Hey All! We've moved the Blog portion of the ComicDorksCast over to The Fantasy Shop's Website! Just Click on Wallace The Dragon to find all our new articles. We will still be posting the episodes here as to not interrupt those who have subscribed through iTunes and various other podcatchers but all of our articles have found a new home. Come find us! We've got reviews on games as well and the message boards are once again alive and active!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

What Do You Mean They're Not Superheroes?: Sneak Peek Reviews 09/30/08

City of Dust #1
Written by: Steve Niles

Art by: ZID

The original solicit of this mini-series from modern horror master Steve Niles and ambitious new publisher Radical Publishing mentioned Blade Runner as an influence. I can certainly see where they might have made that sort of connection, and a lot of people may make the connection to a futuristic Fahrenheit 451 but what I think that this story most closely resembles is a cult classic film from 6 years ago called
"Equilibrium". The world of Philip Khrome (our main character) has outlawed all religion, fantasy, and fiction. They believe that imagination is the greatest hindrance to the human mind and that all wars, all illogic, all hate, all difficulty in dealing with the reality of the world around you can be fixed by making the world simply what it is and nothing more, that imagination is the greatest enemy of the world and of humankind. As the story unravels it becomes clear that this has become a much different world even beyond the absence of fiction and fantasy. Trial are held on the street at the point of apprehension, hunting is legal though consuming the animals that you kill is not, stores no longer have names and simply state what they sell on the outside. Ultimately this is a pretty exciting book. I think that we are going to see some really interesting stuff from it. It is most assuredly for mature readers, and if you have checked out any of the other Radical Books (Hercules, Caliber, or Freedom Formula) then this book should most assuredly be on your radar, and if this is going to be your first exposure to Radical then allow me to assure you that you are going to be getting an incredibly good quality product for your money, just based on production value alone!

Terror Titans #1
Written by: Sean McKeever
Art by: Joe Bennett

Been wondering what Ravager has been up to since leaving the Teen Titans? Look no further. Spinning out of the recent events of Teen Titans, Terror Titans is a hard look at the events that h
ave lead to the "Dark Side Club" kidnappings that have been seen in many books, and an even deeper look at those responsible for them. In all reality this book probably could have had a "Final Crisis" cover treatment and have been considered a part of that story as we are getting a much more in-depth look at some of the newly arisen New Gods. This issue starts with a gathering of some less than well known teen-aged heroes and watches them try to fare their level best against the newly reformed Terror Titans. If you didn't read the Terror Titans story arc that recently occurred in the Teen Titans book then you might feel a little lost at first but Sean McKeever does a really good job of making this a story about the events as they occur as opposed to being about re-living moments from the past. Also if you read Grant Morrison's Seven Soldiers of Victory you'll have a pretty good idea of who the characters behind the Dark Side Club are. Again though it is not as essential as it is referential. I highly recommend that you check this series out as I think that over the next six months that McKeever and his artistic partner Joe Bennett are going to be putting together a rather action packed story that should be fun for one and for all.

Vixen: Return of the Lion #1
Written by: G. Willow Wilson
Art by: CAFU

Lurking behind the rather gorgeous cover by Joshua Middleton, G. Willow Wilson has managed to craft a story about a mid-level DC character who has recently been on the rise. Thanks to Brad Meltzer a whole lot of people now know who Vixen is, far more than probably ever cared before. Now we are getting a chance to see her on her own and with Cafu drawing the interiors it is certainly become something to see indeed. Vixen's mother died when she was a child and living in the small village of Zambesi, since then she has become both a supermodel and a superhero (ah the wonders of being a fictional character). It's been ten long years since she has been to her home country of M'Changa but now she has all the reason in the world. Having long believed her mother to have died during a poaching incident, Mari Macabe now knows that her mother died at the hands of a violent tribal leader who is now making a play to become a warlord of sorts. So using her power she is now headed back to Africa to challenge the man who stole her mother away from him and make safe once again the village of her childhood. G. Willow Wilson has become a more visible name in the comics industry since last summer when she penned a one shot that was a part of the Outsiders "Five of a Kind" event that lead to the ongoing Batman & The Outsiders book. Here we see that she not only has a great grasp on how to tell a story but also knows how to use people with powers in frighteningly real situations. Having lived in Egypt Miss Wilson is more than aware of the dangers and issues that face Africa on a daily basis, she manages to make this story both about that and about superheroics in such a way that it never seems preachy. Let's hope that the rest of the series remains as entertaining!

Monday, September 29, 2008

ComicDorksCast Episode 034

(Download Directly: Right Click and choose "Save As..." and save locally on your computer)

Running Time: 01:17:29

  • 00:04:13 - Daredevil #111 continues to knock the Dorks socks off.
  • 00:13:16 - Rob's Pick of the Week: Captain America #42.
  • 00:22:17 - Golly #2 takes the best of Carnivale, Preacher and Deliverance and puts them together.
  • 00:29:08 - Darren's Pick of the Week: Marvel: 1985 #5.
  • 00:38:01 - JAMES ROBINSON ... you make Superman so awesome ... especially issue #680.
  • 00:46:42 - Scott's Pick of the Week: All-Star Batman & Robin, The Boy Wonder #10.
  • 00:55:50 - PREVIEWS!
  • 01:09:42 - Brief Mentions
  • 01:12:13 - Anticipated Books

If you have any questions or comments drop us a line at: Comicdorkscast@gmail.com

Go to www.FantasyShopOnline.com and check out the growing community on the Message Boards.

Check out our website at ComicDorksCast.Blogspot.com.

The Music at the opening and closing of the show was: "Top Drawer" by Man Man.

The Best Books You Didn't Read this Week, Issue 10

Blue Beetle #31

Written by: Matthew Sturges

Art by: Andre Coelho

It's funny, it's action packed, it's dramatic, there are incredibly interesting characters and original characters. Seriously. This has gone from being one of my quiet favorites to being one the books that I have been shouting about from the rooftops! This issue had a great fight scene and quite seriously one of the funniest three panels I have ever had the pleasure of reading. Blue Beetle has become just as great at quipping as Spider-Man ... he might not do it as often, but when he does they are fall out of your chair funny. So, start buying this book. The 4th trade paperback comes out this week and it's time to get the trades and get caught up. Get on it!

Legion of Superheroes #46

Written by: Jim Shooter

Art by: Francis Manapul

As exciting as any team book could be I think that we all realize that it is the interactions between the characters that really keeps you reading the book. Mark Waid had a great grasp on the characters when this title was launched, and Tony Bedard had a pretty good handle on them as well, but it's hard to challenge a the kind of long term experience that Jim Shooter had. This might not be as popular a book as books like Teen Titans or Titans or Young X-Men but I think that it is one of the more solid team titles currently coming out. Sometimes what is great about a book is that it is a blue chip, it's a consistent hitter ... it might not be a power hitter, it doesn't hit a lot of home runs, but it gets some pretty consistent doubles and it always gets on base. If you are looking for fun then look no further.

Youngblood #5

Written by: Joe Casey

Art by: Derec Donovan

I never thought I would like a Youngblood book ever again. But Joe Casey has this way of making any concept incredibly worth reading about. Whether it's corporate intrigue, zany sci-fi, campy magic, probation officers, guys with bar-codes on their faces, guys slowly turning into stone ... even straight up superhero fare. This has been a really cool title and it has been plenty easy for me to get into even though I hadn't read a Youngblood book since like 1996. Derec Donovan is also a totally awesome artist. I think that if you are looking for a superhero book that looks a little deeper into the way that fame is entirely created then this is the book for you, if you are looking for something that is a scathing condemnation of the way that the media works and looks at celebrity then look no further.

Straight from the Donut Hole: A High school look at Comic conventions


            Comic Book Conventions… Girls shriek to the word, jocks laugh at its existence, but only the nerds declare pilgrimage to its name. But in this day and age, stereotypes are losing their hold on the new generation of our youth. Take into account senior, Zack Meyer. Look at his school activities and you see a history of a hardcore sport addict. However bring a little nerd into the picture and his true colors show. So Zack, are you a comic book fan or have any hobbies that might be labeled nerdy? 

            “ Oh Yeah !!, I read some comic books and the greatest thing about them are how they seem to almost take you into a different world.”

