Saturday, May 30, 2009

Just a Quicky

I found this too damn funny to pass up posting it – from Twitter user @shanemoon.

Friday, May 29, 2009

A Punishing Read

Not since the days when they introduced Sarget Slaughter into the world of G.I. Joe have I seen a crossover this ridiculous. Marvel feels it will be profitable to pair Frank Castle with Slim Shady. That's right ladies and gents (as if chicks would read a blog this deep in nerd-dom) the Punisher's new side kick is Eminem.

I guesss they're trying to reach a new audience, but lovers of the sly tongued toehead seem a far cry from comic book fans. With the (sort of) recent popularity of graphic novels, comic books have pushed closer to the main stream. The problem is that the Eminem stream seems like it would flow from a different source a different country...and would be salty, somehow.

This is yet another instance where I would have loved to be in the pitch meeting for the idea. "For Marshal's next album, we should see if we can team him up with somebody equally as rebelious and the Punisher!! Yeah, cause he's a vigilante and he does whatever he wants in order to bring down criminals, and Eminem says whatever he wants...mostly to bring down panties, but still, there's definitely a similarity. Maybe this will spawn a new category of Rap that differentiates itself from gangsta rap and calls itself "vigilante rap".

From what I read on Twitter, it's every bit as ridiculous as it sounds. One of the links lead to a preview of the Eminem stroke-fest that is the Punisher/Eminem book. But I warn you, wait until at least a half our after you've eaten to read it, unless you're trying to slim down.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Terminator: Salvation Review

I saw Terminator: Salvation Monday morning, and I liked it. A lot. Looking at reviews on the internet, not a whole lot of people have that opinion, but I enjoyed it a lot, and I think it did a lot more for the franchise than Rise of the Machines did. I also saw Star Trek the day before (we really don't need a third review at this point) and I have to say that I enjoyed the Terminator movie just as much if not more than Star Trek.

Now, maybe that's because I grew up with the Terminator movies and never really watched Star Trek at all (except for a couple of seasons of Next Generation), so I might be a little biased, but I think a lot of people are a little too harsh when they review the movie. Yes, it has faults and flaws, but so did Star Trek. I thought the first half of the movie was perfect, the action sequences were great, and the way it was switching back and forth between each part of the plot was well done. It kind of broke down a little in the middle, but then it ramped up for the end. Yes, the ending was predictable, but supposedly they are all signed on for a trilogy, and I thought that for the first part of a trilogy, this movie didn't do a bad job of setting everything up.

I think if you enjoy the Terminator series, you'll enjoy this movie. If you don't like the series or you haven't seen all of the movies, you might not enjoy it at all and you will be quick to point out plot holes and flaws. In the Sci-fi genre, I think that's pretty much how it goes; fans enjoy, non-fans don't.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

May 2009 Reads Part III.

Agents of Atlas #5 - This series just keeps getting better. It also doesn't hurt to have The New Avengers guest star. This issue was just so much fun, lots of action and fighting and a lot of intrigue and setup for future story lines. I liked the reference to the backup story that I forgot where it appeared, but it featured a team-up with Wolverine and the Agents, and for some reason, M-11 (the super awesome robot team member) either still holds a grudge against him or has orders or programming to kill or capture him. I'm hoping this gets explained sometime soon. I look forward to this book coming out every month.

Fantasic Four #556 - This was a setup issue and I was kind of disappointed after I was done reading. It has an awesome cover and the first half was pretty good, I mean, when you feature a dead Watcher on a beach looking like a washed up whale and then have Reed Richards do an autopsy on said dead Watcher, it makes for an interesting story, but halfway through, it kind of just fell flat. The last panel was pretty cool, but of course the pages leading up to it were ambiguous at best and you have to wait until next month where they may or may not reveal more. I know the point is to keep your readers wanting more, but I thought this was a very uneven issue and I really haven't been too excited about this book for a couple of months. I'm contemplating dropping it.

Hulk #12 - Um, I have no idea what has been going on with this book for the last couple of issues. I think this is just a lot of filler until Hulk #600 comes out, which sucks, because they've bumped this book up to $3.99, and I hate spending even $2.99 on filler. I also don't understand why they bumped it up a buck, because it's been one of their best sellers and it's consistently in the top ten sales-wise each month. I think it's just a cheap way for Marvel to make an extra $100k a month. Lame. And Hulk #600 is going to be $4.99. Great. Thanks Marvel.

