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Archive for January, 2009

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I have to run!

The image comes from a recent video interview that  Didio gave at Newsarama where he briefly discusses the “return of Barry Allen” and what heroes of his caliber bring to the DC Universe.  I thought it was a great image of the recently returned Scarlet Speedster and knowing that I hadn’t seen it, I thought a few of my fellow Flash fans might appreciate it as well (by all means, feel free to let me know if this image was taken from a scene of Final Crisis or some such).

Recognize the artist?

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Not a stupid, stupid rat creature!

The end of Jeff Smith’s Bone is a very bitter sweet thing for me.  On the one hand I completely loved the epic story and proudly showcase it, along with the Art of Bone HC, on my bookshelf at home as one of the greatest comic works I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading…but on the other hand the ending also breaks my heart on some level and it’s somewhat difficult to take in that respect.  It actually takes something out of me and while I understand it, it remains a pretty tough pill to swallow.  But that’s a good thing, I got wrapped up in the story and the characters just that much, and in the end, I definitely want the best for each of them.  What does that have to do with anything?  Well, after a 5-year run, Scholastic has just released the final volume of Bone in COLOR, and it’s a bittersweet moment once more.  My hats off to Steve Hamaker who deserves serious kudos (alongside his Eisner nominations) for the new dimensions that he gave to the story through his vibrant colors and all the added detail.  Steve’s bone_hd-side_1work brought the saga alive in an entirely new way and where I was initially a little hesitant to see the tale in color, I was sold immediately after seeing what he was able to do.  For a preview of Steve’s skill, and the final volume, be sure to stop by Jeff Smith’s blog.

And now that the story has been completed by Scholastic, here’s hoping for a new [brick volume] of Bone to go alongside the B&W edition, this time with Steve’s fantastic colors!

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The Blue Beetle Legacy: Dan Garrett and Ted Kord

One of the things I was able to do on my day off yesterday was to finally catch my first episode of the new Batman series, “Fall of the Blue Beetle,” and as a huge fan of the 90’s animated series, I”m happy to say that I really enjoyed it and that the show has an awful lot going for it.  The art style is slick, the characters look like an amalgamation of a Dick Sprang and a Bruce Timm illustration, guest stars abound, the action is intense, the colors jump off the screen, the music is both retro and catchy — and basically the creators aren’t afraid to just have a lot of fun with it.  They’ve said that their goal was to evoke the feeling of watching a good Saturday Morning Cartoon again and judging from this episode they’ve done just that.  And more. Granted, it’s a little odd not to hear Kevin Conroy voicing the Dark Knight, but Diedrich Bader really does pull off a great performance.

What I think I enjoyed most about the episode was that the good folks involved portrayed Ted Kord in exactly the manner I had always hoped the comics would have done far more of — as a superbly talented, if humorous, crime fighter with scientific know-how that did the very best he could to put his talents to good use.  He wasn’t a joke, he was the consumate “hero.”  A theme they elude to often in the episode.  A select number of authors brought that part of the Blue Beetle out to great effect over the years and its too  bad he’s “gone” so that people can’t see more of it.  Then again, bb_hd1Booster Gold has been known to stir things up in the timestream from time to time so you never really know do you?  Anyhow, great job portraying good ‘ol Ted on the show!

(Ah, and let me take this oppotunity to say that I really do like the new Blue Beetle as well, both here and in the comics.  Ted Kord will likely always be my favorite but you’ve got a pretty great character in Jaime Reyes as well and I love the Scarab tech — plust the great visual.  Heck, and he’s from El Paso to boot!)

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Persona 3's Aigis

While at work yesterday, on a miserable Monday full of cold drizzle and near freezing temperatures, I thought to myself: “I can’t believe we haven’t had a single snow day this year.  Usually by now we’ve had at least one.” I shook off the thought, but by yesterday afternoon I started to hear talk of winter weather warnings over half the country, that Oklahoma was getting pounded, and that Texas was next.  No kidding.  I went to bed last night not knowing what was in store and wouldn’t you know it, first thing this morning I wake to find that temperatures have dropped below freezing early, lots of freezing rain and ice is in the forecast and that the University is indeed closed!  Most schools are.  Which means…snow day!

