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About Abe

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    Trenchcoat Brigade
  • Birthday 11/11/1979

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  1. HELLBLAZER #222

    While I found this issue more fun to read than any of the rest of the arc I'm rather dissatisfied with the whole thing. Chief amongst my dissatisfactions: 1) Continuinty error of the day 2) If the third place is a numb center of the whole post-mortem universe that's only reached by personal consent (which is an interesting and worthwhile idea), what is its goal? Why does the big ugly want to collect souls? Heaven and Hell want souls in order to staff their armies for the coming apocalypse or the reward/punish individuals for their sins... What exactly is big ugly's point? Even purgatory has a purpose... it's a sort of waiting hall for souls until judgement or until sufficient prayers have been said to lift them to heaven, depending who you ask. Does big ugly just want to have plenty to eat? Is he infected by poke-fever and feels that he's Gotta Catch 'Em All? 3) Why is big ugly...well, big and ugly? The third place is all about being numb and detached. Wouldn't an androgynous, indistinct, flat-effect overlord make more sense than something that looks crafted for terror? 4) Why is going to the 3rd place so bad? Yeah, it's an absence of sensation...but once you get there, you won't even have the capacity to care that you don't care. Given the logistical problems with an eternity of pleasure or pain eternal numbness doesn't sound that terrible. 5) That must have been some hell of a mind wipe to make John Constantine decide to off himself on the spur of the moment. He's gotten down in the dumps about the things he's done before but "Yeah... I suck, I'll just go ahead and die to further your crackpot scheme for world peace" is awfully out of character for an otherwise well rendered JC. Even if he expected The Big Three to bail him out, why bother? He didn't seem to know about the 3rd place before hand so couldn't have expected that dipping in, saying Hi, and getting sprung would delay Big Ugly long enough for Evans and Co to finish their plans, so why bother if he didn't actually plan to follow through? 6) What happened to the girl? Maybe something was mentioned last issue that I've forgotten, but I could have sworn we had a couple panels of John and the girl (whose name escapes me) chatting it up and her saying she was coming with him... So where'd she go? If she didn't come along then what was she doing for two weeks? 7) What's the deal with the big C? Did Mina just pick it so that she could map it onto an existing construction project or what? I can't think of a single religious emblem that doesn't have its own logic and in most cases said logic is fairly obvious once you're basically familiar with the theology. The best I can come up with is a vertical line representing Heaven and Hell with an off-shoot to the third place but that seems kind of a stretch and not terribly meaningful. 8) The whole near-death experience thing doesn't make a lot of sense. I've never heard of any accounts of people being offered a choice or asked for consent, much less Always being asked. And if any near-death experience will lead to an offer for the third place then why all the rigamarole with the burial ritual? Meh. My wife tells me that I pick too many nits when I read and that I blow inconsequential side-items out of proportion, thus ruining my enjoyment of what I read. I don't generally agree, but maybe that's the case here. This whole arc I've been coming up with questions and waiting for a big reveal to answer them. Instead I get few and weak answers coupled with lead in to More of this arc (which doesn't promise to answer my questions) along with a big, demon-shaped continuinty error.
  2. Flight 1,2,3

    So's that people know what I'm talking about: Amazon page for volume 1 of a (so far) 3 volume series called Flight I saw part of the cover of volume 3 on the edge of a photo on the Penny-Arcade site today and was intruiged by the artwork, so searched around to see what it was (it wasn't obviously even a book in the photo; I suspected a game or movie). Turns out that it's the third volume of a series of compilation books with comics by various artists (some known, some not, mostly webcomic folks). It interests me, but I've not seen it in stores around here. Is it worth ordering them? Are any of the 3 more worthwhile than the others?
  3. What do you think of it so far, for new folks.

