Tag Archives: featured

Unboxing: Loot Crate Presents Marvel Gear + Goods “Beauty and the Beasts”

Loot Crate has a box for Marvel fans with the Loot Crate Presents Marvel Gear + Goods! You get official Marvel apparel, collectible goods every 2 months starting at $39.99.

This month’s box has a lot of items to help you re-assemble with the Avengers!

Supplies are limited order the next box now.
Use code “graphicpolicy” for a 20% discount.

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site.

Graphic Novels Suck!

Miles Morales: Spider-Man #1

One benefit of transitioning from the corporate world to the library world is that I get to work with and handle comics (or graphic novels as they like to call them.) on a daily basis. I mean I literally got paid to order and enter the ordering information for the first volume of Saladin Ahmed and Javier Garron’s Miles Morales: Spider-Man comic today and then at my other job at a public library, I got to show a couple of kids (whose first library card I made.) where the Pokemon “comics” were. It’s pretty awesome, but there’s a bittersweet lining to it too.

And that lining is that in the minds of many of the people I interact with at work, whether that’s colleagues or patrons, comics are still solely for kids. Yes, I know it’s a cliche, but it was corroborated by Eric Reynolds, the co-publisher of Fantagraphics in an interview with Ed Piskor and Jim Rugg of the Cartoonist Kayfabe podcast where he talked about how well comics by Dav Pilkey or Raina Telgemaier were selling, but how those sales don’t translate to the adult or even the YA market. Kids comics (and manga) are booming, but unless you’re already into the world of comics, or it’s something evergreen like Watchmen, Maus, or Fun Home, it seems like comics are not a viable reading material for, say, post-college age adults.

And I hate that I don’t feel empowered to recommend comics and graphic novels to adults at my work unless they’re already checking one out. For example, I told a patron who checked out Manhattan Projects to check out Jonathan Hickman’s recent X-Men work and that we would probably be ordering the complete hardcover in the winter. However, if a patron likes spy novels, I probably won’t recommend Ed Brubaker and Steve Epting’s Velvet or Antony Johnston and Sam Hart’s The Coldest City. I think a lot of this is how the graphic novels are shelved. (In the teens and kids section at one job, and hidden away on the 2nd floor at another.) But it might be a personal thing too.

In my mind as a comics critic/fan and librarian-in-training, I have two wolves inside me. One is out here trying to champion comics as either serious literature or something that can appeal to everyone like young adult dystopian novels, airport novels, or Oprah’s Book Club nonfiction. (She makes some pretty great choices.) Then, there’s another, admittedly bad, wolf that relishes in comics’ history and reputation as the “bastard child of art and commerce” and doesn’t give a shit if the people around me look down on the medium or see it as only fit for children and people, who need help learning how to read. (This is hilariously reductive because comics require both verbal and visual literacy to be understood.) I also enjoy having a little fun and saying things like the latest issue of Batman has more literary value than anything James Patterson and Tom Clancy. (It’s true, especially when Scott Snyder and Grant Morrison were writing the book.)

Batman "Enough"

What both wolves really like to come to blows over is the term “graphic novel”. The good wolf likes to emphasize it when talking to patrons because it reminds them of a currently respected medium. (The novel, which used to be seen as trash once upon a time.) The bad wolf likes to say that it’s a meaningless term, especially for trade paperbacks of ongoing series with multiple writers and artists. Both wolves agree that graphic non-fiction, memoirs, and medicine belong with their respective subjects and not with “graphic novels” because that makes so sense. Would you shelve a non-fiction book about anxiety next to J.D. Robb’s latest vapid thriller?

If I had my way, I would call anything that told a sequential story in both words and images a comic, plain and simple. However, graphic novel does have some marketing value even though some of the ways it’s used and overused are utterly banal. But, hey, if leads to a comic being checked out, I’ll use the word.

I have high hopes that as film and television shows of different genres that are comic book adaptations continue to be released, members of Generation Z keep reading comics even after their teachers and other adults say “They’re below their reading level” (This adds to their punk rock value, to be honest.), and cartoonists like Gene Luen Yang and Ed Piskor speak at prestigious book events (Aka they mainly focus on prose.) that comics will end up being just another item on the reading menu. Maybe, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will get elected president in 2024 and invite Alan Moore (He’ll probably decline.) and Dave Gibbons to chat Watchmen.

But, for now, I need to dig a little deeper and get better at recommending comics to people who aren’t children, teenagers, “geeks”, or fans of science fiction and fantasy. (I got a librarian at my work, who read Mort Weisinger-edited Superman books and 1960s Marvel comics as a child, seriously hooked on Saga.) I need to be a little less precious about semantics and use the term “graphic novel” as a tool for promotion instead of something that numbs my brain and makes me throw up in my mouth a little bit. I need to understand that some people might not have the visual literacy levels to read and enjoy comics, which is okay.

