Good Singing vs. Good Dancing

May 29, 2008 at 11:23 pm (Don't Touch That Dial, Miscellaneous Meta) (, )

Recently I checked out So You Think You Can Dance at the behest of this dude because yes, I am easily influenced by others to try new things over the internet. I started out with the US season 4 (since it just started) and it really is better than (what I remember of) American Idol. Watching it (and thinking on this) got me thinking about how identifying good singing vs. good dancing is different.

I think identifying a good singer (at least to the average joe in the audience) is tougher than identifying good dancing. Don’t get me wrong, the average viewer probably will not catch the nuances of say, personality and energy and clean lines and extensions and musicality and whatnot that a professional will keep an eye out for and make note of. But your average viewer could probably distinguish a bad dancer from the better half of the talent pool. Dance is in many ways considered a performance first and foremost, so the audience has that expectation of a dance–that upon watching it, they will be entertained. So something that doesn’t entertain is not a good dance. I think the average person could easily make these distinctions.

But with singing…singing is tougher to judge as good. Yes, you have the physical package–the face, the movement, etc. But vocal technique is tougher to grasp and it’s harder for someone who doesn’t know what to look for to find it. People can be considered good singers (good enough to publish records) but have terrible vocal technique. It’s harder for someone who doesn’t know what good vocal technique is to say what is and isn’t technically good singing. Yeah, somebody could pick up on singer X was entertaining/unentertaining, that they had personality and good facial expression–but they wouldn’t know whether singer X was, say, forming the vowels correctly (it makes a huge difference in tonal quality) or using appropriate phrasing (debatable; this might still be pick-upable even if you don’t know what a phrase is).

I’m not speaking entirely academically–I know two years of choir class is not exactly a high recommendation for my expertise in singing, but I will say that after two years of being taught vocal technique by teachers who know what they’re saying, I can listen to a song and like the song and enjoy the lyrics and the melody and what have you, and still know that the singer I am listening to has crap technique. But prior to those two years I could not make that differentiation, not until I heard the difference between good vs. bad technique, and not until I knew what good and bad vocal technique was.

So I guess what I am saying is that good dance technique is easier for the layperson to pick up on, whereas good vocal technique is much more subtler and therefore much less so–making it harder for people to tell whether or not they themselves are good or bad singers, which means the number of people who aren’t good singers but still think they’re good enough to audition is exponentially higher for a singing competition like American Idol than the number of people who aren’t good dancers but think they’re good enough to audition for a dance competition like So You Think You Can Dance.

Oof, it’s late and I’m tired; I don’t know if I’m making any sense here. But the shape of the idea is there in my head, and hopefully I’ve managed to write it down in at least semi-coherent form.

ADDED: Another difference–there’s a much wider range of what can be considered good singing. Re: what I said about now being able to identify good vs. bad technique, singing can still be “good” even if technically bad, because for singing good also entails personality, musicality, stage presence, engagement of the audience, facial expression, etc. If you have all of those (plus killer song writing) you can still be classified as a good singer even if your vocal technique is shit.

The same thing applies to dancing too, of course. But with dancing there’s a much smaller range of what is acceptable as good; you don’t have nearly as much leeway as you do with singing. If you want to have those other unquantifiable things that make a good dancer–stage presence, musicality, entertaining, etc.–then that must include at least some technique. Not necessarily professional training caliber technique, but you have to at least know what the hell you’re doing. Because watching someone who doesn’t flail around on stage is only entertaining if you’re into schadenfreude, and otherwise just plain painful. And you can’t be engaging and have stage presence and show your personality when people are too busy cringing to watch you.

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KHR Chapter 179 Splash Page

May 29, 2008 at 10:58 pm (Animanga) (, )

AKA the chapter where Lal Mirch’s revenge is not as important as the boys’, even though she has just as legitimate better reason to what the Millefiore’s guts roasted on a spit.

I saved the Chapter 179 splash page when I first read it but only looked at the image closer today.

1) They depict all the characters as they appear in the Future Arc. So we’ve got past!Gokudera, past!Tsuna, and past!Yamamoto, and past!Lambo. We’ve got future!Mukuro, future!Ryohei, future!Hibari (I’m pretty sure it’s future!Hibari; not that you can tell the difference anyway…), and future!Lal. Plus Reborn sans the stupid containment suit.

