Wednesday, 26 March 2008

No Really...

...I really, really am going to move house now. That means that I really am going to be out of blogging action for a couple of days (at the least). Really.

I don't even know when I'm going to get a chance to go to the comic shop.

Move along now. Nothing to see here

PS Check out Wednesday's Daily Mirror sports section for a Judge Dredd special!

Tuesday, 25 March 2008

L L C Recommends

That Marvel Premiere Classic book, "Iron Man: Demon In A Bottle" I was on about the other week is great. I have a couple of minor quibbles, the main one being that the dust jacket has a shiny black background that gets scuffed mighty easily, but the story itself is of course a classic.

I'm sure that Micheline and Layton meant it to be the comics equivalent of The Lost Weekend, but in truth it just ends up being a blast that left me wishing that Iron Man was drunk all the fucking time. Honestly, forget the sober Stark currently running SHIELD, BORING! We need drunk Tony back so we can have more scenes like this one...


Oopsh! I'shmasshed a winder!

This is just such a great bit of drunk behaviour. It actually made me laugh out loud when I read it. Look at that wiggly trail he's left behind him! Ha Ha. WTG Iron Man!

It gets better though. Scanning police radio frequencies the pissed up crime fighter receives word of a derailment involving a train loaded with dangerous chemicals...

This is the superhero equivalent of that moment in the pub when you're utterly bladdered and try to carry three pints back to the table at the same time. Oh God, indeed...

Fantastic, we've all been there. You've made a complete drunken arse of yourself, no-one wants to listen to you anymore and the only thing to do is leave. So that's what Iron Man does. He just jets away in silence, leaving the cops to deal with the consequences of the awful chemical spillage which is so bad that it requires evacuation of everyone in a five mile radius.

God bless you drunken Iron Man, may your glass remain forever full!

I should think you did more than just feel it

Look, it's not comics but...

Childish I know, but then I'm a 36 year old who reads comics, what did you expect?

Monday, 24 March 2008


I'm about to move house. All is chaos. My main concern is that the removals men might steal my copy of Green Lantern #1, but I'm also scared that I will be without internet access for a few days. Oh the horror!

Anyway, suffice to say things are likely to be a bit quiet on the blogging front until I'm safely ensconced in my new lair. Might still get a chance to do the odd update, but in the meantime may I recommend you take a look at some of the fine blogs I've added to Linkorama.

Pip Pip!

Saturday, 22 March 2008

Two Teasers

Next Week in The Crunch!

The Crunch is NOW!

Alan Moore

Newsarama's fine blog has word of an interview with Alan Moore on the BBC's website.

It's here

Start the player up, let the intro whizz by, then once you hit the programme itself fast forward to around the 19 minute mark and you'll get your Moore.

Nothing new, but it's always nice to hear the great man reading his own comics in a variety of silly voices.

Thursday, 20 March 2008

Shopping List

Gahhh Easter approaches. I fucking hate Easter. It's one of those times of year when everyone starts yabbering on about how much they're looking forward to a long weekend.

"Four days with no work, woo-hoo!" they'll put on their Facebook status updates.

And I'll say, "Fuck off!" because as per usual I have to work all four days.

So there you go, great cunting fuckbuckets to you and your Easter weekend! I hope you choke on your lindt eggs.

Here's what I'll be reading when I'm not busy wishing for rain to ruin your Bank Holiday...

The Red Skull is to blame for the sub-prime mortgage crisis and we're all gonna have our homes repossessed by Nazis! Yay!

Goldfish men from outer space.

Brilliant, confusing, soon to be ruined/canceled when Greg Rucka ups sticks to Marvel


So good they canceled it! WTG Marvel!

Expensive fanzine fun. Don't need, may not read. Oh dear.

Wednesday, 19 March 2008

Warren Ellis Writes...

From 2000AD Prog 207 11th April 1981



Less than two years to go folks!

From 2000AD Prog 55 11th March 1978

Sci Fi nonce dies

That was the suggestion for a headline from one of the bright sparks at work.

Of course none of the kiddie fiddling accusations were ever proven, so we'll give Arthur C Clarke the benefit of the doubt.

I have to admit I've never read any of his books (for shame) but hey, I've seen the film so that's alright!

RIP Sci Fi nonce!

Tuesday, 18 March 2008

One never knows...

One can only hope that the makers of this film are being mercilessly bummed by razor nobbed demons in hell.

Monday, 17 March 2008

Future Sport?

Practically every British boys comic of the late 70s and early 80s contained at least one violent future sport story. The popularity of such tales had a lot to do with the impact of Rollerball and Death Race 2000 on the nation's youth. Both films came out in 1975, but their notoriety lasted well into the next decade when kids were watching them on video for the first time.

