questionable words & pictures from John Linton Roberson.

John L. Roberson

John L. Roberson
Berkeley, California, USA
January 22
Bottomless Studio
John Linton Roberson is an illustrator, cartoonist and writer, living in Berkeley, California. His new graphic novel is the first volume of his version of Frank Wedekind's LULU, Book 1 now available at Amazon.com, Comixology & Createspace. He is also the creator of VLADRUSHKA, SUZY SPREADWELL, and numerous other works in words and pictures since 1989. Find out more at jlroberson.org. Follow him on Twitter, too! @jlr_1969

JANUARY 1, 2012 11:01PM

Flushing 2011: Some Bests, Worsts, and Predictions Sure to Fail

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Baby New Year has killed that crazy old man with his own scythe. He crushed his head with an enormous ball in Times Square, then cut out his liver and ate it raw for the old man's power. Making him the only child who will voluntarily eat liver. But it's laced with a 365-day time release poison.

In the meantime, let's sweep the last of that hideous year away before we all agree it never happened. We were asleep or drunk or something will be the cover story.

Some best ofs, worst ofs, and predictions, in comics, politics, and others. I am not bothering with links because I don't feel like it right now, so there. No particular order.

Predicted DC Event 2012 Once People Start Liking What They're Doing Now Long Enough: WE WERE KIDDING, where everything goes back.

Geoff Johns Prestige Project 2012: His dream project, planned for years, in which every single character in the DC universe has their arm cut off on the high seas. To be titled ALL HANDS ON DECK, it will of course star Aquaman. "Oh no, not again," he'll mutter on the promo poster, the caption reading: "But this time...he's not alone." Should be a hit among amputee fetishists.

Predicted Marvel Event 2012: LUST ITSELF. Just one, long, massive linewide orgy, something like HEROGASM but...no, that's all. Just that.

Adult Product Apple Will Introduce Now That Steve Jobs is Dead 2012: iSuck. At last the secret wish of every iPhone owner will happen.

My Prediction for Invention of 2012: Robot murder pigs. This time, you will be the bacon.

Best Comedic Video Thing: "I Threw It On the Ground", by Andy Samberg/Lonely Planet

What Is Wrong With People 2011: Charlie Sheen, and all that entails.

Best Film of 2011: Lars von Trier's MELANCHOLIA. In a happier year it might not have been my pick for Best, but MELANCHOLIA expresses perfectly the flavor of this year.

Most Flawed Yet Passionate Film of 2011: RED STATE, though I'm no Smith fan; the second half feels like another movie rudely walked in, but the first 45 minutes are horror gold.

It Didn't Happen 2011: Harold Camping's Rapture. Well, for him in a way, he had a stroke soon after the date didn't come.

Best Tweet from a Comics Pro: Matt Fraction, who later removed it but unfortunately for him, I saved it because it kept making me giggle:

"HOLY SHIT! ACE is the place with the helpful hardware man and OFF THE CHAIN NYE ORGIES! I just nutted on this wrench! #sponsoredtweet"
I believe he was angling for a free hammer. Fraction, as we know, has a thing for hammers. Oh, and CASANOVA resumed this year, so buy it because it's really fucking good.

Oh God What Is That KILL IT Mainstream Comic 2011: Almost all of FLASHPOINT, hands down. Burn it from those parts of your brain. And...

Worst comic from FLASHPOINT-LEGION OF DOOM. Besides that I just happen to love Jack Cole's, and Martin Pasko & Joe Staton's, PLASTIC MAN, FLASHPOINT: LEGION OF DOOM was an obscenity. A violent, badly drawn, badly written prison snuff comic. Yes, DC, I was really waiting to see the Atom's head squished & Plas to erupt in a bloody mess from a human body like the Alien. Even if an alternate universe(whose whole purpose was both to keep the New 52 on schedule for September--most of the artists were actually from the DCU Online, i.e. games, division--and to apparently make you really beg for the relaunch), what the living fuck.

