Archive for the “cynical” Category
Dilbert and Garfield have a lot of things in common. They’re both massively successful comic strips. They’ve both been turned into animated series. They both have hugely profitable merchandising arms. They both found success through offering safe, relatively innocuous and uncontroversial humor keyed to appeal to as wide a demographic as possible.
So, really, there’s no need for newspapers to run both of them. There has to be a way to free up space in funny pages for something newer and more adventurous without alienating people who just want something to clip out and stick on their cubicle white-board. Which got me thinking…what if the cast of Dilbert were lazy, food-obsessed cats owned by a nerd?
Eh, that sort of works…but it still feels like there’s something missing from this equation…
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I’m probably being unreasonably cranky this morning, but just as Marvel starts reaching a critical mass of putting out books I enjoy, I see their December solicitations…
Here’s the cover for the second issue of Black Widow: Deadly Origin:
Apparently one of Natasha’s lesser known powers is cold-resistant cleavage. And here I just thought she was a super-competent, near-immortal spy and assassin.
Oh well, there’s another Black Widow series coming out, and it’s written by Paul Tobin, and he does books with female characters that I’m not embarrassed to be seen reading.
Black Widow and the Marvel Girls.
Marvel Girls? Not Marvel Women? Okay, post-feminist irony, I can live with that.
Oh dear. It’s the Marvel Divas marketing approach all over again, isn’t it?
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You all have no idea how profoundly disappointed I am that these Heroes of the DC Universe busts aren’t done in a beefcake style to compliment the Women of the DC Universe line.
There are far too many of these generic super-hero statues already. Superman and Batman in posing straps would be a welcome change.
Marvel Crossover Count
Dark Reign: 23
Planet Skaar: 2
War of Kings:4
Messiah War: 3
This sounds an awful lot like an admission that the company’s continuity has gotten too screwy for most readers to keep track of it all:
Seventy years of Marvel history has led to countless thousands of stories, many of which have been reprinted in various collected editions through the years. Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four, Wolverine, Daredevil, the X-Men and more have had dozens of volumes see print. You’ve probably got some on your shelf right now! But if you want more, or you’re just starting to build your library, all the choices at hand may be a little overwhelming — the timelines of your favorite characters a bit confusing. The MARVEL READING CHRONOLOGY will arm you with the information you need to maximize your reading experience! These easy-to-follow chronologies will guide you through your reading list and make you the merriest Marvelite on your block!
At least it’s free…
What I imagine the figurine is thinking:
You…you mean they’re gonna let Millar write me when I grow up? Nooooo!
This is the kind of careful attention to detail I’ve come to expect from modern comics publishers:
The image Wizard has chosen to accompany their ad for their “100 Greatest Graphic Novels of the Last 20 Years” article is Spider-Man.
I shouldn’t be amused by the fact that Boom Studios is now publishing Unknown, Unthinkable and Irredeemable, but I am.
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According to their copyright information, these are the actual titles of the first four trade collections of the current Hercules series from Marvel:
- Hulk: WWH–Incredible Herc
- Incredible Hercules: Against the World
- Secret Invasion: Incredible Hercules
- Incredible Hercules: Love & War
So, depending on how they’re stocked in the store, the books could be in either one place on the shelves, or three different places. It goes without saying that there are of course no volume numbers on the spines or covers of these books.
And it’s hardly as if Hercules is the only Marvel series to be titled in such an…idiosyncratic way for the collected editions.
Why, it’s almost as if Marvel, after all these years, is continuing to treat their trade paper-back program as a half-assed after-thought instead of a genuine revenue stream…
I apologize for the link to Ain’t It Cool News, but the video clip in question doesn’t make sense without the context. So go take a quick look and then come back.
This is the line that I want to take issue with:
But the following clip has one of the coolest sound effect mixed with an action that I’ve seen in a really long time.
Yeah, about that sound mix…it’s about as close an approximation of the “Biff”, “Bam”, “Pow”, “Wowee” sounds of the 60s Batman live-action show that I’ve ever heard. Insert some graphics over the action, and it pretty much is the 60s Batman tv show.
But was purposefully camp then, I’m being expected to take seriously now.
There’s something very wrong with that.
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- In a particularly stunning display of how the vast majority of comic book nerds, no matter how patiently you explain it to them, actively refuse to get it, at the now no longer worth reading (now that all the good writers have left for Robot 6), Blog@Newsarama, writer J. Caleb Mozzocco engaged in a rather sad bit of gay-baiting in aid of a joke that, frankly, wasn’t the slightest bit funny in the first place.
The real fun starts when readers point out what an incredibly stupid, not to mention potentially offensive move Caleb’s little joke was, prompting increasingly hysterical and defensive reactions from both Caleb and fellow Blog@ writer Troy Brownfield. For Christ’s sake, they even pull out a sad variation of the “I can’t be homophobic, I have gay friends” defense.
It was the most pathetisad spectacle of the week. At least until the New York Comic-Con started.
- I thought the dumbest thing I’d ever heard of was the latest revival of the New Mutants comic, the fourth for those of you keeping count. It’s always sort of sad to see Marvel wallowing in shitty 80s nostalgia like this. It’s so contrary to the image they like to present of themselves as a corporation that it almost feels like a betrayal of their core principles. I mean, DC has been publishing Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman comics for 70-plus years; I expect them to look to their past for inspiration from time to time (though, honestly guys, bringing Barry Allen back? There’s a limit, you know?). Marvel is supposed to be the hipper, younger, forward-looking company.
I suppose this is just them finally admitting that their core audience is man-children unwilling to let go of their childhoods.
- Of course, the absolute stupidest thing I’ve heard so far (non-politically) this week was the annoucement of the Dark Wolverine series. I’ll let you all take a laugh break now.
Got it out of your system? Good.
I mean, really? Dark Wolverine? That’s what you think the comic industry needs? A “darker, grittier, edgier” version of Wolver-frickin-ine? And then, to top it all off, the series stars, not Logan, but
Poochie Daken, Wolverine Jr.? If X-23 was created to make a certain segment of fandom feel better about their masturbatory fantasies, what audience is Daken created to satisfy? Fangirls who didn’t have quite enough people to pair Logan up with in their slash stories?
- Of course, some of this makes sense when you consider that the man in charge had this to say about fan complaints about the number of cross-overs in Marvel books these days:
“We’re going to do Marvel Slumber Party,” Quesada joked in response to a question about the pattern of crossovers. He said “giving the characters a rest,” as the fan had suggested, would mean “a bunch of books where nothing happens.”
Either he’s being disingenuous and deliberately misrepresenting the people who think there are too many event books coming out from Marvel too close together, or he genuinely thinks that not having a book tie-in to some larger story means “nothing happens.” I’m not sure which position should insult Marvel fans more.
- Of course, the real tragedy of all this is, that while discussing how face-palmingly stupid all the above is with friends, I was suddenly struck with a really good idea for a Marvel book. Too bad I’d never actually get into a pitch meeting with the company.
I don’t bash DC enough for that.
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I guess “cast stands around looking vaguely embarrassed to be here” is the new “giant heads looking off into the distance.”
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