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Riverdale Reviewed by Tuxedo Mark
[December 14, 2018, 04:52:58 pm]

What are you currently watching? by rusty
[December 14, 2018, 11:52:40 am]

What have you done today? by Archiecomicxfan215
[December 13, 2018, 10:41:01 pm]

Library Books That You All Read by BettyReggie
[December 13, 2018, 06:43:04 pm]

What comics have you been reading? by BettyReggie
[December 13, 2018, 06:41:49 pm]

Days we look foward to as Archie Fans. by BettyReggie
[December 12, 2018, 03:58:53 pm]

Features by Oldiesmann
[December 07, 2018, 11:49:38 pm]

Latest Hauls, what did you buy? by BettyReggie
[November 27, 2018, 10:08:42 pm]

Sears/Kmart by SAGG
[November 20, 2018, 06:47:00 am]

New Sabrina comic book miniseries (non-horror) by DeCarlo Rules
[November 16, 2018, 01:28:13 am]

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Refresh History
  • Tuxedo Mark: My review of "Here We Come a Caroling!" from Cheryl Blossom, No. 19: [link]
    December 14, 2018, 04:53:47 pm
  • Tuxedo Mark: My review of "'Ti$ the Sea$on" from Cheryl Blossom, No. 9: [link]
    December 02, 2018, 06:14:22 pm
  • Tuxedo Mark: Thanks. Yeah, we don't know what happened to him. Possibly a stomach problem of some kind.
    November 29, 2018, 08:36:52 am
  • rusty: Sorry for your loss.  7 years is pretty young for a cat.
    November 28, 2018, 11:49:53 pm
  • Tuxedo Mark: R.I.P., my sweet, beloved cat, Misiu (2011-2018). :'(
    November 28, 2018, 08:50:46 am
  • Tuxedo Mark: My review of "The New Archies": "Making of Mr. Righteous": [link]
    November 24, 2018, 03:59:01 pm
  • Vegan Jughead: Happy Thanksgiving, y'all!
    November 22, 2018, 07:30:50 am
  • Tuxedo Mark: My review of "Skateboardin' Blossom" from Cheryl Blossom #26: [link]
    November 18, 2018, 06:22:18 pm
  • Oldiesmann: RIP Stan Lee :( [link]
    November 12, 2018, 02:04:24 pm
  • Tuxedo Mark: My review of "Fashion Emergency" from Cherl Blossom #26: [link]
    November 11, 2018, 07:05:28 pm
  • Tuxedo Mark: Internet outage for nearly 24 hours, but I'm back now. :)
    November 09, 2018, 05:37:49 pm
  • rusty: That is hilarious.
    November 04, 2018, 02:36:07 pm
  • DeCarlo Rules: The funniest thing I've seen all year (and maybe ever)... [link]  :2funny:
    November 04, 2018, 07:12:01 am
  • DeCarlo Rules: It's crazy that ACP hasn't reprinted those 2 issues as a double-size one-shot. Or the lead story in a TP collection of vampire stories (including "Twilite" and others).
    November 04, 2018, 03:21:35 am
  • irishmoxie: That's crazy about those Betty and Veronica issues being worth so much. They're only about 6 years old. I'm pretty sure I have copies of them.
    November 04, 2018, 01:36:00 am
  • DeCarlo Rules: On a relatated note, the real FIRST Vampironica appeared in Larry Welz' underground comic Cherry Poptart #1 [link]. That can be had right now, CGCed at 9.4, at the Buy-It-Now price of $280 on ebay. Although the book had several subsequent printings, only the first printing ($2 cover price) contains the Vampironica story. Much, much scarcer than B&V #261 & 262, but then far fewer people seem to be aware of its existence. It may not be the same Vampironica as the one that appears in her own comic book from ACP, but then you can easily make the argument that neither is the Vampironica from B&V 261-262.
    November 04, 2018, 01:15:09 am
  • rusty: Crazy.  I obviously missed that back then.
    November 03, 2018, 10:06:11 pm
  • DeCarlo Rules: Yes, I mentioned this a while back somewhere around the time Vampironica #1 was first solicted or shipped. I even mentioned it to Dan Parent and told him if he still had copies he should get them CGC'ed.
    November 03, 2018, 04:33:03 pm
  • rusty: Apparently Betty and Veronica #261 and 262 (1987 series) are popular now due to Vampironica.  Somebody actually purchased a copy of #261 for $299 on ebay recently.
    November 03, 2018, 01:41:51 pm
  • archiecomicscollector: I've been watching Chilling Adventures of Sabrina on no Riverdale means more time in Greendale :)
    November 01, 2018, 10:17:35 pm

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Messages - DeCarlo Rules

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General Discussion / Re: What comics have you been reading?
« on: November 30, 2018, 01:59:44 am »
I was disappointed with the new reprint lines since they are essentially 'best of' collections rather than being a complete reprint series.  When  they were announced, I thought that they would be starting a comprehensive reprint line with perhaps Archie and Me #1-10 in volume 1, 11-20 in volume 2 and so on, but I must have misunderstood them somewhere.  I'll just stick to my complete runs of all those titles.  If they had done it the other way, I probably would have purchased them to support the line anyway.  The few books that I don't already have were mostly covered in the Dark Horse Archives, at least for the Archie stories.

