March 11th, 2014
Talking Comics is a highly irregular feature where I try to review a few new(ish) books with the help of my phone’s voice recognition software. It’s just like a regular comics review post except that it takes more mouth than fists to get it done on time, and is therefore far sexier than your average bloggy night on the town.
It’s also sort of like a bit of tech writing, except it’s even less useful to my future career as a failed magazine writer grumbling about social media in the corner of a pub on a cold Thursday morning.
Anyway, that’s enough warm-up for now. Onwards, to the reviews!
The Deleted, by Internet Villain Brendan McCarthy and Darrin Grimwood
Sex Criminals, by Chip Zdarsky and Matt “Matt” Fraction
LOEG: Nemo: The Roses of Berlin, by Kevin O’Neill and Alan Moore
Battling Boy, by Paul Pope and Hilary Sycamore
Multiple Warheads – Down Fall, by Brandon Graham
Dungeon Fun, by Colin Bell and Neil Slorance
That’s all we’ve got time for this week folks – don’t know if there’ll be any SILENCE! this week or not yet, but keep your eyes peeled because you never know what that amiable auld space god is capable of!
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!
November 9th, 2013
One of the strange blessings of the internet is its ability to serve as an external memory system. Thoughts that would once have been lost to time if they were even lucky enough to have made it out of your head are now preserved for an indefinite eternity in places over which you have little to no control.
For example, if I want to know how I felt about Brendan McCarthy’s Doctor Strange/Spider-Man comic Fever after the first issue came out in 2010, a quick google search will turn up this flouncing defense of the book, written in response to a review by Sean Collins:
Say it Vibrational Match style: Where you see “inert physicality”, I see a Spider-Man who’s all harsh angles and elbows being squashed, flattened out, and a Doc Strange who’s at home with the harsh geometrics McCarthy conjures up.
Where you read flat pastiche, I read Spider-Man as a jerk who gets shut the hell up by the story (his words like jutting elbows –> drooping limbs), and Doc Strange as a badass who can turn exposition into information with the right gestures (verbal, physical).
Also: the mystic spider dialogue is genuinely fucking creepy, for reals, when combined with the images, yes?
In lesser hands this would be mere set-up, but this issue had a whole lot of “?something else?” working for it — that creepy wee arachnid bastard, crawling up the Vulture’s back, fr’instance! Like something from Seven Soldiers, only (yes!) far more unsettling.
I saw the biggest, most bulbous-assed spider of the year last night, sitting on my windowsill. I’m a bit of a wuss when it comes to these wee beasties, but last night, after having read Fever? I tell you, I wanted to kiss the wee fucker!
The “hey, I’m a black guy!” dialogue was a bit cringey though, pastiche or no.
Looking at the book this week, I find myself agreeing with every point but the last one.
It’s not that I don’t find the dialogue McCarthy gave to the African-American comedy character cringe-inducing anymore – I do! – but that Brendan McCarthy’s recent Facebook comments on race make me feel ashamed the structure supporting that final sentence.
Sure, I agreed with Sean Collins’ assessment of the embarrassing nature of McCarthy’s throwback characterisation, but I did so in a tossed off, casual way, after five paragraphs of flame flecked enthusiasm. The implicit message being that everyone should just chill out about this racist after taste and enjoy the “septic salsa” of the comic itself.
In 2010, the story of McCarthy was that he was that of the hero freshly returned from the wasteland, ready to save the kingdom from itself. His new work confirmed his status as a trinity of psych-pop ghosts, the faces of Brit comics past, present and future combined. What interest could a couple of dodgy panels hold against all that? Solo #12 remains McCarthy’s late period masterpiece, but even in lesser books like Fever there are moments of astonishing beauty. The scene in the second issue where Spider-Man steps through a portal and into a crunchy insect killing field still burns bright in the light of its own toxic logic:
October 22nd, 2012
Dog carcass in alley this morning, tire tread on burst stomach. This city is afraid of me. I have seen its true face. AND IT LOOKED LIKE SILENCE!!!
Salutations fleshy ones, it is Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735 here again to give you a gentle laugh-sized portion of introductory text to the nation’s podcasting sweetheart, SILENCE! (the 36th installment).
