Everyone knows the best part of a fan convention is the opportunity to cosplay your favorite franchise in the safe company of fellow nerds who will love you for it. Even a crappy costume gets love at a comic con. And for those not crazy enough to dress up, there is always the opportunity to snap a photo with those who are.
As promised, here are some of the best costumes from March 4th-March 6th. Included a few of the costumes from the Masquerade which have already been seen, but these pics are better. My apologies for so much…me…in this slideshow. 😛
SADLY, this is the last ECCC related blog entry until 2012. But that doesn’t mean there won’t be anymore content on this here blog!
NEXT WEEK: Battle: Los Angeles Review, Spartacus: Gods of the Arena Recap and The Hunger Games Link-Bombs + My Attempt at Casting.
LATER THIS MONTH: Sucker Punch Review, Book Club Recap, Bridge City Comics Signing Recap
AND MORE: I’ll also be meeting with a friend here in the PDX area who is interested in collaboration. Excited about mixing things up a bit and seeing what kind of response we get. I’ll post more details soon!
First impression is that it looks pretty good for a comic not drawn by the man himself. The Mignola feel really is something that helps the reader into his creepy world of demons and morally grey heroes. Here Jason Armstrong gives a good imitation of Mignola’s very unique style, but that’s all it is, and you can feel it.
Much like Hellboy we find our hero Lobster Johnson fighting the Nazis and in the process finding all sorts of paranormal trouble. It occurs to me that the masked vigilante in New York City has been done about a million times before but I just can’t help getting sucked into the world of Hellboy.
It’s funny, much of what makes Lobster Johnson a superhero is really just what the reader brings to him. From the second you see him you fill in the blanks of things like: how he operates, what kind of people he works with, what kind of man he is. These are all taken from other superheroes and really don’t bring much to the table here. In fact there are some really glaring things that kinda bugged me about the setup of the character.
First, with no real superpowers to speak of, the Lobster has to rely on his band of merry men. It’s hinted that his sidekicks are loyal to him due to wookie life debts, the same way the Shadow recruits (he saves your life, and Godfathers you into service *holy crap that was a lot of references!) Also he disappears when you are talking to him, which is rude. Another character even has the nerve to remark, “He does that.” Ouch. He also sports a very Ninja Turtle like hideout within the sewers of the greater NYC area. In a throw away line one character remarks on the cannibals that live in the sewers, and here I thought crooks were bad. That aside, there is some great stuff that the Lobster presents; like branding his victims (alive or dead) on the forehead with a lobster claw symbol hidden in his right glove. It ends up being used as a last-ditch weapon too!
Oh, he also has a very Tick like battle cry that I must admit is pretty cool. He turns and says, “Time to taste the Lobsters claw!” Or, if an enemy has just burst into flames he might say, “Burning justice is served.” Makes me think of how delectable lobster tastes. And isn’t the thought of delicious lobster enough to pick up this book?
Lobster Johnson turns out to be a really fun character that just keeps popping up in the Hellboy-verse too, so far he has made his way into nine publications! I am going to pick a few more up and get my Lobster Johnson fix. And maybe just a regular lobster fix too…Mmmm, burning claw of justice.
|Guest Blog By: Dan Robertson [@DanielZRob] |
Saw it Friday night. And since then I’ve been mentally debating whether or not I was going to even write a blog. Sometimes, if you don’t have something nice to say – you just shouldn’t say anything at all. I’ll split the difference, and because I don’t have a whole lot of nice things to say, I’ll just be brief instead. Hey, I tried to be brief. Honest.
Guillermo del Toro is the Frank Oz/Jim Henson of this Hollywood era of intriguing visual effects. Alright, maybe he and Peter Jackson can share the title. However you want to heap the praise on these two men, I feel like everything they are doing is leaving their predecessors (Oz, Henson, Lucas) in the dust. Which is how it should be. The apprentice must surpass the master. It is the way of the world.
Visually, their (Del Toro, Jackson) films are stunning – without having to rely too heavily on the digital creations that make George Lucas‘ recent movies cringingly difficult to stomach. If Lucas had it his way, the frickin actors would be digital as well (and I’m not the first one to make the statement about the man).
Del Toro brings the fun and imaginative and makes the magic feel real. Even in a film that I am not particularly enjoying for other reasons – you can say nothing wrong about his expert eye for cinema, and his ability to craft awe-inspiring creatures/characters.
Yes – he’s got a handle on the characters for this franchise. There were particularly amusing and lovable Hellboy moments, which I won’t divulge here, but when you see them, you know them immediately.
I picked up this comic book for Dan because it was published by Dark Horse (publisher of Hellboy and BPRD to name a few ). I also remembered reading a little blurb about it in Wizard a few years ago. The cover caught my eye, and it seemed amusing in a bizarre way, which is right up Dan’s alley.
