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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby Master Higgins » Mar 10th, 2015 @ 9:58pm

LISTEN TO THE LATEST EPISODE: The Comic Conspiracy — Episode 200 (2015-03-10)
This week, we discuss 200 episodes of The Comic Conspiracy, the new DC Universe, Supergirl, Valiant Comics in China, Marvel Studios out of San Diego Comic-Con, the new Avengers: Age of Ultron and Daredevil trailers, and listener questions.
Running Time: 1h 28m 41s
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby kenzo » Mar 11th, 2015 @ 7:09am

Holy shit... Bryce... Buddy... Higgins asked for fucking top THREE marvel books and you attempt to give him 20. WTF is wrong with you, bro! You don't even do the halfway intelligent thing of just giving the list. You actually try to give commentary on everything. Swear to god man, you're like a special level of retarded.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby AdamFitchFan » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 6:32am

http://www.comicbookresources.com/artic ... ts-request


Really angry about this Higgins :(
Why did DC cave in to the demands of some crazy people?
That cover was fine and I'm sick of people censoring art or making people feel they did something wrong. The Killing Joke is a classic and I don't like what they did.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby CrossXhunteR » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 6:44am

May favorite thing about all this is watching Cameron Stewart (The current Batgirl writer) be an ass on twitter. He keeps calling it his book and his character and the fact that the cover did not align with it. I wonder if he knows that it isn't actually his character or his book, but DC's.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby kenzo » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 7:13am

AdamFitchFan wrote:http://www.comicbookresources.com/article/dc-comics-cancels-batgirl-joker-variant-at-artists-request

Really angry about this Higgins :(
Why did DC cave in to the demands of some crazy people?
That cover was fine and I'm sick of people censoring art or making people feel they did something wrong. The Killing Joke is a classic and I don't like what they did.
The guy who drew it asked it to be pulled. So... he's censoring himself?

I always hear Higgins and other people making excuses for shitty variant covers saying "they're variant covers, they cater for a small niche and nobody sees them". Except that this isn't 1992 and everyone sees them because they get pasted all over the internet. And I also ask FitchFan, were you going to buy this or something? Does this actually affect you? If you were superdooper looking forward to getting your hands on this variant cover of Batgirl being all violated and shit by the Joker, my apologies. But I'm gonna guess that most people whining about this don't actually have a horse in this race.

Speaking to the cover directly though, this cover is pretty shitty. If only because it doesn't remotely reflect the kind of comic you'd see inside. To which I preemptively retort to the default counter "Hurr Durr when have comic covers ever reflected the interior of the comic?" - that's kind of a problem in general, don't you think? What if you played a game called "Dragon Age" with a bunch of dragons pasted on the front box and there were no fucking dragons in the game. Would you be OK with that? Would you be OK with going to the supermarket and buying a bag of flour only to find that inside was a bunch of baking soda? Also, Killing Joke is probably one of the stupidest Bat-stories there are. Let's fridge the girl so that our MCs can have some revenge motivation - so edgy and original! :lol:
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby darfox8 » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 9:23am

Generally agree with Kenzo on this one. This is what I tweeted last night.

"The artist decided to remove the Joker variant. I don't feel this is censorship. He sympathized with some of the people speaking out."

"Unless you're trying to make the argument that the artist had no artistic integrity I don't know why you cared about the cover to begin with"

"Some of the people speaking out against it might of been stupid but so are plenty of the people defending it."
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby Vyria » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 12:25pm

AdamFitchFan wrote:http://www.comicbookresources.com/article/dc-comics-cancels-batgirl-joker-variant-at-artists-request


Really angry about this Higgins :(
Why did DC cave in to the demands of some crazy people?
That cover was fine and I'm sick of people censoring art or making people feel they did something wrong. The Killing Joke is a classic and I don't like what they did.

"Crazy people" who felt a lighthearted, woman empowering book didn't need a creepy, violent alternate cover that harkened back to that character being maimed and abused.

The cover is fine, and would be a good piece as something like an insert in a Killing Joke reprint. The current Batgirl is not the place for it. Albuquerque realized this and rightly had it pulled.

Some of the other Joker Month variants are silly and fun and it's just dumb Batgirl's wasn't in that vein.
kenzo wrote:I always hear Higgins and other people making excuses for shitty variant covers saying "they're variant covers, they cater for a small niche and nobody sees them".

