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The Comics Canon

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The Comics Canon is the podcast that reads, reviews, and renders judgment on the greatest comic book stories of yesterday and today. Each episode, Curt Holman and Kevin Moreau take a critical and completely subjective look at one of the biggest stories and most seminal moments in the medium's history, as they decide: Does this belong in the pantheon of classic and iconic tales known as ... The Comics Canon?

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The Comics Canon is the podcast that reads, reviews, and renders judgment on the greatest comic book stories of yesterday and today. Each episode, Curt Holman and Kevin Moreau take a critical and completely subjective look at one of the biggest stories and most seminal moments in the medium's history, as they decide: Does this belong in the pantheon of classic and iconic tales known as ... The Comics Canon?

iTunes Ratings

64 Ratings
Average Ratings
58
4
0
0
2

Good educational podcast

By jeremyfrankly - May 02 2016
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I didn’t know a lot about comics coming into this, and this was a good primer

Needed this.

By Mexibro 69 - Apr 09 2016
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They touch new stuff/old stuff. Comic newbie here, needed this. My comic Sherpas, thank you!

iTunes Ratings

64 Ratings
Average Ratings
58
4
0
0
2

Good educational podcast

By jeremyfrankly - May 02 2016
Read more
I didn’t know a lot about comics coming into this, and this was a good primer

Needed this.

By Mexibro 69 - Apr 09 2016
Read more
They touch new stuff/old stuff. Comic newbie here, needed this. My comic Sherpas, thank you!
Cover image of The Comics Canon

The Comics Canon

Latest release on Jan 08, 2020

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The Comics Canon is the podcast that reads, reviews, and renders judgment on the greatest comic book stories of yesterday and today. Each episode, Curt Holman and Kevin Moreau take a critical and completely subjective look at one of the biggest stories and most seminal moments in the medium's history, as they decide: Does this belong in the pantheon of classic and iconic tales known as ... The Comics Canon?

Rank #1: Episode 96 – Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars (1984-85)

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The all-powerful Beyonder transports some of Earth's mightiest heroes and villains to a patchwork planet known as Battleworld, conveniently outfitted with high-tech ships and fortresses! His one command: "Slay all your enemies and all you desire shall be yours!" Thus begins one of comics' first and most famous multi-part crossover epics: Secret Wars, written by Marvel Comics editor in chief Jim Shooter and drawn by Mike Zeck and Bob Layton!

Conceived to support a line of Mattel toys, this 12-part series pits members of the Avengers, X-Men and Fantastic Four against such heavy hitters as Doctor Doom, Magneto, and the Devourer of Worlds himself, Galactus! Alliances are formed, schemes are hatched, battles are fought, and many plotlines are brought up and then abandoned!

Join us as we answer the burning questions: Can Curt and Kevin find meaningful things to say about an overlong slugfest aimed squarely at young children? And can this landmark comics event emerge victorious in that Contest of Champions known as … The Comics Canon?

In This Episode!

  • Martin Scorsese vs. the MCU
  • Jim Shooter's problematic female characters
  • Where did these two supervillains come from?!!
  • Volcana is totally Kevin's type
  • "Some of my best friends are mutants!"
  • Doctor Doom's space-age bachelor pad
  • We need to talk about Klaw
  • Chekhov's lightning bolt
  • Is this the worst comic we've ever reviewed?
  • Asgardian Wars
  • Contest of Champions (2015)
  • Secret Warriors V1: Nick Fury: Agent of Nothing

Join us in two weeks on Wednesday (new comic book day!) as we review a multi-part crossover epic featuring Reed Richards, Doctor Doom, Molecule Man and a mysterious planet known as Battleworld! Yes, it’s Jonathan Hickman and Esad Ribic’s Secret Wars from 2015!

Until then, be the envy of your Battleworld fortress with our snazzy Comics Canon merchandise!

Last but not least, please help us spread the word! Rate us on Apple Podcasts, send us an email, and hit us up on Twitter or Facebook! We may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Oct 29 2019

1hr 16mins

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Rank #2: Episode 57 – The Infinity Gauntlet (With C.D. Brown)

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin welcome filmmaker and author C.D. Brown as they wrap up their preparations for Avengers: Infinity War with a look at the landmark limited series The Infinity Gauntlet by Jim Starlin, George Perez and Ron Lim, published by Marvel Comics!

 Oh, crap! Thanos the mad Titan has the six infinity gems, granting him dominion over the mind, the soul, space, time, power and reality itself! And in an attempt to please Death herself, he’s eradicated half of all life everywhere!

 Can the assembled might of Earth’s heartiest heroes, cosmic champions and assorted space gods possibly be enough to outwit this omnipotent oppressor? And can this mind-bending saga gain the favor of our own Living Tribunal and gain entry into that pantheon of power-packed periodicals known as … The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

Join us in two weeks as we look ahead to the May 18 release of Deadpool 2 with a look at With Great Power Comes Great Coincidence! from Deadpool #11 and In the Hands of the Hunter! from Amazing Spider-Man #47!

Until then, please rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Apr 25 2018

1hr 19mins

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Rank #3: Episode 46 – Kingdom Come

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin prepare for the long-awaited release of Justice League with (what else?) a discussion of a kinda/sorta Justice League story: the acclaimed 1996 battle-of-the-superheroes miniseries Kingdom Come, written by Mark Waid, painted by Alex Ross, and published by DC Comics!

In the not-too-distant future, a new generation of super-powered beings has taken the place of the Justice League. But these reckless “heroes” are even more of a menace than the villains they face, and millions of innocents pay the price when one super-battle results in the devastation of the American Midwest!

Wonder Woman coaxes a reluctant Superman out of self-imposed exile to reunite the Justice League. But Batman refuses the call, and the heroes clash over differing ideologies. Meanwhile, Lex Luthor and the U.N. have their own ideas for how to deal with this growing crisis—and one of them involves a nuclear bomb!

Can these costumed crusaders put aside their differences, end the threat of these metahuman miscreants, and avert atomic annihilation? And can they win the keys to that kingdom of caped champions known as … The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

Join us in two weeks as we prepare for the first season of Hulu’s Runaways adaptation with a discussion of Runaways: Pride and Joy!

Until then, please rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and  we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Nov 08 2017

1hr 22mins

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Rank #4: Episode 44 – Planet Hulk

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin prepare for the Nov. 2 release of Thor: Ragnarok with the first of three action-packed installments! The month of #Ragnaroktober kicks off with a spirited discussion of Greg Pak’s swords, sandals and sci-fi epic Planet Hulk … specifically, The Incredible Hulk # 92-95 and 103-105, published by Marvel Comics!

Exiled into space by the brain trust known as the Illuminati, the Hulk ends up on war-torn Sakaar, forced to fight in the arena of the tyrannical Red King! Is he, as some suspect, the storied savior known as the Sakaarson … or could he be the whispered weapon of mass destruction known as the Worldbreaker?

Can the green-skinned gladiator and his warbound allies survive against wildebots, spikes and the Silver Savage and overthrow this deranged despot? And can they fight their way into the winner’s circle of that cosmic Colosseum known as … the Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

Join us next week as #Ragnaroktober rolls on with a special bonus episode! Straight from the Comics Canon vaults, for the first time anywhere, we share our pilot/proof of concept episode on Walt Simonson’s Thor debut, The Ballad of Beta Ray Bill!

And then, in two weeks’ time, it’s the second part of a Simonson twofer, as we discuss the writer-artist’s fiery conclusion to the Surtur Saga, Ragnarok and Roll!

