Monday, December 23, 2019

Spider-Man's Hollywood Issues Long Predate Sony

This week at CBR, I'm revisiting Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends for the first time -- an episode that also served as an Incredible Hulk pilot, and was inspired by a silly premise Stan could never let go of.

Monday, December 16, 2019

Did Batman: The Animated Series Waste a Classic Villain?

This week at CBR, I revisit Penguin's strongest showings in both Batman: The Animated Series and the tie-in comic. Hey, is the phrase "Blind as a Bat" problematic today?

Monday, December 2, 2019

Monday, November 25, 2019

Batman '89 Could've Been Very, Very Different

This week at CBR, I'm looking back on legendary screenwriter Tom Mankiewicz's stab at a Batman film back in the 1980s. The bloody Dick Sprang-inspired finale is certainly something.

Monday, November 4, 2019

When Batman:The Animated Series Added That Other Guy to the Title

I'm looking back on the Clock King episode people supposedly don't like, and another excellent installment of the final Batman Adventures series this week at CBR.

Monday, October 28, 2019

When the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Returned (the First Time)

This week at CBR, I'm looking back for the first time at the 2003 reboot of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. This series drew heavily from the original black and white comics, so if you have any specific episodes you'd like for me to cover, just let me know.

Monday, October 14, 2019

The 100th Adventure(s) Time!

This week at CBR is the100th official installment of Adventure(s) Time! (I've done "specials" that I didn't count towards the total because they didn't strictly fit the format...this is the one hundredth comics/cartoon comparison.) To celebrate the anniversary, I look at the official DCAU meeting of Batman and Superman...along with the times the "animated" comics jumped the gun.

Monday, October 7, 2019

Before the Arrowverse, there was...Super Max!

This week in my Page One Rewrite series, I look back at Super Max, the abandoned script that kinda-sorta mutated into both the Arrow TV series and Suicide Squad film.

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

BLACK HAT BLUES - Free On Amazon! (For a few days...)

My book Black Hat Blues is FREE to all for the next few days! No strings attached...though a review on Amazon would be appreciated. I'm close to my goal of fifty, which is a great feeling. (And thanks to everyone who did take the time to leave a review. It honestly means a lot.)

Monday, September 16, 2019

Adapting the Gambit Miniseries (Before It's Finished)

Remember when the animated X-Men series dedicated an episode to adapting the story from the Gambit mini...which was still being published? I look at both this week at CBR.

Monday, September 2, 2019

What If the '80s Spider-Man Movie Was Actually Pretty Good?

Truth is, they had a solid script. The second installment of my new Page One Rewrite series looks back at the Cannon Films Spidey film that came darn close to happening.

Monday, August 19, 2019

Monday, August 5, 2019

Free Book Alert!

Haven't checked out my new novel yet? For shame! But you can download a free review ARC of my book BLACK HAT BLUES -- available for the next few days! Download for free here!

Friday, August 2, 2019

G. I. JOE YEARBOOK #3 (March 1987)

One of my first comics. Purchased when in withdrawals, after the show’s cancellation.
This is one of the many follow-ups to “Silent Interlude.” Perhaps the first. Also an early Ron Wagner job.

Monday, July 29, 2019

The X-Men Movie We Missed in 1994

Probably more than you ever wanted to know about the abandoned 1994 X-Men movie draft (from the writer of Seven!) This week at CBR!

Monday, July 22, 2019

Monday, July 8, 2019

Thursday, June 27, 2019

UNCANNY X-MEN #385 (October 2000)

Shell Game
Credits: Chris Claremont (writer), German Garcia, Michael Ryan, and Randy Green (pencils), Panosian/Pepoy/Ketcham (inks), Richard Starkings & Comicraft (letters), Richard Isanove (colors)

Summary: Gambit’s team of X-Men raid an upscale party in Madripoor, aiding the Goth and Crimson Pirates in abducting several attendees. Rogue’s crew of X-Men arrive, stunned to see their teammates working with the villains. The two teams fight, with Rogue’s side apparently losing. Unbeknownst to their opponents, Gambit has touched skin with Rogue, imparting unto her the means of defeating the Goth’s leader. After everyone is teleported to their secret Chinese base, the united X-Men attack Tullamore Voge and his slavers. Rogue, having absorbed Gambit’s power, overloads the Goth’s leader with energy. The resulting explosion kills him, and enables the X-Men to defeat the slavers. Gambit, recognizing Rogue’s discomfort with killing their opponent, offers her his support.

