The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl 8

squirrel girl 8

Today, Taylor and Patrick are discussing The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl 8, originally released August 12th, 2015.

Taylor: I recently watched a video of a man who walked, without any safety harness, across a rope suspended 1,000 feet in the air. It’s an impressive feat, if not in bravery, then at least in balance. One wrong move, too much weight to one side, and that guy becomes a smear on the ground. In this case balance is obviously important, but for me it highlights how balance is important in almost everything do. The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl 8 similarly reminds that balance is important in a different way. Keeping in perfect equilibrium the nuttiness of Squirrel Girl and the gravitas of Thor, this issue expertly walks a fine line between comedy and adventure. And while it might not be nearly as breathtaking as slack-lining, it’s every bit as impressive.

Continue reading

Phonogram: The Immaterial Girl 1

phonogram 1Today, Shane and Spencer are discussing Phonogram: The Immaterial Girl 1, originally released August 12th, 2015.

Shane: It’s entirely possible that I’m among the worst choices to review this comic. I haven’t bought a physical comic in years. That’s not to say that I haven’t purchased comics — after all, we live in a world that has embraced the digital age — but nothing in hard copy, and certainly not by single issue. And yet, on Wednesday I found myself headed to my first comic book shop in years (walking seventy blocks to get there like a madman), all to purchase a single four dollar comic. I bought this comic knowing that I was going to love it, and I’m hardly the only one to show this sort of devotion towards Phonogram: The Immaterial Girl — scores of fans have shown off tattoos, or traveled great distances to cons, or created fanzines, or gone to see Kieron Gillen DJ at a random show due to how well it ties into the Phonogram narrative. It’s not uncommon for media to evoke such passion, of course…but consider, if you will, that prior to this week, Phonogram existed soley as two poorly selling limited series by creators who were, at that time, almost entirely unknown. This wasn’t even the work that built their careers — Gillen and Jamie McKelvie remained struggling artists until their breakout work at Marvel Comics — but it wouldn’t surprise me if this series, more than even Young Avengers and The Wicked + The Divine, will be the comic they’re most linked to in the long run. Continue reading

Secret Wars Round-Up: Issues released 8/11/15

secret wars roundup13Retcon Punch is on Summer Hours, which means we’re going to be writing fewer in-depth pieces for the month of August. But we’re addicts at this point, so we need a place for our thoughts on all those comics we can’t stop reading. Today, we’re discussing Secret Wars 5, A-Force 3, Ghost Racers 3, Inhumans Attilan Rising 4, Mrs. Deadpool and the Howling Commandos 3, Planet Hulk 4, Secret Wars Battleworld 4, Star-Lord and Kitty Pryde 2, and Years of Future Past 4.

secret wars div

Continue reading

Batman 43

batman 43

Today, Drew and Michael are discussing Batman 43, originally released August 12th, 2015.

It seems like so many of these interpretations [of Batman] are somebody’s favorite. And the truth be told is that they all feel like it’s the same character. Regardless of how different they might be or how separate they might feel, they all feel like they’re Batman. They all feel true to the core conceit of what that character is.

Dan DiDio

Drew: As diverse as Batman stories can be, they’ve always shared some core tenants of who the character is and what he stands for. Or, maybe we need to be more specific — there have been a few different Batmen over the years, with some variation in guiding principles (and origin stories), but Bruce Wayne has always stood for the same things. Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo’s run on this series has been a slow indictment of each of those guiding principles, from Batman’s relationship to Gotham to exactly where he falls on the “superstitious and cowardly” spectrum, but this issue takes away something even more central to Bruce than all of these things combined: his drive as a detective. Indeed, that seems to be the linchpin that makes Bruce Batman — without it, he’s almost unrecognizable. Continue reading

Mad Max: Fury Road: Mad Max 2

mad max 2

Today, Mark and Drew are discussing Mad Max: Fury Road: Mad Max 2, originally released August 5th, 2015.

