As we move slowly into convention season, there is kind of a dearth of interesting comics news to work through some weeks. Oh sure, we could weigh in on Marvel’s comments at ComicsPRO that the reason their sales are down is because of DC shipping cheaper books, but that’s a little inside baseball even for us. And besides: we all know that the people at Marvel will say absolutely anything if it means Issac Perlmutter turns his Sauron doom-eye back toward Kevin Feige.

So this week, we stick with talking this weeks’ comics, including:

  • Justice League of America #1, written by Steve Orlando with art by Ivan Reis,
  • Darkness Visible #1, written by Mike Carey and Arvind Ethan David with art by Brendan Cahill,
  • The Old Guard #1, written by Greg Rucka with art by Leandro Fernandez
  • Hulk #3, written by Mariko Tamaki with art by Nico Leon, and:
  • The Amazing Spider-Man #24, written by Dan Slott and Christos Gage with art by Giuseppe Camuncoli!

However, the disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. If you don’t want to know how many of this week’s comic books actually feature The Hulk (hint: it’s one fewer than you’d think!), then consider yourself forewarned.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. Let’s just say that Rob curses enough about The Clone Conspiracy this week to make the phrase “Ben Reilly” an obscenity by association. So consider using earbuds.

Thanks for listening, suckers!

The new Ghostbusters movie opened this week, after a long production period marked by a non-stop screeching hate frenzy from Bill Murray fans, enthusiasts of old-school J. Michael Straczynski Saturday morning cartoons, and people who think that comedy has been redundant since Rick Moranis donned a track suit to dry hump the windows at Tavern on The Green.

We here at Crisis On Infinite Midlives have long and storied histories with the original Ghostbusters, from Amanda’s devotion to its scientific approach to the paranormal that led to her being interested in applying to Duke University’s Parapsychology Laboratory, to Rob’s appreciation of the flick as an teen-safe entryway to early Saturday Night Live and the National Lampoon. And even with that long and beloved history, we have long been looking forward to the more modern interpretation of the franchise.

So we discuss our feelings about the franchise at large, how we liked (and didn’t like) the new movie, what we’re hoping for from any possible sequel, and Amanda’s theory about how this movie not only doesn’t turn its back on the original movie, but actually makes the concept that it’s a sequel as likely as not.

Regardless, we have no sympathy for those who say that the new Ghostbusters has destroyed their childhood. And we’re not alone.

We also discuss:

  • Nightwing: Rebirth #1, written by Tim Seeley with art by Yanick Paquette,
  • Wonder Woman #2, written by Greg Rucka with art by Nicola Scott, and:
  • Civil War II #3, written by Brian Michael Bendis with art by David Marquez!

And, the usual disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. If you want to avoid knowing whether every molecule in Melissa McCarthy’s body explodes at the speed of light in a total protonic reversal, consider yourself forewarned and forearmed.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. You want your boss to learn a whole new definition of “hard but fair”? Then buy some earbuds.

Thanks for listening, suckers!

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.

Thanks for listening, suckers!

all_new_captain_america_1_cover_variantThis week we added and installed a ton of new studio equipment for the show… and then used it to spend a few minutes laying in movie sound clips like middle-market Morning Zoo jocks.

Once we got that out of our system (and it is out of our system, we swear), we spent some time discussing the Doctor Who season finale, Death in Heaven. We talk about how the finale resembled a big comic book crossover event, whether the season theme of The Doctor-as-aristocrat really held water, the missed opportunity of Clara insisting that she was The Doctor, and why the English put so much stock in Christmas specials.

This week also brought us the solicitations for the first week of DC’s Convergence event on April 8th, so we go through each of the books and talk about what looks good, what looks great, and what it would take for us to even remotely care about some of the returning pre-New 52 characters (hi, Damian Wayne!).

