Issue 76: Identity Crisis Part 2 – The Murderer Was… A Plot Hole!

My feelings on Identity Crisis are still so torn
“What if the Elongated Man stretched his way into grittiness?

We finish DC’s mega-event that changed everything, Identity Crisis! Is the ending satisfying? Does it make sense? And why does everyone hate Captain Boomerang?

Check out our last episode, Identity Crisis Part 1, first if you haven’t!

Read along: Brad Meltzer and Rags Morales’ Identity Crisis

In this episode, Ryan struggles to defend why cynicism can be good when it’s in a story he kinda likes. Sly thinks all superheroes look the same. Darryl discovers the most relatable villain. And Phil just can’t help but nitpick plot holes just because they don’t make any sense and hurt the narrative. What a stickler!

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Issue 75: Identity Crisis Part 1 – Whoops, Cynicism Wins After All

Identity Crisis is polarizing for a reason
“Is his true identity Elongated Man, Plastic Man, or Mr. Fantastic?”

We talk about a book we’ve been awkwardly avoiding for years, DC’s 2004 event: Identity Crisis. This is one of the biggest DC stories we’ve covered and it’s the one that proved just how cynical Alan Moore’s influence was. So we should hate it, right? Well…

Read along: Brad Meltzer and Rags Morales’ Identity Crisis

On this episode, we dip into the first half of Identity Crisis. We’ll finish it next time, don’t worry! Ryan’s a giant hypocrite who likes this book (but WITH ASTERISKS, HE SWEARS). Darryl finally found a superhero story that he doesn’t think is dumb (most of the time). Phil just loves big anime fights. Sly packs this episode with more lore than ever.

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Issue 68: Stan Lee: Stan the Man or Stan Bragg?

Ryan secretly still loves Stan Lee. Shhhhh
Face front, True Believers! For The World’s Greatest Boss! Just Don’t Dare Ask Any of My Employees!”

You know that guy that shows up in every Marvel movie? Stanley? Well, he’s been cameoing in comics for years! Not always in the best light, though. Apparently his coworkers really hated him and loved to openly mock him in their books. ‘Nuff Said!

Comics Covered: Angel And The Ape Issue 2

Mister Miracle Issue 6

Strange Tales Issue 181

In this episode, we delve into some of the more aggressive takes on Stan “The Man” Lee. Jack Kirby, Jim Starlin, and Bob Oksner all included him in their books in a pretty negative light. Darryl! Loves! Extra! Exclamation!! Points!!! Sly gives the secret origin of Stan Lee’s co-creator. Ryan revisits his fourth world fever dream. And Phil finally comes out a chicky lady booby baby. It’s time to get deep into some meta lore here at Divisive Issues studios.

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Issue 67 – The Original Iran Deal: Kill Robin and Appoint Ambassador Joker

Death In The Family
“Ethiopia is only 1700 km from Lebanon as the crow(bar) flies!”

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY! It’s time to help Robin find his mom! All four of them! Iran’s in the news a lot lately, so we recorded an episode two weeks ago, before anything happened to help hype it up for everyone. We’re getting our cohesive synergy on by following up our episodes on DC’s political stories of the 80s and some of Jim Starlin’s work to bring you Jim Starlin’s mark on the Batman Universe, Death In The Family. Just like Thanos, he set out to kill half of our main heroes. So who died: Batman or Robin? We’ll give you a hint, it’s definitely not Batman.

Read Along with Batman: Death In The Family And The Two Issues Before It

In this episode, we get some pretty serious whiplash from all the tonal shifts here. First, Ryan goes looking for some nose candy before Robin throws him off a balcony. Sly is FINALLY respecting Ryan’s choice of favorite characters (Jason Todd 4eva). Darryl just can’t stop wondering if Batman’s a real dad or not. And Phil has some thoughts on American foreign policy regarding serial killers.

Content Warning: As is so often the case, we talk about some pretty gratuitous violence here, including suicide.

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As always, Sly, and Darryl, Ryan’s other work can be found at: novel-graphics.com, minorbits.blogspot.com/, and http://wgirny.libsyn.com/website

Issue 66 – Thanos: God Of Death Or Pilot Of Helicopters?

Thanos moer liek lame-os m i rite
I am become death, you cornered kitty!

Special episode alert! Who’s ready for an editorially mandated CROSSOVER? It’s the EVENT of the SUMMER! Divisive Issues will NEVER be the SAME AGAIN! We’re joined by Henry from Midtown Comics to talk about the inconsistent history of Thanos, the star of the mega-blockbuster, Avengers: Infinity War!

Comics we cover: Spidey Super Stories 39 and Thanos Quest

Hoo boy, this was a wild ride. We give a quick synopsis of the history of Thanos leading up to Infinity Gauntlet, the book that inspired Avengers: Infinity War. How did Thanos get all the Infinity gems? Is he actually worthy of this decade long hype? And just how many skateboarding heroes does Marvel have? Henry’s a wonderful guest, despite his love of Sexy Fauxbo… I mean Lobo. Ryan traveled through time to 1979 to write the first issue we covered. Sly just can’t get behind the Marvel movies changing his precious Infinity GEMS into Infinity STONES. Darryl finally finds his soul (gem) mate in Thanos, his powerful purple prince.

