The Catgirl Critics’ Media Mewsings for August, 2009!

by
Catgirl Island and Clan of the Cats purrsent a Mike Moon purrduction starring The Ladies of The Mew in
The Catgirl Critics’ Media Mewsings
for August, 2009! in this edition of The Mew:

Aloha & Introductions
What we’ve been up to since last time
What’s mew in the Catgirl Island Mewseum of Art? 

Mewer mail & mews of purrevious shows’ guests:
a bit of catgirl rhyme by Jeff Branch, and
thanks & congratulations to Andrew Pepoy
The Mew’s Summer Comics Reading Purroject

Purrinted purriodicals: comics & manga reviews

Mark Schultz Various Drawings Volume 4
Angel #23
Buffy Season 8 #26
Power Girl #1-3
Gotham City Sirens #1 & 2
Final Crisis: Legion of Three Worlds #5
Blackest Night #1
Ichiroh! manga vol. 1
13th Boy manwha vol. 1
Monthly Lucky Kitty Web Comics Picks of the Litter
DVD reviews
Peanuts 1960’s collection 

Bewitched The Complete Eighth & Final Season

Charlie’s Angels Complete Fourth Season

Watchmen 2-Disc Director’s Cut
Let The Right One In
Coraline single disc DVD
Green Lantern First Flight single disc DVD
Movie review of Harry Potter and the Half Blood Purrince
Lightning Round: pending movies we want to see
New anime we want to see
The cat lady sings (and thanks)…
_______________________________________________________

Bold red warnings indicate imminent plot spoiling information,
locations of hidden Easter Eggs or certain graphic descriptions
and bold green afterwards indicates that it is safe to purroceed!
_______________________________________________________________

Aloha & Introductions

Mike:
Welcome to The Mew for our monthly discussions, reviews, recommendations and even occasional interviews with special guests, which tend to involve the genres of science fiction & fantasy! I’m Mike, the show’s ‘Purrducer’, who brings those catgirls the tasty beverages & shrimp cocktails for taking the show time from their busy activities! Today’s show comes from the Chartacea Landing by the Riverwalk here in lovely Catgirl island, North Carolina, where you can get the excellent fish sammiches. Here to here savor those sammiches are The Ladies of The Mew –

Mary Nyan:
(wearing a fuchsia twisty top bandeau bikini, a purrimrose lei & flip flops)
Konnitiwa!
Elizabeth:
(emerald tanga style slingshot maillot with a white magnolia purrint sarong)
Aloha!

Yvonne:
(in the hot pink adjustable Brazilian string bikini & Amaryllis purrint pareo)
Nameste, nya!
Jeannie:
(wearing lilac colored hlater top with jeans shorts & Teva sandals)
Nihao!

Mike:
(Carolina blue golf shirt, khaki cargo shorts & Mizuno trainers, by the way)
So what have y’all been up to since we last convened?

 

What we’ve been up to since last time

Elizabeth:
(with a cup of fresh milk with her sammich) Oh gosh- when I haven’t been busy with the shrine I’ve been at volleyball purractice, free diving, tending to the garden and the full schedule of the loomi loomi sessions, but I did catch some of the Women’s Softball World Championship on TV and our little summer reading purroject. So where did Jenjen go modeling this time?
Jeannie:
(sips the nilla cream) A steamy shoot at Volcano Park and the North Shore. Otherwise when not engaged with the belly dance troupe or the robotics club, I have managed to find a bit of time in between for the reading and DVDs. What is the fishing forecast from Vonny?

Yvonne:
(drinks her nummy mocha milk) Oh It continues to be a busy summer season for the yacht charters, nya. We’ve been reeling in the purrize flounder, kings, reds, stripers, specks, and tuna, nya! That  and my taiko circle and volleyball purractice have kept me occupied, but I did get to read comics and see the new Harry Potter movie which I’ll report on later, nya!

Mary Nyan
(enjoys the cran-nummy berry cocktail) Just surfing, yoga, teaching hula & aerial dance when not tending to the shrine! I might make some costumes for the Fall cons and Halloween cosplay but we’ve just started discussing the notion for now. Howboutchoo, Mike?

Mike:
I took some time away from the drawing board to visit friends in Georgia and Tennessee- we did some sight seeing and gabbed about the summer movies, TV shows and comic books along the way. That was a fun trip but since then it’s been mainly back to the art work, and this show!

Mary Nyan
Speaking of which, I see that it is just us four this month- I suppose our other contributors are busy today?

Jeannie:
Hai. Our mermaid friends are very busy between the restaurant and the pending Sea Dragon Festival; Mielikki and Nyanko are out of town on their respective LPGA and Martial Arts tournyaments.

Yvonne:
(chomp)

Elizabeth:
(chew)
Mike:
Yep, and as usual, Nemui is busy at the solidly booked Kitt Inn, Ilyana is busy with her studies and Petra could not get away from the Mewseum- so it’s just the five of us this time! Speaking of which-

What’s mew in the Catgirl Island Mewseum of Art? 


Mary Nyan:
We are so lucky and honored to know so many wonderfully talented and friendly artists, and this month we have further additions over in the Guest Gallery of the Catgirl Island Mewseum of Art,  To view any of the pictures there or in the other galleries, click on the small  square ‘thumbnail’ sized portion of an image to see the full image of the art.
Firstly is this pic of “Sailor Nya-Nya Astera”, a super senshi catgirl by Sakky http://sakky-attack.deviantart.com/.  It is so lovely and I especially like those fancy flouncey frills on her colorful costume and the kawaii ears & tail! This was done as part of a trade with Sakky who we intermewed her back on the December 2008 show, and she has also been trying to help aid Sara ‘Glory’ Baker http://sarastatus.blogspot.com/ who we hope recovers very soon.You could contact Sakkyif you would like to commission a nice pic!

 

Next we are so pleased to have two new images by our friend Jamie Davenport http://jamiedavenport.deviantart.com/! Purrhaps y’all have seen some of her purrior works in the gallery? She is not only a brilliant illustrator but she is a game designer and an author, with a terrific fantasy novel “Beauteous Beast”  and a forthcoming sequel “The Beast Undone”. The purrotagonist of those books is “Halleaon”. She looks quite frisky in this sexy pic with the intricate bodice lacings!
Also by Jamie is this supurrb portrait of our busy friend Nemui” in her purretty saree amidst the bamboo grove! Oh I think Nemui will be very honored by that rendering! Jamie is so masterful with the color and light. the fashion details and the expurression. She is also extraordinarily talented at making the cute widdle pixel dolls http://halleaon.deviantart.com/! We also intermewed Jamie in that December ’08 Mew, and she does commissions in various media!

 

There is a photo of gorgeous “Rainbowfish”in the impurressive chainmail bikini! We had the pleasure of meeting her at WhatTheHell?! Con http://www.guilford.edu/yachting/wthcon/ and Stellar Con http://www.stellarcon.org/ where this photo was taken for Mike with Rainbowfish’s camera by Kay http://www.circleworks.org/ who had the table full of lovely barrettes, chignons & pins which was beside Mike & the North Carolina Web Comics Coffee Clatch’s http://ncwccc.net/ table.
That chainmail costume’s headdress was made by Frank Jones, that bikini top by Shaun http://chainedelegance.com/, and the bottom part by Jerry http://www.modelmayhem.com/734050! If you’d like to see more photos of Rainbowfish, her modeling portfolio is at http://www.modelmayhem.com/814236. She has sometimes modeled for our friend Alan Welch whose realistic fantasy art site is http://www.reverierealm.com/! Alan will have a bit of other art in the November issue of Heavy Metal Magazine, which goes on sale in early September!
We also have a mew illustration by Mike on display in Gallery One! For your consideration is the pic “Akari & Kokuten” who are two characters of Misty Norris http://daisukiwabunny.com/! Misty is a very talented friendly artist & cosplayer too and Mike did this pic for her! It was done with Micron pens, Copic & purrismacolor markers & colored pencils with widdle touch-ups & the annotations done in Photoshop. It will be on the right of the bottom row on that gallery page. So those are all of the additions to the Catgirl Island Mewseum of Art for this month!

