Black Panther: The Struggle of Faith When God Is Silent

Modern comics tend to focus on shorter, four-to-six issue story arcs.  The ever-present wariness about the mercurial taste of readers, accessibility to potential newbies, as well as the fact each title will be collected and sold as trades two or three times a year shapes how stories are told.  Yet Ta-Nehisi Coates has embraced a longer form of storytelling, with great success, since taking over Black Panther.  His first “season” (as he describes it) was “A Nation Under Our Feet,” a yearlong story exploring the nature of people and politics, what it means to rule and who has the right to do so.  His second season, “Avengers Of The New World,” is another thoughtful, multifaceted yearlong story.  In it Coates eloquently and gracefully depicts the struggle of faith when God is silent. Continue reading

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Before They Were Movie Stars: Abnett and Lanning’s Guardians Of The Galaxy

It’s no secret, like a large portion of the world, I immediately fell in love with the Guardians of the Galaxy when I met them in James Gunn’s masterpiece.  I’d never seen Peter Quill, Rocket Raccoon, or Groot before and only knew Gamora, Drax, and Nebula from their Infinity-related exploits of the 1990’s.  This team was like nothing I’d ever seen and everything I always wanted!  It’s also not a secret, loving the films as I do, I’ve sought comics with the same feeling.  But no matter what I read it wasn’t enough like Gunn’s vision.  This is a major (first world) problem because I want more Guardians in my life!  Well, for my birthday this summer Mom and Dad got me the collections of Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning’s 2008-2010 run with Guardians Of The Galaxy, the comics that inspired Gunn’s film!  And I finally met the Guardians before they were movie stars… Continue reading

Mission: Impossible or James Bond? – Why I’m an M:I Kinda Guy

Growing up as an adolescent of the ‘90s the discussion of whether you preferred Mission: Impossible or James Bond for your spy-faring feature films was a resurrected area of pop culture discourse.  In 1995 Pierce Brosnan would debut as James Bond in GoldenEye, the first Bond film in six years, the longest gap ever between films in the franchise (at least as of this writing).  In 1996, Tom Cruise would star as Ethan Hunt in Mission: Impossible, the first film adaptation of the TV series that ran from 1966-1973.  I’ve always gotten the sense that James Bond is the more beloved pop culture figure.  He obviously has the wider reach, with a film series spanning fifty-three years and twenty-six films.  But for my money (metaphorically speaking as well as literal money in the form of movie tickets and first VHS (!) then DVD purchases), 007 has nothing on the Impossible Missions Force. Continue reading

F.N.V. – An Imperial Talker Sing-Along

Over on my blog – The Imperial Talker – I spend all of my time offering my various opinions on the Star Wars franchise. While I love waxing eloquently about the galaxy far, far away I am certainly not a one-trick pony. Oh no, I have lots of other things I could extrapolate on such as my bromance with Michael, my hatred of Michael’s brother David, my enjoyment of Deadpool, Squirrel Girl, and Ms. Marvel, my obsession with the show Scrubs, the way I marvel at fireflies, my years of playing and coaching volleyball, my love of hating Michael’s brother David, and so on and so on and so on. You get the idea, there is a lot more to me than just Star Wars. Continue reading

First Impressions: The Fantastic Four

This is a post I’ve been thinking about writing for ages.  I originally envisioned it shortly following the “First Impressions: The X-Men” post I wrote last year.  But, for one reason or another, I always stopped short of finishing it.  Now, on the eve of the Fantastic Four’s return, shepherded by Dan Slott and Sara Pichelli, the time is right.  So let’s take another trip down memory lane and revisit the very first Fantastic Four comic I ever read!  It was 1993 and the cover leapt out at me from the spinning rack in a local grocery store (the now long-gone Loblaws on W 12th St, if I remember correctly).  It was Fantastic Four #374 and, while I didn’t know it at the time, I was about to meet the characters who’d become my all-time favorite comic book team.  To this day, they still hold this place in my heart! Continue reading

Marvel Rising – A Miniseries Deserving Of An Ongoing Title!

Did you know Marvel has an incredible new miniseries out right now by Devin Greyson, G. Willow Wilson, and Ryan North staring Ms. Marvel AND Squirrel Girl?!?  Did you know I wrote about that very same series in a guest post for Graphic Novelty2?!?  Well, whether you knew or not, you know now!  So you’re welcome.  I’m super excited about this series and about having the chance to talk about it on Nancy and Kathleen’s fantastic site.  So there’s not much else for me to say outside of please click this link and give it a read!  I had a lot of fun with this one and I hope you enjoy it too. Continue reading

In Defense of Attack Of The Clones

It’s no secret I love Attack Of The Clones.  It’s also no secret I’m in the minority here.  Even among those who love the Prequels, Attack Of The Clones is often ranked last when the films are discussed.  But not for me!  I’ve said it before and I’ll proudly say it again: I love the Prequels and Attack Of The Clones is my favorite film of the Trilogy!  On that note, a few months back, Kiri (of Star Wars Anonymous) and I were having a comment section conversation about this film when she proposed an intriguing idea.  She suggested we do twin posts, she writing about her disdain for the film (while trying to highlight some things she enjoys about it) while I write on my undying affection for this cinematic masterpiece (while pointing out some things that bother me).  Obviously, I was in.  Can I convince you, my lovely reader, of its brilliance?  I say…GAME ON. Continue reading