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‘Gotham’ Season 1 Recap, Episode 4: ‘Arkham’

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Now that six additional episodes of the crime drama Gotham have been ordered by Fox, we’re looking toward a full 22-episode first season. Although ratings have dropped since the pilot (Sleepy Hollow, also on Fox, was one of only three shows ranked below Gotham Monday night), the series about Batman’s beginnings has managed to hold a firm grip on at least 75% of its audience.

One problem cited by critics familiar with the Batman mythos is Gotham’s inclusion of too many characters (with forced relationships) at the onset. Like an all-you-can-eat buffet, the overstocked spread leaves us inexplicably unsatisfied. On the other hand, whiffs of treats about the city itself – its cavernous sewer system, detached outskirts, and now, the Arkham District – keep us lingering around for something savory.

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

Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 2 Recap, Episode 4: ‘Face My Enemy’

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The fourth season of Agents of SHIELD's second season will probably be remembered mostly for its fightin' -- both because the fightin' was memorable and because the rest of the episode wasn't especially. But that doesn't mean the show's regressed to season one levels, even in spite of so many season one plots stinking up the place.

So what was good, what was bad, and what wonderful new treats from the Marvel Universe did the show throw at us this week? (Prepare to be disappointed on that front.) ComicsAlliance has all the answers in our patent-pending SHLEID recap of 'Face My Enemy', directed by Kevin Tancharoen and written by Drew Z. Greenberg.

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‘The Flash’ Season 1 Recap, Episode 2: ‘The Fastest Man Alive’

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Welcome back to Up To Speed, home of the Flashest Recaps Alive. Here we’ll recap the episodes, dispense some Flash Facts and talk about what works, what doesn't, and where the series might be headed, as we try and keep up with the adventures of Central City’s finest hero, Barry Allen: aka the Red Blur, aka The Flash. This week, we’re looking at the second episode of the inaugural season, titled “The Fastest Man Alive.” How does it stack up against last week’s (pretty good, actually) pilot? Read on and see Flash…natics?

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Hire This Woman: Cartoonist Jessica Garvey

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In the overwhelmingly male comic book industry, it has been a challenge for some editors and readers to see the ever growing number of talented women currently trying to make a name for themselves. With that in mind, ComicsAlliance offers Hire This Woman, a recurring feature designed for comics readers as well as editors and other professionals, where we shine the spotlight on a female comics pro on the ascendance. Some of these women will be at the very beginning of their careers, while others will be more experienced but not yet “household names.”

Cartoonist Jessica Garvey writes, pencils, inks, and colors her own work, which includes her autobiographical comic It Did Happen as well as the webcomic Pink/Blue. She is also a recent graduate of Oklahoma City University with a degree in Studio Art and English.

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5 Ways ‘Southern Bastards’ Absolutely Nails The Modern South

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Image Comics' Southern Bastards has a lot to offer people who enjoy a good crime/revenge comic like I do. There's palpable tension, a sense of some serious wrongs that need to be righted, and people fighting each other with bats (one of them the remnant of a tree that grew out of a grave and was struck by lightning) in the middle of the street.

But, you might say, there are lots of crime comics out there. Heck, Jason Aaron, the writer of Southern Bastards, has penned a good many himself. Scalped and his Punisher run, to name a couple. Southern Bastards is something really special, though, because of the way Aaron and artist Jason Latour embrace its setting so deeply and wholeheartedly.

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The X-Men Episode Guide 5×09: Jubilee’s Fairytale Theater

X-Men Episode Guide 5x09: Jubilee's Fairytale Theater

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, we dive into Jubilee's Erotic Friend Fiction, and everything is different and none of it makes sense.

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Finally: The Complete And Utter Insanity Of ‘Batman: Odyssey,’ Part 6

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This is a post three years in the making. Way back in 2011, David Wolkin and I attempted to deconstruct the madness of Batman: Odyssey, an incomprehensible masterwork by legendary Batman artist (and legendarily terrible Skateman writer) Neal Adams that quickly established itself as the most insane comic we have ever read. When the series was renewed for a glorious second volume, we completed four additional reviews -- but stopped just short of the last two issues.

Our recaps were gratifyingly well-received, inspiring fan art, live readings and even cantankerous comments from Neal Adams himself (or so we choose to believe). And for the last three years, people have been tweeting at us, e-mailing us and asking us at conventions when we would finally complete our coverage of Batman: Odyssey.

That day is today.

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Filed Under: , , Category: DC, Humor, Opinion

A Belated Birthday Celebration Of The Great Ramona Fradon

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Ramona Fradon is one of the great living legends of comics, a creator with an instantly recognizable style who has worked on some of DC Comics' best-loved series -- and co-created a few classic characters along the way. Her crisp, lyrical line has elevated every book she's touched over her six-and-a-half decades in the business, and her work continues to influence and inspire creators to this day.

Fradon graduated from Parsons School Of Design in 1950, and began working at DC almost immediately, pencilling the Shining Knight backup story in Adventure Comics #165 – and when that feature was replaced by Aquaman two issues later, Fradon found her first signature character.

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‘The Legend Of Korra’ Book Four: Kuvira And The Rise Of Fascism

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The premiere episode of The Legend of Korra’s fourth and final season finds the Earth Kingdom navigating choppy waters. In the three years since season 3’s finale, Kuvira has gone from the seemingly content captain of Su Yin’s guard to the “Great Uniter” of a fractured world. She has 90% of the Earth Kingdom under her thumb and, as we learn over the course of the episode, has accomplished this through a campaign of forced labor, manipulation of resources, and a burgeoning cult of personality.

We watch as the governor of Yi, initially committed to independence, is brought to heel by the lawless reality of his state and the temptations of Kuvira’s “generous proposal” of takeover. Idealists like Bolin and Baatar Jr. have joined her cause, as have opportunists like Varrick. Figures of murkily extrajudicial power, like Kai and Opal, urge caution in the face of her might, but by the end of the episode, that’s all they can do—urge caution.

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Ask Chris #215: Klarion The Witch Boy And The Kirby Approach To Horror

Ask Chris art by Erica Henderson

Q: The new Klarion series started this week, and aside from Seven Soldiers and Batman: the Animated Series, I know little about him. What's his deal? -- @T_Lawson

A: Huh. Well this one oughtta be pretty easy, T: He's a Witch Boy. He's a Boy who is also a Witch. That's pretty much all there is to it; Kirby wasn't really all that into subtlety. Now who wants to go get lunch?

[Editor's Note: Chris, we've talked about this.]

Okay, fine. There actually is a little more to it than that, but to be honest, Klarion is less interesting to me on his own than he is in the context of Kirby's other work. He's a Witch Boy, a strange and sinister creature rooted completely in horror, happily existing in a world built for superheroes, and that's actually pretty cool.

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