Tony Stark’s Powerful Rod

Iron Man Noir #2


It’s been a long wait, but finally Iron Man Noir 2 pokes his head about the parapet and dashes out into the comic shops! Last time we left Mr Stark and Pepper Potts heading off to find Atlantis, pursued by some furious Nazis, so how have they fared this month eh? 

We kick things off this issue with Stark and Pepper aboard ‘The Lady Dorma’ yacht under Captain Namor, the stern and mysterious pirate commander, whose crew slit their ears so they resemble shark fins. The vessel is heading out from Spain into the atlantic searching for the sunken city of Atlantis, where a nice helpful bit of exposition from Stark to Pepper shows us how the Atlanteans had a powerful metal called Orichalcum which acted as an enormous superconductor, powering their great city. The center of the city held a temple, and inside this temple was a vast statue of Poseidon and his trident was made from Orichalcum. Sadly, the conductive nature of the metal played merry havoc with the oceans, and eventually caused a vortex which sucked the city under the waves. 

Thank goodness then, that Stark has an underwater submersible (the Happy Hogan) to travel down under the surface and locate the sunken city, much to everyone’s surprise. The orichalcum trident is located, captured, and they return to the Lady Dorma. But all is not well! They have been traced by the Nazis, and the Lady Dorma is sunk, apparently with Stark and his motley crew all aboard! What is their fate?! We will have to read next month to find out! Pow! 

It’s another absolutely riveting romp through 1940’s Marvel Universe, chock full of classic pulp scenarios from the stern captain Namor with his surprisingly swift and nimble craft, to the Jules Verne-esque diving bell which locates the vast sunken city, its everything a matinée adventure title needs to be. Theres more mysteries as to why the Nazi’s need the orichalcum, (to power some sinister technological juggernaut??) how Stark will survive being blown up with his dodgy ticker doing him no favours, and to the real mystery of where the hell is the Iron Man suit? 

The one downer this issue is the sad fact that the suit has still yet to make a proper appearance. We have caught a glimpse of it in action in the first issue, but only for a matter of pages. Hopefully we are building up to a balls-to-the-wall robotic smack down with Iron Man facing a Nazi robot in the final issue, (Iron Man vs. The Iron Cross, how bout that for a title!) but so far for a story called ‘Iron Man Noir’ we have seen very little of the titular character. Again the artwork is beautifully suited to the over-the-top adventure we are reading. From the moon lit deck of the pirate ship and her rum soaked crew, to the murky depths of the sunken Atlantis and its colossal tower of shipwrecks drawn to the staff of orichalcum, its got every element you need for a thrilling old-style adventure. This is the best Indiana Jones film never made. And judging by next months issue’s cover we are finally going to be getting a bit of robot Iron Man action! 

Iron Man meets Lead Zeppelin.

I love drunk pussys.

Achewood. Its online for free, because legally, they can't charge you to watch a cat get picked up by his package.

I’m trying something new here with this review, since for the first time ever I’m gonna talk about a comic series that you can actually read for free right now. Achewood is an online comic series that has been running since 2001, written and drawn by Chris Onstad. It features a collection of animals, and a couple of robots who live in a town called Achewood.

Its updated every 3 or 4 days, and its completely free to read! Though you can turn up and start reading the series right now, it’s probably better to either start at the beginning, or jump to a story line, easily found in the drop-down menu on the first page. Discussions in drawing rooms and pantrys up and down the nation have confirmed that ‘The Great Outdoor Fight’ is a good story to start with, and if you’re not a fan of reading comics online, this story arc is available in a lovely hardback edition for about a tenner, with a load of jolly extras!

So then, what the devil is it all about? Golly, its essentially about a group of friends who are either cats, or bears (but there is also a special little 5-year-old otter, Phillipe) who enjoy drinking, fine food, hanging out at their rich cat friend’s pool house and looking at the internet. It’s a comedy, with each strip being a little joke or sketch, but they all build up (usually) into a longer running theme or story event. If you like drawings of a cat wearing a thong, your gonna be into Achewood. There is also a tiger with a massive handlebar moustache who likes heavy metal, drinking Jack Daniels and being obnoxious to the elderly english bear he lives with (called Mr. Bear).

Todays Thought for the Day.

That cheerful chap above is Ray Smuckles, he is the ringleader of the gang, a rich entrepeneur, the brainchild behind ‘Chatsacks’ the fake rubber testicles you stick on your phone so it looks like your mobile has nuts. He hangs about all day wearing a black thong, and drinking, but he will occasionally wear a hat. As befitting an online weekly cartoon series, the illustration is all nice and simple line art, minimal shading and no colour, but that all adds to the silly charm.

I hope his nuts weren't loose.

So there we are! What more can be said about this series? It’s an absolute treat! And its free! So I’d recommend, more than any other comic I write about, check this one out. I read the whole lot from start to finish in one weekend, and I was chuckling out loud the whole time.

And if anyone out there is strong enough to pick me up by my cock and balls, please leave a comment with your contact details.

Dirty Little Secrets

I have a very funny caption for this picture, but it's a secret.


It’s been waaaay too long since my last post, so I’m fisting my way back in hard to this shriveled up hole of a blog with Secret Avengers #1! Oooh Boy!

