Wednesday, January 14, 2009

My Final Secret Crisis Invasion, RIP

I shouldn’t have taken a nap. That’s my only excuse for this slightly cranky, final posting to this blog. When I started Comic Smack there were many differences at the time:

1. I had the scrilla for comics, yielding the ability to comment on many titles.

2. I had the time to write for two blogs (sadly the KBP blog has seen much neglect).

3. Marvel had just started Secret Invasion and it was cool; DC was about to start Final Crisis and it was...well...we’ll see...

4. I wasn’t in graduate school full time, giving my brain enough free space to worry about folks in tights, as opposed to poets in tights writing about others in tights.

Between Joe Quesada, Chief Marvel Editor, and Dan Didio, Chief DC Editor, they have both found the ability to compete for comic futility. To repent for creative choices, both of them write weekly or bi-weekly ‘laments’ on what’s going on behind the scenes. While “Cup of Joe” usually appears after some major Marvel event like an idiotic FEMA for poor plot landings, Didio is brave enough to write apology letters to the mythical “DC Nation,” the group of five or so fans who think the cosmetic shift of the DC Universes has saved us from the grim tales they used to tell.

In honor of both men, I write in their famous approach explanation, an apology, and hope for the future of comics. Allow me at least three caveats:

Caveat 1: Indie Comics

I humbly admit that being a fanboy of the Big Two meant little time (or money) for the multiple other titles on the market. Outside of Scud, I had never really read much of anything else, dipping into the occasional Transformers, or GI Joe, or any randomness that looked interesting. However since procuring ‘The Sandman’ (I get that it’s not 100% indie), collecting every issue of ‘The Boys’, and listening to my friends Ryan ‘Doc’ Johnson and Jed ‘the Coolness’ Dawson that indie writers are taking notice of the Big Two’s lack of writing ability.

This is what also happened to the early Dreamworks movies...and if it wasn’t for Spielberg’s name and CGI prowess that company too would’ve tanked. But indie comics will be the way to go if you’re a young reader wanting to revel in the mystery of comics’ power, or an experienced reader needing a break. So, keep up the good work!

Caveat 2: Not Mostly Their Fault

As much as I’ve spouted off and created a general malaise of hate toward the creative stylings of Mr. Didio and Mr. Quesada (and Dan probably gets it worst since I was a long time DC reader), I get that they have bigger issues...the economy and keeping their jobs. I’m sure every chief editor worries themselves silly and admittedly these two have taken the biggest risks in comic book history (or at least risks considering the amount of massive overhauls of original work and previous risks which they undid).

In their time (SPOILER ALERT!!!) they managed to disassemble the Avengers, kill over 90% of the mutants, shoot and kill Captain America, erase Peter Parker’s marriage to Mary Jane Watson, bring back Hal Jordan & the Green Lantern Corps., kill Martian Manhunter, destroy the entire 4th World and (to me the largest comic sin) bring back Barry Allen. That’s takes large stones...because I’m fairly certain I’m not the only one turned off by many of those choices. At the same time they introduced us to Brad Meltzer and Brian Michael Bendis. And despite their larger shortcomings with the A-list heroes, manage to each eek out a C-lister or two that makes us go, “Oh yeah, that person existed once didn’t they?” And I’m certain they’re banging their heads against the wall to figure out how to revive the comic book industry as a whole.

Caveat 3: I Look to You

The average reader, and yes, even the fanboys, because for those who do dedicate themselves financially to the enormous collection of comics, crossovers, variant covers, and one-shots in an attempt to both collect and keep current with the whole universe, you deserve to be heard. You deserve to keep e-mailing (it’s free!) or sending in letters (40 cents!) or barking at comicons (bit more expensive) so The Big Two can hear how you feel. If you stopped buying comics for one month, I guarantee you that they’d take notice.

