Morning BS: Why read Max Landis’ Superman: American Alien In 250 words or less

The genius visionary behind Chronicle, American Ultra and Victor Frankenstein hits the world of comics with one of the greatest Superman books of all time and you need to read it!

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While Superman might be one of the most Iconic superheroes of all time he isn’t particularly liked by a large portion of the comic book fandom. I mean, why choose Superman’s vanilla when you can have Green Lantern’s mint choc chip, right? It’s tough to write a Superman book at the best of times and normally it ends up being a played out battle between Superman and Lex or another alien threat, but occasionally a writer comes along and turns the man of steel on his head. Last year, Max Landis did just that.

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Landis tracks Clark Kent’s growth from a young boy all the way through to manhood. We see the evolution of Superman across seven issues which include tonnes of extra short stories and single panel pieces that Landis has incorporated to create a full picture of the Man Of Steel. It’s a story of moral and physical evolution that keeps interesting and light hearted for the average reader while also throwing in tonnes of stuff that long term Superman fans will love. If you only read one Superman story make it this one.

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I’ve got a few words left so I’ll just say this: Boyhood meets the best Man of Steel has to offer…what more could you want?

You can pick American Alien up for £12.99 digitally through the DC Comics app or in graphic novel form for £12.51 from Amazon

Have you read American Alien or are planning to? Let me know in the comment section down below, on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/Beartrails/ or on Twitter at: https://twitter.com/BearTrails

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bearsleuthWritten by: Patrick Lunn

Morning BS: Batman’s Patrol Playlist

When the Caped Crusader is cleaning up the streets of Gotham he needs the perfect backing track and the BearSleuth has some recommendations.

Batman has always been dark and brooding, resigned to fighting a never ending roster of villains that plague his city’s streets. There has to be a point where that gets boring. I’m sure there would come a night where the Dark Knight starts to fight with his Spotify playlist booming out of his cowl. With that in mind I’ve created three playlists for Gotham’s Protector:


Rooftop Workout


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This is essentially to get Batman’s blood up. If this playlist fails to psyche him up then nothing will…

  • Harder Better Faster Strong – Daft Punk
  • Last Resort – Papa Roach
  • Numb – Linkin Park
  • You’re Gonna Go Far, kid – The Offspring
  • Bring Me To Life – Evanescence
  • Spitfire – The Prodigy
  • Welcome To The Jungle – Guns ‘N’ Roses
  • Woman – Wolfmother
  • Icky Thump – White Stripes
  • Lonely Boy – The Black Keys

Give it a listen on Spotify here.


Bat-mobile Drive-time


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The perfect playlist for smashing down walls and completely disregarding all rules of road safety.

  • Born Slippy (Nuxx) – Underworld
  • Banana Brain – Die Antwoord
  • Assassin – Muse
  • Back At The Funny Farm – Motörhead
  • Crazy Train – Ozzy Osborn
  • Kickstart My Heart – Mötley Crüw
  • Rap God – Eminem
  • Shippin’ Out To Boston – The Dropkick Murphys
  • Cochise – Audioslave
  • Cowboys From Hell – Pantera

Give it a listen on Spotify here.


Bat-Cave Wind Down


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After a long night get you butler to message your feet (sorry Alfred) and chill out to these modern classics.

  • Human – Rag ‘n’ Bone Man
  • Redbone – Childish Gambino
  • Icarus Instinct- Mr Key & Greenwood Sharps
  • Hold On We’re Going Home – ASTR
  • The Scientist – Coldplay
  • Old Pine – Ben Howard
  • Colors (Audien Remix) – Halsey
  • Starboy – The Weeknd
  • Controlla – Drake
  • One For The Road – Arctic Monkeys

Give it a listen on Spotify here.

Do you agree?  What tracks would you add or remove for Batman’s playlist? Let me know in the comment section down below, on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/Beartrails/ or on Twitter at: @BearTrails

Also if you want daily BS remember to sign up for emails or follow with your WordPress account.

bearsleuth

Written By: The BearSleuth

 

The BearSleuth Week Geek Out – LaMarr And Snyder And Bears…Oh My!

This week I am determined to get this feature up at a reasonable time! Last week was just a trial run but this is absolute prime time professionalism in article form. Unfortunately, to my knowledge their is very little to talk about in the world of television so I’m going to jump across and examine what’s going on over at YouTube. Apart from that all I have to say is that it’s been a damn good week and I hope all you back-to-schoolers are settling in well.

