Invincible – Comic to Cartoon Show – Season 1

I finished watching the last episode of Invincible last week and can speak to the series so far in comparison to the comic. Generally, I think they are doing a great job with the cartoon show and the pacing is solid. The Invincible comic starts slower and then ramps up a bit quicker when it does get going than the show–then it starts to cover a LOT of ground. I’m over halfway through the comic series and unfortunately the writing quality really starts to drop, I THINK due to the tie-ins with the other Image comic heroes and what looks like some sort of cross-over event? The middle of the series has an interesting world-effecting plot line that seemed phoned in and didn’t mesh well with the overall metaplot of the series at all. I can’t tell from the trade paperbacks what else was going on with Image at the time, but I’m hoping the comic gets back to form.

But that’s far, far in the future for the Invincible cartoon show and I’m sure they will clean that part up (or even skip it).

In terms of the show’s pacing, the cartoon did the Omni-man plot much slower than in the comic, but did the ‘guardians of the globe’ plot much earlier. The Mauler Twins/ Robot incident doesn’t happen in the comic until long after the main ‘twist’ to the series is revealed. So we got more time with Mark and his dad and less time with development of the Guardians (the new ones that is, I’m trying real hard not to have any spoilers).

The coolest ‘added’ part in the show which isn’t in the comic is when Omni-man goes to the other dimension where the invaders keep coming from and fucks them up, big time. This was eluded to in the comic but never directly shown (as it would reveal too much about Omni-man at that time in the story). That was great.

The battle in the very first episode and the team battle in episode 5(?) vs Machine head were both superb. The comic handles the first Omniman battle quite differently and the Machinehead fight just hit all the numbers with even more intensity than the comic. Image comics (the good ones) have always had solid fight scenes, especially Savage Dragon, and I think Invincible deftly pays homage to Eric Larson’s masterwork.

Of course, there’s shit I didn’t like. I do not like the show’s version of Amber. The girl that Mark was protecting from that bully guy in the comic was not Amber, it was another girl and that girl had no interest in Mark at all. The issue has nothing to do with the fact that they changed her to a different character/skin color, it’s that Amber in the comic LOVES Mark, and it takes a really long time for things to go south because of his duties as Omni-man v2. Comic-Amber doesn’t ever tell him to fuck off and frankly, the way he’s treated by cartoon-Amber in comparison– she has no value as a girlfriend at all compared to the Amber in the comic book. It’s very strange. It’s like they wanted to make this empowered woman that won’t take any shit but that’s not at all what Amber in the comic is about, and Mark really tries to be a nice guy (albeit with anger management issues) and doesn’t ever give her any shit to deal with except the fact that he has to run all over the place to save the town/city/world at times.

Multi-hued Viltrimites. In only one scene there are darker skinned Viltrimites. Typically the Viltrimites are pale with black hair– they all look pretty much the same except for a couple I’ve seen in the comic with different hair colors (usually older ones). While I’m not going to spoil anything about what they actually are, seeing them with different skin colors was very strange and didn’t make a lot of sense. Part of what makes the Viltrimites.. uhh… what they are is that they are all the same and if they aren’t the same, part of a plot later on that’s critical doesn’t make a lot of sense. Let’s see where they go with this one. I saw three of the main Viltrimite characters in the short cut scenes in the last episode and they all looked like they did in the comic.

Final episode pacing. After the big battle, there was a very long period of mellow scenes to roll the episode out. Frankly I would have left it with Omni-man flying away, then cut. I don’t think they knew they would get another season (they did) so maybe that’s why they ended it a bit like a movie.

Anyway, these are minor quibbles to a really awesome series with incredible violence and a compelling meta-plot to hang everything off of. I loved that the lines that Omni-man was saying to Mark in the last episode were things that many dads would say to their teen-age sons. I certainly heard such phrases from my dad, basically “I should have raised you differently, you don’t understand what you are supposed to be doing, you’re not listening, none of the things you think are important now are important at all when you put things in perspective.” Etc. Just like dad’s saying those things…. the eerie part is: many of those things end up being true for many sons. Let’s see if that’s so for Invincible!

