Archive for April, 2009



Star Trek: CountdownIf you somehow missed the deluge of TV ads, in-theater trailers, magazine covers, action figures, cereal box giveaways, and automatic transmissions stamped with the logo, in just a week there’s going to be a new Star Trek movie. This film is intended as a “reboot” of the franchise, featuring a young Kirk, Spock, Scott and company in their earliest days with Starfleet. Apparently, this new film is somehow going to be in-continuity with the classic series, even though much of what we’ve seen so far drastically contradicts a lot of the classic series. (This is the reason that some geeks, like my good buddy Chase, have pre-emptively declared a jihad against the film pretty much from the moment the first teaser trailer was released a year ago.)

Unlike many of my Geek Brothers, I actually feel guardedly optimistic about the film. Let me explain — there are many different levels of Star Trek fans. There have been five television series, ten feature films, and a cartoon, and every one of them has its fans and its detractors. I liked the original series. I loved The Next Generation. I actually thought — and still think — Deep Space Nine was the best series in the franchise, because it successfully told a story with a long-term arc, something that’s commonplace in genre television today, but was still pretty rare then. Voyager was terrible, and Enterprise was pretty good, but never good enough for me to remember to watch it every week.

So while I like Trek, I do not (as Chase puts it) “bleed green.” I’m allowed to be interested in the movie.

IDW Comics recently released a four-issue comic series called Star Trek: Countdown, a “prequel” to the new movie. Based solely on the characters that appear on the covers, it seems clear that there’s going to be a time-travel element to both the comic and the film, which again, I’m fine with. Plus, the comic got surprisingly good reviews from reviewers whose opinions I trust. It sounds like this is a solid comic and one worth reading. But here’s the thing — I really want to go into the movie fresh. I don’t want any preconceived notions. I want to go in and absorb it for what it is and see if what it is is something I like. I want someone to diagram that last sentence, I dare you.

I have got a copy of Countdown. But as it sits in my pile of comics from this week, I cannot for the life of me decide if I should read it or not. Or rather, I can’t decide if I should read it before I see the movie, or after.

So, friends, I put the question in your hands. If you’ve read Countdown (or even if you haven’t), convince me one way or the other. Do it in a spoiler-free fashion. And by the time the movie comes out next weekend, I will either read it on Friday, before I see the film, or Sunday, after I see it. And either way, I’ll give you my thoughts on the comic and the movie.

Fair enough?

Get crackin’ in the comments.


NOLA Comic-Con 2009: Pics and Podcast!

Sometimes my quasi-rigid schedule gets the better of me. Last Saturday was the first NOLA Comic-Con, and the 2 in 1 Showcase gang was there in force. But as I’ve got regular features of sorts on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday, I waited until today to share some pictures of the bash with you. We also recorded a podcast that was so ginormous we had to break it up into three parts. You can download them all right now!

And now, some photos from the convention floor:

With dealers filling the middle of the room, there was plenty of shopping to be had.

With dealers filling the middle of the room, there was plenty of shopping to be had.

Rorshach asked us to take this picture again because he blinked. Chase and I were stunned to discover that Rorshach is funnier than Mike.

Rorschach asked us to take this picture again because he blinked. Chase and I were stunned to discover that Rorschach is funnier than Mike.

The guys from Mass Casualty Comics turned their fans into the Undead!

The guys from Mass Casualty Comics turned their fans into the Undead!

The first zombie Chase hasnt killed on sight!

The first zombie Chase hasn't killed on sight!

Home base of the 501st Stormtrooper Legion

Home base of the 501st Stormtrooper Legion

The guys from the Red Stick Rebellion collectors club came by for a chat.

The guys from the Red Stick Rebellion collector's club came by for a chat.

The view from the Showcase table

The view from the Showcase table

We talked to R.J. of Creeping Hemlock Press...

We talked to R.J. of Creeping Hemlock Press... Kevin from Strange City Heroes... Kevin from Strange City Heroes...

...and to Adventures of Superman, Robin, and Youngblood artist Derec Donovan!

...and to Adventures of Superman, Robin, and Youngblood artist Derec Donovan!

Kenny got a new doll.

Kenny got a new doll.

