Monday, December 31, 2007

End of 2007.

It's the end of the year and everyone likes "best of" and "top ten" lists, right? Well, Marvel has put up two articles, The Top Ten Villains of 2007 and The Best Moments of 2007. ::UPDATE:: They also added a Top Ten Heroes of 2007.

A couple of days ago, Darkhorse released a trailer for Hellboy II. Here's the link. I liked the first movie a lot so I've been waiting for this to come out. Too bad I have to wait until Summer.

That's all for today. Have a happy New Year!

Sunday, December 30, 2007

December Reads Part III.

Thunderbolts One Shot: Breaking Point: I decided to give this one a spin because I want to start collecting The Thunderbolts series, starting with #118, which comes out on Friday. I was pretty impressed with this one-shot though, and I'm excited to start reading the series. This book was really well written, the art was great and it had the perfect balance of fighting, talking and character development. For a first-time reader, I was interested and was left wanting more. So it's a good thing the next issue comes out this week. I am totally psyched. Just about the only bad thing I have to say about this issue is that they used the font Crackhouse for the title of the one-shot. Seriously, Marvel? What is this, 1997? C'mon, either pick a different distressed font, or better yet, make your own. It's really not that hard.

House of M: Avengers #3 This series continues to get better and better with each issue. The Punisher really changed the whole series by switching sides. The story is great, the art is great, I love the cover art (by Mike Perkins) and I like the characters they chose for this version of the Avengers. I'm a Luke Cage fan, and he's front and center in this series.

I did not get Hulk vs. Fing Fang Foom #1 because I forgot about it and then didn't see on the rack when I was at the comic shop. I was thinking about getting Fantastic Four: Isla De La Muerte #1 but then flipped through it and decided to pass. I also didn't get X-Men #206 because that's one of the comics I subscribe to. I won't be renewing any of those subscriptions, mainly because they arrive a little later than the comic stores get them, and they arrive pretty beat up. So I'll just start picking them up at the store when they run out.

On Friday, I am planning to get Thunderbolts #118 and Exiles: Days Of Then And Now #1. At some point, I should be getting Moon Knight #14 and Uncanny X-Men #494 in the mail, even though they come out on Friday.

Also, as I mentioned in the update to the last post, I bought 100 old comics off of eBay for about $20. There is a nice mix of Hulk, Daredevil and Fantastic Four books with some other random stuff thrown in. There are some potentially awesome reviews that could come out of this pile of books, especially the Hulk stuff, because they are funny in a good/bad way.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Comic Book Ads #8 - Charles Atlas.

You know this ad. It's a classic. This one I believe was updated for the '90s because I think I scanned it in when I was doing that X-Force comic review and forgot that I uploaded it. It even has a website address. Things I love about this ad: The Blue Ribbon for "World's Most Perfectly Developed Man", and the check boxes for how to develop different muscle groups, with "Success With Girls" and "Magnetic Personality" thrown in at the end. Does anyone know if Mr. Atlas is still alive?

UPDATE: I just looked him up on wikipedia and he died in the '70s. So all those times I saw that ad in comic books and on TV, it was just a marketing campaign. I am kind of wondering if the "Success With Girls" information is still available because I want to know what kind of advice that a guy born who was born in 1892 and has been dead for 30+ years can give me in regards to attracting women. Charles Atlas might just might end up getting 2 of my hard earned dollars.

UPDATE #2: I bought a random collection of 100 old comics on eBay for like twenty bucks and they came yesterday. So I was reading Marvel Super-Heroes #35 (which I think just reprinted old Hulk and Sub-Mariner comics, but they never list the original comics that they reprinted) and on the very last page, I came across this original Charles Atlas ad, so I thought I'd scan it in and post it. You can see that some of the illustrations were redone in the 90's ad, but overall, it's still the same ad. This ad was published in 1972, presumably right before the real Mr. Atlas died. I thought it was a strange occurrence, that I found this one after writing about it a couple of days ago, and that this one was published right before his death. Pretty trippy.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

December Reads Part II.

Mighty Avengers #6: This one finishes up the first story arc of the series. Tony Stark has been "killed", or more accurately, he is absorbed into his armor, which is then taken over by a female version of Ultron. Is it me, or is everyone else tired of Ultron stories? He should be totally unstoppable, yet every time he makes an appearance, he dominates for a comic or two, then is defeated, only to escape annihilation to return in a year or two to cause more havoc. He's basically a less annoying robot version of Arcade (obviously, in my book Ultron is infinitely better than Arcade because he is a super-intelligent robot). Anyways, I hope I'm not spoiling this for anyone, but the Avengers defeat Ultron and are somehow able to revive Tony Stark. Like you couldn't see that coming. I mean, if Stark were to die, it would basically wipe out the Initiative story line, as well as the whole Civil War crossover. So that would have been two years of work down the drain. I mean, you really didn't expect them to kill Iron Man right before the movie comes out, right? Basically, it was a story to showcase the other members of the team, and I actually enjoyed it. It has the right amount of words, comic relief and smashy-smashy that most people are looking for in a comic. I'm in for some more.

Exiles #100: This one was pretty disappointing. I've been out of the game for awhile and I have heard great things about The Exiles series. However, this was the last issue of the series, and it was basically wrapping everything up. So it was kind of a bad place for me to start. The story itself kind of seemed like a back-up story and there were a lot of flashbacks involved. Basically, some people left, the series is going to get rebooted and life goes on. I am interested in the new series and will probably try and pick it up. The other series that I have heard good things about is the Thunderbolts, and I am going to pick up the new issue (#118) next week. I've been looking for back-issues on eBay, but they're pretty expensive. Getting back to the Exiles, I am going to pick up the new series, but it will be on a pretty tight leash. If I'm not knocked-out within the first couple of issues, I'm going to pull the plug.

Fantastic Four #548-550: I went back and bought some back-issues to check the series out because I enjoyed the current story arc (#551-552). I was never a real big fan of the FF, but I'm giving them a chance now. This story arc, well, it's just ok. It features The Wizard as the main bad guy and Storm and The Black Panter as friends/ex-members of the FF (they stepped in after the Civil War crossover when Sue and Reed went on a second honeymoon to "work on their marriage"). The Wizard is kind of a lame villain in my opinion, so maybe that's why I didn't enjoy it as much as the current arc (which features time-travel and Dr. Doom, which are two of my favorite things). I'm still going to give them some more run though, it looks promising.

