31 January 2009

Friday Night Fights: KA-POW!! round 12


To close up the final round of this bout, here's Superman punching a gorilla courtesy of E. Nelson Birdwell, Ramona Fradon & Bob Smith.



From DC GOES APE (2008)

28 January 2009

What The Hell? I'm Reading Ghost Rider Now?



Shocking as it may be but I've never been a huge fan of Ghost Rider. I remember reading a few issues back in the '70s and I also read the few issues of the 1990s revamp with Danny Ketch. Don't remember much about that one except that the first issue had a glow-in-the-dark cover. Ahh, the 90s.

I say shocking because Ghost Rider has everything I want in a superhero comic book. It's full of crazy stupid. It's a guy in leather riding a motorcycle with fiery wheels. Oh and his head is also on fire. And it's a skull. And he goes around punching people in the name of vengeance. He was even a member of a super group once. Seriously, what's not to like? But Ghost Rider never did it for me, so when Marvel gave GR yet another series, I hardly noticed it until new writer Jason Aaron took over with issue #20, collected in this trade. Johnny Blaze is back as the Ghost Rider (Danny Ketch is back too. I thought they killed him off. Oh well) and he wants revenge on the rogue angel what did this to him. Yes, Ghost Rider's origin has been retconned. The Spirit of Vengeance was bonded to the soul of an ex-circus motorcycle stuntman because the stuntman wanted to save his dying father. Turns out the Spirit wasn't the devil's idea, it was Zadkiel's, a rogue angel. Kinda makes sense I suppose. After all why would the devil turn one of his suckers into a Spirit of Vengeance meting out justice to evil people? Vengeance, hell. The devil would probably give the evildoer a pat on the back, a cigar and his or her choice of a fiery duplex in Hades. But Johnny Blaze is still out of luck because he did make a deal with the devil, damned his soul to Hell anyway and still has to do Heaven's dirty work by hunting down the guilty. So yeah, Blaze is pissed off with everyone especially Zadkiel the rogue angel. But Zadkiel has a plan of his own. He needs the Spirit of Vengeance to overthrow God so he can sit on the Throne of Heaven himself. Yes, really.

So that is Jason Aaron's take on Ghost Rider in a nutshell. It's all about Johnny Blaze finding a way to reach Zadkiel and kick his arse while Zadkiel sends his groupies to capture Johnny alive so they can use his powers to defeat God. And Zadkiel followers come in many shape and sizes, including:


Over zealous, psychotic nurses with automatic weapons riding motorcycles! It's like Jason Aaron looked into my mind and took notes!

Not only that but both the Ghost Rider and the sexy psycho nurses have to deal with a highway haunted by cannibalistic ghosts and it doesn't end well for some:


Bye-bye, sexy, psychotic nurse who wants to help overthrow God

The second half of the trade sees Johnny in a middle of a prison riot and he's looking for a convicted priest who made a deal with a Satanist group in prison to protect himself from Zadkiel and his assassins. That's just crazy and awesome at the same time. Ghost Rider gets out of this one by pummelling the bad guy with an over sized edition of the Bible. Irony in comic books. Who woulda thunk it?

I think as long as Jason Aaron is writing Ghost Rider, I'll be along for the ride.

27 January 2009

The Incredible Hulk....


hates getting wet


Hulk receives an impromptu shower in HULK Annual 7 (1978) by Stern, Byrne & Layton, collected in Giant-Size Hulk (2008)

26 January 2009

Short Reviews: Batman: Private Casebook, X-O Manowar: Birth


Paul Dini's run on Detective continues to be collected and this time DC went with a hardcover edition first, those bastards! I prefer my books to be in hardcover but the first two collections were in paperback so it's gonna look weird on the shelf. I'm anal like that.

Anyway, Paul Dini continues his hard on for Zatanna, pitting her against the new Ventriloquist who gets an origin story. Other stories include a nice one with Mad Hatter, a Riddler-thinks-he's-smarter-than-Batman-at-solving-crimes story and Batman kicks Ra's Al Ghul's arse in an epilogue of the Ra's ressurrection storyline. Nothing to write home about but a nice collection to add if you already have the previous Dini Detective collections.



