Showing posts with label supergirl. Show all posts
Showing posts with label supergirl. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Super Reading: Supergirl #22 (2018)

variant cover by Amanda Conner, w/ colors by Paul Mounts

The Killers of Krypton - Part Two


Script:  Marc Andreyko
Pencils:  Kevin Maguire
Inks:  Sean Parsons
Colors:  FCO Plascencia
Letters:  Tom Napolitano
Cover: (main) Terry and Rachel Dodson/ (variant) Amanda Conner w/ Paul Mounts (colors)
Editor:  Jessica Chen
Group Editor:  Brian Cunningham

Friday, September 14, 2018

LOIS NEWS: We Have a New Lois Lane! (CW Superhero Shows News)



If you hang around these here parts, you know we're fans of the character Lois Lane in all her forms, be it comics, television, movies, what-have-you.  She's as big of a deal in our world, practically, as Big Blue himself.

Season 2 of the CW hour-long-drama Supergirl saw the arrival of Tyler Hoechlin as Superman, and while I wish his costume had a few tweaks, the man inside is really pretty great as Superman/ Clark Kent.  We saw him talking to Lois on the phone, and Season 1 featured Lois Lane's sister, Lucy, as a romantic rival for Jimmy Olsen (this is comics canon in a way, going back to the Silver Age, but it was nowhere near as goofy as anyone showing interest in Jimmy in the comics).

Season 4 of Supergirl started production a while back (and will begin airing in October?  Maybe?), and us Superman/ Lois fans were thrilled to hear that the CW was seeking a Lois Lane for their TV multiple TV series.

People - we have our Lois.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Super Reading: Supergirl #21 (2018)


The Killers of Krypton: Part One


Script:  Marc Andreyko
Pencils:  Kevin Maguire
Inks:  Sean Parsons
Colors:  FCO Plascencia
Letters:  Tom Napolitano
Cover:  Terry and Rachel Dodson
Editor:  Jessica Chen
Group Editor:  Brian Cunningham

Well, thank goodness.

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Travelogue: I was in Indiana - Plus, Frankenstein and whatnot in the special collections



The project I'm on at work is a joint partnership between Northwestern and Indiana Universities, and while I've been to Chicago plenty to get to NU (it's my institutional "home"), I'd not been to Bloomington, Indiana where a good chunk of my team lives and Indiana University resides.

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Super Reading: Supergirl - Being Super (trade, 2018)



Writer:  Mariko Tamaki
Artist:  JoĆ«lle Jones
Inks (Chapter One):  Sandu Florea
Colorist:  Kelly Fitzpatrick
Letterer:  Saida Temofonte
Editor:  Paul Kaminski

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Television in 2017 (for me)



Here was the thing about television in 2017:  there was so damn much of it.  

I think we're all pretty comfortable at this point just telling people "I've already got too many shows, I'm not looking for anything new."  Anything and everything is discussed as if it's must-see water-cooler discussion material, but the fact is, the audience is so splintered, and there's so much supposedly quality content on, none of it qualifies as required viewing nor are characters and storylines part of the shared cultural lexicon.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

The 2016 Kryptos - Television

way more effort went into this graphic than I want to admit

2016.  It seems so far away now.  Heck, Christmas was, like, two years ago at this point.  But let us remember that all too vital part of all of our lives - TELEVISION.

Oh, you don't own a television?  You haven't had cable in ten years?  Well, la di dah, mister fancy pants.  Some of us stay in touch with the people.

Between cable, internet streaming options and sports, it was certainly a year in which I watched a metric ton of TV.  You couldn't not be told you had to watch this show or that show by your friends or co-workers.  And some of them you didn't try, some of them you watched and didn't like and just prayed they'd never ask about whether you'd tried it or not, and some of it was maybe not the best thing but you still tuned in.  And some of it you set your schedule around watching.

Here's a quick rundown of some of what we watched:

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Checking in on DCTV: Supergirl and The Flash



Season 2 of Supergirl moved to The CW network, which was already home to DC's Arrow, The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow and iZombie, and the move has been nothing but good for the series, so far as I can tell.  Whatever dictates Season 1 had upon it as a show on a major network, moving to the less-major CW Network has meant the show feels less like it's bucking TV formulas and now it's matching The Flash for melding DC lore with crafting it's own mythology and character arcs.

