College is nearly done.

For the past two years I've been in college, taking film studies. I have 2 weeks of classes left. Although I'll be back next year, taking filmmaking proper, I can't wait for school to be done. From September to April I have hardly any time for anything other than school. It is because of school I have a giant stack of comics and games to catch up on. I guess with summer coming up I'll also have to start looking for a job. Oh well. Who else is in school (whether it be college or high school) and are glad for the imminent arrival of summer.


Prepping for Thor

As I'm sure many of you know, Thor is coming out soon. Even though I don't read Thor outside of his Avengers appearances, the film seems interesting enough. In order to gain the fullest appreciation out of Thor, I have been growing a Thor like beard for the past couple of months. However, there is a problem: My facial hair is blond. So unless your standing right in front of me, you'd never know that I look like a lumberjack. My question to you fine people: How do I maximize my beard growing potential? Do I just do manly things for 2 weeks or do I find that hair growth formula Homer Simpson used (minus the hilarious results). Tips are welcome.


Thor: God of Soft Drinks

Let me spin you a yarn. On my way home from class today, I walked into my local Macs (think Canada's answer to 7-11), to stock up on surgery drinks and other diabetes inducing goodies. Front and centre in the store was a display for the Thor Dr.Pepper cans. I like Dr.Pepper and I don't mind Thor at all, so obviously the purchase was a no brainier for me. Much to my surprise however, these were no ordinary cans of Thor Dr.Pepper ... they were collectable!! COLLECTABLE! Let that word sink in for you. 

 These will be worth thousands of dollars in ten years.
 These will be worth thousands of dollars in ten years.
For anyone not in the know, anything with COLLECTABLE stamped on it will obviously become worth thousands of dollars within a very short period of time. Using my patented X-Force #1 strategy, I bought dozens of these cans because I am obviously the only person buying this collectable item and therefore it will be worth more money later on. Arriving home, I shoved aside my collectable Phantom Menace Pepsi cans and my limited edition Mountain Dew throwbacks. Sure my Phantom Menace Pepsi's might grab 2-3 dollars on ebay but they have nothing on the collectable Thor Dr.Peppers. You know why? THESE BABIES ARE MEGA-SIZED. They are the size of a tall boy of beer, but instead of alcoholic goodness, these cans are filled with 23 things. 23 of what? I don't know, the can doesn't say.  I'm assuming because it is Thor Dr. Pepper, it is filled with the power of Mjolnir. 
Also being in Canada, the can is presented in 2 languages: English and not English.I can only conclude that this will add to the collectors value of the can. The front of the can is split into 2: the top half for the Dr. Pepper logo, while the bottom half is adorned with a picture of Thor
I think it may be Chinese. 
I think it may be Chinese. 
holding his hammer, in what can only be described as sheer boredom. Informatively added is "Only In Theaters" , just in case I forget where to see a movie. The standard Marvel logo is near the bottom of the can, near where the words "soft drink" are added. I'm really glad the makers of this fine collectors item decided to tell me what it was I would be drinking and where to see a movie. 
Approximate Value: 1,000,000 Dollars 
Approximate Value: 1,000,000 Dollars 
If nothing else, Dr.Pepper has certainly established itself as the drink of the gods. At least the fictitious comic book to movie kinds. And remember those X-Force #1 issues? I got a whole bunch of them for free, last free comic book day. Suckers didn't know they were giving away gold. 

So about event comics.

I don't like them. Ever since I got into comics (around the time Civil War was wrapping up) event comics have happened every year. To this point, there hasn't been a single event that I can say was awesome. Anyways I stumbled across this image on the awesome tumblr that is DC Women Kicking Ass. I think it sums up event comics pretty well. 

 I'd read it.
 I'd read it.

My Comics Love Story



                Like many readers, my journey into reading comics started as a casual interest. When I was in grade 11 (in the ancient times that was 2007), I was working at a local radio station as part of a co-op. Since this radio station was in downtown London, I would often skip class and hangout downtown for the rest of the day until my mom got off work (she also worked in downtown London). Often, I would walk by a store called Heroes Cards and Comics. One day I walked in not thinking about what I wanted or having any real comic knowledge beyond Spawn and Marvel Ultimate Alliance.  After being temporarily bewildered by all of the stuff in the store, I made my way to the back issues area of the store. There were thousands upon thousands of issues of all sorts and I was immediately seduced and sucked into the comic book world.  I bought some Spawn issues and was content.

                The second time I went to Heroes Cards and Comics, I had a vague knowledge of what I wanted. Going up to the guy behind the counter, I asked him about Marvel Zombies, a miniseries that was being talked about on the internet quite a bit at the time. He told me, that while Marvel Zombies was fun, its writer Robert Kirkman, had a much more serious (and better) book called The Walking Dead.  I bought it and the first giant hardcover trade of Marvel Knights Spider-Man (the Millar run). As winter slowly turned into spring, I bought more and more back issues. Any money I could spare, I would spend on issues, catching up on the years that I had not read comics. Eventually I had the entire Ostrander run of Suicide Squad (one of my favorite books ever) and was all caught up on the Walking Dead. It was during this time that I started making my first forays into other titles.   Moon Knight, Ghost Rider, Birds of Prey, and Wonder Woman all became favorite characters and all must read series for me (even if the series themselves were hit and miss).

                Eventually Heroes moved across the street to a larger location and I caved in and bought a membership to the store. Basically, I gave a buck and they gave me a discount (the size of which depending on how many books are on my pull list) and hold onto any books I want.  I maxed out my discount pretty quickly and read 20+ books regularly. For a year and half, while a student, I worked part time at a call centre. We would call out and do surveys about asinine stuff with the Americans across the border. Our neutral accents got the contracts, and apparently American’s think we’re fun to talk to doing surveys about hydro, medical plans, politics and even iPods.  Anyways, while working at this call centre I met more comic book fans, and my scope of titles increased ever more. I read and bought a lot of comics during this time. It was not unusual for me to go through over a dozen comics during an eight hour shift – more if I wasn’t getting many surveys done. Because I lived at home with my parents (hey I’m only 20) any money that I didn’t save for college was almost entirely spent on comics.

                It’s been almost 4 years to the date, when I knew that I loved comics. Over those 4 years I’ve matured as both a reader and as a person. I’m not the uneducated chum I was four years back. I understand the trends, themes, and tropes that are in comics. I’ve formed opinions and thoughts on comics. I love the good multi-cultural characters and the strong portrayals of women in comics. What I once loved, I don’t necessarily love anymore. I don’t work at that call centre anymore and being in college has eaten up my comic reading time (I constantly have a stack of comics that I’m working through) but one thing that hasn’t changed is my love of comics and the community around it. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without them.