I'm convinced it's less a function of "best of" than of "what we have on hand already digitized". If people just scratched their heads wondering why SABRINA THE TEENAGE WITCH Complete Collection v1 was in black & white (the only such "Archie Complete Comics Collection" b&w collection that ACP has produced to date), it's because it was an experiment. That required them to do some actual work in terms of locating older Sabrina stories that hadn't yet been digitized, and the trade-off of the cost of that production work in digitizing previously undigitized stories for the first time was that the whole thing was printed in black & white to save ACP the cost of paying for full-color printing. The same economics applied to the trade paperback collection CHILLING TALES IN SORCERY VOL. 1.

General Discussion / Re: What comics have you been reading?
« on: November 29, 2018, 06:31:36 am »
Wow, when you save them up for a year or more like that, it almost seems like ACP has a full-fledged publishing operation going on, while the reality if you look at the solicitations is more like 1 or 2 (at most 3) floppy format comic books in any given month, 3 or 4 digest titles, and 2 or 3 trade collections.

Recently, I read these -

-- These are the only regular digest titles I'm getting at this point. Recently I picked up a couple of the more recent Giant Comics digest collections, and ARCHIE 1000 PAGE COMICS ROMP, but haven't done more that read a couple hundred pages of the 1000 Page collection.

ARCHIE #700 - Theoretically, I'd say it's an improvement on the original reboot by Waid and Staples, but that doesn't mean I'll be buying it now. I only purchased this one because of the Mike Allred variant cover. It's still about as pointless to me as doing a reboot of Dilbert or Zippy using the same writer and artist.

ARCHIE AND ME TP VOL 01 - Issue 1 has artwork by Harry Lucey; 3 through 9 by Bob Bolling, the balance of the stories are written and drawn by Joe Edwards. It astounds me that this title managed to run for 161 issues. None of the stories are worse than average, but they could have appeared in almost any Archie-centric comic title. Was Mr. Weatherbee, as a character, that big of a draw? Why not Ms. Grundy? Or for that matter, what would have seemed to make much more sense to me (well I thought he was funnier, anyway) would have been Mr. Lodge.
EVERYTHING'S ARCHIE TP VOL 01 - Not as many Archies (the band) stories as you might expect. This one's all over the place in terms of artists, but the latter half of the book is heavy with Al Hartley written-&-drawn stories, which you hardly ever see much of a concentration of in random collections.

On the whole, the "Archie Comics Presents..." series of trade collections seems like a good idea, and I guess it's better than spending the same money on digest issues. It's just that the Archie-centric titles like the above (and the previous trade collections of ARCHIE AT RIVERDALE HIGH and LIFE WITH ARCHIE) don't seem all that distinctive in any way. Like you could have put the same stories into any random issue of World of Archie or Archie Jumbo Comics Digest and nobody would really have noticed that much, apart from the suspicious nature of them obviously being very close in vintage to each other. So once again, ACP continues to zig in mirror-reflection to my zag, frustrating me by not giving me what I really want. Maybe it's because they led off with unusual collections like JUGHEAD'S TIME POLICE and COSMO THE MERRY MARTIAN, which might have given me the impression we'd be seeing a much more eclectic selection, concentrating stories which had been thinly-distributed as reprints through the digests in the past. And now I'm stuck with them working their way through a long list of fairly long-running but otherwise unremarkable titles. **Deep sigh**

For the record, here's my "most wanted" wish list of titles that would fit in this series:

She's JOSIE (from #1, 1963)
THAT WILKIN BOY (from #1, 1969)
The MADHOUSE GLADS (from their 1st appearance in Madhouse Ma-ad #67, into #73-93 of their own title)
Tales Calculated to Drive You BATS (all 8 issues, complete)
Archie's MADHOUSE (from the earliest issues)
BETTY AND ME (from #1, 1965)
REGGIE AND ME (from #19, 1966)
CHERYL BLOSSOM (from the beginning)
JUGHEAD'S FANTASY (#1-3 complete + JUGHEAD'S FOLLY, the 1957 one-shot that served as a prototype)
The New WILBUR (#80-87, by Doyle & DeCarlo, 1958-59, complete)
BETTY'S DIARY (including the AGS one-shot that preceded the regular run)
VERONICA (#1-17, the "Veronica Around the World" issues)

I'd say Sabrina, but they've really already done exactly the collection I want, except that it's in black & white. Now that Sabrina's profile has been raised due to the Netfilx series, let's work on getting a deluxe hardcover edition of the exact same stories in color now, m'kay, ACP?

