Saturday, October 31, 2009

Casting the Batwoman Movie

After my post on adaptations, I got to thinking about a Batwoman movie. So I posited a question on Twitter: Who would I cast as Kate Kane? I already knew who my Montoya would be. Then I started thinking about the other roles in the series, and I had a lot of fun just clicking around the internet looking for good fits, so I decided to turn it into an entire blog post, with pictures, pros, cons, and various geekery.


Hopefully. :)

Kate Kane/Batwoman - My friend Stewart suggested Amy Adams. At first I reacted "huh, Giselle?" and then I remembered her as Amelia Earhart in that movie about the museum with what's-his-face from Zoolander. I know Amy Adams can be adorable. I know she has red hair and very little skin pigmentation. But can she be Kate Kane? I think playing Kate Kane may be even harder than playing Batwoman. After all, with Batwoman you have the costume to get you into character. Once you put that symbol on your chest, I think it makes a huge difference (even with nipples, Clooney did better at Batman than Christian Bale does). But Kate is a non-stereotypical lesbian. She's neither completely butch nor completely femme, and Hollywood generally doesn't know what to do with that (that includes writers, directors, casting directors, and actors). And of course there's that whole spectrum of what it means to be butch and femme, blah blah blah.

I guess I wonder if Amy Adams can pull it off. I don't know. I maybe wouldn't mind seeing her try. She doesn't make any less sense than, say, Heath Ledger, and everyone thought he was a great Joker. Okay, she makes slightly less sense than Heath Ledger.

For a very different and competing opinion, I sort of like Christina Hendricks in the role. I know, I know the curvy Joan of Mad Men is ultra feminine, and Kate isn't, necessarily. But, well, Kate's drawn busty (like almost every other comic book heroine), and Christina Hendricks has done a good job at playing kick-ass, during her two episode stint as Saffron in Firefly. And, actually, Joan is sort of kick-ass herself, in that bound-by-the-sixties sort of way. (For any MM fan interested in a really interesting article about how Joan is a more interesting character than Peggy, read this.)

Here's the thing. I think Hendricks could pull of not only Batwoman (who has a tendency to be hyperfeminine and sexual) but also Kate Kane, whose femininity is a bit more restrained, but who is still a ballsy, alpha-type woman. And, again, the way Kate is drawn is actually very similar to Christina Hendrick's body type.

Yeah, I think I've found my Kate Kane.

Renee Montoya/The Question: Sarah Shahi. Hands down, no questions, absolutely Sarah Shahi. I know there are people that like Michelle Rodriguez for this role, but no.

This woman should play Renee:

Uh huh.

Now, there's more than just looks to back this one up. First, she's played a cop before. Dani Reese in Life, who was a hard-ass, wise-cracking, recovering-addict detective. Basically Renee Montoya. Second, she's played gay before. Carmen de la Pica Morales in The L Word, where she had weird toilet sex with Mia Kirshner. Once you act out weird toilet sex, playing a faceless, kick-ass lesbian PI who macks on Batwoman and gets involved in a Religion of Crime should be a cake walk.

Third, she's a brown belt in karate, which means she could at least be quasi-believable in some of the Question's martial arts-heavy fight scenes.

Fourth, she's Renee Montoya.

Case closed, appeals denied.

Maggie Sawyer - With the understanding that she's going to be somewhat important as the series develops, I figured "what the heck." I like Laura Harris from Dead Like Me and Women's Murder Club, but she definitely seems a bit young/soft for the job. Then again, if Amy Adams is Kate, well. We're skewing a bit younger than I think the characters actually are in the books anyway. So maybe she could work.

Stewart suggested Mariska Hargitay, and I can't say I disagree with him. Around seasons 3 and 4 of Special Victims Unit, she was perfect. But that was a lot of years ago, and I don't know if she could pull Maggie off right now.

So while Laura Harris might be too young, Mariska Hargitay might be too old. Not that I couldn't see having Maggie be a bit older than Kate. That could work, too. And since this is sort of a dream cast, I guess we could just take that Mariska Hargitay from back then and put her in. Hm.

