0:01-7:17: Greetings from Graeme “Are You Sure?” McMillan and Jeff “She’ll Be Fine, She’ll Be fine!” Lester! Edi took a tumble, Graeme has been under the weather, and we are not even sure we want to talk about comic books? So what do we do, then?
7:17-28:07: Well, why not talk about Fast and Furious Presents: Hobbs and Shaw? It’s kind of like a comic book and, like many a comic book, neither Graeme nor Jeff have seen it! So it’s got to be a great topic for conversation, yeah? How about Joker, that seems a little more on topic, right? Even if we haven’t seen that either? Also discussed: budgeting and The Alamo Drafthouse Season Pass; budgeting and comics purchasing database number crunching; X-Men: Grand Design; and more.
28:07-1:00:28: “You know, Graeme,” ever-obsessive Jeff asks, “what are you obsessive about? It’s clear I’m an obsessive hoardy mess but I don’t necessarily know if we’ve talked about, what are the things that you feel uncomfortably obsessive or sweatily compulsive about?” Discussed: work, food, training yourself off of things, heroin (metaphorical), friendship, upgrading phones, FOMO, X-Men #1, Superman Smashes The Klan #1, failing Marc Singer (sorry Marc!) for not crediting his point in our comments on air, Giant Days, obligation, and MUCH more.
1:00:28-1:17:33: Way back when, Graeme had mentioned Matt Singer’s new book, Marvel’s Spider-Man: From Amazing to Spectacular: The Definitive Comic Art Collection. And he had a point or two to make about it, so we return to more typical Wait, What? ground for a bit. To make it even more on point, Jeff wishes that people writing these mass market character overviews got the chance to curate on streaming services like DC Universe or Marvel Unlimited. (To be fair, Marvel Unlimited actually does something like this already, but only using their own editors and creators.) Also discussed: Disney+, Enigma being reissued (finally!) by Dark Horse; BizarroTV; and more.
1:17:33-1:33:38: Speaking of DC Universe and their TV show offerings, we assume you know about the contest they’re holding where the winner will create a DC Universe unscripted/reality show? We can’t enter, but you can! So listen closely as we try—mostly unsuccessfully, it should be admitted—to come up with winning pitches you can use! Discussed: Booster Gold 2020, Space Cabby 2020, Night Force 2020, Who’s Going To Be The Next Phantom Stranger (2020), and more.
1:33:38-1:47:32: “Hey, you know who’s still alive?” asks Jeff semi-rhetorically. “Don Perlin is still alive!” And how does Jeff know that you might ask? Well, therein lies a story…and a whole lot of talking about Werewolf By Night and Moon Knight.
Undiscovered Country #1 is Image Comics’ Biggest Genuine Launch in Five Years With 83,000 Pre-Orders https://t.co/ZaWNyb9p3H
1:47:32-1:55:46: Dipping our toes in the water of current comics news in the mildest way possible: good on Scott Snyder, Charles Soule, and Guiseppe Camuncoli for the preorders on Undiscovered Country #1! Also discussed: SAGA—where is it? Also, Jeff tries to ask about something about perennial (or strong) sellers for books that only ran about 30 issues and…somehow the question doesn’t quite connect with Graeme, apparently? Hey, it happens!
1:55:46-2:11:53: Back on our bullshit (well, Jeff’s bullshit is probably more accurate) as Graeme returns to The Pitch Zone to suggest some great DC styled reality shows! Discussed: the Legion of Superheroes 2020 reality show and (here’s the Graeme genius in action) the Legion of Substitute Superheroes reality show. Challengers Of The Unknown 2020! Challengers Of The Known 2020! The CW shows and their special effects budgets (2019?), and more!
2:11:53-end: Closing comments! Look for us on Stitcher!Itunes!Instagram! Twitter together and separately: Graeme and Jeff! Tumblr, and on Patreon where a wonderful group of people make this all possible, including Empress Audrey, Queen of the Galaxy, to whom we are especially grateful for her continuing support of this podcast. (Also, don’t forget about Spotify!)
Next week: Drokk!! Grab your copy of The Complete Judge Dredd Case Files, vol. 9 and join us!
0:00-55:59: Greetings! Did you miss us? We missed us. And yet, rather than get too weepy about it, we quickly dive into a topic where we can get too weepy about it: the selling of comic books! Graeme let go of his collection before he left Scotland years ago, but Jeff only got rid of his entire collection of single issues in the last week, and the event looms large in his mind. Join us as we talk big numbers (and not the Moore/Billy The Sink kind): a man turning 50 has 3 weeks to sell 8,000 books! Mentioned along the way: Kurt Vonnegut’s Breakfast of Champions; Neil Fucking Strauss’ The Game; Birds of Prey; Donald Trump; collages; mortality; advertising; Luke Cage; pinkeye; and more.
