Report what comic books you have read today--and tell us a little something about it while you're here!

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I read Legion of Super-Heroes Annual #3, the one Rob alluded to a couple days ago. This isn't the one set in present-day featuring Jamm. This is the one that sets up the Timber Wolf storyline, which was its own limited series.

I remember both of these stories, both the Timber Wolf as well as the one about Garth and Imra's christening their twins. What I didn't remember was that neither of them were written by Keith Giffen. The first was written by Al Gordon (the writer of the Timber Wolf mini), and the second was by Tom and Mary Bierbaum.

The first one, with art by Rob Haynes, wasn't too bad. First off, the art could easily be taken as either Giffen or Jason Pearson at the time, which blended in well. It brought in a character who looks a lot like Phantom Girl (her name is Gemini or Aria or something...she's called both) who seems to be kind of a ghost guide known to Brin "Timber Wolf" Londo. This story is kind of based around Brin's transformation back from "Furball" or "Frisky" back into his less hirsute form as Timber Wolf.

The second story is drawn by Brandon Peterson, and it's also pretty okay. The main part of the story is like The Big Chill in comic form, with the familiar characters of the Legion taking the places of the cast. The big takeaway from this story is the fact that Garth has actually been Proty I ever since they performed a ceremony of some kind years earlier in order to bring Garth back to life. They never really did succeed in that quest, and instead Proty just took his place, and, according to this story, impregnated Garth's wife. It's too bad the 5YL storyline didn't last any longer, because it would have been interesting to see what became of those half-Proty twins.

I've been reading the Dark Nights Metal trades and must say I've enjoyed them.

Crossovers/Events generally leave me underwhelmed these days (I'm trying to avoid anything Marvel adds an 'Infinty' label on) but this had real heart to it.

(Did anyone else have trouble reading the various fonts used for the bad-Batmen?)

POGO: After Animal Comics> came to an end in 1947, Walt Kelly found himself art director of the short-lived New York Star. According to R.C. Harvey: “When it folded after a meteoric seven-month run, the New Yorker said of it that it had been the ‘semi-official outlet of advanced liberal thought’ put out by ‘a staff of indefatigable crusaders.’” In any case, art director Kelly hired cartoonist Kelly to produce a comic strip version of Pogo which ran in the New York Star from October 4, 1948 until the paper’s last issue, January 28, 1949. NOTE: The New York Star strips are not included in IDW’s Library of American Comics but they are in the first volume of Fantagrphics’ Pogo (1992).

BLOOM COUNTY: “Best Read on the Throne” was released yesterday and immediately shot to the top of my “to read” pile. The highlight has got to be the Berke Breathed/Bill Watterson jam of “Calvin County” in which Calvin has traded Hobbes to Opus for Bill the Cat.

LITTLE ORPHAN ANNIE – AUGUST 1931: Warbucks sends Bill to Maw Green’s boarding house and to Jake’s store to check up on Annie. Warbucks figures she’s doing fine n her own, but has Bill type up a back-dated letter, which Warbucks signs, saying he’s in China and encloses $100.00. He then gives it to a Chinese friend of Bill’s to hand deliver. He learns of Annie’s bank account and “surreptitiously” deposits $5000.00 into it, which she discovers almost immediately. Annie is then bombarded with offers of real estate, stocks, insurance and get rich quick schemes, but she keeps her money in the bank.

Warbucks is now worth millions, and J.J. Shark is on the run. Shark is convinced that Warbucks is behind his business reversal and has him investigated. We learn that it was Shark who had Warbucks’ mansion burned down. Shark’s detectives trace Warbuck’s whereabouts, but the trail goes cold after he left the hospital. They confirm that he’s blind and broke, though. Then Warbucks uses Spike Marlin, currently in Singapore, to attack Shark’s Chinese shipping company, which Shark thought was safe and that no one knew about, and what he was using as a fallback.

Shark learns that Flophouse Bill is the one buying up the stock he dumped on the market, but he still suspects Warbucks is behind it. He orders two of his men to go t Bill’s office and kill whoever they find there. They see Warbucks and are so frightened of his reputation they skip town. Shark has no idea what’s going on, but he vows revenge.

The August Sunday strips are reserved for Sandy and Pat’s antics.

I read Action Comics #1001. You know, I find it really refreshing that Bendis is not making gigantic, sweeping changes to the Superman world. I like how it feels just old-school enough to be comfortable, but it moves quickly under Bendis's writing. I've always found his work to be wordy but smooth, if that makes any sense.

I haven't read Bendis' Superman stories but I have a theory that he loves the character and this is why he isn't going off the rails. Plus likely editorial mandate.

I read the latest issue of Flash. It started in an interesting way, with Barry conducting a meeting of Flashes from all over the 52 Earths. Other than that, I'm kind of surprised that they dropped Bart Allen in a couple issues ago, but still have yet to mention him again after that. I hope he pops up again soon, otherwise it seems like kind of a bait-and-switch.

