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Messages - Funt Solo

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Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 19 May, 2022, 10:31:27 PM »
Calling Marvel a specific genre  is like calling McDonalds a specific cuisine.

Well, you're right*. I don't think the gist of my post relied on my consistant and correct use of the term "genre", though.

 *(But they've marketed the fuck out of the MCU, enough that people do refer it to it as a cultural unit. A bit like McDonalds.)

Only because people are expressing some surprise at the love for Zenith - I think it's interesting - because obviously there's a time and place aspect to our enjoyment of things. I would preface this by saying that Button Man is a great piece of work, and is really up there - it's not as if I can say that Zenith is necessarily better than it, as a piece of work.

Having said that - Zenith just hit me at the right time - and there's a magical glow in my nostalgia circuits when I hold a prog from that period ('87), that, five years later, didn't exist anymore. Steve Dillon's cover just grabbed me, for a start:

The texture of the prog's cover paper had recently changed, as well - so my memory can *feel* the comic's slight tackiness compared to the pre-520 progs.

The idea of alternate earths (apart from Sideways Scuttleton) wasn't part of my zeitgeist, I'd never read Miracle Man (which people cite as an obvious inspiration for Zenith) and hadn't got into the Cthulhu Mythos, so thought that all the dark gods stuff was terribly original. That, and doing something where superheroes were flawed still felt very new, and something to be proud of in British comics.

And then this story - the hero wasn't one, the heart-felt montage where Red Dragon recuperates ended in brutal tragedy, the person who really saved the day was a once-hippy Alan B'stard. It was just so brutal, and had this weird depth of history thing going on - it didn't pander to the reader by explaining everything for them.

And then Phase II didn't go where I thought it would go, then Phase III mostly ignored the title character, then Phase IV let the dark gods win (despite all the sacrifices of the previous parts) - even if there is a magical Usual Suspects teacup moment. Weirdly, it impressed me by continually upsetting my expectations of what it would become.

So, because of the time and place - Zenith has a magical nostalgia for me that I don't think anything printed in the prog since has any hope of touching - however good it might be. I would say it's Yeowell at the top of his game, as well.

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 19 May, 2022, 03:35:48 PM »
It is interesting as a debate point, though, isn't it? I suppose one might "not like horror movies" - or, y'know, insert whatever genre. But is it weird that people who don't like a Marvel movie are told to just back off if they don't like it. I've watched all the Star Wars movies, and not liked quite a few. Should I not try the next one in the hope that the quality improves?

Thing is, if I went down that path, I'd have missed out on Rogue One (which I rate) and The Mandalorian (which was a bucket o' fun). With Marvel - a lot of which is basically cloning the template of "WHANG! BANG! SAVED THE EARTH AGAIN!", I'd have missed out on WandaVision (and Guardians of the Galaxy) if I'd switched off at the twentieth repeat of Hulk's ennui shoehorned clumsily into a scene where CGI rent-a-baddies swarm around a big city protecting a planet buster.

Corralling any genre (but let's pick on Marvel, because it's on topic) behind "not for you, this" signage surely only plays into Scorsese's notion that they're "not cinema".

See also: 2000 AD. If I'd stopped at The Grudgefather etc.

Strontium Dogs, for Monsters.

Here's the comparison (TTB) of prog, annual and case files. The annual scan is a bit blurry on the RHS as it was in the gutter. You'll notice that the framing is a bit different in the annual - not sure what happened there.

In terms of reproduction, the grey shading effect that Bolland has used for some of the droids just gets turned into mostly black mush by the time it's in the case file. Btw - the case file image is taken straight from the pdf version, the other two I scanned in myself.

re: Father Earth.

I haven't ever looked into it, but are all the previous reprints of "Father Earth" (pre-dating Rebellion's collections) as bad as the versions in Case Files etc.? It was collected in the 1989 Annual, Complete Judge Dredd 12, a couple of Titan editions and there's always the original printing in progs 122-125. Is every version of it in reprint and the original printing as bad for loss of detail etc.?

Scanning from the comics isn't ideal, but for a Bolland Dredd that only runs to four episodes (20-ish pages?) I'm surprised that scanning and cleaning up from the progs hasn't been done by now.

I can tell you that the print in the 1989 Annual is crisp and clean - far superior to the print in the Case Files.

Edit: actually, the annual print is cleaner than the original prog - which I think is down to paper quality. The prog is kind of yellow - the annual is white.

I've never understood the swooning over Zenith...

Pretty sure it's the hair.

Reminds me of Morten Harket.

Frankly, what's not to swoon over?

Pitch Meeting...

Producer: This Hyde character is great - what does he do next?
Screenwriter #1: He bugger's the invisible man to death in a fit of calculated revenge.
Producer: Next!

Desert Island Thrills - would I rather have the entire Button Man or the entire Zenith?


Leviathan is just SO good. Tyranny Rex has been pretty hit and miss (see evidence below). So, for consistent excellence, it has to be Leviathan.


Tyranny Rex: Deux Ex Machina, part 1
Tyranny Rex is a nun seeking redemption, but she's a nun with attitude (and guns)! When the cousins of the baddies from Firekind show up, she's all that stands between the congregation and gruesome annihilation.

Tyranny Rex: Deux Ex Machina, part 2
Tyranny gets teleported to a city policed by floating robo-Elvis heads that only communicate using his lyrics. And she has a magic spirit-ball companion. And then madder stuff happens. I *think* it ends with the rebirth of humanity, with Tyranny as god. And there are songs, so it may qualify as a musical. Any semblance of sane plotting has left the building.

Harlem Heroes (and decidedly not the risible reboot).

I never really got along with Lobster Random - it's too self aware. That was the zeitgeist of the time, I suppose - but a writer continually waving at the audience and pointing out the artifice is just too indulgent to be enjoyed on its own merits. Dirty Frank teeters on the edge of that trap and usually manages not to fall in.

The Dead was also an odd fish, but a Belardinelli-shaped odd fish.

General / Re: Space Spinner 2000AD
« on: 16 May, 2022, 09:37:45 PM »
Fact checking myself: Bob Holness presented the game show Blockbusters and not Countdown. I was so eager to get the James Bond trivia out that I forgot myself. Luckily I didn’t say he played the saxophone on Baker Street.

I'll have a 'P' please, Bob.

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