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Groovy 1968 Frank Zappa advertisement from Marvel Comics’ Daredevil #38
03:12 pm


Frank Zappa

One of the primary reasons that the quite mind-blowing, entertaining, and enjoyable Monkees movie Head did so poorly at the box office in 1968 was that it represented such a sharp break from the family-friendly sitcom on which the group had built its following. The movie featured lots of utterly confusing footage, at times on an antiwar theme, that was mostly the kind of thing college-aged pot smokers like to see, but it amazingly garnered a G rating, at least initially. As Joseph Brannigan Lynch wrote on the occasion of the Blu-Ray release of Head:

Partly to blame was the marketing campaign that was almost as avant-garde as the film itself, but even worse was the fact that many theaters (successfully) demanded the film’s G-rating be turned into a Mature rating, simply because the film structure allegedly resembled an acid trip.

One of the many fascinating people involved with Head was, of course, Frank Zappa, who wanders through the movie with a Hereford Bull in tow and chides Davy about how “white” his music is not to forget the youth of America. One wonders if Columbia Pictures’ famously miscalculated ad campaign was in any way influenced by a similarly odd campaign for one of Zappa’s albums a few months earlier.

In March 1968, the Mothers of Invention unleashed their third mind-bending cultural intervention, known to all and sundry as We’re Only in It for the Money. In a curious move, Verve Records, no doubt directed by Zappa himself, apparently selected the pre-teen comic book audience to be one of the target demographics to promote the album to. Specifically, Daredevil #38, which came out the same month as the album, and featured a remarkable full-page ad promoting the record.

More after the jump…

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
When comic book ‘heroes’ were sexist women beaters

We don’t have to time travel like Dr. Sam Beckett to find out just how terrible things were in the past. No, we’ve got the Internet to do that for us.

If you’ve ever wondered how easy sexism, misogyny and violence is passed on generation to generation then look no further than this brutal gallery featuring some of the world’s favorite cartoon characters and comic book superheroes spanking women. Their actions are supposed to be funny. Their actions are supposed to be normal. It’s even encouraged by their fellow comic strip characters and worse accepted as a suitable punishment by the women being hit.

Dr. Beckett would have had a hell of a time trying to sort all this sexist crap out and “change history for the better.”

Between the 1940s and 1970s, spanking in comic books appeared to be mandatory. Virtually every comic book hero from Batman, Daredevil, the Phantom, Li’l Abner and Superman indulged in this kind of abuse. Let’s be clear Lois Lane would have dumped Clark Kent for his psychotic penchant for domestic abuse. Bruce Wayne would have been put on at least on community service for his cosplay sadism. Then there were all the dimwits in the newspaper “Funnies” who only reinforced the worst kind of behavior.

The spanking may have stopped but the sexism is still very much a part of today’s comic books as can be seen by the cover of Spider-Woman #1 or through the Hawkeye Intiative. No doubt Dr. Beckett is out there right now trying to fix that too….
More sexist superhero violence, after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Someone rammed ‘Night Court’ up Daredevil’s ass
09:59 am


Night Court

Marvel’s Daredevil only debuted on Netflix a couple of weeks ago, and it already seems poised to assume Breaking Bad levels of fan chatter and devotion—it’s got sharp writing, excellent acting, and it’s unsparingly grimy in its depictions of the underworld and its brutality, with intense and furious fight scenes that push at They Live duration. If it keeps up to the promise of its first season, I could just watch the shit out of it forever—I haven’t read superhero comics since I was probably 12, but Vincent D’Onofrio as Kingpin? God DAMN, pass the popcorn!

So I got a big laugh out of the frisson of this video that recuts Daredevil scenes to parody the affably goofy intro sequence of the ‘80s ensemble sitcom Night Court. Pretty much exactly like that video from a few years ago that perfectly transformed Kubrick’s horror classic The Shining into a heartwarming family comedy, this totally jettisons the dark feel of its source material to hilarious effect. Opportunities were missed, though—the screamingly obvious visual joke of Richard Moll’s “Bull Shannon” and Kingpin goes bafflingly unmade, but it’s still well worth 40 seconds out of your life.

Seriously, with this, they did NOTHING?

H/T John Kalman for this find.

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Leave a comment