New X-Men #45: Messiah Complex Chapter 8: The reason I really hate crossovers is that now I have to figure out where to put a couple of issues of New X-Men and X-Factor in my collection. Where do I stash them? I guess with the rest of my X-Book collection. That aside, this was a pretty weird issue. X-Force tracked down Cable and the mutant baby, who was already getting ambushed by Lady Deathstrike and the Purifiers. X-23 and Deathstrike go at it (which was actually pretty cool), Caliban gets shot in the chest protecting Warpath and then Wolverine runs after Cable, who backtracks to steal their Blackbird and is able to escape. You'd think Logan would leave a rear guar. I was a little shocked when Caliban was shot, because he is a favorite of mine, however, Caliban is featured on the cover to the first issue of X-Force, which comes out in February, so you figure that somehow he survives. I would say that not a whole lot happened in this issue and beside the X-23/Deathstrike fight, they probably could have left this out of the Messiah Complex Series and no one would have minded. The part of the story that deals with people in the future is frustrating, because it is taking forever to find out what happened. Of course it's probably the key to the series, so they're going to milk it for all it's worth, but it is still frustratingly slow at this point. Throw us a bone. The good thing is, X-Men and Uncanny X-Men are next up and then there's only one more issue of X-Factor and New X-Men to go before the big finale in X-Men #207.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Update 12/26/07.

Apparently, Marvel moved their new releases to Friday this week. I was all excited because today was new-release Wednesday, but then I checked my list and new stuff comes out on Friday. Oh well.

Anyways, I haven't been reading that Captain America series, but I do know that they're about to reveal who will be the guy to take Steve Rogers place. Here's a rundown of the six finalists. Personally, I hope it's Hawkeye.

Marvel also wrote a pretty neat article on Frank Miller's Daredevil run.

They also released a new pic of Iron Man from the movie. Can't wait until May 2nd.

Comics I plan to buy on Friday: House of M: Avengers #3, and X-Men #206. I'm thinking of getting Hulk Vs. Fin Fang Foom #1 (we'll see if it passes the flip test) and New Warriors #7. I'll try and post what I've bought in the last couple of weeks tomorrow.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Heroes: Season Two Thoughts

Heroes wrapped up its first second season story arc "Generations" and here I am with a late review. Creator Tim Kring has noted some of the missteps made so far this year, which is good. Hopefully he recognized it on its own, rather than from constant complaints of the fans. The finale was rather satisfying, although it leaves me with a new complaint about Elle and Adam.

I realize the show is called Heroes, but this show needs villains. What do comic book heroes do? They fight villains! They don't take 8 issues to drive to America. Adam is a very intriguing character, especially when he revealed his motivations for releasing the Shanti virus. Elle was mildly annoying but at least she had a cool power. The whole "fighting back against her father" and "wanting to prove herself" felt too rushed. Just let her be a badass chick that electrocutes people and gets away with it for a while. Bonus idea: her superhero name should be ElectroCUTE. Crap, did I just violate WGA rules by posting that idea for Mr. Kring?

Same thing with Matt's Dad - here was this badass villain who was supposed to be more badass than Sylar, and he gets shut out pretty quick. I like how they put him away, but again, it felt rushed.

Here's hoping the show gets back on the right track whenever this strike ends.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

December Reads.

So I've been going to a comic book store lately and buying some stuff. So here's what I've been reading, it's pretty much all Marvel:

Fantastic Four #552: I bought this on a whim and was pleasantly surprised. I even went back and bought the issue before this one because it's a three-part story. The main reason I bought it was because the cover was awesome and it passed the flip test (i.e. - there was a lot of action). Who doesn't want to see a Doctor Doom from the future battle it out with the Thing for five pages? I know I do. It was fun to see them beating the crap out of each other. Overall, it was very entertaining and left on a cliffhanger, so I'm in at least for another issue. I'll probably even buy a couple of issues after that to see what the next story arc is like. This was a really fun issue, like I said, I enjoyed it a lot.

House of M: Avengers: I bought the first two issues and can't wait for the third. When I was buying it, one of the owners of the store said that he was surprised by it and that he liked it. He also said that it was very "wordy" which is unlike most Marvel books. He also said he was a big Luke Cage fan. Basically, all of those reasons were exactly why I wanted to check this book out. It's set in the House of M storyline, and Luke Cage puts together a team of "sapiens" to fight injustices set upon the humans by the mutant community, because the the House of M Universe, humans are the minority. It's a very interesting idea, and it's about to get even more interesting when the Punisher enters the story on the side of the mutants. Thumbs up, check it out.

Mighty Avengers: Awhile back, I bought a run of X-Men comics and the dude threw in the first two issues of this series. So a couple of weeks ago, I bought the three issues I was missing to get up to speed. I might review the first issue, because there is a funny part that involves Iron Man and Ms. Marvel trying to talk Ares (aka: The God of War) into quitting his construction job and joining their new Avengers team. Ares has a sun to support, he needs steady pay, health insurance and a 401k. The series is pretty interesting, it makes use of a lot of thought balloons, which I thought died in the mid-90s. If you like the Avengers, I think you'll like this new spin on the team.

Moon Knight Annual #1: I was disappointed with this one, mainly because I've been reading the Moon Knight series and was really impressed by the early couple of issues, which were written by Charlie Huston and drawn by David Finch. They changed creative teams a couple of times, but I think Hudson is back to co-plot it, starting with issue #14. So I'm a little excited about that, because the first story arc was really, really good. This Annual, however, was pretty boring and didn't really add anything to the current storyline. The only thing it seemed to get across was that it reinforced Moon Knight's sole motivation: Vengeance. I was very disappointed.

Uncanny X-Men #493: I liked this issue a lot. I've been on the fence about this whole "Messiah Complex" crossover, but this is the issue that made me a fan. Especially the second to last page and the last page. I can't wait for that new X-Force series to begin in February. It's got some of my favorite characters involved. The other thing about this issue that won me over was Cyclops' character development as well as his relationship with Wolverine. I was never a big Cyclops fan, mainly because I thought he was an arrogant jerk and I thought the constant fighting between Cyke and Logan was annoying. Scott has finally settled into a major leadership role involving all of the X-Men teams, and Logan seems to be ok with his leadership, while Scott seems to listen to Wolvie's advice. It's a nice little departure from their previous long-standing relationship. More about Scott's leadership involving the X-Men in the next paragraph.