2) Lal Mirch is the only female character who appears (Chrome is absent, as is Bianchi, Haru, and Kyoko. To be honest of the four only Bianchi has the most legit claim to be on here; she helped Fuuta gather info on the Millefiore. I think. Other than Lal, the rest of the female characters are either unconscious or housekeepers. Ouch, Amano.). She is depicted in a men’s suit (I assume; with the band and Lambo’s hair in the way she may well be in a pencil skirt); she’s the most aggressive female character, relatively the least concerned with matters or romance (Haru is obsessed with Tsuna, Kyoko also obsessed with…Tsuna (less than Haru though), Bianchi will do anything that looks like Reborn, and Yi-Pin is a five-year-old girl.) though her masculine drive for revenge (desire for revenge seems to be a primarily male quest in Amano’s world) is still motivated by the death of a man she is implied to have loved and been loved by.

Lal Mirch is being included in this gathering of manly Vongola men because she is the most masculine of the female characters, in motivation, demeanor, history (she was part of the COMSUBIN which I understand to be Italian special forces) and mode of dress (the cloak she normally wears obscures her figure; it is only removed when her most feminine traits–that is to say, her implied love for Colonello and the whole noble sacrifice Colonello makes her her and her desire to kill Ginger Bread to avenge Colonello–comes to light Plus she wears goggles over her facial scars which are both ugly and unfeminine things. Well, maybe not the goggles, Bianchi has them too . But the scars, definitely.). Note that she is also the only female character able to fight worth a damn (Bianchi’s ridiculous poison food doesn’t count. Why yes, I do hate her, why do you ask?). I guess what I can conclude is that Amano depicts very off gender dynamics in KHR and apparently believes masculinity = revenge, = strength, and a female cannot have either unless they are masculine…?

And people seriously believe that Amano Akira is a woman?

3) Mukuro is depicted alive and well, still with his beloved pineapple hair (rat tail now included!). This gives me hope. Maybe he really is still alive! (SHUT UP I CAN HOPE IF I WANT TO.)

4) I can’t help but feel like I’m reading too much into this (re: Lal Mirch and Mukuro).

On the other hand I can’t help but feel like I’m really, really not.

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FAIL, Kalec!

May 27, 2008 at 10:12 am (Game Time) ()

From the Kil’jaeden encounter in the Sunwell —

Anveena: I serve only the master now.
Kalec: Anveena, you must awaken, this world needs you.
Anveena: But I’m… lost. I cannot find my way back.
Kalec: You must let go! You must become what you were always meant to be! The time is now, Anveena!
Anveena: Kalec…? Kalec?
Kalec: Anveena, I love you! Focus on my voice, come back for me now! Only you can cleanse the Sunwell!
Anveena: The nightmare is over, the spell is broken! Goodbye, Kalec, my love!
Kalec: Yes, Anveena! Let fate embrace you now!

Kalec, don’t you know that you’re supposed to express at least a little distress when the LOVE OF YOUR LIFE is about to be converted into RAW MAGICAL ENERGY, eliminating a demon lord but also ERADICATING HER SELF?

Note: NEVER FALL FOR A BLUE DRAGON. He will not give a shit when I am noble and self-sacrificing (gag gag gag) and die.

Note II: the female character has an entirely passive role (first as a prisoner, then as a power source, then as a sacrifice) and must die at the behest of the male character. Self-sacrifice is a typically feminine trait? Kalec does not seem to give a shit. Conclusion: WoW is sexist! Not…that that’s anything new…I could write a whole fucking essay on how the representation of men and women in WoW is skewed. Several essays. *sigh*

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Reaction Shots: Naruto 401

May 27, 2008 at 9:27 am (Animanga) (, , )

Spoiler warnings.

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A Thought

May 26, 2008 at 8:44 pm (Miscellaneous Meta) ()

Generally female supervillains are depicted as wearing less than their superhero counterparts. Is this an attempt to denote evil with femininity? By wearing less, female supervillains are displaying more of their skin and figure, thus emphasizing their femininity and their sexuality; since they’re the evil ones, both things are associated with evil. Showing off one’s femininity and being openly more comfortable with your sexuality are thus both demonized when they are applied to women.

