Monday, May 14, 2012

Rob Liefeld and the power of Social Media.

I started reading comics back in 1992. Word of Superman's impending death and the X-Men cartoon gave me enough reason to check things out. My first comics were X-Men 17, What If? 48, and Action Comics 683. It took some time to realize that there were 2 X-books and 4 Superbooks, but I eventually started to venture out and pay attention to the writers and artists. Around this time Image Comics was making it's grand debut. I wasn't wise to the ins and outs of the comics market until I bought my first issue of Wizard Magazine. I was hardcore loyal to the Big 2, but I always checked out the Image books in the Wizard articles. I eventually branched out. Spawn was different, but not exactly reliable on shipping. I loved Wildcats, but didn't get on board until Jim Lee was gone. And then there was Rob Liefeld. Creator of Cable, Deadpool, and Youngblood.


I picked up the occasional Extreme Studios book from time to time but they never really made sense or had a good story to them. Everything was blood/death/strike or something to that affect. Rob kept producing books throughout the years and I kept on not buying the majority of them. In 1996 he was hired by Marvel to take over Captain America and Avengers under the banner Heroes Reborn. I was furious that his run interrupted the perfection that was Mark Waid and Ron Garney's run on Captain America, but I bought CA #1 anyway. I didn't make it to the second issue. Rob didn't make it to #7.


As the years went by I changed from a artist's fan to a writer's fan. I followed religiously the works of Dixon, Waid, Robinson, and Bendis. I watched the quality of the stories in comics improve and move away from gimmick covers. I bought a few issues of Rob's return to Marvel, but nothing really stood out to me. In late 2005 I stopped buying comics religiously. I kept up with certain books by buying the trade paperbacks (don't EVER call it a graphic novel in front of me) and making the occasional stop to another store where they didn't know me.

Here's where things start to change. While I was on the sidelines, Rob stayed busy. He went back to the Heroes Reborn universe. He made a return to Image. He started doing art for Deadpool and The Infinite. But the point that made me stand up and take notice of Rob Liefeld again was when I found him on Twitter. He spoke candidly about his career. He gave advice to people seeking entry into the industry. He gave his opinion on DC and Marvel. He also promoted his book like a madman. Rob was overseeing the relaunch of his Image books, penciling The Infinite, penciling and later writing Hawk and Dove, and then taking over scripts and art for Deathstroke, and plotting Grifter and Hawkman. This guy is taking on a hell of a workload AND promoting it like no other. So here's where I admit what I'm going to do tomorrow: I plan on buy some Rob Liefeld comics. That's right. The man who worships at the church of Bendis and Robinson is going to go Extreme. And yes Rob, I know I better hurry. I'll post my findings tomorrow.....stay tuned.

The first book I was able to get my hands on was Grifter #9. This is the book I was really looking forward to checking out because I've always been a huge Grifter fan. Steven T. Seagle's run on Grifter Volume One has always been the measuring stick for me.

The issue opens with immediate action. It feels like a good jumping on point for new readers, which is a good thing because I haven't read a comic with Cole Cash in it in years. Cole is on the run from several Daemonites, and while he's battling, we get a narration  establishing the story for those who just showed up. It gets the new direction started and introduces some new characters to the story. The art is great. It feels like the Grifter books of old. The dialogue is very much Cole Cash. I know this is the New 52, but the one thing that bothers me is that Grifter and Deathblow have never met before. I'm an old Team 7 fan, so I like the fact that all these guys were linked together. Having said that, I will be back for the next issue. Rob is credited with the story in this book, with the dialogue and art done by others. So it feels like he acts as the Head Writer/Executive Producer. Creating the vision and direction, but overseeing a creative team. Looks very promising.

I didn't make it to my local comic shop in time to purchase Deathstroke or Savage Hawkman #9. They were sold out everywhere I went. So I decided to go digital. Let's start with Hawkman. Hawkman has always been a character that confuses the hell out of me. Is he a reincarnated being? An alien? Both? Anyway, Rob gets a plot and dialogue credit for this book. Once again we're jumping into the story headfirst. I won't spoil the plot for you but the action starts quickly and the book leads to what seems to be a huge battle in the next issue. Having said that, I won't be back for it. Hawkman has never been my thing, and I don't know that the mighty James Robinson himself could get me interested in this book. 

I saved the best for last. Rob is writing and drawing Deathstroke #9. Call it nostalgia, call it crazy, call it whatever you want, here's the truth about Deathstroke: I fucking loved it. With the inclusion of Wildstorm's Zealot and the mission to track down LOBO, this book is a fun ride. I'm coming back for more. No need to know the backstory here. Deathstroke is the man and he's going after Lobo. Bravo, Rob.

