Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Oooo... scary...

io9 is reporting that John Malkovich is in negotiations to play the Vulture, and that Anne Hathaway might be playing... the Vulturess? What the...?!!? Maybe she'll be playing the Vulture's daughter? That's what'd make sense to me, but then I don't work in Hollywood.

He'll be back... in April!!

Of course, he never really was gone. Just lost in time. But Bruce Wayne will be back in April thanks to Grant Morrison. I betcha it'll involve a couple of Lazarus Pits, and the odd result of creating the device by which Ra's al Ghul will have some semblance of immortality. It should be a fun ride!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

"To become whole, I must kill you all!"

If we follow this logic, characters like the Punisher must have a long way to go.

Come to think of it, Galactus might edge out the Punisher as far as body counts go...

Intriguing tho', that in Galactus' first appearance the Big G sends out a robot called The Punisher to deal with those pesky FF people. There was even an Iron Man story later on where Shellhead takes on Galactus' former servant. Now why isn't that robotic Punisher offered as an action figure or Heroclix miniature? He looks mighty cool!

....what was I talking about again?

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

HeroClix Returns!!

More news via Robot Viking!

Comics need more...

GIANT ANTS!! And more monster mash-ups! Frankenstein and Dracula meet the ants from THEM!!

Pokemon with a Gil Kane cover!

Eh. Not really. But I could tell The Master's style anywhere! Looks like he was channeling some Atom-sized goodness!

Comics need more...

...giant Cthulu-esque monsters. Particularly superheroes. Superheroes need some giant external menace so that they're not fighting each other in stupid superpowereed slap-fights.

But maybe that's just me.

Image from Robot Viking.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Acidic Bullets vs. Disintegrating Flame!

For months now, I've been following, and there are days when I swear that I could post links here about everything they talk about. However, this little article about The Werewolves of War! deserves extra special mention. Here's their summary of an issue of Astounding Stories now available for free thanks to Project Gutenburg:
Published in the February 1931 issue of Astounding Stories, "Werewolves Of War" by D.W. Hall takes place seven years in the future, after the Slavs have overrun Europe and are now laying waste to the United States. The last scrappy defenders of America are just barely holding off the Slavs at California, and doing battle in the hazardous no-man's land of Nevada. D.W. Hall gives us the kind of writing you just don't see nowadays.
There are samples of at io9. Admittedly, the writing style isn't for everyone, but I love it! Two-fisted action coupled with breathless prose make for an exciting read. Jump to the link above to find out more about the acidic bullets! Witness an example of the anything-goes mentality which helped create the Golden Age of Comics!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Nicholas Cage's Fortress of Solitude

Via Yahoo discussing an article at The Daily Beast about Nick Cage's spending habits. More details at the Daily Beast article but Yahoo summarizes his purchases thusly:

If you can dream it, Nic Cage bought it: yachts, a jet, a castle, over 50 cars, over a million dollars' worth of comic books, multiple (supposedly haunted) mansions in New Orleans, two Bahamanian islands, shrunken heads that may or may not have been human, and, famously, a $500k Lamborghini once owned by the Shah of Iran. Most amusingly, Cage spent $276,000 on a dinosaur skull in a "heated auction with Leonardo DiCaprio." And though the article has details about Cage's many pets -- claiming that he kept antidote serum on his wall for the poison of his two King Cobras -- it neglects to mention at least one: Cage's pet octopus.

While the DB spins it as compulsive spending run amok, my spin is that he was collecting items for his secret Fortress of Solitude.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

I know, I know...

Postings have been pretty sparse lately. Can't blame my sidekick for that this time. This time it's 'cause I've been posting away over at my other blog, The Mighty M4!! I find it's tough to offer commentary while generating imagery.

Rest assured this blog's not dead.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Sidekick training

Postings here have been pretty sparse, I know. What can I say? Sidekick training takes a lot of time, and often a lot of computing power.

BTW, you truly need to witness the true Wisdom of Batman.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Martian goodness

I love DC Showcase presents Martian Manhunter Vol.2.

