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a little bit of BK in VA

Posts made in June 3rd, 2011

THE DC REBOOTS: Update

I probably should have waited another day before posting about the new DC, since now they’ve released ten covers of the new #1s and have confirmed/dispelled several creative team rumors…Here’s what we know/think we know (and what I think):

I’M EXCITED!

  • Superman by Grant Morrison.
  • The Fury of Firestorm by Ethan Van Sciver and Gail Simone, with art by Yildiray Cinar.  I have to be honest: I had no idea Van Sciver was a writer.  But Simone?  I think I’d follow her here.  Secret Six is far and away my favorite DC book on the stands right now.  (Although even her name couldn’t get me to buy Birds of Prey—just not interested.)  And when I was much younger, I loved Firestorm—back in the Ronnie Raymond days.  That issue where he meets Plastique and makes all her clothes disappear was probably one of my favorite stand-alone comics of the 1980s.  Seriously, you should try to go find it.  Lots of fun.  (Remember when comics were mostly fun?  I miss those days!)

I’M CURIOUS, BUT NOT READY TO SPEND THREE BUCKS AN ISSUE . . .

  • Wonder Woman by Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang.  Azzarello’s “Joker” graphic novel was good, as was 100 Bullets.  If this series actually makes it past ten issues, I’d be willing to shell out for the trade.  Of course, DC’s trade publication schedule is just about the only thing they do worse than their actual comic book publication schedule.  (Where the next issue of Dark Knight?  Where’s Batwoman?)  The only reason this isn’t in my “excited” ranking is because, well, it’s Wonder Woman.  She’s only been good once, for about five issues, during George Perez’s run.  Then again, if she’s really going to be sleeping with Superman…Oh, and the cover looks great—it’s the first time her new costume looked good on her.
  • Justice League International by Dan Jurgens and  Aaron Lopresti.  The lineup this time will be: One (or several?) of the Batmen (Bruce, Dick, International or otherwise), Booster Gold, Guy Gardner, Vixen, Fire, Ice, a member of China’s Great Ten superteam, Rocket Red(?!), and what appears to be Donna Troy (at least based on the cover).  Sorry, but without the original creators on this book I am exceedingly skeptical.  JLI was easily the best version of JL in history, but it was mostly due to the brilliant writing of Keith Giffen and J.M. DeMatteis (along with Kevin Maguire’s wonderful art).  This goes in my “wait and see” pile.  Especially since the cover is so humorless.

MEH.  IF LOTS OF FOLKS DIG IT, I MIGHT TRY IT IN TRADE.

  • Aquaman by Geoff Johns and Ivan Reis.  I think I’m over Geoff Johns, and I think I can safely say that Aquaman will never, ever make my pull list.  But if the reviews are truly raves….
    Justice League by Geoff Johns and Jim Lee.  The only big name who has gotten more boring than Geoff Johns is Jim Lee.  But both have had past greatness, so there’s potential here.
  • The Savage Hawkman by Tony Daniel and Philip Tan.  Love Tan.  Don’t love Daniel all that much.  Don’t care about Hawky.  Sorry.
  • Green Lantern, still by Geoff Johns.
  • Teen Titans, possibly written byScott Lobdell.  They keep sucking me in because I so want this book to be good again.

ABSOLUTELY NOT.  NEVER.  NO THANK YOU.

  • The Flash by Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato.  Flash is a nonstarter for me. Everyone says he’s never been better than he is now, with Geoff Johns at the reins, and I find the book wholly unimaginative.  And the cover for the new #1?  It’s Flash running toward the reader with lightning all over.  Like I’ve never seen Manapul draw that before.
  • Green Arrow by JT Krul and Dan Jurgens.  Krul is maybe the biggest hack at DC.  No thank you.  Story-wise, it’s being promoted as a new origin book.
  • Mister Terrific by Eric Wallace and Roger Robinson.
  • Captain Atom by JT Krul and Freddie Williams II.
  • DC Universe Presents featuring Deadman by Paul Jenkins and Bernard Chang.
  • Birds of Prey, creative team unannounced.  See above.  If Gail Simone couldn’t bring me in, I doubt anything could.

I HAVE QUESTIONS!

  • So there’s an ongoing Search for the Swamp Thing but no Swamp Thing #1?
  • Where the heck is Judd Winick?  I haven’t been able to read it (due to DC’s afore-mentioned horrible trade publication schedule), but I understand his JLI work was very good.  Why was he fired?
  • Mr. Terrific?  Captain Atom??  Really???
  • What’s going to happen with all the Batman books?
  • Will we finally (ever) see the Batwoman title?
  • Will we finally get a good Legion of Super Heroes series?
  • So with all the origin stories, and what looks like a Firestorm with Ronnie again, did Crisis on Infinite Earths never happen?  What about Zero Hour?  What about Infinite Crisis?  What was the point of all that, then?  I get the sense that anything Geoff Johns didn’t write or approve of is being erased from history.  I guess that’s not a big deal—superheroes do need to be refreshed and reimagined for new generations (otherwise they’d all be in their seventies by now)—but it does make the reader wonder why bother reading “important” series like Flashpoint, which I am reading solely because it is supposed to be so important, if they’re not really going to matter anyway in a few years.
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THEA GILMORE AND BOB DYLAN COVERS!

If you don’t know already, Thea Gilmore–who has a voice like an angel–has covered Bob Dylan’s brilliant album, John Wesley Harding, in its entirety.  That’s the one with St. Augustine, Dear Landlord, I’ll Be Your Baby Tonight and, yes, Watchtower.

Thea’s voice can occasionally sound like Margo Timmins from The Cowboy Junkies (which is far from a bad thing), but she’s got a sincerity and depth that is unmatched an incomparable.  So hearing her take on Bob is a treat.  Every song sounds different.  Particularly the afore-mentioned Watchtower, which is performed acoustically here as a bouncy blues rock tune.  The guitar work–finger picking!–on Dear Landlord is (gasp!) better than the original, and St. Augustine is maybe the most arresting cover I’ve heard this year.  Gilmore’s take on Dylan is faithful to the originals, adding only her rich characterization–she is a true vocalist, not just a singer.  And by that I mean she lets the song itself come to life, and serves as its voice, rather than hogging the spotlight (like everyone on American Idol and modern Top 40 radio).

If you love music, this is for you: This is a truly musical album.

I’ll Be Your Baby Tonight-Thea Gilmore
<a href=”http://soundowl.com/track/yl9/thea-gilmore-ill-be-your-baby-tonight” _mce_href=”http://soundowl.com/track/yl9/thea-gilmore-ill-be-your-baby-tonight”>Download Thea Gilmore I’ll Be Your Baby Tonight</a>
Thea Gilmore I’ll Be Your Baby Tonight

BONUS THEA!

I’m Down (The Clash)

BONUS BOB DYLAN COVERS!

I Want You-Rock Central (from Paper Bag Records’ terrific FREE covers album, which you can get here)

Man in Me-My Morning Jacket

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