The Happiest of Surprises.

Star Wars is many things to many people.  Personally for me it is a borderline obsession at times.  I have passed my love of Star Wars onto my son and couldn’t be happier to watch him get the same enjoyment out of it I have.  While I get that he gets more enjoyment out of episodes I-III than I ever will it is the animated universe that really gives us common ground.

Star Wars the Clone Wars was and still is one of our favorite shows.  We both lamented the ending of that series when it was announced.

We would soon be relieved to hear that Disney XD would be bringing a new series to life.  Where the Clone Wars bridged the gap between episodes II and III this new series would start filling in events between III and A New Hope.  We would be seeing the birth of the rebellion.  Needless to say I was excited.

Like other fans I had my own fears for what Disney would do with Star Wars.  As the first season of Star Wars Rebels played out those fears started to fade.  Any doubts I had where laid firmly to rest with the season final “Fire Across the Galaxy”.

Sure that momentary glance of Darth Vader at the end of the episode was great. It was all you could ask for as a set up for the second season.  Yet as great as that was it was the surprise appearance of an old friend that for me made the most impact of that episode.

Yes the showdown between Kanan and the Inquisitor was a pivotal moment for Kanan.  It was masterfully scripted and all the right emotions were played upon.  Yet the real moment that pulled at the hearts strings happened after the escape from Imperial forces.  You know in your heart of hearts that they are going to get away.  When Chopper rides to the rescue supported by blockade runners and the Ghost you get that fist pump in the air moment.  Followed by the question “Who the hell is flying the Ghost”?!  A sentiment voiced by Choppers companions moments later.

Then you hear that voice.  That wonderful voice and your heart tries to jump into your throat.  Sure maybe for a second the idea that it was Lando (who had appeared earlier in the series) riding to the rescue had popped into your head.  But that voice precedes the mystery pilot climbing down from the cockpit.

Ahsoka Tano.

Ahsoka Freaking Tano! I could not contain my happiness.  All the sadness I had experienced when she exited the Clone Wars was erased.  REB_IA_8629-720x405In that moment Disney proved one thing: They love Star Wars as much as we do. I couldn’t have asked for a better season final.


Time Travel Burrito

January 5 2012 was the last time I even thought about this blog.  Some how the days just slipped from my grasp and time vanished into the cosmic void.  I can’t even begin too put my finger on the point where things went all wonky.

My relationship with comics and the nerdy life have been going through an ever evolving “love hate love hate love loath but would still invite to family outings love love hate hate maybe we should see other people” kind of funk.  Which after much reflection lies near the heart of my discontent over the last three years or so.  The core of what made me “me” was being shifted due to changes in my life.

I was suffering from a crisis (dare we say an infinite crisis) of identity.  Comic books started to feel like something I was clinging onto without a real rational reason why.  My love of comics had defined a large part of my personality for so long that this sudden static shift in perception was unsettling.

Who was I if I wasn’t the “comic book guy” in my social circle anymore?

That was the question I didn’t know how to answer.  I had to first step back and look at how my life had changed over that span of time.  Then work through how those changes led to my growing distance and revolving emotional door towards comic books and the culture in general.

In that time I got married. I experienced the loss a few family and friends that passed away. Normally I would have retreated to my refuge of comics for a needed distraction.  Yet I was not happy with what the world of comics was offering me.  I found myself removing more titles from my pull list every month. I kept finding reasons to drop this or that book.  I found myself in the deepest funk ever of my collecting life.

Things finally started to turn around while I was watching a movie from my childhood and enjoying a rather tasty burrito.  I was in the middle of an online conversation with a friend who was going through the same sort of disenfranchisement with comics.  It was during that burrito filled conversation filled with reminiscing and bitching that we helped one another rekindle that spark.

Armed with a new strategy that less can be more we both ended up totally gutting our pull lists.  The only way to regain the joy was to get only what really made us happy.  Why have a pull list that was 30 titles deep when only 9 or 10 books really made you happy?  Cut the fat and just stick with what brought joy.

It was this approach that started to bring some happiness back into my life.  My life had become to cluttered and I was being weighed down by it all.  I found that by cutting out the cluttering in my life I was actually happier.  I hope that this will be a return to wanting to do the blog again on a regular basis.  Only time will tell.

