Comic News Insider Episode 744 – CNI’s Best of 2016!

Comic News Insider: Episode 744 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

It’s our Best of 2016! And just like last year, Jimmy sits down with The Beat’s Heidi MacDonald and good pal Jon Hoche to go over their 2016 favorites in comic books, TV and film. They didn’t read or watch everything released that year, so it’s just the Best of what they did read/watch. Fun discussions on great comics, their creators, TV shows, films, actors and more. What were your favorites last year? Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love! Also, get a hold of us!

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Comic News Insider Episode 719 – Star Trek: Mission CNI!

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Comic News Insider: Episode 719 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

Reviews: All-Star Batman #1, Backstagers #1, Betty and Veronica #1, Evil Heroes #1, The Hellblazer #1, Predator vs Judge Dredd vs Aliens #1. Stranger Things, Penny Dreadful (series finale), Preacher (finale), The Tick (pilot), Fear the Walking Dead. Suicide Squad

We’re back! After a 6 week hiatus filled with San Diego Comic Con coverage goodness, Jimmy and Emily return with an episode full of reviews (like, lots of them!)) and news and all sorts of nerdy stuff. Jimmy attended Star Trek Misson New York and gives his recap. News includes: multiple new heroes will be appearing in various superhero shows, the Nimona audiobook gets a full cast, Brie Larson is Captain Marvel, Zendaya is Mary Jane Watson, Rob Liefeld is bringing back Youngblood to Image Comics, Riri Williams will be Ironheart, the Invincible comic will end with issue #144, Supergirl and The Flash will crossover in a 2 episode musical event, a new animated movie Batman: Return of the Caped Crusader will feature the voices of Adam West/Burt Ward/Julie Newmar, and much more! Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love! Also, get a hold of us!

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Comic News Insider Episode 667 – Foley Artist Edition!

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Comic News Insider: Episode 667 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

Reviews: A-Force Vol 2 #1, Last Contract #1, Lone Wolf 2100 Vol 2 #1, Obi-Wan and Anakin #1, The Shannara Chronicles

Jimmy is joined in studio by regular co-host Jon Hoche and newcomer/future foley artist Megan Bussiere! They chat some more Best of 2015 that they forgot about, Jimmy’s going to guest on another podcast and they focus on The Force before heading off to see Star Wars: The Force Awakens for the 3rd time (2nd for Megan)! News includes: Gene Yang named national ambassador for Young People’s Literature. Netflix will launch new Dreamworks Animation shows including Voltron, The Venture Bros. season 6 premieres January 31st, KaBoom! Studios is making Over the Garden Wall an ongoing series and the final hour long episode of Gravity Falls will air February 15. Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love! Also, get a hold of us!

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Comic News Insider Episode 666 – Best of 2015!

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Comic News Insider: Episode 666 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

It’s our Best of 2015! Jimmy sits down with The Beat’s Heidi MacDonald and good pal Jon Hoche to go over their 2015 favorites in comic books, TV and film. They didn’t read or watch everything released that year, so it’s just the Best of what they did read/watch. Fun discussions on great comics, their creators, TV shows, films, actors and more. What were your favorites last year? Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love! Also, get a hold of us!

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Thanks for listening!

Comic News Insider Episode 615 – Holding Out For A Heroes Con!

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Comic News Insider: Episode 615 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

Reviews: 1602 Witch Hunter Angela #1, Captain Marvel and the Carol Corps #1, Constantine The Hellblazer #1, Marvel Zombies Vol 6 #1, Section 8 #1, Starfire Vol 2 #1, Defiance S3 premiere, Dark Matter, Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, Game of Thrones S5 finale, Jurassic World

Due to a crazy schedule before leaving for Heroes Con this weekend, Jimmy has to do a quickie solo episode. Down at Heroes Con, Jimmy will be moderating both the DC Comics and Image Comics panels. And, he’ll be getting as many interviews as he can, as per usual! LOADS of reviews from comics, TV and film this week. News includes: Titan Comics will publish comics based on the upcoming NBC series Heroes Reborn, Fox animation has picked up the rights to Noelle Stevenson’s Nimona, The Simpsons showrunner Al Jean clears up the Homer/Marge split story for the upcoming season 27, Chiwetel Ejiofor has been cast as Baron Mordo in the upcoming Doctor Strange film, Starz has greenlit Neil Gaiman’s America Gods, E3 news and more! Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love!

