Tuesday, April 30, 2013

The Five Failures of DC Comics

 Lately I've been diving back into the deep, murky waters of DC continuity... circa the early-to-mid-2000's. You know, Morrison's Batman, Johns' Justice Society, Teen Titans and Flash, the various Crisis', Meltzer's Green Arrow and, of course, 52. Much of what I've been reading is shockingly good. Even weighed against the superhero books that are on the shelves today. Much of it is, arguably, not terribly well drawn but then back in those heady days DC didn't exactly seem to be crowded with unique artistic voices.

In reading all of this old stuff though I've had to reevaluate how I see the New 52. DC's bold experiment was something that I stood behind from the beginning. Sometimes vehemently, as when I argued with fellow podcaster Austin Wilson (Hideous Energy) on Twitter so angrily that his co-host actually called my cell to make sure I wasn't genuinely furious. I wasn't and I ended up going on the show to further argue my point with them.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Brand New Feature: Jupiter's Legacy #1 (Image Comics)

by Mark Millar, Frank Quitely and Peter Doherty

Mark Millar is a man of big talk, big promises, and many times, big stories. Millar built himself up with a series of fantastic, finite arcs for Marvel Comics, before moving on to release some off-beat stories through Icon. Since then, the luster behind Millar has faded a bit. The hype machine is less effective, and the stories are not always fantastic. Still, pairing such a name with an artist like Frank Quitely, and buzz was sure to be a plenty for the new Jupiter's Legacy from Image Comics. Looking at the first chapter, this new series has more potential than delivery. 

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Episode 60: Daytripper

Episode 60 collides with your ear holes with the force of a thousand exploding suns! 

Or, y'know, we just talk about a bunch of comics and comics news.

Listen, I could give you the whole rundown on what the show consists of but where's the fun in that. Let's just say we talk news, then we team review Age of Ultron and then we have our hearts (and possibly minds) ripped out by Daytripper by Ba & Moon from Vertigo comics. 

Find us on the web at ancillarycharacters.com or youtube.com/ancillarycharacters. Send us your thoughts on things to letters@ancillarycharacters.com or @ancillarytweets on twitter or facebook.com/ancillarycharacters. 

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Check out this episode!

Friday, April 19, 2013

Brand New Feature: Bodie Troll #1 (Red 5 Comics)

by Jay Fosgitt

Think fairy tale inspired characters in a world that looks and feels very familiar to the colored version of Jeff Smith's Bone and you have a pretty good picture of the universe presented in the first issue of Bodie Troll from Red 5 Comics. Written, drawn and colored by Jay Fosgitt, this mini series follows a troll who is too cute to be any real threat despite the species he is and what he is meant to do. Bodie is adorable, a down and out type character who has a real child-like charm. Issue one is mostly focused on character and world more so than an ongoing story.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Episode 59: Webcomic Explosion

After weeks of set-up the Ancillary Characters return to talk comics and comics news... and Pizza Hut.

In the news section they discuss the newest Man of Steel trailer... and some other stuff.

Then they hop right into the thick of this weeks theme, webcomics.

Together they review Gunnerkrigg Court.

Allen reviews Manly Guys Doing Manly Things, Penny Arcade, Chainsawsuit, and Awkward Zombie.

Paul reviews Brawl in the Family, Buttersafe, and Homestuck.

Ethan reviews Marooned: A Space Opera in the Wrong Key, Steve Ogden and his Moon Town webcomic, PVP, 8-Bit Theater, Cleopatra in Space and Reds Planet.

Seth reviews Untold Tales of Bigfoot, Deep Dive Daredevils, Yeti 4 Hire, Super Cute, and Sheldoncomic.com.

Check us out live every Thursday live on youtube.com/ancillarycharacters.com or be sure to visit our site ancillarycharacters.com. Dont forget to leave us a rating and review on iTunes!

Check out this episode!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Brand New Feature: G. I. Joe: The Cobra Files #1 (IDW)

By Mike Costa, Antonio Fuso

There are many reasons why a book gets renumbered to feature a shiny “1” on the cover. Outside of the sales boost it will likely generate, a title may renumber to signify a new direction, a complete reboot, or simply to reflect a rebranding within the company. Similar to how many Marvel titles have kept previous continuity despite featuring that new numbering, Cobra Files is not really a fresh start.

