Friday, May 30, 2008

This Week's Haul: Too many awesome comics aaaaahhh I'm gonna explode!

A perfect storm of comic books.

It doesn't happen often, but when it does it's always exciting, and makes for a busy day at the ol' comic shop. This week was one of those weeks. Plus, I live in Canada so I actually got my comics on Wednesday!

Before I even begin, let's look at the all-star line-up of writers we had serving up the good stuff this week: Not one, not two, but three books by Grant Morrison, two by Geoff Johns, two by Ed Brubaker, plus books by Joss Whedon, Jeff Parker, Sean McKeever, Will Pfeifer, and Matt Fraction. Truly an awesome week.

Here are my thoughts on some of what I read:

Final Crisis #1

I hear people saying things like "Yeah, I don't know about Final Crisis...I guess I'll just see how the reviews are." To those people I say: guys, seriously. This is a sure thing. It's Grant Morrison and it's J.G. Jones. This is as safe as betting that I will never, ever see the Sex in the City movie.

The first issue was great. Really great. It was exciting, original, insane and laugh-out-loud funny at times.

And the art was beautiful. And most of the tie-ins are going to be written by Geoff Johns! What more do you want?!

Giant Size Astonishing X-Men #1

The most eagerly anticipated book finally hit the shelves this week. This exceeded my high expectations, I don't know about you guys. Just an awesome read. And long! With no ads! I enjoyed having Joss Whedon writing some of the extended Marvel universe characters who show up in this book, including Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four, Dr Strange, and Iron Man.

I also enjoyed John Cassaday drawing them.

I don't care if that facial expression is physically impossible. I LOVE IT!

What if they teamed up for a 3-issue arc on Amazing Spider-Man?! Oh man!

Anyway, this was a very good comic. Worth the ridiculously long wait.

All-Star Superman #11

I can't believe this is almost over. I actually can't stand the thought of a world without new issues of this series. It's heartbreaking. Almost as heartbreaking as this issue was. Man, it was so good.

This series features my very favourite Lex Luthor ever. He's just perfectly written. So arrogant and so brilliant and so funny.

Really, every character is perfect. So as much as I can't wait for the next issue, it's going to be a sad day when it comes.

Batman #677

I don't know how into this event I am as a storyline with tie-ins, but I will reserve judgement. I am really liking the two issues of Batman so far in this story, though. As much as I don't care about Jet Jezebel as a character (her biggest flaw: she's not Catwoman), I did enjoy her sensible opinions about Bruce's probable insanity in this issue.

Seriously, Bruce. She has a point.

I especially loved that she mentioned witnessing the brutal murder of her own father, and how she didn't respond to it by becoming a vigilante in a bat costume.

Overall, this storyline is just really damn interesting, and I can't wait to see what happens next.

Action Comics #865

Geoff Johns sets some things right in the world of Superman in this issue. Most importantly, he cleans up this whole Toyman mess that has been happening for decades. He brings Toyman back to being one guy, with one look. No more crazy interpretations. It's well done. And I appreciate it because, yeesh, that shit was getting confusing.

He also is bringing Cat Grant back to Metropolis! Yay!

This really was an awesome issue. I know it's going to get buried under all the other awesome this week, but you'd do well to pick it up.

Green Lantern #31

Geoff Johns again! I've been enjoying this Secret Origins arc because, as I've said before, I'll never get tired of reading Hal Jordan's origin story. And Johns' sense of humour really makes for a great re-telling.

Plus, y'know, gorgeous art. I can't wait until this is collected into a trade and I can sell it to people who want to be introduced to Green Lantern. Although, New Frontier is pretty much unbeatable for that too. But this brings in Sinestro, and these days that's all that new Lantern fans care about.

I loved this panel too:

Oh, Hal, honey. We know.

Daredevil #107

Dakota totally rules. She's just saying what we're all thinking.

Uncanny X-Men #498

Hey, look what I'm reading now!

I think it was the cover with Cyclops and Emma in the sixties get-up from last month that got me interested. Or maybe I was just bothered by the fact that there was a Brubaker title on the shelves that I wasn't reading. Or maybe I just needed a fix while waiting for Giant Size Astonishing. Whatever the reason, I added this title to my pull list and have been enjoying this story arc immensely so far. I also immensely enjoyed the extreme beefcake bondage cover this week. Oh Wolverine. Always getting tied up with your shirt off.

