Diggin’ Through the Crates: Childish Gambino “Run This Town (Bambi Remix)”

Song: “Run This Town (Bambi Remix)”

Artist: Childish Gambino

Album: (No album single)

Lyric: “Yea, the flow so absurd/It’s C.G. boy, king of the black nerds/I gotta get my Urkel on/ I won’t stop until i see an afro at Comic-Con/And not just Samurai.”

Character Reference/Meaning:

Childish Gambino is back with “DTC” to prove once again that nerds cannot fit into a one size fits all mask and cape. In this week’s song, “Run This Town (Bambi Remix)” he is out to spread a message to everybody out there that has ever experienced any sort of bullying simply for being who they are. If you have ever been teased or made fun of because you don’t fit into the stereotypes of your race or culture, or like to express yourself differently, this song is for you. Gambino talks about his experiences with such matters, just because he likes to wear pink clothing, yellow hats, and rainbow colored items people use to call him hurtful things and basically tried to destroy him just because of his style. He talks a lot about how this happens to black kids, while at the same time addressing various stereotypes. If you are a young black man who prefers a power ring to a dime bag, or likes to hit the skate park after school while listening to Coldplay and recite every syllable and letter, then you are made to believe that you should be ashamed of who you are.

Gambino said no to all of this, and tells us that we have dealt with haters like this for too long. It is well known that Childish Gambino is a huge nerd. With his #donald4spiderman campaign, various comic book references in music, TV, and comedy, and overall praise of nerd culture, Gambino is at the top of my list to wear that nerd crown. Even back in 2012 Gambino made a cameo appearance in an Image Comics series called The Li’l Depressed Boy. In issue #10, Gambino can be seen performing a concert, which inspires the main characters to get out and experience the world. The series is said to mirror Childish Gambino’s first studio album Camp. Although it is exciting to see Gambino represented in a comic book, the chosen lyric for this “DTC” reminds us that African-Americans are still vastly underrepresented in the nerd community, both in character and fandom. It may not be a surprise to most, but there are not very many black superheroes in the mainstream. Sure, we have had some: John Stewart, Storm, Black Panther, Bishop, Static Shock, Luke Cage, Falcon, and Blade. But beyond that, there aren’t an abundant amount of characters compared to white heroes – who always seem to be at the top of the comic book totem poll.

The same can be said for people who attend comic conventions around the world. Thing is, black people want to be represented at comic conventions beyond cosplay. And a majority of the time, at a majority of the conventions, that representation is not present. As the years have gone on and progressed, I believe this image and concept of the “black nerd” has been skewed and misunderstood. When people think of black nerd, they automatically think of Urkel. However, that is rarely the case nowadays. Black nerds are as diverse in their interests and styles as Iron Man is with his suits or armor. Urkel can no longer be the poster boy for black nerds. In fact I’m not so sure there even can be a go to black nerd for today, but if there had to be one, Gambino is a front runner. Currently Gambino is on the “Deep Web Tour” promoting and performing his latest album, because the internet. I know one thing, this black nerd is going to be in that crowd when he comes to Denver, CO. on April 29th. If there is one thing to take away from this article, I would say this, be who you are and love yourself because of that. It doesn’t matter if you are white, black, brown, purple, orange, green or whatever, in the end we all want to be represented and we all want to be able to embrace what we love and be embraced by those around us. Because for every person who is willing to put you down for being you, I’m sure there has to be two people who that you are pretty cool for not giving a crap what the others think. And if not, then scratch all three in the face and make it known that they just got beat up by a nerd. So stay nerdy, stay proud, and be open to new experiences, because you never know if that person sitting next to you on the bus stop is also on their way to the comic book shop.

Weekend Wrap-Up… February 23, 2014

The Olympics are finally over, and all I could think about was that NBC’s CommunityArrow, and Scandal are coming back to the air!

To christen Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight Show debut, Justin Timberlake hooked back up with the formal SNL comedian for the fifth installment of “The History of Rap” and it was epic! This came after an incredible “Evolution of Hip-Hop Dancing” skit with Will Smith.

There’s trouble in paradise here in Denver, as Denver Comic Con is having some internal issues, low-lighted by accusations of fraud and embezzlement. The two accusers are holding a town meeting to elaborate. We’ll give you guys the full scoop as it unfolds. Remember, there are two sides to every story.

Heroes will be making a comeback, by way of a 13-episode event. While the director, Tim Kring, will make a return, there will be an entirely new cast of heroes – hopefully with new powers. It’s not the Heroes we need right now, but it’s the Heroes we deserve.

The Buffy the Vampire Slayer comics have been fairly lackluster according to resident Buffy expert Adrian Puryear, but there will be 3 issues of season 10 written by Nicholas Brendan himself.  Perhaps those issues will be more noteworthy than all the other comics?  In addition, James Marsters will be penning a graphic novel set during the final televised season.  Will in be Spike-centric?  Let’s hope!

Space Jam 2 is a real thing, regardless of whether or not LeBron James is going to be in it. To say that I’m skeptical about this would be a massive under-statement, but I know I’ll go see it anyway.

The hilarious independent comic book Burn the Orphanage, inspired from 90’s video-games and pulp style, will have a sequel out this May entitled Reign of Terror. We’ll be lucky enough to meet Sina Grace at ECCC, but I suggest you all download the first two issues of Burn the Orphanage and keep up

Vince Gilligan’s (you know, the guy who created Breaking Bad) upcoming crime drama, Battle Creek, has found itself its first cast member in Kal Penn (HouseHarold & Kumar). He’s a very entertaining actor, and I think he’d be great for the detective role.

The Green Goblin has reared his ugly head in this Amazing Spider-Man 2 still. What do you guys think? I kind of miss the purple hood, personally.

Matt Ryan, who voiced the main character in the Assassin’s Creed IV video-game, will be playing the title role in the upcoming Constantine TV series. He definitely looks the part, and I was a big fan of his voice work in AC4.

Will Smith is in the talks to start in Brilliance, based off the sci-fi novel that was released last year. The concept sounds goo enough that we will be reading the book. Another Will Smith sci-fi?  Well, we kinda think the man can do no wrong, so we’re looking forward to it.

