Sunday, June 15, 2014

A Sunday Review

Here are reviews of the DCBS comic books that I've gotten around to reading and reviewing, sorted by the original shipping date:
  • May 7th
  • Aquaman and the Others #2 - I have issues with the team calmly talking and joking as they fall. Amusing, but it didn't really work for me. So, the team loses the plane, then Aquaman gets them another vehicle... and they lose that too. Meanwhile, Kahina's sister is getting a nasty introduction to the bad guys. Not the best I've seen.
  • Justice League 3000 #6 - Yay, go Hal! There's a lot of nasty going on in this book, so I wonder when/if it will ever end.
  • Earth 2 #23 - Lois Tornado is a pretty good character. Seeing her face off against Superman is interesting. Seeing him start to remember himself is even better.
  • Green Lantern #31 - So the bad guys that we (the audience) learned about months ago (as least it seems like it) finally show their hands... and promptly get their butts kicked? *sigh* I expect so much more from this book.
  • Scooby-Doo Team-Up #4 - This was consistently hilarious with multiple in-jokes and slapstick. The bit about Robin's voice was enough to get a belly-laugh out of me, pretty rare.
  • FCBD
  • FCBD: Magic Wind - Very disjointed story with very nice artwork.
  • FCBD: Sherwood Texas/Boondock Saints Double Feature - The first story, Sherwood, seemed mildly amusing with some potential. I'm not sure what Boondock Saints was trying to be, but it certainly didn't get my interest.
  • FCBD: Grimm Fairy Tales #0 - This was far better than I expected it to be. I still have an issue with what the women wear (and don't wear) in this company's books, but the stories are actually halfway decent.
  • FCBD: Bleeding Cool Magazine - Lots of words! This is a decent sampler of the magazine, which is itself a good overview of the industry.
  • FCBD: Les Miserables: Fall of Fantine - I haven't ever watched or read Les Miserables, although I'm familiar with the story. That said, I found myself drawn into this version right away. It was surprisingly compelling, enough that I'm tempted to get the full version.
  • FCBD: Rise of the Magi - Promising start. The usual tale of a guy who wants to be more than fate has apparently allotted for him. Flying carpets are a nice touch.
  • FCBD: Transformers vs G.I. Joe - Very fun 60's style artwork that almost doesn't work. That was Snake Eyes like I'd never seen him, but then... well, this was pretty strange all over.

Fortean Times #312
Fortean Times #312 (April 2014). A nice spooky cover with an interesting cover article to go with it. This wasn't a tradition I was aware of, but it makes perfect sense and is fascinating to read about. The attempts to tie it in with the Wild Hunt seem mildly forced, but I guess I see the potential connections. Overall, this is the kind of stuff I read Fortean Times to learn about.

Another article features the reputation of doctors throughout the ages. In short, for a lot of history, doctors were very much hated, and lots of people really did think the cure was too often worse than the disease. Another article questions the theories about the origin of our moon. Lots of theories, some consensus, but no certainty.

There's a feature article on Hugo Chavez and the strange cult of personality that still clings to him even after his death. The article is careful to point out how disastrous some of his policies have been for Venezuela, but focuses much more on the beliefs of people that he's some sort of deity. There's also a little piece on his belief that Americans had somehow given him the cancer that eventually killed him.

The First Forteans looks deeper into Eric Frank Russell's history, this time getting into his writings. I found myself wanting to read Wasp a little. Maybe I'll seek some of his stuff out.

Strangedays starts with the theft of the blood of a Pope and dogs who lick frogs to get high. It continued with stories of people who received transplants getting more than just an organ, people with strange, um, urges, people who survived execution and people who survived being lost at sea.

Science looks at loopholes in established facts, starting with the Fluid Space Drive. It all sounds like drivel to me, but if somebody can make it work, more power to them. Literally. Ghostwatch covers the writings and beliefs of recently deceased Colin Wilson. Archaeology has an ancient tablet about a flood, an ancient painting showing a volcano and sacred sites being threatened by development. Classical Corner is about singing statues. Alien Zoo has a picture of a big ol' lavendar crab, more on freshwater dolphins and a fascinating newspaper whopper about a big bird.

UFO Files looks at intelligence and counter-intelligence that fogs up the search for The Truth. There's also bits on other countries' documents on UFOs and a town where sightings happened in the 1960s and 70s. The casebook is about similarities between near death experiences and alien abduction stories.

Forum has an article about the British government's desire to censor the internet, including "esoteric" items, which would include just about everything covered by Fortean Times. Such censorship won't go over well with the nerdish public, but it may be possible to convince the general public that it's "for the children" and put such a fascist thing in place.

Another Forum article is about death from above, including the very real danger posed by solar storms. I'm not really sure what the article is trying to say, as the writer makes a point of making fun of people who panic at end-of-the-world scenarios then seems miffed that no one is panicking at the possibility of solar storms. Um, ok.

Reviews actually features a book I've read for once, with the reviewer finding Zealot by Reza Aslan to be worth the read, as did I. It got nine out of 10 for its rating. I giggled as I read a review of a book that only earned a three out of ten... the points were scathing but backed up by specific details of why the reviewer was disappointed. I also found the review of the recent Robocop reboot to be informative.

The letters were good, particularly the response to whether or not it's a good idea to dispose of a body in quicklime (short answer: no). Um. Ok. The letter about knots in anchor cables and chains made me think Aquaman was being an a-hole. There's a plot device for an Aquaman writer! Aquaman ties the anchor chain into a knot to prevent some ship from doing something.

The Fortean Traveller goes to the salt mines of Krakow, which I've read about many times before. This has a few good photos that make me happy to see, but I'm not sure you could get me into those underground vaults willingly. Illustrated Police News covers the Manchester Ghost of 1869, which sadly has no known conclusion. And Phenomenomix continues the story of WB Yeats. Another fun issue.