Here's a little crossover action for your Friday Night enjoyment:
Ooh! That's gonna leave a mark!
I have it on good authority that Bahlactus has a pocket fulla kryptonite and he's not afraid to use it.
The Extremist (not to be confused with the excellent webcomic Death to the Extremist) was a four-issue series by Peter Milligan and Ted McKeever. It was dark and cool and erotic and creepy. The story bounced around in time a little but it was nicely self-contained. Check out the covers below. They need no further commentary and each cover plays off the previous one.
Greetings, blog readers! It is I, King Clownape! I have returned to bring you images which will blow your minds! None of my minds were blown, of course, because I have three. That's why I'm king. Three brains.
Observe (if you dare!) the madness that is Jughead's Time Police. Did you know that your precious timestream is safe only because of the efforts of one Forsythe Pendleton Jones III? His tireless fight against those who would use time travel for their own nefarious purposes should be in the history books. But you know what? It's not! Because if it was in the books it never would have happened! Wrap your single brains around that one! Here, check out the covers. And peel me a banana.
The Periodic Table Of Comic-Book Elements
Wikipedia article on Batman's costume is pretty good but the real gem, as usual, is the discussion page. Here's a relevant quote regarding the kryptonite ring:
And since he's the Goddamn Batman, he only carries it when the plotline dictates.
Greg Burgas from Comics Should Be Good has some nice and accurate things to say about Transmetropolitan.
And now the big news: Fifth-place Eurovision contestants to star in comic book!. They're Bulgarian! They're singers! And they fight crime!
Finally, Manga Dr. Strange!
Since people have been wandering around blabbing about what they're thankful for lately I thought I'd get in on the act. Here are some comic book things I am thankful for and the awesome covers to go with them.
The Authority #12
I am thankful for the alignment of planets that brought Warren Ellis, Bryan Hitch, Paul Neary, and Laura DePuy together for the first twelve issues of The Authority. I can't imagine that story being told without any of those four people being involved.
Astonishing X-Men #2
I'm thankful for Joss Whedon's run on Astonishing X-Men. I'm doubly thankful that John Cassaday is drawing it. Sure, it's been slow but each issue has been worth the wait. Whedon didn't come in like the Pro from Dover and assume that he knew everything about Comics. He worked hard and came up with an awesome story. This latest issue had two "holy crap" moments in it that I'm still smiling about.
Immortal Iron Fist #4
Speaking of awesome creative teams, Matt Fraction, Ed Brubaker, and David Aja are doing magical things with Immortal Iron Fist. For example, they are sticking to a reasonable release schedule. I kid, I kid. This incarnation of Iron Fist is my favorite comic currently on the stands. Check it out if you haven't already.
The OHOTMU Gadget Issue
I am thankful for the existence of the old-school Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe, especially the final issue which was all about the equipment used by the various super-beings of the MU. This thing had cutaway pictures of Avengers Mansion along with specs for Stilt Man's stilts, Wizard's gadgets, and Nomad's discs. Who knew depleted uranium was so useful? The OHOTMU is available as a three-volume Essentials collection. It contains both versions from the '80s and it's awesome.
Finally, I am eternally thankful for the Grand Comic Book Database. Throw 'em some money this holiday season.
Actual content will reappear Real Soon Now but things are slowing down this month because I've seriously overbooked myself. I'm writing a novel for NaNoWriMo (fifth year in a row), I've just started playing on this awesome, new MUSH, and I'm running a tabletop Amber Diceless game. So, the reviews I want to do will have to wait. Things will clear up after the end of the month but until I get caught up on my word count the posts here will be down to two or three a week.
Until then, check this out:
Max Allan Collins and Terry Beatty did a cool comic called Ms. Tree which hopped around from publisher to publisher. The premise was similar to what would have happened if Mike Hammer had married his badass secretary and then been killed during the honeymoon.
Why am I telling you this? Because I'm a member of Hard Case Crime's book club and I just got my copy of Deadly Beloved which is the first Ms. Tree novel. It hits the retail stores in December so keep an eye out for it. Beatty even did the cover:
Also, here's one of the covers from the comic back when it was with Renegade Press. Click to embiggen:
Tomorrow is Thanksgiving here in the States so King Clownape and I went out and foraged for some covers to help celebrate our national day of gluttony and togetherness.
Stack your plates high, folks!
But, er, watch out for genies!
Watch some football!
Eat a lot of turkey and take a nap.
And enjoy the leftovers for weeks to come.
Happy Thanksgiving! See you on Friday!
Last Sunday was Veterans' Day here in the U.S.
Noetic Concordance salutes all our veterans along with everyone currently serving in the military. Thank you all.
The 'Nam was a Marvel series about The Vietnam War that ran for 84 issues in the late '80s and early '90s. It was a well-written book that took an unflinching look at the war and its effects on the people and countries involved. Well, as unflinching as the comics code would allow but they managed to tell some compelling stories.
I don't have a complete run of the book because it got a little stupid near the end but the original team of Doug Murray, Michael Golden, and Larry Hama is one of those teams that makes comic-book history. Also, say what you will about Jim Shooter but he greenlit the project in the first place. Here are some of my favorite 'Nam covers.