Organizer Ronnie Prudhomme gave a special recognition to Carl Tupper, the heart of the New Orleans comic community for decades.

Organizer Ronnie Prudhomme gave a special recognition to Carl Tupper, the heart of the New Orleans comic community for decades.

And the Showcase boys had a hell of a time!

And the Showcase boys had a hell of a time!

Did you miss attending the show in person? Did you not realize this was your chance to meet the 2 in 1 Showcase crew? Are you wasting away to nothing, aching for your chance to “Ask Chase Anything?” Or are you just wondering where I got my spiffy Blue Lantern shirt?

Well you’re in luck! This Saturday is FREE COMIC BOOK DAY, and we’re going to be camped out recording a special episode at BSI Comics in Metaire, Louisiana! Come on by and see us!


Everything But Imaginary 305: FCBD 2009-A Day That Will Live in Geekfamy

In a few days, comic book fans will converge on America’s shops to get their hands on a flock of FREE comic books! You should go too. Here’s why.

Everything But Imaginary #305: FCBD 2009-A Day That Will Live in Geekfamy
Inside This Column:


Lost in Silver Chapter Seven: The Arivals

Chapter Seven

The Arrivals

Benny was understandably disappointed that the palace was not emerald at all, but rather the standard gray stone one came across in the less imaginative books he’d read. Boulders, masonry, massive beams of wood – these things probably made for good, practical architecture, but they definitely lacked the flair of a green, glittering city covered in gems. In the book, of course, the green tint of the Emerald City had turned out to be caused by the green glasses all the people were forced to wear and not due to the actual building materials at all, just one of many humbugs perpetrated on the inhabitants of the Land of Oz. In that context, Benny supposed it would be impolite of him to complain about this point.

It was a rather grand castle for all that. Larger than the largest plantation home Benny ever saw back in Louisiana, both in width and height, with grand turrets at every corner and towers reaching up into the sky like the gray fingers of a giant statue trying to grip the sun. There was a moat, of course, for there was always a moat, and within the murky water he could imagine fierce barracuda, eels and even nastier serpents he had never read about in books because the fact of their existence had been deemed far too terrifying for children.

As they approached the castle, Benny felt a strange buzzing sound in the back of his mind, like a cordless telephone picking up bits and pieces of someone else’s conversation being broadcast through the air. A few seconds later, without any sort of word or signal from Baliwick, not to mention without catching glimpse of another living soul, the castle’s drawbridge began to slowly come down.

“We’re finally here, my little friend,” Baliwick said.

Cool,” Benny whispered as the drawbridge fell. With every foot it came down, Benny’s view of the inside of the fortress got better. An iron gate was raised even as the drawbridge was being lowered, and within the stone walls Benny finally saw other people, the first since Baliwick had taken him from the park where his sister had been playing soccer. Several men and women were walking around in a vast courtyard. They, like Baliwick, had a rough sort of olive-colored skin and slick, black hair. Those that stopped what they were doing as the bridge came down smiled at Baliwick, no doubt happy to see him returning home. They all looked so much alike. Benny wondered if they were all related. He had several first cousins himself, but none of them bore such a striking resemblance to him as all of these people did to Baliwick.

When the drawbridge settled on the ground, Baliwick again took Benny’s hand and led him across the sturdy wooden planks. For fun, Benny imagined himself walking across without the drawbridge as a support beneath him. He saw his small, white tennis shoes hovering only a foot or two above the stagnant moat water, and imagined a swarm of hungry piranha swimming up beneath him, leaping from the water, hoping to grab onto his toes and bite them off for a quick snack before they moved on to the rest of him. It was a gruesome image, but Benny laughed at how absurd it was. Even in his storybooks, it was very rare to encounter anyone who could hover or fly, at least without a pair a magical shoes or wings made of palm leaves and sprinkled with a precious powder of life.

They stepped off the drawbridge and beneath the great stone arch that marked the true entrance to the fortress. “Sorry fishies,” Benny said. “Try again next time.”

“What was that, Benny?” Baliwick asked.


The black-haired man who had lowered the bridge began to turn a giant wheel, slowly bringing the bridge back up. Beside him, another man bowed ceremonially to Baliwick. “You have found him, sir,” he said.

“Of course I have, Tantris. Have you ever known me to fail? Is there any word of the traveler?”