Britain's best known comic 2000AD carried a number of classic future sport strips including Mean Team, Mean Arena, Inferno and the classic Harlem Heroes, but there are a host of lesser known strips out there including The Crunch's Arena.

There's nothing particularly original about Arena, indeed it's positively primitive compared to the sci-fi spectaculars on offer in 2000AD. Not that you'd know that from reading the blurb in the first issue...

"The most ingenious weapons the 21st century can devise" eh? Hmm, let's take a look

A spear

A rifle

A machine gun and some grenades

And a body

No disintegraters or jetpacks here. No sir, contrary to it's promise of hi-tech sporting action, Arena was nothing more than a violent low-tech slugfest. The story, such as there was one, did feature the occasional laser gun, (here's one being used to kill a bear)...

...but really they were the exception rather than the rule.

Unlike the better known strips in 2000AD there was no ball either. And whereas The Harlem Heroes and their contemporaries wore gear straight out of Rollerball, the combatants in Arena were a shabby looking bunch of misfits more likely to look like this...

...than James Caan.

The Crunch's future sport spectacular misses the future sport boat completely then! It's still a brilliantly madcap piece of 70s weirdness, but as much as I like it, the story probably disappointed the kids of the time who wanted the same kind of stuff they were seeing coming over from the States.

No wonder The Crunch didn't last.

For some snapshots of more glamorous future sport click HERE

Mouldering Old Tat

So to the monthly London mart...

I love my comics, but when I find myself in a room full of maladjusted men discussing weighty matters such as the rarity of the set of plastic vampire fangs that came free with issue #1 of Scream, I start to wonder what I'm doing with my life.

Wading through rain soaked crowds of sweaty geeks to get to old boxes of yellowing comics can certainly make a chap question whether he's on the right path. Yet there are moments when I forget how embarrassing it all is and just enjoy the buzz that finding stuff gives me...

Yes, tipped out of the nerd sack and onto the floor, that's a picture of six issues (including #1) of The Crunch my friends. Sweet, sweet comic joy! Obviously this was my most exciting purchase yesterday, but I also managed to pick up progs 50 and 55 of 2000AD for 50p a piece, the missing issue in my run of Night Force and this...

which at 50p was probably around 49p more expensive than it should have been, but which features a page that I happen to think is rather wonderful...

Click the pic to enjoy personality on a grand scale

Total spend for the day: £11.75. Not bad. It could have been a lot worse had I given in to the comic demons on my shoulder telling me to buy this...

Starlord #1 WITH free gift (£15 to you son)

Or these...

Very expensive 50s MarvelMan comics.

Or indeed the Marvel Heroclix of Devil Dinosaur...

which, while bearing some resemblance to a bloody red dog poo, is quite special and, (so I was told by the cash hungry Heroclix vendor), very rare.

Maybe next time.

Sunday, 16 March 2008

A Commonwealth pen friend

Anyone care to guess what part of the Commonwealth this prematurely balding young chap comes from?

Saturday, 15 March 2008

Mega Mart

As someone was kind enough to point out in the post below (thanks chum) there's a big comic mart on in foggy old London Tahhhhn tomorrow. As well as the usual array of American comics there's a one off sale of British comics and pulps....

I very much doubt it starts at 12am, but get there for noon and you should be alright.

I'll be making a flying visit before work in the hope that I might pick up some issues of hard to find classic THE CRUNCH

If you need directions, here's a map

Sorry for the lack of updates over the past couple of days, but real life has been getting in the way again! Curse you real life!

Thursday, 13 March 2008

How could I forget?

Oops, left this off yesterday's shopping list...

Fantastic Four #555

Quite an omission.

I was reminded by this excellent review from the ever reliable Augie De Blieck.

Wednesday, 12 March 2008

Shopping list

Is it that time of the week already? Damn.

My wallet took a fearful pounding last week (that Iron Man hardback cost me £16.99) so I'm thankful that tomorrow's trip to the comic shops of London's West End looks like being a cheaper excursion. Here's what'll be lining the old nerd sack this week...

Green Lantern Corps #22
The Corps isn't half as good as Green Lantern itself, but when you become as involved in a story as I have with GL over the past year, it becomes essential to buy everything connected with it. I'm not saying this is bad either, if you like some of the bit part players in the main title you'll love it.

Wonder Woman #18
Hmm, that last story fizzled out worryingly towards the end, still there was enough excellence about Gail Simone's first two issues to see me through and keep me on board for the moment.

Doctor Who #2
Buying this guarantees more dirty looks from my girlfriend. She's right to think that I'm too old to be reading it, but it's a Doctor Who comic for Christ's sake! What am I supposed to do?

