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Re: Comic Books

Postby LantisEscudo » Sat Nov 13, 2010 9:42 pm

Annoyingly, most of the prerequisites for Rebirth are the gigantic crossover events, which are pretty continuity-heavy themselves. Hal Jordan's fall really starts in Death of Superman and continues through Emerald Twilight. The next big piece is the gigantic universe reboot of Zero Hour, though I'm not sure how necessary it is for your understanding. Then comes The Final Night and Day of Judgment, though I skipped Day entirely, it's enough to know that Jordan becomes the Spectre.
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Re: Comic Books

Postby Brad » Sat Nov 13, 2010 11:23 pm

Well I just watched the animated film Green Lantern: First Flight (which was, awesome). I'm going to go ahead and assume that as far as continuity is concerned, it doesn't exactly fit nicely anywhere in the canon universe. But it did give me a fairly decent overview of the guardians, the lantern, etc. Unless that was all just useless knowledge when compared to the comic-verse.

I'm starting to wonder if stories like this are purely made for comic book fans alone, and not really for new readers.

EDIT: I just found this article. Can any of you vouch for it's validity?
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Re: Comic Books

Postby dwchang » Sun Nov 14, 2010 4:48 am

Brad wrote:World of Warcraft Vol. 1-2 (Yes, I do play WoW and am interested in the lore)


Nothing to be embarrassed about. I actually love the Warcraft Universe as well and it irked me that they continued the story of War3 in an MMO since I wanted to know what happened, but didn't want to get absorbed into an MMO.

Brad wrote:All 3 Batman books were really awesome. Dark Knight Returns is soooo dense. Took longer to read than probably any other (comic) book I've read thus far. But yeah, I was really happy with them.


I think you will really enjoy The Long Halloween and Dark Victory then. They take place in the same "universe" as Year One.

Brad wrote: The JLA JSA book was entertaining, but unfortunately I was fairly lost for a lot of it, since it has a huge number of characters that I really had zero familiarity with. I got it because Challengers is hosting "book club" style discussion night for it next week so they were selling it for 20% off, and it looked interesting.


Yeah I had a feeling that was going to happen. The JSA isn't really "top tier" to most casual fans (that's the JLA after all...you can think of the JLA as the Avengers in the Marvel U). However, Geoff Johns (same writer for GL) did a great run of JSA. I, like you, didn't really know much of the JSA, but after a two or three year run, I enjoyed it quite a bit and learned to like characters like Stargirl, Power Girl, Green Lantern (Alan Scott), Flash, etc. The book you read is a good one, but it's hard to follow if you don't know these characters.


Brad wrote:I'm probably gonna read the Green Lantern books first to give myself a break from Batman. I'm definitely interested in the X-Men series but I kind of want more volumes of it before I start just in case I really get into it.


Good idea. Hopefully Whedon's X-Men run will interest you enough and it'd suck to not have the subsequent issues.

Anyway I'll reply to your GL question in a separate post...
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Re: Comic Books

Postby dwchang » Sun Nov 14, 2010 5:09 am

Brad wrote:Okay so, I got about 20-ish pages into Green Lantern: Rebirth, and I am so damn lost. I do not know who any of these people are. Here's my knowledge of the Green Lantern universe:

This guy Hal Jordan is an air force pilot who finds a crashed ship with a green guy in it who gives him a ring and tells him that he's now the Green Lantern. There's a different Green Lantern for every sector of the universe. The ring can basically make any imaginable form out of pure energy (basically). I don't know anything about any back stories of any other supplementary characters or happenings or whatever.

So yeah, I'm thinking this series might be a bit too far ahead in continuity for me to really enjoy to it's fullest. So if I'm looking to get "caught up" on Green Lantern (at least to the point of being able to read these Geoff Johns books, where do I need to look?)