I could go either way, really. I'd have to sit in on the audition and see who has the best chemistry with our lead, because Kate and Maggie already have some very nice chemistry in only a few panels of one issue of Detective Comics. I am, however, a Renee/Kate shipper, so I'm sticking fast with that. Still, definitely important that the actress be able to do well against our Batwoman, since Maggie's apparently going to be her version of Commissioner Gordon.

Edit: A reader, Nikki, has recommended Katee Sackhoff for the role of Maggie. DUH. Wow, great suggestion. She's a great balance of feminine and masculine, can kick ass, and can command a group of people. Also I wouldn't mind seeing her in a tux, either.

Alice - Mia Kirshner. I know I'm sort of double-dipping in the The L Word pot, but take a look:

Now imagine her white-blonde.


Mia Kirshner is a fantastic actress. If you're not familiar with her work, go rent more independent films (she also played Sarah in The Crow: City of Angels, so there's that comic link), and her character, Jenny, on The L Word was completely nuts by the last two seasons (check out this great compilation from S5 NSFW). She'd be perfect.

Colonel Kane - I'm going to go with JK Simmons on this. I just really like the guy and think he has great range (have you seen him in Oz or Law and Order: Special Victims Unit?). I think he could pull off a ex-military, sort-of-traumatized, loves-his-daughter-but-worries-about-her kind of dad. Kind of like a cross between the Juno dad and the SVU shrink. Totally. It's also occured to me that I don't know Colonel Kane's first name (besides "sir" or "dad"), so maybe I'm not particularly wed to the character just yet. Still, I think JK Simmons could pull it off, and be good in the roll. And I'm a fan of the guy.

Okay, there we go, my picks for the main roles of a Batwoman movie. I'd love to get input if you've got any. Or if there are any other roles out there you think I ought to cast (I've already cast Kate Spencer/Manhunter, and am daydreaming of a legal drama where she defends Wonder Woman and they smolder and spar together. Cough.) let me know that, too. This is a fun way to pass the time.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Friday Question/Friday Answer: Adaptations

Okay, here we go for real this time: an actual Question/Answer entry. I made this question up myself, with some input from Anika, but please feel free to ask me future questions because I'm just not creative enough to keep on doing it.

I've been wanting to talk a bit more about non-print media, so this seems like a good transition piece.

What is your favorite comic book adaptation?

Because it's hard for me to narrow it down, Anika recommended I list a few and end with a winner. It's nice to have smart friends!

By the way, I welcome discussion on this. These are all opinion, and I have some very interesting tastes that not everyone agrees with (Donner's Superman doesn't crack my top 10, for instance).

Honorable mentions: Supergirl (1984), Watchmen (2009), V for Vendetta (2005), Mutant X (2001), Batman (1988), Iron Man (2008), Flash (1990), Flash Gordon (1980), The Crow (1994), Tank Girl (1995).

5) X-Men: The Animated Series (1992). This show made comics cool for my whole group of friends and, more importantly, for people who would normally pick on my whole group of friends. I didn't know anyone in my age group who didn't watch this at some point. And because of this show we got all the other neat animated shows that followed in that decade, including DC's amazing, comic-inspiring animated universe. Not to mention that it followed so well with the comics, including the awesome Dark Phoenix storyline. This show made me love Scott Summers, which... is saying something.

Plus it had the one of the best TV theme songs ever.

4) The Adventures of Superman (1952). My dad used to record all the episodes that aired late at night and we'd watch them together. This was my first introduction to Superman, so it holds a special place in my heart. There's something about the fifties-era Superman that is so perfectly perfect that I can't help but love it. The great thing about Superman is that he really is just always like that. I know that makes some people have less of an ability to connect to him, but for me that makes him more universal. Superman is Superman. Even if he crash lands in Siberia and is raised by Communists (a perfect foil to this Cold War Era show, by the way) he will always have the same set of values and morals. He always wants what's best for his adopted planet, even if he doesn't always fit in with it, and there's something very childlike and innocent about that which, in my opinion, is perfectly showcased by this fifties-era version.

