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, columnist Steve Bennett ties up some loose ends from previous columns involving Shang-Chi, Svengoolie, and Batman.

The reviews for Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings have been (as far as I can tell) entirely positive, and there have been precious few hysterically negative YouTube videos.  In fact, I found only three; it’s one thing to fervently hope and wish that a film will be a failure (as in Why Shang Chi Will Fail), but it takes unimaginable nerve to declare it "A Complete Box Office Failure For Marvel Studios" after it’s already made an estimated four-day gross of over $93 million.

I had every intention of seeing Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings only in theaters (see “Confessions Of A Comic Book Guy -- Inching Back Towards Movie Theaters”),  until I saw that all 88 counties in Ohio have the highest level of coronavirus transmission." While I’m fully vaccinated, I am also old-ish and not in the best of health; and Shang-Chi is just a movie, one that will become available on Disney+ October 18 after its 45-day cinematic run.

Until then, there’s the Shang-Chi comic by writer Gene Luen Yang and artist Dike Ruan, the latest issue of which is shipping this week. It’s part four of the Shang-Chi Vs. The Marvel Universe storyline, and as that title would suggest it has Shang establishing his fighting credentials by meeting up and then beating up various Marvel heroes. It’s the sort of thing that once upon a time made for a lot of extremely dull issues of Marvel Two-In-One, but Yang has done a fine job of making Shang-Chi much more than a mere fight fest.

Back in March (see "Confessions Of A Comic Book Guy -- Now And then, Then Is Now"), I wrote about Locast, a streaming service that for a mere $5 a month you could get not just all of your local channels, but a plethora of Nostalgia channels (Antenna TV, Cozi, Retro TV, Decades, Start TV, MeTV).  I got it primarily so I could watch Svengoolie on Saturday nights. but soon learned that, along with several hours of cartoons, on Saturdays MeTV also ran two hours of The Three Stooges. I have to confess I hadn't seen a single Stooges short in twenty years, but I've found that I still loved them. I also found out that I still had an extremely low tolerance for the comedy stylings of Mr. Shemp Howard, and don’t get me started on Joe Besser or Curly Joe DeRita.

Well, that's all over because a judge granted "an injunction against television streaming app Locast from transmitting their local TV streams to customers."  ABC, CBS, Fox, and NBC were planning to seek a permanent injunction, but before they could Locast decided to quietly close up shop. This left me with a moral dilemma; do I want to watch Svengoolie enough to be willing to pay for Cable?

Back in August, I wrote about Batman's outdated crime-fighting methodology (see " Confessions of a Comic Book Guy -- The Dark Knight Revised "). In particular, I wrote about writer Garth Ennis' contention that Batman was " a billionaire aristocrat who beats up poor people, as well as the mentally ill".  Well, in Batman: Reptilian #3 written by Ennis, he seems to respond to at least the accusation he doesn’t care about the poor when he asks Alfred “If you genuinely think I don’t care about the economically disadvantaged, how do you explain the foundation’s various programs established to help them as children?”

Bruce Wayne earns points for trying to do the right thing, but given the current state of Gotham City, it’s pretty clear this alone isn’t getting the job done. Maybe it’s time for Bruce to try something new as well.

The opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the writer, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the editorial staff of