A little more DC!

In the midst of my Star Wars Easter weekend, I’ve managed to make some room for more DC greatness as well, more comics and TV series, and the news coming out of WonderCon about the new Rebirth event coming this summer!

You may remember, back when I read the Batman event comic, Night of the Owls, I was particularly impressed with Batwing? Well, I bought the first issue of his ongoing series and read it a couple of weeks back. The Lost Kingdom deals with Batwing on the trail of Massacre, a villain who has been trawling across Africa killing off members of the super hero team called The Kingdom. This team had come together in the recent past to fight against the injustices being done to the continent, but had gone into retirement. Batwing fails to save a couple of members, so decides to try to get ahead of Massacre by learning where the remaining members of the team are before the crazed Massacre can get to them. Along the way, we learn through flashbacks about the early years of Batwing, otherwise David Zavimbe. It’s a really interesting comic, particularly because, while I was aware of the character, I knew nothing about him. While I can’t claim to be an expert on the subject matter, I thought the Africa-centric storyline was handled in what felt like a mature and sensible manner. I’m sure there’s a lot more that can be said on that, but if nothing else, I thought it was really interesting to see a comic book set somewhere other than America. There’s also a tremendous sense of history that comes out of discovering who this super hero team were, which is remarkable given this is an entirely original story!

I finally got round to volume two this weekend. In the Shadow of the Ancients picks up right where volume one left off, and I’ve read some criticism of the split here, as the storyline isn’t resolved until this book, leaving the first part a little disjointed. Though it made me buy the second book without thinking too much about it, so I guess there’s something to be said for the marketing there. The mystery of who Massacre is is solved, in a fairly shocking fashion, though the book then features four more issues that don’t reference this at all. Made me feel a bit like “Wha?” there – though I’m very much going to get Enemy of the State to see if this storyline continues.

There are a couple of fairly odd moments in the rest of the book. We have a two-part story that follows Batwing’s aide Matu Ba (Batwing’s Lucius Fox) in trouble, where Batwing calls in the Justice League International to help. I feel a bit like I might be missing some tie-in there, but anyway. They manage to rescue Matu Ba from Lord Battle (most of Batwing’s enemies so far have had silly names, but whatever), exposing a plot that somehow had the involvement of the Penguin. I have to be honest, I didn’t quite follow that one, but I’ve always liked him since Danny DeVito took on the role, so it was nice to have him included all the same. The book ends with a sort of throwback-story where we learn yet more of Batwing’s backstory, a short issue that felt highly similar to that at the end of the Flash volume two.

And speaking of the Flash…

The Flash

I’ve finally gotten round to watching the TV series, you guys! I honestly don’t know why I hadn’t gotten round to this sooner. Perhaps because I couldn’t make it through the first episode of Arrow all those years ago, and thought it might ruin my favourite superhero… Well, anyway, three weeks ago I sat down to give it a go, and since that first episode I was just bowled over by how awesome it is! I’m currently trying to pace myself, as I’m watching it on DVD so don’t want to run out of good stuff too soon. I think I’ve watched about half the first season so far, getting up to Fallout last night. So far, it’s been amazing, and pretty much every episode has had me both laughing out loud and glued to the screen. I have to say, it’s rare for me to find a show these days that I can instantly fall in love with, and simultaneously want to just watch it all, and also pace myself and savour it forever, but The Flash has certainly got me hooked!

Something that particularly surprised me was how much I enjoyed the Arrow crossovers – to the point that I’ve also now bought season one of that show on DVD…

This weekend at WonderCon, DC have given the details on the new Rebirth event that will be kicking off this coming May. io9 have helpfully collected a number of tweets from DC’s Twitter account showing the new books coming out under this banner, and while I’m pleased to see Flash continues with his own series (given he’s already had a Rebirth story, I was a little concerned he might not make it), I’m so excited to see Dan Abnett will be working on a new Aquaman story! Of course, I was bowled over by how awesome Geoff Johns made the character, so it’ll be a hard act to follow, but this should be pretty great, and I’m certainly looking forward to it!

I prefer to read these things in trade paperback form, but I’m really interested in seeing what this is all about, so have preordered the inaugural issue there… Exciting times!

Hobby Progress, week 12

I’ve been doing this for twelve weeks now, can you believe?! It’s been pretty great for motivation, I’ll say that – the thought of not having anything to publish here of a Sunday has really helped to get me painting, and I need all the help I can get sometimes! So many unfinished projects have been languishing since the summer last year, and this week, I’m taking a look at quite a few! But let’s start with Space Marines.

