Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Free Form Comments

Say whatever you want to in the comments to this post -- random, off topic thoughts, ideas, suggestions, questions, recommendations, criticisms (which can be anonymous), surveys, introductions if you have never commented before, personal news, self-promotion, requests to be added to the blog roll and so on. If I forget, remind me. Remember these comments can be directed at all the readers, not just me.

ALSO. You can use this space to re-ask me questions you asked me before that I failed to answer because I was too busy.

AND you can use this space to comment on posts that are old enough that no one is reading the comments threads anymore.

You do not have to have a blogger account or gmail account to post a comment -- you can write a comment, write your name at the bottom of your comment like an e mail, and then post using the "anonymous" option.

WRITING FOR THIS BLOG. If I see a big free form comment that deserves more attention, I will pull it and make it its own post, with a label on the post and on the sidebar that will always link to all the posts you write for this blog. I am always looking for reviews of games, tv, movies, music and books.


Shlomo said...

I liked Jason's reference to the “the ‘stand up and cheer’ factor,” which in my mind is complemented by the subtly different 'cathartic shiver' factor.

Is anyone interested in a favorite x-men moments/scenes post?

scott91777 said...

Question for the teachers:

Beginning this year we will be required to do some sort of interview assigment in our Freshman Comp. courses. Does anyone else do this in their classes? Suggestions for in class activities as well as specific kinds of interview projects are all welcome!

Jason said...

Credit to Marc Caputo for the "Stand up and cheer factor." He used in his review of a Green Lantern story -- I think it was that "Sinestro Corps War" thingie.

So many great X-Men moments. A few that immediately come to mind --

X-Men 137 -- Xavier: "Lilandra, wait! Jean Grey Ann'Kll'a!!" (Possibly not spelled right.) It is just as Lilandra has decreed that Jean Grey must die, and the X-Men don't know what to do, having just been shocked by the news that Phoenix destroyed a planet. But Professor X -- who has spent several months on Lilandra's world with nothing to do but read, basically -- knows just what to say to buy them some time. And it also sets up the big fight for the issue. It's such a brilliantly economical moment, setting the trajectory for the issue (which also happens to be the climax to Claremont's entire run up to that point), and also consolidating and justifying the seemingly arbitrary thread that had Xavier leaving Earth in the first place. A great moment.

X-Men 161 -- Flashback to Xavier and Magneto fighting Nazis just after WWII. They go through most of the issue not using their powers in front of each other, but when they get cornered by Nazis with machine guns, Magneto finally lets loose. In that panel, Xavier is shocked, and Magneto says, "Surely by now, Charles, you've realized that I'm the same as you." And Xavier thinks to himself, "He's a mutant just like me, with the power to control metal! This is fantastic!" The contrast between Xavier (at the point very young and of course idealistic, a little naive, he hasn't figured out that Magneto was a mutant also) and "Magnus" (older, a pragmatist, less easy to impress, and smart enough to have deduced that Xavier is a mutant like him, without having to be told) is ingenious.

Jason said...

So, Geoff, just looking at your Twitter posts ... you've already picked up X-Men Forever #1? Crikey, you're quick.

Paul said...

Speaking of X-Men Forever #1, I have my Annotations and Insights articles on the series over at The Comic Addiction:

Jason said...

By the way, whoever I was arguing with about that opening sequence of "The Last Crusade" being silly because it had all of the most important things in Indy's young life happen to him on the same exact day ...

... Never mind. I have re-evaluated. I am fine with that scene now.

ba said...

FYI - brought geoff to a hip-hop show yesterday. working my way up to getting him to mosh.

Geoff Klock said...

I did get X-Men Forever. I am very curious to hear you take on it Jason.

finsof72 said...

Scott, make them interview me. Or Matt Lauer. Who is funnier than Will Ferrell in Land of the Lost. Also, I kind of like those fictional interviews, because they'd require research. Like,for example, if I was interviewing Stephen Colbert and asked him what he thought of the particle physics experiments going in in Europe, his response could be 'God did it.'

Or something like that.

Christian said...

Another one that is a little close to the "Stand Up and Cheer" Factor is the Fuck Yeah Moment, in which a character does something that is so monumentally awesome, in-character, yet surprising that the only proper responds is to pump your fists and go "FUCK YEAH."

Grant Morrison's JLA is filled with them from Flash punching the White Martian in mid-run circling the world and grabbing the vase, before it hits the ground to Batman "hitting Prometheus with a motorneuron disease."

I have a question concerning that though: Did he mean he hit a guy who had a motorneuron disease or did he mean he hit him WITH a motorneuron disease?

Shlomo said...

10 classic scenes in chronological order. although Im listing them from memory so the details might not be exact (not including scenes from millar or morrison):
1. saying good-byes on the tarmac (uxm 132?), separate broodings on the plane. just an iconic world-developing transition between plot-lines. very subtle.
2. kitty accidentily phasing through the danger room, and concluding that collosus has been crushed, although he pushes the walls back apart (pryde of the x-men) this was my first intro to the x-men, and this was the scene that rocked my world.
3. Jean spirals out of control: Mastermind convinces jean that shes traveling into her ancestors past when he's really brainwashing her into believing theyre creepy aristocrats in a relationship (UXM 130's) she turns on x-men, then on mastermind, then on x-men again before turning into an insane world-eater (before it was retconned that it wasnt her) these scenes just escalated so seamlessly to the point of unbelief (and Jason I really disagree with you about the shiar scene. I like the build-up much better than the final part of the arc.)
4. sentinels pull open the top of the tunnel and future versions of dear characters are really in mortal danger (uxm 142)
5. rogue and mystique conversation about how she needs to stay with the x-men so she can learn to control her abilities (uxm 177)
6. storm and wolverine at the morgue looking at kitty "Thats not her" (uxm 178)
7. "on my doorstep?" Magneto (x-men 1)
8. "dreams are for people who sleep" "who will be the next new mutant to make a difference?" conversation between forge and nightcrawler (UXM 300)
9. "you might be a grenade, but I am an atom bomb" Jean grey to sabretooth, and the next scene shows him sitting quietly (x-men 26)
10. magneto as the face of xaviers guilty conscience (UXM 309)

Mikey said...

