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ohtani's jacket

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  1. I went three episodes deep. They've done a really good job of mixing up the pairings this season so that you get subplots with characters who haven't interacted before. And the new character has a neat connection to the previous series. Oh, and of course all of the Terry/Kreese stuff is awesome. Loved the Eagle Fang Karate training.
  2. I'm not gonna binge watch too much tonight, but the first episode was good. It's back!
  3. I had some back issues when I was younger, but I haven't read the entire thing. I will go for it.
  4. I finished reading Planetary, which is very good, excellent even, and the ends. Although, I believe there were delays in real time. I've been looking for something to sink my teeth into. I started reading Fables and Saga. Both are in the world building stage. Fables has a stronger hook given it uses famous fairy tale characters. I'm not how I feel about Saga yet. It's strange reading fantasy characters that speak and act like contemporary adults, but that is very much Vaughan's style. Does anyone have recommendations for a binge-worthy book?
  5. I read the re-colourized collection of Dave Stevens' Rocketeer. I normally dislike re-colouring of older comics, but I have to admit it was a pretty good colouring job. I'm sure everyone here is familiar with the quality of Stevens' work. It's just a shame that the stories up and end just when it's getting good. Another thing I finished was Terry Moore's original Strangers in Paradise mini-series. This was a series I was aware of back in the 90s but didn't really know what it was all about. The art was slightly more cartoony than I was expecting, but I liked the overall dynamic. I could easily have seen myself picking this series up in the 90s alongside Bone and the other titles I was reading. I also finished the 40th volume of Yasuhisa Hara's Kingdom, which marks the halfway point in the series. It was easily the most impressive volume of the manga for me personally. I ran through a gamut of emotions, almost cried, gave the book a clap of applause, was taken aback by the depth of the storytelling, and was overwhelmed that Hara had stayed so committed to the manga for ten years. What I thought was a good manga has now been elevated to the next level.
  6. I finished the Garth Ennis/Steve Dillon Punisher mini-series. I guess Ennis' take on the Punisher character wasn't bad, and Dillon's art was all right, but the sophomoric attempts at black humour were too much for me.
  7. I made it to the end of the first arc of John Ostrander & Tom Mandrake's Spectre. I know I've read this series before, but I can't recall if I made it through to the very end. It was so long ago that it feels like I'm reading it again for the first time. I don't entirely love the first arc, but the last three issues are some of the most intense stuff I've read in a while. I guess I had completely forgotten the details of the story because the finale hit me like a ton of bricks and the last panel is flat out amazing. It's a really grim and gritty 90s comic, but the storytelling is uncompromising, especially for a non-Vertigo book.
  8. I made it through all nine issues of the Howard the Duck Magazine. I'm not a fan of Howard the Duck, but I thought it was one of the better black and white Marvel mags. Mantlo is more concerned with continuity than Gerber. He wraps up loose ends from the color series. and even gives characters like the Kidney Lady an origin (which may not please some Gerber HtD fans.) There is plenty of satire, but it's not as outrageous as Gerber's work. There's some obligatory nudity in the early issues, and an infamous bedroom scene between Bev and Howard, but eventually they ditch the adult approach. Howard works as a cabbie in Cleveland for a while, becomes a vampire, returns to Duckworld, and eventually breaks up with Bev. Mantlo had a plan to have Howard become a huge TV star overnight, plummet out of popularity overnight, end up as an attraction at the Los Angeles zoo, and be reunited with Bev, leading to a wedding. However, he quit the series, and they decided to can the black and white magazine. They claimed he was returning to the world of color comics but that never materialized. The magazine's biggest strength is its art. Colon's work looks better in black and white, and when Colon's not penciling the stories, you get art from John Buscema, Michael Golden, and even a Marshall Rogers Batman parody. There's even a pin-up page by Dave Sim. If you want to read about the further adventures of Howard after Gerber departs then the magazine is the closest thing to the original, and blows other black and white mags like Dracula out of the water.
