Thursday, March 31, 2011

McDonald's Young Justice Toy Lineup Is A Few Fries Short Of A Happy Meal

While I was watching the Cartoon Network last weekend, I couldn't help but notice a commercial for the new McDonald's "Young Justice" Happy Meal toys.

I also noticed some aspects of the figure selection that are....problematic.

Let's review the eight featured figures, shall we?

Figures 1-4. Robin, Kid Flash, Aquaman and Superboy. - No problems with these figures by themselves, as all four are members. But you know who else is a member?


Miss Martian

Think for a moment on the common trait that these two characters have. Now look back at all eight figures and observe what trait they all don't have.

See the problem?

Admittedly, I'm not a huge fan of the Artemis character. I think it's in part because of that idiotic bare midriff costume that she wears despite having absolutely no invulnerability whatsoever. Or maybe the fact that the show created her as a new character from scratch, when there are several existing heroines (Mia Dearden, Cissie Jones-King, Cassandra Cain, a de-aged Donna Troy, Cassie Sandsmark, Anita Fite, even a de-aged Helena Bertinelli) who would have been a better fit for her slot. Even so, she is still a team member and should have been included.

But leaving out Miss Martian? She's been a member since the end of the show's premiere. Look at her powers: Super-strength, flight, mental telepathy, invisibility, telekinesis, shape-shifting. Any of those abilities by itself would be impressive, but she's got them all. And since Superboy's flight, vision and tactile telekinesis powers haven't manifested on the show yet, Megan is technically the most powerful member of the group. Plus, she's got her own shape-shifting spacecraft which serves as the team's primary transportational mode. So the fact that she deserved her own figure goes without saying.

Figures 5-6. Superman and Batman. No problem with these two having figures, other than that Miss M. and Artemis don't. Batman is the group's taskmaster and Superman is part of a running subplot with Superboy.


Figure 7.

Captain Cold

Really? Captain Cold???  Look, I like Len Snart as much as the next guy, but he was in only one episode (the premiere) for a grand total of 27 seconds. Miss M. had more time than him even in that episode, and there she was revealed in the show's last minute. Oh, and did I mention that she's the most powerful member of the group????

Worse, there's....

Figure 8.

Black Manta

Wait a minute. Hold the phone!

Fucking BLACK MANTA gets his own figure before Megan, the most powerful member of the group, does??????

Jesus, I'm not a girl and even I'm insulted!

(Courtesy of Seanbaby.)

My thoughts exactly, Sinestro!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Batman BOTB: "Battle Of The Superheroes" - My Review

I just saw the latest Batman: The Brave And The Bold episode featuring Superman last weekend, and let me tell you, it was the best thing ever.

How did this episode rock? Let me count the ways:

1. This.......

2. A cartoon version of this guy.

3. Lex Luthor's version of the Supermobile.

4. Luthor, Brainiac, Mr. Mxyzptlk, Metallo, and the Toyman. Also, whoever Kandorian Laser Guy is.

5. Nine Jimmy Olsen transformations.

6. Superdickery.

7. The following piece of dialogue:
    Jimmy: "Superman's become a di-"
    Lois: "-fferent person."

8. The beginning of the Lois Lane-Lana Lang feud.

9. "Mayor Swan".

10. The Super Pope Hat.

11. Reproduction of vintage Frank Miller panels like this.

12. The old identity switch.

13. Apparently, Batman can fly.

Only one thing would have made this episode better:

Friday, March 25, 2011

Avi Green is Shocked..... SHOCKED, I Tell You!

One of the lasting side effects of my participation in "Friday Night Fights" is following many of the blogs of my fellow competitors. That also means occasionally perusing the sites of the blogs in their link rolls.

One of those occasionally-viewed sites is The Four Color Media Monitor, which I discovered through fellow FNF fighters Snell and ShadowWing Tronix. This site is written by Avi Green, a Pennsylvania-born resident of Jerusalem, Israel. He generally has an unflinchingly negative opinion of the Big Two, their comics, and their related media projects (such as movies and TV shows). He also approaches these issues with a more conservative take than I would. No problem there. Many conservative comic bloggers, like the aforementioned Tronix, are very entertaining, and some (cough!*Engblom*cough!) are completely awesome. I can handle different opinions.

Green is very sensitive to perceived liberal bents in modern comics, and does not hesitate to point them out when he sees them. Sometimes, however, he's too sensitive, to the point of being completely ridiculous. Too ridiculous not to call him out on it.

