Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Half-blood prince

Were these two separated at birth?

Heat Miser................................................... Syndrome

JK Rowling has finished Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, so Mrs. Blog o’ Stuff will probably happy when I tell her.

I don’t know where my head’s been lately, work has been annoyingly too busy, life has been hectic and we are only days away from a visit from the big guy in red. Somehow, I forgot to mention Conan yesterday in the good comics of 2004. The #0 issue came out last year and the ongoing reaches issue 11 this week. I haven’t read the old Marvel issues (now being reissued in TPB form by Dark Horse) so I can’t justifiably compare what Roy Thomas and Barry Windsor-Smith did to the monthly excellence Kurt Busiek and Cary Nord are producing. The sales have been great on the book and the fan and critical response have been spectacular. I think Mr. Howard would be pleased with the work Busiek and Nord are doing with his most famous of creations.

Another good thing for this DC-fanboy was Grant Morrison’s return to DC comics. Earlier this year saw the great looking Seaguy from Vertigo, a three-issue series that blended superheroics, apocalyptic sf and dark humor into a thought provoking series people are STILL trying to figure out. WE3, Grant’s animal SF story with Frank Quietly is 2/3 of the way complete and this, even though the characters are cybernetically enhanced talking animals, may be a more human story. Mr. Morrison also returned to JLA, in the form of a story arc for JLA Classified. Under his pen, JLA was DC’s flagship title in the late 90s. Rumors have him and Quietly working on Superman next year, so the future is only bright, on that front.

In this week's Science Fiction Weekly, Paul Di Filippo gives a nice review/overview of Jack Vance’s Dying Earth. Vance pretty much created a sub-genre with these stories, that of a a Dying Earth where technology and magic blend together. The creators of Dungeons and Dragons specifically cite the Dying Earth as an inspiration, some of the spells take the names of the characters. Gene Wolfe acknowledges The Dying Earth as an inspiration for his Book of the New Sun and George R.R. Martin considers Vance a master.

No comments: