Pretty, Fizzy Paradise

I'm back! And reading! And maybe even blogging! No promises!

Monday, March 31, 2008

Wesley Dodds is a Doofus

Apparently I haven't made fun of Wesley Dodds in ages! I must remedy that! Fortunately I can show you this scene from "The Man Who Knew All The Answers". This titular man is not Wes, obvs.

Okay, well, to fill you in, brilliant scientist guy figures out a way to vibrate his unused braincells or something and give himself supersmart cognitive abilities. This leads to trapping them in a vault, and escapage, yadda.

Anyway, because this guy's one of those smart people that are apparently dumber than a box of hair (see also: Dodds, Wesley), they find mention of a fellow with his description storming in and beating the pants off reigning chess champions. God forbid there be subtlety involved. Or at least a fake mustasche!

Anyway, of course, Wes has a plan:

He buys a chess-playing robot from an old museum and sets it up as an unbeatable champion!


Really, how much brain power does it take to wear a freaking disguise. Or at least change your goddamn clothes, seriously.

So there is playing:

Too bad, they played to a draw! Five times! Not too shabby!

So how does the chess playing robot work?

...that is not how you build a chess playing robot, Wes!

Okay, see, if this were Batman, he'd have either gone under disguise himself to chessfully kick the ass of this brainy bad-guy, or he'd have built (or repaired) the awesomest chess playing robot ever. Wes? Wes just buys some old run down thing, shoves his tiny blond sidekick inside with a giant chess text book and goes all "Make me proud, kid!"

That's got to be really uncomfortable, I'm just saying. Though to give Sandy credit, he manages to play a guy with some sort of enhanced brain power to a standstill five times while stuck in a museum robot! Does he get any credit for that, ever? Of course not!

I won't post any of the ending to this, suffice it to say, they follow him, Wes proves his utter inability to tell a convincing lie, Sandy demonstrates his sidekick-worthy prowess in the field of martial arts that look rather wrong if you have even remotely a dirty mind (which I do) and the badguy is properly caught. It's vastly entertaining of course.

But mostly, I can't get over how Wes decides to "make" his miraculous chess-playing robot by shoving his sidekick inside some rickety old museum relic with a book. Yeesh. You're a sucky mentor, Wes.

Also, Burgundy is NOT your color.

(All pictures courtesy of Adventure Comics 498!)

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Okay, Okay, the GI Joe Movie's Starting To Look Cool

You know, I had my doubts, but I have to admit, I'm really starting to look forward to the GI Joe movie.

I can't really explain it. As a kid, I thought the cartoon was okay but it wasn't one of my favorites. And when I caught a recent episode of the new, somewhat anime-esque version, last year I was more befuddled than anything else (though I did think anime-ized Duke was kind of hot).

Still. The more I hear about it, the more fun I think it's going to be. Besides, I like anything with gratuitous comic booky violence and explosions, and this sounds like it's going to deliver.

Also, I hate to say it, but Snake Eyes actually looks really cool. I don't understand why Ray Park doesn't have a bigger movie career than he does, the man has a knack for making designs/costumes that ought to look ridiculous on a real person somehow look actually kind of cool. You'd think more folk would want to exploit that talent.

I'll be sad if there isn't any of those GI-Joe educational messages during the ending credits of the movie though. That would be hilarious.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Two Unrelated Thoughts

Someday, in the not to distant future, little Milagro should totally be Earth's first "Teen Lantern".

I'm not entirely sure how it'd work in the Corps concept. Maybe as some sort of Earth-based trainee? Either way, it'd be freaking adorable!


Oh and on a completely unrelated note, I actually adore this Pink Supergirl costume. I mean, granted, it's nothing like Supergirl wears in the comic, but, well, who cares?

I'm sure I'd blogged quite a bit back when I worked at the toy store about how many little girls just snapped up any and all Supergirl related goodies. And how sad I was that I really couldn't recommend the Supergirl comic to any of the parents for their little girls. Admittedly, Supergirl's a LOT better now, but I'm still not sure I'd be ready to recommend it to little girls that age.

But heck. Girls like pink. Girls like Supergirl. The costume is cute, heroic, and doesn't show off way too much pre-pubescent body like a costume based on the comic would. I think I'd have adored a costume like this at that age. It's perfect.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Why I Think Literary Elitism Harms Kids

This Newsweek article about Classics Illustrated makes me happy. (Found via Blog@Newsarama).

I recall reading a few of the Classics Illustrated books as a kid, borrowing them from the school library and really enjoying them. I'm really glad that they're making new versions, since really, while I don't particularly care if kids ever get introduced to "the Classics" but anything that gets kids reading more makes me happy. I'm always sad to see kids say that they don't like reading because it seems clear to me that said kids just haven't found the right subject matter.

One bit from the article pisses me off though:

You can't go wrong with any of these series. But the old question posed by strict teachers and worried parents still hangs in the air: shouldn't you be reading the originals and not wasting your time on what used to be called "funny books"?

Of course this isn't the writer's sentiment, and in fact, the article's writer clearly disagrees with it, but I have always hated the kind of elitism that this quoted bit represents. It shouldn't matter what kids are reading, as long as they're reading, and it's this sort of attitude that turns kids away from reading, period.

Of course, I'm somewhat biased. I have distinct memories of bringing Star Trek books to my school's Summer Day Care program and trying to happily read only to get glowered at by some adult or other (thankfully none of my own teachers) going "Should you be letting her read THAT?"

It didn't matter that the novels were at least a couple hundred pages long or that I was one of the more skilled readers of my grade level what with all the practice I got. These people were simply aghast that I was reading something that wasn't "worthwhile".

Fortunately, my teachers didn't particularly care what I read as long as I was kept quiet (I was rather rambunctious. :-P) and my parents have always been incredibly practical sorts, aside from being avid Romance novel and Sci-Fi/Western/Men's Adventure novel readers themselves, and were just happy that I was reading period.

But I knew boys who had to sneak comic books inside text books, because their parents Did Not Approve. Girls who had to pass around fantasy or romance novels amongst each other because their parents would never allow them to buy or borrow any from a library. It was positively ridiculous.

And more and more kids just stopped reading altogether. Why should they bother? TV gave as much of an adventure or soap opera thrill and since it came into the house unblocked, the kids just had to wait for a time when mom and dad weren't around/paying attention.

