Archive | The Full Bleed

Non-Bay Area related content.

Who is DC’s Queen Bee Zazzala?

There are several Queen Bee’s in the DC Universe but there’s only one Zazzala of Korll. Queen Bee was a mostly forgotten Silver Age Justice League villain until Grant Morrison brought her back in the pages of his run on JLA.

Queen Bee Zazzala
Queen Bee Justice League of America #23 | Words: Gardner Fox | Art: Mike Sekowsky

Created by Gardner Fox and Mike Sekowsky, her first appearance was in Justice League of America #23.  Queen Zazzala hides a machine in the core of the Earth and threatens to blow up the planet unless the League helps her acquire an elixir of immortality (blackmailing the JLA into helping was a fairly common trope in those early days of comics). They don’t have a choice, so they agree to become “drone-workers” and help the villain. The team locates the vial but before handing it over Green Lantern secretly uses his power ring so she’ll never be able to open it (this is a questionable plan).

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Why You Should Start a Comic Pull List

A comic pull list is a customer subscription system offered by most comic book retailers. The system provides readers with the assurance that a title will be available even if it sells out on the stands. Additionally, it provides the retailer with a helpful ordering gauge so they don’t end up shorthanded or get stuck with copies that might not sell. The first step to becoming a reliable regular customer at a local comic shop is to establish a pull list.

Why start a comic pull list?

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Endgame Plus Dark Phoenix Equals A Secret Wars Film

We can preserve the X-Men and Avengers Universes while still bringing all of the heroes together. The stingers for Avengers: Endgame and X-Men: Dark Phoenix should start setting up a Secret Wars film. Here’s how…

Avengers Endgame plus Dark Phoenix equals Secret Wars film

Disney has acquired Fox and with it comes the Marvel’s X-Men and all of the related properties. We don’t know when we’ll start seeing mutants in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but we do know it’s coming. This fact is cause to celebrate for fans who believe the MCU should reflect the comics. For others, (*raises hand*) there’s some hand-wringing as to what Disnification might mean for what’s become one of the more cinematically adventurous Universes under the superhero film genre. We’d be happy if the X-Men stayed in their own Universe (also, I’ll admit I’m one of the few people who would be totally fine with the Spideyverse staying with Sony).

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Deep Dive: The Green Lantern Issue 2 (2018)

The Green Lantern issue 2 was released on December 5 and, much like the first issue, has been met with wide critical acclaim. The story is packed with nods to DC history and little nuggets suggesting a larger mystery is unfolding in the background. Once again, I’ve attempted to dive deep into the ink to puzzle out and annotate the many references Liam Sharp and Grant Morrison have packed into the issue. If something previously appeared in the deep dive for The Green Lantern #1 I’ll refer you to that post for the meat, but will add any second issue specific comments below. If something is new it’ll receive the full annotated The Green Lantern treatment.

The Green lantern issue 2 cover art

Liam Sharp’s cover The Green Lantern #2

Here are all of my Deep Dives so far:

Let’s get to it…

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Deep Dive: Grant Morrison’s The Green Lantern Issue 1

Grant Morrison’s The Green Lantern issue 1 hit shelves this month. The highly anticipated comic, with beautiful art and design by Liam Sharp and stunning colors by Steve Oliff, is Morisson’s first time writing Hal Jordan and diving into the rich history of the Green Lantern Corps. The writer, who’s previously tackled Wonder Woman, Batman, Superman, and the JLA, is notorious for his encyclopedic knowledge of DC canon and how he uses that knowledge to pack obscure references into his stories. This monthly feature (over)analyzes each issue and seeks to provide context and history to the characters, places, and things. So make yourself a Hal Jordan cocktail and enjoy this annotated break down of Grant Morrison and Liam Sharp’s The Green Lantern issue 1.

the green lantern

Seeing as this is issue one, we first need to catch everyone up on how Hal Jordan ended up where he is at the start of The Green Lantern issue 1.

How we ended up here.