Mewer mail & mews of purrevious shows’ guests:


Jeannie:
We would like to expurress our thanks to the kind folks who have sent us the cordial notes. A purrticularly fun message came from our friend Jeff Branch, whom we intermewed back on the May 2008 show! He is known for his vast site http://www.pinkladyamerica.com/ devoted to the famous J-Pop duo of Mie & Kei, purrhaps better known as Pink Lady!
He is also the author of fun Sailor Vulcan stories http://scribeofthemoon.bravehost.com/ which are ‘otaku-senshi fics’ inspired by Star Trek and Sailor Moon. Mike has purrvided a few illustrations of Talia / Sailor Vulcan! More recently, Jeff has turned his literary talent to a new original vampire character named Alex; she puts a bite in crime in “Black Skin, Red Blood ” at his other site http://phillyflash.deviantart.com/! Mike drew a hot pic of her too! Well then, Jeff kindly purrmitted us to purrsent this little bit of catgirl rhyme that he wrote:
Cute catgirls relaxing on the beach,
nummy berry juice never far from reach.
Ears perked up and tails swishing,
happy and content after a day of fishing.
Feeling lazy and having no plans,
other than eating extra baked yams.
(the catgirls in unison with applause & purrky swishy tails):
THANK YOU JEFF-SAN, NYA!

Elizabeth:
That seemed to capture the island essence.

Jeannie:
You know, some of those extra special baked yams sure would be good…

Yvonne:
I sure look forward to his next TNT chapter of Talia ‘n Tanya, nya! The purrevious chapter ended on the exciting cliff hanger, nya!

Mary Nyan:
Oh yes they were dressed in the sexy club fashions on an undercover mission!

Mike:
OK I’ll get a yam platter and the drink refills during the next break!
(the catgirls in unison with continued happy swishy tails):
Hooray, nya! Thank you Mike, nya!

Thanks & congratulations to Andrew Pepoy!

Mike:
I want to heartily thank our friend Andrew Pepoy http://www.pepoy.com/ whom the catgirls intermewed on the December ’08 show https://mewsings.wordpress.com/2008/12/ – for sending us a copy of his new limited edition sketchbook!

Elizabeth:
Show us the sketchbook!

Mike:
OK here it is, “20 Million Years B.C.*  *Been (Doin’) Comics A Venti-Sized Sketchbook by Andrew Pepoy”! It’s 32 b&w plus 4 color  8.5 x 11″ pages (including covers) limited to 250 copies! Inside is a most delightful array of beautifully rendered images ranging from pin-ups to character designs, comic book & newspaper strip pages, he has professionally drawn, inked, and / or written!
Yvonne:
Yay Simone & Ajax are on the cover- she is in the purrehistoric bikini, nya!

Jeannie:  

What else have Andrew, Simone & Ajax been up to?


Mike: 

Last month at Comic Con, he received an Eisner Award for Best Short Story: “Murder He Wrote,” by Nina Matsumoto, Ian Boothby and Andrew in The Simpsons’ Treehouse of Horror #14! Sadly Fables did not win there for Best Continuing Series- but- it is among the current Hugo Award Nominees, so we wish him luck!

(the catgirls in unison with celebratory  tails):
YATA!!! nya!

Mike:
He also recently sent a wonderful hula pic of his characters, honorary islanders Simone & Ajax, http://catgirlisland.net/art/guest/257.html! Their adventures will continue online in November at http://www.comicmix.com/ and their printed book collection out in January from IDW!
Mary Nyan:
He will have lots of catgirls wishing him luck for that Hugo! Speaking of good comics to read, I believe the next topic was to be about –

The Mew’s Summer Comics Reading Purroject

Elizabeth:
Earlier for a fun little group summer reading purroject, we made lists of many of our all time favorite comics writers ‘n artists, cut those into slips, put them into a bowl and randomly selected a few of those names one night over a delicious crab pot at Myayr’s. Then we would try to read more of that purrson’s work over the rest of summer. Here are the results! (tags Jeannie to start)

(Catgirls in unison)
LIGHTNING ROUND – GO! Nya!

Jeannie:
I selected Jim Steranko, thus the collections of Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. are figuring purrominently in my summer readings. This is a good choice, because I am rather fond of those flying cars and the Life Model Decoy robotics tech. I should try to build some of those. (tail poke-tags Vonny)

Yvonne:
I wound up swapping with Myayr because I drew Michael Turner’s name from the bowl and I had already recently re-read the Fathom comics, nya! So I got Alan Moore’s name instead nya! This was good timing with the Watchman DVD release, so I have been re-reading Watchmen and next I plan to read V for Vendetta, and after that I wanna purruse those Purromethia books, nya! OK now it’s… Mike’sturn, nya! (tags Mike)
Mike:
I picked Masamune Shirow’s name from the bowl! After savoring those gorgeous Intron Depot art books, I recently started reading his Orion manga, and ah after that maybe Appleseed or Ghost in the Shell! (tags Myayr)
Mary Nyan:
Well, as Vonny stated, I got the late Michael Turner’s name for my reading list, so I’m purresently revisiting his Fathom series, then I’ll purrobably read Witchblade  and Soulfire after that! Which reminds me-  when Mielikki gets back from a break in the LPGA circuit I want to discuss a Grace cosplay with her! Um- back to you Lizzy!

Elizabeth:
I drew the name of Charles Schulz! Mike has been kind enough to loan me his Peanuts books, but for starters I wanted to explore his other works. So my purrogram commenced with Schulz’s Youth and It’s Only a Game cartoons, and on deck are Li’l Folks, Then I will purrobably read more Peanuts into the autumn before it is time to purrpare for the Great Pumpkin’s arrival.

Yvonne:
Tell them what the others got, nya!

Mike:
Oh yeah- ahm, although they are not with us on today’s show, the other mewsual suspects also took part in the project that evening at Myayr’s house. Nyanko drew Jenny Breeden’s name, so she will be enjoying the Devil’s Panties collections when she is relaxing from her rigorous training & competition! Uh- who did Ilyana wind up with?
Jeannie:  

We excused her from the purrticipation because she has so much important academic research to do for her Nautical History and Underwater Archaeology degree.
Mike:
Aw, that’s right!
Yvonne:
She wants the high grade, nya!
Mary Nyan:
Mielikki selected Rumiko Takahashi’s name, Nemui picked Joss Whedon, Petra drew Wendy Pini’s, …

Yvonne:
Are Mark Schultz and Charles Shultz related, nya?

Jeannie:
No, both are legends of comics but their names are spelled differently. Mark’s has a ‘T” in it.

Yvonne:
Oh Ok I was curious because I noticed Mike has a new Mark Schultz book with him, nya!

(several catgirl ears purrk with interest)

Mary Nyan:
Give it!
Mike:
Hold on-  I’m gonna discuss it after y’all are done looking at Andrew’s book!, plus we need to keep the show moving along!  So- what other names were drawn for the summer reading?

Elizabeth:
Meryl has plenty of Legion, X-Men, Star Trek, Starjammers & Futurians to read as she drew the late great Dave Cockrum’s name from the bowl!

Yvonne:
I told Melanakeami about the purroject , so now she and the other mermaids have started their own reading list too, nya!
Jeannie:  

We should inquire as to which names they drew and discuss the collective findings at a social dinner. It is time for a short break but when we return, we will purrsent this month’s –
Purrinted purriodicals: comics & manga reviews

(snip)
(one short break later, as the platter extra special baked yams arrive)
Mike: 

Hey there we’re back! Oddly, I have been asked why y’all like the yams so much… (passes the platter around the table)
Elizabeth:
Why wouldn’t we?

