Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Chris and Reggie's Cosmic Treadmill, Episode 51 - Crisis on Infinite Earths, Part Two

Chris and Reggie's Cosmic Treadmill, Episode #51

Crisis on Infinite Earths, Part Two (of Five)

  • Crisis on Infinite Earths #3 (June, 1985)
  • Crisis on Infinite Earths #4 (July, 1985)
  • Crisis on Infinite Earths #5 (August, 1985)
    • Marv Wolfman & George Perez
This is one of those episodes that we in the biz would call "a doozy"... technical term, of course.  We're covering three issues of Crisis on Infinite Earths, including... the fifth one.

What's so special about the fifth one?  That's not the "big issue", right?  Well... if you're following along, or know anything about Reggie and my process, you'll know that we're giving bios and histories for every single character to show up in CrisisThat fifth issue... features that scene (included below), where like skatey-eight hundred major and minor DC characters all show up and meet up.  We covered them all.  It's nearly a three-hour endeavor, I hope you packed a lunch... or have an especially long commute.


Also: I neglected to mention this yesterday, but we prefaced our Crisis coverage in Episode 50 with an overview on the JLA/JSA crossovers of the Silver and Bronze Ages.  This episode continues that tour, taking those crossovers right up to Crisis on Infinite Earths.  We were eventually going to do complete Cosmic Treadmill episodes for each of the JLA/JSA crossovers... however, we only ever got around to doing one... but that's a story for another day.

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Chris and Reggie's Cosmic Treadmill, Episode 50 - Crisis on Infinite Earths, Part One

Chris and Reggie's Cosmic Treadmill, Episode #50


Crisis on Infinite Earths, Part One (of Five)

  • Crisis on Infinite Earths #1 (April, 1985)
  • Crisis on Infinite Earths #2 (May, 1985)
    • Marv Wolfman & George Perez
As we were approaching our landmark fiftieth episode of the Cosmic Treadmill, we racked our brains trying to decide the perfect "milestone" comic book event to cover.  I mean, Crisis was probably the first thing that popped into both our minds... but, was that really "fiftieth episode" worthy?  Like, shouldn't Crisis be saved for like our hundredth episode?

Well, the fact that we were a tiny comic book podcast that actually managed to make it fifty episodes when so many other shows peter out long before... and even fewer make it into the triple-digits, we decided not to put off a day that might've never come.  It did, of course... but, that's a story for another day.

Monday, August 3, 2020

Morituri Mondays, Episode 24 - Strikeforce: Morituri #24 (12/88)


Morituri Mondays, Episode #24

Strikeforce: Morituri #24 (December, 1988)
“Goodbye, Blue Sky”
Written by James D. Hudnall
Pencils by John Calimee
Inks by Val Mayerik
Letters by Phil Felix
Colors by Max Scheele
Edits by Carl Potts
Chiefing by Tom DeFalco
Cover Price: $1.50 USD / $2 CAN / 50p UK
Release Date: August 2, 1988

The [controversial statement alert:] sorta-kinda underrated third-third of Strikeforce: Morituri rolls on... with another solid issue chock full of intrigue, aliens, and of course... death.

Sunday, August 2, 2020

Cosmic Treadmill Presents... Comix Tawk, Episode 12: "The Softening of Comic Book Villainry"


Cosmic Treadmill Presents... Comix Tawk, Episode #12
"The Softening of Comic Book Villainry"

Welcome, friends... to the penultimate episode of Comix Tawk, wherein Reggie and I discuss the phenomenon of "softening" comic book villains.  This can be due to a full-blown "face turn" for a bad guy... or, by a writer taking a particular interest in fleshing out a villain's backstory... to the point where readers might find it easier to relate to them... or at the very least, make the baddie harder to hate!

Saturday, August 1, 2020

Chris is on Infinite Earths, Episode 37: Big Daddy Danger #1 (2002)


Chris is on Infinite Earths, Episode #37

Big Daddy Danger #1 (October, 2002)
Creator, Writer & Artist - Adam Pollina
Inker - Tyson McAdoo
Colors & Separations - Thomas Chu
Associate Editor - Ivan Cohen
Editor - Mike Carlin
Cover Price: $2.95


Big Daddy Danger, what's that?  Well, it's a little discussed/little known DC Comic about a superhero professional wrestler.  Why are we talking about it?  Well, how else would I be able to shoe-horn a conversation about my own life and times as a professional wrestler... for about six months or so.

