SVT Kiss

Super-Villains Unite, indeed…

Whew, what a quickly spinning world we live on.  As I write this, it was exactly a week ago that Edi and I touched down in Portland, Oregon for a whirlwind visit that, once again, had me missing Rose City Comic-Con by thisssss much. And now here I am typing up the notes for the second in-the-flesh Wait, What? podcast.  185 episodes, and only two of which were recorded with the participants in the same room?  Verily, this is the Mighty Wait, What? Age of Hikikomori, True Believer! (Sorry, I’ve been reading too many Roy Thomas introductions recently.)

Without further ado…let’s do, shall we?

00:00-08:41: Greetings from Graeme “On The Street Where You Live” McMillan and Jeff “The Call Is Coming From Inside the House” Lester who dare you to figure out the strange secret of this episode’s recording! [Hint: we recorded it live in the same space, which is why it sounds so different.] [Spoiler: that was really more of a spoiler than a hint.] [Addendum: And that was really more of a hint than a spoiler.] [Postscript: That was actually an addendum, though.]  Once again, we are recording live but this time there is no professional microphone to help us, just two men hunched around a single laptop, so we apologize for the slightly less great sound. But for now, settle in and relax as we try out introductions, Graeme tells a story from the recent Rose City Comic-Con, we try to determine how many people hate Graeme, and more.

Coyote Reagan

teeny image!

08:41-25:43: For example, here’s a story about the two of us shopping at Cloud Nine Comics in Portland, Oregon, where one of us was the very model of restraint, and the other one of us was Jeff.  Mentioned: Steve “The Stinker” Englehart; whether or not Englehart is still in Oakland, California; whether to eat the brain or the liver; sitting adjacent to Chris Claremont; Englehart’s Coyote and the last cover thereto; meeting pros at cons (wait…is that deliberate?), Graeme’s amazing and entirely accidental pantomime; the ideal price for back issues; Jeff’s visit to Cosmic Monkey Comics; comic t-shirts we have worn and are wearing including these amazing beauties; and more.
25:43-48:02: Talking about Cosmic Monkey conjures memories for both Graeme and Jeff of Comic Relief in Berkeley, which leads us down the primrose path of memory about how intimidating it was for us to shop in Comic Relief in Berkeley and Comix Experience in San Francisco; being slagged off by comic store clerks; being slagged off by comic store customers; and then back to talking about all the comic book stores in Portland and San Francisco, and what it’s like to live in a city with only one comic book store; which one of us had a “quitting comics” phase and which one didn’t; how living close to a comic book store can help you transcend superhero comics; and more.
Wait Watch

Wait, Watch?

48:02-1:10:51: “Hey, why don’t you talk about your Steven Englehart comics?” Graeme asks, so of course we talk about the announcement of Ta-Nehisi Coates writing Black Panther for Marvel.  We also talk about the less-covered news of Frank Tieri writing The Black Knight (and Catwoman!); who’s more important to DC, what’s-her-name or what’s-his-name; the news from DC, including the cancellation of Doomed, the un-cancellation of Omega Men, and whether or not the Internet has as much faith in DC as DC has in the Internet.  Also discussed:  the first issue of Omega Men and whether or not it needed to be more clear; the first issue of Watchmen; the mastery of Dave Gibbons; and more.

Skull Saucer

1:10:51-1:22:29: Comics we’ve read recently!  Sure, we can talk about those!  But first let’s talk about reading said comics on the Kindle, because Jeff bought Graeme a copy of the Skull the Slayer collection for the Kindle and Graeme had….problems.  Is the Kindle really a digital comic book platform at all?  And what did Graeme think of Skull The Slayer? Also discussed is the Kindle version of Super-Villains Unite, Marvel’s collection of the old issues of Super-Villain Team-Up.
SVT Doom

It sounds like a weird braggy innuendo, doesn’t it?

1:22:29-1:41:34: In fact, here’s Jeff discussing those very same issues of Super-Villain Team-Up! Learn what you’re (probably not) missing from Victor Loves Namor, the romance comic about two characters who can’t stand each other, as written and drawn by creators who can’t stand them, either.  Also discussed:  Jim Shooter as writer and artist; Steve Englehart and the guest-star to end all guest-stars; the secret connection between Dr. Doom and Batman; Reed Richards eating his own hair; the crossover that points to a coup; the coup that leads to a new President of Ecuador; and more.
1:41:34-1:52:45: Graeme has read Klang!: A Writer’s Commentary by Priest about the making of Q2: The Return of Quantum and Woody from Valiant. Discussed: Bill Cosby and Mark Waid; transgender in the scripts but cis gendered in the art; dropped plotlines and characters; gossip and process; unreliable narrators; Power Man and Iron Fist, and more.
1:52:45-end: Graeme also quickly mentions the 2000 A.D. jumping-on issue (Prog 1950) that he read and reviewed here on the site, and then is kind enough to lead us into… Closing comments!  Stitcher! Itunes! Twitter together and separately: Graeme and Jeff!  MattTumblr!  And, of course, on Patreon where, as of this count, 109 patrons make this whole thing possible!
Since WordPress isn’t automatically converting all links into the audioplayer, we’re going to leave the first comment to you and allow anyone who needs to to cut and paste from directly below:
We will be back next week!

