Thursday, April 17, 2014

Best of the rest : what didn´t make the cut

Yes, I just had to cut some of the links from my best of list but I still think some of them might be interesting for my readers new and old.

I really thought I could eliminate more to shorten my BEST OF THE BEST post considerably, but at the moment I don´t know what is expendable from the post. Who knows ? A few days down the line things might look different. In any case, after working on this for three days I´m entitled to a break, especially since it´s Good Friday and I have to work Tomorrow. So without any further ado here are the other links of interest :

The good, the bad and the ugly compares three animated DC movies, Batman Gotham Knight, Superman Doomsday and Wonder Woman.

Not really a great post but rather an interesting one deals with ADAM HUGHES` LOST GEN 13 COMIC and I tell you where you can find this gem.

A Halloween post that goes from Edgar Allen Poe illustrated by Bernie Wrightson and Richard Corben to interesting posts about guns to  hot celebrity birthday babes Jamie Gertz, Lauren Holly and Gabrielle Union

to some reading recommendations for Halloween to cult tv series SLEDGE HAMMER which was not only hilarious but also had stunning sexbomb Anne Marie Martin playing the scorching Dori Doreau on the show.

We continue with comic pimping. A lot of posts deal with comics I want to promote because I think they are great or they are offered at a bargain price at amazon. Not all of them are really extensive and some of them also cover other topics. So the ones I culled are about Bendis All New X - Men , Mark Waid´s Daredevil , Hulk - Red and green by Jeph Loeb, Arthur Adams and Frank Cho, Wednesday Comics, iZombie and Hellboy House of the Living Dead and the mega crossover event Avengers vs X - Men .

Another series I read as a kid was The Phantom by Lee Falk and there also is a post about him . It´s the first of a series to be continued.

Talking about pop culture icons, one about which I have written many posts is of course The Doctor and I wanted to include some of the posts just to show that we talk Who here. But going over them I noticed that it´s basically just me talking about my experiences with watching Doctor Who or reading the comics which are probably pretty boring to other people. My Who posts were  IT`S A BIG WHO - NIVERSE OUT THERE , THINGS TO DO WHILE WAITING FOR THE DOCTOR and KNOCK ON TORCHWOOD which is about Torchwood, Paul Grist and The Doctor.

Some readers seem to enjoy my travels so here are some posts from my last trip to Spain : HOME AGAIN , MEANWHILE IN A LITTLE VILLAGE IN SPAIN - which for some reason is my fourth most popular post  - probably for the nice pictures of Elvira, Stacy Kamano, Anastacia or Jewel Santini.

Or it could be my review of the tv show Human Target. One more post from Spain : SO MANY COMICS SO LITTLE TIME

Another area of interest for my readers seem to be comic conventions and Free Comic Book Day or the german equivalent GRATIS COMIC TAG.

I decided to cut the posts from Free Comic Book Day 2009 because they are redundant. But since they are the most popular post of all times - if you can believe that - here are part 1 , part 2 and the the big finale . Much more painful was getting rid of the following bunch of posts :

I continued my reports from the greatest comic convention in Germany in 2010 with My second Erlangen diary - day 1 and Day 1 continued . I never got to the second day but maybe I can still finish it since I found my notes on this comic convention and a few others just recently while cleaning up. And I didn´t have more luck in 2012 since I only managed to cover the 1st day ( I think ) in Suddenly : Erlangen ! and My Erlangen crash course . One reason why readers might like these posts are that apart from these posts about the Stuttgarter Comicbörse in 2009 , in 2010 , in 2011 in May and in November I don´t get to pimp current comics from Germany often.

With the german version of FREE COMIC BOOK DAY I wrote about what really went down that day in my Top 10 things not to do on Gratis Comic Tag post and one about the Muppet Show comic by Roger Langridge that also has a recommendation for the DARK AVENGERS hardcover by Brian Michael Bendis and Mike Deodato. Back then it was offered at amazon at half price but the current price of 37 bucks is still not bad for a 50 dollar book. Another account of one of my odysseys on Gratis Comic Tag is Now that you´re naked, why don´t you jump into this field of cactuses ? a fun read ( well, not for me ). And here is a post about my one and only trip to the Comicbörse in Leonberg which didn´t go any better and in which I talk quite a lot about the old 80s POWER MAN and IRON FIST comic book.