Hal Jordan’s been having a rough few years. A sacrifice was required after a series of incidents that basically turned the Universe against the Green Lantern Corps. That sacrifice was the leader of the Corps, Jordan, who made himself a fall guy to save the reputation of the Lanterns. Working under secret orders from the Guardians he stole Krona’s power gauntlet from the Corps and went on the lam. During this time, the Corps disappeared from this Universe for an assortment of complicated reasons. Jordan’s continued use of the gauntlet slowly starts to transform him into the living embodiment of Will.

green lantern krona's gauntlet

Hal Jordan becomes living Will. Green Lantern Vol. 5 Issue 52 Art: Billy Tan | Color: Alex Sinclair

In an effort to save himself, he uses the last bit of his true self to become the first non-Guardian to craft a power ring. It was a badass moment in Jordan history (Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps: Rebirth).

He manages to find the Corps and bring them back. Their numbers are significantly reduced, so they need to rebuild. This effort is documented in Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps which ends with an epic battle against the Darkstars. In order to beat the Darkstars, the Corps teams-up with unlikely allies including General Zod, Hector Hammond, and Orion of the New Gods. Phew.

After all of this Jordan is understandably exhausted and decides to head back to Earth for some “unfinished business.” Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps concludes with Jordan darkening the doorstep of Carol Ferris. They make-out. End scene….

but wait! It doesn’t end there. His story continues in Green Lanterns. After what seems to be a rather short time reuniting with his longtime on-again-off-again girlfriend, Jordan decides to go on a trip to Space Sector 066 to unwind some more. His vacation is short-lived when the Corps finds itself against the wall thanks to a brilliant bit of subterfuge by Hank Henshaw, a.k.a Cyborg Superman, and the Ravagers. 

The story, by Dan Jurgens, is a long overdue full circle redemption moment for Jordan. For the last *squints and cries* 25 years, the destruction of Coast City and the resulting fallout has sort of been a weight around Jordan’s neck. In Green Lanterns, Henshaw is hell-bent on once again reducing Coast City to rubble. This time, Jordan, with the help of a cadre of Lanterns, is strong enough to defend his home city. Henshaw finds himself on the verge of losing to the Lanterns and is forced to flee with the Phantom Ring.

Here’s the status of the Corps right before Morrison picks up the storyline:

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Establishing the DC Shared Universe: Zatanna’s Search

In this modern age of comic-influenced pop culture we’re neck deep in shared universes and, increasingly, shared multiverses. It can be hard to imagine a time when that wasn’t the case. It can be even more difficult to believe we didn’t see the first true comic book shared universe until the mid-1960s. That’s when the daughter of the third most important character to debut in Action Comics #1 arrived on the scene in a quest to find her father. Zatanna’s search would take her on a winding path through six DC titles. As a result, it impacted several heroes and had repercussions on the DC Universe as a whole.

Zatanna's Search Justice League issue 51

Justice League of America Vol. 1 #51

Characters with their own titles crossing over with other characters is a common occurrence going all the way back to the birth of superhero titles. It’s difficult to pinpoint who can lay claim to the first ever superhero crossover.

The honor could possibly go to Lev Gleason Publications in 1940. That publisher teamed up the characters Silver Streak and Daredevil (not that Daredevil). It just barely preceded the first known team up of Marvel characters.  Marvel Mystery Comics #8 featured Namor and Human Torch going head-to-head for the first time. For DC characters, the first crossover medal goes to All-Star Comics #3 which saw the first appearance of the Justice Society of America. At the time, it was likely the biggest crossover in terms of number of characters featuring Flash (Jay Garrick), Green Lantern (Alan Scott), Hawkman (Carter Hall), Spectre (Jim Corrigan), Hourman (Rex Tyler), Sandman (Wesley Dodds), Doctor Fate, and Atom (Al Pratt).

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Essential Guide to Northern California Haunted Houses

Halloween is right around the corner and that means all of the Northern California Haunted Houses are putting dust on the furniture, hanging the cobwebs, and resurrecting monsters. If you’re the sort of person who enjoys having the living daylights scared out of you (or watching your friends scream in terror) we’re here to help.

