Tag Archives: Saga

Jeremy’s Best of 2016

Good day, everyone! Today, I’ll be providing my retrospective post for 2016, much like my fellow bloggers here at Comparative Geeks have been doing. An initial disclaimer: these are merely my opinions and are not intended to be absolute declarations of quality or worth. Also, there won’t be much “worst of” in my post, being as I tend to avoid spending money on things I don’t think I will enjoy. Let’s jump right in!

 

Prose: The Ballad of Black Tom by Victor LaValle

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I have a massive to-be-read list, so I haven’t gotten to read much actually published in 2016, but this piece stands out. The titular Black Tom is a young jazz guitarist living in 1920s Harlem who moonlights as a thief and dealer of occult items—a somewhat lucrative side gig until he crosses paths with a man attempting to wake a certain well-known elder god. If you’re a fan of modern entries in Lovecraft’s mythos, this one is not to be missed.

 

 

Movies: Star Trek Beyond & Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

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Enterprise-A concept art taken from here.

Now, I’m as much of a superhero movie fan as anyone, but my picks for this year are the latest entries in my favorite science fiction franchises since childhood. Both are well-crafted and allusion-filled stories of their respective universes, and Rogue One especially reached me as a tale of a band of damaged misfits making supreme sacrifices for a greater good.

 

 

Returning Television Series: Game of Thrones

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I’ve been a fan of this intellectual property for years, through books, television, games, and what have you. Regardless of the naysayers, I loved this past season and look forward to what comes next.

 

 

New Television Series: Westworld

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You should check out my column right here at Comparative Geeks to see my thoughts on this one. I love well-crafted science fiction about evolving artificial intelligence, and this is my favorite sci-fi show since Battlestar Galactica ended in 2009.

 

 

Returning/Ongoing Comic: Saga by Brian K. Vaughan & Fiona Staples

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Saga returned a few months back after a brief hiatus, and Vaughan and Staples’s weird character-driven science-fantasy drama is still just as addictive. Get back on board!

 

 

New Comic: DC Comics’s Rebirth Line

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For the first time in recent memory, DC is truly giving Marvel a run for its money in the comic book market. Rebirth keeps what worked about the New 52 and reintroduces older concepts and characters established fans have been missing since 2011—the return of the original Wally West and the pre-New 52 Superman paramount among them. The new connections established with Dr. Manhattan and the Watchmen universe are also intriguing concepts that I’m eager to see play out over the next couple of years.

 

 

Video Game: Dishonored 2

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I haven’t gotten to play many new games yet (and not very much in this one so far), but I’m giving it to this dieselpunk first-person revenge/stealth sequel. I love this setting!

 

 

Music: Blue & Lonesome by the Rolling Stones & the Westworld soundtrack by Ramin Djawadi

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The Rolling Stones’s newest album blends their signature sound with the emotional resonance of the blues. It doesn’t seem like it would work, but it does so well. Also, the instrumental music of the Westworld soundtrack (composed primarily by Ramin Djawadi, of Game of Thrones and Pacific Rim fame) is a great companion for thinking and writing, especially the player piano song covers.

 

 

A Note on Loss:

2016 saw some of the most contentious and vitriolic American politics in decades, and the blame for that rests with all of us regardless of slant or belief. I can only hope things will somehow get brighter, and people wiser. And I hope we can truly stem the spread of terrorism and war across the world. Time will tell.

We have also lost a seemingly gargantuan number of well-known faces this year: Alan Rickman, David Bowie, Prince, Muhammad Ali, John Glenn, Ron Glass, Kenny Baker, George Michael, Harper Lee, Umberto Eco, now Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, and many, many others. I’ll be glad when it all finally stops.

Thank you all for coming by and reading my thoughts. Let me know your own thoughts in the comments below. Please take care of yourselves this coming year, and keep coming back here to visit. Thanks again!

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Buy those Image Comics!

