Comics Alternative, Episode 241: Reviews of Boundless and User

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Time Codes:

  • 00:01:23 – Introduction
  • 00:05:11 – Welcome new Patreon supporters!
  • 00:08:34 – Boundless
  • 00:44:55 – User
  • 01:16:41 – Wrap up
  • 01:17:43 – Contact us

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Reality Askew

This week on the review show Paul joins Derek in discussing two new recent releases. They begin with Jillian Tamaki’s Boundless, published by Drawn and Quarterly. This is a collection of nine short stories, most of which have been previously published in FrontierNobrow, and Hazlitt.net. The guys begin by discussing how Tamaki structures the contents, along with including new pieces, in order to give the collection visual and thematic coherency. Unlike her longer narratives Skim and This One Summer, both with her cousin Mariko, Tamaki tends to use the shorter storytelling forms to create pieces that are slightly askew and bend the reality that we know.

Next, Paul and Derek turn to Devin Grayson, John Bolton, and Sean Phillips’s User (Image Comics). This was originally published as a three-issue prestige-format miniseries through Vertigo Comics in 2001, but until now has never been collected in a single volume. User is the tale of a young woman finding refuge in a MUD, escaping the chaos that surrounds her real-life work and family. What makes the narrative notable is its handling of online interaction and gender identification, quite provocative at the time of its original publication. And while the guys appreciate what Grayson and company are doing, they note the slightly dated nature of this comic. As they point out, understanding the temporal context puts everything into perspective.

Deconstructing Comics #508: A Fading Murder, a Fracturing Convention

The Fade Out The Fade Out is Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips, and Elizabeth Breitweiser‘s nuanced, subtly told, complex story of Hollywood in 1948, revolving around a secret deal between a writer who can’t write because of PTSD sustained in the war and another writer who’s been blacklisted as a communist. We touch on some of our favorite little-noted details in the story.Why is Brubaker repeatedly attracted to “noir”-type stories? While Sean Phillips’ art is great, and he digests photo reference into his art better than some do, do some of the limitations of that method still show through? Tim and Brandon discuss.
Kumar journeyed so San Diego for the Comic-con this year, for the first time in twelve years. How has the event changed in that time? Who did Kumar get to meet this year? How did he work around the crowds? We get his report.
The Fade Out

Deconstructing Comics site

Comics Alternative, Episode 198: Reviews of The Blue Dahlia, Kill or Be Killed #1, and Sombra #1

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Moral Black Holes

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This week the Two Guys with PhDs turn their attention to three recent noir titles. But before they jump into their reviews, they talk about comics news and recent awards.

First, they congratulate Sonny Liew on receiving this year’s Singapore Literature Prize for English fiction for his best-selling work The Art Of Charlie Chan Hock Chye. This comes on the heels of him getting the Book of the Year accolade at the Singapore Book Awards, held in May.

Next, Andy and Derek say a few words about the results of this year’s Eisner Awards, announced at SDCC last Friday. The guys note that there are really no surprises in the winners, and that with perhaps one or two exceptions, those coming out on top in their categories make perfect sense. They are particularly pleased that so many of the titles and creators that they’ve discussed on the podcast received this recognition, and they are especially excited that so many friends of the show — such as Craig Yoe and Tom Heintjes — received the coveted Eisner.

After all of the awards talk, the guys get into the nitty gritty of this week’s episode. They start off with an adaptation of James Ellroy’s The Black Dahlia (BOOM! Studios/Archaia), the first in the novelist’s L.A. Quartet. Adapted by Matz and David Fincher, and with art by Miles Hyman, the story springs from the real-life murder of Elizabeth Short in 1947. As with the original book, this graphic novel reveals the dark underside of Los Angeles and the post-war days of its entertainment industry. And it contains all of the icons and tropes that define noir narrative.

From there the guys turn to the latest collaboration from the superb crime-writing team of Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips, and Elizabeth Breitweiser, Kill or Be Killed #1 (Image Comics). This first issue has all of the trappings of the kind of stories we’ve come to expect from Brubaker and Phillips (e.g., The Fade OutCriminalSleeper), but there’s a particular twist to the plot that recalls the supernatural tinges of Fatale. In fact, Derek and Andy aren’t sure if what happens in the story is because of other-worldly forces or just the result of psychological imbalance.

Finally, the guys wrap up with yet another crime comic, Justin Jordan and Raul Trevino’s Sombra #1 (BOOM! Studios). This story revolves around a young DEA agent, Danielle, and the mystery surrounding the disappearance of her father, also an agent. This first issue takes the narrative into some dark places, and the guys focus on this comic as a retelling of Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness. In fact, the missing DEA agent is name Conrad Marlowe. How appropriate!

