IGW unleashes a tirade against Sean McKeever! Plus News, Comic Reviews and More!
Welcome to a weekly column summarizing the good, the bad and the ugly that occurred throughout the week in comics. With fifty billion websites covering all the minutia of the comic industry and dozens of comics hitting the shelves, it's about time that someone has the stones to take it all in and regurgitate it like a mother bird to her chicks. Idiot's Guide Weekly will cover pertinent news, the best and worst comics of the week, and anything else worth mentioning in a jovial and mocking manner. So enjoy it while it's fresh: Idiot's Guide Weekly aims to please.
Top News Story of the Week: An analysis of February's sales revealed a mixed bag for the comic book industry. On the positive side, sales were up significantly from last month, with a 20% increase in overall sales. Also, total sales of monthly issues and trades were up about 1% from last year, which indicates positive movement, especially when factoring in that comic book prices are lower last year. Also, the first volume of Morning Glories, written by Nick "Patron Saint of Comic Book Speculators" Spencer was the second highest ordered trade.
However, on the negative side, the top comic of the month, Green Lantern #62, only sold an estimated 75,000 copies. When all is said and done with reorders and whatnot, there's a very good chance that the top-selling comic won't hit six figures. That's a sobering thought that indicates a couple of things. One, it seems to indicate that the fan base is shrinking or is at least buying less comics. This isn't exactly shocking news due to the recession and rising gas prices, but it does stress the importance of finding ways to expand the fan base and market comic books outside of comic book stores.
Jeff Smith's RASL has been optioned for a movie. Jeff Smith actually used to work for the same bookstore I managed when he was in college. My old boss, who hired him, told me that he would yell at Smith because he constantly doodled stupid cartoons when working at the front register. Too bad my boss didn't confiscate those cartoons, they're probably worth a ton of cash now.
Pornsak Pichetshote is now a comic book writer. For those of you who were unaware, he was an editor at Vertigo before the recent personnel changes. While many on the blogosphere (myself included) decried Pichenshote's supposed ouster as a sign that Vertigo was on the path to ruin, DC was keeping his new role quiet as to not spoil his first project, a Flashpoint tie-in. Now that the cat's out of the bag, I wonder how many people will concede that this was a move designed to keep talent at DC as opposed to drive it away?
An Idiot's Guide Call-Out: Sean McKeever
To many on the Internets, Sean McKeever is known as the Eisner Award-winning writer behind such critically acclaimed work such as Gravity, Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane, and Countdown to Final Crisis. However, it's been hinted that there's a dark side to Old Man McKeever, that behind his wrinkly old man face as a deep, ancient evil. And those hints would be right. For the first time, Sean McKeever's dastardly and despicable deeds are being brought to light.
I first met Sean McKeever at a comic book store during a signing when he was munching on something that looked a turkey leg and getting the grease all over the comics he was supposed to sign. When pressed for an answer, McKeever finally admitted that he was enjoying a Wisconsin classic, fried orphaned baby legs. He proceeded to tell me how he would sneak into local orphanages and steal babies out of their cribs, skewering him with a cane as he collected him. Although I was terrified of his eating habits (he also enjoys freshly pulled tongue tacos at a local Mexican joint called El Cannibalestes), I figured that they were normal for comic book writers. After all, it's impossible to look at a picture of Alan Moore without at least wondering if he's ever eaten human flesh.
This was the beginning of an arduous, abusive friendship between McKeever and I. He forced me, at gunpoint, to purchase and read Countdown, all the while cackling that it really had nothing to do with Final Crisis. Another time, he offered to take me to see a movie because he had free tickets. That movie was Spider-Man 3, which still haunts me in my nightmares. I remember him evilly chortling during the dance scene and telling me that it would take a deal with the devil to forget cinematography as awful as that.
McKeever is a hater of happiness and unicorns. He is widely considered to be a leech on society and has been banned from fourteen states and all of Canada. McKeever spends his days trolling people's status messages on facebook while a group of monkeys chained to typewriters completes his various scripts. McKeever is the man who turned the beloved television character Wonder Dog into a vicious hellhound who grew stronger with every death of an innocent soul. He's an awful human being. I highly encourage all of you to buy three copies of his latest book Onslaught Unleashed. Why three copies? So you can piss on one, burn the second and sell the third on eBay for an inflated price when McKeever's evil heart gives out in the next two years.
So Sean McKeever, I'm calling you out. You are a terrible awful human being. Next time, don't skip out on my fiancee's birthday party because you don't want to compete for parking with roid-addled bodybuilders. And stop hitting on her on Facebook!
