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Monday, June 24, 2013

The Fire and Water Podcast, Episode 56

The official podcast of THE AQUAMAN SHRINE and FIRESTORM FAN

Episode 56 - This Is The End

This time around Shag and I welcome a special guest, fellow podcaster and comics blogger Luke Jaconetti! Luke runs a Hawkman blog, so he understands the pain of having your favorite character's series cancelled...over and over and over again. We cover all the cancellations of our respective characters and discuss some of our thoughts. So strap on your wings and prepare for Aquaman, Firestorm, and Hawkman...to be cancelled again.

Also, you can leave a comment on our sites:
THE AQUAMAN SHRINE - http://www.aquamanshrine.com
FIRESTORM FAN - http://firestormfan.com
FIRE AND WATER PODCAST TUMBLR - http://fireandwaterpodcast.tumblr.com

Have a question or comment? Drop us a line at firewaterpodcast@comcast.net

Be sure to check out Luke's blogs and podcasts:
Being Carter Hall blog - http://beingcarterhall.blogspot.com/
Earth Destruction Directive podcast - http://twotruefreaks.com/shows.php?show=9
Vault Of Startling Monster Horror Tales Of Terror podcast - http://twotruefreaks.com/shows.php?show=26
El Jacone's Comic Book Bunker blog - http://ljaconesbunker.blogspot.com/

Subscribe via iTunes: http://itunes.apple.com/podcast/the-fire-and-water-podcast/id463855630

Opening theme, "That Time is Now," by Michael Kohler.

Closing music by Daniel Adams and Ashton Burge of The Bad Mamma Jammas! http://www.facebook.com/BadMammaJammas

Thanks for listening! Fan the Flame and Ride the Wave!


Designer Daddy said...

Okay, so just for clarification, Aquaman hasn't been cancelled has it?

Earth 2 Chris said...

^No but, I think Rob has a Cancellation Clock at the ready Geoff Johns steps off the book.

This was a fun episode, despite the downer subject matter, as Luke put it. Also interesting that these characters have been revamped so many times. Maybe DC should take a harder look at Aquaman's success. Maybe there is something to this whole "classic" approach thing. I mean no one has tried the classic Silver Age Hawkman since 1987 or so, right? And when was the last time Ronnie Raymond and Martin Stein were Firestorm?

Oh, you guys forgot a live-action Hawkman in-between Legends of the Super Heroes and Smallville: The infamous Baby Ruth commercial! This was the Avatar, Post-Zero Hour Hawkman to boot! Shows how much DC thought of the character at the time to lend him out for such ridicule.


Agam said...

May 2013 from Diamond had Aquaman #19 at #25 and Aquaman #20 at #30. TWO Aquaman issues ahead of Wonder Woman, Flash, Green Arrow, Teen Titans... not to mention Wolverine, Captain America, Fantastic Four and others at the competition. Plus way ahead of the newest wave of DC debuts like the Movement and Green Team. I think Geoff Johns or not, Aquaman is safe for a while.

Luke said...

Like I said -- It's a Golden Age for Aquaman which will never end!

Diabolu Frank said...

7. Rob offers one of the many good reasons why the passing of Carmine Infantino went unacknowledged by yours truly. I disagree with Rob that cancellation #1 was the worst thing to happen to Aquaman, though. Green Lantern/Green Arrow bit the dust around that time, but was successfully revived later in the decade. Aquaman was at a creative high during his own '70s revival, and he was sustained as an integral part the the DCU in JLA across the lean years. I'd argue that the worst thing to happen to Aquaman was his piss poor late Bronze Age strips and ouster from the League ahead of the 1986 mini-series. This led to Aquaman remaining marginalized for the second half of the '80s and early '90s, coupled with more weak solo attempts and a compulsion to reinvent the character for the Chromium Age. Had the DC Implosion not cut short the Skeates/Aparo run, and if the rotten hacks that followed not sullied the character so thoroughly, he might have gotten the same treatment as Firestorm in the early '80s instead of being rendered toxic.