The Suicide Squad will be joining Arrow on March 19th. The Suicide Squad (as it is now, a group of criminals offered to go on suicide missions for reprieve) is over 25 years old, but hasn’t been able to catch on. But, I mean, Michael Jai White and Sean Maher together?! Geek. Out.

This is a good week for new comics, as: Fantastic Four, Tomb RaiderX-Files Conspiracy: TransformersVandroid, & The Revenge all debut.

The Walking Dead continues with “Claimed” tonight. If you’re not caught up, check out our most recent reviews. Abraham, Eugene and Rosita have made their debut, and Rick is recovering from the ass-whoopin’ that the Governor put on him, so I expect much of the screen-time will be given to them. Predictions, questions, gripes? We want to hear them all.

Written by Sherif Elkhatib and Adrian Puryear

So Far this Week… February 19, 2014

With the expansion of Hush Comics, we have decided to give bi-weekly news updates.  Anything we find news-worthy will be posted here bi-weekly.  Have anything to add?  Post it in the comments!

Our home town of Denver is going through some Comic-Con strife.  Published in the Westword today, one of the co-founders lists the indiscretions of the Board of Directors.  Denver Comic Con has released this statement.  As a side note, our sister, Sara, is the girl dressed as Wonder Woman in the second picture of the article.  What a gem to find in such a depressing article…

Speaking of Wonder Woman, Gal Gadot is getting buff.  Back off, naysayers.

Guardians of the Galaxy has a new trailer.  What a bunch of A-Holes.  (and yes, we are hooked on a feeling.. that Rocket Raccoon is gonna be the best thing ever.)

The May cover of The Walking Dead issue 127 features a new character and double the pages.  What does this mean for the future of all of our beloved characters?  Sound off in the comments!

In May, DC will release Future’s End #1featuring a time-traveling Batman Beyond.  Check out the schway cover here.

Also in May (wow May is gonna ROCK!) Alex Ross will have a variant to All New X-Men #27 and it is awesome.  What a great artist.

Is Superman: Doomed a way to turn the Man of Steel into Doomsday?  Read the interview with writer Greg Pak here.  Action Comics #30 is due out in April.

J.K. Rowling is going to release a sequel to 2013’s The Cuckoo’s Calling called The Silkworm under the pen name Robert Galbraith.  Be warned: it isn’t anything like the Harry Potter series.

Robert Kirkman and Norman Reedus are …. going to work on another project together!  Kirkman will produce and Reedus will star in a new sci-fi film titled Air.  Read more here.

Go Ninja, Go Ninja, Go!  Is the new Vanilla Ice Kraft Macaroni and Cheese advertisement making anyone else want to buy your local grocery store out of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle shaped noodles?!  No?  Is that just us?

X-Men: Days of Future Past has a bad-ass website now.  Check it out to learn more about the mutants.

Jada Pinkett Smith will play the villain in the new Gotham series.

Jack Bauer is that much closer to gracing our television screens again.  The 12 episode 24: Live Another Day premieres in May.  But if it is only 12 hours, does that mean that he only lives for another half day?

Comcast and Time-Warner are merging.  They are waging war against Netflix.  Who will land on Park Place first?  Read the details here.

And right at publishing, the new Fantastic Four reboot cast was announced.  Just in the nick of time!

Written by Sherif Elkhatib and Adrian Puryear

“Respect My Craft” – William H. Foster III

In this consumer-based industry, it can be easy to forget the years of hard work that the people in the business put in. Behind every panel, it takes a skilled writer, artist, inker and colorist to make the product complete. Hush Comics’ weekly article “Respect My Craft” will dive into the history of these comic book greats that will hopefully give a new perspective on how the men and women behind the pen (or stylus) contribute to the collective awesome-ness of comic books, or at least give you a reason to invest in their work.

ALL BLACK EVERYTHING

Name: William H. Foster III

Profession: Writer/Historian

Notable WorkDreaming of a Face Like OursLooking for a Face Like Mine

“It’s not about what you read, but what you do with what you read.” – William H. Foster III

William H. Foster III is a scholar, historian, writer and comic book enthusiast.  Informally known as Bill, Dr. Foster currently is a Professor of English at Naugatuck Valley Community College in Connecticut.  He also travels the world speaking about African-Americans in comic books.  He has a very wide scope of knowledge including black characters, authors, artists and publishers.  Because of his wealth of knowledge, he is renowned amongst his peers in the world of comic books.

DSCN0376

His traveling exhibit “Changing Image of Blacks in Comics” is a lesson in American history.  He speaks on the beginning of comic books and how that intertwines with the history of African-American’s in this country.  The display shows an array of prints from covers of some the most famous comic books featuring black heroes and characters.  He also shows a sample from his own collection of prized books including Static, Black Lightning, Sabre, and many publications from Golden Legacy Publications.  He also lectures about the history of it all, relating to it himself, as well as with other pieces of history that are important to consider.

Dr. Foster touches on Tom Floyd and his comics Blackman and Blackwoman, Golden Legacy’s Black Cowboys which features famed bull-rider Bill Pickett, all the famous baseball player comics including, but not limited to, Jackie Robinson and Joe Louis, as well as Luke Cage, Black Panther and issue #106 of Superman’s Girlfriend Lois Lane when Lois Lane turns black for a day (uh, what?).  But more importantly, he weaves in his own experiences and his reactions to these stories along with real history.  Why were black people portrayed as “the help”or African?  Why was it impossible to find a black hero?  And if you could find one, they were instantly pulled from the shelf?  Under all the negative stereotypes and lack of diversity, there were people who were trying, though.  Dr. Foster makes sure to highlight all the great things that were happening and continuing to happen in the pop culture medium he (and we!) feels so passionately about.   He expounded on the Spring 1953 Weird Fantasy issue that brought racism to light, the beginnings of Static, and Stan Lee actually putting African-Americans in New York City.

