Grotesque Anatomy
Tuesday, July 06, 2004
  Duds and Discounts
Yipes!  So that's what things look like when I don't turn on my PC for three days -- my Hotmail account is nearly full, and there's way too much to read throughout the comics blogosphere.  Much of the blogging seems to revolve around a little movie called Spider-Man 2, which I did manage to see yesterday.  So far Sean's take probably best sums up my own feelings, but I've still enjoyed reading Jim Henley's thoughts on the movie.  I agree with Jim that the themes he discusses are in the movie, but that's part of my problem with SM2:  The themes are in, around, under, and on top of this movie in such a painfully hammered-home way that it's impossible to get lost in the story.  Everyone's speechifying their laughably inane thoughts in the most stilted manner possible.  Perhaps this is the Ditko influence by way of Ayn Rand?  We can't have moments that are subtle or nuanced; everything must be made obvious and tedious, preferably by having the characters pontificate philosophies at the audience via long-winded soliloquies.

I did think the filmmakers managed to make Doc Ock a much cooler villain than he ever was in the comics.  Loved the idea of the arms controlling him, especially with the visual of the pincers as a dinosaur head whispering in his ear.  The sound effects also went a long way toward establishing the alien-ness of Ock's tentacles without overdoing it.  (Perhaps the movie would have been better if the special effects crew had also been responsible for reining in Maguire's and Dunst's performances.)

Back in the realm of actual comic books, I've been reading a lot of trashy, pulpy manga lately.  My local Half Price Books has stacks of what look like remaindered books from ComicsOne, all reduced to the low, low clearance price of two bucks apiece.  So I picked up full sets of Offered, Goku: Midnight Eye, and Kabuto, as well as the first two volumes of Wounded Man.  (As further evidence that these books were remaindered, ComicsOne is unloading sets of these and other series at half-off on their website.)

Finally, DCBS has this month's specials up.  Fans of Mark Millar should be happy, as both the Ultimates hardcover and the first MK Spider-Man collection are offered at 50% off.  Myself, I'm more excited about the Russ Manning Magnus Robot Fighter HC (50% off), Andy Diggle and Pascual Ferry's Adam Strange #1 (75% off), and the first two volumes of Grant Morrison's Doom Patrol (both 50% off). 
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Iron Fist

by John Jakala

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