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News & Events for C. Dennis Moore

This Week's Comics Haul, 5/20/15

Posted 5/20/2015

New comic book day! And what a haul it was.  My son got 2, my daughter got 1, but since she still hasn't brought the new issue of Wytches in to me yet, even though she read it as soon as we got home, we'll just consider that her's as well, so I guess she got 2 also (she also got the latest issue of HORROR HOUND because it's got a ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW retrospective inside).  I got 13!  Here's the haul:

   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

    

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

    

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

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Comic-Talk Monday: Same Old Same Old Avengers

Posted 5/18/2015

 Know what the problem is with the success of Marvel movies, especially THE AVENGERS?  It's that, the more money the movies make, the more those movies affect the events in the comic books.  For example, the Avengers roster contains dozens of heroes, so the team could consist of any variation of characters, but the movies only have, what, six members?  Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Hulk, Black Widow and Hawkeye.  So around the time the first movie came out, Marvel started publishing a new title, AVENGERS ASSEMBLE.  The team consisted of those six members.  No big deal.  I read the first two issues and they were pretty good.

But as the release date for the new movie AVENGERS: Age of Ultron, neared, they published a series of limited series and one-shots.  There was AVENGERS VS., AVENGERS: Operation Hydra, and AVENGERS MILLENNIUM.  Want to take a crack at who the main Avengers were?

Iron Man.  Captain America.  Thor.  Hulk.  Black Widow.  Hawkeye.  And Falcon, as anyone whose seen the new movie can tell you, is most likely going to have a larger role in the upcoming Marvel movies.  No problem, I like Falcon.  But where's Tigra?  Where's Beast?  Where's Doctor Druid?  Where's Black Knight?  Okay, these aren't current active members, but not all of these stories were current present day stories.  One of the AVENGERS VS. stories took place around the time Falcon was new to the team and Iron Man wasn't sure about him yet.

Personally, I think publishing a lot of jumping-on points for new readers is a smart move around the time the movie is coming out, but why not get those new readers acclimated to some of the members they haven't met already?  Where's Black Panther?  His movie is coming up, let's see him in some of these stories.  How about Ms. Marvel?  Her movie is coming up, too, in a few years.  Wonder Man?  Hercules?  Mantis?  She Hulk?

I'm an Avengers fan, and have been for decades.  I want to read every Avengers story ever published, but come on!  One of the best things about this group is the diversity.  Let's see some of that in the recent comics!

Sure, the Operation Hydra book breaks up the monotony, but that's because the story itself is only half the book, while the rest of the book is a reprint from Avengers #16 when Hawkey, Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver joined the team.  You know, the other two new characters in the movie.  Yawn.  What a wasted opportunity, Marvel.

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Writing Update and Currently Reading:

Posted 5/16/2015

Just a quick writing update, since I haven't done one in a while.  On Thursday, I finished the first draft of my May publication, a new Angel Hill short, "Woolly Muffler."  It's close to 7000 words in first, but will get a little shorter when I start editing next week.  I spent part of this morning mocking up some cover ideas.  I like the direction it's heading.  I've NO idea, yet, what my June story will be, which means, for now, it might just be either THE NIGHT or THE KINGDOM, one of the two novellas I wrote last year and never completed, which will give me time to think of the next new story for July.  Then again, it's entirely possible I'll think of a new story tonight at work and that will be the June publication.  Who knows?  For now all I know for sure is that my May story is done.

A new audiobook became available on Audible.com yesterday, read by Winston Strobridge:

"The end isn't nigh. It's here. When Stacy wakes up one morning after a pretty bad night of drinking, she wonders where her husband and son have gone. Then she wonders where her neighbors have gone. Then the rest of the town. She wanders into the street, trying desperately to find someone, anyone. When she finally hears a voice calling for her, the story it tells chills her, confuses her, and leaves Stacy questioning everything.

Randy, the teenage former stock boy, says that everyone's gone. They were taken in the night when Jesus came down from Heaven and took away the righteous and the believers. Why wasn't she taken, Stacy wonders, and how can she be expected to go on living in an empty world knowing she'll never see her husband or son again?

Fans of horror author C. Dennis Moore's dark fantasy novel Revelations are familiar the author's take on the end of the world, but with Aftermath the rules are changed. This all-new look will leave listeners wondering how much more Stacy and company could possibly face in this new, uncertain world. Aftermath raises many questions of faith and fate, then answers those questions in some very unexpected ways.

Just because it's the end of the world, it doesn't mean God is done with us. But are the lost, forgotten, and damned up to the challenge?"

Yesterday I started, and am still reading:

Violent Cases marks the beginning of many astonishing and award-winning collaborations between author Neil Gaiman and artist Dave McKean. It is now offered in a hardcover format with an expanded art section and introductions by Alan Moore, Paul Gravett, and Neil Gaiman!