             Comic book conventions or “Con’s” have been around for years and will continue to be for the foreseeable future. Conventions can be appealing to all walks of life, rather than just the textbook nerd.

            First things first, to clean up some of the dirt that clings to the word convention and find where truth stands and where false accusations take root. So yes, these are large conventions for comic books, anime, and video games, and yes, there is an occasional large grotesque men who decided not to shower or change clothes for days (and yes they some also wear costumes). But this isn’t the foundation of what comic book conventions stand for, only its overexposed imperfections. Now it’s time to see where this coal turns to diamond.

            Over the summer, I attended my first Con, known as Wizards World in Chicago, Illinois. I went with two of my good friends (Darren Orf, former Duchesne student) and my friend, Samurai Scott (he has a sword he walks around with, don’t ask questions). So this being my first Con I was as giddy as a school girl on the ride down to Chicago, asking questions about who will we see, what can I get signed, and the classic: are we there yet? Upon arrival, a parking spot was found and then preparation to enter the convention began. Walking through the entrance, I laid my eyes upon acres of comic book heaven, major company booths, chains of comic vendors, and everything a comic lover could find. But all of this still plays into the old stereotype of why these conventions are looked down upon. The real power behind these conventions are the comic book panels. A panel is a gathering of writers, artists, and creators who sit in a large room of people and talk about what is to come in the comic book world. The magic of these large gatherings is the personal level of the discussion between fan and creator. The sense of surrealness of talking to a famous writer on the same level as a fan, and not feeling the sense of being looked down upon by these writing celebrities. The writers are real people even when treated as celebrities. Just the atmosphere of these gatherings can make any strange new comer feel right at home. It’s that factor, this embracing of culture and ideals that really makes a con something to respect. Comic books will never be loved by the world, but maybe a light has been shown to what they stand for and why they always will…

Blog Log # 2 (Quote of the Week: Special Edition)

“We strike today at the fuel source of the modern world. We strike at the crutch that holds up corruption and allows it to walk unfettered in the world that, at best, only limps along. We attack the bureaucracies of nations. If only to protect their essence, their peoples. We will be called villains. We will become targets from this day forward, the outrage of the unknowing representatives of hidden corruption. Perhaps this is at the root of what it means to be a hero. That at some point, a hero must be misunderstood, must be hated, must be feared. Perhaps at that point, in that moment, they can finally do true good for the world. Free of accolades. Free of spotlights. Free of the support of the masses of the world." I just read this and thought you should too. –Rob

Brief Mentions: Explaining the Unknown

Madame Xanadu #4
Written By: Matt Wagner

Art By: Amy Reeder Hadley

There are many mysterious characters throughout the DCU. Some of these characters have very vague backgrounds and some do not have origin stories at all. One such character is Madame Xanadu. In June of 2008, Vertigo launched Madame Xanadu to create an origin story of one of DC’s most mysterious characters. Madame Xanadu first appeared in Doorway to Nightmare #1 in 1978, since then very little has been done with her. She was recently seen in Day of Vengeance, an Infinite Crisis tie-in, in which she was blinded by the Spectre. Her last appearance was seen in Countdown # 50 where she was unable to locate Captain Marvel, Jr. and warns Mary Marvel to stay away from Gotham City. This lack of origin and character development is what attracted Matt Wagner (Mage, Grendel) to this title. In a CBR interview Wagner states, “She’s a fairly blank slate of a character and that’s part of what attracted me to this project in the first place. In fact, based on my own private polling, all anyone seems to know about the character is that she had a spate of beautiful covers by Mike Kaluta back in the’70s and’80s and that she’s recently been blinded.” Wagner goes on to explain that this is an origin story for Madame Xanadu so that comic readers can see where this mysterious mystic comes from. To join Wagner in his cause is artist Amy Reeder Hadley (Fool’s Gold) whose unique art style truly adds to the series. Though this story contains action, for the most part it is a love story between two characters: Madame Xanadu and The Phantom Stranger. It is known in continuity that Madame Xanadu distrusts Phantom Stranger and Wagner is now developing exactly why that is. He also fleshes out the reason why her name is Madame Xanadu. In the third and fourth issue, Madame Xanadu is a “western seer” to Kublai Khiyad Khan and in a CBR interview, Wagner explains, “the second chapter of the story, not the second issue, takes place in the court of Kubla Khan. This is largely due to the fact that I had to find some way for her to bear the name of her eventual identity. ‘Xanadu’ was the name of Kubla Khan’s summer palace…” Wagner delves deep into history, literature, and comic continuity to provide comic readers with the very best story. This has been an absolutely great story, with great art and great colors (shout-out to my boy, Guy Major). This story is worth every cent and further strengthens the continuity of the DCU and gives an in-depth look at a very complex character.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Blog Log # 2 (Quote of the Week)

Well folks, its Friday and here is the quote(s) of the week. “As long as they are left alone to eat, sleep, watch their TV and fornicate, most of the human race will go along with whatever they are told to do.” There’s some food for thought. You might want to think twice before you go jumping off of any bridges. My advice is not to watch TV and fornicate at the same time; it might not end the way you want. That is unless you are alone, of course. Let’s learn from others mistakes. Speaking of mistakes “Whatever mistakes you made in the past stay there. Here and now is all that matters. That’s what I learned in the Big One.” Hope that satisfies your quote of the week problem for a bit. I have to run now. Can you hear them calling for me? “Hey Cap over here! Hey, Cap!” “Way to go Cap! Yeah!” “Hey Cap can we get a statement?!” “A picture for my wife, Cap?!” “ Over here, Cap, smile!” Geez… guys! There is only so much Captain Clet to go around. “Who are you people? What do you want from us?” Be here next week, same time and same place for your quote-tastic fix. –Rob

Thursday, September 25, 2008

What I’m Reading Now: Once Upon A Time...

Pinocchio survives the whale, Beauty and the Beast fell in love, and Snow White found her price charming… and then their stories began. Vertigo Comic’s Fables, written by Bill Willingham (Shadowpact, House of Mystery) and interior art by Mark Buckingham (Marvelman, Hellblazer) begins where these tales end. The fables have been banished from their home-worlds by the mysterious adversary who has ravaged multiple lands and worlds. These fables currently reside in an enchanted and sheltered part of New York City called Fabletown. The fables, who reside in fabletown, are fables who are able to appear or have an enchantment which makes them human. There is a separate part from the city called The Farm where animals such as the three little pigs, giants, and dragons, reside. There is not one central character but instead follows several different characters. The characters that are the main focus are Snow White, Bigby Wolf (Big Bad Wolf), and Prince Charming. Of course there are several stories, which feature any fable you can think of and some that you can’t. All the characters have received amnesty for their old crimes so Bigby Wolf, Frau Totenkinder, and Bluebeard are actually heroes. There are many great stories with a wide range of characters from little red riding hood to Rupenzel’s hairdresser. Bill Willingham creates a great fantasy/reality story that is both comedic and serious. One of the greatest thing about this series is its appeal to all people: men and women, young and old. It is a great story if you love fantasy and old fables. Its also a great series if you have ever seen a Disney movie and liked it. I believe that all people identify to one fable one-way or the other and Fables is the same way. Fables is currently on issue #75 so it is a very well developed and complex story. I read the first nine trades over the summer, so I am about to begin The Good Prince story arc. The fables team just recently acquired the rights to Peter Pan so he may not be far into the future. This is a great story that every comic reader should be reading. Clap if you believe in Fables!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Living Up To Expectation: Squadron Supreme 2 # 3

(Yep, I know This book came out 2 weeks ago. The thing is I had two anticipated books that were trade paperbacks and Avengers Initiative. Which, you read a brief mention about the last issue. So, not to wear it out I chose Squadron Supreme. But, everybody should be reading Avengers Initiative.)-Rob, with no help from Scott.

Writer- Howard Chaykin

Artist- Marco Turini

(This is a review. Traditional rules apply but you don't have to stop until the 2nd paragraph.)

