Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Dark Lich's Linkblog: Money Sink Edition!

It sucks to be a geek's wallet right now.

The last week alone was bursting with news about fun and exciting stuff to spend your money on. From toys to full-scale replicas, the world is giving us great reasons to subsist on cup noodles and water for the next few months!

For starters, Magic: The Gathering's latest expansion, Dark Ascension, is coming out this February 3. I'm so easy I put down wads of dough for a booster box, but if you're not as easy as me, you can check out the full list of cards at Wizards' Dark Ascension Card Image Gallery before taking the plunge.

Oh hey, Good Smile Company is putting out a sweet-ass Figma of Samus Aran from Metroid: Other M! And it comes with her Morph Ball form! Oh hey, my wallet's crying! Unfortunately for it, my love for shiny things compels me to buy this figure, which you can also do with this preorder link from AmiAmi.

Finally, CBR reports that eFX Inc. will be making collectible prop replicas based on the upcoming The Avengers movie! Get to wield Cap's shield, and even wear Thor's helmet that he wore for all 20 seconds that it was onscreen! Are you ready to plunk down more than a thousand dollars for these babies? With that sweet, sweet shield, it's mighty tempting to do so!

Enjoy the links! As for me, I'm off to find other means of monetary compensation...

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Underworld: Awakening Movie Review

If there's one thing the Underworld series of films had going for it, it was their interesting take on vampires and werewolves. It resulted in movies that were silly but rich in history and flavor. So what does Underworld: Awakening, the latest movie in the series, do to enrich its mythos?

Friday, January 20, 2012

My Week in Comics: January 20, 2012

Girl troubles? In my comics? You don't even know the half of it! But I's time for the most verbose comic book reviews around! What did I get myself into this week? Read on to find out!

I love me some fist-to-face action in my comics, and Supergirl #5 has it in spades. Mike Johnson and Michael Green takes Kara out for a sightseeing tour of *gasp* Krypton! Or what's left of it. But what she finds here might just be the end of her!

Color me weird, but I like how. This isn't slow-for-slow's sake...Michael Green and Mike Johnson are growing Supergirl's character in the pace they think is best, and it's a pace I'm comfortable with. We get some meaty (read: wordy) revelations on the origins of the dreaded Worldkillers (the mysterious murderous beings Superman mentioned in issue 2), and the obligatory 'misunderstanding throwdown' between Kara and this new character called Reign, drawn superbly of course by Mahmud Asrar. It results in pretty slim content, but it makes up for being just so darn fun to look at.

I've been keeping the faith these past few issues, and the creative team hasn't steered me wrong yet. Supergirl #5 may be a pretty wordy little side excursion, but what we do have is nice. This gets a 3.5 out of 5.

Gosh, it's been ages since I last saw an honest-to-goodness comic book team-up issue that wasn't hyped to hell and back. By virtue of that fact alone, Daredevil #8 rises above everything else this week!

I'm a sucker for heroes teaming up in comics, and if you've only been reading comics these past few years or so, you'd know that it's a rare occurrence outside of overhyped events. So color me awesome'd by this wonder of a comic book. It's got everything I want: Mark Waid's tightly-woven story about Daredevil and Spider-Man teaming up to go get the bad guys, with the minx-y Black Cat making it hard (hee!) for both our heroes, who leap and bound through every page courtesy of Kano's amazing and dynamic art, coupled with some smart and funny banter and sexual tension you can cut with a chainsaw!

Trust me, my pithy words can't do justice to this book, and the entire two-part story (starting with Amazing Spider-Man #677) itself. Daredevil #8 is good comics, filled with stuff we haven't seen or felt in comic books in a long time. This gets a 5 out of 5. Pick this up on sight (pun definitely intended!)

Can't get enough of The Geek's reviews? Then head on over to The Outhouse, where I reviewed Danger Girl: Revolver #1, the start of Abbey Chase and co.'s new adventure! Girls Protocol, I call it!