A narrator remembers his childhood encounters with an old osteopath who claims to have treated Al Capone. Gradually, the England of the 1960s and the Chicago of the 1920s begin to merge into a beautifully drawn and hauntingly written tale of memory and evil.

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Movie-Talk Friday: Return to the $1.99 bin.

Posted 5/15/2015

 Another good haul of used DVDs, each for only $1.99.  This time I got the classic Exorcist III, a movie I was not impressed with the first time I saw it, but over the years I've seen it on so many peoples' favorite horror movie lists that I had to give it another shot.  And at only $1.99, come on.

Then there's THE OMEN.  I bought the remake of this a while back and did not review it favorably.  I'm not even all that interested in watching the original again, but since in my last haul I got parts 2-4, I figured for only $2, I might as well complete the set.

Then there's THE EXORCIST CHRONICLES.  I have no idea what this movie is or what it's about, but I do like a good demon possession story, so hopefully it won't disappoint too much.

I also picked up HIGHLANDER: The Immortal Edition.  I haven't seen this movie is FOR! EVER!  But, again, for $1.99, how can you say no?

SEPTIC MAN was one I saw, but skipped initially, until a few days later I saw it included in a list of "most disturbing movie scenes" or either all time or the last year, I don't remember which.  And that particular scene included on the list was pretty gross, but very intriguing, so I went back for the DVD.

And finally there's EXTRACTED.  I don't know much about this one, either, except I heard it reviewed on the BLOODY GOOD HORROR podcast not too long ago.  I don't remember if they liked it or not, but I figured if it was worthy enough of a podcast spotlight, it was worth $2 to buy it.

And now the hard part: finding the time to watch any of these!

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This Week's Comics Haul 2/13/15

Posted 5/13/2015

Once again, it is Wednesday, better known in this house as "new comic day."  Got 10 today, even though according to Comixology it should have been 11.  The new issue of Doctor Who wasn't on the racks.  Hopefully next week.  For now, my son got 2 and I got 8:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

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Movie-Talk Friday: Two Most Recent.

Posted 5/8/2015

For Movie-Talk Friday, I'll go over some movies I've seen recently and give my thoughts.

First, I had this movie on my DVR, the other night after everyone went to bed, I watched it while I folded laundry:

 This is about a group of friends of rent a cabin for the weekend only to have the whole thing end in death.  As happens when a group of friends rent cabins for a weekend of partying.  But what attracted me to this one was, in the synopsis on TV, it said time runs backward in an abandoned mine they find nearby.

I love a good timey-wimey story, so hells yeah.

The problem was, that laundry I was folding kind of distracted me and I missed some pretty important details in the beginning of the movie.  By the time I was fully invested, I was also slightly confused.  I had to watch the first 20 minutes again the next day before the thing really coalesced into a coherent whole for me.  But coalesce it did and I would gladly recommend this one.

Hell, maybe it was designed to be viewed twice.  I know I felt like I probably enjoyed it more the second time around, having seen what came after.

 

 

 

Next up, the movie of the summer and it's not even summer yet but so what.  On Sunday we took the kids to see:

 Do we even need to say this was as good as the first one?  Better?  I don't know, that first one was pretty damn spectacular.  And this one follows suit quite well.  Every frame of this movie leaves you craving me, up to and including that very last moment that left many in the audience saying, "What?  No, SAY IT!!!"  You'll understand when you see it.

The way these Marvel movies all play into each other and the comic book easter eggs they drop are amazingly sly and made me smile every time.

There aren't words for how good this movie was and if you don't see it in theaters, on a big screen, then you hate yourself and I feel sorry for you.

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This Week's Comics Haul--and some Free Comic Book Day books, too.

Posted 5/6/2015

This was a pretty modest haul with only 8 new comics purchased.  My son and daughter both got 1 each, and I got the other 6.  Some of these close the Convergence gaps so I can read a few of those titles finally:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And I forgot to mention earlier, but last Saturday was FREE COMIC BOOK DAY.  I didn't pick up as much as I'd anticipated, but I did get some great deals on stuff I had been wanting for a while, especially the Thor collection.  I'm a huge Walt Simonson fan and his work there is stellar.  As for the free books, I got 2 and the kids each got 1:

   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

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Comic-Talk Monday: Avengers #32

Posted 5/4/2015

 Today, for Comic-Talk Monday, I want to discuss one of the best books I’ve read in a long time. I’m a big Avengers fan. And who wouldn’t be? And when I started collecting again, and saw Brian Michael Bendis was no longer writing Avengers, but this new guy I’d never heard of, Jonathan Hickman, I was a little disappointed. But Hickman quickly more than proved himself up to the challenge by churning out some of the best damn comic stories I’ve read in decades. And for me, one of the best of those was Avengers #32.

