The Flash

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I’ve always been a fan of The Flash, I am after all a comic book geek, or nerd I find both terms perfectly acceptable, but I don’t like the TV show it’s too soap opera like and I hate soap opera. My favourite version of The Flash has been Wally West, especially Mark Waid’s version, I was bitterly disappointed when Wally West was relegated to a non-character with the return of Barry Allen if I was made of less stern stuff I would have cried.

Pfft, who am I kidding? I did cry.

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My second favourite version of The Flash is the original, Jay Garrick, obviously not a prominent solo character but a big player in the Justice Society of America. I hated when DC rewrote their own universe and relegated Earth 2 characters to bit part roles. It made me so angry I punched an inanimate object, which is better than punching animate objects, inanimate don’t hit back but do break one’s hand if you go and hit a brick wall.

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I always found Barry Allen a bit boring and much preferred Superman and Batman, though Barry’s role in Crisis elevated the character to mythical heights in my opinion and his death resonated throughout the DCU for almost three decades. Should have stayed dead Barry.

As someone who needs to go running, hey I’m a typical geek/nerd I like movies, binge watching TV shows, reading comic books and eating pizza I’m not exactly fat but I ain’t thin either, I got to admit I hate, HATE, running I don’t know how The Flash does it, sure he’s got super speed but even if I had super speed I still wouldn’t enjoy running I’d merely bamboozle people with my super reflexes and I sure as Hell wouldn’t fight crime.

Criminals are fucking scary.

His Name Is Kamandi

I have recently re-read (though it felt like reading for the first time) Kamandi The Last Boy On Earth by Jack Kirby, I own his works in two hardback volumes, and I’ve owned them since they were released.

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Kamandi is kinda like the Charlton Heston movie Planet of the Apes, only better, I have great affection for Planet of the Apes and I often, and always at inopportune moments, shout out, ‘IT’S A MAD HOUSE! A MAD HOUSE!’ I refer of course to the (undeniable) fact that the world upon which we all live, and the only place we’ll call home, is indeed a mad house and it’s patients are running amok.

The title character Kamandi is the last surviving member of a group of people who escaped disaster (The Great Disaster) by hiding in a vast complex of underground bunkers these bunkers held generations of human survivors who managed to continue the human race, by the time of Kamandi’s stories the vast underground complex has been reduced to one survivor Kamandi the only true human boy left alive on the planet. Kamandi’s adventures begin when the vast underground complex, Command-D, is overrun by humanoid wolves and Kamandi discovers that humans have devolved while all the other animals have evolved, it’s a hard reality for Kamandi to accept and he’s constantly railing against the times in which he now lives often finding himself in conflict with intelligent animals because he can’t let go of the fact they were once used for entertainment and as pets when Man (foolishly) ruled the Earth.

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Jack Kirby’s artwork throughout these two volumes is a joy to behold and I found myself immersed in his fictional world, craving to be somehow a part of it, The Last Geek/Nerd On Earth. Jack wasn’t merely the ‘King’ of comics he was also a master storyteller and no one tells a Kamandi story better than the ‘King’.

During his adventures Kamandi happens upon all kinds of highly evolved animals starting with Wolves and then Tigers, Apes, terrors of the seas and terrifying mutated giant insects, Kamandi meets and fights them all.

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As you can imagine being The Last Boy On Earth is enough to drive Kamandi insane and he spends much of the two volumes emoting about the lost human civilisation and faces terrible psychological turmoil as he’s thrown into all kinds of outrageous situations.

The story of course centres all the action on North America and it’s a devastated landscape fought over by Tiger and Ape empires and raped of its spoils by insidious reptilian intelligences. The action and adventure never seems to stop until it disappointingly does.

Kamandi The Last Boy On Earth has been sadly neglected by DC Comics in favour of a half dozen Superman and Batman books as a massive comic book geek I’d sooner buy and read a new Kamandi series rather than trouble myself with a bland Bat book.

I doubt Kamandi will ever appear in his own series again I guess it doesn’t matter I have ‘The King’s’ stories to keep me entertained over and over again.

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OMG! It’s Full Of Geeks

 

I HATE text message language, it’s just lazy. I used OMG in the title of my post so I could express my displeasure.

Today’s geek related comic book post is all about ME, ME, ME!

Well about my comic book purchases this week. I originally thought I had zero comic books this week and this made me feel a little sad.

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I also HATE feeling sad fortunately it only happens once in a blue moon. I also HATE emoticons, or whatever they’re called, I only used one above so I could express my displeasure.

This week’s surprise comic book stash cost me just over one hundred pounds, I allocate myself five hundred pounds spending money every month but I don’t spend five hundred pounds on geek related stuff every month, if I did I’d have to move home.

Again.

This week’s stash looked a little like this:

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Originally I had no intention of paying my local comic book shop (Ground Zero Comics here in marvellous Mansfield https://www.facebook.com/Ground-Zero-Comics-1672441529657830/?fref=ts) a visit this week until owner/manager/friend messaged to let me know I had some comic books to (HAPPILY) purchase.

