Thursday, March 19, 2015

New Avengers: Age of Ultron TV spot



New clip from Marvel's Daredevil TV series



Video: Brian Wilson - The Right Time (feat. Al Jardine)

Another peek at the upcoming PBS "Soundstage" special featuring Brian Wilson and friends. His new album is out next month.



Sci-fi Spotlight: The Amazing Transparent Man



Pop stuff: Inherent Vice; Hyperbole and a Half; Alter Ego #131

What I'm reading, watching, hearing, etc.


Inherent Vice. This first-ever adaptation of a Thomas Pynchon novel is a gonzo noir that rambles and confuses, but also entertains.

Joaquin Phoenix is funny and likable as the stoned, mutton-chopped private eye Larry "Doc' Sportello, who spends the picture trying to get his "ex-old lady," Shasta Fay Hepworth (Katherine Waterston) out of a jam of increasing perplexity involving a real estate magnate, black revolutionaries, Nazi bikers and an underground dental cartel.

Weird folkstress Joanna Newsom acts as the film's hippie-dippie narrator, disappearing and reappearing throughout. Only Doc is able to see her, apparently. Josh Brolin is a blast as flat-topped police detective "Bigfoot" Bjornsen and there are numerous other entertaining bit parts and cameos.

I can't say I followed much of it, but it was fun. The cast and direction, by Paul Thomas Anderson, captures early 1970s in all its hazy craziness, which seems to be the main point of the thing, anyway.


Hyperbole and a Half. After hearing most of my household giggle its way through this collection of short prose-and-comics essays, I figured it was my turn to see if it's really that funny. I mean, my god, they were laughing - a lot.

Turns out it is really is that funny. Books generally don't make me laugh out loud, but this one did - a lot.

In hilarious, frequently profane prose accompanied by her primitive comics, Allie Brosh psychoanalyzes her pets - Simple Dog and Helper Dog - and herself, as if trying to figure out which is the worst off.

The book is often at its funniest when it takes on tough and complex topics. Brosh's account of depression is hilarious and touching. And true.

That's why the thing's so damned funny. Brosh nails it, whether it's how stupid dogs are, or how crazy humans can get. Her pinpoint self-awareness becomes are own, and we can't help but crumble in giggling recognition.

Also, wait until you read the part of the goose...


Alter Ego #131. I always enjoy breezing through Roy Thomas' history-of-comics mag, especially when the topics overlap with my own comic-reading youth.

That's the case with this latest ish, which features a lengthy interview with Marvel and DC scribe Gerry Conway. I read loads of Conway-written stories as a kid, and enjoyed his recap of those days, starting out as a teen at Marvel and writing the adventures of numerous top characters.

He's the guy who killed Gwen Stacy, co-creator of the Punisher and Firestorm - among others, and wrote the first DC-Marvel crossover comic featuring Superman and Spider-Man. All that is covered here, and well worth a look if your also a fan from those days. Click the link above to order a copy from the Tomorrows Publishing, which has lots of other good stuff, as well.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Marvel Comics June 2015 solicitations - highlights

Stuff that caught my eye - out from Marvel this June:

HOUSE OF HEM
FRED HEMBECK with JIM SHOOTER (w)
FRED HEMBECK with RON WILSON, JOHN BYRNE, MICHAEL GOLDEN, AL MILGROM, JOHN BUSCEMA & MORE (a)
Cover by FRED HEMBECK

• For over thirty years, cartoonist Fred Hembeck has been poking fun at Marvel’s mightiest heroes. Now, some of his greatest works are collected in a giant-sized one-shot that’s bursting with belly laughs!
• Fred relentlessly roasts the Fantastic Four with the help of an all-star cast of artists!
• Fred wipes out the Marvel Universe in the tale they said couldn’t be published (and almost wasn’t)!
• Even Spider-Man and the Hulk are no match for Hembeck’s trademark wit!
• Plus: a cornucopia of side-splitting short strips from the pages of Marvel Age — and an all-new introduction by the man himself!
• Collecting FANTASTIC FOUR ROAST, FRED HEMBECK DESTROYS THE MARVEL UNIVERSE and AMAZING SPIDER-MAN DIGITAL COMIC #16 — and material from HULK ANNUAL ’99; and MARVEL AGE #50, #52, #54-55, #69, #97, #122-123 and #130-131.
104 PGS


