Thursday, March 29, 2012

Thursday Thoughts - 3-29-12

Welcome back to Thursday Thoughts comic book fans. This weeks' thoughts all deal with comics, which shouldn't surprise you, but who knows. I'm starting off with a few topics dealing with some awesome female stars.

1. Witchblade was pretty bad until Ron Marz took over. I struggled to get through it before he took over. It really was bad. I started reading the series with a run of issues from #115 or 116 through 125 or so. The writing and the art made me an instant fan. I then spotted the compendiums and figured she's awesome maybe she's got a ton of great stuff behind her. Wrong. The first volume especially was quite horrid. As I've already stated, I struggled reading it. That was until Marz' pen guided Sara's adventures. I honestly would not recommend anything before he took over unless you really just want to read it all.

2. I think Power Girl’s costume with the tit window was one of the worst visuals ever. Other than that, I liked the costume. Simply put, it was stupid. Seriously. And I believe they even tried to explain it in a conversation with Superman. But I could be wrong. People only knew about her because of her large breasts. Just unnecessary. And her new one sucks too by the way.

3. Pre-ordering is great for everybody. It guarantees you a copy of a book you want. Plus it gets creators paid. With that, it increases the chances of creators doing more solo work. But I hate the idea of pre-ordering subsequent issues of a book before I even get the first in hand. I was thinking about that when I put in orders for the second and third issues of a series. Just odd. But that won't stop me from pre-ordering though.

4. There should be some kind of ongoing ninja vs. pirate book. I'd like to write one. This match-up is a favorite on the internet. Just google or bing it and have a laugh or a hundred. Now we ALL know ninja would destroy pirates, but it'd be nice to see it play out on the pages. What side are you on?

5. John Stewart and Guy Gardner are the best Green Lanterns. They really are. Be honest, Hal and Kyle are kinda weak and boring. John and Guy just hold my interest more. And they have more imagination.

What do you think people? Have a subject you want to know my thoughts about? Let me know and I'll throw it in. Keep it nerdy my friends. Thanks for looking.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Cover of the Week for 3-28-12

Happy New Comic Day! It's a beautiful day to head to your shop and buy some comics. And because of the weather, why not read them outside? This guy won't be doing that because I have class. But I do have some nice books that will be waiting to be picked up. If someone wants to do that for me, I certainly won't object. Just sayin.

So taking a look at the releases this week, it was slightly sad because they were so few good looking pieces. Choosing this one brings to mind the phrase "easy peasy." Representing a franchise I've known since I was a kid, my choice is the center of a recent controversy which I actually don't care about. The controversy, not the franchise. So delaying no further, I present Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #8. Take a look ladies and gentlemen.

I'll be honest, I don't know which is the official release. My instinct says it's the one in which they're wearing the red bandanas. But I've seen the individually colored one on several sights. So either somebody got it wrong or they're both available. I doubt the latter is true. I posted them both just in case and because they good with their own colors.

We can thank Dan Duncan for this cover depicting our favorite turtles taking on the deadly mousers. My favorite turtle, Leo, on top with twin katana ready is looking good. That's a lot of mousers, but the turtles can handle. Hopefully they can. I guess I'll find out when I read it. Nice piece Mr. Duncan.

Go ninja, go ninja, go! I had to do it. Let me know what you think. Keep it nerdy my friends.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

The Activity #3 Review

The Activity is one of publisher-extraordinaire Image Comics' younger titles. Written by Nathan Edmondson and drawn by Mitch Gerads, it's focused on a small special forces unit within the Intelligence Support Activity, or I.S.A. Designated Team Omaha, they consist of individuals with backgrounds in intelligence and the military. Assisting Edmondson and Gerads are color assistants Joseph Frazzeta and Jordan Gibson with letters by Jeff Powell.

This third issue opens with the team on mission in Gardez, Afghanistan. A mission that has gone severly wrong. From there most of the issue is set on their ride home. There is some tension between two characters as Master Sargeant Luke is arguing about a call Major Zoe made in the field. This clash stems from that call which may or may not have led to the death of one of the three "delta escorts" who were with them. Cooler heads prevail as the book goes on.

The highlight of this issue next to the character conflict is Gerads' work visually. Not as a whole, but specifically dealing with the facial expressions to show the mood. This is especially noticeable with the sunken heads and closed eyes as a result of what occurred in Gardez. You can feel the vibe amongst the group about how the mission went.

As far as the art in whole, it doesn't really stand out to me. But I feel it gets the job done. Darker tones and shadows set the mood. Not a lot of variance in color, mostly black, blue, brown, and green. But that's not a negative. This type of book wouldn't benefit from numerous and bright colors.

One aspect of the series I don't like is that it's hard to keep track of everyone name-wise. Real names as well as code-names are used together, when names are used at all. This probably isn't an issue if you have had them straight in your head since the first issue. But with the death in the book, the weight isn't truly felt because there's no frame of reference for the character. It would be different if she was a member of their unit.

