Saturday, May 28, 2016

Superhero Cakes

So, I was in Dunkin’ Donuts today, and I noticed that DD is offering a quartet of superhero-themed cakes, two featuring Spider-Man



And a pair featuring Batman.



So, I'm thinking that with Father’s Day and My Birthday both still happen this year, Someone is going to deserve a couple of Spidey Cakes soon.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Seriously, You call this writing?

OK, so I realize that today everyone is either talking about DC Rebirth or the fact that (apparently) Captain America has been an agent of Hydra all these decades since his inception, but personally, I'm still stuck on this issue of Batman 52 (which frankly I'm still not entirely sure is Batman from the New 52, Batman #52 or simply Batman 52 (the indicia wasn't all that clear to me).

In any event, it really doesn't actually matter, because with the frequency with which comicbook series are rebooted, renumbered, and reimagined, none of that (unfortunately) really has no actual value — in fact we’re really surprised that comicbook companies don’t simply kjust call a spade a spade and call each and every comic published issue #1 — but, like peter David, I digress.

Leaving that all behind for the time being, we’d like to focus on the story, only there really doesn’t appear to be much of one in this issue, because what we have is yet another re-telling of the origin of Batman. The frequency of which comicbooks are rebooted and origins retold, it is no wonder why every time there is a film made about one of our four-color heroes that the filmmakers feel that they need to include an origin story.

Well, at any rate, the story involves a thief named Crypsis who has a hi-tech suit that allows him to phase through walls. turns out that Crypsis is looking to steal something of immense value belonging to Bruce Wayne, so Crypsis  breaks into some guy’s office to steal a key that is to the safety deposit box where this item is stored. So, Crypsis breaks into the guy’s place, steals the key, then breaks into the bank, and uses the key to open the box to steal the item; which then sets up the fight between him and Batman.

We really just have one question. If the suit allows Crypsis to phase through walls, then why did he need the key? Couldn’t he just have phased through the safety deposit box? We call this bad writing.

Want to know what else we call bad writing? This week on Arrow was the final showdown between Green Arrow (Stephen Amell) and (Neal McDonough) — no, we’re not going to give away any spoilers — during the confrontation, Green Arrow fires an arrow at Darhk winging him, and putting a nice scar on his cheek. Now while we don't quite understand how the greatest marksman in the world could miss a stationary target standing like 20' in front of him, but the story never addresses that standing like 20' behind Darhk, there is a tightly-packed mob of civilians and the arrow apparently didn’t hit any of them either.


Next Arrow’s superhero friends show up to help and Darhk calls upon his own hoard of minions and a great big brawl erupts, which is interesting because every other time this goon squad shows up they were touting automatic weapons, which makes you wonder why they didn’t bring their this time as well.

Again, bad writing. There’s more in this episode, but we’re already exhausted, so we’ll leave it at that for now.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Munster Memories

Back in 2014 I contributed to Butch Patrick's coffee table book, Munster Memories. Well, just today I finally got my contributor's copy to the book (Thanks, Rich!). 

Butch Patrick's "Coffin Table" book




Here you can see my name in the credits and as author of the two articles that I penned.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Batman V Superman: a different (Humorous) view

OK kids, I already posted my review of Batman V Superman (over here) but apparently I wasn't the only one who weighed in on this film (go figure). One of the people who reviewed the film was Peter K. Rosenthal from the satirical website, The Onion. I note his review because Rosenthal (straight-facedly, but hilariously humorously) compared the fight between these two World’s Finest heroes to the break-up of his parents. Which is not only especially funny, but actually makes sense when you actually examine the film’s name.

Batman v Superman


You see, when two names are juxtapositioned like that (opposite a “v” as opposed to a “vs”  (as in Mad Magazines Spy vs. Spy) it is considered a legal matter (as in a divorce) as opposed to just a fight between two foe-men (Frazier vs Ali). leaving us to assume one of two things:
  1. Director Snyder didn't understand the technical differences between the two uses, or
  2. He really did mean for this to be a legal battle
Hence Rosenthal’s review:


So, yeah, that is actually pretty funny, but then again, so are these two cartoons dealing with the difference between DC and Marvel comicbook fans when movies about their chosen heroes hit the Silver Screen.