Just some random older floppies I found in the back issue bins:
THAT WILKIN BOY #11 (Oct-78)
ARCHIE'S T.V. LAUGH-OUT #63 (Dec-78), #67 (Jun-79)
PEP #342 (Oct-78), #345 (Jan-79)
REGGIE AND ME #342 (Dec-77)
LIFE WITH ARCHIE #45 (Jan 66), #85 (May-69), #188 (Dec-77)
JUGHEAD #282 (Nov-78), #285 (Feb-79)

It's gotten to the point where some of the run-of-the-mill issues of Archie titles from the 70s or 80s, if it's a title that doesn't feature B&V, Josie, Sabrina, Bingo Wilkin, or Madhouse Glads (-- those are the ones I'll actually collect) I'll just give it a quick flip-through, and unless I see something out of the ordinary, I won't even bother to read it.

All About Archie / Re: New Sabrina comic book miniseries (non-horror)
« on: November 16, 2018, 01:28:13 am »
Wasn't there a Sabrina one-shot or miniseries announced around two years ago and then cancelled? Is this a resurrection of that?

You're thinking of the one-shot originally solicited for March 2017, which would have been written by Katie Cook (My Little Pony) and Franco (Tiny Titans, Little Archie one-shot), and drawn by Andy Price. The plan was to have three different covers available from artists Sandra Lanz, Adam Hughes, and Paul Renaud. Here's the original solicitation description:
Brand New One-Shot Special! Sabrina is off to college for her first foray into 'the real world.' After years of being protectively home schooled by her aunts, she is ready to experience friends, boys, and parties-but a shocking revelation will rock her world in a way she never expected!

A sample of Andy Price's artwork for that one-shot, and the Adam Hughes cover variant:

The new miniseries by Kelly Thompson (w) and Veronica & Andy Fish (a) is described simply as:
... A new Archie Comics mini-series launching in 2019 that will modernize the classic Sabrina character we all love, sans the Dark Baptism and Satanic imagery of more recent incarnations. Readers will follow Sabrina as she moves to Greendale with her aunts, Hilda and Zelda, and attempts to navigate high school while her magical powers emerge.

Sample character designs by the Fishs for the new miniseries, and a cover image:

It's funny that it took a television (if that's really the right word for Netflix) adaptation of the Archie Horror version of Sabrina to bump-start an updated version of the classic Sabrina premise. I would have thought that would have been the very next thing on the list after the rebooted version of Josie and the Pussycats (if not before) -- not REGGIE & ME (a title which hadn't had a comic book published since 1980). Now, with the success of the Netflix series, it would be incredibly stupid of ACP not to try to capitalize on the Sabrina brand by launching some sort of new product -- it's pretty clear that Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa's priorities lie with RIVERDALE, and not with writing issues of some horror comics that sell a measly few thousand copies each.

So to answer your original question, NO -- no relation to the previous one-shot solicited and cancelled in 2017. Personally, I would have loved to have seen the previously-solicited one-shot. The Andy Price interpretation of Sabrina seems much more in line with "classic Sabrina", while the Fishs' version seems much more "New Riverdale Sabrina" (although not the same version of the character which appeared in Ryan North & Derek Charm's JUGHEAD). I suppose I will read the new version of Sabrina (I'm sure I can borrow a copy), but I'm not particularly excited about it, as compared with the previous Derek Charm and Andy Price interpretations. Visually, the Fishs' version of Sabrina seems barely distinguishable from Robert Hack's ChAoS version -- but that might be a very deliberate decision on ACP's part.

General Comics / Re: Stan Lee has died
« on: November 13, 2018, 11:34:58 am »
There are a few quotes from Stan Lee in The Best of Archie Comics. He also had nothing but high praise for working with Dan DeCarlo.

General Discussion / Re: What comics have you been reading?
« on: November 12, 2018, 08:54:30 am »
I remember debating picking up Exorsisters, but ultimately decided to pass based on the preview.  Since you are recommending it, I will plan on checking the trade out when it eventually is released.  Even if I was collecting it, though, I wouldn't be reading it.  My policy on many new series, especially from Image and smaller companies or miniseries, is to keep the books in a box as they are released and to read the title when it is complete or when four or five issues are out. 

Well, if you are retired I guess it explains how you have so much time to read all those comics.

