Pick of the Week Podcast

Pick of the Week #480 – Astro City #22

Show Notes

With Josh Flanagan off on vacation, desperately hiding from the harsh and unforgiving rays of the sun, former co-host Paul Montgomery returns to chat about comics with Conor Kilpatrick. How much Convergence talk is too much Convergence talk? They might be pushing the limits this week.

Running Time: 01:01:30

Pick of the Week:
00:01:58 – Astro City #22

Comics:Astro City_22
00:10:51 – Jupiter’s Circle #1
00:14:30 – Miles Morales: The Ultimate Spider-Man #12
00:18:28 – Rebels #1
00:23:09 – Nameless #3
00:25:31 – Spider-Woman #6
00:31:17 – Convergence

Audience Question:
00:49:49 – Rachel A. has some thoughts on why people love Batman but hate Superman.



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  1. Can’t believe you didn’t talk about Saga, that talking seal is the breakout star, no question.Seeing him in his old western style pyjamas sealed it for me. When are we getting the Daredevil podcast? Spent the whole day hangover, in a state of utter euphoria. Best thing on TV since Gomorra or True Detective.

  2. For me, the greatest tragedy of Convergence is that, for the first time, I had the thought, “Maybe that universe DID need to be wiped out.” Can’t imagine Zero Hour week being any better, but feeling cautiously optimistic about the two weeks of Pre-Crisis stuff.

  3. I still don’t have a problem with Wally’s kids (just Jai’s hideous power) but the two Convergence issues I read were very disappointing. The Question was good but hurt by having to tie into this crappy event and, as a huge Wally West fan, I was bitterly disappointed by how bland Speed Force was and just how little Bedard really tapped into Wally’s voice. Just compare this stuff to Morrison’s beautiful work inn Multiversity and it’s just embarrassing. It’s just further confirmation that moving away from Big 2 superheroes was the right move for me.

    As for the Superman question, that was an interesting discussion but I have my own take on it. I think the fundamental problem with the way people write Superman these days is that they write him as an action hero. It is this version of Superman that has been present in the monthly comics since at least Crisis and, while some decent issues and runs have come from this, it is by far the least interesting guise of the character.

    The two aspects of Superman that really set him apart are a) his insane powers and the b) the more human/ aspirational/ alienated side of him and the best Superman stories focus on these two aspects with the “action hero” side being minimized or all but entirely ignored. Superman stories should be about pushing the furthest limits of human imagination (the “Silver Agey” aspect) or about the “human” side of the character (which is, interestingly, often best presented symbolically and metaphorically). Or, as in the case of All Star Superman (arguably the PERFECT Superman story), some sort of combination of the two.

    In other words, if a writer finds Superman hard to write because he’s “too powerful” then that writer shouldn’t be allowed within a thousand miles of the character. He’s unquestionably a difficult character to write but I dare say that more often than not the failing is with otherwise talented creators trying to write Superman like any other superhero – or worse, Batman – when he’s anything but.

    Or, for get what I say, just listen to anything that Grant Morrison has to say about the character. It’s astonishing how well he gets Superman. But then, the proof really is in the pudding.

    Anyway, great episode as always guys and Paul’s temporary return was a very pleasant surprise. Hell, between this and the awesome Darwyn Cooke video, it’s like these past few days have been a “best of iFanboy” celebration. Josh, Conor, Ron, Paul, iFanboy videos, bitching about DC and, last but certainly not least, Darwyn Cooke making fun of Ron: it’s just been a blast (occasionally from the past) for a long time fan like me!

  4. I loved hearing Paul again, and I really appreciated the way he just took charge like old hat. I agree with Ilash that it was much like “The Best of iFanboy” this past weekend. Thanks, everyone for yet another fantastic podcast.

  5. I could hear the jaws drop when you described the last page of Nameless 3. Wish I could have seen their faces! Haha. Im in for that ride though and have been enjoying the book. Its gor a lot to digest and is well worth the 2.99. Probably my POTW.
    Rebels #1 was close behind. Art is very nice and I love the concept. It just jumped around a little too much for me. Wood is a master though, so Im sure it’ll gel better for me as we move forward. As for length, there is some discussion in the back matter. I think its going to follow the DMZ recipe: a large story told in 5-6 issue arcs, sprinkled with one-shots for reference and perspective. Im really looking forward to it.

  6. Great show, thanks lads. I couldn’t disagree more about Speed Force, I just loved it, the throughline seemed clear, Wally sounded like himself and I loved how much he was the good-hearted hero and family man. Even the kids were appealing. And the art was just lovely.

    Thanks for the heads up on Jupiter’s Circle and Astro City. Bought both now, read the former and loved it, and fully expect to enjoy the latter.

    The new Spider-Woman is a very well done, very NOW! comic, but for me it falls down so far as feeling like a Spider-Woman story. I know this is how Bendis wrote Jessica for years, but I’m old enough to remember the original comic, with Marv Wolfman, Mark Gruenwald and Carmine Infantino producing some very creepy stuff – remember Nekra? I want intense Jessica, the one women gelt uneasy around due to her pheromones. The character in this book could as easily be She-Hulk, or Patsy Walker, or Hawkeye… oh well, at least the bike got wrecked. Stick to walls, Jessica.

    • I think you have to just forget the Convergence titles proper and enjoy the individual titles.
      Superman- Flash these were really enjoyable books.
      They’re not all going to be great but it’s still really worth it when it is, and it reminds me how much I enjoy almost any DC more than the ‘Nu’ 52

      I have to agree with your Spider-Woman assessment. While I don’t think I want the old SW exactly, this Spider-Woman is basically a female Hawkeye, but yeah could easily be present day She-Hulk etc.
      I still really enjoyed this book but it would be nice to have a bit more individual characterization.

  7. Just wanted to contribute to your discussion of the Spider-Woman, Spider-Gwen, etc “pocket” of the Marvel Universe. While these books may not sell very well in print, there is a good amount of talk regarding digital sales on these titles (as well as other Marvel and DC low-selling “critical darlings). Digital comics in general seem to be very popular with people who want to read comics, but prefer not to shop at a LCS, for whatever reason(s). Since the Big Two don’t publicize their digital sales numbers, we can’t know for sure.

    My guess is that, though we can’t see the numbers, these types of titles are more than making up for their low print runs on Comixology and other digital comics providers.

    here is a great article on this very topic:

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