“Some, m’lord, but nothing we did not suspect already. The old woman is readying her sons to begin their own quest. We must move quickly.”

Baliwick laughed. Benny wasn’t sure he liked it when Baliwick laughed – it seemed to rumble from some deep chamber impossibly deep within his chest and roll out of his lips like an angry fog. “Let her send the fools. We already have something she does not. We have our new friend Benny.”

“What are you talking about, Baliwick?” Benny said.

“Well, Benny, some terribly unpleasant people are searching for something very special. The same thing I am searching for, in fact. But I believe you will be able to help me find it before they do. You will help me, won’t you Benny?”

“Of course!” he said. “But… how can I help you?”

Baliwick’s acid smile returned. “Ah, dear boy, that is what makes you so wonderful. You have no idea what magnificent secrets you already possess.”

*   *   *

The entry into Evertime did not seem quite as turbulent as before to Linda. The water was still piercingly cold, the currents still rough, but the transition did not frighten her the way it had before. Perhaps she was simply growing used to it. That thought made her nervous somehow.

Nancy, of course, was the first one out of the water, pulling the kids behind her. She had two on each side, hands linked, and the chain of five came out into the world that sported no sky but more than enough trees and water to compensate for the absence.

Nancy pulled herself from the water and sat beside the pool as the kids followed her out. “Have a seat and let yourself dry off. It won’t take long – not that it matters. We’ve got all the time in the world here. Oh, that reminds me…” she rolled back the sleeve of her trenchcoat and showed her watch to Linda.

“What time does it show?”

“6:35,” Linda said.

“That’s right. And the second hand?”

“It’s not moving.”

“That’s because we entered the pool at 6:35 and…” she glanced at the watch. “And 14 seconds. We are currently somewhere between 6:35 and 14 second and 6:35 and 15 seconds, and we’re going to stay at that point until we jump into another pool somewhere.”

Gene looked at the frozen watch. “So if we had two video cameras – one on the pool we were jumping into and one on the pool we were coming out of, and we started running the tape…”

“The tapes would show you popping out of the water in the second world an instant after you went underwater in the first world.”


“After a while, it kind of is,” Nancy said. “Sure wigs you out at first though, doesn’t it? Everybody dry yet?”

They all nodded and Nancy stood up and brushed herself off. “Let’s go then. Hope none of you guys were tired when you jumped in. That’s one of the more irritating side effects of standing between moments. All of your bodily functions stop. You can’t sleep here, you can’t eat, you can’t rest… Heaven help you if you jump in with a headache, because it’s just not going away.”

“So that’s why I was so winded the whole first time we were here,” Kevin said.

“What’s this place you’re taking us?” Gail asked. “The Infinity…”

“Infinity Bar and Grille,” Nancy said. “Everyone who comes through Evertime winds up there sooner or later. Better for you to see it than to try to explain it to you.”

“Why’s that?” Linda asked.

“You’ll understand when you see it,” Nancy said.

“You’re awfully good at avoiding answering questions, you know that?”

“Survival skill. Evertime rule number two is to never give anyone a straight answer unless you’re 100 percent sure what they’re planning to do with it.”

“That’s pessimistic,” Gail said.

“Maybe so, but pessimism can keep you alive sometimes, Gail.”

“What a cheerful thought,” Gene said.

*   *   *

It was another very long walk, not that there was any way to measure how long, exactly, and before it was over Linda was beginning to wonder if any two worlds in Evertime worth visiting were in proximity of each other. She tried to occupy herself by observing the odd shapes of the trees, but even the infinite variety of foliage began to grow dull after a while. Once you’ve seen something like a birch with enormous glass bulbs hanging from the boughs and the plaid mango trees, the shocks began to fade. Her attention was only really caught when she saw a distant bipedal figure that looked like a man with his fists clenched at his side, unmoving as the rest of the background. She decided it was just another tree and kept going.

After what seemed like, and may literally have been, an eternity, Nancy pointed ahead and said, “There it is. We’re almost there.”

Linda looked where she was pointing. “What, that tree that looks like it has blue apples growing on it?”

“No, behind that.”

“That doesn’t look like a tree,” she said. “It looks like a…”

“A sign,” Gene whispered.

