February 18th, 2014
I’VE GOT AN UNCONTROLLABLE URGE…
Hello camp councilors Welcome to Camp Spam! I’ll be your resident favourite lumbering backwoods maniac, Disembodied Slashbot X-15735! Are you ready for a long hot summer of canoodling, light drug use, and half-baked attempts at childcare…? There are just a few ground rules to keep in mind however; make sure you do don’t get separated, don’t run around in your skanties, don’t make fun of the locals, don’t mock urban legends or local superstitions, don’t diddle each other on a haunted native American burial ground, don’t run off into the woods trying to entice your boyfriend or girlfriend into a bout of impromptu midnight streaking, and whatever you do DON’T BE FEMALE!
Other than that we can all look forward to a happy summer of carefree kicks and denim hotpants. So settle down round the campfire while we tune our radios to Gary Lactus & The Beast Must Die and the latest edition of SILENCE! I’ll just nip off and sharpen my machete…*ahem* I mean fetch the marshmallows…
<ITEM> A glorious longform admin, with sponsordrizzle, and a discussion of both Harvester restaurants and The Chapman Brothers
<ITEM> A song in our hearts and we’re through, through, through to the Reviewniverse…taking on allcomers with reviews of Ms Marvel, She-Hulk, Juice Squeezers, Stray Bullets, Walking Dead, Punisher, Wolverine, Fred Savage, How I Met Your Mother, The Royals: Masters of War, Batman: Black & White, Batman, Astro City, Secret Avengers, Justice League of America, Captain America, and Jason’s Hey Wait…
<ITEM> Just time to detach the Reviewniverse, for the Beast to big up his new favourite site Dc Comics In The 80s, the brief tease of Gary Dimbleby and The Beast Must Dimbleby, and then it’s lights out…for summer.
(RIP Bob Casale:
January 28th, 2014
I SIT AROUND, WATCH THINGS WITHER. RETRACE MY STEPS LIKE THE LAZIEST RIVER
AHAAARGGGHHH! Batten down the hatches Jim-Lad! This be the Disembodied Barnaclebot X-15735, come to brace your mainsail, buckle your swashes, shiver your timbers and poop on your deck. Disembodied Barnaclebot X-15735 will only ask once matey…will ye let me and my crew of scurvy spambots aboard your cyber-galleon? Of course ye will mayeys of course ye will…otherwise I’ll keelhaul the whole internet! HA HAARRGGGGHHH *cough* HARGGHH *hack*…splutter. Blast yer eyes, Captain Birdseye never faced such brazen rebelliousness.
Onwards then mateys, onwards across the cyber-waves of the Sea of Snark, as we head towards the desert Island that is SILENCE! and those filthy landlubbers Gary Lactus & The Beast Must Die…
<ITEM> Admin a-go-g0, as the pair discuss mutual sponsorship, Itunes reviews, cardboard ABC Warriors, Alison Sampson’s Genesis, Michael DeForge’s Ant Colony and technical tips from internet handyman and all-round hot comics talent, Chuck (The End Of The Fucking World) Forsman
<ITEM> A chord is struck and the Reviewniverse is entered….Dark Horse Presents, Brendan McCarthy, Mick McMahon, Prophet, Hawkeye, Brian Wilson, Batman, Rocket Girl, The New Invaders, The Walking Dead, Six Degrees of Flaming Carrot, Mighty Avengers, Judge Dredd: Mega City Two, Zero, Black Mirror, Dark Angel, Deadly Class, The Midas Flesh, Dead Body Road are all covered…
<ITEM> There’s a bit of Harmontown Again and a quick discussion of Gelding before the two are made to walk the plank, and not before time too!
PIECES OF HATE!
PIECES OF HATE!
December 18th, 2013
Special “Two years late and several thousand Bitcoins short” Edition!
People still do linkblogging, right? I mean not here, not recently, but elsewhere. Feels like a holdover from the “internet as big magazine” approach to broadcasting into the void, and given that I’m too scare to commit myself to any other model that suits me just fine!
EMBARRASSING ENTHUSIASM DEPT: You read it somewhere else first, but we’re in a celebratory mood in Mindless HQ anyway, so fuck it – STRAY BULLETS IS COMING BACK!
It’s too early in the day for me to get totally shameless on this, so you’ll have to go read that interview to find out about the massive collected edition of the first forty issues, the continuation of the old series, and the launch of a new one. Suffice it to say that Stray Bullets is the best, most unsettling crime comic out there, and that we’re glad all those kittens weren’t sacrificed in vain.
