Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Usagi Yojimbo #143

The rabbit ronin's wanderings lead Usagi Yojimbo to a village where a local soy sauce maker is under attack by his ruthless competitors.

Usagi stops the arson set to destroy the factory but soon realizes the town's local authorities have no interest in stopping the violence. Given that the brewer has no one else to turn to Usagi decides to stay in the town for a few days.

Sakai is known for using issues of Usagi to describe and educate young readers on various aspects of Japanese life. Here we get quite a few pages of Usagi learning the lengthy process of how soy sauce is made.

The issue may be a little light on action but there's plenty of foreshadowing to next issue's conclusion of this two-part tale that tells us there's a big battle or two coming if Usagi is to save the brewer from his enemies. Worth a look.

[Dark Horse, $3.50]

The Flash #5

The Mob Rule story arc ends, although it looks like the character is going to stick around the New 52, as the Flash is able to stop Darwin Ellis' out of control experiment, to solve Mob Rule's degeneration problem, from exploding and taking an entire Central City block with it.

Although the Flash is able to save the day none of Mob Rule survive leaving Manuel to blame the hero for their deaths. I was hoping the arc would end the character's involvement in the series but it appears he's going to be sticking around, and with an ax to grind.

The issue also sees the Flash save Iris West from the prison break at Iron Heights and learn Ellias' terrifying theory about the Speed Force which could mean the end of the Flash for good.

Once again Francis Manapul delivers another terrific looking comic. I'm glad to see the end of the Mob Rule story arc and the chance to see the Flash deal with a problem with the Speed Force and the return of his Rogues Gallery in the next couple of issues. Worth a look.

[DC, $2.99]


Based on James Sallis' 2005 novel, adapted for the screen by Hossein Amini, Drive stars Ryan Gosling as a getaway driver with no name who finds himself in a sticky situation when he breaks his own rules. If this sounds a little like The Transporter franchise, well it is, but director Nicolas Winding Refn decides to treat a rather ordinary action tale as an art house film drawing comparisons to dramatic action films of the late 60's and 70's like Steve McQueen's Bullit.

The Driver has everything he needs. His evident skill gets him consistant stunt car work and the far more lucrative (though far less legal) jobs no one else can do. His business partner (Bryan Cranston) has just closed a deal with a mobster (Albert Brooks) to buy a stock car which will allow the Driver to finally hit the big time. But when the Driver allows himself to be sucked into the troubles of an attractive neighbor (Carey Mulligan) and her young son (Kaden Leos) by agreeing to help her husband (Oscar Isaac) pull off a big score things go horribly wrong.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Chuck Versus the Goodbye

If the second-to-last episode of Chuck spent a little too much time setting up all the pieces in anticipation of one final hour, the show's finale delivers a jam-packed episode full of callbacks from the show's earlier years, one last performance of Jeffster, the return of the Intersect to where it rightfully belongs, and a tearful farewell to the show's fans who have fought to keep Chuck on the air every single season for five years.

Chuck Versus Sarah

Nicholas Quinn (Angus Macfadyen) has used the Intersect to remove Sarah's (Yvonne Strahovski) memories of Chuck (Zachary Levi) and the last five years. He's rebooted her back to the spy she was at the beginning of the series and set her sites on the man he tells her is responsible - Charles Bartowski.

Comic Rack

It’s a new week so it must be time to talk about comics! Welcome to the RazorFine Comic Rack boys and girls. Pull up a bean bag and take a seat at feet of the master as we offer you this quick list of all kinds of comic book goodness set to hit comic shops and bookstores this week from all your favorite publishers including DC, Marvel, Dark Horse, Archie, Dynamite, Image Comics, and others.

This week includes Action Comics, Amazing Spider-Man, Animal Man, Batwing, Betrayal of the Planet of the Apes, Defenders, Detective Comics, Doctor Who, Fatale, G.I. JOE, Hellraiser, Hulk, Invincible, Irredeemable, Justice League International, The Lone Ranger, The Punisher, Reed Gunther, Savage Dragon, Sonic the Hedgehog, Stormwatch, Swamp Thing, Sweet Tooth, Uncanny X-Men, Venom, X-Factor, and the first issues of Alpha Girl, Infestation 2: Transformers, Magic: The Gathering, Warriors of Mars, and Winter Soldier.