It’s Cyber Monday, and that means deals online for stuff. So much of it is appliances and electronics and what have you, from what Holly and I were seeing… but then, there’s some places where there are some great deals going on. One that we jumped on was the Image Comics sale on ComiXology (which ends today!).

Image Comics is more of a publishing house than the big two – DC and Marvel. The creators maintain the rights to their characters and stories, as you can read about on their Submissions page. Some great comics are published by Image, though the flagship right now might be Saga (it’s certainly the featured comic for the sale). Or as Jonathan Hickman put it,

https://twitter.com/JHickman/status/737680758832267264

In fact, my sales pitch is okay… but let’s look back at Hickman’s:

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I was over scanning through his tweets wondering what he was up to (a series written and drawn by Hickman called Frontier being my answer), after his wonderful Marvel-universe-ending run from Fantastic Four through Secret Wars, all of which I’ve blogged on before

https://twitter.com/JHickman/status/703318313653239808

He’s currently all about his Image comics, with East of West being my favorite of those (and prophetic for our times). Picked up what I was missing there in the sale, as well as the whole of Sex Criminals by Matt Fraction (author of Hawkeye) and some other stuff. Expect some comics blogging here soon!

As to Hickman’s point about creators not wanting to do their most creative work with DC or Marvel… it does make sense. And it also actually makes some sense thinking back to Hickman’s work on Avengers: he introduced new versions of a number of pre-existing characters, like Starbrand, Hyperion, Captain Universe, Smasher… There are ways to be creative while not creating much new IP.

https://twitter.com/JHickman/status/733844134088343552

So if you’re looking for something new in comics, if you’re looking for a story that’s not superheroes, or something unexpected, or something in a favorite genre, or something else by that writer you liked or that artist you liked… go check out the Image Comics sale!

New Post Ideas – Reading Reactions

So this is not a normal post because it is more of a commitment to a new post idea that I have been mulling over for a while. I have been really enjoying the LitFlix that we do because I find it fascinating to look at how a book is translated into a movie. At the same time I feel like the only books I am reading lately are the LitFlix, which means that my back log is piling up higher and higher. So I have decided that I am going to try and read one non-LitFlix book a month for the next year. A year is a good amount of time to see if something works and then re-evaluate so I will do it for a year and see how it goes.

The other thing that I want to do is try and read Volume 1 or the first 5 or 6 comics of a series. I really enjoyed reading Locke and Key and Saga. There are a lot more comics that I would like to read and I am hoping this will help me try out a bunch of different options and then share my thoughts with others.

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Catching Up on our Big List of Things

After we ended the A to Z Challenge in early May I did a post about how we had so many things to talk about, so many games to play, so many movies to see and shows to watch.

Now we’re in summer, and while the blockbusters have hit (especially a lot of the LitFlix), the shows have ended (even Game of Thrones!), and we have time to breathe. We also have some of the time-sinks in our personal lives past us. So where are we at? What are we up to? 

I thought I would highlight some of our thoughts on topics moving forward, and some of the things we’ve crossed off that ambitious list of topics. Onward!

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Hawkeye: Comic Series

IMG_0013So being new in comics I was unaware of the types of awards that are given out for comics. I just knew as a thing that people read and had not quite paid much attention to the authors or artists. As I am slowly delving further into the world of comic books, because it is a world, I am finding that author and artist can make a different. If you find an author you like sticking with that author will probably lead toward a good option. The different writing and art styles have been so fascinating to see and just the different way people have chosen to tell their stories.

Back to the awards portion of our show, I recently found out that one of the comics that I recently read and am loving Hawkeye got nominated for seven Harvey Awards and even won Best Cover Artist. So I looked around some more and found the Eisner Awards and Hawkeye actually for Best Artist and Best Cover Artist. I know it is not my work, but it makes me really happy because I really enjoy it and it is nice to see that amongst other creators that it is considered good as well. So here are some of the things I have really enjoyed about it. Continue reading