lazypadawan: (Default)
A couple of days ago, Reuters mentioned in an article about the Mayan temple that doubled as the Rebel base on Yavin IV in ANH that Eppy VII was about Luke setting up the Jedi Order there...naturally people thought this lowly Reuters staffer knows something the rest of us don't. Folks, Michael Arndt isn't going to take his script to a bar and leave it there like a drunken Apple employee for a Reuters reporter on his way to Guatemala to discover. I knew right away the guy who wrote the article was referring to Kevin J. Anderson's books from the '90s and he probably got that from scouring Wookieepedia or something. Nothing to see here, move along.

Then came more chatter about Marvel getting the comics license when the current one with Dark Horse expires, this time from a Disney blog. Sadly this is probably true. It would be really surprising if Disney were to allow Lucasfilm to license its own comics to a rival when Disney owns one of the biggest comics publishers in the world. Disney likes to keep it in the family. Even though not every Star Wars comic from the past 20 years was a winner, Dark Horse has been a great home for the GFFA. It went from being a small indie to the third largest comics publisher (behind D.C. and Marvel) just as the Star Wars renaissance was happening in the '90s. While the old school Marvel Star Wars comics had their hokey charm, I liked that Dark Horse's stable took the mythology a little more seriously. I thought they had a better handle on what Star Wars is and at the same time, were willing to take chances and expand the universe even beyond what has been in the books. At least back in the late '70s, Stan Lee was still in charge. Frankly I am not a fan of current Marvel Chief Creative Officer Joe Quesada and I worry about what that guy will do to Star Wars titles. Not to mention that in my humble opinion, most of the guys who work for the big two are the usual fanboy hacks, while Dark Horse finds really good, interesting artists.

Update: Yesterday, Dark Horse's Randy Stradley posted on DH's forum in response to the rumors, "Don't believe everything you read on the internet."
lazypadawan: (Default)
I went to my old comic book store and sure enough, they were out of the Savage Opress/Avatar The Last Airbender comic. The guy said they didn't receive that many :/.

So I went to my hair salon appointment and afterwards I headed to the Saks Off 5th outlet. The same shopping center has an anime/manga store and surprisingly they were also participating in Free Comic Book Day. Yeah, they sell comics but it wasn't exactly a traditional comics store either. (The girls who run it are Japanese.) So I quickly parked, dashed out of my car, and fortunately, I was able to snag a Savage Opress comic.

Then I come home and read it, and it's just aw'right. Apparently it ties in with those online CW comics I never read. Oh well. At least it didn't cost me anything.
lazypadawan: (Default)


This is from NBC's pilot for a new Wonder Woman t.v. series, unfortunately brought to be you by David E. Kelley (sigh), starring Adrienne Palicki.

The show might be good or it might suck, so I'll just critique the look here. It tries to bridge the classic look for Wonder Woman and the horrid new getup they have for her in the comics. But I'm not feeling the shiny leatherette pants; why are they necessary? Does NBC's censors have a problem with bare legs? Palicki fits what Hollywood thinks is fit, but she just looks thin, not athletic. By comparison, Lucy Lawless's Xena really did look like an Amazon warrior.

What truly annoys me is they (to use EW.com's words) "de-emphasized patriotism", or more accurately, took the the American out of the costume. Gone is the red-white-and-blue scheme and there aren't any stars but the red stars on her headband and her bustier. Apparently NBC wants to make sure this plays in Beijing instead of Peoria.

There seems to be a run on movies and t.v. shows taking American icons and symbols and diluting or even eliminating their American character with the excuse that it wouldn't otherwise work in the international market. Superman was for "truth, justice, and all of that stuff" in Bryan Singer's boring 2006 film "Superman Returns." Everyman soldier G.I. Joe became some vague internationalist quasi-military organization called G.I. JOE based out of Belgium. BELGIUM?? The upcoming Captain America movie is going to be called something else in the foreign market and the people making the film promise no flag-waving whatsoever that might offend some America hater's sensibilities.

To those who think people in Korea or Botswana won't see a movie or show with some blatant American stuff in it, I say, "Bull puckey." People have been fascinated with the Texas oil barons of "Dallas," the California beaches of "Baywatch," and the New York City of "Seinfeld" and "Sex And The City" for decades. The Sam Raimi Spider Man flicks didn't shy away from the waving flag and those movies were big international hits. Audiences aren't stupid. They know what they're getting when they tune into an American-made show or movie, just as I know what I'm getting when I watch a Chinese sword flick or a British-made series.

Here's the t.v. Wonder Woman I grew up with:



Update: [livejournal.com profile] knight_ander just posted that apparently Lynda Carter approves.
lazypadawan: (Default)
I recently finished reading the first four-issue story arc in Dark Horse's new series "Blood Ties." The first arc was about Jango Fett and Boba Fett, which begins before the events of AOTC and ends some time after Boba grows up and goes into business for himself. In it, Jango is hired to perform a hit, one where he gets young Boba to assist with ending his target's life. The target is a rogue clone and he left behind a baby son. Years later, Fett is hired to pursue his only living relative.

I know people don't talk much about Star Wars comics anymore but this is one is worth checking out. The writing is top-notch and the art is beautiful. The cool part is the rogue clone's grown son is modeled on Daniel Logan. If you can't find all of the back issues (the last one came out just before Thanksgiving) at your store, hang on for the trade paperback.
lazypadawan: (Wicket)
I picked up the first issue of "Blood Ties," a new SW title from Dark Horse. The first arc is about Jango and Boba Fett, and it's the best SW comic I've read in a while. There's very good writing and beautiful art. It seems to take place shortly before AOTC, since Jango is already on Count Dooku's payroll. Go pick it up if you read SW comics.

Sideshow Collectibles will soon offer this cheerful Ewok diorama:

http://www.sideshowtoy.com/?p=23663

I must've laughed maniacally for an hour when I first saw it. Somebody at Sideshow thinks the way I do, heh heh. I'm almost tempted despite the $250 price tag.

Ewoks rock!
lazypadawan: (Default)
Hidden way down in a list of SW comics solicitations for June 2010 on Rebelscum.com and starwars.com is a description of Legacy #50 with this at the very end:

The final issue of Star Wars: Legacy!

I guess after four years, c'est tout for Cade Skywalker and company.

For me, Legacy turned out to be a mixed bag. The art was always good and the script was usually top-notch, but the overall story was directionless and its protagonist Cade never changed very much. I never did care for the premise that the post-ROTJ world devolved into another totalitarian Empire eventually taken over by another Sithocracy. But I was willing to go along with it because other aspects of the comic was done really well. At first Cade was compelling but he never became the hero he needed to be. No matter what happened to him, he never learned a darn thing. Maybe now he will since he's got only a few more issues to go. But it's as though they wanted to keep him where he was because he will seem "cool" to readers. The series seemed to be allergic to having any major heroic characters.

Supposedly there are seven new projects in the pipeline. Let's hope they'll get back to good ol' fashioned SW values and ideals.
lazypadawan: (Default)
Dark Horse announced today that it has a new series set during the Old Republic that will debut this fall. Starring a female Jedi in an era where there were lots of Sith, this is unique in that there will be tie-in novels with Del Rey as well. Read the whole press release here:

http://www.darkhorse.com/Press-Releases/1824/Dark-Horse-Announces-All-New-Star-Wars-Series-Knight-Errant-02-10-10

I guess it all depends on the writing and if they can make this new character interesting. I'm comme-ci, comme-ca about Old Republic era EU. Yes it does allow for a lot more breathing room than the movie era stories. Sometimes there are great stories set during that era. The Tales of the Jedi series back in the '90s come to mind. Sometimes, the stories aren't all that interesting and the characters feel like sloppy seconds next to the film characters we all know and love.

I would however like to see a hero/ine who for once is about the ideals of the SW saga. Not somebody perfect, mind you but somebody along the lines of a Nomi Sunrider or an Ahsoka Tano. Somebody to cheer for. It seems like to me we haven't seen a character like that in a long time in the expanded universe.
lazypadawan: (Default)
That's the rumor going around! We'll see if someone confirms or deny but it looks like D.C. might be teaming up with Dark Horse and Lucasfilm for crossover fun:

http://www.examiner.com/x-2730-Star-Wars-Examiner~y2010m1d5-Star-Wars-and-DC-Comics-crossovers

I can see it now: The Dark Knight Vs. The Dark Side! I'd personally love to see a Sandman universe/SW crossover.
lazypadawan: (Default)
The comic series based on the Knights of the Old Republic game is coming to an end with #50. The news was announced at a Diamond retail summit in its home base of Baltimore.

Why end it? Beats me. Usually Dark Horse lets a series run for a couple of years and then replaces it with something else. So it's possible another big SW project is coming down the pike. Right now that leaves Clone Wars, Dark Times, and Legacy along with the occasional Star Wars Adventures booklet. I think DH is also re-releasing some one-shot books.

If you ask me, KOTOR was a decent series with some good characters but I think it has run its course. Once the whole prophecy thing was over in the first arc, it was like solving Laura Palmer's murder.
lazypadawan: (Default)
Even though I've given up on post-ROTJ era novels, I still read all of the comics. "Dark Times," which focuses on a fugitive Jedi and features an occasional Darth Vader drive-by, is really a good (and somewhat dark) series. The comics based on CW are fun reading for all ages and the most recent Star Wars Adventures booklet has a terrific Han/Leia story. Even the new "Invasion," based on the New Jedi Order series of books, is very good so far, two or three issues into it. However, reading it made me depressed all over again on how the books fumbled with Jacen, Jaina, and Anakin Solo ;).

Which gets me to "Legacy." When this series debuted three years ago, it was a hit with fans right out of the gate. It stars a tribe of neo-Sith, an Emperor desperate to get his throne back, and the lead hero, a drug-addled former Jedi who makes a living as a bounty hunter, who just happens to be the last living descendent of Luke Skywalker. Well, not exactly. We discover he has a living uncle whose main Force talent appears to be ingesting pizza and beer. Heh heh. And I suspect a character introduced early on may be a descendant of Jaina and Jag Fel.

On the one hand, the writing and art have remained consistently high-quality ever since the series first started. On the other hand, Cade Skywalker is still the same self-absorbed douchebag he was since Issue #1. It's like the "Mary Poppins" parody episode of The Simpsons where they proudly sing at the end about how they never learn a thing. He's been set up as the last best hope of the galaxy but just when you think he's about to turn his life around, he goes back for the death sticks or otherwise acts like a douchebag all over again. He never learns a damn thing and there were times I wondered if they were just keeping him that way on purpose to please antihero-worshipping fanboys. I've also had discussions with [livejournal.com profile] darth_pipes about the series' lack of a heroic character, someone Cade could aspire to be. The movies had such characters all over the place: Princess Leia, Obi-Wan, Qui-Gon, Padmé Amidala, etc.. This series doesn't really have anyone like that besides some bit player Jedi who show up on occasion and some spectral visits from Grandpa Luke. Otherwise, Cade's friends are underworld types, his mother is a shady and somewhat promiscuous spy who practically abandoned him, his former girlfriend dies, his half-sister is an agent or something, and his uncle practically disowns him. Someone else in the world apparently agrees with us, because Dark Horse ran a letter from a fan saying as much an issue or two back.

In the issue that came out last week, Luke shows up for another post-mortem chat, again warning Cade that he is headed for the Dark Side. Whether or not Cade finally listens decides whether or not "Legacy" evolves or continues to spin its wheels.
lazypadawan: (Default)
At some point I'll get to "Legacy" after three years and what I think is problematic with what's otherwise a good series.

In the meantime, I finished two digest sized comics, one with Han Solo in some pre-ANH adventure and the other a CW one. In the former, Han has to team up with a former fellow pirate while the bad guys are holding Chewie as collateral. Not a bad story but I wasn't crazy about the art. The CW one, with Ahsoka having to literally wing it on a diplomatic mission, was really good.

starwars.com has posted a new CW webcomic but it's like 100 pages long. Too long to stare at a computer!
lazypadawan: (Default)
Here are some of the books I've finished lately:

The Making Of Indiana Jones

t's a very interesting book, particularly since I don't know nearly as much about the behind-the-scenes stuff on the IJ movies as I do about SW. The meatiest part of the book is about Raiders of the Lost Ark; here you can read about the evolution of Indiana Jones and the movies/artwork that inspired the character as well as the process of casting. Everybody knows Tom Selleck was originally going to play the character until CBS decided it needed to rope him down with "Magnum P.I.." But did you know Sean Young--then an actress with only a little bit of experience--was a strong contender to play Marion? Every detail of filming is chronicled, from the illnesses of cast and crew to the quirks of Steven Spielberg (he brought his own canned food on location, which was probably smart) and Frank Marshall (who created a tradition of jumping into a cake). There's less detail on the subsequent films but some surprising things crop up nonetheless. Ke Huy Quan, the kid who played Short Round, was only accompanying a brother trying out for the film only for the casting folks to take an interest in him instead. Papa George wanted to have a Scottish haunted castle somewhere in there, which ended up being the unhaunted big German castle in "The Last Crusade." The book kinda runs out of gas when it gets to "Kingdom of the Crystal Skull." Sure it was interesting to see what plot points and set pieces were there from the get-go--Lucas insisted on aliens all along and Spielberg had to be convinced--but because there's not a lot of history behind the movie we instead get a lot of PR-ish "(insert name) is so awesome" or "(insert name) is just the best." It gets a little old after a while. But there is a poignancy to the fact that many of the key players who worked on "Raiders" were deceased by the time KOTCS started shooting.

All in all a fascinating read.

Star Wars Manga Black & Silver

This was originally published in Japan with different language translations in Europe by Tokyopop. I remember reading about it a few years ago and could never find anywhere with a copy until I came across a recent LiveJournal post on how the two volumes are available through Amazon's British sister site, Amazon.co.uk. The order wasn't cheap, even at a discount from a second-hand seller, thanks to the exchange rate. But the manga is definitely unique and it's always fun to have something unusual and rare in your collection. It's a bit like the Star Wars Infinities series, with most of the stories revolving around Darth Vader. One dark, angst-filled story is about Vader taking on a young Jedi survivor named Tao as an apprentice and then discovering his son is still alive. But other characters like General Grievous star in their own stories and there's some lighthearted fare, including one about Jawas and another about a Gungan playing a feint with Vader just before ANH. As someone not used to reading untranslated manga, the format was a bit of challenge to follow.

The Clone Wars

Just finished Karen Traviss's novelization. This reads like a PG-rated version of her Republic Commando books only with more Anakin and less Mando culture. The book's Anakin is darker and angstier than the one in the CW cartoon, a guy with a lot of secrets and resentment. It's obvious Traviss loooooves Anakin and haaaaaates the Jedi Council. If it's not Anakin mulling over how the Council has screwed him over or its mind games, it's Ventress mulling over how the Jedi are hypocrites. Still, Anakin takes to Ahsoka and there are several passages that will make A/P fans happy :). Ahsoka fares well and at one point, Anakin realizes she is going to be a good Jedi and will butt heads with the Council, figuring that went hand-in-hand. Captain Rex and his fellow clones are written well too. There are scenes not in the theatrical release and there are scenes done from a different perspective than the film version.
lazypadawan: (More Dollies)
For those of you who collect Hallmark, today's the day the 2007 line appears in stores. Since this is the 30th anniversary of ANH, they're all ANH-themed ornaments: a small diorama with Luke, Ol' Ben, and Threepio, Tusken Raider, Jawa with Artoo, and the Millennium Falcon. Wonder which one celosia2 is gonna buy ;)?

On Wednesday, Legacy #14 and Rebellion #8 came out. Legacy returns to Cade's mission to rescue the Jedi he sold out some time ago, now a prisoner in the Sith Temple. Unfortunately, it doesn't go too well. This comic rocks every issue and I've developed a bit of a crush on Cade. Leave it to me to be drawn to the bad boys. It must be the Vader pants and the Han Solo attitude. Dark Horse needs to lock Legacy's team in a room forever and make them do SW comics ;). Rebellion is coming along pretty well too. Vader kicks some butt and chokes some losers.

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