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Opinion

Marguerite Sauvage’s Wonder Woman And The Slowly Changing Face Of Comic Book Fashion

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For the most part, mainstream comics don’t care about fashion. But sometimes, something sneaks through and reminds us all of why this matters. Sensation Comics #7, illustrated by Marguerite Sauvage from a script by Sean E. Williams, is that rare, trembling shaft of light into the dank, Dragon Ball Z-print-button-downed basement that is the state of fashion in comics.

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Ask Chris #214: DC’s Dracula Comics

Ask Chris #214, art by Erica Henderson

Q: Aside from the amazing cover for Superman #180, what's the best DC Comics story featuring Dracula? -- @brendan42

A: October is the month where I always find myself thinking about Dracula even more than I usually do, and just the other day I was thinking about how weird it is that there's never been a really good story about Batman fighting Dracula. They've tried it a couple of times, sure -- including a direct-to-video movie that takes a premise like Batman vs. Dracula and ends up committing the cardinal sin of being boring -- but it never really takes. Once I got your question, though, I started thinking about it, and I realized that there aren't many good stories about any DC Comics character fighting Dracula.

It turns out that dude just doesn't show up a whole lot in the DC Universe. And that's pretty weird.

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Filed Under: , , , , Category: Ask Chris, DC, Opinion

Top Five Scariest Villains In Comics

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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 Five lists of everything you could ever want to know about comics.

This week, we're kicking off October's spoooooky celebrations with a list of five comic book villains who are actually, genuinely terrifying. Check it out, but beware -- it gets scary!

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Buy This Book: Jeff Parker, Doc Shaner And Jordie Bellaire’s ‘Flash Gordon’

Flash Gordon, Dynamite Entertainment

I consider myself to be a pretty big Flash Gordon fan, but when you get right down to it, I only really like one very specific version of that character: The one from the amazing 1980 movie where he takes down Ming the Merciless while rocking out to Queen. I love that movie to pieces, but it's a very specific kind of love that doesn't necessarily transfer to other version of the franchise. Every time Flash, Dale and Dr. Zarkov make their perennial return to the comics page, it always leaves me pretty cold, and even though I'm the biggest possible fan of Jeff Parker, Doc Shaner, and Jordie Bellaire, there was a part of me that expected that the new series from Dynamite would end up doing the same thing.

And then I read the issue where Ming orders Flash to fight to the death in a gladiatorial battle against an army of beast-men, and Flash straight up gets in front of a space camera to cut a Stone Cold Steve Austin promo about how he's going to tear their horns off and choke them out with their own tails, and I realized things were going to be just fine.

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Deconstructing The Horrific And The Humane In Kerascoet & Fabien Vehlmann’s ‘Beautiful Darkness’

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It is a truth, universally acknowledged, that Fabien Vehlmann and Kerascoët's Beautiful Darkness has been one of the undisputed standouts in the not unglorious year of comics 2014. Originating from the mind and sketch/notebooks of Marie Pommepuy (she, and partner Sébastien Cosset collaborate under the pen-name Kerascoët), the story of a group of tiny people springing from the body of a dead girl in the woods and the vicious lengths and efforts they go to to survive is appreciable on several, complex levels. One of the facets of great art is that it lingers in the mind, burrows and shifts, dredging up thought and questions, analyses, re-evaluation, and Beautiful Darkness is no different. And so, to accompany my original review, I've compiled a deconstruction of sorts presented here as various questions (answered and unanswered) and theories that dig further into the text and its potential readings.

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Best Comic Book Covers Ever (This Month): September 2014

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A great comic book cover is an advertisement, a work of art, a statement, and an invitation. A great comic book cover is a glimpse of another world through a canvas no bigger than a window pane. In Best Comic Book Covers Ever (This Month), we look back over some of the most eye-catching, original and exceptional covers of the past month.

September's covers include masterclass composition from Genndy Tarkakovsky and Noelle Stevenson, some beautiful uses of light, color, and contrast, and some very different portraits of gods, old and new.

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‘Gotham’ Season 1 Recap: Episode 2: ‘Selina Kyle’

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Oh, Gotham. You’re a show about the city that created Batman. The city that raised Poison Ivy, Catwoman, and the Penguin. With so much about these characters’ behavioral profiles already established by DC Comics, don’t you have at least a basic responsibility to teach us something about the development, manifestation and course of psychopathology? We’re watching because we want to know what led these characters down such crooked paths, and how Bruce Wayne rose out of his trauma to create the formidable crime-fighter we know as the Dark Knight. We already know the future’s end, so tell us something worthwhile about the beginnings. It’s the least you can do.

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Filed Under: , , Category: DC, Opinion, Television, TV Recaps

‘Gotham Academy’ #1 Gets An A++ (And Extra Credit For A Batman Appearance)

Gotham Academy cover by Becky Cloonan

Gotham Academy is exactly the comic book I want to read.

That probably doesn't come as a surprise to anyone who's been reading ComicsAlliance for any significant amount of time. I mean, if you made a list of the things I like seeing in my comics, then Batman, teenage mystery solvers, and high school drama set in a superhero universe are all things that are going to land pretty close to the top of the list, and those three elements form the exact core of Gotham Academy's premise. It's so perfectly designed to fit my very specific tastes that you'd actually have to work hard to combine them into something that I wouldn't like.

Because of that, it might be tempting to write off anything nice I have to say about the book, but trust me: this first issue of Gotham Academy is great, not just because it's got a bunch of stuff I want to see, but because Becky Cloonan, Brenden Fletcher, Karl Kerschl, Geyser, and Dave McCaig, have produced one of the most solid starts of the year.

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Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 2 Recap, Episode 2: ‘Heavy Is The Head’

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Last week, Agents of SHIELD came back strong, and not, "oh, it's better than it was" strong, but "oh, it might actually be good" strong, with the new ragtag outsider premise making for much more interesting dynamic -- and the use of the Absorbing Man pushing all the right nerd buttons.

This week's episode, 'Heavy Is The Head', directed by Jesse Bochco and written by Paul Zbyszewski, picks up where last week's ended -- but can it keep up the pace, the energy, and the quality? Has Agents of SHIELD ever had two good episodes in a row? Could this be that blessed day? Find out, thanks to our ComicsAlliance-exclusive S.H.L.E.I.D. recap system.

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Wifey Material: DC’s Sexist Superhero Shirts And How Licensing Works -UPDATED With Comment From DC

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DC Comics has been the butt of a lot of jokes and criticism about sexist depictions of female characters and the company's lack of female creators. But recently DC has been making strides towards employing more women in creative roles and publishing more progressive, women-centric books like Gotham Academy, the new Batgirl and the Wonder Woman anthology Sensation Comics that seem to have a lot to offer women readers. It’s disappointing, then, to see a rash of new licensed DC apparel aimed at women with sexist slogans like “Training to be Batman’s wife.” This kind of clothing does not send women the message that they are welcome within the DC Universe as anything but prizes to be won.

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Filed Under: , , , Category: Culture, DC, Fashion, News, Opinion

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