Collects the first six issues of X-O Manowar and issue #0. I heard that Manowar sold like crazy numbers at its height. God knows how because the issues collected here didn't do anything for me. They had six issues to rock me and I stopped reading after issue 3. Pity because a 2000-year old barbarian in an Iron Man suit should be a one hell of a comic. How the hell did they mess that up? X-O Manowar is not for me, I guess.

20 January 2009

G.I. JOE #57 (Marvel, 1987)



Check out that cover. Flint looks constipated, Lady Jaye is there so that kids would look at her impressive cleavage and pick up the book (hey, it worked with me) and Destro just looks ridiculous. This guy wants to be taken seriously as a feared terrorist and arms supplier? Then lose the tall collar and plunging neckline. Even in 1987 that look was a joke. And the medallion? Very chic...in 1975!!

There was nothing special about this issue. In fact, 14-year old me thought it was kinda boring. Issue 57 sees Destro going back to Scotland after tunnelling his way out of 'The PIT', the secret G.I. Joe HQ underneath the Staten Island Motor Pool, which had caved in after Cobra's failed attempt to eliminate the Joes on their home turf. Cobra Commander was with him as well but went their separate ways after they escaped from the PIT and CC tried to make amends with his crippled and blind-in-one-eye son Billy (but that's another issue).

In this issue, Destro goes back home only to find that there is already a Destro having tea and scones with the household guards at the family castle. Real Destro gets arrested, breaks out of jail with the help of Joes' Lady Jaye and Flint, goes back to the castle and has a good punch up with fake Destro ("How do we know which one's the real Destro?", one of the castle guards asked. "Let those two fight. Whoever wins must be the real one", suggests his comrade. As opposed to, say...asking the Lord Destro to take off his mask and see his face and compare it with the family potraits? Or do the male Destros wear masks right from infancy and all the family photos have them wearing masks as well? Gee, that's one screwed up family. Life must be hell for young Destro at school. No wonder he became a terrorist.)

Anyway, real Destro wins and pulls off the mask off fake Destro to reveal...
Major Bludd?? I think Larry Hama received a memo from Hasbro the month before asking why he rarely uses Bludd in the comics. So here he is for one panel. Oh, and the reason Lady Jaye and Flint was on Destro's side was because they wanted to steal the plans to Cobra's Terror Drome but since they helped Destro reclaim his castle from Cobra, Destro gave it to them free of charge. How nice of him.

Yeah, not a very memorable issue. But check out that cover. Makes me laugh everytime I see it.

19 January 2009

The Awesomeness of Tintin vs. a Pissed Captain Haddock




Astronaut Tintin takes no crap from no one. Least of all a drunk sea captain.


Tintin and the Captain's shouting match whilst tethered to a rocket travelling to the moon at 7 miles per second is from Explorers on the Moon (1954) by Herge, who else?

15 January 2009

wikiHow's How To Be A Comic Book Genius



How to Become a Comic Book Genius


from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

This if you want to impress people with your comic book expertise.

Steps


  1. Buy Marvel Encyclopedias Volumes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 (3 is the best skip it)and read them.
  2. Buy the D.C. Comics Encyclopedia and read it
  3. Start reading tpb(trade paper backs)Big ones like Watchmen, Kingdom Come, Crisis on Infinite Earths, Infinite Crisis, the Essential tpbs by Marvel,also the D.K. Ultimate Guides (they have one on nearly every hero Marvel and D.C.)
  4. Subscribe to Wizard this magazine is a must have
  5. Read Comics and Graphic Novels at your library (mine has monthly issues and huge variety of hardcovers and tpbs)
  6. Read mini series such as Civil War or 52 (these will change quite often)


Tips


  • Get on the forums
  • Research things you don't know about on the internet
  • Try not to get obsessed with one publication read indie publishers like Image, Dark Horse and Top Cow
  • If you hate reading don't try to read comics


Warnings




Related wikiHows





Article provided by wikiHow, a wiki how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Become a Comic Book Genius. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.