A Case Of The Almost Mid-Life Meh’s

Greetings and salutations yadda yadda yadda. The last six months have been a bit of a black hole. Six months of comics stacked up right next to four months of dvd purchases resulting in one corner of my man cave looking as if it had exploded. The man cave was in need of dire repair after so many months of neglect. It had become a glorified storage locker. Only to be visited long enough to make another deposit to the growing monstrosity that lives in the room.

Processing my way through the never ending stacks I have generally found that I seriously need to reevaluate my reading list. I find myself not wanting to read most of this growing stack..I am find myself falling out of love with comic books (the horror oh the horror)!

The worse part is I can’t for the life of me figure out why.  Could it be that the quality is on a downward spin in the stories I used to love to read?  Am I suffering from “event” fatigue still?  That has to be it!  Must be!  Oh the cursed comic book “event” which ruins the tempo of any good story arc.  Just kicks it right in the knee and makes faces at it!  Probably why I did something I did not ever think I would do.  I kicked the Avengers to the curb.  They no longer occupy a place on my pull list.   This painful decision led to a soda and snack filled bender in which I slashed my pull list right in half..well more like down to a third of its original size.

It is my hope that this will rekindle my love of reading comics.  I hope that narrowing my list down to the books that I can’t wait to read that I will fall in love with comics again.  That I will want to branch back out and try new titles or venture back and see if titles I had dropped can win me back again.  Only time shall tell.

It Hurts So Good.

Did you catch the season final of Star Wars the Clone Wars? Did you cry like a baby at the end (if the answer is no you are a heartless Sith spawn and I hope you take a light saber to the knee)?!

AhsokaOver the last four weeks The Clone Wars has taken fans on an emotional ride centered around fan favorite Ahsoka Tano. The padawan of Anakin Skywalker, Ahsoka has been a strong and positive female character and a fantastic counter balance to Anakin. Her youthful energy played well off Anakin.  She was hopeful and at time doubted herself and her place in the world.  She was caring and grounded Anakin and as their relationship grew you could only wait for the outcome that longtime Star Wars fans tried to wish away.

The animated Clone Wars takes place between Episode II and Episode which Ahsoka does not appear.  It is in Episode III that Anakin finally makes his decent into darkness becoming the Sith lord Darth Vader.  Ahsoka’s absence from Episode III left fans to speculate what her finale fate during the shows run would be.  Would she escape the fate of the other Jedi that died due to Order 66?  Would she meet her final end before the end of the animated series?  As season five teased its four-part ending focusing around Ahsoka answers to those questions were dangled before out eyes.  One sound bite at a time presented in a tantalizing trailer.

In the end it lived up to the billing.  A fantastic four part ending that toyed with your emotions and sent Anakin even farther down his path towards the dark side.  It was bitter-sweet.  Ahsoka is proven innocent only to still be lost to fans of the show as she exited in the closing scene.  Not knowing where the Jedi order fit in her life she chose to leave on her own terms until she could sort things out for herself.

For a season (and now it seems series final) it was all you could ask for and more than you could have hoped for.



I know I am a bit of a slacker…

My lack of blogging has nothing to do with forgetting my password. Totally the truth (mostly) yet the real reason has been lack of time to compose my thoughts into something that made any sense at all. Or at least made sense to someone who was not cracked out on cold medication and a metric shit ton of candy.

Since my last entry life has taken several dramatic changes that struck like a bolt of lighting out of the blue. So much has happened that I could spend the next several months just trying to play catch up. Which would make me late to the party as far as comic book related topics are concerned. A vs X has come and gone after hanging around just a tad to long for my liking. DC has already had to shuffle the new 52 a couple of times leaving me unimpressed with most of the titles and willing to part with most of the ones I am reading. If I am going to stick to my guns about being honest…Marvel and DC are just not doing it for me right now. I have sworn off Spider-Man until they undo the voodoo they did to one of my favorite characters. I would rather give my money every months to Red 5’s Atomic Robo, Darkhorse and their Star Wars titles and IDW’s TMNT books.

Stack O Books!Talking about comics for a minute..have you ever had to move your whole collection? That is facing me right now. I am not sure if I should be proud that I need a moving truck just to get my comics to their new home..or if I should be worried that I might need some sort of 12 step program. The growth of your collection is one of those things that can just get away from you. You don’t notice the number of short boxes you have accumulated until you actually have to move them. I could have sworn the last time I looked it was only 10 boxes. Somehow over the last couple of years those 10 boxes has exploded into (number withheld to keep people from urging a 12 step program is needed)…

Anyone feel like helping a comicaholic move?

