Halloween Scene: Halloween Resurrection (2002)

Finally seeing the last chapter in a long running horror franchise is a strange experience. I put off seeing H20 and Resurrection for a while because I had heard that they negated the fourth, fifth and sixth installments. Now, if you go and read that last link, you’ll read that I don’t actually like The Curse Of Michael Myers because it’s basically 2/3 of a movie and doesn’t make a lot of sense. Anyway, once Resurrection popped up on Netflix Instant and it became October, I figured I’d give it a shot.

The plot this time around involves a group of kids being sent to the Myers house in Haddonfield, Illinois as a kind of haunted house reality show that’s only online. Viewers can control the experience to some extent (I didn’t quite catch that part), which actually adds to the Swiss cheese like tapestry of plot holes that makes the movie up. Before I get to that, though, I’ll add a few compliments. I think it’s cool how the movie jumped on the haunted house show bandwagon well before it became a national phenomena. If memory serves, it’s pretty similar to the MTV series Fear that used a very similar set-up was an early step in this evolution. They also use computers, texting, webcams and a few other bits of tech. I also thought they had a pretty good last 20 minutes where Myers was chasing down the Final Girl who was really clear from the very beginning.

Of course, all that was ruined when she grabbed a chainsaw and, with each slash of it, said “This is for SOANDSO.” Oi. But lame dialog isn’t the worst part, it’s all those plot holes. Man, there’s a ton. For this movie to work, pretty much everyone in it has to be a completely inattentive moron. First of all, the man Laurie Strode killed in the previous film wasn’t as tall or fit as Michael, yet she thought it was him. The second guard to get whacked in the beginning ignored his headless comrade on the ground in a well-lit room. The dude who’s obsessed with food has to not shine his flashlight directly in front of him in a dark room not to see Michael Myers. Oh and one guy gets murdered in the house and screams like crazy and no one notices or seems to care that he’s gone.

A few other quick points. First off, I was surprised at how much they made Jamie Lee Curtis look like she did in the first and second Halloween flicks when she’s in the mental institution. She wears her hair so short now that she doesn’t usually look like she did back then, but it’s pretty spot on. Of course, I think it’s lame that, after insisting that none of the movies after the second one counted because she wasn’t in them only to make sure SPOILER her character would die in the beginning of this one so she wouldn’t show up again. Really? Adults act this way? Speaking of acting, Tyra Banks can’t do it which is a shocker because I remember her being great on Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air. The funniest part? She’s playing a producer on a reality show, which is something she is, and she can’t even make it look convincing. Last point, who in their right mind would go to Haddonfield University?

So, while I expected to hate the flick, I actually wound up kinda sorta liking it. As far as a story goes, it’s nothing spectacular or even great, but I have to say it’s better than Curse and I’d prefer to watch either of those over Rob Zombie’s abominations. Speaking of which, don’t expect a post about his sequel, watching his remake was bad enough to turn me off to that dude’s flicks forever.

Just Finished The IT Crowd (2006-2010)

Back around the time the missus and I watched Veronica Mars (can’t remember if it was before or after we finished), we gave the first three episodes of the British series The IT Crowd a shot. It didn’t really take. But, earlier this week I was looking for something to immerse myself in and decided on this geek-centric after some Netflix Instant queue flipping. I’m really glad I did.

If you’re unfamiliar, the show is about the information technology guys at a big company and their newly hired boss who knows nothing about computers. Chris O’Dowd (who played the cop in Bridesmaids) stars as misanthropic Roy alongside Richard Ayoade’s ubernerd Moss while Katherine Parkinson plays the role of their bosslady (ie relationship manager). The show revolves around their misadventures in world that doesn’t understand them or their business (every time someone calls for computer help, they automatically ask if the clueless victim has turned the computer off and on again). There’s also enough geekery of all sorts to be found on set to keep you busy for a year from indie art all over the walls and comics being read by Roy to all the tech jokes you can handle. One episode revolves around D&D while a few others around British TV shows. There’s even an extended A-Team bit!

So why didn’t I like the show right off the bat? Well, those first few episodes are kind of dumb. Have you ever seen Extras? Remember how Andy got that show When The Whistle Blows that was a workplace comedy set in pretty much one big room and corny catchphrases were being bandied about like badminton birdies? Well that’s what The IT Crowd seemed like at first. I don’t really have a problem with broad comedy like that, but it wasn’t what I was expecting. People I know and whose opinions I agree with really dug this show. Really? THIS show?

