post-Con rundown

by John Cook IV

While Marvel was definitely a force at the con, with its model of Odin’s throne from the upcoming Thor movie, DC was celebrating its 76th anniversary in a big way. There was a discussion of the Blackest Night storyline and the follow-up, Brightest Day, involving the White Lanterns. A picture was displayed as a teaser, with many plot elements shown graphically as to the upcoming events for the story. Some of these elements included Aqualad posing near a cave with Black Manta’s red eyes glowing within, Deadman carving into a stone tablet, the White Lantern symbol on a tree (possibly the Tree of Life perhaps?) and Aquaman in a state of repose near the White Lantern as Queen Mara rushes to him. Also mentioned was Flashpoint, a storyline featuring Flash and just about every speedster/Speed Forse user in DC history. Details weren’t laid out, but expect to hear more from DC in the near future on this one. The major event for Superman is the upcoming Superman:Grounded story, where he walks across the country, trying to reconnect with the people. Of course, Batman was a big topic, with his upcoming return to Gotham from the dead and his travails through history. Grant Morrison will be writing a new series, called Batman Inc., where he coordinates the activities of the various Gotham heroes. Also of interest is House of Hush, where an inmate is released from prison and has a score to settle with Thomas Wayne and who is seeking out Hush for assistance in his search for vengeance against Bruce Wayne. On the Vertigo imprint side of things, there is a sequel to Road to Perdition being written by Max Allen Collins called Return to Perdition in the works. Also mentioned was Revolver, where a man who lives a pretty ordinary life suddenly wakes up in a post apocalyptic nightmare, and switches back and forth between these two worlds when he sleeps. He must then investigate why this is happening, and also, why to him specifically. Daytripper will continue as we learn more about the main character’s plane crash, rise to stardom as an author and the odd events in his life that sometimes lead to bizzare conclusions. In Hellblazer, John Constantine is getting married, and certain entities don’t want this to happen. Look for the arc “Bloody Carnations” for the answers. Finally, a new Li’l Endless title is coming out called Delirium’s Party, which showcases the Endless as cute superdeformed children.

Smaller press was also out in force this year, and Oni Press has some good titles to entertain the masses with. SuperPro KO is about professional wrestling, and the comic is cartoony, over the top and looks wonderful so far. A new title called 6th Gun, set in post Civil War America, is about 6 weapons of power and what happens when the last one is in the hands of a pacifist named Emily. Does she trust shifty men to protect her, or give up the gun to even shiftier men and be done with it all? Finally Resurrection is ending up its first year. This is a series that asks the reader what would happen after an alien invasion we won, and the aliens leave? The planet is in disarray and humanity must now start anew.

Dark Horse was also showcasing a lot in this year’s panel. Gerard Way’s Umbrella Academy will continue, The Goon’s backup character the Buzzard has a miniseries that will continue and their licensed titles will continue to go strong. Star Wars will have a ‘series of series’ called Blood Ties, where 2 characters with a blood tie of a sort will be showcased in a miniseries. The first one will be about Jango and Boba Fett working together. The upcoming vampire movie Let Me In will be made into a comic adaptation, about a female vampire who is physically only 12 years old. The Gold key heroes Dr. Solar, Magnus Robot Fighter and Turok Son of Stone will be brought into the fold, with Jim Shooter as writer, who edited their adventures when he was at Valiant.

While there is a lot more to discuss, I did detect a note of secrecy at many of the panels, and there was of course a push towards digital comics as well as TV shows and movies. With all of the new material coming out, now is a wonderful time to be involved in pop culture and comics in general.

The main idea of this blog is to review books that have recently come out or to give you an idea of books in advance by obtaining advanced copies. My next blog will run down the rating system and include a review of 3 books, and look for a top 10 list of my personal favorite of the new crop of books. Until next time, boys and girls, I’ll see you in the funny papers!


Comic-Con 2010 Shwag, Part Three!

That grinning guy in the corner is a mask from the new studio of Brian Pulido, of Lady Death fame!

A huge fake tattoo from The Expendables.

AGENT and Animation magazines!

A Spirit of Halloween shwag bag, I think it’s from a costume shop here in San Diego.

A Balrog hologram card!

A TV Guide Superfan Fan – get it? And a TV Guide lightup pendant that flashes!

Yes, those are light-up Bam Bams still in the package, those things drive me nuts!

A palette of pins from the SyFy Channel!

Piranha beach ball? Oh, the irony!

Red Suckerpunch wristband.

A book of LOST artifacts. Does that make them found?

FX Channel sample DVD!

A fake tat from Fringe!

Gears of War 3 ad sticker.

