Some weeks, you don’t record a podcast when you’re ready. You record when you’re awake.

Rob had a long weekend of late nights being on call for his day gig, leading to a slim, two-hour window where he’d had enough coffee to be able to say something longer than his own name, yet not enough liquor to actively slur those things. And this strange state put him in a mood to rant. About the golden days of Marvel after the bankruptcy and before Civil War, when they were willing to take chances. About acceptable Mark Millar stories. About how Batman’s most driving personality trait might be hoarding. And, God help us, how there might be redeeming qualities to Secret Empire.

So strap in: this is a weird one, and we talk about all of those things, plus:

  • Old Man Logan #25, written by Ed Brisson with art by Mike Deodato, Jr.,
  • Secret Empire #4, written by Nick Spencer with art by Leinil Francis Yu,
  • Dark Days: The Forge #1, written by Scott Snyder and James Tynion IV, with art by Jim Lee, Andy Kubert and John Romita Jr., and:
  • The Defenders #1, written by Brian Michael Bendis with art by David Marquez!

Ah, we have disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. If you don’t want to know Captain America’s political affiliation on Secret Empire, well, you’re not alone, but you have also been warned.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. We talk about Batman being a Howard Hughes style hoarder. That involves Mason Jars. You want your mom to know what’s in those jars? Then get some earbuds.

Thanks for listening, suckers!

We are in a genre entertainment lull. A week after Wonder Woman debuted in theaters, three weeks before Spider-Man: Homecoming opens, and with all the geek TV shows on summer hiatus, there’s not a lot to talk about except the comic books.

So we stick with comics this week, and we are thankful that we don’t have to deal with a week of DC Comics trying to shoehorn classic comics from the 80s into modern continuity. Instead, we weep that we have to deal with DC Comics trying to shoehorn classic comics from the 80s into some weird Elseworlds continuity they probably hope they can sell to people who remember Frank Miller without thinking of Holy Terror.

So we discuss:

  • DK III: The Master Race #9, written by Frank Miller and Brian Azzarello, with art by Andy Kubert and Klaus Janson,
  • Wonder Woman Steve Trevor Special #1, written by Tim Seeley with art by Christian Duce,
  • Batman #24, written by Tom King with art by David Finch, and:
  • The Walking Dead #168, written by Robert Kirkman with art by Charlie Adlard!

And, the normal disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. If you don’t want to know who Steve Trevor is sleeping with, you are clearly not thinking things through. But don’t pretend we didn’t warn you.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. We don’t talk about Batman’s dance belt because of his waistline. Listen with some headphones.

Thanks for listening, suckers!

While Patty Jenkins’s Wonder Woman was certainly the big comics movie of the week, we start off talking about, of all things, M. Night Shyamalan’s five month old movie Split. We talk about it because, well, we weren’t expecting it to be a comic book style story, and were extremely surprised to find it so. Mostly we were surprised because we spend a lot more time paying attention to comic book news Web sites than we do movie Web sites.

But we do spend an extended period of time discussing Wonder Woman, a movie that only had to pass the bar of, “Please God, don’t be terrible” to satisfy us, and wound up being one hell of a lot better than that. We talk about Gal Godot’s performance, why the World War I setting worked out far better than its probable “Let’s not be too close to Captain America” origins, whether or not Ares really had a place in the movie, and Rebel Wilson. For some reason.

We also discuss:

  • Secret Empire #3, written by Nick Spencer with art by Andrea Sorrentino (No, we can’t seem to stop talking about Secret Empire), and:
  • Redneck #2, written by Donny Cates with art by Lisandro Estherren!

And, as usual, the disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. If you don’t want to know the big secret behind Split, then skip to about 20 minutes in, and for the love of God, don’t click that link about five paragraphs up. You know, the one you probably already clicked.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. We talk about Lex Luthor’s method acting in this episode. Sounds benign, doesn’t it? You, and your employer, would be very surprised. Listen with headphones.

Thanks for listening, suckers!

We wound up being dark this week, as it was a long holiday weekend here in the United States, which is distracting in and of itself. However, we were also distracted with the realization that one of our light switches, which was originally rated to light a two-bulb chandelier, was now running an eight-bulber and growing so hot after ten minutes that I’m surprised it didn’t shriek “Exterminate!” and give Jenna Coleman some self-actualization.

Changing out a light switch is a simple and menial task if you have any handyman skills whatsoever, which means it took me three hours, ten YouTube videos, obsessive wire counting and Amanda standing behind me with rubber-soled shoes and a wooden broom with which she could knock me away from the wires if I even hiccuped funny. Long story short: the chandelier works, but our taping window was shot.

We will be back next week with an episode about Wonder Woman, which is, according to the early reviews, shaping up to be an actually unreservedly good DC Films flick.

Look: we’re talking about Twin Peaks: The Return.