I never understood what these parents were thinking. Seriously? If a kid tries something like Dickens and doesn't like it, you're not going to force him to change his mind by taking away all the other less savory choices. Maybe he'll like it when he's older, maybe not. I know personally, I'm a total English Phillistine. Dickens bores the fuck out of me. The Great Gatsby was filled with characters that I absolutely despised. And don't get me started on Catcher and the Rye. I don't resent my high school for making me read them, of course, since I'm sure there are valuable life lessons to be learned from them. But honestly, I was never more happy than when I could put that damn wretched thing down and pick up something I actually liked.

You can deplore my taste if you want. :-) I don't mind.

School is supposed to, as I see it, make you read books you don't particularly want to read. But I think parents (and teachers to a lesser extent) have the responsibility to ensure that kids also have access to reading material that will actually keep them reading. Even if they don't personally approve.

Hell, it doesn't have to be comic books or novels or anything like that even. I mean, consider how much reading there is in the average Final Fantasy game. Take Final Fantasy X (I know, I'm out of date. But I've never played many MMORPGs, and I never got around to FFXII). That game can take upwards of 100 hours to play, easy. And while there's definitely voice acting, if you consider the amount of unvoiced text the game has in the form of menus, minigames, battles, and the like, there's no way Junior's reading skills are going to get rusty.

Honestly, the sort of elitism that the quoted sentiment represents makes me ill. I believe that it causes real and possibly irreversable harm to the kids who have to hear it all the time. It turns reading into a chore and an assignment and that's not what reading is about. It's really infuriating.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Gotham Times!

Why didn't I know about this? The Gotham Times are (is?) online!

I love fake newspapers! It's like the Weekly World News but on a THEME!

While I'm enjoying the specifically political headlines, (if groaning at the puntastic "It's simply too early to determine Dent's true face." -A2), I think my favorites are the little columns:

"Gotham Beekeeper Killed in Bizarre 'Bee-Mauling'."

"Group Claims Foul Play Behind Elephant Deaths"

It all seems interesting. I'm starting to get awfully impatient for this movie. :-)

Wednesday, March 26, 2008


You know, I remember being little and collecting toys like My Little Pony or Little Pretty Kitties and wondering, particularly with the latter, where all that hair came from.

I mean, at least ponies had manes and tails to brush. But cats? Not so much. Still, they were fun at the time, and only eye-roll-inducing in retrospect.

Of course now Ami's posted a link to this.

Let's look at one shall we?

Or how about these, which came out around the time I was still working in the toystore:

I'll grant that at least they don't have long flowy hair...but um, I don't really think mascara on a cat is much better.

It's really kind of horrendous isn't it?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Because A Supervillain Law Firm WOULD Be Awesome...

While I've never played any of the Phoenix Wright games, it probably isn't a surprise that I totally agree with this.

Seriously, superhero Law and Order would be the best thing ever!

Heck one of the reason I'm so thrilled Manhunter's coming back, aside from Kate, Todd, Damon, Dylan, et al, is that it's so interesting to see how legalities work in a comic book universe.

I have to admit, for all my problems with Slott's run of She-Hulk as it progressed, I really had enjoyed the sheer fun of the law aspect. How do you have a masked superhero as a witness? And comics-as-legal-documents was just brilliant!

I admit, I haven't read any of David's run yet, but the solicits seem to be playing up the bounty hunter angle, which disappoints me. (If I'm wrong and there IS superhero law in the book, let me know! I'm not a huge Peter David fan in general, but I would totally give it a chance!)

I'd actually like to see a superhero lawyer comic with characters that aren't necessarily superheroes themselves. Kind of Gotham Central for lawyers, so to speak. I mean, Manhunter and She-Hulk are great, don't get me wrong, but on some level the nifty lawyer stuff HAS to come secondary to the superhero thing. Which is as it should be since the women are superheroes.

Still, it'd be kind of awesome just to see regular folks. I mean, how legal IS it when Batman drops a criminal on the police doorstep?

I think if I were writing a law-type comic, I'd totally have characters pushing for some sort of "superhero license". Not, say, like the Registration Act or anything. But wouldn't it be neat if superheroes had to take some kind of seminar or class on what's legal and what's not in their profession? I mean, there'd need to be some way to keep identities secret. But really, it always seemed to me like getting dropped on the police doorstep by a guy in a batsuit would be a good way to getting cases or evidence thrown out of court or something. I mean, sure, WE know Batman's legit, but if I were a defense attorney, I think I'd have a field day with that. Anyway, I could see the license thing could be a (probably unsuccessful) attempt to try to get fewer cases thrown out of court. Also it'd be entertaining to see different heroes in the license process.

Though I suppose in full disclosure, I'm also one of those people who thinks a comic consisting solely of superheroes at the DMV would be hilarious. So my taste is very questionable.

Actually, I think civil cases would be more interesting. All that property damage! Or...say a supervillain dies without a will, who DOES inherit his eeeevil laboratory? His kid? His right hand man? How do settlements work in the DCU? Or contracts! Though I suppose a supervillain couldn't really sue a supplier for failing to deliver the doomsday device on time. But then again, it would totally entertain me to see him/her try!

Ooo, what about all those kids with one hero and one villain parent? Imagine the custody cases!

Would Batman be able to sue Batwoman for copyright infringement?

Though really, thinking about it, the main draw for this whole idea for me is the notion of what would have to be an eeeevil supervillain law firm. With superpowers! Imagine all the havoc they could raise! It'd be awesome!

I would totally read this comic. :-)

Monday, March 24, 2008

Taking today off blogging too. :-) I know, I'm lazy. I'm sure you'll deal. Consider it an extended Easter vacation.

On the plus side, this brief was actually kind of fun to do.

On the downside, I'm arguing for the plaintiff and I may just hate my client.

Good training for real life! :-)

Anyway, I'm collapsing. Proto-Lawyer Powering Down. G'Night!

(Note to Self: Inflict More British Sci-Fi on Ragnell And Diamondrock This Week Because I Am Evil)

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter!

In good old lapsed-Catholic fashion I didn't give up anything for Lent (though I did make a valiant, though ultimately futile, attempt to not eat meat on Fridays) but I'm still taking Easter off.

(Well, truthfully, it's more because of the appellate brief assignment I've got due on Monday. At least it's kind of fun, even if it may kill me. :-))

Hope everyone who celebrates has a good holiday and everyone who doesn't has a good regular day too!

Saturday, March 22, 2008


Oooo, news about Gotham Knights!

Kevin Conroy is confirmed for Batman, which is nifty, but totally not what I'm concerned with.

They have David McCallum as Alfred! Illya-as-Alfred! OMG!!! Best choice ever!!!

