Sunday, February 28, 2010



I just got back from Medieval Times with the Mrs. and it was awesome! Nothing better than watching a bunch of actors pretend to be knights and fight. If you've never been there it's like 15 minutes from Staten Island and worth the entrance fee.

Now, is everyone happy that the snow is finally gone? I know I am, just in time for the CHOKER TOUR KICKOFF signing on Wednesday. Ben McCool and Ben Templesmith were both really cool guys and I'm really happy I got to meet Templesmith and see McCool again. I got a sweet sketch from Templesmith and my brother and I may have inadvertently given McCool an idea for something in an issue of Choker!
I'm reviewing it this week! FINALLY!

Did you make it down for the Alterna Comics Fourth Anniversary? I did. I got to meet a bunch of the guys I'd never met before and I got a copy of Stephen Lindsay's new book "Massive Awesome", which I'm also reviewing this week.

Speaking of reviewing, this week was HUGE!!! so many books, so little time, hence why this is late. Rest assure it won't happen again.

Marvel dropped some serious "SIEGE" heat along with "FALL OF THE HULKS" and "NECROSHA", while DC blew up the universe with some major "BLACKEST NIGHT" action.




Another reason why I held off this week was because this issue was huge and I really didn't want to spoil it for anyone. No matter what I said about this issue, I'd be giving something away that you'd rather read yourself.
Amidst all the chaos that's going down in Coast City right now between all the Black Lanterns and the heroes, a shock is revealed! Earth is actually the birthplace of life, not OA! The Guardians have been lying to everyone since day one. This sends a big shock to everyone because is everything the Guardians done and said all just been one big lie?
Another thing we learn which I saw hinted at big time in "Green Lantern" last issue was the concept of the Spectral Entities. We already knew about Ion being the entity of Will, Parallax being the entity of Fear and now it's revealed that the entity of the upcoming "White Lantern Corps" is actually called the Entity and is the embodiment of the living light bestowed upon the universe.
Sinestro doesn't take any of this well and forces his way into the living being as it's being attacked by Nekron, empowering himself as the first WHITE LANTERN!
This issue was huge and I really seen why DC is making this an eight issue. I can't wait to see how DC expects to outdo themselves after this.



This issue is a special issue so to speak. The reason I say this is because all the other heroes involved in this story have either been in GL, GLC or some tie in of their own such as JSA or Superman. This actually carries the story of Ollie becoming a Black Lantern over into his own title just like "Adventure Comics" did with Superboy. As we've seen in "Adventure Comics", Ollie is trapped within himself and can't stop himself from fighting and potentially killing his friends and family.
This issue really deals with the fact that Ollie and Dinah have gotten back together but at the same time she still holds the grudge of his cheating on her. Case in point, Ollie told her that he only cheated once and the Black Lantern reveals that he's been around the block more than twice. This issue also deals with the fact that Connor Hawke and Speedy have both been his protege's but at the same time he doesn't want to teach them. All this comes out and they're all lost as what to do until they finally come together and take a stand, encasing Ollie in ice and that's where the issue leaves off.
I want the last issue of "Blackest Night" to come out already so we can find out what happens to him!

4 out of 5 Adulterating Archers.


This being the last tie-in issue dealing with "Blackest Night" and the last issue of the miniseries itself, it had had a lot of weight on it's shoulders.
Our heroes now at the Star Labs in NYC battle the re-animated Black Lantern Superman Earth-2 while Mr. Terrific struggles to create a light weapon to kill them all. In truth this series was almost unnecessary, this story could have been integrated into the core "Blackest Night" book and the outcome of it all really didn't make much of a difference aside from re-killing long dead characters brought back to harass other characters. Mr. Terrific succeeds in his creation of a light bomb but can't reproduce it because the pieces were unique and he can't recreate the process.
This was a let down but it's over so there's no real reason to get annoyed.

2 out of 5 I can't remake it.

Now to the Marvel Universe!



The team finds themselves again being led by a pre-recorded holographic image of Norman Osborn sending them into another fight without any intel. Quickly and to the point Osborn tells them they are going into The Norse Armory where they are to steal the Spear Of Odin. The spear can be picked up by anyone unlike Thor's hammer.
Ghost shows up and realizes that Osborn is setting the whole thing up and sends out the information to the only person that can do some good with it Amadeus Cho.
The T-Bolts make it onto Asgard and get into the Armory, where they show their true colors as thieves and criminals when they see all the gold and jewels stashed away.
After finding the spear, who shows up to ruin their day but The Mighty Avengers!
I really like what Jeff Parker is doing with this team of Thunderbolts. His creation of dissension among the ranks really makes the team that much interesting because they aren't friends and they're not in this because they wanted to be so when one of them gets out of line it makes for great conflict.

5 out of 5 "Can we get the Zeus over here?"

THOR # 607

The book everyone's been waiting for considering Asgard is/was Thor's home. This issue is actually the total opposite of what I thought it was going to be. I thought it was going to focus more on the Asgardians battling back Osborn's forces and Thor smashing a few heads but it really fills in more blanks from the core book along with adding the surprise element of the aptly named Thor clone "RAGNAROK".
The issue starts off with The Asgardians being warned of the coming of Osborn, then Loki's dissension and betrayal of his people and how he really helped make sure they were unaware of what was coming their way.
We then see two Broxton cops letting Volstagg go after helping him make a YOUTUBE video proclaiming his innocence. This just goes to show that people are starting to see Norman Osborn for what he really is and not what he says he is.
Next issue, Thor vs. his clone Ragnarok!



Taskmaster takes center stage yet again and this time doesn't get the reaction he thought he would in doing so. After taking down Thor with Osborn and other, Taskmaster is put down by Osborn that he doesn't belong where he is and that he needs to get back to work. Taskmaster takes this to heart big time and goes on a virtual killing spree back on the floating isle.
Back at Camp HAMMER, the Avengers Underground attack the base and get to fight the Hood head on. Night Thrasher is given the choice of the Hood bringing back his brother the original Night Thrasher if he just kills Tigra.
The lines are really being drawn in the sand and sides are beginning to take shape in some really odd ways. What's next is my question.

5 out of 5 "Norman, you might want to turn around."


This issue is a backup story leading into the first issue of "SIEGE". I'm really unhappy with these "SIEGE" tie-ins regarding this book so far. I understand Bendis is limited for space with the story and wants to get out certain points leading into other things but this just isn't working for me. This issue picks up the battle between The Hood's gang and the New Avengers as well as Steve and Bucky fighting HAMMER troops in the ashes of the Avengers Brooklyn base.
The only real redeeming part of this story was at the end where Nick Fury shows up with the Secret Warriors and The New Avengers all jock Steve Rogers being back for real. Didn't half of them appear in "Captain America: Reborn"? Do people communicate in the Marvel Universe? Wouldn't this wind up on someone's twitter or something?

2 out of 5 get on with it already!


The fates have use of Daken and whether he knows it or not he's going to help them. Daken is in Broxton hunting down Thor after he kicked ass and headed into the town. Throughout the issue, Daken has visions of the Fates talking to him telling them they need his help to get them back on Asgard and to get Asgard off earth so that Ragnarok can happen like it supposed to. Daken doesn't like being told what to do and refuses to help regardless of what they say can or will happen.
This is a very interesting take on a small part of the bigger story considering all of the Norse mythology there is, to finally see some of it eek it's way into the story is really cool. I'm curious as to what would happen if the Fates are denied and Ragnarok doesn't happen ever again? Is it cataclysmic in nature or does it just prevent the inevitable to happen a little later?

5 out of 5 "I'm no one's puppet!"