Worth noting in this case: I think the Joker Month variants are 50/50 splits, so the cover really would have been everywhere.
Last edited by Vyria on Mar 17th, 2015 @ 12:40pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby CrossXhunteR » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 12:39pm

People don't actually buy variants to read the book, do they? Why not get the regular cover if you are interested in the story and save yourself some time/money?
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby AdamFitchFan » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 12:58pm

kenzo wrote:
AdamFitchFan wrote:http://www.comicbookresources.com/article/dc-comics-cancels-batgirl-joker-variant-at-artists-request

Really angry about this Higgins :(
Why did DC cave in to the demands of some crazy people?
That cover was fine and I'm sick of people censoring art or making people feel they did something wrong. The Killing Joke is a classic and I don't like what they did.
The guy who drew it asked it to be pulled. So... he's censoring himself?


People were asking him to change the cover so they were asking for it to be censored.
Other People were threatening him and he pulled it then. Why bother to draw something you don't think is fitting, announce it, get threatened and then pull it? Doesn't make sense he should have never drew it if he knew it would have made people angry and its wrong for him to cave in to threats from idiots on the internet just being trolls.

and I also ask FitchFan, were you going to buy this or something? Does this actually affect you? If you were superdooper looking forward to getting your hands on this variant cover of Batgirl being all violated and shit by the Joker, my apologies. But I'm gonna guess that most people whining about this don't actually have a horse in this race.


Love Batman comics and most of the spinoff comics including Batgirl and yes I would have bought that cover because I love the Killing Joke and thought it was a nice homage and would be a nice variant to own.

Speaking to the cover directly though, this cover is pretty shitty. If only because it doesn't remotely reflect the kind of comic you'd see inside. To which I preemptively retort to the default counter "Hurr Durr when have comic covers ever reflected the interior of the comic?" - that's kind of a problem in general, don't you think? What if you played a game called "Dragon Age" with a bunch of dragons pasted on the front box and there were no fucking dragons in the game. Would you be OK with that? Would you be OK with going to the supermarket and buying a bag of flour only to find that inside was a bunch of baking soda? Also, Killing Joke is probably one of the stupidest Bat-stories there are. Let's fridge the girl so that our MCs can have some revenge motivation - so edgy and original! :lol:


The cover of comic books are infamous since the beginning of having artwork of things that don't even happen inside the comic and I've always been fine with it... I take it by your post that you don't like it. That is your opinion and I have mine.

Also Killing Joke is stupid? one of the most critically acclaimed most famous and highly regarded Batman comics is stupid because you say so? LOL.
By the way Batgirl getting crippled was the best thing to ever happen because she became one of my favorite characters ever the amazing badass hacker known as Oracle.

Its been decades since TKJ came out but even now its STILL a hot topic issue and its getting so annoying that controversy arises whenever there is anything remotely paying homage/tribute to it.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby darfox8 » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 1:12pm

As comic books become bigger they are going to be under more microscopes. Some of these are shitty PC "agendas" but other will be legitimate modern criticism.

I feel the excuse of "That's how it's always been!" isn't enough. You can't have it both ways. This is basically "'Merica love it or leave it". The cover should maaaaybe reflect the insides. Maybe.

The companies clearly want these people reading their comics so they're going to listen to some of their comments.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby CrossXhunteR » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 1:23pm

Rafael Albuquerque was not threatened, even if DC's statement on the matter might read that way.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby Vyria » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 1:35pm

Nobody threatened Albuquerque. When he got commissioned by the art director, he probably was just happy to be offered a cover and got to work, without really thinking about it. Once he saw the reaction of fans and the creative team, he realized maybe it wasn't in the best taste and asked to have it pulled. I'm sorry you find that an unbelievable chain of events.

Also, Alan Moore himself says the Killing Joke is stupid, so it's not like Kenzo's in bad company with that line of thinking. I like the stuff about The Killing Joke, but it's impossible to argue that Babs in that book serves any purpose other than to give Batman some more manpain motivation. Len Wein famously approved the idea saying "Ok. Cripple the bitch."

If you want to thank someone for Oracle, don't thank Alan Moore and the Killing Joke. Thank Kim Yale and John Ostrander for being disgusted by the Killing Joke and refusing to let Barbara become irrelevant. Thank Chuck Dixon for popularizing her in his Bat-books. Celebrate the works and creators that actually brought you your favorite version of the character, not the book that left her crippled and abused.

