Thursday, 28 March 2013

Why Be Born?

 So immaterial spirits must come to the material realm in order to grow.  It's the only place where time is linear and thus the only place where one can experience change!  Otherwise there would be no way to populate the immaterial Universe. 

Think of the time that a human being must spend in the womb growing from a single celled organism into an infant before being born...The entire planet earth - scratch that...the entire mulitverse of linear, material existence (!!) is one big womb where we can develop into multifaceted beings from whatever we were before.  That's the actual reason for our existence! All that was needed was linear time...

Or at least, that's what I gather from listening to Grant Morrison.  He's a smart guy!  But if he ever offers you Kool-Aid, you may want to think long and hard before accepting...

Thursday, 21 March 2013

Who's a Geek??

I may have mentioned last week that I wanted to make a Batman and Robin mural out issue #18 which was dialogue-free and thus had a lot of awesome artwork uninterrupted by word balloons!  Considering how the comic is also such a poignant and tragic tribute to the fallen Boy Wonder, how could I resist?  So this morning I headed off to Staples for a ruler and an exacto-knife so that I could properly cut up and trim an extra copy of the comic that I picked up the other day...

Ok, so this is already a pretty nerdish activity for a 36 year old man on a Thursday morning, no?  Not done yet!  While at Staples I impulse bought a Justice League sticker set!  Oh and did I mention how I was dressed?  Keep in mind this was not some special occasion, these are just a few of the things that I just happened to throw on today:

-My trademark Superman Toque.

 -Beat up motorcycle jacket featuring a "Hand of the King" pin from the hit Television show, Game of Thrones.

-A Muppet Show T-Shirt, featuring the Muppets in a parody of the famous album cover "Abbey Road" by The Beatles.

-Star Wars Boba Fett boxer shorts (it's laundry day...these are normally reserved for "special" occasions).

So who are you calling a Geek? 

By the way, rather than a mural, I picked up some frames/shelving and put together a pretty nice looking tribute with some of my favourite scenes from Batman and Robin #18, a "Requiem" page with the artwork from Batman #18, and the entire issue of Batman #18 with the variant cover by Andy Kubert!  Hopefully I can get that one signed one of these days.  I also included the New 52 Batman figure, the Batman, Inc. Damian "Robin" Wayne figure (holding a Lego Batarang), the Arkham City Talia figure, and the "Mega Mini Kits" Bat Signal!  The whole dysfunctional family...Father, Mother and the son that they both let die...

So yeah, instead of scotch tape, I made a nice display.  That's as far as I go towards "growing up"...

Quick...Pop Psychology 101...what does all this say about me?

Friday, 15 March 2013

Pretty Positive Place!

I got nothin' in particular to talk about today so I'm just gonna spew out some stream of consciousness thoughts about my week!  It's been an interesting week filled with highs and lows and lows and highs, but ending in a pretty positive place I'm happy to report!  (Hey that's some nice alliteration!  I didn't even do that on purpose).  The first week back from vacation is always long, even if, in my case, it was only a four-day week.

Haha when I say highs and lows, I admit my lows are really not at all are some examples of these so-called "lows":

- I got the annoying "Harp Glitch" on my Simpsons: Tapped Out game for iPhone.  It is a glitch that made it impossible to play the game all week!  I cannot tell you how annoying that became as I'm addicited to this silly little game and had just built Burns Manor...Happily, the gltich was resolved as of this morning and boy was I happy to get back into my little "Springfield".  Remember when I used to have a flip-phone?  Hahaha....

- More comics this week mourning the (SPOILERS) recently fallen Robin aka Damian Wayne were released this week and while Batman and Robin #18 in particular is one of the best comics I've ever read, it is also SOOO sad.  It's so beautiful that I bought an extra copy in hopes of making some sort of Batman and Robin mural, perhaps later this afternoon...

-The Toronto Maple Leafs are on the worst slump of the shortened season this week, losing four games in a row!  They played so well in 3 out of the 4 games, too...just came up a tiny bit short against some really difficult teams...Oh well, there's always Winnipeg on Saturday...

Anyway, you get the idea...WHAT a hard life!!

I heard this week (and I honestly have NO idea if this is accurate) that something like 47% of the people on the planet don't have access to indoor plumbing.  Can that be true?

Canada rocks! Geesh now I almost feel like I'm gloating.  Um...well...I'm very grateful, even if I don't always show it?  Doesn't it seem silly to complain in this context?  Okay!  Have a nice week!

Friday, 8 March 2013

Vacation Checklist

What to do on my Vacation!

-Watch The Dark Knight Returns Part 1 & 2 for the fourth time...CHECK
-Play a ton of Xbox...CHECK

-Visit Parents...CHECK
-Watch Hockey...CHECK

-Purchase new couches...CHECK
-Read some comics...CHECK
-Write about My Favourite Comics...CHECK
-Play every guitar in the room...CHECK

-Walk to the Comic Book Store...CHECK
-Read MORE comics..CHECK!
-Play some more Guitar...CHECK
-Another Hockey game!...CHECK

-Write about My Favourite Transformers...CHECK
-Have a giant Transformers War on the living room floor, thus negating earlier tidying...CHECK

-Read ALL the comics...CHECK 
-Think of SOMETHING to talk about at Stryder's Dementia...CHECK
-Go for a walk and get some groceries...
-Clean up Giant Transformers War...
-EVEN MORE Guitar!