Over to the X-men's side of the universe to check in on what going down with "NECROSHA"


The final battle of Proteus and Magneto, winner takes all.
Another book that I feel really didn't need to be involved in a bigger story. After saving everyone using Psylocke's psy-knife, Rogue and company watch as Magneto takes on Proteus and annihilates him. It's a great progression of Magneto's character and his restored powers but as far as "NECROSHA" is concerned it does nothing for the story. The battle between the seemingly unstoppable Proteus and Magneto was awesome and made turning the page that much more interesting as an issue of X-MEN LEGACY.

2 out of 5 "He's gone for now!"


X-Force is on Necrosha, Warpath faces his death and Selene ascends to Godhood.
Faced with countless numbers of dead mutants all acting on Selene's command, X-Force has their mission cut out for them. They need to find Warpath and to kill Selene and everyone in their way.
With the knife returned to her, Selene begins the ceremony to finish her ascent into Godhood while killing and utilizing all the undead mutants as power batteries.
Released by his brother, Warpath with the aid of Vanisher, gather the other members of the team and the final stage is set.
I'm actually surprised with the way things turned with this crossover. At first I thought it was all just a cheap attempt to bring back dead characters but that was just the surface of an even bigger story. All along they were bound to feed the spell that would make Selene a god. My question is, what happens to the mutants that aren't on Genosha? Do they become a part of her also or are they spared? Do they get returned to "normal" after everything is said and done? all questions to be answered next issue with the last part of "NECROSHA"!

5 out of 5 "I took the tumor out of you in the future, you have syphilis!"



This issue really deals with Titania and her "daughter" Lyra, the She-Hulk from the future.
Red Hulk explains that all along she's been on his side and through out everything that's gone down it's all been planned that she would serve a certain purpose. The Intelligencia in their infinite wisdom didn't feel that "a hulk, would rife through their files." and completely missed that during his time with them, Red Hulk was bleeding information from their computers and making plans of his own.
They intended on using Titania in their plans from the beginning and Red Hulk wasn't going to let that happen without giving her his option, which was to fall in line with them and him and play both sides, when in reality she was on his side.
I love this storyline and I can't wait to see what happens next because whenever I think I've got it figured out, someone throws a curve ball.

5 out of 5 "and Doom messes with the occult too.."

NOW, some fresh new NUMBER ONES that came out that you should check out!


First off let me say I was pretty stoked to even get this book in my hands when I did. Stephen was driving down from Rochester on Friday for the Alterna signing on Saturday and the weather was being a biznatch. He was texting me asking me how the weather was as he was gearing up for his 5 hour drive down to Staten Island.
He made it and I met up with him and got my AUTOGRAPHED copy. I was so happy I read it on the way to my band's show.
I'll be honest, I love Stephen and his writing but even for a first issue, this really has to be one of his weaker works thus far. The story is about a piece of bacon named Bacon, who busts his buddy who's a pickle named Pickle that thinks he's a zombie out of jail. They head back to Bacon's house, his girlfriend leaves him and they get attacked by ninja's.
Again, I may eat my words, but I'm entitled to my opinion.

This issue lacks the conversational humor that I've grown to love about Stephen's writing. There are a few quips between characters such as when Bacon's girlfriend saying "Don't bother calling me loser" and Bacon replies "Loser!, heh, did you hear that? She said not to call her loser, but I totally called her loser."
It's funny but at the same time it didn't make me laugh like Laz calling Jesus "Jee Joo" in "Jesus Hates Zombies".
The fact that you're thrown into the thick of things without much back story on anyone really doesn't give you much to go on aside from a talking piece of bacon and a pickle that thinks he's a zombie. It's funny but you don't really get what's going on aside from a piece of bacon kicking ninja ass.

3 out of 5 "Haggiss"


Finally after waiting two weeks, I got my hands on it and had the privilege of getting both Templesmith and McCool to sign it.
The story takes place in Shotgun City, a twist between a 1930's gangland Chicago and New York in Blade Runner. Johnny Jackson, a private investigator is our main character. He hates his life, his job and everyone around him but he moves on.
There really isn't much else to say about the book because they don't give you anything else. McCool and Templesmith work really well off one another by letting Templesmith's art do most of the talking for you. There's so much going on in the background when Johnny heads out onto the streets of Shotgun City. In most cases the lack of information and plot is annoying and can turn a lot of people off to a book but in this case it makes the book that much better. You get to let your imagination run wild as to what case Johnny is talking about at the beginning or what vile and disgusting things are coming our way next issue.
This is the perfect marriage of two people named Ben on a comic book ever!
Go get your hands on a copy of this if you can because it's sold out at Diamond and that means unless the boys get to do another printing, you'll have to wait for the trade.

5 out of 5 DOUBLE DUMPS!

That's all for me folks!

Friday, February 26, 2010



Wow! The Choker Launch Party was absolutely amazing and we can't thank both Ben McCool and Ben Templesmith enough for coming to the store and launching their book with us. Of course we can't forget about all the great people that helped us make the event even better including the musical stylings of Captain Ahab & the Sea Crackens and the in-house cooking of Chef Rob Burmeister (CHOW/Black Dog). Alas, without you, our faithful customers, none of us would be here so thanks to all who attended! We hope you had as much fun as we did.

Last Saturday also brought about our first ever CBJ Olympics which was a fantastic time. We had 5 comic themed events, tons of prizes to give away and some very competitive competition! However there was one man who cleaned up at the events securing 3 out of the 5 gold medals and taking down our grand prize of a $100 Gift Certificate - Rene Palaguachi! He also walked away with about $100 worth of graphic novels and collections on top of all that!

The fun continues tomorrow with the Alterna Anniversary Comics Showcase happening all day. We've got a ton of great creators on their way from all over the Northeast ready to sign, sketch and have a great all around good time. They will have tons of books to sell including some pretty deep discounts. In addition, Stephen Lindsay's brand new book Massive Awesome #1 is available for the first time at this event, don't miss it!


The February fun doesn't end! On Saturday, February 27th we'll be hosting the fine folks at Alterna Comics for their anniversary, showcasing their many varied artists and writers. You'll see some old and new faces on this list and we're happy to have them all down for the event. Come down and try something new and support the lifeblood of the comics industry! Here's the complete list of creators:
  • Mike Bracco (Adam Wreck, Birth, Novo)
  • Mike Czerniawski (The Big Bad Book)
  • Nik Jajic (The Big Bad Book)
  • Stephen Lindsay (Jesus Hates Zombies)
  • Jeff McComsey (American Terror)
They'll be here stocked to the gills with all Alterna titles as well as original clothing and other goodies for you all the enjoy! This will be an all day event so feel free to come down at any point during the day to talk comics, pick up some great books, get em signed and pick up a sketch from the good boys at Alterna Comics!


Back by popular demand is our Pick-A-Statue Raffle! This will run until Wednesday, March 3rd. Raffles are $1 a ticket and you can buy as many as you like. One grand prize winner will be allowed to pick out any statue we have no matter what the cost! We're serious, give it a shot the most you can lose is $1!

Monday, February 22, 2010

By request of Mr. Socko Jones

So Socko loved that I wrote this poem so much that I decided to put it up here for all to read who actually check up on the CBJ website. This poem was handed out the day Blackest Night #1 came out at CBJ. Some of you may have done me the honors by grabbing a copy and reading it; if so, thank you kindly. This poem is based on and is in the voice of my all time favorite super hero (and if you read comics at all, the poem is an instant giveaway) Green Lantern. I include all the lines of the oath to begin each stanza and it includes Hal Jordan's history from child, to him first getting the ring, to Cyborg Superman destroying Coast City, Parallax, The Spectre, and Hal's return in Green Lantern: Rebirth. I hope you enjoy!

Emerald Knight

In brightest day, my father died.
I was a boy with excited eyes
and a smile slapped across my face
I grasped so tightly to the barricade
amongst the crowd of spectators
watching his plane. He let me
wear his pilot jacket, oversized.
It was his promise to return to ground
but on that day at Ferris Aircraft,
my father’s jet lit up the sky.

