Friday, September 15, 2006

Steele This Book


How's it hangin', turkeys? Not good, I bet. Hi. Lancelot Steele here. I'm sure you remember me from the first three years of the "Dazzler" comic, specifically issue numbers 3 through 31 (May 1981 to March 1984). And I'm here to tell you about a fantastic opportunity!

  • Are you a miserable, sexless loser? But of course you are... you're a comic book fan!
  • Do you long to become a rampaging sex magnet who spends every night atop a sweaty, greasy, writhing pile of the opposite or homogenous sex?
  • Are you easily gulled by "get rich quick" schemes and shady, fly-by-night internet merchants?

If you answered yes to any of these questions then you'll want to buy a copy of my latest and greatest self-help guide, "Be Steele, My Heart." If you answered yes to that third question I highly recommend purchasing several copies of my book! I guarantee it will quintuple in value within six months! So lay your eyes on this, dudes and dudettes! The following is just a sample of the bonertifically-proven advice I'm offering you, my loyal fans.


Rule #22: We all know there are two kinds of women: dogs and foxes. But did you also know that there are two kinds of foxes? It's true! There are winners and losers, and you have to know the difference before you can score! So how can you tell? Easy! Try putting the moves on her. A loser fox will hem and haw and mumble something about "not wanting to lose you as a friend" or "being married to the Lord" or how she's "over ninety years old and quite fragile" or how she's "just a voice in your head and what you're flirting with is actually a role of carpet somebody leaned up against the wall." A winner fox? Will be on you like cheese on a steak sandwich, and she won't take your wallet when you're not looking, either!

Rule #35: Dress for action. You want steamy, violent, underpants-destroying sex (or as the more sensitive types call it, "romance"). You need to send a clear message. Do it visually! I'm not saying wear a jacket with the phrase "Horny Now" embroidered on the back of it (although I do own one). That's actually too literal. Use pictures! I had a series of t-shirts emblazoned with simple pictograms -- like the kind you see on traffic signs and restroom doors -- indicating whichever sexual position I was most interested in that day. But I kept getting carted off to jail so I had to go with the more ambiguous "heart' symbol. It still works!

Rule #46: Don't tolerate competitors! You're a horndog. You need to mark your territory. No, not like that! That will also get you arrested. (Learned that one the hard way.) And not only are the turkeys in the above panel sniffing around one of my favorite hunting grounds (the hallways being used as a makeshift tornado shelter at the mall) but the way they're dressed is positively stomach-churning. Setting the mood is key when you're on the make. I go for total ambience. If anybody else around is wearing something that crimps the love vibe I'm sending out, I hussle their asses through the door. Sometimes they resist. Then you have to get physical. See that lady in the dowdy green Lois Lane dress? I just punched her in the face. Didn't want her "hassling the talent!" And to answer your question, yes, I do refer to my penis as "the talent."


Rule #47: Sometimes turkeys you think are competitors don't have the same sexual interests that you do! And sometimes they think you "need to be taken down a peg or two" and that you're a "pretty boy" with a "whorish mouth" and they drag you into a broom closet! Listen up: it is vital that you learn to identify which turkeys are after the foxes and which ones aren't. I still have trouble with this one -- sometimes I run into the same non-competing turkeys week after week and they smirk at me and they say "Look who's back for some" and I try to run but they grab me and pin me down. I don't know how that keeps happening. But my point I'm trying to make is that when it comes to this situation, you losers are on your own. I'm just giving you fair warning, is all.

I'll be back with more excerpts from my book on Monday. Until then, hang loose... and go for it!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Jewel Live To Regret This



Don't you just hate it when an accessory overpowers the rest of your ensemble? I know I sure do. In fact, this very thing happened to me when I was a Junior in High School! Allow me to set the scene for you: it's the thirtieth century and my buddies and I are in the quad, standing in line to order our class rings. I'm in my Space-Goth phase, rocking a figure-hugging black vinyl number, alternately black-and-white streaked hair that came down to about the middle of my back, and an immaculately trimmed black tailback beard, with heavily-kohled eyes and red contact lenses. I'm feeling fantastic after having just made the most kick-ass handbag in shop class. It's a good day. Little did I know what trials lay ahead...
Polecat: Black and white? Puh-lease. I originated that look, you know.

