Thursday, August 22, 2019

Terrificon 2019 Review Part 1 - Dan Jurgens

Summer is convention season and the big convention on my list has become Terrificon. Amidst a sea of 'comic cons' which are more pop culture get togethers, Terrificon remains a near-pure comic book based convention.

This is a convention with a true boatload of creators which range from legends of the field to the main creators I grew up with to current hot writers and artists. The guest list kept growing until it became clear that not all the books I was hoping to get signed would fit in my backpack in one go around and I would need to decant and refill the bag at the car a couple of times.

It also is the con where I focus my commission ideas at it has the best guests for a Supergirl fan like me.

As the 3 day con was so massive for me, I will be covering it in 3 posts, each focusing on who I got a commission from while rehashing other stories.

I was absolutely thrilled when Dan Jurgens was announced as a guest. Jurgens has been such a huge part of Superman, and by extension Supergirl's, history that he has been someone I have hoped to meet forever. And, given that it was during the Reign of the Supermen that the Matrix Supergirl turned the corner and became a hero, I knew I wanted a sketch from him.

I was lucky enough to get on his list and get this unbelievably phenomenal Matrix sketch complete with the minor details I love of the angled belt and oversized pointy sleeves. I love the determined look in her eye, ready to jump into action.

Thrilled to have this in my collection!

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Leviathan Theory: Event Leviathan #3 Clues Review

I have a Leviathan Theory.

Okay, I have Leviathan Theories.

But the main Leviathan Theory is that Levithan is Ted Kord, the Blue Beetle. That somehow Ted can see the entirety of the DC Universe. All its history. All its Crises. And, in a Watchmen like effort, has recruited the other Charlton heroes to help him get control of this Earth.

And now, anchored onto the conclusion, I read Event Leviathan and try to massage the information given to fit that theory.

And trust me, Event Leviathan #3, while not giving us any physical clues, is filled with enough nuance and innuendo to make me think that this time I am right.

A lot of that has to do with the idea that Jason Todd has every motive to be Leviathan, to wring order out of the chaos of super-villainy and heroes with immutable morals. A lot of it has to do with words Leviathan says themselves.

So enough chitchat. Let's get to the clue review!

Let's start with the cover, which I think is an homage to Batman #618. While this was part of the Hush storyline, it showcases the dead Jason Todd. The death of Jason could be considered one of Batman's biggest failures. But moreover, his not avenging Jason was the impetus behind Todd becoming the Red Hood.

The Joker killed Jason. Batman arrested the Joker. The Joker has killed again and again. If Jason's desire for justice is driven by that, who else could we say could have such a compulsion.

Well, if you're Ted Kord and you can see everything that has happened everywhen then you know you were shot in the head when heroes like Batman didn't join you in your investigation in Countdown to Infinite Crisis.

And you also know that Wonder Woman, who did take that step, was vilified for it, driving a wedge between the Trinity.

Ted has a reason to want to bring order to the world. So something like this doesn't happen again.

Okay, onto the book itself.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Sales Review: July 2019 - edited

I have been reviewing sales on this site for many years and usual I discuss some minor fluctuations all while wondering where all the fans are.

I think this month I have, for the first time, been stunned.

The sales for July 2019 came out recently and the best place to review them, as always, is over on ICv2. Here is a link:

July was a 5 Wednesday month which meant overall comic sales were up from the prior July. No surprises there.

But looking at the actual numbers has me gobsmacked.

Supergirl #32 came out last month.

In it Kara and Jon team up to have a final showdown with Gandelo. Rogol Zaar shows up to join the party. This is a big part of the Unity Saga currently rolling through the Superman book, reuniting the Super-family.

While Marc Andreyko's run hasn't been a favorite, at least this issue was a crossover of a sort with the Bendis books. So how did it sell?

Friday, August 16, 2019

Review: Event Leviathan

Event Leviathan #3 came out this week, the ending of the first half of the book and a classic middle chapter for a mystery like this.

The bulk of the story is a loud, well paced, gorgeous fight scene between the team of detectives and the Red Hood. And, much like in an action movie, there is nothing like a good action sequence in the middle of a story to keep the adrenaline pumping and the crowd engaged. I still find it a little strange that Jason was able to defeat all these heroes. But I am not the biggest Red Hood fan so maybe that all seems in line.

