Thursday, April 30, 2009

Thursday Night Thinking XCV

It's Thursday. You know what that means. It means: Thursday Night Thinking!

Yes, it did go well, didn't it? That entire issue went well. It's good to see that some writers understand that even in this modern age fine thoughts cannot be confined to multi-hued caption boxes...

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Wednesday, April 29, 2009

What a Week!

What gods did I please this week? It was an excellent week for comics. And that's not even counting the three books by Geoff Johns that came out this week.

It was all so good that Justice Society of America was my least favorite Geoff Johns book for the week. And that was the book that gave us this scene:

God, I love that crazy, unwieldy, overly large team. I hope the new writers/artist team does it justice...

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Get Ready To Be Confused

Apologies in advance as this is another post about Blackest Night. And somewhat convoluted, to boot.

I was wondering exactly how the whole "evil ring zombification" works. Are the Black Lanterns zombies in the classic sense? By that I mean are they mindless brain-eating shamblers? I think that unlikely. If they are intelligent then how does it work? Do they retain their intelligence from life, only with a darker bent that leads them to commit acts of evil? Or are they forced by some insidious power (Nekron?) to act as they do?

This is somewhat important. Especially when we see all the graves on covers that feature "Bruce Wayne." It's pretty obvious that we're going to be getting a Batman Black Lantern. And if the Black Lanterns are animated by the "spirits" of the dead then who's in the driver's seat of zombie Batman?

After all, we know that the real Bruce Wayne got zapped somewhere through time. He's not dead. But then, you could say that Martian Manhunter and Earth-2 Superman are also alive in the past. Is there a "dead" Batman in the present to drive the Black Lantern? Or do I have the whole methodology out of whack?

The whole concept makes my head hurt. I really hope Geoff Johns reveals all for those like me who need the minutiae...

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Monday, April 27, 2009


I've been thinking about Green Lanterns a lot lately. I suppose that's to be expected considering Blackest Night is on the horizon. Mostly I've been going over Green Lantern villains in my head. Specifically Hal's villains. And I've found that -- with one notable exception -- they're all a bunch of shifty, creepy weirdos.

Sinestro's got that mustache, first of all. You know you can't trust a man with a 'stache like that. Hector Hammond has... The exact same mustache. Plus he's always trying to have sex with people using his brain. That's just disturbing.

The Shark, of course, wants to eat your brain.

Still, even among a menagerie of misfits, creepos, and pervs I think we can agree that Black Hand is the skeeviest of the skeevy:

Why exactly do you attract all the freaks, Hal? Kyle's villains weren't this creepy...

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Friday, April 24, 2009

Fine Lines

Trinity was great this week. Mostly for the dialogue. Issue #47 gave us great lines like this:

  • "Your hour of reckoning is at hand!"
  • "I am three times the god you are!"
  • "Ahh, but we'll see a battle now!"
  • "Such a rich jest!"
  • "You'll all rue this day!"
  • "Answer me, you arrogant shade!"
  • "Luthor has done enough."

And of course:

  • "Smack 'em up!"


Thursday, April 23, 2009

Thursday Night Thinking XCIV

Ah, it's good to see you all here again for Thursday Night Thinking! It feels like forever, even if it's only been seven days.

It's been a long time since we've had any Fables thoughts, hasn't it? Let's make up for it with a double thought:

Oh! What thoughts they have...

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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

A Sad Occasion

I'm happy today. I'm very happy indeed. Forget the fact that an "Azrael" book hit the stands without me being between the pages.

Know this:

I was invited to Batman's funeral.

I don't know who decided to invite me (though it was probably Alfred). But I was happy to be remembered in this tragic time. I may not have always gotten along with him, but I still feel privileged that I was one of the few to receive an invitation.

I guess Neil Gaiman is as good as everybody says...

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Monday, April 20, 2009

July Solicits

New solicitations are out!

July is going to be a big month... Because it's time for Blackest Night! I think it's safe to say that this is the biggest Green Lantern event in, well, ever.

We've had a lot of "Batman events" over the years and "Superman events." But this is the capstone of a GL-centric event that's been brewing since Rebirth. That Geoff Johns sure knows how to plan in advance.

I'm not going to go into any details about what they're showing us in the solicits because of big spoilers. Some people might not owant to know. Suffice to say... A lot of predictions will be proven right or wrong here in a few months.

The Blackest Night is coming...

Oh, and there won't be a post tomorrow as I'm going to be out of town. But we'll be back on Wednesday!

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Sunday, April 19, 2009

Half of Six is Three

I was rereading the current Secret Six run this weekend when I noticed something. It's pretty obvious and I'm sure I'm not the first to bring it up, but it's interesting nonetheless.

