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A Thought Process on Out of Print Comic Collections and The Options to Get These Books

I woke up this morning to a question about why certain collections at DC Comics go out of print. Especially ones with Barry Allen, Wonder Woman, and other characters that you think would never go out of print. That’s something I’ve always pondered too as I remember seeing the Secret Six books for example go out of print for a long time until the new collections. Sometimes certain books go out of print because they’re planning a deluxe edition of a book, new collections adding more material, omnibuses, and sometimes a book just goes out of print for no good reason. It’s the same with Marvel too. Heck if it is a book that doesn’t have a wide appeal and gets reprinted, I’d recommend getting that as it will end up going out of print. The really niche stuff that gets reprinted I find goes out of print before you know it. Don’t even get me started on Humanoids, seriously that company if you don’t pre-order those suckers they’re out of print faster than you can blink. Seems to me they’re trending more towards digital collections nowadays though so at least that much, that’s cool at least.

For most collections at a comic company, they’re pretty much a lock to stay in print for awhile. Now with Marvel and DC there’s usually the HC (Hardcover) then after awhile the TPB (Trade Paperback) hits after that. Now with most books say Watchmen, Dark Knight Returns, and so forth, they will never ever go out of print. Same with Marvel as they have their collections that will never go out of print too, Civil War for example. Of course the one factor with DC and Marvel is they both do have robust digital options that if you don’t mind a digital copy of a book, you can get it that way. Marvel has Marvel Unlimited so you can also read a lot of out of print stuff that way too. Same with most companies now if you can’t get a certain book in print, you can usually get it digitally via Comixology, Amazon, or other digital comic selling companies out there.

At least now there are ways to get books that are out of print. Back in the day if a book fell out of print you were going to be doing some hunting. Heck there are still many books that aren’t available digitally so you still have to do some hunting for certain series out there. Good luck in your out of print trade hunting adventures, hopefully I made it a little easier. A good question on twitter led to me writing this and was this ever a fun thought process to go on.

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Spoiler Filled Thoughts on X-Men: Days of Future Past

You know I never realized but I had the perfect title for my spoiler review series hidden in my blog files. Spoiler Filled Thoughts was initially used as an extension of my reviews. That didn’t work out as well as I would have liked. On movies though this may work, trying this out with X-Men: Days of Future Past. Enjoy being my guinea pigs as I revive this. If you want an actual review of X-Men: Days of Future Past, simple version is I liked it. It’s not perfect but I do consider this film to be The Avengers of the X-Men franchise. As clarifications, I don’t think it is as good as The Avengers but it is The Avengers for Fox’s X-Men franchise. After this the spoilers begin at full speed ahead. That’s right kids, no spoiler left unturned I am spoiling this movie so much right now. If you haven’t seen X-Men: Days of Future Past yet I wouldn’t recommend reading further. Now if you have seen it or don’t really care to see it, welcome aboard feel free to read onward. Let’s get the Spoiler Filled Thoughts out there to the world! Welcome to my Spoiler Filled Thoughts on X-Men: Days of Future Past.

(Extra Spoiler Barrier here just in case, you have been doubly warned in bold. As I am now going to bold this for extra effect.)

Okay, so everyone that’s still here now we can begin my Spoiler Filled Thoughts.

First off, as I mentioned on twitter but was I the only one who noticed the Future Sentinels were The Fury times infinity? Take a look at that design and then notice The Fury, that can’t be a coincidence. If you’re a reader of Secret Avengers, The Fury did just recently pop up in that series. Initially the Fury came out of Captain Britain as Alan Moore and Alan Davis created it for that series in the UK. The Fury is the ultimate weapon and I saw the Future Sentinels and thought about that one. Besides I love the concept of The Fury, so if the closest thing to The Fury is in X-Men: Days of Future Past, works for me.  Of course as I talk about The Fury I know at least a few of you have no idea what I’m going on about. Totally groovy, hunt down the Captain Britain material or early bit of Chris Claremont’s Uncanny X-Men run in 2004. I recommend reading if you’re curious to know more.

Now as for the rest of this movie, I love how it eliminated all the less popular of the X-Films from the franchise. Now the series can be pushed onwards into X-Men: Apocalypse with at least less baggage involved now. Yes there are issues with the X-Men franchise at Fox still but it’s in a whole lot better shape than it was. This was the big send off for the original cast and when I saw Cyclops and Jean Grey pop up at the end I laughed. I loved those final two appearances as likely it’ll be the last time either James Marsden or Famke Janssen ever appear again. We’ll likely see Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, and Hugh Jackman again but everyone else is easily up in the air. Outside of the First Class cast that’s still alive, Quicksilver, and hopefully other characters getting more screen time.

