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Dear Fanboy Comics Readers:

Intrepid FBC Contributor J.C. Ciesielski has decided to bestow an uber-gracious giveaway item to our readers. Given J.C.’s Pittsburgh roots, he was the perfect contributor to review the ‘Burgh-based film, The Perks of Being a Wallflower (Read J.C.’s review here.), and using his superhero-like skills, J.C. was also able to snag an official film poster signed by the film’s writer/director, Stephen Chbosky. (The poster is pictured to the right).


FlightHe’s back!

After 12 years of wandering in the wilderness of the Uncanny Valley, Oscar winner and film geek patron saint Robert Zemeckis has returned to live-action filmmaking.  I was never sure why the director of such modern classics as the Back to the Future trilogy, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, and Forrest Gump would leave live-action filmmaking behind to devote himself to motion capture technology.  I mean, what’s the point of putting Tom Hanks in a motion capture suit just so you can reanimate him as a dead-eyed, super creepy character that more or less looks just like Tom Hanks?  Why not just shoot that as live action?  MoCap always makes a lot more sense to me when Andy Serkis is playing a chimp.

I suppose I can see the allure to an extent since Zemeckis has always been a director who pushed the visual effects envelope.  But, after his production company was defunded by Disney following the box office disaster that was Mars Needs Moms, Zemeckis has returned to us 12 years after his last live-action film, Cast Away.

DishonoredSkulking through shadows, lining up your perfect kill, and, oh yeah, freezing time and teleporting across rooms to your heart's content. Dishonored is another in a growing trend of assassin games, but it offers plenty of new concepts to the genre. After the Empress is murdered and the blame pinned on you, her protector, you don a mask and set out to eliminate those behind the conspiracy that killed her and ruined your life, one by one . . .


Avengers vs. X-MenI’m not the biggest fan of crossovers, especially when it becomes a company-wide event such as Marvel’s previous Secret Invasion, Fear Itself, or Siege storylines, because it tends to require me to read a lot of titles that I normally have no interest in, and don’t know the full background of, just in order to get the entire experience of the storyline.  However, considering I already read Avengers and X-Men titles, it was harder for me to ignore the AvX event, and so I took on the task of reading it all for review purposes.

Sadly, I wasn’t surprised by the majority of the storyline—it was pretty easy to see where certain characters would fall in regards to the division amongst the heroes—but there were a couple of surprises that really threw me for a loop, and the consequences of the event will forever change the Marvel Universe (or at least that’s what Marvel NOW! proponents keep saying).


tmnt 2012New on the Tube is a series devoted to reviewing relatively new television shows and determining how they may (or may not) appeal to their intended audiences, where the shows are going, and what can be done to make them better.

Show Premise: 

15-year-old turtles with ninjutsu skills decide to take on the world above their New York sewer home, but end up coming into conflict with groups and individuals who wish to do them harm.  In the midst of it all, they befriend a teenaged girl named April, as well as learn more about their mysterious past and how certain elements have had a hand in their development since the very beginning.  Full of impatience, dangerous martial abilities, and the will to change things for the better, they become “heroes in a half-shell.”  The show airs on Saturdays at 11:00 a.m. (Eastern) on Nickelodeon.



Womanthology Space 2After the rousing success of Womanthology: Heroic, it comes as no surprise that additional volumes would release or that they would be just as good. Unlike Heroic, Space is being released in individual issues. I actually prefer this format, even if the full volume looks nicer on a bookshelf. It's a lot easier to pick up an issue and read three stories instead of the dozens right after one another, and the issue still include the same great comic creation tips, bonus artwork, and information about the authors as the complete volume.


The SkyI developed a love for art at a very young age, appreciating it on a different level than many of my peers. Do you remember as a kid you would flip through the instruction manual for your NES games like Final Fantasy or Legend of Zelda, and they had that FANTASTIC artwork of all the wondrous creatures you would be encountering on your adventure? And then, you pop in the game and each of these beautiful designs is depicted as a tiny, 8-bit red or blue splotch on the screen? Friends would ask me why they'd put so much effort into these drawings if the final product isn't going to resemble it in the slightest? For me, it helped paint the picture in my head of exactly what dangers I was facing. Sure, on screen they didn't look all that special, but those images from the booklet helped paint a picture for my young mind to conjure up heroes, princesses, and assorted baddies I'd meet during my travels.

These are the thoughts that came flooding back to me as I flipped through the pages of The Sky: The Art of Final Fantasy, a five-book collection showcasing the elegant and alluring artwork of Yoshitaka Amano through the first ten Final Fantasy games. Having been a Final Fantasy enthusiast since day one, I would latch onto anything FF-related I could get my grubby, little hands on. Freshman year of college I took advantage of the high-speed internet to download the FF games that had only been released in Japan.


Robots in Disguise 10The main storyline of Robots in Disguise – the reconstruction of Cybertron in the wake of the Great War – gets a vacation for a one-and-done story that continues the roaming saga of Optimus Prime and a handful of others.  In deep space, Prime pursues the truth behind a deadly plan hatched by the Decepticons’ greatest scientists, Shockwave and Jhiaxus.

Argo AffleckBen Affleck is a force to be reckoned with. Never in my twenty-eight years of life - not after Armaggeddon and certainly not after Gigli - did I think I'd ever write those ten words. But, with Argo, Affleck shows such a mastery of storytelling that I don't even want to point out some of the minor flaws lest it detract from just how well-made this picture is. This is a movie that has serious chops come awards season, and I wouldn't be surprised if Ben Affleck - he of Reindeer Games, mind you - gets not only a Best Director nod, but a Best Picture nomination, as well.



Smoke and Mirrors TPBI can never tell if it’s a good thing or a bad thing if a comic is so engaging that I’m furious when it’s over.  Did the author do such a good job of creating narrative magic that I’m desperate for more, or did he entice me with just enough that I crave some promised resolution?  Smoke and Mirrors in its trade form gives a first-time reader an insatiable appetite for plot as it sucks you into a world driven by magic instead of science.  I can’t imagine how I would have felt reading this month to month, but I can tell you the trade is well . . . magical.

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