Monday, September 21, 2009

Marvel Zombies

I am a fan of horror movies, as anyone who has read my other blog, The Last Picture Blog, can attest to. I also like zombie films. When it comes to comics, I do enjoy the horror ones, especially EC and, of all things, Charlton's horror lines from the days of yore. I do not, however, read the current crop of horror and, most notably, zombie comics.

I don't know why I don't read these titles like Walking Dead, which has gotten all kinds of acclaim. I've never given them a chance, and I really have no desire to. It's not that I don't think they're any good. In fact, the one I did read, the first Marvel Zombies series, was actually quite enjoyable. It did not make me want to pick up the other series in that line, and nor did it get to me to explore other titles. So why the hesitation to read these?

I'm picky when it comes to new titles (not that these are new now, but if I didn't get them when they started it is doubtful I will pick them up now). I'm also very random. When the zombie books first started getting big, I was doubtful of whether or not they would last. I didn't want to start a series that would be around five months and end without a formal conclusion. Therefore, I avoided them. When it was obvious they weren't going anywhere, it was already too late. I stayed away despite my friends telling me how good these books were (and some amazing covers). The Marvel book I did read was fine, but it also came across as a novelty with no real bearing in the Marvel Universe (why this should matter is obvious -- I'm also big on continuity). It was a big What-If that made me ask, "What if it mattered?"

In the future I may pick up the back issues of various series on the cheap (when I no longer have to worry about car repairs, plane tickets and the like). There are great deals to be had on eBay, but I really have enough to read now at the moment (nine short boxes or so). Until then, I've got the films. At least I know those won't end halfway through.

Monday, September 14, 2009

DC Entertainment Marvels at Disney

First came the entire Disney buys Marvel, and now Warner Bros. has decided to tighten up control on DC Comics (to be known as DC Entertainment). And while nobody knows exactly how all this will play out, I am starting to fear the worse.

If you're reading this blog, chances are you a comic book fan. If you are a comic book fan you know that comic books just aren't selling like they used to. Disney and Warner Bros. are not ignorant to this fact. This is where things start to get sketchy.

Disney and Warner Bros. want these properties (characters) to make them money. There is money there to be made, as successful video games and movies have shown. What hasn't been making money is comic books. If I were the head of either project I would have some tough decisions to make. The people going to the movies and buying the video games aren't buying the comic books in the same numbers, which makes me wonder: Why are the comics necessary?

We fans know why we love them, but if there is money to be gained and a company can cut out something that isn't making a profit -- why not? People going to see an Avengers movie won't care if there isn't an Avengers related comic book out there (and there is plenty of material to keep in reprints). Screenwriters have shown they are more than capable of turning out a good comic book movie using only the skeleton of the comic books. So why not cut out the comic books -- the least profitable part of the chain?

A friend of mine pointed out that comic books are cheap R&D for the companies -- testing what works and doesn't. I'm not so sure I agree with that, but I can see the logic in it. And then there's the fact that comic book movies are probably going to end up more like Westerns, eventually dying out only to appear a decade or so later.

Having corporate fingers in artistic pies (and comic books still have not become total entertainment despite how it feels -- but it is close) never produces good results. Best case scenario is the comics keep going (if not being available in more outlets), and the companies do everything to turn those other fans into comic book fans. Worst case scenario the companies end that which is not making a profit and leaves it up to "better minds" to exploit these characters for all they are worth.

I'm keeping my fingers crossed, but I don't have much hope.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Cover Review: Defenders #51

For some strange reason I remember The Defenders as having plenty of "floating head" issues. As you can see, this is no exception.

I am a fan of this comic book. I've always like the title in its original form, even though I never thought the characters were the greatest. They just seemed to work well together. Hellcat is my favorite on this cover. Nighthawk, who is being tormented by the Ringer, seems weak. I don't care how many rings there are or who is causing them to float -- rings are weak, and that is not a good way to sell a superhero comic. It's also the reason the Hulk isn't pictured in the rings. (Doctor Strange may have been a good choice because he's a cowardly magician no matter how you cut it. Those gloves! That mustache! Wong!)

To someone unfamiliar with the concept of the book or the heroes therein, they may be fooled into thinking Hellcat and company are gods looking down on the Blue Falcon's brother as he is killed by an American Gladiator. Unfortunately, that is not the comic book here. This actually just screams, "Boredom!" Imagine how that conversation by the comic rack went. "Cool! Look at this issue of The Defenders!"

"Who's the villain?"

"The Ringer."


"The Ringer."

"What's he do?"

"I don't know. Control rings."

"Star Wars out yet?"

This title had far better covers and far better villains. (Elf with gun!) This cover is a failure of Hulk-like proportions.

Monday, September 7, 2009

You Can Tell a Lobo Fan by His Erection

Guy Richie directing a Lobo movie? Say it ain't so. The guy who used to fuck Madonna? (Well, who hasn't?) A movie about a character only twelve-year-old boys and Insane Clown Posse fans care about? Lobo? Really? Why not The Web or Hourman?

I know people will probably think this is a grand idea, but think about it. It's Lobo. It's Guy Richie. We'll get plenty of zooms and convoluted plot twists, but will it do anything for the character or comic books?

I don't hate Lobo. I just think he's overrated (or was and still is in some minds). I also don't hate Richie. The two together, though, leaves plenty to be desired.

Lobo? Really?

How is this possible? How did Lobo rank a movie? How did anyone think this was a good idea?

I rally about the stupidity of Hollywood on my other blog, The Last Picture Blog. I get how Hollywood works. I understand it. Anything that can make money should. Blah, blah, blah. But Lobo? Is Richie a Lobo fan? Is he fucking some other Hollywood senior citizen? What is going on?

Hate mail can be directed at me. I'll take it. I stand behind my initial shock, though. Who knows? It could be a great movie. I doubt it, though. I like Richie's movies enough, but he is not suited to this role. Want to give him something he may be able to pull off? 100 Bullets.

You fuckers know I'm right.