Readers are dreamers. I am a dreamer. And I still believe that comics can astound (I just read the Superman/Batman ‘Search for Kryptonite’, great series...great issues). With comic movies holding their own these days the best way to get more comic fans is to stay true to straightforward traditional storytelling and every once in a while, give the people what they want. I do think folks should keep keep the dreams alive. But recognize the power you all have as readers too...

Phew...alright, now that the air’s cleared, let’s do this...

Cup ‘o Brooks’ve just got done reading Secret Invasion. You’ve just spent the past year wondering who is good and who is bad (common terrorist theme). You’ve marveled (heh!) at the ability for a crossover to effectively alter the course of multiple titles and lives. You’ve seen this massive catastrophe destroy a self described demi-god (Tony Stark) and miraculously bring salvation to him and other heroes at the same time.

And all of this happened in one issue? Sorry, I mean one issue!

Apparently the new theme at Marvel is: We’re gonna thrill you...we’re gonna chill you...then we’re gonna land this big 747 storyline with a sudden drop so you ask the following questions:

-What did happen to Janet Van Dyne?

-How does the president magically trust Norman Osborn?

-How does everyone accept Captain America with a gun?

-Why is the White Queen in cahoots with Victor VonDoom?

Yes friends, Dark Reign is upon us. And let me tell you what will happen:

-Tony Stark will save the day.

-Namor will betray the Dark Illuminati.

-Of course, Doom will betray it first.

-Dr. Strange will return to F-up The Hood.

-The Avengers will be cool again (and do a JLA/JSA thanksgiving).

-Loki...will remain a woman...and be drawn poorly.

-The Luke Cage/Jessica Jones baby will not be found.

-This will last through mid-summer and give way to the Marvel/DC Crossover: Infinite Secret Crisis War, the longest multi-universe war in comic history. Only Spiderman lives.

In fiction and poetry they tell us: show, don’t tell. And yet Marvel has found a way to do this at the beginning and end of their past three major events (Civil War, World War Hulk, Secret Invasion). I know Bendis is a great writer and my only thought is that someone’s not giving him the time to let his ideas move and breathe. He knows that to build any comics ethos you have to plant seeds along the way. Sadly, I don’t see many of the seeds this time around (the only believable person in that room is Namor...clearly he hates most surface dwellers and covets Sue Richards).

My Hope for Marvel:

-Let Bendis write, give him room.

-Bring back Mary Jane.

-Don’t bring back Jean Grey.

-Deadshot & Skrull Kill Krew...genius...mostly for the humor and social commentary.

Keep Reading: The Avengers, Wolverine (Old Man Logan is genius), Deadshot, SKK.

PB Nation

Past few weeks it was me telling you about how we’re gonna shelve Batman (huh?), give Supes what he wants (a nation of kryptonians) and take away what he loves (his father), and bring back Bary Allen (oh wait, he’s back...he been chasing a time traveling bullet). I could also go into how DD likes to spend his words talking to DC Nation as if it’s this private forum where the members won’t speculate and dish any ‘secret’ he chooses to tell.

He is the master of tease. In a very non-functional way.

Again, Final Crisis does have some cool things:

-Wonder Woman is a fury.

-The only written appearance of the Anti-Life Equation.

Two...meanwhile, there’s a whole mess of confusing continuity issues that I don’t know if this parallels Grant Morrison’s ‘Rock of Ages’ or a blender of messed up storylines and DC’s own Identity Crisis. I can tell PB Nation two things for certain (unless they go and tell other people...wait what am I saying...someone let Eddie Berganza or Mike Carlin write this space):

1. DC is Alive...but really Dead

I’ve spoken about this before. DC was known for having many of their major heroes killed off. And when they returned, they were smart enough to have decent writers bring them back. Taking nothing away from Hal Jordan’s return (since, well, any of the GL series are the best reads right now) why in the world does Barry Allen need to come back?

