The Rise and Fall of the Comic Empire

I stumbled onto SF Debris’ Opinionated Reviews a few weeks ago. The page features a fascinating history of the comic book industry. Some of the stories and information I knew, but much of it I did not. I have heard many stories about the dodgy tactics Marvel and DC used over the years to screw over each other and destroy their competition. Their mutual hatred of Valiant and Image is legendary.

I have not vetted any of the claims made in the videos, however, based on my understanding of the comic book industry I do not doubt any of it. Despite the industry being about “funny books,” it is still a business and that will always attract some of the worst humanity has to offer.

What is particularly interesting is Marvel’s behavior over the years. When Disney bought them in 2009, I thought that the Disney need to crush all competition would ruin Marvel. Little did I know that Marvel was as underhanded and vicious as Disney. Given the information presented in the videos, Disney’s buyout of Marvel looks practically incestuous.

The series is well worth the watch. Continue reading

A Dose of Stupid v108

It happens every day. In fact, it is pretty hard to avoid it. There are some things that can only be understood with a slap on the forehead. Things so mind-boggling that one wonders how humans managed to evolve thumbs while being this mentally inept. Case in point:

Comic book heroes with average body types

Bear with me a moment and allow me to share my pain. My godson comes over to me and dangles his tablet in front of my face. I stare at it for a few seconds, stupefied by the image on the screen. It is so wrong, so viciously moronic that the only words I can manage are, “What the fuck are you showing me?”

What he showed me was this: Continue reading

Ignominy in Satin

I love comic books. I have since I was a small child. I found solace in them. I found a way to cope. I found a way to live.

My favorite character is Batman. I wrote about that before. So, I do not begrudge people finding their heroes in comic book characters. However, I do take issue when people tear down other characters to make their favorite look “cool.” It bothers me because I know how important those characters can be to people. These characters mean much more than just cheap entertainment. That is why I am so baffled by an article featured on the Good Men Project.

Devon Sanders wrote an essay for Wonder Woman anthology that was never published. The title on GMP is Dignity in Satin: Wonder Woman Taught Me How To Be a Better Man. Yet the essay appears to show the opposite.

It starts off well enough. Sanders recounts first seeing the Wonder Woman TV show as a child. This began his love of the character. He states how he viewed her as regal and impressive, even though Lynda Carter should have looked ridiculous in her costume. Things take a different turn as Sanders explains what makes Wonder Woman so important:

Lynda Carter knew what many others did not. Superman’s “S” sells itself. As difficult as it may be to believe, it is easy to cloak oneself in “Bat Shark Repellent” and let the moment speak for itself. Lynda Carter found Wonder Woman’s core and let it shine for everyone to see. If the Wonder Woman were to survive, Ms. Carter had to bring to the role that one divine thing women seem to have in greater supply than most men: Dignity

This is the first of many digs at Batman, Superman, male heroes, and men. Continue reading

Bulletin Board v224

Abuse victim rejects apology — A man kept in solitary confinement in a boy’s home run by the Salvation Army, where he was made to sleep where he defecated, has refused to accept an apology for the abuse he suffered. ‘If I see one of those uniforms come within a metre of me, you’d better be there … okay, just keep them away from me,’ the man said when asked if he would accept an apology from the Salvation Army for the abuse he suffered at the Riverview Training Farm in Queensland in 1971.

Cardinal George Pell tells Royal Commission he never told church lawyers to deny sex abuse of altar boy John Ellis — What is the difference between disputing and denying? Quite a lot, according to Cardinal George Pell today. He said that he had never told the church’s lawyers to deny that former altar boy John Ellis has been sexually abused by a priest when he sued the Sydney Archdiocese. He only accepted legal advice that they make Mr Elllis “prove” it.

Dublin priest gets 15 years for 34 years of child abuse in the UK — “Predatory” Francis Paul Cullen, 85, pleaded guilty to 21 charges of indecent assault and other sexual offences last month after being extradited to the UK last year following 22 years on the run in Tenerife. The offences were committed between 1957 and 1991 on children aged between six and 14. Today Cullen looked down in the dock at Derby Crown Court as sentence was passed.

End the embarrassment: More help for male victims demand domestic violence campaigners — With Greater Manchester Police reporting a chilling increase of more than 1,700 cases of domestic violence in the last year, MM looks at the often forgotten victims – men. Latest figures show that GMP dealt with an overwhelming 60,464 cases of domestic violence in the year from September 2012 to September 2013, an increase of 1,715 cases on the previous year. According to Women’s Aid, one in four women will be a victim of domestic violence in their lifetime, many of these on a number of occasions. Continue reading

Something Terrible

Originally posted on October 24, 2013

I stumbled onto a comic about sexual abuse:

Something Terrible is a short autobiographical comic by Dean Trippe, and deals with mature subject matter, including childhood trauma and Batman.

Dean Trippe is best known as the creator of the superhero parody webcomic, Butterfly, and as the co-founder and co-editor of Project: Rooftop, the superhero costume redesign art blog. He is also co-host of The Last Cast podcast, and you can follow him on Tumblr, Twitter, and Facebook. Email for more information.

It is a powerful story, and reminds me much of my own. Continue reading

Bulletin Board v60

Abuse network ringleaders jailed — The two men at the centre of Scotland’s largest known child abuse network have been jailed for life. Neil Strachan, 41, attempted to rape an 18-month-old boy while 38-year-old James Rennie sexually assaulted a three-month-old. Strachan was sentenced to a minimum of 16 years in prison, while Rennie was ordered to serve at least 13 years. Police said the operation had led to more than 200 suspected paedophiles, 70 of them in the UK, being identified. Six other men had already been sentenced for their involvement in the network.

‘Abuse rabbi’ returns to Israel — The leader of a Jewish sect has been extradited from Brazil to Israel to face charges of abusing children in a purification ritual to expel demons. Elior Chen fled in 2008 after two boys, aged 3 and 4, were taken to hospital with severe injuries. One is in a vegetative state with brain damage. It is alleged young children were beaten, burned and made to eat faeces at his home in the occupied West Bank.

Archdiocese didn’t publicize priest’s abuse cases, group says — The head of a group that fights child abuse by priests said today that Catholic officials in Detroit failed to publicize the abuse cases of a Catholic seminarian from Detroit who had previously abused children, but is now working as a priest in the Philippines. And it said that a former member of a Detroit-based religious order continued to teach in classrooms despite allegations of abuse.

Bruised, burned boy, 5, dies; mother beat him, police say — A 5-year-old boy who police believe endured years of abuse died Saturday, one day after being hospitalized with head injuries and cuts, bruises and burns over his entire body. The boy’s mother, who gave birth to Arshon Baker while she was in prison, was arrested and was being held on suspicion of felonious assault. Police said more-serious charges could be filed against Angel Glass, 24, when they complete their investigation. Glass told police on Friday that she beat her son because he pulled on her dress to get her attention, said Lt. Thomas Stacho, a police spokesman. Continue reading

Bulletin Board v.5

Much in the same vein as “This Week in the News,” the Bulletin Board will list news stories and also blog and forum posts. It should be noted at I do not necessarily endorse or support the items linked. I simply find them to be interesting and/or relevant to the issues discussed on this blog. As the weeks go by, each new “volume” will be added to a page link, that way the way easily available without having to do a search or hunt through all my posts (not that I am suggesting not to hunt through the posts). Continue reading