Good comics week is good! What did you pick up this week? What did you think of the comics reviewed this week? Why aren't you picking up Daredevil yet? Leave me a comment below and let's talk about it! Thanks for reading!

Friday, January 06, 2012

My Week in Comics: Fatale #1

The legendary team of Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips returns to the seedy underworld of noir in Fatale #1, a new mini-series from Image Comics. When Nicolas Lash meets the mysterious Jo, he gets more than he bargained for, as he gets entwined in a decades-old mystery full of corrupt cops, dark rituals, and a secret worth killing for!

Brubaker is right at home writing crime noir, with all its depressing tropes and trappings, and that often makes his work an acquired taste. I didn't feel his previous work like Incognito: Bad Influences, but with Fatale the added hint of the paranormal makes it interesting for me. It's certainly a challenge reading through this, as Brubaker hits you with a lot of characters at once, only relying on snippets of their conversations for hints on who's who and what's what. But it's that feeling of confusion and helplessness that adds flavor to the story, and as the mystery opens up to the characters, you're right there with them. With the mystery involving cults and ritual sacrifices and the paranormal...I'm guessing the next issue is gonna keep me up at night.

The art of Fatale is delightfully dark, with whatever light there is illuminating only something even darker and bloodier. Sean Phillips has mastered noir atmosphere, from the dingy bars to the beautiful dames to the smoke-filled air, complimenting Brubaker's story like nothing else. What can you expect from such a storied collaboration?

Fatale #1 is not your usual first issue, but it's not your usual book. With the promise of a Lovecraftian mystery brewing for our poor characters, Brubaker and Phillips managed to grab me hook, line and sinker. If noir might not be your thing, this might just be the book to convince you other wise. This gets a 4 out of 5.

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Top 5 Dragons in Comics

2012 is awesome by virtue of one simple, Chinese Zodiac-based fact: 2012 is the Year of the Dragon! 

But dragons aren't just for zodiacs...comic books have their fair share of big, scaly firebreathers. From the tiny to the titanic, the cool to the sizzling hot, we're counting down the top five dragons in comics in today's Top 5 Thursday! Get ready...I've counted them down so you won't have to!

5. The Great Red Dragon

When you're a dragon this ancient and powerful, you get to relax a little. The Great Red Dragon is the chillax'd guardian of The Valley in Jeff Smith's Bone, who often comes to the aid of Fone Bone during his misadventures there. He may look carefree and laid-back, but our top five dragon would fry you where you stand just as much as he'll defend you from stupid rat creatures. And that's, like, a fact, dude.

4. Dragon Man

It takes a special kind of crazy to decide to invent an android that looks like a cross between a caveman and a dragon just for an experiment. What kind of experiment do you need a man-dragon for?  Regardless, our fourth best dragon in comics has evolved into a badass dude who can take on the Fantastic Four and Hulk by himself, and even got smart enough to join Reed Richards' Future Foundation!

3. Shenlong

Shenlong isn't just any dragon...he's a wish-granting dragon! Debuting in Akira Toriyama's Dragonball manga, our top 3 dragon will grant the wish of anyone who can summon him by collecting all seven Dragon Balls. A task easier said than done, but the awesome image of a dragon the size of a mountain granting your every whim is worth the dead friends and landscapes destroyed you had to go through to do it!

2. Lockheed

A list of top dragons in comics wouldn't be complete without the alien-slash-dragon-slash-superhero-slash-secret agent that is Lockheed! Pet Avenger, agent of SWORD and sometime pet of Kitty Pride, this little dragon's got big heart, going on all sorts of adventures you wouldn't imagine a dragon the size of a house cat would survive in. Which he does. But even guys like Lockheed have to bow down to the biggest dragon of them all...