Invincible #62 - Yeah, I don't know how I feel about Invincible anymore. I was a little late to the party, and when I jumped on the bandwagon I still felt that the series was really good, but the last six issues or so have just been mediocre. I really wish I knew where this story was going. And that big event that Image was promoting really wasn't that great either. I am starting to consider dropping this title unless they turn it around and it gets better. I just don't enjoy it as much as I used to. I'm not saying it has to go back to what it was before, but it should have some entertainment value and I shouldn't be all "WTF, mate" after I'm done reading it.

Secret Six #9 - Oh my God, I loved this issue. For some reason, my store got it a week later than everyone else, so I was trying to avoid reading anything about it, and I'm glad I did. I was pretty much laughing 90% of my way through this book. The banter between Bane and Catman arguing over who is least qualified to replace Batman was awesome and Ragdoll dressed up as Robin was creepy and hilarious at the same time. This was just a really good book and I really think it's starting to hit it's stride, so I'm hoping the next couple of issues are as entertaining as this one. I am now looking forward to this book as much as I look forward to Guardians of the Galaxy, Incredible Hercules and Captain Britain and MI13. It's that good.

Thunderbolts #132 - You know, I really liked this issue. There wasn't much action going on, in fact I don't think there was any at all, but I liked it because it gave a little background on the current members of the Thunderbolts, who seemed to come out of nowhere after the events of Secret Invasion. The best part was seeing how they were reacting to being under Norman Osbourne's thumb, some of them are ok with it, some of them don't like it at all, some are super paranoid (for good reason) and some of them who were ok with it to begin with have some things to think about after they start talking to other team members. I liked the intricacies that this issue had and I hope it's an issue that the reader can look back to as being a pivotal piece in the current plot line. It also helps that there's a Songbird teaser at the end for the next issue. Can't wait for THAT to happen.

Uncanny X-Men #510 - This is going to sound like a broken record, I think I've already said it three times in this post, but this issue had the same problem that a couple of other issues had; I don't really know where the story is going and I've felt uninterested in the story and the characters for a couple of months. Seriously, I had to stop and try and remember what was going while I was reading it. And I couldn't really remember everything that had happened in the last couple of issues. That's not a good sign. I am hoping that this series is moving along to the next cross-over or what have you, because this story has been a little tiresome already.

Wolverine: Weapon X #2 - You know, I really don't remember what happened in the first issue of this series, and because I read like 900 Wolverine titles a month, it was kind of hard to remember. That didn't stop me from enjoying this book though. There are some really strange things going on in this book (like the sniper rifle that shoots a bullet that has 39 different forms of cancer in it), but it's fun and I'm actually looking forward to the next issue. I just need to dig up the first issue and reacquaint myself with the premise.

That's it for now, big week this week, I think I've got like 14 books to read on Thursday. Crazy.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Marvel 70th Anniversary Covers.

Ok, so Marvel decided to bring back the anniversary frames, which is pretty rad if you ask me. They're like the 25th anniversary frames from back in '86, which you can see here and here. I just wish they weren't variants. One thing I've been wondering about is why Marvel's celebrating 70 years this year when they were celebrating 25 years in 1986. The math doesn't add up there, it wouldn't even be 50 years if you use the previous mark to go by. If someone can explain Marvel's math here, I would appreciate it.

You can also got to Marvel's 70th Anniversary site to check out the top 70 covers of all time. Man, people voted for a lot of recent stuff. I hope the top 50 doesn't have anything relatively new. You can check daily for updates.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

August 2009 Previews.

Cool little teaser article over on Marvel's site about what's coming out in August. I am anxiously awaiting the X-Force vs. Rulk, and I am way too excited about Incredible Hercules being released twice a month. Pretty awesome.

Monday, May 18, 2009

May 2009 Reads Part II.