Be warned: I found a series of articles at The Absorbascon warning about the Pure Lunacy inside.

I say this is one of the main reasons to read it.

I'm looking forward to volume 3!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Back in the saddle again!

... For this weekend anyway. Paragon Studios is offering a free-play double-XP weekend for their City of Heroes games. After not playing for more than 3 months or so, I've reloaded my software and took the game for another test drive!

Quickly found out that Virtue Server is truly the place to be as two quick PUGs (Pick Up Games, for you non-players) and I raised my brand new character to level 16 over the course of about 5 hours of play! Pretty sweet! It was really just a matter of playing follow the leader as the team leaders quickly ran through different missions to get as far as they could in as little time as possible. No time to enjoy the scenery or even to read what the objectives of the missions were... Just bash badguys and collect XP.

Which reminded me of one of the reasons I don't play anymore. It's such a well-worn linear path up the XP ladder. Nothing new to challenge us. Great new special effects for powers with the new Power Customization options, and some new power combinations to explore. Just no new opponents. No new in-game models. No costumed villains. Sigh... That's one thing Champions Online has over COH: a World-of-Warcraft-like variety of opponents both in character models and in the physical size of the opponents. It was always discouraging to go up against an arch-villain in COH and the Huge-sized Tanks and Scrappers would surround the villain and defeat them before I got a chance to see what this nemesis looked like.

I'll play when I can this weekend. I don't think it'll change my mind about playing COH anymore but we'll see...

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Yes, it's true...

The format and images on my Mighty M4!! blog are indeed influenced by the comic book corner symbols I admired as a young lad.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Parallel world playtime!

OK. We've got the Squadron Supreme, Marvel's alternate world version of the Justice League. They inhabit Earth-712. (Man, and people complained when 52 limited the alternate worlds in the DC Universe to only 52!) Hyperion is the leader of the Squadron and is analogous to Superman.

Meanwhile, on Marvel Earth-616, we have the Imperial Guard. As Wikipedia describes them:
The Imperial Guard has many intentional resemblances to DC Comics' Legion of Super-Heroes. The Guard is headed by Gladiator, who is the team's analogue to the LSH's Superboy and, to a lesser extent Mon-El. Oddly enough Gladiator's real name is Kallark; a combination of Superboy's real names Kal-el and Clark. Most of the other members are direct equivalents in super-powers and have similar details of costume design to specific Legionnaires (such as Oracle matches Saturn Girl, Electron matches Cosmic Boy, Mentor matches Brainiac 5,and Flashfire matches Lightning Lad), but there are a number who differ greatly from their counterparts or who have no counterpart at all. The original Imperial Guard members seen in X-Men #107 were designed by artist Dave Cockrum, who had previously been best known for his work on the Legion of Super-Heroes, and all had direct counterparts among the Legionnaires. (Nightcrawler was intended to be in a Legion spinoff team book, but Cockrum left the book before he could be introduced, so he brought the character over to Marvel.) Later Guardsmen, beginning with the members introduced in X-Men #137, moved away from the Legion pastiche and began introducing characters with no Legionnaire counterparts. New Guardsmen corresponding to the LSH would not be introduced until the 1990s' Avengers crossover "Operation: Galactic Storm". Kree guardsman Commando's real name is M-Nell; a nod to LSH member Mon-El.

My "What If?" question is whether there's an Imperial Guard team on Earth-712. If so, then did Hyperion encounter the Imperial Guard when he was a less experienced adventurer (the Wiki entry describes him as an Eternal, so I'm not sure if he would have had adventures as a young boy)? Or perhaps Earth-712's Gladiator met Hyperion as a young man? Did Hyperion travel to the Shi'ar empire and have adventures there?

There just seems to be lots of room there for play. Much in the way that was done with Sentry in their Age of the Sentry miniseries.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Will review for free stuff!!

I'd just like to say that if anyone wants to send free stuff my way for review, I'd have to tell everyone about it.


Books. External hard drives. New iPhone apps. Comics. Video games.




