It’s almost Girl Scout Cookie time! Starting March 13th and ending May 3rd. I’ve always found it weird/creepy that you had to “seek out” your local girl scout to buy cookies from. So I never did it. And they have those “locator” apps now as well. But I came across this handy little chart from Gothamist that will help us New Yorkers get our fix. Feel free to go ahead and buy me some while you’re there. That way I can stock up.
Reviews: Conan The Barbarian Vol 3 #1, Mondo #1, No Place Like Home #1
Jimmy is joined in studio by Marvel’s The Watcher host (and good pal) Lorraine Cink! They discuss her show, the Oscars, UK’s Being Human, JK Rowling’s new book, and Justice League: Doom. News includes: Lots from Image Expo like Brian Wood/Ming Doyle’s Mara, Phonogramreturns, The Walking Dead gets their Governor, Moriarity the musical, Happy!, Bedlam, and Jonathan Hickman’s The Manhattan Projects and Secret. Other news: Morgan Spurlock’s Comic-Con Documentary is finally coming, Valiant debuts a talking comic book cover, Alan Ball is leaving True Blood, and a rare comic book collection sells for $3.5 million. Massive apologies for the LOUD pipe banging at the end of the episode. NYC buildings just love doing that at times. As always, listener feedback, the Top 3 and more! Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love!
I mentioned earlier on Twitter how I got a PR email where the sender literally typed that they were “considering” Comic News Insider (CNI, my podcast) for coverage of their work. As if I had to pass some test to be worthy of covering their product. Haha. It was obviously a mass PR email where you interchange the person or company’s name. And that’s fine. I just found the “considering” part kinda funny as I have a snarky sense of humor. Plus, they clearly didn’t know that CNI is a podcast as they wrote using the word “readers” and not “listeners”. Again, that’s fine. I get these emails all of the time.
So, I wrote back and saying I realize it was a mass PR email but wanted to let them know that we are a podcast, declined coverage due to busy schedule and joked about the “considering” part of their initial email. I guess my humor didn’t come across as they seemed to take umbrage with their reply to that one. (Probably that I declined coverage as well). Starting it with a condescending “Buddy, I don’t get why…” and going on to say it wasn’t a mass PR email. Continuing with an explanation to me that it was normal to send a request like this via email. So, in other words, it’s normal to send a FORMATTED email to a bunch of people in hopes of coverage? So, how is that not a mass PR email? I know we weren’t the only people they emailed.
I did feel a little bad that I was misinterpreted. So, I wrote back offering a mea culpa and meant no offense and good luck. And gave a little background to the podcast as they clearly did NO research on us. If they did, they’d see the impressive guest list, how long we’ve been around, etc. I’m sure they’re a nice person (I hope) and I meant no disrespect.
Hey, I’m all for supporting anything new and if there’s room in the weekly show to cover it (granted I like it), then I will. I’ve found some amazing comics, web comics, indie creators, etc. through similar type emails. And while I wont change anyone’s life (well, maybe!), if I mention it on the show then some people will check it out for sure.
I know people don’t have time to check out every outlet they are emailing during a promotion, but it does help if you know a little about them. And then maybe WE’LL “consider” YOU for coverage. (See? Snarky!)
I’ve heard about this manga, The Drops of God by Tadashi Agi/Shu Okimoto, for a good year or two now. As you know, I’m a huge comic book nerd. My manga reading isn’t as high but I do try to pick some up here and there. This finally became available in English last September but it had fallen off of my radar. Suddenly, it was back! My good pal Mike gave it to me for a belated Christmas present last week and I devoured the first volume in days. I immediately bought the second volume and am halfway through. Volumes 3-5 are available later in the year and you can bet your hot patootie that I’ll be snatching them up.
Oh, what’s it about, you ask? WINE! Yes, wine. If you don’t know, I’ve worked in the bar industry in NYC for years and have been a bartender/bar manager. I know my wines pretty well though never went for my sommelier certification. I enjoy drinking all kinds of wine and learning about it as well. I’m a bit of a liquor/wine/beer nerd too!
