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Wait, What? Ep. 137: Zombook Club!

Jeff Lester

Zombo book Club photo Zombo-You-Smell-of-Crime-1-52834_zps1afe3424.jpg
This and Battling Boy are the subjects of today’s book club. Go pick up copies and argue along!

Greetings from the Cosmic Habitrail! (That is how Flash now gets from one dimension to the next, right?) Due to an overabundance of running around and an underabundance of organizational skills, I have very, very brief show notes for Episode 137, our Book Club edition. but! I do also have a two hour long podcast for you, so… <nudge, nudge>. Eh? Eh?

After the jump…both of those things!

00:00-05:28:  Greetings! We start off with a short, but happy bit of news about Erotic Vampire Bank Heist.  At the time of recording, EVBH was #13 in the Heist category in the Kindle store (as of the time of these notes, it’s #23).  (If you like pulp adventure, crazed ’70s adventure, and a generous dollop of explicit sex but have not picked up a copy, check it out! Yes, those are indeed two hyperlinks to the exact same page.  I am shameless like that.)
05:28-36:48:  Graeme has had a busy week, improved by Marvel’s solicitation text of Miracleman that, instead of using Alan Moore’s name, uses the impressive nom de plume, “THE ORIGINAL WRITER.”  Unsurprisingly, this leads us to discuss the pro & cons of Marvel’s approach in reprinting the material.  Other topics included: Neil Gaiman; inappropriate spouses; the brilliance that is Hayley Campbell; beard conditioner; Joel Golby; anal bleaching; Don DeLillo; nostalgia; dick pails; and (somehow) more.
36:48-41:35:  Want more comic talk with less mention of dick pails?  Graeme has read the second volume of the Secret Society of Super-Villains, in a follow-up to the episode where I read the first and he is more than happy to report on his findings.
41:35-44:54: In a bit of compare and contrast, Graeme has also read Justice League of America #8, a Forever Evil tie-in issue by Matt Kindt and Doug Mahnke.
44:54-52:07: Also on Graeme’s reading table: Forever Evil: Trinity of Sin: Pandora (“Yes, now it was has two subtitle,s” as Graeme puts it) by Ray Fawkes and Francis Portela, and Rogues Rebellion by Brian Buccellato and Patrick Zircher.  The latter leads us to talk a bit about (of course) The Rogues, The Flash, William Messner-Loeb’s run on The Flash, inexpensive Comixology reprints, Kamandi, and more.
52:07-1:04:12: From Kirby, we move on to the first subject of this episode’s installment of Wait, What? The Book Club:  Battling Boy by Paul Pope.  It’s Paul Pope doing Jack Kirby as a Miyazaki movie! (With a lot of Ditko and Fleischer Brothers’ Superman cartoons thrown in there.)  What could be wrong with that? Help Graeme try and solve “The Mystery of The Phantom Grouser” and see!
1:04:12-1:21:32: Al Ewing wrote Avengers Assemble #20, a done-in-one Infinity tie-in issue, which Graeme wanted to talk about, and Jeff asks about Al’s Mighty Avengers. Although this is a perfect segue to talk about the next subject for WWBC, Jeff throws in .02 about the latest issue of Batman &…. by Pete Tomasi and Patrick Gleason.  (It’s issue #23, the one with Two-Face.)  Jeff also wanted to talk about Detonator X, the pre-Pacific Rim Pacific Rim by Ian Edginton and Steve Yeowell, that’s collected as the graphic novel pack-in for issue #341 of Judge Dredd Megazine.  There’s a bit of discussion about Beyond Zero, the pack-in from Meg #340, as well.
1:21:32-1:53:37: But finally we do get around to the second topic of the Wait, What? The Book Club:  Zombo:  You Smell of Crime…And I”m The Deodorant, by Al Ewing and and Henry Flint. It’s a little tough to just jot out a quick list of stuff we throw into the mix while talking about this because so much is in this book. But needless to say, The Beatles, Robocop, Steve Gerber, the Rutles, Nick Fury, Frank Miller and Jack Kirby, 2000 A.D. and Donald Trump, and much more are mentioned, but the brilliance of this book is actually really, really hard to accurately sum up or oversell.  It’s really brilliant stuff and you should pick it up, whether you listen to us blather about it or not.
1:53:37-end:  Closing comments!  We talk about the possibility of “best of” lists, a bit more about Secret Society of Super-Villains, classic DC’s weird obsession bylaws, Justice Legion, our future podcasting schedule and more!

The podcast is up on iTunes and it is also below.  Please check out Brian’s shipping list, John Kane’s fine round-up of comics he’s read, and other lovely bits and pieces below  (Brian’s piece on understanding how to order books in the direct market over at Comic Book Resources is also great). We wouldn’t want to rob you of the experience.

Next week: Next week!  We’ll see you then!

Wait, What? Ep. 137: Zombook Club!