And my final takeaway is that I need to read more manga. Seriously, I went to a Barnes and Noble in the Louisville, Kentucky suburbs and there were four full rows of manga. Because of the prevalence of public transportation and the lack of a Comics Code incident leading to one genre taking over the industry due to censorship, manga of all genres is easy to obtain in Japan, and maybe it’ll be like that the United States. But, for now, it’s time to crack open Uzumaki by Junji Ito. (Once I knock off all the others on my “to be read” list).

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

The Amazing Mary Jane #1

Wednesdays are new comic book day! Each week hundreds of comics are released, and that can be pretty daunting to go over and choose what to buy. That’s where we come in!

Each week our contributors choose what they can’t wait to read this week or just sounds interesting. In other words, this is what we’re looking forward to and think you should be taking a look at!

Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this Wednesday.

The Amazing Mary Jane #1 (Marvel) – Mary Jane gets the spotlight as she heads to Hollywood to pursue her dreams. This series spins out of Amazing Spider-Man #25.

Bad Reception #3 (AfterShock) – It’s like an Agatha Christie novel as attendees of a wedding are killed one by one.

Black Canary Ignite (DC Comics) – DC’s Zoom titles have been fantastic and can be enjoyed by both kids and adults alike.

Criminal #9 (Image Comics) – One of the best comics on the shelf today. This is a must for everyone that enjoys crime comics.

Going to the Chapel #2 (Action Lab: Danger Zone) – Speaking of crime comics… This is a robbery gone wrong and has a great mix of humor and action along with some twists and turns.

Horde (AfterShock) – An original graphic novel that turns the issue of hoarding into a horror tale.

Immortal Hulk #25 (Marvel) – The previous issue of Hulk ended in a shocker and now the heat death of the universe has come and gone. The Ninth Cosmos cowers before the Breaker of Worlds!

Marauders #1 (Marvel) – The latest Dawn of X release focuses on Kate Pryde and her crew whose goal is to liberate mutants who can’t make it to Krakoa.

Money Shot #1 (Vault Comics) – Pornstars explore the universe and each other. Scientists having sex with aliens for the glory of mankind.

Open Borders (First Second) – A graphic novel exploring immigration and makes the case for opening all borders and unrestricted immigration.

Second Coming #4 (AHOY Comics) – An amazing series that both is a love letter to and skewers religion and its followers.

Super Sons Book 2 The Foxglove Mission (DC Comics) – The first volume was a lot of fun and solid storytelling for younger readers. This volume continues the adventure of Damian and Jon trying to find a sample of a deadly virus.

Review: Marauders #1

Dawn of X continues as Kitty, ahem, Kate Pryde leads a team to free mutants around the world who can’t get to Krakoa and it all kicks off in Marauders #1.

Story: Gerry Duggan
Art: Matteo Loli
Color: Federico Blee
Letterer: Cory Petit
Design: Tom Muller

Get your copy in comic shops tis week! To find a comic shop near you, visit www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

Amazon
TFAW

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site

Review: Marvel’s Spider-Man: City at War

The popular Sony Playstation game Marvel’s Spider-Man comes to comics in “City at War!”

The trade collects issues #1-6.

Story: Dennis “Hopeless” Hallum
Art: Michele Bandini, Luca Maresca
Color: David Curiel
Letterer: Travis Lanham

Get your copy in comic shops now and in bookstores on October 29! To find a comic shop near you, visit www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

Amazon
Kindle/comiXology
TFAW

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site

Review: Tales From the Dark Multiverse: Batman: Knightfall

DC takes you to the Dark Multiverse for twisted takes on some of its most iconic moments. Up first? Knightfall!

Story: Scott Snyder, Kyle Higgins
Art: Javier Fernandez
Color: Alex Guimarães
Letterer: Clayton Cowles

Get your copy in comic shops now! To find a comic shop near you, visit www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

Amazon
Kindle/comiXology
TFAW

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site

Watch Cong. John Lewis and Andrew Aydin Discuss March

On October 7, Congressman and civil rights activist John Lewis and co-author Andrew Aydin discussed their graphic novel March Book One as part of Vermont Humanities Council’s Vermont Reads choice for 2019.

The event is presented by the Vermont Humanities Council and sponsored by the University of Vermont and Middlebury College.

You can watch the presentation courtesy of Vermont PBS.

What Was the Tulsa Race Riot and Black Wall Street from Watchmen?

