Alex and I return for our discussion of Stan Lee & Jack Kirby's classic X-Men issues. Issue #8 sees the introduction of Unus the Untouchable. We have fun discussing the kitschy elements of the story and are happy to see that the fundamental themes of intolerance are used well, despite some lazy plot mechanics and cheap tension.
Carlos Gabriel Ruiz joins me to discuss The Flash: Time Flies, written by John Rozum and drawn by the underrated artist in all of American comics, Seth Fisher. Time Flies is a short story about The Flash traveling to a strange and distant future in order to save an Air Force test pilot and prevent him from destroying the entire universe. We spend most of the conversation talking about Fisher's incredibly unique and detailed line work and quirky artistic vision.
Check out Carlos' comics here:
We continue our discussion about Stan Lee and Jack Kirby's X-men with issue 07, featuring the return of the Blob and the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. Alex and I don't have much to say about this issue as we both agree that stagnation is setting in for this series. While the art and storytelling are technically well done, characters and stories are starting to feel stale. We do a brief comparison to the first seven issues of Fantastic Four and Spider-man to compare the exciting and progressive nature of those books to the X-men's general repetitiveness.
Comic creator, film director, and all around goofy guy Christopher Ochs joins Aaron for a creator hang out. We talk about a few movies (I do a terrible job of remembering Art School Confidential, but Chris sells me on 10 Cloverfield Lane) and complain about directors JJ Abrams and Joss Whedon. We gush about Ash vs. Evil Dead and also complain about the increasingly annoying nature of nerd culture. Plus, I tell a story about a group of Deadpool cosplayers that got threatened by a comic professional. We end the scattered conversation with Chris talking about the short film he's currently making.
Check out Chris' comics here: http://www.fantasticcrapcomics.com
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.
Check out Levi's comic Mayflower at:
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Check out Ed's art at:
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.