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Paris by Andi Watson & Simon Gane
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Paris by Andi Watson & Simon Gane

I read this for almost entirely extraneous reasons, if that matters.

I’d seen the original edition of Paris  when it was first published, and wrote about it for ComicMix. (Be careful with that link; much of ComicMix’s back catalog seems to have been infested with hijackers, and there may be malware lurking about.) I vaguely knew that there was a newer, slightly longer edition, and had a perhaps even more vague idea of reading it, eventually, since I’ve been re-reading Andi Watson’s books over the last few years.

This is written by Watson, by the way, but the art is by Simon Gane. It’s the only time they’ve collaborated so far; Watson usually draws his own books. (Though they do have a new book together, Sunburn, coming up this fall.)

None of that is why I read Paris. And, looking back, it’s completely random that I did read it, only five days after this new edition was released.

I was browsing through Hoopla, the app my library uses, trying to find something to read that day. I’d just come back from a movie The Wife dragged me to. Now, it was not a bad movie, in any sense, but it was predictable and obvious and thuddingly normalizing in all sorts of ways: a well-executed thing that I didn’t mind watching but cared almost exactly nothing about. So I wanted something of a palate cleanser: something like that in superficial outlines, but more subtle, with better storytelling, and maybe something subversive about it. To be blunt, something with a bit of romance, maybe set in Paris in the 1950s, maybe without a moral of “common people are magical beings who make everyone’s lives better with their cheeky clear-headedness”.

Thus Paris. My original review covers the story (assuming you can navigate the “click Allow now!” pop-ups to read it): young American painter Juliet is in Paris, studying at the Academie de Stael in genteel poverty. Young British heiress Deborah is also in Paris, chaperoned by her horrible Aunt Chapman and having the most boring time possible in that city.

Juliet is hired to paint Deborah; they have a spark. Circumstances intervene to snuff out that spark, possibly before many readers have realized it is a spark, and not just a friendship. Will they meet again, and re-connect?

That’s the story. There’s some additional complications, such as Juliet’s lusty roommate Paulette and Deborah’s swishy brother Billy, but it’s a story about these two women, and whether they can manage to get together despite everything.

Gane has a very detailed style, that, to my eye, is influenced by both mid-century illustration and the lanky grace of high fashion. I don’t know if he always draws like this, but it’s a lovely choice for this story, making the City of Light a place of glamor and bustling life, real in its own way but idealized, the perfect vision of a romantic city of the past.

Like most of Watson’s work, the story here is low-key; you need to pay attention. It also helps to know a little French, since some phrases are untranslated until a set of notes at the end. But they’re all clear in context to readers who do pay attention.

The first time around, I thought of Paris as minor Watson, but I’ve revised that estimation upwards this time around. Gane’s art adds something unique and wonderful, and Watson is at his most subtle and allusive here, trusting his readers to see this story and not need to be told everything. You may need to read Paris twice to properly love it, but you don’t need to wait fifteen years between readings as I did.

Reposted from The Antick Musings of G.B.H. Hornswoggler, Gent.

Jordan Peele’s Nope to Scare you at Home
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Jordan Peele’s Nope to Scare you at Home

Universal City, California, September 13, 2022 – Oscar®-winning filmmaker Jordan Peele (Get Out, Us) unleashes his latest spine-tingling thriller with NOPE, a mysterious sci-fi pop nightmare available to own for the first time as a Collector’s Edition on Digital September 20, 2022 and on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray and DVD on October 25, 2022 from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment. Certified Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes, this “spellbinder that keeps pushing boundaries” (Peter Travers, ABC News) will have you never looking at clouds the same way ever again. The exclusive Collector’s Edition comes filled with more than 90 minutes of never-before-seen bonus content, including a revealing documentary that dives deep into the film’s rich DNA and Peele’s extraordinary vision; an exploration into the conception, design and execution of entity “Jean Jacket”; deleted scenes, a gag reel and more taking audiences behind the scenes of the out-of-this-world adventure. 
 
Featuring an incredibly talented and dynamic ensemble cast, NOPE is written, directed and produced by Jordan Peele and showcases outstanding performances by Oscar® winner Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out, Judas and the Black Messiah), Emmy® Award winner Keke Palmer (Hustlers, Scream Queens), Oscar® nominee Steven Yeun (Minari, The Walking Dead), Michael Wincott (Basquiat, What Just Happened) and breakout star Brandon Perea (The OA).
 
Jordan Peele reimagines the summer movie with NOPE, an expansive epic of uncanny science fiction. Following their father’s shocking death, Hollywood animal wrangler OJ (Kaluuya) and his sister Emerald (Palmer) begin observing unexplained phenomena on their vast Southern California ranch that leads them down an obsessive rabbit hole as they plot attempts to capture the mystery on camera. Along with a former child star turned family theme park ringmaster (Yeun) who neighbors the siblings, the pair’s efforts to chase the spectacle soon bring terrifying consequences and unimaginable horror. The result is a complex social thriller that unpacks the seeds of violence, risk and opportunism that are inseparable from the romanticized history of the American West … and from show business itself.
 
