Monday, February 07, 2005

Random Notes: Comics & Cartoons

Still have not recovered fully - my entire system is out of temporal whack, with 12-hour sleeps filled with viscous, liquid dreams alternating with massive insomnia and long dark nights of the soul. So if this is less . . . coherent . . . than normal, forgive, but at the moment it all seems to orbit around lines on paper, in the form of cartoons and comics. Oh, and some old-guy ranting.

I surfaced briefly from my sickbed this weekend for the Emerald City comic convention, which reminded a lot of the old Chicago Comic Con when it was downtown, before it moved to a hotel by O'Hare, which was before it was moved to a Rosemont Convention Center which was before it was swallowed by a larger organization and shed its last fragments of fannish charm. A lot of dealers, a lot of fans, and a smattering of big names (The biggest line was for the creator of "Invader Zim", a now-extinct show from Nickelodeon). I padded out some of my collections and made small talk with others of my ilk. Seattle comic fans seem to be younger, thinner, and more active than their midwestern counterparts, but that just may be my age showing. There were also a lot of goths, but they are were a lot "perkier" than when I was a struggling punter. Again, it may be my age, but the goths in MY day did not do cheerleading routines. Anyway, the con still had the small-town feel, with lots of comics, animation, and action figures.

I also emerged into the real world long enough to watch the Super Bowl with the Monkey King, and had what was probably the best Super Bowl halftime I've ever seen (The worst was a "Celebration of the Blues" which was used as vehicle to promote the upcoming Blues Brothers 2000 Movie). Four full songs, a performer who could carry it, and what for the Super Bowl was a minimalist set. This was Pro Football's version of "Unplugged". Sir Paul is not my favorite Beatle, but he pulled it off. But the question is: When did "Live and Let Die" become pop's version of the "1812 Overture" for pyrokinetic goodness?

Sir Paul reminds me of the Mad Mod (did I mention I might be a little disconnected this time out?), a really, really lame DC Villain from the 60's. The Mad Mod himself was sort of a prototype for Austin Powers, but in a evil way, and has now reappeared on the Teen Titans show on Cartoon Network. The Mod takes over the city, converting it into a big Carnaby-Street-Swinging-London-Calling sort of nightmare. The entire show is filled with paens to Monty Python and the Beatles. Which I found amusing, but I'm of that era. My only question is, when does the next generation get a culture of their own?

Speaking of cartoons and my age, I watched way too many edgy cartoons (on Comedy Central and Cartoon Network's Adult Swim) of the type where the characters all die messily in the final moments of the cartoons. After the third one in a row, I had to admit - I didn't get it. It reminded me of the 80's, where every domestic comedy sketch seemed to end with "Dad" pulling out a chainsaw from behind the couch. Maybe it's the cold. Maybe it's the insomnia. Maybe it's the age-thing. Maybe its a rejection of Post-Modernistic thought. Nah, it's the age-thing. I'm going to become a grumpy old pensioner before you know it.

OK, I had more, but I think I've dug myself in deeply enough. Enough for now.