Until then, please rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and  we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Oct 11 2017

1hr 14mins

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Rank #5: Episode 83 – Watchmen Part 1: Issues 1-3

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin start the clock, kicking off a four-part exploration of one of the most acclaimed comic book series of all time with a look at Watchmen #1-3, written by Alan Moore, drawn by Dave Gibbons, and published by DC Comics!

In an alternate-reality version of 1985, a man named Edward Blake is thrown to his death from his penthouse apartment. Investigating this Manhattan murder mystery, the faceless vigilante known as Rorschach discovers that Blake was once the government-sanctioned crimefighter called the Comedian!

Fearing that someone may be targeting former costumed adventurers, Rorschach attempts to warn his onetime allies—Dan “Nite Owl” Dreiberg, Adrian “Ozymandias” Veidt, Laurie Jon “Doctor Manhattan” Osterman and his live-in girlfriend, Laurie “Silk Spectre” Juspeczyk. But Rorschach’s warnings seem far-fetched, until the godlike Doctor Manhattan is accused of causing cancer in his friends and enemies—and abandons Earth for Mars!

With America’s atomic protector gone, can President Richard Nixon prevent an impending nuclear conflict? And will our protagonists live long enough to retire to that home for hidebound heroes known as … The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

  • The kid gloves come off!
  • Watchmen’s Charlton Comics roots
  • The signature trope of Watchmen
  • Why is he called The Comedian when he doesn’t tell any jokes?
  • What kind of person would want to become a costumed vigilante?
  • Tales of the Black Freighter: The feel-good book of the year!
  • A surprise menage-a-trois
  • “Threatening man buns”
  • Citizen Kane—the Watchmen of movies!
  • Peter Cannon, Thunderbolt

Join us in two weeks as our four-part series continues with a look as issues 4-6!

Until then, why not peruse our new spring line of Comics Canon merchandise? We also invite you to check out the King Krackle digital brushes from our friends at Category 4!

Last but not least, please be so kind as to rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

May 01 2019

1hr 21mins

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Rank #6: Episode 4 - Batman: The Dark Knight Returns

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In this episode, “Miller March” kicks off with a bang as Curt and Kevin don their surgical scrubs to dissect Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, writer/artist Frank Miller’s celebrated deconstruction of everyone’s favorite Caped Crusader!

Mar 02 2016

1hr 14mins

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Rank #7: Episode 49 – Batman: The War of Jokes and Riddles

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin return to Gotham City to unwrap the riddle of Batman: The War of Jokes and Riddles, by Tom King, Mikel Janin and Clay Mann, published by DC Comics!

The Dark Knight Detective has popped the question to his “purr-fect” match, the beguiling cat burglar known as Catwoman. But before his feline foil can answer, he must unburden himself of a terrible secret—an especially dark night from early in his crime-fighting career.

The Caped Crusader’s two most dangerous enemies, the Joker and the Riddler, have gone to war, with the streets of Gotham as their battleground. The city’s supervillain community has taken up sides, with its citizens quite literally caught in the crossfire, along with the tragic figure known as … Kite Man?

Can the World’s Greatest Detective suss out a solution to this pernicious puzzle before the entire city is torn asunder? And can this criminal conflict win top billing on that comedy club marquee of magnificence known as … The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

Join us in two weeks as we celebrate our two-year anniversary and our 50th official episode with Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ landmark Superman tale, For the Man Who Has Everything!

Until then, please rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Jan 03 2018

1hr 10mins

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Rank #8: Episode 67 – Ultimate Spider-Man: Venom

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin prime the pump for the Oct. 5 release of the Venom feature film with a discussion of the sinister symbiote’s origin story -- that is, as portrayed in issues 33-39 of Ultimate Spider-Man by Brian Michael Bendis and Mark Bagley, published by Marvel Comics!

Peter Parker’s childhood friend Eddie Brock reveals that their fathers were working on a cancer-fighting super-suit shortly before they died in a mysterious plane crash years earlier. When Peter investigates, the suit bonds with him, making him more powerful, and soon attempts to turn him into a homicidal monster!

When the suit bonds with a vengeful Eddie Brock, can Peter hope to prevail against this stronger, bloodthirstier version of himself -- and save his friend in the process? And can he swing his way into that worldwide web of comic book stories known as … The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

Join us in two weeks as we return to the Spider-corner of the Ultimate universe to discuss the origin of that other popular web-slinger, Miles Morales, in Ultimate Comics: Spider-Man!

Until then, please rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and  we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Sep 12 2018

1hr 16mins

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Rank #9: Episode 39 – The Uncle Scrooge Episode (With Alonso Duralde)

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin welcome special guest Alonso Duralde of the Linoleum Knife podcast, The Wrap and What the Flick?! to discuss three stories—The Seven Cities of Cibola, The Lemming With the Locket, and Tralla La—by classic Uncle Scrooge creator, writer and artist Carl Barks!

The world’s wealthiest mallard, joined by his nephews Donald Duck and Junior Woodchucks Huey, Dewey and Louie, sets out in search of seven legendary golden cities, an ancient civilization hidden in the Himalayas, and far-flung Herringtail, Norway, and runs afoul of the dastardly Beagle Boys—and one very elusive lemming!

Can a poor umptillion-fabulatillionaire prevail against those who would seek to relieve him of his wealth?  And can he attain that prize greater than any gold, more rewarding than a swim in any money bin—entry into that billionaire boys’ club known as … The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

The Comics Canon is presented with the support of Creative Loafing Atlanta, home of such podcasts as Mo Audio and Dish on the Dish.

Join us in two weeks as we get ready for another Netflix show (Marvel’s The Defenders) with the death and resurrection of Elektra in Frank Miller’s Daredevil!

Until then, please rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Aug 02 2017

1hr 3mins

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Rank #10: Episode 50 – Superman: For the Man Who Has Everything

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin celebrate their two-year podcasting anniversary with a special birthday two-fer, as they discuss the classic Superman birthday story For The Man Who Has Everything by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons from Superman Annual #11, published by DC Comics, as well as its animated adaptation from Justice League Unlimited!

Batman, Robin and Wonder Woman arrive at Superman’s arctic hideaway to wish him a happy birthday, but find the Man of Steel immobilized by a sinister-looking plant known as the Black Mercy. Before they can figure out a plan of action, they’re confronted by the alien warlord Mongul, who reveals that Superman has been put into a coma, dreaming of an idyllic existence as a husband, father and geologist on his home planet of Krypton!

Can our overmatched heroes stop Mongul from conquering the Earth? Can the Man of Tomorrow wake up from his seductive fantasy in time to save them? And can this fearless foursome gain entry into that Fortress of Solitude known as … The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

Join us in two weeks as we prepare for the release of the hotly anticipated Black Panther adaptation with a discussion of Black Panther: The Client, by Christopher Priest and Mark Texeira!

Until then, please rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Jan 17 2018

1hr 4mins

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Rank #11: Episode 65 – The Death of Superman

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin turn their attention to one of the most famous Superman stories of all time—the headline-grabbing, multi-part event storyline The Death of Superman, written and drawn by a rotating cast of creators and published by DC Comics!

The hulking, mysterious figure who comes to be known as Doomsday arrives out of nowhere, destroying everything in his path! Not even the Justice League can slow this raging brute as he plods toward Metropolis, leaving death and ruin in his wake! Only one man has a chance against this inhuman monster. But is even Superman up to the task?

Can the Man of Steel stop Doomsday’s relentless onslaught without paying the ultimate price? (Well, the title of the story is a dead giveaway.) And will his name be added to that memorial of monumental epics known as … The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

Join us in two weeks as we explore the topic of death from a different angle with a look at cartoonist Roz Chast’s graphic memoir, Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant?

