Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Lots O' Thots

So I wonder if your average comic fan, having grown up on Claremont's X-Men and Claremont and Miller's Wolverine throughout the 1980s, upon encountering the samurai films which Akira Kurasawa made with Toshiro Mifune (especially Yojimbo and Sanjuro), would have exclaimed, "wow, that Mifune guy is a total rip-off of Wolverine!"

Did Marvel ever sue MF Doom for appropriating so much of their artwork for his early albums? I really wish I had picked up Operation: Doomsday when I had the chance. I was living in the Bay Area when ti was first released in 1999, and if I had bought the first indie printing I'd probably be able to get a pretty penny for it on eBay.

But yeah, if he didn't at least get a cease & desist letter at some point, well, he was extremely lucky.

Speaking of Dr. Doom, just how bad is that new Fantastic Four cartoon? Bad enough to scar small children, if you ask me. I have a pretty high tolerance for bad cartoons - I'd much rather watch a mediocre cartoon than a pretty good-to-decent live-action show if we're talking pointless TV watching. But against all odds they have produced a Fantastic Four cartoon even uglier and less appealing than that Spider-Man abomination that ran on MTV a couple years back. This isn't just mindlessly mediocre, it's the Bataan Death March of television cartoons.

The whole thing looks like it's saturated with some sort of nausea-inducing glow. Everyone has ugly haircuts. The voice acting is about what you might expect from a junior high production of Caligula. The Thing has a big "4" spray painted across his chest for no reason I can tell.

And, of course, the Thing is huge, which is one of my biggest pet peeves for pretty much every comics artist to come along since John Byrne. The Thing is not huge, he is slightly shorter than Reed, for heavens' sake. That's why him going up against the Hulk is such an effective image: it should be obvious from the art that the Hulk is bigger and stronger, but the Thing steps up anyway. When the Thing and the Hulk are both roughly the same size, the whole dynamic is shot all to hell, because the reader (or viewer) has no reason to believe that the Thing isn't as strong as the Hulk . . .

Oh well, maybe it's just me.

How the heck did they let Jim Lee get behind on not one book, but two? That takes a special type of talent. I have to wonder why we haven't seen a new issue of All Star Batman & Robin in forever -- did the toxic word of mouth force the creators to step back? Or perhaps they both have so many irons in the fire that they can't be bothered to produce what is inarguably one of the top-selling comics in the country, regardless of the negative buzz?

Why does Heidi MadDonald's photo on the masthead of The Beat look like she's just about to attack someone? It's always struck me as a particularly menacing picture, like the kind of "mug shot" you'd see on the back of some really angry punk rock album. I don't know if the image Heidi wants to project is that of an angry ferret.

On the other hand, I still chuckle whenever I see the masthead illustration for Spurgeon's Comics Reporter. That's pretty much exactly how I envision evenings around the Spurgeon dinner table.

Dirk needs a masthead with some kind of fun picture in it. Perhaps he should hold a contest?

OOOOOOOH, the McRib is back. It's odd how something so totally disgusting can at the same time be so appealing. This is why I will probably never actually become a vegetarian.

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