Hey there, how about some old comic book movie news? How old? Like two weeks old. So recently (San Diego Comic Con... I said it was like two weeks old.) the announced Marvel Phase 2. Which is essentially post Avengers Sequels. So here are the titles with some thoughts.

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THOR: THE DARK WORLD... Wait, its not just 'THOR 2'? We aren't seeing, 'THOR: THE RETURN OF REVENGE RISING'? This is amazing. A personal pet peeve of mine is movie titles that just toss a number on the end. Its lazy. Get a little descriptive will ya? Though to be fair, there is a few words that should be avoided in the title, DARK is fringing.
What is 'THE DARK WORLD' in reference to?... I've only read 'Thor Masterworks volume 1' and Walter Simonsons run on the title (Which I highly recommend). So my Thor knowledge isn't a deep pool. But Dark World makes me think we'll be seeing some dark elves, maybe Malekith the Accursed, and MAYBE my favourite Thor villain Surtur. I at least want to see a shot of a hammer dropping onto the twilight sword, with a huge TANG! That echoes through the cosmos.
Something else I want to see in THOR:THE DARK WORLD is Beta Ray Bill, I love me some good old horse face. If he's not in this movie, he should be in the 3rd.
The film is being directed Alan Taylor, one of the directors of 'The Game of Thrones' television series on HBO. So hes no stranger to swords and sorcery. And speaking of 'Game of Thrones'... WINTER IS COMING!


CAPTAIN AMERICA: WINTER SOLDIER
WHA! Another title with a subtitle!? Well the first film had a subtitle, so its not that surprising that the second would also feature a one as well. I'm just surprised they're taking a subtitle from the comics, not going with 'CAPTAIN AMERICA: FOREVER'
I know exactly what Winter Soldier is. Its a story line that broke what was considered one of the holiest of marvel comics rules. I don't want to spoil anything, but I'll be honest I'm excited for this now.
What I want to see from this one? the return of the Red Skull, and a more defined power set for Cap. In the first, and Avengers, we don't really see Captain do anything to impressive. I want to see less of the soldier and more of the SUPER. There's that part in the first where he love taps a guard with his shield and the man goes flying, that was awesome. I also want to see him be more of a gymnast too.
This one is being directed by the directing duo of Anthony and Joe Russo. Like Alan Taylor these two are usually television directors. Responsible for such television classics as, oh wow, 'the Community', 'Arrested Development', and 'Happy Endings'? Wow that's awe-... Wait a second... Sitcoms? Great sitcoms yes, but sitcom directors are doing 'CAPTAIN AMERICA: WINTER SOLDIER'? Alan Taylor made sense but these two? Lets have a look at these guys.

What a couple of dopy looking fuckers. Anthony is the one with the goofy looking grin, and Joe is the clone gone wrong of Jason Segel. (Being serious, these guys being on board makes my excitement shoot through the roof, these guys pretty much guarantee a fun movie).

Lets continue with the movie everyone is probably most excited for...



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IRON MAN 3... oh come on! IRON MAN, IRON MAN 2 and now IRON MAN 3. Okay, so I'll know the proper sequential viewing order, but they couldn't have called it 'INVINCIBLE IRONMAN', or are they saving that for the reboot when Robert Downey Jr. Abandons the character? Okay fine. Rumour is they'll be following Extremis story line, then IRON MAN EXTREMIS could be your title!
CAPTAIN AMERICA is following the Winter Soldier storyline, and has that in his title, then why not do that with Iron Man?... Sigh. All I want to see in this movie is FING FANG FOOM. Bring it on! Giant Dragon!
Directing this is Shane Black who directed 'KISS, KISS, BANG, BANG'. Shane is apparently really good friends with RDJ, and director of IRON MAN and IRON MAN 2 Jon Favreau (who also plays Happy Hogan in the films).
This film should be fine. Apparently Shane advised the guys on the first two films, and now Favreau is advising Shane.

And what movies has Marvel announced?

ANTMAN fuck yes! I know most of the general non comic book readers are probably thinking 'Who? What the fuck does Antman do? Talk to ants?'... Well not just talk to them... Don't roll your eyes at me!
Antman not only can communicate with ants, but shrink and grow! And I love characters that can shrink for some reason (subconscious relation to penises?)... but beyond that, Antman is just an awesome character. He's my favourite character on the Earths Mightiest Heroes cartoon, and a character I've really wanted to read more of.
Edger Write, director of 'SHAUN OF THE DEAD', 'HOT FUZZ', the television series 'SPACED' and of course the comic film 'SCOTT PILGRAM VS THE WORLD' is handling this one. Hes a guy that knows how to handle his action and his comedy.
Rumour is the story will follow Hank Pym the first Antman in the 1960's, then flash forward to the second Antman Scott Lang. I'm actually mostly familiar with Eric O'Grady... the Irredeemable Antman AKA the worlds most unlikable super hero.
What I want out of Antman, is the set up for a villain for avengers by the name of Ultron. Also some good old fashioned Antman and Wasp!

And then there is...

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY Again, you probably responded with, 'Huh? Who?' Well let me just say... Rocket fucking Raccoon. An alien Raccoon. GROOT a sentient tree man! Need I say more?

 
People always have something to bitch about in comic book movies. Collected here are the top five complaints about comic book movies that annoy me. Enjoy!