Enjoy issue #164

Sunday, January 29, 2012

The Beta Test Initiation

As Sheldon (Jim Parsons) shares his love of flags and Raj (Kunal Nayyar) spends far too much time alone with his new phone, Leonard (Johnny Galecki) and Penny (Kaley Cuoco) attempt to work the kinks out of the relationship now that the pair are dating again.

Sunday with Keira

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Red Hood and the Outlaws #5

The latest issue of Red Hood and the Outlaws gives us not one but two battle scenes as the Red Hood battles the Untitled and Arsenal and Starfire take down the crocodile-Man-Bat-thing known as Crux. It's not a great story, and (as has been the case for this comic) some of the writing may illicit unplanned groans or giggles from the reader, but (unlike a vast majority of the New 52) it is fun.

This issue puts Jason Todd on a path. It's a murderous path to be sure, but at least we now know where writer Scott Lobdell is planning to take the Red Hood and the rest of the team. I'm confused by the blood blades and the reasoning why Starfire didn't loose her powers, but let's be honest - logic has never been this comic's strong suit.

Even though I've stopped reading many of the New 52 titles I'm going to stay with Red Hood and the Outlaws for at least awhile longer. It's never quite what I expect, and its not the direction I would take the characters, but I'm still intrigued by what Lobdell has planned for this motley crew he's assembled. Worth a look.

[DC, $2.99]

Every Doctor Who Story 1963 to Now

Very cool collection capturing every Doctor Who episode from 'An Unearthly Child' in 1963 to 'The Doctor, The Widow and the Wardrobe' Christmas Special (except for the missing episodes, of course).

Friday, January 27, 2012

A Dangerous Method

A slow moving drama centered around the science of psychology may initially seem an odd choice for director David Cronenberg's latest project, but A Dangerous Method proves to be an engaging study of the minds and hearts of three individuals, each of whom finds themselves at the mercy of their uncontrollable passions and foibles.

Based on the play by Christopher Hampton and the book by John Kerr, Cronenberg and screenwriter Christopher Hampton deliver a character study centered around three people central to the birth of psychoanalysis. Michael Fassbender stars as Carl Jung, a doctor who in the early 20th Century would expand on the ideas of Sigmund Freud (Viggo Mortensen) to create analytical psychology.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Morning Glories #15

In the latest issue of Morning Glories Zoe takes center stage and makes a solid case why she might be the most screwed-up member of the freshman class (which, at this school, is saying something!) as the Wood Run storyline continues.

Zoe and Hunter work together to capture their flag, stopping to make camp and to give Zoe a chance for a not-so-comforting lecture the impossibility of a Hunter and Casey relationship. Along the way Hunter meets a new friend who not only has high nerd cred but a pretty obvious crush on Hunter as well. It's too bad, given the shocking final panels, things between them will never work out.

Once again writer Nick Spencer and artist Joe Eisma give us another weird, but highly entertaining tale, and a terrific value. At an age when content seems to be shrinking as more and more monthly comics seem hellbent on a $4 price-tag, here's 30 pages of (very good) story for $3. That's pretty awesome, if you ask me. Worth a look.

[Image, $2.99]

Cobra #9

The "Cobra Command" crossover continues here as Snake Eyes, and his team (HelixIceberg, and Alpine) are successful in taking out one of COBRA's bases in the Southeast Nation of Nazhao, but COBRA has firm control of the entire country and delivers an ultimatum to the entire population of the country to evacuate. At first the JOE's believe COBRA plans to stay but the more intelligence they gather the more it looks like the new Cobra Commander's plan for Nazhao is complete destruction.

Honestly if this hadn't been a continuation of a story from last week's Snake Eyes (the only G.I. JOE comic I'm picking up on a regular basis), I probably wouldn't have picked this one up.

It doesn't appear that I'm going to have to keep up with all three titles to follow "Cobra Command," but this issue does give a little more on the inner-workings of COBRA's hierarchy (Desrto, Baroness, Major Bludd) as each are learning how to deal with the new Commander.

Michelle Williams Tells GQ Some Like Her Hot

In promoting her Oscar nominated role as Marilyn Monroe in My Weekend with Marilyn (one of my favorite films of 2011) Michelle Williams talked with GQ about her early acting career, growing up in Montana, working with Sam Raimi on Oz the Great and Powerful.

