Sunday, March 31, 2013

2012 “DC SH39: Ambush Bug Cubee” by Joshua Wolf

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People tend to forget that Ambush Bug started out his career as a super-villain who murdered a man in cold blood (It was only ink!) I definitely prefer him as an insane antagonist over the schlub that took hold in Son of Ambush Bug and beyond. New 52 reboot?

Joshua Wolf's Villains Cubees

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Justice League of America Television Show Animated Openings

I was recently inspired to compare the various credit sequences from JLA shows, which is easier if they're all on one page, like this one right here in front of you...

The Superman/Aquaman Hour of Adventure Justice League of America segment (1967) ran just three installments. Hawkman is clearly no substitute for Batman.

Super Friends (1973–1974) ran for 16 hour long episodes played seemingly endlessly for forty years now. That's right, it's the fortieth anniversary of SuperFriends. This is what half a lifetime ago looked like, as defined by Wendy, Marvin and Wonder Dog. So remember now, Earth's greatest heroes are Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman, and Aquaman. Put that in your web-shooter and snikt it.

The All-New Super Friends Hour (1977-1978) was an hour short of matching the original run's length. The Wonder Woman TV show's success helped spur the revival, which proved much more popular than the original run. I would not extend overly much credit to the Wonder Twins.

Challenge of the Super Friends (1978) got rid of the pesky kids and reversed the policy of very sporadic appearances by occasional super-villains in favor of the thirteen member Legion of Doom turning up for all of the 16 produced hour-long episodes.

The World's Greatest Super Friends (1979-1980) was a real backslide, replacing the Legion of Doom with cheesy Filmation originated threats and restoring the Wonder Twins & Gleek to prominence while ignoring the minority heroes from previous seasons. There were only 8 half-hour episodes.

Super Friends (1980-1982) returned to the international flavored League for 22 hours over three seasons. Most were just seven minute segments, and were buoyed by reruns laced into the hour.

Super Friends: The Legendary Super Powers Show (1984-1985) only produced eight half-hour episodes, divided into ten minute segments. Firestorm and the minions of Darkseid were the draws.

The Super Powers Team: Galactic Guardians (1985-1986) offered another eight half-hours, and this one time I mean the stories ran the full length of the show. Cyborg was introduced, and this was the only season to forgo narration.

Justice League (2001-2004) is generally considered the best and longest continuously produced JLA cartoon. It was also the first to feature founding Leaguer Martian Manhunter (unless El Dorado was an alias or something.) This does not make up for the horrible CGI animation in the first season opener. 52 episodes were produced across two "seasons" before rebranding.

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Justice League Unlimited (2004-2006) ran an additional three "seasons" of 39 total episodes. This was more like a DC Universe series than a League specific one, and was therefore more awesome than ever.

Monday, March 25, 2013

2011 DCU Movie Fan Casting: Michael Jai White as Bronze Tiger

At 45, Michael Jai White is not a young man, but he is a very fit one. To accurately portray Ben Turner, a fighter who could cripple the Batman himself, you need an actor of great presence with legitimate martial arts prowess. Besides, the guy deserves better in the super-hero sweepstakes than friggin' Spawn...

Diabolic Movie Fan Casting

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Comic Reader Résumé: April, 1985

After all the personal landmark comics I read in March, I guess I must have rested in I only picked up three comic books from April of 1985. I fished a number of comics published this month from Marauder Books, which was one of my early regular shops nestled in a strip mall married to a grocery store. That was in 1989 though, so I'm not prepared to count them for the purposes of this project. Still, I'd like to give shout-outs to Legion of Substitute Heroes Special #1, Tales of the Teen Titans #55, and The New Teen Titans #10 for nostalgia value more than their being any great shakes. I also feel the need to spotlight Grimjack #13, the first issue I paid full price for at Marauder. I'd fished Grimjack #8 out of the bin previously and hated the lead, but I got enough laughs out of the Munden's Bar back-up to give it another try. As it turned out, I hated 98% of all other Munden's stories, and ended up collecting the entire run of Grimjack with #13 as my gateway. Still, that's four years from where we're covering today.

I may have bought Muppet Babies #2. I'm not certain, as I think this cover art was used in house/STAR Comics subscription ads, but I did like me some Muppet Babies at the time. I recall making the conscious choice to avoid Secret Wars II, despite my enjoyment of the first volume. The Beyonder just looked too doofy for my taste, Al Milgrom was way not Zeck or Layton in handling hordes of heroes, and it just plain looked bad. I thumbed through my half-brother's copies when we started having a relationship a year or two later, but never actually read this series. Similarly, I recall John Byrne's cover to Rawhide Kid #1 when it hit the stands and wondering "why this?" I probably got Sectaurs #2, but it didn't make a strong impression on me. For all I know, it was in a three-pack months later, or even came from a buddy years later. Whatever.

Blue Devil #14 was cute, and I'll confess that the first time I saw Robin's debut in Detective Comics #38 years down the line, it reminded me of Kid Devil. That's kind of wrong.

Dreadstar and Company #2 landed in a weird place between close to home and Afternoon Special with its tale of Willow's troubled life, but the story was solid overall and I adored the art. This was my book, and I cherished it.