With the purchase of NOPE on digital or disc, fans are eligible to earn points towards digital movies via the Universal All-Access Rewards program. Members can redeem their points for digital movies, swag and more!  For registration and details please visit www.MyUniversalRewards.com.
 
EXCLUSIVE BONUS FEATURES ON 4K UHD, BLU-RAYTM, DVD & DIGITAL:

  • SHADOWS: THE MAKING OF NOPE* – Unpack the meaning of NOPE with Jordan Peele. Secrets are revealed with this 56-minute immersion exploring the film’s unanswered questions, taking you on an intimate journey inside every aspect of production and offering a detailed look at Peele’s revolutionary filmmaking process.
  • DELETED SCENES – Watch five unreleased scenes from NOPE
  • GAG REEL – A highlight reel of bloopers and outtakes featuring main cast
  • CALL HIM JEAN JACKET – The object of the Haywood siblings’ fascination is an entity known only as “Jean Jacket.” Filmmakers provide insights into the conception, design, and execution of this mysterious organism.
  • MYSTERY MAN OF MUYBRIDGE – A deep dive into THE HORSE IN MOTION by Eadweard Muybridge, its relationship to the Haywoods, and how it relates to the larger themes in NOPE.
    *Not on DVD 

FILMMAKERS:
Cast: Daniel Kaluuya, Keke Palmer, Steven Yeun, Michael Wincott, Brandon Perea
Casting By: Carmen Cuba CSA
Music By: Michael Abels
Editor: Nicholas Monsour
Production Designer: Ruth De Jong
Director of Photography: Hoyte Van Hoytema ASC, FSC, NSC
Executive Producers: Robert Graf, Win Rosenfeld
Produced By: Ian Cooper p.g.a.
Written, Produced, and Directed By: Jordan Peele

TECHNICAL INFORMATION 4K UHD:
Street Date: October 25, 2022
Selection Number: 1000816017 (US) / 1000816025 (CDN)
Layers: BD 100
Aspect Ratio: 2.20:1 and 1.78:1 (Enhanced Aspect Ratio)
Rating: R for language throughout and some violence/ bloody images
Languages/Subtitles: English, French Canadian and Latin American Spanish
Sound: English (Dolby Atmos for Feature and Dolby Digital 2.0 for Bonus Content), French Canadian (Dolby Digital 5.1), Latin American Spanish (Dolby Digital Plus 7.1)
Run Time: 2 hours 10 minutes

TECHNICAL INFORMATION BLU-RAYTM:
Street Date: October 25, 2022
Selection Number: 1000816016 (US) / 1000816024 (CDN)
Layers: BD 50
Aspect Ratio: 2.20:1 and 1.78:1 (Enhanced Aspect Ratio)
Rating: R for language throughout and some violence/ bloody images
Languages/Subtitles: English, French Canadian and Latin American Spanish
Sound: English (Dolby Atmos for Feature and Dolby Digital 2.0 for Bonus Content), French Canadian (Dolby Digital 5.1), Latin American Spanish (Dolby Digital Plus 7.1)
Run Time: 2 hours 10 minutes

TECHNICAL INFORMATION DVD:
Street Date: October 25, 2022
Selection Number: 1000816015 (US) / 1000816023 (CDN)
Layers: DVD 9
Aspect Ratio: 2.20:1 and 1.78:1 (Enhanced Aspect Ratio)
Rating: R for language throughout and some violence/ bloody images
Languages/Subtitles: English, French Canadian and Latin American Spanish
Sound: English (Dolby Digital 5.1 for Feature and Dolby Digital 2.0 for Bonus Content), French Canadian (Dolby Digital 5.1), Latin American Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Run Time: 2 hours 10 minutes

Zendaya’s Amazing Work in Euphoria Finally Comes to Disc
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Zendaya’s Amazing Work in Euphoria Finally Comes to Disc

BURBANK, CA (September 14, 2022) – HBO’s mind-blowing drama series is coming to DVD on November 1, 2022, from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment. The 5-Disc set features all 16 one-hour episodes from Seasons 1 and 2, plus the 2 special episodes that bridge seasons 1 and 2. With over two hours of bonus content that goes behind the scenes of the series for the ultimate fan, Euphoria: Seasons 1-2 is priced to own at $39.99 SRP for the DVD ($44.98 in Canada). The series is also available to own on Digital via purchase from digital retailers and to stream on HBO Max.