More about german comics can be found in ACH DU LIEBER ! MEINE GERMAN COMIC READS and my rant about tv series and german superheroes . This post is partially about german comic artist Gerhard Seyfried and the rest is about my recommendation of Stan Lee´s Amazing Marvel Universe, a book that talks. Literally ! THE VOICE OF STAN LEE

TRIPPING THE RIFT is of course about the animated cartoon show with that title and the sexy Android Six. Another cult siren post is BETTY OF TWO WORLDS about Betty Brosmer, of the most famous pin up models of the 50s who was one of the first models to receive residuals every time her picture was published and the first one to own rights to her photos and magazines. In the 60s she married fitness mogul Joe Weider and for some strange reason it´s one of the most spammed posts on this blog.

And finally I have to include the 20 days later - the all butt edition and the HAPPY BIG CULO DAY 2014 ! posts, mainly because they really are not among the best posts I ever made. I included it in the list for pure self indulgence and just because I can. But let´s be honest : you didn´t really think they were going to make it, did you ? Still worth checking out....

To end this post here´s one of the funniest clips I found on YouTube lately, a crossover between DEXTER and DEXTER´S LABORATORY. It´s hilarious.

New to the blog ? Everything you need to know about TALES FROM THE KRYPTONIAN : top ten posts / more posts of interest / best of the best

And I´m tired.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Post 450 - Best of the Best ( final version )

This has been a difficult post because on one side I really only wanted to include the very best of the best. On the other side these posts are all like my children and I don´t want to leave anybody out. But I have to.

Going over the last 5 years of posts - which is the time since I last did one of these posts to add to the bottom of each post - I found a lot of posts that would be worthy additions. But I had to narrow it down so I´m going in the order of what I think is most important for my readers.

Now in my first Top Ten post I included my first post ever which was a mission statement about the blog and what I wanted to achieve. I don´t have that kind of post in this one ( as obviously you can only have one first post ) but I touched upon similar ground on this post about the 5 year anniversary of spanish bloggers / independent comic publishers Rabtifuso. In the intro I´m writing a lot about how I write my own blog.

Likewise this post answers any questions you might have.

Okay, time to get serious. What I want to include first are my posts about one of the greatest comic artists ever, the late Moebius since I don´t get to write too often about comic artists who don´t make superhero comics. One of the reasons I HAVE to include these is that I worked a long time on them and the other one is that there still may be people in America ( or Europe for that matter ) that are new to comics and not aware of his art.

So far I have done four posts about Moebius : WORLDS GREATEST COMIC ARTISTS : MOEBIUS which is about the science fiction comics he did as Moebius, GREATEST COMIC ARTISTS EVER : JEAN GIRAUD which is about his other work ( for some reason this is one of my most spammed posts ), WORLDS GREATEST COMICS : BLUEBERRY about his famous western BD and MOVIE RUMMAGE TABLE : TIME MASTERS about a french animation film from the 80s for which he did the designs. I still haven´t gotten around to do a post about his best known series THE INCAL. Sorry.

The next post I just had to include is of a more recent date, and it´s all about giving props to cosplayers which everybody seemed to like.

Cosplaying has become a sub culture in itself and a lot of the people that are involved have become professionals with costumes that are just incredible. So instead of the usual hot cosplay girls I wanted to showcase a few of the more unusual costumes. Don´t get me wrong, I´m not above appreciating a sexy girl dressed up as a comic character but there are so many hard working people out there who deserve a spotlight feature.

In the future there will be more of these posts - probably with a certain common theme from the various categories - and this was my first one.

Another source of excellent posts have been my trips to movieland and tv series from my youth. The first three posts I have to include in this list are movies that are related to comics like the sci fi classic LOGAN`S RUN which was adapted to comics a few times, the first time by George Perez ( ! ), horror cult flick PUMPKINHEAD which was adapted by Dark Horse and DELLAMORTE DELLAMORE better known as CEMETERY MAN in America.

It´s a horror cult movie based on a book written by Tiziano Sclavi, the author of Italy´s most successful comic DYLAN DOG which I wrote about at length in this post . The main character is brilliantly played by Rupert Everett and Anna Falchi plays the female lead ( and a few other women ).

Which brings me to my next section, the ever popular tv / movie cult sirens. And I say popular because I always get the most comments on these. They also get lot of spam but them´s the breaks as we say.

