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Wait, What? Ep. 99: Ex See, Eye Ex

Jeff Lester

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From Gabrielle Bell’s The Voyeurs

This is a pretty decent episode, I think, and we’ve got at least one surprise announcement in it (a less-surprising announcement: this is a skip week for us, so there’ll be no episode next week), as well as some talk about books not out yet, books that may have slid past your radar, and we get our Englehart on. God yes, do we get our Englehart on.

After the jump: Show notes! Show link! Show…me the money?

1:04-6:06: Introductory comments.  What the weather is like for Graeme.  What Jeff had for lunch.  You know…the essential stuff.  Also, Graeme has some ideas about what to do for ep. 100 that, perhaps unsurprisingly, are a little heavy on the post-production side of things.
6:06-14:10: Before Watchmen: Minutemen #3 by Darwyn Cooke.  Graeme has read it; Jeff has not.  The phrase “potentially man-rapey” is used. I don’t know; is that a phrase that I should issue a trigger warning for?  Also under discussion–how long a memory do Internet haters really have, anyway?
14:10-25:46: Superman, Wonder Woman, and Justice League #12.  I guess you could consider this spoilery?  Hint:  better than Justice League International Annual #1, though.  Also, Graeme has read both the Flash and Superman Annuals and tells Jeff about them.
25:46-26:42: The dreaded technical difficulties kick up, so we decide we are going to call one another back.  If you must skip 56 seconds from any podcast this month, true believer, let it be these 56 seconds!
26:42-27:51: Back again.
27:51-39:37: Back to Graeme’s Calvacade of DC Annuals, as he finishes talking about the Superman Annual and then covers the Green Lantern Annual, which leads us into the DC career of Geoff Johns, past and present.  He has no trouble leaving titles–is it time for him to leave Green Lantern?
39:37-48:01: And along those lines, who has two thumbs and is the last person on the Internet to hear about this new Justice League title?  Jeff, who is even now using one of those thumbs to hit the space bar and type this.
48:01-48:01: Speaking of Jeff: why is he reading Batman?  It’s a question that ties back to Rob Liefeld’s TigerBloodian outburst on Twitter.
48:01-1:05:25: A follow-up question from Graeme:  “Are there characters who are so interesting to you that you will feel at least strongly tempted to try the first issue of a new creative team?”  This allows Jeff to talk about one of his more insane theories (even for him): the secret existence of a decade-long Challengers of the Unknown film franchise. The conversation goes on to cover 9/11, why Marvel heroes appear to be more successful at fitting into the zeitgeist than DC heroes, aspirational heroes compared to feet-of-clay heroes, superhero comic book culture, and more.  It’s a discussion that catches Graeme at his most optimistic and Jeff at his, uh, Jeffiest. (That doesn’t sound like a euphemism for “gloomy” at all, but is meant to!)
1:05:25-1:10:54: “It’s very hard for me to talk about during an election season.”  If you don’t want us to sound bewildered about the Republican National Convention (or to hear Jeff sound bewildered about the United States), you may want to skip this part.
1:10:54-1:18:06: Thank god, we move on to talking about Archie #636, with art by the ever-talented and ever-talkworthy Gisele.
1:18:06-1:38:10: Also worthy of praise–and we do so extensively–is Vision & Scarlet Witch: A Year In the Life by Steve Englehart and Richard Howell.  Unsurprisingly, Graeme and Jeff proceed to nerd out heavily, talking about the differences between Englehart’s work in the ’70s and ’80s; and the renunciation of Englehart at various times in the Marvel Universe.  Big thanks for listener J. Smitty for making this discussion possible.
1:38:10-1:44:49:  On the opposite end of the medium, but which Jeff also finds excellent: Gabrielle Bell’s The Voyeurs from Uncivilized Books.
1:44:49-1:51:28: More stuff that Jeff likes: New Deadwardians, Prophet #28 (especially the terrific format for the Brandon Graham/Fil Barlow interview about the creative process behind Zooniverse), Axe Cop: President of the World #2, and Emo Galactus by R.M. Rhodes and Meredith Burke (debuting at SPX!)
1:51:28-2:08:17: By contrast, Graeme has read a preview of…Black Kiss #2 and Happy by Grant Morrison and Darick Robertson. [Whoops: we broke an embargo on that one.  Sorry, Image!] On a related note: the schedule at Morrisoncon? Pretty stunning.
2:08:17-2:08:56: Our recording schedule…and plans for episode 100!
2:08:56-end: Would you like to call in with a question and have your voice on the 100th episode?  We’ve figured out a way you can! Listen in here to get the super-secret Wait, What? phone number and leave a message! As a bonus, Graeme tries to wrap his head around the early numbering system of our podcast…and fails!
See?  That sounds like a chunky little episode, right?  And we’re even giving you a chance to catch up before ep. 100!
As Beatles sung in their classic, Here, There & On iTunes, you may have already encountered ep. 99 here, there, or on iTunes.  If not, for the first option do see below:
Wait, What? Ep. 99: Ex See, Eye Ex
As always, we hope you enjoy! Please consider leaving us a question or comment at our super-special secret phone number, and we’ll talk at you in two weeks!