MY HERO ACADEMIA

Is a Japanese comic book series, a Manga, the story centres around a teenage boy who through dedication and a lot of hard work inherits super powers allowing him to enrol at a school that trains the next generation of superheroes. It’s kinda like the X-Men/New Mutants/Generation X but without the super charged angst, soap opera and over written storylines and plots.

The series, translated into English, is on volume five and I find it an enjoyable, quirky, fun series.

ROBIN: SON OF BATMAN

Damian Wayne died but was resurrected like all good (and bad) superheroes these days, I know, sigh! Fortunately he came back to life less petulant, less annoying and less all knowing now he’s an interesting character with a good supporting cast and his Rogue’s Gallery is full of the insane.

The artwork and colours are lovely to look at which is kind of the point of comic books. I thoroughly enjoyed the first volume and I’m hoping volume two is equally as enjoyable.

EDDIE CAMPBELL COLLECTION

Back in the mists of time I happily read Eddie Campbell’s Alec and Bacchus both series offered something different from the adventures of men and women in their underwear punching each other out of existence that I found myself immersed within.

Once I noticed this big (kill an adult male dead with a single blow) collection I knew it must be mine. The stories told within these collected editions entertained me during my time in my home century and I’m hoping they entertain me again in this alien century I find myself lost within.

The creator of this wonderful collection, Eddie Campbell, is probably best known for his collaboration with Alan Moore on the Jack the Ripper series From Hell, that was made into a terrible movie starring Johnny Depp.

Out Of The Blue 

My comic book stash this week was a pleasant surprise and though I was happy before I knew I had comic book goodies to purchase I was even happier after I knew.

Someone (a clever person?) once said, ‘it’s not how much we have, but how much we enjoy, that makes happiness.’

I concur.

They’re Coming Back

Once more (and in Caps Lock mode for added emphasis) THEY’RE FUCKING COMING BACK! Hmm, how did that swear manage to get in there? I’ve written the words but even I don’t know, one of those ‘go figure’ moments I guess.

In comic book news, gleaned from the website Bleeding Cool, DC Comics might be reviving the Legion of Superheroes, my all time favourite superhero team, the writer of this future (see what I did there?) series will be one of the following well known (to us comic book fans) names:

Dan DiDio, Tom King, Hope Larson, James Tynion IV, Paul Levitz, Keith Giffen, Dan Jurgens or Yannick Paquette.

I’ve been a fan of the LoSH for almost forty years I’ll be hoping for a Levitz/Giffen team-up but if I could choose a writer (and someone other than Grant Morrison) to write the series I’d choose Jonathan Hickman his work on the Fantastic Four was as good as Walter Simonson’s, John Byrne’s and Kirby/Lee, his Avengers work, though not as good as his FF, was the best Avengers have ever been, in my humble opinion.

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For me Legion of Superheroes SHOULD be Star Trek and Star Wars and Doctor Who and Battlestar Galactica and Babylon 5 all rolled into one awesome Stuart Immonen illustrated package.

I have an idea for a long running storyline featuring the Legion it begins with the Legion welcoming a new member, male or female human or alien it doesn’t matter, and over the course of the first twelve issues the Universe laws and rules are established. The new member of the Legion is written as a compelling relatable person/alien but with ideas that are hardly Legion like and the character having a strong personality causes other Legionnaires to agree that the Legion needs to change with the changes the 31st century has to offer. This new member causes a schism in the ranks and the Legion splits in two, one the Legion fans know and love the other a darker more modern version of the Legion, a spin-off title Legion Dark would be made possible.

For the second year I imagine an all encompassing storyline that features Lovecraftian type monstrosities attacking the United Planets and both Legions struggling to protect the reality they know, this storyline could run for a very long time and examine the realities of a war with invaders from outside of the Universe, what would be their motivations to want to invade, conquer and perhaps destroy everything? How utterly alien would they be?

Lovecraft hints in his stories that monsters from outside the universe we know, and love, wouldn’t be bound by the physical laws of our reality and that they’d be composed of materials completely different from anything else in our Universe. 

I for one welcome new adventures of the Legion I just hope the creative team are the right people for the job and the characters are treated with respect, nay, reverence.

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Superman and Spider-Man

 Every week (just about) I read the adventures of both the Man of Steel and of the amazing, the spectacular, the sensational Spider-Man recently I noticed that both characters are happy jolly individuals, in stark contrast to The Batman and The Punisher. Neither character seems bitter about their roles in their respective fictional universes and though both have experienced hardships both approach life with a positive attitude it’s probably why Superman’s my favourite DC character and Spider-Man one of my top three Marvel characters (Thor Odinson and The Thing my other two favourite Marvel characters). Both Superman and Spider-Man make for great role models.

Whenever I’m interacting with other people, usually at work, I try to think what would Superman do? Or Spider-Man say in this situation? My responsibilities at my place of employ centre around the support of Service Users I’m forever using, inside my head, ‘with great power comes great responsibility’ as I operate in and around my workplace, and I ensure my time at my workplace revolves around the Service Users as I keep them entertained, play the fool for their benefit, act like a kid and generally make sure the Service Users are laughing and joking. I figure Superman, and especially Spider-Man, would keep Service Users well entertained if they had to help support their wants and needs.

