Thursday, December 03, 2009

Green Lantern Corps -- Gingerbread Division!

In brightest day
In blackest night
No cookie shall escape my sight!

Monday, November 30, 2009

I am selling comics!!

Lots o' comics for sale!

So I went thru all my books a while ago and came up with this huge stack to let go on ebay. It was way too much to post all at once so I've been doing it every other week or so. And I must not have been paying attention to recent solicitations, because like clockwork at the store I began to notice trade collections being released for years-old books I planned to sell!

Most have sold (tho some take a couple posts), so there are some folks out there who still want the floppies. More on this very subject soon...

What's up, Sweet Thing?

Picked these packets up from my local diner, when I noticed not two but three separate labels on the same Aspartame sweetener. Is there a transition correcting a prior transition? Is there different labeling for different markets that got mixed up?

Who knows, but for me the choice (of label, not sweetener) should be clear.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Marvel U: Too True

True Stories of the Core Marvel Universe is a very entertaining read. Puts things into context nicely, I must say.

Lotta neat stuff at the host, Comics Alliance, too.

Snagged from The Beat

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Lantern Rings: Green and Red

I wasn't really into getting the whole spectrum of promotional rings, tho I did dig the Black Lantern Ring. Like that one, I did a little ring hackery to make them my own. Just some ink pens and a little creativity, not hard to do: a metallic brush pen and some black pin-lining for the green, and a little black and burnish for the red. They are quite nice on thier own, the rings themselves have a metallic sheen in the plastic. But it's still fun to add a little personality :-)

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

New Comics Day

Whoa, it's been a while!

Blackest Night
Green Lantern
Green Lantern Corps
Power Girl

An entirely predictable lineup for me, no doubt. The fact is my interest in comics has tanked in recent months, and I'm primarily sticking around to see how Blackest Night (won't) turn out-- like some vain attempt at loyalty in waiting out the finale of one's favorite soap opera even though you've long outgrown it.

There are still interesting books on the shelves and artists I'd like to follow, tho the ever-forthcoming trade collections take care of my needs more and more.

While the soon-to-be end of my weekly comics collecting days is both melancholic and not here fast enough, Blackest Night becomes an unintentionally symbolic storyline. Dead rise, heroes die, dead heroes rise, end of the universe draws nigh. It is an unending cycle that can only stop when the combined emotions of the psyche work together to overpower the dark forces behind it. Will, Fear, Hate, Love, Greed, Hope, and Compassion are all emotions I've held in my years-long affair with comic books, yet like all things the irony is that Death ultimately wins out.

BUT OH YEAH, I totally got me some Green Lantern Rings.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Venture Bros. is like... Damn.

Yes, The Venture Bros. is my favorite show, yes it's always got cool stuff. But sometimes the thing just surprises me with it's overal quality and ingenuity of what we have come to know of as "the cartoon". This past Sunday's season opener was throughly enjoyable and delivers both action and gags galore in true Venture style-- but the Memento-esque editing employed in the overall narrative was downright ingenious. Dare I say sophisticated. I don't know exactly how to describe it, but comic books were involved and it was terribly original.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

New Comics Day

Green Lantern Corps

I had completely forgotten that the "final" issue of Planetary was forthcoming. For a while I was convinced that the previous issue was the last. But it is good to see the whole crew back again, it is a very enjoyable book. Getting this final story so long afterwards is the impetus for going back and re-reading the series, almost as if that was the general plan for followers. At under 30 issues, that's not too much of a task. While Planetary evolved in to an arching saga to determine the identity of Elijah Snow, some of its most memorable stories are the one shots that riff on comics and sci-fi mainstays. Many other books have done this, but there is something about the combination of Ellis, Cassaday, and Depuy that brought it together just so. Hard to believe this strange little trip started over 10 years ago, and a bit more so for me realizing I was there. One of the highlights of being around the WildStorm office was the constant stream of art that came in, and it was always a special treat when Layman would bounce over to his desk with one of his intermittent bouts of glee, "Have you seen the new Planetary cover?"

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Old Edco Haunt is a Crime Scene on CSI Vegas

Man did I trip the F out when watching the latest episode of CSI Las Vegas, "Working Stiffs." Stokes and Sanders roll up on a murder victim's place of former residence, which happened my own former residence: the fabulously retro Valli Tropics of Studio City, CA!

