As I mentioned before, I’ve been giving the DCnU books a lot of attention. Babies, even baby comics universes, have a way of being attention stealers. There’s other comic book news happening out there, though. Morgan Spurlock’s love letter to sweaty cosplayersSan Diego Comic Con documentary premiered yesterday. Also, a comic book store owner has come up with a new marketing strategy:

AlleyCat Comics in Chicago’s Andersonville neighborhood has an unorthodox approach to rewarding frequent customers: Shoppers that hit 50 purchases get to punch a store employee in the stomach.

Excuse me. I have to fly to Chicago. BRB

And, Newsarama has posted some Marvel previews. Here are some of the issues I think I’ll be picking up soon (click through for larger images):

DC released 13 new #1’s this week in its effort to reboot the DC universe. I’ve been trying to work through the stack. It’s been challenging; I love comics, but I also love having the opportunity to get up and do things like eat or huck rocks at the neighbor’s kids.

One of the books I’ve enjoyed the most so far has been Animal Man, written by Jeff Lemire (most well known for Sweet Tooth) with art by Travel Foreman and Dan Green. Lemire sets up Buddy Baker, aka Animal Man, as a mostly retired super hero who is now focusing his attention on animal rights activism education. He’s also just finished shooting an independent movie that sounds suspiciously similar to “The Wrestler”, but with more super heroes and less dignity. Despite Baker’s fame and success as Animal Man, there is tension at home. Money is tight; his wife is giving his mixed messages about whether he should continue being a super hero; and, his daughter really wants a puppy. I mean really wants a puppy. More on that later.

When Buddy finally does get to escape the house to go defeat a threat at a local hospital, using his powers come at an unexpected cost:

Do not eat the brown acid.

And then, he comes home and finds out the lengths his daughter will go to in order to have a pet. Plus, mutant powers!

What was most enjoyable about the story is the way Lemire’s storytelling worked in conjunction with Foreman’s penciling to give the whole issue a creepy, otherworldly vibe that was reminiscent of Grant Morrison’s work with the character without being completely batshit whack-a-loon. Furthermore, Foreman and Green’s artwork is a pleasant respite from the pretty to the point of sugar shock art in many of the other books that DC has released in the past two weeks (JL #1, I’m looking at you).

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a date with a plate of nachos and this bag of rocks.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This review contains spoilers. But if you were alive on September 11, 2001 and / or you know what the Truther Movement is, you already know how the fucking thing ends.

I’ve started this review about seven times with a variety of screeching hate frenzies about Rick Veitch, who is a creator I have always deeply respected. I have all his 1980’s Swamp Thing stuff. Brat Pack disturbed the hell out of me when I was 19 – in a good way. And Veitch’s live birth issue of Miracleman was one of two comics I went on eBay to get my hands on, after hunting fruitlessly through about a dozen comic stores, because I couldn’t wait any longer to read it.

And while, on the anniversary of September 11, it would be satisfying to blast The Big Lie – Veitch’s new book from Image Comics – for it’s weird politics and Truther point of view, this is a comics Web site – one of the only comics Web sites that is comfortable using the word “cumguzzler”, but a comics site nonetheless. Which means that I feel I need to review the book on its own merits.

Which is a dicey proposition; after all, this IS a comic that distinctly and pointedly implies that the Bush Administration ginned up the September 11th attacks in order to justify attacking Iraq. To review such a book ON September 11th merely on the merits of the story and the art could be uncomfortable on a good day and incendiary on a bad one… with September 11th itself most decidedly being a BAD ONE.

Thankfully, that won’t be an issue here, because this book sucks.












Paging the copy editor for the Bluewater Productions Web site: you have a typo on your September 2011 releases page. A hilariously awesome typo:

FAME: Justine Bieber 2

The sound you just heard was the hearts of little 10 year old girls around the world breaking, accompanied by the collective whooshing fist pump of little 17 year old lesbians who are now optimistic that Beebs might actually play for their team. Good work!

Don’t mean to brag but, we just got some art we purchased at a few conventions back from our local, friendly art framer. We bring stuff to him all the time – like the My Little Pony painting stuff that a 40 something year old by all rights should have put behind herself years ago. He doesn’t even think our stuff is that weird; yesterday, someone came in the store looking to get a lock, an honest-to-Christ authenticated fucking lock, of Abraham Lincoln’s hair framed in museum quality glass. I can only imagine this means the dude is done with his plans for cloning the man? Look out, Tea Party!

Anyway, check these out:

Top is a David Mack print set I picked up at San Diego in 2010. Bottom was from the Boston convention in 2009. Was a female artist who's name, unfortunately, the whiskey took.

This is a fantasy meet-up between old school Captain America and The Rocketeer by Jamie Snell from this year's SDCC. Support folks in Artists' Alley, people! They need to buy food so they can have the energy to fulfill filthy fanboy requests for pencil sketches of Zatanna on Wonder Woman.

