Monday, January 31, 2011

Manic Monday--Healthsville, U.S.A.!

Welcome back to Physical Fitness Day at Slay Monstrobot!!

You know, campers, I'll bet that you can't guess the healthiest place in America? Go ahead, try.

The answer??

Dude, it's Dayton, Ohio (45401). Those cats have all the answers!!

Let us bow to our ubermensch overlords from Amazing Spider-Man #178 (1978).

Manic Monday--Tall Up, Bro!!

Welcome back to Physical Fitness Day here at Slay Monstrobot!!

You know, all of those Charles Atlas-type ads seems to want you to get bigger--more muscles--or smaller--lose weight instantly!!

Yet most of those ads have ignored the single most important physical need in the American populace:

Yes, you can add two to six inches in a few short weeks...and comic book ads wouldn't lie to you, would they?

Best of all--absolutely no work whatsoever seems to be required:

And if can't trust the English and the Swiss--who are, of course, renowned for their great height--whom can you trust??

Even more best of all? New slang from yesterday that you can use today to seem hip and/or fly:

Tall up, dude!!

Still, before you spring for $7.98, you might want to know that another ad in the same comic book makes the same promises...but for only 25¢!!

And still a third ad runs the price up to 35¢, for far less specific promises. Yet, they know the rad lingo:

Which to choose? Which to choose??

Click on the image below the view the ad in its fully embiggened size:

Ads from Amazing Spider-Man #196 (1979).

Manic Monday--To Heck With Charles Atlas

Welcome to Physical Fitness Day at Slay Monstrobot!!

You know the only problem with all of these exercise stuff is? The exercise!!

I mean, sure, I'd like to get back at that bully who kicked sand in my face, as well as impress the ladies.

But, man, it looks like so much work!!

Well, my indolent friends, have we got the solution for you!

We'll leave any snarky comments about "using your Hulk pump" and the accompanying growling to others this morning.

Ad from Amazing Spider-Man #197 (1979).

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Holy Crap, DC Has Gone Nuts!!

Wait a minute wait a minute.

So the Flashpoint event is going to include not only the 5-issue series itself (50 quatloos says it expands to 6, as most Geoff Johns projects end up expanding...)? There are going to be 15--yes, FIFTEEN--3 issue tie-in mini-series!! 15???? Plus "several important one shots"????

It seems almost beyond the realm of possibility that DC would have to capacity to come up with 900+ pages of material in addition to what they already publish. Plus, is it really wise to flood the market with so much excess product?

Now, before I get too upset, this post on the DC Source blog makes it sound as if maybe, just maybe, these mini-series will be taking the place of some of the regular DC titles for those months (a la what happened with the X-Titles during Age Of Apocalypse, except seemingly on a grander scale. ). "This isn't a parallel Earth. This isn't a mirror world. This is home."

While on the one hand, if true this would might sense (and at least salvage my wallet a bit). So maybe we will see, for example, The Secret Seven published in place of The Secret Six for three months.

On the other hand, Age Of Apocalypse aside, isn't it completely nuts to scrap a good chunk of your entire line of comics for "alternate universe" versions for the whole summer?? Especially when Flashpoint is by Johns and Andy Kubert, and you know damn well it will finish months late!! (Then again, maybe a 3+ month break will enable Flash's own comic to approach being on time again...)

Obviously, I should wait until more information...and the specific solicits and dates and such ...before I mouth off anymore.

But either way...Holy Moly, has DC gone completely mad??

Below is a list of the scheduled mini-series, with the fifteenth being kept a secret by DC for now...

Whatever Happened to Gotham City?


Whatever Happened to the World’s Greatest Super Villains?


Whatever Happened to the Aliens?


Whatever Happened to Science & Magic?


Whatever Happened to Europe?


Everything You Know Will Change in a Flash


Saturday, January 29, 2011

Infinite Power--Denied

Sigh...all my dreams apparently will be unfulfilled.

You may recall, a couple of weeks ago I told you about a postcard I had received, telling me I was going to be taking part in the Nielsen TV rating survey.