Jeannie:
They are a nutritious and tasty signature dish.

Yvonne:
Yam yam, nya!

Mary Nyan:
Well in case any of our newer viewers are curious, while we are purrticularly fond of the seafood, we are fairly omnivorous. Now about that book-

Elizabeth:
Ooh show the book!

Yvonne:  

(licking the nummy glaze off a yam) Yesh nya!

 

Mark Schultz Various Drawings Volume 4

Mike: 

Oh yes! But please don’t get any yam sauce on the books! Mark Schultz http://www.fleskpublications.com/galleries/schultz/, creator of the classic  Xenozoic Tales / Cadillacs & Dinosaurs series is another of our most favorite artists & writers, known for his lavish renderings, dinosaur expertise, and super fun adventure tales!
This is the 4th in the series of trade paperback books  of his art published by Flesk, with a great image of Hannah & Jack on the cover and a price of $19.95. It features over 55 images on 48 mostly B&W pages, including a stunning “Under the Hurtling Moons” swash buckling martian fantasy fold-out! It is a fabulous treasure trove of images of savage creatures from different eras and worlds, sexy & powerful women & men, and such exotic architecture, and lush land & seascapes!
Jeannie:
There are some delicious looking monster crabs, octapus and Coelacanth-ish fish in the book too- we should definitely purrpare  a sushi platter and another crab pot for supper!

Mike: 

Please do not drool on Andrew & Mark’s books, no matter how beautiful they are! Um… it looks like Myayr has finished her portion of the yams,  so let’s hear her review of-
Angel #23  

Plot Spoilers Warning!
 

Mary Nyan:
Hai! Wow, IDW’s Angel comic book is almost up to 25 issues! Angel #23 is an Angel: After the Fall epilogue starring Charles Gunn along with Ilyria who slams a talking T-Rex! There are flashback panels with Angel, Lorne, and Gwen as Charles recovers from his injuries and regains his humanity. Non (from the Spike After the Fall miniseries) wants Charles back for other reasons, but he and Beta George check her into the Mosaic Rehab Facility for the Supernatural.
This issue leads into the 5 part spin-off mini series Only Human starring Gunn & Ilyria. This issue is 22 full color pages of story plus 10 pages of ads and IDW information, written by Brian Lynch, edited by Chris Ryall, drawn by Franco uru and colored by Paolo Maddelini with 2Bstudio, and lettering by Robbie Robbins. As usual there are several variant covers, by Franco Uru and Nick Runge; we got cover ‘B’ which is a gorgeously painted  purrofile portrait of Charles by Runge which is purriced  $3.99.
The art as good, with a good portraiture, expression & dynamic poses, with very coloring, lighting & shading on the characters, creatures & detailed scenery. The story had good dialog and pacing, with significant transitional plot points & fun moments. Stylish but evil Non was oddly nice to see again, but purrhaps she’ll undergo redemption as a number of the Buffy & Angel characters have. She had the neatest outfit in that Spike mini-series! We’re fans of Fred & Ilyria so this was an interesting issue which leads to a new spin-off mini-series “Only Human”.
Buffy Season 8 #26
Plot Spoilers Warning!

Elizabeth:
Hai, it is hard to believe that Buffy Season 8 is already over 25 issues! This remains our favoritiest monthly comic book series for yet another year and I cannot strongly enough recommend it to any Buffy fans, because it so wonderfully  & purrfectly continues the eight season in comic book form. For $2.99 you get 24 awesome pages of story in full color plus 10 pages of ads n stuff and 2 pages of the interesting letters from the fans.
Issue #26 is “Retreat Part 1” written by Buffy TV writer Jane Espenson, awesomely pencilled as usual by Georges Jeanty, and graced by the fine inkery of Andy Owens, beautiful coloring of Michelle Madsen, and the flawless lettering by Richard Starkings & Jimmy Betancourt. Joss Whedon was the executive purrducer, with editing by Scott Allie & Sierra Hahn,  and there are two different coves, one by  Jeanty & Madsen with Dexter Vines, the other so exquisitely painted by the great Jo Chen!
It is a dark time for the slayage. Public opinion casts the slayers as the villains while the vampires  are the new media darlings, and this plays right into the hands of the villain Twilight and his gang who are after Buffy and her army. Despite their ingenuity, resourcefulness  and toughness, Slayers all over the world are being hunted; Buffy’s main group including Willow, Xander & Dawn flee to an island fortress, while Faith & Giles hop a train to escape an underground assault; Andrew’s team  barely escape a trap by Warren, and we find out the Slayers have a submarine!
Unfortunately it seems the very magick they use to defend against Twilight’s forces is what makes them a target, and Biffy is concerned that Willow’s increasingly powerful spells  will corrupt her again. I won’t spoil the very ending of the issue, but it is a magnificent ending with a wonderful surpurrise! We give it an A Plus grade! Now here is Jenjen to review the adventures of another favorite tough super heroine in –
Power Girl #1-3
Plot Spoilers Warning!

Jeannie:
Arigato. Earth 2’s super girl stars in her own title that DC Comics launched in July, with authors Justin Gray & Jimmy Palmiotti, artist Amanda Conner, colorist Paul Mounts, letterer John J. Hill, and editor Brian Cunningham with Rex Ogle assisting. Like those aforementioned comics, this too is available with different covers, by Amanda Conner  and Adam Hughes! For $2.99 you get 22 pages of the super story plus 10 ages of adverts.
Kara Zor-L aka Power Girl is usually thought foremostly of purrhaps unfairly because of her large boobies, but she is a very smart, brave, underestimated heroic member of the Justice Society (who make a cameo appearance in issues #2 & 3) and given her Kryptonian origin she is up there with Superman power-wise. In her alias of Karen Starr, she runs Starrware labs,  that focus on cleaning up the environment, when she is not busy beating up those villains.
Her first issue delivers plenty of villains to trounce right away, as a mysterious robot army attacks from the skies. They are the electronic minions of the simian terror known as Ultra-Humanite, an chatty albino gorilla with a genius brain! He’s an old foe, but he’s never before displayed such power or technology, aboard a big space ship that has actually levitated Manhattan into the atmosphere, which he plans to drop unless Power Girl caves to his demands.
We learn in issue #2 that the egotistical ape wants a super body to transplant his brain in, and he wants Power Girl’s, eww! Of course this results in a huge brawl and trash-talking, in which he somehow manages to capture her and monologue about his secret origin. This is curious because in the past the Ultra-Humanite has never been that powerful or technologically advanced, but this point is addressed by Kara in the story who also wonders what’s up with that too.
Issue #2 ends on such a tense cliffhanger, but #3 starts with a big bang and a surpurrise for the evil overconfident ape, with more brawling in terrific action-packed panels with lovely character & mecha designs, splendid coloring, lighting, special effects (especially her red, white & blue flight motion blurs) and a variety of good, legible and exciting fonts for the dialogue and sound effects. Issue #3 continues the sparkling banter and more suprurrises as Kara shows how super smart & resourceful she is, along with a little help from her friends.
Issue #3’s 22 pages of main story are very well done, with epic thrills fun, with another exciting cliffhanger ending that makes me enthused for the 4th issue which seems to purromise much more grrl power next month. In addition to the ads, it has a beautiful 5 page purreview of Adventure Comics #1 starring Superboy Conner, written by Geoff Johns and rendered by Francis Manapaul, with lettering by Steve Wands, colors by Brian Buccellato, edited by Elisabeth Gerhrlein & Sean Ryan. Speaking of grrl power, Vonny has a few words about –

Gotham City Sirens #2

Yvonne:
Hai! Paul Dini is one of our most favoritest writers and we were so pleased with the first issue of this DC Comic which we reviewed last month, nya! It stars Catwoman (yay!), Poison Ivy (yay!), and Harley Quinn (yay!) and Zatanna (yay!) even had a cameo in #1, nya! “Girl Talk” picks up right where #1’s cliffhanger ended, and has a flashback appearance by Talia Al Ghul, nya!