As they grew closer they learned that was exactly what they were looking at. It was the first trace of anything that could have been man-made they saw anywhere in Evertime, and it was a “doozy” (another old-fashioned word Kevin picked up from his grandfather). As they cleared the tree that was partially blocking their vision, all five of them came upon the big, blue sign. It looked like the signs that stand near exits on interstate highways, tall blue planks that say “Food and Lodging” at the top and, beneath, had symbols for McDonald’s, Cracker Barrel and the Super 8 Motel.

This sign also said “Food and Lodging,” but it had only one symbol beneath it – a wide, curving figure eight turned on its side.

“What’s that picture?” Kevin asked.

“That’s the symbol for infinity,” Gail said. “You need to read more books, Kevin.”

“I read.”

Sports Illustrated doesn’t count.”

Linda glanced back, surprised at her friend’s behavior. Gail had been growing more and more snippy towards Kevin every time he expressed a desire to go on with this insane adventure instead of turning around and going home. She wondered if his enthusiasm for this quest would be enough to kill off Gail’s recent infatuation with him. It certainly seemed that was the case.

“Gail’s right,” Nancy said, not paying attention to the fourth-grade soap opera churning around her. “This is the Infinity Bar and Grille. Pretty much everyone who goes through Evertime winds up here sooner or later. It’s sort of a neutral ground. Any species can survive in its atmosphere no matter what they breathe. Deals can be made but disputes are not tolerated, and anyone who fights gets chucked through the front door onto their butt. Assuming, of course, that they have butts. You guys ready?”

“Do we have a choice?” Gail muttered.

“Good attitude. Now, if you’ll observe before we jump in, the time is still 6:35 and 14 seconds.” She held out both of her hands and the kids took them in their own, again forming the human chain that brought them into Evertime from Lewiston. They lined up at the edge of the pool, counted to three, and jumped.

When they surfaced, Linda spat out some water that got into her mouth and wiped her eyes clean. It was hard to see. There had been some daylight left when they jumped into the Lewiston pool, but now it was pitch black. She couldn’t see anything, even the moon or stars, but there was definitely light coming from somewhere, because it was reflecting off the water around her.

“Turn around, Linda,” Nancy said, paddling away. Linda turned in the water and realized she’d been facing the wrong direction. The sky was still midnight-black, but the building that stood against it certainly was not. It was an old-fashioned, wood-sided pub with big, glass windows that had the Infinity Bar and Grille logo painted on the front. There were a couple of smokestacks tooting white vapor into the air, and through the glass there was a lot of motion, a lot of life, although she could not properly make out anyone’s face. The building was right near the edge of the pool, and there was nothing else in any direction as far as Linda could see. No parking lot. No cars. No trees. No other buildings.


Nancy and the kids climbed out of the water and again waited for it to drip away. As they did so, Nancy showed off her watch – it was 6:35 and 52 seconds now, and the second hand was merrily ticking away again.

Together, the five of them stepped into the establishment, and the moment they stepped through the door Linda thought she was going to be overwhelmed with sound and light. The room was set up like any pub or restaurant she’d ever been to, not that different from the diner back in Lewiston, actually, with the counter against the back wall and a row of glasses with an incredible variety of beverage containers behind it. There were tables scattered, and patrons sat at them, sipping drinks or munching on food.

Who the patrons were, however, was what blew Linda’s mind. Many of them looked human, but their costumes were outlandish. At one table was a man in heavy fur with a horned, metal helmet perched atop his flame-red hair, his long beard braided halfway down his chest. Next to him sat a woman in a glistening silver outfit, with a badge on her left breast that seemed to identify her as a member of some sort of cosmic military organization. She was indulged in a heated debate with a third person, a brown-haired man wearing a tight red, black and gold uniform with a long, floor-length cape and a cowl that obscured most of his face. Whatever they were discussing he was getting mad, and he started to fumble with a large pouch on his belt.

“Rookie! Cool it!” Nancy shouted. The man in the cape and mask looked sheepishly at her when she called to him, and he took his hand off his belt, going back to his drink.

“Friend of yours?” Kevin said.

“We work together,” Nancy replied.

