Friday, February 25, 2011

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Dwayne McDuffie

Dwayne McDuffie has passed away due to complications after surgery.

This is a shock. McDuffie seemed to be in good health and tremndously active, writing the script for the "All Star Superman" dvd which came out this very day.

I was a fan of his wirting but truly came to love his craft after his scripts on "Justice League Unlimited" became the greatest episodes of Bruce Timm's greatest series. I adored his runs on the "Fantastic Four" and "Justice League" comics, both cut short in their prime. Just like their creator.

He will be missed.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Zartan commercial

I've been singing this jingle for 27 years. Somehow I remember it rocking much harder.

Direct link.

Friday, February 18, 2011

New "Thor" Trailer

I was never a big Thor fan as a kid. He just seemed like Superman (who I was also never a big fan) but more hoity-toity. Everything with him was all "thy" and "thou" and "mjolnir". I'd heard great things about Walt Simonson's run in the '80's but never finished it.

But I love Jack Kirby. So last month I bought the entire Stan Lee/ Jack Kirby run in hardcover. And it's great. Great great. Like "Fantastic Four" great. I'm not sure why I resisted so long. There's no reason to believe when both men were hitting their creative peaks they would have done a second-rate job on this.

So I've gotten more into Thor. Which may be why I'm feeling like this movie maybe the best of the summer. We all knew Kenneth Branagh would nail the Shakespeare (which is how Stan thought Norse Gods spoke). But this new trailer shows he's got the pace and the action chops (welcome news for those of us that sat through his five hour "Hamlet".)

Behold the awesome:

Direct link.

"Green Lantern", you've got a lot to live up to.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Len Lesser

Len Lesser passed away at the age of 88.

My generation will remember him best as Uncle Leo on "Seinfeld" and later on "Everybody Loves Raymond" where he played basically the same role. But Len's career as a character actor goes back to the late 1940's. Over the summer I picked up the complete dvds of "The Monkees". Len popped up twice. And he was great every time.

He will be missed.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Monday, February 14, 2011

Indiana Jones Comes Back

Toy Fair this year is looking solid. The Marvel line is with continuing and even Star Wars has a couple of things I'll buy (along with a genuine tease/rumor of a new Death Star playset at SDCC).

But the biggest news to me is Hasbro will be releasing the lost wave of Indiana Jones figures as a San Diego exclusive. This on top of the recent news that Hot Toys is making a 12" Indiana Jones which, once it's tweaked, should bury the Hasbro line. PLUS, a possible first ever Indiana Jones convention, taking place October 2011 in Chicago!

Happy Valentine's Day, me.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Jamba Juice Secret Menu

I've become obsessed with Jamba Juice. When I walked a mile and a half to the office every day, there was one location at the halfway point that kept me going. Now that I'm working at home I have to wait for the car and drive 7 miles to get to one. Which in my mind defeats the whole point of getting a fruit smoothie (to sum, I need a Jamba Juice in town).

So when I heard the rumor of Jamba Juice's secret menu, I was riveted. Plus it's true. It's like Jamba Juice just became more Jamba Juice. The only trick now is to order one of these without feeling like an idiot.

Monday, February 07, 2011

Bad Comic Book Movies

The Super Bowl means one thing to me; commercials. Part of it is professional and part of it is the traditional spots for the summer comic book movies. This year they showed Thor, Captain America and Cowboys and Aliens. Plus shots of the new Spider-Man costume leaked and a new Superman announced.

And of course the fans are worried. Because they worry about everything. Will they fix Spider-Man's eyes? Is Chris Evans big enough? Is Ryan Reynolds too goofy? Comic fans are terrified because they've seen a handful of great comic book movies and many bad ones.

But what fans forget is the damage is always contained. The worst that happens is a missed opportunity. "Daredevil" and "Ghost Rider" fans will always have to live with the probability that they will never see a great movie of that character. I live with that fact as a "Fantastic Four" fan.

No character was ever destroyed by a bad movie. The book still exists and is most of the time better than the filmed adaptation. Even "Spawn" is still publishing! Fans cling to their favorite characters to the point where they feel they have to be protected. That leads to fans complaining about every new creative team and costume change. And keeps comics insular, stagnant and dated.

Here's the greatest consolation. If the movie is truly bad, it will be forgotten. I mentioned to a friend that I was re-watching "Blade" and he said, "Ugh. That third movie is terrible". Yes, it is. But I can't remember it. I just remember it was bad. And that keeps me enjoying the good one.