Giant Squid Monster

I'm here writing about 'Watchmen' without my copy of 'Watchmen' nearby. So bare with me if I get some facts wrong.
If you've seen the film 'Watchmen', you know in the end Ozymandias has framed Dr. Manhattan as a mass murder. This plot is tightly wrapped, very secure. All the pieces fall into place. The only problem? Its not what happened in the comics.
When ever an adaptation is made, a group of people get their panties in a bunch. This group is called, the fans. Fans usually are purest, and any changes are a slight not only against the property, but to them personally.
Example: “Kristen Stewart doesn't look anything like ME! She can't be Bella Swan.”
'Watchmen' has a huge fan base. And when it was announced that a film was being made, their pants not only bunched up, they were back drafted into their ass. People would not subtle for anything less then a exact adaptation, zero changes...
...Naturally they had to make some changes. Some for the better, some for the worse. But none got as much back lash as the ending (They changed the ending).
In the graphic novel, Ozymandias does not frame Dr. Manhattan, but instead frames a fictitious giant alien squid. The squid was designed and created by scientist and artist who believed it was for a Hollywood blockbuster.
To understand this, imagine Steven Spielberg on the set of 'Jurassic Park' had his crew create a super realistic T-rex, then killed them all. That's what Ozymandia's plan was. Its really not that big of a plot point, and I personally think the movies ending is better.
To most 'Watchmen' fans? The lack of Giant Squid Monster was the movies greatest flaw, and instantly made it shit. Which is retarded, it REALLY changes nothing in the plot. Its a superficial complaint, actually most complaints about comic book movies are superficial complaints.

Lack of costume

I'm going to admit something to you all. Its a personal belief of mine that you have to be tiny bit gay to be into wrestling, and super hero comics. Other wise, why would we be so into guys in flamboyant costumes? And comic fans are VERY picky about the costumes.
You'll get some serious backlash if your super hero movie isn't loyal to the costumes. Example, lots of people are against the new Spider-man reboot because of the costume. Lots of people were against the X-men films because of their lack of costumes. They didn't want those black leather costumes.They wanted this:

The fact is not all super hero costumes are suitable for reality. Bright yellow and blue doesn't translate well into film. Though 'X-Men First Class' did a great job mimicking the Jim Lee's yellow and blue uniforms from the 90's.
The X-men costumes are fine, but if some studios had it their way, many costumes would be altered to retarded levels. Example, Fox wanted Ben Affleck as Daredevil to NOT wear a mask. Famously Kevin Smith has told of his experiences writing a Superman sequel, where the producer (Jon Peters), didn't want Superman to wear a cape, or tights... or fly.
One of the greatest shames though is the Green Goblin in Sam Rami's 'Spider-man'. I liked the helmet version, but when I saw the test footage of the mask version? I fell in love.

Fans are picky though, and will bitch endlessly about every nitpick they can pinch between their fingers. Whether its the CGI, the costume or the characters RACE.

Changing Race


Lets go to 'the Hunger Games'. There is some character named Rue, who was black in the film and the fans were annoyed. Having not realized that Rue in the book was in fact black. Luckily racial ambiguity in comics isn't a problem since its a visual medium. And in the event that you aren't sure about a characters race, (for what ever reason), its easy to tell.
If a character is black, It'll be clear by their name. (Black Bolt, Black Panther, Bling, Brother Voodo ect). Some reason black characters don't hit it as big in comics. Maybe there is no real interesting black characters (since most are characterized by the fact they're not white), or maybe we're all just a bunch of racist.
The strange truth is, a lot of the black characters in comics, kind of need to be black. Most where made during the civil rights movement, and thus a African American super hero was quite poignant.
On the other hand, its not very crucial now a days that Peter Parker is white. He could easily be black, or Latin American, and his character would stay the same... Sadly, must people don't feel that way.
People are more enraged by a change in race then any change to plot or costume. There was serious backlash when Micheal Clark Duncan played the King Pin. There was great annoyance when Heimdall of Thor was black. And there was serious rage when a British Actor was cast as Superman.
How did all of this racially incorrect casting affect the quality of each of these films? Not at all. Comic fans just like to bitch and whine.
What is a personal nitpick of my mine is when the films affect the comics. Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) in the Marvel Ultimate Universe is not only black, but they requested that they base his design off of Samuel L. Jackson. Before that in the regular Marvel Universe (616), Nick Fury was white... At least for the 47 years leading up to the Avengers movie.
Now, for whatever reason, marvel was in love with their Ultimate Universe line for a while. Every video game based off a marvel character had the word 'Ultimate' wrenched into the title just for some kind of recognition. And the characters all wore their 'Ultimate' comics costumes... but retained all their 616 universe stories... Its all kind of confusing.
Regardless. 'The Avengers' movie needed a splash of colour beyond green, and Samuel L. Jackson was an obvious choice. Marvel worried they would confuse the general, none comic reading audience, when they decided to finally check out the source material and discover a white Nick Fury. So in their infinite wisdom they concocted a masterful plan.
It had been revealed that Nick Fury had at some point (Probably the 60s) splattered his seed into a sista. Meaning he had a illegitimate black son, named Marcus Johnson. In a mini series named 'Battle Scars'. Nick Fury retires... But not after Marcus loses his eye... here is the ending...

I'm looking for a word right now... and its not subtle.

Indian Slums & Adopted Joke

These last two are lumped together, since they're both kind of equally retarded, and both about the same movie. 'The Avengers'.
If you recall, early in the movie (I'm assuming everyone has seen it), we're introduced to Bruce Banner in what was apparently a Indian slum. He's using his medical knowledge to aid the sick there. Hes being a regular Norman Bethune... Except not a communist.
This scene didn't even register to me. I was just like, “Good Dr.Banner helping these poor sick people.” But India was just like, “Enough of this slum dog shit! We're not all that poor! We don't need fucking whites helping us!”... Yes I am paraphrasing slightly... honestly, only slightly. Also it helps if your read that line as if its being said by an angry Gerry Bednob.
Here is what I think. That 3 minute scene in 'The Avengers', didn't have people walking out of the theatre going, “Damn is India in the dumps.” By the end of 'The Avengers' people were to busy talking about the other 120 minutes. No one gives a shit about India, when their is a fucking giant green monster in the movie.
The second thing, was something that probably got a chuckle out of you in the theatre.

Thor: Have a care how you speak. Loki is beyond reason, but he is of Asgard. And he is my brother.
Natasha Romanoff: He killed eighty people in two days.
Thor: He's adopted.

