Wait, What? Ep. 131: Linkpocalypse

 photo 084ccc28-f6fd-4588-82c8-f035c8c2702c_zpsbfe14488.jpgMotofumi Kobayashi's Cat Shit One: Another great reason to love comics.

Yes, okay! As always, I have nothing clever to say in this space, but unlike always, I'm not going to waste your time saying it. I've got show notes with images! Links! Prizes! (There are no prizes!) Torrid confessions! (There probably will not be any torrid confessions.)

After the jump: Show Note Machine...Go!

0:00-25:22: Bemoaning the fact that we're not nearly as organized as other podcasts, Graeme makes a prediction about we'll be talking about this episode as a way of introducing this episode to listeners. This allows me to retool a favorite aphorism here in the show notes:  "If you want to make God laugh, introduce a podcast." It leads right into our first order of business:  talking about the latest crazy developments in DC's 3-D cover event.  If you've already read Hibbs' post about this already, you'll be a step ahead of most of the points Jeff makes here, although he does bring his own unique tin foil hat spin to the situation.  Also covered, the recent decision in Kirby v. Marvel,  what it means to "hamburger a muffin" and the opening of a  new Salt & Straw right near Graeme. Verily, this is the Mighty Wait, What? Age of Golden Epicureanism! 25:22-34:07:  Also on a non-comics tip, Stephen Colbert and Bryan Cranston, which famous people we've been compared to, the Adult BMI guidelines, Tarder Sauce, and more. 34:07-45:37:  Todd McFarlane, Len Wein and Gerry Conway discussing sexism and comic books! which we discuss without the context provided by some later tweets made by Conway.  And who is…. the Billy Joel of comics?  Find out here, along with a torrid confession from Jeff!  (Oh, okay, so there was one of those, after all.  Huh.) 45:37-58:05: And in this week's installment of "Welcome to Jeff's Big Basket of Sour Grapes," Jeff talks about a Twitter exchange between Rob Liefeld and Erik Larsen and their consideration of comic book criticism.  Graeme, trying to bring the sense, just ends up bouncing the ball of generosity off Jeff's ungenerous blockhead for an impressively long time. 58:05-1:04:00:  Also, under discussion, Mark Millar's comments about rape.  You probably can imagine our reaction to that one but...maybe not? 1:04:00-1:21:40: And now it's time to talk about some comics we've read -- a little bit about AvX  (and the kindness and generosity of the Whatnauts), but also a lot about the genius that is Rogue Trooper and Cat Shit One. This leads to our we-might-as-well-make-it-official-and-call-it-weekly discussion about 2000 A.D., which in turn leads to discussion about comic book covers, which in turn leads to Velvet by Ed Brubaker and Steve Epting, 1:21:40-1:26:08: Jack Kirby's In The Days Of The Mob! It is available! It is…not cheap!  Not cheap at all! 1:26:08-1:27:21: Copra Compendium (which I can't say aloud without thinking of Weird Al-esque lyrics set to "Copacabana" which is probably why I probably called it Copra Companion half the time) Vol. 2!  Jeff loves this like burning, worries that Graeme may not.  But either way, there is so much lovely stuff, including  the panel shown below and discussed in this podcast:

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1:27:21-1:31:33:  That inspires Graeme to talk about Lynn Varley, Trevor Von Eeden, and the Kickstarter the latter is running with Don McGregor for Sabre: The Early Future Years. 1:31:33-1:34:12:  Graeme has read Cartozia Tales, the shared fantasy universe featuring some outstanding work by Jen Vaughn, Jon Lewis, Dylan Horrocks, and more. 1:34:12-1:38:34: Trilium #1 by Jeff Lemire. We've both read it.  We both discuss it. 1:38:34-1:41:55: Jeff fumbles and bumbles through some display problems to try and convey how much he digs Jaco the Galactic Patrolman by Akira Toriyama, as well as Toriyama's brilliantly dopey pre-Dragonball series, Dr. Slump.  One of the panels Jeff discusses super-briefly is this one:

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1:41:55-1:45:04: The first collection of Talon from DC!  Did Graeme like it almost as much as Jeff likes Toriyama…or even more than Jeff likes Toriyama?  Tune in and find out. 1:45:04-1:52:08: The final volume of Bakuman is out, which is very bittersweet for Jeff.  Despite the frustrations with how Viz has handled publication of this manga (and the generally anticlimactic nature of the last volume), man of man, Jeff is going to miss that series. 1:52:08-end: Closing comments! Graeme makes it sound like we won't be back next week but we will!  (I think.)