One thing you can absolutely count on if you haven’t read the comic is that the level of crazy superhero graphic violence will continue on and on and on.

“I suspect that we are ill-formed for the path we have chosen. Ill-formed and ill-prepared. We would like to draw a veil over all the blood and terror that have brought us to this place. It is our faintness of heart that would close our eyes to all of that, but in so doing it makes of it our destiny… But nothing is crueler than a coward, and the slaughter to come is probably beyond our imagining.”

Invincible Series debut Friday

While my daughter said “this looks like it has a 2$ budget” from the trailer, she will be forced to watch at least the first episode of Invincible on Friday.

I passed the comic up at the comic store based on how…. lame the main character’s uniform is. It’s striking, but looks like Elastic Man with different colors. However I gave it a try and the comic is good, easy reading, especially after I’ve been on the Alan Moore stuff for so long that is both text and artistically dense as hell (mostly due to Kevin O’Neill–wow) and let’s see how the show follows suit. There is a BIG twist in the series that doesn’t suck at all, mostly because when the twist happens, that’s when the story really starts– If you find it slow at first, stick with it early on until, well, you will know.

There are some parts that get tedious, but when the fighting starts it gets good in the same vein as Savage Dragon (who is in the series as well). The super hero battles deliver on a level rarely seen in DC or Marvel stuff and because the characterization and development is so strong outside the fights, they don’t turn into just your standard early Image constant battle comics (see 90’s Cyber Force, Brigade, Youngblood, Supreme, WildCATS, Stormwatch… did I miss any?).

New Mutants, what happened!

Maaaaattt and I tried to go to the movie theater Friday and it was great: we were just spaced out and had to wear masks when going into the theater itself. If we skip the masks, it would be a fucking AWESOME experience as it is a completely non-crowded theater by design. I recommend going to see movies now before things get back to normal as you will not have crowds.

However, our attempt to see New Mutants failed as Mother Nature had other plans. A GIANT supercell went over the top of the movie theater before floating angrily out over the lake and knocked the power out all over the area, including the theater.

And, of course, it was right when the movie was starting to get interesting.

As far as I can tell seeing only about half the fim, New Mutants is a horror movie with super heroes, which due to my love of BPRD (Hellboy), Call of Cthulhu and CMON’s The Others, is right up my alley.

And who is not a fan of Magik?

FUCK OR FIGHT.

Justice League – The Giffen/DeMatteis years

I found the video below and wanted to post it for those of you that may have an interest. Even though I was a little kid, I was definitely OFF normal superhero comics by the mid-80’s, especially the DC ones who seemed super cheesy next to the Xmen– that is until Crisis on Infinite Earths, which was amazing beyond compare. Note: generally people think Marvel got WORSE after Secret Wars, and DC got BETTER after Crisis and set shit straight that DC was and is better than Marvel. Out of that came a new Justice League comic that was pretty much one of the best –and certainly my favorite— comic runs in the history of (standard) superhero comics.

This series takes a bunch of second run heroes, many of which were acquired from other comic companies over the years, and mixes them up in some high-stakes trouble while following many of their domestic lives. The core series with the writers lasted for 60 issues and is collected in trades. Like Swamp Thing, Groo, the Claiborne Xmen and Byrne Fantastic Four, JLI is a must read series even today and has had a huge influence on the direction of DC. The also excellent and much more recent Mr. Miracle series is almost a sequel to this work.

Comic stuff 2016!

Sheet. I haven’t posted in a long time here. Work has been kick me up inside the backside and I pretty much come home, do stuff I have to do and then veg out in Fallout 4 then it’s up early and back to the grind.

First, I found on drive thru a  FREE updated version of FASERIP.  This is that old yellow box Marvel game TSR put out that we tried to play instead of Champions or TMNT for once… and at 12 years old or so, failed utterly.  I owe it to myself to try it some time as I tossed the yellow box and contents into the garbage about 10 years ago.

