Tagged: Unkiedev

THE OPPOSITE OF OPPOSITE

Time for some incredible comics! I thought last week had some good books, but it is like the amazing titles from last week were bombarded by Gamma Radiation and then given an atomic wedgie! These are some hulked out, sensational She-Titles, here!

DC is bringing it’s a-Game with #17’s for Action Comics (Grant Morrison’s last issue, I understand), Detective Comics, Green Arrow and Green Lantern. These #17 on Green Arrow and Green Lantern are GREAT jumping on points. Read these books yourself to find out how easy it is being green.   I once ate some pretty smelly asparagus, and I can tell you, it’s not that easy peeing green, either.  

NUMBER ONE

As if that wasn’t enough, they’re also launching a new title with Justice League of America #1. This is a strange team, including Catwoman and Hawkman. That’s going to end real well. They should have a team of all natural enemy animal capes, Like Catwoman, Mighty Mouse, Underdog, The Flying Mongoose and COBRA Commander. It could only last as a one-shot, but BOY, what a one-shot!

AS IF THAT WASN’T ENOUGH, DC is also publishing a collection of Alan Davis’ work on Legends of the Dark Knight! Alan Davis is one of the greats with a bold drawing style reminiscent of the silver age but unique to himself. For my money, NO ONE alive today draws better Superheroes.  Don’t get me wrong, others may have more style, but Davis tells such well paced, clean stories with great poses and just the right amount of retro.   Few modern artists can draw the underwear on the outside and not make it look outlandish.

GENDER BLENDER

There are probably twelve more DC books I could plug this week, but let’s give the other kids some space, shall we? Adventure Time with Fiona and Cake #2 is out this week, as well as a new book from Humberto Ramos called Fairy Quest #1, Goon #44 and Hellboy in Hell #3.   These last two books are from Dark Horse who, incidentally, publish the very splendid and worthwhile Dr. Gordbort Presents VICTORY,  Scientific Adventure Violence for Young Men and Literate Women. Dr. Gordbort’s is a nifty little tome of well illustrated, Steam-Punk infused colonial  genocide, wherein Stiff-upper-lipped British boys fly to Venus to show those pasty green savage “What-For!” It is the brainchild of WETA illustrator Greg Broadmore, the lead concept designer on District 9, and it is more fun than you could shake a hookah at!

BAD HOBBITS

I recently caught the new Hobbit film, and I loved it. Well, what I could see of it. As you may know, I’ve had some problems with my cybernetic eyes. I didn’t feel like paying for the 3D ticket, so I only saw it in 2D. Unfortunately, the two dimensions I managed to catch it in were Length and Depth, so it always looked like a flat, glowing line which swords, arrows and magic would occasionally pop out of.   I’m going to pick up this month’s issue of Alter Ego (#115) which is going to be a special issue focusing on the history of 3D comics. Maybe that will tell me what I did wrong.

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THE REVOLVING DOOR OF DEATH

The debut issue of Superior Spider-Man makes it clear that Peter Parker Spider-Man is still swinging around in the mind of his body’s usurper, Dr. Otto Octavious. While we have no idea what crazy comics writer Dan Slott will do next, it is safe to say we shall see Peter Parker back in the driver seat of his own body sooner than later.

Meanwhile, over in the pages of Batman, the Joker has gathered the entire Bat-Family together for an awkward dinner party. Ole’ Strap-face is trying to make the point to Bruce that his emotional dependence to his crime-fighting partners is always going to slow him down.

A point he will surely try to make through death, namely the eponymous Death of the Family. Many will ask “Who will die?” A more jaded person might ask “Who will care?”
We can’t grumble about the short-term deaths of our comic book brothers and sisters. The crazy, never-say-die ups and downs of these fictional people’s lives are half the fun, am I right? I’m really looking forward to Mars Attacks the Transformers this week, and I wouldn’t give one Energon cube’s worth of dang if the Martians won!  In fact, I’m ROOTING for the Martians…they didn’t do so well agains Popeye, the Ghostbusters or Kiss, and I do like me an underdog.
KICK THE BUCKET

DC hits the shelves running, with Justice League #16, Batwoman #16 and Green Lantern #16. Also up is the conclusion to the interesting experiment that was Before Watchmen, namely The Minutemen #6 of 6. Like many stories, some of the books were good, some were less than stellar. The question is, “Was this worth alienating fans and creators over?”
So what is the answer?
The Answer is a brand new book from Dark Horse hitting the shelves this week! Now as to whether squeezing the last blood out of Watchmen was worth it, that all depends on who you are. If you are Warner Brothers, absolutely. You now have a wealth of material you can mine when you want to create a prequel Watchmen movie.
Dark Horse will also be publishing two great books which, financially, will fit my wallet well.  Buffyverse sampler #1 is an incredible bargain; Four issues of the ongoing Buffy spin-off titles under one cover for the low price of $4.99! Take all that money you just saved getting four comics for the price of one and get ready to spend it. Dark Horse is publishing Final Fantasy artist Yoshitaka Amano’s brand new illustrated novel called Deva Zan, and while it is beautiful it sure ain’t cheap.
And then there’s some Marvel books out. You don’t really care about those guys, do you?
JUST KIDDING