 STAR WARS: THE MARVEL COVERS VOL. 1
Penciled by VARIOUS
Star Wars has returned to Marvel, and a galaxy of comic-book stars have joined the celebration! Welcome back Luke, Leia, Han, Chewie, Artoo, Threepio, Darth Vader and the rest as you’ve never seen them before in this astonishing collection of covers from the likes of John Cassaday, Joe Quesada, Alex Ross, Skottie Young, J. Scott Campbell, Salvador Larroca, Terry Dodson and plenty more! Featuring every illustrated variant of the million-selling STAR WARS #1, plus all the covers of STAR WARS #2-6, PRINCESS LEIA #1-5 and DARTH VADER #1-6.  Then prepare to be wowed by the new cover art from Marvel’s classic STAR WARS collections, including Adi Granov’s sensational takes on the original trilogy. It’s packed with special features, but this is one book you should judge by its covers!
208 PGS


STAR WARS: EPISODE V — THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK
Written by ARCHIE GOODWIN
Penciled by AL WILLIAMSON
Cover by ADI GRANOV

The comic adaptation of the darkest chapter in George Lucas’ original trilogy is remastered for the modern age! As the Imperial Forces regroup from the Death Star’s destruction, they target the new Rebel base on the ice planet Hoth. Will Darth Vader’s troops find Luke Skywalker, or will a wampa get Luke first? Meanwhile, feelings run high in the galaxy’s greatest love triangle, bounty hunters target Han Solo, and Jabba the Hutt lies in wait. Luke seeks out the great Jedi Master Yoda on swampy Dagobah, but the Emperor has designs on turning the young Rebel hero. As the battle begins for Skywalker’s soul, will his fear lead to anger, hate and the dark side? It’s all heading to one of the greatest confrontations of all time. Prepare for a grave disturbance in the Force! Collecting STAR WARS (1977) #39-44.
144 PGS
 


STAR WARS: THE ORIGINAL MARVEL YEARS OMNIBUS VOL. 3
Written by ARCHIE GOODWIN, JO DUFFY, LINDA GRANT, ROY RICHARDSON, RANDY STRADLEY, ANN NOCENTI, ROY THOMAS, CHRIS CLAREMONT, STEVE MOORE, ALAN MOORE & STEVE PARKHOUSE
Penciled by AL WILLIAMSON, RON FRENZ, BOB MCLEOD, DAVID MAZZUCCHELLI, TOM PALMER, BRET BLEVINS, TONY SALMONS, JAN DUURSEMA, SAL BUSCEMA, CYNTHIA MARTIN, KLAUS JANSON, HOWARD CHAYKIN, WALTER SIMONSON, DAVE COCKRUM, CARMINE INFANTINO, JOHN STOKES, ADOLFO BUYLLA & ALAN DAVIS
Cover by TOM PALMER

The original Star Wars comic-book saga concludes! Savor an all-action adaptation of Star Wars: Episode VI — The Return of the Jedi, and find out what happens after the Battle of Endor! Luke, Leia and their allies seek to establish a new galactic government — but Imperial Forces still stand in the way. When Darth Vader falls, a Dark Lady will rise! Meanwhile, Han Solo and Chewbacca head to Wookiee World! The Ewoks go to war! And tragedy strikes close to C-3PO — could it be that even a droid can cry? Plus: a cornucopia of Star Wars rarities — including exclusive stories only published in the UK! Collecting STAR WARS (1977) #79-107 and ANNUAL #3, and RETURN OF THE JEDI #1-4 — plus material from PIZZAZZ #1-16; STAR WARS WEEKLY (UK) #60, #94-99 and #104-115; EMPIRE STRIKES BACK MONTHLY (UK) #149, #151 and #153-157; and STAR WARS MONTHLY (UK) #159.
1136 PGS.
 


MARVEL MASTERWORKS: DAREDEVIL VOL. 9
Written by GERRY CONWAY
Penciled by GENE COLAN
Cover by GIL KANE

Teamed with the Black Widow, Daredevil continues his adventures in the latest and greatest Marvel Masterworks yet! DD must make his decision between Karen Page and Black Widow — and when he does, it means it’s time to head West…where he and the Black Widow begin their exploits in San Francisco! There, they’ll face new challenges and classic villains — Electro, Killgrave the Purple Man and Mr. Fear, just to new a few. And they’ll do it while looking better than ever, courtesy of the unmatched art team of Gene Colan and Tom Palmer! There’s no doubt these are true Marvel masterworks, so don’t be shy — reserve your copy today! Collecting DAREDEVIL (1964) #85-96.
DAREDEVIL (1964) #85-96.
272 PGS.
 