I don’t think there’s anything particularly game changing between episodes three and four, but maybe I was just in a better mindset when I turned the fourth episode on this week. Maybe there’s a huge jump in quality or comedy between those episodes. I’m not quite sure. Maybe I just said “screw it” and let myself enjoy these goofy characters who can’t really seem to catch a break. While I did wind up quite enjoying the show, I can’t say it ever really broke away from the goofiness that Extras was poking fun at. There are some eye-rollingly dumb moments, but then they’re followed up by a joke so brilliant I couldn’t stop laughing.

I’m not familiar enough with British comedy to know whether the brains behind The IT Crowd dressed their wolf of a comedy up in trite sheep’s clothing or not. It’s definitely possible. They might be playing with the form or expectations or whathaveyou. It could also be one of those situations where maybe one writer in the room is completely brilliant and tosses out all the best lines. Who knows? You also can’t discount the performances by O’Dowd, Ayoade, Parkinson and their co-workers and bosses. These people sell the joke and the goofiness and even revel in it when appropriate. O’Dowd carries himself perfectly as a man who acts like he’s better than normal people but also really wants to fit in with them. Ayoade doesn’t care about fitting in. He lives with his mom, sports a child’s backpack and runs like he’s still in kindergarten, but he’s also quite smart. Meanwhile, Parkinson has such a way about her. She’s smart and conniving and understands people, but never really utilizes any of those skills to improve her station for very long in life. Gnarled toe episode aside, I think she’s also got a kind of sex appeal that only comes from funny, confident (and possibly only) British women who aren’t afraid to really go for that gag.

In addition to the people being well thought out and put together, I also find myself fascinated by the sets, specifically the IT department’s subterranean headquarters. As I said above, there’s all kinds of art, comics, toys, games and tech strewn about, but to make the “what’s that?” game even more entertaining, things move around the set. The sets also seem to get a big change-up between series’ which reminds me of my days working at Wizard. I wound up being in a lot of different offices, but I had a lot of fun decorating each one with pages ripped out of comics, drawings from friends, magazine ads, posters and a small army of action figures displayed on the desk. Even Jen’s not-geeky office evolved from a dank closet to a pretty normal looking business office (with it’s fair share of art and what not on the walls too). There’s a lot to be said about a set that looks so real and can also be shot from a series of different angels. Sometimes it took me a while to figure out where the heck they were in that big space.

As I mentioned, the first four series’ of the show can be found on Netflix Instant and there’s only six eps per series, so check it out won’t be a huge time suck. I think you’ll enjoy it if you can get pass some dumb, silly jokes. It’s worth it to get to the genius ones and I say that as a person who despises slogging through bad episodes to get to the good stuff. There’s lots of goodness in the first few episodes, it just gets way gooder as it progresses.

Zen And The Art Of Euchre

Back in grade school my dad, a friend, his dad and I went on a camping trip. Among other things–listening to Cheech & Chong, hiking and cooking over a campfire–they tried teaching me a card game called euchre. I wasn’t very interested at the time, so the game’s complicated hierarchy of trump and whatever-the-heck a bower was went over my head. I think I grasped enough to play for a little while, but most of the knowledge skipped away by the next day. Soon enough I was in high school though and, among my group of friends, euchre was the way to pass the time during lunch. I soon picked the game up and got the hang of it to the point where four of us would sit in pre-ordained seats (two on each side of the end of a lunch table), toss out that year’s deck of cards and play almost on autopilot while talking about who had a test coming up or girl problems or music. You’ve never seen a dirtier, grosser or more bent-in-half deck of cards in your life by the end of the school year thanks to hundreds of games and lunches.

It might seem strange to play a game that you don’t have to pay attention to, but I think we all found it kind of calming. No matter what kind of chaos was going on around us either at school or in our personal lives, I think the rules and structure of the game balanced out with some order. Everyone can use a little order, right?

I guess is a Midwest thing, though because, I’ve never met anyone from a state other than Ohio, Michigan or Indiana who knows how to play the game. One night during my Freshman year of college I sat around with some friends–two of whom were from Ohio even–and tried teaching them the game to no avail. Either I was explaining it poorly (very possible, though liquor was definitely not involved, as some of you might be thinking) or they just didn’t care, whatever the reason, we quit and played something else. I haven’t bothered teaching anyone since then. After nearly 10 years of no euchre I ordered a video game version for my computer earlier this year and recently downloaded the Euchre Online app for my iPhone (I chose that one because it’s free). I still find myself sitting here, mindlessly playing euchre after a long day of baby-watching, work, cooking and doing dishes. It’s a great way to decompress.