Astounding Wolf-Man #5
I get the feeling that this isn't going down as well as Invincible or the Walking Dead which is a shame because I like it a lot. Be it superheroes, zombies or werewolves, Kirkman does soap opera comics better than anyone else out there. This one is still getting going, but it's definitely gathering pace now and I'm sure that given the chance it'll become every bit as essential as Invincible or Walking Dead.

Gutsville #3 (of 6)
Blimey, it's been so long since issue #2 that I'd completely forgotten about this odd little comic. What can I tell you? There's this community that lives in the belly of a huge sea monster and they're all rather weird. Yeah that about sums it up. A bit like the Klarion the Witch Boy/Seven Soldiers mini.

Amazing Spider-Man #553
AS-M #552 was by far the weakest in the new series so far. Writer Bob Gale loaded his script with heavy handed expository dialogue that might have been an intentional nod to the glory days of Stan Lee, but which felt out of place here. Phil Jimenez's art is nice, but I get the feeling that Gale's issues are going to be the ones I look forward to least. Never mind at least we get Slott back in a few weeks.

Thunderbolts #119
Look I'll buy most nearly everything Warren Ellis writes, so while Thunderbolts has been a bit off of late I'm still picking it up. About time Norman got that goblin outfit on now though don't you think? I mean we've had nearly a year of him threatening to do it.

Tuesday, 11 March 2008

Luke Cage: A sceptic in action

I love Luke Cage, he's just the most sensible man in the Marvel U. I mean here's a chap who deals with whacked out crazy shit on a daily basis, yet remains utterly convinced that it's all nonsense. Take Hero for Hire #13 for example.

Some super-powered, talking tigers have been on the rampage killing accountants at City Hall. The Mayor wants Cage to investigate.

Cage's reaction?...

Yeah. Fuck that talking tiger shit bro'. Get the Avengers on it.

Of course there's a moment in every Luke Cage story where Luke finds out that the half assed super-villain jive is for real. In the case of Hero for Hire #13, that moment comes when Cage is attacked by the very same cats that he's been so keen to pooh pooh...

It takes something as painful as a tussle with multilingual tigers to wake Cage up to reality, but once he's onside there's no holding him. He pummels the big cats into submission while at the same time delivering the coolest speech ever given by a man punching an animal...

Yeah, you hear that RSPCA? Cage don't need no jazz!

whupping safely delivered, the cats slink off leaving Cage to recover. Once he's rested up he gets down to some detective work. Ever the sceptic, he's still keen to find a rational, jive free answer to the puzzle of the talking tigers. And, after a bit of digging around in City Hall, he manages to link the death of an accountant at the hands (or paws) of the big cats to a crazed Spanish teacher with a passion for the circus and an axe to grind about education cuts.

Here's our man...

That's Cage's speech bubble in the bottom right hand corner. Even after seeing the talking tigers at close quarters he's reluctant to believe they're for real. It takes a classic bit of exposition from the baddie to finally convince him that this cat and his cats are what they say they are...

Yeah, yeah. Heard it all before mate. Doctor Doom you ain't.

Needless to say Cage isn't impressed by all this either and delivers a few rudimentary lessons of his own to Lionfang accidentally killing him in the process...

Oh well, shit happens.

Monday, 10 March 2008

A brief trip to Borders/My girlfriend reviews Doctor Who #1

Nipped into our local Borders today to get out of the rain and have a mooch about in the graphic novel section. It's not all that bad really, stocks all the big Marvel and DC titles + a few of the old indie classics (Maus, American Splendour etc etc). Standard Borders fare.

One point worth mentioning is the new section for floppies. Excellent news, no?! Well maybe. Sadly I don't think it's going to last. Take a look at these pics...

Yup, they've pinned it to the end of a magazine rack and hidden it behind a massive plastic box of HELLO! magazines. Seriously, no casual browser is even going to notice it's there. Even if you do see it, you're not going to be able to browse through the titles as it's physically impossible to get in between the shelf and the HELLO! box.

And listen to this, they're asking £3.25 per comic! WTF!? I can't imagine that they'd sell anything at those prices. Anyone mug enough to pay that premium is probably too stupid to find the cunningly hidden things anyway.

Terrible job.


Picked up IDW's new Doctor Who comic. It's OK. Nothing special.

That's my incisive review out of the way, now here are the thoughts of my girlfriend: "Urgggh. It looks horrible. What terrible art." (She thinks all comic art is terrible so this is not a surprise)

Pauses to flick through.

"This is intended for children, why are you reading it?"

Stares intently at artist's impression of David Tennant.

"I don't think David Tennant would be very happy with this"

Stick those on the back cover of your collected edition IDW!

Sunday, 9 March 2008

The Disintergrating Top!

OK this is about the grimmest piece of pre-code sadism I've ever seen.

1952 folks. Yup, 1952.

Panels taken from Chamber of Chills #6 reprinted in The Mammoth Book of Horror Comics