KillOrBeKilled-interior

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Comics Alternative – Episode 128: Reviews of Tex the Lonesome Rider, Sweatshop, and Criminal Special Edition

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Genre Smorgasbord

TexThis week, Derek and Andy W. discuss recent titles that span the genre spectrum. First they look at the new release from Dark Horse, the English-language release of Claudio Nizzi and Joe Kubert’s Tex the Lonesome Rider. Based on the famous American Western character created in 1948 by Giovanni Luigi Bonelli, this book was originally released in Italian and is now being published in the states in a beautiful hardbound volume. (Dark Horse had released the first part of this story in 2005 as Four Killers, Vol. 1: The Bartlett Brothers, and that same year SAF Comics published the entire story in English, but those books are long out of print.) The guys approach Nizzi’s treatment of Tex Willer as a classic Western, but one that isn’t afraid to delve into the darker, violent side of the genre. In fact, Andy argues that much of the story, underscored by Kubert’s art, owes a debt to noir narrative, and that one could arguably read this as Western noir. Although Tex is a famous figure in Italian comics, he is much less known in the United States, and indeed, both Derek and Andy admit that before this new release, they didn’t know much of anything about Tex and his history. SweatshopInsideBut Tex the Lonesome Rider is the prefect introduction to the character, meticulously rendered by the legendary Kubert, and the guys hope that there will be more translated Tex stories to come. Next, they review the new collection from Peter Bagge, Sweatshop (Fantagraphics). Although this book was just released, Sweatshop isn’t a new comic. It was first serialized by DC Comics during the last half of 2003, but it was canceled after only six issues. Now, the short-lived series is finally collected in a trade paperback, and if you’re not familiar with the work of Peter Bagge, then this would be the prefect place to start. Reminiscent of Bagge’s classic Hate, the story revolves around a self-centered and crotchety newspaper cartoonist and the young people he has working for him on the strip. Illustrated not only by CriminalSpecialEditionBagge, but also by Stephen DeStafano, Johnny Ryan, Stephanie Gladden, and Bill Wray, Sweatshop is a humorous, and at times sarcastically biting, look at the comics industry and the personalities that strut across its stage. Finally, Andy and Derek leap into Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips’s Criminal Special Edition (Image), a one-shot oversized comic that takes us back into the creators’ seminal world of noir. Released to help draw attention to the new editions of Criminal published through Image — the original series came out through Marvel’s Icon imprint between 2006 and 2011 — this special edition is also an homage to the kind of sword-and-sorcery magazine-sized comics that appeared in the 1970s. The result is not only a curious pairing of genres, but more significantly, a narratively sophisticated return to a noir world that would eventually lead to such titles as Fatale and The Fade Out. If you’re a fan of crime comics, Criminal Special Edition is essential reading.

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Feed It Comics #47 | Posers

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Doc is joined by the quietly ubiquitous Professor Ryefleur, who diverts his attention away from RhymesWithGeek.com just long enough to have a fruitful conversation about recent headlines, and even helps review some comics!

We talk Doctor Who, Milo Manara’s “Spider-Woman” #1 variant cover drawing some criticism for being too sexy, Alan Moore’s video game and energy drink, and Frank Miller’s disdain for all screen versions of Batman. THEN we review “The Fade Out” #1 by image comics, “Little Nemo: Return to Slumberland” By IDW, and Dark Horse’s new Tim Seeley joint, “Sundowners #1”. Thanks for tuning in!

PS: Contest drawing moved to next episode when Shepherd returns.

Thanks for listening. How out of your way would you go to give us a rating or review on itunes or Stitcher 

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Music by Doc Fluxx

FIND US ON TWITTER:Doctor Fluxx | Father Shepherd |  Feed It Comics!

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Super Podcasto Magnifico! Ep. #190: Fade Out, Strain and Multiversity Reviews

Episode #190

On this podcast we’re joined by C-Bomb from Ultimate Facepalm as we talk some Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Season Two casting news. Is it a step in the right direction? Then we review The Fade Out #1, Strain: The Night Eternal #1 and The Multiversity #1. Dig it? Listen in!

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Cammy’s Comic Corner – Episode 193 (1/8/12)

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I’m baaack! With 2012 here, I return with the audio format until something I deem worthy of a video episode comes along. Pick Of The Week goes to Ed Brubaker & Sean Phillips for Fatale #1 (Image). Fast Five picks include Animal Man #5 (DC), Swamp Thing #5 (DC), Sweet Tooth #29 (Vertigo), O.M.A.C. #5 (DC), and Justice League International #5 (DC). Spoilers!

Can I just say how great it feels to be back?

