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Comics: Commentary Track for the September 29th Buy Pile

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Every week I do a column full of comic book reviews as I’ve done since March 2003 and currently published at Comic Book Resources. Then, after the reviews post, I try to come over to my blog and expand on the thoughts and ideas listed there. Sometimes it’s profound, sometimes it’s gibberish, but it’s always about comics … let’s see what we get this week!

What? This week’s reviews

IT’S LIKE DEJA VU ALL OVER AGAIN: I might be going nuts. Again.

I didn’t mention it in the reviews, but I’m pretty sure I read this issue of Casanova before.


I have an extremely vivid memory of Casanova hiding his mother with a super advanced race of “primitives” on some extradimensional Tyroc-styled island. I remember it like I remember dancing to Madonna’s “Crazy For You” at a junior high school dance (yes, I’m 37 years old, get over it) or the words to “Buddy” by De La Soul, Jungle Brothers, Tribe Called Quest and Monie Love.

However, Googling the storylines that have been out proved me wrong. There is no previous issue like this, according to Wikipedia and several other sources. There is no proof that I have ever seen a story like this before, much less one involving Casanova Quinn.

Then again, throughout my life I’ve been subject to a number of clairvoyant dreams. During my sleep, I’d see myself pushing the elevator button in the student union building at USC, talking to a friend of mine and carrying two backpacks. I’d wake up, confused, noticing my one backpack. Three weeks later, I’d agree to lug some stuff upstairs for another friend, and there I’d be, pushing the button, balancing both backpacks and muttering to myself like a nutjob. I’ve literally had hundreds of these dreams, but never seen anything useful like lottery numbers or launch codes or where a criminal with a bounty on his head might be stashed. Just boring everyday stuff that I don’t care about seeing in advance. Dumbest super power ever.

I say all that to say that reading this issue, three times yesterday, gave me the weirdest feeling of deja vu. No idea why. I probably foresaw this storyline months ago and was too sleep deprived by waking up twice a night to help the baby and never recorded it. Matt Fraction’s wildly personal revelations at the end, that’s just plain entertaining.

THERE ARE NO WEAK CHARACTERS: Wow. That prose bit with Skid-Mark is amazing, dude. I’ve been a G.I. Joe fan since the early ’80s, and I don’t ever remember even thinking about this guy. I never bought his vehicle the Desert Fox (I preferred the cleaner lines and double gun of the VAMP). Duane Swierczynski took that blank canvas and really, really did something huge with it, the same way early issues of Hearts & Minds made Firefly and Trip-Wire bigger than life. What’s greatest for me is that, way back when the franchise was with Devil’s Due, I had a proposal for stories like this, focusing on single characters (I had a great idea for Flash and Sci-Fi that still nags at me today), so seeing this makes me very happy (and I believe the Legion can benefit from a similar approach). So, for your information, yes, I will totally pay my own money for this prose anthology if the rest of the work is even half as good as this. Jot that down.

Oh, speaking of, if the … hang on … what the heck? Did I forget to note some comics yesterday? Ah crap. Hang on, let’s check my notes. Crap.

Okay, lemme do this before I forget …

MISSING PERSONS REPORT: Because of sleep deprivation or whatever, I missed some books. Here are my thoughts, as noted:

  • Chew #14: Got some character work, some action, plot stalled a little, not bad.
  • G.I. Joe: Hearts and Minds #5: Cobra recruits shined (showing reasons why they chose that side, the geographical and cultural disparities, et cetera) but Blowtorch fizzled due to not getting specific (in weapons system or rationale).
  • Next Gen Warz #1: Boring, predictable, tedious and not at all worth the money.
  • Artifacts #2: Meh
  • Amazing Spider-Man #644: Meh (Rhino scene was cute).
  • Star Wars Force Unleashed 2: Vader’s fate didn’t seem to mesh, unless this is like Infinities (and not noted) and it didn’t put all the toys back where they belong … which was weird. Rahm Kota has to be addressed before you get to Yavin, dude. Heck, before you get to Tatooine.

No idea why I accidentally skipped those. Musta been super sleepy last night.

ANYTHING ELSE? I am sure I should say some other stuff but I’m swamped. My apologies to the brave creators who I missed this week. Yes, even you, Layman.

Play nice, back later.

Playing (Music): “Some Like It Hot” by Powerstation

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