SILENCE! #167

December 1st, 2015

 

 

THE TOUGHEST, AHH… THE TOUGHEST MAN IN THE WORLD

…he will come in one of the pre-chosen forms. During the rectification of the Vuldronaii, the Traveller came as a large and moving Torb! Then, during the third reconciliation of the last of the Meketrex Supplicants they chose a new form for him… that of a Giant Sloar! many Shubs and Zulls knew what it was to be roasted in the depths of the Sloar that day I can tell you…

Oh excuse me! Sorry do come in! What? No that wasn’t me talking…talking, ha ha, no I was sitting contemplating the serene beauty of this fine morning. Just me, my thoughts, and this fine morning. What? Have I got sh*t on my face?

<ITEM> Holy roly poly shlamoley! This is a very exciting episode of SILENCE! indeed. Why? Well I’ll tell you – not only are The Beast Must Die and Gary Lactus here with another hot pocket of podcastin’ goodness, with a gooey melt-in-the-middle of opinions but they’re joined by Bobsy. But wait. That’s not all. Who’s this poking his cheeky face over the horizon? Why it’s special guest pod-sprite, and comics mega-whopper BRANDON GRAHAM!! That’s right, it’s a red-hot four-way – a sandwich you know with a surprising filling. Kind of like cheese, pickle and octopus beak? But nice? It’s 2 hours of awesome amazing just for you dear listenoids.

<ITEM> But that doesn’t mean that we can’t have some good old admin – Dave’s Comics, Gosh Comics, and RX Comics from Vancouver?? Some special guest admin and then we’re away!

<ITEM> The Reviewniverse is bent into ungodly shapes to accommodate the four horsemen of the apocomicalypse, so there better be some big comics talk to match it. Well we got Frank The Tank Miller and DKIII and Uncle Alan’s delightful Providence. 1986 suckers! But that’s not all – there’s talk of Finder, Two Faces of Tomorrow, Steve The Dude Rude, Dark Knight Returns, Watchmen, Mr T, KRS One, Three Men & a Little Lady, Spiderwoman, Metropol, Battling Boy, Elektra Assassin, Lynn Varley, man-babies, Mutant Bieber Clans, Canada and oh so much more.

<ITEM> A special moral message from our guest and some of the finest singing you ever heard. And we’re done. You lucky, lucky people.

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This edition of SILENCE! is proudly sponsored by the greatest comics shop on the planet, DAVE’S COMICS of Brighton. It’s also sponsored the greatest comics shop on the planet GOSH! Comics of London.

27 Responses to “SILENCE! #167”

  1. Tracy Says:

    30:25 or so in to the podcast it gets really weird with a double audio feed or something?

  2. Gary Lactus Says:

    Fixing now. Thanks for letting us know.

  3. James Says:

    Funny Dr. Beast M.D. mentions Drive in reference to Lynn Varley’s DK2 colours – I always say that film’s a much better Sin City movie than the Sin City movies (a line I also trotted out for John Wick).

  4. Rick Vance Says:

    The talk of the 16 panel grid in DKR is the same effect that happens in those opening 10 pages of the final chapter of Watchmen when it opens wide and becomes breathtaking and horrific.

    Both DKR and Watchmen are comics that I read, decided I didn’t like for these cool hip youngsters (like GM) and both I came back a couple years later to enjoy so much more.

  5. Thrills Says:

    A pure cracking episode of Silence!, so it was. Brandon Graham seems like a thoroughly decent and likable chap with the healthy love and disdain of comics that fits this podcast well, in a way that perhaps some of the scoipy people didn’t (though I have enjoyed many of the SCOIP episodes, I have)

    Tons of stuff I could weigh in on annoyingly regarding this week’s episode but I shall not for fear of hogging the comments, eh.

    Particularly enjoyed the comics insider info about Hama and Rude. The more I hear about Larry Hama, the more I like him. Steve Rude, less so.

    Good Providence talk, and I agree that while the horror in the latest issue is effective and horrible, it is also a dodgy as fuck spin on the usual Alan Moore Director Trademarks. I also agree that someone should take him to task about this stuff, because it’s long since gone beyond a joke, to the extent that women seem to only exist in his comics to get assaulted.

