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What I bought – 16 June 2010

Let us not be deluded by forms of government. The word may be republic in France, constitutional monarchy in Prussia, absolute monarchy in Austria, but the thing is the same. Wherever there is a vast standing army, the government is the government of the sword. (Benjamin D’Israeli, 1852)

Ms. Kelly Thompson didn't like this cover, but I kind of dig it! Yes, it's girl-on-girl action - you gotta problem with that? Ruas' covers just creep me out, man! It's the semi-annual issue! Hot damn, Bisley's covers kick ass! Dynamite manages to get a Green Hornet crossover into this book, which is quite a trick! Calling central casting! Nothing's tougher than a cat smoking a cigarette! Spooktacular! I wonder if there is any lamentation of the women in this comic? A work of staggering genius?  I think so! Chicks with swords sell like hotcakes! It's all optical illusiony!

Atlas2Atlas #2 by Jeff Parker (writer), Gabriel Hardman (artist, main story), Ramon Rosanas (artist/colorist, back-up story), Elizabeth Breitweiser (colorist, main story), and Ed Dukeshire (letterer). $2.99, 22 pgs, FC, Marvel.

The latest Comic Critics notwithstanding, issue #2 of Atlas is another good issue, as after issue #1′s slightly espionage-ish feel, Delroy Garrett hooks up with the Agents and everyone gets to fight. First they fight Mr. Lao, who doesn’t like Delroy, then we get the first of two views of the fight against the weird zombie things from issue #1 (it’s a flashback), then they fight rock creatures in Iceland. Holy Hannah, that’s a lot of fighting (one might even say that everyone was kung fu fighting, if one were so inclined). It leads up to the revelation that (shocking!) someone is behind all of this. I know, what a shock! As usual, the plot in a superhero comic matters less than how the creators work with the characters, and Parker does a fine job with the A o’ A. Delroy is a bit cynical but also awed by the agents, and the banter between the characters is humorous. Parker drops some interesting tidbits in there about the future of the team, and it’s nice to see Derek Khanata again. I’m not entirely sure why we needed the back-up story – it tells us a bit about the team, but not much – but I suppose it existed simply so Hardman wouldn’t have to draw all 22 pages. Speaking of Hardman, he continues to do wonderful work – his vision of Venus singing to Mr. Lao is really well done. And his “superhero” stuff keeps improving – his Icelandic rock monsters are pretty danged cool. If Hardman can only do 17 or so pages an issue, I’m perfectly happy to see the back-up stories, especially when his 17 pages are so much cooler than many others’ 22 pages.

I’m still glad that Jeff Parker has those negatives of Joey Q, because it means we keep getting issues of Atlas. Whoo-hoo!

One totally Airwolf panel:

The fact that he's ripping a cow's leg off just makes it so much better!

The fact that he's ripping a cow's leg off just makes it so much better!

BlackWidow3Black Widow #3 (“The Name of the Rose Part 3″) by Marjorie Liu (writer), Daniel Acuña (artist), and Nate Piekos (letterer). $2.99, 22 pgs, FC, Marvel.

Far be it from me to question the all-mighty wisdom of Joey Q and Dan Buckley, but I simply don’t get their publishing strategy. After issue #5, Liu and Acuña are off the book and Duane Swierczynski and Manuel Garcia are taking over. I’m not surprised that Acuña is gone, as he’s never struck me as a terribly fast artist, but why switch out one not-terribly-popular writer for another not-terribly-popular writer? You understand, I’m not talking about quality here, as many people think when we start discussing the business of comics. If we were talking about quality, plenty of creators would never work again. I’m talking about the fact that Liu isn’t popular enough that she can sell a mid-level character’s book on the strength of her name, and neither is Swierczynski. They’re both novelists who haven’t set the world of comics on fire. If this is another S.W.O.R.D. situation, where the pre-orders killed the book before issue #1 even shipped, why bother continuing it? Iron Man 2 is in the rearview mirror, it didn’t goose sales on Black Widow, I doubt if ScarJo is calling Marvel and begging them to keep publishing it so it can spruce up interest in a spin-off, so what’s the deal? If Liu wanted to bail on the book after one arc, that’s fine, but this just seems weird. But, as I point out, I’m not a marketing genius.

Anyway, that’s too bad, because this is an entertaining comic and although I can’t say Liu has done a ton with the character work, she has a good handle on the espionage stuff and she’s willing to show Natasha as less than impressive (she gets beaten up again in this issue, and while you might think it’s odd that I think that’s a good thing that she gets beaten up, I just think it’s cool that she’s not SuperWidow and that there are, after all, people in the world who might be stronger than she is) and the story keeps unspooling nicely, as we get some more information about why Natasha was almost gutted in the first place. I’m not sure why Natasha needs a blonde chick to lure Woody Allen out of the nightclub when she, Natasha, is a hottie in her own right (and Woody doesn’t know who she is), but it gives Acuña a chance to draw a hot blonde with a low-cut dress, so there’s that. Acuña continues to do a great job with the art – Natasha and Elektra’s fight is very keen, as is the battle against the big bad guys at the end of the issue. This is a good book, and I’m looking forward to reading the next two issues.