Friday, July 31, 2020

Weird Comics History, Episode 23: Twilight of the Superheroes

Weird Comics History, Episode #23

Twilight of the Superheroes
A Pitch by Alan Moore for DC Comics

Today we're going to revisit one of my favorite shows we ever made... the episode where we discussed Alan Moore's rejected pitch for a DC Comics event called Twilight of the Superheroes.

If you've never heard of Twilight... well, I think you're in for a treat.  If you've only heard bits and pieces... strap in, because we go through the entire thing here!

Thursday, July 30, 2020

Chris is on Infinite Earths, Episode 20: Justice League of America #224 (1984)


Chris is on Infinite Earths, Episode #20

Justice League of America #224 (March, 1984)
"The Supremacy Factor!"
Writer - Kurt Busiek
Penciller - Chuck Patton
Inker - Dick Giordano
Letterers - John Costanza & Todd Klein
Colorist - Gene D'Angelo
Editor - Len Wein
Cover Price: $0.75

Today I'm revisiting an episode wherein I discuss my last trip to a Comic Book Convention... along with my overall distaste for the "current year" Convention racket, and how I let me preciosity get in the way of a great friendship.  Oh, also heat-stroke... because I got it that weekend!

And heyyy, I just found out I can no longer drag inserted images where I'd like them to go!  Way to keep letting me down, Blogger!  Just when I think you're the worst thing ever, you make me pine for how lousy you were just yesterday!

And Ho-lee crap, now I can't toggle HTML without great swaths of my writing vanishing into the ether?  Are you kidding me?  This is a product from Google, right?  I can't be the only person having these problems, can I?

Welp, lemme jump through the hoops and try and revert back to "Legacy Blogger".

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Chris is on Infinite Earths, Episode 32: Superman and Me / Me and Superman



Chris is on Infinite Earths, Episode #32

"Superman & Me / Me & Superman"

Received an odd-ish message this past weekend from a long-time reader who expressed interest in getting into comics podcasting.  They asked if I had any advice on how to get started, and for lack of a better way of putting it, if I knew of any "best practices".

This isn't a question I get often, as I'm sure anyone who knows me well enough to ask... knows that once that box is opened, I'll probably talk your ear off about it for days.  If I were to guess, I probably only got the question this time because, on the most recent episode of Chris is on Infinite Earths, I suggested that the Chris and Reggie Channel may start "hosting" content from other creators sometime down the line.

So, let's talk about it!  Right below the fold...

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

ReMarvel, Episode 6: The X-Men and Me / Me and the X-Men


Remarvel, Episode 6

"The X-Men and Me / Me and the X-Men"

Well, it looks like "Legacy Blogger" is no longer an option (without jumping through some hoops)... and the new-look disaster has been foisted upon us.  When I tried accessing the dashboard and found the new bubbly, fake-ass-"app" looking interface, the eternal optimist in me hoped that maybe, just maybe... I'd now be able to go back to batch uploading images.  I hoped that today, in this very paragraph, I'd be able to report that the drought is over - that Blogger actually fixed what wasn't broken before they started effing with it.

Not so much.  Looks like it's the same ol' same ol'.  I can upload as many images as I want... but, if I dare to actually insert one into an article... all the rest of them vanish, and have to be uploaded again.  There really has to be an easier way.  Am I the only idiot still using Blogger?

Monday, July 27, 2020

Morituri Mondays, Episode 23 - Strikeforce: Morituri #23 (11/88)


Morituri Mondays, Episode #23

Strikeforce: Morituri #23 (November, 1988)
“Castles of Fire Rivers of Blood”
Writer - James D. Hudnall
Pencils - Mark Bagley
Inks - Val Mayerik
Letters - Phil Felix
Colors - Max Scheele
Edits - Carl Potts
Chief - Tom DeFalco
Cover Price: $1.25 USD / $1.75 CAN / 50p UK

Release Date: July 5, 1988

Welcome to Strikeforce: Morituri, Mark Bagley... we hope you survive the experience!

Sunday, July 26, 2020

Cosmic Treadmill Presents... Comix Tawk, Episode 11: "Teen Titans, the Early Years"


Cosmic Treadmill Presents... Comix Tawk, Episode #11
"Teen Titans, the Early Years"


Have a title-specific installment of Comix Tawk to share this week... which was meant to be the first episode of a multi-part series wherein we discussed the lives and times of the Teen Titans.
Rather than referring to this as a "Part One", we will just look at it as our look at "The Early Years" of that team we enjoy so much.