This is an actual canvas painting of a Dalek by Josh Adams that I bought at this year's SDCC. It is menacing. but adorable.







































Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a lock of Warren Ellis’s beard on a used napkin in lucite to crate and store.

There’s a panel in Action Comics #1 where Superman is shot by a tank, and he utters, well… he utters this:

Which is not the worst thing I’ve seen in a comic book this week – that would be The Big Lie by Rick Veitch, which makes Hawk & Dove look like Great Expectations, and which I’ll probably rant about tomorrow – but apparently it made the owner of The Comics Conspiracy, a comic store in North Carolina, go apeshit ballistic based on their Facebook page:

As of today’s release of Action Comics #1 by Grant Morrison, The Comic Conspiracy, will until further notice, be boycotting all future Grant Morrison books. If you want Action Comics, you will have to buy it elsewhere…

Christian comic book readers and shop owners. Join us in the Grant Morrison Boycott. Action Comics #1 is a slap in the face to Superman, Christians and Superman creators Siegel and Shuster!!

…It grieves me to see a liberal Scottish schmuck like Grant Morrison take these liberties. I’m sorry, Superman would NEVER take God’s name in vain. In the words of the late Jim Croce, “You don’t tug on Superman’s cape.

The dude’s blowup got a lot of play in the comics press, including Bleeding Cool, Geeks of Doom, and about a million other sites including Reddit. And I’m guessing that DC Comics, who’re in the middle of the New 52 press juggernaut, didn’t want to alienate the huge Christian fundamentalist market segment, who are well known for their love for comic books and other genre fiction, because they trotted Action Comics writer Grant Morrison out onto the DC Source blog:

Last Sunday at Atlanta’s Dragon*Con, Jim Steranko showed off his four concept paintings of Indiana Jones for pre-production of Raiders of The Lost Ark.

Keep in mind that Steranko painted this, and these others, before a frame was shot and before Harrison Ford – or even Magnum P.I. – was cast, and you’ll finally realize that, between Steranko on Raiders and Ralph McQuarrie on Star Wars, the greatest contribution George Lucas personally made to either project was “Faster”, “More Intense” and “Hire N-Sync so my rat kids shut the fuck up.”

Spielberg and Lucas were so impressed by the initial work that the duo approached Steranko to do fifty more paintings, “one a day up until Christmas,” as it was November at the time at the time of their second meeting…

Spielberg offered an extension until the first of the year, which Steranko candidly declined.

Considering this was 1979 or so, and that the average comic artist can do a page or two of PENCILS a day, I’m guessing that Spielberg then offered Steranko a mountain of cocaine… and considering the Raiders story conference notes, Lucas probably offered him Marie Osmond. (via i09)

Newsarama’s got a preview of the first few pages of the finale to X-Men: Schism, the big second tier event Marvel’s running alongside Fear Itself… or maybe it’s the third tier event; in the Spider-Man books, Marvel’s running Spider Island, or: “Deadline? Um… Fuck It; EVERYONE’S Got Spider Powers! I’ll Be At The Bar Until My Check Clears!”

I’m gonna be honest with you: I don’t really follow the X-Men. That’s Amanda’s department. But I like Jason Aaron’s writing (If you’re not reading Scalped, you’re failing at comics), so I’ve been reading this one and generally enjoying it because you can’t go wrong with stories about evil children. Because ALL CHILDREN ARE EVIL; they steal your freedom and your beer and comics money for frivilous things like food and pants. That’s why I encase all my children in latex and flush them down the toilet before they can whimper at me. But I digress. Because I have been drinking. Anyway…

Image via Bleeding Cool. Also, I like pie.

Apparently, even with all the “we wants our wimmens” bruhaha at San Diego Comic Con, Bleeding Cool tells us:

This week, we’ve got thirteen new number ones, plus Justice League #1 from last week. I added it in because it seemed a little silly to give it its own post last week, so I saved it. On September 7, 2011, DC released 14 (really 13, plus 1 from the week before) brand new titles featuring 105 credited creators, 97 male and 8 female. So we’re nearly two percent less than the average amount. If you want to get into a whole percentage of percentage thing, this 7.6% is almost twenty percent below the average total of female creators.

So, holding all those “The New 52” panels hostage while constantly harping about how DC needs more women while you were at the microphone really seems to have worked out, huh, Kyrax2? Don’t you know you were supposed to do the decent thing and walk up to the microphone and say “Mr. Didio, you’re really awesome! How’d you get to be so awesome?”, while shallowly breathing through your mouth to avoid smelling the other sweaty, latex clad superfans gathered in the aisle waiting for their turn to fawn at the throne?

14 down, 38 to go. Maybe DC thinks hiding the Mysterious Woman Of Mystery in every single DCnU #1 is raising the total number of women in its books. Maybe we’ll find out she could be any one of a set of octuplets. Cosmic octuplets. Cosmic octuplets who follow Booster Gold through space and time, because he’s from the future and he knows that it’s important for the future of humanity to up the number of women involved in DC and –

Oh, fuck it. Just come back next year and try again. I have money riding on this.