Monthly archives: May, 2009

Podcast of Doom (transcript):
Battle for the Cowl concludes

[SFX: Intro music]

JIM DOOM: Hello and welcome to this week’s Podcast of Doom. This week saw the release of two significant second-generation hero books, Captain America #50 and Battle for the Cowl #3 of 3. I’m joined by my co-host, Doom DeLuise, to discuss the second of those two books. How’s it going, Doom?

DOOM DeLUISE: Always a pleasure!

[SFX: music fade out]

JIM DOOM: I sat down and read Battle for the Cowl #3 at lunch the other day, and when I turned the last page and finished it, I thought to myself “That is one of the worst stories I have ever paid money for.” I’m going to give you an impromptu list of what was so bad about it.

DOOM DeLUISE: Everything?

Is Jason Aaron full of crap? (Maybe)

Comics writer Van Jensen (full disclosure: also the blogger formerly known as Jean-Claude Van Doom) commented in February about the apparent similarities between a pitch he submitted to Marvel and what was then a newly solicited Wolverine story by Jason Aaron. At his blog, Van described his “day in the life” story as “a comedic, slightly meta take” on Wolverine and his ability to be in so many places at once. The story follows Wolverine through a single day as he scrambles from place to place, bouncing through various fights to take part in all the different books he’s a part of — Wolverine, Origins, Astonishing X-Men, X-Men, New Avengers, etc.

The joke is that Wolverine is regarded as a loner, but that perception exists because he’s so in demand that he doesn’t have time to make friends while he’s running from one tussle to another.

Things got interesting when “A Day in the Life” (which was the title in the February solicitations) writer Jason Aaron found Van’s blog and quickly refuted the implications that the plot had been passed to him through Marvel, adding “‘Day in the Life’ types of stories are obviously nothing new, and mine is not tongue in cheek or slightly-meta, so I imagine you’ll find our stories aren’t even as similar as you’re supposing.”

That seemed to settle everything. But I happened to pick up Wolverine #73 this week, the first issue in this two-part story, and I was shocked to the point of laughter at how strikingly similar this story is to what Van pitched. (more…)

Book of Doom Preview: The Unwritten #1

We dropped the ball on last week, folks, so hopefully, your hearts went on without the Book of Doom. But we’re back! This week’s pick is The Unwritten #1, courtesy of Mike Carey, who was nice enough to do an interview with me about the book a bit back.

So the rundown?

Everyone’s read the Tommy Taylor books, the popular series of novels turned pop culture phenomenon about a boy wizard’s adventures. And everyone knows about Tom Taylor, the boy the novels were based on, whose life was so overshadowed by his Dad’s fictional epic that Tom’s become a lame Z-level celebrity at best and a human viral marketing tool at worst.

But what if the resemblance goes even deeper? What if Tom is the boy-wizard of the books made flesh? And if that sounds crazy, why is it bringing him into the crosshairs of an ancient faction that has never been named in any book or text?

To discover the truth about himself, Tom must search through all the places in history where fiction and reality have intersected. And in the process, he’ll learn more about that unwritten cabal and the plot they’re at the center of –– a plot that spans all of literature from the first clay tablets to the gothic castles where Frankenstein was conceived to the self-adjusting stories of the internet.

Can’t argue with that, right? To participate, email me at

Firestorm Confirmed as Black Lantern

firestorm black lanternClick the image for a larger version.

So that brings the total of confirmed Black Lanterns up to five. With the reveal of Black Hand as the leader of the group, along with promo images showing both Earth-2 Superman and Aquaman, and now throwing Firestorm and Martian Manhunter into the mix, this team is starting to look pretty sick.

My only question is, will it be as exciting to read the story if we already know who all of the bad guys are going to be before the story even begins? I remember one of the coolest moments, for me, during the Sinestro Corps War was at the end of the one-shot special issue that kicked the whole thing off, we were shown a giant reveal of the heavy hitting players who were given yellow rings.

I’m just hoping that all of these promo images don’t soften the impact once they’re finally revealed in the pages of Green Lantern.

I think another one of the cool things that we’re seeing with the Black Lanterns that we saw with the Sinestro Corps is that they’re taking established characters and throwing them into the team, and it just adds that much more drama and excitement, knowing all the members. It makes me wonder if we’ll see any familiar faces take hold of a red or blue ring. Or any of the colors, really. That could be fun.

Source: Newsarama.

Doom and Doomer:
X-Men Origins: Wolverine

DOOM DeLUISE: So Wolverine came out on Friday, and I think it’s safe to say that most people had some serious reservations about it, considering all the negative reviews the bootleg had received. Now that you’ve had a few days to think about it, what’s your general reaction to the movie?