Saturday, July 25, 2020

Chris is on Infinite Earths, Episode 36: Batman #458 (1991)


Chris is on Infinite Earths, Episode #36

Batman #458 (January, 1991)
"Night Monsters"
Writer - Alan Grant
Pencils - Norm Breyfogle
Inks - Steve Mitchell
Colors - Adrienne Roy
Letters - Todd Klein
Assistant Editor - Kelley Puckett
Editor - Denny O'Neil
Cover Price: $1.00


After an extended absence, the Chris is on Infinite Earths Podcast returns with plenty of housekeeping, some answers to your questions regarding the future, a lot of guilty introspection... and, if you can believe it, a comic book

Friday, July 24, 2020

X-Force #3 (1991)


X-Force #3 (October, 1991)
"Battlecry"
Plot/Art - Rob Liefeld
Writer - Fabian Nicieza
Letters - Chris Eliopoulos
Colors - Joe Rosas
Editor - Bob Harras
Chief - Tom DeFalco
Cover Price: $1.00

Happy Friday, everybody... boy, has it been a week!

This week, the wife and I spent... what felt like many days worth of hours shopping for a new car.  Oof.  Not something I enjoy, nor am I very good at.  I'm quick to "fall in love" with a car... and, also... I have this odd sympathy for salespeople who work solely on commission... especially when they're nice.

A nice salesperson could quote me $1,200 a month for 72-months on a car worth 15k... and I'd think they were being honest with me.  On the other hand, a jerk salesperson can quote me something $5 more than what I'd told them was my best offer... and I'll tear their head off, and threaten to do worse.

That's why the wife handles all'a that.  I just get to sit there and look either peaceful or menacing... whichever the situation calls for, I guess... while she makes the deal.

The problem this week was... we only dealt with some very nice people.  I'm not good at "walking away" from a deal... where the wife has just amazing levels of restraint, and a calmness that would give an angel a bit of pause.

I dunno how she can do it, but the entire negotiation process is like a sport to her.  Me?  Every time the salesperson leaves us alone for 20-30 minutes to "talk with their manager", my blood begins to boil just a little bit.  The other day, we were left to sit in this dude's office no less than ten times, while he "worked hard for us", chipping away at his manager... and we still walked out without a car!  He got a bit snippy at the end, as though we were wasting his time... even though, we were the only customers in the joint for the entire five hours we were there.  Guess we kept him from some valuable Facebookin' or something.

Had to tell him I didn't appreciate his tone... and that I felt it best that I left the room so I wouldn't have to hear more of it... which kinda freaked him out.  I felt kinda bad... but, by this point I was exhausted.

Anyhoo, long story... well, still long... but not as long as it could be, we wound up buying a new ride... and, it's a beaut.  Looking forward to keeping it for ten years... just so I don't have to darken a dealership's door for a decade or more.

Wow, been awhile since I've written a pre-ramble!  Whoo... that felt good.  And now... X-Force!

--



It's now Day Three of the standoff at the World Trade Center, and we open with Siryn, in probably one of the more iconic Liefeldian poses we're going to see here.  Oh, who are we kidding... they all are.  Here, she's got a very wide gap betwixt her legs... and it looks like, rather than having a full head of hair, she instead has a mane.  And... maybe we spoke too soon, in just turning the page Siryn somehow looks even more Liefeldian.  Her hair... almost appears sentient... it's almost as though Rob messed up on her face a few times, and rather than erasing his mistake, he just drew hair over it.



Anyhoo, Siryn gets pummeled by Juggernaut... yet keeps coming back for more punishment.  Finally, she's shot in the gut by her Uncle, Black Tom Cassidy.  The sound effect here is, well... unique: SHEECHAKT.



Terry recovers, but has second thoughts about hopping back in the fray.  Lucky for her, the cavalry is just about to arrive!  An X-Force air-craft floats overhead... inside, we see Cable and Domino... the former is wearing some insanely strange armor.  Like, this armor looks like it's been equipped with insect-mandibles or something, it's very strange... and, thankfully, not something we see Cable wearing very often... if ever again!



Meanwhile, inside one of the Twin Towers, Sunspot and friggin' Gideon are looking on at everything that's going on... with Bobby getting a bit frustrated that they haven't been able to make their move just yet.  Black Tom and Juggernaut enter the scene looking... uh, quite a bit off-register.  Cain is at least two-times as wide as he is tall.  Worth noting, he refers to Gideon as "pansy-boy"!  I wanna say, Gideon might have some awful taste in hairstyles... but his fashion game ain't half bad!  I could see this untucked red vest over a button up shirt actually looking pretty good in the real world!