My friend DJ once had me read the return of Barry Allen and really explained why he shouldn’t come back. Wally fits the mythos of the Flash well because he’s still hot tempered but has grown enough to deal with his issues (and others). Brining Barry back is like having buddy holly come back from the dead. What makes Barry cool is that he seems to be the ONLY hero left who hasn’t been tainted or done anything wrong (even in Identity Crisis...sure he’s the tie breaking vote but who remembers that?).

Bringing him back increases the chances of something bad happening. Of him doing something he shouldn’t. That sucks. And with the bizarre mistrust and alienation of the Supes/Bats/Wondie during Infinite Crisis, and the more bizarre recent storylines: Supes’ world is changed, Batman’s on vacation, WW’s about to be dominated by men (yet...feminist critics unite and kick DD square in the nads); this forced return to the silver age is going to be stained with the blood of the modern age.

2. Screw Generations

Marvel is the house of ideas, because they focus on their big three groups (X-Men, FF, Avengers) and finds ways to weave intricate storylines in and around each. They’ve always stayed away from the generational hero line, preferring a more horizontal expansion to their roster. DC has always, tradiationally, and most welcomedly, been vertical, enabling newer, younger heroes to either take the mantle, or cowl, or some new identity of their own and contribute. Marvel heroes are friends, DC heroes are family.

So, let’s celebrate by canceling Nightwing, Robin, and Birds of Prey (another hit to female driven comic series). Let’s find a refrigerator to shove Wally into (there’s nothing they can do...the flash is not GL...they can’t have a zillion of them). Let’s kill every other B-List hero who at one point was a large contributor to the universe. And if you think DD doesn’t want to do this, read his column. The man almost brags about what he’s doing. Yikes. Really?!

So PB Nation, you must have hope and I’ll tell DD’s column about the return of Barry Allen, he stated that they tried three times to bring back Barry. Something tells me that there’s some resistance inside of DC to that thought (and he can pull Geof Johns into this all he wants...the universe taking his fault solely...). Notice the dearth of quality writers not present in the DC cannon? And sales on FC can’t even be well. I think we’re beginning to see the end of DD, and hopefully the rise of Eddie Berganza who will bring back solid JLA rosters (hey Dan, Marvel only reassembled the Avengers to bring a similar all star line up like the Magnificent 7 JLA).

While I’d like to speculate on Blackest Night (I’m skipping over the Evil thing in January since it’s gonna be weak), it’s the only upcoming major event I’m looking forward to. In fact, you wanna bring back Barry Allen in a heartwrenching, bittersweet moment...give him a black ring.

My Hope for DC:

-Meltzer, Smith, & David all decide to write for DC again.

-Luthor kills Libra.

-Re-kill Barry Allen.

-Stop Trinity...and any other future incarnation.

-Green Lantern series equals moral ambiguity with the new laws...keep it up!

Keep Reading: GL Series...and that’s about it...

Final Secret Thoughts

The economy sucks right now. We have an incoming president whom to many resembles the prowess of a superhero (when I hear pundits attack whether or not he takes off his shirt over anything else about him, I get the feeling that our country’s in for a wake up). Young readers wanna be amazed. Older readers wanna be made to think the classic “what does happen when an unstoppable force hits an immovable object?” Collectors want to invest money, not lose money. Thus, until you start getting quality writers to fix your messes, at the very least...

make comics 75 cents again.


Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Been a While...

While I could take this brief entry to talk about 'The Dark Knight' and how awesome it was; or discuss the ramifications that 'Hell Boy 2's success had on comic movies of the future; or reminder the reader about how much I detest Dan Didio, I am simply going to reference two characters (one from each of the big 2 comic book houses) that should be getting much better treatment than they've received over the past couple of months (my one shameful caveat is that I'm not too current on their whereabouts and well-being as of the past couple of don't sue me if I'm misguided):

Nightwing: is there a hero more abused and left to dust like Dick Grayson? Almost a decade ago he was heading up a new JLA. A couple years ago he and Superboy destroyed the Anti-Monitor. He headed up the Outsiders after the Titans failed. He's consistently been the best of the Dark Knight (careful, smart, a great tactician, and cocky) and Superman (no powers but has a heart of gold and actually cares about his teammates). By far he would be my choice to lead the DCU through the next crisis (which I'm still unsure if they're even in one right now...all I've seen is a few folks hangin' out with Libra).