3) X-Men (2000). As much as I hate that it was a Marvel movie that did it, Bryan Singer's more-grounded-in-reality version of the X-Men is responsible for the current wave of superhero movies and current love of comics by Hollywood (and therefore the main stream consumer). But more importantly, it's a pretty damn good movie. It's well cast, with a few exceptions (why did no one think of Liev Schrieber back in 2000?), it's got an interesting story, and the effects are good. But most of what makes that movie great, because it does change some things I don't get (swapping in Rogue for Kitty, for example, when Anna Paquin could have played a perfectly good Kitty), is the fact that 95% of the roles were cast perfectly, including the three most important ones: Magneto, Xavier, and Wolverine. These people are the characters. Wow. The first time we saw Hugh Jackman (and let's be honest, how many of us had actually seen Hugh Jackman before?) leaning against that cage, smoking a cigar... sent shivers up my spine. That movie set the bar. Let comic fans make comic movies and you'll get a well-cast (mostly), well-written, well-shot movie. It's too bad that his Superman Returns wasn't as good.

2) Batman: The Animated Series (1992). Where to start. First off, another great title sequence that really pulled in the dark-deco-noir atmosphere of Gotham:

This show created a whole universe of its own, giving us both Harley Quinn and Renee Montoya, who made the transition (very successfully) into the comics. It developed an animated universe full of superheroes and led to its own sequel, Batman Beyond. It made Bruce interesting, it made its villains interesting (Mark Hamil is still the best Joker, period), and it was the first time I ever really looked forward to getting back to Gotham. This did for kids and adolescents what Burton's movie did for teenagers and adults.

And it was fun. It was good. I enjoyed pretty much every single episode, and I still think of it when I think of Batman. To me, this show is Batman. This is the Bruce Wayne I want wearing the cowl. This is the world of Gotham I want to see. Darker than Metropolis, but not as dark as the comic version of Gotham. It really can't rain all the time, guys.

1) Wonder Woman (1975). Ah, the height of the second wave of feminism and we finally got the most well-known female comic hero onto television. Please note that we still have yet to have a female comic lead for a movie, other than the much-lambasted (unfairly!) Supergirl from 1984 and the did-anyone-else-see-it Tank Girl (both in my top ten, btw). And that there have been precious few female-led comic shows since the 70s (Birds of Prey, which I enjoyed, Model by Day, which was awful but I enjoyed because of Famke Jansen but it was just a TV movie, so... and maybe the argument for Generation X, but that was more of an ensemble). Okay, there's one exception, but I'm saving that for my Grand Prize.

Anyway. Here we are 35 years later and the Black Widow has been relegated to Tony Stark's secretary, there will be no female Avengers in the forthcoming movie, and if they ever make a Wonder Woman movie... yeah, exactly.

But besides all of that, I loved this show because of Lynda Carter. Man. She's still Wonder Woman as far as I'm concerned. She made the character interesting, strong, smart, sassy, vulnerable... human. While still being Diana Prince of the Amazons. And she did all of this in an outfit no man would have been caught dead in until 300. This. Is. Themyscira.

Grand Prize: Lois & Clark (1993). Best. Lois. Ever. I remember the big to-do when they announced that it would be Lois' name up front. And now it seems so obvious. Teri Hatcher's Lois was absolutely perfect for the time, and as a 12 year old girl watching this show, there was nothing I wanted more than to grow up and be like Lois Lane (except maybe to grow up and marry Lois Lane, but that came a couple of years later). The leads and amazing chemistry, Dean Cain was a great Superman and Clark (in the more modern, less bumbling sense), and John Shea was a perfectly cast as the evil, strangely noble version of Lex Luthor.

Yeah, this show jumped the shark. But it took awhile. We got a lot of good episodes out of it. But more importantly, we got a pop-culture phenomenon. And us girls got someone to look up to that was just a regular woman, living in a super world with a superhero.

It was sharp, stylized, and witty. Teri Hatcher carried that show (not that Dean Cain wasn't great, and not that I don't give props to Margot Kidder, for being the best part of the modernization of Superman that started with Donner's movie). It was fun and exciting and bright and it got people talking about Superman again. And I loved every minute of it, even after the shark jumping.

So there we go. I cheated a little because I couldn't narrow it down.

What are your favorite adaptations?

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Wednesday Haul. Sigh. More Zombies. (But also Batwoman!)

Not that I'm on a strict timetable, but I meant to get this in yesterday and the day just sort of got the better of me. So here we go. Same idea as last week, bottom to top.