Given that you're saying you might check out Exorsisters in trade, I wonder (based on your reading habits of waiting months to read 5 issues or so of any given title) why you're not just getting the trade collections of all those other titles to begin with. I mean I can see it where some people just want (theoretically at least, presuming that they can find the time) to read things while they're still "fresh", and not wait on a gap of several months until the trade collection is released, but it seems like by the time you're getting around to those particular issue numbers, the TP collection must already be available or at least imminent within the next month or so. It seems like next to nothing (getting to the real fringe publishers otherwise) that isn't getting that trade collection, almost like clockwork in today's comic publishing world.

For myself, I know there are a few titles where I'd start off buying the individual issues, then for one reason or another, never get around to catching up on the title until the trade collection was out or due out soon. When that happens I just sort of scratch my head and wonder what I was thinking. If I was going to wait that long to read those comics, then why didn't I just wait for the trade in the first place?

General Discussion / Re: What comics have you been reading?
« on: November 12, 2018, 01:42:27 am »
Since I have over 300 Image comics to catch up on, I'm breaking it up a bit.   B-F to start

Wow, that is a lot of titles (considering it's just B through F), Rusty. Do you have (in your head, or can you approximate by some rough figuring) how many different titles (in progress, ongoing or limited series) you're reading at any given time, including all publishers? I mean the things that actually do get published on some sort of semi-regular schedule, not those things that are once-in-a-blue-moon (like for example, the various comic strip reprint series from IDW's Library of American Comics, which are probably no more often than annual at best).

What I really wanted to ask though, is did you not get Ian Boothby and Gisèle Lagacé's new Image series EXORSISTERS? (Begins with an E, right?) If not, you should really check that one out. Twin sisters (but not really) Cate and Kate Harrow are supernatural investigators and as close as can be (spoilers again, not really twins), but totally different in personality. Like Betty and Veronica, or more apropos, like Patty and Cathy Lane in The Patty Duke Show. Fun-filled supernatural situation comedy ensues. I like Gisèle's other stuff with Dave Lumsdon -- Ménage à 3, Eerie Cuties and Magick Chicks (in increasing order of how much I like them) but I feel like Exorsisters has the potential to be even funnier, and it's already off to a great start. I really hope it's an ongoing series from Image and not just a limited series.

[SPOILER: A lot of the covers seem to have this split-image or mirror-reflection motif, and that's a clue about the true nature of the Exorsisters.]

General Discussion / Re: What comics have you been reading?
« on: November 11, 2018, 04:22:06 am »

  Story, art and cover by Joe Musial. King Features Syndicate comic strip characters star in an educational story about nuclear physics (expanded from a 1948 article that appeared in Popular Science magazine).

Mandrake the Magician takes the scientific position, explaining to Dagwood and Blondie the basics of atomic power. Numerous other characters appear as well, including Jiggs and Maggie from Bringing Up Father, the Katzenjammer Kids, Henry, Snuffy Smith, and Popeye, Olive Oyl, and Wimpy. The upper 3/5ths of each page consists of a single comic panel with word balloons, while the bottom 2/5ths of each page contains text elaborating on the idea presented in detail. Page 28 consists of a multiple-choice quiz (18 questions) to test what you've learned by reading (correct answers provided inside back cover).
Back in 2012, the genesis of the special comic, which was published by Harvey Comics and distributed to schools for free, and was also included as an item in A.C. Gilbert Co.'s No. U-238 Atomic Energy Lab Kit in 1950, was explained by the anonymous "Archivist" at the KFS website (
The how and why of atom-splitting was explained many times in many ways, but mostly, a lot of people were confused or unsure about just how that energy was created or what were the prospects for usage. General Leslie Groves, who had lead the Manhattan Project during the War, and now in retirement, was a respected expert on all things atomic. He first developed an idea for presenting the atomic story for laypeople with cartoons, and approached Joe Musial with this concept.

Joe Musial was an all-around utility player for the syndicate. He could write stories, do ghost work on any number of strips and comic books in different styles, even outside the Hearst realm.

As the head of “King Features Educational Division,” he first created an exhibit for the atomic show at the New York Golden Jubilee exhibition in 1948, explaining the workings of atomic power with King Features’ cartoon stars. This led to the comic book version.

General Groves wrote a preface in the finished book, and other contributors included Hearst columnist, Bob Considine, as well as several physicists and a quote from Bernard Baruch.

The most popular strip stars during that era were the Bumsteads, so naturally they would be the leads in the book. The “story” inside was that Blondie and Dagwood, accompanied by the rest of the King characters, attend a public lecture given by Mandrake on just what atoms are made of, how they get pulled apart, and what causes them to detonate.  The Bumsteads  are magically transported to atomic size so they can inspect the various neutrons, protons and electrons doing their stuff up close while a scientific explanation narrates the pages below the cartoons. Though Chic Young’s photo is inserted in the opening of the book, doubtless no one else but Musial drew the illustrations.