Tulsa Race Riot

HBO‘s Watchmen debuted with an unexpected, and somewhat shocking, real-world event the Tulsa Race Riot. The use of the despicable and little known moment in American history grounded the show in many ways and rooted it in the systemic racism that permeates today.

But what was the Tulsa Race Riot and Black Wall Street?

The Tulsa Race Riot is also known as the Tulsa Race Massacre, Greenwood Massacre, and Black Wall Street Massacre. The event took place on May 31 and June 1 in 1921 when mobs of white residents attacked black residents and businesses in the Greenwood District in Tulsa, Oklahoma. It’s considered the single worst incident of racial violence in American history. More than 800 people were admitted to hospitals, 36 were “officially” recorded as dead though that number was revised to between 100 and 300 in 2001. It also saw 6,000 black residents arrested and detained for several days.

The attack took place on the ground and by air destroying 35 square blocks in what was at the time the wealthiest black community in the United States, “Black Wall Street.”

Greenwood was a district that was organized in 1906 when segregation was common and enforced. Local black residents created their own thriving and prosperous community.

The riot began when 19-year-old Dick Rowland, a black shoeshiner, was accused of assaulting Sarah Page, a 17-year-old white girl. Rowland needed to use a local restroom and used the elevator Page was operating as the restroom was on the top floor which was restricted to black people. A clerk heard Page scream and saw a black man run from the building. The police were called thinking that Page was “assaulted.” At the time that word was often used to describe rape. No account or statement by Page as to what happened has been found. But, it’s accepted the police determined that what really happened wasn’t assault and Page didn’t want to press charges.

Rowland was arrested the day after the incident and while initially taken to one jail, he was transferred when a telephone call threatening his life was received by the police.

The Tulsa Tribune covered the story in their afternoon edition and ran an editorial warning of a potential lynching of Rowland. All of the original copies of the paper have since been destroyed and the microfilm of that issue is missing the relevant page concerning the column about lynching.

Several hundred white residents had assembled by the evening and the police feared the worst. And later, three white men entered the courthouse demanding Rowland be turned over.

The mob alarmed the black community though how to proceed divided them. A group of local black residents then arrived at the courthouse armed to support the sheriff. There’s conflicting reports as to whether the sheriff requested the help. This resulted in some of the white mob getting guns of their own. Tensions rose with shots being exchanged either by accident or intentionally. Ten white and two black individuals killed.

Mob violence was the rule as thousands of white residents attacked the black neighborhood on June 1st killing men and women, burning and looting stores and homes. Fires were set and bullets were fired into businesses and residences. There are conflicting reports that the mob fired upon firefighters when they arrived to put out the fires.

Watchmen depicted attacks from the air. White assailants were said to have dropped firebombs on buildings and fired guns from privately owned aircraft. Evidence though is flimsy when it comes to that and a commission later concluded it wasn’t reliable.

Martial law was declared and the National Guard was called in to restore order.

10,000 black residents were left homeless and property damage is estimated at $32 million in 2019 dollars. Many survivors left Tulsa.

No prosecution of any whites for actions committed during the riot took place.

The event was largely not mentioned in history books and classrooms and it wasn’t until 1996 that a bipartisan group was formed to investigate the events, interview survivors, and hear testimony from the public with the goal of preparing a report. That final report was published in 2001 and concluded that the city had conspired with the white mob to attack black citizens. It recommended reparations to survivors and descendants. Legislation was passed to establish scholarships for descendants of survivors, encourage the economic development of Greenwood, and the development of a memorial park to honor the victims.

Can Joker Hit a Billion While Endgame and Shazam See Life

Joker

Joker dipped to second place in its third week. It dropped just 48% which is a strong performance of an estimated $29.2 million domestically. It has now earned $247.2 million at the domestic box office. Internationally, the film added $77.8 million for a foreign total of $490.3 million. Worldwide, the film has earned $737.5 million. With such success over three weeks, the question is if the film will cross the coveted $1 billion mark.

The film rocketed up the rankings of worldwide earnings for comic adaptations. Joker now ranks #28 up from #44 last week. The movie is $8.1 million away from passing Suicide Squad and $10.3 million from X-Men: Days of Future Past. After this week, the film will likely rank about #21 on the chart. When it comes to the modern DCU, the film has passed Man of Steel, Justice League, and Shazam. When it comes to the return on budget, it ranks as the top film for DC by over a factor of 2 from the next highest.

Over the past week, Spider-Man: Far From Home earned an estimated $85,000 internationally. The movie’s domestic total now stands at $390.4 million domestically and $741.0 million internationally. Worldwide, the film has earned $1.132 billion.