But the reasons for these posts are not always happy ones and MOVIE CULT SIREN TURA SATANA who died in 2011 was one of these cases.

I know it was a bit risky because readers tend to riot if the boob factor is too high on my posts but this was about art - pop culture art and stuff.

It should come as no surprise that I was a big fan of Russ Meyer´s work ( at least to regular readers of my blog ) and even if you have never heard of Russ Meyer ( yeah, right, fat chance ) you know the movie FASTER PUSSYCAT ! KILL ! KILL ! which has gotten critical acclaim by movie critics and historians alike. So I was a bit surprised that there was nothing about it on german news which prompted me to write the post. I tell you, to have german television mention your death you have to be either some theater intendant nobody ever heard of ( Germany has more theaters than any other european country ), an actor from some obscure german television show before the invention of color tv or a corrupt politician.

On a more upbeat note is the next cult siren, Elvira, of who I did two posts, a rather long one about the Mistress of the Dark herself ( with her bio ) and one about her comics . This one is for you, Terry, old pal.

( Elvira picture above by DennisBudd on DeviantArt

Horror is also the topic of my post about JaMILF Lee Curtis although I also talk about her comedy movies like SOLDIERS OF FORTUNE and A FISH CALLED WANDA. But most of it is about her sexy striptease in True Lies.

A bit more " over the place " is the post about movie cult siren Janet Jones Gretzky , Playboy model and wife of famous hockey player Wayne Gretzky who was in POLICE ACADEMY 5 - ASSIGNMENT MIAMI BEACH.

Which in this case means anything from the Police Academy comics to the Police Academy cartoon show ( the less said about that the better ) to the Police Academy movies with real life Power Girl Leslie Easterbrook who played officer Debbi Callahan and had her best scene in POLICE ACADEMY 4 - CITIZENS ON PATROL where she was in a pool with a wet t - shirt. 
  We then continue to - naturally - Dirty Harry, Carmen Electra, Pamela Anderson and Becky Mullen a.k.a. Sally, the Farmer´s Daughter on GLOW  which brings us back to comics via ROBI a.k.a. Rochus Hahn a.k.a. Horst Brack Der Bestrafer on Germany´s cult wrestling show CATCH UP on RTL.

Speaking about coming back to more comic content : the next cult siren post contains the usual musing from me about the cult tv series Wonder Woman played by Lynda Carter on one of her birthdays . I also did another post on Lynda Carter about her work as an actor and singer outside of the Wonder Woman series and one about Wonder Woman comic covers

A rather new post is WONDER WOMAN WEDNESDAY ( once again on Lynda Carter´s birthday ) about John Byrne´s run on the book I just re - read.

John Byrne brings me back to the next point on the agenda, which are my favorite artists. Which means two of my favorite Batman artists. For me Jim Aparo was always the definitive Batman artist but I also was a huge fan of his other series like AQUAMAN, THE SPECTRE or THE OUTSIDERS .

The combined original covers to the crossover from The New Teen Titans 37 by George Perez and Batman and the Outsiders 5 by Jim Aparo.

Anybody knows who did this homage with the Avengers and the X - Men ?

Number 3 on my list of Batman artists is Norm Breyfogle ( number 2 is Neal Adams ) who got his own Greatest Comic Artists post. There´s also Norm Breyfogle´s Batman : a different look an article written by David Fernández on the occasion of the release of his Batman run with Alan Grant in the spanish hardcover edition which I translated to english. And there´s this years Norm Breyfogle Wednesday done on Norm´s birthday and which covers everything I haven´t talked about in the previous posts.

George Perez.

I just love me some George Perez. He´s one of my favorite artists of all times and I get all excited whenever a new hardcover collects some of his work. Just last month I got the fabulous The Art of George Perez book and it´s incredible. So it´s no wonder that some of my longest and best posts are about his work. REMEMBER THE TITANS is as the name says all about his time on New Teen Titans or rather the german version Junge Giganten which is where I read those comics first. I continued this a bit with THE DUAL DYNAMICS OF THE DYNAMIC DUO , which goes on about why Robin gets older but Batman doesn´t and the many deaths of the Robins.

Of course he worked on other books like his Avengers which I mentioned in this post where I whined about the fact that there is not enough of John Buscema´s run available in hardcover as well as in my GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY - MY SECRET ORIGIN post which I´m including here since there´s a big blockbuster movie coming out now. With Rocket Racoon.