Captain Britain and MI:13 #13 - Hmmmm, I'm really not sure what happened in this book, because [spoiler alert] it seemed like half of the team died. So, that was kind of a bummer. I was starting to wonder if they had canceled the series are giving them this last story arc to wrap it up, but I'm sure that's not the case. It better not be, I just got the first trade and some back issues to catch up on the series. I'm hoping that this was just a setup for the next couple of kick-ass issues. I guess we'll find out next month. I guess the way it was written I just don't know how they're going to write themselves out of what happened. So I'm going to pick this one up just to see how they get out of this jam.

Deadpool: Suicide Kings #2 - This book was pretty fun and entertaining. A lot of punch/kick/shoot-em-up, but as I said, it's interesting. It's got Deadpool, the Punisher and Daredevil (in the last panel), so how can you really go wrong with that combination? I don't think you can. This was a fun issue with a lot of bullets, dismembering and jokes in between the bullets and dismembering, and I really like the art a lot; you really can't pull off an action book with as much fighting as this issue has if you don't know what you're doing, and I enjoyed Carlo Barberi's work, which is saying a lot because I normally don't comment on art.

Secret Warriors #4 - This was an issue that didn't have a whole lot of action, but I thought it was just as good as any issue so far, it set up a lot for the next issue and I liked Dum-Dum's performance. It also has some mystery thrown in there, like is Nick Fury even a real person? That's the feeling I got when they found that room with all of the Life Model Decoy androids. They promised at the end that they were going to bring the action next month, and I can't wait. I said last week that Agents of Atlas (which is coming out again this week, which is pretty rad) and this book were the best things to come out of Secret Invasion and I still mean it.

Umbrella Academy: Dallas #6 - You know, I've been a little disappointed in the Dallas series and I think this last issue was just ok. I liked the twist about half-way through the book, but I dunno, something about the entire series has bugged me and I don't think it was as good as the first installment. It's still decent and I will continue to buy/read it, I just wasn't as impressed with the second story arc as I was with the first. It was a little disappointing in my opinion.

Wolverine #73 - Ok, what the hell is going on with the this Wolverine release schedule? #73 comes out BEFORE #72? And #72 is part 7 of 8 in that "Old Man Logan" story, but part 8 isn't listed anywhere as being released, because #73 continues into #74 and then in #75 it becomes "Dark Wolverine" and follows Dakan's story. I understand that was hard to follow, but WTF Marvel? When and where the hell does this Old Man Logan story finish up? And why the delay/weird publication release? (::UPDATED:: I guess there's going to be a giant-sized Wolverine one-shot that finishes it up. Awesome. I bet it's at least $3.99 and wouldn't be surprised if it's $4.99. Thanks, Marvel.)

ANYWAYS, I actually thought this issue was pretty fun. I really loved the first story, "A Day In The Life" by Jason Aaron and art by Adam Kubert. It was basically eight pages with a bunch of throw-away panels on each page. But it was so well done, it actually took me awhile to read it even though there was barely any dialogue because I was checking out every panel and laughing. Very well done story.

X-Factor #43 - I like to check in on X-Factor every once-in-awhile when there's an interesting issue in the previews, and I was kind of impressed with this one and I went back to the shop to see if they had any more back issues. There's a very interesting plot line where Madrox is stuck in the future and there's a cool future Cyclops that is pretty awesome.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Hulk Vs.

I've been meaning to write this review for awhile now.

So I saw Hulk Vs. about a month ago, it was interesting. It's kind of hard to review because there were two separate stories and each one had it's own look/problems/successes.

I guess I'll start off with Hulk Vs. Thor, which is the first one I watched. This one took awhile to get started, and to be honest, I was kind of bored for most of the movie. There are a couple of good action sequences, but then it's broken up into exposition pieces and it just gets tedious. I liked the use of the spells and magic, especially how they were expressed on the screen.

Hulk Vs. Wolverine was next, and I would say this was the better movie, but it's not by a very wide margin. It's better, it's just not head-and-shoulders above the Thor movie. It's a little more interesting because it goes into more of Wolverine's past and it kind of changes the Weapon X history (as every media version that Marvel puts out tends to do). I thought it had better guest appearances, as I am a fan of Deadpool and to a lesser extent, Sabertooth. I could have done without Omega Red, but he's pretty much a standard enemy for Wolvie now, so I understand why they put him in there.