Me [looking behind me at Polecat]: And I perfected it, Polecrap. The way you do it is so tired, anyway. I don't even know why -- ugh. You know what? Just don't talk to me. And would it kill you to wear some deodorant?

Polecat [sputtering]: I'll have you know this musk is a potent symbol of male sexual power among my proud yet downtrodden people! Don't make me call the Sensitivity Police on your skanky ass!

Me: And don't make me call the Fashion Police! You've got legs like two tubes of extruded space-polenta and you're wearing short-shorts? Honey, 'round these parts that's punishable by lethal injection.

Polecat: "Lethal injection"? Is that what you called it when you gave Fire Lad the space-clap?

Me [fists clenching]: Oh, it is on now, Motherfu--

Ring Salesman: Next!

Polecat [nervously fans himself with his hands, inadvertently wafting more of his stench onto me]: Oh thank God.

Ring Salesman: Have you had a chance to look at the brochure?

Me: Yes, and I know exactly what I want.

Ring Salesman: Which is...?

Me: A dazzle gem.

Ring Salesman: We don't sell rings with dazzle gems in them.

Me: I still want one.

Ring Salesman: Sir, dazzle gems are extremely rare and terribly expensive.

Me: Well, why do you think I want one? Duh! You're not the most powerful laser in the space-drawer, are you?

Ring Salesman: Just choose something else.

Me: Inertron?

Ring Salesman: Again, we don't offer that.

Me: How 'bout Zuunium?

Ring Salesman: No! Did you read the brochure at all?

Me: Yes! But now I don't know what to go with since you don't have anything cool.

Ring Salesman: Here's an idea... what's your birthstone?

Me: Sigellian.

Ring Salesman: Fine. And what sort of metal would you like for the setting?

Me: Duralim.

Ring Salesman: Oh, for--! We don't offer that metal because wearing it pretty much guarantees you'll be struck by lighting. Look, you can have gold, silver, platinum, lurium, spectrasite or ultrasite.

Me: Fine, fine. I'll have the lurium with that setting. [points to holo-photo floating over the ring salesman's table]

Ring Salesman [tallying price on refrigerator-sized calculating machine]: Okay! Your total with tax comes to Three thousand, six hundred and ninety-three space-dollars.

Me: What--?! That's insane! Are all your stones priced like that?

Ring Salesman: Most of 'em, yeah.

Me: Let's start over. What's your cheapest stone?

Ring Salesman: That'd be Green Kryptonite. On Earth there's so much of it they use it to cover their driveways.

Me: So how much would that run me?

Ring Salesman: Roughly? About two thousand five. Sorry, there's an import tax.

Me: Shit. That's ten times the amount in my savings.

Ring Salesman [incredulous]: All you kids were told about the class rings last year. Are you telling me you didn't put away anything for today?

Me [sheepish]: I did but then I blew most of it on these hair extensions.

Polecat: I believe that's what's known as "throwing money down an A-hole." [titters annoyingly]

Me [to ring salesman]: Pardon me one second. [whips around and punches Polecat square in the face. He drops like a sack of space-potatoes. Then I address the salesman again.] C'mon, pal. Do me a solid. Don't you have anything I could use in a class ring?

Ring Salesman [digs in pocket]: Well, there is this weird stone I found on the sidewalk this morning.

Me: Lay it on me. [examines stone] Say, it has a spooky monster face inside it! Sweet! Tell you what, I'll have this stone with an ultrasite setting and GREAT PLANETS I'M BEING DRAWN INTO THE JEWEL!!!

[I float in a bizarre Ditko-esque skyscape within the gem. The monster face hovers over me and addresses me in a booming, echoing voice.]

Jewel: Yes! Your petty greed has trapped you behind the facets of my prismatic power! Submit, mortal! Your destiny is no longer your own! I am the master and you are the humble instrument of my dreaded will! BECOME ONE WITH THE STYGIAN STONE!