She also discussed being emancipated at 15 years-old, sexuality, Brokeback Mountain, Dostoevsky, her role as Marilyn Monroe, her daughter Matilda, Heath Ledger, living a sinful artistic career, Dawson's Creek, returning to film with Blue Valentine, her parents seeing her on stage for the first time in New York, and the idea of being "rich in loss."

She also took the time to do a cover spread for the magazine. You can find the pics after the jump.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

White Collar - Upper West Side Story

As Peter (Tim DeKay) struggles over his testimony of Neal's (Matt Bomer) recent actions the team gets a new case brought to them by an unlikely source - a high school student (Graham Phillips) at an elite private high school who believes money set aside for scholarship students is being stolen by the men (Dylan BakerJohn Rothman) in charge of the account.

Moon Knight #9

The latest issue of Moon Knight gives us a rematch between Count Nefaria and out hero as Moon Knight tries his best to survive against a super-villain far outside his weight class. Inter-cut throughout the battle are sequences between Moon Knight and Buck showcasing Moon Knight asking for the various weapons he'll use to try and survive the fight with Nefaria.

Once again Brian Michael Bendis gives us an issue full of great moments, including Buck's realization why his boss is asking him for the weapons of Captain America, Spider-Man, and Wolverine. In true crazy hero fashion our hero starts hearing that personality as he uses the shield, web-shooters, or claws which means his tactics against the villain vary wildly from pulling him in front of a car to trying to cut his head off.

Aside for one panel with Echo where things get real very quickly (and which better be a tease!), I thoroughly enjoyed myself from cover to cover. Worth a look.

[Marvel, $3.99]

Young Justice #12

The follow up to last issue's Batman and Robin adventure finds the Dynamic Duo battling Clayface. Although the villain is Matthew Hagen, he gets a new origin here as a member of the Legion of Assassins, and the former lover of Talia, who was locked in the Lazarus Pit when she discovered he was using his relationship with her for his own chance at immortality.

Although the rest of the Young Justice team makes an appearance here, as do Batman and Robin, most of the issue sets up Talia's failed relationships with both Batman and Hagen and teaches readers a very valuable lesson - never trifle with the feelings of Ra's al Ghul's daughter.

Next issue should see less flashbacks and more of the team battling this new version of Clayface but I've got to say I've enjoyed the past two issues focusing on Batman and Robin and now Talia. Worth a look.

[DC, $2.99]

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Castle - An Embarrassment of Bitches

When the judge (Ed Francis Martin) at a dog show is murdered shortly after giving out the prize for Best in Show Beckett (Stana Katic) and Castle (Nathan Fillion) are called into investigate. There are no shortage of suspects as they uncover angry dog owners, dog breeders, drug trafficking, a rabid member of paparazzi (Scott Lowell) with a doggie cam, and a reality-television star (Hilarie Burton) who was seen leaving he victim's dressing room right around the time of death.

Happy Happy

After his wife (Maibritt Saerens) has an affair with a another man, Sigve (Henrik Rafaelsen), moves his family and their adopted Ethiopian son Noa (Ram Shihab Ebedy) into the Norwegian countryside. The couple's only neighbors are the perky Kaja (Agnes Kittelsen) whose sunny disposition is matched only by her husband's (Joachim Rafaelsen) grumpy disinterest of everything to do with his wife.

Happy Happy, or Sykt lykkelig (it's original Norwegian title which translates more exactly into "insanely happy" - which can have both a positive and negative conotation) reveals its secrets through Kaja's intense loneliness and the brave smile under which she hides it.

Chuck - The Bromance from Heaven

After five years Chuck's run finally ends this Friday with a two-hour finale. As sad as it is to say goodbye, this does give us the opportunity to look back and remember. Check out this video featuring the series central bromance between Chuck Bartowski (Zachary Levi) and Morgan Grimes (Joshua Gomez).


When a 27 year-old journalist (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) wakes up to discover he has a rare form of cancer he's unprepared for how much his life will change in the coming months. He's afraid to tell his overprotective mother (Anjelica Huston), his girlfriend (Bryce Dallas Howard) tries but fails to handle the situation, and his best friend (Seth Rogen) thinks he should use his situation to try and pick up chicks.