Thursday, October 1, 2009

Scary Dark Knight

Sometimes I wonder if Batman has become too familiar to scare people anymore.

Then I saw this:

That design just gives me the willies! Even if I were on the Justice League, that look would make me stand on the other side of the room from him!

Found on the Internet!

The Composite Man!

Surely, one of the most stunning characters of the Silver Age is the Composite Superman. The Absorbascon has an excellent article here.

Well, in poking around, much to my surprise, I've found that there were multiple composite characters. I'll be taking a look at some and posting their images as I find them. In the meantime, here's an image of the Composite Legionnaire:

Free SF - Leigh Brackett

Via Wikipedia:
Leigh Douglass Brackett (December 7, 1915 – March 18, 1978) was an American author, particularly of science fiction. She was also a screenwriter, known for her work on famous films such as The Big Sleep (1945), Rio Bravo (1959), The Long Goodbye (1973) and The Empire Strikes Back (1980).

Pictured above with her husband, Edmund Hamilton.

Free SF has links to some of her free works on the web. Some appear to be teasers for complete volumes for purchase. Her work is definitely worth exploring. I came across her work in a couple of paperback collections of her short stories. I felt her Mars stories to be amazing, surpassing some of Edgar Rice Burroughs' work in their evocation of mood and loss and decay in the Martian environment. Wikipedia has a wonderful article about her unique solar system she had created to house her stories. Truly, a delightful playland of adventure worth re-exploring.

Free SF even has a link to the script for The Big Sleep, a screenplay she worked on with Jules Furthman and William Faulkner.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Rainbow envy

Over at the Weekly Crisis, they complain about the latest member of the Hulk Family: Red She-Hulk!

I dunno. I think Mort Weisinger would've face-palmed Joe Quesada for not coming up with it earlier. (Heck, he would've face-palmed anybody within arms' reach for not coming up with it sooner!) One thing I grudgingly respect Mr. Weisinger for is how he made sure to wring as much mileage out of a concept so that no one else would come up with their own version of a character or concept. I think that's one of the reasons behind all of the different Lanterns nowadays. It might seem a bit silly to some fanboys, but in lieu of any genuinely new characters being created by the Big Two this is the sort of thing we'll probably see more of in the future.

I mean, really. What new characters have been created by the Big Two that wasn't a re-invention of an old character or wasn't already tied in with another existing character? It's the Silver Age all over again! Captain America's showing signs of growing a family. Ben Reilly looks to be returning in Spider-Man and Spider-Woman is getting the push as the next big thing. Iron Fist did some sneaky franchise growth recently by flying under the radar. I wonder which character will be franchised next. Ghost Rider? Punisher? Green Goblin? Aztek? Blue Devil? Gorilla Grodd? Stay tuned, true believers!

Unified Superman Theory

Man, I'm just digging lots of the stories posted on io9 today...

They discuss a post that attempts to explain the Man of Steel's powerset.

In my head, I kinda subscribed to the "psychic Superman" explanation for his powers. This could fit in as well. I'll have to read it in more detail... The comments section is fun to read and even touches on the whole Clark Kent disguise thing.

Oh. And io9 links to clips of the new Superman/Batman video release. There. That should help boost their traffic.

This sounds... FANTASTIC!!!!

io9 wonders about what the increase in Cosmic Ray activity can mean.

Don't those guys read any comics?

Perhaps I can steal... I mean, borrow these plans...

... for a Power Loader suit!

Perhaps I can use these Power Loaders to lob SUVs at those blasted seasickness cannons... Hmmm....

Drat! They're onto me!!

The Department of Homeland Security has discovered my one weakness, darn them!

A seasickness gun!

My army of clones will surely be devastated by this development! Must rethink my plans...

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Mimsy Were the Borogroves

As a former web developer, Free SF Reader can be a horrific site with poor navigation and rollovers which make me afraid to use my mouse.

As a sci-fi fan, the poor site design can be overlooked for the free treasure within!

