Saturday, November 27, 2010

1991-92 Impel DC Cosmic Cards #64- Nightshade

Get a load of Paris Cullins' very, er, womanly take on Nightshade. Kink was the think, I figure. I can see where the Charlton costume was a bit dated, even in the '60s, so I dug this Post-Crisis revamp get-up. Still, those shades and the unitard look are very '80s. Given her original cover as a celebutant, it might have been cool for Nightshade to be the type of character to routinely alter her style to match the changing times. Instead, the '90s turned her into some zebra pattern banshee, and the '00s restored her swinger skirt for some sort of retro-goth ensemble. Girl needs a queer eye, instead of Lydia Deetz on 'shrooms.

More Impel DC Cosmic Cards

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Atomic acCount for February, 2011


It’s a new team and direction for the Titans. Deathstroke and his mercenary team – including Cheshire, Tattooed Man and other surprise members – burst out of BRIGHTEST DAY #0. Get in on the ground floor as the team is hired to assassinate The Atom. And for this team, failure is not an option! Collecting TITANS #24-27 and the TITANS: VILLAINS FOR HIRE SPECIAL #1.

On sale MARCH 23 • 160 pg, FC, $14.99 US
See Ryan Choi butchered again in trade paperback.


The “Family Reunions” arc concludes as the Tattooed Man confronts his inner demons after murdering his son’s killer. And bursting out of last month’s SHAZAM one-shot, Freddie Freeman (a.k.a. Shazam) takes on Osiris. After the lightning and thunder settles, one of these heroes will fall.
On sale FEBRUARY 9 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US
I think I ordered that special, but I doubt it will have much to do with the Mighty Mite. That's clearly a B-Story until some big multi-part arc involving lots of guest stars soon enough.

JLA/THE 99 #5
The first-ever meeting between DC Comics’ JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA and Teshkeel Comics’ the 99 continues as both super teams witness the experimental “City of Tomorrow” literally transformed from the world’s greatest hope into a deadly threat to world peace! As Dr. Ramzi’s dream of global harmony melts before their eyes, can the united 99 and JLA reverse the damage?
On sale FEBRUARY 23 • 5 of 6 • 32 pg, FC $2.99 US

Captain Atom
Written by JUDD WINICK

Mind-controlling mastermind Maxwell Lord is targeting the members of the defunct Justice League International in this hardcover collecting the first 12 issues of the twice-monthly series tying into BRIGHTEST DAY. Now, surviving members Booster Gold, Captain Atom, Fire and Ice must stop him from destroying the entire Super Hero community.
On sale APRIL 13 • 320 pg, FC, $39.99 US

So many signs the end is nigh. The bi-weekly begins to trade, starting with an oversized hardcover I could have sworn Keith Giffen co-wrote...


Written by JUDD WINICK
Art and cover by SAMI BASRI
Power Girl fights alongside the Justice League International, and they’re moments away from uncovering Max Lord’s master plan. Can Power Girl convince others to join their cause? As the battle of this lost generation of heroes comes to a head, sides are chosen and partnerships are forged!
On sale FEBRUARY 23 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US
The build up to the big battle begins...

Written by JUDD WINICK
Issue #19 art by JOE BENNETT
Issue #20 art by AARON LOPRESTI
1:10 Variant covers by KEVIN MAGUIRE
DC’s biweekly JUSTICE LEAGUE event continues!
In issue #19, Justice League International is finally joined by Power Girl! But even with their combined strength, will they be able to track Maxwell Lord down in time to save Blue Beetle?
In issue #20, all of the pieces are finally in place, and Max Lord’s ultimate plan finally reveals itself. This is a special can’t-miss issue featuring Max Lord’s origin and the reason he’s made it his life’s work to snuff out metahumans, aliens and the entire Super Hero community.
Retailers please note: These issues will ship with two covers each. Please see the Previews Order Form for more information.
Issue #19 on sale FEBRUARY 9
Issue #20 on sale FEBRUARY 23
32 pg, FC, $2.99 US
32 pg, FC, $2.99 US
Well, it's almost over,  forging a legacy of awesome covers and retarded retcons.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

2010 Justice League of America #217 Twin Pocket Folder and Notebook Style #3009DC

I can't say for certain if I was introduced to the Atom through his segments on the '60s The Superman/Aquaman Hour of Adventure cartoon, the better animated Super Friends, or, least likely, from actual comic books. What I can say is that George PĂ©rez's covers to early '80s issues of Justice League of America made a big impression early on, although the Atom didn't exactly stand out on JLofA #217...

Have you spotted the Mighty Mite yet? Damian at The Tiny Titan Blog used to draw a circle to point Ray out, but I'm going to give you a bit more time if you needed it. Anyhow, this is one of my all time favorite covers, so when Rob Kelly blogged about a stretchable fabric book cover, I pricked up my ears, even though I had no use for such a thing. Then The Irredeemable Shag posted about a notebook with the art at Firestorm Fan, and after I showed it to my girlfriend, she bought me a whole batch, including pocket folders with their corresponding notebooks. Thanks, Shag!

Back Cover:

By now, you should have spotted the Atom at the lower left corner. Originally, the Tiny Titan stood on the UPC box, which came in handy. That got erased on the folder and notebook, for Ray's just kinda falling through space.

