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

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Thursday, Feb 11, 2010
"Murder, Morphine and Me", by Jack Cole

Plastic Man never shows his eyes. True, you see them when he’s out of costume and character, resuming the role of his alter-ego, Eel O’Brien. But the character with which Jack Cole has become most associated never lets you see his eyes.


‘Cartoonists “become” each character in their comics, acting out every gesture and expression’, writes Art Spiegelman in Jack Cole and Plastic Man: Forms Stretched to Their Limits (co-created with Chip Kidd). ‘It’s in this ontological sense that Cole most resembles Plastic Man—as the Spirit of Cartooning’.


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Wednesday, Feb 10, 2010

He’s the greatest superhero you’ve never heard of! Well, if you follow the DCU you’ve probably heard of him, but may not yet have embraced him. His name is Booster Gold. And now’s the time to get to know him.


Booster Gold comes to us a failure from the future only to return to the past a hero to protect the timeline. His cover? An egocentric, media-hungry, JLA B-Lister named. . .Booster Gold. In fact, not only might he be the greatest superhero you’ve never heard of, but it’s high time Booster Gold take his place among the pantheon of the greatest superheroes of all-time.


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Tuesday, Feb 9, 2010

Sometimes plans change. Originally, I ‘d meant to review the second half of Earth X’s storyline, then take a closer look at the artwork of both the covers and interiors. However, on rereading, one main concept of the book is overwhelming my thoughts: sacrifice. Heroes must always sacrifice. It is what sets them apart from everyone else. The idea of being selfless is often foreign to many. Too often, people are too selfish to do what is right. By contrast the characters in our comicbooks sacrifice and selflessness it look so easy.


 


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Monday, Feb 8, 2010
"Companion Tommy, sound your horn!" A story for the ages and, of course, our age, The Unwritten's goals are lofty indeed, and its creators do not shy from them, lest their work lose validity.

“If God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent him”.
-  Voltaire


Many things can be said about the latest Vertigo work to emerge from the team
of Mike Carey and Peter Gross. It can be said that The Unwritten is an examination of the human need to escape into a fictional world during troubled times. Or The Unwritten is metaphorical look at just how powerful the creative process truly is. Or a profound meditation on individuality, identity and the all-too-common theft thereof. Or a warning to pay attention to our own history so that we don’t repeat the mistakes of our ancestors. Even an outward strike at J. K. Rowling seemingly “borrowing” concepts from Gross’ Books of Magic for her records-breaking Harry Potter cycle.


In all honesty, The Unwritten is all these things and more.


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Sunday, Feb 7, 2010

“The superpowers often behave like two heavily armed blind men feeling their way around a room, each believing himself in mortal peril from the other, whom he assumes to have perfect vision.”
-  Dr. Henry Kissinger (1923-present), former National Security Advisor and Secretary of State


Since the beginning of the genre, the underlying subtext of superhero comics, so
beautifully brought to its logical boiling point over the last several years of Marvel stories (from House of M through the current Siege and Fall of the Hulks), has been the potential of the superman (or even Superman) to become a weapon. In order to stop America from creating an army of super-soldiers, a Nazi agent murdered Dr. Abraham Erskine. When the United States Armed Forces couldn’t weaponize the Hulk, they decided to hunt him. When President Lex Luthor couldn’t manipulate or control Batman and Superman, he sought to destroy them. And how soon we forget the magic words “Shazam!” and “Kimota!”…


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