  9. Jonny Quest was a wonderful action-adventure series. It's a shame it couldn't hold onto its audience, but who knows how much longer it would have lasted for with all of Comico's financial troubles. The second issue is one of the most moving comics I've read. A real heartbreaker. I've always liked William Messner-Loebs, now I hold him in even higher esteem. Thankfully, Comico pumped out a number of JQ specials and mini-series before the license expired. The Doug Wildey Jonny Quest Classics were beautifully illustrated, and the Adam Kubert art in the Jezebel Jade miniseries is exquisite. A delightful series, but what a toxic letter column! I have no idea why Diana Schutz indulged David Malcolm Porta the way she did.
  10. I read the J.M. DeMatteis/Keith Giffen Doctor Fate mini-series from 1987. Another post-Crisis misfire for me. That Giffen art that I loved as a kid does not register with me at all as an adult. I was kind of hoping that reading the mini-series would prompt me to continue with ongoing title, but I might have to skip it unless someone can convince me otherwise.
  11. FWIW, this site shows the songs that have been added to the list in recent editions: https://www.listchallenges.com/1001-songs-you-must-hear-before-you-die-2017/list/25
  12. All the criticisms I read were either about the politics or how stupid the characters act.
  13. The Gap band, one of my all-time favorite bands.
  14. I finally finished the Neon Genesis Evangelion Rebuild movies. Now I know I'm getting old because they were confusing as hell.
  15. I burned through Y: The Last Man. It seems to be a series that a lot of people have a problem with due to politics, but I thought it was a ripping yarn. Briskly paced, easy to read, and a great cliffhanger at the end of each issue. I wound up binge reading it, by my own standards, which raises the question, did comics become like TV or did TV become like comics? When it came time for the big reveal, I was a little disappointed and thought it was gonna be another mystery that's so big it's impossible to pay off, but ultimately the story was bigger than the premise and the final run of issues was a fantastic finale. I wouldn't put it up there with the very best Vertigo stuff, but I liked it more than 100 Bullets.
  16. Congrats on getting to the end, Liam. 2005 I ended up listening to Arcade FIre's Funeral album, and I think their music works better for me as an album than as singles. Definitely one of the best albums of the 00s for me, at least through 2004-05. 2005 was the last year that I lived in New Zealand, but I was busy exploring music from the past. Now I'm busy exploring music from that past. Sufjan Stevens was recommended to me some years ago, so I am familiar with his work to an extent. The songs that blew me away from the book were the Sigur Ros & Anthony & the Johnsons songs. I've listened to a few Sigur Ros albums before, and they're challenging albums to listen to, but Hoppipolla is a beautiful song. I listened to the Anthony & the Johnsons' album, I Am a Bird Now, on the strength of Hope There's Someone, and I thought it was a great album. As usual, here is a selection of songs that moved me one way or the other: Round 2 Round 3 For hip hop, I listened to a dozen or so albums. Little Brother's The Minstrel Show as my favorite. Common's Be album was also good.
  17. Roy Thomas was also able to exit Conan on a high, penning the 10th anniversary issue where Conan finally deals with his grief over Belit's death. Conan had spent a couple of years wandering about having adventures in the wake of her death. Occasionally, there would be references to her, but we never saw Conan grieve over her. This actually bugged me a bit as I wanted to see how a barbarian would react to these types of circumstances. I didn't expect him to have an arguments with God like Jonah did, but I wanted to see how his brooding would play out. Thankfully, Roy handled it beautifully and signed off with one of his best stories. Not sure where I'll go next with Conan. There is so much content I haven't read yet.