Possibly signified by retaining the same creative team with the title, G.I. Joe: The Cobra Files is a continuation of Mike Costa’s previous Cobra story. For fans of that series, the title is a must buy and it delivers on what they have come to expect. For readers who are new to the Joe universe, jumping on with the Fred Van Lente led relaunch, this will be difficult to follow.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Episode 58: Age of Depression

More books are reviewed than you can shake a stick at in this one, boys and girls!
But before they get to the reviews Allen, Ethan, Paul and Seth talk news. There's a Hickman Fantastic Four omnibus coming! A new Arkham game! and some other stuff...
In the review section they hit titles like Green Lantern, Saucer Country, Knuckleheads, Age of Ultron, Rocketeer: Hollywood Horror, and much more.
Don't forget to find us on the web at ancillarycharacters.com and at facebook.com/ancillarycharacters. Also on twitter @ancillarytweets and... well, really we're all over the place. Google search us and we'll turn up. BE SURE to tune in LIVE on Thursdays at 7pm EST at http://youtube.com/ancillarycharacters.

Check out this episode!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Paul's Picks - Princeless Vol. 1 (by Action Lab Comics)

Welcome back to Paul's Picks! By way of a rapid introduction, This is the column where I (Paul) would typically review my favorite book from this week's releases. However, since I am currently living an hour from my nearest comic shop, I don't usually get to my books the week-of anymore. So instead of a weekly pick, I will be bringing all of the readers a glowing review of a recent title that should be read by all! Starting with...

Princeless, Book One: Save Yourself
- written by Jeremy Whitley with art and colors by M. Goodwin,
and letters by Jung-Ha Kim and Dave Dwonch.

The guys at AC delved into this title from the publisher Action Lab Comics for our All Ages Bonanza (specifically Part One, which can be found here online or here in iTunes). The story begins with a Disney-esque opening, with a queen telling a typical bedtime story to her young princess, Adrienne. This bedtime story is the age-old tale of the Princess, trapped in the top of the tallest tower, where only the bravest and strongest of princes can save her by slaying the dragon that holds her captive. As one might expect, this wasn't simply a bedtime story: it was an explanation for how Adrienne's life is going to be by decree of the king. But as the reader will quickly discover, the princess mold was broken with our protagonist. The first line that she delivers comes off of the tail of the fairytale, "That story was complete hogwash."

Monday, April 8, 2013

Skullkickers (or the Merits of Handsome Packaging)

Skullkickers was a book that had drifted on the fringes of my peripheral since it launched. It wasn't that I don't like fantasy books (I do) and it wasn't that I don't like a good action adventure yarn. In the end it came down to one too many books being on my pull list at once and me being forced to ignore stuff that otherwise I might have leaped, not just jumped, on board for.

Last month writer, Jim Zub retitled the book Uncanny Skullkickers, slapped a big old number "1" on there and proved not only that I'm a giant sucker but that there is something to be said for "relaunches". I hopped on, fell wildly in love with everything about the title and quickly caught up on the series through the Treasure Trove hardcover. 

Before I go any further a quick rundown of what the book is about: A dwarf and a big bald guy go around punching (or shooting or axing or cutting or chopping, etc.) stuff in the face for money. That's it. 

Friday, April 5, 2013

Brand New Feature: Polarity #1 (BOOM! Studios)

by Max Bemis and Jorge Coelho, Felipe Sobreiro, Steve Wands

Max Bemis is the frontman for genre band, Say Anything. Polarity is Bemis' first public foray into comics. This excursion is not new for the modern musician with Gerard Way of My Chemical Romance, Tom Morello and now even Corey Taylor all with works of their own. However, this does not make Polarity any less worthy or any less original. Instead, Polarity is a true work of creativity with autobiographical roots and a real strength for character.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Episode 57: We Love Comics and So Can You

We're back to talk comics! 

No theme this week as we talk comics news and review a handful of titles. Allen, Ethan and Seth are lacking one of the group but that's okay, they'll press on anyway.

In the news segment they talk Dark Horses' The Star Wars, Jeff Smith's upcoming projects and the new animated Flashpoint movie 

Meanwhile Allen reviews Captain America 5, Avening Spider-Man, and Fantastic Four AU.

Ethan reviewed Animal Man 18, Artful Daggers 2, G.I. Joe: Special Missions 2, and Princeless Vol 2#1

Seth reviewed East of West #1, Private Eye #1, and Thunderbolts 6-7.

Together they review Guardians of the Galaxy #1, Thanos Rising #1 and Age of Ultron #4.

Find us on the web at ancillarycharacters.com and send your letters to letters@ancillarycharacters.com

Check out this episode!