Tag Archives: batman

DC Comics Plans After Convergence

Screenshot_2015-06-09-20-12-58

DC Comics plans for what is going to happen after Convergence are finally becoming clear.  It looks like they are doing some major housecleaning and not resetting numbers across the line.  Staple books like Batman, Superman, Detective Comics, Wonder Woman, etc. aren’t renumbering to 1 and will continue with their “New 52” numbering (all are at issue 41 right now).

Overall there will be 25 comics that were being released before convergence that will continue being ongoing series and not being renumbered to number 1.

  • Action Comics by Greg Pak/Aaron Kuder
  • Aquaman by Cullen Bunn/Trevor McCarthy
  • Batgirl by Cameron Stewart/Brenden Fletcher/Babs Tarr
  • Batman by Scott Snyder/Greg Capullo
  • Detective Comics by Brian Buccelato/Francis Manapul
  • Batman/Superman by Greg Pak/Ardian Syaf
  • Catwoman by Genevieve Valentine/David Messina
  • Deathstroke by Tony Daniel/Tony Daniel
  • Flash by Rob Venditti/Van Jensen/Brett Booth
  • Gotham Academy by Becky Cloonan/Brenden Fletcher/Karl Kerschl
  • Gotham By Midnight by Ray Fawkes/Juan Ferreyra
  • Grayson by Tim King/Tim Seeley/Mikel Janin
  • Green Arrow by Ben Percy/Richard Zircher
  • Green Lantern by Robert Venditti/Billy Tan
  • Harley Quinn by Amanda Conner/Jimmy Palmiotti/Chad Hardin
  • Justice League by Geoff Johns/Jason Fabok
  • Justice League United by ?/Travel Foreman & Paul Pelletier.
  • Lobo by Cullen Bunn/Cliff Richards
  • Secret Six by Gail Simone/Dale Eaglesham
  • Sinestro by Cullen Bunn/Brad Walker
  • New Suicide Squad by Sean Ryan/Carlos D’Anda
  • Superman by Gene Luen Yang/John Romita Jr.
  • Superman/Wonder Woman by Peter Tomasi/Doug Mahnke
  • Teen Titans by Will Pfeifer/Kenneth Rocafort
  • Wonder Woman by Meredith Finch/David Finch

There will be 24 new series coming out that will all be number 1 issues.  They are:

  • Robin, Son of Batman by writer/artist Pat Gleason
  • Black Canary by writer Brenden Fletcher and artist Annie Wu
  • Martian Manhunter by writer Rob Williams and artists Ben Oliver and Paulo Siqueira
  • Earth 2: Society by writer Daniel H. Wilson and artist Jorge Jimenez
  • Midnighter by writer Steve Orlando and artist ACO
  • Bat-Mite by writer Dan Jurgens and artist Corin Howell
  • Batman Beyond by writer Dan Jurgens and artist Bernard Chang
  • Cyborg by writer David L. Walker and artists Ivan Reis and Joe Prado
  • Dark Universe by writer James Tynion IV and artist Ming Doyle
  • Doomed by writer Scott Lobdell and artist Javier Fernandez
  • Harley Quinn/Power Girl by writers Jimmy Palmiotti, Amanda Conner and Justin Gray with artist Stephane Roux
  • Red Hood/Arsenal by writer Scott Lobdell and artist Denis Medri
  • Starfire by writers Jimmy Palmiotti and Amanda Conner, with artist Emanuela Lupacchino
  • We Are Robin by writer Lee Bermejo and artists Rob Haynes and Khary Randolph
  • Justice League of America by writer/artist Brian Hitch
  • Bizzaro by writer Heath Corson and artist Gustavo Duarte
  • Prez by writer Mark Russell and artist Ben Caldwell
  • Omega Men by writer Tom King and artist Barnaby Bagenda
  • Mystic U (tentative title) by writer Alisa Kwitney and artist Mauricet
  • Section Eight by writer Garth Ennis and artist John McCrea
  • Dr. Fate by writer Paul Levitz and artist Sonny Liew
  • Green Lantern: Lost Army by Cullen Bunn, art by Jesus Saiz and Javi Pina.
  • Justice League 3001 by Keith Giffen, J.M. DeMatteis and Howard Porter
  • Constantine: The Hellblazer by Ming Doyle and Riley Rossmo

This isn’t the first time DC has cleaned house.  DC has had sweeping line changes since the launch of the New 52 back in 2011.  Every 6 months they have fairly consistently ended series and added new ones in.

The biggest difference in this change that I can see is that DC won’t be calling their line the “New 52” anymore, which make sense since the “New 52” is now 4 years old. The DC Comics line of books will now be called “DC You”.

