Tuesday, October 1, 2019


September went by fast. Household repairs ate up a lot of money and time in September. I told Barb we should have the government send my social security check directly to our contractor.

We celebrated my daughter Kelly’s birthday. Her being such a great kid and all, it took us more than one day.

The new television season has started. My favorite new show so far is CBG’s Evil which stars Mike Colter of Luke Cage fame. I’ll try to do some TV-centric bloggy things soon.

On the not fun side of things, we lost one of our best historians in September. Bill Schelly wrote great books on comics fandom and amazing biographies of Otto Binder, Joe Kubert, Harvey Kurtzman, John Stanley and Bill Warren. He was a great human being. I wish I had known him better. I’m glad I knew him as well as I did. He’ll me sorely missed.

As we’ve come to expect, the Dumpster President was committing nigh-daily crimes against our country and against basic human decency. Impeachment proceedings are starting. I’m not sure if they’ll lead to his removal from office and relocation to prison, but that would be a nice outcome of all this. It’s a long shot. The Republicans in Congress have betrayed their oaths of office when it comes to the orange monster. But one can hope.

No matter how good or bad the world seems to be, I can still find something each and every day that fills me with joy. Here are the things that made me happy in September...

September 1: The Bronze Gazette #84. A great Doc Savage magazine! This latest issue has a Bob Larkin retrospective, a comics guide,  an amazing article on Doc Savage’s gold and much more. Recommended!

September 2: Saintly Wife Barb and I watched my new BluRay of the not at all saintly un-rated version of A Million Ways to Die in the West. We love this movie. It was fun to see the cameos and scenes that didn’t make it into the theatrical version.

September 3: Marvel Masters of Suspense: Stan Lee & Steve Ditko Omnibus Vol. 1. I’m loving the bejabbers out of this collection of Ditko-drawn and mostly Lee-written short stories.

September 4: Taste-testing snack items from my first Universal Yums box with Saintly Wife Barb. The snacks in this box are from Turkey and there’s around twenty different ones. Fun for the whole family. I’ll be blogging about it soon.

September 5: Savoring Eric Lewald’s Previously on X-Men: The Making of an Animated Series. I’m reading this informative book slowly so that, when I get to the episodes discussions, I’ll have the time to watch them.

September 6: I shot a cameo for my friend Alex P. Michaels’ Out of Darkness: Cleveland. If you’ve always wanted to see me in a muscle shirt being pushed around by a beautiful woman, this is likely the only place you’ll see it. After all, I don’t want to be typecast.

September 7: My final Vast Accumulation of Stuff garage sale was a tremendous success. I had great conversations with very interesting people and achieved 106% of my ambitious sales goal.

September 8: Breakfast at Waffle O Waffle with my Saintly Wife Barb and our daughter Kelly. It’s an out-of-the-way place, but the food is outstanding!

September 9: The Long Shot (2019) starring Charlize Theron and Seth Rogen. It’s an edgy, funny and satisfying romcom set in a mad world where a moronic TV star became president with the backing of a vile right-wing media mogul.

September 10: HGTV’s A Very Brady Renovation. It’s akin to a comics crossover event. Eight HGTV stars. Six grown-up Brady kids. Great fun with a sweet nostalgia coating.

September 11: Marvel Horror Omnibus. At long last, my entire run of It! The Living Colossus has been reprinted. This book weighs in at 7.4 pounds and also features my Living Mummy stories and much more. It’s hefty horror as you like it!

September 12: For the first time in over a week, I’m feeling 100%. I’m hopeful I’ll make great progress on my “Things to Do” list.

September 13: Saintly Wife Barb and our wonderful neighbor Sue did an amazing job consolidating our two storage units. We’ll be down to one by the end of the month.

[UPDATE. That didn’t happen. But I’m still hopeful we’ll get down to one unit before my next rental payment.]

