The Cultural Gutter

dangerous because it has a philosophy

"We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars." -- Oscar Wilde

My Year With The Fantastic Four


Days after we rang in the New Year, I finished a year spent reading all of the Fantastic Four comics, from Stan Lee and Jack Kirby’s earth-shattering first issue in 1961, which explained how four family members and friends were transformed by cosmic rays into super-powered adventurers, through the latest issues in 2015 by James […]

Framing Stan Lee

Some pretty sweet portraiture by Joel Kimmel for “The Inquisition of Ms. Marvel.”

“As Told To Stan Lee”

Dedicated to romance comics–especially Marvel romance comics–As Told To Stan Lee shares panels of shirtless men and bikini-clad ladies in love. (Thanks, Keith!)

RIP, Joe Simon

Comics writer and artist Joe Simon has died. Simon created Captain America with Jack Kirby and, according to Michael Cavna at Comic Riffs blog, “Virtuoso though he was, his most iconic image from 80 years in the industry will remain the introduction of Captain America socking Hitler in the jaw in 1941.” Comic Riffs has […]

The Creature in the Black Bog

In honor of Steve Ditko’s birthday, The Belated Nerd has posted Steve Ditko and Stan Lee’s “The Creature in the Black Bog” from Tales of Suspense #23

The Jack Kirby Estate vs. Marvel

The Kirby estate’s copyright case has come to the attention of The New York Times. Kirby’s heirs are suing for ownership rights in his many, many creations at Marvel.  “Of course these court battles are about money. They also force the modern entertainment industry to reckon with the often amoral practices of the old comics […]

The Governator

Stan Lee and Arnold Schwarzenegger have joined forces for, The Governator.

Robot Hater!

It is the year 2000 and you are Vincent Latimer, “Robot Hater!” (Or you are a reader of a comic in the second person).

The History of Black Comic Book Heroes Through the Ages

Dart Adams Presents: Black Like Me: The History of Black Comic Book Heroes Through the Ages, Part One (1900-1968)and Part Two (1969-2008).  (Click it! It’s amazing).

Black Panther Animated Series

Marvel’s animating my childhood with their upcoming Black Panther series for BET. (No, I wasn’t T’Challa, the King of Wakanda. I just loved Black Panther). Animated Superheroes has the theme song as well as screen shots of characters and the voice-acting credits. (via Black SuperHero Blog).

Rob Liefield, Scene By Scene

Chris Sims watches The Comic Book Greats: Rob Liefield, in which a 23-year-old Rob Liefield is interviewed by the ever-lovin’ Stan Lee.  “[W]hether you think of Liefeld as the dynamic heir to Jack Kirby or the much-deserved punching-bag of the Comics Internet, it makes for a fascinating snapshot of one of the strangest times in […]

Flame On!

Calling all True Believers, the Fantastic Four is on the air starring Bill Murray as the voice of Johnny Storm, the Human Torch.

It’s the only way to resolve differences.

The Thing and the Hulk clobber and smash each other in mixed media. It’s the only way to resolve differences.  (Make sure to follow the link through to the Stan Lee Excelsior Exhibit entries).

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  • Of Note Elsewhere

    At The Brattle Film Notes, Kerry Fristoe writes about The Road Warrior and Lord Byron’s poem, “Darkness,” in The Road Warrior or Mad Max and Lord Byron Walk into a Bar…”


    There’s a free audio book adaptation of Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez’ Locke & Key at


    At Actionland, Heroic Sister Achillesgirl writes about subtitling the 1964 wuxia film, Buddha Palm. And she provides you with the subtitles and a link to the film!


    At Bleeding Cool, Cap Blackard writes about the contested homeworld of Howard the Duck. “If you’ve seen the much maligned Howard the Duck film or read any Howard the Duck stories published since 1979, you’re probably familiar with the concept of Duckworld. You know, an alternate Earth where everyone is ducks and everything is duck-themed: Ducktor Strange, Bloomingducks, etc, etc. Sounds like a recipe for a finite barrel of bad jokes, right? It is, and it’s also not Howard’s real point of origin. During his landmark initial run, Howard’s creator Steve Gerber had the down-and-out duck hailing from a world of talking animals, but all that changed when Gerber was kicked off the book and Disney flashed a lawsuit. Now, after decades of backstory fumbling, Mark Waid has reinstated Howard’s point of origin in a one-shot issue of S.H.I.E.L.D.” (Thanks, Mark!)


    At The Village Voice, Jackson Connor writes about the making of The Warriors. Amid the refurbished boardwalk and laughter of children, it’s easy to forget that Coney Island was once a place where tourists did not venture. For much of the latter half of the twentieth century, street gangs dominated this neighborhood. They ran rampant through the area’s neglected housing projects, tearing along Surf and Neptune avenues toward West 8th Street. Those gangs, or gangs like them, and that incarnation of Coney Island would form the backbone of author Sol Yurick’s 1965 debut novel, The Warriors, about the young members of a street gang. More than a decade after the novel’s publication it would be optioned and, eventually, turned into a major motion picture of the same name.” (via @pulpcurry)


    Edith Garrud taught Suffragettes jiu-jitsu and formed Emmeline Pankhurst’s Bodyguard. “The first connection between the suffragettes and jiu-jitsu was made at a WSPU meeting. Garrud and her husband William, who ran a martial arts school in London’s Golden Square together, had been booked to attend. But William was ill, so she went alone. ‘Edith normally did the demonstrating, while William did the speaking,’ says Tony Wolf, writer of Suffrajitsu, a trilogy of graphic novels about this aspect of the suffragette movement. ‘But the story goes that the WSPU’s leader, Emmeline Pankhurst, encouraged Edith to do the talking for once, which she did.'”


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