Wednesday, 5 November 1997:

Quite A Haul

Let's start with the fun stuff: This week's comic book haul.

  1. I'm not, as a rule, a big fan of old comics (unlike, say, Al Schroeder). However, I've been a big fan of The Legion of Super-Heroes since I was a kid, and I still enjoy reading their older adventures. (Their adventures since 1982 or so, however...) So I picked up Volume 7 of the hardcover collections DC has been printing of their stories. It's not classic stuff, but there are some genuinely exhilarating moments, and it's interesting to see the then-teenaged Jim Shooter writing about stuff he was learning about at the time, such as basing one of his stories on his history text, and patterning Brainiac 5 after Mr. Spock.

    We've all gotta relive the fun parts of our childhood somehow, I guess!

  2. The other especially notable book is Alex Ross' new project, U.S.. Ross has done more for the painted variety of comic book artwork than anyone else in history (don't even mention the messy, unfocused work of Dave McKean, please!), and now he and writing partner Steve Darnall turn to DC's old Uncle Sam character, who here is turned into a homeless man who is having hallucinations of the US' past. Throw in some very witty and clever dialogue, and some sharp criticisms of the Republican Party (Holy cow! A blatantly liberal comic book from a mainstream publisher!), and you've got one interesting piece of work.

  3. The Maxx #33 takes another tangential turn into the incredibly bizarre. I haven't really enjoyed the aside stories that have peppered this series; I'm much more interested in what's happening to the regular characters. Unfortunately, this looks like a two-part tale. Sigh!

  4. I just skimmed Starman #38, in which Mist (not to be confused with MYST) offs Justice League Europe. It seemed kind of pointless to me. I'm not sure we needed further illustrations of Mist's evil. Shrug.

Other pickups: Strangehaven #7 (haven't read it yet); The Kents #6 (still an okay series, but kind of repetitive); The Hammer (by former Sandman and Micronauts artist Kelley Jones; haven't read it yet); Fantastic Four #1 (the new series with art by Alan Davis; not especially noteworthy otherwise); Judgment Day #3 (Alan Moore continues to have fun playing with Rob Liefeld's universe); JLA: Paradise Lost (not too good), and Teen Titans #15 (a complete waste of time; time to drop this series again. I was suckered in when some of the original Titans appeared for this storyline, I'm such a damn fanboy!).

A big week, but not a great one.

On the DIARY-L mailing list they've lately been talking about problems people are having with free web pages such as those provided by Geocities. People have had problems with pages disappearing, sites coming down, search engines apparently decided not to index free sites, and apparently the nation of South Korea has blocked Geocities for the whole nation because of a few pro-North Korea pages on there. I've been suspicious of most free Web page sites for a while, and haven't really bothered with them. Sounds like maybe this was a good decision on my part.

DIARY-L is a kind of weird place. I don't contribute a whole lot, as I find I generally don't have much to say about other peoples' journals in a public forum. (Usually I just send 'em e-mail directly. That's kind of the point, I guess. And I'm kind of using the phrase "kind of" a lot, ain't I?) The meta-discussions about the world of on-line journalling just don't interest me all that much, I guess. And I find the concept of an "on-line journalling community" (a phrase I hear a fair bit) rather strange. Having an audience is one thing, but seeking to be part of a "community" seems somehow contradictory to the nature of a personal journal.

Well, I don't think I'm spoiling their fun. At least I sometimes learn about some interesting pages through the list. (I did pass on joining the In His Own Words Webring, though. It seemed, I dunno, not my thing.)

Words I spell with two L's when maybe I shouldn't: Cancelled, Journalling, Travelled. A "Journallist" is someone who keeps a journal. A "Journalist" is someone who writes for a newspaper. I'm such a rebel. It drives our documentors at work up the wall.

I got an awful lot done at work today, including some substantial testing/debugging, and nearly reaching the endpoint on my current project. Hopefully I can make more great progress tomorrow before heading off to Windycon for the weekend.

Tonight I let the cats out in the building hallway and let them run around a while. Newton is pretty cowed by the experience - he's quite jumpy, and skulks around with his tail down. Jefferson trots around with his tail held high as if he owns the place. Every so often he looks back at me as if to ask, "Is this okay, Dad?" They've been playfighting quite a bit this evening; there's nothing quite like seeing a cat jump two or three feet straight up in the air when he's surprised!

Somehow the evening has quickly slipped away. Time to head to bed!

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