Yet, despite the postcard's claim that I would receive a phone call from them "in a few days," there's been nada. Bupkis. Less than bupkis. And it's been more than two weeks.

So, I guess it's not to be. Which is really too bad, because I imagine my week of deciding what TV shows America gets to watch would have gone a little something like this:


Panels cribbed from Avengers #63 (or 478), 2003.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Friday Night Fights--Desk Job Style!!

This one is gonna hurt.

Let's say you're Spider-Man, and you've been tracking the mysterious criminal mastermind who has been crossing paths with you for several issues.

And let's say you find him.

And he turns out to be the Kingpin.


Now, for those of you out there who think the Kingpin wasn't anything much until Frank Miller took him over to Daredevil, you might want to reconsider. Because as the Kingpin and his gunsels have the drop on Spidey:

Yowza, even Spacebooger would have trouble getting up after that!!

Len Wein, Ross Andru and Mike Esposito destroy some perfectly good furniture in Amazing Spider-Man #163 (1976).

Now, because he dares to have a life, Spacebooger will not be able to open the voting until later than usual. So stop by the Friday Night Fights site later than you're accustomed to...say late Friday night or Saturday...and then vote for me, lest the Kingpin stops by and busts up your chifforobes!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

No, Mister Barnes, I Expect You To Die!

When last we checked in with the trial of Captain Bucky, artist Butch Guice unmistakeably borrowed actress Lisa Edelstein as the model for the never-before-looked-anything-like-this character of lawyer Bernie Rosenthal.

Well, this week, Guice continues to prove that there's no long-established Marvel character that he cannot make resemble whoever is on his TV at the time...this time it's evil psychologist Dr. Faustus:

Gert Frobe?? Goldfinger?? Really??

I can't decide whether I should be irked by the awkward trace job of the very first picture when you look up Gert Frobe on Google Images (at least he flipped the picture first...), or if I should be awed by the inspired casting (although, given previous portrayals of Faustus, Sebastian Cabot would have been a better choice, if you ask me). Maybe both.

Stay tuned, campers, to see what celebrity image Guice pilfers next for a Captain America story!
See if Guice can summon sufficient artistic imagination to do a close-up of a major character without basing it entirely on whatever DVD he's playing that day!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

La Più Ridicolmente Lasciando Freddo Usi Dei Poteri Ciclope--Capitolo Uno

So Cyclops, perpetually worried about the dangers of his powers...Cyclops, whose eyebeams can shatter mountains...Cyclops, the broodiest bastard on Earth...

He's using his eyebeams to cut a cake? I mean...


What do you mean you can't read it?

Let me see....Oh, sorry, I used my Italian X-Men reprint to scan that panel. Silly me! I just assumed that everyone had found Italian X-Men Annuals in the quarter bin!!

Here's the original panel for you...

Nice to know that"Hmmph!" is the same in any language!!

Panels from X-Men #4 (1964) and X-Men Gli Anno D'oro #1 (1995).

Before you ask, "gli" is the Italian article "the" used with masculine words that begin with vowels. It is NOT Glee. No, there is no Italian Glee/X-Men crossover. That would be...that would...hmmm...

Hey, somebody get me Marvel on the phone, stat!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Inglourious Basterds II--The Prequel

If you haven't seen Inglourious Basterds, you should go rent it right now. Anyway, large portions of it involve movie-making during wartime, propaganda, inserting your own messages into someone else's propaganda film, Joespeh Goebbels, and generally busting up a gorgeous movie theater.

Which bring to America's Greatest Comics #8 (1943), wherein Spy Smasher...well, just wait and see.

In theaters across America, the latest film of Spy Smasher's exploits is met with great joy:

But with considerably less joy in the "private projection room of the propaganda ministry in Berlin":

Yes, that is Joseph Goebbels and company, despairing over the effectiveness of American propaganda films.

Ah, but the Nazis have a plan: make their own Spy Smasher films that make him (and America) look like hapless losers.

But they must go to America to film this. Why?

Fair enough.