I’ve actually had this conversation...



And well, there’s also this:




Friday, March 25, 2016

More Superhero Hot Wheels cars from McDonald’s

OK, we totally checked out the Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice film last night and then today we (once again) headed over to McDonald’s to score some more superhero-themed Hot Wheels toys.


There are two more cars to this set and I hope to score them over the weekend.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Batman Vs Superman: General Mills Edition

OK, we just posted about how the new Batman/Superman film is appearing at McDonald’s with Hot Wheels superhero cars, well it is also appearing in General Mills Cereals with a quartet of pint mini comics. Here re the first two:




OK, now I have issue #3 as well!


Batman vs Superman @ McDonald’s

OK Kids, unless you’ve been living in a Spider hole for the last couple of cycles y’all already know about the big upcoming Batman/Superman slug-fest that is coming up soon enough (Thu, Mar 24). Well, in the meantime while you are still waiting for the film to drop, you can head over to McDonald’s to score some superhero-themed Hot Wheels toys.


The promotion apparently just started, so you should be able to score a full set. Here is what I grabbed up so far.



Here are the four cars I currently have are Flash, Superman, Green Lantern, and Batman


In addition to the Superhero Hot Wheels cars there are Barbies.


So, yeah, I picked up my toys this morning, and grabbed me a Shamrock Shake in the process.

Thursday, March 03, 2016

NYC’s Big Apple Con Returns Saturday March 5, 2016

Well, it looks like this is going to be another great weekend time for comicbook fans in the NY Tri-state area as Mike Carbonaro (“Mike Carbo”) throws yet another of his legendary Big Apple Cons The comicbook show is the longest-running Pop Culture convention in New York City. As usual, the show is happening at Penn Plaza Pavilion (401 7th Ave @ 33rd Street — opposite Madison Square Garden). The show launches Saturday, March 5, 2016 and runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. This show is (as usual) an amazing confluence of comicbooks, Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Horror, and Cosplay (costume play for the uninitiated — where fans dress up as their favorite heroes).

As with most of these types of multi-media, Pop Culture events, the New York Big Apple comicbook show brings together top-flight not only numerous fan-favorite comicbook creators along with media celebrities, but combines them with a metric tonne of vendors all of whom have gathered together in this one location in order to sell unique and interesting items of interest, along with panel discussions each targeting various aspects of comicbook, collectible, and multi-media culture. There will also be a costume contest, as well as many more additional attractions all gathered together in one place for their fans to enjoy. Carbonaro himself assures us that there will not only be hundreds of tables offering comics, toys, posters, videos, original art, t-shirts and other collectibles all available for purchase.


The show also includes a number of special panels and programming that will highlight the 50th anniversary of the Batman TV show, the first appearance of Marvel’s Black Panther (who will be featured in the upcoming Captain America Civil War film), as well as the history of Charlton Comics, Star Wars, plus the Winter Indie Film Awards animated shorts, and NY Jedi.


In addition to the multitude of vendors that will be appearing at this year’s Big Apple Con, the event will also feature a full-to-the-brim Artists Alley of comicbook and trading card creators, including: Jim Steranko (Captain America, Nick Fury: Agent of SHIELD), Neal Adams (Batman, Green Lantern/Green Arrow), Mark Texeira (Wolverine, Ghost Rider), Ramona Fradon (Aquaman, Super Friends), Erik Larsen (Spider-Man, Savage Dragon), Rich Buckler (Fantastic Four, Deathlok), Reilly Brown (Deadpool, Daredevil), David Lloyd (V For Vendetta, Aces Weekly), Joseph Michael Linsner (Vampirella, Cry For Dawn), John Cebollero (Captain America, Batman), Sean Chen (Iron Man, Valiant Comics), and Brian Kong (Leaf Trading Cards, Cryptozoic Entertainment).  


