SILENCE! podcast #5

March 7th, 2012


What? What do you want? You want to hear hot shit talked by two hot guyz? Well you came to the right URL true believers!

In this scalding 5th episode the Beast loses his job as a Transformer, but not before he drops his latest musical gem ‘O Transformer!’ Meanwhile Lactus stretches out on his cosmic sofa and relaxes into the hazy bliss of a heroin high!

But Not Just That! They talk about comics, including speculation on Morrison’s upcoming HAPPY!, Chaykin’s Black Kiss 2, Spaceman no.4., Fantastic Four: First Family, The Twelve no.10,  Orc Stain no. 7, Shade no, 5, Jason Aaron’s Incredible Hulk, Criminal, discuss Chris Weston’s meaty art, the annoyingness of comics covers that look the same each month, and Lactus takes one for the team and reads Robocop: Roadkill. Poor Lactus. Add in the Mindless News, the Coming Attractions and some shameless self-promotion for Cindy & Biscuit no.2 and you have a guaranteed sonic prolapse to brighten up your life.


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26 Responses to “SILENCE! podcast #5”

  1. Thrills Says:

    Happy! does indeed have a bloody awful logo.

    I think the big problems with Robocop comics are that they don’t have either the Robocop music, or Peter Weller’s acting.

    Watched the first two Robocops again recently. 1 is still ace, and while I’ve always had a soft spot for part 2, it seemed kinda rubbish this time around (though Peter Weller is great). I know Frank Miller sort of wrote it and ‘the man’ diluted it, but it still has yawnsome Millerian disdain for those wet liberals who think criminals are actually human beings. I remember part 3 as being PURE MILLER in that it has robot ninjas, and I never want to see it again. Plus, no Weller!

    Leave it to Chance was a pleasant comic. Totally forgot about that.

    That Marvel editor chap doing the internet rounds would be great if he was like the old UK Transformers comics, and he did it in the persona of Dreadwind or Grimlock. But not Blaster.

  2. The Beast Must Die Says:

    Grimlock would improve all message boards

  3. Illogical Volume Says:

    Good podding boyce!

    I’ll forgive your broad generalizations about us Scotch because deep down inside I know that blood & tits are as essential to the average Scorchlander as oat cakes & despair. If they ran a story about oaty horrorbaps in Red Lanterns, I don’t know that I’d have any reason to keep on living…

  4. Anonymous Says:

    All the scotch clans are a bit like the various coloured lanterns. Tartan lanterns. Oh yes the now.

  5. amypoodle Says:

    Orc Stain #4 is without a doubt the most enjoyable comic I’ve read in an age.

    The orc telephone sequence was amazing. The way the speech bubbles were treated as a diegetic object that could be zoomed in and out of/could advance and recede. I also loved the message passed through all the different orcish environments before getting sucked down the fortress-tank’s funnel, and then the final spread with the SHKA!s tumbling into the vast throne room.

    I also like – the way everything speaks in this book. There are no sound effects, just speech bubbles. It’s all orcishly alive.

    And – the fight between the Swamp Ramba and the witchy assassin orcs was great as well. The head bomb was especially good.

    The sleepy thing the Swamp Ramba wears as a coat. So labyrinth. That’s great too.

    The Swamp Ramba’s off-colour sexiness. Her yellow smile.

    The way she keeps shifting between friend and foe.

    The frying eggs. Urgh.

    Yep, Orc Stain.

  6. Ad Mindless Says:

    So here’s the thing:

    Poodle read some King City and said that much of the world building and plot suffered from that whimsical arbitrary quality that makes everything feel like it has no weight whatsoever. Hence me not picking it up.

    What say you?

  7. Igmus Says:

    I actually have thought about doing a sketch based on the song about the Thing’s thing. Haven’t gotten around to drawing it, though. Wonder if any of my old crayons are still good?

    Steve Wanker has been an ass on message boards for a few years now. I saw him on the CBR forums a while ago, and he seemed to be playing some sort of dunce/village idiot role, without realizing it. He does tend to pick arguments with people who actually have reasonable criticisms of Marvel. It seems to be some sort of company-line type thing in which he tries to diffuse valid criticism by making a lot of noise and a lot of ad hominem attacks and such. It seems that some zombies are VERY starstruck by him and will follow him anywhere online. He’s still a good editor, but a total fool/shill/ass. Same with Tom Breevort. I still buy a few books with their names on them, but I don’t LIKE seeing their names there.

    Lastly, VERY disappointed that the latest issue of FF wasn’t discussed in depth on this episode. I stopped buying that series after Fantastic Four proper came back, but I was hoping to rely on Mindless Ones to tell me all the good stuff that is surely happening in it.

  8. Gary Lactus Says:

    FF wasn’t that bad actually, just thought we’d be better off talking about something else after last week’s Fantastic Four trauma. DO US A SKETCH!

  9. Gary Lactus Says:

    I’ve done a sketch of The Beast Must Die as a Head Master. It’d be so cool to have a Thing’s Thing there too.

