Archive for October, 2011

Batsy!Boo Serves Up A Fright

31/10

dc44introIssue #44, Detective Comics (October 1940)

Batman & Robin in…“The Land Behind The Light”

Moody!Monday, Batfans!

I certainly couldn’t have timed this better, what with it being Halloween and all! And here I was, wracking my brain trying to figure out if I should just skip ahead to a particularly creeptastic issue of DC with which to celebrate the holiday. Psh. Amateur.

Here at Hus af Snark, we spent the weekend geeking out over Batman: Arkham City and putting the “laughter” in “slaughter” as I butchered a poor, defenseless pumpkin:

The cats have barely escaped costume-ization, only because I don’t think I’d be able to keep the cackles at bay while watching them impersonate fainting goats the second the costume went on. It’s like they forget how to stand upright entirely, preferring to drop to their sides and turn baleful glances our way.

We’re still trying to figure out what we’re going to do this evening, but something tells me it will involve hard apple cider toasts and The Nightmare Before Christmas (among other scarier offerings). We considered passing out candy, but in years past there’s been poor turnout, what with the folks here deciding that somehow, Trunk Or Treat in a parking lot is more fun. *stops self before going on a “What happened to my Halloween?!?” rant.*

Either way, we do hope that YOUR Hallow’s Eves are full of fun and excitement.

But now? Now it’s time to take a turn for the decidedly weird…

NANANANANANANA-NAAAAA! ONWARD!

When last we saw our Bat and Bird, they were taking out the trash in a city full of criminal refuse. In this issue, we open with a somewhat familiar sight:

The minutes tick by, slower and slower:

Eventually Batsy returns, with news:

Once changed, the pair head off into the foggy night to track down the residence of Madman!MarC/Ko:

No sooner do they step through the front door (instead of, y’know, scaling to the upper window as would be the usual case), than Madman!MarC/Ko pops into existence in front of them:

Ranting about the fourth dimension gets Batsy’s attention, and the pair listen intently while Dr!Crazy shows off his dimension machine. When they aren’t impressed enough, he takes it a step further:

When Dr!Crazy doesn’t return from his little hallway stroll, Batman decides it’s time to give him the benefit of the doubt:

Of course, they don’t care about what the movies tell us about entering the light, and so they discover first hand just why it’s such a bad idea:

Giant!Gorl carts the pair off to the castle, where he decides that the oversized dungeon is the perfect place to stash these “small ones” until they can later decide what to do with them:

Our heroes quickly determine that they’re small enough to squeeze through the bars at the top of the door, and manage to do so unscathed. Then it’s off on a mad-dash through the castle to escape. When faced with two doors, the pair split up briefly to investigate only to find themselves in dire trouble when a giant cat appears from nowhere:

Just as Obvious!Batman is reminding Oblivious!Robin that they are “in a land of giants, so everything is large compared” to them, they’re scooped up, yet again, by a Stealth!Gorl, who carts them off to his Giant!King:

Gorl and the King speculate that our heroes must be “Small-Ones” bred giants, and thus need to be destroyed. Batman ain’t having any of that nonsense, so he decides to take action:

While Gorl is distracted by a bat-kick to the schnoz, Robin manages to trip him up a bit, giving Batman another opening:

Robin dispatches another guard with his sling, and they employ the double rope takedown:

Batsy decides to add insult to injury by beaning the King in the face with a soft fruit:

Then they grab some utensils as weapons and head to the window to escape:

Once on solid ground, they beat a hasty retreat, only to have Robin snatched up in the talons of a giant condor just as they’re clear of the castle. Our quick-thinking Batsy steals a model plane from a pair of Giant!Boys:

He kills the condor with his knife, barely manages to catch Robin as he plummets back toward the ground, and then they fly off into the swamp:

Batman forks the crocodile in the eye and soon, they stumble upon a tiny city full of tiny people and Madman!MarC/Ko!

