Sunday, September 30, 2012

Why the Marvel Cinematic Universe is the best superhero setting

You already know that Joss Whedon's Avengers movie has been one of the most successful superhero films, both among fans and critics. Of course, the Avengers is the latest in a series of  films introducing each of the main Avengers, which were all at least fairly popular, and some blockbusters in their own right. My fellow superhero nerds can't help comparing the characters in the films with their comic forebears, wondering why certain things were left out and speculating about whether certain characters and plots from decades of comics will appear in the films' sequels. The feeling seems to be that the films are dumbed-down versions of the "true" stories as told in the comics, but I'm having trouble agreeing with that. Lately I have begun to make my peace with the fact that the films are exactly the sort of superhero entertainment I want to see. Here's why.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Book Review: Goliath; and, Don't forget your Manual of Aeronautics, "Mister" Sharp!

As you may recall, I loved the first two books of Scott Westerfeld's "Leviathan" trilogy, and the third book wraps up the trilogy admirably. Goliath, like Leviathan and Behemoth before it, is illustrated throughout by Keith Thompson. His gorgeous black-and-white images throughout the book give it a great sense of lively adventure, and his beautiful, full-color illustration for the inside covers (above) is just as vibrant and evocative as the ones he did for the first two novels. As you might expect from the third novel of a trilogy, the stakes have never been higher for Alek and Deryn, as they race on board the Leviathan on a mission that may be the last chance for peace before the war gets out of control.