X-Factor #26: I was excited about this because it was a continuation from the last Uncanny X-Men issue, and it basically is the first issue to feature the new X-Force. Basically the team is; lead by Wolverine, with Warpath, Wolfsbane, Hepzibah, Caliban and X-23 as team members. As I said in the last paragraph, I can't wait for their new series to launch in February, because I love the concept behind the team. So, back to Scott, one of the things I was reading about when the whole "Messiah Complex" was getting ready to launch was a quote from one of the editors that basically said that, "Cyclops will unify the X-Men in a way they haven’t been for years", and this was really evident in this issue of X-Factor. Scott and Professor X have an argument over Cyke's decision to form X-Force and to have them track down Cable. Scott ends up hinting at the fact that the Professor might have to leave if he doesn't stop questioning his decisions. He basically tells him to let him do what he trained him to do, which is lead. I really don't like the way Professor X has been treated/written in the last couple of years, but I do like the way Cyke has been handled. He has gone from one of the X-Men I hated the most, to one that I now at least can tolerate. Anyways, these two issues in a row (Uncanny X-Men #493 and X-Factor #26) were really, very good, and I hope the rest of the Messiah Complex lives up to the hype.

Wolverine #60: I wasn't overwhelmed by the story or the art, it seemed like a transition issue, it felt like it was setting things up for the next couple of issues. I'm intrigued, and I think I'll see where it goes. I bought the last ten issues on eBay because ::SPOILER ALERT:: Wolvie killed Sabertooth and I wanted to see how that was handled. Overall, it was just an ok issue, I'm interested to see where it goes. That's about it for now. Overall, I'm pretty excited to read comics again, there's a lot going on and there are some really great writers and artists working together right now. I don't think I've been this excited to go to a comic book store since the late 80s/early 90s.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Marvel Digital Comics.

This is probably old news, but a few weeks ago, Marvel released a Digital Comics section to their website. They had been beta testing this for a few months and had been offering select comics to view for free (they're still doing this as a tease to get you to subscribe, they have 250 comics that you can view for free). They finally launched a subscription site and apparently, it crashed their servers within a few hours. They've got all of the bugs worked out and it's working fine right now. It's pretty interesting, I used it when it was free and it wasn't so great on my laptop, zooming in and reading kind of doesn't do it for me, but on a larger monitor (like my desktop computer) it was fine.

They have two plans, an Annual Subscription ($59.88/year) and a Monthly Subscription ($9.99/month). They have over 2500 comics ready to be viewed, the only problem is, they have a scattered selection. LIke they only have 9 X-Men comics available from #142-416. That's a huge gap. I think they're adding stuff all the time, and they've mainly focused on starting with the really old stuff, so there's some cool stuff available. Like, Amazing Fantasy #15 (the first appearance of Spider-Man). Or, the first 50+ issues of the original Avengers series. And the first 60+ issues of the Uncanny X-Men.

I haven't bought a subscription yet, I don't know how much I'd use it. I think it's a great idea and it would be interesting for people that have stopped collecting and don't want to go bak and buy back issues. I am also wondering what DC is going to do in response.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Excalibur #5. 1988.

And we're back. This was supposed to be the third part in my Arcade epic, but then I got busy with work and other stuff and didn't have any time to scan/write. Well, here it is in all it's glory.

This one (like most of the early Excalibur issues) was written and drawn by the almighty duo of Chris Claremont and Alan Davis. Through a bizarre series of events, the team had found themselves in Arcade's Murderworld and have had their bodies swapped with those of The Crazy Gang. Also, Captain Britain's ex-girlfriend, Courtney Ross was kidnapped by Arcade and was being tortured in a fashion that only Arcade can manage. If that doesn't catch you up, here's a two page spread with everyone involved.

So at some point, Shadowcat phases through the control board disrupting the computer system that runs the place. Then later, Kitty hacks into the system to give her control over Murderworld. This is not a good situation for Arcade, because he is forced to enter his own Murderworld and try and survive it. Hilarity ensues.

First off, Jester (who is in Nightcrawler's body) tries to kill Courtney Ross with the old "tablesaw with a long conveyor belt" routine (Are you serious Claremont? I know this was supposed to be a fun story, but you're digging into Wile E. Coyote's bag of tricks? Yikes). Well, for probably the millionth time in a row, this trick doesn't work and Nightcrawler (who is in Jester's body) starts fighting with Jester (who is in Nightcrawler's body) while Courtney is allowed to escape. She then finds Arcade rather quickly and slugs him in the mouth.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Miss Locke and Mr. Chambers are trying to lure Lockheed away from his post of guarding the control board (see the panel to the right). Mr. Chambers gets burnt but Miss Locke turns on the charm and they escape off panel.

Choas ensues, a special performance by The Cat's Laughing occurs (I think this was Kitty's favourite band) and eventually, everyone is restored to their rightful bodies. Oh yeah, and Arcade is arrested. Everyone wins, except for the reader, because Arcade was written into the story. I'm sure the reason why Miss Locke and Mr. Chambers escaped was so they can break Arcade out of jail. He should have gotten the chair. Sorry, but that's just how I feel. So that's about it, hope it was worth the wait.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

30 Days of Night - Review

I have zero knowledge of the comic other than the basic premise, so I don't know how accurate this film is to the source. I still enjoyed it immensely. It's a dark and bloody movie - exactly what I'd expect out of vampires invading a town in Alaska where the sun doesn't shine for 30 days. Josh Hartnett and the always gorgeous Melissa George star as an estranged couple and leaders of the town's survivors. Most everyone bails on the town for the month, with only a handful of people sticking around.