Me: Yeah, no thanks.

Jewel: Silence, wretched one! You desired infinite power and it shall indeed be yours but at a terrible price: YOUR IMMORTAL SOUL!

Me: I think you have me confused with somebody else. I just wanted an affordable class ring. 'Kay? Bye.

Jewel: THERE IS NO ESCAPING THE STYGIAN STONE! Many have dared to try and all have failed! Feel your willpower DRAIN AWAY as my thoughts become your own!

Me: Nope. Not happening. Tell you what. I'm in a good mood today so you just let me out of here and we'll call it square.

Jewel: Cease your senseless prattle! ALL WHO LIVE WILL BEND TO THE WILL OF THE STYGIAN STONE!

Me: Screw you, asswipe. You don't wanna cooperate? Fine! I'll figure some other way to bust out of this creepy dump.

Jewel: ODD! Mayhap your alien physiognamy has a natural immunity to my thought-warping rays!

Me: Or maybe I'm just that cool, dickweed.

Jewel: NO MATTER! Until the end of days, your fragile form shall remain trapped within my crystalline walls!

Me: Whatever. Talk to the wall. [I turn into a steel wall, which somehow causes the gem to shatter and eject me back into the physical plane. Still in wall-form, I teeter for a moment and then tip over onto the already-prone Polecat who was just then regaining consciousness. I turn back into humanoid form and scramble to my feet.]

Polecat: YEEOW! Uncle already! I don't know what crawled up your ass today, Blockade Boy, but you are acting like a major bitch.

Ring Salesman [digging a sliver of the destroyed jewel out of his eye]: You know, we do offer low-interest financing.

Me [a bit shaken]: Yeah, let's go with that.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Manny's Worst Day Ever


Dear Glynda,

I am writing you from the prison hospitle. In France. I know thats probly a shock but I figger its best to just be out with it like rippin off a bandaid.

So heres what happened this time. You know that one guy Hap who used to hench for the Calculater well he told me last time I was in jail I oughta take me a electronicks class cause then I can get better paying gigs. And I did! And it was easy! Like I learnt COMPUTER LANGUAGE which is a breeze you dont have to worry about captilzashun or fancy-shmancy grammer or nothing. So then like two days after my releas I meet this guy Whitey who says hes rounding up tecknolodgical-minded henchmen for a big cushy job in some guys big floating fortress over in EUROPE and the airfare is free and they even take care of faking the visa and what-not so of course I say YES.

Well it turns out the boss is a one-armed NAZI name of "General Sal" or something ekwally stupid and Im thinking of cutting and running right there I mean even a old merc like mes got standards but I already signed the contract and I really need the dough so beggers cant be choosers I guess. In the plus collum I get to wear only the sweetest hi-teck supersuit like EVER. All shiny and red and silver and the arms and legs look like Slinkys and the guns are BUILT RIGHT IN and the helmet is so big they had room for some kinda machine that gives you a Japanese massajh now and then just for kicks. The teck part is top of the line like even more advansed that a Commodore Vic-20 if you can beleive it. Even better the suit was already detailed when I got there washed and waxed and the interior smells like pine needels so I guess other than the Nazi part that General Sal guy is a real class act.

There was maybe a couple hunnert henchguys there altogether so natchurly I seen a lotta famillyer faces. Smitty and Clubber and Freebie and Porky and Two-Tone and Nosey and Stumpy and Winks and probly even more I cant remmember right now cause the beating I took whapped some a the names right outta my skull. So after we all suit up we get devided into groups some a us have to invade some jerkwater country nobody likes called "Zandia" and some a us have to right away fight the New Teen Titans and some a us are put in "resserve" for later. Guess who gets put in resserve? You got it and Im thinkin GREAT no bonus for me but then MORE super guys attack only these ones are EVIL. So General Sal says "Sic em."


