Saturday, February 27, 2016

Today is Norm Breyfogle Day : the Return !

Since Today is Norm Breyfogle´s 56th ammiversary I spent most of the day looking for new things to post. First I checked February last year but I didn´t get to do a post on his birthday because of my own health issues.

Speaking about health issues I should address that Norm Breyfogle is still recovering from the stroke he suffered although I could not find a definite account of his current condition in 2016. I mentioned this in my post on the Phantom Stranger last Halloween and also the LEGENDS OF THE DARK KNIGHT : NORM BREYFOGLE hardcover that DC has put out to help Norm.

Like I said, I don´t have any information how he is right now but if you have already bought this and still want to help Norm in some way there is currently a petition underway at CHANGE.ORG for Marvel to reprint Norm Breyfogle´s work in a collected edition which you can sign and share too.

This would also be a good idea for Disney to do, not only to get some goodwill from their readers - which they desperately need with the stuff they are currently putting out - but also because it makes good business sense. From the business perspective there is definitely a demand for his work right now and you could easily collect all his Marvel work in one big book. There is also the fact that he did a three issue HELLCAT series and I think the way Disney is trying to cash in on anything related to their cinematic universe or their television universe it´s not unreasonable to assume they want to capitalize on Patsy Walker´s appearance on ALIAS.

Now since my last post on Norm Breyfogle´s birthday I have managed to track down and read most of the books on my wanted list. I got all his issues of PRIME, the few BLOODSHOT issues he did, I think I got all his issues of THE SPECTRE and LOBO issue 51. There might be some issues from OF BITTER SOULS I don´t know but besides the first trade I could not find any material. The same goes for the DANGER`S DOZEN series.

Lately I have been occupied with reprint series so I wanted to see if there are german comics that contain any Norm Breyfogle BATMAN stuff but he got on the bat books at the tailends of when Ehapa folded so there are only a few issues that made it into the actual BATMAN TASCHENBUCH.

Now thanks to the machine lettering and the font size not a lot of the original text survived but the binding on those is surprisingly resilient.

I still have most of my old Taschenbücher from Ehapa and while the older ones are more a loose leaf collection the " newer " ones hold up pretty good. Those are not rare so you should be able to find them at a good price and they are definitely worth their money. Especially the BATMAN SUPER DREI which was Ehapa´s way of recycling old material by sticking three previously published pocket books together. I´ve been looking through those to find some Norm Breyfogle stuff but since he was only in two Taschenbücher to begin with I didn´t find much. One of these days I´ll have to do a post on the BATMAN SUPER DREI comics and also the companion book SUPERMAN SUPER DREI ( one of those even contained Alan Moore´s great Whatever happened to the Man of Tomorrow ? ).

One book I´m always forgetting is the SHADOW OF THE BAT series and Ehapa published at least the first issues with Norm Breyfogle art in their Ehapa Comic Collcetion line. They are in the regular american comic book format and you can find them at a reasonable price at any comic shop.

So after Ehapa closed its doors the next publisher to do DC comics in Germany was the Norbert Hethke Verlag. This was right when I was doing my military service in Munich because of which I had access to a real comic shop - JÜRGEN`S COMIC SHOP - for the first time in my life.

While my time at the Deutsche Bundeswehr was not my favorite of times comic wise it was one of my absolute highlights. There were three outlets available to me, the first one was the aforementioned comic shop, where I went as soon as we were finished for the day. They had the actual stuff and a lot of american comics with a lot of back issues and I spend a lot of time there. Then there was a newsstand on the way to the comic shop or back to the barracks where they had american comics from the last three months or so. And finally there was a newsstands at the train station in Munich where I passed every time I came in to the barracks or went home. They had older issues so I went there to look for issues of series that I had discovered in the other two shops which they didn´t have. So there were some books where I got the Hethke comics but most of them were books where the american issues were not available anymore like the new Justice League or Green Arrow - Longbow Hunter. With the bat books I found a lot of Norm Breyfogle´s issues with the american comics so I didn´t get a lot of the Hethke Bände but if you want to read Norm Breyfogle´s issues in german this is where you will find the bulk of it.