Friday, June 21, 2019

X-MEN #104 (September 2000)

Painted Ladies
Credits: Chris Claremont (writer), Lenil Francis Yu (penciler), Mark Morales (inker), Richard Starkings & Comicraft (letters), Liquid! Graphics (colors)

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

UNCANNY X-MEN #384 (September 2000)

Crimson Pirates
Credits: Chris Claremont (writer), Adam Kubert (penciler), Tim Townsend w/Lary Stucker (inks), Richard Starkings & Comicraft (letters), Richard Isanove (colors)

Summary: The Crimson Pirates abduct Defense Minister Demetri Koniev, threatening his family if he doesn’t cooperate. Meanwhile, at the former KGB headquarters, Deb Levin and Major Vazhin join the X-Men in interrogating Tullamore Voge. Phoenix attempts to invade his thoughts, only to connect with Wolverine, using Cerebro in New York. While informing her of the Goth’s attack, Voge nabs Wolverine and nearly transforms him into a slave. Phoenix shunts him out of the Astral Plane just in time. Cable, however, is altered after entering Voge’s mind. He appears to be suddenly cured of the techno-organic virus, just as Minister Koniev appears outside, demanding entrance. When Vazhin refuses, the Crimson Pirates attack. The X-Men are robbed of their victory when Cable betrays the team. Facing a barrage from the Pirates, Beast is forced to retreat with Phoenix and Deb.

Monday, June 17, 2019

Friday, June 14, 2019

G. I. JOE YEARBOOK #1 (March 1985)

Michael Golden cover for another Marvel JOE cash-in. #GIJoe #LarryHama #MichaelGolden
Golden’s work in the Yearbooks will be legendary in some circles, but he’s only doing a cover and pin-up here. #MichaelGolden #GIJoe

Monday, June 10, 2019

X-MEN #103 (August 2000)

The Goth
Credits: Chris Claremont (writer), Tom Raney (penciler), Scott Hanna (inker), Richard Starkings & Comicraft (letters), Liquid! (colors)

Thursday, June 6, 2019

UNCANNY X-MEN #383 (August 2000)

Moscow Knights
Credits: Chris Claremont (writer), Adam Kubert (penciler), Tim Townsend w/Dan Panosian (inkers), Richard Starkings & Comicraft (letters), Richard Isanove (colors)

Summary: In Moscow, Storm evokes the name of her thief mentor El-Gibar to solicit the aid of mobster Simyon Kurasov. She explains Azlexei Vazhin called in a favor owed by the Thieves Guild to have Gambit recruit the X-Men. Their mission was to free Vazhin’s associate, Deb Levin, from The Slash, a seedy club run by the mysterious Ransome Sole. Storm remained as backup, while Phoenix, Gambit, Cable, and Beast were captured by Sole’s young slave, a mutant named Sketch. With Simyon’s help, Storm arrives in time to stop a slave auction overseen by Sole. Bidding for the X-Men are representatives of the Neo’s Shockwave Riders, and the interdimensional slaver known as Tullamore Voge. With the aid of Sketch, the X-Men overcome Sole and his flunkies: Big Casino, Revenant, Manacle, Bludgeon, and Cudgel. The Shockwave Riders teleport away Sole and his lackeys, but Deb Levin is freed, and Tullamore Voge taken into custody.

Friday, May 31, 2019

X-MEN #102 (July 2000)

The Cruelest Cut
Credits: Chris Claremont (writer), Lenil Francis Yu (penciler), Mark Morales (inker), Richard Starkings & Comicraft (letters), Liquid! (colors)

Summary: Wolverine and Dani Moonstar investigate the remains of Mr. Sinister’s base in Sage, Nebraska. Using her powers, Moonstar recreates Domina’s assault on Sinister and Sabretooth. In Brooklyn, Cecilia Reyes attempts to fight off the Neo with the aid of the drug, Rave. Rogue’s team of X-Men arrives as backup, soon joined by Archangel and Wolverine. Domina channels the powers of her fellow Neo, embarrassing the X-Men in battle. The Neo known as Barbican seals up the church complex, forcing the X-Men to escape through a disappearing tunnel, leaving Reyes and Charlotte Jones behind. Elsewhere, Senator Kelly visits his wife’s grave. Tessa appears, broaching the subject of his presidential run.

