Welcome back to the conclusion of the Franken-Castle storyline from 2010. It was originally published by Marvel as The Punisher Vol. 3 and became the title Franken-Castle with issue #17 until the series ended with issue #21. Rick Remender was the writer of the series. The majority of the art was done by Tony Moore with Roland Boschi doing some fill-in issues. Dan Brereton painted 2 issues (The origin of Hellsgaard and the final issue) and John Romita Jr did the art for a one-shot.
Last week we discussed how the Punisher was murdered and dismembered and how Morbius, the living vampire stitched Frank back together to help fight the Hunter of Monsters.
In the podcast this week, I talk about the origin story of Robert Hellsgaard and why he hates monsters so much. We also uncover the artifact that Hellsgaard is searching for and why he wants it so bad. This leads to the conflict between Frank Castle AKA Franken-Castle and Hellsgaard and how that conflict is finally resolved.
Once Frank takes care of that problem, he goes on a revenge tour and one of the stops is Daken (the guy that killed him). This leads to a 4 part cross-over event between Franken-Castle and Dark Wolverine. I posted the cover of the Franken-Castle #19 which is part 2. This 4 part event is essentially a 4 issue fight.
We end on issue #21 that explains how Frank Castle gets his old body back and returns to the status quo of the Punisher again.
I end the podcast with previous attempt at telling a different Punisher story with the 4 part miniseries – Punisher: Purgatory. Even though this series had fantastic art by Bernie Wrightson, everyone (including myself) hates this miniseries and I try to explain why.
This week we are going to review a Punisher comic storyline that will cause fans of the franchise to either be happy to talk about it or shun it with shame. I am always ecstatic to talk about Franken-Castle.
Rick Remender wrote the Volume 3 of Marvel’s Punisher comic in 2010. His run ran from issue 1 to the final issue 21 and there was a limited series Punisher: In the Blood that followed. He had several very talented artists helping him on these books which include: Jerome Opena, Tan Eng Huat, Tony Moore, Roland Boschi, John Romita Jr and Dan Brereton.
We will be talking specifically about the storyline that started in an Invasion one shot called: Dark Reign: The List – Punisher #1 and ran through issues #11 – 21 of the Punisher. This is know as the Franken-Castle storyline.
To sum up the story: Frank Castle AKA The Punisher is killed by Dark Wolverine AKA Daken (illegitimate psychotic son of Logan), Castle is then revived by Morbius, the living vampire to help defend the Legion of Monsters from the group called Hunters of Monsters Special Force lead by the fanatical Robert Hellsgaard. This is just the beginning of the story.
The storyline can be divisive based on how hardcore a fan you are of the Punisher. If you think Punisher stories should always be grim, gritty and realistic as possible then you are going to hate this story. But if you are like me, you know the Punisher lives in the Marvel Universe where crazy and insane things happen all the time so why can’t those nutty things happen to the Punisher? If you feel this way then you will love this story.
I broke this storyline down into 2 podcasts. It starts with this one 295 and will end next week with 296. In 295, I cover why Dark Wolverine killed Frank Castle, why Frank initially refuses to help Morbius and why he changes his mind and we get to know Hellsgaard a little. I will go into more detail on Hellsgaard in 296. There are spoilers in this and next week’s podcasts and I highly recommend you go purchase the trade paperback called Franken-Castle. I also go over a little writing history of Rick Remender and the Marvel characters he worked on from 2010 to 2012. I highly recommend picking these trades up as well.
We live in a time when men claim to be great in their rhetoric but their actions say otherwise. And even though they claims for these men are confirmed false, they still have thousands of die hard supporters. If only we had a silver alien from another planet to testify to humanity and call out these false saviors.
Unfortunately, this is the real world so we won’t get the Silver Surfers help but we have the next best thing: Silver Surfer: Parable – the collected trade by Stan Lee and Moebius (Jean Giraud) published originally by Epic Comics and later collected in trade by Marvel. Maybe if we can convince everyone on the planet to read this comic, we will have less strife in the world.
Silver Surfer: Parable is a really great read. The immediate attraction is the great Moebius art. His unique and detailed take of Galactus and the Silver Surfer are fantastic. You also are getting Stan Lee writing a comic in almost 20 years. Stan Lee is at his peak with the dialogue through the 2 issues. This was written in the late 80s were the rule of the land according to Wall Street’s Gordon Gecko was “Greed is good.” Lee and Moebius put out a book that stated beware false idols that espoused avarice and power because they will lead to your downfall.
I am reviewing it 30 later and the message still needs to be broadcast to all people and is as relevant as ever. If you have never read this, go out and purchase it. It is a book you will be revisiting many time over.