I’m not sure which superhero is the most jolly, is it Superman or is it Spider-Man? I guess it doesn’t really matter both seem super happy and both seem to inspire happiness in others. You never see Superman (Post-Crisis) having arguments or upsetting his adoptive parents or Spider-Man raging at Aunt May both characters have fun loving relationships with their adoptive parents.

Superman

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Doomed planet. Desperate scientists. Last hope. Kindly couple. Grant Morrison’s explanation of Superman’s origins in his All Star Superman story is the best use of Superman’s origin I’ve ever seen. Usually when a character is enjoying a re-boot or re-imagining, or new movie series, the characters origin is poured over again and again and again. I don’t need another story telling me the origin of Superman in the comic books it’s been done so many times, each time slightly different that it’s kind of annoying for Superman’s origin I prefer Pre-Crisis storylines and Pre-Crisis Krypton, it’s a world that belongs in a Fifties science fiction movie, bright gaudy costumes, rocket ships, laser pistols, a proper Flash Gordon/Buck Rogers type world. In the movies I prefer the Krypton, and origin of Superman, from Superman: The Movie, Marlon Brando as Jor-El Superman’s father, come on it’s Marlon freakin’ Brando as Superman’s father it doesn’t get much more awesome than that, in fact the only way it could be more awesome is if it was my Superman movie (the one that exists inside my head) that features Arnold Schwarzenegger as Jor-El.

‘Live as one of them, Kal-El, to discover where your strength and your power are needed. But always hold in your heart the pride of your special heritage. They can be a great people, Kal-El, they wish to be. They only lack the light to show the way. For this reason above all, their capacity for good, I have sent them you… my only son.’

Imagine that classic iconic piece of movie dialogue delivered by Arnie it would be as awesome as this:

John Matrix: Remember, Sully, when I promised to kill you last?

Sully: That’s right, Matrix! You did!

John Matrix: I lied.

I LIED! Delivered in a fake Austrian accent is the one piece of movie dialogue I use the most, whenever I’ve purposely lied about something and then been found out I make sure I sound a little like John Matrix (great name by the way).

Superman lost not only his parents but his entire world, everyone who was like him, washed ashore a primitive world with a million different problems all of them petty and pathetic he Superman is the most human of all fictional characters but he’s an alien, remarkable. He’s the person you can rely upon to do the right thing no matter what and even if he’s faced with the prospect of excruciating death by green kryptonite he’ll still manage somehow to save us all.

What an alien guy.

Spider-Man

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My favourite version of Spider-Man, and more specifically Peter Parker, is Steve Ditko’s once he left the Spider-Man comic and John Romita replaced him Peter Parker went from loveable nerd to cool kid the very next issue I didn’t like that, I want Peter Parker back, perhaps he’s been locked away in a cryogenic chamber all these years as his horrid cool kid clone has ran rampant throughout the Marvel Universe. Or have we already had that storyline?

Spider-Man suffered terrible tragedy early in life, his parents dying in a car accident, he didn’t train himself to be a competent psychopath and carry out a war on motor vehicles instead he became a bright young kid with a promising future but then out of nowhere he gained amazing super powers, which made him go a little nuts to begin with, only the death of his beloved Uncle Ben managed to save Spider-Man from a hedonistic lifestyle of pleasure without pain.

Hit with tragedy for a second time Spider-Man didn’t decide to start a war on the poor or become a serial killer instead he became a hero, one of the most respected heroes in the Marvel Universe, time after time he put his life on the line to stop bad guys, usually bank robbers and petty crooks, but he helped save the world on more than one occasion he did all these things while his personal life was falling apart this didn’t turn him into a psychopath, a murderer, instead it pushed him to do greater good and he’s continued to sacrifice his own life to ensure the people of New York City live in relative peace.

What a guy.

Both Superman and Spider-Man need honouring for their dedication to always doing the right thing no matter what they’ve not let tragedy and pain dictate how they respond to the world or operate within it instead they’ve used moments that have broken lesser men as a means to galvanise themselves into selfless actions. They’ve both loved, Superman Lois Lane, who he has a child with, and Spider-Man Mary Jane, who he had a kid with, and both characters seem to learn from mistakes they’ve made and try and ensure they don’t repeat them.

Both Superman and Spider-Man seem like really happy chappies great examples of happy people they both seem to be grateful for the lives they lead, and have led, and both seem grateful for the immense powers they possess. I don’t think I’ve ever read a story featuring either character in which they’ve been lacking in gratitude big headed or overbearing they’re humble guys having been brought up with real world good to honest decent points of view. Both characters ensure they use their powers for the greater good and both seem pleasant always smiling and laughing, having a good natured joke with work colleagues while in their civilian identities, enjoying the company of family and friends, everyone who knows them in their secret identities finds them perfectly reasonable individuals no ones got a bad word to say about Clark Kent or Peter Parker because both are good guys.

Every good guy in the DCU wants to be Superman’s friend, I doubt there’s anyone in the Justice League who dislikes the happy fella, even The Batman, dark knight that he is, considers Superman his best friend, his super friend. As for Spider-Man during his run as an Avenger not only was he well liked he was (almost) revered and now, as Peter Parker, he’s surrounded by a team of happy go lucky scientists who think he’s a swell guy and that’s because he is a swell guy.

