Monday, November 28, 2011

Recipe: Larfleeze's Orange Lantern Cookies

Last year DC released the Larfleeze Christmas special:

That issue contained a recipe for "Lafleeze's Orange Lantern Cookies." So, like any normal person, I not only made the recipe, I shot video of the process. Enjoy:

Here's the recipe if you'd like to try it our yourself:

Merry Larfmas!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Super Hero Sighting: Veteran's Day Parade

So last Friday I found a high perch from which to shoot video of the Veteran's Day Parade in downtown Dallas. While there I had a super hero sighting:

I know it's hard to see because of my super cool location but if you squint hard you can see Batman, Green Lantern and (I think) Cyclops from the X-Men. I assume their theme was "Pretend Heroes Saluting Real Heroes!"

They also had a pimped out custom Batmobile following them.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Part of a Balanced Breakfast

For the longest time cereal boxes came with the much coveted "prize inside." Lately the trend has turned toward having mail-away prizes but thinking "inside the box" has returned with the greatest prizes of all: comic books!

Several General Mills cereals are adding comics to your balanced breakfast as a way to promote literacy. So, of course, I had to run to my nearest grocery store to pick up a couple of boxes. The only ones I could find were Golden Grahams and Cocoa Puffs which was fine with me because I like them both and they are awesome when you mix them together. In fact, I'd say that's much better than eating them separate and if General Mills knew what was good for them they'd rush a new shipment of Golden Cocoa Puff Grahams to the stores and send me a check for the idea.

Anyhoo, there are four different mini-comics available but I got the same one in both of my boxes (similar type nonsense has happened to me before). If only my x-ray visions would finally kick in!

The comic is a standard (pre-reboot) Justice League (minus the Martian Manhunter) story where they fight the Shaggy Man and was written by the great Scott Beatty!

Upon completing the story, youngsters are encouraged to go to:

and read the second part of the story online for free. I like it. But what I like more is a free cardboard Batman mask!!

Deceptively difficult to cut out, this mask makes the perfect distraction for 32 minutes (30 minutes to cut it out. 2 minutes of running around the house screaming " I'm the Batman!! I'm the !@#$% Batman!)

So thumbs up to General Mills and DC Comics for finding new ways of putting comic book in the hands of new readers.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Happy Halloween 2011

So the original plan was for my 3 month old daughter to go as Green Lantern for Halloween but she insisted on being every single color of Lantern possible. She also insisted that every costume incorporate a tutu.

So, for your viewing pleasure, here are all nine of my daughter's Halloween costumes (and a reference pic for each corresponding colored Lantern Corp):

Happy Halloween everybody!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

When Good Writers Write Bad Dialogue #1 - Stormwatch

I have a big pet peeve: bad dialogue. That is to say, dialogue that would never, ever be spoken out loud by a real person. And so I've created a new semi-regular feature for the blog:

When Good Writers Write Bad Dialogue
Entry 1 - Stormwatch #2

This is a classic example of "telling" instead of "showing." Image the this type of dialogue in other comics:

"Superman, your powers allow you to look through walls, so you need to look through that wall...etc."


"Aquaman, your powers allow you to talk to fish, so you should ask that carp...etc."

Now granted, Jack is not nearly as well known as Supes and Aquaman and his powers do tend to require some explanation. Plus, Paul Cornell is a very talented writer (and the creator of Bernice Summerfield!) so we're willing to let him slide...just this once!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Just Desserts

Super heroes and Halloween - they go hand in hand. Add in some candy and you've got October's holy trinity. This year the concept was expressed succinctly at the end-cap of my local grocery store. Imagine the look on this beleaguered documentarian's face when I turned down the candy aisle and saw this:

Looks like we've got not one but three separate kinds of bags of branded Marvel Comics candy to give out this year (there's actually 4 types of bags but one was just "candy sticks" and anyone that knows me knows I HATE candy sticks). How will you choose? I think you know the answer to that (spoiler: get them all).