55:59-1:40:59: On the opposite end of the spectrum: Graeme McMillan! Listen as he journeys between the in-laws to NYCC in a terrifying short time. Hear about a relatively unique con experience from Graeme in that it was constant work but somehow not as exhausting as, say, SDCC. Mentioned along the way: Luc Besson; Jill Pantozzi; Ryan North; Erica Henderson; Will Moss; Cameron Stewart; Dan Slott; cosplay; the news and non-news that came out of the show (Ms. America, Batwoman, Warren Ellis back at Stormwatch; DC’s Kamandi Challenge; Bleeding Cool crashing our browsers; the world’s laziest IT guy; The Blindtastic Four; depressing stuff about Paul Pope; #notmyspiderman, #whoareyourxmen, Kieron Gillen in discussion with Jonathan Hickman; The Star Slammers by Walt Simonson, and Swords of the Swashbucklers by Bill Mantlo and Jackson Guice; the disappearance of cheap back issues; and more.
1:40:59-1:47:14: Getting back to the now de-singled Jeff Lester, Graeme wants to know: will this change the way Jeff reads comics? As we all know, Jeff throws a lot of money at Comixology. Will he know throw them more? Less?
1:47:14-1:53:51: “Should we talk about actual comics that we’ve read?” Jeff asks, “or no?” And that’s pretty much our chance to more or less choose no, and then give callbacks to Graeme’s side of the conversation with discussion about what happened with Starslammers, Swords of the Swashbucklers, and Epic Comics, as opposed to Youngblood and Spawn, or Sex Criminals and WicDiv and Image Comics.
1:53:51-1:57:37: Oh, but Graeme has read the latest Scooby-Doo Team-Up with Hawkman and Hawkgirl, and has very good things to say about this book about which Jeff has been a long-term booster. Bonus: a joke from The Flintstones #4!
1:57:37-end: Closing comments! Next week will be a Q&A session so please feel free to tweet or email us your questions. Look for us on Stitcher!Itunes! Twitter together and separately: Graeme and Jeff! Matt! Tumblr, and on Patreon where a wonderful group of people make this all possible, including the kind crew at American Ninth Art Studios and Empress Audrey, Queen of the Galaxy, to whom we are especially grateful for their continuing support of this podcast.
Next week: Baxter Building Ep. 22! Read Giant-Size Super-Stars #1, Giant-Size Fantastic Four #4, and FF Annuals 11-13 and check them out with us!
00:00-29:40: Greetings from Graeme “Happy Holidays!” McMillan and Jeff “Who to the What Now?” Lester who start off by talking about 2016 right around the bend and all that will bring but also the oddness of recording on December 17: “Star Wars Day (Unofficially).” Yes, by the time you read these words, you probably will have seen Star Wars: The Force Awakens movie and Graeme probably will have as well. We try our hands at fake spoilers, Graeme tells us when he will be seeing the film and, more importantly, what it was like to attend a press screening of Twilight with specially invited fans of the books. Discussed: the phrase “vocal fans,” the phrase “you’re not MY Grand Moff Tarkin,” Star Wars “line frenzy,” the career of Kenny Rogers, Graeme insisting that Jeff knows the plot of the The Force Awakens, and Jeff insisting he doesn’t, rumors from months ago about the third act reveals, the very strange rumor about Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice, the return of Jaxxon and the very first Marvel Star Wars comic arc after the adaptation of the original movie, learning to do Star Wars right, the career of Don F. Glut, Abhay’s interview with him, and more.
29:40-44:42: “Hey, Jeff!” sez Graeme. “Because this is the last episode we’re recording this year, I know I made a totally half-assed attempt at a ‘Best of/Favorites of 2015. Did you?” And Jeff did! HOWEVER, we also had promised to address certain other topics in this podcast before we got around to that. (We had? asks Graeme. We had, confirms Jeff.) Because Whatnaut Kris Peterson had requested it, we read The Horror of Loon Lake, an anthology of comics edited by Carl D. Smith. [EDIT: Ooo, really big oversight on our part as pointed out to us on Twitter: Smith wrote all the stories, which were drawn by different artists. A real mistake on our parts, but also maybe a good sign at how many different types of stories he undertook? You decide!] Discussed: Smell A Rat by Stan Chou; all-ages horror comics; House of Scary by Jeff Manley; Cartozia Tales; and more.
Batman and Robin Eternal #11 by Snyder, Tynion IV, Brisson, Blanco, Duce, Rauch
44:42-1:10:02: And as for our second “we promised we would do this last time (we think?”), we are discussing the first eleven issues of Batman and Robin Eternal, plotted by Scott Snyder and James Tynion IV, and executed by a fleet of talented writers and artists. We discussed it as part of our first issue roundtable on the website but here we dig in to discuss it length. FULL SPOILERS for the first eleven issues so, y’know, spoilers and all. Discussed: Genevieve Valentine, Alvaro Martinez Bueno, and Raul Fernandez; Valentine’s Catwoman; the first few issues of Robin War; more plot-heavy discussion of B&R Eternal; the possible character-breaking plot twist that might be coming; and more.
