September 29, 2020

What’s Old is New

What's old is new

New amazing work of Jeff Lemire, EC Comics new old comics and the SNES Classic. Complete show notes below.

DESCENDER

Descender_Page_67lznz.jpgOne young robot’s struggle to stay alive in a universe where all androids have been outlawed and bounty hunters lurk on every planet. A rip-roaring and heart-felt cosmic odyssey that pits humanity against machine, and world against world, to create a sprawling space opera from the creators of Trillium, Sweet Tooth, and Little Gotham.

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Powerhouse creative team JEFF LEMIRE and DUSTIN NGUYEN launch an all-new sequel series to DESCENDER with the launch of ASCENDER! Set ten years after the conclusion of DESCENDER’s storyline, magic has taken the place of machinery and the rules are very different indeed… Mila, the daughter of Andy and Effie from DESCENDER, spends her days exploring the lonely wilds of the planet Sampson and trying to stay out of the clutches of the evil disciples of the all-powerful vampire witch known only as Mother. But, like her parents, Mila doesn’t like to play by the rules, and when a certain robot pal of her dad’s shows up, nothing will ever be the same! With all the scope and heart of the sci-fi classic DESCENDER, LEMIRE and NGUYEN reunite to take readers on an unforgettable fantasy quest!

Like you I’m sure you can tell when something is good, whether it’s a book, comic book or podcast you can’t stop consuming it. This is one you won’t be able to put down. Like most of Lemires work it’s excellent and addicting.  The whole future dynamic between robots and humans is fascinating to all of us, especially now when AI is getting closer than it ever has been. The art is gritty and fits the story telling. The story starts with Descender and chapter two is Ascender. Also as I have said before I like the story because it has a beginning and ending.If you like the conflict between humans and robots you will love Jeff Lemires Descender/Ascender.

 

This isn’t new, but it’s new to me. EC Comics collection from Dark Horse. When you think Dark Horse might be down for the count they hit back hard, THE EC ARCHIVES

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Entertaining Comics, more commonly known as EC Comics, was an American publisher of comic books, which specialized in horror fiction, crime fiction, satire, military fiction and science fiction from the 1940s through the mid-1950s, notably the Tales from the Crypt series. In 1954–55, censorship pressures prompted EC Comics to concentrate on the humor magazine Mad, leading to the company’s greatest and most enduring success. Initially, EC was privately owned by Maxwell Gaines and specialized in educational and child-oriented stories. Later, during its period of notoriety, it was owned by his son, William Gaines. He sold the company in 1960, and it was eventually absorbed into the Kinney National Company, the same corporation that later purchased DC Comics and Warner Bros.

EC had success with its fresh approach and pioneered in forming relationships with its readers through its letters to the editor and its fan organization, the National EC Fan-Addict Club. EC Comics promoted its stable of illustrators, allowing each to sign his art and encouraging them to develop unique styles; the company additionally published one-page biographies of them in the comic books. This was in contrast to the industry's common practice, in which credits were often missing,Weird_Fantasy_18_-_Page_3575ti6.jpg

They were also known for their shock endings in the stories, like Weird Fantasy #18 (April 1953) The story depicted a human astronaut, a representative of the Galactic Republic, visiting the planet Cybrinia, inhabited by robots. He finds the robots divided into functionally identical orange and blue races, one of which has fewer rights and privileges than the other. The astronaut determines that due to the robots' bigotry, the Galactic Republic should not admit the planet until these problems are resolved. In the final panel, he removes his helmet, revealing himself to be a person of color. Which in 1953 America was shocking. Almost all of their stories had an ending like this.

Adventures_into_the_Unknown_V1_2012_-_Page_12833b0.jpgAnother fun series is Adventure into the unknown. One of the stories simply titled Haunted house might be what a Scooby Doo episode was based on. A couple has to stay overnight in a haunted house in order to get their inheritance from a rich relative. The lawyer in charge of the estate tries to scare them out of the house by making the house appear to be haunted. Classic story and art from 1948. At the time these stories were considered edgy before the comics code of authority. These comics are the reason for the code.

What a great idea! Rather than create new characters and stories why not go back 75 years and retell stories to many who have never seen it.

This concept fits the saying “why recreate the wheel” you have great stories very few today have seen, why not reprint and give a chance for new readers to experience and enjoy an old story.haunted_house9w7i0.jpg

IDW also released a special limited run edition feature the best artists edition, but I believe the Dark Horse reprints are complete and unabridged.

If you have listened to this podcast for any length of time you can tell I’m a bit of a nostalgia nut. Seeing these old comics even though I didn’t live in this time period I still like the vibe I get from reading them. The optimism they project is inspiring, for example the writers had humans traveling in space like we drive to the grocery store. Yes, I will admit some of it is a bit corny but getting a glimpse of what people living in that time period were thinking is fun to consider.

 

Look at least one of these volumes and see what you think. The people who created these comics and stories were the pioneers of the industry that we enjoy today. They were learning as they went along. They created the medium and creators today are perfecting the medium.

This reminds of the SNES classic my kids gave me. To clarify if you don’t know the SNES classic is a small Super NES console with 21 SNES games on it. No carts and they included controls identical to the original 1990 controllers. The games play just like the originals. again, what's old is new again.

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Best of all you can hack it to play even more retro games from the NES to Sega Genesis and more.

Nostalgia is in and in a big way. With all that is going on in the world I believe people like to go back to what they believe in their mind was a simpler time. Whether it was or not is debatable, but if you go back to when you were 10 it was a simpler time. Or at least I hope it was for you. When you are 10 you don’t have to concern yourself with a job, house payments and getting the next promotion. The most you had to worry about is who you are going to hang out with today and what game to play.

Some may knock people who like to talk about and buy things from their childhood. I would say like most things there is a healthy and unhealthy balance that needs to be adhered to. For example, do not put a second mortgage on your house to buy that one-of-a-kind limited-edition Star Wars action figure. The guys over at the MEGA podcast came up with the idea of having a mini collection of MOTU figures. I believe the number to be considered mini was 8-10 figures. I thought this was a good way to not go overboard, but still have a piece of your childhood.

Overall, I don’t think it’s bad to have a few things from your past. You know the feelings and memories that come rushing back when you hold that one thing from your childhood and instantly you are 10 again and you have your whole world to explore. Even if it’s only for a few minutes at least let people enjoy it and let them share their memories with you and the excitement they got to experience. A friend told me his wife didn’t understand why he collected and talked about old MOTU figures. He said because it brings back feelings and memories from a good time in his life and made him feel good to revisit those memories again. She still didn’t understand why. A few months later her birthday came around and he bought her an original bear she had as kid that she mentioned she had lost during a move when she was a kid and wished she had never lost it. When she opened the box she was stunned and started to cry as the memories of the bear came rushing back. He had bought her the exact bear she had lost. And he said this is why I buy those old figures. That story nailed it for me. Maybe you have a similar story. If so you can email me cn@covertnerd.net or go to covertnerd.net to find out how to reach me. I will put a link in the show notes that you can access on whatever device you are using to listen to this podcast.

Let me know about your thoughts on this episode and any ideas you have for future topics I would love to hear what you think.

 

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