Friday, September 16, 2005

Best Bad Guys

So the other day my students wrote about what they would be if they were superheroes. They were asked to describe their enemies. Young L had the best: Bat Boy, Mummy Mama, and Vibrating Vampire. That last one is sheer terrifying.

They're drawing now while I introduce them to the magic of "The Final Countdown" by Europe.

They love it.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

It has been many a long day since last I bloggeded.

I know the Bloguverse has missed me mightily.

I just know it!

But I have been a busy, busy lad. Starting a new store is a time-consuoming venture. It is emotionally draining. It is physically tiring. The opening party alone, I am only just now recovering from... Many a Brooklyn Lager was drunken, verily.

But now I am back, and possibly with some snarky opinions? It's highly likely!

A few observations...

1. There's been a lot of talk about what's right and wrong with comics. Everyday I sell quality books to a wide audience that has never before set foot in a comic shop. I'm here to tell you, Everything is Right with comics! If you love the medium, and build as nice a store as you can, and try to get the right books in the right hands, comics still seem a vibrant, awesome industry/artform.

2. All I need to see in a mainstream book is Captain Marvel flying through the head of a Deco Giant Robot, and Superman fighting monsters. How many kids have I sold that book to? How much did I love it? The answers is "lots and lots" to both questions. The less I see of Superman having meaningful chats with his wife, the better. I know this is a broken record commentary here at LTUWR, but for fuck's sake! How is it that so many people get Superman so very, very wrong?

Well, this one is right, motherfuckers. And the art is lovely like a corn-fed midwestern girl ice-skating in a short skirt.

3. GASOLINE ALLEY reprints! If you have not read them, I feel endless sorrow for ye.

4. Apparently there are big things brewing at Marvel and DC, aside from Seven Soldiers and All-Star Superman. I hear these rumors, but do not believe them. Anything else is twaddle.

Is that a word? It looks stupid, but it feels right...

5. At my beautiful store, we are selling t-shirts with our logo on them And also rocketships. They are a thing of magnificence. Anyone who has seen thm can test-ify that our shirts are ridiculously cool. Also, we have panties.

Panties, with rocketships on the ass.

Oh yes.

Who says comics aren't sexy?


Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Return to Form

So we haven't been very critical lately. It's more fun, usually, to talk about things you enjoy than things that annoy. But I was just hopping around this comic internet thingee and I found some preview pages for that Infinite Crisis book. So I thought I'd share the links, from Newsarama, and discuss them a bit. OK, get ready HEREWEGO

First we get this splash page. The things that are awesome about it are: Nothing. The things that are unawesome about it are: Wonder Woman's stupid cape; the boys-no-girls club; the terrible "blockbuster trailer" dialogue, it's like written to be cliched and easily translated for the foreign market ("People are scared." "They should be. The world is going to HELL." "Don't you get it? They're scared . . .OF YOU!!!!") Jesus, that's awful; looking up Superman's nose for no reason other than DRAMATIC ANGLE IS NEEDED!!!!

Let's move along. We get introduced to the Freedom Fighters, obscure golden age characters brought together by Roy "One Day Geoff Johns Will Rip Off Everything I Did (and it will be no more interesting the second time)" Thomas and updated by Geoff "Really, Stars and STRIPE was Pretty Good" Johns. The things that are awesome about this page: the Freedom Fighters are there (well, Phantom Lady, Human Bomb, and Uncle Sam); that last sound effect. The things that are unawesome on this page: taking the Freedom Fighters so goddam seriously; the stupid over-written captions ("He claims a LOT of things . . .by this I mean he may not be truthful about it OR IS HE?!?!?"); Exposi-logue (dialogue that no one would actually say, but used in bad writing to get "important" "information" across); the Ray's costume; the Condor guy; and the computer background light effects.

Oooh, more bad light effects! Awesome things: nada. Unawesome things: seriously, this dialogue, what the fuck? "Light's my THING"? That would get laughed off the screen in a shitty action movie! Gratuitous flirting with the girl with boobs. Bad flirting, I should say. Then a STERRRRN WARNING about how FUCKING SERIOUS all of this is. And then some shitty character no one (except a few nerds) gives a fuck about gets blasted and the girl (of course) screams hysterically. Listen, if I'm a super hero and I just got killed, your ass better not scream my stupid super name. Fucking scream "JOEEEEEE! NOOOOOOOO! NOT JOEEEE!!!!!" because otherwise you make us both seem like idiots.