Necrosha (one shot) - Yeah, zombies. Yawn. I don't care if DC or Marvel came up with this first, DC got it out first, so Marvel is late to the game. The art in this issue is really nice. There are three separate set-up stories. The plot of the first one is okay, but mostly exposition from Selene (it seems) and... big reveals of zombies I just don't care about. I'm sure you're wondering why I bothered, considering my general disdain with Marvel's universe at the moment. Well, Necrosha is a big cross over with New Mutants, and NM is one of the two titles I regularly read from Marvel (though I may add a third). I know about Emma and the Hellions, so that was neat, but the rest... eh. Whatever. Good luck with the zombies, X-Force. I think the Cypher story was interesting but, again, I'm really only here for the New Mutants anyway. So naturally. And then, of course, they throw Destiny into the third one and I get all interested in X-Men Legacy just to find out WTF she said to Ruth, and who Ruth is (who's Ruth) and was she looking for Rogue?

Zombies are so complicated, man.

New Mutants #6 - The first Necrosha tie-in for New Mutants. Cypher's back and all evilish. Are zombies really evil? I mean, I realize that the Blackest Night and Necrosha zombies aren't really zombies. They certainly seem to have some choices in what they're doing. The Necrosha ones more than the BN ones even. I enjoy reading Cypher's thoughts, and I enjoy how he breaks down even body language and understands it. The scene with the Professor (he's walking?) and the newly graduated New Mutants is priceless. And thank heavens we don't have that terrible art style from last time. I enjoyed it enough this time, but I'm so tired of the dead coming back and punishing the living that I really can't get behind it 100% yet.

Blackest Night: Titans (3 of 3) - This resolution was much more satisfying than the resolution from the Superman tie in. I don't know why. The mystery of why Dove is a weapon against the zombies is interesting (I have theories), and it's cool to see Bart and Cassie step up and be part of the Titans now. For BN anyway. Also Bart had the best comedic line of the book (the fact that I could laugh in a zombie book is nice), and there was some real intensity with Gar and Dead!Terra and Donna and dead!Baby that not only rung true but was very powerful. I was pleasantly surprised by this. I've always pictured Donna as Debra Winger (I know, I know), but this sort of finally separated me from that image of her.

Now I want to know how they're going to bring Garth back from the dead, because... seriously. Once this is all over, I want some of these dead heroes back, guys.

Blackest Night (4 of 8) - "We need to run in, take charge and kick ass like we were born to. And Ray? Mera? We were born to." Damn. For the first time ever, I see why Barry Allen is such a big deal. So here we are, power levels 100% (finally), and Nekron rises and wants Barry Allen (and I'm going to assume Oliver Queen, Clark Kent, Bart Allen, and anyone else who's come back from the dead). There were some fine moments in this, but it's dead in the middle of the series, and I'm pretty sure January is a month off for BN (hey, maybe they can finish Rebirth) so I just feel frustrated and stuck. But these zombies still pack more of a punch to me than the Marvel ones, because these are characters I know and love rising and being tormented. Middle of the road.

Gotham City Sirens #5 - Wow, this title is like... full of super lesbian subtext. Jenna Duffy, The Carpenter? Hah! I love the way Paul Dini writes these characters, it's really fantastic. And a freakishly adorable reveal of the actual bad guy, Joker's old sidekick who doesn't like "Harley Come Lately" (seriously, gay subtext abounds). Great stuff. This is another one of those titles that I feel I should be annoyed at, but mostly just enjoy. The team of Harley, Ivy, and Selina is fantastic and I have a lot of fun with them.

World's Finest (1 of 4) - I like this idea of the young superheroes that stand in on a world without Superman or Batman (I'm assuming this is pre-Blackest Night?). Especially because I really like most of the young superheroes. And they started out with two of my favorites: Red Robin and Nightwing. I love Chris Kent. I love the idea of Chris Kent, I love how Chris Kent came to be, and I love what he's doing now. So I was happy with this.

It was just a small little story for the two of them, but it had a lot of good character development in it, which is nice to see in what is ostensibly a one-off for the characters. The contrast between Nightwing's blue and Red Robin's red is really pretty. Yes, I use technical words like pretty. I'm a professional, people.

