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What I bought – 17 October 2012

by  in Comic News Comment
What I bought – 17 October 2012

Aliye’s death, and its echoes, had been stilled by the greater horror of this mother’s death, which burned inside him like a smothered coal in the silence there. But Aliye had started dying from the moment his mother told him that they were not to marry, in spite of the bey’s gracious visit, in spite of the fine carpet, in spite of the words he has whispered to Aliye and which he had thought were true words. He knew then how it must end for her, though his mother said it would be otherwise. He wished that there were one fixed thing in the world that would never change, or disappoint him, or leave him, but he did not know what that might be, unless it was the idea of God, which was a certitude without delight or consolation. (Starling Lawrence, from Montenegro)

Batwoman #13 (“World’s Finest Part 2: Stygian Descent”) by J. H. Williams III (writer/artist), W. Haden Blackman (writer), Dave Stewart (colorist), and Todd Klein (letterer). $2.99, 20 pgs, FC, DC.

After Williams and Blackman got distracted by the zero issue, we’re back on track with Kate and Wonder Woman tracking down the bad guys. Which means we’re back to Williams doing a lot of cool things with the artwork (two-page spreads of Kate and Diana walking through a maze, for instance) and at least telling an interesting story, unlike the one in issue #0. It’s such a wonderful book to look at, and it’s nice that even though the writing isn’t great, it’s in the service of a story that Williams and Blackman like telling, so it feels more interesting. Williams and Blackman are much better with the dialogue, which works perfectly well, than the internal monologues of the characters, which can be a bit overwrought. We know that Kate is in awe of Wonder Woman, and we know that Wonder Woman admires Kate, and we know that Kate’s dad is in turmoil over what happened to Kate and what he’s doing to Bette, and we know that Bette doesn’t feel as good as Kate, so why do we need to waste time reading about it? Beats me. Still, the art is beautiful, and even though this story is really, really long, it’s still interesting, so I can forgive the somewhat bland writing. Isn’t that nice of me?

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆

One totally Airwolf panel:

Chew #29 (“Space Cakes Part 4 of 5”) by John Layman (writer/letterer), Rob Guillory (artist/colorist), and Taylor Wells (color assistant). $2.99, 20 pgs, FC, Image.

A while ago, I saw the two-page spread in the middle of this issue of Chew, and it was amazing. It’s one of those things that adds nothing to the overall plot of the book, but is perfect in the context of the Chew universe, and shows once again how much fun Layman and Guillory are having with this book. I can imagine Guillory getting the pages from Layman and thinking, “Hell, yeah!” I mean, I imagine he does that with almost every page of this comic, but especially with those two!

Meanwhile, John, Toni, and Cesar are on another case, and as usual, each case adds a nice layer of story-building to the overall epic while still being a fun story on its own. The “vampire” is back, and he’s mixed up in another food-based case, but Layman adds some other things, too: Cesar continues to try to figure out from where he knows Toni (Layman goes for an obvious joke in this section, but it’s still funny, so there’s that), Cesar almost slips up when he mentions Savoy, and Toni sees a vision of the future that freaks her right out. Plus, Guillory gets to draw that double-page spread and add his usual fun advertising in the background. And Layman gets to use the word “sedulity.” That’s always fun!

Next issue is the halfway point of the series, and it will be interesting to see if Layman will manage to get Tony up and around again (he appears briefly in this issue, and looks like he’s almost recovered). As always, Chew is a wonderful comic. Why aren’t you reading it?

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ½ ☆ (I would have given it 8 stars, but that two-page spread upped it another half-star!)

One totally Airwolf panel:

Glory #29 (“Bloodshadow Part One: In Revolt”) by Joe Keatinge (writer), Ross Campbell (artist), Owen Gieni (colorist) Charis Solis (colorist), and Douglas E. Sherwood (letterer). $3.99, 20 pgs, FC, Image.

Glory is back and as bad-ass as ever, as Keatinge and Campbell don’t miss a beat in bringing us the continuing story of Glory’s quest to kill a lot of monsters. Or something. Anyway, in this issue Keatinge gives us some backstory about Glory’s sister, Nanaja, who’s as bad-ass as Glory, but without the soft side. Oh dear. After the craziness of the previous few issues, Keatinge calms things down a bit to give us useful information, presumably before the blood starts spurting again. Campbell’s art looks a bit smoother than the previous issues, and I wonder if the coloring has something to do with that. Gieni colored some of the earlier issues, but now he and Solis are doing it exclusively, so I wonder if they have a different process that the previous colorists, Hamilton and Bergin. It’s still wonderful art, but it does look a bit softer. Campbell only shows up here to listen to Kelly’s podcast, which makes me sad, but maybe he’ll see this and have an answer ready!