Beleaguered by the giants and unable to defend themselves, our heroes decide it’s time to teach these little peeps the value of kicking some righteous giant ass via the combined efforts of slingshot and airplane:

One of the giants escapes and heads after Robin, and he’s as sure as Giant!Chow when suddenly:

Happy Halloween, Batfans! Until Thursday!

gtbsig


Emo!Thor Ends The Universe With His Hammer

27/10

tmt155introIssue #155, The Mighty Thor (August 1968)

The Mighty Thor “Now Ends The Universe!”

Thundering!Thursday, Emo!Thor Enthusiasts!

Chilly, grey, moist. Hello, Seattle Autumn. We have a pumpkin to murder this weekend, and Halloween to celebrate…for it is, next to Yule, my favorite holiday. I just haven’t decided if we’re going to give out candy (not that we’d get that many T.O.T-ers) or if we’re going to just turn off all the lights and creep ourselves out with old horror movies.

DILEMMA!

So Captain America came out, managed to snag your copy yet? Worth every penny! I am still, seriously, vibrational with squee over the upcoming Avengers movie. Like whoa.

Word on the street is that we’re about to enter a HIGH DRAMA period of Thor’s life. One rife with strife and Shakespearean language, dastardly foes and gentle ladies. And emo.

Oh yes, there will be emo.

I’ve noticed the trend over the last few issues, lots of talking, moderate yet violent action, followed by even more conversation. And, perhaps it’s just me, but it seems as though our emo!hero is undergoing a bit of an identity crisis? Almost as though he’s torn between being the dutiful son and the awesome Thunder God he’s supposed to be.

In any event, things are about to get really real up in this joint…

ONWARD!

When last we left the Emo!One, he was standing atop a roof, waiting for a sign from Daddy!Odin, while across the universe, Maddened!Mangog was prepping to rain down all sorts of Ragnarok-y destruction. Brave!Balder was fighting off the amorous advances of a ‘Nilla!Wafer in love, and Sexay!Sif was languishing away in a hospital bed. Tired of emoing on one rooftop and getting no response, our hero hammers across the sky to another one:

Across town:

While the nurse tries to puzzle out just what it is her patient is babbling about, they’re joined by a visitor:

He tells Sif that they must leave, and she’s MORE than willing to leave with him, even if his face is mostly obscured in shadow, but she needs a little help:

Once they’re alone, Emo!Thor spins a vortex that transports both of them home to Asgard (fully dressed, at that) to stand on Bifrost and hope that the rest of their allies heard the emo!call to arms.

Meanwhile, Beleaguered!Balder is still dealing with ‘Nilla!Wafer’s inability to take “No” for an answer:

As Balder fights for his life, ‘Nilla makes him the offer to just say the word and she’ll drive them back, to which he says her NAY!

And to add yet another twist to this story, we leave Balder fighting for his life against ‘Nilla’s legion of frozen warriors to speed across the universe to a place we haven’t visited since Issue #132:

And back to Asgard, where we find ourselves plunged into the middle of a random fight involving the Warriors!Three, suddenly disrupted:

Fandral, Hogun, and Volstagg are deployed to fight the Mangog after they challenge his authority:

Volstagg, upset by the potential “death” part of the Mangog confrontation attempts to take his leave, claiming to both want to say goodbye to his wife, and summon Thor, but he’s wrangled back onto his horse by Fandral and they’re off to fight the Mangog.

King!Loki watches them go, gleeful in his hatred of all things Thor-related:

One of the guards points out that Mangog isn’t just a threat to a few select people, but the whole of Asgard, and King!Loki tells him to shut his dirty mouth. Of course, as soon as he’s said it, someone else decides to pipe up with an opinion:

Emo!Thor takes issue with his brother’s well-timed usurp, and says as much, calling him out:

Emo!Thor shares his news about Mangog and Loki tells him that he won’t be joining Thor’s Mangog-party, because he was meant to RULE, not battle:

With all this talk about Mangog, it makes one wonder just what he’s up to. Let’s check in, shall we?

We find out, as he’s going along destroying everything in his path, that the reason for his massive shoulder-chip comes down to Odin’s genocide of his entire race for daring to invade Asgard. Of course, he was the last thing they created before they all were wiped out. His tirade is interrupted by an Odinian Force Arrow, bringing down a mountain on his head, which Mangog promptly dislodges:

See, when his race was dying, they took the limitless strength of all the billions that Odin had doomed and stored it in Mangog. So he, technically, posesses the unimaginable might of a billion, billion beings.

