Friday, November 28, 2008

A Historical Overview of the "Archie Superheroes" Part One

I always liked the "Archie Suerheroes," and I was introduced to them via the Red Circle Comics relaunch of the very early 1980s before DC Comics did the revamp of the characters with !mpact Comics a few years later on. Some great characters by some of the great creators (Simon and Kirby just to name two), and it looks like DC is going to take another swing at publishing them. Should be interesting.
While a great deal has been written over the years about Archie Andrews and his pals the same cannot be said about Archie Comic Publications' superheroes. Few people seem to know that not only Archie Comic Publications get its start-under a different name mind you-in 1939-as a publisher of superhero comics but that it was one of the more innovative comics publishers in the industry. This article is an attempt to rectify that and while space limitations prevent me from going into a great amount of detail I hope that I can at least cover the more important points regarding Archie Comic Publications' superhero history.

Did You Know


Thursday, November 27, 2008

Who Killed Amanda Palmer?

This isn't a review.

I picked up the new CD (Who Killed Amanda Palmer?) by Amanda Palmer, the singer and primary songwriter for the band The Dresden Dolls. This was a great CD, musically very tight, and a pleasure to hear after the disappointment of the Dresden Dolls' last release Yes Virginia, which was to me a bit of a quality slip from their first release.

The Dresden Dolls are a great band, full of wild and creative energy, and this new release from Palmer shows how that energy and creativity thrives when brought under the focus of a really good producer. Who Killed Amanda Palmer? was produced by Ben Folds (of Ben Folds and the great 90s group The Ben Folds 5). I think that the best producers are those people who are themselves musicians because the understand how the process of being a musician and creating an album works, and in this case I think that Folds' contribution was to bring this wild creativity into a focus where it could really thrive and Palmer could create some of the best music of her career to date.

Frankly, this isn't a departure from the music of the Dresden Dolls. Which, for me, was a good thing because I like their music. If you don't like Palmer's work with them, you probably won't like this new CD either. No amount of producer's polish is going to change things that dramatically. But if you like good, strong, quirky songwriting with instrumentation of pianos, cellos, and a more cabaret sort of feel then I would suggest checking the CD (and the others by the Dresden Dolls) out.

This new CD does, however, raise the bar more than a bit for both Palmer and the Dresden Dolls now. I think that expectations for future music should be raised up as well. This is a good, solid CD and shows what she is capable of doing with a good set of musical tools.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

It's Been Five years

Because of real life, I missed the anniversary of this blog. Five years....who would have thought it? Here's to the next five years.
Pushing thru the market square, so many mothers sighing
News had just come over, we had five years left to cry in
News guy wept and told us, earth was really dying
Cried so much his face was wet, then I knew he was not lying
I heard telephones, opera house, favourite melodies
I saw boys, toys electric irons and t.v.s
My brain hurt like a warehouse, it had no room to spare
I had to cram so many things to store everything in there
And all the fat-skinny people, and all the tall-short people
And all the nobody people, and all the somebody people
I never thought Id need so many people

A girl my age went off her head, hit some tiny children
If the black hadnt a-pulled her off, I think she would have killed them
A soldier with a broken arm, fixed his stare to the wheels of a cadillac
A cop knelt and kissed the feet of a priest, and a queer threw up at the sight of that

I think I saw you in an ice-cream parlour, drinking milk shakes cold and long
Smiling and waving and looking so fine, dont think
You knew you were in this song
And it was cold and it rained so I felt like an actor
And I thought of ma and I wanted to get back there
Your face, your race, the way that you talk
I kiss you, youre beautiful, I want you to walk

Weve got five years, stuck on my eyes
Five years, what a surprise
Weve got five years, my brain hurts a lot
Five years, thats all weve got
Weve got five years, what a surprise
Five years, stuck on my eyes
Weve got five years, my brain hurts a lot
Five years, thats all weve got
Weve got five years, stuck on my eyes
Five years, what a surprise
Weve got five years, my brain hurts a lot
Five years, thats all weve got
Weve got five years, what a surprise
Weve got five years, stuck on my eyes
Weve got five years, my brain hurts a lot
Five years, thats all weve got
Five years
Five years
Five years
Five years

[lyrics of Five Years by David Bowie

Saturday, November 22, 2008

McDonald's sued over nude photos

A US couple is suing McDonald's for $3m after nude photos of the woman, which were on her husband's mobile phone, ended up on the internet.

Phillip Sherman says he accidentally left his phone, with the photos, at a McDonald's in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Scientists Say Copernicus' Remains Found

Researchers believe they have identified the remains of Nicolaus Copernicus by comparing DNA from a skeleton they have found with that of hair retrieved from one of the 16th-century astronomer's books.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

DC sends Superman into space and gives Batman his last rites


Dan DiDio of DC Comics talks about Superman leaving 'Action Comics' (and Earth), the revival of 'Adventure Comics' and major changes in Gotham City that will mean 'a close to the existing lore ... the last rites of Batman.'

Star Trek HD Trailer

I love the comments of people on this video. I like the look and hope that it revitalizes the franchise because it really needs it.


NEW Watchmen Trailer


WATCHMEN Trailer

Just so you remember.


Neil Gaiman Does Batman

DC has provided Newsarama with the covers to Batman #686 and Detective Comics #853, the covers to 'Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader?' by Neil Gaiman and Andy Kubert. Kubert provides variants for both issues - his sketch variant for Detective #853 is not shown, but is the pencil version of the displayed image. The two issues are due in stores in February.

300 RPG Text Files

That's right. I said *text* files. This looks back to the internet when there weren't GUIs, websites or search engines. Hell, sometimes you'd get an address for some great file on to to find out that it wasn't actually even there.

So, let's turn back the clock and see what there was out there.

[via Zachary's RPG Blog II]

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Social Media and the Dorkland Landscape

Yes, I am out there. In more ways than one.

Flckr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/chris_helton/
Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/seraphimchris
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/dorkland
Blip.fm: http://blip.fm/dorkland
Last.fm: http://www.last.fm/user/seraphimchris
Second Life: Walton Vieria

I'm also on Facebook but I am going to make you work for that one. I'm not as connected to things as some people are but I've still got a list. Come by and say hello if you'd like.

Edit: And since I received a request from someone, I joined Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/1729131

Monday, November 17, 2008

Actions Spoke Louder than Words: The Courage of Zoia Horn

As the first librarian to actually be jailed because of her beliefs in intellectual freedom, Zoia Horn is in an elite group among library workers. Horn recalled the events culminating in her 20-day stint in the Dauphin County Jail during her presentation, “From the Harrisburg Seven to the PATRIOT Act,” held in the Knight Library Browsing Room on Thursday, June 30. According to Horn, the FBI contacted her in January 1971. They were seeking evidence of a plot allegedly conceived by Philip Berrigan. Berrigan, a Catholic priest and anti-war activist, was serving a sentence in a nearby federal prison for burning draft files at the time. According to prosecutors, Berrigan (from his jail cell) and six others, known as the Harrisburg Seven, were planning to blow up heating tunnels beneath Washington, D.C., and to kidnap Henry Kissinger, President Richard Nixon's national security adviser.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

'I'm the Doctor': David Morrissey is hot favourite to be new Time Lord

A sneak preview of the Doctor Who Christmas special has increased speculation that David Morrissey will replace David Tennant in the coveted role of the Time Lord.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Deadworld and Renfield Signed By Framelight Productions

Film production executive Jeffrey D. Erb and entrepreneur Robert L. Robinson, Jr., both Philadelphia area businessmen, announced today that they have created a new film production shingle, Framelight Productions, LLC. Erb and Robinson, who partnered together in three previous companies, Xportical, Supply Marketing and Kindred Media Group, identified a niche in comic book films and joined forces to bring special titles to the silver screen.

