Archive for April, 2010

Red Dead Redemption

Posted in Video Games on April 21, 2010 by thebigsmoke

I’ve been watching a lot of westerns lately after finishing all three seasons of Deadwood. Now I’m getting pretty excited about this upcoming game from Rockstar.


Mark Millar’s Ultimate Avengers freak out

Posted in Comics on April 16, 2010 by thebigsmoke

By now it’s established comic book writer Mark Millar can do no wrong in my eyes and I’ll happily follow him from title to title like an eager puppy. However, his recent comments about upcoming shit pile We Are The X-Men is pretty funny. He posted the following rant on his messageboard:

I’m just starting Ultimate Avengers 3, issue 5, and it’s the arc I’m maybe most proud of. As trailered forever, this is vampires in the Ultimate Universe attacking mutants and Blade brought in to help the Avengers as heroes go down one by one.

Now someone’s sent me a link to an X-Men event out two months previous that’s exactly the same idea.


What do I do? This is what JRJR and I were going to do 5 years ago before Enemy of the State and I’ve been talking about it in interviews (and on here) since Ultimate Avengers launched. Blade’s even on the cover to issue 1 as I’ve been excited about this since I had Blade painted on an ice cream truck in 1978.

I don’t want to pull the issues as they’re part of a complex plot that runs through my entire four arc run, but I’m almost finished now. I’m writing issue five of six and they’re really, really good.

How the Hell did this happen? It wouldn’t have been as big a deal if I hadn’t started the series yet, but it’s almost done and just going to look foolish following an X-Men event. Am honestly just so disgusted with this as I’ve talked about it many times.

In fact, that’s just a part of it. You can read the whole thing over at Robot 6.

Since he made his posts he’s spoken to senior staff at Marvel and has concluded it’s not as bad as he initially feared. His posts about We Are The X-Men have been taken down and Millar has returned to coming up with new ways to reinvent superheroes, which is what he does best.

What’s funny is he made his posts before the storyline had actually been announced and based purely on the promo artwork. Did Marvel really decide to run two major events revolving around the same premise? I don’t know and I don’t particularly care; I personally haven’t had any interest in the X-Men for quite some time, so I don’t think I would have been affected.

I do wonder what people at Marvel thought when they got that frantic call from Millar. I can’t imagine they were pleased he decided to throw a public and panicky hissyfit based on no evidence, or that he denounced the publisher he works for without bothering to check any of the facts.

Hurt Locker

Posted in Film on April 9, 2010 by thebigsmoke

I posted up a review of Avatar a little while back, so now here are my thoughts on Oscar rival Hurt Locker. No witty title for this entry, I’m going to get straight to the point and give you a no nonsense critique. Basically because that requires the least amount of effort on my part.

I have to admit I was ever so slightly disappointed Hurt Locker wasn’t Point Break in Iraq. They don’t make action movies like Point Break anymore, so I guess some part of me sort of thought maybe another movie like that would be cool. It’s just a personal thing, because I really liked Point Break a lot.

However, I think it is fair to say Hurt Locker is a more accomplished piece of film-making; in fact it’s arguably Kathryn Bigelow’s best film to date. It is a fast-paced, adrenaline-fuelled story about bomb disposal experts working in Iraq. Don’t expect a clever plot, because the film is more a series of events which help to illustrate the trials of the job being done. The lack of direction in the plot seems to have divided opinion a bit, because I know some viewers have found the film pointless and frustrating.

I personally found Hurt Locker insightful and thought-provoking. The only other film about Iraq which bears comparison is Jarhead and I think Hurt Locker is a superior, more likeable film. I also think it is a better film than Avatar, for what it’s worth.

The Dark Knight: The Boy Wonder

Posted in Comics on April 6, 2010 by thebigsmoke

I’ve mentioned Frank Miller’s completely insane All-Star Batman before in passing, but DC recently announced at Wondercon they’re going to retitle the series. That’s right, the heading of this post was a clue because they’re going to call it The Dark Knight: Boy Wonder.

I guess somebody at DC feels it should be included in the Dark Knight universe, which is essentially a universe of shattered dreams since Frank Miller’s horrible The Dark Knight Strikes Back saw print. I completely understand DC’s desire to distance it from Grant Morrison’s All-Star Superman, which was an altogether successful attempt to produce an iconic Superman story. What I don’t understand is why they would seek to further screw up the Dark Knight universe in the process; or why they would choose a title which suggests that the Dark Knight and the Boy Wonder are one and the same.

Kick-Ass was kick ass!

Posted in Comics, Film on April 6, 2010 by thebigsmoke

Hey guys, remember when I reviewed Kick-Ass the comic back in 2008 and said I was looking forward to the Matthew Vaughn-directed movie? No, of course you don’t.

There are so many things I have been meaning to write about in my awesome blog and it’s so hard to find the time to crop pictures and think up pithy things to write underneath them. In a typical evening, once I’ve finished adding useless junk to my Amazon wish list, I don’t have a lot of time left over. Couple the time restrictions with the trauma of losing Corey for good and it’s fair to say my chronicle of awesomeness has been just a little less awesome than it could be.

I confess, in my darkest moments I have considered writing down my thoughts using lazy, broken sentences the way people do on Twitter. However, I had a dream last night in which God told me to bring peace to all mankind using the medium of my blog; now the moment of weakness has passed, so prepare to be amazed by what I write. I seriously recommend you do not read too much in one sitting as your head will probably explode.

Kick-Ass the movie was almost exactly like the comic, which nobody I know in real life but me has actually read. According to some websites other people who have read it do exist, but I have never met any of them. It’s weird when you read something and you think it’s cool and you tell people about it and they ignore you, then two years later it gets made into a movie and suddenly everybody is talking about it and it’s really popular. I wish I could say it means I’m super cool and ahead of the pack, but it’s probably more likely I’m a huge nerd and completely out of synch with everybody else.

So yes, Kick-Ass the movie. It was more crowd-pleasing than the comic, less visceral, but basically faithful in spirit. It is completely entertaining and I can recommend it without any reservation.

Kick-Ass was created by Mark Millar, an impressive, Hollywood-friendly talent, who has just launched a new title called Nemesis. I wouldn’t be surprised if you see a Nemesis adaptation in a few years. There, I called it first, motherfucker.

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