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DID YOU READ

DC’s New 52 Omnibus lets new readers jump into the universe without any “crisis”

DC’s New 52 Omnibus lets new readers jump into the universe without any “crisis” (photo)

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In the course of collecting comic books over the last 25 years, I’ve noticed that there are two things readers show up for: stories where everything falls apart and the corresponding rebirths from those cataclysmic events. DC Comics has been a pioneer of these major events, from their continuity shattering “Crisis on Infinite Earths” to the “Death Of Superman,” a storyline in 1992 was a comic book event that drew national media attention because the publisher was willing to take the risk of killing off one of their most beloved and internationally recognized characters to revitalize the storyline.

For most comics, it’s not easy to jump into the story. There’s a good chance that if you come from a comic book family, your Superman WAS your father’s Superman (and quite possibly your grandfather’s Superman depending on how old you are). In some cases, with continuities stretching back almost 75 years, romances have gone on for decades, heroes have died and come back from the gave (some more than once) and yet most of them stay between the ages of 28 and 35. It’s a lot for the next generation to catch up on, and those are the readers the industry needs.

Welcome to the New 52, an event that saw the cancellation of every currently running DC title at the end of last August and a relaunch in September starting with an all-new Justice League series by superstar talents Geoff Johns and Jim Lee. It was a bold move that achieved the twin goals of tearing down the house and getting the band back together in a single stroke. The heroes had been updated, retooled, their origins tweaked, their histories streamlined. And their were twists to hook in readers who feared they might be getting more of the same; the Man of Steel could get nosebleeds and Bruce Wayne was raising a ten year old son instead of mentoring orphan wards.

Three months after DC’s line-spanning reboot hit the shelves in their individual format, the entire line of “New 52” comics that we released in September have been collected in to a massive hardcover omnibus that is available today. And by massive, we mean that it wouldn’t hurt to have a magic ring or be powered by Earth’s yellow sun if you wanted to read this standing on the train.

Clocking in at a massive 1,216 pages, it’s a collection that pulls from DC’s pantheon of characters to create a wealth of visually charged moments. At the time of the relaunch, IFC picked some of our favorite titles, and now looking it over in one sitting reinforces some of the incredible things the event brought readers in a single month. Batman and the Joker taking on a riot together in Arkham Asylum, Wonder Woman rolling out of bed to wage a war against the Gods, and a young Clark Kent (now a hipster hero of the common man) taking on his first runaway train.

Along with the blockbuster action, there are also some wonderful “human” moments, like Green Lantern hitting up his ex to co-sign on a car loan and Aquaman facing off against snide blogger in a seafood restaurant, culminating in a “drop the mic” moment the Lord of Atlantis has earned after years of “your only power is to talk to fish” jokes.

While I’ve always been a fan of the rich history of comics, I understand that they need to grow, change and adapt to remain relevant. The collection is a great jumping on point for anyone who has been curious about getting back in to reading them, and with the final installment of Christopher Nolan’s Batman series and “Man of Steel” on the horizon, there’s sure to be a few.

“The New 52” Omnibus is perfect holiday gift for readers new and old, or a great addition to your own collection.

Will you be picking up the Omnibus? Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook or Twitter.

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Hacked In

Funny or Die Is Taking Over

FOD TV comes to IFC every Saturday night.

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We’ve been fans of Funny or Die since we first met The Landlord. That enduring love makes it more than logical, then, that IFC is totally cool with FOD hijacking the airwaves every Saturday night. Yes, that’s happening.

The appropriately titled FOD TV looks like something pulled from public access television in the nineties. Like lo-fi broken-antenna reception and warped VHS tapes. Equal parts WTF and UHF.

Get ready for characters including The Shirtless Painter, Long-Haired Businessmen, and Pigeon Man. They’re aptly named, but for a better sense of what’s in store, here’s a taste of ASMR with Kelly Whispers:

Watch FOD TV every Saturday night during IFC’s regularly scheduled movies.

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Wicked Good

See More Evil

Stan Against Evil Season 1 is on Hulu.