Framelight plans to produce six to eight films over the next five years in the $20 to $100 million range, focusing on strong stories populated with powerful characters.

The first properties optioned by the company include 'Deadworld,' published by Caliber Press and Image Comics in association with Desperado Publishing, and created by Gary Reed; 'Renfield' published by Desperado and Image Comics and created by Gary Reed; '1001 Arabian Nights' and 'Sins Of The Fallen,' both published by Zenescope, 'Dr. Deth With Kip And Muffy,' published by Marvel Comics and created by Larry Hama; and one other soon to be announced.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Official blames loss on 'brainwashed' kids

Makes her sound like a "bad guy" from a Scooby Do cartoon...
A county treasurer who lost her bid for a fourth term last week to a 20-year-old Dartmouth College student from Montana blames her failed candidacy on 'brainwashed college kids.'

Monday, November 10, 2008

Topps Shuts Down WizKids

The Topps Company is announcing today that it is closing down WizKids, its core hobby gaming business, and temporarily discontinuing the WizKids product lines. Topps CEO Scott Silverstein commented, 'This was an extremely difficult decision. But in light of the current economic conditions, we feel it is necessary to align our gaming initiatives more closely with Topps current sports and entertainment offerings which are already being developed within our New York office.' WizKids is based in Seattle, Washington.

Zombie! Organize!! Robotacus Video



Oh, this video is highly NSFW due to language. Forewarned.

240 Free Albums, Tracks and Links for Music Mashup Lovers - AUDIOTUTS

A mashup is a piece of music formed by mixing elements of at least two existing songs together, usually by combining the acappella part of one song with the music track of another. If you're at all interested in sampling, or if you're curious about this fascinating and controversial musical genre, these 18 albums, around 200 tracks and extra bonus links should provide plenty of inspiration!

Unexplained with George Noory on the Sci-Fi channel

Bravely, Unexplained with George Noory, steps out of the light and into the darkness. From executive producers George Noory, Carol Sherman and Jeff Androsky of Natural 9 Entertainment, Unexplained explores the realm of paranormal phenomena, time travel, alien abductions, conspiracies and other facets of the unexplainable.

George Noory is the host of the radio program Coast to Coast AM. His show is the most listened to overnight radio program in North America, heard by nearly three million listeners each week on approximately 500 stations in the U.S. and Canada.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Mattel Layoffs

Mattel Inc. said Thursday it is cutting about 1,000 positions worldwide because of the economic downturn that is clouding the holiday outlook for toymakers.

Mattel, which makes Barbie, American Girl and Fisher Price products, among others, said the positions amount to three per cent of its worldwide workforce and will reduce its professional and management staff by eight per cent.

Friday, November 07, 2008

Blog@Newsarama: Alexz Johnson is Saturn Girl in Smallville

As a big Legion of Super-Heroes fan, this gets a big old W00t!! from me.
A fan site for Alexz Johnson has confirmed the Canadian pop singer and actress will play Saturn Girl in an upcoming episode of Smallville, written by Geoff Johns.

The episode, titled 'Legion,' also features Cosmic Boy and Lightning Lad. The three come from a future where Clark is the greatest hero.

Oh, and if you aren't already reading it, check out the Legion of 3 Worlds mini that is one of the Final Crisis tie-ins. Both Legion stories are scripted by Johns, who is a solid writer who puts in a good story.

Free Urban Fantasy Tale Written by Monica Valentinelli

Welcome to Book One of The Violet War urban fantasy series. Feel free to read, comment and provide feedback on anything you read here.

Book One is titled, Argentum. This title does carry some significance and weight to the overall theme of The Violet War series, which will be explored more as new chapters and pieces to this story are revealed.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Sorry About The Gap

Hello readers. Sorry about the gap in posting there, I had a sudden family emergency with my grandmother that required that I travel back to Indiana and take care of things with her. Unfortunately that meant no internet while I was gone (outside of crappy mobile internet) and no updating the blog but now I'm back.

Once I'm back in my head again the posting will start up like before.