The current roster of the Six includes Ragdoll, Scandal Savage, Jeanette, Bane, Deadshot, and Catman. The first three are original characters created by Gail Simone (though Ragdoll and Scandal are legacies of a sort). The latter three all got their start as Batman villains. Deadshot made is first appearance in Batman #59 way back in 1950, Catman first debuted in the 60's, and Bane shouldn't need an introduction.

You have to wonder why exactly villains originally created to battle Batman have habitually filled out the list of Gail Simone's Secret Six. After all, before Bane we had Harley Quinn on the team for a while. And who could forget the Mad Hatter's appearance?

I think some of it has to do with the fact that Batman's villains are by and large more disturbed than most of the other characters. Superman's villains (with the exception of Toyman, perhaps) aren't crazy at all. They've got agendas. Flash's villains are in it for the cash. But Batman's villains -- even if they claim to have other motives -- are driven by their psychoses. These are seriously disturbed people.

Which is why they fit so well in the Secret Six. And why they're so fun to watch...

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Thursday, April 16, 2009

Thursday Night Thinking XCIII

Welcome again to the never ending drama that is... Thursday Night Thinking!

Tonight: we take the path less traveled. There are plenty of interesting thoughts in comic book stories. But how many are there to be found in early 1960's comic book public service advertisements?

At least one, apparently.


Wednesday, April 15, 2009


Some of the people at Marvel -- guys like Joe Quesada -- like to talk big. They love to go on and on about how much better they are compared to DC. They like to talk things like "Marvel is more realistic." They'll often cite things like Marvel comics taking place in "real" cities and how the president in the Marvel U is always the "real" president as opposed to whatever pitiful fake president they think DC is using.

Here today I call them hypocrites. They don't get to claim that their comic universe is more realistic and a reflection of the real world when they make J. Jonah Jameson mayor of New York. That would be the height of hypocrisy.

Don't get me wrong; I'm not saying that this move is a bad idea. I'm sure that it will open up many interesting story possibilities. In much the same way that a fictional president might. Or a fictional city for a hero to call their own. But you are not allowed to bash your competition for such things and then turn around and do it yourself.

You can't have your cake and eat it too. You have to pick one or the other. Either you're the "realistic counterpoint to your fantasy rivals" or you're "just as fantasy as your fantasy rivals."

Not that it really matters to me. I'm sticking with the non-watered down original version full of capes and fictionopolises anyway...

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Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Why Wait?

As we speak this blog's "host" lies stricken ill. If only the fool had heeded my warnings and taken upon him the mighty curative benefits of magnetism. An insidious evil personality is a small price to pay for one's health.

But I digress. I came here to discuss more pressing matters in the comic book world. The comic writer known as "Geoff Johns" has made quit a name for himself in recent years. He is well known for taking lapsed concepts and revitalizing them, bringing them back to a place importance in their particular mythos.

Nowhere has this been more apparent than in Mr. Johns' run on Green Lantern. There, he took villains such as Sinestro, The Shark, Hector Hammond, Black Hand, and Star Sapphire and restored them to proper places of glory.

Oh? What's that you say? You note a particular absence from that list of Green Lantern's greatest adversaries? Yes, where is Doctor Polaris?

Geoff Johns has taken nearly every Green Lantnern villain and returned he or she or it to a position of prime importance in that mythos. But where is one of Green Lantern's oldest and most fearsome adversaries? Why has Geoff Johns ignored my importance to the Green Lantern legacy?

What is he afraid of?

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Monday, April 13, 2009


I'd originally planned for a return to normal posting (or whatever passes for normal here) today. Unfortunately, I woke up with a nasty virus or something. I'm so under the weather that I've spent half of my time awake today sleeping. That's how bad it is.

Somebody will start posting again tomorrow.


Saturday, April 11, 2009

Who is Barry Allen? Day Six

Who is Barry Allen?

A lot of time and effort has been spent over this past week trying to find the answer to that question. It's a question that has haunted us. We've found some answers, it's true. But we've found just as many questions.

Still, sometimes when a question seems complicated and difficult to answer that's because you're trying too hard. You're working so hard to find an answer that "feels" right that you miss the obvious right in front of you.

Who is Barry Allen?

It's a simple question, really. Barry Allen is The Flash. He's The Fastest Man Alive.

What more do you need to know?

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Friday, April 10, 2009

Who is Barry Allen? Day Five

Who is Barry Allen?

Over the course of this week I believe we have come close to an answer. We have learned many things about this mysterious man in red. But we still don't have a complete answer to the question:

Who is Barry Allen?

A man, it seems, possessed of a stern sense of justice.

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Thursday, April 09, 2009

Thursday Night Thinking XCII

Who is Barry Allen?

It is a question we have struggled with these past few days. A question that follows us into the depths of Thursday Night Thinking!

Who is Barry Allen?

