clone_conspiracy_promo_poster_1This week, Marvel and Spider-Man writer Dan Slott announced that this fall’s Spider-Man event will be called The Clone Conspiracy, and will feature The Jackal and the clone of Gwen Stacy, possibly bringing a bunch of long dead Spider-Man characters back from the grave. We initially had a very negative reaction to this news, because any Spider-Man title that includes the word “clone” brings back memories of the 1990s Clone Saga… but then we realized that neither of us had actually read all that much of the original Gerry Conway clone stories from the 1970s, or the Clone Saga stories from the mid 90s.

So we ran out and purchased the trade of the original clone stories from 1975 through 1990, and one of the trades of the 90s Clone Saga, to see how we really felt about the clone stories in the face of the actual works. And we discussed, in the face of actual exposure to the clone stories, whether we wanted to see any more clone stories… and whether we did or not, if they could possibly overcome the reputation of the 90s Clone Saga.

We also discuss:

  • Civil War II #2, written by Brian Michael Bendis with art by David Marquez,
  • Superman #1, written by Peter Tomasi with art by Patrick Gleason, and:
  • Batman #1, written by Tom King with art by David FInch!

And, the usual disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. If you don’t want to learn the ending of who wound up with the mantle of Spider-Man at the end of The Clone Saga 21 years ago, you are a wise person with good taste in serialized graphic storytelling! But we’ll still ruin it for you.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. If you don’t think your mom wants to hear how there’s a big bit of Hal Jordan in Carol Danvers, then get some headphones.
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outcast_cinemax_posterThis week, The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman had an interview published in Rolling Stone where he chided George R. R. Martin for revealing the ending to A Song of Ice And Fire to the producers of HBO’s Game of Thrones. And it caused the predictable Internet uproar, but it also got us to thinking: we had six out of seven Fear The Walking Dead episodes unwatched on our TiVo. We’d been complaining for years that The Walking Dead comic’s pacing had been untenably slow. We’d been getting Kirkman’s Outcast in our pulls since it started, but we actually hadn’t been reading it, so we had no intention of checking out the comic’s new adaptation on Cinemax.

So we asked ourselves: have we reached peak Robert Kirkman? Has his work lost its mojo, at least for us? And we decided to test the question by burning through the remainder of Fear The Walking Dead season 2, re-reading the first issue of Outcast, and checking out the first two episodes of the adaptation. And having spent the weekend binging on Kirkman (eww!), the answer might surprise you!

We also discuss:

  • Wonder Woman: Rebirth #1, written by Greg Rucka with art by Matthew Clark, Liam Sharp and Sean Parsons,
  • The Flash: Rebirth #1, written by Joshua Williamson with art by Carmine Di Giandomencio, and:
  • Daredevil #8, written by Charles Soule with art by Goran Sudzuka!

And, the disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. If you listen, you will learn how many Fear The Walking Dead characters Rob wants to hit with a chair (Hint: It’s a non-zero value).
  • The show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. We talk about Superman’s dickie. Get some headphones.
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dc_rebirth_charactersIt’s the first full week of DC Comics: Rebirth, and not a single Watchmen character appears in those issues, so we decided it would be a good opportunity to complain again about Watchmen characters appearing in the DC Universe.

Specifically, it was revealed this week that DC Comics didn’t contact Watchmen artist Dave Gibbons to ask him his opinion about adding Watchmen characters to Dc Universe: Rebirth. So we talk about whether that was a bush league move (protip: yeah), some of the history around DC leaving Watchmen alone, and whether DC Editorial really had any choice in asking for Gibbons or writer Alan Moore for even a half-hearted blessing in using their characters in Rebirth.

Then, since we were on a Rebirth roll, we discussed all this week’s titles from that event:

  • Superman: Rebirth #1, written by Peter Tomasi with art by Doug Mahnke,
  • Green Arrow: Rebirth #1, written by Benjamin Percy with art by Otto Schmidt,
  • Green Lanterns: Rebirth #1, written by Geoff Johns and Sam Humphries with art by Ethan Van Sciver and Ed Benes, and:
  • Batman: Rebirth #1, written by Scott Snyder and Tom King with art by Miken Janin.

And, just so Marvel doesn’t feel neglected, we close the show by talking about:

  • Civil War II #1, written by Brian Michael Bendis with art by David Marquez!

And, as always, the disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. If you want to avoid knowing how the DC: Rebirth books end (spoiler alert: no matter what happens, it probably won’t matter next month), then consider yourself warned.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. You want your mom to know what “giddy bottom” means? Get some ear buds.
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amc_preacher_jesse_posterIt’s the end of the week of May 25th, 2016: the Wednesday the Big Two drooled on themselves, shrieked “Excelsior!” into the Black Void, and keeled over. At least if you believe the Internet comments.