George Perez also worked on one of Mark Gruenwald´s most beloved stories The Project Cadmus epic from Marvel - Two - In - One .

Darick Robertson Donnerstag made on his birthday takes a look on his career, and books like New Warriors, Wolverine andTransmetropolitan.

I tried to continue it 2 days later but ended up with something completely different : a post about german horror comics and cheap pulp novels .

Other artist spotlights include Pasqual Ferry , done on his birthday

and this post about the passing of Gene Colan one of the comic greats.

We´re so far into the post and I still haven´t mentioned Power Girl which makes regular readers think there might be something wrong with me.

Usually you can´t get me to shut up about Power Girl but the truth is there hasn´t been much positive things to talk about since the NEW 52. I talked about this issue in WHAT HAPPENED TO THE MAID OF TOMORROW ? and this post which is more about old horror comics. But I wanted to include it because I wrote it with the new WORLD´S FINEST series already being beyond issue 6. Just so you see that my predictions were on point. And because the part about the old Warren comics is one of my finest efforts.

I also want to add this post with Power Girl cosplayer Vegas PG and a Deja Vue section about Action Comics 1 ( the first part can be found here ).

Another excellent post is BIG BARDA : SEX, LIES AND VIDEOTAPES about another underused female character of DC comics. With big breasts.

Go figure. Now is it just me or does DC not know what to do with all the woman who have not the normal bust size ? I mean Power Girl, Starfire, Catwoman, Big Barda, they effed all of them up with their NEW 52. With Big Barda they effed her up so bad they destroyed all of the New Gods with her. Okay, some of them seem to be coming back in the pages of WONDER WOMAN but so far Big Barda is ( luckily ) nowhere to be seen.

One of the series I haven´t continued in a long time - much to the chagrin of my readers - is the Comicbabe Battle series. The last ones have been about the hot babes of beat em up games with two posts : THE RUNNERS UP and THE FINALISTS . Hopefully I can continue this year with it.

Most posts here are about superhero comics but there are a few exceptions where I wandered outside of my comfort zone - or at least found some interesting independent comics to write about.

First I have to mention Black Tower Comics, the one man independent publishing machine of Terry Hooper from the excellent ComicBitsOnline blog. I haven´t done as many reviews I would have liked and I hope to continue with them as soon as I can. So far I have done reviews on ONE BAT, TWO BATS, THE BAT TRIUMPHANT ! , GERMANY`S FIRST SUPER HERO TEAM called D - Gruppe, D - GRUPPE RETURNS AND IT`S ABOUT TIME ! and TWILIGHT OF THE SUPER HEROES . Terry also brought the work of Dave Gordon to my attention. Check out my excessive reading .

HAVE SWORD WILL TRAVEL is about one of my favorite independent books Usagi Yojimbo by Stan Sakai and Mike Mignola´s Hellboy is mentioned in a number of posts. VIVA HELLBOY ! is about Hellboy in Mexico by Richard Corben, Mike Mignola´s work on Hulk and Rocket Racoon ( did I mention Rocket Racoon before ? ) in the 80s and masked luchadores like El Santo De Plata ( I have finally managed to see El Santo y las Mujeres Vampiro ). Another Hellboy comic by Richard Corben is The Crooked Man which is one of my horror recommendations on this Halloween post ( the other is Batman The Unseen ). Hellboy is also mentioned on this post about german censorship and swastikas, WHAT COULD POSSIBLY BE MY LAST POST but wasn´t. Instead this was the post that nearly ended my blog , maybe someday I´ll tell the story behind it.

Yes, we also do westerns. Not often but HEX APPEAL takes an indepth look at the Jonah Hex issues by Jordi Bernet and WILD WILD WEST GERMANY is all about the german western comics I read as a kid.

And speaking about comics I read as a kid IZNOGOUD one of the best comics in the world was among them. It´s a french BD and since it may not be well known outside of Europe I had to include it here. I also did a post about the Iznogoud and Mick Tanguy movies that might interest you.

Now I can´t talk about indie comics without mentioning the great Mike Allred. I already had to cut the other two comics he was involved in Wednesday Comics and iZombie ( which are great reads, well the last one since I still haven´t read the first one ) but I´m not cutting  Don´t get even - get Madman ! since it´s not only ultra long but also one of the posts where I managed to stay focused. It´s also the famous post where I explain what Rubbelbilder are for all my readers outside of Germany.