Last week’s update featured some progress on some Ultramarines, as well as the suggestion of doing something fantastic with the Novamarines successor chapter. Well, take a look!

Hobby Progress 12

First up, let’s talk Novamarines. These guys look amazing in artwork for the game, and I really want to get a small squad together, but having done these two guys to just this point, I’m no longer sure I want to do a full squad! The quartered scheme is certainly different, and while it’s always fun to try out new stuff, I’m already wondering if it’s beyond me! This is just a base coat of Kantor blue and washed with Drakenhof Nightshade, as well as a recess wash of Nuln oil on the white parts. It took almost an hour to get these two painted to this point, as I was trying to be so damn careful to get the lines straight etc. I want to do a third, as I have a sergeant-type guy who was built out of specific bits so as to be the Novamarines sergeant, but whether I’ll get all five done will possibly remain to be seen. The tutorial I’d found seems to leave the blue at this stage, and just edge-highlights from there, but I feel this is far too dark for my liking, so I’m thinking I might go for Alaitoc blue, with some Hoeth blue highlights. The armour is described (somewhere) as cobalt, so I’m thinking it needs to be quite bright. We’ll see, anyway! Suffice it to say, I’m glad I haven’t planned an army of these guys!

Hobby Progress 12

The Ultramarines are coming along nicely – I’ve actually been doing some work on the other two as well, though they’re nowhere near as far along as these chaps. I’ve been feeling a bit down on them for the past couple of days, in part because of the blue-ness they have. This sounds weird, but when I see the model being blue, with a blue base, it just looks weird, and I wonder if I’ll ever finish it. By painting the base like this, I suddenly feel like they’re almost done. It’s clearly a psychological thing!

Hobby Progress 12

I hate painting eyes, but have done them on all of the Ultramarines and the Deathwing I have going on right now! They’re not perfect, but I’m hoping that the Carroburg crimson wash has helped to define the lens enough that any overspill onto the face can be seen as a glow-effect, anyway! So they’re coming along. I think I might have to do the bases for these guys as well soon, as that’ll help make them look a lot more complete than they have been! There are still a lot of small details to do, of course, and I think it really needs a concerted effort to get done. But for now, they continue to plod along, slowly but surely.

I’ve been having something of a basing extravaganza yesterday, where I took a whole bunch of models that were almost done, some except for the bases, and over the course of about four hours, got them sorted there. For many, it’s now just a case of some small details before they’re finished.

Yes, folks, it’s Necrons! In my end of February post, I shared a picture of my waiting area, with a whole host of models in varying stages of completion, and most of these are Necrons. Among other things, I had ten Immortals that needed serious attention, five more that just needed basing, and ten Lychguard that needed some kind of attention, including basing. Having spent so long with a variety of different models, it felt really great to be back with models that I’m not only familiar with, but know I can pretty much churn out fairly quickly.

Hobby Progress 12

These chaps are now pretty much finished, I might drybrush some green onto the snow at the rear, to simulate the glow of the weapons, but that’s it. I have another squad, with tesla carbines, who are very close to completion, but in all, I think I now have six squads of Immortals painted up. At some point, I hope to really get into playing 40k, and my dislike of the Necron Warrior model has led to my having these guys as my troop choices. Well, anyway!

Hobby Progress 12

Finally, we have this big guy. My local GW store is doing a paint it purple (and paint it black) competition next week, so I thought it’d be the perfect excuse to finish off at least one of my Ogres! I’ve had this guy sitting there waiting for so long now, it’s untrue – the base colours were all done some time last year, and the green base was done over the last August Bank Holiday weekend. However, there have been a number of small, maddening details that remained incomplete. Notably the hair. I can’t tell you how many philosophical musings I’ve had about “what colour would hair be if your skin is purple?” I’ve finally hit upon this blue colour, done the same way as I do the crests for my Stormcasts – maybe the crests are made from dead Ogors! Well, anyway. I don’t think he’s going to win any awards, but it’s been a great impetus to finally get one of these chaps done! Now that I’ve seen him, maybe I’ll get some more finished, as well!

All in all, it’s been a really fun week for painting! I think I like to have this variety of models on the go – not too big that it puts me off doing anything, but enough that I don’t get bored doing the same colours over and over again. Anyway, it’ll be the end of the month again next time, so I’ll probably have another retrospective-type of post. I’m certainly hoping to be progressed with the Novamarines, and also have more done to the Deathwing and Ultramarines.

Until next time!