This story of Squadron Supreme has seemed quite a bit different then the books leading up to this point. This point happens to be 5 yrs after the events in Ultimate Power. The books leading up to this story are as follows; Supreme Power, Squadron Supreme, a Dr. Spectrum mini, a Hyperion mini, a Nighthawk mini, a Nighthawk vs. Hyperion mini, and Ultimate Power. There is also a trade cleverly entitled Squadron Supreme from the mid- 80’s, written by Mark Gruenwald. I recommend all of it but feel Supreme Power, Squadron Supreme (JMS), and Ultimate Power are necessary. If you don’t want to read all that, just ask Scotty where to start. He’s more open to jumping onto things (in your endo) but he also understands a build up. So you might be screwed on this one. Before we start, I know… I know… you are saying, “ But, Rob it seems to be a new cast!” and now we will get to that.

Issue # 3 gives us more build up and more of the same story with the “new cast” including Ultimate Nick Fury, who oddly enough is doing Nick Fury things... ultimately. We get more of the grade A model student, you all know her as the strange (yet sexy) thing on the cover of this issue, and a plan. One of them “not so smart a lot of people could die even though it feels so right” kinds of plans, those always end so well. Then, we get to the highlight of this issue for me. An interesting conversation between two familiar faces, that leaves us to wonder when the “old cast” will be returning.

I believe Chaykin is doing a fine job of writing this book. I also believe this book is still building up to something that will finally fill the void. The whole story has been good but plagued with an abrupt stopping point. Then we got Ultimate Power, which sort of bridged a gap but was mostly a crossing over of two universes. Leaving Chaykin to pick up the pieces and put it back together. I have total faith that Chaykin will give me something to enjoy. And not to leave Marco out; I have no major complaints about the artwork. Good job, Marco! If you really want to know you should just read it. -Rob

***Robnotes version -issue # 3 (because, I too... have a short attention span)

This one scary dude with an eye-patch seems to be running shit. These other dudes are like the fantastic four, but dumber and they are running around. This chick version of Spiderman is on rooftops, talking and shit. Then this Dude like the Flash talks to a dude like Batman about some shit. Then these other dudes think they can escape, like they don’t know how scary the one-eyed dude is. Not to mention, dudes we haven’t seen yet. People will probably be destroyed. Like dead bodies everywhere. Oh yeah, I almost forgot, one dude looked like Iron Man and the world seems totally fucked up, like destroyed and shit.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

What Do You Mean They're Not Superheroes?: Sneak Peek Reviews 09/23/2008

Daredevil #111
Written by: Ed Brubaker
Art by: Clay Mann (Guest Artist)

It's honestly hard to think of a book that has been as good as long as Daredevil. And to think that on top of that it has been monthly the whole time. It all starts back with Brian Michael Bendis' run way back in issue 16. So that's 84 issues of really incredible comics (wondering why that math doesn't work out so well? Bob Gale and Phil Winslade had a 5 issue run early on and David Mack wrote and drew a 6 issue run later on). That's 17 trade paperbacks of absolutely phenomenal story-telling. So, when I say that it looks like this is going to be one hell of a story that should hold some weight. This issue is the start of a new story and the introduction of a whole new character whose name might sound familiar. Lady Bullseye is the weapon of an all new threat in the life of Matt Murdock. There are a number of new things going on in the life of the man everyone believes is Daredevil, and none of them seem to be doing much good. So, if you haven't yet caught on to the absolutely amazing stories going on in Daredevil then perhaps it's time you took the plunge.

Back to Brooklyn
Written by: Garth Ennis & Jimmy Palmiotti
Art by: Mihailo Vukelic

Garth Ennis has been working in the comics industry since 1990 and has been one of the preeminent names in comics since 1995. Jimmy Palmiotti started working in the comics industry in 1988 and gained a level of prominence in 1994 and reached perhaps his greatest level of fame when he and his long time artistic partner Joe Quesada launched an upstart imprint at Marvel called Marvel Knights. A while back he stopped just being one of the world's preeminent inkers and became a writer as well, working mostly with co-writer Justin Gray. So when these two guys get together it's time to check out their book. Add to the mix newcomer Mihalio Vukelic and you have a serious must have book. This is a gang story. This is a mob story. This is a story of wise-guys and rats. This is a cop story. And a special agent story. This is a revenge story. This is a family story. This is the kind of story you thought you wouldn't see for quite some time now that Mr. Ennis is no longer working on Punisher. Seriously this is one totally awesome book and it's also an incredibly good deal at $2.99.

Usually I only review books the week that they come out. It's a way of telling you about some of the books that will be on the shelf when you get to the store. The following review is for a book that isn't going to be on the shelf until October the 22nd. We were provided photo-copies of the first two issues of the upcoming Vertigo ongoing series: The Unknown Soldier and I thought you all might be interested to hear how it is well in advance of it's release.

(If what you read here sounds like something you would be interested in then make sure that the Manager of your local store knows that you are going to want it so that they can adjust their orders accordingly before the final cut off date.)

The Unknown Soldier #1
Written by: Joshua Dysart
Art by: Alberto Ponticelli

The Unknown Soldier is a character that was created by Joe Kubert in 1966, since then he has appeared in many different series of varying levels of success. Now as a Vertigo ongoing by Joshua Dysart, most recently of BPRD: 1946 fame but also creator of Violent Messiahs, and artist Alberto Ponticelli, the series takes a whole new spin. Most often the character is shown as an American soldier fighting in a war (most frequently WWII) whose face is covered in bandages after suffering a terrible injury. Here the main character is Lwanga Moses, a Harvard educated doctor who was born in Uganda and raised in America. He and his wife have decided to come back to Africa to help the people of their homeland as best they can. Lwanga is a world famous humanitarian and is doing everything he can to try and encourage a peaceful end to hostilities in Uganda and all over Africa. He believes that in order to really see permanent change that things must change from within. That Africa and Africans cannot expect the USA, the UN, the EU, China or anyone else to force change, that for the betterment of Africa the changes must be demanded by Africans. A peaceful and prosperous Africa is Dr. Moses dream. But not what he dreams of at night. At night he has nightmares. Nightmares that often end with him killing his wife Sera. All in all this book is incredibly good. It manages to be about Africa and the horrors that go on their without feeling single faceted. It is also about a marriage, and a great desire to do good. Ultimately I think that this book will have a great deal of appeal to fans of Sandman Mystery Theatre, as the main character manages to remind me a great deal of Wesley Dodds and his relationship with his wife in turn reminds me a great deal of the relationship between Wesley and Dian Belmont. I think that Joshua Dysart has crafted a great sense of narrative and has a great feel for story-telling. Also Alberto Ponticelli is a fantastic artist who has a similar feel, but not style, to Riccardo Burchielli (DMZ). The pages are filled with detail and the characters are very distinct and very well drawn. Ultimately he has a very "Vertigo" style so don't expect to get the kind of look for The Unknown Soldier that you might have gotten from Joe Kubert, and if you are exclusively a fan of typical super-hero style art then this book may not be for you but I think that if you are looking for something new to try out that you certainly won't be at all disappointed. Issue #2 is no less amazing and introduces an incredible concept to the story. I don't want to say to much as I fear I would spoil what was a really incredible bit of story-telling. Dysart seems to have really done his research not only about Africa but also about combat tactics and strategy. I was honestly lukewarm about the prospects of this book when it was announced but now I can say without reservation that both of the first two issues will be coming home with me when they come out and that I cannot wait to re-read them in color, not only to see the pages in color but because they are both very good and will make for interesting second readings. I hope you all check them out!

Monday, September 22, 2008

ComicDorksCast Episode 033

(Download Directly: Right Click and choose "Save As..." and save locally on your computer)

Running Time: 01:14:35

  • 00:04:17 - Titans #5 assuages our fears and we are all want Bear-O-Grams.
  • 00:13:50 - Rob's Pick of the Week: Birds of Prey #122.
  • 00:23:14 - Walking Dead #52 proves that not everything is so grim.
  • 00:30:46 - Scott's Pick of the Week: Scalped #21.
  • 00:36:17 - Nick Fury is DEFINITELY back with Mighty Avengers #18.
  • 00:43:48 - Darren's Pick of the Week: Action Comics #869.
  • 00:50:35 - E-MAILS!
  • 01:05:52 - Brief Mentions
  • 01:08:33 - Anticipated Books

If you have any questions or comments drop us a line at: Comicdorkscast@gmail.com

Go to www.FantasyShopOnline.com and check out the growing community on the Message Boards.