Hearing first-hand about Mangog’s plan, our hero is a bit concerned, because as we all know, if the Odin sword is drawn by anyone OTHER than Daddy!Odin, the universe comes to a screeching, fiery end. Obvious!Loki points out the obvious: that Mangog is pretty freakin’ powerful.

Emo!Thor goes to emo over his dad’s sleeping form for a bit, and vows to take out the Mangog threat before he reawakens. Sif pipes up that she will remain by his side:

They have a little tender ‘mo before Thor mounts his charger and takes off:

Thor catches up with a fallen Asgardian soldier, who tells him that Mangog is more awesome than expected and promptly dies. He continues on and finds the remnants of another legion of fighters, all looking much worse for the wear, who ALL tell him that Mangog is the real deal.

Yet still he rides on. And it’s not until he finds himself looking at the charred and broken remains of what was once a strike force that he starts to waver:

As he’s busy doubting himself, he hears voices from a rock cage and goes to investigate:

While Thor is distracted, Mangog is able to sneak up on him:

Until next week!

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The Case Of The City Of Terror!

24/10

dc43introIssue #43, Detective Comics (Sept. 1940)

Moody!Monday, Batfans!

I ‘pologize about going radio silent for the past week. We’ve been dealing with all sorts of ickiness here at Hus af Snark, but I assure you, though I may go quiet, it’s never for too long. And on that note, let me recommend signing up for the email list over here at your right. I promise, I don’t do anything with your email addies, it just notifies you of when I make an update here so you don’t have to feel obligated to constantly refresh or stop by until you know there’s definitely something there!

I just have to make sure my funny is in place because, well, frankly, y’all deserve my 100% snark, not some measly 30%.

It’s all officially “Fall” up in this joint. The weather is chilly and wet, the leaves are turning their gorgeous Autumnal hues, pumpkins are, literally, everywhere, and the holidays are just around the corner.Why do they always feel like they’re sneaking up on me? As though I am somehow unaware of their presence until the last possible second? It’s crazy.

I’ll tell you what else is crazy:

Crazy. Good. OH MAH GAWD!

I spent the weekend playing this game and take everything you see in the trailer that you consider awesome, multiply that by about 1000 and apply it to the ENTIRE game. The graphics are smooth and top notch, the storylines are compelling, the villains are villainous, and the whole thing reeks of amazing.

Seriously. This game was totally worth the wait.

I’ll do more of a review after I’ve completed all the storylines and such, but I just wanted to throw that out there because wow. If you have been on the fence about this game, stop procrastinating, because it is made of awesome and win.

Speaking of awesome…

NANANANANANANA-NAAAAA! ONWARD!

When last we saw our Dynamic Duo, they were putting the beat-down on a baddie intent on slaying the poor unfortunate social elite who’d been silly enough to want their pictures immortalized on canvas. In fact, it’s been just one thing after another for our pair, so they decide it’s time to reprioritize:

Of course, this being Brazen!Bruce and Young!Dick, quiet and peaceful isn’t exactly on the menu. They roll up into town, find someplace to stay, but before they even make it out of the car, there’s a commotion nearby:

As the cowed crowd now simmers down and departs, Brucie, unable to sit back and watch people being oppressed, starts to ask some questions:

Poor!Dick understands and, for the first time in his life, realizes that he will never have a *real* vacation:

Later that night:

Broody!Batsy climbs down the building, leaps over another one, and notices, when he gets to his destination, that a police cruiser is out front. Inside, the visiting police are busy harassing Mr!Carter about his “speaking out” about the Corrupt!Mayor, slinging around terms like “libel”, and are about to take him to jail when our hero bursts onto the scene:

Thusly dispatched, Carter thanks his lucky stars that Batman has shown up to his fair city! When pressed about the situation he explains that the new mayor, Harliss!Greer, took over the position when the old mayor suddenly died in office. He’s apparently turned the area into a paradise for thugs and racketeers, all with the help of Bugs!Norton. But the townspeople can’t call for an investigation because:

He sends Carter somewhere safe, ties up the baddies, and decides to send a little message over to Mayor!Greer’s office:

Across town, at the home of Bugs!Norton, another message:

Everyone stares, and then a flurry of action while they collaborate to figure out what to do:

Unknown to Bugs, Robin was perched outside his window, listening in as he talked about getting the message AND some narcotics shipment off highway 4.