Did he love it? Of course he freaking did! We have a good enough relationship (what with the knowing each other for 5 years) that we can pick up a movie, book, comic, action figure, food item, CD, video game, etc – and know perfectly well how the other will enjoy it.
Needless to say, Dan loves The Goon, written and drawn by Eric Powell. Me – not so much in love. It’s a bit too silly and random for me. I like meaty, contenty comics but it’s not needed all the time. Comics can also be entertaining.
Dan digs the writing style and will laugh out loud about it. I paged through one book and chuckled a bit. What really attracts me is the Art, which is what initially captured my attention. It works well with the humor, and I love the characters. It’s fairly cartoon-y, but Powell brings a nice zest to it, and I would definitely read his books if I didn’t have a huge stack of other things to delve through and report about.
I’ve been trying like hell to get Dan to “guest star” in this blog, because his tastes differ from mine in the comic world. He tends to like what I like, but he also has his own personal favorites that I don’t particularly care to read. And vice versa. Anywho – he insists he cannot write (bullshit) but I figured I could do something in his stead, and plug the book that he’s reading.
Also worth noting – The Goon is being made into a computer animated film. Apparently the film will be directed by David Fincher. I’m not sure how live-action directors translate to computer-animated directors…and since that really isn’t my field, I won’t do too much speculating in this area. I like a few of David Fincher‘s movies, so he’s got approval from me.
Which I think is a perfect medium for this comic. The humor is irreverent, random and a bit silly. It would be incredibly challenging to capture in live-action. I will for sure see this when it comes out, and not just because Dan will inevitably drag me to it.
I think the main element lacking for me in The Goon is a really cohesive storyline. It’s basically a series of funny one-shot stories strung together (at least in the two TPBs I read). If I could see a plot forming from all of them, it would be different. I would love to see this material made into a movie, because a plot would have to be hammered out in order for the film to work on any level. I know one exists within the structure of the series, but it would be lovely to condense the weird down into a fun 90 minute chunk.
My point, I guess – is that The Goon entertains, but never quite enlightens.
And I suppose the English major in me demands structure and some mentally engaging elements in the story in order for me to keep reading through. The Goon doesn’t satisfy on all those levels…but is worth checking out for a fun, zany trip into Powell’s weird world.
Much Love, Mindy C
Today is one of the happiest days o’ the year: Free Comic Book Day.
The only day of the year that you can wander into your local comic book store and pick up a free book. The idea is to get the kids hooked while receiving a free comic book. There are lots of choices available for the kiddies, but a few that the adults will like too.
And while I’ve never been a huge fan of Superman, this one doesn’t look half bad either.
Oh, and I watched “Iron Man” last night. It was pretty decent, and I don’t have too much bad to say about it. I wouldn’t say it’s my absolute favorite comic book movie ever (that privilege is saved for “Spiderman 2,” “Hellboy,” “Batman Begins” and “X-Men 2“), but I wouldn’t say it’s the worst comic book movie ever (that privilege is reserved for “Spiderman 3,” “X-Men 3” and some of the made for TV Movie ilk I’ve caught on youtube).
“Iron Man” was entertaining, but not emotionally edifying. I guess that might be my own issue – I’ve never followed the adventures of Tony Stark very thoroughly, and was really only introduced to the character through “Marvel Civil War.” So, it was hard to get truly excited about the origin story, or the creation of the suit. Though, I totally dug the glowy on his chest.
I was trying to get on board with the Pepper Potts character, but as a woman, was having a hard time understanding her motivation for hanging around with a dick-wad like Stark (at least, he was portrayed as a dick wad in the beginning). The dialogue between Pepper and Tony was decent enough, but she was relegated to the “his girl Friday” role and shrieking and running when things really got crazy. Though, she wasn’t a damsel in distress like Mary Jane OR a whiney biznatch like Sue Storm (movie version).
Pepper was a creation of the 60’s, and it’s obvious over the years that her character has not really been updated for society as women are currently portrayed. In the Earth-616 continuity, her biography could be compared to one of those “Women in Refrigerator” types, as she is tortured, experiences a miscarriage, and her husband is killed while in service to Stark Industries.
I could be wrong – and there could be something amazing coming in the next film (oh, there will be another) for this character. But judging from Marvel’s treatment of her, I’d say that could be a stretch.
There were positive aspects of their relationship though – I don’t want to be a total nay-sayer. I kinda dug the non-romance between the two. And Pepper never appeared to be “trying” to get Stark’s attention. Their relationship evolution was very natural, but still – does this chick have a life outside of fulfilling this dude’s needs?
Another issue in the movie: Stark’s character development was present, but didn’t move me as much as I thought it would. There was little sub-plot for me to sink my teeth into. “Batman Begins” had gritty layers of self-discovery, naughty villains, and moodiness. I guess I was kinda hoping for one of those. I don’t suppose there is anything really moody about Stark, at least not yet. They didn’t even bother capitalizing on his alcoholism for dramatic purposes – it was mostly there for amusement.
