Downcounting to None

August 13th, 2007 Posted by david brothers

My peoples over at Funnybook Babylon have a pretty great series of articles up. Downcounting: A Guide for the Perplexed is a series of articles by one Chris Eckert. They’re bitingly funny, they’re incredibly mean, and they’re also extremely on point. Honestly, some of the best stuff I’ve read online in ages. Now that the other guy who was blogging Countdown quit out of disgust, this is pretty much it, too.

I mean, I realize that these are kind of long, but they’re worth it and are, in fact, better than reading Countdown itself. Just look at this:


And tell me that it isn’t genius.

Go check it out.

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook Post to Reddit Post to StumbleUpon


Stop, Drop, and Throw Dem Bows

June 14th, 2007 Posted by david brothers

Courtesy of Pedro Tejeda at Funnybook Babylon, a piece on why Falcon being burned alive on the cover of Captain America 29 really isn’t that bad, dudes. Also, he calls me a “respected black man,” and I just cannot turn that down.

But, really, though, he makes some good points.

I personally feel that the reason, it went over our heads is a slightly more sinister one than us missing the malicious intent hidden in the cover. I hate the fact that a lot of people look at this cover and just see a black man on fire. In some cases, people don’t even mention Snap’s name at all. It’s as if no matter how much the character is developed, advanced in status, or just outright written, readers won’t be able to get past his skin color.

This is the catch-22 that lies at the heart of trying to fix comics. It can make people too cautious, and keep [group] safe and out of danger and… boring. It can be too overzealous and make [group] into a victim. Where is the middle ground? Is there one? That’s the question that everyone has to answer for themselves.

I really like Brian Azzarello’s Loveless. It’s a Reconstruction-era Western, with all that entails. The latest issue, the one that dropped this week, features kind of a lot of black dudes getting lynched and buried. A massacre is the centerpiece of the book. Men come into a township and murder every single able-bodied black male in front of their families. The families don’t even get to cut down the bodies.

It’s harsh and it’s ugly and it’s offensive… and it’s kind of a really good comic series. If I was a different person, I can pinpoint exactly what problems I’d have with the series and be right.

How’d I decide this? Why? I think it’s because I trust the writer to be better than what the story could be. I can point and say “Atticus is going to do this, this, and this” over the course of the next story arc to make this crime right. I don’t feel malicious intent in this, just an attempt to tell a story as it should be told.

“Where do you draw the line?” is something that you should think about, sometimes. Just realize that, a lot of the time, your reasons won’t be consistent or make sense.

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook Post to Reddit Post to StumbleUpon


G’wan and walk it out…

June 5th, 2007 Posted by david brothers

Oh, man, it’s been a minute! Where have I been? Busy, that’s where!

In terms of work stuff, I have been co-writing Guide for The Darkness. I think the game drops later this month? I went to one of these Hot Import Nights show. Better yet– it was for work. I’d never been to an import tuner show, mainly because my taste runs more toward Continentals and Cadillacs than RX-7s and Mazda 3s, you know? It was cool. A lot more models than I expected, though. I didn’t get to see any of San Diego, either, and that kind of sucks! I’ve also been doing a gaggle of galloping game manuals. Curiously, all of them are nerdy or comic game franchises. In fact, the manual I’m wrapping up tomorrow morning is related to a certain franchise that Dark Horse publishes.

In terms of real life stuff, I’ve been adjusting to life in San Francisco, trying to figure out a workable budget that’ll let me stock my place and pay my bills, picking up a diet, and I’m probably going to start exercising here in my place. Need to find a pull-up bar that doesn’t need screws, but that ain’t likely. I’ve also been burning through these Entourage DVD sets I have. I haven’t had a haircut or a shave in a over month now. Time to lose the stubble and cut my hair down to a proper 1/8 inch. Gotta find somebody to do the hair line, though.

My neighbor, I think downstairs-ish, is playing Waiting on the World to Change by John Mayer right now. Last week, it was Sade. I can’t really fault her taste in music, you know? Really laid back. I’ve been listening to a lot of Ludacris and Outkast, myself.

Life is weird. Life is good.