Negro Romance #1 - June 1950, published by Fawcett Comics
Negro Romance #1 – June 1950, published by Fawcett Comics

What is really wonderful about what Dr. Foster brings along with his exhibit is a way to bridge the gap and talk about issues that may be hard for a lot of people, especially people in the comic book industry, to talk about.  Not only can he make everyone feel included in his lecture, but he can inspire anyone to pick up a comic book, no matter who is on the cover.  It is evident by talking to him and listening to his stories that comics are deeply ingrained in life.  He is most definitely influential for all people to pick up a book, graphic novel or comic and think deeply about what it says to society, to groups and to each individual.  Thank you Dr. Foster for teaching us that everything has meaning.

Checked out his bibliography and still want more? Check these books out:

Bill Foster has published to books on the history of African-Americans in comic books.  Dreaming of a Face Like Ours and Looking for a Face Like Mine are were both published by Fine Tooth Press and can be found in limited quantities on Amazon.  In 2015, Dr. Foster will publish his third book, Untold Stories of African American Stories in Comics.  He also runs his own website, Finally in Full Color, where he aims to begin an online store for black comic books. The best part is that this is for sentiment and historic value – so no ridiculous mark-ups to make a quick buck. 

How Much Does Hush Comics Love Bill Foster?

Just this past weekend, at the Blair-Caldwell African-American Research Library in Denver, Foster held a lecture that outlined the history of people of color in comic books. We found out about the lecture from John Soweto, and with the work we have been doing for our All Black Everything articles and the idea behind Hush Comics as a whole, it seemed only appropriate to attend.   We all left knowing more than when we walked in and felt inspired to keep on creating a community through Hush.  Thank you Bill Foster for educating and inspiring us!

Evan, Adrian and Sherif with Foster
Evan, Adrian and Sherif with Foster

Written by Adrian Puryear and  Sherif Elkhatib

So Far this Week… February 12, 2014

With the expansion of Hush Comics, we have decided to give bi-weekly news updates.  Anything we find news-worthy will be posted here bi-weekly.  Have anything to add?  Post it in the comments!

R.I.P., Shirley Temple. May the afterlife be full of maraschino cherries and lemon-lime soda.

Jimmy Palmiotti, DC Comics writer, is trying to launch an independent graphic novel through Kickstarter called, get this, Denver. Set in a future where Denver remains the last city in a world submerged by water (now tell me Global warming isn’t real!), Denver is about a whole new type of apocalypse. Check out this interview detailing the process.

If you weren’t sold on a Tarzan reboot that star’s Alexander Skarsgard, Samuel L Jackson and Christoph Waltz, the inclusion of The Wolf of Wall Street‘s Margot Robbie as Jane will have your jaw on the ground and your wallet in the air.

Speaking of Sam Jackson, this BAMF went all Black History Month on Sam Rubin during a TV interview for mistaking a commercial Laurence Fishburne did as Jackson’s. While I think that Rubin was just a victim of circumstance – the circumstance being that he told the angriest black man in Hollywood that he looks like another famous black man, it sheds some light on the portrayal of black celebrities among the media. Do you remember when George Stephanopoulos mistook Celtics’ legend Bill Russell for Morgan Freeman?

The hilarious Englishman John Oliver or Daily Show and Community fame will be getting his own HBO show called Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. It sounds like it will be the same format as Jon Stewart’s show, but with more foul language and obscenities – just the way we like it.

The Protector 2, starring Muy Thai legend and actor Tony Jaa, will be released March 27th (date varies). If you don’t know who Tony Jaa is, take ten minutes out of your day to watch this. This guy is 38 years old and still kicking ass. Oh yeah, Wu-Tang legend The RZA will also be acting in the film!

All-New Ghost Rider is coming out in May, and it’s not the Johnny Blaze we know. Check out this feature on the amazing new approach to a classic Marvel character.

For people looking for a reason to cut out cable/dish, Apple TV may be releasing a version that can stream live TV. I’m pretty skeptical, but it sounds like we’re on the right track.

Stephen King’s It was one of the scariest films I’ve ever seen. Alright, I have have been seven when I saw it – give me a break. A reboot has been in the works for almost two years, but director Cary Fukunaga (True Detective) has confirmed that it’s happening.

Now that Nikita is over, lead actress Maggie Q has found a new gig as a Chinese pirate queen Ching Shih in the limited series Red Flag. Shih was a real pirate in the 1800’s who rose through the ranks as a prostitute (they don’t call ’em working girls for nothing). This is in addition to her role of Tori Wu in the upcoming film-adaptation of Divergent.

Guess what Batman: Arkham Origins fans? WB Games has heard your complaints, and they don’t care about your problems. They’re too busy making the next Mr. Freeze DLC. It’s an added frustration to a game that has been riddled (get it?) with issues since it launched in October.

Mob City no mo.’  The TNT mini-series centered around mob life in LA during the 30’s and 40’s has been cancelled. It bums me out because John Bernthal (Shane from The Walking Dead) and friends acted their butts off in this noir Frank Darabont production, and I felt the show could have gone a lot further if renewed.

DC Comics and Robot Chicken are teaming up, once again, to release DC Comics Special: Villains in Paradise. There will also be accompanying variants for special DC Comics issues in March. Check em out here.

There have been several additional castings for Fox’s Gotham show, including: Alfred Pennyworth, Oswald Cobblepot (Penguin), Captain Sarah Essen (Gordon’s coworker and eventual spouse), and Barbara Kean (Gordon’s spouse-to-be and soon ex-spouse).

In the upcoming Flash series (just a pilot at this point), Tom Cavanagh will play Harrison Wells, genius physicist of S.T.A.R. Labs. It’s a huge jump from his portrayal as the title character of Ed, or as JD’s brother in Scrubs, but I think it’s a good call. Also, the original Flash from the 1970’s series will be making an appearance on the show. Our bet is that he will play the first Flash, Jay Garrick.

They just can’t let How I Met Your Mother go. A lead character has been cast for the spin-off, titled How I Met Your Dad. With HIMYM ending on March 31, I think it’s too soon to be moving on to a spin-off.

Joss Whedon and Co. have begun filming Avengers: Age of Ultron, slated to hit theaters in May 2015.

New York’s Fashion Week displayed some of the freshest dresses this side of the galaxy. Check out the Star Wars-themed dresses here.

