Friday, February 27, 2015

2015 Reading Challenge Book 042 Carrie

AUTHOR-Stephen King
FIRST TIME READING-Nope! I can not remember how many times I have read this book.
COST-10 cents

Right after I moved back to Mississippi the local library had it's 4 time a year book sale. They had 4 or 5 copies of Carrie. So instead of the normal 50 cents for a paperback,they were 10 cents. I had left most of my books out in Texas. And had no clue what all I owned. I figured if I bought it and already had a copy out in Texas I was out 10 cents. When I did get my stuff I had left 2 states to the west ,either I had not owned a copy of Carrie or someone had borrowed mine.

I feel like everyone reading this knows the story. They have either seen one if not all of the three film adaptations. I have only seen the original film and the made for TV remake.The original film is a decent adaptation of the novel. The main parts that are missing are medical reports that would have been hard to translate to the screen.

As for the novel. I choose to read it this time because I couldn't sleep. I thought reading something I have read many many times before would distract my brain long enough for me to get some much needed sleep. That didn't happen and in a little under 3 1/2 hours I read the entire book.

Hmmm.. what more can I say. I like this cover more than any other US printings cover. I wonder how many people before me owned and read this copy. I don't like Carrie enough to want to own it in hardcover.So this cheap kind of beat up paperback copy will do well.

Carrie gets a 2.85 outta 5.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

2015 Reading Challenge Book 041 America's Best Comics trade paperback

TITLE-Alan Moore's America's Best Comics
AUTHOR-Various writers plots assists by Alan Moore
FORMAT-Trade Paperback

Besides a Promethea cover collection,which I got cause it was extremely cheap and got me to the free shipping limit on the site,this is the only other things I have read from  the DC's ABC comic line.I was at my regular con. And a dealer had a spinner rack packed with overstock trades. They were $5 a piece or 3 for 10.I dropped around 90 bucks and he ended up letting me get 30 trades instead of 27.
The trade is a sampler of the America's Best Comics line.Reprinted is the ABC 64-Page Giant,The Many Worlds of Tesla Strong and the ABC Sketchbook.

The 64-page giant reminds me of the last year or so of DC's Adventure Comics. When it became a digest that was stuffed with reprints of a strange bag of heroes. I am assuming this comic was meant to be a jumping on point for new readers. The Promethea 30's style comic strip has nice artwork and is fairly well written.The handful of Jack B Quick one pagers is a nice homage to Golden age comics. With a very Tom Swiftian boy genius.The Top Ten story was decent,but I was expecting a lot more. I guess it was cause I had heard so much praise for Top 10.I am a huge Sergio Aragonnes fan and of course enjoyed his First American story.The best for art and story from this issue is the Splash Brannigan story written by Alan Moore. With Kylie Baker artwork.

The Tesla Strong story has so many artist working on it. With each of them doing a few pages. After having so many 4 or so page stories getting a nice long story was a refreshing change. All of the art is well done. The Peter Hogan and Alan Moore story is so good that I added every appearance of Tesla Strong to my want list.

The sketchbook has some interesting art. But it just made me want to read more stories with Splash Brannigan and/or The Greyshirt. The Greyshirt is a very Shadow like vigilante. And Splash has the powers of Spiderman's foe Hydroman,and the personality of the Golden Age Plastic Man.

To me the 64-page giant is worth the $3.33 I paid for this issue. Then you got the really really really good Tesla Strong story.And almost added bonus of a decent sketchbook.I need to find more comics from the defunct line soon.

Alan Moore's America's Best Comics Trade Paperback gets a 4.45 outta 5.

Monday, February 23, 2015

How come no one told me about these 001

Earlier this month I made a visit to Vendor's Emporium.While there I found 3 toys. 2 from the Frantics line and 1 from the Weird-ohs.

I know of the Weird-ohs cause of a documentary I watched on Big Daddy Roth last year. Pretty sure it was in the Weird-ohs model kits that Rat Fink first appeared. The Frantics I have never heard of.

But onto the toys.

  Each figure comes in a sealed clamshell like packaging. Above is the male Frantic Cat.I did some looking and these sold for $7 originally. Not a bad price for what you get. Now let see what is in the package.

Each figure comes with a pack of 5 trading cards. The two things to the right are pieces of cardboard that were in the packaging as decoration.

While opening the pack of cards I noticed how the wrapper didn't feel right. It looks just like the old wax packs baseball cards came in. But it is made of a different type of paper.As you can see in the picture one of the two pictured cards has the male Frantic Cat figure on it. The other card has what I assume is the Frantics drummer.

 And here is the other three cards.The first card has the other Frantic figure I own on it. After opening the other Frantic figure I learned there is only 5 trading cards total in the base set. There is randomly inserted chase cards. I didn't get any. The art on these cards looks like Jack Davis,of Mad Magazine fame,and Big Daddy Roth worked on them.

 And here is the figure. I wondered when looking at him in the packaging how he would be able to stand up. Turns out there is magnets in his feet and the base is metal.So getting him to stand up is easy.

To me in the face he looks a lot like Buddy Bradley from Hate.The paint job is well done. The sculpting is pretty good. Overall a decent figure and with the cards is worth the $2.50 I paid.

 Here is my other Frantic figure,Totally Fab.
Again it comes with a pack of 5 cards. Here is the pack along with the cardboard pieces from the packaging.

And the same five cards that came with the Frantic Cat figure.Might make this extra set into magnets or buttons.
Here is Totally Fab along with his base. I like the two records,which I figure are 45s,on the base.Thankfully they put magnets in his feet. Without them getting him to stand wouldn't be easy. I now want to find the other 3 Frantics from this series so I can have a complete set.  At least I assume there is only 3 more. The backing board in  the packages shows 5 total figures. But on the front Totally Fab is listed as #25. But I don' t know if that means there are 25 figures in the Frantics or 25 figures total in all of the lines of toys in this lineup. Also on the back it says there is 66 total Frantics cards. I could do some googling to find out.But I am being lazy.

Then there is the one Weird-Ohs figure I found.
Drag Hag is part of the Weird-Ohs. Pretty sure this is all connected to Rat Fink.The backing card says there is 130 cards total. So now I am really confused.

The little purple guy on the wrapper is Wade A Minut. He is another of the Weird-Ohs figures.
4 of the 5 cards in the pack have Drag Hag on them. And unlike the Frantics cards these are all high numbers. With the highest number being 56. The two cards pictured above have Drag Hag ,with a baby in her car.The one on the top is about her and the kid.The bottom one has her and the kid at a laundry mat.
The top left card has Drag Hag and her daughter again. The bottom left card is of Sarge Barge.Who isn't one of the figures pictured on the back of the packaging.Remember when I said there is random inserted chase cards. I spoke wrong when I said I didn't get one. The top right card is labeled as a "Treasure Hunt" on the back. And it has Drag Hag out grocery shopping.
And here is Drag Hag.Her arms are a bit moveable. And like the other two figures the paint job and sculpting are well done.
Here is Drag Hag with her Weird-Ohs skateboard. She attaches to the board with magnets. The board is made just like those finger skateboards that were popular years back.

