Another piece up on Tor.com, about the recently-concluded X-Factor comic book from Marvel, which has consistently been one of my favorite titles (despite its low-selling b-list cult status) for the last 7 years or so.
I’ve had a busy few weeks of pontificating on geeky pop culture things — I mean, professionally, as opposed to the normal all-of-my-free-time that I spend doing precisely that — and so I’ve got a few new articles / essays / thinkpieces / posts / whatever-you-wanna-call-’ems up on Tor.com:
- “Ten Characters We’d Like To See On Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.,” in which I foolishly sacrifice all of my brilliant ideas for stories on the upcoming television show by organizing them into a list to show off my intense / obscure knowledge of the Marvel Comics canon;
- “‘I Am The One Who’ Thinks Breaking Bad Counts As A Genre Show,” in which I discuss the Shakespearean fall of Walter White, and how it fits into the different loose definitions of “genre,” and what the hell that even means, anyway;
- and “Batwoman’s Lesbian Marriage Problem,” in which I react to the latest controversy regarding diversity in comic books with (hopefully) a little more rationale and insider awareness that most major news outlets gave to the situation.
So check ’em out, leave your comments, and then eagerly await the next installment of “Thom Talks Nerdy.”
I recently read through the original Stan Lee – Jack Kirby (and later, all Jim Steranko all the time) run of Strange Tales: Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD, which first introduced the cigar-chompin’ one-eyed Nick-Fury-as-Super-Spy to the Marvel Universe. I’ll be honest, I don’t always love older comics because their hokey nature and heavy exposition, but these were some pretty awesome spy stories. And even better they were filled with some of the most unabashedly ridiculous spy gadgets imaginable. Everything was so over-the-top and psychedelic, and with absolute no regret or embarrassment about it. And so I shared a list of my Top 10 SHIELD toys over on Tor Dot Com, mostly hoping that Joss Whedon’s now SHIELD TV series will feature every single one of them.
Marvel recently wrapped their latest installment of the annual BigMegaUltra Superhero Summer Event, Fear Itself, written by Matt Fraction with art by Stuart Immonen. First of all, I want to congratulate those two talented creators with putting out the first big event book that shipped completely on time, a masterful feat in and of itself (if past event comics are to be any barometer). I realize that writing an event comic is a serious challenge for creators — the nature of such a series requires the writer to blow over the smaller individual character moments (usually reserved for the tie-in books) in favor of dictating the major action of the storyline. The supplementary titles are merely ribs; the main title is the spine of the story, and as such, is expected to present the major story beats with gusto, while still remaining completely self-contained. It is in this regard that, in my opinion — and I’m not just saying this with blind fanboy rage, but an objective mind — Fear Itself failed to make the mark. Continue reading There’s Nothing To Fear — But Fear Itself