Superman and Spider-Man are the types of character I’m happy to admire and idolise they’re the types of happy people that inspire me and who I aspire to be. On those rare occasions I feel a bit sad, woe is me, I pick up a comic book featuring the adventures of Superman, or Spider-Man, and my moments of sadness disappear into the ether.

Batman And The Punisher

I confess I’m a big fan of comic book characters, I regularly read the adventures of both The Batman and The Punisher recently I noticed that both characters just aren’t happy individuals, they’re both bitter and they both hold grudges. They’re both well liked, within the comic book community, for being such dark bitter angry asshats. But they’re not good role models because we shouldn’t be bitter, hold grudges or be angry.

Only recently I caught myself, in conversation, expressing hate towards people I once knew, once worked with, later in the day I examined, inspected, observed and researched my anger and notion of hate and realised I don’t actually hate anyone I was just being overly dramatic. Being hateful, holding grudges just seemed ridiculous I laughed at myself and then mocked myself for being a nincompoop. A nincompoop is a fool and being a fool is something I’ve always been.

The Batman and The Punisher are also fools, grand nincompoops, both have suffered tragedy but rather than getting over it, and themselves, they instead allowed themselves to be consumed by hate and embraced psychopathic tendencies.

I don’t know who is more unhappy The Batman or The Punisher ones a billionaire with a fetish for dressing as a giant bat and beating up the poor the other enjoys killing people both are assholes but ones probably worst than the other.

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At an early age Bruce Wayne saw his mother and father gunned to death in the Gotham streets. The killer may have had mental health issues and just required professional help and medication. The murderer might have been a low-life criminal scumbag with a drug problem, gambling debts, nowhere to call home, no one to love him and in a desperate situation committed a desperate act that haunted him for the rest of his life.

Obviously the murder of his parents affected Bruce Wayne in all kinds of weird and wonderful ways but instead of becoming a psychopath preying on the poor he could have used his inherited wealth to help the poor of Gotham. Improved education, ensured the poor had access to affordable, or free, medical care, provided jobs, built housing but no instead Bruce Wayne blamed poor people for the death of his parents and went to war on them.

What an asshole.

The Punisher


Was already a psychopath before his family were accidentally slaughtered during gang warfare. I suspect his descent into the abyss was inevitable. Unlike The Batman Frank Castle had already been brutalised by institutions the military industrial complex had turned him into a killing machine without mercy, remorse or empathy. If his family hadn’t been killed accidentally by criminal scum he’d probably have killed them himself because they were annoying, needy, too noisy.

It’s weird that The Punisher, a mass murderer and serial killer, is considered a hero there’s not many villains in Marvel comics with a bigger body count to their name than Frank Castle, now you could justify The Punisher’s murderous assault by claiming criminals deserve to be punished until they’re dead but everyone of his victims was a son, or daughter, to parents who loved them, some of The Punisher’s victims were probably parents themselves. A lot of The Punisher’s victims sold drugs, their only crime, they weren’t all killers or paedophiles, and what’s worst selling drugs or killing people? If murder is worst than drug dealing then The Punisher is a worst person than most of those he’s killed.

Both The Batman and The Punisher need punishing for their violent crimes, arrest followed by prison sentences, Frank Castle for life, and while suffering in prison both characters need to lighten up a little, stop taking life so damn seriously, both vigilantes/madmen are perfect examples of miserable people.

Both The Batman and The Punisher are hanging on to things that cause them to be unhappy and both express their unhappiness via violent means. Does The Batman ever take time out just to enjoy being Bruce Wayne? No, when he’s not obsessing over a crime he’s obsessing about his parents deaths decades before. I don’t think The Batman loves anyone or anything, I doubt he has love for himself, The Punisher probably loves his guns but nothing else. Neither character seems to learn from their mistakes the stories told about them seem to go over and over the same mistakes again and again and again without end. If you don’t learn from your mistakes then you’re doomed to repeat them.

Both The Batman and The Punisher are examples of the type of person who cares what people think though they fake being indifferent. Why spend any time worrying about what people think? If you’re a good, honest, decent person then what people think doesn’t matter if you’re a bad person you don’t care because fuck ’em but The Batman and The Punisher care because it’s a kick to their massive egos, how dare people criticise me? Who do they think they are? I’ll fucking smack ’em. Stab their eyes out with my trusty Army knife.

Does The Batman have any friends? His colleagues in the Justice League might respect, even fear, him but are any of them his friends? I know he and Superman are supposed to be the best of friends, super friends, and that was true Pre-Crisis but Post-Crisis Batman is such a psychopathic asshole I can’t see Superman being his friend. As for The Punisher if he had any friends he’s either gotten them killed or killed them himself.

Being a happy person requires regular daily sleep and I’ve never seen The Batman or The Punisher sleeping they’re always to busy making someone else’s life as unpleasant as their own and is that their purpose? To bring down misery and pain because they’re miserable and in pain?

What are their long term goals? The Batman hasn’t made Gotham a better place, in fact it’s probably worst and The Punisher’s war on crime is impossible to realise all he can do is keep on fighting until the bitter end.