Director Jonathan Levine and screenwriter Will Reiser deliver a story that balances humor and the drama of the situation well for most of the film's 100 min. running time. Sure the film goes for laughs, but its also surprisingly frank about the emotion of the situation (which is not surprising given the story was adapted from Reiser's own experiences).

Monday, January 23, 2012

Daredevil #8

The conclusion of "Devil and the Details" (which began last week in Amazing Spider-Man) finds Daredevil helping Spider-Man and the Black Cat discover who set her up for the theft of the hologram projector. Once again Mark Waid delivers a great story featuring some nice banter among all the three characters.

The comic includes the Black Cat throwing herself at Daredevil, Spider-Man's angsty hyperbole at seeing the two kiss on the rooftop, and another clever way to show off why you don't use a hologram projector to fight a blind super-hero.

Although I'm not sure how the missing corpse of Matt Murdock's father is going to play into the next story arc I did like how learning about it derailed Daredevil's make-out session with the Black Cat. The pair could make an okay couple swinging over rooftops but I'm having trouble seeing Matt Murdock and Felicia Hardy together anywhere outside of the (probably very steamy) bedroom. Best of the week.

[Marvel, $2.99]

Chuck Versus The Bullet Train

"Behold the flames of destiny."

Now armed with Intersect Sarah (Yvonne Strahovski) and Casey (Adam Baldwin) board a Japanese bullet train to save Chuck (Zachary Levi) from Nicholas Quinn (Angus Macfadyen). The mission goes to plan but when Alex (Mekenna Melvin) is kidnapped by Quinn's men (Steven Stone, Erin Cahill) Casey has no choice but to turn on his teammates. Things get even more complicated when Sarah's Intersect starts to malfunction.

Comic Rack

It’s a new week so it must be time to talk about comics! Welcome to the RazorFine Comic Rack boys and girls. Pull up a bean bag and take a seat at feet of the master as we offer you this quick list of all kinds of comic book goodness set to hit comic shops and bookstores this week from all your favorite publishers including DC, Marvel, Dark Horse, Archie, Dynamite, Image Comics, and others.

This week includes Alpha Flight, Angel & Faith, Aquaman, Blackhawks, Creepy, Fantastic Four, FF, The Flash, Futurama Comics, Infestation 2, Justice League, Kirby: Genesis, Knightingail, Kung Fu Panda, Queen Sonja, Superman, Teen Titans, Usagi Yojimbo, Vampirella, X-Men Legacy, Witchblade, the first issues of The Bulletproof Coffin: Disinterred, Infestation 2, The Last Zombie: Neverland, Nancy In Hell (On Earth), Transformers: Robots In Disguise, and the final issues of B.P.R.D. Hell On Earth Russia, Key of Z, and True Blood: French Quarter.

Enjoy issue #163

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Moves Like Batman

Check out this parody of Maroon 5's "Moves Like Jagger" brought to you by Chad and Angie of the Screen Team.

Nightwing #5

Even Nightwing comments on what an odd single issue adventure he finds himself in when Haley's Circus comes to New Orleans. What's so odd? I'm glad you asked. We get a lovesick clown, a voodoo priestess, the summoning of a sonnet-speaking demon, and a sacrificial rite performed (for love) in a New Orleans graveyard.

This certainly isn't the kind of Nightwing story I want every month, but it works well enough as an unexpected change of pace. It's also good to show how well Nightwing can think on his feet when presented with a situation he's not only unprepared for but has very little experience with.

The comic ends with a reveal I won't spoil here about the true motives of one of the comic's supporting characters. I'm not sure if its meant to be shocking, but it doesn't come off as well as I'm sure writer Kyle Higgins planned. There's simply no shock value turning a character so soon after they have been introduced. Worth a look.

[DC, $2.99]

Person of Interest - Legacy

When the machine spits out the number of a young defense attorney (April Hernandez-Castillo) Reese (Jim Caviezel) enlists the help of Detective Carter (Taraji P. Henson) to save the woman's life. Despite her initial reluctance, and being less than thrilled at some of Reese's methods, Carter agrees to help.