For this specific book, we don't know why they were in Gardez. That may have been intentional to place focus on how the characters immediately dealt with the failure. Pesonally, I would have liked some intel on the mission. There were several flashbacks throughout the book where some pieces of information on the mission could have been relayed to readers.

I like special forces type books. I've read G.I. Joe books for years as well, so if you've read those, that will give you an idea of how this book works. I recommend this series and welcome any thoughts on it after you read up or you're already reading. Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Thursday Thoughts - 3-22-12

Hello funny book lovers. Welcome to my new weekly feature, Thursday Thoughts. This feature will consist of five thoughts related to comics (and occasionally other nerdy interests). Sometimes an entry will include topics directly dealing with certain comics, characters, creators, publishers, conventions, cosplaying, the industry in general, and any number of other areas. Sometimes I will throw in something about toys, video games, tv shows, and movies. With that said, let us begin.

1. Being that this is the first entry, I must start it off right. I think Cyclops is the greatest X-Man. Why? Because he's been around since the start and he's awesome. Despite Wolverine's popularity, I like him too, Cyclops is the face of the X-Men to me. It hasn't been easy, but he's led the X-Men and maybe he's made some questionable decisions along the way, but a leader can't always make everybody happy.

2. Image and Dark Horse are my favorite Indie publishers. As a kid, I loved Spawn and Wild.C.A.T.s. I fell out of them for a while, but got back into Spawn several years ago. I've read many Image titles over the years, especially recently as my tastes have expanded. Dark Horse kinda surprised me. While going through my collection one day, I noticed how many Dark Horse titles were there. Not complaining at all. They were all quality books. Currently, I have several books from both publishers on my pull-list. Mostly Image course. And they rock. I recommend The Activity, Shinku, and Spawn. Image, especially, likely has something for almost any reading taste.

3. DC’s New 52 novelty is wearing off. It really is. I've just been looking at the series, some of which I'm actually enjoying. Some I feel like I might be reading just to read. I've dropped a few and plan to drop more. I just don't care about much of them anymore. It was new and exciting while being mysterious as well. Not so much anymore. The fun has faded for the most part.

4. I disliked Arkham Asylum and Arkham City. I liken them to chores for the most part. The only part from the series that I really enjoyed was the downloadable combat map in AA. On this map, you could fight goons endlessly until you died. I'd have some fast-paced rap playing and would just go at it. I had a ball. The rest of the game? Not so much. I couldn't wait to get through with most of it. I had to do a second play-through for an achievement or two and it was mad boring. I kid you not. I questioned if the achievement was even worth the trouble. And its' sequal, AC, wasn't any better. More space in the city, blah blah blah. It still wasn't fun.

5. Avengers movie action figures suck. Seriously. They look horrible. Take a look a few here. Especially that hideous Hulk.

And these are from the same company who makes G.I. Joe, Marvel Universe, and Marvel Legends? Wow. I shouldn't be surprised considering how a lot of movie figures seem to lack in quality. But it's never been an entire movie line. X-Men Origins: Wolverine had some figures worth purchasing. Even though they weren't that great. Iron Man 2 had several as well. Next time you step into the action figure aisle, if you haven't seen these abominations already, take a look at them. But don't stare too long, you'll be scarred by ugly forever.

So what did you think about this debut entry of Thursday Thoughts? Have a subject you want to know my thoughts about? Let me know and I'll throw it in. Keep it nerdy my friends. Thanks for looking.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Cover of the Week for 3-21-12

Happy New Comic Day! Another lovely week of comics for us. So let's flood our shops and buy some good books. I won't lie, there aren't that many cool covers out this week. Once again we celebrate the eternal battle between two awesome fictional forces. Check out the variant for Snake Eyes #11.

Yo Joe! The credit for this one is rather tricky. Several sources give due to different artists, David Williams and Kelsey Shannon. I don't know either of their work to be able to visually differentiate between the two. If anyone knows for sure, let me know, and I'll correct it.

The G.I. Joe books have taken home several CotW awards. It's not totally my Yo Joe bias, it just happens that they have nice covers. The image above is actually three covers formed to make one image. So for this week, focus solely on the middle section which features Cobra Commander's giant metal head in front of dueling sword-brothers Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow. In the reflection on chrome dome's faceplate, you'll notice the burning American flag. That's some imagery right there.

I love G.I. Joe. Now you know. And knowing is...well you know the rest. Thanks for looking.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Kelly Sue and Dexter Soy Bring Back Carol Danvers as Captain Marvel

I've been preparing a post about some Marvel females who should be starring in their own series, because, well Marvel is slacking in that area. On March 17th at WonderCon 2012, Marvel revealed that Kelly Sue Deconnick and Dexter Soy will be teaming up to put Carol Danvers back in the spotlight. One quick note, I wish I was at WonderCon. It's one I would like to attend at some point. For the convention and just to visit the area. But back to the point, in July, former Ms. Marvel will be returning to a solo book as Captain Marvel.

I've grown fond of Ms. Marvel in recent years after seeing her in action in more Avengers' books as well as in the Marvel Ultimate Alliance video games. I don't have much knowledge of Kelly Sue outside of her arc on the previous Supergirl series. And I don't believe I've heard of Dexter Soy before. Below is a preview page of Soy's work.