I just read one of his posts entitled "Marvel Comics insults 9-11 Families and their supporters". Here, Green is very upset about the recent X-Factor#217, written by Peter David. Confession: I haven't actually picked up the issue yet, although reading about it has piqued my interest.

The scene below is patterned after last year's "Ground Zero Mosque" protests in New York, where this scene is also set.  David makes no secret what side he's on in that controversy.

At this point, buxom X-Factorite Monet swoops in to inform the crowd that "I’m a Muslim and a mutant!" This doesn't help matters.

Avi has some objections to this scene:

"What's absurd here is how it depicts a girl with cleavage, something forbidden in the most extreme Islamic regimes like Saudi Arabia, identifying herself as a Muslim (she's said to be of Algerian background not unlike Batman Inc's Nightrunner), shades of corrupt NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg's own knee-jerk blather. Though there are some Muslim women who don't dress in burqas/niqabs, the deeper you go into the Islamic world, the more oppressive it is to the point where the death sentence can be given to those who don't wear them, and the Koran condones it.

Avi would have a valid point here, if the scene were set in Saudi Arabia. It's set in New York. I find Monet's wide open cleavage here absurd not because she's a Muslim, but because she's a superhero, whose duties include intense fighting and, as this scene demonstrates, crowd control. The only function the open cleavage appears to serve is potential wank material for some readers.

The book also features a quote from J. Jonah Jameson.  Over the past few decades, Marvel seems to mostly rotate Jonah's character into two modes: 1.) Rabid obsessed Spidey-hating lunatic, and 2) a snarkier Perry White. It's the Perry mode that David uses in X-Factor#127, as Jonah states the following dialogue to the protesters:

"Funny thing: I keep hearing that from the far ends of the both sides: ‘We want our country back.’ Where’d it go? If neither side has it, then who took it? Guess what? I did.

 Me and my big white ancestors. We came rolling in and took it from the people who were here in the first place. And right after we did that, we kidnapped people from Africa to help us build it. And now we’re all worried that karma’s coming back to bite us on the keister. So we got to fight back because otherwise a hundred years from now, we might be the ones living in reservations and dying of small pox.

We can do that. Keep everyone we’re afraid of out. Send intruders back where they came from, or maybe put ‘em in camps like World War II, ’cause we’re afraid they’re terrorists. Or maybe… And it’s a crazy idea, I know… Maybe we can stop treating everybody like they’re the damned enemy."

Admittedly, Peter David is painting with a rather broad brush here. He makes a valid point about the ongoing fear of "The Other" in this country in particular, although he does veer off a little bit into Generalization City like when he addresses the motivations of white people. But still, some fair points made.

However, while PAD may paint with a broad brush, Green forgoes the paintbrush completely and goes straight for the roller, particularly with this gem:

"There may be moderate Muslims, but there is no moderate Islam."

Green follows this up by linking to a violent passage from the Quran. Yes, the Quran has its share of violent quotes, but I can name another religious text that contains its share of violent imagery: The Bible. And like Islam, many of Christianity's followers have commited cruel and violent acts in its name. Yet I'm not claiming that there is no moderate Christianity (I'm Christian myself). I'm perfectly willing to extend Islam the same consideration. Green apparently isn't.

Next, Avi lets his own feelings about the "mosque" controversy be known.

"That aside, Marvel has really gone beyond the pale this time. It's bad enough if they took blame-America standings with Captain America in past years. Now they're even going so far as to desecrate the victims of 9-11 and offend those closest to them by implying it is democratic Americans opposed to violent ideologies, shariah, and also a building project that desecrates the memory of their loved ones who are the problem, not the jihadists themselves...."

Green names several individuals and groups connected to 9/11 victims' family members who are against the "mosque", and claims X-Factor#217 insults them.  The problem is that he's only presenting one side of the controversy, his own. The truth is that even the 9/11 family members, whose numbers are easily 6000+, are split on this issue. For each of the people against it that Avi sites, there is undoubtedly a corresponding person who feels the exact opposite. They're 9/11 family members, too, no less victims than those on the other side of the issue. Green's showing them the same disrespect he claims David is showing those on Avi's side.

"...and they refuse to distinguish between religion and race."

Again, I disagree with Green. It's not that PAD is claiming no difference between race and religion, but rather he's simply focusing on their similarities, one of which is the wrongness of persecuting individuals on the basis of either one. And refusing to allow them the right of peacable assembly and the right to practice their religion counts as persecution. (Guess I'm not exactly hiding my views on the controversy, either.)

