Podcast - Episode 151: Avengers West Coast: VisionQuest

Vision Quest Banner.jpg

We are joined this week by our friend Sean Jordan, aka Wordburglar, and also Alex Kennedy, who we unfortunately did not have a microphone for. We had a good time talking about issue #4 of The Last Paper Route, the comic that is made by Sean, Alex and Dave. We also talked about DCAF, which happened this past weekend, Sean's new album, Rhyme Your Business, Ghost Rider (the 2007 movie), and, of course, our book club selection, VisionQuest, by the lovable John Byrne.

Here is the photographic evidence that Dave did indeed pay Sean $5 to settle their bet that Dave would never watch Ghost Rider.


Well, that's over.

On to VisionQuest!

Here is that panel of Captain America excitedly running out the door when he heard the ADVENTURE ALARM!


And here's Scarlet Witch with a hairpin in her mouth, which I am obsessed with:


If you want to read a preview of my upcoming romance novel, Game Changer, you can do so on the Carina Press site. Also, if you want to follow my author Twitter account, it's @akaRachelReid

Next week we will be talking about The Untold Legend of The Batman! Don't miss it!

Last Week's Haul!

Well screw it. If Johnathan is going to post reviews this late then so am I. Memorial Day in the States screwed up our comic buying schedule, and I didn't end up picking up my comics until Saturday either. And for the past couple of days I have been doing a whole "should I...shouldn't I..." inner struggle about whether or not there is any point in posting reviews this late. But Johnathan did it, so I will too. Because I actually have a lot to say about last week's comics.

Batman in Barcelona (one-shot)

These days I tend to pick up any Batman comic that is independent of the Battle for the Cowl. Or basically any Batman comic that has Batman in it doing Batman stuff. This comic was basically created for the Barcelona comic convention which ran over the past weekend. It was pretty flat, I gotta say. It will probably be fun for the comic fans in Barcelona, but it sort of had that Spider-Man goes to CANADA! feel, y'know? Not that I don't collect and love any piece of American pop culture that I can get my hands on that involves a trip to Canada. So what I am saying is that although I have already forgotten what this comic was about, I am sure that the fans in Barcelona are at least a little thrilled to see Bruce Wayne partaking in Festival of St George celebrations (or, at least, acknowledging them).

Superman #688

Oh, Mon-El. So tragic. In this issue Mon-El finds out why his powers have been unreliable of late, and the news ain't good. He's dying. His stupid body is killing itself. But for now at least he is attractive and talking with a vague accent that passes for British. He also kinda wants to live, especially after a fairly (and maybe I read this wrong?) romantic encounter with a young man who runs an Italian restaurant downstairs from Mon's apartment. The man gives Mon a panini and encourages him to check out some café in Paris (which is undoubtedly writer James Robinson's favourite Paris café). It definitely felt like he was hitting on Mon, and that Mon was into it. Maybe it was the beautiful Renato Guedes art that was making everything seem so romantic. Anyway, after going to the café and drinking some espresso, Mon decides that not dying would be nice. To be continued!

Wonder Woman #32

Wonder Woman says enough is enough and beats the holy hell out of Genocide for this entire issue. It's awesome. She also admits that she never loved Tom, she just wanted to attractive children with him (children who would have been at least a little douchey, if you ask me). It's a tough day for Tom. There's only one issue left of this awesome storyline!

The Last Days of Animal Man #1

This six-issue series is set maybe ten years into the future, where an aging Buddy Baker is dealing with the fact that his powers are fading. Gerry Conway is writing it, and he knows a thing or two about writing comics. I really enjoyed this. Fans like me have been whining for years about DC and Vertigo having some sorta problem that didn't allow Vertigo heroes to return to the DCU. Over the past couple of years we have seen Animal Man slowly work his way back into the main DC line-up, and while I doubt we'll see him in the JLA anytime soon, he works really well in off-beat stories like this one. I think this series will be pretty fun.