My issue is that they were first going to kill him. Now they're gonna kill Batman (equally ridiculous) and have Dick become Bruce (which he doesn't want to do and it's been done already, see Knightfall). When he left the Outsiders he lost all sense of the good balance between bad ass leader and compassionate teammate. Now he's just as brooding as Batman. DC needs to return this kid to his glory and soon.

Layla Miller: Without her, the Marvel Universe would be stuck in the House of M. While that's a great series and it has had some success with an elseworlds spin off (HoM: Avengers) we're smack dab in the middle of the Skrull Invasion. And where is she? What's she doin'? She got recruited by SHIELD and had to turn it down. Really? Does anyone realize that A. Layla had her mutant powers BEFORE she became a teen (for those lay folks, when you hit puberty you get your mutant powers along with acne...) and B. she's the most well spoken wisest character out there this side of Stephen Strange, who is now MIA.

While putting her in X Factor and having Peter David write for her is always a treat, they sent her into the future and (I believe) she has yet to return? Or she has and is still just hanging out on that step? Can someone tell me why she's not messing up Skrulls with one thought?

All right, 'nuff said. Also I've given up on Trinity. I don't really care what's happening with any of the Big Three since the week to week writing hasn't been as fresh as the first issue. Oh, and someone let me know, again, when they bring back Barry Allen so I can stop buying comics.


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Read It...NOW!!!

As I wrote on my other blog, George Carlin passed away today (the 23rd). This has been sad to me, but I decided more than spend my usual (and probably somewhat redundant rant of describing the intricate conspiracies of Secret Invasion and the infuriating ungenius of Dan Didio) I've decided to give a shout out to humor.

My friend Ryan Johnson turned me on to two comics recently which have been highly rewarding reads and made me chuckle.

First, the All Star Batman & Robin. I thought at first that it was just a send up of silver age Batman tales. A lot of tights, a lot of "holy rubber suit" batman jokes. Not a fan. Then I realized that Frank Miller was the writer for the series. Similar to Marvel's series where guest writers take on characters, Frank Miller takes the 60's Batman and twists him into his Dark Knight, curt, introspective Batman he's famous for.

Nothing like Batman painting himself yellow, sipping on lemonade all to piss off Hal Jordan (they don't have a great history by the way). Genius. Sure genius. This series doesn't reinvent or create an elseworlds storyline. It's the same original storyline, with some Miller twist. His language usage, the pompisity of batman...seeing even little dickie grayson refer to Hal as a "rube" is classic.

On a darker note, but one I imagine Miller would uphold, is a series from Dynamite Comics called "The Boys." The comic mocks the JLA magnificent seven (referring to them as The Seven) and demonizes them to the point where they are all about endorsements and money and see saving people as a part time job. The good guys are five characters who have some super powers but spend most of the time showing the corruption of the super groups.

Written very well. Chalk full of irony. And if you're a comics fan, reading the little digs and stabs it takes on the Marvel and DC is pretty entertaining. No character is safe. It's also a comic with a pretty high parental advisory warning (lotta bad language, lotta violence, lotta sex). But the 'raunchiness' is done with fine percision and intelligent wit. It's not gratuitous. It's methodical.

On a day when we all lost a man who embraced pushing the envelope and saying what he wanted, these are two comics that any George Carlin/Comic Book fan will appreciate. So keep the laughter and irony rolling in these dark days.


Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Why is this Man Smiling?

Trinity came out last week. I read it. Sadly, I have a feeling I will purchase all 52 issues over the next year.

The one thing that Trinity is likely to succeed on is that it's focusing on DC's big three: Supes, Bats, and Wonder Woman (who recently found a dead body near DC...look it up, it's true).

