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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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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walking_dead_dead_insideAs we have been for the past several weeks, we remain immersed in the process of moving to a new Home Office. This means that we have spent our week collating documents mundane and obscure, and hunting for documents demanded by Unseen Powers that are so obscure that they apparently Cannot Be Named.

So we welcomed the distraction provided by a universe where, if a man wants a new house, he need but clear it of shambling ghouls and defend it from traitors and raiders. That universe being that of The Walking Dead, which debuted its sixth season last Sunday. So we discuss this magic world that is so blessedly empty of lawyers, mortgage underwriters and real estate brokers. A world that provides not only some of the most stunning visuals this series has ever presented, but which also raises questions about the very nature of morality and the rule of law, in a world where a society’s members, circumstances and requirements can change by the second.

We also discuss:

  • Chewbacca #1, written by Gerry Duggan with art by Phil Noto, and:
  • Uncanny Avengers #1, also written by Gerry Duggan with art by Ryan Stegman!

And, the inevitable 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 avocation of financial, and perhaps physical, sanctions for late comics.
  • This show contains spoilers. While we try to shout warnings ahead of time, be aware that we may ruin the surprise as to who this season of The Walking Dead’s Carl is (fun fact: it might not be Carl!).
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. We talk a lot about “horrible biological sounds” this week. Think your boss would use that in a positive way in your annual review? Yeah, get some headphones.
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walking_dead_dead_insideAfter a long week of hunting for possible new locations for the Crisis On Infinite Midlives Home Office, we were finally able to sit down and watch the premiere episode of the new AMC spinoff to The Walking Dead, Fear The Walking Dead.

We had reservations about the show going in, such as fears that this might be where we discover what caused The Walking Dead‘s walkers to start walking, or that a show about the beginning of a zombie apocalypse would be nothing but a new take on a story we’ve seen in Night of The Living Dead, Dawn of The Dead, and about two dozen different video games, or that a show about the beginning of the end would inevitably become a story about what happens after the end… and we already have that show.

Thankfully, none of those failure were evident. Unfortunately, many others, including inconsistent direction and writing, and a reliance on horror movie tropes of the kind you see on Netflix at 3 a.m. when you’re drunk and bored. And we talk about all of them… as well as the stuff that we liked, and gave us hope that there’s more to this show than the flaws in its pilot.

We also discuss:

  • Lando #3, written by Charles Soule with art by Alex Maleev, and:
  • Hank Johnson: Agent of Hydra, written by David Mandel with art by Michael Walsh!

And, as always, 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 the secret ingredient in Amanda’s hummus, and why it would offend Cthulhu.
  • This show contains spoilers. While we try to shout out warnings ahead of time, consider this your alert that Lando Calrissian was not eaten to death by a space vagina.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. Once your mom hears the Sarlacc described as a space vagina, she will never be able to unsee it. So get some headphones.

Editors’ Note: We are currently not planning to release a new episode on Sunday, September 6th (although if our schedule changes for the better, we may). Regardless, we will be back to our regularly scheduled programming on Sunday, September 13th.

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walking_dead_dead_insideIt’s been a packed week here at the Crisis On Infinite Midlives Home Office. We spent a lot of time watching, and rewatching, and re-rewatching the new trailer for Avengers: Age Of Ultron, and, like all good comic book enthusiasts, we spend a bunch of time dissecting what we saw, speculating on what we didn’t see, and ghostwriting what we’d like to see.

In addition, since we finally had our cable and Internet back online long enough for the Home Office TiVo to get the episodes of The Walking Dead that we missed, we binge-watched it and discussed what we liked, what we didn’t like, subtlety versus heavy-handedness, plot versus theme, and why it is more likely that AMC would kill Robert Kirkman this season than it is they would Daryl Dixon.

We also talk about:

  • All-New Hawkeye#1, written by Jeff Lemire with art by Ramon Perez, and:
  • Guardians Team Up #1, written by Brian Michael Bendis with art by Art Adams!

And now the disclaimers:

  • We record this show live to tape. While this might mean a looser comics podcast than you are used to, it also means that anything can happen. Like an argument over whether The Walking Dead is in dire need of a musical episode.
  • This show contains spoilers. While we try to shout out warnings ahead of time, be aware that we might ruin everything from the ending to last week’s The Walking Dead to the fact that Avengers: Age of Ultron is going to be rated PG-13.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. You want your Mom to hear what we think about “sweet biscuits”? Get some headphones.
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BatgirlNewCostumeThere has been another creative team change on Batgirl, by all reports due to editorial edict. So Amanda and I talk not only about the proposed new direction for the character, but we about the increasing influence over story and tone that editorial seems to have been gaining over creative teams as opposed to the early 2000s, when comics were doomed and writers and artists could seemingly do any damn thing they wanted if the sales numbers this month were higher than the ones from last month.

We are also just over a week away from San Diego Comic-Con 2014, so we talk about some of the scheduled panels, and how the wealth of content can make it infuriating, if not impossible, see everything you want at the show.

Finally, we discuss and review The Walking Dead #129, and Grayson #1!