In blackest night, I made a vow
to grow in the tear soaked jacket
years later, I would meet a dying stranger.
He had a purple face, a blood stained face
with a whispered breath and weakened limbs
he outstretched a trembled hand
dropped an emerald ring
“no evil shall escape my sight”,
slowly stated from his lips
only if I had the will to never let fear in.

Let those who worship the clouds know
that the universe is my field to run my fingers through
like blades of grass in an endless valley
like a satellite roaming the galaxy
I have become an emerald
amongst endless sand and pebbles.
evil’s might would try me,
but the hero always wins
well…that’s what one would believe.

In darkest night, the darkness crept
in with the swiftness of a super man
with an iconic costume, recognizable
but with metal skin and a sinister grin.
In the amount of time it takes to blink
for a heart to make a solitary beat
despite all the planets I’ve passed through
I could not prevent my home,
Coast City, from becoming dust amongst my feet.

Beware my power, a desperate man
I became reduced to the likes of a beggar
dragging his forsaken body along the streets
a hero broken in madness, I became a killer.
But the light would never fade entirely
it would remain a flicker,
but the light would remain inside of me
and I would die a hero,
a legend with a tragic end
with final chapters left best to ignite torches
I would be reawakened blessed with a second chance
to redeem my life with a heart cleansed
with the brightness of a lantern.

-Babyface Jones!

Sunday, February 21, 2010



What a week, so many comics, so little time.
First off do not forget this Wednesday, Ben Templesmith and Ben McCool are going to be at the store signing their new book "CHOKER".

Then this weekend is filled with cool stuff to do. This Saturday come to the store and celebrate "Alterna Comics 4th Anniversary"!!

and while your at it come check out my band (The Grieving Process) after you visit with those ALTERNA-NERDS!

Now with all the reminders out of the way onto the comics!!

DC begins their final descent into "Blackest Night".

Marvel unleashes more about The Sentry and his ultimate involvement in "Siege" as well as "Fall Of The Hulks" picking up steam as it hits the ground running and everyone's favorite Doctor causes Wakanda some major pain.

First up to bat DC and some "Blackest Night" tie-in's.


The Black Lanterns taken care of by Mogo last issue, now the combined forces of Kyle Rayner and company have to deal with Red Lantern Guy Gardner. Guy was taken over by the Red Rage Ring after he thought Kyle was killed, now that Kyle was brought back by Natu's love for him, they must fight Guy in an attempt to expunge the Red Ring off his hand. Kyle is told that the only way for them to get the ring off Guy's hand is with the help of a Blue Lantern but their constructs won't hold Guy long enough for them to get anywhere near a Blue Lantern. This is where Mogo steps in and does a rapid detox of the Rage from Guy's system. Guy must face all the good and bad he's done in his life all at once while Mogo has leeches bleed him out and recycle his own blood.
Guy is saved and the Lanterns are called to Earth to battle Nekron for the final battle.
I can't wait for the final battle because all of the build up towards it has been amazing. Pete Tomasi has done an amazing job of creating power struggles for the corps using all the emotional spectrums. Truthfully, as excited about "Brightest Day" I'm almost saddened by the end of "Blackest Night".

5 out of 5 Guy getting pwned by Batman


Having been deputized and given the Blue Ring of Hope by Ganthet, the newly returned Barry Allen has been having a hard time acclimating to the use of the ring along with his powers as The Flash. Haunted by the recently deceased Bart Allen aka Black Lantern Kid Flash, the time traveling Black Lantern Reverse Flash and long time friend Black Lantern Solivar, Wally has his hands full and really needs the help of his friend Wally West aka The Flash.
While all this is going on The Rogues are battling their own as many of the fallen Rogues have returned, one in particular is Black Lantern Capt. Boomerang who was taken by his son Owen and is being fed in an attempt to return him to normal.
While battling Kid Flash, Wally joins him in some sort of speed force connection and he realizes that they can save him because they're all joined by the speed force.
During battle with The Black Lanterns, The Rogues take advantage of their risen comrades sudden interest in the body of Eobard Thawne the Reverse Flash who's currently in a coma but eventually makes him way back in time as a Black Lantern. While they are enamored by Thawne, Capt. Cold freezes the bunch and destroys them along with The Black Lantern Reverse Flash.
Barry connects with Bart and frees him of the Black Ring.
The Rogues find Owen Mercer and his father Capt. Boomerang and they take their revenge on the two.
This series leads into the new Flash series that's coming out after "Blackest Night".
I for one am really excited because it's going to be written by Geoff Johns. This series also takes place after Flash: Rebirth which concludes this week. I wasn't too happy about the flash-forward-flash-backward method between the two books but Johns did his magic and truly pulled it all off.

5 out of 5 Capt. Cold is the illest Rogue EVER!


To defeat The Black Lantern Spectre, Hal Jordan had to unleash Parallax and become his host once again. After invading the body of the Spectre, Parallax releases the real Spectre and destroys the Black Ring. In an attempt to use the Spectre for his own means, Atrocitus gives the Spectre the power of The Red Rage. After a quick explanation, The Spectre reveals that his is not the entity of rage.
Before Parallax has the chance to continue his assault, The Spectre with the love of Carol Ferris, separate the entity of fear from Hal Jordan. In doing so, before Sinestro can save his "master", Parallax is pulled off somewhere unknown to the heroes for now.
The Spectre attempts to pass judgement on Nekron but comes to find out that he cannot because Nekron has no soul and is darkness embodied.

This issue gives a hint that each and every Corps has an entity that they follow. We all knew that Parallax is the entity of fear, with the reveal that the Spectre isn't the entity of rage and his exact words to Atrocitus leading us to believe that there is more to the emotional spectrum than we've seen. Is the reason why the combined power of all the rings not enough to defeat Nekron because the Spectral Entities are the only ones with the power to push back the darkness? We'll just have to wait and see.

5 out of 5 I love Luthor as as Avarice Lantern.

Now over to the Marvel Universe...


If you haven't been reading the latest Black Panther series, I strongly suggest going and reading it before you even open this comic.
If you can't wait and you want to jump in head first I'll give you a quick recap.
T'challa became aware that there was some kind of dissension going on in Wakanda. He realized it was Dr. Doom helping the Desturi, a dissonant group of people that don't agree with the Wakandans and their laws. T'Challa fought Doom and lost. In doing so his sister Shuri was named Black Panther. She's been trying to unravel the mystery of her brother's attack and what was the meaning behind it. T'Challa in the meantime has been training and learning things he never would have as the Black Panther in an attempt to gain the upper hand on Doom.
Flash forward to now and the Desturi have control of Wakanda. Storm is on trial for being a witch and Doom is almost into the vault where the countries supply of Vibranium is stored.
This series is going to be massive. Any fan of Black Panther, Dr. Doom or the Marvel Universe in general will fall madly in love with this story.
Again, if you've never read Black Panther do yourself a huge favor and go check it out. It's an amazing story and leads up to this series.

5 out of 5 DOOM!

"Fall OF THE HULKS"!!!.......

HULK #20

After capturing Dr. Doom and Reed Richards, The Intelligencia continues to collect the greatest minds in the world, next on the list is T'Challa. The Red Hulk steps in to stop his abduction but is thwarted by the intervention of the visiting X-Men. After being beaten by the unlikely combined attacks of Red Ghost and his super apes along with the X-Men, The Red Hulk awakes to find that both Hank McCoy and T'Challa have been taken. A lengthy talk with Banner about how he doesn't need anyone or their help, reveals to the Red Hulk that he and his green counterpart are more alike than he ever knew.
Slowly but surely the pieces are falling into place and the Intelligencia are getting closer to having the combined minds of the "seven greatest minds". What are their ultimate plans? When are we going to find out the Red Hulks identity? What's next? Well, we'll just have to wait and see.

