‘The Eightfold Path’ (An Endorsement)

If anything can be said about Abrams ComicArts books, it’s that they are undeniably beautiful. Aside from what lies within their pages, the books themselves are works of art. They are portable museums. The colors, the weight and heft of the paper used, the end paper designs, the cover images chosen, these make the books worth looking at. The stories being told? These make the books worth buying. Their Megascope imprint? These books are worth collecting.

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A Talk With ‘Midnight Mass’ Star Crystal Balint, Crockett Island’s First Lady

Mysterious new pastors, a series of disappearances, apocalyptic signs of biblical scale; what’s a loving mother, and wife of a cursed town’s mayor supposed to do? I sat down with Crystal Balint in the virtual sense to find the answer.

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USA’s ‘The Rev’ Star Pastor Richard Hartley Talks Reality Show, Family Life, and More

USA’s hilarious new inspirational TV series The Rev has been delivering the kind of comedy only eccentric Pastor Richard Hartley can deliver. Consisting of eight 30-minute episodes, the series captures the world of the larger-than-life pastor and his family.

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The Middle Geeks Episode 7: The Prince of Egypt

This month on  The Middle Geeks, we discuss Dreamworks’ 1998 masterpiece, The Prince of Egypt. Why does this film resonate so much with people, including and besides its religious aspects? We discuss the representation aspects of the film, how it did well at depicting the ancient Middle East, and how the rich character drama and design holds it up today. We also give the deets on the delicious food at our Middle Eastern households during Thanksgiving and give our recommendations! (We start our The Prince of Egypt discussion at the 7:10 mark.)

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Birth of a Nation is Poorly Done Slavery Pain-Porn

Nate Parker stars in the Nat Turner biopic film, Birth of a Nation. While most true story adaptations include a few embellishments, don’t go into this expecting anything remotely accurate. After having done some research, very little of what is presented in this film can be found as historical fact. What Parker has created is a sloppy, amateurish, slavery pain-porn film, rife with Christianity overkill. It’s a mockumentary of Nat Turner’s legacy and tries to trick its audience into thinking this is an actual part of history.

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Everything Wrong with Christian Bale as Moses

by Dion Beary

I’m throwing a temper tantrum over this one. Christian Bale cannot play Moses. No. I know arguing against the whitewashing of a Biblical character is a lost cause, and wandering into any mainstream Christian church decked out with portraits of a blue-eyed Jesus Christ should indicate that the tide isn’t changing anytime soon, but I still find myself just a little more perturbed than average to see Batman play the savior of the Hebrews.

Maybe it’s because in recent years we’ve seen a new wave of white outrage against racebending traditionally white characters. Racebending refers to altering the canonical race of a character. Whitewashing is a type of racebending wherein non-white characters become white or are not included whatsoever. For simplicity’s sake, this piece will use the term whitewashing to refer to that absence of colored folks, while racebending will be used to refer to white characters becoming non-white. Those aren’t exact definitions, but hey, if Christian Bale can play Moses, then I can bend a couple of rules too.

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S.H.O.O.T. First, Ask Justin Aclin Questions

Justin Aclin (@justinaclin), the writer and creator of Dark Horse Comics’ S.H.O.O.T. First, joins Keith (@the_real_chow) for a special one-on-one interview to talk about one of the most fun, provocative, and diverse comics on the stands today.

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Breaking Bats and Monkeys

Earlier I wrote about the endless narrative possibilities available in the superhero comics genre. Of course, comics are not the only medium to enjoy the fractal narrative. Philip Marlowe, the Continental Op, and Sherlock Holmes are ageless detectives forever solving crimes in short stories and novels. If Jet Li had so desired it, Tsui Hark would probably have made fifty more Wong Fei-Hong movies. And the Brits have the idea down with James Bond and Doctor Who.

But while the fractals can expand forever, artists given to make their own new stories and interpretations can sometimes make changes that are so drastic that they change the nature of the character the audience has come to know. Artists should of course be able to bend and experiment with characters to find new avenues, but there must be limits, no? Because the danger in the course of bending a character is the potential of breaking it.

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Dark Horse’s S.H.O.O.T. First Takes On Bad Religion

No not the influential punk band from the 80s — or even the Frank Ocean song, for that matter. Instead, the next big thing from Dark Horse Comics is a book about a covert team of agents that battle the seemingly supernatural forces bent on destroying our world. All the team has to cancel the apocalypse are weapons fueled only by their non-belief. That’s right, in S.H.O.O.T. First, a team of super atheists battle angels and demons. Think Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. but with Bill Maher as Coulson and Richard Dawkins as Fury.

It’s also my favorite comic book on the stands right now.

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