Multimedia superstar Zendaya stars in this drama series that follows a group of high-school students as they navigate a mine field of drugs, sex, identity, trauma, social media, love and friendship in today’s increasingly unstable world.

The first season of Euphoria won three Emmy® Awards, and season twoearned six Emmy® Awards. By winning Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series for both seasons, Zendaya made history as the youngest two-time acting winner in Emmys history. Both seasons earned Emmy®  nominations for Outstanding Drama Series.

The series stars Emmy®-winner Zendaya, Hunter Schafer, Nika King, Eric Dane, Angus Cloud, Jacob Elordi, Algee Smith, Sydney Sweeney, Alexa Demie, Barbie Ferreira, Maude Apatow, Javon Walton, Dominic Fike, Storm Reid, and Austin Abrams.

Created and written by Sam Levinson, who also serves as executive producer; executive producers Kevin Turen, Ravi Nandan, Drake, Adel “Future” Nur, Zendaya, Will Greenfield, Ashley Levinson, Hadas Mozes Lichtenstein, Ron Leshem, Daphna Levin, Gary Lennon, Mirit Toovi, Tmira Yardeni, Yoram Mokady; Kenneth Yu and Harrison Kreiss serve as producers; Michael Carroll, Julio Perez, and Jeremy O. Harris are Co-Producers. Produced in partnership with A24. and based on the Israeli series of the same name, which was created by Ron Leshem and Daphna Levin, from HOT.

SPECIAL FEATURES

  • Euphoria in Conversation: Zendaya and Sam Levinson
  • Storyboard to Scene
  • Euphoria Scene Breakdown
  • Euphoria Unfiltered: Zendaya
  • Enter Euphoria Part 1: Rue
  • Enter Euphoria Part 2: Jules
  • Euphoria: The Craft
  • Costumes of Euphoria
  • Enter Euphoria
  • Euphoria: Set Tour with Sydney Sweeney 

18 ONE HOUR EPISODES

Season 1

  1. Pilot
  2. Stuntin’ Like My Daddy
  3. Made You Look
  4. Shook Ones Part II
  5. ’03 Bonnie & Clyde
  6. The Next Episode
  7. The Trials and Tribulations of Trying to Pee When Depressed
  8. And Salt the Earth Behind You

Special Episodes:

  1. Trouble Don’t Last Always
  2. F**k Anyone Who’s Not A Sea Blob

Season 2:

  1. Trying to Get Into Heaven Before They Close the Door
  2. Out of Touch
  3. Ruminations: Big & Little Bullies
  4. You Cannot See, Think of Those Who Can
  5. Standing Still Like the Hummingbird
  6. A Thousand Little Trees of Blood
  7. The Theater and Its Double
  8. 8All My Life, I Have Yearned For A Thing I Cannot Name

DIGITAL

Euphoria is currently available to own on Digital. Digital purchase allows consumers to instantly stream and download to watch anywhere and anytime on their favorite devices. Digital movies and TV shows are available from various digital retailers including Prime Video, Apple TV, Google Play, Vudu and others.

BASICS

Release Date: November 1, 2022

Presented in 16×9 widescreen format

Running Time – Feature: Approx. 1080 mins

Running Time – Extra Content: Approx. 2 hrs, 10 min

DVD Prices: $39.99 SRP ($44.98 in Canada)

5 Discs (5 DVD-9s)

Audio: English (5.1)

Subtitles: ESDH

Casablanca to Shine in 80th Anniversary 4K Debut
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Casablanca to Shine in 80th Anniversary 4K Debut

BURBANK, Calif., September 13, 2022 – Celebrating the 80th anniversary of its 1942 release, the legendary Warner Bros. film Casablanca will be released on Ultra HD Blu-ray Combo Pack and Digital on November 8, it was announced today by Warner Bros. Home Entertainment. Starring Academy Award winners Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman, critic Leonard Maltin calls Casablanca “the best Hollywood movie of all time.”

The winner of three Academy Awards® including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay, Casablanca was directed by Michael Curtiz (Captain Blood, Mildred Pierce, White Christmas) from a screenplay by Julius J. Epstein, Philip G. Epstein, and Howard Koch. The screenplay is based on “Everybody Comes to Rick’s”, an unproduced stage play by Murray Burnett and Joan Alison.  The film was produced by Hal B. Wallis (The Adventures of Robin Hood, The Maltese Falcon, True Grit).

The cast also features Paul Henreid, Claude Rains, Conrad Veidt, Sydney Greenstreet, Peter Lorre, and Dooley Wilson.

Casablanca was voted the screen’s greatest love story and the #3 film of all time by the American Film Institute (AFI). The classic wartime romance also took Oscars® for Michael Curtiz (Directing); Julius J. Epstein, Philip G. Epstein and Howard Koch (Writing – Screenplay) and the studio (Outstanding Motion Picture).