I was struck by the weird puritanical attitude of this comic. Image presumably doesn’t censor much in their books, and so I guess the censoring is up to the individual creators. Therefore we get weird foci for censorship – some creators don’t like nudity, some don’t like ultra-violence, some don’t like cursing. In previous issues of Glory, we’ve seen that the creators have no problem with violence, and in this very issue of the comic, we see a nude Glory (only her breasts, of course, but still). Yet the cursing is blacked out, with that black-out effect that we’ll call the “Frank Miller Swearing Effect” because the black doesn’t mean we can’t read the words underneath it. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again: If you’re not going to let the curse words appear in all their glory, find a different word to use. Nanaja is an alien, after all – make up a curse word for her to say! It’s really stupid, especially because it robs anything the characters (in this issue’s case, Nanaja) say of any impact. When Nanaja arrives on Earth, she says “Lets [sic] fuck shit up.” We know what’s she’s saying, but the black bars over her words make us chuckle instead of thinking, “Holy shit, this chick means business!” If Keatinge had some kind of stance against bad words and simply used grawlix, maybe I could forgive it, but he actually wrote the words (and Sherwood lettered them into the comic), and then put the black bars over it. It makes no sense. As with any attempt to use foul language and then call attention to it by obscuring it, this makes the book look like it was created by 14-year-old boys who are trying to get away with something and hope their parents don’t notice. I’ve met both Keatinge and Campbell, and neither of them is a 14-year-old boy.

Glory is a very good comic, one of the better ones out there right now. Why the creators are being coy on the page is beyond me. Sigh.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

One totally Airwolf panel:

Godzilla: The Half-Century War #3 (of 5) by James Stokoe (writer/artist) and Heather Breckel (color assistant). $3.99, 22 pgs, FC, IDW.

In one two-page spread in this comic, we get to see Rodan, Battra, Kumonga, Megalon, Godzill, Mothra, Ebirah, and Hedorah battling each other in the destroyed streets of Accra, Ghana, in 1975. Then, later, we get a double-page spread of a VW van driving through the streets while Godzilla tries to blast it with his radioactive breath as Rodan smashes into a building, Mothra swoops down toward Godzilla, and Kumonga battles Megalon. Oh, and then the van smashes right through Hedorah (see below).

I don’t know why you’re still sitting there and not running out and buying this comic, I really don’t.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

One totally Airwolf panel:

Hawkeye #3 (“Cherry”) by Matt Fraction (writer), David Aja (artist), Matt Hollingsworth (colorist), and Chris Eliopoulos (letterer). $2.99, 20 pgs, FC, Marvel.

I try very hard to avoid reading reviews of books I read before I can review them, because I want to have my own thoughts about a book, and if I read other reviews, not only might I be influenced by them, I might accidentally steal some of their phrasing, and I really don’t want to do that. This is especially true when I like a comic and someone else doesn’t, especially if they’re someone like Abhay or Tucker Stone, who, when they don’t like something, they consider it an affront to humanity that someone actually published the thing in question and that some other people might actually enjoy it. But I happened to check out Every Day Is Like Wednesday before I wrote about this issue, and Caleb made a brilliant point about Hawkeye that I’ve been trying to articulate, so I’m going to quote him:

That is, Hawkeye is a comic book about nothing more than being an awesome comic book; the incredible talent, skill and craft that went into its creation apparently being the point of the endeavor, while the content is otherwise simply bad action movie plot devices.

That’s so true I’m pissed I didn’t think of it. I haven’t been in love with Hawkeye, and it’s been bugging me why I haven’t been, and Caleb gets to the heart of it. You look at the marvelous Aja art, not only in the actual pencil work but the way he lays out each page, and it’s astounding (plus, in this issue we get a serious contender for Best Panel of the Year – see below). Fraction’s writing isn’t as superb as it can be, but it’s often clever, and bringing Kate as a counter-point to Clint was a brilliant move, and their repartee is often wonderful. The plotting is quick and jumpy without being confusing. But the actual plots have been lousy, and Fraction can’t quite keep the book from silly action movie cliché as much as he wants. In a lot of ways, Hawkeye is like Paul Thomas Anderson or Wes Anderson or, I don’t know, Jim Jarmusch (if you want to get even weirder) directing something like Bad Boys. There’s a jarring disconnect between the level of skill involved in the making of the comic (especially but not exclusively with the art) and the banality of the plots. It’s keeping me from embracing this comic completely, and Caleb lays it out far more succinctly than I could. Thanks, Caleb!