As usual, our featured players include the Marvel Movie Gang™ (minus Wolverine...super cameo in "First Class" though, big guy!). The first bag, like all good bags, is the lollipop bag.

Next up is "Dig'n Dips" a.k.a. "Fun Dip" a.k.a. the greatest candy in the world! Yes, it's essentially just flavored sugar and yes it goes great on/with everything! After a couple of bags of these you'll be able to take on Thor by yourself.

And we end with the grab bag. The secret identities of these various candies may be "Sugar Daddy", Tootsie Rolls and Smarties but they've come dressed up as your favorite super heroes to bring a little extra awesomeness to the Halloween season.

A friend of mine gives out comic books every Halloween. If you can't do that then I recommend giving out these guys.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Green Tea

Once again I'm a little late to the party but after a few special orders I finally tracked down these bad boys:

The Brisk Green Lantern Green tea was a promotional tie-in with the movie from earlier this summer and features Kenneth Rocafort art (who is currently on the Outsiders Red Hood & the Outlaws title...I'd love to get him to sign a can) with Hal, Sinestro, Kilowog and Tomar Re! (Once again Jack T. Chance and Bzzd get screwed over.)

It may seem odd to some people that I've had these in my grubby little hands since Saturday and, despite having plenty to spare, I've had absolutely no desire to drink one. I'm not a big tea drinker to begin with and the "Mango Dragonfruit" flavor isn't terribly appealing to me.

I really just got them to add to my super hero food collection so I only need one (maybe two). So does anybody want ten cans of Green Lantern tea?

Monday, September 26, 2011

World's Greatest Chip Aisle

Well the title says it all doesn't it? I stumbled across what may very well be the world's greatest chip aisle. Not because it is stocked with your salty favorites but because it is comprised of some of the most head-scratching sandwich sides since the first tater slice hit hot oil.

The location? Big Lots.

If you are not familiar with BL, it's a close-out store where unpopular, unsold product lines go to die. I've had some great finds there in the past and it consistently maintains its title as my favorite store/grocery museum. On this particular trip it was the chip aisle that really attracted my attention with its unusually high weirdness quotient.

This little beauty caught my eye first:

1. It's close to Halloween and these chips have a "monster" theme.
2. They are in ghost shapes that resemble the Pac-Man ghosts
3. They are ketchup flavored

If that's not a triple threat then I don't know what is.

With my interest piqued I started exploring this aisle of misfit chips and came across some interesting finds. I soon noticed that the "geography" theme was prevalent in the chip world:

Representing the U.S. is "Sweet Hawaiian Onion" "Rocky Mountain Dill Pickle" and New York Deli Kettle Cooked" potato chips. Not to be outdone, Europe is also represented in a somewhat confusing way:

Snyder of Berlin's British Style potato chips represent the hodge-podge, mish-mashed understanding that most American high school students have of Europe (quick hint: one of these places loves to talk about World War II and the other one does not).

Now let's move back to the Western Hemisphere and head south of the border:

I got the distinct impression that the Curly bags were not filled with peanuts but rather some weird peanut/chip hybrid with "Mexican Style" being the most popular flavor. They go good with Happy Joe's Taco Chips. A quick google search informed my that "Happy Joe's" is a pizza chain that is famous for putting taco chips on their pizza...taco chips that you can now enjoy at home. But the pizza/chip connection didn't end there:

On the left are Pepperoni Pizza flavored potato chips from Shearer's, the same company that gave us the Hot Dog flavored potato chips that I mentioned awhile back. On the right flavored sticks...or something...

And speaking of things that I've mentioned before:

Meat flavored chips are always worth repeating. Which brings us to the ultimate chip that was a long time coming:

You like chips. You like beer. Obviously you'd like chips made out of beer.