Until then, please rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Aug 15 2018

1hr 5mins

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Rank #12: Episode 8 Civil War

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WHOSE SIDE ARE YOU ON? In this episode, Curt and Kevin charter a school bus to Stamford, Connecticut to weigh the pros and cons of the Superhero Registration Act, the ethics of cloning a dead god, and the problems of giant crossover events as they (rather civilly) discuss the 2006-2007 Marvel limited series Civil War. In the wake of a national tragedy, a shocked and fearful public calls for the regulation of super-powered beings. Iron Man leads a group of heroes in favor of licensing, proper training, and (presumably) having government holidays off, while Captain America heads up a resistance movement not eager to take its marching orders from politicians. Will this clash of titans end in blood and tears, with friends and families forever rent asunder? Or will our Founding Fathers come together to deem it a revolutionary tale worthy of admission into that Land of the Free known as … The Comics Canon?

Apr 27 2016

59mins

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Rank #13: Episode 35 – Scott Pilgrim vs. The Comics Canon

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin are joined by guest vocalist Ryan Lucas as they discuss the first two volumes of the Scott Pilgrim series: Scott Pilgrim’s Precious Little Life and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, written and drawn by Bryan Lee O’Malley and published by Oni Press! Scott Pilgrim, aimless 23-year-old bassist for Toronto band Sex Bob-Omb, is dating 17-year-old high school student Knives Chau when he falls hard for delivery girl Ramona Flowers. But in order to date her, he’ll have to break up with Knives—and, oh yeah, defeat seven of Ramona’s exes in hand-to-hand combat! Can Scott get his act together long enough to help Sex Bob-Omb score a prestigious gig opening for his ex-girlfriend Envy Adams—and vanquish the League of Ramona’s Evil Ex-Boyfriends? And can he book himself and the band into that Great Gig in the Sky known as … The Comics Canon? Things Discussed in This Episode: • Is Scott Pilgrim kind of a jerk? • Do these books pass the Bechdel Test? • The Flying Burrito Brothers’ Gilded Palace of Sin • Is Kevin really Scott Pilgrim? • Curt hates the name of our letters segment • Our first negative review • Random House vs. Houghton Mifflin • Zot! The Complete Black and White Collection: 1987-1991 • Kamikaze Vol. 1: Run Rabbit Run • Love and Rockets: Maggie the Mechanic The Comics Canon is presented with the support of Creative Loafing Atlanta, home of such podcasts as Mo Audio and Dish on the Dish. Join us in two weeks as we discuss another fictional league—Alan Moore and Kevin O’Neill’s League of Extraordinary Gentlemen! Until then, please rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Jun 07 2017

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Rank #14: Episode 5 Daredevil: Born Again

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In this episode, “Miller March” continues as Curt and Kevin ring in the second season of Netflix’s Daredevil series by applying their keen extrasensory senses to Frank Miller and David Mazzucchelli’s classic tale of revenge, redemption and overheated Christian symbolism. When his junkie ex-girlfriend sells his secret identity for a fix (we’ve all been there, right, fellas?), Matt Murdock finds himself homeless and penniless as he faces off against the Kingpin of Crime, a murderous psychotic, a roided-up super-soldier, and one very unfriendly health-care professional. Is this the end of everyone’s favorite blind attorney turned protector of Hell’s Kitchen? Or can ol’ Hornhead overcome these trials and tribulations to win a favorable verdict in the People’s Court known as … The Comics Canon? Things discussed in this episode: The lamest rogue’s gallery in all of comics? (Cough) Stilt-Man (Cough) Karen Page’s poor negotiation skills “The Passion of the Matt” and heavy-handed Catholic imagery Leave my credit score alone, you monster! “There is no corpse.” Lois the Killer Nun! Nuke? Seriously? It’s an Avengers thing … you wouldn’t understand. Why kids don’t play make-believe as Daredevil Join us in two weeks as we shamble down to rural Georgia to pass sentence on The Walking Dead: Safety Behind Bars and The Heart’s Desire! Until then, please rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Mar 16 2016

1hr 13mins

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Rank #15: Episode 85 – Watchmen Part 3: Issues 7-9

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Like sands through the hourglass, our four-part series on Watchmen continues with a look at issues #7-9 of the groundbreaking comic series written by Alan Moore, drawn by Dave Gibbons, and published by DC Comics!

As the world marches closer to the brink of nuclear war, Dan Drieberg and Laurie Juspeczyk become lovers. They also defy the nation’s ban on costumed heroes and rescue the residents of a burning building. Determined to find out who’s killing other masked adventurers, Nite Owl hatches a plan to spring Rorschach from prison, bringing the police to his front door. Just when things couldn’t get any worse, Dr. Manhattan appears and whisks Laurie away to Mars to talk, with the literal fate of the world hanging in the balance!

Can Dan and Rorschach avoid being collared by the cops? Can Laurie convince her godlike former boyfriend to save the world? Can any of them survive long enough to make it to that floating crystal palace known as ... The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

  • Spoiler and content warnings
  • The ridiculous sex scene in the Watchmen movie
  • The transformation of Dan Drieberg
  • Is Laurie Juspeczyk a strong character?
  • The Comedian and Silk Spectre: a missed opportunity
  • The relative stakes of Dan and Laurie’s epiphanies
  • Why do characters tack extra phrases onto the ends of sentences?
  • The political cartooning of “Stan Kelly”
  • A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs
  • The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury
  • Kim Stanley Robinson’s Mars Trilogy
  • Department of Corrections

Join us in two weeks as our four-part series concludes with a look as issues 10-12!

Until then, why not peruse our new spring line of Comics Canon merchandise? We also invite you to check out King Krackle from our friends at Category 4!

Last but not least, please be so kind as to rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

May 28 2019

1hr 14mins

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Rank #16: Episode 60 – Fantastic Four Part 1: The Early Years

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin launch into a four-episode deep dive into the world’s greatest comic magazine, The Fantastic Four, with a look at three key stories from the 1960s and 70s!

First up, it’s the book that started it all (and gave birth to the Marvel Universe): Fantastic Four #1! Who are these mysterious figures who answer a strange signal in the sky? Where and how did they get their fantastic abilities? And when bizarre monsters attack atomic plants across the globe, can they stop the reclusive Mole Man from destroying the surface world?

Next, it’s a race against time in Fantastic Four Annual #6! Reed Richards, Ben Grimm and Johnny Storm must brave the outlandish antimatter universe known as the Negative Zone to save the life of Susan Richards and her unborn child. But can they survive the murderous warlord Annihilus and his dreaded Arena of Execution?

After that, it’s on to the swingin’ 70s for Fantastic Four #140-141! Annihilus is back, and he’s got Susan and the Richards’ young son Franklin in his deadly clutches! To save the universe, Reed Richards pays a terrible price, resulting in The End of the Fantastic Four!

Do these fantastic fables have the pedigree to join that First Family of fabulous funnybooks known as … The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

Join us in two weeks as we time-travel into the 1980s for a look at two titanic figures—John Byrne and the world-devouring Galactus—in Fantastic Four #242-244 and #261-262!

Until then, please rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Jun 06 2018

1hr 7mins

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Rank #17: Episode 84 – Watchmen Part 2: Issues 4-6

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Like clockwork, our four-part gaze into the abyss of Watchmen continues as we analyze the hidden meanings of the inkblots contained in issues #4-6, written by Alan Moore, drawn by Dave Gibbons, published by DC Comics!

Alone on Mars, Dr. Manhattan examines his past, jumping back and forth through time as he recalls the accident that gave him his godlike powers. Back on an Earth growing increasingly fearful of atomic conflict, a homeless Laurie Juspeczyk moves in with lovestruck Dan Dreiberg and Adrian Veidt survives an assassination attempt. Meanwhile, the outlaw vigilante Rorschach, framed and arrested for the murder of the former villain Moloch, tells prison psychiatrist Malcolm Long who he is and how he came to be.