Everyone in my theatre laughed, or at least it sounded that way. Apparently there was a group of people out there whose pouting was over shadowed by the yuks of the audience. This small group was the adopted.
An adoption group was highly insulted by the adoption joke. They felt it was unnecessary that they should be reminded of the fact that their parents didn't want them. So insulted as they were they did what anyone would do. Started a petition.

As noted in a petition created by Jamie Berke on Change.org, “According to your scriptwriter, the fact (Loki) was adopted is the reason he is a bad guy!...Being adopted is not something to use for the butt of jokes! Marvel, immediately cease using adoption as the butt of jokes AND issue a public apology to the adoption community!”

Holy shit. Fuck you, you adopted shit heads. Do you not shower because your worried the water will damage your thin skin? First let me explain the joke to you adopted fucks.
The fact that Loki was adopted isn't the reason he was a bad guy, the reason he was a bad guy was the fact that he's a power hungry asshole. The reason Thor points out that Loki is adopted was to distance himself by making a point of the fact that they're technically not blood.
So fuck you, and your public apology. I hope marvel makes MORE jokes about adoption just so you'll continue crying. Cause news flash asshole. No one feels bad for the kids that were adopted. People feel bad for the kids that HAVENT been adopted.
And I'm willing to bet those kids weren't offended by the joke in 'the Avengers'... Mostly because they haven't heard the joke, since they don't have parents to take them to go see it.


 

I don't know what I hate more. Moving or job hunting. Moving is a little more physically demanding, but job hunting is psychologically demanding. But at least while job hunting there is no couches involved. Fuck I hate moving couches. So long, and awkwardly shaped, never want to fit through doors properly. If they weren’t so damn comfortable, I'd organize burnings.


Anyway, its been a week since I've had consistent updates. So I've decided that this is the perfect time for me to... fill up your time?
Here is the deal. Films, tv shows and video games have ALWAYS been more popular with the general audience then the comics themselves. Let me put things in perspective for a moment. 'The Dark Knight' made 1billion dollars at the box office. Lets say, for simplicities sake, that the average amount to see a movie is 10 bucks. That is a 100 million people who saw 'The Dark Knight' in theatre. In DC's new 52 relaunch, 'The Dark Knight #1' Comic sold 109,321 copies. Why? Why are people so open to the idea of watching a Batman movie, but not read the comic? Well, there are many explanations.

1.Comics are lame, and for kids. (have to be diehard)
2.Comics are to much of a commitment of time.
3.Comics cost to much.
4.There is so many comics, where do I even start?
5.Where do I even get comics?
6.I don't even know what comics I'd even like.

These, are all valid reasons for the most part, I get that it is an intimidating hobby to get into on the fly. But guess what, I'm here to help you.

Number 1.

“Comics are Lame and for Kids.”

What a bunch of horse shit! You're a fucking dumb ass if you think this is true. Read 'Chronicles of Wormwood' and tell me comics are for kids. Oh wait. You’re an ignorant non comic reading fuck so you'd never read it. So how about I just tell you about it.

There is a scene in 'Chronicles of Wormwood', where the Pope, is being fucked in the ass, by a nun wearing a strap on... Yeah, give that to your nephew as a gift at his first communion.
Or even, 'Pride of Baghdad', which features a group of lions who escape from the Baghdad zoo during the opening assault by American troops. Its like Lion King sort of, except you know... with Lion rape.

There are comics for kids, teens, and adults... and for sexually charged adults. Everything from Disney to 'Two Girls One Cup' is covered in the funny books. Or, even something like... I don't know 'The Walking Dead'. Does anything about that show seem like its for children?

Here is some comic book knowledge. Most mainstream comics are for a PG 13 audience, to appeal to both adults and kids. Its actually my understanding, that the all ages market for comics is struggling to stay alive.

People who read comics when they were 14, back in 1968, kept on reading comics. They are now 44 years old. They're not interested in reading Super Hero Squad. They loved Adam West as Batman, running around with Burt Ward, but now, as middle aged men, they want Christian Bale.

There are a million comics that appeal to adults. But on the off chance that you're looking for comics for kids. Based on reputation, I can say that 'Archie Comics: Sonic the Hedgehog' is super popular, but I'd also recommend 'Archie Comics: Megaman', or anything from PaperCutz or BOOM! Studios children books. I can highly recommend, based on experience 'Darkwing Ducks' current series is very enjoyable.

But if we're talking about kids a little more mature, or kids that would appreciate more complex narratives, then I recommend older issues of... well any super hero comic. Old issues of Spider-Man, or Batman are excellent for kids.


Number 2.

“Comics are to much of a commitment of time.”

A comic book movie can range anywhere from an hour and half too two hours. 'The Amazing Spider-man' is in its late 600's. You can't be expected to read all that obviously, though I can applaud you for wanting to... and... I will explain how you can easily and cheaply later. Right now I'm going to be realistic.

Comics, like any hobby, takes a degree of time commitment. It took time to read 'Hunger Games', or 'Game of Thrones'. Most video games are around 40 hours long. You have to schedule in time to sit down and watch 'Breaking Bad' or 'Walking Dead'. Heck, 'Smallville' based around the Superman mythos, lasted ten seasons, a wide audience was committed to watching it each week, for ten years.

Laziness, is a lazy excuse. Yes, comic books do require, if you buy issue to issue, that once a month you buy a chapter. Also requires some research, and a little “general” knowledge. You don't have to read every issue of Spider-man to understand what is happening in Spider-man. But it doesn't hurt to read his Wiki page.


Number 3.

“Comics cost to much.”

Comics used to cost like 5 to 10 cents, this is back in the day when you could get a blowie for a penny. It was a golden age... for comics, not blow jobs.
Now a days, a single issue of a marvel comic in Canada, cost around 5 bucks, and 5 bucks a month is reasonable, but people hardly ever read a single comic title, so four titles? Thats 20 bucks a month, can be kind of costly... But not really.