I think there are lessons to be learnt from The Batman and The Punisher they’re not characters to admire or idolise instead they are learning tools, don’t be as unhappy and bitter as The Batman and The Punisher otherwise you’ll end up a psychopath.

Saturday Comics

  
Sat at work on a Saturday morning chilling, people I help support in their day to day life still sleeping, time to waste, nothing to do, good job I have an iPad containing this weeks comics. 

I always enjoyed on Saturdays back in the Eighties heading out from home in a morning trawling the newsagents in the village, Mansfield Woodhouse, where I once lived, this trawl would last a good hour and I’d arrive home with British comics 2000 AD and Warrior and American comic books, mostly Pre and Post Crisis superhero comic books from DC.

Saturdays were always my favourite day of the week, it meant no school, I never liked school, I loved being a kid, best days of my life, I just didn’t like school and I don’t like work, though I realise I’m lucky to have such a good job, I could be toiling away in a factory.

I wasn’t overly keen on this weeks comics, to be honest, Marvel and DC seem to have lost their way, the books they produce aren’t interesting, they’re not well written and in some cases the artwork looks worst than my own attempts, but when I’m sat at work waiting for Service Users to wake and there’s nothing else to do reading comic books I’ll never read again seems better than talking to people, or staring at the TV.

Good comic books make me happy, I like to write about happiness from time to time because if you spend any time watching, or reading, the news people seem so unhappy it’s the why behind crime, terrorism and war plus every other negative aspect of human life. If everyone was happy crime, terrorism and war would immediately come to an end, unfortunately there aren’t a lot of us who are happy.

Being happy doesn’t just happen we have to make it happen by finding, and wasting, time doing things we enjoy. Happiness is derived from enjoyment though it is possible to derive happiness from things that don’t bring enjoyment, for example I don’t like getting wet in the rain but that doesn’t stop me happily making walks that last longer than an hour and when I’m making them in the rain I laugh and derive happiness from being wet.

Fortunately usually everything that makes me happy, brings me enjoyment, involves being inside warm and dry lost in fictional worlds.

Early Morning Happiness

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One of the reasons I find it difficult to be unhappy is because when I wake up leave my bedroom and enter my living room I’m greeted with shelves full of geek stuff. Too much stuff. DC and Marvel comic book collections, big chunky editions of The Walking Dead, a small selection of Manga and hundreds of DVDs. Upon arrival home from work this same geek stuff brings a big smile to my stupid face.

I LOVE IT!

I love all my stuff it makes me happy that’s the reason I can’t stop buying it, or don’t want to stop buying it, I guess it’s like an addiction, but rather than one that’s detrimental to my physical and mental health this addiction as all kinds of awesome benefits.

The only downside to owning so much geek stuff is I quickly run out of space. I was wishing, only the other day, that I’d kept everything, not sold, gave away or thrown away any of the geek stuff I’d accumulated at some point, but if I still owned everything I’d need a huge mansion or two houses to store all the ace geek stuff and I can’t afford a mansion or two houses because I am poor.

Being poor makes me happy. All the negative aspects of my life that would make other people unhappy make me happy, I realised this recently while having conversations with other people and they expressed distress at every day things I do and don’t do, for example, daily exercise and making the five mile plus walk to work, preferring night shifts to daytime shifts, not using mobile phones, not eating at fast food restaurants, not drinking or smoking, never having used drugs or medicines and never having watched a celebrity TV show or something like The X-Factor.

It’s possible I’m the only person other people have met who is like this so obviously I’m a weirdo but from my perspective people who don’t walk, or moan if they have to make a fifteen minute walk are weird. People who have their mobile phones in constant use are weird. People who eat regularly at McDonalds are weird. Drinking alcohol every day and smoking cigarettes is weird. Using illegal narcotics is weird (and naughty) being medicated is weird. Being obsessed with celebs is weird. Watching The X-Factor is weird.

Weird is all a matter of perspective, but if all the things I find weird make other people as happy as my geek stuff makes me then good for them it’s better than smoking, drinking heavily, using drugs, being celeb obsessed and those things, and many more, making a person unhappy. It really would be weird if smokers are unhappy smoking but continue to do so feeling more unhappy with each puff of a cigarette, or drinkers unhappy with the amount they drink but continue to drink the same amount continuously without sign of stopping.

My addiction to geek stuff costs on average about two hundred quid a month if I stopped buying comic books and DVDs I’d accumulate enough cash to go jetting off around the world several times a year but to be perfectly honest I’ve no real interest in travel, visiting exotic locales wouldn’t make me happy I’d probably be unhappy, on days away from work I prefer being home alone surrounded by all the geek stuff that makes me immediately happy early in a morning and continues to bring me happiness throughout the rest of my day.

That’s the thing with this life we’re all experiencing we’ve got to find the things that make us happy and stick to them, no matter what, and if other people express negative views of the geek stuff you like me love, fuck ’em, it’s our life and it’s full of geeky, love it and ignore the naysayers they’re all fucking miserable anyways.