Can this overmatched analyst shake off the all-consuming darkness of his patient’s pitiless worldview? Can Curt make it through the episode with a sore throat? (Spoiler: Yes!) And can our heroes survive being thrown into that atomic disintegration chamber known as ... The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

  • The Watchmen TV show trailer
  • Manhattan and Rorschach as Superman and Batman analogues
  • Strangeness and charm
  • Chekhov’s time-lock test vault
  • The weird passivity of Dr. Manhattan
  • The fearful symmetry of Fearful Symmetry
  • Hey, that guy carrying the sign! He's ...!
  • The cultural influence of Rorschach
  • The Watchmen Hostess Fruit Pie parody ad
  • Saturday Morning Watchmen
  • The Whimper of Whipped Dogs by Harlan Ellison
  • The Reversible Man by Alan Moore
  • The Death of the Red Mask from Animal Man # 7
  • Judgment Day and Other Stories: Illustrated by Joe Orlando

Join us in two weeks as we march toward Armageddon with a look as issues 7-9!

Until then, why not peruse our new spring line of Comics Canon merchandise? We also invite you to check out King Krackle from our friends at Category 4!

Last but not least, please be so kind as to rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

May 15 2019

1hr 6mins

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Rank #18: Episode 78 – Captain Marvel: The Thanos War

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin prepare for the March 8 debut of Captain Marvel with the first of two episodes on Marvel Comics characters with that name! First up: the Kree warrior Mar-Vell, as seen in The Thanos War from Captain Marvel Vol. 1, #27-33! This Captain Marvel was an alien soldier who became a superheroic protector of Earth in order to capitalize on a lapsed trademark. In these issues from 1973 and 74, writer and artist Jim Starlin made the character more than just a savvy bit of brand management, tapping into the counterculture of the era to give him the power of “cosmic awareness,” injecting his adventures with psychedelic flair—and introducing the world to the galactic menace of Thanos!

With the aid of professional sidekick Rick Jones and the mighty Avengers, does our groovy galactic guardian have what it takes to defeat an insane god? And can he survive the long, strange trip to that state of higher consciousness known as … The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

  • The complicated history of the name “Captain Marvel”
  • Similarities to Jack Kirby’s Fourth World
  • Why does Rick Jones have an Avengers ID?
  • Mar-Vell’s secret affair with an Avenger!
  • The Time-Mind Sync-Warp!
  • Thanos gets psychedelic, man!
  • The Infinity Gauntlet
  • Deadly Class
  • The Death of Captain Marvel
  • Nuggets: Original Artyfacts From the First Psychedelic Era, 1965-1968

Join us in two weeks as our series on the Captains Marvel continues with a look at Carol Danvers in Ms. Marvel #1 (1977) and Captain Marvel: In Pursuit of Flight!

Until then, don’t forget our snazzy Comics Canon merchandise and the King Krackle digital brushes from our friends at Category 4!

Last but not least, please be so kind as to rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Feb 20 2019

1hr 20mins

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Rank #19: Episode 82 – Batman Origins

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin mark the 1,000th issue of Detective Comics and the 80th birthday of Batman with a look back at three early milestones in the career of DC Comics’ mega-popular Caped Crusader—beginning with his first appearance (as “The Bat-Man”) in Detective Comics #27 from 1939!

From there, it’s on to the world’s best-known origin story from 1939’s Detective Comics #33! And last but not least, since a snarling Dark Knight Detective is only as good as his anarchic arch-enemy, it’s the first appearance of the Joker, from 1940’s Batman #1!

Can the World’s Greatest Detective crack the imminently solvable Case of the Chemical Syndicate, overcome the death of his parents, and survive his first encounter against the deadly Clown Prince of Crime? And can he strike terror into the hearts of the superstitious and cowardly gatekeepers of … The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

Join us in two weeks as we begin a four-part deep dive into Watchmen with a look at issues 1 through 3!

Until then, why not peruse our new spring line of Comics Canon merchandise? We also invite you to check out Mathilda: The Forces of Evil vs. the Third Grade, as well as the King Krackle digital brushes from our friends at Category 4!

Last but not least, please be so kind as to rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Apr 17 2019

52mins

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Rank #20: Episode 37 - The Spider-Man Episode

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin welcome your Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man to the Marvel Cinematic Universe with a pair of powerful Spidey Super Stories! First up, they swing into action with a discussion of one of the most famous comic stories of all time: the origin of Spider-Man in Amazing Fantasy #15! After that, it’s on to an action-packed tale of great power and great responsibility (and one of the most iconic scenes in superhero comics), as a guilt-ridden wall-crawler fights against impossible odds to save the life of his beloved Aunt May in the three-part storyline If This Be My Destiny …! from Amazing Spider-Man #31-33! Can the winded web-slinger prevail against the machinations of the mysterious Master Planner? And can he survive the cutthroat halls of academia long enough to win a ticket to that homecoming dance known as … The Comics Canon? Things Discussed in This Episode: • Actor Frank Nelson • Are you obliged to stop a thief? • The Acme Warehouse • Spider-Man’s Uncanny Valley moment • Marvel: The Untold Story by Sean Howe • Peter Parker’s true calling: costume design! • To Alcohol! • Kid Puncho, the Fighting Clown • Kind words from The Nerds Uncanny • Thor Frog from Walt Simonson’s Thor #365 • The Hood: Blood From Stones • The Return of Beta Ray Bill • Give Our Regards to the Atom-Smashers! • Kraven’s Last Hunt • Kevin’s essay on Secret Empire in Vex Mosaic • Curt’s review of Spider-Man: Homecoming The Comics Canon is presented with the support of Creative Loafing Atlanta, home of such podcasts as Mo Audio and Dish on the Dish. Join us next week for a look at the year in Marvel movie and TV adaptations (so far), and then again the week after that for a discussion of the dark side of geekdom via Evan Dorkin’s The Eltingville Club! Until then, please rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Jul 05 2017

1hr 12mins

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Episode 101 – Bone Vol. 1: Out From Boneville

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In this episode, we explore the wondrous world of Jeff Smith’s Bone (soon to be an animated Netflix series) with a look at the first installment of this beloved fantasy series: Out From Boneville, originally published by Cartoon Books!

Forced to flee their home of Boneville, cousins Fone Bone, Phoney Bone and Smiley Bone each find their way to an uncharted valley populated with adorable talking possums, a laconic red dragon, tough-as-nails Gran’ma Ben and the beautiful young woman known as Thorn.

Can our wayward cousins avoid the clutches of the fearsome Rat Creatures and their terrifying leader, the Hooded One? And can they stay out of trouble long enough to settle that uncanny valley known as ... The Comics Canon?

In This Episode!

  • What ARE the Bones, exactly?
  • Mad Magazine’s Don Martin
  • Real Men Don’t Eat Quiche
  • Where are all the plush Bone dolls?
  • Bone Vol. 5: Rock Jaw, Master of the Eastern Border
  • Batman Vol. 8: Cold Days
  • The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
  • Mouse Guard: Fall 1152

Join us in two weeks on Wednesday, New Comic Book Day, as we pivot from fantasy to horror with a look at Locke & Key Vol. 1: Welcome to Lovecraft!

Until then:

Impress your friends with our Comics Canon merchandise! Rate us on Apple Podcasts! Send us an email! Hit us up on Twitter or Facebook! And as always, thanks for listening!

Jan 08 2020

1hr 9mins

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Episode 100 – Action Comics #1, Superman #1, and the Comics Canon All-Stars!

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We all know the story: Rocket escapes exploding planet. Elderly couple adopts alien baby. Baby grows up to become the most powerful superhero of all time.