Note this too, I lost my mind at seeing En Sabah Nur/Apocalypse on that screen. As the crowd was chanting his name I about lost it, then the reveal of Apocalypse and pan over to the Four Horsemen. Good lord, X-Men: Apocalypse is already showing that this is going to be a massive epic in scale. The big part of seeing X-Men: Days of Future Past was seeing Bryan Singer to a full blown superhero mega fight at a large scale, it worked. This film was training for what X-Men: Apocalypse has in store for us. At least they can now get a strong focus on this film, the story is course corrected now we can move on. We have scale, we have story, now put it all together to make X-Men: Apocalypse the amazing film we all know it could be.

By the way, who didn’t love the line Quicksilver gave to Magneto about his Mom? That was hilarious, I still wish we could have gotten more Quicksilver in the movie but I’ll take what I can get. Who would have imagined that from that costume and goofy commercial, Quicksilver would turn out to be great? I was one of the doubters myself, in a big shiny way I was a doubter. Now I leave myself in the state of mind that dang it X-Men: Days of Future Past, your Quicksilver was amazing. I did love the slo-mo scene by the way, that turned out well in my opinion. Even better that Sanford and Son saved the world in a way, that cracked me up so much. The reactions of the security guards were priceless, especially one just getting into the show. Quicksilver and the entire Pentagon sequence was a major win.

The future is now X-Men Franchise, Fox is doing better with it than Sony is with Spider-Man right now that’s for sure. X-Men is primed and ready for the future of the franchise. X-Men: Days of Future Past was a better film than anyone imagined. At least Fox is showing that with the X-Men now, they know what they’re doing. Now anything can go haywire with this franchise there at any time, for right now we’re in good shape. Onwards to X-Men: Apocalypse and the hope that the movie turns out awesome.

A Comic So Bad, It Nearly Broke Me: Uncanny Avengers Annual #1

Sit down a spell, Wesley got a story for you all. On Rhymes With Geek I elected to review Uncanny Avengers Annual #1, I thought it would be fun. Now I highly recommend you read the review on the site before going forward. Click here, read on and you’ll get a full sense as to what I went through with the Uncanny Avengers Annual. Here’s a simple fact about me as a reviewer; I don’t score a comic low lightly. If I’m scoring a comic low that means ultimately the comic left me empty and wasted my time. Like most reviewers I enjoy comics, I like talking about them and enjoy looking over a book to find what I like or dislike about a book. After all reviews are opinion so why hold back if you like or dislike something? Love it or hate it with all your might no matter what your opinion may be.  In reviewing the Uncanny Avengers Annual, I was not a happy camper. Any poor soul who caught me online during the period I was reviewing this comic got to hear me rant, a lot. In a way I was processing what to say about this comic, free thought ranting was the only way to get through it.

Uncanny Avengers Annual #1 was one of the worst comics I have ever read. As I said in the review, there are people who I’ve read reviews of this book who liked this. In my final edits of the review late last night I found reviews raving and just as angry as I was about this comic. I would say my rage was more primal in wanting to tell people to not waste their money on this comic. Editing through that review was one of the harder things to do because it is harder to write a bad review than a good one. My perspective on the good review being easier to write is that I’m excited, I’m happy, I cannot wait to tell to world to buy this comic. Even if I have some small problems with the comic or whatever it is I’m reviewing, it’s still worth your time to check this comic, book, tv show, or some such I’d review. Now for a bad one, in my mind I’m trying to find the words to say in a professional manner, this comic is not for me.

My dear friends that were online during my review of the annual got to hear my unfiltered thoughts. Yes to some of you out there when you read this review you may want to buy the annual, it’s intriguing to buy a book that infuriated and annoyed while enchanting other reviewers. Even my review only scratches the surface of how bad this Uncanny Avengers Annual is. Uncanny Avengers Annual #1 is one of those comics hit me at my core of what infuriates me about comics, a pointless and worthless story. That’s why it nearly broke me, that’s why it left me angry, and that’s why I will not be reading Uncanny Avengers for a long time. One comic is all it took to swear me off of Uncanny Avengers. This is my personal blog so I can be a bit more blunt here. The best way to finish this off is simply, Uncanny Avengers Annual #1 was a tidal wave of bad and if it did a number on me, imagine what it’ll do to you.

