Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Instead of D - Gruppe part 2 : a rant about tv series and more german superheroes

Today, before we start where we left off Yesterday I wanted to mention three female celebrity birthdays. For once because it´s not that often that you have three in a row and especially three that are connected with pop culture. The first one is Michelle Trachtenberg

who turns 26 and is of course best known for playing the sister of BUFFY which had various comic adaptions and even continued the last seasons in comicform.

A few of them were even written by the series mastermind Joss Whedon who also did a definite X - Men run with John Cassaday starting off ASTONISHING X - MEN.

In fact the series hasn´t reached a comparable level of quality ever since. Besides that I always have to laugh when her name is shown in the credits because it just sounds funny to me ( trachten = german traditional clothes, berg = mountain ) . What can I say ? I´m a weird person and I get my perks whereever I can. I also laugh when a name like David Krumholtz or Josh Eisendraht appears on screen.

Anyway, I was a big fan of the series and I had to tape all of the episodes. Because back then me and my two brothers all had jobs so somebody had to record the episodes so that we could see them when we had time for it. And of course the best way to record them with the vcr was to do it while watching it because that way you could stop it when the commercial break began and continue once it was over. That way you could skip the commercials and you could get an additional episode on the tape. I have all the episodes but of course now all the tapes I recorded for my brothers and me are labeled as " mine " because someone has to get rid of them.

Despite being a BUFFY fan I never read any of the comics not even the ones by Tim Sale. I was really curious about the " exclusive to comic " seasons but it never ended up on my reading pile. Maybe now with less DC books on my pull list - since most of what I read has been canceled or rebooted - I can finally track them down.

Today is also the 35th anniversary of Emily Deschanel, best known for playing bestselling Smithsonian squint Temperance Brennan on BONES

where she co - stars with David Boreanaz who played Angel, first on BUFFY and then in the spin - off series ANGEL. One of the best things about ANGEL - besides featuring the hot Carisma Carpenter - was the title song by Darling Violetta which was one of the things I missed most between seasons ( open in new window ). Like BUFFY I taped all episodes and now have to get rid of them somehow.

ANGEL of course also had various adaptions and continued the adventures in comic form and likewise I never read any of them. There´s even one by John Byrne that´s on my Christmas list.

And Today´s third celebrity birthday is Claudia Black ( 39 )

who was on the tv series BEASTMASTER, HERCULES, XENA, FARSCAPE, STARGATE, had a cameo on DRESDEN FILES and starred in the RIDDICK. She´s also a voice actress in the video games LORDS OF EVERQUEST, GOD OF WAR, PROJECT SYLPHEED, UNCHARTED 2 and 3, MASS EFFECT 2 and 3 and on the upcoming JUSTICE LEAGUE - DOOM animated feature ( as Cheetah ).

I have to say while I started watching all new episodes of STARGATE I lost track of it somewhere along the way and never quite caught up. There were some episodes of STARGATE ATLANTIS I watched while in Spain but since I was coming in near the finale it just felt kind of meh. FARSCAPE on the other hand is one sci fi series where I was really excited and I watched the first few episodes and it all went down the toilet very fast. To my recollection almost nothing that happened made any sense, the characters were two - dimensional ( in the best cases ) and you never understood their motivations.

Right now FARSCAPE is shown on ANIXE and STARGATE is in constant reruns on TELE 5 at least three times a day so - who knows ? I might finally catch up on the episodes.

DRESDEN FILES on the other hand is one of THE best tv series ever and if you have the possibility you must watch it. The series was broadcasted in Spain and my brother bought the first season ( and only season you bastards ! ) on DVD so that I could watch all the episodes I missed and there´s only one word to describe it : pure genius. This is as good as you are going to get in front of a tv set with your clothes on.

If you don´t know the series, it´s produced by Nicolas Cage and based on the Harry Dresden novels by Jim Butcher ( just the right name for this gory line of work ) of which a few have been adapted to the comicbook format. So far I have seen one in the german version but because the art was not really good I didn´t buy it. If you are interested you can find more info about the tv series here ( german info ).

Man, first BUFFY then ANGEL and now DRESDEN FILES, this post is really all about supernatural tv series. Which is kind of fitting since October is the month of werewolfes, ghouls and vampires, you know - Halloween.