Cammy’s Comic Corner – Episode 176 (7/31/11)

Back from Comic-Con, and I grace you all with a Fast Five! Picks include X-Men: Schism #2 (Marvel), The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen – Century: 1969 (Top Shelf), Criminal: The Last Of The Innocent #2 (Icon), Detective Comics #880 (DC), and Amazing Spider-Man #666 (Marvel).

It’s good to be back!

Cammy’s Comic Corner – Episode 154 (2/13/11)

Spoiler warning is definitely advised this episode. Pick Of The Week goes to Robert Kirkman & Charlie Adlard for The Walking Dead #81 (Image). Fast Five picks include R.E.B.E.L.S. #25 (DC), Incognito: Bad Influences #3 (Icon), Cinderella: Fables Are Forever #1 (Vertigo), Black Panther: The Man Without Fear #515 (Marvel), and Batgirl #18 (DC).

I would wish you all a Happy Valentines Day, but I’m a cold-hearted bastard with no date.

Gutter Trash – Episode 94: Noir

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Noir. Music by Legbone, Black Wolf Fight, and Archers of Loaf

Check out Jason’s site, Eric’s site, Ok, PANIC!, and League Night

Email Eric or Jason.

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The Fourth Wall Comics Podcast Episode 90

Show Notes:

INTRO [00:22]

mainstream:

  • [0:01:19] Secret Avengers #1
    • In which the boys explain why Ed Brubaker is like a puppy.
  • [0:10:54] Thor #610
  • [0:15:56] X-Force #27
  • [0:22:22] X-Men: Blind Science
  • [0:29:49] Thunderbolts #144
  • [0:34:42] Wolverine: Weapon X #13
  • [0:39:08] The Thanos Imperative: Ignition
  • [0:44:35] Ultimate Enemy #4 (of 4)
  • [0:48:27] Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne #2
  • [0:57:45] Power Girl #12
  • [1:03:44] Green Lantern #54
  • * [1:09:06] Green Lantern Corps #48

indies:

  • [1:12:28] 7 Psychopaths #1
  • [1:14:25] Chimichanga #2 (of 3)
  • [1:16:04] Choker #3
  • [1:17:51] Mystery Society #1 (of 6)
  • [1:22:47] Green Hornet #4

trades [1:25:58]

  • Fortune & Glory: A True Hollywood Comic Book HC
  • Wednesday Comics HC

OUTRO [1:34:27]

Cammy’s Comic Corner – Episode 118 (3/14/10)


Longer than usual episode this week! Pick Of The Week goes to Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips for Criminal: The Sinners #5 (Icon). Fast Five picks include PunisherMAX #5 (MAX), Daytripper #4 (Vertigo), Prelude To Deadpool Corps #2 (Marvel), R.E.B.E.L.S. #14 (DC), and The Mystic Hands of Doctor Strange (Marvel).

Remember, you’re only eligible for the AWESOME WonderCon prize pack if you donate to the show!

Reminder: WonderCon this April!

Teenage Wasteland Episode 58 – Brubaker This, Brubaker That

More comics. More talk. More Brubaker love. You guys get the picture by now. Enjoy.

Books Discussed
Criminal: The Sinners #3
Teen Titans Lost Annual
The Contingent #4
Daytripper #1
Incognito TPB

Music featured is by The Foo Fighters.

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Cammy’s Comic Corner – Best of 2009 (I.M.H.O.)


In this 2009 wrap-up, I discuss my favorite Writers, Artists, Series, Story Arc, Single Issue, and Hardcover.

Best Writers – Ed Brubaker, Jonathan Hickman, Peter Tomasi, Mark Waid, Geoff Johns

Best Artists – J.H. Williams III, Tony Daniel, Sean Phillips, Eric Powell, Gabriel Ba

Best Series – Detective Comics (DC), Scalped (Vertigo), Green Lantern Corps (DC), Amazing Spider-Man (Marvel), Green Lantern (DC)

Story Arc – Detective Comics #854-857 “Elegy”

Single Issue – Jonah Hex #50

Don’t agree with my picks? Complain about how wrong I am on the forum!

Cammy’s Comic Corner – Episode 94 (9/4/09)

A great week for variety! Pick of the Week goes to Garth Ennis & Carlos Ezquerra for The Boys #34 (Dynamite). Fast Five picks include Incognito #6 (Icon), Irredeemable #6 (BOOM! Studios), Northlanders #20 (Vertigo), Sir Edward Grey: Witchfinder #3 (Dark Horse), and Immortal Weapons #2 (Disney).

Remember, if you haven’t checked it out yet, the Cammy’s Comic-Con Corner 2009 video is finally up!