This season I've enjoyed the shake-up and escape from CatCo, especially if Cat Grant isn't even going to be around and the far more fulfilling role for Win.  And, hey, Kara isn't being defined by which boy she'll pick, which is kind of remarkable on TV.  While Alex's "coming out" storyline felt a bit rushed, crammed in there in-between cyborgs and fiery aliens, alien fight clubs and whatnot, it's interesting to see the show stake it's claim on big-tent "Supergirl is for everyone" and just move forward without turning the show into a melodrama we all have to slog through.

In fact, the CW shows are pretty remarkably good at not doing the things that TV has traditionally done that drove me crazy - namely: have have characters keep secrets from people they otherwise trust when keeping a secret makes literally no sense and drag it out over whole seasons of a show or until they just forget to resolve the storyline.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Super Watch: Supergirl Season 2, Episodes 1 & 2



When I started watching Supergirl last season, I spent a lot of time rolling my eyes and letting my disappointment in the formulaic, color-by-numbers approach take me to a dark place.  But then, probably earlier on than I'd admit, the show started doing something different from what I expected.  Rather than setting up petty jealousies between characters, rather than turning Calista Flockhart's Cat Grant character into a caricature, rather than turning Kara into a hapless dope that everyone loves only because that's what the show insists must happen despite the fact the character is an idiot ruining everyone's lives...  someone stepped in and started turning the show into something I quite liked.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Supergirl's cousin is gonna show up on "Supergirl"


I pulled this image from Birth.Movies.Death.

As far as how this could have gone - I can't complain, really.  I have no idea what DC's deal is with the classic costume or how they think continually messing around with elements of the visual iconography of one of their most famous properties is somehow a good idea.  But, no one is asking me.  Red boots and cape.  Yellow in the "S".  No mandarin collar.

Sigh.  Look, I'm a red trunks guy, and the fact that DC can't seem to make the suit work correctly either here or in Man of Steel (piping and stippling is all just a bit much, especially with a useless belly-button belt-buckle) without an awkward red belt-to-nowhere is just maybe a sign we throw in the towel and go back to the red trunks look.

But, man, that dude ALSO looks like Superman, doesn't he?  You'll never hear me complain about Cavill, but so many folks have drawn Superman in so many ways over the years, and between Reeves, Reeve, Alyn, Cain and Cavill...  Well, I don't necessarily have a particular face I identify with Superman.  Just a certain presence, and I think this dude has it, just as Melissa Benoist doesn't look like Silver Age or Bronze Age Kara, but she sure has that same vibe.

I have never seen actor Tyler Hoechlin in anything, but so as long as he doesn't have a voice like Peter Lorre, I want to give him a shot.  So far so good with Supergirl defying expectations and beating the odds for what it seemed they'd do - and the energy the actors have brought to the show.

Look, I planned to hate-watch Supergirl, but I became a fan.  I am always excited to see what they'll try to do next with a character I have a little affection for.  Now we've got Superman, Martian Manhunter and Lynda Carter as POTUS.  I mean, OBVIOUSLY I'll be watching.

And if, you know, they want to one day do a Superman show or TV movie or ten, I won't complain.

Sunday, April 3, 2016

That Supergirl/ Flash Meet-Up on CBS's "Supergirl"



Pick a tone, DC Entertainment.

I was never a fan of the "two heroes meet, fight, realize it's all a mistake and then go off to fight a common threat" trope of comics.  So, yes, just seeing the title of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice literally told me everything I didn't need to see in the WB opus (now down over 70% in ticket sales from last weekend).  It literally makes no sense for a person dedicated to improving things for other people to start a conversation by throwing a punch at someone else's head.  Frankly, it always kind of diminishes whatever I'm reading when the writers get lazy and that's the path they follow.

