doctor_who_christmas_special_2015While we originally planned to list our 2015 Crises awards for the best and worst of the year this week, we were stymied by a combination of holiday travel for Rob, and a crippling cold (and cold medicine high) by Amanda.

So after spending some time talking about what we got for Christmas, and best Christmas memories from childhood (spoiler: none of Amanda’s childhood memories are anything but heartbreaking and hilarious), we talk about the Doctor Who Christmas special, The Husbands of River Song. We talk about the episode’s weird mix of farce and heartstring plucking, how it might mean some solid writing on showrunner Steven Moffat’s part to tie River’s character closely to her first appearance, and how it paints the Doctor as a remorseless and opportunistic genocidal monster. Really.

We also discuss:

  • DK III #2, written by Frank Miller and Brian Azzarello, with pencils by Andy Kubert and inks by Klaus Janson,
  • Teen Titans #15, written by Scott Lobdell and Will Pfeifer with art by Ian Churchill and Miguel Mendonca, and:
  • Darth Vader #14, written by Kieron Gillen with art by Salvador Larroca!

And, the usual disclaimers:

  • We record this show live to tape, with minimal editing. While this might mean a looser comics podcast than you are used to, it also means that anything can happen. Like the tragic tale of a girl, pseudoephedrine and a busted Etch-A-Sketch.
  • This show contains spoilers. While we try to shout out warnings ahead of time, just assume that we will explain, in detail, why The Doctor is history’s greatest monster.
  • This show contains adult, profane language and is therefore not safe for work. You want your employer to know what it means when things go “testacularly”? Then get some headphones.

Thanks for listening, suckers!


captain_america_civil_war_teaserWhile we are still in the throes of The Neverending Move, and therefore somewhat distractible (Hi, Fallout 4! Let me spend hours up in you, trying to find our new Home Office!), it would take more than a month living out of boxes to keep us from noticing the first trailer for Captain America: Civil War, or as we like to call it, Avengers 2.5.

We spent a good chunk of time watching, and rewatching, and rewatching the trailer, and spend some time discussing how it not only already looks better than the comic from which it came, by dint of the fact that Tony Stark isn’t suddenly acting like an amoral fascist just to advance a plot (Hi, Mark  Millar!), but how it seems like a weird time to mess up the MCU superhero status quo given that their next Earth-level superhero flick is more than a year after Civil War. We also speculate which side everyone will land on, and discuss why, if the Russo Brothers don’t use Mike Colter’s Luke Cage the way Brian Michael Bendis used Cage in Civil War, they are Goddamned fools.

We also discuss:

  • DK III #1, written by Frank Miller and Brian Azzarello, with pencils by Andy Kubert and inks by Klaus Janson,
  • Jacked #1, written by Eric Kripke with art by John Higgins, and:
  • Who would win in a drinking contest: Demon In A Bottle Tony Stark, or Alias‘s Jessica Jones (Yes, this was a weird show)!

And now, the disclaimers:

  • We record this show live to tape, with minimal editing. While this might mean a looser comics podcast than you are used to, it also means that anything can happen. Like learning why Starfox could outdrink Rocket Raccoon (It’s not why you think! It’s filthy!)
  • This show contains spoilers. While we try to shout out warnings ahead of time, just be aware you will learn the secret origin of Phil Coulson’s Vanity Vehicle.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. Seriously: the whole Starfox / Rocket Raccoon thing is just awful. Get some headphones.

Thanks for listening, suckers!


c2e2_logoWe are in Chicago, attending and reporting from C2E2 after years of having San Diego Comic-Con be our main convention. The first day is concluded, and it is a very different experience from SDCC… starting with the fact that I’ve never eaten anything in San Diego that made me spend several hours shivering and vomiting on a marble bathroom floor.

As such, we don’t have as much day one news as we’d like, but we spend some time discussing how Friday at C2E2 is a day where you can actually walk the floor without having to stutter walk around people like you’re trying to avoid calling a sandworm. You can actually meet and interact with creators without having to elbow crowds out of the way (with some exceptions – hi, Scott Snyder and the 500 people waiting to meet you!), and still get some big comic news.

This is just a quick recap show covering the first day; we’ll have a second quick show to briefly cover Saturday going up on Sunday night, with a complete recap show, including panel audio, coming on Monday or Tuesday.


Thanks for listening, suckers!


tmp_sin_city_a_dame_to_kill_for_teaser_poster_1_2013-1733579567It is the middle of Labor Day weekend, which means that things are slow in the world of comics news, and fast in the world of drinking whiskey to forget you still have a job to go to on Tuesday.

So Amanda and I use this lull to idly speculate who might be a good casting choice for Doctor Strange in the upcoming Phase 3 Marvel movie. And not only that, but we got ourselves out to see the currently-in-theaters Sin City: A Dame To Kill For adaptation of Frank Miller’s hard boiled crime comics… and we had remarkably different reactions to the flick. Specifically regarding Eva Green’s casting as Ava Lord, Eva Green’s ability to portray Ava Lord, and Eva Green’s qualifications as an actress beyond the ability of some of her bodily appendages to defy constant gravitational forces. We also talk about the other parts of the movie.