Monday, May 27, 2019

UNCANNY X-MEN #382 (July 2000)

Lost Souls
Credits: Chris Claremont (writer), Tom Raney (penciler), Scott Hanna (inker), Comicraft’s Saida Temofonte (letters), Brian Haberlin (colors)

Summary: Cable offers the team psychic protection to enter Phoenix’s mind. Soon, he must also defend her body from a new attack by the Shockwave Riders. Phoenix successfully defends herself inside the mind of the dying Shockwave Rider, but is unprepared for the astral arrival of the Lost Souls. The shadowy Neo faction invade the minds of the X-Men, manipulating their greatest fears, pressuring them to give in to despair. Phoenix overpowers their dark force, then uses her powers to revive the dying Shockwave Rider. The X-Men attempt to part peacefully with the Neo soldiers. Later, Gambit urges the team to join him on a mission he declares more important than the Neo.

When X-Men: The Animated Series Killed Off Phoenix (Early)

How did X-Men: The Animated Series shock fans both old and new? And which two X-villains were named after jokes on the page margins? (Plus, it's an excuse to talk about the first John Byrne issue of Uncanny!)

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

X-MEN #101 (June 2000)

Hard Landing
Credits: Chris Claremont (writer), Lenil Francis Yu (penciler), Mark Morales (inker), Richard Starkings & Comicraft (letters), Liquid! (colors)

Monday, May 20, 2019

Todd McFarlane's Spawn - The Endgame...?!

This week at CBR, I examine the first season finale of Todd McFarlane's Spawn. Bonus -- we get to also relive the gruesomeness of the infamous Spawn #5!

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

UNCANNY X-MEN #381 (June 2000)

Night of Masques
Credits: Chris Claremont (writer), Adam Kubert (penciler), Tim Townsend (inker), Comicraft’s Wes Abbott (letters), Richard Isanove (colors)
Summary: In the midst of Venice’s Carnival, Phoenix takes Cable to an abandoned, underground “library” she first visited as a youth with Professor Xavier. While reminiscing, she notices psychic calling cards left by Gambit. Beast and Storm soon arrive, citing notes from Gambit, directing them to Venice. Suddenly, a Neo faction called the Shockwave Riders targets Phoenix and Cable. Their Psishark enters Phoenix’s mind, consuming her memories. Most Neo teleport after their defeat, but one remains for questioning. He wills himself to die; to the team’s shock, Phoenix enters his dying mind, determined to retrieve her memories.

Thursday, May 9, 2019

X-MEN #100 (May 2000)

End of Days
Credits: Chris Claremont (writer), Lenil Francis Yu (penciler), Mark Morales (inker), Richard Starkings & Comicraft (letters), Liquid! (colors)

Summary: Praying inside his church, Nightcrawler is ambushed by Rax, a member of a mysterious collective known as the Neo. Wounded, Nightcrawler locates Dr. Cecilia Reyes, unaware another Neo, Jaeger, is now hunting him. Reyes, panicked, shapes her forcefield into a spike and impales Jaeger. Elsewhere, a team of X-Men has joined Dr. Peter Corbeau’s crew in repairing the High Evolutionary’s orbital base. Seth, an undercover Neo, plants explosives and destroys the base. Combining their powers, Psylocke and Thunderbird rescue the crew inside a shuttle. Left behind, Shadowcat uses Seth’s spare space suit to return to Earth, certain it will take her to the Neo.

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

When X-Men: The Animated Series Went Full Sci-Fi

Jean Grey's reinvention as Phoenix is iconic. The costume Wolverine stole from an alien? Less so. More from the original Phoenix adaptation this week at CBR.

Monday, May 6, 2019

Parties Weren't Meant to Last - The Road to (X-Men) Revolution

Before stepping into the strange, distant land of early 2000, I thought it best to examine the context of the times.
In the year 2000, a president has emerged from a sex scandal with his highest approval ratings, the pop charts belong once again to actual pop acts, cable TV is attracting mainstream audiences with content too extreme for network broadcasts, and the average American has taken AOL up on those trial discs and ventured online.
The overall culture is recovering from the world-weary, ironic distance of the 1990s and embracing…mostly garbage, it seems. Or, at the very least, material that would’ve been deemed too vulgar for polite society only a few years earlier.

Monday, April 29, 2019

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