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ohtani's jacket

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  1. I was thinking about reading 1001 Nights of Snowfall. Undecided about any of the other spinoffs.
  2. I finished Fables today, a series I first began reading back in December. It had its ups and downs as you’d expect any series to do that lasts 150 issues, but it consistently entertained me day in, day out for a solid five months. I read that Willingham originally envisioned the series running for one issue longer than Cerebus. I don’t know if Willingham had that many stories left to tell, but now I hear that the book is returning for another 12 issue arc, so we’ll see how that goes. A lot of people comment on how the book should’ve ended after the first 75 issues, and would have been better as a standard 60-75 issue Vertigo series. I never really felt that way reading it. In fact, I didn’t find the reveal of the Adversary’s identity, or the final battle against his Empire, to be hugely momentous. I actually felt that the conclusion to a lot of the arcs were anticlimactic. It got to the point where I started wondering if it was intentional on Willingham’s part or a weakness of his as a writer. What held the book together for me was the rich cast of characters and the uniform look that Buckingham and Leialoha gave the series. Willingham was lucky to have the same artists on the book for the majority of its run. Many people had strong opinions about this series. It almost rivaled the type of feedback you see from a television show. As I read the complaints, I began to develop a type of mentality of “Ok, let’s see what the writer chooses to do with these characters” instead of worrying about what I wanted to see happen. I didn’t agree with every decision Willingham made, but I wasn’t incensed by any of them, and I remained invested in the characters. Nobody’s forced to like the direction an artist goes in, but I sometimes think we lose track of an artist’s right to take things in a new direction. That said, I’m not sure where Fables would rank in my echelon of great comic book runs. Probably in my top 25 If it had been a bit more emotionally satisfying instead of intellectually stimulating it may have ranked higher. There were a few moments that were genuinely emotional, and well built, but the highs weren’t quite as high as other runs I’m fond of. Still, a remarkable achievement for any creative team to last that long, and now they want to come back for more?
  3. I thought the ending was all right, however... It definitely wasn't an ending that kicked the show into the stratosphere of all-time great TV shows, I'll say that much.
  4. Ruth has always been into hip hop. They've used Biggie, Wu Tang-Clu and Tribe Called Quest before for Ruth's scenes. I loved that surprise Killer Mike cameo, especially after they used his song "Untitled" so well. Great episode. Hand me on the edge of my seat right until the end.
  5. The first episode of the second half of Ozark season 4 was insanely good.
  6. And that's only scratching the surface: "Doc Rivers has now lost nine Game 7s, the most in NBA history. He has lost five Game 7s at home, the most in NBA history. He has lost each of his last four Game 7s, the equal-worst streak in NBA history. He has 29 losses in potential close-out games, the most in NBA history. His .341 win percentage in close-out games, among coaches with 20+ games, is the worst in NBA history."
  7. I guess you're supposed to watch them together, but I thought the second episode was much better than the first. Much more suspenseful.
  8. Watched the first episode. Lalo was the highlight, of course.
  9. Stan Sakai's run at Mirage was nowhere near as good as his stuff at Fantagraphics. I prefer Usagi in black and white much like I prefer samurai films in black and white to color. The stories didn't seem to resonate as much, either. They were easy reads, but didn't have the same energy. I believe things pick up again with his Dark Horse work. The Aardvark-Vanaheim/Renegade Press Flaming Carrot Comics were a lot of fun. I really enjoy Bob Burden's sense of humour. His ideas didn't always stick, but he was the master of absurd situations and quirky one-liners. I'm interested to see how well Flaming Carrot transitions into the 90s.
  10. I really enjoyed Camelot 3000. Ordinarily, I would hate this sort of premise -- King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table are resurrected and fight space aliens in the future -- but Bolland's art was brilliant. I understand there were all sorts of delays with the book because of how slowly he worked, but it left me wishing that he'd done more interior work during his career. Probably more of a triumph in collected form than it was off the shelves. Nonetheless, DC's 80s experiments were a fertile time in mainstream American comics.