4 out of 5 smashed to death Super Apes.


The Red She-Hulk is attacking the Avengers trying to get Hank Pym and it's up to Banner and Skaar to save him. Quickly following their computer signal, Pym arrives at the Intelligencia's secret base and attacks the Leader and M.O.D.O.K.
As Banner and Skaar arrive and try to save the Avengers from Red She-Hulk, Pym shows up and fights them because he's picking up traces of The Red Hulk's radiation. Little does he know that The Leader has been feeding him the wrong information creating the image of Banner working with them all along.
After being infected by the Red She-Hulk with the Leader's "brain drain", Pym calls in all the Avengers to come and take down Banner, Skaar and Red She-Hulk. Able to escape while they focus on Skaar, Red She-Hulk vanishes with Pym adding him to the Intelligencia's stolen minds.
Later, Bruce leads a team of heroes that have lost someone important in their lives to save Betty Ross and to take down the Intelligencia. Little does Bruce know that Betty isn't anyone's captive and that the Intelligencia aren't even at the base they're attacking.
This just adds more excitement and depth to the storyline as people Banner has been friends with for years are turning their backs on him because he's not sharing his plans or the facts that he knows. The question is posed again and again who's more dangerous, The Hulk? or Bruce Banner the man?


Last but not least, "SIEGE"!


Last issue it was revealed that The Sentry was a drug addict who was looking for drugs when he happened across the secret formula that turned Bob Reynolds; drug addict into The Sentry; drug addict. It was also revealed that the Void has been around for sometime and that it may have potentially been around since the days of Jesus Christ.
This issue delves deeper into the relationship between Victoria Hand and Norman Osborn. Osborn has been coming apart like a cheap suit recently and Ms. Hand has taken notice and finally decided to take a stand for Norman by confronting him about his crumbling psyche. Her fears about him slowly becoming the Green Goblin are growing and she has a lengthy discussion with him about going to a Therapist and to talk about the things in his life that are eating at him. If only she really knew what Norman was doing behind everyone's back that's really getting under his skin. After she lays into him, Ms. Hand takes control of the "Avengers" as she finds "Ms. Marvel" banging her way through the other team members a direct insult to Osborn and HAMMER in general. After telling her to go to her room, "Ms. Marvel" mouths off and gets blasted with a stunner by Ms. Hand.
Meanwhile, the skies over Manhattan darken as The Void has taken control over The Sentry since his wife Lindy blew off his head. Norman races out to talk to him and realizes that this is just a temper tantrum towards Lindy and her growing hatred and fear of him. Norman then explains that if he doesn't stop what he's doing that he's not going to stop anyone from killing him. Reed Richards, Dr. Doom, Tony Stark are all capable of killing The Sentry and if he doesn't stop he wont prevent them from doing so. Norman than promises Sentry/Void that "I've got something worth your vision of the world".
Can it be that during "SIEGE #2" that the Void was in control of the Sentry and it wasn't Bob Reynolds tearing Ares apart?
I can honestly say that after re-reading this issue and giving it serious thought that I really like this concept of the dual personalities with The Sentry. I really like how before Osborn was a bully in control of the weak kid but now the roles are reversing and we find Osborn making negotiations quicker than challenging his opponent.


that's all for me folks!

Friday, February 19, 2010



In honor of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver we will be holding a similar competition on Saturday, February 20th - the first ever CBJ Comic Olympics! What the hell am I talking about? What kind of crazy idea is this now? Let me tell you. On that day starting at 9:00pm we'll be hosting a variety of different comic themed competitions and events such as Long Box Lifting, Issue Sorting, Bag & Board Time Trial and many more! Prizes will be given out to all winners and participants! If you're interested please RSVP with us at the store or via e-mail. Please make sure that you register before 8:00pm on February 20th so that we have a good idea of what to expect, but if you can call or e-mail us well beforehand. There will be a special discount of 25% off for everyone who attends. This should be interesting to say the least so be sure not to miss it!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Retro Review – On The Beach (1959)

One of the staples of Science Fiction, in both literature and film, is the Post-Apocalyptic , or “end of the world” story. Films like Mad Max, Escape From New York, The Omega Man, The Stand, and even Resident Evil all fall into this category. The more recent films in this sub-genre go to great lengths to show the viewer the devastation and ruin of the planet. We are shown destroyed cities, wrecked bridges, giant tidal waves, and the occasional Mutant horde. All of these images are intended to elicit a strong feeling of empathy for the doomed human race. Sometimes this works very well as in The Stand. Other times it is just a bunch of high gloss special effects, as in Deep impact, with no real emotional ties.

In fact, as strong argument can be made that the most emotionally compelling Post-Apocalyptic films do NOT show much (if any) of the external destruction and instead focus on the impact on individual human lives. This latter approach brings to mind such films as The Day The Earth Caught Fire, The World, The Flesh, and The Devil, Testament...and

On The Beach.

On The Beach is a film shot in 1959 and is based on Nevil Shute’s 1957 novel. When I was in High School and the Cold War was still a part of everyday life, the threat of nuclear war was very real. Shute’s novel was required reading for students, not only in the United States but all over the world. The film, which starred Gregory Peck, Ava Gardner, Anthony Perkins and Fred Astaire, stayed very close to the spirit of the novel.

The story is set in the near future in the months following World War III. The conflict has devastated the most of the world, polluting the atmosphere with nuclear waste and killing all human life. While the nuclear bombs were confined to the northern hemisphere, global air currents are slowly carrying the fallout to the southern hemisphere. The only part of the planet still habitable is Australia.

From Australia, survivors detect an incomprehensible signal originating from the United States. With hope that some life has remained in the contaminated regions, one of the last American nuclear submarines, USS Sawfish, placed by its captain under Australian naval command, is ordered to sail north from its port of refuge in Melbourne, headquarters of the Australian Navy to try to contact whomever is sending the signal. The American captain, Dwight Towers (Gregory Peck), leads the operation, leaving behind a woman of he has recently begun seeing, Moira Davidson (Ava Gardner).

The Australian government makes arrangements to provide its citizens with suicide pills and injections, so that they will be able to avoid prolonged suffering from the fallout once it arrives. One of the film's poignant dilemmas is that of Australian naval officer Peter Holmes (Anthony Perkins), who has a baby daughter and wife, Mary (Donna Anderson), who is in denial about the impending disaster. Because he has been assigned to travel north with the Americans to search for signs of life, a trip expected to take several weeks, Peter must try to explain to Mary how to euthanize their baby and kill herself with the lethal pills should he be unable to return in time. Mary, however, reacts badly, almost violently, at the prospect of killing her daughter and herself.

After sailing to the Arctic Ocean, the expedition members determine that radiation levels are intensifying and that life near the Poles will also shortly be impossible. On the way back, they stop at San Francisco. The views through the periscope indicate what they have seen elsewhere; there are no signs of life, and minimal or no damage to buildings. One crewman, who is from San Francisco, jumps ship to spend his last hours in his hometown. After first attempting to convince the crewman to return, Towers then accepts his decision.