Cases in point:
1) Mimsy Were the Borogroves by Henry Kuttner and his wife, C.L. Moore
Follow the link to hear part 1 of an audio recording of this amazing story as read by William Shatner.
2) An essay by Amy H. Sturgis, discussing possible reasons for the continued interest in the works of H.P. Lovecraft and J.R.R. Tolkien.

Marvel Apes

Just picked up the Marvel hardcover collection for the Marvel Apes miniseries. (I picked it up at a step discount at the New York Anime Festival! More on that later...) At first I was a bit skeptical, maybe because I judged the book by its cover. (Truly, that cover didn't do anything for me.) Now that I'm reading it, I've found that it's quite the hoot! Truly a lot of fun! Since this collection only reprinted the mini-series and a few other bits and pieces, I'll have to scour the back-issue bins to find some of the one-shots that have been published since then...

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Superboy and the two Wizards of Oz

When I saw that title at the Newsarama Blog, I thought we were in for an exciting story from Superman's past!

Imagine my disappointment when it was more ruminations on the Siegel case. Mind you, I think the heirs of Siegel and Schuster deserve all the money they can get, but I thought DC was finally going to do a neat story starring the Boy of Steel.

Sure would've been fun. I would want Eric Shanower to be involved in some way. If he writes, I'd try to get Stuart Immonen for the art chores. Publish it in a nice tabloid-sized edition that's very bookstore friendly. Something special...

There's gotta be some term...

...for when a character is "IRREVOCABLY CHANGED!" so that "NOTHING IS THE SAME!" as the status quo is changed to garner some interest. Kinda like Wolverine in the Fatal Attractions storyline, but then the creative teams just sort of leave the character in that screwed up state without returning the character to their original state or moving them on and having them grow.

Like Cyborg when he became Cyberion. ("Cyberion?" WTF?) Or Barbara Gordon after she'd been shot by the Joker. In these two instances the characters "got better", but what about those characters still sitting in limbo waiting for someone to remember them? Like Alpha Flight?

It reminds me of the Sid character from Toy Story. Via Wikipedia:
Sid Phillips is a hyperactive, ten-year-old boy and the main villain of the first film. He was Andy's vicious neighbour (until Andy moved), and the worst nightmare any toy could have. Sid is a young, bratty skate punk with metal braces, whose idea of fun is terrorizing his sister and destroying toys in various methods (exploding, burning or in his "mad doctor" plays). He also enjoys skateboarding. He is voiced by Erik von Detten. According to an interview, Sid is named after a former employee at Pixar who would take toys apart and sometimes rebuild them in different and disturbingly odd ways.

Maybe that's it. When a character's been messed up, when they were used as cannon fodder to show how dangerous a threat was, when they were pulled and stretched and twisted so no one recognizes them, and the marketing and licensing people are left shaking their heads wondering "How are we going to sell action figures of that?" and there don't seem to be any positive changes coming anytime soon, I'll say "Sid got 'em".

So... Alpha Flight? "Sid got 'em."
Aquaman? "Sid got 'im."

That works for me...

The Secret Book of Jung

Now this is a book worth picking up.

If it ever comes out.

The animated version would be awesome!!

Character worth saving from oblivion: Tyrannus

According to Wikipedia:
In the Roman Empire, Tyrannus claims to be a "sorcerer", but is actually a scientist far ahead of his time. He was exiled by Merlin to Subterranea, a network of caves and tunnels miles beneath the Earth's surface. There Tyrannus discovers a race of orange-skinned semi-humanoid Subterraneans who are eager to find in him a new master to serve. He also discovers a pool of liquid which he drinks to maintain his youth through the centuries. The Subterraneans acquaint Tyrannus with examples and records of technology designed by the Deviants who were their original masters. Tyrannus' scientific genius enables him to master and improve upon the Deviants' scientific wonders over the centuries. Tyrannus becomes Emperor of the Tyrannoid Subterraneans, and an aspiring conqueror.