On the comics front, we discuss:

  • Captain America and The Mighty Avengers, written by Al Ewing with art by Luke Ross,
  • Captain America #1, written by Rick Remender with pencils y Stuart Immonen, and
  • Superior Iron Man #1, written by Tom Taylor with art by Yildiray Cinar!

And now the warnings:

  • This show is recorded live to tape. While that might mean that this is a looser comics podcast than you are normally accustomed to, it also means that anything can happen.
  • This show contains spoilers. While we try to shout out warnings ahead of time, just assume that the spoilers you fear most will be uttered as the punchline to a dirty joke.
  • Speaking of dirty jokes, this show contains adult, profane language, and is not safe for work. Having just bought a crate of recording studio gear, I can state with some authority that headphones are cheap. Get some.

Enjoy the show, suckers!

Happy Wednesday! Despite being the first of February, it hit 60 degrees Fahrenheit, with sunny skies and a warm breeze. I can’t possibly be expected to work on a day like today. So, I made it to our local comic book store before my typical 5pm drunk set in – and you, fine readers, you reap all the benefits!

While we are dealing with unnaturally spring like weather here, Frank Castle is knee deep in The Dead Winter. As the police are beginning to tighten their own investigation of Frank’s connection to The Exchange murders, he and Rachel Cole-Alves begin a tentative, if brief, partnership as they search the remains of The Starbucks Staff Retreat The Exchange’s ski chalet for further information they can use to put more nails in the company’s shiny corporate coffin. Meanwhile, Managers-Of-Year, Stephanie Gerard and Christian Poulsen break into a S.H.I.E.L.D. safehouse – because they’ve had so many good ideas that have helped The Exchange out, already.

Greg Rucka continues to slowly unwind this tale, as he has over the past seven issues. Seven months in and Glee The Exchange is still breathing despite Frank’s efforts. So, should you continue to invest your time in this series?

Answers and spoilers after the jump.

Merry Christmas, Frankie Brown Castle! Or at least close enough in that kind of “horseshoes and hand grenades” sort of sense. You know all about hand grenades, don’t you Frank? Of course you do.

Issue #6 of The Punisher finds Frank Castle continuing to follow the trail of the shadowy, yuppie criminal outfit, The Exchange. The trail takes him to an exclusive ski hideaway inn somewhere in upstate New York – where Exchange management is having some sort of winter spa retreat to discuss the “emerging Punisher threat”. How evil! And, yet, relaxing! I wonder if the rooms come equipped with Jacuzzis? Because that would be awesome! I totally want to work for these guys.

Or, do I?

Spoilers which may or may not incorporate mayhem, sausages and ketamine after the jump!

In the most recent reboot run of The Punisher series, Greg Rucka has chosen to take the tactic of letting Frank Castle’s actions tell the bulk of the story. As he told Comic Book Resources:

We’ve had so many people over the years do an amazing job of getting inside Frank’s head, it seemed to me that nobody needed my take on it because it would just be me aping somebody else really. We know Frank. He’s very straight-forward about what he wants, why he wants it and what he’s willing to do to get it. We ran with him not talking for as long as I think we could get away with in terms of the story. It’s not that we were trying to render him mute as much as, he’s a guy who doesn’t have a lot to say. He’s not the type to talk to hear himself talk. Plus, he doesn’t really surround himself with people that he’s going to converse with.

The rest of the story is told from the point of view of the characters on whom Frank’s actions have had an impact: a police officer, Walter Bolt, who receives a promotion after being perceived as a hero during a shootout in which Frank Castle actually was the one who saved Bolt’s life, a bride, Rachel Alves, who is the only survivor of a massacre that took place on her wedding day, and Norah Winters, who is covering Castle in an attempt to be taken more seriously as a reporter. It’s an interesting choice for Rucka; Castle is so involved in his one man war on crime that he either doesn’t care or have time to acknowledge the impact his actions have on the few people he has around him. Punisher #5 continues in this vein as the characters approach Thanksgiving in the 616.

Spoilers and small children after the jump!