    Counting just the 221 issues and not side cameos: 99.5475% (I missed one of the guest author issues back during Delano's run) It amuses me that of the non-Internet-clicky answers voted for, raven and writing desk are tied at 1. So apparently the answer to, "How is a raven like a writing desk?" is, "Denise Mina".
  4. Fuckbiscuitshitangels (Warren Ellis)

    John's onto something with the periodical argument: it isn't like Kate Bush was supposed to be releasing a song every month, after all... (Given Stephen King's astonishing ability to churn out a huge fat book at the drop of a hat, he might not be the best example you could have picked of a writer dragging their feet, btw.) I think King is a fairly good example. It took him 22 years to finish the Dark Tower series and he went around writing dozens of other books that touched on that story and world in the meantime. Then he got in a car accident, almost died, and said he was giving up writing...this with the afore-mentioned series only halfway done. The fact that King apparently can drop a doorstop-sized tome with less effort than is required for most mortals to move their bowels just makes it worse for those of us who were waiting and waiting and waiting for him to finish a series he started so very long ago. The same can be said of many sci-fi and fantasy authors. Jordan, Martin, Goodkind, even Rowling have fallen behind schedule as their respective series roll along. The only series novel-format author I can think of who has stuck to a schedule with the regularity generally expected of comic authors is Terry Pratchett. He said he'd put out a new Discworld book every year until they nailed his coffin shut and he's stuck to it without any exceptions I can recall. Generally with improving quality rather than the reverse. Oh, right, point needed. Fans in other industries do get snarky. I've read innumerable forum posts about authors who need to get off their duffs and finish X book that was supposed to be out Y months ago. I think they just get less snarky because delays occur so much more often in book and movie releases. It's almost expected that any release date given more than a two or three months in advance is probably wrong.
  5. What do you think of it so far?

    I gave her run fairly low marks on the poll but I think my dissatisfaction comes primarily from two points, only one of which is really even relavent to Mina's writing. 1) John gave up magic, a fairly enormous event given that he's a wizard, and Mina hasn't really dealt with it at all. He's done a few little spells and dismissed them as parlour tricks but the issue has basically been dropped. I expected something more along the lines of the last time John hated his life and gave up...a descent into drunken hobo-hood. Not business as usual but with a lower caliber of magicing. 2) There's been very little tension in the whole arc. It's like the badguys are playing hardball ("We're gonna kill John Constantine! And then we'll summon up the empathy devourer from the unHell (or whatever that thing was)!") while John's afflicted with a somewhat annoying curse and a desire to track it back to its source that, so far as I can tell, is largely just curiosity and a need for something to occupy his mind so as to avoid the whole nergal-sister-in-hell-no-more-magic deal. There's impending doom, I guess, but the forces of good don't know about it. Thus, no dramatic tension. The only really interesting parts of the arc so far, for me, have been the historical monks of doom bits and now the romance-for-John angle.
  6. The Eternal Thread

    Entirely unrelated to the "is the art fucking awesome or does everyone look like clones" discussion: does anyone know if the "That's So Sprite!" thing was based on the show "That's So Raven!"? I'd never heard of the latter until today and have absolutely no intention of seeking it out to find out if they have the same catch-phrase, but the similarity in names struck me as too much to be coincidence. (If anyone wonders: A friend of mine's email address somehow got attributed to a child actor by the name of Dylan Sprouse somewhere in the bowels of MySpace. While trying to find out who the heck that is I discovered that he'd guest-starred on the afore-mentioned show) Oh, and I'm in the awesome camp for the art so far but it'll be at least one more issue before I decide if I'm going to stick with this one. I'm unfamiliar with the Eternals due to mostly avoiding Cape-centric books so the concept is new and intruiging to me, but I've yet to make the internal adjustments to allow billion-year-old god-figures to wear primary color spandex.
  7. What's going on with you?

    While my life of late certainly doesn't measure up to death, disease, or disemployment I still feel like bitching. So far this week: had an exam Tuesday (went well enough I suppose but the lead up to writing an exam sucks regardless of how well you know the material), quiz tomorrow, quiz coming friday, vast amount of improbably difficult homework due Monday for my solid state class. Let the magic smoke out of my vacuum (again... way to go long-ass flatmate hair), cat crapped on the floor, hall toilet exploded (apparently soaking the hall carpet; I haven't been home yet to find out how bad it still is), discovered that one of my credit cards somehow went $60 over balance while I wasn't looking, pulled something in my back, and have a nasty hole on the inside of my lip where I bit the hell out of it on the weekend. Luckily I only have to get through another day and a half. Classes tomorrow, work tomorrow night, classes Friday morning and an appointment with the dean to get approval to take 20 hours next semester (because I'm completely insane and enjoy working myself to death, you see, and so I can make it an 'intensive physics with double major in mathematics' when I graduate next April, rather than the non-intensive version), and then blissful nothingness until Monday morning. Well, nothingness and my birthday on Sunday, so hopefully smooth sailing for a few days. I tell you, it's a good thing the semester is nearly up; I just get tireder and tireder every damn day.
  8. WHO's that girl?