Of course, I fear both the success and failure of this series. If it succeeds, they'll say "Let's pick three more superheroes" (ignoring the return of the Brave and the Bold which features a russian roulette of superheroes). If it fails, they'll say "well now that Final Crisis is over and since we're waiting for Ultimate Crisis: The Final Shocker, we'll try it again with these three."

But, I will say the first issue was ok. It's all about who is this dude they're dreaming?

Just like, who is this rando god that's walking around JSA? And why does he smile all the time? He healed Damage, which makes me ask the question: how do they kill off Bart Allen whose own series lasted longer than Damage's did when he was a kid (and had a stupid looking bowl haircut) and who was on a better selling team title (The Titans, sucked, but Young Justice, rocked)?

And are the new gods these gangster dudes or are there gonna be real new gods like they displayed in the Final Crisis sketch book?

And what is Final Crisis? Why is final? Does anyone understand the monitors yet? Can Uatu the Watcher come in and pimp slap them around a few times?

And why oh why is Spider Woman trying to convince Tony Stark he's a skrull? He clearly is not, his movie made way too much for him to be a skrull.


Sunday, May 11, 2008

Are you a skrull?

"He loves you..."

So, of all the trigger phrases...why this one? Could there be a more lame phrase? Why can't it be something cool like Radio Goo Goo?

Regardless, marvel secret invasion is on...full boar...and some folks are skrulls...who you might say? Well...

Mrs. Fantastic (kinda)
Henry Pim
Ms. Marvel
Elektra (but you knew that)
Jarvis (that's why the Avenger's meals sucked recently)
Hawkeye (the other one, not Ronin)
Spidey (again the one found on the Savage Land)

Spiderwoman (the skrull queen apparently is all over that)
Cassie Pym (it's circled on Fury's board)
Tony Stark (really...are they really gonna do this?)
Luke Cage's baby

Not at all:
Captain America...the alive one...cause they couldn't keep superman killed so why not bring back cap as well?

Beyond a Shadow of a Doubt:
Dan Didio

Next up for the Marvel Universe, the age old conflict of letting the super hero kids fight the first wave of villains. Runaway and Young Avengers are so good....why do they keep wasting story lines with them?

Do I have anything to say about DC Zero...nope.


PS Sike! Yep, what the hell is up with bringing back Barry Allen?

Friday, April 25, 2008

That's It?

Countdown ended this week. The lives of Mary Marvel, Jimmy Olsen, Holly Robinson (wasn't she married to Rodney Peete?), Harley Quinn, Donna Troy, Kyle Rayner, some bug lady, some disco space I missing anyone? Oh yeah, Jason Todd and pretty much all of Jack Kirby's fourth world. Anyway, yeah, their story's over. And in one year you wanna know what's changed in the DC Universe?

Nothing...except the unreasoned destruction of Kirby's 4th make way for the 5th world? I seem to recall that they did this with the new age of magic...this is what's allowed Billy Batson to replace the wizard Shazam.

Darkseid's dead...Darkseid...wanna know how he dies? Orion rips out his heart. They've fought for decades and Orion magically figured that out now?! And why is one of the best villains of all time dead?! Part of the allure of Darkseid is that he's hanging out, but he's always evil. He's smart evil. He's patient evil. He's not the Joker, killin' folks every three seconds. Or Luthor, compulsed to the point ridiculousness. He's frickin' Darkseid, which means you can bench him for story lines, pull him out, have him kick some ass, and move on. And he never dies.

So what have we learned from Countdown? Nothing. There are still 52 universes. Ray Palmer is still the bomb. And I'm like $156 poorer for having read a series which had no storyline bearing on anything.

Thanks DD for all that! Really looking forward to Trinity!


PS Yeah, anyone read a Marvel comic lately? Someone wanna explain to me how despite the Skrulls who are like all the X-men can be easily killed by having large metal objects run through them? Or how for some of the 'human' skrulls they're easily killed by bullets? Back to the drawing board boys...