New number 1 issues always sell a lot and make for easy jumping on points so the big two (Marvel and DC) renumber series on the regular when series take new creative directions.  DC seems to have held off on this more than Marvel lately.  We saw this when there was sea change in creative for Batgirl and Wonder Woman and DC continued with the “New 52” numbering rather than go reverting to number 1. DC has also (so far) kept to the “New 52” numbering without reverting back to the old numbering, even for major anniversary issues. Issue 19 of Detective Comics would have been issue 900 in the old numbering. DC still made this a special oversize anthology issue but actually kept the issue number of 19 and resisted renumbering the issue to 900.

I’ve been a big fan of the “New 52” so while I’m sad to see the name go, it looks like DC isn’t rebooting everything and this is just a shake up of things. The new books in this shake up aren’t all that interesting to me. So far the only book I’m planning on buying is Bryan Hitch’s Justice League of America, but we shall see.


Arkham Knight: Complete Pre-Order DLC Rundown

Batman Arkham Knight Cover Art

When the PS4 and Xbox One were announced I decided that come hell or high water that I would wait to buy one the new consoles until a game I really wanted was released.  Almost a year after their launch there has only been one game that has had the pull to push me into the next generation of consoles and it’s been Arkham Knight.

Batman Arkham Asylum

I’ve played all of the Arkham games since the release of Arkham Asylum back in 2009 and its been one of my favorite games series of all time.  I loved it’s follow up Arkham City and even really enjoyed the non-Rocksteady Studios release Arkham Origins.  I even played the Playstation Vita Version of Arkham Origins, Arkham Origins: Blackgate.  So you can bet your sweet ass that if there is a new Arkham game now or in the future I’m going to be buying it, and whatever console I need to play it.

I love me some Arkham but for the release of Arkham Knight the powers to be are doing something that absolutely drives me insane.  That is retailer exclusive pre-order DLC bonuses.  When I get Arkham Knight I am going to play the absolute shit out of this game.  I will complete all of the bonus missions, I will find all the Riddler trophies, I will buy all of the DLC.  However, because of these retailer exclusive pre-order DLC’s I have a Sophie’s Choice to make wading through this mindfield and figure out which store has the best deal.

The Arkham games have had pre-order DLC bonus’s in the past but they have never been story missions.  Arkham City had some challenge maps and character skins that didn’t really effect game play.  This time around we have actual story missions that will be included which makes picking a store to buy it from much more difficult.  In the past these they have eventually released these pre-order DLC as normal DLC but no mention has been made yet of when this will happen and what the cost will be.  I’d like to think it will be included in the 40 dollar season pass but I won’t hold my breath…

So let’s run down the various stores and pre-order DLC bonuses you can get.

Arkham Knight - Harley Quinn

First no matter where you pre-order from you will get the playable Harley Quinn Story Missions.  I’m assuming that this is similar to the playable Catwoman DLC from Arkham City and that it will continue to be included with the game after the pre-order window as long as you are buying the game new (although this is not confirmed so better safe than sorry).

Amazon

Amazon has a few options here. First they have two collector’s editions that were going for 100 dollars (they are no longer available to buy).

Arkham Knight - Amazon Batmobile

The first collector’s edition had a model replica of the Arkham Knight Batmobile.  It also comes with a steel book game case, art book, exclusive 0 issue of the Arkham Knight Comic Book, along with three “New 52” Character skins.

Arkham Knight - Amazon Statue

The second collector’s edition also cost 100 dollar and had a statue of Batman (also no longer available).  It also came with the other collector’s edition material such as steel book game case, art book, exclusive 0 issue of the Arkham Knight Comic Book, along with three “New 52” Character skins.

Arkham Knight - Book Edition

Next they have a Arkham Asylum bundle which for 10 dollars extra (70 dollars total) you get the game and a copy of the 25th anniversary edition of the graphic novel Arkham Asylum by Grant Morrison and Dave McKean.  You also get a bonus first appearance of Batman (Detective Comics 27) character skin.

Arkham Knight - Amazon Regular

Lastly they have the normal version of the game which comes with the Batman first appearance character skin.

Best Buy

Arkham Knight - Best Buy

Best Buy offers the Wayne Tech Booster pack which gives you four in game upgrades to your weapons and Batmobile.  These are Explosive Gel Takedown, Aerial Juggle, Batarang while gliding, and Batmobile weapon upgrade.

This might be the weakest Pre-order DLC bonus pack, I can’t imagine you won’t be able to just get all of these upgrades through normal game play.

Wal-Mart

Arkham Knight - Walmarrt

Walmart offers a Prototype Batmobile skin along with 5 dollars credit to their movie service Vudu.

Gamestop

Arkham Knight - Gamestop

Gamestop offers a story mission featuring the Red Hood (aka Jason Todd).  This might be the best bonus of the whole group seeing as most of the other bonuses involve skins and not additional gameplay content.

Steam

Arkham Knight - Steam

Steam is offering Batman character skins with a Dark Knight Returns version of Batman along with a Batman Beyond version.  I am for sure getting the game on Playstation 4 so Steam was never really in my cards as an option.

