June 13, 2010

ABC Podcast, Episode #97 and visual aids

This episode of Awesomed By Comics is brought to you by, well, it's not a Hat through the Centuries, I'll tell you that much. We get really into the goings on in Generation Lost/Booster Gold, sign on with Marvel's teen invasion in Avengers Academy and Young Allies, and okay Batman, whatever you say. Secret Six, Unwritten and Echo continue their brilliance, and Thor gets borked. Note that we'll be on vacation next week but still plan to do a show--it just may be a day or so delayed. Also note that this recap is not very funny, but I had a little unplanned hospitalization this week so I appreciate your understanding.

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Cover(s) of the Week

Evie's pick, from Heralds #2, cover by Jelena Djurdjevic:

Aaron's pick, from Justice League: Generation Lost #3, cover by Tony Harris:

Panel(s) of the Week

Aaron's pick, from S.H.I.E.L.D. #2 by Jonathan Hickman and Dustin Weaver:

Evie's picks, from Prince of Power #2 by Greg Pak, Fred Van Lente and Reilly Brown:

And from Secret Six #22 by Gail Simone and J. Calafiore:


Wrye said...

Oh boy! Overcoming the odds to bring us a new ABCP! Thanks, you guys. I'm gonna enjoy this immensely. With no new Bugles or WRA's for a while, it's been lean listening this past couple weeks...

Sandy said...

I hope you are recovering well, Evie. Enjoy your vacation!

bird said...

i was suprised to see the new show for this week. you should say "no show next week" every week. then people will apperciate you more.

Eyz said...

Is that...a female Etrigan in that last panel?!? °__O
Where did thins character come from?! (Yes, I know, Secret Six, but where it's from, plotwise)

Evie said...

Eyz: Black Alice can absorb/borrow the powers of other magical entities... she steals Jason Blood's to track Catman (or to do something, I can't remember exactly), and basically turns into Etrigan.

Unknown said...

They're not zeros! They're Ø, from the Norwegian alphabet. I'd guess it's supposed to be a Swedish Chef reference, given the usual prevalence of puns in the sound effects of that comic. Lots of Ikea references in this one.

The Ø doesn't exist in Swedish, of course, but still funny.

Zebtron A. Rama said...

You read Avengers Academy!? How did they manage that guy that can get Dinosaur parts as his powers (Reptyl I believe) I read the preview thing that was in the Age of Heroes mini and could,'t believe it was for real.

I share the SHIELD love though. Good show.

Ethan Hoddes said...

I would like to point out that Alice's female Etrigan form is called Estrogan, which is awesome.

Also, I'm pretty sure Thor's confirmation hearing would be pretty rough, what with the paganism, the auto-genocide/reverse-genocide, questionable status of his medical license (can someone who doesn't exist legally practice medicine? If Odin created Donald Blake from nothing, then where did he go to med school?) Actually, I'd like to see a miniseries of confirmation hearings for the marvel characters appointed to major posts, hopefully starting with the gong-show that Norman Osborne's hearings must have been (though I think that if he goes through the same path as Homeland Security then it would be Lieberman's committee, which would explain it.)

Dylan said...

Dan Brown? Give the man a little credit. Umberto Eco or, failing that, Robert Anton Wilson, at least.

Jared said...

As for other recommendations for superhero comics to read for that e-mailer--Batgirl's one you guys mentioned that's pretty good, character driven stuff. I'd also say that Batman & Robin has that as well, besides all the action stuff, and is basically Damian rising up to become a hero. I'd also say to try Captain America, either starting #1 of Brubaker's run and working your way up, or this week's #606.

I also enjoyed Generation Lost, and after seeing pages of the newest issue, I'm probably going start picking up Booster Gold.

I have to say--I haven't read all of the Batman comics in existence, but I was still perfectly able to understand Batman #700; and I have to say that I felt it was very straight-forward, and actually did dumb itself down at one point to make sure the point was understood. I'm not trying to insult your intelligence or anything, but I do find some people just read the name "Morrison" at this point, assume they will never understand, and just plow through and create a self-fulfilling prophesy about it. I would really like to hear what exactly you guys didn't understand, because I'm fairly certain that I could explain it with the issue itself.

Young Allies was a book that I was curious about--if only because the villain team-name was the Bastards. Might give the next issue a shot, then.

I do find it odd that you guys loved S.H.I.E.L.D., when I thought it didn't do the high concept stuff anywhere near as well as, say, Batman #700. 700 had a statement and a huge canvas to tell a story in, whereas S.H.I.E.L.D #2, as a single issue, felt more like someone mixing words like "human" and "experience" and "evolve" around into something that sounds interesting, but doesn't really say anything. I'm sure it'll read a lot better and make more sense as a collection, but in singles, the only thing I can say for certain is that it's got PRETTY art.

I also LOVED Secret Six this week.

So yeah, good episode, guys. :)

battlecat said...

Reading Nemesis makes me feel like I'm suddenly trapped in the brain of one of the grumpy people who couldn't sit back and enjoy All Star Batman & Robin. Bats was ridiculous, crude and fun. Nemesis is ridiculous, crude and EXCRUCIATING. I could almost believe it was written by that Not Mark Millar guy from Twitter as a parody, but that sounds like it would be more fun.

Ethan Hoddes said...

Since I'm Canadian, I might as well also chime in and say that Evie's second pronunciation of Riel "Ree-el" is the correct one.

Anonymous said...

Since I'm also Canadian, I might as well also also chime in and say that it's Lou-ee, not Lou-iss :)

aaron said...