In addition to all of the comic and collectible guests, headlining the show will be a number of media guests form films and television, including Lori Petty (Tank Girl, Orange is the New Black), Laurence Mason (Gotham, The Crow), Jason David Frank (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Sweet Valley High), Kathy Garver (Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends, Family Affair), Karyn Parsons (Static Shock, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air), Johnny Brennan (Family Guy, Jerky Boys), Debbie Rochon (Tromeo & Juliet, Santa Claws), as well as Pro Wrestlers The Nasty Boys, Scott Steiner, and Ryan Shamrock from the WCW and WWE.


Still, perhaps one of the most anticipated highlights of the show will be Captain Zorikh’s Costume Contest which will once again bring together the most amazing costumers and Cosplayers for a fast-paced, exciting show of creative excellence and costume design. So, shake off the winter blues, and come on out as your favorite character in comics, sci-fi, fantasy, horror, cartoons, anime/manga, video games, or simply make up your own. There will be prizes awarded by audience applause to the event’s best costumes. So come on out and enjoy the day, Saturday, March 7th from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Penn Plaza Pavilion; located at 401 7th Ave. @ 33rd St. in midtown Manhattan. 


Friday, January 22, 2016

Stan Lee's Marvel Cameos

We all know that Stan Lee is Marvel’s ultimate showman, and that he has appeared in a number of Marvel's recent films. Here is a compilation of nearly all of his cameos...



Here is Stan’s “Appearance” in the cartoon Big Hero 6.



Enjoy!

Friday, January 01, 2016

Comicbook Movies of the Millennium

Back in 2000 (the year that Marvel’s first X-Men film came out, and fundamentally altered the way that both Hollywood and — by extension — all of pop culture) viewed the comicbook genre. There have been between four and a dozen comicbook-related films released per year. Over the past decade-and-a-half we have been tracking comicbook movies, (As you'd know if you've been following this blog for any length of time — we have a 30+year history or reporting of actual comics). 

In 2015 there were five comicbook-related movies that hit the theaters. As we’ve reported in previous installments of this column, we are only discussing live-action films that a) either started off in comics, b) are clearly influenced by comicbooks themselves, or c) by comicbook superheroes. Films that we are not considering for this series include anything that originally appeared on TV (live action or animated), theatrically-released animated films, or films based on properties adapted into comics, but were best known for initially appearing in another medium (e.g.: toys). We are also not considering films that were released direct to video or DVD.

The first set of links list an overview of films categorized as the titles indicate. Those links are followed by links to the films chronically by year with the most recent year listed first: We began to post this list over at Examiner.com, but as we are no longer associated with that website, we will continue to post the list over at Hubpages (where we currently post our reviews).

So, here you go, effendi, enjoy!


Other articles in this series are located via the below links:



Saturday, October 31, 2015

A Journalist in waiting

OK, so here’s the thing. I've been writing professionally since 1981. No, really. My first published piece appeared in Amazing Heroes #5, and I’ve been going ever since, with a few thousand articles in print, and probably about that many online, I've authored a couple of books, and contributed to about 20 or so more. I’ve been told that I’m one of the longest-published journalists in the field of comics (not to mention that my work has appeared in virtually every major comic magazine published in the ‘80s & ‘90s.

In the Mid-‘80s I took a step over to the other side of the editorial desk and created and wrote a short-lived espionage series entitled Agent Unknown. I didn't return to writing fiction until 2006 when I started writing for Guild Works Production. since then I’ve been splitting my (writing) time between reviewing comics, and writing for Indie Comicbook Companies like Red Anvil, Atlas Unleashed, Main Enterprises, and others. (You can take a peak at my Comicbook Database bio here).

Why am I bringing all of this up now? Well, earlier in October, I attended New York Comic Con where I picked up a handful-a-handful-and a half of comics while there. Now this is significant (to me at least), because when I got home after the con and added those comics to the (several) stack(s) of comics that were already piled around my house, and wow, do I have a tremendous backlog of comics.