The story begins, "THIS BOOK TELLS what an atom is, how it can be split and what happens when it is split. Here, therefore, is a comic book that is different from any you have ever seen." You might think that a comic book such as this produced in 1949 would be viewed in hindsight as hokey, naive and oversimplifing a complex topic, but nothing could be further from the truth. Still as relevant today as it was nearly 70 years ago.

General Discussion / Re: Sears/Kmart
« on: November 11, 2018, 03:48:37 am »
The irony is not lost on me that Sears was at one time, over a century ago, most favorably positioned as THE alternative to brick & mortar retail stores.

The Sears Roebuck & Co. Catalog was indeed the "" of its time, from 1897 to 1993.

General Discussion / Re: What comics have you been reading?
« on: November 09, 2018, 01:30:00 am »
I'm caught up on Dynamite now.

I don't know what to say about Dynamite. I wish they'd give as much attention to the stories and interior artwork as they do to the covers. I buy a fair number of their titles, just based on my liking the characters, but sometimes it seems like I'm just getting them for the covers.

There are some examples of good stuff, where they're at the top of their game (The Shadow: The Death of Margo Lane, Doc Savage: Ring of Fire, Will Eisner's The Spirit: The Corpse Makers, Edgar Rice Burroughs' The Greatest Adventure, Sherlock Holmes, Vampirella: Roses For the Dead, Dawn/Vampirella, and Vampirella (2014, Volume 2, the one written by Nancy Collins). And the recent Sheena was better than expected and the new Elvira: Mistress of the Dark is pretty good so far (my expectations were kind of low at this point, so it's a pleasant surprise). Unfortunately, they just seem to be too few and far between, considering all the titles they put out.

And then there are far too many instances where they're really a letdown: Green Hornet '66 Meets Will Eisner's Spirit (not even the real Spirit), the Gold Key stuff, Bettie Page, that most recent wave of reboots of The Shadow, Green Hornet, Vampirella, and Dejah Thoris, and (turning out to be a big disappointment for me) the long-awaited return of Project Superpowers. Mighty Mouse didn't quite click for me -- I think it was because, while it seemed like a fun spin on the character, the artwork just didn't cut it. They needed someone who could draw the story in a way that would have made it funnier to read. I say that as a guy who absolutely loves what Sholly Fisch is doing every month writing Scooby-Doo Team-Up. Anyway, it always feels like (barring well-known talent) most Dynamite series are going to be a real crap shoot when you pick them up. And then a lot of them are just middling-fair, like Red Sonja/Tarzan (but then I'm not really a Gail Simone fan).

They also publish a bunch of licensed properties that I don't read (Battlestar Galactica, Charlie's Angels, Dresden Files, James Bond, John Wick, Nancy Drew, Red Sonja) that I can't comment on. I'd kind of like to read James Bond, but since they're not doing the movie Bond, I'll wait until they actually adapt one of Fleming's books, or at least do an original story set in continuity in that time period. I can see why they update 007 for movie audiences (which makes it a different character), but to me the real Bond is set during the height of the Cold War, and he's a character of that time.

General Discussion / Re: What comics have you been reading?
« on: November 03, 2018, 04:43:12 pm »
watching things on my phone is not ideal.

I've come to the conclusion that it must be some sort of generational thing, since large numbers of people seem to have absolutely no problem with the idea. That goes for reading comics or e-books, as well. Then again, if a video is not being displayed in its correct aspect ratio it's immediately apparent to me (and annoying to the point where I just can't watch it), but apparently what's annoying to other people that they just can't stand is an area of their screen that isn't being used where nothing but black bars appear.

But that's coming from a guy who has no idea why anyone would want to text on a phone using a tiny keyboard when they could just call (even if it's just to leave a voicemail) or email someone. People not only seem to enjoy but actually prefer texting, though.