But before we talk about that, there was one major positive for comics fans this week: AMC debuted the pilot episode of their adaptation of Garth Ennis’s and Steve Dillon’s Preacher this past Sunday. We’re big fans of the comic, which really meant something to us… back when we were in our twenties, same as the characters back in the original 1990s comic. Both we and the comic are older now, with different lifestyles and priorities, so the question is not only whether or not Preacher is a worthy adaptation of the classic Vertigo comic, but can it have the same effect as it did when we were in our twenties?

That’s the good news. The bad news is that we also discuss:

  • Steve Rogers: Captain America #1, written by Nick Spencer with art by Jesus Saiz, and:
  • DC Universe: Rebirth #1, written by Geoff Johns with art by, well, many, many people!

And, as always, the disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. So be aware: if you haven’t been spoiled on the events of either Steve Rogers: Captain America #1 or DC Universe: Rebirth #1, then you clearly haven’t had any access to the Internet and therefore can’t read this warning anyway. But rest assured: we’ll be spoiling them.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. We recite Preacher’s recipe for making a homemade bazooka in this episode. You don’t want your boss to hear that any more than we want this episode entered into evidence in a Felony Menacing trial. So get some headphones.
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dc_rebirth_coverHere’s a warning about this week’s episode right out of the gate: details about DC Universe: Rebirth #1 have leaked to Reddit, including images from that issue. The user who leaked the pages has since deleted his or her account, but those images have been picked up and published by Bleeding Cool (Seriously: there are massive spoilers at that link, so beware), and have led to major spoilers about the book being published across the comics Internet. And those images and spoilers contain a revelation that is not only startling, but infuriating, if not downright rage-inciting, for fans of a particular classic comics property. Like, we sat down to plan this week’s show, found this news item, and chucked everything so we could fume about this move. It stands to possibly be bad, bad mojo for fans of DC who date back to the 1980s.

And we talk about that revelation. So if you want to avoid spoilers for DC Universe: Rebirth #1, you should avoid listening to this week’s episode until you pick up this week’s comics on Wednesday, May 25th. But if you’re not concerned about spoilers, and you care about the legacy of one of the great superhero comics works of the last thirty years, jump on in! We’ll never compromise! Not even in the face of Armageddon!

We also discuss:

  • Future Quest #1, written by Jeff Parker with art by Evan “Doc” Shaner and Steve Rude,
  • Chilling Adventures of Sabrina #5, written by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa with art by Robert Hack, and:
  • Civil War II #0, written by Brian Michael Bendis with art by Olivier Coipel!

And, the usual disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. Like, terrible spoilers for DC Universe: Rebirth #1. So if you don’t want to have the terrible spoiler revealed, it’s up to you. I leave it entirely within your hands.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. If your version of The American Dream is to get fired for listening to bad language at work, it’ll come true. You’re looking at it.
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vision_7_cover_2016It has been a stone bummer of a week when it comes to comic news. From the tragic loss of Darwyn Cooke to DC Comics having to release a statement on sexual harassment in the face of protests over allegations about Superman Group Editor Eddie Berganza, there haven’t been a lot of smiles in comics this week. Hell, when the most welcome news is that Supergirl was renewed and only has to reduce their budget and expatriate to Canada, you’re not talking a barrel of laughs.

But these things all happened, so we talk about them. Particularly the DC Comics harassment issue, as one of us was once harassed in the manner and circumstances in which Berganza is accused of harassing someone back in 2012, and therefore we wanted to share our perspective on it.

But we hate dwelling on negatives in our favorite hobby, so we spend more time than usual talking about actual comics this week, discussing:

  • Southern Bastards #14, written by Jason Aaron with art by Jason Latour,
  • The Vision #7, written by Tom King with art by Michael Walsh,
  • Starfire #12, written by Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti with art by Elsa Charretier, and
  • Powers #6, written by Brian Michael Bendis with art by Michael Avon Oeming!

And, the disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. We will ruin the ending of the latest Powers story line for you… but then again, since it’s been seven months since the last issue, you probably don’t remember how the story line started.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and therefore is not safe for work. Sure, the concept of a “kitten chaser” sounds benign, but do you want to risk your employment on it? Didn’t think so. Buy earphones.
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captain_america_civil_war_teaserIt feels like only yesterday that we were discussing why a movie about superheroes fighting each other was a painful, depressing and contrived experience, doesn’t it? Well, good news! We can put Batman V. Superman: Dawn of Justice out of our minds, because we’ve got another movie about superheroes trying to kick each other in the junk!

Captain America: Civil War opened in the United States last week, so in the interest of equal time with Batman V. Superman, we have brought back the same guests we discussed that movie with: comedians Ross Garmil and Benari Poulten!

In a much different discussion than we had about Civil War’s DC counterpart, we all talk about what worked with the movie, the few parts that didn’t, how 20 minutes of Spider-Man in this flick feels more true to the character that his preceding ten hours of film appearances, how the last person we saw as quickly and thoroughly defeated as one of Civil War’s heroes was Shelley Levine from Glengarry Glen Ross, and how Civil War is, figuratively and (somewhat) literally, Marvel’s The Empire Strikes Back.