I’ll probably give Swierczynski a chance, because he’s not bad, and I dig Garcia’s art, but I do wonder what’s going on with the shift in creative teams. It seems awfully arbitrary so soon into the book’s existence. I mean, Marvel has cancelled books for less, and they never saw the need for a Black Widow ongoing before, so why now? Beats me.

One totally Airwolf panel:

BURN!!!!!

BURN!!!!!

Fables96Fables #96 (“Rose Red Chapter Three: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs”) by Bill Willingham (writer), Mark Buckingham (penciller), Steve Leialoha (inker), Andrew Pepoy (inker), Lee Loughridge (colorist), and Todd Klein (letterer). $2.99, 22 pgs, FC, DC/Vertigo.

I wouldn’t say this is a disappointing issue of Fables, because it continues the story of Rose Red and Snow White and their sibling relationship, but Willingham apparently wants to get through some more important stuff, so he powers through the story of Snow White that we’re all familiar with just to get to the point, which is that Rose Red has been blaming Snow White for centuries for abandoning her and maybe she shouldn’t have done that. Willingham tosses a couple of interesting twists into the story, but not too much. He brings up the idea that Snow White was raped by the dwarfs, for instance, but that’s an old idea and Willingham wisely moves past it quickly. There’s a lot of narration, which makes the issue plod along a bit, but the tortoise with the tea cup on its back is kind of neat. It just gets us from point A to point B – it’s kind of like a Yugo that way – but as I’ve been reading Fables for eight years now, I know that it’s a small bump on the road.

Mark Buckingham really doesn’t get enough credit on this book, because his art is wonderful. His clothing is well designed, from the peasants’ garb to the nobles’ finery, and his marvelous work in the forests is gorgeous. Buckingham also does a masterful job showing how the characters change – not necessarily age, but change – as on three successive pages, we get Rose crying and looking miserable, then cruel and haughty and beautiful as she prepares to meet Snow again, and then back in the present in bed, looking miserable again, but in a different way than the previous scene. It’s a neat trick, and Buckingham does a great job with it. Buckingham works fast, too, even though he needs a break every so often. It’s just beautiful art, and it helps the issues when Willingham is off his game a bit, as he is here.

But I’m still looking forward to the next issue, because I know it will get better. It always does!

One totally Airwolf panel:

I just love how there are several ensorcelled princes wandering the woods!

I just love how there are several ensorcelled princes wandering the woods!

FourEyes4Four Eyes #4 by Joe Kelly (writer), Max Fiumara (artist), Nestor Pereyra (colorist), and Drew Gill (letterer). $3.50, 27 pgs, FC, Image.

Well over a year after issue #3 came out (it showed up on 20 May 2009), the end of the first “act” shows up, and it just depresses me. I know that Kelly and Fiumara have to eat, so I get why this has to wait, but it still depresses me. Four Eyes is really, really good, and I hope people discover it through the trade paperback that was recently solicited, but I fear that Kelly will never get to tell the story he wants to. Maybe Fiumara will get too busy to finish it, and while another artist might do fine on it, Fiumara is excellent and it would be a shame if he took off. Meanwhile, Kelly finishes the arc well, as Enrico is found in the cave after the big horrific experience last issue. He found shelter in the dung heap with the baby dragon, with whom he bonds nicely and wants to keep as a pet. Mr. Fawkes wants to put it out of its misery, but Enrico doesn’t allow him. So this sets up the rest of the story, which I hope we’ll get to see.

Kelly also does a very cool job showing how Enrico has grown up a bit during this arc, as he confronts Mr. Boccioni after returning home. Enrico does it subtly, as he suspects Boccioni had something to do with his father’s death and knows that Boccioni may have left him in the cave on purpose, but he never says that out loud. It’s much more of how they look at each other – Fiumara kills on the panels – and they just know that they’re enemies, even though Enrico’s mother still thinks of Boccioni as a protector. The dragons are always neat, but Kelly and Fiumara’s work on the relationships between the people – when Enrico’s mother rejects her suitor, for instance – makes the book shine.

I’m loving this book so much, and I get sad that it comes out so danged slowly and probably doesn’t gain any readers because of it. I encourage you to pick up the trade when it comes out (which, I hope, will be soon) and I really hope that Kelly and Fiumara can work a tiny bit faster on the comic. Last year two issues came out. I would be happy if we could get one more this year, and maybe they could aim for three annually? That would be groovy!

One totally Airwolf panel:

06-16-2010 04;07;45PM

Lots of cool panels in this book, but this one is just so keen (and I can't figure out how to get the space out of there - sorry!

Lots of cool panels in this book, but this one is just so keen (and I can't figure out how to get the space out of there - sorry!

