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WELCOME to our latest episode, with volume levels adjusted so you can hear the thing properly!

DANN LENNARD and LORD MARK WILLIAMSON kick off another titanic podcast with a letter about our last episode (from Adam G. of Melbourne).

Dubbs tells a jaw-dropping anecdote about Slade Mercer and Sid Parker and wrestler stupidity at WarZone. Oh boys!!!
This expands into general talk about wrestlers trying to get into free into local shows. Plus DON’T EVER ASK Lord Mark Williamson to help you get booked on any Aussie wrestling card.

Next, Dann talks about an article he's written aboutBruiser Brody. Loads of talk about this legendary brawler, including the Lex Luger shoot in a cage (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=epmXA8w0Qjo), Brody's lack of professionalism in general, Brody vs Flair in a 60-minute match in St Louis in 1983 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1FisTjkyS_w) and more!

Next, we get to the guts of this podcast: Dann's selections for the 2014 Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame. Yes, for the third year running, I've been given the honour of being a judge for the most prestigious wrestling/MMA hall of fame in the world. Here are my selections.

Brock Lesnar

Rock & Roll Express (Ricky Morton & Robert Gibson)

Sting

Ivan Koloff

Sgt Slaughter

Big Daddy

Jackie Pallo

Brute Bernard& Skull Murphy

Mark Lewin

Mario Milano

Bill Apter

Gorilla Monsoon

Don Owen

Jesse Ventura

Stanley Weston

And I give my reasons why for each candidate. I also list this year's nominees and why Owen Hart and Curt Hennig should NEVER get into the Hall of Fame.

Finally, we wrap things up with a serious discussion on Global Force Wrestling, Lucha Underground, TNA's TV, WWE RAW and more. Oh yeah....shit gets real, motherfuckers!!

It's an hour or so of thought-provoking, shit-stirring, intelligent discussion about the world's greatest sport. Download it HERE.

HERE'S THE FULL LIST OF WRESTLING OBSERVER HALL OF FAME NOMINEES (and their respective categories):

HISTORICAL PERFORMERS

Gene& Ole Anderson

The Assassins (Joe Hamilton & Tom Renesto)

Red Bastien

June Byers

Pepper Gomez

Dick Hutton

Pedro Morales

Ciclon Negro

Kinji Shibuya

Wilbur Snyder

John Tolos

Enrique Torres

Von Brauners & Saul Weingeroff

Tim "Mr. Wrestling" Woods

Johnny "Mr. Wrestling II" Walker

MODERN PERFORMERS (US/CAN. )

Junkyard Dog

Edge

Owen Hart

Curt Hennig

Ivan Koloff

Brock Lesnar

Fabulous Moolah

Dick Murdoch

Ken Patera

C.M. Punk

Rock& Roll Express (Ricky Morton & Robert Gibson)

Sgt. Slaughter

Jimmy Snuka

Sting

Ultimate Warrior

JAPAN CANDIDATES

Jun Akiyama

George Gordienko

Gran Hamada

Volk Han

Masahiko Kimura

Satoshi Kojima & Hiroyoshi Tenzan

Yuji Nagata

Seiji Sakaguchi

Mike& Ben Sharpe

Minoru Suzuki

Kiyoshi Tamura

Akira Taue

MEXICO CANDIDATES

Brazo de Oro & Brazo de Plata & El Brazo

Cien Caras

Hector Garza

Ultimo Guerrero

Karloff Lagarde

Blue Panther

L.A. Park

Huracan Ramirez

El Signo & El Texano & Negro Navarro

Vampiro

Villano III

Dr. Wagner Jr.

EUROPE CANDIDATES

Jim Breaks

Big Daddy

Giant Haystacks

Horst Hoffman

Billy Joyce

Kendo Nagasaki

Jackie Pallo

Rollerball Mark Rocco

Johnny Saint

Otto Wanz

AUSTRALIA/PACIFIC ISLANDS/ CARIBBEAN/AFRICA

Spyros Arion

Johnny Barend

Brute Bernard & Skull Murphy

Carlos Colon

King Kong Czaja

John DaSilva

Domenic DeNucci

Killer Karl Kox

Mark Lewin

Mario Milano

Jan Wilkens

NON-WRESTLERS

Bill Apter

Dave Brown

Jim Crockett Jr.

Jim Crockett Sr.

Gary Hart

Jimmy Hart

Howard Finkel

Jerry Jarrett

Larry Matysik

Gorilla Monsoon

Gene Okerluind

Don Owen

George Scott

Jesse Ventura

Stanley Weston

Direct download: wwcbd35.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:02 AM

WE'RE in God's own country for our latest podcast (recorded on Sunday, October 12). In this ep, Lord Mark Williamson and Dann Lennard discuss:

* Shazza McKenzie's obsession with gym selfies

* Rumours flying around the scene that Dann has lost his job (short answer: NO, HE HASN'T)

* WarZone 20 on Oct. 4 in Melbourne

* Who is Nathan Gordon and High Impact Wrestling?

