The digital comics controversy

January 29, 2008

The Comics bulletin website (formerly known as SBC) posted my article on downloading digital comics.

Speaking of comics, here’s another funny Big Bang Theory clip in which Sheldon and the gang invite Penny to a Superman movie marathon: (I love this show!)

The great MMORPG debate: DDO vs. WOW

January 25, 2008

Lately I have been testing out a lot of different MMORPGs during my down time. (That’s massive multiplayer online role playing game for all you non geeks.)

I’ve never been a big gamer, but occasionally I have been known to buy a game or two for my computer. Back in the day, my brother and I used to play the o.g. Warcraft: Orcs vs. Humans and then graduated to Warcraft III.

This past holiday season I got a gift card to Best Buy so I used it to get a copy of Wow. Blizzard games allows you a free 10 day trial to try out the game, but if you buy it you can also play for a month for free. Most MMORPGS are subscription fee based, meaning you have to pay a monthly fee to continue playing.

After I got a bit tired of Warcraft, I moved on to Dungeons and Dragons Online Stormreach and I am currently enjoying that one, even though I am just a third level Paladin.

I am thinking of getting Guild Wars. The game is $30 but when you buy it you purchase a key which allows you to play the game forever without any subscription fees. Which game do you guys play? Which do you think is better?

Here’s a funny video from The Big Bang Theory, which is one of my favorite new shows. It’s about a group of physicists who move into this hot girl next door to them and how they interact. I love this show’s references to geeky things. Here’s a great scene of them playing a MMORPG.

A day at the track

January 22, 2008

The long holiday weekend was a good one thank you very much. My brother and my nephews came over and we went to Santa Anita to check out the horse races.


I had never been, even though I had been to Hollywood Park, but I worked at a roofing company 10 years ago in Arcadia and never bothered to check out the park,

so I was glad I did and my two nephews loved it. Here are some pics of our day at the race track! We had a blast even though we didn’t win much money.

Me, little Joe and little Anthony



Spiderman: the big Marvel retcon

January 18, 2008

Whoa! A second post the same week? Yep, well there’s been so much buzz about the Spiderman retcon on “Brand New Day” that I could not ignore bringing you up to speed. Mary Jane is history? Say it ain’t so Joe.

The stack guys do a good job of analyzing this one with a little assit from Erislaughs.

Just in case you want to know my thoughts, here they are in vivid color!

Buffy #10: Anywhere But Here

January 16, 2008

buffy10-copy.gifI had a free day from my job at school because I switched days with one of my co-workers who needed the day off. That doesn’t mean I am idle however, I went to cover a meeting of the SGV Coalition of Chambers this morning and tonight I am going to a meeting of the Walnut Planning Commission. Then of course, I have to write the articles.

Yet, I am taking a short break to do a mini review of the latest issue of Buffy season eight which came out sometime last week. So here goes:

Joss Whedon comes back to the writing chores and as always, when it’s the main man doing the writing you know that there are going to be some watershed moments or something which advances our characters will happen. This holds true for the most part on this issue, though it’s a more subdued conversational issue to give the readers a breather from Vaughn’s action packed story arc featuring Faith.

A pleasant surprise this issue is the return of my favorite Buffy artist Cliff Richards. Richards worked on a lot of the 63 previous issues Dark Horse printed before season eight and it’s pure joy having him back drawing our favorite characters. This isn’t intended as a knock against Georges Jeanty who I think does a fantastic job on a regular basis pencilling this comic, but it is refreshing to have Richards back, if only on the occasional issue. I simply loved his work on both Buffy and Purgatori. Artwise, some things didn’t work this time, was I the only one who thought that was Riley on page 2 when in actuality it was supposed to be a gag about Daniel Craig? Plot wise, this issue is very strong, nothing in the Buffyverse stays unchanged for long, Willow has added flight to her repertoire of magic induced powers and we finally get the return of a character which brought much consternation to some of the show’s fanbase, (it’s a 7th season character in case you haven’t yet figured out who!) Whedon manages to fabricate tension between Buffy and Willow, but we have yet to see if this is something that was resolved or if it’s going to be a lingering thing between the two. Whedon masterfully (and perhaps maddeningly) leaves it open ended.

The scenes between Dawn (who’s still a giant) and Xander provided great comic relief and were nice moments of characterization between the two. Other writers can take over these characters, but only Joss has lived with them so long that he can do wonders with them. Sometimes the pacing of this comic book is slow and it tries our patience, but this was a well paced, well written offering.

Updates: John Walsh is coming to West Covina

January 11, 2008

Here are the updates. It’s been a hectic beginning to the year for me, as I am sure it has been for many of you as well. Wendy is going on a mini vacation for a friend’s wedding but I decided not to go because I need to save money to fix my car or maybe buy another set of wheels.

The comic book website I contribute to is changing its look and name and now it will be called Comics Bulletin. I took a look at an advanced version of the redesign and it looks pretty snappy.

john-walsh-300-dpi.jpgI’ve been getting swamped with review books on .pdf format so I am happy and hope to get to most of them this weekend. I will write up some mini reviews for this blog. I’ve been quite busy with my job at school and Saturday John Walsh is doing some event in West Covina and I have to cover the event and also take pictures for the Walnut paper. I am glad I got this assignment as I haven’t had the chance to shoot anything in quite some time.

20880_282wh.gifAlso, the NFL playoffs continue this weekend. San Diego has a tough task, two games away from the Super Bowl but having to go into Indianapolis to tangle with the Colts is no easy task, especially without Antonio Gates who got injured last week. I am hoping our defense will rise to the occasion and can harass Payton Manning long enough for us to win. Go Chargers! Beat Indy!!

Artist and comic book of the year

January 4, 2008

This is a tough category to pin down. There are so many great artists working today including Gabriel Ba, Steve McNiven, Ivan Reis, I could go on and on. However, my nod of artist of the year goes to Leinil Yu whose artwork on Marvel’s New Avengers continues to impress me month after month.
One has to get used to Yu’s style which is best expressed through crowded fight scenes, though he usually does a great job of rendering our favorite heroes as well as depicting a quiet at home scene between Luke Cage and family. Yu is a multifaceted talent whose line work seems at first overcrowded with detail but at closer inspection shows a craftsman developing his unique style. I enjoy his work very much, from a shot of the New Avengers fighting a thousand Ninjas to more subdued every day shots. Yu’s work is both distinctive and great.
Comic book of the year.
OK this is the big one! There were so many good books out there this year that made this a tough choice, from Sinestro Corps to New Avengers. These are the titles which kept me coming back for more, but the comic book of the year has to be Captain America.
Hands down, this was the best comic book of the year and managed to do so by engrossing the readers with the after math of the asassination of the titular character. We gasped in horror at every development, went through the trials and tribulations along with the Winter Solider and the Falcon and relished in the way a great villain was brought back: The infamous Red Skull. This comic had it all, terrific artwork by Steve Epting and dramatic plot twists by Brubaker. Nothing came close to being as good for me in 2007. There you have it, the book of the year!