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As always, Sly, and Darryl, Ryan’s other work can be found at: novel-graphics.com, minorbits.blogspot.com/, and http://wgirny.libsyn.com/website

Issue 65 – Better A Dead Lantern, Than a Red Lantern

Red Lanterns get way cooler when it's a cat that vomits blood in the 00s.
“If all superheroes are equal, how are some Superer than others?”

Oops, We Talked Politics this week, everybody. We cover one arc of Steve Englehart’s Green Lantern, Red Lantern. An alien Green Lantern defects to Russia at the height of the Cold War and meets Gorbachev. It goes about how you would expect. Oh, also a 12 year old girl uses a ring to turn into an adult and make out with Hal Jordan. Yikes.

In this episode, Ryan’s dreams finally come true and he gets to talk about Green Lantern lore FOREVER. We talk a lot about Guy Gardner, the greatest Green Lantern ever. Somehow, Phil follows suit and falls in love with Guy, too. Darryl’s love for Salaak (and Ch’P) make their first appearance. Sly’s just a simple, gorilla man commie. If you’re interested in some of the old stuff we talk about, some old episodes we reference: Steve Englehart’s Doctor Strange getting cucked by Ben Franklin and the last time Green Lantern got political, John Stewart’s first appearance.

Comics Covered: Green Lantern 207-210

Theme song: The Ballad Of Red And Green By Eric Manwiller

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Issue 63 – My Lesbian Experience With Loneliness – The Title Says It All

Lesbians, ya know?
“My Private Report On Too Real Relatability”

We’re pretty sick of doing dumb and bad books, so we let Darryl pick one. He picked an autobiographical manga that really resonated with all of us, and hopefully you, too. A young woman’s journey through her crippling depression and anxiety as she comes to terms with herself and her sexuality as a lesbian. Not a lot of goofs here, y’all.

On this episode, we get another insight into the kinds of books Darryl would do if he controlled the podcast (hint: good ones). Ryan hides behind jokes (what else is new). Phil finally finds out if sex work is legal in Japan. Sly finds a secret boy hole that none of us knew about.

Just a heads up, we talk extensively about sex, prostitution, depression, anxiety, self harm, and suicide in this episode.

Comics Covered: My Lesbian Experience With Loneliness

Recommendation: Jeffrey Brown’s Graphic Novels

Theme song: Turn Me On

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Annual 2: Ultimates 1 Vol 1 – Mark Millar’s Genius is Revealed

Ultimates
Don’t we all, Hulk. Don’t we all.

The Ultimates was Marvel’s first attempt to modernize the Avengers and it became the source material for the film. Did we finally find a Millar book where the comic was better than the movie? Well no, but at least it’s not hot garbage.

The gang time travels from 2099 to the Bush Years to see Millar back when he still put some effort into his comics. Ryan gives his reasons for why this book is good and prays it doesn’t disprove his arguments in the meantime. Phil is not sure if it’s really satire or just Millar being Millar. Darryl is not fooled by the obvious supervillain that is Millar and is desperate to out him. Sly on the other hand is just trying to find the trademark Millar cuckoldry.

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Issue 57 – Green Lantern’s Descent Into Madness & the Origin of Fridging

I'm GREEN WITH ENVY
My new jewelry is to DIE for!

Welcome to our second annual Legacyvember, Somebody-Kill-Me-November, Thanks-for-killing-my-favorite-characters-giving extravaganza. This month, we’re talking Green Lantern. In the 90s, Green Lantern went crazy, killed everybody, and was radically re-imagined as another 5’10” white guy with dark hair! So progressive! Plus the origin of the trope “Fridging,” when a female character is brutalized to motivate a male character! So progressive!

Read along: Green Lantern: Emerald Twilight and A New Dawn by Ron Marz and Darryl Banks

On this episode, we finally reveal just where the term “fridging” comes from, everyone’s favorite sexist trope! It’s been a year since we talked about The Death and Return of Superman. What happened next for Green Lantern after his city was destroyed? And how was it different from the last time a new Green Lantern showed up? Sly brings back his lore corner! Ryan really spent a lot of time talking about this story in college. Phil reveals his true superhero alter identity, The Hobo! Darryl’s been waiting to see if this story lives up to the hype for years. Does it?

Content Warning: This episode heavily discusses brutal violence against women.

Gail Simone’s Women In Refrigerators Website

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Issue 54 – The Maxx: Tricking 8-Year Old Kids Into Feminism Since 1993

The Maxx - He's like Purple Hulk but... Homeless?
The Maxx – He sure looks deep and nuanced, right?

On this episode, the gang reads the first four issues of The Maxx. He looks like a weird, purple Hulk with an overbite, but he’s a lot deeper than that! We swear. Why won’t you believe us?!?

Read along: The Maxx Vol 1

After reading Darryl’s beloved Death’s Head 2 last time, we dip back into Sly’s childhood for The Maxx. Even though it seems like a goofy dystopia, this book apparently introduced Sly to feminism. Does it hold up? Or is our protagonist just a damn snowflake, polluted by our liberal SJW culture? Darryl is really unconvinced if this book is a subversion of an inversion. Phil actually likes a book we picked for the show? Ryan loves this book even though he missed pretty much the whole plot. And is that… Sly apologizing for being salty? It can’t be!

 

Content Warning: This book heavily features sexual violence against women.

Theme: Max Power From The Simpsons

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