I am always on the lookout for smaller figures with a unusual look to them. All three of these meet that criteria. Doing a quick google search it seems like these didn't sell well. And I am wondering where the owner of the booth I bought them from got them.If I could find more at say $3 or less I would buy them.

Well I hope yall enjoyed this.I had planned on posting it weeks ago. Then had my computer issues and it hit the back burner.But if you are reading this and have some Weird-Ohs or Frantics you want to sell let me know.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

2015 Reading Challenge Book 040 The Greatest Team Up Stories Ever Told

TITLE-The Greatest Team-Up Stories Ever Told

I have always like DC comics The Greatest FILL IN THE BLANK series of trades and hardcovers. Back when the first Burton Batman film came out I got the Batman and Joker trades from this line. And read each of them so many times they fell apart.

Back in 2008 I had a lot more disposable income. Was on Ebay looking for decently priced comic trades and hardcovers.I saw this collection. With the great artwork on the dust jacket catching my eye.I looked it up and scoped out what stories are reprinted in this collection. They looked to be a nice selection of both stuff I had read and hadn't read.It had 3 days to go in the auction.So I put in  a bid of $8,which was 25 cents more than the current highest bid. By the time I won the auction I had kind of forgot about bidding on it.

It came in and I filled up my glass with some cold sweet tea.Went out on my back porch. Spent the next 2 hours reading some really fun Golden age and Silver age stories with various DC heroes teaming up.

Oh yeah the stories.There are 15 stories total. 5 Golden age stories,with 3 of them teaming up Superman and some combination of Batman and/or Robin. These are decent. But nothing about them stands out that much.The other two stories team up Aquaman with Green Arrow and Speedy.These two are really fun. I like how Green Arrow has to change up his techniques because of him being underwater.And the Aquaman part of the story has beautiful Ramona Fredon artwork.

There are 6 Silver age stories. And there is much more variety in what heroes team up in these stories.Of course the classic team up stories of the 60s,Flash of Two World,Crisis on Earth-One and Crisis on Earth-two.The Hawkman/Adam Strange team up is a story I had never read or heard of.But after reading it I would rank it with the stories I mentioned a few sentences back.Gardner Fox is the author,with Carmine Infantino and Murphy Anderson doing the pencils.Mr Anderson pulls double duty by also doing the inks.The Atom/Flash team up....well it isn't anything special. The Alex Toth art is nice.But I have never been a big fan of Bob Haney's storytelling skills.Then the final story from the Silver age,another classic. From The Brave and the Bold #54 it is first appearance of the original Teen Titans.I had a reprint of this teaming of Robin,Kid Flash and Aqualad. But the reproduction of the artwork was really bad. Here it looks better than it ever has.I love the Bruno Premiani pencils. And the only drawback is the by the numbers Bob Haney story.

Finally we get 4 Bronze age/Modern age stories.Before getting this collection I had read 2 of them. The first is O'Neal & Adams Green Lantern #76 from Spring 1970. What can be said about this comic? Really it has been discussed indepth for over 40 years now. All I can say is that I do enjoy it,but feel that it feels a bit dated. Which isn't really a bad thing,the story is 44 years old. The next story is one I have never read.It is the story about how if Krypton hadn't explodes Kal-El would have been the greatest Green Lantern of all time. I have never been a Superman fan. There is at the most 10 or so Superman stories I even enjoy. This is not one of them.We jump ahead to the very early 80s. From Brave and the Bold #178,the Jim Aparo drawn team up of the Creeper and Batman. Kind of surprised I had not read this issue before getting this collection. From the very late 70s until the series ended I rarely missed an issue of Brave and the Bold. This was the title that not only made me a Batman fan,but also introduced me to so many DC heroes and villains.And when Jim Aparo was drawing it I tried my best to never miss an issue.I loved this issue so much. The Creeper is a low enough level super powered hero that he works very well with Batman.And finally not only the last issue in this great hardcover,but the best issue in it. As I said above I am not a Superman fan. But DC Comics Presents #85 is one of those 10 or so Superman stories I enjoy. The first time I read it was not long after it came out in the fall of 85.My cousin had bought the comic. We were 11 or 12,and had found out the local library had a comic book trade. He had bought the issue of DC comics presents cause he was a big Superman fan. And he did not like it. He hated it.Before we got into his mothers car to go trade comics he asked me if I might want it.I looked at it and saw Superman was teaming up with Swamp Thing. At the comic trade that summer I had gotten a few issues from the 70s Swamp Thing run.So I agreed to trade him one of my Gi Joe comics for the issue. It got buried in the pile of comics I got that day. And at least a week went by before I read it. Holy Hell what a great story. Wait I am just assuming people reading this know who wrote it and did the pencils. Alan Moore wrote the comic.Rick Veitch did the pencils. So you got the at the time current creative team on one of the best comics of the 80s. OK enough gushing. This is one of my favorite comics. And one I think every comic fan should read.

Lets see. This is a well made hardcover. Out of the 15 stories 9 of them are great. The other 6 suffer from either being very dated or starring heroes I have little interest in. But even the stories I have no interest in the artwork is reproducted so well.

The Greatest Team-Up Stories Ever Told gets a 4.05 outta 5.

Bargain Store finds from early Feb 2015

This is another article I had half written when my main laptop shit the bed. I am still working on getting it working properly. But have managed to get all my stuff off of it. So here is a post that should have hit 20 days ago. Hope y'all enjoy.

Most months the first week of it I spend a few hours hitting all the bargain stores in my town. We have 5 Dollar Generals,a Family Dollar,Dollar Tree and Dirt Cheap. Been thinking about doing a post each month on the stuff I find. Cause everyone always tells me they love hearing about my finds. So this is the first of what I hope to be a monthly feature here.

Now for those that don't know,Dollar Tree is a nationwide chain. Where everything is a buck or cheaper. I mostly use it to buy super glue,AAA batteries for my remotes and other small gadgets and for cheap greeting cards. I hate how much a greeting card cost. So Dollar Tree having them for 50 cents is great. But onto what I bought.
 I was checking the toy aisle when I found this keychain TMNT Leonardo item. They had all four Turtles. And over the past 6 months I have gotten back into the TMNT franchise. Each of these keychains came with a pog and has something in the base that you use a smartphone with. Something about being able to fight your turtle online against others. I don't own or want a smartphone. But a well detailed Leo "statue" for a buck was worth it.

 I assume they made 2 figures for each Turtle.Because after seeing mine a friend went and got a Raphel one. But her's looks different from mine. I had planned on adding these to the dash of my car. But didn't right now they are on top of one of my many shelves.Kind of wondering how many people put these on their keychains. They are so big they wouldn't fit in most pants pockets.

But besides a soda and a bag of chips all I bought from Dollar Tree was the turtles. Dollar Tree is very hit or miss. This time it wasn't a hit or a miss.


