Bah, humbug

It’s the last day of the four-day Thanksgiving weekend, and I’m having mixed feelings about things. I realized today that this is my longest stretch of time off from work this year, except for my five days off with COVID, and that definitely doesn’t count as a vacation. And I haven’t done much with the time.

It’s been a mostly relaxing four days. I had a bit of a wobble yesterday, when they started playing Christmas music here in Somerville, too loud, and I started getting the shakes. I’m half-kidding about that, but the multiple “Christmas music playing all night” incidents here on Main Street have definitely scarred me a bit. So any holiday spirit that had started percolating up in me was quickly tamped down.

I’ve read some actual, printed, standard size, physical comics this weekend. I haven’t touched my “to be read” comics box in quite a while. From my notes, it looks like I might not have read any “real” comics since… Halloween 2021? (That can’t be right.) Well, either way, it’s been a while. (I’ve read some digital comics this year and last year, and some physical graphic novels, though.)

I read all twelve issues of Brian Bendis’ Legion of Super-Heroes run earlier in the weekend. I’d been looking forward to that. It was… OK. I was disappointed with certain aspects of it, and found it overall a bit frustrating, but there were some fun bits. I guess that, if I want to read Legion comics like the ones I read when I was a kid, I should just go back and re-read those.

Today, I read the first six issues of Warren Ellis’ The Batman’s Grave series. I’ve always really liked Ellis, but I haven’t read anything by him since mid-2020, when all the… unpleasantness came to light. At that time, I’d already bought about half the series, and was pretty much committed to buying the rest of it. I don’t think he’s done any comics work since this, so this might be his last long-form comics work? It’s pretty good, honestly. I’m a big Batman fan, but sometimes I get tired of of the character. I don’t think I’ve read any Batman books since this one, around two years ago. (And I notice I mentioned “Batman fatigue” in my review on that one, so I’ve really been cutting back on the Batman stuff, apparently.) Anyway, I’m finding this series a lot more satisfying than the previously-mentioned Legion series. It’s a lot of fun, with some nice banter between Bruce and Alfred, and some great art from Bryan Hitch.

I just googled Bryan Hitch to see if I was spelling his name right, and found out that he’s one of the founders of Ghost Machine, a new comics company that I was vaguely aware of, but hadn’t paid any attention to. It looks interesting, but of course the last thing I need is more comics!

The search also turned up some news about the recent casting of the actor who is going to play The Engineer in the next Superman movie. Again, I was kind of vaguely aware of this, but hadn’t given it any thought. I’d forgotten that The Engineer was created by Ellis and Hitch. I imagine the movie folks will want to play down Ellis’ role there. I can’t say I’m too excited about the movie, but maybe it’ll be interesting. It’s been hard for me to work up any enthusiasm for DC-related movies lately.

And, as usual, that search got me off track from whatever it was I was meant to be writing about here. I think I was going to mention that I had drowned out the Christmas music yesterday by watching Netflix’s Bodies mini-series. I was going to mention that it’s based on a comic that looks interesting, and that I’ve added to my Amazon wish list. I noticed that the comic isn’t available digitally, which is kind of unusual. I have no clue why that is, but I may give in and buy a physical copy at some point.

I’ve noticed that reading comics this weekend has caused me to add a bunch of other comics to my wishlist, and has also moved me to buy a handful, via Amazon/Comixology. Some of that is from books related to the ones I’m reading, and some is from seeing stuff in house ads in the comics, and thinking “oh yeah, I wanted to buy that.” I think the problem here is that I went (mostly) cold turkey on new comics in mid-2020 or so, and that’s when these books I’m reading came out. (And Amazon has some big sales going on this weekend, so I can get stuff cheap.) The Legion books led me to Future State: Superman, which was on sale for $3. The whole Future State thing is one of the reasons I stopped buying comics. I wasn’t opposed to it, per se, but it made for a good jumping off point. But for $3 for a 400+ page book, why not give it a try? I also bought N.K. Jemisin’s Far Sector collection for only $2. I’d actually wanted to pick that up, but just hadn’t gotten around to it. I saw a house ad in one of the comics I read today, so that reminded me, and got me to check the price on Amazon. I also bought a few more books that were on sale for $2 or $3. I don’t feel too bad about any of that, since I’ve bought so few comics this year. Still, my Comixology “to be read” list has 239 items on it right now…

It’s 1:30 PM right now, and I don’t hear any Christmas music outside, so I might be lucky, and yesterday’s music was just a one-time thing  for Small Business Saturday, and not a daily thing that I’m going to have to put up with until December 25.

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