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I’m Ekko. I’ve been blogging since 2001. I started with music, then added some humor and miscellany, and now also write extensively about comic books. These are my lifelong loves.

If you want to submit your music or art for consideration, please e-mail me ekalett@yahoo.com. I read and listen to all submissions, but only review the ones that I really like. I do not review music released on a label that is part of the RIAA. This is an independent site.

This is the “home page” of my site. If you’re only interested in specific topics, please click on the topic from the menu bar at the top of this page.

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a little bit of BK in VA

IRON MAN VOL. 4 #7-14

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So, in our last post on this series, we finished up with Warren Ellis’ Extremis storyline.  We also saw that Ellis’ Iron Man would kill to solve a problem.   In these issues, Charles and Daniel Knauf take over the writing chores and they immediately take all the bite out of Ellis’ twist.  Yeah, he kills.  But only because he knows he can restart the enemy’s heart.

Yawn.

Oh, and of course it’s also sowing the seeds for Civil War.

This series started strong and now…Isn’t.

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY JOHN BYRNE

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John Byrne was born on July 6, 1950.  He’s the only celebrity I ever stalked.  Actually, I just knew he lived in Brooklyn Heights and saw him enter a house on the street where I was working.  I didn’t want to bother him so I just stared at him.

I think I creeped him out.

Anyway, I’ve celebrated him quite a bit on this site because the 1970s and 1980s Marvel is my favorite comic book era–and that’s when he was at the top of his powers. He was my 8th favorite Writer/Artist of all time.

But I’ve never done a Top 10 devoted to him.

Now’s the time.  Hit next for the Top Ten John Byrne Comics!

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BOBBY RAPS AND CORBIN-Couch Potato (EP)

What the hell is this? I hear some almost hardcore rap delivery here, but then Frozen Tundra comes in and it’s an airy, almost Basehead-like space jam. Corbin (aka Spooky Black) is behind the board, and the beats are great. Bobby Raps is just….Odd. His lyrics are odd (when you can understand what he’s saying), and his delivery isn’t quite stoned…It’s more drunk. Very drunk. And as such he’s prone to angry sudden outbursts.

This is by far the strangest hip hop EP debut I’ve heard in a while.

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10 RANDOM THOUGHTS ABOUT COMICS

I’m sick on a holiday and I’m thinking….

10. Johnny Ryall’s Prison Pit is loved by many but it’s crudely drawn violent porn. I love prisons. I love violence. But I just don’t get this.

9.  The New DC might actually be good.  Even though DC You sounds like a public service message.  Earth-2, Justice League of America, Midnighter, Dr. Fate, Omega Men, and Martian Manhunter all had strong #1s.  And I’ve always felt Martian Manhunter was irredeemable shit.

8.  Secret Wars 2015 is the best Marvel Event ever, because just about every single spin-off is tons of fun and worth reading.  But it’s basically just one long “What If?” adventure, exploring what might have happened if all those old events or characters had survived.  I don’t know what comes after Secret Wars, but I’m in no rush to find out.

7.  SW seems to be about bringing back old characters, but I don’t see Quasar.  And for that I am grateful.

6.  So between Marvel and DC both being at the top of their game, I barely have enough time to read.  But Image is also kicking ass.  Great new stuff from them this year, especially the raunchy and wild Airboy.  I never liked the original, but this version kicks naked hairy ass.  I mean it.  Lots of crude nudity.  It feels like the kind of comic Grant Morrison would make if he were Garth Ennis.

5.  And speaking of Garth Ennis: Where Monsters Dwell and All-Star Section 8.  He’s writing his best stuff for Marvel and DC, and he hasn’t written for them in years!

4.  Remember that time Frank Miller made a kids’ toy tie-in ultraviolent?

3.  Speaking of Frank, I’ve been scanning through old issues of The Comics Journal from the late ’80s, and man did they hate him.  They said he was trite and boring and way too violent.  I guess I’m a peasant, because I thought his Daredevil work was terrific.

2.  I can’t think of a number 2.

1.  Got your Ant Man tickets yet?  I do.

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WHAT IF? #27-30

These are some pretty good issues, with one great one.  Let’s discuss one by one…

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IMG_9410#27: What If? Phoenix hadn’t died?  First of all, this came true.  In Fantastic Four #286 John Byrne, in a story supposedly inspired by a letter written by then-fan, later-writer Kurt Busiek, revealed that Phoenix never died.  Now, in the story she kicks Galactus’ butt and eventually destroys the world.  That didn’t happen, but the Phoenix force did come back and Cyclops almost did that so…Close enough.  True.

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#28: What If? Daredevil became an agent of SHIELD.  Nope.  Never happened.  But a What If? by Frank Miller, Mike Barr and Klaus Janson?  Fantastic.  One of the best issues ever.  I should say it’s only one of three stories in the issue.  At this time, What If? ran regular back-ups telling the history of the Eternals (yawn), and sometimes even had short What If? stories.  In this one, it’s What If Ghost Rider were Separated from Johnny Blaze?  This has happened about a dozen times.  So thanks to What If #28, we get TWO TRUTHS!  Cool.  The body count rises.

#29: What If? the Avengers Defeated Everybody? 

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Look for Popeye’s arm in the picture above…When Uatu said the Avengers defeated everyone, he meant everyone!

A great cover by Michael Golden and a solid story by Steven Grant, but this didn’t come true and really can’t.  Note, though, that the title of the story inside the book (i.e., as opposed to how it is billed on the cover) is “What If? The Avengers were the Last Heroes on Earth?”  Now that kinda has come true, because these days everyone is an Avenger.  But I have to say this story didn’t come true.  On top of that, the backup feature is “What If Namor Never Regained his Memory” way back the early days of the Fantastic Four.  It’s another good story, but it also never came true. So this would be TWO NOT TRUTHS.  Dagnabit.  I’m not counting back-ups anymore.

#30: What If Spider-Man’s Clone had Lived?

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He did.  And he even had his own comic.  Twice. Once, it replaced The Amazing Spider-Man while that title was given a rest right after it was run into the ground.  And then again when Marvel launched Scarlet Spider a few years ago because if one Spider-Man book was selling well on a thrice-monthly schedule, why not throw a steaming shitbag comic on top of it to get more money?

So the roundup for today is two true What If? stories, two false ones, bringing the total thus far to….

 

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