The Week In Comics


 

This week is looking pretty strong in the world of comics, the shelves are pretty densely packed and their is certainly a lot of talent to be found. An underground hit of the week has to be Scarlet Witch #10 which is pretty much a perfect self contained story for the character looking at her role in the magical community. Over with the Team Aqua that is DC we have some awesome titles including All-Star Batman #2 and Suicide Squad #2 showcasing talent from two of the greatest creators in the comic book industry, Snyder and Lee.

Marvel’s Team Magma are looking sound all round with some brilliant tie-in titles but my pick of the week has to go to Amazing Spider-Man Civil War II #4, which has to be one of the most complex titles I have ever written. The finale of the Amazing Spider-Man tie-in is probably going to place the series as the strongest of the Civil War II tie-ins to date as it fully succeeds in an examination of the main themes of the event. If you are only going to pick up one tie-in make it this one…then maybe squeeze your budget for the X-Men tie-in as well!

The Week In Film


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Well this week I actually went to see a film which I can talk about, Don’t Breathe. This film was pretty much schlock of the highest order with a particular scene added in just for shock value and so the film can be ‘the film that went there’. I actually think this is a horror targeted at a more female audience as the shock scene is harder to relate to from a male perspective, which probably goes a long way to spoiling it. The male characters are embarrassingly weak but the female lead, played by Jane Levy, seems to have a good amount of depth to her. The villain is essentially, old and evil Daredevil and I find that the film makes a lot more sense in that light.

Like I said up top, there’s not really much in the way of TV news from me at the moment, just finished Stranger Things which gave me a new appreciation for child actors and small-town sci-fi. Heading over to YouTube, Fatman On Batman just interviewed Phil LaMarr and you have to see it if you are in anyway a geek. My YouTube tastes are fairly vanilla but I recommend Yahtzee19,  KaptainKristian and Vuepoint’s Jack’s World if you are looking for something new.

The Week In Gaming


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Pre are in the ten week countdown for Pokemon!!! Like any good fan I’m attempting a run through of HeartGold, Pearl, Black, White 2, X and finally Omega Ruby before grabbing a copy of Sun. I’m going to be grabbing a bunch of grass starters in the way, the unloved Ringos of Pokemon starters, and basically getting myself back in that ten-year-old mind-set. Apart from that I’m continuing a play through of Dark Souls with Ollie from LoneWolfGaming and playing Until Dawn with Will, the BearSleuth camera man.

In Other News…


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The world is teetering on the brink of disaster from a take over of regional pronunciation starting with a plague of government sponsored academies and there will be more news coming on the new BearSleuth writer later this week. That’s about it for this week folks but be sure to come back next week for more sleuthing!

…That was this week’s BearSleuth Week Geek Out!!! Check back on Friday for a brand new article!!!

BearSleuth Week Geek Out

Like I said in my last post, it’s becoming a lot hard to find time for my normal Sleuthing, which is why this new feature is coming to you a little late. I wanted to make sure I gave it my full attention and due to a quick trip to A&E that became borderline impossible, I managed to tear some muscles in a fight with a bird table (don’t ask). Anyway, I have a lot to talk about so I think it’s time to stop faffing about and get stuck in!

The Week In Comics


It’s been a really good week in the world of comics. While the shelves were a little sparse, DC knocked out a few brilliant books with the new Tom King Batman Issue Six probably taking the top spot from the blue corner. Over in the red of Marvel is my top pick for the week, Jeff Lemire’s Moon Knight. This book is complex, intelligent and really shows what the modern industry techniques developed in the independent market can add to the mainstream. I also read Asterios Polyp this week and I can whole heartedly say that it is the only graphic novel to have changed my life. If you are able to get your hands on a copy you 100% should.

The Week In Film (And TV)


The run up to Doctor Strange is gripping a lot of comic book fans now with the inevitable ‘I want to get into Doctor Strange…’ posts slowly creeping onto reddit. For anyone looking for a Doctor Strange recommendation, it’s pretty hard as most of his stuff comes from the silver and bronze age of comics which can feel very dated. Check out ‘The Oath’ and maybe Jason Aaron’s new Doctor Strange series as they present the more modern take on the character.

In other news, Rogue One is struggling, to no one’s surprise (this is what happens when you put a Godzilla director on a Star Wars flick). Also a Dark Tower trailer will be airing next month so keep your peepers peeled. Turning to TV quickly, apparently the Luke Cage series looks good and the new Ghost Rider looks okay enough to get people to notice Agents Of Shield still exists.  Personally, I’ve been getting into Stranger Things and I’m going to surprise no one by saying it’s a great show, likely to become the next massive hit.

