Reading: Comic Book Reviews

Chew Vol 1 Taster’s Choice (2009): This is one of the weirdest premises for a comic I’ve read yet.  The US is in a post bird-flu world that left 23 million dead. Well, maybe. As a result, the most important and powerful law enforcement branch is the Food and Drug Administration. Tony Chu is an agent of the FDA and more he is a Cibopathic.  This means he gets psychic impressions of what he eats. This first issue introduces us to the main characters and explains how Chu got into the FDA. It’s not a comic for the squeamish especially since Chu gets impressions from whatever he eats, not just food. The story, by John Layman (who also does the lettering), is completely engrossing. By having Chu thrust into the world of food related crimes, the audience is right there with him.  Moreso, Layman does a great job of making the more immediate stories interesting why setting up the long story.  The artwork, by Louisiana native Rob Guillory  (who will also be at Louisiana Comic Con Lafayette), is gritty and fits the noir tone of the writing. The story is often bloody, and Guillory, who also does the coloring, does a great job of showing us the gore without ever going into just pure goriness.

Wonder Woman Vol 2: I read Greg Rucka’s Wonder Woman Volume 1 a while back.  That book collected the odd numbers from 1-13 and dealt with who exactly Wonder Woman is/was.  This is a character that has gone through numerous reboots. This story which collects the even issues from 2-14 and here Rucka provides his own origin story. It’s a great story to get people who loved the movie interested in comics. We discover Diana’s powers at the same time we do. We get introduced to her greatest villain as well.  Rucka is a great writer and makes you interested in every character by giving each a chance to develop even if they are not given plenty of time. The art work, by Nicola Scott (and in the interlude Bilquis Evely) is gorgeous.  This is at its heart is a story of hope and the coloring, done by Romulo Fajardo Jr, matches the tone.  At the beginning of this story, Diana doesn’t speak English. Jodi Wynne’s lettering does a great job of informing us of when she is having trouble with communicating.  Again, if you liked the movie, this is a great book to read. In fact, I would read this one first and then Volume 1.

ComicCon-ing: Louisiana Comic Con Update

Louisiana Comic Con just keeps getting better.  They just announced Sean Astin will be attending! Mr. Astin is most famous for his roles in The Goonies and Rudy as well as playing the hero of the Lord of the Rings Trilogy, Sean Astin. Not only is he a great guest to meet, if he does a panel, attend.  He is funny and charming and has accumulated great stories in his four decades of acting.

Sometimes celebrities have to cancel cons, most often because they get another job.  Actors are independent contractors with bills to pay.  Shannon Purser has to cancel her appearance at the Louisiana Comic Con. Not for a job, but because she’s done her job very well.  She is going to be at the Emmy’s celebrating her nomination for her role in Stranger Things.  This is awesome.

Popular attractions, especially with the young ones, at cons are often vehicles from popular movies. The Jurrasic Park jeep will be at LCC and it will probably be very crowded. The vehicle is owned by Cosplayinc who will also be at the con.  These people do amazing work. They often do panels as well.  The deadline for panels just passed this Friday.  As soon as the schedule is out

Speaking of panels, the deadline for panels just passed this Friday.  As soon as the schedule is out we will definitely talk about it.

 

Listening: Glen Campbell

If you look at my record shelf, Glen Campbell is an outlier.  Most of the records are from the 80s and 90s alternative acts, classic rock, and jazz.  Then there is Glen Campbell.  Then when you truly think about it, it belongs right there with him.  Glen Campbell loved jazz and played on some the of the great albums of the 60s as a session player.  In the late 2000s, his Meet Glen Campbell featured mainly artists who were alternative acts from the 80s and 90s.

I loved him because he knew how to interpret a song.  Sometimes he knew how to change a song for better.  “Galveston” started out as an anti-war song and he turned it into a simple song of why one goes to war…and why one doesn’t want to go.  By making it more ambiguous about the soldier’s feelings, he brilliantly made it more melancholic.  Sometimes he just did this with his voice.  The Velvet Underground’s “Jesus” is full of doubt while his is full of longing.

And he could play the guitar.  He played on Pet Sounds.  His solo on “Whitcita Lineman” is just as full of longing as the words and his singing.  We did get to see him on his farewell tour, and while his memory couldn’t remember most words without a teleprompter, his fingers remembered where every single note was.

Today, at work, we have a lot of time to get our classroom and lessons ready for the first day of school tomorrow. If you come to my room, speak up, because  I won’t be turning Mr. Campbell down.

ComicCon-ing: More News on Louisiana Comic Con

Barry Bostwick is going to Louisiana Comic Con!  Brad Majors from Rocky Horror Picture Show and Mayor Randall Winston from Spin City!  In fact, he created the role of Danny Zuko on  Broadway. If you are a fan of his work, go meet him.  His autograph price is very reasonable, and he always has great conversations with his guests (or at least he has with our friends and us!).

For comics, Greg Burnham will be there.  He is co-creator of Tuskegee Heirs, a futuristic sci-fi comic that looks fondly on the past by honoring the historic Tuskegee Airmen.

They not only update what celebrities and comic creators will be there but they also actually promote the vendors.  We do lots of research on cons, and this is one of the best efforts I’ve seen at promoting the entire con.  One vendor, I’m looking forward to visiting is Hal Moore, an artist from Louisiana. His self-published comics sound like a book I would like, and his art looks fantastic.  I also want to visit Top End Gaming’s booth even though we don’t really have much more room for our nerdy collections.

At least one of us will have our Nola Nerd Couple shirt on so if you see us come say hello!