Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Mantra Mondays: The Strangers #13

When this gets saved it will probably be Tuesday, but oh well.  Last Mantra we saw our Heroine kill one of Boneyard's three wives.  Instead of receiving that person's stolen Mantra costume, she didn't and Boneyard walked through a breach in the dimensions.  So why are we now looking at The Strangers comic?  Well, that is where we pick up Boneyard and his part of this Mantra story.

The Strangers are just getting back from some major adventure where a member called Yrial back and Member Bob has found a new artificial magic when the authorities have asked for help.  A plane is heading in with a hostage situation.  We find out that the Ultra that did the hijacking was Boneyard.  He is his gross self as we await the excitement.

Just when Boneyard is chastising The Strangers for allowing demons to enter his realm by their actions in the saving of Yrial, Mantra appears.  Big battle and the abduction of Bob.  The wives are there, but really not used.  Later Notch and the Boneyard Warriors show up with the wives to fight a bit.  It is an OK story, but kinda flat and moves in a jerky fashion.

There is a great bit of philosophical discussion of gender and how we decide and accept who we are as a person.  The entire talk was way ahead of its time.  Currently we have this discussion in our society.  It is still a volatile issue, but back when this was written, it was very do not write about such things.  For that alone this is a very interesting comicbook.  Needless to say, it will dive directly into the next issue of Mantra.

Price of this comic was $3.50 and of an extra size.  Back then it was a rare price and an event type book.  The flip-side contained what was called ULTRAVESE PREMIERE.  There was a short Ladykiller tale that is continued and an excellent small PRIME tale that really is about a discarded PRIME husk.  A small and elderly funeral home owner has found and used his craft to extend the shell of Prime.  He wears it and takes on the gangs making life in his neighborhood horrible.  It is one of those nice little stories that just makes for cool reading.

Well, it is just a few minutes after midnight, so this is a Mantra Tuesday I guess.


Monday, November 28, 2011

Hope to have these things this week Posted

I have the next Mantra Mondays ready to write and the images are saved.  I did have some older DCnU books ready for posting, but last night I left the USB thingies at the office.  I read Terry Goodkind's newest novel The Omen Machine this past week and will be posting about it before returning the book to the Library.

I am trying to balance many things and really want to thank those that check my Blog for updates.  I hope to get a better record going, it is just one of those things where I must always put the paying jobs and the needed things first.


Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Where was Mantra Monday?

I am still attempting to get my posting mojo back.  Honestly, today was a simple case of misplacing the next comic to be part of Mantra Mondays.  It is Strangers #13.  I got it mixed in with some of the DCnU titles and could not find it until I sorted all that out.  Add that the books I bought at my local shop's comic show mixed in and one can see what happened.  I hope to get back this Friday and next Monday with the regular stuff and make a decision on the tie between She-Hulk and Spider-Woman.

The issue of Strangers comes after we saw Mantra kill on of the wives of first Archimage and now Boneyard.  This death allowed Boneyard to access Earth and now he is here in the Malibu Universe.  Mantra has lost her original cape, armor and mask to the wives.  They were who it all was created for.  Now we have a crossover.  I was determined to stay in sequence since I acquired the issues along the path this summer.

Stay with me readers, I hope to be back on track soon.


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I am a Print Addict

I love prints.  I have many of the 11 x 17in that I have purchased.  I like these small ones though because I can scan them to share.  They also are easier to find frames for them when getting them protected and hang-able.
This Aquaman was from this year's Hickory ComicCon.  I love it.  The use of the Orange for the setting or rising sun.  The playfulness of the print is something else that drew me in.  Just a cool look.
It was a two for one price on the Aquaman print and the one that had to go home with it was this Phantom Print.  I love the character and this pirate ship piece was just a perfect fit for my collection.

The Hickory ComicCon event was where this Wonder Woman print was purchased.  I liked the simple look and the way the background is used.

Which lead to this year purchasing a Power Girl print by the same artist.  This is a really nice look for the lesser known character for mainstream people.

I bought a Harley Quinn print by this artist along with a Hulk print for a gift when at HeroesCon.  I saw this print of Mysterio by the same artist that I just had to get it.  This is a really neat drawing of a classic Spider-Man character.  I love pieces like this one.


Monday, November 14, 2011

Mantra Monday: Mantra #3

Since I am getting back into the swing of Mantra Mondays I decided to fill in the missing issue from this series look at the Mantra comic.  I picked this issue up this summer and just wanted to be a bit complete as we go forward.  So prepare to backtrack as we return to the early days of Lukasz becoming a woman.  He is the whiner of old and very mean to Eden's kids.

