Rip Hunter truly want? And what shocking figure is behind it all?
And coming up in the months ahead in DC's time spanning monthly: the world's greatest Green Lantern - Sinestro, Jonah Hex, Barbara "Batgirl" Gordon, Flash and Kid Flash, and plenty more of DC's super stars from throughout its past and future!
For a signed edition, please see the Dynamic Forces section of Previews.
On sale August 15 o 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US Edited by Michael Siglain

I'm thinking this could be great. Heck, this could be fantastic. It's a great concept, and it could function to let the readers explore the new DC universe in a very clever way.

But, I'm real wary about it. It could just as easily do a lot of damage. Wait and see...



Get ready for FIVE OF A KIND - five issues, five top creative teams, one team-up per week, as Batman takes control of the Outsiders by using these adventures to pick his new lineup!

If ever there was a gimmicky series... here ya go. Wow. The gimmicky-esque gimmick to ever mick a gimm. (HaHa! That one was for me!) Weekly team-ups, different talent, pulling from the previous big company gimmick, an all-Batman tie in, with the end result creating a new series? I'm suprised there's no 1-900 number for readers to call in and vote.

Written by Peter Milligan
Art by David Lopez & Alvaro Lopez
Cover by Tim Sale
The definitive origin of Ra's al Ghul, Batman's greatest foe, is finally revealed in this annual from writer Peter Milligan (JLA CLASSIFIED, X-Static) and the art team of David Lopez & Alvaro Lopez (CATWOMAN)! A deadly rivalry between two immortals spanning more than 400 years of history causes a chain reaction that not even Batman could have predicted! Learn how the secret past of this legendary villain has a reverberating effect on the future of the Dark Knight.
On sale August 29 o 48 pg, FC, $3.99 US Edited by Jeanine Schaefer

*Sigh* I know I've mentioned this before, but with some characters It's better not to know the origin, despite how popular they've become! Jeez, people! Some characters just work better with that mystique: Joker, Wolverine, (and Mystique, come to think of it.. heh), Phantom Stranger, and absolutely, definitely, Freckin' Ra's al Ghul! Gah!

Written by Kurt Busiek
Art and cover by Walter Simonson
An extra-sized spectacular featuring art by Walter Simonson, as Superman goes to Hell - literally - during the most nightmarish adventure of his heroic career, and a dread portent of that which may be coming! Who, or what, is "The Beast from Krypton"? This issue - featuring the Phantom Stranger, Zatanna, the Demon and a host of other DC superstars from Wonder Woman to Animal Man - is guaranteed to send chills down your spine!
For a signed edition, please see the Dynamic Forces section of Previews.
On sale August 8 o 48 pg, FC, $3.99 US

I believe I'll be getting this one, even though I normally don't get Superman titles. Except for that one. It'll nicely bookend my upcoming Batman #666. Plus, it has the Phantom Stranger, Zatanna, and Animal Man - three of my favorite characters. And that Walt Simonson cover is creepy as hel.. opps.. heck.

Written by Jimmy Palmiotti & Justin Gray
Art and cover by Koi Turnbull & Sandra Hope
An early adventure of Superman from art sensation Koi Turnbull (Black Panther, Fathom) and the writing team of Jimmy Palmiotti & Justin Gray! The fate of Metropolis is at stake when Superman gets mixed up with Lori Lemaris!
On sale August 29 o 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US

DC mentions two rival companies as the previous works from Koi Turnbull. It might be just because those are the only two you can mention, or might be his best works. I don't know. But, I seem to have noticed that Marvel does not do this. I might be wrong, but I can't think of an example of Marvel giving a credit that involved a DC book. Hmmm...


Does anyone buy these? I mean, people must or it wouldn't be here, but isn't this just a coffee table book for friends and relatives that won't understand it at all? Sure, there's some great covers here.. but is there actually a market for a Hard Cover book full of funnybook covers? Just askin'

Written by Marc Guggenheim
Art by Tony S. Daniel & Art Thibert
Cover by Doug Braithwaite
Variant cover by Daniel Acuña
Continuing the storyline so explosive we can't give anything away - and it's destined to be one of the most talked-about tales of 2007!
Retailers please note: This issue will ship with two covers in approximately 50/50 ratio. Standard Edition A features a cover by Doug Braithwaite, while Standard Edition B features a cover by Daniel Acuña. Please see the Previews Order Form for more information.
Fans: Remind your retailer early and often to order you a copy!
On sale August 15 o 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US

Barry Allen Alert!