We also discuss:

  • All-Star Western #34, written by Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray, with art by Darwyn Cooke, and
  • Silver Surfer #5, written by Dan Slott with pencils by Mike Allred!

And now the disclaimers:

  • We record this show live to tape. While this might mean a somewhat looser comics podcast than you are used to, it also means anything can happen. Like discussions about new supervillain Whistle Pig.
  • This show contains spoilers. While we try to shout out warnings before spilling secrets, be on notice that spoilers can happen at any time.
  • Amanda and I use explicit, adult language, and therefore this show is not safe for work. Before listening without headphones, please see the earlier note about the discussion vis a vis Eva Green’s bodily appendages. Get some headphones.

Enjoy the show, suckers!


frank_miller_headshotFrank Miller was behind a computer keyboard yesterday. Someone made a terrible, terrible mistake.

Here’s what I’m talking about: the last time Frank sat down specifically to publish something he thought on the Internet, it was to post a diatribe about the Occupy Wall Street kids who were, at the time, camping out in public parks around the United States. Frank spent a few hundred words and a couple of amateurish “bowel movement” jokes comparing these neo-rich-kid-hippies with Al-Queda, which not only sounded like unnecessary histrionics, but really kinda ridiculous. After all, most world-class terrorist organizations ask their collaborators to have a useful skill. You know, beyond drum circles. But I digress.

Anyway, Frank’s public presence since 2011 has been comprised of that blog post and his original graphic novel Holy Terror, which was a Batman story that DC Comics refused to publish. You know, the same DC Comics that published Kevin Smith’s The Widening Gyre, where Smith retconned Batman to have pissed his pants during his first confrontation with the mob in Batman: Year One, written by… some guy who I can’t remember. I remember he was a good writer at the time, though.

So this is the first time in almost three years Frank has put himself out for Internet scrutiny, and I have to give him credit for doing it in a Reddit Ask Me Anything, where Miller has to boldly face questions like:

[–]metsbnl 133 points

What do you think of DC’s decision to reject publishing Holy Terror?

[–]Izawwlgood 348 points

And as a follow up; what in the fuck were you thinking?


[–]ThrillhausVanHouten 148 points

How do you respond to critics who say your work is sexist and shows you only posses the crudest possible understanding of women?

[–]Psyladine 136 points

What are you talking about? His female characters have great variety, they run the gamut from Madonna to Whore.

and then had the courage to, well, ignore those question in favor of ones asking what superheroes he might still like to write.


affleck_as_batman_lightenedSo recently, Batman Vs. Superman director Zack Snyder tweeted a photo of Ben Affleck in the Batman suit for the upcoming movie. And while some of us who are actual comics fans might have seen some similarities in the suit to some other earlier comics works, there were just as many people who said, “Meh; it’s just another one-color Batman suit, just like in the Christopher Nolan flicks. And the Tim Burton movies. And the ones by what’s-his-face, that nipple-obsessed pederast.”

And certainly, that single photo that most of us have seen points toward that kind of design… but most of us have only seen the one photo posted to the public Internets by Snyder, who is known to like fucking around with visuals, whether or not it’s actually a good idea.

But there is one man not involved with the actual production who has seen a photo of the costume: Kevin Smith, the director of Clerks, host of podcast Fatman on Batman, and the guy who cast Affleck in Chasing Amy, which led Hollywood producers to see him as something other than his character in Dazed And Confused, i.e.: a paddle-obsessed pederast (I’m detecting a common theme here).

Smith has been saying for months that he’s seen the Batman suit, and based on his descriptions, we weren’t expecting another one-color Batman costume. Well, Smith has made a few more comments about the costume he saw on his Hollywood Babble-On podcast (transcribed by, and in doing so, confirmed some things that many long-time comic fans already suspected from the first black and white photo.


tmp_sin_city_a_dame_to_kill_for_teaser_poster_1_2013-1733579567Making a movie adaptation of a comic book is tricky business, because there’s always the question as to how slavish a remake you should go with. You go too far off the reservation, you wind up with a Muppet threatening to “chuck the duck” to Marty McFly’s mom, and you set back the cause of comics-based movies about a half a decade. You hew too close to the source material, and you might find yourself publicly arguing that you saved the original comics property from being ruined in adaptation… not six months after defending yourself from charges that you ruined another original comics property in adaptation.

But the one thing most people agree on is that there needs to be at least some modifications to bring a comic book to the screen. Most people, that is, except for Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller, whose Sin City movie in 2005 mirrored the original The Hard GoodbyeThe Big Fat Kill and That Yellow Bastard series so closely that I was able to literally sit down in front of a bootleg DVD of the flick and follow along with the trade paperbacks, like I was listening to the world’s most expensive Power Record.

