In the new DC Comics issue of THE JOKER: THE MAN WHO STOPPED LAUGHING issue #4, writer Matthew Rosenberg writes The Joker as being PREGNANT. In this bizarre back-up story, DC Comics writer Matthew Rosenbeg and artist Franco Francavilla conjure up a truly strange comic book story involving ZATANNA and The JOKER. It was released on January 3rd 2023 priced $5.99.
This 8-page back-up story has gone viral on social media. I had to check it out for myself and see if it was much ado about nothing or another nail in the coffin of DC Comics. Is writer Matthew Rosenberg secretly trolling the fans or is it all just a harmless joke?
I think it’s a truly strange story which wastes the brilliant talent of artist Franco Francavilla. It’s also a waste of the character Zatanna who deserves better than being dropped into this surreal story. How does this get by the DC Comics Editors? Is there anybody even checking these stories anymore? What do you think?
First off, after Jorge Jimenez’s brilliant art during the Failsafe story arc, this change in artist and art style is quite jarring. I can’t tell if it’s the pencils by Hawthorne or Bendetto’s inking, but I’m not a big fan of the overall look of the main story. There are some nice panels though, which offer some interesting perspectives.
We open with Batman lying bruised and bloody on a cobbled street. His costume’s torn and half his face is exposed. A couple steal his utility belt and there’s a reference to the drug VENOM.
Batman regains consciousness and remembers Failsafe blasting him with some kind of energy weapon. Is he in Crime Alley? Maybe not the Crime Alley he remembers.
I devoted a lot more of my free time to growing my YouTube Channel in 2022, which led to more comic books read but less “proper” books completed. Despite this change in hobby priorities, I still published 48 posts in 2022. Of those posts, only 14 were book reviews, 9 were comic book reviews, and 8 were Movie or TV reviews. In total, 31 reviews compared to 34 the year before.
After a quick check on the Wakizashi’s Teahouse YouTube Channel, I see that I made 104 comic book review videos in 2022. Imagine if I’d also posted short written reviews of those comics on WordPress. Definitely something to consider for this year.
In 2022, the Blog got 13,014 views, up 27% on last year. “Visitors” were up 28% compared to 2021. But “Likes” and “Comments” were both down. Most of my traffic came from the United States, followed by the U.K., Australia, Canada, and Germany.
This is a quick post to share a couple of very short videos of my family’s Japanese New Year. The first video shows “Daifuku” or “Anko Mochi” being made. The second video is a brief clip of “Sukiyaki” being cooked by my father in-law. It’s been a bit hectic here with all the preparations, cleaning, cooking, etc. I will be writing a Year’s Retrospective post in the coming days. Let me wish you all a very HAPPY NEW YEAR 2023. Thank you for all your support this year. よいお年を！(Yoi o toshi o!)
Thanks so much for reading! You really are Amazing!
Batman and Spawn in a crossover event? What year is this? Did we slip back in time to the nineties?
There has been a lot of hype building up to the release of this comic book. Released on Tuesday December 13th, the 48-page Batman / Spawn #1 comic will set you back $6.99. It’s published by DC Comics (Batman), not Image Comics (Spawn). I’m sure Image would’ve put it out at a cheaper price. (They have been releasing their Spawn comics for $2.99, a dollar or more cheaper than the other publishers.) Todd McFarlane writing Batman & Spawn, Greg Capullo drawing the book and McFarlane inking Capullo’s pencils. As you can imagine, a lot of comic book fans have been very excited about this release. The question is, is it any good?
My simple answer is buy it for the art. The story is okay but the art by Greg Capullo is stunning. There are some incredible double page spreads in the comic. I’ve since heard in an interview with the two creators that Todd asked Greg what he wanted to draw. Then he wrote the story around that. So it’s not like he had this great idea for a story he really wanted to tell. And it shows. The story is convoluted and requires re-reading to take everything in. It’s also a bit daft with McFarlane trying to tie-in the deaths of Batman’s parents and Spawn’s wife.