I think the link Godix posted is probably the best one. It's a very short summary, but should give you enough info on what happened. With that said though, I'll try to summarize 10+ years of GL history in the next few paragraphs:

As you already know, there's a Green Lantern in each "sector" of space (we're 2814). Hal Jordan was chosen to wield the ring by Abin Sur who crash landed on Earth. He was chosen b/c he has "the ability to overcome great fear." Keep this Fear (and Will Power) stuff in mind since they are a key element in Geoff Johns run. It's all part of this "emotional spectrum" thing that he introduces in Rebirth. Anyway during his origin tale, he's trained by the best Green Lantern, Sinestro. After their training though Hal finds out that Sinestro has basically enslaved his race by using Fear to make them obey. Sinestro had the most "peaceful" sector and now Hal knows why. Hal outs him and Sinestro becomes Hal (and the Green Lantern's) greatest villain. Eventually Sinestro finds a yellow ring and for awhile all we know is that green can't touch yellow (i.e. it's the weakness). This is finally explained during John's run. All you need to know is Sinestro has as yellow-based ring and fights the GLs a lot.

All goes well for awhile (well a long time...Hal Jordan was the GL for like 30+ years worth of comics), but as Lantis noted, after the Death of Superman, he started to go crazy. During the Death/Rebirth of Superman, Cyborg Superman and Mongul (all you need to know is this is Mongul is some evil alien) destroyed Coast City (Hal's hometown) killing 7 million people. When he revived Coast City using his ring, the Guardian forbade him and so he went rogue. After all, he thought he was doing something good after all those lost lives, etc. Oh and since it isn't mentioned by anyone yet, the Ring basically responds to Will Power and can create anything the user can imagine. Obviously Hal is very powerful if he can revive an entire city purely using his Will Power.

The books that detail Hal's spiral into madness are called "Emerald Twilight" and as the Wiki article notes, he kills many Green Lanterns and eventually destroys the power battery and the Guardians. He also finally kills Sinestro, something he never did (after all heroes don't kill). Actually he doesn't destroy the Power Battery...he actually absorbs it and becomes Parallax. During the carnage, one of the Guardians (Ganthet) gets away and gives a human (Kyle Rayner) a new ring and a lantern. Kyle is now Earth's Green Lantern while Hal is Parallax. As Lantis also indicated, next comes a cross over (Zero Hour) where Hal/Parallax tries to reform the Universe into his own image (remember he thinks the Guardian's inaction caused all this injustice), but is stopped by the JLA, etc. He ultimately redeems himself by sacrificing himself to refuel our Sun.

Now I'm not too sure about this part, but later on Hal becomes the Spectre who is literally an Angel of Revenge (from God). He gets his own comic book series where he basically punishes criminals, etc. Again, I don't know too much about the Spectre. Flash forward to ~2004 when Geoff Johns is asked to "reboot" the Green Lantern universe...

Green Lantern: Rebirth is basically DC trying to get the fans to "forgive" them for Emerald Twilight by redeeming and reviving Hal Jordan. The fans were obviously very pissed off when Hal Jordan went rogue and became a villain. They also never fully accepted Kyle Rayner as the Green Lantern because of this. Geoff Johns was (and still is) the DC darling so they decided to give him full control of the Green Lantern Universe and try to make it a successful one. Rebirth is the start of his run and Johns introduces a lot of new elements, explanations and lore. Basically he did to the Green Lantern universe what he already did to the Flash and JSA universes (i.e. made it relevant and "top tier" title).

Hopefully this is enough to get into Rebirth and hopefully Rebirth will be enough to get you into Geoff John's entire GL run. It's rather lengthy, but you're in a good position in that the big event Geoff Johns had been building up for 6 years (Blackest Night) finally concluded and as a fan I'm very pleased with what he's done these last 6 years. Let me know if you need any more details. I haven't read Rebirth in awhile, but I think that's enough to understand the past events, motivations, characters, etc.

Edit: I forgot to mention there's also John Stewart and Guy Gardner who were also former Green Lanterns. Basically Kyle saved the Green Lantern Corp/battery at some point prior to Rebirth which is why John and Guy are relevant again. Also I took a look and the reason Kyle is coming out of the Sun is because he's retrieving Hal's body. Remember Hal refueled the Sun and sacrificed it. I'll take a look through the books and make sure I got everything...