Would you sleep with Scarlett Johansson, even if it meant being trapped in goo and preyed on by an alien? What, did I lose you after “Johansson?” Well then, you might want to check out Under the Skin, coming to theaters everywhere April 11. Leave you girlfriends at home.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Seth Rogen, along with their 50/50 director Jonathan Levine, will reunite to bring holiday cheer back to the world in Xmas.

Yee-haw! Star Wars fans, saddle up and get ready for Kanan, the cowboy Jedi (although, aren’t they all space cowboys?). Voiced by Freddie Prinze Jr., Kanan will debut in the upcoming Disney animated series, Star Wars: Rebels.

 

Written by Sherif Elkhatib

Weekend Wrap-Up February 2, 2014

The Denver Broncos reign on top was shorter than Leprechauns, as they fell to the Seattle Seahawks 43-8. What incredible play by the Seahawks. We’re still proud of our Broncos, and we’ll be rocking orange during our visit to Seattle for Emerald City Comic Con in March.

Aside from Denver’s poor performance, this is what the Super Bowl revealed:

– Nerds Rule: Captain America, Spidey, Transformers.  Oh, my!

– The return of 24

– RHCP and Bruno Mars need to go on tour.

Budweiser made me wish I owned a horse and a puppy. And that they become best friends. But it still doesn’t make me want beer.

Hush Comics will be celebrating Black History Month will spotlights on African-American writers, artists and graphic novel reviews. #ALLBLACKEVERYTHING

Jesse Eisenberg, star of Now You See MeThe Social Network, and Zombieland, has been cast as Lex Luthor in the upcoming Batman vs. Superman film. Now, this seems to have upset not only the fanboys, but the bald community as well. We’re less concerned about his dome and more concerned about the age discrepancy between Eisenberg and his co-stars. It’s my theory that Luthor may be cast as an intern at WayneTech or student at Metropolis State.

Also cast in Batman vs. Superman was Jeremy Irons, as Alfred Pennyworth. Irons has had many solid acting gigs through the last twenty years, notably as Rodrigo Borgia in The Borgias. Nobody is allowed to be upset with this casting, as Jeremy Irons meet the single qualification of Alfred – he’s British.

If your wallet is burning a hole in your pocket, you should go buy Justice League: War, the adaptation of the Justice League’s New 52 origin, hitting shelves on Tuesday. Check out our review here.

Dark Horse Comics has announced The Sakai Project, named after Stan Sakai, creator of Usagi Yojimbo. Most may remember Usagi as the mutant rabbit from who cameo-ed in the early TMNT cartoons. To celebrate 30 years of Yojimbo, Dark Horse is gathering dozens of artists to submit their own rendering of Usagi for a special anniversary issue, released in July.

Also out Tuesday, a new free game for Playstation Plus subscribers called Outlast comes out. It will scare the living crap out of you, I promise.

Bones has been renewed for a tenth season. Seems just yesterday that we were watching David Boreanaz brood around The Bronze.

Fienin’ for some bracket-style action? AMC has opened up Zombie Bowl 2014, where you get to vote on which recognizable walkers from The Walking Dead would win in a face-off with your face off. Our money is on the little girl in the pink bathrobe!

Fancy tech watches are all the rage right now, but Apple’s new iWatch product is rumored to be fitness-oriented. I’m not sure who buys watches anymore, but an integration with a fitness component could make it the next popular gadget for the market.

Harry and Hermione, siting in a tree?  According to J.K. Rowling, they should have been.  We think that Hermione and Ron were great together.  Not to mention, Harry Potter was never a love story, but a coming of age story.  H and H 4eva would have ruined that.

Can’t we all just be Friends? Well, David Schwimmer AKA Ross Gellar may possibly joining his  Friends cast-mates in prime-time sitcoms. Schwimmer stars in ABC’s Irreversible, which has yet to be picked up for a full season. Side question: Am I the only one who has been getting their David Schwimmer fix from that guy in American Horror Story?

Channing Tatum could be Gambit.  Ladies everywhere will suddenly be into the X-Men.  Men will watch no matter what.

Seth Myers gave us the Weekend Update for the last time last night on SNL.  Laugh over here.

Microsoft is offering $100 off your purchase of an X-Box One if you give them your PS3, which basically brings the price down to the retail price of a PS4. This console war is really bringing out the greed of Microsoft.

If you’re anything like me, you grew up on some Chip & Dale: Rescue Rangers. Then, like me, you should be freaking out because Disney is in talks to make a movie based on the epic cartoon that will focus on the origin of the tiny mystery-solving duo.

Sneakerheads will have something to look forward to this week as a new issue of SLAM Magazine covering the Air Jordan legacy comes out. This issue focuses on Air Jordan I-VI, so I’m sure there will be installments.

Woody Allen is definitely the most glorified pedophile in America.  Fuck you, guy.

Star Wars novels have been around for some time now, but this is the first one that I will undoubtedly buy. Darth Maul – Lockdown was released January 28th (sorry, a little late!) and it follows Darth Maul’s stay at the galaxy’s most dangerous prison; it’s also pre-Phanton Menace, which means a colorful backstory is in order.

In less important news, it has been announced that there will indeed be a sequel to Sharknado coming out on the SyFy channel. And yes, Tara Reid, in all her asymmetric-boobed glory, will be returning as the star.

Lastly, it is with great remorse and a lump in our throats that we talk about Philip Seymour Hoffman.  He was found dead this morning in NYC from a drug overdose.  Not only was he the man who gave the best performance in any Mission Impossible movie, but he also gave us Capote, the term “shart” in Along Came Polly, and of course, Plutarch Heavensbee in Catching Fire.  You will be missed.

Shut Up and Take My Money: Retro Duo Portable System

The money in our bank account is limited, so how unfair is it that there are endless gadgets, collectibles and toys out there that demand to be purchased? Let us help you sift through the crap, so you don’t can save that hard-earned cash for the things that deserve it. In other words, we give you the power to go to the counter and say, “Shut Up and Take My Money!”

shut-up-and-take-my-money

Item: Retro Duo Portable NES/SNES/SEGA Genesis system.