General Discussion / Re: What comics have you been reading?
« on: November 01, 2018, 04:02:23 am »
SCOOBY-DOO! TEAM-UP #43 (with The Doom Patrol)
EXORSISTERS #1 - This may be my favorite of Gisele's creator-owned series yet. Cate & Kate Harrow are the Patty & Cathy of supernatural investigators (sort of, but not quite... to explain further would be spoiler-y). BUY IT! READ IT! You won't be sorry!
(#3 in a series of #1s)
(of 4)
  -- The above were the not-so-special examples of DE's 2018 Halloween one-shots. What I want to know is where's the one I was REALLY looking forward to as something special, the ELVIRA HALLOWEEN SPECIAL by Dan Parent and Fernando Ruiz? Fernando had an 8-page backup story in the Bettie Page special, but it wasn't anything to compare with his work on DKD (probably would have been funnier if he wrote it himself, or Dan P did).
MARS ATTACKS #1 (Dynamite 2018) - I was expecting more of a direct continuation of the series as it existed as published by IDW, but this was something different. More alt/indy, and more interesting, I thought.
THREE STOOGES: MONSTERS & MAYHEM #1 (#11 in a series of #1s)
ARCHIE MEETS BATMAN '66 #4 (of 6) - Happy/sad. Happy for what it is, but sad when I think we're only two issues away from the end of what is probably the last Batman '66 series, as well as the last long-form (issue-length stories, as well as the last longer story arc) of classic Archie. Of course there are still the five-page digest stories, but it just isn't the same.

   SLUM WOLF by Tadao Tsuge - "Alternative" Japanese comix, mostly stories from the 1970s.

   STREET FIGHTER II VOL I-III (of 3) by Masaome Kanzaki - Not bad, but you could tell it was an older manga by the limited number of SF characters.

   PLUS-SIZED ELF VOL 01 by Synecdoche - No idea why I picked this up (must have been the cover), but it was fun. I'll read more volumes unless it becomes boring.

   NURSE HITOMI'S MONSTER INFIRMARY VOL 08 by Shake-O - Haven't really gotten into the last couple of volumes as much as the earlier ones. I wish the stories would go back to focusing on Nurse Hitomi more. Also, the student cast is large and varied, and it's hard to remember everything about all the characters, so there should be a little two-page "cast" intro for each volume, at least reminding us what was already known about the characters spotlighted in this volume. The other thing was the whole volume took place on a class camping trip outside the school, and was a sort-of parody of horror/slasher movies (not really my thing, but whatever). One amusing bit had a recognizably-drawn Danny Trejo (from Machete, and a bunch of other Robert Rodriguez movies) in a guest-starring role.

   MOB PSYCHO 100 TP VOL 01 by ONE - Not what one would expect from the title, but very similar in premise to The Disastrous Life of Saiki K., although told in a style that has common points with ONE's One-Punch Man.

   PRISON SCHOOL TP VOL 03 (of 10) by Akira Hiramoto - Never fails to make me chuckle out loud. There are aspects of this that remind me of Gisele's Menage A 3, as far as the sex comedy goes. The plot, however, is as intricately constructed as that of Death Note, but with all sorts of references to R-rated women-in-prison exploitation flicks (with role reversal) and even war movies like The Great Escape or Stalag 17. Obviously there's a level where the entire situation is just too over-the-top to be believable, but on the other hand, like the fantasy aspects of Death Note, if you accept those premises as given, within its own context there's a level of realism to at least some of the characters. We don't get much in the way of insight into the motivations or thoughts of the (all-girl) Shadow Student Council (Underground Student Council in the anime), but then again, the story isn't from their POV, it's from the POV of the five male "prison inmates" of the school. The Shadow Student Council are the antagonists, so you don't get a balanced perspective on things from both sexes. Oddly enough, at the heart of this is a love story (and maybe more than one).

   FRANKENSTEIN: JUNJI ITO'S STORY COLLECTION HC - It's a fairly straightforward adaptation of Mary Shelley's novel right up to the point where Frankenstein strikes a bargain with his creation to make a mate for him. Then things take an unexpected diversion from the novel, with Henry Clerval discovering Frankenstein's secret and aiding him in his creation of The Bride. When Victor is unable to obtain a useable female head in good condition, the monster provides one himself -- the guillotined head of Justine Moritz, unjustly convicted of the murder of young William Frankenstein (apparently in Switzerland at this time, it's possible to convict a murder suspect on mere circumstantial evidence, a weakness of Shelley's novel). In the novel, Justine was hanged, not guillotined, after being convicted, and Frankenstein in fact destroys the body of the monster's mate before ever bringing her to life. Here, as in Universal's The Bride of Frankenstein, there is a much more elaborate scene (with an argument from Henry Clerval that it's Frankenstein's duty to restore Justine to life -- even though earlier in the story it's made clear that Frankenstein is somehow creating the brain of the creature himself, not merely restoring a dead brain to working condition). The end result is the same, with the monster feeling himself betrayed by Frankenstein and vowing his vengeance when (as in Universal's film) he's rejected by his bride-to-be and she tries to kill him. Still, the difference from the book here is that Frankenstein acts in good faith to fulfill his end of the agreement... but he can't be held responsible when the mate he creates rejects the original monster (somehow the monster doesn't see it that way, even though he's in most respects reasonable). The adaptation takes up about half the book, with the balance a collection of modern horror stories focusing on junior high school student Oshikiri.

