Two guys talking about comic books, sports, movies, TV shows and the numerous other pastimes that make us Gentlemen of Leisure.

Friday, April 18, 2014

X-amining X-Factor #29

"Fame!"
June 1988

In a Nutshell 
Infectia attacks as Ship moves out to sea. 

Writer: Louise Simonson
Penciler: Walt Simonson
Inker: Bob Wiacek
Letterer: Joe Rosen
Colorist: Petra Scotese
Editor: Bob Harras
Editor-in-Chief: Tom DeFalco

Plot
At her apartment, Infectia watches in frustration as one of the men she's mutated burns out his power and dies, forcing her to make another. Later, X-Factor holds a press conference to announce the removal of Ship from the shoreline. In the process, the pier on which the media has gathered collapses, and X-Factor, along with Ship, is forced to rescue the reporters from the water. Watching the press conference at a bar, Infectia picks up another unsuspecting man. Back at the press conference, an increasingly-irate Cyclops excuses himself, followed by Marvel Girl, leaving Iceman to continue talking to the reporters as Beast and Trish Tilby reconnect. Meanwhile, Infectia brings her dupe back to her apartment, where she kisses him, her mutant power transforming him into a monster. Back at the ship, Cyclops and Marvel Girl prepare to move Ship out over the ocean as Infectia, along with three transformed men, watch from a nearby rooftop.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

X-amining New Mutants #64

"Instant Replay!"
June 1988

In a Nutshell
The New Mutants bury Doug Ramsey. 

Writer: Louise Simonson
Penciler: Bret Blevins
Inker: Terry Austin 
Letterer: Tom Orzechowski
Colorist: Glynis Oliver
Editor: Ann Nocenti
Editor-in-Chief: Tom DeFalco

Plot
In the Danger Room, Rahne replays the events surrounding Doug's death, only this time, she manages to prevent his death. Just then, Roberto interrupts, urging Rahne to get some sleep before Doug's visitation. Upstairs, Illyana watches the footage of the X-Men dying on a loop, while Dani and Warlock watch Night of the Living Dead. The next day, the students, as well as Magneto, attend Doug's visitation, though the site of his body upsets Rahne, and the notion that Doug will be buried away from light and sun forever causes Warlock to freak out. That evening, Warlock sneaks into the funeral room and attempts to wake up Doug. Remembering the time Doug helped revive Warlock by giving him some of his life energy, Warlock tries to the do the same. When Doug doesn't revive, Warlock concludes Doug has forgotten what it feels like to be alive, and determines to show him how much everyone misses him in order to get Doug to take Warlock's life energy.  

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

X-amining Uncanny X-Men #230

"'Twas the Night..."
June 1988

In a Nutshell 
The X-Men return the Reavers stolen loot. 

Writer: Chris Claremont
Penciler: Marc Silvestri
Inker: Joe Rubinstein
Letterer: Tom Orzechowski
Colorist: Glynis Oliver
Editor: Ann Nocenti
Editor-in-Chief: Tom DeFalco

Plot
In their new Australian home, the X-Men train, with Madelyne tracking their actions via the town's computer system. As their exercise completes, Madelyne swears to track down the Marauders and make them pay for stealing her baby. Elsewhere in the town, Longshot is drawn through some tunnels by strange voices and discovers the Reavers' vault, containing all the loot they'd stolen through the years. His psychometric abilities making all the objects in the room come alive like ghosts and tell their stories, he is overwhelmed and falls unconscious. Days later, the X-Men attempt to clean up the mess left behind by the Reavers, while Rogue brings Gateway a picnic lunch. Shortly thereafter, Longshot awakens, telling the X-Men they need to return the objects stolen by the Reavers to their rightful owners as best they can.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Game of Thrones 4x02: The Lion and the Rose



Opening Credits Map
King’s Landing -> Dragonstone -> Dreadfort -> Winterfell -> The Wall -> Meereen

Dreadfort
Before we get to the fun part we’ll start at Dreadfort. Roose Bolton’s bastard son Ramsay Snow is playing his version the most dangerous game. Theon, er, Reek is now free but completely brainwashed to serve Ramsay. I was thankful for the lack of torture but seeing a presumably innocent young girl get hunted and killed wasn't much better.

I don't really remember the girl who was with Ramsay. Her name is apparently Myranda and she wants to be the fairest one of all. That’s bad news for any girls better looking than her but is presumably good news for the woman who is just slightly less attractive than Myranda. I imagine being the second best looking woman in town can have its advantages.

Anyway, Roose Bolton shows up and he apparently hasn't spent much time with Ramsay because he’s surprised at and none too pleased about what Ramsay did to Theon. Theon had trade value to Balon Greyjoy but Reek does not. Roose’s mood improves when Reek has information regarding the lives of Bran and Rickon Stark and where they’re most likely headed. So Ramsay is off to the Wall. Let’s hope Jon Snow is wearing a codpiece...or is willing to commit more fully to the oath of the Night's Watch.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Saturday Night Live: Seth Rogen & Ed Sheerhan


A bit of a Jekyll & Hyde episode, with the first half consistently strong while the second half was much more inconsistent. A weak Weekend Update (which has, unfortunately, consistently been the case of late) signaled the transition, and while what followed it wasn't, with one exception, completely terrible, the back end sketches weren't as reliably funny as the pre-Update ones. Seth Rogen was fine, doing his usual "confused straight man" and "loud angry outbursts" routines, and the episode as a whole continued this little post-spring break "good enough" role the show has been on. 

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Last Week in Pop Culture #26

Around the Web 
One new review from me at Sound on Sight, for Nightcrawler #1, possibly the best new Chris Claremont comic I've read in years.