Love and Capes is another great independent superhero series which gets my unconditional recommendation and I´m sure it´s also going to be your next favorite superhero book . In more indie related stuff I wrote about the resurrection of Valiant in THE FALL OF DC - THE RISE OF VALIANT ? and I did a rundown on the Valiant books I used to read in this post

Before returning to superhero books here are the links for my Neil Gaiman tribute , DIE GROSSEN PHANTASTIC COMICS about the german fantasy comics I read as a teenager and MY EPICLY ILLUSTRATED JOURNEY TO DREADSTAR about german Epic comics, Marvel graphic novels in the german and original version, Jim Starlin and the Cosmic Odyssey.

As you could guess from the title I´m a big Superman fan so I should have probably started there. Since my last roundup of excellency there have been quite a few number of posts about The Man of Tomorrow on my self declared Superman Day , Man of Steel Monday , Man of Testosterone Tuesday and me bitching about the new Superman movie . Great Rao !

One of my favorite superhero teams is the Legion of Super - Heroes so it should be no surprise that there have been quite a few new posts on that subject since my last best of post. HOW THE LEGION OF SUPER - VILLAINS OF THE 21ST CENTURY WAS BORN dissects one of the big time period confusions of Legion lore , REBUILDING THE FUTURE has some random stuff as well as my first Legion Deja Vue pictures and MON - EL SPELLS MONDAY. DAS IST M - O - N - D is another Legion Deja Vue post.

Another favorite super team is the Justice Society of America ( and not only because Power Girl is a member ) and I BLAME THE SOCIETY is about my favorite JSA story Thy Kingdom Come as well as the penciler for the following storylines, Jesus Merino and which comics he did in Spain.

The Justice League of America is always a topic on this blog and on CRY ME A RIVER . . . . CRY ME SOME JUSTICE I give a recommendation for the brilliant CRY FOR JUSTICE series by James Robinson and Mauro Cascioli ( as well as for Jim Starlin´s Death of the New Gods series ). One of the best Justice League series was the topic of my GENERATION LOST post which was for some unfathomable reason mangled beyond recognition and I had to rebuild the entire post again. Still one of my best ones.

Readers seem to especially like my posts down memory lane so I want to close the DC section with IT`S ( NOT MARRIED ANYMORE ) FLASH FRIDAY  and THE RETURN OF FLASH FRIDAY a new series about how I started reading the FLASH books with Wally West and why he´s my favorite Flash.

The Marvel section starts with  I`M RECOMMENDING A SPIDER - MAN BOOK because this will probably be the only such recommendation for the forseeable future. I think this was the last good Spider - Man story and if there are posts about Spidey they will be like  SOME SPIDER - MAN FOR YOUR EARS AND EYES about some spotlight episodes on ComicGeekSpeak and the beloved Power Records or ENTER : DIE ERSTAUNLICHE SPINNE ! and MAKE MEIN MARVEL MONDAY about the german Spider - Man comics of my generation. The same is true for The Incredible Hulk and I pay tribute to one of the best runs of Hulk - the one by Len Wein, Sal Buscema and Ernie Chan - in THIS MAN THIS MONSTER TUESDAY .

Another favorite Marvel series of all times is Fantastic Four and there have been some great posts on the book. It seems that I especially like to do them on the anniversaries of the blog since ESSENTIAL ESSENTIAL FANTASTIC FOUR was done on the fifth year anniversary and there´s also A POST FOR THIS BLOG´S SIXTH ANNIVERSARY ( which continues The Coming of Gabriel storyline from the MORE ESSENTIAL FANTASTIC FOUR READING post ) and goes a bit into the german publishing history of DIE FANTASTISCHEN VIER, how the series is called in Germany.

Speaking about another Kirby creation form the pages of the Fantastic Four, I want to mention INSTEAD OF HALLOWEEN - BLACK PANTHER and BLACK PANTHER - A DIFFERENT KIND OF MONSTER , two excellent posts.

