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Comic Shop Talk: December 2017

Comic Shop Talk is a video blog dedicated to Comics, and pop culture talk including movies, television, books, and more.  Ken Lee is the author of our long-running comic blog The Crank File, Rob Goyer is our Cards and Counters game blog author, Tylor Hamel appears in many in-store livestreams and works at Great Stories Comics & Gaming, Wayne Demers is author of our very own The Dope Sheet movie blog, and Chris Mills is the owner of Great Stories. 

Greetings everyone, and welcome to another installment of Comic Shop Talk.

Our first video (Starring Ken, Rob, Wayne, and Chris) covers all things comics starting with DC, before getting into Marvel, and ending with a couple of Indie suggestions.  Check out the timestamps below.

0:00-13:05:  DC talk including Doomsday Clock, Dark Knights Metal, Batman: White Knight, Batman/Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

13:06-34:48:  Marvel talk including many Legacy titles including Jean Grey, Doctor Strange, Punisher, Moon Knight, Astonishing X-Men, Spirits of Vengeance, and Monsters Unleashed. We also give some commentary on Marvel’s lenticular covers.

34:49-41:15:  Star Wars in Comics including talk about the Mace Windu limited series and the Darth Vader.

41:16-42:52:  A couple of quick Indie selections including Spawn and G. I. Joe for the prospectors.

Our second video covers our Pop Culture Talk, as Tylor joins the discussion!

0:00-14:00: We talk about The Punisher on Netflix.

14:01-16:24:  The immediate future of Marvel/Netflix cooperation and releases.

16:25-24:50:  We then delve into Thor:Ragnarok.

24:51-36:00:  We talk the Justice League movie.

36:01-43:30:  We talk a bit about the approach of DC and Marvel to their cinematic universes.

43:31-47:35:  We talk Marvel’s Inhumans (Disaster…Marvel is human!).

47:36-49:50:  A little talk about Agents of SHIELD.

49:51-51:20: We preview a bit of Hulu’s Runaways series.

51:21-1:01:47: We discuss some 2018 projects that are anticipated for both TV and film.

 

Write in to us with any suggestions you have for comic and pop culture topics for our next video!  You can reach us at [email protected]!  Thanks for watching!

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Trailer Snark (June 3, 2016 Theatrical Trailers)

Welcome to Trailer Snark, a weekly column covering trailers for movies that will be released this week with thoughts from our roster of bloggers (Jessica from The Female Perspective, Ken from The Crank File, Jim from The Front Row View, Rob from Spector for Hire, and Great Stories founder Chris).  Thanks for reading, and enjoy the previews!

Last Week:  Another Marvel franchise tops the box office in its debut week as X-Men:  Apocalypse took in $65M.  Alice Through the Looking Glass debuted in second with $28.1M.  Last week’s winner, Angry Birds, slipped to third place with another $18.7M for a total domestic haul of $66.3M.  Civil War came in fourth with $15.1M and $372.6M overall.   Neighbors 2 rounded out the first five with $9.1M and $$38.3M overall.  The rest of the top ten was as follows:  Jungle book ($6.9M/$338.4M), The Nice Guys ($6.3M/$21.7M), Money Monster ($4.2M/$33.9M), Love and Friendship ($2.4M/$3.4M), and Zooptopia ($1M/$335.8).  Let’s check out this week’s new box office entries!

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows (Paramount) – Action/Adventure
Rated PG-13 for sci-fi action violence
Tag Line: Only one team can defend us all.
Starring: Megan Fox, Will Arnett, Tyler Perry
Plot: As Shredder joins forces with mad scientist Baxter Stockman and henchmen Bebop and Rocksteady to take over the world, the Turtles must confront an even greater nemesis: the notorious Krang.
Running Time: 112 minutes

Chris: A vigilante who uses a hockey stick as a weapon?  It’s about dang time!  I’ll take that with a side of pizza any day.
Jim: Between the onslaught in the early ’90s and the current rebirth—-enough awready!
Jessica: Please good Lord above, no more turtles! I barely made it through the 1st one, i cannot do it again.

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping (Universal) – Comedy
Rated R for some graphic nudity, language throughout, sexual content and drug use
Tag Line: None
Starring:  Adam Samberg, Imogen Poots, Bill Hader
Plot: When it becomes clear that his solo album is a failure, a former boy band member does everything in his power to maintain his celebrity status.
Running Time: 86 minutes too long

Jessica: Eh. Could be funny, could be terrible. Either way, I am NOT going to the theater for it.
Chris: More like poopstar.
Jim: A few too many poop jokes.