Playstation 4

Arkham Knight - PS4 Exclusives

Regardless where you buy the game from, if you get it on PlayStation 4 you get you get Scarecrow Nightmare missions along with Batman 3000 and Batman ’66 character skins along with a Batman ’66 Batmobile skin. This sucks for Xbox One owners but frankly isn’t that surprising.  Playstation has been getting exclusive DLC going all the way back to the original Arkham Asylum.

jerry final thought

So after much thought and deliberation I went with Gamestop to get the Red Hood story mission.  I’d honestly much rather get the Arkham Asylum graphic novel bundle from amazon since 10 dollars is a good price for the book and I don’t own it already. But if it’s between a book and more gameplay I have to choose more gameplay.  The struggle is real, the struggle is real.


DC Comics Bombshell Variants Return!

DC Comics Bombshells Issue 1

If you are a fan of DC Comics Bombshell Variants from last June (June 2014) then strap in, because you are in for a treat.  First up will begin releasing a new Digital first series centered around the Bombshell characters.  It will be written by Marguerite Bennett and have art by Marguerite Sauvage.  The series “Introduces retro-bombshell versions of Batwoman, Wonder Woman and Supergirl in an alternate reality where super-powered female heroes are on the front lines in WWII (DC Comics).”  The series will begin releasing digitally first in July with the first print version released August 12th.

Ame-Comi Girls

I assume the series will be like most of their other digital first series where digital versions will be released weekly for 99 cents and print versions will collect every three to four digital issues and release for 2.99 to 3.99.  This isn’t the first time DC has released a comic series based on one of their lines of figures.  Back in 2012 they had a Digital first series based of the Ame-Comi statues that was actually pretty good (check it out here on Comixology).

There will also be new Bombshell statues!  DC released pictures of the first two featuring Killer Frost and Cheetah.

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It is no secret that the of the DC Comics Variant Cover theme months the most popular by far has been the Bombshell themes.  Since their release DC has put their Bombshell characters on statues, glass wear, t-shirts, lip balm, you name it.  So it’s pretty exiting then that DC have just announce that they will be releasing another set of 21 Bombshell variant covers this August!  Not only did they just announce they are coming out but they also released them all on their website! So check them out and start saving your money now!


Catwoman 75th Anniversary

Catwoman - Nine Lives of a Feline Fatale (2004)

This year marks the 75th Anniversary of Catwoman.  She made her first appearance in Batman issue 1 which came out in April 24th, 1940.  In her 75 year history a lot has happened to Catwoman and there have been a lot of interpretations of the character.  She’s had three on going comic book series, been in TV (animated and live action), and in two different movies!  So in honor of her 75th birthday (I saw she doesn’t look a day past 60!) we are going to go over 9 facts about her you may not know.

1) Catwoman has been Portrayed in Film by TWO Academy Award Winning Actresses

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Not only have both Halle Berry (Catwoman 2004) and Anne Hathaway (The Dark Knight Rises 2012) have both portrayed Catwoman and won Academy Awards but Michelle Pfeiffer (Batman Returns 1992) has been nominated for Academy Award as well.  Julie Newmar (Batman TV 1966) has won a Toni award for best actress in a musical and Eartha Kitt (Batman TV 1966) has won a Daytime Emmy for Best Actresses.  Lee Meriwether (Batman TV 1966) has been nominated for two Golden Globes and one Emmy.  So far the only Catwoman actress not to win or be nominated for a major award has been Gotham’s Camren Bicondova, but seeing as she is only 15 I don’t think it will be long before she joins this list as well.

2) Catwoman was Ranked on IGN’s top Heroes AND Villains List

Catwoman Jail

Is Catwoman a hero or a villain?  During IGN.com’s 2009 rundown of the greatest heroes and villains Catwoman ranked 20th on the list of greatest heroes and 11th on the list of greatest villains.  So it seems our femme fatale is a little bit of both, as Selina Kyle says in The Dark Knight Rises, she’s adaptable.

3) Catwoman has been a Member of the Justice League

Justice League of America Vol 3 1

In 2011 the reboot of DC Comics entire line of comic books was centered around the Justice League comic book which started at the origin of the team.  After some misadventures Amanda Waller of the shady government agency A.R.G.U.S. decided America needed their own Justice League in case something were to happen and the original Justice League went rogue.  This lead to the creation of the Justice League of America whose members included: Steve Trevor, Martian Manhunter, Green Arrow, Hawkman, the new Green Lantern Simon Baz, Stargirl, Katana, Vibe, and Catwoman.  Each member was meant to counter a specific member of the original Justice League with Catwoman on the team as direct counter to Batman.

4) She was Once a Flight Attendant

Batman 62

Comic books be crazy yall.  I was unaware of this but going through the DC Wiki there was an origin story of Catwoman in which she used to be a flight attendant but during a crash got amnesia which lead her to her life as a criminal.  You can’t make this shit up.  I’ll let the DC Wiki tell the story since it is not available digitally and I wasn’t able to read the issue first hand.