My thoughts on Marvel NOW!: The Further details of the Kieron Gillen/Greg Land Iron Man

In reading the Newsarama article about Iron Man, we finally start to get the details on just what the Kieron Gillen written and Greg Land drawn Iron Man #1 will be about. Let’s face it, I like Gillen’s writing for the most part, it’s really the Land factor that makes me unsure of this one. I can’t hardly hide it, I’m not a huge fan of Greg Land’s artwork. I used to be back in the day when he was working on Birds of Prey, Nightwing, and up till he started to develop his current style in the midst of Sojourn via Crossgen. Now knowing the details behind this series, I am curious as to where this story could end up taking itself because really, there are some good ideas here.

Gillen’s Tony Stark for one has immense potential. Taking Stark to his basic elements will be a lot of fun to watch. It seems that Gillen really is embracing the international playboy factor that Stark has within him.  The one thing I absolutely love is the fact that he’s aiming for done in one stories for his early issues. Gillen is not just embracing Tony at his core but also making it easy for new readers to pop on throughout any point within the first few issues. I love the fact that also Gillen is going to be introducing new villains to the universe and that’s something that’s sorely needed. New blood isn’t a bad thing and by golly Iron Man could use that dash of new blood. We’ll see how a lot of this plays out.

The Land factor is going to be weird. I’m willing to give the first issue a go based off of the potential of Gillen’s story, but Greg Land is my teeter totter. One part may be up, but the other part can easily go straight down for me. Some people though absolutely love Greg Land and others like myself started the term LANNNNDDDDD!!! in reference to what we think of him on occasion. Me, I don’t like him but at least I can say that I will give this a fair chance. I’m not going to miss out on some cool ideas just because I’m not a huge fan of the artist, I’m not one to just straight up dismiss a title just because of one factor, at least anymore anyway. I used to have more of that in me, but I’ve mellowed in my older age, okay I’m 30 but you know still that is older age.

Marvel NOW! looks to be an odd situation to say the least, Iron Man has potential on this round. We’ll see what further developments happen with the other titles in the weeks to come. All I know is this, I’m hoping this works for Marvel, I really am. This is their answer to the New 52 and more power to them if this works as well as that did initially for DC Comics. I’m all about a successful comic industry and anything that helps grow the audience, I am all for. We’ll see come November if Iron Man will be a big hit for Marvel and if the Kieron Gillen and Greg Land team will be a good for the series.

 

 

Thoughts from your Humble Host: Grant Morrison

http://robot6.comicbookresources.com/2011/11/comics-college-grant-morrison/

I just took a read of this column off of CBR and I have to say this is interesting to me. Cracks me up that I actually have a good chunk of this material in one way or another. This for the most part is a solid look at his work. There’s some great reading in each of these things mentioned. Especially the Invisibles which by the way if none of you out there have read the Invisibles, do yourself a favor and find the trades immediately.  I got mine in a random adventure at Half Price Books in which one day I went in with a buddy of mine and there they were. Every single volume of the Invisibles right before me. Which inspired one of the weeks in which my brain felt it got rewired. Within all the ideas represented here with the sheer inventiveness of the story comes a mind melting event of awesome that has to be experienced.

By the way I like that usage of words, mind melting event of awesome. That’s cool.

Morrison’s We3 is actually one of my favorite stories of his as I own the TPB of it as well as the deluxe hardcover edition. By the way I recommend grabbing the hardcover edition since that one is just chock full of great material. I’ve had people I know who don’t read a lot of comics read We3 and get to wanting to read more from there. Mixed in with the fact that there’s so much amazing material from him out there that we’re going to get into something that’s been much talked about and argued about at times, his current Action Comics run.

I’ve done two reviews of his Action Comics so far, which I’ll link below,

http://www.mycomicnetwork.com/v2/2011/09/action-comics-1-grant-morrison-gives-us-his-take-on-superman/

http://www.mycomicnetwork.com/v2/2011/10/action-comics-2-superman-captured/

I’m kind of an oddball with my views on this series, I genuinely like it. What caught my eye so much with this is the fact that this series feels natural to what it would have been like for Superman to appear in our time. I think Morrison is building piece by piece the current version of Superman and there’s not as many mad ideas but we’re getting there. The next issues are going to be where Grant starts to cut loose which the Legion of Superheroes showing up. I didn’t get to do a review of issue 3 but I did like it quite a lot. Gene Ha’s view of Krypton was a thing a beauty and it’s Gene Ha doing this, you knew it was going to look great. Give Action Comics a shot if you’re curious about the series by the way. It is a good read especially if you think back to the early appearances of Superman.

