Features
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Features could be original writing that doesn’t fit into Essays, Reviews, or News – but a feature post will more likely be composed of fun pictures or general nuttiness. We need some place to put it, right?

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By | Sunday, May 30, 2010 | 9:20 pm | 9 Comments | Blog > Features

CBR Forum user Superlantern1987 asked for some Superman recommendations (midway through a thread on some post infinite crisis stuff) and I typed a little Superman starting list for him.

I think if you’re looking to read Superman, but aren’t looking to read everything (I’ll try to limit myself to 10 books/series near the start of superman’s career) this is a sort of good starting list:

The Superman Chronicles Vol. 1 – Where it all started – the other Chronicles are good, but only get them if you really enjoy the golden age. I did – but you might be satisfied after one book.

Superman For All Seasons – My favorite early supes book.

Superman: Birthright – Not bad, some awesome moments, but not the best either. I don’t tend to get as into Superman drawn like tom welling (versus the way he is drawn in all star or for all seasons, which I love).

Superman: The Man of Steel – Volume 1 – essential for understanding modern age (80s and 90s) superman

Superman: Kryptonite – I enjoyed this more for the art than the story, to be honest. But it’s good early reading and doesn’t require much backstory to understand.

Superman / Shazam: First Thunder – Often overlooked, this is an awesome supes story, though it might be more focused on captain marvel. They are one of my favorite team ups, though. It’s done extremely well here.

Showcase Presents: Superman Family Vol. 1 – This is a Jimmy Olsen book, really, but if you want to see what the 40s and 50s were like, this will show you. You can check out other showcase volumes if you want to catch up on Silver and Bronze age.

Superman The Man Of Steel Vol 2-6 – these can be read in succession without worrying about other books between them. Surprisingly, this is only 1987, for 5 books. Obviously DC produces a LOT of superman.

There are a lot of books between them that fill in the blanks, but if you are on a budget, you can probably skip to The Death of Superman, World Without A Superman, and The Return of Superman. Then you’re pretty much up to date on the 80s and 90s at least.

As a side recommendation, any of the Modern Age World’s Finest books are not bad. Superman and Batman, of course. Not that Superboy/Robin one, which was pretty standard fare.

These probably aren’t the most important Superman books, but it was the Superman I grew up with (especially the Death and Return, I must have read and re-read those issues a million times, but I never owned the ending of that saga until a couple years ago when I finally bought the trades! It was major nostalgia hit.) Besides that, I just really enjoy life early superman stories. I like him best when he’s still finding his footing, for some reason.

By the way – I’ll probably be making/tagging an essential superman reading order that contains the main books you HAVE to read, then if you start getting obsessed, like me, you can go back to the full list and fill in the blanks on your shelf. I want to wait until I’ve read a lot more, though, I’m honestly only caught up until 1996 – after that date I’ve only read random books here and there.

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By | Monday, May 24, 2010 | 1:10 am | 0 Comments | Blog > Features

Hey, it’s getting there!

At least now all the books are facing outwards, so I can actually see what I’m doing.

The modern section is almost complete, up to current releases. Pre-Crisis is still filing in – as you can see, I’ve got plenty of showcase books, but I’m sorely lacking in the Archives department.

Once it’s set, it’s going to fit within the three black shelves. At least, with what I have so far. Also, the Vertigo Universe stuff not placed in the DC timeline comes in at the tail, then I’ve also got the Wildstorm Universe stuff on the bottom of that third shelf. I don’t have too many Wildstorm books (missing all of Wildcats and Gen-13 for example) but I do have Authority, Planetary and a couple others in there.

I’m about 330 books away (including upcoming solicitations) from a “complete” trade reading order (though that doesn’t include redundant archives, if I already have the chronicles or showcase versions. Maybe one day I’ll have both, but I think that’s a little excessive. It does include the prestige formats, though! Anything that can fit nicely on a shelf.)

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By | Sunday, May 23, 2010 | 7:59 pm | 0 Comments | Blog > Features

So as you can see, the Recommended Reading Order is an excellent way to sort your books, resulting in an extremely high level of shelf title visibility.