But it's his concluding paragraph that takes the cake:

Once, I thought he was smart enough to avoid this kind of propaganda, and he did once signal he respects Israel. Guess I was wrong. Now, he's plumbing new depths and suggesting he condones imposing sharia on America.

Now, that's a leap that would make the Incredible Hulk greener with envy. Green is wrong on several levels here.
First, Muslims are currently outnumbered in America by a ratio of roughly 130-to-1. Barring an extremely drastic population upheaval in the future, the idea that they could exert enough influence to impose Sharia law on the entire country is an absurd, paranoid fantasy. Hell, they don't even constitute enough of a voting bloc here to keep them from being scapegoated as a group by opportunistic right-wing politicians and media figures.
Second, Green makes the wild leap of asserting that, because David opposes said scapegoating, that David condones imposing sharia. This type of logic is just as crazy as saying that anyone who condemns misandry condones raping women, or that anyone who speaks out against misogyny condones voluntary male castration. Moreover, it shows a profound disrespect to David and others, like me, who don't share Green's views.

The real underlying problem with Avi's post, the one which inspired me to write this rebuttal, is its very premise. Avi actually seems shocked and appalled....SHOCKED AND APPALLED, I tell you!... that an X-Men comic actually spoke out against bigotry and discrimination.
Jeez! What's next, Avi? Outrage about Aquaman speaking out against pollution?
Oh, wait....!

Friday Night Fights: Fight Life - Prize Fight: Payback, Tim Drake Style!

Tonight is the final Prize Fight in our Friday Night Fights: Fight Life bout. According to our host, Spacebooger, tonight's entry  has to feature a fight scene from a comic where the hero takes down a group of random unnamed "thugs". The prize? A $5 Gift Card.

For tonight's round, I'm going with Tim Drake. And by "Tim Drake", I don't mean Robin, Red Robin, or even an alternate-future Batman. I mean plain old Tim Drake.

Tonight's throwdown comes from Robin#12, written by Chuck Dixon and illustrated by Phil Jiminez and John Stokes.

Synopsis: While seeing a movie with his girlfriend Ariana, Tim runs afoul of two bullies. After initially losing his cool, Tim concludes that he has to take the thugs' beating without putting up a fight and taking the risk of revealing his Robin skills in a highly visible public place. And take the beating he does. What he doesn't take into account is how humiliated he feels as a result of getting beaten up in front of his girlfriend, secret identity or no secret identity.

(For the record, I don't completely agree with Tim's logic here. Sure, I can see why he doesn't bust out all his fancy Robin moves, but can't he at least throw a few punches?)

Later that night, he goes out on patrol with Batman, hoping that beating up crooks as Robin will help him feel better. But it's just not the same. Beating up thugs as Robin doesn't ease Tim Drake's humiliation. But there's no chance that he's ever going to encounter those exact same bullies again while he's Tim Drake, let alone in a private setting with no other witnesses, right?



Without any other witnesses, Tim goes to town on the thugs.

Judging by this graphic beating, he must have really been pissed.

Feel better, Tim?

In honor of Tim's sweet revenge, tonight's fight song is "Vengeance" by the Blue Oyster Cult.

To vote for me or one of my fellow thug-bashing contestants, click here. And remember to vote!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Spitting Image...

This last Monday, Snell launched a complaint against some of the Image books. Now, here's one of my own.

Dear staff of INVINCIBLE:

I understand you want to print and respond to as many reader comments as you can in your letter column. I really do.

But this????


Above is part of the letter column of  the most recent INVINCIBLE issue. The letter font size above isn't shrunken down to fit my blog page. It's the actual size. If anything, it's a tad bigger than the original, although, admittedly, not as clear. This is actually the second or third issue with this reduced font. As this is the only Image comic I read, I don't know if other comics in their line share this font size.

Can you see the problem here?

What reader demographic are you targeting here? Lilliputians? The only people who can read this lettering comfortably are The Atom or his Image counterpart, Shrinking Ray.

Some of us readers are actually over 40. Don't make us have to break out the magnifying glass and bi-focals yet, OK?

Please make it stop.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Superman#709 Highlights The Problem With Wonder Woman...And She ISN'T EVEN IN IT.

There have been many times my blog posts have followed up on topics upon which other bloggers, particularly the ones on my blogroll on the right side, have previously covered extensively. When I write those types of posts, my goal is not to simply regurgitate what someone like, say, Sally or Snell has previously written, but to try to add my own unique insights. How successful I am is for you to judge.

