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Random Thoughts! (August 24, 2010)

by  in Comic News Comment
Random Thoughts! (August 24, 2010)

Random Thought! The girlfriend is out of town camping… I’ll admit that I’m a little lonely right now. It’s random thoughts time! Get excited!

Link Thought! GraphiContent for comics. butterbeatleblog for popculture (including a new series of posts that began last week on SpongeBob SquarePants).

Random Thought! It is 1:45 right now. Three hours until this post goes up. And I’ve got nothing except the above and the comments at the bottom. Fuck me.

Random Thought! To aid me, I have stuck some Moby in the CD player.

Random Thought! Yes, that figure closest to the reader on the Age of Heroes #4 cover is meant to be Zodiac. Seriously.

Random Thought! Did anything happen in comics this last week? Anything?

Random Thought! On Sunday, I reread Transmetropolitan. I hadn’t read it in years, at least some time before I moved to Windsor in 2006. And I don’t remember rereading it immediately before leaving, so at least over four years ago. It was amazing how much of it I still remembered perfectly. Not just the early trades (since I’d read them the most obviously), but even the stuff at the end. It was like coming home. I had no idea how big an impact that book had made on me — how much of an impression it left.

Random Thought! I own the series in trades, but, before I bought the trades, I got some random issues to try the series out. My first experience with the book was issues 13-18, which I got out of the back issue bin (started there because the only earlier issue they had was part two of the previous three-issue arc and that didn’t seem like a good place to begin as opposed to a comic that proclaims “YEAR TWO” on the cover and was also the first Vertigo issue of the series). “Year of the Bastard.” I’m so glad I got that arc in singles for the essay in the back of #13 where Warren Ellis discusses politics and got me into Hunter Thompson. Thompson’s Fear and Loathing: On the Campaign Trail ’72 makes up the spine of “Year of the Bastard.”

Random Thought! Having the comic in singles for these few issues means that I get the last five letter columns of the series before Vertigo eliminated the letter columns. Savage Critic Jeff Lester makes an appearance in issue 16, while a fellow by the name of Steve Wacker shows up in issue 17 to discuss a curious nickname…

Random Thought! Between the covers and the two column one-shots (plus the short bits in the issue where Spider sees TV versions of himself and then has drug-induced dreams), the number of great artists involved with this series in some way or another is staggering. But, the rock/main show is Darick Robertson.

Random Thought! I will forever wonder if Bryan Hitch based the guy who plays the porn version of Spider Jerusalem on an actual person.

Random Thought! While “Year of the Bastard” is my favourite storyarc, if I were to choose a favourite single-issue story, I’d have to go with issue 27, “Monstering.” It’s just a funny, fun issue of Spider hounding a Senator with embarrassing questions. It still makes me laugh.

Random Thought! I reread All-Star Superman yesterday and remain the only person who has read it that doesn’t get all warm and mushy inside simply by thinking about it. Not my thing.

Random Thought! I’m sure it says something about me that I love Transmet, while All-Star Superman leaves me cold.

Random Thought! I can appreciate the craft of All-Star Superman, it just doesn’t engage me on a personal, emotional level.

Random Thought! I do love Morrison’s Bizarroworld, though.

Random Thought! I may reread some other stuff in the next few days before Michelle gets back, but I’m not sure what. Tomorrow will be eaten up with new comics and review writing. Part of me is tempted to make a go at Ennis’s Punisher MAX run. We’ll see.

Random Thought! “We are All Made of Stars” always reminds me of the final part of Joe Casey and Charlie Adlard’s Codeflesh. More the music video of the song reminds me of that part, because of the similar technique used in both.

Random Thought! Tim Callahan will be in Baltimore this weekend. If you see him, you must greet him by proclaiming “Chad was right about Thor the Mighty Avenger, you bald bastard!” Extra points if you then throw a hammer at him.

Random Thought! For this week’s comics, I’m looking forward to Avengers #4 quite a bit since I’ve been loving that book. Curious to see if Batman #702 will be more worthwhile than 701. Plus there’s new Scalped, Gravel, Secret Warriors, and Captain America. Solid week.

Random Thought! I may be a dick and simply flip through Superman/Batman #75 to check out the two or three two-page (or is it one-page) strips that look interesting in it.

Random Thought! I will be buying (and reviewing) Punisher MAX: Happy Family since it’s got Peter Milligan and Juan Jose Ryp. That’s a good team.