Darth Vader keychain, and a Drive Angry keychain, from the upcoming Nicholas Cage movie!

Hunted by Alicia Glass

The Do’s and Don’ts of Cosplay!

How to Survive and Co-Exist In Cosplay

By Connie Canseco

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.  Cosplay is a form of that.  Fans of any genre, be it animation, cinema or a period of time, tend to show their appreciation by dressing up in their favorite hero or heroine.  It is a sincere appreciation of the art.  Cosplay takes a lot of time and effort on the player and of course, if you are going to put that much time an effort into a costume or prop, you are going to want to show it off.  Conventions, gatherings and even just everyday events can bring cosplayers out in droves.  They are just having some harmless fun with other fans and should be appreciated.   That being said, remember some guidelines when approaching these “people”.

Guidelines for mere mortals (non-cosplayers) 

Acknowledge them if you can.  Don’t be rude and scream out to them, but if you can, recognize the character or the story and let them know you know who they are.   

DON’T NITPICK!!!!!  So the blaster on the storm trooper looks too much like the Nerf gun you just picked up for your little sister or the lines on the Alchemist’s jackets are ¾” off from center.   IT IS A COSTUME!!!!!!  Unless you are one of the prop masters from Warner Brothers or the actual artist of Deathnote (even that is pushing it) it is a REPLICA!!!!!!  No one really has the exact specs on all the costumes.  Enjoy for the hard work they put into the costume and their creativity to create the illusion they are presenting.

 Take pictures.  “Take a picture, it’ll last longer.”  Yes, yes it will.  Cosplayers are out and about to be seen, whether it be at a convention or at a showing of whatever it is they are cosplaying, they want to be seen.  If their picture turns up on someone’s Facebook or someone’s site, they accomplished what they set out to do…be seen.

  Be polite.  If you do want a picture, ask.  As said before, they want to be seen.  They want to be acknowledged.  Just be mindful of what you are taking pictures of and where.  If you know that it will be a quick click just grab the opportunity and take the picture.  If you are on a busy show floor or a crowded street, try to step aside so that you are not blocking the flow of ‘traffic’ and you can avoid being bumped and banged with bags, strollers or such and your subject is getting glared at because they are the cause of the blockage.

 Be compassionate.  Even though everyone can wear spandex, doesn’t mean that they should.  You will get those players who you will just look at as say “NO”.   Keep it to yourself.  These players put in a lot of time and effort to make these illusions come to life.  They are very proud of their work.  Don’t be a hater and bag on them if they don’t meet your specification for the perfect Wonder Woman or Spartan.  Do you have the confidence to pull off that look?

Guidelines for Players (you costume folk)

 Play the part.  You are here in full costume you are here to make an entrance.  Like RuPaul says, “Work it honey”.  You put in a lot of hard work for that costume.  You should show it off. 

 Be tolerant. Remember that not everyone is into the same things as you are.  People may have questions about your character.    People may have questioned how you made things.  Be prepared to answer them.  Don’t be frustrated if you constantly get stopped to take pictures.  These are fans just like you.  Remember, you put yourself out there to be seen. 

 Accept the compliment graciously.  That may be the 50th time you have heard, “I love how you made the belt holster” but in the mean time, no one has even taken the time to notice that wrist armor is actually embroidered and stamped with that crystal.  True fans will notice.  Just accept the fact that some of your hard work will be missed.  In the same light, you never know when someone really appreciates the work (PIXAR).

 Have a bit of a thicker skin.  Just like I mentioned in rule 5 for the mortals, some people who, more power to them, are confident to wear the micro shorts and the 6” platforms may want to take that second look in the mirror before stepping out.  There will always be those critics out there that will just not get the look you are going for and although you may think that the bodysuit that Ivy is wearing in Soul Caliber is the sickest look, you may want to rethink the pirate instead.  We tend to have a different vision of ourselves if we really want something.  Like I said, take a second look.

 Remember your audience.  This goes with the thick skin.  That Dawn costume is great at Comic-con but do you really want to have your co-workers remembering you at the water cooler the day after Halloween like that.  Be aware of who is around you and what can be said.  Also, not that I am trying to censor anyone’s creative liberties but, age appropriate.  I don’t really think anyone really wants to see a 12 year old Leeluu from ‘The Fifth Element” without feeling like a pedophile.

  Are these the official guidelines, heck no. These are just things that I keep in mind when I go out in costume.  Remember, this is all fun.  Mortals, remember, if you see something you like, let the players know.  If you see something you don’t keep it to yourself unless you can do better.  Players, you are awesome for getting out there and living your fantasy. Just remember everyone is entitled to an opinion.

