Sunday, October 26, 2014

October 26, 2014: Vermont ComicCon

After an all day class yesterday, I spent the afternoon and evening visiting with The Armchair Squid and Drama Guy.  We watched next month's Mock Squid Soup movie, Space Battleship Yamoto (available for FREE on YouTube!) and had some good conversation and some good Chinese food. was Vermont ComicCon!  The Squids and Mocks met up and had a blast.  I'm at the point in my comic book collecting where there really isn't anything on my wish list.  I occasionally hear about a run or a series I missed that might be worth picking up.  But today was about random finds, artists and costumes!

I grabbed two Batman '66 comics for Logan, four random Star Trek issues (two John Byrne photo novels and two alternate reality issues) and a Red Sonja one shot.  For a buck a piece, I couldn't say no!

I also snagged all 5 issues of the Spider-man: With Great Power... mini-series for $2.00!

I spent some time exploring the work of a whole lot of artists!  I picked up a Doctor Who print by Blair Shedd from one of his recent Doctor Who comics and a smaller print from Vermont artist Lee Wakerly of the 12th Doctor.  I plan on displaying them both in my classroom.

Blair Shedd: Approximately 11" by 7"

Mr. Shedd signing his print

Lee Wakerley: Approximately 4" by 6"

Mr. Shedd also did TWO sketches!  One for my son and one for his friend!

Nan bought a limited run print from Mr. Shedd with a Vermont theme for the house!

And then the can see more on Nan's NEW site here!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Mock Squid Soup: Unbreakable: October 10, 2014

The Armchair Squid and I are once again hosting an installment of Mock Squid Soup: A Film Society.  Each month, on the second Friday, we shall host a bloghop devoted to a particular movie.  We invite others to watch the same film and post their own reviews.  This month's movie is... 

Currently #92 on my flickchart list
I hadn't seen this since it was in theaters in fall of 2000.  In my memory, it was one of the first superhero movies in the current wave of decent superhero movies but I hadn't viewed it since.

I was lucky enough to get to see this a few weekends back with The Squid and our mutual friend.  I enjoyed the twists and turns, as well as the final reveal.  If viewed separately from M. Night Shyamalan's other films, especially "The Sixth Sense", it is a decent thriller with some neat superhero under/over tones.

It was also the movie, with this viewing, where I realized I have now seen enough movies with The Squid that I can no longer keep track of what we've seen together easily.  I know I slept through our first ("The Pirates! Band of Misfits") and he dozed during our second ("The Avengers") but after that, I had to start writing them down!

I know that really isn't a discussion nor a review but it's been a rough week!

Head over to the Squid's site for November's sign-up list tomorrow.  

The next feature on Friday, November 14th will be... 

Space Battleship Yamato

Friday, September 26, 2014

The Cephalopod Coffeehouse: September 2014: Marvel Comics Collected Editions

I have been collecting comic books for a very long time.  When I first started, comics struggled for legitimacy in terms of mainstream acceptance.  They were still considered for children.

The term "graphic novel" was held for longer length, special format stories.  Collections of individual stories bound together were trade paperbacks.  It is still the term I use today.

I was alerted to the existence of these trades at WalMart via a story on the comic gossip site "Bleeding Cool".

WalMart is starting to stock a variety of Marvel trades at $5.00 each.  Each book also has a code for a free digital download (a realm I have yet to investigate.)

Here is a picture of the books at my WalMart that I posted on the Bleeding Cool site:

It is an impressive display.  I picked up the Spider-Man, Avengers and Guardians.  I had read the issues in the Cap collection and looking it over didn't think my son would enjoy it as much as the others.  Both my son and I devoured the other collections.

I give high marks to the Spider-Man and Avengers collections.  The Guardians was a bit more of a mish-mash, suffering from changing art styles, Brian Michael Bendis' habit of having each character sound exactly the same, and  having just seen the INCREDIBLE movie for a second time...
these stories were pale in comparison.

Our favorite was the Spider-Man collection.  He is a character I have never collected or read regularly.  The story line, regarding a new Hobgoblin, was intriguing enough that we are on the lookout for the next wave of these books.

The Avengers presented a nice time travel mystery that we want to see finished, too.

All in all, if you have a mild interest in comic books or these characters (who more and more read like their big screen counterparts), five bucks and a're in for a good time.

Friday, September 12, 2014

A Bloggers' Film Society: September 2014: Burn After Reading

Has a month come and gone already?  The start of the school year has meant a dearth of posts from yours truly.  Either way it is time for another installment of A Bloggers' Film Society hosted by The Armchair Squid and yours truly.

Our Society is just starting out.  Please consider checking out the other folks who have signed up to review this month's offering by clicking HERE!  And perhaps YOU will join us next month?

Currently #812 on my flickchart list

As you may or may not know, The Squid and I are friends in real life.  I love the man like a brother.  The Venn diagram of us has more in the middle than not.  That being said, our entertainment tastes do not always line up.  From the outside looking in, one might consider him a great many ways.  I like that we do line up enough so that when we are not in sync, we can have intelligent conversations none-the-less.

I really wanted to like this movie.  But I did not.

I am not a Focus Film fan.  For awhile, Nan and I used it as our buzzword to dismiss a movie out of hand.  And like most Focus Films, this one seemed to be trying too hard, Frances McDormand and George Clooney especially.  I kept expecting one of them to pull out the old Jon Lovitz as Master Thespian "ACTING!" line.  And like Clooney's overall performance, I felt the movie couldn't pick a style and stick with it.  Serious drama?  Wacky comedy?  Spy flick? Comedy of errors?  If it wanted any or all of them, I do not feel it succeeded.

Looking over the Coen brothers' body of work, I realize that I have seen many of their films but have liked few.

But there were parts I liked in here.  Some of the dialog and scenes really crackled, especially early on.  John Malkovich was a hoot.  JK Simmons' world-weary, semi-clueless CIA boss was a delight (though, to be honest, I don't think I've ever seen him in a role I didn't like).  And whereas some actors (like Clooney, Bruce Willis or Tom Cruise) often have a hard time convincing me they are playing a character that is NOT them, Brad Pitt usually surprises me.  This time was no different.  I think I just like the guy as an actor.

Overall, the movie started out intriguing.  I was hooked and interested,  but at some point it just sort of lost its way.  Perhaps it was intentional.  I do not know.  But at that point I no longer cared.


Please consider joining us next month.  Squid will reveal our next installment on his blog.  He and I are planning on watching the movie together with our Third Musketeer.  I am looking forward to the movie and the company!

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