Evil guys dont play fair (and I should know) so I right away I know we are royally screwed. Clubber plows into this German guy who looks like the time Manny Jr. ate too much cotton candy and yakked it back up onto that quilt your Gramma made you and the German guy MELTS him. Just like that. Oh and by the way I cant help but notice one a the other groups appairently beat the Titans cause now the Titans are in a big Popamatick bubble deal being turned into cavemen altho I couldunt tell right away at first I thought maybe they were all just Italian or somethin.


Anyway like one second after Clubber bites it this freaky chick with big weird calligraffy eyebrows puts a whammy on Two-Tone and Winks and me too a little bit only I wasnt really paying attenshun to her so it didnt work too good on me like everybodys arms start to look like snakes and Im thinking "That aint right" so I shake it off but Ill tell you what Two-Tone and Winks sure got a load of it. The poor dumb shmoes start shooting at eachother like theres no tommorrow and they even wing me in the arm and the cassette drive whirs and the video screen prints out LEFT GUN MALFUNKSHUN and then Winks nails Two-Tone point-blank in the chest and then he turns on ME so what am I gonna do? I got no choice right? I gotta shoot Winks right in the head. And the hole time Im thinking of '66 when he got my back in that barfight we had with Ding Dong Daddys gang but now it was every man for hisself.


So the freaky chick dont do nothing after that she just stands there looking all proud a herself or maybe shes thinking up more stupid ways to drawn on her eyebrows so Freebie and Smitty and oh yeah this guy Id just met before named Sluggo we charge at this French guy whos in a fruity gold number and his head looks like its coming outta a lobsters ASS and Im praying to God his superpowers are as lame as he looks so of course he wiggles his fingers and the four a us are in SPACE. Yeah I know. WHAT THE FUCK. The visor starts to frost up and I feel like my eyeballs are gonna pop right outta my skull and I can see the other three just floating away but I was last and I reach out for whatever I can and by pure dumb luck I grab the edge a the hole Frenchie made and its SOLID. So I pull myself back thru into Earth again and hightail it for the exits cause contract or no contract Id had enuff of THAT shit. And the video screen is saying JYROSCPICK COMPENSATERS MALFUNKSHUNING and Im bumping into shit left and right but the hell with it I just want out. Oh and at this point the Titans had freed theirselfs so I have to worry about dodjing THEIR sorry asses. But whaddaya know I make it outside free and clear so guess what happens next. No GUESS.


That one Black Titan Cy Berg or what have you I guess hes Jewish like Sammy Davis Jr. is hanging off a the floating headquarters by one a his stupid Inspecter Gadjet arms and Im heading strate for him cause I cant mannoover too good no more and this OTHER sunuvabitch who they tell me later is Whitey the guy who got me INTO this mess is ALSO heading strate for him from the other direckshun and then ZOOP! Cy Berg yanks hisself up and we crash and the suit blows me to Kingdom Come and by Kingdom Come I mean France.

I wake up in a hospitle bed in prison and its worse than reglar prison cause its FRENCH PRISON and it smells like garlic and everybodys all snooty just cause I cant speak France and they alla them smoke like ALL THE TIME even when their showering I dont know how they do it. Also I been having them dreams again where Im that guy on that other Earth. The last one was the weerdest I was in a supervillain PARADE and it ended with me going to jail which is appropreeate.

So thats all the news. Take care and dont forget to jot down my new address and also if you can make me some snickerdooduls. I gotta craving for some snickerdooduls.

Your loving husband,

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Clark Svent


I hear he used to play for the Vikings! From "Thor" #373 (November, 1986) it's the Thunder God's "secret identity," Sigurd Jarlson. Really, Odinson? That's the best you could come up with for a name? How 'bout Lars Kent? Bror Wayne? Hal Jurgens? Dierk Grayson? Jansen Storm, which gets bonus points for use of the word "storm"? Mike Hammer? No, wait, wait... I got it! Chuck Norse!

