Archive for December, 2011

Superman #3 review

Saturday, December 24th, 2011

While I liked the first two issues of Superman, this issue did not fully do it for me. I like what the writer is trying to accomplish but issue three seemed overly long and disjointed in places.

Issue three starts off with a colleague of Clark and Lois’ giving a presentation on Superman. He brings us the question of whether Superman is a friend or foe. The presentation to the reader is way too long. Not only that but it spoils a future issue of Action Comics. However, it does get better with Clark getting a call from Perry, his editor, about going to help Heather Kelley, a reporter, on her feature. He forgot, and races off. The scene then goes back to the Daily Planet. Lois and Perry duke it out, and Lois then gets to producing the news. The scene moves to Kelley out in the field. She is waiting for Clark but decides to start because she might freeze to death. Jimmy and Miko are wondering why she feels she might freeze to death when it is over 80 degrees outside. Superman then fights his villain. She is an ice monster who freezes the entire city. For some reason, Kelley is inside the monster. She is almost possessed by the ice monster. Superman has to make a decision to shoot her with his laser beams. It is a well-handled scene, and is interesting because it comes from the perspective of journalists. It is then revealed Kelley is either working with the same mysterious Kryptonian force from the previous issues or she is still possessed. I want more……

George Perez is doing an above average job on the writing. This certainly was not his best issue but still an above average one. Nicola Scott fills in the art duties, and does a usual fantastic job. She can pretty much capture any character, and tell a story through her great sequential art. This series continues to be doing good but I hope more issues are not overly long like this was.

MAIN STORY: B+

Paper Dragon Ink link: http://paperdragonink.com/?p=1587

Project Fanboy link: http://www.projectfanboy.com/2011/12/superman-3-review/

Super Powered Fiction: http://superpoweredfiction.com/2011/12/21/super-powered-comics-superman-3/

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Batman: The Dark Knight #3 review

Saturday, December 24th, 2011

I have been reading this book since the beginning of the New 52. Many people have not responded favorably to the storytelling style of the writers David Finch and Paul Jenkins. I think Batman: The Dark Knight is merely different from the other Batman books.

Issue three continues the blockbuster atmosphere of the previous books. It opens up with The Joker attacking Batman. They slug it out when The Joker reveals himself to be Clayface. This is a nice twist that works quite well. After Clayface is defeated, the spotlight turns to the mysterious White Rabbit. She continues to tempt Batman even more than previous issues. She almost injects him with the thing she injected in Clayface and Two-Face (in the first issue) but someone comes at the nick of time. That is Barry Allen/The Flash. He comes upon the heels of the White Rabbit’s escape. The story then moves to Lt. Forbes and Batman having another confrontation. They obviously do not care for each other but it is entertaining to watch how Bruce treats him. Next, we move to Jai, a woman he met at a party in issue one. Bruce suspects her of being the White Rabbit but Alfred alerts Bruce of the White Rabbit being sighted elsewhere. This puts Bruce’s thoughts to rest. Back at the cave, Bruce is analyzing the compound injected to Two-Face and Clayface. He then takes off when evidence leads to possibly involving Poison Ivy. Flash re-joins Batman until Barry gets poisoned by one of Ivy’s thorns. Bruce is left alone to fend against the nature goddess.

David Finch and Paul Jenkins have crafted a different book. It is more of a blockbuster, action-packed story-telling style which is fine if that is what you are looking for. David Finch also does a great job on the art. He continues to deliver dynamic art which continues to keep me excited for this book every week it comes out.

MAIN STORY: A-

Paper Dragon Ink link: http://paperdragonink.com/?p=1584

Project Fanboy link: http://www.projectfanboy.com/2011/12/batman-the-dark-knight-3/

Super Powered Fiction link: http://superpoweredfiction.com/2011/12/20/batman-the-dark-knight-3-review/

Latest Zimmertainment column from Project Fanboy

Saturday, December 24th, 2011

“The Dark Knight Rises Prologue Review”

“Thoughts on The Dark Knight Rises Prologue”

“The Dark Knight Rises Trailer #2”

“The Dark Knight Rises Trailer 2”

Every time I search on Youtube.com, all I find are these topics.

Fanboys seem to think they need to comment on everything that occurs.

When one trailer comes out, they seem to think they need to give their thoughts on it.

They feel as film fanboys they have something to offer to the conversation.

However, they really have nothing else to offer beyond the general thoughts that are in the community of fans.

The general ideas for the film are that John Blake and Miranda Tate are characters that have more mystery to them.

That was because they do not have comic histories to them, and that Nolan has given the name and description of a character while the character turns out to be something different.

However, that has not occurred a lot as many fanboys claim.

It only occurred in Nolan’s “Batman Begins,” where Henri Ducard (played by Liam Neeson) turned out to be Ra’s al Ghul.

Fanboys claim this has occurred across the board in every film Nolan has done.

Nolan is well-known for being a master of the thriller genre.

He can give you information, and reveal something that connects all the information shown.

However, I do not see the fanboys’ connection to saying that he reveals every character to be something different.