Hellblazer268Hellblazer #268 (“Sectioned Part Two: Apotemnophilia”) by Peter Milligan (writer), Giuseppe Camuncoli (layouter), Stefano Landini (finisher), Trish Mulvihill (colorist), and Sal Cipriano (letterer). $2.99, 22 pgs, FC, DC/Vertigo.

So, you know, holy shit. Milligan just keeps getting better on this, doesn’t he? I mean, Shade the Changing Man is right in his wheelhouse, but his work with John is really impressive here, as our hero tries to summon our favorite cool-coat-wearing Metan and finds it’s a bit more difficult than he thought. He’s becoming more and more insane, which is probably why Shade eventually shows up – his Technicolor Dream Coat is fueled by the crazy, don’t you know! John decides that he doesn’t really need some of his body parts (hence the name of the issue), which leads to some shocks, and there’s something very weird going on with Epiphany, and Milligan brings back one of his best characters and gives this character a truly great line. Why would I spoil it for you, good readers?

Milligan keeps fucking with John, and I love it. He’s turning the screws nicely, and while this probably works better for you if you read a 20-year-old comic, it still works if you have no idea who Shade actually is, because John still remains the focus, and it actually feels like he’s going insane, which is more than it’s felt occasionally in the past. And the creepy hospital remains creepy even though Milligan doesn’t go the clichéd, Tim-Robbins-in-Jacob’s Ladder hospital route – it’s bright and clean, but the people working in it are fucked up. So that’s neat.

You know, I was digging this arc until this issue, but this issue took it to a new level. Yowza! And I hope nothing happens to that returned character! That would honk me off.

One totally Airwolf panel:

Don't worry, it's just apotemnophilia!

Don't worry, it's just apotemnophilia!

LoneRanger22The Lone Ranger #22 (“Resolve Part Six”) by Brett Matthews (writer), Sergio Cariello (artist), Marcelo Pinto (colorist), and Simon Bowland (letterer). $3.50, 22 pgs, FC, Dynamite Entertainment.

I do so wish The Lone Ranger would come out more often. Why do I like all these books that come out so rarely? Confound it!!!!!!

Last issue I worried that John’s sister-in-law and nephew were not long for this world, or at least one of them wasn’t. I also hoped that Matthews wouldn’t fall into that trap, and he doesn’t, as Linda and Dan both survive! Yay! I hope that didn’t spoil for you, but come on – that’s good news, right? Oh well – they survive. Deal with it. I wanted to spoil how they survived, but it’s just too cool. So there you go.

Otherwise, the story continues nicely along, as John and Tonto realize they probably shouldn’t have left Linda and Dan alone on the homestead, Sheriff Don gets two visitors, one much less welcome than the other, and Mr. Winthrop makes a fateful choice. It’s your typical slow burn kind of issue, with some moments of gripping violence and a great deal of simmering. Next issue finishes the story arc, so we’ll see how Matthews “resolves” everything. Or if he even does. It’s all about long-term storytelling with The Lone Ranger!

One totally Airwolf panel:

When someone throws a corpse at you, you KNOW they're evil!

When someone throws a corpse at you, you KNOW they're evil!

Shuddertown3Shuddertown #3 (of 4) by Nick Spencer (writer), Adam Geen (artist/colorist), and Thomas Mauer (letterer). $3.50, 22 pgs, FC, Image/Shadowline.

Okay, so I’m not going to write about the story in this issue. I’m pretty sure this is a four-issue mini-series, so we’ll see how Spencer wraps it up next issue. Hernandez does some police work, a reporter crashes a party to find out some information, and there’s a long torture scene. There you have it.

I want to focus on Geen’s art. Geen stopped by the blog after issue #1 came out, and while I haven’t met him and don’t know what he’s like, he was gracious enough to not call me a tool for listing his name as “Green,” which was cool of him. And I do like the art on this series – it’s a weird blend of photo-referencing and minimalist backgrounds, and Geen’s coloring makes the book spookier than the script implies. But … here’s this issue. Man.

I felt the rumblings of discontent when I turned to page 2 and saw James Gandolfini. Oh dear. The use of actors as characters in comic books is now pretty standard, but that doesn’t mean I have to like it. Geen goes a bit nutty with this, though, and I want to question it. I hadn’t noticed if Hernandez is based on any specific actor, but now I have to wonder. If Geen hasn’t been doing this in the first two issues, why now? We get Tony Soprano, and then we get what is possibly William H. Macy, and then we get Giovanni Ribisi, and finally Julianne Moore. I can’t quite figure out who the reporter is, but I have to assume it’s another actor. This bugs the hell out of me, and when it happens with one character or one that doesn’t show up that often, I can forgive it (Colin Ferrell as Godfrey McClaine in Sparta U. S. A. annoys me, but I don’t recognize if any other characters are actors, so it doesn’t bother me too much). But this is a lot of famous people showing up in this comic, and I don’t get it. What I never get about it is why artists use famous people. I have to imagine that artists know people, so can’t they take pictures of those people and put them in the comic? Is it because they’d have to pay those people (although why would that be, if they’re people you know and are willing to stand there and get their pictures taken?) and actors’ images are in the public domain? I don’t know, but it’s very distracting, and it makes me like the art less. If Geen was using unknown people and filtering it through whatever you filter it through when you do this stuff, I think I would enjoy this a lot more. I just keep seeing the actors, and it bugs me.

