Previously you heard from TRM about her loves and unloves, and Cartoon Sara shared her origin story. I thought it was time to tell you a little more about me. I love media. Movies, TV, books, comics, podcasts…I’m a consumer. In this arena, wanted to share a few things that are giving me particular joy right now. Here’s what’s currently making my world spin.
Matt Fraction and Kelly Sue DeConnick-
So, um….I have sort of unwittingly become a Fraction/DeConnick household fan. I have been reading Hawkeye and Captain Marvel for months, (and The Goog has gotten me hooked on FF as well). Initially I was drawn in by the cover art and character redesign of both Hawkeye and Captain Marvel. Seriously, even if you don’t want to read them, check out the amazing work of artists David Aja (who recently won 2 Eisners, including one for best cover artist) and Joe Quinones. Once I started reading, I went into mass consumption mode, reading all the available issues of these two books. What I didn’t know for weeks while I was reading these two books is that these two writers are married! So clearly a super talented household, and I bet they have some really cool art in their house.
Hawkeye is a super fun read that uses non-linear storytelling, well thought out art, and character development to tell the stories of what Hawkeye does when he’s not being an Avenger. Fraction reboots the character in a way that makes the story accessible whether you have back knowledge of Hawkeye and the Avengers or not. Added bonus, Clint Barton is not the only Hawkeye (Hawkguy?) whose story is told…
Captain Marvel, is especially exciting as it’s a Marvel lady hero book written by a lady! The way DeConnick handles her female characters is great. They are real…have close relationships, mentor each other, and talk about more than the guys in their lives (think passing the Bechdel test). DeConnick herself has has something she calls “the sexy lamp test”. If as a writer you can replace any of your female characters with a sexy lamp (I imagine the one from A Christmas Story), then perhaps you should rethink your approach to said female character. There are no sexy lamps in this book, only awesome women.
Welcome to Night Vale-
I walk about 4 miles each day for my work commute. During these walks I listen to podcasts. I have the usual assortment of This American Life, Stuff You Should Know, and Radio Lab (walking and learning is where it’s at), but recently I picked up Welcome to Night Vale. Radio host Cecil Baldwin keeps you up to date on all the happenings in the fictional desert town of Night Vale. Think ‘Chris in the Morning’ from Northern Exposure if Cicely, Alaska was founded by HP Lovecraft. Cecil’s evening broadcasts keep you updated on all the goings on with the Sheriff’s Secret Police, the local hooded figures, and any recent occurrences down at Radon Canyon. There is also a dog park, but we don’t talk about that. Sounds weird? Well it is…but it’s also funny, and sort of oddly soothing. I will admit that during the first few episodes I wasn’t sure I liked it..but give it time. Like many endeavors, the start is a little rocky, but as Cecil finds his groove, and you start to learn more about Night Vale and it’s local characters you find yourself getting sucked in (to the bottomless maw of unspeakable horror) to the story. Episode 13: A Story About You is particularly enjoyable. Other favorites include episode 3- Station Management, episode 16- The Phone Call, and the two part Episode 19- The Sand Storm.
Note: this podcast has become very popular with the Hannibal fandom. I’m not currently watching Hannibal (I’ll catch it on netflix), but if someone could give me some spoiler free information about that, I would be interested to know more about the connection.
Hopefully this has been enough make you curious to learn more about this podcast, but seriously, do not even think about the dog park.
Poor The Goog. He’s had to listen to my deny that Agent Coulson was dead since the lights went up in the theater after we saw The Avengers movie. Of course now we know that Coulson reappears, and this character will soon be heading up the upcoming TV series Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D (starts Tuesday Sept. 24 on ABC).
Why do I like Agent Coulson? Thing is, I am never going to be able to relate to being a super soilder, or an assassin/spy, and especially not a billionaire, genius, playboy, philanthropist. But you know what I can relate to? Managing people. Trying to build teams. And being a fanboy(girl). I know that tired smile he plasters on when dealing with Tony Stark. I can relate to taking direction from someone else to get something accomplished. And who hasn’t said the goofiest thing possible when meeting someone you so greatly admire. Phil Coulson is where us regular folks can see ourselves more easily, he’s the entry point into a universe where just about everyone is “super” in some way. Of course, being a high level S.H.I.E.L.D agent is nothing to sneeze at, but it’s a level of extraordinary that feels accessible.
There is a huge fandom around Agent Coulson, a fandom that takes some credit for resurrecting this character. Is it true? Who knows, but it feels good to think non-industry folks can have some influence and keep their touchpoint in the picture, so to speak.
So, if you ever see me out and about and want to talk about any of these things…please do! Yup, any of these things…except for the dog park.