Beat JENeration #025: Rules, follow them or Why I will never leave the house without wearing a bra again and why you shouldn’t either.

Beat JENeration #025: Rules, follow them or Why I will never leave the house without wearing a bra again and why you shouldn’t either.

Leaving the house without a bra on is never a good idea.

Not that I do it often, but there’s been a couple times. And it’s just really playing with fate.

Some of you are shocked (a few of you pervs maybe even titillated), but the moms out there know this is just a thing that happens. Motherhood is a helluva lot of personal growth bringing many joys, blah, blah, blah, but let me tell you a secret — it also makes you stop giving a shit. It’s partly because you realize what’s really important in life, but mostly it’s because you spent a great many hours showing your junk off to many, many strangers, while in the worst shape of your life. And it’s not like ridiculous pain or fear or heavy-duty drugs were the gateway to flashing your nethers to every person in scrubs (and maybe your mother-in-law too), it’s because modesty isn’t as important as getting the pregnancy over with.

“Yes baby, I want to meet you, but mostly I want you off my fucking bladder….and I want to sleep on my stomach again”.

(BTW, sleeping on your stomach is something I was never able to get back AND it’s been 16 years).

This isn’t a mommy blog, so don’t worry, I’ll wrap it up.

Long story slightly shorter, moms may seem to regain effort in their outward appearance by the time the shorties reach school-age, but fatigue is clearly a long game and when given the choice between getting yourself or your spawn out the door in a timely and presentable manner, it sometimes makes the most sense to just throw on a sweats (more than likely the stained loungewear type rather than some sort of sporty athleisure pre-meditated errand-running selection) and throw everyone in the minivan. We all know sweatshirts make bras optional in situations where you won’t be jostling around too much in public.  Continue reading “Beat JENeration #025: Rules, follow them or Why I will never leave the house without wearing a bra again and why you shouldn’t either.”

So Long and Thanks for the Fish, Man #027: Three Wishes for Aladdin…

So Long and Thanks for the Fish, Man #027: Three Wishes for Aladdin…

Image result for aladdinBy now we’ve all seen the “Extended first look” leaked out for Disney’s latest rehashed classic churned-and-burned into a CGI monstrosity, Aladdin. And far be it from me to bury the lead:

It looked almost palatable until Will Smith’s Genie farted out of the lamp.

The movie has a lot going for it on paper. Director Guy Ritchie — notable to nerds first for his Tarantino-by-way-of-the-UK Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels, and Snatch, and later for his turn on Downey-led Sherlock Holmes movies that weren’t half bad. The principle cast, Smith aside, is far less white than one might have feared in the day and age of actually casting things to be true to the source. Heck, even the teeny-tiny-tid-bits of scenery we’ve seen has been lavishly lit and detailed to-the-nines. And while I personally had not seen the The Jungle Book or Beauty and the Beast remakes… my wife and oldest kid have, and they said they were good. Maybe not “great” how my generation once recalled the original animated features mind you, but I’d wholly accept “good” for Aladdin, in part merely to match it’s CGI-siblings in the Hall of Unjustifiable Cash Grabs.

But then… hoo boy. The Genie.

Cooler heads in my social media feeds gently cooed to give it a chance, and denote we’ve not really even seen how things will look. The only taste of Big Willie was a mere 5 seconds of awkward half-introduction. And certainly we can’t extrapolate the quality of the final film from such a hot-take.

But, yes, we can.  Continue reading “So Long and Thanks for the Fish, Man #027: Three Wishes for Aladdin…”

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #025: Times Are Always A-Changin’, by Mike Gold

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #025: Times Are Always A-Changin’, by Mike Gold

It appears that those of us living in the bucolic, yet myopic state of Connecticut will be able to buy weed on the way to a gay wedding – both sanctioned by law.

As Mr. Zimmerman said, the times they are a-changin’. They’re always a-changin’, back and forth, three steps forward and two steps back. But these days they’re changing at a much faster pace. 60 years ago, Lenny Bruce said “Marijuana will be legal someday, because the many law students who now smoke pot will one day be Congressmen and they will legalize it to protect themselves.” Well, he was mistaken about the timing – President Clinton said he smoked weed when he was in school but he didn’t inhale. I am one of the few who believe him: Bill was such a wimp that he probably didn’t inhale. Besides, he already had the munchies.

A decade later President Obama said he did inhale, but his admission did not change his position on tossing kids in prison and destroying their lives for something as comparatively innocuous as marijuana. Continue reading “Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #025: Times Are Always A-Changin’, by Mike Gold”

With Further Ado #029: Seeing Red for St. Valentine’s Day

With Further Ado #029: Seeing Red for St. Valentine’s Day

I’m seeing red for St. Valentine’s Day. No, I’m not upset. I’m actually pretty happy (and madly in love). What I mean is that when I walk into a drug store or a department store, there’s a lot of red driving their Valentine marketing messages. And when I walk into Wal-Mart to grab those DC 100 Page Super Spectaculars (they are pretty good!), it’s especially overwhelming.