In the story up to that point, “Recently, Captain America and the clandestine Illuminati tried using the Infinity Gauntlet to prevent a series of alternate earths from colliding with our own. The plan worked once, but all the gems were destroyed--except for the time gem, which disappeared…”

Then Cap discovers the Illuminati are building a machine to destroy worlds in an effort to save their own. Not to be used, but “just because you might need it. And then slowly, one by one, you’ll convince yourselves. I won’t allow this to happen,” Cap says.

“Dammit, Steve,” Iron Man says. “Why do you always have to be this way? Wipe his mind, Strange.”

But before the sorcerer can follow through, the time gem reappears and flings the Avengers forward in time, first 48 years, then 422 years, then, in issue #32, 5045 years.

The ones left at this point are Captain America, Black Widow, and Star Brand. They find themselves in a garden, dominated by a huge tree. Then a figure appears and tells them the garden is “much more than that.”

The figure says it’s good to see them again, but Cap says he doesn’t know who the figure is. The man claims to be Franklin Richards, son of Reed and Sue Richards of the Fantastic Four.

“That’s not possible,” Black Widow says.

“Once,” Franklin replies, “Natasha, when you were over and no one was paying attention, you arranged my toys by ‘usefulness.’ You told me, if necessary, I could grind up any red or orange crayon, mix it with handsoap and make a low-yield poison. And you said my jump rope…”

“…Was an instrument most excellent for choking,” the Black Widow concludes.

Having convinced the Avengers, Franklin reveals one more thing. The garden is more than just a garden. “It’s a ship.”

He takes them to space where he shows them what mankind has achieved when not bound by the earth. He shows them humans mining gas giants in far space and explains how deuterium and helium-3 are “the lifeblood of the human-android fusion economy.”

When Natasha inquires as to who won the race to colonize space, Franklin says, “The idea of nation states died a long time ago, Natasha…as did the outdated notions of binary ideologies and the market as a motivational factor. Ask yourself…if not constrained by fictional boundaries, scarcity, or artificial differences…what exactly is it that keeps man from achieving all that he dreams? Nothing. In this time, more people live in the outer colonies of our solar system than earth itself. Almost 30 billion. So, now…space, and soon, beyond that.”

Finally, Franklin and Cap get to the heart of the matter. Cap says he wants to know about Tony and Reed and Franklin asks, “You want to know if they’re right?” To which Cap replies, “I want to know how to stop them.’

Franklin shows Cap something incredible; a huge structure that dwarfs any planet. Avengers World.

“The Utopian super planet is hub-home to billions of universal super beings from this world, the Avengers universe is kept hyper dynamically stable by its guardians. The remnants of your Avengers machine--aligned with the imperial academy, the united universal houses of the inhumans, and the atemporal architects of SHIELD--cast a wide net from Avengers world…protecting and policing the known universes. Look! Even now, the world’s mechatypes have captured a rogue planet and are preparing to hurl it backwards through space and time to fulfill the frontend of a closed-action loop.”

“My God,” Cap says. “That’s the planet we stopped from colliding with earth in the past…isn’t it?” Then Cap asks again how to stop the Illuminati.

“You can’t,” Franklin says.

“There must be a way. I need you to tell me what it is.”

“I want you to listen closely, Captain…You have to stop thinking of time as some celestial game of cause and effect. Much like society is an organism composed of humans, and the universe is one composed of societies…space-time is an organism made up of universes. It exists and evolves just like we do--like any living thing does--in response to our environment. Time’s not some linear unit of measurement that’s held captive by our perception of it. It just isn’t.

“The incursions--the collisions of universes with other universes--will continue. This will not be stopped. The early end of everything is going to happen. Everything will die. The Illuminati--Iron Man, Black Panther…my father…will continue to try and prevent them…but they will fail. They will fail because their cause is impossible. They will fail because they are not the only agents of the end times out there. And they will fail because they are opposed…by you! Ponder this, Captain: how do you think it will feel…killing your own brothers?

“Your fate is your fate because time and choice are the same thing. You are who you are.”

Natasha interrupts with a request from a past version of herself they met in their previous stop, but when Cap tries to get back on track, Franklin tells him, “I’m sorry, Cap…No. We’re out of time.”

Cap tries to ask, “What?” but before he knows it, the time gem grabs them once more and flings then further forward, leaving Franklin alone in the garden. He stands under the tree and says, presumably to himself, “Do you think he heard what I was trying to tell him?” when, from the tree, we hear, “I am Groot,” to which Franklin replies, “Yeah. Me neither.” And it’s a wonderfully rendered moment by artists Leinil Francis Yu on pencils with Gerry Alanguilan inking and Sunny Gho’s colors adding atmosphere and depth.

