There will be light spoilers for the wholly ignorant, but anyone with a passing knowledge of the premise should be good to go!
There will be light spoilers for the wholly ignorant, but anyone with a passing knowledge of the premise should be good to go!
Maybe it’s old news to some of you, but I’ve recently been delighted by Pete Holmes Shows run of sketches featuring Professor X firing every member of the X-Men one by one. They’re a lot of fun, and Pete Holmes as Prof. X, pointing out the problems with everyone’s powers is pretty hilarious. So far, they’ve spoofed Wolverine, Gambit, Jubilee, Angel and Iceman, but the Wolverine interview has to be my favorite.
“If I had my way, you and Beast would be over at the airport, sniffing bags with the TSA.”
The rest of the sketches can be found on Pete Holmes’s YouTube channel.
I should be doing homework and getting ready for class on this dreary morning, but instead, the Captain America: The Winter Soldier trailer launched and I can’t stop watching it.
Captain America: The Winter Soldier may be a movie about Steve Rogers, but it’s also, as the trailer shows, a full on S.H.I.E.L.D. film. We may have a S.H.I.E.L.D. TV show, but this film seems to promise to dig deeper into the organization. We’re meeting more agents, we’re meeting FALCON (aaah!), we’re hanging with Steve and Natasha (BFFs!), we’re following dubious orders and getting to know the top people (Robert Redford!!).
This looks the least like a superhero movie of the Marvel films so far, and it fits. We are looking at a film about international spies, a peacekeeping agency who isn’t so peaceful, and a man who woke up in another century and doesn’t know how to fit in anymore.
Anyway. We have about six more agonizing months to wait for this film (at least it’s the day after my birthday), so I’ll wrap it up here. And watch the trailer a few more times.
It’s all so wonderful.
P.S. THAT FINAL WINTER SOLDIER SHOT AAAAHHHH!
“I used to have this down. It should be just muscle memory.”
SYNOPSIS: When the brilliant scientist Dr. Franklin Hall is kidnapped, Agent Coulson and his S.H.I.E.L.D. agents must race against the clock to locate him. Skye is their only way in — pushing the team to their limits when the entire plan turns upside-down.
My thoughts on this week’s episode, and hopes for a team monkey, after the jump. Spoilers abound.
Today’s spotlight is on Strawdoll, a 23 year old graphic designer from Sydney, Australia.
How did you get into comics?
My fandoms actually started from Harry Potter, anime/manga and video games! While I used to watch The Adventures of Lois and Clark and Batman movies when I was a kid, I only just started reading more comics around two years ago, after Jill recommended I read Batman: Year One and a Long Halloween. From there I went on to the Robins and Batgirl stories, as well as other Gotham residents like Huntress and the Gotham Sirens! I’ve picked up some Marvel titles after the Avengers movie came out too – I’m fond of Loki.
Do you just read comics, or do you express your love in other ways?
I’m a cosplayer, I really enjoy looking at the different versions of each characters and making them real. I’m also a cosplay photographer. I love the challenges of replicating comic book scenes and portraying the different aspects of the characters, and working width action poses you may not get with other genres.
If I get time I like to draw too!
What are some comics you’re currently reading and enjoying?
I’ve been following new Hawkeye, Batman & Robin and World’s Finest with Helena Wayne and Karen Starr. I really love those little interactions between Damian and Helena!
Who is your favorite character?
It’s hard for me to pick favourites because it’s the dynamics between characters that I love! I may also be slightly partial to villains. Their backgrounds always intrigue me.
Who are your favorite artist(s) & writer(s)?
Jim Chueng, Stanley Lau, Adam Hughes, Dustin Nguyen, Marcus To are some of my favourite artists! On writers, I’m not sure if I’ve read enough to form favorites yet, but I do enjoy Grant Morrison’s work so far.
Do you have a favorite comic storyline?
I think what I like the most is origin stories. The hero’s journey and character development is the most engaging in these kind of stories.
How do you usually buy your comics?
I like to buy trade paperbacks – more durable than a single issue, and more tangible than a digital. There’s something nicer about holding a comic book in your hands and putting your full focus on the story and artwork.