But maybe I should just go with it. In fact, upon reflection, I’ve always loved the many Silver Age covers that sport red backgrounds.   I know that the legendary DC editor Julie Schwartz always thought purple covers (especially featuring gorillas) sold more comics, but I have to believe that someone back in the 60s felt the same way about red covers.  Continue reading “With Further Ado #029: Seeing Red for St. Valentine’s Day”

Preview Review for the week of 2/13/2018: Mister Miracle Trade Paperback by King and Gerads

Preview Review for the week of 2/13/2018: Mister Miracle Trade Paperback by King and Gerads

Hey there!  Welcome to the latest installment of Preview Reviews.  This is where we give advanced glimpses at some of the comics that will be coming out this Wednesday.

This is a special edition of Preview Reviews. Normally we are very careful to keep our analysis spoiler free, and we have not done a collected trade before, but we are making exceptions to both those rules for this book.

This week’s preview comic is the collected trade paperback of  Mister Miracle from Tom King and Mitch Gerads, published by DC Comics. This series was so special that it requires further analysis and this collected edition allows people who did not read it in single issue fashion the opportunity to read it all at once. Also, I will just read it all again, and I did, … for you.

Here we go…

Continue reading “Preview Review for the week of 2/13/2018: Mister Miracle Trade Paperback by King and Gerads”

Brainiac On Banjo #026: The Doom Patrol – For Misfits Who Rock

Brainiac On Banjo #026: The Doom Patrol – For Misfits Who Rock

“Embargo.” That sounds like an old person’s muscular issue.

It’s also a word imposed upon us overwrought critics that means “here’s something really cool but you can’t tell anybody about it for a couple weeks.” Most of the people who have access to this stuff want to shout to all those within reading distance, particularly if the material either really impresses us or really pisses us off. But a deal is a deal. The embargo on coverage of the new Doom Patrol series premiering later this week on DC Universe was lifted at 9 AM Pacific this morning, so it’s off to the races for those of us who had been professionally tongue-tied.

I appreciated one of the first lines uttered in the first episode: “More teevee superheroes. Just what the world needs.” I can dig it. But the Doom Patrol wasn’t a typical superhero comic book in any of its various incarnations since its launch by DC Comics in the spring of 1963. And several of its more recent incarnations raised the bar on weird. The question is, how to you port all of that over to the small screen?

Perhaps a better question is “since the DC Universe service really upped the ante with Robin screaming ‘Fuck Batman!’ in the first episode of their Titans series, does The Doom Patrol continue this trend?”

Yup. It sure does. Nudity ­– slightly more than that which Janet Jackson offered us some time ago that blinded hordes of small children forevermore – enters the show a mere five minutes into the first episode. The first fuck (I’m referring to the word used in dialog and not the act) comes in around the 15-minute mark. The tone for the show is set rather dark and very weird.  Continue reading “Brainiac On Banjo #026: The Doom Patrol – For Misfits Who Rock”

Everything We Read This Week – 02/06/2019

Everything We Read This Week – 02/06/2019

Welcome back to Everything We Read This Week.  This is the place that we make our weekly trip through this week’s pull-list. It features mostly spoiler-free brief analysis and commentary of each book.

This was a fantastic week for comic books. There were some very high quality books out there for all types of readers. There were some great new series that started and a couple that ended. Remember to find what you like, GO OUT AND FIND SOME COMICS TO READ!! They are good for you.

We reviewed books from DC, Marvel, Image, Ahoy, Dark Horse, and Dynamite this week. As always, we hope you might find what we say interesting enough to try some of these comics.

Also, Don’t forget to check our hotlist of new books debuting this month over here. You will see books that we were looking forward to with the designation Hot #1 by them. There are a few of them out this week and they are really good.

DISCLAIMER: 

There is a 4 star rating system. It is simple and not to be taken too seriously as everyone gets their own impressions of art. These ratings are just to give our readers an idea of what we thought of the book, and they will be on the generous side normally. So don’t expect to see a lot of 1 Stars. After all, it’s not often that you have a bad book on your pull-list.

The rating system is as follows:

Great

 Good

 OK

 Not Good

Also look for the book we deemed Favorite Book of the Week. It is the comic that we like the most this week. The criteria are difficult to pin down, but suffice to say it is a book that moved us.

And here are the books we read in alphabetical order:

Continue reading “Everything We Read This Week – 02/06/2019”

Spotlight Interview: Talking about Cupid’s Arrows with Thom Zahler

Spotlight Interview: Talking about Cupid’s Arrows with Thom Zahler

We recently had the opportunity to talk to writer and cartoonist Thomas F. Zahler about his current projects, his thoughts on his craft, and Pop Culture topics.

If you are not familiar with his work, Thom, a graduate of The Kubert School, has had a successful career in comics as a writer, artist, letterer and cartoonist. He has also written for television, including the Ultimate Spider-Man show on Disney XD. He has published a lot of his creator owned comics through IDW Enterprises, including Love and Capes, Long Distance, and Time and Vine.  Thom has also worked on comics for other licensed properties, notably My Little Pony from IDW. You can find some links to Thom’s work at the end of this interview.

