Sunday, November 09, 2014

I´m back among the living and it feels great

Sounds ominous, I know, but since I mentioned all the trouble I had since July I should let my readers know when things are improving. That is only fair and it also gives me a chance to address a few things in one post.

So first things first, I finally got notice from the jobcenter. They sent me a letter and as wonders never cease I´m now officially unemployed and I don´t even had to get to court to get what is rightfully mine by the law.

I guess now I have to go by the ALZheimers to drop them a little present since they were extremely helpful with my application for unemployment assistance. And when I say ALZheimers I mean the people from the ALZ in Ludwigsburg which is short for Arbeitslosenzentrum, kind of the UHC the Unemployment Help Center. You know, UHC is a really awful acronym. Who wants to go to the uhc people ? How about HUGO instead which stands for Help for Unemployed Grunts Office or just Help for Unemployed Grunts which would be HUG, and wouldn´t that be nice ? Come on, who doesn´t need a hug from time to time ? Or how about Headquarters for Out of Work Individuals ( HOWIE ) or Laid Off Logistics which would become .... LOL ? .... okay, I´m giving this acronym thing way too much thought. 

What all this blabbering means is that I now will get money from the state and that I´m now officially unemployed. At least until the end of January 2015 which is how long this lasts. As I turned in my application around August that´s the month when it starts and since you apparently only get unemployment assistance for the following six months I guess I will have to make an application for the continuation of it. I just have to find out when the earliest date is so I can submit the necessary papers in time.

On Monday I will have to pay the offices of my health insurance company another visit to find out if I´m now officially receiving health care again.

The trip down there is very taxing for me because of my bad knee but it is easier to get results than if I try to do that stuff over the telephone.

And I have a good excuse to leave the house. Then, IF I´m health insured again and IF I can go to the hospital without any further complications I have to get in contact with the clinic in Markgröningen and find out if I can just make another date for surgery or if they have to do all the x - rays and MRIs all over again since more than four months have passed since I did the last ones. After I have sorted that out there´s surgery and then rehab which will probably be about three months and in between I´ll have to send a notice with the date of the operation and how long I will be incapacitated to the people from the jobcenter. And even if I can get a new date for surgery quickly I will have to send the papers to continue receiving unemployment assistance somewhere in all this stuff. So that´s another big mountain ahead of me - or rather a few mountains - but at least I managed to climb the first one and it´s about time. No kidding.

Speaking about time, it has been quite some time since my last post so you might want to know what I have been up to. It´s not as if I haven´t tried to do a new post this week but every time I was ready to do so either the internet connection was not working or it was already too late and I would not have gotten any sleep. Which is a nice segueway to what I did all Monday because I went down to the cellar to get my old matress.

Now a few weeks back my Mother insisted on buying me a new mattress based on information provided by my brother  - unbeknownst to me. It seems that he told her that my old mattress was a mess and that I needed a new one. I have no idea how my brother came to this solution or how he had this insight into my personal life which I obviously missed since I had the impression my mattress was fine. That shows you how much I know.

The next time I want to know something about myself I´ll just have to ask my brother : he´s obviously better informed than me in that regard.

Anyway, we ordered the new mattress ( yes, the internet is facilitating our lives a lot ) but the new mattress is a bit too small for my bed and too soft. When I sit on it I sink in a lot and if I´m laying on one side it´s like lying on an inclined plane. It´s almost like a water bed but without the water. Let´s just say that I haven´t gotten a good night´s sleep ever since I got the new mattress so on Monday I finally decided that enough was enough, I went down to the cellar and got my old mattress back.

Which is the reason that I spent all day cleaning up my room since I don´t clean the place where my bed stands very often. And putting new sheets on the bed. My Mom is now using the new mattress, she sleeps very well on it and I have spent a lot of this week catching up on missed sleep.

Speaking about catching up, two posts ago I mentioned that I´m trying to catch up on ARROW and I have finally finished with all the new episodes. So not only am I caught up on the episodes airing now here in Germany but I´m several episodes ahead so I know what´s coming. But I´m glad that I first saw the episodes in the original version because a lot of the german voices sound very bland compared to the originals, especially Slade Wilson who has a very manly and distinctive voice - being australian secret service - sounds very dull here. Now when I first saw his costume on the tv show I instantly knew where DC´s main focus with the NEW 52 went. Because the costume looks good on the show and it´s basically the same one as in the comics but in the comics that costume sucks. Sorry, but when you look at the original design for Deathstroke, The Terminator by George Perez it´s one of the best costumes in comic history EVER.

But the one he has in the comics now, looking at that abomination is just painful. So I´m going out on a limb here and saying that when the NEW 52 was planned the main focus in designing the costumes was that they look good in movies or on tv shows - or even as toys - and forget the comics.

Another important factor seems to have been to pay as few as possible to the heirs of the original Superman creators Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster. I guess the phrase " and any distinctive likeness " is the key operating term here because otherwise I don´t know why DC has systematically changed everything about Superman from his looks to his history to his supporting cast and now even his powers. I think it´s a sign for creative abandoning that only three years of the new version they feel the need to give him new powers and a new look. Now that might be because their efforts to revamp the character into something they don´t have to pay for has so far proven unsuccessful in court but it also might just be the guys at DC running out of ideas since giving Superman a new costume is not exactly a novel idea and I´m not talking about Zap Superman or Supernova here.