I don’t want to pick on Geen, as I know this is SOP for some artists and, honestly, I don’t have a huge problem with it. What I object to is using so many famous people in one issue. Give Gandolfini a beard or something to mix it up a bit! Sigh. I’m still looking forward to the resolution of the mini-series, and I hope I’m not too distracted.

One totally Airwolf panel:

Well, I'd talk!

Well, I'd talk!

Blacksad volume 1 by Juan Díaz Canales (writer), Juanjo Guarnido (artist), and Studio Cutie (letterer). $29.99, 176 pgs, FC, Dark Horse.

Holy crap, this looks phe-frickin’-nomenal. I’ve heard so many good things about this, and I’m really geeked to read it.

Box 13 by David Gallaher (writer), Steve Ellis (artist), Scott O. Brown (letterer), and Mike Paar (colorist/art assistant). $13.00, 101 pgs, FC, Red 5 Comics/Comixology.

I had already ordered this when I saw a bit of it in the Red 5 Free Comic Book Day comic, which looked pretty cool. So I’m glad I had already ordered it!

Conan: The Spear and Other Stories by Timothy Truman (writer), Paul Lee (artist), Dave Stewart (colorist), Richard Starkings (letterer), and Jimmy Betancourt (letterer). $14.99, 119 pgs, FC, Dark Horse.

I really enjoy the Dark Horse Conan series. I just thought I’d share that with you.

The Complete D. R. & Quinch by Some Grumpy Old Northamptonshire Man (writer), Alan Davis (writer/artist), Jamie Delano (writer), Mark Farmer (inker/colorist), Steve Potter (letterer), and Jack Potter (letterer). $17.99, 101 pgs, BW/FC, Rebellion.

Well, this is disappointing. My 20-year-old copy of this is in color, but it doesn’t have the few pages written by Jamie Delano. This is NOT in color, except the Jamie Delano pages. What in the hell is up with that? I assume the original pages were colored, and even if they weren’t, in the copy I have, the coloring is fine. Why on earth is this mostly in black and white?

Even so, if you can’t find any old copies, this is a fantastic comic. It is one of the ten funniest comics I’ve read, and by far the funniest thing Grumpy Old Man Moore has ever written. And, of course, it looks great.

Madam Samurai volume 1 by Gary Young (writer) and David Hitchcock (artist). $12.99, 78 pgs, BW, Scar Comics.

I flipped through this, and it looks really keen. I’m not sure how Young will get a female samurai to Victorian England from feudal Japan, but we shall see.

Temperance by Cathy Malkasian (writer/artist). $22.99, 240 pgs, BW, Fantagraphics.

I’ve never read anything by Malkasian. I’m looking forward to it!

I know nil-nil draws get your blood pumping, so this year’s World Cup should be your cup of tea! So far, my favorite matches have been:

1. U. S. 1, England 1. Well, of course – I’m American! And I love reading all the people in the English tabs getting all bent out of shape about the fact that they didn’t destroy us. Boo hoo, ya wankers!

2. Germany 4, Australia 0. As I spent some of my formative years in Germany, they’re kind of my second team (or my favorite when the Americans don’t make the field), and they absolutely destroyed the Aussies. I always like when goals come from crisp passing and excellent finishes rather than set pieces or luck (see: Clint Dempsey), and the German goals were all like that. As much as I like the country of Australia, they looked utterly lost. Go back to playing the didgeridoo and drinking Carlton, ya footy-playin’ bastards!

3. Switzerland 1, Spain 0. I always love when the darlings get knocked off (unless it’s someone I like, of course), and that Swiss goal was pretty wacky. Everyone just falling over themselves!

Now we’re into the second round, and I’m looking forward to the American match against the trash-talking Slovenes. Really, Slovenia? And Mexico just scored a goal against France in the 64th minute. How Javier Hernandez wasn’t offside I’ll never know. Man, that was close.