So Issue #2 had Lukasz taking little Evie and Gus to the movies.  The collector Strauss had sent these weird Repo Men after the Mask that Lukasz had stolen and now wears as Mantra.  So that is where the action picks up.  Mantra in her first real public battle.  She is now that smooth as Lukasz is still trying to be "the man" as he fights.  When he embraces Eden's natural magical abilities he Becomes powerful.  Soon the Repo Men are burning carcasses and Mantra is heading to talk with Strauss, leaving the kids behind.

Much of the book fills in some of my missing impression of Lukasz.  he uses Eden's womanly curves when it suits him and advances his quest to uncover the traitor in an attempt to get his maleness back.  This leads him to find two of Archimage's warriors that also survived.  They are in a blind black man and a dog.  The problem is that now a predetermined message and test has been awakened to put Lukasz through his paces as a magical woman.  Kismet is born and causes trouble for the warrior.

Who is Kismet?  Well, Archimage had this magic set up to create a being to test Lukasz.  Kismet formed after Eden and the kids walked past this Hippie type store, so she formed as a flower child with a wicked magical ability.  Kismet decides she wants to live, it was kind of cool so she wants Eden's body.  In the end she kills Hamath and Yaron, the warriors that had survived the betrayal of Archimage.  Seeing death, Mantra convinces Kismet to rethink the entire being alive thing.

One important thing this issue is the interaction with the kids.  Lukasz is really hateful towards Evie.  Gus takes it as just more of his growing resentment of his mother, but Evie is a smart little girl.  She is seeing the person behind the eyes and realizing that it is not Eden.  The way the kids act is very convincing and I want to stress that fact.  It is one of those parts that the creators are seen as really trying to do right by there characters.

So another Mantra Monday is in the books, and we fill in the missing issue.  If all goes well, we will get back to where we left off by adding the crossover issue with the Strangers.


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Aquaman #2

            How long has Aquaman been the butt of all the comicbook world's jokes?  Even those who are not readers and fans of comics make fun of him.  Maybe it was because of the cartoon version on the Super Friends or his own animated series that we have such a silly opinion of him.  When I heard that Geoff Johns would be doing the writing chores for the new series for the DCnU 52 I was excited.  Could Johns do for Aquaman what he had done for the Green Lantern franchise?  Well, issue #1 was a great start for a character that is constantly put down.  It even had Aquaman making comments about the silly stuff we always hear about him.  I was happy with that issue and was eager to meet the new adversaries that Arthur Curry would be facing.

            This issue is all about the creepy beings from the Trench.  The are odd looking and speak telepathically.  They seem single-minded in pursuit of food.  I did figure out that the leader has some kind of paralyzing agent he sprays on a victim.  Guess who gets sprayed at the end of the book?  These creatures are very violent.  They kill and eat.  Yet, they are not playing them as evil.  So far they seem like any sea life that would encounter humanity an see us as food.  Aquaman has his hands full.

            Mera is really a scene stealer.  She is a mixture of regal authority and child-like innocence.  You forget she can hold her own sometimes, but Johns wrote a few scenes here to remind us how awesome she can be.  Her water manipulative powers are shown in stark contrast in this issue.  She makes a gorgeous mermaid to go with her sarcasm in talking with a law enforcement agent.  Later she is cutting the creatures from the Trench in pieces as she fights for her life.

            This is a title you should be reading.  It has been well worth the $2.99 price.  I get to the end and am sad because I want the story to continue.  This is one book that is not a disappointment.


Voodoo #2

Mature Reader Warning

            Wildstorm was folded into the DCnU as a full participant of Earth Prime and the old WildC.A.T.S. Character of Voodoo received her own title.  Makes sense as DCnU is all about the sexual side of women with these relaunches.  Maybe this is the MAXIMization of comics.  Anyway, this title is definitely not for the kiddies.  In fact I would suggest no younger than 17 or 18.  It is like the difference between Public Broadcasting and HBO or Showtime in terms of content and what we are seeing and reading.  That said, it is a well written drama.

            Ron Marz is coming off his history making run on Witchblade.  He displayed an amazing ability to do the sexy style the Micheal Turner began, while also having smart and intelligent dialogue.  If he can strike that balance here on Voodoo, then the title could be a sleeper hit for the DCnU line.  It is a niche title for sure.  There will also be much discussed online in the months to come I believe.  Marz will be walking a line and we will see how close DC Comics lets him go.  This could be Fallen Angel the sequel. 