One thing I loved is when they showed what day it is, so it's an establishing shot "Day 22 " and you see less and less people. You know they only have to hang on for 8 more days. Creepy. I wasn't sure about the ending right after I saw it, but given time, I think I like it. The end is a bit comic booky but it works. I highly recommend this flick.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Worst Avengers Line-Up Ever

I collected Avengers kind of off and on but I think this may go on record as the worst Avengers line up ever. First off, it's only five people. The Avengers should have at least 6-7 people 'cause you know people get their regular days off, so you have to have some flexibility in there. Secondly, two of the five people are members of the Fantastic Four. I don't buy the idea that you can be in two superhero groups at the same time. Certainly not high profile groups like the FF and the Avengers. Mister Fantastic and the Invisible Woman were kind of weak characters back then anyway. Thor is there, he's good. Steve Rogers is going under his The Captain alias at this point and rounding out Earth's Mightiest Heroes is...Gilgamesh, the Forgotten One! He was forgotten before he showed up and I guarantee he's been long since forgotten. Apparently he hasn't been seen in recent years and is presumed dead. Oh, and this just one gives a crap anyway. This issue deals with the Inferno crossover which kind of creeped me out as a 11-year old nice Catholic boy. I think they righted the line-up a few issues later but for a while, this team sucked. The only way this team could have been a worse line up is if Starfox and Dr. Druid were on it.

Monday, October 29, 2007

What Were They (Almost) Thinking?

What the hell was Marvel thinking accepting this as a submission? Before that even, what was Michael Golden even thinking when he drew this? Sure, Shadowcat hasn't had the best costumes but this?!! This is a design from the 1980s...I can't quite put into words what's going on here and why it sucks so much, but it clearly does. She looks like a french fry with random ketchup patterns on her. She looks like she lost a bet and had to have her costume designed by a mentally challenged third grader. Thank goodness Marvel didn't roll with this one.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

X-Men #145, 1985.

So judging by the cover, you're thinking that this book is totally gonna kick some ass, right? I mean, it's got Doctor Doom, he's just destroyed the entire X-Men crew and he's doing his best Captain Morgan impression while holding Storm and standing on top of a defeated Colussus. Totally awesome cover. So right about now, you're asking yourself, "Tyler, how does this comic not suck?" Well, slow your roll there, compadre, because while this one does feature the X-Men's first clash with Victor Von Doom, it also features an appearance by Arcade.

Just to get some administration stuff out of the way, this issue was written by the almighty Chris Claremont, and penciled by the combo of Dave Cockrum and Joe Rubinstein.

So, one night while Storm is at an operahouse, Miss Locke (yum) confronts her in her box seat. Storm's first instinct is to electrocute the crap out of her, so after she recovers, Miss Locke tells Storm that Dr. Doom kidnapped Arcade after the two had a falling out. Storm basically says, "And I should care because..." and then Miss Locke reveals that she wants the X-Men to go and rescue him.

So Storm reports back to the X-Men with the info, and the Professor calls the Beast because he's got the hookup over at the Avengers mansion. And he's actually faced the man they call Victor Von Doom, which is something that the X-Men have not. He gives them some pointers, but some of the team aren't really too fired up to go and save Arcade's uesless ass. Wolverine in particular is not a happy camper.

And I guess this is the first time the X-Men have every gone against Doom, because they have no clue who he is. Storm even asks Beast, "Is he that formidable a foe?" Is he a formidable foe? He's Doctor Doom! Hello? Seriously? Wow, Storm. I mean, wow.

Anyways, apparently they're down on membership, because Professor X has to call in some backup. He contacts reserve members Havoc and Polaris (who is looking pretty fine in her old costume if you ask me) and Iceman and Banshee to help out.

It then cuts to a backup story about Cyclops. He washes up on the shore of some island without his visor or glasses and meets some chick not named Madelyne Pryor. I kind of sort of remember this part of the storyline, but in this issue it was only one page long.

So back at the ranch and after a quick briefing so that everyone is on the same page, the X-Men hop in the Blackbird and head over to Arcade's Murderworld. We find out that the reason why Doom is pissed at Arcade is because Arcade turned one of his castles into an amusement park. Yeah. Anyways, so the first team infiltrates the castle and Angel, NIghtcrawler, Collosus and Wolverine take out the cronies, while Storm calmly negotiates with Doom.

Then, suddenly, robots start attacking the X-Men while Storm sits down for dinner with the Doctor. I don't really know how all that happened, but Storm ends up sitting down and is eating and drinking with Dr. Doom, while the rest of the team is getting pummeled. Then the twist ending is revealed. Arcade was never a prisoner, it was just a ploy to get the X-Men to Murderworld! Diabolical!

It ends in a cliff hanger with Doom subduing the entire X-Men squad while Arcade stands there with his thumb up his ass. He can't even capture the X-Men, he has to get Doom to do his dirty work for him. And you know that he's just going to bungle things and they're going to escape. Wow is he lame. So this is a two-parter, but to tell you the truth, if I remember correctly, the second part is a heavy dose of Arcade. I will see if I have the strength to review that one or not.

Monday, October 15, 2007


I've been threatening to write this post for awhile now, so I guess now is as good of a time as any to talk about the crapfactory that is Arcade. My personal first-hand introduction to the character occurred in approximately 1988, when I finally tracked down a backissue of X-Men #204, which had been a giant hole in my X-Men collection for a long time. When I finally bought a copy, I was severely disappointed. Months later, Arcade was featured in a couple of the early issues of Excalibur and that pretty much sealed the deal for me. God, I hate Arcade. He serves no purpose, other than to fill a back up story, which is used when they change creative teams or if they're behind on the production schedule and need a filler issue. Every time I would crack open an issue and see his stupid face and his stupid red hair, I would become immediately depressed that I just blew a $1 to $1.50 on a crappy comic. What a waste of newsprint.

Anyways, so a little backstory, and I had to do some research on Arcade because I had zero inclination to do so before this, but I was not surprised to find out that he was a spoiled rich kid. I was very annoyed to find that several different references referred to him as a "supervillian" and an "evil genius" (the next paragraph will go a little more into detail as why he's neither of those two things). Much of his history is clouded, but at one point Arcade did divulge some information. At one point his father cut off his allowance and he killed him. He then became a hitman, even thought he really didn't need the money. Then he developed "Murderworld". Kind of a boring backstory if you ask me.

The thing that really annoys me about him is that every time he's in a book, the plot always follows the exact same formula. He kidnaps someone, they have to survive his "Murderworld" park, which includes lifelike robots that look like various superheroes. So, chaos ensues, the kidnapped character has to "kill" someone they know (only to find out that it was a robot) so then they get mad and fight their way through to the control room and end up "killing" Arcade. Which would be awesome, BUT, every time he gets killed, we find out that it was an Arcade robot and that he somehow escaped. This is totally frustrating because he never, ever dies. AND he never actually kills anyone, which is his whole stated purpose. So, when you think about, no one ever gets killed or murdered, which, in my opinion, kind of defeats the whole purpose of calling your joint "Murderworld". Thinking about this annoys me to no end.

