Listen to Gobbledygeek Episode 381 – “Four-Color Flashback: Hip Hop Family Tree”

Art from ‘Hip Hop Family Tree’ by Ed Piskor.

Gobbledygeek episode 381, “Four-Color Flashback: Hip Hop Family Tree,” is a available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.

Paul and Arlo are in the place to be, rapping about Ed Piskor’s Hip Hop Family Tree. For the latest Four-Color Flashback installment, our nerdy white heroes take on nerdy white cartoonist Piskor’s quartet (so far) of graphic novels discussing the history of hip hop culture. The boys discuss Piskor’s art, equally indebted to underground comix and superhero books of the ‘70s and ‘80s; how the physical editions beautifully replicate the aesthetics of the time period; how Piskor captures the rhythm and fluidity of DJs and breakdancers; and what in the hell he’s got against Russell “Rush” Simmons.

Next: Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood is Family-friendly entertainment.

(Show notes for “Four-Color Flashback: Hip Hop Family Tree.”)

Four-Color Flashback: Chris Claremont & John Byrne’s ‘Uncanny X-Men’ #129-135

Welcome to week 4 of 5 in our analysis of Chris Claremont and John Byrne’s run on Uncanny X-Men. Weeks 1, 2, and 3 can be found here, here, and here.

Well.

This is not quite the reaction I was expecting. They’d fought Magneto, endured the Savage Land, tussled with Arcade and Proteus, and now the X-Men were preparing to go up against possibly their biggest threats yet, the Hellfire Club and Dark Phoenix. And yet I’m sitting here, after these seven issues, with a slight pang of disappointment. There are a number of things I could blame this disappointment on. First and foremost, as you may have noticed by the delayed episode this week, these last few days at Gobbledygeek HQ have been a mite rough. You’re also probably reading this column at least a day late. I don’t regard anything about this column as a chore–it was my idea, and there’s no money involved–but all the same, when you know you have something to do and not much time in which to do it, it can seem like a chore. Which I fully admit is not the best frame of mind to approach a work of art, be it a comic book, a movie, an album, what have you.

But the only reason I bring that up is because I don’t really want to consider the alternative: that for the first time during their run, and ramping up to the most iconic storyline of their joint tenure, Claremont and Byrne have stumbled. Nothing huge or damaging, but instead of continuing their ascent, a little fumbling of the ball. There are parts of these issues that are as epic as they should be, but something feels a little off.

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