Rapping Lowdown (BBC, 1989)

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Code%20Name%20Rebel%20Crew

Meet Def G, Lady Rockski and MC Sonix (aka Chris to his mum), as they gave a British perspective on the state of Hip-Hop in 1989, plus Ice T in concert! Taken from BBC2 youth programme ‘Rapping Lowdown’. DJ Dave Pearce (then of GLC Radio) also gives his perspective.

A little time capsule of innocence and loveliness in it’s own way. Too-Hype Posse in effect! Featuring MC Kaos, described by one of his posse as ‘the cassette’!!!

Wonder what happened

Review – The Walking Dead #71 (Image, 2010)

Finally here – about 6 weeks late (Kirkman even kicks off his ‘Letter Hacks’ with an apology). Was it worth the wait? Of course it was, though I doubt anyone was expecting fireworks in this issue, and in that sense, this issue did not disappoint. A low-key introduction to the new community that Rick & co have arrived into, some rules and boundaries are set, and adjusting to the new life is shown with wonderful clarity by the ever talented Charlie Adlard (just little details in the panels, like Carl & Sophia interacting – it’s touching and wonderful).

And then there is the fear, suspicion and uncertainty on both sides. Which side has the most to fear, and the most to lose? Kirkman clearly sets this out as a big question in this issue, and that theme runs the whole duration of #71, until the final full page panel, when someone says something that spins the direction of this arc in a direction that should really challenge your perceptions on some of the characters in this drama.

An issue to read at least a couple of times – many threads are being developed here that are going to run their course in this arc and beyond. It also boasts one of the best covers of this fine series.

Worth waiting for – but if we get issue #72 within 4 weeks I will be very, very happy.

Review – Crossed Family Values #1 (Avatar, 2010)

SPOILER FREE!

When I first heard about this sequel to ‘Crossed’ I was sceptical. I figured ‘Crossed’ to be something that would not, could not be done – how do you follow up on something as grossly unique and sick as Crossed? Well, it has been done, minus Garth Ennis and Jacen Burrows, and all I can say is WOW. If anything, the intensity, fear, gore, terror and depravity of humans and the ‘Crossed’ is more pronounced, more keenly felt in this terrific drama from David Lapham – yes, David Lapham, recently of ‘Young Liars’. He has done Ennis’ creation proud, with a barnstorming opener that manages to fit in family drama at its rawest, a siege, and, of course, the ‘Crossed’. My god they are a terrifying, awesome enemy. The art, by Javier Barreno, fits in well with the Jacen Burrows stylings of the original ‘Crossed’, and that is not meant as a slight. His art is brilliant in its staging, it capturing of the everyday and the apocalyptic.

If you were a Crossed fan, I don’t need to tell you that you need to give this a try. If you are a Lapham fan, try it, but be prepared to be more shocked, as this is no ‘Young Liars’- it is much more ‘out-there’. For the rest – if you think of your worse nightmare, of vivid, bloody, needless slaughter, of desperate struggle and a nihilistic, darker-than-dark atmosphere pervading everything….well, if you want to read that in comic form, dive in! ‘Crossed Family Values’ #1 is out now.

It is not easily forgotten, and it has me hooked. This could be something I did not expect to say, but this could easily outstrip the original ‘Crossed’ in terms of quality, drama, terror and excitement.

Boom! presents – DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP?: DUST TO DUST

Press release from Boom!

SPECIAL 8 PAGE PREVIEW

A global science fiction publishing event! John W. Campbell Award-nominee Chris Roberson writes the prequel to Philip K. Dick’s legendary sci-fi novel DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP?
The Animals Are Dying. Someone Needs To Hunt Androids.
These Two Men Will Be The First.

April 22, 2010 – Los Angeles, CA – This May, BOOM! Studios and Electric Shepherd bring you the debut of the authorized prequel to Philip K. Dick’s sci-fi masterpiece DO ANDROID DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP? — the publishing event of the year is DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP? DUST TO DUST!

Written by Chris Roberson, a John W. Campbell Award-nominee and writer of DC’s hit mini-series CINDERELLA: FROM FABLETOWN WITH LOVE, DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP? DUST TO DUST will feature spectacular interior art by 48 STRON and STATUS 7 artist Robert Adler. The prequel makes a great companion to BOOM! Studios and Electric Shepherd’s Eisner Award-nominated DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP? comic series or can be read completely on it’s own.

DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP? DUST TO DUST answers the question of who hunted androids before Rick Deckard. Taking place immediately after World War Terminus ends, the problems with artificial life — androids — become apparent. The government decides that the androids must be hunted down — but who will do the dirty work? Two men are assigned: Malcolm Reed, a “special” human with the power to feel others’ emotions, and Charlie Victor who’s the perfect man for the job… or is he? What secret does Victor hide? All the while, Samantha Wu, a Stanford biologist, fights to save the last of the living animals.

“We’ve been thrilled with the DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP? series, and are excited to expand this world in DUST TO DUST,” said Isa Dick Hackett of Electric Shepherd Productions. “Chris Roberson’s original prequel story reflects and builds on the themes of Philip K. Dick’s original work, and BOOM! has assembled a fantastic team of artists to realize this vision.”

“DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP? DUST TO DUST explores Philip K. Dick’s universe to a degree no one has dared before,” says BOOM! Studios Marketing Director Chip Mosher. “This all new story is set in a world familiar to Philip K. Dick fans, but make no mistake this is a much different beast. Combine a city, struggling to return from global war, and a hunt for an enemy that could be anyone, and you have just a taste of DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP? DUST TO DUST.”

DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP? DUST TO DUST is written by Chris Roberson with interior art by Robert Adler. Issue one ships with two covers by Trevor Hairsine (CAPTAIN AMERICA) and Benjamin Carré in a 50/50 split, a 1-in-10 incentive cover featuring art by Julian Tedesco (UNTHINKABLE), and carries a Diamond Code of JAN100804.

Originally solicited for March shipping, DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP? DUST TO DUST #1 is currently being order adjusted with orders due from retailers April 30th with a final release date of May 26th. Please contact your local comic shop to reserve your copy today.

Review – Resurrection #10 (Oni Press, 2010)

Things pick up a bit this issue. The ‘Acolyte’ and his ‘Disciples’ find themselves at the mercy of those infected with the alien parasite that makes them look like they are covered in cement and moulded into gargoyles. There is a death (I think, it happens off panel but seemed to imply a death) of one of the major characters and it seemed a bit throwaway as the guy is apparently a bit ‘mysterious’. I had no feelings about the guys death. But I don’t think Guggenheim (in this series) writes sympathetic, likeable or particularly involving characters. What he does write, on occasion, is some great action set-pieces. This is what elevates this issue above the mundanity of the last few Resurrection installments. I was no clearer about anything about Resurrection at the end of the issue. If that helps. It’s just sort of there, mildly entertaining – but I have stuck with this ‘reboot’ for about a year now and I feel compelled to see where it’s going. Not an inspiring review is it? It’s not an inspiring title either.

Solicitation for The Walking Dead #75 (Image, 2010)

The Walking Dead #75, features art by Charlie Adlard, Cliff Rathburn and Ryan Ottley! Lines are crossed, rules are broken and the peace and tranquility of the community are shattered. After months of safety and security, are Rick Grimes and the crew prepared for what they now face? As an added bonus: a very special back-up story drawn by Ryan Ottley in full color–a first for The Walking Dead!

The Walking Dead #75, a 40-page black-and-white comic book featuring the first-ever full-color Walking Dead back-up story, will be available for $3.99 on July 14, 2010.

Exciting stuff indeed – but will we see it in July, seeing as we still haven’t seen #71 and we are fast approaching the end of April? Whatever – when it comes out, issue #75 looks pretty explosive. I like Ottley’s art, but I don’t know if his style will lend itself to the Walking Dead – Adlard’s art defines the title. We shall see….

Wigan Casino and Northern Soul footage from ‘This England’ (1977)

Last week I posted the Plan B video ‘Stay Too Long’, which looked like a great night out if you were in your Twenties. And British. Because we do like to get mashed don’t we? Anyway, in that video there is a little section where some guys are doing some Northern Soul moves, and it was a very nice addition to an entertaining video. So, why don’t we look at some people from the 70’s doing some amazing Northern Soul dancing. It is a spectacle. Wonder how many people lost a tooth when those high-kicks started flying around? This is a documentary from 1977, part of the ITV series ‘This England’. You get to hear some wonderful music as well, like Judy Street singing ‘What’. The quality is not great, but it is out on DVD now as well.

Enjoy.