The Week In Gaming


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This week saw the world of console gaming reveal its massive throbbing erections for the PC master race as consoles take that one bold step into becoming computers. I don’t really care for 4k optimisation so I can’t say this affects me but if you are one of those graphics snobs then this…probably doesn’t matter to you because you already have a gangster rig (or whatever the cool kids are calling it). Deus Ex is gracing the shelves again, which is cool as we don’t have enough ultra-gritty cyberpunk dystopia running around. This week I’m replaying Dark Souls 3 and Bloodborne because I’m a masochist when it comes to gaming.

And Finally…


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In other news, the world is teetering on the edge of destruction from the imminent threat of a mass custard pie orgy at the top of Trump tower and I am proud to announce that we are adding another writer to the BearSleuth roster. While I’m not ready to say much yet SHE is a perfect fit for the team and I’m sure HER articles are going to be a great hit!

Subtlety was always one of my strong points.

…That’s this week’s BearSleuth Week Geek Out!!! Check back on Friday for something new!!!

BearSleuth Spoiler Free Comic Book Bundle Week Fifty

For the first time in recent memory the shelves in my local comic book store looked a little bare. With the exception of a handful of tie-ins, there is now Civil War II has ground to a halt, leaves us to wait another week for a main book. On top of that this week there are no DC Rebirth titles, well to be honest there’s a Suicide Squad mini-series but nothing of any substance. So this week we are looking at the fringes and a few highlights I’ve been wanting to cover for awhile which, for one reason or another, haven’t really shown up on my list. Trust your humble Sleuth, I’ll see you right!

All images are screenshots taken from the Marvel and DC Comics apps [Accessed:02/09/2016]

Civil War II: Choosing Sides Issue Five By A Whole Phalanx Of Artists


 

I love Justin Trudeau! I might not know that much about Canadian politics, and the little I do know has come from a close friend and John Oliver, but it is great to see the Canadian Prime Minister turning up in the pages of a Marvel comic. I can’t say there is much more in this book to write home about but Trudeau’s presence is pretty cool. His section is written by Chip Zdarsky who delivers his usual mixture of tongue-in cheek humour and heart. The book is fairly mediocre from there on out making it hard to recommend but as a piece of political-comic book history it’s a highlight of the year.

Guardians Of The Galaxy Issue Eleven By Brian Michael Bendis And Valerio Schiti


 

The Guardians have just come off a monster arc, a planetary-wide cataclysmic arc that is 100% worth your time and attention. This issue is more of the calm before the storm. A brief reprieve setting up the major players in the next epic arc. There’s a lot of interesting character interactions as well as plenty of nods and winks towards the fans. It’s an issue that build heart and character. There really isn’t much to say past that, Schiti’s art is fairly tight and the set up for the big Civil War II tie-in is nice but if you want a big action set piece this is not the one for you. If you like the Guardians grab this book.

Han Solo Issue Three By Marjorie Liu And Mark Brooks


 

When you think of Han Solo you think of the rogue with the heart of gold and this story is entirely based around this concept. Marjorie Liu has created the perfect boys own adventure storyline in space and it is no small wonder that I am completely wrapped up in it. Han gets the cool lines and the brilliant stunts while the pulse racing action hammers on in a plot that will satisfy any Star Wars fan. The art by Mark Brooks is nice and has a lot of subtle detail for an eagle eyes reader. This is a big winner all round for me and is fully worthy of your time.

Ms. Marvel Issue Ten By G. Willow Wilson, Takeshi Miyazawa And Alphona


 

Most of the time the high school drama of super heroics wears thin with me. I don’t like the whinny emo stuff as I’ve been there and I know how much it makes you want to gouge out your own eyes years later. However, in Ms. Marvel G. Willow Wilson has worked hard to make the high school drama mean something, for it to deeply effect the heroine and her heroics. This book is a big Civil War II tie-in and I feel that it will be known as one of the hidden gems of the event for years to come. I like this book and if you are willing to try something different this is a great choice.

Rocket Raccoon And Groot Issue Eight By Nick Kocher And Michael Walsh


 

Well Skottie Young has left the building…whether he will come back or simply leave us hanging while he pens ‘I hate Fairyland’ is unknown as of writing this but I dare say he will emerge with another great idea soon. What isn’t unknown is that Nick Kocher was the only man who could have stepped into Young’s clownish shoes. His take on the title partnership is fantastic, funny and fierce. The story is a loose Civil War II tie-in with more of the group hijinks bubbling up to the surface. If you like the Guardians and you fancy a laugh this is the place to be.