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Okay, so you missed the entire first season of Stan Against Evil. There’s no shame in that, per se. But here’s the thing: Season 2 is just around the corner and you don’t want to lag behind. After all, Season 1 had some critical character development, not to mention countless plot twists, and a breathless finale cliffhanger that’s been begging for resolution since last fall. It also had this:

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The good news is that you can catch up right now on Hulu. Phew. But if you aren’t streaming yet, here’s a basic primer…

Willards Mill Is Evil

Stan spent his whole career as sheriff oblivious to the fact that his town has a nasty curse. Mostly because his recently-deceased wife was secretly killing demons and keeping Stan alive.

Demons Really Want To Kill Stan

The curse on Willards Mill stipulates that damned souls must hunt and kill each and every town sheriff, or “constable.” Oh, and these demons are shockingly creative.

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They Also Want To Kill Evie

Why? Because Evie’s a sheriff too, and the curse on Willard’s Mill doesn’t have a “one at a time” clause. Bummer, Evie.

Stan and Evie Must Work Together

Beating the curse will take two, baby, but that’s easier said than done because Stan doesn’t always seem to give a damn. Damn!

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Beware of Goats

It goes without saying for anyone who’s seen the show: If you know that ancient evil wants to kill you, be wary of anything that has cloven feet.

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Season 2 Is Lurking

Scary new things are slouching towards Willards Mill. An impending darkness descending on Stan, Evie and their cohort – eviler evil, more demony demons, and whatnot. And if Stan wants to survive, he’ll have to get even Stanlier.

Stan Against Evil Season 1 is now streaming right now on Hulu.

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SO EXCITED!!!

Reminders that the ’90s were a thing

"The Place We Live" is available for a Jessie Spano-level binge on Comedy Crib.

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Unless you stopped paying attention to the world at large in 1989, you are of course aware that the ’90s are having their pop cultural second coming. Nobody is more acutely aware of this than Dara Katz and Betsy Kenney, two comedians who met doing improv comedy and have just made their Comedy Crib debut with the hilarious ’90s TV throwback series, The Place We Live.

IFC: How would you describe “The Place We Live” to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Dara: It’s everything you loved–or loved to hate—from Melrose Place and 90210 but condensed to five minutes, funny (on purpose) and totally absurd.

IFC: How would you describe “The Place We Live” to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Betsy: “Hey Todd, why don’t you have a sip of water. Also, I think you’ll love The Place We Live because everyone has issues…just like you, Todd.”

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IFC: When you were living through the ’90s, did you think it was television’s golden age or the pop culture apocalypse?


Betsy: I wasn’t sure I knew what it was, I just knew I loved it!


Dara: Same. Was just happy that my parents let me watch. But looking back, the ’90s honored The Teen. And for that, it’s the golden age of pop culture. 

IFC: Which ’90s shows did you mine for the series, and why?

Betsy: Melrose and 90210 for the most part. If you watch an episode of either of those shows you’ll see they’re a comedic gold mine. In one single episode, they cover serious crimes, drug problems, sex and working in a law firm and/or gallery, all while being young, hot and skinny.


Dara: And almost any series we were watching in the ’90s, Full House, Saved By the Bell, My So Called Life has very similar themes, archetypes and really stupid-intense drama. We took from a lot of places. 

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IFC: How would you describe each of the show’s characters in terms of their ’90s TV stereotype?

Dara: Autumn (Sunita Mani) is the femme fatale. Robin (Dara Katz) is the book worm (because she wears glasses). Candace (Betsy Kenney) is Corey’s twin and gives great advice and has really great hair. Corey (Casey Jost) is the boy next door/popular guy. Candace and Corey’s parents decided to live in a car so the gang can live in their house. 
Lee (Jonathan Braylock) is the jock.

IFC: Why do you think the world is ready for this series?

Dara: Because everyone’s feeling major ’90s nostalgia right now, and this is that, on steroids while also being a totally new, silly thing.

Delight in the whole season of The Place We Live right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib. It’ll take you back in all the right ways.