Sunday, February 19, 2012

Digital Comics, Project Runway, and Comic Book Men

I'm probably the only blogger who will write about those two topics in the title--comics and Project Runway--together in one post. I just happen to be that weird combination of gay man and geeky fanboy. I remember thinking I was also probably the only person in the tristate area who carried both the latest edition of the New Yorker and the new I Zombie in their shoulder bag. I am also probaly the only kid who had Doctor Who paperbacks next to Doestoyevsky on his shelf.

But the strange dichotomy comes under the heading of what I've been reading and watching lately. As you may recall, my partner Jerry got me a Kindle Fire for Christmas and I have been downloading a lot of crap onto it. There's an app for Comics and I have so far downloaded about ten so far. I hope it doesn't take up too much space because I don't know how to put them in the cloud--don't you love these technical terms? I still don't know what cookies are.

I also wander if I should download comics because that will diminish my need for actual print comic as opposed to virtual ones. So far I have downloaded the latest issue of the Fantastic Four, a comic version of the Avengers--the British TV series with Diana Rigg and Patrick MacNee, not the Marvel Superhero group--an indie comic called Too Much Coffee Man, the first Man Mad comic from Mike Allred, Archie's gay friend Kevin Keller's premiere solo issue--see my earlier post on Rick Santorum. The app also had an entire run of the first 20 or so issue of Batman from the late 1930s to the early 1940s. I downloaded an issue featuring the work of Dick Sprang, one of the most prominent artists of the 1950s Batman with the square jaw and the ever-present smile.

This leads me to the new AMC (American Movie Classics) series Comic Book Men. Many cable reality shows are based on collectors of esoterica who have stores where weirdoes come in to sell their stuff and the hook is how valuable this junk is. Pawn Stars, American Pickers, etc. are examples of this genre. This new series is based on the real-life store in Red Bank, NJ owned by Kevin Smith called Jay and Silent Bob's Secret Stash. Smith made several movies incl. Clerks (which I've never seen). Side note: Isn't it weird how cable networks have all sort of melded together. AMC was originally a purveyor of classic Hollywood fare, but now they are a weird amalagm of original programming (Mad Men and The Walking Dead) and this reality stuff, just like TLC and Discover and the History Channel. Anyway, I watched the first episode of Comic Book Men and part of the second (too tired). It's strictly for comic book geeks like me. The four nerds--and I mean that as a compliment--who work in the store greet weirdos who come in off the street trying to sell them some crap from their attics. In between negotiations, the quartet does some goofy stunt like sell overstock at a flea market or play street hockey. I'll have to watch more to form a solid opinion, but it's kinda fun and the type of place I'd hang out at.

But I've grown disillusioned with Project Runway All Stars. The co-dependence between Kara and Kenley is not enough drama to keep me going. The biggest conflict each week is when someone uses someone else's sewing machine. I think the main problem is the designers have all been through this before and there is no Tim Gunn to shepherd them. The last episode I blogged about was the Miss Piggy challenge. Nothing very exciting has happened since.

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