Sawfish then travels to an abandoned oil refinery, where they discover, although the city's residents have long since perished from radiation poisoning, the electric power is still on-line. The ship's communications officer is sent ashore in a radiation suit to investigate. The mysterious signal is the result of a Coke bottle being nudged by a window shade teetering in the breeze and occasionally hitting a telegraph key. Bitterly disappointed, the submariners return to Australia to live out the time that remains before the fallout arrives and kills everyone.
The characters make their best efforts to enjoy what time and pleasures remain to them before the end. Scientist Julian Osborne (Fred Astaire) and others organize a dangerous motor race that results in the apparent violent deaths of several participants. Moira remarks on the apparent senselessness of the race, but when she asks Osborne why he is taking part, he responds, "because I want to" -- apparently sufficient reason given the circumstances.
Prior to the submarine voyage to America, Towers had remarked to Moira about his enjoyment of the silence and relaxation of his pastime of fishing. During his absence, Moira uses her friendship with government officials to 'move up' the fishing season so Dwight will get one more chance to fish. With Towers now apparently accepting the death of his wife and children, they embark on a weekend trip. Unfortunately, the fishing stream is anything but silent and relaxing, as raucous visitors turn the outing into a fiasco. Retreating to the resort for the night, Dwight and Moira make love (in a 1960’s movie sort of way) inside the dark hotel room, as outside, a gathering storm howls.

Returning to Melbourne, Towers is informed one of his crew members has developed radiation sickness. The deadly radiation has arrived. When he asks the ships doctor “Why him/ Why now?. The Doctor snaps back that they won’t all just fall over in rows. He then observes that one of the first signs of radiation sickness is irritability. The end is definitely near.
Some citizens seek spiritual guidance from religious leaders. They hang a banner. It says:

"There Is Still Time ... Brother".

Osborne, proud and satisfied after winning the auto race, seals himself and the car, engine running, inside a garage to set up his suicide by exhaust poisoning. Others line up outside hospitals to receive their suicide pills. Later, Mary Holmes becomes emotionally unbalanced and must be placed under sedation. However, she regains lucidity and she and Peter share a tender moment recalling how they met “On the Beach”. Mary decides that she has been "foolish and impractical" and asks her husband to "take care" of her and their daughter. Peter makes tea for his wife and drops laces it with the suicide pills.

Dwight wants to stay with Moira, but his remaining crew wants to head for home and die in the U.S. In the end, Captain Towers chooses not to remain with Moira but rather to lead his crew in a final attempt to make it back to the States. Moira watches from the shore as the Sawfish submerges beneath the waves. The final scenes of the movie show the deserted, abandoned streets of Melbourne.

The last shot is pointedly of the "There Is Still Time ... Brother" banner.

The great strength of this film, and why it resonates with viewers to this day, is the fact that it focuses not on death but on the uniquely human ability to embrace life even with the certainty that death lies just around the corner. It is this ability that allowed concentration camp prisoners to create theater, literature, music and even babies in the most horrific of charnel houses. It is our ability to not dwell overmuch on our own mortality and to live in the moment that ultimately keeps us sane and productive.

The overall tone of the film is bitter sweet. The tragedy lies not in the billions of dead but in the few thousand still alive. THEY have time to reflect on all that they have lost. The poignancy of their relationships and their ability to love one another with no hope for tomorrow has an emotional impact that no CGI created mushroom cloud could hope to duplicate.

On The Beach is one of those rare films that, like Seven Days In May, was very much “of it’s time”, and yet remains timely some 50 years later. It is a film that will stay with you for a lifetime.

That’s 30!


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Ok…some random TV and Movie Stuff!


“Actor Freddy Prinze, Jr., 33, and his Buffy the Vampire Slayer wife, Sarah Michelle Gellar, are crediting the television show 24 with keeping their marriage together, according to the National Enquirer.

A friend of Prinze and Gellar told the tabloid magazine that Sarah Michelle Gellar was unhappy with Freddie Prinze, Jr. while she was expecting their first child together. Reportedly, Gellar felt she needed "space," and Prinze was not working at the time so he was around constantly.

According to the latest issue of the National Enquirer currently on newsstands, Sarah Michelle Gellar and Freddie Prinze, Jr. were thrilled and overjoyed when he landed the role of Cole Ortiz on the hit television show 24.

As an unexpected bonus, Prinze's role on 24 required physical training and conditioning which have increased his muscle mass and improved his muscle tone.
If your marriage or relationship is being strained due to unemployment, finding a job may help alleviate the pressure and save your marriage.”

So now I am angry with the producers of 24 as it has long been my fondest wish that Sarah would someday marry a better actor! Come on Kieffer, get IN there!!!


In other 24 news, word has it that Kieffer Sutherland is not quite as invulnerable as Jack Bauer. Sutherland is having surgery to address a ruptured cyst (according to the LA Times). While production on 24 has been temporarily shut down, Sutherland is expected to be back in a week and that this will not interrupt the broadcast schedule going forward.


Rumor has it that Paramount and Marvel Entertainment are close to signing actor Chris Pine, who is known for his role as Captain Kirk in Star Trek. It can’t get better than this! Captain Kirk AND Captain America in one lifetime!! To be serious though, I really think this would be a great bit of casting and would give the project immediate legitimacy!

Speaking of Star Trek alum, it looks like Ronald D. Moore has hit another one out of the park with his Battlestar prequel, Caprica. It's set on the planet Caprica, 58 years before Battlestar, and illustrates how humanity came to create the robotic Cylons. It also introduces us to the dad of one of TV's most respected space commanders: William Adama, who's just a boy in Caprica.
The show is only into it’s first half dozen episodes and we have already had episodes focusing on, among other things, the nature of sentience, terrorism and it’s impact on the survivors, science and ethics, and cultism and the manipulation of the young. And that is just in the first MONTH! One of the great strengths of Battlestar Galactica was that it dealt with real world issues in a sci-fi universe (not unlike Star Trek). As long as Moore keeps Caprica on this path, it will be more than just another forgettable actioner.


Smallville ratings for season 9 have been…well SUPER. Just when you think the show has run it’s course the producers and writers come up with new directions to keep the audience on the edge of their seats. This season is focused on the surviving Kandorians, lead by Zod which parallels events in the Superman comicbooks. Add more new superheroes, the budding Lois/Clark romance and even the Justice Society Of America and the rumors of a TENTH season don’t seem far fetched at all. There is no question that Smallville has been the most successful of the many Superman TV shows (which given the success of those is really saying something!) But you can also make a strong case that Smallville is one of the most successful genre TV shows EVER!


V, which got off to such a great start seems to have disappeared. TV Guide reports that Battlestar’s Cylon Michael Trucco is heading to ABC's alien-invasion series V as the mysterious underground leader, That’s great news but how about getting some episodes on the AIR???!!

Finally, my search for the idiots who cancelled Patrick Warburton’s “The Tick” continues!

That’s 30!


Friday, February 12, 2010

DC Silver Age GRAIL Quest!

During the snow storm this week, with frankly nothing else to do, I cracked open one of my long boxes of Silver Age DC comics and just sort of rummaged. There is something comforting about those old four color covers of Action, Superman, Showcase, Justice League, The Flash and Batman etc. that warm the cockles of my heart. Though just what a cockle is eludes me. Being, myself, a relic of the Silver Age I have amassed a very nice assortment of DC Silver Age (Marvel too but that is for another day) and it got me to thinking about how I could lend my sage (read OLD) advice to younger collectors (read UNDER 50) on what I consider must have DC SA books.
Of course the prices on these books in Near Mint condition can average well over a thousand dollars each but mid to lower grade copies may be right in your budget! AND these books have all been reprinted over the years, so there is really no reason that you CAN’T have copies of the ones you covet! Just look UP when you come into CBJ and you will see the walls LINED with DC Archives. Ask the team which volumes the books I describe below appear in!

Showcase #4 – This is the holy grail of Silver Age books as it is the very FIRST Silver Age book. Showcase #4 marks the first appearance of Barry Allen, the Flash. This was a modern reworking of the Golden Age character, given a sleek new look and a science fiction back story as opposed to a magical origin. I have rarely seen this book, even in very low condition, for less than $1000, BUT it is constantly being reprinted in DC collections and certainly deserves an honored place in any Silver Age collection.

Mitch SA Collection Status – NEED IT!