The only thing that is remotely redeeming about an Arcade story is that you're pretty much guaranteed an appearance by Miss Locke. Wow, she was smokin' hot. I had a huge crush on her and would flip through pages of annoying dialogue just to get to a panel that featured her. A very underrated and underused character, in my opinion.

Apparently, it is not known if he is alive or not (I vote for not), as in his last known appearance, he was transported to the Savage Land. Hopefully, he made a nice meal for a Tyrannosaurus Rex there. A guy can dream, can't he?

Friday, October 12, 2007

Cap is Back!

So the big news that Marvel announced on Thursday was that Captain America is back. No, they're not bringing Steve Rodgers back from the dead, there's going to be a new Cap with a new uniform. And from the sketches, it looks like he's going to be packin' some heat. I don't really know where I stand on the new uni yet, but I do know that I don't like my Captain American using a gat. I know it's kind of a throwback to the WWII era Cap, but I mean, that's pretty much why you people buy Punisher (or Cable) comics. Am I right? Cap's got the shield, he doesn't need to blast on people. And supposedly, the new Cap is going to be more conservative than the old, more liberal Cap was. Wait, didn't they already do this storyline way back inthe eighties when they fired Steve and replaced him with The Super Patriot (now U.S. Agent)? Man, sometimes comic books frustrate me...

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Iron Man, The Movie: Poster Update.

Mavel released the first one sheet for the Iron Man movie. It's a teaser of Shellhead's helmet. Click on the picture off to the left to enlarge it. Again, I cannot wait for this movie to come out.

They also apparently have something big planned for Thursday. It's very cryptic. I just we only have to wait a day or two to find out, but it's still annoying that they just don't announce whatever they have to announce right now.

We're working on some content, I know we've fallen off of the wagon again, but the good thing is that since no one really reads this thing, then there's really no complaints. We'll be back soon.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Big Pun.

Marvel has announced casting for the Punisher sequel. It will be called, "Punisher: War Zone". Dominic West (from "The Wire") is set to play Jigsaw, T.J. Storm will portray Maginty, and Wayne Knight will serve as the Pun's sidekick, Microchip.

I've got a confession to make, I haven't seen the first movie yet, but I'm kind of excited about this news. I love The Wire and Dominic West is amazing on that show (he also played the corrupt senator in "300"). I'm not so sure of the Wayne Knight casting, but obviously he's there for the comic relief. I also like the move to the "War Zone" franchise, hopefully it will be as violent as the comics are. You know, in a good way. In a previous update, they announced that Ray Stevenson (from HBO's "Rome") will play Frank Castle. Interesting HBO connection and a very interesting choice to play the lead role. Filming is supposed to start this month in Montreal, so we'll see what happens.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Uncanny X-Men #311

Ah, UXM issue 311. At one point, this issue held a special place in my heart. I just read it again ten minutes ago and I don't know why I always thought it was so badass, but let's take another look at it. This story takes place after the wedding of Cyclops and Jean Grey over in X-Men #25 and they have a little bit of downtime. The ever-annoying Jubliee is dying to go see the Rocky Horror Picture Show but Beast is busy fixing the X-Mansion's power core and Iceman is busy watching over Emma Frost. Meanwhile, Bishop is outside in the snow having some fond memories, talks to Storm and then throws a snowball at her as she flies away.

Beast seriously does something wrong and the power to the entire X-Mansion goes out. No big deal, except - the X-Men were holding Sabretooth at this time trying to rehabilitate him! With no power to keep 'tooth in his cage, he's free to let the animal loose and stalk some prey. And prey, in this case, means going after Jubliee! Yes, please kill her Sabretooth!

For some reason, Bishop decides to save the day. Dammit, Bishop. He comes in from the cold, uses what little bio-energy he has to blast Sabretooth through a wall which is pretty cool. He blasts him again in a page pretty much the same as the cover, then Sabretooth gets the advantage. Jubliee saves the day by finding a taser gun in the emergency locker. Damn you, emergency locker!!

On the plus side, the power outage caused Emma Frost to take over Iceman's body and eventually push his powers further than he'd ever used them before, which led to Iceman at least looking way cooler than he had in years. I think I remember being kind of creeped out by this story when I first read it because come on, Jubilee vs. Sabretooth is no match, and I geniunely feared for Jubliee's life. Oh well, still a somewhat enjoyable read all these years later.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Comic Con Update.

Wow. It's been awhile since someone's updated this thing. Chris and I went to the L.A. Comic Con last Sunday and I came home with some loot. This is what I scored:

Uncanny X-Men #471
Uncanny X-Men #269
Uncanny X-Men #185
Uncanny X-Men #92

X-Men #164
X-Men #159
X-Men #158
X-Men #49
X-Men #43

X-Factor #92

ROM #56
ROM #49
ROM #40
ROM #16

The ROM comics were 50 cents each. I am now missing one comic to complete the series, as I won an auction on eBay about a month ago. The X-Men #92 was the highest priced comic I bought at $4 and I think I will review it at some point because it had a pretty rad cover. ::UPDATE:: Like I feared, X-Men #92 is a reprint of X-Men #44. Oh well. It still has a pretty rad cover, and looks like it's a fun story.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Codename: Stryke Force #1

I understand first issues of a comic series are awkward. You have to introduce characters, an origin, some kind of conflict...but first issues from Image Comics were really awkward, like this one. Stryke Force was a spin-off of Marc Silvestri's Cyberforce. I believe the character Stryker was leader of both teams with Stryke Force designated for more dangerous, covert missions.

Silvestri wrote this one - I think probably while drinking beer and flipping between a film noir movie and Saturday Night Live. This issue alternates between Stryker trying to sound like a badass and lame jokes. And of course, there is the general vagueness because they haven't actually plotted the comic out more than two issues. I think that's what bugs me looking at these early Image comics now - they were just trying to crank out as many series as they could and make cash money. Just throw some characters together in a situation and we'll figure out a story later.