Ms. Marvel #46 - This was my first issue of Ms. Marvel. Ever. And it's second on my list, so that's saying something. My interest in Ms. Marvel was piqued by Fantastic Fangirls' Anika, and when I saw the "Battle of the Marvels" cover, I knew I had to pick it up. I wasn't disappointed. Sure, I only had a slight idea of wtf was going on, but Carol/Catherine's voice and her character were so enjoyable that it didn't matter. The way she dealt with Moonstone was really... heroic. Like a woman who's made mistakes allowing someone else to reform, just like she is. I'm not sure if I'll continue on with the title. Maybe. But I know that I enjoyed this issue for what it was and what it did for a character that I've come to enjoy vicariously through a big fan.

Detective Comics #858 - The beginning of the next arc for Kate and the end of the first arc for Renee. And of course it had to be at the top. I go in not wanting to like this title (seriously, twins?) but then I can't help it. Between the great writing from Rucka and the amazing art from JHW3, I don't have a choice. Also, just keep drawing Maggie Sawyer in a tux. Seriously. Hot. I think they're setting her up as the Gordon to Kate's Batwoman, and that's fine by me. Except with more subtext and potential making out. Also fine by me (sometimes I'm easy).

One of the things that really stuck out to me (in a good way) was the difference between The Past and The Present. Artistically. The past had less detail, as if it really was just a memory that is fuzzy around the edges. I mean, I have no artistic talent whatsoever, but if I'm reincarnated as an artist, I'd like to be JHW4. His stuff is so amazing, and even though I still wish the Kanes could have some skin pigmentation (they used to have it! what happened?) that is seriously my only nitpick with the art. The part where Kate comes back into her HQ and sheds her gear before slumping in the chair... really great stuff. It's a two-page splash, so instead of scanning it poorly, I'll just say: go buy the issue and see it for yourself.

As for the story: again, I was okay with the reveal that Alice was Kate's sister, since that makes sense within the whole Alice in Wonderland archetype thing. The whole twin thing... less into that, but I suppose it makes the loss of Beth all the more painful to Kate, as they were able to literally be one another. Let's see where this goes, because I want to see why she becomes Batwoman in the first place (and... you know... Renee).

And then the end of Renee's story was fine. The solicits said "bittersweet," but it didn't seem that way to me. It seemed just fine. I continue to love Renee and enjoy Cully Hamner's art (I got his autograph!) and I'm excited for the next arc to start. I'd like to delve a little more into Renee's character rather than just have it be a mystery she solves, but as long as I get Renee kicking butt and being snarky, I'm unlikely to complain.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Prop X, Where X = 8

Okay, I'm doing a switcharound because clearly I'd rather write about this than do a Q/A. So the Q/A can be Friday.

Apparently, over in the Marvel universe, a place I dare not look (Dune reference!), Matt Fraction had the "foresight" (self-proclaimed) to plan this story out two years ago, way before anyone even cared about Prop 8.

What story?

WTF is Prop 8?

Right, so Prop 8 is the California proposition to amend the California constitution to ban same sex marriage.

And Prop X is the thinly-veiled Marvel Universe equivalent wherein mutants aren't allowed to breed.

Here is why Prop X would never happen, even in a mutant-hating world:
  • Breeding and marriage aren't the same thing. Believe it or not, the Constitution actually establishes a fundamental right to privacy where it concerns what to do with your own body in the matter of conception. That's from Roe v. Wade, which lots of people hate but which is still law. The deal is that a woman can decide when, how, and if to become pregnant and/or stay pregnant. Granted, that's a very wide reading of the law, but considering the actual case law about procreation is very different than the case law about marriage, I could make the argument that it doesn't matter. The deal is that the federal Constitution serves as the entry-level for rights. A state can give more rights than the federal Constitution, but not less. That means that because of this fundamental right to privacy extended over the conception and pregnancy of a woman, a state constitution, no matter how amended, can not take away that right.
  • Too many comparisons to Communist China are never good for any right wing movement. Sorry, guys.
  • Unless you forcefully sterilize mutants, you can't actually stop them from breeding. And while various governments of the real world, including the United States, have been responsible for forced sterilization in the past, it's pretty much considered a horrible thing by just about everyone these days. Except more governments that a right wing movement wouldn't want to be associated with, such as Iraq, Iran, Venezuela and, you guessed it, Nazi Germany.
  • The reason Prop 8 passed was because President Obama got a whole heap of church-going African American and Latino voters out to the California polls in November that would not have normally gone. This was part of his grassroots campaign that worked beautifully for him and terribly for the separation of Church and State. There is no equivalent reason in the Marvel Universe right now for there to be a high voter turnout for Prop X.
Now none of this stops that whole Humanity Now! movement from trying, I guess. And maybe it's some sort of way for the writers and the readers of Marvel to feel satisfaction over the failure of a right-wing, anti-rights group's failure. Or maybe they'll (inconceivably, and that words does mean what I think it means) succeed, and that's a way to get us all angry and Doing Something.