I mean, Aja is wonderful, of course, and he really keeps up the energy in this book while still making everything clear and doing a nice job with some visual gags. Hollingsworth is going a tiny bit overboard with the purple, but not so much that it’s annoying, and Kate’s purple VW bug is adorable. And Fraction does some really nice work with the dialogue. But then there’s the stuff that’s not as good. The “tracksuit mafia” from issue #1 is back, which means that Fraction is probably going to have some kind of über-plot and we’ll find out why they were chasing the girl, but it also means that everyone gets to indulge their inner frat boy, Clint included. I honestly feel like everyone who meets Clint would want to punch him in the face five minutes after meeting him, and that’s kind of annoying. Plus, the tracksuit mafia are all driving Mini Coopers with numbers on the side? Really? How 1960s Batman. I know we’re supposed to find Clint charmingly adolescent – hey, look, he has impulse-control problems! – but it really seems like he’s an idiot at times. Finally, the cliché of clichés: the girl. I have never had much game, so this doesn’t apply to me, but I’d like all you dudes out there who actually have some game to think about this carefully. Have you ever walked up to a woman, told her you’ll buy her car because you’re “crazy-rich,” and then ask her to give you a ride to buy some tape, and then move right to the sex? I mean, maybe you have a great smile and that rogue-ish charm (I have neither), but has that ever happened to you? I’m sick of people falling into bed with each other on television, in movies, and in comics, so it’s not just this issue, but it’s really annoying. I’m just glad Fraction ran out of room in the issue before we found out that the woman was, in fact, evil. See? It’s little shit like that that keep me from loving this comic unequivocally, because it’s put together so well. But a lot of comics that are about being awesome and still find time to deliver something more interesting than a car chase, including several that came out this week. So, for now, I’ll keep buying Hawkeye, because it doesn’t suck. But I keep wondering if maybe Fraction could try a little harder.

(Obviously, I could be an idiot. The lovely Ms. Thompson, for instance, loves this sucker. So there you have it!)

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆

One totally Airwolf panel:

Hellblazer #296 (“The Curse of the Constantines Part Four: A Good Man”) by Peter Milligan (writer), Giuseppe Camuncoli (layouter), Stefano Landini (finisher), Brian Buccellato (colorist), and Sal Cipriano (letterer). $2.99, 20 pgs, FC, DC/Vertigo.

Meanwhile, over in Hellblazer-Land, Milligan has John violate the sanctity of the “Watchmen clause” – he actually has John sort-of say the name of the comic book in which he appears. If I had been drinking anything at the time, I would have done a spit-take. I mean, really, Mr. Milligan! That’s just not cricket!*

Plus, John does some stupid things in this comic. First, he doesn’t really investigate Finn too much, so he doesn’t really know that Finn might not be the evil Constantine he’s looking for. Of course, we’ve had some clues which John hasn’t seen, but still – due diligence, man! Second, it’s not quite Pop Culture Rule #1 in action, but John ignores Sia to his detriment, doesn’t he? Due diligence!!!! John’s never been all that good an investigator (it’s not his job, of course, but he ends up investigating quite a bit), but you’d think he’d get better at it eventually – he’s almost 60 years old and he’s been digging into the occult for well over half his life, so it’s not like it’s his first rodeo. It’s not even that he’s thinking with his dick, which is stupid but can be understandable. Luckily, the magnificent Epiphany isn’t stupid, and she pays more attention to shit that’s going on. I still fear for her life, but at least she’s not an idiot. Plus, she’s hilarious. Don’t kill Epiphany, Milligan!!!!

Still, for all of John’s stupidity, Hellblazer is still a fine comic publication. Will it last past issue #300? Only the DiDio knows for sure!

* I said something was “not cricket” recently, and my beautiful wife didn’t know what that meant. It’s strange, because she knows a lot of weird shit, but I guess she’d never come across that phrase before. I think I first heard/read it in a comic, which makes yet another reason why comics are awesome!