Try not to be impressed by the cover I scanned in, as my copy is indeed autographed by Marc Silvestri and artist Brandon Peterson who...thankfully, has gotten way better. This issue starts with Stryker providing extra protection for the President at a meeting of world leaders. Stryker decides to go with the old "hat and trenchcoat disguise" because nothing makes you more discreet when you have long hair, huge muscles and four arms than a trenchcoat. Some terrorists or something crash the party, blow shit up and go after all the world leaders. Secret services agents get killed but thankfully President "Bill" is safe.

The mysterious and menacing villain is introduced with the notion that he "is a being comprised of pure evil." See, this is the vagueness because they haven't plotted. Here's the villain - we won't tell you anything about him, not even his name - all you need to know right now is he is pure evil. Wow, I didn't know they still made villains like that. Tremble now, puny human! I didn't scan this page in, but one of the villian's henchmen has to report some bad news and comments that the boss doesn't like bad news. And when he hears it, he offers the henchman a severance package - by severing his head! Bwahahahaha! Get it - "severance" package, "severing" heads! He really is pure evil.

The rest of Stryke Force is forcefully introduced in an awkward page - Tempest, Black Anvil, Bloodbow and Killrazor. Do you think Killrazor, Ripclaw and Warblade are all homies? They totally should be. They should adopt third world superhero babies and give them names like Smashknife and Bloodstab. They just have to dust off the Image Comics Pick Two Badass Words Out of a Hat and Throw Them Together for a Superhero Name Hat.

Oh, right the comic. Does it even matter anymore? The bad guy blows up an aircraft carrier, then launches some torpedoes at our heroes and there's your standard first issue cliffhanger. Will the heroes surive? Nay, the more important question is - does anyone give a crap? I'll grab my trusty Magic 8-Ball and...never mind, I'll answer for you: no. I have no clue how long this series went on but hopefully it found a plot at some point.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

X-Force #76, 1998.

The battle I never expected to see...Domino™! Vs. Shatterstar™! To tha def! Nineties comic awesomeness! A dead giveaway that this issue was produced in the Nineties book are all of the Trademarks on the cover. Marvel was really protective of their trademarks in the Nineties. To the point of obsession.

Anyways, this one starts off with Cannonball hanging out with the team. He was dating Tabitha or Boom-Boom or Boomer or Meltdown or whatever she was calling herself back then, and he had left the team to join the X-Men. So he was spending some time with his girlfriend and his peeps. Recently, Dani Moonstar had returned to the team a couple of issues before this one, so the New Mutants connection was back in full effect. Several other things had happened in the previous couple of issues, Domino was captured and operated on and it somehow effected her powers, and the team also finally broke away from Cable's leadership. At this point in time, Cable had his own book and was barely featured in the pages of X-Force, so it was pretty much a foregone conclusion that there was a break coming.

So being a team composed of young adults that have some time on their hands, they like to go out and do things that normal kids like to do, and I guess kids still like bowling. The title page features Sam concentrating right before his shot. He ended up with the dreaded 7-10 split. Ouch. He didn't pick up the spare either. Boom-Boom spoils everything by using one of her timebombs as a bowling ball and they end up having to leave because she's blown their cover as normal teenagers/twenty-somethings. On the way to the car, Cannonball starts talking about coming back to the team and everyone thinks it's a good idea. Well, almost everyone. But more on that later.

The scene then switches to an oil tanker floating off the coast of Mexico, where Domino is beating the crap of out some dude for no real reason. We then find out she's on a freelance mission. Her assignment is get next to a reclusive european crimelord, who just happens to be holding a cage-match style tournament to determine his new bodyguard. I am not making any of this up. I'm also not making up the fact that Arcade is the special guest MC/matchmaker. God I hate Arcade. I'll probably devote an entire post to my hatred of that character at some point.

Anyways, Arcade announces that Domino's next opponent is...Shatterstar! Oh, Snap! This one features Shatterstar in his purple costume with the weird neck head condom. It's a weird looking costume, just trust me on this one. Anyways, they fight and eventually, Domino kicks him in the head and wins. SO finally, that question is answered, even though I don't really remember anyone raising the question in the first place.

So at the end of the story, we get to the dramatic, shocking, twist ending. Sam walks in on Boomer in a full on makeout session with his best friend, Sunspot! Dude, that is not cool! It turns out that they been seeing each other for awhile and Sam's not too happy about it. Tabitha decides to break up with him right there. Classy move right there. What a bitch. Sam is pissed and flies off and almost flies through Bobby when he tries to get in his way. I don't blame him, Bobby would have totally deserved it.

It ends with some uncertainty about X-Force's future and with Tab and Bobby feeling like crap for screwing their best friend over (as they should feel for tearing out a dude's heart and stepping on it). This was kind of the start of a different direction for the title, as they were transformed from a strikeforce into a group of young carefree mutants on a perpetual roadtrip. I think it would get retooled a few more times and somehow stuck around for another four years before Marvel finally folded the book. R.I.P. - X-Force, you kinda, sorta earned it.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Image Comics: The Road To Independence

Image Comics: The Road to Independence by George Khoury

I'm still not sure why I bought this book - got it used off Amazon which is definitely the way to go, 'cause $35 is a bit steep. Or you can ask me for it since I doubt I'll read it again. This book is basically a collection of interviews with Image people as they look back on 1992 when Image Comics blew up. That was the time I was heavily into comics so I remember all the hype and the first issues of Spawn, Shadowhawk, Youngblood, Brigade, The Maxx, Pitt, Hellshock, WildCATs, Cyberforce, etc., etc., etc.

Interviewees range from Image founders to colorists and editors. The only person who didn't give an interview is Rob Liefeld 'cause he's a dick. Okay, I don't know if that's why he didn't participate in this book but my trusty Magic 8-Ball tells me "All signs point to yes." His section is kind of an article composed from various sources. Overall, the book isn't that interesting. I was hoping to find out some good dirt and name calling but it's pretty straightforward - memories, struggles, industry reactions.

I think one of the most interesting parts is when Matt Hawkins (editor of Liefeld's line at the time, now he's at Top Cow) got a raise of $70k after being there for 9 months. That was a raise - who knows what his base salary already was. Wow, there was a lot of money to be thrown around in 1992. He also mentions that Liefeld dropped $20k to create a suit for the character of Kodiak (who?) which Hawkins had to wear at appearances. Again, wow.

