Monday, April 24, 2006

Annihilation: A Marvel Mega-Event I'm Digging On

I swear to God, I'm just as surprised as you. I thought House of M was el stinko. Civil War looks to be an overblown mess from the lead-ins I've read so far. I think the last Marvel Mega-Event that I've actually enjoyed was The Evolutionary War. And that was because I was young and dumb. It isn't, in fact, any good at all.

And yet, despite my best intentions... despite my amazingly high initial level of non-interest in every character involved in this story... I can't help thinking Annihilation is boss.

I've only read the Prologue issue and Nova #1, but I can already tell that the puppetmaster behind this particular multi-part story actually seems to have a direct, linear story that he wants to tell. Keith Giffen ,you have made me anticipate a Marvel Event, and for that I'm not quite sure whether to thank you.

I really believe that the Nova character is going to come out of this story revitalized and full of heat. I'm not sure if there's already talk of a regular series in the near future, but it certainly wouldn't come as a surprise. Yes, Nova is basically Peter Parker in the Green Lantern Corps... but damnit, that's not a bad concept to hang a character on.

I think the greatest asset this story has is that it is, as far as I know, staying the hell out of regular series and confining itself to the related miniseries (Nova, Silver Surfer, Super Skrull and Ronan). This gives the story clear structure, and makes coordination between books an infinitely simpler prospect.

Marvel has also put great writers and artists on the books. It seems simple, but a lot of times the creative teams on big event books aren't up to the task. Hot writers with hotshot attitudes maybe find it a bit difficult to work under the confines of somebody else's game plan. And the best artists for some books aren't necessarily the "Artists of the Minute". Sometimes a book requires a very specific type of art style, one that might not even be en vogue at the moment. The art on Prologue and especially Nova was close to perfect. Kev Walker has a very Giffen-esque quality to his work, which is an artstyle I've always liked.

I'm not a "cosmic" guy. I'm certainly not a Marvel guy. But this story has got my attention, and that says a lot for the strength of its execution. If the other minis' first issues can hold up to the high quality set by Annihilation: Nova #1, I'm in for the long haul. And it looks like it might be a pretty nice ride.

And hey, maybe if this little event book sells decent numbers, we can hope for Marvel to take notice, and stop cramming "concept books" that fall apart in the execution down our throats.

Marvel can be proud of Annihilation. That can't be said for a lot of the marquee books that come out of the House of Ideas. And I think Marvel should be encouraging the development of more projects like Annihilation. Not that anyone's asking me. But they should. Oh yes, they should.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Oh god, the pain....

I am currently experiencing "Spider-Man trapped under massive machinery" level pain in my lower back as a result of the bane to every 30-year-old man's physical well-being, unsafe lifting. Last night, I found myself unable to sleep while laying perfectly motionless on my back, so I am running on virtually no sleep. It's truly a miserable state of affairs.

I mean, I just turned 30 like two weeks ago, and my body has already decided to begin the decomposition process? Nuts to you, lower back. I think you suck. I'ma gonna do nothin' but lie on the couch and watch Mystery Science Theatre when I get home from work.

Oh, and down Robaxacet like M&Ms. Yum yum.

Friday, April 14, 2006

My First Comic

Hmmm... First Comic Week, eh?

It was actually pretty hard to remember what my first comic was. I can't give 100% assurance that this was in fact my very first comic, but it's certainly the first one I remember owning. And actually, considering how confusing I must have found it, I'm surprised I kept reading them. The comic? Legion of Super-Heroes #295.

Wow. This is one strange comic. I notice, upon rereading it, that it's a fill-in issue, with the always-satisfying Keith Giffen only pencilling the framing sequence, and Howard Bender working on the bulk of the issue. I guess Timber Wolf is trying to decide whether to leave the Legion with Light Lass for some reason, and his buddy Blok decides that the best way to help him figure it out is to force him to watch a completely unrelated holotape of an early LSH adventure. Blok is kind of a dick, it seems. I think he just doesn't like to watch tv alone.

So, they watch the tape, and it's this convoluted story that tries to explain why there aren't any Green Lanterns in the future. Only there are. And one of them is Universo, who I had never heard of, but is apparently a big deal (from the looks of him, I guessed that he was a pirate or something). Blok figures this out, but then decides not to tell anybody, either because he figures if it was true they'd already know, or because there's no reason anybody would give a rat's ass.

Oh, and Cosmic Boy is a sadistic sumbitch, that's for sure. Geez, that bug looks pretty juicy, eh?