This is a very simple look for Thor. It was 1986, so I think he really could have worked a cream-colored Italian suit with a sky-blue t-shirt and some nice Nordic-themed silver jewelry. For a slight edge, I'd match it up with some alligator-skin boots. I'd also either keep the hair in the ponytail but slick the whole thing down with something appropriately greasy, or undo the ponytail and fluff the hair up into a perfectly 80's mane. He'd look just like those brawny, monosyllabic characters who work as bodyguards for the drug-dealing bad guys in 80's action films. Still, I suppose Thor is trying to not stick out of a crowd so the plainclothes thing is a good idea. Although I feel sorry for anybody who tries to help him with that duffel bag. 'Cause it has Mjolnir inside it! "Jeebus, Sigurd, what do you got in this thing? An anvil? I can't even pick it up!" "That's because thou be not worthy, mortal-- er, I mean, don't sweat it, buddy! I'll take the bag, you grab us a couple a' cold ones!" Which reminds me: apparently Thor can talk like a normal human being when he sets his mind to it. (I always knew he was a poser.)

Let's go to a close-up, shall we?


Yikes. I think he might need to cut back on the cortisone injections. Or the cheese fries. Say, fellas, here's some fashion advice I think you might find helpful: if you want to avoid a case of "fat face" like ol' Sigurd here (and you're not already fat everywhere else) try not to do all of these things at the same time:

  1. Have a large, fluffy hairstyle.
  2. Grow a big, bushy beard.
  3. Wear enormous, cheek-covering aviator spectacles.
  4. Be drawn by Sal Buscema.

In "comics nerd learns to appreciate football" news, Jeremy watched the Vikings/Redskins game. He decided to root for the Vikings since he liked their uniforms better. And they won, barely! Some of the adorable tyke's observations:

  • When a Redskins player crumpled to the ground in a non-contact injury at kickoff, he said "That's why you don't wear five-inch stilletto heels in a football game."
  • On the news that Minnesota starting safety Dwight Smith had been "deactivated": "Ah, so he's kind of like the Vision... if S.H.I.E.L.D. had caught the Vision doing something indecent to a lady in a stairwell."
  • Darren Sharper, with his hyperbaric chamber, invited comparisons to Jack Of Hearts. And neither of us could figure out why the chamber looked like a cross between a sleeping bag and a cartoon race car.
  • In the fourth quarter, Washington incurred a five yard penalty for an "incidental facemask." Which is a good description for this thing. Y'know, when the eyeholes are that big it renders the mask completely ineffectual, Schumacher.
  • Going by ESPN's preshow graphics, certain players have the ability to glow radioactively and grow to half again their normal height, then shrink back down again, all in a matter of seconds. Jeremy hopes the league is testing their urine for Pym Particles.

Monday, September 11, 2006

NFL = Nice F'n Logo

Here's a funny story about Jeremy: never the sporty type, as a child he once tried watching a football game with his older brothers and was soundly laughed out of the room after he complimented one of the teams on their "nice costumes." Haw! What a jerk!

Here's another funny story about Jeremy: at the tender age of thirty-seven he's decided to become a football fan. Why? Because he wants to be able to talk about something else besides comic books and Broadway musicals. So why football? Because it's the most comic-booky of sports, with beefy, chemically-enhanced fellows pounding the living tar out of one another (am I right, Trent Green? Trent? Hello? Aw, don't worry about it; you just rest now.) while covered practically head-to-toe in colorful costu- er, uniforms. And he appreciates the strategy element of it, which apparently reminds him a little of "Vandal Hearts" on the PS1 from back in his gamer days. Although football players don't typically burst into noisy fountains of blood when they get sacked. ("SPSSHHH!!!")