I will say I'm not really digging her new costume. The design as a whole doesn't appeal to me. But maybe that'll change when she's slinging enemies around the cosmos. I figure a fist in the face of a cool enemy might enhance anyone's appeal.

I wonder they have in store for Ms. Danvers. It'll be interesting just for the fact that when it's released, it'll be the only female series available. That takes me back to the list of characters who could hold their own in either an ongoing or a mini. What do you think about Carol returning to some solo adventures? Let me know and thanks for looking.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Haul for the Week of 3-14-12

I finally made it out to my shop after being away for a few weeks. So of course I brought home a ton of books. That of course never bothers me, but it's better now that I'm almost up to date on almost everything on my pull-list. Almost. So take a look at the fun a three week absence can provide.

Yes, there are a lot of goodies here. From Marvel including some X-books, Spidey, and Moon Knight, amongst others. The ones tagged with that ugly DC logo are mostly #7's. Some standouts include Batwing and Batwoman. Image, comic publisher supreme, produced an issue of Invincible I missed, Spawn, Thief of Thieves (which I want to try out, but I still need #1) and Walking Dead (which I'm still behind in). A few of IDW's G.I. Joe titles. Some Dark Horse titles, Immortal and The Strain. And rounding out the haul is Dynamite Entertainment's Nowhere Man. So basically, I have some good reading to look forward to. Simply amazing.

Oh, did you think I was done? No way jack. I had to hit up Target in hopes (they slacked for most of 2011) that they restocked some action figures. Check them out.

I mostly collect Marvel Universe and G.I. Joe, but I also like Marvel Legends and have been waiting to get my hands on the new figures. I only found these three there though. I'd like Thor as well. Here's hoping I find him. I would've preferred Iron Man's current armor to the Extremis armor, which I still like, so no complaints. I think he'll look good next to the Iron Man 2 War Machine movie series figure.

I don't know what it is about Klaw, but I've become a bit of a fan of him after picking up his Marvel Universe comic pack version and seeing him in several comics including a recent issue of the relaunched Daredevil series. The same applies to Constrictor. He was a character I had little knowledge of until I grabbed his Marvel Universe figure. I haven't read any comics with him however.

For the G.I. Joe figures, I hadn't expected to see any of them for a while if at all. I'm a fan of Sci-Fi and definitely happy to see him. With Airtight, I was on the fence about him. I want the character, but I wasn't totally sold on the Renegades version. After checking out a couple of reviews, I'm gonna keep him.

Love the haul? Of course you do. What's not to love? Awesome comics and figures make for a great day. This is Dragon signing off. Thanks for nerding out with me.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Cover of the Week for 3-14-12

Happy New Comic Day! It's a beautiful day for buying and reading some comics. I've been playing comic catch-up for some time and am pleased to say that I am just about current on most of my books. I'm only a couple weeks behind. And with this week's releases, I'll have some good spring break reading to look forward to.

But enough of that, let's get to why you're here. There weren't that many covers that stood out. But the one I picked represents something that I've become quite fond of in recent years. So ladies and gentlemen of comics, watch as I hand the crown to Thief of Thieves #2.

Shaun Martinbrough, who's also the interior artist of the series, provided the art for this heist cover. The reason I like this piece is because I'm a fan of heist fiction, if that's what you can call it. But I suppose the broader term would be crime fiction. This cover reminds me of the Kane & Lynch video game series, the movies Heat and Takers, and so much more. Martinbrough has money and jewelry falling around everywhere. A fresh heist, you gotta love it. When I browsed Previews and saw the solicit for this, I was tempted to order it, but I didn't. Now I'm thinking I want to check the book out. If my lcs has copies of #1 around, then I'm all over it.

So what do you think funny book lovers? Thoughts on the series if you're reading it? Thoughts on the cover? Let me know. Thanks for looking.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Cover of the Week for 3-7-12

Happy New Comic Day! I've been a bit distracted with a test and some other stuff. I felt good about the test and now that it's out of the way, we can get to some comic fun. It seemed to be a pretty light week. Well it is for me. And since I'm behind in my reading anyway and my wallet could use the break, I'm fine with that. This week I present the first Aspen book to take the weekly crown. Why is that noteworthy? It's really not, just wanted to point it out. Take a look at Charismagic #5.

This book stood out to me because of the colors used and the vibrant look of them. I love the cool colors. And this cover has all three. A fully-clothed lady wielding a cool sword never hurts either. I like cats too. This cover has a lot to visually take in. Lovely, lovely piece. Khary Randolph and Emilio Lopez, nice work my artistic friends. I don't read much Aspen regularly. And I can't say I'd be interested in this book based on previews. But I could definitely see adding it to my collection if I found it at a convention. And that's solely based on the cover. I've done that for tons of books. Of course I'd still read it. It would be a crime otherwise.

I should come up with a nerdy exit line. Until then, thanks for stopping by fellow nerds. Until next time.