More Bronze Age Marvel stuff in these posts about the David Micheline, John Romita Jr, Bob Layton run on IRON MAN in this post and here , I re - visit two of the most iconic stories from the Chris Claremont and John Byrne run on UNCANNY X - MEN in DAYS OF FUTURE PASTS LONG GONE BY and WHAT HAPPENS IN PHOENIX STAYS IN PHOENIX about Phoenix : The Untold Story, take a look at old crossover events like INFERNO in LIKE A BOOK OUT OF HELL - START THE FIRE and LIKE A BOOK OUT OF HELL - FAN THE FLAME , get all misty eyed in THIS WAS MY SECRET WARS and SECRET WARS II : BLACK WAS THE NEW BLACK and even find something positive about the Avengers period between the end of John Buscema´s and Walter Simonson´s tenure on the book and the HEROES REBORN re - start with Mark Waid and George Perez namely The Gatherers storyline  .

From time to time I discuss general topics on my blog :

WHITE IS BLACK, BLACK IS WHITE AND GETS RUN OVER AT THE NEXT ZEBRA CROSSING  about Perry White being black in the next Superman movie and the new black / hispano Ultimate Spider - Man Miles Morales. Another topics is the neverending discussion about comic prices, what´s appropiate and what´s too much. I voiced my own opinions in THE 3.99 DOLLAR QUESTION when the last price increase occurred. Always an issue are digital comics and the file sharing thereof about which I voiced my thoughts in READ ME NOW AND BUY ME LATER . Marvel was also the topic of two articles, MARVEL.1 - NOT AS STUPID AS IT SOUNDS ?  which was more favorable than Best time to quit Marvel ? Right NOW ! . The title says it all. As does MY FANBOY RANT  ( german version ) a rally to arms.

Wow, this really has gotten longer than I expected. As a bonus for holding out so long I want to include is my post about  POPCULTURE TV SIREN MARKIE POST . I know that this post is in the " most popular post " gadget ( although only at number 5, what´s up with that ? ) but I´m including it just in case that ever changes. You never know. And a lot of people seem to have discovered my blog through this post so it helps increase traffic. 

There is also some stuff about Heather Thomas in the post since she also appeared on FALL GUY. I still haven´t gotten around to give Heather a post of her own which I´m hoping to do on her birthday one of these days.

And with that we really are at the end of the posts that is going to be included at the bottom of each new post on Tales from the Kryptonian.

I´ll try to shorten it a bit in the coming days but I´m not sure I can leave out anything else. If you want to see the parts I had to cut just click on the next post or follow this link . Me, I´m going to be busy the next few weeks ( or rather months ) going over all the posts I linked to - when I´m not writing a new post - so I´m wishing all my readers a Happy Easter !

I thought about which clip I should add that would be right for the best of post but since I couldn´t decide which of the ones I hadn´t posted yet was the best - and I couldn´t find It´s the Easter Beagle Charlie Brown !  - here´s a movie I mentioned in the Hellboy in Mexico post : It´s SANTO EL ENMASCARADO DE PLATA CONTRA LAS MUJERES VAMPIRO. Not really for the holidays but a long post deserves a long video. Arriba !  

New to the blog ? Everything you need to know about TALES FROM THE KRYPTONIAN : top ten posts / more posts of interest

Friday, April 11, 2014

Like a book out of hell - fan the flame

I know you expected something special for the 8th anniversary post but I had everything already lined up for this post so instead we´re going to continue with our look at the X - MEN : INFERNO crossover books.

I still haven´t found the time to re - read the hardcover collection I got from amazon but I did read the next ones we are going to talk about - AVENGERS and FANTASTIC FOUR - as they came out back in the day.


Now before we get to the meat and bones of the post I wanted to mention that one of the reasons why I decided to delve into the netherrealm of old 80s Marvel crossovers is that the INFERNO storyline was never published in german - at least the main part with the X - Men and all the important mutants. That´s right, here in Germany one of the most important sagas ( where resolution of plot points which have been dangling for decades is concerned ) was deemed not important enough to be published. Condor was publishing Marvel Comics around the time and while the X - Men had two formats they stopped just before that with the floppies at issue 16

and with the much dreaded pocket books at issue 21 which still was in the period when John Romita Jr was penciling the book as you can see.

With other titles like FANTASTIC FOUR, AVENGERS or the SPIDER - MAN books they were further ahead the publishing schedule so german readers got some of the crossovers but not the main story which was a bit weird.

Although not as weird as when Panini started publishing the X - Men again and the entire mutant landscape was different. I mean, they not only skipped INFERNO but also MUTANT MASSACRE, FALL OF THE MUTANTS also everything by Jim Lee and began right before AGE OF APOCALYPSE.