Check out our website at ComicDorksCast.Blogspot.com.

The Music at the opening and closing of the show was: "Tomorrow Goes Away" by Delta Spirit.

The Best Books You Didn't Read this Week, Issue 9

Written by: Jason Aaron
Art by: R.M. Guera

Yes it was my pick of the week but it also deserves to be on the list of "Best Books You're Not Reading" BECAUSE YOU ARE STILL NOT READING IT! Jason Aaron is easily as good at writing crime fiction as Ed Brubaker, he also pens fantastic characters and deserves your attention and you dollars. I have mentioned before that this is a book that has floored me from the get go, I was sold from issue one. And as I have said before if you don't like it you can get your money back. As a matter of fact if you haven't yet checked this book out then you should go to www.scalped.info and you can read the first issue for free via Vertigo's website, and also as you can see on the website if you buy the first trade paperback and you don't like it you can mail it to Jason Aaron and he will refund your money and the cost of shipping, so if you don't like it you are out absolutely nothing. AND, as I have mentioned before if you are at all interested the first two volumes are currently available buy one get one free at the Fairview Heights location of The Fantasy Shop. So really, there is not a single good reason to have not checked out one of the best books currently being produced. The book that plenty of great people are having even greater things to say about:

"SCALPED is some of the most compelling character work and crime writing I've seen in a long time." - Ed Brubaker

"The best new series in years. Spread the word. Tell your friends. Talk about it. Blog about it." - Garth Ennis

"Aaron's talent for dialogue is complemented spectacularly by R.M. Guéra's vivid pencil work." - Playboy

"One of the richest, most rewarding reads around." - Wizard

"SCALPED has attitude, SCALPED has guts and SCALPED is no holds barred. In short, SCALPED is fucking great." - Crimespree Magazine

"If you're not reading SCALPED, you're crazy. You are literally, not metaphorically, a lunatic, and you will probably end up in some sort of asylum if you're not careful. It's that good. It will keep you sane with its greatness." - Timothy Callahan, author of GRANT MORRISON: THE EARLY YEARS

"If SCALPED doesn't leave shivers down your back, read it again." - Reznet News

Written by: Paul Cornell
Art by: Pat Oliffe

Often times when a book gets launched as a part of a giant crossover it falls apart after the connection to the crossover fades away. Marvel and DC both have mixed luck when it comes to creating titles that spin out of events or that start in the middle of events. What Paul Cornell is doing with his British super-team though is not only incredibly interesting, and incredibly fun, it is also doing very well for a new title featuring a bunch of characters who have never managed to hold their own ongoing title for too awfully long. I have to honestly say that there is a lot of really great stuff about Captain Britain and MI:13. Part of what is great about it is that despite Marvel being a "Universe" we really rarely see outside of New York City and deep in space. And when we have lately it has either been cancelled or written by Chris Claremont, neither of which is good. But this book is great. And I think that if you haven't checked it out that you are missing out. Jump on to a great new team book that has taken The Order's place in my heart.

Written by: Brian Wood
Art by: Ryan Kelly

This is seriously a great series. And add to it the fact that this is perhaps one of the single most handsome hardcover collections I have ever had the pleasure of putting my hands on and adding to my collection and you can soon see why it is one of the best books you didn't read last week. This is another one of those books that great people have a lot of great stuff to say about:

"The coolest short film never shown on The IFC or Sundance Channel." - Sequential Tart

"... Each page is a lush, inky image to be savored." - Variety

"You're going to want this one. Trust me." - Warren Ellis

"The Best Ongoing Indie Comic of 2007" - G4 TV

"The Sharpest slices of life the medium has ever seen." - Bryan K. Vaughn

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Brief Mention: The Astounding Wolf-Man # 8

Astounding Wolfman #8

Writer-Robert Kirkman

Penciler, Inker- Jason Howard

(This is a review. I tried not to spoil too much, but again, this is a review.)

Have you ever woken up in the woods (or any where else) wondering where you clothes where? Maybe you had drank a little too much? Maybe you were sleepwalking and decided it would feel better to be in the raw? Maybe, just maybe you are a werewolf? If your morning breath includes the taste of blood and/or there are dead bodies around, you have to wonder. Gary Hampton is a werewolf. A werewolf superhero, nonetheless… well, sort of. Now, let’s get on with issue # 8.

If you have been reading this book then you know what has lead up to the events we find in these pages. I picked up an Image Monster Pile up #1 a couple weeks ago and it was pretty cool. Within the pages of this Monster Pile up was a four-page Astounding Wolf- Man story that bridges issue # 7 and issue # 8. Amongst, The Astounding Wolf-Man story there was a FireBreather, Perhapnauts, and Proof. You should know that the regular creative teams did all the stories. I recommend trying to pick up the Monster pile up but you can be all right without it. The complete-ist in me says go out and get it.

Issue # 8 begins with the events leading right out of the Monster Pile up. (Yep, the dudes with guns in the office.) If you would like me to spoil the Pile up for you, drop an e-mail. Now, Gary Hampton has found himself in a very peculiar position, which leads him to hit the road. All this time he is also dealing with the tragedy that has just been dealt him (You know, false accusations and death and stuff.) and trying get back home to his daughter, Chloe. Chloe is back home at the Hampton’s Estate where her hatred can grow and grow and grow. But, we find out that this is not where Gary’s destination is to be… for now. He has some business to take care of before he can return home. Enter a new wolf-man. A larger, Rastafarian looking wolf-man, (but not jah love, one love, feeling ire, bop… bop… bop, kind of Rastafarian) who may be more important than Gary realizes.

The Astounding Wolf-Man is a Kirkman Image book. What else should I have to say? Now, I’m not saying it is to level of his other two (just yet) but it is still early. Jason Howard’s art on this book is pretty fantastic, as well. Image seems to be a company that understands how trades should be put out. (for the most part) They released the first trade paperback (including issue 1-7 and some pretty cool sketches, as well as, an intro by your boy Kirkman) that came out just before issue # 8. That means it is really easy for you to hop on RIGHT NOW and be caught up. So hit up your comic shop and add this title to the list of Kirkman Image books that you love reading. Just do it! Come on-Rob

*Note from the editor- Looking in the mirror only to see small blotches of skin, doesn’t mean you are a werewolf. Trust me! That is no excuse for being a hairy dude. You must embrace that we had no choice but to be warm and fuzzy. Join me, all you hairy dudes, let’s take it back! -Rob

Blog Log # 2 (Quote of the Week: Director’s Cut… Unrated)

Hello folks, this is Rob. (I write the quote of the week, if you care.) Due to the standards and regulations board of blogging, I was forced to cut some things out of the last post. After, many hours of head scratching I finally got it. A director’s cut, completely unrated. So what you are about to read is the content I was forced to cut. “Yeah, I used to do my best thinking on the john, too.” And still do.

This scene started with a group of frat guys. (we will call them tigers) As the story goes a tiger, tiger # 1, was telling a story. You know, one of them locker room stories. You know how guys love to brag. Anyway, this tiger goes, “such delicate work is difficult enough in a stable, empty setting.” Which, tiger # 2 replied, “Try doing it while a madwoman is slapping and clawing at you.” “But we’re in the business of accomplishing the impossible under the worst conditions.” Just then a third tiger enters the room and asks if he could watch them practice. After, dodging a hail of mind bullets he hears, “Ask me that again. Go ahead. I dare you.” “This is all fun and games, ja?” thought tiger # 2. As tiger # 3 shuffles away he hears what appears to be a “Meat seizure.” And wonders if “he’s crazy enough to enjoy this!” but now he begins to become intrigued as tiger # 2 yells, “It’s good! It’s good now slow down fortheloveofgod!” So tiger # 3 creeps himself up to the door to take a peek. He knew that he shouldn’t be looking in but he did it anyway. To this day he still says, “It was the most beautiful and perfect thing I had ever seen.” Abruptly, the other two tigers looked at one another. “Elf, did you wet your pants?” said tiger # 1 to tiger # 2, which, replied firmly, “Nein.” Tiger # 1 said, while chuckling, “Well it ain’t me neither“ (obviously, tiger # 1 is an english major) They both began to laugh; when out of the corner of their eyes they spotted tiger # 3 and said, in harmony, “Guess that only leaves you, boy.” Tiger # 3 immediately turned and ran. He ran like a boy that just gave himself one of those, what do the kids call them, golden showers. Tiger # 1 and # 2 just watched until tiger # 1 broke the awkward silence with, “Damn, he’s hot!” Tiger # 1 probably said that because, tiger # 3 sweated profusely by nature and suffers from anxiety problems. Not to mention, he had just pissed himself. It turns out, despite his brothers lack of interest in helping him, good old pee-pants was to become a world-class beer pong player. The scene ends with WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEW! KEG STANDS! –Rob