In the podcast, I go over the history of the Silver Surfer and Galactus from Fantastic Four #48 and how it relates to this updated version in Parable. I talk about how Stan Lee and Jack Kirby created the Silver Surfer using the Marvel Method and how Stan pitched the Marvel Method to Moebius for Parable and how Moebius was stunned at this process. I then go into talking about the story.
Alien Legion is a comic that was originally produced by Epic Comics imprint under Marvel Comics in 1984. It was created by writers Carl Potts and Alan Zelenetz with artist Frank Cirocco. Potts described the story “The French Foreign Legion in space”.
The original series ran for about 18 issues and was relaunched with writer Chuck Dixon and artist Larry Stroman. This series would be cancelled after a year but Alien Legion would make sporadic appearances as prestige miniseries through the 1990s.
My exposure to Alien Legion was Chuck Dixon and Larry Stroman’s run on it. I enjoyed their stories very much in the 90s when I read them. I bought some Trade collections that were put out by Titan Books in the early 2000s. Tonight, I am reviewing a re-read of the story Alien Legion: Tenants in Hell by Dixon/Stroman.
Tenants in Hell was a fun re-read. As I mention in the podcast, it felt like a very 90s comic: references to Cyberpunk and Corporatism. Grim and Dark situations and characters. Total Nihilism and hope is for losers. I enjoyed these stories in my youth but they seem a bit rote in my re-read. These are still entertaining stories by they are reminders of a different time and seem antiquated now.
I keep the review mostly spoiler free but this is only a 2 part miniseries. There are plenty of Alien Legion stories out there if you want to read more.
I continue celebrating my birth month with comic related items that I don’t think Jon would be interested in reviewing, and to be honest, I didn’t have much interest in this week’s item but I did have fun reviewing it…
Man-Thing: The Movie
The purpose of this podcast is to help promote comics and other items like movies and shows that are related to the comic industry and that are fun to read and watch. This week, I am making an exception.
Man-Thing: The Movie is bad. Really. It is a terrible film and should never been release or even made. If it’s so bad, why am I talking about it? Well, it is a perfect example of how Hollywood gets its mitts on a comic property and instead of taking some time to read the backstory of the character and incorporating that history into the movie, they decide to make a typical Hollywood movie that is a comic book movie in name only.
Movies like The Shadow, The Phantom, the 80s Captain America movie and the Dolph Lundgren Masters of the Universe and Punisher movie are all prime examples of how Hollywood got comic book movies wrong.
Look at the designs of Man-Thing. Here is a comparison of the comic versus the movie creature:
On the left is what the comic version is supposed to look like. The picture on the right looks more like Swamp Thing than Man-Thing. Also, the movie has Man-Thing have these jittery tendrils. Do you see any tendrils in the picture on the left? Not really. Maybe the things on his face but that is it. The movie has him loaded with tendrils. So much so, that you may mistake him for Cthulhu.
Here is the end scene of the movie. It shows how wrong the movie got the design of Man-Thing and also sums up the entire plot in 2 minutes…
Even though this movie is a hot mess. I have a good time going over the history of the character, talking about the terrible acting and throwing out ideas for good Man-Thing projects for the future.
I am sticking with the funny book theme from last month’s Howard the Duck and transitioning into Marvel‘s 1989 miniseries, Damage Control.
Damage control was conceived by the late, great comic duo of Dwayne McDuffie (writer) and Ernie Colon (artist). The premise is “a sitcom within the Marvel Universe”.
The story follows around: Anne Marie Hoag (founder), John Porter (account executive), Robin Chapel (traffic manager), Eugene “Gene” Strausser (Technician) and Lenny Ballinger (foreman) as the run the company, Damage Control – the business that cleans up after superheroes and villains.
The comic feels like it was scripted as a 80s sit-com: Porter and Chapel are rivals but there is some sexual tension between them. Hoag is a stoic but sage figurehead, Strausser is the nerd that helps his friends when they are in a jam and Lenny is the gruff but lovable blue collar comic relief.
There is no major overarching storyline. Each issue can be read and enjoyed individually. I got a few chuckles out of the re-read of the series and compare it to a great sit-com, Cheers. You may draw comparisons to similar sit-coms. It is a blue print on how you can make a sit-com in the Marvel Universe. Disney, are you reading this?
Enjoy the podcast and then read the comic. It’s a mostly spoiler free review.
Another week and a new episode of the Comics Misremembered Podcast is created. It is just me, Jim doing the podcast this week. Jon will hopefully be joining us in some later podcasts but for the month of November, it will be me.
November is also my birthday month so I will be celebrating all month long with comics that are near and dear to me that we haven’t covered yet.
Week 1 of the month long celebration, we are covering Howard the Duck (the 1970s run).
