Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Well, that was exciting

After an unforeseen hiatus induced by an OS meltdown, a complete laptop wipe, and a careful restoration of my scans library, I’m back. I had just about everything copied off to external drives, so let this be a lesson for those of you with huge libraries like mine: back up, back up, back up. 

Gee, I hope nothing exciting happened in comics-tumblr-land while I was gone … 

Saturday, May 14, 2011
Motor City Comic Con is this weekend. I’d never been, but from my first trip out, it seems the emphasis is more on actors than comics guests, and on buying/selling far more than programming (of which there was next to nothing). No real presence from any major publishers — if there were so much as information booths for Marvel, DC, Dark Horse or Image, I didn’t see them. All of that combined with the lack of fan presence at the creator tables gave it more of a comics market vibe than a real con feel, but it was a fun way to spend an afternoon, just the same. 
I left with 80 comics. (The very first booth I came to was $0.50/issue, and the selection was really good — I could’ve got a lot more.) My Marvel collection is fairly solid, so after grabbing a couple issues of Cap and the Falcon, I took the opportunity to fill in my DC collection a bit: I bought them out of Impulse and Superboy, found a couple issues of New Teen Titans and a Nightwing #1, and restrained myself to about 30 issues of Robin. 
My haul included Cap #147, which has this delightful bit: “Can you dig it or what?” “You’d better believe I can!” Oh, 1971.

Motor City Comic Con is this weekend. I’d never been, but from my first trip out, it seems the emphasis is more on actors than comics guests, and on buying/selling far more than programming (of which there was next to nothing). No real presence from any major publishers — if there were so much as information booths for Marvel, DC, Dark Horse or Image, I didn’t see them. All of that combined with the lack of fan presence at the creator tables gave it more of a comics market vibe than a real con feel, but it was a fun way to spend an afternoon, just the same. 

I left with 80 comics. (The very first booth I came to was $0.50/issue, and the selection was really good — I could’ve got a lot more.) My Marvel collection is fairly solid, so after grabbing a couple issues of Cap and the Falcon, I took the opportunity to fill in my DC collection a bit: I bought them out of Impulse and Superboy, found a couple issues of New Teen Titans and a Nightwing #1, and restrained myself to about 30 issues of Robin. 

My haul included Cap #147, which has this delightful bit: “Can you dig it or what?” “You’d better believe I can!” Oh, 1971.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Farewell, Smallville

Hopping the fence for a moment: I’ll be sad to see Smallville go off-air tonight. It had its low points (I broke up with it somewhat dramatically in season five, only to get lured back in like a sucker by Green Arrow), but the past few seasons have been some of its best, and going out on a high note is no small feat for a show that’s been on for ten seasons. 

Smallville even got me into DCU after a lifetime of reading exclusively in Marvel. I started with Teen Titans and Young Justice, and then it spiraled out into Superboy, Robin, Nightwing, and Impulse, and from there into — everything else, and these days my tumblr reading list is up to its ears in Robins. (Also, my decor is loaded with purple; it’s the Lex Luthor Effect.) 

The show produced what is, for my money, the best screen version of Lois Lane to date, turned Lex Luthor into a WB sex symbol, and found every possible excuse to get Oliver Queen out of his shirt. It was good times, and it will be missed. I have no real expectations about the finale, but if I had just one wish for how it all will end, it would be: 
There’s nothing about this I don’t love: Steve conveniently losing his shirt, Clint’s ridiculous playacting, Sharon’s snark, Steve’s complete inability to connect the Golden Archer with Hawkeye. 

There’s nothing about this I don’t love: Steve conveniently losing his shirt, Clint’s ridiculous playacting, Sharon’s snark, Steve’s complete inability to connect the Golden Archer with Hawkeye. 