A man can only truly be known when we gaze into his mind and examine his deepest thoughts. So I ask again:

Who is Barry Allen?

A man, it seems, possessed of great personal and professional jealousy...

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Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Who is Barry Allen? Day Three

Who is Barry Allen?

It is a question that these days permeates us all. Who is this man who has so suddenly and unexpectedly roared into the present from the distant past? We know some things about him, but we still haven't answered the question:

Who is Barry Allen?

He's a f#*&ing player, that's who he is.

Oh, and as an aside... Guess what turns up in Secret Six #8?

Hell yeah. A Wild Dog costume at the club. Everybody loves Wild Dog.

Thanks Gail!

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Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Who is Barry Allen? Day Two

Who is Barry Allen?

That is the question on everyone's minds. We have found a partial answer... But the full answer to that question is not so simple. It will take many days and much reflection to arrive at the totality of the truth. So we ask again:

Who is Barry Allen?

Someone, it seems, with an astonishingly poor sense of direction...

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Monday, April 06, 2009

Who is Barry Allen? Day One

I was born in 1982. Like many of my cohorts I've had little experience with the man known as "Barry Allen." Assuming that is even his real name.

Still, I dutifully picked up The Flash: Rebirth. The story is about Barry Allen. But at the end of it I still felt strangely unfulfilled. I had to an important question:

Who is Barry Allen?

If you are like me, you may have asked yourself the very same question. As a public service, thsi very week I will endeavor to answer this question -- at least in part. So let us ask again:

Who is Barry Allen?

Someone not so different from Hal Jordan as he'd like us to believe...

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Saturday, April 04, 2009

I Still Hate Spider-Man

This won't win me any fans, but I've got to say that I still can't stand Spider-Man. I mean, look at this guy:

Look at that. I mean look at it. Can you honestly say that when you see a face like that you don't want to put your fist into it?

I see the face of Peter Parker and I want to kick him in the shins. It rubs me the wrong way, every time I see it. And it's not just that, either. It's everything about the character. I just can't stand Spider-Man. I loathe him with an intensity far beyond the rational.

I'm going to go throw up now.

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Friday, April 03, 2009

Blackest Night Teasers

Blackest Night teasers are beginning to proliferate. A word of caution: if you don't want to know the thus far revealed identities of some of the Black Lanterns, turn away now. Otherwise...

Here's the thing: we've got three Black Lanterns confirmed. Those Black Lanterns are Superman (Earth-2 version), Martian Manhunter, and Aquaman. That's three characters who have traditionally been in the Justice League.

My thinking is this: there will be more Black Lanterns, each one representing additional traditional members of the Justice League. There's going to be an evil zombie Justice League prowling the skies doing zombie Justice League type things.

Or maybe not.

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Thursday, April 02, 2009

Thursday Night Thinking XCI

Ah yes... There's nothing quite like a good round of Thursday Night Thinking near the end of the week. Tomorrow's Friday, you know. If I had a job that might mean something to me...

Anyway, when we need good thoughts the pages of Jonah Hex rarely disappoint:

Damn straight.

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Wednesday, April 01, 2009

The Flash: Rebirth

I'm not sure how to feel about Flash: Rebirth.

I think it's probably a generational thing. After all, when Barry Allen "died" in Crisis I was only three years old. By the time I was reading comics Wally West had already been the Flash for quite a long time. And unlike Hal Jordan, Barry Allen didn't show up much. Even after his death Hal Jordan had a constant presence in the DCU. Barry did as well, but only as much as a dead, sainted figure.

So I'm having difficulty with Flash: Rebirth. This Barry Allen is a stranger to me. He is not someone I've known. But unlike with truly new characters I feel like I'm the only one who doesn't know him. All the characters in the story are ecstatic to see him. The villains are concerned. And I feel like I'm that guy who was brought along to a wedding or birthday party for someone he doesn't know.

Now, I'm not saying I'm not enjoying the book. There's a nice mystery being set up, and some of Barry Allen's background is explored. But I guess I still feel a little on the outside. I'm not one who gets why Barry Allen is seen as so spectacular and special by everyone else. Jay Garrick claiming that Barry was "first" in some way feels forced. To me, a lot of it feels forced.

But Geoff Johns is smart enough, I know. Because there's someone in the story representing me: Bart Allen. Some people might say that Bart is being portrayed out of character. But he needs to be there in that way in the story. Bart is hitting all the right beats and feeling just like I do. He doesn't understand why it's all a big deal. He feels that Wally earned his position as the Flash. He feels that everyone acts (perhaps wrongly) like Barry is some sort of "messiah."

So Geoff Johns knows that there are people like me out there. People who aren't convinced. And he'll try to convince us. I know Bart will eventually be convinced. But will he convince me that Barry Allen is something special?

We shall see.

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