As far as the main character goes, I like how he was portrayed in the Wolverine story a lot more; he looks a lot more like the classic Hulk than in the Thor story. They took a bunch of liberties (at least I thought) with the character design in the Thor story, and I just thought he looked better in the Wolverine story.

I rented the Blu Ray version, and, I've gotta say, the quality was pretty impressive. The animation is great, but I'm kind of glad I didn't buy it; I think one viewing was enough. Overall I thought it was pretty good, and I hope Marvel keeps developing and releasing these animated movies, they're pretty fun.

Thursday, May 14, 2009


Seriously LOST, WTF? End on a giant cliffhanger, bigger than you've ever done before (which is saying a lot) and then you drop the REAL bomb on us; no new episodes until 2010. 2010?!?

I heard talk on the local radio station that it might not be until Fall 2010, but reading Wikipedia (yeah, I know), they say that the series finale will be in May of 2010, which is not as bad as Fall, but that still means another nine months of waiting until the first episode of the final season. And I swear if it starts off soft and waits until the last three episodes to pick up the pace, there will be blood in the streets. I want action, I want a whole lot of answers, and I want them now.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Star Trek, my second post.

Saw Star Trek last night. I warn you, this is a bit of a spoiler, so if you haven't seen it, don't read fact if you have seen it, you probably don't want to read it either. Ha.

The Flaws: I was really disappointed to see this movie suffering from a minor case of Lucas-itis. There were a couple of pages taken DIRECTLY from his book on how to cheese up your over-the-top-action-sci-fi, and a couple that merely follow his theme. 
First, show the main character as a stupid kid, best if the actor is unlikable, has an attitude, and totally overacts his ONE LINE. I don't know WHY directors feel we need to see them as a kid, doing things that really don't affect or add to the greater story line. Second, scary monster scene: desolate planet, CHECK; monster to chase main character, CHECK; bigger monster that comes out of nowhere to eat the other monster, CHECK; the second monster must be huge, and must be a mash-up of every scary creature from every sci-fi movie before it, CHECK. This scene wasn't a direct frame by frame knock-off of scenes from Star Wars Crapisode 1 and 2, but it was far too eerily familiar to ignore. I absolutely hated this scene and couldn't wait for it to end...again, completely worthless for the plot and the character.

The major idea from the Lucas book is killing the consistency of your franchise. One way to do this, that Star Trek suffered from in a way, is to make sure to overdo your ship, weapon, and character design for episodes that are supposed to take place in the past. I was relieved when they showed the exterior of the Enterprise for the first time, they really did justice to the original while updating it minimally. But, I was a little disappointed when they got to the bridge. They kept much of the essence of the original bridge: the overall layout and the size, but I really feel they had way too many fancy technological gadgets and screens (again feeling very Star Wars), and the stark, sterile white was a bit much. The two areas I was most unhappy with though were the beaming effects and the phasers. The original series and Enterprise were very primitive; I don't understand why they felt that wouldn't work and why it all had to be sexed up. The swirlies for beaming just seemed goofy and distracting to me, and I was really sad to see they didn't use a phaser sound similar to the original. That's the type of stuff fans of the original eat up. They did get the beaming sound right, and that was cool, but the phasers sounded like Amidala's from Episode I, and that thing where Kirk's phaser flipped back and forth was just weird.

The $24,000 question, how do you reboot a LONG running series without getting stuck adhering to, or referencing all of the old stories and lore? Throw in an alternate reality timeline. On the one hand, it was a little cheap of Abrams to go this route, on the other hand, it does actually hold with the Star Trek lore that time travel is possible, so it does fit. This both saddens me, and makes me excited. I'm bummed that we aren't going to get to see the updated versions of some of the old stuff, but I'm excited to see where the series goes. Though, I'd be willing to lay down plenty of money that says they go overboard in the next one, trying to outdo the excitement and special effects of this one.

