Confessions of a Comic Book Guy--Barnabas Collins Lives!
Column by Steve Bennett
Published: 04/25/2012, Last Updated: 04/27/2012 03:36am
Confessions of a Comic Book Guy is a weekly column by Steve Bennett of Super-Fly Comics and Games in Yellow Springs, Ohio. This week, Bennett looks at the book tied to Morgan Spurlock's Comic-Con movie, and at the summer blockbusters.
As regular readers of these things know I've never been to Comic-Con, the comic book convention formerly known as San Diego, and at this rate I might never get to attend. For that matter I still haven't seen Morgan Spurlock's 2011 documentary Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope, but I have read the book of the same name, subtitled "an all-access look at the world's largest pop culture event by Morgan Spurlock; featuring photography by Alba Tull." I briefly thought I'd say "I found it sitting on a shelf at Super-Fly Comics & Games" but I won't lie to you; I didn't even know this book existed because saw a copy at the local library. And curious to see what Comic-Con might look like as seen from the outside, I borrowed it.
It's basically a glorified coffee table book that combines some really nice photographs by Alba Tull and a hodgepodge of congratulatory quotes from and testimonials by celebrities and celebrity nerds. A little of that whole "we are the dreamer of dreams" stuff gets a bit old after a while but the photos are genuinely remarkable. You don't have to go very far on the Internet to find photos of people engaging in Cosplay (only so far as this site, see "C2E2 Report--Part 1"), but it's a revelation seeing them done by a gifted photographer. Sure there are lots of shots of attractive celebrities but where Tull really excels is at capturing the joy ordinary looking people
find getting dressed up in less than ordinary ways. I myself appear to have been born without the dress-up gene but I can certainly appreciate it in others and there are some especially sweet shots of families with small children.
But the real highlight of the book, for me anyway, comes on pages 166-67 which features the overwhelming incongruity of seeing Grant Morrison wearing a Big Bang Theory t-shirt. I wish I could say it was one with "Soft Kitty" on it but no, it's a black number featuring Sheldon's maxim "There's a fine line between wrong and visionary. Unfortunately you have to be a visionary to see it." Now having read the book I'll really have to get around to seeing the film.
Well, I was perusing the Summer Movie Preview special double issue of Entertainment Weekly (featuring yet another cover featuring the remarkably over-detailed Batman costume which, the more I see it, becomes more and more disturbing) and while I am a comic book guy good and true I just don't know how much of a hurry I'm going to be to see the plethora of summer superhero movies. Okay, The Avengers, sure, if you're going to see one superhero movie this summer it pretty much has to be this one--but, frankly, the only reason I absolutely know I'll be seeing it opening weekend is because the woman in my life finds Robert Downey Jr. to be just dreamy.
But it's entirely possible that I will only see one superhero movie this summer. I honestly don't know if it's advancing age or I've finally reached my saturation point but as it stands now I'd rather see Battleship over The Dark Knight Rises. And my interest in seeing The Amazing Spider-Man first run is only slightly better. Given how me wanting to see a film usually equals the kiss of death, box office-wise (Speed Racer, Scott Pilgrim, The Adventures of Tintin, John Carter, etc.) It's probably not a good sign for its producers that the one movie that I really want to see this summer is Dark Shadows.
Dark Shadows before.
The opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the writer, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the editorial staff of ICv2.com.
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