Me Before You (MGM) – Drama/Romance
Rated PG-13 for thematic elements and some suggestive material
Tag Line: None
Starring:  Emilia Clarke, Sam Claflin
Plot: A girl in a small town forms an unlikely bond with a recently-paralyzed man she’s taking care of.
Running Time: 110 minutes

Jim: Looks good, I guess the book was a big deal.  They probably didn’t have to show the whole dang movie in the trailer, though. Rental.
Jessica: This looks good, but only the kind of good movie that I watch to get in a good cry, like “PS I Love You”.
Chris: I may catch this at home with the wife, but no way is this a theater viewer.

The Fits (Oscilloscope) – Drama
Not Rated
Tag Line: None
Starring:  Royalty Hightower, Alexis Neblett
Plot: While training at the gym 11-year-old tomboy Toni becomes entranced with a dance troupe. As she struggles to fit in she finds herself caught up in danger as the group begins to suffer from fainting spells and other violent fits.
Running Time: 72 minutes

Chris: Another one more “fit” for the small screen, especially at a 72 minute running time.  I hear that Royalty Hightower gives a heck of a performance in her breakout role.
Jim: Always good to see something other than the usual cookie cutter trailer. Nicely done.
Jessica: I want to say I’ll watch this at home because it does intrigue me, but I know I’ll forget all about it and never watch it. Looks like an interesting story and some great acting from Royalty Hightower (amazing name by the way).

Tickets Purchased:  One for The Fits (Jim) and One for the Turtles (Chris)

This rookie could have a bright future!
This rookie could have a bright future!
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The Crank File: What I’m Reading This Week 3/9/2016

Welcome to another episode of the Crank File, now with 20% more crank per file. Sad news as comic book artist and Massachusetts native son Paul Ryan died this week. Ryan was an absolute beast during the 80’s, penciling flagship Marvel series like the Avengers, the West Coast Avengers, Iron Man and an astonishing five year run on the Fantastic Four. If you read modern age comics during the late eighties slash early nineties, then chances are you are already familiar with his work. You know that Amazing Spider-man issue where Peter and MJ got married? That was Paul Ryan. Although his name is not as widely remembered as other stars from that era, his artwork will be appreciated by comic books fans for generations to come. Paul was only 66 years old.

 

Here’s what I’m reading this week:

 

The Top of the Pile:  Batman / Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #4

 

BMTMNT 3

Publisher: DC/IDW

Words: James Tynion IV

Art: Freddie Williams II

What it is: With the possibility existing that they might never get home, the Turtles take up residence at Wayne Manor. Everyone seems to be adapting except for Raphael, who still can’t understand why his friends all trust this Bat-person. So Batman takes the skeptical Turtle on a trip down Crime Alley to tell Raph what led him to don the cape and cowl in the first place.

Why we love it: Gotham has been the perfect stage for introducing the Dark Knight to the comedic stylings of the Ninja Turtles and I’m amazed by how seamlessly the two worlds have blended. This week Bruce tells Raphael how he became the Batman. Batman’s origin story is a crucial part of what makes him tick, but we’ve all heard the story a million times by now. This will be Raph’s first time and he gets to hear Bruce tell it firsthand. That’s top of the pile material.

 

The Mainstream One: Vision #5

v5

Publisher: Marvel

Words: Tom King

Art: Gabriel Hernandez

What it is: The secrets are turning into lies, and the lies are turning into blood. In the midst of this violence, Vision must find the truth of what happened to the Grim Reaper. But when he does, will he protect his family or destroy them? Find out as the story of Vision’s family builds to a breathtaking cliffhanger.

Why we like it: The unexpected hit of Marvel’s relaunch for me has been Vision. This book is a hundred times darker and more insane than anything I could have ever imagined. But most of all, the Vision feels new. It’s so refreshing to read a story that doesn’t feel like it has been done a thousand times before. I feel like this series has the potential to be something really special and I highly recommend checking it out if you haven’t done so already.

 

The Indie One: Head Lopper #3

 

HL3

Publisher: Image

Words and Art: Andrew MacLean

What it is: Norgal and Agatha meet fellow adventurer Zhaania while battling a mega-arachnid from Hell.

