Showing posts from October, 2013

A Really Good Bad Guy

Writer: Jeff Parker
Artist: Kyle Hotz
Marvel Comics | TPB | $19.99 Review by From the Booth‘s own Ken There’s a reason that Spider-Man has been fighting Doctor Octopus for 50 years. It’s hard to add a new enemy to the rogues’ gallery when there are so many classics. It’s rare that a new enemy comes back after one arc, let alone resonates with fans enough to get his own book. Originating in the MAXuniverse, the Hood crossed over into theMarvel 616 universe in time to become the new Kingpin of crime during the Dark Reign event. The Hood appears to his underlings as an almost omnipotent force. Using his hood (really a cloak), he can turn invisible; cast devastating spells and even teleport people out of prison. In Dark Reign, he manages to bring together almost all the super villains of New York into one organization, something thought impossible after it had failed so many times before. However to his girlfriend and baby, he is a clumsy low level thief who never manage…

Want A Little Zombie With Your Halloween?

From the official press release . . . . .


At Captain Blue Hen Comics

In Newark, Delaware
You like zombies and you like comics--you will love Zombie Night at Captain Blue Hen Comics!
Zombie Night is Wednesday, October 30 at Captain Blue Hen Comics in Newark, Delaware.
Visit and get sketches by zombie comic artists:
· Living Corpse comic creators, Buz Hasson and Ken Haeser
· Fanboys Vs. Zombies comic artist, Jerry Gaylord
· Until We Sleep comic creator, Bob Garr
· Also appearing: Adveture Time comic artist, Penelope Gaylord
Come in zombie costume to enter the contest.
Get your face painted zombie-style.

WHERE: At Captain Blue Hen - Market East Plaza, 280 E. Main Street in Newark, Delaware
WHEN: Wednesday, October 30 from 5pm to 8pm
WHAT: Artist signings, costume contest, face painting mini art classes, door prizes, and fun!
WHO: You are all invited!
HOW: Free admission

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Fiction Review: Gaiman's latest is a memory book (and very memorable)

A novel by Neil Gaiman
William Morrow, 178 pages
Hardcover, $25.99

          Can you recall the day you learned that Santa Claus was not real?  (Or the Easter Bunny, Great Pumpkin, Tooth Fairy, etc.?)  You probably heard that via an older brother or sister, a favorite cousin, a respected friend (probably a few years older than you), or even your parents.  Because you looked up to the person that gave you the sad but true news, you made a conscious decision to change your beliefs.  You wanted to be more like that person because you respected and admired them, and so you changed your mindset.  You moved away from your childhood reality and took a step closer to adult responsibility, just one of many formative steps in your life until you came to the place where you are today. Every one of those steps was your decision, and each time the cost was the abandonment of some innocent and carefree childhood perceptions…

Activities for the upcoming Halloween weekend

Those of us who live in the Southeastern PA / Northeast MD / Delaware triangle (central base to BC Refugees) have plenty of comics-related Halloween options this coming weekend. Things kick off with Comic Fest (brainchild of the Free Comic Book Day organizers), a Halloween-themed mini version of FCBD.  CAPTAIN BLUE HEN COMICS at 280 East Main Street in Newark, Delaware  (302-737-3434) will have free Comic Fest comics (1 per visitor) in the store on Saturday, October 26.  The store will be closed on Sunday, October 27, due to a Halloween parade that travels down Main Street.  Since access to the store is blocked  (street is closed that day) the CAPTAIN BLUE HEN team will be found at First State Comic Con where they will judge the costume contest.  They will also have a booth at the Con with Comic Fest giveaway comics and other specials.   CAPTAIN BLUE HEN also has copies of the Comic Fest mini-comics for sale for neighbors who would prefer to give out comics rather than candy to “the l…

NYCC announcement: Original Q & W creators reunite for series

from the official press release . . . . . . . . .Valiant is proud to announce that Christopher Priest and M.D. Bright, the acclaimed creators of Quantum and Woody, will reunite for Q2: The Return of Quantum and Woody – an all-new, five-issue mini-series bringing the original world's worst superhero team into the 21st century.           Set wholly in the original continuity of Priest and Bright's groundbreaking Acclaim Comics series, the new mini – which represents the return of both creators to monthly comics – will pick up in the modern day, launching an older Quantum and Woody into an all-new adventure set 20 years after the events of their original series.           “Soon as Doc and I started hashing out the plotline, we got into a huge argument. It was just like old times. Happy to be back on the goat,” said Priest.           "It's enormously exciting to have Priest and Doc return to the iconic characters they made famous," said Valiant Executive Editor Warre…

