Category Archives: Timely

What Looks good in ComiXology’s Flash Sale

For once, “Flash Sale” actually means what it ought to!

A whole bunch of digital Flash collections from the Silver Age through the modern age are discounted on ComiXology this week for $5.99 each (even the long ones, like the Flash by Mark Waid and Flash by Geoff Johns collections), and dozens of individual Flash and Impulse issues are $0.99 each. Also included are Final Crisis: Rogues Revenge, Forever Evil: Rogues Rebellion, a number of Rogue-heavy issues, some Flash/Green Lantern crossovers, the main Flashpoint story, Rebirth, parts of Convergence, the Flash DC RetroActive specials, the Flash: Season Zero comic based on the TV series, the Tangent Flash issues, and more.

The later New 52 and DC: Rebirth books are on sale, but I figure you probably know already whether you’re interested in those, so I’m going to talk about the older books.

I would absolutely recommend the Flash by Mark Waid vol. 1-3 and Flash by Geoff Johns 1-3 collections. $6 for a dozen or more issues is an amazing deal, and there are some great stories in there. (Flash by Geoff Johns vol. 4 is a little more uneven than the first three, IMO.) The Manapul/Buccellato run from the early New 52 is also quite good, as are the two Morrison/Millar books with Paul Ryan and Pop Mhan (“Emergency Stop” and “The Human Race”). I’d also highly recommend the early issues of Impulse by Waid and Humberto Ramos.

You can find gems like the original Flash of Two Worlds in Flash #123, the first Superman/Flash race, “Nobody Dies” (Flash v2 #54), Wally meeting his younger self in Flash v.2 #0, the entire Trial of the Flash, and the first appearances of Jay Garrick in Flash Comics #1, Wally West and Weather Wizard in Flash #110, and Reverse Flash in Flash #139. The story with the Captain Cold Censored Flash cover is in here too. If you’re interested in the classic Silver Age Flash, now’s a good chance to pick up some of those collections as well.

If you’re on a budget, go with Flash: A Celebration of 75 Years. $6 down from $30 for this collection can’t be beat.

I wouldn’t bother with the Flash: Fastest Man Alive collections or Road to Flashpoint unless you really want a complete set.

Crowdfunding Campaign for William Messner-Loebs

A couple of weeks ago we wrote about William Messner-Loebs’ struggle with homelessness. You may remember him as the writer on The Flash during the late 1980s and early 1990s, who took over Wally West’s series and began a coming-of-age story that would play out over the next few years, as well as two years’ worth of Impulse stories later in the decade.

A gas leak at his home last year left it unlivable, and he and his wife have been living out of their car and in shelters since then. The comics industry has largely passed him by, so he’s been picking up odd jobs as a janitor and delivering food to pay off debt from health issues and to make ends meet.

His stories were infused with social awareness: Marginalized people like gay supervillains and (ironically) the homeless. Women scientists being gaslighted by their peers. Estranged families trying to reconnect. Big business dumping toxic waste in small towns. When Impulse’s hometown was threatened by a flood, all the local supervillains pitched in to help. Nobody stopped laying sandbags to attack each other.

There was a strong theme in all of his stories that people need to help each other, not turn a blind eye or tear each other down. And now it’s our chance to help him. The article last month linked to a crowdfunding campaign for the shelter they’ve been relying on. Now there’s a personal GoFundMe campaign that will go directly to Bill and Nadine Messner-Loebs. I’ve contributed, and I hope you will too.

Battle for the Net (please read!)

This is off our usual topic, but U.S. readers especially, please read on.

The FCC wants to eliminate net neutrality, the principle that ISPs should treat all traffic the same, and not block, throttle, or promote data based on what service you’re using or who you’re connecting to. But we can stop them.

What’s Net Neutrality? Simple: your cable company shouldn’t decide where you get your news, what businesses you buy from, which video chat services and streaming services you use, or who you talk to.

Why do we need it? It used to be an unofficial rule, underlying the way the Internet was built over the years, until ISPs started to break it. For example:

  • Multiple ISPs intercepted search queries and sent them to their own portals.
  • AT&T blocked Skype on the iPhone.
  • Verizon blocked tethering apps.
  • Multiple carriers blocked Google Wallet in favor of their own payment services.

In 2015, after a public advocacy campaign, the FCC made it official: ISPs in the United States are now required to treat all traffic equally.

So what’s the problem? There’s a new chairman in charge, and he wants to remove the rule.

No doubt cable and phone companies will go back to their old tricks. Plus they could slow down access to news sites that disagree with them, or charge websites extra for the privilege of reaching their audience (when they already pay for their upload connection), or slow down services owned by competitors (consider: Verizon owns Tumblr and Flickr now, and Comcast owns NBC) in favor of their own.

Rolling back net neutrality doesn’t help you, doesn’t help business, doesn’t help anyone but the existing carriers.

That’s why we’re joining the Battle for the Net — and you can, too. The FCC’s public comment period is still open. Contact the FCC and Congress (here’s a form), and tell them why Net Neutrality matters to you. Then spread the word.

Keeping the internet open is critical. Let’s work to keep it!

Cross-posted at K-Squared Ramblings