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Abhay. 9/26/2007. What?

Abhay Khosla

CABLE AND DEADPOOL #45: They made 45 of these…? Really? This issue is about Deadpool being trapped in a boring comic book. Deadpool and, like, some guy wander around Marvel Comics’ World War 2, and meet Captain America and whoever else. They talk, then that’s followed by another scene of talking. Usually the talking’s just failing to be funny, but at one point, the comic forgets its title and premise and the talking branches out to failing to be serious drama or something. There’s a serious scene of Captain America explaining what it’s like to be Captain America, which is helpful information to … to who exactly? If anyone reading this comic is Captain America in their spare time, boy, they are in luck! Meanwhile, in the present day, a bunch of people who aren’t identified also have a conversation. There’s also a fight– but I didn’t understand how the fight ended much at all, and instead of making me happy that the talking was finally over, it just made me wish they’d get back to having serious conversations about the Nature of Captain America. Anyways, a bunch of crap happens but I couldn’t tell if there was a story being told or not– it didn’t seem like it, but I have no idea since there’s an arc going on. Cable’s not in the issue at all despite the title. Instead, Deadpool hangs out with a 100% rip-off of Arthur from the Tick, which is … charming. Anyway, I don’t really understand what I’m looking at, but it at least tries to be fun even if I’m not sure why this would be fun to anyone. If it lasted 45 issues, someone out there’s having a good time; that must be nice. The art’s by one of the Ten Ton Studios guys. The backgrounds could be stronger, and there’s room for improvement on the storytelling, but it’s consistent and the style is easy to read. Okay.

ANNIHILATION CONQUEST QUASAR #3: This comic book is about two super-religious lesbians whose relationship is damaged because one of them has turned into a dragon. There are several pinup drawings of the two of them that look like 80’s fantasy paperback covers– that Anne McCaffrey shit or whatever. Anyway, they fight a cool lizard that looks like Freddy Krueger’s belly (that design was pretty good). But then the comic becomes a very strange extreme-left-wing fantasy of lesbians setting off a Weapon of Mass Destruction in order to blow up the US Military before the US Military can harm these hairy dark-skinned “noble savages”. It’s strange stuff but I don’t really get comics set in outer space; space opera’s my least favorite stuff in comics. I did enjoy the hyper-earnest Declarations of Love ala old Chris Claremont comics. But besides all that, nothing very interesting happened in this issue– it seemed like whatever weird story is going on here, it was spinning its wheels in this one. That’s just a guess though. Also, the lesbian sticking with her girlfriend even after she’s become a dragon reminded me of wives who stick by their husbands after crippling injuries, all of which made me feel vaguely guilty in so far as I doubt I’d have that same courage if push came to shove. I doubt I’m that good of a person. I’d rather that Quasar not have throw that in my face; still, I liked how weird this was, so this gets an Okay.

SUPERMAN CONFIDENTIAL #6: Have you ever really sat and thought about Superman’s origin? Superman started up in 1932. He grew up on a remote Midwestern farm during the Great Depression. Dirt poor family in a place called Smallville…? I think if you really think about it, and give it some thought, you’d have to come to the conclusion that Superman was probably raised on roadkill. By a “more likely than not” standard, Superman probably cooked up and ate raccoon that some old jalopy ran over, at least once, at least one time. I’m not saying that makes him any less “Super.” I’m not a snob– it was the Great Depression. But I think it’s something DC, the CW, John Byrne, Bryan Singer and his manic-depressive gay Jesus movie, that they’ve all tried to whitewash. I think you’re being lied to. I might even go so far as to say bamboozled. Okay.

SUBMARINER #4: Apparently this is a 6 part limited series…? I didn’t really understand the recap page, which was a bad omen. It seemed like what it was trying to describe might be pretty neat though– skeletons and political intrigue and coups and backstabbing. Can you do high-stakes political intrigue in the same comic as has a H.E.R.B.I.E cameo? I’m not sure. It starts off with good kid-friendly gore, and there’s an adequate amount of punching throughout the comic. On the other hand, Submariner– why do they keep giving him his own series? Isn’t his whole charm that he’s a mean jerk? He’s an asshole to everybody– isn’t that his schtick? Isn’t he a giant asshole dick whose breath tastes like an ass full of brown shit? Doesn’t his asshole sometimes shit smaller assholes which shoot feces onto nuns? Who’d want to read about that kind of guy month in, month out? Not me. The art is in panels which are arranged in a sequence that tells the story; I thought that was a smart choice. The big problem is this ending: it’s a cliffhanger which doesn’t really work because about 50 other comics have used that exact same cliffhanger this year so far. But they have Namor wear clothes in this, at least. Usually he’s half-naked. I don’t want to see that. Not that. Please not that. This made me say Okay to clothes on Namor.

ACHEWOOD: This week has been pretty good, at least early on. Not a novel observation but: I like how sometimes the funniest panel will be the second or fourth or whatever, and not the “punchline.” On the other hand, I found the September 26th entry pretty shaky but then the punchline swooped down and was awesome and made the whole thing great. I didn’t think the September 28th entry was funny at all though. Nothing there spoke to me. Still, Achewood? High highs are worth waiting through the low lows; again, not a novel observation. Still, for the week, my reliance on cliche aside, on the whole, I’d go with Okay.

DEATHBLOW #7: I was reading about death the other day; my personal fear of death is of the “fear of ceasing to exist” variety. I read this theory about the fear of death (which I googled), that it’s a result of people seeing their lives as a narrative, and that those more predisposed to see their lives as a narrative are more likely to fear death. So in a way, reading comics (and movies, books, tv, etc.), do you think they all help make us more predisposed to see our own lives as narratives and to worry more about that narrative, and live less in the moment and fear death more? I don’t know. Probably not. Just a thought. Your ancient philosopher Epicurus might argue that we should all focus on the moment and aim to maintain a state of tranquility. So I’ll give DEATHBLOW #7 an Okay.

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