Random Thought! Man, what the fuck, Marvel? Check out this preview for Wolverine: The Best There Is #1 and note that approximately 36.8% of the preview is censored, including one full page. I know the idea that it’s too violent to show should entice me to want to see it, but this ‘preview’ just makes me want to avoid the book. Censor Jaun Jose Ryp art? Fuck you.

Random Thought! Hmm… 3:12. Not bad. Onto comments! (No, I didn’t work on this continuously…)

***

Random Comments! I do this post, you comment, I chose some of those comments to respond to/fill up space. Everybody wins!

Nathan Irwin said: You *do* have to pass through Ohio to get from Pennsylvania to Michigan on foot. But you only have to cut across the northern part of the state. Cincinnatti is well to the south. You could, however, fit in a quick stop in Cleveland on your way to Detroit.

I know that, but to go from Detroit to Cincinnati, he would have to turn around and retrace a big part of where he’d already walked. It would make sense to hit Cincinnati first.

Bill Reed said: Pretty sure Superman can walk on water. His second album, after all, was called Bigger Than Jesus. I don’t get anything free from Radical, but I do get all those Boom! PDFs, and sadly, read almost none of them. I’m a bad critic, I guess.

That’s true: Superman could just walk across Lake Erie… and I read a big chunk of the BOOM! pdfs… or stockpile them until I’m going to review an issue of a series and read them all then. Then again, I’m a good critic, so…!

AS said: Why don’t the back of my magazine have coupons to send? Or have I used them all except the one written on my wrist?

I have a razor in my mitts.

Mario said: Wow, I think you’re the first person who’s ever shown proof that Wildstorm was, arguably, publishing some of the best comics out there at a given time. It’s a little difficult to disagree with you. Those are some good comcis.

It wasn’t all great, but, yeah, that period of Wildstorm was fantastic. It’s weird to notice that so much of it was driven by three writers, though: Warren Ellis, Joe Casey, and Alan Moore. And people wonder why I’m such a Casey fan with the company he keeps…

Omar Karindu, with the power of SUPER-hypocrisy! said: I really don’t think Casey’s Zodiac could work as an ongoing, not least because the character would be ruined by having any sort of backstory grafted on. I mean, the mini worked at three issues because Zodiac’s a sociopathic cipher with no long-term goals beyond wreaking havoc as a lifestyle choice. He’s fun because he’s got no depth in his malice, but by definition that becomes grating over the longer term.

I wouldn’t find that grating at all. Keep pushing forward, forget the past! Fuck shit up! Hells yes!

Kris said: Thanks for giving me the idea to listen to Cohen. I neglect his music too much.

No problem. I go through periods of listening to him heavily, although Songs of Love and Hate is one of my favourite albums of all time, so it gets played quite a bit.

Ian A. said: I’d buy all five issues of a Zodiac ongoing, man! There’s no way it could last, and that’s probably for the best. That character was designed for focused blasts of chaos. It would be great to see him pop up every time there was a major crossover, just to muck up the works as much as possible. In fact, he might be the perfect villain for the Heroic Age, since his villainy is so pure and his methods are so crafty. I’d kinda hate to see anyone but Casey write him and Fox draw him, though. There’s another strike against a potential ongoing: Can Nathan Fox do a year-long monthly? Would he even want to?

He really does reflect the “Heroic Age” well. I think an ongoing could work. I don’t know about Fox’s speed, though… I’m with you on the character being ignored if it’s not done by Casey and Fox, though.

Will you be getting Wildstorm Presents, by the way? If anything has a chance of capturing some of the lost majesty, it might be that since, well, most of the stories in it are probably from the ’99-’05 era.

I may. Depends on what’s in it specifically combined with excess cash.

Funkygreenjuraslem said: But why are you reading [Avengers: The Origin] then?

Because it’s Joe Casey, man. And it’s got some interesting character moments. He writes a fantastic Hank Pym. Not a comic read for the plot, though.

Travis Pelkie said: Oh, and I’m guessing that the Cohen refs people are making are in regards to your opening lines. Is there some Canadian content provision you have to abide by, Chad, quoting Leonard Cohen and praising Chester Brown?

Nah, I just like Canadian stuff… seeing how I’m Canadian. I have files to keep track of all of the CDs and DVDs I buy, and my CD list has two main categories: Canadian and non-Canadian. And the Canadian list is only just over a hundred CDs under the non-Canadian.

That’s it for this week. Thanks for reading. Later.