1. Fin Fang Foom

Everything about our top dragon in comics screams awesome. His name, when translated, means "He whose limbs shatter mountains and whose back scrapes the sun." He's as big as a skyscraper. He's an alien conqueror. His archenemy is Iron Man. He used to be a chef at the Baxter Building. And he's badass enough to wear gigantic purple underpants. How do you beat someone like that? You don't, and that's why Foom is irrevocably number 1!

And there you have it, the big lizards of comicdom as counted down by yours truly. What did you think of the list? Know of any other comic book dragons worthy of being on the Top 5? Leave me a comment below and let's talk about it. Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

7 Things to Look Forward to in 2012

Happy New Year, fellow geeks! Whatever you may think about the year 2012, there's no denying that it's the most exciting year yet for us geeks, with the most anticipated movies, the coolest new toys, and the hottest new comics all coming out this year! Join me as I list down seven of the most noteworthy things I'm looking forward to this 2012!


It's been a while since I picked up a Heroclix figure, and 2012 might just be the year I get back to clixing! The collectible superhero miniatures game has had a good 2011 with great expansion sets like Giant Size X-Men and Superman, but the upcoming 2012 sets will blow those out of the water! It's not enough that Wizkids/NECA are making an Avengers movie set (teased with a figure of movie Captain America!), but my man Galactus is set to make his debut inside a freaking booster pack (!) with the upcoming Galactic Guardians set! My wish for a Nova Prime Heroclix just came true this 2012!

Comic Book TV shows!

If 2011 was the year of the comic book movie, 2012 could be the year of comic book TV. A lot of comic book-based TV shows are being developed that we might see happen this year, from a Punisher crime drama to a Guillermo del Toro-helmed Incredible Hulk TV show to a live-action Powers. Good or bad, the very prospect of seeing superheroes on primetime is exciting. Like I don't watch enough TV!

The Avengers movie!

2012 is shaping up to be the year of the Avenger with what arguably is the most anticipated and unprecedented movie in history! Four different heroes from four different movies coming together to kick epic amounts of ass...not even the ho-hum marketing for this movie can dampen the awesomeness of the idea alone. Chris Evans as Cap, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Robert Downey, Jr. as Iron Man and Mark Ruffalo as the Hulk in a single movie throwing down against that magnificent bastard Loki? Chalk me up as first in line when the calendar hits May 4!

New indie comics!

Creator-owned comics and indies have been growing in strength, and 2012 has a lot of great indies coming out like Van Jensen's Snow White: Through a Glass Darkly to Ed Brubaker's Fatale to even fun stuff like Sharknife Double Z that are all vying for your hard-earned money. If you're tired of the same superhero comics, 2012 is a great year to try something new!

The DCnU!

When DC Comics relaunched their entire line of books, the first thing they did was do story arcs for all their books. Some of those story arcs will be ending this 2012, and so I'm looking forward to what DC is really capable of. Will they do single-issue stories like they said, or will they just do what they always do? Is the DCnU just a crazed fad or is it here to stay? The time for introductions is done. 2012 is the time to get SOMETHING done!

Marvel Legends!

Hasbro's popular line of 6-inch action figures is set to make a comeback this 2012. Wave 1 will feature figures of Steve Rogers, Iron Man, Hope Summers and the return of the Build-a-Figure gimmick in the form of big bad Terrax! And if that wasn't enough, a new Wolverine, Punisher and a Nova Prime are just some of the figures about to become Marvel Legends! My wallet is so angry at me right now...

The Dark Knight Rises!

Bane + Batman + Catwoman + Christopher Nolan + the final installment of the billion-dollar Batman movie franchise + the cryptic promise that  "The Legend Ends" = the one movie in 2012 you and I would be crazy to miss. Will it be the penultimate Batman movie? Is it as bad as everyone hopes it will be? Will we be watching it? That last one you know the answer to!

There you have it, just some of the exciting news and events to look forward to in 2012. From toys to comics to movies, 2012 is set to keep geeks busy the whole year! So what are YOU looking forward to this 2012?

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