In terms of internet stuff, I’ve been thinking up clever MySpace display names (“Darling, after Valentine’s, I’ve decided!” [get it?]), modding Something Awful’s comics forum (which really isn’t that hard), chatting about ISSUES IN COMICS with people I know, and reading and enjoying most of the blogosphere. Listening to podcasts, too. Check the Funnybook Babylon link on the right-hand side, there.

A couple people said on a blog that there are no non-stereotypical or non-offensive non-white male characters in comics. That was an interesting two days diversion, I must say.

In terms of blogging stuff… I’ve been slacking. I owe a certain comics blog that I really enjoy a guest post (which I’ve finally cracked after a few weeks of stage fright/lack of time). I owe 4l a ton of posts, too.

I’ve been trying to get things straight in my mind. I want to talk about how Nymphet getting canceled made me realize that I, and probably a lot of other people, only care about the first amendment when it suits me. Change comics? Whoo! Cancel pedo books? Whoo! Censor a book I like? Whoa, nelly! Hold up there.

How do making a change in someone else’s comics to reduce sexism/racism/*ism and respecting their right to free speech track? It’s an interesting dilemma. If you have any insight, feel free to share. I’ve thought about making this a separate post, but I don’t feel like I have my mind wrapped around it right yet.

I’ve also been wondering how to follow up my big post from the other weekend, too. I mean, how can you drop a manifesto and then come back with “Deadpool sure is cool hurrrrrr” you know? Here’s the answer: you won’t know how until you do it.

Anyway! I’m well-rested after my weekend in San Diego (kind of) and I really want to get back to 4l. The review post I owe you is up next (and I plan to write it tonight so I won’t be a liar!) and then hopefully some good stuff.

Peace up, A-towns down!

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook Post to Reddit Post to StumbleUpon


Funnybook Babylon » Secrets of the 52 Breakdowns

May 10th, 2007 Posted by david brothers

My homey David Uzumeri has a very good (and plausible!) look at who wrote what for 52. A brief excerpt:

I’ve been hiding this in my back pocket for a while, since I didn’t want to jinx DC putting up more of Keith Giffen’s breakdowns. One of the most hotly-debated topics in the creation of 52 was very simple: Who wrote what? The writers, and DC, have been very cagey about providing answers… but it turns out they were there all along.

So, I’ve been looking at Keith Giffen’s breakdowns on 52thecomic.com, and I noticed that different scenes have different font and numbering styles on the cues (like “13 BOOSTER:” as opposed to just “BOOSTER:” in a different font) in different scenes. So I took a look at it, and it seemed kind of obvious that the different writers use different cues.

Geoff Johns: Times New Roman, “1. CHARACTER”
Greg Rucka: Times New Roman, “1 CHARACTER”
Grant Morrison: Arial, “CHARACTER”
Mark Waid: Courier? (a typerwriteresque font), “1 CHARACTER”

This is what I came up with. The final tally:

You’ll have to visit Funnybook Babylon for the final tally, I’m afraid. I can’t ruin all their fun.

I guess this’ll fuel your “I knew Grant Morrison/Geoff Johns wrote all those parts I didn’t like!” arguments, huh?

Pardon the short post, but a Brothers is packing up boxes like mad. After I’m done, I’ll definitely have something interesting/nerdy/horrible for you, though.

Tangent: I just got hit with a summary of what’s been going on in New X-Men recently and it easily sounds like Marvel’s worst book. They went from nice, kid-friendly but still quality stories to all but three of the original team being killed, kids being tortured, and all this crap?

Plus, Prodigy is dead and I am not happy!

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook Post to Reddit Post to StumbleUpon


Funnybook Babylon

April 3rd, 2007 Posted by david brothers

I took part in a brief (16 minutes or so) podcast over at Funnybook Babylon last week, and they posted it on Sunday. From the site:

Here is the FBB Minicast, a new feature on the site. Every Thursday, Gabe Marini and a rotating cast of panelists will take a quick look at important and topical news issues in the funnybook world.

This week, I’m joined by David Uzumeri, columnist at FBB and David Brothers (a guest from The 4th Letter) This week we focus on DC’s various troubles.

A link: Funnybook Babylon » Episode 4.5 – DC Funnybook Drama

You’ll have to pardon the somewhat spotty quality in a few places. We’re still working out a few kinks. Any tips on group podcasting from readers?

More coming this week.

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook Post to Reddit Post to StumbleUpon