Am I way off base here? I’d have to do an indepth comparison of female superhero vs. supervillain outfits (even of characters who have been both; one thinks of Scarlet Witch, Jean Grey, Polaris, Raven…) and see what I find out to give this idea any kind of backing but…well, I thought of it while I was watching Legion of Super Heroes and compared to the Legion ladies, Emerald Empress’ outfit is…lacking. Even if most of her chest and torso are covered in sheer black/grey fabric, the shape of her green swirlies really bring out her…assets.

I suspect that this concept could be applied to manga as well, but its harder to find prominent female characters whose appearance can be subjected to analysis of the same depth as comic book heroines. Manga characters tend not to have the same constant costume changes that superheroes do.

Something to keep in mind, at least.

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KHR Ch 188-94 Reading Notes

May 25, 2008 at 9:06 pm (Animanga) (, )

1. Wait wait wait. If Ryohei’s box weapon has a POUCH then shouldn’t Kangaryuu…be female?

UPDATE: Wikipedia confirms it–only female kangaroos have pouches. So, Amano Akira. What’s up with all the he?

UPDATE II: Wait, never mind, Yamamoto at least has the right end of the stick regarding Kangaryuu’s gender.

…though I note that, once again, the female character is relegated to the support/background role. Yes, I know she’s just a box weapon but how do you explain Bianchi (even though I hate hate hate her)? Kyoko? Haru? Chrome? Even Lal Mirch to a degree; her fight gets only one chapter (which is partly taken up by Arcobaleno stuff) and then she’s motivated to fight by a male character and has to be carried around by Ryohei, unconscious. I bet you it’s not gonna be her who takes out the real Ginger Bread. You heard it here first!

2. GOKUDERA SOMETIMES YOU ARE REALLY SEXY just thought I’d say so real quick. Whut.

3. It’s awful of me (he’s the ENEMY!) but Gamma’s kinda hot too. I don’t remember thinking this when he first showed up…maybe because he was beating up Gokudera and Yamamoto (the GOOD guys!). I think it might be because I just like lightning-themed power sets a lot.

4. Oh, what the–the mighty head of the Millefiore Black Spell wears a friggin’ miniskirt and crop top with a fucking stupid mushroom hat? Note: the female character in a position of power (debatable; the Black Spell is depicted as the fighters and therefore dumb muscle; they are constantly belittled by the male-headed White Spell as inferior) looks like a, a, a teenager. And she may even be a teenager! But she’s still a mafia leader, which requires dignity. That cloak makes her look even smaller and more uselessly weak. Also, why platform boots huh huh huh shouldn’t she look like she could actually, you know, get up and fight? That’s why the White Spell tolerate the Black Spell, after all…

5. Re: female character getting shafted in terms of story roles, Mukuro is (I’d say) the most feminine of the all the Vongola Guardians. Where is he? DEAD. Well, his current body, or the mental part of him body-hopping, presumably is. His physical body is presumably still with the Vendicare. But if his “mind” is dead after Byakuran killed Leonard Lippi, does that make Mukuro brain dead? Then again, he seems to be able to possess multiple bodies at once (the owl, Leo, future Chrome?) so maybe not! THERE’S HOPE FOR HIM HOORAY.

Still. The most feminine male Guardian is killed off quick and offscreen; his role is support–infiltrating the base and transmitting Shouichi’s base’s floor plans. The meat and potatoes of the fighting–the raid on he Millefiore–belongs to the “manly” Guardians. Also the most masculine female character to date, Lal Mirch. So. My point still stands. Not that that’s a particularly new point; if you read KHR to any great extent you soon realize that female characters don’t matter very much at all…it’s all about the menfolk, man. All the guys get the spotlight.

…is Amano Akira seriously a woman?

6. …never mind about Gamma. I’ve had enough of villains who don’t seem to be able to do anything other than gloat. I mean, wtf. If your opponent’s so worthless just finish them off already, why the talk? WHY THE TALK I ASK YOU. It’s not even just Gamma! Baishana was just like this (except worse). So was that Dendro whoever. I bet Spanner was all “LOL U SUCK I ROCK AHAHAHA” too except I skipped most of his fight with Tsuna because Tsuna vs. Moscas, been there done that WHATEVER. And these are just the villains who’ve shown up in the chapters I read today! Ugh.