This manga accurately educates and entertains you about wine without doing it in a snobby manner. Sure, it’s a manga so there is a bit of hyperbolizing here and there. ALL of the wines presented in it are real ones. (I’ve even tasted a few of them in real life). Sure, some are way out of our price range but it’s fun to read about them. And they talk about plenty of more affordable ones as well. Oh, there’s a story too. Boy howdy, is there a story! Basic wiki plot:
"Kanzaki Shizuku is a junior employee in a Japanese beverages company mainly focusing on selling beers. As the story opens, he receives news that his father, from whom he is estranged, has died. His father was the world renowned wine critic Kanzaki Yutaka, who owned a vast and famous wine collection. Summoned to the family home, a splendid European style mansion, to hear the reading of his father’s will, Shizuku learns that, in order to take ownership of his legacy, he must correctly identify, and describe in the manner of his late father, thirteen wines, the first twelve known as the "Twelve Apostles" and the thirteenth known as the "Drops of God", that his father has described in his will. He also learns that he has a competitor in this, a renowned young wine critic called Toomine Issei, who his father has apparently recently adopted as his other son.
Shizuku has never drunk wine, in part a reaction against the ruling passion of his late father, nor had any previous knowledge about wines. However, with strong senses of taste and smell, and an uncanny ability to describe his experiences from those senses, Shizuku submerges himself in the world of wine and tries to solve the mysteries of the 13 wines and defeat Issei. In this, he is also helped by knowledge gained from his time as a child with his father, and supported by his friends (including trainee sommelier Shinohara Miyabi) and colleagues in the newly formed wine department of his company, which he now joins.”
Reading up on it, it’s been going since 2004 and apparently is STILL running. Which worries me as I fear it will never finish and I’ll be reading it forever. Awaiting to find out the mystery of the 13 wines! And it’s influence on the wine industry in Japan and South Korea is quite significant. Sales in wines mentioned have increased dramatically. There was also a live action TV series a few years back that influenced sales as well. (I just ordered it and can’t wait to see it). Not to mention, it is highly regarded by the wine industry. Decanter magazine says it is “arguably the most influential wine publication for the past 20 years”.
As a bartender, I enjoy doing wine tastings and educating people on what they are drinking. That is, if they are open to new experiences. From now on, maybe I’ll just carry a copy of volume one (clocking in at 400+ pages!) with me at all times to teach.
What are you waiting for? Go grab a copy and read it while drinking a nice glass of Bordeaux. Cheers!
I know we all have friends like this. The ones that pretend they know everything or are familiar with everything. And then when you call them out on the bullshit they act like they don’t know what you’re talking about. Por ejemplo:
I was chatting with a friend. Well, we’re not that close and don’t really hang out. More acquaintances. Let’s call them Bo. Let’s say we were chatting about…candy. (We weren’t talking about candy). I tell Bo this new candy bar is coming out and how strange that it is so similar to this particular ice cream that came out a year or 2 ago. And I wonder if the candy company knew about the ice cream company’s ice cream? Bo replies before I can even finish the sentence that they knew that. Sort of like this:
Me: That new candy looks good. You know, there was an ice cream that has a similar…
Bo: I KNOW!
I’m too nice sometimes so I just let it go. What I should have done was asked, “Oh yeah? What ice cream am I talking about and what company? Tell me about it!” AND, Bo doesn’t eat or like or know much about ice cream at all! (Again, not really talking about ice cream).
Another time, Bo claimed to know someone (let’s call them Joey) and that they were friends and that they had worked together. Joey is someone I wanted to meet so Bo gave me some little tidbits about Joey in case I did. Another friend of mine, ran into Joey and used those tidbits on him and gave Bo’s name. Joey didn’t recall Bo AT ALL but did agree on one of the tidbits. So, in reality, Bo did work with Joey but not together and they didn’t know one another at all. (It was a big company or something). The tidbit that Joey agreed upon had something to do with the company, not Joey.
I didn’t want to embarrass Bo (though I should, what with all the LIES), so later, I joked with them that the whole Joey thing was bullshit. Instead of doing a “mea culpa” or claiming they got something mixed up, Bo just completely ignored what I said and changed the subject. Like this:
Me: So, haha…remember that Joey thing? You were kinda bullshitting that one, huh? Haha.
Bo: (Silence). Yeah, anyway. Did you see that new movie?
For reals, yo. Completely changed the subject. Sigh.
I genuinely like Bo but have no desire to invest time in a friendship. What with all the LIES! Seriously, every time we see one another, something similar happens. So annoying.
In conclusion: To all the “Bo’s” in the world. STOP IT. It’s okay if you don’t know something. Or in Bo’s case, you don’t know much. I understand you’re making up for insecurities, screaming for attention, desperate for approval, blah, blah, blah. No excuses. People will like you better if you STOP IT. So, please.