    And as noted, it’s not really in service of doing anything interesting regarding a new way of looking at Lovecraft stories. It’s seemed for a few issues now that all that is going to happen to the main guy is he experiences some horrible stuff then goes ‘insane’, like all Lovecraft stories,with no real comment on anything.

    I’m assuming something horrible and predictable is going to happen between him and the women introduced in the first issue, too. Maybe a song will be involved, and some Aklo shit we’ll be expected to use the lexicon at the back of this issue to translate so we can all see how clever/moribund Angering Al is with his hardback RPG sourcebook stylings.

    Sorry, I am in a terrible mood as it is getting dark and I’ve not been outside the flat today, and also as Alan Moore needs to be better.

    POSITIVES: once this episode of Silence! finished, Cherish by Madonna was shuffled on by my itunes and it worked real nice.

  6. tam Says:

    Haven’t listened to the show yet OR read the latest issue of Providence, but one of the things I’ve noticed about a lot of the accusations of horrible things happening to women in Moore’s stories is that it’s often stuff which seem horrible at the end of the issue only to be given a different, more ‘acceptable’ explanation during the following issue, such as the Invisible man and Mina during LOEG or Neonomicon.

    This means that people who read the trades and see the next chapter immediately are liable to be far less offended than the more obsessive fans who have to wait a month between chapters. Presumably Moore’s perfectly aware of this and I have a strong suspicion that he just enjoys ‘non digital trolling’ the nerds like me who frequent comic shops…

  7. Aaron Says:

    Laughed embarrassingly loud on the train at “Northampton’s Beard Magus”

  8. James Says:

    Thanks for a very thoughtful, measured and insightful chat about Providence. My initial reaction was a fair bit more forgiving, intimidated as I am by Alan Moore comics and the fear of criticising out of my depth. I think (the collective) you are right about the potential benefits of taboo, Moore’s liberal nose-tweaking/outrage-baiting, and the lack of a satisfying “why” for it all.

    Sing-a-long-a A-Team and Buck Rogers: These could exist for the same reason that the original Star Trek theme has (SILENT!) lyrics – the lyricist gets 50% of royalties from the song, presumably even when the words aren’t sung.
    http://www.snopes.com/radiotv/tv/trek.asp

    Incredible pod, all in all. Brandi Gras was predictably excellent value, and lovely to hear from Bobsy as always. x

  9. Adam Says:

    That pick by Brandon up top makes me chuckle

  10. James Says:

    It’s a beaut, 3 uncanny likenesses.

  11. Illogical Volume Says:

    It’s a peach of a pic, aye – yet more excellent work from the man Brandon Graham!

    Great pod this week folks, I think Brandon brought out the artistic in Gary and The Beast during that DKIII slap-down, and while nothing can make reading that boring piece of shit worthwhile this discussion came close.

    Shout outs to The Beast’s point about Lynne Varley’s DKII colours being ahead of their time, that didn’t just influence/anticipate a lot of comics colouring (from Jamie Grant’s luminous lighting to the toxicoloured wastelands of Brendan McCarthy’s resurgent work) it pre-empted all sorts of garish internet imagery (Seapunk, the sodding New Aesthetic), probably a few movies and music videos (lol, remember the 90s?).

    Like Gary and The Beast, I’ve definitely come round on The Dark Knight Strikes Again. It’s a total mess, of course, but of all the attempts to re-connect superhero comics with their innocence it’s certainly one of the weirdest and most dissonant.

    I also think that Brandon brought just the right variety of opinion to the Providence discussion, which covered the bases – admiration of the craft of the piece, repulsion towards what was being depicted, annoyance at the smug gamesmanship behind it plus a genuine attempt to work out what sort of aesthetic/intellectual goals might allow the reader to think all of this worthwhile.

    As the SILENCE! regulars know, I spent a fair amount of time chasing down that point, finding the various perspective games ultimately fairly shallow (“ah but don’t you see, here you are victim, perpetrator, voyeur and bystander all in one – you may not find any of these positions desirable, but you contain all of them within you and to pretend otherwise would be folly”) and the quest to figure out my own levels here ultimately unsatisfying as a justification.

