Awesome Thing: Mythtor Who (or, a Nerd Collision of Epic Proportions)

In case you have somehow missed this, it's Mythbusters' Adam Savage.

In a safety cage between two Tesla coils.

Dancing to the Doctor Who theme.

Please to enjoy.

Pretty Sketchy: Atomika

The title character from Atomika: God is Red, as drawn by its writer and artist Sal Abbinanti, who has to have one of the coolest day jobs around: comic art dealer. If you've seen the Alex Ross Art booth at a convention, you've probably seen Sal... he's the guy in the nice suit. And he's a hell of a nice guy to boot. Sal drew this for me back at the one Wizard World Chicago I attended back in 2006. He had some choice words for Gareb & Company for sitting the Alex Ross booth back behind a wrestling ring, a skateboard ramp, and the loud, loud, LOUD Spike TV booth.

(Don't know why this scan is so small. Sorry about that!)

Friday Favorites: Who says this isn't the Marvel Age of Marvel Age?

I'm not a collector of old fanzines - even though I do keep meaning to go back and search for some old Amazing Heroes issues - but I have a hard time passing up issues of Marvel's old in-house promo mag Marvel Age whenever I come across them in the cheapie bins. It was one of my favorite publications from the House of Ideas when I was a kid, something I'd always pick up whenever I was able to make it to a comic book shop, and something I was happy to start getting regularly once it began getting newsstand distribution. It was the first thing I read that really made me feel plugged in to comics fandom, like I was finally let into the club and could now be shown "the good stuff."

And reading it today, it holds up surprisingly well. The old interviews and articles about then-new series are awesome nostalgia chow fodder, a definite time capsule of a very particular time in Marvel's publishing history. The annuals, which would often include short comics about a book's history and upcoming storylines, were especially good for that (track down Annual #3 if you can, featuring an issue-long edition of The Fred Hembeck Show, with these promo strips taking the place of talk show guest clips). It's fun to look back and see people who are big today just getting started, too. And, of course, it had some of the best, most eye-catching covers on the stands. Here are a dozen of my favorites:

(Click to make 'em Galactus-sized.)

How I Learned to Stop Hating Element Lad and Start Loving to Hate Element Lad

I've been picking up the 1980s Paul Levitz-written issues of The Legion of Super-Heroes these past few years, and though a lot may change over the course of the chunk of issues I've read, one thing remains pretty constant: Element Lad's kind of a douche.

I'm sure a lot of it stems from his power. I mean, read that description above: "Can alter one element into another." They might as well come out and just say "can pretty much turn anything into anything else," because that's what happens time and again. Various Legionnaires have all kinds of powers that laugh heartily in the face of physics, but changing the physical properties of things on the molecular level, therefore turning them into other things? Yeah, that's pretty huge right there. Godlike, even, which Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning used to good effect in the early aughts, but I'm getting ahead of myself here. Anyway, what I'm trying to say that if you were basically a living, breathing alchemist, with the power to basically make any form of matter your bitch, you'd probably start copping an attitude.

And Element Lad did, especially when he ended up as Legion leader, which in the Levitz years, was fairly often. And on those rare occasions he wasn't Legion leader, he'd complain that he wasn't Legion leader. "That's not what I would have done" was a frequent refrain, and he'd get even more riled up when the current leader was someone he saw as beneath him, like Dream Girl.

So I'd read these, and I'd wince whenever Element Lad came on panel to complain. Eventually, I started rooting for him to get his comeuppance, and I'd cheer when he did. Soon enough, I'd start hoping he'd show up in issues just so he could maybe get a little due payback, and I'd be disappointed when he didn't even appear.

That's when it dawned on me that Element Lad somehow became one of my favorite Legionnaires. The guy has an almost Bobby Heenan or Roddy Piper-like quality in my eyes, the sort of character you want to - have to! - boo and jeer, but at the same time, you want to see him show up because he's just so much fun to boo and jeer. He's the guy you absolutely love to hate.

And considering the Legion of Super-Heroes made its reputation by being almost professionally mean, conniving, and downright bitchy to one another for 50 years, that's really saying something.

Travels with Pirate Amy

Well, look, it's Pirate Amy Pond, from the upcoming Doctor Who episode "The Curse of the Black Spot." Being a companion of the Doctor, Amy gets to go a lot of places. Let's see what she's been up to, shall we?

Well, obviously we're in low content mode.

Sorry, folks. It's been a busy, emotional roller coastery time here at Trusty Plinko Stick World HQ.
My favorite aunt passed away.
It's nearing finals week at the school where I work.
It's nearing finals week at the school where I go to school.
My birthday came and went.
I've been feeling terrible lately.
I ran out of gas.
I had a flat tire.
I didn't have enough money for cab fare.
My tux didn't come back from the cleaners.
An old friend came in from out of town.
Someone stole my car.
There was an earthquake.
A terrible flood.

. . .

Okay, the first five of those are true, then, inevitably, it devolved into a Blues Brother rip-off. But yeah, hectic times. Which will continue a bit longer. I'll post when I can in the next few weeks, but it may not be very often, probably. So there's that.