Brad wrote:Well I just watched the animated film Green Lantern: First Flight (which was, awesome). I'm going to go ahead and assume that as far as continuity is concerned, it doesn't exactly fit nicely anywhere in the canon universe. But it did give me a fairly decent overview of the guardians, the lantern, etc. Unless that was all just useless knowledge when compared to the comic-verse.

I'm starting to wonder if stories like this are purely made for comic book fans alone, and not really for new readers.


No, the cartoon is a pretty good 'synopsis' of the story and lore. The irony is, Rebirth was actually done for new fans, but after writing all that, I can see how it'd be difficult to start with. I guess Rebirth was written for "new" fans of GL in that, the fans that left 10+ years ago and were pissed. At the same time, I hadn't read a single GL book when it was released, but it got me interested enough to read Emerald Dawn, Emerald Twilight, etc. as well as continue with the run.
Last edited by dwchang on Sun Nov 14, 2010 5:29 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Comic Books

Postby Pwolf » Sun Nov 14, 2010 5:20 am

dwchang wrote:I have a boner for GL


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Re: Comic Books

Postby Brad » Sun Nov 14, 2010 11:47 am

Daniel: Thanks for the explanation. I will give Rebirth another go here today. Given the new knowledge, plus other things I've read about the reboot (which basically led me to believe that I had to push through the confusing parts and eventually stuff would make sense) I should be good to go without going back and reading old stuff, though I might eventually if I enjoy this enough.
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Re: Comic Books

Postby Brad » Wed Nov 17, 2010 8:57 pm

Okay. Just got another haul. >_>

Here's what I have read since my last post:
Astonishing X-Men Vol. 1
World of Warcraft Vol. 3-4 (these books were much better than vol. 1 & 2. More cohesive storytelling throughout)

So yeah. Not a lot of reading done in the last week.

Here is what I have picked up since:
Astonishing X-Men Vol. 2-5
Batman & Robin: Batman Reborn
Batman & Robin: Batman vs. Robin
Batman: The Return - Issue 1
Batman Incorporated - Issue 1

Here is what I had before and still need to read:
Batman: The Long Halloween
Green Lantern: Rebirth
Green Lantern: No Fear

Daniel (or anybody else that might know), do you know which comes before which with the Batman & Robin books? I'm PRETTY sure it's Batman Reborn before Batman vs. Robin. I got them because I knew that the new Grant Morrison series were starting today and they sounded interesting, but AFAIK they follow the events of Batman & Robin, but if I'm off base on that, please let me know so I can fill in gaps where needed.

I have a feeling I'm gonna go through Astonishing X-Men first though. I read through the first volume and REALLY enjoyed it, so it definitely is a series I'd like to get through.

I also picked up Arkham Asylum for PS3 from Amazon for $15 on Monday.

I'm sick. :|
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Re: Comic Books

Postby dwchang » Mon Nov 22, 2010 1:21 am

Brad wrote:Batman & Robin: Batman Reborn
Batman & Robin: Batman vs. Robin
Batman: The Return - Issue 1
Batman Incorporated - Issue 1

Daniel (or anybody else that might know), do you know which comes before which with the Batman & Robin books? I'm PRETTY sure it's Batman Reborn before Batman vs. Robin. I got them because I knew that the new Grant Morrison series were starting today and they sounded interesting, but AFAIK they follow the events of Batman & Robin, but if I'm off base on that, please let me know so I can fill in gaps where needed.


Damn.

I wish you would have talked to me beforehand. Maybe you enjoyed them, but I personally do not think you will enjoy those books. The Bat Books are a freaking mess right now. It doesn't help that Grant Morrison is the type of writer that likes to confuse people just for the sake of confusing them. You know, one of those guys that thinks he's SO clever b/c he brought in some obscure character only old people remember or a convoluted plotline that "makes you think." I'm all for things making you think, but not when you intentionally make it confusing. That's so artificial. Anyway, I think he's one of the most overrated "popular" writers in comics today (with Brian Michael Bendis...only I like some of Bendis' stuff). In fact, I stopped reading all of his Bat Books after the Return b/c it finally "closed" that arc and I can make a clean break. Personally I prefer Paul Dini's writing for any Bat Book. Helps that he wrote the cartoon back in the 90's.

