Sunday, February 26, 2012

Oscar Night

Movie talk at the end of the post. Books first.
  1. Catwoman: The Replacements by Will Pfeifer & David Lopez. I had heard good things about Pfeifer's run on Catwoman so I decided it was time to check it out. Pretty good. (Checked out of the library.)
  2. Star Wars Legacy, vol. 11: War by John Ostrander & Jan Duursema. Felt a little rushed, but otherwise a good wrap-up to this story set a hundred years or so after Return of the Jedi.
  3. The Complete Battlefields, vol. 1 by Garth Ennis, Russ Braun, Peter Snejbjerg & Carlos Ezquerra.

    Comics about WWII. Brutal and very well done. (Library.)
  4. The Complete K Chronicles by Keith Knight.

    Massive collection of Keith Knight's great weekly strip.
  5. Reid Fleming: World's Toughest Milkman by David Boswell

    Anarchic comic of a type you saw in the 80s indie explosion but don't see anymore. Lots of fun. "I'm not bald! I get my hair cut this way!"
  6. Who Is Jake Ellis? vol. 1 by Nathan Edmondson & Tonci Zonjic.

    Another book I checked out because I had heard good things about it online. I quite liked this spy story with a twist. (Library.)
  7. Captain Britain and MI13, vol. 1: Secret Invasion by Paul Cornell & Leonard Kirk. While Wisdom: The Rudiments of Wisdom by the same writer didn't really work for me, this does. Maybe I just want more overtly super-heroic stories when a story is set in a super-hero universe. I enjoyed this a lot and have volume 2 lined up to read soon. (And I need to get my hands on volume 3, which appears to be out of stock with the publisher.)
  8. Black Jack, vol. 17 by Osamu Tezuka.

    The final volume of this medical manga. Tezuka was a genius. (Library.)
  9. Showcase Presents: The Atom, vol. 1 by Gardner Fox & Gil Kane. This really brought home how bland Silver-Age DC comics could be. Nobody has any sort of personality. The stories are entirely about getting the Atom into some weird fix (one that would look good as the comic's cover) and then getting him out of that fix.
  10. The Laugh-Out-Loud Cats Sell Out by A. Koford

    Internet memes as filtered through cartoons about hobo cats. Cute stuff.

And now: movies, DVDs, and a concert:
  • Teena & I went to see The Double Clicks, Adam WarRock, and Kirby Krackle when they performed in Portland. Some good performances, but it made me realize I am too much of an old fuddy-duddy to enjoy club shows anymore.
  • Doctor Who: The Time WarriorSarah Jane Smith's first story. Also, the first appearance of Sontarrans.
  • Oscar-Nominated Animated Shorts. Teena & I went with a couple of friends, and we will be informed about one category tonight. I have to say I wasn't too impressed with the selection this year.
  • The NavigatorBuster Keaton was an amazing comedian.
  • Go WestAnother Buster Keaton movie.
  • Lilo & StitchWhen we realized we did not own this movie, Teena & I rectified that right away. It had been too long since either of us had seen it. I love this movie. It brings me to the brink of tears.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Presidents' Day

Early last week and late this week. Oh well.
  1. FreakAngels, vol. 1 by Warren Ellis & Paul Duffield.

  2. FreakAngels, vol. 2 by Warren Ellis & Paul Duffield.
  3. FreakAngels, vol. 3 by Warren Ellis & Paul Duffield.
  4. FreakAngels, vol. 4 by Warren Ellis & Paul Duffield.
  5. FreakAngels, vol. 5 by Warren Ellis & Paul Duffield.
  6. FreakAngels, vol. 6 by Warren Ellis & Paul Duffield.

    When this final collection of the web-comic came out a few months back, I decided I wanted to re-read the previous volumes. Found the time recently. This story inspired by The Midwich Cuckoos by John Wyndham holds up nicely when read all together.
  7. Crossed, vol. 1 by Garth Ennis & Jacen Burrows. More brutal than usual zombie story. (Checked out of the library.)
  8. Excalibur Visionaries: Warren Ellis, vol. 3 by Warren Ellis, Casey Jones, et al. Pretty good. Ellis gets better later.
  9. Stan Lee's Starborn, vol. 2 by Chris Roberson, Khary Randol & Matteo Scalera. Ordinary guy gets caught up in space-opera with a twist. Very enjoyable. (Library.)
  10. Witchfinder, vol. 2: Lost and Gone Forever by Mike Mignola, John Arcudi & John Severin.

    I read this the day after Severin died (at the age of 90). He was one of my favorite artists. He did quite a bit of work for Cracked in the 70s, which is where I first encountered him. Even now, his style speaks to the kid I was, even in a horror-western, which is what this story is. He was one of the greats, and he will be missed.
  11. FF, vol. 2 by Jonathan Hickman, et al. Lots of big science concepts at play here. Enough is going on that I think that once Hickman's run on Fantastic Four (and related titles) is over, I should go back and re-read it all in a short period so that the details don't slip from my memory. (Library.)
  12. PS238, vol. 9: Saving Alternate Omaha by Aaron Williams. The latest volume collecting the comic about a school for super-powered children. The last 2 "issues" in this collection have never appeared in print before. The current comic marketplace won't support a quirky humor title from a self-publisher. (While it does feature super-heroes, I'm sure to a lot of comics fans, it doesn't count because they're not the "right" super-heroes.) I hope going straight to books works out for Williams, because I'd hate to see his work go away.
  13. Wisdom: Rudiments of Wisdom by Paul Cornell, Trevor Hairsine & Manuel Garcia. I feel I should like this more than I do. There's good stuff here, but it never quite gels for me. I think there's a little too much in the script that never makes it to the final page. I think this series would have benefited by being at least an issue or two longer so that there was more room for characterization and less need to get straight into the fighty-fighty.

