We continue our discussion of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby's original X-Men comics with issue #6, guest staring Namor the Sub-Mariner! This issue features some of Kirby's best art seen in the series thus far, but it is in service to a story that feels like filler material. In this episode, we discuss the purpose of character archetypes and how they are represented in these old stories, as well as the different storytelling styles of Silver Age comics compared to modern comics.
We continue our discussion of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby's original X-Men comics with issue #5. Picking up directly after the events of the previous issue, this comic boasts lots of action with a crowded busy plot. Despite the messy and sometimes confusing events, Issue #5 continues to lay the foundation for what will become standard tropes and themes in future X-Men comics. We see the first appearance of Magneto's Asteroid M and Stan and Jack also start to lean into the Civil Rights allegory that the X-Men have come to embody and represent throughout the years.
Aaron and Alex continue their discussion of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby's original X-men comics. In this issue, Magneto returns with the first appearance of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. As on previous episodes, we discuss how the childish stories and simple plots are elevated by fun and sophisticated characters and exciting art by Jack "King" Kirby.
Aaron and Alex discuss Stan Lee and Jack Kirby's X-men #03. This issue features the first appearance of the longtime recurring villain, The Blob, and establishes Beast's famous 'intellectual' character trait not seen in previous issues. This issue also contains the infamous scene in which Professor X secretly confesses his love for Jean Grey. The discussion mostly revolves around the terribly stupid plot in which Professor X, the world's most powerful telepath, cannot forsee The Blob refusing to join the X-men. Having revealed the X-Men's secrets to a potential enemy, Professor X again resorts to his morally questionable tactic of erasing memories.
I am joined by three artist friends, Gabe Dunston, Ed Bickford, and Levi Hoffmeier to discuss Dark Horse's second Blacksad release titled A Silent Hell. In this lengthy episode, we discuss Juanjo Guarnido's stunning art in this book. From his beautiful water colors to his fluid page layouts, this book is an artistic masterpiece. We also discuss writer Juan Diaz Canalez's work with the film noir genre setting, the anthropomorphic characters, and tell stories about the time Gabe and I met Juanjo at a comic convention.
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Aaron and Alex discuss Stan Lee and Jack Kirby's X-men #02, featuring the forgettable villain The Vanisher! The discussion revolves around Kirby's unique ability to provide exciting, fantastic art and weird, bizarre design choices. We also discuss Lee's characterization of the X-men and continue our retroactive observation of continuity or character quirks that would later become the basis for larger stories and plot twists.
Aaron is joined by Alex Harner to discuss a little comic published by Marvel in 1963 called the X-men #1. We discuss the historical significance of the issue as well as some of the current events going on at the time that led to the style and tone of the story. We also look at the issue with our modern perspective to see how well it holds up compared to the vast history and mythos that has become a multi million dollar franchise in the decades since its creation.
Fellow comic creator Thom Hotka joins me to talk about his webcomic, Nextuus. We also talk shop about some of the differences in writing for webcomics compared to print comics, and we discuss this year's Planet Comic Con and how to deal with a convention that doesn't go well.
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This is the first episode in a new style where we break from the traditional Comic DNA format and instead just hang out with a creator and do general interviews. In this episode, my old friend Alex Harner joins me to discuss our favorite topic... X-men comics. We announce our intent to read the original Stan Lee/Jack Kirby issues which will be discussed on future episodes of this podcast.
We also discuss the X-men's place in American pop culture, as well as talk about the challenge of being a fan of something without being a dreaded "fanboy".
Aaron is joined by Gabriel Dunston to discuss The Eltingville Club by Evan Dorkin. The dark satire of fanboy culture hits a little too close to home for Aaron and Gabe as they discuss some of the psychological underpinnings of the collectors hobby, whether or not they identify with the unlikable characters presented in the book, and Dorkin's unique and intense art style.