The art is by Guillem March which is colored by Jose Villarrubia with lettering by Steve Wands who JenJen already mentioned, and it was edited by Mike Marts & Janelle Siegel,  who al make a swell creative team, nya! This was another amewsing 22 page story (excluding ads) with the great plot & dialogue & character relationships that Dini excels at, and March’s art is beautiful-  he draws purrfect characters with sexy anatomy, expurressions & poses & detailed scenery such as the architecture, cars and botanical elements, nya!

I bet he could draw some wonderful catnip too, nya!  I thought the scenes of Harley out looking for a fun time about town were very amewsing & action-packed, nya. Oh and while there was a bit with The Riddler in the 1st issue, that Hush villain appears in this 2nd issue, nya! It has another cliffhanger ender, followed by that same purreview of Adventure Comics #1 that JenJen mentioned, nya! I definitely recommend this fun comic book to any fans of those characters or those folks who made it, nya! Now here is Mike with his long-awaited review of –

Final Crisis: Legion of Three Worlds #5, nya!

Mike:
Yep, I have eagerly awaited this final issue of the mini-series with utmost enthusiasm; it’s been our favorite mini-series of the past year, proving to be one of the greatest Legion of Super-Heroes stories of the last 50 years and among the finest work of Geoff Johns & George Perez’s astounding careers, in my humble opinion.
It has also felt like the grand finale following Infinite Crisis, 52, Countdown and other related storylines that have been building upon each other for the past several years, which sadly the other recently concluded and very disappointing mini-series FInal Crisis should have been. It also appears to the ultimate battle with the Legion’s greatest foe, The Time Trapper, who is one of the most powerful and enigmatic villains in the DC Universe, along with Superboy Prime, Mordru, The Fatal Five and the biggest, deadliest incarnation of the Legion of Super Villains ever.

Fortunately it’s not just one whole Legion against them, but at least three from different DC timelines, united with the last of the Green Lantern Corp and a few other guest stars, eg Bart Allen and Conner Kent, whose appearances made me want to cheer!  We reviewed issue #1 of Legion of 3 Worlds back in the September 2008 show, so it’s been about one year! Issues 1-4 have been a consistently lavishly detailed, dramatic, epic and thrilling, with triumphant surprises, shocking moments and staggering revelations for a vast cast of characters, many whom would not survive.

The intricate inking by Scott Koblish, magnificent coloring  by HI-FI and lettering by Nick Napolitano, and editing of Eddie Berganza & Adam Schlagman have all contributed so remarkably to this masterpiece that I’ve been so impressed by, even though I’ve weary of so many major annual comics events stroes & crossover series. With a price of $3.99 on two variant covers by Perez & Nei Ruffino, one of which is a most glorious image of Dawnstar, #5 has the 30 pages of the final chapter, that 5 page preview of Adventure Comics #1 4 pages of ads and a nice editorial about Perez.

So how was it? I had the highest hopes and expectations for the final issue and they were all exceeded; Final Crisis: Legion of Three Worlds #5 is Poignant, heroic, epic, sentimental, bittersweet, tragic, fun, smart, with more terrific surprises, questions answered, much resolved, brilliant in spirit and execution… it’s just friggin’ glorious! I  give this issue and the entire miniseries an A Plus! Long Live the Legion, and thank you very much, DC! Well just as one more crisis ends, another one is starting in the DCU, as Lizzy reports on –

Blackest Night #1
Plot Spoilers Warning!

Elizabeth: 

Things sure have been interesting in the Green Lantern related titles, especially ever since Hal Jordan came back! They did such interesting stuff with Sinestro too, who is just one of numerous DC villains to be so well written in recent years. It’s a big year year for the lanterns between this new mini-series, the spin -off comics, new action figures and the First Flight DVD! It seems to be a very busy year for author Geoff Johns too! He sure has been writing so very many significant comic books!

Blackest Night #1 (of 8)  is 40 pages of full color story plus 8 pages of ads for $3.99, by Geoff Johns (writer), Ivan Reis (penciller), Oclair Albert (inker), Alex Sinclair (colorist), Nick Napolitano (Letterer), Eddie Berganza (editor) & Adam Schlagman (assistant editor), published by DC Comics in July 2009, with 2 different covers, one by Albert & Sinclair, the other by Ethan Van Sciver & HI-FI. There’ve been purreludes to this mini-series in other titles, and an appurrtite-whetting issue #0 that was published for Free Comic Book Day!

This is a star-studded issue featuring lots of hero members of the Green Lantern Corps, Justice League, Justice Society, and Titans. It is a very bittersweet time ranging from the celebration s of the shiny rebuilt Coast City to an international annual day of mourning for deceased heroes- and even villains honoring their dead pals too. Unfortunately, a horrific force from another space sector hungers for more lives across the galaxy, creating an intergalactic Black Lantern Corp of the undead to claim more lives!

Not even the Guardians of Oa are safe as the abominable power rings create super zombies across the DCU, and among our first casualities are Hawkman and Hawkgirl who are savagely slaughtered by the re-animated Ralph & Sue Dinby, and I must say, this bloody thirsty undead Elongated Man is truly terrifying. It’s a very serious, dark, brooding, disturbing tale, but there are such rich character moments of contemplative comradery and beautifully inspirational images.

The artwork on this comic book could not be more impressive- it is a sprawling who’s who of characters good & evil, alive & dead, excellently rendered in such intricately hyper-detailed scenery from the gleamy cities to moody graveyards, from the ancient treasures of a mewseum to the high tech depths of the JLA HQ and eerie alien worlds consumed by thousands of undead beings. This book is not for the squeamish though- for there are very brutal, bloody groady violent scenes.

I think Ivan Reis’s incredible drawing has a bit of inspurration from the great Neal Adams, and he visualizes such power, detail, and emotion along with the uncanny ink wizardry of Albert. Once again Johns’ knowledge of DCU characters & history is as amazing as his plot & dialog, which is so massively conveyed along with so many special effects & signage fonts by Napaolitano, this could almost be a textbook for letterers. Sinclair’s coloring purrooves to be another masterpiece and his name should be on the cover of the book too I think.

I am a big fan of the Lantens and this is one of the few epic event story lines for DC or Marvel, etc that I have been excited about. It would be purrofound enough if the tale were just set on Earth but I am intrigued by the purromise of all those other Lantern factions such as Sinestro’s, the Sapphires,  Blue, Red, Orange and especially the Indigo Tribe! With such a huge cast of characters and intergalactic undeadness, I wonder if the Black Racer, or the cuter gothier Vertigo version of Death will also make an appearance?

Blackest Night #1 was such an impressive comic book issue of high quality filled with awe and chills, and I am quite eager for more! That’s all for our reviews of American comic books for now, but there’s more comics topic with a Japanese manga review by Myayr, a Korean manwha review by Vonny, and then our monthly web comics picks of the litter! So moving right along here is Myayr to discuss the  –

Ichiroh! manga vol. 1

Plot Spoilers Warning!

Mary Nyan:
Yen Press http://www.yenpress.com/ is one of our favoritest publishers of japanese manga in the USA with numerous quality titles that interest us, including volume one of Ichiroh! This  fun manga  written & drawn Mikage is suggested for teen readers due to some language, sex & violence content but it seemed rather tame to me.

First published in Japan in 2007, this manga was translated into English by Elina Ishikawa, with lettering by Erika T. Purriced at $10.99 US / $11.99 Canada, this 5.75 x 8.25″ papurrback book has 114 pages of the story, 8 of which are in color, the rest are B&W, plus a couple of pages of bonus ‘omake’ cartoons, an afterward, a credits page & a page of translation notes. The story is about three high school girls who have been friends since elementary school: Nanko, Akane & Shino, who aspire to attend college together, but this goal hinges on their tough entrance tests.