Not that the guys from Disney are trying any harder to come up with new stuff. So far the whole TIME IS RUNNING OUT deal is kind of ridiculous when they constantly announce new projects for 2015. Or old projects.

I mean so far they announced SECRET WARS, CIVIL WAR, HOUSE OF M, AGE OF ULTRON, PLANET HULK, ARMOR WARS, INFINITY GAUNTLET, OLD MAN LOGAN, AGE OF APOCALYPSE - none of these are new stories. What comes next ? ACTS OF VENGEANCE ? ATLANTIS ATTACKS ? THE CROSSING ? THE CLONE SAGA ? Okay, Dale Keown did the teaser picture for FUTURE IMPERFECT but I would be really surprised if he also did the interior work.

And let´s face it, the reason why FUTURE IMPERFECT is such a great comic is the writing of Peter David and the art of George Perez, and while Peter David is currently working for Disney George Perez is doing his SIRENS stuff so you won´t see pages like this on the new version.

Another thing that Disney has already announced for 2015 is X - MEN ´92 which seems to be a rehash of the X - Men from the year 1992. So what ?

All the good titles like X - MEN FOREVER or ALL NEW X - MEN had already been taken ? Although basically there´s nothing all new about this from the look of things but rather this would be the ALL OLD X - MEN which doesn´t exactly have the same ring of excitement about it. And what will this be all about, anyway ? With X - MEN FOREVER Chris Claremont wrote the X - Men series he initially wanted to write before Jim Lee took over, although I´m guessing the whole killing of Wolverine thing was something new because they would have never let him kill off Wolverine back then. We all know that Logan is one of the biggest cashcows for Disney and they would have to be really desperate to even try to pull such a stunt because no comic reader will believe they are really going to kill him off for good. Which means those mouthbreathers are now desperate enough to do it.

But that´s not the worst of it. I can take Storm´s old costume, in fact it´s one of my favorites, I can take Rogue´s weirdo bodysuit and Jubilee not as a vampire ? That´s a good thing. But why the Gambit ? Always with the Gambit. He´s lame, he sucks and while some people think that it was harsh that the X - Men left him stranded in Antarctica when they found out that he was one of the main architects behind the Mutant Massacre I think he got off lightly. The X - Men should have terminated his ass for good, especially Logan. Wolverine should have ended the guy. But he didn´t which cost us decades of suffering and when I say " we " I mean me. I guess Gambit´s popular with Disney so again with the Gambit.

With Disney going back to all those old stories I decided to do the same and I am currently re - reading the INFINITY stuff I mentioned two posts ago. Which means I have finished with the WARLOCK reprints and am still reading the SILVER SURFER issues before starting on INFINITY GAUNTLET.

So THE STRANGE DEATH OF ADAM WARLOCK will be the topic of one of my upcoming DEATH IN COMICS posts. One of the main reasons why I wanted to read this stuff again ( besides the fact that it will be covered in am upcoming movie ) was to decide if buying the INFINITY GAUNTLET omnibus is worth it. Initially I thought George Perez had quit in the middle of issue 3 but he did finish that issue and also the first pages of issue 4. So there is more George Perez in there than I thought. It also is one of the bigger omnibuses with over 1200 pages which is the least you can expect for a 125 dollar book. Now is it just me or has Disney gone crazy with the prices for their omnibuses ? I mean a lot of people are bashing amazon but let´s be realistic here for a moment : who can really afford to pay 125 bucks for a comic ? I´m not sure that without places like amazon where you can get such a book for 75 bucks - at a good day - they would not sell that good. And they have to sell or disney wouldn´t make so damn much of them. I mean if they put ACTS OF VENGEANCE TIE INS and ATLANTIS ATTACKS in an omnibus they will put anything in an omnibus.

And it´s not only the omnibuses that have gone up, all hardcover prices have increased. I mean the X - MEN INFERNO CROSSOVER and the AGE OF ULTRON books are both priced at 75 bucks but while the first one has 600 pages the second one has only 500 pages and when I look at them on the shelf porn the INFERNO book is twice as thick since it has better paper.

Right now I´m thinking about getting some new omnibuses as it seems I have to buy my presents for my saints day and my birthday myself since it looks like nobody else is going to do it. Or at least get me a decent one.

But for the moment none of the ones I have my eye on like SPIDER - MAN BY ROGER STERN, UNCANNY X - MEN 2 or the before mentioned INFINITY GAUNTLET omnibus are at reasonable prices. So I´ll wait a bit since there is enough on my plate I still have not read : hardbacks 2 to 4 of BATMAN AND ROBIN, THE INFINITY RELEVATION ( although I might wait with that until I have the THANOS ANNUAL which comes before ), the finale of AVENGERS ACADEMY ( here I also have to read the two hardcovers before this ) and I haven´t even started on AVENGERS ASSENBLED by Kurt Busiek and George Perez or the IRON MAN or NEW TEEN TITANS omnibuses.