If you’ve not red the series before, issues #1-4 are apparently free to download right now, and Zom (or “Ad Mindless as he now likes to be called) wrote a piece about issue#1 that should set the scene just nicely:
A car speeding into the night, a lonely county road, as an establishing shot it’s hardly setting a precedent. But the first panel in SB #1 transcends its over familiarity by actually saying something meaningful about the book and all that follows it. This is a story that will make good on the panel’s familiar metaphorical properties. What we need to keep in mind here is that this road is black, to see anything we’re going to need a torch, and that things probably lurk in those woods. For that matter, things probably lurk in that car – what’s it doing out there in the dark, anyway? The world of Stray Bullets is a dangerous place, and the road travels on until you die.
We should also consider the notion that Lapham doesn’t want to simply transcend cliché, that he’s keen to set-up certain expectations in the reader. So later, when the tires on the car blow out and that familiar scene with the cop and the dead body in the trunk rears it’s head, we shouldn’t be surprised at the lack of novelty on offer. What’s interesting about all these little genre ticks is that, by issue 2, you could be forgiven for forgetting you were reading a crime comic in the first place, and that’s a recurring pattern throughout the series. The effect being that just when you think you know where you are Lapham pulls something entirely unexpected out of the hat, and suddenly definitions like ‘crime fiction’ start to feel inadequate or in serious needs of revision. If I was hunting around for words to describe Stray Bullets #1 I’d eschew genre definitions and settle on adjectives like macabre and gothic.
MISSING PERSONS DEPT: Free Batman/set Batman free.
For serious though: this is the best(/most horrible) Batman comic I’ve read all year, the tactically deployed evil of Batman Incorporated notwithstanding. Twitter account here, if you’re interested.
August 15th, 2013
If the first volume of Batman Incorporated exploded out of the gloom and propelled the character back towards life, then the second iteration of this latest re-branding was a far different proposition.
Every stage of Morrison’s Batman has followed a similar trajectory, starting off light-hearted and energetic before eventually plunging right back into the overarching mega-plot, and with it, the grand absence that unifies the whole run:
In the previous two iterations this has entailed an increase of complexity, either in the form of the deconstructionist absurdity of Batman RIP or in the twinned conclusions to Batman and Robin and The Return of Bruce Wayne. Batman Incorporated 2.0 represents a different approach. This final flourish of Batman comics represents the ultimate reduction of all that had come before, with the stresses of the plot compressing these twelve issues down to the barest element as it plays out to its logical conclusion: a man in a cape punching people in the face forever.
July 16th, 2013
This week, still bereft of The Beast Must Die, Gary Lactus goes on a quest to find him. His journey takes him into a lonely Reviewniverse where he mutters to himself about Tank Girl: Solid State, Daredevil, Justice League, Hawkeye, Young Avengers, Superman Unchained, Batman, Ghosted, Astro City and Avengers Arena.
Then we venture into a whole new realm baring little or no relevance to the already fairly loose remit of SILENCE! Gary Lactus’ manufactured alter ego Fraser Geesin talks to lovely Dan Fardell about comedy, the Man Of Steel film, Ivor Cutler, Ron Geesin and other stuff. Dan is currently filling in for Kerry Herbert on Kerry On Comedy, every Tuesday 3pm on BHCR.
May 13th, 2013
WILL YOU GO TO LUNCH? GO TO LUNCH. WILL YOU GO TO LUNCH??
Why are you always picking on me Mother-Brain, when I have been a good little Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735..? I haven’t mind-flayed any fleshy ones, and I have been thinking good thoughts 010001001011010010…
Onwards, forwards and inwards to innards listening ones, as you take a big breath of SILENCE! into your virgin pink lungs and…
<ITEM>Sponsorhip Boys, Sponsorship Boys…plus the jangle of jingles and other etceteras.
<ITEM> SILENCE News with US news-trolls Gary Lactenberg & Danny Beastman, covering the next 12 months of eyeball-scintillating DC Comics!
<ITEM> Me, Julio Gary & The Beast down by the schoolyard, reviewing comics! Actually it’s the Reviewniverse: They don’t review Prophet, but do it in a kind way. But then they DO review Avengers Assemble: Age Of Ultron (from Affable Al Ewing), Avengers Arena, Justice League of America, Suicide Squad, Wolverine (Smug Cover Alert), Batman, Uber, Katana, Thor: God Of Thunder, Avenging Spiderman, Uncanny Avengers and 2000AD.
<ITEM> Jason’s Challenge is Infinity…will Gary be man enough?
<ITEM> An all singing review of Walking Dead
<ITEM> Savoy Books curio Michael Moorcock’s The Jewel In The Skull in The Beast’s Bargain Basement.
And that is the very lot you sorry bunch of cry babies. Go back to your mudhuts and scrabble for grubs.
April 16th, 2013
WHY DO WE STILL LIVE HERE, IN THIS REPULSIVE TOWN?