The Kitchen is almost done with its run at the box office. The film earned an estimated $100,000 internationally. The film has fallen short of making back its budget showing when it came to this kitchen, folks chose to ate out.

Two films saw life which might be just an adjustment. Avengers: Endgame added $1.5 million to its international total. Shazam! added $100,000 to its international total as well.


Here’s where 2019’s comic films stand as far as the actual numbers.

Total Domestic Gross: $2.280 billion
Total International Gross: $4.708 billion
Worldwide Gross: $6.988 billion
Total Reported Budgets: $1.289 billion
Total “Profit”: $5.699 billion

Average Domestic Gross: $228 million
Average International Gross: $470.8 million
Average: Worldwide Gross: $698.8 million
Average Budget: $128.9 million
Average Profit: $569.9 million

Below is where the films released stand when it comes to being compared to this year’s averages. The bold numbers are above average while those below average are not.

FilmStudioDomestic Gross
Avengers: EndgameBV$858,373,000
Captain MarvelBV$426,829,839
Spider-Man: Far From HomeSony$390,495,270
Joker WB $247,229,004
Shazam!WB$140,371,656
Alita: Battle AngelFox$85,710,210
Dark PhoenixFox$65,845,974
Dragon Ball Super: BrolyFUNamation Films$30,712,119
HellboyLions$21,903,748
The KitchenWB$12,180,032
FilmStudioInternational Gross
Avengers: EndgameBV$1,939,427,564
Spider-Man: Far From HomeSony$741,039,769
Captain MarvelBV$701,444,955
Joker WB $490,300,000
Alita: Battle AngelFox$319,142,333
Shazam!WB$224,200,000
Dark PhoenixFox$186,597,000
Dragon Ball Super: BrolyFUNamation Films$83,390,702
HellboyLions$18,882,732
The KitchenWB$3,700,000
FilmStudioWorldwide Gross
Avengers: EndgameBV$2,797,800,564
Spider-Man: Far From Home Sony $1,131,535,039
Captain MarvelBV$1,128,274,794
Joker WB$737,529,004
Alita: Battle AngelFox$404,852,543
Shazam!WB$364,571,656
Dark PhoenixFox$252,442,974
Dragon Ball Super: BrolyFUNamation Films$114,102,821
HellboyLions$40,786,480
The KitchenWB$15,880,032
FilmStudioGross-Budget
Avengers: EndgameBV$2,441,800,564
Captain MarvelBV$976,274,794
Spider-Man: Far From HomeSony$971,535,039
JokerWB$682,529,004
Shazam!WB$264,571,656
Alita: Battle AngelFox$234,852,543
Dragon Ball Super: BrolyFUNamation Films$105,602,821
Dark PhoenixFox$52,442,974
HellboyLions-$9,213,520
The KitchenWB-$21,119,968
FilmStudioGross/Budget
Dragon Ball Super: BrolyFUNamation Films13.42
JokerWB13.41
Avengers: EndgameBV7.86
Spider-Man: Far From HomeSony7.07
Captain MarvelBV4.61
Shazam!WB3.65
Alita: Battle AngelFox2.38
Dark PhoenixFox1.26
HellboyLions0.82
The KitchenWB0.43

TV Review: The Walking Dead S10E3 Ghosts

The Walking Dead Season 10

The Walking Dead focuses on the characters and psychology in the third episode “Ghosts.”

The threat of the Whisperers return leads to paranoia sweeping over Alexandria; in the meantime, Carol battles with the need for revenge.

The episode is a focus on the slog of it all and the impact on the survivors. It opens with hours after hours as waves after waves of walkers attack a town and need to be repelled. Something is driving them and it’s unclear if it’s the Whisperers or not.

How does that impact individuals?

Carol, Aaron, Michonne, and Negan are all spotlighted as they struggle to deal with the situation. That includes interactions with the Whisperers and facing the threat that looms. Carol and Daryl have their moments as Carol’s mindset is explored especially after the death of her “son.”

Negan and Aaron are key too as Negan is tasked with helping Aaron. Has Negan changed and what of his past crimes? The tension is there and their back and forth are interesting. Aaron has lots of resentment towards Negan. Negan does come off as wanting to reform and leave his past behind. But, at the same time he’s not sorry. His words indicate that he sees it all as what needed to be done. It’s clear Negan will have his redemption in this season, the question is how and when.

The episode is a tense one as danger looms and the focus is squarely on the pressure of it all. It’s a good episode that revolves around the characters as the series always does. The Walking Dead isn’t about scares. It’s about the survivors and their dealing with this new world. The episode is important hinting at what’s to come and reminds us where the characters currently are.

Overall Rating: 8.05

« Older Entries