And let’s move on to The Ten Most Recent Songs Played On My iPod (Which Is Always On Shuffle But Which Often Gets Reset, A Vexing Dilemma):

1. “Any Way You Want It” – Journey (1980) “I was alone, I never knew what good love could do”
2. “All My Little Words” – Magnetic Fields (1999) “Now that you’ve made me want to die you tell me that you’re unboyfriendable”
3. “Space” – James (2001) “Gotta learn to see yourself a total stranger”
4. “Somebody Save Me” – Cinderella (1986) “And that shit you ate for breakfast, well it’ll only give you cancer”
5. “Word Bomber” – Chumbawamba (2008) “Throw your rhymes at passers-by”
6. “Come Sail Away” – Styx (1977) “But we’ll try best as we can to carry on”
7. “You Keep Me Hangin’ On” – Supremes (1966) “But how can we still be friends when seeing you only breaks my heart again”
8. “Cathedral Wall” – Marillion (1998) “And I will love you but I won’t know you anymore”
9. “Come Alive” – Foo Fighters (2007) “Still I tried to find my way spinning hours into days”
10. “Watershed” – Indigo Girls (1990) “Every five years or so I look back on my life and I have a good laugh”

No one got the totally random lyrics last week, as they were from “Flippin’ Tha Bird” by Ruby from their debut album Salt Peter, released in 1995. Not a bad tune, and not a bad album. And how about we give a look at some new totally random lyrics!

“Well I get so lonely when I am without you
But in my mind, deep in my mind
I can’t forget about you
Good times and faces that remind me
I’m tryin’ to forget your name
And leave it all behind me
You’re comin’ back to find me”

Yeah, they’re easy. But they were on my mind! Hence the randomness of the lyrics!

Have a nice day!

42 Comments

Maybe I’m late to the party, but what’s with all the Airwolf references?

It’s a reference to a bit Dave Campbell used to do on the great Dave’s Long Box site (Dave, in turn, got the bit from Ernie Cline, a comedian/writer/poet who had a whole spoken word bit on using Airwolf as an adjective).

Thanks for the ScarJo link, Greg! I propose a random hottie link each week to add to your random lyrics (that this week are from Boston’s Long Time).

Maybe my memory is a bit hazy but that Atlas cover almost seems like an homage to the cover from Harbinger #1.

Also, try rooting for Portugal. We have freaking Brazil in our group and we already tied our first game!

I’m still pissed that she won a Tony Award.

I usually like the sweethearts to lose too, but since my family is Spanish, I root for Spain (as my second team). My first team is Mexico, where I’m from and I am ecstatic about our victory versus France. What a goal by Chicharito (Hernandez).

Another game I enjoyed was Argentina versus South Korea and another one is Brazil versus North Korea.

Word, Brian.

I absolutely hate it when some Hollywood star parachutes in to Broadway and gets the votes simply on name recognition, beating out serious theater actors who have been busting their asses for years on the stage. Happens all too often lately.

It bugs me almost as much as when they flood the cast of an animated film with Hollywood stars, instead of using the brilliant voice actors who have spent years perfecting their craft.

By the by, in case anyone wondered, I actually did see the play on Broadway that she was in.

I had no idea she had won a Tony.

What play was it and how bad did she suck?

Arthur Miller’s A View From the Bridge.

She didn’t suck. She just wasn’t particularly good – her deficiencies were heightened by the fact that she was acting opposite of Liev Schreiber, who was absolutely brilliant in his role. Schreiber practically took on the identity of the guy he played, while Johansson seemed like she was doing a bad Edith Bunker impression.

@Greg: Couldn’t agree with you more on Black Widow…it’s turned into quite a good book and I just don’t understand the thinking behind switching the creative teams so early…especially because, not unlike what happened with S.W.O.R.D. being canceled a few issues in, they can’t have really known the book was not doing well or was not going to do better or whatever, when they made the decision…which must have been almost from go as they announced it with full creative team in place and doing interviews before issue #3 even dropped. Sometimes comics are such an annoying mystery to me. Like you said, perhaps Liu wants to leave…but I don’t know why she would…this is a great book for her to continuing making a name for herself on…I guess maybe she has too much on her plate? X-23 starts up in September I think…and this ends in August…maybe it was her decision…Hmmm. A real shame either way. It’s also a shame to lose Acuna’s gorgeous art here too, as it’s working well I think for the dark tone and cool spy look of the book (so long as he keeps that costume zipped up most of the time!) :)

I couldn’t DISAGREE with you more however on the Fables Snow White/Rape thing though. As you said, it HAS been suggested before (in 1001 Nights of Snowfall and probably other places) and it makes sense in the world of Fables, which is not all squeaky clean and Disney like that this would be a possibility of Snow’s time with the dwarves. But I don’t think you can drop in one/two lines in one panel that suggest the repeated rape of a teenager and then just “wisely move on” and not address it. I get that he didn’t want to get bogged down in Snow White’s story because he’s trying to set up Rose Red’s arc…but surely a writer with his experience could have found a way around this…without suggesting the repeated (months!) nightly rape of a teenage girl and no intention of actually addressing it.

@Brian: I totally wanted/meant to see that play ScarJo was in with Liev…but didn’t manage it, hearing your take, I feel less bad about being lazy and not going. Thanks! :)

While she was cheesy, I think the play was still worth it for Schreiber. He was excellent (and the play mostly revolves around him).