We end on a final full page panel of the next stop, 51,028 years in the future, leaving the reader breathless with anticipation and unsure how to handle the next 4 weeks before the new issue comes out. And this is why Jonathan Hickman is, in my opinion, the best writer The Avengers has had in years, if not decades. He captures a feeling of isolation and helplessness like no one I’ve ever seen before, and his story just keeps getting better and better every issue. But for me, this issue was the single best of the series, with a previous issue coming in a VERY close second, and I hope to talk about that one later. For now, I can only say if you don’t read comics or if you do but you don’t read Avengers, then you’re missing out and you need to get to a comic shop, or just go to comixology.com (click here to get this particular issue) and get the digital issues. Now’s a good time as the Avengers titles are cancelled until the upcoming Secret Wars storyline is over, so you can read this story and catch up to the point of the last issue before the title is restarted later this summer.

That’s all for now.

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Movie-Talk Friday: Massive Haul

Posted 5/1/2015

 Now I didn't get all of these at once, but over the course of a few weeks.  But this is my recent DVD haul.  And it's glorious.  First up, the complete original FLASH series on DVD.  With how amazing the new series is, and considering I missed a few of those old episodes, I couldn't pass it up.  Next an 11-movie collection of Gamera films.  A must-have for any fan of the genre, and considering my Godzilla haul from last year, it was a no-brainer.

EXISTS is a found-footage movie about Bigfoot I heard mention on the Bloody Good Horror podcast and when I found a cheap copy, I grabbed it.

At my local Hastings, on New Comic Days the past few weeks, they don't have the comics out right away, so I find myself wandering the store, perusing other things while I wait, and one of the things I've liked to start going through is their $1.99 DVD bin, which is where I got this next section, DR. STRANGELOVE, GRACE, PONTYPOOL, AMITYVILLE: a New Generaton, LORD OF ILLUSIONS and HOUSE OF THE DEVIL.  GRACE, PONTYPOOL and HOUSE OF THE DEVIL I already know are great movies.  I haven't seen the Amityville one yet, but I expect it to suck.  And I already know I'm not thrilled with LORD OF ILLUSIONS but it's Clive Barker so why the hell not.

That next DVD is a 4-pack with both DESCENT movies plus the first two CABIN FEVERS.  I loathed both CABIN FEVERS and I've already seen THE DESCENT.  I bought this set because I want to see the sequel.  THE BABADOOK is another horror movie that's getting a lot of podcast buzz and while it is on Netflix, I just wanted to own it.

Next up are the 2nd, 3rd and 4th movies in the OMEN series.  Seen up, but it's been years for all of them, and they were only $1.99 each as well. In fact, everything in that picture from DAMIEN: The Omen 2 to RED CLOVER (in other words, all of the ones still in their "used" wrapping") were only $1.99.  That includes yet another copy of the wonderful BUTTERFLY (a movie I now own three copies of because it's that good), the Famke Janssen movie 100 FEET, plus a run of After Dark Originals: HUSK, SECONDS APART, CHILDREN OF SORROW, and RED CLOVER.  I haven't seen any of these, but I do own all of the original After Dark 8 Films to Die For movies, so I wanted to add these to the collection.

And last but not least, a movie I saw in theaters last year and wasn't too impressed with, but it wasn't terrible and I found it for $5, so, THE QUIET ONES with Olivia Cooke from "Bates Motel" on TV.

That is quite the haul, and I can't guarantee I'll get to ANY of them soon, but come on, $1.99???  You can't pass that up.

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Music-Talk Thursday: Recent Hendrix Haul

Posted 4/30/2015

It's Music-Talk Thursday, so here's a look at my most recent purchases.  No, I'm not sure why, other than to say I didn't have them yet.  I had Live at Monterey digitally, but when I tried to find the physical CD, I couldn't.  So I found a cheap copy and bought it.  Jimi live CDs are always interesting, so they're sort of a no-brainer.  The two "studio" albums, however... I'm not sure why I bought them, honestly.  I mean, how many times can you have "Dolly Dagger", which both of these albums, THE CRY OF LOVE and RAINBOW BRIDGE, have?  But still, it seemed like the thing to do at the time.  The one I'm most interested in is the Curtis Knight and the Squires album.  Apparently Jimi played guitar on this one, all the while telling the makers of it, "You can't use my name on this album."  So of course they used his name.  And who wouldn't?  Still haven't listened to it all the way through, but what I did hear, that's obviously Jimi, or someone trying to sound like him, playing guitar.  Yes, I've been on a Jimi kick recently.  Who can blame me?  He's Jimi friggin' Hendrix!

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