So if you want to re-live a time of excess in comics, ask to borrow this book. Otherwise, save your money and buy something good, like Bone: One Volume Edition.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007


So I've been reading X-Force for the last couple of weeks (I think I'm currently on issue #50) and after reading the entire New Mutants run and I've gotta say, it's one of the most scattered books I've ever read.

A little back story: Rob Liefeld took over penciling duties for The New Mutants starting with issue #86. After a few issues he was able to gain creative control and through the introduction of a few key characters (Cable, Domino, Deadpool) and then he was able to convince the decision makers at Marvel to relaunch the New Mutants title as X-Force. Under the leadership of Cable, X-Force was meant to be a more militant version of the New Mutants, and as an extent, Charles Xavier and his X-Men. They were transformed into a strike-force and would take on missions deemed to be too "dirty" or "messy" by the X-Men and the government sponsored X-Factor.

To me, it seemed like the book lacked a constant theme or storyline. Some of that could be attributed towards the amount of cross-overs that X-Force was involved in, it really felt like the in-between issues were just filler for the next monumental mutant event. There was a story arc with the MLF (Mutant Liberation Front) that kind of died out and then there was an interesting story arc involving the Externals where it's revealed that Sam (Cannonball) is immortal. Both of these stories are dropped at some point and not really resolved, only to be revisited a few months later, after the summer crossovers are done with. And at one point, in an attempt to provide more bakstory on Shatterstar, they made him face Arcade in a two-part story. God, I hate Arcade.

It seems like every time there was a slump in sales, or when they felt like the book was becoming stale, they simply changed their base of operations, or their costumes, or their names. It was kind of like they were trying to distract the readers by showing them something shiny. And I guess this was a pretty popular book, I was winding down my collecting when this explosion was going on, so I kind of missed this train. The one thing that that was also kind of annoying was that the three Liefeld characters were very similar to each other. Cable, Domino, and Shatterstar were all mysterious characters, and they all had powers that were never really explained. I had to look up what Domino's power was (probability) because I had no idea even after I was about forty-five issues into the series.

The series was heavily criticized for it's violent content and it's overuse of firearms. For an example, see the picture to the right. I mean, there's just no way Cable can use all of that ammo and all of those guns. Ridiculous. Even though I swear they never really didn't do any damage with any of their guns. It was almost as bad as the A-Team. Cable and Domino would fire away endlessly and they would either miss, or whoever they hit would be powerful enough to absorb the shots without a problem. Also, I don't think they shot bullets, they were plasma guns, which I guess are better, but to be honest, I really don't know if they are or not.

The other thing that annoys me, and Chris brought this up a couple of days ago, is the insane amount of pouches all of the character have, when they never even use them. Why does Cannonball need a belt with 29 pouches? He can fly and is invulnerable, what does he need that's in those pouches? They never once reach into a pouch and get something. I mean...c'mon.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Comic Book Ads #7 - X-Force T-Shirt.

Chris ran that post the other day about Shatterstar, so I thought I'd get some posts together about X-Force because I'm currently reading the title right now. I'll write a post with my first impressions in a few days, I"ve got a few observations, but they're probably observations that others have already brought up about the series.

But today, we have an ad for an X-Force T-Shirt that ran in X-Force #1. Basically, this was the ad that pissed Rob Liefeld off and resulted in his defection from Marvel and the co-founding of Image comics. Basically, He (and the other artists that left and co-founded Image) was upset that he wasn't receiving royalties for merchandize that Marvel was selling that featured characters the he (and others) had created. So they created their own imprints where the creators owned the characters. While this worked in the beginning, eventually they all had to hire writers and illustrators and a lot of people have argued that Image has turned into the very thing is was rebelling against. More on that later. But anyway, so here you go, a little blast from the past from the early '90s.

Thursday, August 30, 2007


*sigh* Oh, Shatterstar, Shatterstar. Why have they forsaken you? Here's a case of when good(ish) characters go wrong - Shatterstar. He started off with a gay white costume but was cool, then he got a badass costume and became gay. I mean gay as in lame, but also perhaps literally because we're still not sure about his orientation. He allegedly had had a fling with Rictor in the mountains. If he would have said, "I can't quit you, Rictor" that would have been awesome, but alas, the whole thing has never been confirmed. OR denied!

So, Shatterstar was introduced at the end of the New Mutants run, and became a founding member of X-Force. He was created by Rob Liefeld so of course he has useless pouches and headgear for no reason, and a name created by mashing two words together - two of Liefeld's specialties. He was from another dimension and had a scar around his eye. Plus he had two badass double-bladed swords making for Four Blades of Fury!!! Okay, so they never used that terminology in the comics but they totally should have.

He learned Spanish from watching TV and during any early issue of X-Force, he stabbed himself through the stomach in order to kill someone behind him. I think it was a member of the Mutant Liberation Front but Google searches are proving fruitless. There was nothing he couldn't do!

Except have an easy backstory. It was hinted early on that he was the child of Longshot and Dazzler which would have been awesome. But then they introduced a guy in a coma by the name of Benjamin Russell who looked exactly like Shatterstar. Shatterstar was wounded, so their souls were merged or some shit and now he's both Shatterstar and Benjamin Russell. I don't know, it's something ridiculous like that. I think Marvel gave up after plodding through that origin story they haven't bothered to explain anything further. At some point, though, he got a much better costume even though now he's got pill pouches on his biceps. Because even superheroes have to remember to take their vitamins.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

The King.

Here's a really cool link on Marvel's site about Jack Kirby. He would have been 90 years old yesterday.

The article has a ton of covers, just keep scrolling down. Man that guy was just awesome. I loved his early X-Men covers as well as all of those Avengers issues with Cap on the cover, but one of my favorites was always that What If... cover of the original Marvel Bullpen as the FF. Rest In Peace Mr. Kirby, you deserve it.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Justice League Unlimited.

So for the last couple of months, I've been watching Justice League Unlimited at 8pm on the Boom! Network. I think I've watched all of them and I think they're starting to replay the series again. It's pretty good, you should check it out if you get the chance. For example, check out the intro to the show, it's pretty rockin':

See? That was pretty rad, wasn't it?

I do have a couple of complaints about the series though. First, they never play the original series (I just it was just called "Justice League") and there are a whole bunch of callbacks to it. I guess I should sign up for a free trial to Netflix and rent the first series on DVD.