7. WHOO GO URI Future Gokudera must have been the coolest Guardian ever.

So now that I’m all caught up with KHR will I keep reading it? HMM. The next few chapters promise to be all fighting all the time; we still have…god, so much crap to get through with this Future Arc, so many things to resolve. Is it worth keeping up with? I don’t know. Maybe I WILL keep reading KHR, though now that I’ve had time away from it I’m really seeing its flaws (re: complete bias towards male characters, rinse-and-repeat villains…). Then again, the art’s still pretty and the weapons are still cool, and…well, anyway. We’ll see.

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X-23!

May 23, 2008 at 4:01 pm (Comics Issue #427) (, )

Guys, guys I am like. I do not even know how excited I am! It was the X-Force preview that did me in this time. Check it out on ComicsContinuum.com (or wherever you check this kind of stuff out). I can wait.

Wait, no I can’t.

See, when Yost & Kyle (or whoever did that Newsarama interview) said they wanted Warpath and Wolverine to have a father-son relationship, I was upset, because I kind of wanted that for X-23–she’s long been one of my favorite characters, and I really wanted to see her interact a little with Wolverine on a family level, since…they kind of are, at least genetically. So when it looked like they were leaving out X-23 my hopes for the title (and her!) plummeted.

And then I read this preview. And my fears were washed away, because–in those six pages, I swear I am so an X-23 fangirl again, omg, and and and I can’t wait until I’m in a place where I can buy comics regularly!

See, in my view of X-23 the central conflict to her is between X-23–and Laura. What I mean is, it’s between how she’s been raised to be a weapon, how being a weapon is in her very nature, versus her desire (or people pushing her to be) a normal person. To be Laura Kinney. And she’s been trying to do it, she has, what with her making tentative friends with Mercury and her crushing on Hellion, but X-Force really felt like a step back for her, in terms of that conflict–like she was embracing her inhuman side, rather than straining for her humanity. I thought it was kind of like her giving up on trying to be normal, that it was too hard so she fell back on something familiar–being a weapon and a killer. I hoped to see a little of Wolverine struggle with that, because she’s a living reminder of his own past, so how does he deal with trying to push her in the direction to becoming more like him–savage, a fighter and a killer, but not one without conscience, compassion, and emotion.

I’m projecting a lot onto these six pages and I hope it lives up to my hype (AND I HOPE I CAN READ IT SOME DAY A;DLFJAD PLEASE) but anyway. So, that was my view. The X-23 I had seen so far in the preview for X-Force didn’t seem to be holding up to it–well, holding up to the “she’s a weapon again whoo” side, but not really…the complexity I wanted to see, between her and Wolverine. I wondered why he didn’t fight harder for her to not be on X-Force, even if she was one of the best candidates (I mean, if he’s the best, she’s gotta be second best only to him.). So I was a little disappointed but hoping for something better. This preview? Was that something better.

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I C WAT U DID THAR

May 23, 2008 at 1:57 pm (Comics Issue #427) ()

I was looking at the preview of Wolverine: First Class #3 and and and anyway somehow Wolverine is mutated through many story-tellings into Gulo, the weasel squire?

Some would say that that’s a mistake.

But you see.

There’s a Redwall character whose name is Gulo–and he’s a wolverine.

Fred Van Lente, you are a total geek and that is the best and subtlest allusion I have seen yet in comics. Mad hearts, man. Mad hearts.

ETA: and then I remembered that the wolverine’s scientific name is gulo gulo. *headdesk*

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No Solicitation Allowed – August 2008 (DC Edition)

May 21, 2008 at 8:11 pm (Comics Issue #427, Solicitation Rumination) (, )

On to DC! I figured doing ’em as separate posts was easier than doing ’em all together.

DC Universe: Last Will and Testament #1 How freaking cool is that cover concept? Kudos to the artist and colorist! It’s pretty neat the the faces that’re split are split into connected people–Nightwing and Batman, Donna Troy and Wonder Woman, Geo-Force (I think) and Terra (the traitorous one), Red and Green Arrows, Wildcat and his SURPRISE UNKNOWN SON…trying to find a consistent connection, but I’m not finding any. Maybe someone with a deeper knowledge of comics will know better than I do?