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13 comments on “Wait, What? Ep. 185: PDHexed

  1. LAndrew Sep 28, 2015

    That SUPER VILLAIN TEAM-UP page makes me think Venture Brothers was really onto something after all,

    It’s a shame Q2 ended up so disastrously, though hearing Graeme’s analysis of what Priest said about it makes me wonder–in general, do “creator returns to definitive work” thing ever work out well? All the ones I’m thinking of (Claremont returning to X-MEN springs most readily to mind) just tend to be disastrous for whatever reason.

    Though I suppose there’s Miller’s second DAREDEVIL run and Layton and Michelenie’s second IRON MAN run that stand as contrast–they’re pretty good. It was just a thought that occurred as I was listening.

  2. I’m always mildly disappointed you guys don’t dig Coyote; it’s easily my favorite of the (admittedly, not exhaustive) Engelhart I’ve read. It’s like if Doctor Strange was a gigolo version of Bugs Bunny, and just as self-indulgent as that sounds, but I love its stream-of-consciousness enthusiasm and bonkers villains, and the art is downright beautiful in places.

  3. Zaragosa Sep 28, 2015

    I co-sign Joe’s disappointment that you guys don’t groove on COYOTE! It’s a highlight for me in my personal Engelhart canon, as well as one of my favorite weird-ass 80s creator-owned oddities, full-stop. A delightfully bizarre mash-up of Carlos Castaneda and superheroes, written by a man who had clearly dabbled in no small amount of peyote amidst his extensive study of Crowley, magick, etc. Also, Joe is right-on about the art: Steve Leialoha’s style was delicate and lovely. Yes, the fashions are a tad dated, but my God could that man draw an *actual* coyote! Seriously. He’s really good at drawing the titular animal whenever it appears in the series, which was not infrequent, if memory serves. The back part of the wraparound cover to issue one features a close-up on the face of a smiling coyote that looks somehow utterly mad and weirdly beautiful, all at once. Much like the series itself. Thank you, good night, read COYOTE, available in dollar bins everywhere.

  4. Just hit the Esteban Aguilar part. That’s amazing.

    After you guys wrap up Baxter Building, it might be cool to see you do Sheer Engelhart Attack or something…

  5. “disfigured by monks”… probably my favorite phrase of the year? Might have to start a band just so I can name it that

  6. Hey Jeff,

    I used to live in Nashville (the hipster side, even!) and I know what you mean about the comic stores. There used to be a pretty great record/comics store called the Great Escape down near Vanderbilt, but apparently they’ve moved out into the burbs. They also had another store even farther out in the burbs with some amazing back issue bins. Me, I went to a store in the strip-mall wastelands near the airport because they had crazy discounts. I have no idea which of those stores are still around.

    The thing about Nashville was that while it had one of everything (biergartens! Turkish restaurants! good comic stores!) it generally only had one of everything, and you ran through them pretty quickly. After my first year there I felt like the city had exhausted its capacity to surprise me. We loved our neighborhood on the east side, but when it was time to go I didn’t have any regrets.

    • Jeff Lester Oct 2, 2015


      Thanks for this reply, which answered all sorts of questions I’ve never voiced out loud (as in: how long would it take for this city to exhaust its capacity to surprise if you lived here).

      Yelp is down at the moment, but I believe Great Escape is still there and almost ended up being visited by me except the reviews made it sound like more of a record store than a comic book store. Based on my bookmarks, I believe the store I visited was Rick’s Comic City, way out on Old Lebanon Road. Really nice store, but as mentioned I felt oddly incomplete after visiting it.

      Again, thanks for this! Helped me give me a little bit of likely closure on the whole Nashville thing.

      • Ha! Rick’s was my regular store actually, and I’m glad to hear it’s still around. Very nice owner and staff.

        The Great Escape moved out to Sylvan Park, I think. No idea what the record/comics balance is like now but the Vandy store was great in its day. Kind of sad to think they couldn’t make it work next to a college campus.

        I don’t mean to sell Nashville short, because it did sustain some delights to the end (as in, “Hey, two of the Black Crowes are the house band at the neighborhood bar this month”). But coming from a bigger city was definitely an adjustment.

        • Wasn’t there a flood at The Great Escape a few years ago that prompted their move? or was that at their second location (and is that still around?)?
          Loved the main one downtown back in the day. It’s where I discovered things like Moore’s Swamp Thing and Chaykin’s American Flagg. And the record selection was great, too.

  7. Based on the description of DC’s cancelled Doomed series (“What if Spider-Man became the Hulk?”) I think it might be time to bring back this 1990 Gerry Conway/Alex Saviuk creation…

  8. Matthew Murray Oct 4, 2015

    For no real reason I really consider Frank Tieri to be the type or creator who just shouldn’t be getting work. I mean, he’s been producing stuff fairly regularly for fifteen years, but I don’t think anyone considers his work particularly memorable in regards to be it being good _or_ bad. (I dunno, does anyone think he’s produced something that is really good?)

    When I think about how dominated by white males the comic book industry is, I wish editors would just assign books to more diverse creators instead of people like him. I mean if the editorial fiat is “put out a four issue miniseries featuring the Punisher”, does it really matter who’s actually writing Space Punisher or whatever?

    • Jeff Lester Oct 4, 2015

      This is such an *excellent* point, MM. Thank you for it.

      If anyone does know a good work from Tieri, drop us a line in the comments, yeah?