Every day this year, I will be examining the first pages of random comics. This month I will be doing theme weeks (more or less), with each week devoted to a single writer. This quasi-week: Warren Ellis. Today’s page is from Lazarus Churchyard: Alraune, which was published in Blast! magazine #7 (I think) and is cover dated December 1991. It was reprinted in Lazarus Churchyard: The Final Cut in 2001 by Image. Enjoy!
Continue Reading »
The site is all about finding those great moments for women in superhero comics…you know the ones…the ones that leave you with goose bumps, that leave you breathless, that leave you in love. The site is open to submissions from anyone, which is only fair as we all have different definitions of what inspires us from women in superhero comics. And what better month for a post like this than March – Women’s History Month.
Inspired by Sue’s efforts I thought I’d do a piece about some of the moments that have meant the most to me over my years of reading. I make no argument that these are the “best ever” moments…just that they’re the moments that have curled my toes. Which ones curled yours? Let me know, and better yet, submit your own over on THIS!
Word of warning – if you haven’t read the story I’m talking about, be careful of spoilers!
Click to enbiggen on any image!
Man, it’s hard to write about Planetary. So many others have already done so! But I’ll give it the old college try, just for you guys. I love you guys so much!
Continue Reading »
If a cigar can be just a cigar, and not some obvious phallic symbol to be endlessly sucked and played with, then can a superhero ever be just a superhero, or is it always representative of a deeper, more complex need within us?
Taking eight flights and traveling something like 14,000 miles in the last two weeks I’ve had some reading time on my hands. Thankfully I had friends with me, including Batwoman, Buffy, Hellblazer, Supergirl, Unwritten, Secret Avengers, and Wolverine. A girlfriend once told me that she loved to fall asleep with a book, it felt like company. Similarly, I was happy to have my comic books with me. The familiar faces were a comfort and a distraction.
As I write this, I’m slumped on the couch having just returned from New York Comic Convention. This was my second time at NYCC and I can confirm that it is a very different sort of affair from its West Coast counterparts like San Diego International Comic Con. Like New York itself, the convention is a little darker and more crowded, with less physical space for a similar amount of people and moodier lighting, the convention has an engaging urgency to it. Underneath all of the brash fun of the comic books, costumes, toys and games there is a definite New York atmosphere which bleeds through. Meeting up with all of my East Coast and European friends and colleagues in person is quite an experience too, since if we do talk, it is usually only talk online.
Continue Reading »
Nextwave: Agents of H.A.T.E. Warren Ellis (writer). Stuart Immonen (artist). Wade Von Grawbadger (inks). Dave McCraig and Paul Mounts (colors). Marvel. 264 pages. $34.99, softcover edition issues #1-12.
So let’s start the year off right with some balls to the wall comics fun, yes?
I’ve been talking a lot in this column over the last year about the lack of unabashedly fun comics lately…or at least in the comics that I seem to read, and how I find myself yearning for genuinely fun books. Pure fun was what had me falling for Heralds and maybe of the best stories from Marvel’s Strange Tales II and Girl Comics, for Amanda Conner’s Wonder Woman/Power Girl team up short in Wonder Woman #600, for the best of Wednesday Comics, Beasts of Burden, everything Kate Beaton puts on paper, and even Scott Pilgrim.
But where could I get more…I was hungry for it?!
Well lucky for me I wasn’t reading comics when Warren Ellis and Stuart Immonen’s hilarious Nextwave: Agents of H.A.T.E. first released, so I got to pick up the new collected edition and discover it for the first time.
It was exactly what the doctor ordered.
A fantastic superhero book that manages to simultaneously both celebrate and parody everything superhero, Nextwave was so much fun I almost couldn’t stand it (except I totally could, it was awesome).
The set up is a somewhat bizarre team up of characters: Monica Rambeau (formerly Captain Marvel and Photon); Tabitha Smith (aka Boom Boom – and a variety of other names too tedious to mention); Aaron Stack (aka The Machine Man); Elsa Bloodstone “monster hunter”; and The Captain (formerly Captain XXXX) as Agents of H.A.T.E. (The Highest Anti Terrorism Effort) that go rogue when they discover that H.A.T.E is being funded by terrorists (via The Beyond Corporation).
In which Bill says hyperbolic things about a children’s cartoon and invites you on a guided tour of the comics internet (ask for Babs!).
DECLARATION OF THE WEEK: DC should only ever hire teenagers to write the Legion of Super-Heroes (sorry, Chris Bird).
SHAMELESS PROMOTION DEPARTMENT: A little while ago, I was shanghaied to Australia and not released until I answered a bunch of questions about Aquaman. Well, now you can finally read my harrowing ordeal, along with a bunch of other comics-y articles, in Extra Sequential #4, which can be found online here or here, in your interface of choice.
My Box of Comics posts usually arrive fashionably late, but in this instance, the party ended weeks ago and the Box of Comics is still picking out a tie. So let’s give a quick look at the really good stuff, the comics worth praising from the past few lunar cycles. I suspect many of you have overlooked some (or all) of these gems. (And again, thanks to the Discount Comic Book Service, and also HeavyInk, for providing me with my regular comics fix.)
I have a love/hate thing with webcomics.
On the one hand there are some damn fine cartoonists and writers putting out some damn fine comics for free and what could be better than that? On the other hand there are about a zillion webcomics out there that are really really bad and it can be frustrating to sort through them to find the gems. Having done a webcomic myself for a year (a crappy journal comic that updated daily Monday through Friday no less…daily!) I know how hard it is to put out a quality piece of work on a regular schedule for free. Okay, I don’t know anything about quality – but I DO know about the schedule stuff and the free stuff and how time consuming and absolutely unrewarding it can be – but with no disrespect intended to any hard working creators out there – I think we can all agree that not all webcomics are created equal.
Steve Pugh goes nutty. What’s not to love?
Continue Reading »
A linkpost on a Sunday? What is this, 2009?