Saturday, October 13, 2007

Linkblogging is bad for your health....

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Time for some weekend fluff, and when I don't feel like actually doing anything, what do I do? Linkblogging!!

  • First and foremost: Go Rockies! There is a chance they will never lose another baseball game. OK, not really, but it gets to feeling that way after a while.
  • Bunch of stuff at Complete schedule of comic-book related movie release dates; Interview with Gavin Hood, director of the upcoming Wolverine movie, where he uses big words like "existential angst" and "emotional complexity"; Peter Cullen (voice of Optimus Prime) tells SHH! that he has been told there would be two more Transformer movies.
  • Over at Weekly Crisis there is a new feature I think you will enjoy. The Comic Book Character Spotlight will delve in the history of characters that are gaining popularity or being put into larger roles. Very informative stuff, with the first one featuring Sodam Yat of the Green Lantern Corps.
  • And last but not least, it has been far too long but the time has once again come. Here at The Comic Rack I have always been good for two things: comics and gratuitous photos of beautiful women vaguely linked (but not always ) to comics. So on that note, here you go, my favorite Megan Fox:
Enoy the linkage. I doubt I'll post anything tomorrow, but I should be back Monday with more comic goodness. We'll get back to some previews with one of my favorite features, Waiting on Wedsnesday. See you then.


Friday, October 12, 2007

Green Arrow and Black Canary #1

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Fair Warning: Spoilers incoming

I had been putting off reading this comic for whatever reason. I picked up GA #75 and have read both the GA Year One series and the Black Canary 4 issue mini, along with all the Wedding crap, and to be honest, it was some of the more enjoyable comics I have read recently. So I am not sure where the reluctance came from. Maybe it was the horrible ending of the Wedding Special with BC stabbing Ollie in the neck as he was trying to kill her. Maybe it was overkill from so many issues of these two being released so quickly, with both mini-series being put out every two weeks instead of every four.

Whatever the reason, it was completely wrong. I just got done reading GA/BC #1 and I am hooked. I even liked Connor Hawke in this issue, despite him being easily my least favorite archer. I always felt he was a poorly placed plot contrivance in response to Kyle Rayner becoming GL, and an attempt to revive/renew the great GL/GA team-ups of the 70's.

The issue, which centers around proving that the dead Ollie is not the real Ollie, shows a darker side of Dinah Lance while she nearly kills some nameless faceless thugs. After that, they get right to the meat of the story and don't stop until the very last page. It's refreshing to have a writer who actually has something to say that fills 22 pages instead of the norm now-a-days which is to spread out an 8 page story into a full issue.

Which brings me to my next heaping of praise for this comic. The creative team is simply awesome. Judd Winick has not always been my favorite, he usually seems like just another comic book writer, but I like I said above, the pacing and the plot were spot on for this story. It helps when you have a good artist behind you, and he definitely does in Cliff Chiang. Chiang's artwork is very smooth and at times feels old fashioned despite being fresh. There aren't a whole lot of unnecessary lines, and he doesn't need to exaggerate the action in the scene, it is just there. If it sounds like I am gushing, it is because I am. I was in awe on the penciling and the coloring on this entire issue, it felt realistic, but cartoony at the same time. Don't know how, it just did.

Back to the story, with appearances by the entire JLA, and more specifically Batman and Hal Jordan helping to figure out the mystery, this issue sets up an all out attack on the Amazons that are holding Ollie hostage. I am not sure how he is there, since men can't set foot on the island, but no doubt the Amazons are in some deep shit. The old saying goes "Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned" and something I was told once upon a time also fits, "Don't fuck with a woman on her wedding day". Or this happens.

Wow. Just wow.


We've seen this before...

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Marvel seems to be worse at it than DC, but no matter who does, the most annoying thing currently being done in comics is the Misleading Cover. Annoying? No that's no the right. Wrong is more like it. Nothing pisses me off more than buying a comic with a kick ass cover on it and then reading through the entire thing only to realize that it never happens.