The post could easily end here, but I’m going to attempt to explain how the game is played. If you’re interested, hit the jump! Continue reading Zen And The Art Of Euchre

A Few Thoughts On The DC Relaunch, Comic Commercials & Digital Comics

There’s been a lot of talk t few weeks about DC Comics’ decision to relaunch and reboot all their major characters starting in September. My initial reaction to this was highly negative. “I’m too old for this shit” essentially. A whole new continuity to learn? No thanks. Then I got over my continuity bias and started looking at things a little differently. Some of these books actually look pretty interesting. Decluttering continuity isn’t always a bad thing and really mixing up the characters will hopefully result in some fun, new stories (like Martian Manhunter joining Stormwatch and being part of the DCU). The goal for this relaunch seems to be getting new readers by either appealing to a potential reader’s (not just comic fans, but anyone) genre of preference (everything from big time superheroes and westerns to horror and sci-fi comics have been announced) or appealing to comic readers in the know by tossing out juicy names like Geoff Johns, Jim Lee and Grant Morrison. I’ve read a lot of talk about how some creative teams and projects seem doomed to failure, but my general thought process right now is “Let’s wait and see.” September is pretty far away after all.

The other–and I think larger and potentially more important–announcement to come out of the reboot is the fact that all of these new comics will be available in a digital format the same day that they’re available in comic shops (a practice dubbed day-and-date on the nets). I know other companies have done this already, like Archie, but to see one of the big two companies doing so will be very interesting. I’m assuming this digital venture is an effort to get normal people to know about this relaunch and comics in general. You like the new Green Lantern movie? Check out the comics on your iPad!

Last week, Bleeding Cool posted a rumor that DC might actually be creating commercials to attract an audience. As I’ve mentioned a few times before, I am in complete favor of this practice. Getting the word out to people about how easy it can be to read your company’s comics could be a huge boon right now. There’s lots of theories as to why the general public doesn’t read comics: they don’t know comics exist, there’s no comic shop nearby, they don’t care, they’ve got other entertainment to keep them busy, etc. Commercials would go a long way to helping a few of those problems while digital distribution would deal with another. The necessity of getting those commercials in front of a wide variety of people is also important. Is there a western on TV? Try and get your western comic advertised in that time slot. Hey, WB has the money to try, right? I would also try and get the commercials in front of or behind some podcasts to reach out to early adopters of tech products (Diggnation, Totally Rad Show, that kind of thing).

Overall, I love the idea of digital comics. Last year I wrote a post about how much I enjoy the GIT Marvel comic book DVDs. These are discs with simple PDF versions of every comic from a particular character or book from his first appearance to the then-most recent (circa 2005). I’m now the proud owner of four of these: Avengers, Iron Man, Fantastic Four/Silver Surfer and Ghost Rider. I’ll probably never have time to read through all those comics, but I like the fact that I could if I wanted to. Anyway, being cheap, I’m a fan of getting a lot of comics for not a lot of money. As such, the idea of paying a couple bucks per digital comic just doesn’t excite me very much (not having an iPad also kind of puts the kibosh on that I guess).

So, is there a digital set-up that I would like aside from DVDs? Yeah, I’ve actually long hoped for a kind of comic book subscription service. This could be something through a particular comic company or maybe even a comic shop (I don’t know how that would work, but you get the idea) where you pay one flat fee and have access to all kinds of comics. I personally don’t need to keep the digital versions, so assuming I could read them easily on my computer/tablet/future-goggles, I’d be happy. At this point, I’m done being a comic book collector and just want to read stories. If it’s something I really do like, I’ll probably pick up or Swap for the trade.

Also last week, Brigid Alverson over at Robot 6 asked “Would you buy a digital comic book subscription?” My initial answer was “Definitely,” but then I read on and the piece set up a slightly different scenario than I imagined. Essentially, this idea would be to pay a yearly fee for one particular book, like getting a mail-away sub back in the day. I would be less inclined to get in on something like this for the exact reasons brought up in the piece: the inability of comic people to hit deadlines. If I’m getting less than 12 comics for my sub, but I’m still paying for all 12? Not cool. But it would be an interesting step. Maybe if the overarching subscription system wasn’t available, there would be one for say a group of titles like Batman or X-Men.

