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!

fly_outbreak_1_cover_2015It has been, bar none, the crappiest week in comics news in recent memory – when the high point of the week’s news is that Larry Wilmore hosted a nationally televised round table discussion on how comics aren’t diverse enough (bookended by nerds-in-basement gags), it’s probably best to just pretend the whole thing just didn’t happen.

So that’s what we pretend. Instead, we took the occasion of the release of IDW’s The Fly: Outbreak #1, written by Brandon Seifert with art by Menton3, as an excuse to revisit one of our favorite movie franchises. Sure, The Fly might seem like simple Cronenberg body horror, but if you take a few steps back, what you really have is, starting with the original short story, a series of classic tales of science gone wrong, with unintended circumstances that imbue someone with extraordinary abilities in the face of terrible tragedy. Sure, it’s presented as horror… but if Jack Kirby or Steve Ditko had drawn it, we’d be arguing over which actor should be playing Seth Brundle right now.

We also discuss:

  • The Amazing Spider-Man #16.1, written by Gerry Conway with art by Carlo Barberi, and:
  • Batgirl #40, written by Cameron Stewart and Brenden Fletcher, with art by Babs Tarr!

And now the disclaimers:

  • We record this show live to tape. While this might mean a looser comics podcast than you’re used to, it also means that anything can happen. Like a discussion over why real superheroines know to avoid a stack overflow error (and why that isn’t a reference to a wardrobe malfunction).
  • This show contains spoilers. While we try to shout out warnings ahead of time, be aware that we might ruin the ending of a 29-year-old horror movie (that’s based on a 57-year-old short story).
  • This show used adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. You want your boss to know how many Godzilla wangs worth of snow we got this winter? Didn’t think so. Get some headphones.

Enjoy the show, suckers!

django_unchained_1_coverIn this week’s episode, Amanda and I discuss:

  • DC Entertainment’s / Warner Bros.’s rumored slate of movie released, from Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice in 2016 to a rumored new Batman movie in 2019, whether DC is overextending, which ones we’re most looking forward to, how Sandman could work as a movie, and who should play Shazam,
  • The recently announced Quentin Tarantino / Matt Wagner crossover of Django Unchained and Zorro, why we’re not as excited as we might have been 15 years ago, and what Django crossovers we’d rather see,
  • Sex Criminals #6, written by Matt Fraction with art by Chip Zdarsky,
  • Thunderbolts #27, written by Ben Acker and Ben Blacker, with art by Carlo Barberi, and:
  • How World Cup soccer is enough to put an American – even a baseball-loving American – right to sleep.

But some disclaimers:

  • This show is recorded live to tape, like a live radio show. While this might mean some dead air and dead ends, it also means that anything can happen.
  • This show contains spoilers. We try to drop a warning ahead of time, but tread lightly.
  • This show contains profanity and adult language, and is not safe for work. If it was translated into sign language, it would be only a middle finger. Wear headphones.

Enjoy the show, suckers!

tmp_nova_100_cover_2013529019612There are bigger and more ostensibly important comic books that have been released this week, but none of them had quite as much resonance with me when I saw the cover as Nova #100. Not because Nova is the biggest book in the world, but because it sure as hell isn’t the biggest book in the world.

My dad bought me Nova #12 when I was about five years old, mostly because Spider-Man was on the cover. And I really fell for the character, as I did DC’s Firestorm who debuted at about the same time, because even at five years old, I kind of understood that there were so many Spider-Man and Batman and Superman stories that I would never be able to never be able to read them all. But when you find a new hero that I found on the 11th issue? Well, that was someone who could belong to me.

However, I soon learned that the world of comics publishing didn’t revolve around the excitement of five and six year olds with 50-cent per week allowances willing to contribute a big $4.15 to the annual bottom line for a single comic book, because it was cancelled in 1978. And then it was cancelled again in 1995 after Eric Larsen brought it back, and again in 1999, and again in 2010 before returning in its current incarnation with a different dude under the helmet.

So it’s kinda cool that after 37 years, Nova has finally hit the hundred issue mark, showing simultaneously that sometimes the things you love when you’re five stick with you forever, and that the tastes of five year olds should never be used as a publishing strategy unless you want to wind up owned by a toy company, or worse, Disney.

But I’m not writing about Nova #100 just because of nostalgia, even though that is the reason it made its way to the top of my stack. It’s because in recent months, this book has become a fun and solid read, getting the mix of millennial spirit and fun, goofy dialogue that the Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon on Disney XD often whiffs in trying so hard to deliver. And this issue is no exception, with a couple of cool stories about a kid trying to figure out how to be a hero when he’s got classes in the morning and his family has money trouble out the yang. And it’s a lot of fun.