Category Archives: Comic Books

‘The Gifted’ Trailer Brings the X-Men Universe to Fox TV

A family is forced to go on the run with a couple’s children display mutant powers. Written by Burn Notice’s Matt Nix and directed by X-Men helmer Bryan Singer, The Gifted comes this fall to Fox TV on Monday nights.

The cast includes: Stephen Moyer, Amy Acker, Sean Teale, Jamie Chung, Coby Bell, Emma Dumont, Blair Redford, Natalie Alyn Lind, Percy Hynes White

Long Beach Comic Con – The Best Alternative to the Annual Mess in San Diego

Fans of all things geek, Long Beach Convention Center plays host to the Long Beach Comic Con on Saturday and Sunday (September 27 and 29) for its annual celebration. Long Beach Comic Con is a celebration of comic books and pop culture that showcases the exceptional work of talented writers, artists, illustrators and creators all types of pop-culture. Don’t miss this event that will soon rival even San Diego Comic Con. Visit for additional information and to purchase tickets for this weekend’s event.

Special Guests

This weekend’s convention features an amazing lists of the best creators of comic books and panels. Guests include: Len Wein (Creator of Wolverine), Ben Templesmith (30 Days of Night), Bill Farmer (Walt Disney Hall of Fame Voice Actor), Matt Hawkins (Think Tank), Laura and Michael Allred (Marvel’s Silver Surfer), Pierre Bernard, Jr. (Conan O’Brien) and Mike Mignola (Hellboy). Just to name a few.


Long Beach, Con will present more than 80 panels over the weekend. These panels run the gamut of wide variety of pop-culture topics, including:

  • Celebrations of comic book icons Archie, Batman, The Crow and Hellboy.
  • Conversations about pop culture phenomenon The Katniss Chronicles: Hear the Girl on Fire; Honest Trailers; Robot Chicken.
  • Topical and timely discussions about diversity in the comic book industry: Prism Comics panel, It’s a Queer, Queer World!; Race & Comics; She Makes Comics: A Documentary Celebration of Women in Comics; and more. And the details for the Dwayne McDuffie Award will be formally announced Saturday, September 27 at 10:30 AM.
  • Animation panels dedicated to popular cartoons and appearances by Greg Weisman and Man of Action’s Joe Casey, Joe Kelly, Duncan Rouleau and Steven T. Seagle.
  • Kids programming including interactive panels where kids can learn how to draw the Simpsons and Futurama characters and “how to draw your dragon.”
  • Cosplay panels.
  • Horror programming, with a panel moderated by Horror Writers Associated and a panel sponsored by the films VHS Viral and ABCs of Death 2 with new trailers for both films.
  • A Young Adult panel featuring best-selling novelists Leigh Bardugo, Robin Benway, Cecil Castellucci, Melissa de la Cruz, Michael Johnston, and Margaret Stohl
  • A Banned Books Week discussion led by the Newport Beach Branch Library with bestselling writer Joshua Hale Fialkov and SALON contributor Samuel Sattin
  • #MakeComics workshops where aspiring writers and artists can learn from comic book professionals. Over two days, workshops will walk through the entire #makecomics process: from writing and drawing to running a Kickstarter and publicizing your work.

“We’re so excited for fans to experience the robust programming slate for Long Beach Comic Con,” said Phil Lawrence, Co-founder and Sales Director of Long Beach Comic Con. “It’s our most ambitious year to date for programing and we’re thrilled to offer panels that speak to the diverse interests and passions of comic book fans.”


If you’re into cosplay, Nerds Like Us will host the 2014 Long Beach Comic Con Cosplay Contest. The cost you contest will begin at 8:30 PM on Saturday, September 27. The panel of judges include: Host: Bernie Bregman, Nerds Like Us; Vegas Power Girl, Raychul Moore, Castle Corsetry & Reevz FX.

Prizes will be awarded in several categories: Best in Show, Best Hero, Best Villain, Best Youth (kids 12 and under) , Funniest, Best TV/Movie, Best Sci-Fi, and Judge’s Choice.

If you’re frustrated with the massive crowds and impossible to get badges of San Diego Comic Con, then you’ll want to be at the Long Beach Convention Center this weekend. Purchase tickets at the event or online at

Long Beach Comic Expo Spotlight on Secret City Geek Lab – Season 2 – Episode 28

Secret City Geek Lab brings you the latest in Geek News with your host Alan Ng. On today’s show, we feature the Long Beach Comic Expo. Held twice a year, it’s the perfect alternative to the crowds and badge shortages of San Diego Comic Con.

