It's been a pretty good week. I played D&D in three different games, recorded a LEOG and caught Spy Kids at the Alamo, which let me spend a lot of time with many friends and my daughter. And my son and I spent a lot of Friday and Saturday morning watching Backyardigans on the XBox/Netflix.
Shockingly, the Tuesday & Friday off, work Saturday schedule is, so far, better than having Friday & Saturdays off. Not working all of our slowest days, and working one of our busiest, is better for my mental health.
First Saturday night back at work was not too bad. Nice, busy day, nice quiet night that allowed me to get a lot done. Would have loved to have been busy at night, too, but we had a busy enough day that a quiet night was a good thing, not a bad thing.
Apparently we have termites in the house. Possibly only in my home office, but either way... not thrilled. Exterminator is coming on Tuesday. Think happy, non-termite-y thoughts at us.
The San Diego schedules are being announced, folks are announcing product they'll have there, and aside from a couple minor twinges... I'm pretty OK with not going this year. Realization of how much money it cost and how much hassle it was to get into *anything* last year have soured me a bit. I think it's a good thing I'm taking this year off. Also, Fred Phelps and his gang of loons are headed to San Diego, and since it's been a lifetime dream of mine to stomp one of those fuckers to death, it's probably best I'm not being presented with the temptation.
Comics I Read This Week:
Avengers The Children's Crusade #1 - It's not a bad read, and I really liked the Heinberg/Cheung run originally, but... it feels dated, given how much has changed since Civil War, etc. More importantly, it's rooted in the Avengers Disassembled stupidity, which means every page or so is slapping me in the face with the out-of-character behavior the various Avengers (especially Scarlet Witch) have been engaging in. Solidly done, clearly not for me.
Hawkeye & Mockingbird #2 - The WCA codenames are a bit goofy, but in an '80s way I appreciate, and in every other way, this book is being written just for me. McCann broadcasts his last page reveal a bit much, and it's a little darker than I'd like in a book that I want to be kind of caper-y and fun, but overall, I'm really enjoying this.
Hellboy The Storm #1 - I love the new status quo for Hellboy, I love Duncan Fegredo's art and I loved the fight scene that closed out the book.
I Zombie #3 - This has a really weird vibe, an unusual cast and of course, spectacular art. I'm digging it so far.
Shadowland #1 - I've been enjoying Diggle's Daredevil, but I've lost interest in the last couple issues, and I'm really not sold on Shadowland. The writing felt a bit clunky, and I really don't like the moral relativity the Avengers have developed since Bendis relaunched them, and I *really* don't like the new "Do what we tell you or we'll shut you down" arrogance they've had since he relaunched them again. But the biggest problem? Can someone honestly tell me why killing Bullseye, who is an unrepentant mass murderer that they can't keep imprisoned for more than a week, is a bad idea? This is Daredevil's big break with heroism? Sorry, I don't see it.
Steve Rogers Super Soldier #1 - This new spy Cap just doesn't feel like Steve Rogers to me, and I can't stand that no one at Marvel thought to give him an actual job title instead of just "Top Cop of the World and Commander of the Mighty Avengers," both of which are meaningless. That said, if I just view it as a superhero-tinged spy/action book, it's a pretty solid read.
Thor The Mighty Avenger #1 - A continuity-free new Thor series, starting from the beginning in an "Ultimate" type of way (modernizing his origin and his supporting cast) by Roger Langridge & Chris Samnee? Yes, please! Fantastic stuff.
X-Women #1 - Damn near unreadable with the Claremontese, but beautiful to look at.
Young Allies #2 - The "Heroic Age" still has an awful lot of civilian deaths for my tastes, but I really like Gravity and Firestar, and this book is reminding me a bit of what a revamped, new take on the '90s New Warriors would look like, and that's no bad thing.
Retailer Thought of the Week:
Had somebody get kinda surly with me this week because we sold out of Shadowland #1 first day. Now I get that selling out of one of Marvel's big books on the first day seems like an inconceivable error, like I must not have any idea what I'm doing, but here's the thing: It was one of over 75 books we ordered this week. Not including graphic novels and other merchandise, just single issues. We got maybe two or three wrong and sold out too early. I would *love* to be perfect. I hate selling out of stuff too early and I hate having to turn someone away without being able to buy what they want... but asking me to have perfect 100% ordering just seems a bit much.
My Monday D&D group saw them facing down gnomes, bandits, a swordmage and a couple halfling warlocks... not to mention wraiths and the half-mad betraying half-elf warlock who hired them... before turning into an aberrant creature of darkness and trying to murder them all.
Started playing Brutal Legend, which I got for my birthday from my friend Jason, and I'm really enjoying it thus far. Pretty funny writing and voice-acting, solid gameplay.
I was thinking of trading in some old games to get the new Transformers War on Cybertron game, which has been getting amazing reviews, but 8 XBox 360 games would net me about $20 in trade credit at Gamestop. Yeah, that's why I pretty much don't trade in games.
New Red Dead Redemption DLC! Multiplayer Poker, Liar's Dice & Horse Racing! New characters! New weapons! Zombies! Hell yes!
Damn it Bioware, I can't afford to buy a new computer! And I don't have time for a new MMO! But you're going to make me do it, aren't you?
Roger Ebert can't resist poking the bear further, in regards to videogames. Ironically, whenever Ebert writes about videogames, I think of a Twain quote: "It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt." How the guy can be so smart, observant and thoughtful on so many subjects and just pig-headedly, willfully and *loudly* ignorant about videogames is frustrating to me. (I have been reliably informed that this is not actually a Twain quote, even though it has been attributed to him... still, the quote seems apropos)
Louis CK - Everything's Amazing and Nobody's Happy from Conan O'Brien and The Poker Scene from Louie Episode 2
It turns out that I have an opinion on Blue's Clues. The ones with Steve are better than the ones with Joe. And I'm as shocked that I have an opinion on that as anyone.
Netflix decided that Starz canceling Party Down wasn't enough of a kick in the teeth for fans
Regarding Texas Heat:
Having mowed the yard and taken the kids to Amy's for ice cream & playground time on Tuesday, I can confirm: It was super-fucking hot out. You won't get that kind of measurement from our weather people, but you should. Texas heat should be measured not in degrees, but by how many times, on average, you mutter "FUCK! It's Hot!" while outside.
This guy's a tool. "I have to say, it's about 80 right now and perfectly comfortable." Yeah, well, it's usually a hundred here in Texas, and we need our goddamned A/C! Most of his "Republican victories are due to air-conditioning" type points feature spotty logic, as well.
I Love The Onion