My inner fangirl is happy. <3

...goddamnit. That means I've got to watch the damn thing don't I? Meh. The things I do to satisfy my fan-love. Hmph.

On WFA and Recent Discussions

Very recently, two prominent bloggers have publicly stated that they're no longer using WFA. I supposed I ought to say something publicly in response.

There are certain accusations made in the posts that I will not address. Mostly because my bias is fairly obvious in this case. :-) You can probably guess that I would support/defend my partner-in-crime and you'd be right. So let's just consider that done, shall we? (I will say that I have never personally known Ragnell to be passive anything. If there's aggression involved, it's quite active.)

What I will say is that When Fangirls Attack is a niche site. It's not going to suit everyone's tastes and we don't expect anyone who is unsatisfied to keep using it. We're not going to change our mission statement because certain people are unhappy about it and while we are always open for suggestions on how to improve, we're still the ones who are going to make the final decisions about it.

Complaints and criticisms are fine with us, though likely I'll stop to try to answer them because I'm a busybody like that. And while I'm not really one to say "if you don't like it, make your own" I will say that if anyone does decide that our coverage of a certain topic is pitiful or unsatisfying and does want to create their own version to suit their tastes better, we'll be glad for it.

What we don't expect is for anyone to support When Fangirls Attack simply because we're female. That strikes me as utterly ridiculous. Women can make a good product, women can make a bad product, and if our product is not for you, don't use it. Our x-chromosomes can handle the rejection. While WFA is a site themed around the portrayal of women in comic books, there's nothing about it except the name that really indicates that we must be female. There's nothing to stop a man from running a site with the same theme after all. It's just a linkblog.

We expect people to go to WFA for the content linked, not out of some strange motivation to support the endeavors of women. We don't think you're betraying comic-book-feminism, female comic book fans, or womanhood in general if you don't read us.

It's something of a relief if you don't, really.

(On a tangential note, I'm mildly puzzled by Ms. Carlson's choice of title. "Breaks with" carries the connotation that Ms. D'Orazio was in some way affiliated with WFA or its staff. No such affiliation has ever existed.)

Friday, March 21, 2008

A Whitewashed Speed Racer?

I've got remarkably mixed feelings about the upcoming Speed Racer movie.

I mean, it looks good. Well good in the sense that it'll either actually be good, or it'll be so awful that it's a blast to watch. I'm rather stunned by the way the actors, particularly that fellow playing Speed, really evoke the characters.

But it gives a slightly bad taste in my mouth that all of the main actors in the film seem to be caucasian.

Admittedly, I don't think there's anything in the plot that necessitates the characters/actors be Japanese or anything, but, well, I kind of think that a movie based on a Japanese anime ought to star Japanese-American (or at least Asian-American) actors.

Heck, even if the story specifies a European or American origin for the characters, there's no reason the characters couldn't be Japanese-European or Japanese-American.

I have nothing against the actors themselves, but it seems like there are still so few starring roles for non-white actors that it really would have been nice if a movie based on one of the earliest and most famous imported Japanese animated shows could have a featured a mostly non-white cast.

It seems like such a missed opportunity to me.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

So This Nemesis Thing:

I've been following all the reactions re: Tom Tresser and Diana with interest. Lots of discussion on both sides. I admit, me, I'm tentatively in support of the couple. Similarly to Ragnell, I actually like Nemesis a lot. I'm not sure I buy him as the love-interest-forever sort, and I'm certainly not marrying them off in my mind or anything, but as dating goes, she could do worse.

I remember thinking Nemesis was neat back in Heinburg's run. I refuse to let Picoult ruin him for me damnit.

Anyway, I have to say, I'm much happier seeing Diana moon after a guy like Nemesis than a guy like Batman (sorry to all Bruce/Diana 'shippers out there). Don't get me wrong, Batman is awesome. Even I, who am not that much of a fan, can admit that by sheer objective standards, the man is awesome. He makes dressing as a Bat look cool.

But seriously? Diana's no simpering socialite to be dazzled by Bruce Wayne's charm. Or young inexperienced hero to be amazed by Batman's general awesomeness. She knows the man. She knows that just as objectively as the man is awesome, he's also an utter dick.

Now, don't get me wrong, this isn't an impediment toward liking a character. Heavens know, I heart the jackasses. But honestly, knowing him as well as she does, I'm fairly certain that she would know full well how much he would NOT be a good boyfriend. Nice to look at, sure, but she can look at him now.

Tom's cute and funny, and honestly much more personable. You're a lot more likely to have a fun casual evening with him than with Batman I think. (Barring the whole beating up villains thing, but one would think a break would be nice.)

But that's pretty much a personal taste thing, I acknowledge. Naturally I assume Diana's taste is like mine. But then I'm wont to do that in general. It's a character flaw. :-)

Though one complaint from the always interesting Neither Doormat Nor Prostitute does make me boggle just a little:

She'll learn how to go bowling for the man? Are you fucking kidding me? How bought instead he learn how to be competent and worthy of her? What's next, is she going to find some bratty kid and decide to spend her life playing Barbies with the kid while she cooks dinner and anxiously waits for Tommy-poo to get home? Will Black Canary make guest appearances and complain because her Olliekins sent her Barbies off with Sin and now she doesn't have any way to fill her days but eating bon bons and looking for Connor's wandering body?

Okay, I get not liking Nemesis and even not liking Diana's portrayal in this story arc. But, I don't quite understand what's wrong with getting interested in something that your crush likes? Isn't that fairly natural?

Admittedly, it doesn't always work. I know I took art classes for three years of high school because I crushed on the teacher (who, to be fair, was very very attractive), and it came to nought, because in truth, I'm one of those people who really, it doesn't matter how much you teach me, I'm still going to SUCK at art.

On the other hand, I started playing video games because my boyfriend liked them and I still like them now, long past that relationship's fizzling.

It's not a big deal to me, honestly. Heck, I got into superhero comics on a friend's recommendation. I don't regret it. It's fun.

I'd imagine that after learning to bowl for Tom, whether she ultimately enjoys it or not (I suspect she will actually, for exactly the same reason I hate the game: it requires a certain level of skill, accuracy and balance), she'll teach him hobbies that she enjoys. More fun is had for all!

Furthermore, it's bowling, not drugs or swinging or religion or any of those other things that you're possibly going to regret later. Say she does have a miserable time. It's tedious, annoying, whatever. She's too good at it. No challenge. The shoes stink. The food's terrible. Everyone's drunk. (Maybe that's just MY bowling adventures, heh.) Worst thing that happens, she's out an evening. Yeesh. :-)

Wednesday, March 19, 2008


Yay! Solicits are up!