See, look at all that. Links! Images! Torrid confessions. (Well, a torrid confession.)  Nice, eh?  So you should go hear it!  It is on iTunes -- eventually -- and it is here for your convenience:

Wait, What? Ep. 131: Linkpocalypse

As always, we thank you for listening and hope you enjoy!  (Now if you excuse me, I have a new chapter of Jaco The Galactic Patrolman to go read....)

"...FLYING Bicycles Don't LEAVE Treadmarks!" COMICS! Sometimes Justice Wears A Unitard!

Look, I'll level with you. Here in the UK it's far  too hot to write intros. It's so hot I just stepped in my own face. So this is your lot.GL_Optimist_001B Ho! Ho! It am Bizarro Gary Groth! Or is it? Read on to find out as we explore the magical world of old super hero comics!

GREEN LANTERN: SECTOR 2814 Volume One Art By Dave Gibbons Inked by Dick Giordano and Mike DeCarlo Written by Len Wein Coloured by Anthony Tollin Letterd by Dave Gibbons and Ben Oda Collection and series covers by Dave Gibbons Collects Green Lantern #172-176,178 - 181 (1984) Green Lantern created by Gil Kane and John Broome DC Comics, $16.99 (2012)


For me, and never forget it’s me that matters the mostest, the most successful Green Lantern comics are those which don’t stray too far from the original concept. That of a none too bright man clad in a domino mask and a swim suit who, armed with a magic wishing ring, polices space on the behalf of some blue dudes whose lack of vertical stature is compensated for by the girth of their craniums. These issues I’m telling you about hew pretty closely to that but have a definite Earth based bent. Which is fair enough, so did the old stuff. Particularly when Hal Jordan became an insurance investigator which is the kind of sexy shit kids love. What we have here is that strange pre-Watchmen style where the old timey thrills are wrassling with new wavey soap operatics to queasy but not unentertaining effect.


Carol looks really, er, into that doesn't she? In a "private moments" kind of way?

Most of the soapy suds are provided by Hal Jordan splashing about in a big bath of ultimatums pouring ceaselessly out of the fleshy faucet of Carol Ferris’ face. Herein Ms Ferris is enjoyably portrayed as capable and independent and yet psychotically needy and emotionally demanding. It’s an endearing mix; one unlikely to cause ructions in the gender politicised readers of today. Look, Len Wein’s , and indeed that of contemporaneous Comics, portrayal of women is excusable, or at least understandable, since at this point in history men and women were ruthlessly segregated on separate landmasses, replicating by binary fission. Or maybe, and I’m just throwing this out there, characterisation in genre comics has always been a bit weird with plot tending to dictate the personality of a character at any given moment. Which tendency unfortunately flares bright with an unpleasant light in the case of ladies because there isn’t usually much more to them than the surface. The blokes have all the powers and action for the most part and as a consequence the behavioural inconsistencies pass mostly unnoticed in the case of the testicularly endowed. Men, I’m talking about men there. Of course I will say that characterisation is much better in modern genre comics because I should never underestimate the appeal of wishful thinking.

GL_Idiot_001B But sometimes a mere newspaper can tip the balance of WAR!

Fret not, capes and scrapes fans! There’s plenty of goofy nonsense going on when people aren’t talking about their feelings or shouting in boardrooms. Everything in the book feels like it takes part in the context of the wider DCU. There's even a touching sequence where Hal seeks advice from all of his super hero pals about whether to remain an emerald avenger or to chuck it in for the sake of his love, Carol. Naturally Superman offers to solve his chum’s problem by snapping Carol’s neck like a dry twig.  The pivot around which a lot of this more colourful stuff spins turns out to be The Monitor. Isn’t he the guy from Crisis On Infinite Earths? Shockingly I have never read COIE, so was under the impression that The Monitor was some Darkseid level dude, but here he’s just floating about space in his satellite HQ facilitating meetings between criminals, by telephone! Just a glorified switchboard operator with a knack for obscuring his features behind scenery. (Why? Would I recognise him? “OMG! It’s Terry from two doors down!”) Despite his reduced circumstances Monny has, apparently, the sense to equip his satellite lair with Sybil Danning in a pink pantsuit.