And it can get even cheaper. I spend a different amount each month, since I collect my comics in hard cover books, or trade paper backs. This means a few things. It means that I'm months behind in stories, so I have to traverse the internet carefully or I may spoil the stories for myself. Also means I have to wait patiently for the next volume to be released.

Trade paper backs/Hard Covers can range anywhere from 15-40 bucks, some omnibus are a lot more, like 80-100, but don't worry about that. Generally collected editions, collect anywhere from 4-30 issues.
That's right, you can get 30 issues for 15$. 30 issues that individually cost around 5$. Don't make me do the math. Its obvious that is pretty cheap. I'll talk about those, cheap collections soon, actually I'll talk about the bonuses to reading collected editions period in a little.

There is also comics on disc that cost, around 50 bucks. Example of this is '44 Years of Fantastic Four' which collects 550 issues. Only problem with this is you don't PHYSICALLY have the books. But you have to understand that the issues collected are a lot of the time is really rare. And as we learned in my first blog post, rare comics can cost a LOT of money.

The point is that comics don't need to cost that much. You can read comics cheaply, or I don't know... for free on the internet. There are plenty of web comics with just as much depth and excitement as any comics on the shelves. And I'll get to them later on as well...


END OF PART 1

 

I don't know how the conversation had come up, it was probably one of those brainless late night conversation on the phone, but my girlfriend had asked me, “Which comic book character am I most like?”
It didn't take me long to select Kitty Pryde of the X-men. Not only physically does she remind me of her, but they share a plucky, sarcasticness coupled with a great intelligence (Kitty Pryde for computers, my girlfriend in science). She then asked me, which comic book character I was most like.

That was tough. Physically I guess I kind of look like Foggy Nelson, a character that is just below sidekick in the comic book ranking system. But I only look like him by default, since in comics there is no 'chubby' characters for the most part, they're either extremely fit, or extremely out of shape. Regardless though, its more important that you relate to a character on a personal level. But I have very little in common with these fantastic characters.

At least that's what I thought, until I was sitting on the toilet reading issue 74 of Amazing Spider-man, as collected in Essential Spider-man volume 4. The comic features the introduction of African American Hobie Brown who I STRONGLY identify with. There is nothing I'm more familiar with then the plight of a African American in the 1960's... Wait that's not right.

Hobie is a professional window washer, something I did for years, but he wants more... which is something I've wanted for years. This comic issue has two pages of dialogue that nearly completely mirror a conversation between me and my girlfriend, between Hobie and his girlfriend.

Hobie, is a cool cat, but where he is in his life just doesn't jive for him. You dig? What Hobie wants to do is be an inventor, where I want to be a writer (comic books in particular), we are both creators. Hobie spends much of his free time inventing, I spend most of my time writing. There are those similarities, but mainly its the discouragement hes experiencing. Cause the white man is keeping us down!

Here is a quick snippet of dialogue from the comic, pretty much word for word what my girlfriend said to me.

“You've got to snap out of it, Hobie! Stop feeling sorry for yourself! I know how clever you are... How great you are at inventing things. But you're still young! It takes time to be discovered, time to reach the goal you're trying for. Okay, so you're just a nowhere window cleaner! Whats to stop you from giving it your all? Why not bring some of your new ideas to the man you work for? What do you have to lose!” - Amazing Spider-Man issue 74, by Stan “the Man” Lee (And yes, true believer, he did give himself that nickname).

After that verbal lashing form his girl Mandy, Hobie sucks in his gut, and fluffs up his cock, like a real man and takes a shot at getting his inventions out there. He decides, whats the harm in trying, and shows off his inventions. Thats something I struggle to do, I have a hard time even telling people that I want to write comics, and an even harder time showing my actual work off to people.

I share that fear Hobie has, no one wants to look like a fool son! So we curl up in a ball, and protect our soft spots so, that no one can judge us. But it gets us nowhere fast! How can I be down about my comic writing career, when I've really hardly tried.

And its not like I don't have some resources, I am in correspondence with published writers, and have minor access to an editor, but I never approach any of them for advice due to a self imposed fear of rejection, or appearing as an annoyance.

When it comes to submitting to publishers that have a open submission policies, I'm apprehensive. I always tell myself that the project I'm working on isn't ready, and that its not the right time for me to be sending out that particular script, just lame excuses. But then I'm put into a self induced funk by my lack of progress! Its frankly pretty whack!

Thats part of the reason of this site, to get me out there. Its a baby step. I'm producing work that can be seen by the public, while allowing me to maintain some kind anonymity. I have on here, my blog, which is as far as ratings are concerned (I can see my sites traffic) the main event. Then their is 'Out of Beat' my gag comic strip which gets a fair bit of attention, and last is 'The Return' which has had a huge raise in ratings since I moved it to Thursday (I don't know why I thought Friday was a good day for it. It sucks for TV, so it sucks for web comics).

But there is a next step, I need to draw more attention to my site, I need to get it even further out there, and raise my traffic up by a dozen or so people. Its something I'm going to need to figure out. All I know is I will not ask for 'Shares', 'comments' or 'Likes', cause to me, if people wanted to do those things, they would. So I guess that's what I need to do, improve the site enough to get those 'shares', 'comments' and 'likes'. Maybe if I view more of Hobies experiences I'll find my answers...

Oh... That honky rejected his ideas for new window washing equipment and Hobie is in a fit of depression. He's worried his girlfriend wont love him anymore and hes running out of money... Groovy! He's going to use his inventions and become a Super hero... Actually Hobie thinks that becoming a super hero will take to long, so he becomes a super villain called the Prowler instead. Its kind of a rapey name, but nowhere near as bad as John Ramita's original name for him, 'the Stalker'. One of his weapons of choice is a knockout gas, I kid you not. He was originally going to be a man named 'Stalker' who wields a chloroform like gas as a weapon.