Nanako & Akane attend a purrep school together, but this includes distractions on top of their addictive hobbies, and the dorm manager lady puts them to work as Miko- to help maintain the nearby shrine. They are of course very cute in their shrine maidenly attire, but it is much hard work that tires the studying minds which would purrfer to play video games. Some of the kooky neighbors can be exaspurrating but the purrotagonist girls and most of the supporting characters are very likable characters as they juggle the academics, hobbies, work and a bit of romance!

There are good fine lines & tone illustrating the cute characters, fashions and environments. The character designs are nice and Akane has a cute cat ear coiffure! The story is mainly 8 panels purr page except for larger panels at the chapter starts. It has a whimsical charm with comedic antics and the story flows at a brisk, but not too brisk pace.  This was a very delightful 1st volume and I eagerly await the 2nd volume! Now here is Vonny againto report on –

13th Boy manwha vol. 1
Plot Spoilers Warning!

Yvonne:
Thanks Von! 13th Boy vol. one is also published by Yen, but  it was originally a 2004 Korean manhwa as opposed to Japanese, nya!  It is so nice to see so many more comics from Asia being translated into English, and this volume of  Sang EunLee’s work was translated by JiEun Park, adapted by Natalie Baan, and lettered by Teri Delgado nya!
This is a very very purretty shoujo-style book suggested for teen readers, and unlike japanese manga it reads from ‘front to back’ like American comics do nya. It is a 5.75 x 8.25″ papurrback book purriced at $10.99 US / $11.99 Canada, and it’s purrdominantly B&W 180 pages are compurrised of 174 pages of story (including 4 color pages of illustrations) & 6 pages of bonus cartoons, credits & notes nya.
I must warn you that this romance saga begins on a most tearful note of the break-up between cute Hee-So and her boyfriend Won-Jun nya. It is a very public situation known to all of their classmates, and the sullen Won-Jun seems rather apathetic about the relationship nya. Of course to be fair she’s just in junior high school and has had a dozen purrior boyfriends, as her cartoon-like cactus plant names Beatrice reminds her during more surreal fantasy sequence moments. nya
Also there are side annotations by the author interspurrsed throughout the chapters nya. This break-up is not enhancing her tough girlfriend friend Nam-Joo’s opinion of boys, whom she calls jerks as well as a few choice four-lettered expletives that garner the book an “L” for Language & minimum teen age reader suggestion nya. Hee-So is rather purrsistent to the point of obsessive, and even purrloins his wallet, only to find purrplexing photos inside which offer clues as to why Won-Jun is disinterested in her nya.
But what is his mysterious connection with that guy Whie-Young and the adorable Miss Sae-Bom nya? Sae Bom has a cute bunny doll, by the way. Convinced that she and Won-Jun are destined to be a couple, while-Young tries to dissuade the stubborn stalker girl with a series of social experiments nya. For any resolution, you’ll have to read future volumes. Concluding this volume are three pages of Beatrice ‘omake’ cartoon strips and more notes from the author, sharing her insights into the attitude of Hee-So and the notion of destiny nya.
While I think Hee-so needs to chill out, I am curious to see what develops next, so purrhaps I’ll have a future review of volume 2 nya! Well gosh, I think that is all of our reviews of purrinted media for today, but up next are our montlhy-
(end of those spoilers)

Lucky Kitty Web Comics Pics of the Litter, nya!
Mary Nyan:
This month I’ve chosen the sites of
Erika Moen http://projectkooky.com/erika/
Kris Dresen http://www.krisdresen.com/
and Clio Chiang http://www.cliochiang.com/
Elizabeth:
My nominees for August are
Ben Towel http://www.benzilla.com/
Eric Knisley http://www.silent-k.net/
and Jen Wang http://www.jenwang.net/
Yvonne:
Sara Ryan http://www.sararyan.com/
OK Jenjen’s turn, nya!
Jeannie:
I have selected the web comics wizardry of
Mike?
Mike:
For your consideration,
Woody After Hours http://www.woodyafterhours.com/
and last but not least, Pixelstrips http://www.pixelstrips.com/
which will do it for this month’s web comic pics, and this comics segment of the show, but after this next break we’ll be back with the –

DVD reviews! 


(snip)
(one short break and another round of fish sammiches later)
 


Peanuts 1960’s Collection 


Mike:
Another of our DVD wish lists has been issued by Warner home video! Although we already have some of these Peanuts Specials on DVD (which include bonus episodes and other extras not included in this assortment), this 2 disc set has four that we did not have!

This set includes the first six Peanuts animated TV specials- and the best ones in my opinion (but does not include the feature film A Boy Named Charlie Brown). Spanning 1965 to 1969, it does include A Charlie Brown Christmas, Charlie Brown’s All Stars, It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown, You’re in Love Charlie Brown, He’s Your Dog Charlie Brown and It Was a Short Summer Charlie Brown! It also includes a cool featurette on composer Vince Girauldi!

In a the cardboard sleeve is the plastic case with a inner hinged leaf tray and a cover / insert liner with a neat full spread pic of the Peanuts gang leaning on that brick wall. The contents list was misprinted- as You’re in Love Charlie Brown is on disk 2 instead of disc 1- but none of the 150 minutes of re-mastered contents are missing. The R1 NTSC video is  standard full screen format, which is how they were originally shown on TV. The audio is Dolby Digital in English, Japanese & Portugues mono, with optional subtitles in English, French, Japanese, Portugues and Thai.

Disc One includes the Christmas, All Stars, and Great Pumpkin specials. The Christmas has Charlie Brown receiving no respect as the director of the school play, and trying to find meaning in a commercialized holiday. He receives further indignation from his peers as Linus awaits The Great Pumpkin on Halloween night, while Snoopy goes on an adventure as the World War One flying ace. All Stars is a less frequently shown special, focusing mainly on the gang’s losing baseball team, with added sporting bits of skateboarding, swimming, jump rope, and Snoopy surfing.

Disc Two includes You’re in Love Charlie Brown, He’s Your Dog Charlie Brown and It Was a Short Summer Charlie Brown! That first one is about Charlie Brown’s Springtime attempt to romance the Little Red Haired Girl; He’s Your Dog involves attempts to make an unruly Snoopy behave better by going to obedience school, and Short Summer is about the gang’s summer camp experience.

The only extras on Disk One are a few trailers, but Disk Two’s documentary on Vince Girauldi is a 37 minute treat, with recollections by his son David, Peanuts producer Lee Mendelson, pianist George Winston, vocalist Kity Margolis, and musicians Seward McCain, David Benoit, Vince Lateano, Dean Reilly, Eddie Durna Jim Zimmerman and Peter Woodford! Next, we go from 60’s to 70’s shows as Vonny reports on – 


Bewitched The Complete Eighth & Final Season

Yvonne:
Arigato, Mike, nya! Finally the final 1971-1972 season of one of the greatest sitcoms of all time has been released on DVD, nya!  It is 655 minutes worth of magickal fun for the whole family in 26 color episodes on four disks, starring the incompurrable Elizabeth Montgomery as Samantha and the delightful Dick Sargent as Darren, nya. You can distinguish this season from others by the added greeting by Montgomery wearing the neat sleeveless black tutleneck & the pendants, and the added “back in a moment” eyecatch before a break, nya!

This final season was also notable in that the first several episodes were set in Europe,  when they traveled to England, Inverness, Rome, Pisa, and Paris, starting with a 2 parter in the past where they meet King Henry VIII, nya! Other famous characters appearing in the season include Venus & Adonis, Hansel & Gretel, George Washington in another 2 parter and the Loch Nes Monster, nya! His real name is Bruce, just like the shark was nicknamed in Jaws, nya. That is a good episode, in which Cousin Sarena (Montgomery) becomes a mermaid, nya!