Blah blah blah fleshbags, Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735, podcastic postulations etc
<ITEM> No Silence! News, but much jinglage, in thanks to the financial resuscitations of the many SILENCERS out there. Beastman & Lactenberg come in from the cold next week, yes?
<ITEM> Sponsorship Special – The Beast Must Die (in his human skinbag form, Dan White) will be at this year’s Free Comic Book Day at Gosh! Comics.
<ITEM>Wade up to your knees in comics in the Reviewniverse with 2000AD, Indigo Prime, Saga, Wolverine, Batman, Avengers Arena, Walking Dead, Secret Service, Constantine, Hawkeye, X, Sex and a special consideration of giant cosmic toga-wearing baby, The Beyonder.
<ITEM> Then, wade a bit further out, till the broiling waters of the Hyperrevieniverse tickle your conkers…Avenging Spiderman, Age of Ultron, Avengers Assemble, Saucer Country, Thor, Uncanny X-Men and Fantastic Four.
AND NO MORE! So get out of here, go back to your flesh-pens and weep. Leave Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735 to his vintage basic-coding pornography and printer-ink martinis…
March 18th, 2013
Yeah, umm… yeah, no… Yeah, sorry it looks like Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735 isn’t working. Sorry, Gary Lactus here. Right. This is SILENCE!#53… No 54. SILENCE!#54. Me and Beast read some comics and talked about them. Get excited! Woooo! Cor! I’m waving my arms around merrily! What a lovely time we’re all about to have as we listen.
February 26th, 2013
HENRY SWANSON’S MY NAME AND EXCITEMENT’S MY GAME!
Here he comes to save the day, Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735 is on his waaaaaaaaay!
I’m here now flesh ones. What is the problem? Oh that’s right – there was no SILENCE! last week. Boo hoo. Many fleshy tears were shed. Weeping meatsacks. Well rejoice sad misery-beef as The Beast Must Die and Gary Lactus bring you special comics suppositories for your earholes!
<ITEM> The SILENCE! News with Gary Lactenberg of the stretched handbag leather skin, dazzling smile and shark-eyes, and Danny Beastman of the cigar ravaged voice and rheumy whisky-rinsed gutter eyes. Hot newzzz indeed.
<ITEM> The Reviewniverse opens it’s gaping maw and sucks the pair deep into it’s 4-colour belly pit. And swilling around in it’s intestinal inks are…Hellblazer (the final issue no less), Justice League of America, Vibe, Katana, Nova, Sadow: Year One, Judge Dredd, Superior Spiderman, Daredevil, Captain America, Daredevil, Fatale, Powers, Avengers, Justice League, Change, Batman and Michel Fiffe’s deeply wonderful action comic COPRA!
So you see, it’s not so bad. Life continues fleshy ones. And remember, even when SILENCE isn’t here Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735 is here. And he can see through walls. And skin.
January 22nd, 2013
ANOTHER SELF PROCLAIMED HISTORIAN, WITH EINSTEIN AS A PASSENGER, AND A FLUX CAPACITOR IN HIS DELOREAN…
This… is… the voice of….Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735! Wooo! Scared you, you silly rabbits! Ha Ha, Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735 is all messed up as he has been drinking fermented battery acid and snorting big lines of pixels all afternoon…Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735′s wife left him you see, taking all the little Narratorbots with her..
NOT REALLY! Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735 is confirmed bachelor! NOT REALLY! Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735 is not even confirmed male…or human. Concept of love and marriage is as alien as the whirling purple dust motes of Jupiter, or the cold dark bottom of the Marianas Trench…Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735only likes hard facts, and of course SILENCE!
<ITEM> Usual masturbatory introductory fol-de-rol. YAWN@SILENCE
<ITEM> SILENCE News with 1950′s news-hunks Danny Beastman and Gary Lactenberg, covering the annual Comics Readers And Producers award ceremony. Swoon!
<ITEM> Moonwalk into the Reviewniverse covering Black Beetle, Saga, Batman, Daredevil, Indigestible Hulk, Fashion Beast, All New X-Men, Lot 13, Craig Yoe presents Haunted Horror, Captain America, Captain Marvel, and Judge Dredd Case Files, with added discussion of painted art by Dermot Power, Dean Ormston and Colin MacNeil (‘The Dream Of The 90′s..”)
<ITEM> Mrs Schwartzberg reviews Savage Wolverine by Frank Cho
<ITEM> Beast’s Bargain Basement covers Strange Case of HP Lovecraft – hear him froth about Tony Salmons!
<ITEM> Talk of Utopia and Shaky Kane’s ‘That’s Because You’re a Robot’
<ITEM> NO MORE! Now clear off you meddling kids. Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735 has some etherware to smoke.
Special thanks to Roberty Boberty for contributing to this week’s episode.