Wouldn't it be a great inside joke if this book was late?!

(Only people reading a comics blog will laugh at that. Trust me, though. It's funny.)


Is this because of the wedding thing? That's a lot of GA/BC action there. I'm assuming it includes that awkward torture/rape scene in Green Arrow. I forget which issue that was in.

But a Diggle/Jock Green Arrow series.. hmmm... Might get that one.

That's a real fun cover, there. Really pulls you in.

I used to own every individual comic contained in these trades.

Used to.

I'm with Rachelle on this one- Please, please DC... Make this into a poster. I'll give you a foot massage....

Yes, I will be buying this. Oh, yes. That's a thing of beauty, right there.

Likewise, I may pick this one up just based on that cover, though I don't normally get the DC Cartoon stuff.. But, man! That's a wicked funny cover idea! Tell me you don't want to read what happens in that funnybook!

Whoo, boy! Ummm... There really is a market for these things. The terrorists have already won.

Still.. get a toy robot, a rubber octopus, and a little bit of string for bondage... you've got yourself some Hentai action fun!

Oh, God.. too much comedy ... Ack... Overload!... Brain hurts...

OK, got it. Think I'm going to go with this:


DC Toy Dept: We've got this great idea for a 13" Power Girl Deluxe!
DC Exec: Really? Sounds good! PG always sells to the fanboys! Gonna make her teh sexay?!?
DC Toy Dept: Oh, you bet! Fully articulated.. know what I mean? Nudge Nudge...
DC Exec: Nice geek reference! OK, I'm sold - what do we charge? $20?!?
DC Toy Dept: Did we mention that Power Girl's wearing an actual fabric costume over her nude plastic body?
DC Exec: ....
DC Exec: ....
DC Toy Dept: It's removable....
DC Exec: ....
DC Exec: ....
DC Toy Dept: Classic easy-fanboy-access Peek-A-Boo Cleavage Window....
DC Exec: ............. Umm.. OK ... Sorry 'bout that. *whew* OK... (Did I mention that I love you guys?) OK... I'm thinking $50!
DC Toy Dept: Did we also mention that she's "Realistically Proportioned?!?"
DC Exec: Ding Ding!!! $70!!!

That said.. I want one. I'm shallow like that.

And I know .... KNOW ... that if I bought one there would be someone in the LCS asking if I would take it out of the box before I leave to "look at it."

Yes. That would happen.


Season one ended tonight.

Great ride! I will be very close to the first in line to owning this series when it hits DVD. But I knew that after about 3 episodes.

Finale? Not ground-breaking, not too many Fuck YEAH moments like I wanted, but all in all.. excellent. Logical. Got it - and it fits. This show just .. umm.. *fits* super powers into an otherwise normal universe. It's NewUniversial for TV. And probably the greatest weekly suspense series for this particular comic geek in a long, long time (thinking late '80s Flash, as last time). It was consistently the office water cooler talk for my job from guys that hated comics initially. Guys I turned this series onto. In fact, I have fellow employees asking about similar comics based on their love for this show. Pushes the medium, I can testify.

So.. I know I'm kinda preaching to the choir here.. but if you've been putting this show off.. trust me and rent it when the season comes out. Or wait for the Sci-Fi Channel marathon to get into it. It's fantastic. Seriously.

Loved the ending. Wish it was a bit "bigger" though... but still, I'm a' happy!


Yes, I know I didn't post Friday. And yes, this is a quickie just to get something out there before I fall too behind.

See, the reason is that tonight is the 2-hour finale of 24 AND the finale of the 1st season of Heroes, two shows I've been following with a passion since the beginning. I'm not going to even try to ignore them and post anything close to substantial tonight. Maybe after.

So instead, here's the weirdest, most off-center WTF? Bazooka Joe comic you'll ever read.

(And, it's a modern one. You may find it yourself one of these days!)

Seriously... someone thought that was funny? Kid-funny? Huh. I'm confused.