Later, Batsy and Robin catch up with the van in question, and ride it to it’s final destination:

The pair make short work of the dopers, those who weren’t beat down in the initial attack  take off running for safer pastures, but end up getting wrangled back in via Robin’s rope. Finally, with the dopers out of the way:

Batsy and Robin depart with the dope, leaving behind a calling card for Norton:

Meanwhile, our Doped!Duo decide where to target their fear campaign next and Robin points out that he’d seen kids spending money on slot machines in town.

The next day, a couple of Norton!Thugs are roughing up a shop keeper who has an issue with kids using slot machines. Just as they’re about to kick some shop-keeper-heiney, Batsy intervenes, knocks them out, and proceeds to right the wrongs:

Slot machines and dope dealt with, it’s time for another part of our heroes’ plan:

Meanwhile:

The next day, they implement the next part of their nefarious plan to humiliate and undermine the Bugs/Greer racket:

Under Robin’s instruction, they print up and distribute leaflets to everyone in town:

So, in the main hall, Broody!Bat whips the crowd into a frenzy, getting everyone on his side before he sends out the newly squadded-no-longer-retired policemen to round up Greer’s thugs. Soon, the whole city is back in the control of the people, and it’s time for our duo to slide the final pieces into place:

Robin beats him into submission, naturally, and across town:

He quickly dispatches the goons and turns his attention to Norton:

Norton FREAKS:

Batsy dispatches Norton (without killing him, we can only assume, because that part isn’t exactly addressed), the town thanks them, and they depart:

Back in the town, seems that the townsfolk are so thankful for the help Batsy provided, that they wanted to put up something special to remember them by:

Until Thursday Winking smile

gtbsig


Enter The Mangog!

13/10

tmt154introIssue #154, The Mighty Thor (July 1968)

The Mighty Thor “…To Wake The Mangog!”

Thundering!Thursday, Emo!Thor Enthusiasts!

Today was spent listening to someone clomp around on the roof, scraping off the moss. The cats were not amused by this intrusion, as evidenced by their constant looks of “OMG DO YOU HEAR THAT?”, followed by alarmed stares overhead and sticking as close to me as possible. Y’know. In case whatever monster that was on the roof decided to come crashing through.

We then grabbed a bite to eat at our fave Mongolian BBQ joint (shout-out to our cook for his awesome comics fueled convo!), snatched some pumpkin-awesome donut-age from Frost, and then here we are.

At least it wasn’t raining!

Oh, hey…did you guys hear? Looks like The Avengers trailer has officially dropped:

AND OMG! IT IS ALL THINGS AWESOME AND MADE OF WIN! *fangirl flailing*

*breathes*

So yeah. That happened.

And speaking of Thor…

ONWARD!

When last we saw our emotional Asgardian, Daddy!Odin had just broken up the sibling-on-sibling-violence squabble between Thor and Loki. There was an sense of doom, because, SURELY, Odin wouldn’t break up a fight between his sons for nothing but the direst of circumstances, right? But when Thor asks:

But lest you think he’s worried, no. He’s just going to check on his girlfriend:

Once at her bedside, he goes all soft and cuddly:

Curious, he checks her charts:

He’s interrupted by Hela, who, he  mistakenly believes, has come for Stunning!Sif and he swears up and down that she will recover. Haughty!Hela sets him straight about her intentions:

Apparently, Hela has come to show Thor what he’s missing out on:

All he has to do is say the word, and Hela will be MORE THAN WILLING to take him to Valhalla so he can spend his days in everlasting battle. As if on cue, a whole bunch of former allies all cry out for our hero to join in the fray:

We leave him sobbing into his cape, and instead, head back to that abyssal pit to see what Ulik is up to:

A little further along the cave…

Undeterred!Ulik figures that whatever’s behind that door must be pretty powerful, so it’s HIS job, as enemy of Asgard, to let it loose:

Ulik offers to be Mangog’s leader, because that’s just the generous sort of guy he is, to which Mangog replies:

Of course, Mangog decides to let Ulik live for a little while longer because he might prove useful. Meanwhile, back on earth, Traumatized!Thor decides to Blake-out, and manages to startle a poor nurse:

Nurse!Startled informs Lame!Blake that everyone’s wondering about this lovely, distant patient, while Blake gives some flippant answers about her being from “far away”. But then:

As soon as Nurse!Startled takes her leave:

Blake prescribes a good night’s rest:

And then he takes off, having Thor’d-out, in search of Loki, whom he already expects will be using one of his nefarious invisibility spells to hide from him:

Which he promptly lets fall away as soon as Thor is out of sight, and terrorizes the nearby populace before heading home:

Loki arrives in time to see Odin’s private guard, heading out for battle, and before he can leave the area, Elder!Toag, for reasons inexplicable to anyone with half a brain, tells Loki that the hidden Cave of Ages (housing Mangog) has been opened. Loki, ever the pragmatic one, asks why Odin doesn’t just shut the door again:

Elder!Toag leads Loki to Daddy!Odin’s chambers:

Lusty!Loki quickly capitalizes on the situation:

But while Loki’s busily settling into his new role as Daddy!Loki, Emo!Thor continues scouring the city for him, only to be distracted by an ally scuffle:

The guns come out, Thor blocks the bullets with a hammer flick, and one of the guys makes the mistake of grabbing our hero:

One tries to run away, but is brought down by a well timed Mjolnir throw. Unfortunately, this distraction has given one of the other baddies a chance to get behind the wheel of a car. He tries to mow down Emo!Thor and quickly discovers that it doesn’t work that way when the car ends up crumpled and our hero still stands.

Annoyed!Thor goes off about how these hoodlums are the scum of the earth and deserve to be in prison before heading off to continue his search:

Along the way, he runs into a group of hippies, who promptly make fun of his hammer:

He sets the hammer down and dares them to try to lift it. Naturally, they can’t. And when he picks it back up, Thor has a message for these “misguided though pure of heart” societal dropouts:

The dropouts flee, leaving Thor to emo all alone:

Meanwhile, ‘Nilla!Wafer is putting the moves on Brave!Balder…still he resists her charms:

Balder is apparently unaware of the scorned woman fury phenomenon, because shit’s about to get really real right now. Angry!’Nilla whips back a nearby curtain:

That’s when she springs a proposal on poor Balder, having finally grown tired of his stalling:

But before we hear his reply, let’s check in on our battling freaks:

Mangog, on the other hand, is just getting warmed up.

And back on earth:

Until Next Week!

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The Case Of The Prophetic Pictures!

10/10

dcintro42Issue #42, Detective Comics (Aug. 1940)

Moody!Monday, Batfans!

So… How’ve you been?

We totally fell off the grid for the last couple of weeks and with good reason: we’re finishing up a project and it has eaten up every ounce of available time that wasn’t already pre-destined for things like eating, sleeping, and that annoying little habit called “work”.

In that time we’ve gone from mildly stressed (our usual) to OMGWTFISGOINGON, and not necessarily in a good way.

It’s now October. One of my favorite months of the year, rolling right into my two OTHER favorites, and the holidays are looming on the horizon. Family moves, illnesses (human and rodent), missing authority figures… yeah. It’s been Arkham around here.

Speaking of Arkham… Arkham City comes out on the 18th, and you can just bet your sweet buttcheek I’ll have it in hand and fired up to play the day it drops. Also? Tomorrow the first Avenger’s trailer hits the intertoobs and the squee will be flying fast and furious around here.

Maybe I’ll share *wink*…

But in the meantime, I know. You’ve missed me.