Spider-Man: The Short Halloween (one-shot)

An oddly-timed but charming little Spider-Man comic written by SNL's Seth Myers and Bill Hader, and drawn by Kevin Maguire! It's a wacky story of mistaken identity when the real Spider-Man gets confused for a drunk dude in a Spider-Man halloween costume. Hilarity ensues. The comic does have pretty sharp comedy writing, and Maguire, the master of physical comedy in comic books, makes it funnier with his art. Plus it's a great stand-alone Spider-Man comic for those fools who aren't reading Amazing Spider-Man.

Ghost Rider #35

Whoever had the idea of making Tony Moore the artist on this book deserves a massive high five. What a great pairing! Like all Jason Aaron issues of Ghost Rider, this issue was gross, awesome and awesome.

Green Lantern #41

Looks like Hal Jordan's Guitar Hero playing days are over!

Bayou vol 1

The first book to be released under DC's Zuda label, Bayou vol 1 collects the acclaimed and beautiful webcomic. For those of you who weren't paying attention to Zuda, it's something DC set up a couple of years ago where creators could post the first few pages of a webcomic for people to read and rate. It has an American Idol-style competition element where the winner of each competition will become an ongoing webcomic on the Zuda site (complete with a contract). Unlike Idol, however, Zuda has actually brought recognition to people who deserve it. Bayou, by Jeremy Love, is the first of the winners to be collected into an actual physical book.

It's a very touching story about racism set in Depression-era Mississippi. The fantasy and folklore elements, and young girl protagonist, make it appropriate for young readers as well. I was hoping the paper quality of the book would be higher, but that's my only complaint. It's a lovely book.

This Week's Haul: Wolverine Does Not Appear in This Post

Supergirl #40

I don't know why people think I am trying to fool them when I say that this series is awesome and all superhero comic fans should be reading it. Supergirl is such a well-constructed, likable heroine and this latest storyline has been exciting and fun to read. Plus, Jamal Igle draws Supergirl with realistic proportions, strong stances, and great facial expressions. Even if it didn't tie into the New Krypton event, this series would be worth picking up on its own.



Daredevil #118

I went for the Wolverine art variant because it's pretty cute.

Foggy rips into Daredevil in this issue for being a selfish, insane idiot for the past...oh, thousand issues or so. It's really, really satisfying.

I'm really loving this Kingpin storyline because it allows us to focus on someone else's misery for a change.


Detective Comics #853

 So what did you guys think of this? I thought it was pretty neat but...man, what I would give for some straight-up Batman.

I think Neil Gaiman did a good job of what he was trying to do here. I don't think it holds a candle to Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?, because it is less crazy action and more crazy talking about crazy things. But the art is good and it's got a lot of fun references to things that Bat-nerds and Bat-amateurs will enjoy. It will make a hot-selling trade, I think. I mean, you put Gaiman's name on the cover and that'll sell a lot of copies right there.

Ghost Rider #34


 Well this was hands-down the best trucker horror comic I have ever read. Or at least the best one this year.

Tony Moore is just the perfect artist for this series. Can you imagine a funner comic to work on than this one? I can't. Redneck horror is just not a genre that is used enough in any medium.

Mighty Avengers #24

 I am sure that I have mentioned this before, but I'll say it again: I love that Marvel has the recaps on page one of all their comics. It really helps people like me get into series like this one. I hadn't been following Secret Invasion or its aftermath too closely, and I had never read Mighty Avengers before. But I do know that I love two things: Dan Slott and Hercules. I have been enjoying this series so far quite a bit, despite being a little confused (female Loki? What the hell?). I still feel like I would fail a Marvel exam if I had to take one.


The Amazing Spider-Man #592


 So last week's issue of Spider-Man had a crazy and amusing last page shocker...and this issue has an even crazier and even more amusing last page shocker!

So despite the malnourished Spider-Man on the cover, the interior of this comic (with art by Mike McKone!) was super. J. Jonah Jameson fans rejoice!


Tales Designed to Thrizzle #5


Fortunately for those of you who haven't yet picked up an issue of Michael Kupperman's hilarious Tales Designed to Thrizzle series, it's being collected into a book that will be out in July.

For those of you who have been Thrizzled before, you'll be happy to hear that there is extended Twain & Einstein content in this issue.