We know, this might not seem like the topic for a comics podcast, but hear us out. Twin Peaks is one of the main inspirations for The X-Files which is clearly turf for genre shows. It features a shared universe of different genre stories like any good comics universe. It has characters with super strength. But most importantly, Rob is a giant Twin Peaks fanboy, and he can’t pass up an opportunity to talk about the return of the first television program that showed him the promise of a shared genre universe the way that comic books did when he was 18 years old.

So we discuss what made the original Twin Peaks great, why there’s still excitement about it 27 years after it ended with little fanfare, and whether it was worth the wait to a person who owned every Twin Peaks property available between 1990 and 2016, or if it is even remotely compelling to someone like Amanda, who watched every episode of Twin Peaks that Rob rammed down her watchholes last week.

We also discuss:

  • The Flash #22, written by Joshua Williamson with art by Howard Porter, and:
  • Secret Empire #2, written by Nick Spencer with art by Andrea Sorrentino!

Ah, disclaimers:

  • This episode was recorded live to tape, meaning that there might be more than the usual number of pauses, verbal tics and weird inside jokes. But we figure if you’re willing to listen to a show about Twin Peaks, then pauses, verbal tics and inside jokes are maybe your jam.
  • This show contains spoilers. Laura Palmer’s killer was revealed on November 10, 1990. Rob found a way to find out who killed Laura Palmer despite not having hindsight, the Internet, or a working ABC television station in reasonable broadcast range on November 10, 1990. Rob has no pity for you when it comes to this subject.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. We talk about Secret Empire. That means there is cursing. You are forewarned.

Thanks for listening suckers!

Yes, I’m afraid we’re dark again this week. Between Mother’s Day on Sunday, work issues at both our day jobs Monday and another long and crippling 12-hour day today, we just didn’t have time to sit down and tape this week. But here’s some of the stuff we were gonna talk about this week:

  • In the interest of proving that we don’t have anything against Nick Spencer (no matter how painful Secret Empire has been to read), last week’s The Fix #9 was genuinely excellent, with the funniest aftermath of an attempted murder since The Three Stooges. Yes, all those things Moe did were felonies. The only behavior one corrects with a bowling ball to the head is a regular heartbeat.
  • In the interest of demonstrating that we don’t really have anything against Marvel Comics in general, Star Wars: The Screaming Citadel #1 was also well worth reading. Then again, it was a Keiron Gillen Star Wars comic starting Dr. Aphra, and showing her first meeting with Luke Skywalker. The only way you can screw that up is if you somehow shoehorn in the word “goatse.” And that “shoehorn” usage was totally intended.
  • Bryan Fuller’s adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s American Gods is spectacular. We’ll leave it at this, since we may come back to the topic in a future episode.

So yes: sorry for no show this week. Now if you’ll excuse us, we need to prepare for an upcoming comics trivia contest between representatives of a bunch of Boston’s best comic stores (which I’m sure we’ll be talking about in our next episode). Plus, the third season of Twin Peaks debuts on Sunday, which means Rob needs to go through about 27 more episodes of the first two seasons in a savage burn before then.

A wise man once said, “it was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” I think it was Harvey Dent. Or maybe Billy Dee Williams. Either way, it’s a statement that certainly applied to last week in comics and comics-related entertainment.

In column A was the United States debut of Marvel Studios’s Guardians of The Galaxy, Vol. 2. We managed to sneak in a matinee last weekend of a movie that we greatly anticipated as either a new installment of a light action science-fantasy property, or an excuse to spread Baby Groot out over two and a quarter hours, or perhaps both.

We talk about the movie, how it is satisfyingly character driven, almost completely disconnected from the master Marvel Cinematic Universe storyline, heavily influenced by some of the best genre sequels out there, and what music cues we might expect now that Star-Lord has access to more modern tunes (here’s a hint: Sonny Crockett and Patrick Bateman would totally approve!

And then there’s column B, which comprised a few of the biggest comics* released last week:

  • Batman #22, written by Joshua Williamson and Tom King with art by Jason Fabok,
  • Secret Empire #1, written by Nick Spencer with art by Steve McNiven, and
  • Secret Empire; Free Comic Book Day edition, written by Nick Spencer with art by Andrea Sorrentino!

(*In the interests of ending on a positive note, we give a quick shout-out to Project Superheroes: Hero Killers #1, written by Ryan Brown with art by Pete Woods)

You wanted the disclaimers, you got the disclaimers!

  • This show contains spoilers. If you don’t want to know how Captain America and Hydra consolidate their power, well, it really doesn’t matter, since we have no idea, either. But either way: consider this a master spoiler warning.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. We have jokes about The Flash being unable to find The Button, and those jokes are about exactly what you think they’re about. So wear headphones.

Thanks for listening, suckers!

As we ease into convention season, the comics news starts to slow down so publishers have something to discuss in panels. You know, other than garbage news items about the dangers of trying to be funny in 140 characters or less.