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆

One totally Airwolf panel:

Shinku #5 (“Throne of Blood Part 5”) by Ron Marz (writer), Lee Moder (penciller), Matthew Waite (inker), Michael Atiyeh (colorist), and Troy Peteri (letterer). $2.99, 23 pgs, FC, Image.

It’s too bad that Shinku has been delayed so long, because it’s really, really good, and I fear that people will have forgotten about it, if they were on board to begin with. The story of a Japanese vampire hunter and the American schmuck she rescues (because he might be able to build a vampire-killing virus) is exciting, intense, bloody, and beautifully drawn by Moder and Waite and beautifully colored by Atiyeh. Three issues came out last year, and issue #4 came out in … January. (Marz writes a column for CBR, and he says he’s going to explain the delay, but as of now, that column has yet to be written/posted.) Now the first arc ends, with Marz setting up another arc nicely – Shinku can’t kill the big bad guy, but she does slaughter a great number of his followers. As the end of an arc, Marz doesn’t care too much about character development – Shinku is there to kick ass and chew gum, and she’s all out of gum – but he does a nice job once again showing how out of his depth Davis is, because he just doesn’t know what to do with himself (he’s not completely useless, but he’s far less competent at the action than Shinku is, mainly because this is her thing). Moder continues to draw the living shit out of this book, and Atiyeh colors it beautifully, but I have to go back and look at the other issues, because it seems like the lines are a bit thinner and the colors a bit softer – I don’t know if I’m imagining it or if someone in the art department changed their style a bit. It doesn’t matter too much – the art is still wonderful – but it is … different, in some way.

I really hope that Marz et al. are back on track with this comic. While I don’t love vampire comics just due to the fact that they’re vampire comics, I do like well done comics, and this is a well done comic that happens to center around vampires (and those who hunt them). Marz is certainly wearing some of his influences on his sleeve, but when you’re writing with such verve, that doesn’t matter as much. If you’ve been waiting patiently for the trade, I imagine it will be out soon. It would be nice to see this comic come out regularly!

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ½ ☆ ☆

One totally Airwolf panel:

The Sixth Gun #26 (“Winter Wolves Part Three”) by Cullen Bunn (writer), Brian Hurtt (artist), Bill Crabtree (colorist), and Douglas E. Sherwood (letterer). $3.99, 22 pgs, FC, Oni Press.

We’re into the middle of the story arc, so things are moving along nicely, as we learn a bit more about how Drake knows so much about the Wendigo and we check in on Gord, Kirby, and the mummy, who are running away from the Knights of Solomon and are trying to find our intrepid hero and heroine. As usual, Bunn tells the story in a straight-forward way that nevertheless allows room for shocks, as the last page shows, while Hurtt draws it all superbly. What can I say? It’s a great comic book.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

One totally Airwolf panel:

What the heck is a thunderbolt, anyway? #182 (“Nothing Stops Justice!”) by Jeff Parker (writer), Neil Edwards (penciler), Terry Pallot (inker), Chris Sotomayor (colorist), and Joe Caramagna (letterer). $2.99, 21 pgs, FC, Marvel.

Parker wraps up his grand storyline with the future Thunderbolts managing to get back to the past, where everyone has a group hug. Yay! I guess the biggest thing about this arc is that Cain Marko is the Juggernaut again. Is Peter still the Juggernaut over in X-Men Land? Either way, the way Marko gets to be Juggernaut again is clever, certainly, and we had to know it was coming. Otherwise, this is basically superpowered humans wailing on each other, which isn’t a bad way to wrap things up. The end of this run hasn’t been as good as most of it, mainly because it feels like Parker bit off a tiny bit more than he could chew and because Edwards just isn’t as good as Kev Walker and Declan Shalvey, who have drawn a good deal of it. He has some really awkward posing in this issue that looks rather silly, and the big dramatic shot of Juggernaut doing his thing looks like Marko is roller skating instead of running. Little things like that are really bothersome, and it makes the book a little less enjoyable.

Parker is still going to write Dark Avengers in the Marvel NOW! Universe, and of course I will get the first issue (as is my mission), but I won’t be continuing along with it. Next issue his version of the Thunderbolts ends, and that will be the end of my involvement. I’m curious how he’s going to write the characters out of the book. Death by monkeys, perhaps?