Which means *I* have a post. Yay!

-I'm mildly bemused by the Titans, but hey, I'm much happier with a Dick/Starfire revisitation than a Dick/Barbara, so I can deal. (If you're new around here, I do NOT like the Dick/Babs couple for many searchable reasons. :-P)

-I always thought "Antithesis" was a good villain name. It rolls off the tongue so well.

-You know, I've always thought Batman a tad overrated (I know, blasphemy, heh) but seeing him poised against Zealot on that Dream War cover makes me cheer. Kick her ass, Batboy!

-Ooo, swordsmen versus dinosaurs. I'm there.

-Still totally apathetic to the Spoiler thing, but I know lots of folks that are really looking forward to this, so I'm happy for them. :-)

-Isn't Talia Al-Ghul dead yet? Yeesh.

-I like the All-New Atom, but it's weird that by June, they're going to still be exploring the Palmer-Choi connection. I mean, shouldn't they have gotten that out of the way by now?

-Ooo, traumatic Wally-flashbacks. That'll be fun. :-)

-And Hal's origin continues. It's not Emerald Dawn. It's already a plus in my book. :-)

-And JSA Classified is AGAIN about Wildcat. I do love Ted Grant, but it still seems like the comic's constantly about one of the same five characters all the time. And that might be being generous. Yeesh.

-Beowulf! Didn't he die at the end of that story?

-I keep trying to get into the current legion, but I can't. Possibly it's my age. At 25, I'm well aware that by Legion standards, I'm one of those icky adults, but I'm still young enough to remember that teenage years were not the bygone halcyon days of yore, but actually kind of lame. Can't drink, can't smoke, can't vote, and high school society was really really fucking annoying. Yeesh.

-When did Keith Giffen take over Midnighter? That might get me to pick it up. Nothing against Ennis's talent, but his writing tends to be somewhat give-or-take for me. It's a stylistic thing, and I don't like Midnighter alone enough to bother trying to wade through that. I might try Giffen's though.

-I really adored Fables once upon a time (pun unintended, sadly enough) but somewhere along the way it lost me. Too bad. I do remember the beginning very fondly.

-I still really hope they don't airbrush Alan Scott. I'm sure they will, but I wish they wouldn't. Much as I like to joke about it, it's hardly that big of a deal. Yeesh.

And on the Marvel side.

-Captain America looks good. Oooo.

-Mythos: Captain America looks good too. I just hope Jenkins keeps Sally Floyd far from it.

-Guy with an eye patch! Guy with an eye patch! I'm totally going to have to buy Secret Invasion now! It's about damn time, damnit!

-Didn't Kate and Clint already have their clash in Fallen Son? I remember really liking that bit. Oh well, should still be interesting.

Looks like it'll be a good month.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Oh dear!

Ack. I just found out Bruce Jones is taking over Checkmate.

Bruce Jones

As in the guy who turned Jason Todd into a freaking tentacle monster on Nightwing. Among other travesties.


I hate completely knocking someone's creative effort, so I'll try to be fair, maybe Jones is just decidedly ill-suited to Bat-books. Maybe he actually can write a good espionage adventure.

But egads, the man's resume does NOT inspire confidence.

Monday, March 17, 2008

I Want This Comic Now Please!

I love blogs. I really do. Because if it weren't for someone, I'd never have heard of this.

I want!!!

Okay, admittedly, Jeph Loeb's writing's kind of give or take for me at the best of times, but I did actually enjoy Fallen Son, so I'm willing to give it a shot. Besides, this has Cap, Bucky, WWII, and Nick Fury and the Howling Commandos!

I really can't see any possible way for this to not be awesome. <3 Of course, if it's not, I'll be on here to bitch, don't you worry. :-)

Sunday, March 16, 2008


So, some of the solicits are up. Me, I'm thrilled about Manhunter, intrigued by Reign in Hell, and excited for Trinity and Final Crisis...but honestly, the main thing I noticed was the cover for JSA:

It's a good thing I'm not in the DCU, because I would totally not be able to look Alan Scott in the eye. Goodness.

Bet it gets airbrushed before the final printing...

Saturday, March 15, 2008


Something that always befuddles me when I stop and think about it, is how I never got into superhero comics until the beginning of 2005. I was alive more than two decades before I'd ever realized that this genre was the one for me! Considering how much I love superhero comics now, it's mind boggling to me that it took so long.

Especially since, when I look at my favorite sorts of television shows, movies and books now, I realize that the exact same elements I've loved about them were always prevalent in superhero comics and I was too silly to notice.

I mean take soap operas for example. I loved them for the convoluted history, insane melodrama, rampant retcons, and the occasional tendancy of a meglomaniac to try to take over the world with a fabrige egg.

It's one of many signs that I was destined to be a superhero comics fan.

Recently I found another one. See, I was digging through my old piles of crap back home for spring break and I found my lovely collection of Man From UNCLE tapes which I promptly brought back up to school to inflict on my very good friend who is rather used to me forcing insane hobbies down his throat by now.

Anyway, my collection's fairly small, scattered across the four seasons. I'd gotten them on a stroke of luck. I'd gone to the video store to ask if they had any to rent, and it turned out that through some complicated reasons that amounted to no one wanting to rent them, I got to buy them cheap! Go me!

Ah, how I adore the show. Everything from the snazzy names (you try not being cool with a name like Napoleon Solo) and the espionage, the crazy plots with things like exploding hula girls and microdot laden tobacco containers, and that time Illya Kuryakin had to wear a turban and play a lute so they could find the secret computer leaking UNCLE information to the eeevil THRUSH.

And that's not getting into all the explosions, implausible technology with all its lit-up buttons, unlikely fight scenes, the hanging upside from meat hooks in a freezer, the death traps and that one episode that starred William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy before Star Trek came about...

Oh, and how even though there was a fair prevalence of fairly annoying female characters, there was usually at least one entertaining girl-character each episode that was worth watching too. Even if they usually wound up in the death trap too. :-)

Such a wonderful show.

But thinking about it now, all the things I loved best about the show were probably indicators that I ought to have been reading superhero comics back then too. Oh well, better late than never.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Some thoughts on Print Comics

I was never really a fan of Lynn Johnston's "For Better For Worse". I remember chuckling at certain strips and rolling my eyes at others, but I never particularly grew attached to any of the characters. I suspect it's to do with the fact that FBOFW is one of those strips where the main characters age in real time. I think the real-time aging makes it even more likely that fans will identify with and grow attached to characters, but being somewhat smack in between Elizabeth and April age-wise, I never found myself much identifying with either girl and that never changed. But I do find the internet reaction to the current events in the comic fascinating.