I love Dollar General. I got one pretty close to my home. And almost everyday I stop there to grab a drink.I love how DG has lots of used DVDs cheap. But my favorite thing to look for at DG is books. Every DG I have been in has at least one spinner rack of cheap paperbacks.

Well I was in town and ran by a Dollar General I rarely go into. Mostly cause it is in a part of town I kind of avoid. I had been asked to go grab some sodas and since I was in DG I had to check the spinner rack of cheap paperbacks.

 After the Golden Age book review

I had never heard of this book or the author. The artwork on the cover caught my eye. I read the synopsis on the back and it sounded good. Plus it was only $2. My only small complaint about DG and their books is you never know what the price will be. Sometimes it is $3,sometimes it is $2 and sometimes it is $1. You don't know until the find the price sticker DG adds to the cover. Speaking of those stickers,I wish more stores used them. I have never had an issue removing that sticker. It never damages the cover. But if you don't feel like reading my review I will sum it up. If you like superheroes give this book a try,

Got this newer printing of Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter for $2. What is strange is the sticker on the front said 3.But it rung up as 2. I haven't seen the film ,but have seen the Asylum ripoff Lincoln VS Zombies. Heard the book is good. Had been wanting to read it. So grabbed this cause of it being cheap.


I might hit Family Dollar maybe 5 times a year. It is rare they have any toys I want. Their DVDs are placed in a high traffic area,which makes it hard to dig through them to see what they got. And if they do get in books,it is mostly romance novels.I was with a friend who was telling me how Family Dollar has cheap and nice curtains. Plus they had their women's clothing on sale. While she looked at clothes I went to dig through the DVDs.

Yep the original release of the first TMNT film on DVD. I love this movie. And have been meaning to pick it up for years now. But never saw it for under 10 bucks. It was $3. I have been seeing a Blu Ray pack that has the first 3 live action TMNT films. I don't like the 2nd film and have never seen the 3rd. So thought grabbing the first film for $3 was a great deal. I was wrong. Later that night I threw in the DVD. Had popped some popcorn and was ready to enjoy a film I haven't seen in close to 20 years. Well guess what the DVD looks like total ass. To my eyes it looks like they took a well worn ex-rental VHS and made a capture of that.Way too much grain. The picture's contrast is way too high. I feel ripped off. Guess I am gonna buy that Blu Ray set soon.
The Super 6 was a Saturday Morning cartoon made by the Depatie-Freleng studios. Most people will know this animation studio from their many Pink Panther cartoons. This show aired from 1966 to 1969 on NBC. And was rerun in syndication for decades. I never saw it,but had heard about it. The Super 6 are a bunch of superheroes that all work for an agency. If someone needs a hero they call in and the cranky dispatcher sends out a hero that can handle the situation. Each episode has 3 cartoons. Our main heroes are.
Super Bwoing-He is extremely clumsy. And is the last hero the agency wants to send out. He flies through the air on his guitar. And reminds me a bit of Van Hallen from that superhero spoof cartoon that aired as part of Dextor's Lab.
Granite Man-A living statue who's sidekick is a pigeon who lives on him.
Magneto Man-A British hero who has the power of magnetism.
Elevator Man-Who can grow or shrink in size.He is the Super 6's detective and the most serious hero on the roster.
Super SCUBA-A water based hero. Who has a mermaid sidekick
Captain Whammo/Zammo-He started off as Whammo,but only used that name for 1 or 2 episodes.Before it was changed to Zammo. Maybe the Whammo company threatened a lawsuit. He is the Super 6's Superman like hero.
This set is 2 DVDs and contains every episode. It was $5 but worth that much to me. After finding it I am now seeing it pop up in the Walmart $5 bin. If you like superheroes and don't mind comedic versions of them grab this set.

And time for the final store.
I mention Dirt Cheap fairly often. Because I go there all the time.Recently my lady,I and some friends made a trip to Hattisburg MS. And what was our first stop? Dirt Cheap Treasure Hunt,which is a more upscale version of the normal Dirt Cheap store. If you haven't heard of Dirt Cheap it is a close out store like Biglots. But where as Biglots is organized,clean and smells good. Dirt Cheap is messy,kind of dirty and smells bad. Plus Dirt Cheap carries lots of clothing. Where as I have never seen much clothes in Biglots.

Let me mention two items I didn't get. I always look through the shirts at Dirt Cheap. Months back I got a great TMNT shirt for $3. I was looking through the shirts when I found a nice Johnny Cash one. It had a good picture of cash on the front and that was it. I loved the design of it  and it was in my size. But it didn't have a price sticker on it. So I grabbed it knowing that once I checked out they would call a manager over to figure out a price.

I also found a hat that said "100% weird" on the front. With me cutting my hair soon,I plan on starting to wear hats more often. My girl is always jokingly saying how weird I am. So I figured a hat that says that would make her laugh. After picking it up I noticed a weird stain on the inside. I looked closed and some kind of white substance was all over inside the hat. Not knowing what it was I wasn't going to buy  the hat.

While waiting on the others that had come shopping with me I walked up and down all the aisles. In the toy aisle I found some of those Imaginext blind buy bags. I like the concept of these blind buy bags. The figures that come in them are well made. But at normal stores they cost 3 or 4 bucks each. Which is more than I will pay not knowing what I am getting. But at Dirt Cheap this was 50 cents.
I am sure if I looked it up I could find out this alien's name. Because his brain is exposed I just named him Brain dude.His shoulders are the ball and socket joints. His hands spin. And his legs are articulated at the hips. Plus the staff can be removes from his hand. Along with his cape being removable. Like the TMNT statues I planned on adding Brain Dude to my ever growing collection of stuff glued to the dash of my car. But I actually got an idea for a new project and Brain Dude is gonna be used for that.

After looking at all the toys,and finding lots of Lego sets I would have bought it they were not opened and most likely missing pieces,I went over to see what electronics they had. The smaller electronics they keep behind a counter or in glass display cases. I saw nothing I liked. But behind the counter on the floor I saw what I was sure was a headset with built in mic. I got one of Dirt Cheap's staff to come get it for me. It is a 100 buck computer headset with mic. According to reviews I have read online this is one of the best headsets on the market. The sticker on the package said $100. But as with everything at Dirt Cheap they discount it a certain amount.I asked the staff helping me if they had any idea how much of a discount it had. "No idea sir but everything over here is at least 70% off" I thought about it. 70% off would make it 30 bucks. My last headset mic was 30 bucks and not as nice as this one. So I grabbed it.

Made my way to the checkout area.And  the people that had rode with me were also ready to check out. They had grabbed lots of 90% off Halloween and X-mas decorations. Plus one of them had found some really nice boots. Normally $120 at Dirt Cheap they were $30.