This public service has been brought to you by all of the people you ever encounter in your life. You’re welcome.
"Just watched Greys anatomy and it brought me right back to the day I was in labor with Chloe. Bob and I had to sign a paper stating that we knew Chloe had only a 5% chance of survival and that we were giving PERMISSION for the hospital to take extreme measures to save her….something they must do for 23 & 24 week deliveries because after 25 weeks they will automatically try to save the baby but at 23 weeks parents actually have the choice of medical intervention due to unthinkable odds. It’s the easiest decision I’ve ever made, and the most important document we’ve ever signed ;)"
And here’s my little miracle niece Chloe a couple of months ago. The most beautiful thing in the whole world!
Reviews: Glory #23, Peter Panzerfaust #1, Stephen King & Joe Hill’s Road Rage #1
Jimmy is joined in studio by fellow podcaster Charly LaGreca (Indie Spinner Rack). They chat about Order of the Stick's Kickstarter, Katie Beaton answering your questions about the comics industry, and Charlie's adventures running the new Denver Comic Con. News includes: Jason's I Killed Hitler optioned for film, Jhonen Vasquez and Becky Cloonan on Fringe digital comic, Young Justice: Legacy and The Walking Dead video games coming, Angry Birds in space, andCommunity's Inspector Spacetime coming to the web! As always, listener feedback, the Top 3 and more! Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love!
It was bound to happen sooner or later with all of the Jeremy Lin hype. As you know, I’m half-Asian and am proud of my Asian brother making big things happen for my beloved Knicks. I know all of the “Lin” puns in the paper and online were becoming a bit too much but it didn’t bother me. And I was just waiting…just WAITING for someone to make that racist joke. And ESPN came through with flying colors! (See above). They since retracted the headline.
To be honest, I thought it was funny but just not appropriate for ESPN. Not really all that clever, but funny. Bill Maher did a few last night on Real Time that would be considered borderline racist but were very funny. (Especially the “Peking Dunk” one). And that’s the difference. ESPN, while always known for it’s humor on SportsCenter, isn’t the platform for a joke like that. Real Time gets a pass because it’s essentially a comedy show and was making fun of the headlines themselves and not the person. I’d like to think the person who wrote the headline at ESPN didn’t mean it in a racist manner. Most likely not. Still, just not the place to do it.
Here are some of the other ideas the writer may have had for headlines since Lin came to prominence:
Lin Love You Long Time
Lin Duck Dong Dunk Wrong
Lin No Longer Lo Mein on the Totem Pole
This General Tso Ain’t No Chicken
Lin: All Sweet, No Sour
Kung Fu Lin-da Kicks Knicks Up a Notch
Lin: Mathematician, Launderer, Bad Driver, Baller
Lin Dynasty Reigns in NYC
Rockets Steam Dumped Lin But Knicks Love His Spring Role
Jimmy went to the Paley Center here in NYC and attended the red carpet premiere of Justice League: Doom, the new animated feature from Warner Bros./DC. He got to chat with voice director Andrea Romano and Phil Morris (“Vandal Savage”). Alas, he missed out on chatting with Batman himself, Kevin Conroy. But, there is a great Q&A after the screening for your listening pleasure with Andrea, Phil, and Kevin! Go buy the DVD on February 28th when it comes out! Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love!
Reviews: Adventure Time #1, Kevin Keller #1, Murky World One Shot, Thief of Thieves #1, Justice League: Doom animated feature
Jimmy is joined in studio by some of the Vampire Cowboys Theater crew, Jon Hoche and Qui Nguyen! They have remounted their show The Inexplicable Redemption of Agent G on the ol’ Off Broadway stage so go see it if you’re in NYC! They chat about Comic Book Men, The Walking Dead mid-season return, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter trailer, and Geek Syndicate’s new podcast Geek to Geek. Jimmy attended the red carpet premiere of the new Warner Brothers/DC animated feature Justice League: Doom at the Paley Center here in NYC. He got to chat with voice director Andrea Romano and Phil Morris and you get to hear a tease of those interviews here. A special One-Shot episode with full interviews and the post-screening Q&A will be released on Friday! News includes: Smallville Season 11 in comics, DC Nation programming block on Cartoon Network, Marvel’s The Watcher gets new host Lorraine Cink, New Mutants and Asgardians get exiled, Star Trek: TNG and Doctor Who crossover at IDW, and Course of the Force comes to Comic-Con. As always, listener feedback, the Top 3 and more! Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love!
