I’ve had it up to here with “creators” who kill our heroes. It’s lame and it’s lazy. It’s stupid and repetitive. It’s as inane as it is egotistical.
And it’s a sign that a Hack’s at the Helm.
I’m aiming this invective directly at the Dan Slott’s of the world… And absolutely nobody gets a free pass. After all, Slott’s not the only half-wit to kill a hero– just the latest. I will freely admit to thinking it takes a special level of hackdom to kill a treasured icon– be they a Spider-Man, a Batman or a Superman– especially when these idea challenged throwbacks know full well their corporate masters will never allow their cash cows to roam about the ether for too long.
These poor excuses for typists all suck and can kiss my indignant ass. I can’t be the only reader who wants to vomit when these writers insist they love the characters they’ve just killed… That no one’s a bigger fan of these dead heroes than they are.
Killing a fictional hero isn’t inventive. It’s the exact opposite. These people kill our heroes because they literally cannot think of anything better or more original to do to keep their jobs.
Do any of these lemmings even know why people read popular fiction? I’m betting they don’t, so let me explain it to them: Because the real world is about all we can take. The death. The pain. The degradation. Superhero fans read comic books precisely because they want to believe that somewhere, somehow there still exists a spark of good in this world that can and will fight back to win the day.
And yet, you Hacks kill our heroes anyway. And every time you do, you ruin something special.
Go Fuck Yourselves, Hacks.
Anybody who’s ever frequented this site more than once knows we don’t kiss ass here. (I’m sure many loyal readers are now recovering from an involuntary spit take– as they yell at their computer screens, “No shit!”) But you’d be surprised. Amongst the incredibly stupid noise we receive weekly (and I bitch about on occasion), we had a group of mouth-breathing mama’s boys go to great lengths (on another site) to attack almost all our efforts here. (Jealously is a powerful drug.)
Of the many things they raked us over the coals for: A favorable review I gave one of Jonathan Maberry’s comics– all while I explained how Jonathan contributes to the site. Of course, I was explaining Mr. Maberry’s IMJ Contributions in an effort at full disclosure– but these abscesses on the ass of pop culture didn’t see it that way. “No!”, they screamed. I was praising Maberry’s book in an effort to kiss his ass, because he writes for IMJ.
Which brings me to John Layman— who’s comic Chew Jose has championed since its first issue. (Long before we created Inveterate Media Junkies.) Funny thing, after all the praise Jose has deservedly heaped on Mr. Layman, it’s me who’s ended up reviewing John’s comics since the site’s comic review column began (mainly due to a weird confluence of events.) And not so surprisingly, I also love virtually everything Layman writes as well. In short order, I have praised both his Mars Attacks series for IDW and even intimated his Detective Comics is the Batman comic every fan should be buying.
So, in that sense, it should come as no shock I am now highly recommending Layman’s first Mars Attacks trade paperback. But, to be clear– it’s not because there’s some secret edict insisting I must be kind to his work because Jose has broken bread with the man. It’s because I like the series.
If you click on the links I’ve provided for my original reviews, you’ll note I bought the first FOUR issues of Mars Attacks from Comixology… And yet I’m still buying the comics in Trade Format as well (even though I’ve read four of the six issues contained inside.) That’s how highly I recommend this book: I’ve essentially purchased it twice.
Like I said, we don’t kiss ass here… Nobody’s strong-arming me to write this praise-filled prose. I’m simply recommending this comic because Layman is a one hell of a great comic book writer and the art– by veteran Hitman (DC Comic series, not the video game) artist John McCrea— is perfect for the subject matter as well.
Sorry haterz, no nefarious backroom double-dealing here. Just pure, wholesome unadulterated praise. Layman and McCrea’s Mars Attacks Vol 1 Attack from Space is an awesome pleasure.
Adventures of Superhero Girl HC – Looks great!
Alabaster Wolves HC
American Comic Book Chronicles 1960-1964 HC
Art Of Dead Space HC
Assassins Creed The Chain – I’m boycotting video game comics!
Atomic Robo Vol 7 Atomic Robo And The Flying She-Devils Of The South Pacific
Batman And Robin Dark Knight Vs White Knight – Own the Hardcover
Batman Arkham Unhinged HC – Video game!
Batman Night Of The Owls HC
Bone Quest For The Spark Vol 3 HC
Bone Quest For The Spark Vol 3 SC
Captain America and Black Widow
Chronicles Of King Conan Vol 4 The Prince Is Dead And Other Stories
Counter X Generation X Four Days
Daredevil By Mark Waid Vol 1 HC – Recommended
Dead Space Collected Edition – No more video game comics!
Dead Space Liberation – No more video game comics!
Dead Space Salvage – No more video game comics!
