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Opinion - Page 4

Ask Chris #242: The Worst Place In The World

Ask Chris #242, background art by Dave Johnson

Q: Which city in comics would be the worst to live in? In Gotham there's nutcases with random crimes, but New York and Metropolis attract trouble on a your-city-will-be-killed-at-once scale. -- @rj_white

A: That's the thing about living in a fictional universe, RJ: Generally speaking, it is an absolutely terrible idea. I mean, our world may have its share of pretty awful troubles, but at least you can rest reasonably assured that you won't have to deal with being poisoned into a smiley death by a murderous clown just because you wanted to go check out the museum's new exhibit on original folios of Shakespeare's comedies, or got bonked on the head by a dude in a lime green suit and suspended over a vat of boiling acid because you were really good at crossword puzzles.

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Bizarro Back Issues: Malibu’s Ultraviolent ‘Street Fighter’ Comic (1992)

Street Fighter, Malibu Comics

I've never been good at playing fighting games, but when I was growing up, there were few things in this world I loved more than Street Fighter. I think I've mentioned this before, but my first memory of actually trying to make a comic was when I was ten years old and I drew the junkyard fight scene from Batman #425 and replaced the bad guys with Blanka and Dhalsim, and really, you can draw a pretty straight line from that to where I am today. I've even written a tiny little bit of Street Fighter comics myself, and I am still very much a person who thinks karate guys throwing fireballs at each other is the highest form of art.

Of course, they didn't exactly make it easy for us to like Street Fighter back then. The games were great, sure, but if you wanted a little more story about it on this side of the Pacific, your options were pretty slim. There was the movie in 1994, and the cartoon that was somehow a sequel to it, but if you wanted to see those characters in comics, you had only one choice: Malibu's Street Fighter --- the comic so legendarily rough that it was canceled after three issues with an apology from the publisher.

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Filed Under: , Category: Humor, Opinion

Recon:Vergence Week Seven: Swamp Thing Vs Vampires; Kamandi Vs Gorillas; and Guy Gardner Hits Dragons a Baseball Bat

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Welcome to Recon:Vergence, a weekly look at what’s going on throughout DC’s new reality-smooshing event storyline, Convergence. This week: Chaos in the stadium as worlds collide and we head towards the final confrontation.

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Ask Chris #241: The Suicide Squad, Then And Now

Ask Chris #241: The Suicide Squad, Then And Now

What made the Ostrander/Yale Suicide Squad work and others not? John Ostrander and Kim Yale, along with Luke McDonnell, Geof Isherwood, Karl Kesel and other artists. They were creators who were absolutely at the top of their game over the course of Squad's 66-issue run, and you can't really get away from the fact that when Ostrander came back for stuff like Raise the Flag and the Blackest Night one-shot, those books were immediately right back in step with some of the best stories of the run. They were, hands down, one of the best creative teams in the history of superhero comics.

But at the same time, I don't think that's the whole story. When you get right down to it, Suicide Squad wasn't just a product of its time, it was the kind of comic that could only really happen in 1987.

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‘DC You’ Claims Diverse Stories, Offers Generic Cool-Dad Language

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Yesterday, DC Comics announced a new marketing initiative that it has titled "DCYou," aimed at celebrating "Fan-Favorite Characters, Top-Notch Talent, Diverse Stories and DC Fans," according to the press release.

This being DC, there are some notable missteps in this initial launch that don't bode well for the campaign as a whole. The biggest problem seems to be a corporate appropriation of messages that the publisher thinks readers want to hear, which lack something when run through the filter of corporate language. The hope is that this signals good intentions, but recent creator numbers at DC don't back that up.

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‘The Flash’ Season 1 Recap, Episode 23, ‘Fast Enough’

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Welcome back to Up To Speed, home of the the Flashest Recaps Alive. Here we’ll recap the latest episode of The Flash, 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 the fastest man alive, Barry Allen, more widely known as The Flash.

This week, we're rushing headlong into the first season finale, titled "Fast Enough." This episode has it all: a wedding, hell of deaths, time travelin', Thawne-spawn in guyliner, hamburgers of horror, a gaggle of dads but just one mom, dim sum, dimmer fates, and oh yeah, the end of the world -- all in under 45 minutes. We've got a lot of ground to cover, so let's get this show on the road.

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Recon:Vergence Week Six: Kord Vs Kord; Aquaman Vs Radiators; Waller Vs Everyone

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Welcome to Recon:Vergence, a weekly look at what’s going on throughout DC’s new reality-smooshing event storyline, Convergence.

Every week until the end of the event, every comic DC publishes will be a part of this giant storyline – and it’s a little confusing, especially for new readers. To help out, we’re going to provide a timeline of events, let you know which Universes are still in the fight, and try and keep everything on track.

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Where ‘Arrow’ Season 3 Went Wrong: Demons, Legacies and Flash-y Crossovers

Arrow Season 3 Review What Went Wrong
The CW

The CW's Arrow closed out Season 3 this past week with the surprisingly final "My Name is Oliver Queen," but for many a creeping sense of indirection has permeated the emerald archer's arc this year. Now, we attempt to pinpoint where Arrow went astray, including a character absence that may surprise you, and what hope we might find for Season 4.

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Ask Chris #240: What’s So Great About Usagi Yojimbo? Everything.

Ask Chris #240: What's So Great About Usagi Yojimbo?

Q: What's the big deal with Usagi Yojimbo, anyway? - @cwidtz

A: If you're not already familiar with Usagi Yojimbo, I can see why it might be a hard sell. On paper, it just sounds weird. I mean, it's a long-running samurai story where all the characters are cute furry animals, and that's just the start of things. It's exhaustively researched and set in feudal Japan, frequently using actual historical events as the centerpieces of its stories, but also ghosts and magic are completely real, it's cartoonish and frequently very funny with great buddy comedy bits and a ton of slapstick humor, but it's also very serious and violent, with the highest on-panel body count of any comic I read, and everyone who really loves it won't shut up about how great the word balloons are when people die. Even if you're willing to believe that it's very good, there's a lot there that sounds like it'd be hard to get into.

But since you asked, here's the big deal with Usagi Yojimbo: Stan Sakai's been doing this comic for over thirty years, and he hasn't done a bad issue yet.

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‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’ Report Card: How the Comics’ Heroes Have Fared on the Screen

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The Avengers are very famous indeed. After the success of their second movie as a team — and the tenth movie to feature any of the members — the Marvel heroes have a presence and profile in our culture like never before. It's a strange new reality to adjust to for those of us who remembers when co-workers, cousins and schoolmates had no knowledge of Iron Man or Black Widow, and perhaps only the vaguest idea about Captain America, and they thought of the Hulk as a sad man named David with flared trousers and a haunting piano theme.

Now millions know these characters and could probably pick them out of a line-up. But the non-comics audience knows slightly different versions of the characters than the ones we might be used to. Sometimes the changes made from page to screen are for the better, sometimes for the worse, and sometimes they're... just different. In the best cases, the movies offer brilliant new takes on the characters that inform and refresh their comic book counterparts. So with that in mind, where does Avengers: Age of Ultron leave the best-known versions of these heroes?

This article contains extensive spoilers for Avengers: Age of Ultron. It's been out for almost two weeks; you should have seen it by now.

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