Back outside, Siryn enters the X-Force Scout Ship... and she is greeted by Cable and the Florets!  Cable suggests they work together if she's in the mood to "kick the crud" out of something.



They hover for a bit more to devise a gameplan... which amounts to sending their biggest guy hurtling toward the biggest other guy in the book.  And so, Warpath hops out the Scout... and plummets into Juggernaut.  It's awesome that they get the opportunity to exchange pleasantries amid the freefall!  James konks into Cain... sending them both tumbling off the top of the tower!



Then, X-Force leaps from the Scout Ship headed for Black Tom's guards!  This definitely feels like overkill... and we soon find out that it is.  The human guards are absolutely no match for the muties.



Back inside, Black Tom... uh, stretches?  It looks like he's really getting refreshed here, it's like he'd just gotten out of bed.  Actually, though, he's just flourishing amid some pontification.  Finally, Gideon's had enough of whatever Tom has to say... and he and Bobby rush 'im!



Gideon winds up getting blasted by Black Tom's boom-stick, and Bobby just winds up getting his butt handed to him!  Black Tom isn't the fella to mess with!  We almost wonder why he even bothers calling in the Juggernaut... ol' Cain is nothing more than a liability!



Anyhoo, Tom doesn't get long to celebrate his victory... as, Cable barges in and shoots Tom in the side!  Almost seems unsportsmanly, dunnit?  Should we mention again just how pants-on-head ridiculous Cable's armor looks?!



Back outside, Proudstar and Juggernaut continue punching one another.  We can see that Cain is holding a detonator... we might assume he's been holding it the entire time, which... if so, I gotta say, he's got some awesome muscle and impulse control.  He just took a header off the World Trade Center, and didn't crush the thing!


Look at that weird edit on the remote device... looks almost like someone just pasted a triangle over the art.
Wonder what they might've been trying to cover up here?
The big guys continue to beat one another about the head and shoulders, when who should appear but... the Amazing Spider-Man!  Yes, Spidey swings through the scene, and rather than get between a proverbial "rock and a hard place", decides to head topside in order to check in on the hostage situation.



But then... BOOM!  There's an explosion in the Twin Towers!  To be continued... in the pages of Spider-Man #16?!



--

Well, that's an oddly prescient final page... which might give ya a bit of pause.  It's, honestly, probably the only thing even worth discussing about this entire issue... as it's more or less just a twenty-some page fight scene.  I mean, that's exactly what it is.  Flip through this sucker and count how many pages are occupied by great big panels of heroes and villains lunging toward one another (or the reader).  There are quite a few of 'em!

I think, if this issue had a legacy (which, I mean... it's X-Force #3, ain't nobody reflecting fondly on this stuff)... it would have to be that explosion in the last page.  Two years after this issue came out, there would be a bombing at the World Trade Center... and a decade later, the buildings wouldn't even be standing anymore.  This is the sort of thing that I feel like Marvel might want to edit out of "current year" reprints of this story... though, I cannot say with any confidence or certainty that they have.  I suppose I wouldn't be surprised either way.

Other than that... sadly there just isn't all that much to say about this issue.  Sure, I could spend the next six paragraphs talking about low-hanging fruit like pouches, feet, and teeth... but, I'll leave that for the true comics scholars of the internet.  This was an ehh issue, nothing to fall in love with... though, not a whole lot to get mad at either... unless you're the sort of person who might get mad that Marvel published a story where the World Trade Center gets attacked ten-years before 9/11... and, trust me... there are people like that.

Overall, a skippable story in a vacuum... but, if you're reading the first handful of issues of X-Force, you probably won't regret the four-and-a-half minutes you devote to issue #3.

--

Letters Page:



--

Coolometer!


Thursday, July 23, 2020

ReMarvel, Episode 1: Omega the Unknown #1 (1975)


ReMarvel, Episode One

Omega the Unknown #1 (March, 1975)
"Omega the Unknown!"
Writers/Creators - Steve Gerber & Mary Skrenes
Art - Jim Mooney
Letters - John Costanza
Colors - Petra Goldberg
Edits - Marv Wolfman
Cover Price: $0.25


I know I've discussed a couple of episodes of ReMarvel here on the site... but, never the first one!  This was actually an attempt at "podcasting with a purpose", so to speak.  An attempt to rediscover everything I loved about Marvel Comics, and how I might break some of my own twisted "fandom rules".

