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Wait, What? Ep. 55.2: Press 1 for Yes, 2 for No

Jeff Lester


And we’re back with big finale of the podcast we recorded twice and edited twice (and, in a fine bit of “oh, ha-ha-ha, where’s my magical suicide gun?”, I had to write this entry twice because the first one got wiped out, ha-ha-ha, no really, where is it?). Included in this installment’s topics are The Trial of the Flash Showcase, Flashpoint #5, Thor: The Motion Picture, Flashpoint #5, the first volume of Bakuman, Fighting American and the Newsboy Legion, Flashpoint #5, Kid Eternity, the marketing of Schism, and the comic event that is not Fear Itself #5.

This embarrassment of riches (or, alternately, embarrassment, depending on how you feel about these things) is available to you on iTunes and also right here in this very fine blog entry that will make me lose my mind if it crashes out again before I can schedule it:

Wait, What? Ep. 55.2: Press 1 for Yes 2 for No

As always, we hope you enjoy, and feel free to drop us a note with pictures of naked waffles cavorting out in the sunshine, ’60s nudie magazine style, at waitwhatpodcast@gmail.com.  This blog’s spam filters are easily bewildered as it is.

We continue to appreciate your fine patronage!

12 Responses to “ Wait, What? Ep. 55.2: Press 1 for Yes, 2 for No ”

  1. Quality doesn’t always win out in the long run. Jeph Loeb’s old stuff like Long Halloween and Superman for all Seasons is Youngblood quality work disguised as Batman Year One quality work and it’s gained longevity and has been considered an enduring classic. So you never know.

  2. It’s strange, but all the reasons why you say Schism sucks actually make it sound good to me. When I was under the impression that it was going to be the X-Men’s Civil War with Wolverine punching Cyclops, I had no interest. Been there, done that, like yet another Superman vs. Batman fighting story. On the other hand, the nuanced take you complain about sounds much more intriguing. I may buy it now.

  3. Another entertaining episode guys. Thanks so much for re-recording. it is much appreciated.

    I have to say, I really appreciate how in-depth you two will go in service of your opinions. It’s far better than an, “I liked it,” or “I didn’t,” that is found in most other podcasts. That said, I was curious about Flashpoint 5 and JL 1 – having been forced into a comics-buying sabbatical due to financial reasons – and was considering picking them up. But I respect your opinions (and also learned what occurred from the podcast) and will be happy to put that money elsewhere – like the electric bill, or maybe Waid’s Daredevil, heh.

    I’m disappointed to hear that this first issue of Justice League was so decompressed. One of the initial press releases from DC stated they were going to allow the creators to create the stories in the manner they thought best – no more of this writing for the trade. I know it’s in vogue today, and it is how Johns has learned to write comics, which would be a difficult habit to break, but if you’re going to stamp a price of $3.99 on the cover and only offer up 24 pages of story – you aren’t offering any value for the money put down, in my opinion.

    One of the more acclaimed runs of recent runs in recent history is Morrison’s & Quitely’s All-Star Superman, and that was far from decompressed. Other than that Bizarro 2-parter, each issue offered a complete reading experience, and I think that was one of the many things it had to offer (at least for me).

    But, even with the single issue stories, Morrison was able to build toward a larger “uber-arc” making the experience of reading the trade, or reading the issues in one or two sittings, a very different one. It’s similar to what Dave Lapham did with his Stray Bullets comic – single-issue stories that built to longer arcs. Why can’t we have more of that? Are the big companies afraid that having single-issue stories would make it easy for readers jump off? I’d expect that having multi-issue arcs where little to nothing happens in any given chapter would quickly send people running. But, then again, I’m an “old” guy too.

    I’ve been re-reading my issues of the “Trial of the Flash,” and I think Graeme is right in his assessment. There are certainly some crazy things going on in this book, and things that we might deride current creators for trying to do, but Cary Bates gets away with it because it is so entertaining, and because there seems to be no malice toward the character of the Flash, despite the wringer Bates puts Barry, Fiona, et al. through.

    I’ve also been surprised at how much the exposition doesn’t grate on me. I always had a hard time with Claremont’s writing in X-Men – but I wasn’t an X-fan either – but similar writing in these issues I’m reading is, again, fun. The way Reverse-Flash is cackling (I swear I can hear him cackling) as he tells Barry his plan and how he escaped just brings a smile to my face. He’s evil, but he’s goofy too. I’m really glad you guys mentioned the showcase volume so I could dive into my longboxes and pull these out. Grodd just manifested himself – so I’m looking forward to seeing what he does next (Graeme’s remark a couple episodes back has my interest piqued).

