Archive for the ‘Comic Books’ Category

Superman Returns - Good Movie, Bad Theater

Tuesday, July 4th, 2006

My wife and I hired a sitter Saturday night so we could escape to dinner and a movie (this was only the fourth or fifth time we’ve been out without our daughter since her birth). I wanted to see Superman Returns; my wife wanted to see… Superman Returns. Weird.

Since our date night began early—about 5 PM (we had planned to attend Naperville’s Ribfest to eat festive ribs standing up over yellow jacket swarmed trash cans while listening to REO Speedwagon’s live “new stuff” but the weather looked too thunderstorm-y)—we stopped by the theater and picked up our tickets for the 7:20 show. I had a feeling it was sold out, but it wasn’t. Before I ran into the box office, my wife told me to ask the ticket booth guy if there was any good restaurants in the area. Me: “Two adults for the 7:20 Superman.” Booth Goon says something away from the mike while staring at his computer screen. Me: “What?” Booth Goon: “$17.50.” I pass my credit card into the trough under the glass. Booth Goon speaks again, I still think I’m involved, “What?” Then I realize he’s talking to his booth mate. Card, tickets and receipt are thrown into the trough at me. I hop back in my car. My wife asks, ” Did they know any good restaurants?” Me: “No.” We drive around to kill some time and end up at a sports bar in the movie theater parking lot that served very dry fried meat.

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Watchmen Absolute TPB Finally Read

Tuesday, April 25th, 2006

WatchmenIf you haven’t read Alan Moore’s and Dave Gibbons’ Watchmen, you need to because it will expose the contemporary super-hero murder mysteries like Powers and Identity Crisis as shortsighted, insignificant stories. Murdered super-heroes can only mean one thing: Armageddon.

I worked in comic book specialty shops from 1990 to 1995. The Watchmen covers always stood out among all the other comics surrounding it alphabetically by publisher from Warlord to Wonder Woman. I never read them because they were expensive, too wordy and I wasn’t impressed with Gibbon’s art style. I was always more in the mood for Jim Lee’s X-Men and Todd McFarlane’s Spider-Man (I read Grendel and Shade the Changing Man too, so don’t think I’m a complete poser).

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Hellboy Animated Movies Production Blog

Monday, April 10th, 2006

The Hellboy Animated production crew keeps a blog. I’m pretty geeked to see this thing. The blog posts the latest character designs, concepts and background art for the series of 75 minute movies. The first movie is finished or close to it and the team has already begun the second feature. The outlook is hopeful for these direct to DVD movies to capture Mike Mignola’s vision better than the Hellboy live action movie or the animated, Atlantis: The Lost Empire, from Disney’s catalog.

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Warren Ellis’ Next Wave for Marvel Comics Kicks

Monday, April 3rd, 2006

Next Wave TeamWarren Ellis finally gets to have some fun at Marvel Comics with his new Next Wave. I just picked up the third issue and the "Director’s Cut" of the first issue (I’m not a completist, I just missed the first printing, getting in on the second issue). Next Wave is a pirate super-hero team of real, forgotten Marvel characters (Captain Marvel, Boom Boom, Bloodstone and Machine Man (I have loved Machine Man ever since he crushed coal into diamonds in his purple robot hands 20-some years ago)) and a new parody character (the Captain or he could be too obscure for me or a combination of different Marvel Captains). The team used to work for H.A.T.E., but Boom Boom stole their parent corporation’s (Beyond Corp.) marketing plan and the team had to go rogue to save the world from H.A.T.E.’s Unusual Weapons of Mass Destruction (UWMDS). It’s all in the marketing plan, you should read it, an eye-opener.

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A Plot So Common It’s Like Coming Home - Familiarity in RPGs

Tuesday, April 28th, 1998

A sensitive, clockwork knight; an innocent, prepubescent, heir to great weapons of unwieldy and unimaginable power, a hermit scientist/wizard, a washed up mercenary, and a busty thief all thrown together against the faceless shadows of evil and their monstrous henchmen. Battle Chasers, Joe Madureira’s jump into creator owned publishing, pulls all the most loved themes from Japanese RPGs into the pages of a comic. And did the comic industry ever need this genre explored! RPGs are so analogous to comics that comic creators should be kicking themselves in the pants for not thinking of this sooner. I can’t wait until the rogue’s gallery of Battle Chasers take their first ride in an airship, call upon spirits kept in precious gems embedded in weapons and armor to vanquish an enemy boss or grow tired of the endless random battles that they must endure just to build some experience and earn some cash. I anticipate that every Square or Capcom plotline and original inventive device will be exploited by the folks at Image. But who cares? Battle Chasers is still well worth the $2.50 simply because it is completely unoriginal, it gives the fans what they want–familiarity.

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