As you may have figured out (from reading those titles), Batman died in Final Crisis or rather was "stuck in time" because Darkseid had some elaborate (i.e. confusing) plot to end the universe. I don't even fully get wtf was going on or how his plot really worked. The only thing you need to know is Bruce Wayne was dead for ~2 years or so and has now returned after his journey through time. Dick Grayson (i.e. first Robin and Nightwing) took over the Batman duties for awhile and now Bruce is establishing some "business" with global Batmen or some junk. Like I said, I stopped reading.

To answer your questions though, I believe Batman Reborn is before Batman vs. Robin. Pretty sure the latter is the 2nd trade and the first is the first trade where Dick is Batman. As for gaps, there's honestly way too many since Final Crisis was over 2 years ago and basically that's 2 years of Bat Books to fill. I have most of them in single issue form if you are that interested though. As you can tell, I did not enjoy them :|. It's a month+ away, but I'll be sure to bring some good stuff later this year when I intend to visit. I can also bring books like these Bat Titles upon request, if by some weird coincidence you like these titles and disagree with me :P.

Brad wrote:Here is what I had before and still need to read:
Batman: The Long Halloween
Green Lantern: Rebirth
Green Lantern: No Fear


Is "No Fear" the first GL trade? Basically after Rebirth, they restart GL with issue #1. They're on 56 or something. That's basically the majority of my GL reading (that reboot till now).

Brad wrote:I have a feeling I'm gonna go through Astonishing X-Men first though. I read through the first volume and REALLY enjoyed it, so it definitely is a series I'd like to get through.


Figured you'd enjoy it. Whedon is a great writer and it's a shame Warren Ellis took over and ruined the book. I hope Volume 5 is not Ellis because you will notice a considerable drop off in quality. I stopped reading after his first arc.

Without spoiling things, there will be a villain later on that is related to Professor X's past. It'll sound really messed up and this goes all the way back to...wait for it...wait for it...Grant Morrison. I can tell you the background of the character later if you're curious, but you're going to go "wow that's fucking retarded" and it is. That's the only bit of "background" I think you may be missing for Whedon's run.
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Re: Comic Books

Postby Brad » Mon Nov 22, 2010 7:26 pm

I haven't read the new Batman books yet. I got caught up reading the X-Men books. I read vol. 2-4 in one shot and yeah it was fuckin awesome (god damnit I love Kitty). There was definitely quite a bit of stuff I was fuzzy on, but it was the kind of thing where I enjoyed it anyway, but might've enjoyed it even more had I read what had come before it (such as, the whole Genosha ordeal, why is Professor X out on his own, where are Storm, Rogue, Jean Grey, Gambit, etc., what's Emma Frost's story and why is she in the group, that sort of thing. It's also not the kind of thing I'd want to just read a synopsis on. I'd prefer to read the books in some relative form of continuity so I can actually experience the story unfold).

And yes, Vol. 5 is Warren Ellis. I haven't started it yet but I'll definitely give it a shot.

On the GL front, as far as I can tell, Rebirth comes before No Fear. I really don't know what TPBs come after that.

So yeah, my next book is definitely The Long Halloween. I've put that one off for too long. Keep the advice coming though (but try and keep it as spoiler-free as possible. Or wrap it in a spoiler tag).
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Re: Comic Books

Postby GloryQuestor » Mon Nov 22, 2010 9:37 pm

On the Marvel front, the Nova limited comic series has been pretty good. Here's his Marvel bio --you can read from "Early History" to "Namorita" to get a good backstory of his character before diving into the limited series.