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Episode 139: Reviews of Mike’s Place, Nimona, and Optic Nerve #14

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Terror, Teens, and Tatsumi

This week on the podcast, Derek and Andy W. discuss three new and very different titles. They begin with a narrative based in reality, Mike’s Place: A True Story of Love, Blues, and Terror in Tel Aviv, written by Jack Baxter and Joshua Faudem, with art by Koren Shadmi (First Second). MikesPlaceThis is the story of an American who travels to Israel to make a documentary, teams up with an Israeli film student, and then learns firsthand both the promises and the dangers of the conflicted culture. Mike’s Place is beachfront bar in Tel Aviv where politics and religion are checked at the front door. It’s sacred text is written with music, drink, and multicultural camaraderie. But the filmmakers soon learn that safe havens, political and personal, can be a tenuous proposition. Andy and Derek highlight the authors’ evenhanded approach to their politically charged subject matter as well as their ability to make Mike’s Place a story of community, not a single-minded treatise. And after all of that reality, the Two Guys head in the opposite direction with fantasy. Noelle Stevenson’s Nimona (HarperCollins) is a story with supervillains, shapeshifters, and lots of cool scheming. This was a highly popular webcomic — in fact, it’s nominated in that category for this year’s Eisner Awards — thatNimonaInterior is now high-production trade paperback. Overall, both of the guys like the book, however, both of them also have problems with Stevenson’s narrative. Andy feels that the author changes the rules of her storytelling as the book progresses, giving it an uneven feel. And Derek has problems with the pacing and overall story coherency. There are some scenes that are much too decompressed, and at times the dialogue is bloated and meandering. In many ways, the guys see Nimona as illustrative example of how popular webcomics may not successfully translate into other narrative platforms. Stevenson’s style might have resonated with devoted web readers, eagerly awaiting each digital installment, but that kind of storytelling isn’t always as effective (or as convincing) when presented as a singular text. Standing in stark contrast is the final title that Derek and Andy discuss, Optic Nerve #14, by Adrian Tomine. As he reveals in the issue’s final self-depricating one-pager, Tomine has tried to resist the OpticNerve14instantaneous, immediately gratifying world of digital publication and social media. This latest issue of his signature series, published by Drawn and Quarterly since 1995, is divided into two main stories. “Killing and Dying” is a family drama surrounding a teenager’s desire to become a standup comedian, and “Intruders,” dedicated to Yoshihiro Tatsumi, is an unsettling story about a soldier between tours of duty trying to reacquaint himself with his former life. Each is a brilliant example of Tomine’s skills as a storyteller, his abilities to take common, everyday premises and invest in them profound themes. Issue #14 is reminiscent of the previous two issues of Optic Nerve — structured similarly, presented similarly, and packaged similarly — and all three will soon be collected together in Killing and Dying. Much like the guys felt about Seth and Palookaville last month, both Derek and Andy see Adrian Tomine as one of the most important comics artists working today, and his art is a careful, measured testament to medium’s potential.

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Comics Alternative Episode 130: Reviews of The Age of Selfishness, Lumberjanes Vol. 1, and Past Aways #1

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What the Junk?!