Though unless we live in California, there's really not much for us to do at this point.

Well, unless we're self-proclaimed Comic Fan Obama. He could always repeal DOMA. That'd help.

Wait, sorry, talking about Prop 8 again.

Which is the point, I guess.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Wednesday Haul! Lots of girls, a few zombies, and a woman.

So just like everyone else in the Comicverse (I blame Joss Whedon for everything being a 'verse now), here's the first of my official weekly haul responses.

Bad first, because I want to end on high notes.

Justice League #38. It wasn't really bad, it was just... there. I picked it up because of the new writing team, and because I like the idea of the Justice League, and I've got a soft spot in my heart for them, but... Vixen? Really? I didn't even know who half these people were (someone died in the first few pages, and he looked like a cross between Captain Falcon and Hawkman, and I'm sure I would have been upset if, you know, I knew him). At least Red Tornado was there. And then Zee showed up. And then it was all just a PRELUDE to Darkest Night: JLA. Ugh and blah. The art wasn't anything spectacular, so really this book felt like a waste of my money.

Supergirl #46 is apparently the conclusion of the Hunt for Reactron, but I really don't care so it doesn't really matter. I haven't read any of these Reactron tie-ins, even though I really should because I like Supergirl. Why do I buy them? I don't know. Maybe in some small way, I feel like my money will make a difference. Not that it did for Exiles. Jerks.

Azrael #1. Okay. The art is sort of weird-but-good and I sort of am interested enough in the story and the character (I never liked Azrael the first time around, but I like the idea of Azrael), so I'll stick it in the middle.

Blackest Night: Superman#3. Ah, the conclusion. Where Krypto and Kon both manage to kill some Black Lanterns and we get to... wait until the next issue of Blackest Night to see anything else. Sigh. I love the three main Supers (Man, Boy, and Girl) so I was happy to see Kon using his TTK and dealing with Clark issues and such, but... Kara's trapped on Krypton and... we have to wait for BN for any furtherance of plot. Sigh!

Streets of Gotham #5. This is something I picked up from the Manhunter co-feature. We've apparently moved on in the story, because now Huntress is the main character of the main feature. And even though Batman is on the cover, he's not in the story at all (woo). I like the Huntress. She's sort of cool. Like the Red Robin of the ladies. I dig it. And the weird homicidal priest guy is interesting. SoG is at its best when it's showcasing Gotham, and I think that this issue did that. And then there was the Manhunter, and I love her something fierce (more on that Friday) so all in all I was really happy with this issue, and it's reinterested me in the main feature. Also I really like the art of both the main feature and the co-feature. I've added Dustin Nguyen to my "favorite artists" list.

Power Girl #6. Man, do I hate myself for loving this title. But I do love it. There are breast jokes aplenty. There are more-than-half-naked women running around getting taken advantage of and then being brutally violent. And then... Terra is adorable. And Kara's awesome with her cat. And the bright colors and heavy lines really work (Amanda Conner is definitely on my list). And every issue is just fun. I'm glad this Space Girls Gone Wild (sigh) arc is over with, even if the ending seemed a bit too cut-and-dry for me. I'm sure those women and their "handler" will be back.

