Just for Kicks

Everyone needs a laugh once in a while...It's Genetic by Kyle Baker


Countdown to Birds of Prey: Day 80

80 more days until the DVD release of BIRDS OF PREY The Complete Series!!!

Despite any mention you may read on the web (including a review by some moron on Amazon of the DVD set THAT HASN'T EVEN BEEN RELEASED YET WTF!?) RACHEL SKARSTEN does not portray Black Canary in BIRDS OF PREY. She does portray Dinah Lance (known early in the series as Dinah Redmond). But this takes place on an alternate earth known as fictional, so you'll just have to get over it. Yeah, geeky fanboys had problems with this show from the beginning, and most of those problems had nothing to do with the quality of the writing or the acting...

It's not like my comic, WAAHHH!!!

Here's a short blurb and Q&A theWB did with Rachel back in 2002 leading up to the series premiere:

For 17-year-old Rachel Skarsten, joining Birds of Prey was the chance of a lifetime. Yet once upon a time, acting was not her career of choice. "Growing up, I studied hard-core ballet with the Royal Academy of Dance.Then I discovered [ice] hockey, which I love," explains the native Canadian. And now? "Moving out on my own [the show shoots in Los Angeles] is a little scary," admits Skarsten. "I'll probably have to get a cat or something."

My character is: "The damsel in distress. She is very naive and a little insecure. I suspect I'll be able to kick some 'behind' soon. Of course, it will just look like me. Those stunt girls make me look so good, but really all I do is grunt and throw fake punches."

To do Dinah justice I had to: "Lose the nose ring. They wouldn't let me keep it because Dinah is not that cool - yet."

My biggest fear is: "That I'm going to let the comic book's fans down. This book has a really strong cult following. Online they know more about me than I know about me."

Pre-Order Birds of Prey: The Complete Series from Amazon.com


Who is Wonder Woman?

You read a lot about writers saying that Wonder Woman is a hard character to write. Because she's supposed to be this ultimate warrior, but she's also supposed to be a deliverer of peace. And it's hard to make the two concepts work together. But I think Gail Simone gets it.

written by Gail Simone; art by Bernard Chang and Jon Holdridge

Diana has the ability to, and if need be will, beat your ass. But she'd rather not if there's any other option. She is determined to find a solution that leads to peace.
She could've beaten Procanon Kaa into submission, but she wanted the ending to be mutually peaceful and not just "Nyah, nyah, I kicked your butt!"

I've been reading Wonder Woman for over 30 years. And I've always enjoyed the super-hero stories to the "Ambassador of Peace" blah that's been shoehorned in since the 80s.
Gail gives me both and makes it work. I'm loving this.

PS - I've read a lot of online grumbling about how "bad" Bernard Chang's art is. I'm like "WTF?" I think the art on these past 2 issues has been great. True, he may not draw Diana as classically beautiful as Terry Dodson, but it's not like she's beastly by any stretch of the imagination. I don't know. Maybe I'm just stupid...


Countdown to Birds of Prey: Day 85

85 more days until the DVD release of BIRDS OF PREY The Complete Series!!!

DINA MEYER portrayed Barbara Gordon aka Oracle in the 13-episode series. Barbara was the leader of the Birds and the glue that held them together. She was also formerly Batman's partner Batgirl, until the Joker shot her through the spine, leaving her confined to a wheelchair. As Oracle, Barbara kept a cyber-eye on the streets of New Gotham and dispatched her operatives to battle crime.

Here's a short blurb and Q&A theWB did with Dina back in 2002 leading up to the series premiere:
Batman fans will tell you that Dina Meyer's character - the niece of Commissioner Gordon who moonlighted as Batgirl - is the one to watch this fall. To get into tough-chick mode, Meyer had to do some serious research. "People think I'm tough, but I'm really warm and fuzzy," admits the actress.

My character Oracle is: "Very complex. Oracle is a hacker who controls everything from the clocktower. The other two girls are her muscle."