EDIT: Something else I think worth talking about: This isn't the first time a cover with Barbara has harkened back to The Killing Joke or more broadly, Barbara and the Joker, and it likely won't be the last. The more successful versions of this have the Joker menacing Barbara, but show her in return as being capable and empowered rather than scared and vulnerable. I think my favorite of these is a Birds of Prey 124.
Image
She's being attacked by the Joker but is taking no shit, and by the blood on her tonfas has been more than holding her own against him. I still don't think a cover that violent or angry belongs on the current Batgirl. I use it to illustrate you can have a very evocative cover with those two that isn't just "hey, remember that time he did that really gross thing to her?"
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby CrossXhunteR » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 2:41pm

Image
Original on left. Edit on Right.

I wonder if it was like the edit to start with if the response would have been as strong.

Edit:
Image
I think that is kind of funny for how weird it looks.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby Vyria » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 2:58pm

Yeah, I just saw that Supes version on another forum and honestly it's just as horrifying as the original, so I guess great job Ray Dillon.

The edit changes the context on that picture a little and I do think that the change in her reaction makes it slightly less objectionable. I think the outcry would have been less strong, but I think there would have still been one, justifiably so. A few more steps in that direction may have made it fine in content, though maybe still not in tone for the book to which it was assigned.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby kenzo » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 5:46pm

I think Dar and Vyria have sufficiently addressed the fact that no, guy wasn't getting threatened (and honestly, even if he was, who gives a fuck about internet trolls launching empty threats on social media) and criticism against this variant cover is reasonable. And FitchFan, all I can say about your variant cover purchasing habit is that I'm very sorry and have a huge amount of sympathy for your wallet/bank account. So what I will address:

AdamFitchFan wrote:The cover of comic books are infamous since the beginning of having artwork of things that don't even happen inside the comic and I've always been fine with it... I take it by your post that you don't like it. That is your opinion and I have mine.
You seemed to have completely glossed over and dismissed my criticism here, even though I think it's not just a subjective opinion, it's a matter of business ethics and being smart. Putting intentionally misleading shit on the covers of your comics is messed up. It's false advertising. And it's going to alienate more readers than not. Every time I see the cover of a comic or read a solicit and be like "oh man, that sounds awesome!" and then find that the interior has nothing to do with that cover/solicit, I rage a little and then check out of that comic line. It's petty and it's fucking stupid. Yeah, you might trick someone into buying your shitty comic. But then you burn long term bridges and risk long term profitability. You might be fine with getting continually duped, but most people aren't. I also think it's rich that you're pulling the whole "people have differing opinions about this, respect it" line when you're so up in arms and livid about people having a differing opinion on whether or not that variant cover is appropriate.

AdamFitchFan wrote:Also Killing Joke is stupid? one of the most critically acclaimed most famous and highly regarded Batman comics is stupid because you say so? LOL.
Vyria handled this subject pretty majestically too. But I just wanted to add that claiming a comic book is highly regarded and critically acclaimed is almost as laughable as saying the same for video games and the people who write about them.

AdamFitchFan wrote:Its been decades since TKJ came out but even now its STILL a hot topic issue and its getting so annoying that controversy arises whenever there is anything remotely paying homage/tribute to it.
This is a ridiculous argument to be making. "TKJ is old, therefore it should be immune from discussion and criticism." If it's too old to criticize, then it's too old to talk about in any context whatsoever and we should forget this POS ever existed. It's good to talk about old shit and see if it's worth holding up anymore as something good or if it's problematic in light of continually evolving social mores and in general changing standards of excellence.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby CrossXhunteR » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 6:05pm

It doesn't matter if the cover is appropriate or not. If you find it offensive, keep it to yourself. People bitched their way into change here.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby Vyria » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 6:42pm

CrossXhunteR wrote:It doesn't matter if the cover is appropriate or not. If you find it offensive, keep it to yourself. People bitched their way into change here.

God forbid a company or creators react to reasonable consumer feedback.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby LiQuid » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 6:57pm

Just because you're offended by something does not make it offensive.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby Vyria » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 7:57pm

LiQuid wrote:Just because you're offended by something does not make it offensive.

That's a completely false statement? Like the opposite of a tautology?

Seriously step back and examine why you're mad this got changed. This wasn't censorship. It was at the request of the artist, and it's not like the image was redacted by DC. It's not thematically appropriate for the book so it's not like you're losing something contextually from that series by not having that variant available. So, really, why are you mad?