I also read Batman: The Brave and the Bold #4 (did somebody say SUGAR AND SPIKE CAMEO?!).

This Week's Haul: Namor!

Hey everyone!

I got a whole lot of comics this week. Really, too many comics. But my computer is fixed and Photoshop is reinstalled, so I am able to share my thoughts with you once again. Here we go with a small selection of what I read this week.

Uncanny X-Men Annual #2

Namor fans rejoice!

I have been buying Uncanny X-Men every month for the better part of a year now. I have really enjoyed Matt Fraction's writing on the title, and have tried to overlook the artwork in the Greg Land issues.

This issue tells the sexy history between Emma Frost and Namor. And it's frigging beautiful! Both Daniel Acuna and Mitch Breitweiser provide stunning artwork, but you don't have to take my word for it!

Oh Namor. I missed you so.

Superman/Batman Annual #3

Blowing? Tandem? It must be Superman/Batman!

Len Wein steps in to write this year's S/B Annual (typically the only issue of S/B ever worth reading). It's a re-telling of the Composite Superman/Batman story and it is really entertaining. It kind of emphasizes my point that Superman/Batman should be a series of one-shots by a different creative team every month. Even if it was just re-telling of Silver Age stories, it would still be a much better comic than it is right now.

Getting back to this issue: great art, great banter, a couple of unfortunate and somewhat confusing colouring errors, but those are easy to overlook.

Especially when Superman is looking so cute leaning on a wall!


And Batman asks a tough question:

Um, well...now that you mention it...

Dr Doom and the Masters of Evil #1

Hey! A new all-ages comic by Paul Tobin! Sign me up!

I love stories from the villains' point of view, especially funny ones where they are paling around. This book has plenty of that.




Mysterio asking to borrow a car so he can get his computer fixed really cracks me up.

This is going to be yet another really great Marvel all-ages title, as far as I can tell. But, like many all-ages books, it will mostly be enjoyed by aged comic nerds.

Ghost Rider #31

Yet another totally awesome issue of Ghost Rider by Jason Aaron. Much like Captain America, Daredevil, or Jonah Hex, it's so good every month that I really don't have anything interesting to say about it.

Except...HOT Ghost Rider on Ghost Rider Action!!!!

Green Lantern #37

The Red Lanterns have really been grossing me out, I'm not going to lie, so I wasn't too excited about this issue. But it was actually pretty awesome. For one thing, Ivan Reis really threw down some great art. And the Hal Jordan-Sinestro rivalry was entertaining as usual.





Mysterius: The Unfathomable #1

Jeff Parker has a new series! And it's for...Wildstorm?!

Well, I don't usually have much reason to buy Wildstorm comics, but this is a good one. A really good one, as far as I can tell.

A mystic and a plucky young journalist-turned-assistant. That's a solid combination. Parker is one of my favourite writers, so it wasn't a tough decision to pick this up. And the art, by Tom Fowler, is really beautiful.

New original series are exciting!

This Week's Haul: So very sick

Welcome to Living Between Wednesdays...where we like our coffee black and our comic reviews late. I have been awful sick lately, but fortunately there were a lot of good comics to read. I have been very slowly writing these mini-reviews over the past few days, taking frequent nap breaks.

Super Friends #9
J.Bone not only did the cover for this issue, he did the interiors! Yay! It's Superman's birthday and everything is adorable, from Lex Luthor being cranky about not being invited to the party, to Batman explaining pinatas to the readers.

Amazing Spider-Man #578
Mark Waid teams up with Marcos Martin to bring us one of the most delightful comics I have ever read. This was seriously great stuff, the latest in a long series of great Spider-Man comics.

Terra #2
If you like hot naked ladies, then you will probably enjoy this. And even if you are more into well-written, nicely-drawn ladies, like I am, then you will also enjoy this.

Uncanny X-Men #504
And speaking of hot ladies, Terry and Rachel Dodson provide the art for this month's issue of Uncanny, and that made me very happy. Especially since this issue gives us a tour of Cyclops' horny psychosis, which is full of beautiful women made even more beautiful by Team Dodson's art. I'm glad I am reading X-Men comics again. It makes me feel like I'm 15.