33 Responses to “ Wait, What? Ep. 99: Ex See, Eye Ex ”

  1. Jeff, I vote for you attending MorrisonCon with the purpose of brewing bloody revolution and driving out the Grant Morrison look-a-like and his cronies. Then you can rule over “JeffLester!Con, a convention a million times worse than three San Diego Comic Cons put together.

  2. Maybe have Hibbs on again? Or a phone-in with someone from the Waffle Window? (Or munch on waffles while chatting?)

  3. As for 100th episode suggestions, why not bad-mouth Stephanie Brown? As with DC before, the “Waffles for Stephanie” movement will keep your inbox stuffed with waffles for many shows to come.

  4. Graeme – Drop me a line on Twitter (@oletheros) with some details and I’ll send you a copy of Emo Galactus.

  5. All this talk about MorrisonCon reminds me of a similar event I went to last year.
    It was called ‘Comics Masterclass with Colleen Doran’ or something to that effect, and it was 2 straight days of Colleen Doran talking about how she approaches writing, drawing and almost all of the second day was talken up with insider stuff about contracts, looking for work, film royalties, etc. There were frequent chances to ask questions, a raffle, regular breaks to mingle with other people, and one of the larger bookstores had partnered with the event and was selling books at the back. What was even more amazing is that Colleen showed up sick as a dog on the second day and worked right through it, using it as an opportunity about what it means to be a freelancer and the fact you dont get sick leave.
    Anyway, this whole thing cost about $120.
    Morrison better have some insanely insightful shit to say or something if people have really paid $1000 to be there.
    Another weird thing about the event I went to is that there was an hour (maybe a bit less) where Colleen just talked about how awesome Frank Miller and Howard Chaykin are. I dont really see MorrisonCon being a place where he’d be able to be that open with the audience.
    But who knows, looking forward to hearing stories from it.

    Keeping on the Morrison topic, sad to hear that Happy! didnt measure up for Graeme. I should probably just take his advice and avoid it, but Im a fool.

  6. I insist episode 100 be a musical.

  7. Seconded!

  8. Lumping MSI in with Linkin Park and Korn seems unfair.

    Their comic connections (that I know of) are

    1. Jhonen (Johnny the Homicidal Maniac/Invander Zim) Vasquez did the art for one of their albums, and directed one of their music videos: Shut Me Up. Watch it?

    2. Had a comic come out from Image last year with art by Jess Fink. It was alright.

  9. I’d love to have the 100th episode focus entirely on comic reviews and discussion and skip the meta-commentary. Maybe have Hibbs on to join you as well.

    I like the meta stuff but think this could be a nice change of pace.