Which is one of my favorite alternate reality X - Men stories and not only because Joe Madureiras was really firing on all cylinders then. It was a really cool story and one of the few instances where the fans prevailed over the comic critics who have downtalked this event since day one. But I still think it would have been better if the guys at Panini would have gone back a bit further than that when they brought the X - Men back.

So for german readers there were huge chunks of x - continuity missing and while some were published later on INFERNO wasn´t among them.

And I really have no idea because I tried - very unsuccessfully - for years the get german publisher Panini to release it. But the answers were always the same. Either the quality of the art wasn´t there ( yeah, who would pay money for such hacks like Marc Silvestri, Walter Simonson or Brett Blevins ) or nothing important happened ( like the resolution to the whole Madelyne Pryor thing, who she really was, what became of her, what the deal was with Scott Summer´s baby, you know, the one who becomes Cable later on, hello the entire Cable backstory ? etc, etc ) or they just didn´t want to do it. I have talked to a few german comic readers who bought the INFERNO hardcover when I pimped it on my blog way back when amazon offered it at a real bargain price or who opted for the ESSENTIAL version. They were all numbstruck by the sheer amount of absolutely important things for the x - teams that happen. Most of them can´t understand why it was never released in Germany and neither can I.

But that´s not what I wanted to discuss in this post since the mysteries behind german comic book publishing have baffled the wise ones ( as well as those with simple common sense ) for centuries. Coming back to the pocket books by Condor all german readers love ( not really ) I want to point out that it hasn´t been easy to find out which parts of the INFERNO crossovers have been published in Germany. Which should be easy, right ?

Just look for the ones that have the corresponding covers from the US issues and that´s that. Well, it´s not as simple. You see, some of the pocket books really did have the same covers as the original version.

On others they didn´t even bother with the original covers and just took some images from the comic to make their own cover, oh the humanity !

And sometimes they redid the cover so extensively that it´s almost unrecognizable. Here is the cover to SPECTACULAR SPIDER - MAN 148

and this is what was left after the guys at Condor had their way with it :

They look like two totally unrelated covers if it weren´t for the identical tombstones. Everything else was taken out from the original cover and they filled it up with other stuff like Hawkeye fighting some villain. Oy.

Which might have been the back up story, because back then they used anything they could get their hands on to fill those 48 pages. Another reason why they made their own cover may have been that they thought the original cover was too scary for german readers. Also you don´t want to land on the Index of Writings Harmful to Young Persons, which happens very quickly here in Germany so most publishers exercise a form of self censorship before they can get censored. Germans are big on censorship.

But back to the INFERNO storyline and how it was published in Germany. While the main story is still unpublished here to this very day big parts of the crossovers did see the light of day in various scattered publications. Unfortunately most of it was in the form of pocket books where you could not see much of the art and the text was cut to 30 percent of the original content - at least. So even if you have read the german version it´s still worth getting the omnibus to finally see the art in good reproduction and to be able to read the story in its entirety. Not to mention the parts that we never got in Germany like the issues of EXCALIBUR or POWER PACK.


Now, when we last left the Avengers - there were no Avengers ! Jarvis had his solo action ( or was about to get some ), the Avengers were still very much disbanded and out of business while Steve Rogers a.k.a The Captain just jumped into the brawl to get his hands on a few demon delinquents.

Like I already said in my last post about the INFERNO CROSSOVERS, the very nature of the Avengers dictates that they redefine themselves from time to time by splitting up, changing their roster or even ceasing to exist for short periods of time. But you always know that the Avengers will be back to fight those foes no single superhero can withstand.

So it´s no big surprise that issue 299 starts immediately sowing the seeds for what shall be one of the shortest teams of Avengers. Because two of the members never make it beyond issue 300. I´m talking about Reed and Sue Richards who return to the Fantastic Four as soon as the crisis with Franklin is averted. Which I found a brilliant way to bring in Marvel´s first family : the demons are abducting babies and who is the most powerful infant in the Marvel universe ? Franklin Richards. Although he´s not abducted by demons ( at least not at first ) but by Nanny and the Orphan Maker, two villains who are not really popular with the Marvel readership.

And speaking about guys who weren´t popular I don´t think many Avenger readers remember the horny guy Walt Simonson introduced in this issue. What was his name again ? Oh yes, Gilgamesh ( I had to look it up ).