Another lame Tony Award winner was Catherine Zeta-Jones, who seemed to have spent her entire practice time just getting “Send in the Clowns” right – she did, but as a result, the rest of her performance was blah. Granted, her competition was less impressive.

Schrieber was so good that I wish I saw Fences if only to be able to say with certainty that Schrieber deserved the Best Actor Tony.

Kelly Thompson: “not unlike what happened with S.W.O.R.D. being canceled a few issues in, they can’t have really known the book was not doing well or was not going to do better or whatever, when they made the decision…”

I’m guess you didn’t read the interviews or are just calling Brevoort and Gillen liars (I’m not saying you are calling them liars, but I’ve seen people call claim it before on this very subject) it has been said that the order numbers for the very first issue weren’t high enough to keep the book going and they knew this even before the first issue even shipped.
I do agree with that the quick and sudden change in the creative team for Black Widow IS very strange though. Only reasonable explanation I can think of is something happened on Liu’s end that’s keeping her from working on it anymore.

I wanted to spoil how they survived, but it’s just too cool. So there you go.

It is WAY cool. And it’s even got a sort of Wold Newton vibe if you are looking for it.

That and the Conan collection were all I got this week, and the Dark Horse Conan is indeed terrific. Trades are definitely the way to go on it, though, I think.

Didn’t Liu mention in CBR’s weekly X-Position this week, that she ended up being too busy to continue on Black Widow?

Kelly: I knew you didn’t like the rape thing, ’cause I read your blog! Without getting too, too into it, I think that Willingham, while not addressing it in this issue, HAS addressed it throughout the run, with Snow gradually coming out of her shell and starting to trust Bigby. When this series first began, I just assumed she had been raped by the dwarfs, so having it baldly stated and then dismissed didn’t bother me. The entire arc of the character has been, in part, her dealing with the rape, so that’s why I don’t mind that Willingham moved on from it. I do agree that perhaps he should have just left that page out and let our imaginations fill in the blanks, but the fact that he did put it in didn’t really bug me.

So much high-falutin’ theater talk! We don’t get much o’ that stuff out here in the desert!

D.R. and Quinch was printed in colour? Makes me wish they would have printed it in colour again this time around. Still, one of my favourite Moore books. Love it so much more than his other 2000 A.D. stuff (well, the stuff that i’ve read anyway :P).

Hellblazer *better* be good! But I probably won’t find out for like 12 to 18 months. The second trade only hits this month, so… But I’m hoping for good things.

@Joe H: Jeezus man. I’m calling nobody a liar…where are you getting that? I read plenty of stuff about the cancellation when it happened, including some stuff from Gillen, I’m simply saying that it bums me out that when pre-orders for a book are low a book is sometimes (as in the case of S.W.O.R.D.) not even given a chance to actually get out there and be great before getting the ax. Sure pre-orders were low…of course they are, nobody knew about the book or what it was going to be or that it was going to turn out to be great…which is was…but it was given no chance to continue, because it was canceled pretty much right out of the gate. Bums me out, that’s all. I’d hate to see a similar thing happen here with a massive creative team switch at issue #6 on Black Widow.

@Greg. Yeah, I knew about the rape as well both from 1001 Nights and just kind of inferring from other stuff said throughout Fables, so it didn’t come as a shock or anything, I just think he should have left it alone I guess…if he wasn’t going to deal with it here. But I guess I also don’t think he’s done such a great subtle job of dealing with it all along, though you know I am a fan of Fables, I wouldn’t say that’s been something that I think has been brilliantly handled. Anyway, don’t want to derail your comments…moving on.

As the comic only had two colour strip pages in those days (the centrespread) DR & Quinch was originally black and white. With the exception of the Delano one-pagers which were printed on the back cover. Like all the 2000AD stuff that was published by Eagle/Quality in US format, it was coloured (usually horrendously) specifically for that, so I assume that’s the version you’ve read before?

Regardless, it’s still hilarious.

Cosh: The copy I have was published by Fleetway. The coloring isn’t superb, but it’s not terrible, either. I just looked at it and saw that they specifically mention that the coloring was “created” for that volume, which I didn’t know. I just assumed it was originally in color. It looks a bit like the Delano pages in this one, which is why I thought it might have been colored originally.

Good to know about the history of 2000AD!

Go back to playing the didgeridoo and drinking Carlton, ya footy-playin’ bastards!

Well, at least you didn’t tell us to drink Fosters.

funkygreenjerusalem

June 17, 2010 at 5:58 pm

That would honk me off.

I know what it means from the context you use it in, but it still sounds dirty.

1. U. S. 1, England 1. Well, of course – I’m American! And I love reading all the people in the English tabs getting all bent out of shape about the fact that they didn’t destroy us. Boo hoo, ya wankers!

I think most Brits are more annoyed at the goalie for dropping the ball… if they are bent out of shape, it’s more at the USA media running articles like the New York Post did, with the headline ‘USA WINS 1-1′.
Which is getting a bit carried away, and doesn’t really help America’s rep abroad for being self loving, sore winners and a bit dim.

