We’re back to dive into an overstuffed grab bag of off-topic nonsense with Roz Townsend, and we grapple with the important questions that keep us up at night.
Is Colonel Sanders the closest thing we have to an American Time Lord? What are our favorite fictional restaurants? Are self-published fan zines a lost art? Are skunks a form of Pokémon? Did Freddie Mercury go super saiyan in the ’80s? Are modern video game mechanics inaccessible to people who didn’t grow up with them?
Plus, Casey becomes annoyed at a group of small children not being as entranced by My Neighbor Totoro as he is, and we all betray our socialist leanings.
While Casey has to run upstairs and be a dad, Mike continues his talk with Joe Preti and Tobiah Panshin for a full-throated bitch-sesh about the state of the comic book industry. From Marvel and DC’s refusal to change its accessibility, sales methods and whether its time to give up the ghost of the monthly issue, we wonder if the current superhero output from those two great companies just isn’t for us anymore.
And is DC Comics secretly a doomsday cult trying to provoke Alan Moore into ending the world?
Plus, we talk about cartoon voice actors and try to make heads or tails out of the design of K.I.T.T. from Knight Rider.
We continue our talk with Greg Hatcher and dive into the world of comic books and beyond!
We reminisce about Marvel’s 1970s misfit superhero team, the Defenders, and an absolutely batshit tale from writer Steve Gerber that includes stolen brains, absurd body horror, elves with guns, and the soul of an evil wizard trapped in the body of a baby deer!
Plus, we look at the strange turn that comic book scribe Mark Millar’s work has taken in his new series Huck, which is a radical departure from his regularly shocking, cynical and violent stories.
We talk about fan entitlement and the ups and downs of finite vs. ongoing storytelling.
“Magic’s just when you trick the universe into believing some incredibly outrageous lie.”
Mike and Casey hop into Chas’ cab for a journey to the realm of Dreams, because it’s time to go on a road trip across America. Our traveling companions, librarian Kit DeForge and Joe Preti from the View from the Gutters podcast.
This month we dig into the Vertigo line of mature-readers comics from DC. From its inception with Karen Berger’s editorial work with Alan Moore on Swamp Thing in the 1980s through massive hits like Sandman, Preacher, Fables and 100 Bullets, we dissect some of the most influential, critically acclaimed and popular comic books of the past thirty years.
Is Vertigo dead, even if its spirit for creator innovation and quality live on at other publishers?
In the shadow of our Batman discussion, Mike and Casey continue their discussion with Joe Preti and Pól Rua. We dig into the weapons-grade weirdness of comic book writer Grant Morrison, and why his work probably shouldn’t be your introduction to the medium.
We get into the contrast of revolutionary artistic experimentation vs. conventional competence that doesn’t reinvent the wheel.
We dive into the stick and meta-textual question of comic book continuity, and whether it’s better to hold a Crisis on Infinite Earths-style event to get rid of story elements you don’t want to keep, or whether it’s better to simply ignore them without explanation.
And finally, how exactly did the Ewoks perceive the Battle of Endor at the end of the Return of the Jedi?
Criminals are superstitious and cowardly lot, so Mike and Casey are joined in the Batcave to compare case notes with our friend Pól Rua, and first-time panelist, Joe Preti of the View from the Gutters podcast. Our topic, DC Comics’ Caped Crusader, Batman.
We dig into the character’s ridiculous versatility and unique ability to upend the normal rules for the suspension of disbelief. From the campy do-goodery of Adam West to Frank Miller’s dark avenger of the night, we discuss the wide range of tone and genre that the character has had in his seven decades of publication.
This is the podcast you deserve, but maybe not the one you need right now.
In the first of a pair of Fun Sized episodes this month, we sit down in the studio with Roslyn Townsend to get extra meta-topical. We talk about the phenomenon of “misdirected fandom.” Why do some fans not seem to understand or even deny that characters like Breaking Bad‘s Walter White or Watchmen‘s Rorschach have ever crossed any ethical lines?
Are all interpretations of fiction and art valid? Can a property’s fans’ behavior make it hard to enjoy? Can an artist’s views or behavior overshadow their work?
We also dig into the world of 1970s science fiction where everyone wears a cape, all hair is big, and everything is brown.
“Dog carcass in alley this morning, tire tread on burst stomach. This city is afraid of me. I have seen its true face.”
Mike and Casey are charging our electric cars, voting for Richard Nixon, and getting a booth in the Gunga Diner with Ask an Atheist‘s Sam Mulvey, and Rob Kelly of the Fire and Water Podcast. Our topic, the 1986 mini-series that has been labeled “the greatest comic book of all time,” Alan Moore and Dave Gibbon’s Watchmen.
We dig into the series’ aggressive and intentionally unflattering deconstruction of the superhero genre, the often uncomfortable morality and motivations of its characters, and the controversial and underwhelming 2009 Zack Snyder film adaptation.
*for those interested in donating to a great cause we mention on the podcast, please check out the Hero Intiative.
As Holiday scheduling conflicts made a full panel episode of the show impossible this month, Mike and Casey are back with what they’re calling a “Fun Size” episode. It’s an unstructured, free form discussion of stuff in pop culture not quite big enough for a full panel episode!
Join us as we dig into the new under-the-radar Keanu Reeves revenge film, John Wick. We explore the idea that perhaps it’s not a great thing to spend a year dissecting every scrap of news and trailer before seeing a movie. Let alone have years of film releases mapped out for us. And finally, we compare how our current lack of enthusiasm for the movie theater experience compares to the present state of the mediums of television and comic books.
We won’t be doing these episodes regularly, but please let us know what you think of Fun Size episodes! Thanks for listening and have a Happy Holiday!