Superman/Supergirl: Maelstrom #2
I just wanted to remind everyone that this series is great and the art is beautiful. Look at that cover! She's tying her hair up! Just like girls do when they are exercising!

Supergirl #35
I am loving this New Krypton cross-over story so far. Not only because there are so many talented people working on it, but because it is non-stop and has been coming out on time. Every week we get a new piece of the story via Superman, Action Comics, Supergirl, or a number of fantastic one-shot specials. It's fluid, it's interesting, and it's fun. And Sterling Gates is doing a great job writing Supergirl.

The Age of the Sentry #3
I can't even tell you how much I am loving this series. And a good thing is made even better this month because there is a very long back-up story drawn by Colleen Coover! And it features Milly the Model! Seriously, Jeff Parker. You are killing me.

Ghost Rider #29
My love of Jason Aaron's run on Ghost Rider runs deep. This issue gave us what he has been building to since he started: a big ol' battle between Johnny Blaze and Danny Ketch! Sweet Ghost Rider on Ghost Rider action!

Ambush Bug #4
It's a good time to be an Ambush Bug fan. Not only has this series been a lot of fun (and badly needed because there is so much DC craziness to make fun of right now), but it looks like we're finally going to get the long-rumoured Showcase Presents Ambush Bug collection in February! Yay!

This Week's Haul: Vote Against DC Decisions

Man, I read so many comics this week. Here are some of them:

DC Universe Decisions #1 (OF FOUR??!!)

I'll just say this, because this could turn into a whole long thing if I get started: it's been done before and it's been done better.

All-Star Superman #12

Well...what can be said? This comic was perfect. The whole damn series was perfect and life has no meaning or purpose now that it's over.

Action Comics #869

Woah, except...holy wow! I enjoyed this just as much as All-Star Superman! Geoff Johns and Gary Frank are just so fantastic together, and this Brainiac storyline has been so awesome. And the really amazing thing about this story is that it takes place within Superman continuity AND it incorporates Supergirl in a way that doesn't suck at all! In fact, it rules!

Ghost Rider #27

In the comic shop yesterday I commented to someone who was buying the new Ghost Rider that I've been really enjoying Jason Aaron's writing on it. The customer disagreed, and felt that the story had gotten too silly. I really don't know how to respond to things like that. What level of realism are you looking for in a comic about a flaming skeleton riding a motorcycle?

Billy Batson and the Magic of Shazam #2

This comic is just really, really great. This was a really good week for all-ages comics! Not only the ones I mention here, but also Tiny Titans and Marvel Adventures Avengers!

X-Men First Class #16

The last issue of this series, but not the end of X-Men First Class. In this issue we are promised an upcoming Giant Size special, and a new mini-series. I love X-Men First Class. I think it's a great idea for a comic, and I think it's really enjoyable every month. I'm sad to see it go as a monthly.

The Age of Sentry #1

At least Jeff Parker softens the blow of X-Men First Class ending by giving us an all-new awesome title in the same week! Parker shares the writing duties with Paul Tobin in a comic that gives us two delightful silver age-style stories that poke fun at some of the absurdities of the era without being a full-on parody. Nick Dragoda and Ramon Rosanos provide beautiful art. The colour throughout the book is just excellent. And check out that cover! It's an awesome comic. I can't wait for the next one.

Uncanny X-Men #502

Man I wish they would get someone else doing the art on this book. I really like this series but god damn...

The Spirit #21

Another perfectly good comic ruined by gratuitous T&A. Sometimes I wonder if these artists have ever actually seen women's clothing before.

The Amazing Spider-Man #572


This comic is actually making me want to read Thunderbolts. Almost.


In this comic our hero gets riddled with bullets from Bullseye. Then Bullseye gets riddled with bullets! Oh the bitter taste of your own medicine.

Greatest Hits #1

A new series from Vertigo started up this week. The premise is a British superhero foresome operating in the 60s, whose fame and career closely resembles that of British rock bands at the time. It's a fun idea, and it's a fun first issue.