Archive | Comics 101

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Cap Flies Air Gangster

I love comics. And specifically, I love old comics. And even more specifically, I love old comics I’ve never read before, because you absolutely never know what you’re gonna find. Case in point: this year at the San Diego Comic Con, I found myself trying to put together a full set of Jack Kirby’s 1970s […]

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And I Feel Fine

THOR: RAGNAROK treads a very thin line. It’s really funny; probably laugh for laugh the funniest of all the Marvel films, including James Gunn’s masterful GUARDIANS offerings and Peyton Reed’s ANT-MAN, which featured no small comedy cred with its screenplay from Adam McKay and Paul Rudd. And yet, in terms of scale and of stakes, […]

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Playing Fair, Part II

Previously, in Comics 101: Last time, we introduced you to the beginnings of one of DC Comics’ lesser lights: Terry Sloane, the Man of a Thousand Talents known as Mr. Terrific. With a less than memorable costume and not much in the way of superpowers, why did Mr. Terrific stand the test of time and […]

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Playing Fair

Some characters you like and you don’t even know why. There’s no good reason I should have liked Mr. Terrific as a kid. No super powers, a bad costume, a hopelessly old-fashioned name, and yet, for some reason, he’s always been a sentimental favorite, even though by the time I was first introduced to the […]

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He’s a Man of Wealth and Taste, Part II

For Those Who Came In Late: Last week, we introduced you to Spidey’s supreme homewrecker, Marvel’s answer to Old Scratch himself, Mephisto. We took a look at Mephisto’s first appearance in the pages of THE SILVER SURFER, and a supremely creepy Mephisto tale from John Byrne in the pages of FANTASTIC FOUR. However, the Mephisto […]

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He’s a Man of Wealth and Taste

Happy Halloween, kids! With that in mind, let’s take a look back at the scariest guy in comics, with the debut appearance of Marvel’s answer to Old Scratch himself, Mephisto. Back in 1968, Marvel Editor-in-Chief Stan Lee had finally given a solo series to his favorite creation: the Silver Surfer. Stan was looking to create […]

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Dead Man Walking

You know, some superheroes have it better than others when it comes to origins. Spider-Man was bitten by a radioactive spider; irritating, but hardly traumatic. Superman’s rocketship ride to Earth from Krypton? Maybe crippling emotionally, but hey, he was young – he adjusted. When it come to origins, nobody had it worse than the Spectre, […]

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Getting Animated

Since nothing is ever really fully discussed without a Top 10 list, let us commence with the Top 10 in Comic-Book Animation! 10. BATMAN: THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD, Warner Brothers Animation Didn’t expect to see this make the list, did you? To be honest, when the show was first announced, neither did I. But […]

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Animating Batman, Part III: Everything Old Is New Again

Previously, in COMICS 101: We’ve been taking a look at the first-rate Batman animated projects from Warner Brothers as produced in the mid-1990s. In our earlier installments, we explored the origins of the series and examined how the series handled Batman’s Rogues’ Gallery. As we begin this week, the completed series receives an unexpected shot […]

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Animating Batman, Part II

For those who came in late: Last week, we began our examination of Warner Animation’s classic 1992 animated program BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES, and its various spinoffs and descendants. We left off having just started our discussion of the series’ treatment of Batman’s Rogues’ Gallery, and so there we begin: Not every character would be […]

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Animating Batman

With this week marking its 25th anniversary, let’s take a look back at the standout Batman animated offering from Warner Brothers, the superlative 1992 classic BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES. Before ’92, action-adventure animation was all but dead on American television. Following the success of its new comedy series TINY TOON ADVENTURES, Warner Animation President Jean […]

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The Way It Began

In all of our talks in recent weeks about the Golden and Silver Ages and the early days of Marvel, we’ve been somewhat remiss in discussing the book that started it all, the book that was labeled “The World’s Greatest Comic Magazine!” by Stan Lee as a tongue-in-cheek boast, but which history would later prove […]

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Jack Kirby Didn’t Believe in Losers

Even as the San Diego Comic-Con becomes more and more of a pop-culture/movie-and -TV/ glitzy Hollywood event with each passing year, I always make sure to attend a few of the strictly comics-focused panels, just to keep alive that spirit of what I originally fell in love with about Comic-Con. A few years back, one […]

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Welcoming the Future, Treasuring the Past.