Hobie's plan is to steal from the Daily Bugle, make a big show of it and get a lot of attention. Then as Hobie Brown, he would return the stolen goods, playing it off as if he retrieved it from the Prowler after defeating him. Hopefully this media attention would give him the chance he needs to promote his inventions... There is very little logic tucked under that afro of his.

At least now I know what to do when the comic writing thing doesn't workout. I'll dawn a costume and become a super hero.

'The Coongar rises' anyone?

 
I read an article the other day on MSN news, about 'remakes'. It was called something like, 'Second time isn't the charm' or something? It was about remakes that failed at the box office compared to the originals (adjusted for inflation).

I'm usually against re-makes, with some very specific exceptions. Like I'm fine with continuously remaking comic book movies... since, well, they aren't really remakes, they're 'reboots.' And it kind of just fits the nature of the comic book beast, since comics are a constantly 'rebooting' and 'retconing' things all over the place. And there's also adaptations of cartoons, and books and video games, and it really depends on how 'pulpy' the property is. Every once in a while though, there is an adaption of a novel or comic, that transcends the original format, and becomes its own entity, and should not be tampered with. Easiest example... 'Gone with the Wind', you could remake 'Gone with the Wind', but you shouldn't.

To me, movies are an 'art', and in 'art' a photocopy of a painting isn't worth as much as the original. Follow me? Worth even less, is someone untalented attempting to copy a painting with there own brush and canvass.

Thats not what I'm really talking about though, I'm actually talking about, a slight pet peeve of mine. Which is how people criticize remakes, not the fact that people DO criticize them, but HOW they do it.
People love this line when talking about remakes, it was used in the MSN article that started this whole thing actually.

“There’s no original idea's left in Hollywood!”

Actually, yes there is. Theres lots in fact. Thousands of screen plays are written a year, and the mass majority of them are original concepts, they simply don't get made. You know why?... MONEY. MOVIES ARE MADE FOR MONEY.

We see a trailer for a movie, we go pay and see the movie. They make back the MILLIONS of dollars it took to make the movie, (and some), and they go on to make another movie. And the process begins again. The reason they do remakes, sequels and adaptations is, its a tested property, one that they can be sure they'll make their money back on.

They don't re-make movies that weren't a successes in the first place, they don't make sequels to movies that didn't make money, and they don't adapt books like 'The Hunger Games' because the story is good. The do it because they already have an audience. They don't need to win you over, that already have you, before the script is finished.

Movies cost an insane amount of money to make, out of all the forms of art, its the riskiest to create. You need a note book and pencil to write a poem, but it takes hundreds of people, with different skills, hundreds of hours, with lots of equipment, to create a film. (Granted you can do a film for cheaper, with less hands but were talking a Hollywood block buster).

If you're Joe Producer and you've given people your money to make a movie, don't you want it to have good odds of making your money back? If yes, you want a tested property, AKA: A remake, sequel or adaptation. Not something original, because original is risky.

Its very simple. There is plenty of idea's in Hollywood, they're just being repressed. Who is to blame for this?... Well... Everyone is. People like familiarity, we don't like strange or different, we want something we can peg on sight, now more then ever because... Well the cost of going and seeing a movie is so high! We want to know what we're paying for, no surprises. That's why the tell you who is involved in the making of the movie, its called name recognition, “From the Director of 'Two girls one cup' comes a film about love.”
If what we get is to different from what we expect, or like, we'll feel ripped off, like all those people that went to see 'Drive' thinking it'd be like 'Fast and the Furious'.

We'll see it, and hate it, then go on facebook, twitter or our blog and proclaim “Drive suxed! So boring! #Iwantgenricmovies.” You in that moment become a self published reviewer, and everyone on your feed is going to go, “Jimbo Johnson says 'Drive' sucked. I guess I wont see it.”


I know it seems stupid, and unlikely, but mass communication plays a huge part in the theater life of a movie. It used to be a that a shitty movie would last on the screen a few weeks before word of mouth spread of its shittyness. But now we can reach hundreds of people, who we would never even imagine talking too, by making a 6 second facebook comment.

We are speaking to Hollywood with our money. And what our money is saying, is we want another genericly painful romantic comedy staring Katherine Heigl. We want another Vin Diesal peck fest. We want another Super hero movie. We want the same'ol, same'ol. And Hollywood is listening.


Oh! Almost forgot. Congratulations at the Razzies Adam Sandler.

 

So hunger games has opened, and is a huge success among fans and general audience alike. To many its no surprise, the popularity of the book was a sure fired, tested property. They could have made a completely shit movie and called it ‘Hunger Games’ and it would have still made its dime.
Some people are surprised though. Since female lead ‘action movies’ don’t have the best box office records. Which brings me to today’s subject. Female action heroes.
I was originally going to do two list, one of excellently developed female heroes, and one listing the shitty side of the coin. But I realized that the majority of the strong female protagonist all have certain things in common, and so do the shitty ones. Which is why I’ve decided to simply voice my opinions, on what makes one good, and another shit.

First, I want to talk about suspension of disbelief.  When you see a talking dog in a movie and you go, “Pfff, Dog’s can’t talk.” Not only are you right about dogs not being able to talk, but your also not suspending your beliefs at all.
Movies are not reality, we all know this. But every film, book, and comic defines its own reality. NO, in reality dogs cannot talk. But in Narnia they can, since the reality of Narnia is animals talk. Now I could wax philosophical and talk about how we all define our own reality,  through beliefs and ideals, but that’s not what I’m getting at. What I’m getting at is, most people, (probably mostly men) don’t like female action heroes because they aren’t realistic.
The fact of the matter is, in reality, if Natalie Portman comes at Dolph Lundgren like a bro, and he cracks her one in the face, her neck would snap. BUT watching them throw down in a movie? Its very possible Portman can pull out a win, because it’s a movie.  
This is actually a double standard, since, news flash, men in action movies do unrealistic things all the time. Its honestly slightly misogynistic to say, that its more believable for a man to dodge an explosion then it is for a woman. Its fiction, there are NO limits, and its asinine as a viewer to be setting them.  
Anyway, allow me to get back on point. What makes a good female action hero, what makes a shitty female action hero.


