Rand Bellavia takes a look at his growing longbox, and reflects on comics released in November 2016.

Batman 11: I Am Suicide part three

story: Tom King
pencils: Mikel Janin
inks: Mikel Janin and Hugo Petrius
colors: June Chung
letters: Clayton Cowles

This is a pretty serious story (it is called “I am Suicide” after all) which is probably why these panels stuck out so clearly to me.

I’m a sucker for this kind of silliness.

The Champions 2: Change the World

writer: Mark Waid
pencils: Humberto Ramos
inks: Victor Olazaba
colors: Edgar Delgado
letters: Clayton Cowles

The first issue consisted of the team coming together and issuing their vision statement — to the comic reading audience as well as the greater 616 world.  This issue is all about team-building:

Apparently Mark Waid finds Amadeus Cho to be more annoying that his creator (and regular writer) Greg Pak does.

This gag is totally worth the page it takes to sell it:

Kamala gives another speech, and there is a discussion re: whether there is such a thing as too many Captain Americas.

Obviously the point of this is to allow the readers to get to know the characters, but the conversation never crosses into “let’s talk about something we all already know in a way that people never would” exposition.

Viv and Nova?

The kiss is interrupted by Kamala, who is approaching wet blanket territory.  Hulk returns and — because this is a Marvel Comic — is attacked by Cyclops for the obligatory second issue fight scene with a popular guest hero.  Once the obvious misunderstanding is cleared up (see: this is a Marvel Comic) Cyclops joins our intrepid band of young heroes.

As the tired heroes prepare for sleep, they notice that Viv is missing.  They go off in search of her and learn that Viv doesn’t so much mind the stench of testosterone and body spray.

The Flintstones 5: Election Day

writer: Mark Russell
artist: Steve Pugh
colors: Chris Chuckry
letters: Dave Sharpe

If you haven’t figured it out already, Mark Russell’s Flintstones comic is satire.  This issue is called “Election Day,” so watch out.

We open at a debate, and learn that one of the candidates is a war-monger.

Fred and Barney quickly leave the debate.  We flash back to learn why Clod the Destroyer’s speech left a bad taste in their mouths. 

We see how Fred and Barney came to fight in the war with the Tree People.

Having just had his first child, Fred feels that he can’t take any chances.

In the present, there is another election taking place at Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm’s school.

Pebbles is incensed at her classmates reaction to the speeches.

Back in the past, the Tree People have been defeated, and Fred makes a chilling discovery.

As does Barney:

This comic consistently did three things:

  1. Offered satirical commentary on an increasingly insane world.
  2. Provided thoughtful explanations for the seemingly random plot machinations of the Flintstones cartoon — in this case, explaining Bamm-Bamm’s super human strength by making it clear that he was one of the super-strong (but peaceful) Tree People.  (In the television show, Bamm-Bamm was left in a basket on Barney and Betty’s doopstep — a popular form of procreation in cartoons.)
  3. Explored potentially depressing and cynical aspects of human nature while always being careful to end on a hopeful note.

Other Comics I Read from November 2016

  • All-New Wolverine 14
  • All-Star Batman 4
  • Amazing Spider-Man 21
  • Archie 14
  • Avengers 1, 1.1
  • Batman 10, Annual 1
  • Bitch Planet 9
  • Black Hammer 5
  • Black Widow 8
  • Bloodshot USA 2
  • Briggs Land 4
  • Britannia 3
  • Cage 3
  • Captain Marvel 10
  • Casanova: Acedia 7
  • Catwoman: Election Night
  • Chew 60
  • Civil War II 7
  • Clean Room 13
  • Clone Conspiracy 2
  • Daredevil 13
  • Death of X 3, 4
  • Detective Comics 944, 945
  • Doctor Strange 14
  • Eden’s Fall 3
  • Empress 7
  • Faith 5
  • Foolkiller 1
  • Generation Zero 4
  • Glitterbomb 3
  • The Goddamned 5
  • Guardians of the Galaxy 14
  • Hellblazer 4
  • Infamous Iron Man 2
  • Invincible 131
  • Invincible Iron Man 1
  • Jessica Jones 2
  • Kill or Be Killed 4
  • Kingsway West 3
  • Midnighter and Apollo 2
  • Mighty Thor 13
  • Moon Knight 8
  • Moonshine 2
  • Ms. Marvel 13
  • Ninjak 21
  • No Mercy 11
  • Occupy Avengers 1
  • Old Man Logan 13
  • Power Man and Iron Fist 10
  • Reborn 2
  • Revival 44
  • Romulus 2
  • Saga 40
  • Sheriff of Babylon 12
  • Six-Pack and Dogwelder: Hard Travelin’ Heroz 4
  • Southern Bastards 15
  • Spider-Man 9
  • Spider-Woman 13
  • Super Powers 1
  • Superman 10, 11, Annual 1
  • Thanos 1
  • Thief of Thieves 37
  • Totally Awesome Hulk 12
  • Unworthy Thor 1
  • Vigilante: Southland 2
  • Walking Dead 160
  • Wonder Woman 10, 11
  • World of Tanks 2



About Author

Rand Bellavia is half of the Filk Pop Nerd Rock band Ookla the Mok. They’ve been playing at science fiction and comic book conventions since 1994. Their clever, media-savvy lyrics, catchy melodies, and accessible power-pop sound have made them a cult-sensation with nerds everywhere. With song titles like Super Powers, Welcome to the Con, Arthur Curry, Kang the Conqueror, and Stop Talking About Comic Books or I’ll Kill You, it’s easy to see why. Rand and Ookla the Mok have won four Pegasus Awards, and the 2014 Logan Award for Outstanding Original Comedy Song. Ookla the Mok had the most requested song on Dr. Demento in 2012 (“Tantric Yoda”) and 2013 (“Mwahaha”). Rand co-wrote the theme song for the Disney cartoon Fillmore, and his vocals are the first thing you hear on Gym Class Heroes’ Top Five hit “Cupid’s Chokehold.” In his secret identity, Rand is the Director of the Montante Library at D’Youville College in Buffalo, New York. He has lectured and presented at international conferences on the subject of comics and libraries. Rand is like the Internet, except he smells nice.


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