There were many more people walking around the room, one dressed like a pirate, a group of three in sand-colored robes, another in a purple cloak and holding a staff, still another with flowing white hair and his body wrapped in a toga. None of these were what really grabbed Linda’s attention, though, because whatever peculiarities each of them possessed, they were each clearly human.

What really grabbed her attention were all the people that weren’t.

There was an eight-foot creature with red skin and a third eyeball in the center of his forehead. Another being stood at about three feet high with hair so long and thick that they couldn’t make out any other features of his (her? its?) body. There were large, globular creatures that looked like an amoeba blown up to human size and a pair of green pods that glided across the floor and viewed the world through one big eyeball hanging from a stalk. Hulking creatures in hard, metal carapaces shaped like insects sat at the counter, and thin gray beings with enormous black eyes seemed to be comparing various medical instruments with a tiny person in flowing blue robes with a hat so large that they couldn’t see any of his body. In one corner there were even people that looked so much like enormous, walking asparagus that Kevin shuddered.

The final spectacle came from the walls. On each side of the room there was a large opening to another room, a room that could not possibly have existed based on the view they’d gotten of the outside of the building. Each of the rooms through the doors was constructed and furnished identically to the room they now stood in, and each was filled with even more strangely dressed people and outlandish creatures. And on the other side of each of those rooms was another doorway leading to another identical room, and as far as Linda could tell, these other rooms stretched out farther and farther, all the way into eternity.

“What is this place?” Linda asked.

“A place that takes you off-guard the first time you come in, that’s for sure. I could have warned you, but you wouldn’t really have believed me, would you?”

Four heads shook back and forth. Slowly.

The man in the cape, the one Nancy had called “Rookie,” stepped up to them. His cheeks, only barely visible through the hood, seemed to be blushing bright red. “He was needling me, Nance,” he said.

“I don’t care if he had you in a sewing machine, you know the rules.”

“Where’d you pick up the Lollipop Guild?”

“Hey!” Kevin shouted.

“These kids lost their way around Lewiston. Seems that Baliwick made off with this girl’s brother and she was trying to chase him down.”

“Baliwick?” the Rookie said. “Do you think she’s…”

“No, can’t be. She’s too young. But there’s got to be some connection, or Baliwick wouldn’t have risked letting us know he’s making a move.”

“Um, excuse me,” Linda said, “but would you two please stop talking like we’re a bunch of idiots? We can hear every word. What’s going on?”

Nancy and the Rookie looked at each other. He shrugged. “She’s got you there, Nance. I’m Jay, by the way.”

“I’m Lin—I’m not here to introduce myself! What’s going on?”

“Baliwick is looking for someone pretty important,” Nancy said. “Some friends of ours are looking for the same person. There’s a battle going on, and whoever finds this woman first might turn the tide.”

“Woman?” Gene said. “Then why did Baliwick want Benny?”

“Nobody knows where this woman is. Right now, information is the best weapon for both sides. If Benny knows something, he’s in a lot of trouble.”

“Then we’ve got to find him,” Linda said.

“I know. That’s why I brought you here. To introduce you to the one person who might be able to help.”

“Who’s that?” Kevin asked.

She looked in the direction of the counter, where a tall man with dark hair was wiping down the bar. His hair was cut short and he had a tiny scar near the corner of his left eye, cut in the shape of a lowercase “t”. He had big, brown eyes that looked like they had been used for a lot of smiles over the years, but he didn’t necessarily look old. He just gave that impression somehow. He wore a white shirt under black suspenders and a big red bow tie beneath his chin.

He was looking at the children.

“Welcome to the Infinity Bar and Grille, boys and girls,” he said. “My name’s Murphy. What’ll it be?”

Next: Chapter Eight-The Questions


2 in 1 Showcase Episode 116: 2009 Summer Movie Preview

It’s time once again for the summer movie season to kick into gear! This week, the Showcase boys run down all of the big pictures coming out this summer, giving their thoughts on each of them. Which ones do they want to see? Which ones will the pass? Which ones look like a NetFlix rental? And why might Blake wind up topless to satisfy Chase‘s rage? All the answers are inside! In the picks this week, Mike chooses Green Lantern Corps #35, Chase goes with The Walking Dead #60, and Blake picks Fables #83. This week’s graphic novel pick: Tales of the Green Lantern Corps! Write us with comments, suggestions, picks of the week, “Ask Chase Anything” questions, or anything else at!