An Idiot's Guide Contest: The Fear Itself Death Pool
This one is a pretty simple game. With Marvel's announcement that they'd be killing off a character per quarter and Matt Fraction's hint that the announcement curiously lines up with Fear Itself, which will be a three quarter event, Idiot's Guide wants to know: which character do you think will be the first to bite it in the coming months? Any Marvel character currently alive will be accepted as a potential answer. In order to play, just say (either in the thread, via PM or by email) which character do you think will die in Fear Itself and say how that character will die. IGW will accept submissions through 3/15/2011, the day before the Fear Itself event begins with Book of the Skull.
The prize will be either 1) a hardcover edition of New Avengers: Breakout signed by David Finch OR a hardcover copy of Superman: Earth One. Winner gets to choose. If no one wins, I get to keep all my comics.
So far, we have about fifteen entries with two weeks left. A lot of good, obscure (and obvious) picks are still left open so if you want to play, just click here and throw your name into the ring.
Newton Watch: Week Four
Newton, the enigmatic Internet troll known to many comic book fans' spam boxes, is mulling an exclusive offer for an ongoing feature here at IGW. Details to follow soon.
The Comics (There Be Spoilers Below!):
Moment of the Week: Blue Beetle is stunningly not dead. (Justice League: Generation Lost #21) I have been vindicated in my mocking of anyone who actually believed that this death was going to stick for more than a couple of issues. Classic bait and switch.
: Venom #1. I'll be more than happy to say it. Best. Venom. Ever. Venom #1 is a great redesign and a bold new direction of a character that's been stuck in the 90's for years. Kudos to Rick Remender and Tony Moore for a great first issue. Comic of the Week
Surprise of the Week: Batman and Robin #21. Tomasi and Gleason really are making this book their own. Gleason, in particular, has taken his art to a whole new level with this issue. It's a shame that they're only going to be around for one arc.
Best Character of the Week: Ultimate Peter Parker (Ultimate Spider-Man 155). I'm glad Bendis had him lose his virginity before he kills Ultimate Spider-Man off.
EDIT: Controversy has arisen over the accuracy of this item. More information can be found here.
Worst Character of the Week: Magneto (X-Men Legacy #246) Magneto drops a bunch of stuff on Rogue to fake her death and scare the other mutants into not getting rambunctious. I'm willing to bet this decision ends up costing him in the long run.
Other comics of note:
Sigil #1: I know it's gotten lackluster reviews, but my fiancée picked it up off the shelf, bought it and read it as soon as she got home. If my fiancée loves it, there must be some redeeming quality to the book.
Batman Incorporated #3: Grant Morrison steals a page out of Ocean's Twelve with Batman "pretending" to be Julia Roberts...or something like that. It wasn't funny then, at it really wasn't funny now.
Booster Gold #42: I'm pretty sure it's becoming a mandate in Booster Gold to make him meet a past/future version of himself in every storyarc.
Superboy #5: I've been to middle school track meets more exciting than the Superboy/Kid Flash race. This series gets more and more boring with every issue.
New Avengers #10: I like the New Old Avengers and am interested to see how they tie into the New New Avengers.
27 #4: Great end to the first set. Can't wait for the next miniseries.
Onslaught Unleashed #2: If you can't find three copies of this book, feel free to piss on, burn and then sell one copy on eBay. I guarantee it'll sell nearly as well.
Cinderella: Fables are Forever #2: Chris Roberson, you brought me a Chiss. You are my new favorite writer.
Hello... (New Characters)
Bunch of random villains in Legion of Super-Villains: I'm surprised none of these characters were named Cannon Fodder. I'll bet that most of them end up dead in the next year.
Goodbye... (Dead Characters)
Micro Lad: Like I said most of the Legion of Super-Villains will probably be dead within a year.
How Many Things did Wolverine (and Family) Stab This Week?
Two. X-23 stabbed a shark and a pirate. Also, Wolverine slashed two nameless lackies in New Avengers #10 but no actual stabbing occurred within the book. Alternate Logan stabbed a table with a knife in X-Men Legacy #246 but that doesn't count either.
Total Stab Count: 2
Everything Else (Musings and whatnot):
There was a shocking lack of stabbings in last week's Wolverine and Hercules comic. Only one stabbing occurred and that was during a flashback.
Last chance to join the Death Pool. Picking closes on Tuesday.
Next week's column may be delayed by C2E2. The Outhouse has some cool plans for the weekend. You should definitely check it out!
Next Week: RASL! Fear Itself! Comics for Kittens! More stuff!
Written or Contributed by: BlueStreak
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About the Author - Christian Hoffer
Christian Hoffer is the exasperated Abbott to the Outhouse's Costello. When he's not yelling at the Newsroom for upsetting readers or complaining to his wife about why the Internet is stupid, he sits in his dingy business office trying to find new ways to make the site earn money. Hoffer is also the only person in history stupid enough to moderate two comic book forums at once.
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