I thought it was interesting the way Commander Cold is making a return to the book, as kind of an in-the-way hero who might be a villain.

I also read Batman #51-52. It's the courtroom storyline, and I have to say it's pretty fascinating. But what I think I loved most about these issues is the way Dick Grayson has slipped so effortlessly into the Batman role. Tom King is playing off of the fact that Dick has been Batman a few times already--I'm thinking of Prodigal and Morrison's Batman & Robin at least.

First, a thank you to Power Book Pete for fixing my previous typo.

Now then, am I wrong or is DC silently phasing out its bi-weekly program?

It seems like once a bi-weekly title hits issue 50, 51 on is at the monthly price of $3.99.

Have those books gone monthly, or are they still bi-weekly and DC is just charging an extra $1 per issue now like they are for the new Justice League series?

The indicia for Flash #52, buried on the bottom of the last page, still says bi-weekly. I think it's actually semi-monthly (twice a month) rather than every two weeks.

Just read a story from Superman 372 via the 'by Gil Kane' collection.

It is a future set tale  of elderly Jimmy Olsen and the grandson of our Superman.

It is full of hover cars and future tech as it takes place in the distant days of...2021. !

HEY, KIDS… COMICS!: The latest series by Howard Chaykin deals with the comic book field throughout history. It features a large cast of characters and the story follows each of them from the 1940s through the present day. It’s a gritty, depressing story but it manages to avoid Chaykin’s usual excesses. It’s roman a clef, and it’s… well, I won’t say “fun” but “challenging”… to figure out which character is based on which writer, artist, editor or publisher. I think it is a series everyone on this board should be reading.

POGO: I’ve long known that Pogo started as a comic book before becoming a comic strip, but what I didn’t realize until recently is that Pogo continued to be featured in original comic books even after the strip had begun. Yesterday I noted the comic strip which appeared exclusively in the New York Star from October 1948 through January 1949. The next comic book to appear was Pogo Possum #1, 52 pages, cover-dated OCT-DEC 1949.

LITTLE ORPHAN ANNIE – SEPTEMBER 1931: J.J. Shark goes to Bill’s office and finds warbucks working their alone. Shark pulls a gun, but Warbucks turns off the lights, disarms him and beats him mercilessly. After turning him over to the police, Warbucks’ secret is out in the open and he directs Bill to rent offices and a penthouse in a high rise skyscraper.

Meanwhile, Pat becomes ill and Annie picks a society Doctor at random, Dr. Lens, to help her. Annie didn’t know it, but Dr. Lens is a specialist who gave up his practice to become a consultant (which is just as well; Annie didn’t want a doctor who was still practicing). He certainly doesn’t make house calls, but Annie persuades him to in this case. He pulls Pat through, but advises she needs more fresh air and sunshine. He offers Annie a job as his assistant and will let them both live at his house, which is in te city but has a garden on the roof.

Wanting what is best for Pat, Annie tells Maw Green and Jake that she will be moving away. They are both sorry to see her go, but they understand. Once there, she discovers a locked room which the maid tells her no one but Doctor Lens ever goes into, and sometimes he stays there all night. One day, Annie finds the door to the room unlocked and goes in to investigate. She discovers a laboratory and frightens herself when she literally fins a skeleton in the closet.

Warbucks is now worth billions rather than millions. He wants to help Maw Green, but he knows she won’t accept charity. He hires an investigator to research her family history, then fabricates a long lost uncle who has left her inheritance. I don’t know how much he gave her, but she was able to buy a little bungalow and a car, and hire a chauffeur to drive it. Jake s also doing well, without any help from Warbucks. He now wears a coat and tails, but only when he’s on the floor. When Annie comes to visit, he takes off his coat in the back office and outs on his favorite straw hat.

Now that Warbucks is back on top, he decides to leave Bill in charge and take his yacht to Europe to seek a specialist who might cure his blindness. (He doesn’t know that Annie is now living with Dr. Lens.)

One day, while Annie and Pat are out for a walk, a woman in a car seems to recognize Pat. She orders the driver to turn around, but it’s a narrow street and by the time he does, Annie and Pat are gone.

DC still has a few series that are bi-monthly. Like, Justice League, Batman, and Wonder Woman. There are a few titles holding on at $2.99, but most of the line is at least $3.99.  A quick flip through Previews I didn't see any of the bi-monthly titles at that $2.99, but there could be.

Lee Houston, Junior said:

First, a thank you to Power Book Pete for fixing my previous typo.

Now then, am I wrong or is DC silently phasing out its bi-weekly program?

It seems like once a bi-weekly title hits issue 50, 51 on is at the monthly price of $3.99.

Have those books gone monthly, or are they still bi-weekly and DC is just charging an extra $1 per issue now like they are for the new Justice League series?

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