Category Archives: Comic Books
Real Name: Doctor Clark Savage Jr.
Base of Operations: Empire State Building, New York City and The Fortress of Solitude, The Arctic
Occupation: Scientist, Adventurer
Marital Status: Single
Group Affiliation: None
Attributes: Agility: d8, Smarts: d12, Spirit: d12, Strength: d12, Vigor d12
Charisma:+? , Pace: 6, Parry: ?, Toughness: 9
Skills: Climbing: d8, Fighting: d10, Healing: d??, Investigation: d10, Knowledge (Medicine): d12, Knowledge (Science): d?, Notice: d12, Persuasion: d?, Piloting: d10, Repair: d?, Survival: d?, Swimming: d6.
Edges: Alertness, Attractive, Block, Brilliant Scientist*, Brave, Brawny, Charismatic, Connections, Combat Reflexes, Fast Healer, Filthy Rich, Font of Information*, Hard to Kill, Imp. Tough as Nails, Iron Jaw*, Jack-of-All-Trades, Photographic Memory*, Scholar.
* Denotes an Edge from Thrilling Tales
Hindrances: Heroic, Vow (….)
I’m going to post this as is and when I start tweaking it to my liking I’m going to make it a page (as opposed to a post) and link it up off the main site. I will also do that with the Batman First Wave write up too.
Doc is this world’s Superman.
Oh thank the maker it’s the final week! I didn’t even get through all of last weeks titles because this whole reboot has been a big disappointment.
HAWKMAN – From reading the solicitations it really sounded like this book was going to be a full reboot of Hawkman which is greatly needed. Did they do that? Of course fucking not! He’s even more confusing than ever. Ugh, terrible.
FIRESTORM – Here’s a book that is a full reboot and didn’t need it! Not only that, it has bullshit forced racial issues and makes whitey look bad. I’m sick of it. Jason Rausch (black) use to have an abusive father. Now in Post New 52, he’s this nice fatherly type. Ronnie Raymond (white) asks his mother why they have no black friends because Jason bitched to Ronnie that the school didn’t have any black quarterbacks. Huh? Besides that, the origin was muddled and an all around terrible book.
ALL-STAR WESTERN – Ahh! So refreshing! This book was amazing! It had a great narrative, buddy cop feel, action, mystery and a great setup of what’s to come. Palmiotti and Gray knocked this out of the park. This and Animal Man are tied for my top choices of all the New 52 books.
AQUAMAN – I didn’t expect much from this but Geoff Johns always delivers a solid story. It addresses all the memes regarding Aquaman and was pretty humorous in doing so. I will be checking this one out.
FLASH – Wally West is, and always will be, my Flash. This was a solid superhero book and was a fun read. I loved te ring/costume combo but still nothing really jumped out and grabbed me. I will be following it for a few more issues to see if it goes anywhere.
GREEN LANTERN: NEW GUARDIANS – I see the direction they are going with this and like it. I’ve never been a big Hal Jordan fan and when Kyle was introduced I started following Green lantern. I’m glad he’s back and not stuck as a second stringer. My one complaint is the flashback sequence wasn’t really identified and (of course) more continuity issues. Allegedly Emerald Twilight was written out of continuity (which is what introduced Kyle) but the way Kyle gets his ring is exactly how it happened in pre-Flashpoint continuity.
I, VAMPIRE –
JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK –
SUPERMAN – This book should be titled ANGRY SUPERMAN. It was also very wordy for a comic book and was the longest read of all the New 52 issues. It’s pretty typical Superman fare and nothing really makes it jump out.
TEEN TITANS – Another full on reboot book that didn’t need it. It was a decent read but I just absolutely hate the changes they made. Also it fucks up continuity as some of the other books do. I can’t see myself reading many more issues.
I love pulp, comics books and role playing games! When I created my Classic Site back in the early 90’s it was to showcase my character write-ups and house rules. Being a huge comic book fan, 99% of those write-ups were superheroes using a superhero based RPG system. DC tried getting into pulp comics in 2010 using their street level heroes as well as licensing some popular pulp characters. I thought I would try to do what I’ve done in the past and showcase them as write ups but using a pulp based rules system instead.