This is one of those posts. My "victim" this time around is Ragnell. Fasten your seatbelts and bear with me.

J. Michael Straczynski's recent "Grounded" story arc in SUPERMAN has been the subject of derision from many bloggers, including yours truly. I had completely dropped the book, even after the news that JMS was leaving it and Chris Roberson would continue with the arc using JMS' story notes. Then I actually learned a little more about Roberson, first through some of his interviews on Superman and then through Chris SimsChris' review of Roberson's recent Superman/Batman 2-parter led me to pick it up. Like Sims, I thoroughly enjoyed it. Then I read his review of Superman#707. While I didn't buy that particular comic, I was intrigued enough to pick up the following issue, Superman#708.

As I wrote before, there were a lot of things I liked about it, among them the "Fortress of Solidarity", the Morrison and Maggin homages, and actually providing a reasonable explanation for Superman's "Grounded" behavior. A lot of Superman#708 was actually pretty good. Except for one huge gaping flaw.

To a Wonder Woman fan, my last paragraph had to sound like the equivalent of saying "Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, not a bad theater show, huh?" Because the comic gets Diana completely wrong.

To make a long story short, the latter part of Superman#708 has Supes crossing over with the "new" Diana and essentially showing her by his example how to be a hero. Granted, it's a Diana that's had her timeline changed. (Honestly, the "altered reality/timeline" plot is almost as shopworn as the "Superman doubts himself and loses his confidence" story. Can we put a 15-year moratorium on both? Please?) But even so, this part of the story rings extremely false for the Amazon Princess.

Why? Well, Ragnell has explained the biggest problems in a very insightful manner, particularly here, here, and here. She has such a profound understanding of the character that it's a pity she can't write the book herself. I'll just summarize the main problems here so as not to crib her act: 1.) It takes away Diana's self-determination and agency, both of which are key characteristics for her personality.  Superman has to show her how to be a hero? Please! This isn't necessarily a gender-specific blind spot of JMS'; he makes the same mistake with Clark in Superman: Earth One. 2.) This is portrayed as a vital crucible in the evolution of Diana's character, but it's not shown in her own book, but in Superman's. While I'm not 100% certain which plot elements are JMS' and which are Roberson's, I know from a recent Phil Hester interview that this portion was all JMS' idea.

But what REALLY underscores the problem with Wonder Woman's characterization is the next issue, in which she doesn't even appear. I'll give you a brief synopsis: Flash (Barry Allen) encounters a problem with some Kryptonian tech and gets Superman's help to solve it. They resolve the issue, but then they sit down and have a discussion about morality, the nature of right and wrong, and their respective legacies. Flash offers Supes his own insights and reassuring words and the two part ways.

The big problem is how Barry is treated. Barry's characterization itself was note-perfect: He behaves as an experienced, confident hero who knows his way and dispenses valuable advice. The real problem here is not that Barry is treated this way in this issue; it's that Diana wasn't in the preceding one.

Diana's role could have been filled easily enough by a newer character. She should have served Barry's role. She shouldn't be getting inspiration. She should be giving it. She's there to be the teacher, not the student.

Let's be honest here: DC can mouth the word "Trinity" all they want, but Wonder Woman has never been put on the same tier as Superman and Batman in her entire history. Nothing sums this up better than these two words: Sensation Comics.

For those of you younger and less familiar with DC history, Sensation Comics  is the comic series where Wondy first appeared. As Superman did in Action Comics and Batman did in Detective Comics. But unlike Action and Detective, Sensation did not continue with Wonder Woman after she got her own self-named comic. Is there a Sensation Comics book in circulation today? Are any of you old enough to remember when there was one? No? I rest my case.

In fact, she's never starred in a second regular book of any name, as opposed to Supes and Bats, who have consistently starred in at least two. She's never even had a regular spin-off book starring one of her sidekicks or supporting cast in the lead role. Contrast that with the other original JLAers. Even Flash had Impulse.

But even this disparity pales in comparison with how her history and supporting cast have historically been treated. Once again, here's a topic that Ragnell has covered before, and, not surprisingly, way more eloquently than I ever could. Even pre-Crisis, beginning with the Emma Peel period, Diana's occupation, base of operations and supporting cast has undergone constant reshuffling. (Morgan Tracy, anyone? How about I-Ching?)  Even journeyman Hal Jordan's cast hasn't gone through so many upheavals.

However, post-Crisis was much worse in this regard. At least pre-Crisis, they hadn't discovered the retcon.