*Disclaimer- By no way does the use of “tiger” have anything to do with where anybody chose to pursue their growth in academia.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Blog Log #2 (Quote of the Week)

Happy Friday everybody! Guess what? Yep… it’s quote of the week time. (Well, it’s late Thursday for me and all you folks are stacking Z’s.) Like my pal Dayron I’m feeling the pressure of time constraints that leave me with a small, weird window of time to fulfill my doo-tees. “How much data will your brain store before turning into sludge?” You hear that Dayron? Our lives are in danger! “You know, being as we haven’t actually done anything. Ever.” But Dayron, “That’s the game we’re playing here, hillbilly, and if you can’t handle that, get your ass back behind the 7-11 counter where you belong.” (To the first people that encounter me in the morning- sorry guys, I love my visits. Your coffee is always hot, you energy drinks are always cold, your smiles are always bright, and I’m always a bear. Those were one-eyed eagle’s words, not mine. And Darren I think we know who the hillbilly is.) Always remember Dayron, “Grin and Bear it, Visionary.” “Trust me. It’s better than not knowing.” Even when you want to, “tropelet emoh!” Now to move on to Dick, “You can’t beat karma.” That quote is for the Titans fans out there. You know what page this should be on? Beings this blog has been a little heavy handed I will leave it with one word, but plural, “Nuts.”

You have probably noticed that the quote of the week has become the quotes of the week. As long as these books are this good how can I choose just one quote? To be honest, I’m cheating. I have only read… maybe half of my books. (Not only am I short on time I am short on the funds. Not to worry, I’ll be getting the rest of my books tomorrow.) Not to make any promises but this blog could come with a director’s cut. We will have to wait and see. - Rob

Thursday, September 18, 2008

What I’m Reading Now: Opal CIty's Finest

O man. What a week! I got homework to do all over the place and it’s been pretty hectic. Fortunately for me (and hopefully for you), I was able to spare the time for one comic to get started on. A comic series that is not to be taken lightly. A comic series that comic fans across the globe consider the greatest dc superhero book ever made. A comic that spanned 81 issues from 1994 to 2001. A comic series that our very own Capt. Cletus highly recommends (See blog log #2: You don’t know jack?) This comic series is none other than: Starman. Written by James Robinson (Superman, Leave It to Chance) and art by Tony Harris (Ex Machina), Starman is a comic that I have gained and instant love for and haven’t felt this excited to read a comic since I first read Preacher. This is the story of Jack Knight, the son of the original Starman, Ted Knight, who first appeared in adventure comics number #61 (1941). Jack Knight opens the story as being the reluctant hero. He works at an antique/junk store and always scoffs at the family mantle of Starman. The story begins with Starman dying…. yea, I know, a short story huh? We come to learn that David Knight, Jack Knight’s brother, has taken up the mantle of Starman in result of Jack’s reluctance to the family “business”. The comic quickly becomes a story of survival as Jack Knight is pursued by many mysterious figures including Starman’s arch-nemesis, The Mist. Jack Knight, reluctantly decides to take up the name of Starman (but decides on new costume attire). I am currently reading this series in the new omnibus format that DC recently issued in June of this year and it is wonderfully put together (unlike the trades…). James Robinson does a great job portraying the story of Starman and is very good with inner monologue and character development. He uses very interesting and dynamic characters throughout the story, which makes it that more appealing. Another great thing about this book is that we get to see early Tony Harris art and watch him mature as an artist. Tony Harris’s pencils are just vital to Starman than are the James Robinson’s scripts. I wish I could tell you more about this book but unfortunately I am only on the fourth issue. But though I am already four issues in I can see why Entertainment Weekly called it, “the best-written superhero in comics” and why its been nominated numerous times for the Eisner. It is a classic superhero story that young and old comic fans can enjoy. So go read it….(insert witty ending).

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Living Up To Expectations: Ghost Rider #27

Ghost Rider #27
Written by: Jason Aaron
Art by: Tan Eng Huat

Each week all three of the ComicDorks pick three of the books off of the "Shipping Next Week" list that we are really looking forward to. We call it "The Anticipated Books". Then whomever hosted that show goes home on the following Wednesday, reads a bunch of comics, or at least the three books that they picked as their "Anticipated Books" and writes a review of a couple of them. Most of the time you'll find a couple of reviews here every Wednesday night. Tonight however I defer all of my time to the man from Kansas City, The One and Only Jason Aaron. I have told just about everyone with ears that I have ever spoken to in a comic book store that they should be reading Scalped. It is an incredibly brilliant book from the pen of Mr. Aaron which also came out this week, but like I said I have given plenty of my time and oxygen to trying to get people to read Scalped and all of those who have tried it out have found the brilliance contained within those pages.

But it has been only recently that I have begun expousing the greatness and wonder of Mr. Aaron's run on Ghost Rider. His first issue was April's #20 and came after the conclusion of Daniel Way's run. He worked with artist Roland Boschi on his first arc which featured protagonist Johnny Blaze on the hunt for an Angel by the name of Zadikel. He had always believed that The Ghost Rider had been a tool of the Devil, of Mephisto. But if so, why would he be let out of Hell time and time again only to thwart the plans of evil men? As it turns out the original Ghost Rider was a weapon of Heaven under the purview of the Angel Zadikel. So all of the torment that Johnny has endured and all of the pain that has been inflicted upon his friends and family has been because of the machinations of the power hungry Zadikel.

Aaron's first arc featured cannibal ghosts, nuns with guns and a young man who had seen beyond the veil of death and was marked by Zadikel himself. By the end of the story a familiar face had been seen among the shadows: Danny Ketch, Blazes' long lost brother. In Aaron's second arc he is joined by one of my all time favorite artists, and someone who's career I have been following as best I can as he has grown both in popularity but also in talent, Tan Eng Huat. We see him go into the belly of the beast, into a maximum security prison where he met with another of Zadikel's agents on Earth.

This new story arc has seen the return of a lot of characters that were introduced during the 90's run of Ghost Rider, and it seems that we are heading towards a collision between Johnny and Danny. Johnny has seen the best that hell had to offer and has defeated them all in turn. Now he wants to see an end to his frustrations and the only way to do that would be to go face to face first with his brother and then with the power of Heaven above.

I cold tell you all about what has happened in each issue in depth but I think those broad strokes would wet any whistle ...

The reason I wanted to speak a little more in depth about this issue rather than talk about a few of my Anticipated Books is that 9 months ago the last thing I would have ever thought is that I would be excited about a Ghost Rider book. The last time I even really looked at a Ghost Rider book prior to Aaron taking over the book was in the 3rd grade, and I didn't really care for it then. I did read the first few issues of the Spirits of Vengeance series that spun out of the Rise of the Sons of Midnight event in 1992 but that was out of a different kind of appeal. You see I've never been impressed by motorcycles or muscle cars or characters who become flaming skeletons and wield chains and whatnot ... wasn't much for Spawn either. And to be honest I'm still not. What brought me to the title was Jason Aaron. What gets me excited about a new story arc is Tan Eng Huat. What really interests me is the character of Johnny Blaze, not the Spirit of Vengeance he becomes. The man in search for peace of mind, for an end to a life of violence. And that is what Aaron brings me, a man who does violent acts against those who wrong him but ultimately would rather build a shack and live out his days in the quiet.