General Discussion / Re: What are you currently watching?
« on: November 01, 2018, 02:19:44 am »
I was just checking YouTube, and I can see there's quite a bit of buzz there about the Netflix Sabrina series, so I'll probably start there, since most of the videos are short and of course it's free.

I might need to be a little careful to avoid too many spoilers, so I'll have to think about that a little bit before deciding which YouTube reviews/comments I'll decide to watch.

General Discussion / Re: What are you currently watching?
« on: October 31, 2018, 12:33:57 pm »
Netflix gives you a free month if you sign up as a trial.  Even though I already did that once a couple of years ago, they gave me another free month so if you want to try Sabrina, it wouldn't cost you anything. 

As far as Riverdale, I really thought two seasons was enough and I was surprised when it was renewed for a third season.  I'm pretty sure I'll get around to checking out season 3 eventually but I keep reading snippets of reviews from people who liked the first two seasons suggesting that season 3 is not very good.  I don't usually implicitly trust other peoples opinions on such things since I have a high tolerance for cheese (which is why I probably was fine with seasons 1 and 2), but I think I read something about a cult leader or something and I don't know why but that's a bridge too far for me.  Again, I'll probably get bored enough to check it out eventually but I'm good for now. 

Also, a co-worker of mine who gave up on Riverdale halfway through season 2 said she was going to watch Sabrina (she's not an Archie Comics fan) and I always enjoy things more when I have someone to debrief with after it's over.  She's not as far along with Sabrina but she's enjoying it.  I finished it this morning and loved the ending, especially because it does have roots in MLJ history.  The penultimate episode (number 9 of 10) really affected me, but folks who watch and enjoy horror would probably find it pretty tame. 

If you check it out, I'll look forward to your review!!

This is all very interesting. I'd give your post a double-like if I could. I watch much less television (which no longer really seems like the appropriate description anymore, if you know what I mean) than the average person. Probably because I always have piles and piles of comics (the floppy kind as well as collected editions, and American comics as well as Japanese manga) on my list of things to read every week -- and I've gotten WAY behind in the last few weeks as it is. Still, I try to watch a few things, but at this point it's almost exclusively anime. I have an extensive list of anime series I want to watch (most are versions of manga I've read), and it takes me quite a while to work my way through those.

Like I started watching the anime version of PLANETES (which I had recently read already in total as manga), but found it to be quite different and not as good (so far) in my opinion. I had only gotten about six episodes into that, before I got distracted again and started watching the first 9 episodes of PRISON SCHOOL (which brings me up to the events of Volume 3 of the manga, which is all that I've read so far). Unlike Planetes, Prison School is adapted almost exactly from the manga with no deviations (well, "deviations" are part of the story, but I mean it's a note-for-note adaptation). I guess I'll go back to Planetes again and finish watching the anime, while I find the two manga volumes of Prison School which I couldn't order through Diamond via my LCS (which means I probably have to find them on Amazon). I prefer to read the manga before seeing the anime. Other things on my list of stuff to watch which I've read the manga, but haven't seen the anime adaptation as yet, include ONE-PUNCH MAN, MOB PSYCHO 100 and DEATH NOTE. Then there anime series I'd like to check out that I haven't read the manga of. I've seen a few episodes of the anime for THE DISASTROUS LIFE OF SAIKI K. and really enjoyed those (although I definitely prefer the subtitled ones over the English-dubbed ones) so I'd like to see the rest of that series at some point, as well. The manga doesn't seem to have been made available in English translation, that I could discover. I find I can watch most of this stuff online in some form.

Of course, time spent watching video is time not spent reading, and vice-versa.

I'm encouraged by your enthusiasm for the Netflix SABRINA, and I'm definitely giving some thought to that Netflix free trial. The hardest part is figuring out how to find the time to watch those 10 episodes without falling even further behind in the list of stuff I've bought to read, plus anime related to manga that I like.

General Discussion / Re: What comics have you been reading?
« on: October 27, 2018, 12:30:14 am »
I'm been using Previewsworld and its predecessor for the Weekly Releases lists since 2005.  It is pretty useful and each week I use it to make up a list of what I am expecting in my orders from that week, even though my shipments are monthly now.  I will also occasionally peak at the next week list.  I'll stick with the printed Previews catalog, though.  It only costs me 99 cents and I don't mind waiting until it shows up in my order the first week of the month.  The preorder setup at Mycomicshop comes in pretty handy as well and their layout tends to be a decent match for the printed book.  Plus you can only look at new material or graphic novels etc.

