Sunday, January 26, 2014

Gay Print Media Is Not Dead

Tonight I got called out.  I went to an old gay establishment in my old neighborhood of Dupont Circle. (Washington, DC, folks.)  I lived off the 17th Street strip which is apparently the "gay area" now.  It used to be all of Dupont Circle.  Not just 17th Street.  (Thank you, Straight People.  Really.  Not.)  I never particularly liked Annie's, because I thought it was a dump.  But, once it was remodeled during the HGTV phase of the world --- it became cute.  It really is adorable.  On the way out of the door, I came across some of my old school (or is it "old skoolz"?) publications.  Newspapers.  Remember those?  I truly don't believe that print media is dead.  As a good friend of mine says to her technology advanced son, "The paperless system is a myth."  I believe it, too.  She's right.  Paper ain't going nowhere anytime soon.  (Yes, I'm a fogey.)  I gathered up these publications in my arms.  Because ... truthfully, this is what we used to do.  The kids would go out to party, but were educated on their way out.  So, I waltzed out of Annie's.  And, two feet out of the door some random queen on a cellphone on the street called me out for doing so.  We all laughed about it, because it was actually funny.  But, that's how we older gays got our community conscious news back in the day!!!  The Washington Blade and Metro Weekly!!!  (This DC MidCity is new to me.  But, looks cute.)  Oh, how I miss those days.  Everything is so digital now.  Yes, I sound old.  (Yes, I download my comics, BUT --- I buy the paper graphic novels when they eventually come out.)  Anyway, those were the good old days that these "new, young gays" know nothing about.  But, you know what?  I love print media and I still love books.  I support the Kindle and other electronic media because technology should constantly advance.  But, I still love the feel of a book.  I still love marking a book with a paperclip or folding the corner of a page or using an actual BOOKMARK.  And, let's face it --- every now and then I need to see how far I've gotten into a book.  Or how far I have to go.  Or what paper smells like.  (Yes, people, I will sniff a book.  It's a smell I've always loved.)  And, even though I haven't read those gay publications yet --- I'm glad I have them.  Oh, the memories.  I miss those days of clubbing and then coming out half cocktailed and sweaty from dancing, then finding out what had been going on in the world and what we needed to change for the better.  For everyone.

Monday, January 13, 2014

New Life and Comic for Josie and the Pussycats?

Maybe I'm just trying to get some stuff started, but it all began with this incredible drawing by Fiona Staples for the 24th alternative cover for Life With Archie: The Married Life.  In case you don't know, this series is about the life of Archie Andrews after he marries Veronica Lodge and not Betty Cooper.  The question of who Archie loved best --- Betty or Veronica was finally answered.  Then, I think America got mad. Then, he married Betty.  But, how?  Through an alternative timeline storyline and a walk UP Memory Lane.  The "Life With Archie" books still continue.  (SPOILERS: Ms. Grundy dies from cancer.  Cheryl Blossom has cancer.  Kevin Keller marries his partner, Clay.  Jughead gets Midge pregnant.  Moose acknowledges his anger issues and becomes Mayor of Riverdale.)  Recently, the series has been doing alternative covers, which is nothing unusual in the comics world.  Well, Josie and the Pussycats finally surfaced in an issue.  This STUNNING and BEAUTIFUL rendition by the obviously incredible Fiona Staples depicts a NEW Josie and the Pussycats.  (Really, it was just a guest appearance, but this interpretation has left me very hopeful that someday it will become a reality.) Archie Comics just put out Digital Exclusives of "She's Josie" (Josie Jones's first appearance in her own comic book) and "Josie and the Pussycats - The Complete Manga," (a short lived extra from "Archie and Friends").  With a new cartoon and extreme re-vamp for Archie and the Gang AND Sabrina The Teenage Witch (who celebrated her 50th anniversary) coming, maybe --- just M-A-Y-B-E ... Josie and the Pussycats will get another opportunity to shine.  Valerie Brown breathed new life into the group when she hooked up with Archie Andrews, thus creating a love-fest that everybody seems to love.  Even Betty and Veronica realize that they may lose their beloved Archiekins forever
But, what about Josie?  What about The Pussycats?!?  The beautiful cover by Fiona Staples makes me hope that Archie Comics will take a deeper look into this simple cover --- and give these gals another chance at comic stardom.  There's a Josie and the Pussycats "Digital Exclusive" coming in December 2014.  Yes, a whole damn year from now.  But, maybe that means good things are also coming for my favorite girl band.
 Archie Digital Exclusives
 Dan Parent makes them look --- GREAT!!!
Josie and the Pussycats MANGA!!!
We ALL know the cartoons.
I did love the movie. Especially, the look!

 The soundtrack ROCKED!!!!

 Yes, they had dolls!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

The New 52: Earth 2 – Lois Lane Lives!!!

Like with any change, I hesitantly embraced DC Comics New 52.  I applaud DC for venturing into new and different territory.  And, although I'm not interested in  all of their changes like the Teen Titans (Ugh!), some surprises were very pleasant.  Like Aquaman, all of the Justice League books (Dark and 'Of America') and the return of Earth 3's Crime Syndicate. (Yay!)  The heroes changed. So what?  Superman got younger.  Batman got more tolerable, raising a boy band of Robins.  Wonder Woman became Percy Jackson.  My heroes?  No.  Just new versions of them.  My brother softened the blow by likening the New 52 to comics going from Silver Age to a Golden Age.  I had to look at it as the same.  Golden Age to New 52.  The greatest casualty for me?

The relationship of Lois Lane and Superman.
Especially since he's dating Wonder Woman.  Yes.  Wonder Woman.  Fanboys must have ejaculated simultaneously everywhere! The plus?  Wonder Woman gets another book out of it.  So, that's cool.  (Aptly titled:  Superman/Wonder Woman.)  I know it's temporary.  But, I’m not here to talk about that.  I’m talking about one very interesting surprise:  The comic book:  Earth 2.  It’s an alternate reality where the war with Darkseid and Apokolips has claimed Wonder Woman, Superman and Batman as its first casualties and a new evolution of “Wonders” have begun appearing.  No Justice Society of America from the World War.  No Huntress, daughter of Catwoman and Batman.  (Yes, but no.)  A new era of heroes "reborn" with a great deal of cultural diversity.

But, you get what they give you.  Get onboard or get off.  I got onboard.

 Then, there was Lois Lane.


Yes, I'm talking about her again.  She turned 75 this year and she was commemorated with her own bookI’m sick of Lois getting killed off in order to set Superman off.  (I’m looking at YOU, Ms. Superman Injustice:  Gods Among Us! and Kingdom Come.)  Earth 2 was no better in killing off my favorite non-powered heroine, but it completely redeemed itself with …
--the consciousness of Lois Lane being reborn in the form of a female robot version of Red Tornado.  Personally, I’m fine with it.  It’s Earth 2.  It doesn’t affect comics continuum anyway.  A Gay Green Lantern.  A Black Hawkgirl.  A young Jay Garrick, Flash.  An Egyptian Dr. Fate.  A black Aquawoman.  A Jimmy Olsen so genius, he had to be locked away.  A gun-toting vengeful Batman who quickly killed the imprisoned Joker rather than release him.  (Whoever is beneath that cowl will be revealed in Earth 2 Annual #2.  Soon!)  A murderous re-born Superman as a Darkseid zealot.  And, newly revealed --- a black Kryptonian!!!

More importantly?  Lois Lane lives.
 And, I'm ready for it!!!