Tuesday, December 28, 2010

JLA 18 - Vixen vs. The Suicide Squad & androids who like getting it on, then fall asleep and dream of electric sheep

I had a posting up not to long ago about stuff I had missed over the last few years. Well I found recently in a back issue box JLA 18. This was an issue I had actually looked at when it was on the stands but opted not to get it at the time. Now that I actually have bought it and read it I can kinda see why at the time I didn't get it. In general my interest in comics was at a bit of a low around that time and if you look at the cover it pretty much eludes to some big time battle royalel between the Squad and the JLA. When in reality almost all the fighting is between just Vixen and the Squad. Which in and of it's self is pretty cool, but at the time I was hoping for something more along the lines of a "rumble" like at the end of The Outsiders (the movie) between the socias and greasers.
Interestingly enough this happened at a time when Vixen's powers were a bit out of whack in which she was using the powers of those around her (both friend and foe) instead of abilities derived from the animal kingdom. Vixen is pretty bad ass on any given day but unless your Superman or Wonder Woman you gotta have some kind of edge if your going to take on the Suicide Squad solo.

The other thing at the time was that this was a double feature issue which meant the JLA/Suicide Squad cross over was shorter then the standard 22 page comic book format. And the second story involved the red Tornado who I was never a big fan off. Mostly because of that garish look of his. He gives the original Capt. Boomerang a run for his money. In that way the Red Tornado is kinda like the Wonder Man of the DC Universe in which the creative teams were never able to put together a decent look for him over the years. But I'm glad I read that Red Tornado story anyways because it was good and gave some excellent insight into the character. Being an android, RT reminds me a lot of The Vision from Marvel. Especially the part where talks about living is among other things "making love to my wife and then smelling her scent on me after wards". So yes I'd say here's one android who can appreciate some of the upsides of being human. I think RT could stand to give Data from Star Trek a good talking too about the birds and the bees. Also, the RT story opens up with a line about droids dreaming about electric sheep. All you Blade Runner fans should have picked up on that. I want to make sure I don't conclude this posting with out mentioning that the art through out the entire issue was kick ass. If only DC would give this guy a visual make over we'd be all set.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Sociopaths, secret agents and stealthly burglers, welcome to the Suicide Squad

One of the cool things that helped make things interesting in the Suicide Squad is that it was not just made up of criminals trying to buy off prison time. The team was a "trail mix" of all sorts of people with special powers and talents. Tom Tresser a.k.a. Nemesis was something of a secret agent type that was a master of disguise, espionage and in general quick on his feet in dodgy situations. He would have been perfect for the Squad if not for that inconvenient and unwavering sense of morality of his. Which should come as no surprise put him at odds with Waller from time to time. He always felt like he owed people something rather it was Uncle Sam, Rick Flag or Even Eden ( Nightshade, who he had a thing for) that had him coming and going through out much of the Suicide Squad's 65 issues.

Adam Cray was a cat burglar who Waller recruited to steal the original Atom's (Ray Palmer, who was presumed dead at the time) size changing belt from his ex-wife. He used it as the "New" Atom and worked for Waller for a while. He was something of a novice super type, but an effective team member that also happened to have a good sense of humor and was an all around likable guy. Unfortunately some of Palmer's enemies who thought the New Atom was Palmer in disguise eventually caught up to him and nailed him, literally.

If there is any member of the Suicide Squad that could make characters like Capt. Boomerang and Werner Vertigo look like socially well adjusted people it would no doubt be Cliff Carmichael a.k.a The Thinker. Thanks to some sophisticated micro circuitry installed in his brain this certifiable sadistic psychopath had the ability to make people do his biding by telling them verbally ( just like Maxwell Lord before Wonder Woman broke his neck). This power however only worked on someone who could understand what he was saying. In one instance Carmichael attempted to get someone under his control who was within ear shot but unknown to Carmichael his would be victim didn't speak English for which there was no effect. In the Suicide Squad story arc we learn that Carmichael was involved in some sort of cyberspace cat n mouse game with Oracle who we now know to be the paraplegic Barbara Gordan living at the time under the false identity Amy Beddoes. Carmichael eventually tracks down Gordon (in the real world) and nearly kills her had it not been for the timely intervention of Amanda Waller. Waller finds a way to black mail Carmichael into working for the Squad but eventually finds Carmichael to be too dangerous and unstable. Carmichael sells out the Squad to Amanda's enemies on two occasions but manages to escape Waller's wrath the first time.
The second incident involved Gen. Eiling's coup during a Squad mission that Carmichael was instrumental in helping orchestrate. Carmichael's treachery was put to an abrupt end by King Faraday who shot Carmichael several times in the head and chest. This was after Faraday himself had been shot by Carmichael and presumed dead but unknown to Carmichael Faraday had worn a bullet proof vest. "Cliffy" provided some great moments in the pages of the Suicide Squad but it was time for somebody to put him down. Little did I know Carmichael was a character in Firestorm before appearing in the pages of the Suicide Squad