And Broody!Bat…

NANANANANANANA-NAAAAA! ONWARD!

When last we peeped in on our pulchritudinous pair, Batsy was giving Robin the responsibility of solving his very own case. And, with a little help from our hero, he was, more or less, successful. Enough that Batsy even gave him a “good boy” pat on the noggin and sent him off so that the adults could talk. Fast forward to pick up sometime later at the Wayne Mansion, where Brucie boy is getting all dolled up for a fancy party populated by the artistically inclined:

The host, Mr. Wylie, tracks down the erstwhile Lazy!Bruce and promptly introduces him to the star of the night’s party:

And, as always happens with Mr. Social Misfit gets introduced to someone important to the story:

Later, outside, Lazy!Bruce overhears Casanova!Antal being warned to stay away from someone’s wife. Because, well, see the above. Lazy!Bruce decides he’s had enough of the boring party and heads home:

Weeks pass, during which Arteest!Antal does his thang, making all the socialites of Gotham look spectacular on canvas. Except for one…small…detail:

Unfortunately:

Elsewhere, an Opera star discovers that someone has flung a dart into the throat of her Antal!Portrait, and the next night?

Word spreads and soon, anyone who’s had a portrait done is in fear for their life. One of them discovers a rope…somehow affixed to his portrait and he turns to the GCPD for help:

Batman is officially intrigued, so he heads out to Rope!Warren’s place, to lend a little backup to the GCPD and, surely, save this latest target:

Finding the building swamped by police (sans donuts and quite cranky), Batsy decides to try a more unconventional approach:

Once he reaches the penthouse and bat!sneaks his way into the room, he’s, unfortunately, met with a grisly sight:

And of course, once he spots the corpse, in comes the cavalry:

Since our hero hasn’t fled the scene, naturally he’s pegged as the perp:

Batsy flees, by way of chandelier, and then takes out groups of the GCPD with a metal vase and flying kicks. But all is not woe:

He leaps into his Bat!Mobile and takes off into the night, the shouts of “DAMN YOU BATMAN!” ringing in his wake. A few days later, Brucie sits in Commish!Gordon’s office, listening to Arteest!Antal whine about how someone is trying to ruin him. When asked who might have a grudge, he rattles off Mikoff or Drake (his latest conquest):

Suddenly, Partyman!Wylie stumbles in, sporting a lovely new sling, raving about how the murderer tried to get him last night. Gordon practically slaps him and tells him to calm down:

ANOTHER visitor comes storming through the door, carrying an arrow. Seems Arteest!Antal is *still* painting lethal portraits, despite the already bad rap he’s getting:

Later, Batman decides that it’d be a good idea to let Young!Dick stretch his wings:

Robin arrives at the boat just in time to thwart the murderer:

After shooting an arrow into Robin’s cape, our Green!Skull leaps overboard, onto his waiting boat, and speeds off into the night:

Later, back at the mansion:

And the next day, Vain!Bruce goes to pay Arteest!Antal a visit:

He brings the completed painting home and hangs it above his fireplace, while Young!Dick wonders if he’s lost his mind. But the next morning:

Later that night, Skull!Baddie sneaks in and points a revolver at Brucie’s head, and fires off a few rounds. But he’s in for a surprise:

I know what you’re thinking:

Pissed off by Batman’s impromptu display of manners, Skull!Baddie grapples with our hero, knocking over lamps and vases, before getting KO’d by Batsy. Oh, and about that dead guy in the chair?

Off comes the mask, to reveal:

Apparently, Wylie started offing Arteest!Antal’s clients because he wanted to up the value of the pre-portrait paintings he’d bought, in a doomed attempt to dig himself out of debt. Unable to deal with the shame of what he’d done, he wrenches away from Batman and grabs his pistol from the floor:

Welcome back Winking smile Until next time!

gtbsig


Not Dead Yet…

04/10

Just swamped.

Life has a funny way of sneaking up on you while you’re busy with other things. Snark will resume soon, pinkie-swears.

I just need to take a moment to dig out from beneath this mountain of bleh that has overtaken everything.

Broody!Batman and Emo!Thor know what I mean:

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