Ahem. Anyway, how adorable was the page of Terra and PG shopping for furniture? Super adorable! And on the rooftop? I mean, seriously. Seriously! Also, I'm really enjoying the movie parodies that are "real movies" in the comic world. Hilarity. Fat Guy and the Hot Chick. Too true! How does Power Girl manage to be both horribly offensive and totally spot on in its feminist/pop-culture critique all in the same issue? I don't know, but when it comes down to it, it's just fun. In a sea of waking-dead zombies killing everyone and torturing everyone else, it's nice to have a title that is just light and superheroy and enjoyable. So thanks, Gray, Palmiotti and Conner. You made Wednesday brighter!

And then my number one buy this week, which is completely unexpected because it's Marvel: Spider-Woman #2. Man. Man man man.

Erm, excuse me. Woman.

There is nothing I don't like about this book. From Jessica Drew's inner monologue to the noir-with-color style art which reflects the gritty darkness of the plot, to the fact that I don't really need to know any of the random junk happening in the Marvelverse (damn you, Whedon!) to follow along. This is a fantastic book. I'm actually tempted to spend some money on the motion comics just to see the different stuff in that format.

It's funny, because Spider-Man is probably my least favorite mainstream/well-known superhero ever. Ever. I just don't like him, never have, and probably never will. You'd think I would, because he's the geek-turned-superhero wise cracking guy that gets to fly around the city. Maybe it's the spider thing (I hate insects... and arachnids), but I like Blue Beetle just fine, so probably not. There's just something about the type of stories he has that I dislike.

But Spider-Woman is nothing like that, and is nothing like what I expected. After I read issue one I was surprised, and now to see it continue into issue two, I'm totally sold. I hope this creative team stays together for a long long time (Bendis said in an interview that he's got tons of stories to tell, and I totally agree with hi that Maleev is doing some might fine artwork), because this book is absolutely in my top three right now.

There we go. Wednesday done. Comment! (If you, cough, want. I like feedback! And discussion!)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Some more Olivia Wilde interlude.

So I was supposed to start doing a Monday Q/A thing this week, but didn't. Oops! I don't want to do the same day as the Fantastic Fangirls, so it'll have to wait until next week.

But before my weekly Haul Post, have some of my fangirlish glee that 1) Olivia Wilde loved Wonder Woman, 2) Olivia Wilde wanted to be Wonder Girl, 3) Olivia Wilde said "Tron" out loud.

(The emotion, not the TV show.)

Also, I had no idea that this MTV Splash Page thing existed until I got the Google alert tonight. When comics and movies collide? I'm in!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Saturday Morning Miscellany

In the interest of having at least one or two posts a week, I've decided to give myself some kind of schedule. The schedule will involve a reaction to my weekly haul, usually Wednesday night or Thursday morning, and then some kind of post where I, like, answer a question. This is totally a rip off of the Fantastic Fangirls, which I wholeheartedly admit, but I'll use different questions.

Unless theirs are good.

(Or they tell me to stop.)

I also have some other things I really want to write about, like the Dynamite Athena book (confusing up until the last page which just enraged me), the end of the first arc of Batgirl, and Manhunter. MANHUNTER. So I'm going to try to buckle down and get myself into a regular posting habit so there are no more long periods of radio silence.

I drove my friend (a Fangirl) down to the Baltimore Comic-Con last weekend, because I was headed that way for a wedding and wanted company. She got four of my things signed by four artists. Steve Lieber sketched me a Carrie inside of my Whiteout book! Eee! I also got Stuart Immoment (on Secret Identity 1), Terry Moore (Echo TP 1), and Cully Hammer on the cover of the reprint of TEC 854. The one with the cool Batwoman/Question/Lightning thing.

Speaking of comic cons, are there any readers in the Boston area who know anything about the upcoming Boston one? It seems really really small, almost third tier, and considering the huge Anime convention that happens here every year, I'm sort of surprised. It's like it's mainly there to showcase merchants, not artists or writers. I just feel like a city like Boston can pull in some big names. Not to denigrate the guests that are going, but as only a newly-back-in fan, I have a feeling there's not a lot of pull to go to this con for people like me or the casual fan. They also apparently have it twice a year, in October and April, which seems really weird.

So I'm looking for some input on that, if anyone has any. I've been chatting with some people and the consensus is that if Boston had a good con, they'd be all about going. The closest is NY,CCC and that's a circus since comic movies pushed everything more mainstream. A lot of New Englanders go down anyway, or go to Baltimore, or other east coast cons, and I think that's a shame.

