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Issue #64: New Years News Round-Up

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With award season over and done with (for comics at least…), it’s time to move onto some things that are going on in 2013. What better way to kick off our first non-award show of the year than with a round-up of the big news from this week? Lots happened and just in case you haven’t been keeping in the loop, we talk about some of the highlights and let you know our thoughts on what’s going on.

Of course, we always have Book of the Week start things off (after we ramble for a while…) and some of the books discussed on this week’s show include: Sweet Tooth #40, Umbrella Academy, Superior Spider-Man #1, Star Wars #1, Swamp Thing #16, Ghost, Love and Capes: What To Expect #6 and more.

Annnnnnnnnnd… we say it on the show, but just in case you missed it, the Talking Comics crew on Twitter are:

Bobby: @bobbyshortle
Steve: @dead_anchoress
Stephanie: @hellocookie
And Bob’s email is

FYI: the crew have gone all superhero on the world, thanks to the wonderful Hanie Mohd. Like them? Make sure to follow her and let us know what you think of our new superhero pictures.

The Comic Book Podcast is brought to you by Talking Comics (, a blog dedicated to covering the latest and greatest in comic book releases. The editorial staff is composed of Editor-in-Chief Bobby Shortle (Fanboy Remix, Doctor Whocast), Stephanie Cooke ( and Steve Seigh ( contributor) who weekly dissect the releases and give you, the consumer, a simple Roman yay or nay regarding them. Our Twitter handle is @TalkingComics and you can email us at Until next issue … to be continued!

9 Responses

  1. Giant Woman

    I would just like to clarify the question that I tried to ask online that you were kind enough to read on the show. Although my tweet did indeed say “cash in”, that was more to do with the word limit on twitter than my actual point. I was trying to ask whether you felt that Marvel were capitalising on the success and popularity of CaptainMarvel, and trying to appeal to more female readers, OR was it simply and excuse to push out yet another X book. I wasn’t trying to say that they were using the success of Captain Marvel to pull readers in to spending more money, more that they were simply releasing a crazy amount of X-books and that this latest title was yet another “shameless cash grab” as I worded it.

    Just wanted to try and make that a bit clearer.

    Thanks for another good show though guys, keep up the good work as ever!

    • Bob Reyer

      Good afternoon, Ms. G-W!

      It’s always nice to have you check in!

      I think in our own inimitable, meandering way we did manage to get to the crux of your question, and its very important “OR”. As I’ve said previously, I believe Marvel is doing a much better job than DC with female characters and creators (compare and contrast Captain Marvel and Catwoman!), so while I celebrate the release of this new book as an interesting take, the policy of slapping “X” (or “Avengers”!) on every other book does seem to have the stain of Mammon upon it.

      I’m sure this ramble doesn’t help any, but it’s always fun to chat!

      • Sean Lamont

        Evening Bob!

        I completely understand it is an opinion-based subject, but I am surprised to see you think Marvel is doing more for female creator/characters.

        While it’s one thing to compare Catwoman to Captain Marvel (no contest), I do believe that is apples and oranges. The best of one vs the worst of the other.

        I would be curious how you feel about say Captain Marvel in quality against something like Batgirl. Not even going deeper where it becomes:

        Batwoman – Red She-Hulk
        Wonder Woman – Sif
        Supergirl – ?
        Birds of Prey – ?
        Amethyst – ?
        Catwoman – ?

        And that’s not even getting into the Vertigo imprint. It just seems like through sheer volume alone, even though they print fewer titles total than Marvel, that DC is pushing harder for (majority) quality female characters to support their own books.

        Again, just my personal opinion!


  2. thisjohnd

    I might be alone in this sentiment but I enjoy hearing the sales figures each month. Whenever I am at the comic shop I always like to see what other people are buying (in a non-creepy way) so those numbers really interest me. Keep it up! (…if you want)

    I’m actually quite disappointed in this new X-Men book and not because it’s an all-female team but because of the title. On past shows, you all have talked about how there are too many X-books and Avengers titles and how it should be easy for someone that has seen the movies to walk into a shop and start reading X-Men or Avengers.

    Yet now there’s praise for a book titled “X-Men” that’s going to confuse the heck out of some unbeknownst comic buyer looking for a book with Wolverine, Storm, Cyclops, etc. I know the X-Men haven’t been that line-up lately but my point is that calling this book “X-Men” is misleading and just adds to the confusion. I have no doubt that this will be a well-written book but all I have been reading about the book is how it’s a step in the right direction for Marvel to recognize more of its female characters. I’m with Stephanie: Why can’t female characters be strong alongside male characters? Why can’t we just have a good solid X-Men book where Storm is written as well as Wolverine?

    • Stephanie Cooke

      Totally! I’m all for strong ladies in comics, but how does segregating them make things better? Women and men aren’t segregated in the real world and women have to find their strength among men everyday… why can’t our comic book characters reflect that? I think Peter David’s X-Factor does a pretty good job of this. If Wood fails in making this X-Men title a success, at least there’s still X-Factor.

  3. Bob Reyer

    Certainly what follows is all my opinion, and I’ll try to be brief as we’ll soon run out of space. I would grant you the Captain Marvel/Batgirl equivalence, but as someone with decades of history with Wonder Woman, I have a divergent opinion of the accuracy of the current characterization than you and many other “newer” readers do, which we’ve discussed at great length previously. As a Birds of Prey reader since the first issue, I quit the current iteration two issues in over off-model characters and “cheesecake”. There’s Amethyst, which I would have assumed was aimed at younger readers, but nonetheless featured a threatened sexual assault in the first issue, not to mention the “Starfire as nymphomaniac” controversy, the new tarted-up Harley Quinn, the heinous Catwoman-mounting-Batman splash page and her back-breaking #0 cover, and of course the “Japanese schoolgirl fantasy” of AmeComi Girls. For me, the “Old 52” had purged itself of some of the 90s excesses, but they’re creeping back in, excepting not so oddly, in the books handled by more veteran scribes Paul Levitz (World’s Finest) and Gail Simone in Batgirl, this last being the only book of the New 52 that I stuck with after the re-launch.

    To pick up on a point Stephanie made on-air and here, PAD’s XFactor is a great book, whose three distaff leads persevere through all manner of personal and super-conflicts with strength,dignity, and humour. In other titles, the remaining X-books are chock-a-block with strong women, BMB’s SpiderWoman might be his best work, Jeff Parker’s handling of the female Thunderbolts was varied and masterful, and his take on Betty Ross in Red SheHulk is already showing signs of depth un-seen for many years; and of course, there’s one female character for which there’s no equal at the Distinguished Comeptition, and that’s Susan Storm Richards.

    Sean, I believe that we must “agree to disagree” and depart the pitch, each content in our own “rightness”…howz about a truce?

      • Steve Seigh

        AboveAverageJoe, In regard to FF, be sure to remember that where FF begins is at the turning point of many major events that happened in Hickman’s Fantastic Four. I read FF before Fantastic and admit that for a time I was very confused. However, give it time. Eventually the book takes on its own rhythm and things explain themselves. My advice is to have patience and enjoy the ride. It’s my favorite book of the year.

        p.s. In my opinion those are all worthy purchases. Hype is a strange word, we’d like to think of those books as worth being in any collector’s library. We hope you enjoy them.

      • AboveAverageJoe

        If a know that a certain person is gone fighting in the Negative Zone, am I ok or do I have to buy Fantastic Four and if so, what volumes? Also, does anyone know if all the Court and Night of Owls is going to be one volume?

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