Sing, sing a song; sing of oblivion, it’s 36 issues long! For this month’s first (?) Four-Color Flashback, Paul and Arlo are harmonizing about Robert Kirkman and Lorenzo De Felici’s 2018-22 Image series Oblivion Song. It’s an alien invasion saga that questions the very concepts of “alien” and “invasion,” regarding its human and Kuthaal characters with equal levels of empathy and complexity. The boys discuss how Kirkman overcomes The Walking Dead’s biggest flaws, De Felici’s otherworldly artwork, Annalisa Leoni’s eerily beautiful colors, and so much more. Plus, Arlo made a return trip to Austin, TX.
Listener, we would have words with thee! As the Odinson and the Mighty Thor swing their hammers onto the big screen in Thor: Love and Thunder, Paul and Arlo revisit some of the film’s influences for this month’s Four-Color Flashback. The boys dig deep into the early part of Jason Aaron’s run on the golden-haired Avenger, with Thor: God of Thunder #1-25 and Thor (2014) #1-8. Topics of discussion include the dynamite art of Esad Ribić and Russell Dauterman, Thor’s crisis of faith, why Jane Foster wielding Mjolnir makes for such a great reinvention of the character, and more.
NEXT: anything is possible.
00:00:32 – Intro / Banter
00:04:55 – Main Topic
00:11:54 – INTERLUDE: Giving Arlo $#!&
00:14:01 – Back to the Main Topic!
01:55:21 – Outro / Next
“Divine Hammer” by The Breeders, Last Splash (1993)
“Sweet Jane” by Cowboy Junkies, The Trinity Sessions (1988)
Sit back and say ‘Aaaahhhh!’ For this month’s Four-Color Flashback, Paul and Arlo take a trip to the dentist with Raina Telgemeier’s 2010 autobiographic novel Smile. Raina looks back on how her orthodontic woes served as a marker for her adolescence, from the loss of her two front teeth in 6th grade circa 1989 through finally ditching those braces in freshman year ‘92. This prompts Paul and Arlo to recount their own dental dramas in dramatic (traumatic?) detail before praising Telgemeier’s skillful cartooning, her incisive rendering of middle school social mores, the way historical events are set against the backdrop of teen life, and more. Plus, the boys have thoughts on the This Is Us series finale.
NEXT: more drama, more trauma.
00:00:23 – Intro / This is Us
00:35:17 – Smile
01:35:33 – Outro / Next
“Dentist!” by Steve Martin, Michelle Weeks, Tichina Arnold & Tisha Campbell, Little Shop of Horrors (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) (1986)
And you run, you run to catch up with the sun, but it’s sinking…well, before it sets, Paul and Arlo have a few MCU movies they need to discuss. Due to that pesky pandemic, we’ve gotten behind on the Marvel Cinematic Universe here at Gobbledygeek, but fear not! In this special, super-sized episode, Paul and Arlo discuss three mighty Marvel movies: Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, which brings Chinese mythology to the MCU; Eternals, which brings a race of immortal god-beings to the MCU; and Spider-Man: No Way Home, which brings a whole bunch of Spider-Men to the MCU. The boys rave about Tony Leung, have a friendly (?) debate about the merits of Eternals, can’t get enough of Andrew Garfield, and so very much more.
NEXT: he is vengeance, he is the night, he is Kenn Edwards! Everybody’s favorite podcaster/guitarist joins us for a look at Matt Reeves’ The Batman.
00:01:47 – Intro / Banter
00:03:53 – Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
00:46:42 – Eternals
01:45:50 – Spider-Man: No Way Home
02:37:50 – Outro / Next
“Time” by Pink Floyd, Dark Side of the Moon (1973)
“Three is a Magic Number” by Bob Dorough, Schoolhouse Rock! (1973)
What happens when a child is born who will invent immortality? According to Ram V and Filipe Andrade’s The Many Deaths of Laila Starr, Death is fired from her job, is cast into a mortal body, and attempts to find and murder this child. Oh, she also dies a lot. On this month’s Four-Color Flashback, Paul & Arlo discuss the book’s unique approach to Indian mythology, Andrade’s beautifully distorted figures, V’s ability to be self-serious without being pretentious, and more. Plus, Paul gets into Severance, the boys aren’t feeling This Is Us‘ final season, and Arlo reads more Superman.
NEXT: it’s an MCU catch-up session. The boys will discuss the trifecta of Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Eternals, and Spider-Man: No Way Home.