Brave And The Bold #28 – The first appearance of the Justice League Of America! It does not matter that the world’s mightiest heroes came together to fight a very big STARFISH. It’s the thought that counts! A fair to good copy will set you back a few hundred bucks. However, the JLS is one of the cornerstones of the DCU and you really can’t have a complete Silver Age collection without this gem.

Mitch SA Collection Status – NEED IT!

Flash #123 – This is the very first appearance of an Earth 2 character in the Silver Age. The Golden Age and Silver Age flash team up! Nuff said! (with apologies to Stan Lee)

Mitch SA Collection Status – GOT IT!!

Showcase #22 – The first appearance of The Green Lantern. GL is one of the most popular and well written titles in the modern DCU. Check this out and you will see how little DC has had to change the character over the years. I have seen this book as low as $100 WITH a cover!

Mitch SA Collection Status – NEED IT!

Action #242 – The first appearance of Braniac! After Lex Luthor the evil computerized android is Superman’s greatest enemy! This book is a must have for ANY Superman collector. Sadly it is very expensive and TOUGH to find in higher grades because the purple background on the cover is very prone to chipping and showing every little crease. I chased this one for a long time but…

Mitch SA Collection Status – GOT IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Action #252 – This is a real gem! Action #252 marks the first appearance of TWO DC mainstays! Of course this issue has the very first appearance of Kara Zor-El….SUPERGIRL! But often overlooked is that this issue ALSO marks the first appearance of the evil Metallo! Figure to go between $150-$300 for a Good to VG copy.

Mitch SA Collection Status –HOT DAMN I GOT IT!!!!

Adventure #247 – This one breaks my heart! TRY to get even a ragged copy for under a grand! This is the first appearance of The Legion Of Super Heroes. It was a small Superboy story about a “superhero Club” and the only Legion members that appeared were Cosmic Boy, Saturn Girl and Lightning Lad. BUT it was the one that gave birth to a legend…I mean LEGION. Plan on the Legion Of Superheroes Archive for this one!

Mitch SA Collection Status – NEED IT! (Sobs!!)

Adventure #300 - This one is much more affordable for legion fans. It marks the issue in which the LSH became the lead feature in Adventure and you can get a NICE copy for around $100!

Mitch SA Collection Status – Got it!

Superman Annual #1 – This one is a personal favorite of mine. It was THE VERY FIRST Annual ! It features some wonderful; reprints from the late Golden Age and early Silver Age. Like most of the square bound 80 pagers it is very hard to get in higher grades and can go for over two grand! A low grade copy goes for about $100 but it was recently reprinted in a wonderful facsimile edition that you can get for around $5. It is worth it JUST for the cover!

Mitch SA Collection Status – YOU KNOW I HAVE THIS ONE!!!

Detective #327 – The first NEW LOOK Batman issue. Batman was one of the last character to get a silver age make over. During the 50’s and most of the 60’s Batman was regulated to Sci-Fi/Dick Tracy type of stories. So much so that the character was hardly recognizable as Batman at all! This was the first step in modernizing the character ! You can get VERY nice copies at around $50!

Mitch SA Collection Status – GOT IT!

Superman #149 – The Death Of Superman! No REALLY. This was the issue in which Luthor actually manages to KILL the man of Steel. Of course it was an “Imaginary Story”…the FIRST one in fact. It was ALSO the last 10 cent issue of Superman! Just how you can have an “Imaginary Story” in and imaginary universe was never actually explained! A near Mint will set you back a couple of yards!

Mitch SA Collection Status – I GOT TWO!

Justice League Of America #21 and #22 – The first cross over between the JLA and Earth 2’s JSA! It would become an annual event! You can get the pair in about VG for around $100!

Mitch SA Collection Status – I GOT EM!

Showcase #34 - The First Appearance of the Atom! In my opinion this is one of the more UNDER valued SA DC first appearances. You can easily find VG/F copies at around $100. Not bad for a DC Mainstay! Hell, the cover ALONE is worth the price!

Mitch SA Collection Status – I GOT IT!

Showcase #6 – The debut of Jack Kirby’s Challengers Of The Unknown! Kirby often said this was a prototype for the Fantastic Four. You can certainly see the seeds that were planted here that would eventually lead the way to Reed, Sue, Ben and Johnny! VERY RARE and VERY expensive! Get the DC Archive Edition! But get it fast because THEY are getting rare too! (psssst CBJ had one last time I looked!)

Mitch SA Collection Status – I GOT IT!!! (But I got it as a kid . My wife would KILL me if I spent the couple of grand necessary for a mid range copy!)

Secret origins #1 – This is one of my favorites because it is the FIRST reprint of several early Silver Age Origins. In itself this is a valuable book in higher grades but you can certainly find a nice mid range copy for about $100! It is a very nice way to get the first SA stories featuring Green Lantern, Challengers of the Unknown, Flash, and Adam Strange!

Mitch SA Collection Status – I GOT IT!

Green Lantern #76 - #85 - #86 – These issues were crafted by the legendary Neal Adams and essentially put an END to the Silver Age by introducing real world themes such as racism, war, and drug abuse to comic books! They have been endlessly reprinted but the originals can all be had for under $100 for mid to high grade copies.

Mitch SA Collection Status – I GOT THE ENTIRE RUN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Finally as a coda to the Silver Age I highly recommend the Alan Moore/Curt Swan story “Whatever Happened To the Man Of Tomorrow” (Superman #423 and Action #583). The story was intended to close the book on the original character's history subsequent to the events of Crisis On Infinite Earths and in preparation for the following series reboot by John Byrne , and was Swan's final major contribution to the series. You can get BOTH in near mint for around $20! It is also now available in a very nice hard cover edition and readily available!

Mitch SA Collection Status – I GOT EM!

There you have it troops. It is certainly not EVERY book from the Silver Age of DC but they are all great books and KEYS at that!

Some I have....some I need...the QUEST GOES ON!!!

FIVE days until Pitchers and Catchers!
That’s 30!


Thursday, February 11, 2010


I hope everyone enjoyed their snow day yesterday. I know I had fun trooping in the snow with my wife to get my comics. Today was a pain, having to dig out the car, not fun at all. Anyways, this week wasn't heavy but some sweet stuff did come out and two books in particular I think you should definitely get your hands on.

First up some "Blackest Night" tie-ins.


The third part at this point of the Secret Six's involvement in "Blackest Night". Picking up directly from last issue, The Six and The Squad are knee deep in fighting the newly resurrected Black Lantern versions of heroes and villains that Amanda Waller has been picking apart secretly at Belle Reve while Waller herself is trying to get Scandal Savage to out of the House of Secrets and get the Six to join her and the Squad.
Waller's point of the attack is really to get Deadshot back on the team. He's the one she really wants.
King Faraday alerts everyone that the Black Lanterns cannot be defeated normally and that they need some kind of "Green Lantern level light source to finish them off."
Little does everyone know that inside Waller's secret lab at Belle Reve, she's got a Manhunter that they've recovered from "the swamp".
I wonder if this is a Manhunter left over from "Millennium", when the Manhunters were planning on taking over and attempted to destroy Metahumans.
The Six and The Squad escape Belle Reve via Black Alice stealing Nightshade's powers and creating a portal back to the House of Secrets. There they make a quick alliance to defeat the Black Lanterns that followed them through the portal. Waller brings the Manhunter and some stolen flash grenades taken from Dr. Light and dispatches the Black Lanterns.
The best part of the whole book is the end. Waller threatens the Six if they don't come along and become part of the Suicide Squad so what does Deadshot do?
He shoots Waller in the chest close enough to her heart that they have to take her away immediately to Belle Reve. Deadshot then tells them that if they ever come back or if they ever attempt to even bother his team that he'll kill them on sight, no questions asked just one shot to the head.
Being a huge Suicide Squad fan I'm so happy we got to see John Ostrander return to the team he created and made famous. Gail Simone did a bang up job as well and Jim Calafiore's artwork is amazing. I wish he was the regular artist on the series but I really like Nicola Scott's work too so it's great artwork either way.