No licking the Tardis!

I have been on a quest, at quest that has taken me deep into my inner Geek and into the world of the Dr.  I have even been able to drag a few friends along with me and have converted them into Dr. Who fans.  This journey was spurred on not out of boredom like most of my journeys but out of wanting to experience Dr. Who from start to finish in order. I have been a fan of the modern Dr. Who for years and have been watching it as I can when it runs on BBCAmerica.  The only problem is I keep catching it all out-of-order and for a person that loves continuity it has always bothered me that I have not been able to watch the show in the proper order.

I had started my journey by trying to snag the seasons off Ebay so I could enjoy them at my own pace over the summer but to be the six seasons in physical form and not having to hand out body parts as payment did not seem plausible.  Then I did something spur of the moment and got a Kindle Fire.  What does this have to do with the Dr.?!  How can this have to do with a space man in a big blue box?!  My Kindle came with a free month of Amazon Prime which just happens to have Dr. Who as one of the shows you can stream for free with an Amazon Prime account.  A journey that I had planned to spread out over the summer I have now crammed into just about two weeks.  I have just finished with season 4 as well as the David Tennant specials which bring an end to my favorite Dr. (the 10th played by Tennant) and lead into the current Dr. played by Matt Smith.

It has been a fantastic two weeks Dr. wise as everything has finally been laid before me in proper order for once.  What I have discovered not only in my own reviewing of episodes but in talking with my friends about them is that we all have unique experiences with the show.  The only thing in common is a steadfast devotion to Rose Tyler played by Billie Piper who is the first companion of the modern Dr.  I can’t even think of Dr. Who without thinking of Rose and the 10th Dr.  As important as the companions that follow her are to ever-expanding mythos of the good Dr. it is Rose that seems to shine the brightest.

Rose is so essential to laying the down the core of who the Dr. evolves into so much so that you can’t have the brilliance that is the 11th Dr. and Amy Pond with out the ground work laid out in the three years of the 10th Dr. and Rose (both in her full run of season three and her guest spots there after).

I don’t want this to turn into a Rose love fest but I just can’t help but gush at how powerful her guest appearances are after season 3.  They are some of the most uplifting yet at times heart wrenching moments of the series.  I had thought nothing could top the end of season three when the Dr. vanishes before her eyes leaving both of them heart-broken.  One can only guess (and hope) that he was on the verge of telling Rose that he loved her before vanishing.  This moment is so well scripted and acted that even the hardest heart will waver for a moment.  The loss of Rose in his life impacts his relationship with Martha and Donna who both in their own ways in part help ease the pain of her loss (she gets stuck in an alternative dimension which the Dr. has to seal off preventing her return in order to save reality).

Dr. Who is one of those shows that rewards long time viewers by having plot threads that span multiple seasons.  A seemingly simple plot point from one season could pay off bit time seasons later with fantastic results.  It can take you on an emotional roller coaster making you laugh one moment and scream bloody murder at it the next.  Simply put it is one of the best Sci-Fi shows on TV due to great scripting and high production value.  You need to give this a try if you have not given into the greatness that is the Dr.


All Good Things Must Get Shot In The Face

Someone is getting paid a lot of money to mess up a perfectly fantastic cartoon. If you have not heard about the cancellation of Avengers: Earths Mightiest Heroes then I just burst the happy bubble you have been living in. It has been confirmed that season two will be the final season for this current animated incarnation of the Avengers.

What is the cause for this travesty?! How dare they!? I will stab someone with a pro-tractor! Ok..maybe not a protractor but I am sure at least one of those thoughts might have crossed your mind. Why cancel a perfectly good and frankly well received show? Well if you want the honest truth it is being canceled to make way for an all new Avengers Assemble animated show with a cast that looks a lot like the line up from the recent movie (ya know little film called the Avengers made a bit of money and such).

I am all for putting the ax to bad television but I have a huge problem with putting it to good television. The only logical reason I can see for this is that Marvel might be looking to do for its animated shows what it has done for its movies: give them continuity. This is the only reason that makes sense. I hope it is something logical like this and not the result of Marvel big wigs gathered in a room piss drunk throwing darts at an idea board.

If I am being honest that last option sounds more plausible.  At least we will have the DVD’s!