The one goal of mine at some point is to grab all of his New X-Men Ultimate Collections and just read through them. Same with finishing up his Doom Patrol and Animal Man runs. All three have been on my hit list for quite a long time. I’m also going to finish up this post here as I can’t think of anything else at the moment. Till next time!

 

 

 

Conversation Piece: The DC New 52 and beyond

We’re now in the first full week of the DC Relaunch. There’s been a lot of great things coming out of this relaunch thus far, nicest bit being all the conversation about comics that’s sprouted out of this. Every day on twitter, there’s always some new conversation sparking from this. It’s starting to perk up in circles that are outside of the normal crowds. People are starting to get curious and this is a good thing. Now the ultimate test is going to be if this material keeps them going long term. We’re all curious but if that curiosity spreads into crowds outside of our own even better. I feel we’re in the midst of a paradigm shift, where things are looking like they’re truly starting to go somewhere and it seems for the better. We hope so. For there is a lot of good going on, there’s excitement in the air, people are asking questions, people are wondering how this is going to work, and for all the bad there is a lot of good.

Now as the New 52 spreads, this feeling should spread further into the rest of our fair industry. I’m just small cog in the comic machine yet this is an industry I feel passionate about, I love talking comics, I love reviewing comics, and with all this energy flowing around it’s been perking my energy back up to new heights. We’re starting to enter a better world for making better comics. I feel as if I’m part of a new world, a truly brave new world of comics that can only get better. Every day I come online for all the things that aren’t that great in my own life, I instantly get recharged by all the conversations around me involving comics. There’s an equal amount of positive and negative. The nicest thing being that there’s a conversation. Surprisingly civil too, which amazes and makes me quite proud of the things I’ve witnessed. Even if they disagree with something you say, at least you all know you’re both comic fans and that you can agree to disagree. We all have to realize that we’re all comic fans. We all love reading about these characters, seeing what they’re up to, and in turn love when new ideas sprout up that give us new characters to embrace. From the New 52 initiatives, to Marvel’s events, and to the limitless ideas coming out of Image, Boom! and many other companies. It’s all comics. We have a lot of amazing books coming out right now. My goodness, you have Marvel with Spider-Island which has been one of the best events they’ve done in quite a long time.

Everyone has amazing things going on right now, and that’s what I’m noticing more of on twitter, and in general internet chatter. We’re having to learn to focus more on the amazing. There are a lot of people who can’t focus on that, yet it seems that the level of people realizing how many cool things are going in comics are balancing this conversation out. I’m a little guy in this chatter, yet even if I don’t like something I want to explain why, and I’ll at least read something before I instantly condemn it. I don’t like the look of the Teen Titans costumes but am I still going to read the comic? Yes I am, for I want to see if this ends up being a good story. I’m not a big fan of Rob Liefeld, yet I found myself loving the Infinite and will end up taking a look at Hawk and Dove. There’s something to be said about this. We’re working on making things better, and I want to be part of making things better. Though really if anything amazingly stupid pops up I’m not going to hesitate to comment. Right now though, we’re at the dawn of something that could turn out to be amazing. From the New 52 to this spreading like wildfire into everything else that makes this industry great. Let’s see what happens and keep making comics better.

And now for something completely different! Storytelling thoughts

This is something that popped in my head as I was watching the new Jesse Stone movie tonight. The one before it was a slog like nothing I’d ever seen before. Something along those lines of I was falling asleep and I can only tell you just enough to remember the last movie was poorly paced. This movie however was a whole different story in which you actually got a bit more invested into the story itself and the pacing was so much stronger. You could appreciate further as to what the movie had to say and in turn you wanted to keep watching. Initially I was just going to watch a piece of it at a time but as I got to watching I found myself watching the whole movie in one go. Interestingly enough it does get me to thinking about other things that have pacing issues in itself.