8. Aquaman seems to favor a disastrous run followed by something cool that dies young because of the damage already done. The Pozner/Hamilton mini-series was followed by that pill by Giffen/Fleming/Swan, which did the decent ongoing "maxi-series" no favors. I didn't read enough of Larson to revile him, but Jurgens/Epting was still clearly superior and going places. I was loving Arcudi & Gleason, then Sword of Atlantis ruined that, but I dug the zany final year with Williams & McManus. Obviously Howards Mackie and Porter couldn't follow Geoff Johns worth a damn, and Gates/Neves couldn't pull Aquaman back from the brink, despite a valiant effort.

Diabolu Frank said...

11. Wonder Woman has had numerous lapses in publication for a few months here and there during creative rethinks. She carried two titles until 1951, ditching Sensation Comics for the three issues it became a horror anthology before cancellation. When her TV show was on, she pulled extra duty in World's Finest Comics and Adventure Comics (pulling off all three in 1978,) but that was all over by 1980. Her first eponymous volume ended with #329 in 1986 after years of poor sales and high turnover in creative teams. It took over a year for Perez to launch Vol. 2, and there was a four month publishing gap when he quit unexpectedly over DC's handling of War of the Gods. #226 was the last issue of that volume, but that was immediately followed by a new #1, which happened again in the New 52. So basically, her only serious series death was in '86.

Diabolu Frank said...

19. The problem with the McLaughlin/Hooper run is that it was soft in every way. The talent was unproven, and they were trying to do a long form, emotionally cathartic story dealing with fifteen year old plot threads in a mature but unsatisfying way. Do not mention Black Manta in the context of avenging Arthur Junior if you're not going to kill the maniac. I'm sorry, but picking up one of those dynamic Kevin Maguire covers and opening it to find poorly colored emo funk was a huge turn-off. Plus, the late run turn toward eco-warrior was not only lame but also derivative of John Byrne's much more interesting (yet still blah) Namor series. Aquaman is in a bad place when he's in the second best book about aquatic super-heroing, and by a considerable distance.

Russell said...

Luke, I enjoyed your guest-spot. I echo your sentiments on several points, and disagreed often enough to make the discussions interesting. I thought Shadow War of Hawkman (which featured Aquaman as a guest) was a great book, but DC editorial messed with Tony Isabella and he took his idea and went home. I've chatted with him a few times and I think he could have done great things with the characters if he and Rich Howell had stayed. Oh, well. For a depressing theme you guys made it an entertaining 90 minutes. Good job.

PS I have no idea what the tag line at the end is from, sorry!

PPS Frank, are you trying to do some "Ninth metal" numbering system? Otherwise why have you skipped the first six numbers and started with (7.), then skipped around after that? I thought you maybe started your numbering on Firestorm Fan but....you didn't. You're weird, man. ;-)

rob! said...

Russell, the sting is from a sitcome called I Married Dora. Starring Elizabeth Pena, it was a truly unremarkable sitcom that got cancelled after 13 shows on Fox.

The ONLY thing it is remembered for is the form-busting final episode, where the characters admit they're in a show, and they've been cancelled. The final shot is them waving goodbye, as the camera zooms back to reveal the set, the crew, etc.

Diabolu Frank said...

ABC. It premiered one half hour after the debut of Full House. Could it really have been the worst of the two? I kind of had a little thing for Elizabeth Peña.

Sphinx Magoo said...

I gotta say... for a podcast titled "This is The End", I was expecting the worst. When I saw it in my podcast list, I thought "Oh no... They're ending my favorite podcast and they're just gonna play this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aGmAmJFUvzM for 90 minutes."

Thankfully, I was wrong.

"My favorite podcast" might be a bold statement, but it's pretty close to the truth. You guys focus on two of your favorite characters and base a series of podcasts and blog postings in a way I really admire. I mean, anyone can do that about characters like Superman and Batman because there's so much material already out there to draw from, but you guys are challenged right from the start and you guys have done a really great job at keeping those fan flags held high. That's really commendable.