Deadpool #4 has Deadpool vs Zombie Lincoln (Ironic hipster “Yawn”) and FF#3 has Mike Allred art! Uncanny X-Force #1 is one of my most anticipated books of 2013, and the wait is over! On the flip side, the relaunch of Young Avengers could be awesome, but could be a terrible cash-grab. No expectations, peoples, lets dive on in!

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U.D.’s Review-Dees, Episode 2

FLEX MENTALLO: Man of Muscle Mystery, Grant Morrison (W), Frank Quitely (A), DC

Like the best puzzles, Flex Mentallo can be viewed at many angles. Let’s start on the surface and dive deep.

Flex Mentallo is the bizarre debut of Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely, the creative team who will go on to create the sensational, yet haunting, We3, All Star Superman, Earth 2 and many other fine titles. It features a leopard bikini-briefs wearing muscleman, who is essentially Charles Atlas, made mystic as he attempts to find his super-hero buddies in order to stop the end of the world.

Layered on top of this adventure is the suicide hotline confessions of a rock star and comic book writer processing his need for comics, rooted in his unhappy childhood, and increasingly questioning the place for such happy-go-lucky faire in today’s reality.

This comic book creator IS the creator of Flex, our erstwhile protagonist, and in his pill-induced death-throes he begs for the superheroes of his youth to save him from his present.

Is Flex’s quest to save the world really about rescuing his creator from himself? Does the entire story take place in the dying mind of a scared twenty-something?

Yes, and no. You’d need a PHD to fully grasp everything going on here.

See, the graphic novel Flex Mentallo is also Grant Morrison’s post-Watchmen dissertation on the state of the comic book industry, as well as a treatise on the origins of ideas and the nature of multiple realities.

Within the context of Flex Mentallo, the graphic novel is a self-contained reality trying to bleed into our universe in order to save itself from destruction. The fictional characters within plead that they are alive, that they want to live, and they intend to bring about a regenesis for themselves by introducing their world into your head as fiction to awaken when you, the reader, become shaman enough to give them physical life in your own reality. Continue reading

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U.D.’s Review-Dees

Before Watchmen Minutemen #1, Darwyn Cooke (W/A), DC

When a crime is committed, the courts attempt to find a jury comprised of impartial citizens with no knowledge of the people and the events involved to guaranteed a fair, unbiased trial. To review Before Watchmen Minutemen #1 with full impartiality, one would be required to find someone who hasn’t read a comic book in roughly 30 years.

The title alone illustrates why. As an unasked and controversial prequel to Watchmen, the 1987 graphic novel which redefined comic books, Before Watchmen cannot escape the magnitude of its source material.

Since its debut, Watchmen has never been matched for complexity, nuance, nor story; though not for lack of trying. It is hard to repeat true innovation.

No comparison between Before Watchmen and Watchmen could be made. That would be like swatting a fly with a nuke.

Darwyn Cooke, the talented writer/artist of Before Watchmen Minutemen, rose to prominence thanks to New Frontier, a spiffy DC graphic novel which mined the fifties and forties for retro super hero fun. Darwyn has since become to “Go-to” guy for a modern take on past flavors, and has become a fan favorite with his brisk, “Simple made complex” approach to storytelling. He seems a natural fit for a look back on Watchmen’s characters.

But again, we bring to our review of this title our love and understanding of Darwyn’s past body of work. Is it fair to compare Before Watchmen to New Frontier?

Fair or not, it doesn’t relect well. Next to Darwyn’s other titles, Before Watchmen fills you with the disappointment of a good creator treading thin water, repeating himself with every shallow stroke.

DC recently made vast headlines by rebooting their entire universe and starting over all titles with shiny new #1s. How does Before Watchmen Minutemen #1 contrast with DC’s other #1s? Does it inspire the reader to pick up another issue? Are we left with a desire to follow the story?

What is the story? Continue reading

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Old Weekly Planet Articles

The Weekly Planet is a newsletter I started writing for the FPNYC shop some years ago.  It’s changed and mutated in a number of ways since its inception, but I no longer contribute to it weekly (I just don’t reserve the time for it these days… bizzy bizzy bizzy), though Unkiedev still lends his talents to it.

