The Things We Dig Up

I have been going through all my comic books lately to see what I have. I have two collections really. One is when I was a teenager – adult and all is bagged, boarded and in great shape. Then there is when I was really young where taking care of a comic was a bit secondary to it’s enjoyment and the thought of collect collecting vs the sake of value was not really there.

I managed to find two little gems. First is Ninja Turtles # 1 which is still in great shape surprisingly and the other is Star Lord # 1. Yes that Star Lord and from the 70’s. The rear cover has a tear in it, not huge but it’s still a tear. Apparently this thing is also worth quite. I am go pick up some bags and board so I can protect these comics along with others I found. Might send Star Lord to get a proper evaluation. Even if it was worth half of what these auctions go for I’m still a happy camper considering this was free back in the day. I also found some other vintage stuff which I will talk about later.

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Steve Rogers Captain America 1

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While I was trying to get a hold of DC Universe Rebirth I came across the now famous Steve Rogers Captain America 1. If you don’t want to know any spoilers then feel free to just not read further but to be very honest just about everyone knows this now. This is also why I couldn’t help but purchase the comic.

Captain America is a Hydra double agent. Yes, you read that right. It was a WTF moment of epic proportions. As your reading the book you get flash backs of Steve’s past and you can kind of see something coming but we are also introduced to the status quo of where Steve stands with Sharon, Shield and his partners.

Now while the reveal is a bit of a shock you also have an idea that something may be at play in all this and that is the cosmic cube and that is also what I am worried about. We all know Captain America will be back to norm eventually however I feel that we are getting the reveal almost immediately.

The idea of Cap being a traitor is awesome. Someone playing the boy scout for so long and wondering know what could have his side motivations been. What could he have been involved with when not putting up the charade. The potential is great for exploring this further and I hope the prolong this as much as they can.

Also you will notice Cap sporting a retro futuristic shield. It’s cool in how it’s inspired from the past but not sure about the laser cutter on it. I suppose it works but it’s odd that he would opt for that feature but it’s still cool none the less.

Steve Rogers Captain America is a great start to a new series that is excellently written. Captain America has always been a standard to great story telling and this reveal aside it still is. It has heart and wears it on it’s sleeve and gives us both action with some tender personal moments. I know I will be continuing getting involved in this series and looking forward to where this will go but as I mentioned, with a reveal like this they need to commit.

Update: DC Comics Rebirth is Here

For all you DC Comics fans you probably all know about the first issue of Rebirth being out in stores right now. This is the big shake up which brings huge changes to the universe. For one, the universe is completely changed and I think for the better.

New 52 cleaned the slate for the DC universe which divided the community in a horrible way. While no strangers to shake up’s in the universe, fans had a history with their favorite heroes but suddenly none of that existed. It was a bitter pill to swallow but would have maybe passed if they didn’t half ass the attempt. DC tried to imply some stories happened, some histories never changed but key elements were missing. It sounds confusing just explaining that and the readers thought the same as well.

Rebirth however brings a lot of our classic heroes back. A Superman who is with Lois and has a child, a Bat family that is back to status, Wally West who is a beloved flash is returned and much more. While we don’t know the whole landscape yet, it seems to be a sort of mia culpa to the mess that was caused.

Heroes seem to also be as silly as this may sound, heroic. The New 52 came off as being very emo in the way it was written. It was dark and gritty which missed what a lot of these characters were supposed to be about. Often it seemed that these heroes weren’t being good because it was the right thing to do, it was more ‘just because’.

All that aside though we got a glimpse of the big bad that caused these universe changes to begin with…Dr Manhattan. Yes, that Dr Manhattan!!! It’s weird and not sure how it all works yet but it has potential. I am rather mixed on this though as Watchmen to me was separate in it’s own grim universe. Merging them into the DC Universe seem’s a very odd choice that I hope they can pull off. It’s a gamble but I am wanting to see where this goes.

Rebirth seem’s to have a little bit for everyone and they are trying hard to erase the divide that was caused a few years ago. Only time will tell if things pan out but I know I will be happy to be grabbing up the latest issues.

UPDATE 05/28/16
I decided that I was going to jump into Rebirth and see it for myself and guess what? Apparently everyone did too. Seem’s that Rebirth is sold out everywhere. I tried two comic book stores and was told the same story however a second printing is coming so I just need to be slightly patient. I am considering ebaying it with a variant cover. If I am going to dish out $30 might as well get something unique though there are some variants that are selling for INSANE prices. Seem’s DC got things right thus far. I also have my friend at work who is a huge comic book buff that I have on the hunt for a local copy so either way I will get one but boy I am excited.

Captain America’s Big Surprise

Apparently this is a pretty news worthy item as it’s been featured everywhere, even CNN. The new Steve Rogers: Captain America issue revealed that Steve is a Hydra agent which would mean that all these years while he was a symbol for freedom that it really was all a sham. Obviously I don’t see this lasting long however I do admit this is intriguing and will be interesting to see where this goes.

Margaret Weis Productions not producing any more Marvel

Having just run a game of the incredible Marvel Heroic Roleplaying game on the weekend, I’m saddened to learn today that while it and the recent Civil War event books have performed well, it hasn’t performed well enough for them to produce more content for the license, and it will expire very shortly.

You can get the PDFs from DriveThruRPG until they disappear on Tuesday, April 30th.

In brighter news, they talk about the Firefly and Leverage licenses as well as the upcoming Cortex Plus.