The Characters: The casting for this was pretty well done. The kid Kirk was horrid, but Chris Pine did a good job as the adult Kirk. He was a bit over the top at times, but still did a fairly believable job. Zachary Quinto was exactly what you'd expect. We've seen enough of him as Sylar to know he could do the borderline eerie character of Spock perfectly. John Cho as Sulu, was just a result of needing to casting an asian guy. We lose out on George Takai's bizarrely deep voice, but gain a very strong actor that is just fun to watch on screen. Anton Yelchin from Charley Bartlett fame (worth a watch, if you haven't seen it) was an interesting cast as the campy Checkov character. They really played up the cheese on him, but still managed to create a likable character.

I thought it was a little odd to see British funny man Simon Pegg (of Shawn of the Dead fame) playing Scotty. He did a good job and he's going to be funny in the series, but it's just a little weird. Bruce Greenwood was great as Captain Pike, a very commanding character who fit more as captain than any of the other characters in the movie. And the only other characters I haven't mentioned are Uhura and Spock Prime, so there, I've mentioned them. 

All told, I really enjoyed this movie. Looking back, I'm disappointed that they spent so much time with set-up, but the bar brawl scene, and some of the set-up scenes did actually manage to add to the story. It was great seeing the characters together, and the Star Trek universe is almost always an exciting one. Hopefully in the next episode they'll do some of the quintessential planet exploring with an away team...and I pray to God that if they do, they include the gag where the dude in a red shirt gets killed. I swear, every episode of the original series, the landing party would be Kirk, Spock, Bones, Sulu, and some random guy you've never seen before in a red (or was it blue) shirt who inevitably fell prey to some monster, booby trap, or man-eating plant. 

And there you have it, my post for the decade. I'll check back in with another review when they reboot the Buck Rogers series.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Star Trek

I had a chance to catch Star Trek this past weekend and I have to admit that I loved it. My previous experience with Star Trek is highly limited - I watched the pilot episode of the original series on Netflix online, and I think I saw the movie with the Borgs at some point. My knowledge of Trek is at a rookie level and I absolutely loved the movie. The concept of the time travel was well done and well laid out - it honors what the TV show did while establishing a new set of parameters for these younger actors to take over. There's a lot of ground to cover and a lot to balance between pleasing the hardcore fans and the people who know nothing. I've been looking up some of the Star Trek lore on Wikipedia the last few days and I've queued the first two original movies on Netflix. I dare say there may be room in my heart for both Star Trek and Star Wars. *gasp!*

Friday, May 8, 2009

May 2009 Reads Part I.

I haven't done this in awhile, so we'll see how long this lasts. On my heavy weeks, I probably won't get to every book, but I figure I can easily cover the lighter weeks. So, here we go.

Agents of Atlas #4 - I really love this series. It's been a very pleasant surprise and I think along with Secret Warriors, it's been one of the best titles to come out of the Secret Invasion crossover (yeah, Dark Avengers, not so much). A lot of people may say that the flashback plot device has been done before, but I like it and it makes sense; they never use it to the detriment of the story. I also like that it a robot and a talking Gorilla as part of the regular cast.

Cable #14 - Man, there has been a lot of filler in the last couple of issues, so I'm glad things are finally starting to pick up. I almost dropped it a couple of months ago, because it was booooooorrrrinnnnng, but then I found out that it was going to be one of the Messiah War books, so I decided to keep with it for a few more issues. I can't say that I'm glad I did, but this crossover has been interesting and, as I said before, now it's finally starting to get somewhere. I loved the Apocalypse sighting near the end, and I'm positive that he's going to be involved at some point, and that's the main reason why I'm going to keep buying.

Deadpool #10 - I know Deadpool is kind of a polarizing character, people either love him or hate him, but I just love reading this book, it's so much fun. I think people in the "hate" camp might like Deadpool a little better when they see what Danny Way has done with the character. I think this and the next couple of issues are going to be great because of Bullseye's involvement. I loved the set up and the start of the battle and the fact that they seem to be trying to one-up each other. It was just a really fun book with a nice balance and I highly suggest picking it up.

New Mutants #1 - Wow. This was pretty impressive. The Young X-Men make an appearance early on in the book and I'm hoping they integrate them a lot more, but I'm a little worried because Cannonball and the rest of the New Mutants kind of take an adversarial role in dealing with the younger group. I was kind of hoping that they'd be more like role models to the other kids as a way to integrate them into the story. Anyways, I like this one a lot, it flows very nicely, every panel seems to be there for a reason. One funny sidenote; I had read about the ending in one of those Marvel interviews with the writer, but then forgot about it, and when I read the ending, it still sort of shocked me. Then I went back and read a few pages and it made sense. So, it's really well written and it doesn't give away a whole lot until it needs to. I'm really looking forward to the next couple of issues.