But the foundation of this mini-series is the mystery of 'who is Leviathan' and there are clues here if you look hard enough. I doubt that writer Brian Michael Bendis is going to be obvious. The heroes aren't going to find an item, a footprint, a weapon to move things along. These are subtle clues. As such they are mutable, and easily malleable to fit into my #LeviathanTheory.

Alex Maleev's art is stunning as usual with a strong color palette to reflect the tone of the scenes. I have been a fan of his for a long time so seeing his version of Superman or Plastic Man is a treat.

But remember, this is a review post. The review of the clues will be sometime next week.

 I thought last month's cover was an homage.

I think this month's is as well.

Squint and you can see the similarities between Event Leviathan #3 and Batman #618. As both involve the Red Hood (in the Hush cover case, Robin's dead body), and given Jason's talk in this issue, it seems appropriate. It also leans into my theory a little bit. But more on that later.

On to the review!

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Boston Fan Expo - Last Prep Post

People laugh when I call summer my 'Convention Season'.

But it seems so appropriate.

And nothing makes that more evident than the fact that with Terrificon still in my rear view mirror, I am prepping for Boston Fan Expo this upcoming weekend.

Fan Expo is more of a pop culture convention and less of a pure comic con. The draw here is as much for celebrities and voice actors.That said, there are certainly a number of big comic guests at this con each year and this year is no different.

What is interesting is that the biggest names (Todd McFarlane and Marc Silvestri) are creators pretty much missing from my collection. I have some early DC McFarlane stuff, and a handful of Silvestri New X-Men issues. But none of them are 'important' enough for me to consider standing in those lines and paying big bucks for premium packages.

And, also interesting, this is the first con where I think I am not looking to get a commission. I'll bring a sketch book and see if anything falls into my lap. But otherwise, I think I am there just to meet and get some signatures.

Most importantly though, the best thing about this con is that I am meeting so many friends I have made in social media. The Fire and Water crew (Shag, Rob, and Ryan), Diabolu Frank, Tim Price, WardhillTerry, Keith G. Baker and others are all going to be there. I can't wait to hang out with this wonderful community I feel blessed to be part of.

 As for guests I am excited to see, read on.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Leviathan (Back Up) Theory - The Atom

We are two months into Event Leviathan and I have my Leviathan Theory in the bank. Leviathan is Ted Kord, aided by the other Charlton heroes.

Like any good mystery, there isn't just one suspect. Anyone can still be Leviathan under that mask. And I have been poring over these clues so much that other theories were bound to bubble to the surface. Hawk and Dove? New 52 Superman? Adam Strange? A case (maybe not particularly strong ones) can be made for any of these characters. I know ... I have done so.

Let me throw another onto the pile.

Leviathan is Ray Palmer. And 'we' means just that. He has a partner.

What do we know about Leviathan right now that are facts. He wants to bring about world order. He doesn't want to fight super-heroes; he wants them to join. He has very advanced tech. He knows the heroes very well, maybe having worked beside them. And he seems to come from a tragic past.

Mix those facts in with some things implied in issues and I have a decent back up theory that the Atom is Leviathan.

In fact, even the names are a hint. The Atom is something small. Leviathan, by definition, means something big. That word play alone might be a hint.

But you aren't here for semantics.

You are here for a breakdown of clues. So let's get to it.

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Supergirl 1970’s Slurpee Cup

One of the pieces that has eluded me over time had been the Supergirl 7-11 Slurpee cup from the 1970s.

Now I know that things like this are available on line, via EBay, etc.

But there is something about finding things in the wild that makes the hunt so much more delicious.

So imagine my surprise when last week I walked into my comic store and saw they had acquired a massive Slurpee cup collection. And front and center in the the display was the Supergirl cup.

And yes ... it is now mine.

This was definitely the style guide, corner of the cover, stock art pose for the Supergirl of the time. I am not a big fan of the ballet slippers. But this will work!

And, while not in the best condition, it is basically intact. So I'll take it!