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“Through the Eyes of a Fan”: How Being a Fanboy Changes One’s Outlook Both In and Outside the World of Comics

I am not pessimist. Let me make that very clear before I begin this exposition. I am not some kind of troll who sits behind a computer screen, ready to pounce on the latest superhero… [more]

Jessica Jones and Netflix’s New Storytelling

SPOILER WARNING Jessica Jones has a lot going on. It’s about trauma, PTSD, rape, and domestic abuse. (Oh, and superheroes, and Hell’s Kitchen, and the Marvel cinematic universe MCU). The fact is that Jessica Jones… [more]

A Problematic Trailer for a Problematic Film: BvS

It’s a dangerous game to review a trailer, or draw inferences from one. I’ve done it here before and made some (probably) wrong assumptions about a film, as well as some (probably) right ones. (I… [more]

Samuel Fuller’s Fraught Release: White Dog

The American film White Dog was finished in 1981. It was released in Europe in 1982. It wasn’t released in America until 2008, when Criterion released the film on DVD. You can probably tell by… [more]

Superheroes: The American Mythology Part I

Beginning in 1938, two simple creators will develop an entire genre of entertainment that will change the world. The humble beginnings of superheroes as pure heroes to guide America through the Great Depression. [more]

Sifting Through the Ashes: Analyzing Hellblazer, Part 38

Issue #47-48 “The Pub Where I Was Born” & “Love Kills” Writer: Garth Ennis; Pencils: Will Simpson, Mike Hoffman; Inker: Stan Woch; Colors: Tom Ziuko; Letters: Gaspar Saladino; Cover: Tom Canty; Being that Hellblazer is… [more]

Plutona #3: Want To Be A Superhero?

The Roman Empire had nothing on groups of kids when it comes to conspiracy, collusion, forming alliances and keeping secrets. That’s one of the great truths about young people that Jeff Lemire and Emi Lenox… [more]

The Basic Competency of Spotlight

Spotlight is a fairly derivative film in a lot of ways. The movie, which deals with The Boston Globe’s investigation into the systemic sexual misconduct of the Catholic Church, owes an arm and a leg… [more]

Eco-Horror: Energy Crises, Pollution, & the End of Humanity

The eco-horror genre of films may now have a proper name, but it’s been around for a long time. Movie goers have been flocking to theaters to see the explosive battle between man and nature… [more]

Some Short Thoughts on Recent Theatrical Releases

As you may or may not have noticed I’ve been falling rather dramatically behind on reviews this past month or so. All I can say to excuse it is that I’ve been busy and I’m… [more]

Smorgasbord #31: The Mad Machinations of Mr. Miller

Tom and Shawn talk Hollywood as a new Crow movie is brought up, Captain America: Civil War gets its first trailer, and Iron Fist becomes a Schrodinger-like phenomenon. In actual comics talk, Frank Miller promises more Dark Knight… [more]

Supergirl: Not the Feminist Superhero People Want

I admit to never knowing, or caring to know, much about Supergirl. While I can talk pretty confidently about the story arcs and history of Batman or Superman or Wonder Woman or even to a… [more]

Spectre: Losing to the Times

I didn’t come in with high expectations for this film, which might be an odd thing to say considering that I really enjoyed Skyfall. You know Skyfall is a good film when it turns into… [more]

Sifting Through the Ashes: Analyzing Hellblazer, Part 37

Issue #46 “Falling into Hell” Writer: Garth Ennis; Pencils: Will Simpson; Inker: Mark Pennington, Mark McKenna, Kim DeMulder, Stan Woch; Colors: Tom Ziuko; Letters: Gaspar Saladino; Cover: Tom Canty; As with any ongoing comic series,… [more]

Invisible Republic #7: You Can’t Leave

“I’ve been involved in several cults, both as a leader and a follower. You have more fun as a follower, but you make more money as a leader.” -Creed Bratton We have to start the… [more]

Portraits In Alienated British Youth Circa 1989-90, Part Sixteen : Meet Dave

So, who’s this “Dave” guy you heard mentioned in our last segment here, anyway? Yeah, okay, you may have gathered that he’s the central figure in John Smith and Sean Phillips’ Straitgate, but beyond that,… [more]

Prometheus Eternal: New Reflections on a Classic Myth

Greek mythology is, it almost goes without saying, full of characters who incur the wrath of more powerful gods by violating their arbitrary rules. Most of those violations amount to stepping outside of the proverbial… [more]

Portraits In Alienated British Youth Circa 1989-90, Part Fifteen : Les Enfants Terrible

Debuting in the pages of the well-regarded (and, at least by some of us, much-missed) British comics anthology series Crisis — specifically in issue number 50, cover-dated September, 1990 — John Smith and Sean Phillips’… [more]

Sorting Through Tim Burton’s Promising Wreckage: The Death of Superman Lives: What Happened?

We have all probably heard, even if just in passing, of the great lost Superman film of the 1990s, but probably only rumours of goofy costumes and questionable casting. The recent independent documentary The Death… [more]

Portraits in Alienated British Youth Circa 1989-90, Part Fourteen : I Used To Think That The Day Would Never Come —

And you, dear reader, could be forgiven, what with the uber-sporadic nature of these posts in recent months (sue me, I’ve been busy), that the day would never come when yours truly would finally get… [more]

Sifting Through the Ashes: Analyzing Hellblazer, Part 36

Issue #45 “The Sting” Writer: Garth Ennis; Pencils: Will Simpson; Inker: Tom Sutton; Colors: Tom Ziuko; Letters: Gaspar Saladino; Cover: Tom Canty; In the comic medium, every character or series has moments that become paramount… [more]

Smorgasbord #30.1: Bunns of Steel

With Tom running amok in England, Shawn invites local Boy Wonder Hagai Palevsky to discuss the latest developments in comics, including Cullen Bunn’s brush with fandom drama, the Means-Shannon Mishap, a most unwelcome return at… [more]

Feminism on the Fury Road: Imperfect Tropes in Mad Max

As part of my continuing effort to catch up with all the summer movies I missed (my home theatre is more comfortable, equal in quality and a whole lot cheaper than going to a theatre,… [more]

The Flashback Paradox: How Comic Book Television Deals with Remembrance of Things Past

In the eight decades or so of American comic books, finding obscure things in dark corners to dust off and reinvent has become an industry unto itself. Indeed, one of the first known printed uses… [more]

Another Day, Another Dollar: Harvey Pekar’s Last American Splendor

For the last few years of Harvey Pekar’s life, he was on a creative roll. His American Splendor comic had never really gone away, but in the 1990s and early 2000s, Pekar was focusing more… [more]