September 14: Tyrannosaurus Rex stamps! I’m a huge fan of the USPS and use them for all my shipping. 9-14-19.

September 15: The absolutely brilliant Ron Smith cover of 2000 AD #128 [September 1, 1979]. Somehow, someway, I want to have a cover like this on an Isabella-written comic book.

September 16: Back Issue #115. Specifically, Ian Millsted’s Judge Dredd article and Robert Menzies’ interview with Walt Simonson on the latter’s Justice Peace, a homage to Dredd.

September 17: Our Universal Yums box for September has arrived with snacks from Greece. My family and I are looking forward to sampling the treats within.

[UPDATE. This also has not happened yet. I’ll be going solo on the goodies this week so I can start writing my report on the box before the next one arrives.]

September 18: I love our sectional sofa, but I finally realize my Saintly Wife Barb is correct. It looks like heck and it needs to be replaced. I’m looking forward to picking out some new furniture as soon as Barb assures me that the “looks like heck” argument doesn’t apply to her husband.

September 19:  My first gag for John Lustig’s syndicated feature “Last Kiss” appeared on Wednesday, September 18 at GoComics.com. I’m enjoying this gig and am very pleased with John and the fans’ reactions to my initial panel. More to come.

[UPDATE: It appears my gags will run every Wednesday.]

September 20: “Moonvasion!” The second season finale of DuckTales was clearly sharper, smarter and tougher than any other animated series on TV. It’s my second favorite comics-based TV series of 2019.

September 21: The Flaming River Con 2019. A wonderful celebration of geek culture tailored to the LBGTQA+ community, but absolutely welcome to all. I had a great time there. 
[ADDENDUM: I was a guest panelist and cosplay judge at the Flaming River Con. Held in the main branch of the Cleveland Public Library, this was the second year for the Midwest’s only LGBTQA+ comics con. My panel was on “Toxic Masculinity in Comics,” during which I made the well-received claim that the Batman is toxic as hell. Maybe DC will take the hint someday.
September 22: The Side Quest. The Flaming River Con after-party was held at Lakewood’s geek bar. A cozy, inclusive place with games, closed-captioned genre movies like Tremors and Iron Man, drinks and food with appropriately geeky names like “Sonic Screwdriver.” They even made a special Black Lightning drink for the party. I’ll be back there soon.

September 23: Tony Isabella’s Authentic Black Lightning Group page launched on Facebook today. The focus is on Black Lightning works that adhere to the core values of my creation. We’re just getting started but expect content that’s fun and informative.

September 24: Greta Thunberg. Her clear voice, courage and passion for doing what’s right and speaking undeniable truth to power makes her a true hero for our times.

September 25: Stumptown. The premiere episode of the TV show based on the Greg Rucka/Matthew Southworth comics. Amazing performances by Cobie Smulders and the supporting cast. The comics are better, but Saintly Wife Barb and I are loving this series.

September 26: Stephen King’s The Institute. King is no stranger to takes of gifted children and malevolent government projects, but he keeps it fresh with great characters, attention to detail and just plain riveting storytelling.

September 27: Sham Comics from Source Point Press. Old stories, new words. Sometimes a little too “blue” in its gags, but this ongoing title makes me laugh. I like laughing.

September 28: CBS’s Evil hit the right balance of human evil versus the possibly supernatural. So creepy good with great performances by Katja Herbers, Mike Colter, Kurt Fuller and the amazing Michael Emerson. I’m all in on this new series.

September 29: Harryhausen The Lost Movies by John Walsh. Incredible movies that never got made mixed with some films Harryhausen turned down for good reason. A bittersweet “what if” collection that every Harryhausen fan should read.

September 30: My friend Thom Zahler’s Love and Capes is returning. The super-hero situation comedy is one of my favorites. I’m so glad it’s coming back I’m not even waiting for the trade.

That’s all for today. I’ll be back soon with more stuff.

© 2019 Tony Isabella

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