Anyways, in the end Timber Wolf decides to stay, and gets dumped by his girlfriend. You know, the Giffen run on LSH is one of my favorite runs of any comic, but this fill-in issue is a stinker. I'm glad I didn't make any decisions about comic reading based on this issue alone, because then this blog would be about woodcarving or clog dancing or something.

I must have been a weird kid, because despite the lameness of this comic, I read it until it just about fell apart.

So, there you have it: Jhunt's first comic. A fill-in right in the middle of one of comicbookdom's seminal runs. Nice job, moron. If I had just started a month earlier, I'd be talking about the conclusion to The Great Darkness Saga, possibly the greatest story-arc in Legion history. Nuts.

Related Posts:
Everybody Loves the Giff

Monday, April 10, 2006

Missing In Action

Just a quick note... so busy. So very, very busy. We moved back into the condo on Friday, and Tam and I have been opening boxes ever since. So many boxes...

The dark side of being an avid reader is that the sheer amount of books I've accumalated is a bit staggering. And they all need to be reshelved.

We're making fair progress, and I am hopeful that we'll be back to normal within a day or two.

And at that time, I should have both the time and energy to begin blogging again with some semblance of regularity.


Thursday, April 06, 2006

Bob Ross: The New Mario?

This is a completely awesome idea. Try not to have your minds blown when you hear it, okay?

Some company is actively developing a number of video games starring the world's most mellow landscape painter, the late Bob Ross. I guess they saw some demos of Nintendo's wacky new controller for the Revolution and thought "Hey, you could totally mime some painting with that sumbitch!". I hope whoever said that gets a raise, because an idea like that takes some serious courage to put forth at a pitch meeting.

I guess they're hoping that this game will appeal to ravers or something. I don't really know too much about ravers(except that they like soothers and glowsticks and the Teletubbies), but this seems like the kind of thing they might enjoy. Actually, maybe stoners would be a better target demographic. The thing is, it's tougher to get stoners to go to a store to buy something. Because of the marijuana that they smoke like a cigarette. I hear it makes you lazy. And/or schizo. Stay in school, kids!

Now, this game probably won't be available for the XBox, which means I won't be able to play it on Clutch(I have named my XBox after my favorite G.I.Joe soldier, just to raise the geek quotient a little bit higher). Still, it's a concept that deserves, nay... demands recognition.

I have very fond memories of lying on the couch when I was seventeen or so, hungover to the point that I could barely focus my eyes on anything without a piercing pain stabbing my temples. Watching Bob Ross paint a seascape or mountain range always soothed my discomfort. His gentle voice lulling me into tranquility as every pore in my body released the noxious stench of cheap draft beer.

Those were good times, people. And that's why I fully support the development of Super Bob Ross Sunshine, or whatever the game is going to be called.

Monday, April 03, 2006

I'm Hiding From the Blogosphere

Wow, the blogosphere can be a frightening place when you haven't read last week's comics yet. Case in point, I'm unable to log into my Bloglines account, as I am positive that a good 20 percent of the posts that have accumalated over the weekend make mention of All-Star Superman #3. Hell, if I had read it already this post would likely feature a review or shout-out. The facts of the matter are, however, that I haven't read it yet, which makes the Comics Blogosphere a dark, dangerous place, not unlike a minefield planted with spoiler-bombs. If such a thing existed.

The reason I've been so remiss with my four-color consumption? I was gifted with a beautiful XBox gaming console in honour of my aforementioned 30th birthday. No, I don't know what Tamar was thinking either. I guess the continual whinging I've been producing over the past couple of years finally wore her down. Games were bought (GTA:San Andreas, Outlaw Golf 2, NFL Street 2, and Splinter Cell), and time disappeared like mist on a lake.

Oh, and yes, it is a crystal XBox. It is so choice.

A quick note to all y'all who are showing up looking for Kicking and Screaming DVD news: I emailed a question through the Criterion site, and got a little note in return that gave a tentative street date of late August. No word of extras yet, but I'll keep poking around and see if I can get any further information. As it is, that news is far too awesome.

Oh, and we're getting the keys back to our rebuilt condo this Friday! We're going home! Only better, with new furniture, appliances, and flooring. And paint. Oh, and cabinets, as well. I'll be sure to post some pics after we get back in so you can compare them to the post-apocalyptic wasteland we left post-fire in November.

Sometimes it's good to be me.

Related Posts:
Condo In Flux
Criterion Is Reading My Mind