And now the usual legalese:

  • We record this show live to tape. While that might mean some parts are a little rough around the edges compared to your regular comics podcast, it also means that anything can happen.
  • This show contains spoilers. We try to give a shout-out ahead of time, but we drink while recording. So tread lightly.
  • This podcast contains adult, explicit language, and is not safe for work. If you don’t want your boss hearing us talk about how superhero costumes contain compartments for each boob, wear headphones.
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walking_dead_dead_insideThis 4th of July weekend, we got sucked into the AMC marathon of The Walking Dead, and were surprised how binge-watching the whole thing from the beginning changed our opinion of the show. So we talked about that extensively, along with:

  • The NBC Constantine pilot leaked to the Internet this week. Amanda and I saw it, and have some fairly strong opinions as to what worked (Matt Ryan as John Constantine) and what didn’t (writing, pacing, too much exposition, not enough mystery, no local flavor, and some other stuff),
  • Original Sin #5, written by Jason Aaron with art by Mike Deodato, and:
  • Rocket Raccoon #1, written and drawn by Skottie Young!

And now, the legalese:

  • We record the show live to tape. That means a few stuttered words more than you’re used to in a comics / genre culture podcast, but it also means that anything can happen.
  • The show contains spoilers. Some weeks it’s a few, some it’s a lot. This is one of the latter. Be forewarned.
  • Amanda and I use explicit, adult language, so this podcast is not safe for work. Unless your boss likes phrases like, “Preemptive dribble of patriotism,” wear headphones.
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harrison_ford_signIn this week’s podcast, Amanda and I are joined by longtime Crisis On Infinite Midlives contributors Trebuchet and Pixiestyx! Trebuchet read comics as a kid and came back to them as an adult, and Pixiestyx didn’t read any comics until adulthood. Which make them the perfect guests with whom to discuss:

  • Star Wars: Episode VII! And more specifically, why we aren’t feeling all that excited about it,
  • Considering the comics industry is dying (almost literally) to bring in new and lapsed readers, what factors, books, and events brought Trebuchet and Pixiestyx to comics in the 21st Century,
  • Uber #14, written by Keiron Gillen with art by Gabriel Andrade,
  • The Walking Dead #128. written by Robert Kirkman with art by Charlie Adlard, and
  • The United States of Murder Inc. #2, written by Brian Michael Bendis with art by Michael Avon Oeming!

But first, a few disclaimers:

  • This show is recorded live to tape, and may contain more pauses, “um’s”, and references to tube steaks, lips and Kobe assholes than your average comic book podcast,
  • There are spoilers here. We try to warn ahead of time, but proceed at your own risk, and
  • This show features adult, profane language, and is not safe for work. We all found headphones with which to record the show, so you can damn well hunt some up to listen to it.
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godzilla_and_godzookyIt is Sunday, which means it’s time for another episode of the Crisis On Infinite Midlives Show, or as we like to call it: that thing we do as an excuse to not write for one day so we can devote more time to drinking whiskey, watching Game of Thrones, and babying the Crisis On Infinite Midlives Home Office Mascot, Parker The Kitten.

On today’s show, we tackle:

  • Godzilla! We went into it thinking it would be a movie filled with Walter White battling a giant lizard, walked out of it thinking it was a pretty enjoyable reboot of the property… and then we talked about it. And sometimes, that’s the worst thing you can do to a movie…
  • Wild-assed and variant covers – Marvel announced this week that the covers of each issue of The Death of Wolverine would be something called “Weapon Etched Holo Foil,” and DC is planning to release their Futures End (Mistakenly called Five Years Later in the show) September one-shots with another series of 3D covers. As a couple of people who lived through variant covers and how they helped kill comics in the mid-90s, we don’t have a lot to add about it, but man do we like to complain about them.
  • Batgirl #31, written by Gail Simone with art by Fernando Pasarin
  • The United States of Murder Inc., written by Brian Michael Bendis with art by Michael Avon Oeming
  • The Walking Dead #127, written by Robert Kirkman with art by Charlie Adlard, and:
  • Cat nutrition, or: taking care of a stray animal for only $47 a day

And one show note for the week:

  • The Island of The Mushroom People is an actual movie, actually called Attack of The Mushroom People in America and Matango in its native Japan. I wish I was making that up.

And, our usual semi-legalese:

  • This show was recorded live to tape, meaning that you might hear more than the normal number of “ums”, pregnant pauses, and references to Bukkake
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is not safe for work. That line just above about references to Bukkake? I didn’t pull that out of my ass. Be smart: listen with headphones.
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I missed this last Thursday, but the Conan show parodied The Walking Dead in a cold open to honor the cast of the show. They were guests for the night. There’s a lot to like about the clip. Conan’s zombie make-up is solid. Andy Richter is remarkably well put together, considering, well, zombie apocalypse. And, the Basic Cable Band seems particularly enthusiastic covering the theme to The Walking Dead. After all those year’s of playing Basic Cable Name That Tune, it must have been very exciting for them to play a song that had a licensed copyright. All in all, well done, Conan.

Now, I’m going to have to see if I have this recorded somewhere on the Tivo.

The Walking Dead returns to AMC tonight, February 9, 2014 at 9pm.

Via Kotaku.

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