JIM DOOM: Well I think it’s worth stating that I had extremely low expectations for this, based on X-Men 3, the previews I’d seen, the reviews that I’d read and my attitude toward Wolverine’s origin. I thought X-Men 3 was terrible; the previews made this look like it was basically going to just be another X-Men superhero team movie when it’s supposed to be about Wolverine’s origin – which I’d consider more “black ops” oriented; the reviews I’d read criticized what they saw as excessive attempts to inject humor in the movie, which I hate; and I always thought one of the best things about Wolverine was the mystery surrounding his past.

So I was pleased based on these factors — I thought it was a lot better than X-Men 3, and I’d actually put it somewhere between X2, which I thought was great, and X-Men 1, which I thought was just good enough for what it needed to be as the first big superhero movie. It also was based on more of the black ops stuff than I feared it would be, even though they took a lot of liberties with the stuff I liked from the comics. I also wasn’t bothered at all by any of the attempts at humor — at least none that I can think of off the top of my head — and I laughed several times, even when I was supposed to.

I think overall, I just came away with a feeling of relief. It wasn’t the Wolverine movie I would’ve made, but it wasn’t nearly as bad as I feared. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it.

I realize I covered a lot of bases there, so I hopefully I didn’t get ahead of where you wanted to be.

DOOM DeLUISE: No, that’s fine. My expectations were about the same as yours, from what it sounds like. I debated whether or not to even go see this or just wait for the DVD. Overall, when I first left the theatre, I was not pleased with the final product. I thought there were several parts where I laughed when it was supposed to be a serious scene, like when Wolverine wakes up screaming from a bad dream, or when Silverfox tells the story of the moon and the trickster and the wolverine. That was just hard to sit through. But those are just a few examples.

Book of Doom: Blackest Night #0

One of my earliest thoughts when reading this story, most of which is a conversation between Hal Jordan and Barry Allen near Batman’s grave, was “I can’t believe this was written by the same guy who wrote Flash: Rebirth #1. I actually – no lie – flipped back to the cover to double-check that this was Geoff Johns, but more because Flash: Rebirth #1 was so bad and this felt so much like Johns at his best. He packs so much power into so few words when he needs to, like “It’s not my fault hiding in the shadows is your only ‘super power'” and “…If there’s an escape [from death], you can bet Batman’s already planning it.” Then there was that fantastic bit of dialogue in which Hal reveals the new Robin to Barry:

HAL: “…And Robin’s insisting that Bruce isn’t really gone.”
BARRY: “He’s holding onto hope. That’s what Dick always gave Batman.”
HAL: “I meant Tim Drake, Barry. You haven’t met him yet. He’s the current Robin.”
BARRY: “Right. Tim Drake. I like him already.”

I mean how sweet is that? Barry learns a little about the new Robin, but the readers learn a ton about Barry, and count me among the readers who needed to learn about Barry, particularly after not liking him much post-Flash: Rebirth #1. But what is so cool about this is that these two guys who have returned from the dead are having the luxury of reminiscing on their deaths as part of a conversation, all the while the threat of the Black Lanterns is looming overhead.

Worst to First: April 29th, 2009

Howdy, how do, sports fans? I haven’t been buying as many comics lately (‘conomy ate mah job and I ain’t got money ta spend), but I picked up a decent number of comics this week, so I figured I’d write something about them. Unfortunately, this format doesn’t really work for me anymore, since I’ve only been buying comics that I know I’ll like. So the “worst” comic of the week is still pretty darn good. That said, let’s get down to brass tacks.

justice society of america 26Worst: Justice Society of America #26

What a weird cover. Since when did Doctor Fate join the JSA? And who’s that guy with the handlebar ‘stache?

Oh well. In this issue, we get a farewell from the current creative team, as Geoff Johns is leaving next issue (I’m going to join him!). It’s a decent story about Stargirl’s surprise (belated) birthday party after the whole mess with Black Adam. It’s a nice little denouement, enhanced by the way Johns draws out all the differences in each character while showing how such a diverse cast of characters can come together as a team.

It’s complete fluff, but I enjoyed it, nonetheless. One thing I won’t miss about this series, though, is how Starman is so eccentric and quirky. That shit’s been annoying since Day Damn One, Vivian.

I don’t have a whole lot to say about this issue, because nothing really happens. Farewell, JSA. Thanks for the memories.

Get to the Fireworks Factory, Already: Green Lantern #40 (more…)