“When Catwoman leaves her hideout, she finds Batman and Robin waiting for her. They try to give chase, but she throws a box at them with angry cat inside it. Batman runs towards falling debris, and Catwoman realizes he will be killed. Instead of escaping, she leaps to save Batman’s life and gets hit in the head by a brick.

They wake her up in the Batcave, where she feverishly screams about airline rules. It’s revealed that Selina Kyle was a stewardess, who fell out of a crashing plane and got amnesia. Kyle is horrified to hear that she’s become a criminal in her amnesiac state. Batman asks about her obsession with cats, and she explains that her father used to own a pet store. He taught her all about cats, and she subconsciously remembered that through her amnesia.”

5) On Earth-2 She is Married to Batman and They Have a Child

Huntress TPB

Yes its true! Gotham’s favorite on again off again couple had a love child!  Well, technically this takes place in an alternative reality, I tried to avoid dipping into the Elseworlds stories of Catwoman but I can’t avoid this one.  The character of the Huntress has grown in popularity and had her own mini-series and ongoing series in the new 52.  She has appeared as the main star of the short lived Birds of Prey TV Series along with a few guest appearances in the CW’s hit Arrow.

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There are two versions of this character, the first is Helena Bertinelli, the daughter of a crime boss that shows up in the main continuity stories of DC Comics.  Bertinelli is the version they used for the TV Series Arrow.  The other version is Helena Wayne, the daughter of Catwoman and Batman.  Helena is the version that is used for the TV Series Birds of Prey. Helena is also the version of Huntress that was used in the recent on going comic series Worlds’ Finest which was centered around her and Powergirl (Earth-2’s version of Supergirl).

Worlds' Finest Issue 1

6) Catwoman Has her Heart Removed by Hush

Heart of Hush

The popular villain Hush returned during “Heart of Hush” story arc that took place during the larger Batman RIP story.  In this story Hush performs plastic surgery on himself in order to make him self look identical to Bruce Wayne.  His plan is to kill the actual Bruce Wayne and live the rest of his days off of the Wayne fortune.  During a scuffle with Catwoman she tears his bandages to reveal his new face and give away his plan.  He manages to subdue Catwoman and removes her heart.

Heart of Hush 1

Batman tracks down Hush who uses a paralyzing gas and reveals his big plan.  Batman is able to over come the gas and eventually over take Hush.

Heart of Hush 2

Batman gets Catwoman’s heart back to Doctor Mid-nite and he is able to return her heart back into her body.  He warns her however that she may not ever return to her former level of physical prowess again.  However in true Catwoman fashion Selina enlists an all-star team of friends (Oracle, Holly Robinson, Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn and Slam Bradley) to find and drain all of Hush’s bank accounts leaving him penniless.

7) Catwoman is Currently the Head of a Mafia Family

Batman Eternal 37

During the year long Batman Eternal comic event it was revealed that Catwoman is the daughter of mafia boss Rex Calabrese.  Rex is a new character who was the cell mate of James Gordon who was in jail while being tried for murder.  Rex had been in prison for a some period of time and used to be known as “The Lion” due to the scars on his face and his sharpened teeth.  Catwoman breaks into Blackgate to speak with Rex where he tells her to seize power and unite the crime families of Gotham under her leadership.

Selina’s crime boss story picks up in the on going Catwoman series starting with issue 35.

Catwoman 35

8) Catwoman has a Side-kick Catgirl

Catwoman & Catgirl

In Batman issue 695 Catwoman steals the contents of a safe belonging to the Falcone crime family.  When she returns home she finds Kitrina, a teenaged escape artist and Carmine Falcone’s long lost daughter, breaking into her apartment.

Selina leaves Kitrina bound in a locked room and calls Batman to her house in order to turn her over to the police, but discovers that Kitrina had managed to free herself.  This impresses Selina, who had tied up Kitrina using an “inescapable” knot that Bruce had shown her years earlier.  Following a massive battle with Black Mask and his henchmen, Selina agrees to take on Kitrina as her new sidekick, Catgirl.

Catgirl

During the legendary story by Frank Miller, the Dark Knight Returns, Carrie Kelly took up the mantle of Robin.  Well in its sequel the Dark Knight Strikes Again Carrie Kelly has ditched her role as Robin and continued her work under the title of Catgirl.  In the Miller-verse Selina Kyle exists and is the Madam at a brothel, having long retired as her role as Catwoman.

9) Catwoman has a Sister Named Maggie

Maggie Kyle

Selina Kyle’s parents both died pretty grisly deaths (her mother committed suicide and father died of alcohol poisoning) while Selina and her sister Maggie were young.  Maggie went to an orphanage and was quickly adopted while Selina grew up on the streets.  The two lead pretty different lives and while Selina entered the criminal world her sister Maggie became a nun.  Selina’s criminal activities have had a big impact on Maggie in that she was at one point kidnapped and beaten by Black Mask.  Things get worse for Maggie Black Mask then forces Maggie to eat her own husbands eyes.