5 out of 5 Goon Zombies!


Connor Kent has had a hard life always being controlled by someone. Now, he's being controlled by the Black Lantern Ring and it's hunger for emotions. After Nekron revealing that he has kept all the heroes who have died from really dying in an attempt to use them later on, They all become Black Lanterns. You already knew that though if you read "Blackest Night #5".
Connor has developed strong mental barriers due to his life being filled with people controlling him. Inside his mind, Connor is withering away as he watches his body try to kill Cassie aka Wonder Girl. Using his mental know how, he manages to etch out the word "Fortress". Cassie gets the hint and heads to the Fortress of Solitude.
There his body is being repaired in the same device that restored Superman after he died during his battle with Doomsday. Technically, there are two Connor Kent's on earth right now because Connor was released in the 31st century by the Legion of Superheroes during "The Legion of three worlds" mini-series.
There they use his "dead" body as bait to get the ring off him.
Not a bad story, it's nice that DC is explaining how certain characters are getting the black rings off. I don't really have any complaints about this issue. I wish it did have it's usual "Legion of Superheroes" back up that the book normally contains.

4 out of 5 FREEZY BREATHS!

Now, two books in particular came out this week that I took a chance on and I really enjoyed. I think you should do the same and I'm sure you won't be disappointed.


From creator Tim Seely of Hack/Slash fame comes his homage to the 1980's and it's amazing toy lines / cartoons.
This book is actually the printed version of the book which has been online for quite some time over @

Welcome to Planet Solus: a world of magic and monsters. Prince Jaysen, the main character, finds the mystical figure of action, an artifact that allows him to transform into COLT NOBLE, PALADIN OF POWER.
Hoodoo Hex, a stygian witch gets drunk one night and decides to summon a boyfriend for herself, someone who will accept her. She summons forth Archfiend, Lord of Annihilation.
Archfiend decides to take over the world and needs some minions. After breaking into Necropont Penitentiary, he finds a rag tag crew of "minions".
Arsenic Black, Binox, Dethbreath, fourhead and Scamp are the worst of the worst.
Capturing the King and War-Man, Archfiend is defeated by Mareea and Colt Noble, really Prince Jaysen.
I laughed my ass off throughout the issue because the dialogue is hysterical and the visuals of a fifteen year old in the buff body of a "Hero" trying to impress Mareea to get laid is awesome.
I really loved the similarities between the cast of Colt Noble and He-Man. Anyone who grew up in the 80's will immediately pick this up and love every last panel.
The exclusive to this printed version of the webcomic is the back up story of the Animaliens, other group of heroes mirroring a famous 80's icon, The Thundercats.
If you're an 80's baby or just a fan of great story telling and an awesome example of Tim Seely's skills as a writer as well as an artist, this book is for you.

5 out of 5 don't pee in space because it'll follow you!


Andy Wussler is a nerdy guy who lives alone and doesn't have any friends. One night he sees an ad on t.v for "Lifemate"; a company that creates mates for lonely people. Andy heads down and has a mate created for him. Debbie, his Lifemate creation shows up and gives him all the sex and companionship he could ask for. After a while, Andy gets bored with Debbie because she has no sense of self. He asks her opinion about a movie they had seen and he gets frustrated because she just yes' him. She likes what he likes, if he enjoyed it, she enjoyed it.
Andy's eating lunch one day when one of his co-workers Samantha, whom he asked out and she told him her mother was sick, asks him why he hasn't called her again. He thought she wasn't interested and didn't want to bother her. They begin seeing each other and he begins to neglect Debbie. He comes home from work and just rushes to bed or comes home, showers and runs out.
Eventually Debbie realizes what's going on as Andy calls Lifemate and explains he doesn't want want her anymore. Debbie begs him to keep her because she'll be scrapped since she was created solely for him.
The end has a real shocking twist and you never really see it coming.
This story was really good. It's a combination of a love gone wrong / stalker story with a twist because the stalker is a robot.
I really enjoyed this book and I can't wait to see what the next issue has in story since each issue is a stand alone story.
The lesson learned is the perfect mate isn't always what you want.

5 out of 5 robotic sex slaves.

Sadly, I was going to review "CHOKER #1" this week but Diamond messed up and the book isn't going to ship until next week. I can't really complain because in two weeks, Ben McCool and Ben Templesmith will both be at COMIC BOOK JONES signing copies of the book kicking off their "CHOKER TOUR".


Saturday, February 6, 2010

Smallville: Absolute Justice 2-hour TV movie review

As an infrequent watcher of television shows with the tendency of acknowledging the existence of serialized dramas, but never wanting to jump on the band wagon while it’s still moving, I have never paid much mind to Smallville. Of course I’ve known about the show since its inception. Being an avid comic reader and fan of the comic medium and its other forms of media I appreciate the existence of a show like Smallville. I think with this show, I have always imagined that the first several years might have been a little drawn out and possibly boring. It seems like forever had passed before Clark Kent had any connection with the famous S that would one day become the iconic symbol plastered on his chest. Perhaps I have never really watched the show because I have never been the biggest Superman fan, though just like any other comic reader, I appreciate and love him. It is in the rule book of fandom after all.

With all that said, this review of February 5th’s 2-hour TV movie Smallville: Absolute Justice comes from the perspective of a life long fan of DC Comics, not as a die-hard Smallville enthusiast. Though I must admit, when The Flash was first introduced to the series, I was right there in front of my television eager to see a rendition of the “Scarlet Speedster” even if I scratched my head to the realization that they used Bart Allen as The Flash. When I first heard last season that The Legion of Superheroes were going to be on the show, I made sure to catch that episode too. Now yet again, when I found out that they were going to incorporate the Justice Society of America into the show I was more than giddy. Seeing Dr. Fate and Hawkman in full costume in the initial trailer for this episode made me promise myself that I will glue myself to my television for two hours even if it was going to be on a Friday night. For any DC fan, it was an exciting two hours to appreciate seeing some of your favorite characters mentioned or shown on television.

The episode starts off with an interaction between Chloe and Sylvester Pemberton, The Star-Spangled Kid. In his attempt to ask for help and give warning for the future, they are attacked by someone who has ice powers who ends up killing Pemberton. We then find Wesley Dodds, The Sandman, alone in his home having a dream about the attacks before being attacked himself. It becomes clear that someone is hunting the members of the Justice Society of America. They leave a smeared calling card saying only JSA on it for the authorities to find taunting any hero who would see it on the news. The most exciting scene for any DC fan was the flashback involving the arrests of the members of the JSA in the past, thus disbanding the team. I know I sat on my bed uttering Alan Scott’s name in anticipation, having a face of excitement when his hand grasped a bar in his prison cell with a Green Lantern ring visible. Though with that little Easter egg (which there were numerous ones present for fans i.e. Dr. Fate mumbling Hourman‘s name, seeing the original Red Tornado, etc.) one has to wonder why he couldn’t just use his ring to get out of prison. Perhaps because heroes aren’t supposed to defy the law (unless they’re Captain America) or perhaps because 24 hours had passed and his ring needed a recharge. To regress, this scene displayed why nobody knew of the existence of the JSA or their legacy.

