Random Thoughts! (August 21, 2012)

Random Thought! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Everybody, come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Come on! Everybody come on! It's Random Thoughts time! Get excited!

Link Thought! GraphiContent for comics. butterbeatleblog for popculture. 411mania for wrestling reviews and the occasional CD review. My Twitter account for random thoughts as they happen in real time.

Random Thought! The latest Riding the Gravy Train where I argue that Cyclops has not been corrupted by the power of the Phoenix and that Hope is the mutant Anti-Christ.

Random Thought! Because, just so you know, Avengers vs. X-Men is really about religion. Just as Civil War was about partisan politics in America, Secret Invasion was about immigration reform, Siege was about the Iraq War, and Fear Itself was about the economic collapse felt worldwide. Pretty sure House of M was just about alternate realities or crazy women or hating mutants or something.

Random Thought! See, that's why Marvel is better than DC: their stories are actually about stuff.

Random Thought! ...and even I don't know who I'm mocking in that previous thought. There are so many layers of snark in there.

Random Thought! I'm trying to get Scalped reread in whole before Wednesday, but that's seeming less and less likely as Wednesday approaches. I mean, I've only reread the first trade! I was out of town this weekend visiting my sister, saw SummerSlam last night, have to write Random Thoughts and watch Raw tonight, am going to a Blue Jays/Tigers game tomorrow night... Dammit.

Random Thought! I would have done the same thing for Butcher Baker, the Righteous Maker had I know it was the last issue. Hell, I almost did that just for the return. That the book ended with issue eight was a shock. A nice one. It's so rare that the end of something sneaks up on you like that and I really dug it.

Random Thought! Also ending this week: glamourpuss. Finally, I'll sit down soon and read the entire series. It should be insane and dense and awesome.

Random Thought! We finished watching the first season of Boss on DVD on Friday and it was an interesting show. A lot of stuff was ridiculous or just plain bad, but Kelsey Grammer is absolutely captivating and that second-last episode is an insane turnaround for his character. Just a pure 'bring down the wrath of god on everyone who's ever fucked me and even those who haven't' episode. And Stone's talk with the mayor in the final episode...! It's not a brilliant show or anything, but it's got enough there to be worth checking out.

Random Thought! Last week, my shop didn't get any copies of the fourth Uncanny X-Force trade. Hopefully, they arrive this week or I'll have reread the first three for nothing. Although, in rereading the trades, that third one didn't come off quite as poorly as it did when I first got it. It's still the weakest of the bunch by far, but it gains something by being reading more in context.

Random Thought! Isn't it a little weird that two of the 'bigger' alternate realities at Marvel ("The Age of Apocalypse" and "House of M") are about worlds where mutants are dominant? And Xavier is dead in both.

Random Thought! For the record, Cyclops over the past couple of years is the 'Third Way' beyond Xavier and Magneto. Xavier focused on peaceful coexistence with humanity, while Magneto thought that humanity needed to be eliminated/dominated -- Cyclops's worldview is to treat humanity as irrelevant. He's focused on survival and mutantkind, only caring what huamns do when their actions touch upon mutants. His limited moves towards humanity have been ones of either tricking them into seeing mutants as no threat (thereby being left alone) or scaring the shit out of humans (thereby being left alone). It's, honestly, the approach of the three that makes the most sense to me. Where Xavier and Magneto also got hung up was in looking to humanity.

Random Thought! That final page of Wonder Woman #12 was a fantastic surprise. The last thing I think any of us expected -- and yet it makes sense. Of course, it's also the moment where many of us went "So... can the next issue just be Azzarello and Chiang on a New Gods book?"

Random Thought! Okay, okay, Blackest Night was about the perils of nostalgia and longing for a return to a past that's dead. THERE!

Random Thought! Tomorrow night (or, I guess, 'tonight' when this is posted), Michelle and I are hitting the Jays/Tigers game in Detroit and on Thursday, I'm catching the afternoon game by myself. I sprung for a more expensive ticket since I'm going alone. Before I go, though, we're heading downtown to pick up our marriage license. The wedding is less than two months away and approaching quickly.

Random Thought! Hopefully, my copy of Capturing Ghosts will arrive in the mail since it was supposed to ship last week. Early on, I contributed in the most minor of ways by helping the Sequart folks come up with questions to ask Ellis and, had I lived in a more convenient location or attended any cons, I could have been interviewed for it. I'm actually kind of glad that that never happened, because I don't really want to have my ugly mug ruin what looks to be a very interesting documentary for me. I'm particularly looking forward to seeing how the puppet figures into things.

Random Thought! Though, the fact that the folks at Sequart haven't begged Tim and I to do Splash Page commentaries for their documentaries is, obviously, a crime. (I'm, like, 70% kidding...)

Random Thought! I am looking forward to Where is Jake Ellis?

Random Thought! Canadians: Do you also think that President's Choice is most likely lobbying for the ability to sell alcohol in their grocery stores -- and also have plans for various lines of alcoholic beverages all ready to go into production? Their beer line would be a line of international beer, obviously, while they would deliver some odd mix of fruit and vodka for their coolers. They probably have rye whisky in barrels right now aging and, when they finally get the ability to sell alcohol, they'll launch with some incredibly old, well-aged rye that they will simply call "Choice" or something like that.

Random Thought! I bought a new pair of shoes for $19 at Wal-Mart. It was a combination of price and finding something in my size. I love cheap shoes.

Random Thought! And, finally, Infinite Crisis was about how your younger self would be ashamed of the person you've become and how you've betrayed everything you once stood for, you pathethic fuck.


Random Joe Casey Question! When your name comes up and people mention stuff of yours they like best or think is 'the best,' it's usually the same comics like Automatic Kafka or your Wildcats work (and almost always Version 3.0, which always bugs me a little, if only for the thought that people are missing out on the stuff done with Sean Phillips and Steve Dillon) -- stuff that's almost a decade old at this point. Does that bother you? Do you ever feel like you're competing with yourself? Hell, is there a sense that, no matter WHAT you do, those will always be the works people single out for the simple reason that those are the works that people single out?

Random Joe Casey Answer! That's just the warm glow of nostalgia at work. At the time they were coming out, plenty of folks disparaged WILDCATS and KAFKA and the sales tended to reinforce the negative opinions that existed. That's just how it goes and I'm fine with that. These days, some people will even talk about how much they loved my run on UNCANNY X-MEN, which was pretty much universally hated at the time. Go figure.

All I can do is make sure that I'm expressing myself honestly and making the best comicbooks I can. However well they sell (or don't sell, as the case may be) is a transitory circumstance... y'know, some of the best-selling books of the past thirty years are absolute dreck and some real artistic gems never sold for shit. Every time I make a new comicbook, I'm striving to make motherfucking Art and I'm making it to stand the test of time. Sometimes it does, and sometimes it doesn't... but I don't feel so much like I'm in competition with myself as much as I want to push myself further than I might've gone before.


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

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