But today's Man of Steel is very different from the one we get in his first-ever adventure, as originally recounted in 1938's groundbreaking Action Comics #1—and expanded upon a year later in his own magazine, Superman #1, both published by DC Comics.

For our landmark 100th episode, we explore the origin and first appearance of Superman, one of the most beloved and iconic figures in popular culture. Can this champion of the oppressed save an innocent woman from the electric chair and foil a plot to drag the U.S. into war in Europe? And can he muscle his way into that hallowed Fortress of Solitude known as … The Comics Canon?

But wait! There's more! We also look back at our favorite canonical stories from the first 99 episodes!

In This Episode!

  • One of the best covers in comics history
  • Babies in padded cells and straitjackets
  • This Superman is a super-jerk!
  • Superman: The Unauthorized Biography by Glen Weldon
  • We need to talk about The Dark Knight Returns
  • What can you expect from the NEXT 100 episodes?

Join us in two weeks as we kick off our fifth year with a look at the first installment of Jeff Smith's charming Bone saga (coming soon to Netflix): Out From Boneville!

Until then:

Impress your friends with our Comics Canon merchandise! Rate us on Apple Podcasts! Send us an email! Hit us up on Twitter or Facebook! And as always, thanks for listening!

Dec 23 2019

1hr 12mins

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Episode 99 – Crisis on Infinite Earths Part 2: Issues 7-12

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Listen here, Anti-Monitor! Wiping out countless realities and snuffing out untold billions of lives is one thing. But when you step to the Maid of Steel ... well, now you’ve gone and made it personal!

In what may be our longest episode ever, we close the book on the epic 12-issue event that closed the book on the DC multiverse—Crisis on Infinite Earths, by Marv Wolfman and George Perez, published by DC Comics!

After a pitched battle at the dawn of time, five Earths become one, and a few redundant superheroes find themselves without a home! But the Anti-Monitor still has one trick up his metal sleeve, teleporting our world to the anti-matter universe (hey, you said there was only one universe left)!

Can the last Supermen standing and a parade of your favorite D-listers succeed against the cosmic creep with the worst name in comics? And can this landmark reality-warping series score a table at that restaurant at the end of the universe known as ... The Comics Canon?

In This Episode!

  • George Perez’s cosmic artwork
  • The Anti-Anti-Monitor
  • “How come YOU get to be Earth-1?”
  • “Weird” Al Yankovich’s “Word Crimes”
  • Plan 9 From Outer Space
  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
  • Green Lantern: The Sinestro Corps War
  • Justice League: The Darkseid War
  • 52

Join us in two weeks on Wednesday, Dec. 25, as we mark our 100th episode with a look at the origin of the first and most legendary superhero of them all in Action Comics #1!

Until then:

Impress your friends with our Comics Canon merchandise! Rate us on Apple Podcasts! Send us an email! Hit us up on Twitter or Facebook! And as always, thanks for listening!

Dec 11 2019

1hr 37mins

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Episode 98 – Crisis on Infinite Earths Part 1: Issues 1-6

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Like the animator’s giant eraser in Chuck Jones’ classic Merrie Melodies short “Duck Amuck,” a wave of anti-matter sweeps across countless realities, obliterating everything in its path until only a handful of universes are left in the epic 12-issue event Crisis on Infinite Earths, by Marv Wolfman and George Perez, published by DC Comics!

Aided by the mysterious Monitor, some of comics’ greatest heroes are all that stand between the remaining worlds and the malevolent ... um, Anti-Monitor!

Join us as we answer the burning questions: Can George Perez draw every single DC character before this crossover event is through? And can this world-changing saga survive that End of the Effing World known as ... The Comics Canon?

In This Episode!

  • The history of the DC multiverse
  • We have to talk about Pariah
  • Characters referring to other characters by their names
  • Does The Haunted Tank have a horn that plays Dixie?
  • DC: The New Frontier
  • “You’re going to die now! ... But later!”
  • The worst name in comics
  • Swamp Thing: American Gothic
  • Crisis on Multiple Earths Vol. 1
  • Six Crises by Richard Nixon (yes, really)

Join us in two weeks on Wednesday, New Comic Book Day, as this story shifts into gear, resulting in some memorable moments and the birth of a new universe in issues #7-12!

Until then:

Impress your friends with our Comics Canon merchandise! Rate us on Apple Podcasts! Send us an email! Hit us up on Twitter or Facebook! And as always, thanks for listening!

Nov 27 2019

59mins

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Episode 97 – Secret Wars (2015)

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You finally achieve your lifelong goal—absolute dominion over all of creation, not to mention the wife of your bitterest rival—only to find that godhood isn't everything you'd hoped for. We've all been there, right? Victor Von Doom certainly has, in the epic 2015 miniseries Secret Wars, by Jonathan Hickman and Esad Ribic, published by Marvel Comics!

Join us as we answer the burning questions: Can Curt and Kevin avoid getting deep in the weeds of this superhero crossover event? (Not so much.) And can this epic, world-changing series emerge triumphant in that Clash of Kings known as … The Comics Canon?

In This Episode!

  • Similarities to Game of Thrones
  • "What am I going to do with all these bullets?"
  • The thorny implications of Doom's relationship with Susan Storm
  • Weirdworld
  • Infamous Iron Man
  • House of X and Powers of X

Join us in two weeks as we continue our exploration of cosmic crossovers with the mother of all universe-obliterating epics, Crisis on Infinite Earths!

Until then:

Impress your friends with our Comics Canon merchandise! Rate us on Apple Podcasts! Send us an email! Hit us up on Twitter or Facebook! And as always, thanks for listening!

Nov 12 2019

1hr 20mins

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Episode 96 – Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars (1984-85)

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The all-powerful Beyonder transports some of Earth's mightiest heroes and villains to a patchwork planet known as Battleworld, conveniently outfitted with high-tech ships and fortresses! His one command: "Slay all your enemies and all you desire shall be yours!" Thus begins one of comics' first and most famous multi-part crossover epics: Secret Wars, written by Marvel Comics editor in chief Jim Shooter and drawn by Mike Zeck and Bob Layton!

Conceived to support a line of Mattel toys, this 12-part series pits members of the Avengers, X-Men and Fantastic Four against such heavy hitters as Doctor Doom, Magneto, and the Devourer of Worlds himself, Galactus! Alliances are formed, schemes are hatched, battles are fought, and many plotlines are brought up and then abandoned!

Join us as we answer the burning questions: Can Curt and Kevin find meaningful things to say about an overlong slugfest aimed squarely at young children? And can this landmark comics event emerge victorious in that Contest of Champions known as … The Comics Canon?

In This Episode!

  • Martin Scorsese vs. the MCU
  • Jim Shooter's problematic female characters
  • Where did these two supervillains come from?!!
  • Volcana is totally Kevin's type
  • "Some of my best friends are mutants!"
  • Doctor Doom's space-age bachelor pad
  • We need to talk about Klaw
  • Chekhov's lightning bolt
  • Is this the worst comic we've ever reviewed?
  • Asgardian Wars
  • Contest of Champions (2015)
  • Secret Warriors V1: Nick Fury: Agent of Nothing

Join us in two weeks on Wednesday (new comic book day!) as we review a multi-part crossover epic featuring Reed Richards, Doctor Doom, Molecule Man and a mysterious planet known as Battleworld! Yes, it’s Jonathan Hickman and Esad Ribic’s Secret Wars from 2015!

Until then, be the envy of your Battleworld fortress with our snazzy Comics Canon merchandise!

Last but not least, please help us spread the word! Rate us on Apple Podcasts, send us an email, and hit us up on Twitter or Facebook! We may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Oct 29 2019

1hr 16mins

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Episode 95 – Emily Carroll's Through the Woods

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In this episode, we get into the spooky spirit of Halloween with a look at Through the Woods, a collection of unsettling horror stories by cartoonist Emily Carroll, as well as a trio of chilling and inventive webcomics: Margot’s Room, Some Other Animal’s Meat, and the Eisner Award-winning When the Darkness Presses!

Through the Woods weaves a dark fantasy setting that echoes the classic horror stories of fairy tales and folklore, grounded by Carroll’s gorgeous artwork and spidery lettering, while her web stories immerse the reader in fully realized worlds that take full advantage of the medium to scratch and claw at the back of the reader’s mind. But can these eerie tales safely make their way to that remote cabin in the woods known as ... The Comics Canon?

In This Episode!

Join us in two weeks as we begin the countdown to our 100th episode with the first of a series of cataclysmic crossover events: Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars!

Until then, turn some heads with our snazzy Comics Canon merchandise! And why not accessorize with a little King Krackle from our sponsor at Category 4?

Last but not least, please help us spread the word! Rate us on Apple Podcasts, send us an email, and hit us up on Twitter or Facebook! We may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Oct 15 2019

1hr 26mins

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Episode 94 – Arkham Asylum: A Serious House on Serious Earth

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Just in time for the Oct. 4 release of Todd Phillips’ Joker movie, Curt and Kevin are joined by Atlanta actress and comics fan Jennifer Lee for a timely (and faintly explicit) discussion of the 1989 graphic novel Arkham Asylum: A Serious House on Serious Earth, by Grant Morrison and Dave McKean, published by DC Comics!

On April Fools’ Day, the inmates, led by the Joker, have taken over Arkham Asylum and taken the staff as hostages. Their one demand? That Batman join them for a lethal game of hide and seek! Meanwhile, the journal of founder Amadeus Arkham reveals the gruesome origins of Gotham City’s most notorious psychiatric facility!

Can the Caped Crusader survive a gauntlet of his deadliest enemies without going insane—if he hasn’t already? And can this strikingly illustrated tale check itself into that madhouse of sequential storytelling known as ... The Comics Canon?

In This Episode!

  • Church Going by Philip Larkin
  • The Thoth tarot deck
  • Why is Batman so uptight?
  • The fetishization of madness
  • “You can’t let someone run around blinding horses, dude!”
  • Is Batman mentally ill?
  • Violent Cases and Mr. Punch
  • Alice by Jan Svankmajer
  • Legion season 3
  • Batman: I Am Suicide
  • The Stumptown pilot
  • The Invisibles
  • Planetary
  • Castle Rock season 2

Join us in two weeks as we get into the spooky spirit of October with a look at Emily Carroll’s book of short horror comics, Through the Woods!

Until then, turn some heads with our snazzy Comics Canon merchandise! And why not accessorize with a little King Krackle from our sponsor at Category 4?

Last but not least, please help us spread the word! Rate us on iTunes, send us an email, and hit us up on Twitter or Facebook! We may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Oct 02 2019

1hr 23mins

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Episode 93 – Bastard

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In this episode, Crimewave!, our series on gritty crime comics, comes to a rollicking (and not entirely swear word-free) conclusion with the “Mommy and Clyde” graphic novel Bastard, written and drawn by Belgian cartoonist Max de Radiguès, published in America by Fantagraphics Books!

After taking part in a massive heist that targeted 52 different locations in the same city at the same time, May and her son Eugene are on the run, trying to stay ahead of the police while hiding duffel bags stuffed with cash. And if that weren’t difficult enough, they soon find themselves hunted by their fellow criminals! After a deadly confrontation, May is forced to make a decision that will change everything Eugene thought he knew about their relationship!

Can our fleeing felons elude a pair of dangerous killers long enough for May to turn the tables on the traitor who wants them dead? And can they cross the border to that remote hideout known as ... The Comics Canon?

In This Episode!

Join us in two weeks as we look ahead to the Oct. 4 release of Joker with an exploration at 1989’s controversial graphic novel Arkham Asylum: A Serious House on Serious Earth, by Grant Morrison and Dave McKean!

Until then, turn some heads with our snazzy Comics Canon merchandise! And why not accessorize with a little King Krackle from our sponsor at Category 4?

Last but not least, please help us spread the word! Rate us on iTunes, send us an email, and hit us up on Twitter or Facebook! We may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Sep 18 2019

52mins

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Episode 92 – Fatale Volume 1: Death Chases Me

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In this episode, Crimewave!, our series on gritty crime comics, rolls on with Death Chases Me, the first volume of the James Ellroy-meets-H.P. Lovecraft occult noir Fatale, written and drawn by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips, published by Image Comics!

In 1950s San Francisco, reporter Dominic Henry Raines meets with the mysterious and attractive Josephine, girlfriend of corrupt police detective Walt Booker. As Raines investigates Booker, he falls under Josephine’s spell, unaware that there’s more to his feelings for her than puppy love. And a dying Booker, investigating a series of occult murders, makes a deal with the devil. Meanwhile, in the present, Nicolas Lash meets the alluring and secretive Jo, and finds himself pursued by some familiar-looking sinister goons!

Will Raines and our sympathetic femme fatale evade the demonic forces on their trail? And will they survive their ordeal at those mountains of madness known as ... The Comics Canon?

In This Episode!

Join us in two weeks as Crimewave! concludes (at least for now) with Bastard by Max de Radiguès!

Until then, turn some heads with our snazzy Comics Canon merchandise! And why not accessorize with a little King Krackle from our sponsor at Category 4?

Last but not least, don’t be a dirty, no-good tentacle monster! Rate us on iTunes, send us an email, and hit us up on Twitter or Facebook! We may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Sep 04 2019

1hr 1min

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Episode 91 – Torso: A True Crime Graphic Novel

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In this episode, Crimewave!, our series on gritty crime comics, continues with a fictionalized account of the real, ripped-from-the-1930s-headlines case of the Mad Butcher of Kingsbury Run, co-written and “executed” by one of the biggest names in comics before he was one of the biggest names in comics: It’s Torso, by Brian Michael Bendis and Marc Andreyko, originally published by Image Comics!

Between 1935 and 1938, a mysterious figure murdered, dismembered and decapitated at least 12 victims in Cleveland, Ohio, preying on the city’s growing transient population. Against the backdrop of a corrupt city reeling from the Great Depression, Cleveland’s new safety director—former “Untouchable” Eliot Ness himself—and a pair of homicide detectives find themselves investigating a new kind of criminal: America’s first serial killer!

Can our intrepid and all-too-human protagonists solve this unsolved mystery, or will their quarry prove truly Untouchable? And can Bendis and Andreyko make it into that lineup of killer crime stories known as ... The Comics Canon?

On the docket:

Join us in two weeks as Crimewave! continues with a look at Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips’ supernatural noir, Fatale!

Until then, turn some heads with our snazzy Comics Canon merchandise! And why not accessorize with a little King Krackle from our sponsor at Category 4?

Last but not least, don’t be a rat. Rate us on iTunes, send us an email, and hit us up on Twitter or Facebook! We may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Aug 21 2019

1hr 9mins

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Episode 90 – Richard Stark’s Parker: The Hunter

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In this episode, Crimewave!, our series on gritty crime comics, continues with Darwyn Cooke's crackling adaptation of The Hunter! Beautifully illustrated in black, white and teal, this stylized revenge tale from IDW Publishing is the first in a four-part series adapting novels about the career criminal Parker by the late Donald E. Westlake, writing as Richard Stark.

Physically imposing and intense, the man known only as Parker storms into New York City in 1962, where he confronts the wife who shot him and left him for dead before hunting down the man who betrayed him.