THE GOOD

A quality female action hero, should be, you know… FEMALE. I’m going to hit you up with a little movie trivia. The roles in the film ‘Alien’ were never gender specific. They decided the characters genders during casting. That’s right Riply could have been a dude. And it shows in the first film, there is nothing Gender specific in ‘Alien’ as far as Riply is concerned, but by the sequel, she’s all woman, and all bad ass!
Her, Sarah Connor, Sue Richards (Aka: Invisible Woman) are all uniquely XX chromosome, because they all bring something to the table that no male action hero can… except for Arnold Schwarznegger… They’re all MOTHERS.  
The amount of ‘Fantastic Four’ I've read, is honestly limited. But everything I read depicts Sue Richards as a being a mama bear, with big ass fucking claws! In one comic, a brain washed Wolverine invades the Baxter building to kill the ‘FF’. And who is it that stops the hairy little killing machine? Not Reed! Not the Human Torch! Not the ever love’n blue eye’d Thing! But Sue!
Nice, polite, pretty and petite, she’d never kill… Unless her family is in danger, in which case she’ll put a bubble around your lungs and suffocate you.  Ouch!
These mother action heroes are AMAZING. Not because they are physically imposing, but because their motivation is so strong, and primal. Protect your young at any cost. Sarah Connor and Ellen Riply especially, since there is a transformation between films, from victim, to hero.
Stepping away from mothers, let’s talk about single lady characters. Like teenage Buffy Summers, Kitty Pryde, and bachelorette Black Widow. These characters aren’t mothers. But they are uniquely female, and exhibit famine attributes in their personality. They like typical girl things. They enjoy shopping, and going dancing. When Kitty Pryde and Buffy Summers were teenage heroes, they’d get crushes and experience mood swings, they were self conscious about their body and appearance. They were TEENAGE GIRLS. Fuck, Kitty Pryde was constantly indecisive about what here super hero name and costume would actually be, which screams teenage girl to me.
I’m not saying that we should enforce gender stereotypes with female action heroes. I’m just saying a female action hero should generally be unique to the gender. Otherwise you have what a I consider a shitty female action hero.  

THE BAD

Unique to the gender, is what makes a good female action hero. What makes a shitty female action hero is a woman, defined by her boobs. I’ve only seen two of the Resident Evil movies, but you perform a double mastectomy on Milla Jovovich , and shape her vagina into a cock, and her character hasn’t changed a bit.
A shitty female action hero, has a personality that may as well be a mans. She is a hard as nails, stone faced, bad ass. And NO there is nothing wrong with this archetype, its just boring, and kind of offensive to woman, since essentially they’re fan fair.
Typical action movies have your bad ass male lead, with a sexy female love interest. ‘Resident Evil’, ‘Aeon Flux’, ‘Tomb Raider’ cut corners by fusing these characters together. Their stories could play out the exact same if they were dudes. This actually goes both ways, since obviously male stories can play out the same with female leads. But when one in ten action movies, stars a woman, then why not make it worth it? Give the girls out there a respectable hero instead of a sexual vessel.
I also hate the wardrobe of shitty female action heroes. If its a sword and sorcery story, the female fighter is wearing chainmail on, and only on, her lady parts. Like a woman's breast a labia are their only vital organs.
Then their is female super heroes. How does showing off your mid drift help you fight crime? Is running in those heels make you faster or something? Does your thong dig in much?   
Even worse though, is this archetypical female action hero who is defined by the fact that she ISN’T a man. We see this character all the time. My first thought of this Eyown from ‘Lord of the Rings’. She’s as good a fighter as ANY man, but she can’t go to battle! She’s a girl! Actually what is her big line? You know at her triumph? Oh yeah “I AM NO MAN!”
God has that story arch run dry or what? “I’m just as good as a boy!”
“No you aren’t!”
Achieves X goal (becomes a warrior, joins the boys wrestling team, bowls a perfect game ect.)
“See!”
“You’re right! You’re our equal!”
The end.   
That story arch doesn’t need to die, I’m fine with it. But those female protagonist only claim to being a woman, is the fact that they aren’t a man... Which is retarded. A character needs more depth than  being defined by what they aren’t. Give them some substance for crying out loud. 


In the end, when trying to think of female action heroes I liked,  and ones I hated, I noticed how small the pool really is in general. But when you look at the movies coming out, you can see there is an upwards trend of ladies who kick ass. And for me, I’m interested in this, as long as the characters are of substance.
I have no opinion of the lead of ‘The Hunger Games’ since I haven’t seen the movie, or read the book. And I don’t really plan to. Not because it has a female at the helm, or because I’m attempting to step away from the popularity of it, but because I just don’t have an interest. The premise just doesn’t grab me. I’ll probably catch it later on, when it’s on DVD, but not right now.
Right now, I’m just happy to see that there is female action hero who can grab an audience’s, attention. Maybe when I finally watch it, I’ll be happy to see that she has some depth, and is uniquely female.   

 
Everyone has a favourite word, wither its the sound of it, or the definition, you love it. Its a word that you'll find a way to work into a conversations, a word you say instinctively, without a thought, its a default word.

Spending a lot of time writing, and speaking, I've come to love a few words myself. So I've gathered four of my favourite words, and their definitions to share with you today. So, in no particular order, my favourite words.


gnarl·y [nahr-lee]
adjective, gnarl·i·er, gnarl·i·est.

1.
gnarled.
2.
Slang . distasteful; distressing; offensive; gross: a comic noted for his gnarly humour.
3.
Cool. Good.

