September Grab Bag!

So it has been an interesting month since the last Grab Bag. I don’t have a lot of time so let’s get right to it, shall we?

In the cool story about cool stuff that cool people like yourself might like, there’s a neat article about how they did all the alien work in District 9 here. It’s probably a bit more specific than you might be interested in, but still–it’s something to glance at if you liked the movie (which I did, a lot).  I think the movie really was one of the best examples of human actors interacting with digital ones, there was just something so natural about it, even during the daylight scenes, that really marks some kind of “whoa, this looks real–really real” moment.

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The fallout from the Disney Marvel Team Up..well, okay, it’s not really a team up, more like Disney-as-Cloak-taking-Marvel-in-up, but you know what I mean–the fallout still continues to fall out.  As you may have read, it turns out the Jack Kirby estate has sent “copyright termination” notices to Marvel and Disney.  (and film studios that have made movies or TV shows based on Kirby characters, which is quite a few), basically wanting a piece of the action. I guess the reason this news is making waves is that Marc Toberoff, a very successful litigator, is driving the case. The estate wants “to regain his share of copyright in the characters and their use in comics and other media.” From 2014 on.  Marvel and Disney would still own the trademarks, but the estate would enter negotiation to continue publishing comics based on his work.  It’s confusing stuff, I admit, but it’s good to see people fighting for credit when credit–i.e., money–is due.  Marvel did respond yesterday with this statement: “Marvel received the termination notices and is reviewing the information and has no additional comment at this time.” So..yeah, we’ll see.

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Archie is making news this week as well. I guess Archie Comics is now working with CAA, the big Hollywood agency, as a new property for films and television shows.  This is just the continuing story of dipping back into the past to bring back older properties to new audiences (Scooby-Doo comes to mind)…I am not sure. As the Cinematical article points out, Josie the Pussycats didn’t do too well. Will anyone really care about Archie?  I shudder…images of Archie meets Gossip Girl comes to mind. Gross. What’s next? We had Casper…how about Richie Rich?  (Actually, that already happened–thanks for the correction, guys! -m) Hey Hollywood–let’s get new ideas out there, stat! Speaking of which, they are dong a remake of Highlander and the guy who directed Fast & Furious, Justin Lin, is directing it.  Come on–there can be only one!

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Brief interruptions…Spidey fans who love musicals should be pleased to hear that Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark is back on, I guess they got the funding.  So, hum..yay? (Unless he comes out in the Spider-Mobile, above, then I am fine with it.) Speaking of musical cheer, Glee has been officially renewed for a full season order, the first of the TV shows this fall to get such an honor.   Pretty incredible, considering only 3 of the episodes (of the 13 produced so far) have aired. Almost every article I have read about this mentioned the Comic-Con response, so hey–nice job.

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Are you a Whedon fan? Were you confused by Dollhouse?  I admit it, I didn’t think the show got good — and I am not even sure it was technically good, it just got less bad — toward the end and was mildly surprised to see it get renewed.  I guess there’s a good reason for that. According to Joss Whedon, Fox kinda freaked out about the concept  — like, you know the prostitution angle — and the writers have had to battle with the network to write around this very basic conceit for awhile now.  What did you guys think of the show?  I wish Fox would just get out of the way and let Whedon do his thing, or, better yet, I wish Whedon would do something on Showtime or HBO and just let loose.

* * * * has a really nice feature on Transformers 2’s concept art. I don’t really have much to say about this since I didn’t see the movie, but I love concept art (I have a Ralph McQuarrie print that he signed for me from Jedi hung in my living room) and some of these pieces are just sick. Reminds me of concept cars, you know? I wish that the concept cars they imagined for 2009 back in the 80s and 90s were actually on the road…

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In a kind of cool comics-meets-video storytelling mashup, HBO has posted, which tells a story from a variety of different views–all at once. So you can see one interaction taking place, then spin it around and see the same scene from a different angle.  It really reminds me of a living comic book, in a way, how you can show different aspects of the same moment to tell the story in a different way–you can even watch two angles at once, which is kind of hot. The scenes all exist in almost a web of scenes, and you can pull out and push in on various scenes, all telling a single story.  Apparently, this is also a game, so I guess you can get clues. I just started checking it out but it’s kind of an interesting experiment so I’d thought I share it here.

