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Thread: Phil's Bit - You Gotta Be Kidding Me - A Retrospective

  1. #1
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    Default Phil's Bit - You Gotta Be Kidding Me - A Retrospective

    Pick up an issue from #1-6.
    It doesn't matter which one, any will do.
    Check the title.
    It clearly states "The All New, All Different Alpha Flight."
    It's not like you weren't warned.

    Y'know what I loved about Byrne's Alpha run?
    The humour. The disfucntionality.
    The times when Judd and Walt would fight.
    The times when Northstar would be obnoxious.
    The times when the teams roster would be in flux and disrupt.
    The personality and characterisation.

    If I just wanted "action" back then I'd have got any other book on the stand.
    And that still stands to this day.
    There are x hundred books out there today(x probably being quite apt).
    ANADAF fills a spot that no-others do, for me.
    It HAS characterisation - for me a rare thing in Marvel these days.
    It HAS emotion, it has disfunctionality, it has obnoxiousness.
    For me it IS Alpha Flight, in book alone.

    Yes it doesn't have all the original cast.
    But is that a bad thing?
    If it did, you'd all be shooting down Scott for ruining your favourite characters.
    So, Scott has constructed a (virtually) new cast.
    New characters, new personalities, new people.
    BUT he's kept the spirit of AF alive in them.
    (This is where Vol.2 failed in my eyes. Ultimate Dept. H maybe. But there was no Byrne era spirit in it for me. I still enjoyed it and think highly of it, but I prefer Vol.3 so far)

    The cover image to #2 came out online and in preview catalogues before #1 was on sale.
    Is there anyone alive who saw it and was expecting a serious Watchmen-esque title?
    Anyone?
    Please raise your hands now.

    I haven't read Watchmen.
    I don't plan to.
    I'm pig-sick of books being compared to it.
    I don't enjoy The Authority.
    It bores me.
    I come to comics for escapism.
    If I want politics I'll go elsewhere.
    I want something that captures my attention and leaves me waiting for the next issue.

    ANADAF suceeds here.

    However I don't want a book to be dumbed down.
    I don't want to be patronised.

    ANADAF suceeds here too. Never once have I felt cheated by it.

    What happened to the comics I enjoyed as a child?
    The same thing that happened to new comics readers.
    They're all gone.

    I don't get people who buy books out of loyalty.
    To me that's the action of a rabid fanboy - something which I personally cannot stand.
    My money is hard earnt.
    Why the hell would I spend it on something I hate?
    %$£& loyalty.

    Go back and read #1's 1-6 together in one sitting.
    The humour works a lot better.
    It flows easier, and the tricks such as the mirrored panel makes a lot more sense.
    Maybe it's Marvel's TPB program that defined the length of this storyline to be 6 issues.
    I'm not saying Scott's stretched it out or anything, but it does tend to read better as a whole.
    That's Marvel's perogative as a business.
    Doing the best it can to reach out and get new readers, without compromising the old ones, which is never a bad thing.
    And ultimately make money.
    If Scott, and Marvel itself, get money from my enjoyment of this title, then so what?
    I'm quite prepared to pay for my satisfaction in this respect.
    If you aren't - don't.
    %&*$ all this clichéd rabid foaming internet fanboy *&%^ about you have a right to ***** and moan and slander and slate as soon as you lay down your cash.
    You chose to buy it, you live with it.
    Don't go telling other people what they should and shouldn't be reading and enjoying.
    If you hate the book and are just wanting to slate it for the sake of it, *%$^ off and be unconstructive elsewhere.

    This forum is a place for constructive discussion.
    Not forcing your viewpoint on other people.

    And with that, I invite people to pick out their favourite moments from the arc.

    Mine - Nemesis cowering at the pure good that was MMLJnr.

  2. #2
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    lol, you're calling other's "rabid fanboys".

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    Phil, you calling us 'Rabid Fan Boys'? When where, why can't I see this, where's my eyes?

