9 Happy Things in 2017

2017 hasn't been the kindest year. In fact, it often reminded me of the scene in Twin Peaks when Laura Palmer’s other version lets out the endless, silent, scream inside the red room. Yup, that was 2017. But that doesn’t mean it was all bad. In fact, there were some genuinely wonderful, lovely, and unforgettable moments of bliss and happiness through the year. Especially when it came to my enjoyment of pop culture. 2017 was definitely the year where I started to get a better hold on how I enjoy and consume my pop culture. One thing they don’t tell you when you start a Phd, is that it will really mess up how you approach everything from reading to watching movies. When the overwhelming amount of your time is suddenly focused on watching TV or movies, and reading everything in sight, those activities start to become your job, instead of your free time or a way to relax. After finishing the thesis and defending, it was noticeably difficult to just read something for fun. Even sitting …

Raku Grill/China Town/Vegas Adventure

I need to fess up to my ignorance of China Town in Las Vegas. Living a huge chunk of my life near Vegas, and all the times I have taken road trips to visit, I just never realized China Town was there, or how amazing it is. Maybe I was just too dazzled by the strip and never took the measly 5 minute drive away from traffic and crowds to check it out. Or maybe my head was too full of ridiculous notions about how sinful and evil Vegas is to dare explore and, the gal, enjoy my time there. I would like to believe that China Town just wasn’t really there, or as pronounced, but let’s be truthful, the blame for missing out on some amazing food is entirely at my feet. Fortunately, getting to tag along as my partner presented research and won awards at a medical conference meant I had time to explore, and have one of the best meals of my life. Spending time on the strip and in the casinos of Las Vegas can net you some great meals. But too long there and you notice that most places are designed f…

She's a Wonder, Wonder Woman

There is an old adage when it comes to the DC Comics Trinity: If you want to stop a meteor, call Superman. If you want to solve a crime, call Batman. But if you want to end a war, call Wonder Woman. I feel like Patty Jenkins absolutely understood this idea when she started making the Wonder Woman film.

In the week leading up to finally getting to see the film, my social media was sprinkled with promoted ads that suggested I watch Batman VSuperman to, "Get caught up on Wonder Woman". Yes, she was in that movie. Yes, she was the only good thing in that movie. I would be happy to rewatch just her scenes in that movie again. Is there a 10 minute version of that movie? But let's get real, I don't eat shit before I go to a Michelin restaurant, and I don't need that movie to make me worry about going to see Wonder Woman. I had high personal expectations going into the film. DC's track record has been terrible film wise. BvS was borderline unwatchable. Suicide Squad

Behold, The Iron Fist...Yeah, the white guy.

One thing that I have loved about every one of Marvel’s slate of Netflix shows is their opening scenes. Daredevil opens with the accident that would define Matt Murdock’s life and then transitions into the dark of the confessional booth. Jessica Jones pulls us in by letting us see the world through her camera lens. It sets up the way she deals with most of her city now; at a distance. Because if you get too close, things get rough. Just ask the guy she throws through her own door in the next scene. Luke Cage starts us off with, arguably, the deepest sense of place and culture. Pop’s Barbershop is full, hopping, and discussions about basketball and the dominance of King James are a bedrock of the day to day. The one thing that all of these opening scenes have in common, is that they communicate place, space, and character in such easy and effective ways.
When I fired up the Roku to start Iron Fist, I was waiting for that moment, and I got it. Outkast’s “So Fresh, So Clean” starts up as …

Holiday Disturbance

Well, as most of you should know, a new Batman movie is out this week. And in this funky new religion of mine, that means a high holiday. So the blog this week will be a little late, as I'm going to be watching a full marathon of the Nolan films tomorrow. But please come back for the next update, we have a week of female led books, plus recommendations of new series, and my take on announcements from Comic-Con. It promises to be a big week. See you after the movie.

Holy Days of the New Religion

The Pull List:

Batman Earth One - DC
Batman #11 - DC
The Walking Dead #100 - Image

Well, there was no post last week. The 4th of July holiday kind of got in the way. Not that comics weren't delivered, but I was spending the holiday in St. George with my girlfriend and didn't get around to my comics until Thursday. And to be blunt about it, getting my comics on a different day really threw me off. I was surprised by how much it threw me off.  The title of this blog, Comic Book Sabbath, is a play on a joke I had with one of my ENGL 2010 classes. A student was worried that they wouldn't have enough time to get their homework done over the weekend because of "The Sabbath". My response, well I come into work every day on my sabbath. And a joke about my holy day started. This joke has gotten a bit out of control, I have even built up a Wednesday ritual involving when I go to the shop, where I go to eat afterwards, the people I see are even usually the same people week to …

On Vampires and Keys

The Pull List:

Justice League Dark #10 - DC

Also Read:

American Vampire #28 - Vertigo
American Vampire: Lord of Nightmares #1 - Vertigo
Locke & Key: Welcome to Lovecraft #1-#6, Head Games #1-#6, Crown of Shadows #1-#6, Keys to the Kingdom #1-#6, Clockworks #1-#6 - IDW

My pull list for the forth week of each month is usually pretty weak. It is my version of Fast Sunday. (In the Mormon church, one Sunday a month is Fast Sunday, which means you don't eat anything for a few meals. In my head, Wednesday is the sabbath and a small pull list is like fasting.) And last weeks experience of going without any superhero books really did carry over into this weeks reading. I'm not going to spend time with Justice League Dark, if you want to know about the series, check my post from four weeks ago.

When I teach my English 2010 comics class, I am sure to point out to my students (especially those who have no experience with comics) that the medium of comics and graphic novels has so much mor…