Don't feel like doing movies this week. So that's all for now.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Early Post

I'm expecting to be busy tomorrow afternoon, so I'm updating on a Saturday.
  1. PunisherMax: Frank by Jason Aaron & Steve Dillon. Amazing exploration of the Punisher's past. (Checked out of the library.)
  2. Dicebox, bk. 1: Wander by Jenn Manley Lee.

    Heard about this great web-comic at last years Stumptown Comics Fest. It sounded good, so I pre-ordered the first print collection. After several months of delays, the book recently arrived, and I read it. It took me a while to get into it, but once I did, I discovered it was worth the wait. Great story, wonderful characters and some amazing world-building. I have caught up online and now I need to wait for each new page. It's going to be tough. Highly recommended.
  3. Stephen King's The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger - The Battle of Tull by Robin Furth, Peter David & Michael Lark.

    How many volumes are we into this adaptation? Because this is book where we finally get to the beginning of the first book. Marvel has a cash cow that's going to last a good long time. (Borrowed from Teena.)
  4. Batman: Through the Looking Glass by Bruce Jones & Sam Kieth.

    I love Kieth's art. The story didn't do much for me. (Library.)
  5. B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth, vol. 2: Gods and Monsters by Mike Mignola, John Arcudi, Guy Davis & Tyler Crook.

    Still very good, but getting very depressing. If the good guys don't start winning at least a few battles soon, I may give up on this series.
  6. Incorruptible, vol. 5 by Mark Waid & Marcio Takara. (Library.)
  7. Chronicles of Wormwood, vol. 2: The Last Battle by Garth Ennis & Oscar Jimenez. Sort of Ennis's version of Good Omens (albeit, not as funny). (Library.)
  8. Unwritten, vol. 5: On to Genesis by Mike Carey, Peter Gross & Vince Locke.

    This continues to be my favorite comic currently being published. I love what it says about stories and how they affect the world (and vice versa). The best thing Vertigo has published since Sandman.
  9. Essential Marvel Team-Up, vol. 1 by various. Nothing great, but certainly entertaining.
  10. At the Mountains of Madness by H.P. Lovecraft & I.N.J. Culbard.

    I liked this comics adaptation of Lovecraft's novel quite a bit. The art might not be to everybody's taste, with clean, simple lines, but I liked it and think it works very well.

A few movies/DVDs/NetFlix WI items in the past couple of weeks:
  • Rumble in the Bronx. I had never seen this before. The story makes about as much sense as any Jackie Chan movie (i.e. not much), but boy are the fights great. The man is just amazing.
  • The Day The Universe ChangedJames Burke's documentary series about how the way we think about the universe affects the way we interact with it. This is fantastic. Wonderfully informative and entertaining. This is how history should be taught.
  • Doctor Who: The Dalek Invasion of Earth. The second Dalek story. There is a sequence where several of the characters flee through an eerily deserted London, trying to avoid Daleks that is just great.
  • DalekmaniaDocumentary about the two 1960 Doctor Who theatrical movies. Pretty interesting. The sheer number of Dalek products was amazing.

Sunday, February 05, 2012

Puppy Bowl Sunday

  1. The Art of Doug Sneyd.
  2. Infinity Gauntlet by Jim Starlin, George Perez & Ron Lim. Big super-hero cross-over. Lots of bombast and action. It's all nonsense, but pretty entertaining. (Checked out of the library.)
  3. Incorruptible, vol. 4 by Mark Waid & Marcio Takara. I recently learned that this series and its companion: Irredeemable will be ending soon. As much as I enjoy them, this is a good thing, because I cannot see them continuing indefinitely. They should conclude, and they will. (Library.)
  4. Excalibur Visionaries: Warren Ellis, vol 2 by Warren Ellis, Casey Jones, Carlos Pacheco, et al. Good stories, but I really didn't care for the art.
  5. Irredeemable, vol. 7 by Mark Waid, Peter Krause & Diego Barreto. (Library.)
  6. The Green Hornet, Year One, vol 1: The Sting of Justice by Matt Wagner & Aaron Campbell. I have to admit, this feel a lot like Sandman Mystery Theatre, another period piece about a masked mystery man. Not that I'm complaining. (Library.)
  7. Shaky Kane's Monster Truck

    I don't even know how to describe this. 50 pages that connect to make one enormous picture. Pop culture ephemera of days gone by. Just plain weirdness. It's great.
  8. Mystic: The Tenth Apprentice by G. Willow Wilson & David Lopez.

    Great young adult fantasy. I would love to see the story continue, but I haven't seen any indication that Marvel's revival of CrossGen titles did well enough that they'll do more. Which is a damn shame.
  9. Polly and the Pirates, vol. 2: Mystery of the Dragonfish by Ted Naifeh & Robbi Rodriguez. I liked the story, but the art often did not do a good job of conveying what was going on. Also, since it has been six years since volume one came out, I'm sure I'm not the only one who would have preferred to have a bit of a re-introduction to the characters and situations.
  10. Avatar: The Last Airbender - The Promise, pt. 1 by Gene Luen Yang & Gurihiru.

    This captures the feel of the cartoon series. It's wonderful. If you love the cartoon (and you should), check this out.
  11. Secret Six: The Darkest House by Gail Simone, J. Calafiore, et al.

    Final volume of Gail Simone's twisted series about a group of super-villains for hire. I'll miss it.

Only one movie this week, and I want to go watch the Puppy Bowl, so I'll put it off until next week.