Jared - I will totally cop to about half of that. The problem isn't Morrison, whose other work I enjoy immensely. The problem is Morrison + mainstream DCU. (Earth One, or whatever.) So I am totally going into everything he writes in the mainstream DC universe, expecting to need annotations to truly understand what he's doing. (And yes, the bloggers who provide said annotations are part of the problem.) What I got from this issue was "Batmen, whoever they may be, will always have to deal with the Joker's Jokebook causing problems, and will never figure out something about that Professor." However, I will absolutely acknowledge that there is about a 95% chance that I missed something much more important, so I would absolutely love for someone to tell me what the conclusion of this story was, so that I can go back, re-read it, and maybe get my $5 worth this time. :)

And since I've been to Canada, I might as well say that you should go look at this picture of a beaver.


Mark Cook said...

Batman totally knows the deal with the professor - Dick figures it out, and Damian sees it happen: present day professor takes shot future professor and sticks him in the locked room via time travel, then calls the cops for Bruce's section. The Joker's jokebook is just a macguffin - Damian leaves it to burn. "What can we beat but never defeat?" is answered by the title of the story, "Time and the Batman."

I love Morrison's Batman, but I didn't think 700 was that good, and I don't think that going back to re-read it will get you your $5 worth. (Hopefully Superman 700 and Wonder Woman 600 are better packages, and I'm definitely flipping through those in the store to make sure there aren't 8 pages of inventory covers in there.)

I have to say, I thought the five main artists did really good work on Batman 700 - I don't think this not working is the art's fault in the least.

Love the podcast; have an excellent trip!

Anonymous said...

I'm normally someone who loves Morrison's DCU output (like Batman & Robin and Final Crisis), but #700 did nothing for me. It probably started with the fact that I got a misprinted copy, so I had no Quitely pages, but even when I got to read the actual issue, it wasn't that great. Tony Daniel's art was really lackluster this issue and the issue felt like it had no weight. It is worth noting, as Mark mentioned, that the "end" of the story is actually in the middle present section. Dick figures out what happened. Still, it was very unsatisfactory.

That serves as a segue to answering Simon's questions of superhero comics to read. I'd have to suggest Morrison and Quitely's All Star Superman, since it has absolutely no continuity. I'd also throw in Incredible Hercules and JMS' run on Thor. (I'd suggest starting with the Love and War collection of Herc since it does not tie in to any crossover. http://tiny.cc/t2ib6)

As for Secret Six, I think it's worth noting that you need to go back further than the current ongoing. I think there was a mini and a Simone-penned Villians United series. When I got the first Secret Six trade, I was very confused and disoriented for the first 2 issues, and I think that would have been fixed by reading the other trades.

Evie said...

I actually hadn't read any of the previous Secret Six runs, and I've been fine--but I'm kind of used to jumping in on stuff that I'm less familiar with.

And yes, how on earth could I forget Hercules, thanks!

Ethan Hoddes said...

The full pre-ongoing Secret Six reading list is:

1) Villains United
2) the miniseries (collected as "Secret Six: Six Degrees of Devastation"
3) The Birds of Prey arc featuring the Six (collected as "Birds of Prey: Dead of Winter"). this has the beginning of Catman's attraction to the Huntress, which is referenced in the first issue of the ongoing.

That still leaves you with Knockout dying off-panel, but I don't think that was really a big story, though it was also in Birds of Prey I think.

Oh, and something I'd been meaning to mention for a while, I think that you guys kind of underestimate how much Bane's backstory is incorporated into the character in the Secret Six. I get the impression that both of you come at Batman mainly through the animated series. That was generally excellent, but the series version of Bane was extremely shallow, and the film version even more so. Though Knightfall wasn't a masterwork, Bane was never intended to be a one-dimensional brute (though what inspired them to stick his background on a bodybuilder in a luchadore mask, I'll never know). His reaction to the megaprison in the "The Pit" story is definitely based on his childhood, and I think that his relationship with Scandal and Alice is very much informed by place of his own father in his backstory. The whole recovering adict thing was even introduced in the aftermath of Knightfall. (Though, regarding Evie's comments on iFanboy, the original Bane definitely did not "respect women", unless by "respect" you mean "kill", and by "women" you mean "hookers").

Catman, on the other hand, is I think a complete break from every version of the character.

Quinton Peeples said...

Uck, sorry. I love the podcast, but have found the love of SHIELD to be confusing. Maybe it's just me and Hickman. I feel like he's stealing my lunch money. I know I'm supposed to admire shit like "Look! I inserted a text page here!" but, honestly, it's a rip-off. It's not revolutionary if it doesn't work. And that rant that began the last FF issue? Save it for the blog, twitter, whatever - that forum is free. I paid money for Adventure! Thrills! Escapism! Not barely veiled and, frankly, weak commentary. SHIELD was a narrative mess, as was Batman 700. I've said it before, but it bears repeating - the higher-ups at the big two need to stop inventing new titles for their business cards and promoting each other, and start editing the damn books. Kick some scripts back to the writers and say "try again" and return some art pages with a sticky note that says "I have no idea what is happening on this page."

And, so that I can leave on a positive note - 'cuz that's the kind of guy I am - a recommend for Simon - the MADMAN series at Image. Because it's fun and defies any attempt at continuity.

Eric Lyden said...

A little late, but I only got to listen yesterday. A perfect super hero comic for the guy who e mailed would be ASTRO CITY. Not the most recent series because that was over long and under good, but if you can start from the first trade then you're in for a treat. maybe it falls into the trap of being the kind of thing you can only love if you already love super hero comics, but I don't think so.

Also, if he can find the original SQUADRON SUPREME trade for cheap that'd be worth checking out though it's a bit dated in terms of style.