I was happy to see DC make an attempt at getting pulp comics going with their First Wave series but sadly the spin off books were quite bad and they neglected to launch a pulp Batman one! Still the Batman/Doc Savage Special and the original First Wave mini series were a lot of fun to read.
The concept of DC’s pulp world has no super powered beings in it and uses a blend of licensed pulp characters like Doc Savage and the Avenger along with Batman, The Blackhawks and even Will Eisner’s The Spirit. The time period it took place in was just as blended. Dirigibles and 1940’s looking cars were seen along with cell phones and flat screen TV’s.
Brian Azzarello wrote the special and the mini series to set the world in motion. Sadly First Wave ended before it uh, ended… In other words it was pretty much cancelled before the last issue came out.
The Two-Fisted Tales RPG by Precis Intermedia Games is an ENnie nominated Role Playing Game made for the pulp genre. It features an easy to learn, fast paced rules system that scales perfectly with DC’s First Wave. My goal is to create character write-ups using the Two-Fisted Tales rules set for Batman, Doc Savage, The Avenger, The Spirit and others. This will be a work in progress so stay tuned.
I did not finish this weeks books. It stems from losing interest in reading some of the books, trying to save some money and… some of them just sucked so bad it ruined it for me.
Week three is upon us and I took home a bigger haul than I thought I would. So far there aren’t too many books I can see myself getting past the third issue so let’s see if Week 3 makes a difference. Be warned, there are spoilers ahead.
BATMAN – Very good book. Good backstory and good narrative. I also like how this is more detective than Detective is. In other words, this has more of a mystery feel to it than Detective Comics did. The art styling was fantastic! Capullo did a helluva job and is a great sequential story teller.
BLUE BEETLE – A wonderful and to the point prologue. Also a real jumping on point for new reader, something most titles in this reboot do not do well. I like the changes to his origin (Mayan instead of Egyptian) and this book is going on the pull list. The only thing I didn’t care much for is the ‘cultural diversity’ that seems to permeate DC’s books when they have a minority character in the lead. It feels too forced.
CAPTAIN ATOM – Another DC book that is not a starting point for new readers… or old readers for that matter. I’m not sure what’s going on with his background or this organization he works for but the writing style itself was easy enough to follow. I will give it a few more issues.
LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES – No way for new readers! Almost as bad as Green Lantern when it comes to that but.. (but!) I’m a huge LSH fan and I’m happy that Levitz is writing it too. Even if I’m confused. On the pull list!
NIGHTWING – I don’t have experience with any of Kyle Higgins’ work before so I’m glad I can go in without any prior bias. I liked. A lot! He made great use of the narrative, great characterization, some good background on Dick’s time in the circus and a good intro to a new villain. This is definitely on the pull list.
WONDER WOMAN – This is a very different take on Wonder Woman. Very. Different. I did like what I read and have always thought Azzarello’s work was solid. This book has gotten my interest and I will be following it.
RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS – Ehh… Terrible. Just terrible. This one and Mr. Terrific are on the top of my DC Deadpool List. Google the reviews on this book and go from there. What they did to Starfire was just terrible.
WIth DC bringing back the Multiverse and also rebooting their main continuity without the merged realities of the pre-Crisis Earth-1, 2, 4 and S, there leaves an opening to explore those other parallel world’s.
As seen at the end of 52 maxi series, Mr. Mind (an Earth-S villain) ‘ate’ the realities of all 52 Worlds twisting most of them into their pre-Crisis versions. For the most part. Let’s look at what we have;
EARTH-1 – Being developed in graphic novel format by J. Michael Straczynski and Geoff Johns doing Superman and Batman respectively. This seems to be their playground for now. Let’s leave it alone.
EARTH-2 – Finally getting a JSA series after much fan outcry. One of the worst things about this post-Flashpoint mess was the removal of a very beloved superteam.
EARTH-3 – Some pretty cool changes as seen in 52 but it doesn’t concern me.