No, seriously.

Now, I'm not trying to say that I'm busier than you, but since the end of August, I've helped setup, run, and tear down a local annual entertainment festival (that I've worked at for nearly 30 years), organize and run a local primary (I'm the Deputy Registrar of Voters in town), attended NY Comic Con, and am now preparing to run an election. Not to mention that I'm in the middle of attempting to downsize, pack up my house, and re-locate to the great state of VA. (Oh yeah, and just last week I attempted to install Win10 on my PC which is currently playing Hobb with my computer).

So, what I guess I'm saying now is that if I haven't gotten to review your comic, pitch you a project, get back to you on the project on which you want me to work with you on, or pen that script, well, truthfully, I've been just a tad busy/distracted/overwhelmed.

So, in no particular order, these are the items in my "in-basket" that are waitinng to be read or reviewed.


I've been a fan of Captain Canuk since the early '80s. When I heard that he was returning to comics, I had to acquire the new series. Upon doing so, I discovered the most excellent We Stand on Guard, another comic from north of the border. I also discovered that I seem to be missing some of the Captain Canuck comics that have come out over the intervening years, and now I'm attemptinng to hunt them down.


Growinng up, one of my first exposures to comics was Charlton Comics, which in recent years has mad its resurgence, due in part to guys like Mort Todd, Paul Kupperberg, and Roger McKenzie. I recently acquired issue #4 of the Charlton Arrow, now I'm looking to get my hands on the new Steve Ditko book they just published.


As we are rapidly approaching Halloween (it is today as I'm writing this) Diamond is celebrating it's annual Halloween Comicfest with a round of free comics (which I just reviewed over at Comics Bulletin). 



I just picked up a double handful of $1.00 cover-priced comic reprints from Mike over at Rogue Comics. The comics above are from Marvel...


...and here are a bunch from a number of other publishers. I like these $1.00 reprints as they allow me to check out stuff that I might have otherwise have missed. 


Oh, and for the record, I don't just review comics, but I also review films, and DVDs as well


I also received a(nother) packet of comics from Dynamite Entertainment to read, review, and enjoy. 


Here is a stack of comics sitting in the "reading room" waiting to be read.


This is literally a copy of the very first comicbook I recall reading. My Uncle used to own a deli/grocery store and when I discovered comics, I'd sit on the newsstand reading (but not buying) every comic I found. I believe that I probably read about a couple of million dollars worth of comics over the years had I actually purchased and saved them) I saw this book back in the early '80s for $10.00 but didn't buy it then as I thought it was too much. Just recently I found it again for quite a bit less and decided to purchase it. It recently arrived.


This is a pile of comics that I acquired at the recent 2015 NY Comic Con.


This is (just one) pile of comics (and books) that I have read over the past several months that need to be reviewed.


This is another pile of recently read comics looking for reviews.


I met Cesar Feliciano, the artist on Comix Tribe's The Red Ten some time back at a CT comicbook show, and he gifted me with four copies of the comic. Well, when I finally got around to reading it I was so hooked, that when I got to Comix Tribe's booth at NYYCC I had to buy all the issues I was missing, including copies of The Oxymoron. Let me tell you it is an outstanding superhero murder mystery, that is unlike anything you've ever read.


Yes, I'm still a dedicated Spider-Fan, and here is my (recent) weekly take of Spidey-titles.


Here is another pile of books that I need to read. This pike sits alongside my bed.


So kids, when I tell you that "I'll get to" your comic, graphic novel, prose novel, etc. and read/watch/review it, really I do mean well , and I honestly will, it is just that I'm not only falling way behind, but I'm also working very hard.

Thanks for (hopefully) understanding.

P.S. So, as I was cleaning up, I found this stack of 2015 Free Comic Book Day (FCBD) comics that have been read, but need to be reviewed and/or discussed.


There was an error in this gadget