In the modern era, Tyrannus is finally ready to use this technology and the Subterraneans in conquering the surface world. Tyrannus makes several attempts at conquering the surface world as well as fighting wars against the forces of a new arrival in Subterranea, the Mole Man.

Here's a character who's lived for thousands of years, belonged to shadowy conspiracies (which existed long before The Illuminati and The Cabal) that manipulated events behind the scenes, and controlled an army of little dudes that look like The Greys.

Truly, if there was ever a character with untapped possibilities for some nice conspiracy stories, here he is. Take him out of his quaint Roman uniform, add a touch of The Count of St. Germain, add some UFO conspiracies, and take him as seriously as the X-Men creators (Chris Claremont, Dave Cockrum and John Byrne) took Magneto seriously, and you've got a character who could be as cool as Ra's al Ghul. It's not like it would take much to give him a makeover, just a reassessment of and commitment to what's already there.

Spooky Ooky...

Xenophilia links to an article, but offers quotes, on the Roswell crash and how it was, indeed, an alien spacecraft.

Well, at least, that someone was told it was a crashed alien spacecraft...

(Really, I just wanted to include the cool picture above. I've had dreams where I've encountered beings like the one in the black and white photograph. I just wanted to show you what they looked like.)

Scott McCloud brings back memories...

I was a bit old when the silent G.I.Joe issue Scott McCloud discusses came out. I think I must've been in high school when the TV show was on so I didn't get bitten by the "Go Joe!" bug. I knew about G.I.Joe and had picked up a couple of issues -- I liked the faux HYDRA-esque COBRA, but the military action hero thing didn't float my boat.

Now, ninjas I could dig.

With that cover, I think I'd guessed at the time that Larry Hama was trying to bring some of that ninja magic Frank Miller had woven into Daredevil I think I thought it was a good issue. Enough to buy it anyway.

But I'd been exposed to special comic storytelling issues by that time... by that time I'd started collecting Kitchen Sink's Spirit reprints, and I'd seen new storytelling possibilities in a reprint volume of Archie Goodwin and Walt Simonson's Manhunter. Plus in Goodwin and Simonson's work on the Alien and Close Encounters of the Third Kind adaptations, I'd been exposed to the power of caption-less and dialogue-less storytelling. Still, it's nice to see in Shaenon Garitty's appreciation how one book made a difference for someone younger than me and in their appreciation of sequential storytelling.

Mighty Mutant Forbears

It's always fun while reading a book to be pointed in a new direction of exploration.

To wit: I was reading TwoMorrows' fun Marvel Comics in the 1960s, and I'd just gotten to the article describing the introduction of The Uncanny X-Men, when Pierre Comtois points to mutants being a staple of science fiction. He specifically cites two books: A.E. van Vogt's Slan (which is not unusual since everyone seems to point to that classic when discussing mutants) and Henry Kuttner's Mutant. Since I hadn't heard about this last one, it was off to the Internet!

Here's what I found at Free SF Reader:
In this book by Henry Kuttner from the 1950s, homo superior has arrived, and again, they are in hiding. The book contains several pieces about this new race, and they are telepathic. It deals more with their problems, and what it is like to be a telepath, or what it is like to have problems with these abilities when you have been telepathic before, and that sort of thing, compared to the more action oriented approach of Van Vogt, for example.

There is some conflict between the various political groups within the telepaths, and the overall story is told from the point of view of one of the last survivors of the early days, after he has crash landed in bad weather.

Free SF Reader also features a handy Wowio link so you can check the stories out for free. Amazon also has a Kindle edition, for those of you living in the 22nd Century.

But poking around a bit more, I discovered that Henry Kuttner had written other books worth investigating, including stories about pulp hero Thunder Jim Wade. Never heard of him? Well, neither had I! But it's available at Amazon!

According to Wikipedia, Henry Kuttner was admired by professionals like Marion Zimmer Bradley, Ray Bradbury and Roger Zelazny. Mr. Kuttner also corresponded with H.P. Lovecraft, and wrote several stories that added to the Cthulu Mythos. Certainly, a man worth further study...

