To Read: Indie comics for January

I’ve got a new column on the Newsarama blog called “Fringe Benefits.” It’s about independent comics.

I won’t link to every article I write over there, but this week I take a look at the indie stuff that’s been solicited for January and make some recommendations. There’s some good genre stuff on there.

Adventure Comic
Kana’s Island #1

Horror Comics
The Living and the Dead graphic novel
30 Days of Night: Spreading the Disease #2
Pieces for Mom: A Tale of the Undead
Death Comes to Dillinger trade paperback

Fantasy Comics
Dreamland Chronicles Volume 1 trade paperback
Bone Volume 5: Rockjaw: Master of the Eastern Border full-color hardcover
Conan and the Midnight God #1
Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser trade paperback

Science Fiction Comics
Star Trek: The Next Generation: The Space Between #1

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Holiday Road

Well, all things considered, I posted a lot more last week than I thought I would. This week will be an even bigger challenge though. I’m on vacation. Which means that I have a lot more time to write and post, but also a lot less routine to help keep me organized and on task.

Still, let’s give it a shot. I’ve got a couple of horror graphic novel reviews that I’d like to write and get posted on CWN by tomorrow and I need to write something up about the movie Dark Water, which I saw last week and really liked a lot. I’m also hoping to catch up on my stack of comics this week, but that’s going to be competing for my time against various movies and whatnot. Gonna go see The Prestige today, and I’ve got The Exorcism of Emily Rose and Pumpkinhead ready to go into the DVD player. Not to mention TiVoed movies like Dead Man, Frankenstein Conquers the World, and Santa’s Slay. There’s bound to be a classic in there somewhere.

And somewhere in all that, I’m starting a novel.

So, busy week. Hopefully I’ll be able to keep up with telling you about it.

Review: Silent Hill

I’ve never played the Silent Hill video game, but now I feel like I have. I understand that the plots are different, but the movie — with all of its maze-like passageways, physical challenges, and endless gathering of clues and equipment to be conveniently used later — is exactly like watching someone play a game. You can appreciate the story, but you get tired of watching the characters go down corridor after corridor; from level to increasingly harder level.

There is a cool story though. An adopted child has a chronic sleepwalking problem and screams out the name “Silent Hill” in her sleep. Her parents learn that she was born in a town called Silent Hill — which has since turned into a ghost town — so mother and daughter head off on a road trip to confront the past and hopefully end the sleeping problems. What they find in Silent Hill may be drawn out longer than is necessary, but it’s also genuinely creepy and a satisfying conclusion to the mystery.

New Comics: 10/25

Diamond’s shipping list is finalized for the week. Here’s what I’m getting:

Conan & the Songs of the Dead #4
52 #25
Jack of Fables #4
Justice #8
Secret Six #5
Seven Soldiers #1
Supergirl and the Legion of Super-Heroes #23
Trials of Shazam #3 (maybe)
Black Panther #21
Captain America #23
Civil War: Choosing Sides (leads into the re-launch of a new Alpha Flight comic)
Daredevil #90
Heroes for Hire #3
New Avengers #24
X-Men #192
Classic Battlestar Galactica #1
Xena #3

The Last Decent Megaplex

This week’s going to be a little wonky, posting-wise. Got another new guy starting at the day job and I get to do the training again. That usually slows me up on blog activity, but we’ll see.

In the meantime, Raiders was great last week. The print wasn’t awesome, but the movie still is, especially on the Ultrascreen. It’s been a while since I’d seen it; I’d forgotten how young Harrison Ford was.

The Marcus theater in Oakdale, Minnesota is my new favorite place to go to see movies. Not only does it have the Ultrascreen, but they also serve Pepsi and pizza at their concession stand. They had me at Pepsi, but any movie place that goes beyond hotdogs and “nachos” with their food choices is thinking in the right direction.

And they’ve got a good thing going with this older movies on the Ultrascreen deal too. They’re going to do it once a month. Not sure if I’ll make a point to see Goonies next month, but I’m all over seeing Die Hard on the big screen for Christmas.