I think this is another thing comics will have to deal with–DC specifically–if they really want to compete with/move and shake alongside TV, movies, podcasts and the like. Scheduling is super important, especially to legitimately new readers. We’ve been programmed to expect new stuff on a pretty consistent schedule as a general public, but if you really start messing with that (say something like Dark Knight) those brand new readers will absolutely find something else to go look at. Comics need to be thought of not just as a niche market aimed at collectors, but as a legit form of entertainment that can be easily digested (whether that be thanks to product availability or story accessibility).

At the end of the day, it will be interesting to see how all this plays out. As someone who doesn’t read new comics on a regular basis, I don’t feel like I have as much of a dog in the fight with this. Were I a regular buyer, I’d probably be looking at the list of new books a lot more closely, making a list of the ones I’m most interested in/seem the most important and checking that list against my comics budget. It gives me a headache even thinking about it, so I’m going to stop and go watch some TV.

Casting Internets

Sam Sarkar’s The Vault is a pretty interesting book, check out the story I did on it over at CBR. Same goes for All Nighter, Mysterious Ways and Shinku.

I also did some goodness for Marvel.com about the upcoming Black Panther Point 1 issue!

The hilarious and awesome Rob Bricken of Topless Robot fame did an excellent FAQ based on the never-to-air Wonder Woman pilot.

In the last year, I’ve discovered I’m a big fan of gin, so Esquire‘s Summer Gin Guide was quite informative.

I thought John C Abell’s post on Wired about how eBooks are falling short right now was a fun read.

Ed Brubaker’s Criminal has never really lit me up, but his recent interview with Tom Spurgeon definitely has me curious about this new mini.

I’m linking to my buddy Ben‘s post about Batman being the worst JLAer not only because he name checked me in it, but also because it’s a convincing argument.

This might be a little creepy, but I actually wished I had these kinds of video glasses when I worked in the city because, as David Cross said, when walking the streets of NYC you’re constantly deciding whether to look at the most beautiful woman in the world or the craziest guy in the world. I also would have settled for simple camera glasses. (via Wired)

Anyone interested in comics, regardless of what kind, should be reading Jim Shooter’s blog. It’s fascinating. Take the one about the origin of the Dark Phoenix Saga as an example. I love this kind of behind the scenes stuff.

Speaking of behind the scenes comic book stuff, check out Ron Marz’s latest CBR column where he discusses what went into his decision to leave Witchblade. If you just thought “Pfft, it’s Witchblade, who cares?” I recommend checking out the first trade, it’s good stuff.

Wow, Jimmy Page came out to reprise his role as session guitar player for Donovan’s Sunshine Superman in London. I hope someone recorded it. (via Rolling Stone)

The Red Hot Chili Peppers will have a new album out on August 30th called I’m With You with new guitar player Josh Klinghoffer. Their most recent records have been musically amazing, but not necessarily the most interesting records. Hopefully this one brings back more of the funk. (via Rolling Stone)

I’ve never been so interested in a headline and then immediately worried by a subhed as I was with this Rolling Stone.com example: JACK WHITE MAY RECORD MUSIC FOR ‘SCHOOLBOYS IN DISGRACE’ MOVIE Film version of Kings concept album is being developed by Bobcat Goldthwait.

Dig this crazy skate park designed like a pinball machine! (via Wired)

Kinect Star Wars looks exactly how I want it to. Can’t wait.

Speaking of lovely time wasting video games, Spider-Man: Edge of Time sounds pretty rad too. The fact that it’s written by Peter David is awesome. I’ve still got to get my hands on Shattered Dimension, but have plenty to keep me busy until the used price drops a little lower. (via CBR)

I’ve listened to and really enjoyed Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi records in the past (she’s an amazing vocalist), so I’m happy to see their new band Tedeschi Trucks Band got a good review for their first record on Rolling Stone.

Music Musings: MP3s, iPods and Clouds Oh My

I’m not what you’d call an early adopter. Of anything. That’s usually because I’m cheap and don’t want to spend my money on the latest, expensive gadget around. I’ve been around long enough to read about bugs in first round electronics and I’ve seen enough formats disappear (tapes, laser discs, minidiscs, VHS and HD DVD). I worry about buying the wrong thing and then getting stuck with it. So, I usually hang back in the cut. It was like that with the iPod. A lot of people had them when I was in college (2001-2005) though it took me a while to identify those now ubiquitous white cords protruding from hats and long hair actually were. They were new at the time and I didn’t really know about them or what they could do.