As much as I like the country of Australia, they looked utterly lost.

They were.
Very average team, and a clueless coach.
Also funny as everyone just expected them to do as well as they did last World Cup, which was a shock, and didn’t quite grasp Germany is a giant in the sport.

Go back to playing the didgeridoo and drinking Carlton, ya footy-playin’ bastards!

USA WINS 1-1.

We’ll quit when you do!

Actually, the USA should come join the Oceania Cup. We’re giant of the game there. We won a match 31-0. The whole cup is just us humiliating small island countries. If Israel is in Eurovision, I don’t see why other countries used to winning at most sports, but not soccer, can’t come join in.

But I don’t think you can drop in one/two lines in one panel that suggest the repeated rape of a teenager and then just “wisely move on” and not address it.

Well, I disagree with the idea that revenge makes things better, but she did spend several years planning and then executing her revenge on the dwarfs, and as shown then, although it killed her marriage, it did seem to give her closure over the incident.
So, it was raised and addressed, and to not going into it is consistent with Snow White’s dealing of it.
Not saying it’s a great or realistic way of dealing with it, but it’s consistent.
(And quite frankly, as I think it was a totally naff character move in the first place – especially as to me the ‘don’t mention the dwarfs’ throughout the book felt like a joke, I really think it is best to just leave it and move on).

Ted: I may be a Yank, but I’m not a total Philistine!

FGJ: Yeah, that headline was stupid. I hope they were evoking the 1968 Harvard/Yale football game, which ended in a 29-29 tie. Harvard scored 16 points in the final 42 seconds, so it was a pretty impressive comeback. Much more impressive than the football match. Silly New York Post!

The Post obviously meant that because we were such underdogs and the less talented team, a tie isn’t such a bad thing, and in fact should be thought of very positively, nearly like a win. There’s nothing boastful or dim about that, and it’s nothing like being sore winners. If anything, that headline shows modesty and humbleness: it admits that we weren’t the better team and got lucky and that we should be ecstatic to have gotten out of there with a tie–hence, calling the tie a victory. FGJ’s response, and what he characterizes as England’s response (though I hope it’s not true) is just another example of the world manufacturing reasons to hate the U.S. There are plenty of legit reasons to be annoyed by the US; you don’t need to make up stupid bullshit.

And Australia was dreadful. I thought they were just holding back to prevent injuries and be rested for the WC two weeks ago when the US beat them so easily, but nope, I guess they really are pretty bad. Too bad because they were a lot of fun to watch in 2006.

Well I am of the opinion the United States played for the tie…..Bradley didn’t even think of going for the win…even when England STOPPED ATTACKING with 14 mins left….We could have used our speed to press the brit backline but what does Bradley do…? He brings in Holden for Altidore! Grrr… He played not to lose…and let Fabio off the hook

Shame about Black Widow….and the situation with Snow White has been hinted at all series long…with the Storybook Love and 1001 nights of Snowfall being major signposts…

The Post headline is definitely an homage to the Harvard headline, and as such should not be read as “self-loving.”

That said, certainly can’t blame a non-American for not getting an obscure very American reference, so I can see how the headline could be misinterpreted.

Actually, the USA should come join the Oceania Cup. We’re giant of the game there. We won a match 31-0. The whole cup is just us humiliating small island countries.

Not any more. Australia is part of the Asian Football Confederation now, so now it’s just the New Zealanders humiliating small island countries.

Speaking of New Zealanders and self-congratulatory headlines, I did like the paper that reported the result ‘Australasia 1 – Slovakia 1′. I suppose that if Russell Crowe can be an Aussie, then why not.

funkygreenjerusalem

June 18, 2010 at 2:12 am

Harvard scored 16 points in the final 42 seconds, so it was a pretty impressive comeback

Wowsers.
What happened to the other team?
They leave the field or something?

There’s nothing boastful or dim about that, and it’s nothing like being sore winners.

It makes sense if it’s a reference to the game Brian and Greg think it is, but otherwise it is dim and being a sore winner (well, drawer).

There are plenty of legit reasons to be annoyed by the US; you don’t need to make up stupid bullshit.

Who is making shit up?
And who is genuinely annoyed?
It’s sports!

And that’s America’s rep in the sense that Aussies are lazy slackers and the Pom’s are whingers, French are arrogant and Irish are stupid – don’t take it personally, people don’t really think it, it’s just what we say.

And Australia was dreadful.

No one is denying it… not even the team.
I doubt that coach will be around after this, without a miracle come back.
Even if you don’t blame him – and the line up changes were really odd – someone needs to fall on their sword for that.
We were hoping in my house that North Korea would take some serious punishment from Brazil to take the heat off, and then South Korea at the hands of Argentina… but it looks like it’s gonna be us wearing the dunce cap.
We’ll maybe win or drawer against Ghanna and then Serbia, but I don’t think we’ll see another 2006.

