Sunday, September 22, 2013

A Sunday Review

This week's movie was The Wizard of Oz in 3D. Naturally, I have seen this movie a few times. I had not seen it recently on the big screen, and since the last time I watched the movie I had absorbed a bit more trivia... so for much of the movie I concentrated on looking for those bits and pieces. I found myself giggling at stupid stuff a few times, which could only be considered normal now that I know more about it than 99 percent of the population. *ahem* The 3D was nicely done, pulling the visuals out but not eye-poppingly annoying. During a few transitions I saw disturbing blurring, but that was the only time I had an issue with the 3D. When Dorothy opened the door to Munchkinland I couldn't help myself, I said (quietly, I hope) "Oooo, Technicolor!" like Mindy in the Animaniacs. I'm still not a huge fan of the movie, and as I was walking out I spotted a young boy standing with his mother waiting for his grandmother and asked him, very politely, if he'd read the book. He was shocked that someone would talk to him in the theater but admitted, no, he hadn't read it. His mother, standing there as well said she hadn't either. I told them the book is very different and has more adventures. "Maybe we should read it together," she said to her son. Mission accomplished.

Here are reviews of the DCBS comic books that I've gotten around to reading and reviewing, sorted by the original shipping date:
  • Aug 21st
  • Trinity of Sin: Pandora #3 - Oh, that's real deep. Wasn't that the solution in Kung Fu Panda, too?
  • Green Lantern: New Guardians #23 - Not feeling the love. Or anything else. I'm burned out on lanterns of any color.
  • Batman '66 #2 - The utter silliness of this one stings. An iceberg can't be a nation, especially if it's parked in another country's harbor. Ug.
  • Arrow #10 - This one was a little too disjointed. I suppose I should have read each of the stories by themselves, because reading all three in a row was too much jumping around from story thread to story thread.
  • Batman Beyond Universe #1 - I'm not really all that interested in the Batman story, but I enjoyed the JLA tale. Even with what happened to Aquagirl, yikes. Superman in his firefighter alter ego is awesome.
  • Sergio Aragones Funnies #9 - I love his autobiographical strips, and I also liked his "origins of phrases" piece. This book is just a pleasure to read.
  • Fables #132 - I sense some annoyance on Rose's part about Brandish.
  • Grimm Fairy Tales: Oz #2 - I despise most of the covers. And, I'm sorry, but ripping up her dress further and claiming the seamstress is amazing? No. Just get some clothes on. Ug.
  • Aug 28th
  • Steed and Mrs Peel #11 - That was a very odd way to end the storyline. Wow. I'm still not entirely sure what happened.
  • Itty Bitty Hellboy #1 - Aw yeah, Art Baltazar & Franco! Ok, so I'm not entirely sure who all the characters are (although I know most of them thanks to reading a bunch of the Hellboy trades) but it's still fun. DC screwed up by canceling books by these guys. They should be doing regular Titans and JLA books.
  • Justice League #23 - I hate crossovers. So, we finally get to see the Crime Syndicate's version of Aquaman. Nifty. And the Mera appearance was... unexpected. But I still have almost no clue what this book was about.
  • Aquaman #23 - So... no answers, just a whole lot more questions. ARGH!!!
  • Doctor Who: Prisoners of Time #8 - I guess I knew it would have to be Grace, but it was still kind of strange to see her. The art did NOT live up to the story.
  • Peanuts V2 #11 - I like Beethoven... and my number is 27. I think Inkwell is a solid 13. I'm not sure what number Eric would be.

My book this week was Love Finds You in Last Chance, California by Miralee Ferrell. After her father dies Alexia is beset by trouble on the family ranch, but a handsome stranger might be the help she won't admit she needs.

Let me make this absolutely clear from the outset: I knew when I started this book that it is a Christian romance novel. I generally avoid any work of fiction that labels itself as "Christian", because I don't like being preached at and most of those novels have the characters going on ad nauseum about the love of God and opening yourself to Him. To some extent, this book had those same flaws, but it was mostly less overt than I've experienced in other Christian novels. I would expect a book set in 1877 to have some mention of religion and God simply because of the setting. But I'm afraid the method of worship seemed a little too modern to me. The language when the characters spoke about God was mostly ok, but every once in awhile someone said something that was just out of place for that era. Surprisingly, the "conversion" part of the book, in which the characters place their troubles in the hands of God, did not seem even remotely out of place. It was nearly perfect, in my opinion. The only time the book actively annoyed me with its preaching was in the final chapter or so, after all the action had taken place and the characters were planning for the future. Then I felt a little like the book was hijacked by a simplistic and over-enthusiastic missionary for a bit, interrupting the tale.

Speaking of the tale... it was a straightforward Western romance with a bit of intrigue, a red herring or two and a plot that most readers might be able to predict to the end after reading the prologue and first chapter. It was still a fun read, with characters that appealed, even if only two of them were ever fully developed as characters. I would have very much enjoyed this as a teen, looking for romance novels that weren't full of sex. As an adult, my cynicism and desire to avoid preachy fiction makes it less appealing.

This week's comic book related review is Justice League: I Am Aquaman by Kirsten Mayer, art by Andy Smith and color by Brad Vancata. Ok, I was surprised when I first heard about this one, but naturally had to get my hands on it. I like the whole concept of Aquaman inviting the Justice League to his home, and I love that Mera and Topo get to play a role. I was a little surprised to see King Shark hanging out with Black Manta, but I suppose it works well enough for the story. Yet another fun little book for an Aquaman fan to have.