* AV's recent "spectacular" show that drew NO paying fans

* The“Yagoona Screw-job" at Sydney's CWA involving those goofballs Dan Damage, Adam Asixx, CRSM and Randall. No-one comes out of this smelling like roses. Especially Mr Damage, who got outwitted by CJ Irwin. CJ Irwin!!!!, AND

* AWE's last show at Concord RSL featuring ex-WWE superstars Shelton Benjamin vs Orlando Jordan in the main event, and a sensational opener featuring Canberra veterans Crofty vs "Lightning" Luke Watts. Oh...and we discuss that godawful hair vs mask match...and we EXCLUSIVELY REVEAL why Tukahe DIDN'T lose his hair after losing!!! Also, we criticise fans who ruin shows by heckling......and yes, that DOES sound a little hypocritical.

After a short break, Dubbs gets serious and talks about the state of NSW wrestling. (HINT: it's not good).

It's 43 minutes of brilliance with absolutely NO discussion about sumo towels.

Overall, another controversial and sensational podcast by two of the most beautiful men in the Australian scene. Seriously, we're GORGEOUS!!!

 

Direct download: wwcbd34.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:19 AM

IN WHICH Dann is joined by his wife Helen on a road trip across Australia to discuss fear: in comics, in life and in movies.

Topics covered include Nailbiter from Image and Sweet Tooth from Vertigo...serial killers in South Australia during the 1970s and 80s, and how they affected our childhood perception of the world...movies such as the original Ring, the original The Vanishing and Joy Ride.

It's 43+ minutes in a noisy car spread over five days. It's epic, it's only tangentially about comics and I think it's my best podcast to date. Enjoy!

Direct download: KYE35.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:23 AM

IN WHICH I give my pre-show thoughts while driving to the PWA: Thin Red Line event at the somewhat isolated Casula Powerhouse last Saturday night. It's followed by my post-show comments once I'm safely home again. It's interspersed with drops from Edge & Christian and John Cena (back when he was entertaining on the mic), a musical interlude from Rubberbandits (above) and a four-minute "as-it-happens" summary of me getting lost in Liverpool on the way home.
It's 25+ minutes of wrestling stupidity, brought to you by Australia's most loveable pornographer.

Direct download: WWCBD33.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:17 PM

IN WHICH I talk about my history with the quirky English writer and how it grew to an obsessive love thanks to Amanda Fucking Palmer.

Plus my review of Grant Morrison's MULTIVERSITY #1.

20 minutes. Check out the podcast here.

Direct download: KYE34.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:16 AM

AUSTRALIA'S leading manager and this country's most dangerous peer of the realm, LORD MARK WILLIAMSON, sits down to chat with the always entertaining, always incisive Mad Bastard, KRACKERJAK. Enjoy the 80+ minutes of intelligent conversation about the local wrestling business. Maybe you'll even learn something.

Direct download: Audience_with_Dubbs_01.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:02 PM

IN WHICH Dann talks about this year's Free Comic Book Day haul from Phantom Zone in Parramatta, as well as the strangest comic he's read in some time, found at Elizabeths Bookshop in Sydney's CBD.

It's nearly 18 minutes of late-night comics chatter. Please enjoy!

Direct download: KYE33.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:25 PM

JUST a quick chat tonight about what I read last month. A little over 15 minutes of smooth, late-night chat. I bet you didn't know I had such a sexy bedtime voice, huh? :P

Direct download: KYE32.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:05 PM

IN THIS 20+ minute episode, I discuss some of my favourite titles that I read last month, including Lynd Ward's six "wordless novels" from the 1930s, Andy Diggle's The Losers, the exquisite Blue Is The Warmest Color and more!

Direct download: KYE-ep31.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:26 AM

COMICS READ:

JAN. 84

FEB. 118

MAR. 53

APR. 30

MAY 93

JUN. 66

JUL. 64

AUG. 92

SEP. 79

OCT. 62

NOV. 24

DEC. 42

Total comics and GNs read in 2013: 807

IN 2012, I read 885 comics, trades and graphic novels. Last year...not so many. Hey, what can I say? Life (and real books) got in the way. Enjoy the podcast.

I also discuss on why I've stopped enjoying Sex (the comic) and my thoughts on the sudden price rise for Kick-Ass 3.

