Talon 6

talon 6

Today, Patrick and Drew are discussing Talon 6, originally released March 27th, 2013. 

Patrick: The Empire Strikes Back came out two years before I was even born. That means I never lived in a world where “No, Luke, I am your father” was a surprise. It’s not even like there was a specific moment that it was spoiled for me: these character relationships were communicated to me through osmosis. But shock-value be damned, I still think it’s a killer scene. The lightsaber fight, the screaming, the music — it’s a powerful conclusion to the best Star Wars movie, no matter how many times you see it. Whenever I encounter these Big Reveal scenes now, I always wonder how I’ll feel about them when the shock wears off. In case my musings don’t make it obvious: spoilers ahead. Continue reading

Talon 5

talon 5

Today, Shelby and Mikyzptlk are discussing Talon 5, originally released February 27th, 2013. 

Shelby: Anytime there’s some sort of big upheaval, you usually here the phrase “a return to normalcy” bandied about. When some serious shit goes down, we the people just want things to go back to the way they were before everything went wrong. Unfortunately, sometimes there’s just no going back, as proven by the history of the phrase itself; it was first used by Warren Harding in reference to World War I. Instead of the return to normalcy he was looking for, we got the Great Depression and World War II. So, what do you do when, try as you might, there’s just no going back to normalcy? Continue reading

Talon 4

talon 4

Today, Shelby and Patrick are discussing Talon 4, originally released January 30th, 2013. 

Shelby: Starting a new comic book has got to be a tricky affair. Your story, your character, could potentially end up part of cannon forever and ever; there’s a lot of pressure to get it right. As a creator, you have to balance between giving the book the time it needs to grow roots and keeping the readers interested long enough to have that kind of time. Take too long getting to the point of the book, you’re gonna lose your audience: slap something together, and you don’t have a character with any sticking power. With all that in mind, is it a problem for Scott Snyder and James Tynion that I’m still not sure where this book is going? More importantly, does it matter if I’m enjoying the ride? 

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Animal Man 16

animal man 16 ROT

Today, Patrick and Shelby are discussing Animal Man 16, originally released January 9th, 2013. This issue is part of the RotWorld crossover event. Click here for complete RotWorld coverage. 

Patrick: The End of the World. Pretty bleak subject matter, right? But we can go bleaker. Let’s kill as many superheroes as possible, and then use their grotesquely reanimated corpses to attack our protagonists. Also, no one’s safe, so those protagonists themselves can get picked off at a moment’s notice. Still not grim enough? Then let’s keep flashing back to the putrid death of our hero’s family. These are the principal building blocks of Rotworld. So if I’m using the adjectives “grim,” “grotesque” and “bleak” so much, why is this issue so much fun?

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Talon 3

talon 3

Today, Mikyzptlk and Drew are discussing Talon 3, originally released January 2, 2013. 

Mikyzptlk: Trust is both extremely hard to gain and to easy to lose. One can work for years to gain the trust of another simply to lose it all in a single encounter. The main characters of Talon, Calvin and Sebastian, have both been put in a position where they need to build trust between one another. In the world they live in, dealing with the enemies they deal with, that can be a very hard thing to do. It’s funny then that series writer James Tynion IV also finds himself in the position of building a trust with his audience. Getting new comic book characters to catch on with audiences is tough, especially considering all of the well-established characters that are out there. Convincing your audience that you have an interesting character with a story worth telling is essential for the success of  said characters. Even having Scott Snyder (who is, admittedly,  very hot right now) on board with a story credit doesn’t guarantee success, so it’s important that Tynion quickly builds trust with his audience and convinces them to stick around for the long haul. As for myself, I’m not sure if Tynion has convinced me quite yet, but this issue certainly goes in the right direction. 

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Talon 2

Today, Patrick and Drew are discussing Talon 2, originally released November 28th, 2012.

Patrick: We spend an awful lot of time on this site unpacking different histories: publishing histories, character histories, creator histories and the bizarre intersections between. Talon is uniquely positioned embrace as much real or imagined history as it possibly can, all with a plucky young hero at the center. But also at the center? A stuffy old man who thinks he knows better. But before it all gets too heady, let’s melt a room full of gold treasures!

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Batgirl Annual 1

Today, Shelby and Mikzyptlk are discussing the Batgirl Annual, originally released October 31st, 2012.

Shelby:  “The Bat, The Cat, and the Owl.” It sounds like some sort of nursery rhyme, but it’s actually the cast of the Batgirl Annual. Gail Simone has teamed up Batgirl with Catwoman and recently sprung lady-talon Mary. The result is a touching look at three very unique ladies: one unequivocally good, one (seemingly) unequivocally bad, and one who toes the line between the two. “But Shelby!” you cry, “Where’s the Joker? What about James, Jr. and Babs, Sr.?” It’s true, we don’t get any of that in this issue. While that does make the timing of this issue a little tricky, Simone delivers such a strong character piece with these three gals that I don’t mind in the least.
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Talon 1

Today, Shelby and Drew are discussing Talon 1, originally released October 24th, 2012.

Shelby: It’s not easy meeting someone for the first time. There’s a lot of business you have to get through before you can get to the really interesting stuff. All of the “where are you from? what do you do for a living? etc.,” stuff is boring and awkward, but it’s also necessary to establish base for the relationship. Even though this is really the second issue of Talon, we’re still firmly in the “getting to know you” camp. That means a lot of exposition, and while it doesn’t make for the most compelling reading experience, I find I’m really intrigued by what I’m learning about this new addition to the DCU.

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Chat Cave: Zero Month Reflection

The Retcon Punch editors want to extend a HUGE thank-you to everyone that helped cover all 55 Zero Issues released in the month of September. And an additional thank you to the new readers that have been enriching the conversations in our comment sections. We couldn’t have done it with out you – and really, without you, what would be the point?

In that spirit, let’s all reflect on Zero Month. What were some of your favorite Zero Issues? What were your least favorite? Did any of these issues serve as an effective entry-point for you? What trends did you notice? Are these kinds of line-wide events fun, or a pain in the ass? Welcome to the Chat Cave.

Chat Cave: Nemeses

In October, Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo’s Batman series will be reintroducing the Joker to the New 52 continuity, reigniting one of the greatest rivalries in comics history. But what does it mean for a hero to have a nemesis? Are nemeses important to the identity of a superhero? Who are the best nemeses? Welcome to the Chat Cave.

Shelby: A nemesis is an important character in a comic book. It’s an opportunity for stories to explore the dark side of our heroes. Very often, the nemesis represents the “flip side of the coin” of the hero; they are what the hero would be without the sense of morality and justice. The nemesis tests the hero to find his limits, and tries to push the hero past them. Also, the nemesis is an easy trick to pull out of the bag when you’re stuck for a plot.

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