Notebook Front Cover:

Most of the bottom row heroes were victimized in translation, as Black Canary, Green Arrow, Aquaman and Elongated Man all had their legs amputated. You might think the Atom escaped harm, but in fact, he was targeted for special treatment. As you can see above, the bottom hole punched out of the notebook kneecapped the World's Smallest Super Hero! It'll be so much harder to use an eraser on your desk as a trampoline with only one leg! By comparison, the Atom got off lucky on the folder, with only his right hand perforated. I just don't have the heart to pop those things out for placement in my three ring binder.

Notebook Back Cover:

Monday, November 15, 2010

2009 SDCC Golden Age Atom Cosplay photo by Matt Kindt

Jeff Lemire posted this photo on his blog after last year's San Diego Comic Con of Justice Society of America members Dr. Mid-Nite, Hourman, Jay "The Flash" Garrick and an accurately ripped Al Pratt. Aside from probably being a mite tall, "Pratt" is excellent, no?

Dragon*Con 2011 CosPlay

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Firestorm the Nuclear Man #91 (November, 1989)

After Alan Moore revised Swamp Thing into an Earth Elemental, it was only a matter of time before somebody felt compelled to complete the quartet. I believe Red Tornado began shifting into the Wind Elemental in 1985's Justice League of America Annual #3 during the Crisis on Infinite Earths, although he probably wasn't dubbed such a thing for a few more years. John Ostrander turned Firestorm into the Fire Elemental, and with the creation of Naiad as the Water Elemental, ignited "The Elemental War."

I think somebody had the bright idea at one point to try to make Captain Atom the Quantum Elemental, which blessedly never took, but Nathanial Adam did get a cameo during the aforementioned four-part story arc. On base, the Captain felt a nagging sense of being needed elsewhere, and a touch of dissociative identity disorder, but dismissed both out of a desire to not be bugfug crazy like his enemy Major Force.

A couple of issues later, the war was over, and Red Tornado was in need of a new android body to help him manage his anger issues. The elemental incarnation of Firestorm had sworn off using his transmutation powers because objects effected by them were structurally unstable, but he was convinced by Swamp Thing to make an exception this one time. Tornado was a tad (understandably) hesitant, and offered a name capable of providing a more permanent solution: Captain Atom!

Wh-what?!? Nathanial Adam? The guy who let himself get blown up as part of a military experiment after losing a murder case? Even the brilliant scientist Charlton version, Allen Adam, wasn't one of those ridiculous Silver Age polymaths that could just randomly up and build a robot. Nathanial Adam, while no dingaling, was no rocket scientist either. I guess both characters had their history with Nate, though. "I know Captain Atom. A... fair choice." Fair? Was Firestorm still a Russkie, because we know how the Captain feels about Russkies?!

Anyhow, Firestorm (the guy known for puffy sleeves and flared shoulder pads) and Red Tornado (who accessorized a red & yellow striped costume with a blue vampire collar cape and a traffic arrow on his forehead) combined their awesome anti-aesthetic to create an exceptionally hideous fashion crime punishable by fines levied against DC Comics in nine states. Red Tornado, even as a robot with multiple long term wardrobe malfunctions on record, was aware that there was something "stiff-- strange" about his ensemble. Reddy (who was awful yellowy all of a sudden) flew to get a new body from Captain Atom as swiftly as this "vivified shell" could carry him, and I understand a federal couture statute prohibited this outfit from ever being seen or mentioned again. You can totally tell Captain Atom had a hand in the next (birthday) suit too, as Red Tornado was essentially a monochromatic "naked" dude for the next several years.

Thanks to Shag for supplying the above scan, as I've never read the issue, but always welcome Captain Atom material on this blog. I will be reading his coverage of "The Elemental War" at Firestorm Fan. Also, the Red Tornado end of the story will be handled by Doug at Red Tornado's Path, which will offer a wealth of scans related to the appearances. Follow the links below to experience the tale for yourself!

The Elemental War

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

1993 Mayfair Games DC Heroes Role-Playing Game Third Edition Terminator Entry

I was a Deathstroke the Terminator fan back in the day, collecting his entire (mostly rotten) series before growing bored with the character. However, killing Ryan Choi makes him an Atom foe, and Lord knows the Tiny Titan needs more of those (in quantity and quality.)

Slade Wilson has a Dexterity of 10, comparable to Batman & Bronze Tiger. His Strength of 6 is max human, 900-1,600 lbs. Body of 7 withstands small arms fire, like Aquaman and Hawkman. Intelligence of 8 seems a bit high, in Nightwing's realm, but I guess his enhanced brainpower accounts for that. Will of 9 allows one to override self-preservation to enter battle, like Sgt. Rock or Martian Manhunter. Mind of 10 indicates an individual with the self-discipline to undergo torture with grace, like Eclipso and Wonder Woman. Influence of 6 can hold the attention of a large audience, as Black Canary and other JSAers can. Aura of 6 rates about the same, along the lines of Aquaman or Queen Hippolyta. Spirit of 6 expresses a security of belief one is willing to die for, like Huntress and Booster Gold.

Deathstroke had some okay special powers, but his skills really level him up, like a 9 in acrobatics, 8 in charisma, a 9 Martial Artist, 11 in Military Science, 9 Thief, 8 Vehicles and 12 Weaponry. Under those terms, you can see how he could threaten metahumans seemingly outside his weight class.

More Mayfair 3rd Edition for Today: