Saturday, September 24, 2011

75 Years of Jim Henson

Jim Henson was born 75 years ago today. Not a day goes by without something Muppet-related in my life. I don’t think any entertainer, any innovator, has had a larger hand in shaping my life and my capacity for imagination and my compassion than Jim Henson.


"The most sophisticated people I know - inside they are all children." Keep believing, keep pretending.

I miss you, Mr. Henson.

(By the way, check out today's Google Doodle!)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Yet More New DC Comics

You all know how I feel about the necessity and success of the reboot so far. Here are my thoughts on what I read this week.


THE GOOD:

Nothing really jumped out at me this week as being something I really enjoyed and really want to keep reading. I don't think it's going to get better for me than last week's Demon Knights.

I did sort of enjoy Green Lantern Corps. Most of the experience I have with the GL universe comes from the late 1960s, so I'm surprised at how violent all of the Lantern comics have been. I mean, I guess I understand some of it, since they're basically cops in space and this sort of bloody sci-fi peril is supposed to up the stakes or whatever, but seriously, there's a lot of carnage on display. It's not quite the out-and-out sadism of Detective Comics #1, but it's a lot of blood.

I did like seeing Guy Gardner attempt to balance out a normal life on Earth with being a Lantern. John Stewart less so; I don't have a lot of experience with John as a character, but he seems a tad fastidious. I think I'll keep reading this one, since I'm going to keep reading Green Lantern, and I've been enjoying the whole idea of it. I feel like I'm done with the worlds of Batman and Superman now, so why not Green Lantern for a while?

DC Universe Presents was okay. It did a good job as far as rebooting Deadman; it introduced the character and premise quickly, told you that Boston Brand had a history, and then implied that it's not essential for you to know any of that history in order to keep up with the story. I may or may not keep reading it. I've never been that into Deadman, and there's a lot of angst here.

THE BAD:

I dug Scott Lobdell's Superboy last week, so I gave his Red Hood and the Outlaws a shot. It's shit. It's just shit. It reads like Burn Notice fan fiction starring Deadpool. I especially don't like the hard, uncaring edge they've given Starfire. Just doesn't work for me. Not at all.

I have zero experience with the new Blue Beetle character, except what I've seen on the Batman: The Brave and the Bold cartoon, so I can't say if Blue Beetle was a good reboot or not. Maybe calling it bad isn't quite accurate; it at least told you everything you needed to know about the premise right off, but the rest played like Ultimate Spider-Man with racist stereotypes. I don't see myself reading more. I miss Ted Kord.

Legion of Super-Heroes #1 was impossible to slice through. I liked Mark Waid's run five or six years ago. Nightwing #1 was boring. And, just like Batman and Robin, seems to have no idea what's Batman continuity now and what isn't. So, again, Dick being Batman and that "Return of Bruce Wayne" (aka terrible excuse for a Robert E. Howard pastiche) happened? Hey, sorry, but it's DC's fault I have to ask these questions; making such a big deal about continuity only forces you to notice the mistakes and discrepancies. Deal with it, Didio.

Supergirl was a real disappointment. Two pages into it, I was thinking this is something like the sixth or seventh origin of Supergirl, and I just didn't care. The whole thing is basically one scene, something a real creative team should've been able to tackle in two pages. It took me about 44 seconds to read it. A waste of paper.

THE DELAYED:

Currently, Batman #1 is unavailable to me. Maybe I can get it next week. I don't have any hopes for it, given my disdain for all of the Bat books so far, but I'll check it out.

THE UNREAD:

I skipped Birds of Prey because I don't care, Captain Atom because I don't care, and Catwoman because I don't care. Eh. I saw the last couple of pages from Catwoman of Batman and Catwoman fucking on Tumblr, and I'm kind of glad I didn't take the time to read it.

AND THE WTF:

Okay, everyone is cheering on Wonder Woman #1 like it won the Special Olympics or something. My guess is because it's just so different from what you expect and have gotten from Wonder Woman in the past. Also because it's so derivative of Neil Gaiman's Sandman. I honestly can't decide if I like it or not. I want to, but it's a real mess. On the good side, it's very firmly rooted in Greek mythology, so when you step into it, it already feels like there's a whole universe to it that's been really imagined. It has an atmosphere because of it. But on the bad side, it's just a terrible first issue. Once again, it assumes you're familiar with Wonder Woman and who she is, and makes no attempt to tell you what she does or why she's special. It's like a story with no beginning; it starts in the middle somewhere and doesn't stop for you to catch up. It's violent as hell (of course, like the entire nu-niverse is), and the art... was this a rush job? Because I know Cliff Chiang is a better artist than this. This one I'll give a few issues, because I'm curious what Brian Azarello is trying to say (if anything) or at least want to figure out what drugs he's taking. Or maybe I'll wait and see if the Corinthian or Merv Pumpkinhead show up, or something. I have a feeling this is going to be something truly awful.