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Floating Heads of Marvel Comics!

Again from Comic Coverage, an appreciation of the unique Marvel cover design, floating heads.

Mighty Marvel Monsters

Just found this over at Comics Coverage. Of course I discover this only after Mark Engblom announces he won't be blogging anymore!

I always seem to find these really cool blogs after they've ended.

I betcha if there is a Rapture, I'll find out about it long after it happens...

Thursday, September 17, 2009

...but will he use his powers for good or for evil?

Wow. This is kinda like the gadget that Pyro (the comic book version, not the movie one) uses. Suddenly the idea of a teenage kid inventing web-shooters to fight crime and swing from building to building doesn't seem so implausible anymore.

At least that one works. This movie, which purports to show you how to create hover shoes, is not as credible. I don't think The Wizard has anything to worry about.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Speaking of Morbius...

...I was looking for images of Morbius recently (getting ready for Halloween I suppose) and noticed that all of his images have him depicted with his mouth open. Now, I know he's a vampire, which means the artist is obligated to remind the reader of that by showing Morbius with a mouth full of teeth.

It just made me wonder... with that smashed-in nose, could he have some respiratory issues which force him to breathe through his mouth? Is he, as Garrison Keillor might suggest, a mouth breather? This might add a bit of poignancy to the character, where his affliction has turned a Nobel Prize-winning scientist into a mouth-breathing monster. Kind of like a pulp monster reverse version of Flowers for Algernon.

Just something to think about...

Even CNN is getting in on it!

CNN tries to prognosticate as to what properties Disney might be interested in as they run a slideshow on Marvel's next 5 superheroes. CNN's candidates: Sub-Mariner, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, Doctor Strange and Morbius.

Morbius? Are they kidding? Morbius might be a contender for one of the villains in Spider-Man 4 as stated here, so I don't know whether CNN is basing this on actual development info or if they asked Karl in the copy room what he'd like to see. I suspect something along the lines of the latter.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Public Domain Heroes!

There's now a Wikia which lists superhero characters now in the public domain!


I'm tempted to throw in a joke about this but it's too late and it's time for me to go to bed. Maybe some other time...

I'm only mentioning this one once...

...because it's a secret, but I'm splitting off my showcase of characters I've created to a separate blog: The Mighty M4!!

Why "The Mighty M4!!"?
a) For "Mighty Man and Monster Maker"! Poser and DAZ Studio are like the 21st Century versions of that famous toy. Plus if I learn zBrush like I hope to, I can make more mighty men and monsters! But we'll see how that goes...
b) I wanted a separate place to show my characters. I didn't really want to throw a whole bunch of these pictures up on deviantArt or any of the other sites.
c) For now I want to use this here blog as a catch-all for all sorts of weird and fun stuff, and I was afraid my characters would get lost in the mix.

Anyway, head on over and check it out. No more shall be said about this...

This one spooked my wife...

I came across a link to this story from Unknown Country. There's an accompanying video which has gotta be seen to be believed!

After my wife watched the video, we had a long discussion over whether or not the creature (if it was real and not made in some special effects shop) could really be classified as an alien or not. We reasoned that even though it didn't look human, that didn't mean it came from another planet. Afterwards, it made me realize how watching and reading lots of sci-fi and fantasy might make contact with non-human beings easier to grasp and contemplate.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Again, with the WOW envy...

Over at, there's an announcement of a new version of the WOW Modelviewer.

When I was playing COH, I found out about this and instantly saw its possibilities for creating comics and machinima. So of course I posted on the COH message boards about something like it being available for CO*. No one else seemed to share my interest as they only kept going on about the CO* EULA. How about an official dev-created version, I asked? Nope, nothing more than declaring I was pipedreaming with more reminders of firm statements about the EULA.

It was one of the many times I felt like CO* would be stuck in a dead end if it was being run by people who posted on the forums.

Not dead yet...

Now that the sidekicks are in school, I have my computer back!

Only one more year and one more sidekick left before I'm left alone at home during the day. Then... surely, there will come a cleaning!!