The only real possibility in “The Dark Knight Rises” is that Miranda Tate (played by Marion Cotillard) is really Talia al Ghul.

Joey King, the actress who portrays a young Talia al Ghul in the film’s flashbacks, looks identical to Cotillard.

This is has more information backing it up too.

Liam Neeson is reprising his role as Ra’s al Ghul in a cameo, and a young Ra’s al Ghul has been cast who will be played by Josh Pence.

The thought that John Blake is any more than a cop under Gordon’s tutelage is quite strange.

Beyond these sorts of thoughts, fanboys also offer their thoughts on the prologue and trailer.

I do not understand why they have to invoke their thoughts on Youtube.com.

It is quite annoying to the general searcher to find these sorts of people.

When I have tried to search for the trailer or prologue on Youtube.com, all I find are people’s opinions of it.

Let the people actually view the things rather than hear viewer’s opinions of it.

Beyond that, I have often found multiple uploads of the trailer.

Is it not enough to post it once or twice, and be done with it?

Apparently, every fanboy needs to have their posting of the trailer.

It makes no sense to a logical fanboy who is just trying to find a trailer or prologue, and he finds twelve different trailers and opinions of that trailer.

Leave the opinions for the blogs and columns.

Do not post idiotic fanboy outbursts on a site that could be used for better things.

Project Fanboy link: http://projectfanboy.com/2011/12/fanboy-comments-and-the-dark-knight-rises/

UDM economics professors see no quick recovery for nation’s troubles – The Varsity News – University of Detroit Mercy

Saturday, December 24th, 2011

http://platform.twitter.com/widgets/hub.1324331373.html

UDM economics professors see no quick recovery for nation’s troubles – The Varsity News – University of Detroit Mercy.

 

Robust growth may not be on the immediate horizon in the U.S., according to three UDM economics professors.

“We are doing no better than showing very slow growth,” said UDM Prof. Joseph Weglarz. “Many (economists) are predicting more of the same for the next couple of years.”

Prof. Bruce Brorby agrees.

“The current problem with the economy is that it is not growing fast enough,” he said. “It has been growing for the past year but at a slow rate of approximately 2 percent.”

How did the country reach this point?

“Over the past half-decade, our economy has had to weather or absorb an unrestrained legislative spending agenda endorsed by both major political parties that have racked up debt of around $14 trillion and counting,” Weglarz said.

Brorby said businesses are not ready to risk their capital.

“The traditional measures of ‘consumer confidence’ are low right now,” Brorby said. He said that it is difficult to determine how much of an effect that is having on consumer spending as retail sales and auto sales are increasing every year.

Both professors underscored the effect international problems have on domestic life.

“There is an extremely volatile securities market fueled by speculation and international crises, especially the most recent revelations of Greek and Italian debt,” Weglarz said.

Brorby concurs.

“The debt crisis in Europe has many in the financial community, including banks, worried about what would happen in the case of default by one or more countries,” Brorby said. “This probably leads to uncertainty and some reduction in lending.”

From here, the question comes: How does the country fix this?

“There is no simplistic answer to ‘what needs to be done?’ or ‘what has not been done?” said Prof. Raphael Shen, who is a Jesuit priest.

He said people can question what problems have led the country to this point, including the percentage of single-parent families, causes of school-dropout rates and incidents of violent crimes while contrasting those with previous American generations.

Weglarz said the debt must be addressed.

“Real cuts will have to be made to various government programs that have expanded in scope and reach,” he said. He cited a study done by economist Gary Shilling that pointed out that 52.6 percent of all Americans receive some form of income from government.

Weglarz said people must remember that the private sector creates jobs.

With a divided Congress, Weglarz sees something that would bring certainty to businesses.

“A revised and simplified tax code and regulatory environment that eliminates dead-weight costs would go a long way in allowing companies and corporations to plan and act wisely,” he said.

The three faculty members do not see politicians helping the economy.

“Since the lifeblood of each politician is the vote, each politician in a representative democracy like the United States listens most intently to organized special-interest groups,” Weglarz said. He said that politicians do this because they provide the politicians with campaign funds, vocal supporters and lobbying power in Washington and beyond.

Shen thinks it is more complicated than that.

“Self-interest has metamorphosed to extreme greed on nearly all fronts,” Shen said. He said that it is also apparent in CEOs and organized labor.

As a result, he sees the entrepreneurial spirit declining.

“The spirit, the drive and the readiness for self-sacrifice that once epitomized the forefathers’ attributes have been on the wane for decades,” Shen said.

As these problems come to the forefront, people begin to ask whether things will get better or not.

“The energy that once empowered the pioneers to propel this nation upward needs restoring,” Shen said. “Unless and until there is a renewal of spirit within, a rebirth of the bygone glory would be a page in the future history.”

Weglarz is more optimistic on the subject.

“If economic history is any indicator, despite various voices in many quarters that have proclaimed the ‘end of America,’ our economy will re-constitute itself and re-invent itself as it has done in the past,” Weglarz said. “The stagflation of the late 1970s provides us with a clear example of an American economy that finally flexed its muscles after a lengthy economic downturn by stimulating the supply side.”