And that's when things went completely off the rails for poor Diana. That's when the prevailing attitude with too many incoming Wonder Woman writers seemed to be "Past history? Fuck it! I'll do things my way!" For starters, lets discuss the Potter/Wein/Perez reboot, shall we?

Ragnell, who deserves the title of Wonder Womanologist, has demonstrated the problems with this reboot in too many posts to even cite. Rather than restate her words, allow me to compare and contrast it to John Byrne's Superman reboot, which took place at the same time. Can you imagine Byrne doing that to Superman? "OK, under our new continuity, Superman ,uh, never worked at the Daily Planet as Clark Kent. In fact, he....never became Clark. Oh yeah, and Lois? She'll be, like, 25-30 years older. And she won't be Supes' love interest, she'll be kind of a...mother figure. And...we'll have her marry.....Jimmy Olsen! Also? Jor-El raped Lara." Switch out Superman's characters and creators in my hypothetical with the corresponding Wonder Woman ones and that's what actually happened.

And it didn't end there. For example, that same John Byrne switched out Vanessa and Julia Kapetelis for his own versions of them. Even Diana herself is not immune. Hell, this will be the second time Wondy's been essentially demoted to a rookie.

Don't get me wrong; some change is always good to keep the character fresh. But it's like a building: too many WW creators (Simone and Rucka being among the few exceptions) are so obsessed with what they perceive as flaws in the foundations and the ground floor that they scrap the whole building and start over, rather than simply adding to the existing one with a new wing or floor. It's needlessly tearing down and rebuilding a structure that exceeded code in the first place.

And Wonder Woman  doesn't deserve this treatment. She's the grande dame of the DCU, perhaps second only to Lois Lane. DC needs to stop trying to fix her and appreciate what they have.

Friday Night Fights: The Green Gauntlet - Every Rose Has Its Thorn!

In honor of St. Patrick's Day, Spacebooger has called a special round called "The Green Gauntlet", in which a green character is featured. So you'd think I'd go with Hal, Guy, John, Kyle, or one of the other Green Lanterns for this round. You'd be wrong.

Tonight, I'm going with Rose and the Thorn. For those unfamiliar with the character(s), Rose Forrest is the daughter of policeman Phil Forrest, who was killed by the criminal organization known as The 100. After his death, Rose develops a split personality which manifests while she's sleeping at night. This second persona dresses up in a long red wig, forest (Forrest?) green undies, thigh-high boots, and a whip and fights crime as...The Thorn. She had a regular backup feature in the early 70's LOIS LANE comics.

Tonight's emerald throwdown comes to us from  from Lois Lane#108 (November 1970) in a backup story titled "Mourn For The Thorn!", illustrated by Spider-Man/Metal Men/Wonder Woman team supreme Ross Andru and Mike Esposito and written by crazy old Robert Kanigher. Synopsis: The 100 has hired a team of hit men to kill The Thorn. They appear to succeed. Their method? Trapping Thorn in a blind alley and gunning their car engine, killing her with the carbon monoxide in the exhaust fumes.

(It's Bob Kanigher. Just go with it!)

Is she really dead? Apparently dead enough to convince this guy.

Yes, Superman, a man with super-hearing, x-ray and microscopic vision, and a vast array of super-scientific knowledge, believes Thorn is really dead. Keep this in mind for later.

Anyway, before our mournful Man of Steel can arrange a special JLA funeral, Thorn's body is claimed by an outside party and transported to a special location.

What is the "Mansion of Mourning"? Allow this nameless 100 goon to explain.

Yes, you read that right: Her emergency protocol in case she's trapped by The 100 overdose on heart medication. Who the hell devised this ingenius master strategem? Roy Harper? (Sorry, Shelly!)

Apparently, Thorn's deathlike coma recovery skills rival Wolverine's, as she tears into the 100's thugs.

And remember how her "deathlike coma" fooled Superman into thinking she was dead?

Yep, that's right, she wasn't even autopsied or embalmed. Nice due diligence there, Superdick!

BONUS:  In the Silver Age, many superheroes had their own special nicknames. Superman's was The Man of Steel, Batman and Robin's were the Dynamic Duo, Wonder Woman's was the Amazing Amazon. What was The Thorn's nickname?

"The Nymph of Night".  No, really!

