Over the past 40 years, Tom Batiuk’s Funky Winkerbean has transitioned from a gag-a-day comic strip about a high school to an ongoing chronicle of pure, abject misery. Thanks to the commentary on Josh Fruhlinger’s Comics Curmudgeon, I am now completely obsessed with it, which is why I spend a little time every month rounding up its finest examples of crushing despair.
After last month hit rock bottom with the worst Funky Winkerbean strips on record, I was dreading diving into September's offerings even more than usual. That said, it seems like Batiuk has decided to take the month off from pure despair, instead taking a hard left turn into a set of comics that make absolutely no sense. Unless you count the one where an elderly woman is so frustrated with her neighbors that she literally renounces God, I mean. That one could really go either way.
If you've been reading Matt Fraction and Chip Zdarsky's Sex Criminals (and honestly, I'm pretty sure that if you're reading this, you are), then you've probably noticed that one of the best parts of the comic comes in the letters page where the two creators offer the reader tips for a better sex life. Wait, no. "Better" is probably not the right word. Oh well, you get the idea.
Either way, the tips have been very enthusiastically received, and with the success of Sex Criminals, Fraction and Zdarsky are looking to spread the word and penetrate the market by collecting them in Just The Tips a handsome, 96-page hardcover that will look great on your coffee table, or hastily thrown under the sofa when your parents visit. And just in case that doesn't arouse your interest, we've got a massive 23-page preview of the tips and sex positions ready for your perusal.
Please be advised, though, this is extremely not safe for work, unless your work is 100% cool with drawings of boners and buttholes, in which case you probably work for ComicsAlliance and saw it already.
The early ’90s were spoiled for choice when it came to comic book adaptations. Not only was Batman: The Animated Series on the air, but X-Men led Marvel’s push to get on the small screen, diving right into the often convoluted continuity of everyone’s favorite mutants, luring in a generation of fans, and paving the way for cartoons to follow. That’s why we’ve set out to review every single episode of the ’90s X-Men animated series.
This week, it's that adaptation of X-Men Annual #3 that you wanted. What's that? Well, somebody wanted it.
Q: Just re-read Gotham Central and it got me wondering, what's the deal with the Spectre? -- @BatIssues
A: The Spectre was originally created in 1940 by Jerry Siegel and Bernard Baily, but it's worth noting that some sources -- including legendary editor Roy Thomas, who's about as big a fan of DC's Golden Age titles as you're likely to find -- give Siegel full credit for the whole concept, and that's the first interesting point. After all, Siegel is, as you may have heard, the co-creator of arguably the most enduring and significant character in comics history, who's known for his incredible physical strength: Slam Bradley.
Welcome back to Rachel and Miles X-Plain the X-Men, a weekly podcast in which X-Perts Rachel Edidin and Miles Stokes explore the ins, outs, and retcons of fifty years of Marvel’s greatest superhero soap opera!
This week: Professor X is (canonically!) a jerk, Miles has Sidrian Hunter feelings, Kitty Pryde is Clarissa Darling with a dragon, we introduce a drinking game, the X-Men do Barbarella, Rachel has a ‘shipper moment, Rogue joins the team, Storm gets a haircut, Mastermind is still the worst, and Madelyne Pryor is underrated.
Censorship is a serious issue. It's one of the reasons that we here at ComicsAlliance always show our support to organizations like the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund and rally behind creators who have been subjected to governmental restrictions on their work.
Occasionally, though, there are incidents of people pushing to get books banned that slide right past concerning and directly into the world of hilarious ineptitude.
Such is the case with Reverend Phillip Missick of Texas's amazingly named King of Saints Tabernacle Church, who pushed for the Cleveland, TX public library to remove manga like Matsuri Hino's Vampire Knight from its library, owing, of course, to it being a demonic product of Satan that would drag otherwise saintly children directly into the gaping maw of Hell itself. That, of course, is nothing new. What makes it amazing is that he didn't stop there, going so far as to declare pretty much everything around the manga to be the product of Satan, including a few Harry Potter toys, a bouquet of dried roses, and the actual room itself to be "occultic and demonic."
Comedy sketches about superheroes tend to be a pretty mixed bag. We know, they're sent to us each time one emerges from the ether. So believe us, we're as surprised as you are that the good people over at Nerdist have managed to knock out two in a single month that are pretty hilarious. Hot on the heels of a short about Batman's parents not actually being dead comes "STA: Superhero Talent Agency," which imagines a world where heroes have agents to get them endorsement deals and television appearances, and just what exactly that requires.
If there's one thing we've learned from our years on the Internet, it's that there's no aspect of comics that can't be broken down and quantified in a single definitive list, preferably in amounts of ten. And since there's no more definitive authority than ComicsAlliance, we're taking it upon ourselves to compile Top Ten Lists of everything you could ever want to know about comics.
This week, we're taking a look back on the many mullets bowl-cuts and other assorted disasters with the ten worst haircuts in superhero comic history!
Since the launch of DC Comics' New 52 back in 2011, Superman's costume has been basically trunkless, causing consternation among many hardcore fans. Best known for his contributions to DC: The New Frontier, The Spirit and IDW's The Rocketeer, cartoonist J. Bone has concocted a costume that is almost exactly the opposite of the characters armor-like New 52 togs: They're pretty much just trunks and a cape.
Hello, friends. How was your summer? Good, I hope. But all that is behind us now; it's time to get back to work. Deflate the beach balls; put away the flip-flops; unpack the waterproof poncho. Agents of SHIELD is back, and I'm back to recap it. (Inexplicably, I was not fired for my recaps last season. I was actually promoted. Sorry, everyone.)
Long-time readers will recall that my major objection to Marvel's Agents of SHIELD is that it just didn't make enough use of its Marvel Universe playground. It didn't need Chris Evans pouting beautifully in every episode; it just needed to exploit the assets it had. Season one never did; yet everything I've heard about season two makes me want to give the show another chance. Because, like Doctor Doom, I'm very smart but I never learn.
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