Steve Rogers (the original Captain America) is now head of S.H.I.E.L.D., (the Strategic Hazard Intervention, Espionage Logistics Directorate) and that means he gets to swagger about kicking arse and wearing an awesome costume. And it also means he needs a super-secret squad of heroes who he can rely on to go on all the missions he can’t send the big-shot superhero teams on. When it’s not a villain in a mask who needs to be stopped, but a multi-national corporation or terrorist organisation, he needs to send in the Secret Avengers! And he makes it just about the coolest team I’ve ever seen.

First off we have Steve Rogers himself, a man who has actually punched Hitler in the face on the cover of his comic way back in 1941.

Little does Cap realise that Churchill has already given ol' Adolf an enormous wedgie.

Theres also War Machine, off of the Iron man film. And Moonknight, who is a nutcase who is driven by the egyptian spirit of vengeance, and the Black Widow, off of the Iron Man film, and Valkyrie who is a gosh-darned nordic goddess, and Beast off of the X-Men 3 film played by that one out of Frasier, and Ant-Man who can turn all small. It’s the most daft team-up of all time, and that’s why this book works so well. Each one of these characters is given their little moment to shine, and you suddenly realise that this is actually made up of the most competent and skilled heros in the whole of the Marvel universe. An example of just how cool this team is:-

BEAST (to Steve Rogers) :- “You have someone on this team who can just check out the planet Mars for us?”

STEVE ROGERS:- “Of course I do…..What kind of operation did you think I was running?”

And its true! The Secret Avengers actually have a proper intergalactic Guardian of the Galaxy on the team! This comic has it all, from sexy ladies all punching up special forces soldiers, to spaceships screaming through space, spys and black-clad secret organisations, and a twist at the end that made me whoop out loud on the train with excitement. (“Surely NOT!” I should have said to myself quietly, but instead I said out loud “FWOOO-COR!”)

And the artist on this comic is throwing his all into it. From every introduction scene were Steve rounds up his posse, each character is pictured in exactly the sort of epic, heroic, larger-than-life pose you expect of these people to be in, from standing on the ledge of a skyscraper with a vast cape billowing in the wind, to crashing through windows and summoning swords from mystical realms. Each panel is dripping in shadows and muted colours, since its mainly set at night, and about 50% is all flashback, but you do get big flashes of colour in uniforms or landscapes, and it is an absolute joy to behold. Marvel’s new ‘Heroic Age’  is finally telling stories that are just honest, pure, damned good fun. This comic has space ships in! And a secret villains base on Mars!!

This is exactly how comics should be done.

Published in: on May 27, 2010 at 10:03 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Gagging for some anal Hex

With fingers that red its gotta be that time of the month.

Yee-Ha! Ka-Pow! Its cowboy time! My absolutely most all-time favourite comic every month is Jonah Hex from DC Comics. Written for the last 55 issues by Justin Gray and Jimmy Palmiotti, they have a revolving artist for each issue, from Tony Dezuniga to Rafa Garres, who did that awesome cover to The Savage Axe of Ares! This week we have Vicente Alcazar, who I don’t believe has illustrated an issue before, but by jingo he does a jolly good job! 

Entitled ‘The Brief Life of Billy Dynamite’, this issue rattles along with typical western runnawaywagon style! The best thing about Jonah Hex is that each issue is a self-contained story, so there’s no deep continuity, and all you need to know is Jonah is a rough and tumble bounty hunter. He has death, and the acrid smell of gun-smoke as his only companions. And he has a mad scarred up half-face after a run in with a red-hot tomahawk at the hands of the apache tribe that raised him. And he still wears the uniform of the confederate army years after the civil war is over. 

But all you need to know about him this issue is that he was on his way to save a bar from a shoot-out. But he arrived 2 minutes too late. Sadly a 7-year-old child finds himself in charge of this rough-and-tumble western pub, and from then on in we get the rise and fall of the Black Mare Saloon. And 22 pages later we get a terrifically bloody explosive ending. 

One of the greatest treats about Jonah Hex is that every week we get a different type of story. Some weeks we get a murder mystery, other weeks its all-out action, the next its horror, and then after that we get a silent comedy caper. This week we get a Jonah Hex tale almost totally absent of the titular character. He remains a threatening presence over the whole issue, yet appears in less than 10 pages.And in those few pages he still remains a mystery, he manages to straddle that white picket fence of hero and villain. He remains a pissed up violent old bastard, yet in the end always manages to come out as a vague sort of heroic champion. And that’s why he is fucking awesome. 

The art in this issue is a bit hit and miss. The violence is captured fantastically, with bullets zipping through skulls left, right and center, yet sometimes the faces of characters suffer a bit from looking a little too simple, and it is really only the colour palette that brings them to life. That said, this is very much in the style of the early Jonah Hex comics from the 70’s, so it does add a touch of old-timey charm. Alcazar adds plenty of iconic western scenes, and certainly knows how to draw a good blood spray, so that is always a winner. All in all, this isn’t an absolutely fantastic issue of Jonah Hex, but it certainly is one that entertains, and is well worth a look.

Published in: on May 7, 2010 at 10:39 pm  Leave a Comment  
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The Brown Frown

In this comic his glass eye is made from magic, and it turns nice old ladies into Bigots.


In celebration of everyones favourite wally, here is the panel of Captain Britain and MI13 issue one from 2008, featuring the one and only Gordon Brown. He was helping save Britain from an alien invasion. Nice one Gordon!

Published in: on May 4, 2010 at 8:58 pm  Leave a Comment  
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