Christian - that is exactly the question I asked about the Batman/Prometheus encounter. After the initial fist pumping. Either way is great, but I prefer the idea of using the disease as a fist.

Revealing perhaps more than I should about my era of reading X-Men comics, but I would say Magneto ripping Apocalypse in half at the end of the Age of Apocalypse was pretty cool. In a kind of "90s" way.

I don't have many more for X-Men, or they turn up in weird places. The end of the Cassandra Nova arc where Emma Frost says something like "I rather think we've turned you into a pocket calculator darling." A is for Atom. B is for Bomb.

JLA really is full of them though.

Paul said...

Moments that made me fall in love with the Uncanny X-Men during the first year I started to read the title:

- The violent but gorgeously rendered fight between Wolverine & Deathstrike by BWS.

- Storm, without any powers, taking on muggers in an alley in San Francisco (though I would later find out that this is a repeated motif).

- Spiral smearing Kitty Pryde's face across the page of my comic book. Weird & disturbing.

- The showdown between Rachel and Wolverine in Selene's bedroom ending with a >Snikt<. This blew my sixth grade mind.

- Colossus and Shadowcat tag-teaming Nimrod. Icing on the cake was the JRJR full page image of Petey bodyslaming Pinky.

- Scalphunter blowing away Tommy at the end of #210, signifying what I didn't realize at the time, the end of the All New, All Different era.

Shlomo said...

Mikey -
I think that AoA had alot of good S-U-and-C moments, that one you mention being one of them.

A scene I'm kind of fond of from that same issue, was the one in which bishop meets his past self after wandering around for decades confused and losing it. He grabs his past self and screams (somthin like) "for g-d's sake remember this moment!" There was no practical purpose in his screaming this instruction, as far as i can recall, but it seemed like such such a desperate attempt to hold his mind together. Unfortunately, that moment pretty much marked the last time he had any interesting moments for me.

scott91777 said...

I'll weigh in on X-men forever... I didn't like it. It seems like Claremont is doing a bad imitation of himself in terms of the dialogue and the internal monologues. It's Claremont, but it's the exact sort of cliche Claremont that Geoff talked about in his book... The rekindled romanced between Wolverine and Jean seems too sudden, forced almost.

All in all, I would have to say that this issue was probably actually written by Clairmont rather than Claremont.

Mikey said...

Shlomo - Man, Bishop sure symbolises lots that went wrong with X-Men comics, huh? Also a cool moment was when Blink defeated Holocaust in Astonishing X-Men. Their two names alone suggest the absurd, fun nature of such an encounter.

X-Men Forever - when I read the solicit for this I kind of thought "My god, talk about niche." My disdain for such a product that utterly jettisons the idea of the casual reader is assuaged somewhat by the cold fact that it's not for the casual reader. But like many, I still wish there was the pretence that Marvel (and DC) give a shit.

Jason said...

A memorable moment from X-Men 141 ... the build-up includes us seeing Kitty shrinking away from Nightcrawler, and later Nightcrawler noting that she still is not comfortable around his freaky looks. Storm says something like, "Give it time, Kurt. She will come around."

Then Kitty collapses, and wakes up with the mind of herself as a 43-year-old, and the first thing she does is give Kurt a big hug, much to his gaping surprise. Both a funny and touching moment ... Storm was right, she will come around. We now have proof.

Also, not so much a cool moment as a weird one. The Christmas issue where Kitty fights the N'Garai, she mentions that she doesn't want to work out too much, lest she become "a teenage Arnold Schwarzenegger." This is only one issue of after Days of Future Past, about big robots taking over in the future and the resistance sending one person back in time to change things ... yet it is four years BEFORE Schwarzenegger would star in The Terminator.

Also, Claremont and Byrne's previous Christmas story had been two years earlier in Marvel Team-Up, which featured Spider-Man and Red Sonja teaming up against N'Garai demons (them again). So, the first Claremont/Byrne "Christmas with the N'Garai story" features Red Sonja from CONAN comics, the second one features Kitty name-dropping Arnold Schwarzenegger ... and we are still two years away from Arnie starring in the first Conan movie as well!


Jeff said...

I'll go on record as saying I actually like the few issues of X-Men Jim Lee did after Claremont left. He did, after all, wrap up the Matsuo/Fenris plot from #268, provide some background on Gambit and give Dazzler and Longshot a fitting ending. Of course, it went off the rails after that. Going to pick up Forever today, more out of curiosity then expecting it to actually be good, though. Given the current state of things, Marvel needs to get Jason Aaron on Uncanny NOW. He seems to be the only writer in their stable who actually understands how to write the characters

Marc Caputo said...

Jason, thank you for the shout-out.

Even better than that, though - new Hillside Honda ad!!! Same girl - even hotter!! How is it done?

Geoff Klock said...

marc -- there is a new one?

Marc Caputo said...

Oh, hells yeah. Check out NY1 from 5:30-6:30 AM. I DVR'd it today.