  10. Thrills Says:

    I did a sketch of The Thing using part of Mr. Fantastic’s stretched body as a condom, but figured no-one should ever see it.

  11. Jog Says:

    Ad/Zom – I suppose the best I can say is if that’s what you’re after, that’s how you’ll be disappointed.

    I think something that’s bound to get lost with King City is that chunks of it date back to the mid-’00s, at latest, and that it shares a lot of aesthetic space with works going back a decade further, comics that generally concerned themselves with interactions between young characters and their deliberately ‘small’ personal dramas; there’s not a lot of plot in these comics, and the sci-fi trappings exist primarily as decorative externalizations, if they carry any metaphoric charge at all. If you’re looking for density of ‘ideas’ (let’s say), you’re not gonna find it – you’re gonna find puns and fancies and emotions and attractive in-panel stylings, mostly, coupled to a fairly straightforward plot that sort of exists in the background for half the book.

    Again, this is essentially the character of most of Graham’s work; it’s only with Prophet that’s he’s really riffing hard on genre comics in a direct manner at all. A lot of the rest of it’s focused on the pleasure of filling in spaces, visually, and detailing character interactions… I’m tempted to say it’s more “art comics” than the conversation surrounding Graham would suggest, but it’s really quite perfectly in line with some of the wispier, slice-of-life-ish manga I’ve seen, if working through a very cosmopolitan set of visual influences.

    So, yeah – it’s about feelings and moments and vibes and chats and pining and drawings and drawings FAR more than plot or world-building. That doesn’t make it ipso facto superior — I mean, I didn’t think so four years ago when I read the old digest edition of half of it ( — but I think it’s something that should come out.

  12. Ken Quichey Says:

    King City is like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles but much, much slower.
    Self-consciously hip, post-Vaughn Bode graphics combined with a dreamy, vague, pick’n'mix kind of approach to genre ingredients.
    I started to get into the flow of it eventually, but I’d read about 150 pages of it by that point.
    It’s too decompressed, and not in the high-shutter-speed manga way that you might expect, it just trickles by, all but aimlessly.
    Borrow it though, it’s not bad, just a bit of a superficial pleasure.

  13. Ad Mindless Says:

    Joe, I don’t need plot or worldbuilding from my ents n arts (although some commentators have talked up the worldbuilding aspect, so I was kinda expecting that), but I am slightly allergic to things that skew heavily towards whimsy, or that – worse – dress whimsy up as worldbuilding. Particularly dislike whimsy through an adolescent/young adult filter.

    I can just imagine myself flicking through it muttering “dinnert care… pretty… dinnert care… pretty… dinnert care… silly…” etc.

    Should probably cut back on imagining myself reading comics and then judging said imaginary comics

  14. The Beast Must Die Says:

    I just bought the trade. It’s a beautiful fucking thing.

  15. J_Smitty_ Says:

    Re: King City TP-ohfuckitspretty-B

    I come to it from mostly a capes and tights background and I’m mightily impressed. All the things that Jog says I will take as true fact. That said, as someone coming in from the outside it was an incredibly energizing experience to read it all in a go.

    Really great for me and a fantastically unexpected consequence of Wacker’s screed. I walked away from Marvel and really committed to searching for something different. Again, I know KC is pretty old but it was coming out when I was “on hiatus” and it feels pretty right to me at this point in my reading life.

    Also currently pounding away on Eddie Campbell’s collected ALEC (comixology $10 for 600+ pages).

    Campbell did all the scanning himself so it’s as true as it’ll ever be in the format. Only about 3 books in but really nice “small” stuff. Place and time. The power of friends and inertia.

    Thanks again for all you do.

    Sub – Dan, does 5 cover international shipping for both Cindy and Biscuit books under the two issue dealy? Or, if I order via the sep. pages can you ship together to save a few?

  16. Ad Mindless Says:

    One day I’ll buy that ALEC. I keep meaning to

  17. Thrills Says:

    ‘Alec’ is totally on my purchase list, as well, but I keep forgetting about it and getting stuff with bright colours and punching.

  18. The Beast Must Die Says:

    J Smitty – Aye can do. I need to set up a US payment button for the two issue dilly, but for now if you buy separately I’ll cut you a deal.

  19. Illogical Volume Says:

    King City is a lot of people’s idea of a perfect comic, but I doubt it’ll be yours Ad.

    I still think you’ll like it a lot, mind – it *is* gorgeous, it’s funny, there are a couple of moments of unexpected horror, and Graham manages to suggest a busy world while still leaving a lot of blank space on the page, so as to prevent the reader from feeling overcrowded. If I was an English Lit professor trying to seem cool I’d claim that it’s got a lot of the sort of off-hand inventiveness and wit that’s more common to hip-hop culture than comic book culture, but I’m not, so let’s pretend that I didn’t.

    It’s just… there’s a sort of hip whimsy to the whole thing, and I reckon that they way it’s weighted will stop you from ever properly loving it.

    Alec is pretty much my idea of a perfect comic.

