Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Comics This Week

This week was a fairly light week as far as comics purchased. New Avengers # 40, Daredevil: Blood of the Tarantula, Fantastic Four # 556, DC Universe 0 and I picked up a copy of Young Liars # 2 which I missed from a few weeks ago.

New Avengers was interesting, telling the start of the Invasion from the Skrull's point of view. The ending shows another hero that is really a Skrull. I won't spoil the surprise, if it really is a surprise. I'm not sure how many people will be surprised, this hero seems to have been named as a Skrull online awhile ago.

Daredevil I found to be a typical story that could have been done at almost anytime in the hero's continuity. While the monthly series is one of my favorite reads this was just bland.

DC Universe didn't make me want to pick up the coming Final Crisis. I have to admit that I haven't been following very many DC titles lately. Everytime I pick up a DC title I just find I can't get into it. I was enjoying Manhunter, so hopefully I'll be able to pick that up when it comes back. Again the ending of this issue has what is supposed to be a BIG surprise and again it seems that this reveal has been leaked online for awhile now. Nice art, but I still haven't decided if I'll pick up the series when it comes out or not.

Young Liars was better than the first issue, but I'm still at something of a loss with this series. I loved Stray Bullets and really want to like this series. The first issue really left me cold and that's why I originally passed on the second issue, but my local shop owner convinced me it was worth a second look. I'll stick around for another issue or two to see what's happening and than decide if it's worth continuing.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Echo # 2

I know, another review that is beyond late. This book has been out for weeks now, but I wanted to at least make mention of it. The first issue of Echo really was just a setup for what is coming now. We only saw a little of what was happenin. This issue the storyline starts to open up and we start to find out more about the characters.

From what I've read so far I'll be back for the next issue. Terry Moore's art is always first rate and it continues to be so in this series so far. I like the way he can be realistic and than throw in a "bigfoot" moment in the art.

I'm intrigued by the storyline so far and am interested to see where he goes with it. I was a semi regular reader of Strangers In Paradise, but I felt it wallowed in its melodrama too much, and after reading it for so long I had to finally give it up.

It's kind of interesting that three of the big independent creators from the old days of the black and white explosion: Dave Sim, Jeff Smith and Terry Moore all came out with new books around the same time.

Joss Whedon's Dollhouse

From what I've read they've started filming the new Joss Whedon tv show "Dollhouse".
The show stars Eliza Dushku as the main character Echo. Eliza was Faith in the Buffy shows as no one needs to be reminded. Fox explains the show:

"Echo (Eliza Dushku) is a young woman who is literally everybody's fantasy. She is one of a group of men and women who can be imprinted with personality packages, including memories, skills, language—even muscle memory—for different assignments. The assignments can be romantic, adventurous, outlandish, uplifting, sexual and/or very illegal. When not imprinted with a personality package, Echo and the others are basically mind-wiped, living like children in a futuristic dorm/lab dubbed the Dollhouse, with no memory of their assignments—or of much else. The show revolves around the childlike Echo's burgeoning self-awareness, and her desire to know who she was before, a desire that begins to seep into her various imprinted personalities and puts her in danger both in the field and in the closely monitored confines of the Dollhouse."

I'm very excited that Joss is returning to television, after making what I consider three of the best shows ever in Buffy, Angel and Firefly. The new show has a lot of his old writers coming back to work with him, which is another plus. Another actor from the old shows will be in this show. Amy Acker, better known as Fred, will have a regular role in the series.

Hopefully this will be a show that they will give a better chance than they did Firefly. I for one will be watching when it comes out, hopefully it will be on the Fall schedule.

Walking Dead

I know I'm way behind in even trying to talk about the latest issue of The Walking Dead. But I have to make a comment on the latest issue, the end of the attack on the Prison. Kirkman has been saying before this storyline started that there were going to be big changes in store for the comic and not all the characters would make it through. That was an understatement. I can't think of any comic that basically wipes out over half the cast in one storyline.

I don't want to give too much away, just in case anyone hasn't read the end of the storyline yet. The effect of not knowing hits you like a bat upside the head. No matter who I thought was going to die I was still taken by surprise.

For readers who see this series as a zombie comic you're doing yourself a disservice if that's the reason you don't pick it up. Yes, there are zombies, but they are not the focus of the series. Some issues go by and you don't even see a zombie. This is a character driven series, a story of people coping with loss and trying to survive in a world that is completely changed from what they know.

This is one of my favorite comics being published today. It is published by Image Comics. The above imagine is of the newest trade collection that should be out soon. It's the eighth trade. The series is coming up to its 50th issue. How many comics from the Big Two make it to issue 50 nowdays? Much less one from one of the other publishers.

If you haven't tried this comic yet, you really should. It's not what you expect and I really think you'll be surprised by how much you end up liking it.

Giving Fans A Bad Name II

The heirs of Superman writer and creator Jerry Siegel were awarded the copyright to Action Comics #1. Now what all this means legally is for better minds than mine to figure out. There's still a lot to be figured out, it seems that they only have the rights to what appeared in that first issue, so where does that leave characters like Lex Luthor and others that came in later issues? Where does that leave DC as far as publishing Superman comics? Lots of issues to figure out.

What to me is almost shameful is the reaction of a lot of fandom to this decision. Instead of celebrating the win of one of the creators of one of the most famous icons in the world these fans are worried what this might mean to their daily fix of Superman. They are calling the Siegels greedy for wanting what should be rightfully theirs. People are claiming it would be all right if it was Jerry Siegel winning the award, but since he's dead that would be kind of hard. Why shouldn't his family share in some of the riches that Jerry's creation brings in.

A contract was signed is what is used to side with Warners. They didn't have to sign the contract, they wanted the quick money. Well, it wasn't that much money, even for the time. What they wanted was to get their character in print. At that time no one had any idea what a comic book character could achieve. If there were any ideas they probably would have imagined things alongside what comic strip creators achieved. Even though comic strip artists sold their rights they could end up making a lot of money and work on the strips they created for years.

If anyone thinks it is fair for two naive, young creators signing away their life's opus without knowing what they are doing is missing the point of characters like Superman, who represent the good guy looking out for the little guy.

Giving Fans A Bad Name

My question is pretty simple: Why should a woman have to wear a button to tell strangers not to grope her breasts?

What am I talking about? You can read more about it at this post from Occasional Superheroine.

Reading the guy's justification of the whole thing is...I'm not sure what it's like. I'm reminded back in the day when Amazing Heroes was published and they had a column by a supposed young comic fan and it read like the worst cliches of comic fans. You read it not sure if it was a parody or real. That's what reading this was like, thinking that this couldn't be real, but unfortunately it is.

Comic Fans worry about comics being accepted as worthy of adult readership, maybe they should worry about comic fans being accepted as adults. With stunts like this it makes it hard.