Archive for November, 2011

November 13th, 2011  Posted at   News of Interest

I made a cameo appearance, along with a bevy of other comic book podcasting all-stars, in the promo for the Fantasticast, a new podcast hosted by Stephen Lacey and Andrew Leyland. I lent my voice to the nefarious Puppetmaster, issuing a thinly veiled threat to that hot-headed Human Torch!

Thanks to Stephen and Andrew for asking me to take part in the promo. I look forward to their show, and recommend you give it a listen when they begin in January at ffcast.libsyn.com.

November 8th, 2011  Posted at   The Thrilling Adventures of Superman

The Thrilling Adventures of Superman

Welcome to episode 45 of The Thrilling Adventures of Superman. The show’s mission is to explore the history and development of the Superman in his formative years by chronicling the Man of Steel’s Golden Age adventures in comics, radio and film.

Is your son a no-good bum? Are you being bullies by bookies to pay off your gambling debt? Accused of your crime you didn’t commit? This looks like a job for Superman! That’s right folks. We are going back to the spinner rack for the last time in 2011 as Michael looks at the Superman story from ACTION COMICS #24!

QUOTABLE:
Go ahead — confess, or I’ll shake your teeth loose!
-Superman

The cover to ACTION COMICS #24 by Joe Shuster and Paul Cassidy


Superman vs. Robots


On the phone...


He HATES to be destructive...

Download the episode directly. Or, you can subscribe to the show via iTunes or the RSS feed! Questions or comments? Additions or corrections? Drop a line! Share your thoughts on the episode and the issue. You can connect with show on Facebook and Twitter, as well, to get updates!

Links mentioned in the episode:
The check.
“Supermite!” is a complete unpublished Superman story, thought to be from the mid-1940s, and by Jerry Siegel and the Shuster shop.

The Thrilling Adventures of Superman is also a proud member of the Superman Podcast Network. And don’t forget to check out the Superman Homepage!

November 1st, 2011  Posted at   The Stack

I did a bit of a double-take when typing the headline for this post. It’s hard to believe we’re through October already. It seems I just started this feature! It doesn’t seem like it was 10 months ago.

But, nonetheless, here’s October:

Action Comics (Vol. 2) #1
All New Batman: Brave and the Bold #11
DCU Halloween Special 2010
Golden Age #1-4
Green Lantern (Vol. 5) #1
Green Lantern Corps (Vol. 3) #1
Green Lantern: New Guardians #1
Red Lanterns #1
Secret Origins 80-Page Giant #1
Superboy (Vol. 3) #57-61, 1,000,000
Supergirl (Vol. 4) #26-31, 1,000,000
Superman (Vol. 3) #1
Tiny Titans #44
Young Justice #3-7, 1,000,000
Young Justice (Vol. 2) #8
Young Justice Secret Files #1
Absolute Justice hardcover
Batman Chronicles, Vol. 6 trade paperback

Total: 35 comics, 2 trades (Year total: 349 comics, 13 trades)

THE GOLDEN AGE was a series I picked up on a recommendation from Michael Bailey (of Takes of the Justice Society of America, From Crisis to Crisis and several other podcasts. While I was a bit bored with it for the first two issues, it turned out to be an excellent story. I highly recommend it. Just don’t get turned off for the slow start. It’s a lot of build up and character, but it pays off. Trust me.

I don’t have much else by way of commentary this month. But, since the DCnU has begun in earnest, I thought I’d offer some very brief thoughts on the first issues of the six DCnU titles I’m reading. I probably won’t continue this in future Stack installments. But, I thought some might be interested. Plus, it might be nice to have them saved for posterity. I wrote these throughout the preceding month, soon after reading each book.

ACTION COMICS (Vol. 2) #1: An entertaining and solid read. But then, we knew it would be. While I may not be a believer that a reboot was warranted and I certainly question the wisdom of taking this tack with Superman in 2011, I have not yet doubted Morrison. I know he will ultimately do right by the character.

GREEN LANTERN (Vol. 5) #1: Good, but an absolute failure. This issue reads like just another issue in Geoff Johns’ run. Good, yes, but newcomers would feel none of the emotional resonance of Hal being ringless and Sinestro (Sinestro!!) having a green ring. We get no back story, no history, no connection to our hero (who comes off as a deadbeat loser). I see what Johns is doing and it’s fine if you’ve been reading his run to this point… but it’s a failure in regards to The New 52.

RED LANTERNS #1: Less violent than I thought it would be, but… meh. It was rather dull, but at least, unlike the above-mentioned GREEN LANTERN (Vol. 4) #1, we got a proper introduction to the character for the uninitiated. I’m curious, though, how they plan on sustaining an ongoing title where the protagonist is based on hate and rage — yes, a villain — without turning him into a hero. (Prediction: They won’t.)