00:47 – What is Long Beach Comic Con?
03:45 – Geek Cred Web Series
07:22 – The Ballad of Sally Sprocket and Pistol Pete – Alejandro Lee (Illustrator)
11:43 – Get Blank – Justin Robinson (Author)

Publish Your Own Comic Book with ComiXology Submit – Long Beach Comic Con 2014

You’ve created a comic book and now you need to get in front of an audience. ComiXology Submit is the way to get your creation in front of comic book readers and see your title on the same page was the big boy’s titles.

ComiXology Submit: The Future of Self-Publishing. ComiXology is looking for the next big independent comic creator – is that you? since its launch at SXSW, comiXology Submit has released over 300 independent comic book series from celebrated indie creators and up-and-coming creators alike. In this tell-all panel, comiXology’s Chip Mosher is joined by Joshua Hale Fialkov, writer/co-creator of the comiXology Submit smash-hit series The Bunker, as they discuss how to be a part of the new self-publishing revolution in digital comics!

Original Sin – Marvel Event Press Conference

Marvel Comics recently held a press conference about the next big Marvel Events – Original Sin. The press conference featured writer Jason Aaron and Senior Marvel Editor Tom Brevoort.

What is Original Sin?

Original sin is an eight issue comic book event spanning the entire Marvel Universe. Writer Aaron describes it as a murder mystery that spans the entire Marvel Universe. Unlike past Marvel Events, Original Sin is not a cosmic event where world collide, but it’s an event that will touch every mainstream Marvel character in a deeply personal and emotion way.

Original Sin Issue 1 starts on the moon where the Watcher, Uatu, is found dead and discovered by Thor. When Captain America, original Nick Fury and the Avengers arrive, they discover that Alien technology has been stolen and the eyes of the Watcher have been removed and stolen as well.

What the eyes of the Watcher store are every secret and skeleton in the Marvel Universe and the killer will reveal these secrets in a giant bomb of information. Brevoort describes is as the worst secret held by TSA and TMZ. Watch exactly did the Watcher see and witness over the years.

Issue 2 ignites an explosion of information and its revelations will have a profound impact on everyone.

The eight issues of Original Sin will solve the murder mystery of “Who Killed the Watcher.” Who has the eyes? Why does he/she want all these secret exposed?  It is one complete story and you do not have to read the tie-ins.

There will be two teams of investigators. The public team will consist of Captain America, Nick Fury and the Avengers. They will follow the clues from the deepest caverns of earth to the far reaches of the cosmos, as well as a trip to alternate universes.

While the public follows the Avengers, there will also be secret team of investigators. Unlikely heroes will pair up including: Emma frost and Ant-Man, Winter Soldier and Gamora, Dr. Strange and Punisher. Who dares team-up with Deadpool?

What will happen in the tie-ins?

While the 8-issue core story attempts to solve the murder. The tie-in books will involve the repercussions of his secrets revealed. Every major character will have to face the question, what happens when your worst secret is revealed. The revelations of these secrets will change the life of every Marvel characters in a drastic way. It may change the way characters relate and feel about themselves and one another going forward.

For example, Captain America will learn that someone close to him has tampered with his memories and he doesn’t know who it is. Spider-man learns that someone else was bit by the same spider-man at the lab from issue 1. The identity of this character will be revealed and takes us on a journey to the very beginning of Spider-Man.

Thor, who discovers the Watcher’s body, his secret will impact not only his own book but the Loki series as well. Other stories include Nova, Fantastic Four and Deadpool. No mainstay will be left untouched.

Other revelations

Regarding Nick Fury, now that his son is taking more of a prominent role in S.H.I.E.L.D., Will this this be a swan song for the old Nick Fury? Breevort cryptically says if you want to feel this way, then feel this way.

The story of Original Sin has been floating around the Marvel offices since Fear Itself. When delving into the deepest, darketest secrets of the Marvel universe, editors had a concern that they might break a character too much. But that’s what makes compelling storytelling, creators were encouraged to head into dangerous territory and attack the core of who they are and what makes them who they are.

What secrets would be revealed? They were all discussed during the Marvel Retreats. It was up to creative team to give Aaron what secret they wanted revealed.

Watcher’s family will be addressed in Mighty Avengers tie-In.

Expect a big fight in issue 1 and another in issue 2.

8 issues twice a month from May to August, plus a zero issue about the Watcher and Nova by Mark Wade and Jim Cheung. It will reveal secrets about the Watcher and Nova perfect for anyone not familiar with the Watcher.

Why kill the Watcher? It was a compelling way to reveal the deepest darkest secrets of the Marvel Universe. There are two eyes and they will both come into play.
Issue #1 will have 8 variant covers from the best artist at Marvel.