That said, certainly can’t blame a non-American for not getting an obscure very American reference, so I can see how the headline could be misinterpreted.

I’ll mention it, but it’s definitely been sent around and laughed at as a ‘they really don’t get soccer at all’ and a ‘geez, they need to be number one at EVERYTHING’.
It read a bit like in 30 Rock, where Jack says that NBC makes up Olympic Sports, like Tether ball and synchronized tennis, so that Americans will watch and see them win more medals.

The game is so famous they even did a documentary on it a couple of years ago, and the title of the documentary was also Harvard Beats Yale 29-29. The headline is definitely a famous sports headline in America.

It was especially notable in retrospect because of all the famous people who were at Yale and Harvard at or around that time. Al Gore, George Bush, Tommy Lee Jones (who actually played in the game for Harvard!) and Garry Trudeau (who based the character of BD in Doonesbury on the quarterback of Yale at the time, Brian Dowling).

16 points in 42 seconds is a bit of an exaggeration (although it’s still amazing), by the way, as the countdown starts right before they score the first six. They added the two-point conversion. They then made an on-side kick (where you kick off to the other team in a play designed to bounce off of the other team so that you can then recover it) which worked, so they were working with good field position. They then scored the last 6 points as time expired, then added a two-point conversion for the tie.

Dang Greg, I was really hoping to see what panel from Blacksad got to qualify as being Totally Airwolf. Excellent comic, that.

Sorry, Sam! As it’s such a big thick book, I’m waiting to read it. I’ll get around to it!

She just wasn’t particularly good

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Scarlett Johansson is like Communism; they look good on paper, but the execution is always lacking.

funkygreenjerusalem

June 18, 2010 at 7:59 am

They then scored the last 6 points as time expired, then added a two-point conversion for the tie.

And as one, every Yale player and supporter burst into tears which lasted for a week?

Meanwhile, Slovenia are doing pretty well – better bust out some of that magic.
(Though I’ll be honest, I’m praying they get another three in the second half, just to take the heat off of us! On the other hand, turning it around would make the more interesting game… damn I’m torn.)

Dang Greg, I was really hoping to see what panel from Blacksad got to qualify as being Totally Airwolf. Excellent comic, that.

I had a flick through at the shop, and damn near every panel was totally airwolf.

It’d have to be the tiger and the cat playing tennis though.
That was the page I opened to – having never even heard of the book before yesterday – and it damn near blew my mind.

Plenty of ‘Brits’ were rooting for USA (Me legitimately because I have an American offshoot of my family.) Plus great comeback for the States today against mighty Slovenia!

Christ, FGJ, what nonsense. I’m guessing that there were some British papers considering going with the headline, England Loses 1-1. It’s the same thing. Disappointed with a tie vs thrilled with a tie. It’s a figure of speech and an obvious one that you have to try really hard to get offended by, but not to worry, you managed.

“Sorry, Sam! As it’s such a big thick book, I’m waiting to read it. I’ll get around to it!”

You pussy! Read the darn thing already!

Best,
Hunter (Pedro Bouça)

I doubt that coach will be around after this, without a miracle come back.

My understand was that Pim was going to quit anyway after the World Cup, regardless of the result, whihc does make him sort of a lame duck.

funkygreenjerusalem

June 19, 2010 at 6:35 am

Christ, FGJ, what nonsense. I’m guessing that there were some British papers considering going with the headline, England Loses 1-1. It’s the same thing. Disappointed with a tie vs thrilled with a tie. It’s a figure of speech and an obvious one that you have to try really hard to get offended by, but not to worry, you managed.

Are you thick or just playing at it?

What are you even actually upset about?

Also, British papers wouldn’t have gone with that headline – it seems to be a specifically American thing, based on a specific event in a sport that is only popular in America, hence the misunderstanding about it.
I think everyone’s explained it enough now, where it originated, and how it’s not used anywhere else… so, an American figure of speech, that gets lost in translation – particularly when it comes to a sport Americans seem to be vocal about not understanding.
(You can have a yell about that, but there are so many jokes in so many American shows about not understanding Soccer, that you’ve given yourselves a rep… which again, plays off how every nation likes to give stereotypes to tease every other nation by).

Seriously, which part in the posts has you still confused, or unclear?

And again, who the hell is offended in this thread, apart from you?
I’m certainly not… did you read my posts?

Hey Greg,

Since you asked, all characters are people Nick Spencer had requested them to be based on. Well, most of them anyway. And I see your point, but at this point I have to keep doing it to keep the characters consistent looking. I’ll live and learn. Some people haven’t been bothered by it but of course, some people have.

Adam: Thanks for stopping by and for being cool about it. It’s certainly not the worst thing in the world, but it jumped out at me in this issue, so I thought I’d mention it.

Aussie here, felt someone should call you out for the ridiculous Australian stereotype :P

Nah, just kidding, your alright, keep up the good work :)

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