And yet somehow, it worked for that movie, which I liked enough to have owned in bootleg DVD, original release DVD, special edition DVD and Blu-Ray formats. And we are coming up fast on the release of the sequel, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, which not only looks to follow the same the-comic-is-the-storyboard format of the original flick, but features the return of Bruce Willis as Hartigan, Jessica Alba as Nancy, and Mickey Rourke as Violent Marv. And it also has Lady Gaga for some reason!

The movie drops on August 22nd, and with only five months to go, it means the first trailer should drop any time. By which I mean it has just come out. And you can check it out after the jump.


robocop_vs_terminator_galleryWe’ve talked a lot about Robocop in the past week or so thanks to the rebooted movie version and the associated kinda crappy comics. However, Robocop has long been a subject here; literally in our first week of publication, I wrote a short review of Dynamite Comics’s Terminator / Robocop: Kill Human #2, where I bemoaned writer Rob Williams’s decision to have Robocop scream, “You motherfuckers!” (Shut your mouth! I’m just talking ’bout Robocop…), and pined for the 1992 Dark Horse Comics miniseries Robocop Vs. Terminator, which was written by Frank Miller, drawn by Walt Simonson, and never, ever reprinted.

Well, it seems that all this current excitement about the Robocop reboot (likely to be followed by disappointment, ambivalence, and eventually denial) has lit a fire under Dark Horse, because they have announced that they are finally reprinting the series. And not just in a quickie cash-grab trade paperback version (although as I recall, the story was good enough that even that would be worth your time and money), but in a recolored hardcover edition.

And if that isn’t enough to make you want to shout, “Shut up and take my money!” (which is still closer to authentic Robocop dialogue than Williams wrote in Terminator / Robocop: Kill Human, but that’s not the point), Dark Horse will also be releasing a “gallery edition” of the book, featuring Simonson’s original, uncolored line art.


frank_miller_headshotWe are battening down for our first winter storm here at the Crisis On Infinite Midlives Home Office. These preparations are not really rigorous – as a wiser man than me once said, all a man needs to weather a blizzard is beer and toilet paper – but we need to get to it while the getting’s good.

So in the meantime, let’s all reflect on a place where it never snows (although it always rains when you need to take a long walk to ponder the priest you just shot), which is a good thing because the cars are all convertibles and the babes are all wearing exactly enough to avoid arrest… although it doesn’t really matter because the cops are all dirty anyway.

I’m talking about Basin City, or Sin City to the locals. And Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez are taking us back there in the sequel to 2005’s Sin City, Sin City: A Dame To Kill For, which is due out on August 22, 2014. And Dimension Films has released a new teaser poster for the flick, which you can check out after the jump.


robocop_last_stand_1_cover_2013-1753134493Robocop is awesome. Sure, there are a lot of questionable moments in the franchise, like parts of Robocop 2… and all of Robocop 3… plus the entirety of the Robocop animated series… not to mention every instant of the live-action Robocop TV series that was created to keep Orion Pictures from being sold for corporate parts in the mid 90s… but that original Paul Verhoeven flick? I can watch that all day.

Frank Miller, too, is awesome… or at least he was once. Sure, there have been a lot of questionable moments, like Holy Terror… and his film adaptation of Will Eisner’s The Spirit… and whenever he goes anywhere near a device that has an Ethernet port… but all those stories like The Dark Knight Returns, and Give Me Liberty, and Batman: Year One? Miller in the late 80s, early 90s, I can read all day.

Now, Miller famously wrote the original screenplays for Robocop 2 and Robocop 3 in the late 80s, before various studio executives and directors ripped the things apart to turn them into the respective okay and awful movies they became. And for a long time through the 90s, those screenplays were kind of legends in the comics world: Miller, working when he was at the top of his game, on a genre franchise that exploded into a classic right out of the gate.

Almost ten years ago, Avatar Press released an adaptation of Miller’s Robocop 2 screenplay, with a comic script by Two Guns writer Steven Grant, that was pretty solid as I recall, and was a hell of a lot darker than the actual movie. But that still left Miller’s Robocop 3 screenplay floating around out there. And in the meantime, Dynamite Comics got their hands on the Robocop license and put out some books that, frankly, made Robocop 2 look like Godfather 2.

However, the license has now moved to Boom Studios, who has put the band back together with Robocop: Last Stand, an adaptation of Miller’s Robocop 3 screenplay again adapted to comics by Steven Grant. So we’ve got an 80s Robocop story based on an 80s story by Frank Miller. On paper, it’s everything I ever wanted when I was 20 years old… but the question is: is it a classic like I always hoped? Or is it another wretchedly disappointing Robocop comic like every one I’ve read since we started this Web site?

The answer is… neither, really. But it is pretty damn good