BEST of 2013:

FIVE-STAR beauties were hard to find this year. But I found a few memorable titles to look back on. Here’s the list (with my original comments):

Transmetropolitan Vol. 1-10 (Vertigo, 2009-11) *****

-originally published in Transmetropolitan #1-60, Transmetropolitan: I Hate It Here, Transmetropolitan: Filth Of The City& amp; various short stories (Vertigo, 1997-2002)

Writer: Warren Ellis/Artists: Darick Robertson & friends

Sin Titulo (Dark Horse, 2013) ****¾

Writer/artist: Cameron Stewart

The nice people at Dark Horse send me PDFs and links to where I can download their wonderful graphic novels and comics. In return, I shall plug them on my blog athttp://jackkingkirby.blogspot.com.au/2013/10/review-sin-titulo-by-cameron-stewart.html.

Locke& amp; Key Vol. 2&3 (IDW, 2010-11) ****¾

Locke& amp; Key Vol. 4&5 (IDW, 2012-13) *****

Writer: Joe Hill/Artist Gabriel Rodriguez

Optic Nerve #13 (Drawn & Quarterly, 2013) *****

Writer/artist: Adrian Tomine

Overpriced and published far too rarely, but this is easily the most beautiful, haunting comic I’ve read this year.

The Cape #1-4 (IDW, 2011) *****

Writer: Jason Ciaramella/Artist: Zach Howard

Based on the short story by Joe Hill, this yarn about a slacker son turned psychotic killer supervillain by a childhood “blankie” is suitably disturbing, violent and creepy. A perfect horror tale.

Museum Of Terror Vol. 3 by Junji Ito (Dark Horse, 2006) *****

Freaked the fuck out by Junji Ito. Find out why atjackkingkirby.blogspot.com.au/2013/09/review-museum-of-terror-vol-3-by-junji.html

Time Warp (Vertigo, 2013) *****

Writers/artists: various

I don’t usually get so enthused about anthology specials (even though I buy them all the time), but this comic is a gem from start to finish. Sure, not every yarn is a goal, but every tale is thought-provoking and several are pure gems. A star-studded cast of creators including Matt Kindt, Jeff Lemire, Gail Simone, Simon Spurrier and Dan Abnett easily make this my favourite comic so far for the year.

FCBD: Buck Rogers In The 25th Century (Hermes Press, 2013) *****

Writer: Phillip Nowlan/Artist: Richard Calkins

Some fantastic full-colour reprints, an overview on the Buck Rogers phenomenon of the 20s and 30s, plus some nice pics of Buck Rogers memorabilia. What more could you ask for in a free comic?

NOTE: I’ve learned in recent days that the guy who runs Hermes Press is a total scumbag who doesn’t pay his writers and threatens to sue people when they point this fact out. He even physically threatens folk. Total jerk.

FCBD: Prince Valiant (Fantagraphics, 2013) *****

Writer/artist: Hal Foster

Just gorgeous, classic Sunday funnies artwork – and the stories weren’t half-bad either.

Uzumaki Vol. 3 by Junji Ito (Viz Media, 1998-2012) *****

Adult comics doesn’t have to mean bare boobs and bums. Sometimes a mature title can be a perverse, dread-filled horror yarn like this classic manga. This is the concluding volume detailing a spiral curse that descends on a Japanese village, eventually destroying everyone caught in its evil web. Humans metamorphosing into snails (and worse), cannibalism, murder, insanity and worse are on display, making so-called modern horror yarns like all those Crossed sequels look piss-weak by comparison. Nothing is more disturbing, yet compelling, as Uzumaki.

WORST:

THERE were a few shockers in 2013, but the biggest shock came with Vertigo’s The Exterminators. This was a rare instance when I started out really liking a title but by the end I really hated it, mainly ’cos the climax was weak and rushed, and totally destroyed every good thing that had come before it. There was a massive drop in quality over the final 12 issues, which left a really sour taste in my mouth. Still, it didn’t quite make my shit list, but here are the few that did...

The Bionic Woman #2 (Charlton, 1978)-*

Writer/artist: unknown

A horrible TV tie-in series that makes me want to smash my head repeatedly on a teevee set. Perfunctory plotting, dull art and a nasty edge of misogyny winding its way through the entire odious issue. I can’t even bring myself to keep this comic for camp purposes.