War of Kings #3 - You know, I'm really digging this War of Kings crossover. It does help that one of my favorite books, Guardians of the Galaxy, is heavily involved in the plot line, but I do like "the cosmic stuff" even though I don't have a lot of background in it. As a kid, I loved any story with The Starjammers in it, and they are pretty much front and center in this story. I also always liked Havok, so it's cool to see him in a prominent, leadership role. This issue had a major, game-changing twist in it, and I like where it's going. I want to see how it concludes and how it effects the other titles I read that are involved in this thing. It's been pretty fun so far, so I'm expecting a good finish.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men. Oh and a Danny Way interview.

*Sigh* I guess it was bound to happen; the Dark Reign crossovers are starting. The X-Men are first. I have two questions; 1. Why is this a six-issue series, when most of the other series lately have been four? And 2. $3.99? Seriously? *Sigh* Sometimes I really hate collecting comics.

There's also an article on Marvel's site that is an interview with Danny Way. He talks about what's going on in Deadpool and Wolverine series. It's a pretty cool interview.

Monday, May 4, 2009

X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Review #2.

Like Chris said, I thought the movie was good, not great, but it was entertaining. They did change A LOT of his backstory, but it wasn't anything major or substantial enough to get anyone riled up about it.

It was kind of disappointing that they did not include the Weapon-X training after the adamantium-bonding session, because I always liked the way the gear Wolvie wore for that was designed. And it would have explained that they were developing it to use on Wade later.

There were some annoying plot holes though. #1 - Gambit comes back during the alley scene (and runs on top of the rooftops for some strange reason) to fight Wolvie so Sabretooth could get away. Then they join forces to go to "the island". It was such an obvious set-up for the end of the movie. #2 - When he escapes from the Weapon X facility and shacks up with that old couple, then they are killed by Agent Zero. Again, it was just an obvious sequence where they needed to move the movie along to the next major plot point and the old couple was just discarded when they weren't needed anymore. In fact, a lot of characters were just discarded when they weren't needed, like John Wraith. I hate, but at least they could have kept the character in the movie a little longer.

Something that always bugs me in movies is when they are in one part of the country and then they need to get to another part of the country, so they just drive there and they just cut it to when they arrive. It's just lazy writing. Like Wolvie was obviously in the Mid-west where he gets the motorcycle from the old couple, but then drives to Vegas, and he doesn't have any money on him mind you, and then he and John Wraith drive to New Orleans. Right.

Something that also slightly annoyed me was including Cyclops in the movie. Was that really even necessary? I mean, I thought it was cool and all, and having it set up that the Professor picked him up was nice, but it really didn't serve any kind of purpose, just a cheap way to get the fan-boys excited.

I know I listed a lot of negatives, but it was entertaining, I didn't look at my watch once, so it does keep your attention on the screen. I would give it a slightly above-average rating though, I don't know if that's because I was expecting a lot more than they delivered, but that's what I though; good not great.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

X-Men Origins: Wolverine.

Okay, first things first - did they really need to title this movie X-Men Origins: Wolverine? Does anyone not know who Wolverine after three X-Men movies grossed over $600 million? I guess they did so you kind of get the sense that this doesn't pick up where X-Men: The Last Stand left off, which it definitely doesn't. In fact, it doesn't even make it into the 1980s but we'll get to that. Spoilers ahead!

Overall, I thought the film was good but not great. Some of the love story stuff with Silver Fox seemed to drag on, and some of the new characters they introduced didn't enhance anything, like Bolt and Blob. They were just kind of there but I guess they had to set up the whole black ops team storyline. The introduction of Gambit was nice, and I think Ryan Reynolds did a great job of Deadpool. I didn't really like how he kinda came back in the end but whatever.

Apparently there are two different post credits scenes depending on whichever one they show.

Overall, I give the movie 4 out of 5 stars. A good ride but left me wishing for something a little more.