Clark’s stroll through the JSA museum was a nice treat. I wish we got to see more members of the team in full costume besides Star Girl; who would be the first of a new generation to take on the mantle of a fallen JSA member, Hawkman, and Dr. Fate. The good news is that by the end of the episode Hawkman does mention that there are twelve members still alive and plans to go search for them, so there is a possibility that we could see more of the team on Smallville one day. The villain of the episode turns out to be the modern day Icicle who is hunting down the JSA for putting his father in a vegetative state a decade prior. Just like any DC fan, I anticipated the tension between Hawkman and Green Arrow who famously are at ends with each other in the comics. They bicker just like they are meant to and we even get an origin story about Hawkman and Hawkgirl. The advice he gives to Green Arrow about love was a nice nod to his relationship to Black Canary. The episode bands an unreferenced Justice League of America with an unnamed Superman, Green Arrow, Martian Manhunter, Hawkman, Star Girl, and Dr. Fate banding to stop Icicle from enacting his vengeance. The incorporation that Icicle is just a pawn working for Amanda Waller and Checkmate was a nice little twist. I personally smiled when she uttered; “welcome to the Suicide Squad.”

You can tell that DC powerhouse Geoff John’s put a lot of love in writing this episode. For those who are unaware of who he is, he is the current writer of Green Lantern, the mastermind behind DC’s Infinite Crisis; and their current event, the stellar Blackest Night. He has also had writing duties on nearly every character in the DC universe. So much of Absolute Justice was taken from the comics, properly providing the general public with knowledge of all these great characters. It was an enjoyable two hours spent being proud to be a DC fan. My only wish is that a few of the older JSA members may have appeared in full costume at the end of the episode instead of Hawkman declaring that he wants to find them and have the family back together. With an episode about legacies, family, and teaching and embracing a new generation, Smallville has opened itself to the path of truly involving the next generation of heroes once they are ready to accept their roles. It seems like in the world of Smallville, the inception of the Justice League of America is more than a possibility once Clark is ready to embrace his destiny as Superman.

-Babyface Jones!



First and foremost, how rad is the new site? Amazing. Lauren Monardo did such a great job. Did you see the picture she did of Dr. Strange whacking Socko and Tiger with his "STAFF"!.. Now, this week was a lot lighter than last week's blast of funny book madness but this week had some serious ISH hit the fan and hard. I hope you've got you're umbrella's ready cause the blood is raining down.

First up to bat is "SIEGE"..

SIEGE #2 (OF 4)

Last issue was pretty big. The assault on Asgard began and Norman Osborn's plan to rid the earth of the Asgardian's was in full effect. This issue I feel like I can't really say what the big "Boom" in the issue is because it's so big I want you to find out for yourselves and have the same "NO F***IN WAY!" that I did when I read it. The Sentry is really becoming something of a bigger anomaly than we all thought he was. Norman makes a call that none of us saw coming and Thor lays the smack down.
My favorite part of this issue is the rally call that Steve Rogers gives to the Avengers about how "He doesn't care who put Norman Osborn in power or how but he needs to be removed." This is similar to the events that led to Steve becoming Captain America back in World War II. I like how Bendis is almost comparing Norman Osborn to Hitler. Two madmen with their own agenda's twisting people's opinions by mass media hypnosis. The battle is underway and Osborn isn't ready for the real battle that's to come.

5 out of 5 about to get smashed in the face with a shield


Ben Urich, Volstagg and Will Stern are trying to get Volstagg back to Broxton, Oklahoma so that he can answer to the Broxton Police for his crimes in Chicago. HAMMER has the entire state under lock down as the trio continue their travels. Todd Keller is on site at Tinker Air Force Base where HAMMER is staging their forces preparing for the attack on Asgard. Broadcasting his show on site in an attempt to spin Norman Osborn's actions in a favorable light, Todd learns first hand that things aren't what they seem as he interviews a robot Iron Patriot instead of Osborn himself. Agent Abrams of Hammer explains to Keller that Osborn has approved journalists on every ship telling the story of how Norman Osborn took the initiative to strike back against the Asgardians for the "attack" at Soldiers Field.
Volstagg gets seen as HAMMER scans the cars waiting to get through a check-point and he gets to "relieve some stress". Ben and Will get arrested and taken to Tinker Air Force Base and manage to escape.
This miniseries is really cool because it shows how in real life that the media can be used to sway people's views and opinions on matters that they aren't fully aware of all the details. I like how Todd Keller is the spokesman for Norman Osborn and his campaign. The fact that Osborn is using an already established television "know it all" as his puppet is a really smart move on his part. Osborn knows if people found out about what his real motives for everything were, he'd get hung on national television.

5 out of 5 Norse Gods reading fashion magazines.

With those being the only two books dealing with SIEGE, lets head over to the Ultimate Universe.

Ultimate X #1

Finally Art Adams is back on an ongoing book after how many years of just drawing covers! That's the first of many compelling attributes that make you want to read this book. So, it's been months after the events of "ULTIMATUM" and mutants are being hunted, killed or arrested, guess who just found out they were the son of one of the most famous mutants; James Hudson.
After crashing his car in a race, James learns that he has his father's healing factor and after a visit from Kitty Pryde, he also learns that the parents he's always lived with aren't his natural parents and that he also has claws and he can put metal over them.
I was a little leary about this series but like I said before since Art Adams is drawing it and with Jeph Loeb writing it, this series has a lot of potential.
I'm really excited to see what happens with this series because it's a new ongoing and I think it's the replacement for "ULTIMATE X-MEN".

5 out of 5 you've got red on you!

Now, lets head over to the DCU for some "BLACKEST NIGHT" tie-ins.


I really hate that this was just a miniseries because the combination of Greg Rucka, Nicola Scott and Nei Ruffino is just a match made in heaven.
This is a really fast issue and before you know it it's over. Diana is reveling in the power she has been deputized with temporarily. She's been told so many times by Hal, John, Kyle and Guy how amazing it feels to have such power at your fingertips but to actually have it, Diana is like a person who get's drunk for the first time. She doesn't know what to do first. She talks with Carol Ferris and the two head into battle against the Black Lanterns. First up is Maxwell Lord, who made me laugh because they first thing he says when he sees Diana is "Hey everybody look, my girlfriend's here." He quickly get's dispatched but Diana has to deal with something bigger than Max, she gets attacked by Red Lantern Mera who took Diana's attack on her when Diana was a Black Lantern really personal.
After a tussle and and getting wrapped with the golden lasso, the two come to terms and head off with the rest of the different corps.
Like I said, I'm sad to see this mini end because not only is it a good story but the team of Rucka, Scott and Ruffino is awesome.

4 out of 5 Wonder Woman likes Bondage.

The Question #37

I must say, I'm really disappointed in this the last of the "final issues" dealing with "BLACKEST NIGHT". Renee Montoya, Professor Tot and Lady Shiva all have something they want answered by Charlie aka The Question. Shiva shows up to fight a Black Lantern, Professor Tot wants to know the answers of life and death and Renee just wants her friend back. Charlie comes back and begins to fight all three when Lady Shiva tells them that they need to let go of all emotions they have for Charlie and that in doing so, they'll disappear and he'll be blind to them. They all focus on losing their emotions and say their goodbyes.
This was probably the most boring and really useless of the bunch. I really didn't enjoy it and I don't see what this has to do with anything other than resurrecting the original Question as a Black Lantern.

1 out of 5 gun shot Lady Shiva

now onto a book I think everyone should check out.


This zero issue leads into the graphic novel coming out later this year from Radical Comics and creator, artist and writer Nick Percival. This is Nick's attempt at doing his spin on the classic fairy tales. It's very dirty, slimey and oozes techno organics. We meet Jack from Jack and the beanstalk as one of his many titles as the giant killer. He uses magic beans as a drug that helps him heal and gives him a boost while fighting off a pair of giants. We then meet a tree like Pinocchio who is being tortured and set on fire. We also meet Red Riding Hood who kills some techno wolves with her sickles.
Nick's artwork is very similar to Simon Bisley's. His style is very dirty and techno organic, with a twist of realism. I can't wait for the graphic novel to come out because the story is very interesting and the artwork is amazing. I recommend everyone pick this issue up considering the fact that it's only a dollar.

5 out of 5 greasy, bloody decapitated giants.