Also, and far more importantly, Monday sees the launch of the much-teased Saved by the Bell Reviewed podcast, co-hosted by me and Dr. Bitz, as well as Portland cartoonists Carolyn Main and Ryan Alexander-Tanner (Ryan, the driving force behind this project, is of course the mad genius behind the wonderful Full House Reviewed blog as well). You'll be able to download the first episode on Monday from our Tumblr site, and if you haven't already, be sure to like our Facebook page and follow the show on Twitter @sbtb_reviewed.

(And, as long as I'm asking you to like Facebook pages, if you enjoy my writing for Sound on Sight, then be sure to like their Facebook page as well).

Finally, if you're heading out to the comic shop this weekend or poking around on the newly-acquired-by-Amazon Comixology, check out Shutter #1 from Image Comics. It's about a futuristic female Indiana Jones, and features a backup story written and drawn by Ryan. 

Captain America: The Winter Soldier


A really solid follow-up to the first film (which I think is a bit underrated these days), which made the most of its 70s conspiracy thriller vibe and did an effective job of servicing everyone in its rather large cast (this was probably the best Black Widow film yet, right?). If anything, the titular Winter Soldier was the most marginalized element of the movie - there wasn't much of a reason for him to be the one leading the Hydra/SHIELD strike team other than his connection to Cap, and the real impact of that seems to have been left for a future film.  

Friday, April 11, 2014

X-amining X-Factor #28

"Countdown!"
May 1988

In a Nutshell 
X-Factor battles Apocalypse's ship. 

Plot/Scripter: Louise Simonson
Plot/Penciler: Walt Simonson
Inker: Bob Wiacek
Letterer: Joe Rosen
Colorist: Petra Scotese
Editor: Bob Harras
Editor-in-Chief: Tom DeFalco

Plot
On the Hudson River, Apocalypse's ship suddenly smashes into a tugboat. Inside the ship, X-Factor's wards feel the impact, but then then the floor suddenly opens up beneath them. Marvel Girl and Iceman, meanwhile, race outside the ship to investigate the impact, with Iceman freezing Beast's feet in place to ensure he doesn't risk his remaining intelligence helping them. Outside, they rescue the crew of the tugboat, but are then attacked by the ship. At the airport, waiting to fly out in search of his son, Scott hears a news report on the melee, and rushes back to help. Inside the ship, the kids are dropped into individual cells, but Artie bounces free. After Boom-Boom frees everyone else, they follow Artie's mental pictures deeper into the ship. Outside, Marvel Girl and Iceman are about to be overwhelmed when Beast breaks free and intervenes, followed by the arrival of Cyclops.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

X-amining New Mutants #63

"Redemption"
May 1988

In a Nutshell
An untold tale of Magik (sort of). 

Plot: Chris Claremont
Script: Louise Simonson
Artists: Bo Hampton & Josef Rubinstein
Letterer: Tom Orzechowski
Colorist: Nel Yomtov
Editor: Ann Nocenti
Editor-in-Chief: Tom DeFalco

Plot
At the X-Mansion, Illyana tells Kitty how she acquired the spacesuit hanging in her closet. When Warlock first landed on Earth and infected Illyana with the Transmode virus, she and Lockheed teleported to Limbo. Once there, she cast a spell to cure herself of the virus, but passed out when she tried to return home. Waking up back at the mansion, she was confronted by the X-Men all of whom, including Kitty and Colossus, didn't recognize her. Sneaking around with Lockheed, she discovered she was on a spaceship, with the group's "Professor X" a Brood who had created clones of the X-Men to use as host bodies. Donning the spacesuit and weaponry of one of the ship's deceased crewmen, Illyana revealed the truth to the X-Men clones, and together they defeated the Brood. Illyana then teleported the clones to Limbo, curing them of their Brood infection, then sent them back to the spaceship to guard its cryogenically frozen passengers. As her story ends, Illyana wakes up, the conversation with Kitty having been a dream. Taking it as a sign, she realizes that while her magic can't bring back the X-Men, she can use it to kill the monster responsible for their death: Forge. 

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

X-amining Uncanny X-Men #229

"Down Under"
May 1988

In a Nutshell 
The X-Men relocate to Australia and fight some cyborgs (as you do). 

Writer: Chris Claremont
Penciler: Marc Silvestri
Inker: Dan Green
Letterer: Tom Orzechowski
Colorist: Glynis Oliver
Editor: Ann Nocenti
Editor-in-Chief: Tom DeFalco

Plot
In Singapore, the Hoan International Bank is suddenly attacked by the Reavers, a group of cybernetic criminals. After looting the vault and slaughtering most of the people in the bank, they take Jessan Hoan captive, impressed by her guts and financial accumen, and return to the Australian town that serves as their headquarters via the teleportation abilities of a mute mutant named Gateway. As the rest of the Reavers celebrate their latest acquisitions, Pretty Boy begins brainwashing Hoan in order to remove her scruples and make her a Reaver. Just then, the X-Men attack the town, with Longshot and Dazzler interrupting Hoan's reprogramming as the rest of the X-Men take apart the Reavers. During the melee, Pretty Boy, Skullbuster and Bonebreaker manage to escape, telling Gateway they'll release him from his servitude if he teleports them to safety.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Game of Thrones 4x01: Two Swords



Well, for those of you that read The Walking Dead reviews are aware that Teebore had overextended himself and resorted to caffeine pills which ended in disastrous consequences. As a result, I took over reviewing some shows for him. One of those shows will be Game of Thrones. I will be keeping his format for the review for the most part because, well, it's easier than coming up with my own format.

Now, let it be known that Teebore is more perceptive, intelligent and drinks less than me so I have no doubt that my reviews will lack some of the smartiness you're used to. But I'm doing my best and, really, isn't that all that matters? (The answer is no. No, that isn't all that matters.)

Anyway, on with the review!