So we briefly discuss the next step in the million-mile march toward San Diego Comic-Con: hotel sales, which happened last Wednesday. We also talk about a superhero movie that we missed in 2016: X-Men: Apocalypse, which didn’t really interest us at the time – seeing Oscar Issac painted blue is only a gimme draw if you’re in his fraternity – but which really impressed us now that it’s on cable.

We also talk about some of this week’s books:

  • The Flash #21, written by Joshua Williamson with art by Howard Porter,
  • Action Comics #978, written by Dan Jurgens with art by Carlo Barberi,
  • Ben Reilly: The Scarlet Spider #1, written by Peter David with art by Mark Bagley, and:
  • Detective Comics #955, written by James Tynion IV with art by Marcio Takara!

What’s that? You want disclaimers?

  • This show contains spoilers. While we try to give warnings ahead of time, if you don’t want to find out why Angel is a terrible character in X-Men: Apocalypse, I don’t know why you’re listening, since you’ve clearly never read a comic book before.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. During this episode, Amanda says, “Touch the fishy.” Your boss won’t want to know why. So get some headphones.

Thanks for listening, suckers!

And lo, we return to you from lands afar, with the legendary tale of The Mighty Conquest of the Editing Robot with the Holy Union of the Irish and Columbia or: How We Killed Our Podcast Editing Computer with a Cup of Irish Coffee!

Seriously, we’re back after some serious technical difficulties, but ready to discuss the annual sale of passes to San Diego Comic-Con, and how we’ll be covering at least part of the event from on site. We’re excited to be returning for the first time since 2014… but we can still be irritated by having to suffer through the experience of the Blue Ring of Failure.

But it was a big week for comics, both good and bad, so we spend most of the episode discussing the high and lowlights, including:

  • Nick Fury #1, written by James Robinson with art by Aco,
  • Secret Empire #0, written by Nick Spencer with art by Daniel Acuna,
  • The Shaolin Cowboy: Who’ll Stop the Reign? #1, written and drawn by Geof Darrow, and:
  • Batman #21, written by Tom King with art by Jason Fabok!

And, as usual, the disclaimers:

  • We experienced a technical problem where a crackling sound becomes apparent during the last several minutes of the show. We ran it through a couple of filters to minimize it, but it’s obvious, and while the audio never becomes inaudible, it is irritating. We apologize, and we swear that our backup system to avoid this will totally work next time this happens, because we will totally remember to turn it on.
  • The show contains spoilers. If you don’t want to know what universe Batman comes close to this week, well, you must be a new listener! Nice to meet you!
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is not safe for work. If you don’t want your mom to hear about how Batman makes Reverse Flash see God, then get some headphones.

Thanks for listening, suckers!

Rob here. If you’ve listened to even a single episode of our show, you know that I enjoy the occasional fine adult beverage. Sometimes, however, said beverages make me infantile, in the sense that I deny that I should go to bed, even as I am nodding off while watching Guardians of The Galaxy at midnight. However, since I am not actually an infant, I have the ability to try to stave off bedtime by brewing up a pot of coffee. And since I enjoy adult beverages, I also have the ability to fortify said coffee with a heavy pour of Tennessee whiskey.

If you’ve ever enjoyed a fine adult beverage, you know that after enough of them, particularly when switching from beer to whiskey, they can have an adverse effect on your fine motor control. Sometimes this leads to dropping things. Things like coffee cups. And sometimes, those cups will spill in unfortunate ways. Ways like, I don’t know… directly into the power supply fan port of the computer you use to edit your podcast. You know, the machine that contains all the regular sound elements and the configured audio editor you need to actually complete an episode.

The machine died painlessly, but instantly, meaning I’ve had to replace it. This means ordering parts – friends don’t let friends buy computers at big box stores – and waiting for them to arrive. The main machine is here, but a couple of key components aren’t coming until this afternoon.

Even worse, it means reconstructing your data. Luckily, a certain amount was backed up to the cloud. Unluckily, all of that data was encrypted, meaning recovering the keys from an old cell phone. Which worked, and worked far more reliably than trying to get a seven-year-old internal hard drive (the drives, luckily, were on the other side of the machine, and mounted toward the top of the case) to connect to a shiny new machine via a USB connection. Oh, it can be done, but it requires command line tools and time. Like, six to eight hours per drive. Times three drives.

Long story short: as much data as possible is busily being recovered and copied to the new machine, and the remaining parts will be attached and running in the next couple of days. So there WILL be a new episode next week. Probably not about Ghost in the Shell, as that movie died to fast I think it’s on SyFy in the next few days, but barring unforeseen catastrophe, there WILL BE AN EPISODE.

So thanks to you listeners who reached out via email and Facebook to make sure we’re alive. We’re fine. I’m horribly embarrassed and several hundred bucks poorer, but fine nonetheless.