14 Responses to “ Wait, What? Ep. 137: Zombook Club! ”

  1. Ahhhh, Tuesday mornings are great. Love plugging in to you two bantering on about comics and such at work. Thank you.

    I’m only at the start of the podcast right now but wanted to chime in with regards to the Miracleman “announcement” from Marvel. Not much to add, except that I totally agree with Graeme – the recoloring and relettering has almost completely turned me off to picking these up. Of course, I have the luxury of the original Eclipse trades being handy, so I’ve already read these stories and can re-read them at my leisure. But this “remastering” just has me cringing. The only thing they might be able to do to get me to snag any of these would be to have someone competent totally redraw the Chuck Beckum stories.

    That said, I am glad to finally be able to read the continuation of the Gaiman/Buckingham run. I liked where these two were going with the story when it stopped. And having recently met Mr. Buckingham in Baltimore, where I got him to sign my copies of issues 17 & 19 of Miracleman, and chatted quickly with him, I am even more onboard for that continuation now.

    chris

  2. Looks like a bullet point day for me:

    – not surprised to hear that Matt Kindt wrote a good Justice League book. I can’t say I’ve read any of his “mainstream” work, but everything I have read by Kindt (much of his Topshelf work, 3Story, and currently Mind MGMT, among other stuff) has been top-notch. I can’t pinpoint it, but Kindt manages to engage me as a reader in a way that few others in comics can.

    chris

  3. Whil I seem to have appointed myself Marvel’s water carrier in these comment sections, the comments on Miracleman were spot on and I agree 100%.

  4. Guys, how can you not celebrate the biggest news of the Miracleman reprints: CHUCK AUSTEN IS COMING BACK TO MARVEL (SORT OF)!!!!

  5. Jeff’s reading of Battling Boy is 100% on target.

    The book is beautifully drawn but its narrative structure and momentum is all off. Like Jeff more or less said, the book has about as much plot as a single BD volume and basically should’ve just been that. The format here feels bloated. The physical size has shrunk and the quite-strong-at-core narrative has been extensively padded out. Scenes take 5-8 pages that should take 2-4. Drawings that should be imposing and momentous feel cramped. The color also rarely varies in contrast and doesn’t have much emotive or mood lighting, giving most of the book a relatively similar look and feel.

    It feels like a book made to fit a specific format and I don’t think Pope’s art style or narrative inclinations fit that format particularly well.

  6. You guys talking about Zombo finally got me to pull the trigger. I placed an order on the first two volumes as soon as I got home from work. I thank you, my bank account hates you.

  7. @TS Moreau
    Reading the TCJ review kind of hits all the same points yourself and Jeff make.

    I was “with” everything in pacing except for the scenes with the mayor and his cronies angling to exploit Battling Boy. Maybe it just felt too leaden or strident but one page into it I was definitely feeling the bored and overly simplistic Boss Tweed / Tammany Hall vibe.

    The only thing that really bugged me was the unexplained nature of the kidnapping of children. If we had seen or a gotten a sense of what was going on in that plot I feel a cliffhanger placed on that peg would have been just the right note to strike at the close of the first volume. Then again, maybe I’ve been “Broken Bad” in my expectations that things introduced are resolved tightly.

    As it is we’re left to fear for Battling Boy as opposed to those largely helpless innocents he has been tasked with protecting. I’m not worried about the developing demi-god, you know?

    As a last request I implore anyone with photoshop talents to imagine a world wherein Jazzy Jeff Lester mistakenly purchased a bottle of anal bleach to condition his beard.

    Saaaanta Claus is coming to tooooown….

  8. Man, the beard wash story is a perfect example of why I listen to this podcast. Wait, What: come for the comics, stay for the wall of dildos.

    I really want to support Erotic Vampire Bank Heist, but I don’t have a Kindle. Should I buy a copy for my quiet, proper, probably religious but Kindle-owning co-worker?

  9. @moose n squirrel: I would read the preview before deciding on that. It’s saucy.

  10. Ordered the first two volumes of Zombo and the first “omnibus” of Rogue Trooper. I’m enjoying Dredd so much and everything else Ewing has done both thanks to your recommendations, so I thought I’d give these a read as well.

  11. I would like to hear our lovely hosts discuss Brubaker statement here today, re: the new Cap movie and “concern tolling.” https://twitter.com/brubaker/status/393422821931491330

  12. I love the Tomasi/Gleason Batman and Robin. It might be my favorite Batman book of the new 52. Gleason’s art is killer– it’s very gothic but those clean shading lines and facial profiles make it sort of art deco at the same time. I do find that his faces get kind of wonky when they are at a half angle though.

    I read all of the Damian issues in trade thanks to your recommendation and have been in and out since he fell on the sword. I was so confused by the stages of grief. They didn’t seem like the stages of grief to me either, but who am I to say? Everyone grieves differently! Batman’s stages 1-5 are apparently traumatizing everyone around him. Though it’s been decent, the title clearly needs a new Robin (or teen wonder interest). I like the new Carrie Kelly, so help me, I hope that it goes somewhere.

  13. I think that tweet proves ED Brubaker isn’t as good a person as John Kane is, obviously.

  14. So I just picked up a copy of Invincible Haggard West. I haven’t seen Battling Boy yet, but there was a fair amount of unused space in HW at the tops and bottoms of pages. Even though HW is standard size, the layouts suggest it wasn’t intended to be. I didn’t have scale and size issues with the panels in HW, but maybe Pope was too ambitious in BB?

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