Can our laconic lawbreaker survive a one-man war against the nationwide criminal syndicate known as The Outfit? And can he break into that impenetrable vault of graphic excellence known as … The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

  • Content warning
  • "Her corpse isn't gonna disfigure itself!"
  • The women of The Hunter
  • "Waste not, want not!"
  • Toxic masculinity heaven
  • Parker in: Home Alone!
  • Private Parts
  • Curt poses a what-if question
  • Road to Perdition
  • Point Blank
  • Flood by Andrew Vachss
  • Derec Donovan's Trigger Mortis on Kickstarter

We return in two weeks as Crimewave! rolls on with the fictionalized true-crime tale Torso, by Brian Michael Bendis and Marc Andreyko!

Until then, spiff up your wardrobe with some snazzy Comics Canon merchandise! And why not accessorize with a little King Krackle from our sponsor at Category 4?

Last but not least, we'd consider it a favor if you'd rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook! Who knows? We just may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Aug 06 2019

1hr 11mins

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Episode 89 – Sin City: The Hard Goodbye

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In this hard-boiled episode, we kick off Crimewave!, a series of episodes on gritty crime comics, complete with its own theme song! And for our money, there ain’t no better way to get things rolling than by jawing about Frank Miller’s bare-knuckled Sin City: The Hard Goodbye, published by Dark Horse Comics, see?

Here’s the thing about Basin City—it’s the kinda place where a hulking bruiser like Marv can spend a once-in-a-lifetime night of passion with an angel like Goldie, only to wake up the next morning to find she’s been murdered—and the cops are on their way to take him down for the crime!

Can our problematic protagonist prevail against crooked cops, tough-as-nails sex workers, a smirking serial killer, and the most powerful family in Sin City—not to mention his own faulty faculties? And can this black-and-white valentine to noir fiction muscle past the bouncers and make it into that den of iniquity known as ... The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

  • A brief history of crime comics
  • Content warning
  • Frank Miller’s Sin City artwork
  • The women of The Hard Goodbye
  • Lucille gets a raw deal
  • That’s an awful lot of Nancy
  • How to enjoy revenge fantasies
  • Kurt Busiek and the Punisher
  • The Sin City movie
  • Is the “lasting influence” argument a cop-out?
  • Kill or Be Killed Vol. 1-2
  • Queenpin by Megan Abbott
  • Tumor
  • The Maltese Falcon and The Reelist podcast

Join us in two weeks as Crimewave! continues with another highly stylized revenge tale: Richard Stark’s Parker: The Hunter, by Darwyn Cooke!

Until then, that’s a very nice coat you’ve got there. But not as nice as our Comics Canon merchandise! And why not accessorize with a little King Krackle from our sponsor at Category 4?

Last but not least, do us a solid and rate us on Apple Podcasts, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Jul 24 2019

1hr

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Episode 88 – New Mutants: The Demon Bear Saga

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In this episode, our look back at 80s mutant mania continues with The Demon Bear Saga from The New Mutants Vol. 1 #18-20, and the follow-up double-sized story Slumber Party from #21, by Chris Claremont and Bill Sienkiewicz, published by Marvel Comics!

Danielle Moonstar, haunted by visions of the monster that killed her parents, summons it to a showdown on the snow-covered grounds of Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters. It doesn’t go well. As she lies near death, her fellow students find themselves in the mystical Badlands, the only ones standing between this savagely powerful entity and the rest of the human race! And if and when they finish with the Demon Bear, they’ll face off against the bizarre techno-organic alien known as Warlock!

Can the X-Men’s inexperienced junior varsity prevail against these larger-than-life, out-of-this world threats? And can they crash that swingin’ superhero sleepover known as ... The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

  • The New Mutants movie
  • The origin of The New Mutants
  • The artwork of Bill Sienkiewicz
  • Why are the other kids hatin’ on Illyana?
  • The implications of Healer the Morlock
  • Who knew changing two characters’ race would be problematic?
  • Warlock
  • Fear Itself: Wolverine/New Mutants
  • The New Mutants: A Date With the Devil
  • The Immortal Hulk Vol. 1: Or Is He Both?

Join us in two weeks as we kick off Crimewave!, a series of episodes on gritty crime comics, with one of the grittiest crime comics of all—Frank Miller’s Sin City: The Hard Goodbye!

Until then, trade in those drab yellow-and-back New Mutants uniforms for some snazzy Comics Canon merchandise! And add your own Roberto DaCosta sunspots with King Krackle from our friends at Category 4!

Last but not least, please be so kind as to rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Jul 10 2019

1hr 8mins

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Episode 87 – Uncanny X-Men: Days of Future Past (With Tedd Walley)

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In this episode, we welcome Tedd Walley, writer, artist and publisher of Mathilda: The Forces of Evil vs. The Third Grade, as we travel to the distant future of 2013 for a discussion of the landmark X-Men storyline Days of Future Past from Uncanny X-Men #141-142, and finish it off with Demon from #143, by Chris Claremont and John Byrne, published by Marvel Comics!

In a dystopian future America ruled by the mutant-hunting Sentinels, Kate Pryde and the few remaining X-Men launch a desperate plan to avert nuclear war! The adult Kate inhabits the mind of her younger self, enlisting the X-Men of 1980 to stop the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants from assassinating Senator Robert Kelly!

Then, young Kitty Pryde finds herself alone in the X-Mansion on Christmas Eve when she’s attacked by one of the demonic N’Garai in a cross between Home Alone and Alien!

Can the youngest X-Man save the day twice in the span of three issues? And can our misunderstood mutants prevent apocalypse and usher in that better tomorrow known as ... The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

  • Point Blank, on Netflix July 12
  • The cover of Uncanny X-Men #141
  • X-Men: Days of Future Past
  • Wolverine: Days of Future Past
  • Rachel Summers
  • What is the Brotherhood’s endgame?
  • How tight is security at the Pentagon, exactly?
  • Kitty Pryde and Chris Claremont’s legacy of strong female characters
  • Our Dark Phoenix and Ed Piskor episodes
  • A Murderer’s Row of 80s comics professionals
  • All-New X-Men: Yesterday’s X-Men
  • The Great Darkness Saga
  • Brian Michael Bendis’s upcoming Legion of Superheroes comic
  • New X-Men: Here Comes Tomorrow

Join us in two weeks as we grow tired of wondering whether the New Mutants film will ever see the light of day and dive into another Claremont mutant property from the early 80s with The Demon Bear Saga from New Mutants #18-20!

Until then, be the most stylish mutant on your block with our Comics Canon merchandise! And be sure to check out King Krackle from our friends at Category 4!

Last but not least, please be so kind as to rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Jun 24 2019

1hr 9mins

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Episode 86 – Watchmen Part 4: Issues 10-12

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In this episode, we temporarily set aside our “clean” rating to wind up our four-part series on Watchmen with a discussion issues #10-12 of the landmark comic-book series written by Alan Moore, drawn by Dave Gibbons, and published by DC Comics!

As President Richard Nixon prepares to launch nuclear missiles, Nite Owl and Rorschach discover that the person behind the Comedian’s death and Dr. Manhattan’s self-imposed exile is their former colleague, Adrian Veidt! When they track him to his Antarctic retreat, the “world’s smartest man” shares with them his plan to avert a nuclear apocalypse—presenting them with a horrific moral dilemma!

Can these hopelessly outmatched heroes, along with Laurie Juspeczyk and Dr. Manhattan, look on Ozymandias’ works without despairing? Can they prevent Veidt from killing millions of innocent people? And will Curt and Kevin judge this paradigm-shifting 12-issue series worthy of admission into that stronger, loving world known as ... The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

Join us in two weeks as we observe the recent release of Dark Phoenix with a discussion of (what else?) Uncanny X-Men: Days of Future Past!

