Hello to all the Freaks, Geeks, & Monsters out there, I am Rev. Jay Leal. I am the founder and CEO of both Rebel Rev. Industries and our subsidiary brand, Skeleton Crüe Clothing! (www.TheSkeletonCrue.com)
For those of you who don’t know me, let me give you a little run down on who I think I am.
I was born and raised in Southern California where I grew up the same way all other beach town kids do: surfing, skateboarding, and spending a lot of time roaming around town. I hated reading as a kid, mainly because my brain works faster than the rest of my body can function. Reading conventional books was a nightmare for me, all the letters would jumble up and instead of reading the word on the page, I always just guessed at what was typed in a separate attempt to keep up with my thinking. I basically just said screw it and finally gave up, I honestly have never read a standard novel from start to finish.
Anyway, this was the 1990′s and the heyday of super hero cartoons, Spider-Man, X-Men, The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man, Silver Surfer, BATMAN! Damn the 90′s were really a great time to be a geeky kid on Saturday mornings. This was my introduction to super heroes, and I was hooked. Eventually, on my usual wanderings around town, I happened to see a store front, with all the heroes I have come to love plastered all over its windows, intrigued I walked in. My first exposure to comics was at this store, I knew what “comics” were, but then who doesn’t. What I didn’t know was that they devoted whole ADD child sized books based upon all these heroes from my favorite cartoons! Needless to say after scoring some cash I would venture down the street from my grade school, when I was supposed to be in “homework” lab, and I’d pick up an issue or two. So while my grandparents thought I was sitting in my school’s library doing homework, I was actually on the beach reading comics, HA! In retrospect, if this story gets back to my grandmother, at least I wasn’t doing drugs or getting into trouble, and I WAS reading! It was easy for me to read comics because there were minimal words with a lot going on. It was easier for me to focus on dialog balloons than it was pages filled with letters, plus with the artwork I was able to see the scene instead of focusing on my own mental imagery while trying to put letters together.
So yeah, that one shop stayed my comic pick up spot from then through high school. When college came around I ended up in Florida at the legendary Full Sail University! If you don’t know what school I’m talking about, all you need to know is that going there meant you spent a lot of time indoors. By a random stroke of luck one of my instructors actually owned his own comic shop, and wouldn’t you know, it was right across the street! It was almost like someone planned it that way.
Unable to escape my comic addiction, I just went with it and continued picking up random trades and single issues from time to time when I had some cash. Oh and what was really jacked up was that when new events started rolling around, they would walk over from the comic shop and litter our campus with flyers and free issues! You always want to give a junky a little taste to keep them coming back.
I was always a random issue and trades kind of kid, I never really got into serious collecting, but it definitely always intrigued me. So now I’m done with college and sent out into the world with a fresh new Bachelors of Science degree in Film! Yup, that’s the most useful move to make with your education ever, HA! (No, but seriously, I loved college and did actually learn a lot). So long story short, I moved to Nashville and started on my entertainment career, meet my eternal partner, Cali Ford, and we started our Visual Media Production Company.
REBEL REV. INDUSTRIES! (www.RebelRevIndustries.com)
Now in Nashville, I was without a comic shop, so needless to say I was left with a gaping hole in my life. Cali, being aware of this, (she definitely knows me better than I know myself!) noticed that there was a comic shop off the main road by our house, the infamous, Rick’s Comic City. It wasn’t long before we made our way in and sparked the comic flare within my little black heart yet again! Cali, being the amazing woman she is, actually encouraged me to start spending a little bit of our hard earned cash on a few titles. This eventually lead into becoming fast friends with, shop owners, Rick Parman and Zach “Renegade” Duncan, and the rest is history. Now, Cali and I are avid comic collectors and produce a comic culture webshow with both Rick and Zach called The Skeleton Crüe: Comic Corps.
Now I’m here! I was very generously given this opportunity by the good folks here at Wreckhouse Magazine to rant about all my favorite titles, epic score, right?!? So, every week I’ll be posting reviews on my weekly pickups. Let me tell you up front, there is going to be A LOT of Marvel; it’s just what I happen to love. I will be expanding my horizons a little bit though into some DC and Indie stuff, but just know I’m only doing it for you.
Well I’ll stop now, and I hope you like what I have to say.
Lets begin, shall we?