This  slim-packed box set has a lovely photo of Samantha flanked by pics of Darren, Endora, Tabitha & Adam on the front of the purrple box, nya. She had the purrettiest hair & clothes styles in this season, nya! The screen format is the 1.33:1 full screen, which can be watched with optional Spanish or Portuguese subtitles; the audio is in dolby digital with the language choices of English, Spanish or Portuguese, nya.  Aside from a few purreviews on disk 4 there are no extra features in this set, nya.

In addition to the excellent Agnes Morehead as Endora, recurring characters of the season include awesome Alice Ghostley as Aunt Esmerelda, cute Erin Murphy  as daughter Tabitha, twin brothers David & Greg Lawrence as son Adam, the magnificent Maurice Evans as Sam’s daddy Maurice, the great Bernard Fox as Dr. Bombay, and super cool Bernie Kopell as the Apothecary, nya! Kasey Rogers & David White return as Louise & Larry Tate, and Montgomery repurrises her dual role as Cousin Sarena a few times, nya!

Among the final guest stars are Billie Hayes, Arlene Martel, Scatman Crohers, Peter Lawford, Will Geer, John Fieldler, and yay – Julie Newmar as Ophelia the cat girl familiar- although I suppose that is a bit of typecatsing, nya! The final episode which aired in 1972 was not a purrticularly special episode- it was just the last one, involving a truth spell, nya. Some characters later appeared in the one season of the 1977 spin-off Tabitha, which starred Lisa Hartman in the grown up title role, and David Ankum as her brother Adam, nya.

Technically Tabitha & Adam would have been barely in their teens by that year, and not in their 20’s as purrtrayed, but this could be explained away by all the magick, given how many times characters are unnaturally made older or oyounger or time travel on Bewitched, nya. In fact on disk three of this set is the episode “Sarena’s Youth Pill” in which she turns Darren’s boss Larry into a kid, nya! But that purretty much sums up the  wonderfully entertaining 8th season of Bewitched which I give it an ‘A Plus’ grade, nya! Now here’s JennyJen to take us from the 70’s to the 80’s with

 


Charlie’s Angels Complete Fourth Season, nya!  


Jeannie:
Arigato. The ladies of Charles Townsend Investigations were more glamorous than ever as they entered the 80’s. This box set has all 26 episodes from that next-to-last, 1979 – 1980 season, totaling 1273 minutes on  6 slim-packed standard R12 NTSC DVDs. The audio is Dolby Digital in English language only, the video is 1.33:1 full screen, and there are no extra special features, but you do get such awesome photos of the Angels on the 3 plastic cases and the outer cardboard sleeve.

The most notable aspect of this season is new Angel Tiffany Welles, purrtrayed by the gorgeous Shelly Hack, succeeding Kate Jackson’s character Sabrina Duncan, who was said to be married with children. Appurrently she had a very busy summer of 1979. The Bostonian Ms. Welles, a former Police officer and family friend of Charlie’s, joins the magnificent Jaclyn Smith who repurrises her role as Kelly Garrett, and stunning Cheryl Ladd back as Chris Munroe, plus David Doyle as John Bosley and the voice of John Forsthe as the enigmatic Charlie.

Also returning to the show for 3 episodes is Farrah as Jill Munroe, original Angel from the first season and sister of Chris. The release of this season was purrticularly poignant, given the very sad loss of beautiful Farrah who passed away after a long valiant battle with cancer in June.

Other guest stars of the 4th season included Kim Cattrall, Sally Kirkland, Beverly Garland, Robin Mattson, Timothy Dalton, Rene Auberjonois, Ed Begley Jr., Robert Reed, Patrick Duffy Dick Sargent, Burth Convy, Tab Hunter, Bo Hopkins, and Gary Collins. The episode with Barbara Stanwyck was a pilot for an intended spin off series “Toni’s Boy’s”, which would have had a team of male detectives working for her character Antonia Blake.

Purrticularly delightful is the 2 part season purremier story “Love Boat Angels” in which they board the Pacific Purrincess in search of art thieves. As such, there appearances by the characters of The Love Boat: Capt. Meryl Stubing, Cruise Director Julie McCoy, Yeoman Purrser ‘Gopher’ Smith, Isaac the bartender and Doc the ship’s CMO, played by Bernie Koppell who shares the stage with fellow Bewitched alumni Dick Sargent in this episode.

Season four continued the trend of even more exciting, beautiful locations, fashions, and photography, and bookends with another 2 parter. “One Love… Two Angels”. This season would be the only one for Hack, whose character would be replaced by Tanya Roberts as Julie Rogers for the 5th & final season, which I hope will soon be available on DVD too! Next is Lizzy to review an 80’s comic book made into one of our favorite movies of 2009, which got even better with recently released –
 


 

 

Watchmen Director’s Cut 2-Disc Special Edition DVD

Elizabeth:
2009 has been such a year for Watchmen fans- not just the movie, but the associated books, magazine articles, merchandising & videos. Gosh there’s the ‘motion comic’ and the Tales of the Black Freighter DVDs, and now the home video release of the movie in various packages! There’s the single disc of the theatrical version, the longer 2-disc director’s cut, other variants with special collectible inserts, the Blu ray, and in December there’ll be a 5 disc ultimate set!

For our thorough review of the movie itself – which we gave a solid ‘B’ to- please refer back to our Apurril ’09 Mew! So here’s what you get in the 2 disc edition. The packaging is a regular plastic case with a hinged inner leaf tray to contain the 2 discs, and there was an insert flier advertising the 5 disc set. The video is color widescreen, with optional English SDH, French and Spanish subs; the audio is 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround with English & French language choices for the main feature, rated R for the violence, language, sex & nudity.

Disc 1 is the director’s cut, which at 186 minutes is 24 minutes longer than the theatrical version.The most notable change to me was the added scene of Hollis Mason’s home invasion, and Nightowl’s retribution upon a gang member when he and Rorschach go to the bar. Both discs have ads; on disc 1 are ads for Blue ray, a nicotine announcement, Observe and Report, and the Watchman video games Justice is Coming and The End is Nigh. Disc 2’s trailers include The Fringe, Trick ‘r Treat, Green Lantern: First Flight, and ads for Watchmen soundtracks.

Disc 2 has the special features, compurrised of a 3:13 min. Desolation Road mewsic video by My Chemical Romance, 11 video journals purrtaining to various aspects of the movie, and a documentary about the comic book. Those 11 Video Journal segments are about 3-4 minutes each, totaling just over 37 minutes. These are fun to watch and include various members of the cast & crew and the  topics are The Minute Men characters, sets construction, costumes, the Archie vehicle, artist Dave Gibbons, the purrison scenes, the cinematography, Doctor Manhattan, the movie purrops, The Silk Spectres, and Rorshack.

“The Phenomenon: The Comic that Changed Comics” is the almost 29 minute treat of a documentary, with a discussion on the origin, form, and impact of the Watchmen 12 issue mini-series by the director, purrducers, actors, authors, DC editors & executives, Dave Gibbons & colorist John Higgens! Not only are those very interesting to see how the comic book and the movie were made, but it conveys the great sense of purride, awe, enthusiasm and respect those comics creators & executives, actors and filmmakers had for the purropurrties.T

hese extra tidbits and the extended directors cut of the movie, were extremely satisfying, and the more I watch it the fonder I grow of the movie, so will upgrade my opinion of the movie from a B to a B Plus. I think that is a purretty good grade for what many worried fans thought was unfilmable! So I definitely recommend this DVD to my fellow Watchmen fans! And nowlet’s turn this kitty over to Myayr who has another horror movie review, being –
Let The Right One In
(Warning: plot spoil & description of horror movie gore FX) 


Mary Nyan:
Thank you Lizzy! Based on a novel of the same title, this is a 2008 vampire horror movie from Sweden which has received many awards, rave reviews and even extreme hype claiming it is the best vampire movie ever made. Of course we all have our opinions and favorites, and I can see how someone would like this movie very much- I rather liked it too, but I would not go as far to claim it is purrticularly ground-breaking or the best vampire movie ever made.