We went through this before with a couple of World War Hulk covers (Ghost Rider #12 and Heroes for Hire #11) and the latest example is this week's New Avengers #35. Here's the cover and the ad, which I have shown before, that they have been using for the last month or two to hype this particular issue:

And what do we get for the entire issue? A bunch of third rate villains trying to organize and beating the crap out of a third rate Avenger, Tigra. No Wolverine, no symbiotes (until the last page and then it is a crappily drawn mish-mash of heroes and vaguely recognizable symbiotes) and sure as hell no Wolverine/Symbiote killing machine as both the ad and the cover clearly show.

Other Marvel News

So the new Captain America has a new costume, drawn by Alex Ross, and every comic website is reporting it as if they were the first to find out, even though the info has been readily available on for the last couple days now. And to be honest, I have seen nothing new about it other than what Marvel released.

So why am I blogging about it? Glad you asked. I want to know who everyone thinks is going to be the new Captain America? When is Steve Rogers coming back? (We all know he is.) What should happen to Rogers when he does return, and in turn what should happen to the new Cap?

Update: Within minutes of hitting the post button, I found an interview on CBR with Ed Brubaker and Alex Ross, which you can find here. Enjoy!

Update 2: Dummy me, I forgot to actually put up a picture of what the new costume looks like, even though you have all probably seen it already. So here ya go!

Oops, that was the last new Alex Ross design. See if you can tell the difference.

Yeah real original Mr. Ross. Here's a better view of what to realistically expect for the new Cap.


Thursday, October 11, 2007

Welcome Back!

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I just know that all 5 of my readers are going to come flocking back at the news that I have made my triumphant return!

Yeah right. Anyhow, I need to get myself reacquainted with the blog, so I am going to take time once again and show you all around. There isn't much new, but some of the old stuff is still pretty damn cool if you ask me.

The Comic Book Project @ Columbia University

First things first. The Comic Book Project @ Columbia University has been removed from the Comic Charities list. Why? Because fuck Columbia University for supporting terrorism, that's why. I don't preach politics, but I refuse to even attempt to turn one person on to a place as vile as that.

Who Wants to be a Superhero?

Will never be mentioned again. It proves every bad thing I have ever said about Stan Lee and is a disparagement to all things comic book related. Such potential, such a failure.

The big orange thing on the right

It's the universal symbol for RSS. If you don't know what that is and use the interwebs for more than 5 minutes a day, you need to learn. Now. Go do it, we'll all wait here for you.

Back? Okay, click on the big icon and subscribe to my feed, courtesy of Feedburner. It will keep you updated every time I post more magnificent bloviations such as this.

Table of Contents

This is like the coolest little piece of Javascript I came across. Click on it and it shows a link to every single post I have ever made. Just try it once, it really is helpful.

The Good ol' Blog Roll

I said yesterday that there were some link requests festering in my email, and I took care of them today. What I realized is that except for one, they should have all been left there to continue to fester. Quality is obviously not a huge concern for some bloggers.

However, I want to point out the one I did add - Weekly Crisis. I have not been a regular reader, but I have run across his site quite a few times. Well put together site, intelligently written and not full of a bunch of crap like over-sized RSS icons, Tables of Contents and.... ummm never mind. Just go check it out for yourself.

Well that's about it. Have a good idea for an addition to The Comic Rack, let me know in the comments. I have been known to blow up the entire blog to change one or two minor things.


Summer comics "events" and catching up

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So I was trying to think about just what it is that has made my desire to blog about comics become a chore, and I think I finally realized what it was this morning.

I was reading Green Lantern #24 this afternoon and I couldn't quite remember exactly some of the stuff they were referencing in this issue. It doesn't help that comics publishers all but refuse to reintroduce the Editor's info boxes that were a staple of comics for so many years. For example, it would say *See GL #19 - Ed. in a little box buried in the corner of the panel somewhere, and you would know to go back to that issue to get the whole story if you had missed it. This led me to do two things when I was a kid:

  1. Look for back issues in my grandma's basement or at the book store, since I had no concept of a comic shop back then, and
  2. Spend countless hours trying to figure out the who the hell Ed was and why was he the authority on comic book back issues.
I was a troubled child. But anyhow...

What finally struck me was that I have Summereventitis. Bad. I love the Incredible Hulk, I named my son Logan after Wolverine (true story, I'll tell the whole thing someday soon about my sickness in naming children), and I am a huge DC fanboy, but despite all that I just completely lost my edge trying to keep up with all of them. To me it all ended up as World War Endangered Countdown Corps every damn week.