Lord of the Jungle #1

Dynamite Entertainment gives new "uncensored" life to Edgar Rice Burroughs' most well-known creation. Fans of Tarzan might want to pick up the first issue given its $1 cover price but I'm not sure there's enough for any but true die hard Tarzan fans to entice you to come back next month and pick up issue #2 for four times the price.

The first issue of Lord of the Jungle retells Tarzan's classic origin beginning with Tarzan's father and pregnant mother stranded on the Atlantic coast of Africa by mutineers. After building a home the Ewoks or the Swiss Family Robinson would be proud of, each of Tarzan's parents meets a tragic end shortly after his birth. The young baby is adopted by an ape who has recently lost her own son and takes young Tarzan as her own.

Other than the strange half-ape/half-human creatures whom the natives and the apes both fear there's nothing all that new here. And, sadly, we don't seen any of Tarzan in action as an adult. For fans.

[Dynamite Entertainment, $1.00]

Saturday, January 21, 2012

The Bark Side

Volkswagen's new Super Bowl commercial.

The Mentalist - My Bloody Valentine

While stranded in the woods and on the run with the only witness (Kristy Wu) to a murder Grace (Amanda Righetti) starts having hallucinations of O'Laughlin (Eric Winter). With neither the man power nor the knowledge of the terrain the CBI has no choice but to let local authorities hunt for their agent while they attempt to solve the murder.

Batman #5

Although I haven't been the biggest fan of Scott Snyder's "Court of Owls" storyline I do think this issue, which picks up eight days after the end of last month's issue, works well. Drugged and trapped in the labrynith of the Court of Owls, Batman struggles to keep his sanity while his friends and confidants wait for the missing Dark Knight Detective to reappear.

The structure of the book, the art starts to revolve from vertical, to horizontal, to upside down story-telling, works well with Snyder's tale of a Batman is slowly loosing his grip on reality but is still unwilling to give up or give in.

Although I don't think it's a great Batman story, it is well-told, with some strong artwork by Greg Capullo, and begins and ends with a couple of really nice moments such as the opening pages featuring Batman's friends wondering what has become of their hero and the comic's final panels which (finally) give us a glimpse that Damian may be more than the rebooted spoiled little shit we've seen so far. Worth a look.

[DC, $2.99]

The Recombination Hypothesis

Although the entire episode turns out to be nothing more than a dream sequence it appears the lesson learned isn't wasted. The question on Leonard's (Johnny Galecki) mind is whether or not he should resume his romantic relationship with Penny (Kaley Cuoco).

Friday, January 20, 2012


Brandon Sullivan (Michael Fassbender) is an intensely unhappy man. He spends his days in his searching for porn on his office computer and nights with a bevy of women (Elizabeth MasucciCalamity ChangDeeDee LuxeHannah WareCharisse Merman) he picks up in bars and clubs, or pays for (either in person or online).

Brandon is addicted to sex to such an extent that he's unable to emotionally deal with any woman he might have something more than physical relationship with, including an alluring co-worker (Nicole Beharie). His only real friend is his boss who goes out with him at night as his wingman, looking for women to cheat on his wife with.

From the outside looking in everything looks fine, but when his sister Sissy (Carey Mulligan), who has a host of her own problems, shows up unannounced to stay on his couch he's forced to take a good hard look at himself as his world quickly starts to unravel.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

White Collar - Checkmate

Now that Elizabeth (Tiffani Thiessen) has been kidnapped by Keller (Ross McCall) Neal (Matt Bomer) is forced to come clean to Peter (Tim DeKay) about the treasure. Keller wants a simply exchange - Elizabeth for the treasure. That Neal and Peter can't trust Keller is one problem, that Mozzie (Willie Garson) has disappeared with the treasure is another.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine #5

After surviving the Siphon, Buffy starts having dreams of the first Slayer. At first she thinks the Slayer is angry at Buffy breaking the line but she begins to suspect someone is using her dreams for their own purposes.

With the help of Willow Buffy goes back into her dreams to confront the Tinkerbell who was hijacking her dreams and find out what the Slayer really wants from her. Although she gets her answers, the truth will mean the departure of one of her closest friends. But that isn't the comic's biggest surprise which comes in the form of a final panel that's sure to change Buffy's life forever (and no doubt enrage quite a few fans).

