Showing posts from August, 2011


GEOFF JOHNS, WRITER. JIM LEE, PENCILS.  SCOTT WILLIAMS, INKER. ALEX SINCLAIR, COLORIST. PATRICK BROSSEAU, LETTERER.  $3.99  (24 page main story and  4 page sketchbook feature)NOTE: Do not- - - DO NOT ! - - read this review if you have not read your copy of JUSTICE LEAGUE #1  yet!  Instead, pick it up and read it now.  I’ll wait for you.  This is the book that many comics fans have patiently waited for.  It’s so monumental an event that even DC made sure everybody knew how important it was by only releasing two super-hero titles this week: FLASHPOINT #5 - - the end of the current era, and JUSTICE LEAGUE #1 - - the beginning of the new age.  Is it a really a huge event? - - - Is it a significant break-through? - - - Is it worth the hype and worth the money?   . . . . .  Well . . . . . . . . . . I’m happy.Artist extraordinaire Jim Lee is a personal favorite.  As I mentioned before, I am buying this book for the art, so a good story to go along with it would be a bonus.  The art does not …

Tomorrow is also when the Universe re-starts - - - again

Thanks to Dave at Captain Blue Hen for bringing this  YOU TUBE video to my attention.  This is meant to be funny, DC fans.  Please don’t send anyone hate mail.Even though I share a name with one of the main characters in the video, my views are more in line with those of the pretty lady.  I’ll be taking a dip but I’m not going in for the full swim.

PREVIEWS: What’s new in TPB for Wednesday 8/31/2011?

I wanted to keep this review separate from the preview of new August 31 books I wrote about yesterday. It deserves a treatment all it’s own.  I missed the new series when it debuted, but I did check out the first trade paperback and  - -Wow!  Keep reading . . . . . . . . . .PLANET OF THE APES VOLUME 1  (BOOM! Studios)  Specially priced $9.99 introduction to the first four issues of the new series.  Daryl Gregory, writer.  Carlos Magno, artist.  Juan Manuel Tumburus, colorist Chapter 1.  Nolan Woodard, colorist Chapter 2-4.  Travis Lanham, letterer.Finally!  - - - A reason for me to get excited again about PLANET OF THE APES !! I go way back with this material.  I read the original novel (which preceded everything else) way back when I was in middle school and discovering many science-fiction masterpieces courtesy of my school library.  The novel floored me, and I was even more delighted with the film version (the famous one with Charlton Heston).  Then came some disappointing paperba…

PREVIEWS: What’s new for Wednesday, August 31, 2011?

THE VAULT #2 of 3  (Image Comics)  Sam Sarkar, story.  Garrie Gastonny & Sakti Yuwono, art.  Garrie Gastonny & Bagus Hutomo, cover.  The story may be dark, but the art work on display here is blinding in its’  illumination.  I can’t believe the detail, especially the more difficult facial features in the close-up views.  Backgrounds, foregrounds, machinery details, landscapes and vistas - -  it’s all so photo-realistic.  Wow. I just had to start this off by talking about the great art to be admired in this series.  Now, on to the story . . . . . . . . .The dark secrets of the treasure pit on Sable Island that were hinted at in Issue #1 begin to be revealed in THE VAULT #2.  Some secrets are better kept locked away and unseen, as the explorers find out.  At the end of Issue #1 a massive vault was hauled out of the treasure pit just as a furious storm/hurricane begins to threaten the island. Naturally, the explorers who invested in the expedition want to open it immediately. Con…


UNDERWIRE   ( Top Shelf Books ) October 2011 release, listed in August PREVIEWS.   Graphic novel, black and white, 80 pages.  Auto-biographical material. Mature Readers 16+.  Jennifer Hayden, writer/artist. I was intrigued by the premise for this graphic novel when I read the description in the August PREVIEWS, and curious about the contents.  I consider myself fortunate to get an advance look at this novel.  UNDERWIRE  is a delightfully quirky, sketchy and irreverent look at the life of a mother of two children (now in her forties) and the obsessions and compulsions that make up her everyday life.  I couldn’t stop reading, chuckling and smiling until I got to the very end.  Fortunately, it’s a fast and absorbing read. I’ve also been impressed by the quality of almost every auto-biographical comic work that I’ve read or examined in the last two years.  It’s a sub-genre in comics that is sometimes overlooked and neglected (count me among the guilty).  Granted, it’s also harder to find.…

DC: The New 52 Prologue

We're here. Less than a week away from the debut of the new 52, in the form of Justice League #1 but Geoff Johns and Jim Lee. We've been waiting for months, hearing all different things, and within days we'll have access to what is already set to be the top-selling comic of 2011, reported at over two-hundred thousand copies (for comparison, it's rare and very significant for a comic to sell over one-hundred thousand in the direct market, and it only generally occurs for highly anticipated launch issues or big events).
Justice League number one. Comic's biggest superstar creators. Iconic characters. The beginning of a new, unprecedented era.
I'm sure the book will be...well, exactly as expected. Major superhero stories, basically an epic summer blockbuster in comic book form. But I find myself not caring that much. With all we've heard about it so far, it's an origin story that I'm not that interested in reading. We know the characters, w…

BALTIMORE COMIC CON: Big attendance, fund-raising, costumes

taken from the official press releaseBALTIMORE, MARYLAND - August 24, 2011 - The Baltimore Comic-Con would like to extend a gracious "Thank You!" to all of those who helped make the 12th annual show a success.   The success of the show would not have been possible without the contributions of all exhibitors, guests, staff and most importantly – the fans. Much of the show's success was made possible by the attendance of the Guest of Honor, Stan Lee, who made his first appearance at the show this year. As a founding father of Marvel Comics, Lee's presence was a great draw to fans, retailers, and guests alike. In addition to his appearance at the show for autographs and photos, Lee was also the focus of a special panel moderated by Jimmy Palmiotti.The guest charities who attended the show -- the Hero Initiative, Comic Book Legal Defense Fund (CBDLF), the Baltimore Human Society, and the 'Ringo Scholarship Fund -- collectively raised over $14,000 to support their wor…