However, we will be uploading a whole bunch of old Weekly Planet articles to this blog over the next few weeks.  As of right now there are a handful of old articles up dating as far back as October of 2006, in one of which I called Casanova by Matt Fraction, Gabriel Ba, and Fabio Moon so good it’d help old ladies with their groceries if it could.

So if you’re in a mood to turn back The Way-Back Machine about 7-8 years you can view all old WP articles under Weekly Planet Archive.

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Life is Like a Hurricane

With the New York Comic Con behind us, what do we have to fill the thermos of our fickle attention spans? How about some choice graphic novels from this weeks new comics!

DUCK TALES: RIGHTFUL OWNERS, Warren Spector (W),  BOOM! Studios.

Comics is too big a field to make statements like “Comics fans fall into two categories.” Comics fans fall into fifty-quadra-billion categories…almost as many categories as Uncle Scrooge has beautiful golden coins in his money bin. Still, we can point out a simple dichotomy that seems scientifically tested: There are those who believe Carl Barks‘ “Uncle Scrooge” comics are some of the high water marks of genius in our beloved medium, and then there are those who say “Carl WHO?!”

Time after time, kids of all ages revisit the classic Uncle Scrooge comics drawn, written, and conceptualized by the legendary Carl Barks. Even works that stand the test of time like Uncle Scrooge, however, started as periodicals. One unavoidable tag on the toe of classic Scrooge McDuck stories is his imperialistic, western based perspective that the treasures of any other culture, civilization or people was the spoils of whichever civilized duck was clever enough to find it.

Duck Tales: Rightful Owners will be an enlightened, modern look back at Scrooge’s treasure hunting days in which he returns plundered goodies to their native homes. The pedigree of the writers and artists (Warren Spector is the guy behind Wii’s Epic Mickey and artist Leonel Castellani is a big wig over at Marvel’s Super Hero Squad) indicates that this is a labor of love and not just a cheap cash grab.

High concept and high talent can fail pretty hard at filling big shoes…but I’m buying in. Who has three thumbs and loves Scrooge McDuck? THIS guy! Continue reading

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Dispatch from an Alternate Universe

By Unkiedev

There is not a single problem that can befall man nor beast that cannot be resolved through the awesome powers of this week’s new comic books. S’true!

Let’s pretend you are a wasp and you’re way behind building you new hive. Not only does Doom Patrol #20 feature bizarre characters written by the incomparable Keith Giffen, but you could eat it, digest it and regurgitate it out to make a wood pulp perfect for your queen’s new chambers! The same goes for Superboy #5, which features a race to the finish between Superboy Connor Kent and Kid Flash! Wowee!

“Unkiedev,” you might now declare, “You are a glue-sniffing fool. I am neither NOT a wasp. This solution will not suit, sir! I am, however, living in an alternative universe which has been taken over by Zombie hoards and trying to date a half mutated hippopotamus.” Continue reading

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Times They Are A Changin’

The land of comic books is a fertile ground of rich entertainment just waiting to be mined! Recently it has been announced that the Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming title, Powers, will finally be brought to the small screen via FX. THIS is awesome!

POWERS, Brian Bendis (W), Michael Oeming (A), Publishers Various

Powers is a quintessential “Capes through the looking glass” title, a book where the tropes of superheroism are the set dressings to stories about average lives touched and shaped by the superhuman world.  The main protagonists are detectives Deena Pilgrim and Christian Walker, cops who work the super-hero related homicide desk of a busy city. Continue reading

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Unkiedev’s Amazing Stuff

HEY!  Comic Book day falls on my birthday this year!  Yup, your ole’ Unkiedev will be turning an undisclosed number somewhere between twenty something and some combination of 30 and a few more.  How to celebrate?  Why, A nice cup of cocoa, a warm badger to serve as my footstool and I’m all set to dig into this week’s sensational comic book offerings. AH!  Badger feet.

Marvel has a few goodies up their sleeve.  Did I say goodies?  I mean baddies! Astonishing X-Men #36 has Wolvie throw down with those big-footed Jack Kirby monsters from Monster Island!  Count me in!  Then we have a little something called Kick-Ass 2 #2, ‘nuff said. Amazing Spider-Man #655 has more movin’ and shakin’ than a bowl of jelly on acid!  Then in Avengers #10 the Hood has the Infinity Gauntlet.  This is bad…so bad, it’s good!

Continue reading

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Where’s the Love?

Recently it has been revealed that Marvel intends to kill off MORE important characters in order to increase sales…I mean tell good stories! With Valentine’s Day safely behind Us where it can no longer do

any harm I think it might be appropriate to ask Marvel “Where’s the love?”

