Coming in February

Got a few things on the pipeline for February.

Ellie Quin by Alex Scarrow, I’ve already done a review of the first book in the trilogy, I will be reviewing the full trilogy which will hopefully soon be available in paperback, they already on Kindle. Alex has another book out in February, “TimeRiders: The Pirate Kings”, 7th book in the successful TimeRiders series from Puffin.

2000ad have released a range of manga sized books, Cursed Earth, The Day the Law Died & The Dark Judges. All reprints of classic stories which I hope fans old and new can enjoy.

I will also be reviewing Professor Brian Cox’s latest TV show, The Wonders of Life currently showing on BBC2.

Yes, I am still reviewing things I either know I like or expect to like. I enjoy writing reviews on this blog and hope people enjoy reading them. Happy to hear constructive criticism. Also if you spot errors please let me know & I will correct them.

I am also open to requests to do reviews.

What is Slo-mo? – Light Dredd spoilers

I have read a few odd things about Slo-mo, some people clearly don’t see it the same as me. One person even thought that as Slo-mo slowed down perception so 1 second seemed like 100 it would make someone a better driver. So I am laying down my observations of Slo-mo. Continue reading

Spider-Men – a Graphic Novel by Bendis, Pichelli & Ponsor – medium spoilers

Spider-Men, a graphic novel Published by Marvel

Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Artist: Sara Pichelli
Colourist: Justin Ponsor
Letterer: Cory Petit
Cover Artist: Jimmy Cheung

Previously published as a 5 part miniseries by the same name in June to September 2012.

Firstly, I don’t read anywhere near as much US comics as I used to. I wanted something to read, popped in Travelling Man, Leeds, to browse and spotted this graphic novel. The cover is eye-catching but isn’t Spectacular (did you see what I did there?) but it certainly piqued my interest.

British media alerted me to the fact Spider-Man had died. I read the article and saw ‘Ultimate’, so I knew it wasn’t ‘my’ Spider-Man. It wasn’t the adult Spider-Man who dated Gwen Stacy and married Mary Jane Watson. It was the teen version in the Ultimate Universe. To a casual reader as I am these days it wasn’t HUGE news but it was interesting. I mean, Ultimate Spider-Man is to me like IDW Judge Dredd. It is an interesting twist on the REAL Spider-Man (though hugely better than IDW Dredd so far).

But I am a casual reader of Marvel, rather than a non-reader, so I understand the Universes. I see this title and I think, ‘cool, a good place to catch up on some things’. And indeed it was. Continue reading

Why Dredd (2012) is a good Comic Book Adaptation – Spoilers medium & out of context

I have decided to write this as my Dredd Retrospective is too long and I am not convinced it is focused. This write up concentrates on why this film is a good Comic Book Adaptation. There are Spoilers, though mostly out of context, so I would advise against reading further unless you have seen the film.

Judge Dredd is an iconic British Comic character, set in a dystopian future. Introduced in Prog 2 of 2000AD (2000AD call each issue a Prog) dated 5th March 1977. If memory serves that means it was on sale on the last Saturday in February but I may be incorrect, slept since then.

I first saw the film on Thursday August 30th in London at a pre-release screening, and several times in the cinema. I won a ticket to the Fan Screening on Twitter, others were available to win on the 2000AD Forum and John Wagner’s Facebook page. Others were invited guests, including the Judge Minty creators, Planet Replicas, John Burdis who runs the Cellar of Dredd blog and Pete wells who runs the 2000AD Covers Uncovered blog. Our friends over at ECBT2000AD couldn’t get the day off work and missed out, obviously I didn’t rub that in on Twitter at all (well not much…). John Wagner & Carlos Ezquerra, the creators of Dredd were in attendance. As were Karl Urban, lead actor, and Alex Garland, writer and Producer. You can read more about this in my earlier article Dredd 3d Fan Prerelease Screening, spoiler free.

The key to a good adaptation is keeping the character as true to source and any changes making sence. Below I run through some of the differences and similarities from Panel to Frame. Continue reading

Dredd (2012) Retrospective – SPOILER HEAVY (intended for those that have seen the theatrical release)

I must admit to being less than happy with this article.  The next article is better focused, with less spoilers. Read on if you want, please bear in mind I don’t think this is to my usual standard.