EARTH-4 – Home of the Charlton characters hasn’t any appearances since the Crisis on Infinite Earth’s in 1986. This is ripe for expansion and one of the parallel worlds I want to focus on.
EARTH-5 – Home of Captain Marvel and the Fawcett characters. Cap has a big fan following and he’s seen print pre-Crisis.
This is what I would do:
CAPTAIN ATOM – His name would be Nathaniel Allen Adam, a combo of pre and post Crisis. He would be an Air Force pilot who volunteered to fly an experimental nuclear powered ship shielded with an alien metal called ‘Dilustel’ into space. The ship malfunctions (sabotage maybe?), blows up and Captain Adam is vaporized in space. As in pre-Crisis continuity he manages to pull himself back together atom by atom but it takes him 40+ years to do it thereby firmly depositing himself in the modern day. I’m still up in the air if I would do a story arc with him being gold and then changing to silver in a more patriotic looking costume after hooking back up with the government. And when he coats himself the Dilustel, he’s anatomically correct so he will be wearing pants.
BLUE BEETLE – Archaeology professor and family man Dan Garret would be the current Blue Beetle of this world. His magic scarab will form into his blue chainmail costume but with some modern looking updates (but nothing to the extreme like with Jaime Reyes though). He would have flight, invulnerability, super-strength and be able to shoot lightning. Much the same as he’s always been. Being a professor, he has a TA by the name of Ted Kord, a mechanical genius and member of the gymnastics team. See where I’m going with this? Very similar death too due to Ted’s uncle Jarvis.
BLUE BEETLE II – After Ted Kord inherits the scarab from his mentor Dan Garret he finds that it just will not work for him. But that’s OK! Being the mechanical genius that he is, he invents his own arsenal and flying Bug. He also discovers that the scarab is far from useless, it is a source of untapped power. He uses it to power…. something. His base? New powered suit of armor (Kind of Kingdom Come-ish) or maybe the Bug itself? Who knows. Ted drives on in Dan’s name and does him much honor.
THE QUESTION – I loved how he was portrayed in the Justice League Unlimited Cartoon and I would go along those lines. He’s a detective and street level character, almost Vertigo-esque. His clothes would turn a darker color when he activates the gas. Powder blue and orange aren’t going to cut it.
NIGHTSHADE & SON OF VULCAN – Truthfully, I haven’t really put too much thought into these characters. Both are magic based and have the opportunity for some world building there.
SARGE STEEL – Kind of a Nick Fury type but missing a hand instead of an eye. He would be in charge of the governmental organization that Captain Atom eventually becomes a part of.
THE VILLAINS – I can’t recall any Earth-4 villains! Really. I would take Maxwell Lord just as he is from New-Earth and make him a Luthor level villain. Plastique and Major Force would fit right in with Captain Atom but more would need to be created for the rest of the characters. After all, heroes are defined by their villains.
CAPTAIN MARVEL & THE MARVEL FAMILY – Make it fun, goofy and intelligent and try to recapture the feel that made the Golden Age series so popular. I would do a large story arc starting with their origin in 1939, a crossover with the WWII Justice Society on Earth-2 and their final adventure where Billy, Mary and Freddy along with the Sivana Family get trapped in the Suspendium Bubble. The next arc would bring them into modern times.
IBIS – Ibis is an immortal and now act as a guide for the Marvel’s after they come into modern times. He’s a strong magic user and would trained a couple apprentices and maybe even had a couple kids with Tala by the time he’s in modern day.
BULLETMAN – The way he was shown in the Batman: The Brave and the Bold cartoon was fantastic! His costume will be updated to a more Rocketeer feel and the exploding sound effect when he takes off from flight will be worked in. His helmet that attracts bullets to it needs to go! His legacy character may be a gun wielding character with a ‘bulletproof’ vest that absorbs kinetic energy causing bullets (among other things) to drop after they hit. Not much of a tie in to his legacy but it could be a modification of his helmet??
MR SCARLET & PINKY – Oh dear God these two needs some help. Slight updates to the Golden Age costumes. Same old, same old. There legacy characters would have a Daredevil movie type costume to them. I haven’t put too much thought into these two.