It wasn’t until I graduated and bought my first Apple computer that I realized the potential of iTunes and digital music. I know there’s a loss in quality when you rip a CD and compress the sound files down to an MP3, but I don’t think my ears are good enough to know the difference. Besides, the ability to have all my songs in one place in a kind of juke box was just so revelatory. I began the long process of ripping all my music which spilled out into my first real job where I spent all day at a computer and often had the disc drive whirring away as I worked. The problem, of course, was that I didn’t have any way to listen to this stuff when I wasn’t at my desk or in my room at home because I didn’t have an iPod. Sure I transferred files from work to home just to keep things complete, but it’s not really the same.

For my birthday that year (this would be early 2006 I think) my parents surprised me with a brand new, shiny 30 GB black iPod.  That seemed like almost limitless space and I was finally able to have all of my music in one place! I transferred everything from my personal computer and my work computer to it and that little device’s potential really blew me away. With more space you could theoretically put whole band catalogs or even movies and TV on these things, though why would you want to watch something on such small screen?

But, as these things go and my music collection increased (I buy a lot of used CDs at flea markets, garage sales and even comic shows, plus those Amazon $5 digital album deals) and about a year ago, I realized my iPod was full. I went through and deleted some things I didn’t really listen to anymore and most of the free compilations I got from my now-closed local record store, but it wasn’t enough. It’s not too big of a deal because I’m almost always near my computer (now a MacBook laptop), which holds the music not on my iPod. So, if I’m working at the coffee shop and want to listen to something, I can because I’ve got my computer and iPod. But, that means I don’t have access to a lot of the music I’ve purchased in the last few years to listen to if I’m out and about or in my car. I had an FM transmitter that was always kind of crappy that finally junked out recently. That’s what I get for only paying $15 for it though.

So, I’d been thinking about getting a new iPod lately, one with over twice the memory as the one I’ve got. That should hold me for another few years right? Then I started hearing about the cloud and was intrigued. If all my music could live in the internet (or more accurately be copied there) I wouldn’t need to go with the clunkier 80 GB, I could even go for something sleek and sexy (and app-friendly) like an iPod Touch or possibly an iPhone now that they’re on Verizon. My complaint with both those pieces of equipment was how little memory they had, but if I can just download an app that takes up hardly any space and have access to all my music? That’s a brand new revelation. I don’t even mind paying a yearly fee just for that. I don’t care about pictures or files or any of the other cloud stuff. For me it’s all about the tunes.

Of course, then it comes down to access. There’s no problem when using a computer obviously because most of the places I go have WIFI. I’m nowhere near an expert on smart phones or the WIFI-enabled iPod Touch (our Verizon “smart phones” are close to stupid and failing as I type), but my concern would be their ability to stay in contact with the servers so I can listen to my music in the car or while hiking or what not. I don’t really hike, but it’s a good example, let’s say more realistically that I’m in some comic shop’s dingy basement looking through books. Phones seem to have this nailed for the most part, which might actually play into our upcoming phone plan decisions (Verizon’s getting expensive and taking away a lot of the perks they used to have). But I don’t know how it would work with an iPod Touch say, in the car. Something to think about.

Regardless, I’m excited. I still like to purchase physical CDs when possible, but have moved into the digital world a little more thanks to those can’t-be-beat $5 Amazon deals. I know some people decry the digital revolution, but the truth of the matter is that physical carriers of information and entertainment (CDs, DVDs, books, comics) are most likely on their way out to join laser and mini discs in the great media graveyard in the sky (and landfills). It’s sad for some, a non-issue for others and frankly it doesn’t matter unless the next generation decides to go old school and collect dusty old books and VHS tapes for some reason. For me, as long as the quality is maintained, I don’t generally care. If I can transfer all my DVDs to some cloud and not have to keep huge binders or shelves in my house, I think I’d be cool with that. I’d probably still keep them in storage just in case, and maybe visit them for old time’s sake, but they won’t be my main source of music or movie entertainment. Books are a different story, but that’s a whole separate post.