The cashier rang up the Imaginext toy.Then asked me if they had anymore. Seems her son loves the Imaginext stuff and collects them. I offered to not buy this one so her son could have it. But she told me that wasn't needed. When she saw the Johnny Cash shirt had no price and the Headset didn't have the discount percentage listed on it she called the manager. The manager came over."So no DVDs this time sir?" She has gotten to know me and is use to me buying a bunch of DVDs each time I come to the store. I told her how I had already gotten 2 DVDs that day. She then looked at the headset,looked at me and said "Does $15 sound fair to you?" Of course I said yes. "Well with t-shirts if it doesn't have a price it is $10." I told her for that price I didn't want the shirt. I had seen a similar one at Walmart for $7.

Well I hope yall enjoyed my trips to these bargain stores. I believe people do not realize what kinds of deals they can find if they are willing to spend a little time looking.

2015 Reading Challenge Book 039 Booker T From Prison to Promise

TITLE-Booker T From Prison to Promise
AUTHOR-Booker T Huffman & Andrew William Wright
Caught this on sale a year or so back.But it has sat on a flash drive forgotten until last week.I was looking for something to read digitally.

I first saw Booker T wrestle when Harlem Heat showed up on the various WCW syndicated shows. Over the years I have tracked down a decent amount of his matches from Global. And had heard about his stint in prison. I even got to meet Booker T back in the early 2000s.We had went to a PPV in Houston. Ended up hanging around after the show and saw Booker T heading to his car. He was really nice. Signing stuff and thanking us for coming to the show.  It sucks I lost my autograph in a move.

Booker starts the novel with his birth and goes pretty much chronologically through his life.He ended up losing both his parents when he was very young. Got abandoned by the older brothers and sisters that had said they would help raise him and his little sister. Then ended up living in their parents house with no power,water,heat and very little food. Thankfully Booker got sorta of adopted by a family.

He was doing pretty good. But ended up as part of  a group that was robbing Wendy's fast food places all over the Houston area. They get caught and Booker is set to prison. He gets out on good behaviour after a bit over a year. After some minor stumbles,Booker ends up working for a storage rental place. Where through complete chance,his boss is a huge wrestling fan. This man ends up giving Booker the $1000 he needs to start at Ivan Putski's wrestling school.

So we got Booker and his brother,the future Stevie Ray,being trained by Ivan Putski and Scott Casey.With Casey really doing most of the training.Booker tells lots of funny stories about his run ins with older vets during this time. The story about Killer Tim Brooks was the best.

Then once again a chance meeting with someone gets Booker a shot in the Global Wrestling Fed.Back then Global had a show on ESPN. So while they only ran a tiny area,they had nationwide TV.Booker and Stevie Ray become a tag team. That according to Booker gets lots of racist catcalls during their early matches. But they quickly got the crowd behind them.Everything is going good.When Booker and Stevie get a call from Sid Vicious. He wants to bring them in WCW. Of course they want to go. And the book ends with them speeding off out of the Sportatorium parking lot on their way to Atlanta.

Going into this book I was most interested in reading about Booker's days on the various Texas indies. And what he had done to get sent to prison.So with the book just covering that era I was entertained. I would have liked to hear some about his early years in WCW. Booker does hint that there is going to be a second book. I really hope it happens.

Booker T From Prison to Promise gets a 3.95 outta 5

Friday, February 20, 2015

2015 Reading Challenge Book 038 The Boys Volume 1 The Name of the Game

TITLE-The Boys volume 1 The name of the game
AUTHOR-Garth Ennis
FORMAT-Trade  Paperback

Back around X-mas of 2008 my mother was asking me what I wanted for X-mas. Since I had no local comic shop I was craving comics.So she threw me her credit card and told me to place an order for $60 worth of comics.

I had heard of the Boys before then. And already being a big fan of Garth Ennis I had been wanting to read it. The series started off being published by DC under their Wildstorm imprint. But after the 6th issue DC canceled it. I have never heard why. I doubt it was cause of low sales.Maybe DC thought having a series that takes the piss out of superhero comics isn't a great idea when 80% of your comics are superhero stuff. Not long after being canceled Dynamite Entertainment picked up the series. Now I am glad a company picked it up. But I hate how Dynamite's comics always cost at least a buck more than comics from other companies. This trade reprints the first 6 issues and has a cover price of 17 bucks. Which to me is high for just 6 issues.

The Boys is set in a world where superheroes exist. And in this trade we find out why superheroes exist. A Nazi scientist created a compound that when given to someone causes them to develop superheroes. This compound is highly guarded and for good reasons. We start off over in the UK.Where Hughie is at a carnival with his girlfriend. They are having a great time when out of nowhere a super speed powered hero who is chasing a villain runs over Hughie's girl and kills her. This devastates Hughie. Since this superhero works for the US government Hughie gets offered a payoff. But that isn't what he wants.He wants revenge.

Some time later he meets up Billy Butcher. A former solider who know heads up a black ops superhero team. Who are known as the Boys. They police the superhero community.He offers Hughie a chance to get his revenge on the hero that killed his girl.

These six issues mostly deal with Hughie learning to cope with the death of his girl and,after getting shot up with the super power giving compound,learning how to deal with his new found powers.The issues also cover the first big assignment Hughie gets after joining the boys. Where they are sent out to make a point with this universes version of the New teen titans. Who are all boozing,drug addicted sex maniacs. Hughie accidentally kills one of these teen heroes. And a hamster crawls out of the dead "hero"'s anus. Like with every long running series Ennis has written,lots of minor things in this first collection are the start of major storylines later one. Like how right after moving to NYC Hughie meets a pretty young lady in the park and starts up a relationship with her. She is actually the newest member of this universe's version of the JLA or the Avengers. Or the aforementioned Hamster. Later on the dead hero shows back up looking for his "pet". Which Hughie has adopted.

A word of warning,like most stuff from Garth Ennis this book is packed with lots of foul language.violence and other not kid friendly elements. But if you do not mind that kinds of stuff and want a good and funny read give The Boys a shot.

The Boys Volume 1 The Name of the Game gets a 3.35 outta 5

2015 Reading Challenge Book 037 Ghoul by Brian Keene

AUTHOR-Brian Keene

I discovered Brian Keene back in 2008. While shopping at a used bookstore I was needing 2 more books to get a nice discount. I had heard of Mr Keene before that day. And saw his novels were being published by Leisure Fiction.So I grabbed this book and another one from Mr Keene.

Set back in the early 80s during the summer,Ghoul is about 3 pre-teen boys. All three of them are fans of horror movies and comic books. They have been building an underground clubhouse out near the local graveyard.One of the boy's father is the groundskeeper of the graveyard. He is also a boozing abusive piece of shit. His son always wonder's where his dad keeps getting various pieces of jewelry. And late one night the son finds out where these ill gotten treasures come from.

There is a ghoul who lives under the cemetery. Since the drunken father is helping provide the ghoul with bodies to eat,the ghoul gives the piece of shit father rings,watches,necklaces and earrings he has found in the graves.

After the boys learn of the ghoul they start trying to figure out how to kill it. Of course the boys triumph over the undead beast. After this we fast forward about 15 years. The lead boy is a grown man and he comes back to the town. The groundskeeper's son is now in charge of the graveyard. We get to meet his son. And find out the cycle of abuse is continuing.