Seriously, how hard is it to write Wonder Woman?

Happy Birthday, Joan!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

An Open Letter

Dear People Who Called Me a Whiny Asshole Who Wanted a Free Lunch for Being Upset About Netflix, But Are Today Whining About the New Facebook Layout,


Fuck you, crybabies.

Drunk on your self-righteous hypocrite tears,

SamuraiFrog

Resist, Brother!

Fall Banner 2011

Instead of doing a Halloween banner, I've decided to just do a fall banner with Veronica. I'm enjoying the whole Veronica theme here on Electronic Cerebrectomy. And since Becca did that lettering job for me, well, here it is. I dig it the most. It's the biggest banner I've ever had, but hey, it's Ronnie!

Film Week

A review of the film I saw this week.


CARRY ON SERGEANT (1958)
The first in the series of Carry On films, and the first that I've ever actually seen. I really enjoyed the heck out of it! It doesn't feel incredibly fresh to me after years of seeing its antecedents and rip-offs, but it feels more sincere than a lot of those. I dug William Hartnell as Sgt. Grimshawe, the serious drill sergeant who wants to end his military career by training the year's best platoon. And, of course, he gets the worst misfits in the British army. Amazingly, zero of this grated on my nerves. I loved it. I can't wait to see more of these. ***1/2 stars.

TV Reportish

Man, I miss Hellcats this season.


:: I watched 2 Broke Girls. It was... okayish. But it has Kat Dennings, so I'll keep watching. Shallow? Who gives a shit? It's not like I'm expecting quality from TV these days, especially on CBS.

:: Nothing to say about the Hell's Kitchen finale. Zero drama, but at least Elise wasn't in the final two.

:: I recorded The Playboy Club on the TiVo, but I haven't watched it yet. I'm honestly not sure if I'm going to. It got terrible reviews, and you could tell just from the promos last May that it was going to be awful. As much as I like Amber Heard, I'm not sure it's a watch-a-terrible-TV-show-just-because-she's-on-it-even-if-she's-wearing-a-Bunny-suit kind of like.

Actually, I did once. I watched an episode of Criminal Minds recently because she was on it. Have you ever watched Criminal Minds? It makes me want to take back everything I ever said about Law & Order: SVU being vapid and ridiculous. Criminal Minds makes SVU look like Joseph Wambaugh wrote it.

:: I'm glad How I Met Your Mother is back, and pleased that we're going to go back to Barney and Robin, but... Victoria? Ugh.

:: So, so, so glad Castle is back on.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

DADT Is Dead; Now Let's Grow Up on Civil Rights

As of today, the great Don't Ask, Don't Tell compromise is repealed. It's not the end of the road for LGBT acceptance in the military, of course--read this editorial here for an idea of what gay servicemembers have ahead of them and how they should be combating prejudice--but a great disservice to human dignity has been cast aside. In the endless struggle to have all people recognized as people, and the inexplicable-in-the-21st-Century need to fight against legislated prejudice.

It's sad that even as one piece of legislation against difference dies, another blossoms. In North Carolina, the state senate has voted in favor of banning gay marriage through a constitutional amendment. There's an excellent post I recommend right here.

This period in American history is a period I'm going to remember for useless class warfare and enshrined ignorance. As I keep saying, I'm not rooting for the survival of humanity right now. There are glimmers of hope, though. LGBT men and women will now be able to serve openly in the military if they choose to. Now they have to fight long-standing prejudices by being willing to talk and being willing to show that there's nothing different about them. I hope this clears the stage for a larger, more adult discussion about gay civil rights. I have hope that America can grow the fuck up and stop treating people like second class citizens.

I don't always, but I do today.

Retro Muppet Concert Posters

Michael De Pippo has created five amazingly awesome retro-style concert posters for Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem. The Dr. Teeth poster is my favorite, but they're all fantastic. What I wouldn't give to buy a set of these! Head on over to his site to check out all five of them.


Thanks so much Splotchy for the heads-up on this!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Song of the Week: "Positively 4th St."

My favorite Dylan song, which makes it one of my favorite ever. I haven't had Bob on the Song of the Week since 2008, so it's about time. And it's a good song about not giving a damn, which I really don't right now. Enjoy.

The Most Adorable Doctor

[via]

Sunday Hottie 346

DYLAN RYDER

There Are No Words