Batman is serious about his love. Sounds a bit creepy/stalkery to me. Run!
Superman is trying to take a little girl away? Kinda pedo, Supes! Amber alert!
Spider-Man starts off with a happy one. Then gets stalkery with the 2nd. And then outright tells you he has a split personality. Swing away from this one!
Let’s see. The droids are sarcastically saying you’re just okay. Ahsoka is claiming you are a friend but is in an attack stance with her light saber. Yoda is demanding. Anakin is too as he force chokes you in the 2nd picture. Obi-Wan is like Ahsoka with the attack stance. And the clone trooper has a locked and loaded army behind him while pointing at you as if you’re a target. Try to find Jar Jar. He seems the safest. Though I wonder what Padme is up to?
Again with the forceful wishes! Captain America must be teaming up with Batman as the are coming for you! Watch out for that shield. Methinks Steve Rogers isn’t as boyscout as we thought.
Lately there’s been a three-pronged attack of Fairy Tales hitting me all at once - Grimm and Once Upon A Time on TV, and me cleaning out my comic store box and finding a pile of Fables comics to catch up on. I’ve always been a fan of variations on these fine tales from the Disney to the…
Great breakdown, Mons! I’m really digging Once Upon A Time but am behind on Grimm. Not sure I’ll stick w/ the latter. Waaaaaaaay behind on Fables. :(
And for my peoples: Check out my pal Monica’s fairy tale overload thoughts here. Some spoilers if you haven’t been watching/reading.
You’ve seen/heard a lot about AMC’s new reality show COMIC BOOK MEN that debuts this Sunday, February 12th at 10pm EST. Especially a lot from me. Naturally, with my podcast COMIC NEWS INSIDER, I’m very interested. And as a huge Kevin Smith fan, I’m extremely interested. As I previously mentioned in an episode or 12, I’ve always wanted to interview Kevin. He’s been my white whale. Figuratively, of course. Have had some possible close calls over the years at various comic conventions but it never happened.
So on Tuesday, when I attended the press luncheon for Comic Book Men at Caroline’s comedy club here in NYC, I was excited. Not only would I possibly get to finally meet him, but I may get a one on one opportunity. I have visited his comic book store (Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash) in Red Bank, NJ for years. I happened to be out there a few months back and stumbled upon them shooting for the show. I met store manager Walt Flanagan and the rest of the CBM cast (Bryan Johnson, Ming Chen, Mike Zapcic). We chatted about me coming out there and doing an interview with some of them. Alas, holidays happened and it got busy. Walt and I were in touch over the months and decided it would be best to try to do an interview at the luncheon. Which we were able to do. I sat with Walt for about 15 minutes to chat about the show, the store and his art. I also got to talk to Bryan Johnson as well, who is the clear break out comedy star of the show. Just so damn funny. Midway through my roughly 6 minute interview with Bryan, Kevin walks in and comes over. We meet as he praises Bryan and his other friends. Color me excited!
(Walt Flanagan and Bryan Johnson)
The press conference starts and we go to the main room. Kevin comes out with Exec. Producer Charlie Corwin and then give us a background of the show before Kevin brings the cast out. Kevin, being the natural speaker/storyteller (and a great one at that), holds court as mics are passed around to ask questions. Unfortunately, I couldn’t stay for the whole thing but got the first 40 minutes of it. Some great stuff is covered. The origin of the show, the reality behind it, how they got into comics, the slightly controversial lack of women in the show* (see end of article for special editorial type thingy), how nerdy is it, special guests (hint: SNOOGANS) and so much more. Really interesting stuff.
Oh, just so you know, most of us had been sent a screener of the first episode and from what I gathered, it seems most enjoyed it as much as I did. It’s really fun! The tagline is “Pawn Stars in a comic book store”. (Spoiler alert for those who are awaiting to watch it on Sunday). Seriously, stop reading this paragraph and skip ahead. People come in to sell comics, toys, collectibles and more and then haggle with Walt and others for the worth. Framed around it all are scenes of Kevin and the cast podcasting about it all. Plus, there is even a mission of sorts. Walt sends out Bryan, Mike and Ming to a local flea market to get rid of overstock. Whomever makes the most money wins. It has some serious laugh out loud moments and Bryan comes out as the breakout comedy star. Sure, you have your mix of crazies as sellers but you need that as those will be the ones you talk about the next day. “Did you see that weird guy with the…”. Stuff like that. While the episode we watched was supposedly not finished, it seemed pretty tightly edited. Overall, I found it very entertaining! The guys, unintentionally I bet, come across very charming.