That said, my thoughts and prayers go out to those that have to travel on the roads today and tomorrow — be safe out there!

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[12/28 Update:  Thanks to two days of winter weather now, I’ve had ample time to play Persona 3:FES (no worries, I got some work around the house done as well).  Some 20 hours into the game, after a couple of late nights, I’ve beaten the second block of Tarturus, including the bosses and just took down the next boss in the main storyline as well (a little easier than I expected no doubt thanks to a little leveling).  For those that have played the game, I’m just about to add Fuuka to my party and look forward to seeing where things go from here!  Also, feels good to finally have a real sense of what I’m doing now, and now that my party has leveled up considerably I’m able to spend much more time in Tarturus getting better and making the most of the opportunies there and during the social time of the day.  I love this game.]

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As y’all know by now, I dig Scott C’s. quirky sense of humor, his impeccable comedic delivery, and the fantastic illustrations, so you can imagine that I’d dig the “Rocket House” here.

Be sure to check out Scott’s blog (or see his portal on the sidebar) for more information on an upcoming show in L.A. — no doubt featuring more unique cut-away living spaces like this one.  And dangit, I want to try the anti gravity room!  Not so much the garbage disposal room…

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meggan_hd1According to Newsarama there had been a rumor circulating last week that Captain Britain & MI:13 was on the chopping block, but thankfully, over the weekend Marvel quickly squashed the rumor…and while promising a strong commitment to the book, and an upcoming  storyline featuring none other than Doctor Doom and Dracula, they provided readers with an additional piece of news:

The series isn’t cancelled—in fact, we’re coming up on a storyline that’s going to change the team forever starting in Captain Britain & MI13 #10 when Doom & Dracula enter the mix. Add in the return of Meggan, an appearance by the team in Mighty Avengers and more for a pretty exciting time to be a fan of the series!

Wow, taking that at face value and considering the creative team in charge, I’m going to assume that it’s safe for me to get really freaking excited about this!  I’ve been waiting patiently for her to return following the sacrifice she made for Captain Britain & Co. in the pages of Uncanny X-Men several years ago (ironically, at Chris Claremont’s hands), excalibur_vol_1_42knowing full well that she was way too special a character to be gone for too long — that when the time was right a good creative team would bring her back and do good by her and the good Captain.  So here’s to Paul Cornell, Leonard Kirk and the [very hopeful] return of Meggan to the Marvel Universe!

And if you really aren’t all that aware of Captain Britain and Meggan, or what all the hub-bub is about, PLEASE do yourself a favor and track down the original Excalibur material by Chris Claremont and Alan Davis.  I guarantee that they’ll be some of the most well crafted, entertaining, comics that you’ll ever read.

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Comic Book Resources just wrapped up and in-depth interview with with Dark Horse Comic’s Executive Editor Diana Schutz, and its worth noting here at the blog that during the second part of the interview she provides a hint about what we can expect during the anniversary celebration…and notice she uses the word “event[s]” in the plural:

This year also marks the 25th anniversary of ‘Usagi Yojimbo, ‘and probably the coolest of all the various anniversary events Stan and I have planned is ‘Yokai,’ a hardcover original graphic novel, fully painted by Stan! Yokai are the monsters, demons, and spirits of Japanese folklore, so they are perfect subjects for a Usagi story in which every page is a color painting.

Stan Sakai has already indicated that the book would be ~ 57 pages in length and that we should probably look for it later in the Fall due to the intense time and effort it will require (on top of the current workload).  I can’t wait, and hopefully there will  be a teaser image or two in the near future to show you.

Fortunately, in the meantime, the good folks over at the Usagi Yojimbo Dojo have provided a special one-page preview image of the [full-color] Usagi short story featured in this year’s Dark Horse FCBD offering in May entitled “One Dark and Stormy Night” for our viewing pleasure.  Likely as a means by which to placate all us rabid (or is that rabbit?) fans!

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I love the visual of the rain pouring down from Usagi's Conical hat!

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