MARVEL MASTERWORKS: THE DEFENDERS VOL. 5
Written by STEVE GERBER
Penciled by SAL BUSCEMA
Cover by AL MILGROM
Steve Gerber’s Defenders run comes to its revolutionary conclusion in the latest Marvel Masterworks extravaganza! Gerber consistently broke the boundaries of what a super-hero comic could be, and his Headmen saga stands as one of the high points in a celebrated career. From the Elf With a Gun to Bambi and the Bozos, Gerber wove together an unlikely cast with a challenging critique of the era’s culture. His stories would influence a generation of new writers — and with artwork by the stellar team of Sal Buscema and Klaus Janson, Defenders is an indisputable ’70s Marvel masterpiece. And we’ve topped it off with the classic Defenders/Howard the Duck MARVEL TREASURY EDITION team-up. Need we say more? Reserve your copy today! Collecting DEFENDERS (1972) #31-41 and ANNUAL #1, and MARVEL TREASURY EDITION #12.
280 PGS.


THE MARVEL LEGACY OF JACK KIRBY SLIPCASE HC
Written by JOHN RHETT THOMAS
Cover by JACK KIRBY

Jack Kirby earned the nickname “King” over 50 plus years in comics, from co-creating Captain America to the Fantastic Four to Devil Dinosaur. In addition, Jack’s explosive layouts, high drama and fantastic imagination helped evolve the art form in ways few others can claim. Now, the House of Ideas explores that work in THE MARVEL LEGACY OF JACK KIRBY HC. In essays and commentary, this deluxe, oversized volume reviews the comics, the influence and the times of Kirby, and puts a special focus on the month that changed everything, November 1961. Don’t ask — just buy!!!
240 PGS.
 
 


ANT-MAN/GIANT-MAN EPIC COLLECTION: THE MAN IN THE ANT HILL
Volume #1 in the Ant-Man/Giant-Man Epic Collections
Written by STAN LEE & LARRY LIEBER with ERNIE HART
Penciled by JACK KIRBY, DON HECK, DICK AYERS & LARRY LIEBER
Cover by JACK KIRBY

A man of action and a man of science, Dr. Henry Pym invented an amazing growth serum and a cybernetic helmet, and with them he became — the Astonishing Ant-Man! Pym soon teamed with Janet Van Dyne, the winsome Wasp, and the two tiny titans went on to battle an array of mini- and maxi-sized menaces from the Scarlet Beetle to the Black Knight! But adventures in the microscopic world weren’t enough for one of the Marvel Age’s first super heroes. Soon, Ant-Man became the biggest Avenger there ever was — Giant-Man! And his foundational adventures are all here in this debut Epic Collection! Collecting the Ant-Man, Giant-Man and Wasp material from TALES TO ASTONISH (1959) #27 and #35-59.
448 PGS.
 


S.H.I.E.L.D.: THE COMPLETE COLLECTION OMNIBUS
Written by STAN LEE, STERANKO, GARY FRIEDRICH with JACK KIRBY, ROY THOMAS, DENNIS O’NEIL, ARCHIE GOODWIN, STEVE PARKHOUSE & JIM STARLIN
Penciled by JACK KIRBY, STERANKO, FRANK SPRINGER & HERB TRIMPE with JOHN SEVERIN, DON HECK, BARRY WINDSOR-SMITH, HOWARD CHAYKIN, SAL BUSCEMA, JOE SINNOTT, DICK AYERS, HOWARD PURCELL & OGDEN WHITNEY
Covers by ALEX ROSS & JIM STERANKO

We are proud to present, in a single complete volume, one of the Marvel’s most-innovative series—S.H.I.E.L.D.! With international threats on the rise, Tony Stark and a council of global powers tapped Nick Fury to protect the us from Hydra, A.I.M., Baron Strucker and the Yellow Claw. The greatest team in comics, Stan Lee & Jack Kirby, dove into the world of covert ops, mixing Cold War drama with the mighty Marvel manner. They set the tone, but when Steranko took over, he rewrote the entire rulebook. Steranko turned S.H.I.E.L.D. into one of the most visually innovative comic books ever published and every issue, every story is presented in oversized glory! You’ve been granted Priority A-1 access, so reserve your copy today! Collecting STRANGE TALES (1951) 135-168, NICK FURY, AGENT OF S.H.I.E.L.D. (1968) 1-15, FANTASTIC FOUR (1961) 21, TALES OF SUSPENSE (1959) 78, AVENGERS (1963) 72, MARVEL SPOTLIGHT (1971) 31 and material from NOT BRAND ECHH (1967) #3, 8 & 11
960 PGS
 