I just found out about Marvel Digital Comics. I don't generally enjoy reading comics on my computer but they have a hell of a selection and a lot of free samples. Monthly subscriptions are $9.99 and annual subscriptions are $59.88. This definitely won't replace my comic-shop habit but it's a cool idea.
Also, Patrick McEvoy just left word in my comments section that he's signed an exclusive contract with Marvel's Licensing division. So, starting the first of 2008 you'll see more of his awesome art under the Marvel logo. He's still going to be working on Starkweather: Immortal, though, for which I am glad.
Here's one of my favorite examples of Patrick's work. It's from The Gatesville Company #1 which is a title I really enjoyed.
This past Sunday was Veterans Day. This week, King Clownape and I want to salute our veterans with a collection of Weird War Tales covers from the 1970s. Weird War had its share of But They Are Actually Skeletons!! covers and most of them were about WWII. Here are some of the best and the weirdest.
Tune in Friday for a more serious salute!
Your superior intellect is no match for our inferior weapons!
Ladies and gentlemen, I present the next internet meme:
Skeleton vs. Samurai vs. Robot!
Apes, people. Nazi apes. You're welcome.
There's gonna (probably) be a Starkweather: Immortal Movie. I'm enjoying the comic so far and I'm looking forward to seeing how this shapes up.
Looking for a bunch of Kirby Monster Stories which were never reprinted? I wasn't but I sure am, now!
Are you a plumber? Do you want to be in a comic book? Click here to realize your dreams! Also: Free Toilet!!
And now, here's a sequence in which Guy Gardner gets beat up by a mouse:
With an election day just past, I wanted to focus on some awesome political-office-related covers. General Zod's Campaign is still going strong, by the way. Here are a few other superheroes who have thrown their spandex into the ring:
Lex 2000 #1
This striking cover comes from the time that Lex Luthor was elected President of the United States. Comparisons with the actual election of 2000 flew fast and furious. The situation in the DC Universe's version of America reminds me of Alfred E. Neuman's perpetual campaign slogan: You Could Do Worse; You Always Have.
Captain America #250
Roger Stern and John Byrne teamed up for a story in which Cap runs for President and would have won but he drops out of the race in order to keep on bustin' heads. That's a good thing. If he'd been elected someone might have tried to assassinate him.
Green Arrow #60
DC skipped the entire Universe forward a year and then spent the next year catching the readers up on what happened. It was a pretty cool idea even if it had a few speedbumps along the way. My favorite change was the election of Oliver Queen as Star City's mayor. Yeah, let's see how that kid from Pittsburgh does in an archery contest!
Doom 2099 #28 & Doom 2099 #29
And now, two covers from Warren Ellis's run on Doom 2099. President Doom. 'Nuff said.
This is even better than that time Zod put his face on Mt. Rushmore!
Little Dee is one of my favorite webcomics. It's cute, funny, and well-drawn. The video above is taken directly from a couple of weeks' worth of strips and, well, you just have to see it. No one can be told what "We Rogues of Wool" is.
Yesterday was election day here in The States so, this week, Weird-Ass Cover Wednesday is devoted to our elected officials!
Prez is the best comic series ever written about a teenager who became President of the United States. Nothing more needs to be said.
3-D Bullwinkle For President #1
Hey, Rocky! Watch me pull a swing state out of my hat!
The Governor and J.J. #1
Governor Drinkwater was a widower so his zookeeper daughter fills in as First Lady. Zookeeper! Governor! This thing just writes itself!
Here's another Prez cover. As you can see, he was a very hands-on Commander-In-Chief. Trivia: "Vampire in the White House" is also the title of Dick Cheney's upcoming autobiography.
It's Alice vs. Alice. Oh, no! She just picked up The Looking Glass and smashed the other Alice over the head with it!
You know, most sites would charge for this sort of content. You're welcome.
I got home too late to make it into the official record but that doesn't change the fact that Bahlactus has spoken!
The Long Halloween is a 13-issue limited series by Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale which came out in the late 90s. It's could have been called Batman: Year Two because it followed Batman: Year One chronologically and it involved the origins of most of Batman's rogues' gallery. The covers were different from nearly anything else on the racks at the time and they are all beautiful. By the way, Tim Sale is the guy who paints all of Isaac Mendez's pictures for Heroes.
This cover is a prime example of why I love Tim Sale's work. It's a beautiful combination of art and graphic design. I'm a sucker for limited palettes when they're used well. That combined with the black, empty background really sells this cover.
The composition on this cover is superb. The images of Batman and the Joker didn't hit me until I'd been staring at it for a few seconds. When I saw them I actually got a little chill. Mission accomplished.
Now, this is impressive. DC found a way to make Labor Day scary.
Thanksgiving, on the other hand, needed absolutely no help. It's already the scariest holiday. However, dang! Look at it! That's really creepy!
The Crowded House video I posted the other day got me thinking about Split Enz which was Neil Finn's band before Crowded House. When this song was recorded in 1980, Neil was a couple of years younger than his son Liam (who tours with Crowded House) is now.