Howard the Duck was created by writer Steve Gerber and artist Val Mayerick on the pagers of Adventure into Fear featuring The Man-Thing #19 (Dec. 1973) published by Marvel Comics.
I started collecting comics in the early 80s. I started with titles like ROM and Captain Carrot and the Amazing Zoo Crew (look – I was young, okay!). The comic shop I was going to at the time had a back issue room and I discovered Howard the Duck! These issue excited me because they were old (at least 10 years!) and I could buy large chunks for close to cover price. I bought up the majority of the run there. I thought the art was great and the stories were pretty funny too.
A few years would pass and there was news that a Howard the Duck Movie would be coming out and it would be directed by George Lucas! This guy did Star Wars!! The Howard movie is going to be awesome!
Well, it wasn’t but now re-reading the Howard comic run, I can see how they got some of the ideas for the movie. I break this down in the podcast.
The comic also had lots of philosophical sub-text that I did not pick up on as a child that I see while reading as an adult. This was a well made, smart comic that appeals to kids and adults. If you never read the original comics, I highly recommend picking them up in collected trades.
I know it was hard to wait a week for our review but thanks for coming back! We continue with our examination of the Wolverine miniseries written by Chris Claremont and drawn by Frank Miller. It was published by Marvel in 1982. We also compare the miniseries to the 2013 The Wolverine movie and show you how much they used from the miniseries in the movie.
Some things you can expect to hear in this podcast:
We continue to spoil a comic that came out almost 40 years ago and has been recapped in issues of Uncanny X-Men, X-Men and The Wolverine regular series so it’s not much of a spoiler.
I call Yukio the wrong name for half the podcast and Jon does not pick up on it until I correct myself.
We know our 80s American Asian cinema – we go off on a 10 minute tangent to talk about how Asian culture influenced media during the 1980s.
Jon and I try to piece together why Storm has her “punk rocker” look on the final 2 pages of issue #173 of Uncanny X-Men.
All this and more hilarity with this podcast. Thanks for listening.
A new week and a new comic. This week we are talking about Chris Claremont and Frank Miller‘s collaboration on the 1983 Marvel miniseries Wolvervine.
We recently read the trade paperback of the 4 issue miniseries and took some time out to watch the 2013 The Wolverine movie. There are many moments the movie uses which is directly taken from the miniseries.
At the start of the podcast, we go over a interview that Chris Claremont told Sean Howe about how he trapped Frank Miller and forced him to work on the miniseries with him.
This chance encounter lead to an epic miniseries that all the fans demanded. 1982 was when the Uncanny X-Men were at the height of their popularity. The character that everyone wanted more of was Wolverine. He was the mysterious, animal bad boy with the shadowy past. The miniseries was a way to add more dimensions to him. Everyone expected a hack and slash tale (and they got that) but they also got to know the sensitive side of Logan.
We are talking about the entire Wolverine miniseries and the movie so we will be spoiling all of the plot points. The miniseries is almost 40 years old so some of the original story has been retold in other comics so if you are long time follower of Wolvie, then you know most of this story.
It is Jon’s birthday today (wish him a happy one), I gave him the opportunity to pick what ever comic related item he wanted to cover for the podcast. He kept the Dystopian Futures theme going by picking Akira – the anime movie to review.
For those that are not familiar with Akira, here is a little background on the material. It is based on a 1982 Manga series by Katsuhiro Otomo. As it was published in Japan, Marvel picked up the rights to distribute it in America under their Epic imprint. In 1988, Katsuhiro Otomo directed the anime version of the movie. At the time, it cost $5 million dollars to make and was the most expensive animated movie to date. Akira is an epic tale about teen angst, political corruption, family and friendship that ends in a giant psychic battle.
This may be one of the most influential movies of all time. You can see elements of the movie being emulated in other animated shows. Here is a quick clip of Kaneda sliding on his bike how many other shows pay homage to it.
There was talk of an American live action version of Akira in early 2000s but this never happened. Here is what it would have looked like…
Akira is a great movie (and even greater manga) but it does get a little convoluted in the end. I have seen the movie multiple times but still cannot figure out the ending. Jon and I still highly recommend watching it because it still holds up.
Welcome back to Comics Misremembered. This week we are going to talk about a story that people will argue that is Marvel’s greatest story ever. There are others that hold this story in reverence. We may make these people angry with our podcast.
Tonight, we are talking about Frank Miller and David Mazzucchelli’s seminal Daredevil story – Born Again. Originally published as Daredevil #227 – 231 in 1986 by Marvel.
I explain in the podcast how I came to buy the trade paper back for Born Again and why we are recording a podcast for it now. In reflection, it seems the perfect time to do a story review for this book.