...because this last little sidekick tries to help with the care and cleaning of the secret lair. It's tough cleaning the giant robot dinosaur if she keeps activating its controls. Sheesh!! Do you know how hard it's going to be to get those burn marks out of the floor?

Friday, August 21, 2009

Time to welcome... DOC OPTIK!!

Time to say adieu to Champions Online characters Frostmane and Lasy Sting (sic! Yes, I know! I misspelled my character's name!) as their Closed Beta personas went the way of Doc Mentat before them.

Time to say hello to Doc Optik, the hero with the eye-based powers!

Here we have Defender, offering tips to the new hero on the block:

Funny thing... my screen captures don't seem to grab any of the particle effects depicted in-game. No glowy zaps...

The Power of SHAZAM!!

...once again stymies Hollywood! Topless Robot has their own take.

John August has a telling quote:
I chatted with one of the "Shazam!" producers, Michael E. Uslan, and he told me even then that any Captain Marvel movie's great challenge would be answering one question: If you were a little kid who could turn into an all-powerful, handsome adult, why on Earth would you ever change back?

Wow. It sounds like someone in Hollywood had a rotten childhood and can't imagine why they'd go through being a youngster all over again. The Howling Curmudgeons offer their own take on Mr. Uslan's reasoning.

To me, Captain Marvel is an easy concept: a young decent optimistic kid, powerless in his normal circumstances, changes into a decent, optimistic superhero (think Christoper Reeve's Superman) to have adventures and to stop bad guys adults seem powerless to stop. There could be a bit of satire (as in Jeff Smith's version) showing adults as kind of... dopey or blind or too willing to give up their power to think for themselves or living in fear to do the right thing. Plus it could be about using imagination, which seems to be a thing stamped out of "normal" adults. These are not themes foreign to Hollywood movies, it's just that trying to apply them while trying to duplicate or surpass the success of "The Dark Knight" may not produce a movie most people will want to watch.

A good Captain Marvel movie would be closer in spirit and tone to something released by Pixar, something with heart and adventure. It's tough imagining "The Incredibles" or "Up" in a "Dark Knight" mold but I think that's the weird knot that's keeping the movie from being made.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Verminator Pejorative

I'll probably load this up to one of my galleries, but it's kinda late and I'm tired...

Playing around a bit with the Sixus1 Vermin set. Added a couple of giant rat monster pets. I should probably add some bats or something too.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

WOW Envy. Again.

I know I should probably just play World of Warcraft and stop wallowing in envy. But then I see how I barely play during the Champions Online Beta even though it's free, and I have a tough time justifying the monthly fee.

But one thing I've noticed is the active online community I see surrounding WOW.

Compare that to the listing of fan sites at the COH website. It's kinda depressing how many of the websites haven't been updated since 2005. Sheesh! One blog I do follow is Blog of Heroes, and even the owner's starting to look over to see what Champions Online is up to.

Meanwhile, sites like keep fans appraised of new developments and geekery surrounding WOW.

Does anyone know of any sites that are still interested in COH enough to keep up with news, developments, and fan-related activity?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Why do I blog?

Because I have all these thoughts in my head.

Because I can illustrate my thoughts with pictures from around the web.

Because when I try to share these thoughts with family and friends, their eyes just roll into their heads in boredom or because I lost them as soon as I opened my mouth.

Save them from Oblivion: The Royal Flush Gang

This one's a weird one so bear with me...

The Royal Flush Gang was created during Julie Schwartz's editorship of the Justice League. As such, when fans like Len Wein and Gerry Conway started writing for the JLA, the characters seemed stuck in a strange nostalgic mode that seemed to revere the characters but didn't know exactly what to do with them. As such, they would appear in one issue to bedevil the JLA before being sent back to jail in that same issue.

No real challenge. Bizarre in appearance, with costumes George Perez was born to draw, they seemed more like a distraction than a real threat.

At least until they started appearing in Batman Beyond and other DC Animated shows.