What are some things you love about comics? Some things that frustrate you?
Sometimes the misrepresentation of gender and gender roles frustrate me with how backwards the thinking is – it’s 2013, people, times have changed, your audience has changed. It also frustrates me how little people realise it too.
I like that there are different iterations of the same characters over different universes and that different writers are interpreting them all in their own ways and they are accepted as canon. It’s rare to find such flexible treatments of characters, because books and film and games are normally just one-off representations.
What does your dream book look like?
Scott Snyder and Adam Hughes do a story on Gotham Villains daily lives. It’d be a really different take, and Snyder has mentioned in an interview he tries to go for a perfect mix of wondrous and nightmarish.
Any final thoughts?
The world of comics is certainly different to the world of anime and manga, it’s refreshing to see them because of the cultures they were born from! Delving in further is definitely something I’ll be doing, I think I want to read more classic titles and stories.
If you’d like to be a part of our Reader Spotlight series, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“This is my fault. I should have learned kung-fu.”
SYNOPSIS: Coulson and his team travel to Peru to recover a mysterious artifact designated 0-8-4. However, they run up against an enemy agent, Camilla Reyes, who also wants the item.
My spoilery thoughts on this week’s episode of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s second outing after the jump.
I first reviewed Princeless almost two years ago, and since then, Jeremy Whitley and Action Lab Comics have taken big strides. Princeless is up to volume 2 now, with each issue costing only 99 cents, and Action Lab has expanded and created tons of titles, one of which is Jamal Igle’s Kickstarter project, Molly Danger.
In fact, you should read the incredibly awesome Molly Danger/Princeless Free Comic Book Day crossover. Do it, you won’t regret it.
Princeless has three things going for it that I think are incredibly important right now, both individually and separately:
You’d be hard pressed to find all three of those in any other comic these days (if you do know of any that fit the bill, pass the names along!), and that’s…well, that’s kinda sad. I can tell you that if I had Princeless when I was a ten year old discovering Tintin comics for the first time, I would have been all over it. I mean, I was twelve or thirteen when I first saw the X-Men cartoon, and Storm was my ultimate hero just because I could see someone who looked like me on TV. Miles Morales is playing that same role for colored kids who may be getting into comics for the first time, and so is Princess Adrienne.
On Bleeding Cool today, Jeremy wrote:
I’ve said a number of times that the reason I started writing “Princeless” was because I wanted a book that I could share with my daughter. I wanted her to see a girl with the power to affect her own life. I wanted her to see a girl with brown skin portrayed as a hero with agency. I didn’t want her to grow up believing that she should aspire to be like those sad little princesses that sit around in a tower and wait for their prince to come. I didn’t want her to define herself by her love interest. I wanted her to be empowered.
And isn’t that what comics is all about? Isn’t the super hero genre about empowering the little guys and girls of the world and telling them that they have the power to do the right thing and be the good person that they want to be?
All ages comics are important. Comics that provide a safe, happy space for kids to read and work their imagination in are important. No unneeded sexualization. No over the top violence. Just good old-fashioned storytelling that young kids, young girls, can relate to and find inspiration in.
And when adults like us enjoy it, well, that’s a plus.
I’ll be giving three winners a digital copy of Princeless Volume 1 through Comixology.
For a variety of (spectacularly boring) reasons, I wasn’t able to spend as much time at Baltimore Comic Con this year as I have in the past. However, I did manage to canvas the floor, meet a ton of really great artists (more on that later), see some amazing cosplayers, and generally have a good time. The vibe of the show was a little bit different this year, but there seemed to be plenty of floor traffic around the artists’ tables as well as decent crowds in the panels.
I was only able to sit through one panel this year (I missed the Marvel panel by a hair), however it was a doozy. So click the jump to check out the run down! Continue reading
Let’s just get this out of the way first: yes, there are bronies. Some of them are really weird.
Now we move on.