Seriously if you aren't reading this book then I suggest you go out and give it a try. It is obviously something that Aaron has a lot of passion for and it has become something that I, in turn, have a great deal of passion for myself. If you have room in your budget and you are looking for a really great book that will bring you a great deal of entertainment then look no further. And if you want to get in from the beginning of Aaron's run you should be able to find the back issues without much effort or you can check out the upcoming trade paperback Hell Bent and Heaven Bound that collects issues 20-25 and comes out in November.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

What Do You Mean They're Not Superheroes?: Sneak Peek Reviews 09/16/2008

Titans #5
Written by: Judd Winick
Art by: Julian Lopez

For a while now I have been reading the new incarnation of the Titans book. Judd Winick has a really good feel for the characters as he has shown throughout the appearances of each of them in the books he has done in the past but ultimately something in the first 4 issues felt flat. Ian Churchill was the artist on the first issue and left, then Joe Benitez came on to pencil issues 2, 3, & 4. Julian Lopez has come on for this story arc. Dan DiDio has also come on to do some more hands on editing from the Executive Editor's chair. This is also the beginning of the second story arc of the series. I'm not sure which of these three events contributed the most to making this issue better than the previous 4 but I'll take whatever answer works. Whether it is rejuvenation thanks to a new artist, a better reigning in by a new editor, or just being more interested in the new arc rather than feeling underwhelmed by the starting story, Winick has come back on to a much more exciting form that we have all come to enjoy. So I think if you felt like this book was stagnating that you can rest assured knowing that things are starting to heat up!

War Machine: Weapon of S.H.I.E.L.D. #33
Written by: Christos Gage
Art by: Sean Chen

Starktech is down worldwide. Iron Man is useless, The Helicarriers have plunged into the sea, the technology provided by one of the world's leading minds to essential intelligence, military, and law enforcement agencies is now just so many paperweights. It must have seemed like such a good idea to arm those agencies with the best available technology. Sadly, the Skrulls knew all too well how much Earth's defenses relied upon the intelligence of her native son, Tony Stark, and figured out a way to shut it all down. What they didn't realize is that Tony is all about contingencies. When he rebuilt the War Machine suit for James Rhodes he did so without the use of Starktech. He used Stanetech and bleeding edge cybernetics tech from other corporations. He needed a contingency in case something like this ever happened. But he also knew that a threat that could take out all of Starktech might be something a bit more imposing than even the War Machine suit could handle ... so he built something that packed a little more punch. Make sure you check out this issue to see what is going to be stomping a whole in the Skrull offensive.

Greatest Hits #1
Written by: David Tischman
Art by: Glenn Fabry

David Tischmann is perhaps best known for being Howard Chaykin's co-writer on some of Chaykin's more interesting projects since 1999. First they penned Son of Superman together, then later they worked on American Century for Vertigo and most recently the two have worked together on the pair of Bite Club mini-series. Together they create interesting characters and unique situations that make for rather fun reading that never tries too hard to be more than it is. Enter Greatest Hits. I think this is the first thing that I have ever read that David Tishcman has ever written on his own. And I think that is the best he has done so far (not to speak poorly of the work that he has done with Chaykin). Add to the project the truly great art of Glenn Fabry, both on the cover and on the interiors, and you've pretty well assured that I will buy at least the first issue. But like I said I think that this is some of Tischman's best work. What we have here is basically the superhero analog to The Beatles, known as The Mates. 4 British crime fighters who got together in the late sixties to fight the good fight. Fast forward about 40 years and you'll find yourself face to face with Nick Mansfield, the grown son of one of the members of The Mates, a flash in the pan film maker trying to resuscitate his career, his agent's best idea? Do a documentary about your father's exploits in the world's most famous superhero team. Which would have seemed obvious if Nick's father wasn't such an unmitigated jerk. I assure you that if you check this book out that you are in for a fun ride.

Monday, September 15, 2008

ComicDorksCast Episode 032

(Download Directly: Right Click and choose "Save As..." and save locally on your computer)

Running Time: 01:19:41

  • 00:03:25 - The Criminal Revolution Rolls On!
  • 00:09:00 - Darren's Pick of the Week: Batman Confidential #21.
  • 00:14:07 - The end times are coming for the GCPD in Final Crisis: Revelations #2.
  • 00:23:11 - Rob's Pick of the Week: Secret Invasion #6.
  • 00:32:04 - Invincible #52 inspires us to say three words: Oh. My. God.
  • 00:49:49 - Scott's Pick of the Week: 100 Bullets #95.
  • 00:57:40 - Best Book of Last Month:
  • Rob: Thunderbolts Vol 1 Faith in Monsters TP
  • Darren: Stray Bullets Vol 1 The Innocence of Nihilism
  • Scott: Madman Vol 1 TP
  • 01:07:29 - Brief Mentions
  • 01:11:44 - Anticipated Books

If you have any questions or comments drop us a line at: Comicdorkscast@gmail.com

Go to www.FantasyShopOnline.com and check out the growing community on the Message Boards.

Check out our website at ComicDorksCast.Blogspot.com.

The Music at the opening and closing of the show was: "The Commander Thinks Aloud" by The Long Winters.

The Best Books You Didn't Read this Week, Issue 8

Written by: Peter J. Tomasi
Art by: Luke Ross

The Blackest Night grows ever closer and the menace of the Sinestro Corps remains ever present. A lot of people started picking this title up when the Sinestro Corps War event was going on but not everyone stuck with the title after the crossover was finished and boy howdy did they make a mistake. We have seen Mongul wielding multiple Yellow Power Rings, we have also seen the home planet of Mongul's frequent weapon "Black Mercy", We have seen a quintet of Sinestro Corps members who hunt and kill the family members of Green Lantern Corps Rookies and steal their eyes. We have seen the terrifying change in the Guardian who stood toe to toe with The Anti-Monitor and will live scarred for the rest of her life. We have seen the birth of the first ever Lantern Bar, Warriors. But most importantly we have been seeing the growing camaradarie and brotherhood growing between two of the greatest Green Lanterns to ever live, Guy Gardener, and Kyle Rayner. This has been an incredibly fun book that everyone should still be following.

Written by: Phil Hester
Art by: Michael Broussard

I have never been the biggest Top Cow fan. Marc Silvestri wasn't my favorite of the Image Founders and thus a house style based on his own never really grabbed me. Recently however there have been some titles and concepts that have really caught my attention. Bringing Ron Marz onto Witchblade for a 5 year long run was a smart decision, the growing talent of Stepan Sejic has been something worth watching, the idea of The Top Cow Pilot Season involves fans in a way that I think is incredibly interesting, but perhaps most importantly they brought one of my favorite current writers in the industry on to one of the only characters they have that has ever interested me. Back when they relaunched the series with Paul Jenkins writing and Dale Keown on art I decided to check it out and was pretty pleased with it for about 7 or 8 issues, but I eventually lost interest and stopped reading. Then I hear from an interview that Phil Hester is going to be taking on the third relaunch of the title. I have loved pretty much everything Phil has ever worked on, whether it was in his capacity as an incredibly talented artist or in his growing portfolio of incredibly engaging writing projects. I really think that this issue was amazing and that Michael Broussard has grown out of the house style and has become more than a Silvestri clone. This book is a quiet winner. Check it out.

DYNAMO 5 #16
Written by: Jay Faerber
Art by: Mahmud A. Asrar

With the recent announcement that Noble Causes will be ending with issue 40 it has become more and more important that people start checking out the other books that Jay Faerber is currently producing. So, my suggestion is to start with Dynamo 5. With two trade paperbacks already available it's easy enough to jump onto the title and start enjoying the incredible characters and relationships that are present in this title. Imagine, if you can, if a character like Superman who has a little less commitment to his marriage ... who had some illegitmate children ... and then died ... in the bed of one of his mistresses. His widow looks at the city around her and realizes that it needs protectors, and that only the offspring of her husband, the recently deceased lothario, will do. So she exposes them to the same radiation that gave Captain Dynamo his powere in the hopes that they will become super-humans as well, and it works, they each get one of his powers. And for a while they work together as a team. But Maddie's interference causes the group to disperse and now Scrap has put together a new Dynamo 5 and protects the city as best they can. CHECK THIS BOOK OUT!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Brief Mentions: Damned: Prodigal Sons #3 (of 3)

Damned: Prodigal Sons #3 (of 3)
Written by: Cullen Bunn
Art by: Brian Hurtt

Yeah ... it was late. It was probably supposed to be out back in June or so. But when it comes to comics running late it certainly isn't the worst offender of the bunch. And in the grand scheme of things I would rather have a wrap-up to a story as interesting, complex, and ultimately satisfying as this one was late, than an unsatisfying, simple, and boring on time.