Episode 116: 2009 Summer Movie Preview
Inside This Episode:

PLUS: With no new Lost this week, you get an episode safe for anyone to listen to for a change! The guys talk about feeling letdown by a clip show, then jump into the new stuff — the penultimate Heroes for Season Three and the new show The Unusuals. In DVD news, Chase gives his thoughts on the Battlestar Galactica spin-off Caprica and the just-released Spirit movie, and Blake is just happy to finally get a volume two of his beloved Tiny Toon Adventures.

Week in Geek #18: Clips, Caprica, and Cartoons


Read Ryan and Radar in Tales From the Plex #4!

Tales From the Plex #4A couple of years ago, I contributed the script for a short story to a graphic novel anthology entitled Futurius: Tales From the Plex. It was a nice little story I’m still proud of. Ryan and Radar was the story of a kid (the titular Ryan) who had a tendency to retreat into a superhero fantasy of his own making whenever he was faced with a problem. The “high concept” was that the artwork in the “real” world, Ryan’s world, would be loose and somewhat cartoon-like, while the “fantasy” world of the superhero Radar would be more like the “realistic” comics of the day. In this first story, in which Ryan has to deal with a loss that can be pretty devastating to a kid, the artwork was handled by a highly talented young artist named Matthew Weldon.

A while back, I was informed by Daniel Lundie, the head honcho of Futurius, that he was relaunching Tales From the Plex as an ongoing anthology series, and that the stories from the graphic novel would be reprinted therein. I thought it was a cool idea, and now that the first five issues are available, I wanted to clue you in on it. If you didn’t read Ryan and Radar the first time around, you can pick it up for just $2.50 in Tales From the Plex #4, available at! And while you’re there, you can pick up the entire series to date, issues #1-5, and other cool stuff from Futurius, such as the awesome vampire series The Darkling.

I created Ryan and Radar as a response to what I saw at the time as a real dearth of quality comics for all ages. The landscape has improved considerably since then, with a lot of solid comics on the shelves that kids and their parents can read together. Now, I’d love to see Ryan and Radar join them. There’s a second story finished with a different art team, waiting for publication of another anthology that’s kind of been in limbo for a while, but there are plenty of other ideas floating around I’d love to get out there. If I had any artistic skills of my own, I’d be drawing away and looking for a home, or perhaps doing the story as a webcomic. But as it is, I need to find an artist to work with, or a publisher to back it. Neither are exactly easy, but I’m not about to call it quits either.


Toy Stories: Haven’t I Seen You Somewhere Before?

As I’ve mentioned in assorted Toy Stories features, I do like variant figures. What do I mean, though, by a “variant”? Well, it could mean a lot of things — different, related characters with similar designs, redesigns of an existing figure to match a different uniform or look, an “energized” version of a character with such powers… pretty much anything that’s a “real” version of the character as has appeared in the comic books or TV show. And since the last few figures I have that I haven’t shared with you guys yet all fall into this category, I thought I’d give you guys the side-by-sides of several variants in my possession.

Monorail Mickey and Vinylmation Fireworks

Monorail Mickey and Vinylmation Fireworks

The entire point of Urban Vinyl figures is to use different designs on the same body mold, so I guess technically any of these fits the criteria. Here we see the Vinylmation “Monorail Mickey” next to the “Fireworks” mouse I showed you guys a couple of weeks ago. Side-by-site, you can really tell that the figures themselves are identical, and it’s just the paint job that’s different.

Let’s go to a far more extreme example, shall we?

Alex Luthor and Lex Luthor: Together Again

Alex Luthor and Lex Luthor: Together Again

If you recognize either of this pair, it’s probably the bald guy in the green armor with major overcompensation issues going on with his shoulder pads. This is Lex Luthor, arch-enemy of Superman, and (in the DC Universe, at least) former President of the United States. To his left, in the gold with the red hair, is Alex Luthor, sole survivor of the alternate universe called Earth-3. On Alex’s world, the heroes were villains, and the only superhero left was his father, Lex Luthor. So Alex is kinda Lex’s son from another dimension. If you’re a comic book geek like me, you have no problem understanding that.