I have to admit Mycomicshop has one of the best online comic stores I've ever seen. I often use it as a kind of mini-database, because it's easier to navigate and faster loading than either or !  The catalog section of Previewsworld is pretty easy to use once you figure it out, and you can choose to view "comics", "graphic novels/trade paperbacks", "books", "magazines", "apparel", "toys & models" etc. to further narrow the product listing, including the list within any one publisher/vendor. I just like it because I can copy and paste the information directly from that into a document or spreadsheet, once I've located a product of interest. Also, Previewsworld tends to have the complete monthly solicitation information earlier than any other site. I just can't deal with reading the comic newssites like Newsarama, etc. any more... all those popup ads and extraneous graphics & animation make any of those sites slow and painful to use these days.

I've finished catching up on Valiant over the past few days.

Valiant High 1-4 - An interesting alternate take where the Valiant heroes are teenagers attending Valiant High with Harada as Principal.  It is sort of like the John Hughes films from the 1980s and is perhaps not the most original, but was fun.

I've never been a Valiant fan. Well, okay, actually I was a Valiant fan back when Jim Shooter was the Editor-in-chief. I think that was for the first year-and-a-half, two years... something like that, back in the early 1990s. I really only read them for Solar, Magnus, and Turok. Never really cared much for any of their original characters. So I only picked up VALIANT HIGH because it was Derek Charm's work (which I'd previously enjoyed on both IDW's STARFLEET ACADEMY and ACP's JUGHEAD). I liked it, but I didn't imagine that high school setting could be part of the real in-continuity backstory of the Valiant Universe. Too bad it was so short; I'd love to see a continuation of that, as long as Derek Charm continued to be the artist.

General Discussion / Re: What comics have you been reading?
« on: October 25, 2018, 02:13:43 am »
I also read around a dozen comics from Joe Books.   Their output is nonexistent now so I am wondering if they have financial problems.

I haven't paid too much attention to JoeBooks, but they're still soliciting new product for January 2019 shipping (Disney Cinestory graphic novels). Only two items for that month's solicitation, but they're still in business.
Were these in the November Previews?  If so, I haven't received it yet.  I didn't see anything in the October Previews and the only item in the September Previews was a Wreck it Ralph activity book.  Their monthly comic titles stopped coming out earlier this year so maybe they are focusing on areas that sell better or make them more of a profit like the Cinestory books.

They've kind of made the Diamond Previews printed catalog almost obsolete now -- not only can you download a PDF version of both the catalog and the order form from, but all the catalog listings are online (usually on the Thursday prior to the week when the printed catalog ships to comic shops). And that's coming from a guy who Previews was like The Bible to. I don't even bother downloading the PDFs, because that's just a hassle to page through all the listings, match up the Previews page numbers with the order code numbers listed in the PDF of the same month's order form, and so forth. I just go straight to every Thursday before the last Wednesday of the month to check the newest solicitations. Don't ask me why, but this month the November Previews solicits were online by 10-18-18, even though it's a month with 5 comic-shipping Wednesdays (although the printed PREVIEWS did arrive in comic shops yesterday, 10/24).

Every month I spend a busy few hours going through all the listings and copying & pasting Diamond order codes of products I plan to order (or am at least considering ordering). I just paste the order codes, product title, price, and projected shipping dates into an Excel spreadsheet, and use that to keep track of what I have or haven't placed an order for yet. I have a color-coding scheme to let me see at a glance whether or not I've already ordered it, and I don't delete those listings until I've actually received the products. It works for me, anyway. I wish it were organized by product type (comics & graphic novels, magazines & books, merchandise & apparel, games) like the physical catalog, since that would make it easier than looking through the listings for each individual company, but... oh, well, so I have to do SOME work. It's always good for me to start working on that new online Previewsworld catalog ASAP, since having a list in Excel lets me sort products by ship dates, or add up prices to see how my monthly comic budget is looking. Sometimes I need to add up the overall totals, then decide whether or not I want some of the more expensive items that badly or not. (Those IDW Artist Editions put a serious dent in things sometimes.) Then again, the more expensive the item, the more likely it is to be advance-solicited (and sometimes, the more likely it is to ship later than scheduled).

Apart from having the Previews catalog listings online, there are other good reasons to use Previewsworld, because you can get lists of everything that shipped to comic shop retailers from DCD's warehouses this week, and what's confirmed as being received by DCD from publishers and planned to ship to retailers NEXT week. You can also get Product Updates (changes in price, format, contents, shipping date), and listings of Cancelled product solicitations. Like, for example, going back through the last 5 months of cancellation listings, I don't see any products from JoeBooks that were cancelled, which might be a good indicator if they were in some sort of financial trouble. Since they're actually shipping the products they're soliciting*, even though there might not be a lot of them, they can't be as bad off as you seem to think.

(Well... apart from that unfortunate failure to ship HARVEY HITS #2, 3 & 4 that they solicited last year... )

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