The (now discontinued) run spans from Annihilation to War of the Kings, ending with Issue 36 (the beginning of the Thanos Imperative and Secret Avengers), along with 8 other issues from each of the two major series he was involved in, Annihilation and Annihilation Conquest. I found 8 total TPB volumes comprising the main Nova series and the collected side-issues from Annihilation and Annihilation Conquest.

You should definitely look into this one. :)
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Re: Comic Books

Postby dwchang » Wed Nov 24, 2010 6:26 pm

Brad wrote: I got caught up reading the X-Men books. I read vol. 2-4 in one shot and yeah it was fuckin awesome (god damnit I love Kitty).


Yeah it's not a surprise that Joss Wheodn's favorite character (in any media format) is Kitty Pryde so it's also not surprising she plays a prominent role in his run. At Comic-Con during his Q&A a few years back, some girl came up to the mic dressed up as Kitty and Whedon was like "ARE YOU KITTY PRYDE?" He sounded kind of...crazy.

Anyway I guess you can see why Meri has such a hetero-crush on her :P.

Brad wrote:There was definitely quite a bit of stuff I was fuzzy on, but it was the kind of thing where I enjoyed it anyway, but might've enjoyed it even more had I read what had come before it


I'll try to answer these as best I can. If you would rather read them then be warned SPOILERS AHEAD:

Spoiler :
Brad wrote:the whole Genosha ordeal


At the start of Grant Morrison's run (I think), Professor X's never born, already dead (?) twin sister Cassandra Nova (I told you Morrison likes confusing people for no reason) launched this super Sentinel attack on Genosha. Genosha was home of > 1 million mutants and accepted as a "Mutant Country" or something to that nature. Almost all of the mutants died in that attack and it was obviously a big deal. She did it since it was in complete opposite viewpoint to what her brother wants.

I said earlier that there was one villain during Whedon's run that might not make sense and that was Cassandra Nova. IIRC, she appears in Whedon's run as some disembodied spirit or subconscious. She tries to trick Kitty into digging up her brain or something. I forget. But yeah, freaking Grant Morrison. Basically Professor X had this twin sister that he tried to kill in their mother's uterus (no..seriously) so she's obviously pissed off. I have no idea why Grant Morrison would make such a retarded villain involving not even born babies.

Brad wrote:why is Professor X out on his own


Maybe 2 or 3 years ago there was a major event called "Deadly Genesis" where it's revealed there's a third Summer's brother (other than Cyclops and Havok). Charles kept this hidden from the X-Men and more importantly Scott and Alex.

Basically during the very famous comic introduction of X-Men like Wolverine, Storm, etc. (i.e. Giant Sized X-Men #1 in the 1970's) Jean, Iceman, Beast and Angel are captured by this "Living Island" Krakoa (you might already know this story). Cyclops is the only one to get away and he recruits the "new" X-Men that you already know and love (Wolverine, Nightcrawler, Storm, etc.) and they save the day, yadda yadda. Well "Deadly Genesis" basically tells this lost tale where Charles had another team of mutants that included Scott's younger brother (Vulcan) and he sent them to save the X-Men prior to the known rescue. They failed and are presumably killed (hence the new team you know) so Xavier keeps it a secret.

To make a long story short, the X-Men find out about this during that event and are disgusted with Charles and basically kick him out. He's been basically abusing his mind control powers to keep them from remembering things so they no longer trust him. I mean what else has he kept hidden?

Brad wrote:where are Storm, Rogue, Jean Grey, Gambit, etc.,


This one is a bit easier to answer. This is simply a book thing. The Astonishing book basically had its own team while Uncanny X-Men and X-Men (which is now Legacy) had its own cast of characters. With so many mutants, they obviously wanted to split them up so that they could each get enough attention. My guess is Whedon had first choice when assembling the cast for his book (since it was easily the biggest seller) and the others divvied out the others.

Of note though:
-Jean Grey is dead. She died at the end of Grant Morrison's run maybe around 2004 or so. I'm actually surprised she's still dead since you know comic books and death. I believe Magneto kills her.