He was one of the Eternals who had been absent so long from Earth that everybody had forgotten about him. Which was why he was called The Forgotten One and we have Reed to thank for naming him Gilgamesh.

Gilgamesh has never gotten much fans and he´s always on the list of most insignificant Avengers members or The Top Ten Avengers who will never make it to the Big Leagues . It´s not only the name that gets associated with one of the worst CGI movies it´s also having one of the ugliest costumes ever. And then there´s all the pathos surrounding him. I think the only ones who could make such a character work would be Keith Giffen and J. M. DeMatteis if they used the angle that people would keep forgetting him, a gimmick they already employed to great effect in the METAL MEN back up series which ran in Keith Giffen´s DOOM PATROL.

They had a new member called Copper and they always forgot about her. They either forgot her completely or forgot where she was supposed to be or what she said and sometimes even her name. The series was just full of brilliant ideas and I have to say I´m a little pissed that I bought all the issues of DOOM PATROL to read it - only to learn later on that the Metal Man parts were released as part of the DC COMICS PRESENTS line.

Which is a really great reprint line if you want to get your hands on a big chunk of reading material cheap. They have Mark Farmer´s and Alan Davis´ SUPERBOY`S LEGION, issues of SUPERMAN ADVENTURES, THE KENTS, LEGION OF SUPER - HEROES and T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents.

There´s even an issue which contains the first 4 issues of Gene Colan´s and Marv Wolfman´s NIGHT FORCE series which I just had to get as a Gene Colan fan. Another series I have to look for in Erlangen. Sigh.

In any case, you just have to check out METAL MEN by Keith Giffen, J. M. DeMatteis and Kevin Maguire. I hate to say it but the series is only half as hilarious without his pencils. I´m not kidding, there are some parts done by guest artists and they are not as good as the real deal. This book has my highest recommendation and at eight bucks it doesn´t cost the world.

And I´m afraid that´s all we have time for Today. I thought this would be a quick post to write because I already had all the pictures I needed and then I go into all this other stuff that wasn´t scheduled. Just typical.

Anyway, we´ll have to continue with the INFERNO CROSSOVERS in the next part where we will talk more about the Avengers, their new roster with the horny guy and issue 300, which was a Big 64 Page Spectacular.

So that was the post for the big 8th year anniversary of this blog. I thought it would be more about the Inferno issues instead of german cover crimes, the Metal Men and Night Force but that´s how it goes.

Last year I didn´t get to write a post on the anniversary - in fact I didn´t manage to write the whole month of April - so I don´t know how the stats compare to last year. What I DO know is that I finally managed to crack the 1,000 clicks per day bar ( twice already ) and that I also just went over 750,000 page views. Also I think that the quality as well as the regularity of my posts have improved. Or at least haven´t deteriorated which isn´t too bad either. I just wish I could have enjoyed it more.

Okay, enough with the self centered BS, here are the usual links which this time are all over the place - just like this post. A DISPENSABLE LIST OF COMIC READS has Recommended Reads : Metal Man for all those who don´t know where to begin reading ( they also recommend The Brave and the Bold 187 which I mentioned in my last Jim Aparo post ) and there´s another review at the G33K Life blog. At least I think that´s the name. I also want to mention THE RAGING FANBOY blog where I found the bit with Doc Magnus and Platinum. SCANS DAILY has a post on Night Force 8 , that provided the cover I posted here and RAGGED CLAWS NETWORK has a post with scans from issue 4 . The post covers the announcement of a NIGHT FORCE trade in 2011 that was pushed back to 2012 and hasn´t been heard of since. At least to my knowledge. What´s up with that DC ?

Since a lot of Todays post has been about german comics I want to pimp a new german comic show on YouTube. The name is Geekplauze and my brother made me aware of it. Man, if he continues with this I would have to pay him royalties if I earned any money with this. Of course I picked the video about the controversy of Power Girl´s missing boob window.

So I didn´t manage to do my 450th post on the big anniversary but I think with any luck I can still do something special for that occasion. It´s only two posts away and I already have something in mind although it depends on my latest order from amazon arriving on time. For now I want to thank my readers for the last 8 years, I hope you had fun reading my ramblings and here´s the promised video from Comicplauze with some graphic novel reviews and - most important - Power Girl and her boob window. Enjoy !

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