New Contributor at BC Refugees: meet MICHAEL CLARKE

For a long time, we have been reading the book reviews of Michael Clarke, as his interests lie across several genres, including weird fiction, horror, dark fantasy, sword and sorcery, science fiction, mystery, crime, detective, and pulp adventure.  These are genres that we here at BC Refugees also have an appreciation for.  We are glad to announce that Michael Clarke has joined the list of new contributors to BC Refugees, and will be posting many of his reviews on our blog site.  Here’s a little bit about Michael in his own words:           “To go back to the beginning, this all started in my pre-school years when parents and other relatives would often read aloud to me - - everything from Golden storybooks to comic books.  I learned to read from comic books, and soon progressed to reading Hardy Boys and Tarzan novels.  When I discovered some library collections during my middle-school years, I devoured everything from classic science-fiction to classic classics (Ivanhoe, et…

Book Review: THE DEVIL'S COATTAILS weird fiction anthology

THE DEVIL’S COATTAILS: More Dispatches from the Dark Frontier . . .
Jason V Brock & William F. Nolan, editors
Cycatrix Press 2011 291 pages
52 Deluxe Hardcovers, Signed & Lettered $194.95
500 Trade Hardcovers $49.95
THE DEVIL’S COATTAILS presents a challenge to all reviewers of weird fiction.It refuses to be pinned down, to be easily classified and tagged through a short description of its contents.What it does deliver with each and every entry is high quality and great story-telling.While THE DEVIL’SCOATTAILS is not easily summarized, its impressive contents command a carefully detailed review.A critical analysis could accurately be justified by claiming “The Devil Made Me Do It!”
THE DEVIL’S COATTAILS contains 21 original works, all previously unpublished and is embellished with weird art and illustrations of equally high quality throughout.It is a follow-up anthology to THEBLEEDING EDGE collection, also assembled by the same team of editors (Jason V Brock & Wil…

Best descriptive 2013 title: Vampire Vixens of the Wehrmacht

VAMPIRE VIXENS OF THE WEHRMACHT “If You Want Blood” one-shot (Bump and Grind Comics, August 2013, second printing with foreword by film maker Paul Campion) Writers: The Emperor + Alex Ronald.  Artist: Alex Ronald.  Letterer: Jim Campbell. Original Concept: Alex Ronald.  (Parental Advisory, Adult Content)  Limited print run, but digital copies are available from          If you can’t figure out what this comic is about from that title, then I’m guessing you’ve been living for decades in a cave without a DVD player and no access to cable television.  VAMPIRE VIXENS OF THE WEHRMACHT is a fast-paced horror comic driven by action, rooted in World War II history, and dripping with blood, gore and tantalizing sexual imagery.  What makes it work is a light-hearted approach to the subject matter, all in fun but never silly or stupid.  You may find yourself laughing at several of the scenarios or chuckling at the devilish dialogue.           VAMPIRE VIXENS OF TH…

New contributor to BC Refugees: meet JIM

We welcome our new reviewer, Jim Dietrich, to the BC Refugees blog.   Jim is also an avid comics enthusiast, and serves as DC counterpoint to Ken’s Marvel inclinations.   Jim is a critical but objective analyst, whose eye for detail and underlying themes is always something to look forward to in his reviews.   With our other new reviewer (Ken) and also Kita Roberts  , Jim can be heard regularly on From The Booth, the official podcast of Captain Blue Hen Comics in Newark, Delaware.’ll let Jim tell you more in his own words:           “Jim is an electrical engineer working in the telecomm industry, but that's just his day job.  When he's not typing this paragraph, he's a frequent comics reader (has been since the 80's), and co-host of the From The Booth podcast along with new BC Refugees contributor Ken.  Of course, he is also a husband and proud father 24/7.          "I'm always on the lookout for new pu…