The neighborhood was known for location shoots, I saw more than a few during my time there. But seeing my actual building was quite a surprise. Tho it wasn't my apartment they went into, I think it was the manager's. Still, trippy! Doubly trippy since I also used to Live in Las Vegas, and also can recognize when they're actually on location in my favorite desert town. But trust me when I say as cool and retro as parts of Vegas can be, finding a complex like Valli Tropics is pushing it a bit.

See more of Studio City HERE.

Monday, October 05, 2009

I am selling some comics

And by some, I mean a buttload. Going for ebay again, as there are actual people who not only want such things, but will offer a small pittance for them.

The first round went pretty well, but I've got several more to go and there's lots of good stuff still getting listed. Some hard choices were made, but I've got to thin the herd for my own personal peace of mind (and closet space).

See my current listings.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

New Comics Day

Green Lantern
Power Girl
Umbrella Academy: Dallas
Hellboy Library Edition v3

Blackest Night marches on, and I gotta say it remains far more interesting in just the Green Lantern titles (which are having the habit of Green Lantern himself being suspiciously absent). But I do like it when Sinestro kicks up the dust. The Blackest Night book itself is lackluster by comparison. Tsk, tsk, DC, you don’t really have to milk everything, you know.

For library growers, another most excellent, oversized, clothbound volume of Hellboy has arrived. It is really hard not to get these. I'm not sure of their print run but my store-- which is a fairly large supplier of specialty items-- only ever gets a few of them and I'm compelled to steal one away whenever it appears. And it's soooo worth it!

On the "good reading" front, the trade edition of the latest Umbrella Academy chapter has arrived, "Dallas." Umbrella academy too has released glorious oversized hardcover editions of both its chapters, and would certainly be worth having around. But for now I'm content with aging through the trade, thoroughly enjoying it along the way.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Hey, I made a shirt

Ladies, this one's just for you! And guys, don't let that stop you from ordering a shirt for that special girlie in your life!

I paid extra close attention to the throughout the production of this shirt, from screens to inks to registration. The printer switched over to retensionable frames on this job for an extra tight screen that really shows in the crispness of the print. The shirt itself is 100% ring spun cotton for that extra soft feel. The quality of this shirt is A-list all the way.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

New Comics Day

Blackest Night

The thing about Blackest Night turning into a "non-event" in record time is perplexing if not unexpected. What has become apparent is that Death in the DCU is so often troped and recycled that I find most all of the revelations of Black Lanterns anti-climactic. The basic premise is "the dead shall rise" pretty much implies that dead characters will show up and become a Black lantern. The only real shocks the plots allow are instances where living characters are killed, to instantly become Black Lanterns. And in that respect there are the usual safe routes of which characters succumb, still only to have their deaths reverted within panels of the supposed demise.

This third issue does introduce the Indigo Lanterns in official capacity, but at the expense of any insight into the master plan of the Black Lantern agenda. How this story plans to expand into the general DCU beyond Green Lantern escapes me -- so far it's just an excuse to ressurect as many dead characters as possible and put them into black costumes.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

On this Day of Nines: The Tale of My 9's

So when was the last time you changed something about yourself? Not like a haircut or a makeover, not even like quitting smoking or drinking. Have you ever modified your own personal doctrine, something that while perhaps minor, has some effect on your day to day life?

I was taught diligent and precise lettering in my younger years by way of a Mechanical Drawing class (not to date myself, but CAD was only just hitting stride back then). A '9' was done in two strokes and that was pretty much it-- top bowl and vertical stem. Over the years my penmanship was always a source of pride, tho general attrition saw some devolving attention to a few characters, and '9' was always one of them. If left to slop a nine barely looked like a nine at all, and in worst cases could be mistaken for a '4.' In the back of my head something I always wanted to do was to change my nine to something more roman, basically the inverse '6.'

At the start of the year, being 2009, I decided now was as good a time as any. Figuring I'd have to write '2009' or '09' frequently it seemed as an extra incentive. Little did I realize how ingrained my existing writing style was. I knew it would take alot of practice so I basically started writing nines as much as possible to retrain my brain.

That's exactly what I had to do-- I had to erase old knowledge and retrain my brain in what to accept as a proper nine. Over and over again. In addition to just repeating nines I tried to train myself in using them in context with other numbers. I've gone through pages and pages of crappy nines, occasionally giving myself some mental positive reinforcement whenever I struck upon a pen stroke that hit the chord of what I wanted my nines to look like. My goal is nothing short of an effortless '9' that has the ease and readability of my '6."

