Panel of the Week #?

I’ve been doing a horrid job with this blog lately, I know, but I simply haven’t gotten to read many comics lately. Most recently, on a tip from a friend, I checked out Nick Spencer and RB Silva’s Jimmy Olsen. I never would have picked it up in a million years without his recommendation; every Jimmy Olsen I’ve seen over the last couple decades has fallen short, with the notable exception of Morrison’s. Like Morrison, Spencer understands the character: he’s not stupid, boring, or a perpetual squire in distress. He’s cool, and Superman is his pal for good reason. This panel, though, is of Lois, who is pledging to help him find a new girlfriend (it turns out she was lying). She looks strange, even deranged; actually, her look here very much reminds me of something from Young Liars. She’s a character that has rarely been done well either, I guess.

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Marvel Cats

Someday soon, I’ll get back to posting regularly, starting with a post on Gruenwald’s Squadron Supreme. In the mean time, here’s some Marvel Cats.

My favorite is Lar Desonza’s cat Thor.

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Panel of the Week 6

I’ve been sick lately and have pretty much been out of commission, but I hope to be back in the saddle soon. In the mean time, I’ve been reading 52, or at least some of it. I can’t stand some of the plots and characters – anything involving Steel in particular gets on my nerves. I hated him even back when he first debuted in 1993 when I was a feckless boy.

Some parts are really good though. I’m not always sure which of the five authors wrote what, but I’m certain that Morrison is responsible for the adventures of Animal Man, Dr. Strange, and Starfire in space. Early on, they meet Lobo, who has become the archbishop in the church of a Triple Fish God and sworn an oath of nonviolence. He’s accompanied by a floating, talking space dolphin. In the panel above from 52 #37, Lobo and the Dolphin speak some words over Animal Man’s corpse (don’t worry, he gets up on the next page).

Remind anyone of another partnership?

The talking space dolphin doesn’t talk nearly as much trash as Chubby, though he does have a pivotal scene where he convinces Lobo to give up his vow of non-violence  by convincing him that a client is calling him a coward. That actually ends pretty well for everyone.

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Panel of the Week 5

Maybe I chose this panel because I still have dinosaurs on the mind, but, oh lord, there’s so much to like about Seaguy. In this panel from Seaguy: Slaves of Mickey Eye, Professor Silvan Niltoid, a supergenius and ex-supervillain, shows Seaguy artifacts from the past he has reconstructed. The remains were dug out of the deepest, hardest gum layers. The creature on the left was a cyclosaurus. The one on the right was an autoraptor; it was a fierce dweller in the chewy deserts of the plasticine until the oil it ate to survive ran out. This reconstruction is part of a general trend in both Seaguy volumes of reimagining the past as rather more wondrous and strange than it actually was.

While I’m at it, as is my wont, I’ll throw in another few panels from issue 3. There’s probably ten panels I could have chosen, but I’ll leave it at this. Doc Hero has been infantilized and abused throughout Seaguy volumes 1 and 2. In fact, his abuse at the end of Seaguy volume 1 was one of the saddest parts of the book. In volume 2, his famed helmet – the helmet of Agamemnon, in fact – was earlier taken from him, and he’s become a sad joke. But here, at the end of volume 2, a bunch of average folks have taken shelter in some rides at the Mickey Eye Park before an explosion. When average folks are in danger and counting on him, when some of them are even doubting him, their last chance at survival, he pulls through and saves them. He picks up the rides themselves, looks up, and finally, for the first time since being brainwashed by Mickey Eye, takes to the sky. . .

Death knows he’s lost here. And, even if he no longer has the helmet of Agamemnon, Doc Hero is a hero.

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Weirdness from Yesteryear 3

The weirdness from yesteryear that I’ve looked at to date has all hailed from the Silver Age. This time, we’ll look at a story from the Golden Age: a short featuring the Vision from Marvel Mystery Comics #16. Unfortunately, I don’t believe the author and artist are known, but it’s reprinted beautifully in Mystic Comics #1, which also features a new story written and drawn by David Lapham. Lapham’s story is in some ways weirder – and, shockingly, in some ways not. This story was untitled, so I’ll name it “VISION VERSUS THE DINOMONSTERS!”

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"I'm just some weird lookin' thing dat shouldn't even exist": Seaguy Volume 1

It begins with cheating Death (at chess); it ends with a wink. It’s Grant Morrison and Cameron Stewart’s Seaguy volume 1 – the first part of a trilogy Morrison has called his Watchmen.

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This Week in Comics on the Internet. . .

I’ve never understood Wonder Woman, and I sometimes wonder if anyone does. The Absorbascon looks at dimensions of Wonder Woman’s character using his concept of “persona-cycles.”

Joe Mcculloch takes a long (and impressive) look at Steve Ditko’s most recent work.

I haven’t read a Valiant book in years, and I’m not sure I will any time soon. Colin Smith’s review of the Unity Saga doesn’t really make me want to go dig up my Valiant book, but dinosaur dung as a plot device almost makes me want to.

Hardly new, but I discovered the Gorilla Age of Comics this week; this cover or this cover is my favorite. The page also introduced me to the cross over of the millennium, JLApe. How in the world did I miss it? The image above comes from the cover of Wonder Woman Annual 8 – part five in the nine part JLApe saga!

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