MWP detailed this in a sort of “state of the union” post that you can read here.

Comic Book Review: Batwoman #1

With DC Comics rebooting of it’s universe, we have “The New 52” which of course is 52 new titles all starting at number 1. One of the issues I was looking forward to was Batwoman. If you never have had a chance to check out her previous adventures in Detective Comics when Bruce Wayne was MIA in the past then I highly suggest you do so. Suffice it to say I was more then happy to jump on board and purchase her first issue and I was not disappointed.

Batwoman starts out with her on an investigation of disappearing children by some sort of phantasmal being / creature. It has a nice little supernatural flare to it which was highly enjoyable as I don’t remember seeing too many of them. We also get a little brief recap of some events from her past outings as they try to sum up her current relationship to her father. Now for those who are wondering about the past events, nothing was really changed story wise in the new universe and all her past adventures can be considered carried over. But don’t let that fact fool you into thinking you need to check out older issues. If your new to comics or wanting to get back in slowly then this is a great introduction to the character and is easily a standalone no previous reading required. Now we are also introduced in an off hand way to a new villain who will be working behind the scenes in digging up info on Batwoman since Batman is too hard to deal with it seems. In all the whole issue really had a lot of crunch throughout the book. Lot’s of new elements yet still staying cohesive. But then again this is the standard for Batwoman comics. They seem to all be written with a lot of care and it really does this character justice. I am happy though that we have new villains and also an investigation that is ongoing.

Art wise I cannot get over how amazing everything looks. I have to say I have not seem many comics this good looking. And that is to say all of Batwoman comics tend to be this way. It is simply a visual treat. The story is always well represented and you never get lost within the panels. Backgrounds and characters are always well done. However there is one things that irks me a bit and I am not sure if it is creative direction or artistic direction however they seem to play off Batwoman’s sexuality by having her changing / being nude by another female but concealed as to be suggestive. Now while I find it a positive thing to have a character like this but I do find they try to exploit it for horny young teenagers. That is just my impression. It’s like they are trying for the cool factor for being ‘risqué’ which is a cheap ploy.

In all if Batwoman is any indication of what other New 52 comics may be like then I am quite happy. I really look forward to seeing where this story is going to go and also how the relationship between Batwoman and her father will evolve. If you have any inkling into trying something new in the new DC Universe then I highly suggest you jump on board this title. You will not be disappointed.

Comic Review: Detective Comics 857

Boy do I love Detective Comics especially since Batwoman has taken over the series on a temporary basis and this issue lives up to the high standards we have seen over her run.

Alice continues to cause havoc for both Kate and Gotham as she not only kidnaps their father but also is trying to kill all of Gotham. Now that is ambition and it works as the catalyst in this issue. Alice as the High Madame is a great villain as I have mentioned before. It’s great having new opponents and it being Kate’s sister it works as an extra point of interest and conflict. While we have mostly seen Alice as a crazed villain we have a glimmer of an internal conflict with her while she battles her sister.

The other part of the issue being the continuation of The Question: Pipeline where Montoya continues her investigation into human trafficking. With the spots being as mini as they are I find that we will have more of an idea of how good it is as a whole when the story has run it’s course. Things do move along and we are getting closer to the truth but we’re always left with a sense that we need more otherwise we are left we a flat feeling.

If there is one thing that Batwoman has excelled at aside from the storyline has been the art of JH Williams III. It has really given an identity to the Batwoman: Detecive Comics series. However I find that sometimes with how stylish the panels can be with it’s unique art that sometimes I have to double back to see if I maybe missed something.

Comic Review: Zatanna 5

After the last issue which I found somewhat less to be desired I was hoping for a big turnaround this issue and I am glad that it did. While the last issue didn’t have much building of anything aside from introducing the Royal Flush Gang who were handled in no time, some banter between Zatanna and her brother and being introduced to our new villain Benjy Raymond we pick up during the attack by the three fire elementals.

The elementals managed to put up a little of a fight by almost killing our favorite magician however she manages to survive and vanguish them. Zatanna’s brother also came to help however he is not as refined in his magic and thus, not much help at all. But we have some jealousy on the side of Zatanna’s brother which was hinted at last issue and he want’s Zatanna to be at his latest show. It’s a little side plot in her personal life which can be interesting if developed right and we have a catalyst later on. Benjy realizes that he has bitten more then he can chew in dealing with a demon after realizing his hotel and casino is home to many demonic visitors not to mention the added pressure of delivering Zatanna or loosing his soul. Zatanna of course puts on her show and is drugged shortly after by Benjy. The drug turns her hormones upside down and she is hankering for some Benjy which makes her miss her brothers show. She manages to fight her way out of effects of the love potion however Benjy has a undead zombie hord that captures her.

This issue was pretty action packed suffice it to say and that’s a good thing. I am enjoying the jealousy the brother is showing while Zatanna is just caught up in her own world. While she tries to make amends she is diverted by Benjy which is going to cause even more of a conflict. Maybe he will turn on her down the line. It would be an interesting twist. The duo of Benjy and the demon seem’S to be working out a bit more now. While it was a bit loose last issue we see more of the predicament Benjy is in.

The art I found was better but still had a classical look to it. Even though with every review I mention the good writing I still have to come out and say it’s very good. The cover also in this issue is much better compared to the last issue. In all it was very good to see things turn around quite nicely. By the way, if you haven’t picked up any Zatanna issues yet, get to it. Your really missing out.