Why we like it: Set in the world of swords and sorcery, Head Lopper is an adventure comic that follows Norgal, a nomadic warrior who travels the land with the wise-cracking, decapitated head of a witch Agatha and it is just enjoyable as heck. Andrew MacLean has a voice and visual style that is totally unique and wholly his own.  The first two issues were packed with monsters, violence and humor and by the sound of “mega-arachnid from Hell” issue #3 will stay the course.

 

The #1 One: Haunted Mansion #1 (Crosby variant)

 

HM1

Publisher: Marvel

Words: Joshua Willamson

Art: Jorge Coehlo

What it is: WELCOME, FOOLISH MORTALS, TO THE HAUNTED MANSION! It seems that no one lives in the elegant mansion on the hill, but then where’s that creepy organ music coming from? Are the iron gates meant to keep people out, or some things in? Get ready to meet the 999 ghosts of the Haunted Mansion, but be warned, they’re looking for the 1000th! The delightfully chilling Disney attraction comes to (after)life in an all-new story, penned by JOSHUA WILLAMSON with art by JORGE COELHO! Don’t miss the next great Disney Kingdoms adventure, and the most spine-tingling experience you’ll find this side of a Doom Buggy!

Why we like it: The haunted mansion ride is pretty high up on my favorite Disney memories. There’s just something about the strange combination of horror and humor that never fails to put a grin on my face.

 

The One I’m Buying for the Cover: Detective Comics #50 (Tony S. Daniel polybag variant)

 

DC50

Publisher: DC

Words:  Peter J. Tomasi

Art: Fernando Pasarin

What it is: Jim Gordon faces his past in this extra-sized conclusion to his most shocking cold case yet. With history itself forcing him to reflect on the last year as Batman, Gordon must make a decision about what his future holds in Gotham City.

Why we like it: Another fantastic Batman vs Superman cover. I love the cartoonish proportions of the figures on this cover.

 

That’s all I got this week. Until next time, carpe comics!

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The Crank File: What I’m Reading This Week 01/11/2015

The Top of the Pile: Batman Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (Eastman variant)

 

BTMNT2

Publisher: DC/IDW

Words: James Tynion IV

Art: Freddie Williams II

Trapped in a world where they can scarcely tell friend from foe, the Turtles’ first encounter with the Dark Knight puts their fighting skills to the ultimate test. And while Batman and scientist Lucius Fox search for any clue as to where these strange ninjas come from, Shredder strikes a deal with The Penguin!

The first issue of this unconventional crossover felt very natural. Using Killer Croc to segue into a universe shared by both series was brilliant. I was surprised by how well the distinct styles of the two worlds meshed together. I can’t wait to see more and especially look forward to when Batman gets a load of Krang. Bats has seen some strange stuff in Gotham, but a brain being from another dimension…  Love Eastman’s swipe of his iconic TMNT #1 cover.

 

The Mainstream One: Secret Wars #9

 

SW9

Publisher: Marvel

Words: Jonathan Hickman

Art: Esad Ribic

Prepare for GENESIS and witness the birth of All-New, All-Different Marvel.

In reality it is three months after Genesis and we are finally finding out how the current Marvel Universe came to be. There will be answers and hopefully some will be enriching, but since Marvel rebooted in October the secrets of Secret Wars have lost a lot of their intrigue.  The series has actually been amazingly good, but it was disappointing not knowing the conclusion before Marvel rebooted.

 

The Indie One: Walking Dead #150 (Moore variant)

 

WD150

Publisher: Image

Words: Robert Kirkman

Art: Charlie Adlard

In our 150th issue, Rick Grimes finds himself… BETRAYED.

Issue 100 was a huge milestone issue for the series and it was marked by the brutal murder of a major character. What will #150 bring? With the way things have been shaking out for Rick’s crew, probably someone important is dying. There are a handful of covers coming out with #150 and they are all pretty awesome. The Tony Moore swipe of Walking Dead #1 is going to be popular, but the jewel will be the black and white, regular cover. Not a ratio incentive variant, every comic book shop will be sent one copy and only one copy of the retailer appreciation variant. Already pre-selling for more than $200, the black and white variant is going to be a ghost on Wednesday.