I read an unprecedented number of X-Men books this week, I think. And they were all really good. Besides the ones I'm writing about here, I also enjoyed Wolverine First Class and, as always X-Men First Class (complete with yet another adorable Colleen Coover back-up!).

Blue Beetle #27

Will Pfeifer steps in to guest write this issue and does a great job. It's a fun, wacky story that perfectly suits the title. Plus, there's lots of Traci Thirteen, which I am pleased about. Will Pfeifer rules.

And the cover, by Rafael Albuquerque, is really beautiful too.

Man, how is next week going to live up to this week?! It's just not possible!

Monday, May 26, 2008

Comics Are For Everybody!

Hey y'all. There's a new blog for you to check out. This one is written by my pal/bandmate/comic shop co-worker, Tiina Johns. It's over at the Shameless Magazine site (a Canadian feminist blog/magazine) and it's called Comics Are For Everybody. It aims to introduce people to comic books who may otherwise be intimidated or feel that comics have nothing to offer them. Tiina loves to recommend books to new comic readers, and that's just what she's doing on this blog.

Quick Reviews: Super Friends #3 and Marvel Adventures Avengers #24

As is often the case, this week the best comics were the all-ages ones. There were other good comics for sure; Catwoman and The Spirit were both exceptionally good, but the all-ages titles rocked it.

Super Friends #3

This was really funny. I felt that so far this series was good for really young kids, but very bland. This issue, however, was very cute and entertaining. Mostly because Faust was wearing finger puppets that control the Super Friends. And also because he instructs the kids on how to make their own puppets.

And then when he uses the brainwashed Super Friends to collect the three mystical items (wheel, bell, jar), he can't open the jar...because he has puppets on his fingers!

And if he takes them off, the Super Friends will clobber him! Oh, Faust. You gotta think these things through!

Ok, and also...the Super Friends decide to all switch costumes because that way the finger puppets won't work (?). My first thought was "Who does Wonder Woman switch with? She's the only female!"

Of course. I'll bet this whole plan was Aquaman's idea. It's probably his plan for everything. "Hey guys, let's all switch costumes! I'll be Wonder Woman!"

Bonus panels!

I love this because you know Aquaman has been waiting for a really long time to yell this:

And Superman just cuts him off with a big ol' hand. Poor Aquaman.

Also...Batman visiting Superman in jail!


Marvel Adventures Avengers #24

Jeff Parker is only writing a couple more issues of this, which is too bad. It really is the best Avengers comic on the stands.

In this issue the Avengers all suddenly really hate each other and fight constantly. It's funny. It all starts when Captain America gets zapped with a mysterious ray gun and bowls Ant Man over with a cob of corn during lunch.

And that leads to this hilarious argument:

The team realizes there's a problem, so they call up the guy who knows the most about anger management:

"Yes, it's purple." Ha!

After a therapy session with Doc Samson, the Avengers are told they need to go fight some bad guys to get the rage out of their systems. So they go pick a fight with Hydra. It doesn't work, and more hilarious arguing ensues:

It's a great comic. I highly recommend.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Operation Hulk

All you guys with your fancy video game systems can keep your GTA 4. The best game to ever hit the market doesn't require a console:

Hell yeah! Who will operate on Hulk? Iron Man and Spider-Man, apparently.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Mike Holmes Rules!

I wanted to share this awesome sketch that local cartoonist all-star Mike Holmes did for me. I asked for a sketch of me having a beer with Hal Jordan. Here it is:

Pretty great, eh?

He also just did this amazing poster for an upcoming show, featuring Windom Earle, Wordburglar, The Gideons and my band (The Stolen Minks). I'm Batman on the poster.


I've said it before and I'll say it again, DC needs to hire this guy to draw Teen Titans.

To see the fantastic comics that he's done for the local weekly paper, check out his Flickr site. His ongoing True Story series is especially awesome, which has him drawing true stories that people send him. Here's the story that I sent him:

So, in summary, Mike Holmes is awesome.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Rating The Super Hunks #19: Iron Fist (Daniel Rand)

Time to revisit one of my favourite features here at LBW. It's been awhile since I've rated a superhunk, and it isn't because I've lost interest in hunky superheroes. Believe me. Let's take a look at the sexiest man this side of K'un L'un...