Yeah, even "Superman meets Spider-Man".*

I've been a fan of The CW's The Flash since episode 1, and I continue to enjoy the heck out of that show.  From this DC nerd's perspective, this is how you update a character and make the concept work in another medium with different needs than the comic page or context of National Comics in the Jet Age.  If you're going to change up Barry's origin story a bit, this makes sense, and I like the family with which they're surrounded Barry, both the Wests and his "work family", made up of repurposed C and D listers.

The show is far from relentlessly cheerful - villains are a threat, and we've had two seasons with serious arcs casting a shadow over the events of everything else.   But the core characters don't wallow in self-imposed pity parties and comply with the notion that being a jerk is a prerequisite to intelligence or depth of character (it seems Arrow is continuing to struggle with how to dig themselves out of that hole).  Barry and Co.'s ability to keep on going and improve things for themselves and the world is at the heart of what I like about ongoing superhero comics.

I wrote more than one post regarding the rocky start to CBS's Supergirl, but at some point the show started getting a grip on what it is and could be.  Once it dropped some of the standard soapy TV tropes and got on with the business of superheroing, it's been on a gradual incline of watchability.  They dropped the lame "nice guy" storyline for Win, and, to my great satisfaction, the seemingly one-dimensional character of Cat Grant (played by Calista Flockhart) blossomed immediately into a mentor character for Supergirl and her alter ego.  And, of course, the long game of naming Hank Henshaw as leader of this DEO business pulled a switcheroo and turned out to be a huge highlight of the season as the character turned out not to be the ridiculous Cyborg Superman but Martian Manhunter.**

I never disliked the cast of Supergirl, but CBS applied a lot of old-hat tricks, believing they knew how to make the show work for the broadest audience, but it seemed outdated and a drag on the show's velocity.  And, while I'm not sure we're getting a second season (it hasn't been renewed so far as I know), a second season could get down to brass tacks and be quite fun.  Plus, they've said Lynda Carter could play the President next season, which this site heartily endorses.  It could be a lot of fun.

And there's that word.  Fun.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

CBS's "Supergirl" Seems Markedly Better



Against my better instincts, I kept tuning in week after week to CBS's entrance into the superhero game, Supergirl.  In all honesty, I didn't think the show would last, so I figured I could stick with it for a season and call it a day.  The show would demonstrate these bits of promise, and then revert back to the disappointing formula blend it seemed the network wanted to enforce - all of which seemed out of step with what might make the show work.

None of what I think has an impact on ratings, and I don't know how large or small the actual audience is for the program.  I hear things about falling ratings, but then I'm told its been renewed, so someone has faith in it.

I was pretty hard on this show when it started.  If I can give it grief, I can say some positive things as well.  And there's been good on the show in ways I've found pleasantly surprising - especially on network TV.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

In Defense of Bizarro: Me Am Think Bizarro Is Worst Character Ever

So, I watched Monday evening's episode of Supergirl on CBS, and while heartened that the episode introduced the idea of Bizarro for a new generation, I'm also wondering what they're leaving for Superman himself at this point, or what they think Superman has been up to as they keep introducing all of his villains on the show like they've never been around before.

But, no harm no foul.  

If I took exception to the episode, it was that we had a BINO.  Bizarro In Name Only.

Good-bye!  Me am not comics version of Bizarro-Girl!

If you've unfamiliar with Superman's sometimes enemy/ sometimes pal, Bizarro, well, firstly, I pity you.  Secondly, in the original comics, Bizarro was an imperfect duplicate of Superboy and, soon, Superman.  The angular-faced misfit was a perfect fit with the bi-polar nature of Superman's Silver Age adventures.

In the wake of the Senate hearings and the installation of the Comics Code Authority - we ended Superman threatening people and hurling them around violently and the comics explored what it meant for Superman to be the Last Son of Krypton as well as a Superman with time to kill since crime was abruptly held in check.  The Man of Steel was now having a good laugh moving the Eiffel Tower around to mess with Lois one story, and in the second feature was openly weeping about the fate of his birth parents.

Equal parts clown, monster, hero, villain, misunderstood child and wreckless menace, Bizarro was the wild card in the Superman deck in an era of Superman comics littered with Robot Supermans, Supergirls, Super Cats and Dogs, King Kongs with Death Laser Eyes and routine occurrences of Superman being turned into a baby.  I haven't even gotten to Jimmy Olsen's Silver Age lifestyle and all that insanity.  And, yet, it all fit together pretty well.