And, as always, the disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. Like, we will ruin the entirety of Civil War for you. We’ll tell you who gets killed. We’ll tell you who gets crippled. We’ll tell you who teaches The Vision how to love with a floppy copy of Conficker and a tube of Astroglide. We’ll tell you which of the three preceding plot points is false.
  • The show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. Picture your mom hearing four adults cackling about the Astroglide thing. Yeah, buy some ear buds.
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flash_arrow_crossoverAfter a busy week of vacationing, video gaming, and day job hunting, we are back, just in time to deal with the latest comics vs. filmed adaptation battle!

If you are a fan of The CW’s The Flash, you know that the current storyline involves Zoom from Earth-2, and his relationship to Golden Age Flash Jay Garrick. There was quite a twist around that relationship in the show, and it’s one that infuriated long-time Flash comic book writer Mark Waid, who complained that it was a betrayal of Garrick’s comic book past.

And while this is unique given that it comes from a comic creator, it reminded us about years and years of comic fan outrage over differences between the comics we love and the adaptations that they beget… and yet it also reminded us that some movies and TV shows based on our favorite characters have made much bigger changes than have happened on The Flash, and yet no one seemed to mind.

So in between fan outrage over Batman V. Superman: Dawn of Justice and fan excitement over Captain America: Civil War, we talk about what makes we fans excited about some adaptations and nitpick over others, and why we’re okay when Superman kills Zod in Superman II but not in Man of Steel.

We also discuss:

  • Batman #51, written by Scott Snyder with art by Greg Capullo, and:
  • 4 Kids Walk Into A Bank #1 written by Matthew Rosenberg with art by Tyler Boss!

And, as usual, the disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. If you don’t want to find out about plot points in The Flash, or who has the title of The One True Ringworm, tread lightly.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. You want your mom to know who or what “The DIck Flash” is? Then get some headphones.
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walking_dead_153_coverWe have been fans of The Walking Dead since the seventh issue of the comic book. That means that we have hung in with Rick Grimes and company, and their doomed world, for literally almost twelve years. We’ve stuck with them through prisons, and horrors performed in Woodbury, and the semi-friendly takeover of Alexandria, and All-Out War, and The Whisperers. For more than a quarter of our lives. Which meant we were surprised last week, after the conclusion of season six of The Walking Dead series, the opening of Fear The Walking Dead season two, and the release of the comic’s 153rd issue, when Rob said he might not have the wherewithal to watch these people take a beating anymore.

So this week, we examine the state of The Walking Dead. From the TV show’s introduction of Negan and the extended beating that probably means for Rick and company, to Fear The Walking Dead and how its prequel nature means that we will be spending 18 episodes with people we know are doomed to wind up in the world of The Walking Dead no matter what they try, to the comic and its reintroduction not only of Negan, but his “costume” and weapon. And we discuss whether the story, in all its incarnations, has finally become so bleak, depressing and hopeless to want to follow. And we talk about whether the comic book has been transformed from a story into a property, making it impossible to ever end in a satisfying manner.

We also discuss:

  • Moon Knight #1, written by Jeff Lemire with art by Greg Smallwood and Jordie Bellaire, and:
  • Jackpot! #1, written by Ray Fawkes with art by Marco Failla!

And, the disclaimers:

  • This show contains huge spoilers for the end of The Walking Dead season six, the opening of Fear The Walking Dead season 2, and big ol’ chunks of the Walking Dead comic. While we try to shout out warnings ahead of time, be aware the we will ruin the fact that the world of The Walking Dead is a stone cold bummer.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. You want your boss to learn about “The Thighs of Death”? Then get some Headphones of Continued Employment.
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fix_1_coverConvention season has been underway for a few weeks now, but what with Image Expo happening this past Wednesday in Seattle, followed almost immediately by Emerald City Comicon happening only days later in the same city, this is one of the bigger weeks for comics news we’ve had in quite a while.

So while we tried to distract ourselves from our disappointment that we were unable to finagle a trip across the country to see these conventions in person with a viewing of The Death of Superman Lives: What Happened?, we still found ourselves following the comics news about the announcements coming from each event.

And there was a ton of announcements, from new crime comics from the creators of 100 Bullets, to a bunch of maps and financial documents surrounded by a comic book by Jonathan Hickman, to a story about the Six Million Dollar Man written by a man with experience writing about someone who wants to become a real boy.

We also discuss:

  • Black Panther #1, written by Ta-Nehisi Coates, with art by Brian Stelfreeze, and:
  • The Fix #1, written by Nick Spencer, with art by Steve Lieber!

And, the normal disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. If you don’t want to hear why The Black Monday Murders by Jonathan Hickman will be the comic most likely to give you maps and sadness, tread lightly.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. You want your boss to hear about why it’s awesome to consume Incompetence Porn? Then get some headphones.
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