Why Did You Do That Comic Gail(You're Better Than That) 2011: FIRESTORM THE NUCLEAR MEN (52 reboot) written somehow with Ethan Van Sciver. It's kind of like a premature baby whose mom was bathing in plutonium. Thankfully Simone's BATGIRL is far better.

Most Obvious Fascist Thuggery 2011: the fine work of Pepper Spray Cop.

Asshole of the Year 2011: Donald Trump, but that's like nominating Meryl Streep for an Oscar.

Favorite Underground Comic 2011: LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN: CENTURY 1969. Dig it.

Favorite Indie Comics Company 2012: Fantagraphics, because they're the only company(apart from possibly Top Shelf) with the guts to publish Dave McKean's erotic graphic poem CELLULOID. Which also my pick of best "art" comic of 2011.

Favorite Excuse 2011: But I was earlier than you thought I'd be.

Worst Political Figure 2011, Elected Division: Rep. Joe Walsh of Illinois, the noted deadbeat dad and rage addict, who knows nothing & yells.

Worst Political Figure, Candidate Division 2011: Herman Cain, who else? The perfect storm of sleazy, incompetent, hubristic, embarrassing and stupid.

Best Humor Comic 2011: Still Kate Beaton's HARK, A VAGRANT. "Clara. I don't do that thing anymore. With the nuts." SPECIAL MENTION: Her strips based on Nancy Drew covers. Nancy, as it turns out, is fucking insane.

Favorite Awful Thing To Haunt Your Dreams: Popsicle Pete by Seanbaby. Or is it the other way around? "None of you are safe."

Best Reboot (Superhero) 2011: Brian Azzarello & Cliff Chiang's WONDER WOMAN. Second place, but only because unlike Wonder Woman, I liked the character BEFORE the reboot(which is so soft I do not even think it is really one) to Scott Snyder & Greg Capullo's BATMAN, which is developing nicely.

Best Horror Comic: HELLBLAZER, Peter Milligan, Giuseppe Camuncoli & Simon Bisley occasionally. A perennial favorite, both Milligan and Hellblazer, for me, but I had actually not read the series from the Ellis run till his.
Honorable mention: Scott Snyder/Yanic Paquette's SWAMP THING & Jeff Lemire/Travel Portman's ANIMAL MAN. Both are pretty soft reboots as well--ST seems to be perfectly following in a line from its predecessors, but most especially Moore and Millar, and William Arcane is my nominee for creepiest kid character presently in comics. AM seems to mostly follow in the same ballpark as Jamie Delano & Steve Pugh's excellent run on the series in the mid-90s, which DC really should reprint. But both are only to their 4th issues at this writing and are still setting up their stories so I can't fully judge except that I like what I see so far, a lot.

Stupidest Prediction I Made 2011: Cranial tattoos did not in fact become widespread fashion, except I think in Nebraska.

It's Bad But I Forgot Because It's Barely a Comic Anyway 2011: HAWK & DOVE, with Rob Liefeld. Next, he writes it too. I see.

Favorite Comics-Oriented Site (News): I guess it's Comic Booked.

Ugliest New 52 Reboot 2011: JUSTICE LEAGUE, New 52 version. You see, they all really ARE on steroids now and have a lot of rage. Except Barry, who's boring. Highlights: Superman is not just a dick, he's a thug who kills without a second thought. And watch a dainty little supermodel Wonder Woman completely contradict everything they've built her into over in her own comic, walking around in city streets waving her sword about like someone who doesn't know how to hold one, and being amazed by ice cream. Geoff Johns writes her like he just saw SPLASH. There is a good Geoff Johns who right now has also turned AQUAMAN into a joy to read, perfect entertainment which is warm, sometimes funny, action-packed, intelligent and beautifully drawn by Ivan Reis(and whose Aquaman is nothing like the one in JL). Then there is the bad Johns who reduces every character into a pitch repeated like a nervous tic and here in Justice League, seems to think there's some untapped jock audience out there. I wish the good one would kill the bad one. Geoff Johns is frustrating when he writes badly (See also: FLASHPOINT) because you know he knows better.