Maggie Eyes

Selina does get revenge however and kills Black Mask, shooting him in the head.  Maggie however goes insane and is committed to a mental institution.  She later escapes and takes on the villainous persona of Sister Zero after killing a nun and using her nun-tools as weapons.  Sister Zero then hunts down Selina and attempts to kill her believing that her soul has been taken over by a Cat Demon.

Sister Zero

That’s it folks!  I hope you enjoyed and maybe learned something new about every ones favorite feline femme fatale!


Mystery Comic 1: Detective Comics: Batman – 734

Comic (1)

This is a great comic to start with because it’s a batshit (pun intended) crazy. First of all its part 20 of the of 88 “No Man’s Land” crossover event that took place during the entire year of 1999. Let’s take a minute to let that marinate. There was a crossover Batman event in 1999 that took place across 13 titles and various one shot comics. So if you were trying to follow along in this series back in 1999 you would have had to buy 88 issues costing roughly $175 dollars. Even though that’s over an entire year that’s a hell of a lot of comics if you want to get the entire series. It also means is confusing as shit if you were to be a new reader trying to get into a certain comic.

Comic 1 - 6

It’s intimidating enough when you see a number like 734 next to a book. If you are new to comics you are going to ask yourself, “Do I need to read 733 issues to know what’s going on?” Not only that but this is part two of a two part story, “No problem!” you exclaim, “I’ll just buy Detective Comics 733 and all will be well.” So you go to Detective comics 733 but when you do its list as “Crisis of Faith” not “Mark of Cain”. No “Mark of Cain” part 1 is in Batman Comics issue 567. And not only is Detective Comics 733 not the first part of the story you were looking for but it also is part 16 of No Man’s Land not part 19. So within one month you have lost three parts of the No Man’s Land arc.

This is a perfect example of why it’s so hard to break into comics if you are an outside reader. Of course with the internet its easier now to find out what is happening with comics month to month but it’s still pretty damn difficult. If comic book companies are scratching their head to why people don’t buy comics this serves as a huge example. First it’s a huge crossover that involves close to 100 books, second they are spread out randomly across 13 titles, and third within a year afterward none of the events of No Man’s Land even mattered. I get the need to keep the status quo when it comes to a character like Batman. You can’t really kill or injure characters and so that happens the impact that stories are going to have. But to have an event like this that last an entire year and involve so man titles have all most no lasting impact in the Batman or DC universe, its little wonder how this kind of thing can lose more readers than it gains. It’s another example of the comic industry desperate for sales squeezing as much money from their base as possible rather than do something that might gain new readers.

Ok enough rant back to the comic itself.

So needless to say it’s a little confusing coming straight into this book. You get a one sentence blurb kind of describing what No Man’s Land is and then it jumps right in. Cain is trying to kill Commissioner Gordon and his daughter tackles him out a window to stop him. Batman saves the both of them holding on to Cain with a rope and Cain holding on to his daughter by the hands. He drops her and it picks up with Cassandra (his daughter) in a graveyard (hanging out not cause she’s dead) not exactly explaining how she survived the fall.

Batman then talks to Cassandra for a while (no explanation why or how he got there) and finds out that Cassandra can’t speak any language, she only knows the language of violence.

Comic 1 - 1

Are you shitting me? The language of violence… I know enough about Batman to know that Cassandra Cain later will become Batgirl. I have also read enough Batgirl that they use this whole she can’t speak thing for a while in the comics. It leads to interesting stories but she understands language she just can’t speak it. I don’t know how this kind of thing works but it seems to me if you can understand English perfectly you should be able to speak it to some extent. It lead to some interesting stories but they winded up dropping the whole thing by a very random contrived method. They had some random meta-human who we have never met and never see again. He has the ability to fix peoples brains and he happens to run into Cassandra, fix her brain, and leave. So from then on Cassandra can speak and write. It was a total cop out and you can tell it was only done because the writers were tired of skipping around how she couldn’t speak and picked an easy out. So knowing what I know about the character this whole section about Batman’s shock at her only knowing the language of violence is pretty lame.

Back to the story, Batman finds Cain and fights him while Cassandra dons a black mask and attacks/steals money from Two Face. It cuts back to the Batman/Cain fight and right before they land a devastating blow on each other Cassandra breaks up the fight distracting them by throwing the money she stole from Two Face at them. Then it cuts to Batman introducing Cassandra Cain to Barbra Gordon (Original Batgirl) who thanks her for saving her father and tells her she was once Batgirl. It ends with Batman saying to Oracle “Oracle. Call them”, with no explanation of what that means.

Comic 1 - 7

Over all it’s not a bad comic just really hard to follow completely out of context. I luckily had some history about No Man’s Land and Cassandra Cain but which helped a lot. Had you just picked this up without any context it would probably be a lot of non-sense. Overall I give it a 6 out of 10.