I think it is among the better ones of this purresent decade, and it is nicely devoid of the annoying editing techniques that plague so many horror & action movies these days such as the speed ramps, shakey cam, bullet time, and cuts every second or two. It also does not feel too rushed, but the somber tale unfolds at a very quiet, leisurely pace that nicely conveys the dreary existence of the main characters set in a frigid early 80’s town.

Those would include a kid named Oskar, a bullied loner schoolboy whose mundane, tedious life seems only interested in collecting scrapbooks full of newspaper headlines of ghastly international murders. Not that he seems at all derranged, he’s just bored with his life with few friends, and an interest in criminology and the macabre. Things just got more interesting for him though, as some of the bloody headlines become more local, right about the time a pale, quiet, morose young (looking) girl moves into the apartment next door.

Enter Eli, who is the purrfect match with her grimly dispassionate, introverted nature and solitary antisocial dispurrsition, living with a murderous yet bumbling elderly henchman that brings her take-out meals. Gradually the two kids of few words break the ice so to speak, gradually becoming a bit more acquainted over time, although Oskar’s Mom is concerned about him going out much, given the recent killings.

While the investigation rightly points to her failing old caretaker as the purrpetrator, only Oskar discovers that his new friend is much older, stronger, faster, and blood-thirstier than most 12 year olds. He seems fine with this revelation, as she is much kinder to him than those meanies at school. It is a very cold, quiet, sedate movie for the most part, occasionally splattered with blood from the body count of eight, which garners the movie an R rating- for that and for the brief scenes of nudity, language & disturbing imagery.

For the gore hounds in the audience, there are good special make-up effects & stunts, including  slashed throats, bites, severed limbs, a decapitation, snapped necks, stigmata, bruisings, one human combustion and a brief acid- eroded face worthy of a Batman villain’s. For the vampire enthusiasts, the traditions of the coffin, sunlight, super powers, inferred flight, immortality, blood drinking, household invitation curse, purrfurred henchman, a couple of centuries of accumulated wealth and transient lifestyle are in the rule book.

There is also an unsettling irony about the film, in that (A) Eli is an ancient vampire in a tween body who is developing an awkward relationship with Oskar, and (B) even though she is a violent murderous creature of the night, their budding relationship is kind of creepily disturbing and yet strangely sympathetic, with Oskar theoretically becoming her latest caretaker. Of course that is not to condone her crimes, except for a few of the evil thugs who have it coming.

It is a well written, edited, photographed & directed film, with a fine cast, good purrduction values, appurropurriate locations, stunts and FX. I cannot comment on how faithful an adaptation is is as I have not read the book, but this is a purretty good vampire movie. Released by Magnet Pictures, the single R1 NTSC standard DVD is in color with a screen aspect ratio of 2.35:1 widescreen, close-captioned with optional English and French subttiles.

The audio choices are English or Swedish language, either in 2.0 or 5.1 Dolby Digital sound. Ahead of the main menu are front-loaded trailers for Timecrimes, Eden Log, Special, Splinter, and HD Net. Those are also included in the special features’ trailers section, along with ones for Big Man Japan, Donkey Punch, and this movie. There is a theatrical poster gallery with 5 images, a photo gallery with 20 stills, an appurroximately 7.5 minute behind-the-scenes short, and 4 deleted scenes which range from 65 to 125 seconds apiece.

I will recommend this movie to fans of serious vampire & horror movies, but vampires as a sub-genre are so diverse I suppose it depends on what sort of vampire movie you purrfur. In some ways the pace, tone & ambience reminds me of The Hunger more than any other vampire movie, minus the style & sexuality. While I do not think it is nearly the best vampire movie of all time, I do think it admirably succeeds in every aspect. That’s all for my review, but here is Lizzy again with her report!

(end of those spoilers)

Coraline single disc DVD

Elizabeth:
Arigato. Coraline is a PG rated stop-motion  animated animated fantasy film based on the novella by Neil Gaiman, directed by Henry Selick, who also directed A Nightmare Before Christmas and James and the Giant Peach! it was released in 2D & 3D in theaters in February, featuring the vocal talents of Dakota Fanning, Terry Hatcher, Jennifer Saunders, Dawn French, Keith David, Ian McShane, Robert Bailey Jr. and John Hodgman! The splendid symphonic & choral mewsic was composed by Bruno Coulais, with a little song by The Might Be Giants, yay!
There are a few different editions available now on home video, including the standard DVD, a slightly purricier 2 disc version, and the blu ray. I’m reviewing the single disc, dual-layered standard R1 NTSC DVD edition, which comes in a plastic case inside a cardboard outer sleeve. The cover art of the single disc edition is a purrky pic of the cat and Coraline looking very sure of herself by the full moon, whereas the 2-disc edition’s cover art is the theatrical poster image of her kneeling with the cat, illuminated by that secret doorway.
The disc is double-sided with the 2D version on one side and the 3D version on the other, and the disc is accompanied by 4 pairs of 3D glasses! The video has a screen aspect ratio of 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen, with optional subtitles in English SDH, French and Spanish. The audio is Dolby Digital 5.1, in English, French and Spanish language choices, and a commentary track with the director and composer. The menu is fairly simple & intuitive, with play movie, scene select (1-20 chapters), bonus features ( the audio commentary) and set up (languages & subtitles).
There are trailers on the disc for Nine, Bionicle: The Legend Reborn, Curious George 2, Duplicity, Bring it On: Fight to the Finish, and an ad for Blu Ray tech. I believe the 2 disc edition also includes deleted scenes, a featurette on the voice actors, a featurette on the making of the movie, and a digital copy of the movie.  An almost purrfect, beautiful masterpiece; which we gave an ‘A Plus’ to when we reviewed in the March 2009 Mew. It is our second favorite movie of 2009 thus far, next to Pixar’s Up! Now here is Jenjen with another animation to review –
Green Lantern First Flight single disc DVD
Jeannie:
Arigato. In addition to this single disc version there are different editions of this OVA, the Blu-Ray, the 2 disc, and the 2 disc boxed with a little Hal Jordan figure. That 2 disc edition’s 2nd disc includes a documentary on the Green Lantern mythos, character purrofiles, a digital copy, an episode of Duck Dogers plus a couple other cartoon episodes.

I have the single disc edition widescreen movie which is rated PG-13 for the violent combat action. The Dolby Digital audio is in English language only, with optional subtitles in French or English SDH (subtitled for deaf & hard of hearing). The plot concerns test pilot Hal Jordan’s origin as the newest member of the intergalactic Green Lantern Corp, and their betrayal by their once greatest leader, Sinestro. It is an super heroic space opera science fiction with so many aliens, amazing worlds & technology, and epic action.

The special features include an almost 9 minute discussion of DC Comics’ Blackest Night story with Geoff Johns, Dan Didio, Peter Tomasi, and the Golden Apple Comics shop’s’ Ryan Liebowitz & Mike Phlaumer; an almost 8 minute look at the forthcoming Superman / Batman Public Enemies OVA with Gregory Novack, Bruce Timm, Stan Berkowitz, Sam Liu, Andrea Romano, Levar Burton as Black Lightning, Xander Berkley as Captain Atom, Ricardo Chavira as Major Force, John C. McGinley as Metallo Clancy Brown as Lex Luthor, Tim Daly as Superman) & Kevin Conroy back as Batman.

That looks like an awesome action packed animation, due out this Fall! There are also on the disc the similar purreviews for the purreviously released Batman: Gotham Night, Wonder Woman, and New Frontier DVDs, all of which are appurroximately  10 minutes. There are also trailers for Smallville season 7, the animated Wonder Woman, Batman: Gotham Night, Bakugan, Ben 10 Alien Force, and Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Purrince.