Cullen has all the markers of an up and coming writer, give him time and point people toward his books and there is no reason that he shouldn't become as popular and as recognized as someone like Steve Niles. Honestly Cullen writes with the passion and excitement of a new writer but the skill and finely honed craft of a veteran. He manages to leave you with just the right amount of answers to feel good about what you've read but leaves you with just enough new questions and unanswered questions that you can't wait to come back for more.

Brian Hurtt also has unquestionable talent. His cartooning is amazing and his story telling skills are impeccable. His characters are incredibly expressive and emote better and more accurately than most other artists working in the industry. His work has matured ever since he first started working in the comics industry and with each and every project you can see him become more talented and more open to experiment. I have loved his work ever since I first saw it in the incredibly underrated and unfortunately all to brief series from DC's shortly lived Focus imprint, Hard Time. If you like his work I highly recommend you go and check out the work he has done with Nunzio DeFilippis and Christina Weir, especially Three Strikes and Skinwalker.

If you have never read Damned then I highly, highly, highly recommend that you go check out the tradepaperback for the first mini-series "Three Days Dead" and witness one of the coolest independent releases of 2006 (through 2007). Follow the (mis)adventures of Eddie as he deals with the criminal underworld (the criminal underworld where he lives is pretty well populated with demons ... 2 of the three mobs are all demons as a matter of fact), tries to live his cursed life (really, one of the demon families cursed him), and faces death at every turn (again, really ... he seems to be in fatal situations all the time). (Un)Fortunately when Eddie is killed he doesn't stay dead. If anyone touches his corpse he comes back to life, just with a new set of scars. Unfortunately whoever touched Eddie's corpse dies the same way Eddie had. Follow along as he tries to understand the nature of where he goes when he dies as well as tries to make what goes on in his life make sense.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Blog Log # 2 (Quote of the Week)

Well hello there again comic lovers, how you be? I guess you all know how great a week it was for comics? (It seems we may have a war on our hands.) Due to the amount of great words I read this week I couldn’t pick just one quote; therefore, this week we shall have a few. Now LETS… GET… READY… TO… MUMBLE! “Don’t mean to poop on the parade, but we still don’t know who we can trust here.” “Do not fight a fight you can’t win. Do not fight a fight against yourself.” “Love your family and live your life and wait for what is to come.” “AVENGEEERRSSS! ASSEMBLE!” Blog… Not… Over… Yet! “Precious. Human life isn’t precious. Not in general—Not everyone. People risk their lives everyday. They kill each other. If they don’t think their lives are important, why should I?” Thems big words for such a small fella. (Not talking smack, I like my brains inside my head.) Can I get a drum roll for the final quote of the week, please? And what would a blog log be without a dick or fart joke? (I don’t know, you tell me.) Since, I’ve touched on the poop angle here is the other side of the coin. “I still feel we should be covering our privates.” (Me too!) Surprise, Surprise, The Goon came out but did not make the cut. Tell me, have you seen any horsemen (or like four) lately?
– Rob

Thursday, September 11, 2008

What I’m Reading Now: The Fly in the Ointment

When entering the world of comics there is so many comics that are out there it can sometimes become overwhelming. One particular area for me personally that was a maze of confusion and chaos was X-books. Upon entering comics, I was in the midst of infinite crisis and civil war. I, for a year or so, was almost an exclusive DC buyer. Just the sheer amount of titles that were considered X books blew my mind such as: Young X-Men, X-Force, Wolverine: First Class, Wolverine, Witchblade & Wolverine, Uncanny X-Men, Ultimate X-Men, New Exiles, New X-Men, Cable, Astonishing X-Men, X-Factor and many, many more. As I grew more and more into a comic lover, I began to embrace Marvel and came to love Captain America, Daredevil, and Punisher but X-books continue to scare me. I didn’t even know where to start. Well I jumped in headfirst and started reading Uncanny and Astonishing X-men. Which were good and all but just really not what I had expected or was hoping for. And then my good associate Capt. Cletus asked if I had read X-factor. I was unfamiliar by the book so I picked up the first installment of the third volume. It was a six issue miniseries entitled X-Factor: Madrox written by Peter David and art by Pablo Raimondi. I fell in love with this book. X-Factor is a great book with crime, mystery, suspense, comedy, and action. The lead character Jamie Madrox, the multiple-man, quickly became my favorite mutant in the marvel universe. He is not simply a man who splits into other people, but each individual character takes on a personality of Jamie, ranging from self-loathing to the incredibly heroic. Though Jamie is considered the main character, this book is also very much a team book. The X-factor team is composed of Jamie Madrox, M (Monet Yvette Clarisse Maria Therese St. Croix), Rictor, Siryn, Layla Miller (she knows stuff), Rahne Sinclair (Wolfsbane), and Guido Carosella (Strong Guy). This cast allows for great scenes and dialogue and Peter David intertwines comedy and story telling very well. Though the story is great, there are a few setbacks to the series. The series has a rotating cast of artists who ranged from great to not so great and the book is also plagued with tie-ins from Marvel spanning events such as Civil War and Secret Invasion. But all negatives aside I say with great confidence that this is the best X-Book on the shelves and has been since its premiere in 2005. This X-book seemingly came from nowhere, it was the fly in the ointment, the spanner in the works, it was the x-factor.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Living Up to Expectations: …WTF?!?!?!

Invincible #52
Written By: Robert Kirkman
Art By: Ryan Ottley

Robert Kirkman, why? WHY?!?!?!?! Issue 52 of Invincible hit the shelves this week and any week an Invincible issue is released it is the first comic I read. This issue had comedy, action, and drama. We see the reappearance of the Crusher Twins (two of my favorite characters from the series) as they try to control the world’s communication through some evil and maniacal plan. It is up to invinciboy (Invincible) and Kid Omni-Man to deliver justice…severe justice. Kirkman delivers an excellent fight scene with some very, very, very shocking panels. The relationship between Invincible and Kid Omni-man also continues to grow in this issue. Kirkman leaves us with a cliffhanger that forces us to redefine what a true hero is. Though the story, as usual, is amazing and continues to hold the greatest superhero title the art in this issue was stunning. As soon as I think Ryan Ottley’s art cannot possibly get any better it always seems to with every issue. This is another great story from the image team of Kirkman and Ottley and once again I count down the days until the next issue.

Young Liars #7
Written By: David Lapham
Art By: David Lapham

There comes a time in every comic lovers life when he or she must step back after reading and issue and just simply state…WTF. In this case…David Lapham…WTF?!?! Just when you thought if midgets cutting genitals off was as crazy as this book could get, then go buy Young Liars #7 and be proven wrong. Young Liars, a story that I have loved and cherished since issue 1, has truly taken a turn for the… I don’t know. Issue #7 is the first part in the Spiders from Mars story arc. Though David Bowie is not in this issue, as messed up as this issue was…I think…I think I liked it. It could be that David Lapham’s previous projects, such as Stray Bullets, has done irreversible damage to by brain but all in all, I really liked this issue. I would tell you what its about but I (a) don’t want to ruin for you because believe me you need to read this issue and (b) I don’t even know what I would say and if I did say anything you wouldn’t get it. Sorry. But story aside, I have always been a big fan of Lapham’s art and this issue easily proves why. It’s an art style that is so familiar that when I read anything by him I always think of his previous works. I highly recommend this issue and just be prepared for what you may see. Good Luck and Godspeed.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

What Do You Mean They're Not Superheroes?: Sneak Peek Reviews 09/09/2008

Stephen King's The Stand: Captain Trips #1 (of 5)
Written by: Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa
Art by: Mike Perkins

I will admit that I have never read Stephen King's post-apocalyptic/horror epic "The Stand", I have vague memories of having watched a night or so of the mini-series in 1994 but being an imaginative child there was something about it that shook me to my core and kept me from being able to enjoy the story. So this adaptation by playwright/writer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (Nightcrawler, Marvel Knights 4, Angel: Redemption) is my first true exposure to the story. I think that Aguirre-Sacasa is a fantastic choice to adapt a story of such epic proportions and with such a large cast as he has plenty of experience writing for the stage and dealing with lots of characters having to share the same stage. Mike Perkins (Captain America, Ruse, Union Jack) does an incredible job depicting characters all of whom need to look distinctly different since they are all "just people" and without distinct costumes to discern one character from the next it takes an artist of great talent. The cover by Lee Bermejo (Joker, Lex Luthor – Man of Steel) is stunningly well rendered and most assuredly makes you want to pick the book up and read it. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the story of The Stand this is the story of a truly frightening disease (that seems to be a military bio-weapon) that wipes out a good portion of the American population and we follow the survivors as they attempt to make one last Stand against the darkening skies and terrifying world before them. I was honestly really taken by this story and I had no intention whatsoever of picking up the series ... this first issue changed my mind. I cannot recommend this series more highly. Surely a must read for all.