After running out at the 40 minute mark, I returned about an hour or so later in hopes of garnering a one-on-one with Kevin himself. The lovely publicist Kayla had been trying to help me work it out all week. When I got back, she said Kevin was in the main room with about 3 other reporters doing a round table and that I should just jump in. So I did. Kevin chatted with us for about 20 minutes or so and I got a couple of questions in at the end.
As we were walking out, I asked Kevin how long he was in town for as I really wanted to get an interview. He then invited me out to Red Bank to watch them shoot some of the show. As previously mentioned, they frame the show with Kevin and the cast podcasting. They built this rad set out in Red Bank and were going to be shooting all day. Naturally, I agreed to come out the next day! Super excited to see the magic behind the show and to get that interview.
I arrived around 12pm in Red Bank after a quick and easy 1hr 20min train ride from NYC. After finding my way to the set, I watched them shoot for awhile. It was pretty cool just listening to them shoot the shit about comics, toys, sci-fi and some of the customers. On a quick break, Kevin came over to say hi and we chatted for a few. They had been there since early morning and were breaking for lunch pretty soon. Got to chat with Bryan for a few again as well. Back to shooting and then lunch break after a bit. We walked over to the View Askew offices and chatted for a bit. Kevin had to run off to a meeting of sorts so Ming took me out to lunch. We talked about our respective podcasts and the possibility of doing crossovers. Something I chatted with both Walt and Bryan about as well. Ming is the “whipping boy” of the show and I suggested he remind the others that he runs the various websites and could easily draw cocks on their faces or write nasty things about them. He laughed but said he’s happy to play that role. I was just looking out for my fellow Asian brother!
After lunch, we returned to the offices to chill a bit. Meghan (Kevin’s awesome assistant who helped set this all up) texted met that they were back in the studio shooting. I was confused as I thought I was going to be interviewing Kevin during lunch. Alas, schedules just didn’t permit. I went back to watch a bit more but then had to get back to NYC as I had tickets to a play. They wanted me to stay out longer and hang and we’d do the interview later, but by then it had been over 4 hours (totally enjoyed all of it though!). Had I not had those tickets, I would have happily hung out! Sure, I was disappointed that I didn’t get the one on one (boy, did I have some good questions) but totally understand. I’m a former actor and know how these shoots go. Long, exhausting days on someone else’s schedule that you have no control over. I appreciate just getting the opportunity to hang and observe. Meghan assured me that we’d set something up with Kevin in the near future. Plus, I definitely plan on heading out to Red Bank again some time to podcast with the boys.
Many thanks to Kayla at Ferencomm and Meghan for helping to set everything up. Of course, mad props to Kevin. Just seems like a genuinely nice person who means the best at all times. I get he’s not for everyone, but I think his heart is always in the right place. And great meeting the Men of the show as well. Looking forward to chatting/podcasting with them in the future.
*I want to briefly address the “lack of women in the show” bit that was asked about. If you listen to episode 384 of the podcast, you can hear the question being asked and how Kevin answered it. Afterwards, I read an article in the New York Observer, I believe. I think it was from the same person who asked the question. And gotta say, the article was skewed towards the “Kevin was jerky about it and really didn’t want women in the show” when that was NOT the case at all. Go listen and you’ll hear how much he would have liked it and would love to in the future. I’ve been doing this podcast for 6 years and while not a journalist, I don’t report skewed versions of press conferences/interviews. Shame on that article for misrepresenting Smith’s views. You can say, “Oh, you’re just a fanboy sticking up for him”. Go listen and be the judge.
Jimmy attended the press luncheon for AMC’s new reality show COMIC BOOK MEN which debuts this Sunday, February 12th at 10pm EST on AMCTV. He got the first 40 minutes of the press conference for your listening pleasure! Apologies for not the best of sound so turn that volume up! Creator of the series, Kevin Smith himself, led the discussion with questions from the press. Jimmy got a couple of good ones in himself! They even broached the subject that caused a bit of a kerfluffle in the comics community regarding the lack of women in the show. Kevin Smith invited Jimmy out to the set of the show the next day and Jimmy gives you his report. Make sure you listen to last episode 383 with interviews with Kevin Smith, Walt Flanagan and Bryan Johnson. Thanks to all involved especially Kayla at Ferencomm and Kevin’s assistant Meghan. Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love!