Thursday, March 13, 2008

Things I Shouldn't Have To Complain About

Many times, my experiences with the various and sundry forms of entertainment that help to occupy my waking hours pass without negative incident. (Or to put it simply, most of the time when I'm having a good time, everything goes as planned.) But every so often, little annoyances pop up. As solitary incidents, I can usually overlook them... but occasionally the same thing happens one time too many... and that means that you, gentle reader, get to listen to me complain about it.

Tonight's complaint? Staples.

We're all familiar with the way a comic book is put together... it's usually about 16 long sheets of paper with pretty pictures, folded across it's width held together by two staples near the edges. Simple, right? I thought so too. With a greater and greater frequency, I'm finding that the innermost sheet isn't bound by one of the staples. It's pulled free. I certainly didn't do it... I have more care for my comics than that, certainly. (My file cabinets, and bags/boards should attest to that fact.)

Now, I'm a person who can deal with minor issues. I wound up purchasing two copies of the same issue of Gargoyles a few months back. It was pulled when it originally came in, and then apparently a reorder pulled another copy. I didn't notice until I got home, but hey... mistakes happen. And interestingly, this issue was already the subject of a mistake... apparently on the first printing, there was an error... a page of art was re-used. But it's no biggie.

However, when at least one of my books every other week has the very middle almost ready to fall out, it starts to get annoying. Maybe this is just another sign that Jim Shelley's Paper Comic DeathWatch is winding down time for the industry. But I can't see any good reason for repeated quality issues like this. The culprit this week was my issue of The Mighty Avengers.

Maybe I need to start tracking which books have this issue. The two that leap immediately to mind are both Marvel publications. Please fix it. Contrary to what others might think, I really don't like to complain. Every moment I'm here pounding away at my keyboard like a demented monkey struggling with the finer points of King Lear is a moment I'm not enjoying my comics... and isn't enjoying comics the whole point of reading them?

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

New Comic Day 03/12/08

Well, this week looks to be the quiet after a few very busy weeks. A break will be nice, and possibly give me a chance to better acquaint myself with Super Smash Brothers Brawl. While my own tastes are more grounded in the traditional 2-D fighting game (particularly those of the SNK variety), I'm starting to see the appeal of the game as I actually learn what it is I'm trying to do in it.

Nevertheless, I'm here to talk about comics, not games. Here's the anticipated shopping list. On the DC side of the tracks, we have:

  • SUPERMAN #674

Meanwhile, adds to my list the following offerings:

  • X-FACTOR #29
Regarding Marvel Comics Presents, I'm learning over the years that I'm actually a fan of the Anthology format. I even read the anthology-formatted US edition of Shonen Jump for awhile. Yes, I gave money to the vile terrorists that funded Naruto and Yugioh attacks on our great pastime. Primarily I was doing this in the hope that Ruroni Kenshin would be added to the roster, but I learned through the readng that there were a few titles that were enjoyable.

An anthology is a great book when you're not quite in the mood for a full on meal, so you order the appetizer platter. You might not like everything they bring you, but you're going to enjoy at least some of it. In the case of Marvel Comics Presents, Marvel has done the admirable job of cooking up a couple of pretty good staples in the form of Weapon Omega and Vanguard, two twelve part stories to anchor the more adventurous additions to the book... stories from lesser known (or unknown) writers, stories that are a little more 'out there'... On the whole, I've been rather pleased. Pleased enough, I suppose to continue to pay a $1 premium for it, but hey... so far I feel I'm getting my money's worth.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Gnashing of Teeth? Check. Commence Wailing!

Newsarama broke the story that John Rogers, the writer who has consistently stunned me with the new Blue Beetle, is leaving the book.

Newsarama: Right up front, John, are you leaving Blue Beetle?

John Rogers:
It's temporary, although I don't know exactly when I'm coming back to the book. What happened is, essentially, Keith and I always wanted to tell the origin story and #25 wraps up that origin for Jaime.

This continues the trend where I post about something I'm feeling enthusiastic about, and the universe (oh so subtley) reminds me that I'm not supposed to. In the Newsarama interview, Rogers states that he'll be working on a big crossover mini-series (I wonder what that might be part of?) and an ongoing series.

I do want to say that the past 24 issues have been excellent... and at this point, I'm willing to give the 25th issue a pass... but I don't see how this could avoid being an awesome issue.

Long term plans on the book aren't specified, beyond Wil Pfeiffer is doing at least the first story arc following Rogers' departure. Rogers does sthate though, that he'd like to return to the book when he can, but wants to focus on his new projects.

Thanks, John, for one of the best DC-produced superhero comics in recent memory.

Monday, March 3, 2008

New Comic Day 03/05/08

Well, due to a work week that's working out pretty far from my own expectations, I don't think I'm going to be able to pick up my new comics on Wednesday this week. Another part of the less-than-ideal is that because my boss is on vacation, I'm finding myself with plenty of extra time on the non-Wednesday parts of this work-week.

Enough that I'm actually going to get back to posting my shopping list, at the very least.

So here it is... what I plan to spend my hard-earned scratch on this week:



TWELVE #3 (OF 12)

The return of the Dark Tower in comics is something I greatly look forward to. (I was quite happy with the previous adaptation.) While I don't doubt that there are plenty who took issue with it, I though it portrayed the meat of the story very well. And while these early chronicles of Roland Deschain's life don't convey the bizarre post-apocalyptic fantasy that fills the novels, it's still some great reading.

The Twelve is also an interesting project. The timely coincidence that caused it and Dynamite's Project Superpowers is interesting in and of itself. But I'm particularly amused to see that some characters are actually shared between the two. The one that comes immediately to mind is Dynamic Man, Curt Cowan.

I'm still kicking a few story ideas around. A few of them are for Flashback Universe, and one or two of my own devising. In particular, I think I've got a neat angle on a comic story based on the Terminator movies and TV show. If anybody has any clue as to who has the license, I'd be appreciative if you could kick it over to me.