On this episode of the podcast, Andy and Derek review three new titles, each of which is a brief glimpse into a facet of our diverse comics culture. They begin by looking at the new book from Darryl Cunningham, The Age of Selfishness: Ayn Rand, Morality, and the Financial Crisis (Abrams AgeOfSelfishnessComicArs). This work is an extended essay focusing on the life and philosophy of Rand, the contribution of her objectivist ideas to the 2008 financial crisis, and a general discussion on growing libertarian selfishness of Western culture. In fact, the book is divided into three parts, each of which is devoted to one of these three components. The guys discuss Cunningham’s structural approach when presenting his arguments. Andy feels that the three parts work fairly well together, although Derek isn’t as convinced that the book as a whole has the appropriate balance. For examples, the references to Rand’s philosophy in the second part of the book, “The Crash,” are sporadic and could have been more deeply ingrained. As a result, the transition from the first part of the text, a broad biography of Ayn Rand, to the discussion on the 2008 crash that follows seems to separate two different projects. Still, Cunningham is able to weave his points together through references to Rand’s disciples, the most prominent of which is Alan Greenspan. The Age of Selfishness is definitely an editorializing work with a left-leaning bent — which is OK with the guys — although at times the author tries almost too hard to be evenhanded. Next, Derek and Andy talk about a comic that they’ve been meaning to discuss for some time, Lumberjanes (BOOM! Box). LumberjanesJunkIn their first collected trade, Noelle Stevenson, Grace Ellis, and Brooke Allen introduce the adventuresome girl team by plunging readers directly into the thick of things, involving yetis, animated statues, werescouts, a mysterious bearwoman, and the subtitular “kitten holy.” This initial volume collects the first four issues of the series, which began about a year ago. The guys wonder why it took so long to put out the first trade, and why this collection comprises only the first four comic books. Derek believes that issues #5, and perhaps even #6, could have been included in the first trade with it still retaining a coherent narrative. But the thing about Lumberjanes is that the storyline is tightly woven, to where it’s difficult to determine where one arc ends and another begins. That’s to the creators’ benefit, as it suggests that they have a solid story to tell and that they’re not merely writing with the typical trade cycle in mind. Finally, the Two Guys discuss the inaugural issue of the new series from Matt Kindt and Scott Kolins, Past Aways (Dark Horse). This is a time-travel  narrative, although one with a different twist. Five explorers from our future are trapped in the early PastAways1twenty-first century, and after a year of being stranded, they drift apart with each going his or her separate way. The opening event in this first issue is what draws everyone back to a common purpose, so in many ways Past Aways has a superhero-ish “getting the team back together” kind of feel. The prelude to this new series actually appeared a couple of months ago in Dark Horse Presents #6 — and the guys briefly discuss that story — but readers do not have to have read that introduction to get into this first issue. Kindt is one of Andy and Derek’s favorite creators, and they love Kolins’s mainstream work in titles such as The Flash. So this new series will be a no-brainer for the guys. They’re on board for the long haul and hope the haul goes on for some time!

REMEMBER: if you’re in the South Carolina area on
Saturday, April 11, check out the

Sumter Comics Art Symposium

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Comic News Insider Episode 596 – Live Long and Prosper

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Reviews: Black Hood #1, Curb Stomp #1, D4VE #1, Orphan Black #1, Spider-Gwen #1, Thor Annual, Agent Carter finale, Sleepy Hollow finale  

The podcast wife Erica Schultz is back again by popular demand! She and Jimmy chat briefly about that sweet Power/Rangers fan film, the recent Star Wars Rebels reveal and give some major love to the late Leonard Nimoy. News includes: Noelle Stevenson is reviving The Runaways, CW’s The Flash and Arrow spawn spinoffs, Adventure Time is heading to the big screen, Joe Madureira’s Battle Chasers may be returning, House DeFraction inks a TV deal, DuckTales returns, Harrison Ford is coming back to Blade Runner, Netflix is bringing original/rebooted cartoons, Grace Helbig and Hannah Hart are Electra Woman and DynaGirl, and more casting for Supergirl, Lucifer and Daredevil. Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love!

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Comic News Insider Episode 589 – CNI Favorites of 2014!

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Comic News Insider: Episode 589 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

Jimmy is joined in studio by The Beat’s own Heidi MacDonald and frequent co-host/pal Jon Hoche! They dive in deep and have a lengthy/lively discussion on their 2014 favorites in comic books, TV, animation, film, video games and more. So much love shown to a lot of the people and things we loved in 2014. Did we leave anything out? You’ll have to tune in for that answer and let us know your picks of the year! We do cover some news as well that includes: Image Expo announces massive slate of titles to be released, Emerald City Comic Con partners with ReedPop, animated Vixen series coming to the CW Seed, and Kate Beaton’s new collection Step Aside, Pops will be released from Drawn & Quarterly this September. Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love!

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