Understand, I'm not trying to judge the people who're reacting so strongly to the comic. It means little to me, but I'm fairly certain if you've been reading this blog long enough you can probably figure out that I have my own obsessions and interests that I react very strongly to, so all's fair.

Shelly's got a really nice post here that explains a bit about why she's upset by the whole deal. McBangle's another fan rather annoyed by the events who expresses said annoyance in some very entertaining ways.

And then of course there's Shaenon Garrity's Why I Hate Anthony post, which is positively marvelous reading even for someone, like me, who doesn't really care about the whole deal.

To be fair, I suspect that if I were more of a fan of the series, I WOULD be very upset. I've read it often enough to notice a few strips leaving a bad taste in my mouth. Particularly anything to do with Anthony's ex-wife. There's something about seeing a woman practically demonized for daring to have a professional career and not particularly wanting children in this day and age that just doesn't sit well with me.

I don't quarrel with Ms. Johnston's right to tell her story as she pleases, but I think it's a damn shame that it's going in a direction that's so unsatisfying to many people. But at least it's causing smart and funny people to blog about the whole deal.

Me personally, I'm glad I stick with Pearls Before Swine. As long as it's got crocodiles that speak in lower case with horrible grammar and a duck toting destructive weaponry (I love that duck), I'm happy.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

No Post Here.

Bleh, this week's hell. The only thing getting me through this mess is the knowledge that one day I will come out of it as a diabolical force of evil the likes of which the world has never seen!!!

Or something like that.

In a brief tangent: this makes me mildly boggled. Girl is no Stripperella, that's for damn sure. Heh.

Other than that, no post here. Feel free to flame me though. :-)

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

PFP 1st Annual FLAME WAR!

It's occurred to me in the midst of preparing for an oral argument that I'm really not even remotely ready for that I haven't taken part in a good flame war in ages.

This depresses me like you wouldn't believe. But since I don't particularly like trolling other people's blogs, the options for flame wars are so darned limited.

So I decided to make one!

So this post is an invitation for one and all to take part in the first (and only) annual Pretty Fizzy Paradise insult fest! You are all invited to take part!

All you need to do is flame the comments of this post! I will flame you back! You can flame each other! The most irrational, ridiculous or idiotic insults win! It'd be fun!

I'll start!

You're all horrible and annoying people and the only reason this blog is this shade of pink is that it was the most eye-searing template I could find and I want to cause you all PAIN!!!

Let's see what you got!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

My Thoughts on Batwoman

While doing my usual graceless stumble about the internet, I came across this post by Kevin Huxford wherein he, mostly tangentially, refers to Batwoman as a copy of a straight character with no defining characteristics other than being rich and gay.

This got me thinking and honestly, while I see where he's coming from, I completely disagree. I personally think that Batwoman has displayed quite a lot of character in the relatively few panels we actually saw her in. In fact, I quite adored her at first glance.

She was very spirited, and from their first scene together, we could see the passion, anger and left over issues between Renee and Kate. While I know that the punch she greeted Renee with bothered some folk (with fair reason I think), I liked how it added to the overall impression of the character. We've seen her be concerned, violent, petty and confident. We could extrapolate more of her personality based on the facets of her history and traits we already know. She makes a very good supporting character for Renee.

The problem, I think, really revolves around all the hype. I'm not sure how much of that was DC's doing and how much was the press leaping on the coattails of Batman Begins's popularity by latching onto a lesbian female counterpart to Bruce. But I think it led us to expect something very different.

I think the hype is behind the criticism that Batwoman has no real character aside from being gay. That's something that I don't think ever played out in the comics. While it's true that Kate's orientation was fairly front and center, it kind of had to be. She was introduced as the ex-lover of a female hero. It's fairly impossible to introduce someone as an ex-lover and then have that relationship not be the main thrust of their interaction.

It's kind of like whenever we see Superman interacting with Lori Lemaris or Lana Lang. Of COURSE the whole ex-love interest thing is going to be brought up pretty much every time, but no one criticizes those two ladies as being solely characterized as being straight even though their obvious straightness is being shoved down our throats pretty much every time they appear.

I remember one admittedly funny person dismissing Batwoman with the fictional exchange of "What's your favorite color?" "...Lesbian." But, I think that's ultimately unfair. What's Lori Lemaris's favorite color? Superman? But I suppose being straight is "normal" so it's unremarkable. Being a lesbian however, that has to be an overly flaunted plot point. Even when the treatment is exactly the same.

To be fair, I don't think the person making that critique was homophobic or in favor of downplaying alternate sexuality. I think it's more that all the hype had all of us over-sensitized to any mention of Kate's sexuality. We were already so jaded by the whole thing "Okay, we get it, she's a lesbian Batman" that any mention in the actual comics seemed like overkill. Or not enough.

I also don't think it helped that this happened simultaneously with the whole Cass Cain mess. (And I really never noticed that "Cassie Cain" was derived from "Kathy Kane". I'm so oblivious.) I'm not really a Batgirl fan, though I'm admittedly warming to her, so the notion that Kate was theoretically replacing Cass didn't bother me as much. ("what's your favorite color?" "...silent ninja girl." Heh, sorry. I couldn't resist.) I don't think DC was intentionally replacing one minority female Gotham character with another, but that's certainly what it SEEMED like. Which ultimately annoyed a lot of fans of Batgirl in particular and feminist fans in general (way to imply that female counterparts are interchangeable). It was a shame too, because I think Kate and Cass were so markedly different that they could easily co-exist.

I'd like to see how the two interact, actually. It seems like that could be a really interesting team-up.

I think basically the character just couldn't win, not with all the hype and issues surrounding her. Still, she really does have interesting chemistry with Renee, and there are clearly a lot of unresolved issues there. Renee's proven that she, at least, can sell a comic, even if the jury's out on Kate herself. So maybe there's still some hope for the character. I'd like to think so anyway. She's got a lot of unrealized potential.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Rereading Green Lantern Issues...

Every time I reread Kyle's run on Green Lantern, I'm incedibly amused by the fact that pretty much everyone Kyle knows figures out he's Green Lantern without him telling them. His mom asks him about it, his dad has those news clippings, Terry's got his sketches... I bet Radu even knows, even though I haven't reread those issues to be sure.

I just think it's funny.