AND NOW THE VILLAINS POSE! Awesome things: in theory, Black Adam, Bizarro, and Psycho Pirate are pretty awesome, complicated characters. In execution: nothing. Unawesome things: Dr. Light (yuck); Deathstroke (zzzzzz); DC Magneto (retard); vibratey new Reverse Flash Who Isn't Called Reverse Flash, Right?; this goddam whole splash cliche; taking Bizarro seriously; Liefeld backgrounds.

This is bad comics. This is really, really bad comics. Stiff, over-rendered art and laughable, over-written dialogue pasted onto the same old bullshit. And there are people that like this. People will shit their pants over this. They are FIWOTTs and aren't truly human beings. They are to be treated like rabid dogs; no, more like lepers. They will be quarantined in their shitty message boards wondering how this all affects "continuity." Later, when Bhudda comes to rescue all the good people, they'll be busy shoving mini-series into their anuses. All will be well.

Girls and Comics

First off, yesterday I added Gumpop to the Almost As Right As We blog list. It's a fun blog about comics and indie rock run by Sophie, who seems to be the girl I tried to turn every girl I knew into when I was younger. Good stuff, good links, and I love how she described us:

And speaking of snark, the dudes over at Listen to Us, We're Right are pretty damn full of themselves. But when you get past the first impressions, they do seem rather sweet. Unless they're talking about things they dislike. Then it gets nasty.

So check it out and enjoy.

Secondly, I recently got an email from my "little sister" (soon-to-be-sister-in-law) about the recent batch of comics she borrowed from me. Here's the good part:

i liked that other one. the one that's related to
hellboy. what was it about it that i liked? i dunno. its relation to
hellboy. the relationship betw. the fire girl and the general. those
frog-monsters. the ending was awesome. love that icebox. i think hellboy
is like the one comic where everytime you get to a scene where someone's
about to uncover or journey into some dark and horrible place and youre
totally shirking from it and shitting in your pants not to go, the
characters are always just so damn cool and fearless. like it's nothing.
to them its not extraordinary like war. this terrible stuff is what their
lives are made of! deep thoughts by ida

Isn't that really one of the amazing things about Mignola's writing? The casual cool of the outlandish and horrific. The unusual mixture of natural behavior and unnatural activity.

Monday, September 12, 2005


Ladies and gentlemen:


Jesus Lord in Heaven. Beautiful. Utterly beautiful.

If you cannot recognize the sheer mastery of craft that Frank Quitely has achieved, then you are a Fucking Idiot With Objectively Terrible Taste, or a FIWOTT. FIWOTTs are not welcome at this blog. You've probably been offended by something else that we've correctly stated and are gone already, but if you're hanging around for some reason, don't let the door hit your ass on the way out. Listen to Us is an Anti-FIWOTT blog. We actively discriminate against FIWOTTs. I am full of prejudice directed at FIWOTTs. And the Irish. And the Italians. But those are different stories. I'd rather have a Guiness with Spaghetti than hang out with a FIWOTT.

Hmmm. Perhaps a FIWOTT Registration Act is in order. Let's wipe the internet of this plague of moronicity and dimwittedry. DOWN WITH FIWOTTS! DOWN WITH FIWOTTS!

Back on more pleasant matters, that piece up there is still absolutely amazing.

And I got to tell this year's first installment of the "Captain Marvel story" to my new class. They are pumped to hear more adventures of the seven year old orphan who can turn into the world's mightiest mortal. It's not hard to make this stuff fun for kids.

Quick pre-morning notes

New Make-Believe War up.

Wintermen has found a new fan in my soon-to-be-sister-in-law. Even the fiancee couldn't help but read through it.

Not comic, but geek-related: I actually put on the TV last night to watch some of Fox's Sunday shows, remembering that used to be really funny. The Simpsons wasn't awful, but it wasn't funny, either. That live action show after it was fucking terrible. And Family Guy, as always, had maybe one funny joke and a LOT of trying to hard. Well, that's another night I don't have to bother with TV.