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

One totally Airwolf panel:

Womanthology: Space #2. “Чaйka” by Blair Butler (writer), Alicia Fernandez (artist), and Rachel Deering (letterer); “The Agency” by Joelle Sellner (writer), Jean Kang (artist), and Rachel Deering (letterer); “All Cats Are Quantum” by Ellise Heiskell (writer) and Maarta Laiho (artist); “How-To” by Devin Grayson (writer). $3.99, 20 pgs, FC, IDW.

I’m a bit torn about Womanthology, mainly because it’s a comic I want to like – it’s showcasing some newer talent, after all – but it’s not really that good. It’s not even that the stories are terrible, they’re just kind of there, and that’s not good enough. Issue #3 was just solicited, and I haven’t pre-ordered it yet, so maybe I’ll have to think about it. I get bummed out when books that go out of their way to feature creators who don’t get much press aren’t that good.

Take the first story. Blair Butler writes about the first woman in space, which is fine, but there doesn’t seem to be much point to it except that Valentina Tereshkova was the first woman in space. I mean, that’s great and all, but there’s not really a story there. Fernandez does a decent job with the art, but again, it’s nothing special. Sellner’s alien invasion story is perfectly fine, with Kang providing manga-esque artwork, but it’s missing some crucial information about what’s going on (not surprising, given that it’s only 6 pages long). Heiskell’s tale about why cats are so important is clever, and Laiho’s whimsical art fits nicely with it, but again, it’s tough to get everything that needs to be said in 6 pages. Short stories in American comics are a bit of a lost art (we need our own 2000AD, it seems), so it’s not surprising that these stories feel like they’re missing something, because the writers can’t quite fit everything they need to into such a short space. It’s disappointing.

Oh well – I’ll think about getting the next issue. We shall see, won’t we?

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

One totally Airwolf panel:

X-Factor #245 (“Breaking Points Day Five”) by Peter David (writer), Leonard Kirk (penciler), Jay Leisten (inker), Matt Milla (colorist), and Cory Petit (letterer). $2.99, 20 pgs, FC, Marvel.

As I’ve noted before, you might not like Peter David’s writing – that’s your prerogative – but the dude thinks about how characters would interact with each other, and he’s not afraid to write an issue full of conversation just to get some things out in the open. In Uncanny Avengers, we saw Havok joining the team sans Lorna, and no mention of her at all. Alex also had a new/classic costume, with no mention of what happened to the other one he was wearing. David already made fun of the “Tron”-like aspect of his costume, so in this issue, he ditches it, paving the way for the new/classic costume he wears in the MN!U. But what of Lorna? David doesn’t ignore their relationship, and he doesn’t callously break them up – he gives them both interesting things to say and they come to an understanding about where their lives are going. Characters in comics don’t compromise, get married, and go off together, so that’s not going to happen, but at least David understands that something needs to be done if Alex is going to mosey off to join the mash-up. They certainly might be broken up, but it’s not an angry break-up – they just both need to be alone for a while. David writes a nice, adult conversation between two people who care about each other but don’t know how to stop doing what they’re doing. Even Lorna, who comes off as slightly more mature than Alex, doesn’t seem to know what to do with herself.

David isn’t quitting the book (in fact, it appears he’s about to revisit a long-dangling plot thread from his run on The Incredible Hulk, if you can believe it), but this is a nice way to clear the decks a bit and move things forward. The cast was getting a bit unwieldy, and the way he wrote this arc, the missing characters can still drop in from time to time (and certainly David has plans for at least one of them, because David always has plans!). So X-Factor continues on its merry way, acknowledging the greater MN!U but not getting too bogged down in it. Refreshing!

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆

One totally Airwolf panel:

The Zaucer of Zilk #1 (of 2) by Brendan McCarthy (story/artist/colorist), Al Ewing (story/scripter), Len O’Grady (colorist), and Ellie de Ville (letterer). $3.99, 30 pgs, FC, IDW.

Ewing and McCarthy’s oddball 2000AD story comes to IDW, and those of us on this side of the pond are awfully thankful – we often hear of these marvelous tales in Britain’s premier comics magazine and wonder if they’ll ever be available to us poor schlubs who live over here in the colonies, where we’re stuck reading The Ravagers. Have pity on us, Britishers!