In 1989, the United States Library of Congress selected the film as one of the first for preservation in the National Film Registry for being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.”

The new Casablanca 4K Ultra High-Definition image was restored and remastered from a 2022 4K 16bit film scan of the best-surviving nitrate film elements. The 4K-scanned digital images went through an extensive digital restoration process to clean and repair the picture for an unprecedented and pristine ultra-high-resolution presentation.  The restored images were then graded in High Dynamic Range for today’s premium 4K display experience, providing the highest fidelity in image contrast and detail retention.  This work was meticulously handled by Warner Bros. Motion Picture Imaging.  The original theatrical mono audio has also been newly restored as well, providing a richer and broader frequency response than previously possible.

Ultra HD* showcases 4K resolution with High Dynamic Range (HDR) and a wider color spectrum, offering consumers brighter, deeper, more lifelike colors for a home entertainment viewing experience like never before.   

Casablanca will be available on Ultra HD Blu-ray Combo Pack for $24.99 ERP and includes an Ultra HD Blu-ray disc with the feature film in 4K with HDR and a Digital download of the film. Fans can also own Casablanca in 4K Ultra HD via purchase from select digital retailers beginning on 11/8/22.  
About the Film
Casablanca: easy to enter, but much harder to leave, especially if you’re wanted by the Nazis. Such a man is Resistance leader Victor Laszlo (Paul Henreid), whose only hope is Rick Blaine (Humphrey Bogart), a cynical American who sticks his neck out for no one – especially Victor’s wife Ilsa (Ingrid Bergman), the ex-lover who broke his heart. Ilsa offers herself in exchange for Laszlo’s transport out of the country and bitter Rick must decide what counts more – personal happiness or countless lives hanging in the balance.

Casablanca Ultra HD Blu-ray disc, Blu-ray disc and Digital contain the following previously released special features:

  • Commentary by Roger Ebert
  • Commentary by Rudy Behlmer
  • Introduction by Lauren Bacall

Casablanca Blu-ray disc and Digital contain the following previously released special features:

  • Warner Night at the Movies
    • Now, Voyager trailer
    • Newsreel
    • Vaudeville Days (1942 WB short)
    • The Bird Came C.O.D. (1942 WB cartoon)
    • The Squawkin’ Hawk (1942 WB cartoon)
    • The Dover Boys at Pimento University (1942 WB cartoon)
  • Great Performances: Bacall on Bogart (1988 PBS special)
  • Michael Curtiz: The Greatest Director You’ve Never Heard Of
  • Casablanca: An Unlikely Classic
  • You Must Remember This: A Tribute to Casablanca (1992 TEC documentary)
  • As Time Goes By: The Children Remember
  • Deleted Scenes
  • Outtakes
  • Who Holds Tomorrow? (1955 “Casablanca” TV episode)
  • Carrotblanca (1955 WB Cartoon)
  • Scoring Stage Sessions (audio only)
  • Lady Esther Screen Guild Theater Radio Broadcast – 4/26/43 (audio only)
  • Vox Pop Radio Broadcast – 11/19/47 (audio only)
  • Trailers

BASICS
Ultra HD Blu-ray:  $24.99*                 
Standard Street Date: 11/8/22
EST Street Date: 11/8/22
Ultra HD Blu-ray Languages: English, Spanish, French
Ultra HD Blu-ray Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, Parisian French
Run Time: 102 minutes

Girl by Peter Milligan and Duncan Fegredo
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Girl by Peter Milligan and Duncan Fegredo

There’s all kinds of ways to build a creative program, but the two big ones are to follow a specific editorial plan (superhero comics, TV shows for teens & twentysomethings, R&B music) or to work with a curated group of popular creators and let them do their thing.

The first is most common; you tend to see the second in more highbrow media areas, like prestige publishing imprints and classical music…and, maybe, that means they’re already in a sub-genre, but just don’t like to think of themselves that way.

In the ’90s, DC Comics’ Vertigo imprint was undergoing a slow-motion transformation. It formed out of a cluster of very popular comics that were mostly Type One (superhero comics taken seriously!) but were often presented to the public as Type Two (all British writers! all the time!). But the core superhero universe was on its own path to take itself seriously, in a very different and much more tedious way (pouches! grimdark! no captions!), and the premise of Vertigo was being undermined by that, and by the relentless demand for ever-more-complex and ever-more-consistent continuity everywhere.

