Inside Man

I checked out the new Steven Moffat TV series Inside Man (streaming on Netflix in the US) because of the cast and the idea of a “death row detective”, although I’ve been very iffy on his skills as a solo showrunner. The show lived down to my expectations, with outstanding acting trying to support a completely ludicrous core premise. The cast includes: David Tennant as Harry, the local vicar in a picture-perfect English village Stanley Tucci as Mr. Grieff (Dickensian, […]

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Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons

I’d about given up on the original DC animated movies. They’re either stories I already read as comics — and I didn’t feel a need to see the characters move, with added mature content — or they exist mostly for big battles. Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons was a pleasant change by focusing more on character interaction. I liked it a lot more than I expected — although it’s very male, with the only female characters being […]

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Smut Peddler Reprinted for 10th Anniversary

My, how time flies. Back in 2010, I was approached to help with an anthology of comic erotica. The goal was to assemble sex-positive, female-friendly dirty comics. The book, the first Smut Peddler collection, ended up successfully crowdfunding in 2012, making this the 10th anniversary. Now Iron Circus has announced “a new, DELUXE tenth anniversary edition! Featuring all the groundbreaking stories included in the original anthology, we’ve gussied up this version with tons of extras, including a foreword from Stoya, […]

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Sherlock Holmes: The Case of the Missing Martian

Sherlock Holmes stories are hard to write. Getting that blend of mystery, adventure, and deduction right, particularly in another period, is tricky. Even more particularly when it comes to comics, since comfortable scenes of friendly interactions between Holmes and Dr. John Watson, or incidents deducing a new client, are conversational, not visual. I suspect that’s why so many Sherlock Holmes comics, especially those set in the Victorian period, tend to be mashups. Holmes vs. Dracula, or Mr. Hyde, or Lovecraftian […]

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Blue Box Volume 1

Blue Box by Kouji Miura tries to refresh two common manga genres, the sports competition and the school romance, by putting them into the same book. Taiki plays badminton. He’s got a crush on the year-older Chinatsu, who’s on the girls’ basketball team. Her dedication and skills inspire him to vow that he will practice and work hard enough to make it to the national competition for his sport. Meanwhile, he’s thrown together with her in unusual circumstances, providing plenty […]

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Minions: The Rise of Gru

As the holiday season approaches, it’s good to know about a movie that a bunch of family members can enjoy. Based on how much we, a couple of adults, liked this movie, I nominate Minions: The Rise of Gru. (Screenplay by Matthew Fogel, directed by Kyle Balda, Brad Ableson, and Jonathan Del Val.) The previous Minions movie (also hilarious) was set in 60s England; this one moves to the suburbs of the 1970s, where Gru (voiced by Steve Carell) is […]

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Heart Takes the Stage: A Heart of the City Collection

The comic strip Heart of the City, created by Mark Tatulli, debuted in 1998. In 2020, the strip was passed to Steenz, and the little girl named Heart went to middle school. This volume, Heart Takes the Stage, is the first collection of Steenz’s strips. I was curious to read the collection because I’d never heard of the comic (as I stopped reading the newspaper several years ago), and I liked Steenz’s work on Archival Quality. Plus, the idea of […]

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Cat Massage Therapy Volume 3

It’s usually around the third volume that I start wondering if a series has legs. The idea behind Cat Massage Therapy by Haru Hisakawa is pretty simple, after all: having cats walk or sleep on you is relaxing. Could this concept support three books? Yes, it turns out. Cat Massage Therapy volume 3 was a pleasure to read, a relaxing escape. The second book introduced some new “cast members” (cats), so this one just lets them do their things. I […]

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