 

 

 

Be Mo Farah

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If there’s something you want to do, like really, really want to do then you’ve got be inspired by someone like Mo Farah, I’m not sure if everyone saw his 10k race during the Rio Olympics but the dude fell heavily to the floor rolled back onto his feet and won the frikkin’ race it was the best example I’ve ever seen of someone really wanting something badly enough to not give up. It was inspirational. Olympians can inspire us all, perhaps more than any other type of person. For the purpose of a blog post I’m going to list a few challenges I’ve decided to try and be Mo Farah at:

Be Happy Now

There’s no point being happy at some undetermined future time because the future’s so unpredictable we all might be dead before we can be happy. Though I’ll be happy if all our deaths are the result of a zombie apocalypse or alien invasion, we’d be living in a freakin’ movie and wouldn’t that be great? Yes it really, really would.

I’m not present enough to be happy at times yet to come I never, or very rarely, make plans for the future I just exist from day to day present in the moment but not present enough to plan ahead. In my life everything happens by accident and nothing is pre-planned, fortunately those accidents turn out well rather than disastrous. Lucky me.

Being happy isn’t something that happens by accident however it’s something you’ve got to want, like Mo Farah winning his race, you’ve got to wake up and be happy it doesn’t matter what time of the day I wake sometimes it’s 04:00 and sometimes it’s 14:00 it depends on my shifts at my place of employ but I always make the effort to be happy, usually by messing about while looking in a mirror, for some reason my ugly visage makes me happy. From my waking moment I make sure every moment brings happiness, preparing and eating food, wasting a few hours writing or drawing, reading comic books, watching DVDs, deciding what to wear, making the five mile plus walk to work, working out with weights, being alone and enjoying complete silence.

I don’t believe that the pursuit of happiness is the purpose of our lives, I don’t actually believe in anything, but I figure because we’re here, we’re alive, we’re still breathing without illness, physical and mental, to plague us we should be happy without having purpose or the wasting of time pursuing happiness.

Most of the time I’m not even aware I’m happy, until I catch myself smiling or laughing or I punch the air with joy because I’ve just watched something ace or read something remarkable but once I catch myself I’m amused because I’m happy about nothing major, I’m happy about being alone, I’m happy without being a winner, without having spent a shed load of cash and then bragging about spending a shed load of cash, I’m happy about having nothing really to be happy about other than happiness itself. It’s a challenge being happy in a human world that seems so fucking unhappy but be inspired by Mo Farah and fight to be happy, WANT to be happy.

Write A Horror Novel

If you’ve never tried to write a work of fiction before you might be under the impression that writing a novel is easy, you just sit before a notepad, or keyboard, and write away the story just flowing from brain to fingers to paper, or computer screen, but that’s not how writing works it requires talent, hard work, self sacrifice and lots and lots of inspiration.

I’ve decided to write a horror novel because my favourite genre, be it movies, TV, books, is the horror genre back in the good ol’ Eighties I read voraciously horror novels I never really read any other genre I had love for science fiction but only visually, movies, TV shows, comic books and I had love of fantasy novels but they tended to be these massive sprawling tomes and I preferred my fantasy more heroic, Conan the Barbarian, than high, Tolkien-esque.

My favourite writers throughout the Eighties were Stephen King, James Herbert, Dean Koontz and of course HP Lovecraft, I don’t read horror novels anymore, other than Lovecraft, I’ve tried to embrace the horror novel genre but I’ve been bitterly disappointed by the novels people, via the Internet, have recommended so I’ve figured why not write a horror novel, write something I want to read, so I’m going to make attempt, fail, feel sad, eat twelve pizzas, cry, crawl into a little ball and die unless of course I’m inspired by Mo Farah and persevere.

Create A Webcomic

I have this idea for a webcomic, it’s probably not a great idea but it is indeed an idea, I want to draw a webcomic inspired by Jack Kirby and have most of it, if not all, completed for August 28th 2017, Kirby’s 100th birthday.

My idea is pretty basic, dude gets super powers, discovers the world is not what it seems, fights evil, it’s all been done before, and much better than I can manage, it’s impossible for me to conjure forth anything original, or even interesting, I can only create stuff I want to read.

The origin of the super dude character has already been mapped out thumbnails wise now I face the hard work translating the thumbnails to full pencils to inks to digital colour add a bunch of coherent words and BOOM webcomic.

Lose Weight, Eat Less

I decided at the beginning of August to lose weight my aim was to lose eight pounds by September 1st I weighed myself at about 06:30 on the morning of September 1st and I was 13 stone 7 pounds rather than losing eight pounds I’d lost fifteen I was most happy with myself and my new target is to hit less than 13 stone by the end of the year. It’s not going to be easy, it requires a lot of hard work, commitment, determination and fighting through days when I just want to eat pizza for breakfast, dinner and tea.

Eating less has been my method of losing weight, I’ve never really ate a big breakfast, preferring two eggs scrambled or berries,  Greek style yoghurt and peanut butter (Whole Earth, crunchy, no added sugar) I’ve stuck to my usual breakfasts alternating so as not to get too bored eating the same thing every morning. For dinner/lunch I’ve mostly ate vegetables with noodles and for tea/dinner two chicken breast, salmon, or a chicken thigh. In between meals I’ve ate one banana and one Satsuma (easy peel) I haven’t found myself feeling hungry, I’ve been quite happy with my diet but I have noticed on the few occasions I’ve ate a large meal a feeling of being bloated, it’s been most unpleasant, and I figure eating less has caused me to be unable to eat more.