Pretty sure this is the first Keene novel I read. While reading it I kept thinking about Stephen King's book It. Now this book isn't as good as It. But it is a decent read. One drawback is it suffers from something that at least half the Keene novels I have read suffer from,in that it has a shitty ending. Keene keeps building to this great final fight between the boys and the Ghoul. When the ghoul is defeated it feels tacked on. Like Keene had no idea how to kill the ghoul. Then the epilogue is so paint by numbers that it hurts a pretty decent book.

Since I read this book the first time a movie came out based on the novel. It premiered on Chiller. And wasn't that bad. It stars the two young male teens from Modern Family. My main complaint was how shitty the Ghoul looked. And a badly tacked on explanation of the creature.

Ghoul by Brian Keene gets a 2.55 outta 5.

2015 Reading Challenge Book 036 Death of WCW original edition

TITLE-Death of WCW
AUTHOR-R.D. Reynolds & Bryan Alvarez
FORMAT-Over sized trade paperback

I first discovered the Wrestlecrap website about 3 weeks after it started. Yeah I was reading it back when it was R.D. and Merle writing the entries. And for many years every Friday when I got home first thing I would do is go read the new entries. So sometime in 2008 I ordered this book and the Wrestlecrap Book of Lists from Amazon.

As I said in the last paragraph R.D. is the owner of the Wrestlecrap website.And the other author is the lead writer of the Figure Four Weekly newsletter. Bryan Alvarez is a retired pro wrestler. Who  now works with the infamous Dave Meltzer on the Wrestling Observer newsletter,radio show and website.So this book has a nice mixture of wrestling insider knowledge combined with a fan's perspective.

The book covers the entire length of the existence of World Championship Wrestling.WCW started when Ted Turner bought up the old Jim Crockett Promotions. And ended in 2001 when Time Warner got tired of WCW losing piles of money. They cancelled the two WCW TV shows and a piece of wrestling history ended.

The book details all the stupid decisions the various people in charge of WCW made. Like how they paid the wrestler formerly known as Nails for over 3 years,when he only ever had one match in WCW. Or how WCW paid the band Kiss a huge amount of money to get them to perform at an episode of WCW Nitro. As part of this contract with Kiss,WCW created a wrestler based around the Kiss Demon. But in the late 90s WCW had a habit of paying various celebrities way too much money to wrestle. Like Dennis Rodman,who on one PPV showed up so messed up it looked like he passed out while waiting to be tagged into the match. Or the time WCW paid Jay Leno a huge amount of money. For him to do a tag team match at the annual Hog Wild/Road Wild PPV. A PPV that is held at the annual Black Hills Biker rally. A show that was free to see live. So not only did WCW drop huge money on Jay Leno,but it was also at a show where they made no money off the gate.

Now I have heard lots of criticism about this book. With one wrestling forum seeming to have an abnormal amount of hate for this book. Sure there are parts of the book where R.D. and Bryan make mistakes. But from reading posts about the book,you would think 90% of the book is wrong.

I do enjoy this book. Having had read this book at least 5 times. Just recently a 10th anniversary edition was released. I got a copy and read it. Nothing of importance was added to it. And to me it feels like a cash grab by R.D. & Bryan. The one thing that they added that stood out was an epilogue about TNA wrestling. And really this wasn't needed. No matter what lots of fans seem to think TNA has nothing to do with WCW. And really neither fed have much in common. Just because both are/were badly run doesn't mean they are the same.

Death of WCW gets a 3.15 outta 5.

2015 Reading Challenge Book 035 Horror Films

TITLE-Horror Films
AUTHOR-Rhoda Nottridge
COST-10 cents

Back when I started school at Orange Lake Elementary,RIP,my second day there I finished my school work really fast. So my teacher gave me a pass to goto the library and get some books.I found 5 books about horror movies. They had orange covers and were published by Crestwood House. During my 6 years at the school I must have checked out each of these books 10 times. I had forgotten about this great series of non-fiction horror books for kids. Then at a horror movie forum someone mentioned them. So since then anytime I am book hunting I look for copies. And until earlier in February this year I had never found one. I had thought the series ended in the 80s. But the copyright date on the one I found was 92.

It was the cover that caught my attention. I like how Freddy looks a bit sad on it. When I picked it up and saw it was from Crestwood House I knew I had to own it. This book is only 32 pages. Which isn't a big deal. Each chapter is 2 or 3 pages long. And each one sticks to a genre of horror. Like say Vampires,Werewolves,Frankenstein's Monster or zombies.Each chapter also has lots of great full color pictures.

What did surprise me is on the second page of the book they have a very gory picture from the original Hellraiser. With Kirsty facing off against her uncle. Who has no skin on his body. Kind of a bit graphic for a kids book. The Crestwood House books I read in school only covered up to the early 70s. Which is before the trend towards more explicit gore started. Of all the 80s films the Nightmare on Elm Street series is the only one to get an entire chapter about it. This might be why Freddy is on the cover.

After the final chapter,which is titled Is horror dead?,proving to me that horror fans have been saying the genre is dead since before I was born.We get a glossary.Then a list of books that have a similar theme.Then a short 2 page index.

I understand I am not the target audience for this book. And I did enjoy reading it. The main reasons I bought the book and have kept it are.

1.The cover,I love the color tone of the cover. And as I mentioned how Freddy looks a bit sad.
2.Since I was 6 I have wanted to own one of the Crestwood House horror books.
3.Seeing a kid's book full of pretty gory pictures is something you don't see often. And a fairly well respected company putting out a book like this marketed to kids appeals to me.

Horror Films by Rhoda Nottridge gets a 2.50 outta 5.

2015 Reading Challenge Book 034 Obsessed with Marvel

TITLE-Obessessed with Marvel

When I was a kid one of my favorite toys was Quiz Whizz.It looked like an oversized checkbook. You plugged carts into it. And answered multiple choice trivia questions. With the Quiz Whiz keeping track of your score.

Back last winter I was in my local Dollar Tree. And found this book in there. As you can see in the picture the bottom right hand corner has buttons and a LCD screen.

 I sat down about 5 weeks ago,planning on answering every question in the book. The questions cover the Marvel comics,cartoons and movies. It took me a bit over a month but I managed to answer every question. With me getting close to 80% of them right.

Not long after I got the book I was taking a short vacation to Biloxi MS. I brought the book with me. When I goto Biloxi I stay with my cousin and her family.Both her boys are huge into the various superhero movies. And the oldest one is getting into comics. So we played this book. With my cousin teaming up with both her boys and her husband. Even though it was 4 against 1 I still tripled their score. What can  I say my head is full of semi-worthless comic book trivia.

I have no idea what this book's normal price is. But if you find it for 10 bucks or under it is worth picking up.