Spider-Man Issue Seven By Brian Michael Bendis And Nico Leon


 

Can something finally happen in these issues? I love Bendis’ slow approach to character development with a lot of brilliantly handled teenage drama but I’m really getting sick of Spider-Man struggling to be Spider-Man. I feel like this story is just ticking over until Bendis can move off his other nineteen projects and give it full focus. I know that next issue or the one after my thoughts will be completely different again but for now I’m a little bored of Spider-Man. If you are a fan of Bendis or Miles or Spider-Man then stay tuned but this might be one you can miss.

BearSleuth Pick Of The Week: Tokyo Ghost Issue Ten By Rick Remender And Sean Murphy


 

Tokyo Ghost is over. Perhaps one of the greatest comics of the last year and it is finished, with chances if a sequel looking middling at best. So how did it all pan out? Perfectly. I know I’m speaking with a bit of fan boy biased here but, I cannot find a flaw in this finale. It’s a brilliant end to a brilliant book and I want every one of you reading this to go pick up the first trade paperback. This is the quiet riot we need in this digitally swamped age and it’s truly beautiful. If that doesn’t sell you on it I’m not sure what will.

Uncanny Avengers Issue Thirteen By Gerry Duggan And Ryan Stegman


 

Another issue of set up as we ease into a Civil War II tie-in. I don’t have much to say about this issue as it simply runs through a few team members and show us their roles in the coming war. It’s fun and if you wanted a little more depth after the main Civil War II books then I can highly recommend it but past that this is in one ear and out the other. This is the worst sort of book to review as its so on the fence, there is nothing offensively bad or angelically good to talk about so I will leave the recommendation to you. Sleuth. Out.

…That was this week’s BearSleuth Spoiler Free a Comic Book Bundle!!! Check back later today for a new OpinionatedDavid article!!!

BearSleuth Spoiler Free Comic Book Bundle Week Forty Four

It’s weeks like these that I live for as a comic book fan. I walked into my local comic book store today to be faced with a barrage of amazing titles backed up by the tightest of creative teams. DC are leading with their best foot forward this week with a triple hit of Batman, Justice League and Superman that will leave any reader breathless. To top that we’ve got a new Deadpool series and the beginning of a new Star Wars arc that will knock you off your feet. And while you’re on the ground there’s a left hook from Snotgirl and I Hate Fairyland to knock your socks off once and for all. Needless to say, I have survived this assault, wrestled my socks back on, and I’m ready to give you the official BearSleuth play by play.

 

All images are screenshots taken from the Marvel and DC Comics App [Accessed: 22/07/2016]

 

Batgirl And The Birds Of Prey Rebirth One-Shot By Julie Benson, Shawna Benson And Claire Rose


 

We’re starting with the weakest of the bunch this week but please don’t take that as a put down for Batgirl And The Birds Of Prey. This year has seen a Ghostbuster’s reboot that handled female characters with a greater care that the rest of the film industry and I feel there is a parallel to be drawn between that film and this book. The mainstream of the comic book industry has had a love-hate relationship with female characters and this book goes a long way to break away from the classic problems. Ever since Gail Simone’s work on Batgirl, and arguably before, the character has stood as a feminist icon in the industry and this book continues that tradition while also working not to sound preachy in its approach. The Benson’s merit the highest praise for making another great female-lead piece and, with Claire Rose’s artwork, this book deserves your attention and support.

 

Batman Issue Three By Tom King And David Finch


 

Sometimes I claim that a certain book would be the pick of the week if only it had fallen in another week because there is another book that has just blown it out the water, but even that doesn’t justify my situation this week. This week might contain two of my favourite comic books of the year and it is only because the other one might start a whole new trend in the industry that Batman Issue Three is not my pick of the week. This book does everything perfectly, the writing is so perfect that I cannot find a sing word that seems out of place or unnecessary, there is an elegance to King’s writing which I can only describe as otherworldly. The structure of the piece stands alone as a piece of art examining the soul of Batman whilst also falling neatly into the ongoing narrative of the book. I have a feeling this is a piece we will be studying for years as a paragon of writing and design in the medium. The artwork is solid here as well as it is simple, allowing the writing to hold the reader’s attention. This is a book and a series you need to follow. A modern classic.