I went to my first comic convention in Tokyo last weekend where I was working for an artist friend called The Jinja Ninja. It was a very busy Saturday and Sunday and my friend had a successful convention. He received an impressive number of commissions and was delighted with the whole experience. He also worked his ass off. I assissted as best as I could and tried to take some photos and videos of the Con. Unfortunately I didn’t take enough.I wish I’d taken more.
Here is a short video I took at the Comic Con. You will get a brief glimpse at some of the very impressive cosplay, as well as a few of the artists including Peach Momoko, Geof Darrow, Ed Pikor, Alex Sinclair, and The Jinja Ninja. I hope you enjoy it.
I took the video on my Sony Xperia smartphone so the quality isn’t the best.
I am a big fan of William Gibson’s 2014 novel that this series is based on. (Here’s my REVIEW of The Peripheral from 2015.) Amazon Studio’s TV adaptation pretty much came out of nowehere for me. I found a trailer almost by accident on YouTube just a few weeks before the first two episodes dropped. It is being executive-produced by Westworld creators Jonathan Nolan & Lisa Joy and has been in development since April 2018. Chloë Grace Moretz plays main character Flynne Fisher.
There will be eight episodes in this first season, four of which have already dropped at the time of writing. The series significantly expands Gibson’s book by adding new characters and plot threads. Here is a brief synopsis:
“Flynne Fisher is a brilliant gamer who works a dead-end job to support her brother and ailing mother. When her brother enlists her help in an advanced game, Flynne sees something she shouldn’t, bringing danger to the family’s doorstep.” – imdb
Holy Macaroni, Batman! What have they done to Tim Drake? I’m amazed this got past the editor(s). Nice cover art but it has nothing to do with the story…
I’m old and remember Dick Grayson as Robin the Boy Wonder when I started reading Batmancomics. Then Dick broke away and became Nightwing and Jason Todd arrived as a new mouthier Robin. His popularity was pretty mixed to begin with, but I kind of liked him from the start. He wasn’t afraid to question Batman, even smart mouth him at times. This eventually led to the unforgettable Death in the Family story arc where readers were encouraged to phone in to decide if Jason Todd lived or died at the climax of that story.
I missed the debut of Tim Drake as Robin because I’d moved on to reading more “adult” comics that became DC’s excellent VERTIGO line of books. Titles like Hellblazer, Sandman, Shade the Changing Man, Animal Man, Doom Patrol and The Invisibles. I’d heard there was a new Robin and he had his own series being written by Chuck Dixon. That solo series started in 1993 but Dixon had penned three mini-series before it: Robin: Reborn; Robin II: The Joker’s Wild!; and Robin III: Cry of the Huntress. After what DC Comics has just done to Tim Drake Robin, I’m really tempted to pick up each of those mini-series and read them. I am one hundred percent sure they will be far more entertaining than this comic.
It has been just over a year since Todd McFarlane releasedSpawn’s Universe #1which heralded the addition of three new monthly Spawn titles to the original Spawn comic. We now have Spawn, King Spawn, Gunslinger Spawn and The Scorched. McFarlane is writing Gunslinger Spawn and drawing occasional covers for some of the comics. Spawn is currently being written by Irish writer Rory McConnville who has been writing for the British weekly comic 2000 AD. American writer Sean Lewis is writing the remaining two titles, King Spawn and The Scorched.
It’s difficult to get hold of accurate sales figures for comics these days. But from what I’ve read online or heard in interviews, all four Spawn titles are regularly in the monthly top sellers. It appears that McFarlane’s efforts have really paid off with not only the new titles selling well but also the flagship Spawn comic receiving a substantial lift in sales. Before issue #300 of Spawn was released in September 2019, the comic was shifting around just 15,000 issues a month. Now it’s said to be closer to 45,000, a huge increase which is matched by each of the new Spawn titles.
I woke up to this sunrise. Typhoon 11 is approaching. That’s right, Japan doesn’t give typhoons impressive names, only a number. Boring! It’s due to hit around noon. I think we will be lucky because we are only catching the edges of it. Korea is getting the brunt of it.