I’m of the opinion that we, in nations like Britain, eat far too much, we seem addicted to eating. I live in the centre of my hometown, the desk I sit at to write these blog posts, my novel and create my webcomic is situated so I can see out of my living room window I see the people from my hometown wandering about throughout the day and night most of them are overweight, most of them heavier than me, some of them, a lot, are obese.

I have no problem with fat people, it’s their choice to be massively overweight but I have come to the conclusion that humans are supposed to be slightly, or even massively, under weight. During our caveman days I imagine men and women to have been under weight, I imagine food sources were scarce hunting hardly easy and with so much competition meat wasn’t always a stable part of the human diet. I imagine that early humans were more vegetarian than carnivores and I imagine that life was really harsh, required of people to be on the go from the moment the sun rose to the moment it set, I imagine cavemen, and women, were skinny things and no one was ever fat with this imagining in mind I’ve figured the healthiest choice is to be under weight and not overweight so I’m going to try and reach a weight below my ideal.

In addition, cave people didn’t eat bread, cakes, McDonalds or drink gallons of Coca Cola because such things just didn’t exist, they survived well enough for all of us to be here now on meat, fish, fruits, nuts and vegetables they were the strongest, healthiest, hardiest, fittest humans to ever exist, THE most successful humans in our long bloody history as well as being inspired by Olympians we would do well to be inspired by our caveman ancestors without them fighting to survive every day there’d be no me and no you.

Reduce Sugar Intake

Sugar is evil.

We consume way too much sugar, just about everything we eat, especially packaged food stuff, is drenched in sugar, I don’t know why this has become socially accepted perhaps because sugar is an addictive compound it makes us buy more food thus making someone somewhere extremely wealthy. More fool all of us for making other people extremely wealthy we’re supposed to be clever, a smart monkey, but we just seem fucking stupid.

Throughout August I mainly ate vegetables, fruits and chicken my intake of sugary crap was greatly reduced I didn’t notice a difference in my attitude, I wasn’t happier or unhappier, but I did end up losing 15 pounds in weight.

I must be inspired by my weight loss and continue to avoid eating chocolate and drinking fizzy drinks, it’s obvious they’re not going to be good for me, health wise, so why keep consuming them?

It’s the same theme with smokers and drinkers they know they’re doing themselves harm by smoking and drinking and yet they continue to drink and smoke, like I’ve already made mention we’re supposed to be smart but all the evidence points to the unarguable fact that we’re idiots.

Be A Friendlier, Nicer Person

I’m neither friendly or nice and I’m happy for others to be unfriendly and nasty towards me, doesn’t bother me one bit, I just don’t care, fuck people, but it wouldn’t hurt me, well maybe not, to be friendlier and nicer though it does seem like a lot of hard work.

Over a decade ago I tried to be friendlier and nicer I managed two and half days on the third day I felt so ill I threw up in my mouth and thought, ‘fuck this shit!’ stopped being friendly and nice and immediately felt much better.

This time however I’m going to work through the feeling of sick, work hard at being nice, endeavour to be friendly, I don’t know why I’ve decided to make this attempt it just seems impossible and I’m the kind of person who wants the impossible to be possible, like wishing for a zombie apocalypse or an alien invasion or better yet an alien invasion during a zombie apocalypse. Hmm, why isn’t there a TV show featuring such an idea? Think The Walking Dead mashed with Falling Skies only well written with interesting characters. If only.

Strange Tales Featuring Adam Warlock

 Warlock-vs.-Magus

Adam Warlock is a character originally created by Jack Kirby but brought to my attention by artist/writer Jim Starlin. He’s a character with a troubled past created by insane, but clever, science guys to help them takeover the world Warlock eventually left Earth for the secret depths of deep dark space here he encountered the High Evolutionary received his Soul Gem and played at messiah.

When Jim Starlin begins his tales of the troubled one Adam Warlock has decided to spend, and end, his days in seclusion but he’s sought out by a female humanoid who in desperation hopes the messianic like Warlock can save the universe from a cosmic threat. This hopeful humanoid ends up in a tragic situation murdered by Grand Inquisitors of the Universal Church of Truth, an insane religious cult that has managed to subjugate much of the known universe, bent it to the will of the one who rules the Church the dread Magus.

Adam Warlock discovers that he and the Magus are one, though he figures the Magus is in fact his own soul split in two. With this idea in mind Adam Warlock flies out into the larger universe intent on finding the Magus and putting an end to his reign of terror.

Here within the adventures of Adam Warlock we’re not presented with your regular fighting crime type superhero we’re presented with a truly cosmic super being, a champion of life, he’s part traditional superhero in the way he looks but in the way he behaves and emotes it’s like reading the adventures of Michael Moorcock’s Elric but in space.