What it is: Eighties babies can finally find a use for all those Nintendo and SEGA cartridges collecting dust in some random pocket of the basement that HDMI ports and Blu-Ray disc games have rendered obsolete. You know what they say; if you can’t come to the party, bring the party to you. You can do just that with this portable gaming system designed by RetroBit. With the included adapters, you can alter your Retro Duo system to play almost any old NES/SNES or Genesis game that you may have lying around. As opposed to current-gen games that net anywhere from $20-60, you can find a lot of these 16-bit classics for less than five bucks at the right place (locally-owned used game stores like Game Force in Aurora, Colorado, Amazon, eBay). There’s a definite cost benefit to buying the Retro Duo pro, and if you still consider Street Fighter II and Mega-Man X to be in your top games list, then there’s no reason not to invest in this system. Emulators have been around for years, but there’s just something weird about playing a retro game on a full keyboard (although you can buy Nintendo/SEGA-like controller USB adapters). Nothing that can replace the initial three-four button systems that SEGA and Nintendo released these games on. Retro Duo offers a controller with a built-in 3.5″ screen (comparable with most smartphones on the market now). 

How much it costs: $80 brand new (Amazon). Released in January of 2012, the Retro Duo system is still widely available in nostalgic gaming stores and online alike, so there’s no rush to buy one if you’re interested. Fortunately, if you’re not worried about the portable aspect of it, you can always opt for the more affordable Hyperkin Retron 3, a gaming system that connects via your television’s composite cables so you can watch all 16 bits of NBA Jam on the big-screen. The Hyperkin Retron 3 retails for less than $50.

If it’s worth it or not: With all the emulators out for 16-bit games being computer-based, this could be a great pick-up for somebody who is on the go. However, for just double the price, you could get a brand-new PS Vita, equipped with way more features and new games that will blow the socks off you. Personally, I do just fine with mindless games like Clumsy Ninja and Robot Unicorn Attacks II (don’t even bother with the first installment). Really though, if you would prefer retro games over modern ones, this would be a great investment for you. This could be a smart purchase for your kids, as well. 16-bit game greats like Super Mario Kart or Shaq Fu (hate all you want; Shaq had moves) can be played on the go so you don’t have to miss that episode of Community because your four year-old can’t get enough Flower in their life. Keep in mind, too, that this system is not compatible with EVERY retro game out there. You can find a list of games that won’t bring back the memories on the Retro Duo Wikipedia page.

photo courtesy of Amazon.com
photo courtesy of Amazon.com

The bottom line: Pretty much, this purchase should be reserved for 80’s babies and hipsters – those who would rather play Sonic the Hedgehog than Infinity Blade. There’s really no way for adults to get away with playing this at work, it could be a great time-kill for that road trip or family reunion you have coming up.

Anything you feel this article is missing? Are you wondering whether or not a certain product is worth grabbing? Let us know!

Written by Sherif Elkhatib

Weekend Wrap-up… January 19, 2014

With the expansion of Hush Comics, we have decided to give bi-weekly news updates.  Anything we find news-worthy will be posted here every Wednesday and Sunday.  Have anything to add?  Post it in the comments!

So far this week…

Let’s go ahead and start with some pretty awesome local news; Peyton Manning has led the Denver Broncos to Super Bowl XLVIII, where they will face off with the Seattle Seahawks. Catch a recap of the game here.

The Oscar nominations for 2014 are out. Some of our movies got screwed, others got praised. Check the list out here and tell us how pissed about them you are. Note: Tom Hanks, Monsters University and Fruitvale Station all deserved some love.

DC’s Batman Eternal, a weekly release in honor of Batman’s 75th Anniversary, will see the return of a sorely missed Stephanie Brown (beloved, blonde, Batgirl), who is yet to make a New 52 debut. Get an exclusive preview of the first four issues here.

Don’t Look Back! The mid-season premiere for Season 4 of The Walking Dead is out. We have tons of predictions where our wayward travels will go after the fallout of the mid-season finale. Check it out here.

The sequel to Man of Steel, tentatively named Batman vs. Superman, has been delayed until May 6, 2016, where it will go against an “untitled Marvel movie” in the box office. Power play or tactical retreat? Check out the details here.

If you’re not excited for The Amazing Spider-Man 2, you might have to check your nerd pulse. Here’s a couple posters to ogle at while you wait for the May 2nd release date, courtesy of Sony Pictures.

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As Forever Evil wraps up in the DC Comics world, we see the induction of Lex Luthor into the Justice League, coining the term Injustice League, a callback to the late 1980’s team. Along those lines, the original Blue Beetle, Ted Kord, makes his New 52 debut. Check out a very vague preview here.

Don’t everybody jump at once, but the main role in a 1984-inspired movie called Equals has been awarded to Kristen Stewart after Jennifer Lawrence passed on it. If you’re as skeptical as we are, maybe this article can persuade you to think that it will be okay… just like everybody else.

Apparently Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill are best buds now, because they are now in talks, with rapper Q-Tip, to produce a television drama based on the 90’s Native Tongues movement. Native Tongues is a collection of progressive Hip-Hop artists. There’s not a lot of information on it, but here is a link with a bit more detail. I personally can’t wait for more news on this, so we will keep you in the loop as things progress.

Don’t think SHOWTIME ruined Dexter quite enough? Well there’s rumor of a possible “spin-off,” but only if it stars Michael C. Hall, Dexter himself. You never know; it couldn’t possibly be worse than the finale. Find out more here.

HALO nerds can finally escape Siri and her limited functionality for Cortana, the sexy blue-skinned AI from the games. Beginning in April, all new Microsoft Lumia phones will comes equipped with this new voice assistant. Read this article and you’ll be well on your way to becoming the next Jaoquin Phoenix (from Her).

I’m starting to get the vibe that Scott Synder is just a creepy dude – and that’s okay. The writer of BatmanThe Wake and American Vampire is penning a new horror series titled Wytches. Find out more about this series, debuting later this year with image Comics. If you’re interested, peep this exclusive interview Synder had with Hero Complex.

Bad-ass women will have something to cheer for, as Peggy Carter from Captain America: The First Avenger is getting her own television series. Talks have progressed, and writers have already been brought on (bonus points for hiring Whedon-verse writers!). The series will follow Carter as she rises through the ranks after the events of First Avenger. Here are some more details.