1:10:02-1:16:30: Graeme steers us back to our Best of 2015 lists, which we finally dig into. Our lists are kinda problematic, in that we didn’t necessarily try to read to keep up with everything, and also because so much of what we thought as the “best” reads of the year either existed before it was published this year or because we just finally got around to it. As we say in the podcast itself, the difference between ‘new’ and ‘new to you’ is almost meaningless these days.
That said: lists! Graeme’s pick for favorite book of the year is Noelle Stevenson’s Nimona (which was a webcomic before it was collected by First Second). Jeff’s only read a page or two but we still get a chance to talk about it for a bit.
1:16:30-1:18:22: Another pick by Graeme for his favorite thing he read this year is 2014’s This One Summer by Jillian Tamaki and Mariko Tamaki, also published by First Second. “It’s so beautifully illustrated, so beautifully observed,” sez Graeme.
Giant Days by Allison, Tremain, and Cogar
1:18:22-1:24:16: Also on the list? Giant Days by John Allison, Lissa Tremain, and Whitney Cogar about kids going off to college. It’s not as magically realist as Bad Machinery but it’s equally funny for Graeme, if not more so. In a similar vein, but more superhero-y is The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl by Ryan North and Erica Henderson (which made both of our lists for best of the year). And even more superhero-y, and also on both our lists are the two issues of Convergence: Shazam! by Jeff Parker and Evan “Doc” Shaner which is, as Graeme so perfectly describes it, “another joyous superhero book that embraces the superhero.”
1:24:16-1:28:28: Graeme goes from that to almost the opposite with Martian Manhunter by Rob Williams and Eber Ferreira. Graeme’s review is kinda spoilery, but makes the book sound intriguing as hell. Not on Graeme’s list but definitely considered and most definitely discussed is Action Comics by Greg Pak and Aaron Kuder.
The Omega Men by King and Bagenda
1:28:28-1:34:34: But on the list: The Omega Men by Tom King and Barnaby Bagenda, and which Graeme refers to as “I think I’ve come to terms with it being my favorite Tom King.”
1:34:34-1:36:25: Another book from Graeme for which he has some complicated feels: Zero by Ales Kot and collaborators. With The Surface and Material as both runners-up and also of a piece.
1:36:25-1:37:54:Transformers vs. G.I. Joe by Tom Scioli and John Barber: it’s on both our lists (despite Jeff being four to five months behind).
Nameless by Morrison and Burnham
1:37:54-1:49:06: “Okay, I’m going to speed through the rest so you can do yours,” announces Graeme, so here goes: this year’s 2000AD Judge Dredd material from Rob Williams and Henry Flint, particularly their sequel to Titan(which Graeme actually talks about for longer than his last two picks put together); The Wicked and Divine by Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie; Multiversity by Grant Morrison and collaborators (also on both our lists), as well as other Morrison works this year: Annihilator with Frazier Irving, and Nameless with Chris Burnham; Unfollow by Rob Williams and Mike Dowling (also on both of our lists); and finally Drawn & Quarterly: Twenty-five Years of Contemporary Cartooning, Comics, and Graphic Novels, edited by Tom Devlin. With special runner-up status for two monthly books that are too early in their run to call the “best” of 2015 (but which both Graeme and I dig a lot): Monstress by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda, and Unfollow by Rob Williams and Mike Dowling.
1:49:06-2:17:55: Jeff’s turn! And since he wrote them all down and is the guy doing the show notes, you can get them in one big pile with notes as to how he read them, albeit one he divided up in a few different categories: manga, stuff that was published this year, stuff that was not published this year, and honorable mentions. (Please note Graeme thought to limit his list to roughly ten titles. Jeff wasn’t that organized.)
Night Nurse #1-4 (digitally, Marvel Comics via Comixology)
Revenger by Charles Forsman (print and digitally, Oily Comics via Comixology Submit)
(With the surprising conclusion that, although he dearly loves his Marvel Unlimited all-you-can-eat subscription, he probably read more comics digitally via Crunchyroll’s all-you-can-eat subscription and also via sales and subscriptions on Comixology…and both of these experiences are still being overshadowed by print. Huh!)
Fantastic Four, by Jack Kirby and Stan Lee
Oh yeah, and truth be told, Graeme and I both really enjoyed reading the first 102 issues of the Fantastic Four by Jack Kirby and Stan Lee for the Baxter Building podcast. Good ol’ Reed Richards has a way of grating on a guy’s nerves, but it was also an *amazing* ride!
2:17:55-end: Closing comments! Our special thanks to the kind crew at American Ninth Art Studios for their continuing support of this podcast..as well as our special thanks to the Empress Audrey, Queen of the Galaxy…and to all 115 of our supporters on Patreon who make all this possible.
Overall, it’s been a pretty great week for good news—subsidies for The Affordable Care Act upheld, gay marriage legal a nationwide right, Evangeline Lilly shitting on recent Ant Man comics—but, me being me, there’s a piece…