 

The #1 One: Legend of Wonder Woman #1

 

LoWW1

Publisher: DC

Words and Art: Renae De Liz

In the beginning there was only chaos. But Hippolyta, Queen of the Amazons, saw a better future-and eventually, her daughter would be destined to bring that new world to life! Before her ultimate fate unfolds, though, Diana of Themyscira must learn the important lessons of an Amazonian childhood!

This series has already been released digitally and it is a gorgeous, modern retelling of Wonder Woman’s origin story. One of the best things that DC has done with Wonder Woman’s character is allowing women to write her. The most talented female writers in comics have graced the pages of Wonder Woman, which shows how much faith DC has in newcomer De Liz, an artist to keep an eye on.

 

The One I’m Buying for the Cover: All New Wolverine #4 (Sook variant)

 

ANW4

Publisher: Marvel

Writer: Tom Taylor

Art: David Lopez

THE DOCTOR IS IN! Things get truly STRANGE when Wolverine turns to the Sorcerer Supreme in the next mystical chapter of the mystery of the three sisters. But will the supernatural efforts of Stephen Strange combined with the raw power of THE WOLVERINE be enough to combat the evils of Alchemax? Parental Advisory

Best Wolverina cover yet. A lot of people are making the case that Ryan Sook’s covers are on the same level as Adam Hughes. I think a more accurate comparison is with Dodson, but there’s no denying that the guy’s got serious talent.

 

The Speculation One: Silk #3

S3

Publisher: Marvel

Words: Robbie Thompson

Art: Stacey Lee

SPIDER-MAN VS. SILK! GOBLIN KING VS. SILK!!! ALL IN ONE ISSUE?! 

Looks like Silk’s got her hands full this week. I know I say it every month, but I am loving this series. In issue two we were briefly introduced to a mysterious, goblin looking dude with sweet phasing abilities. Is he an ally? Who is he working for? And how does he know Silk’s secret identity?  Will we get a full introduction this week? The 1:25 Campbell variant cover is already creeping up to triple digits on the Bay and should be on your radar on Wednesday.

 

Carpe Comics!

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The Crank File: What I’m Reading This Week 12/9/2015

Greetings comic book fans and welcome back to the Crank File, the only file that gives you 50% more file per crank. Another good week of books coming up and I have still barely touched last week’s stack. So this week, instead of my normal shtick, I’m giving you two comics per category and keeping my personal opinions short.

Here’s what I’m reading this week.

 

The Tops of the Pile:

 We Stand on Guard #6

 

WSOG6

Publisher: Image

Words: Brian K. Vaughan

Art: Steve Skroce

MINISERIES CONCLUSION The smash-hit miniseries reaches its epic FINAL ISSUE with explosive battles and shocking revelations… but how will things end for the Great White North?

There are few things in the world more satisfying than a good Brian K. Vaughan ending.

 

Harrow County #8

 

HC8

Publisher: Dark Horse

Words: Cullen Bunn

Art: Tyler Crook

Kammi has rallied the forsaken haints to her dark cause. Now Emmy may have to make a profound sacrifice if she hopes to protect her kith and kin at the heart of Harrow County.

Demon fight!! Latest news on the Syfy TV adaptation is that it has moved into development.

 

 

The Mainstream Ones:

Secret Wars #8

 

SW8

Publisher: Marvel

Words: Jonathan Hickman

Art: Esad Ribic

GENESIS! 

I’m sticking it through until the end, which has now officially been pushed back to January 2016.

 

Contest of Champions #3

 

CoC3

Publisher: Marvel

Words: Al Ewing

Art: Paco Medina

IRON MAN! JOE FIXIT! GAMORA! MARVEL’S HEAVY HITTERS COLLIDE IN THE CONTEST! Can Iron Man and Gamora trust Guillotine – or is the call of her bloody legacy too strong? Ares strikes! Plus: Venom Hulk?!

Yup, you read that correct. Venom. Hulk.

 

 

The Indie Ones:

Monstress #2

 

M2

Publisher: Image

Writer: Marjorie Liu

Words: Sana Takeda

Maika fights to cross the wall.

Loved the oversized first issue. Can’t wait for this #2.

 

Head Lopper #2

 

HL2

Publisher: Image

Writer: Andrew MacLean

Words: Andrew MacLean

Norgal and Agatha pass through a dark forest with a particularly grim history, where they meet a strange little creature named Gnym. Is he a friend? Or does he just want to see undead giants squish the Head Lopper to meat-jelly? All this… And more! MAJOR PLOT POINT Villain, Servin Lulach’s origin story is introduced.

