About David Holloway

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Daredevil TV Series Trailer: Watch It Here

It’s not long until April 10th. I have to keep telling myself that.

So what do you think? Looking good?

Review: Diskordia – Feels Like Falling

Diskordia_vol_1_pdf__page_69_of_356_I came very close to giving up on reviewing this title. That’s not often the case, and in this instance I’m glad I forced myself to read beyond the first issue, because it has a lot to offer.

What put me off initially was the challenging way the story is told. I just found the different story threads hard to pick up initially and I also struggled with the regular changes between first and third-person perspective. However by mid-way through Chapter 2 the   flow of the story established itself for me and it’s a more than interesting one. The official synopsis covers it pretty nicely:

Feels like falling introduces readers to the surreal and bizarrely captivating world of Diskordia, A place where thought, dream and reality are interchangeable concepts; where the rich and powerful buy and sell emotions and minds like stock; where just beneath the surface of our consciousness lie terrible and fantastic beings who could destroy the world utterly if they were to ever emerge from its depths.

Exploring the vastness of this psychedelic everscape is sardonic youth Jackal Black; a man who is abruptly ripped from his unfulfilling existence and exposed to the true nature of the world he thought he knew.  Now Jackal must decide his place in it all lest he remain a helpless leaf blowing in the winds of chaos. Hero or villain, victim or victimizer, Conqueror or crushed insect, the nature of his very identity is up to him.

There’s some great pages of prose to flesh out the world even further, although the story stands up well enough if you want to skip those initially.

Diskordia_vol_1_pdf__page_99_of_356_Onto the art: it is nothing short of stunning. As you’ll see from the couple of examples in this post, this is a story set in dimensions that free things up nicely to create some surreal landscapes and situations. Diskordia‘s creator Rivenis (Andrew Blackman) has some superb art chops and it’s that in particular that’s kept me interested in a big way. I’d personally love to see some prints of some of the pages, they’d be brilliant to hang on the wall.

If you like dark fantasy, great art or both, this is a series worth immersing yourself in. Here’s where to buy issues of Diskordia and a trade is on its way in coming weeks collecting issues 1-9.

8/10

50-Word Review: Deadly Class #10

Releases___Deadly_Class__10___Image_ComicsI don’t read comics for laughs, expecially Deadly Class. Issue #10 keeps a frenetic pace, but still manages to add a scene that had me laughing big time. It’s not all laughs though and again I’m hanging for the next instalment.

More than a must-read.

9.5/10

50-Word Review: Star Wars #1

starwars-issue1Huge expectations surrounded this series re-launch and to a large extent they are met. Set between A New Hope and Empire Strikes Back, Aaron’s story deftly recreates the atmospherics of those movies whilst providing a new and interesting storyline. Cassaday’s art also ensures this series is a keeper.

9/10

Review: I Sell Comics Podcast

iTunesI Sell Comics is a podcast that shouldn’t work. It has two guys on it who’d be the first to admit that they’re not wordsmiths or polished presenters. There’s enough background noise at times to rival a busy supermarket. There’s pauses, long tangents and guests with awkwardly delayed introductions. Hell, there’s even a lot of cliquey / boy’s club stuff that should alienate a whole bunch of people. But I love this podcast.

I Sell Comics works well for a very obvious and powerful reason: anyone that’s watched more than a couple episodes of Comic Book Men will feel like they know these two guys. They’re the more passive of the four on the TV show (or at least their show personas are) and their likeability translates well to the podcast. Mike Zapcic’s knowledge of pop culture from the ’70s to now is the glue that holds things together, although Ming Chen’s self-effacing manner doesn’t hurt either.

I’ve mentioned the weaknesses of the podcast in the first paragraph, but after listening to a whole bunch of episodes those issues are still endearing rather than grating. My only real concern is that after nearly 160 episodes the casual chat we witness could merge into a ‘going through the motions’ exercise. Some have argued that point has already been reached but for mine the line hasn’t been crossed and hopefully won’t be. As a podcaster myself I tend to be forgiving of production issues given the amount I’m responsible for myself. Even taking that into account, the idiosyncrasies of I Sell Comics are more often than not beneficial. If you’re a fan of the TV show then go have a listen. If you haven’t seen Comic Book Men then there’s probably still enough in each show to keep you engaged although a fair proportion of the chat may not make as much sense.

9/10 *

* Disclosure: I may or may not have emailed The Secret Stash pitching that I be allowed to open a Secret Stash Oz. For some reason I’ve received no reply – who’d have thought??