My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic has obviously made an impact in pop culture lately, and even among my friends. I tried to watch the first episode to see what all the fuss was about, and I have to admit: I failed the friendship test. It was just too bright, happy, and friendly for me. I’m no grouch, but man, I have my limits. My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic is the perfect show for its age range, and I was happy to move along.
Then I figured, why not try out the comics? What could that hurt?
It turns out I enjoy My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic a lot more in comic form. It’s a lot easier to ingest, and the bright colors and character design are perfect for the medium.
I haven’t read the first volume in the series, but volume two wasn’t hard to ease into. I was actually a little impressed at how each character was sketched out; for someone who wasn’t too familiar with them, I got their names and characteristic down right away. It did make me think about how fine a line the comic draws between character and caricature. This is where I’m always impressed when someone who writes for a younger age group manages to get the details across without going too far overboard. Enough for the youngest reader to understand who is doing what and why, without annoying the oldest reader. This series walks that line perfectly, and I can picture parents reading these books to their kids without getting bored themselves.
The pony crew faces something that everyone, whether big or little, has or will face in their lifetime: nightmares. Not just big scary nightmares that are obviously not reall and will go away when you wake up. These nightmares prey on the ponies’ wildest insecurities, and Rarity goes so far as to believe her nightmare entirely, becoming a vessel to the real villain of the piece. While the motto of friendship and loving one another is hammered in time and time again (that is the theme of the series, after all, and it’s a fantastic theme to be sharing with our kids today, but that is another story), the way the ponies come together to save the day is inspiring. Yes, as an adult I could see it coming, but you know what? I didn’t care. By the time I was at the end I was enjoying the story and let myself get carried away with it all.
Isn’t that what we want out of a story, anyway?
My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic is the perfect antidote to the current trend of dark and gritty adult comics. It’s fun, it’s silly, and it has a fantastic message for kids.
My Little Pony: Pony Tales is a micro-series that spends time with one pony each issue. It’s a cute collection and a peek into the lives of each pony outside of the main group. While some stories weren’t as strong as others, as a whole it was a fun read. I’ll run through each issue here, since I liked a couple much more than the rest.
Twilight Sparkle is sent by Princess Celestia to help the injured royal archive librarian to shelve books. Twilight Sparkle’s enthusiasm and love for all things involved with the archive – despite the archivist’s constant grumpy mood – was destined to make me smile from the start, and their growing relationship as the days passed was great to see. One panel in particular, which shows them warming up to each other and eventually dissolving into book talk, is one of my favorites in the entire series.
Rainbow Dash tries to get rid of some cloud gremlins hanging over Ponyville, but fails and hurts her wings in the process. I think this was my second favorite in the series, mainly because it was interesting to see what makes Rainbow Dash tick. (Remember, I’ve never seen the show.) Also, there were tons of pop cultures references in this that made me giggle from time to time.
Rarity goes to what she thinks is a spa retreat, but it ends up being a hippie farm where she has to do a ton of work. I’m a bit indifferent to Rarity in general, but I really enjoyed seeing her so obviously out of her element in this one. And while the hippie ponies seemed a bit over the top at times, there were some great gags that made it all come together. (…always watching…) Tied for second favorite.
Fluttershy secretly enters an art showing with a huge knitted sculpture she made, but she’s so fears rejection that she hides her identity. This one didn’t really make much of an impact.
Pinkie Pie‘s story revolves around her seeing and meeting Ponyacci (tee hee), her favorite pony clown ever. While it was cute (a running theme) seeing her reactions and how she helps him out, this was another one that didn’t really do much for me.
Applejack‘s family crop during the Hearths Warming Eve season is being stolen and replaced with squashes, by the dreaded Sass Squatch monster, and AJ takes it upon herself to catch the wily Sass Squatch. The various traps that were set (and ruined) were fun to see, but this story just kind of was.
Overall, My Little Pony: Pony Tales was a fun look at each of the ponies on their own. Twilight Sparkle and Rarity’s issues were a highlight for me, and honestly, these are the perfect series to give to young readers who are just getting into comics.
Disclaimer: Both volumes were received via NetGalley, in exchanged for honest reviews. This has had no outcome on the review itself.