Below you’ll find all of the haunted houses, creepy corn mazes, and petrifying paintball experiences within 150 miles of downtown San Francisco (in Southern California? Cool, check out our essential guide to Los Angeles Haunted Houses). This list is organized by earliest opening date so you can fit in as many scary weekends as possible.

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DC Universe Subscription: First Impressions

DC Universe is the new digital portal putting the many media iterations of DC, from comics to shows to movies, literally at your fingertips. Is the DC Universe subscription worth the introductory cost of $74.99 per year or $7.99 per month? I signed up for a year and here are my first impressions.

DC Universe subscription

This isn’t Marvel Unlimited. DC fans have been waiting for a DC digital service similar to what Marvel offers ever since…well…since Marvel launched Marvel Unlimited. In this early version of DC Universe, the company is offering both more and less than Marvel Unlimited. DC wants fans to have one place to find comics, television shows, films, and character biographies. They’re also attempting to build a community through discussion forums, regular giveaways, and a daily streaming show.

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C2E2 2017: 20 Autographs To Hunt At C2E2

The Midwest’s biggest comics and pop culture conference, C2E2, is coming up this weekend. This year the event features more than 100 panels and nearly the same number of special guests. C2E2 2017 features photo op and signature hunting galore with stars from The Flash, Stranger Things, Harry Potter, and more. If you’re hoping for sketches from your favorite comic book creators they have those, too. We’ve pulled out some of the highlights from both entertainment and comics.

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What is Zendaya reading in the Spider-Man: Homecoming trailer?

Since it was announced Zendaya was cast in Spider-Man: Homecoming there’s been a big question mark around her character. Early rumors that she’d been cast as Mary Jane Watson were quashed by the star in a November interview with ET Online. She verified her character is named “Michelle.” Last night we saw the first trailer for the film finds Zendaya reading in the cafeteria giving us our first glimpse of the actress in her role.

The moment doesn’t give us many answers other than showing us “Michelle” is an avid book reader. As a fan of seeing books on film and figuring out what characters are reading, I took time last night to squint at the blurry screen capture.

Here are the top three books in the pile with Wikipedia synopsis:

Fyodor Dostoevsky’s The Adolescent

The novel chronicles the life of 19-year-old intellectual, Arkady Dolgoruky, illegitimate child of the controversial and womanizing landowner Versilov. A focus of the novel is the recurring conflict between father and son, particularly in ideology, which represents the battles between the conventional “old” way of thinking in the 1840s and the new nihilistic point of view of the youth of 1860s Russia. Whereas the young of Arkady’s time embraced a very negative opinion of Russian culture in contrast to Western or European culture.

Another main theme is Arkady’s development and utilization of his “idea” in his life, mainly a form of rebellion against society (and his father) through the rejection of attending a university, and the making of money and living independently, onto the eventual aim of becoming excessively wealthy and powerful.

Henry James’s The Wings of the Dove

This novel tells the story of Milly Theale, an American heiress stricken with a serious disease, and her effect on the people around her. Some of these people befriend Milly with honorable motives, while others are more self-interested.

Kōbō Abe’s Woman in the Dunes

In 1955, Jumpei Niki, a schoolteacher from Tokyo, visits a fishing village to collect insects. After missing the last bus, he is led, by the villagers, in an act of apparent hospitality, to a house in the dunes that can be reached only by ladder. The next morning the ladder is gone and he finds he is expected to keep the house clear of sand with the woman living there, with whom he is also to produce children. He eventually gives up trying to escape when he comes to realize returning to his old life would give him no more liberty. After seven years, he is proclaimed officially dead.

As for the fourth book, there are many books that have “Democracy” and I haven’t been able to find a matching book spine image.

Zendaya Reading in the Second Spider-Man: Homecoming trailer

The second trailer dropped on March 27 and gave us our second peek into Zendaya’s character’s reading interests in Spider-Man: Homecoming. This time the visual is clear: W. Somerset Maugham‘s 1915 masterpiece Of Human Bondage.

SPider-Man Homecoming Zendaya reading Of Human Bondage

From Penguin Books:

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