For those that have never read or even heard of this story, let me give you some of the history. Frank Miller wrote and drew some of the defining moments of Daredevil in the 70s and 80s. He would leave Marvel and work on several Batman stories over at DC.
In 1986, Frank was invited back to write a new storyline for Daredevil to help boost it’s sales. Jim Shooter, editor-in-chief at the time, asked Frank if he would like to take a crack at the Scarlett Swashbuckler again. Frank said he would and so history is made.
Jon and I have never read this story until today. We both are not big Daredevil fans but we are familiar with the character of Matt Murdock and his family of characters. This story is wildly hyped, but does it live up to it? We tell you in the podcast. We also cover the religious symbolism that Miller and Mazzucchelli put into the story.
It’s a great story but one of the greatest? You be the judge. Oh, by the way – SPOILERS WILL BE IN THE PODCAST.
Welcome to Comics Misremembered New Comic Review. Jon and I find 4 titles that have come out in the past few weeks and we make recommendations. Usually these comics are independent titles that you may have missed. All of our recommendations are worth your time and we highly recommend reading them. Let’s get to talking comics this week…
The reviews are like this: Jon starts then I do the next and so on until we review 4 books. Got it! Great. Here is the order…
Wolverine #1 – Jon’s review
Writer: Benjamin Percy
Artists: Adam Kurbert and Viktor Bogdonavic
BANG! #1 – Jim’s review
Writer: Matt Kindt
Artist: Wilfredo Torres
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Mirka Andolfo’s Mercy #1 – Jon review
Writer: Mirka Andolfo
Aritst: Mirka Andolfo
Publisher: Image Comic
Tomorrow #1 – Jim review
Writer: Peter Milligan
Artist: Jesus Hervas
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics (Berger Books imprint)
There you have it. 4 great books with glowing reviews. Go pick them up as soon as possible because issue #2 for most of them will be out in a week or 2.
Welcome to a very special edition of Comics Misremembered Podcast. We are celebrating our 250th podcast!! About a week ago I had no idea what we were going to do to honor this milestone.
We started kicking around ideas: Maybe do a countdown of our favorite storylines. We ditched this idea because we figured it would be too similar to past podcasts. Then changed it up to: review a great and celebrated storyline that is often over looked.
This brings us to the topic of this week’s CM Podcast. We will be reviewing the trade paperback of Iron Man: Demon in a Bottle. This is a collection Iron Man Vol.1 #120 – 128. The original story was published by Marvel in 1979.
The creators of this storyline are: Writer/Co-Plotter – David Michelinie, Artist – John Romita, Jr and Inker/Co-Plotter Bob Layton.
The title Demon in a Bottle comes from Iron Man #128 which is the final part of the overall story arc. It also has one of the most recognizable covers of all time created by Bob Layton.
Jon and I have never read this story in it’s original run. We had a great time going over it and we both think it is as relevant today as it was in 1979. I think the reason it is often overlooked on people’s Top Ten lists is because this is only the beginning of Tony Stark’s descent into alcoholism. In this story arc: Bethany Cabe points out that he has a drinking problem, helps him identify the problem and overcome it. Tony seems to have conquered his demons. Or has he?
If you continue reading after #128, Tony’s struggle become worse and he will eventually lose everything to drinking. It will be several years before he turns it all around to become sober and a success again.
It’s a terrific story that shows that no man is an island. You sometimes have more problems than you can handle and it is always a good idea to have your friends and family help you out when times are tough.
We compare Tony Stark of the 70s to how he behaves in the 2020s, we cover the infamous Javis resignation letter and discuss how they tired to use elements of this story in the Iron Man 2 movie to varying degrees of success.
We have reached the end of 2019. It has been another great year for comics. There were plenty of great comic books, comic related shows and movies that we covered here at Comics Misremembered.
Traditionally at the end of the year, most comic podcasts would do a review show of the best of the best comic related books, shows and movies but that’s not what we do here at the Comics Misremembered Podcast.
We like to cover comic related stories that happened through out the year that we thought were funny to us. The topics we cover are either a storyline, a story about a creator or comic company or any comic related tale that we want you to remember again. We called the award show The Hazies – because our memory is a little hazy.
I even went out and bought an actual award. I am not mailing it out to the winners (Sorry). I have been meaning to get one so here it is…
Listen to the podcast to find out who or what won this Hazie for these categories…
Dick Move Hazie
Killing Me Softly With His Love Hazie
Fear of a Female Planet Hazie
I Take My Coffee Black Like My Worldview Hazie
He Put The ‘No’ in Nostalgia Hazie
All these and many, many more were given out so tune in and have a laugh with us.
PS – Thanks to Emperor Palpatine to take some time out of his busy schedule promoting Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker to help us with our Hazie Award intro.