-Storm is queen of some African nation. She marries the Black Panther (another super hero) who happens to be king of that country. For a good amount of time she's not in the X-Men books, but is in them recently.

-Gambit is back with the X-Men, but a few years ago he was actually with Apocalypse. I think he was trying to save them from Apocalypse by submitting to him, but he gets his brain messed with and becomes Apocalypse's new Death. After being a villain for awhile he eventually rejoins the team. Probably got "unbrainwashed' or whatever. I do remember him being with Mister Sinister during Messiah Complex but that might be because of something involving Rogue.

-Rogue can now control her powers better. She can control when she absorbs people's memories and powers. I think she's now leader of one of the teams too.


Brad wrote:what's Emma Frost's story and why is she in the group


This goes back to the Genosha incident. Emma is no longer a villain by the time of the Cassandra Nova and is teaching mutants in Genosha. Kind of like what Charles was doing by training the X-Men on how to survive. Due to the attack she loses all of her students and she eventually joins the X-Men. She survived the attack because she has a secondary mutation that manifests during the attack. It's her ability to turn to diamond.


END OF SPOILERS

Brad wrote:And yes, Vol. 5 is Warren Ellis. I haven't started it yet but I'll definitely give it a shot.


Unfortunately I think you will see a considerable difference in quality. It's not to say Warren Ellis is a bad writer, but as I noted elsewhere, he's not very good with mainstream titles like X-Men. He's great with his own creations like Global Frequency though.

Brad wrote:On the GL front, as far as I can tell, Rebirth comes before No Fear. I really don't know what TPBs come after that.


I did a search and you're right. It looks like No Fear is the first 6 or 8 issues of the rebooted GL. It's up to issue 56 or 57 now. If you like Rebirth, you will most likely enjoy the current GL run.

Brad wrote:So yeah, my next book is definitely The Long Halloween.


Damn straight. As I noted to Julian, this is probably my favorite "Batman story." It's just a good and entertaining mystery/detective comic and feels more "Batman-y" then Dark Knight Returns.

Damn that reply took forever...
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Re: Comic Books

Postby dwchang » Wed Nov 24, 2010 6:33 pm

GloryQuestor wrote:On the Marvel front, the Nova limited comic series has been pretty good. Here's his Marvel bio --you can read from "Early History" to "Namorita" to get a good backstory of his character before diving into the limited series.

The (now discontinued) run spans from Annihilation to War of the Kings, ending with Issue 36 (the beginning of the Thanos Imperative and Secret Avengers), along with 8 other issues from each of the two major series he was involved in, Annihilation and Annihilation Conquest. I found 8 total TPB volumes comprising the main Nova series and the collected side-issues from Annihilation and Annihilation Conquest.

You should definitely look into this one. :)


Personally I am not a fan of the "Cosmic" books like Guardians of the Galaxy, Nova, etc. I know plenty of people who are fans (like TJ), but I guess it's odd....I enjoy super hero comics, but can't accept cosmic stuff. It's just too "out there" for me. Anyway if you are into that stuff (from your tastes I'm not sure you are Brad), Annihilation was the big event. It involved this dude from another dimension called....Annihilus *cough* :P.

Then again classics like the Infinity Gauntlet were great so who knows what I'm missing...
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Re: Comic Books

Postby BasharOfTheAges » Wed Nov 24, 2010 9:21 pm

Never really been into actually reading comics, but this whole thread is a pretty neat read in and of itself. :up:
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Re: Comic Books

Postby Brad » Fri Nov 26, 2010 4:41 pm

Just picked up the JMS run of Thor (all 3 volumes). This better be good :O
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Re: Comic Books

Postby Prodigi » Sat Nov 27, 2010 9:37 am

Brad wrote:Just picked up the JMS run of Thor (all 3 volumes). This better be good :O

Next time you're at the comic store can you see if they have the full collection of Preacher? If so I'm joining you in a visit to the store when I get there and buying it.

I'm a fan of Garth Ennis and that series seems right up my alley.
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