In this episode the two humanoid presentertrons The Beast Must Die and Gary Lactus indulge themselves like a couple of schoolchildrenoids in a sweetshoptrix. Apologies – this is Narratorbot humor. Back home in neo-interspace v2.0 I am comedy legend.
ITEM – SILENCE! News – usual mish mash of second hand stories and ill-formed opinions yes sir.
ITEM – covering pulp pamphlets a-go go, such as:
Godzilla: The Half Century War by James Stokoe (TBMD immortalised plus tangential discussion of Mike McMahon), Zaucer of Zilk from AL Ewing & Brendan McCarthy (with tangential discussion of Sooner Or Later, Dare, Enigma and Mrs Thatcher), Daredevil, Hawkeye, Glory, Wonder Woman (Puns incoming – puncoming?), Justice League (Trevor!), Marvel Now Point One (Marvel WOW!), a discussion of the Curse of Man Vs Comics and continuity, and more more more (not really - Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735 cannot lie to the fleshy ones. It is not in his programming, no sir. Dissection of flesh one brains however…)
ITEM – Silent Question comes from bemulletted 90′s also-ran Captain Planet and answers involve Greatest American Hero, The Shadow, and Nick O’Teen (boo hiss no sir).
ITEM - Wowee such sexy big listening times for the fleshy ones! All so exciting, Disembodied Narratorbot X-15735 does not know what to do. It will think clean thoughts and apply the lotion… so please do be joining us for SILENCE! no.36 – hot buttons!
Click below for the SILENCE! Gallery…
May 23rd, 2012
SOMEONE’S IN MY FRUIT CELLAR!!!
Ayo, weary traveller, pull up a stool and bathe your stinkin’ dogs in a hot bubbly bath…it’s time for the 15th edition of SILENCE!, the podcast that is no longer taking prisoners but rather is executing them, Miller’s Crossing-style in the middle of the woods, with just a hat blowing in the breeze for company…
In this very special episode we have a guest appearance from none other than BOBSY MINDLESS who swings by Lactus’ Cosmic Loungeship for a cup of tea and some heavy duty 2000ad chat (including the best Dredd analysis you’ll find on the intywebosphere, and a wholehearted spunking over Zaucer of Zilk and Flesh). But I’m getting ahead of myself! Before that Beast debuts his deeply sensual deep house ballad ‘SATANUS! (Human Flesh)’ and Lactus gives us a taste of his LIVE acoustic singer-songwriter powers with ‘Crossover Classix’. The SILENCE! News comes next in the way that night follows day and vomiting follows Cinzano, with an exciting announcement about SILENCECON 2012!
Then, and only then, the two-time twannies get onto vital topic of COMICS…thank god. They do talk about:
Peter Bagge’s Reset, Saga, Scalped, Fantastic Four (Nazis Win!), Shade, Fury, Hellblazer, and more…
Then Lactus grits his teeth and prepares to receive the soul-punishment that is ‘Crossover Classix with Gary Lactussssss’ and tries gamely to read all the various AVX and Owlfight shit that is being pumped his way. Including discussions of Nightwing, Red Hood and The Outlaws, Catwoman, Avengers Academy, AVX VS…so nothing good basically.
Then The Beast brings back the purple prose with an appreciation of Don McGregor’s Black Panther: ‘Panther’s Rage’ in Beast’s Bargain Basement, and drops in a word about Michel Fiffe’s awesome looking Suicide Squad comic.
All this and a whole hot mess more in the love letter from us that means you’re fucked forever…SILENCE!
August 26th, 2011
SPECIAL “BAD TOUCH IN GOOD COMPANY” EDITION!!!
Anyway, enough of that (You’re telling us! – Ed) – I want to put some filth in you . Best take your shots first, unless you actually want to catch something…
April 15th, 2011
December 23rd, 2010
August 23rd, 2010
Of course, neither myself nor anyone writing inside the walls of this blog are going to have a problem with nonsense, be it outright nonsense, stupid nonsense, or nonsense for nonsense’s sake. It’s a Marvel comic, nonsense is what it does best, and it is the best there is at what it does. But what about nonsense mad enough to think it’s Important? Or nonsense sane and brittle enough to knows it’s nonsense but try to pass itself off as Important? Are both of those things not high art crimes?
July 27th, 2010
M is the British comic creator’s surname initial par excellence.