Obessessed with Marvel gets a 4.05  outta 5.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

2015 Reading Challenge Book 033 Old Flames by Jack Ketchum

TITLE-Old Flames
AUTHOR-Jack Ketchum
FORMAT-Paperback from Leisure Fiction

Pretty sure this was the 5th Ketchum novel I read. Again I found it at the shitty mall book store. Which is 60% Hallmark cards. And then the  books they do have are all cover price. So when I found this on the long discount table at the front I was damn excited. But after reading it my excitement had dimmed some.

What the novel actually is ,is two novellas. The first one is titled Old Flames. A late 30s woman keeps on thinking about an old boyfriend. Then she sees an advert for Flame Finders. A P.I. that specializes in finding old flames. She tracks down this ex. Finds out he is happily married. And proceeds to destroy his life.When I finished this novella I thought "Fuck this reads like a slight more violent than normal novelization of a Lifetime original movie." About a year later I was listening to a podcast with Mr Ketchum. Where he talked about how Old Flames started off as a script for a made for TV movie. When it didn't sell,which I figure is because first off it isn't that good.Plus it is way more violent than most Lifetime original movies are.He turned the screenplay into a novella.

So after being majorly disappointed in Old Flames I was hoping "Right to Life" would be better. And it was. Right to life is about a woman that is going to have an abortion. She gets kidnapped from in front of the abortion clinic. By a supporter of the Pro-life movement. Who then keeps her chained up in his basement. The plan is him and his wife can't have kids. So they are gonna keep her chained up until she has the kid. Then kill her and raise the kid themselves. Thinking that because she was gonna have an abortion that makes her evil. And they are not doing anything wrong,since their religion tells them that abortion is a horrible sin. Over the course of this fairly short novella,we get to see how mentally unstable the wife and husband are. And we get the normal Ketchum ultra violence. Right to life more than makes up for how bad Old Flames is.

I am tempted to give each novella a separate rating. But I won't. If it wasn't for Right to Life in this book I would have traded it in years ago.

Old Flames gets a 3.55 outta 5. And 3 of that 3.55 is because of Right to Life.

2015 Reading Challenge Book 032 She Wakes by Jack Ketchum

TITLE-She Wakes
AUTHOR-Jack Ketchum

This was the third novel I read from Mr Ketchum.I was wanting to read more Ketchum and with this being his only novel with supernatural elements I grabbed it while in the shitty ass bookstore in the nearby mall.

Set in modern day Greece. This is the story of some Americans over there. And how one of the guys runs into a gorgeous woman. Who we learn over the course of the novel might be the reincarnated version of an ancient Greek Goddess.

Normally when I read a new to me Ketchum novel I am expecting good writing and lots of gore and graphic violence. Plus plenty of shocking moments. Well She Wakes has violence and gore, But nothing shocking at all. The first time I read the book I kept putting it down cause I was bored with it.Before reading this book and after every other Ketchum book I have read I usually read in 2 or 3 days. This one took me over a week to read. And back then I was working a job where I had at least 8 hours each shift where I would read. On my second reading of the novel it took me almost 3 weeks to read this. I would read a chapter,think "Fuck this book isn't that good." then put it down and not pick it back up for a few days, As normal I give each book 2 chances. After the second chance if I am still not enjoying the book I sell/give away/trade in the book. I am tempted to do that with She Wakes.

She Wakes by Jack Ketchum gets a 1.25 outta 5.

2015 Reading Challenge Book 031 My Life in Wrestling by Playboy Gary Hart

TITLE-My life in wrestling
AUTHOR-Playboy Gary Hart

Ok first thing this book is out of print and selling for around $400 as of this writing. The co-author refuses to allow it to go back into print or releasing an e book version. Even after seeing how much demand there is for the book. When it first came out I was having money issues so didn't buy a copy. Figuring I could just wait a year or so and grab a used copy. Then about 3 weeks ago a e book version of the first draft of the book leaked out. Since I can not afford to pay $400 for a book I got the e book file.After reading it I am even more mad that it looks like this book will never go back into print.

I got to see lots of Gary Hart when he was in WCCW. And knew about his runs in JCP. But had no idea he had worked all over the world. With stints in Australia and Canada.

The book starts out with a young Hart discovering wrestling. Then he ends up getting involved with the Chicago mafia. He manages to get out of the area before anything majorly bad happens to him. I love how candid Gary is about this part of his life.

From there we get a great look behind the scenes at all kinds of territories.And as expected his behind the scenes stories from World Class are the highlight. I had heard about how wild the World Class locker room was. But after reading Hart's book I found out what I had heard wasn't even half of what was going on.Of course there is lots of stories of the Von Erich boys partying and drug use. And since Gary managed him we get all kinds of Gino Hernandez stories.

I have read around 13 wrestler bios. With Foley's first book,Jericho's first book and Bob Holly's being my faves. This book quickly jumped up to the front of that list. Gary pulls no punches. Gary is as hard on himself as he is on everyone else.

Now a few words about the e book copy. Since it is from the first draft,there is  a few changes between this and the actual printed version. Chapter 12 is missing from my copy. Which I am told deals with the first airplane crash Hart was in. Supposedly a few things in the chapter about Gary working with the Chicago mob are changed. Talking to people that have read both versions I keep getting told that while this first draft is really good,the final printed version is amazing.

As for how after all these years the first draft got leaked. I have heard that before the book was published Gary and his family sent out the first draft to prospective publishers. Most people seem to think that is how this version leaked. With a few people thinking it is someone inside the WWE that leaked it. I first heard about the leak at a wrestling forum I have been reading for 15 years. Someone mentioned reading it. So I PMed them asking where to find a copy. They sent me a link to where I could download it. The next day I mentioned to some friends at another forum about the book. Sent them a copy. And the next day the file showed up at a major wrestling torrent site.

Normally with stuff that has been legally released I prefer to get a legal copy. But unless a new printing of the book happens,this e book version is the only affordable way to read what I think is one of the best wrestling biographies.

My Life in Wrestling gets a 4.75 outta 5.

2015 Reading Challenge Book 030 Dark Horse Presents volume 3

TITLE-The Best of Dark Horse Presents Volume 3
FORMAT-Trade Paperback
COST-99 cents

I loved reading the black and white anthology comic Dark Horse Presents. It is a title that I always look for in cheap bins. Once again I was using an Amazon giftcard I received for X-mas.This is a 132 page collection of 20 one page and short stories.
What appealed to me with Dark Horse Presents was the collection of talent. You never knew who all would show up in each issue.Some of the better known talents in this collection are,Paul "Concrete" Chadwick,Matt "Grendal" Wagner,Timothy"Scout"Truman,Ed "Lowlife" Brubaker,Everett"Duckman" Peck,Eddie"Deadface"Campbell and Adam Hughes.

The stand out stories of the 20 in this trade are.

The Aerialist,written and drawn by Matt Wagner. This appears to be the first part of a multiple part story. Set in the future.Where relationships between men and women is outlawed. Just when the story is starting to get interesting it ends. Going in I knew that some of the stuff in this trade would be R-rated. But I wasn't expecting full frontal male nudity. I am tempted to track down the rest of this story.

