Entries Tagged as 'just fantastic'

art & entertainmentbooks & writing

Gatz and Gatsby

No Gravatar

The curtain rises on a dingy office. It could be the 1980’s: a man sits silently at an ancient computer screen and pushes buttons but nothing happens.  In frustration, he rifles through a box next to the computer, and finds there a copy of  F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. He begins reading aloud –  and gradually, without undue artifice, other co-workers come and go and assume various roles. Our original Office Man becomes Fitzgerald’s narrator, Nick Carraway, while his colleagues provide other dialogue. Thus adapted to the stage, the short novel unfolds over six hours like a brilliant origami of the layered contradictions in American life. [Read more →]

creative writing

Flash Gordon as told to Dale Arden Ch I: The Silent Bombs

No Gravatar

First, a note of thanks and recognition to my ghost writer. Oh, she does not like that but I do not like deceptions. Or not much. Besides which she is as well known as I am and she was there but I will tell it all as it happened to me and maybe if we put in some steamy parts she will consent to author those from her side. [Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: Batman No Man’s Land, volume one

No Gravatar

One of the great things about comics are alternate-reality scenarios. The No Man’s Land series, which spans four reasonably thick volumes, is an excellent specimen, offering most (if not all) of the significant Batman villains, while providing a fresh look at relatively stale heroes including Batman, Commissioner Gordon, Oracle, and Huntress.

[Read more →]

games

Just Fantastic: Dungeons and Dragons 4th Edition

No Gravatar

Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) is in its fourth edition (but fifth incarnation) since 1974. I’ve played three incarnations: 2nd, 3.5, and 4th. I’ve got to say that the fourth edition does one thing very well.

For anyone unfamiliar, a table top role-playing game (RPG), like D&D, uses a pen, character sheet(s), a series of books, and a set of dice. The set of dice consists of: 1 four-sided, 1 six-sided, 2 ten-sided, 1 twelve-sided, and 1 twenty-sided die. Dice are also abbreviated “D” as in D20 for a twenty-sided die. You might laugh at this now, but one day you’ll be in a comic shop on the wrong side of the tracks and knowing what a D20 is might help you make a saving throw against a band of asthmatic angry nerds. [Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: Pretty Penny Arcade

No Gravatar

Over the last decade Penny Arcade has been providing social commentary to a niche market over the Internet. I’ve been a fan since I was introduced to the comic in 2001. Their main focuses are video games and the surrounding culture, a truly vast and encompassing topic when you consider how little the Associated Press actually covers related issues other than addiction and violence. Gabe and Tycho, the artist’s and writer’s pen-names, are still making me and many other people laugh while making some good points.
[Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: Close to Home

No Gravatar

I don’t read newspapers. It’s not personal. I started reading on a computer when I was really young and never looked back. Consequently certain features never make it through my front door, specifically comic strips. So, when John McPherson’s Close to Home made its big debut in my hometown paper, which I assume it did at some point in the late 1990s, I was completely unaware. But January 2010, when I was sifting through the calendars in the 50% off bin at Barnes and Noble, I found a Close to Home calendar and bought it. My other option was a girl’s college survival guide. And I don’t need any beauty tips. [Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: Serenity, Vol. 1: Those Left Behind

No Gravatar

I read this graphic novel last night at Barnes and Noble while waiting for my friend to show up. It was short, about under 100 pages, mostly filled with gun fights and explosions. Yet, the experience was satisfying enough for me to seriously consider buying comics based on other canceled shows I enjoyed; specifically Futurama. [Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: Preacher, volume 5

No Gravatar

Yeah, there are some spoilers, but it won’t affect your read — trust me. For those of you not keeping score at home this is the fifth installment of the Preacher series by Garth Ennis. I’m reviewing them one at a time, which means there are four previous reviews. There’s a plot summary below and I apologize for any repeat material. I will say this — overall Preacher is the best graphic novel I’ve read so far. It’s a long and far-reaching storyline that demands a great deal of time, but is compelling enough to be easily remembered.
[Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: Preacher, volume 4

No Gravatar

Into every series a little rain must fall. And this one is a Tsunami of shit that splatters itself all over the awesome Preacher series. Now the good news is that you don’t need to read it. The volume addresses various back stories, which intrigued my curiosity until it made me want to tear the copy in half and flush it down the toilet one sheet at a time. Honestly, skip this volume.

[Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: Preacher, vol. 3

No Gravatar

Summary: We learn about Cassidy’s back story, which revolves around an Irish-English conflict. We see John Custer’s (Jesse’s father) Vietnam experiences. Jesse meets Genesis’ father, an angel, which was being held by The Grail. We meet the AllFather (head of The Grail) and the current descended of Jesus. Jesse rescues Cassidy. God shows up again. The Saint of Killers shows up again. There is a huge blood bath. Starr is coping with his new desires, which is freakin’ hilarious.

[Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: Yet More Zombies

No Gravatar

Marvel Zombies vs Army of Darkness is one of the great features of the comic book world: zany crossovers with no repercussions. The closest film has ever gotten is most likely Freddie vs. Jason, where two unrelated characters faced off just for shits and giggles. In all cases crossovers tend to foster an air of stupid but fun as explanations are rarely given and fan demand plots or actions generally occur.

[Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: Marvel Zombies

No Gravatar

Halloween is a tricky time for comics in general. There are horror elements in plenty of titles. And plenty of horror concepts that don’t have elements of the genre; for example, Buffy the Vampire Slayer noticeably lacks a fear of the unknown. So I’m going to stick with something simple — ZOMBIES! Marvel has released several universe wide zombie titles in the last few years. And this column and my next will explore two of those titles. [Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: Preacher, vol. 2

No Gravatar

I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic. I love this comic.

[Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: Preacher, vol. 1

No Gravatar

Possibly Vertigo’s most popular title, Preacher, written by Garth Ennis, ran for five years (1995-2000), it had 75 issues in total and some of the highest acclaim from pop culture a comic could get. Volume 1 is almost all expositional. While interesting and exciting I found myself actively trying to get through it. However, there is a light at the end of the tunnel because volume 2 is amazing.   [Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: Y the Last Man, vol. 1 & 2 — what it’s like starting a long series

No Gravatar

Y the Last Man, henceforth known as Y, is a long-running series that was greeted with amazing success. Critics loved it. Readers loved it. The parts I read floored me: I couldn’t put it down. The series won the Eisner Award in 2008 for Best Continuing Series. It was nominated for a Hugo. A few days ago I was in Barnes and Noble, saw the newest edition, and realized that I stopped trying to complete the series over a year ago — and wondered why. [Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: Ultimate Galactus Trilogy teeters on the fence

No Gravatar

Ultimate Galactus Trilogy is a dainty chode-licker. This retelling of a classic Marvel storyline does a nice job updating things and keeping it interesting.  Okay, I’m kidding. This book is a cosmic shit-heap. Marvel is a bunch of jack-offs for even considering retelling these archaic storylines. On the other hand, I really enjoyed reading it. [Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: The Big Book of Barry Ween, Boy Genius rocks

No Gravatar

This omnibus contains various mini-series featuring Barry Ween, a ten-year-old with an IQ of 350. The adventures are full of funny instances, classic science fiction plots, and tons of dirty language. I highly endorse this piece of art. [Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: Johnny the Homicidal Maniac: Director’s Cut

No Gravatar

Johnny the Homicidal Maniac is a comedy/serial killer book that explores morality and destiny. Its wild, almost incomprehensible drawings and plots are deranged. They twist back on each other in a terrifying gore-fest that ultimately left me feeling like I just read a piece of history. But it’s also funny and self-satirizing.

[Read more →]

books & writing

Just fantastic: Kid Eternity

No Gravatar

It’s a wonderful vision of hell stuffed with good ideas, but Kid Eternity left me unsatisfied.

I wanted to like this book. It’s the re-publication of the three-comic series from the early 1990s. Each comic was divided into two cantos. And it’s written by Grant Morrison, one of my favorite graphic authors, and the concept of a journey through his vision of hell sounded awesome. The basic premise is a tour through hell to resolve a crisis — there is a slight nod to Dante’s Inferno. All signs point to me having a massive uncontrollable nerd-gasm. But I never climaxed. [Read more →]

books & writing

Just Fantastic: Palestine

No Gravatar

I wish I had read this sooner.

Palestine, written and Drawn by Joe Sacco, is an odd sort of a graphic novel. It is almost 300 pages long and divided into only nine chapters. The chapters are fragmented adventures of a journalist who has set out to record his experiences in the form of a graphic novel. Sometimes the story goes on for twenty plus pages and sometimes the story is only a page long. And most oddly, there isn’t a lot of action. The cells are almost entirely filled with faces.  [Read more →]

Next Page »