It’s somewhat clever how Ewing begins this story – in a typical damp English town, with a typical damp English bloke – because we know that weird things are coming, and we think that the typical bloke will end up in as a stranger in a strange land. Ewing turns that on its head, however, when it turns out the bloke is actually the Zaucer of Zilk, a potentate in a bizarre world, who has been trapped in the gloomy world by a gloomy villain. Once he returns to Zilk, he returns to his indolent lifestyle once more, until the villain reappears and kidnaps one of the Zaucer’s admirers, and as he feels responsible, he decides to track her down. Throw into the mix his rivalry with his cousin, the Zultan of Zilk, the ruler of the place (it’s unclear what the Zaucer does except be a celebrity) and the thing pulling the Zultan’s strings, and things are getting difficult for the poor Zaucer!

It’s a weird story, of course, made weirder by McCarthy’s hallucinogenic artwork. McCarthy is one of the visionaries of the comic world, and any chance to check out his imaginative artwork is a treat, and it’s nice that he and Ewing give us a solid story to back it all up. It’s not too freaky, but it does complement the wild art quite well. McCarthy uses computer effects very well and wisely, so they work with his wonderful pencil work but don’t overwhelm it. The effects and the coloring make the Zaucer’s world even wilder, and Errol Raine’s world even danker and weirder – the effects highlight the fact that it’s not a real world, which doesn’t help the inhabitants or the prisoners, but helps heighten the artifice of the book. McCarthy’s artwork has always had a high degree of artifice, which isn’t a bad thing at all. It actually helps ground the more “solid” drawings in his work, because McCarthy’s line work is strong enough to offset the artificiality of it all (yes, I know it’s all artificial, but work with me!).

So, yeah. This is a tremendous comic experience. There’s really no reason not to get this, unless you don’t like joy. I suppose you might be someone like that!

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

One totally Airwolf panel:

Journey into Mystery volume 3: The Terrorism Myth by Kieron Gillen (writer), Mitch Breitweiser (artist), Richard Elson (artist), Bettie Breitweiser (colorist), Jessica Kholinne (colorist), Ifansyah Noor (colorist), and Clayton Cowles (letterer). $16.99, 107 pgs, FC, Marvel.

Huh. I never got volume 2. Off to Amazon!

The Infernal Man-Thing by Steve Gerber (writer), Gerry Conway (writer), Roy Thomas (writer), John Buscema (layouter), Klaus Janson (finisher), Kevin Nowlan (artist/colorist), Gray Morrow (artist), Glynis Wein (colorist), John Costanza (letterer), and Todd Klein (letterer). $14.99, 91 pgs, FC, Marvel.

This includes the original “Song-Cry … of the Living Dead Man!” which the Nowlan-drawn story is a sequel of, plus Man-Thing’s origin, gorgeously illustrated by Morrow. Nowlan’s art is something else, I’ll give you that. Nowlan doesn’t do a ton of work these days, and who knows when he actually drew this, but it’s different than his more mainstream stuff, yet still beautiful. This looks really odd, and I’m looking forward to reading it.

Orion and Edge of Chaos by Gray Morrow (writer/artist). $39.99, 144 pgs, FC, Hermes Press.

Speaking of Gray Morrow, this book is stunning, and I’m very much looking forward to checking it out. The biggest problem is the re-production – a note at the front points out that Hermes didn’t have access to the production art or the original art from Edge of Chaos, so they shot it from the printed comic books. This means it’s a bit fuzzy, unfortunately. Still, fuzzy Gray Morrow art is better than a lot of clear art, so there’s that! Plus, you’ll notice it didn’t fit on my scanner. It’s giant-sized!!!

Pinocchio: Vampire Slayer: Of Wood and Blood Part 2 by Van Jensen (writer) and Dusty Higgins (artist). $10.95, 151 pgs, BW, SLG.

Chris Sims is quoted on the back of this book. Whether that compels you to buy it or not is up to you! Actually, this “trilogy,” which ends with this book (the third volume needed to be split into two parts), is quite good. I’ll have to re-read the first two volumes now that it’s all complete!


Apropos of nothing, Roger linked to this post about how to be a good commenter. I don’t agree with everyone Scalzi writes, but it’s an interesting read. My sole rule about commenting is “Don’t be a dick.” If you don’t know how not to be a dick, you probably are one already. I have no problem arguing with people who disagree with me, but once you start being a dick, you’re just, you know, a dick.