A few years back The House of Ideas had a handful of pretty decent Romance comics to round out the otherwise cape and cowl crowd of books they usually publish. If death sells better than love then I can only move aside…however, let’s look at a few great romances from comic’s glorious past that can really illustrate what modern readers could expect from new love themed comics:

Continue reading

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New Comics Worth the Money

Somebody killed all the good, fun, bright and new ideas in comic books. Is there anyone to save us?

Holy Crap! A New Hellboy book?!

Richard Corben, 70’s Heavy Metal Magazine favorite and erstwhile Hellboy artist is back in the artistic saddle with big daddy Mike Mignola whipping him onward via the written word on a brand new Hellboy double feature appropriately called Hellboy Double Feature of Evil! A truly sensational comic book ready to explode your mind! As of right now we are all at the bottom of a hill of ignorance, and this ten-ton comic book is about to avalanche down on our heads with deadly enlightenment of its weighty worth.

THIS to me is what makes comic books great! Amazing talents taking the time to get it right, crafting stories of worth and skill. It is fine by me that there will be four good Hellboy books this year, as they were all f’ing good! Continue reading

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Four Years of The Weekly Planet

The Weekly Planet, FPNYC’s newsletter for in-store customers, celebrated its four year anniversary last week.  Since that first sweltering summer night we hand-copied and stapled a coupla hundred 8×11 sheets of copy paper on which I wrote an impassioned letter to members of our comic book subscription program back in 2006, to that sweltering summer night in 2010 when we brought a file over to our local printer for them to put together, the WP’s been through the rigors of geek retail without missing a week and lived to tell the tale.

That being said I’d like to quickly thank all past and current contributors (especially Devin T. Quin, Mat Kerwin, Matt Desiderio, and Mark Denardo), the various FP staffers who helped lay out issue after issue (esp. Lindsay Johnson and Alice Meichi Li) and all guest contributors (esp. Shannon Wheeler and Julia Wertz).

Though I was remiss in celebrating this anniversary upon issue #208’s publication I’ll be making amends in the coming weeks by posting some of the WP’s best articles and tidbits to Forbidden Planet NYC’s other blog (which, I encourage you to check out regardless).

Here’s to many more years of The Weekly Planet.

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New Comics From Smaller Publishers

by Unkiedev

THE SMALL 5

It used to be easy: the “Big Two” in comic books referred to the two biggest guns in the world of super hero publishing, Marvel and DC. Then the Nineties happened and everybody had to amend the playing field to make room for “The Big Three,” meaning Marvel, DC and the new upstart Image. My favorite publisher is unabashedly Dark Horse, and they often have a strong presence in the marketplace, as well.

Everybody who knows comic books knows these companies. There are a handful of smaller publishers who continue to share a good portion of the spoils while still remaining obscure or seemingly outdated. Let’s take a look at a few of these fellows in “The Small Five.”

ARCHIE

You know who they are, but what you don’t know is they still move titles. This week they have Betty and Veronica Double Digest #182, as well as Sonic the Hedgehog #214 and Veronica #201. Look out, Deadpool, Veronica could give you a run for the money as far as titles per week goes!

See, parents will always buy Archie comics for their kids, especially daughters. These titles are selling because they fill a niche no one else wants to touch: dependable all ages, all gendered comics, a.k.a. cheap family entertainment.

Archie and friends are doing fine! Continue reading

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Hogwash: No New Comic Books

By Unkiedev

It was decided by a horde of crazed wood-elves that this final week of 2009 would see virtually NO NEW COMIC BOOKS. This can be a pain in the power-ring when you are a freelance comic book reporter in need of a good story.

At these junctions we are left with few options, one of which is to pull a William Randolph Hearst and MAKE UP some news, such as “ The 2011 release of Spider-Man 4 will reunite Spidey and Mary Jane in print,” or “ Greg Park confirms the Red Hulk is the mutant offspring of Devil Dinosaur and the original Abomination.”

This can be a quick pay-off, story wise, with disastrous consequences down the road. A reporter’s worth is tabulated solely by their credibility, and any writer caught fabricating a story will find their careers cut short. But then again, I write for the Weekly Planet and rarely get paid, so what the heck am I worried about?

Superman to Fight Ali AGAIN,

Yes, Neal Adams has confirmed through his website nealadams.com that DC plans on reprinting his classic oversized Superman vs Muhammad Ali for the eagerly awaiting eyes of an adoring fan base.

What Unkiedev’s Amazing Stuff has discovered is that the book will also feature a NEW oversized comic, written by the All Star Superman Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely re-matching these two pop-culture icons! Continue reading

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