(And, Heroes?!? Don't let me down, guys. You've nicely set up The Potential to end with The Awesome... Bring it home, now! Wow me.)

Evan Dorkin: Parallel Thinker

I'm reading through the last of my Free Comic Book Day haul and I finally get around to Bongo's entry, The Bongo Comics Free-for-All! 2007. It's a great 5-part Simpsons / Futurama 1-shot compliation - the kind that always manages to give me a chuckle. The first story - written by Evan "Bring Me the Head of Boba Fett" Dorkin - is about Bart winning a five minute shopping spree running the greed gauntlet in Krusty's Toyland. Word eventually gets out to the other kids and - 'Lo and behold! What are all those little bits of paper about...

Click for Mongo size

Ha! Ha-Ha!

Mr. Dorkin must be a blog lurker. Hi, Evan!

Things get worse at school...

...and in the gym...

...and at lunch.

Poor Bart! He even gets harassed at the Android's Dungeon!

Click to CBG size!

Awwww.. Bart can't catch a break.

This was quite unexpected! Thanks, Evan! Vindication! See, everyone has a Want List! What say you, Bart?


Ralph Wiggum Bonus Panel Goodness:

That's unpossible.

Most Wanted

Well, it really came down to the two issues I thought it would this week... the two that after a year's wait, both came out at the same time (I lost a bet, incidentally). I find that I'm merely curious about Mr. Miller's take on the Dark Knight. I still don't think I "get it" the way he wants me to. However, once I got Mr. Millar's last issue in my hand.... yeah, I'm reading that one first.

The Ultimates 2 #13
Writer: Mark Millar
Pencils: Bryan Hitch
Inks: Paul Neary

But first, I actually had to go and dig out my copy of #12 and re-read that first. It's been so long that I completely forgot where we left off. Turns out this is the big Loki/Thor smackdown. I can deal with that.

This issue is really a big-ass fight scene and cleanup for the next volume. And it's real pretty. I can completely understand why (if this is indeed the case) Hitch took his time with this one. The amount of detail is incredible. There are pages here that must've taken weeks to draw. Good, good stuff.

Millar's really an on-again / off-again writer for me. But, I believe he's at his best when he gets to write as if it's a big-budget summer blockbuster movie and he gets to make it all up from the beginning. Which is, of course, exactly what The Ultimates lets him do. If this thing was filmed, it would cost billions. The over-the-top destruction works really well here. And because he's basically able to re-design the characters, he can make them fit in this world and not have to shoe-horn them into a pre-designed plot role, as I think he had to do with Civil War. This is Millar's Thor, Hawkeye, Cap and the gang, and they work in this context. His Loki in particular is great, and quite the threat. As he should be. Why limit him, as writers have to do in the main Marvel U - he's a friggin' God, for Pete's sake!

(By the way, was it just me, or were there some really subtle tongue in cheek Civil War references buried in this? Re-read Tony's later dialog bits and see if you agree.)

Great action comic, and a fantastic way to end the series. Both of them were great. I'm really on the fence about getting volume 3, but this one left a good enough taste in my mouth that I'll certainly check it out. Millar pretty much handed it over on a silver platter to the next team.

Much Wanted Panel:

(You know which one. But no way am I going to try and scan that massive centerfold spread. But, I am going to buy another copy of this issue so I can yank that whole thing out and find a way to frame it. Gonna need a long frame, though....)

Off-Panel Monkey-Business

I'm currently reading the Superman Family DC Showcase:

You can probably expect more of these.

And I should apologize now.

It Just Came to Me. Really. Dang Brain!

OK, I apologize in advance. But you will laugh. Oh, yes.

And, honestly... How can I not let that new Mary Jane statue-thingy go un-challenged! Really! S'not my fault! Staring at it sorta triggered the conversation.

And stare I did.

(wait for it...)

Sometimes you just have to look upon your works and say quitely to yourself. "Yes. Yes, you did good. Laugh again."

I like to think these two have sit-com-ish conversations.

Oh! Before I forget! Congratulations to Mr. Alan Moore and Mrs. Melinda Perry Gebbie, who tied that knot this last weekend. Presumably some kind of strange mind-fuck was involved with the vows and the ceremony. Would've loved to have seen that. Anyway.. best of wishes to a man who not only is .. well, ALAN FUCKIN' MOORE, but had the absolute fantastic taste of having everyone involved wearing what could be the best wedding ensemble ever.