Speaking of Internet etiquette, famed CBR contributor (it’s true!) Jefferson Robbins wrote a bit about the unmasking of the biggest troll on the Internet. I’m not sure if “troll” defines that guy (I always thought a troll was someone who goes to other web sites just to stir up shit, but this dude was a moderator on Reddit … a site I’ve still never visited), but I do find it humorous that someone who posts all this horrible stuff on the Internet and says he’s allowed to do it because of free speech (which I agree with) gets all bent out of shape because his anonymity is compromised and he might have to face the consequences of other people exercising their free speech by calling him an utterly horrible human being. You know how you don’t lose your job because you post awful shit on the Internet? Don’t fucking post awful shit on the Internet! This gets back to being a good commenter. I don’t have problems with people not using their real names around these parts – that’s their choice – but I like the fact that people use consistent user names. I wish people would do that instead of using “Anonymous,” because at least if, say, Third Man makes a comment, I’m fairly sure he’s the same guy who always posts under that name. Back when I started blogging, I was naïve enough to think I could use my real name with impunity. I haven’t regretted it at all, but I wonder if I would have a different opinion if I started today, when things seem even nastier than they did a decade ago. Anyway, I’m an open book. And I don’t worry about anyone outing me for posting horrible shit on the Internet, because I don’t do that!

The Internet, however, is still a wild and glorious place, thanks to the magic of Photoshop. Last week there was a very bizarre streaker on the field at Texas Tech, and a photographer got a great picture from a great angle. And the Internet rejoiced! Then, of course, we had the presidential debate, and no matter what you think of either candidate and who “won” (you can’t win debates, people, you can only win elections!), you have to admit that Romney’s “binders full of women” phrase was a bit odd. And the Internet rejoiced! With a tumblr, even!

I don’t mean to keep having a “hot women” section of the links, but the Internet keeps chucking them up there! So here’s a good reason to love Halloween, here’s a list of actresses from the 1990s who grew up nicely, and here’s a tumblr showing hot actresses. See? The Internet is good for something! (I’ve pointed this out before, but in that first link, you see Sara Jean Underwood, who was a Playmate of the Year a few years ago. I recall watching ESPN a few years ago and seeing a story about Derek Anderson back when he was actually playing well. Anderson and Underwood are both from Scappoose, Oregon, which is up the highway from Portland a bit – if you hit St. Helens, you’ve gone too far! I just find it fascinating that a Playmate of the Year and an NFL quarterback not only went to high school together (Anderson mentioned that he was a year ahead of Underwood, I think), but they went to high school in Scappoose, of all places!)

Hey, let’s check out The Ten Most Recent Songs On My iPod (Which Is Always On Shuffle):

1. “Rave Un2 the Joy Fantastic” – Prince (1999) “All you need is a good walk and a brand new position, then we can spread the real soul, doin’ it like a mission”
2. “Sweet-Lovin’ Man”Magnetic Fields (1999) “When love falls from the sky, nobody ever asks why, you just take it or you leave it where it was”
3. “The Confessor”Joe Walsh (1985) “On the bottom words are shallow, on the surface talk is cheap; you can only judge the distance by the company you keep”
4. “How Much Fun” – Robert Palmer (1974) “You got me higher than I’ve been since I started, couldn’t want you more if I tried any harder”
5. “Welcome to Your Wedding Day”The Airborne Toxic Event (2011) “And you know it’s begun from the beat of the drum and the screams from the mouths of babes, and we pray as we’re watching the charade”
6. “Cassandra”ABBA (1981) “She stood on deck, just a tiny figure, rigid and restrained, blue eyes filled with pain”
7. “‘Til I Whisper You Something”Sinéad O’Connor (2000) “If you’ve never seen a good time, how would you recognise one?”
8. “It Don’t Have to Change”John Legend (2004) “Do you remember how we’d gather ’round and sing all day?”
9. “What’s Left of the Flag”1Flogging Molly (2002) “With madman’s rage well they dug our graves but the dead rise again you fools”
10. “Jack the Ripper”LL Cool J (1988) “Moving my hand like I’m playing the piano, don’t touch the dial, don’t change the channel”

1 Holy crap, it’s a Craig Kilborn sighting in that video!

Well, that was fun, wasn’t it? Why don’t we just leave our post with the Favreau leer?

Oh, Internet. Is there anything you can’t do? Have a nice day, everyone!

batwoman, chew, dc
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