(Side thought: I wonder if they would not have been better off replacing this book with an LEGENDS OF THE DARK KNIGHT-type “Tales of the Corps” series, where the creative team (or rotating creative teams, if needed), could tell arcs featuring members of the various Corps. Fruitless naval-gazing, I guess.)

GREEN LANTERN CORPS (Vol. 3) #1: Overly-gruesome for a book rated T. (RED LANTERNS is rated T+ and had less blood and gore.) Other than that, though, I though it was a strong lead issue. A great basic primer to the concept of the Green Lantern Corps, as well as the two main characters of the book (Guy and John) for the new readers, without being tiring to the returning. The strongest of the opening issues for four GREEN LANTERN-related books.

SUPERMAN (Vol. 3) #1: It’s curious… this issue seemed to be dancing around, loudly proclaiming, “Look! We’re new! We’re neeeeeeeew!” While at the same time trying to throw in Easter eggs to placate the old readers and bide their time, waiting for Morrison to establish more of their playground. But looking at it more objectively… this seemed more like an introduction to Lois Lane (and Metropolis and Morgan Edge) than the titular character. I’m not sure why new readers and non-fans would care about the main character or want to pick up the second issue beyond, “It’s Superman.”

GREEN LANTERN: NEW GUARDIANS #1: Another failure, but not to the degree of GREEN LANTERN (Vol. 4) #1. We did get a recap of Kyle’s back-story, but we got no context for it. We got no explanation of the Green Lanterns Corps or the other colored Corps. Granted, we didn’t need a detailed explanation… but something would have been helpful. It was just a thin read, and what we did get… I don’t think it was enough to hook the new folks. As a first issue of this magnitude, it just needed to be more.

I’ve seen a lot of comments (not about these six titles, but others) that said, in not so many words, the second issue was better. A hopeful thought, but not exactly a good thing when DC was putting a lot of bank on this slate of number ones. I can’t help but wonder if many of them simply didn’t suffer from too many cooks in the kitchen. We shall see, I guess.

Oh! I didn’t talk about the reading project. Hmm… maybe that’s because there’s simply not much to say. It’s progressing and I’m enjoying the titles across the line. Early 1999 was a strong time for the Superman Family titles (odd since the four Superman books themselves, to the best of my recollection, were pretty lukewarm).

I’ve also decided to add in Mark Waid’s run LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES (Vol. 5) when that comes up. Since I’ll be transitioning and following Superboy into TEEN TITANS (Vol. 3), at least to the end of Geoff Johns’s run… and Waid’s Legion kind of spins from that, courtesy of the TEEN TITANS/LEGION SPECIAL, it should be a natural extension, even if it’s not strictly Superman Family, despite Kara Zor-El joining the team in the last third.

November 1st, 2011  Posted at   The Thrilling Adventures of Superman

The Thrilling Adventures of Superman

Welcome to episode 44 of The Thrilling Adventures of Superman. The show’s mission is to explore the history and development of the Superman in his formative years by chronicling the Man of Steel’s Golden Age adventures in comics, radio and film.

Michael is once more joined by Charlie Niemeyer for a look at the third storyline, from the Superman radio serial! Superman goes into action to squelch a blazing inferno and try to rescue a trapped woman. But is there more to it than a simple fire? Find out in this six-episode story that leads Superman into an adventure that traverses land, sea and air!

And be sure to check out Charlie’s podcasts, Superman in the Bronze Age and Podcast of Justice! A huge thanks once more to Mr. Niemeyer for coming on the show.

QUOTABLE:
If the fire department can’t reach her, why do you think you can?
-Perry White (to Clark Kent)

The Superman radio show, obviously, doesn’t allow for scans of images from the story. However, here is a look at a couple spot illustrations, that accompanied the text adaptation of the story in the February 1941 issue of Radio and Television Mirror. (Unfortunately, I was unable to find a scan of the cover of that issue.) Click on the images for larger views, as always, in addition to their original captions. Art was likely done by members of the Shuster shop. Who penned the adaptations themselves, however, is not known.

Clark and June


Superman takes to the skies

Links mentioned in the episode:
– Listen to episodes of the Blue Beetle radio serial at the Internet Archive (the first thirteen star Frank Lovejoy, who voiced Captain Vincent Anderson in this arc, as the title character)

Download the episode directly. Or, you can subscribe to the show via iTunes or the RSS feed! Questions or comments? Additions or corrections? Drop a line! Share your thoughts on the episode and the issue. You can connect with show on Facebook and Twitter, as well, to get updates!

The Thrilling Adventures of Superman is also a proud member of the Superman Podcast Network. And don’t forget to check out the Superman Homepage!