    Fave part so far, gotta be Makka... (YJ's) dad doing a cash deal for his boy with Walt. Makka... reminds me of some of the boys I work with.
    Del

    Driftwood: Well, I got about a foot and a half. Now, it says, uh, "The party of the second part shall be known in this contract as the party of the second part."
    Fiorello: Well, I don't know about that...
    Driftwood: Now what's the matter?
    Fiorello: I no like-a the second party, either.
    Driftwood: Well, you should've come to the first party. We didn't get home 'til around four in the morning... I was blind for three days!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sir John A.
    lol, you're calling other's "rabid fanboys".
    I didn't point fingers or name names.
    You've jumped to the conclusion that I meant you.
    That implies you have a guilty conscience about being one.
    Which implies that you are indeed one.

    And just as a further bit of insight; Yer the one who uses LOL in a sentence.


  5. #5
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    You've jumped to the conclusion that I meant you.

    You've jumped to the conclusion that I meant myself.

    Though now that you mention it you do seem to have taken a pretty hostile attitude towards me.

  6. #6
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    Not at all, apologies if it seems that way from the one post I've ever written towards you.
    I'm just trying to do my job and moderate the place, keeping the peace, and stopping people's opinions from being shot down simply because they differ from others'.

  7. #7
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    Good writing job Phil. Poetry-style is beyond me.

    My favorite parts so far:

    "all the other girls have bunnies" in #2

    MML stopping Sasquatch in #6

    Puck all the way in #4

    Centenniel and the Bomb in #6

    Yes all, this is a character book with less action than some. Some of you said it great, just cut out that humour with the reader (the 4th wall stuff), it works when it's between characters.

    But I like this series. 100 is our goal right now.
    Keep your stick on the ice.

    Live it.

  8. #8
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    I don't get people who buy books out of loyalty.
    To me that's the action of a rabid fanboy - something which I personally cannot stand.
    My money is hard earnt.
    Why the hell would I spend it on something I hate?
    %$£& loyalty.
    Didn't take it personally, but I have admitted to buying the book out of loyalty, so in fairness it applies.

    My money is also hard earnt, and if I hated it, I wouldn't be spending on it. Actually, after #3, I had no intention of picking up #4. But I did flip through it on the rack and saw the solid characterization. Those opening panels pulled me in, which led to my money going down for #5 & 6. Now we're back to flip through on the stand for #7.

    I am a "rabid fanboy" of a sorts. AF is one title that I have pretty much every appearance of. Cloak & Dagger is another, and I probably have better than 90% of Avengers appearances But I understand the economics of the marketplace. If I need to make my collection complete but don't like the current issue or series enough, I will not buy it as a new issue that is one of the many drops in the bucket that helps the book survive or a current creative team stay on.

    Issues I skip can always be bought as a back issue after the title is cancelled or the creative team has changed. Usually at deep discounts.

    True "Rabid fanboys" typically follow artists and what's hot this week, and I am definitely one who follows writers and doesn't care if other people are liking what I'm liking.

    Does that make sense?
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    I honestly don't understand how, if you are a completist, you could consider not buing an issue of AF. That is to say buying the issues at this point keeps the book going. Even if you aren't toatally happy with the direction the book is taking, it does keep it alive, to eventually become somthing that is more to your liking. I see this series as AF's last chance. How many times would Marvel be willing to give this title a chance? To me, buying the book makes sense for a fan, and then to vocalize your complaints to Mavrvel.

    Ben

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    Didn't take it personally, but I have admitted to buying the book out of loyalty, so in fairness it applies.
    Me too though I wouldn't call myself a "fan boy" but like Ben said I'm a "completist". Af is one of a few titles that I'm trying to own every issue of. I'd call that a collector.

    Secondly, I buy AF our of a partiotic loyalty or duty. AF is the most recognized "Canadian" comic book which is a big reason for me supporting it.

    In a similar fashion I was collecting some comics by Dreamwave Studios in order to support a Canadian comic book publisher. Unfortunately the writting was so bad that it got to the point that I wasn't even reading the comics I bought. I dropped them from my subscription.