Second, there are way too many Super Heroes in the mix. Half of them I had never heard of before I started watching the series. It centers around the seven founding members, but there are a whole bunch of other guys just wondering around. And during the episodes where there's an unstoppable Super Villain and all of the Super Heroes come out of the woodwork to battle him, it can get a little out of hand.

Third, the amount of collateral damage in some of the episodes borders on comical. No one ever dies, especially civilians, no matter how many buildings are destroyed. In one episode, Lex Luthor gets ahold of the Watchtower (the JLU's HQ in outerspace) and uses it's superlaser to destroy about ten city blocks. The heroes get down there and after a few minutes of helping people evacuate, they report that there were no casualties. Dude, it took out ten city blocks! How are there no casualties? Seriously? None? Zero? Zilch?

In another episode, Superman and Captain Marvel (aka: Shazam!) have a no holds bared brawl in the city and for about five minutes they trash entire city blocks. Superman would hit Captain Marvel and he'd go flying into a building and then the building would collapse on top of him. Then Captain Marvel would get up and punch Superman and he'd go flying into another building and it would collapse on top of him. They did this for about five minutes, I swear to God. It was getting ridiculous after awhile. Later, the rest of the founding members of the JLU were taking Superman to task and were scolding him for getting in such a destructive fight, and then one of them said something like, "You're lucky no one was hurt". What? They showed ENTIRE buildings getting destroyed, where were all of the people in those buildings? They're all out getting dinner? ALL of them? I don't think so. Personally, I don't think there's enough concrete and construction workers to keep up with the amount of rebuilding that has to take place on a daily basis. Metropolis has to have like .0000001% unemployment. Lose your job? Just go get a construction job. It's a union gig which means good pay and great benefits. I guess the Super Heroes help out with some of that, but they never show any of that. And they never show things like the Martian Manhunter writing checks to the city to pay for damages or talking to their lawyer or even filling out a duty roster. That's kind of boring stuff, but at least they could have made an effort there. They don't just beat the crap out of bad guys and robots all day. I'm just sayin'.

All in all, JLU is a pretty good series though. I highly suggest it. If you've got a DVR, just set it and forget it. Boom! runs it without commercials, so they end up being like 18-20 minutes episodes, which you can plow through pretty quickly. So check it out if you get a chance.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

The Invincible Iron Man DVD Review

I watched this movie over the weekend for free thanks to my local library. Good thing, too, 'cause I would've been bummed if I actually bought it. I got the two Ultimate Avengers animated movies and those are decent but I didn't really care for this one. The animation is good, but I think they messed with Iron Man's origin a little too much.

Tony Stark's father is still alive in this version, and Tony gets kicked off the board of directors at Stark Industries. There's some mystical stuff going down in China where Jim Rhodes was heading up an assignment to raise a sunken, ancient temple. According to some prophecy, if the temple gets raised, then the Mandarin will return and kill a bunch of people or something. Oh, and also according the prophecy, the "Iron Knight" will come to fight the Mandarin, and one...will...die.

Tony ends up in China with a metal shard in his chest, but his life is saved by Rhodes and some Chinese monk. He is forced to build a suit of armor in order to get the temple back to its original sunken condition. Too late, 'cause the Four Elementals of Mandarin have been let loose and are looking for the remaining rings necessary to bring the Mandarin back. Tony dons a suit of aqua armor in order to retrieve one of the rings, but it doesn't really work and the Mandarin is summoned and takes over the body of the girl who has been helping Tony all along. She's the last remaining descendant. Tony puts on the old school armor he built early on in the movie and defeats the Mandarin, along with the help of the girl's resistance.

All in all, it was somewhat entertaining, but I didn't like all of the mystical stuff they added to Stark's origins. The movie ends with Tony buying back controlling interest in Stark Industries, promoting Jim Rhodes and turning the company over to his father. A little too Batman Begins, if you ask me.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Avengers #239, 1984

Beware! It's Assistant Editor's Month. I guess that basically meant you weren't going to get your typical story and they were just going to do whatever the hell they felt like. This particular issue of Avengers features the first appearance of David Letterman. They could have just stopped right there, but they actually paid someone to come up with a script and do the art, so here's a recap:

As for the story - Simon "Wonder Man" Williams decides his acting career is going into the crapper. Since he's a reserve Avenger, I guess he's got some clout so he books himself an appearance on Letterman. He needs fellow Avengers to join him so he gets Vision to round up anyone he can find and the Vision pulls together Hawkeye, Black Panther, Black Widow and Beast. I guess Quasar was too busy primping his hair, so that's not too bad for last minute notice. Thank goodness the Black Panther was at the Wakanda Consulate because if the government had flown him in from Africa just for a talk show appearance, tax payers would have been pissed.

Good ol' Fabian "Mechano Maruader" Stankowicz is out to start some shit, though. (No one was more surprised than me that he has his own Wikipedia entry.) First he sneaks into the building with the oh-so clever repairman / fake mustache disguise, then gets himself a seat in the audience.

Hawkeye is partially deaf but too cool to wear a hearing aid, so he gets a copy of the questions Letterman is going to ask. Hawkeye just gives an answer once Letterman stops talking, leading him to believe Hawkeye may have psychic abilities. Stankowicz is getting bored by now and decides it's time to unleash the lasers he's put into the TV cameras. The Avengers scramble into action fighting against grenades, missiles, giant rollers and other stuff Stankowicz rigged up. He uses the opportunity to run down to Dave's desk and book himself an appearance. So remember, kids, if you want to get on Letterman just be a reserve Avenger, or attack the Avengers when they're on. Of course, he reveals his villainous motivation for doing all this - just to show what one person can accomplish.

In the end, it's Letterman himself that comes to the rescue of the Avengers and the studio audience. Stankowicz has clearly underestimated Letterman's ass-kicking ablities - while he and Dave are safe under his force field, he never suspects that Dave will knock him out cold - with a huge doorknob! I don't remember a giant doorknob being part of Dave's set but it serves its purpose. Dave swings at him and yells out, "It's clobberin' time!" Okay, not really, but that would have been dope. He gives him a ringer, then takes the battery pack and releases the force field. The Avengers have their shit together by this point and the crowd erupts for Dave's heroics. I'm kind of sad Paul Shaffer didn't get his ass kicked because if anyone deserves it, it's him.