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Suicide Squad & Checkmate "mini - mes"

Through out all the numerous searches I've done for the Suicide Squad and Checkmate I've come across these little icons scattered all over the web for weeks now. I like how they have these over sized heads they kinda remind me of little bobble head dolls. So I decided to see how many I could find that were characters who have been with the Squad. To my surprise I found characters like Major Victory and Nightshade but had no luck finding Count Vertigo or Poison Ivy first. Later I did ending up finding Poison Ivy but still no Count Vertigo. Plus how can this set of characters be complete with out Duchess in the line up too? So I went ahead and made a Duchess figure and Count vertigo figure using certain paint tools photoshop and the "body parts" of other mini characters in the DC Universe. Go ahead and be sure to take a closer look at em. I found a mini of ROM too which I posted on my other blog for anyone out there that's interested.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Suicide Squad fan made costumes!

So one day I inadvertently stumbled across a photo of this guy in a Captain Boomerang costume and that made me wonder how many other Suicide Squad characters I could find costumes on the internet. I was only able to locate this Deadshot costume as far as members who were there from the beginning to the "end". But as you can see here I was also able to find costume photos of the others like Vixen and Poison Ivy who have done a "tour of duty" with the Squad.
Now I know what you all are thinking about one of the photos. Yes that is indeed the beautiful Pam Grier. As you all know she already plays Amanda Waller on Smallville. And she does a good job if you can envision the character being more attractive and having some sex appeal. Ok, lots of sex appeal because this is Pam Grier ( Foxy Brown) we're talking about after all. But when I saw this photo of her I thought this is really cool because it reminds me of Waller during those times in the Suicide Squad where she actually found her self in the field. That's another thing that makes her so cool is that she can handle herself on the political stage as well as being able to fire a gun or throw a punch when she has to. Probably her best moment was when the team found themselves on Apocalypse and Waller went toe to toe with Granny Goodness.
http://scans-daily.dreamwidth.org/1015312.html Not to mention her attempt to blow Lashina a.k.a Duchess into smithereens with what was described as a "mega-gun". This photo collage is a pretty large file so you should be able to magnify it for a better look. Wouldn't that have been smokin hot if I could have found a really nice looking athletically built woman in a well made Lashina costume during my photo search. Yes Aliera, this blog is authored by a male neanderthal just like most of the viewers.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Aussie vs. Russkie, got a little captain in ya?

So I checked out the Firestorm blog today and took a special interest in the Mayfairstivus Day 8 -Weasel, Mindboggler, Stalnoivolk and Zastrow posting http://firestormfan.com/2010/12/08/mayfairstivus8/. All four of these Firestorm villains have been in the pages of the Suicide Squad with three of them actually having been Squad member short timers (Weasel, Mindboggler, Stalnoivolk). Now I had also just recently had a Suicide Squad greatest hits posting that showcased some of the best beat downs in Squad history. Looking back I should have included this moment in that line up. For all of you who know the Zastrow character I don't have to tell you what a creepy heartless son of a bitch this KGB scum is. I mean this guy pretty much fits the mold of a classic James Bond villain you can't wait to see die. Now I don't know what his current situation is but at least we have the satisfaction of having seen him get a right hook compliments of Captain Boomerang! This is definitely a classic Boomerang moment not just because of the punch but also because of what is said after wards between him and Waller. If your wondering about the Batman costume for this mission Boomerang had to impersonate Batman for a while and in doing so was captured by Zastrow's meta human Red Shadows.
Coming up next folks, we feature fan made costumes of the Suicide Squad!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Why didn't the Squad ever run into The Swamp Thing?