Doc Savage #1-12 (DC, 2010-11) ½*

Writers/artists: various

If there was ever an example of everything that could go wrong with a licensed comic, then this is it. I bought the first 12 issues of this awful series (it limped on to #17 before being mercifully axed), but I’ve only finally got around to reading it. Clearly, my sixth sense was telling me something three years ago. This updating of the Doc Savage mythology fails on every level. The first four issues is poorly written by supposed modern pulp writer Paul Malmont, positioning Savage and his crew as victims fleeing the US after being framed by a sinister cabal for crimes they didn’t commit. Malmont is a terrible writer, but he’s not helped by Howard Porter, one of the most inept artists ever to be given a major title to work on. Porter’s so shit he can’t even draw hats properly. Seriously, a five-year-old could draw a hat better than this dipstick. Issue five is a standalone yarn set in Greece. Writer B. Clay Moore is better than Malmont, but that’s faint praise. Porter’s art actually gets WORSE in this issue. Doc Savage was floundering by this stage, which is why “First Wave” creator Brian Azzarello came aboard with #6. Co-writing with Ivan Brandon, they craft a promising yarn where Savage and his team (who remain woefully underwritten for the entire 12 issues) are given the opportunity by the US military to be pardoned for their crimes if they go into the Middle East to track down some WMDs and an old friend, long thought dead. As Azzarello has never explained the “First Wave”world to readers, we have to work out for ourselves that much of the Middle East is a fiery atomic wasteland after “the last war”. Anyway, Nic Klein’s art is a vast improvement on Porter’s retarded scribbles (he can draw hats on men’s heads for starters). But the story soon falls apart again and makes little sense by the end of the arc. Savage has also morphed under Azzarello’s writing from a guy who is stronger and smarter than the average person due to decades of rigorous training to a substitute Superman whose capabilities border on the ludicrous. In the end, Savage shows that even death is only a minor inconvenience. Klein’s art becomes more disjointed as the issues progress –action scenes are hard to follow and at other times it’s left to the reader to fill in the gaps on what really happened in a scene. I felt like my head was gonna explode by #12 and it was a blessed relief when I realised I didn’t have to read another fucking issue. This series is definitely not a keeper, even if JG Jones’ covers are beautiful. The first nine issues also have a back-up feature, Justice Inc. (writer: Jason Starr/artist: Scott Hampton). It’s kinda brutal in a Steve Ditko-kinda way, and far more entertaining than the main feature.

The Blackest Terror #1 (Moonstone, 2011) DUD

Writer: Eric M. Esquivel/Artist: Ander Sarabia

A reimagining of public domain superhero Black Terror sees him turned into an Afro-American urban vigilante. A promising idea, but Esquivel is too busy ranting and raving about black politics to make anyone – particularly your average comic book reader – care about the character. Weirdly, he focuses much of his contempt and hatred towards “Uncle Tom” weatherman Al Roker. Sarabia’s art shows cartoony promise, but this angry tale is way too preachy for my tastes. Take a chill pill, Eric.

Red Dragon #1 (Comico, 1996) DUD

Writer: Brian Azzarello/Artists: Tony Akins (interior); Simon Bisley (cover)

Review can be found online atjackkingkirby.blogspot.com.au/2013/07/quick-review-red-dragon-1-comico-1996.html.

Groovy Gravy #11 (Edge Comix, 2009) DUD

Writers/artists: various

Even a cool cover plus various strips by good friend Mister J can rescue this Aussie comic. It’s the utter shits.

Delta Tenn #2 (Entertainment Publishing, 1987) DUD

Writer/artist: Mark Marderosian

I bought this cheap due to the cheesecake cover. D’oh. Really pedestrian “sexy cop” yarn, mired in mawkish soap opera shenanigans of the worst kind. Pretty amateurish on every level. Damn you, brief B&W comic book boom, you gave us so much shit back then!

Girls, Greed, Guns & Gore (Eros Comix, 1997) ½*

-originally published in B-Movie Comix#1-3 (Whizz-bin Comix, 1994)

Writer/artist: Eric Wald

Gary Groth and Kim Thompson, you are such hypocrites. You simultaneously published the elitist, highbrow The Comics Journal– that regularly slagged off mainstream comics – while putting out hard-core porn under your “Eros Comix” banner. Shame on you. Now, some Eros stuff was fine, but much of it was rubbish – like this graphic novel (which, thankfully, I didn’t have to pay for as it was given to me for free). Allegedly, the original three-issue series got destroyed by flood and only six copies remain. So the series was collected in one TPB and what readers got was hard-core filth, a confusing storyline and interchangeable, forgettable characters. I couldn’t follow what was going on and Wald’s cartoony art made the porn sections underwhelming. Unerotic erotica? Blegh.

Varoomshka by John Kent (Eyre Methuen, 1972) ½*

Political satire only works if people remember what the fuck was being satirised. English politics 40 years down the track means fuck-all to me. Certain political figures featured in this hardback collection of strips are familiar to me – PMs Edward Heath andHarold Wilson, Tory MPs such as Sir Alec Douglas-Home and the future Iron Lady Margaret Thatcher, US Prez Richard Nixon and Vice-Prez Spiro Agnew and Rhodesian PM Ian Smith. Actually, that’s not too shabby – but I’m sure most other people picking up this book would struggle with half the faces, most of the names and ALL the issues of the day. Which makes it a real chore to read this strip that appeared regularly in the otherwise conservative The Guardian newspaper. Varoomshka herself is a gorgeous-but-naive observer of the political machinations going on around her, usually while half-dressed. It’s well-drawn but time has not been kind to this collection.

Direct download: KYE30.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:22 AM

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