Loved the oversized first issue. Can’t wait for this #2. Creator Andrew MacLean will be hanging out at Friendly Neighborhood Comics in Bellingham, MA on Saturday Dec 12 from noon to 3pm.

 

 

The #1 Ones:

Batman Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1

 

BMTMNT1

Publisher: DC

Writer: James Tynion IV

Art: Freddie Williams II

DC Comics and IDW team up for the crossover you never saw coming as two of the greatest entertainment icons meet for the first time! In Gotham City, a series of deadly raids leads Batman to believe he’s up against a group of highly trained ninjas known as the Foot Clan! Somehow, they’ve crossed over to another dimension and are determined to take advantage of the situation while looking to get back home. But they haven’t come alone: Leonardo, Raphael, Donatello and Michelangelo are hot on their trail. Get ready for excitement as heroes and villains from both worlds clash and team up in an epic battle that threatens the very fabric of reality!

There was no way that I wasn’t buying a Batman/TMNT crossover. Having Tynion IV writing the script is just gravy. I’m snagging the Eastman variant.

 

Snow Blind #1

 

SB1

Publisher: Boom! Studios

Words: Ollie Masters

Art: Tyler Jenkins

What happens when you discover your dad isn’t the man you thought he was? For high school teen Teddy, life in a sleepy suburb in Alaska turns upside-down when he innocently posts a photo of his dad on Facebook, only to learn he and his family are in the Witness Protection Program. A man seeking revenge invades their town, and soon FBI agents arrive, too. But what if his dad’s reasons for going into the program aren’t as innocent as he says?

I’m really digging the creative team on this one. The 1:20 Matt Taylor variant cover is stunning.

 

 

The Ones I’m Buying for the Cover:

Insexts #1

 

I1

Publisher: Aftershock Comics

Words: Marguerite Bennett

Art: Ariela Kristantina

At the dusk of a century, a pair of vengeful Victorian vixens discover a horrifying power that transforms them into rich and strange new creatures. Armed with their dark, evolving forms, they descend into a world of the cultured and occult, with new senses and new sensuality, to forge a life for themselves and the child of their love. This new monthly series is the brainchild of writer Marguerite Bennett (A-Force, Angela, Red Sonja) and artist Ariela Kristantina (Wolverines, Deep State), a comic unlike any you’ve seen before!

Classic art nouveau, reminiscent of painter Alphonse Mucha.

 

Batman #47

 

BM47

Publisher: DC

Words: Scott Snyder

Art: Grag Capullo

While Jim Gordon is in the fight of his life against Mr. Bloom, Bruce Wayne discovers a shocking secret about his past that will change everything in Gotham City! This issue features open-to-order variant covers by Alex Ross that will be shipped in opaque polybags.

This Alex Cover is a swipe of a cover he did in 1999 for Batman: Harley Quinn. The issue was printed in prestige format and introduced Harley Quinn into the main DC continuity. There were unconfirmed reports last week that a few fans actually received original artwork within their black poly bags for Harley’s Little Black Book #1.

 

 

The Speculation Ones:

Justice League: Darkseid War #1 (Lex Luthor)

 

JLDW1

Publisher: DC
Words: Francis Manapul

Art: Bong Dazo

Lex Luthor has gained the power of a God, but his one failure continues to deny him the peace he craves-and only a crazed Superman can help him get it!

If you’re caught up with the Darkseid Wars, then you know that at the end of the latest issue Lex Luther is imbued with god-like powers. This will be his first full appearance with super powers. Lex was scary enough when he was just relying on his evil mind.

 

Brooklyn Animal Control #1

 

BAC1

Publisher: IDW

Words: J T Petty

Art: Stephen Thompson

Brooklyn Animal Control is not your run-of-the-mill social services agency, and the officers assigned to it are not your average caseworkers? they are a breed apart. These street-hardened veterans negotiate a dangerous secret world in the heart of New York City, one inhabited by werewolves that roam the streets by night, and infest the hidden back rooms of the criminal elite in their human alter-egos by day. Which of their forms is more viscous is open to debate? but both are equally deadly!

The USA channel is currently developing a pilot for the TV adaptation of this series.

Carpe Comics!