Just kidding. I’m the middle of moving everything around. BIG move. We’ve been working on it for a couple days straight. Here’s the view through the living room into what is going to be our room again soon.

We’ve got double sliding doors that open to the living room, the hallway, and our roommate David’s room. Savannah mansion style architecture, what can I say? Every room has to be fully accessible to several horses, apparently.

Our living room is now a studio. Still couches and videogames in there, but most of it is shelves of art supplies, art books, art theory books, and a lot of floor space for big projects.

All the DCU comics are going to be moved on the wall right next to my work desk. The self contained books, Marvel, and anything else is on new shelves in the hallway, next to the pulp books (sci fi and fantasy). A little while down is going to be “literature”, philosophy and religion.

Our house is kind of intense, actually. All of us living here are really into human production – every nook is filled with some kind of product of human creativity, be it books, records, or any other type of art.

That being said, we’ve got a lot we need to get rid of – the superfluous trades and comics related stuff I’m going to start giving away through this site.

Everything else is currently being put into boxes for donation or sale.

Anyway, once I’m done with reorganizing the comics I’ll take some pics on my real camera (as opposed to my cell phone).

PS. Bonus kitten in that second picture. Just noticed that as I was about to post this.

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By | Sunday, May 16, 2010 | 1:07 pm | 0 Comments | Blog > Features

Is everyone bored and looking up comics? Is this a sunday thing? Because it seems like the Comic Book Database and Comic Book Resources are both down!

Terrible, terrible. Because I was going to continue updating those Fables books and start in on some others, but I’d just have to go back through them again to add the CBDB links, so I’ll have to wait until that site is back up.

I’m just sad about CBR being down because I was going to play on the forums instead of getting other things done. haha

I’m sorry for not getting to the updates I promised last night. Here is why.

We were robbed at the store around 9pm (my roommate, David, corrected me – we were actually jacked). Nothing serious.

Some kids just came in, grabbed our tip jar, and booked it.

So it was only about 60 bucks (split between 7 people, not really a huge loss) but we had to call the cops and make a report, and it interrupted the proofing we were doing (this was right in front of five old ladies and an employee).

Of course, at the same time the printer messed up and ran out of paper a couple minutes later (replacing it in our volume printer is a bit of a pain because it’s under a shelf and needs to be dragged out.)

Neither of the two gals working knew how to handle any of this stuff (both were being trained on register and proofing) so I was running around crazy trying to figure out how to export the security footage for the officer while handling the printer malfunctions, etc. Comes with the manager hat, I suppose.

Add the internet being out, one of our employees being the victim of a hit and run just the afternoon previous, and our store owner being in Venezuela, we were pretty bushed.

So yesterday we all needed a few beers and it became retox to detox night.

Understandably, I hope, work did not get done.

Anyway, today is my day off, so either CBDB comes back and the website sees a few more updates, or I actually sit down and read some comics.

Update: The main CBR site seems to be back up at least, though the forums still aren’t working for me. sad.

Update: Hooray, CBDB is back too! Time to work!

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By | Friday, May 14, 2010 | 5:58 am | 2 Comments | Blog > Features

So I was chatting with @TheFable on twitter about our respective lovely ladies and I mentioned a Batman painting Beth did recently. To those of you who haven’t staggered over here from my other website, you’re probably not aware that my gal and I are both studio artists as our primary professions.

My stuff isn’t generally very applicable to this site (though I’ve got some comics related projects in the pipeline) but Elizabeth Heppenstall is a painter and has done a lot of comic and pop culture related art. On a side note, not everything on our websites is super work safe. Nothing raunchy, but like I said, we’re working artists. ;)

So anyway, here’s that Batman painting sitting in our house (pardon our studio mess, we’ve just started doing a lot of reorganizing). You can click it to see it a little bigger.

Here’s a detail of him:

We haven’t had a chance to do some real copywork lately, so the quality on these isn’t amazing, so I apologize. I love this one though.

(more…)

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