    Issues I skip can always be bought as a back issue after the title is cancelled or the creative team has changed. Usually at deep discounts.
    Hm....that's awefully tempting. But like Ben said, I feel the need to support the book and give it a chance. Seeing as how it might not last much longer I'll stick it out.

  11. #11
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    I stuck through with Alpha post #50 with the lack of characters I liked, through Calimee's art. It was Alpha, I had every appearance. But even then, (in example) I told myself that if Ann Nocenti ever took over the title and turned it into a soapbox a month, I would drop the title flat just as I had done with Daredevil.

    The payoff came when Nicienza dn Bair went on the book. Scott's run was funny, and I loved the Furman/Broderick stuff almost as much as I loved Byrne's.

    I am not anti-change in comics. I really LIKED the young-Stark in Iron Man prior to Heroes Reborn and I supported it. I found the Heroes reborn thing to be a slap in the face to someone who owned all but a dozen or so original issues of Avengers and some 75% of FF, and I went cold turkey from those titles. In fact, what sucked most at the time about cencellations of titles like Alpha and New Warriors was that there was more of a reason for the titles to exist because of Heroes reborn.

    I stuck with all of v2, and so far, have bought every issue of v3. My approach to the next issue is wait and see. I want to support and love anything related to Alpha. I collect for both enjoyment and investment value. Investment wise, it is sometimes sharp economic sense to wait and buy out of a quarter bin. I do that if my investor speculation suggests that would be the shrewder move, or if there's something I like that I don't think would ever be worth much.

    I am 100% in support of Clayton's art. I have always enjoyed Lobdell, and Alpha is my all time favorite, so it is most likely that I will continue buying the issues. But I am cold with the thought of only the new team in #7, going up against wax figures.

    I rate this AF version as 2.5 out of 5 stars. There's a lot of redeeming qualities, and a lot of things I really haven't liked. I'm in the honeymoon period of home ownership, so things have been tight enough without putting new driveways into areas that were woodlands with 60-year-old oak trees, new roof that my realtor ACTIVELY HID from me before the closing and rehabbing the rental units that had seen 30+ years of neglect under the slum-lord prior owners. The time when I could afford to support a book I generally liked and had collected for a while even though I rated it at less than 2.5 is now gone.

    I have to let me conscience dictate my choices. I make up my own mind and try to be informed as I can in any decision. Otherwise, I get stuck between differing opinions of other people (both of whom I like in this instance) one (Ben) who says "how can I not support this book" and another (Phil) who criticizes purchases of blind loyalty.

    Ben, I think you know I have a very deep love for all things Alpha. I've stayed with Weapon X because, prior to AFv3, for me, it was Alpha Flight. I've liked almost everything I've read from Scott in the past, and I am becoming a big fan of Clayton Henry. I WANT to LOVE this book, and the potential is there. Most of the things I don't like are things other people have cited. That is why I post here, and try to keep criticisms constructive, so Scott Lobdell and Marvel staffers can see what is and is not working.

    But it makes no economic sense to pay full price for something I don't like when I can get it as a 50% off back issue next year, or even out of a quarter bin.

    The best I can promise is to give #7 a fair look-through. Doing so did get me to buy #4 after my dislike for #3.
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    Forthcoming stories in Breath and Shadow, Star Dreck anthology and The Aether Age: Helios.

    ~I woke up one morning finally seeing the world through a rose colored lense. It turned out to be a blood hemorrhage in my good eye.

  12. #12
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    sorry for the double post...
    I honestly don't understand how, if you are a completist, you could consider not buing an issue of AF. That is to say buying the issues at this point keeps the book going.
    I have also found the "collector mentality" to be somewhat unhealthy because it does tend to focus the collector's concentration on what you DON'T have rather than what you DO have.