This review is intended for people who saw the theatrical release, or the recently released blu-ray or DVD. It is full of spoilers as I will discuss setting, plot and characterization. I will discuss script, direction and cinematography. I will also compare the film to the source material. Sorry, this is long… I have spent a long time working on this and have considered many ways to cut it in to sections, I’ve decided to leave it whole.

Many people incorrectly think the film is called Dredd 3d, it isn’t. Posters boldly placed the 3d logo as the technology is used central to the plot. The film is simply called Dredd.

Please, if you have not seen the film don’t spoil your enjoyment of the blu-ray or dvd. Read my spoiler free review and Come back and read this later. Continue reading

Babble – a Graphic Novel by Lee Robson, Bryan Coyle & Eddie Deighton – mild spoilers

Babble, a graphic novel Published by Com.x

Writer: Lee Robson
Artist: Bryan Coyle
Letterer: Eddie Deighton

I read this in Pdf form, a medium I do not like reading in. I am reviewing it as such and at times I may compare the experience to reading a paper product.

Firstly, I had never heard of this book before reading it. So I flicked through the pages of the Pdf to get a feel of what I would have thought flicking through the pages of a graphic novel in a comic book store. I saw a female lead character and what seemed to be zombies, though they didn’t look very dead. I didn’t get any feel for the comic, I didn’t connect with it.

When I started reading on my PC I found the experience quite uncomfortable and in the end chose to transfer the Pdf to my Kindle Ap on my Android phone. Reading it on my phone was much more comfortable even with the much smaller screen. I’ve only just started reading books in this medium.

So I started from page 1 again. Soon I found I was engrossed, despite the oddness of reading a comic on a hand held device. Continue reading

A Polar Bear Family and Me a TV series – moderate to heavy spoilers (marked)

Presented by Gordon Buchanan with Jason Roberts
Directed by Saritha Wilkinson
Produced by Ted Oakes
Originaly aired simultaneously on BBC2 & BBC HD on 7th, 8th & 10th January 2013

A Polar Bear Family and Me is a three part documentary following the trials of life faced by mature mother Lyra and her latest cubs Miki and Luca.

The series follows wildlife cameraman Gordon Buchanan on his quest to get to know more about Polar Bears and how they raise their young. He traveled to the international territory of Svalbard and was working alongside representatives of Norwegian Polar Bear researchers. Gordon is well known in the UK for his work on Spring Watch, Autumn Watch and of course the sister series to this, The Bear Family and Me. Continue reading

Spoilers or no Spoilers?

I hate spoilers. I avoid them where ever possible but sometimes it can’t be helped no matter how hard you try.

Yeah, talking of tries. A few years back I was unavoidably busy on Challenge Cup weekend. Rugby League, I’m from t’North. Traveling home, recorded game (VHS, no CDs yet let alone DVD, Blu-Ray, etc) waiting for me. I heard the result five times, on one bus. I heard who scored last. Game spoiled.

Schultz spoiled Citizen Kane for me years before I watched it. Yes, Peanuts, or Snoopy as it is often better known as in the UK to those that read it, Charlie Brown to those that watch it. I had been told I ‘must watch this film!’ by a friend. I settled down,alone, to watch in silence. The whole thing was about the search to find ‘Rosebud’, the final word spoken by Charles Foster Kane. Half way through the movie a memory popped up, unbidden: Linus was watching TV and his sister Lucy asked him ‘What are you watching?’ he told her and she told him ‘Rosebud was his sled.’

Peanuts… Continue reading

A question about my reviews. Answered.

A friend who reads my reviews asked me a question recently. He wanted to know what I didn’t like about Dredd 3D. He said my review was very positive but as I hadn’t gone in to detail he couldn’t tell what I thought.

I was a little taken aback, I think I was almost gushing with praise about the film. Maybe not as much as Pete Wells, but who does.

So there was a bit of a discussion about my reviewing style and what I have reviewed so far.

Continue reading

2012 A Dredd Full Year

2012 was a very eventful year for fans of Dredd.

February saw the 35th anniversary of 2000AD, 35 years of Thrill power. Many readers have grown with the comic, seen it go through lean times and seen it resurge as a flagship of good British comics. Loyalty has kept a core readership, but quality of product has ensured this.

I recall the four page pull out advert that heralded this comic. 1977 was a time when my imagination was really starting to grow and I saw what this comic was intended to be, took the advert to my Dad and requested the first issue. Dan Dare swayed him, my Dad had been a big fan in the past. I loved the first issue and soon my parents put in a reservation at our local news agent for weekly issues. Continue reading