  18. Big day for me as I finished up Jonah Hex, Sandman Mystery Theatre, and Roy Thomas' original run on Conan the Barbarian. Jonah Hex remained a high quality book until the end, though it takes a dip toward the end when the book goes bi-monthly and Fleisher is busy at work on the Hex series. The last three issues are drawn and colored by the Gray Morrow. The artwork is gorgeous and the people are beautiful, but Morrow's style doesn't fit the gritty image of the series. The Crisis tie-in is awful, and yet it isn't the most frustrating part of the conclusion. Throughout the series, one of the most important aspects of the story was the women in Jonah's life, and yet we never find out what happens to Adrian or Emmylou, and even Mei Ling is treated shabbily. I suspect Fleisher felt that he could always return Jonah to the West and continue telling these stories, and indeed a few years later, Fleisher wrote one last Jonah story in Secret Origins which confirms that Jonah made it back to the West. It also sets up some lore about some tragedy befalling Jonah's son. I don't know if another writer followed up on that. I'm currently weighing up whether to read any of the later Jonah runs. Fleisher ended up penning over 100 Jonah stories. It was a brilliant run. Aside from the unresolved plot points, the only part I didn't like was when Jonah was abducted and taken to China, and even then I liked the story on the boat ride back. I'm gonna miss that ugly mug. Sandman Mystery Theatre ended strongly. I was pleased that Seagle resolved the things that had been nagging at me about Wesley & Dian's relationship. The final issue is really beautiful. It's almost as perfect as the ending to Casablanca. It's amazing how Seagle was able to wrap up so many plot points within a single issue. There were more stories the creators could have told, but they were fighting an uphill battle with sales. Having Wesley pull the plug on his own comic was brilliant. Personally, I thought the middle of the series was when the book was firing on all cylinders, but the book maintained its integrity until the end, which is rare with comic book runs.
  19. I don't understand why they had to have Crisis on Infinite Earths let alone this New 52 thingamajiggy.
  20. I've read Warlord up until Grell left. I haven't read anything after that. I also haven't read Grell's return to the character. I generally like Grell's work. I enjoyed Jon Sable and his Green Arrow stuff. I can't remember much about Warlord, to be honest, but I was hooked enough to read it through 70 odd issues.
  21. Today I read Conan the Barbarian #100, which some of you may know is the conclusion to the Belit saga. It wasn't as moving as it might have been if the readers didn't know what was going to happen in advance, but it was beautifully rendered by Buscema and Chan, and a monumental chapter in the series given that Conan spent so many issues with the Black Corsairs. I've been reading Conan and Jonah Hex at the same time, so I've had these duel narratives of Conan and Belit and Jonah and Mei Ling play out simultaneously. I prefer the way Fleisher handled Jonah and Mei Ling to the way Thomas wrote Conan and Belit, but I'm yet to see how Thomas handles the aftermath. Curse you DC for cancelling Jonah Hex in 1985! Actually, apparently it escaped cancellation three times. That's unfortunate because I honestly think Fleisher's run is one of the best comic book runs ever.
  22. I've been going through a bit of a rut with Sandman Mystery Theatre. I've never read a single issue of Blackhawk, so I wasn't sure what I should make of the Janos Prohaska depiction. To me, the most interesting thing about that arc was Burke's reaction to the murders. Then I really didn't like the Return of the Scarlet Ghost arc until the last issue where Wagner and Seagle drastically upped the ante. The Crone was better. The relationship between Wesley and Dian has grown bleak, but I found that storyline more interesting than the murder mystery. I guess one of the difficult parts of this series was coming up with murder mysteries. I'm not really a fan of how they used comics and then radio as the backdrop for the murders. It seems over-the-top to me that there would be a spree of murders in either industry. I realize that the writers want to tap into everything that was shaping society in the late 30s, but it's a tad contrived at times. I read Amethyst: Princess of Gemworld over the past few weeks. It's a comic I always seem mentioned as an underrated title. The first issue was rushed and felt like a comic for a toy line, but once it settled into a groove, it was a highly enjoyable max-series. The most outstanding thing about it is Ernie Colon's artwork. I'd probably recommend it on that basis alone. And I finally finished Five Years Later through to the last issue written by the Bierbaums. What a complete and utter non-investment. I remember the first time I read Five Years Later it was after I had read all of the classic runs on Legion of Super-Heroes, and I really enjoyed the first dozen issues before Giffen stepped back from the series. This but this time round it felt inconsequential. I got absolutely nothing out of it, and a lot of the time it was just plain confusing. My opinion of post-Crisis reboots is starting to nosedive.
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