    What I do find quite curious is how all of the latent possibilities of the comic seem to have soured for Bobsy and The Beast. I say this not as a dig because hey, I’m right there with them, but it’s funny how one big “what the fuck are you doing here Alan?” moment can make you question all the other areas where you’ve given a book credit.

    Dug Brandon’s points about the 13-year-old not looking like that too – was this maybe one of the rare occasions where Burrows’ art has failed to restrain itself in the service of Moore’s script?

    Anyway: good stuff all round, and Brandi’s welcome back any time as far as I’m concerned!

  12. Illogical Volume Says:

    SAY MORE? Aye, why no?!

    Empowered is the classic “book you can easily justify reading but generally try not to because it looks like you’re protesting too much” innit?

    You know how he Beast Must Die was talking about attachment to characters in/around SCOIP? I hadn’t realised it until I listened to this podcast, but I think Empowered‘s one of the few ongoing series that really works for me on that level right now.

    Good to hear Finder getting some love too. Mystery Date was my first exposure to the comic, and I still remember the thrill of discovering that the annotations only added to the spiraling complexity of the work, that sense that I was encountering an intellect that was both totally unconstrained and yet weirdly systematic… genuinely one of my favourite comics.

  13. James Says:

    “Dug Brandon’s points about the 13-year-old not looking like that too – was this maybe one of the rare occasions where Burrows’ art has failed to restrain itself in the service of Moore’s script?”

    It’s a reasonable question. Burrows’ lifeless mannequins work really well for things like the library sequence, and his precision must be a big part of the appeal for Moore. Knowing what his scripts are like you have to assume the shots and action are exactly as described, but there’s no way to know if Burrows was left to his own devices on physical appearances without seeing the one for this issue. Not a particularly appealing avenue of investigation, obviously.

  14. Rick Vance Says:

    If one or both of you have not you should check your fine comics providers for the first couple volumes of One Punch Man which should be out now.

    I expect you will enjoy it quite a lot.

  15. Cass Says:

    I just asked my good pal Brian “Before Watchmen” Azzarello what he thought of the pod (sorry, he makes his friends call him that). I expected him to be upset about the Dark Knight review, but actually he was much more bothered by Brandon’s superior talents as a punster.

  16. Tim B. Says:

    re DKII colouring, didn’t Frank Miller essentially get DC to pay for Lynn Varley to learn computer colouring, which is a move you have to admire regardless of any aesthetic judgement IMO.

  17. Erstlaub Says:

    Another splendid pod, thanks all.

    Holy whuuuuut! The French A-Team (The All Risks Agency) has lyrics?!?!

    http://previously.tv/the-a-team/france-added-lyrics-team-theme/

    And they are amazing!

  18. Cass Says:

    Wanted to add that I loved that Beast came out as a Sandman hater this episode. Like him, I’ve tried to read Sandman at several different points in my life, and every time I’m worn down by its ponderousness and how much it’s in love with itself. Every page seems to be saying to the reader “Ho ho, but did you consider this, my young squire?” To which I want to respond by throwing a brick. I’ve felt bad about this in the past, since even people who dislike Gaiman’s later stuff tend to find Sandman unimpeachable. It’s a relief now to know that I’m not alone in hating the Dreamsqueezer’s magnum opus.

  19. The Beast Must Die Says:

    It’s true. I am Dreamophobic.

  20. John Bishop Says:

    Top ‘cast gents! I am shortly due to undertake my first time complete reading, start to finish of Sandman, but every time I listen to SILENCE! I am looking forward to it less and less. I read some of it (years ago) and think I might have liked it. I know I liked that Orpheus thing with the glow-in-the-dark cover. Well, I liked the cover.

  21. The Beast Must Die Says:

    Even the Dream Laureate could not resist the allure of the SPECIAL COVER. Let’s not forget the poly-bagged, lenticular, 3D holographic, die-cut cover where you could ‘RUB THE DREAM’!

  22. Nate A. Says:

    I think Simon Hanselmann insists on calling Mr. Graham Brandi. And if it’s good enough for Simon Hanselmann, it’s good enough for me. By the way, I don’t recall any of the boys discussing Megahex. I’d be interested in hearing their thoughts, especially Bobsy’s. It’s an incredibly heavy read, punctuated by dark(ish) stoner humor and lightened by an eye-pleasing drawing style . You should check it out.
    And thanks, by the way, for falling on the DKIII sword. The whole thing looked like a dog’s breakfast to me… I’m tempted by the minis, but I’m not going to line DC’s pockets to get them.
    Finally, great guesting by Brandi. Remember, if you trip on something during your next Reviewinverse, it’s likely his sex-stick.

