Notes from our travels across a mysterious world.

Category: Comics (Page 2 of 6)

World War Hulk

Yes, it has come to this. I have reached the conclusion that Marvel’s last two big events — House of M and Civil War — have actually served their purpose, despite less-than-stellar plotting and shaky characterizations. Their purpose was to get me excited about this summer’s event, World War Hulk, by making me hate the Marvel Universe so much I’ll enjoy seeing Hulk taking his revenge on it.

I also find it interesting that after the eight-issue House of M, and the delays in shipping the seven-issue Civil War, World War Hulk is only set for five issues. C’mon, there’s more smashing to do than that. Hulk Smash Earth-616!!! 🙂

See the trailer.

(I wonder if they’re taking a lesson from DC Comics, where they worked out a lot of their character mistakes by have Superboy punch them?)

Lobo #1

This is one of those things that is unlikely to appear on television vignettes for Black History Month, but it’s interesting nonetheless: Dell Comics published the first comic book series featuring an African-American hero. Lobo had a fairly usual Western backstory, being accused of a murder he didn’t commit, but in 1965 he broke new ground. Unfortunately, due to retailers returning the comic bundles unopened, Lobo only lasted for two issues. They’re hard to find now, but I picked up issue #1 a while back, and I’m still looking for the second one.


Cover image courtesy of

The Phantom Stranger vs. James Bond

Or, Why We Love the Phantom Stranger VI, from the Absorbascon.

Personally, while I think “Bond…James Bond” is one of the greatest lines in movie history, I have to pull for the person who unleashes this quote while pouncing on someone:

You have touched a life and left a blistering sore on the flesh of Humanity — And you must not be allowed to do so again!

(A key difference between hero and villain is the ability to monologue while actually doing something.)

And yes, in the pictures in that article, that is the Phantom Stranger hitting a frost giant in the face with his fist, while blinding it with his cloak.

I really haven’t seen anything like that in a Bond movie, even before the opening credits. On the other hand, I did watch a nice lady bring James his defibrillator once. 😉

Recently, in the Absorbascon…

Why We Love the Phantom Stranger VI

or, The Phantom Stranger versus the TSA


“What is a name? A quick sound lost to the wind; only a man has substance, not his name, and I am just a man. No name can capture who I am — who anyone is — any more than naming a wave can trap it on the sand.”

Metrics of Adulthood

Personally, I like these two signs of being an adult:

  • Your empathy for Peter Parker turns to contempt.
  • Superman starts to impress not because of what he does, but because of what he doesn’t do.

Mysterious Keywords of The Phantom City

When you’re redesigning navigation on a site, one of the important tasks is to assess your most successful outside search keywords — those that keep people around the longest — to see what terminology your visitors use for your content.

For instance, looking at my search stats, I should have a Jackie Manuel section, dedicated to one of the greatest defensive basketball players in UNC history. Why is my site a frequent destination for Jackie Manuel searchers? Because I wrote an article in 2005 about Jackie going to a NBADL team that comes up third in Google’s search for “Jackie Manuel.”

That was the highest I’d seen my site rank in Google for any search terms that weren’t directly related to the words “Phantom City,” up until today. As of this moment, I am now the number one search result for…

…drum roll…

Snoopy vs. Osama

I have to assume they were looking for this. I don’t want to know why.

By the way, Jackie, congratulations. It looks like you’re doing well.

Update: More information on the Royal Guardsmen and their history of singing Snoopy-related songs.

Random stuff from the past

When I run across interesting things to link from my blog, I usually send them to my Gmail account with the best intentions of blogging about them “when I get some time.” Well, that doesn’t happen as often as it should, so I’ll clear out a few items now:

5 Lamest Charlie Brown Cartoons – 10 Zen Monkeys covers the five worst Peanuts animated specials. I can’t agree with the inclusion of Snoopy, Come Home, though. Link courtesy of TV Squad.

The Last Panel – A dedicated fan adds the all-important last panel to some For Better or For Worse comic strips. They finally become funny. Link courtesy of The Comics Curmudgeon.

Wikipedia Brown and the Case of the Captured Koala – Wikipedia creates reality. A take-off on the Encyclopedia Brown books I devoured as a kid. Link courtesy of Too Many Topics, Too Little Time.

Ancient Crash, Epic Wave – Did a comet hit the Earth 4,800 years ago?

PHP Eats Rails for Breakfast – Is tracking new lines of code the best way to compare the relative popularity of two languages? That assumes languages evolve to the same level of code complexity when addressing common problems. Might not be a bad assumption, but it would be nice to see some analysis of it. Link courtesy of O’Reilly Ruby blog.

Empires with Expiration Dates – Niall Ferguson examines the short shelf lives of modern empires. Empires are defined as largely political and military entities, with direct power. The question I have is whether global capitalism encourages indirect power, namely economic and cultural. Link courtesy of Arts & Letters Daily.

Myths of British ancestry – Who were the Celts…and does it matter? Link courtesy of Arts & Letters Daily.

synerG Web Site Design Competition – Deadline December 31, 2006.

An Introduction to’s AppExchange – How to build your own hosted application to sell to users.

Election Day 2006 – Whose Side is your Favorite Superhero on? – Dave’s Long Box predicts how superheroes would vote. The Hulk’s a Libertarian…he just wants to be left alone.

Twitter – There’s no way I’m using this, but I can see it being pretty interesting for a lot of folks. Kitta, for one.

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