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Comics…Deconstructed

Is Countdown Working for You?

Tepid reviews, lackluster fan interest, and a meandering plot have made a lot of folks just plain meh about DC’s supposed-to-be landmark Countdown series.  I had high hopes. I mean, when Darkseid showed up in the first few pages of the very first issue, my adrenaline started pumping. Now, I’m about 8 issues behind, and I’m not terribly interested in catching up.  What about you?  What’s your view of Countdown?

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August 24, 2007 Posted by | Batman, comic books, Comics, DC Comics | Leave a comment

Rack ‘Em Up!

I’ve only been playing around with this piece of software for a few minutes now, but I already see HUGE potential for the ComicRack freeware.  Essentially an iTunes-like environment for comics, ComicRack is already looking fairly sophisticated, and it is currently cataloging my entire collection of e-comics (which takes a while, so don’t be in any hurry when you first install it).  Nice features include a built-in comics reader, a database that tracks how often (if ever) you’ve read a particular comic, and user-defined star ratings for the comics in your collection.  Obviously I need more time to fully evaluate the software, but at the moment it’s love at first sight.  Start your downloads here:

http://comicrack.blogspot.com/

August 19, 2007 Posted by | Comics, Software | Leave a comment

Why You SHOULDN’T Read Watchmen First

As a corollary to Peat Muppet’s scathing indictment of Alan Moore, read this excerpt from an interview with critic Douglas Wolk, whose Reading Comics seems to be a must read:

Wolk: I was talking with some friends recently about the common mistake of recommending Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ Watchmen, as great as it is, as a starting point for superhero comics–as one of them put it, that’s like recommending The Seventh Seal as someone’s first movie! For pure, unencumbered superhero joycore, I love Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely’s All Star Superman–if you’ve heard of Clark Kent and Lois Lane, you know everything you need to know to enjoy it, and it deepens with repeated reading. Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Gaydos’s cruelly witty Alias,
about a self-loathing ex-superheroine-turned-P.I., has lots of Easter eggs for the continuity-obsessed, but it probably works even better as a stand-alone story. And if you’re at all into Victorian literature and/or want to sample Moore’s work, the two volumes of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen
(drawn by Kevin O’Neill) are hugely fun on their own, and also illustrate by analogy the way a lot of the best superhero comics and other pulp art work: providing metaphors to illuminate the central concerns of their moment.

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August 17, 2007 Posted by | comic books, Comics, Commentary, Graphic Novels, Watchmen | Leave a comment

I’ll Watch the Watchmen. Will You?

After a MASSIVELY long time, it seems the fabled Watchmen movie is finally going to be a reality.  Comic fandom now holds its collective breath in hopes that the film doesn’t completely blow.  The cast looks promising, considering that the producers didn’t pander the thing to every starlet and mega-star-wannabe on the block.  I’m most hyped about Jackie Earle Haley playing Rorschach. Based on his performance in Little Children, this is a man born to play the role.  The Watchmen website is spare, but it does contain the new poster (released at ComiCon) with art by Dave Gibbons.  Have a look-see:

poster

August 2, 2007 Posted by | comic books, Comics, Graphic Novels, Movies, Watchmen | 1 Comment