-Even MORE Hockey!!!...

-Back to work...someone's got to pay for all of this...

And to think some people think you have to GO somewhere to have a good time on your week off! 

Friday, 1 March 2013

A Tribute to Damian Wayne aka Robin The Boy Wonder!!

***This post contains SPOILERS for Batman, Incorporated #8 (Volume 2).  It's already heavily spoiled in all manner of media, but forewarned!

So everyone knows about Batman and Robin, right?  Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson...the secret identities of the Dynamic Duo as they were originally created and as they were popularized via the Batman TV show, various movies and Batman: The Animated Series.

Some people may recall that in the 90's, Robin was killed by the Joker!

It was NOT Dick Grayson that died.  By that time, in the comic books, the original Boy Wonder had grown up, gone to college and began fighting crime on his own as Nightwing.  The Robin who died in the 90's was newcomer Jason Todd.  He had taken over as Robin, but sadly, couldn't quite make the cut...

The unfortunate Jason was replaced after some time passed by yet another, a young prodigy named Tim Drake who actually figured out Batman's secret identity!  Tim was worried about Batman after Jason died...the Dark Knight had become TOO dark.  He wanted Dick Grayson to return as Robin so that Batman would have someone to talk to, I guess...instead, of course, Tim eventually became Robin himself.  He even became famous enough to appear in season 4 of the Animated Series and in season 2 of another DC Superhero cartoon, Young Justice!

Fast forward several years to 2006 and Grant Morrison starts writing Batman.  One of the first stories he pens is called Batman and Son.  In this story, Batman learns that he has a secret 10 year old son named Damian Wayne!!  Damian was a genetically perfect test-tube baby conceived by Batman and Talia Al Ghul, daughter of the immortal Ra's Al Ghul, one of the Bat's worst foes.  Legend has it that originally young Damian was going to die heroically at the end of the 4-issue Batman and Son.

Then...he didn't.  Instead, he lingered on, appearing off and on in comics until 2008, when BATMAN "Died".  Bruce Wayne was killed by Darkseid (the DC Universe's version of the Devil, essentially) in a story called Final Crisis.

Well, with the original Batman, Bruce Wayne, "dead", (he was actually trapped in prehistory) new heroes had to rise to protect Gotham City from the assorted fearful and superstitious lot of psychopaths and fiends!  These heroes??  the All-New BATMAN AND ROBIN!

Damian "Robin" Wayne & Dick "Batman" Grayson

"Batman and Robin can NEVER die!!"  Proclaims Dick Grayson, as he becomes the new Batman!  His Robin?  Of course, his mentor's son...trained since birth by the League of Assassins, he turns his back on his mother's evil ways to embrace the values of his father...Damian Wayne!!!

Cue one of the best runs EVER in Comics, as Grant Morrison writes Batman and Robin starring Dick Grayson and Damian Wayne, and everything old is new again!  At first, Damian's an insufferable, arrogant little jerk whom everyone barely tolerates.  Tim Drake fans, in particular, were not too happy that Damian claimed the Robin identity (Tim became "Red Robin" and went off on his own, solo adventures).  Eventually though, the little guy (he's only 10, remember!) just proved too interesting to resist!  After 7 years of Damian, I find to my surprise that he's become just about my favourite character in comics!  Most definitely, my favourite Robin EVER.  Interestingly enough, the dynamic is very similar to the original Batman and Robin, simply in reverse!  Damian is a lot like his father...dark and brooding, whilst Dick's unsinkable optimism remains....creating a serious Robin and a jolly Batman!

Alas, all things must pass...Bruce eventually returns to reclaim the Cape and Cowl and create Batman, Incorporated...and Talia Al Ghul isn't content to let him keep their son to himself!  The clock starts winding down on young Damian once more...

This week, in Batman, Incorporated Volume 2 issue #8, after 7 years, the unthinkable happened.  Damian finally ran into a fight he can't win, and fufilled the destiny he was originally scheduled to face back in 2006.

I won't go into detail regarding his final moments...suffice to say, it served the story very well.  Regardless, I wish it hadn't happened.  Not just because Damian was my favourite Robin, but because who wants to read about a 10 year old kid dying?  Particularly Batman's own flesh-and-blood son?  I hear enough about children dying and parents grieving in the newspapers...I don't need it in a comic book, too.

Well, Jason Todd came back from beyond the grave all those years ago.  As a matter of fact, just about everyone who's ever died in comics eventually returns.  It's the nature of the medium.  Not only that, but there are still 4 issues left of Batman, Incorporated before Grant Morrison leaves the title and the Batman universe with issue #12!  Mr. Morrison is not generally known for being an angst-ridden, depressing writer, and maybe this death isn't what it seems, despite the media frenzy trying so hard to convince us of the sincerity of poor Damian's demise.  Only time will tell, but I trust Grant Morrison as a writer and expect his epic to conclude well! 

Regardless, this death happened, and it had an emotional impact on me.  I'll miss Damian and I'll be bummed to have to read about Bruce and Dick and Alfred and everyone being sad over the lad.  The only redeeming quality?  He did indeed die a hero.  Robin, the Boy Wonder...

R.I.P. Damian Wayne (September, 2006 - February 2013)
He was the best...No matter what anyone thinks.