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Wait, What? Ep. 61.1: Same As It Ever Was….

Jeff Lester

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(And look where my hand was.)

Hey, we are back! After a pleasant two week respite, Graeme McMillan and I have returned with the first installment of Wait, What? Episode 61. And as you can see, we have a nifty new piece of fanart to bring along with us, courtesy of the awesomely talented Garrett Berner (who some of us also know on Twitter as The Mighty Gar).

Well, that’s all fine and good, you say, but what about the podcast?  And I am happy to report it should already be up on iTunes and making its way back into your heart, like it had never left, just like some kind of ringworm or intestinal parasite.  And in it, we answer your questions from Twitter, email, and the website, with topics like Daredevil #5, Legion Lost #2, Luther and Justified, Flash #2, Justice League Dark #2, Casanova: Avarita #2, Fear Itself #7, Occupy Oakland, and Marvel’s business practices. (The latter of which continues into Part 2 but I had to break up the conversation somewhere…)

If this sounds like the sort of thing that interests you, by all means jump in and  start listening right here if you fancy:

Wait, What? Ep. 61.1: Same As It Ever Was

Part 2 is right around the corner, and it has us getting to (a few) of the many questions posed to us on Graeme’s recent post, as well as the announcement of the winners of our latest contest.  We hope you come back for it!

And, as always, thanks for listening!

22 Responses to “ Wait, What? Ep. 61.1: Same As It Ever Was…. ”

  1. Nice podcast gentlemen. A couple weeks off did you good. Except you can let Graeme out of the echo chamber now… now… now..

  2. I just read the first half of the Star Wars Marvel run for the first time very recently. Jeff Lester is right about Valence being the inspiration for Liefeld’s Cable. Liefeld has admitted in past interviews to being a huge Star Wars fan, including the Marvel comics. So it’s very likely he was exposed to Valence the Hunter.

    I agree with Graeme that the early Star Wars comics were terrible, but I do think they are worth reading just to keep the narrative flow going into Archie Goodwin’s run, as some of the early Thomas elements are continued into Goodwin’s run. I remember Michilinie’s stuff being terrible too, but to be fair I think everything Michilinie writes is terrible.

  3. I think no one asked about Fear Itself because it was such a given that you would talk about it. I couldn’t imagine you not talking about it. That’s why I didn’t ask about it at least. It would be like asking Grant Morrison to write metacommentary. it’s already a given in his work, so why not ask for something he doesn’t normally do.

  4. Wowowowowowowow, I do believe that’s the finest logo I’ve ever set eyes upon. Well done.

  5. This immediately popped into my head once you guys started discussing Marvel’s business practices – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f37I7HNfK0k&list=WL49E0A491AA24421D&index=1&feature=plpp_video

    Personally, I can’t imagine things getting better for the Marvel staffers since either cost cutting works and Marvel does more or the cost cutting doesn’t work and Marvel does more anyway to try and make more money. Plus, it seems unlikely that if Disney does step that they wouldn’t just close the publishing division down instead of trying to fix things. Or maybe I’m just too cynical.

  6. I’ve also been recently reading the Marvel Star Wars run in Dark Horse Omnibus format, oddly enough. I actually hadn’t read much of it as a kit. I think it’s a lot funner than Jeff/Graeme suggested today (though I think they were just talking about other things, it seems like they both agree they’re pretty fun. Right lads?). I agree that the first 12 or so issues of the run are pretty lousy, although the movie adaptation has what ended up being deleted scenes from the movie in it, which was pretty fun to see.

    But once it’s Goodwin and Infantino, things really get started. There are long story-arcs with plot twists and turns, the Star Wars universe is opened up in much more interesting/fun and yet logical directions than ended up happening in the prequels (in which said universe seemed to shrink), Infantino’s art and design is pretty creative, and he’s often inked by Terry Austin. I think every comic should be inked by Terry Austin.

    It sounds like damning with faint praise, but these comics are just plain amazingly… competent: solid sensible plots, solid characterization and dialog, solid art, all working together to form coherent and fun Space Adventure Stories. There’s nothing ground-breaking here, it’s rather average stuff for its day, so it’s a great illustration of what quality Marvel could produce on a day-to-day basis back in The Good Old Days.

    Must. stop. sounding like. Grumpy. Old. Man.

    So yeah, how ’bout that Fear Itself, eh?

  7. Oh, and Graeme – read Daredevil already you doofus!

  8. The idea that refusing to put money into a glut somehow “penalizes” the creators (to the extent I understood what he meant which it’s entirely possible I didn’t, since I can’t sleep)– I mean, that’s just not my memory of the last glut. My memory of the last glut is creators got penalized by virtue of the existence of the glut itself because distinct work was drowned out by the glut, and any attempt by them to tell stories and connect with readers was drowned out by that endless press of “exciting new status quos” (especially as “Brand new creative team” becomes a marketing hook for a changed status quo, and creative team stability became nil).

    The mainstream success stories of the early 00’s only happened when that glut stopped for that temporary moment there, due to enough people walking and rejecting what was going on– or started with things like the Ultimates line which were separated out from the glutted areas. I don’t think that’s at all coincidental.

    To the extent that I … agree that should be a concern. Which … I’m not sure..? Creative people have put their names on crossovers, advertisements masquerading as stories, glutted franchise multi-spinoffs, death-bagged holofoil-covered nonsense– however much blame for that can be laid at some nebulous rich scapegoat’s feet for that… That’s still their names on those books. And granted, “mouths to feed” trumps “having your name mean something” or “protecting the reader’s trust in you”, any day of the week. But … those are reasons to feel sympathy, or maybe more accurately pity. I don’t know that pitying someone is necessarily the same thing as rooting for them, I guess is what I’m trying to get at.