It's a shame there was never any sort of cross over between The Swamp Thing and the Suicide Squad. With Belle Reeve being located in the swamps of Louisiana it seemed like it was an ideal set up for an encounter between the Squad and Swamp Thing. I kinda imagine a story line for that issue to go something along the lines of the Squad having a random encounter with the Swamp Thing as they under take a mission that is locally based and just happens to be around where "Swampy" is trying to do some good. Then of course they mistakenly think he's a monster created by some villain or evil org. their after and then it's on.
I'll reckon the Squad wouldn't have much luck trying to hurt him and before long Swamp Thing would make good his escape before any body really got hurt and the Squad would be left with an "unsolved mysteries" kinda issue conclusion. I was actually a Swamp Thing fan long before I would ever even have heard about the Suicide Squad. It actually started with that cheesy Wes Craven B horror flick. But hey, I was around 11 at the time. Plus, there were repeated scenes with Adrienne Barbeau like this through out much of the film.
But this actually did get me to notice the Swamp Thing series that was out at the time and soon I would be collecting it on a pretty regular basis. As crazy as it is to believe I actually started loosing interest in the series not too long after Allan Moore took over the writing. Now looking back I understand why and it wasn't because I had ADD or something. I would develop that later on as an adult. It's because I think that Allan's writing was really a little too sophisticated for me at the time too really appreciate as I suspect it was for most people in their early teens as well. So as result I began gravitating toward more action oriented comic titles. I'm afraid it was just that time and just that place where I was at a point in my developmental stage in which I was more likely to appreciate Adrienne Barbeau in a torn up dress then an Allan Moore story. Today the two things are on more equal footing in my mind and at least I can get my hands on those Allan Moore Swamp Thing issues. For some good insight on what made Swamp Thing under Allan Moore so amazing just go to this review at Siskoids blog of geekery. Notice how the comments section is almost completely dominated with my ramblings? Back then I was going under the profile name of "The Dude". http://siskoid.blogspot.com/2008/09/welcome-to-swamp.html

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Amanda Waller for President - "change we can believe in"

I can't believe someone else out there hasn't come out with this yet given all the Amanda Waller/Green Lantern movie bruhaha. Glad I got the jump on this before anyone else. Couldn't decide right away rather I should "Obamanize" Angela Bassett or maybe the Justice League cartoon version of Waller but finally settled on C.C.H Pounder who seems to be the candidate out there that most people would want as Amanda Waller in a live action movie.
Back during the 2008 presidential campaign the whole possibility of the first black or female ( sorry Hillary) president had everybody so excited. I remember this one news special where they went around and asked black women if they identified with Hillary more because she is a woman or Obama more because he was black. The responses were interesting but if Amanda Waller were running for president that would have made much more in roads to this "change we can believe in" stuff that neither Obama, or Hillary (ditto for the MaCain/Palin ticket) could have competed with. But the most important thing is, unlike Obama or probably Hillary had she won, Amanda Waller would be able to get shit done! Just think about it. With all her connections as Checkmate's former White Queen to say nothing about having been the director of Task Force X, no one else would be better suited to dealing with Washington's bipartisan bullshit politics in a "decisive" manner. When it comes down to the 2012 presidential elections at this rate I'll just be writing in Amanda Waller I think just for the hell of it. Here's a good question for you all, based on what you know of the Amanda Waller character do you think she would run as a democrat, republican or as an independent?

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The Suicide Squad's greatest hits.

I've compiled some clip art of what I think have been the greatest hits in the fight scenes of the Suicide Squad. By greatest hits, I mean those cases where the art was drawn so cool as to really really effectively convey the impact to the reader of someone taking a hit. Almost making you feel it in the same way like when you see a guy get kicked in the balls. And as an avid soccer player I've scene that a lot. Unfortunately on a few occasions I was that guy who received the kick and not just watched it happen some other chump. Anyways, I'd like you to weigh in here on which hit you think is the best.

1) Bronze Tiger give this scum bag guard a real jaw breaker during Rick Flag's prison break. This schmuck ain't wakin up any time soon I imagine.

2) Duchess puts down a small impromptu coup during a mission by making examples of Vertigo and Boomerang.

3) Here's one of those rare occasions where Duchess finds herself on the receiving end of a beating for a change, compliments of Major Victory during the Janus Directive.

4) Nemesis bravely tries to thwart a break in to Belle Reeve by the Female Furies but finds that a fully automatic rifle is no match for the metallic lashes of Lashina. I just always loved the way he makes that pin wheel spin after getting whipped both figuratively and literally.

5) Rick Flag lays a good one here on the leader of the Jihad, Rustam. This is from a fight scene in which Rick goes on a one way solo mission to destroy the Jihad HQ. Oh how cool it would be if this were me busting osama bin laden or mel gibson's jaw instead however.

Let me digress for just a moment here, I just wanted to say how the above panel of colonel Flag and Rustam has always reminded me of the classic fight between Vindicator and Wolverine drawn by John Byrne in the pages of Alpha Flight. This proves once again one of the things that makes "Wolvie" so cool is that he can take a hit like a champ. But this panel doesn't count so don't vote on it despite how cool it is. For some reason my jaw starting hurting after I finished writing this posting.