Clearly I'm a massive fan of the word gnarly, it is in the sites title after all. Just say the word? 'Gnar-ly' its strong at the start, but ends all soft with the 'ly'. Gnarly is a word that growing up in the early 90's resonated 'cool'. You know who was gnarly? Zachary Morris. You know who else? Michelangelo (Not the artist, the turtle... Though rumour has it, that the artist enjoyed gnarly stuff relating to my second favourite word on this list.)


sphinc·ter [sfingk-ter]
noun Anatomy .
a circular band of voluntary or involuntary muscle that encircles an orifice of the body or one of its hollow organs.

We all know what I mean when I say 'sphincter.' You know that I have a disgusting obsession with 'boners', and 'butt holes.' And there is a verity terms for the butt. Rusty waggon wheel, balloon knot, O' ring. But when you want to say 'ass hole' with a air of sophistication, when you want to talk adult like an adult. You use 'sphincter'. Some say 'anus' is in the same class as 'sphincter', those people are wrong
Anus is uttered all across the playground, and school yard. 'Anus' is immature. 'Sphincter' wears a turtle neck.


conch  [kongk, konch]
noun, plural conchs  [kongks] Show IPA, con·ches  [kon-chiz] Show IPA.

1.
the spiral shell of a gastropod, often used as a horn.
2.
any of various marine gastropods.
3.
the fabled shell trumpet of the Tritons.
4.
( often initial capital letter ) Slang: Sometimes Disparaging .
a.
a native or inhabitant of the Florida Keys.
b.
a Bahamian.
5.
Also, concha. Architecture . a smooth concave surface consisting of or resembling the interior of a semidome, as the surface of a vault, a trompe, or the head of a niche.

'Conch' to me sounds like a swear, or insult. Try this on for size; “Kim Kardashian has a dirty conch.”
“You're such a conch.” “I love me some ripe conch.”
It sounds dirty, but really isn't. For me it makes me think of another C word that is considered a sensitive swear. And thus, its perfect substitute.


on·o·mat·o·poe·ia [on-uh-mat-uh-pee-uh, ‐mah-tuh‐]
noun
1.
the formation of a word, as cuckoo, meow, honk,  or boom,  by imitation of a sound made by or associated with its referent.
2.
a word so formed.
3.
the use of imitative and naturally suggestive words for rhetorical, dramatic, or poetic effect.

KRASH! BANG! SPLUDGE! This site is a comic site. So clearly I love comics, and running side by side with comics is 'Onomatopoeia.' Not only is 'onomatopoeia' itself awesome to say, everything that falls under it, is too. KA-BOOM! SLAM! OOF! GOO! RAWR! That shit makes me smile.

And allow me to leave you with this.



 

(Warning, the following is a rant regarding a fictitious character, and what is considered very old news to comic fans. Within this rant is Spoilers to the following Daredevil stories, Born Again and Guardian Devil, beware.)

(P.s, Sorry about the length.) 

Fuck Karen Page.

I'm a big Daredevil fan. I have a framed Joe Quesada, Daredevil poster next to bedroom door. My greatest comic book buy is, and probably always will be, Frank Miller's Daredevil Omnibus. He's possibly my favourite super hero. This post isn't about the man without fear though. Its about a lady named Karen Page.

Karen Page is to Daredevil, what Louis Lane is to Superman. She loved Daredevil, and Matt Murdock. When she learned they were one in the same they had a relationship that flourished. Until Karen decided to move up in life, and go from being a Law Office Secretary to being a big time actress in California.

A few years later we re-visit Karen, and shes changed a lot. She goes from the love of Daredevil's life, to being a stupid fucking bitch. She becomes a whore. And that's not a insult to Karen, that's a descriptive. She gets hooked on heroin, and starts starring in porn flicks.
We're talking those grainy, gross porn's, where you feel uncomfortably watching them cause they're so sleezy. Where the guy is ten times more vocal then the girl, and sheets in the bed are really unclean, and pillows have no cases. At least that's how I imagined them... I never gave it much thought.

One day Karen is dying for some Mexican Brown, and for a shot of the stuff she offers up on thing she has that's worth something. The secret Identity of Daredevil. Now, I know drug addicts aren't the most reasonable of people. And in the end she does try to make it right again. But the journey to that point... I think should be questioned.

First off, the info about Matt climes the ladder to the King Pin of crime. Daredevils nemesis. And as soon it gets to him, he has every step of that ladder killed. Every guy this information went through to get to Wilson Fisk is murdered. Granted these are bad men, but if we go by Daredevils personal code, he does not kill, he does not believe murder is justice, its pretty much the wrongest thing you can do.

So lets go by Kevin Bacon's, six degrees of separation. And assume that on its way to Wilson Fisk's hands it went through six peoples hands. So the death toll of Karen Page's stupid, fucking, flappy lips starts off at six.

KILLED BY KAREN PAGE IN ABILITY TO KEEP A SECRET:
6

Karen is also on the King Pin's hit list and is being hunted. She attempts to call Daredevil, and I originally believed it was to warn him, but after re-reading it, I believe its because he can protect her. She's literally, sold the guy out, then has the fucking gull to call him to save her ass? What a stupid bitch.

Karen then proceeds to rob a blind man, while searching for a man she can trade her body to for a ride across the Mexican Border, and some good old “Harry Jones.” This man then proceeds to kill two trigger men sent to kill her. Now, I'd call this self defense, but... she did kind of put her self in their sights so.


KILLED BY KAREN PAGE IN ABILITY TO KEEP A SECRET:
6 + 2 = 8.

Meanwhile, back in New York, Daredevil is half dead, and has been nearly driven insane by the King Pin. Apart of the King Pins plan involved ruining Matt Murdocks career, so a honest, good cop. Is bribed with medical care for his dying son, to say he witnessed Murdock paying off a witness. This cop is later murdered after threatening to expose the conspiracy against Matt Murdock. Also involved are investigative reporter Ben Urich and his wife. Who are both nearly killed.