With most of a year into the new nine regime, I am finally finding comfort with the general motion (which took quite a bit to get used to- for the curious I've taken to the center origin counterclockwise motion). It's not the most beautiful thing in the world, but at least I've killed the reflex of starting the old version. With the reflex in place, it's only a matter of time for my lovely little nines to be second nature.

Monday, September 07, 2009

New Label Alert: Office Depot

Looks like Office Depot is going thru a branding change... Such a shift to solid color and bold callouts is likely to get a quicker recognition among other brands.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Last Comic Day: Young Liars

The absolute best comic of this year and last is, without a doubt, Young Liars. As an artist, creator David Lapham delivers pages as only a veteran of the form could, with a transparent ease of telling a story with pictures. From its large cast and ever-increasing plot expansion ludicrousy, its all there on the page. As a writer, Lapham has raised the bar to a level I didn't think was still around in comics. Young Liars takes a relatively simple premise and eclectic cast and completely fucks you over when you least expect it. Not since the early days of Y The Last Man was I so enraptured with plot twists and cliffhangers. But with Young Liars it's not just the twists, it’s the out-of-nowhere destruction of the book's core foundations that not only entertain immensely but make you wonder how anyone comes up with this shit. I've had occasion to fare well with storytelling and the written word myself, but reading Young Liars makes me wish I was that good.

Alas, Young Liars has come to an end with issue #18. Lapham notes this was well ahead of schedule, hinting sales could just not support the book's continuation. This is very sad considering the competition. I think we should consider ourselves lucky he got us this far, and a few trade collections were warranted. As a package Young Liars is still an incredible read, I would recommend it to any (adult) reader. I'll remain grateful to Vertigo and Lapham for what we did get to read, as it will be marked as one of my all time favorites. If there's anyone to be upset with it's all the people who didn't pick up the book.

Seeing as how Young Liars was actually a finite story (also noted by Lapham), perhaps the only real loss in ending pre-maturely is "what could have been." What crazy-ass shit was Lapham going for? How could he have possibly turned the whole series on its ear yet again? He had already done so at twice (maybe thrice depending how you look at the master narrative), so that questions what in fact is the true fiction of the Young Liars world presuming there was at least one more twist in store.

Maybe you stumbled upon this post having not read Young Liars. Please do-- go pick up the first two trades (and hopefully the last third soon enough). Enjoy it. Revel in it. And by all means look forward to what Lapham has up his sleeve for next time.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Breakfast at The Breakfast Klub

Now one wouldn't think to drive two hours just for breakfast, but if you've already done so for burgers, keep that gravy train running with a stopover at Houston's famous Breakfast Klub. Home cooking that always puts a line out the door, the wait is well worth it for the good eats.

Ah, yes, the Kroissant.

And of course Wings and Waffles. Classic.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Burgers at Becks Prime, Houston

Now one wouldn't think to drive two hours just for a burger, but if that burger is from Becks Prime, you'll be glad you did. Some of you may have to drive a hell of a lot longer considering this wonderful high-class, fast service franchise is exclusive to Houston, Texas. but if you're ever in the area do yourself a favor and seek one out. It quickly hit the top of my "best burger" list-- I was skeptical of the fore-spoken praise but after just a couple bites I was a convert.

Here's the Blue Cheese Burger. God-damn-fucking-tastic.

And the Hickory Burger, no slouch.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

New Comics Day

Couple weeks worth of books, just didn't get around to posting last week :-(

Green Lantern
Power Girl
Killer of Demons TPB
Dark Entries

Boy, I sure did love that Dark Entries book, I hope Vertigo keeps them coming. I was drawn mostly to the great art by Werther Dell'edera, perfect match for the story. I haven't kept up much with John Constantine, tho I read wuite a bit of Hellblazer back in the day. And I'm not familiar with author Ian Rankin but he spun a good yarn. It's the format the wins out, tho, and kudos for this. Comics readers may be thrown by it at first, clearly packaged and designed for the book market, but that's where I hope it has the most success. Still a great book for comics and Constantine fans, check it out.

And, um, yeah... I did cut off Wednesday Comics. It is cool? Yes. Is it that cool? Not really. I'm already more interested in how they collect it.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Never Soon Enough

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

New Comics Day

Wednesday Comics
Blackest Night
Green Lantern Corps

A double dose of Blackest Night this week, where we get to see the "return" of Aquaman. What this means for whatever, whoever, and however Aquaman may return in a comic is anyone's guess. As story goes, there is the typical heavy-handedness of these big crossover events. But the art is awful nice and it's kinda cool seeing the dead rise. Still as the Blackest Night concept is clearly reaching across the DCU and they really want you to know that. Green Lantern takes a back seat. Makes me wonder if there's a GL focal point at all, which points to the usual mega-crossover pointlessness.