Thursday, May 12, 2011

I picked up this issue at ECCC a few years back. It’s (in part) a creative team meta issue, not entirely unlike Who Won’t Wield the Shield, with a co-feature of sorts starring Marvel’s 1984 id (and also Bernie Rosenthal). Bernie dreams about being Captain America, and the story follows her dream. As a concept, it isn’t bad, but the execution is something else. 

This is meant to be funny, an exaggerated look at what happens when you put Cap’s girlfriend in the suit: earlier in the story she gossips about men with She-Hulk and Wasp, mixes up villains, and doesn’t take either the male Avengers or her enemy at all seriously. Bernie becoming a superhero instantly turns Steve into an deferential, overwrought, dim-witted, loyal-to-a-fault boyfriend who just can’t understand her commitment to her job (a commentary on Bernie herself/maybe even superheroes’ girlfriends in general, given it’s clearly meant as role-reversal), and, of course, her biggest emergency is a run in Janet’s stockings. 

For all that this is meant to be funny, it isn’t so far removed from a 1964 bit in Tales of Suspense 59, where the male Avengers sit around waiting as Wasp fixes her make-up for half an hour. (“The trouble with girls is — they all act like females,” Steve declares.) Twenty years on, the joke is still on Jan for being a high-maintenance girl.  

At the end, it’s all a dream, and Bernie gratefully leaps into Steve’s arms. Why she was so thrilled it was a dream? Was being a superhero really hard? Was she grateful to wake up to a boyfriend too macho to cry about broken dates? 

Intentionally or not, this story delivers the message that women shouldn’t fantasize about being superheroes, and that girlfriends of superheroes should avoid being emotional and needy toward their boyfriends (that’s not extremely bright!). Hey, 1984: I see what you did there.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011 Monday, May 9, 2011

If I were casting an all-female Avengers:

dcwomenkickingass was asked, “Based on what you know about Marvel, which Marvel women would you use for a 10 woman Avengers team and why?” Their response is here; when I read it, I immediately started arguing with myself over which characters I would pick, and … well, you know how that goes. Couldn’t resist doing it myself: 

for combat ability, investigative skills, weapons training etc.: 
- Black Widow / Natasha Romanova 
- Mockingbird / Bobbi Morse
- Nomad / Rikki Barnes
- Power Woman / Jessica Jones
- Sharon Carter

for superpowers:
- Dazzler / Alison Blaire (…mostly because I think she’s awesome)
- Pixie / Megan Gwynn (for transportation, and also comic relief)
- Psylocke / Betsy Braddock (because every team needs a telepath/telekinetic)
- Rogue (again, mostly because I think she’s awesome) 
- Shadowcat / Kitty Pryde (for sneaking around) 

This list went through several drafts. It pained me to leave off a number of characters, and yet — my formative love for Dazzler isn’t going anywhere, so what can you do? 

Sunday, May 8, 2011
In which Steve (sort of) dreams about his mom. Aww, Steve. Happy Mother’s Day!

In which Steve (sort of) dreams about his mom. Aww, Steve. Happy Mother’s Day!

Saturday, May 7, 2011
Of the stacks of comics my brother and I picked up at FCBD this morning, my favorite titles were Spontaneous (consider me intrigued), Atomic Robo (again), and Captain America/Thor (no great surprise there). We went about ten minutes after the store opened and there was already a pretty big crowd, but things were very well organized (much love for my local store). Yay, Free Comic Book Day!
In today’s panels, two of my favorite characters meet for the first time. I loved the stuffing out of this mini, and odds are I’ll be revisiting it as often as I can get away with. 

Of the stacks of comics my brother and I picked up at FCBD this morning, my favorite titles were Spontaneous (consider me intrigued), Atomic Robo (again), and Captain America/Thor (no great surprise there). We went about ten minutes after the store opened and there was already a pretty big crowd, but things were very well organized (much love for my local store). Yay, Free Comic Book Day!

In today’s panels, two of my favorite characters meet for the first time. I loved the stuffing out of this mini, and odds are I’ll be revisiting it as often as I can get away with.