 

Deadpool & The Mercs For Money Issue One By Cullen Bunn And Iban Coello


 

A Deadpool book that doesn’t just rely on one liners and instead turns change with heart and integrity while still perpetuating a sense of levity. Madness. Deadpool & The Mercs For Money continues Cullen Bunn’s trend for playing the character of Wade Wilson as a tragic anti-hero, a trend that has evolved over the years with the character. We see in this issue how Deadpool deals with his reputation in the wider hero community whilst also witnessing the further establishment of the Mercs For Money as individuals. There is also a reintroduction of a fan favourite character that I’m sure will be a pleasant treat for both comic readers and movie goers. This is a solid book and if you are a Deadpool fan then you need to pick it up.

 

I Hate Fairyland Issue Seven By Skottie Young


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I’ll be honest, I always had a good feeling about this series but I never quite expected it to be so strong and to grow such a wide fanbase. I Hate Fairyland is one of the first Image comics (after Walking Dead and Sex Criminals) that I have found non-comic book readers talking about. This is something I love to see and I really think it’s a great sign for the industry as it shows that not only the super hero books are finding their place in the mainstream. This book deserves major attention as well as it is unlike anything else on the shelves and a thoroughly original concept, with only gentle nods of the head to works such as Discworld. Skottie Young knows how to rock out in the art department and he makes sure to splash as much colour and life into every panel as possible. This is another series you should check out, even if you hate comic books this could be the one to turn your head.

 

Justice League Issue One By Bryan Hitch And Tony S. Daniel


 

The big buzzword everyone liked to use when talking about Geoff John’s Justice League series was ‘epic’ but I have a feeling that we are going to have to start toping that with a phase such as ‘divine opera’ when talking about Hitch’s run. The second panel in this book is a double page spread that just tells you everything you need to know about Hitch’s vision for the Justice League and how they should appear going forward. Hitch gets the idea of micro-macro writing that has always been at the heart of the series as we open on one of the most terrifying world catastrophes imaginable while we also see various personal dramas begin to show between the team mates. It’s this level of writing talent, coupled with pencil work by industry mainstay Tony S. Daniel that leaves us with a worthy successor to the work of Johns, Lee and Fabok. This is the start of something big, get in on the ground floor.

 

BearSleuth Pick Of The Week: Snotgirl Issue One By Bryan Lee O’Malley And Leslie Hung


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If you had asked me twenty four hours ago what my favourite book of the year is I would not have been able to give you an answer and I would probably have defaulted to Tom King’s Batman or Vision series. Now I can definitively say I know the answer. Snotgirl is the newest creation from Bryan Lee O’Malley, creator of Scott Pilgrim, and I think it might be his magnum opus. The concept is an original dramatic satire on modern life with the sort of out of the box approach that both O’Malley and Image have become famous for. There is a perfect sense of character from start to finish and the personality of even bit players seems to shine through. It’s interesting to see O’Malley moving to the writer’s seat while letting Leslie Hung take over on the artwork front but I think it’s fair to say that O’Malley, while having a style that complements his own writing, has never been the strongest in the art department. Hung works perfectly with O’Malley’s script creating a piece that doesn’t deserve to be in your collection but instead simply needs to be there.

 

Star Wars Issue Twenty One By Jason Aaron And Jorge Molina


 

The Darth Vader comic series is about to finish and I think it’s fair to say it has had a great run, that means it’s time for Marvel to attempt to catch lightning in a bottle for a second time with another Star Wars villain. If you missed the subtle hint on the cover of this issue, this issue appears to be a disguised-pilot for a Stormtrooper mini-series. As you would expect, this immediately triggered my critical defences like a fresh piece of meat being thrown into the lions pit but I have to say I like what we’ve been presented with here. The Stormtrooper squad look interesting and are each compelling enough character’s that they can pull off the anti-hero approach easily. Aaron has put in the work here and I have to say that it pays off in story that will delight Star Wars fans.

 

Superman Issue Three By Peter J. Tomasi, Patrick Gleason And Jorge Jimenez


 

I left this one to last. Honestly, I tried everything to escape reviewing this book, after loving the first two issues I really wanted to love this one two but I had been put off by the ending of the second issue and I didn’t want this issue to shatter my hope for a strong Superman series. I am happy to say that nothing of the sort happened when I read Superman Issue Three. This is a great piece and with the fantastic writing talent of Tomasi and Gleason behind it the book continues to deliver a plot that manages to drill to the core of what superman should represent. The art by Jimenez is sublime and there really is little else I can say about it. If you want a good Superman story you finally have one!

