Saturday, January 31, 2009

Reading is FUN!!!

Quick shout out to fellow blogger SubZero, who was nice enough to exchange links with us and give us a writeup on his blog, Tales From The Kryptonian. He's a longtime comic book fan and he lives in Germany, so he has some interesting insights from that perspective. He's got a cool setup right now where the more important and popular posts are linked for the convenience of new readers, so this is the perfect time to check it out. I've been digging through the archives myself, and discovered our blogs have something in common...

Ah, the great uniter. So yeah, you're gonna want to check that out.

Well, our damn PS3 is on the fritz and I rented Nick And Norah's Infinite Playlist on Blu-Ray, so we won't be able to watch that until tomorrow night when I switch it out for two rocks to bang together like a goddam, I mean a dvd. On the upside, I had a little spending money which I promptly threw on a pyre and sacrificed to the 'Books-A-Million' and 'Barnes & Noble' gods. I'm pretty excited about some of the bounties they rained down upon me...
Misfortune Wesley Stace Book Hipster Moustache Gogol Bordello
I got two 'real' books, Misfortune by Wesley Stace and The Fourth Bear by Jasper Fforde, both novels I haven't heard of before. Misfortune appears to be about sexual identity and weirdness in (I think) Victorian England. The Fourth Bear is part of the 'nursery crime' series, which sounds a lot like the cgi movie Hoodwinked or the first volume of Fables...a crime/mystery story in a fairy tale world. Be nice if it turns out to be as enjoyable as those were.
Fourth Bear Jasper Fford Nursery Crime Jack Spratt
The thing I was most excited to find was Marvel Visionaries : Walter Simonson vol.1, which collects the first 11 issues of Simonson's character-defining run on The Mighty Thor. Justin and I may be the only comic-geeks in the entire blogosphere who haven't read this run in it's entirety, so I'm psyched to finally see what all the fuss is about. I've been spoiled by quarter bins and Essentials/Showcase collections (if you're not 'in the know', Marvel and DC sell big 20-plus issue collections of their older stuff in black and white at very low prices) , so it irked me a bit to pay $30.00 for eleven issues that were published in the 80's. From what I hear, though, this is material that a. needs to be enjoyed in big, vibrant color and b. is worth the money. I have high hopes, since this is the run that brought us not only Beta Ray Bill, but also turned Thor into a hoppity-frog.
Thor Simonson beta Ray Bill Hammer

Thor Frog Simonson Mjolnir

I also got two collections of the current Captain America series, which chronicle Steve Roger's death and Bucky 'Winter Soldier' Barnes becoming Captain America in his place.Captain America 25 Brubaker Death Sharon CarterCaptain America 31 Brubaker Bucky Barnes Winter Soldier Red Skull Marvel I like this series quite a lot, although I do think it's just a tad overrated, maybe just because I also really liked Robert Kirkman's fun, lighthearted run before Ed Brubaker took the series in the dark, realistic direction that's proven so popular. It's easy for me to get behind a new take on a character if said character was languishing in comic book limbo or being written terribly before, but when one good creative team takes over from another I can't help missing the old even as I enjoy the new (I had the same problem with New X-Men when Kyle and Yost came on). Still, what I've read of this run's been good, and I love Crossbones (I was him for Halloween in '07!), so I'm looking forward to these.
Crossbones Captain America Marvel villain
I found a few really great deals yesterday too. The first volume of Brian Wood's Northlanders, the new Vertigo series about vikings I've heard only good things about, has a cover price of only $10 for 8 issues! Vertigo's pretty awesome about that. Some people complain about the quality of paper they use, but I say kudos to them for getting their (almost always good) books out there at such an affordable price. Northlander Sven the returned Brian Wood Davide Gianfelice DMZ

That wasn't the best deal I got, though, since I found two graphic novels I've been intending to check out on sale for $3.00 each! Elk's Run makes sense because it's a library copy (a library copy of a comic book that features full-frontal nudity, which likely explains why it's not in the library anymore), but the other, Prince of Persia just came out a couple weeks ago, so it's weird that they have it marked down so low already. Maybe they got bonus copies or something, cause they've got books on the shelves that haven't sold in like a year still at full price. I don't know.

Elk's Run comic joshua hale fialkov horse buggy speakeasy
I picked up the first issue of Elk's Run way back when it first came out and thought it had potential, but it didn't grab me enough to buy monthly. Now I get to pick up the entire series along with 100 extra pages (wow!) for the price of that one issue, which is exactly why I wait for the trades these days. Anyway, it's a 'small town has a dark secret' book, and was apparently quite well received. Prince of Persia is based on the video game series, but only tangentially. I read an interview in Game Informer with the franchise's creator, Jordan Mechner, about this book (as well as the upcoming movie) and how it's not an adaptation or continuation of the games (if I remember correctly, it's technically a prequel) because he thinks each medium has it's own strengths and deserves a story tailored to them. So, instead of getting someone to redraw a bunch of random images from the in-game cinemas and calling it a story (hello, Devil May Cry and Metal Gear Solid comics), he gets an iranian journalist to write it, and a husband/wife duo with backgrounds in childrens books and animation to illustrate it (very nicely). No idea how well this is gonna work out, for the quality of the story or the sales, but at least he gets points for thinking outside the box. Looking forward to reading it.prince of persia graphic novel sina leuyen pham alex puvilland
Right after I bought the Thor book and Northlanders I got in the car, and Immigrant Song came on the radio. Truly, mine monetary sacrifice doth please thy pagan gods of rawk!

Thor Frost Giants viking one-shot Matt Fraction
There's one other book I got, which I've already read, and it's a knockout. Full review on that later.

1 comment:

  1. Hey,

    nice feature on my blog. I would have commented sooner but my internet connection just went dead in the middle of writing a post.

    And kudos on the books and comics you got. Especially the Walter Simonson THOR is one hell of a story. I´m envious that you can read that for the first time.

    This was one of my favorite runs although I have to say that I also liked the stuff that followed with Walter Simonson writing and Sal Buscema drawing it. The whole storylines with Asgard fighting against the egyptian gods, Black Knight succumbing to the curse of the Ebony Sword, Asgard drifting through the Negative Zone, etc., etc.

    The whole Ron Frenz era with the death of Loki, Mephisto and the soul shroud, the timetravel adventure with the future Thor and Beta Ray Bill and Eric Masterson becoming first Thor and then Thunderstrike.....Sparky the Lightning Boy, those were really good stories.