    Should I be happy that I own Avengers 16, and everything from #20 up including entireties of WCA and Spotlight (except Heroes Reborn) or be lamenting that I don't own 1-15 and 17-19?
    www.kozzi.us

    recent publications in M-Brane Science Fiction and the anthology Things We Are Not.
    Forthcoming stories in Breath and Shadow, Star Dreck anthology and The Aether Age: Helios.

    ~I woke up one morning finally seeing the world through a rose colored lense. It turned out to be a blood hemorrhage in my good eye.

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    I can understand your point of view Kozzi, I just can't see AF in that context personally, though I could see other books like that, that I don't feel such a fondness for. To me, I view this series as Alpha's last chance. If this series gets cancelled, I really don't think we will ever see an other. I just can't imagine, personally not supporting AF. Trust me, I understand financial constraints! I'm in the process of starting a new business, which i have been building from the ground up. I have a lot of debt, and a lot of bills, but I'm finding the $10 a month to buy my two copies. I'm not meaning to sound like I'm preaching, or taking the moral high-groud, I guess I just can't understand how a fan wouldn't support it. You said you were there in the thick and thin of it in the first volume. To me this volum is way better than some of the low points Alpha has seen. To each his/her own I guess...maybe if you stop buying it, I'll have to find the $5 a month to get a 3rd copy

    Ben

  14. #14
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    Back in the day I could afford to support it in the hopes it would get better more than I feel I can today. I am also aware of the changes in the marketplace from 15 - 20 years ago.

    There's also some good stuff on the market that I'm not buying for financial constraints. As I started with them and that is the base of my collection, I have stopped buying non-Marvels as a means of financial control. There may be things from DC and others I buy in trade, but I stopped on single issues.

    In one of the other threads, someone did say about feeling exploited with "Alpha Flight" title not being Alpha Flight. As my mind ran to things other than what I was actually doing today, it occurred to me that I think there is an intent to exploit the long time fans, all in SL's plans as he presented them. I COULD BE VERY WRONG IN MY REASONING AND WILL RESPECT ANY RESPECTFUL POST THAT TELLS ME SO, but this was what I was thinking:

    Paraphrasing here according to the thoughts that made their way through my granite noggin today, Scott said he had big plans for AF as a franchise, and if we wanted to see "Uncanny" AF featuring the original team, we had to put up a good showing of support for this book. It kind of occurred to me today that such a mentality is exploitation. For the die hards to see the characters we really would prefer to see, we have to support something we might not want to see, all so one writer can double his assignments. We all saw that as enthusiasm, and maybe we were kidding ourselves.

    Basically, let's see a show of hands:
    if we had our choice in deciding the contents of issue #7, would we rather see:
    ADAD fighting wax statues (probably demonstrating Canada's need for defenders) or
    the originals (with or without the newbies along for the ride) dealing with the Plodex eggs on the Plodex homeworld


    Ben, I promise you: I have not said nor will I say that I WILL NOT pick up any future issues. I am just not having them pre-ordered and I am making purchasing decisions based solely on the quality of the issue before me any given month.

    And I am hoping to buy just so that little collector's completionist voice from the back of the brain will stop nagging me.
    www.kozzi.us

    recent publications in M-Brane Science Fiction and the anthology Things We Are Not.
    Forthcoming stories in Breath and Shadow, Star Dreck anthology and The Aether Age: Helios.

    ~I woke up one morning finally seeing the world through a rose colored lense. It turned out to be a blood hemorrhage in my good eye.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ben
    I honestly don't understand how, if you are a completist, you could consider not buing an issue of AF. That is to say buying the issues at this point keeps the book going. Even if you aren't toatally happy with the direction the book is taking, it does keep it alive, to eventually become somthing that is more to your liking. I see this series as AF's last chance. How many times would Marvel be willing to give this title a chance? To me, buying the book makes sense for a fan, and then to vocalize your complaints to Mavrvel.

    Ben
    I'm in complete agreement with this. I don't always like the book (loved #2 and #5, hated #1 and #4) but I want it to have a chance to improve.

    Even if Alpha got another shot in the future, it wouldn't be for years and years.

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