Dan and Jake really liked it. I have to say – I think it was mostly a “Boy Flick.”
Visually and technically it was exciting and sometimes, quite beautiful. The fluidity of Iron Man moving in the suit – and the colors. It was like watching a comic book come to life – which is the same feeling I got from “Superman Returns.” It was sumptuous and lovingly crafted. I do have to give thumbs up to Jon Favreau and the rest of the folks for putting a lot of love into this movie.
What I like about how Marvel is crafting their franchise – is that they are getting together an awesome group of actors to make a wicked cool “Avengers Movie.”
I’m just sad that we missed the “BEST BONUS SCENE EVER” after the end-credits. But in comic-dom, it’s hard to let a secret that exciting get away, so I’m pretty sure of what I missed. But I won’t spoil it here.
BTW – I’m watching Battlestar Galactica Season 3 right now, and loving every minute of it. I forgot how much I enjoyed this series. But, like every good series which has gone before it, it will end before it’s time – barely answering all the exciting questions and mysteries it posed, no doubt.
Much Love, Mindy C
Have been mixing in my crazed brain lately. So – just for fun, I decided to google the search terms “Nyquil Dreams” to see what I would come up with. Apparently, I am not alone in my weird dream adventures as of late.
Guest starring so far has been: Barack Obama, Trip Weisman, and Harry Potter. OK, the HP I can understand – I read like 7 books devoted to this kid. BUT – Barack Obama? Come on! Who dreams about freakin’ Presidential Candidates? And Trip – yeah, he’s a character I made up. He’s a character in the movie we’re filming. That’s REALLY weird.
But last night – last night was the clincher. It starred not one, not two, not EVEN three – but at least 5 comic book characters. List-worthy perhaps? Me-thinks so!
5. Jean Grey
And these characters – rather than being stand-alones, were actually interacting with one another. Hellboy and Colossus were not initially fighting each other – they were fighting some common enemy. Then something happened (as it often does in dreams) and these crazy heat-seeking missiles were being deployed by Colossus and at Hellboy. Maybe Colossus was being mind-controlled by the enemy? No matter – then they began fighting.
Hellboy’s pretty tough – and for some reason he was able to sustain the blast of these several small-ish missiles. Finally it came to a face-to-face show-down. Colossus slammed Hellboy up against a wall and freaking blasted him with hundreds of missiles.
And in dream logic – that seemed to do the trick. Colossus was freed – and reverted to his non-metal self. Hellboy can withstand fire-power (being a minion of hell) and it was a weird happy ending.
The next dream phase occurred with Wolverine starring (yet again) in his own comic – but this time, instead of leading or being a part of a team – he was the team himself. The psyches of both Cannonball and Jean Grey (along with their powers) – were loaded into Wolverine. He was being deployed to Iraq. I saw the cover issue very clearly – it was entitled “X-Men: Revisions.” For some reason – I was REALLY clamoring for this comic.
The writer – it turns out – was an Iraqi war veteran who had served three tours in Iraq, and wanted to tell the story of what was happening over there using comic books as some sort of allegory.
In the dream – this was destined to be a top-selling issue.
OK – I know where some of this is coming from – I recently started reading “The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay,” and the last bit I was reading before drifting off to sleep – Joe Kavalier was sketching comic-books wherein the protagonist is fighting a one-man war against Hitler. Post Nyquil shot I was thinking – wow, wouldn’t it be nice if modern Wars could be so clean cut? I know this is an overly optimistic view of what World War II was – because it was actually a really devastating war for Europe and for the soldiers fighting in it. But compared to the last two or three wars America has led – WWII was like Mom and Apple Pie.
In 2008 – sending a superhero off to fight the current war this country is embroiled in – what would that comic look like? What would the hero DO?
On another random whim – I googled “Wolverine fighting Nazis” just to see if that had been done before. And it has. But apparently in better taste than I would think…
Oh and Cap fought the Germans too…
I might type more on this later, but comics pretty much have their root in war propaganda – allowing kids and whomever else to get a taste of the action that was happening over seas, if they themselves couldn’t play an active role in it. Superman, Wonder Woman – some of the biggies saw their rise to fame propelled by battling the evil Germans and communists.
I’ve known this for awhile…but am just starting to make the connections to present day ideas. It would be hard to argue that Civil War had anything to do with relating Superheroes to the war we are currently fighting. That had more to do with the atmosphere of fear pervasive around the country.
Civil War also had/has LOADS to do with the freedom of information, and secret congressional meetings, and transparency in government (more on that later).
If anyone CAN point me in the direction of Superheroes and comics that are dealing with the Iraq war – I would be interested in checking them out. If only to satisfy my own curiousity, piqued, oddly enough – by a Nyquil Dream.
Much Love, Mindy C