The creative team behind Batman, Incorporated, Chris Burnham (artist) and Grant Morrison (writer), are back in an image Comics horror book titled Nameless. Not a whole lot of detail has been released, but both Burnham and Morrison have admitted that the series gives them the “heebie-jeebies.” Image Comics sure is bringing the pain with horror series!

What a way to wrap up the week. Check back in with us Wednesday for more news bytes!

written by Sherif Elkhatib

Breaking Bad Week – Keeping BrBa Alive After the Felina

It’s only after you finish wiping the tears from your face from “Granite State” that you realize that there is only one episode left in what could be the most cerebral television show of the past decade. It’s normal to have these feelings of anxiety. White people had it when Friends ended, black people felt it when The Wire came to a close, and the Hispanic population all held vigil when the George Lopez Show was canceled. Too soon, I know. Heartbreak aside, there are plenty of ways to commemorate the finale of Breaking Bad. We’ve thought of seven you may want to hear about:

1.) Read Hush Comics’ “Breaking Bad Week” articles:

Every day this week, we will be posting a list relating our favorite moments, episodes and Easter eggs from the rest of the series. We will have interactive polls seeing what your opinion on the matter is, as well as original fan art by John Soweto sprinkled throughout the week in our ultimate love letter to Vince Gilligan and Co. Check out Instagram for updates as the week goes on, too. The entire Hush family is invested in the show and are as excited to bring you news as you are to read it. It’ll be a sad, sad moment when the series comes to an end, and we want to hear what you all think about it, too.

sketch by John Soweto. Check our Instagram, HushComics, for details on how you can snag some BrBa giveaways
sketch by John Soweto. Check our Instagram, HushComics, for details on how you can snag some BrBa giveaways

2.) Buy the Complete Series Blu-Ray Set:

Collectors rejoice! On November 26th, just two months away, the Breaking Bad Complete Series is set to make its way to a retailer near you. With a whopping $225 price tag, the Breaking Bad set has all the feel-good (or Bad, ha!) extras you’ll need to curl up and cry for a week straight. Among the notable bonus feature are: a two-hour long documentary capturing the filming of the final eight episodes, a nostalgic look at each character’s development, as well as numerous amusing anecdotes pertaining to filming and storyline. All told, the extras, which are listed as over 55 hours long, rival the full length of the entire series.

breaking-bad-complete-series-xl

Extras are cool and all, but let’s get real – you buy a complete series for THE STUFF! Stuff-collectors will not be disappointed, as the box set comes inside of a “BrBa” branded barrel of methylamene that you can carry home (or you can roll it, cuz it’s… ya know, a barrel). Inside the tub, which we’re estimating is about two feet tall, are such collector’s items as: a personal 16 page letter from the creator, Vince Gilligan, a Los Pollos Hermanos kitchen apron and a commemorative challenge coin, which I will no doubt scratch one side and flip it around like Two-Face while wearing a pork-pie hat and the signature beard. If you pre-order directly from the Breaking Bad Store, you will receive a free t-shirt. It’s a steep price for any television series set, but collectors and die-hard fans will jump at the chance to own this piece of TV history.

3.) Breaking Bad: Alchemy app/book:

If you’re looking for exclusive interviews, factoids and high-quality photos to give you the inside scoop on Breaking Bad, the Apple iBook app, Breaking Bad: Alchemy, is the place to go. The iPad only app is downloadable for $10; making this an iPad app only definitely leaves the market unsaturated, but after using it, I’m convinced that making it available for smartphones wouldn’t do it justice.  I downloaded Alchemy before I set out on a road trip from Denver, Colorado to Lincoln, Nebraska (“What’s in Nebraska?” – Saul Goodman).  In the seven-hour drive, I was amazed at the level of depth I came across. I mean, there’s only so much you can learn from a Wiki page before it feels like a chore to read. Not with Alchemy – there was interactive trivia, there was hide-and-seek style clues to click on, and there was death! A really cool detail in this app was the interactive death timeline of all our favorite homies and villains. If I had a 40 with me, I would have poured it all out along I-80. Another great read is the episode guide, in which the titles of episodes are explained. Some focus on a tribute to a past movie or catchphrase, and some mean nothing at all until they are grouped together. In a generation of television that is all about instant gratification, it’s very satisfying to see that kind of forethought put into something as simple as the episode names. The app also focus a lot on different aspects that make up the show, such as cinematography, sound and special effects. Alchemy is all substance (pun!), unlike most books of the same nature. It does a great job of utilizing the medium, by doing what a book cannot by showing the reader instead of telling the reader. It’s any fan’s compendium for the series, giving value to casual and dedicated viewers the same.

Here is shot of the Cousins' attack on Hank with the film lens alteration on and off.
Here is shot of the Cousins’ attack on Hank with the film lens filter on and off. Edited with Diptic mobile app.

4.) Road trip to the ABQ:

Who wouldn’t want to take a trip to the ABQ and relive their favorite scenes? We have no idea; they definitely aren’t reading this blog. Taking trips to Albuquerque, New Mexico solely for the purpose of paying tribute to Breaking Bad is totally normal. And unlike The Wire, is totally encouraged by the city that it was filmed in. Albuquerque takes great pride in Breaking Bad, with many of the local businesses feeding off the recent tourism that the heralded show now brings in. We will actually be embarking on our our Breaking Bad tour in a couple weeks, the weekend after the finale which also happens to coincide with the annual International Balloon Fiesta. If we’re lucky, we might even see a gigantic Heisenberg face floating in the distance. Keep up with us as we document all our findings through our trip through Heisenberg’s Hometown. By the time we are done, we will hopefully have compiled a comprehensive list of places to go, people to see, and meth dealers to meet. Kidding, we’re keeping that information to ourselves. 

The White Housela-tr-albuquerque-escape-20130728-photos-004

5.) The internet is for porn Breaking Bad:

In this lovely age of information, there isn’t much that you can’t find out about your favorite things. In the case of Breaking Bad, there is plenty of buzz. From nerdy t-shirt sites (like Redbubble.com and OnceUponaTee.com) to poorly-drawn webcomics, there’s something for everyone. Before writing our reviews, we always check out other people’s opinions on IGN, the Breaking Bad wiki or Reddit. And we always check out the Heisenberg Chronicles on Tumblr, or deviantart for screencaps and original fan art. Wikiquotes also offers some pretty great lines of dialogue in the series that you might have forgotten throughout the series. As Breaking Bad falls off the tongues of your friends, the internet is a great place to keep the legend of the Heisenberg alive. Oh, and here’s one on us, http://www.bettercallsaul.com is REAL.

