I'm Just Sayin'…#5

So I’m sitting at my desk the other day, right? Listening to the radio, going through my last coupla weeks of comic book purchases – and tearing out all the “Secret Invasion” inserts from my Marvel buys, because frankly I just don’t care about this latest “event” and would just as soon not have any reference to them in my collection, thankyouverymuch Brian Michael BENDIS! – when “You Can Call Me Al” came on the radio. I like that song; whenever it comes on, I wonder how Art Garfunkel must’ve felt to be replaced by roughly a half-dozen Africans.

Anyhoo, my girlfriend passes by, and comments: “Ahh, Paul Simon – there’s just something about that twerp.” To which I had to agree…”yeah..he’s like Woody Allen, minus the creepy.”

This past weekend, SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN gave us yet another phenomenal episode titled “Competiton” – while Peter Parker and Harry Osborn try out for the football team, Norman Osborn is contracted by the Big Man to cook up a few “supervillains” to keep Spider-Man diverted from his larger operations. One Flint Marko, who had been repeatedly trounced by our friendly neighborhood wall-crawler for the first few episodes in a bit of a running gag, was more than happy to volunteer for an experimental procedure that would theoretically coat him in a thin silicone sheath, not unlike a form of body armor.

Yeah...going real well, wouldn't you say?

Yeah. You can guess how it pans out, right?

Here’s one of the things that I can’t get enough of with this new series – the little funny moments that are replete in the world of Spider-Man. Testing out his new powers, Sandman knocks over a bank and Spider-Man arrives on the scene, just in time for Flint to wipe the floor with our hero. Now, Sandman is so thrilled at having beaten the guy who kept humiliating him all throughout the first few episodes, he makes his jaw-dropping exit by turning to a mound of sand and sliding down a gutter…then after a beat, he realizes…that he FORGOT THE MONEY FROM THE BANK JOB!

The camera angle is on the gutter…and the big sack of money just on the curb…and you hear Sandman from under the street: “Awwww, MAAAAN!” Priceless!

So, really – Saturday mornings. Kid’s WB. You need to be watching. Just sayin’.

There’s been a lot of news in the comic world of late. Big news involving Superman, for instance. Isn’t that something else? The thing that really got my notice was the idea that in 2013, DC could lose all rights to the character, and then in 2033, Superman could enter the public domain. I don’t know a whole lot about copyright law, or even that DC would manage to lose their rights to the character in the future, but there seems like a natural sense of progression there, doesn’t it? In fact, the thought excites me a little, and I don’t even think I have any Superman stories in me. The character just transcends all things – it only makes sense to me that Superman would become something open to us all, the same way Sherlock Holmes is now. I love the possibilities that represents…

A Superman that belongs to the world. Can you dig it?

Incidentally…I just have to say – I really like how Frank Quitely draws Superman. Not necessarily the weird faces he draws sometimes, or even the strange way Big Blue’s cape is short in a way that makes me think of the superhero pajamas I used to have as a kid, which came complete with small cape removable by velcro…

…but I just love the way he is portrayed as just this big, gentle guy. No muscles exploding everywhere…just this big dude who reminds you of your favorite relative. Your dad, your uncle, your big brother…that dude in your family who’d pick you up when you were a kid, and when you were in their presence, you felt like everything was alright. Grant Morrison’s getting a lot of props for his work on this book, but don’t forget – he ain’t doing it alone…

By the way – now that I’m thinking of Sherlock Holmes, here’s something you have to look for: The Crimes of Doctor Watson – a book I came across a few weeks ago entirely by chance…it’s a fun little story, set during what Holmes fans call “The Great Hiatus” – the period when Holmes was believed dead – wherein Doctor Watson found himself framed for arson and murder, and wrote former ally and Civil War hero Col. H Kelsh Resmo for help. The book even includes “clues” – the items Watson sent to Resmo along with his letter, so that the reader can take a stab at solving the mystery. Naturally, Watson does get exonerated, but the fun is in seeing if you can figure out who the real culprit is…no peeking at the end, people!

Now that I’m in a recommending mood, I want to point you to a few of my favorite webcomics. First up…The Private Files of the Fowl.


Brought to us by Dan Schkade in 2006, we are thrust into the dangerous world of the Fowl, and his vermin-infested roost: Parris City.

You thought Gotham was a cesspool, imagine the kind of city that could birth a violently schizophrenic Batman with no qualms about using guns. My own words do not do this comic justice, because every time I read the latest entry, I’m simply struck dumb.

And then…there’s Breakfast of the Gods.

At this point, we are two thirds into an amazing saga given to us by one Brendan D. Jones – a world replete with your favorite cereal mascots…a great evil who thirsts for power…

A noble hero who is ready to stand in the path of that evil…

…and cameos, cameos, cameos.

I’m not going to show it all here. You need to read it for yourself and enjoy the ride. Personally, I can’t wait to see Sugar Bear do his thing:

Just a teaser here, folks!  BOTG Book Three begins in May.  Be there!

Part Three, coming this May. Oooh-hoo-hoo. It’s gonna be good, y’all.

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