Here are a couple of my favorite vintage ads from it.

Comic 1 - 3

Comic 1 - 4


Dark Knight Part 3 Announced!

Dark Knight 3

Yesterday (4/24/15) at C2E2 it was announced that Legendary Comic Book writer Frank Miller will be returning to his Dark Knight series with one more book.  Joining Miller on writing duties will be Brian Azzarello who said, “For the past six months, I’ve been working with Frank Miller to bring the next chapter in the ‘Dark Knight’ to light.  It’s been humbling. I’ve learned a lot, and I call him sensei. It’s a really, really big project.”

We don’t know much else so far.  Miller won’t be drawing the comic and we don’t know who will.  There were rumors that there won’t be a single artist but it will instead be a rotation of several high profile artists.  The release date is set for this fall.


Mystery Comics Project: The Arrival!

I know that I only posted about this a couple of days ago but in reality it’s been close to two weeks for the comics to get here.  Now I know this is just me being spoiled from using amazon prime but seriously two weeks to ship something is ridiculous.  I love me some woot and have gotten some great deals from it in the past but don’t ever order anything from them you might need quickly.  So up top are scans of all the covers that I took last night.  I was actually pretty surprised by the quality of the comics that I got.  They were pretty diverse selection some going back to 1990 and some from as recent as 2012.  Also there was a lot more number 1 issues that I could have hoped for.  This will certainly make reading these a little easier and prevent me from being completely lost.

One minor gripe was that included in these comics was the following issue of Batman.  It is was a free preview version of the graphic novel Batman: Earth One that was released last year to coincide with the release of The Dark Knight Rises.  It’s not really a comic book and it was a free give away so it’s a bit of a cop out from original description of the order I made.  I was pretty annoyed initially but the quality of the other comics is better than I expected so I’m going to let it slide.  However as far as this project goes I am going to switch it out with another book.  I had picked up a bunch of random comics while I was at the local comic book convention and am going to a random issue of Detective Comics from 1999 (Detective Comics 734) instead.  Since I was promised a Batman comic if feels like a solid replacement.

Batman Earth One: Special Preview Edition

 

So here is the complete list of the comics that I got.

  • Detective Comics: Batman – 734
    July 1999 – DC Comics
    $1.99
  • Fantastic Four – 383
    December 1993 – Marvel
    $1.25
  • War Heroes – 1 of 6
    July 2008 – Image
    $2.99
  • Wonder Woman – 178
    March 2002 – DC Comics
    $2.25
  • Catwoman – 1
    August 1993 – DC Comics
    $1.95
  • Hammer of God – 2 of 2
    1991 – First Publishing
    $4.95
  • Squalor – 4 of 4
    August 1990 – First Publishing
    $2.75
  • Blackest Night R.E.B.E.L.S. – 10
    January 2010 – DC Comics
    $3.99
  • Day of Vengeance – 1
    June 2005 – DC Comics
    $2.50
  • Wolverine – 27
    June 2005 – Marvel Comics
    $2.25
  • Secret Avengers – 1
    July 2010 – Marvel
    $3.99
  • House of M – 1 of 8
    August 2005 – Marvel
    $2.99
  • Exiles – 48
    August 2004 – Marvel
    $2.99
  • X-Men – 27
    June 2012 – Marvel
    $3.99
  • Ultimate Spider-man – 78
    August 2005 – Marvel
    $2.50
  • X-Patrol – 1
    April 1996 – Amalgam
    $1.95
  • Zorro – 6
    October 2005 – Papercut
    $2.95
  • Hercules: The Knives of Kush – 3 of 5
    October 2009 – Radical Comics
    $2.99
  • Bullets and Bracelets – 1
    April 1996 – Amalgam
    $1.95
  • Adventure Comics – 504
    October 2009 – DC Comics
    $3.99
  • Wrath – 1
    January 1994 – Malibu Comics
    $1.95
  • Wrath – 6
    June 1994 – Malibu Comics
    $1.95
  • Deadman – 6
    July 2002 – DC Comics
    $2.50
  • Negation – 9
    September 2002 – Crossgen Comics
    $2.95
  • Transformers: Generations – 1
    March 2006 – IDW
    $1.99

Along with these comics I also got 10 packs of random non-sports cards.  Five unopened packs of Pukeymon Cards and 5 unopened packs of Johnny Quest Cards.  I also got random assortment of opened Desert Storm cards as well.

They are pretty fantastic as well and don’t worry I’ll make a special blog post just about them.

The total retail cost of the comics would have been $68.50 and the retail cost of the cards would have been $19.90 bringing the total value of the package at $88.40 retail.  I paid 14.99 which is 17% of retail value.  The most valuable comic of the bunch is Catwoman 1 which goes for $5.00 today which is 2.56 times its original cost.