Bizarro first appeared as a one-off in Superboy #68, but soon re-appeared in the mainline Superman titles where he gained his own supporting cast and planet.  Hell, yes, he did.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Supergirl Season 1 Episode 4 or 5 - "How Does She Do It?"

The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was making nobody care how good a show actually is, just how it makes them feel.

Actually, the red button would have just opened the door, but that's okay.


I'm not sure how many episodes we are into Season 1 of Supergirl, but this week's episode "How Does She Do It?" was supposed to be last week's episode, but the episode contained some terrorist-like elements that would have seemed a bit unseemly to use in a show about the world's ginchiest superhero a few days after very real terror attacks that made the news in the same parts of the world where Supergirl is broadcast.

What I do know is that the entire program feels very, very much like it is written by people who absolutely cannot be bothered to think through their own show.  And it is absolutely exhausting to watch a show where it seems like the writers cannot follow logic from Point A to Point B to Point C without then deciding Point 117 comes next.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Supergirl Watch: Season 1, Episode 3

Much like Smallville, I suspect that any critical viewing of Supergirl will be an exercise in shooting fish in a barrel.  So, I've brought my 12-gauge and CBS has provided the barrel.  Let's maim some metaphorical fish.

good thing this bronze statue is actually lead.  Hope no one misses it so I don't have to find a pipe or literally anything but this valuable looking statue.


I came to many realizations watching this week's episode.

  1. Reactron is not a terribly creative villain.  He was kind of a one-trick-pony/ no personality guy in the comics, and here...  more of same.  Why did I used to like that guy?  Costume design?  No idea.  I like the name, though.  Could be that's it.
  2. If Cat Grant were anymore one-note on this show, she'd be a tone in Koyaanisqatsi
  3. The writers have just absolutely nowhere to go with Win.  That dude is going to die horribly so anyone can give him a passing thought and he'll ever have mattered in the show.  Also, I am not sure working a low-tier job at CatCo would set you up to hack satellites, get you $30K in equipment, and all the rest of the Smallville Watchtower responsibility he's taken on.  He's so forgettable, I have to place him every time he appears in frame.
  4. I have no idea what Kara's sister's name is after 3 hours of television.  She's just "Kara's-Sister".
  5. By episode 6, not one character in the DCU will have a secret identity unknown to Win.  truly, that man is the nexus of the DCU

Three episodes in, I'm a little stunned at how badly the writers are handling Cat Grant.  I have no huge expectations, but that the "interview" scene was incredibly poorly managed after the big build up last episode.  It's like Cat's terrible dialog is infecting everyone else's forgettable or fortune-cookie dialog.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Supergirl TV Watch: Season 1, Episode 2

Okay.  As I suspected it might be, Episode 2 was a far cry better than the pilot.  So, everybody settle the heck down.



Yes, the episode was still rife with issues within the episode, and it's hard to see how some of the story elements are going to avoid narrative traps and holes, but I wasn't just grimacing my way through the episode and, despite the bleached out lighting and utter lack of eyebrows on Calista Flockhart (she had eyebrows in the 90's.  I suspect Harrison Ford has taken them.), her dialog wasn't just setting me on the edge this go-round.

I don't get why DC Entertainment can't seem to decide what the hell the "S" stands for.  You just spent millions on an ad campaign telling people the "S" stood for "Hope" and now you're saying it stands for "Stronger Together", which is kinda corporate-retreaty-trust-fallsy.  Hope was fine.  I was kind of telling my TV "please don't do this...  please just say 'Hope' and move on."  But, nope.  This is why people wind up hating comics.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Super Watch: Supergirl Pilot on CBS

So.  Here's where I'm the jerk who didn't like the pilot of CBS's new Supergirl TV show that everyone is so excited about.



Look, sometimes I forget just how terrible 90% of network television truly is.  It's no secret network TV has its formulas, its trope for every situation, and never met a bit of exposition it didn't like.  I get that they had to get the character introduced and get a lot of things started quickly, and in the post-Lost wake, the networks think they've learned their lesson and are absolutely terrified of not giving the audience every detail about a show in the first episode.

