As I’ve pointed out in the past, one of the only drawbacks about doing a long form column like this one is that there are a ton of little stories and items that gets passed over for bigger topics and ideas. Fortunately, sometimes those odds and ends build up to the point where I can just do a fair sized column about a lot of little, cool things happening in comics and pop culture. I tend to buy a lot of trades used or discounted which means they tend to be a little old but part of my column has been about sharing cool stuff, especially if it’s cool stuff you may have missed. So here they are in rapid fire fashion, odds and ends.

 

The Black Beetle: No Way Out (Dark Horse)

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The hardcover of The Black Beetle: No Way Out came out in October and I have no idea how much press this got (I kind of remember reading about it in passing). Not nearly enough in my opinion. Francesco Francavilla has created a great pulp hero character and a solid story to go with it. The Black Beetle is a character similar to The Shadow or The Avenger in his look and methods but is still an original creation. The art style of Francavilla on this book is equal parts American pulp and European comic or film. The only drawback? Francavilla is getting a ton of work as a cover artist and it’s delaying the next book a little bit. But I think it’ll be worth the wait.

 

The Spirit: The New Adventures Archive

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I love The Spirit but the idea of buying all of the achieve reprints is daunting. 27 volumes, hard cover, fairly expensive. Recently I did make an exception to my completest rules and bought the “last volume” (DC Comics had done the initial archive reprints of The Spirit while Dark Horse did this last book but made it in a very similar style so it doesn’t look too out of place on your Spirit shelf) of the archive series, The Spirit: The New Advenutres. The New Adventures was a small series published by Kitchen Sink Press in 1997. The idea was to have modern comic creators take on The Spirit. People like John Ostrander, Neil Gaiman, Mike Allred, Kurt Buisek and in one of their few pairings since Watchmen, Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons. Like any anthology, the work is a little uneven but generally solid, especially the opening tales from Moore and Gibbons. I found this particular volume rather cheap at BMV in Toronto. Well worth a look.

 

Headphones Made Out Of Wood And Old Skateboards?

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A Quebec company is trying to get people to take a look at their headphones which are made of wood, aircraft aluminum and very little plastic. Great sounding headphones that if busted, can be easily recycled. I am incredibly intrigued and if you like this sort of stuff, take a gander at their Kickstarter.

 

DVD / Blu Ray Of These DC Shorts PLEASE!

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For the last couple of years, we’ve gotten a ton of DC Animated shorts. From the Super Best Friends to Teen Titans Go to the recent Batman and Batman Beyond offerings, these shorts have been anywhere from pretty good to awesome but they are all too short to really hold their own disc. The Batman vs Hugo Strange clip alone makes me pine for a new series in the DC Animated Universe.

 

I Need Your HELP!

So over the next few weeks, I’m going to try and put together a list of graphic novels that everyone should read. Maybe not own, but at least read. I’ve gotten a good head start but I’d love to hear from you folks. Please leave your suggestions and why you are suggesting it in the comment section below…

If you’re gonna geek out, GEEK HARD!