Speaking of George Perez, another comic I thought about buying was the DC COMICS CLASSIC LIBRARY hardcover of his Justice League story and the only reasons why I haven´t is that  for some reason DC put it out in two parts and they are both highly overpriced at 40 bucks for a book with less than 200 ( in the case of the first one even less than 180 ) pages. Now I regret not buying the spansih edition since it was one volume and only cost 35 EUROS. I´m also thinking about getting volumes 4 to 6 of the CRISIS ON MULTIPLE EARTHS trades since there is also George Perez artwork in there and a crossover between the JLA, the JSA and the Legion of Super Heroes but right now I´m not sure. The reviews at amazon are less than exited and I´m not sure if the nostalgia factor is big enough to tide me over the bad writing and art in most of the issues collected here.

Before finishing ( it´s already almost one o´clock ) I want to get back to the tv series I´m watching because there are a lot of comic related ones.

Like I said I have finished with the new episodes of ARROW and I have also seen the first four episodes of the THE FLASH and the pilot episode of CONSTANTINE. I guess I have to swallow that the Flash in the series is not Wally West since DC does its best to ignore him but aside from that the series is really good and they have the original tv Flash John Wesley Ship playing Barry Allen´s Dad. I´m not so keen on the whole retroactive having his mom killed by the Reverse Flash but that´s the new backstory they come up with in the comics to make Barry Allen interesting so that´s naturally what the NEW 52 inserts in the tv version. With Constantine they could have made him a bit more badass but ever since Hollywood did their parallel version of it I have been waiting that somebody does the real version since none of that appeared in the Keanu Reeves movie.

And since we´re on the subject of tv series I wanted to mention that I pimped the post about Wonder Woman Lynda Carter back in 2011. At first I was just looking for a certain animated GIF to add since I can´t find where I put the disc with the clips from the Wonder Woman tv series. But then I found lots and lots of GIFs and pictures and it took really long to finish the post ( I think it was around six o´clock this morning since the internet connection was acting up for hours just after I had started it ).

I haven´t done a new post on her the last few years since I didn´t have enough material but now there just might be a new post on the horizon.

And in the meantime you can check out the old repimped post about CULT SIREN LYNDA CARTER as Wonder Woman. You know, with the Hollywood version of Xena Wonder Woman appearing in the new Superman vs Batman / Justice League movie it might be a good time to do a post, since Lynda Carter is still the iconic Wonder Woman for so many people.  

There are no links for this post but I should post the original version of the black and white cover by Arthur Adams, JUSTICE LEAGUE 148 which is one of the issues in volume 4 of the Crisis on Multiple Earths trades.

Now since I ended the post with Wonder Woman Lynda Carter the first video is a clip from the episode I was talking about earlier. I tried to find the series on DVD but all I could find on amazon were imports and since they are not verified by the german FSK there might be some problems.

Now the clip is from the episode THE QUEEN & THE THIEF from season 2 where Wonder Woman helped a cat burglar steal a diamond or something. She was dangling upside down from a rope and while she was trying to open a safe or something her breasts followed gravity and slowly slid out of her top. I waited to see them totally uncovered but every time they showed the cat burglar and then zoomed back they were in the top again. Then they kept on sliding out but in the next shot they were back in.

Damn you, evil tv censorship. Well, despite that it is a really sexy scene.
And Lynda Carter DOES have an incredibly sexy set of gams on her.

And here´s the full clip in the best quality I could find :

I mentioned the Silver Surfer and the Infinity Gauntlet and one of the tv series I´m watching is the animated Silver Surfer series which I haven´t watched before. I don´t know if I wasn´t interested at the time it aired in Germany or if I just missed it but it´s not as bad as I thought and the theme music is really catchy. Of course like all adaptions by a tv studio they changed a lot of stuff and they also omitted the Fantastic Four.

So things haven´t changed that much since then - but the art looks like it´s inspired by Jack Kirby. Since I only found the first seven episodes I´ll have to watch the rest on YouTube like this one, the final episode in which Thanos appears who is one of the Silver Surfer´s main adversaries here.

The last video is one where I´m probably the last one at the party again since I found numerous posts on this. It´s been a while since I did a post on cosplay, mainly because every time I start preparing my stuff for the big Yaya Han post I get too worked up to keep the post SAFE FOR WORK.

Not that the video of Bianca Beauchamp cosplaying as Harley Quinn is any less dangerous. But I wanted to post it in case readers haven´t seen it.

I must say that I never was a big fan of Harley Quinn in the comics ( liked her in the cartoon ) since the first thing they did when they gave her her own series was to change everything about her but Bianca has won me over. I have seen a few versions of Harley cosplay but this is be the best.

Like I said the full video is not something I could put on the post but at least here I can post the censored version. There is also the uncensored version on YouTube but you will have to find that one for yourself. What I am posting is this link to the video on vimeo where you can download the clip in different formats and sizes. Sorry, but it´s the censored version. 

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1 comment:

Terry Hooper-Scharf said...

Carter's stunt double in the series was "well endowed", too. Apparently during filming fight scenes filming had to stop so she could "pop them back in"!