Once Adam Warlock sets off on his mission to tear down the Universal Church of Truth he’s immediately captured by forces from the Church and discovers how truly evil and demented the Church is, locked inside a dark dank room with mostly hopeless alien beings all with stories of tragedy and woe Adam Warlock determines to save everyone but by doing things his way, alone no longer will he be responsible for the lives and deaths of others.

Having inadvertently picked up a companion, Pip the degenerate Troll, Adam Warlock continues on his quest to end a part of himself and with the Soul Gem a vampiric curse resting upon his worried brow the Warlock knows his quest won’t be one pure of heart, a simple battle between good and evil, life and death.

Adam Warlock experiences psychedelic adventures, he’s a drug induced hero trapped in a drug induced nightmare, the series of adventures he’s traumatically forced to experience would break the hardiest of regular superheroes for not only are his experiences and adventures out of this world he’s suffering a lot of soul searching, an incredible amount of angst, and like the already mentioned Elric, and to a lesser extent Gollum, Bilbo and Frodo Baggins, he’s being tortured by the marvellous gem that sits upon his worried brow. When this greedy Infinity Gem leaps into service Adam Warlock experiences for himself all the thoughts, all the happiness and misery, all the love and loss of those the Soul Gem is consuming, imagine the kind of emotional pain a person would experience if they were able to feel what victims of their power feel. Imagine the inner turmoil we’d go through if we could truly feel what other people feel, I figure if we as a species we’re truly empathic we’d all be vegans, and crime, terrorism and war just wouldn’t exist. Unfortunately we’re not empathic it’s just an idea or lie we use to make ourselves feel a little bit better about ourselves while we watch something horrendous unfolding on a daily twenty four news channel.

Very quickly, because comic books move quickly, stories don’t breathe they thunder along at a breakneck pace and therefore Adam Warlock quickly confronts the mortal head of the Universal Church of Truth, the Matriarch, and she’s been conspiring against it’s supernatural leader, the god of the Church The Magus, her plans are to capture Adam Warlock subjugate his will and therefore become the supreme power in the universe especially when she reveals to Adam Warlock that The Magus is a future version of himself, this revelation shocks him to his very core unable to believe he could ever become an evil being.

In truth there’s no such thing as good and evil they’re just concepts created by powerful wealthy people to keep the idiot masses under control when humanity moved from being a close knit community to a sprawling unyielding mob of city folk. Sure a person can do a good deed, help the helpless, and a person can do something evil, like kill an innocent, but we’re far too complex to be merely good all the time or evil all the time. If people capable of evil acts were evil all the time they’d stand out in a crowd, and if people were good all the time life would beat them to the ground instead of good and evil there’s a middle ground where we are good sometimes, when it suits, and capable of evil if the need arises. For example, here and now I can rightly claim I’d never kick a dog or punch a baby but if the dog was attacking me I’d would have to kick it to prevent injury and if the baby had zombiefied and was trying to eat my face off I’d punch the little frakker, circumstances can dictate how good or evil our actions turn out to be. I don’t know if you, dear reader, watch horror movies but if there’s an evil baby, or older child, in a horror movie they’re far scarier and evil than an evil adult, well they are to me, Jason Voorhees in a hockey mask, pfft, evil little baby crawling along a ceiling, sneak attack from behind furniture and it’s brown underpants time.

Through a test of madness Adam Warlock reveals that the Magus is akin to the Wizard of Oz instead of an almighty powerful god able to see all the Magus is just a slightly off colour Adam Warlock but with an afro hairstyle, here in The Now the Magus’ choice of hair-do looks quite ridiculous but I suppose in the 1970’s a decade of anything goes it was perfectly acceptable. When the Magus made a later appearance in Infinity War his afro hair-do had been replaced with long hair and pony tail, again probably acceptable in the 1990’s but here in The Now plainly ridiculous, it’s best when creating comic book characters especially those of a cosmic nature to leave out the height of social fashion in later decades the characters look stupid instead of having a menacing presence. Though the Magus is a great character, almost as great as our hero Adam Warlock, his choice of hair-do lets him down, it would have been better if he’d been bald, maybe with an impressive looking tattoo upon his dome like noggin but I suppose in decades yet to be being bald and tattoo’s will look completely stupid and everyone from The Now without hair and adorned with tattoo’s will require some kind of cosmetic surgery to try and fit in with the times they find themselves lost within or tattoo’s will be the social norm and people will be tattooed shortly after birth and by the time they reach adulthood every inch of skin will be inked, it sounds horrendous to me, the only person in my hometown without a tattoo (I’m not sure if I’m the only person in town without a tattoo it just seems like it most of the time).

Via the machinations and manipulations by the dark lord Thanos, the Mad Titan, Adam Warlock finds a way to defeat himself but leaves the universe at the mercy of Thanos, the dark god knowing that he could never defeat The Magus only Warlock could and with The Magus out of the way Thanos surmises it will be a simple matter to end the life of the beleaguered, mentally challenged Adam Warlock and so it is Adam Warlock dies on the cold metal floor of Thanos’ command vessel but like all good, and bad, comic book characters death is not the end for Adam Warlock and many, many years later he would return to thwart Thanos’ subjugation of the universe via the Infinity Gauntlet but that’s a story for another time, or better yet not at all.