Animated Wonder Woman vs. Comic Book Wonder Woman

Animated Wonder Woman vs. Comic Book Wonder Woman

On the left here is the Wonder Woman figure that came with the recent direct-to-DVD movie in which she starred, and designed to look like that version. On the right is the basic Infinite Heroes Wonder Woman figure, based on a more iconic comic book version. The body molds of these two figures is exactly the same, but the faces and hair are drastically different. Personally, I prefer the animated version. The lines on the comic version’s W-symbol are too heavy, and actually look more like a “cartoon” than the one that’s actually based on a cartoon. Plus, for some reason she has an expression that makes her look like she’s sniffing something vaguely unpleasant.

Flash Legacy: Wally West, Jay Garrick, and Zoom

Flash Legacy: Wally West, Jay Garrick, and Zoom

Next up we’ve got three different, related characters. In the center is Jay Garrick, the Golden Age Flash who’s been kicking butt and taking names since World War II. I was particularly happy to find this guy in a single pack, because for a while there the only place I saw him was as a variant figure in the Flash three-pack I’d already got, and I really don’t need extras of Mirror Master or Weather Wizard. Plus he’s just a great character. To the left, the gentleman in red is Wally West, Flash III and the guy many of us reading comics today grew up with as THE Flash. On the left is his former friend Hunter Zolomon, alias Zoom, now a particularly interesting madman who believes that the way to make the Flash a better superhero is by causing great tragedies in his life to overcome. Now that the second Flash, Barry Allen, has returned from the dead, I rather hope that means we’ll have two new figures coming soon — one of Barry, and one of Wally in the new costume that’s supposedly being designed by artist Ethan Van Sciver.

Now for a few figures that didn’t require much modification at all…

Pardon me, Im here to drop my brothers off for repairs.

"Pardon me, I'm here to drop my brothers off for repairs."

Billions of years ago, the Guardians of the Universe created a legion of robotic agents to protect innocent sentients from the evil one of their number unleashed. The Manhunters turned out to be psycho, though, so they canned them and got some living agents, the Green Lantern Corps. The Manhunters have never been really happy about this arrangement, though, and lately have been known to hang around with members of the Sinestro Corps. The guy in the middle came in a single pack, but the two fellas flanking him were a third of a Green Lantern Corps six-pack. They’re in serious need of some Turtle Wax.

Speaking of Green Lantern…

Green Lantern 2814.1 reporting for duty! Twice!

"Green Lantern 2814.1 reporting for duty! Twice!"

Hal Jordan is one of two Green Lanterns of Space Sector 2814. The second figure in this picture isn’t his partner, John Stewart, it’s an “energized” version of Hal. While the basic Hal figure came in a three-pack with his pals Green Arrow and Black Canary, the energy version was part of the same six-pack that included the two Manhunters, plus John Stewart, Guy Gardner, and a Qwardian Weaponer. Very few of the Infinite Heroes toys have come with accessories, and Hal is one that really should have one. Why have none of the various Green Lanterns who’ve got figures in this line come with a Power Battery?



Last, but not least, we’ve got the two renditions of Johnny Storm, alias the Human Torch, courtesy of the Marvel Universe line. One is Johnny with a little bit a fire atop his noggin. The other is Johnny in full “Flame on!” mode. Can you guess which is which?

I’ve showed you guys a couple of other side-by-sides before, so just for the sake of completeness, I’m going to show those pictures to you here too. Click on each picture to go to the corresponding article:

Stealth Iron Man and Daywear Iron Man. This is what the inside of Tony Starks closet looks like.

Stealth Iron Man and Daywear Iron Man. This is what the inside of Tony Stark's closet looks like.

Kingdom Come Superman and Classic Superman

Kingdom Come Superman and Classic Superman

And that’s all the toys I’ve got, folks. So this may be the last Toy Stories for a while, unless this weekend’s Nola Comic-Con brings me across some swag I’ve been looking for. Don’t worry, it’ll be back, I just don’t know when. In the meantime, in-between time, how about reading and commenting on Lost in Silver? Or the various reviews and other blogs I post here almost daily? I thrive on feedback, folks, so let’s hear some! Take it easy.

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April 2009

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