Browsing: Retro Review

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RETRO REVIEW: Amazing Spider-Man #160 (September 1976)

Or – “The 1970’s Called, And They Wanted Me To Show You Something…” Recent events in the Marvel Universe have made many of us yearn for days past, when heroic figures strode like giants across the streets of Manhattan, and legendary artists created comic works that tower over the hackery of today’s fan-fiction scribblers.  In those heady days, the heroes of the Marvel Universe were formed from the basest clay into world-famous icons whose every move was that of latter-demigods. And then, this one time, Peter Parker got beat up by his car. So, he has that going for him.…

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RETRO REVIEW: Ghost Rider #68 (May 1982)

Or – “What The Publishers These Days Call A Great Jumping-On Point…” I’ve commented many times on my great dislike of both the 90’s Ghost Rider revamp and the “Elvis-As-Hipster-Doofus” take that was the Nick Cage movie.  As with many of my dislikes, it’s not out of sheer bastardry that I rage against the corporate machine, but because of my deep love of a DIFFERENT version of the character.  I came into Johnny Blaze’s run as Ghost Rider late (with the last issue of that run, #81, actually) and worked my way backwards through his character history until I now…

DC
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Retro Review: Justice League Annual #4 (Summer 1990)

Or – “Bwah Ha Ha HAAA!” These days, it seems that the 80’s ‘Bwah Ha Ha’ Justice League is a pretty devalued commodity, what with the multiple deaths, several heel turns, at least one brutal rape, and a general undercurrent of unpleasantness.  If these weren’t the actual stories taking place on a parallel Earth, one might even conclude that SOMEONE in power is embarrassed by these stories…  Settle in and get ready to decide whether or not they should be!

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Retro Review: ROM #43 (June 1983)

Or – “Because Someone Demanded It!  (Though Since The Crash, I Don’t Recall Whom…) One of the saddest stories in comics has to be that of Bill Mantlo, one of Marvel’s more prolific writers of the 1970’s and 80’s.  Responsible for many memorable tales (including turning the Micronauts and this title into long-running stories despite being essentially toy tie-in books), Bill has been in a coma since the mid-90’s, victim of a hit and run accident.  Bill’s body of work includes many excellent tales (I highly recommend tracking down Vision and The Scarlet Witch) but a recent unofficial Spoilerite poll…

DC
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RETRO REVIEW: Prez #1 (Aug./Sept. 1973)

Or – “The Seventies Really WERE A Different Time…” It’s sometimes difficult to remember that most of the things that we complain about (the economy, foreign conflicts, gas prices, government policices) are the same things people have been complaining about for decades.  40 years ago, a legendary creator returned to DC Comics after decades away and captured the zeitgeist of those tumultuous times and channeled it into his creative devices to create a lasting, viable, and affecting piece of work, which tragically was unfinished.  That book was called.. …The New Gods. This book was written by that legend’s ex-partner the same…

Marvel
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RETRO REVIEW: Uncanny X-Men #191 (March 1985)

Or – “You Always Hurt The Ones You Love…” There is a common misconception amongst those who listen to the podcast that Rodrigo is the only one who really knows the X-Men.  There are a number of stories (Morrison’s New X-Men, Days of Future Past, the 1991 relaunch, the original appearance of Juggernaut, the Mimic/Super-Adaptoid battle) that are among my favorites, and I’m passing familiar with the team in all it’s iterations (otherwise I wouldn’t be able to manage my back issue bins at work.)  There are even X-Men stories that I think are absolutely amazing, and beyond reproach awesome. …

Retro Review
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RETRO REVIEW: Skateman #1 (November 1983)

One of the great pleasures of reading comic books for me is finding characters and concepts that are just plain ludicrous, so utterly ridiculous that you can’t help but love them.  Even guys like Lee and Kirby didn’t create gems with every outing, and I love the thought process that leads to concepts like The Music Master or The Dingbats of Danger Street.  Like the movies of Ed Wood, there are comic books whose entertainment value transcends questions of quality, comic books whose existence seems to be nothing but sheer force-of-will on the part of their creators, comic books for which…