Until then, why not peruse our new spring line of Comics Canon merchandise? We also invite you to check out King Krackle from our friends at Category 4!

Last but not least, please be so kind as to rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Jun 12 2019

1hr 22mins

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Episode 85 – Watchmen Part 3: Issues 7-9

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Like sands through the hourglass, our four-part series on Watchmen continues with a look at issues #7-9 of the groundbreaking comic series written by Alan Moore, drawn by Dave Gibbons, and published by DC Comics!

As the world marches closer to the brink of nuclear war, Dan Drieberg and Laurie Juspeczyk become lovers. They also defy the nation’s ban on costumed heroes and rescue the residents of a burning building. Determined to find out who’s killing other masked adventurers, Nite Owl hatches a plan to spring Rorschach from prison, bringing the police to his front door. Just when things couldn’t get any worse, Dr. Manhattan appears and whisks Laurie away to Mars to talk, with the literal fate of the world hanging in the balance!

Can Dan and Rorschach avoid being collared by the cops? Can Laurie convince her godlike former boyfriend to save the world? Can any of them survive long enough to make it to that floating crystal palace known as ... The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

  • Spoiler and content warnings
  • The ridiculous sex scene in the Watchmen movie
  • The transformation of Dan Drieberg
  • Is Laurie Juspeczyk a strong character?
  • The Comedian and Silk Spectre: a missed opportunity
  • The relative stakes of Dan and Laurie’s epiphanies
  • Why do characters tack extra phrases onto the ends of sentences?
  • The political cartooning of “Stan Kelly”
  • A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs
  • The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury
  • Kim Stanley Robinson’s Mars Trilogy
  • Department of Corrections

Join us in two weeks as our four-part series concludes with a look as issues 10-12!

Until then, why not peruse our new spring line of Comics Canon merchandise? We also invite you to check out King Krackle from our friends at Category 4!

Last but not least, please be so kind as to rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

May 28 2019

1hr 14mins

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Episode 84 – Watchmen Part 2: Issues 4-6

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Like clockwork, our four-part gaze into the abyss of Watchmen continues as we analyze the hidden meanings of the inkblots contained in issues #4-6, written by Alan Moore, drawn by Dave Gibbons, published by DC Comics!

Alone on Mars, Dr. Manhattan examines his past, jumping back and forth through time as he recalls the accident that gave him his godlike powers. Back on an Earth growing increasingly fearful of atomic conflict, a homeless Laurie Juspeczyk moves in with lovestruck Dan Dreiberg and Adrian Veidt survives an assassination attempt. Meanwhile, the outlaw vigilante Rorschach, framed and arrested for the murder of the former villain Moloch, tells prison psychiatrist Malcolm Long who he is and how he came to be.

Can this overmatched analyst shake off the all-consuming darkness of his patient’s pitiless worldview? Can Curt make it through the episode with a sore throat? (Spoiler: Yes!) And can our heroes survive being thrown into that atomic disintegration chamber known as ... The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

  • The Watchmen TV show trailer
  • Manhattan and Rorschach as Superman and Batman analogues
  • Strangeness and charm
  • Chekhov’s time-lock test vault
  • The weird passivity of Dr. Manhattan
  • The fearful symmetry of Fearful Symmetry
  • Hey, that guy carrying the sign! He's ...!
  • The cultural influence of Rorschach
  • The Watchmen Hostess Fruit Pie parody ad
  • Saturday Morning Watchmen
  • The Whimper of Whipped Dogs by Harlan Ellison
  • The Reversible Man by Alan Moore
  • The Death of the Red Mask from Animal Man # 7
  • Judgment Day and Other Stories: Illustrated by Joe Orlando

Join us in two weeks as we march toward Armageddon with a look as issues 7-9!

Until then, why not peruse our new spring line of Comics Canon merchandise? We also invite you to check out King Krackle from our friends at Category 4!

Last but not least, please be so kind as to rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

May 15 2019

1hr 6mins

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Episode 83 – Watchmen Part 1: Issues 1-3

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin start the clock, kicking off a four-part exploration of one of the most acclaimed comic book series of all time with a look at Watchmen #1-3, written by Alan Moore, drawn by Dave Gibbons, and published by DC Comics!

In an alternate-reality version of 1985, a man named Edward Blake is thrown to his death from his penthouse apartment. Investigating this Manhattan murder mystery, the faceless vigilante known as Rorschach discovers that Blake was once the government-sanctioned crimefighter called the Comedian!

Fearing that someone may be targeting former costumed adventurers, Rorschach attempts to warn his onetime allies—Dan “Nite Owl” Dreiberg, Adrian “Ozymandias” Veidt, Laurie Jon “Doctor Manhattan” Osterman and his live-in girlfriend, Laurie “Silk Spectre” Juspeczyk. But Rorschach’s warnings seem far-fetched, until the godlike Doctor Manhattan is accused of causing cancer in his friends and enemies—and abandons Earth for Mars!

With America’s atomic protector gone, can President Richard Nixon prevent an impending nuclear conflict? And will our protagonists live long enough to retire to that home for hidebound heroes known as … The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

  • The kid gloves come off!
  • Watchmen’s Charlton Comics roots
  • The signature trope of Watchmen
  • Why is he called The Comedian when he doesn’t tell any jokes?
  • What kind of person would want to become a costumed vigilante?
  • Tales of the Black Freighter: The feel-good book of the year!
  • A surprise menage-a-trois
  • “Threatening man buns”
  • Citizen Kane—the Watchmen of movies!
  • Peter Cannon, Thunderbolt

Join us in two weeks as our four-part series continues with a look as issues 4-6!

Until then, why not peruse our new spring line of Comics Canon merchandise? We also invite you to check out the King Krackle digital brushes from our friends at Category 4!

Last but not least, please be so kind as to rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

May 01 2019

1hr 21mins

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Episode 82 – Batman Origins

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In this episode, Curt and Kevin mark the 1,000th issue of Detective Comics and the 80th birthday of Batman with a look back at three early milestones in the career of DC Comics’ mega-popular Caped Crusader—beginning with his first appearance (as “The Bat-Man”) in Detective Comics #27 from 1939!

From there, it’s on to the world’s best-known origin story from 1939’s Detective Comics #33! And last but not least, since a snarling Dark Knight Detective is only as good as his anarchic arch-enemy, it’s the first appearance of the Joker, from 1940’s Batman #1!

Can the World’s Greatest Detective crack the imminently solvable Case of the Chemical Syndicate, overcome the death of his parents, and survive his first encounter against the deadly Clown Prince of Crime? And can he strike terror into the hearts of the superstitious and cowardly gatekeepers of … The Comics Canon?

Things Discussed in This Episode:

Join us in two weeks as we begin a four-part deep dive into Watchmen with a look at issues 1 through 3!

Until then, why not peruse our new spring line of Comics Canon merchandise? We also invite you to check out Mathilda: The Forces of Evil vs. the Third Grade, as well as the King Krackle digital brushes from our friends at Category 4!

Last but not least, please be so kind as to rate us on iTunes, send us an email, or hit us up on Twitter or Facebook, and we may read your comments in an upcoming episode. And as always, thanks for listening!

Apr 17 2019

52mins

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iTunes Ratings

64 Ratings
Average Ratings
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4
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2

Good educational podcast

By jeremyfrankly - May 02 2016
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I didn’t know a lot about comics coming into this, and this was a good primer

Needed this.

By Mexibro 69 - Apr 09 2016
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They touch new stuff/old stuff. Comic newbie here, needed this. My comic Sherpas, thank you!