So there you have it. I haven't been a regular comic reader in years, but thanks to Rob Liefeld's Twitter feed (@RobertLiefeld), I was driving all over Norman, Oklahoma to find his stuff. I'm coming back for 2 out of his 3 books next month. Hopefully I'm not the only one who has been influenced by Rob's social media powers. You can follow me on Twitter @CMJarrod. Also, feel free to check out my podcast in the right hand corner of this page.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Hello


Kurt Angle DUI

Kurt Angle was arrested early Sunday morning in Virginia for DUI. According to TMZ, Angle was observed swerving in between lanes on I-66 and was pulled over by State Troopers. Angle was arrested, taken to the Warren County Jail, and released after posting $2000 bond. This is Kurt's 3rd driving arrest in 4 years. Kurt also finds himself in a bit of a PR problem, as he is the current TNA World Champion, and he just started his campaign to return to the Olympics in 2012. The info can be found at www.kurtangle2012.com/

Kurt Angle Is Pissed

It's been a bad week for Kurt. He started of the week angry at his ranking in WWE's Greatest Superstars of All Time, in which he was ranked #34. He referred to the ranking as a "kick in the balls" and said he deserved to be in the Top 5. He then asked WWE to remove him from the list. One whopping day later, he issued an apology to anyone he offended, and said he was proud to be in the Top 50.

Santino Injured In Wreck



Santino Marella was injured in a car accident last week in Toronto. WWE.com had an exclusive out of character interview with Marella in which he described the accident. Marella suffered a separated left shoulder and will not be on Raw.

Another Cast Member Announced
Prince Devitt is the latest person to join the Wrestling Revolution Project. He joins Colt Cabana, Len Olson, Ken Doane, Alex Reynolds, Kenny Omega, MVP, Sami Callihan, Daivari, Emil Sitoci, and Luke Gallows in this new new project that, and I quote:
"is a 13-episode seasonal concept built on wrestling storytelling with a complete three act narrative structure. Cutting the cord completely from the modern wrestling industry chronology, it's the launch of a new universe with new characters and new rules. WRP aims to combine modern, relevant themes with compelling in-ring storytelling to create a unique wrestling television experience."
I'm liking the lineup so far and am interested to see where the project goes. Perhaps we can see more of Kenny Omega vs his greatest opponent.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

What You Missed In Wres-- Entertainment This Week.

Hello world, and once again, here's what you missed in the world of wrestling entertainment.


Draft
In case you've been out of the loop, here are the picks from the draft, starting with Smackdown to Raw: Jack Swagger, Kelly Kelly, JTG, Drew McIntyre, Curt Hawkins, Chris Masters, Kofi Kingston, Tyler Reks, Beth Phoenix, Rey Mysterio, The Big Show, Alberto Del Rio. Moving to Smackdown from Raw: Daniel Bryan, The Great Khali , Jimmy Uso, Alicia Fox, William Regal, Yoshi Tatsu, Natalya, Jey Uso, Ted DiBiase, Tyson Kidd, Tamina, Alex Riley, Sheamus, Randy Orton, Mark Henry, Sin Cara. So Orton moves on to replace Edge as the top face, Del Rio gets to play on the A Show, and Sin Cara gets to be on the show where he can be edited.

Batista won't be in Strikeforce

Dave Batista recently told TMZ that his deal with the Strikeforce MMA company have fallen through. Batista was training in hopes of a fight early this year, and up until his loss and leaving Strikeforce, Bobby Lashley was his rumored opponent. Dave says the recent purchase of Strikforce by Zuffa is to blame. So start your "Next TNA Champ" jokes and let the speculation begin on whether or not The Animal will return to the WWE.

Punking Out?



Rumor has it that CM Punk's contract with WWE is expiring soon and he's debating on whether to reup or not. I know how these rumors go, but if it is true, Punk may be on the way out. He would most likely be taking some time off to heal and recover from burnout. Being Straight Edge and having all those injuries can't be good on his body. I personally hope he goes the Big Show/Chris Jericho route and just takes some time off and makes his return when he is ready. Richard Gray is reporting that the WWE put Punk's girlfriend Beth Phoenix on Raw to appease him and sway him into their good graces so he'll sign a new contract. This will be a story to watch.

It's still real to JR.

Jim Ross was injured on Monday night when Michael Cole's tooth went straight into his hand all the way to the bone. Ross said doctors will be keeping a close eye on it to make sure there is no infection, but he will be wrestling entertaining at Sunday's Pay Per View.

Stone Cold Rick Roll

The video of the week.



Ric Flair's Shoulder

Slick Ric is going to have shoulder surgery. NO he's not. Is he? Tazz said yes, JR said no, Tazz said ooops, nevermind, bad info.

Who to follow on Twitter

Randy Orton is this week's selection. He's sarcastic, funny, and not at all the punt crazy Viper he plays on TV. 3 of his best:

  • Point being, instead of taking offense to someone using your move, consider it a sign of respect.
  • A kid just rang our door bell and ran. He jumped in a white car. Unfortunately for him, I have 8cameras covering every angle of my home...
  • I saw her backstage and said hi, took a picture with her. Tried to get a convo going, but the kid had know idea wut to think! (On meeting Angry Miz Girl.)

Social Media Spotlight

You've heard it a million times now, Zack Ryder is getting himself over on Youtube. If only WWE would listen. Here is the latest episode of Z True Long Island Story.






That's it for this week. Don't forget Extreme Rules is this Sunday. Follow me on Twitter @CMJarrod, and have a great weekend.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

What You Missed In Wres-- Entertainment This Week.

Hello all. It's Tuesday and so far this week, nobody has been forced to retire. Maybe a few threats, but nothing concrete. Here's what you missed since last weekend.


Chikara King of Trios

Chikara held it's annual King of Trios tournament this past weekend in Philidelphia. The Colony won the tournament defeating Team FIST in the Main Event of Night 3. The big story coming out of this weekend though was Sean "X-Pac/6Pac/Syxx" Waltman participated as the 1-2-3 Kid, a persona not seen in years. Waltman received a standing ovation and a "Please Come Back" Chant after his match with El Generico. He addressed the crowd and said this may be his last year to wrestle and posted this note in the locker room at the end of the night.


Neidhart arrested

Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart was arrested in Tampa on Monday for driving without a license and operating an unregistered vehicle. He was released after paying a $750 bond. This is the second time in a year Neidhart has been on the wrong side of the law, the last time being September of 2010 when he was charged with 6 felony counts and gave us this mugshot:

R-Truth's Smoking Controversy

On last night's Raw R-Truth turned heel and attacked John Morrison. But that's not what everyone was talking about today. Truth lit up a cigarette after the attack and blew smoke in Morrison's face. Besides the crowd chanting "That's illegal", Truth made it on TMZ and has drawn the attention of Patrick Reynolds, Executive Director of TobaccoFree.org. Probably not the reaction Vince was looking for. WWE released a statement saying: "The negative effect smoking has on one’s health and physical performance was a part of a storyline on last night’s Monday Night Raw. Negative depictions of tobacco use on television are not unusual and can be seen on other TV-PG shows." And that's the Truth. Ba dump bump.

Extreme Rules Card updated



Joey Styles announced on his Twitter page that CM Punk and Randy Orton will face each other in a Last Man Standing match at Extreme Rules. This adds to the card along with the Ladder Match for the World Heavyweight Championship between Christian and Alberto Del Rio and the Triple Threat Cage Match between Miz, John Cena, and John Morrison.


Jackson Andrews released

"Hey kid, good news! We're moving you up to the big show. You'll be Tyson Kidd's bodyguard! The new HBK and Diesel!" *2 weeks later* "Pack your bags Andrews, you're going back to Florida." Just when he thought it couldn't get any worse, Jackson Andrews has been removed from the FCW Roster page and word is he's been released. We hardly knew him...

Jarrett injured at Lockdown

The Wrestling Observer is reporting that Jeff Jarrett suffered broken ribs in his 2 out of 3 falls match with Kurt Angle Sunday. Angle said on twitter that he separated his shoulder. He also said he used an RKO out of respect towards Randy Orton. Anti Twitter hacking? Jeff meanwhile, will be recovering at home with this:


WWE Draft is next week


Because the Brand Extension has been so strong and you rarely see a Smackdown Star on Raw, be sure to tune into Raw this Monday for the Draft Lottery. Chances are a Main Event level person will be moved to the Smackdown side to make up for the loss of Edge.

Lockdown Results


Other than Jeff Jarrett being injured, here's what you need to know about Lockdown:

  • Max Buck won an X-Division Xscape Match featuring Robbie E, Chris Sabin, Jay Lethal, Jeremy Buck, Suicide, Amazing Red, and Brian Kendrick
  • Ink Inc. defeated Crimson & Scott Steiner, Eric Young & Orlando Jordan, and The British Invasion
  • Mickie James defeated Madison Rayne to become the new Knockouts Champion
  • Samoa Joe defeated The Pope
  • Matt Morgan defeated Hernandez
  • Jeff Jarrett defeated Kurt Angle in a 2 out of 3 Falls Match
  • Sting defeated Mr. Anderson and RVD to retain the TNA Championship
  • Fortune defeated Immortal in a Lethal Lockdown

Who to follow on Twitter


The world of Twitter is filled with many wrestling entertainment personalities, but in this section I will show you who is the cream of the crop. This week's honor goes to the Extreme Announcer himself, Joey Styles. @JoeyStyles is filled with inside jokes, flat out honest commentary, and WWE exclusives. Since his WWE talent contract expired, Styles has been the go to guy when it comes to pointing out he obvious flaws in wrestling.entertainment. I also got a heads up on a huge WWE Shop sale by following him. Here's a few of his tweets:

  • Zack Ryder puts the "Entertainment" in World W-------- Entertainment. Great cameos by Scott and Colt
  • Today in 1908, Frank Gotch defeated Georg Hackenschmidt for the World Heavyweight Title. Tonight, Snooki won a match at WWE WrestleMania 27
  • WRESTLING WRESTLING WRESTLING WRESTLING WRESTLING WRESTLING WRESTLING WRESTLING WRESTLING WRESTLING WRESTLING!...FUTURE ENDEAVORS...WWE.COM
Media Spotlight of the Week


Seems like everybody has some sort of social media outlet these days, and many, like Zack Ryder, are using them to show a side of themselves we don't see on the weekly shows. This week I'm spotlighting a former WWE Superstar, ROH Tag Champ, and the current NWA World Heavyweight Champion, Colt Cabana. Every week at welovecolt.com/ Colt talks to various people in the industry. He's been everywhere, including FCW, OVW, ROH, IWA: Mid South, and WWE, so he knows everybody. It also helps when CM Punk is a friend. Currently on Episode 38, Colt has talked with people ranging from this weeks guest Dave Lagana, to CM Punk, Homicide, Evan Bourne, Austin Aries, Luke Gallows, Mikey from the Spirit Squad, and many more. New shows come out every Thursday on WeLoveColt.com and iTunes.

That's it for this week. I welcome comments here and by email at toamuseme@gmail.com. Follow my antics on twitter at @CMJarrod. Thanks for reading, hope to be back next week to show you what you missed this week in wrestling Entertainment.

Peace!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Crap!

Here we are, a month later. I promised all this storm coverage and then it didn't do much. But the real reason I haven't been on here? I went back to work. I did an interview with my old job, then a week later had to drive 50 miles in the snow to take a drug test. I started again again again (this is the 3rd time) on Valentine's Day.

I was welcomed back to hell with the news that the closest route they could give me was 45 minutes away. I also got to work 6 days in a row. Try not working for 10 months and then jump right back in to heavy lifting for 6 days straight.

Unfortunately, I had another event to go through after my 6 days of hell. After 101 years, my Great Grandmother passed away. I won't go into specifics because I don't think the internet is the place to air your personal business. I'm sorry she's gone, but she lived a long wonderful life.

So I just finished Week 2, and I don't feel as bad as I did last week, but I know I can't do this forever. I'm looking into some other options now, but it's nice to have steady income. Now to catch up on my podcast.

This is the last video I watched...

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Damn this Oklahoma weather.

So here we are at the end of January, and I'm still going places in shorts. Only 1/3 of the time do I freeze my ass off. The next two days are suppose to be wonderful. Temperatures in the upper 60s, the sun out, all on the anniversary of the biggest ice storm in the state's history. So here's the swerve: Monday it's suppose to be icy, Tuesday has the potential for snow. Shit.

I hate ice more than I hate snow. I hate ice more than thunderstorms, tornadoes, hail, and the dreaded thundersleet. I don't like the fact that MLAt (Her JLo-esque nickname she has no idea I'm using) has to work on Monday morning, and Monday and Tuesday night. And next week it will be in the 60s again I'm sure. That annoying phrase "If you don't like the weather in Oklahoma..." is ringing true this week. I hope I can get out there and enjoy the sun while I can.

If the weather gets bad, be certain you'll hear about it on ToAmuseMe. Located right there --->


Music today from Kula Shaker, one of the first CD's I ever bought.