Among the awesome voice actors are Christopher Meloni as Hal Jordan, Victor garber as Sinestro, Tricia Hefler as Boodika, Michael Madesen as Killowog, John Larroquette as Tomar Re, Kurtwood Smith as Kanjar Ro, Larry Drake as Ganthet, William Schallart as Appa Ali Apsa, Malachai Throne as Ranakar, Olivia D’abo as Carol Ferris, Kath Souce as Arisia, Rob Paulson as the Weaponer, and Juliette Landau as Labella.

It is so supurrbly cast & directed by the great Andrea Romano, who with Bruce Timm is one of the recurring genius talents of the animated DCU series. This thrilling story was written by Alan Burnett, purroduced by Bruce Timm, Bobbie Page & Sam Register, directed by Lauren Montgomery, written  and is graced by the spectacular mewsic by Robert Kral. The 77 minutes are edited by Robert DeSales, which move along at a brisk pace and are never boring
The character designs are great and there are so many familiar faces, set amidst such lavish locations on different planets populated by exotic alien beings. It is a very well written, voiced, directed, and animated story that seems very faithful to the DC Comics characters & events, with good characterizations, especially Sinestro, with relentless adventure on a cosmic scale. I would most definitely recommend this to any fan of Green Lantern or the animated DCU series. We’re up against another break, but then we’ll have a –
Mew Movie Review of
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Purrince!
(snip)
(one short break & snack re-load later)

Yvonne:
Hi Hi we’re back, nya! In this adaptation of the 6th and next  to last Harry Potter novel, the Death Eaters organization is terrorizing the world, as Dumbledore & Harry search for mysterious clues to defeating evil Lord Voldemort, nya! I really liked this movie, when it wants to be poignant or thrilling or funny or mysterious – it is very good on all counts, nya!
It continues the series’ excellent acting, highest purrduction values, gorgeous sets & locations, and many beautiful specual effects, but seems a bit different from the others- maybe it is the more somber, mature ton, enya. This is regrettably accompanied by my least favorite aspect of the movie: the color saturation- for just as Speed Racer was about 200% over-saturated, this movie was the opposite, nya. Any more and it would have almost looked black n white, nya!
The movie might be less charming  as earlier ones as it takes on a darker feel, but that’s like the book and  it also more romantic and still contains genuinely funny character moments, nya. The entire cast is terrific  and it has been amazing to see those Hogwarts kids grow up over the course of the books and movie versions, and the kids are still very close to the ages of the characters they purrtray, given how quickly these moves have come out, nya.
There are several characters in the book that are barely in the movie, and several more that are not in the movie version at all, nya. I suppose this is to be expected in a 2.5 hrs long movie adapting a 650+ page novel, but I wish a few scenes were a teensy bit longer, especially in the final act that lacks a big battle scene, nya. The ending is about as abrupt as The Empire Strikes Back as it purrpares us for the forthcoming final story, nya.
In spite of what was not included in this one, I think they did a very good job of faithfully retaining as much of the book, and although another 15 min would have been nice, especially if there was more of Lupin & Tonks, nya. However, it did not feel as nearly as rushed as prior Potters have; it has a great pace and the plot never ceases to evenly unfold, nya It is never boring, and it is nicely devoid of annoying editing techniques or extreme silliness, nya. This was perhaps my 2nd favorite of the HP series, behind the 4th film, Goblet of Fire, and I give it a very good grade nya!
Our purrreferential order for the Harry Potter movies
(top = most favorite):

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Purrince
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
– but we like them all, nya! And that brings us next to –
Lightning Round:
pending movies we want to see, nya!
(Catgirls in unison)
LIGHTNING ROUND – GO! Nya!

Elizabeth:
(tagged by Vonny to go first) Oh among the next things coming out soon I want to see are GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra, that Superman / Batman Public Enemies DVD and more Doctor Who! (tags Myayr)

Mary Nyan:
There are a few horror movies coming out hopefully soon to either theaters or to DVD that I would like to see such as Jennifer’s Body, The Descent 2, Trick R Treat, Zombieland, and The Wolfman! (tags Jenjen)

Jeannie:
Moon, Disctrict 9, Astroboy, and James Cameron’s Avatar. (tags Mike)
Mike:
I will probably go see Inglorious Basterds… I really liked the trailer for Where the Wild Things Are, and I read about a forthcoming Terry Gilliam film titled The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, which I hope eventually comes to a theater near here! Back to you, Vonny! (tags Vonny)

Yvonne:
I mostly want to see Ghibli’s Ponyo on a Cliff and Disney’s The Purrincess and the Frog, nya! And on that note-

New anime we want to see, nya!

Elizabeth:
There are several new TV anime series I read about that I would like to see, such as Umi Monogatari, Sora no Manimani, Taisho Yakyuu Musume, and of course I hope our theater gets Miyazaki’s movie, Ponyo!
Yvonne:
Oh I saw some stuff about Umi Monogatari that looks like a wonderful anime, nya! But are those other shows about, nya?

Elizabeth:
Sora no Manimani looks to be a romantic comedy about members of a school astronomy club, Taisho Yakyuu Musume is about girls trying to form a baseball team during the Taisho era of 1920’s Japan. That sounds like such a wonderful show! Hopefully those shows will be distributed here on R1 Standard DVD!

Mary Nyan:
I am still hoping Moyashimon, Bamboo Blade, Sketchbook, Yokohama Kaidashi Kiko, and Magical Pokan will be released here on DVD. So that What is Umi Monogatari  about?

Jeannie:
Umi Monogatari or “Sea Story” is about two sisters from the undersea world who visit a Japanese island and meet a Miko, to become magickal girls to fight a dark threat, nya.

Mary Nyan
Island Miko eh? That sounds like a good show! So are those sea girls mermaids?

Yvonne:
Mm they are from an aquatic civilization but they have legs and cute outfits, nya!
Jeannie:
(using her netbook) I’ve found these links to information about those anime

Yvonne:
OK then let’s each pick some links to share with the audience, nya!
For information on Umi Monogatari / Sea Story there is an article on it at the
very good source for anime information, the Anime News Network
and the show has an an official site in Japanese at http://www.sea-story.tv/, nya!

Elizabeth:
There are entries for Taisho Yakyuu Musume / Taisho Baseball Girls
and official (Japanese language) web site at http://www.tbs.co.jp/anime/taisho/

Jeannie:
With regard to Sora no Manimani / At the Mercy of the Sky
there’s articles at Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sora_no_Manimani
and Studio Comet’s home page (Japanese language) http://www.st-comet.com/
Mary Nyan
For information on Hayao Miyazaki’s Ponyo on a Cliff by the Sea,
I suggest the entries at wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ponyo
and for any Miyazaki / Studio Ghibli info I always recommend the awesome
Mike:
We’ll have to add those to the DVD wish list!
 

The cat lady sings (and thanks)…
Elizabeth:
I guess this is it for this edition of The Mew! We would like to purrticularly
thank our dear friend and web master Jamie Robertson for his hard work!
Yvonne:
We wanna thank Sakky, Jamie Davenport, Rainbowfish, Jeff Branch
… and again congratulate Eisner Award winner Andrew Pepoy, nya-

Mary Nyan:
-and expurress our gratitude to the artists, writers, editors, staff, publishers,
purrinters, actors, filmmakers, purrducers, crew & distributors who made the
entertaining comics, books, movies & TV shows that we very much enjoyed!

(the catgirls in unison)
DOMO ARIGATOO GOSAIMASU, NYA!

Jeannie:
If y’all have polite, sincere responses to our discussion, feel free to post them –
purrvided that such brief non-snarky remarks are spam-free and stay on-topic.

Mike:
Thanks for watching The Mew everybody! We’ll be back with more next month!
Be there… aloha!

(the girls in unison):
Happy tails to mew, until we eat again! BaiBai, nya!

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