If you're gonna do it, do it in style! Looking great, man!

(link goes to Neil Gaiman's camera phone shots / blog entry. Fantastic! Good luck to ya both!)

(And Heroes is gonna be a bloodbath tonight...)

Friday Night Quickie

Nothing springs to me mind to blog about tonight , but here's me trying to get better at Photoshop....


(6 Year Old photo of my doggies at play. Honestly, at play. They're funny.)

Here's me going all Alex Maleev / David Mack on it:

I kinda like it! This is promising...

(Took forever. But, I'm learning.)

Well.. off to a dog walk / Little league game!

Oh! Now I Get it!

Click for Big, Badly Scanned Wrap-Around Goodness

Way back in 1982, I bought this fabulous li'l humor one-shot. In it, heroes and villains alike all show up at some gala banquet hall to lob verbal pot-shots, puns and bon mots at the Fantastic Four, who thought this was a "Fantastic Four Toast" before they arrived. I was 12 at the time, which was the perfect age for the goofy humor the great Mr. Fred Hembeck fills this book with.

I seriously forgot I had this until I was sorting through some boxes far back in the recesses of my closet. I remember liking it a lot as a kid (S'why why I've kept it all these years), and wondered if the humor held up after all these years. And Brother, I gotta tell you, it's Fantastic! (Pun intended - goes with the book's humor)

The jokes are fun and charming, definitely clever and they fly at you faster than Lindsey Lohan after hearing the words, "Free Coke! Over Here!" At the same time, they're also juvenile and at times groan- inducing bad. In other words, classic Hembeck, and right after my tastes. For example, here's Howard:

And check out this piece of greatness:

Click to Hulkify

Admit it, you're chuckling! When I was 12, I would've laughed at She-Hulk's "Lettuce Lips!" comment. Or Hulk's cute little glasses. Now that I'm older, I notice that Shulkie's in her 1980s tattered lab-coat look while at a black tie event. And I love the Hulk's purple tux. And how he gets Machine Man to laugh. And that Black Bolt is only smirking. Tell me that isn't clever! Those aren't accidental (Hembeck did the breakdowns), and it's exactly the kind of geek humor I want in my funnybooks. Man, I love Hembeck. I think I'll add a link to his web page on the right over there...

As much as I love the hard-core comic geek references, I still seriously laugh at the silly bits that the 12-year old in me loved. I yelled out a big one after Doom's "Wrong! Camel Breath!" That's funny, right there. I don't care how old you are. Speaking of Doom, we also get a little bit of insight to the ...um.. softer side of Doom:

Click for Doom!

Just think, we were one missed panty-raid away from a freckin' awesome What If? book. You know you'd buy that, fanboy!

After re-reading it, there was one panel that really caught me off guard. Precisely because it had a joke that I would never have understood at 12. In fact, I almost missed it this time around. But once I got it...

God bless you, Mr. Hembeck:

(If you don't get it ... and you'll kick yourself ... think about the character that's doing the drinking)

I stared at that panel for 2 minutes, wondering where the joke was. Then beer flew out of my nose, appropriately enough.

There's a cute tie-things-together plot about a mystery villain trying to take this opportunity to destroy the FF, which ends with a great comedy reveal. After that is dealt with, the bad jokes continue and it ends absolutely the best way it possibly could:

Don't click at all.

(The joke? "Things for the Memories." This book Rocks. Opps! There I go again!)


Seriously, if you don't already own this issue.... go find it. Just make sure to time your beverage intake for between the panels.

Most Wanted

Not many books offered this week that I particularly wanted - I only picked up 5 books. Not very many for me. And, unfortunately, all of them were pretty typical. And because I'm trying not to double up these posts and write about Y: The Last Man again (though, I must confess, I'm really looking forward to that one), there was another book that piqued my interest enough to consider it this week's most wanted.

That's a three page wrap-around cover that I'm too lazy to scan properly. It's spiffy.