Mark: One of my favorite things about Max Rockatanksy is that despite being crazy he’s an incredibly pure hero. There’s a trend in pop culture that seems to be sunsetting where every hero was an anti-hero. Yes we were rooting for them, but in the context of the real world we wouldn’t have been. But as interesting as anti-heroes can be, it’s hard to beat a straight-up hero. Indiana Jones is a scoundrel, yes, but he only wants to do the right thing. Ethan Hunt is blowing up in movie theaters right now in a fifth Mission: Impossible film. Max is the same way: yes, he has flaws but his motives are incredibly true. There’s something fundamentally appealing about these characters in a way anti-heroes can’t compete. Continue reading

Weekly Round-Up: Comics Released 8/4/15

round up

Retcon Punch is on Summer Hours, which means we’re going to be writing fewer in-depth pieces for the month of August. But we’re addicts at this point, so we need a place for our thoughts on all those comics we can’t stop reading. Some comics fall neatly in the the categories “DC” or “Secret Wars” — these comics don’t! Today, we’re discussing We Stand On Guard 2, Groot 3, The Fade Out 8, The Wicked + The Divine 13, and Outcast 11.

slim-banner4

Continue reading

Secret Wars Round-Up: Issues released 8/4/15

secret wars roundup12

Retcon Punch is on Summer Hours, which means we’re going to be writing fewer in-depth pieces for the month of August. But we’re addicts at this point, so we need a place for our thoughts on all those comics we can’t stop reading. Today, we’re discussing Ms. Marvel 17, Amazing Spider-Man Renew Your Vows 3, Civil War 2, Infinity Gauntlet 3, Giant Sized Little Marvel AvX 3, and Red Skull 2

secret wars div

Continue reading

Darth Vader 8

darth vader 8

Today, Michael and Patrick are discussing Darth Vader, originally released August 5th, 2015.

star wars div

Michael: At my old age of 27, I must admit that I have gotten a little curmudgeonly – especially where pop culture is concerned. I’ve seen so many different iterations of ideas and tropes that sometimes it’s hard to tell if something is cliché or if I’ve just put myself in a position to see the same story 10 billion times. Darth Vader 8 took all of my predictions and suppositions and knocked them flat on their ass. And this pleases me. Continue reading

DC Round-Up Comics Released 8/4/15

dc roundup4

Retcon Punch is on Summer Hours, which means we’re going to be writing fewer in-depth pieces for the month of August. But we’re addicts at this point, so we need a place for our thoughts on all those comics we can’t stop reading. Today, we’re discussing Midnighter 3, Detective Comics 43, Batman Beyond 3 and Green Lantern 43.

slim-banner4

Continue reading

Summer Hours 2015

summer hours

Howdy everyone! Your old pals at Retcon Punch are going to seek a little R&R for the month of August. Some of us have travel on the calendar, some of us are taking on new projects, and some of us need time to reflect on how the waning of the summer sun reminds us of our slow inevitable descent to a slow, cold, meaningless death.

But hey! That doesn’t mean we’re going away entirely! In fact, I still hope to publish 2-3 Alternating Currents a week and we’ll still be weighing in on the new direction of the DCU (please, don’t make me use “DCYou”) and Secret Wars in the form of our now-familiar Round Ups. Beyond that, there will also always be a sort of catch-all Round Up to discuss indie books, Vertigo, Star Wars, or whatever Marvel stuff doesn’t yet fall under the banner of “Secret Wars.”

So I hope you’ll stick with us and put your own two cents in the comments. I expect we’ll still be expressing quite a few contestable opinions, and nothing brings me more joy that watching those contests play out on the site. Plus, we’ll be back in the Fall, and all of this will look a little bit fresher. On behalf of Drew, Spencer, Michael, Taylor, Ryan, Mark, Shane, Shelby and myself, have a great Summer y’all!

Patrick, Co-Editor-In-Chief