Thursday, June 07, 2012

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Welcome back to the Bat Cave.  I went for a walk yesterday.  We've been expecting some rain, so it was humid as a steam room.  I listen to my small media player when I do this to make the experience a bit more interesting.  At any rate, I listened to a podcast with Kelley Jones, whose art work I used to enjoy in various comics.  He has an unusual art style that whenever you saw it on the stands you knew who it was just by the art alone.  He did a run on Sandman for a while, some Batman stuff, and an Alien limited series.  He also did the art for Batman: Red Rain on the DC Elsewhere line.  It's sort of a alternate reality/ what if type story, and was written by Doug Moench.  It's a story where Batman meets up with Dracula.  At any rate, it was fun to listen to as I walked, and he mention some older artist that he admired like Marshall Rogers, and a few others I was not familiar with.  At any rate I found the interview over on Sidebarnation.com if interested.

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 When I got back home, I cooled off a little bit, and got a call from the library telling me that a DVD series that I'd reserved, Game of Thrones, had come in, and they were going to hold it for me until Friday.  I heard and read from various sources that it was an interesting series, so got cleaned up and went downtown to pick it up.  I'd already rented the first disc of the series from Netflix, so I had a pretty good indication what it might be about.  It's a medieval fantasy series and has a history of several thousand years, and concerns several families from Seven Kingdoms that scheme and plot for the Iron Throne.  Some of the families are noble, some are treacherous, some honorable, while others are cruel and cutthroat, and some are a mixture of good and bad, so the characters are pretty complex.  But the way it's directed, I think they did a good job of plotting the story so that's it's pretty easy to understand even for those who haven't read the books (like me) to get into the storyline and understand what's going on.  At any rate, it's been fun to find another adult fantasy series, like Lord of the Rings, but perhaps even moreso, as there's more nudity, sexual situations, and violence in Game of Thrones, so be warned ahead of time, not quite as family viewing friendly.  That may or may not be a drawback to some.  For me though, I'm enjoying it.

Later on that night though I had to turn off everything as we had a storm roll through, and we had a bunch of lightning and so forth.  So rather than risk something getting hit by lightning, I turned off the computer and TV and just read for a bit.  Since I'd heard the Kelley Jones interview earlier in the day, I decided to read a story he'd mentioned, which is one in the collected book, The Greatest Joker Stories Ever Told. 

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The story is a two part story, the first called, The Laughing Fish, and the second part is called, The Sign of the Joker.  They came out in DC's Detective Comics #475 & #476 respectively back in 1975.  It's a story by Steve Englehart with art work by Marshall Rogers.  The basic story is about the Joker and he has devised a way to chemically contaminate fish, which causes an abnormality in the fish that gives them this Joker-like grin.  His plans are to copyright these fish, therefore he'd get royalties from fishermen, manufactures etc., which would net him millions of dollars.  But first, he's got to get a few government officials and lawyers, etc. on his side to copyright the fish for him.  Of course, the Batman is a major obstacle as well.  It's a famous story, and one of the main reasons I wanted to read it, aside from it being a famous story is that it had Roger Marshall's art.  Since I'm not real familiar with his art, I'm not so sure that he would be a comic artist that I might mention or think of when talking about comic art that I like a lot, but it's hard also to judge that sort of thing on just reading two stories as well.  Nevertheless, it's a good story, and I enjoyed reading it.




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