Mystery Comic Book Project

Woot Picture

Full disclosure this and a few posts related to this were actually written on another blog that I do that is dedicated to Jane Austin’s Pride and Prejudice.  “Well that’s a weird thing to post on a blog about Pride and Prejudice?”  It doesn’t!  Which is why I am moving these posts over here to Comic Books and Cats!  So basically what has started as an impulse purchase will now be a new project for the website.

Here is what was listed on the website of what my mystery comics will include:

Every bundle is guaranteed to include, among the 25, at least:

  • 1 Avengers book
  • 1 Batman book
  • 1 Fantastic Four book
  • 1 Spiderman book
  • 1 Wolverine book
  • And 1 X-Men book

You will receive vintage comics, and some that may have high value!

Includes Marvel, DC, Dark Horse comics and more

Also Includes a BONUS of 10 unopened packs of non-sport collector cards that just might include DC, Marvel and/or Star Wars.

If the picture is any indication it looks like all stuff from the 90’s during the big speculation boom. Those comics are generally worth very little since they printed so many in those days but they also happen to be the comics of my formative years. The plan will be to read all of them and write short reviews along with pictures and scans of what some of the “collector’s cards” are. I’ll make another post when it arrives that details what all I winded up getting. Hopefully they come in the next few days, I love woot but they are terrible when it comes to delivering things and it usually takes at least 2-3 weeks. Any ways stay tuned and I hope you are as excited as I am (which I doubt you are).


Lego Batman 3

LEGO-Batman-3

If my last post with DC’s Lego Variants didn’t give it away I am a big fan of the Lego video game series.  This started with the Lego Star Wars games which I initially bought when I got a PS3 and has continued with all most every game they have put out.  I have played all three Lego Star Wars games, both Lego Batman games, Lego Marvel, Lego Pirates of the Caribbean, and both Lego Harry Potter games.  The only ones I haven’t played are the Lego Lord of the Rings games.  So needless to say I have played a lot of Lego games, and while they are similar they manage to improve with each new game and iteration.

Lego Batman 3 continues the way of handling the games that was started with Lego Batman 2 which is to have real voice actors and flushed out story and cut scenes.  While I appreciate the effort I actually don’t like this feature very much.  The cut scenes are all unskippable the first time you see them, and while they did put effort in it I could care less about the story.   What I like about the Lego games is the gameplay and the cut scenes get in the way of me playing.  This game did a better job than Lego Marvel did and they were generally a lot shorter and less annoying.  The good news is once you finish the initial game and go back in free play mode all cut scenes are once again skippable.

Since the Lego Harry Potter series a staple of the Lego games is an open world hub area.  In Lego Batman 2 it was in the form of a very large open Gotham that you could explore.  In Lego Batman 3 there are several open world areas.  You have a large Watchtower, Batcave, and also several lantern worlds.  These areas are all very large and have lots to explore but are a little confusing.  I had to look up online to find where to buy the red bricks and will have to look online again when I am ready to buy characters and other items.  It’s not a deal breaker by any means but it is pretty confusing on figuring out where to go.

As of writing this I have finished the main game and had a great time.  The levels are similar to Lego Marvel in which there are about 3 acts in each and most end in a boss fight.  There are a couple vehicle levels mixed in that are pretty short and fairly odd.  The main levels are a lot of fun.  They have really mastered the platforming that they put in the game and it feels like they put a lot of effort in this game.  It’s hard to make puzzles you have to go through when you have Superman on your team but they do a good job at it.  They split up all the mechanics through a dozen or so characters so you still need to switch out and use your whole team to complete each level.

In Lego Batman 2 they introduced several suits you needed to unlock various parts of the game.  In Lego Batman 3 they allow you to switch between those suits whenever you want which is a awesome and great addition.

Lego Conan Obrien

There are a total of 150 playable characters in the game.  Along with the typical batman characters and many iterations of the Bat suit there are a slew of other justice league and other DC characters.  The more famous include Wonder Woman and Green Lantern while the obscure has Bat Cow and Bat Mite.  They also included a handful of celebrity characters as well such as Conan O’Brien, Kevin Smith, and Jim Lee.  I haven’t found all the celebrities yet but its pretty awesome knowing they are there.  The characters are one of my favorite parts of these games.  I generally 100% all of these games and the main reason is that I want unlock all the characters.

Arrow Pack Lego Batman 3

Along with the game itself I went ahead and bought the season pass for DLC.  All ready out is a Batman 66 Pack, Man of Steel Pack, and Dark Knight Pack.  Along with those three there will be 3 other packs, one based on the TV Show Arrow and one based on Batman Beyond.  I’ve only played the Batman 66 DLC so far and it was great.  It gives you one story based mission (takes about 20 minutes to play) and a slew of additional characters.  The Batman 66 pack was narrated by Adam West and had the feel of a classed episode of the TV show.  When you punched characters big signs with POW, BANG, WHAM appear which I did laugh out loud when I saw them.