I don’t know if Vertigo was consciously looking for a new Type One structure, but they eventually found it in High Concepts, SF and fantastic premises (Fables, Ex Machina, Preacher, Y: The Last Man) that were roughly Classy Television in comics form, typically owned by their creators rather than being sharecropped superheroes, and featuring enough FX that they wouldn’t have been feasible in a filmed medium. It took a while to get there, though, so the ’90s are an interesting period for Vertigo, full of quirky sub-imprints (Vertigo Visions! Vertigo Voices! Vertigo Verite! V2K! Vertigo Pop!), as the editorial team tried to figure out what their remit was and what kind of books they could do that would also be hugely successful.

Girl  was in the middle of that searching: part of the Vertigo Verite burst, it was a three-issue miniseries from 1996 that I don’t think actually got collected until this 2020 edition. Written by Peter Milligan, one of the core Vertigo writers (launch title Shade and a bunch of shorter-run things) and drawn by Duncan Fegredo, the same team from the three-years-earlier Enigma .

It’s not a superhero comic. It’s not fantasy or SF, either: pure realistic drama. And, despite the first issue feinting hard in the direction of “I’ll tell you something crazy, and then tell you what was really going on,” it settles down quickly to a more-reliable narrator, maybe because Milligan realized he only had seventy-two pages or so to tell the whole story. Or maybe not: there are some things here that are “real” at the time but retroactively not, or maybe vice versa.

Simone Cundy is a fifteen-year-old British girl, living in a crappy town (neighborhood? city?) she calls Bollockstown. She’s one of those smart, prematurely cynical kids, and was born into a lower-class family happy to live up to all of the stereotypes. She, though, wants to Change the World, or at least Get Out. Or maybe just Do Something.

She’s fifteen, living in an urban hellhole (at least: that’s how she sees it. Everything here is how she sees it). So it makes sense.

Girl is the story of some stuff that happens to her. It’s psychological realistic, though not necessarily realistic in the pure, kitchen-sink sense. It’s pretty weird, I mean: not weird in the Weird Tales sense, but weird in the “weird kid” sense. Simone is a weird kid – I should say a weird young woman, since her story is largely about sex and death, as such stories often are.

I’m not convinced her story is entirely successful: there seem to be several warring story-structures that pop in and out of place as we go along, and it sprawls an awful lot for something less than eighty pages long. Also, Simone is very much a type, and that type was all over the place in that era: the depressed semi-Goth girl was as common as salt-water taffy for about a decade and a half.

And I’m not going to be any more descriptive about the things that happen to her, or that she causes: if you read this, you should discover them as you go.

Simone has a fun voice, even if it’s a very familiar voice of the era. And this is a short book. So you might as well read it, if any of the above sounds intriguing: the Vertigo transition, the Goth-chick vibe, the weird story structures, the heavily-captioned style that was quickly going away by 1996.

Reposted from The Antick Musings of G.B.H. Hornswoggler, Gent.

Doom Patrol: The Complete Third Season Coming in November
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Doom Patrol: The Complete Third Season Coming in November

BURBANK, CA (September 13, 2022) – DC’s unlikeliest group of Super Heroes are back as Warner Bros. Home Entertainment gets set to release DOOM PATROL: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON  on November 25, 2022.Featuring all 10 explosive episodes from the third season with all-new bonus features DOOM PATROL: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON is priced to own for $24.98 SRP for DVD and $29.98 for Blu-ray, which includes a Digital Copy. The show is also available to own on Digital via purchase from all major digital retailers.

DC’s unlikeliest group of Super Heroes, the Doom Patrol, are ready to save the world… kind of. After suffering horrific accidents that gave them superhuman abilities, Cliff Steele aka Robotman (Brendan Fraser), Larry Trainor aka Negative Man (Matt Bomer), Rita Farr aka Elasti-Woman (April Bowlby), Jane aka Crazy Jane (Diane Guerrero), and Victor Stone aka Cyborg (Joivan Wade) were each left scarred, disfigured, and ostracized – until scientist Dr. Niles Caulder (Timothy Dalton) brings the outcasts together to treat and protect them. Gritty and irreverent, Doom Patrol follows this part support group, part superhero team as they take on evil, otherworldly forces determined to destroy humankind – even if it wants nothing to do with them

A reimagining of one of DC’s most beloved groups of Super Heroes, season three has a 100% approval rating on the Rotten Tomatometer. The third season of Doom Patrol opens with Niles Caulder’s “super” daughter Dorothy’s confrontation with the Candlemaker that leads to a devastating loss. The Doom Patrol is at a difficult crossroads and each member struggles to face who they are and who they want to be. And things get a whole lot more complicated when Madame Rouge (Michelle Gomez) arrives in a time machine with a very specific mission, if only she could remember it.​

The series is produced by Berlanti Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television with Jeremy Carver, Geoff Johns, Greg Berlanti, Sarah Schechter, Chris Dingess and Tamara Becher-Wilkinson serving as executive producers. The series is based on characters created for DC by Arnold Drake, Bob Haney and Bruno Premiani. Doom Patrol has been renewed for a fourth season on HBO Max.