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Continuity, Foreshadowing, and Successories

Continuity Problem
I know, I read comics. How much a continuity problem could I really have when characters fly, destroy stuff with their brains, and regularly try to save the earth from some threat which wrecks half of it. Really, the clean up bill and time for any major metahuman fight would be enough to raise a few eyebrows of reality. Yet, I saw this other day and this bothered the bajeezus out of me.

Martian Manhunter has morphed into Blockbuster (another DC villain) so he can do recon on this planet of villains. He's done this at the request of Batman (this again, how in the world do the other mind readers NOT pick up on the fact that he's not really him?). But to be fair, he's there, calling Bats, and giving him the 411.

All of a sudden, Catwoman sees him. She's in a tree (natch) and about 15 yards away, tops. There's nothing else in the area. NOTHING. And yet (as I know) he does not notice her AT ALL.

Rewind to a little ditty called the Technis Imperative (quick refresher: Cyborg, Victor Stone, is a huge Galvatron-like planet that kidnaps anyone who's been a titan (kind of a bizarre Titans reunion). In short, this conflict is used to stage a JLA vs. Titans brawl (no bad guys in this one at all) AND to launch the 3rd gen Titans series (which soon gets canceled because it's not that great...).

My boy, J'onn J'onnz, is hanging out in this fifty foot trench, surrounded by tech, about 40 titans, and 15 JLAers. Somehow, while all this is going on, he mentally senses Catwoman's presence. She's about oh 50 feet away. HOW!?!?

Of course I blame Dan Didio for this.

Comics have advertised upcoming story lines for a couple of years now. Kinda like a mini-movie preview. Some have been kind of cool, others way too cryptic for anyone to care. Over a year ago the big Double D (Dan Didio) unveiled a two page spread with a bunch of superheroes on it standing around a destroyed statue of liberty head. This spread, explained later by Double D, apparently foreshadowed future plot lines and deaths in up coming issues. Many of these things have only just been revealed.

In the newest picture villains are in 4 groups of three with some heroes peppered in. Luthor's hanging out in the middle in some "oh my God what have I done!?!" type picture with purplish/reddish blood all of his hands. What do all these things mean in this picture? I'll tell you what they mean (no spoilers to worry about since I'll admit I don't read any sites which actually have spoilers...):

Group 1:
Martian Manhunter holding a knife with blood, Joker pointing a finger with one hand, placing his other hand on the shoulder of and talking to...Catwoman who is standing there baffled.
What we know at this point...
The three of them are on the alien planet that everyone got sent to. As I explained earlier JJ is doing recon, Catwoman sees him, and Joker is running one of three factions (the smart money by the by is on Vandal Savage who has lived for centuries).
What this might mean...
JJ is gonna kill Joker and end the Batman series forever; Catwoman's gonna retire. Or, JJ somehow saves Catwoman from the Joker.

Group 2:
Kingdom Come Superman holding what looks to be Ray Palmer(?) in his hand; cyborg superman chillin' out; Superman/boy Prime in new super cool Darth Vader type outfit whispering in Cyborg's ear.
What we know at this point...
Sadly, not the most cryptic group but their story lines make it that way. Prime has supposedly found his planet only to then destroy it and others. Whereabouts currently unknown. Hank Henshaw (cyborg supes) got the snot beat out of him by Green Lanterns and is being put back together by the manhunters, ALTHOUGH they've played up his story line a lot that he doesn't really wanna be a bad guy...confused...yep...and KC Supes, well, he's hanging out...trying to find Gog...not only do their story lines not cross but one of them is a good guy.
What this might mean...
Prime's telling Cyborg "dude, you're gonna get blown up and put back together and blown up again." KC Supes is like "I have you Ray Palmer and now you will give me back the $20 you owe me for our bet concerning Alex Ross' writing ability."