Karl Moline takes over the art from Georges Jeanty but once again we're left with several panels where the characters only vaguely resemble their on-screen counterparts.

It's not a great single issue but it does set out a new path for Willow and set up an entirely new challenge for everyone's favorite slayer. Worth a look.

[Dark Horse, $2.99]

Glee – Yes/No

"Dude, you're in syncranized swimming and Glee. That's like some kind of weird death wish."

After taking a a few weeks off for its Winter hiatus Glee returns with a pair of love triangles, a wedding proposal (or two), and a humorous send-up of "Summer Nights" from Grease. As Will (Matthew Morrison) sets his sights on asking Emma (Jayma Mays) to marry him Artie (Kevin McHale) gets a new admirer (Lauren Potter), and Finn (Cory Monteith) makes an important decision about his future.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Hawaii Five-0 - Pu'olo

A heist of delivery truck leaves one driver dead, arobbery where nothing appears to be missing, and a second driver who is involved in a smuggling operation run by a notoriously paranoid gangster (Dante Basco). To find out what was in the unauthorized shipment stolen off the truck and track down the killers Five-0 is forced to ask for assistance from an old friend - Shang Min (Will Yun Lee).

Amazing Spider-Man #677

Mark Waid gives Dan Slott a week off for the first issue of a two-part crossover with Daredevil. When the Black Cat is arrested for burglarizing Horizon Labs Spider-Man calls on an old friend for help (much to the dismay of Matt Murdock who is still trying to convince people he's not Daredevil).

The issue has some fun Spidey/DD moments and banter including a race between the two from the top of Manhattan to the bottom and Spidey's recognition how helpful it is to team up with the blind guy against a villain who has stolen a holographic projector that makes the hero doubt what he sees. The banter between Black Cat and Spidey to open the issue is also a lot of fun.

I haven't been keeping up with Amazing Spider-Man lately given my lack of interest in Spider-Island and sheer the number of issues the title puts out every month. However, I have to say I love what Waid does with the ol' Web-Head here and I'm eagerly anticipating the conclusion of the arc this week. Best of the week.

[Marvel, $3.99]

Batman and Robin #5

Offered an alternative to being Batman's sidekick, Damian accepts Nobody's offer to work as his partner without the limitations Damian has been forced to accept as Robin. I really want to want to like this title more than I do, but once again we're left with an issue which is good but that could be so much better.

The Nobody/Damian storyline is limiting because we already know the outcome. There's no way DC is going to turn the current Robin into a cold-blooded killer this early in the New 52. However, if the arc softens the Bruce/Damain relationship all won't be in vain.

What's interesting to note is how much better this story would have been if Nobody's part had been played by Jason Todd, a former Robin, whose current outlook is far more like that of Damian than Batman.

Patrick Gleason's art has gotten better as he's gotten more comfortable with the characters, but writer Peter J. Tomasi struggles with Batman's epiphany about his behavior to his son. It feels far too forced for the version of Batman we've seen so far. Worth a look.

[DC, $2.99]

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Castle - Dial M for Mayor

When a young woman turns up dead in car connected to the Mayor's (Derek Webster) office Beckett (Stana Katic) is brought in to investigate. The case is complicated from the get-go by Castle's (Nathan Fillion) friendship with the Mayor and the victim's odd behavior over the past six months when she cut ties with her family, abandoned her life and promising teaching career, and started working at a phone sex line.

Secret Avengers #21

The final issue of Secret Avengers by writer Warren Ellis isn't bad, but then again it isn't all that great either. I won't go so far as to say he phoned it in, but this is a rather lackluster end to his run on the comic.

Steve Rogers as his team fake an emergency to break into the Office of National Emergency and rout out a high ranking traitor who has been finding intelligence to the Shadow Council.

The team learns the Super Soldier experiments taken from Paraguay and brought into O.N.E. have been activated by the traitor once the Avengers appeared. The creatures have been unleashed in the bowels of the building.

Rogers interrogation of the traitor works okay, but the team fighting the (rather generic-looking) monsters in the basement is far from thrilling. The comic also ends with a thoroughly unsatisfying ending as Captain America either allows a woman five feet away to commit suicide or was simply too stupid or too slow to stop her. I don't know, maybe the years are finally catching up with him? Hit and Miss.

