Tuesday, May 24, 2016

THOUGHTS ON DC REBIRTH...BEFORE THE BOOK HITS THE STANDS

DC Comics and I have had a rather complicated relationship over the past few years.  

...

You know, I just typed that sentence and now I immediately regret it.  It makes it seem like DC Comics and I had a romantic thing going on and that just isn't the case.  DC is a comics publisher and I am a person.  It's not like we can date or get married.  So saying that our relationship is complicated implies that there was something romantic between us and that just isn't possible.

The better thing to write would be that I have had complicated feelings about DC Comics over the past ten or so years.  See, I started collecting comics back in 1987 but until the summer of 1994 I mainly stuck to the Superman titles.  I would pick up the odd book here and there and follow the Batman books or Flash (especially when the first television series hit in 1990) and I went through my obligatory X-Men phase in 1991, which lasted about a year, but for the most part I stuck with the Man of Steel.  That changed in the summer of 1994.  I had just graduated high school and Zero Hour: Crisis in Time led me down the path of buying a bunch of different titles.  I jumped feet first into the DC Universe and stayed there for well over a decade.  At one point I was buying all of the Superman books, Flash, Green Lantern, most of the Batman titles, Aquaman, Wonder Woman, JLA, JSA, Martian Manhunter and a handful of other random books.  

To be fair I would take day trips and weekend hikes into the Marvel Universe and even take a peek at what Image and other publishers were up to but at the end of the day I was a DC guy.

Things started to change at the beginning of the twenty-first century, which strikes me as another overly dramatic way of beginning of sentence but that doesn't make it any less accurate.  Around 2000/2001 the party seemed to be ending.  I wasn't connecting with the books like I used to and slowly I started culling titles from my pull list.  It was weird to suddenly feel like I was losing touch with the comics I was reading.  Looking back this was a very natural thing but I didn't have that perspective at the time.

My mood picked up around 2003, which was weird because DC was going through some significant changes both editorially and creatively at that time.  Titles I still loved like Young Justice and Supergirl were being cancelled, so on one hand it seemed like the end of an era.  On the other hand I rather enjoyed Geoff Johns' Teen Titans and Judd Winick's Outsiders.  Winick also began writing Green Arrow and Greg Rucka started his run on Wonder Woman.  Then the build-up to Infinite Crisis began in earnest and I was completely on board.  Suddenly I was buying all the titles again and while things were different I was enjoying myself and felt part of that world.

EPISODE 235 - X-MEN IN THE NINETIES PART ONE: MUTANT GENESIS



X-Men: Apocalypse comes out this Friday and since I have been on the ball this year when it comes to putting together episodes that tie into the comic book films that are released I have not one but two episodes all about Marvel's Merry Mutants coming out this week.  Not only that both of those episodes feature special guest hosts Jon M Wilson (The Giant Superman Podcast, New 52 Adventures of Superman and Avengers Inspirations) and J David Weter (Dave's Daredevil Podcast)!

In this first installment of the series I decided to call X-Men in the Nineties Jon, Dave and I talk about the first thirteen issues of the adjective-less X-Men series that launched in 1991.  That's right...it's been twenty-five years since this series came out which means that kids born that year are now allowed to rent a car here in the United States.  We spend about two hours talking about Magento's "final" stand, the introduction of Omega Red, the crossover with Ghost Rider, how much I hate Mojo as a character, why Jim Lee leaving the title made me mad and how awesome Art Thibert's art was in issues twelve and thirteen.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

EPISODE 234 - DINNER WITH ALAN



Back in March I was fortunate to have dinner with the one, the only Professor Alan Middleton.  You know Alan, right?  He's the host of the Quarter Bin Podcast and the co-host of Shortbox Showcase and Dorkness to Light as well as being supreme high commander...cultural attache...

You know I'm not really sure.  I know it has to do with Latveria and Doctor Doom.  Alan loves Doctor Doom.  I suppose we all should but Alan works for the guy.  

Hail Doom.

Despite working for a tin-plated despot supreme and loving leader of Latveria Alan is also one of the nicest guys you will ever meet and we had a lot of fun having dinner and then going to a comic shop and buying cheap books.  I recorded our dinner conversation and it's a mix of what we're currently reading and the economic realities of Disney buying Marvel and how small the comic industry really is and whether or not I should look into working for the Latverian Embassy in Atlanta.

Okay.  That last part is totally not true but if there was such a place I'd probably work there.  

I mean the benefits have to be pretty good.

I'd like to thank Alan for being on the show, for the comics he gave me and for buying dinner.   

There are a number of ways to comment on this or any other episode.  The email address is viewsfromthemailbox@gmail.com.  You can even leave a comment right here on the site.  The show has a page over on Facebook so be sure to give that a "like".  I'm also on Twitter through the handle @BaileysPodcasts.  Reviews are always appreciated over on iTunes and if RSS Feeds are your thing the one for Views is right here.  All feedback will be read on the show...eventually unless you want to keep it between the two of us which is fine by me.  

Next Time: Either a special Saturday edition of Views or the first part of a two part X-Men tie in episode.  

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

EPISODE 233 - COMICS COLLECTING IN THE '90s PART 2



STOP!  Before you listen to this episode head on over to Pop Culture Affadavit and download Episode 61 of that show for the first part of this conversation!  It's awesome and you should be listening to that show anyway.