Having Luke on to discuss Hawkman and Hawkwoman/girl on was great, but I think you guys really neglected to mention the impact that the Justice League animated series had on the popularity of the Hawkman Family. The switch from a Hawkman book to a Hawkgirl book seemed like a late start by DC to bring over some readers who knew Hawkgirl from the TV show. DC's always seemed a bit confused as to how to tie in to animated series and this seemed like one example.

To hear all this enthusiasm for Hawkman, I'm worried a bit about Rob. His energy and enthusiasm seem to be waning a bit. I'm not sure if it's because the Cancellation Clock Earth-2 Chris mentioned or if something else is going on, but there does seem to be a more glum tone to Rob's banter.

Still, it was a great episode.

While I was listening, there were points in the discussion where I was jotting notes in my head to bring up here, but I promptly forgot them. Luckily, it looks like Diabolu Frank got to some of them.

Anonymous said...

Well, it seems that I am rather late to this particular party, but I find that I am quite enjoying it upon my arrival!

Rob and Shag, I've only recently found time to start listening to this podcast, but you have won a fan with the shows I've heard. They have been universally entertaining, clever, funny, and charming. It reminds me of a pleasant afternoon discussing comics with friends! I've only been able to listen to a few shows, but I wanted to post some comments here and thank y'all both, and Luke in this instance, for a thoroughly enjoyable piece of audio entertainment and education. I would love to join in with y'all's discussions. It seems like quiet a bit of fun!

I do have to say that I just about had to give this podcast, the Shrine, and both of the erstwhile hosts up for lost in a fit of utter despair upon my listening to my first show....as a literary scholar, student of heroic fiction, and literate human being, I'm disappointed in the both of you! How can you not like Lord of the Rings! :) Ha, I am sure that you heard more than enough folks tell you how you're both crazy, so I won't beat that particular dead horse beyond that first stroke.

I also listened to the last Power Records cast, and that was a real treat. I've never listened to any of those stories, but as a big audio drama fan, both those stories were a very pleasant surprise.

As for this show, it was absolutely my favorite so far! Several others have said something similar, but it bears repeating that y'all did a remarkable job of making a great time out of what could have been a very depressing topic. This was a pretty fascinating study of the highs and lows of these three characters. In fact, while Aquaman is my favorite character, Hawkman is also at the top of my list, so this little journey through their collective histories was a lot of fun. It was delightful having Luke join the party, and the dynamic between the three of y'all was great. I'm a big fan of his Hawkman blog, and I've enjoyed watching his journey into fandom.

I think the cancellations that hurt me the most, albeit after the fact, given that I wasn't alive and/or reading the books at the time, are definitely the first volume of Aquaman. As Rob has said, the SAG run was amazing, and it was really just picking up speed when it met its tragic demise. In fact, the maddening circumstances of its cancellation make its end all the more pitiable. Rob's cagey remark upon the volume of Aquaman that most richly deserved cancellation sounds like we share the same feeling on that subject.

For Hawkman, it is definitely Volume 2 whose end leaves me heartbroken. It's sadly funny how both of the most promising runs of these two characters were ended by petty rivalries and editorial meddling. Isabella's turn on Hawkman really brought the character into his own, and I would give quite a bit if I could read his finished story. It's one of my white whales, like Dreamwave's Transformers series, one of those creative itches that will never be scratched.

For the record, I completely agree with Rob about the space cop version of Hawkman. It's the most straight-forward, easily accessible, and best fitting of the Hawk interpretations. It baffles me that there is such a resistance to it. I couldn't have said it better than Rob. If I were to tell that story, that's precisely the way I'd do it. In fact, that's exactly what I did in my own little DC project, which includes a Hawkman campaign modeled after the classic version. When I pick it back up, I've actually been thinking about drawing on Volume 2 for a few missions.

Well, thanks for producing something that is so interesting, guys!