Costume/Appearance: The classic Iron Fist costume has all the makings of a typical douchebag club outfit. Most noticeably, we have a giant chest tattoo of a dragon, exposed by an open shirt, and a massive popped collar. Danny's costume also boldly includes trendy elements from female fashion such as capri-cut leggings, ballet flats, and a ribbon belt. Add to that a pretty crazy facemask with long ribbon tails flying off the end, paint the whole outfit lime green and canary yellow, and you have a look that's so insane it has to be respected.

And you know what's sexy? A big glowing fist.

Under the hood, Danny Rand is the super hero that most closely resembles my real life boyfriend. Slim, blonde, giant chest tattoo (I'm kidding). He's a good-looking guy.

Small build for a super-hero, particularly when standing next to his massive pal, Power Man. But he's, y'know, approachable-looking. Not really hunky or macho, or even dreamy, but he's cute. And his fist glows so he's always well-lit.


Personality: See, normally I see a wealthy white guy who is really into Asian stuff and I think "what a douche" and walk away. But Danny makes it work.

Danny had a somewhat unconventional childhood. And by unconventional, I mean his wealthy father took him to a mythical city as a boy to study martial arts. During this family vacation, Danny witnessed the horrible deaths of both of his parents. He ended up sticking around and mastering martial arts, eventually obtaining the power of the Iron Fist by ramming his fist into the heart of a dragon. Despite these seemingly traumatic events, Danny is very well-balanced and laid back. I would attribute this to the fact that he: a) is incredibly wealthy, and b) can punch through pretty much anything with his big glowing fist.

I know what you're thinking: the heir to a family fortune who witnessed the deaths of his parents and then learned the hell out of martial arts before returning to America? Sounds a lot like Batman. Yeah, except you could actually hang out with Danny Rand for more than five minutes without wanting to kill yourself. You can party with Danny. He's a fun guy. Maybe it's because he's a Marvel, maybe it's because he was created in the seventies (aka - the party decade), but Iron Fist is an enjoyable character. And he has cool friends.


Day Job: He inherited his dad's company and now he's crazy rich. Despite this, he charged for his superhero services as one of the Heroes for Hire. Is that weird?

Hey, y'know what was sexy? When Danny Rand was Daredevil for awhile. That was cool.


Sexiness of Super Powers: Big. Glowing. Fist.


Cons: From reading Power Man and Iron Fist comics, the New Avengers, and even from reading the current Iron Fist series I don't get a sense that Danny is the brightest bulb in the Marvel universe.

He's not a detective, really. And he'd kinda dull. And he maybe shouldn't stand next to his very tall and attractive friend Power Man all the time.

- 3


Not bad, Fist! That actually places you ahead of Daredevil, which seems highly unlikely. I guess when you don't leave a trail of dead girlfriends in your wake, it helps you score higher as a hunk.

And now I leave you with an unintentionally sexy panel:

Sunday, May 11, 2008

More Iron Man PIctures!

Because you can't have too many...

Here's FCBD volunteer helper Hillary with Iron Man:

And, since Halifax has been hosting the IIHF World Men's Hockey Championship for the past week or so, here's Iron Man with some German hockey fans:

And some Slovakian hockey fans:

All the world loves Iron Man!

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Free Comic Book Day With Iron Man!

I've been meaning to post these for days. Here are some pictures from the Strange Adventures Free Comic Book Day 2008 Celebration. It was once again held in the St. David's Church Hall up the street from the shop. There were 20,000 free comic books available to the public. Also...Iron Man was there!

I really can't get enough photos of Iron Man walking around doing stuff.

Here's Iron Man with Darwyn Cooke, who was once again kind enough to spend the day doing free sketches for people:

And here's Iron Man with me:

The man in the iron suit is the guy I'm marrying. He can't take credit for making this awesome costume, though. It's the handiwork of the talented Jay Silver.

Here are some more photos, these ones taken by Spencer Cantley:

Aw, it looks like Iron Man's snaps came undone in that last one.

Needless to say, Iron Man was a huge hit with the kids (and the grown-ups). I'm glad it was a nice day for once.