IDW Releases Disney Monthly Titles

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Pree release below in full. I can see this going starkly one way or the other – they’ll sell gangbusters or flop spectacularly based on the remaining level of public interest in these characters. I like that the legacy numbering will be maintained inside the issues at least. The Artist’s edition will be interesting to see.
IDW Debuts Collection of Disney Comics 
Starting This April
Multi-tiered Publishing Plan Brings Classic Characters 
To New Audiences

San Diego, CA (January 22, 2015) – IDW Publishing is proud to announce that they will debut a new collection of Disney Comics beginning in March 2015 with the publication of Don Rosa’s Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck Artist’s Edition, followed by four extra-length comic series launches in April, May, June, and July.

April sees the debut of Uncle Scrooge #1, which will feature the best tales from creators around the world starring the iconic tycoon adventurer. Donald Duck #1 launches in May, Mickey Mouse #1 in June, and in July, Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories will maintain the original numbering and launch with #721 as the first IDW issue.

“The chance to bring Disney comics to fans, both old and new, is a fantastic opportunity,” said IDW editor Sarah Gaydos. “We cannot wait to get these into the hands of readers!”

All four premiere issues will offer 48 pages of content for $3.99, with subsequent issues offering 40 pages per issue for that same cover price.

“It’s the best bargain in the business,” said IDW archival editor David Gerstein. “No wonder it’s attracted Scrooge McDuck! And we’ll be attracting a big following, too—with stories by epic talents like Romano Scarpa, Daan Jippes, Casty, Giorgio Cavazzano, and Al Taliaferro.”

Each issue will feature two regular covers, as well as a unique cover that places the characters in different environments that feature theme park attractions—including April’s Adventureland-themed cover—and other very familiar settings and costumes. If you aren’t already an avid collector, you will be! Some examples of what fans can expect to see are:

April 2015 – Adventureland

  • Uncle Scrooge #1 (48p)

May 2015  Tomorrowland

  • Uncle Scrooge #2 (40p)
  • Donald Duck #1 (48p)

June 2015 – So special we cannot tell you yet!

  • Uncle Scrooge #3 (40p)
  • Donald Duck #2 (40p)
  • Mickey Mouse #1 (48p)

July 2015 – Fantasyland

  • Uncle Scrooge #4 (40p)
  • Donald Duck #3 (40p)
  • Mickey Mouse #2 (40p)
  • Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories #721 (48p)

August 2015 – EPCOT Center

  • Uncle Scrooge #5 (40p)
  • Donald Duck #4 (40p)
  • Mickey Mouse #3 (40p)
  • Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories #722 (40p)
  • Uncle Scrooge TPB, Vol. 1

September 2015 – Frontierland

  • Uncle Scrooge #6 (40p)
  • Donald Duck #5 (40p)
  • Mickey Mouse #4 (40p)
  • Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories #723 (40p)
  • Mickey Mouse TPB, Vol. 1

October 2015 – Haunted Mansion

  • Uncle Scrooge #7 (40p)
  • Donald Duck #6 (40p)
  • Mickey Mouse #5 (40p)
  • Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories #724 (40p)
  • Donald Duck TPB, Vol. 1

November 2015 – Toontown

  • Uncle Scrooge #8 (40p)
  • Donald Duck #7 (40p)
  • Mickey Mouse #6 (40p)
  • Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories #725 (40p)
  • Uncle Scrooge TPB, Vol. 2
  • Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories TPB, Vol. 1

December 2015 – Top Secret!

  • Uncle Scrooge #9 (40p)
  • Donald Duck #8 (40p)
  • Mickey Mouse #7 (40p)
  • Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories #726 (40p)
  • Mickey Mouse TPB Vol 2

The new IDW titles including Donald, Mickey, and Scrooge will be #1s, but will continue their classic legacy number inside the issues.

In addition to the monthly comics released in print, IDW will also be bringing Disney Comics into new territories with Micro Comic Fun Packs, and subsequent Artist’s Editions, too. Details on titles and release schedules will follow.

Why Marvel’s Secret Wars Leaves Me Cold

Marvel_com__The_Official_Site___Iron_Man__Spider-Man__Hulk__X-Men__Wolverine_and_the_heroes_of_the_Marvel_Universe_Comics__News__Movies_and_Video_Games___Marvel_comFirst, the usual disclaimer: I’m a Marvel Comics reader and collector for 35+ years, with no particular axe to grind. Now onto business:

Today Marvel’s head comic honchos Axel Alonso and Tom Brevoort unveiled a future, universe-wide event called Secret Wars, which unless I’m missing some key history is the third Secret Wars event in Marvel’s history.

Which is why I’m feeling pretty cynical about the whole thing from the get-go. I can’t blame Marvel of wanting to reset some things (although they’ve claimed this event isn’t a reboot, which is as believable as them saying they’ll retire the X-Men forever), but it’s been done before. Twice.