Group 3:
Granny Goodness with shield behind her, Mary Marvel in black costume, Eclipso doing a freaky tongue thing to MM.
What we know at this point...
MM just got her powers back and is not wearing black, GG is dead and was orchestrating the whole Amazons Attack thing, Eclipso is MIA. Even more confused...I hope so...
What this might mean...
Clearly a cheap way for the editors at DC to say "hey, we really wanted to do explain why Amazons Attack happened, and to show that Mary Marvel could be evil, and to show that there's no getting rid of Jean Loring as Eclipso." Essentially this is a CYA move by DC for poor plot planning.

Group 4:
Trickster is holding Piper's flute, Desaad is looking creepy and well...Desaad like, and then there's the Penguin, the most innocuous of the group.
What we know so far...
Oh yeah, this is my favorite cluster...Desaad's been stealing people's powers and trying to stay alive as all the 4th world characters are getting picked off. But, now he's dead. Trickster's been dead for most of the year (and Piper just recently died). And Pengy? Well, I haven't seen him AT ALL throughout most of Countdown.
What this might mean...
Trickster is clearly saying "can you believe this mess? When is this going to end?" with Penguin responding "Trickster, that's the blood of all the writers that Didio fired," and of course Desaad thinking "boy I'm creepy." They will all have their own series coming up...

What we know so far...
After the everyman experiment failing AND his injustice league failing he's apparently donned his early 1980's outfit and killed someone he didn't want to.
What this might mean...
Luthor's going retro...expect Brainiac to do the same.

Everything Else:
Well we know that the broken skis are for the Black Racer dying, the book of blood has a knife through it...if I read that series I'd tell you something profound but I bore easily of the worthlessness of it, the broken arrow is for Conner Hawke, the boom tube and the compass thingy are probably related...but I don't know how, or really care, and lastly the big broken stone head of Darkseid (whom, of course, will be the ONLY survivor of the 4th world since he's too cool to kill off, ever) well that means that he doesn't win.

In short, I don't have the answers...but this time around I have a feeling that DC doesn't either.

DC Successories
Related to some foreshadowing ads but seemingly went from super cool to super ridiculous is DC's newest ads unveiled about a month ago.

The Cool One:
Mongul is hanging out looking at his hand which is adorned with a Sinestro Ring and a Green Lantern ring. Rising above his hand is a new star sapphire ring. The caption below reads "Domination." Part of what makes this cool is the very greedy look on Mongul's face.

The Ridiculous One:
Brainiac 13 (or Luthor dressed as Brainiac 13) is hooked up to all manner of tubes and wires with two major tubes plugged into bottles holding two somewhat similarly looking cities (think Kandor). Underneath the caption reads "Oppression." What kills this is the very "Dude I'm so getting high" look on B13's face.

So what does all this mean? If you've been following GL at all you'll know that Mongul does indeed have a sinestro ring. This not only seems feasible but with the way all the cool stuff is happening with the GL series now seems the most exciting to find out (mass credit to Geoff Johns and Eddie Berganza). However, like the Penguin, we haven't seen a trace of B13 at all...we've seen him in only tiny pockets here and there ever since he got shoved back to the beginning of time to be destroyed with Imperiex.

This does inspire other possible DC Successories ads:

Picture: Extent's got a series of clocks around him at various times, including a series of decorative Swatch's on his wrist. On his face is a strained look.
Caption: Frustration

Picture: Tony Stark has a series of empty bottles around him and is passed out with various parts of his Iron Man costume off and on him. On his face is a drunk look.
Caption: Incapacitation

Picture: Dan Didio has pictures of various superheroes who he's killed off (or will kill off) and is smiling with a handful of darts. On his face is that stupid mustache.
Caption: Creative Mutilation

Picture: Scores of loyal DC readers are all sitting on a street corner holding cups and/or signs that read "will work for comics." On their faces are a look of...
Caption: Desperation

Enough hating on DC this week. Next article look for an expansion on Dr. Johnson's article about who's a skrull. Maybe I'm a skrull...which wouldn't be likely since if I had the chance to shapeshift I'd head to DC and replace Didio.