Monthly Archives: April 2011

Wizard World Los Angeles Is Back – But Why?

I put on my robe and wizard hat.So, Wizard has just announced the return of Wizard World Los Angeles Comic Con in September, stating that they’re filling “a real need for a Fall event that encompasses all the best that pop culture has to offer.”

The thing is, we’ve already got a Wizard con in the area (Anaheim Comic Con, running this weekend), and we’ve already got a fall convention of about the same size (Long Beach Comic Con in October). The three convention centers are all within 30 miles of each other, so they’re going to draw from the same pool of attendees, and the same pool of comics guests. And since Wizard is big on trying to present a uniform experience for all of their cons, we can expect Anaheim and Los Angeles to be basically the same.

I can only think of two reasons for Wizard to add Los Angeles at this time:

  • They’re planning to move back to the more well-known location after moving out to Anaheim last year. Is anyone here at Anaheim right now? Can you tell me whether they’ve announced dates for next year?
  • In keeping with past Wizard convention behavior, they’re trying to muscle out Long Beach for daring to step in and put together a successful convention from scratch (and one that actually focuses on the “Comic” part of “Comic Con”) when Wizard canceled WWLA 2009.

(via Bleeding Cool)

Quote: How Not to Respond to Requests For Underused Characters

If I go into a McDonalds and say “Hey, I love your McRibwiches. I don’t always see them all the time, though. When are you guys bringing back the McRibwich?”

the manager doesn’t flip me off and say “The McRibwich sucks, buy a Big Mac.”

— Comic Bloc message board poster Stephen Henel writes on DC’s approach to “Where’s Wally?” inquiries in a discussion of Flash #10.

Geoff Johns Talks Flashpoint, Dodges the Wally Question

So, even when asked point blank, “Are we going to be seeing Wally in Flashpoint at all?” Geoff Johns can’t bring himself to say anything more than “It’s more focused on Barry and the DC Universe.”

Look, we know Barry’s the star. We get that. But it seems that in a gigantic, sprawling event centered on The Flash, with a central miniseries, 16 miniseries and at least four one-shots telling side stories, there ought to be room for Jay Garrick (yeah, him too) and Wally West somewhere. Bart gets a miniseries, and even Professor Zoom gets a one-shot.

The question wasn’t, “Will Wally West be a major player?” It was “Will Wally West appear.”

How hard is it to say, “Yes, he’ll be there, but he isn’t the focus of the book.”

I can only assume at this point that Wally West isn’t anywhere in the event, or that if he is, it’ll be in line with his appearance in this week’s issue of The Flash: a cameo as part of Barry’s cheerleading section. Or dead. Because let’s be honest: DC hasn’t given me any reason to believe anything else.

Back when DC canceled their plans for Wally West backup stories, Geoff Johns assured fans that Wally would not only be fine — he was going to kick ass. I’m still waiting.

At this point, I’m beginning to wish DC would just stop talking about Flashpoint until it launches. (Or maybe I should stop covering it.) I was pumped at the beginning — finally, the Flash is at the center of a big DC event, and there will be room for everyone! And I figured on buying 5 or 6 of the tie-ins, a big jump from the one tie-in I bought for Blackest Night. But far from piquing my interest, it seems like every “Flashpoint Friday” kills a little more of my enthusiasm.

Anyway, head over to the full interview at IGN. He talks about Flashpoint and Green Lantern, and of course doesn’t reveal a whole lot, since this is spoiler-free “wait and see” Geoff Johns.

Review: Flash #11 — “The Road to Flashpoint”

On one hand, I found Flash #11 — chapter 3 of “The Road to Flashpoint” — to be a lot more engaging than the previous issue. On the other, it highlights some problems with the series.

I was disappointed to see that Francis Manapul didn’t draw this issue, though seeing Scott Kolins’ name was a relief. That said, while I normally like Kolins’ art on The Flash, it actually looks rushed, especially on the early pages. I have to wonder how much time DC gave him to draw the issue.

The pacing, however, is much better than the previous two issues. After an issue-long teaser and another issue that was 50% exposition, we actually get into the meat of the story here — a story very much about Barry Allen, the man who works as a police scientist, not the Flash who happens to be Barry Allen (which may be part of why I liked it better than #10).

It was nice to see the story actually address some of the problems with Barry’s post-Rebirth isolation, though I get the impression that this was intended to develop over more story arcs. As with the artist change, I can’t help but wonder what we might have seen if they’d been able to keep this book on time. Monthly from April 2010 through May 2011 would only have included two more issues, but the two Rogue Profiles wouldn’t have been added. Under those circumstances, Johns could have fit another 4-issue story between “Dastardly Death…” and “Road to Flashpoint.”

Geoff Johns does a good job of keeping Hot Pursuit’s motivation and methods ambiguous throughout the issue, keeping it unclear whether he’s causing or tracking the murders. The super-heroics kick into gear at the very end, with not one but two cliffhangers to be resolved in next month’s series finale…though with a title like “The Road to Flashpoint,” it seems pretty clear that it’ll wrap with some sort of transition. I expect the “last issue” to end in one of two ways: Either it will feature a teaser with Barry in the altered reality of Flashpoint, or it will end with a fade to white like all of DC’s “Zero Hour” tie-ins back in 1994.

So, let’s move on to some talk including SPOILERSContinue reading

Annotations: Flash #275, “The Last Dance”

As Flash comics go, issue #275 is right up there on the impact meter.  One of the definitive issues of the 1959-1985 volume, it molts characters and standards, experimenting with tone and depth not before seen in the Flash title.  It cast a long shadow over Barry Allen, extending to his death in Crisis on Infinite Earths. It is also the first recognizable installment in the drama that arguably ended with the return of Allen to the DC Universe proper, and eventually the current Flash series.

This is the latest installment in our breakdowns of writer Cary Bates’ Flash saga, leading up to Showcase Presents: The Trial of the Flash.  Links to additional artwork and research are included throughout this post.

UP TO SPEED: Last week, we witnessed the demise of Dr. Nephron and the escape of his deranged guinea pig, convict Clive Yorkin.  Barry teamed up with Detective Frank Curtis, a fellow cop who was investigating the heroin smuggling operation based in Barry’s police lab.  Iris’ concern over Barry’s attentions continued to grow, while an ESP-powered teenaged fan named Melanie once again established her mental hold on our hero.  Meanwhile, Yorkin trailed Barry home and found Iris, alone…


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