Final Crisis #1: Director’s Cut Special Should I ever get a chance to buy comics regularly, I probably would not be overly inclined to buy Final Crisis. But I am kind of a sucker for this sort of “behind-the-scenes” stuff. Hell, I’m all about behind-the-scenes: I do tech for theatre; I’m not exactly interested in being put up on the stage and spotlighted. And a chance to look at how to write or draw for comics? I’m there. Though I suspect this won’t be as in-depth as I’d like it to be.

Tor #4: “female companion” is to “eventual screw” as “Tor” is to…?

DC Special: Cyborg #4 I really want to take issue with Starfire’s costume. But at this point the only thing I feel like I can articulate is that she and Darkfire has an interesting inversion–in that the evil sister is the one that’s wearing more.

Teen Titans #62 Since when has Robin’s cape had that weird feather patterning? His upper chest also looks totally out of proportion to the rest of his torso, too, though that might just be the shadows?

Titans #5 made me believe that yes, Starfire’s costume could indeed get worse, though I do like that she’s got a bit of muscle on her here. I kind of wish either Starfire or Oracle would just tell Nightwing to quit jerking the both of them around and pick one or even neither. God knows he deserves it–it’s like he gets paired with whichever of the two is more convenient for the title he’s in. I do like how they’re all blue-lit by the waters they’re in, though. …I just realized that this cover’s pretty racy, isn’t it? I mean, she’s straddling his lap/legs, he’s about to grab her breasts…she’s nearly undressed as it is…whoo.

Batgirl #2 I’ve already talked about why I don’t like Annalea/think she’s unnecessary–presumably this new young woman raised by David Cain is she. If it’s a whole new character I may–not cry, exactly, but possibly rant some more. The Patterns on her outfit look vaguely like Chinese decorations from the new year; those weird geometric shapes that at first look like a random bunch of symmetrical lines but are actually the character for, say, happiness (x2). I’d say it was cool, if I thought that whoever designed her outfit was even thinking in that direction. I’d say that probably-Annalea wearing red was amusingly ironic, given that red is traditionally a color of auspiciousness and good luck, except I suspect the designer just wanted “vaguely threatening” and picked some color-shorthand to do it in. Oh, whatever. I’m all talked about about her (maybe there can be something with Shiva? About family and Cass’ dysfunctional one?). Moving right along…

All-Star Superman #12 Hate the colors, but I like the sight of Luthor casually strolling through the air while he nonchalantly burns some luckless peon to a scorched husk with his laser vision. I keep feeling like this whole composition is like a homage to something, but I’m not sure what. Nice chin, Supes.

Supergirl #32 The idea of Supergirl telling a little kid that she’ll cure his cancer is a really good one, storytelling wise. It emphasizes her heroism, compassion, and desire to do good–but also her naivete about her limits, the limits of those around her, and also how much she doesn’t yet know about Earth (and its medicine). I wonder how this storyline will turn out? Also, I see she has some noticeable muscle. Good for her! (No, I don’t know why I’m fixating on that right now.)

Batman and the Outsiders #10 When did Thunder get electrical powers?

Birds of Prey #121 GOD that’s a freaky cover. From the Joker’s laughter (to the point of tears how freaky is that?) to the gun–is it going through the boy’s head or is it just in front or behind him? You cannot tell! Kudos to…ah yes, Stephane Roux. For a moment I thought it said Stephanie and made :D! face. Oh well.

The Brave and the Bold #16 Ooooh Lois ain’t gonna like that.

The Flash #243 What I like about this cover is that your eye focuses on the Flash. And then you start following his trail and then you realize holy shit it goes all over all the buildings in the background and then your eye gets pulled back to him and that just makes the impact of the abruptness of his stop before you, the viewer, that much more powerful.

Green Arrow/Black Canary #11 Hey Mia, nice to see you’re not in limbo anymore! …also, why isn’t Black Canary billed first? What happened to alphabetical order? To aesthetics of sound? I say Black Canary/Green Arrow rolls off the tongue better.

