Return of the Wrath of Comic Con

April 22nd, 2008 Posted by Gavok

The weekend of chunky guys dressed like Colossus and hot women dressed as Slave Leia has come to an end. I myself had a great time, spent with hermanos from this very site and a whole bunch of guys from Funnybook Babylon. Sadly, Thomas “Wanderer” Wilde deemed himself “too broke” to consider joining us and Hoatzin would have probably involved a gigantic plane ticket paid in rare diamonds, since he’s from Europe. I don’t know. I really have no grasp on how that type of thing works. Besides, Hoatzin seems to have vanished from our planet. What happened to that guy?

This one movie sent the other movie into space.

Day One

Last year I got to New York the day before the con started, which allowed me enough rest and whatnot. This year I had to come in the first day of the event and kill time until David Uzumeri came in from Canada, since he was in charge of dealing with the hotel. I walked straight from the Port Authority bus terminal to the Javits Center, which tired me the hell out.

After getting my swanktastical press pass, I met up with hermanos and Joseph of FBB. They were at a panel starting up that was a screening for a new Will Eisner documentary. Since I was tired from all that walking, I decided to stick around and watch it. I found it interesting in the sense that I honestly didn’t know all that much about Eisner, which is almost a sin if you’re a comic fan. The four of us (David U. showed up towards the end) mostly agreed that while it had some fantastic stuff in there, such as taped conversations between Eisner and guys like Kirby, the sum of it was incredibly dry.

Shortly after, we went to the panel on online journalism, with guys from Newsarama and CBR there. It wasn’t as good as the comic blogging panel from last year and mostly focused on arguing over criticism vs. getting press releases. Once that was done with, I was rested up enough to do some wandering.

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Shaking Hands with Skrulls

February 15th, 2007 Posted by Gavok

Annihilation had just ended and the universe is saved. Mostly. What’s important is that Nova beat up Annihilus and for now, the Annihilation Wave is in repair. One of the more interesting subplots – as seen in one of the above site header images – is the teaming up between Super-Skrull and Ronan the Accuser. These two are more or less the #1 heroes of their respective planets. Two races that have hated each other for years have their top dogs fight side-by-side against a threat so great, they have no choice but to co-operate. Obviously, this won’t do all that much to stop the constant hatred between the Kree and the Skrulls. Super-Skrull and Ronan still pretty much hate each other’s guts. They just have a bit more respect for each other.

But it got me thinking. Marvel is doing a lot to change the status quo these days, in ways that make sense and can be used to tell new and interesting stories. What I’m wondering is, could humanity get along with the Skrulls? Could we form some kind of loose alliance?

The Skrulls were created for no reason other than to be the generic galactic invaders. The “little green men”. At first, they were just a race made entirely of insidious world conquerors who wanted nothing more than to take over Earth. A couple years later, the character of Princess Anelle was introduced, showing that despite what we’ve been fed, there are compassionate members of the Skrull people.

Time has changed the Skrulls. The 2000’s have changed the Skrulls more than anything else. While Earth continues to evolve, the Skrull Empire is being broken apart. Their worlds have been destroyed by wars, Galactus, botched weddings, crappy government and lots of cosmic bugs. They could use a helping hand.

As races, man and Skrull seems like easy opposition. With individuals, though, there’s more to be told. Let’s look at some of the more notable Skrulls of recent history.

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New Joe Fridays Week 26

December 23rd, 2006 Posted by david brothers


I’m a Joe Quesada fan. There, I said it. I love reading his interviews because he combines straight shooting with marvelous hype. He said something in the latest NJF that, to me, highlights the difference between Marvel and DC.

Superman was the first, no one is arguing that. He was the very first to put on his underwear outside of his pants. He is the Elvis of comics. Sure, was his creation influenced by other sci-fi and classic stories that came before, of course it was, Elvis was influenced by early rhythm and blues. Much like Elvis, Superman and his compatriots shook up the comics world, in essence created it. He flew over tall buildings, he was the model on which every thing else would be built. Elvis shook his leg, greased back his pomp, and created the blueprint for what was to become Rock n’ Roll.

While Elvis had some incredible hits, as did Superman, the music was simple, quaint in many ways. Almost every Elvis song can be boiled down to three chords. We call it a 1-4-5 progression. They would just change the key, tempo, feel or melody in order to decorate it differently. Still, it was the music of its time and it was beautiful. Then in the 60s came this little group called the Beatles, they were funny, articulate, socially conscious and they spoke to us on a whole different level. The core of the relationship between the music and the listener was much deeper, more relatable.

More importantly however, they brought something else into the music. While they themselves worshipped Elvis and had their share of very early singles with the simple 1-4-5 progressions, they learned from their predecessor and built upon it. Suddenly, we were getting songs with minor chords, diminished sevenths, before you could even get accustomed to all of that, they layered harmonies and added orchestras to their compositions, it was a whole new world that was much more sophisticated than what Elvis had first presented. That’s no slight on Elvis, it’s what happens when art moves on.

To me, the creation of the Marvel hero is very much like this. It took what Superman and other DC greats made famous, in many cases lifted whole parts, and added layers never before seen. Heroes with problems, heroes with Achilles heels, heroes who didn’t always make the right decisions, heck, sometimes they didn’t even beat the bad guy. This was a huge variation in the theme, the defining moment for everything.

Today, we can listen to Elvis songs, and they sound great, but because of the simple quaintness of them, I don’t believe they hold up to today’s younger listeners in the same way that the songs of the Beatles and those that followed hold up. Yes, much like Superman, every once in a while, someone does a great cover of an Elvis tune, but, it’s more nostalgia than anything else. I think the Superman movie proved that as well. You watch that movie and put it up against either of the Spidey movies and it feels like the difference between introducing a kid to Pong vs. Wii.

There’s a reason Batman is the greatest DC hero, he’s the closest to the Marvel formula, but the rest of the DC universe I feel suffers from the same flaws as Superman. In his time, Superman spoke of the immigrant experience which was very important in America at the time, but he’s also a paternal figure where as Spider-Man is us. At his core, Superman is also actually a dishonest character in his make up. He has to create a persona in order to be accepted by the people around him, the same for Batman. That’s also an intrinsic difference between the Marvel and DC characters. Spider-Man is the façade, he’s the mask, Peter Parker is the real deal and if we could actually be superheroes, that’s exactly how it would happen and by virtue of that, makes Spider-Man truer.

By the way, if you disagree with this, that’s cool, but then you would have to argue as to why DC, since the inception of the Marvel Universe, has been trying to Marvelize their characters.

The Elvis/Beatles comparison is a good one, I think. Read the rest of the interview, it’s pretty good and has some nice teases.

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Ultimate ROM 06 – Endgame

February 18th, 2006 Posted by guest article

It’s time to wrap things up, kids. In this episode, I’ll wrap up this little ongoing series of articles. Really, by this point, it ought to be a case of ’nuff sed.

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