    As I Christopher Eccleston's contract was only for season one. Presumably after filming but before the series finished airing (since as I recall they shot the whole thing inside of like 2 months) during negotiations he decided not to do another season because he had other things he was more interested in. The initial report was that he was afraid of being typecast, but I recall Chris and/or the BBC making statements to the contrary after the furor. It's kind of a shame about Billie, but since the new series hasn't even started airing yet I imagine they'll phase her out in a respectable manner. Just so long as she doesn't go back to that tosser boyfriend of hers.
  9. WHO's that girl?

    I've gotta agree with Mark and Mickey on this one. The old cybermen were very 'the future will involve a very large number of silver jumpsuits and poorly-thought-out accessories'. I quite like the new one and don't really see a problem with the legs. Legs are hard to do anything with short of cgi... they're long and only bend in one spot and you can't put too much crap on them or the actor won't be able to walk. My only problem with the new-era Cyberman is that there's no real indication that it's not just a robot. In fact, the visible cables and whatnot under the metal plating just reinforces the robot idea rather than giving any hint toward the whole 'cyborg' bit. But that's just a nit. I like it.
  10. What's going on with you?

    Took my GRE last month and had the scores sent out to the various grad schools I'm looking to attend. I say this by way of prologue to my actual news: University of Washington sent me an email inviting me to apply. Woohoo! :) Not the most prestigious school in the world, or even of the ones I'm applying it, but it does the ego good to have someone say, "Hey, we want you." Of course, I'm also down to $10 until next Friday, so I suppose every piece of silver has its cloudy lining... :-?
  11. Thanks for all the effort Seth, and sorry to hear about your accident :( The link that Adrian gave me back up the thread had most of the issues I'm missing. Just have to find 207 now :) I'll give ebay a shot. I've never actually bought anything there despite making frequent use of its sister site half.com. Something about ebay has always struck me as untrustworthy despite that I don't know anyone who has actually gotten burned buying something on auction there. Oh well, I think JC is worth breaking my ebay cherry for. Thanks!
  12. The Introduce Yourself Thread

    Welcome AP and Elektra! I have to agree with Pooka, Applesauce Parker is right up there with Asymmetrical Popeye in the book of awesome names. But I may be biased since my initials are also AP...
  13. Batman DVD (Not Begins)

    Yep. And while Jack Nicholson played the part very well, I'm not sure I'll ever be able to think of the Joker as having anyone but Mark Hammill's voice again. I've not heard any definite rumours about who's to play him in the Begins sequel, but I suspect I'm going to be let down regardless. The voice acting for that series is easily among the best I've ever heard.
  14. Batman DVD (Not Begins)

    The batman animated series that aired on Fox from 1992 to 1995 is the one being referred to as awesome by Mark (which in fact it was). There's also Batman Beyond which is a sci-fi spin-off of the Batman story. I quite like it and it's in much the same vein as the afore-mentioned series, but I understand it's not everyone's cuppa. I *think* there was another animated series as well, but I can't find any reference to it on IMDB, so I may be imagining it. If it did exist it would likely be hard to find anyway, so you're probably safe with any DVDs you can find. I know at least some of Batman Beyond is out on DVD, as well as the Mask of the Phantasm (which isn't in any way Beyond affiliated) movie. Don't know if the original series was ever put out on DVD or not. I might have to look into purchasing it if so.... Harley and Ivy were entirely hotter than non-japanese cartoons have any right to be.
  15. Batman DVD (Not Begins)

    If you've seen any of the Batman animated series, it's like that. I recall having seen Mask of the Phantasm on TV at one point years ago, but only remember that it was good. Haven't had a chance to watch it since buying the DVD. The tone is about as adult and dark as you can expect from an animated series that aired on Fox.