KILLED BY KAREN PAGE IN ABILITY TO KEEP A SECRET:
8 + 1.5 =9.5

I'm going to try and stream line this. Karen Page ditches her escort (the guy she fucked all the way from Mexico to New York) and he takes its a little hard and kills two cops, then he himself is killed

KILLED BY KAREN PAGE IN ABILITY TO KEEP A SECRET:
9.5 + 3= 12.5

In another attempt to cover up his involvement, the King Pin has a few more people assassinated, three successfully. One of which the timid Ben Urich is forced to kill, causing some serious emotional scaring I'm sure.

KILLED BY KAREN PAGE IN ABILITY TO KEEP A SECRET:
12.5 + 4 = 16.5

The King Pin also hires a psychopathic super soldier to kill Daredevil. A news paper later reads “Dozens Dead.” So lets go with, two dozen. So twenty-four people dead there...

KILLED BY KAREN PAGE IN ABILITY TO KEEP A SECRET:
16.5 + 24 = 40.5

And, in a bid to save lives, Daredevil is forced to take a life himself, breaking his own code.

KILLED BY KAREN PAGE IN ABILITY TO KEEP A SECRET:
40.5 + 1 = 41.5


After she kicks her habit, and gets her life on track she leaves Matt for a new job on the West Coast. She then finds out that she has contracted HIV. Karma for the years of swapping dirty needles and dirtier dicks. As well as justice for all the lives she ruined for being a dumb bitch.

BUT THEN! In a contrived master plan against Daredevil, she is told a baby is responsible for her having AID's, and that if she kills the baby she'd be cured. So she begins to plot the murder of a newborn.

Daredevil too, has contemplated the murder of, and even attempted to murder of this same “evil” baby. But it is revealed that he is under the influence of a hallucinogen, which clouds his judgement and forces him to hate the baby irrationally. Not Karen though, she was fueled by cuntyness. She literally wanted to kill the baby based purely on the suggestion of it.

Shes a bitch of the highest degree. Shes a selfish whore, and when she finally is killed by Bullseye, all I can think is; YES! Finally she gets what she deserves! A metal rod through the fucking heart! The fucking pain shes caused Matt is unending though, the repercussions of her giving up his name to the King Pin never really stopped.

Even beyond that, shes fucking whore who teased Matt with her slutty demeanour. Shes that girlfriend that is poison! That one you see again and again just toying with your best friends heart. That girl that will call you when the chips are down, but forget you as soon as the sun is shining. She is a fucking succubus. And I'm happy shes dead.

 

Coinciding with the premier of "THE RETURN" I've decided to write a short blog post explaining something that will become apparent, as soon as you set eyes on the return. 

I am not an artist. I am a competent doodler. This is something I've struggled with most of my life. I've attempted to do art, I've tried to bring aspects of art into my doodling... But the sophistication of it all, alludes me to this day.

I have however come to terms with my doodling. I no longer fight the doodles, I embrace my doodles. Which is what everyone who puts a pencil to paper should do. Don't pretend you're Jack Kirby, don't attempt to immolate Jim Lee, just accept your style and strengthen it. Not saying don't learn from your favorite artist, I'm just saying let yourself be reflected in what you create.

For years when I was younger, going back to the 90's, I attempted to immolate the wispy, jagged lines of Todd McFarlane, later on, it was the angular art of Akira Toriyama (Yes the creator of Dragon Ball). In doing this, I learned a great deal. My art was never exactly 'right' though. It always had a strange look to it I found. And I never really liked it.

So I let go of my inspiration, and I just doodled. And I can still see piece's of other artist in my work, but now its truly mine. Its simple, its not overly complex, or even aw inspiring. You will not look at anything drawn by me and have your mind blown. But! you'll understand what you're looking at, you'll understand whats happening, all because I am a competent doodler. 
 
Bill Wright is name I learned just this afternoon. I've never met Bill, yet I find myself envying him, and his estate, a great deal.

Bill was a comic collector, like many of us. From what I know, he enjoyed reading Superman and Batman. And like most comic collectors he tried to keep his books in the highest grade condition he could. Treating them with a great deal of care.

His collection was moderately sized, only 345 single issues. But amongst those issues were, Action Comics #1, and Detective Comics #27. Anyone who knows even the tiniest bit about comics know what those two issues are. In case you're not in the know, I'll fill you in.

Action Comics #1 is the first appearance Superman, Detective #27 is the first of Batman. These comics have cover price of a dime. Though they've each sold, for over a million bucks!... Inflation say what?

Bill's great nephews have inherited his collection of golden age comics, and have sold it all at a price of 3 million dollars.

The money isn't the story here though. Not to me at least. To me the story is the journey of those books. Bill would have been ten when he bought Action Comics #1, and eleven when he bought Detective #27. I got my first comic's around that age as well, I still have them actually. You know what they look like? Shit. Covers are torn off, pages crumpled, my dad used one as coaster for his beer once. Bill kept his in great condition though... Even through WWII when many comic books were pulped up for the war effort by mothers with no respect for the funny pages. That's right, these books survived, not only a child's hands, but a fucking world war!

You're probably thinking, "Of course he took care of them, they're worth a fortune now!" Bill didn't know that though. The idea that comics would be worth something some day didn't occur to people until much later, and its wasn't exploited until even later by mass production of issue #1's and variant covers.

No, Bill didn't take care of those comics and hold onto them until he died because he thought, "Some day these will be wroth something" He did it because he loved them. I'm kind of saddened by the fact that his family sold his collection. I mean I GET it, its a lot of money. But those comics probably had some great sentimental value, worth more then the millions they sold for, and definitely more then the 10cents it originally went for.

Some interesting facts about Action Comics #1. The actor Nicholas Cage had copy stolen from him, then later rediscovered in abandoned storage locker. Possibly during an episode of Storage Wars.

Even more interesting. The Canadian Government owns their own copy of Action Comics #1 protected in our National Library.



Fusing those two interesting facts together. I kind of want Nick Cage to make a National Treasure 3 where he has to steal Action Comics #1 from the Canadian Government.

Anyway, I'll leave you with this: