Panther1

0:00-10:45: Greetings! And a slow burn of a greeting it is, too, what with Graeme actively (actively!) asking questions about Jeff’s storage space moving plans. And then a discussion of media mail?! Are you kidding me??  Just how lucky are you, you guys? It’s almost impossible to gauge.

10:45-22:04: Comics!  We realize right around here that we can talk about comics: y’know, just dive right and start talking about comics we’ve been reading on our over the last three-plus weeks that.  So of course we spend some time talking about public reception to the upcoming Captain America: Civil War movie. Also discussed: anger and the Internet, surgery, scheduling, commercials and Marvel Comics, and more.
22:04-37:38: Speaking of which, we discuss the first issue of Black Panther by Ta-Nehisi Coates, Brian Steelfreeze, and Laura Martin: Discussed: price points; Hickman’s Avengers; Don McGregor’s Panther’s Rage; the Marvel BOGO sale at Comixology and the Marvel Half-Price Off Sale at Amazon; Black Panther as Batman; Jack Kirby, Grant Morrison, and Geoff Johns.
37:38-52:58: in fact, Graeme has read *a lot* of Geoff Johns material recently so he has some opinions on this very topic. Discussed: JSA, Hawkman, Brightest Day, Flash: Rebirth, and Green Lantern: Rebirth; Captain Britain; Geoff Johns’ Flash and TV’s Flash; and more.
52:58-1:19:17: “Are you into Flash?” Graeme asks. “Like, as a character?”  This is a potentially great topic for conversation—who are our favorite heroes, and why?—but it catches Jeff surprisingly off-guard.  Discussed:  DC heroes and Marvel heroes; every Wildcat story ever; the template behind Morrison’s JLA and how it’s being used by Waid right now in All-New, All-Different Avengers; Nick Spencer and Daniel Acuna’s Captain America; Jeff’s Captain America theory; Avengers Standoff: Welcome to Pleasant Hill; DC’s Legends; where the name “The Phantom Stranger” came from; and more.
Elektra2
1:19:17-1:34:37: A thing Jeff re-read very recently and greatly enjoyed but not in the ways he expected: Elektra Assassin by Frank Miller and Bill Sienkiewicz. Also discussed:  David Mazzuchelli and Daredevil: Born Again and Batman: Year One; Dave McKean; Barron Storey; and more.
Wheaton11:34:37-1:40:06: Other things Jeff re-read and enjoyed: two collections of Brubaker’s and Phillips’ (and Staples’ and Breitweiser’s) ’ Criminal:  Bad Night and Last of the Innocent, while also checking out the recent 10th Anniversary Special Edition Magazine.  Discussed: Archie, Encyclopedia Brown; Britt Black; Wil Wheaton; Matt Fraction; and more.
Wheaton2
1:40:06-1:52:39: Also on the “Jeff read and enjoyed this” list: 4 Kids Walk Into a Bank by Tyler Boss and Matthew Rosenberg; Unbeatable Squirrel Girl V2 #7 by Ryan North, Erica Henderson and Ricco Renzi; The Vision #6 by Tom King, Gabriel Hernandez Walta and Jordie Bellaire (with a possible spoiler for Civil War II); the problem with Ms. Marvel; and more.
1:52:39-2:09:30: Jeff also read via Marvel Unlimited the first issue of Amazing Spider-Man (2015) by Dan Slott and Giuseppe Camuncoli and he had, let us just say, “all the feels” about it. Discussed: Spidey’s love interests; how to have your spider-cake and eat it too; grown-ups and Richie Rich; #NotMyBlackPanther; and more.
secret ending
2:09:30-2:14:46: Because we’ve run long, Graeme can only briefly extol the virtues of The Panther by Brecht Evens (now out in English) and Hot Dog Taste Test by Lisa Hanawalt, both from Drawn & Quarterly); and Jeff manages to work in how much he enjoyed the first issue of Sun Bakery by Corey “Rey” Lewis.
2:14:46-end: Closing Comments!  Look for us on  Stitcher! Itunes! Twitter together and separately: Graeme and Jeff! MattTumblr (where Graeme posted a really fantastic little Spider-Man story by Hannah Blumenreich.  If you haven’t seen it already, you should check it out)! And our special thanks to the kind crew at American Ninth Art Studios for their continuing support of this podcast, as well as our continuing special thanks to the Empress Audrey, Queen of the Galaxy…and to all 120 of our supporters on Patreon who make all this possible.
NEXT WEEK:  For some of the reasons discussed above, but also because of the schedule (we think?), there’s a skip week! Catch us in two for more audio gaga!
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12 comments on “Wait, What? Ep. 199: Panthers of a Sort

  1. Jeff Lester May 1, 2016

    And if you need a link to cut and paste and call your very own:

    http://theworkingdraft.com/media/podcasts/WaitWhat199.mp3

  2. Rick Vance May 2, 2016

    While the influences in the work Tom Scioli is doing in TF vs. Joe is plain as day (including direct Elektra Assassin call outs) the crayoning of the actual art is the most shocking and audacious thing I see regularly in mainstream comics.

    More so that it works so perfectly well.

  3. Dasbender May 2, 2016

    Not through the whole podcast yet, but I was surprised to hear your disdain for the Black Panther = Batman comparison. I assume there’s probably more to the character than that, that I’ve simply never been exposed to. But I’m LOVING Al Ewing’s Ultimates precisely because of that reflection. He’s doing Morrison JLA better than DC has ever done it since. Ultimates wouldn’t be the same without T’Challa in that role. As long as Ewing skates on this side of the Baman line. He’s got the most critical mind in the room, is the fastest thinker, and sees through deception. But with the added technology genius, people skills, wisdom gained through experience, and desire to change the world missing from the usual Bats portrayal. Ewing really has that aspirational hero thing down, which has been missing far too long from DC. It’s too early to see if Ta-Nehisi Coates will go there too, since issue 1 seemed more interested in establishing its modern relevance than in getting me psyched for issue 2. I’ll probably give him a longer-than-usual rope (~6 issues) to win me over, before Black Panther becomes a Marvel Unlimited read for me.

  4. Susan Cotton May 2, 2016

    I am curious to hear Jeff on Christopher Priest’s Black Panther, too. I started it in early April and I am about half-way through it. (I binge in moderation.) I had heard that Priest’s Panther was THE BEST. After three dozen, though, I feel disappointed.

    • I’ve been reading Al Ewing’s Ultimates and can’t honestly remember a single scene with T’chall doing anything significant. Probably I read them too late at night… I do recall loads of Blue Marvel being resident scientific genius.

      I get the whole #notmy… thing, but sometimes it’s not a knee jerk reaction, it’s a reasonable response to portrayals of a character that veer so far from the classic/iconic/most accepted versions that they aren’t the same character. Most Superman stories of the past few years could indeed be classed as #notmysuperman because the person they feature is so far from who Superman is that he’s nobody’s idea of the Man of Steel. Read the Tomasi Superman/Wonder Woman issues featuring the Parasite, for example, and tell me #notmysuperman isn’t the only sane response.

      Do we know what Miles Morales’ sales are these days? I hear no buzz. Bringing him into the MU – whatever that means these days – means he’s always going to be the Spidey of the secondary import, even though Peter isn’t himself. So long as there’s a Peter Parker in the same world who’s using the Spider-Man ID, Miles is strictly spare. Marvel should give him a new ID, something non-legacy with space to make his own legend.

  5. Layne May 3, 2016

    Sean Phillips was the model for Bad Night’s protagonist, I think. I know it’s assy of me (And I don’t have a problem with photo ref, honest!) but it’s come to the point with Phillips’ art that when I come to an image that seems/feels to be referenced, my brain just does a little *Ping!* and I get taken out of the story, even though I probably wouldn’t consciously be able to tell ref from non-ref in a non-blindfolded Pepsi Challenge scenario.

    • Dan Coyle May 5, 2016

      Having met Matt Fraction in the real world, I have no idea what the fuck Jeff is seeing in those panels. But we all see our white whales where they’re not.