Other villains include The Javelin, who is hilariously bad, his one saving grace being that his presence causes the Worst Pun In The World to be unleashed on a cover. It’s “Beware The Javelin, My Son!” Give it a second…Oh, he’s also German with an accent so he is intendink to be havink der last laff. Bad accents I’m talking about there. But the bad accents get better, or worse, because there’s also a russet maned lassie whose cadences are pure County Claremount, so they are, to be sure, to be sure, BEJABBERS! And then there’s The Demolition Team who are just brazenly daft in concept. Others crop up but ,you know ,you might want some surprises suffice to say they are all outlandishly entertaining and absurd. Now, I don’t mind that myself as all this is the kind of ludicrous stuff I class as “fun” (Eeew!), but I am aware that certain sectors of today’s readership demand rather more seriousness and maturity which is why Geoff Johns exists. That’s sarcasm there. Cheap, but effective I find.

GL_Flash_001B What does Dave Gibbons never do? Short change ya! Look at all that hectic business going on!

But what of the reason I bought this book in the first place? What of dashing Dave Gibbons? Well, he’s Dave Gibbons so that’s pretty much perfect for the needs of my eyes. He’s got that lovely Wallace wood by way of C C Beck thing going on. He discretely balances realism and cartooning basically, and you may think his work errs toward s the generic. Then you may realise just how many blonde Caucasian men in their early thirties he has to draw here and you may reconsider and instead may marvel at the fact that he makes each one distinct. Sure, Gibbons’ ladies can be a bit frumpy tending towards the matronly both in width of hip and wadrobe choice, but they do look like people rather than tit support systems. There’s plenty of slobberknockery in here and Gibbons' action is never unclear and his storytelling is efficient and engaging even when confined to the boardroom; the charnel house of my attention. However, reading this book it becomes apparent that grace isn’t really in Gibbons’ artistic arsenal. Usually this is not really an issue but any Green Lantern artist is up against The Gil Kane. Which is probably a bit unfair, because anyone suffers against that. Kane could make a man straining at stool appear elegant and lithe never mind a masked idiot soaring through the air like it were water. Nevertheless there is always something stilted about the body language in Gibbons’ characters . There isn’t so much a sense of motion occurring but of motion being captured. But it’s catching that motion, or seeming to, that makes you Gil Kane. Dave Gibbons may not be Gil Kane but he is Dave Gibbons and that’s a whole lot more than most other artists.

I enjoyed this book but then I have a high tolerance for daft action hi-jinks layered in with endearingly clumsy interpersonal conflicts. Particularly if they are illustrated by a well-honed machine like Dave Gibbons. Which is why I thought this was GOOD! I'll fight any man jack who denies that Green Lantern by Dave Gibbons is - COMICS!!!

Wait, What? Ep. 118: Skypenet Techpocalypse

Why, yes, Stevie Wonder performing Superstition on Sesame Street is indeed relevant to this week's podcast, thanks for asking!

After the jump, somewhat hasty show notes for our somewhat hasty episode (less than two hours?  What has happened to us?)

Yeah, so it's funny.  Recently, we got an incredibly encouraging and generous email from a listener who was, unfortunately, fed up with listening to Graeme and I stumble about, complaining and crying out, whenever a tech problem popped up.  As a result, we made a promise to edit all that shit right out and do our best to master the arcane powers that control whether or not we're able to podcast.

And then this podcast happened.  To which I can only say:  We tried, generous Whatnaut, we tried.

And with that foreboding note:

