hadrians_wall_1_coverAfter yet another cripplingly busy week at the Crisis On Infinite Midlives Home Office (and, to be honest, after about a quart of single malt scotch and a few belts of mescal), we only had the time to discuss a few of the comics of the week. But that turns out to have been a good decision; since we didn’t have time to fully discuss and coordinate our choices, we wound up with a couple of polarizing choices upon which we didn’t really agree.

This led to a conversation that ranged from deciding where on the Kubler-Ross scale of grief we are with regards to Watchmen characters still appearing in DC: Rebirth books (Rob is at “Bargaining”, Amanda is “amused at Rob’s Bargaining”), how James Tynion IV made Rob care about Spoiler for the first time, whether there’s enough nostalgia in the world to make innovative visual storytelling enough to bring Steve Austin into the 21st Century, and how Amanda’s battle against scotch last night went (picture Amanda as Rocky and scotch as Apollo Creed).

So what comics do we talk about?

  • Detective Comics #940, written by James Tynion IV with art by Eddy Barrows,
  • Lady Killer Volume 2 #2, written and drawn by Joelle Jones,
  • The Six Million Dollar Man: Fall of Man #3, written by Van Jensen with art by Ron Salas, and:
  • Hadrian’s Wall #1, written by Kyle Higgins and Alec Siegel, with art by Rod Reis!

And, as usual, the disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. If you don’t want to find out who dies in this week’s Detective Comics (hint: it’s not Batman), then consider yourself forewarned.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. See that title? It’s because we talk about Lee Majors and a plaster cast. You want your boss asking about that? Then get some earphones.

Thanks for listening, suckers!

fix_1_coverConvention season has been underway for a few weeks now, but what with Image Expo happening this past Wednesday in Seattle, followed almost immediately by Emerald City Comicon happening only days later in the same city, this is one of the bigger weeks for comics news we’ve had in quite a while.

So while we tried to distract ourselves from our disappointment that we were unable to finagle a trip across the country to see these conventions in person with a viewing of The Death of Superman Lives: What Happened?, we still found ourselves following the comics news about the announcements coming from each event.

And there was a ton of announcements, from new crime comics from the creators of 100 Bullets, to a bunch of maps and financial documents surrounded by a comic book by Jonathan Hickman, to a story about the Six Million Dollar Man written by a man with experience writing about someone who wants to become a real boy.

We also discuss:

  • Black Panther #1, written by Ta-Nehisi Coates, with art by Brian Stelfreeze, and:
  • The Fix #1, written by Nick Spencer, with art by Steve Lieber!

And, the normal disclaimers:

  • This show contains spoilers. If you don’t want to hear why The Black Monday Murders by Jonathan Hickman will be the comic most likely to give you maps and sadness, tread lightly.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. You want your boss to hear about why it’s awesome to consume Incompetence Porn? Then get some headphones.

Thanks for listening, suckers!


Editor’s Note, 7/29/2013, 8:30 a.m.: Article updated with quotes from Pinocchio: Vampire Slayer writer Van Jensen, and we thank him for his comments.

In addition, we originally reported that original Pinocchio: Vampire Slayer publisher Slave Labor Graphics was publishing the omnibus. Instead, the publisher is Top Shelf Productions. We regret the error, and have updated the piece to reflect the changes.

It’s been a little under about a year since the final chapter of Pinocchio: Vampire Slayer by writer Van Jensen and artist Dusty Higgins, Of Wood And Blood, was released in trade paperback and digital comics formats. And while that book was a blast, that seemed to be pretty much it. Trilogy completed, Jensen moved on to write Green Lantern Corps for DC Comics, and Higgins seems to be working on a children’s book based on stories told to him by his daughter.

So that’s it, right? All Jensen’s and Higgins’s Pinocchio stories told, correct?

Yeah, no. Apparently they have at least one more story left in them, if not more. Robot 6 is reporting that Slave Labor Graphics has announced that Jensen and Higgins are planning to release a short story prequel to the trilogy, based on that one panel in the original where they talk about Pinocchio fighting a vampire gorilla. Remember that?

Yeah, me neither (What do you want from me? I read it ten months ago). So here’s the panel:

EDITOR’S NOTE: This review is based on a review copy of Pinocchio: Of Wood and Blood Part 2 provided free of charge to Crisis On Infinite Midlives by pubisher Slave Labor Graphics and writer Van Jensen.

Pinocchio is a bad motherfucker.

Pinocchio: Of Wood and Blood is the concluding chapter of Pinocchio: Vampire Slayer, which Amanda and I came across completely by accident at San Diego Comic-Con in 2011 at the Slave Labor Graphics booth. We picked it up based purely on the title – how can you not give a book named Pinocchio: Vampire Slayer a try? If we’d seen a book titled Cinderella: Street Vigilante we’d have bought that too – and were delighted to find an action-packed, funny story about Pinocchio and his puppet crew hunting down vampires by telling lies (think along the lines of, “I will take no joy in staking your dead ass and dragging it screaming into the daylight”), which grows his nose and gives him a handy, on-demand wooden stake for bringing the stabby.

At last year’s SDCC, Amanda picked up the first two books of Van Jensen’s and Dusty Higgins’s Pinocchio, Vampire Slayer from the Slave Labor Graphics booth, partially because the title was cool, and partially because we needed something to read in the hotel bathroom while suffering through either travel-related constipiation or, eventually, crippling beer shits.

Turns out it was well worth the speculative purchase (Neither of us had heard of the book before buying it); it was a smart, funny story about a bad-assed Pinocchio who killed vampires by lying (Along the lines of, “I am going to take no joy in stabbing you in the Goddamned chest.”), breaking off his nose and staking vampires in the heart with it. It’s a hell of a clever conceit, and a damnsight less disturbing an idea than, say, Ron Jeremy, Vampire Slayer.

The second book ended on a cliffhanger – Pinocchio turned into a real boy, which is like taking The Punisher’s gun and replacing it with a My Little Pony plushie – and we have been patiently waiting for book three, Of Wood And Blood. Well, the wait is over: Slave Labor Graphics has released the complete first issue to Comic Book Resources’ Robot 6 for free, and the first and second issues will be available for download via the Slave Labor Graphics Web site and comiXology later this week.