In my last post I talked about german superheroes and there are two I didn´t mention : one I forgot and one I didn´t even know about. The latter being DER ENGEL ( THE ANGEL ) by Tomppa a.k.a. Thomas Leopold the winner of the Stan Lee Foundation and Todd McFarlane creative invite on talenthouse.com published by THENEXTART.

Lately I haven´t been to many german comic conventions and I don´t think I´ve seen it at the Stuttgarter Comicbörse, which is one of the few comic get - togethers in the nearer area I can attend. Like I said in my last post, I´m not a german comic historian and as I didn´t claim that the list I presented was complete in any way it might be excused that I was without a clue in that regard.

The first issue came out in 2009 and the second issue was released in June 2010 with three issues pending to complete the first five issue storyarc. According to the webpage the story takes place in

Berlin in the year 2029. The townscape has changed completely. Violence in the streets is the order of business. In this melting pot THE ANGEL embarks on his own crusade for revenge but he´s still unaware of the conspiracy, it´s extent and that he will soon be entangled by it.....

There are previews for issue 1 and issue 2 on my comics.de and as far as I could see the art is pretty solid. They also have an interview with Thomas Leopold which sadly is only available in german, sorry. Here is a video where you can see him doing a complete page for the comic :

The german superhero comic I DID read was DER UNHEIMLICHE KAKERLAK ( The uncanny Cockroach ) and I think one of the reasons why it wasn´t on my original list is that it is also part superhero spoof.

Not that it doesn´t do that in a trashy and entertaining kind of way but whenever I´m confronted with such an example of real talent meeting an interesting new premise I wonder how the comic would have turned out if they had taken the matter more serious. I know that not every writer can be the next Grant Morrison but I think that shouldn´t be for lack of trying.

Despite this shortcoming the comic by Undergroundcomix ( which is a hint why they may have felt the need to add a subversive note to the comic ) is quite entertaining in a trashy kind of way and the pocketbook that presents all the stories that have come out so far in black and white isn´t too expensive with 124 pages for 10 bucks. It has a lot of stuff I like to see in comics like sewers, superheroes in sewers, alligators in sewers and superheroes fighting alligators in sewers.

The book has various artists but the pages by Steff Murschetz stand out.

Steff was introduced to a brighter german audience when he did ROCKN ROLL PATROL, an Adults Only funny book about a female rock band that always ends up in some kind of sexual hijinks.

The stories that are collected in DER UNHEIMLICHE KAKERLAK pocketbook have been released online before and evolve around hobo Gordon Sander whose schizophrenic other personality is Der Kakerlak, a superhero whose headquarters is in the sewers. The character of the Kakerlak shows clear influences of other weird superheroes like The Tick or Badger while being his own twisted creature. Various villains try to take him out but he manages to foil their attempts.

What may be a bit confusing for readers is that while Der unheimliche Kakerlak previews for issue 1 , issue 2 and issue 3 are in color the printed version is in black and white. For interested parties there is an Der unheimliche Kakerlak review on Splashcomics ( german ) as well as an interview with Steff Murschetz ( german ) about Undergroundcomix and a drawing tutorial with Steff Murschetz .

So it´s once again time to wrap things up because I can barely keep my eyes open and I´m making more typos by the minute and I didn´t even get to continue on the subject of D - GRUPPE. But the post is already pretty long and I think it may get even longer once I get to re - read the Kakerlak comic.

As I have already embedded the videos of the things I talked about in the post Todays video at the end of the post is FACK SE ENERGIESPARLAMPE ( Fuck the energy - saving bulb ) by austrian rap duo Zwa Voitrottln ( two imbeciles ). Watch it, get addicted to it, spread it !

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


Geier said...

Auch nicht schlecht "Johnny Depp"! *rofl*
Wenn du deutsch auf die Sprache erweiterst solltest du "Tell" von David Boller nicht vergessen.

Terry Hooper-Scharf said...

Neat new look to the site!

SUBZERO said...

Don´t get used to it, it´s just for Halloween. I just hope I can get it back to normal afterwards !

Anonymous said...

Great! Thanks for the share!