DOOM PATROL: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON BLU-RAY & DVD SPECIAL FEATURES

  • DOOM PATROL SEASON 3: LIFE AFTER DEATH (All-New Featurette) – Going inside season 3 of Doom Patrol with an in-depth look at all the mayhem and madness that follows on the heels of Niles Caulder’s death. Showrunner Jeremy Carver and the cast of the series discuss the loss of Niles, new beginnings, awakenings and new journeys in a unique way.
  • FILTER NOT INCLUDED: ROBOTMAN’S BEST LINES (All-New Featurette) – He may be mostly machinery but one thing Robotman does not have is a filter. As The Doom Patrol’s most foul-mouthed robot/grandfather, Cliff Steele never holds back exactly what he’s thinking.
  • Digging Deep Into Doom Patrol: Introducing Madame Rouge – The Doom Patrol is at a difficult crossroads and things get a whole lot more complicated when Madame Rouge (Michelle Gomez) arrives in a time machine with a very specific mission, if only she could remember it.
  • This Season On – The Doom Patrol: Robotman aka Cliff Steele, Negative Man aka Larry Trainor, Elasti-Woman aka Rita Farr, Crazy Jane and Cyborg aka Victor Stone, are at a crossroads as each member struggles to face who they are and who they want to be.

10 ONE-HOUR EPISODES

  1. Possibilities Patrol
  2. Vacay Patrol
  3. Dead Patrol
  4. Undead Patrol
  5. Dada Patrol
  6. 1917 Patrol
  7. Bird Patrol
  8. Subconscious Patrol
  9. Evil Patrol
  10. Amends Patrol

DIGITAL

Doom Patrol: The Complete Third Season is currently available to own on Digital. Digital purchase allows consumers to instantly stream and download to watch anywhere and anytime on their favorite devices. Digital movies and TV shows are available from various digital retailers including Prime Video, Apple TV, Google Play, Vudu and others.

 BASICS

Doom Patrol: The Complete Third Season

Street Date: November 15, 2022

Running Time: Approx. 528 minutes 

Enhanced Content: Approx. 26 minutes

BD

Price: $29.98 SRP

BD Audio: English (5.1)

DVD

Price: $24.98 SRP

DVD Audio: English (5.1)

Top Gun 2-Movie Steelbook Superfan Collection Coming for in time for Holiday Shopping
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Top Gun 2-Movie Steelbook Superfan Collection Coming for in time for Holiday Shopping

The #1 film of 2022, with over $1.4 billion at the global box office, and the original pop culture touchstone that helped define a generation come together in one must-own set, the TOP GUN 2-MOVIE 4K STEELBOOK SUPERFAN COLLECTION, arriving on December 6, 2022 from Paramount Home Entertainment. 

This highly collectible release makes an ideal gift and boasts nearly six hours of bonus content exploring the enduing popularity of the 1986 sensation TOP GUN, as well as this year’s record-breaking global phenomenon TOP GUN: MAVERICK.  Celebrate the films that have captured the imaginations of fans around the world through behind-the-scenes footage, interviews with Tom Cruise and producer Jerry Bruckheimer, and much more.

The TOP GUN 2-MOVIE 4K STEELBOOK SUPERFAN COLLECTION includes two SteelBook cases with both 4K Ultra HD and Blu-ray Discs™ of TOP GUN and TOP GUN: MAVERICK, access to Digital copies of each film, plus TOP GUN: MAVERICK dog tags, a leather “Maverick” keyring, magnetic decals, coasters and photos.

TOP GUN bonus content is as follows:
•    Commentary by producer Jerry Bruckheimer, director Tony Scott, co-screenwriter Jack Epps, Jr., and naval experts
•    The Legacy of Top Gun
•    On Your Six – Thirty Years of Top Gun
•    Danger Zone: The Making of Top Gun
•    Multi-Angle Storyboards with Optional Commentary by director Tony Scott
•    Best of the Best: Inside the Real Top Gun
•    Music Videos
•    Original Theatrical Promotional Material

TOP GUN: MAVERICK bonus content is as follows:
•    Cleared for Takeoff
•    Breaking New Ground – Filming Top Gun: Maverick
•    A Love Letter to Aviation
•    Forging the Darkstar
•    Masterclass with Tom Cruise – Cannes Film Festival
•    Music Videos

TOP GUN
Directed by Tony Scott
U.S. rating: PG
 
TOP GUN: MAVERICK
Directed by Joseph Kosinski
U.S. rating: PG-13 for sequences of intense action, and some strong language

Black Hammer/Justice League: Hammer of Justice! by Jeff Lemire, Michael Walsh & Nate Piekos
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Black Hammer/Justice League: Hammer of Justice! by Jeff Lemire, Michael Walsh & Nate Piekos

In the life of every licensed superhero comic, there will come an especially blessed day: Baby’s First Crossover.