Oracle's greatest challenge is: "Not being able to use her body. She went from being a young, eager crime fighter to a woman who has to sit on her instincts - literally."

When it comes to doing Birds of Prey justice, I have: "A lot to learn. I was never really a big comic book person. I was a real girly girl. I liked Wonder Woman because of the cool outfits and bracelets."

Oracle's greatest secret weapon is: "Stick fighting. Evidently, she is quite adept at escrima. That's the Filipino art of stick fighting. Other than that, we just don't know...yet."

Pre-Order Birds of Prey: The Complete Series from Amazon.com


Project Superpowers: The Flame and Flame Girl

Time for some more PROJECT SUPERPOWERS back stories. 'Cause I know you love them so. LOL!

This time you get a two-fer. Mainly due to the fact that the story surrounding the origin of The Flame from THE FLAME #1 was so blah, I decided to just stitch the first 3 pages together into a "stand alone" origin. A question that is unanswered (either in this mini-origin, or the full story) is how he got the name Gary Preston. Oh well. Deal with it. Okay, here t'is:

(Summer 1940)

In PROJECT SUPERPOWERS #2, we saw The Flame being all weepy-eyed about "Linda."
The Linda in question is Linda Dale, girlfriend to Gary Preston. In the following story, we see how Linda acquired her powers and became FLAME GIRL! (Dated two months before ALL STAR COMICS #8, by the way...)


(October 1941)

You can download THE FLAME #1, WONDERWORLD COMICS #30 and lots of other awesome golden-age goodness from Golden Age Comics Downloads!


Batman: Gotham Knight - preview

DC Comics, Warner Premiere, Warner Home Video and Warner Bros. Animation have collaborated to create a unique Batman experience in Batman: Gotham Knight. The all-new, original movie will arrive July 8, 2008 on DVD and Blu-ray Disc.
A cross section of distinguished creators, award winning producers, and acclaimed writers weave six interlocking stories that reveal Bruce Wayne’s journey from BATMAN BEGINS to THE DARK KNIGHT, each with stylish art from some of the world’s most revered animation visionaries.
Batman: Gotham Knight will be available on DVD for $19.98 SRP. There will also be a 2-disc Special Edition DVD available for $29.98 SRP which contains additional bonus features. All the content from the 2-disc Special Edition DVD will be available on Blu-ray Disc for $34.99 SRP.


Titans (whatever) #1

written by Judd Winick
art by Ian Churchill & Norm Rapmund

When this book was first announced I was kind of excited. I mean, THE NEW TEEN TITANS has always been one of my all-time favorite comics. I love these characters and having them come back together was just too much to ask. Even though the previous TITANS revival kinda fell apart, I still wanted to love that one, too.
Judd Winick wasn't really a stumbling block for me. I know a lot of people on the internet seem to hate him, but he's written some good stuff (GREEN ARROW/BLACK CANARY, the first couple years of THE OUTSIDERS) along with the bad (TITANS/YOUNG JUSTICE: GRADUATION DAY, TITANS EAST SPECTACULAR). So, I wasn't too worried.
Ian Churchill's art on the other hand had me a little trepidatious. I just don't get it most of the time. He can draw a pretty man on occassion, but on the whole it just does nothing for me. But I read the interviews, and Winick seemed like he was excited and got the group. So I thought it might me all right.
I guess I was kinda wrong. This book just doesn't make any sense. I could go into more detail, but Troy Brownfield over at Newsarama has pretty much taken all the words out of my mouth.
Go read his review and then come on back. I'll wait.

Hmm, hmmm. La la la la...