Case in point: also shipping this week, Blackest Night: Batman #1 (of 3). Who cares?

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Lucky J's Chicken + Waffles!

On Burnet Road just past the 2222 is a little waffle wagon called Lucky J's. Keep an eye out or you'll drive right past! But pull in next to this little gem and they'll waffle you up some waffles and fry up some chicken right on the spot. It makes a lazy sunday morning the bestest!

Monday, August 03, 2009

Sun Wukong is da bomb!

My friends know I love all things Monkey King. Well a totally awesome lad by the name of John just came back from a month-long excursion in China, and brought me back these sweet Monkey PVCs from Hong Kong!!!

There's Monkey, Pigsy, Sandy, and even Tripitaka with his Horse Yu-Lung!*

*that is actually a dragon

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Mighty Fine Burgers, Austin

A new Mighty Fine just opened in my area. If you're not familiar with the franchise, in addition to a damn fine burger Mighty Fine offers a pristine dining environment with a hometown picnic feel.

Mighty Fine also applies to the logo. Dig that Copperplate.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

New Comics Day

There are things that I buy. These things have art in them.

Wednesday Comics
GL: Tales of the Corps
Mark Schultz vol. 4
Al Williamson Flash Gordon

I'm really looking forward to this new collection of Northlanders, having thoroughly enjoyed the first.

A new volume of Mark Schultz's Various Drawings is out and it contains all kinds of goodness.

But! The venerable Flesk Publications has an even more amazing offering out this week, in a collection of all of Al Williamson's work on Flash Gordon! The comics art presented in black and white, and has random pin-ups and unpublished pages to boot. Really, really, fantastic stuff.

Check the links!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

New Comics Day

Brutal week!

Green Lantern
GL: Tales of the Corps
Power Girl
Wednesday Comics
Dethklok vs The Goon
You Have Killed Me
Parker, The Hunter

Two amazing graphic novel offerings this week! First up is Darwyn Cook's delivery of Richard Stark's Parker, The Hunter. It's published by IDW and is a slick package all around, a tight little hardcover with alot of heft. Cooke seems to have married well with the pulp noir of Starking's Parker series and his art is a real draw here in black, white, and blue ink. Man does it look cool!

Next is another hardcover offering, the impressively thick You Have Killed me by Jamie S. Rich and Joëlle Jones. Jones' art is lovely and crisp in black and white, and she has a knack for loose character that really pops on the page. Another fine offering from Oni Press who has one of the best graphic novel libraries around.

If you gotta see for yourself, each of the book links above has a downloadable preview!

Being a rather hefty lineup at the counter, I passed on the latest volume of Flight which also hit the shelves. It still looks to be a solid buy, tho I'm sure I can put it on the back burner for a while.

Friday, July 17, 2009

New Label Alert: Dep Sport Gel

While my impeccable coif is world renowned, it might surprise some to know the occasional "product" I employ comes on the cheap.

The local HEB carries these nifty travel-size gels that come in a conveniently compact and ridiculously inexpensive package. The Dep Sport Endurance Styling Gel has a newly updated look, and now looks to be living up to its name.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

New Comics Day

Blackest Night
BN: Tales of the Corps
Wednesday Comics
Young Liars (!)
Modern Masters: Chris Sprouse

Blackest Night kicks into high gear this week with two books. I've already resigned to not picking up any tie-in books that are not directly related to green Lantern, and wouldn't you know the first one is. Tales of the Corps sheds some light on some of the newly introduced spectrum lanterns, including the mysterious Indigo Tribe.

The Blackest Night book itself is chocked to the gils, and I'm not sure what to make of it just yet. What worries me is writer Geoff Jones appears to be in full-on "Crisis" mode, eschewing what could be a fascinating take on the living dead for typical Crisis-like DCU gratuity. What excites me is the amazing art being done by Ivan Reis who is clearly pulling out all the stops for this series.

Oh, and I got a nifty promotional Black Lantern ring! The sharp-eyed may be wondering if my ring looks a little cooler than theirs. Indeed, just take a fine-tip sharpie and life hack that bad boy.