Of course, to be fair, it's not surprising that Kyle does stuff like this or transforms in the middle of a coffee shop, or spends a lot of time flirting with his green girlfriend in public while in costume and expects no one to notice.

Really, Kyle's quite the capable Green Lantern, but he hasn't the sense God gave little green apples. He probably should just ditch the mask all together and embrace his public identity. It's not like MORE of his loved ones would die.

Okay, that was in poor taste. Heh.

Still though, it says something that even HAL managed to keep his identity more of a secret than Kyle does, even with the not-inconsiderable brain damage the man must have suffered thanks to all those tree limbs and newspapers and signs.

I admit, while I do enjoy the Guy-and-Kyle-in-space concept, I kinda miss seeing Kyle blunder through the whole secret identity business. He was so endearingly, wretchedly bad at it. :-)

Oh well, I'm sure he has other things to be endearingly stupid about. :-)

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Watching the Watchmen

No real blog post today. However, here's something you've probably already seen before:

Watchmen costumes!

They're certainly not quite what I expected, but then I'm not sure how well a lot of the costumes would really work on the big screen anyway. I think I like them though. Especially Rorschach's. It looks endearingly shabby. Ozymandius's though strikes me as a bit "Batman and Robin" shall we say. Maybe it'll look better in action.

I admit, I'm one of those people with doubts that Watchmen would really suit a big screen adaptation. It seems like they'd have to truncate a lot. But then, I did actually like V for Vendetta, so I suppose I'm very easy going with regards to film adaptations. Or my taste is incredibly questionable. Which is probably true anyway. :-)

Still, I think I'm looking forward to the movie. At least to see what they'll do to the story. :-)

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Green Lantern and Wonder Woman Sittin' In A Tree...

Kind of randomly, I came to the conclusion that John Stewart and Wonder Woman would make a really interesting couple.

I admit, I don't really have any basis for this. While they seem to interact friendly enough in JLA team books, there really isn't anything to support any sort of interpretation of romantic chemistry.

At the same time, I think they'd be really cute. I'm a little weird.

I think it's mostly because I've always seen John as the real crusader type of the main Earth Lanterns. Hal, Guy and Kyle are of course heroic, but well, they're reactionary. They save people falling out of buildings and fight off alien invaders, but none of them seem particularly inclined to pursue social change. In contrast, from his very first appearance, we're introduced to John as a man who'll confront a cop to protect some kids' right to play a game on the street. He's the sort to notice social injustice happening to another and put a stop to it.

He's also the architect of the group. He thinks and plans and considers. He's intellectually and emotionally stable in a way that very few superheroes get to be.

I dunno, I guess I just think they're remarkably compatible. They both have roles that on the surface might seem diametrically opposed. He's the architect/crusader, she's the diplomat/warrior. Diana's not as brilliant as Batman, perhaps, but she's a lot more emotionally stable and usually manages to keep a lot more perspective. She's as idealistic as Superman, in her own way, and also a major proponent for social change. I think they also have a very similar understanding of the weight of expectation on their shoulders.

I don't know if I think the relationship would work long term, necessarily, but I do think it'd be interesting to explore some time in JLA. Much more interesting than the umpteenth rehash of Superman/Wonder Woman or Batman/Wonder Woman sexual tension at any rate. It could be really neat!

Friday, March 07, 2008

Suddenly Sapphic Slayers?

I'm rather proud of that title by the way. I'm fond of aliteration.

I have to admit, I was not expecting the Buffy the Vampire Slayer comic to quite go in the direction that it did. And by that I mean exactly what you think I mean. (Fortress Keeper's got a scan at his blog for the curious).

I think that, tentatively at least, it's not a bad plot development. I admit, the cynic in me rather thinks that the whole thing is an attempt for more press, but at the same time I definitely think that a reminder that sexuality tends to be somewhat more fluid than we like to admit isn't a bad thing.

It's not, I think, terribly unheard of for a young woman, even one who primarily identifies as straight, to expand her horizons in such a manner. And as the Fortress Keeper points out, a love interest that's alive and human is something of a step up from some of Buffy's previous love interests.

I know quite a few girls my age or a bit younger who might identify a bit with Buffy's particular situation here too.

I do hope it won't end up resulting Willow and Buffy doing something both would regret. In real life, I'd highly doubt a possibly bi-curious girl and a lesbian best friend would risk a long-standing friendship in such a manner (even provided they were each others' type) especially with all of the Sunnydale baggage between them, so I'm hoping that'll hold out in the comic. I don't doubt Mr. Whedon's ability to tell an interesting story either way, but I'd personally rather see something a bit more true-to-life relationship wise.

I'll give credit where it's due though, normally I'm largely indifferent to the Buffy the Vampire Slayer comic, but right now at least I'm very interested in seeing what possible effects may result from this decision.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Strange thoughts about Female Characters in Green Lantern Books

You know, I was thinking. One of the many reasons I like Guy Gardner is that, unlike many other heroes, and certainly most of the other Lanterns, Guy actually gets to have relationships with women that aren't romantic.

I'm not counting group books like the JLA, mind you, since certainly Hal and Kyle have platonic relationships with the female superheroes on their team. But in their regular book, it was incredibly rare, if not utterly impossible, for Kyle or Hal to develop a relationship with a woman that wasn't going to turn romantic.

I remember one point that keeps getting brought up when Ragnell and I argue about Cowgirl, (I like Cowgirl, Ragnell doesn't) which I have to cede is that it's a little frustrating that Jillian couldn't possibly be introduced as a friend/work-colleague/foil to Hal without being a romantic interest. To be fair, I'm of the opinion that that sort of thing is completely in character for Hal. He really isn't the sort to have female friends. I don't think he's a misogynist mind, but I do think that for Hal women are distinctly the other and to be pursued romantically.

It would have been interesting if Jillian were perhaps married, or a lesbian, or otherwise unavailable, with the same saucy personality and the same work relationship to Hal. Then he would be in the very rare position of having a platonic relationship with a woman in his own book, not under the terms of being a superhero.

I suppose Hal DOES have that sort of relationship with Dinah Lance, already. But she hasn't been a lead character in his book since, well, before I was born. It's not something they tended to explore much in the issues I read, either. It was mainly Ollie-and-Dinah at one end, Hal (or Hal-and-Kari-Limbo) at the other, or Ollie-and-Hal at one end and Dinah at the other. I don't remember a lot of interaction strictly between Dinah and Hal except maybe during the whole wedding aftermath, which seems like a missed opportunity.