Oh, hi! Okay: First of all, I don't hate it quite that much. But it's close.
What is the timeline on this thing? Are they all attacked at once? They couldn't get ahold of Dick to let him know what was happening, because his comm was cut while he was fighting. And how long was his fight that they got ahold of Batman and he got to Dick before Dick was done? Or did the other attacks happen before Dick's? And how did they get away.
Especially Donna. She was out in space with Kyle, gets attacked by some tentacle thing, and then has time to get free, come back to earth and change clothes. All the while that Dick is running around with glass sticking out of his neck. !!??? And where did Kyle go? He was a Titan once. He did get attacked same time as Donna. Were they just like "Okay, see ya later!" !!???
About the only thing I didn't hate that most people seem to have a problem with is the return of Trigon. I love him. I hope he turns out to be cool. But really, this should have been a lot more Raven oriented for Trigon's return...
All in all, there were some highlights in the artwork :). However if these weren't my favorite characters, I probably wouldn't be back. But I have to keep reading to see if maybe it gets better. Please.

And now for something completely different: Here's a review of the book from an alternate universe. I really, truly cannot believe we read the same book. I so wish I could love it as much as this guy did.

Countdown to Birds of Prey: Day 93

It's been a long 5-year wait...but in just over three months, the Birds of Prey TV series will finally be on DVD!!! Yay! I'm so excited!!

For anyone who may have missed it, here's a description of the show:

On a terrible night seven years in the past, the Joker attacks the two women at the center of Batman's life: Catwoman and Barbara Gordon, who fought at Batman's side as Batgirl. With Catwoman dead, Batman mysteriously disappears from New Gotham. Barbara, now confined to a wheelchair, redefines herself with a complicated double life: by day, she is a teacher of computer sciences, but by night, she is "Oracle," a master of cybernetics and weapons design, who monitors the activities of New Gotham's criminals from her secret lair in the city's Clocktower.

Barbara takes under her wing the secret daughter of Catwoman and Batman, young Helena Kyle. Helena has inherited Batman's strong sense of justice, along with Catwoman's meta-human abilities. Although she longs for a normal life, she quickly grows into the fierce and beautiful "Huntress." The pull between good and evil is strong within her, and Barbara knows she must guide Helena carefully.

Into the lives of these two remarkable women comes an innocent teenage girl named Dinah who is drawn to the Clocktower by powerful, haunting visions. Unsure of her background, but impressed by her budding meta-human powers, the two crime-fighters take Dinah in, and the trio is complete. They are now the "Birds of Prey."

And here's a little video clip. It's 1.36 MB, so it might take a minute to load. And the quality is kinda iffy, but it's what I've got to share! Enjoy it! (You need Quicktime)

And, oh yeah, no; I'm not going to do this daily. I just wanted to have some fun with it. I'll probably bring it up a couple times a week, tho. LOL!

Wonder Woman Logo Study

For awhile I've wanted to do a collection of all the various logos that Wonder Woman has had through her 67-year history. Somehow I've never gotton around to it (it's called "lazy"). But now letterer/designer Todd Klein has beat me to it with a study of the logos with insightful commentary!! Plus a look at a few logos that didn't make the cut!Check out the articles here:
Logo Study: WONDER WOMAN part 1
Logo Study: WONDER WOMAN part 2
Logo Study: WONDER WOMAN part 3
Logo Study: WONDER WOMAN part 4
Logo Study: WONDER WOMAN part 5 (final)


Project Superpowers: The Fighting Yank

Because I love Golden Age comics, the announcement of PROJECT SUPERPOWERS really excited me. And I started throwing up stories from the golden age that featured the characters that were appearing in PS.
But somehow I managed to completely ignore the one character who has basically been the star of the show so far: The Fighting Yank. He's the one that starts the whole thing. I don't know how I came to ignore him, but now I'm making it right.
Here is the first appearance and secret origin of The Fighting Yank! Straight from 1941's STARTLING COMICS #10!
Thrill to the adventure that leads Bruce Carter III into the startling life of a superhero!
Learn how Bruce Carter's ancestor met his gruesome fate!
See Bruce's fiancée Joan learn his secret identity in his first outing!!
It all starts now!!

(September 1941)
written by Richard Hughes; art by Jon Blummer

You can download STARTLING COMICS #10 (scanned from microfiche) and lots of other awesome golden-age goodness from Golden Age Comics Downloads!