This, my dear hearts and gentle people, is that blessed event for the unnamed super-team of Jeff Lemire’s Black Hammer comics. [1] (See here for the previous volume and here for the first volume, if you’re unfamiliar.) Oh, you may quibble that they have already met quite a lot of other superheroes and villains, fighting and teaming up and generating a lot of Licensable Content. But all of those previous encounters were from Lemire’s universe as well; those calls were all coming from inside the house.

For the first time here, someone else deigned to have a play-date with Black Hammer, to let their toys play with the Black Hammer toys, to touch the dolls’ faces together to make them kiss. Those heroes are the current Justice League, the someone is DC Comics, and it is a bit like Barbie and GI Joe in the hands of an hyperactive eight-year-old.

The story is Black Hammer/Justice League: Hammer of Justice!, possibly the laziest possible title for this story. (The exclamation point might have taken a moment of thought; thus the “possibly.”) It’s written by Lemire with art by Michael Walsh and colors by Nate Piekos; I imagine someone on the DC side kibitzed editorially to keep the JL on-brand as well.

Amusingly to me, the Black Hammer gang are still their core ’80s incarnations while the JL is the current (I think) modern incarnations. Sure, separate universes don’t need to line up their timelines exactly, but wouldn’t it be more fun if Lemire had used the contemporaneous bwa-ha-ha era League? Or, possibly even better, the Detroit League? Ah, well.

In any case, the plot is the usual: a Mysterious Someone appears to both teams in their normal milieu (the BH gang grumping on the farm; the JL punching Starro) and swaps their places for making-mischief reasons. In a twist that is never explained, the JL immediately believe they’ve been on the farm for ten years, and mope about that, but the BH gang are aware of actual reality and spend most of their time squabbling with other Justice Leaguers.

The plot from there is…well, there’s that squabbling and moping, which takes up a lot of pages, then the inevitable Reveal of the Mysterious Someone, which is played up big but is one of the few obvious candidates and doesn’t really lead to anything, then, finally, as the play-date is ending, all of the dolls need to go back into their respective boxes separately, so they can stay in mint condition for the collector’s market. Lemire does throw out what may be a hook for another story, but it would need to be another DC Crossover, so let’s hope he gets good grades in school and does all his chores, so maybe there will be another play-date.

At the end of the book, we get what seems to be thirty pages of variant covers for the five issues of this miniseries, and I have nothing coherent to say about that.

I cannot take a single thing about Black Hammer seriously for a second, even while reading it. It is so deeply pastiche that there’s nothing substantial about it. If you are less cynical about superhero comics than I am, you may enjoy this on a more normal level. But it’s well-done – the characters talk like human beings and are drawn in a solid modern style – so it amusing on whatever level you can connect to it on. Black Hammer is not bad; it’s never been bad. It’s just deeply pointless and creepily incestuous.

[1] Black Hammer was a guy; he’s dead now. His daughter later becomes the new Black Hammer, and another woman who looks very much like her becomes another version a hundred years later. And I think there was one before the main guy, but Lemire hasn’t told any stories with the old dead one yet. This is superhero comics; names are just trademarks, and trademarks have to be used or they will be lost.

The team, on the other hand, has no trademark, no identity, since they’re drafting on the Black Hammer name and it’s far too late to create something new now, ten books in.

Reposted from The Antick Musings of G.B.H. Hornswoggler, Gent.

Bionic by Koren Shadmi
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Bionic by Koren Shadmi

Victor is a geeky teenager, mildly bullied by the jockish types at his high school – but also smart and skilled enough to be rebuilding old game consoles to make a serious side income. He’s obsessed with Patricia (Patty), who is gorgeous and rich and blonde, in the way of a million boys before him, and has about as much chance as they do.

Maybe less of a chance, since I’d estimate nearly 5% of the panels of Koren Shadmi’s graphic novel Bionic  are of Victor looking at something, usually Patty, and if he’s not gaping open-mouthed and frozen every time, well, he’s close to it. This is very much a book from the point of view of a tentative young man who doesn’t know what to do, what to say, or even what he actually wants. It’s full of moments of Victor’s confusion and indecision and longing and desire: those moments are the core of the book.

There’s more to Bionic than that, of course, as the title and cover imply. Victor and Patty have an almost-relationship: they sit together for at least one class (this isn’t clear) and he adopts a pet from the shop where she works. That’s probably where it would have stayed, with Victor whining to his friend Gus about his crush and Patty getting deeper into her relationship with probably-not-as-much-of-an-asshole-as-he-seems Brian.

But then something happens.