Kyle is similar really. During his run of Green Lantern, it was remarkably rare to see women appear that weren't love interests or women who made his love interests jealous. Merayn, perhaps, though she was in love with John. Maura, of course, but then she was his mom. In any case, like Hal, usually if the woman was single and available, she was romantically linked or set up as love interest-foil.

I always wondered if that wasn't a bit of bad writing really, since while Hal is the sort of guy I can see not having female friends that aren't "taken" or "prey", Kyle really does seem like he should be the token sensitive metrosexual straight guy that ends up hanging around a group of girls because he's sweet and treats them like people even if he kind of wants to do them too. Then again, to be fair, he's invariably involved with someone during his entire run. Still, it seems odd.

John's a bit harder to pin down, since he hasn't really solo'ed a series since Mosaic and he shines best in group superhero books which are less inclined to go for romance. Hopefully, his greater role in GL lately will mean I'll get to follow up this post with better conclusions. :-)

Anyway, Guy is different. If you look at Warrior, you'll see a plethora of Guy-and-female relationships that don't amount to anything romantic. Rita, who probably gets the least exposure of the regular girls in the comic, gets to tease him like a drinking buddy. Arisia is a little sister, (which gives her the opportunity to display different facets than she got to as Hal's somewhat-underage-but-retconned-as-not girlfriend) while Veronna, for all that she establishes herself as Guy's betrothed, remains more of a best friend/confidant/support role than a love interest.

And Guy's mom is scary.

Even in GLC, the relationship between Guy and the most prominent female character Dr. Natu is not even remotely sexually charged or romantic. Okay, he does hit on her, but that's usually with the express intention of pissing her off and pushing her forward. Soranik's more a protégé than anything else. We haven't seen much with Guy and Iolande, but hopefully that will change as the series goes on.

Admittedly, a lot of the difference may be writing style. GLC is more of a group book than a singular one. And as for Warrior, Beau Smith is probably one of the best writers out there when it comes to including female characters where one least expects them and awesome female characters in general. This isn't an attack against the other writers, just an acknowledgement that when it comes down to it, Beau Smith's amazing at introducing female characters that aren't intended to be romantic. He even includes women as random walk-on one shot characters like secret agents or doctors, and many of them don't even flirt with the lead! is kind of sad that I'm not being sarcastic with this praise, but it is a fairly rare thing even among writers who have a good handle on writing satisfying female characters.

Some of it, I think, is in the characters themselves though. Guy's got two factors going for him that Hal or Kyle don't have. First, as of Warrior at least, he's still grieving over Ice. To be fair, of course, Kyle lost Alex, but then Kyle's coping mechanism's different. I don't think it's unrealistic for someone as young and emotional as Kyle tends to be to react to losing someone he loves like that to dive into another relationship as soon as possible to try to get over it. Guy's a different sort of fellow though and it shows that it took quite a lot longer for him to enter into a romantic relationship and in that case mind-control was involved. Then when he had that liaison with Bea, Tora was still, unspoken, a very large part of it.

The second factor is that he's a immature jerk. This doesn't seem like it'd be a positive element in determining whether a guy has platonic friendships with women, but in a weird way, it is. See, as much as I personally think Hal's much more of a dick than Guy is, he's also incredibly charming and can carry off even the lamest pick-up lines. Kyle on the other hand is cute and earnest and nearly blindingly handsome. I suppose if I were a straight female in the DCU and saw either of those men, my first reaction would not be platonic either. (And then if it were Kyle, I would die. Heh.)

Guy though? Guy's not actually unattractive, sure, and in some panels, usually when his mouth isn't moving, he's actually kind of hot. But he's certainly loud, obnoxious, abrasive and off-putting. I'd imagine, much as I love him, that my first reaction to meeting a guy like him would amount to throwing my drink in his face. But he has the kind of appeal that grows on you in spite of yourself. He's the sort of guy you spend most of your time bickering with or exchanging insults with, until you realize that somehow or another, you've actually become friends without ever realizing it. And really, he can be quite nice when he wants to be. It's just that he's more likely to want to be long after all thoughts of a romantic relationship have vacated the room.

I don't really have a point to this, I just thought it was interesting to consider. Especially now that Kyle's in GLC. I wonder if that'll change the dynamics some. I hope not. I'd like to keep these girls alive, ya know? :-)

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Super Rumors!

This post about a possible Supergirl movie intrigues and horrifies me.

Admittedly I'm mostly horrified by the thought of Mischa Barton as Supergirl. I mean...well, I hate to insult someone I don't know, but from what I've seen the girl's simply terrible. I know Supergirl's not necessarily a complex role, but still, she makes Helen Slater look positively Shakespearian.

I have to disagree with the commenters though. I don't think it'd be a good idea to introduce Supergirl in a Superman movie. Not in the least because I don't think they'd do it well. I actually liked Superman Returns, mind, but I really don't trust their capability for introducing a character like Kara. The movies always seemed to play up the alienated orphan aspect of Superman a lot more (in contrast to say Smallville or Lois and Clark which plays up the Earth-raised aspect and the Kents) and I think Kara would destablize that. Also, look how well Superman Returns introduced a Superboy concept, so to speak, with Jason...

I think it'd be better to just make a Supergirl movie. It's not like we're talking about Power Girl here. Even non-comic book fans have some vague idea who Supergirl is and recognize her as the cousin of Superman. She really doesn't need that much explanation besides that. And this way, annoying fanatic fans can decide for themselves whether they want to acknowledge she exists. :-P

One thing though, I really hope they strengthen the whole secret identity aspect of the character. Kara in the comics right now, at least as far as I've read, really doesn't seem to have a very strong one, and while a great many of my favorite comics characters have no secret ID, I think that can make a movie a bit more difficult. Secret identities help make superheroes relatable and unlike a comic in which we have issue after issue to get to know characters, a movie's just an hour and a half. Secret identities let superheroes show, fairly quickly, sides that would take a couple of issues to see in a comic.

Either way, I definitely think a Supergirl movie would have a decent shot. I remember how many little girls I saw buying Supergirl merchandise when I worked in the toy store, there's clearly still a name recognition and market. I'd imagine they'd have to change the costume up though. The current one may work in a comic, but it seems like it'd look awfully slutty on a real girl.

I just really hope the Mischa Barton thing's just substance free speculation because while I'm sure the girl's very nice, and she's undoubtedly pretty, she acting is like nails on a chalkboard for me. Bleh.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008


Okay, so I've been slowly catching up on movie news. I'm surprised at guy cast as Rincewind for the Pratchett movie. He's a lot older than I expected. (I'd always imagined Rincewind as early middle age at the most.)