I’ve read some comics recently, some good, some bad, some in the middle. Needless to say, the superhero genre is only loosely represented in what I like to read.

Legacy of Luther Strode

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This was an interesting series, 6 issues, and the very end of the Luther Strode series (really?).  Tradd Moore’s art is unique and very clean. The first few issues were excellent, though light, fare.  However, near the end and especially the last issue, It was a bit of a let down, just not dense and at the end of the last issue, I was like: why did I pick this up?  I felt like I missed everything and had no idea what the characters were talking about when they were talking and not throwing down.  However, many of the fight scenes in these are fantastic.  Maybe you had to know all the characters first?  Looking forward to more Tradd Moore stuff though after this taste.

 

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LOW

I liked this book a lot, until the mutant mice appeared and then… I just kept plodding along with issues. I’m hoping it concludes.  It had moments of absolute brilliance early on. Tocchini is amazing.  Read about the first 12 issues.  Then stop.

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HEAD LOPPER

Adventure Time style art and Ultra violent viking shit.  What’s not to love?  It’s a lighter book (what did you expect?) but quality through and through.

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BPRD

This series has been going strong for awhile now.  I picked up some of the older trades in a used bookstore a few weeks back and was very impressed.  BRPD is an offshoot of HELLBOY: this series is the fish guy, the fire girl and some others who are paranormal investigators and destroyers.  It’s a bit like THE OTHERS board game or Xmen vs Cthulhu, and of course, could be compared to League of Extraordinary Gentlemen with a lot less tracking of allusions! Recommended.

The FUTURE

Looks like fans of Moebius and Numenera/The Strange has another friend in Rick Remender with his upcoming comic: SEVEN TO ETERNITY. First issue looks like it’s out now.

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Comic Recommendation

Head Lopper.  Get it.

While I think LOW, one of my current favorites, may have jumped the shark with sentient MICE, I was happy to find issue 3 of Head Lopper sitting on the shelf and it’s superlative.  Think viking violence mashed in with adventure time.  I also picked up Miracle Man Olympus from the Alan Moore period where he teams up with the soon-after-to-be Swamp Thing artist.    Also just finished Junji Ito’s UZUMAKI, which I had only read parts of on the internet in the past.  Highly recommended.

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lopped

IDW lands Micronauts and ROM

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Two big comics from my errant youth may be back in action– both TOY BASED and should have been total shit, but both the early Micronauts and the middle run of ROM were excellent.   Yes yes, the endings of both series were quite bad, but at that point both had been handed off to various other teams and artists and it just naturally turned to shit.  I’m very interested in what IDW does with these two.  The plot of ROM was fantastic for one, and Micronauts wasn’t too shabby either.

The only worry for me is that Micronauts has had at least one reboot (not including Micronauts Voyages which killed off all the characters in the end) and it was awful, so we’ll see…  Go Baron Karza Go!

Pinterest’s new zoom search feature

It’s terrifying and awesome. Basically you see a picture you like and you can click on it, then you can search for more images LIKE that one by zooming in on a part of the image. While this could be very useful for just about everything, the obvious use is obvious.

of course I'm just searching for a camel-toe style bathing suit for Spring...

of course I’m just searching for a camel-toe style bathing suit for Spring…

 

Seriously though, it’s pretty great for other stuff as well– really it is.

Secret Wars II: Cloak and Dagger

For those of you steeped in Marvel geekery in the mid-eighties, this is a fucking brilliant read about the abhorrent Cloak and Dagger Secret Wars 2 crossover.  I had come out of my “buy everything Marvel” phase around this time with just how shit ROM had become and how piss Secret Wars II was from the outset– even as a little kid it was obvious something had gone terribly wrong with comics that would only be redeemed by the shallow but beautiful Image comics late in the decade.   This was also the time I started getting into Epic Magazine, Heavy Metal, Alan Moore’s Swamp Thing and Cerebus (which was just a confusing mess for a kid really) so it was a distinctive shift from mainstream comics.  Reading this, you can fucking SEE why in all the gory detail.

Beyonder checking out some booty.
Beyonder checking out some booty.