Feedback! Go to it. (General feedback on comic con experiences, including small cons would be appreciated too. ;) )

And that's it for this Saturday morning. I'll be back regularly, though. Thanks for your patience.

Friday, October 2, 2009

End of the Elegy

Okay, I'm late. Sorry. TEC came out last week. But I was too busy writing about The Web and lesbian movies, and you know how I get about lesbian movies.

So back to lesbian comic book characters.

(Does anyone who reads this watch House? I'm angry at it right now and considering an entry-long rant.)

I was chatting with my comic book guy (not to be confused with the Comic Book Guy, since mine is not obese or an ass) about TEC when I went in to get this week's pull. He's bummed that JH Williams' awesome art is going to get less pages, but he and I agreed that having the Question have the main story for a bit will be cool. He also convinced me to buy the Shang-Chi title, which was a really good sell, because the art was totally awesome and made up for the dreck that was New Mutants this month. Plus, I don't like Deadpool and I still enjoyed immensely. So there's that.

Anyway, back to the end of the "Elegy" storyline in Detective Comics. I thought it was... fine?

Yeah, I don't know. There's something about Kate Kane that's just not selling me. I really really really really really like Batwoman, but I just don't like Kate Kane. Unless she's being Batwoman-esque.

Looks good in a tux, though.

I thought that image needed to be nice and centered and a bit large. Seriously, seeing a woman in a tux out on a date with a pretty blonde is really neat (especially with Bob Kane's name in the corner, bringing the history into it). If only that woman had skin pigmentation.

Though at least now I sort of get why she doesn't. The cover of the book (which has been well linked/publicized/whatever as an example of J.H. Williams' awesome art) sort of gave me a clue about where we were going with this. Also I watch too many movies, read too many books, and haven't been surprised by a twist ending since Wild Things (but only because I didn't expect a movie like that to be intelligent enough to have a twist ending). Okay, that's not entirely true. Mad Men got me this week.

Anyway, I should have known. The Red Queen and the White Queen are sisters, after all (of course they're also cats, but hey). And I don't care if she's calling herself Alice, she's clearly meant to be the White Queen to Kate's Red Queen. So there we go, sisters. I'm sure I'll feel way more interested in this once we get into her backstory and find out what the deal with her sister is. And hopefully their shared albinism.

I'm looking forward to her meeting Renee, too, because I enjoy their relationship.

But that's the future (erm, past). Overall I was happy with these first four issues that made up the first arc. They didn't blow me away, storywise, but they did artwise, and the story was certainly interesting enough that I didn't get bored.

I've got my quibbles (skin pigmentation, daddy issues, lesbian vampires, and so on) but I think this is one of my favorite titles I'm reading right now. Up there with Power Girl (I hang my head, but it's fun!) and ... actually, I'm mixed on everything else. Supergirl's stuck in a crossover, and I enjoy the Blackest Night stuff, but I couldn't pin down one specific title of those yet. I'm excited to read a Flash title, but I don't like Barry Allen's return, so that detracts from it. Sirens is fun, but some of the stuff really drags on me, and I'm completely out of Streets, except for the Manhunter co-feature. And I'm enjoying Adventure Comics, but we'll see how it goes with a new writer and artist (though yay for their Flash ongoing... as long as it's not Barry) ... and Red Robin is alienating me along with Tim, so we'll see on that, too.

So right now I'm just trying to figure out what it is about Kate Kane that isn't working for me and hoping that her origin story will help with that. At least she can stand upright without the aid of Kryptonian superpowers. Always a bonus. And she's got a sharp wit, which I generally like (hey, she can hold her own with Renee). But... something. I don't know.

But I still like Batwoman. It's funny, because I've never really felt this split between the secret identities and the costumed superheroes in the comics, only in TV and movies. Like my favorite Batman is Michael Keaton but my favorite Bruce Wayne is Christian Bale. Or my favorite Clark Kent is Dean Cain, but my favorite Superman is Brandon Routh (blasphemy, I know, but don't detract from his awesome performance just because the movie was bad).

I feel like I keep saying "we'll see" a lot. I just have to get used to reading ongoings again, instead of trades. I really do have to wait and see. At least I'm feeling a optimistic, right? Right!