Just grab your meth and double click, it's Brea-king Bad!
Just grab your meth and double click, it’s Brea-king Bad!

6.) Spin-offs:

Of all the characters that have blank pages of background story, Saul Goodman AKA Saul McGill AKA we don’t actually know if any of that is true is the most intriguing. He always seems to know a guy who knows a guy (spoiler alert: sometimes, that guy also knows a guy, too). So imagine my delight when it was announced on my birthday (gush!) that AMC has given the green light to a prequel story to Bob Odenkirk’s Saul Goodman titled Better Call Saul. It will be fulfilling to find out just how exactly Saul became a “criminal” lawyer. Certainly, it won’t be from positive experiences. He and Mike probably didn’t meet while talking about water on Mars at the bar. The most reassuring news is that it will be created by Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould, so we should see high caliber writing with both members of the Breaking Bad brain-trust having their hands on it.

Another spin-off that Breaking Bad is getting is far less spin-offy, and more cultural recreation. In what I consider a tribute to the original, Mexican television network Univision has picked up the series. From what it sounds like so far, it’s going to be a hilarious telenovela version of the show, boasting main characters Walter and Cielo Blanco (no seriously) as they pretty much do the same thing AMC’s Breaking Bad has done, but with rice and beans for awkward dinner instead of Albertson’s deli food and a significantly lower budget. While it’s undoubtedly going to be hilarious, it will be interesting to see how a Mexican network portrays the very cartel that infects its country. I won’t knock it until I’ve seen it, because, honestly, I can’t think of a better way to teach nerds Spanish.

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7.) Comic-Cons:

Go to your local comic book convention. Each year, it becomes less about actual comics (although they are the backbone to such events) and more about thousands of nerdgasms happening simultaneously. Costumes, television shows, action figures, homemade trinkets and fan art capture so much more of the nerd spirit than before, and everybody has benefited. All you need to be at a Comic Con is the appreciation and respect of cult followings. And Breaking Bad definitely has that among all nerd walks of life, as we found out at the Denver Comic Con. Not only is it fully appropriate to wear a yellow haz-mat suit and shave your head to become the Heisenberg, but people loved it when we handed out blue rock candy meth and they crooned when Adrian (dressed quite well as Pinkman) called everybody nearby a “bitch.”  Cosplay aside, there were tons of merch, from t-shirts to fan art and cool jewelry, Breaking Bad has already solidified itself as a great American treasure in pop culture with the possibility of being resurrected every time a middle-aged man in sweat-stained underwear and a green button-up shirt walk by.

Sherif and Adrian aka Walt and Jesse
Sherif and Adrian aka Walt and Jesse

We hope you liked our article! Join us tomorrow as we discuss Jesse’s Top 7 Bitch Moments… BITCH!

Written by Sherif Elkhatib

Official photos courtesy of AMC Television and the internet.

Denver Comic-Con 2013

After going to San Diego Comic Con last summer and not being able to get tickets for this year, going to the 2013 Denver Comic Con seemed like the second best choice.  Albeit, we were disappointed with my choice at first, well because, it’s San Diego.  But after attending Denver’s 2nd con, our first time going, we were pleasantly entertained the whole weekend.  Friday night was good for 2 things: seeing the line and getting an idea of the layout of the exhibition hall.  The line was ridiculous, a gripe to be heard around Denver for days to come. By the time we arrived at about 5 p.m. people were told that if they did not pre-pay for a ticket, they would need to leave the line because tickets had sold out.  But as we found out later, this was not the case.  Several people in the Hush family were still able to get tickets for the weekend.  That night we checked out the main hall.  The goodies were pretty good.  The Artist Alley had some pretty good pickings.  Our friend Zak Kinsella was in attendance with his comic series MidspaceJenny Parks  was there with her illustrations of cats as superheroes.  We picked up these four:

catman and mewane
Batman and Bane by Jenny Parks
Katniss and Black Widow by Jenny Parks

Blake Henriksen had a booth, too.  We had picked up some of his art at Denver’s Starfest.  His Ninja Turtles were such good art, we couldn’t pass them up.  There was also a booth for Sparkle Jewelry designs where we bought this awesome Breaking Bad necklace charm.

Breaking Bad Charm
Breaking Bad Charm

Spending all your money on the first day can be a curse or a blessing, but for us, it worked out well, because we weren’t tempted to blow money we didn’t have the rest of the weekend.  The highlight of the evening for Adrian was meeting J. August Richards, notably from Angel and soon to be notably in Joss Whedon’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.  Obviously, I’m a huge Whedon fan.  Growing up watching Buffy and then Angel, I (Adrian) looked up to Charles Gunn a lot.  He was the best character on Angel consistently.  Meeting him was a real pleasure.  He is very down to earth and really cares about his fans and their reaction to him.  It was really refreshing.  A lot of people in the entertainment industry can be nice and laid back, but with J., it really felt as though he could be your best buddy.  We like best buddies.

J. August Richards, Adrian and Sherif
J. August Richards, Adrian and Sherif

Saturday was really the day to be there.  Yes, the line to get in even if you had a badge was ridiculous.  I hope that with all the backlash, next year will be a smoother process.  However, being that it is only the second year of its existence, and that it is now half the size of the international con, I imagine that there weren’t enough volunteers to keep up with the masses.  Our day started off great.  Sherif, Taylor, Evan, and Adrian all dressed as meth cooks from Breaking Bad.  Sherif, Taylor and Evan were Walt White and Adrian was Jesse Pinkman.  We all dressed in yellow chemical suits.  The guys had different aspects of Walt, but all wore his glasses and facial hair.  Adrian wore yellow shoes and a yellow striped beanie to match the suit.  It was a lot of fun getting stopped all the time to take pictures.  We even gave out samples of our “blue stuff” (which was really just rock candy) to people who wanted our picture.  But there is a down side to this costume.  Have you ever worn a chemical suit?  It’s hot.  Have you ever worn a chemical suit in a room with 40,000 other people?  Oh dear God.  Never been so sweaty and stinky.  But when you dress up as meth cooks, bad hygiene seems to be part of the costume.