Wilcats 3.0 Trade Post: Year One & Two

WILDCATS 3.0 YEAR ONE (Wildstorm/DC)
Written by Joe Casey, drawn by Dustin Nguyen
Collects Wildcats 3.0 #1-12
WILDCATS 3.0 YEAR TWO (Wildstorm/DC)
Written by Joe Casey, drawn by Dustin Nguyen, Sean Phillips, Pascal Ferry & Duncan Rouleau
Collects Wildcats 3.0 #13-24
Wildcats 3.0 is kind of a tough nut to crack. If you’re a scattershot WildCats fan like myself (in order to read the James Robinson and Alan Moore stuff, I read everything up to that point and then almost everything after 3.0) it might be a little confusing (you’ve got Grifter, a changed Spartan and a little bit of Zealot in addition to lots of other new characters). Essentially, I missed all of the second volume, so I have no idea where all the other characters are and aside from the ones I already mentioned, Ladytron and Emp, no one else is mentioned (nor are any other WildStorm characters for that matter).

The idea behind the book is that Spartan took over the Halo Corp from Emp and has decided to make it this huge, privately owned conglomerate whose main goal is to make the world a better place. It starts with batteries that never die and go on to cars that don’t need gas. Essentially, a good chunk of this book is corporate melodrama in the vein of an Aaron Sorkin behind-the-scenes TV show that happens to be set in a world with superheroes. It’s a really interesting take on the characters and the world that only seems to have been referenced a little since then (I remember Halo batteries being a hot commodity in the post-apocalyptic world of WildStorm leading up to the imprints cancellation, but also doesn’t take full advantage of the world it’s set in (like Sleeper did). This volume also just kind of ends without tying up too many loose ends. Since I wasn’t paying attention when these issues were coming out, I have no idea if the book’s end was performance based or an effort to move into other territories. I have read Wildcats: Nemesis which followed this series and I remember liking but don’t know how it all fits together. I’m going to flip through that, Captain Atom: Armageddon and Coup d’Etat again to get a better idea.

It’s too bad, really, because Casey really had some interesting ideas going on here. I think one of the problems with WildStorm was that they had all of these ground breaking stories written by excellent creators in books like Wildcats, Authority and Planetary, but they were still trying to keep everything together in a cohesive universe, which is difficult to do when one book is trying to change the world through a company and another through superhero actions. Sometimes combining the groundbreaking and the cohesive don’t always work.

You might be able to tell by this meandering review that I’m not quite sure what to make of this book. I liked it while I was reading it, but the ending was a bit strange and left me kind of flat. Making matters worse is that, it felt like there was a lot of wheelspinning in the first volume that does not play out at all by the end of the book. There’s this dude who’s an accountant that also has some hidden killing abilities. We never find out where these abilities came from. We also never really find out why we’re supposed to care about his former partner who had a lot of personal problems working for Spartan and having his company sold out from under him. So what if the dude wound up being in charge of a front for assassins if it’s never mentioned in the second volume? I had to read this annoying loudmouth for ISSUES and for what?

I’m also not completely sold on a lot of the new characters in this story. You’ve got this secret agent named Wax who bangs his bosses wife while under hypnosis and then makes her forget it, a spook named C.C. Rendozzo who’s supposed to be a pretty huge badass, but doesn’t do a whole lot, an incredibly annoying gangster hacker and a pair of BDSM killers who aren’t explained nor are they all that interesting. I’m sure I’m missing a lot by not having read the second volume, but it also seems like a more complete story would have that information slipped in here and there.

On the other hand, there were definitely elements I loved. Casey went into brand new territory as far as I know with the corporate angle, I just wish I could have seen where it was all leading. Casey also took one of the WildStorm’s biggest badasses, Grifter, and put him in a wheelchair which didn’t make him any less dangerous. I like seeing characters out of their element, but still figuring out a way to do what they do, and without giving too much away, he certainly does. There’s even a solid amount of action and pacing at the end of the second volume that’s a joy to read as GrifterTron and some of his new friends lay siege on the Coda warrior women to save Zealot.

Reading these two volumes reminded me a lot of Ex Machina. Both books take superhero elements but are more about other kinds of drama (corporate and political respectively), both involve lead characters (Spartan and Mitchell) seemingly with humanity’s best interest in mind and both have weak endings. Unlike with Ex Machina, though, I’m definitely keeping these books in my collection. I still have that collecting mentality when it comes to WildStorm U trades. I don’t need to keep them all out on a shelf, but I like to keep them. It’s kind of appealing the idea that most of this universe, from beginning to the-end-for-now is collected and can be read. I’d like to do a reading that’s in chronological order somewhere down the line. Like, maybe when the kid goes to college.