14th Jun2004

True Story: Swear To God – A Review

by Will

So, I’m slowly becoming what I fear most: a fanboy. I always wondered what would happen if I withdrew from society and found my sheer enjoyment in life in the pages of comics. I knew it would be a sad, hollow, existence, but I also knew that many people lived this life. Well, I think I’m joining that crowd.

No, it’s not that my life is THAT pathetic, but I do keep finding myself intrigued and inspired by things I’ve read in comic form lately. No, I’m not talking X-Men or Batman (Although I still love you, my Gotham Savior).

No, my comic of the moment is “True Story: Swear To God”, by Tom Beland. TS:STG is a cute, romantic tale of how Tom, a cartoonist from CA, met “The One” during a fluke trip to Walt Disney World. Unfortunately, Lily, the love of his life, was a journalist who lived in Puerto Rico, meaning their long-distance relationship would take place over 15,000 miles. Tom personally illustrated the entire story of their courtship, much of it on the plane ride home from their initial meeting, and it’s all presented here. You really get taken along for the rollercoaster ride, and you completely empathize with Tom.

It’s nerve-racking when you’re waiting for Lily to come to CA for Tom’s brother’s wedding. It’s endearing the way Tom reveals exactly what’s on his mind during their first magical night, fearing he may never see Lily again. It’s hilarious as Tom sticks out like a sore thumb in PR.

I realize it’s not a book for everyone, as I’m trying to get my mom into it, and she’s just not feeling it. I swear, though, this story made me cry. It’s not sad, nor happy, but it’s beautiful. It’s simply a beautiful tale.

I think it really affects me because I know it’s based on a true story. A true story with a happy ending. Yup, Tom and Lily are married & living in Puerto Rico now. Although I never saw the movie, I think I know how Jennine felt whenever she watched “Life Is Beautiful”; The whole thing about how love can persist even through the hardest circumstances. By no means does Tom go through anything as harrowing as the Holocaust, but that whole “love pervading despite obstacles” angle really seems to apply here. Anyway, I HIGHLY RECOMMEND this to anyone. You don’t even have to like comics, but it’s a cute & heartwarming tale. And I certainly don’t feel like such a curmudgeon anymore since reading it…

10th Jun2004

Brad Meltzer, Identity Crisis, Bad Ideas, and Jim Mahfood

by Will

Yesterday, I met novelist Brad Meltzer. Wonderful guy! You’ll never meet a nicer guy in comics. Did I say comics? Well, yeah. While Meltzer is currently on the New York Times Bestseller List for his work, such as “The Millionaires” and “The Zero Game”, he’s also been dabbling in comics for the past few years. His latest masterpiece is called “Identity Crisis”.

“Identity Crisis” follows a murder mystery in the DC Universe (Superman, Batman, but no Spidey or Wolverine). While the ID of the vicitm isn’t the focal point, the mystery IS. This storyline promises to shake up the world of comics for years to come. Now, they ALWAYS say this, and it’s RARELY true, but I really believe that it’ll be a great story, consequences or no.

So, I read the issue last night and was DYING to call James and tell him about it, but since he has a “No Spoiler” clause in our contract, I knew he’d jump through the phone and strangle me like I was a Cornell Republican or something. Anyway, I KNOW he’s gonna hate who the victim is. PLUS, LEX LUTHOR’S FRIGGIN BATTLESUIT WAS IN THE BOX!!! THE PURPLE AND GREEN ‘SUPER POWERS’ SUIT!! HE’S ALIVE….Sorry James, guess you can just call me “Joe Sabia”…

Speaking of comics, if anyone has a nice little neighborhood comic shop, I implore you to try to find a copy of Bad Ideas #1. It’s written by Jim Mahfood and a bunch of other guys, and basically they’re making fun of all the dumb ideas people submit to them when they’re at conventions. “Why don’t you guys write an anime story? Why don’t you write about a comic fan who meets a really hot girl and they both get powers?” These questions and others are answered here, in hilarious fashion. Also, the art’s by Mahfood, who has an awesome underground graffiti style going on. To see more of his work, check out http://www.40ozcomics.com

27th May2004

Answering Austin’s Trivia Questions

by Will

Hey Austin,

Zeta was voiced by Gary Cole on “Batman Beyond” and Diedrich Bader on “The Zeta Project”, which means the movie they starred in together was none other than “Office Space”, which may be the best movie of all time.

As for Christian Bale, I’m not sure how I feel. I HATE the suit (previewed in EW 3 weeks ago), but I haven’t seen enough of his stuff to have an opinion. Hell, I kinda liked Clooney, so that shows how credible I am when it comes to “Batman” portrayals.

Anyway, keep that trivia coming! Anyone can jump in. Just e-mail me, or put a msg in my guestbook! I simply can’t be stumped! 😛

13th Jan2004

Bruce Wayne As A Disguise For Batman

by Will

It’s been argued that, rather than “Batman” being a mask that Bruce Wayne wears, “Bruce Wayne” is actually a mask that Batman wears. “Bruce Wayne” died the moment he had to deal with his parents’ deaths. At that moment, a darker, brooding being was born: Batman. Haunted by the death of his parents, it drove him to aspire to perfection in every way possible. Sure, in public he adopts the Bruce Wayne persona, whom people see as friendly, funny, and, somewhat aloof. It’s all just a facade, though. No one can even conceive what really goes on in his head. He tries to keep the innocent happy and safe, but he can never really be happy himself. He’s sworn to protect the lives of families, knowing that it’s doubtful he will ever have one of his own. Basically, he’s a depressed, driven man, who suffers from a lot of hurt and loneliness. Yes, he’s just a man. And now, more than ever before, I think I’m beginning to understand why I’m drawn to him as a character.

22nd Aug2003

I’d Also Like My Own Alfred

by Will

I’d love more than anything to pull a “Bruce Wayne” right about now. Just drop everything, and travel the world. I’d learn from the best scientists, detectives, assassins, and fighters. Then again, Bruce Wayne was rich and I am not…

Still want to run away, though

🙁

14th Aug2003

The Animated Batman: An Unofficial Guide

by Will

My new Bible:

http://anbat.toonzone.net/