0:00-11:37:  "Something horrible is going to happen."  Oh, if only we had known… Despite promising all of you (though some of you more than others), we would avoid tech problems talk, this episode was a bit of a challenge for us (as you'll regrettably hear).  Anyway, our brief bit of non-comic talk at the opening includes the nature of consciousness, Stevie Wonder on Sesame Street (see?  Relevant!), the stomach flu (a discussion of which you might find it a relief the volume drops out once or twice), appendicitis, and finally... 11:37-30:23:  Comics talk!  We have two weeks of comics news and comics to catch up on--let's start by talking about the first two issues of Age of Ultron. We are not down with it, but!  Jeff is enjoying both All-New X-Men and Uncanny X-Men by Brian Bendis. We talk about all of these things, in more-or-less a random order. 30:23-1:06:57:  Oh, and Doctor Timebomb asked us about doing  a post-mortem on Before Watchmen.  Jeff's refused to read them so he's not much help, but Graeme….well, Graeme is a different story altogether.  Operation: Blow Jeff's Mind is in full effect!  Oh, and we also come up with one of the best marketing campaigns of all time.  You're welcome, DC. 1:06:57-1:12:15:  And then for whatever reason, Jeff ends up talking about Bendis again.  Go figure. 1:12:15-1:17:35: Graeme and I speculate on what amazing seemingly passive-aggressive battle is being waged between Marc-Oliver Frisch and Heidi and/or the comics blogosphere at large over the monthly DC sales analysis over at The Beat.  Then, it's time for our moment of admiration for House to Astonish, and that leads us to: 1:17:35-1:17:57: Intermission #1! (Oh, stinger music, how I've missed you.) 1:17:58-1:31:22: Marvel 700 on Comixology!  (Alternate title:  Jeff's confession of self-abasement!)  We try to wrap our brain around what was intended with the giveaway, what was achieved, and Jeff links once again to Todd Allen's article about digital comics codes in which Jeff is quoted. Because, yeah, that's the way Jeff rolls. 1:31:22-1:36:36: Another way Jeff rolls?  With The Hulk.  With an eye toward maybe putting together a Tumblr that bites its style and charm from the FF 365 Tumblr, Jeff's been reading a lot of early issues of the Hulk.  And Giant Man.  Oh, god.  Giant Man.  Lord, does he want to tell you about Giant Man.  But then…techpocalypse! 1:36:36-1:42:25: Okay, here we are trying not make a big thing out of twenty minutes of "WTF just happened there, it was like we were split into gatefold covers and then our goofy marketing initiative name was withdrawn…" and instead we just apologize at get back to Jeff trash-talking Giant Man and what he'd really intended to talk about with Graeme:  how long it really takes for characters to click. And then…. 1:42:25-end: Techpocalypse Two! (I blame the number of times I said the name "Rick Jones" over and over right before the disconnect.) So we are reduced to me on Skype calling Graeme on his cell phone, having to apologize to everyone and then just sign off.  Because we have no idea what the hell to do.  So we're putting out this call to our more tech savvy listeners:  if you happen to know who has put us under an evil curse? If you could talk to them and get them to remove it, we would be grateful.

Episode will be on iTunes shortly, unless that email I got a few weeks ago talking about iTunes' shift in protocol has screwed us over entirely, in which case, uh, yeah.  Enjoy it while you can below, because the fiery post-tech world of the Age of Ultron has turned against us!

Wait, What? Ep. 118: Skypenet Techpocalypse!

Next week:  Hopefully more of the good stuff and less of the bad stuff!


Wait, What? Ep. 74: Who Before Watches the Before Watchmen?

Photobucket I hope you have your calendar cleared until 2014, because that's how long it's going to take before Graeme and I get to answering all your questions from this thread.

Honestly, how were we to know Before Watchmen was going to launched the day before we were scheduled to talk?  As the astute listener may note, we were pretty reluctant to launch into the topic and how clearly tried to get it out of our system beforehand...but like one of those county fair snacks gone bad, it keeps finding new and horrible ways to re-surge and expel itself.

So join us, won't you, for Wait, What? Ep. 74?  The first eighty minutes is Graeme and I talking Watchmen, Before Watchmen, Multiversity, Darwyn Cooke, Amanda Conner, Len Wein, John Higgins, Dave Gibbons and the mighty sleeveless one himself, Alan Moore.

Then for the next fifty or so, we answer your questions.  Five of them.  But in the course of doing so, we also manage to gas on about Batman: Leviathan, Mike Baron and Steve Rude's Nexus, Jack Kirby's Machine Man, books we regret recommending, The Drops of God, Earth X, Fantastic Four, Micronauts, Chris Claremont's last storyline on Uncanny X-Men, the Image anniversary, and more.

An infernal pact was made and sanctified with waffles to bring you the latest episode on iTunes, but an emergent loophole allowed us to also share it with you here and now:

Wait, What? Ep. 74: Who Befores Watches The Before Watchmen?

We hope you enjoy, and as always, thanks for listening!