Amazing Spider-Man #686
This is part 6 of the “Ends Of The Earth”, Amazing Spider-Man, epic event. Let me take a second to get everyone up to speed. So, Dr. Octopus has yet again assembled his “Sinister Six” for another
countless round of mayhem, this time though it’s a little more in-depth and intense. Now Doc Ock isn’t his old failure self these days, he’s not confined to an iron lung type device with tentacles.
The Doc is on his last “legs” of life and he wants to make sure that his potentially last go at world domination is a literal do or die attempt. Anyway Doc’s ploy this time is convincing the world that he wants to change his legacy from villain to savior. A “solution” to global warming is the pitch and honestly it works, the whole world goes for it and turns on Spider-man. It’s gotten to the point where even The AVENGERS are on the fence about the Doc’s plan and they end up not being any help at all to Spidey. …OH! and Spider-Man has introduced us to, in my opinion, his most stellar and bad ass new costume EVER!
Ok, so now that everyone is up to speed. So, over the last few issues Spider-Man has been picking off the Sinister Six one by one and falling into a couple traps along the way. This issue starts with what turns out to be another one of these traps but from it he actually recruits a new, and very unlikely, member to his small team. Even I was surprised by this one. This issue brings us to a point where Spidey has knocked down Doc’s Sinister Six to and “Diabolic Duo” and seems to be wrapping up this crisis rather nicely, until he and all of us loyal readers are hit with a sledge hammer to the chest. The issue comes to a close with Doc introducing us to his NEW Sinister Six, and leaving all of us a little worried.
Marvel Zombies Destroy #2 (Limited Series)
Issue 2 of 6
There isn’t a whole lot to say about this title. It’s done in the same mood as all our other favorite Marvel Zombies series, except that it’s better because it has Dum Dum Dugan as a focal character! Howard the Duck is our other main hero in this series and recruits Dum Dum Dugan to go with him to save an, either an alternate dimension or a parallel universe, I honestly forget, but really who the hell can keep up with that anymore. Anyway where they go is overrun with zombies that were used by the Nazis to win WWII, I know, fun right?!? Basically if you’re a fan of bad 80′s zombie movies and obscure Marvel characters, then this title was literally written for you.
HULK SMASH Avengers #4
We’re now 4 issues deep into the HULK SMASH Avengers series and so far it’s been fun. Each issue of the series has taken place in a different decade, with the HULK getting into some kind of trouble with the decades appropriate Avengers lineup, starting with the 1960′s. This week the decade was the 90′s, it should have been a nice little taste of nostalgia for me cause I learned to read in the 90′s ergo started reading comics in the 90′s. Unfortunately I was forced to read a story were a grey HULK was acting as a new mob boss in Las Vegas… Yeah… and on top of that I was stuck with the 90′s West Coast Avengers team. Aside from Iron Man, they are not one of my favorite Avengers offshoot teams. Meh, this one title didn’t kill the series for me, I’m still looking forward to the final issue.
Secret Avengers #27 (Avengers Vs. X-Men Tie-In)
Well, Captain Marvel is back, and he’s kind of a total D-Bag. I don’t know in the liner notes it said that this issue takes place before the last 2 Avengers issues #s 25 & 26. I’m a little lost, I
honestly can’t remember if I read Secret Avengers #26… I feel like I did but this whole return of Mar-Vell and him wanting to guide the Phoenix to his Kree home planet has got me a little lost, I think I need to go back an reread some stuff.
Alright, this is the first issue with a “healing factor-less” DeadPool, I know, trust me, I know. Why take away what makes DeadPool a super human?!?! But I’m not gonna lie, it makes for a fun read. If you haven’t been keeping up, Deadpool wanted to finally die. Dying was impossible for him because of his healing factor, and it’s kind of what made him one of my favorites. The fact that he couldn’t die meant that he could get away with ANYTHING, he could say whatever he wanted, go wherever he wanted and pick a fight with whoever he wanted.. With the way this last issue ended though, I think he may realize that now. Anyway back on track, Deadpool lost his healing factor because his friend, Hydra Bob, stabbed him with one of those mutation eliminating serums. After the fact though Bob had a heart to heart with DeadPool and made him want to live again.. I’m telling you though, DeadPool can’t take an explosion like he used to.
Alright, so that wraps up my commentary on the titles I picked up this week. I’ll try to expand on my weekly pick ups now that I’m doing this. I’ll be sure to grab a couple independent titles and some more DC. I’m actually starting in on the Night of the Owls Batman cross over, but I’ve got quite a bit to catch up on before I have anything meaningful to say about that.
So, until next time, THANKS FOR READING!
Rest in Piece,
Rev. Jay Leal