Jungle of the giants by Tim and Ben Truman. This short science fiction tale has a father fighting off giant insects. And contains a nice O'henry twist at the end.

From Dark Horse Presents issue 36 we get a well drawn Aliens vs Predator story. Before we got two horrible AVP films,Dark Horse published plenty of really well done stories. This one while short is a good read.

Burning Man written by Ed Brubaker. Before Brubaker was at Marvel,he was getting lots of attention for his autobiographical comics. This tale is about a pre-teen Ed. Who with his friends sees a man get set on fire. And Brubaker goes into detail about how seeing this affected him through out his life.

Everett Peck does a very short Duckman piece. I wish there was a trade reprinting all the Duckman stuff.

Bacchus:a God and his Dog by Eddie Campbell. The Greek good of wine and revelry tells a tale of making wine and his loyal dog. I love Eddie Campbell's Deadface/Bacchus stuff.

And finally ,and also the last story in the colleciton.Hip-deep in the consciousness stream,Adam Hughes does the art. In this tale of the editor of Dark Horse Presents needs 8 pages to fill out an issue. They get Hughes to draw his normal gorgeous women.And play around with the conventions of cheesecake artwork.

The stories I didn't talk about range from great art but boring story to meh art but entertaining story.Just like how an anthology ,be it film,book or comic,you get stuff that you enjoy and stuff that you will never read again. The hit or miss ratio of this trade is pretty good. If it was a baseball player it would be batting 300 with a decent amount of RBIs. Hell this trade is the 1994 Frank Thomas of comic anthology collections.

The Best of Dark Horse Presents volume 3 gets a 3.85 outta 5.

2015 Reading Challenge Book 029 Nexus Archives volume 2 by Mike Baron and Steve Rude

TITLE-Nexus Archives volume 2
AUTHOR-Mike Baron
COST-98 cents

I have read scattered issues of Nexus.And enjoyed what I had read. But as far as I know these hardcover archive collections are the only non-floppy format collections. And this hardcover from Dark Horse comics is well done. The paper they use is great. It makes the art and colors look great,but isn't that super glossy paper I see in most trades. As you might be able to tell from the picture this is an ex-library book. The reason why I haven't bought any of these collections before is the cost. The hardcovers reprint 7 issues and cost $50. Which is way too high. Most of these issues aren't hard to find in cheap bins. So back after X-mas I was using an Amazon giftcard I had gotten from one of my aunts. Saw I could get this for 98 cents plus shipping.

This collection reprints Nexus volume 2 issues 5 through 11. Now most of the Nexus stuff I have read was either from way later in the series or some of the crossovers that were done,like Nexus meets Magnus Robot Fighter. I had already gotten the three trades IDW did of Mike Baron's other 80s indy series Badger. And I have been a fan of Steve Rude's art for years now.

The stand outs in this collection are the issues where Nexus meets up with Badger. Nexus and Judah Maccabee crash landing on a weird planet. On this planet they meet up with Badger,and the three had lots of wacky adventures trying to escape the planet. I really enjoy how each issue has small things happening that later on become major plot points.

After reading this I am going to track down the rest of the archives. I had found volume 1 for $1.95 plus shipping. I ordered it off Amazon Marketplace. But an hour or so after I made my order it was cancelled. I checked the the seller had relisted the book ,but now wants 10 bucks plus shipping. And that isn't a bad price. So I will end up ordering it soon.

Nexus archives volume 2 gets a 4.45 outta 5

2015 Reading Challenge Book 028 Console Wars by Blake J Harris

TITLE-Console Wars
AUTHOR-Blake J Harris

A friend got the e book version of this book last year. He doesn't like reading books on a computer so he gave the file to me.Having been a teen when the Genesis vs Nintendo war was going on I was pretty interested in reading this book.

The book is mostly told from the head of Sega of America's point of view.He had been working for Mattel when he gets hired to take over Sega's American office. And by doing stuff that made the Sega of Japan offices go nuts,he is able to bring Sega from having at the most 15% of the USA video game market to having 60%. But thanks to various issues with the Japan branch  we get to see why and how Sega went from being ,even if for a short while,the number 1 video game company,to being an also ran.

We do get to see parts of Nintendo's side of this war. And how thanks to them fucking over Sony they ended up indirectly creating the console that caused Nintendo from being a valid home console competitor to being 3rd place in the home console market.

Honestly there are plenty of parts of this book that got boring real quick. I had to stop myself from skipping over quite  a few parts.

The interesting parts are all well written. And even after having done lots of research on this era of video game history there is still bunches of stuff I had never heard about before. Like how Donkey Kong Country pretty much won Nintendo the 16 bit wars. Before it came out they were struggling. Mostly because Sega was marketing themselves as the system the cool kids play. And Nintendo was the console for kids.

Console Wars by Blake J Harris gets a 2.15 outta 5.

2015 Reading Challenge Book 027 Extinction Parade by Max Brooks

TITLE-The Extinction Parade
AUTHOR-Max Brooks
FORMAT-Trade Paperback

I was given this as a gift right before X-mas. Someone had found it at Walmart. Some quick info. This trade was published by Avatar. Who is known for their extremely violent and gory comics. With some of the stuff they publish being NC-17 levels of gore. So we were both surprised to not only find something like this at Walmart.where the only comics I see are manga,Walking Dead trades and the rare trade based on a Marvel movie. But that it was also racked with the kids books. So there was a book full of extreme gore sitting right next to Captain Underpants and Diary of a WImpy kid.I assume Walmart was carrying this because of Max Brooks.

The trade reprints the first 5 issues of this series. Set in a world where vampires and zombie exist. Our main characters are vampires. And over the first 4 issues we get the history of vampires in this world. And lots of double page spread of blood and violence. Then near the end of issue 4 one of the vampires realizes that the zombies almost outnumber the humans. And what is going to happen when all the humans are dead. So a small group of vampires start doing all they can to protect the humans.

While the idea behind this trade is interesting. It isn't executed that well. These 5 issues with some decent editing could have been 2 issues. There is way too many double page spreads that do nothing to help the story along. The art is good. But I have noticed that most stuff from Avatar has a similar look. Kind of like how in the early days most Valiant comics had a similar look. I am betting if anyone else had approached Avatar with this idea they would have been turned down. But now thanks to World War Z being a hit as a book and film Max Brooks is a big enough name that anything written by him has a good chance of selling well. If you can find this trade for $5 or less it is worth it. But at basically 17 bucks I feel like I didn't get my money's worth. Hell it took me about 15 minutes to read this. Not good,not good at all.

The Extinction Parade gets a 1.95 outta 5.

2015 Reading Challenge Book 026 After the Golden Age

BOOK TITLE-After the Golden Age
AUTHOR-Carrie Vaughn

We have 4 or 5 Dollar General stores in my town. At least 3 times a week I stop at one for a drink or a snack. And I always check their spinner rack of paperback books. Most of the time it is packed with lots of romance novels. But earlier this month I was at one of the DGs I am rarely in. I saw a copy of Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter,grabbed it and this book was behind it.