[Marvel, $3.99]

Green Lantern #5

Hal Jordan and Sinestro's partnership comes to an end as the pair are able to successfully free Sinestro's homeworld of Korugar from his Sinestro Corps. Sinestro is good to his word by allowing Jordan to keep a ring, but returns him to Earth without the ability to charge it.

Once again writer Geoff Johns gives us a good Sinestro story but at the cost of Hal Jordan looking more and more like a chump. For a writer who has gone on record as how much he likes Jordan as a character, Johns sure has a lot of fun showcasing how little he knows about using his ring.

I'm not sure any character in the New 52 has fallen as far in terms of stature in his own title as Hal Jordan has. Seriously, why is Johns so intent on turning Hal Jordan into Kyle Rayner - a character who got the ring out of chance and has still never mastered it? Although I like the title, and I'm glad to see that the Hal/Carol relationship is as co-dependent as ever, I'd like for Hal to actually feel like the hero of old. Where is the universe's greatest Green Lantern? Worth a look.

[DC, $2.99]

Monday, January 16, 2012

Leverage - The Last Dam Job

In order to get the men who murdered his father (Tom Skerritt) Nate (Timothy Hutton) is going to need some help. Dubinech (Saul Rubinek) knows the team and their methods, after all he's the one who originally put them together. Now freed from jail his one responsibility is to keep Nate and his team away from Latimer (Leon Rippy). Not surprisingly, this turns out to be easier said than done.

Chuck Versus Bo

"Dude, Bo Derek is taking your pants off."

As the series nears its close and Chuck (Zachary Levi) and Sarah (Yvonne Strahovski) look to the future it's Morgan's (Joshua Gomez) past which comes back to mess up their lives. Not only does he have to deal with than man Alex (Mekenna Melvin) was seeing during their break-up but he's also confronted with an unsolved mission from his out-of-control Intersect days.

Haywire trailer

Director Steven Soderbergh tries his hand at an action thriller involving a black ops super soldier (Gina Carano) out for revenge after she is betrayed and set up during a mission. Michael AngaranoChanning TatumMichael DouglasAntonio BanderasEwan McGregor, and Michael Fassbender also star. Haywire opens in theaters on Friday.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Ricky Gervais, The Descendants, and The Artist a hit with the Golden Globes

Ricky Gervais returned to host the Golden Globes again Sunday night. The big winners of the night were The Descendants and The Artist taking home Best Picture Awards from Drama and Comedy respectively. Both films' leading men took home awards for Best Actor as well. I was happy to see Michelle Williams take home Best Actress for Comedy for My Weekend with Marilyn. On the television side Homeland was a big winner taking home the award for Best Drama and a Best Actress Award for Claire Danes. And Modern Family was Awarded the Golden Globe for Best Comedy. You can see the complete list of winners here.

Bones – The Crack in the Code

When a skull and spine are found left in the American Heritage Museum along with the blood of five FBI agents and a message taunting the police to find the rest of the corpse Booth (David Boreanaz) and Bones (Emily Deschanel) are put on the case. The mystery grows deeper when they discover the killer disassembled and reassembled the vertebrae, hiding a code, to further taunt the authorities.

Snake Eyes #9

The new Cobra Commander has made his first strike on the world. Snake Eyes, Helix, Iceberg, and Alpine head to the jungles of Nanzhao following the invasion of C.O.B.R.A. into the the Southeast Asian country central to the worldwide drug trade.

Although the issue is Part Two of the new "Cobra Command" crossover taking place in G.I. JOE and Cobra as well as Snake Eyes I didn't read Part One and was still able to follow the story easily.

As regular readers of the comic would expect the issue is full of some crazy fun including Snake Eyes battling H.I.S.S. Tanks and armored Heavy Metal Exoskeletal War Machines fans of Avatar should recognize.

The final panel shows us Storm Shadow (YES!), will be joining the storyline possibly as soon as next issue. Although there wasn't quite enough here to get me to check out the rest of "Cobra Command" (at least not yet), once again writer Chuck Dixon gives us a Snake Eyes comic that's an awful lot of fun. And arist Alex Cal doesn't miss a beat stepping in for Casey Maloney.

Worth a look.