New contributor to BC Refugees: meet KEN

We welcome our new reviewer, Ken (let that last name be a mystery for now), as a regular contributor to the BC Refugees blog.  Ken, or Ken of From The Booth as he likes to include in his byline, is an avid comics enthusiast, partial to Marvel but very open to all publishers, likes to cosplay (just for fun, no competitions)  in his Wolverine outfit plus others, and has become a regular attendee at comics conventions where he and his podcast partner manage to obtain several choice interviews with creators.  He can be heard regularly on From The Booth, the official podcast of Captain Blue Hen Comics in Newark, Delaware. welcome Ken to our website.          “I started reading comics (X-Men and Batman) when I was seven, and have been reading them on and off ever since.  Over a little more than two decades of reading, I’ve amassed a collection of over 8,000 comic books (not including trades or hardcovers). “          “I mostl…

Jim's Movie Reviews: Rush

Rush is the latest film from director Ron Howard and screenwriter Peter Morgan (Frost/Nixon, The Queen).  It tells the (true) story of the intense rivalry between Niki Lauda (Daniel Bruhl) and James Hunt (Chris Hemsworth), two Formula 1 drivers with extreme personalities whose on- and off-track battles were the stuff of sports legend in the 1970's. In a sport where a significant percentage of drivers is killed, on average, every season, the two figures rise to dominate the track, each fueling the other's desire to win, regardless of risk and personal cost.

The Good:  The personalities on display here are extreme, almost to the point of caricature, but neither the script nor the direction can be faulted for it.  To put it simply, the film does a good job of conveying the truth:  To take up this sport required a certain fearlessness not present in your average person.  To win, one must have been more than a little insane.  The dialogue conveys this, including some word-for-word q…

Getting familiar with the Stranger

THE PHANTOM STRANGER  # 1 - 8                                                                                                               &nbspTRINITY OF SIN: THE PHANTOM STRANGER  #9 -10                                                                                 (DC, December 2012 – September 2013)           It was the fabulous art of Brent Anderson that first captured my attention, in a style highly evocative of DC’s classic HOUSE OF MYSTERY back in the Wrightson era.  Also, not being well versed on the character of The Phantom Stranger it seemed a good time to check out the New 52 version.            Dan Didio does a workmanlike job on the series.  The opening story arc is a good one, although Didio’s style reads just a bit too much old-school.  It seems that The Phantom Stranger has assumed the persona of a normal family man and keeps his off-hour activities secret from all.  The first story arc lasts three issues and is a nice introduction to the Stranger’s wife and kid…
Valiant Hits the Bull’s-eye with Bloodshot
Written by Ken of From The Booth
TPB:  Bloodshot Vol 1Setting the World on Fire (2012) Writer:Duane Swiercynski Artist: Manuel Garcia, Arturo Lozzi Price: $9.99
Ever since Valiant Comics got resurrected from a decade in obscurity, I have loved their new stuff and have gone in search of their old stuff.  My ’92 XO Manowarreview details Valiant’s long and complicated history but in short, all of their old titles are back with a fresh coat of paint. 
Duane Swiercynski is best known for his crime novels but has also worked in the comic industry since 2007.  His credits include Cable, single issues of Moon Knight and Punisher and many X-titles.  Both Garcia and Lozzi are both virtual unknowns.
Bloodshot was one of the most popular of Valiant’s characters back in the ‘90s and has been reimagined in his self titled book. Bloodshot is best described as Punisher with a little bit of Hulk mixed in. A member of the US Special Forces, Bloodshot b…

New Feature At BC Refugees: Genre Fiction Reviews

We are happy to introduce a new feature to the BC Refugees blog beginning soon.  We will post reviews of genre fiction, including crime, mystery, detective, fantasy, horror, science fiction, steampunk, pulp revival and whatever else comes to our attention in the form of popular culture. It's what we're all about!  Reviews will be written by Michael Clarke and others.  Please keep watching this space. 

What’s New with HARBINGER? October update

Editor’s Note: HARBINGER is our favorite Valiant title. We haven’t written much about it here recently, but that will be remedied soon. In the meantime, here is the latest news . . . .from the official press release . . . . . . . . . ..           Valiant is proud to announce that acclaimed artist Clayton Henry (Harbinger Wars, Archer & Armstrong) has signed on as the publisher's next exclusive artist for the launch of "Resistance" – a brand new story arc beginning this January in Harbinger #20.          Henry joins artists Doug Braithwaite (Unity), Trevor Hairsine (Eternal Warrior), and Cary Nord (X-O Manowar), as well as New York Times best-selling writer Joshua Dysart (Harbinger, Bloodshot and H.A.R.D. Corps) and acclaimed colorist Brian Reber (Unity), as the latest addition to Valiant's roster of exclusive talent.           As revealed today in an exclusive interview at Comic Vine, the be…