I had never heard of this book or the author before. But the cover looked interesting. And the synopsis on the back caught my attention.

Our main character is the daughter of the two most well known superheroes in the world. Her father is a Superman analogue. And her Mom comes off as a mixture of Wonder Woman and Sue Storm of the Fantastic Four. The daughter has no powers. And over her childhood and early teens she keeps getting kidnapped by her parent's super villains.

The novel starts and she is in her mid 20s. Hasn't talked to her parents in a long time. We find out that in her late teens she rebelled by joining up with her parents most hated villain. Since she was under 18 and it got ruled she was temporarily insane,her doing this betrayal is covered up. Now she is working for an accounting firm and is helping build a case against the same villain she teamed up with years ago.

But during the court case the public finds out about her turning evil years ago and this causes her life to goto shit.

I really enjoyed how the focus of the book was on how it would be to grow up with both your parents being world famous heroes. You get the feeling that our lead sometimes feels like a caveman surrounded by Gods who walk the Earth.

Doing a bit of research,IE looking up the author on Amazon,I have found out she has written another novel set in the same world. And it also seems to deal with ordinary humans dealing with living in a world with superheroes.

After the Golden Age gets a 3.45 outta 5.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

2015 Reading Challenge Book 025 Life after Death by Damien Echols

BOOK TITLE-Life after Death
AUTHOR-Damien Echols

While looking around Walmart about a week ago I saw a nice sight. A few times a year they put out a huge bin of hardcover books. Which are marked way down.I have almost always lucked out and found great biographies. The cover caught my eye. Then I saw who the author was. And with it being $6 pretty much I grabbed it.

It was sometime in 96ish that I first heard about the West Memphis 3 case. Since then I had somewhat kept up on what was happening. When this book came out a few years back I had wanted to read it. But never thought to ILL it from the library. 

The book is half the story of Damien's childhood and teen years,half prison journal. The childhood and teen years turned out to be the most interesting.Even after close to 20 years of me reading stuff about Damien and the other 2 guys,there was still lots of stuff in this part that was new to me.

The prison journal stuff is decent. But got a little repetitive.Damien's thoughts on religion ,while very different from mine, were so well explained that I could totally see his point of view. He practices a mixture of Buddhism and Christianity. Taking the parts of each that are similar and merging it all into a way for him to deal with the hell that is his life.

I have no idea how interesting this will be to someone that doesn't at least know the basic stuff about the WM3 case. But if you have seen one of the many documentaries about the case,this book is a good source of more information.

Life after Death by Damien Echols gets a 3.95 outta 5.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Return to Vendor's Emporium Feb 02 2015

It has been months since I went to Vendor's.Mostly because my last 3 trips they had nothing I wanted. So after having lunch in town,which cost me much less than I expected,I wanted to stop by. Hoping that maybe there would be something that I am looking for.

I got to the booth up front that always has a mixture of toys and books.
I have never seen this before. It is around 2 foot tall. Pretty sure one arm moves.The price was only 15 bucks. So I figured if I didn't find anything else I wanted I would grab it. I try to limit myself to 20 bucks or under total on my trips here. If I didn't set a limit I would spend way too much. Below my wrist you can sorta see a Spongebob Book. It was on top of a huge stack of comics,magazines and books.
Found this I am assuming early 70s Marvel romance comic. To my eye the cover art looks like Romita. And $5 isn't a bad price. But I doubt I would have read it. Still it is a neat find. Most comics I find around here are mid 90s glut.
This is a guide book to the original Beauty and the Beast tv show. It is in really really good shape. And would be an interesting read.But the 18 buck price made me say no. While that isn't a bad price,it is about 8 bucks more than I am willing to pay.

 I found these hanging on the left side of the booth. Made by a model company the style reminded me of Big Daddy Roth's Rat Fink stuff. For $2.50 I get a pack of 5 trading cards and the well painted and highly detailed figure with a base.

I found this one behind a rack of Waterworld toys. IIRC the Weird-ohs were what Rat Fink was part of.Like the above this has a pack of 5 cards and the figure.

Looked through the one booth that is packed with books. Nothing that I wanted.Well that isn't true found one book I wanted. But it was a hardback and my shelves for hardcovers are already overflowing.

Finally I got to the back corner booth that usually has comics. The box had a sign saying they were all now $1 each or if you bought at least 10 then they became 50 cents each. I started digging down into the box. Hoping to find 10 comics I wanted.

D.P.7 issue 2
Another book closer to my full run of the New Universe stuff.I have owned this issue at least 3 times. But keep losing my copies in moves.This comic always felt like a more realistic take on the X-men. Mark Grunwald wrote most of if not all of this series.

Justice issue 2 and Kickers INC issue 2
Two of the New Universe titles I never read much of. Plus another 2 books closer to my full run.Justice from my almost 30 year ago memory was an alien cop or something. He could create an energy sword with one hand and the other created a shield. He was stuck on Earth. IIRC he had amnesia.

Kickers Inc was a super powered football team. I think they were also bounty hunters. The quarterback of the team got a feature role in the Pitt,Draft and War mini series or one shots.This was the title from the original 8 that caught the most crap.

The Weird issue 2
By Starlin and Wrightson,I have wanted to read this mini series for a bit. I didn't notice until I got home that the price sticker was on the book instead of the bag. Meh it was 50 cents.
Airboy issue 5
This gorgeous Dave Stevens' cover is what caught my eye. For 50 cents,which is also the original cover price,I will buy any comic with Stevens art. And Airboy is another title I have slowly been collecting a full run of.
The Badger issue 10 and 12
I miss read the issue numbers. Already got both of these issues in trade paperbacks.
I heard so much about Elflord back when I was first going to comic shops. This is the final issue of the black and white run.

Well I needed to more comics to make it 10. So much of the box was early Image stuff. Lots of Cyberforce and Youngblood. Then I found the next book.
Stark Future issue 2
Seems to be a science fiction series. Published by Aircel,back before they got bought up by Malibu.

Needing one more comic I found the next one at the very bottom of the box.I have never heard of the comic,the company or anyone that worked on it.

 Kyra issue 3
The art on the front cover isn't bad.Flipped it over and...
Kind of a ripoff Boris Vallejo or Julie Bell look. Then I noticed something strange about this comic. It isn't the normal comic book dimensions.It is a bit taller and bit wider than the average comic.

 I placed a regular sized comic on top of the front and back cover to show how much bigger it is.

So I had 10 comics that will be $5 total. The three figures that are $2.50 each. So that is $7.50. Before taxes that is 12.50. I got to the register. The lady starts ringing me up. Now maybe the booth with the figures had a sale,but she told me my total was $9.35. I know she rang the comics up right. Because the other lady told her the comics were ten for $5.

Overall not a bad trip to Vendor's.The three figures are great. Might have to do a posting on them soon. Haven't read any of the comics yet,but the over sized one has my interest.