Right now I’ve been working through the Thor collection of the series For Asgard and I find the art from Simone Bianchi beautiful but the writing on it is a slog like nothing I’ve ever seen. Every time I go to read it I can only read it in small chunks because it feels like a bit of a chore to read. I’m almost done with it so I will finish it but it’s not something along that line of I must finish this right now. Storytelling in general has been on my mind a good bit considering everything I’ve been seeing around me. I’ll give you another example of storytelling that didn’t work for me. Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides was a movie that my expectations were low for to say the least. Honestly I am still glad I did keep them low considering the fact that the general flow of that movie was off by a long shot. The first half of it felt muddled. It felt as though like okay here’s our slapstick and fun and oh isn’t that wonderful. It just didn’t have that sort of uumph to make me get invested into the story. Now the second half I’m not going to lie I liked it mostly for Blackbeard because Ian McShane rocked that role and that’s when the movie actually started to work for me.

This post is probably going to feel a bit random since it literally is me talking about storytelling of different things that have been on my mind. For in every medium you have to think that there is storytelling. Going back into TV for a moment I’ll let you in on a little secret about me in the fact that I do watch a decent bit of it and try and keep up with a few different shows. I’ve watched it all from crime dramas to science fiction. I always tell people I’m a bit of a jack of all trades when it comes to my entertainment. Comic Books, TV, Video Games, Books, and Graphic Novels have always been an equal part of my life. Video Games for example I just recently bought the entire Sam and Max series since it was one of my favorite Adventure games when I was a kid and I’ve been wanting to get into the newer series of it. Probably my favorite time of Video Gaming was the adventure game age. I think it’s why a good story in a game will compel me as much as one action packed adventure. Of course my curse with say RPG’s is I’m a leveling up junkie so I can never complete them because I get so into doing everything else. True story on that last one.

I’m going to close this post out for now since these thoughts are a bit on the all over the place side but it’s literally a compilation of different things that have been on my mind with storytelling. Take care guys and as always you can find me on my twitter feed @iamcomicaddict and my reviews are on mycomicnetwork.com.

The adventures of Marvel: The observing of Fear Itself.

This is going to be different than what I do on mycomicnetwork.com. This is not as much a review though my opinion on it will be reflected. This is more a look into the first crossover event of Marvel I’ve picked up in quite awhile. I didn’t touch Shadowland nor anything else with it outside of a couple issues of Siege last year. This is more my own look into Fear Itself for the aspect of how it could hold over the long haul as a mega event. For this is the first big bad holy mother of all mercy event that Marvel has done in awhile. The thing that caught my eye initially with Fear Itself was the fact that I like the writer and it’s Stuart Immonen on the art side so if I’m not a big fan of the story then I’ll be guaranteed one amazing art experience. What I didn’t fully count on is really getting into it like I did.

Here’s the way I think about it this could have gone one of two ways. For this was either going to scream cash cow or actual good story just with one huge budget if you want to use action movie terms. What you got out of this was strong looks into the general aspects of what could scare you in the Marvel Universe right now. It’s going for more the thoughtful approach to how life is in the Marvel Universe. The big focus of it being you have the Gods on Earth still dealing with the after effects of Siege and the destruction of their Earth home. While on the other side there’s a strong human element of the town of Broxton, Oklahoma that’s suffering because of the lack of jobs in that area. You get metahuman and human elements at the same time.

I think it’ll be interesting in the midst of the battling with Sin and her newly embraced Hammer of power mixed in with the human side of this whole affair. I call it almost stealth message. For in the midst of the big battles to come if the balance can be kept with the human element of this story this could be one fascinating little look into the universe at large. For I loved the Fear Itself: The Home Front. That was seriously amazing work from all involved. I think this is what gives you the vibe that this is going to be just as human a story as well as a superhuman one. For like I said in the midst of all the as you’d put it giant smashy that will go on there will be a lot of great looks into the minds of everyone involved. The home front book alone has great stories probably one of the better of the anthology sort of books. Three solid teams on each story and it’s about as impressive as you can get. I think that this is starting to scream “This is more than what you’d think!” and I like it. Since on my own website I think someone else is doing this I’ll be doing my own sort of perspective on it. As I put in an earlier post I’m just starting to get back into it over the past year or so and it’s been one overall pleasant experience. It’s what has me buying anything retro marvel I can find in the process. Just wait till Flashpoint comes out you all I can only imagine what that crossover will bring us to come. For so far the curse about that book is the creative teams for the book are all over the place but I digress.

I’d love to have some discussion on feat itself either via twitter or comment section. So feel free and pop me a line!