Thee Comic Column #17: Best Comic Moments of 2012

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Thee Comic Column #16: The Xmas Buying Guide

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In honor of the consumer frenzy and gift-buying insanity of the season, I thought I’d throw up a little guide to some of the collections and graphic novels that I feel would make great gifts for any discerning fan of graphic fiction. I figured to help you match like-minded material with potentially varied interests of those on your lists I’d break them up into three categories.

 

 

The Super Hero/action fan – defined as those who may or may not be familiar with comics but are fans of big budget movies based on them, ie – Joss Whedon’s The Avengers, Christoper Nolan’s Dark Knight Trilogy or flix like Kick Ass, Super or the brilliant Chronicle.

Shawn’s Top 10 Albums of 2012

This is never easy. Despite what naysayers might have you believe about the quality of music and its supposed decline over the past twenty years I maintain (as I always have) that there is so much good, new music out there I could very easily go bankrupt buying it.

The emphasis there is on buying it in a post-pirate world.

Soooooo how hard is it for me to narrow my yearly musical endeavors down to a handful of records? Pretty f”ing hard. Nonetheless, I do it every year and this year is no different. What follows are my ten favorite albums from 2012.

Thee Comic Column #15: The Walking Dead

The Walking Dead (image: AMC)

The Walking Dead (image: AMC)

SPOILER ALERT!!!

Some may remember that my very first installment of Thee Comic Column was about The Walking Dead – the comic book. I have been a fan of the book since about 2005 and in the seven since then I still maintain that it is hands down the best comic book out there. Robert Kirkman’s story unfolds at a masterful pace and his characters truly are never safe – therefore they undergo radical bouts of actual character development from issue to issue. Charlie Adlard’s art is poetic in it’s grim and often tarnishes tones, foreboding where appropriate, emotional when needed and all around consistent in its world-building. When Rick Grimes and company are inside a prison or a house or a community for long periods I truly feel as they must – that there is nothing else beyond. When they strike out into the wild, intrepid and vulnerable I feel this too, sometimes with quick, furtive glances over my own shoulder. Inspired to wax on philosophically like I am inclined to do here about this book is it any wonder that I had major issues with AMC’s tv show.

The Comic Column #14: Goodbye Hellblazer, Hello Constantine

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I consider myself a huge fan of Alan Moore’s bad luck street mage John Constantine, and yet I’ve not read a current issue of the now twenty-four year old book in approximately six years. Admittedly that makes me the worst kind of fan – the kind that is always glad something’s there, but then derelict on supporting it. In light of recent news I carry this guilt heavy, and yet there was a time when I couldn’t have ever seen myself not continuing to obsessively read the adventures of John Constantine. Be that as it may I had a strange parting of ways with the book – really no fault of its own – and though I’ve always retained a wikipedia-curiosity about its continued continuity, I really feel as though I absorbed Hellblazer and then put it down.

Record Review: Deftones Koi No Yokan

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I’ve had a week to get to know the new Deftones record Koi No Yokan and in that time it has done what almost all other Deftones albums have done – it has opened up to me, blossomed into yet another ethereal beauty that quakes with 2 AM fuzz, aquatic shifts in tempo and a tone that is both haunting and beautiful. Lead singer Chino Moreno’s voice is a major part of that haunted quality, and it’s with that in mind that I’d like to open this discussion, because I would argue that Moreno’s voice is quite unlike anyone else’s in the annals of “heavy” music.

Thee Comic Column #13: The Boys wraps up with issue #72

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Garth Ennis’ long-running series The Boys ended this week with the release of issue #72 and it was fine reading indeed. Similar to Preacher (the GREATEST comic series EVER in this guy’s humble opinion) the final issue of The Boys was an almost lilting outro compared to the absolute mayhem that has defined the series, especially in the last year and a half as the story really began to ramp up toward its conclusion. Now that it’s over I’m looking forward to going back and re-reading the series from the beginning to really smooth out some of the perceived kinks I experienced following it monthly – all most likely my own fault.

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