    Reading this storyline again is also clarifying some other things for me, regarding contemporary comic storytelling. I’ve been reading Mark Millar’s “Enemy of the State” in order to write about my introduction to his work at my blog (only ever read snippets of an issue or bits of a series from him before). And it seems to me that the way in which Marvel and DC and their creators look at death today, especially as compared to how it is being handled in “Trial,” and the way they treat death in comics has cheapened it to such an extent that it holds no weight at all. Death should provide the most intense emotional reaction in a reader, but now it’s looked at with derision and cynicism and has become a gimmick as pathetic as foil-enhanced, die-cut, scratch-n-sniff covers.

    In “Enemy of the State,” Wolverine killing pell-mell under the influence of Hydra is just shrugged off by everyone – because he’s brainwashed. While Flash’s killing of Reverse-Flash, as Zoom was about to kill an innocent woman, has serious ramifications for the Flash and everyone around him. And I imagine it was a pretty serious thing for readers at the time, as well. You couldn’t write a story like that today and have it provide as emotional an impact as I am sure it did in the early eighties. Plus, it would only be six issues long.

    Finally, looking forward to the DK2 discussion (though I got the preview on Twitter). I have to take Jeff’s side on this. I was one of those who did hate it when it was first published (I didn’t even bother picking up the final issue, I was so put off by it), but in re-reading it last year, I found it incredibly enjoyable. It moved along at a good pace, had a lot of cynical humor that I enjoyed, and I really appreciated how far away from the original Dark Knight it was. It’s not perfect, and I have a big problem with the Dick Grayson reveal, but I would definitely recommend it to people. I do agree with Graeme in that I think it is an “old man screaming at the young’uns” type of book, but I think that’s intentional, and I think it works.

    But what do I know?


  4. Hey Jeff, this one doesn’t appear to be on iTunes yet? Or is it just my system?

  5. @VoodooBen: Think it might just be you, Ben? I can see it on iTunes from my iPhone, and I know other people who’ve had both podcasts since Monday night. It’s the one dated September 5th in the list…

    Hope it pops up for you if it’s not there!

  6. Found it. My iTunes has been glitchy as hell lately. Thanks, and sorry to trouble you!

  7. I respectfully disagree with Jeff on X-Men Schism. I have been staying away from the X books for several years now. I picked up Schism on the strength of the art alone. I like that there are different high quality artists on each book. The story isn’t spectacular by any means, but it is serviceable.

    As for a punch up, having seen previews of issue 5,(drawn by Adam Kubert), it looks like an intense battle is finally going to take place between Cyclops and Wolverine.

    The problem for Marvel is I have no intention of buying 8 X-Men books a month trying to follow the division of the X-Men into two teams (Team Cyke vs. Team Wolvie). So in that sense, for me at least, Schism is kinda pointless.

  8. I get the completely opposite feeling from Aaron’s work. He’s very much trying to hit a Millar vibe – hell, I think he’s trying to out-Millar Millar, by taking the Millaresque into the realm of outright camp. Where Millar’s over-the-top set pieces always make me feel like he’s sitting across from me, going “wasn’t that AWESOME? huh? tell me that was AWESOME”, Aaron’s over-the-over-the-top shit makes me feel like he’s constantly winking at me and nudging me in the ribs to let me know he’s in on the joke. Millar gives you a Venom-infected T-rex, Aaron gives you sociopathic twelve-year-old billionaire serial killers shooting Magneto with guns that fire neutron stars. I am not sure where Jeff got “nuance” out of that.

  9. Jeff: totally a Boom Tube!

  10. Plus the idea of the Asgardians as Space Gods (ie aliens w/ godlike powers and not really deities), which was always implicit in Kirby’s work, but diluted by later Thor writers, here made somewhat explicit in the movie.

  11. This was your most entertaining episode yet… Great stuff!

  12. You guys totally Crashed the Flashpoint.

    Fo’ shizzle, Yo!!

    And Jeff: given your Kid Eternity love, might I recommend BATMAN: BRAVE AND THE BOLD # 6


    After teaming up with Hourman to defeat the Calculator, Batman and Kid Eternity team up to fight General Immortus (assisted by the western Royal Flush Gang). G.I. Robot, Shining Knight, Vigilante, and the Viking Prince make appearances as Eternity’s called heroes.

    How’s that for 22 pages of WEAPONS GRADE AWESOME!

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