Maybe with their bizarre appearance and modus operandi, they're tailor made for television. Maybe the current DCU is too grim to marvel at people dressed up like card characters with fantastic gadgets. I dunno.

Personally, I hope the Royal Flush Gang show up in the DCUO MMO.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

...but will there be a sequel?

Roger Ebert layeth down the smack, but still claims it was better than Transformers 2.

You know what bugged me most about the previews (which made me wish ill upon the movie) for G.I.Joe? How they went 9/11 on the Eiffel Tower.

I swear.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

I confess...

This cover image makes me want to read the story. However...

1) An "Electronic Date-Matcher"? What, is Superman behind

2) Why does Supergirl look like Lauren Bacall?

Via DC Comics, 40 Years Ago...

You know, looking at that face on Superman, maybe he's just being jerk again.

Seriously, I wonder if someone like Grant Morrison should write a story that exorcises this aspect of Superman into a separate entity. Kind of like the Commie-bashing Captain America of the 1950's was made into a separate and unique character who was different from the "real" Steve Rogers.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Little Idi Snitmin

The name comes from an old issue of Dragon magazine. Snitmin was (if memory serves correctly) a Kobold who led a group of his people on pesky raids and such; I think he was supposed to have stolen a set of Rings of Flight, which he and his band used on their raids. The name stuck in my head because when I came up with this little goblin, that was the name I used for the file.

Anyway, I posted copies at each of my Gallery sites, but here's a copy with some added text and a new border to give it more of a comic panel feel. Just an experiment with typefaces and line proportions, or something more...?

What's going to happen to Marvelman?

Yes, yes, da Internetz is all abuzz over Marvel's acquisition of Marvelman. Everyone is speculating over whether Alan Moore and Neil Gaiman's stories will now see print (or re-printing, as it were), whether we'll get to see Neil Gaiman's final storyline which was never published, whether Alan Moore will send a pox down upon the American comics industry, what DC might do since Marvelman is a direct copy of Captain Marvel, and on into infinity...

I'm left wondering what Marvel will actually do with the character.

See, if DC had acquired the character (which would have been a mighty interesting turn of events!), they might have re-published the original stories in some great big Absolute edition with new coloring and such, finally published the remaining storylines, printed any number of limited series and such, and, lastly, found some way to integrate some version of the Marvelman Universe into their DC Universe cosmology. Earth 16 or something would have become the world of the Marvelman Family and there might have been crossovers with the Justice League. Or the whole Marvelman Family will suddenly appear in England and there might have been crossovers with the Justice League and the Marvel Family. Or some other such thing.

But Marvel... what're they going to do?

Create some alternate dimension, like the Ultimate Universe or the Marvel Zombie Universe?

Have some sort of Golden Age/Silver Age back story like they did with The Sentry and The Blue Marvel and integrate them into the current Marvel Universe?

Introduce Marvelman to the current Marvel universe with a crossover story starring Captain Britain?

Create a line of stories in the Marvel Adventures books to introduce Marvelman to kids?

Have Kurt Busiek write up a big crossover story involving the Avengers, the Squadron Supreme, the Grandmaster and the Marvelman family?

I'm kinda convinced that Marvel as a company is now old enough to be at the Silver Age stage that DC was years ago. Older characters, like Thor, Captain America/Bucky, and Spider-Man (with the Brand New Day stories), have been re-introduced for new readers much like the Flash and Green Lantern were introduced to new readers in the 1950's. Spider-Man, their flagship character, has his share of storylines (Clone Saga, One More Day) that some readers would like to forget much like Superman and Batman did during the 50's. I'm sure there are other analogies, but those are the ones that come to mind.

One thing that Marvel is new at is acquiring licenses of existing characters formerly owned by other companies, and doing something interesting with them. For example, in the 90's Marvel acquired Malibu Comics, but let those characters disappear from the minds of readers everywhere. Here, however, Marvel's got a brand new toy to play with.

Just what are they going to do with this new toy, I wonder?

Friday, July 31, 2009