  11. Satanico Blue Panther El Dandy Atlantis Pirata Morgan Bestia Salvaje Virus Black Terry Solar Negro Navarro
  12. Are there any Hellboy fans here? I re-read the original mini-series, and the DHP serial that followed. I don't want to judge it too harshly since Byrne scripted the first series, and the serial was Mignola's first crack at doing the writing, but is there a point where Hellboy comes into its own?
  13. I have been reading individual issues. I'll probably read Brubaker's Daredevil after I'm done with Bendis.
  14. No, I haven't read much post-Nocenti/JRJR and Man without Fear.
  15. I've mostly been reading Brubaker's Captain America and Bendis' Daredevil. Brubaker's Captain America is one of the most cinematic comic books I've ever read. It reads like a film. It has the most beautifully choreographed fight scenes of any superhero book I've read, and no matter who the artist is, the book has the same look. Even the coloring adds a lightning effect similar to the visual tone of a film or television series. It has an incredibly realistic feel to it, right down to the detail in Captain America's costume. I don't know how many years ago it was released, but to me, this is a cutting edge comic and what modern comics should aspire to surpass. Another notable thing about it is how drawn out the storylines are. It feels like Brubaker is playing the long game, which writers aren't always allowed to do when they're given the keys to a Marvel character. Bendis' Daredevil isn't as good, but it's piqued my interest enough that I actively want to read it. Daredevil is one of my favorite characters, but I haven't read any of the modern runs on the title. The hook for me in Bendis' run so far is the idea that all this tragedy follows Matt every time he puts on the Daredevil costume, and the notion that he should retire as Daredevil and never wear the costume again, which of course plays into the idea of how much of Matt's identity is made up of the Daredevil persona, and vice versa. The art is kind of unusual for a Marvel comic, but I keep reminding myself that I grew up on Frank Miller/Sienkiewicz comics. Some of Maleev's art is really beautiful, and some of it is awkward and poor storytelling. Bendis' over-writing isn't as bad as I thought it would be. Sometimes he'll throw in a reference to a song or something that makes me cringe a bit, but that's about it. I am slowly discovering that there is value in comics post-2000.
  16. Fair enough. Jason Tatum just joined the list with Crawford.
  17. Jamal Crawford had as many 50 point games in the NBA as Bob McAdoo, Larry Bird, Moses Malone, Tracy McGrady, Carmelo Anthony, Anthony Davis, Kyrie Irving, George Mikan, Tiny Archibald, and Karl Malone. Good enough for 22nd all-time. He also scored 50 points for four different franchises. He's actually 57st all-time in scoring with just under 20k points. But he was never an All-Star.
  18. Staggering headline to walk up to. One of those Aussies that us Kiwis loved to hate.
  19. He was the British wrestler Dave Larsen. He appears later on as the masked wrestler, Zarak.
  20. How about DeRozan breaking a Wilt Chamberlain record? 35 points or more, shooting 50% of better, in seven consecutive games.
  21. Damnit, time to put on my Betty Davis records.
  22. I read Hulk: Future Imperfect and The Thanos Quest, both of which would make my (very short) shortlist of best Marvel comics of the 90s. The former is set in a future where the Hulk has become the insane ruler of a nuclear wasteland, and the latter sees Thanos travel around the cosmos kicking butt and collecting Infinity Gems. Both books have outstanding artwork, Perez on Future Imperfect and Ron Lim on The Thanos Quest, as well as solid writing. Peter David was knee deep in his Hulk run at this time, and Starlin had just made a triumphant return with Silver Surfer. In many ways, this was the end of "my" era of Marvel where the writers still had equal billing to the artists. I was particularly impressed by Ron Lim's artwork. I didn't realize that he was so good. My biggest memory of Lim is being profoundly disappointed when he took over the pencils on Infinity Gauntlet. What surprised me most was the range of facial expressions he was able to get out of Thanos, especially those looks of despair whenever he was in the doghouse with Mistress Death. Villain-led titles aren't the easiest to pull off, but Thanos is such a multi-dimensional character that Starlin is able to make it work. You know he's going to succeed in his quest and claim all of the Infinity Gems, but it's a bunch of fun. The Maestro in Future Imperfect is likewise charismatic, and quite an outstanding character in an era not renowned for introducing a lot of new outstanding characters. So yeah, thumbs up for both.
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