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Friday, March 18, 2005

The trailing edge of comics. 

I could be doing useful things for my blog. I could be trying to recapture my glory days (about a year ago, I wrote some pretty good stuff) or I could be cleaning up my blogroll link list thingy bop, clearing out the dead space, bringing in the new folks. Not that I really know who any of them are.

(And I have to ask: Am I still relevant? The answer, I think, is "I never was." But I move on.)

Instead I'll just be a trendy bitch. Consider it like 24 hour news networks: all the easy stories, none of the tough stuff.

ONE HUNDRED THINGS I THINK ARE PRETTY KEEN ABOUT COMICS, IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER, BUT KEEP IN MIND IF SOMETHING'S AT THE VERY BOTTOM OF THE LIST I'M REACHING AND IT'S PROBABLY NOT AS COOL AS THE SHIT NEAR THE TOP... EITHER THAT OR I JUST FORGOT ABOUT IT TILL THEN

1. Frank fucking Castle, and Marvel's strange tendency to keep publishing the exploits of a mass murderer

2. The CBLDF, warts and all

3. Fanboy Rampage

4. AiT/PlanetLar

5. The way Frank Miller draws guys with square jaws and sloped noses

6. Frank Miller

7. Garth Ennis

8. That comics is the only place where a story about a 150 year-old dude with claws in his hands who is a samurai, a spandex-clad superhero, and a feral beast is considered passé and creatively inert.. only in fucking comics, man. You'll be lucky if TV shows add even a slight shade of dimension to their usual shit ("it's a cop drama, but this time, he's BLIND!" "Write that man a check!")

9. 24 Hour Comic Book Day. That shit is fun. Don't be a pussy: sign up for it.

10. CAPE, surely the coolest Free Comic Book Day shindig around

11. Flight

12. The sheer, overwhelming force of Idea that is your typical Warren Ellis story

13. Human Target

14. Getting yourself heard -- actually heard -- by People Who Matter is never more than a few e-mails away

15. Promethea

16. Jonah Hex

17. Permanent Damage

18. Steve Gerber

19. Enormous breasts

20. Enormous guns

21. B&W as vibrant storytelling form

22. Hino Horror

23. 2000AD

24. The Comics Journal, the only monthly with the balls to take comics seriously

25. Covers of old romance comics

26. Charlton Comics

27. Marvel Masterworks/DC Archive Editions

28. 100 Bullets: First Shot, Last Call. The rest of the series is pretty good, but that one there approaches a kind of perfection

29. The Invisibles, for its dogged tenacity in remaining at right angles with all expectations

30. STEVE. FUCKING. DILLON.

31. Getting a convention painting done by a guy you think is Ben Templesmith, his sign says it's Ben Templesmith, you get charged the Ben Templesmith rate, and then finding out later IT WAS NOT BEN TEMPLESMITH

32. Dave Intermittent

33. Hearing Michael Lark really go to town on DC's bass-ackwards TPB policy exactly one day before he announces his jump to Marvel

34. Seeing The Punisher in the same theatre as Tim Bradstreet

35. E! C! COMICS!

36. Charlie Adlard

37. "Meanwhile..."

38. That first comic you picked up, read, put down, and thought "holy shit, I didn't think comics could be THAT GOOD!"... thus giving birth to a lifelong addiction

39. Ads in really old comic books that give you a little slice of the pop culture atmosphere of the time

40. Those California blogger people who consistently best the rest of us, the sons of bitches

41. Batman logos

42. Scurvy Dogs

43. Calling Marvel's EIC the Devil and canonizing him only after he's long gone, no matter who he may be

44. Newsarama, cuz they gotta put all those press releases SOMEwhere, else those digital trees were chopped down for nothing

45. ChaosMonkey

46. Marvel Essential collections

47. That you can get your own thing published and reasonably well-marketed for a couple grand, as compared to at least five times as much in any other art form

48. John McCrea

49. War Stories

50. Rocket Comics

51. The adorable notion that digital comics are ever, ever going to replace print comics

52. Milestone Comics

53. The Chick Check, which I sorely miss

54. The Image and Bendis boards, for providing concrete, quantifiable evidence that there's folks out there a lot stupider than us

55. Nick Fury

56. DC Vertigo

57. The Pro

58. While we're at it, Amanda Conner

59. Preacher, because for all its fireworks and bluster, its (rather amazing) emotional climax is a fight between best friends. You gotta admire that.

60. The way in old Marvel comics the main character has to explain his origin and powers in a cumbersome chunk of exposition right at the beginning

61. Viper Comics

62. John Byrne, for graciously providing the rest of the comics internet with a goddamn freakshow

63. Mark Millar when he's on

64. Peiratikos, who are gonna be SO pissed they were listed below Mark Millar

65. Rick Geerling. You're all shitheads for not recognizing genius right in front of you. He'll also be pissed he's listed below Mark Millar, which brings me joy unmatched.

66. Digest-sized TPBs

67. Darick Robertson

68. Really, really late-night discussions about who could beat Batman ("but is it in Gotham?")

69. Gail Simone

70. Johnny Bacardi, Latin hedonist

71. CrossGen, for providing proof positive that you really DO need good material, and lots of cash and flash just aren't enough

72. Jimmy Palmiotti, and how he seems to have his hand in ten thousand titles that rule

73. Image Comics

74. That part in Dark Knight Returns where Superman lifts that fucking tank up and says that line about gods walking the earth. Wow.

75. John Constantine

76. Harvey Pekar, damn near outweighted by all the whimpering, uninteresting, witless limpdick autobiographical imitators that followed

77. Free buttons from the DC booth at conventions

78. Avengers Disassembled and other faux-events, for providing the comics internet long reprieves from talking about anything that actually fucking matters

79. Bad Signal

80. Heidi MacDonald, despite past clashes

81. That comic shops are far less creepy than gaming shops, and people are a lot less likely to strike up unwanted conversations

82. Zeus Toys and Comics

83. Convention stories from comics pros

84. Deep, deep, DEEP (and sometimes half-drunk) late-night conversations about how you and the person you're talking to are going to SAVE COMICS... when was the last time you ever got that worked up about TV, or movies, or prose fiction?

85. Matt Maxwell

86. Dave Gibbons

87. Inheriting a box of comics

88. Otto's Coffee Shop

89. The Tick

90. Lone Wolf & Cub

91. Steve Lieber

92. Jack Staff

93. Daredevil, in small doses

94. Chaos Comics... cuz all the shit's gotta go somewhere, and I'm glad they willingly ghettoize themselves

95. Astronauts in Trouble

96. Isotope Comics, since it sounds like Mecca even though I've never been there (Mecca or Isotope)

97. Tim Sale, if only he could shake that Loeb fucker

98. Jason

99. Talking gorillas

100. That at least 200 people are going to read this list for no other reason than they dig comics and don't mind what I have to say about them. Allow me to be corny: that's a special thing.

Good lord, that was exhausting.

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