Patty’s father is CEO of a tech company, and…you see that cover? That’s Patty, after the something that happens. Hence the title. She’s suddenly not as popular as she was: Brian isn’t interested in a half-robot girl, and her former BFF is now a queen bee angling for him and being casually cruel to Patty. But, then: these are all teenagers. They are casually cruel in any case, all of them, almost all of the time. Maybe they will outgrow it eventually, some of them.

There are other layers, but that’s the core: cruel teenagers, body transformation, sexual desire, with a bit of technological and capitalist paranoia lurking around the edges. Victor and Patty are both difficult people to like: Victor is horribly passive and whiny; Patty is oblivious before her change and horribly moody afterward. This could have been the story of how two imperfect people helped each other, but that’s not the story Shadmi wants to tell here: it’s much more conventional than that, with Patty as the figure of lust (in spite of her bionics? or, for Victor, even more so because of her bionics?) and Victor as the perpetually yearning horny teen boy.

There are a lot of conventional elements here, I have to admit. I haven’t even mentioned Patty’s relationship with her father, which checks off a couple of clichés by itself. The SF elements are equally as shopworn as the teen-crush plot, though both are handled subtly and well. But if you think you’ve seen this story before, you probably have – it’s that kind of story.

Shadmi has a soft art style, mostly mid-range colors (maybe with colored pencils?) over mostly thin, not overly dark lines. His people are a bit cartoony: the boys, especially the geeky boys, more so than the girls. Or maybe I mean the attractive people are less cartoony.

I don’t think Bionic is as new or different or interesting as perhaps it wanted to be, or thought it is. But it’s a solid story, set in the intersection of teen-drama and SF, that uses its familiar elements solidly and has a lot to admire.

Reposted from The Antick Musings of G.B.H. Hornswoggler, Gent.

Little Nothings, Vol. 3: Uneasy Happiness by Lewis Trondheim
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Little Nothings, Vol. 3: Uneasy Happiness by Lewis Trondheim

If I wanted to be dismissive, I’d describe this book as collecting daily watercolor comics pages about French cartoonist Lewis Trondheim’s vacations in 2007.

And that’s not untrue, but it misses the point. The whole Little Nothings series, as far as I can tell, is about quotidian life: small moments in a day that are interesting or evocative or representative. Trondheim didn’t seem to do this diary comic every day, and I haven’t seen any explanation of when he did do it. My guess is that he did it when he wasn’t working on something else: in between other projects, on vacations or trips to comics festivals or just random days at home. Maybe because he did these in small notebooks, so they traveled more easily than his usual art setup; maybe for entirely different reasons.

In any case, he stopped doing these a good decade ago – again, for a reason I don’t know. There were seven books of the series in French, as Les petits riens, and four of them were translated into English. This here is the third one, Uneasy Happiness . I read all four back around the time they were published, lost them all in my 2011 flood, and recently went back to get new copies of The Curse of the Umbrella  and The Prisoner Syndrome .

There’s not a lot to say about the substance of diary comics: each page is a moment in a particular day. Trondheim does regularly construct sequences, especially when he’s somewhere warm on a holiday, but those are 2-5 pages at most, loosely linked with the same concerns, each one again a specific moment or interaction on a different day. It’s like anyone’s life: some things recur, or make us remember what happened yesterday, or we see the same things and have the same thoughts again and again.

Trondheim’s art is quick but assured: I get the sense he did these without fussing about them, and he mostly doesn’t go in for serious page layouts – just individual vignette panels, unbordered, almost scattered across the page, with lines that are never quite straight (I don’t think Trondheim has ever used straightedges or cared about being precise and level) and colors built on top of them.

In this book, Trondheim travels to Italy, Portugal, Reunion Island, and Fiji (including what seems to be some other islands in the same region of the Pacific), as well as Paris and some other destinations within France. He rarely explains why he’s going anywhere – the Angouleme festival each year is obvious, but mostly he’s just off somewhere with someone, and sometimes he shows himself at a signing (so it must be a comics festival) and sometimes he doesn’t (so it might or might not be) and sometimes he shows himself with his family (so it’s clearly a vacation).

The Fiji trip in particular is in company with another cartoonist, who I think is named Emile from some postcards on the last page of the book. Trondheim draws him as a panda, and never explains who he is or why the two are traveling together: was this another festival? did they just both want to go to Fiji and their families didn’t? were they working on a project together and could call this “research” for tax purposes? We don’t know, as we rarely know the details of other people’s lives. We just see some moments, react to it however we do, and then move on.

I found Trondheim a great diary cartoonist, and I wish both that he did more of it and the rest of his diary comics that do exist were published in English. But the things I wish for only very rarely come true. At least we have four books of Little Nothings: they may be little, but that’s not nothing.

Reposted from The Antick Musings of G.B.H. Hornswoggler, Gent.