It totally out of hand, and I am not nearly original enough to believe I am the first person to ever notice this. In fact, I have read transcripts of both companies discussing it at comic-cons. It just never affected me until the last couple months.

It just seems like all I talked about every week was the same revolving storylines from the different events. Blah blah blah the Hulk kicked some ass, blah blah blah we still have no clue how to cure mutants, blah blah blah Sinestro wants to destroy the Green Lanterns. I actually took World War Hulk titles off my pull list altogether. What's happened in the last 5-6 weeks? Not much. Again, the Hulk kicked some ass and is using MSG as a gladiator arena. Whoop de frickin do. (Interesting note - "frickin" is somehow not tagged as misspelled.)

So do all of you want to hear the same ol' same ol' week after week? I didn't think so. So for the most part I am going to avoid droning on and on about events until there is actually something to talk about.

Green Lantern #24

And surprisingly I have something to say about GL #24. Follow along in your own copies. What? You haven't been buying this event? For shame. Of the four major events it is the only one that doesn't seem gratuitous. But this month's ish has a glaring error and is predictable as anything you're going to read in the near future. So without further ado.... spoiler alert.

OK I don't have room for all the panels involved in this, so you'll have to trust me on this. Kylellax goes after Hal Jordan's brother in Coast City, and while breaking the sound barrier to get there, Hal's ring reports it is at 0.5% power. After plowing into Kylellax, it reports it is at 0.0% and Hal reverts to his civilian clothing. Parallax notices this and consumes Hal and for some dumb reason is now yellow instead of green like he has been. Still with me?

Here's where it gets a but convoluted. Hal is inside Parallax with Kyle... in uniform. He gives him some crap about sticking together or whatever other cliche they felt like inserting there, and then Guy Gardner says "You see that, John? It's a green light!" And then this happens:

Whaaaaaat? OK we all saw this coming, because Kyle started reappearing in Countdown like 4 weeks ago post-Parallax! Good timing on your stories DC....

But seriously, is this the best that Geoff Johns can do? I personally have enjoyed almost everything he has done recently, but this is weak as hell. If Hal's ring was at 0.0%, then how the hell did he pull this off? And doesn't it kind of diminish what could have been a truly "special" moment for Hal and Kyle, who have never really been the best of friends?

If I am writing this scene, I have Hal's power ring run out, and keep it that way. Then have a "moment" like they had, but end up having Kyle's willpower become strong enough to defeat Parallax. His willpower has never been his strong point considering he is the only GL ever chosen for reasons other than enormous willpower, so it would be fitting and a stepping stone for him to become an even better GL than he is.

Then they would have popped out all gooey, given Guy an uncomfortable man-hug and flown off to kick some yellow alien ass.

I guess that's why I blog and Geoff Johns writes comic books. But whatever, it was still lame.

Endangered Species

Raise your hand if you think Marvel will not eventually find a cure for Scarlet Witch's hex?

You in the back, put your hand down, you're a retard.

There is no suspense here at all. Mutants are Marvel's gravy train, and they aren't going away. And I have found myself sort of offended that they think we are dumb enough to believe that lie and place some kind of importance on an 8 page back story that they are using to sell comics like X-Factor and New X-Men that no one ever buys otherwise. It was a good premise to begin with, but they have just led us along on a wild goose chase courtesy of Hank McCoy, and to be honest, I can't remember a time in all of this that I said to myself "Wow I didn't see that coming..."

So in closing, fuck Endangered Species. I'll download the Archive Edition when it is over and find out what happened then. I am just tired of spending $3 on 8 frickin pages.

I'll get into World War Hulk and Countdown this weekend sometime. See you then.


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Jumping back in

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So the question for me is where do I start... again?

I want to blog, I like blogging, but every time I sit down to post, I just don't have much to say.

If any one has any secrets to keeping up near daily blogging, I would love to hear them. Otherwise, my posts may just suck for awhile until I get back in the swing of things. Hope there are still a few of you out there.

There have been a few people who have requested links that fell on deaf ears because I wasn't checking my email, but I will hopefully get those up in the next few days.


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