ORIGINAL SIN #4 – Variant Cover by BUTCH GUICE
ORIGINAL SIN #6 – Variant Cover by PAUL RENAUD
ORIGINAL SIN #7 – Variant Cover by MIKE MCKONE
ORIGINAL SIN #8 – Variant Cover by JUNG-SIK AKN

All New X-Men #22.NOW – Comic Book Review

The first issue of the Trial of Jean Grey starts off strong as the Shi’ar attempt to take Jean Grey into custody. Bendis hits gold with an amazing discussion between Cyclops and Jean Grey.

The arrival of the original X-Men in the present sent shockwaves through the Marvel Universe, but we’ve only seen the effects on Earth. When alien races learn that Jean Grey, host of the destructive Phoenix Force, is back on earth, they do something about it. Now it’s up to the rest of the All-New X-Men and the Guardians of the Galaxy to save Jean Grey from twisted intergalactic justice! Don’t miss two of Marvel’s biggest franchises crossing over for the first time!

Published: January 22, 2014
Rating: Rated T
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Artist: Stuart Immonen

Who do you turn to when there’s no one to turn to? Jean Grey finds herself in that situation because no one can relate to her situation. Jean is the only one of the All New X-Men, who knows exactly what is going on. She knows all about the fates of her teammates and she can’t tell anyone.

All New X-Men #22 is the first issue of the Trial of Jean Grey. The alien race, the Shi’ar attempt to take Jean Grey into custody for crimes that her future self would commit, i.e. blow up an entire planet. As exciting as this bit of action is, the real action takes place in the cafeteria, where Cyclops and Jean have it out with Angel caught in the middle.

Jean, it seems, is carrying the weight of the world on her shoulders and Cyclops is trying to be a shoulder to cry on. Instead of accepting the help of her teammates, she feels she has to alienate herself from her team. Ahhh, teenagers.

This is a great issue all around. Bendis has never been better, especially when it comes to writing teenage angst. Stuart Immonen is a master at telling a story with only pictures and the lines from Wade von Grawbadger are sharp and clean. The colors of Marte Gracia does nothing but enhance the drama that is already there.

The next act of the Trial of Jean Grey is in Guardians of the Galaxy, where Sara Picelli takes over the art.

The Dark Hours with Kyle Roberts from Long Beach Comic Con

Secret City Geek Lab interviewed The Dark Hours co-writer/co-illustrator Kyle Roberts at Long Beach Comic Con. He talked about his book The Dark Hours and the challenges in creating your own comic book, getting your story on paper and then promoting to readers.

For more information about The Dark Hours, visit their website at

Superior Spider-Man #1 – Marvel Comic Book Review

Writer: Dan Slott
Artist: Ryan Stegman
Rating: 4-Stars

Full Disclosure – I was not an avid reader of the Amazing Spider-Man, but I have a good knowledge of Peter Parker and Spider-Man. At least, enough to get me by.

*** Spoiler Alert *** – I’m going to spoil only the important plot points to this issue.

In order to prepare for Superior Spider-Man, I read Amazing Spider-Man 798-700. Now the spoiler. Doctor Octopus has managed to swap bodies with Peter Parker. Doctor Octopus now controls the body of Peter Parker and has access to all his memories. In a last ditch attempt to take back his body, Peter Parker fails but manages to transfer his emotional memories to Doc Ock. As “Peter Parker” dies, Doc Ock now understands and embraces the concept of “Great Power come Great Responsibility.” Doc Ock now vows to fight for good and Peter Parker in the body of Doctor Octopus dies.

There has been a lot of controversy around this. Since I’m not a full-time reader, I really don’t have a dog in this fight. The first argument is how can Marvel kill off one of their flagship characters and as will all superhero comics, when will they bring him back.

Personally, I’m intrigued by the story line. If DC can revamp their entire line of heroes, why can’t Marvel do it to just one? In Superior Spider-Man, you see a Peter Parker with attitude. He becomes incredibly ambitious in his research and his responsibility as a hero.

The new Peter Parker has a new life. No longer a dying decaying villain  Superior Spider-Man has something to live for. He can date again. He has access to the best scientific resources available.

With this new found life, comes a new found aggressiveness. His design new weapons for Spider-Man, such as finger claws and electronic devices to gain the upper hand on his opponents, in this issue, the New Sinister Six.

With all of this change, there is one noticeable personality flaw of the new Peter Parker…He’s a “dick.”

I’m on board with Superior Spider-Man at the moment, but readers always had sympathy for Peter Parker, will they have sympathy for Doc Ock? That’s the question that the book will need to answer over the next few books.

For those of you completely frustrated with the fate of Peter Parker, read The Superior Spider-Man and you will find hope.