Call for Feature Essays About Any Aspect of Popular Culture, Present or Past

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Tuesday, Apr 20, 2010
We have no Avengers to help repair this world. They only exist in stories.

Like Judas of old, you lie and deceive.
A world war can be won, you want me to believe.
But I see through your eyes and I see through your brain
Like I see through the water that runs down my drain.
Bob Dylan, “Masters of War”


All for freedom and for pleasure
Nothing ever lasts forever
Everybody wants to rule the world.
Tears For Fears, “Everybody Wants to Rule the World”


Madness in great ones must not unwatched go.
William Shakespeare, Hamlet Act III, Scene I


Like most stories, what was needed was an inciting incident, a starting point for
the tale that was about to begin. An excuse for action. A reason to issue a call to arms. Something that would necessitate inspirational speeches on the field of battle as the fight began. Something time-tested, past-approved and entirely foolproof.


They needed a scapegoat; that much was certain. They needed a failsafe; that, too, was without question. They required a lie with which to blindfold the public; this was unspoken, yet completely understood. They needed personalized artificial motivation to back up that lie, and they needed it in spades.


Wars had been waged. Invasions had occurred. The reign was in trouble, and
what was needed most of all…was a siege. To prove our nation’s might. To prove we were still top dog, despite the fact that others lorded their connection to the heavens over us. These men of power wanted nothing more than to show the rest of the world that America was not to be trifled with.


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Monday, Apr 19, 2010
"You can't create comics for a living in Singapore... yet. But hell, who says you have to?"

An early scene in A Drifting Life describes the strange excitement felt by a young artist upon seeing his first published work. In one small panel of Yoshihiro Tatsumi’s epic memoir, his teenage alter-ego, Hiroshi, stands motionless and anxious, looking at the magazine containing his story.


“Hiroshi felt dizzy and shaky, as if blood was being drawn. He stared at the page for a long time.”


Several young artists and writers from Singapore could soon experience that same sensation, with the publication of the two-volume Arena by the Association of Comic Artists (Singapore) and published by Nice One Entertainment.


Subtitled, “Five tales, five teams, one parade,” each volume of Arena features five stories, one volume for fantasy stories, the other for sci-fi.


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Sunday, Apr 18, 2010

Multiple Power Girl Personality Disorder (MPGPD) is a serious and, currently, untreatable condition that happens when the character known as Power Girl has completely different personalities in the comics in which she appears. When Power Girl is taciturn in the pages of JSA or JSA: All Stars and a goofy bit of alright in the pages of her own self-titled (and, frankly, much more entertaining and engaging) comic you know you are witnessing a case of MPGPD.


How do you know this is happening? It’s simple: She looks the same but acts differently. She flies around, punches and takes down the bad guy and then cracks a joke that’s, actually, funny.


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Thursday, Apr 15, 2010
In a new regular Graphic Novelties segment, Andy Smith explores the deep and abiding connection between superheroes and religion.

Oftentimes, comicbooks do not wear religion so boldly on its spandex sleeve. Historically, X-Men has rarely chosen any side on religion, but the book has never been afraid to use compelling themes from Christianity as plot devices.


Between “Messiah Complex” and “The Second Coming,” creative teams behind the X-Books seem to be especially keen on Christian allusions over the past couple years. They made it easy enough with the rumors of Hope—a child of an impossible birth—being the first new mutant since Scarlet Witch left only a couple hundred after causing the Decimation.


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Wednesday, Apr 14, 2010
Don’t do this to me Grant! DC I beseech thee!!! Do not bring back Bruce Wayne--at least not as Batman. And please, for the love of God, please do not bring him back in the manner depicted on the sketches in the back of Booster Gold #29.

Don’t do this to me Grant! DC I beseech thee!!! Do not bring back Bruce Wayne—at least not as Batman.  And please, for the love of God, please do not bring him back in the manner depicted on the sketches in the back of Booster Gold #29.


Gang, this is not a teaser, it’s the cause of what can only be described as a vascular event. First the pain hit my eye and then my temple, finally I realized what I was looking at. However, without a magnifying glass I cannot be 100 percent certain. What follows? My speculations and reflections on the six frames of the apparent covers for the “Return of Bruce Wayne”.


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