Countdown #51
Writer: Paul Dini
Pencils: Jesus Saiz
Inks: Jimmy Palmiotti

This was basically an all set-up issue for a title that I'll most likely be buying for the next year - the first batch of plot threads was established, essentially. So, let's do this with bullet points, much like I did last week for this book's parent, 52:

- First of all, I have to say it. $3.00?!?! C'mon! That's $156, all told!! DC, you really could've scored some major fan points and kept it at $2.50. Or, if you really wanted me to love you a bit more, $2.00 would have been noticed. And applauded. And written about here. So, you'd have like four people reading my praises of you.

(That said, you got me. So, I suppose you're right to raise it. Damn you.)

- Nice cover.

- Awwww yeah... Page one is already with the Fourth World stuff. Bring it on!

- Desaad is done well. Dini gets him.

- Darkseid spash page! My Apokolips tattoo is tingling!

- Who is the pawn piece in the ball cap and fur-lined coat? Hmmm...

- Paul Dini is writing the Joker's daughter. Repeat that. The guy who created Harley Quinn is writing the Joker's daughter. This is gonna rock.

- And it does. She's great. Lame gizmos, though.

- Huh. I thought Mary Batson was about 8ish when not Mary Marvel. Actually, that's kind of a relief, knowing that this is coming later. And the "Shazam." rainstorm scene was great.

- Classic Rogue's Gallery! My, my!

- That in-house promo ad for this very book - the one where some indigo chick is sporting the "WWMMD?" button? A) Who is that? (guessing a new Eclipso) and B) how is that button pinned to her naked boobie?

- OK, one cool gizmo: Silly-String Taser. That's funny.

- Monitors. Interesting. Well, the multiverse is back, so that makes sense. Well placed.

- Source Wall. Awesome.

- Ray Palmer?!? OK, you've got me hooked. I'll be here next week.

So, we've got 4-5 (some are already interlacing) plots set up. All solid, all interesting to me with very good art to bring it home. That's the way to ensure you're gonna get my $150, DC. Bravo (and dang it!). Keep it consistent - especially the art, and you've got yourselves a winner - and a completely new way of marketing comics successfully, all told.

I understand Paul Dini (whom I trust as a writer explicitly) already has the whole thing written out in a huge 200+ page tome somewhere. If that's true, this shouldn't be nearly as disjointed as 52 felt at times. Indeed, this issue sets up its multiple plots much, much more solidly than 52 did. Part of that is because it's starting from a much more solid beginning, and the ending of 52 is pretty much responsible for that. After the first issue of 52, my thoughts were, "Huh. A bit confusing, but interesting. Decent enough to hold my interests for a few more of these - see where they go with it..." After the first issue of Countdown, I'm stoked. This is very promising. I hope the lack of a breakdowns guy doesn't make the art inconsistent from week to week.. but so far, so good!

I'm actually looking forward to a weekly comic. Who would've thunk it?

Most Wanted Panel

Yes. Yes, let's.


This one's for Adam...

If only this were true...

I knew it! Ha!

Straight from Grant Morrison himself:

I'd also like to point out here that my character the Bulleteer CANNOT FLY! Repeat BULLETEER CANNOT FLY!
Hope that settles it.

Everybody Loves ROM!

Too easy...

Fly me to the moooon...

That's some ham-fisted writing there, Mr. Mantlo!

(I love it.)

Shocking Origin Issue!

So after seeing Spider-man 3 (a mixed bag, but overall a pretty enjoyable popcorn movie) and reading Mike's post I started to think about super-hero origins. Specifically, which ones of the "classics" honestly hold up after all these years, actually make logical sense, and more importantly, are good, solid well-thought out bits of characterization.

Mike's post pointed out the big three that fit all of the above (Batman, Superman, and Spider-man), and I absolutely agree. Those are probably the best - they all still make sense (with minimal modern revising), they're all solid writing and all firmly establish the characters; all of their traits, faults, and personalities are laid out right there at the beginning.

(As an aside, I agree with Mike that this movie so completely botched - with a retcon - Spider-man's origin. Completely sucked all of Peter's guilt out of it. In fact, absolved him of it, to a degree. And Spider-man without guilt is like Batman without Joe Chill. Oh, wait...)