If you're mad because Albuquerque payed attention to some fans who were bothered by real creepy cover referencing an act of extreme violence and sexual assault, then you need to get over it. That's a pretty legit thing to be upset about and something that probably doesn't belong on the cover of a Big 2 book, especially one aiming at the audience of Batgirl.

It's not like people are coming to take all the Zenoscope, Dynamite, and Aspen books. Some fans just want the books they like and that cater to them to stop having gross variant covers.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby Master Higgins » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 9:35pm

Vyria wrote:
kenzo wrote:I always hear Higgins and other people making excuses for shitty variant covers saying "they're variant covers, they cater for a small niche and nobody sees them".

Worth noting in this case: I think the Joker Month variants are 50/50 splits, so the cover really would have been everywhere.


It was open to order as many as you wanted, but those covers are never ordered nearly as high as the main cover. There would have been a few thousand copies out there, at most.

Lots more on the episode I'm posting soon, but I'm sure you know how our conversation about it goes. I'm not mad, I understand why it's pulled, just disappointed. It's a great image.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby Master Higgins » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 9:48pm

LISTEN TO THE LATEST EPISODE: The Comic Conspiracy — Episode 201 (2015-03-17)
This week, we discuss DC’s new costumes, Batgirl cover controversy, Netflix’s Marvel Knights, Orphan Black topping the sales charts, the Powers pilot, and listener questions. Starring Ryan Higgins, Brock Sager, Toby Sidler, and Charlie West.
Running Time: 1h 05m 06s
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby kenzo » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 10:53pm

Master Higgins wrote:I'm not mad, I understand why it's pulled, just disappointed. It's a great image.
I wish this was the extent to which you guys talked about it, because it's a non-issue and this is a very reasonable stance to take. But I know there's going to be a lot of unnecessary griping about 'sjws' and awful tumblr people such :( . Which is honestly ridiculous considering that's the crowd they're trying to sell this new Batgirl comic to in the first place, so if you're DC why the hell wouldn't you do the smart thing and pull a stupid cover like that?
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby Vyria » Mar 17th, 2015 @ 11:06pm

kenzo wrote:
Master Higgins wrote:I'm not mad, I understand why it's pulled, just disappointed. It's a great image.
I wish this was the extent to which you guys talked about it, because it's a non-issue and this is a very reasonable stance to take. But I know there's going to be a lot of unnecessary griping about 'sjws' and awful tumblr people such :( . Which is honestly ridiculous considering that's the crowd they're trying to sell this new Batgirl comic to in the first place, so if you're DC why the hell wouldn't you do the smart thing and pull a stupid cover like that?

Spoilers: They whine a little about tumblr boogeymen but not much. Higgins does the usual thing where he takes the anecdotal evidence of his store and extrapolates it to be representative of the comic audience at large while in the same breath admitting it doesn't follow industry numbers. The only thing that made me mad is Higgins and Toby do the erroneous thing I already bitched about: holding up The Killing Joke as being responsible for making Barbara Gordon relevant again.

EDIT: They also talk about rape in comics in a kind of callous way in what I assume is borne from ignorance. Rape is a particularly difficult and touchy form of violence to incorporate into fiction because it is both disgustingly common in real off but also typically does far more lasting psychological damage than other forms of violence. Because of those factors and a few others, typical types of superhero violence or even mass murder are far easier for readers to distance from personal experience than rape. A lot of the people upset about the cover, and a lot of those upset about Dr Light in Identity Crisis are likely reminded by those comics of very dark personal experiences. It's pretty gross to have something that personal and difficult then trotted out as a cheap, lazy plot point in a superhero comic. I'm not saying people shouldn't talk about rape in comics. What I am saying it's a topic that needs to be treated with a level of maturity big 2 superhero comics typically don't have time or ambition for.

One last point: What Joker did in The Killing Joke, disabling and taking nude pictures of Barbara, is unquestionably sexual assault. I hope we're at least all on the same page there.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby Vyria » Mar 18th, 2015 @ 1:01am

Higgins is spot on about crying Doom though.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby CrossXhunteR » Mar 18th, 2015 @ 3:10am

Just remember, Barbara Gordon was not raped.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby kenzo » Mar 18th, 2015 @ 7:17am

CrossXhunteR wrote:Just remember, Barbara Gordon was not raped.
Nope. They just intentionally violate Barbara Gordon and invoke rape imagery in a way that leaves the door open for that actually being a possibility between the comic frames that you don't see - all so you as a reader can self-insert as Batman and get P.O.'d.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby Vyria » Mar 18th, 2015 @ 9:46am

CrossXhunteR wrote:Just remember, Barbara Gordon was not raped.