Beginning in 2017, Thom published a weekly episodic comic strip on Line Webtoons, called Warning Label. He then collected that story in a printed edition that was funded through Kickstarter last year.

We wanted to catch up with him about his latest project, Cupid’s Arrows, which is set to premiere on Line Webtoons next week.

About Cupid’s Arrows:

Pop Culture Squad: Can you tell us what Cupid’s Arrows is about?

Thom Zahler: It re-imagines Cupids as two-person hitman teams. The idea is that both Cupids on the team have to shoot their targets to get a couple to fall in love, and the story follows a particular team of Cupids named Rick and Lora, who we see go on a number of missions. We also see that they may have a budding relationship with each other, which is not permitted among Cupids.

PCS: What is the inspiration behind this project? Continue reading “Spotlight Interview: Talking about Cupid’s Arrows with Thom Zahler”

So Long and Thanks for the Fish, Man #026: If I had a million dollars…

So Long and Thanks for the Fish, Man #026: If I had a million dollars…

The other day over on the Unshaven Comics Facebook page (you DO like us, right?), I offered up a little question of the day that sparked the largest block of engagement we’d ever seen on the page. While I’d hoped that it would be some fantastic and layered comic book debate… instead it was a bit of naval gazing instead. I proposed the always-good-during-a-long-car-ride prompt: What would you do with $1,000,000? I then specified (to detract from the typical snark that might come in tow…) that the money was after all taxes were paid. So, like, you wake up tomorrow and are a million bucks richer, no strings attached. What would you do?

Well, for those that participated on our page, it was a ton of practical answers that I both understood and frowned at. Truly, my ilk have all grown up when the most common answers all revolved around paying off debt and traveling. Not that any of those answers should be frowned upon, of course. But I was more hopeful for flights of fancy.  Continue reading “So Long and Thanks for the Fish, Man #026: If I had a million dollars…”

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #024: All The President’s Frauds, Uncle Ruckus, and Dancing and Singing

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #024: All The President’s Frauds, Uncle Ruckus, and Dancing and Singing

I’ll bet you dollars to donuts you can’t remember a single program or policy expressed by any sitting president during his annual State of the Union speech. So I will not put down His Petulance King Donald the Last for spending 82 minutes before the most powerful gathering of humanity in the world without saying a goddamned thing. It’s an American tradition.

However, I am amused with the response to the overall event. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, the woman the Rabid Right has long conflated with Lucrezia Borgia, did her job sitting behind the president and awkwardly applauding at the “appropriate” times. The Right said she was condescending. The Queen of Condescending Applause, they muttered on anti-social media.

It’s not as if Leader Pelosi started screaming “you lie!” at even one of the numerous opportunities afforded to her Tuesday night. No. That particular privilege is only granted to white Republican men and thus far only against a black Democratic president. Had Cong. Pelosi just sat there and glowered at our Traitor-in-Chief, those same hypocrites would have slammed her just the same.

Exacerbating my personal amusement, 2016 presidential campaign spokeswoman Katrina Pierson (who is not presently under indictment) observed the Democratic congresswomen who wore white in tribute to the suffragists who fought to give women the vote 100 years ago were akin to members of the Ku Klux Klan. “The only thing that the Democrats uniform was missing tonight” (sic) Pierson tweeted, “is the matching hood.”

How can a person so mean be that stupid? She was joined by the Pastor Darrell C. Scott, who worked on the usurper’s presidential transition team as the liaison between the team and black pastors. He tweeted “I see the Dems have their Klan colors on tonight!” Wow. How can a preacher so stupid be that mean?

And they have the audacity to criticize those deeply troubled Virginia democrats who donned blackface and Klan kostumes. Hypocrites and fellow travelers, the bunch of them.

Scott reminds me of Uncle Ruckus of Aaron McGruder’s no-longer-retired comic strip The Boondocks. The strip has returned to public life, with the assistance of Boondocks’ animator Seung Kim. Last year, Berkeley Breathed did much the same thing when he resurrected Bloom County online on a more-often-than-not basis. I missed the strip and McGruder’s insightful (and inciteful) social and political commentary. And, yes, Uncle Ruckus is part of the relaunch.

Am I grateful to His Petulance for inspiring the return of The Boondocks? Well, no, it’s impossible for me to possess any gratitude towards a treasonous president who hangs out with the likes of Darrell Scott and Katrina Pierson, and, for that matter, who employs megaton-level liars like angry-yet-prissy Sarah Sanders. But, to be fair, the piece of shit in the oval office has inspired greatness from people such as Steven Colbert, Seth Myers, and now Aaron McGruder.

As Eric Idle wrote and sang, “If life seems jolly rotten / There’s something you’ve forgotten / And that’s to laugh and smile and dance and sing.”

Amen, Mr. Idle. Now more than ever.