The thing is, I actually don’t have an issue with repeating a successful event – and I don’t doubt this latest Secret Wars will be a success, at least commercially.  It’s that I’d nearly bank my whole Marvel collection on the fact that it’ll also happen again. Put Secret Wars 4 in your diary folks – say, 2017 or 2018? That’s what leaves me cold: this is just another small stepping stone in an endless road of ‘universe-changing!!’ events.

So there you have it, the old guy who’s seen too much is telling the new kids to get off his lawn. Except that us old people are a fairly hefty chunk of the people who buy Marvel stuff month after month. And I for one am buying less and can’t see that changing.

All that said, here’s three things that would get this old whiner back on board in a big way:

1. Provide some sort of commitment to a title’s longevity. I’m seeing the ever-growing cynicism towards the constant ending of titles, with new number one issues a month or three later. Marvel needs to, and is, making money, but there are ways of refreshing titles that treat readers less as idiot money machines than the constant series re-launches. If post-Secret Wars there were some sort of commitment to series longevity, I’d be impressed. If a title does need to be cancelled, that’s reasonable, just don’t insult me by re-launching it a month or two later.

2. Reduce the cross-overs. I find cross-overs have an inverse relationship with story quality, so I’m hoping that once Secret Wars is done that maybe there’ll be a little less of it happening. Which is of course a naive thought given the commercial imperatives for cross-overs.

3. A final and least likely to be implemented request: pull off some good licensed title integrations in the new merged universe. If ROM for example is now part of the main universe ongoing, I’m a happy man (yes I’m easily pleased like that). Hell, throw in The Micronauts as well!

Now it’s over to you: does the Secret Wars announcement excite the hell out of you, leave you cold like me or put you somewhere in-between? Would love to hear your thoughts.

Setting Up Your Comics In Filing Cabinets

A big thanks to Jeff Siegrist for allowing us to re-post his great pics and pictures on setting up a comic collection in legal-sized filing cabinets. This is a topic close to my heart as I transitioned my collection to some lateral filing cabinets and love having them set up that way. Here’s Jeff’s simple and effective way to get your own comic collection into filing cabinets:

 

Prepping my new filing cabinets for comic books and I just thought I’d share my way of setting them up. All you need is a legal size filing cabinet and poster board. After cleaning them up I set the divider (assuming you get one with a divider) towards the back, but the important is I leave it in:

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About 2 clicks from the furthest back position works well. Without the divider the comics all the way against the back are difficult to get out and could get damaged.

My second step (pic #2 below) isn’t necessary, but I guess I’m just OCD. I measure and cut a piece of poster board to go in the center channel so that everything is level. This time I found poster board with a grid on it, much easier for uniform cutting:

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Next I cut a divider to go down the middle of the drawer so that the 2 rows of comics don’t start merging. I like to make it 6 inches high and make sure it’s snug, then I secure it with masking tape(pic #3 below). I mock up a few comic books to make sure the divider is centered and perpendicular with the bottom of the drawer:

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The next step is the fun one, fill the drawers with all your comics(pic #4 below), 2 rows per drawer and finally use labels to separate your comics however you’d like. I use printable labels attached to the top of back boards(pic #5). It looks good and the standard dividers are just a touch too tall for the drawers:

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Five Good Comics Groups On Facebook

_1__COMIC_BOOK_COLLECTINGFacebook has lots of flaws, but one thing I do like about it is its groups feature. And for comics fans there’s a lot of good groups on there to get your teeth into. Here’s five I particularly like:

1. Comic Book Collecting

This is a big international group with  more than 26 thousand members. This means lots of content to browse and a team of active moderators keeps the quality high. Recommended.

2. Comic Readers Australia / New Zealand

This is a new group devoted to comics discussion by Aussies and New Zealanders. It’s early days so jump in and help get the community happening.

3. Buy / Sell / Swap Comics Australia

With more than 800 members, this group has regular enough posts to interest most buyers and to gain some interest for those trying to offload a comic or ten.

4. Australian Comic Collectors Society

A smaller group but very friendly. Good discussions on a range of collecting topics including local collecting supplies and grading.

5. The Comics Herald

Ok this is nothing but gratuitous spam but we have our own humble little Facebook group. It’s where you’ll get updates on our latest stories although any discussion is more than welcome. We of course appreciate every like of the page as it helps get our stories out there.

Post your own Facebook group suggestions below – comics-related of course.

Weirdest Avengers Line-Up Ever

Whilst trawling Ebay drooling over some Marvel figurines, I stumbled across the weirdest Avengers line-up ever (click on the pic for full size):

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Captain America looks like he’s realised he’s now in a sham team.

Shame they didn’t add Spawn or Wonder Woman in for good measure…