CCI 2010 Friday — Falling Skies

Check the lack of website

Written by Alicia Glass

Falling Skies is the latest opus from executive producer Stephen Spielburg, that’s right the man himself, to be drooled over on tv in Summer 2011. Brought to you by the TNT Channel, only the two main stars of the show, Noah Wyle and Moon Bloodgood managed to make it to the panel. I’m a big fan of the Librarian movies with Wyle, and Bloodgood’s actually rather reserved in person, so it was an interesting panel. A trailer was shown, and they had a movie poster on a tripod, but I’m sorry to say aside from Spielburg’s name there was little to make me remember the show amidst the rest of Comic-Con insanity.

The actual show Falling Skies is slated to be a dramatic telling of human survivors who begin a rebellion six months after the aliens have invaded and taken over. Wyle’s character is a former American History teacher who uses his historic skills in real life now, and Bloodgood stars as Anne Glass, therapist to survivor children. It seems very different roles for the both of them, so I’m anxious to see how they do, and how Spielburg pulls a rabbit from wherever to make this show stand out amongst the rest.

See Noah Wyle talk about his character!

Congratulations to TME’s Masquerade Winners

By Angie Quidim

In case you missed this year’s Masquerade, TME awarded prizes for the best videogame/anime costume and the most entertaining skit this year. 

For Best Videogame/Anime, we picked

Mass Effect

For Most Entertaining Skit we picked

Murimasa: Smells Like Demon Spirit

CCI 2010 Thursday — Dexter

Check out all things Dexter

Written by Alicia Glass

The panel for what is probably the most anticipated next season of a show out there, Dexter Season Five, was packed beyond capacity. Some genius of scheduling decided to do The Expendables panel in Hall H right before Dexter in Ballroom 20, so basically you really have to choose between the two. I went with everyone’s favorite serial killer.

Michael C. Hall is a veteran of the Comic-Con scene at this point, having done a panel for Dexter since the start of the show, but man did he look tired. He certainly seems willing to answer every fan question posed to him at the panel, but really, the variations on ways to ask something to the affect of, “What do you think of all the bad stuff your character does?” get tiresome. See Hall talking about the fun he has on the set from Season Four with John Lithgow here.

Sadly none of the newcomers for Season Five – Julia Stiles, Peter Weller, Maria Kennedy, Johnny Lee Miller, and Shawn Hatosy – made it to the panel. It would have been good to include them in the Dexter phenomenon, perhaps next year then.

Gaming at Comic Con 2010: Take 2

By Lawrence Cicchetti 

Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood 

 Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood (AC:B) Continues where the last Assassin’s Creed left off and brings back the familiar protagonist, Ezio Auditore, as he assembles his own Brotherhood of Assassins to defeat the Templars.  Ubisoft promises over 15 hours of gameplay for the single-player version as well as bringing multiplayer for the first time in the franchise. 

 At the Ubisoft booth you could play a demo of the multiplayer wanted mode of AC:B where up to 8 players compete against each other for the highest amount of points based on quality and quantity of kills.  Each player is given a target and 

must eliminate the target as silently and swiftly as they can.  Every player chooses a character and a set of 2 abilities like a hidden gun or smoke bombs.  The game plays just like Assassin’s Creed with multiple players but still feels new and amazing.  Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood comes out November 16. 

Dragon Age 2 

            Ah yes the biggest game presented at Comic-Con.  EA had a room setup at the Gaslamp Hilton for Deadspace 2 and Dragon Age 2 for anyone to come and enjoy.  DA 2 premiered for the first time with actual gameplay just for the fans before they even talked to the press.  The spokesman gave a presentation on what people didn’t like about the first game and how they are working on improving it, than he gave a demonstration of the game showing us the new mechanics.  Afterwards we could actually play the demo shown to us.  The system itself is the same only without nearly as many bugs and much more impressive animation and action.  The demo included a battle using a warrior and a mage against a  

Dragon Age 2 

 Ah yes! The biggest game presented at Comic-Con.  EA had a room setup at the Gaslamp Hilton for Deadspace 2 and Dragon Age 2 for anyone to come and enjoy.  DA 2 premiered for the first time with actual gameplay just for the fans before they even talked to the press.  The spokesman gave a presentation on what people didn’t like about the first game and how they are working on improving it, than he gave a demonstration of the game showing us the new mechanics.  Afterwards we could actually play the demo shown to us.  The system itself is the same only without nearly as many bugs and much more impressive animation and action.  The demo included a battle using a warrior and a mage against a a slice of the framed narrative that is new in this game.  Dragon Age 2 comes out in 2011collection of dark spawn then followed