Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Random Trains of Thought - 3/4/2010

- So apparently Nick Simmons actually responded to the plagiarism allegations that have been all over the interwebs for the past week or two. It seems like somewhat stock comments. Can't tell if he's actually sorry or not either way; hard to gauge reaction from just text and all that.

I've got to say that I am kind of surprised he said anything at all. I honestly expected he'd either hide out of public sight until the heat died down or ignore the controversy entirely. So there's that. One has to wonder if he's ever going to be able to work in comics again though. "You'll never work in this town again" seems appropriate.

In all the furor, the biggest question of all seems to have been overlooked though: Why Bleach? So-so art. Rarely any background detail in a given panel. If you're going to pull a no-no and rip a dude off, shouldn't it be work that's... you know, really good?

- So... a dude goes to prison over buying lolicon manga? They'd better get out the riot gear and the shotguns then, because they need to immediately head over to their nearest manga convention and start ruining folks shit. No worries, it would be for the best; those guys had it coming.

Seriously though, this is kind of disturbing. Pedophelia is an awful crime, but that's not what's going on here. Dude's going to prison for reading a pedo comic. Lines on a paper. What would that be classified as? A thought crime? Going to prison for something you've not even done, basically. That's kind of scary, really; it reminds me of "Minority Report" in a way, only without the psychic mutants.

I suspect this might lead to a future where Tom Cruise bursts in your house to arrest you for thinking about illegally downloading Scientology pamphlets for shiggles.

- I really wish I knew what the hype was all about when it comes to Grand Theft Auto IV. The game felt like a step down from San Andreas in the wrong ways. It's a good game, but what exactly has been prompting people to call it "perfect"? Because it really isn't.

- Confession time. I'm not really looking forward to "Teen Titans: Games". This seems almost blasphemous considering what a Titans mark I am, but I just can't muster up any excitement for it, George Perez art or not. Part of the problem is that I really don't feel like revisiting an era DC can't even be bothered to give proper, comprehensive trade collections to; it sucks as it is that I can't easily delve into that era, so a new story from that era is more like a cocktease than anything else. Another part is because I know the damn thing's not going to see softcover for about a year, if at all; those OGN projects don't seem to me to be the kind of thing that has a softcover ramped into production.

But really, a large part of it is that I think I'm just burnt on the Titans right now. I honestly don't care. I keep up with the teen team largely to see what's going on with Beast Boy and Raven - as well as whether anything's happening between the two - but otherwise I could really just care less about the franchise right now. The Teen title is in the hand of a novice writer, the roster aside from Gar and Rae is pretty much shit, Wonder Girl irritates me to no end, the Titans book is going into a "villains for hire" era - which, to my chagrin, seems like it will include Jericho - and DC just really does not seem to know just what the hell to do with the books. So really, I'm not all that interested in, well, anything Titans related right now.

Can we just get Geoff Johns back on Teen Titans please? I'd love to feel excited about the book again. But you're not exactly giving me any reason to be, DC.

- I'm really getting tired of all the silence surrounding the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles property. We're closing on five months since Peter Laird sold the franchise lock, stock and barrel to Nickelodean and we've heard little more than that Nick plans on immediately working on a new show and feature film. I really want to know what is up with the comic section already; I'm nervous enough already that we may not see any more reprints or Turtles comics. Nick remains silent.

Would it kill them to make a statement at least saying if they plan to do anything with the comic rights or not?

- Reread the first Predator omnibus from Dark Horse recently, or at least some of it so far. Some pretty good stories, all things considered. But it's also bittersweet; the three Mark Vierhieden mini's end on a cliffhanger with few of the running plot threads resolved. It wouldn't be so bad if the chief mystery of the stories - just what happened to Dutch Shaefer after Predator - had been given even a remotely satisfactory wrap-up, but it's left unresolved at the end of the third. I don't see any mention of a conclusion being made down the line. Why leave it so damn unresolved? Dark Horse could easily have done a one issue special to wrap the plots up; hell, they did done in one's with Aliens all the time.

- Finally got around to playing Shadow Complex. Games totally bitchin'. And hey, it sold really well too. Proof positive that if Nintendo were smart it would actually, you know, put effort into a 2.5D Metroid title. But of course, the key words here are Nintendo and smart, which considering Nintendo's track record with the franchise, just does not apply to Metroid.

Thankfully Metroid: Other M looks cool, but it's looking like there's no 2D gameplay to be found; I loved the Prime games, but sweet jesus what is it going to take to get a new 2D Metroid?

- It's always nice to know there's still justice in the world. After Infinity Ward recently made piles upon piles of cash for them, Activision turned around and did the logical, sensible thing to do... mainly firing the head guys of developer Infinity Ward. The perfect way to show your appreciation.

If nothing else, it pretty much solidifies that Activision simply doesn't give a damn. Infinity Ward is just an arm to them that they can wrestle to the ground; Activision knows the Call of Duty name is going to sell no matter how many interwebs cry boycott, which is probably the saddest part of all. Truthfully, I don't even play Call of Duty so it doesn't bother me at all, but I think about it and mention it mainly because I find it very sad. This is exactly the kind of crap Activision has been pulling a lot lately, but gamers talk a big game and that's about it; when it comes time to vote with their wallets they still buy Activision products. So when it comes down to it, I'm not sure who the real villains are here.

- Hoo boy... Justice League: Cry for Justice. Thanks a lot. Not only did you needlessly slaughter a supporting character I liked in #7, but now I'm going to have to listen to people across the comics internet bitch about DC Comics and how terrible it is and OMG they're dropping everything forevah for the next month (same thing happens with Marvel when they stumble and it pisses me off almost as much). I'm not sure which is worse; I hold contempt for comics fandom as it is, but every time this happens the reactions make me wish most comic message boards would be nuked by fatal errors just that much more.

- On the other hand, Cry for Justice seems to have gotten Green Arrow back into his "Longbow Hunters" MO of killing baddies. Which is probably a long time in coming. Time will tell if anyone makes anything of it - I highly doubt it will be Robinson - but that one bit is interesting at the least, I guess. Still, the whole thing pretty much solidifies that DC really has no clue what to do with Green Arrow, similar to the current state of the Titans franchise. But unlike the latter mentioned, I can understand why Green Arrow might be a bit difficult to do anything with.

- So I recently discovered the existence of Arnold Schwarzenegger tribute band Austrian Death Machine through a friend. If you like heavy thrash, they're well worth giving at least a listen to. The vocals can be a bit too death-metal-growly for my taste, but it's not bad enough to detract from some hilarious - and talented - music.

- Where's my Prey sequel dammit?

- I really don't get why some people would prefer Dick Grayson stay under the Batman cowl. Most of his story deals with trying to live up to Bruce's legacy and not even wanting the job, really. Once that exhausts itself, what's really left? Better to let Morrison tell and end his story with Dick under the cowl than drag it out until the quality taints said era like other replacement era's I could mention. Besides which, most other writers don't seem to know how to write Dick different from Bruce like Grant Morrison does, which makes having him under the cowl in the first place entirely pointless.

Speaking of Bruce, do want Return of Bruce Wayne.

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