  10. Re Englehart: Consider this…

    While ‘Vision and the Scarlet Witch’ was coming out he was also working on West Coast Avengers, Coyote, AND Green Lantern. Not too long after that he also wrote Silver Surfer, the Fantastic Four, the weekly Millenium mini and even a couple of New Universe stories. Quite a remarkable amount of work in a four year period…

  11. richmond_Pope on September 4th, 2012 at 4:04 am said:

    “…(Or munch on waffles while chatting?)…”

    I think Jeff does this most episodes anyway.

    the title will (of course) be 100th Episode SPECTACULAR!

  12. Somebody has to comment on how weird that Challengers of the Unknown/Final Destination/9-11 conversation was.

    After turning it over in my head I think you guys might be on to something about cynicism in American culture, especially comics (maybe it worth revisting this point in relation to Walking Dead) but for that really hasnt been my experience. Granted I live in Australia, don’t watch TV, my comic reading has been mostly old Judge Dredds and Ive been watching Doctor Who, Community and Breaking Bad online (as depressing as that show it is far from deterministic about stuff).
    Are there any other major landmarks Im missing of the great wide deterministic, depressing, modern american pop culture?
    And how does that stack up for listeners in other parts of the world?

  13. Dave makes an amazing point and launches me on my “what should the 100th episode be about?” pitch.

    100 episodes. How have you changed as a person and comics reader in that time? What were some landmark issues or turning points for you in your reading life?

    Commenters could answer the same questions via the call-in or in the comments section.

    As to your question, Dave, I have to say that there is a general feeling of self-loathing running as an under current in a large swath of cultural material. Confidence is not high in all but the most irrational and it’s also an election year which provides plenty of divisive angst.

    Fighting a war for ten years is never a healthy thing to have in your cultural make-up either.

    But, in the “bright spots” column I firmly place Radio Lab. Jad and Krulwich make my day regularly and I think it falls well outside Jeff’s NPR negative spectrum. ;-)

  14. Oh! You should discuss what the best comics to hit issue #100 were, and thoughts on how constant renumberings/cancellations mean comics don’t get up that high any more.

  15. Re: 100- Get Hibbs on to bury.. er… I mean to compare and contrast the various Marvel and DC publishing schemes and events since the start of the podcast… what worked and what didn’t (it is the Savage Critics podcast, after all). Or, if Hibbs doesn’t have the time, you guys can maybe do the same or go over your favorite comics news/controversies/scandals since the podcast started.

    If there is a benevolent comics god watching over all of us, S****** W***** will leave a snarky, condescending message (but couched as neither snarky nor condescending because everybody picks on poor Marvel)for you guys to play on the show. Or perhaps Matt Fraction will call up and say that his Marvel work really has been a cry for help and you guys were right all along. :)

  16. You should start your numbering with the next episode at 99.01 and ask everone how they like them apples?!?

    If you do actually do a Big 100 Edition I think it would be nice if, just this once, the pair of you put some bloody clothes on!

    Whatever you do it will not fail to be history in the making!

  17. Episode 100: CLAREMONT!!!

  18. ^^^Seconded!

  19. If one of you doesn’t grow four extra arms, I’m gonna rip up my mint condition copy of Wait What #1.1

    Seriously, though, if I could have anything I wanted in the next podcast, it would be Graeme’s Tom Jones impression.

  20. I think you guys fell trap the blowing out of proportion the comments Rob made about Batman, also the % Snyder & Capullo are affecting the sales of Batman.

    Batman is one of the very short list of characters that I would completely expect to have a built in audience (even if neither either of you guys or me fall into that). Also the guy took over X-Force and turned it into a million seller with new characters he created so it was both Rob & the character & a whole lot more.

    If you look at the Batman books right now there are so many countless things that are flowing into that book.

    First it is only selling 50k more than Detective.

    It is being marketed as the ‘main’ Batman book.

    It just finished being the spine of the first Nu52 crossover, about to be the spine of another.

    The year of the final chapter of Nolan’s Batman films. (the free preview related to this was half Geoff Johns half Batman #1)

    On the heels of successful rejuvenation of Batman into the video game space.

    I am not going to doubt that Snyder & Capullo(more him) might be 25% of sales, maybe.

  21. Realize I am .001 of 1% but I definitely stayed on because of Capullo, Rick.

    There was definitely an allure of seeing him do something outside of McFarlane-verse.