Vyria wrote:One last point: What Joker did in The Killing Joke, disabling and taking nude pictures of Barbara, is unquestionably sexual assault. I hope we're at least all on the same page there.
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby Master Higgins » Mar 24th, 2015 @ 10:13pm

LISTEN TO THE LATEST EPISODE: The Comic Conspiracy — Episode 202 (2015-03-24)
This week, we discuss the Secret Wars tie-ins, Marvel Live, iZombie pilot, Arrow, and the best episode of The Flash yet! Starring Ryan Higgins, Jim Jokisch, Brock Sager, Toby Sidler, and Charlie West.
Running Time: 1h 13m 29s
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby Vyria » Mar 26th, 2015 @ 12:19pm

Master Higgins wrote:LISTEN TO THE LATEST EPISODE: The Comic Conspiracy — Episode 202 (2015-03-24)
This week, we discuss the Secret Wars tie-ins, Marvel Live, iZombie pilot, Arrow, and the best episode of The Flash yet! Starring Ryan Higgins, Jim Jokisch, Brock Sager, Toby Sidler, and Charlie West.
Running Time: 1h 13m 29s

I cannot agree about that Flash episode. I'm pretty excited about the Mark Mardon coming in as a badass version of the Weather Wizard, but less thrilled with the rest of the episode. Dragging out the Barry/Linda thing is pretty awful and the Wells stuff is even worse. I really wish they didn't previously have the subplot with Joe tipping his suspicions to Cisco. Cisco could have plausibly discovered the containment field trick on his own and had a much greater revelatory moment than they did with Joe having put doubt about Wells in his head. I also wasn't a huge fan of him creating the huge wind wall being some big climax, but I also dislike in the comics when any Flash situation in TV or comics is solved by his speed creating some kind of wind wall or vortex. Thankfully we got a reset at the end of the episode, but I haven't watched the new ep yet since I usually catch up on everything on Fridays.

The December episode of Flash was probably the most emotionally effective episode of superhero television (highlighting a glaring talent difference between it and Arrow,) but since returning from holiday break I've found it pretty meh. I don't like this version of Ronnie much so those episodes didn't do much for me. I LOVE the casting for Captain Cold and Heat Wave, but then Captain Cold's genius plan to defeat the Flash after cleverly luring him out is to stand in the middle of the street shooting weapons at him. A major step down Cold's cleverness in his first appearance and even compared to earlier in the episode. I'll watch Rogue Time later today, I hope it's less dumb.

While I've been "meh" on Flash, Arrow has been awful. The second half of this season has been as bad as the first half of season 1. The midseason cliffhanger was amazing, and I'm glad to have Nyssa around more, but since coming back the show has spent a lot of time focusing on characters I really dislike (Thea, Laurel, Roy) or just spinning it's wheels. I like Barrowman but Merlyn as a character has far outlived his usefulness and there's no reason he should still be alive thematically and I don't understand why Ollie wants to keep him alive narratively. The episode on the island was fun but was nakedly there to hype up Thea at the cost of making Deathstroke look like a chump. Going back and forth between Nanda Parbat was goofy and really pointless filler. Thankfully the last ep I watched did have some good stuff with Felicity and Ray finally hooking up, Ray completing the suit, and Ra's directly fucking with Ollie. That stuff moving forward and the fact the ep that aired last night is a Suicide Squad episode gives me hope the series will shape back up.

Also, I was as confused as Captain Lance by this:
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Re: The Comic Conspiracy Podcast Discussion Thread

Postby slinkdickens » Mar 28th, 2015 @ 12:29pm

This isn't really relative to anything, but I thought I'd share that USPS has Batman 75th anniversary stamps. They're pretty cool and don't cost extra. I actually bought them just because I need stamps to send a couple bills. Now that I have them, it seems like a shame to waste them on bills. I doubt they'll be worth anything as far as being a collectible (even if they double in value, we're talking $10), but they look so cool I don't know if I'll use them!

Here's a pic. I especially like the bat symbols.
Image

Direct link to USPS page for the Batman stamps.
http://tinyurl.com/mt8uv7n

Sorry if the community feels like this is spam. I'm honestly not trying to sell anything, just thought others might be interested.
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