Infinity Inc. #12 I like their uniforms quite a bit, actually, even if they’re a bit dull compared to the rainbow that is the rest of the DCverse. Though I am wondering why that be-goggled chick requires a corset to fight crime. It doesn’t even offer any support!

Legion of Super-Heroes #45 O HAI BRAINY. I like how you can’t tell whether he’s shouting orders or screaming in pain. Also, notice how the arrangement of the planets curves just right so your eye hits upon Brainy’s head as last in the sequence? And at the other end– Star Boy’s! How cool is that?

And that’s all she wrote!

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No Solicitation Allowed – August 2008 (Marvel Edition)

May 21, 2008 at 7:32 pm (Comics Issue #427) (, )

So, August solicits are out. I have things to say! Thus, I shall say them. Let’s start with Marvel, shall we?

Marvel Illustrated: the Three Musketeers #3 (of 6) has a reeeeally nice cover. Gorgeous shades of purple, nice textures to the lady’s clothing, all very distinct. The fan and the cane make a nice contrast between delicacy and power–canes are normally used by men, yes? The muted colors of the blood are really nice, almost blending into the shadows. You only notice it when your taking in the lady’s clothes and skirt train, and then…wait, why’s that bit red? And that bit? And that bit? And…yeah. Nice and subtle. Thumbs up!

Ultimate Spider-Man #125 has a cover that is for some reason disturbingly sexual. I think I’ve hung around slashers too much; I’m seeing it EVERYWHERE now argh argh argh. Venom was made for tentacle-rape fics. I mean, Spidey doesn’t look like he’s fighting too hard, does he? It’s tough to tell if he’s panicked, what with the mask…

Amazing Spider-Man #567 looks like it’s time for a new characters! The assassin lady–the Brand New, it looks like her name is–has an awesome design. She’s an assassin who’s after Spidey (and DD) but she’s not dressed like a whore? SCORE! I can even believe she’s got some armor on with that jacket! The animals around her seem to insinuate that she’s a big game hunter of a sort, and yeah the whole big-game-hunter-moving-on-to-better-prey-which-is-(super)humans has been done before, but come on. She looks cool. Let’s see what the Brand New has to bring to the table. First tentacles and now bondage? Tsk tsk, Petey.

Amazing Spider-Man Family #1 has a cover by Adi Granov (nice to know his name now). I like how the title’s incorporated into the cinema marquee, but the cover…well, it’s really nice art, gorgeously detailed and rendered in moody colors that I like, but…for all its technical perfection, his covers never seem to have enough movement. I mean, I see the webbing and the twisting of his costume and the implication of Spidey swinging through the air, but…it feels like I’m looking at a wax statue. A static figure that’s shaped to look like it ought to be moving, but isn’t really.

Spider-Man Summer Special has a few impending wardrobe malfunctions it seems. It is really necessary to have nipples showing on a comic book cover? These are supposed to be heroines worthy of respect, after all. Nipples through the fabric means no bra means breasts flying all over the place. Not very practical. I do like how they used Jean Grey’s X-Men: First Class outfit, though.

True Believers #2 (of 5) has Richard Reed looking like he was drugged on the way to the police station. Um. Okay.

Marvel Adventures Spider-Man #42 has Puma! …who looks suspiciously like Sabretooth, who was recently killed. HMM. Oh, and it’s by Michael Ryan! I like his art, yes I do. You can really see the differences in build between Spidey and Puma; Puma’s all huge and built and more for brute strength but Spidey’s lean and lithe and obviously meant to lean more towards speed and agility.

Secret Invasion: Inhumans #1 (of 4) HI STEPHEN SEIJIC I think you might be my new favorite painterly artist for covers. This is such a cool concept; having Medusa’s hair flowing all around her almost like mounds of silk as she holds her husband’s suit really emphasizes the intimacy of the moment and WHOO DAMN how can anyone paint that much hair and have it look so consistently gorgeous? It’s speaks a lot to her struggling to hold on to what she has left of Black Bolt and the way she’s almost cradling the suit–her arms make it look like she’s almost holding a baby. Like the suit is an unformed piece of Black Bolt, waiting to blossom into the real deal. HOWEVER. I’m wondering why she has to be naked. I mean, it does make her limbs pop even more against the rich red of her hair, but…I’m wondering whether or not the same cover could have been done with her dressed. Also, if she’s supposed to be out looking for Black Bolt, then shouldn’t the cover give her a more…active role? I mean, having her hold his suit is a really nice effect, but I dunno, I’d kind of think that having her marching off to find some answers as to his whereabouts would be really effective and more fitting. Not that the cover’s not great, artistically, but thematically…I’m having some wonderings about it.