[IDW, $3.99]

Person of Interest - Super

While recovering from his gunshot wounds Reese (Jim Caviezel) shadows the latest number from the machine - an apartment super (David Zayas) with a missing wife and who is keeping a close eye, maybe too close an eye, on one of the building's female tenants (Kelli Barrett).

Saturday, January 14, 2012

The Mentalist - Always Bet on Red

While the team investigates the murder of a defense lawyer Jane (Simon Baker) must deal with the return of FBI Agent Darcy (Catherine Dent) who while looking into the death of James Panzer (David Paymer) has inadvertently caught the attention of Red John.

Captain America #7

Maybe I'm getting Captain America fatigue (three issues in three weeks is quite a bit of old Cap). Or maybe I'm just not quite on board with this new story arc by Ed Brubaker.

The comic opens with three pages involving a prison riot caused by Codename: Bravo. The attempt here is to create ominous foreshadowing for something down the line, but it comes off more like a waste of 10% of a comic I spent $4 for.

The main story, which feels something taken right out of a Captain America comic of the 70's complete with mindbending bombs, riots, and the Falcon, features Steve Rogers still trying to figure out what the Serpent Squad did to him in the last issue to turn him back into puny Steve Rogers (and then punching him a couple times before... letting him go?).

The Shiny Trinket Maneuver

After inadvertently hurting Amy's (Mayim Bialik) feelings Sheldon (Jim Parsons) is forced to turn to Leonard (Johnny Galecki) and later Penny (Kaley Cuoco) for suggestions of how to make things right - without putting out too much effort. The solution for Sheldon, someone who can't apologize or show real remorse, is obvious - buy her a present.

Friday, January 13, 2012

The Iron Lady

The Iron Lady is as perplexing as it is forgettable. Coming off like a sanitized made-for-TV film that was given a bigger budget once it landed arguably the greatest living actress, the film is centered around some of the least important moments of one of the most important British politicians of the 20th Century. Like I said, perplexing.

In her waning days, after losing her husband, Margaret Thatcher (Meryl Streep) looks back on her career as she rose to power as Britain's first female Prime Minister during one of the country's most tumultuous periods. Despite detractors, and the fact that many of her monetary policies helped lead to high unemployment and social unrest (some of which is still felt today), the film certainly takes a pro-Thatcher stance.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

The Most Overrated Movie of 2011

Back in May a little film starring a mostly female cast and led by Kristen Wiig hit theaters and became the unexpected breakout comedic hit of the summer. Marketed to audiences as a The Hangover for women, Bridesmaids won favor not just with critics but with movie goers who stuffed theaters for months ballooning the film's total domestic box office to almost $170 million. What follows is a dissenting opinion.

In the past, along with my Best of the Year list, I've occasionally done a list for the worst films I've been forced to sit through as a film critic over the same year. Rather than do that for 2011 I decided to take a look at films which generated discussion and praise and find the one which rankled me the most. There was one clear winner.

The Scarlet Spider #1

I'm a fan of the Scarlet Spider. For those of you who don't know who that is, the Scarlet Spider was the alter-ego assumed by Peter Parker's clone when he was reintroduced to comics in the 1990's.

The Clone Saga has earned the animostity of several Spidey fans (some of it well-deserved), but despite many problematic elements (including its purpose to replace Peter with his clone as Spider-Man and its awful ending where the character literally disovled into dust for Marvel Comics to sweep under the rug) I'll look back on it fondly for introducing the character of the Scarlet Spider.

When I heard a new Scarlet Spider comic was in the works I was excited but confused. After all the character was long dead. Learning the new series would center around the character of Kaine (another clone reintroduced in the Clone Saga), a character I have no real fondness for, I was a little less sure of what to expect.

Bond celebrates turning 50 with new Blu-ray box set

Like Bond? James Bond? Want all 22 "official" Bond flicks on Blu-ray in one handy dandy collection? Now's your chance. For the franchise's 50th Anniversary MGM and 20th Century Fox are releasing a new box set with all the films plus 130 hours of bonus materials. You can find the full press release after the jump.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Reason #51 Why I Love DS9 - Shadowplay

There are many reasons why I love Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and why it remains my favorite of the Star Trek franchise.

Reason #51: Shadowplay