Baltimore , Maryland COMIC CON August 20, 2011:  There is a new series of weird western one-shot books based on the popular role-playing game DEADLANDS.  Three books have been introduced so far, distributed through Image Comics, with the fourth one scheduled for release in October 2011.  Audience members of the Baltimore Comic Con Visionary panel were introduced to the creators, writers, artists and editors during a spotlight presentation.   They included writer/editor Ron Marz, writers Jimmy Palmiotti and David Gallaher, artists Lee Moder and Steve Ellis, and Visionary Comics executive director and writer/colorist C. Edward Sellner.L to R:  J. Palmiotti; R. Marz; D. Gallaher, S. Ellis, C.E. Sellner  (missing from photo: L. Moder)Sellner explained that he purchased the publishing rights from Pinnacle Entertainment, owners of the DEADLANDS  role playing game property.  Visionary’s initial comic book debut began with the four one-shot titles (three of four released so far) and then a po…

DC Endings: @GailSimone's Secret Six

One thing I didn't anticipate with the DC relaunch was the emotion of all the current books ending these last couple of weeks of August. Batgirl, Red Robin, James Robinson's Justice League, Superman, Supergirl and many others have come to an end with a mixture of sadness and the promise of what might have been. I saw Keith Giffen at his Baltimore Comic-Con booth over the weekend and mentioned that I was sorry to see Doom Patrol go. "Yeah, that one hurt", he said, shaking his head. But by far the book I'll miss the most is Gail Simone's Secret Six.

When I talk about Secret Six, I often say something like “I can’t believe what Gail Simone is able to get away with.” And that’s true, but it occurs to me lately that I’ve done a disservice to the book by focusing on that. It’s not the best thing DC published because it was shocking, though it sometimes was, or that it featured the most diverse cast in comics (admittedly a low bar), it’s because of the the book’s inc…

PREVIEWS: What’s new for Wednesday, August 24, 2011?

MARKSMEN #2 of 6  (Image/Benaroya)  Script by David Baxter.  Art by Javier Aranda, Garry Leach & Jessica Kholinne.  Cover by Tomm Coker.  Fan Expo Canada wraparound cover by Nam Kim & Jessica Kholinne.“Post-apocalyptic science fiction adventure” - - - I used that short description last month to lead into my review of MARKSMEN #1.  It still serves to describe the contents of Issue #2, which goes on sale Wednesday, August 24th.    After reading about the events that occur in Issue #2, we still don’t know the time period in which MARKSMEN takes place or even how things happened to get to where they are today.  I did have some pre-solicit information from Benaroya Publishing that explained some of that. However, I can’t share that with you since I can’t locate that information and I also can’t recall any of it.  What I do plan to do is just sit back and enjoy the ride. What you may appreciate are some battle scenes  (and a good knock-down fight) that are wonderfully depicted by th…

BALTIMORE COMIC CON: Day Two Images, part 2

Little Spidey + his other armored friend.     PUZZLE: One of these does not belong here. Nightcrawler auditions for the next remake of the Jazz Singer.  The Rogue Sisters.Shop for comics + collectibles ‘till you drop.  National Guard was busy - so Stargate Security offers help.Little Princess Butterfly gets accents.           The Vader Gang works the perimeter security.Optimus, you cover the side exits.    Mark Waid graciously signing a stack of books.


Captain old school America.                              What should we call our new team – the Cobra Joe Titans?Dazzler sings accapella.                                      The crowds never thinned out until late afternoon.Little Spidey + Big Transformer.                      Can you bring me a bottle of water, please?

BATMAN: I do love that official team logo

BALTIMORE, MARYLAND AUGUST 21, 2011:Jason Baker of Pittsburgh made the drive to Maryland to attend the BALTIMORE COMIC CON this weekend.  Was it worth the ride, Jason?  I think you’d say yes.  It was another great day of activities at the COMIC CON.  I spotted Jason wearing this cool team tee-shirt at one of the afternoon presentations and he was nice enough to allow me to take this photo.Jason is wearing a memento of his time spent as an extra on the set of the new BATMAN movie, part of which was filmed in Pittsburgh.  Heinz Field, home of the Pittsburgh Steelers, temporarily became the home of the Gotham Rogues football team for filming of an action sequence in which Jason was a crowd member.   The classic Pittsburgh buildings and tenements substituted for the architecture of Gotham City.  I can’t wait to see this film.


There was an abundance of interesting panels/presentation, artist exhibits,and creator meet-and-greets in addition to an enormous vendor space crammed with deals on books, movies, clothing and toys.  In spite of the large space it filled up with patrons quickly, in what may be a record-breaking attendance at BALTIMORE COMIC CON today. Plenty of well-designed costumes for the annual competition were showcased, including lots of favorites like Green Arrow, Black Canary and The Red Skull. Indie comics creators Jamar Nicholas, John Gallagher and Rich Faber celebrate the success of their Kickstart campaign to obtain funding for a three-pack of all-ages graphic novels featuring their signature characters for young readers.  They also spear-headed a large boxed-in rectangular area of the convention dedicated to works for kids and art and coloring activities as well.  A large number of equally- minded young adult comics creators partnered with the three, who also host the popular Comic Shop D…