Secret Invasion: X-Men #1 (of 4) O HAI X-23 you sure look a lot older than teenaged. What’s with her bad fighting stance? Also, why is her outfit basically a feminized version of Wolverine’s? She does have an identity as a separate character, you know! She’s not just a chick with Wolverine’s powers (and they’re not even identical; she doesn’t have the skeleton, just the adamantium claws). *dark mutters* Oh, and can we just settle on a costume for Emma Frost already? The X-symbol is kind of an eyesore against the white of her costume and OH LOOKIE HERE it draws attentions to her chest, not the mention the lacing–lacing, I ask you, WHY? She’s not a hired dancer or member of the Hellfire Club anymore. Her Astonishing outfit was revealing, true, but it was also revealing in a classier way and definitely a step up from her New X-Men outfit. I liked it as is! What’s with the changes?

Secret Invasion: Runaways/Young Avengers #3 (of 3) All I can say is that this triptych cover is pretty freakin’ cool. Michael Ryan has a style I really like; I think he’s improved since his Academy X days! Certainly I have less trouble believing his teenaged guys (aka Chase) are actually teenaged. I see Chase has Fistigons again! I wonder why? And how?

Nova #16 OMG NOVA WHERE ARE YOU LEGS?

Ms. Marvel #30 Like Adi Granov, Greg Horn’s covers are detailed, realistic, and well rendered. But they have the same lack of movement and aren’t quite as good. Also, I’m pretty sure spandex wouldn’t really stretch that way across a woman’s breasts. Just sayin’.

Captain Britain and MI:13 #4 Yes Brian, I am looking at your crotch; no I didn’t need the arrow pointing the way. But thanks anyway.

X-Factor #34 Could you cut She-Hulk’s leotard any higher? I mean, wtf, they’re going even higher than her hips. How the fuck does she fight in that thing?

She-Hulk #32 makes me wish there was a cover with an unconscious man about to be crushed by the title of his cover, because I’m pretty damn sure if there was they wouldn’t be lying around like they’re in the throes of passion the way she is. Also, I see she now has pants. Hooray.

Skrulls vs. Power Pack #2 (of 4) W. T. F.

Runaways #1 happened already, didn’t it? Whatever. HEY RAMOS XAVIN’S ACTUALLY A GIRL, OKAY? Just makin’ sure you got the memo! I really want to like this cover at least a little bit the fact that MOLLY is flashing a little underwear is kind of ruining it. Also, Xavin should not be a guy here! XAVIN SHOULD NOT BE A GUY HERE.

NYX: No Way Home #1 (of 6) has my favorite cover so far, hands down. The washed out blue tint of it all is just gorgeous and really brings the feel of desolation, of isolation, of being down–but the colors of their clothing and Kiden’s face say they’re not out yet and never will be if she has her way. I gotta find the original NYX! We can has X-23 cameo? Please? :D

Patsy Walker: Hellcat #2 (of 5) Yes, Iron Man, sending one person to police an entire state was a super good idea.

Astonishing X-Men #26 features Logan as he takes on his new codename. No longer Wolverine–now, he is…the Crimson Chin! With Cleft, the Boy Chin Wonder!

Uncanny X-Men #501 Memo to Greg Land: PIXIE’S HAIR IS NOW MOSTLY BLACK. ALSO, IT IS NOT STYLED THAT WAY. I’d add more asking why is she so helpless looking, what with her pixie dust (which could take care of the thugs right there) and her Soul Knife and her handy-dandy teleportation spell, but I’m beginning to realize that which the entire world probably already knows.

Cable #6 That is one small baby.

New Exiles #9 & 10 has a badass picture of Psylocke. Or her AU self. Whatever.

GeNext #4 (of 5) The plushie is kinda cute, though her buns looks totally unrealistic. Also, one of my pet peeves: female heroes in skirts. Especially if they can fly.

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