Oh well, to be honest, while I love anything Granny Weatherwax I never really got into the rest of the Discworld books, so I'm not terribly invested in it.

Besides, this guy apparently was the voice of Count Duckula which means that he can do no wrong. Ever. :-)

It's funny, as much as I religiously watched the cartoon as a kid, the thing that mesmerized me the most was the logo of the Thames at the very beginning. The words reflected in the water. I dug that. I was a weird child.

Monday, March 03, 2008

Dresden Comic Preview!

Newsarama's got a few preview pages from the first Dresden Files comic up here.

My first reaction is "thank god, it's not like Anita Blake". I really didn't think it would be but once bitten, twice shy. Yeek.

I think I like it. So far anyway. Murphy (I presume the blonde is Murphy) is a bit angular for my taste, but I like her facial expressions. I also like the clothes and the way she's hunched in the trenchcoat (and also that the trenchcoat is over her hair like that). Harry (I'm presuming the scruffy disheveled guy is Harry :-)) looks good too. I'm not really getting the impression of height though, but that might just be the angle. (I like tall men. :-))

The balding redhead looks very odd to me though. There's something very strange about the manner in which he's bald. It looks more like a shaved monk's tonsure than natural hair growth (or lack thereof) to me. I'm not sure I like the cover though, the hair's awfully shaggy and he looks way too young. Hmph.

I like complaining and am never truly satisfied. :-)

So far though, I have to admit, I'm really looking forward to it. And now that I know the art is not remarkably hideous like certain other Dabel productions, I'm practically counting the days. It looks pretty neat.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

On Dave Sim, Cerebus, and Genius as a Personal Pardon

I've been thinking about Dave Sim. It's perhaps understandable. He's the subject of my most recent newsarama column. Ragnell's also blogged about him.

I haven't yet, but now I will.

I haven't read Cerebus. I've looked at it in the store. I've pulled a volume or two down from the shelf. I've considered the recommendations of friends who assure me that Jaka's Story is so incredibly moving, for example, that I'll be able to forget the opinions and philosophies that the man expouts.

I've opened it, skimmed enough to at least have an idea that the man's reputation for quality and genius does not appear undeserved. I very rarely respond to visual imagery alone, but I remember being struck by certain panels, just gazing at them.

And then I put it back on the shelf.

I can't help but think of Leni Riefenstahl. I'm sure I'm breaking some sort of Internet law in doing so. I await accusations that I'm equating general anti-feminism/misogyny (while I generally balk at using the term to describe someone I do not personally know, I think that we've seen more than enough of Sim's philosophy from his own mouth...or keyboard, at least, to be able to make that judgment with a reasonably clear conscience) to the atrocities committed by the Nazi party. The truth is though, that I'm using Leni Riefenstahl as a comparison because she's one I know quite a bit about. I'm sure we can all find our own personal examples of a particularly talented creator with beliefs or practices that we find personally abhorrent.

Leni Riefenstahl is an unquestioned genius in the field of film-making. The techniques and imagery that she used in Triumph of the Will can be seen aped everywhere from Citizen Kane to Star Wars. In a strictly technical sense, she may well be the greatest film-maker that ever lived.

She was also a nazi.

Of course, the amount of Riefenstahl's actual involvement in the Nazi party is debatable. She certainly claimed later that she was unaware of the true nature of the concentration camps, for example, or that Triumph of the Will was going to be used a Propaganda film. She might well be telling the truth.

But she's also a woman who read Mein Kampf and said that she became a National Socialist upon reading the first page. She's a woman who saw the 1935 Nuremberg Rally, the pronouncements that eventually became the Nuremberg Laws, and saw in it the possibilities for another propaganda film.

It's often argued that a creator's personal beliefs shouldn't be allowed to taint the merits of their artwork. I think in an ideal world that's probably true. I think in the real world, however, it is not.

When it comes down to it, art, be it a painting or a sculpture, novel, film or a comic book, is an act of emotion and passion. It's an act of sharing from the soul. The beliefs of the artist can't be denied because ultimately they're all in there. One can look at the Lord of the Rings, for example, and see all the elements of Tolkein's particular interpretation of Catholicism bared for the world to see, if we know what we're looking for.

I think that's ultimately why so many of us try to avoid reading interviews or political views of the particular creators that we enjoy. We think that this will "color our perception". The truth is, that we're not afraid to bias ourselves, we're afraid of the opposite. We're afraid that by knowing a little about the creator's views, our own blinders will be removed and we'll see the truth in the artist's work.

And then it doesn't matter how much of a technical genius the creator is, because the end result is like a world class chef cooking with bad fish. It doesn't matter how beautiful the dressing, or how exquisite the sauce, when you're vomiting your dinner up later.

Art isn't made in a vacuum. Morality. Principles. Right-and-Wrong, all of these things are a part of the world we live in, and they're a part of each of us. We're not going to agree with every talented writer or artist out there, and I'm certainly not arguing that we should destroy all the works of art by people who express unsavory beliefs or commit abhorrent actions. But it is wrong to pretend that these actions or beliefs don't exist. Genius is not an all-purpose excuse. Talent is not a universal pardon.

When it comes down to it, we have no obligation to judge any piece of art solely on its own technical merits. We have every right to consider every aspect of the creator when evaluating a piece of work. We have every right to completely dismiss an artist, to completely avoid his body of work, if he's someone who we can't stomach. I've decided that I will not read Cerberus. I may change my mind later, but it's my decision and I don't feel guilty over it at all.

From his words, Dave Sim is probably fairly called a misogynist. It's true that his comments are not the danger to women that the actions of many other misogynists are. It's also true that for all his ranting, I've never heard that the man ever personally harmed a woman.

But at the same time, I consider how Leni Riefenstahl never, to my knowledge, harmed a Jewish person. She's can't be accused of killing any Jewish people herself. She's certainly not culpable for the death camps or gas chambers. She may indeed have never known they existed.

But she certainly helped promote an idea that, by most accounts, she genuinely believed in, which involved the dehumanization of a large group of people, and was the core of a movement that acted according to this idea and led to one of the greatest atrocities the world's ever seen.

The only real difference that I can see is that, fortunately, there is no such equivalent movement for Mr. Sim.

Saturday, March 01, 2008


Huh! Yesterday was Superman's birthday!

Or, well, anniversary. Whatever.

Still...70 years. That's a long damn time.


Here's to 70 more, yeah?