SPY SMASHER – A great Golden Age character but I can’t envsion him being brought into the modern age as is. His modern incarnation would be a counter terrorism/spycatcher (go figure) going by the name Codename: Spy Smasher and is referred to as Agent Armstrong. Or something like that.
MINUTE-MAN – A patriot type that was also working for the military. His program could have evolved over the years since WWII ended into a group of special forces types. This is a hard one to do just because he’s quite corny and the Minute Men has been done in real life recently. Something will come to me eventually.
THE VILLAINS – The Sivana’s, Black Adam, Mr. Mind, IBAC… there are tons of Marvel Family villains to use. The other characters not so much, so again a great opportunity to create more.
I quickly go over my initial impressions of DC’s New52 Week 2 while trying not to spoil too much. This week, I may have found a title I don’t want to read past the first issue. It was bad, really bad.
LEGION LOST – I’m a huge Legion fan and I thought Nicieza did a great job with this. They picked underused characters with a lot of potential (plus T-Wolf has always been one of my favorite characters). They also picked the most alien looking ones of the bunch to be stranded in the past.
MR. TERRIFIC – Hated it. Hated the art, hated the pretentiousness of the character, hated the dialogue and mostly hated the forced (non) race issues. If a black guy ever saved my life and my response was “Thanks black guy”, I would deserve a punch in the mouth. Doesn’t have a bright future with me.
BATMAN & ROBIN – Bat-poles! I haven’t read much of the Bat-Family but it seems that’ll be changing. This was a great issue. I got a clear sense of what Damien is all about, a good reference to the past, excellent characterizations, plot and a good intro to a new(?) villain. This is on the pull list.
BATWOMAN – I’ve never read an issue of Batwoman before this and I liked this quite a bit. I’m not sure what the double page spread flashback/narrative was about at the end of the book but hopefully it’ll be better explained in future issues. I just want to know why the hell is she so pale? I mean she’s chalk white.
DEATHSTROKE – Another surprisingly good book that had a good story and great characterization. Slade most certainly is a badass and the twist at the end not only proved it but was great. This is going on the pull list.
DEMON KNIGHTS – This was a great book! Cornell did a great job of introducing the characters and the twist at the end was well done. The art for this book is just stunning! On the pull list.
FRANKENSTEIN: AGENT OF SHADE – Why is that Lemire can take the oddball characters I have no interest in and make them cool? He made use of the S.H.A.D.E.-net as a narrative tool and it worked wonderfully to advance the story.
GREEN LANTERN – A good book but there is no way in hell that this is a jumping on point for new readers. No flashbacks, no narrative and no clue to tell new readers what is going on. This reboot is failing in that sense. I’m getting the same vibe from the Bat-books too but everybody knows what Batman is about.
RED LANTERN – This was very well done. I don’t know too much about the Red lanterns but through flashbacks and Atrocitus’ narration I got a good idea of what they are about. The foreshadowing grabbed my attention and I’m curious as to what is going to happen next.
GRIFTER – Meh. The main character was panicky and freaking out over hearing voices in his head but later you find out he’s a former Delta (Force) operator. It didn’t seem too in character with someone with that level of training especially in a world with superheroes.
RESURRECTION MAN – This was OK overall. They didn’t delve too much into Mitch’s background as to why he can resurrect but the story kept my attention and introduced a supernatural element to a hero who gained his abilities through technology (at least in pre-Flashpoint continuity).
SUICIDE SQUAD – Great pacing, great intro to the characters, this looks like it’s going on the pull list. One question, is the cliffhanger supposed to be Amanda Waller all skinny, younger and better looking, or am I missing something?
SUPERBOY – I have to say, I didn’t have much hope for this book. They are changing his origin a bit because the Death of Superman storyline is no longer supposed to be within continuity but Superman himself hinted at it in Swamp Thing. So who knows.
I would like to say that all of these books will be given at least two more issue to hit their stride. On that note, here’s what I think.