  6. Jeff, Graeme: your chat about the Civil War Audi add reminded me of the way the Hostess advertisements used to work in the Marvel comics. I first noticed them while reading Kirby’s 2001 comics and I posted some thoughts on them here: http://leonkpow.tumblr.com/post/139201357889/oh-golden-sponge-cake-creamed-filling-i-was

    I found them fascinating for the way they tried to blend the comic book fantasy into the marketing fantasy while also trying to adhere to some seemingly Marvel-imposed story rules.

  7. Dan Coyle May 5, 2016

    I’m happy to report- well, I’m sure it’ll make Graeme happy- that I got back from Civil War last night, and it’s not a very good movie- it sort of trails off in the last third, and it’s got the same fundamental problem as Dawn of Justice did, though I can’t say more because it would spoil it.

    It’ll be a hit, because there are a lot of things to like, the action sequences are phenomenal, but it tries too hard and not hard enough to set up a status quo at the end I don’t quite buy. Is it a less optimistic film than Batman V Superman? Well, if you need to consider Batman V Superman optimistic, sure- after all, unlike Captain America and Iron Man, they settle their differences. Of course, one of them dies 20 minutes later. But the conflict at Civil War’s end just seems like it could be resolved by sitting down and talking, and not this status quo which reminds me and these are painful memories- of the aftermath of Civil War and the eternal spinning of wheels of Marvel creative that in many ways never really stopped, and likely won’t stop until Bendis and Brevoort leave.

    • Yeah, it wasn’t a flop (artistically) like Iron Man 2 or AoU, but Marvel movies do have a problem with the second installment from the same director. They shove so much on that guy’s shoulders and it trails off. The Russos managed to carry it, but the strain was showing. And the movie itself felt like it actually was a Winter Soldier part 2 movie shoved into the Civil War movie. Which lessened what both of those films could have been by themselves.

      Still, it’s not only the best looking Marvel movie, but actually a good action movie in itself. The way the characters fought shows off their personality, the action scenes weren’t mindless brawls, but set pieces.

      Also, when Sebastian Stan order some plumes he had a bit of a Moldavian accents and I felt represented.

  8. I think that a reason we’re not seeing another Sienkiewicz is because of Scott McCloud and to some extent to our whole modern design sensibility. He just is too an authoritative a voice on comics, especially on the fringes, from where someone like Sienkiewicz would come. People from animation or fine-arts or design looking to make comics would look at him and would be faced with his sometimes explicit but almost always implicit prioritization of clarity of image and clarity of sequence over anything else. So people run away from purposefully messy, oppressive, arresting art because they fear they would alienate readers by sacrificing clarity for tone or rhythm or sheer visual impact. And they wouldn’t be wrong.

    I think someone that’s following strongly in his footsteps is Sarah Horrocks and I sure am alienated by her works, no matter how admirable I find them.

    • Mike Loughlin May 11, 2016

      How did an idiosyncratic stylist like Bill Sienkiewicz work for Marvel? By starting out as a Neal Adams clone. There’s no way Shooter-era Marvel would have given the guy steady work if the Steadman & Peak influences were pronounced early on. Look at how they treated Tony Salmons- a Dr. Strange fill-in that sent Shooter into a fit then not much else.

      Sienkiewicz changed his style gradually, and it became popular enough to give him some traction. The beauty of his painting helped, especially as a way to attract readers to books drawn by a Frank Springer and Vince Coletta.

      I haven’t seen Marvel hire an artist who is as daring in recent years, but I haven’t seen much comic book art from the big 2 that breaks too many boundaries. The artists closest to Sienkiewicz who have found there way to those companies are JH Williams III, Jae Lee, and Mike del Mundo (I think that’s his name, the guy who drew the recent Elektra series). I find most big 2 comics kind of blah these days, partly because art has become so devalued (“we need the next issue ready for two weeks after this one. Let’s alternate Chris Bachalo with that guy who draws like everyone else.”) so I might be missing “the next Sienkiewicz.” I’m perfectly happy to find lots of great stuff popping up elsewhere.

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