This time out I am joined once again by Tom Panarese (he of the previously mentioned Pop Culture Affadavit blog and podcast as well as the fantastic In Country podcast) and we are going back to the '90s in this one to look at the late and somewhat lamented Wizard: The Guide to Comics.  Wizard was a big part of my comic book collecting in the '90s so I wanted to devote an episode to the magazine and Tom was game to join me on this trip down memory lane.  We kick things off with our Wizard origin stories as well as a brief history of the magazine.  After the break we go through Wizard #60 to give you an idea what a typical issue felt like.  Small tangents pop up from time to time and we take a few shots at the decade we love so much but mostly it's all about Wizard.

During the episode I mentioned an interview with Joe Quesada on Fatman on Batman, hosted by Kevin Smith.  That particular conversation took place on Episode 63 of the show, which you can find by clicking on this link and scrolling down.

Thanks again to Tom for coming on this episode.  This was a fun two parter and I can't wait to talk to him again.

Next Time: FINALLY...my dinner with Alan...and some other stuff.



Tuesday, May 3, 2016

EPISODE 232 - CAPTAIN AMERICA: MAN OUT OF TIME



This time out I wrap up my shameless attempt to gain new listeners and extra downloads by tying into an upcoming comic book movie with a conversation about the very awesome Captain America: Man Out of Time.  Joining me once again is my permanent semi-regular co-host Andrew Leyland (who hosts or co-hosts such shows as Hey Kids Comics, The Palace of Glittering Delights, The Fantasticast and Listen to the Prophets: A Deep Space Nine Podcast) and after spending eight minutes talking about the slate of DC Comics collected editions that are coming out in 2016 we talk about this seemingly little known Captain America story.  What was it like for Cap during the war?  How did he adapt to a future he knew nothing about?  What happens when he gets his fondest desire?  All of these questions are asked and answered either by Andy and me or by writer Mark Waid. 

(NOTE: Mark Waid is not actually on this episode.  He wrote the story limited series Andy and I talk about.  If Mark Waid would like to come on the show he is more than welcome but I assume he has better things to do.) 

We also talk about how Christian Kane (Eliot on the awesome show Leverage) NEEDS to be cast as Wolverine once Hugh Jackman steps down.  This is a moral imperative.  Kane was born to play Wolverine and if there is any justice this will happen.  Tweet the heck out of #ChristianKaneISWolverine.  We need to get a fire under Fox's collective asses.

Next Time: Tom Panarese stops by to talk about an artifact from the '90s!  Which artifact?  You'll find out next week.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

EPISODE 231 - CAPTAIN AMERICA: HEROES REBORN



This time out I am starting a four part series that will pop up randomly over the course of 2016 to celebrate the twenty year anniversary of Heroes Reborn.  For those of you not "in the know" Heroes Reborn was an initiative Marvel launched in 1996 to breathe new life into four of its flagging properties.  To accomplish this goal they brought in Rob Liefeld and Jim Lee and let them reboot the Fantastic Four, Iron Man, the Avengers and Captain America.  Leading off this series is Captain America for no other reason than to tie into the upcoming film Captain America: Civil War.  

Joining me is Jon M Wilson (co-host of the Giant Superman Podcast and host of the New 52 Adventures of Superman) and when I type "joining me" I meant that literally.  Jon spent the weekend at my house when Batman v Superman came out and we thought it would be fun to record this face to face instead of over the Internet.  After checking out the copy of Captain America: The 75th Anniversary Vibranium Edition that my wife got me for Valentine's Day Jon and I dive heard first into the Jeph Loeb/Rob Liefeld issues of Captain America and revel in the energy and craziness and wonky perspective that make up those six issues.  After the break we get into the James Robinson issues of the series and all the retroactive continuity and high octane action that make up those stories.  

Be sure to keep an ear out towards the end of the episode for an exciting announcement regarding future episodes of this show!

Next Time: Andy Leyland stops by to talk about Captain America: Man Out of Time!

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

EPISODE 230: MAN WITHOUT A COUNTRY



Before I get into the show notes I want to apologize to Alan Middleton.  This episode was supposed to be the conversation we had when he came to town a month or so back but because of my inability to read a calendar I had to bump that until May.

Sorry, Alan.  I'll make it up to you at some point.

You may have heard that there's this big time Captain America film coming out in a couple of weeks and while I didn't want to devote an entire month to episodes about Cap I did want to spend some time talking about the character.  So for the next three episodes Steve Rogers is taking center stage.

Because I am not above shamelessly trying to tie into something big in an attempt to gain new readers and entertain the ones I already have.  

Joining me for this first installment is award winning talk show host Scott Ryfun.  Scott hosts and co-hosts a variety of shows including Earning My Ears (with Scott Gardner), Dinner 4 Geeks (with Jeff, Ryan and Ron...just Ron), Growing Up Star Wars (with Scott Gardner and Chris Honeywell) and the always amazing My Star Wars Story.  He also likes Captain America, so I thought he'd be a good fit for what I wanted to do over the next three episodes.  Our subject (ostensibly) is the Mark Waid/Ron Garney fueled Man Without a Country storyline from their first run with the character.  What follows is a discussion on Waid's work with Captain America both before and after Heroes Reborn, the Man Without a Country story in specific and a good number of tangents.

Good lord in heaven are there some pretty epic tangents.

If you like tangents then this episode is for you.

Seriously...at one point this episode turns into two guys practically begging you to get the Marvel Unlimited App.

Anyway, Scott and I talk Cap and why some of his best stories involve him at odds with the American government, which ties thematically with the upcoming film.  We also discuss some misconceptions people have about Steve Rogers and why Man Without a Country is such a fun story that highlights everything great about the character.

Next Time: Jon Wilson returns to the show to discuss one of the most infamous eras of Captain America ever...Heroes Reborn.