Their plan is almost stopped before it begins, as a curious cop stumbles upon the filming. Fortunately for the Nazis, he's not a bright cop:


Now, heat up some popcorn, and enjoy some scenes from the Nazi propaganda version of Spy Smasher:

Well, that would certainly boost German morale.

But the Nazi's have an even bigger goal in mind:

Yup, they're going to substitute the Nazi film for the new Spy Smasher epic (which is entitled Spy Smasher Axes Axis Spies). That will destroy American morale!!

Fortunately, Spy Smasher himself tumbles upon their plans, and boy, is he peeved!!

So, he leaps into action:

He replaces the Nazi actor...

...and busts up the filming of their final scenes!!

Unfortunately, the evil director and crew have already infiltrated the theater, and replaced the real film with the first few reels of their evil film:

How effective is this vile Nazi propaganda? Within the first few seconds, the youth of America are already doubting whether America can ever beat the Axis:

And the fake Spy Smasher, who escaped earlier, appears live and in person to drive home the message:

Well, that's it...America's doomed, right?


The real Spy Smasher arrives, and busts up the gang in the projection booth...

...swings down dramatically to the big screen...

And the we have one of the awesomest scenes ever: while the big screen continues to show a wussy Spy Smasher getting pummeled by Nazis, right in front of it we have, live, the actual Spy Smasher kicking the crap out of Nazis.

Holy moly that's great! I wish I could see this scene filmed someday...

But wait--there's more!! Spy Smasher has a plan for the ultimate victory:

Oh, he wouldn't, would he??

Ha ha, take that, you propaganda spewing National Socialists!!

Seriously: Quentin Tarantino, if you're reading this, I will give you 10 bucks if you film this story!!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Manic Monday--Yes, I Take Requests

Man, I can never tell which of my posts is going to get the most comments.

I mean, yesterday I put together a silly little post on a long forgotten Green Arrow villain, and you people went nuts.

Saranga went so far as to insist--nay, demand!--that I reveal exactly how GA defeated The Roper in his one and only appearance.

(Actually, see asked very politely, and I can never resist a lady with an English accent...go read her blog!)

So, your wish is my command. But don't blame me when this makes your head explode from excessive WTF, OK?

It seems that each time our heroes encountered the Roper, Green Arrow left him an arrow with a piece of rope attached:

Oliver is such a dingus, he won't even tell Speedy what the secret plan is.

At their final confrontation, the amazing archers are captured because Roper blinds them with glow-in-the-dark ropes. Seriously.

So it's curtains for the heroes...but there's one little transaction left to go:

What in the world is going on??

Wow, it's a good thing that when the Roper tied you up, he put you right next to that button...

Wow, it's a good thing the Roper was standing in the one exact spot he needed to be...

You're kidding, right? Your entire plan depended on A) the Roper keeping all of those pieces of rope on him; B) You and Speedy getting captured; C) Roper trussing you up on the same wall as that hidden button; D) Roper standing right in front of the doorway from whence the electromagnetic boomerang arrow would come; E) that, even though neither end of the rope you've tricked him into taken was secured to anything, it will somehow bind him helplessly just by twirling around him (again, with neither end secured--and not tied!); and F) despite being a master of ropes, the Roper will remain hogtied until the police arrive to grab him and free you. ALL of that had to go exactly right, or the plan fails.

Well, at least there's an explanation, of sorts, for A:

How convenient that Oliver Queen knows ancient Malayan rope language...and that the concept of European naming systems and secret identities are easily translated into that language!!

But did Green Arrow know the Roper's secret identity in the first place???

So...Green Arrow "knew" from before they even encountered the Roper for the first time. In other words, he let the guy commit at least 4 more major crimes, because it wasn't enough proof for court.

Uh, maybe you could have told the cops and gotten a search warrant? Followed the guy until you caught him changing into his costume? Done a background check on "Stephen Gard, wealthy philanthropist," upon whose hand you noticed rope burn?

Nah, that wouldn't be nearly as much fun as an overly complex and ridiculously unlikely plan. But hey, at least Green Arrow got to use his electromagnetic boomerang arrow!

The Roper's only and only appearance was in Adventure Comics #176 (1952), as reprinted in World's Finest #204 (1971).