If you are a fan of the Lego games you probably have all ready bought this.  If you haven’t played a Lego game before this is a great one and you’d probably have a good time.  I’ll leave you with one little cheat that you can use in all the Lego games.  So part of the cheats you can buy with the red bricks are multipliers that multiply the amount of coins you get.  There is a 2x, 4x, 6x, and 10x.  The key is that they stack together so when you have them all on you get 3840 times as many coins as you normally do.  So when you are playing don’t bother buying characters right away, save all your coins to start getting the multipliers. By the time you have the 2x, 4x, and 6x you will have so many coins you won’t have to worry about running out any more.


New Comic Book TV Part IV: Arrow

Arrow (TV Series) Logo1

You Have Failed This City

Most of the new comic book related TV that is coming out this year has been from DC comics.  We have The Flash, Gotham, Constantine, and eventually Supergirl.  Each show will be fairly different and have different networks and tones but one thing they all share is that without Arrow they would have never been made.  Arrow was DC Comics first foray into TV in the new modern “Iron Man” age of blockbuster comic book properties.  While there is a explosion of the genre right now it certainly isn’t the first time that DC Comics has made its way into television, hell its not even the first time The CW has entered into comic books.

Batman 66 Logo

While historically it goes all the way back to the live action TV series, The Adventures of Superman with George Reeves in 1952, the most memorable (to me at least), is the 1966 Batman live action television show.  It ran from 1966 to 1968 with a total of 120 episodes and for a long period of time was the definitive take on the character of Batman.  There were a couple more shows such as The Secrets of Isis and Shazam! in the 70’s before the next breakout hit of Wonder Woman in 1975.

Lynda Carter Wonder Woman

Wonder Woman ran for 3 seasons from 1975 to 1979 and a total of 59 episodes.  Besides Batman, Wonder Woman, and the live action Hulk series most of the comic book television since then has been largely forgettable.  There have been some standout successes like the 1993’s Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman and 2001’s very successful Smallville.  But looking at a list of shows that were made it largely consists of shows I had no idea existed.  There was Superboy, Swamp Thing, Birds of Prey, and even a 90’s Flash.  Overall there have been 14 shows that have come and gone with maybe three being real successes.  The point of all this is that even though a lot of these are properties we all know very well, its still hard to break out and for a TV show to become a real success.  Arrow, now starting its third season, can not safely add it self to that list of successes.  It is also safe to say had Arrow not been a success there would be no Gotham, Flash, Constantine, or Supergirl.

Arrow Cast

The Calm

The season three premiere brings us back into what is the new status quo for Starling City.  Recouping from the aftermath of the mirakuru Deathstroke army, things appear to have calmed down.  Oliver and and the team back to taking down criminals one by one and are slowly cleaning up the city of organized crime entirely.  The police no longer see the Arrow as a threat and even announce that they will no longer be perusing him for criminal charges.  There are some seeds of deeper plot points to come but it really culminates in a cliff hanger at the end of the episode.

What I Liked

Arrow has really found its groove.  The beginning of the episode they take down some unnamed criminal and you see every one working together as a well oiled machine.  Sure Thea is somewhere unknown and Black Canary isn’t really a part of the core team now but you don’t have the bickering and second guessing as you used to.  Whatever hangups every one seemed to have before are now gone and you get the feeling they are finally really working together as a team.  This of course doesn’t last long, which has something to do with that cliffhanger ending but you do get a sense that every one is on the same page now.  I liked this part probably the most, you get the sense that every one has been through some stuff and that they are better as a team because of it.

What I Didn’t Like

City of Heroes

I love Felicity Smoak.  She is one of, if not my favorite character on the show.  It’s kind of well known at this point that she was only suppose to be on the show for one episode but due to the positive reception by fans she came back for a couple more episodes, and then eventually became part of the main cast.  That being said there is a quick and dumb romance subplot between her and Oliver that was really annoying.  It’s not that I don’t want the characters to get together, but they so clearly are not going to end up together they abandon the subplot as quickly as they introduce it.  People generally don’t stay together forever and if they had decided to do this romance plot for a little while and have it not work out I think that would have been fine.  It just felt very contrived and as an excuse to have some shock and awe and shake up the status quo a bit.  They introduced a new character of Ray Palmer (The Atom) and its pretty obvious they are implying that him and Felicity will get together.  Which again is totally ok.  Just don’t set the groundwork for the next relationship while trying to pretend that her and Oliver are going to get together.  It undercuts the impact and makes the whole thing feel exploitative.

jerry final thought

Besides my annoyance at the Felicity / Oliver love subplot it was a really solid episode and I am excited for the things to come.  I didn’t see the first season of Arrow until the second had started but after a binge watch of it I became a big fan and am now hooked.  The cliffhanger at the end was out of no where and as sad as it is I’m looking forward to seeing what that will mean for the future of the show.


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