…That was this week’s BearSleuth Spoiler Free Comic Book Bundle!!! Check back today at 6pm for a new Adaptive Panels!!!

BearSleuth Opinion Piece: Comic Con Is Upon Us!

Every hobby community has it’s sacred holiday day. If you try to ask my football mad Dad to do anything while the world up is on then you are going to be lucky to get anything more than a vague grunt from him. I tried to get into contact with our very own gaming gremlin, VuePoint, while E3 was on and I didn’t get a single reply until the presentations were over. Now it’s my turn. I’m your friendly neighbourhood comic book guy and tomorrow marks the start of San Diego Comic Con. For the best part of a week the San Diego Convention Centre will become a temple for geekdom and at the heart of it will be every major comic book publisher from the titans of Marvel and DC all the way through to the rising success stories of the indie landscape. Whether it’s talking about new storylines, fielding questions from the wider community, looking at artist portfolios or teasing future events, the comic publishers will be acting as the high priests at the comic con temple and I can wait to see what gifts they conjure from the ether. On top of the comic book stuff there will hundreds of movie, video game, war game and reading events, promotions and announcements. Every year the convention gets a little bigger and this year is already set to top it’s predecessors.

How Can You Get A Piece Of The Action?


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If you are going to comic con I’m pretty sure you know by now and, unless a love one is about to surprise you with tickets, you might have to consider another to get involved with the event. If you have ever tried to follow E3 or EuroGamer then you should have a pretty good idea how this works. You can watch everything going down at comic con (except for close-doors reveals) on a stream, I personally recommend IGN as they tend to have strong coverage across the entire event but both Marvel Comics and the Hollywood Reporter have their own streams which are worth checking out. Obviously, as many of our readers are British, remember to check the stream’s schedule and then factor in any relevant time differences as not to miss anything. If you come across a point in the schedule that your stream isn’t covering then hop onto one of the others. This will get you closer to San Diego Comic Con however you can go one step further.

The Real Action.


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Jump back forty six years to the very first San Diego comic con, there were barely any attendees and it was essentially a few round table discussions with some of the industry big wigs and the fans. In fact, there was so little interest and funding that the industry had to put on a convention three months before ‘the big one’ just to fund the handful of guests they had. I tried to scour the internet for an image from these first conventions but they just didn’t even have the profile for a photographer, the earliest image I could find is the one above from the 1972 convention. Then things began to change slowly and with each year the panels and the guests profile began to get bigger and bigger. This year’s convention is only a worldwide phenomenon because of the tireless support of fans just like you and me. When enough people put their will behind something it can become bigger than any of them imagined, that’s the idea behind all these super heroes we love and that’s the idea behind comic con. Batman is just Bruce Wayne in a fancy suit right? Fuck no. He is a piece of our modern mythology, he is the modern Zeus or Thor. Our will lends him power. So if the fans before us could turn a few fans sitting around a table with a writer into one of the biggest events in the world why can’t we do it again?

Local Action


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About a decade ago (depending on who you ask), London played host to its first film and comic book convention, now it’s the third biggest comic book convention in the world. A few years ago, Manchester played host to its first comic book convention, which has almost doubled in size and success with every year to the point that it is now pretty much taking over the city in two weeks. Two years ago my home town of Wigan played host to its first comic convention and in only two years it’s seen a huge increase in prestige. These conventions are happening all the time and they are spreading like wildfire, so go out and get involved with the closest on to you, volunteer, exhibit or just simply attend. If there isn’t a comic book convention near you go and start one! Who knows forty six years from now you might be introducing the next Iron Man to your main stage or watching as the world is rocked by holographic technology that lets you become Batman. Anything is possible with enough will. If you think nerds don’t get that then just look at Green Lantern, we created a freaking hero dedicated to the concept…

BearSleauth Opinion Piece: Why should you go to comic con? (Revisited)

With San Diego comic con coming up in a couple of weeks and me on holiday this week I thought it would be a good idea to revisit an article I wrote just after comic con last year about why you should go to a comic con an how you can go about attending such an event. I’ve altered the piece a little but some of the references will seem a little old. Give this a quick read then check back next week for a brand new BearSleuth Opinion Piece!