  23. thesaintgodard Says:

    While I think the concept that Moore’s angling for overall– there are no nameless unspeakable shoggoths poncing around just outwith the squamous boundraries of our perception, it’s simply a bunch of fucking horrible humans who’ve attained immortality –is fair and fairly interesting In Theory, the execution hasn’t enthralled me overmuch. Mainly due to the endless retreads of Moore’s favorite temporal jiggery-pokery (premonitions, punny dream sequences, polyptyches). These gimmicks are more interesting in other hands, nowadays– I see naught that Alan’s done to innovate them since his Top Ten graphic novels. When he uses them they stink like the pad of a crippled Dickensian begger’s crutch.

    Willard remains my favorite nasty thus far. Certainly Barrows’ best work throughout the series, design concept-to-execution. Too bad we only got five pages with him.

    I genuinely appreciate the concept of all the wizards in Lovecraft being basically a bunch of O.T.O. assholes feuding over who gets to be the Secret Outer Head and conjure a Moonchild. It’s certain that if immortality ever does come to pass we’re done, as there’s nothing worse to my mind than a venal bastard unconstrained by death, able to exercise his pointless penile fancies across the millennia. So it’s not a *bad* premise. It’s just that I wish we were dealing with it via some character other than this extremely vanilla Audience Identification Model. Robert Black’s a boring gay man, a frustratingly hack writer (if his commonplace book is any indication), and worst of all he’s perhaps the most confoundingly unintrospective jew I’ve ever read.

  24. Justin Victor Says:

    I’ve been enjoying your continuing discussion of Providence and was excited to eventually get the trade, but yeah, this sounds like pretty dicey material. I’ll be curious to hear everyone’s thoughts as it wraps up. As far as Moore not adding anything new to Lovecraft’s themes, I noticed something similar with his Supreme stuff. I struggled through about half of that run earlier this year and was really kind of shocked at how content he is with just regurgitating Silver Age tropes without much comment beyond vague condescension.

    As for that other mid-80s titan, at the risk of losing all credibility, I’ll admit I’ve never been super into Frank Miller and have only read DKR once ages ago, so I approached DK3 as a bit of a curiosity and not the sequel to a personally formative reading experience. I can’t muster much vitriol against it but it is sort of bland and definitely feels over-priced and oddly constructed as an object, and it’s surely a bad sign that Azz and Miller are arguing in public about who deserves more credit for the series, even in DC’s own house ads! I kind of liked the scene where Superman’s daughter talks to his frozen corpse, but I doubt that will be enough to get me to come back for another issue, at least not at full price. Kubert is actually my favorite member of the creative team. I enjoy him in the same way I do Liefeld, but I think he’s more technically proficient overall. I didn’t mind the size changing minotaur one bit.

    The most remarkable thing about the issue to me, is that it shows WW’s exposed breast, even if it’s in partial silhouette. This seems like an unprecedented amount of nudity for a big two character and while I’m not personally offended by it, I’m surprised the comics internet isn’t in more of an uproar. It does seem like the kind of image that might have been cynically placed to illicit furor but it appears to be largely ignored.

    By the by, Larry Hama has also briefly appeared on M.A.S.H and Saturday Night Live.

  25. alan moore Says:

    https://factsprovidence.wordpress.com/moore-lovecraft-comics-annotation-index/obscenity-alan-moore-and-the-miller-test/

  26. Cantinho da BD #94 - Não Percas Says:

    [...] com Dylan Horrocks, análise de DKIII e Providence no Comic Books Are Burning in Hell e também no Silence! com Brandon Graham (King City) como convidado e para acabar Craig Thompson entrevistado sobre o seu [...]

  27. Some Suggested Reading About Providence | Facts in the Case of Alan Moore's Providence Says:

    [...] has some worthwhile episodes discussing Providence: #4 (starts at minute 26) and #6 (Moore mentions start at minute 40, after some false starts Providence talk goes on at minute [...]

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