Marvel
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Retro Review: Iron Man #200 (November 1985)

Or – “How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love Red & Silver…” Everyone has deeply held, inexplicable beliefs about the exploits of their comic heroes.  My friend Dusty won’t read Avengers without Iron Man, Cap and Thor.  Stephen is still burning about the cancellation of ‘Legend of the Dark Knight.’  Otter Disaster can’t stand the way Superman “swims” through the air, and used to say that when he learned to fly, he’d do it STANDING UP.  I am often the target of derision at the store (GATEKEEPER HOBBIES, Huntoon & Gage, Topeka!  Ask us about Matt Wagner’s Demon mini!) for…

DC
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RETRO REVIEW: Action Comics #370 (December 1968)

Or – “What Happens In The Alternate Universe, STAYS In The Alternate Universe…” As comics readers, I think we tend to think of the retcon as a modern invention, something that Roy Thomas or Steve Englehart created to offset the changing tastes of comics readers who weren’t gonna stand for all them talkin’ tigers and cartoon sidekicks with which the Golden Age was rife.  But dating back to the very first comics books ever, writers were in the business of creating stories to fill in the gaps between what we knew and what we didn’t.  For instance, did you know that Kal-El was…

Featured
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RETRO REVIEW: Shogun Warriors #1 (February 1979)

Or – “You Could Conceivably Blame This ENTIRE Exercise On This Comic Book…” Now, work with me here… The year is 1979, and I, an avid reader of science fiction and brainy books happen to be hanging out with my much-cooler cousin Elwood (more than likely under the auspices of my Aunt Sherry.) We end up at the Duckwalls, or possibly the S&S Drugstore, my memory isn’t quite clear, but I remember purchasing this 35 cent piece of history and being kind of interested in this whole “funnybook” thing. Now, cut forward to 1989 or so… Having expanded my collection,…

Featured
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Retro Review: Asterix The Gaul (1961)

It worked before, let’s try it again Even though it is a holiday in the United States of America, we at Major Spoilers realize there are a great many of our readers that hail from places not contained within 50 states. Last year, I took down memory lane with a look at one of my favorite comics of all time Asterix and Cleopatra.  It was so well received last year, we’re repeating the stunt again.  Considering there are thirty plus Asterix titles, I think it is safe to say, we won’t be running out of material anytime soon.

Red 5 Comics
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Mini Retro Review: FCBD Atomic Robo

Yes, Free Comic Book Day was weeks ago, but dang it, I’ve been busy with stuff (super secret stuff), and I only just made it to my FCBD stash in my ever growing comic book stack, which is relatively small when compared to my ever growing comic book collection that has not been bagged, tagged, and boarded.  It’s all on my to do list, just like this Mini Retro Review of Red 5 Comics’ Free Comic Book Day Atomic Robo issue.

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Retro Review: Asterix and Cleopatra

40 years and still fresh Way back in the day, my grandparents traveled to Europe and when they returned, they had a treasure chest full of gifts to hand out to the good grandkids.  While I dug my own nutcracker, the family coo-coo clock, and enough foreign sweets to set me down the path to a future cavity, the one gift that amazed me the most was a German language version of Asterix and Cleopatra.  For years, I poured over those pages taking in every lavish panel, and sadly, not understanding a word of it.  It wasn’t until just a…

DC
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RETRO REVIEW: Saga of The Swamp Thing #37 (June 1985)

Or – “The Seed From Which Everything Vertigo Will Eventually Grow…” Back in 1985, the choices in terms of comics reading were much more limited in scope than they are now (at least the choices within bicycle range of my house in North Central Kansas.) Sure, Epic Illustrated and Heavy Metal were still around, but those books held the distinction of being: A. Expensive B. Marked 18 and up. C. Distributed differently than the comics, making them harder to find in the drugstores and Pump ‘N Pantries I frequented. When Alan Moore took over DC’s faltering super-hero/horror hybrid title, Swamp…

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