Essential Marvel Team-Up Vol 4
Fafnir The Dragon Vol 2 Barack To The Future
Fantastic Four Island Of Death
Genius Illustrated The Life And Art Of Alex Toth Volume 2 HC
Green Arrow Salvation – Own the Hardcover
Hound Of The Baskervilles HC
Hypernaturals Vol 1
Iron Man By Michelinie, Layton And Romita Jr. Omnibus Volume 1 HC
Iron Man By Michelinie, Layton And Romita Jr. DM Variant Omnibus Volume 1 HC
Last Call Vol 2
Louvre Collection An Enchantment HC
Manara Library Vol 4 HC – Recommended
Mars Attacks Vol 1 Attack from Space – Hot Pick of the Week!
Marvel Firsts WWII Super Heroes – Recommended
Marvel Universe Ultimate Spider-Man Vol 2 Digest
Scarlet Spider Vol 1 Life After Death
Secret Battles of Genghis Khan HC – Interesting…
Sonic The Hedgehog Select Vol 7
Star Trek The Next Generation Doctor Who Assimilation² Vol 2
Stormwatch Vol 2 Enemies Of Earth
Strawberry Shortcake Vol 1 Berry Fun Collection
Suicide Squad Vol 2 Basilisk Rising
Thor Mighty Avenger Complete Collection – Marvel BS of the Week!
Torpedo Vol 2 – Own the Hardcover
Uncanny X-Force Book 2 Final Execution HC
Vampirella Archives Vol 6 – Recommended
Walking Dead Omnibus Vol 3 HC (New Print) – Own the Trades, etc…
Young Justice Vol 3 Creature Features
Deltora Quest Vol 10
Genga Otomo Katsuhiro Original Pictures HC
Hayate The Combat Butler Vol 21
Hiroaki Samura’s Emerald And Other Stories
Inu Yasha Vol 14 VIZBIG Edition
Knights of Sidonia Vol 1 – Manga Pick of the Week!
Maximum Ride Vol 6
This week’s new column sub-header is courtesy of a feature that originated in our IMJ Podcasts– a fan favorite called Marvel Bullshit. The only difference: This particular section won’t always apply to Marvel Comics. When needed, this part of Insideman’s Pull List™ will deal with any company that decides to pull a dick move. So next week– or a month from now– it may read “DC Edition” or “Image Edition”… And while I find it hard to believe it will ever read “Oni Press Edition”— any publisher will be fair game.
But this week, it’s Marvel’s turn. I co-opted the idea from our podcasts because I was tired of labeling a book a POS* (*Piece of Shit)– then having to explain I wasn’t really applying the term to the actual book I was reviewing– but some piggery on the periphery of the book I was criticizing.
And I find myself in the same situation again: In all the hoopla surrounding Marvel’s first Thor film (and the subsequent Avengers juggernaut), Marvel released the best Thor comic book they had published in years– Roger Langridge and Chris Samnee’s Thor, The Mighty Avenger. Despite remarkable praise and a growing number of fans picking up the comic later in the run, Marvel made the myopic corporate decision to can the book before its time– and the creators were only able to rack up 8 great issues before getting the boot.
But that didn’t stop Marvel from releasing two trades: Thor The Mighty Avenger Vol 1 and Vol 2… But since each collection only reprinted 4 issues in the series, the company padded each trade with two classic Journey in Mystery Thor tales by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. (And while these older reprints are far sight better than Marvel’s usual wiki-padding, the extra old comics were still padding, nonetheless.) To make matters worse (at least for me), Marvel also released the two Thor trades in the digest format.
Longtime Pull List readers know I detest digest-sized comics. I know they are an important format for kids (and admire them for that reason), but I don’t think adults should be forced to buy comics in the mini-format… Especially when the publishers don’t bother to tell mail order customers (like me) the collections aren’t full-sized. I really cannot stand when I buy trades that turn out to be mini digests. And while I also knew that Langridge and Samnee’s Thor was perfect for children– I still felt gypped when the first volume arrived… And even more gypped when I felt I needed to buy Volume Two to finish out my collection– though I knew it would be equally small.
Well, Marvel’s fixed all that now with this bigger, full-sized Complete Collection edition… And like most Marvel Bullshit, it arrives without any warning– after I already purchased the two digest-sized volumes. (Which I’ve also put off reading, because I just don’t like digests.)
So I’ve purchased these comics twice now. If you read my Mars Attacks review above, you know this obviously doesn’t bother me… But only when it’s my choice. Here, I felt compelled to buy both formats because 1) I had no idea the original volume would be digest-sized and 2) I had already purchased both digest collections long after the regular-sized format book suddenly appeared.
The Mars Attacks double purchase was a choice based on quality. The Thor Mighty Avenger double purchases were based on Marvel’s greed and unwillingness to accurately inform their customers of the size of their trade dress before release. I’m certainly not faulting the creators or their creation here– just amazed that I keep falling for Marvel’s tired old tricks again and again.
To add insult to injury, this new complete version also doesn’t include the extra old Lee/Kirby comic stories– making it $5.00 cheaper than the cost of the two digests combined. Gee, a complete version of a series I desperately wanted to read, in the larger format I originally desired… Without the old comic reprints I never wanted to begin with.
I wonder which version I would have purchased if Marvel didn’t seem more interested in gouging me than entertaining me?