And I say this as someone who likes Supergirl.  A lot. I've got Action 252 hanging up in my office in a frame (please don't rob me).  I've read Silver, Bronze, 90's, 00's and even gave the trainwrecky New 52 Supergirl a shot.  I'm not a stranger to the character.  And, while I actually like the general tone of "Kimmy Schmidt as Supergirl", because I was really convinced I'd never see that take again (thank you, Sterling Gates, wherever you are, for giving me that Supergirl, oh, so briefly)...  The show is a mess.

Yes, it is a show for children and for those who don't know Supergirl, and no one is under any legal or moral obligation to maintain fidelity to the comics.  I think Marvel has proved that's all pretty unnecessary so long as you get the basic details down.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Slowly making my way through DC's "Convergence"

Last week DC released the final issue of their Convergence mini-series, the two-month stop gap from DC Comics that was originally advertised as something editorial was doing while they took a break from publishing to move from DC's traditional home of NYC to sunny LA.

Of course, well in advance, it became clear that Convergence was going to be more than just a hiccup in DC's publishing schedule.  After the initial skyrocketing sales for The New 52, units moved have fallen off, and time and again, DC has wound up canceling a huge number of their initial offering of 52 books and the successors of same, all while keeping up appearances by maintaining a publishing line of 52 books (which always felt like something dreamed up by an actuary somewhere, so why it was part of their public marketing, I will never know).

"Welcome to... The Honeycomb Hide-Out!"

The first hint that we could count on major changes, post-Convergence, was that DC decided to follow their award-winning, best-selling Wonder Woman run by well-known comic writer Brian Azzarrello by hiring the previously-unpublished wife of popular comic artist David Finch (an artist with whom cheesecake was pretty much an inevitability) to pen the series.  It was a signal to anyone who has followed the industry for the past two decades that DC was basically putting New 52 Wonder Woman in a holding pattern for a while, but if you absolutely need a Wonder Woman comic - here's one to read (and, please, do not notice that Sensation Comics and Wonder Woman '77 are both fantastic and not technically part of the main stable of DC's titles managed by their core comics people).

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

CBS releases "Supergirl" Preview

oh my gosh, they brightened her up.  what the heck, DC?
Video is below



Kara Zor-El is not supposed to be targeted at me or my demographic. She was the younger cousin/ little sister allegory for Superman, and her adventures back in the 1950's were every bit as bananas as the most bananas of Silver Age tales (let's talk Comet the Super Horse sometime).

But, I'm a fan of Supergirl, nonetheless.  Sure, the 90's tried to make that really hard with the "Matrix" concept, but I still enjoyed at least the far end of that run when it was Linda Danvers in a t-shirt hopping around around 2002.  But I really like the insanely perky version from the 60's and the go-getter Bronze Age version who couldn't get through a day at university without an alien plot spoiling her lunch break.

But, I also know, hey, maybe a 40 year old dude is not who they think of as the current target audience for the story of a Supergirl.

Friday, March 6, 2015

new Supergirl costume is fairly Supergirl-riffic

this is it, there's no turning back now

Sometime in the next several months, CBS is slated to bring Supergirl to the small screen.  Look, I'm a Helen Slater guy from way back, a casting decision I will always support even if Supergirl, as a movie, has... complications.

In the comics, I'm really a fan of only a few eras of Supergirl, if by Supergirl you mean Kara Zor-El and not Cir-El, Matrix/ Mae or Linda Danvers (but, look, I will always support Linda Danvers, and I'm irritated she's mostly forgotten, because today's fangirl community would love her as some sort of Supergirl).

Straight up, I'm a Silver-Bronze Age Kara Zor-El fan when she was portrayed as bright, perhaps naive, but eternally optimistic teen and college kid.  With a flying cat and horse that she sometimes dated.*  If Supergirl isn't trying to see the best in everyone and trying to save the day while she basically fights with identity issues Clark Kent doesn't spend too much time pondering, she isn't really Supergirl.

real Supergirl is perky as all living hell