San Diego Comic Con finished last week but that doesn’t mean you can’t go to Comic Con! This Sunday I am traveling up North to attend Manchester’s MCM Comic Con and it’s more exciting to me than receiving a season ticket for Manchester United. Why? Because Comic Con is amazing. In one of the panels for Supermansion, a new series from the creators of Robot Chicken, Seth Green said that Comic Con feels like home for him, and it does for me as well. Comic Con is a home for anyone interested in anything to do with pop culture whether it’s Doctor Who, Naruto or Despicable Me.

One of the problems I had when I wanted to start going to comic cons is that it was hard to find a convention, most were only advertised with posters and flyers due to a lack of budget. That’s how it used be, then the pop-culture revolution happened and now we have the MCM Expos, some of the best and most affordable comic cons in the country and they are everywhere with a comprehensive list of venues.

I can guarantee there will be one a month throughout most of the next year, so pick one and go. There’s always a great list of special guests from comic book artists to actors to writers and there really is something for everyone. You need to pre-book tickets as they quite often run out on the day. Pre-booked tickets cost around £9 each and there are special rates for children, you can also splash out on priority tickets to get in a little earlier and skip some of the queuing for around £14.

MCM Comic Cons are a great way to get started with the convention scene as they are normally well managed and have a bit of a better budget than most other comic cons in Britain. After you have gone to a few of them it might also be worth checking out London Film and Comic Con which hosts a lot more high profile guests (last year I met Stan Lee at the convention) but that calibre of guest comes with an incredibly high price tag, with tickets ranging from about £30 to as much as £200, if you want more information click here.

Most of my articles are fun opinion pieces or reviews but this one is very close to my heart as I really want you to have all the fun and great times that I have had at conventions, from meeting celebrities that I still can’t believe I’ve met to forging lasting friendships with some of the most interesting people I have ever met. I also encourage you to cosplay, pick your favourite character from anything and jump into their skin for a few days, everyone will treat you like their best friend if you’ve got a mask and a bit of spandex. So keep an eye out for independent con’s, get yourself to an MCM Comic Con and start saving now so you can go to London Film and Comic Con three years from now!

…That was this week’s BearSleuth Opinion Piece!!! Check back on Wednesday for a brand new Comic History 101!!!

 

BearSleuth Spoiler Free Comic Book Bundle Week Thirty Nine

This week we are right in the thick of it dear readers! Civil War II and Rebirth are now in full swing, with a thick stack of tie-ins appearing for both events. It’s around this time of year that the hype trains can start to slow down, as each company reveals their hands and normally at least one of them is found to be bluffing. I would say the biggest bluff has come from DC, who claimed to be rebooting with their rebirth but instead are attempting what can only be described as the most convoluted plan to make everyone happy. It’s at times like these you need your friendly neighbourhood comic book guy to guide the way, cut through the bluffs and recommend you only the finest comics of the week!

All images are screen shots taken from the Marvel and DC comics’ app [Accessed: 10/06/2016]

Action Comics Issue Nine Hundred And Fifty Seven By Dan Jurgens And Patrick Zircher


Going back to the idea of bluffs from DC it seems that they just can’t let any character die. In this book we see the aftermath of a certain characters death (no prizes for guessing which one) and then within a few panels we see two character who are essentially the dead character alive again and a third character pledging to take up the old character’s mantle. Dan Jurgens is on good form here, with some truly interesting ideas and fun dialogue for a lot of characters, but the main plot at work here doesn’t really do it for me yet. As this was the big relaunch of Action Comics I was hoping to be wowed and I’m afraid to say this issue is just not doing it for me. Zircher’s art is fairly mediocre with a few notable panels that will leave most fans of Supes smiling. I would probably recommend this for the core Superman fan base but few past that.

Amazing Spider-Man: Civil War II Issue One By Christos N Gage And Travel Foreman


It’s rare that I am put off a book solely by the cover but I have to say I came close with this issue. I’m glad I wasn’t. Amazing Spider-Man Civil War II Issue One is a pretty awesome meditation on the main issue of the Civil War II debate while also neatly placing Peter Parker in the centre of the discussion. Christos Gage rustles up a fun plot, cherry picking some of the best characters from the Civil War II event to work with. I also want to say that while I struggle with the cover of this book the interior artwork really stands out for me by Travel Foreman. I think if you’re looking for a good Civil War II tie-in then this book is up to the task.

Detective Comics Issue Nine Hundred And Thirty Four By James Tynion IV And Eddy Barrows


I really like the idea behind this book, without spoiling anything more than the front cover, it’s about the heroes of Gotham coming together as a team. For the longest time I’ve pined for a book looking at the entire Bat-Family as super team and I’m glad to see something resembling that vision. James Tynion IV has already proven himself as an industry titan but I would happily site this as some of his best work as he quickly makes the characters motives unique and memorable. Eddy Barrows pulls out some serious writing chops on this issue as well, we visit Gotham in the winter so every panel is filled with masked vigilantes swinging from gothic rooftops through the snow. If you want a book chocked full of Bat-family fun, look no further.