            So in the first issue we get the stripper scene.  This issue it is the post sex scene.  There is a real sense of the weird as our main character is a shape-shifter.  She also is a killer.  Maybe even an alien.  It all culminates with one humiliated Special Agent as I guess Major Force shows up and inflicts property damage. She may need blood to change into another person.  Still watching that aspect.  It is clear this will be a chase title as hunters are gathering.

            A character Marz is very familiar with is teased for next issue.  Kyle Rayner is pictured.  Could be a neat issue in terms of that pairing if that really is Major Force.


Friday, November 4, 2011

Flashback Friday: The Avengers #195

I was feeling kind of down the other day and just decided to go to the local Antique Mall.  I knew that there was suppose to be a new vendor with comicbooks and decided to check it out.  I found this little gem of a book.  After checking my list I confirmed I did not have the issue and decided to buy it.  I am a sucker for Ant-Man, Wasp, and Yellow Jacket in books.  It was a nice little slice of a bigger adventure.

The Wasp had been the only Avenger to not turn her back after a deranged man that came seeking help was taken by his health care officials.  She followed and had apparently been captured.  The Avengers spend the comic standing in the snow while Yellow Jacket and Ant-Man (Scott Lang) sneak in to see what happened to Janet.  They find her and aid in her release.  They kick butt and it leads to being captured again.  The best part comes next.  While making a bid to escape, the leader of the baddies decides to handle Janet by himself.  He tries to choke the "hapless" female and gets an uppercut to the jaw by our wonderful Wasp.  Later she takes out a guard by entering his ear and whistling.  It is just a outstanding comic for seeing The Wasp in action.

The end is something that will ensure my seeking issue #196.  The person behind the entire operation is the Taskmaster.  It is a great cliffhanger.  This is one of the best line-ups for the Avengers.  There was Captain America, Beast, Wonder-Man, Jocasta, Ms. Marvel, Iron Man, The Vision, and of course Yellow Jacket and the Wonderful Wasp.  It is a powerful assemblage.  I really dislike that The Wasp got left out of the Avengers movie.  She is a founding member and should be there.  That is what happens when we have to rely on the popular masses to get our movies in the theatres.  I wish Marvel would take the route DC Comics has and give us some top notch animated movies based on current and older story lines.


Thursday, November 3, 2011

A Well Said Comment On Loyalty and the LCBS

This is one of my favorite Bloogers that I follow.  She has an article at Newsarama about something many of us have dealt with, the loss of a Local Comic Book Shop.  Go and read it please:  http://www.newsarama.com/comics/hey-thats-my-cape-goodbye-comic-shop-111102.html


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Trunk or Treat

OK, so this first pic is hard to see.  One of my kids took pics for me and this is one he snapped of the back of my car.  I had him using my small Vivitar and it does not do as well as the light disappears.  We had a BIG evening.  Between 500 and 600 kids came through by my best guess.  We started at 6:30 PM and by 7:15 my 415 items had vanished.  We had candy issues but solved them thanks to the nearby Dollar General.  Sometimes meeting at a movie theatre and using the empty parking lot in that shopping center pays off.  It was a great night.

13 or 15 vehicles were there.  It is hard for me to keep track as the kids came and some of my folks arrived just in time because of work schedules.  I can say that Darth Vader had a resurgence as a popular costume.  There were less Power Rangers and the most Batmans I have seen.  I did have a fellow Green Lantern, it was John Stewart.  Optimus Prime was a leader in costume count.  I made three young ladies happy because I knew they were from Monster High.  It really is and was a fun night.

I know many people focus on the nastier and dark side to the time of year.  Christians forget or just do not know that we co-opted the time of year as a way to "steal" the celebrations for our own back in Ye Olden Times.  So much myth and legend have and were mixed to push the pagan Harvest celebrations away and implement the celebration of the Saints that now it can be a hard way for a Church to be involved.  The thing is, the kids we had were not about pagan folklore.  They were about the joy of getting treats and seeing the decorations.  It is a fine line sometimes, but this event has always been and always will be a way to reach out and show our local community that we as a church are a part of them.  It also provides a safe area for fun.

Last is Alf as my Larfleeze, Orange Lantern for those not in the know.  I wanted to make a Dex-Starr, but just didn't work out.  I did make a Blue Lantern costume for one of my Youth.  He still has my Blue Ring.  He better have it or I will be out of luck finding a new one.  Hope your Halloween was awesome.

Maybe I can get a post about books up soon.  Thanks for being patient.