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Chris and Reggie's Cosmic Treadmill, Episode 121: Limited Collectors' Edition C-24 (1973)

Chris and Reggie's Cosmic Treadmill, Episode #121

Limited Collectors' Edition C-24 (December, 1973)
"New Giant Adventures of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer"
By Sy Reit & Rube Grossman
Edits - Larry Nadle & Whitney Ellsworth
Cover Price: $1.00

If my memory is right, today will be the last day of Christmas on Infinite Earths... in July.  I hope it's been moderately enjoyable... I know it's helped me come up with interesting (to me) ways to continue sharing content without the constant urge to punch my laptop screen in every time I try and upload images to Blogger!

Really, Google... ya gonna fix this crap?  Or just keep blaming the phenomenon on your userbase?  It ain't like you need us.  What's really troubling to me right now is that Podbean is currently undergoing a very similar dashboard "facelift".  Let's just hope it ends up being a little bit more friendly than this one.

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Chris and Reggie's Cosmic Treadmill, Episode 81: Ambush Bug Stocking Stuffer

Chris and Reggie's Cosmic Treadmill, Episode #81

Ambush Bug Stocking Stuffer #1 (1986)
"I Knew I Shoulda Taken That Left Toyn Back in Albakoyky"
"Night of the Living Doll"
Plot & Pencils - Keith Giffen
Script - Robert Loren Fleming
Inks - Bob Oksner
Colors - Anthony Tollin
Letters - John Costanza
Editor - Julius Schwartz
Cover Price: $1.25


Keeping it Christmassy for a couple more days during this muggy and miserable month.  Boy is it hot outside!

Monday, July 20, 2020

Morituri Mondays, Episode 22 - Strikeforce: Morituri #22 (1988)

Morituri Mondays, Episode 22

Strikeforce: Morituri #22 (October, 1988)
"The Long Suicide"
Writer - James D. Hudnall
Pencils - John Calimee
Inks - Tony DeZuniga
Letters - Phil Felix
Colors - Max Scheele
Edits - Carl Potts
Chief - Tom DeFalco
Cover Price: $1.25 USD
Release Date: June 7, 1988
Marvel Comics

Welcome back, Recruits!

Morituri Mondays returns for our third (and likely final) season of episodes as we take this baby home!

Sunday, July 19, 2020

Cosmic Treadmill Presents... Comix Tawk, Episode 10: "Comic Scenes We Love!"


Cosmic Treadmill Presents... Comix Tawk, Episode #10
"Comic Scenes We Love!"

Flipping the script on our usual "Negative Nellie" Comix Tawk outings, this time out Reggie and I decided to focus on the positive... and discuss some of our very favorite scenes in all of comics.

It's nice to sometimes remember why we still buy these things, right?

Saturday, July 18, 2020

Chris and Reggie's Cosmic Treadmill, Episode 70: Christmas With the Superheroes #1 (1988)

Chris and Reggie's Cosmic Treadmill, Episode #70

Christmas With the Superheroes #1 (1988)
"Wanted: Santa Claus - Dead or Alive!"
"The Man Who Murdered Santa Claus!"
"The TT's Swingin' Christmas Carol!"
"Star Light, Star Bright... Farthest Star I See Tonight!"
"Twas the Fright Before Christmas!"
"The Silent Night of the Batman"
Writers - Denny O'Neil, Len Wein, Bob Haney, Paul Levitz, E. Nelson Bridwell & Mike Friedrich
Pencillers - Frank Miller, Dick Dillon, Nick Cardy, Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez, Curt Swan & Neal Adams
Inkers - Steve Mitchell, Dick Giordano & Murphy Anderson
Letterers - Ben Oda
Colorists - Glenn Whitmore, Helen Vesik & Jerry Serpe
Editors - Len Wein, Julius Schwartz
Cover Price: $2.95


Keeping our Christmas on Infinite Earths... in July festivities rolling along, today I'm sharing Reggie and my first Holiday special... DC Comics' Christmas With the Superheroes #1 from 1988.


Download

This was one of our longer episodes... as we were looking at like skatey-eight hundred creators and a half-dozen stories.  This was also my longest ever blog post to that point... and, actually, it very well still might be!  I still haven't published that "full-length" Bizarro World piece yet, so I think this one still might take the length-crown!

With that said... Just as with yesterday, if podcasts ain't your thing, there is a text-n-pics variation on this discussion that you can check out if you decide to click the cover below!  While you're at it, you might wanna check out my discussion of Christmas With the Superheroes #2 (1989)!

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