X-Men: Magneto – Testament #1 (of 5)
Written by: Greg Pak
Art by: Carmine Di Giandomenico

Marvel Knights has really been rolling out some great stories lately. Ever since it became an imprint exclusively for mini-series they have been cranking out some really intriguing stories about all different kinds of characters. Greg Pak is probably best known for his work on Planet Hulk, World War Hulk and his current run on The Incredible Hercules, he has penned a really engaging story here. Carmine Di Giandomenico worked on the underrated Marvel Knights mini-series Daredevil: Battlin' Jack Murdock, and in this issue his pencils look strikingly like Tim Sale. Here we see the story of Max Eisenhardt, a young man who is crushing on a young woman named Magda.Max is the top of his class in almost all his subjects. He isn't much of an athlete but he is the best of all of the students at hurling the javelin. One of his teachers tells him that he is an gifted student with immense promise. His father is a jeweler who fought in a war and was awarded many medals and was considered by his government to be a hero, his eyes are failing him and his work has become more difficult but he does his best and takes the help of his younger brother Erich. Max's uncle Erich has a girlfriend and gives him girl advice. His mother dotes over him, his sister works at a flower shop. Everything sounds pretty good for Max ... but it's not. Because Max lives in Germany, and it's 1935. His father fought in World War I. His Uncle is dating a gentile woman. His sister passes for gentile. Everyone at his school thinks that he must be cheating to be so good. You are probably wondering why there is a story at all about Max Eisenhardt ... you don't know Max by name do you? No, of course not. He goes by another name these days. You probably know him better by Erik Magnus Lehnsherr.

Dragon Prince #1
Written by: Ron Marz
Art by: Lee Moder

Well, this certainly was not what I was expecting. That doesn't by any stretch of the imagination mean that it was bad. I just wasn't expecting what I found within these pages. I think that Lee Moder is a rather talented artist. He does a really admirable job of crafting some interesting looking characters and all in all he has a great sense for pacing a page and is a very talented visual storyteller. But the promise of the Jeff Johnson cover held such a great place in my heart. Since Johnson and Ron Marz worked together on the incredibly fun series Way of the Rat by the now defunct CrossGen comics company, I have longed to see them work together again. So there is some measure of disappointment but it is tempered because Moder does such a good job. The cover also has a lot of disparate images working on it. A mountain range with dragons flying about and a cliff side monastery style building. Also featured on the cover is a bald Asian man in older style clothing, an Asian man in a black leather jacket, a fetching young woman in a sweater, and a young boy wearing headphones around his neck ... so your best guess is as good as mine was when I cracked the cover and dove into the story within. The first several pages are really engaging and ultimately the story was interesting enough for me to want to see where it is going. I think though that there could have been a much cooler story to be told but I trust Ron Marz and so I will follow along. Let's just hope my trust isn't misplaced this time around.

Monday, September 8, 2008

ComicDorksCast Episode 031

(Download Directly: Right Click and choose "Save As..." and save locally on your computer)

Running Time: 01:18:16

  • 00:02:43 - It's no secret, Secret Six #1 was a favorite among the Dorks.
  • 00:12:01 - Rob's Pick of the Week: Green Lantern #34.
  • 00:23:54 - Tony Was Right! And Invincible Iron Man #5 was too.
  • 00:33:34 - Darren's Pick of the Week: Dead of Night: Devil Slayer #1.
  • 00:41:37 - The Boys #22 was chock full of shocking revelations.
  • 00:51:15 - Scott's Pick of the Week: El Diablo #1.
  • Best Issue of Last Month:
  • 00:57:59 - Rob: X-Factor: Layla Miller (One Shot).
  • 01:02:54 - Darren: Welcome to Hoxford #1.
  • 01:05:14 - Scott: Antoine Sharp, The Atheist #1. (Check out Scott's article all about the first trade paper back, Belief in The Atheist)
  • 01:07:00 - Brief Mentions
  • 01:09:46 - Anticipated Books
If you have any questions or comments drop us a line at: Comicdorkscast@gmail.com

Go to www.FantasyShopOnline.com and check out the growing community on the Message Boards.

Check out our website at ComicDorksCast.Blogspot.com.

The Music at the opening and closing of the show was: "5 Years Time" by Noah & The Whale.

The Best Books You Didn't Read this Week, Issue 7

End League #4
Written by: Rick Remender
Art by: Mat Broome & Eric Canete

The world has ended. The Super-heroes lost. The Super-villains have taken over. Thor has been lobotomized and has killed the most powerful force for good in all of the world, Astonishman. With little choice but to do whatever it takes to survive more and more of the heroes spread further and further apart as their one greatest shot at re-taking Mjolnir, what might have been the only thing that could have leveled the playing field, has perished. More important than the story this is the first issue with pages pencilled by Eric Canete, the new ongoing artist for the series, and thus with this issue we go from a bi-monthly shipping schedule (which Mat Broome for all his talents could not manage to stay on) to a monthly shipping schedule and one of my early picks for best new ongoing series of the year might actually get 8 or 9 issues out before the year is up. Rick Remender is one of the most exciting new creators working today and if you aren't into what he's doing with Fear Agent, or Punisher War Journal then maybe just maybe you need to check out his mix of super-heroes and "Lord of the Rings" style epic fantasy.

Manhunter #34
Written by: Marc Andreyko
Art by: Michael Gaydos

Kate goes toe-to-toe with the whole of the Suicide Squad and allow me to assure you that if nothing else she gets some much needed stress relief out of the way in her combat with Multi-Plex. There is a pretty big twist to be found in this issue so I will do my best to avoid spoiling it and instead focus on the creators behind this book. Marc Andreyko is one of the most underrated writers currently working at DC and to be honest I think that he might be one of the most underrated writers working in the industry, this guy has just as much going for him as creators like Geoff Johns, Brian Bendis, Greg Rucka, and Ed Brubaker ... all it is going to take is that one big moment for everyone to start paying attention. Allow me to assure you that you should get in now while the getting is good and you don't have to fret about tracking down all the hard to find issues and out of print trade paperbacks. So go get Torso and the first 4 volumes of Manhunter while the getting is good. And if you want great art with your Super-hero books then look no further. Michael Gaydos is perhaps best known for his work with Brian Michael Bendis on Alias but if more people would pay attention to the work he is doing here they would see that he is doing some of the very best work of his career. Great characters who all look distinctly different and all look distinctly great.

Jonah Hex #35
Written by: Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray
Art by: J.H. Williams III

I LOVE WESTERNS! I do. And really there isn't a higher quality western currently on the shelves than Jonah Hex. Each issue is completely stand alone and tells a story with a beginning middle and end. The character of Jonah Hex is incredibly compelling, deeply complex, and a bastard through and through. I assure you that if you check out just one issue of this book that you will find yourself one fine story with incredibly interesting artwork. This issue in particular features the incredible artwork of J.H. Williams III and a story the likes of which you would expect an artist like J.H. to undertake. Jonah fights off a band of ruffians with the help of a posse from town only to be invited to the sheriff's home for dinner ... but the sheriff ... he has ulterior motives. No one illustrates a hallucination better than J.H. Williams III and allow me to assure you that if you decide to just pick up this issue that you will not be disappointed.