For Paul and Arlo, existential crises and comic books often go hand-in-hand. Such is the case for this week’s freestyle, wherein Paul’s rumination on the erosion of his teenage self-confidence leads into a discussion of superhero mags. Paul tells Goblin punks to fuck off as he rocks out to Cody Ziglar and Justin Mason’s Spider-Punk, goes undercover with Kelly Thompson and Elena Casagrande’s recently wrapped run on Black Widow, and cloaks himself in Jed MacKay and Alessandro Cappuccio’s Moon Knight. Meanwhile, Arlo rides on horseback through more goofy Silver Age Superman.
NEXT: we will continue to spiral.
“I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times” by The Beach Boys, Pet Sounds (1966)
“Running Water” by Daniel Johnston, Hi, How Are You (1983)
Weigh anchor and hoist the mizzen! Paul and Arlo set sail for a discussion of David Jenkins’ pirate rom-com Our Flag Means Death. The new HBO Max series, a very loose telling of the history between Stede “The Gentleman Pirate” Bonnet and Edward “Blackbeard” Teach, begins as a silly romp very much in the vein of executive producer/star Taika Waititi’s other work. And then…well, it becomes something very much more, depicting a number of queer romances in positive, affirming fashion. The boys discuss this shouldn’t-be-shocking-in-2022 level of representation, the chemistry between Rhys Darby and Waititi, how closely (or not) the show follows the historical record, the series’ moral of not accepting that the way things are is the way they have to be, and more. Plus, up in the sky! It’s a bird, it’s a plane, Arlo is reading old Superman comics!
Sometimes a gorilla is just a gorilla. Sometimes, though, that gorilla–righteously bearing arms though he may be–is a gateway to a story about the power and fluidity of narrative. For this month’s Four-Color Flashback, Paul and Arlo go ape for Si Spurrier and Jeff Stokely’s Six-Gun Gorilla, a sci-fi Western published by BOOM! Studios in 2013. The boys discuss Stokely’s glorious, hyper-exaggerated art; how the book’s entertainment conglomerate dystopia feels like a logical extension of our present; the way Spurrier weaves various pulp genres throughout his story; and more. Plus, Paul got sick in Gatlinburg again and Arlo admits he was wrong about Dune.
Gobbledygeek episode 461, “FCF: Black Panther – The Intergalactic Empire of Wakanda,” is available for listening or download right here, on Spotify, and on Apple Podcasts.
Panthers…IN SPAAAAACE! For their first Four-Color Flashback of 2022, Paul and Arlo look to the stars, where they find Black Panther: The Intergalactic Empire of Wakanda. The second half of Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Black Panther run, these 25 issues–with art by Daniel Acuña, Kev Walker, and Ryan Bodenheim, among others–concern T’Challa’s rise from slave to legend in an alien empire that bears his kingdom’s name. The boys discuss Coates’ bold new direction, the question of expansion vs. imperialism at the heart of the book, Acuña’s photorealistic interstellar action compared to Walker’s more abstract emphasis on character, and that goddamn symbiote. Plus, an acknowledgement of how surreal it is to be reading a comic book depiction of war at this particular moment, Amazon’s evisceration of comiXology, and more.
NEXT: let’s party like it’s 1999-2003. For the first of a two-part exploration of the Wachowskis’ Matrix series, writer Tilly Bridges jacks in to discuss the original trilogy. Whoa.
00:00:23 – Intro / Banter
00:08:21 – Paul’s Unhinged ComiXology Rant
00:34:43 – Main Topic
01:56:36 – Outro / Next
“Intergalactic” by Beastie Boys, Hello Nasty (1998)
“And cast ye the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” So says Matthew 25:30, and in John Layman and Afu Chan’s Outer Darkness, there is plenty of weeping–and so, so much gnashing of teeth. For their last Four-Color Flashback of the year, Paul and Arlo discuss Layman and Chan’s 2018-19 Image/Skybound series, which imagines a far-flung future where spaceships need exorcists onboard and the dead can be resurrected so long as you cast a net wide enough to catch their souls. The boys discuss the book’s ingenious mash-up of space opera and supernatural horror, how Layman & Chan expertly juggle a number of timelines, why the visceral splorches of Chan’s art are so satisfying, and the depressing realities behind the series’ cancellation.
NEXT: what if…we did another MCUTV episode with Hollywood’s own Michael Holland? We’ll be discussing, you guessed it, the animated Marvel series What If…?
00:00:57 – Intro
00:04:39 – Outer Darkness
01:37:00 – Outro / Next
“Spirit in the Sky” by Bauhaus, Singles (2013)
“Furries!” by Pony Death Ride, Not a Foal, Not Yet a Horse (2012)