The Signal Watch is Volume 2 of the League of Melbotis blog.  For previous posts (April 2003 - December 2009), we invite you to visit Volume 1.

Who is The League?

The League resides in Austin, Texas.  He is in his mid-30's, cohabitates with his two dogs (Lucy and Scout), his cat (Jeff the Cat), and his lovely wife, Troubles McSteans

It is true that his brother is Steanso, but he claims no responsibility for anything the man does.

He does not know when he began reading comics, but family-legend has it that his first word was (no fooling) "Batman", thanks to the power of Adam West and syndicated reruns. 

The League attended and graduated from the University of Texas with degrees in Radio-Television-Film and History.  After many years in eLearning, he currently works in the field of Digital Libraries.

He has written for Nanostalgia, Film Fodder and other pop culture sites.  

Artist's depiction of The League blogging
For more information and the history of "Why 'The League'?" and "Why 'Melbotis'?", you can click here to learn more.

What's on this site?

TV, Movies, Film, and Pop-Culture

This site features genre and pop-culture entertainment in general, we review both newer and older media, and generally leave the door open for discussion in the comments section. 

Occasionally we'll discuss media and its impact on the bigger picture and on our own personal life.


The blog will often shine a special spotlight on Superman, the Man of Steel, created by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, and first published by National Periodical Publications in 1938. Today, Superman comics, movies, etc... are produced by DC Comics, a division of Time-Warner.

We tend to believe Superman is pretty keen.

Man of Steel and his lady friend

To that end, we've spent a lot of time, effort and dough getting to know The Man of Steel pretty well.

If we achieve one thing through this site, we hope that you'll come away with a marginally greater appreciation of The Last Son of Krypton.


Many people believe that comics begin and end with superheroes, but just like film or books, the medium of the comic book can play host to any genre or format.  From true life tales to horror to comedy to kids' adventure, there's very few areas comics don't touch.

We encourage our family of readers to explore the many different models and genres of comics, from Sunday newspaper strips to literary work, autobiographical work, experimental, historical and everything inbetween.

DC Comics and Superheroes

We're fans of all sorts of super-heroing, but tend to know more about, and follow the adventures of super-heroes owned and published by DC Comics. Gen-X'ers will remember many of the characters from Hanna-Barbera's "The Super Friends" or from their comic-book roots in "The Justice League of America". These characters include Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, The Flash, Aquaman, Martian Manhunter, and many, many more.

My imaginary friends

Certainly our tastes don't begin and end with DC.  I'm a fan of the Marvelous competition, superhero stuff at Boom! Comics, and various other superheroes.  But at the end of the day, I'm most invested in the universe created by DC Comics.

Why Super-Heroes?

Because super-heroes are not just the modern mythology, but because, at their best, super-heroes can engage in complex morality tales, using the conceits of the genre far beyond the black and white concept of cops-and-robbers or lantern-jawed do-gooders to do what stories can do best: Superheroes can enable us to examine complex issues, from civil rights (X-Men), to personal responsibility (Spidey), to the complicated definition of justice (Batman), to studies of the use and exploitation of power for the many rather than the one (Superman). 

Or, of course, they can just be a ridiculous, good time.

Film noir, noir & crime books and other media

On the flipside of superheroes, we're also interested in the sort of fiction that became popular in the mid-20th century with its roots in pulp novels, crime comics and b-movies.  While we've done some deep dives into DC Comics and superhero comics' history, we haven't done as much in the world of film noir and crime writing.  Still, we're fans and it's probably safe to say this is the latest obsession.

We're working toward developing our ideas around noir cinema and crime fiction, and we hope we can find others with a similar interest, and folks who can help us along the way.  Perhaps you may find some of this interesting as well.  Who knows?

Longhorn Sports (mostly football)

At The Signal Watch, we also love NCAA college football played for the University of Texas. So don't be too shocked to find mention of the mighty Texas Longhorns.

This is Vince Young.  We speak his name with reverence.

Dogs (and other pets)

Also, we love dogs. We have two of them.

Lucy and Scout:  These are my pals

 Jeff the Cat gets fewer mentions, but he's a pretty swell fellow, and he sleeps about five inches away from me every night.

Other Stuff:

It's fair to say you may see columns pop up with regularity on other topics
  • The news, from time to time
  • Science
  • Space exploration and NASA
  • Movie monsters
  • Old School TV

What does "The Signal Watch" mean, anyway?

"The Signal Watch" refers to the watch given by Superman to his pal, Jimmy Olsen, which would emit a super-sonic sound detectable only by Superman, but which was depicted as a "zee zee zee..." in the comics. Jimmy was to use the watch only when faced with mortal danger. Which happened monthly.

We invite you to read other meanings onto the name, as I assure you, we mean those as well.


Just as Superman had an extended family, so, too, do we hope that we can make you part of the Signal Watch family.

Maybe you can be our very own "Beppo the Super Monkey"!