Jeremy's tried this kind of thing before, by the way. His efforts in past seasons usually consisted of buying a "season preview" magazine in August, never reading it, and feeling vaguely guilty the rest of the year. Last season he made a decent start but within a few weeks he started to feel overwhelmed by all the teams and facts to keep track of and he gave up. He thought he'd try to go with baseball this summer but he lost interest pretty quickly. (Remember that A-Rod reference I made a few months ago? We haven't watched a single baseball game since then.) But this football season, or so he says, he really, really means it. I believe him. He seems pretty darned enthused about the whole deal. And to avoid burnout, he's going to concentrate on following just a few teams: right now it's the Kansas City Chiefs (because if you're a Kansan it's the closest thing to a "home team", which is kind of sad) and the second one is the Steelers, I think because he liked watching Bill Cowher kiss that one guy. Also, he's going to completely ignore college football because, y'know... baby steps. Someday, for sure, but not right now. And he seems to really enjoy the hell out of watching football games, like the Chief/Bengals match-up yesterday afternoon. And here's another example of how serious he is: he recorded the game before he watched it, and he made the mistake of reading the ticker during the Panthers/Falcons game and saw the Chiefs were down by seventeen points, and yet he still watched the game anyhow. The Chiefs still wound up losing, but at least it was only by thirteen points. That's something, I guess. Anyway, you should see him, hunched on the loveseat, armed with the "pause" button on his remote and his copy of Howie Long's "Football For Dummies", deciphering the abbreviations and initials and such that flash on the screen. He's like the Jane Goodall of gay comics nerds. And I've decided to help the l'il fella out. He'll watch at least one game in its entirety every day that they're telecast and on the following day's blog I'll post any comics-related football comments he made (plus anything else he said that I found amusing.) It connects football to an interest he already harbors. And the very best part? You, my wonderful audience, will know if he didn't watch any games on a particular day, because I won't have anything new to post. And then you all can give him hell. So here's the first installment...

  • From what Jeremy understands from watching SportsCenter, apparently Terrell Owens and the Eagles were like Mento and the Doom Patrol, but the Cowboys say he's now like Hawkeye and the Avengers. Except for the "blowing up" part.
  • Jeremy tells me the Tennessee Titans mascot is a raccoon (the hell?!) while the New Teen Titans' mascot was a kid who could turn into a raccoon.
  • From the Chiefs/Bengals game yesterday: one of the announcers started to say a certain doctor had repaired "Carson's Palmer" but he caught himself at the last minute. Which prompted Jeremy to say that the same doctor had "enlarged Larry's Johnson." *cricket noises* ...Well, I liked it.

But where is the fashion, you ask? Right here! I couldn't help but notice that a lot of NFL logos would look perfectly smashing on various superheroes. For instance, the Bengals "B" logo would be great for the Bronze Tiger. Er... is he still alive? The Titans logo is just busy and faddish enough for a loser superhero like Triumph. The Broncos logo would work nicely for the Night Rider (western Ghost Rider guy)... if he wore spandex, that is. See, the horse seems kind of mean, and its mane looks like it's on fire. Spooky! The Chargers logo is a natural for any electrical-based hero, even it it also kind of resembles a big snaggle-toothed frown. The Cowboys logo would work for any of the Starmen or even Night Girl, although I suppose that's a no-brainer. The Bears' big orange "C" would have looked mighty fine on Cluemaster or Catman but they don't quite count as superheroes. Dang. Well, the big apeshit-crazy bear head would have been nice for Ursa Major, if only he wore a costume. Maybe he could put it on a wifebeater or some boxers or something. The Lions? Captain Britain, natch, although that's really a lateral move. Maybe that godawful "Lionheart" guy could use it. Green Bay's "G" is fine for any hero whose name starts with "Green" and it would be a fine team logo for the Global Guardians as well. The Falcons? Le Peregrine, but of course! The Panthers logo is perfect for the Black Panther, (no brainer) but since the symbol is severed at the neck it's just fine for Pantha, too. Any objections, Pantha? *silence* Yeah, I thought not. And the Rams have a great logo for the Olympian, given his connection to the mythical golden fleece, i.e. he's wearing the damn thing.

Alrighty, now it's your turn. What other NFL logo-superhero connections can you make? There are just two rules: the logo can't have a color that clashes with the hero's costume and the logo can't have any lettering that conflicts with the hero's codename (it's why I didn't use the Chiefs logo for Speedy or Arsenal or Arrowette, since it had those big "KC" initials.)

And to help our little Jeremy wrap his brain around the impossible vastness of the NFL, are there any comparisons you can make between the league or its players/managers whatever and comic books? *makes imploring Sally Struthers face* Please, he's counting on you.