    Like J Smitty says, it’s real good on the small stuff, but there’s plenty of big stuff in there too, if you know how to look:

    There’s also something really enjoyable about the way that Campbell’s shifting perspective is highlighted by the breaks in the narrative, i.e. by the way that he’s separated his adult life into books. Andrew Hickey has argued rather convincingly that The Fate of the Artist and A Disease of Language are stronger works, and they’re certainly more upfront with their ambitions, but there’s a real pleasure in being able to hold so much of Campbell’s artwork in your hands at the one time that puts that big Alex book over for me. You find yourself noticing how many different tones those scratchy little lines of his can evoke, and how neatly he’s developed his own storytelling rhythm over the years, to the extent that you can’t tell if the words are leading the pictures or the pictures are leading the words.

    In short: I give it a million brains out of five.

    (SILENCE! would receive a similar rating if only Gary Lactus and The Beast Must Die would mention me more often – this episode was a good start, but I want to be a regular fixture like Botswana Beast. Maybe I just need to be a bit more interesting first? Hmmm.)

    Orc Stain #7 is an all singing, all stabbing monster of a comic book. I don’t know how Stokoe has arrived at this evil Miyazaki style, but compared to this comic everything else I read this week just seemed dead.

    Robocop is.

  20. tam Says:

    Really entertaining show as ever!

    Just to mention The Boys is getting really exciting again and definitely worth returning to if you like stuff like James Ellroy; it’s basically turned into American Tabloid with superheroes. Along with Judge Dredd’s current ‘Day of Chaos’, it’s pretty much the only comic I’ve read in years where I really, really want to know what’s going to happen next, because there’s a sense that literally ANYTHING could happen. Right now, it could even be about to move into apocalyptic ‘crossed’ territory although I doubt Ennis would repeat himself so soon, so maybe not.

    Don’t read the latest issues until you’ve read the last trade, (‘Proper planning and Preparation’) because they won’t make much sense. You don’t really have to read the previous few trades which were mostly treading water, (despite some genuinely poignant character moments scattered between the increasingly dull superhero parodies, especially in ‘The Innocents’) although all the world-building is making what’s currently happening all the more powerful. The story has just dramatically moved from the shadows to the point where the whole world has just found out the truth about the superheroes and the stakes just keep rising with the final issue just a few months away…

  21. tam Says:

    Also, one of my favourite things by James Robinson (and lovely art by Steve Yeowell) is 67 Seconds. One of those long-out-of-print-and-very-hard-to-find-but-only-costs-about-a-quid-when-you-finally-do type books. Really good alternative history story. It harks back to a lot of genre pulp fiction but in the English rather than the US tradition and it’s a real shame it’s never been republished

  22. igmus Says:

    @Gary: I probably will pick up FF in trade eventually, because the discounts are insane. I theoretically like the idea of the kids having their own adventures, as long as Doom is involved in a sort of “bad uncle” role.

    ‘Alec’ is great stuff. You can find the volumes for quite cheap, so I’m not sure the digital version is much of a deal. I’m not anti-digital, but something like ‘Alec’ seems like it should be a very paperly experience.

    By the way, this podcast has inspired me to go back and read more Brit-penned early Vertigo. Just bought a mess of Ennis Hellblazer and Milligan Shade the Changing Man.

    PS. UPDATE ON THE THING SKETCH!!: Still haven’t done it.

  23. The Beast Must Die Says:

    Ennis’ Hellblazer run is a high point both for the writer and the character. You won’t be disappointed. Likewise with Shade, it’s Millligan at his peak. Especially if you’ve got the ‘Hotel Shade’ stuff.

  24. J_Smitty_ Says:

    “You can find the volumes for quite cheap, so I’m not sure the digital version is much of a deal.”

    I couldn’t so I bought the digital.

    I get the whole “papery” experience thing but vs. the cost of the collected edition (which was the only alternative available and that via ordering, sitting, drumming the table while waiting) it’s quite a large value.

    Plus, I’m reading it now and Mr Campbell is xx the richer for it.

    Tangentially, comics via the pad actually cuts much closer to the grocery store impulse buying habit of my youth than the proper shop experience these days.

    Companies should ABSOLUTELY take note of that advantage – small market companies and creator owned properties especially. Eliminate the cost of printing as well as the cadre of company slags (Executive VP of what the hell ever – Cebulski I’m looking at you) and you have MANY built in technical and economic – if not aesthetic – advantages over the printed page.

  25. Igmus Says:

    Hm, maybe I’m wrong about the (printed) ‘Alec’ collections being easy to find for cheap. I just remember buying them all for like $4 each a year or so ago.

    Yeah, I’ve read some Ennis Hellblazer–excause me, HECKblazer–and Milligan Shade before. It’s great stuff and I finally realized that I need more of it.

  26. Kit Says:

    Top Shelf remaindered-to-consumers the four Eddie Campbell Comics collections of Alec material ahead of their own ginormo book coming out. The ginormo has heaps of pages that aren’t in those, btw.

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