Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Radio Free Id 

This is just some stream-of-consciousness stuff here. Pay it no mind.

1. WHY does everyone take such beef with the Ultimatizing of the Marvel Universe? With the actual process and idea of it, I mean -- what it means for The State of the Industry is an entirely seperate conversation. Why do we act like it's evidence of the ultimate navel-gazing of superhero comics? Why do we decry it so?

Why do we not realize that, as in so many things, comics are just very late to the game? I mean, how many fucking editions of Star Wars are we going to see before Lucas buys the moisture farm? How many respinnings of the Dracula story? Jekyll and Hyde? How about that TV movie adaptation of King Lear set on a Texas ranch? Romeo & Juliet, ya know, is the most ripped-off story of all time. Reimaginings are the bread and butter of the fiction industry; they're sort of an admittance that, yes, there really is nothing new under the sun, so let's just plagarize.

(Yes, I am aware that Shakespeare did not invent the star-crossed lovers theme, but he codified it so no one else would have to.)

I mean, we even had that Baz Luhrmann thing awhile back, Romeo + Juliet, whose sole saving grace was giving us the single "#1 Crush" by Garbage. God, that song never gets old.

Mostly it's that I have a Claire Danes bias. I hate her. Hate her. HATE HER. Every time I saw more than three minutes of My So-Called Whiny Shitty Stupid-Ass Insignificant Whitebread Dumbfuck Life of No Consequence to Anyone, I wanted to smash the TV in with my erection.

My erection of hate.

2. HAS ANYONE EVER REALLY ENCOUNTERED the mythical comic book store of doom? In the basement of some office building, no windows, murky, dusty, comics just laying in stacks? The clerks are just insufferable assholes bent on making your life difficult, etc, etc? I don't want any stories of comic book stores of your prehistoric youth -- I'm talking about stores in existence right now, still in the black, that operate this way.

I ask because it's such an accepted thing that these stores exist, and that they are Killing The Industry (along with, apparently, Mark Millar and trade paperbacks and/or monthlies) in such a dire way by driving away wide-eyed innocents who wish to get into comics.

I call bullshit on that particular myth.

3. OH PLEASE GOD, DROP THE "SUPERHEROES ARE FASCIST" THING. Anyone with half a brain stem and the ability to read critically can see that this argument is totally preposterous and monumentally moronic. The stupidity of the argument is enough to offend me, but not as much as the motive behind it -- the quest for a moral imperative to hate superhero stories. Anyone espousing that lame-ass fascism argument is doing it so they can appear morally superior to folks who enjoy the genre they despise so heartily.

You guys are like the Church of Satan or the University of Auburn. Seriously. You spend your entire existence decrying some other form of art, rather than just seeking out what you dig. You are useful to no one and advance the form of comic books not at all. Be useful and kill yourself on top of someone's compost pile, a'ight?

Look, I can appreciate that you guys don't like stories about dudes who can fly. Great. That's fine. I don't like 800 pages of self-absorbed, thinly-veiled autobiographical accounts of how the author gets nervous talking to girls. And that's fine too. Viva la difference!

But when you get to the point where you tell me superheroes are EVIL for a variety of reasons, that they are in fact corrupting, well guess what? We've heard that song and dance before, Fredric Wertham.

4. WHAT'S WRONG WITH THE MEDIA, IN TWO HEADLINES OR LESS: "Study Finds Car Owners Unaware of Defects: Who's Most at Fault?" No, the headline isn't, "what can be done," or even "click here to find out if your car is one with problems." It's "who's to blame?"

I hate you. I hate you and what you do to us. I hate your leading questions that make us more vile and base than we ever should be. I hate stupid shit like that, because it isn't, "we have a problem, how do we solve it?" It's, "we have a problem, who do we point the finger at while making no real progress?"

You sons of bitches make me sick.

5. PASSED A RESTAURANT TODAY NAMED "GUIDO'S ITALIAN SPORTS GRILL." First: what the fuck is an "italian sports grill"? Second: "Guido's"? C'mon, boys, let's stop being coy. Just name it "Wop's" and get it over with.

The weird part about all this is that I'm actually in a pretty good mood today.


Ursula, by Fabio Moon and Gabriel Ba, two of the nicest (and most annoyingly gifted) comics creators in the biz today. From AiT/PlanetLar.

Video, by Stephen R. Bruell, from Lost in the Dark Press. Proof positive that a striking cover can sell a comic book -- and there's even good shit inside!

You have your orders. Leave me.

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