And I guess that´s it. Neither Dino nor Panini has gone back to that particular period of the bat periodicals and I haven´t seen any of those books in the official DC collection Hachette is publishing in Germany.

There is one last bat related mini series I have to mention before ending the post ( I´m having trouble keeping my eyes open and my laptop is starting to act up ) : ANARKY. I´m always planning to get the trades but because I have some of the issues in german and I can´t never find them I keep putting it off. This first mini series is highly recommended and it was published in Germany by Dino Verlag in issue 6 of BATMAN SPECIAL.  

There are some Superman stories by Norm Breyfogle in Dino´s SUPERMAN issue 60, issue 70 and SUPERMAN SPECIAL 11 and the Captain America story from MARVEL FANFARE in Condor´s HULK COMIC TASCHENBUCH 23. 

And with that we have all of Norm Breyfogle´s publications in german covered but I don´t want to end without a few samples of his great art.

There are also a few links I have to add to the post : Dan Greenfield at the 13TH DIMENSION has a 13 cover salute to Norm Breyfogle who takes up five days of COMIC BOOK RESOURCES´ Year of the Artist archive with entries on MARVEL FANFARE 29 ( thanks for the Captain America page ), WHISPER 10 , BATMAN ( D´uh ! ),  OF BITTER SOULS 2 and HELLCAT 2 .

And speaking about Hellcat, you can see a lot of Norm´s art on that series in this post from Jason Levine on AROUSING GRAMMAR which has a few more posts on Hellcat. There´s one post about the MARVEL DIVAS series which I did not read because they had to play the " I have cancer " card. Can writers please come up with something else to make characters " interesting " ? ( Well, apparently not since they used the same schtick to validate female Thor ) Or at least find a disease that´s not so clichée ?

Also I found it weird that Firestar got cancer from her superpowers. Not that it´s not hypothetically possible but it is not possible. Because Hank Pym fixed this when she and Justice where Avengers - in Training during Kurt Busiek and George Perez´ run on AVENGERS. So even if she got sick from her powers wouldn´t it make more sense to first consult Hank Pym to find out what went wrong instead of going straight to a regular cancer clinic ? Unless the writer didn´t do his homework ( and who does this nowadays ? ) and didn´t know that this problem had already been fixed.

Since Tomorrow is Milton Caniff´s birthday and I´m pretty sure I will not be able to do a post ( come on, even I have to rest ) we start the video section with the first part of the 1940s serial of Terry And The Pirates.

One of the things I always hated about Frank Miller´s Batman Year One is that he got rid of the yellow oval of the Batsymbol. I know his reasoning for doing this but for me it´s a really ridiculous reason because on one side you can´t blame a company for trying to copyright their product.

Comics are a business and to think otherwise is just deluding yourself. Besides - the yellow oval worked. It may have been invented for all the wrong reasons but it worked and getting rid of it just to bully your own personal viewpoint about creator rights on the rest of the world is petty. And if you see people on the street wearing Batman merchandise it´s ALWAYS the yellow Batsymbol - because they know this is the real Batman. So for me Norm Breyfogle´s Batman looked always more real than Batman drawn by a lot of other artists because he always had the right Batsymbol.

Since most of this post was about where you can find Norm Breyfogle´s comics in the german version here´s a video about where you can find these kinds of comics. Whoa, a real comic shop. Who´d have thunk, eh ?

Here´s Jessica Nigri cosplaying as GNAR from League of Legends not to be confused with the Legion of Legions from Grant Morrison´s brilliant Flex Mentallo comic. League of Legends is a MORP that I´m told is not an adult game although the cosplayers I´ve seen online do wear some very risqueé costumes ( Jessica Nigri has cosplayed as another character from League of Legends which looks like every horny male´s definition of sexy elf princess ). As always Jessica Nigri looks impeccable in both cases. 

We end the post with the next video of Dami Im on X Factor Australia ( I told you there were more coming ). I have decided to go in chronological order and here´s her first performance on the show where she got a standing ovation. And to think that she didn´t get through bootcamp.

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1 comment:

Terry Hooper-Scharf said...

Another good posting! Oh. GNAR is from League of Legends (I think I got that right). Nice Breyfogle art.