That’s what I got! See ya in seven!

Mike Romo is just happy to be here. You can email him or tweet away!


  1. This is the only comics site I have seen this week that didn’t lose its mind over the Kirby Estate Copyright Brouhaha. So let’s get that going!

    Here’s my take: Wow, that’s very interesting. I wonder how that will all turn out.

    I’m almost afraid to click that District 9 link. I took so long to see the movie, I thought there was no way it would live up to its buzz, but I was pleasantly surprised. It only dawned on me last night that I had no idea how they did any of the extensive alien effects. Maybe it’s better I don’t know.

  2. iirc there was a ritchie rich movie with Macauly Culkin… I wish my mind would remember important things rather than useless trivia

  3. @wulfstone: Yes there was. There was also an Archie TV movie back in 1990.

  4. I saw the Richie Rich movie, I’m not ashamed to admit it.

    Part of me really wants to like Dollhouse a lot more than I actually do.  Its enjoyable, and I would say that it did indeed get better as the season progressed, but not as much as I had hoped.  Hopefully this season picks up steam.


  5. @conor: Wow there is nothing Hollywood won’t give at least a pilot

  6. I’m all for Hollywood tackling characters and stories that they haven’t touched before or only in a limited fashion, it’s better than all of the remakes that have come out in the last few years. I just heard they are going to remake the Highlander movie.

  7. Couldn’t agree more about District 9.  It was my favortie movie of the year and the effects were simply amazing.  It never crossed my mind while watching how good the effects were but rather "Hey, look at that guy talk to that alien."  Awesome movie.

  8. I just watched the full 1st season of Dollhouse on DVD over a few days and I must say I think this is the way to watch it.  I can see that watching it on a weekly basis could be very irritating but watching the whole season over a few days I didn’t notice the schizophrenic nature of the show so much.

  9. oh that’s RIGHT–totally there was a ritchie Rich movie–totally forgot all about that…

  10. That District 9 peice looks very interesting. Thank you for bringing that to our attention.

    I can’t imagine an Archie movie/TV show doing well.  I know sells for the comic are rather high, but I don’t know who is buying it (other than Conor). 

  11. I made my peace with Dollhouse. I was convinced it was cancelled. I didn’t see the point of its renewal if they wanted to continue like the way they did. But then they showed us Epitaph One. Now I am genuinely excited. Best piece of Sci-fi Tv show ever. Think Warren Ellis, without the "Hello needle dicked fuckheads with arse-faces, I am Warren Ellis!". Rent the DVD and you will agree with me.

  12. Good for Glee, however, the Family Guy spin off was picked up for a second season before it even aired, so I guess that was the first.

  13. @drakedangerz: Dont be afraid to admit it. I love that movie! One of those ‘so bad but so good’ type of deals.

    Totally shocked that Dollhouse is still around; Glee is getting all of their episodes out; and Spider-Man the Musical is still greenlight. I really thought none of these things would still be around when 2010 rolls around. Guess I was dead wrong on that bet.

  14. Am I the only person here that LOVED Dollhouse?

  15. Possibly.

  16. I had a hard time with Dollhouse until about episode six or seven and i think it clicked… a little. The unaired episode was fantastic though. Makes sense the network is screwing whedon yet again.

  17. great Bag mike!! i loved the stuff aBout archie and dollhouse

  18. Wait… [stares quizzically into the middle distance] why did I see the Richie Rich movie? In the theater? With my mother?

    Young cousin! We were babysitting a young cousin. It’s not weird after all.

    As you were!

    (Was John Larroquette in that??)

  19. @Jimski: Why yes, John Larroquette was in that. As Lawrence Van Dough.

    It also has the guy who narrates 99.9% of History Channel programs.

  20. I remember that Archie T.V. movie…it’s sad that I remember liking it too. Still have Sugar Sugar stuck in my head from that movie.

  21. Is that the movie where Archie and his friends go back to Riverdale after like 20 years  and they are adults?? 

  22. Hey does have an episode discussion on District 9?

  23. @TheGoodKryptonian: Yes.

    @Mangaman: Yes.

  24. Wow I thought the Richie Rich movie was a doco about Macauley Culkin’s life.

    maybe John Laraquette isn’t a jackass.