So the next time I tell you I've discovered the World's Greatest [Fill-in-the-Blank] I expect a lot more reverence and a lot less eye-rolling.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Hooked on Comics Worked for Me

Josh Elder from Reading With Pictures speaks at CUSP 2010 about comics and reading:

Friday, September 23, 2011

Fish Story

If I ever became the owner of a dockside tavern that catered to sailors I would name it either "The Pickled Herring" or the "Recurring Case of Scurvy." I assume I'd be really good at it and would eventually own a chain of successful "fisheterias" that would rival fast food restaurant chain "Captain D's."

And much like Captain D's, I would give out educational, nautical themed comic books. Not sure what the hell I'm talking about? Well then check out the "Captain D's Exciting Adventures" freebie comic from 1980:

The comic makes an effort to both maintain the restaurant's nautical (yet anti-pirate) theme and be educational. It tells the story of Captain Samuel Reid, the "Hidden Hero of New Orleans" and goes great with a side of hush puppies and coleslaw.

As Captain D says above, Captain Reid became a national hero by a losing a battle with several British ships and then went on to play a part in designing the America flag. Like many fish eating Americans I've been completely oblivious to the details of this guy's career (and his existence). This was something that Captain D just couldn't abide so Reid's life story has been immortalized in comic book form starting with his birth...

...and leading up to the day he took command of his ship, the General Armstrong:

This thirty year process takes up one page of the comic. That's probably for the best.

The story kicks into high gear though when the good Captain runs afoul of several British warships (which, at the time, was not a good thing).

You're probably assuming that after a lengthy and bloody skirmish Captain Reid figured out some Captain Kirk-esque maneuver to beat the odds and win the battle. Nope. You've seen too many movies. He lost his ship and hid in a monastery:

"Goodbye ship!" Don't feel too bad though. Apparently his pummeling delayed the British long enough for the U.S. to win the Battle of New Orleans thus ending the War of 1812. Look at that! You just learned something from a comic book!

And as Captain D promised, Reid went on to design the American flag...

...which would almost immediately be forgotten due to the cunning machinations of that glory hound Betsy Ross.

Now no promotional,freebie comic from the 70's/80's would be complete without a section of insanely easy puzzles and games. This one is no exception and provides some brain teasers that I can only assume were meant for children with vision impairments:

And with that we say, "Bon Voyage!"

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Geek Squad

I know I'm probably going to sound like John, the owner of Cockamamie's Collectibles Shop, but don't you just love the graphics on this box?

I mean really, it looks like something you'd get at Toys 'R' Us that would be filled with any number of outstanding superhero playthings and whatnot. I mean, look at it...LOOK AT IT, DAMMIT!!!

Marvel's Super Hero Squad finally decided to get serious about superheroing and release some fruit snacks. While this may not be the first time that Thor and Captain America have shared time on a fruits snacks box, I'm pretty sure it's the first SHS foray into the grocery aisles, thereby edging out their DC Super Friend cousins in the "Wow-My-Eight-Year-Old Attention-Span-Really-Groks-These-Super-Sweet-Goodies" category and buries the needle on the "Please-Mom-Can-We-Get-These-O-Meter."

Multi-colored, multi-shaped...yep, it's everything you could want out of your Super Hero Squad Fruit Snacks. It may be hard to tell from the picture below but I assume that's everybody:

What do you mean some of them are blurry? Look, I'm not your mother. Go take your own fruit snack pictures.

Not so easy, is it?

Friday, August 26, 2011

Pie in the Face

A lot of attention has been given to the old school superhero Hostess Fruit Pie advertisements, but let's not forget that even Archie Comics got into the act. Here's an ad from 1976 that put that stuck up Alexandra in her place:

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Easter Egg Basket #1 - Going Green

It looks like those little blue tyrants that run the Green Lantern Corps have been expanding their reach into the Marvel Universe. Check out these screen caps from episode #8, "Some Assembly Required" of the series "Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes."

I guess the Guardians are attempting to destroy the Marvel economy by flooding it with their own custom funny money. Diabolical!