ACTION – First off, I love Superman’s tough guy attitude! It’s very indicative of his first appearance in Action Comics #1 (1938). I get the whole jeans and t-shirt thing and I really liked how Lex Luthor was introduced. Morrison’s writing can be very hit or miss for me but he really uses a lot of silver age/pre-crisis references in his work and I can appreciate that.
DETECTIVE – I haven’t been reading much Batman lately but if this is the way Tony Daniel is going to keep writing Detective, I may be on board for more issues. It certainly had a darker, edgier feel and with the cliffhanger ending made it feel more like a horror comic than action/adventure.
GREEN ARROW – I like that he’s more of a gadgeteer type hero, I find his team interesting and I’m happy to see the trick arrows back. You don’t find out much about what his motivations are but I don’t doubt they will be in the next few issues. He also looks like Connor… a lot.
STORMWATCH – I don’t have much experience with the characters and again as with most of the DCnU relaunched titles there isn’t a lot of backstory but I liked this book quite a bit.
BATGIRL – Gail Simone crammed a lot of stuff into this book, a new villain, some background on the whole wheelchair thing, character development and a new supporting character. She did a good job doing it too. If it wasn’t for her and her work on Birds of Prey I probably would have passed in this book. So far so good.
MEN OF WAR – I want a war book in DC that combines real military interaction with super-powered beings. I didn’t quite get Rock’s motivation nor did I really care about the dialogue or how he interacted with his superiors. What I thought was great was the Navy SEAL backup story.
HAWK & DOVE – Don Hall died in ‘The greatest crisis the world has ever seen’. I tweeted writer Sterling Gates about it;
Me: Nice job with H&D #1! Quick question, are you going to expound upon the ‘crisis’ that killed Don? I’m continuity confused.
Sterling Gates: “Maybe. Stop worrying about the continuity of it, though! It doesn’t have to be COIE! Just a “crisis.””
Don’t worry about continuity? Did he really say that? DC rebooted their entire franchise because of it. Anyway, I can do an entire blog post on this but I will give it a few more issues to see if anything pans out. Oh yeah Liefield’s art is as shitty as usual.
STATIC SHOCK – Damn… I forgot to read it. Rumor has it that Hardware shows up too. Must get on it.
OMAC – I love Giffen but this issue was pretty forgettable. The main character hardly even appeared in the book and we got no background at all.
JLI – Batman backing up Booster Gold as a capable leader? Oh yeah, big time revised continuity. And what’s with his footie pajama costume? Not too bad overall but definitely not pre-Flashpoint JLI. I’ll take a wait and see with this one.
ANIMAL MAN – Loved it, loved it, loved it! I never gave two craps about this character until I read this book. Well paced, great dialogue and a great cliffhanger. Absolutely on the pull list.
SWAMP THING – Another character I didn’t care much about. This was a well done issue, good character development and apparently being the Continuity Whore that I am, it seems Superman died and came back too even though that was ejected from current continuity. And why am I learning that in a Swamp Thing title?
BATWING – Another book that was meh. It was standard superhero fare, standard love interest and standard new villain type (Massacre = African Joker?) and no explanation at all why Batman hooked him up with his technology. I don’t see myself getting this beyond a few issues.
This is the book that I have been looking forward to the most. It’s his second major reboot but (it looks like) they are bringing him more in line with his Golden Age roots. I’m hit or miss on Morrison’s writing but I’m too much of Superman fan to not have hope for it.
The only reason I am even thinking about getting Batgirl is because Gail Simone is writing it. Period. Batgirl was lame to begin with but her Oracle character has been fleshed out (and written better) for many years.
Being former Army, I want to see how they are going to pull this off. Putting the realism of combat troops into a supervillain battleground has me intrigued.
I saw the sneak preview of Green Arrow a couple of days ago and I liked it. His new costume has a Smallville vibe to it, he’s back to being a rich CEO (again) and using high tech toys (again). This time he’s working with a team to help him on his missions.
More of a curiosity thing. I don’t think the Wildstorm characters fit into the mainstream DCU even with the addition of the Martian Manhunter. Just as with Batgirl, the only reason I’m giving it a try is because of the writer.