So, in order to become a comic book genius, one needs to read the Marvel Encyclopedias but skip volume 3 because "it's the best". Subscribing to Wizard is a must 'cause the Wizard guys know all about comics and shit. Also, "if you hate reading, don't try to read comics". Now I take issue with that. The comic medium, I think, is a good way to instill a love to read. All those pictures won't tax your brain too much. But then again I find it hard to comprehend how anyone can actually dislike reading. But that's just me.

I love how the author(s) of that article warn us not to be a Marvel Zombie. Because y'know, that would be bad
.

12 January 2009

09 January 2009

Friday Night Fights: KA-POW!! round 9



From All-New Atom #17 by Simone, Norton & Scott. First published on Jan. '08 so it qualifies under Spacebooger rules. But only just.

08 January 2009

What I Just Read: Atomic Robo vol. 1 (Red 5, 2008)


ATOMIC ROBO and the FIGHTIN' SCIENTISTS OF TESLADYNE: This trade from Canadian publishing upstart RED 5 collects the first six issues featuring the titular character and his team of gung ho boffins who are members of a paramilitary unit tasked to solve weird problems. And it's funny too. Think Hellboy with a little bit more one liners.

It's a good thing that writer Brian Clevinger can write the funny because these first six issues confused me a little bit with all the flashbacks. The humour distracted me somewhat from the jumping timelines and I just went with the flow. The story opens up in 1938 with Robo foiling a Nazi scientist from taking over the world (what else?), then jumps to the present, then shifts to 1940 China then back to the present and then to 1974 where we see the late Dr. Carl Sagan offering Robo a trip to Mars and then back to present-day Egypt where Atomic Robo and his team has to stop a mobile 5,000 year old pyramid from destorying Luxor with sunbeams and then that story just ends there when we are brought back to 2005 Italy. Or maybe that pyramid story was supposed to end there? But I wanna know how they defeated the giant mechanical cycloptic mummy, dammit! You have 22 pages of mayhem just waiting to be written right there!

So yeah...I found the jumping around a bit dizzying but not much. I enjoyed it enough. If you like comic books that feature a talking 83 year old robot, Nazi cyborgs, undead mummies, commandos with Phds and a pyramid that moves (and really, who doesn't like all that in their comic books?) then this collection is a keeper.

05 January 2009

A Confession


Today instead of working, I spent most of the time at the office reading Marvel's Secret Wars Omnibus. It was good. It brought back memories of simpler times and simpler adventures in my comic books. No twists, no anti-life equation, no Skrulls. Just good guys on one side, the bad guys on the other. They fight for 12 issues!

And it had one of the best covers ever:



Sure beats catching up on my paperwork.

02 January 2009

Friday Night Fights: KA-POW!! round 8


Aaannnd DGR's back at the ring after missing the last few weeks worth of fights. Everyone else at Spacebooger.com stand aside because our contender is no pretender. He's the one and only Peter Parker, the Amazing Spider-man!...and he's beating up a shark tonight! (again with the sharks!)

It's ASM #313, written by David Michelinie with art by Todd "I'm better than all of youse punks" McFarlane and it's an INFERNO tie-in. Pete and Mary Jane find themselves attacked by a damn big shark while riding a cab on their way to Queens. No big deal for ol' Pete. He's gone up against
The Spot, a shark should be child's play for him.

And indeed it is:


But it wasn't over yet for Spidey. Next, he had to bring down a possessed giant balloon of himself...
Well, that must have been embarrassing.

But you can't keep a good Spider-man down for long...


All this and he had to fight the Lizard as well. ASM #313 was one crazy awesome of a comic and David Michelinie wrote it all with a married Peter Parker as well.

01 January 2009

The Awesomeness of Tintin vs. a Shark

First, there is the submarine shaped like a shark designed by the deaf-as-a-post Professor Calculus (who makes his first appearance in Red Rackham's Treasure):



But also, there is the scene where Tintin goes treasure hunting underwater and gets attacked by a shark:





He downs the shark by making him drunk (it was clear he really wanted to strike the shark's nose with the bottle, but still awesome). Batman would've just kicked the fish. Effective but oh, so pedestrian.

Oh yeah, Happy 2009!