    And… this has been me babbling since I can’t sleep. Thanks for the podcast.

  9. Oh, and I also like the Flash. It’s all pretty.

  10. Graeme, if you paid me a dollar for every time you completely interrupted Jeff, all comics could get hiked to $6.99 without impacting my finances.

    And these aren’t just slight “we accidentally started talking at the same time” blips — it’s like you beat him down with words until he finally gives up and stops talking as you finish. Are you incapable of having a polite conversation?

    I’ve listened to every one of your podcasts, but they’re becoming increasingly hard to sit through without getting really pissed off for Jeff’s sake.

    Or is Jeff just editing the podcasts this way to gain reader sympathy?

  11. Sorry — “listener” sympathy.

  12. Flash is really great from a ‘craft’ perspective. Along with Jeff and Graeme, I oohed and ahhed at the way Barry ‘thinking faster’ was portrayed visually. The artist has had several sequences in both issues so far that were visually innovative and breathtaking. From an analytical perspective, it’s a great book.

    But I can’t seem to connect emotionally with it very much. I respect it more than love it. And I think that comes down to the story (the ‘A-story’ as I think Graeme referred to it) just not being very compelling. Here’s hoping that the next arc joins the great art with a story we can emotionally connect with.

  13. And these aren’t just slight “we accidentally started talking at the same time” blips — it’s like you beat him down with words until he finally gives up and stops talking as you finish. Are you incapable of having a polite conversation?

    I was getting irked by the exact same thing in this conversation. Jeff would be a few sentences into his point and it would sound interesting to me, and Graeme would just steamroll over his words, and a few times it seemed as a result Jeff never got to return to his original point. Very annoying.

  14. I haven’t read the Flash yet, but hasn’t it always been implied from the beginning that Barry Allen had the ability to think at superspeed? From the first time he used his power, it was shown that the world moves to a standstill from his viewpoint and effectively becomes “frozen,” yet he thinks at his usual processing speed. Think of his origin story where the woman spills food toward him and he’s thinking at what feels like normal speed to him. He has to think fast in order to navigate while running at near light-speeds. As far as I know he’s always thought between milliseconds.

    Unless this is a different twist on thinking quickly?

  15. Not to keep baggin’ on Graeme or anything, but did he really say that the Justice League Dark #2 art looked good? Was that what I heard?

    Because those are traced Poser models, not proper drawings. That’s been obvious since the promo art and it leaves the book just barely a cut above Greg Land as far as art quality goes. Plus the coloring is muddy faux-real and the layouts are… okay, the layouts aren’t bad. Too much medium shot though.

    And I just want to add to chorus saying that everyone should be reading Daredevil, which is a book with proper drawings, atmospheric coloring and best-on-stands layouts. Go. Buy.

  16. Oops, forgot a “the” in there at the end! Curses!

  17. I find the whole situation deeply regrettable but I would just like to thank Mr. Jeff Lester for his humane and perceptive analysis of the situation at Marvel. Mr Graeme McMillan was good as well but as I didn’t agree with him he gets less handclaps because that’s how it works. Unions? Useful things, people.

  18. One day in the future, Jeff and McMillions will read Spider-Island, and will be very angry at their past selves for reading Fear Itself and Schism, but not Spider-Island.
    It wasn’t the greatest thing ever, but it was fun. A bizarrely MJ heavy ending, the sort of thing that makes you think Slott wants them back together. It recall went against the BND stance that Peter with other girls is more interesting.
    I think Slott’s run has been vastly underrated by this podcast, but I think even the boys would agree this was the years best crossover.
    (although ASM, Venom and some of one off specials are all you need to read to follow it.)

    Other than that, it’s good to have the podcast back!

  19. It recall went against the BND stance that Peter with other girls is more interesting.

    I thought the BND stance was more that Pete unmarried was more interesting. The powers that be felt that marriage in general was the problem, not MJ specifically. That was my interpretation based on interviews at least.

  20. SexyDuck played Jane Eyre in a BBC mini-series of Jane Eyre. It was hilarious, firstly because they called her ‘little’ all the time, and she’s only a couple inches shorter than Rochester, and secondly because I spent the entire time frightened that she would murder whoever was mean to her. She should always play serial killers.

  21. T., their entire message was that single Peter was more interesting. That must mean ‘a Peter who can date around’, unless they think having him sitting on the couch eating pizza, and masturbating himself to sleep is more interesting.
    So, a few years after having the devil undo their marriage, to then have a big crossover where Peter ends up spending more time with MJ, rather than saving the girl they have been setting up as his new girlfriend, seems rather odd.
    Also, that’s not my interpretation – the crossover ends with Peter looking over the new day with MJ, who has admitted to herself she loves him after learning the feeling of responsibility that came with his powers by having them himself (She got Spidey powers like everyone else, but hers manifested later when everyone was getting in trouble, as precious Spider-Fluids had built up a resistance in her. So she had to use her powers to rescue people a lot).
    The epilogue issue has the newer love interest leave him after realizing he is Spider-Man. (When she finally appears, after being ditched a few issues ago, Peter takes half the issue to remember her, because he forgot whilst with MJ. Again, not my interpretation – these dramas are on the surface).
    Seriously, this crossover has more MJ in it than the Spidey books had when she was his wife!
    I’ve been reading ASM since Big Time – planning an email I keep meaning to send in to the podcast about just how wrong they are on the run ( people who provide free content do it to be told they are wrong, right?) – and for the last year Slott has been telling stories about Peter dating Carlie Cooper, and how perfect she was… And then a big crossover about how Peter and MJ are meant to be.
    It just seems really against the point of BND.

    They’re going to Gwen Stacy her, aren’t they?

  22. (Apologies for referring to MJ as ‘himself’ at one point.)

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