Announcement That Makes Me Want to Send Some Guys But I'm Not in Chicago Anymore 2012: Tie: PEANUTS (Kaboom!)/ WATCHMEN 2 (DC) Jesus wept.

Saddest Downfall of a Major Talent, 2012: Frank Miller's HOLY TERROR and that strange publicity campaign for it he did drunk one night.

Predicted Comics Controversy 2012: Emboldened by success in denying Rick Veitch, Steve Bissette and the rest of the 1963 team the right to reprint the work, Alan Moore denies publication rights to self. "That bastard's been making bad business decisions and ripping me off for years," Alan Moore will say of self.

Most Batshit Insane Comic of 2011: Still Neal Adams' BATMAN: ODYSSEY. I don't even know what this is.

Favorite Comics-Oriented Site 2012(non-news): the Scans Daily Collective. If you want to gauge the true voice of fans, that's it. No trolls.

Least Crappy Mainstream Company 2011: On balance I'm forced to say Marvel. Overall their line is more fun and that's all the mainstream's for.

Favorite Mainstream Series-Marvel 2011: Kieron Gillen's JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY. There appears to have been no other constructive purpose in FEAR ITSELF than to bring this consistently excellent comic into the world.

Worst Movie of 2011: ATLAS SHRUGGED, part 1 they threaten. Uncompromisingly awful. Yes, I did track it down and watch it, via altruistic means. I want more of my life back than that took. They should understand that. They're into profit.

Favorite Comics/Book That Didn't Come Out This Year But That I Finally Got One of: art spiegelman's BREAKDOWNS, which I can't stop reading.

Best Groundlevel Indie Comic of 2012: THE LAST BATTLE by Tito Faraci & Dan Brereton, who writes in the sketchbook section at the end he hadn't thought himself up to it, but boy was he. I recommend this especially to fans of ROME.

Favorite movie I rediscovered this year: Nicholas Roeg/Donald Cammell's "Performance"(1970) "Putting the frighteners on flash little twerps" is now my goal this year.

Best Eye Candy Site For Adults: The Things That Excite Me.

Worst TV Show of 2011: I don't know, I didn't see it.

Worst TV Moment of 2011: Deb falls in love with her brother Dexter.

Favorite album of 2011: David Lynch 's "CRAZY CLOWN TIME."

Worst Version of Frank Wedekind's LULU: Lou Reed & Metallica's. Oh, Lou.

Best Comedic Troupe 2011: The GOP Primary Candidates.

Most Poorly Thought-Out Political Strategy 2011: The GOP taking an intractable & adamantine stand against a tax cut.

Most Ideologically Calcified Commenters 2011: Huffington Post, either political side. It's like watching an endless programmed war between Ann Coulter & Bill Maher robots.

Babe of 2011: Helen Mirren.

Oh No,I'd Hoped You Were dead 2011: Newt Gingrich. This is also a rash newts get. And every now and then, elephants.

Best Self-Inflicted Mortal Wound 2011: John Galliano

Predicted Comics Adaptation 2012: ED THE HAPPY CLOWN with Russell Crowe.

Bank Prediction for 2012: They will charge you for not having your account at their bank.

Best Work Going Into Public Domain As of 2012: James Joyce's ULYSSES. Eat it, Stephen Joyce. Eat it raw.

New Trend Prediction 2012: People will look at things sometimes.

You'll Never See It Coming Till It's Too Late 2012: That thing behind you.

Music Trend Prediction 2012: Silent music videos.

Movie Remake Prediction 2012: THREE STOOGES by Eli Roth.

The Kids Will Be Doing It Prediction 2012: Anal piercing. Oh yes, that does sound like it hurts.

Hottest Food Trend Prediction 2012: Free soup.

Hipster Trend Prediction for 2012: Ironically enjoying corporate training videos.

Wish for 2012: Less politics, more art.

HAPPY NEW YEAR! And remember, this year, don't get caught holding the sodding baby.


Love Roberson or die at jlroberson.org.

Follow him too on Twitter or there will be consequences. Things. Not saying.

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