  22. I’m definitely not reading Prophet because I was excited to see the return of that character. I’m buying that book for the creative team.

  23. Sure I buy every book because of the creative team, but I am also part of the vocal minority who actually talks about the stuff I read online. Also Batman != Prophet or hell any character outside probably Superman & Spider-Man.

  24. Claremont would be great. I don’t care if it’s episode 100 or not.

    I think you need to renumber and start over at Podcast #1. AMAZING FIRST PODCAST THAT SENDS SHOCKEWAVES THROUGHOUT THE WAIT, WHAT UNIVERSE.

  25. Gatefold podcast.

  26. As much as I’ve disagreed with every sentiment that has unfolded from the superfluous pouch belts of Rob Liefeld’s mind to seethe through his little tiny Chiclet teeth, I’ve gotta say… I wasn’t impressed with how Scott Snyder came across in that whole kerfuffle. Is BATMAN’s success just “the character”? Obviously not — the barometer on sales swings high and low, depending on creatives teams, crossovers, shifts in wind, etc. I would’ve thought Snyder coulda been, I dunno, a little more humble, gracious, whatever in his responses. Certainly he was primed for success like few writers on a flagship book have ever been before– a #1 relaunch, tied into a highly publicized continuity reboot, teamed with a much-watched artist shifting from Image to the Big Two, on a franchise with a heightened profile thanks to a major hit video game and hotly anticipated film in the pipeline, etc., etc.

    And besides, it’s never as simple as just “creator” vs. “character” — there’s always some magic alchemy between the two. What’s the math? I think if you take the highest selling issue of Morrison’s BATMAN, subtract the seven year low for the title, and divide the result by the lowest selling issue of SEAGUY — then I think you’ve got the character/creator factor. And /or the Anti-Life Equation: quo ipso ibid, Q.E.D.

    In other news, can I humbly request, “God, Jesus, no Claremont.” Instead, I vote for a Giant Size MAN-THING sized fill-in issue. On today’s very special episode, Graeme is portrayed by John K (UK) and Jeff is portrayed by Abhay. GO!

  27. For episode 100 you should do 10 variant cover introductions. A lenticular cover by Alex Ross of Graeme’s yapping dogs (Can’t remember their names dammit). A cover by Rob Liefeld, which would be a great “jumping off point”. A nude drawing of Matt Fraction (also a great jumping off point). The 52 sides of Dan Didio. etc.

  28. I think the Challengers did work after 9-11, but it was called Global Frequency at the time. I think that idea holds closer to an updated version of Challengers than any Challengers remake, if only because of the notion that anyone could be a part of Global Frequency, just like anyone could have been in NY and helped others during 9-11. The Global Frequency poses the Challengers as an emergency response team that have specific archetypes (specialists) that are at the top of their field and will drop everything to help stop “ticking time bombs that the government created” sounds right in line with the aspirational aspects and the DIY ethos that emerged in a post-911 world.

  29. A free lines phone-in arrangement would be perfect, but I’d go one step further and see if you can’t get a handful of those listeners who also happen to be comics industry professionals to drop in at specific times and chat/pay their respects/roast/etc. for the first two hours and then save the last hour for open lines.

  30. Gary, your analysis of Global Frequency as Challengers of the Unknown would sound awesome, if I knew anything about the Challengers of the Unknown aside from the annotations that told me they were those guys in issue 4 of 52.

  31. As far as classic anniversary issues of comics go, I think for episode 100 you should follow what the original run of Avengers did for issue 150. Have the previous issues build up to a climax, then run a fill in issue (episode) for the anniversary issue and have the story come to fruition in 151.

    Well, it was a thought

  32. Jeff, the funny thing about your savage (har har) takedown of Glass is that I only have 3 podcasts on my iTunes, and two of them are public radio, including This American Life! So there is some crossover, I guess.

  33. [...] Galactus sold out. It got a favorable review from the Wait, What guys and an unexpected bump on The Beat on Friday morning, which most of my friends said something to me [...]

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