Sherif and Adrian aka Walt and Jesse
Sherif and Adrian aka Walt and Jesse
Taylor and Evan aka Walt and Walt
Taylor and Evan aka Walt and Walt

Sherif and Adrian went to J. August Richards’ panel on his new project called The Hypnotist.  It was a short featuring Lisa Gay Hamilton and Sharif Atkins.  The story is simple: a man goes to a hypnotist to cure his smoking addiction.  But the ideas behind the story are brilliantly complex.  The cast is black, and of course J. is black.  What is great about this all-black cast is that it doesn’t matter the race of the characters, the story is relatable to everyone, which is exactly what J. wanted.  Of course because Richards is brilliant, the writing is impeccable.  The characters are both easy to relate to.  The theme of African-American history is apparent in the story, but more importantly, it is direct symbolism.  I love when little details mean so much to a story.  It shows a high intelligence of literary tools.  There should be more coming soon with different characters being hypnotized.  J. did say that he doesn’t want to put it online.  In today’s society, it really does need to be online for people to want to watch it.  He said he doesn’t want people to be flipping between tabs while his story is on in the background.  I, for one, would not do that because the story is really compelling.  I think it would be great if he could sell it to Netflix to avoid that, but with each story being so short, I don’t know if that is a possibility.  Congratulations to J. and his new project.  I hope the public gets to see the rest of his brilliance.

Evan and Taylor also got to experience the Star Wars trivia event, hosted by Geeks who Drink.  This event was the most exciting and disheartening experience Taylor had all weekend long – allow me to explain.  I’ve only ever participated in one other general public Star Wars trivia event in my life.  During that faithful day I choked on a relatively easy question and knocked myself out of the running for first place (I had to settle for third… shameful, I know).  This day at DCC would serve as redemption and was guaranteed to put me in a room with dozens of other fanatics just like me.  While the competition was indeed exciting and my brain-farts were gratifyingly limited I was overall disappointed in my fellow enthusiasts.  Plain and simple – they were jerks.  Now, I’m not speaking for everyone – my experience is limited to the extents of my sight and hearing of my immediate surroundings – but since when did SW fanboys become the elite of the nerd world?  Before the competition I enjoyed the prospect of happy and accepting fans congregating and sharing a common passion.  By the time we left I was practically holding my brother back from “unleashing The Force” all over an exceptionally snobby guy that had been sitting next to us the whole time.  Overall the experience was enjoyable, but I hate that it was cheapened by those who weren’t there just to have fun.  That being said – one of our Hush goals is to foster a nerd-universe where all are welcomed, accepted and wanted regardless of depth of knowledge or interest.  If you’re a fan/enthusiast – don’t disservice the passion you have by putting down others who aren’t at your level.  Share the love and knowledge and I guarantee everybody wins.

During the day, Sherif and Adrian met with J. August Richards again, Clare Kramer from Buffy, and the awesome, “it’s ok” to be George Takei.  All are wonderful people.  And all were willing to sign our official Hush Comics poster.  It was lovely!  George is a fun guy who loves to talk.  He also has really good penmanship.

It's definitely ok to be George Takei!
It’s definitely ok to be George Takei!

To spare you reading a novel of my (Taylor’s) adventures over the day and a half of my time spent at the convention, I’ll share just a few highlights.  First being the time my little bro and I spent just walking around.  This was neat for the obvious reasons (people watching, ogling artwork and crafts, stalking famous people), but was enhanced by what my brother and I were wearing.  What I mean to say is that we were in costume as well.  Anybody watch Breaking Bad?  If you do then picture Walter White in his yellow haz-mat suit (respirator and all) carrying around little sample baggies of that crystal blue meth.  Got the image?  That was me and Evan at DCC (our meth was actually candy though – just for the record).  What made this uncomfortable experience so worth it (hazardous material suits don’t breathe people… not one bit) was really feeling like you were a part of it all.  I mean really, really feeling a part.  I know I would have loved it had I gone in normal people clothes, but there’s something extra special about a Storm Trooper coming up and asking to get a picture with you.

Taylor and said Storm Trooper
Taylor and said Storm Trooper

Saturday was a good day for all of us.  Being in a land of nerdom was like being at home.  There were so many people who shared our interests.  It was really inspiring.  We plan on holding a booth there next year!

On Sunday, Sherif and Adrian went to the Whedon panel, which featured J. August Richards and Clare Kramer.  J. of course played Charles Gunn on Angel and Clare Kramer played Glory on Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  It was a little like a town hall meeting.  They talked about their time working with Joss and their stories of being hired.  It was very informative to listen how the business works for actors.  Clare had an easier time than J. did with being hired.  Both actors recalled big learning experiences with Joss and the other actors on both series.  J. told the audience that his favorite actor to work with was Andy Hallett, who played Lorne on Angel and has since passed away.  Clare talked about being given the “reward” of being able to do her own stunt in her last scene in season 5 where she is thrown through the brick wall.  She also talked about doing fight scenes with Sarah Michelle Gellar and their stunt doubles.  It was interesting to hear how those scenes are filmed, because as Clare said, one time, she hit Sarah’s stunt so hard that she got a black eye and a huge bump on her head for 3 weeks.  They also talked briefly about their new endeavors.  Clare works on her website geeknation.com while J. is working on The Hypnotist and the upcoming Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.  J. was mum about what his role would be in the series, but from previews it looks like he will be a mutant.  Overall, it was a great panel.  There were many tid-bits fans wouldn’t get from any other source.

The rest of our day was just walking around and observing the costumes.  Our costumes were ditched the day before.  We couldn’t handle two days of being Walt and Jesse.  Their life is beyond our realm…  The weekend was a success.  We had fun, saw some things we hadn’t seen before, met new people and enjoyed being ourselves.  We can’t wait until next year!

written by Adrian Puryear, Sherif Elkhatib and Taylor Lowe