Still, all jokes aside, The Thorn did kick some major ass back in the day. She enjoyed some occasional resurgences since then, first in the 90's Superman books (in a much more practical outfit) and then later when Gail Simone revamped her in her own mini and in Birds Of Prey. Hopefully, Gail can use her again in some future Birds or Secret Six stories. Or maybe Greg Rucka or Ed Brubaker can take a crack at writing her someday.

Our fight music for tonight? What else?

For more thorny battles, click here.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Have a SLAMMIN' St. Patrick's Day!

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Hey, Laura Hudson! You Missed One!

Over at Comics Alliance, Laura Hudson, with assistance from Chris Haley and Curt Franklin, ran two recent articles: "Charlie Sheen Quotes Presented By Superheroes" and its sequel, the aptly-named "More Charlie Sheen Quotes Presented By Superheroes". Both articles are extremely entertaining, and I highly recommend them. However, I think they missed a key one:

"I've spent, I think, close to the last decade, I don't know, effortlessly and magically converted your tin cans into pure gold."

Friday, March 04, 2011

Public Announcements, 3/4/11

It's been several months since I wrote a "Public Announcements" post, so here goes nothing:

*ATTENTION, MODERN COMIC BOOK WRITERS!* - If you want to pay tribute to the recently-deceased Dwayne McDuffie, here's a good way: Follow his example. Take the time to understand the characters you're writing, including their past history. Respect the work of past writers of the character you're writing. Avoid the "everything you knew before is bullshit" approach. Don't try to alter the existing character you've been given in order to warp him or her into the mold of a new character you really want to write. If you feel this temptation, it's better to just create that completely new character. Don't feel the need to tear down everything past writers established, including supporting casts, under the guise of making the character your own. This is especially true in the case of a certain Amazon Princess.

*ATTENTION, JUDD WINICK!* - When the best defense of your revised origin of Ice I can devise is "Well, at least she didn't get raped", that means your new origin sucks.

*ATTENTION, DC AND MARVEL EDITORIAL!* -  After this summer, can we please put a moritorium on the "Altered History/Reality/Timeline" plots? Maybe five, even ten or fifteen years? You've gone to this well way too often, especially recently, and, quite frankly, we readers are feeling very burnt out. Here's a clue: when you have two of these storylines running at the same time, there's a big problem! Get some new material.

*ATTENTION, SUPERMAN EDITORIAL!* - Please keep Chris Roberson on SUPERMAN after "Grounded" concludes. Roberson's actually making some lemonade out of the lemon that was JMS' storyline, providing a coherent explanation of Superman's recent behavior and channeling both Grant Morrison and Elliott S! Maggin in places. (I loved the "Fortress of Solidarity" concept!) And his work on the recent Lord of Time 2-parter in Superman/Batman shows he's a great writer when left on his own. Let him shine.


*ATTENTION, WISCONSIN GOVERNOR SCOTT WALKER!* - When you tell public union workers that you can't honor their pension deals because your state's facing rough economic times, and they actually agree to all the concessions in those deals that you suggested, the honorable thing to do is to simply say "thank you", not to insist on stripping them of their collective bargaining rights, too.

*ATTENTION, LIBERALS WHO STAYED HOME FROM THE 2010 ELECTIONS TO "SEND A MESSAGE TO OBAMA"!*  - How'd that work out for you? Thanks to you, we've got a Republican House of Representatives who wants to cut education and social services to the bone (potentially costing the US at least 750,000 jobs) while refusing to eliminate subsidies to oil companies or tax cuts for the wealthy and actually increasing military spending this year, as well as several state governors who want to use tough fiscal times as an excuse to eliminate unions' collective bargaining rights. Can we all agree now that staying home on Election Day is AN EXTREMELY STUPID IDEA and promise to never do it again? Please?

*ATTENTION, JOHN BOEHNER!* - You kept asking President Obama "Where are the jobs?" during the 2010 election season, and claimed you would make job creation your top priority. But at last count, going into your third month as Speaker, we've seen exactly three abortion bills come before the House and zero jobs bills. So now I have to ask YOU: "Where are the jobs bills?"

Friday Night Fights: Fight Life - Round 12: Karate Vs. Force Field!

Tonight's round of Friday Night Fights: Fight Life features the following helpful tip from Darkseid:

Karate vs. force field?

Force field always wins.

Even if you're Karate Kid.

The preceding educational message is courtesy of Legion of Super Heroes#294, the conclusion of "The Great Darkness Saga", written by Paul Levitz and illustrated by Keith Giffen and Larry Mahlstedt. Tonight's fight music comes from George Harrison.

For more helpful tips, click here. And remember to vote!