HOWARD THE DUCK: THE COMPLETE COLLECTION VOL. 1 TPB
Written by STEVE GERBER
Penciled by VAL MAYERIK, FRANK BRUNNER, JOHN BUSCEMA, GENE COLAN, SAL BUSCEMA & MORE
Cover by FRANK BRUNNER

Get the full story of how Marvel’s most notorious movie star became trapped in a world he never made! Howard the Duck takes an adventure into fear when he’s plucked from Duckworld and finds himself on Earth, bill to proboscis with the melancholy muck-monster Man-Thing! Stuck here on a planet of hairless apes, the furious fowl forges a future for himself in, of all places, Cleveland. But the would-be Master of Quack Fu will have his wings full hanging out with Spider-Man — and waging “waaaugh” with madcap menaces like the Space Turnip, the Cookie Creature, the Beaver and Doctor Bong. Will that earn him a spot on the Defenders? Better yet, Howard for president! Collecting FEAR #19, MAN-THING (1974) #1, HOWARD THE DUCK (1976) #1-16 and ANNUAL #1, MARVEL TREASURY EDITION #12, and material from GIANT-SIZE MAN-THING #4-5.
456 PGS.
 


WEREWOLF BY NIGHT OMNIBUS
Written by GERRY CONWAY, LEN WEIN, MARV WOLFMAN, MIKE FRIEDRICH, DOUG MOENCH, TONY ISABELLA & BILL MANTLO
Penciled by MIKE PLOOG, WERNER ROTH, TOM SUTTON, GIL KANE, DON PERLIN, ROSS ANDRU, GENE COLAN, VIRGILIO REDONDO, YONG MONTANO & FRANK ROBBINS
Covers by MIKE PLOOG & TBA

He’s Jack Russell by day, but he’s the Werewolf By Night! On his 18th birthday, Jack discovers that he has inherited his father’s curse — and that’s when things really get hairy! Can he save his sister from sharing his fate? Discover how Jack became one of Marvel’s supernatural stars of the seventies in these classic adventures, serving up everything from witches to aliens to Dracula himself! But which horrifying heroes will join Jack in the Legion of Monsters? Whether he’s teaming up with Spider-Man, eclipsing Moon Knight, or fighting like cats and dogs with Tigra, Jack is one lycanthrope you’re guaranteed to like! Collecting MARVEL SPOTLIGHT (1971) #2-4, WEREWOLF BY NIGHT (1972) #1-43, MARVEL TEAM-UP (1972) #12, TOMB OF DRACULA (1972) #18, GIANT-SIZE CREATURES #1, GIANT-SIZE WEREWOLF #2-5, MARVEL PREMIERE #28 and material from MONSTERS UNLEASHED #6-7.
1176 PGS.
 


IRON FIST EPIC COLLECTION: THE FURY OF IRON FIST TPB
Volume #1 in the Iron Fist Epic Collections
Written by CHRIS CLAREMONT with ROY THOMAS, LEN WEIN, DOUG MOENCH & TONY ISABELLA
Penciled by JOHN BYRNE with GIL KANE, LARRY HAMA, ARVELL JONES & PAT BRODERICK
Cover by GIL KANE

A Himalayan expedition to find the mystical city of K’un Lun left nine-year-old Daniel Rand’s parents dead, but Daniel found the path to K’un Lun and spent a decade there training under its immortal inhabitants. He became an unmatched master of martial arts and spiritual control; armed with the shattering power of the iron fist, Daniel left immortality behind to set out into the Western world and avenge his parents’ deaths. In tales packed with wall-to-wall kung-fu action, Iron Fist runs a gauntlet through the Kara-Kai death cult, ninja adversaries and mystic dimensions — joined by Misty Knight and Colleen Wing. Iron Fist’s skill in both mind and body will be tested — until his final showdown with the Steel Serpent! Collecting MARVEL PREMIERE #15-25, IRON FIST (1975) #1-15 and MARVEL TEAM-UP (1972) #63-64.
528 PGS.
 
 

Sci-fi Spotlight: Atlantis - The Lost Continent



Music new releases May 17, 2015: Bjork; Jimi Hendrix; Bee Gees, more

Click the links to order discounted CDs, vinyl and downloads from Amazon.


Vulnicura by Bjork