Flash: Rebirth Issue One By Joshua Williamson And Carmine De Giandomenico


Every time DC start mucking about with time streams and general continuity things get confusing. More specifically, things tend to get really confusing for the Flash. Rebirth sees Barry Allen putting together pieces from his pre-52 and new 52 past into some sort of brand new origin. I think this is simply way too much to lay at any writer’s feet and while Joshua Williamson gives it a good shot that final execution just feels lacking for me. I get the feeling that the book was trying to set up a string of questions for the post-Rebirth Flash series but it just left me a little jaded with the whole series. If you want to drop a book week I would say this is one you can stand to lose.

Gods Of War: Civil War II Issue One By Dan Abnett And Emilio Laiso


I loved the All-New All-Different Hercules series and this continuation from Dan Abnett is nothing short of brilliant. Most tie-ins to big event books tend to look at a main event through the eyes of a particular character but this book instead opts to take the major themes of the event and play with them in a completely different story. I can understand why many might consider this to be a bit of a ‘cop-out’ but personally I prefer it as it feels a lot less forced. The plot here is great and I’m pretty sure any reader will be psyched for is series by the final page. The writing by Abnett is fun and thought provoking, making for a wining piece when teamed up with Emilio Laiso’s art, this is one that deserves to be in your collection.

BearSleuth Pick Of The Week: Wacky Raceland Issue One By Ken Pontac And Leonardo Manco


If you ever wanted proof that those wild cards over at DC were a little bit touched in the head you needn’t look any further than this book right here. Combining Wacky Races with the thematic setting of Mad Max for the ultimate post-apocalyptic death race might sound ridiculous on paper but I think the even more insane aspect of this piece it that the team pulled it off. This book works, Ken Pontac has injected enough emotional weight into the proceedings that I challenge any reader not to get hooked from the first few pages. Throughout the piece there is a constant sense of action and big characters pushing up against each other. This is a great book and it really deserves your full attention, especially with the heavily inked art style of Leonardo Manco, this might not be your normal choice but trust me you’ll enjoy this one.

Wonder Woman: Rebirth Issue One By Greg Rucka And Matthew Clark


As with the majority of DC Rebirth titles coming out at the moment, Wonder Woman is another convoluted mess. However, Greg Rucka manages to pull this convoluted mess together and work it into a plot that is truly engaging as we see Wonder Woman search for the truth of her origin. I think many readers will still find this issue difficult to follow but Rucka keeps the piece as simple as possible while using a theme of uncertainty to suggest we might not have to understand everything yet. Matthew Clark and the rest of the art team work hard to make Wonder Woman look the coolest she has ever looked on the page. If you want to jump on board the Wonder Woman series this is a perfect point.

Vision Issue Eight By Tom King And Gabriel Walta


You should all know what I am going to say about this series already. This series is some of the best writing to come out of the mainstream industry in years, I don’t even consider it for my pick of the week anymore because I’m certain it would take it every time. Tom King has exploded onto the scene and I will be surprised if he doesn’t manage to get an Eisner award off the back of this series. It’s smart, well thought out and charming. Every character feels real and there is a warmth to Gabriel Walta’s art style you simply cannot find in any other book. I think King’s secret is that he writes on a very human level, even though these characters are as far from everyday life as it is possible to be they are all very human and that is compelling. If you have any interest in any aspect of the comic book industry, you need this series in your collection.

…That was this week’s BearSleuth Spoiler Free Comic Book Bundle!!! Check back at 6pm this evening for a new Adaptive Panels!!!

Bear Sleuth Spoiler Free Comic Book Bundle Week Thirty Eight

Summers here, the suns out and your humble BearSleuth is stuck inside sifting through a pile of comic books. Marvel have come out of the gate strong this week with Civil War II Issue One only to be completely blindsided by a whole slew of DC Rebirth titles. We got titles from Batman right through to Wolverine this week and if that wasn’t enough Jeff Lemire has thrown another Moon Knight shaped stick of dynamite into the mix. It a great time to be a comic book reader and an even better one to be a comic book reviewer.

All images are screen shots taken from the Marvel and DC Comics app [Accessed: 03/06/2016]

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