But, the more I thought about it, the more I realized that there are very few big ticket super-heroes with origins that still work today. And make sense. Let's go through a few of them:

- Fantastic Four - All kinds of problems have cropped up since the years we learned that simply leaving Earth's atmosphere will not give you super powers, despite the Incredible Diaper-Lady. The modernization of the gawd-awful movie made it even worse, and I didn't think that was possible. The best re-vamp I' ve seen was how they handled it in the Ultimate universe. Keep it on Earth, make it a different Reed experiment (attempting to send an object into another dimensional plane), and include Doom. And make it Doom's secret mathmatical correction that causes it to explode in their faces. And don't ever let him believe that. Completely OK with that one.

- Wonder Woman - Tricky. Which one are we talking about? Personally, I like the classic one, slightly adapted like they did with the Justice League cartoon. Greek Amazons, contest to decide man's world representative, princess wins despite being forbidden to enter, given sacred artifact weapons, etc. etc. This should be fairly easy to translate to the screen, whenever the hell the movie gets written. But this one is soooo easy to botch up. Badly.

- Captain America - I don't see why this one wouldn't work just as it is. I'm willing to keep the one time only super soldier serum, the suspended animation, and the indestructible shield. Yes, keep this one just as it is, please. And for God's Sake, please have him behave as if he was actually from (hard to believe) the 1940's! I don't think we're going to see that bit translate well.

- Green Lantern - Don't mind this one, either. As long as it sticks to the "crash landed alien choses successor with last dying action to serve in the Universal Police Force" theme and Hal (yes, Hal) simply has Earth as one part of the vast responsibilities in his sector. That setup lends itself so well to any bit of good writing - you've got a whole universe worth of crime drama right there. Probably the best setup - if you're thinking about sequels - in the bunch. But, and I'm thinking Hollywood here, I shudder to think of how many ways this can be screwed with. Think (Jack) about (Black) it. Ugggh.

- Iron Man - From all the press, I've got a decent idea how they're going to go with this one, and I've always been a bit bothered by it, even though it's pretty spot on to the original. I like the idea that Tony creates a device to keep him alive while imprisoned out of spare junk. Man's a genius. But, when you go from that to building a suit of war-armor out of that same junk.. not so much. It would be much better, I've always thought, if Tony fixes (temporallary) his heart condition, then builds something more simplistic - like a laser gauntlet and a shield - that allows him to escape and gives him the idea for the real suit once back at Stark Industries. He makes the suit there, then starts with the ass-kicking. Simple device out of junk while imprisoned just to escape; big ass machine once back at the place that could actually build it. I know I'm splitting hairs with the Mark I (prison) - Mark III (Stark Labs) armor thing, but I think that even the Mark I armor shouldn't have been built under those conditions. Keep it simple at first.

- Hulk - This one's a classic, but it needed tweaking almost as soon as it came out. And all you have to do is move from a bomb to a lab. Fine by me. You can even have that wacky intern Rick Jones screw it up somehow.

- X-Men - Mutants. Who cares? Probably the laziest origin of the bunch. But it holds up pretty well.

- Ambush Bug - You don't mess with perfection. I'm looking at you, Hollywood! And you better get James Earl Jones to be the voice of Argh!Yle! in the movie. Or Gilbert Gottfried.

Whoops! Got stuck dreaming out loud there again! Laters!

(Heroes night tonight! Yay!)

No Raise for You!

Lois Lane: Dick.

Apparently salary is computed weekly over at The Daily Planet. And don't Jimmy and Perry both look pleased with their new figures?

Perry: My supply of Cuban's is ensured. Excellent.
Jimmy: Oh, boy! I can afford a new watch battery! I can cross the street again without fear!

And, it's proven for the umpteenth time in Silver-Age Superman stories that The Daily Planet has only four employees. And a publisher. Walt Disney.

I knew it.

Well, off to the Spider-Movie! Have fun, kids!

EDIT: I hate when I do this, but I always seem to find a better joke the second time I review my old posts. I probably should stop initially posting while inebriated.

... nah.

Kitty Greatness

I now present to you the Greatest Kitty Sequence Ever Put to Paper:

James Kochalka (Superstar!) understands kitties.

(Sorry - my old kitty died a couple of months back, and every now and then I come across something that really reminds me of her. *sniff*)